Northwest Thailand during World War II

Details of Aircraft Losses by Date


Text Notes

05 Mar 1944: At Chiang Mai Airfield, which was being used primarily by the IJAAF, three Kawasaki Ki-48 Type 99 twin-engined light bombers (Alled reporting name: "Lily")[0] were destroyed on the ground by parafrag bombs dropped by eight B-25s of the USAAF 22nd and 491st (Medium) Bomb Squadrons. The squadrons flew out of Yangkai (N25°24.25 E103°06.77), about 60km NNE of Kunming, China, and about 800 km north of Chiang Mai. [1]


One Royal Thai Air Force Curtiss Hawk III on the field was also destroyed in the raid.[1a]

While photos of the damage at the airfield resulting from the raid were described by USAAF pilot Wendell Hanson,[1b] they are not available at present. Several other photos from that same period are available, such as this aerial photo taken about three months before the raid. The revetments in which the Japanese twin engine bombers might have been parked are circled:[1c]

Yong photo
Click here for an enlargement (1.3MB) of the image above

This oblique aerial photo of the north end of the field was taken about two months after the raid and shows the desolation resulting from repeated attacks by Allied aircraft. This photo is actually the product of a gun camera recording a strafing in progress:[1d]

Strafing oblique
Click here for an enlargement (0.7MB) of the image above

The wreckage can be assumed to have eventually found its way into a Japanese scrap metal drive.[1e]


• Umemoto, 2002, lists three identical entries:[2]

Entry for Ki-48s (Umemoto, v 2, p 495)
English translation
  25 Mar 1944
  8th Light Bomber Air Combat Regiment
  Kawasaki Ki-48
  Unknown (none)
  Chiang Mai Airfield
  B-25 bombing
  Burned on the ground

  Umemoto comment:[3]

3月5日には、タイのチェンマイ飛行場が8機のB25(日本側判断)に襲われ、8戦隊の双軽3機が 炎上した他、人員資材に大損害を受けた。

On 5 March [1944], Thailand's Chiang Mai airfield was attacked by eight B25s (judged by the Japanese side), three twin light aircraft of Squadron 8 burned, and personnel materials were severely damaged. [Google translation]



Revision List
2021 Oct 08
First published on Internet



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0.^ A USAAF pilot on the raid, Wendell Hanson, misidentified the twin engine bombers as "Bettys", ie, Mitsubishi G4Ms.

(Wendell H. Hanson, “Chiang Mai, Thailand”, Jay V. Percival, “My Recollection”, and John A. Johns, “More About the Chiang Mai Raid”, all in WWII Diary: Stories by the Airmen of the 22nd Bombs Squadron of World War II, edited by David K. Hayward (Reprint, Longbeach, CA: 22nd Bomb Squadron Association, 2014), pp 199-208, 209-210, and 219-220, respectively)

1.^ See 05 Mar 1944: B-25C for information from the Allied side.

Photo: Ki-48 Sokei.

1a.^ Sakpinit Promthep email of 08:51 06 Feb 2021.

1b.^ Hayward, ibid.

1c.^ Photo from Ted Yong via Sakpinit Promthep email of 03:41 13 Dec 2020. Annotated with Microsoft Publisher by author.


















1d.^ Ted Yong, ibid. Annotated with Microsoft Publisher by author.
















1e.^ As described in ชีวิตของมาซาโอะ เชโตะ ผู้ถูกพ่อและญี่ปุ่นทอตทิ้ง เล่ม 1, แปลจาก : Seto Masao no Jinsel (ชีวิตของมาซาโอะ เชโตะ), แปลโดย : บ้ณทิต ประดิษฐานุวงษ์ [Seto, Masao, Life of Masao Seto, Book 1, p 160 [my ref: 03400 Boggett/Seto xlatn]

2.^ 梅本弘,ビルマ航空戦・上 (東京:大日本印刷株, 2002), 495 --- Umemoto, Hiroshi, Air War in Burma, vol 2 (Tokyo: Dai Nippon, 2002), p 495.



3.^ Umemoto, ibid, p 123.