Combat aircraft. Warrior of the Empire turned communist


This plane may well be called "an aircraft of a difficult fate." In general, various collisions and oddities went with him wing to wing from the very moment of the idea of ​​this machine. And what an amazing fate befell the plane, and in general, there are no words.

The reason for the creation of the aircraft was the next Sino-Japanese war. Of course Chinese aviation did not interfere with the Imperial Air Force until the Soviet Union intervened. And then not only troubles began, but the most unpleasant discoveries.

It seems to be not the most technologically advanced country, the Soviet Union, provided China with its aviation equipment. And yesterday the Japanese pilots, who felt like the kings of the Chinese sky, today found themselves in the position of boys to fight.

How else, if the "newest" Ki-27 fighter could not catch up with the Soviet SB bomber, and the Japanese bombers could only properly burn under the bullets of the Soviet I-16 and even I-15.

Moreover, there was no particular hope that the new machines from Kawasaki and Mitsubishi, the Ki-30 and Ki-32, would improve the situation in any way. Already in 1937 it became clear that they had not yet reached the start of the military race and had lost the race.

The technical department of the Air Force headquarters formulated a task personally for Mitsubishi and Kawasaki, according to which they would have to create a machine that could solve the problem that appeared in the Chinese sky.

Mitsubishi soon dropped out of the competition as it was busy with work in the interests of fleet.

And Kawasaki did it simply. Engineer Takeo Doi took the current design of the Ki-45 heavy fighter as a sample ( Combat aircraft. Not Messerschmitt, but similar) and tried create a light bomber based on it.

It is clear that making a light bomber out of a heavy fighter is not so difficult. Reinforce the structure, add a bomb bay with a bomb bay, places for shooters and pick up engines. It took Doi a year and a half to do this, and in mid-1939 the first prototype was ready.

Work on two aircraft was carried out almost in parallel, and it turned out that the changes that were made to the design of the fighter were also made to the bomber and vice versa.

At the end of November 1939, the aircraft went into production as the "Ki-48 Type 99" Sokei "twin-engine light bomber, and was officially adopted on May 11, 1940.

And the service of this aircraft began, which, we note, continued outside the Second World War. The plane took part in battles on absolutely all fronts of the Second World War, where Japan took part. And the land of those places is generously strewn with parts of "Sokaev".

By the way, Ki-48, which is exhibited in Moscow on Poklonnaya Gora, was brought there from Shumshu Island, where it spent some time as an element of the landscape, and then was restored.

The aircraft proved to be very, very worthy in testing and operation. It turned out to be practical, easy to maintain, the pilots liked its handling and yes, compared to its predecessors, it was quite fast. The fighter base bore fruit and the Ki-47 could easily reach a speed of 500 km / h, which was, if not higher, then on a par with many fighters of that time.

So the plan "To catch up and overtake the SB" was 100% fulfilled.

Throughout its life, the Ki-48 has been the subject of various experiments. They constantly wanted to create something from him that would give an advantage to the Japanese aviation. This is completely normal if you take into account the good design.

The first development was an attempt to reverse the transformation of the Ki-48 into a heavy escort fighter for the Ki-48 themselves. This happened in 1942, when regular clashes began with European and American models of fighter technology. Which regularly wreaked havoc on Ki-48s.

This is how the Ki-81 project, an escort fighter, was born, which was to be armed with 4 7,7 mm machine guns (later 12,7 mm) and one 20 mm cannon in a circular turret. The tower failed, either electrically or hydraulically, and the project was shelved.

Naturally, the Ki-48 did not escape the fate of a kamikaze aircraft. The crew was reduced from 4 to 2 people, an 800-kg bomb was firmly installed in the bomb bay, and a fuse bar was inserted into the nose.

Ki-48 "Sokai" also took part in the jet program of Japan. The first Japanese jet engine Ne.00 was installed under the bomb bay.

True, no special results were recorded, the engine was frankly weak. But on the basis of the results obtained, already quite sane engines Ne.10 and Ne.12 were created in 1944.

Naturally, when the Kawasaki firm finished work on the Ki-148 or I-GO-1b anti-ship guided missile in July 1944, the Ki-48 was chosen to carry this missile.

