Monday, December 16, 2019

P.O.W.s Sunk

SAT 16 DEC 1944
Submarine Dace (SS-247) lays mines off French Indochina.

Submarine Finback (SS-230) in attack on Japanese convoy, sinks transport Jusan Maru I-Go about 50 miles northwest of Chichi Jima, 27°24'N, 141°04'E.

British submarine HMS Stoic, despite presence of escort, sinks Japanese gunboat Shoei Maru west of Sunda Strait, 05°45'S, 104°43'E.

TF 38 planes sink Japanese merchant cargo ship Oryoku Maru, escorted by destroyer Momo [Sunk the previous day by the Hawkbill.] and submarine chaser Ch 60, in Subic Bay, 14°45'N, 120°13'E; aviators are unaware that Oryoko Maru is carrying over 1,600 Allied POWs (one of whom is Commander Francis J. Bridget, former commander of the Naval Battalion on Bataan in 1941-1942, who is killed). Those POWs who survive the ordeal of the loss of Oryoku Maru will be again helpless and unwitting victims of U.S. planes at Takao, Formosa, on 27 December 1944 and 9 January 1945. When the draft of POWs reaches its ultimate destination, Moji, Japan, only 497 of the original 1,600+ men remain.

Destroyer Niblack (DD-424) fires first of three shore bombardment missions she will carry out between 16 and 19 December; she targets troop concentrations, rail lines, barracks, and motor convoys. Motor torpedo boat PT-310, in company with a British motor torpedo boat, attacks four north-bound F-lighters a mile off Point Sestri; the allied craft claim one F-lighter probably sunk and one damaged.

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