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  #61  
Old 28th February 2005, 22:43
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Six Nifty .50s
Quote:
Originally Posted by Christer Bergström
Franek,
I hope no one asked him to prove it. As time passes and memory fades, one Mustang becomes four, and later becomes eight. If no one questions it, maybe he will change it to twenty.
How many aerial victories did he claim?
Six Nifties,

To give credit to Christer, such a scenario doesn't seem too far fetched during the Normandy invasion, the Jagdwaffe was rushed to the front, the Allies were ready in numbers.

Why the irony when its a german pilot and the ready acceptance when its an allied one?

1 vs 4 would be fairly regular, 1 vs 8 as well - wasn't 8 the basic fighting formation late in the war?
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  #62  
Old 28th February 2005, 22:58
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It will be very busy week for me , so only a couple short comments
Don't underestimate Italians. Their torpedo-aircraft hit for example battleship Nelson, their fighter-bombers hit fleet carrier Victorious etc... so don't ignore them so lightly. They accomplished something after all, and in mid-1943 they began to get their 5-series fighters (M.205, G.55 and R. 2005 plus some 110 Bf 109Gs) which gave more effectiveness to their fighter arm, which at last had equal equipment to their opponents. In 1943 in Med Heer accused LW and the Italians, LW probably accused the Italians (who else?). Defeat is always orphan and the fingers are pointing to others. So I'd not put too much weight on German oppinion on this.

On the losses, according to Molony et al book, during a few periods which loss figures I came across when I was looking for the strenght figures the Allied losses were not very much higher, You might have different figures or are you comparing LW claims to LW losses. The LW losses 1.1. - 31.5.43 in Med were appr. 1700 a/c according to Murray's Luftwaffe and above that came the Italian losses. Do You have the Allied losses, which were "much higher" according to You? I know that because of the bad accounting habits of the USAAF in North Africa it is probably impossible to discover the exact USAAF loss figures.

On JGruppen, where You got the achieved victories, or are they claimed victories?

Maybe the Allies had better escort tactics, clearier operational plan etc at least for. example in the Mareth battle their fighter bombers and bombers worked with good effect even if in fighters the Allies didn't have overwhelming superiority. I don't claim that the LW wasn't very good in Tunisia but the Allies were also good and handled their operations well. And I'm not sure that the Germans enjoyed qualitative advantage for exp. in bomber force in Tunisia.

The point of my rather extreme example was that the Germans didn't have more tanks but better operational doctrine for them and better tank generals, and of course better operational plan, that of French played to hands of Germans. So, even if there is many reasons to French defeat the main reason was that the Allies were outgeneraled. BTW the 530 French FT17, FT18 tanks were rather unimportant, being WWI wintage.

At least Allied high command understood that in the total war one needs lot of planes, argued against their political leaders' decisions, which they saw wrong, which is more than could say on the CoS of LW.

Quote: Tähe British AF commanders wasted thousands of aircraft sorties and airmen on virtually useless operations over France in daylight in 1941 and against German population centres. The Western Allies could sure have made use of a more competent air force high command!

One of the reasons of daylight operations in later part of 41 was to attempt to help SU with those meager ways they had. British knew that the achilles heel of Germany was the oil but when they found out that the night bombers didn't find the specific targets they switched to area bombing. I think it was understandable that they tried to hit at least something but freely admit that after the BC got better navigational aids and got the ability to hit specific target, IMHO is that they should have switch away from area bombing. But if You look LW bomber leaders, they got the idea to hit SU's powerplants so late that when they got they aircrews trained to long range navigation the frontline was retreated so far to west that most of the targets were outside the range of their main bomber, He 111. So the plan was scrapped. And here one see the other main problem of LW High Command, that of production planning. Bomber B program was a fiasco to which LW didn't have afford. And in general LW lost one generation of warplanes because of bad procurement system. And if the USAAF lacked escort doctrine the LW doctrine based on Bf 110 wasn't flawless either, even if I had a gut feeling that Bf 110 wasn't so bad than usually claimed.

Perseverance, I meant that even if they had great difficulties in 1941 and 42 against LW and they knew it because of Ultra, they continued to "lean towards France". The problem with qualative edge is that it erose easily under constant stress. Much the same with aggressiveness, this was shown on lower level. I may even say that there were too many over-agressive USAAF pilots, meaning too many attacks on own side a/c. Were they more agressive than Germans, difficult to say but at least CinC of LW seemed to think so. And he should knew that, shouldn't he.