In total, four standard Ki-48-IIb were modified as a carrier of a 750-kg rocket and sent for testing. Tests have shown that a 750-kg rocket with a 300 kg warhead, controlled by radio, can become very serious weapons... True, it was supposed to be used from the Ki-102 and Ki-67 special strike aircraft, and the Ki-48 was exclusively a test platform.

It did not come to the use of Ki-148 / I-GO-1b missiles. Mainly due to radio control problems. But about 150 missiles were made.

But these were separate aircraft that were being redesigned. And the bulk of them regularly served in the units of the Imperial Japanese Air Force and prepared for hostilities.

It is clear that Ki-48 did not have time for the war with China and the events on Khasan and Khalkhin Gol. But nothing, another Sino-Japanese war broke out, and there the bomber took part in full.

Ki-48 took part in battles in China in all directions. There, of course, a bomber that flew at a speed of 500 km / h and a range of 1 km was very useful. In addition to his usual work, "Sokai" was also engaged in counter-partisan warfare.

"Kawasaki" very closely followed the feedback about its vehicle and already according to information received from China, a modification of the Ki-48-Ib was created, in which the wishes of the crews following the results of the battles in China were taken into account.

Over time, the Ki-48 quite naturally began to supplant the Ki-30 and Ki-32 as part of the aviation regiments in China. Gradually, the bomber began to receive units fighting in French Indochina. Ki-48 took part in the Malay operation to capture the Philippines.

When the occupation of the Philippines began, Ki-48 was one of the first to land on the airfields captured by airfields in Vigan and Aparri. The rate of advance of the Japanese army depended very much on the actions of the bombers.

Less than a week later, the Japanese almost completely destroyed the American air force in the Philippines, and Ki-48 bombers operated without fear of opposition from enemy fighters, working on ground targets. The blitzkrieg formula worked in Japanese.

It turned out very effectively: light Ki-48s smashed roads and bridges in the path of the retreating allies, and heavy Ki-21s broke into defenses and fortifications.

This was the case in Luzon, Bataan, and elsewhere. Then, after the capture of the Philippines, it was Malaya's turn. Rangoon, New Guinea, the Eastern Islands of the Guinean Archipelago - Ki-48s were operating everywhere.

The Japanese still retained their advantage in the quality of training for pilots and ground crews. They were the cream of the army, veterans of the Asian campaign, and the effectiveness of their combat work was determined not only by the lack of opposition from the Allied aviation, but also by the great experience of the Japanese crews.

But New Guinea became what Midway and the Mariana Islands became to the Japanese navy. Japanese aviation suffered huge losses in New Guinea. The meat grinder, which turned out in New Guinea, cost the Japanese aviation almost 700 aircraft. Whole regiments were destroyed. Shelves were transferred from Burma, Thailand, China, Japan.

In the battles in New Guinea, the premiere of a new aircraft modification, the Ki-48-IIb, took place. The model was distinguished by a higher bomb load and the presence of air brakes for diving.

In addition, in the process of modernization, one rear 7,7 mm machine gun was replaced with a 12,7 mm machine gun, and 7,7 mm machine guns appeared in the windows on the sides. All this, in theory, was supposed to strengthen the defensive armament and reduce the losses of bomber aircraft, which, thanks to the efforts of the Americans, were steadily growing.

On one of the latest modifications, two more course 7,7-mm machine guns appeared on the sides of the navigator's cockpit in the bow. But the caliber of the machine guns made them completely irrelevant.

And the crews preferred to remove the air brakes, since the Ki-48 crews were somehow not trained to bomb from a dive. And even the Japanese pilots considered it overkill to start their studies in real conditions.

Yes, those who fought in New Guinea were not lucky. The color of the Japanese ground bomber aviation was stamped there.

Combat aircraft. Warrior of the Empire turned communist

The Ki-48 bombers in China and Burma were more fortunate, where they remained quite effective against the British, American and Chinese ground forces. The complexity of the relief and remoteness from the supply routes (ports) did not allow the Allies to create a more or less decent network of airfields, so that the Japanese crews were somewhat easier than in New Guinea.

