Thurs. Dec. 24, 1942
"Washing-machine Charlie" came over last night as usual, and I didn't see any of the P-40's go after him. I suppose that's a rumor like everything else. We sure need some night fighters here. The P-40's are equipped with a raid-eye and don't see why they couldn't use them at night - for they don't even have to see the enemy plane.
Heard yesterday also that Amelia Earhart was found in the Georgian Islands with her co-pilot and that they had a son 3 yrs. old (some bunk). If she were there she could get in touch with the outside world, I suppose some way. I know it's possible it might be true, but not probable.
A Co. of Infantry from the 20th Division passed here about an hour ago. I hear the the Japs use the same method that we do when a boat is torpedoed and the fellows jump in the water. They then drop depth charges (ash-cans) and the concussion in the water will tear your chest apart. Was talking to a pilot from a torpedo-plane, and he said they had to be within 510 yds. of the ship when they let one go, and also about 50 ft. from the water. He said it depended on how much guts the pilot had to how close he would get to the ship. Some of these get as close as 50 ft., he said.
They claim we have 50 Flying Fortresses here now and that 60 more are coming in. I know that they were changing the guns on the Fortresses yesterday and that they have a bomb with the word "Togo do not open until Xmas" The planes are named different things like "Tokyo Taxi" and "Popeye". The ice-plant here we captured from the Japs has a sign in front which says "Togo's Ice Plant" and underneath are the words "under new management".
They claim the Japs are building a fighter strip in the New Georgian Islands and if they get that completed, they will be able to send fighter planes (zeros) with their bombers.
We are doing all we can to knock it out.
This is Harry's War Diary
Harry makes another small slip in refering to this new equipment: raid-eye is meant to be radar. But he carefully takes note of the activity on the airfield. Harry gives us a few chuckles with the cocky signs around camp.
Reading Harry's War Diary has given me a better understanding of the cynical approach that Harry had to 'news'. He was very skilled at talking to people directly and getting to the heart of the matter. Harry always seemed to sense someones desire to talk about what was on their minds, and he knew how to conversate!