ACROSS THE PACIFIC
The victories attained by the Japanese at Pearl Harbor, at Singapore, and in the East Indies made the successful defense of Australia vital, not only for its own sake, but as a base from which to launch an offensive to recover the ground lost and carry the war into the inner defenses of the newly expanded Japanese empire. Australia itself possessed neither the power nor the material resources needed to guarantee its own security, much less to take the offensive against the Japanese. With Britain's forces heavily committed in the Middle East and elsewhere, the responsibility fell chiefly on the United States.
Although support of U.S. and Allied forces in the Southwest Pacific depended mainly upon seaborne transport services, the vital importance of a supplementary air route had been recognized by the War Department early in the fall of 1941. At that time the War Department was greatly concerned with the build-up of U.S. forces for the defense of the Philippines, a defense in which it was expected that the AAF's heavy bombers would play a significant, perhaps decisive, part. The first of the B-17's flown out to Luzon had followed a route from Hawaii by way of Midway and Wake Island to Port Moresby in New Guinea, and thence northwestward to the Philippines. One leg of this route, that from Wake to Port Moresby, was well over 2,100 miles long. More important, the planes had to fly over Japanese-mandated islands in the central Pacific. Consequently, the War Department early in October had agreed to an AAF proposal that an alternate and more secure route through the South Pacific should be developed. When war came, the construction of necessary facilities along this route was not yet complete, but the work was well advanced. Between the 3d and 12th of January 1942, three B-17's passed
that way on a flight from Hickam Field through Australia and on into combat over Java. Delay in completing the strip on Christmas Island forced a detour for a landing at the naval air base on Palmyra Island, but Christmas was open to four-engine aircraft by 15 January.*
The new route, at best, was painfully long—more than 7,800 miles from California to Australia. Its longest jump, that from Hamilton Field near San Rafael, California, to Hickam Field, west of Honolulu, was 2,398 statute miles. Hickam was the principal AAF base in the Hawaiian archipelago and, like Pearl Harbor, had suffered severely at the hands of the Japanese on 7 December 1941. It was a well-equipped permanent installation, however, and the damage was quickly repaired. Some 1,346 miles to the south lay Christmas Island, a tiny coral atoll only a few feet above high tide. Next came Canton Island, a still more barren islet, 1,055 miles west and south of Christmas and 1,920 miles out of Hickam Field by direct flight. Its runways, like those on Christmas Island, were rolled coral. Another 1,274-mile flight brought the Australia-bound aircraft to Nandi Airport, a Royal New Zealand Air Force Field on the northwest coast of Viti Levu Island in the Fiji group. The next stop was at Tontouta Airport, near Noumea, capital of the French island of New Caledonia, approximately 850 miles out of Nandi, The last lap of the route, another 915 miles, took the aircraft from Tontouta into the mainland of Australia. Originally, Townsville in Queensland was the intended terminus, but William-town, approximately 88 miles northeast of Sydney, and Charleville, some 430 miles inland from Brisbane, actually served as transport and ferrying termini, respectively, until September 1942. Not until 1944 did the Air Transport Command establish a terminal to the north at Townsville, which at first had been too near to enemy air bases and too far from Army and AAF headquarters at Melbourne.1
The Air Corps Ferrying Command, and later ATC, was slow to develop services in the Pacific that were comparable to those it provided along the Atlantic routes. As an organization which owed its very origins to the need for assistance to Great Britain and which quickly assumed heavy responsibility for the ferrying of AAF planes within the United States, the command had no part in the early movement of Army aircraft across the Pacific. The first crews taking off from Hamilton Field for the flight to Hawaii were briefed by the Fourth Air Support Command, which continued to render this service
* See Vol. I, 180-82, 192, 228, 374.
until March 1942. The Hawaiian Department had been charged with responsibility for developing the route beyond Hickam Field, and its agencies and the defensive forces stationed along the island chain connecting Hawaii with Australia naturally assumed the obligation to get transient planes through. The route ran through areas in which the Navy not only held the top command but control over essential communications, and it reached its terminus in General MacArthur's Southwest Pacific Area, a command as sensitive to the prerogatives of a combat theater as any to be found the world round. Moreover, in the division of available aircraft for long-range transport services in December 1941, the Navy had received, tacitly at any rate, responsibility for the development of air transport services in the Pacific.
Origins of the Pacific Wing
Although the Ferrying Command at the beginning of the war had its hands more than full in the performance of other duties, it promptly laid claim to the right of clearing all Army planes leaving the West Coast for Pacific destinations. At the end of 1941 plans were being drafted for the establishment of a subordinate headquarters having charge of transpacific ferrying operations. The problem at the moment was to find personnel to man such a headquarters, and the Pacific Sector had its origin in the assignment of 1st Lt. Robert A. Ping to Hamilton Field, where he reported on 3 January 1942. Before the end of the month Ping had personally cleared six LB-30 aircraft to Hickam Field. Gradually, he built up the personnel of the sector and almost singlehandedly procured for it and himself a sector commander of adequate rank in the person of Lt. Col. Karl Truesdell, Jr. At the beginning of March, sector personnel assumed full responsibility for the briefing and clearing of aircraft to be ferried over the Pacific.2
During the spring, ferrying operations in that direction increased from 33 departures dispatched by Ferrying Command officers in March to 36 in April, 43 in May, and 64 in June. Although some of these planes were flown by combat crews, others by the Royal Air Force Ferry Command, and still others by civilian employees of Consolidated Aircraft Corporation's Flight and Training Department, most of the 182 aircraft involved were flown by Pacific Sector crews. These ferrying crews, 32 in number, reported to the Pacific Sector
during March, April, and May, after an intensive course of training (Project 32)* at Morrison Field, Florida.3
During the first four months of 1942 virtually all the ferried planes were destined for the Fifth Air Force in Australia. Indeed, the need for planes in Australia, and for defense of the South Pacific route beyond Hickam, was so urgent that the Seventh Air Force on Hawaii received no reinforcements during this period and was even forced in February to forward 12 of its own 43 heavy bombers to the Southwest Pacific. But all this was changed in May, as hurried preparations were made for the anticipated attack at Midway by the Japanese. Between 18 May and 10 June, no less than 60 B-17's were flown from California to Oahu for reinforcement of the Seventh Air Force. Only 17 of the Seventh's heavy bombers were able to join the attack on the Japanese fleet early in June, and original estimates of their effectiveness have been drastically revised as a result of later study,† But this revision need not detract from the credit due the B-17 crews themselves or from that due the pilots of the Pacific Sector. These men and the crews who flew with them, working with never more than a few hours sleep between flights, delivered a total of 32 B-17's from the mainland to Hawaii during the critical seventeen days, 22 May-7 June. Crews of the 69th and 70th Bombardment Squadrons also flew 26 B-26's in during the same period with the assistance of navigators supplied by the Pacific Sector.4
During January and February the Ferrying Command had assisted representatives of the Netherlands East Indies government in arranging for the flight delivery over the South Pacific route of a considerable number of lend-lease B-25's by RAF personnel and crews of Consolidated Aircraft Corporation's Flight and Service Department. The return of some of these and other ferrying crews posed a problem.5The scarcity of men qualified to fly aircraft on long-distance over-water flights made it necessary to use the fastest possible means of getting them back to the point where they might start another delivery. It was expected that the Navy, which in the preceding December had taken the responsibility for air transport services in the Pacific and had entered into contract with Pan American Airways as the operating agency for a small fleet of flying boats, would be able to provide this necessary assistance. By February, however, it was becoming
* On Project 32, see above, pp. 32-35.
† See Vol. I, 452-62.
apparent that the Navy could not return all the Army's ferrying crews from Australia to the United States as promptly as military requirements demanded. When the problem became acute, General Arnold on 29 March 1942 directed Colonel George, who was about to take command of the Ferrying Command, to secure two British LB-30's and open a transport service between Honolulu and Australia.6
The two transports, which were reconditioned by the Consolidated Aircraft Corporation and flown by crews provided on contract with that corporation, normally made a through run from California to Australia and back. A survey round-trip flight, with John A. McMakin, chief of the company's Flight and Transport Department, as pilot, was made early in April, and on the 23d Consolidated opened a regular service.* The distance from California to Hawaii made any expansion of this service dependent upon procurement of additional four-engine aircraft. Although two-engine planes often made the flight, they were of necessity too heavily laden with fuel to carry either cargo or passengers. But four additional LB-30's were added to the fleet in May, and during that month fifteen westbound flights departed Hamilton Field, carrying in the aggregate 120 passengers, nearly a ton of mail, and almost 13 tons of freight. Thereafter the size of the airlift grew rapidly, and the westward movement of critical freight, mail, and key personnel soon equaled and then surpassed in relative importance the eastbound transportation of ferrying crews which had led to the beginning of the service.7
After the Ferrying Command had been redesignated the Air Transport Command, the Pacific Sector in July became the South Pacific Wing. The crews formerly assigned to it passed now to the control of the Ferrying Division of ATC, and the new wing, like its counterparts in the Atlantic, became responsible for the general supervision of all Army transport and ferrying activity within the area of its control.8 But the South Pacific Wing, despite its name, actually exercised little authority beyond Hamilton Field in California. Wing personnel at Hamilton were now numerous enough to perform their required tasks, but in the Pacific the only personnel properly assigned to the Air Transport Command in July 1942 were Maj. Fred K. Dupuy, control officer at the Australian end of the route, and Capt. H. Ray Millard, Dupuy's successor in mid-August. Seven sergeants, hand-picked
* This service was operated by Consairways, a subsidiary of Consolidated.