In Burma, there were about 300 Ki-48s, which, to the best of their ability, attacked British troops.

In China, units flying the Ki-48 constantly bombed Chinese positions. But the Chinese Air Force by that time had become a pretty decent force.

For example, in 1943 raids on an airfield in the city of Kunming, 121 bombers and 165 fighters of the Japanese army were involved. The losses of the Chinese Air Force and Allied Forces were 30 destroyed and 27 damaged aircraft. The Japanese paid for this with 18 downed planes. And when, by the end of the war, the Allies increased their presence in China, the Japanese began to suffer more significant losses.

In Burma and parts of India, things happened even faster than in China. The British, having recovered from the initial losses, increased their air force to such an extent that flights of Ki-48 without fighter cover (and sometimes with it) ended with downed aircraft on the ground.

The Dingzhan Massacre is known, when a group of 48 Ki-48s were intercepted by 32 British P-40s. 28 Japanese aircraft were shot down.

By 1944, Ki-48s began to fly in small groups, and even at night. This slightly reduced the effectiveness of the Ki-48 strikes, but slightly reduced losses.

The system was rather peculiar: a flight from the airfields of Thailand to Rangoon for refueling, then a jump north to any of the dozens of auxiliary airfields in Burma, after which the formations of light bombers could strike on a wide front and return back to their bases.

In this way, raids were carried out on objects in India, Burma and southern China throughout 1944.

The groups were small, from 3 to 9 Ki-48s. Even the base of American "strategists" B-29 "Superfortress" in Kharagpur was raided on Christmas night 1944. Three Ki-48s brought a kind of "congratulations". True, all three desperate crews were shot down by British night Beaufighters patrolling the airfield area.

Overall, 1944 was the sunset year for the Ki-48. The last battle for the Sokaevs came in the defense of the Philippines.

In July 1944, it became clear at the Japanese General Staff that the question of the American invasion of the Philippines and even Japan was a matter of time. And they finally decided to defend the Philippines and Formosa with a united front, the army and the navy. Under the same command.

According to this plan, the 4th Air Army was formed, into which all the units using the Ki-48 were brought together. The Sokai were based at the Clark Field and Lipa airfields on the island of Luzon.

On October 24, 1944, the Air Force launched attacks against the Allied invasion forces in Leyte Gulf. The task is to destroy the American invasion fleet.

The task turned out to be impossible. The losses were enormous. By the end of the first week of the battle, there was nothing left of the three Ki-48 regiments. All planes were destroyed. Two Ki-48 regiments were deployed to the rescue from the Kuriles and Borneo. And both were burnt in the hell that the Americans arranged for the Japanese army and navy.

By January 1945, the Japanese Air Force units in the Philippines had been destroyed, and only kamikaze attacks posed some threat to US ships. Ki-48 has become a rarity in the skies over the Pacific Ocean.

The surviving aircraft began to be converted into aircraft for "special attacks" by installing an 800-kg bomb with a shock fuse. These aircraft were used in the defense of Okinawa in 1945. A number of Ki-48s were still used as night bombers, and some, already converted into kamikaze aircraft, stood in reserve on the island of Kyushu to be used against the transports of the invasion of the Japanese islands. These aircraft were discovered already during the occupation by American troops.

But the most interesting thing is the fate of the Ki-48 after the end of the war.

Usually, Japanese aircraft were scrapped as the Allies imposed restrictions on Japan. But Ki-48 began to serve in the foreign air force.

A huge number of aircraft were abandoned by the Japanese in the Philippines, specifically on the island of Java. Basically, through the efforts of American bombers, it was scrap metal. But when, immediately after the war, a war of independence began between the Indonesian rebels and the Dutch colonialists, the rebels were able to assemble one operational Ki-48 from this junk.

When the battle for the independence of Indonesia from Holland ended in victory for the Indonesians, this plane laid the foundation for the Indonesian bomber aviation.

In China, a large number of Ki.48 bombers generally fell into the hands of the Chinese. And they were received by the nationalists of the Kuomintang in Nanjing and Beijing, and the communists in Manchuria and North Korea.

