Wednesday, Dec 15, 1943
Chinese forces were routing the Japanese on the ground in Changsha while Lt. Gen. Joseph W. Stillwell’s Liberators bombed the Japanese air base at Hankow. No one was prophesying an early end to the war in Asia. Secretary of the Navy Frank Knox today announced major blows were coming against the Japanese were coming the Pacific as American forces have grown “stronger and stronger” and their fleet has been whittled down to “piecemeal [New York Times, p. 4) His evidence was the fact that large Japanese transports or cargo vessels were seldom seen now Japan’s outlying bases. Instead, the Japanese were using small barges in order to evade American bombers. But these barges were now coming under attach by PT boats. “PT” was short for “patrol torpedo boat, “ an armed vessel capable of fast attacks.