picked by Captain Millard before his departure from Hamilton Field, reached Australia by water late in August to begin careers of endless toil. Also two officers arrived by air to assist Millard, but in between California and Australia ATC enjoyed no real control. At Hickam Field the supervision of ATC operations was exercised by Lt. Col Gordon Blake, whose transfer from the Seventh Air Force to the Air Transport Command had been flatly and successfully refused by the Hawaiian Department. Blake depended upon the 7th Airways Detachment of the Seventh Air Force and the 19th Troop Carrier Squadron, whose primary mission was to supply air transportation within the archipelago. Not until October was the wing successful in securing the placement of Capt. Arthur W. Stephenson, a veteran airline pilot, as ATC control officer at Hickam Field. At Christmas and Canton islands, Nandi Airport, and Plaines des Gaiacs, which in June replaced Tontouta as the New Caledonia stop of aircraft Australia-bound, other numbered airways detachments of the Seventh Air Force continued to handle ferried and transport planes on behalf of ATC. They had from one to four officers apiece and by October approximately the authorized strength of fifty enlisted men each.9
Although ATC had its own officers at the Australian terminus of the line, it took these officers nearly four months to get disentangled from the control of an intratheater air transport organization known as the Directorate of Air Transport (DAT). The directorate, headed by Group Capt. Harold Gatty of the RAAF, late Pan American Airways representative in Australia, was handling a varied and heavy mission with a motley lot of land planes and flying boats—Australian, Dutch, American; some of them transport aircraft of various models and ages, and some transformed bombers. When the New Guinea campaign opened in September, the directorate helped move thousands of troops by air while undertaking the direct air supply of all forward combat forces.10
When Major Dupuy arrived in May 1942, the headquarters of Lt. Gen. George H. Brett, Commanding General of the Allied Air Forces, encouraged him to set up his office in Sydney, though the transport shuttle inaugurated the previous month by Consolidated made use of the airport at Williamtown, 88 miles to the northeast. Dupuy's activities were placed under the control of the theater air force and more particularly under that of DAT. Priorities, loading policy, and times of departure were fixed by Group Captain Gatty's
office in Melbourne. The handful of enlisted men who did the actual physical work of caring for the transpacific transports while they were in Australia belonged to a unit properly subject to DAT, but, when Millard succeeded Dupuy, he gathered evidence of what he counted unreasonable interference by Gatty's headquarters with the overseas transport operation. With this evidence in September he managed to persuade Maj. Gen. George C. Kenney, the new theater air commander, that ATC operations should be free of Gatty's control.11
Millard's account of the episode does not suggest that Kenney's concession resulted from his acceptance of ATC's new concept of independence from theater control. As Millard reported it, Kenney called personally to ask him how many belly tanks he could send to Plaines des Gaiacs on an ATC LB-30. Millard seized the opportunity to inform the general that he was not permitted to load theater cargo without the permission of Gatty's organization and then went on to give in detail the record of interference which ATC operations had experienced. Two days later—and quite informally—Kenney told Millard, as the latter subsequently recalled the conversation, "I told the group captain that he was busy enough with his internal show and that he had better run that and let Millard run his."12 The Air Transport Command thereby won in the Southwest Pacific Area a greater degree of autonomy, but just how much remained to be seen.
Meanwhile, when theater headquarters moved northward from Melbourne to Brisbane, ATC's operations had been transferred to Amberley Field, 24 miles southwest of the latter city. Amberley now became the terminus for ferried aircraft and the turn-around point for transport planes.13 The small ATC contingent located there, aided by such men as Millard was able to borrow from friendly organizations on the field, handled an increasing volume of traffic as the antipodean spring came on. Earlier, at the time of the Midway battle, the need for the emergency movement of supplies and personnel to Hawaii and of ferrying crews back to California had resulted in the diversion of the five Liberators then in transport service on the Pacific route. When the emergency was over, the Hawaiian Department, without so much as a by-your-leave to Washington headquarters, diverted most of the transport to the task of eliminating the backlog on the run between Hawaii and Australia. Meanwhile mail and personnel for Australia piled up in California. The regular through service had
hardly been restored when Lt. Gen. Delos C. Emmons, Commanding General of the Hawaiian Department, cabled General Arnold that the Hawaiian Air Depot could not properly do its job of engine overhaul for organizations in the Pacific area without adequate air transportation for the delivery of engines. In view of the increased demands for regular air transport from theater commanders, it was fortunate that a delivery of additional four-engine transports, virtually the first C-87's, was made in September. In anticipation of this increment, ATC headquarters looked around for crews. United Air Lines, already flying one of the command's domestic routes, accepted the responsibility. United ground and flight personnel were briefed by Consolidated's experienced representatives, and on 23 September the first United plane left Hamilton Field for Australia. In October and November the two contract carriers placed at Amberley Field a joint maintenance crew of a dozen or so men, who thereupon took over the maintenance responsibilities previously carried by the 22d Service Group of the V Air Force Service Command. By the end of 1942 the two contract carriers were operating a total of 15 Liberator-type aircraft on the route, with a schedule of thirteen round-trip flights weekly between California and Australia. The cargo dispatched westbound from Hamilton Field in December reached a total of 107 tons.14
The new service, though of vital importance, was still far from satisfactory. Little or no provision was made for the comfort of passengers in flight, and the housing and messing facilities available at various points along the route, notably Plaines des Gaiacs, were primitive enough. More serious was the persistent weakness in communications; as late as November, planes leaving Plaines des Gaiacs commonly arrived at their Australian destination before the radio message announcing their approach. It was still impossible to attain full utilization of the available lift, and operations were often hampered by the assertion of authority over priorities by local theater and island commanders.15
In fact, the whole Pacific route operation at the end of 1942 was still, in the eyes of Generals Arnold and George, "very much of a barnstorming setup—without proper organization, standardization, maintenance or discipline."16 In order to bring it up to the desired standard, a major and obvious step forward was necessary—the assignment of a sufficient number of well-qualified personnel under direct ATC control to each of the stations along the route. Two new
ferrying groups and their subordinate squadrons had been duly authorized and activated in California, as early as November 1942, in order to supply personnel for the operation of the ATC bases in Hawaii, Australia, and the intervening points; the Seventh Air Force also had consented to the transfer of its 7th Airways Detachments to the Air Transport Command. In January 1943 the Pacific Wing, commanded by Brig. Gen. William O. Ryan, was established with headquarters at Hickam Field. But ATC faced difficulty in procuring enough qualified personnel to bring up to strength the groups and squadrons it had activated for assignment to South and Southwest Pacific stations. Substantial numbers of men moved out in March, April, and May, and by the end of July 1943 there were nearly three thousand officers and enlisted men assigned to the Pacific Wing. Personnel continued to be shipped out, even in excess of the authorized strength of existing units though not of operational needs, until the War Department, in October 1943, finally approved a manning table which allowed the wing 794 officers, 24 warrant officers, and 6,341 enlisted men.* Meanwhile, with the existing units overstrength, deserved promotions could not be made, and the wing found it difficult, though not impossible, to defend its cries for additional personnel. Nevertheless, at the end of the year the wing's roster showed approximately 5,000 men.17
With the establishment of the Pacific Wing, ATC operations in California and over the air route to Hickam became the sole concern of the Hamilton Field headquarters, now renamed the West Coast Wing. It soon became apparent, however, that the whole route from California to Australia was essentially one and needed a unified command. In May, accordingly, General Ryan was directed to take command of the West Coast Wing as well as of the Pacific Wing, and soon the two organizations were completely merged, with General Ryan's headquarters remaining at Hickam Field.18
Unified control under General Ryan's direction and a modest increase in assigned aircraft and personnel (particularly experienced operations officers) enabled the Pacific Wing, by the end of 1943, to build a better through route. Ryan, who had understood that he was sent out "for the purpose of creating an airline over the Pacific which would handle cargo, passengers, and mail, as well as the movement of combat units and replacement combat crews and airplanes in the safest
* For a discussion of the new exact manning tables, see above, pp. 48-49.
