Like Lauchlin Currie at the White House, Bill Pawley was central to the creation and management of the American Volunteer Group, but was so hated by Chennault that he never got full credit for his role. I've a couple of times been promised an article about Pawley, but none showed up, so I have made a first cut on my own account, with emphasis on Pawley's intersection with the Flying Tigers story. See it at the Annals of the Flying Tigers
Japanese military designations have always been a mystery to westerners. In 1940 China, Claire Chennault figured that, since the Japanese had "I-96" and "I-97" fighter planes (the army Nakajima and navy Mitsubishi fixed-gear monoplanes), the new retractable-gear fighter that sent him tumbling into a ditch must therefore be the "I-98." It was of course the infamous Zero. (Chennault wasn't entirely off the mark. The designations did indeed follow in sequence: translated to the western calendar, the fighters went into service in 1937, 1938, and 1940, respectively.)
confusion continues to this day. In any effort to clear it up, Osamu T. last month posted a complete list of WWII Japanese warplanes on the J-Aircraft message
board, with their various designations. It's a work in progress, but Sam has kindly allowed me to publish it on Japan at War.
Some time ago, Richard Dunn wrote a monograph on the Republic P-43 fighters sent to China to equip the 2nd American Volunteer Group. I've now converted that to web pages, from a PDF file that had to be downloaded, so you can read the whole thing online at online.