White phosphorus bombs against B-24 raid


USAAF B-24 Liberator over Japan struck down by Japanese Phosphorus Bomb

One of the more unusual tactics used by the Japanese against US air raids was dropping white phosphorus bombs in the midst of a bomber group.  Despite the caption I don’t see a “struck down” B-24, just bursts from Willie Pete.

Large by Huge resolution here: http://www.worldwarphotos.info/wp-content/gallery/usa/aircrafts/b-24/USAAF_B-24_Liberator_over_Japan_struck_down_by_Japanese_Phoshphorus_Bomb.jpg

Here’s a similar picture and the source:



4 thoughts on “White phosphorus bombs against B-24 raid

  1. That photo from October 14, 1944 was taken by 2/Lt. Keith D. Skelton, a 403rd Bomb Squadron co-pilot, and you’re correct in stating no B-24 was taken down there. (We’re putting that photo in our next book, by the way.) On October 10th, there was another raid on Balikpapan where a 90th Bomb Group B-24 was hit directly by a phosphorus bomb and exploded. There’s also an instance on October 10th where the #3 engine on a 22nd Bomb Group B-24 being knocked out by a nearby phosphorus bomb explosion. It was attacked by Japanese fighters, the crew bailed out, then the plane exploded. None of the men were found.

    • Thanks for the additional info! I’ve seen this picture in various places over the years but I don’t think I’ve ever seen the who/where/when info. Either this one or one very similar is in my copy of Air Defense of the Homeland (1944-1945 Monograph 23).

      What is the next book going to be? Between IHRA and Aeronaut Press it’s real easy for my book fund to stay empty LOL!

      • You’re welcome! You’ll have to take a look through your copy and see if it’s in there.

        Too bad we can’t have unlimited book funds, huh? 🙂 The next book will be about the rest of the 43rd Bomb Group’s history. It’ll pick up where the previous book left off in October 1943, covering the 43rd’s B-24 era.

  2. This is why I shouldn’t post based solely on my memory! It turns out the similar picture is in Japanese Fighter Tactics For Air Combat Intelligence Officers JAN45. I can’t put pics in the comments so I’ll put them in the post

    As far as unlimited book funds, I’ve often said I would need to hit the lottery twice. Once to take care of the family, etc and once to fund my hobbies and interests LOL!

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