and the most efficient and expeditious manner possible," at the year's end could feel that his mission had been accomplished. In September the transport operations of the contract carriers were at length placed on a regularly scheduled basis, easing the traffic problems at stations along the route and the sporadic demands on major maintenance facilities of Consairways at San Diego and of United Air Lines at San Francisco. One result was the reduction of aircraft time lost for maintenance at the California bases. At the end of the year Consairways reluctantly complied with ATC's demand that it transfer its major maintenance operations to the Fairfield-Suisun Army Air Field, midway between San Francisco and Sacramento.19
During the course of the year the number of transport aircraft assigned to United and Consairways for the Pacific operation rose from 15 to 29, and at the end of December the scheduled traffic along the main line (Hamilton Field to Amberley) amounted to twenty round-trip flights a week. The westbound lift from California, 107 tons in December 1942, had risen to 355 tons in December 1943. Meanwhile ferrying operations had continued apace. During the year ATC had conducted some 1,515 planes, mostly heavy and medium bombers, down the line to General Kenney's Fifth Air Force in Australia, to Maj. Gen. Nathan Twining's Thirteenth Air Force in New Caledonia, or to the Seventh Air Force in the Hawaiian Islands.20
In addition, ATC had undertaken a variety of special missions. When, in May 1943, the Fifth Air Force attributed a series of B-24 crashes to weakness in the plane's horizontal stabilizer, ATC responded to Kenney's appeal for air shipment of modified stabilizers by sending out eight sets to Port Moresby. Because of the size of the stabilizers, a C-54A, normally operated by American Airlines over the Atlantic route, was sent to the Pacific to carry the first half of the consignment and incidentally was the first C-54 to reach those parts. The second consignment of stabilizers was delivered by the first C-54 assigned United for regular contract operation over the Pacific routes.21
During a trip through the Pacific Ocean areas in March and April, General George had committed ATC to special services for both General Kenney in the Southwest Pacific and Lt. Gen. Millard F. Harmon in the South Pacific. For the Southwest Pacific area George agreed to establish an intratheater shuttle running from Port Moresby through Townsville and Amberley Field to Sydney. Served by five
C-47's flown by military crews sent out specifically for the job, the shuttle transported combat personnel of the Fifth Air Force, on leave from New Guinea, to the rest and recreational facilities available at the Australian metropolis. The C-47's, procured from the Troop Carrier Command's allotment, reached Australia in July and were presently put to work. Somewhat oversupplied with crews, who thus did a minimum of flying and a maximum of resting, the shuttle was called the "Sacktime Line." Its morale value was considerable, though at the end of the year DAT and the 54th Troop Carrier Wing were carrying a larger share of the leave personnel.22 Already, at General Harmon's urgent request, ATC in February 1943 had sent out a C-87, operated by United Air Lines personnel, for a similar leave shuttle from Espiritu Santo in the New Hebrides group through Plaines des Gaiacs to Auckland, New Zealand. The one Liberator was entirely insufficient, and most of the combat crews on leave continued to be carried by SOPAC's intratheater air transport organization, the South Pacific Combat Air Transport Command (SCAT). Three C-87's were in service by January 1944, when military crews replaced those supplied by United Air Lines, and the terminus of the operation was pushed northward to Guadalcanal.23
Early in 1942, AAF and Ferrying Command headquarters had been planning an alternate route, or routes, that for safety would run farther south than did the original South Pacific airway. In time, hard fighting on Guadalcanal eliminated the risk that had first inspired the plan, but a secondary consideration survived—the hope that pursuit aircraft might be ferried down to the South Pacific and Southwest Pacific. Various islands and combinations of islands were suggested for these purposes at one time or another, and airfields were constructed below Christmas on Penrhyn Island, at Bora Bora in the Society Islands, and on Aitutaki in the Cook group. Navy air facilities at Tutuila were also made available. However, a proposed assembly depot in the South Pacific was never established, and very few pursuit planes were ferried through the Pacific areas.24 Between 23 December 1942 and 7 January 1943 an experimental flight of nine P-38's, assembled at Hickam Field, was ferried to New Caledonia by Ferrying Division pilots. Two B-24's, en route to Australia, served as lead and weather aircraft, and Capt. Austin F. Lytle, a veteran pilot, went along to co-ordinate the flight. The planes went by way of Hilo, Christmas Island, Canton, Tutuila, and Nandi Airport. The longest
jump from Hilo to Christmas involved a flight of six and a half hours. Difficulties met en route were considered not insurmountable, but no further movements of this sort took place.25
In April 1943, while there was still talk of establishing an assembly point at Bora Bora, the Pacific Wing inaugurated its so-called "milk run," serving bases on the alternate ferrying route. Military crews, flying C-87 aircraft, started at Hickam Field, stopped at Christmas, Penrhyn, Bora Bora, Aitutaki, and Tutuila, and reached the end of the run at Nandi. The "milk run" carried mail, periodicals, films, and miscellaneous supplies to the military and naval personnel stationed on the several islands. It was, in fact, a morale-building service, continuing long after Allied advances had canceled the strategic importance of the islands. As Thirteenth Air Force personnel stationed there moved northward, the "milk run" came to serve primarily ATC detachments and service troops stationed on the islands to make possible ATC operations through them. After plans for the Bora Bora assembly plant were dropped, ATC officers at Hickam Field and at Washington sought relief from this obligation, but theater commanders, the Navy, and the Air Staff were slow to agree. Eventually, the Navy, which had permanent establishments at Tutuila and Bora Bora, agreed to supply a shuttle service from Tutuila to Penrhyn, Bora Bora, and Aitutaki, and in August 1944, the ATC abandoned its "milk run."26
The Main Line Swings Northward
In the winter of 1942-43 the Air Transport Command had been encouraged by Air Staff spokesmen to expect the assignment of from 1,400 to 2,633 transport aircraft during 1943,* and ATC's planners, with imaginations quite capable of contemplating a transport fleet of that magnitude, had been engaged in correspondingly optimistic planning for expansion of its services. Accordingly, when General George traveled through the Pacific areas in March and April of 1943, he predicted that by the end of the year some 127 four-engine aircraft, most of them flown by military crews, would be at work on the Pacific routes. Without curtailing service on the existing main airline, General George and his subordinates proposed to use the additional planes to establish a transport route farther north and nearer combat operations in both the South Pacific and the Southwest Pacific areas. A new main line would run from Canton Island via Funafuti and Espiritu
* See above, pp. 39-40.
Santo to Townsville in Australia. As soon as feasible, it would be extended to Guadalcanal and Port Moresby. General George's itinerary was followed by officers from wing and command headquarters, whose job it was to prepare in detail for the expanded operation.27
The end of the year, however, found the transpacific route served by only 29 ATC transports, still flown by the contract carriers over the old main line. In November, Capt. Richard M. Davis, an alert ATC officer who was the headquarters specialist on Pacific problems, had traveled through the Pacific Wing and conversed with representatives of the theaters concerned. He found the ATC still delivering cargo to the Thirteenth Air Force in New Caledonia, though most of the elements of the Thirteenth had moved or were moving north, and though Guadalcanal was now the main supply point for the South Pacific area. Similarly, he found that Townsville and Port Moresby, the latter more than 1,300 miles north of Brisbane, had supplanted that center as the chief Air Corps supply points for the Southwest Pacific area. No one then expected the Air Transport Command to operate regular schedules into an area of active combat, but Davis considered it hard to defend lagging so far behind the actual advancement of combat areas. Indignant and chagrined at the failure of ATC to adjust its operations to the changed military picture, Davis wrote from Auckland to his immediate superior: "We are largely overshadowed by other air transport agencies which make us look like a peace-time, post-war, commercial air route to Australia, not really involved in the struggle and really 'allergic to combat.'"28 Following his return to Washington, Davis on 18 December submitted a strong report to General George in which he declared:For about six months, the South Pacific and Southwest Pacific areas have represented enormous wastes of air transportation. This has been due, in part at least, to our failure to deliver the goods to the place where they are needed, since every pound of cargo and a great many passengers, carried by us to these theaters, has had to be trans-shipped, at least once, often more, to reach its destination.... In retrospect it is evident that the plan tentatively agreed upon last spring at Hickam of immediately swinging a portion of the Pacific route through Espiritu Santo to Townsville with a view to operations into Guadalcanal and Port Moresby as soon thereafter as practicable should not have been discarded by this headquarters.29
The fact that the responsibility had to be shared by the Pacific Wing, ATC headquarters, and the two theaters most directly concerned may help to explain but does not excuse the failure to swing
the route northward in 1943. The wing had succeeded, notably in its main task of building up a strong main line to Australia, but the effort had too largely absorbed its energies. It had failed to keep closely enough in touch with the combat theaters and their needs. The theaters in turn, though concerned in November to know why ATC operations had not been shifted northward, had been slow to request direct air shipment to their new and more northerly bases. Air Transport Command headquarters had been obliged in June and July 1943 to cut its plans for the Pacific operation sharply and repeatedly when it became apparent that nothing like the expected number of four-engine transports and crews could be sent into the Pacific areas that season. Then, too, it had become necessary to devote all the available resources of the command to meeting the so-called "July-September objective" set for the India-China Wing of the ATC by the President. Even though ATC headquarters diverted every available new crew and plane, especially C-87's, to the India-China Wing, it was December before the President's goal was reached. With this achievement finally in sight, and with Captain Davis' recommendations of 18 December before him, General George turned back to the Pacific problem. On 21 December he adopted that officer's views and in no uncertain manner directed General Ryan to institute at once a service from Canton through Espiritu Santo to Guadalcanal, Port Moresby, and Townsville.30
Even so, it was 10 February 1944 before United Air Lines, using C-54's and C-87's, established a daily service out of Hamilton Field by way of Hickam and Canton to Guadalcanal. Thence half the planes were to fly directly to Townsville, the other half to Townsville via Port Moresby. Until August Consairways continued to serve the Amberley terminal with from seven to eleven trips weekly.31 This first northward swing of the transpacific transport service came so late that it barely missed being an anticlimax. By May 1944, the larger part of United Air Lines' transpacific lift offloaded at Port Moresby had to be picked up by DAT aircraft for transfer, two hundred miles across the Owen Stanley Mountains, to Nadzab, which was fast replacing Port Moresby as the major base of supply for campaigns in northern New Guinea.32
ATC's move into Port Moresby was badly planned and virtually uncoordinated with other interested organizations. Two lieutenants and a handful of enlisted men were sent up to shift for themselves
and somehow to prepare the necessary facilities at the terminus of the new transpacific service to New Guinea. Construction was under way at Ward's Drome, which long had served as terminal of the C-47 leave shuttle, when, a week before the arrival of the first UAL transport, Brig. Gen. Paul H. Prentiss of the 54th Troop Carrier Wing directed the ATC contingent to move to the superior Jackson's Drome, some miles distant. The Fifth Air Force was now on its way out of the area, with the result that new construction was forbidden and normal channels of supply were completely disrupted. The ATC men were able to procure reasonably satisfactory living quarters—by New Guinea standards—only after the movement of another outfit to Nadzab in mid-March. The station was sadly undermanned and overworked in its early months, especially after 3 March, when the transpacific schedules to Port Moresby were doubled to two trips a day. As late as 31 March, there were only three officers and 29 enlisted men at the station.33 That these men did the job required of them in a reasonably satisfactory manner apparently reflected no special credit belonging to Pacific Wing Headquarters. The ATC Air Inspector's representative, who arrived in March, put the situation thus:It seems to be the policy in this Wing to activate a Station by simply writing a general order of activation, and assigning an officer and one or two enlisted men without furnishing them with any written instructions regarding housing and supply or furnishing them with any publications or technical orders. The new commanding officers are not even briefed in their new duties. Consequently when they arrive at their new Stations, they are forced to shift for themselves, and are at the mercy of other components of the AAF, and other commanders who do not regard the ATC in too favorable a manner. This results in the new commanding officer being forced into a system of trade and barter for his requirements. This generally takes the form of trading cigarettes and liquor for the desired services or materials....
