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-   -   Use of alcohol and drugs by aircrew? (http://forum.12oclockhigh.net/showthread.php?t=60402)

BrianC 27th July 2021 12:44

Use of alcohol and drugs by aircrew?
 
Hi guys

One reads from time to time of the use of alcohol and drugs by aircrew during operations in WWII. Do we know what regulations existed within the various Axis air forces? German, Italian, Japanese. And the outcome when ignored?

Were there any well-known examples?

Just out of interest.

I've post similarly on the Allied site.

Stay safe
Brian

BrianC 27th July 2021 12:47

Use of alcohol and drugs by aircrew.
 
Hi guys

One reads from time to time of the use of alcohol and drugs by aircrew during operations in WWII. Do we know what regulations existed within the various Axis air forces? British, American, Russian. And the outcome when ignored?

Were there any well-known examples?

Just out of interest.

I've post similarly on the Axis site.

Stay safe
Brian

Graham Boak 27th July 2021 12:50

Re: Use of alcohol and drugs by aircrew?
 
Use of benzedrine and other stimulators has been well recorded by both Allied and Axis forces in WW2. Alcohol appears to have been even greater widespread use, including a number of comments on the use of oxygen by fighter pilots to help recover from hangovers. Or are you referring to illegal use of drugs?

Siko54 27th July 2021 12:54

Re: Use of alcohol and drugs by aircrew?
 
Just reread Macky Steinhoff's "Straits of Messina" he talks about taking a few tablets of Pervitin in one go during a transit flight and being grounded for a day by the Wing Doctor when he landed.

Nick Beale 27th July 2021 13:00

Re: Use of alcohol and drugs by aircrew?
 
Neil Page wrote about this on his Falke Eins blog a few years ago: http://falkeeins.blogspot.com/2016/1...d-alcohol.html

Pervitin (methamphetamine) was standard in aircrew survival packs in the Battle Of Britain. In Summer 1940 the Luftwaffe was also busy distributing 2,500,000 bottle of champagne amongst the Luftflotten and the RLM. I'll have something about both these things on a future update to my website.

BrianC 30th July 2021 17:35

Re: Use of alcohol and drugs by aircrew?
 
Many thanks, guys

There are a number of accounts that suggest many Soviet pilots had a quick swig of strong vodka as they departed for battle. I couldn't blame them!

i look forward to your piece, Nick.

Stay safe
Brian

James A Pratt III 16th August 2021 17:32

Re: Use of alcohol and drugs by aircrew?
 
BCRS v4 has: German ace Hans Assi Hann having one drink too many on the day he was shot down.
VVS pilots getting 100 grams of vodka for each kill , the field ration.
The 18 GIAP under Stalin's son Vasly parting hard

There is also the case of a RAF pilot shoe down in the sea during the Dieppe raid who took all his bezedrine pills at once and was soon rescued and came down 2 days later.

Some german NJG pilots did use Pervin from what I have read

James A Pratt III 19th August 2021 19:05

Re: Use of alcohol and drugs by aircrew?
 
men and women of the RAF in England liked to visit pubs. On the night of 26/27 Apr 1941 one was hit by a bomb and a few men of 222 Squadron were KIA including F/Lt B Van Mentz. this is from the Foreman 1941 book and the book "Fly For Your Life"

John Manrho 13th October 2021 22:45

Re: Use of alcohol and drugs by aircrew?
 
Alcohol abuse was widespread in Luftwaffe units, especially late war.

James A Pratt III 19th October 2021 17:11

Re: Use of alcohol and drugs by aircrew?
 
Heavy drinking was common among Russian officers pre-WW I . I understand there was a lot of drug use opium, MJ, and cocaine in Russia during the WW I period.

Herman Goring was a drug addict do to his WW I wounds

WW I German ace Ernst Frieherr Von Athaus was a heroin user according to some accounts.

edwest2 20th October 2021 21:46

Re: Use of alcohol and drugs by aircrew?
 
An overview of the use of Pervitin among the military and civilians.


https://thesecuritydistillery.org/al...are-in-1939-45

keith A 29th October 2021 21:38

Re: Use of alcohol and drugs by aircrew?
 
Neville Duke's war diaries certainly show an affection and a culture for drinking. Both in Britain in 1941 and later in the Middle East he hits the booze every moment he can, always in the company of other pilots, both with his squadron and on leave. Tony Bartley admits he was drinking a bottle of whisky a day in 1943 before finally being taken off ops.

BruceMk11 5th November 2021 09:01

Re: Use of alcohol and drugs by aircrew?
 
I was examining the 1942 diaries for 2/48th Battalion (9th Australian Division) recently and found mention of the court martial of a chap for possession of hashish.

No doubt other servicemen, including aircrew, dabbled during their time in the Middle East.

keith A 6th November 2021 07:45

Re: Use of alcohol and drugs by aircrew?
 
I have also found that SLdr Wally McLeod RCAF was disciplined for regular drunkenness when on his rest tour in 1943 but also Ray Hesselyn, Ken Charney and Johnny Plagis (fellow Malta aces) developed an alcohol dependency post war. Whether this was PTSD or the more common result of no longer experiencing the thrill of combat and combating boredom I cannot say. I believe Sldr John Mungo Park of 74 Squadron also was drinking heavily before he was killed in 1941. The american ace Bill Whisner was disciplined more than once for his drunken outbursts.

Richard Aigner 28th November 2021 21:16

Re: Use of alcohol and drugs by aircrew?
 
somewhat off topic: Valerio Borghese, on p.90 of "Sea Devils", (Italian Original: Decima Flottiglia MAS), writes the Italian crew of the maiale/pig manned torpedoes were fortified "with three tablets of Simpamine and a spoonful of Dextropur...as well as an injection of kidney tissue" for their attack on Gibraltar. What would be the benefit of the kidney tissue?
Richard

richdlc 28th November 2021 21:35

Re: Use of alcohol and drugs by aircrew?
 
The Norman Ohler book 'Blitzed' in really excellent on this subject

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Blitzed-Dru...8131671&sr=8-2

James A Pratt III 8th December 2021 17:15

Re: Use of alcohol and drugs by aircrew?
 
Some of the survivors of Merril's marauders in India after their operation got out of control drunk on a drink called "Bullfight Brandy" which was laced with marajuana. I don't know of any other US military personel in the CBI drank it.

Drug use was widespread in the US military during the later Vietnam war period late 1960s -1970s

Korean war ace M.J. Fernadez was KIC 17 Oct 1980 on Grand Bahama Island flying a plane load of Marajuana. see:
AAHS Journal Winter 1982 Volume 27 No 4 pages 316-318 and wiki


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