Thread: Tunisian losses
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Old 25th March 2005, 10:49
Kari Lumppio Kari Lumppio is offline
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Re: Tunisian losses


For what it is worth.

Of the April 5th, 1943 Ju 52 massacre.

Anton Wöffen (Woeffen if ö is not showing) was one of the escorting JG 27 pilots and was shot down during the battle as was his wingman Uffz Rolf Piltz.

In his book "Ich war kein Jagdflieger-As" Wöffen writes about the battle on p. 118-119*. According Wöffen there was 65 Ju 52s which didn't flew in a concentrated formation but instead "everyone flew as they pleased". Additionally the flight altitude was relatively high, so attacks from below and behind were easy. Also Wöffen mentions that the Lightnings would have been escorting Marauders (these were two scouting Bostons instead?). Wöffen writes that he could see several Lightning formations each consisting of eight planes. According him the first eight P-38 attacked the escorting Bf 109s. Wöffen and Piltz were both down soon.

It is interesting that Wöffen writes 53 out of 65 Ju 52s would have been shot down, when the real numbers seem to be 13 out of 31.

Translator Hannu Valtonen has also added in the book the two losses as:

Uffz Rolf Piltz, MIA air battle 30 km ESE Cap Bon, Bf 109 G-4 Trop; WNr 15062, black 5.

Fw. Anton Wöffen, air battle, parachuted, Bf 109 G-6 Trop, WNr 16423.


PS I for one fail to understand what the argument here is. Does numerical superiority exclude the possibility that the pilots/planes/organization/leadership is equal or better than the opponent with fewer numbers?

*I have the Finnish edition "Sittenkin ässä", published by Koala-kustannus 2003, ISBN 952-5186-45-8.