It was, accordingly, recommended that wing headquarters in the activation of future stations have an officer, or officers, of sufficient rank and experience visit the proposed base "and make all necessary plans and arrangements with the commanders of the organizations occupying the base at that time."34
At the end of May it was estimated that 80 per cent of all cargo brought into the Southwest Pacific by ATC was directed to the theater's air service command and that 90 per cent of this was destined for Nadzab. By that time, General MacArthur's command had virtually completed its conquest of the key points in northern New Guinea and the lesser islands adjacent. After negotiations between
Col. Richard W. Pears, Wing Operations Chief, and General MacArthur's headquarters, it had been agreed on 24 May that Cons-airways, then operating one and a half round trips daily into Amberley Field, should move its terminus to Nadzab and provide the same number of trips to that destination. Theater representatives agreed that the necessary facilities, supplies, and equipment would be furnished ATC at Nadzab. Following through, a team of high-ranking wing officers flew to Nadzab, where ATC's plans and requirements were discussed exhaustively with the chief of staff of the advanced echelon of the Fifth Air Force, its supply officer, its chief engineer, and the supply officer of the local service command. An operations area and a camp site were selected, necessary technical supply and engineering buildings were requested, and arrangements made for AACS and weather services. In short, wing headquarters, through the aggressive action of its representatives, now demonstrated how well it had learned the lesson taught by the bumbling beginnings at Port Moresby and emphasized by the report of the air inspector thereon. The first ATC cadre, commanded initially by a lieutenant colonel rather than by a lieutenant, arrived at Nadzab on 6 June. It was speedily reinforced; the intratheater service, about to be greatly augmented, was extended from Port Moresby to Nadzab on 23 June; and the Air Service Command assisted with the maintenance load. On 5 August, Consairways began to run two trips daily into Nadzab from Hamilton Field by way of Hickam Field, Canton, and Guadalcanal. Ten days later United Air Lines moved out of Townsville entirely and began a service of two trips daily to Nadzab over the same route. At the same time and on the insistence of the South Pacific and Southwest Pacific theaters, a through service rendered by military crews flying C-54 aircraft over the old route through the Fiji Islands and New Caledonia to Amberley Field on alternate days was set up.35
Thereafter, ATC moved its terminal points forward as the combat forces advanced, but the pattern set at Nadzab for the establishment of new stations could not be followed. Theater agencies, struggling to support a fast-moving combat organization, frequently defaulted on their obligations to ATC—not through ill will, or jealousy, or negligence, or even shortsightedness, but simply through inability to do the job without leaving something more important undone. Thus it was that, on more than one Pacific field, ATC facilities,
housing, mess halls, water systems, and even roadways were constructed by clerks and aircraft maintenance men with a minimum of training and almost no tools for such work. Nor was the position of the ATC unique. The Fifth Air Force, too, repeatedly complained that the airdrome facilities which it required for planned combat operations were provided too late or not at all. The scarcity of engineering units and equipment was very real, and the demands for their services were tremendous. Late in the war the Pacific Division tried two other methods. One was to man a new station, not by a new base unit assembled from various quarters, but by transferring an existing unit bodily from a station where service was no longer required. Then the division secured a pair of self-sufficient mobile construction units, capable of supplying a new station with the requisite facilities in time, but unfortunately they came too late to benefit ATC greatly.36
Intratheater Service in the Southwest Pacific Area
In one active theater of operations after another, circumstances had led to the establishment by the Air Transport Command of scheduled intratheater services, in addition to the long-range, strategic, inter-theater services which constituted the ATC's primary transport mission. The command's largest single operation, the delivery of air cargo from India into China, was such an intratheater service until the breakup of the CBI theater in October 1944. Others were developed as the combat zone moved forward in North Africa during 1943-44 and in Europe, especially after the liberation of Paris in August 1944. ATC headquarters felt that no other agency was so well qualified as the ATC itself to provide regularly scheduled transport operations, whether within a single theater or between the Zone of Interior and a particular theater. Eventually, theater commanders came to see in the ATC, if not the best possible agency for supplying intratheater air transportation, at least an organization through which they might acquire additional transport aircraft and crews for some specific function. Into this category fall the requests of Generals Harmon and Kenney for the leave shuttles which the ATC inaugurated in February 1943 to serve the Thirteenth Air Force and in July of the same year to serve the Fifth Air Force.*
By December 1943, General Kenney was casting about for additional
* See above, pp. 182-83.
aircraft of all categories, including transports. Air transportation was especially important in the Southwest Pacific Area. The distances within the Australian continent and from Australian points to New Guinea, the inadequacy of rail and highway facilities throughout the area, the scarcity and vulnerability of available water transport, and the failure as yet to swing ATC's intertheater main line northward, all highlighted the increasing need for air transport. In the direct support of combat operations, troop-carrier groups of the Fifth Air Force performed a host of tactical missions. The Directorate of Air Transport controlled the Australian airlines, several squadrons of the RAAF, and the squadrons of the American 374th Troop Carrier Group. Though primarily responsible for the movement of cargo from the Brisbane area to points north, the military elements under DAT continued to be called upon for direct support of troops in the combat areas. This was in accord with Kenney's policy of flexible use of air transport, but each diversion of this character meant the temporary collapse of the orderly flow of supplies from the rear areas to the depots supplying the combat elements. Forward or back, nevertheless, the several elements of DAT in November 1943 hauled cargo and passengers to the extent of 7,500 tons, more than the ATC tonnage over the Himalayan Hump that same month.37
New Year's Day 1944 found General Kenney and members of his staff, including Col. Ray T. Elsmore, then Director of Air Transport, flying to Washington, where he presented his needs for additional aircraft. In Washington, General Kenney talked to General George about the transport needs of the SWPA and proposed that the ATC set up a pair of transport squadrons to operate under his control with Colonel Elsmore in command. General George favored a scheduled operation in accordance with normal ATC practice and under direct ATC command. He proposed that the ATC, operating approximately a hundred two-engine transports (the use of C-46's was originally contemplated) should take over DAT's operations in the rear areas, thus freeing the latter's troop-carrier squadrons for full-time service forward. Apparently, the two generals reached an agreement that this should be done, though General Kenney later admitted that what he really preferred was the direct allocation to the theater of a comparable number of aircraft and crews.38
Early in March Col. Robert M. Love, Deputy Chief of Staff of the Air Transport Command, went to Australia to continue conversation
with General Kenney regarding necessary arrangements for setting up the proposed intratheater service. Love soon discovered that Kenney was still thinking in terms of the Air Transport Command's providing planes, personnel, and maintenance for a service to be completely controlled by Kenney or by theater headquarters. Informed of this situation, George radioed Kenney, recalling their previous correspondence and conversation and urging that Kenney's program would not produce an efficient air transport operation. With General Arnold's concurrence, he proposed that ATC be given a clearly defined job to do in the SWPA, in which ATC would fly whatever routes and carry whatever cargo General Kenney might direct.39
General Kenney insisted that he must have final control over every plane in the Southwest Pacific Area and that the ATC should enter the intratheater picture with the same status as the other elements which DAT controlled. Colonel Love was supported in his arguments by Maj. Gen. Laurence S. Kuter, Assistant Chief of Air Staff, Plans, who was then in the SWPA, and eventually General Kenney came around to the ATC position and agreed positively that DAT should exercise no command functions over the intratheater service which ATC proposed to render on a route from Melbourne to Nadzab. His message, replying to General George, may be paraphrased in part as follows: "To the extent of their current capacity, your operators will be informed what the job is, where it is, and what the priorities are; we will not, however, tell them how to do it."40
The agreements reached were put into final form on 13 April, when Love addressed an official letter on behalf of his chief to General MacArthur summarizing his understanding of the matter, while General Kenney's chief of staff indicated Kenney's concurrence in a letter addressed to General George. The approval of Lt. Gen. Richard K. Sutherland, MacArthur's chief of staff, was immediately forthcoming, and on 18 April the agreement was formally confirmed in an adjutant general's letter from SWPA headquarters. Here was something closely akin to an exchange of diplomatic notes between two sovereign states, if not to a formal treaty.
Service was to be furnished initially on the route: Brisbane, Townsville, Port Moresby, and Nadzab. ATC indicated its intention of providing a hundred C-47 aircraft for the shuttle, twenty-five each in May, June, July, and August. It was agreed that third- and fourth-echelon
maintenance should be the responsibility of the theater's air service command and that the theater would aid with first- and second-echelon maintenance until ATC could do the job. The V Air Service Command had already ordered the engines, accessories, and spare parts needed to keep the shuttle aircraft in operation. It was agreed that "the appropriate authority designated by the theater will govern what traffic is to be carried, the priorities therefor and the stations between which service is needed, but that operational and administrative control will be exercised by ATC consistent with existing policies and procedures." General Kenney had intended that the Directorate of Air Transport should be the "appropriate authority designated by the theater"; on this, however, he was overruled by General MacArthur's headquarters, which decided that Col. Charles H. Unger, the Chief Regulating Officer of SWPA, should exercise the responsibility.41
Another item in the Kenney-Love agreement, as approved by GHQ, SWPA, called for the organization by ATC of a wing or sector in the Southwest Pacific Area. After some hesitation, ATC headquarters, with AAF and War Department concurrence, determined to elevate all its existing wings to the status of divisions and to organize three wings—the Southwest Pacific, the Central Pacific, and the West Coast Wings—within the Pacific Division. General Ryan became division commander, and Brig. Gen. Edward H. Alexander, who had been the first executive officer of the Ferrying Command, air adviser to General Stilwell in the CBI theater, and commanding general successively of ATC's India-China and Caribbean Wings, was selected to command the Southwest Pacific Wing. Meanwhile, Col. Chester Charles, ATC commanding officer at Townsville, and one of the ablest officers in the Pacific Wing, was ordered to take charge of preparations for the intratheater operation.42
With the aid of wing headquarters and with the best of co-operation from SWPA personnel, Colonel Charles perfected plans for inaugurating the service. The first of the planes and crews destined for the operation reached Amberley Field on 3 June, and subsequently went on to Nadzab. On 26 June the new intratheater service was inaugurated, and by the end of the month it was supplying four round trips daily, in addition to a daily Sydney-to-Nadzab leave shuttle.43
On 5 July General Alexander arrived in Australia to assume command
of the proposed Southwest Pacific Wing. By 1 August he had eliminated a maintenance bottleneck by arranging for the air shipment of a hundred and fifty mechanics from Hamilton Field, and other badly needed personnel had been procured. Some 76 C-47's were on hand, and the remaining 29 were already en route. Within another week, the new wing was operating seventeen C-47 schedules daily between Australia and New Guinea; and Finschhafen had already been added to the points served. In addition, General Mac-Arthur had given the wing operational control of two C-54's which the ATC had supplied him earlier in the year for a series of special missions to Mindanao. These planes were providing service on alternate days between Brisbane and Hollandia. Generals MacArthur, Sutherland, and Kenney had all expressed their satisfaction with ATC's entrance into the theater with the corollary hope that it would release existing troop-carrier units for tactical operations. None of General Alexander's requests for assistance had been refused. Meanwhile, requests for additional schedules were piling up, though Alexander took the position that none should be added until he had enough planes and men to keep it going.44
The jurisdiction of the Southwest Pacific Wing was expanded in August to take in another intratheater operation, arranged in May between South Pacific Area headquarters and Colonel Pears to relieve SCAT of its rear-area responsibilities. In SOPAC the ATC with fifteen C-47's based at Guadalcanal had inaugurated in July five daily schedules each way between Tontouta, Espiritu Santo, and Guadalcanal. The South Pacific and Central Pacific areas were shortly combined under the designation of the Pacific Ocean Areas, while the Thirteenth Air Force, chief ATC customer in the former South Pacific Area, was joined with the Fifth Air Force to constitute the Far Eastern Air Forces under General Kenney's command. It seemed logical, therefore, to place what had originally been two distinct intratheater services under the control of the Southwest Pacific Wing. The more easterly of the two shuttles early devoted a good deal of its lift to the air evacuation of casualties from Guadalcanal to the general hospital at Espiritu Santo. Subsequently, hospital facilities at Guadalcanal were built up, and between September and January the wing's C-47's evacuated numerous casualties of the Palau campaign from Manus Island via Los Negros to Guadalcanal and Finschhafen.