Quote: äPrior to that [Feb. 43], the bulk of the Luftwaffe’s losses were sustained on the Eastern Front

As I have shown earlier, the LW losses in Med in Oct and Nov. 42 were so big that cumulatively it losses in later half of 42 were more severe against Western Allies than against SU. And before 22.6.41 the bulk of LW losses were suffered on other fronts than Eastern. The last sentence is a bad joke, I admit.

Quote: äThe reason is simple - although the British enjoyed a significant numerical superiority against the Luftwaffe in both the Wets and the Mediterranean from mid-1941 and throughout 1942, it was not until the Americans arrived to add their huge numbers to those of the British that the Western Allies achieved such a numerical superiority that they could start wearing down the Luftwaffe.

I really don't agree, IMHO You miss the qualitative progress of British AFs.

After all more than a couple comments.
Tyvärr I'm very busy in this week, maybe we can continue this argument later.

Juha
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  #63  
Old 28th February 2005, 23:10
Franek Grabowski Franek Grabowski is offline
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Ruy
Quote:
Why the irony when its a german pilot and the ready acceptance when its an allied one?
Well, you should read comments of Polish pilots when they heard of multiple claims of US B-17 gunners in the late 1942! The same one that caused a lot of laugh at Abbeville!
6's comment is quite valid though I do not think it exagerated in time. Please look at memoirs of Rudel when he describes a massacre done by Mustangs over SE (then S) Poland in 1944.

Andy
Quote:
You have a point - some of those 'heroic' rammings lauded by the press 60 years later perhaps were a result of simple collisions and ended up with the pilots' shooting a line, no doubt helped along by the press of the day.
Doubtless, but there were some deeds of heroism or... stupidity! It just needs proper research and recognition and to filter out propaganda. I perfectly remember a talk with the late Skalski, who on the first day of war landed near a downed Henschel and personally took the crew POW. He said: people always ask me why I did it. I do not know, I was stupid! Friends were telling me that I will regret that. I do! I have to talk about that all the time!

Christer
Quote:
Luftflotte 3 fighter strength (source: Prien, “JG 1/11”, p. 1004)
Just check how many aircraft went through the units during the June.

Quote:
Actually, in December 1944, in sheer numbers the Allied numerical superiority was less strong that it had been in June 1944.
In France?
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  #64  
Old 1st March 2005, 01:18
Six Nifty .50s Six Nifty .50s is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruy Horta
1 vs 4 would be fairly regular, 1 vs 8 as well - wasn't 8 the basic fighting formation late in the war?
Close to the battlefront that may have been the case, but in general that was not true. It would seem that Christer does not appreciate the basic principle of attack used by the Germans -- one that was equally popular with their air, ground, and naval services.

In reality, the Allied fighter escorts were dispersed over great distances whereas the Germans tended to schwerpunkt, or concentrate their fighters at certain locations. For that reason, the majority of escort pilots did not see German planes. The Germans looked for gaps in the fighter coverage and failing that, they simply tried to overwhelm the fighter escorts at the point of attack (with numbers, not aerobatics). As a result the Allied fighter pilots were sometimes outnumbered locally.

In a perfect world, the Allies could magically predict exactly where the Germans would attack the heavy bombers and then all of the escorts would appear to meet them there. If that were possible, the Jagdwaffe would have been destroyed much sooner.
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  #65  
Old 1st March 2005, 06:25
Six Nifty .50s Six Nifty .50s is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Franek Grabowski
Quote:
Why the irony when its a german pilot and the ready acceptance when its an allied one?
Well, you should read comments of Polish pilots when they heard of multiple claims of US B-17 gunners in the late 1942! The same one that caused a lot of laugh at Abbeville!
Yes, there's always laughs to be had at someone else's expense Franek. You like to return to that subject, which is good because it ties in with your previous remarks about the Seafire.

After Operation Avalanche, it is safe to say that USAAF A-36 pilots had no respect at all for the flying skills of British Navy pilots. Major Joseph Kelly of the 27th Fighter-Bomber Group described typical encounters with the FAA, which indicates that their training left much to be desired:

" Some British aircraft carriers were providing Seafire aircraft for the patrol line between Salerno and Capri. They lasted about a week! Word was that they damaged all of their aircraft trying to land on the carriers. They spent most of their time when they were aloft, attacking the other Allied aircraft which were also on patrol. At first, we took evasive action. Later, because of their vague idea of what constituted a 'curve of pursuit', we did not pay much attention to them. We figured that they needed the practice but they never seemed to get themselves into a position where they could do damage to another aircraft! "

The Brits deployed 106 Seafires on their carriers and flew 713 'combat' sorties. 83 Seafires were wrecked or seriously damaged in landing accidents (32 were total write-offs). The Seafire pilots claimed two German planes shot down, although that is unlikely. If they shot down any planes, they were probably friendlies.

