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-   -   Ground kills. How they were credited to LW fighter pilots? (http://forum.12oclockhigh.net/showthread.php?t=17926)

Nikita Egorov 19th August 2009 08:56

Ground kills. How they were credited to LW fighter pilots?
 
Gentlemen,

This question emerged after researching many cases, when Soviet planes were strafed and destoryed on the ground after being shot up in the airial combats by Me-109s and also after airfield attacks usually by 2-4 Me-109s. Were this kills included in the official airial victories records for LW pilot, who claimed them or there was separate list of kills claimed on the ground. Can claims marked as "bodennahe" in TW list be ground kills?
There is an example: 2 Boston claimed by Lt. Roisch and Fw. Schluter of 1/JG3 on 12 July 1942 clearly corresponds by time with two Boston's destoryed by strafing attack of 2 Me-109 on Novo-Melovatka airfield that day. Does it mean that ground kills were included in the list of airial victories?

TIA

Dénes Bernád 19th August 2009 13:54

Re: Ground kills. How they were credited to LW fighter pilots?
 
That's a very good question.
AFAIK, ground 'kills' were not officially counted as air victories for Luftwaffe fighter pilots (by contrast, they were in ARR). On the other hand, destroyed tanks were counted in the Schlacht pilots' tally.

Referring to the particular incident you mentioned, it's quite plausible the Luftwaffe pilots reported enemy aircraft destroyed on the ground as "shot down while flying at low level", or "while taking off/landing"...

Nokose 19th August 2009 14:18

Re: Ground kills. How they were credited to LW fighter pilots?
 
Ground strafe kills from everything I've read didn't count as air victories. Other wise the 22Jun41 would have put a lot of pilots score way up there. As Denes noted planes taking off or landing just off the ground would probably be considered an air victory. I've also read about Luftwaffe pilots finishing off aircraft that forced landed after a dogfight to insure its destruction but only the pilot that brought it down received the credit.

yogybär 19th August 2009 19:28

Re: Ground kills. How they were credited to LW fighter pilots?
 
Well possible that one of the sides didn't report 100% truth.

Especially for the german pilots it would have been pretty easy - if they flew in Rotte, there were no other witnesses. This is quite possible because there is no other claim in the kill-list of I./JG3 at that specific time (6:42 in the morning).

Nikita Egorov 20th August 2009 09:06

Re: Ground kills. How they were credited to LW fighter pilots?
 
Gentlemen,

Thanks for your answers, however the question has not got any distinct explanation. I see another discrapancy in this case. I checked Prien's volume and there are no info on place and altitude of the claims. The story from Soviet side goes like that:

"at 7.40 a Pe-2 returning from mission take a pair of Me-109s on the sovkhoz Vorobievskiy field (my mistake: Nowo-Melovatka was raided on the previous day). Pe-2 was shot down while landing with crew killed. Afterwards 2 Me-109s strafed the planes on the field, getting two B-3s of 860 BAP and 1 B-3 of 794 BAP caught fire and burned to ashes..."

No claim for Pe-2 can be found for the corresponding time. But Schluter claimed one Pe-2 on the evening of the previous day with no Soviet background for this claim reported...

My question referring mostly to the specialists on the Western front and Africa: were there any clearly defined cases when German pilots claimed purely ground kills as airial?

Another example from the Eastern front activities:
11.11.1942 group of Ju-88s under the escort of II/JG52 attacked Lasarevskoje raiway station in the morning. Weak fighter cover was effectively bounced by II/JG52, that claimed two victories (Steinhoff and Haberda). One Yak-1 was shot down and another badly shot up. Pilot, Mladshiy Leitenant Chernov managed to make belly-landing on the Lasarevskoje field and flee from his stricken plane that was set on fire after landing by strafing Me-109. That can correspond to Krupinski's claim marked as "bodennahe" and difference in 10 minutes between claims of Steihoff, Haberda and Krupinski can be explained as occasioanl technical mistake while reporting. Afterwards, Krupinski claimed in combat another fighter that can be also found in Soviet records. Thus, we have four German claims against two Soviet planes shot down, one damaged and destroyed by a strafing attack on the ground...

Nokose 21st August 2009 04:57

Re: Ground kills. How they were credited to LW fighter pilots?
 
Don Caldwell might be the person to ask this question since he wrote the history on JG26. They were involved in raids on airfields in Britian and Malta.


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