Many patients continued to be transferred from Guadalcanal to Espiritu Santo and Tontouta.45
The function of the SWP Wing was to aid the combat forces in every way that organized military air transport might, excepting only tactical operations. Encouraged by the zeal of General Alexander, the wing's story from the beginning of the intratheater service in June 1944 until Luzon had been made secure a year later was highlighted by constant revision of schedules for the ATC fleet of C-47's as their services were repeatedly advanced into more forward areas. As early as August 1944, 70 percent of the traffic carried by the entire Pacific Division originated at stations within the Southwest Pacific Wing.46
The original main artery—Brisbane-Townsville-Nadzab—was extended northwest to Hollandia in September, while service south of Townsville was cut. A new shuttle was begun in eastern New Guinea, from Nadzab to Milne Bay via Lae, Finschhafen, and Dobodura. In October, with nothing but mopping-up operations left for the ground forces in New Guinea, Hollandia became the jumping-off point for new landings in Leyte. In preparation for the move, wing aircraft shuttled men and material about from point to point at the behest of GHQ, SWP A. At the beginning of September they flew a portion of General MacArthur's headquarters from Brisbane to Hollandia, making it possible for GHQ to carry on with the loss of only half a day's work. A month later General Alexander, eager to maintain the intimate relationship between wing and theater headquarters, moved to Hollandia, where his headquarters opened officially on 19 October.47
Almost at that moment American troops were landing on Leyte, and a month later General Alexander moved thither, this time preceding by a few days the portion of GHQ which was flown in by ATC. The movement of GHQ personnel and cargo proceeded smoothly for two of the three days, 26-28 November, which had been set aside for the movement. On the evening of the 27th, four C-54's and four C-47's were loaded, ready to take off early on the 28th, when the Chief Regulating Officer, GHQ, was notified that 16 tons of critical ordnance materiel, must reach Leyte the next day. He decided to dispatch the ordnance materiel instead of the loads already aboard the C-54's, and with the aid of practically every man on the ATC base at Hollandia the transfer was completed in about
two hours. The movement of GHQ's air echelon was completed on 30 November. Wing personnel moved up to Leyte largely by water-borne transportation, with some confusion in the order of arrival of the several shipments. The air echelon flew up during the first week of the new year, and on 6 January, wing headquarters was officially reopened amid the mud and rice paddies of Tacloban airfield. In the final move of wing headquarters to Manila, the echelons arrived in proper order, and headquarters opened in its new location on 25 March. Between 12 and 14 April the wing aided in a third forward movement of GHQ, flying some 822 men from Leyte to Manila. Finally, between 28 April and 2 May, wing aircraft in a total of forty trips transferred the headquarters of General Kenney's Far Eastern Air Force to Manila.48
When the first ATC detachment arrived at Leyte on 31 October, the Tacloban airstrip, with over two hundred fighter and bomber aircraft jammed into the available standing room and with enemy air attacks routine, was still very much in the combat area. Well into the new year, the continuing campaign restricted sharply the number of ATC landings which could be permitted at Tacloban. Nevertheless, the wing in November 1944 made thirty-six trips into Leyte, fifteen with C-54's, and twenty-one with C-47 aircraft. At the beginning of February 1945, schedules called for ten daily arrivals there of intratheater aircraft. Nadzab and Port Moresby had been virtually abandoned by ATC at the beginning of the preceding December, by which time the transpacific transport service had moved its major terminal to Biak, and the intratheater service now counted as its key stations Biak, Hollandia, and Finschhafen, in that order.49 The transportation of personnel was an especially important function for the SWP Wing; in each of the four months extending from October 1944 through January 1945, the number of passengers carried exceeded thirty thousand. In every month of the wing's history the weight of passengers and their baggage hauled was considerably in excess of that of miscellaneous cargo. The passengers included troops on their way to combat, VIP's headed either way, and many thousands of casualties on their way back to hospitals in the theater or beyond. The amount of mail carried fluctuated; in May 1945 it amounted to nearly 20 per cent of the total airlift. As the wing moved nearer to the advancing front, the combat forces had little except battle casualties to ship back. In April and May 1945, northbound
planes of the wing were loaded to 95 per cent of their capacity; on the backhaul the figure for both months was only 49 per cent. During its first full year of service, the wing's pilots set a phenomenal safety record—290,000,000 passenger miles flown without a single fatality.50Enemy action was still in progress on the Quezon airstrip at Manila, and Japanese forces were still in Manila City, when the first ATC plane reached that area on 16 February 1945. By June, with the liberation of the archipelago substantially accomplished, the need for the wing's intratheater service had declined sharply. ATC personnel were removed from all bases in Australia, except that near Brisbane, which remained the terminus for twice-weekly services from California and from Manila. In July the roll-up of all New Guinea bases got under way, and Southwest Pacific Wing personnel were made available for transfer to the hard-pressed Central Pacific Wing.51
Expanded Operations, 1944-45
The rapid northward shift during 1944 of the Southwest Pacific terminus of the transpacific operations—from Brisbane to Townsville and Port Moresby, from both to Nadzab, and then to Biak—was the prelude to further movements by which the entire transpacific service was swung northward and materially shortened. Early in January 1944, ATC C-54's, which since the preceding November had been evacuating casualties of the campaign for Tarawa, moved forward to a base on that island for the evacuation of casualties in the ensuing campaign for control of the Marshall Islands. By the end of May air evacuation planes were landing at Kwajalein, chief of the Marshalls, and the next month found them flying eastward with some eight hundred patients, mostly men wounded in the battle for Saipan. By mid-August they were loading patients on Saipan itself. In November the air evacuation planes began going into Leyte on a special mission basis, sending patients eastward to Saipan or even, via Kwajalein, Johnston Island, and Oahu, to California.52
Air evacuation planes carried cargo and passengers on their westward flights, and the air evacuation routes soon became those of general transpacific air transport operations. Thus on 15 December 1944 the first regularly scheduled transport service was instituted between Hamilton Field and Leyte by way of the central Pacific. Guam soon became the major ATC base in the Marianas, and from there the first ATC plane flew to Okinawa on 8 April 1945, just a
week after the initial landings there of the Tenth Army. The service thus inaugurated had. been carefully planned to combine the delivery of vital supplies with the evacuation of casualties. Meanwhile, the route from California to the Southwest Pacific Area through Tarawa, Los Negros, and Biak had been extended early in March to Leyte.53
The story of the later operations of ATC in the Pacific, however, is much more than that merely of new or extended flying routes. Much of the ATC traffic west of Oahu stopped short of the Philippines and the Ryukyus. By January 1945, Guam and Saipan had become major termini for both ferrying and transport operations, as they had become focal points for the direct attack upon the Japanese home islands. Headquarters of the Seventh Air Force was moved to Saipan in December 1944. The next month, Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz, Commander-in-Chief, Pacific Ocean Areas, moved his headquarters from Oahu to Guam. Since October, the ATC had been helping move XXI Bomber Command to its station in the Marianas, where its B-29's began on 25 November 1944 its attack on the Japanese homeland. In January 1945 the Central Pacific Wing transferred its headquarters from Hickam Field to Guam.54
The establishment of the XXI Bomber Command in its island bases and the support of its strategic bombing operations constituted a major part of the Central Pacific Wing's mission, as of the ATC in the Pacific. Briefly, it involved monitoring the delivery of B-29 bombers by combat crews to their Marianas bases, the moving by transport aircraft of the air echelon of the several wings of that command, and the constant support of its bombing operations by scheduled air transport service from the homeland. The responsibilities of the ATC in ferrying the big bombers and in transporting men and materiel from the United States or Oahu did not differ in kind from those made familiar through earlier service for the Fifth or the Far Eastern Air Forces. The only significant variation lay in the bigness and top-secret character of the very-long-range bombers, in the magnitude of the movement, and in the well-founded hope that they might serve to shorten the war materially. In any event, the movement illustrated almost classically the role of strategic air transportation in support of strategic bombing.
