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20th December 1943

WWII Timeline




Events On This Day

Eighth Air Force. Window metal foil strips which, when dropped from an aeroplane, provide an echo which confuses radar locating equipment is used for the first time on an Eighth Air Force mission, when more than 470 heavy bombers attack port area at Bremen

Ninth Air Force. 35 United States Army Air Force (USAAF) B-26 Marauder medium bombers attack V-weapon sites in North France. More than 150 others abort because of weather.

Mediterranean Allied Air Forces (MAAF). Mediterranean Allied Air Forces (MAAF) is established, retroactive to 10 December 1943. Commanded by Air Chief Marshal Tedder, Mediterranean Allied Air Forces (MAAF) is comprised of all Allied air elements (The British Royal Air Force (RAF), United States Army Air Force (USAAF), French, and other) which are operating in Mediterranean Theatre of Operations (MTO). These elements previously were part of Mediterranean Air Command and Northwest African Air Forces (NAAF), which are disbanded. United States Army Air Forces, North African Theatre of Operations (USAAFNATO) is established with General Spaatz as commander, to facilitate administration of Army Air Force units of Twelfth and Fifteenth Air Forces.

Twelfth Air Force. United States Army Air Force (USAAF) P-40 fighters and The British Royal Air Force (RAF), South African Air Force (SAAF), and Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) fighter-bombers blast vehicles and heavily defended areas near Chieti and Orsogna, and hit fuel dump near Manoppello. A-36 Apache dive bomber bomb Terracina and hit water towers, a train, and a railway station South of Rome.

Fifteenth Air Force. 30 United States Army Air Force (USAAF) B-24 Liberator heavy bombers bomb marshalling yard at Sofia, and more than 100 B-17 Flying Fortress heavy bombers hit Eleusis airfield. Heavy bombers and escorting fighters claim over 30 fighters destroyed in combat. 9 of the escorts are lost.

Fourteenth Air Force. 11 United States Army Air Force (USAAF) B-25 Mitchell medium bombers and 6 P-40 fighters from Kweilin pound Yoyang railroad yards. P-40 fighters from Hengyang also provide support for the medium bombers.

Fifth Air Force. Enemy bivouac is blasted by more than 90 B-24 Liberator heavy bombers and B-25 Mitchell medium bombers. A-20 Havoc light bombers hit Arawe area and P-38 Lightning fighters in the area claim 10 enemy fighters shot down. P-40 fighters strafe target along South coast of New Britain. B-24 Liberator heavy bombers on armed reconnaissance bomb merchant ship off Cape Pomax. B-26 Marauder medium bombers and B-25 Mitchell medium bombers hit bivouacs in Finschhafen area and bomb town of Alexishafen.

Thirteenth Air Force. 13 United States Army Air Force (USAAF) B-25 Mitchell medium bombers, with fighters cover, bomb Korovo village and docks on Shortland Island. 8 others, with fighters escort, hit Buka. Afterwards the fighters strafe Kieta and Tenekow. Other fighters and B-34 Lexington bomber on armed reconnaissance, patrol, and night snooper missions attack numerous targets throughout Bougainville.

Seventh Air Force. 16 United States Army Air Force (USAAF) B-24 Liberator heavy bombers flying out of Baker and Nanumea bomb Maloelap. 3 heavy bombers are shot down. United States gunners claim 8 fighters destroyed.

Go To: 21st December
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Sources

The Second Great War.
Edited by Sir John Hamilton

The War Illustrated.
Edited by Sir John Hamilton

2194 Days Of War.
ISBN-10: 086136614X

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