There's an amusing sidebar to this story. Some weeks earlier, the USAAF loaned six A-36As to the RAF for No. 1437 Flight, because the Spitfire was measured and found wanting. This unit did special recon work for the ground forces. On August 17, 1943, Flight Lieutenant J. L. Griffith and his wingman were scouting some roads near the Italian coast when they were misidentified as Me 109s and jumped in error by two Spitfires of No. 43 Squadron. The Mustang pilots then assumed that they were under attack by Me 109s. In self-defense, they out-manuevered the Spitfires and Griffith latched onto the tail of Spitfire BR290, which was shot down in flames. Flight Lieutenant N.W. Lee baled out safely and splashed down into the sea. Before Griffith returned to base, he was hit by flak and baled out, also landing in the water. A Walrus was dispatched and it soon arrived. Guess who was aboard but Flight Lieutenant Lee.

It must have been an interesting conversation.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Franek Grabowski
6's comment is quite valid though I do not think it exagerated in time.
I'm not surprised by the comments of Hans-Ekkehard Bob and Joseph Kelly. Fighter pilots are competitive and it's natural for them to belittle pilots from other air forces. But there is an important difference here; the Mustang had a good combat record, and the Seafire did not.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Franek Grabowski
Please look at memoirs of Rudel when he describes a massacre done by Mustangs over SE (then S) Poland in 1944!
I wouldn't know what Rudel bandied about, but he had zero credibility with some of his fellow ground attack pilots. Members of SG 2 referred to Rudel as selfish, childish, a poor leader, and a political extremist. They also thought Rudel was a flake because he refused to fly an Fw 190 like his subordinates. Instead he clung to his beloved Stuka which belonged in a museum by 1945.
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  #66  
Old 1st March 2005, 07:31
Franek Grabowski Franek Grabowski is offline
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Quote:
Yes, there's always laughs to be had at someone else's expense Franek. You like to return to that subject, which is good because it ties in with your previous remarks about the Seafire.
Well, yes but perhaps at another thread?

Quote:
After Operation Avalanche, it is safe to say that USAAF A-36 pilots had no respect at all for the flying skills of British Navy pilots. Major Joseph Kelly of the 27th Fighter-Bomber Group described typical encounters with the FAA, which indicates that their training left much to be desired:
Well, I will leave any comments to our British friends.

Quote:
The Brits deployed 106 Seafires on their carriers and flew 722 'combat' sorties. 83 Seafires were wrecked or seriously damaged in landing accidents (32 were total write-offs).
No Seafire stats on my part, so cannot comment but I recall US P-40 pilots in CBI/SWP were also quite good in destruction of own aircraft.

Quote:
The Seafire pilots claimed two German planes shot down, although that is unlikely. If they shot down any planes, they were probably friendlies.
Well, your supposition is not a proof. Quite a lot of RAF pilots believe a bulk of USAAF claims were RAF Spitfires. I am still looking who shot up Poles over Antwerp on 4.05.1943.

Quote:
A Walrus was dispatched and it soon arrived. Guess who was aboard but Flight Lieutenant Lee.
It must have been an interesting conversation.
I am wondering what Horby told to Lee when he was back. Hmm, I had an email addy for J Norby King somewhere.

Quote:
I'm not surprised by the comments of Hans-Ekkehard Bob and Joseph Kelly. Fighter pilots are competitive and it's natural for them to belittle pilots from other air forces. But there is a important difference here; the Mustang had a good combat record, and the Seafire did not.
Not necessarily. A friendly fighter pilot was of high regard of Canadian pilots whom he instructed in OTU. Americans of 94 FS were of highest regard of Polish pilots of 303 Sqn.
I never wrote Mustang was a bad aircraft but it was never used as a carrier borne fighter.

Quote:
I wouldn't know what Rudel bandied about, but he had zero credibility with some of his fellow ground attack pilots. Members of SG 2 referred to Rudel as selfish, childish, a poor leader, and a political extremist. They also thought Rudel was a flake because he refused to fly an Fw 190 like his subordinates. Instead he clung to his beloved Stuka which belonged in a museum by 1945.
Well, he saw much more Mustangs than there were around. A rather limited field of error in Poland in 1944.
As to Rudel, I have heard he was a NS hardcore but at least he had balls not to become a democrat like so many did. I am wondering what was influence of his political views on post war comments on him.
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  #67  
Old 1st March 2005, 19:44
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Thanks Franek good point
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