In preparation for ferrying the B-29's, the Air Transport Command had acquired Mather Field near Sacramento, California, as a point of departure and had spotted B-29 parts at John Rodgers Airport
(Naval Air Station, Honolulu), on Kwajalein, and at Saipan, the major ATC stations on the proposed route. A special engineering detachment, whose members had been carefully trained in the maintenance of B-29 aircraft, was sent out to instruct maintenance personnel along the route. Heavy maintenance equipment required in maintaining the huge bombers was procured and moved by water to the several bases. Special precautions were taken to guard the security of the movement. As always it was necessary to process and brief the combat crews who were to fly their own planes across the Pacific. The B-29 groups were in general better prepared for the long over-water flight than most of the tactical outfits which had preceded them; but, for many crews, flying the Pacific was itself a major adventure, and all that could be done by way of careful briefing or to stimulate the confidence of the fliers was very much to the good. Begun early in October, the movement proceeded with little delay, and by the end of the month some 58 of the heavy bombers had reached Saipan. Eighty B-29's went through in November, 104 in December, and 127 in January 1945. The flow continued into 1945, and in June the XXI Bomber Command received a record total of 237 B-29's, including the thousandth Superfortress to make the flight.55
The growing ability of the United States during 1944 and 1945 to concentrate troops and aircraft in the Pacific reflected the upsurge of industrial production, as well as the approaching end of the war in Europe. The peak in transpacific ferrying, not only of B-29's but of aircraft generally, was reached in June 1945. In that month 570 planes were flown out from California for delivery, chiefly to the combat air forces. Total deliveries of aircraft rose from 1,592 in 1943 to 2,545 in 1944 and to more than 3,200 in the first eight months of 1945.56 More spectacular was the increased size and capacity of ATC's Pacific transport fleet. In January 1944, military crews assigned to the Pacific Wing were operating on the Tarawa-Hickam run five C-54's especially designed for and assigned to the air evacuation of casualties. United Air Lines was flying nine more C-54's under contract on the transpacific route. Between them, United and Consairways had a total of nineteen Liberator-type planes in the through transport service between the United States and Australia.57 Before the end of 1944, not only was ATC planning on a Pacific fleet of
160 four-engine planes but the attainment of that objective was already in sight. United Air Lines had gradually exchanged its C-87's for C-54's, as they became available, and since August had operated a fleet of twenty C-54's. Consairways at the year's end had a total of fifteen C-87's in service. Both of the contract carriers achieved a remarkably high record in the daily utilization of aircraft assigned to them. The greatest increase in the airlift over the Pacific came, however, from the additional C-54 aircraft operated by military crews. This fleet grew from 7 in February, to 30 in August, to 86 in December 1944, and to 130 in April 1945.58
By June 1945, OPD had approved an airlift in the following December of 3,759 tons monthly from Hawaii to the forward areas. To meet this requirement, ATC estimated that it would need a total of 243 four-engine transports and personnel to the number of 42,000 by the end of the year, with physical facilities in proportion. At the end of July, military crews were flying a total of 147 C-54's on the Pacific routes, the contract carriers between them 38 four-engine aircraft. The weight of cargo, passengers, and mail carried had climbed steadily. In December 1943 the actual lift westbound from the Hawaiian Islands—always larger than the haul from California to Hawaii, thanks to the smaller load of fuel required—amounted to 494 tons. The next December it was 1,618 tons, and in July 1945 it reached the imposing figure of 3,483 tons.59
Back in 1943, when it had seemed all but impossible to meet the personnel needs of ATC's Pacific operation, and when OPD was cutting down on ATC's manning table requests for the Pacific Wing, General George remarked to a key wing officer that, when German resistance collapsed, "They will pour such heat on in the Pacific that we will have all we can do to handle it."60 He predicted that ATC would be able to write its own ticket on requirements, with no questions asked. So indeed it proved, and that in advance of the German collapse. Personnel assigned to the Pacific Wing at the beginning of 1944 totaled hardly 5,000. By July the 10,000 mark was passed, and by the end of October this figure had more than doubled, to enable the three wings of the reorganized Pacific Division to carry the added load involved in the B-29 movement, the increased support given the Seventh Air Force, the growth of air evacuation activities, and the expansion of the Southwest Pacific Wing's shuttles in preparation for the Philippine invasion, not to mention the enlarged transpacific
transport operation. During the early months of 1945, division personnel continued to increase, though at a lower rate. By the end of April, the roster included over 24,000 men and women; at the end of July, over 27,000. In August, however, with assignment of many more aircraft and the transfer to ATC of command jurisdiction over the Hawaiian Air Depot and Hickam Field, it jumped to 37,600, and in September to over 41,600 officers and enlisted personnel. The tremendous growth of the Pacific Division made a further reorganization inevitable. The authority of the several wing commanders was strengthened while the division commander, who surrendered some functions and staff personnel to the wings, retained effective over-all control of the entire operation.61
To speed up redeployment for the final push against Japan, ATC headquarters at the beginning of summer in 1945 made three proposals which were put into effect: (1) a vigorous attempt to increase the use of aircraft already assigned to the Pacific Division; (2) the routing of new C-54's assigned to the India-China Division westward across the Pacific; and (3) a shift from the Atlantic to the Pacific of the maintenance services through which the India-China Division had heretofore returned its C-54's to Morrison Field in Florida for engine changes and 600-hour checks. Early in July, representatives of the command presented to General Arnold and then to General Marshall a plan for the further augmentation of the Pacific airlift that was projected well into 1946. This plan called for the immediate diversion of some 196 planes from the GREEN PROJECT in the North Atlantic* and, after November, of large numbers of new aircraft originally intended for the India-China Division. But such sweeping measures were not considered necessary. In order to meet an estimated need for air transport of 10,000 combat troops monthly above prior commitments, from the United States to forward areas in the Pacific, ATC during the early days of August shifted some 95 C-54's from its North Atlantic and North African services and from the Ferrying Division to its Pacific routes. This last program for expanding the Pacific airlift was known to ATC personnel as the PURPLE PROJECT.62
Meanwhile the scope of ATC's Pacific schedules increased to a point which must have seemed fabulous to the men whose memory of military air transport in the Pacific ran back to 1942. Schedules
* See below, pp. 216–25.
published at the beginning of August 1945 called for six daily shuttle flights, four with LB-30's and two with C-54's, between the West Coast and Hickam Field, nine C-54 flights daily between the West Coast and the Marianas, in addition to three between Hickam Field and the Marianas. Five C-54 flights daily were scheduled to run from the West Coast to Okinawa, and five more from the West Coast to Manila. An additional daily shuttle linked the Marianas with Manila. Consairways' LB-30's provided one daily schedule to Biak and another to Guadalcanal. Twice weekly, Consairways continued to run a flight over the old route from California to Australia. In all, there were twenty-seven round-trip flights scheduled daily between California and Oahu; twenty-four and a fraction between Oahu and forward points in the Pacific.63 Because aircraft operations depend on weather and on the mechanical condition of the available planes, flights were not always operated as scheduled. By the end of hostilities, however, the Pacific Division made it a practice to stage spare C-54's at key stations, in order to keep cancellations from mechanical causes to a minimum. Desperate and moderately successful measures had also been taken to improve the quality of maintenance given the military C-54's; as a result, the aircraft utilization record of the division crept up slowly during the first half of 1945.64
At the beginning of August 1945 the operations of the Pacific Division were still geared to the continuing needs of General Spaatz's United States Strategic Air Force and to the buildup of General MacArthur's U.S. Army Forces in the Pacific, which had been charged with invasion of the island of Kyushu on 1 November 1945. The division also supplemented the airlift supplied by NATS to Admiral Nimitz, the Navy's Commander-in-Chief for the Pacific. Plans for the coming invasion of the Japanese home islands assigned to ATC no new or distinctive responsibilities, but the situation became suddenly quite different with the brightening prospect that Japan might surrender in advance of the invasion. In July General MacArthur's staff had begun preparation of a plan, coded BLACKLIST, for the occupation of Japan in the event of an early surrender. Early in August, General Arnold urged Kenney to include the extensive use of heavy transport aircraft in the occupation program and promised 180 C-54's for that purpose by 15 August. Accordingly,
BLACKLIST was expanded to include BAKER-SIXTY, which proposed the use of transport planes to land the 11th Airborne Division and perhaps the 27th Infantry Division, as well as advanced echelons of GHQ, the Far Eastern Air Forces, and other headquarters, in a critical portion of the Tokyo plain.
The Far Eastern Air Forces, which was placed in operational control of the project, was to supply 100 C-47's and 272 C-46's; the Air Transport Command at least 180 operational C-54's, General Alexander, whose Southwest Pacific Wing was then "rolling up" its bases in New Guinea and Australia, and transferring personnel to the Central Pacific Wing, was summoned to MacArthur's headquarters on 9 August and informed of the role which ATC was intended to play. Two days later, General Ryan placed him in full charge of ATC's part of the operation. ATC headquarters in Washington, first apprised of the project in a series of urgent messages from Alexander on 13 August, promptly gave the needed authority for the diversion of ATC aircraft. To prevent confusion, General Ryan shortly designated all activity relating to the concentration of ATC aircraft in the western Pacific area and their mission there as the Pacific Division's MISSION 75.65
Aircraft operated by military crews were speedily withdrawn from the transpacific schedules, which were left to the planes operated by Consairways and United Air Lines. Some 33 C-54's from the North Atlantic Division, 38 from the North African Division, and 16 drawn from the Ferrying Division and new production converged upon Kadena airfield in Okinawa. New Skymasters being ferried westward to the India-China Division were diverted, in defiance of conventional ATC doctrine but with the blessing of ATC headquarters. Soon General Alexander had at his direct disposal a grand total of 202 C-54's. By the end of the month the C-54's operated by military crews under Pacific Division orders totaled 267, not including the 41 four-engine transports flying with United Air Lines and Consairways crews.66
On 14 August the first MISSION 75 aircraft flew from Nichols Field at Manila to Okinawa, where Kadena, constructed as an advanced base for B-29's but as yet unused for that purpose, offered a magnificent 7,500-foot coral runway and with ninety hardstands, each capable, with crowding, of accommodating two Skymasters. Except for these fundamentals, however, the airfield "was completely unadorned by any works of man." Communications equipment was
quickly set up and a control tower built. Tentage supplied essential housing. Ground transportation and messing facilities capable of serving thousands of hot meals daily were provided by the co-operation of various organizations, notably elements of the 59th Air Service Group. Spare parts were assembled for emergency maintenance. Maximum load limits, 25- and 50-hour checks, and pilot qualifications minima were all waived for the time being. Arrangements were made for the aircraft to receive their 100-hour checks at Harmon Field on Guam. Weather data were supplied by destroyers of the U.S.N.'s Seventh Fleet, stationed at intervals of 100 miles along the route. A weather squadron moved over from Manila to give the best possible synoptic weather information for the briefing of flight crews. The 54th Troop Carrier Wing, delegated by FEAF to supervise the entire operation, prepared an elaborate flight plan, calling for take-offs from Kadena at three-minute intervals. D Day, planned for 26 August, was postponed until 30 August on account of typhoon weather in the Ryukyus and in the areas approaching Honshu itself. By 28 August, however, the weather had cleared; on that day 15 ATC C-54's and 30 Troop Carrier C-47's, laden with aviation gasoline, oil, and a handful of FEAF communications men, made what might be termed an orientation and supply flight to the designated Japanese target, Atsugi Airport, 16 miles southwest of Tokyo.67
Promptly on 30 August the operation proper began. Thirteen days later it was brought to a successful conclusion, without a single fatal aircraft accident. In 1,336 C-54 flights, the 11th Airborne Division (reinforced), the 27th Infantry Division, the advanced echelons of General MacArthur's headquarters, of Far Eastern Air Forces, and of the Eighth Army, plus the initial ATC detachment, were flown into Atsugi airdrome. In all, over 23,000 troops, 924 jeeps, 9 disassembled liaison aircraft, 329 other vehicles and pieces of equipment, including tractors, bulldozers, and 6 × 6 trucks, made the flight from Okinawa to Atsugi. In addition, 2,348 barrels of gasoline and oil and rations to the amount of over 900 tons were offloaded at Atsugi. More than seven thousand released prisoners of war and internees of sixteen different nationalities were brought back to Okinawa, on the first or second lap of their repatriation journeys. In addition to these primary aspects of the movement, ATC personnel performed two related special missions at the request of General MacArthur's headquarters. On 19 August Col. Earl T. Ricks, ATC Director of Operations for MISSION
75, flew the Japanese armistice delegates from Ie Shima near Okinawa to Manila; the next day he returned them to Ie Shima. Then, on 23-24 August, another ATC crew flew to Vladivostok in order to carry to Manila Lt. Gen. Kuzma M. Derevyanko, Russian representative to the pre-surrender conference, and his staff.68
MISSION 75 was a magnificent demonstration of what could be done with the transport aircraft of 1945 and a magnificent climax to the role which air transport had played in the Pacific war. Yet its significance should not be exaggerated. On the best day of the landings, with the combined efforts of the 54th Troop Carrier Wing and ATC, no more than seventy-five hundred men were offloaded. In the face of active resistance, nothing like this number could have been landed, and those landed unquestionably would have been overwhelmed by the defenders. In short, the project was feasible only in the absence of effective opposition.69
Contents * Previous Chapter (6) * Next Chapter (8)
1 The ATC in the Southwest Pacific, pp. 11, 25-27; The ATC in the Pacific, 1942, pp. 132-49; PACD, Chronology of Transpacific Routes, pp. 1-14; memo for all Div. & Sing. Comdrs. from Col. R. M. Love, sub.: ATC Route Mileage outside the United States, 12 July 1943.
