Aviation Art…

Since Dec 7th is this week, a little different one. There were actually TWO battles on the same day, Pearl Harbor, which is the one everyone remembers, but there was another…


Some American pilots managed to counterattack, two such heroes, LT. General USAF (Ret.) Joseph Moore and Colonel USAF (Ret.) Sam Grashio,are pictured in “Too Little Too Late”.
Lt. Joe Moore in his Curtiss P-40B Tomahawk at 22,000 feet over Clark Field is defending against the Japanese attackers as war begins on December 8, 1941 in the Philippines. Over the smoke below is Petty Officer First Class Saburo Sakai’s Zero pursuing Lt. Sam Grashio in his P-40E.

One view of the battle is HERE, and some on LTGEN Moore is HERE.


Aviation Art… — 11 Comments

  1. Those were very grim days. We paid a heavy price for being unprepared and for having faulty intelligence. 9/11 was as close as we’ve come since then but there is no comparison to the drubbing that the US military took from the Japanese. Of course we bounced back, ground them into dust and then nuked them.

  2. It’s not surprising that few have heard of the battle in the Philippines on that day. I keep running into those who have no idea what happened at Pearl Harbor, so you go right ahead publishing such information. Clearly, we need it.

  3. Sadly The P-40E was “few and far between” in the winter of 1941. Today popular fiction and art like this leads people to believe that the bulk of the AAF was made up of “modern” aircraft like the P-40 in 1941 when nothing could be further from the truth. The Bulk of the aircraft at Clark field on Dec. 8 1941 (and Peal on the 7th) were obsolete aircraft like the Brewster, the late ’20’s vintage P-26 and even some ten year old Navy F-2F biplanes. Photos show the Clark flight line deep with 15+ year old B-10’s and a few out dated B-17″B”‘s and “C”‘s. The reason the AVG’s P-40’s were such a big deal in the summer of ’41 is because the AAF didn’t have all that many of them to train with. They were the brand new “top of the line” as the P-38 and P-47 were still teething and “getting the bugs out” with fewer than fifty on hand ,and the P-51 wouldn’t even be a concept for another year. In fact when they stuck a RR Merlin 17 in the P-40 in late 43 it had performance very near that of the P-51B, and stayed in the war in the Med and the Pacific till 1945.

  4. The Japanese strategy, which ultimately didn’t work, relied on creating a defensive ring around Japan in the Pacific. One of the great “what ifs” of history is the idea that if the Japanese hadn’t attacked Pearl Harbor, but instead focused on the South Pacific, including the Philippines, the US might have gotten into the war even later than 1941.

  5. Yamamoto told his superiors that after hitting Pearl Harbor, he could “Run wild for six months, but after that I don’t know”, and the Battle of Midway was from June 4th to the 7th, almost exactly six months to the day….

  6. Odd that the intel for Midway was so good and the intel for Pearl Harbor was so bad. Almost makes you wonder whether Roosevelt wanted us in the war or something.