There is no information about the use of Ki.48 by the Kuomintang forces, but the communists not only included Japanese aircraft in their composition, but also hired crew members of Japanese aircraft to use them, which were shot down in the skies of China!

Naturally, on the terms of complete amnesty and forgiveness of "services" to China.

The Japanese cooperated and easily began bombing the Kuomintang forces during the Chinese Civil War. Moreover, Japanese pilots became the first teachers of two Chinese flight schools in Harbin (1st PLA Air Force School) and Changchun (2nd PLA Air Force School).

And the technical personnel of the Japanese flying units at a shock communist pace restored and repaired the Ki.48, inherited by the PLA Air Force.

And by 1946, when, in fact, the People's Liberation Army of China was organized, its air force consisted of 46 Ki.48 bombers.

These aircraft served until the resource was fully depleted and were decommissioned in the second half of the 20th century.

This is how the imperial plane ended up under the flag of the builders of communism.

An interesting fate, uncharacteristic of Japanese aircraft. "South Wind" did not end his career under the tracks of bulldozers, but became the founder of the military aviation of the two countries.

In essence, it was an ordinary aircraft for Japanese aviation. Lightweight, fast, well-controlled, reliable and maintainable. Minuses are also standard: lack of any protection, weak defensive weapons.

A standard Japanese aircraft of that time, but this is how its further fate developed outside the box.

LTH Ki-48-IIb

Wingspan, m: 17,45
Length, m: 12,75
Height, m: 3,80
Wing area, м2: 40,00

Weight, kg
- empty aircraft: 4 550
- normal takeoff: 6 500
- maximum take-off: 6 750

Engine: 2 х "Hakajima" Hа-115 "Army type 1" х 1130 hp
Maximum speed km / h: 503
Cruising speed, km / h: 390
Practical range, km: 2 400
Maximum rate of climb, m / min: 590
Practical ceiling, m: 10 100

Crew, prs: 4

- three 7,7-mm type 89 machine guns in the upper, bow and lower mountings (on the Ki-48-IIs, a 12,7-mm type 1 machine gun in the upper mount);
- bomb load up to 800 kg.
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  1. +13
    2 September 2021 05: 29
    Very interesting and informative article! I really enjoyed it ... without a fig in my pocket! How many times have we heard how the USSR, for example, handed over to China, for example, Japanese artillery, tanks, airplanes ... I don't remember anything about ships, though! But questions arose ... how did the Chinese use such gifts? Where did they use them? How effective? Who trained them and how they repaired them ... Questions ... questions ... often unanswered! And in this article you can get answers to some questions ... But, unfortunately, not all! For example, how about Java emigrated to the Philippines, and the "Filipino" Ki.48 began to fight for the freedom of Indonesia ...
    1. +5
      2 September 2021 06: 50
      Of course, I read about the "south wind" before - the plane is remarkable, but the fact that it was in service with other states after the war ... This is news to me. Interesting news!)))
      1. +5
        2 September 2021 07: 41
        The Japanese cooperated and easily began bombing the Kuomintang forces during the Chinese Civil War. Moreover, Japanese pilots became the first teachers of two Chinese flight schools in Harbin (1st PLA Air Force School) and Changchun (2nd PLA Air Force School).

        - a lot of people have spat (and in recent years in print and on VO) at the Bolsheviks for traveling through Germany, "in a sealed carriage", in Ingushetia. and the east is just a very delicate matter. the Romanovs did not pull Russia out of Asiaticism. and the USSR had loyal Basmachi and Chinese imperialists, + Koreans Kim Il Sung, + Mao and other countries of the world
  2. +9
    2 September 2021 05: 32
    Good article. Very informative
  3. +6
    2 September 2021 06: 43
    I did not know that the captured Japanese pilots were helping their Chinese comrades ... very interesting.
  4. +3
    2 September 2021 08: 17
    The author did not write a word from where the Chinese communists got these planes in commercial quantities, not a word, magically hit, that's all. Guess for yourself.
    that's just been transmitted -
    27 rifles and carbines, 877 machine guns, 5207 artillery pieces and mortars, 5219 tanks and armored vehicles, 743 aircraft, 612 vehicles and tractors, significant amounts of ammunition, radio-telephone and sapper equipment were transferred. The ships of the Sungaria River Flotilla were also handed over to the CPC troops.
    1. +4
      2 September 2021 10: 58
      Quote: irontom
      The author did not write a word from where the Chinese communists got these planes in commercial quantities, not a word, magically hit, that's all. Guess for yourself.