2 Administrative Hist. of the Ferrying Command, pp. 63-67, 70, 76-79; ATC in the Pacific, 1942, pp. 8, 42-45, 100-104; Hist. the West Coast Wg., AAF, ATC (Durno), p. 13.
3 ATC in the Pacific, 1942, esp. graph ff. p. 99, and also pp. 58, 114-20, 158.
4 Ibid., pp. 121-24. Cf. the rather sweeping claims made. See also Hist. of the Caribbean Div., ATC, Part II, pp. 196-97.
5 R&R, ACFC to OCAC, Material Div., sub.: Delivery of B-25 Airplanes to Netherlands East Indies, 28 Jan. 1942, esp. Comment 3, ACFC to OCAC, 6 Feb. 1942.
6 Ibid.; memo for Gen. Arnold from Brig. Gen. Robert Olds, sub.: Delivery of Dutch B-25's, 25 Feb. 1942; memo for Lt. Col. Orlady from Capt. Robert .M. Love, sub.: Return of Ferry Crews from Australia, 19 Mar. 1942; memo for Lt. Gen. Brehon Somervell from W. C. Teagle, Jr., sub.: Freight Ferrying System to Australia, 19 Mar.1942; R&R, Arnold to George, .: Ferry Service Between Honolulu and Australia, 29 Mar. 1942.
7 ATC in the Southwest Pacific, pp. 12-16, and documents there cite; ATC in the Pacific, 1942, pp. 172-78.
8 ATC in the Pacific, 1942, pp. 54-62.
9 ATC in the Southwest Pacific, pp. 16-18, 25-28, 34-36; ATC in the Pacific, 1942, pp. 51-53, 62-76.
10 ATC in the Southwest Pacific, pp. 29-34, 47-48; AHS-17, Air Action in the Papuan Campaign, 21 July 1942—23 Jan. 1943, pp. 66-72; Hist. of the D.A.T. and 322d Troop Carrier Wing, pp. 7-8.
11 ATC in the Southwest Pacific, pp. 25-45.
12 Ltr., Millard to Brig. Gen Wm. O. Ryan, 10 Jan. 1944.
13 ATC in the Southwest Pacific, pp. 50-55.
14 Memo for Brig. Ge. L. S. Kuter from Brig. Gen. H. L. George, sub.: Policy concerning Control of Aircraft Assigned to AFAFC for the Operation of Established Air Transportation Services, 16 June 1942; memo for Col. R. C. Smith and Lt. Col. R. M. Love from Col. L. G. Fritz, sub.: Transportation from San Francisco to Australia, 2 July 1942; msg #1734, Lt. Ge. Delos C. Emmons to CG, AAF, 24 July 1942; R&R, Arnold to George, sub.: Transportation of Personal Mail between San Francisco and Hawaii, 28 July 1942, esp. Comment 2, George to Arnold, 30 July 1942; ATC in the Pacific, 1942, pp. 196-202, 277 (n. 278); ATC in the Southwest Pacific, pp. 53, 56, 79-80.
15 ATC in the Pacific, 1942, pp. 180-82, 211-15, 229-49; ATC in the Southwest Pacific, p. 72; Pacific Wg. Monthly Activity Rpt. to CG ATC, 20 Nov. 1942.
16 Ltr., Ryan to Smith, 9 Mar. 1943.
17 Admin. Hist. of ATC, June 1942—Mar. 1943, pp. 56-57; ATC in the Southwest Pacific, pp. 95-99; ATC in the Pacific, 1942, pp. 80-93; Hist., Pacific Div., 1 Jan. 1943—30 June 1944, pp. 22-24, 34-46, esp. Table I and graphs included, See also, ltrs., Ryan to CG ATC, sub.: Proposed Manning Tables, Pacific Wing, 5 May 1943; and attached "Personnel Requirement Analysis, Pacific Wing, ATC, as of 31 December 1943"; ltr., Brig. Gen. Bob E. Nowland, C/S, ATC to CG AAF, sub.: Reorganization of the Pacific Wing, Air Transport Command, 20 Aug. 1943.
18 Admin. Hist. of ATC, June 1942—Mar. 1943, pp. 54-56; Admin Hist. of ATC, Mar. 1943—July 1944, pp. 70-72;/ Hist., Pacific Div., 1 Jan. 1943-30 June 1944, pp. 16-22, 24-28.
19 Ltr., Ryan to Smith, 9 Mar. 1943; memo for Ryan from Lt. Col. S. W. Delany sub.: Observations and Recommendations Resulting from Inspection Trip to the Pacific Wing, 19 Aug. 1943; memo for Fritz from Delany, sub.: Observation and Recommendations Resulting from Inspection Trip to the Pacific Wing, 30 Aug. 1943; memo for Gen. George from Capt. Richard. M. Davis, sub.: The Pacific Route, 18 Dec. 1943; West Coast Wg., Hist. Record Rpt., 1 Jan. 1943—30 June 1944, pp. 102-4.
20 Table PACD Westbound Traffic Movement, prepared by ATC Office of Sta. Control, 6 Mar. 1945; PACD, Chronology of Transpacific Routes, p. 12; ltr., Col. H. H. Harries to United Air Lines Transport Corps., sub.: Summary of Operations of the Air Transport Command, 1943, [so] Jan. 1944; Consolidate Aircraft Corp., "Australian Route Statistical Summary," Dec. 1944.
21 Msg., A5058, Kenny to [?], 5 June 1943, in ATC General's Log; memo for Capt. La Farge from Davis, 14 July 1943; Notes on Transpacific Flight, June 21 to July 4, 1943, C-54 Airplane #284, in MATS Hist. File.
22 Ltr., Davis to Lt. Col. Rex W. D. Smith, sub.: Activities of the West Coast and Pacific Wings for the Week Ending April 30, 1943, 1 May 1943; memo for George from Davis, sub.: The Pacific Route, 18 Dec. 1943; ATC in the Southwest Pacific, pp. 108-10, 129-34, 148-49.
23 Memo for George from Davis, sub.: The Pacific Route, 18 Dec. 1943; ATC in the Southwest Pacific Route, pp. 105-8 and map ff. p. 148.
24 Various notes in Pacific Theater Officer's Log File, 1942; mimeographed paper, "The Pacific Ferry Route," dated 20 Jan. 1943; memo for CG ATC from Brig. Gen. T. J. Hanley, Jr., AC/AS, A-4, sub.: Ferrying Fighter Aircraft in the South Pacific, 4 Sept. 1942; ltr., Col. M. S. Lawton, Chief Exec., Pacific Wing, to CG ATC, sub.: Facilities at Present and Proposed Air Transport Command Stations, 31 Aug. 1943, inclosing report on each, signed by Capt. Robert M. Wagner; Summary of Operations of the Air Transport Command, 1943, p 15.
25 Ltr., Lytle to Col. R. C. Blessley, sub.: Completion of Delivery of P-38's 13 Jan. 1943; R&E, George to Hanley, sub.: Flight Delivery of P-38 Aircraft over South Pacific, 4 Feb. 1943.
26 PACD, Chronology of Transpacific Route, pp. 7-27; memo for CG ATC from Maj. M. A. MacIntyre, sub.: Attached Minutes of Wing Headquarters Conferences on April 19 and Action Taken Thereon, 14 May 1943; memo for George from Davis, sub.: The Pacific Route, 18 Dec. 1943; memo for Ryan from Davis, 12 Feb. 1944; memo for Ryan from Davis, sub.: Report of ATC Headquarters Activities for the Period 12 Feb. to 24 Feb. 1944, 24 Feb. 1944; unsigned note for Col. Bailen, sub.: Possibilities for Eliminating Duplication of ATC and NATS Facilities in the Pacific, 27 June 1944; ltr., Smith to CG AAF, sub.: Discontinuance ATC "Milk Run," 20 July 1944, and 1st Ind., Brig. Gen. Patrick W. Timberlake, DC/AS, to CG ATC, 12 Aug. 1944; msg. #7442, George to C/S, ATC, 27 Mar. 1943; msg., PAW 4146A3, Ryan to George, 11 Apr. 1943, in ATC General's Log.
