"Soon after Pearl Harbor Americans began hearing about a Japanese warplane called called the Zero... The Jap plane's great virtues are its climbing ability (service ceiling is 36,000 feet) and its extreme maneuverability. As one U.S. pilot commented:"
'They can go up like an express elevator and turn on a thin dime. Best thing to do with a Zero is make one pass at the bastard, and if you don't get him the first time just keep right on going fast.'"
"Lieutenant Colonel Boyd "Buzz" Wagner, outstanding U.S. fighter pilot, after inspecting several wrecked Zeros, commented that the wings and fuselage were made in one piece, which meant that if a wing were damaged the whole assembly would have to be replaced. Wagner said the landing gear was well made and the entire ship was flush riveted to hold down air resistance."
"The latest type U.S. pursuit planes outclass the Zero in armor protection and general sturdiness, carry heavier guns and are much faster at medium altitudes. Our P-38 and P-39 in particular have top speeds of 400 mph and carry a 37-mm. automatic cannon and four or more machine guns."
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