      And why write about this now, when even in the memoirs of the Soviet era, schemes were described for the transfer of weapons and equipment to the troops of the Chinese communists, which the USSR inherited as trophies. Somewhere our army men simply removed the guards from the trophy warehouses for the night - and the Chinese swept the warehouses clean (literally - when leaving, the Chinese swept the floor behind them). In Port Arthur, wagons with weapons were brought to the loading points.
      I remember how, in one of the meetings in the early spring of 1946, Xiao Jingguang, in the presence of Han Guang, very thoroughly and, in our opinion, very objectively informed the Military Council of the Army about the state of the ODA troops. “The situation with weapons and ammunition is so grave,” he said, “that if we do not receive the necessary assistance, it will be impossible to resist the Kuomintang troops, so powerfully armed with American weapons. I have been authorized by the Bureau of the Central Committee of the CPC for the North-East and the command of the ODA to report this extremely difficult situation for us, without exaggerating or underestimating its complexity, and to ask the Soviet command to hand over the captured Japanese weapons to us. "
      As we learned later, such requests were also sent to the Soviet High Command in Manchuria. Realizing the complexity of this question, Xiao Jingguang did not demand an immediate answer from us.
      II Lyudnikov and I reported to the Military Council of the district this request and our opinion on the possibility of transferring to the ODA the captured Japanese weapons we have (up to 80 wagons).
      Soon it was decided, in the interests of the Chinese and Soviet peoples, to provide assistance to the ODA with weapons and military equipment.
      Wasting no time, we informed Xiao Jingguang that in a week we would concentrate on the Dagushan Peninsula, 15 kilometers north of the city of Dalniy, the first 15 wagons of captured weapons.
      The transfer of weapons was entrusted to Colonel Voloshin and Colonel Pozdnyakov - experienced officers who more than once proved their discretion and efficiency. This and subsequent programs were well organized by them.
      © Boyko V.R. Big Khingan - Port Arthur.
    2. +4
      2 September 2021 11: 00
      The same Port Arthurians also used gray supply schemes, with the involvement of local personnel.
      The Department of the rear of the army maintained close contact with the merchant, who then did not want to reveal himself and introduced himself to us as the merchant "C". He had his branches of the bank in Asia, Africa and South America, he could buy and bring any product anywhere. "Ts" had business relations with our foreign trade organizations and often expressed satisfaction with their accuracy and accuracy. By the way, I heard such comments about our then Foreign Trade and from Japanese businessmen.

      So, we turned to the merchant "C" with a request to charter a merchant ship for the Council of Trade Unions. His clerks managed to do this quickly, and the chartered ship of the Liberty class was without delay loaded by Dalinsk workers, as indicated in the ship's documents, with wheat, kaolyan and chumiza. In fact, the main "commodity", though disguised from prying eyes, were weapons and ammunition. It remained to ferry it across the Bohai Strait to a conditional place on Shandong, which was done. The entire operation took less than five days.