27 ATC in the Southwest Pacific, pp. 103-5, 117; memo for CG ATC from MacIntyre, sub.: Attached Minutes of Wing Headquarters Conference on April 18 and Action Taken Thereon, 14 May 1943; ltr., Lawton to CG ATC, sub.: Facilities at Present and Proposed Air Transport Command Stations, 31 Aug. 1943, and inclosed report on each signed by Capt. Robert M. Wagner.
28 Ltr., Davis to Live, 12 Nov. 1943; ATC in the Southwest Pacific, p. 122; PACD, Chronology of Transpacific Routes, pp. 11-12.
29 Memo for George from Davis, sub.: The Pacific Route, 18 Dec. 1943.
30 Ibid.,; ATC in the Southwest Pacific, pp 183-88.
31 ATC in the Southwest Pacific, pp. 181-90; PACD, Chronology of Transpacific Routes, pp. 13-30.
32 ATC in the Southwest Pacific, pp. 192-93.
33 Ibid., pp. 209-11, 224-26.
34 Ltr., Lt. Col. Bennett H. Griffin to CG ATC, sub.: Report of Administrative, Technical and Communications Inspection of Station No. 20, Pacific Wg. ATC, A.P.O. #929, 27 Mar. 1944, quoted in ATC in the Southwest Pacific, pp. 222-23.
35 ATC in the Southwest Pacific, pp. 228-39, 231-35, 309-12, 317-19, 322-25, 328-40, 361-62.
36 Hist., PACD, ATC, Feb.-Apr. 194, pp. 51-65; May-Sept. 1945, pp. 21-27 and esp. App. 11; ltr., Lt. Gen. George C. Kenney to Maj. Gen. Ennis C. Whitehead, 26 June 1944; ltr., Whitehead to Lt. Gen. Walter Krueger, 8 Aug. 1944; Air Evacuation of Sick and Wounded by the Pacific Wg. ATC, 5 Jan. 1943—30 June 1944, pp. 1-8, 10-13, 23.
37 ATC in the Southwest Pacific, pp. 231-33, 256-58, 262-63, 271-76.
38 Ibid., pp. 276-87, and documents there quoted at length; George C. Kenney, General Kenney Reports (New York, 1949), p. 339.
39 ATC in the Southwest Pacific, pp. 279-85, and documents there quoted..
40 Ibid., pp. 285-89 and documents there quoted.
41 Ibid., pp. 295-301, 312-17.
42 Ibid., pp. 294-95, 296, 299-302, 319, 436-52.
43 Ibid., pp. 219-38, 346-48.
44 Ibid., pp. 346, 352-56, 359-61, 363-65, 379, and documents cited, esp.: ltr., Alexander to Ryan, 21 July 1944; ltr., Alexander to Ryan, 8 Aug. 1944; and ltr., Alexander to George, 19 Aug. 1944.
45 ATC in the Southwest Pacific, pp. 310, 373-76; Hist., PACW ATC, July 1944, pp. 6-8; Hists., PACD, ATC, Aug. 1944, pp. 10-11; Sept., 1944, pp. 8-10; Oct. 1944, pp. 33-34, 37-38; Jan. 1945, p. 57.
46 Hists., PACD, ATC, Aug. 1944, p. 15; Oct. 1944, p. 3.
47 Hists., PACD, ATC, Sept. 1944, pp. 6-7; Oct. 1944, pp. 3-6, 45 and graph ff. p. 32; ltr., Alexander to Ryan, 25 Nov. 1944; Hist. Red., SWPW, ATC, Oct.- Dec. 1944, pp. 1-16; Hist. Southwest Pacific Wg., 1 Aug. 1944–1 June 1945, pp. 51-64.
48 Hist., PACD, ATC, Nov. 1944, pp. 3-4; Jan. 1945, pp. 1-2; Feb.-Apr. 1945, pp. 4-5, 46, 157; Hist. Rcd. SWPW, ATC, Oct.-Dec. 1944, pp. 30-37; Wkly. Activity Rpt., SWPW, 30 Jan 1945.
49 Hist., PACD, ATC, Nov. 1944, p. 4, and graph ff. p. 16; Hist. Rcd., SWPW, ATC, Oct.0Dec. 1944, pp. 30-37; Wkly. Activity Rpt., SWPW, 30 Jan. 1945.
50 Wkly. Activity Rpt., SWPW, 23 Jan. 1945, and graphic exhibits atched. thereto, summarizing wing traffic to 31 Dec. 1944; Hist., Southwest Pacific Wg., 1 Aug. 1944—1 June 1945, pp. 6-14, esp. graphs ff. pp. 8, 10; SWPW, Special Mission #75, p. 26.
51 Hists., PACD, ATC, Feb.-Apr. 1945, pp. 37-49; May-Sept. 1945, pp. 20, 56-57; PACD Wkly Activity Rpt., 18 June 1945—20 July 1945.
52 Air Evacuation of Sick and Wounded by the Pacific Wing, ATC, 5 Jan. 1943—30 June 1944, pp. 16-23; Hist., PACD, ATC, Aug. 1944, pp. 16-23; Hist., PACD, ATC, Aug. 1944, pp. 17-24; PACD, Chronology of Transpacific Routes, pp. 11-30.
53 PACD, Chronology of Transpacific Routes, pp. 31-42; Hists., PACD, ATC, Sept. 1944; pp. 9-10; Dec. 1944, pp. 12-13; Feb.-Apr. 1944, pp. 50, 56-57, 82-83; May-Sept., pp. 13-14.
54 Hists., PACD, ATC, Oct. 1944, pp. 1, 6-11; Nov. 1944, p. 1; Dec. 1944, pp. 1-4; Jan. 1945, pp. 2-3.
55 Hist., PACD, ATC, Oct. 1944, pp. 6-22; Nov. 1944, pp. 11, 13-14; Dec. 1944, pp. 37-39; Jan. 1945, p. 70; Feb.-Apr. 1945, pp. 151-52; May-Sept. 1945, pp. 121-22.
56 Table, "Ferried Aircraft Deliveries—Pacific Route," prepared by ATC Office of Stat. Control, 28 Feb. 1946. Cf. Hist., PACD, ATC, May-Sept. 1945, pp. 121-22.
57 Table, "C-54 Aircraft Assigned to Pacific Division, Air Transport Command," in Hist., PACD, ATC, May-Sept. 1945, ff. p. 130; ltr., Harris to United Air Lines Transport Corp.,  Jan. 1944; Consairway Div., Consolidated Vultee Aircraft Corp., "Australian Route Statistical Summary," Jan. 1944.
58 Table, "C-54 Aircraft Assigned to Pacific Division, Air Transport Command"; Stat. Control Div., ATC, "Assigned Aircraft," 9 Aug. 1945, p. A-4; "Aircraft Utilization," 23 June 1945, p. AU-4.
59 Ltr., Col. S. E. Gates, AC/S, Plans, ATC, to CG AAF, sub.: Air Transport Command Requirements for Pacific Operations, 5 June 1945; Stat. Control Div., ATC, "Assigned Aircraft," 9 Aug. 1945, p. A-4; table prepared by Office of Stat. Control, ATC, "Pacific Division Westbound Traffic Movement, Hamilton-Hickam," 28 Feb. 1946.
60 Ltr., Capt. R. M. Davis to Ryan, 27 July 1943.
61 Hists., PACD, ATC, Oct. 1944, pp. 47-49; Feb.-Apr. 1945, pp. 14-24 and App. 22; May-Sept. 1945, graph preceding p.21.
62 Memo for DC ATC from Gates, sub.: Means of Increasing Airlift to the Western Pacific, 28 June 1945; "Estimates of Passenger Lift To Be Developed West of Hawaii," 9 July 1945, and atched. office memo; ATC Staff Mtg. Min., 7 Aug. 1945, 10 Aug. 1945; ATC Monthly Rpt., 16 Aug. 1945; msg., ATC 2050, ATC Plans Div. to CG PACD, 26 June1945, in ATC General's Log, p. 696.
63 Hists., PACD, ATC, Jan. 1945, pp. 31-32; May-Sept. 1945, pp. 43-52, 128-30, 132-56, and esp. App. 8, "Transpacific Transport Schedules—Effective 1 August 1945.".
64 "The Maintenance Jam is Cleared," extract from Hist. Rcd. Rpt. of 1503d AAF BU, Feb. 1945; Sta. Control Div., ATC, "Aircraft Utilization," 27 July 1945, p. AU-4.
65 Hist., PACD, ATC, May-Sept. 1945, pp. 7-8; SWPW, Special Mission #75, pp. 1-18, and documents appended thereto; GHQ USAFPAC, Staff Study, Operation "BAKER-SIXTY," 12 Aug. 1945.
66 SWPW, Special Mission #75, pp. 17-18; msg., ATC #0691, ATC Hq to CG NOLD et al., 11 Aug. 1945; msg., ATC #1028 and 1102, ATC Hq to CG ICHD & PACD, 17 Aug. 1945; msg., #2646, CG ICHD to CG ATC, 19 Aug. 1945; in ATC General's Log.
67 SWPW, Special Mission #75m pp. 21, 23-55; rpt. of Maj. Gen. L. S. Kuter in ATC Staff Meeting Minutes, 4 Sept. 1945; Hist., Air Cargo Sec. of A-3, 54th Troop Carrier Wing, Aug.-Sept. 1945, pp. 9-13.
68 SWPW, Special Mission #75, pp. 53-69, 62-73; rpt. of Maj. Gen. L. S. Kuter in ATC Staff Mtg. Min., 4 Sept. 1945.
69 Oliver La Farge, The Eagle in the Egg (Boston, 1949), p. 296; SWPW, Special Mission #75, p. 81.