A. Engagement
B. 25 November 1943
C. 38th Fighter Squadron, 55th Fighter Group
D. About 1300
E. Near Arras
F. Clear
G. ME109  or later model
H. No claim
I.  We were top squadron on a fighter sweep penetration in the vicinity of Arras, and were flying at approx. 20,000 feet when vapor trails were seen at 11 o'clock high.  We immediately started climbing to get above them but had only reached about 22,000 feet when they attacked us head on.  There were about 15 of them and they appeared to be ME109's.
I skidded to miss the first 2 and picked on the third.  He started firing at about the same time and I observed smoke and flashes from 5 guns.  One in the prop hub, a very bright flash, 2 guns near the wing roots and 2 midway to the wing tips.  we closed so rapidly that I did not observe any damage.
After the frontal attack they immediately swung around in a climbing turn to the right and I climbed tot he left.  They easily out climbed us but we seemed able to out turn them.
Even at full throttle they seemed much faster and had a better rate of climb than we did.  The enemy pilots were very aggressive and pressed home their attacks.  They made no effort to dive or climb away; instead they would turn and manuever (sic.) until they were shot at from behind or chased away by superior numbers.

Capt. Air Corps


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