      The funny thing is that it was not even a soldier who wrote about this, but a person who, on duty, had to follow the general line of the party in words and deeds - the political commander, ChVS 39 A. And this was published in Novy Mir and Voyenizdat.
      1. +5
        2 September 2021 13: 37
        where did the Chinese communists get these planes in commercial quantities, not a word, magically got them, everything. Guess for yourself.
        Trophies. Japanese units armed with Ki-48 Lili \ Sokei:
        3rd Assault Sentai - June 42 - July 45 - Philippines; Kuril Islands, Korea
        6th Assault Sentai - 1942-45 - China, Philippines, Korea.
        8th Light Bomber Sentai 1941-1945 - Philippines, Burma, Indochina, Thailand.
        12th Light Bomb Sentai from Apr. 44 until the end of the war - New Guinea, Philippines
        16th Light Bomber Sentai 1941-45 - Korea, China, Okinawa, Philippines
        34th Light Bomb Sentai Oct 42 - Apr 44 - Indochina, Burma, Thailand
        35th Light Bomber Sentai - 1942-1944 - Indochina
        45th Assault Sentai - July 1940 - February 1944 - Japan, China, Manchuria, Rabaul, New Guinea, about. Negros
        65th Light Bomber Sentai 1940-July 1941 - China
        75th Assault Sentai 1941 - until the end of the war China, Malaya, Sumatra, Java, New Guinea, Celebes, Philippines, Japan
        90th Light Bomb Sentai - Oct. 41- until the end of the war - Indochina, Malaya, Sumatra
        206th Light Bomber Sentai during 1941 - Japan
        208th Light Bomber Sentai March 41- May 45 - Manchuria, Rabaul, New Guinea
        They did a lot of them
        Major modifications:
        Ki-48 prototype - 4 pcs
        Ki-48 pre-production - 5 pcs
        Ki-48-I serial - 557 pcs

        Ki-48-II prototype - 3 pcs
        Ki-48-II serial, equipped with Ha-115 2x1130 hp engines. in total, 1408 units were built.
        Not all were destroyed, however, and the Chinese did not last long, because. wear and tear and lack of spare parts put an end to their operation.
  5. +2
    2 September 2021 09: 15
    Thank you. And what resource did the Japanese WWII aircraft have? What can they be compared to: Germany, the USSR or the USA?
  6. +5
    2 September 2021 11: 42
    "Sokei" - south wind - approx.

    The author should not make excursions into foreign languages.
    "South wind" in Japanese is 南風 - minamikaze.
    And "Sokei" is the Latin abbreviation for the Japanese abbreviation 九九 式 雙 發 輕 爆 擊 機 - shiki-souhatu-keibaku - a type 99 twin-engine light bomber.
    1. +4
      2 September 2021 11: 58
      The question is off topic.
      Did the Japanese have any damage to Sekaku in the battle of Santa Cruz?
      The number of bombs and damage.
      Usually indicated vaguely "from 3 to 6"
      1. +5
        2 September 2021 12: 28
        Japanese sources confidently speak of four hits - three in the aft part of the flight deck, one damaged the starboard side.
        1. +4
          2 September 2021 12: 38
          Thank you
          I know the photo.
          I would very much like a hit pattern.
          1. +5
            2 September 2021 13: 17
            There is no diagram, there is a photo of damage to the flight deck in the area of ​​the aft elevator and side.

            1. +5
              2 September 2021 13: 37
              Thank you.
              Again, the plane lift attracts bombs like a magnet.
          2. +5
            2 September 2021 13: 18
            Japanese sources are confident about four hits
            While the Japanese were beating up the Hornet, its pilots prepared to strike back. At 08.55 the first strike group of 14 SBDs and 4 F4Fs under the command of Lieutenant Commander Windhlem discovered Admiral Abe's Vanguard Force. Shokaku radar detected this group 15 minutes ago at a distance of 97 miles, which was, oddly enough, the best radar achievement that day. However, this did not bring much benefit to the Japanese. 14 fighters rushed to intercept, which could not stop the Americans. The Americans lost 2 fighters and 1 dive bomber, another 1 SBD made an emergency landing on the water, and 2 refused to attack. According to Japanese documents, the remaining 11 Downtless dived into the Shokaku. at 09.27, dropping bombs from 60 to 900 feet. The commander of this group, Lieutenant Vose, claimed to have seen 4 hits on the Shokaku.

            The bombs fell around the middle and stern elevators. The hangar of the aircraft carrier was destroyed, the stern anti-aircraft guns were out of order. There could be no question of any flight operations, since the flight deck most of all resembled a lunar landscape. The Japanese took into account the experience of Midway and were well prepared to fight the fires, so the fire was extinguished by 14.30. During the attack, one of the escort destroyers was easily damaged by close explosions.
            1. +6
              2 September 2021 13: 22
              “At 07:14, Admiral Kakuto fired 29 bombers. Forming in three echelons, they rushed towards the enemy.

