Burma Air Campaign 1941 - 1945
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The scene is set with an overview of the respective states of the RAF and Japanese Air Force, and an explanation of how the American Volunteer Group (The Flying Tigers) came to be in China.
There is a concise description of air ops covering the Japanese invasion of Indo China, Malaya and Singapore, together with a close study of the sinking of the Prince of Wales and Repulse, which altered the air/sea power equation.
The main emphasis is on the use of air power both offensive, defensive and air transport during the protracted Burma Campaign. This embraces operations in the Arakan and the various Chindit long range penetration expeditions. These relied almost totally on air supply and evacuation.
In the later stages of the War, the US and RAF combined forces and predictably this was not without controversy. Few realize that US B29s operating from India attacked Japan itself.
Finally the role of ground attack aircraft against the retreating Japs played a significant part in the Allied advance in Burma.
morning following the squadron’s arrival the 5th Hikoshidan commenced a series of four raids on Toungoo using between six and fifteen bombers, inflicting considerable damage, although luckily the Lysanders escaped unscathed. No. 1 Squadron’s Commanding Officer, Squadron Leader Majumdar, did not feel disposed to take this attack lying down and with the coming of daylight had his Lysander fitted with bomb racks enabling the aircraft to carry two 250lb bombs, one under each wing. Escorted by two
having to postpone the large-scale raid planned, the JAAF nuisance raids began to have an undreamed of effect, the mass exodus of the population causing the city to grind slowly to a halt, piles of uncollected rubbish rotting in the streets and the resultant stench raising fears of plague. A number of fighters remained in the area but were not fitted with radar for night interceptions. Exhaust damper problems with the Japanese bombers might have made interceptions possible but, as with the 17
Allied fighters and bombers while leaving the transports, without which Allied ground operations could not proceed, relatively untouched. Possibly there was something in the ‘warrior code’ which made attacking unarmed transports beneath the Japanese fighter pilots of the day. If so, it was a blunder of monumental proportions. With one eye on the impending Operation U-GO, 5th Hikoshidan concentrated most of its strength in the Imphal area. Operations on the Arakan front were carried out by 7th
separate command was Photographic Reconnaissance, No. 171 Wing RAF, comprising Nos 681 and 684 Squadrons, being placed under the control of Strategic Air Force while the 9th Photographic Reconnaissance Squadron remained under the control of 10th USAAF. This often resulted in wasteful duplication of effort and on 1 February the joint Photographic Reconnaissance Force was formed under Group Captain S.G. Wise RAF. Significant innovations in photographic reconnaissance were developed in the 10th
fighters. Raid on airborne troops Indoshi (Indawgyi?) Lake area. Note 1. Japanese Monograph No. 64 (The Library of Congress, Washington DC). Appendix III Outline particulars of principal Allied and Japanese aircraft used in the Burma Air Campaign Allied Aircraft Types Fighters Supermarine Spitfire Mk VB Powerplant: Rolls Royce Merlin 45/1,515hp (1,130kw) @ 11,000 feet (3,353m). Performance: Max. 374mph (602km/h) @ 13,000ft. Service ceiling 37,000ft (11,280m). Range 470 miles (756km) on