August 30, 1958

1958: Concurrently with the Lebanon Crisis (see 15 July 1958), Chinese communists, with Soviet backing, threatened to invade Taiwan, Quemoy, and Matsu, To Taiwan, TAC deployed its Composite Air Strike Force of B-57s, F-100s, F-101s, and C-130s to Taiwan, while PACAF sent an F-86D squadron from Okinawa to provide night defense alert and the Air Defense Command deployed a squadron of F-104s. During the shelling of Quemoy and Matsu, Chinese MiG-17s began to fly over the Nationalist-held islands. Nationalist Chinese F-86 pilots from Taiwan proved to be more than a match for the communist pilots, shooting down 32 MiGs (with 3 probables and 10 damaged). MATS C-118s, C-121s, and C-124s airlifted the Composite Air Strike Force and ADC squadron, while later supporting the effort with 144 C-124 missions. The rapid deployment of the Composite Air Strike Force earned the Mackay Trophy. (F-102s, although included in this image, did not serve in the CASF)