              Soon a radio message from the aircraft of the first shock wave was intercepted: "The enemy aircraft carrier has been found ... We are attacking with all our might."

              In a decisive attack, which lasted about 10 minutes, forty of our bombers and torpedo bombers achieved several direct hits from bombs and torpedoes on the American aircraft carrier Hornet.

              While I was listening to this message, my attention was distracted by the return of another reconnaissance aircraft to the Sekaku. The plane was damaged and was forced to land near the stern of the aircraft carrier. I directed the destroyer towards the emergency plane and began to lower the lifeboat. And at that moment enemy aircraft appeared. Looking up, I saw about a dozen dive bombers jumping out of the clouds at an altitude of about 2000 meters. A little below them were six torpedo bombers. I continued the rescue operation, fully confident that the attacking aircraft would target the aircraft carrier Sekaku, not my little destroyer, anyway.

              When our boat returned with two rescued pilots, all ships had already opened fire on the approaching American aircraft, already attacked by six of our combat air patrol fighters.

              Two enemy torpedo bombers were shot down by our fighters and disappeared, exploding in the air. One of our fighters rammed an American bomber, and both planes literally evaporated in a bright and instant flash of flame, accompanied by the roar of a terrible explosion. I saw two American bombers spinning like fallen leaves fall into the ocean. Strange, but I did not see enemy fighters in the air and was very surprised that the Americans threw a shock wave into the attack without fighter cover.

              The number of enemy aircraft was rapidly decreasing. The white and yellow caps of the anti-aircraft explosions of our defensive fire stained the entire sky. There was hope that we would not suffer any damage in this attack. The Amatsukadze zigzagged at a speed of 33 evil, firing from all guns, trying to cover the Sekaku.

              I saw how two American dive bombers, breaking through anti-aircraft fire and fighter cover, rushed to the aircraft carrier from a height of about 700 meters. The planes fell almost vertically downward, finally leveled off the flight and, roaring engines, gained altitude, hiding in the clouds. In the next instant, it seemed to me that two or three silver stripes resembling lightning struck the deck of the aircraft carrier "Sekaku". Bright flashes of fire flashed in the bow and near the island superstructure of the aircraft carrier, and the bright flames instantly engulfed the entire flight deck. Tongues of fire erupted from the aircraft lifts, accompanied by puffs of black and white smoke.

              The flagship aircraft carrier was hit by four bombs at once. Engulfed in flames, trailing a plume of black smoke, the huge ship turned slowly. Apparently, his cars were not damaged at all. The Sekaku increased its speed to 30 knots and began to leave the battle zone, accompanied by two destroyers. At the last moment, I received an order to join the escort of the destroyer Zuikaku, the last aircraft carrier left in the formation. "
              Hara Tameichi "Samurai Odyssey. Japanese Destroyer Commander"
  7. +5
    2 September 2021 12: 04
    Quote: irontom
    The author did not write a word from where the Chinese communists got these planes in commercial quantities, not a word, magically hit, that's all.

    Japanese weapons in the Chinese Red Army ended up in large numbers after Japan's surrender.
    It also hit the Kuomintang troops, but there the Americans destroyed it and supplied them only with their own weapons.
    The USSR also supplied the PLA with its weapons, but in limited quantities, Japanese trophies had to be used.
  8. +5
    2 September 2021 18: 05
    The Japanese cooperated and easily began bombing the Kuomintang forces during the Chinese Civil War. Moreover, Japanese pilots became the first teachers of two Chinese flight schools in Harbin (1st PLA Air Force School) and Changchun (2nd PLA Air Force School).

    And the technical personnel of the Japanese flying units at a shock communist pace restored and repaired the Ki.48, inherited by the PLA Air Force.

    However ... Grimaces of fate, tell me about it thirty years ago, I never believed it.
    Thanks to Roman for having fun with the adventures of the samurai under the guidance of Comrade Mao. smile
  9. 0
    1 February 2022 11: 10
    Many aircraft of the Japanese Air Force and naval aviation continued to fight after the end of WWII. In the Chinese Civil War, Reisens, Hayabuses, and Hayates, for example

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