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The P-38 was an all-metal, three-wheeled, single-seater, twin-engined monoplane fighter with an aerodynamic design rarely seen in World War II.

The P-38G was widely used by the Army Air Force (USAAF) in all theaters of the war. They were often used for shuttle missions over Germany from the airfields of Ukraine.

The best known operation in which the P-38G participated was Operation Lightning, which changed the war in the Pacific. The mission, which was flown on April 18, 1943, intercepted and shot down a Japanese G4M1 bomber with Japanese Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto on board. In addition, the P-38 was the plane of choice of the two most successful American aces: Richard Ira Bong (40 kills) and Thomas McGuire (38 kills).

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