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02/01/42

Eighth AF

VIII BC is activated at Langley Field and VIII IC at Selfridge Field.


02/01/42

FEAF

P-40's from Bataan bomb and strafe landing barges off Quinauan Point during 1/2 Feb. These strikes, in conjunction with naval and field arty fire, cause considerable damage and casualties but fail to prevent the landings which take place S of the point, although the attempt to reinforce troops already on the point is thwarted.


02/02/42

Hawaiian AF

VII IC is activated in Hawaii, with Gen Davidson as cmdr. Gen Hale cmds VII BC.


02/03/42

FEAF

Bad weather from now until 18 Feb, along with effective interception by ftrs, thwarts attempts of HBs in Java to deliver damaging blows on shipping and A/Fs in NEI. B-17's strikes from Singosari against shipping at Balikpapan (8 Feb) and an A/F at Kendari (9 Feb) are repulsed by ftr attacks. B-17's on a shipping strike claim hits on a carrier near Sinjai.


02/05/42

AAF

Far East, Caribbean, Hawaiian, and Alaskan AFs are redesignated Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, and Eleventh AFs, respectively.


02/06/42

CCS

WD announces creation of US-British CCS in Washington.


02/09/42

Seventh AF

12 B-17's are detached and released to CINCPAC for assignment to TF 11 for operations in S Pacific.


02/09/42

Fifth AF

Between this day and 18 Feb, HBs fly at least 14 missions, but they result in claims of only 3 hits on shipping.


02/12/42

AAF

Gen Arnold indicate that 16 HB gps, 3 Pur gps, and 8 photorcn sqs will be sent to UK during 1942.


02/12/42

Tenth AF

Activated at Patterson Field.


02/12/42

Eighth AF

Gen Duncan, CG, requests that his force, inadequate for its intended mission under GYMNAST, be strengthened by several bomb and pur gps. This move, if carried out, would require diversion of units originally intended for other task forces.


02/14/42

Seventh AF

A B-17 flies photo rcn of Wake I."


02/15/42

SE Asia

Japanese forces on Malay Peninsula capture Singapore.


02/15/42

UK

Lt Col Townsend Griffiss, aide to Gen Chaney, is killed when the aircraft on which he is a passenger is mistakenly shot down by RAF Polish fliers. He is first US airman to die in line of duty in Europe since the US entered World War II. Eighth AF base at Bushy Park is later named Camp Griffiss in his honor.


02/17/42

Tenth AF

Col Harry A Halverson becomes CO."


02/17/42

Eleventh AF

Colonel Lionel H Dunlap arrives from ZI and becomes CO of the Eleventh.


02/19/42

Fifth AF

Operating out of Malang, Madioen, and Jogjakarta, A-24's, with P-40 escort, and B-17's attack vessel landing troops on Bali. The attacks, carried out during the afternoon of 19 Feb and throughout the morning of 20 Feb, cause considerable damage to vessels but fail to halt the landings. P-40's shoot down or turn back several bmrs weeping W over Java. Japanese airplane attack Darwin, bombing vessels loaded with troops destined for defense of Koepang on Timor I. 10 P-40's sent to Darwin to escort the convoy are almost entirely wiped out by the attack.


02/19/42

Seventh AF

VII AFBC is activated.


02/20/42

AAFIB

Gen Eaker arrives in UK with 6 staff officers.


02/21/42

Fifth AF

Gen Brett, Dep CG ABDACOM, informs WD of his decision to evacuate Fifth AF and other US troops from Java. Fifth AF bmrs at Java bases fly about 20 strikes, usually in 2-and 3-aircraft elements, against shipping in Java Sea and against tgts on Bali from this date through 1 Mar. 11 strikes are complete failures; the remainder, although causing some damage to vessels and A/F facilities, fail to deter the invasion of Java.


02/23/42

Eighth AF

HQ VIII BC established in UK Gen Eaker assumes cmd.


02/23/42

Fifth AF

B-17's fly first mission against Rabaul. Operating out of Townsville, the force suffers mechanical trouble and runs into bad weather. Only 1 HB manages to bomb the tgt. Gen Brereton, CG, departs for India after issuing order terminating HQ Fifth AF. Until 3 Sep 42, units of Fifth AF will be initially under control of ABDACOM and then Allied AF (SWPA).


02/23/42

ZI

Japanese submarine I-17 fires 13 rounds of 5 1/2-in shells from range of 2,500 yds at oil refinery N of Santa Barbara. Pur and bmr aircraft sent to the area are unable to destroy the sub.


02/24/42

Fifth AF

HB units begin evacuating Java.


02/24/42

ZI

Reports of unidentified air planes approaching Los Angeles from the ocean during 24/25 Feb result in 'Battle of Los Angeles' in which some 1,400 rounds of 3-in AA ammo is fired against various 'targets.' Later the Army will conclude that the 'battle' had been touched off by 1 to 5 unidentified aircraft, but the Navy will maintain there was no reason for the firing.


02/25/42

AAF

AWPD recommends removal of GYMNAST from list of current projects. This proposal, if adopted, would leave Eighth AF uncommitted to any operation.


02/25/42

USAFBI

Gen Chaney instructs Gen Eaker and staff to VIII BC to proceed to HQ, RAF BC for study of bombing operations, and to make rcn of certain A/Fs and submit plans for reception and assignment of AAF units.


02/27/42

Fifth AF

Battle of Java Sea. Allied air and naval units try to stop convoy of some 80 ships approaching Java from NE. All available B-17's, A-24's, P-40's and LB-30's are put into the air but achieve only insignificant results. An Allied naval force, 5 cruisers and 11 destroyers, under Adm Doorman, Royal Netherlands Navy, meets the enemy near Surabaya and is decisively defeated, losing 5 ships. Most of Fifth AF ground echelon in Java is evacuated by sea. The Sea Witch delivers 27 crated P-40's to Tjilatjap, Java, but these will be destroyed to prevent their falling into Japanese hands. 32 P-40's aboard the USS Langley, which sailed from Australia for India on 23 Feb, are lost when the Langley is sunk by aircraft 100 mi S of Tjilatjap. The pilots are rescued by other vessels in the convoy, but the enemy sinks these ships with the exception of a destroyer, which delivers 2 of the pilots to Perth.


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