HISTORY: CIVIL AIR TRANSPORT (CAT) was a Nationalist Chinese airline, later owned by the CIA, that supported United States covert operations throughout East and Southeast Asia. During the Cold War, missions consisted in assistance to "Free World" allies according to the Mutual Defense Assistance Act of 1949. CAT was created by Claire Chennault and Whiting Willauer in 1946 as Chinese National Relief and Rehabilitation Administration (CNRRA) Air Transport. CAT started to operate scheduled passenger services, beginning with international flights to Hong Kong, then to Japan, Korea, the Philippines and Thailand, as well as domestic routes within Taiwan. The granddaughter of Sun Yatsen, Nora Sun, became the youngest flight attendant to work for CAT. The first flights were carried out with C-46, then C-54 Skymaster aircraft. In 1958, CAT inaugurated DC-6B services. In 1961, CAT started to operate a Convair 880M, becoming the first airline to operate pure jet scheduled passenger services on regional routes in the Far East. The Convair 880M was replaced by a Boeing 727 in January 1968. On 16 February 1968 the 727, flying from Hong Kong to Taipei, crashed near Linkou in northern Taiwan, ending 23 years of operations. The remnants of the cargo operation became Flying Tiger. Flying Tiger International merged to Fed Ex Inc.
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