During the air attack on the destroyer, U.S. airplanes pose as Japanese planes; specifically, Douglas SBD dive bombers with solid circles painted on their wings, and a Grumman Avenger torpedo bomber. During the strafing runs, close ups of the planes' noses show two machine guns. Both the Douglas SBD and Zero had these, albeit of different calibers.
The USS John Paul Jones in reality was the Benson Class destoyer USS Hobby (DD610). She was primarily used for Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) in both the Mediterranean and Pacific theaters. She servived the war, but would eventually be destroyed as a training target in 1972.
Victories can often be considered Pyrrhic, for example, the "defeat" gained by Bon Homme Richard over Serapis falls within that classification. If Pyrrhic victories are thus allowed in a discussion of when did the first U.S. victory over a British ship occur, then history records the date of 11 October 1776 when 16 American vessels gained a Pyrrhic victory over 30 British vessels at the Battle of Valcour Island. The Americans were under the command of General Benedict Arnold.