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Old 11th April 2020, 08:41
Morten Jessen Morten Jessen is offline
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eArticle available: 'The Life of Günter Schultze-Quentell - A Reluctant Airman'

Hej all

We are happy to announce another eArticle biography. This time about reconnaissance airman and pilot Günter Schultze-Quentell.

Hundreds of famous fighter aces, Stuka pilots and bomber leaders served in the Luftwaffe, but the vast majority of its flying personnel comprised anonymous men doing their duty without fuss and attention. One of these men was Günter Schultze-Quentell, and he is the subject of our latest biography eArticle, titled ‘A Reluctant Airman’, available here: The Life of Günter Schultze-Quentell

Unlike so many wartime flying personnel in the German air force, Günter was not motivated by a love of flying. He had joined the German army prior to the outbreak of the Second World War, and thoroughly enjoyed the time he spent with that branch of the military. Thus he was most unhappy when he was ordered to the Luftwaffe to become an observer in the Henschel 126 and Fieseler 156 Storch. However, over time, he began to enjoy the flying more, and he participated in his first missions over France in mid-1940.

We mentioned Günter on a few occasions in our 2.(H)/14 eArticle, available here, because he was a key member of the unit between 1940 and 1943, and we were very fortunate to make contact with his family. Günter was killed during the war, but he left behind a widow and two children, and his daughter has been kind enough to share all the material the family has about her father, including his sadly unfinished wartime memoirs, and some documents and photographs. With all this material, plus what we had gathered in our own 2.(H)/14 research, we felt we simply had to tell his story, and the result is this fifteen-page eArticle.

Illustrated by twenty photographs, the story covers Günter’s early life and army career, his reluctant transition to become an airman in the early stages of the war, his combat debut over France, the early North African campaign, and then his time as a pilot and unit leader in Italy and Albania in 1943 and 1944. ‘A Reluctant Airman’ can be purchased here. The Life of Günter Schultze-Quentell

Take care and stay healthy!

All the best
The Air War Publications Team

Air War Publications
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Old 12th April 2020, 04:51
leonventer leonventer is offline
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Re: eArticle available: 'The Life of Günter Schultze-Quentell - A Reluctant Airman'

I purchased and very much liked this article, so I figured I'd provide a quick review:

Nearly all of the available Luftwaffe biographies focus, quite understandably, on the Experten. They tell the stories of pilots with exceptional reflexes and great situational awareness, who took to the skies with supreme confidence in the skills and experience they had acquired over many years. However, that certainly wasn't true for the bulk of the aircrew who served in the German air force. Most of them were ordinary men who didn't survive very long, due to inadequate training, overwhelming opposition, and increasing inferiority in aircraft performance.

Günter Schultze-Quentell is the subject of this new eArticle by Air War Pubs, and he wasn't an ace. He wasn't even someone who was "born to fly." Nevertheless, he served a distinguished and relatively long career in various roles in different branches of the Wehrmacht, eventually becoming a pilot and the Staffelkapitän of a short-range reconnaissance unit, flying the Bf 109 G-8. It's a sad story because (spoiler alert) he dies in a wholly mismatched confrontation, due to circumstances beyond his control.

I really appreciate accounts like this because they provide insights into the more typical aircrew experience, as well as the essential but more mundane and less-publicized aspects of service in the Luftwaffe, namely logistics, unit administration and relocation, and the roles played by observers and gunners.

The article is well researched and makes for enjoyable reading. It's complemented by a map and a fine selection of photos of people and aircraft, especially some high-quality images of "White 14+", a spectacularly-camouflaged Bf 109 G-8 of 1./NAGr. 12.

This work is up to the usual high standards of Air War Publications, and is highly recommended.

Leon Venter
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Old 14th April 2020, 03:06
Andrew Arthy Andrew Arthy is online now
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Re: eArticle available: 'The Life of Günter Schultze-Quentell - A Reluctant Airman'

Hi Leon,

Thanks very much for your nice words about the article - we're glad you enjoyed it. It started out as a Word document to be shared with Günter’s daughter, nieces and nephews. However, it soon became obvious that it had potential as an eArticle.

We like telling stories of all those involved in the air war of 1939-1945, and one of our next eArticles will be about a gunner from a Zerstörergeschwader. Hopefully it is as well-received as the Günter Schultze-Quentell story.

Cheers,
Andrew A.
Air War Publications - www.airwarpublications.com
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Old 14th April 2020, 17:19
edwest2 edwest2 is offline
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Re: eArticle available: 'The Life of Günter Schultze-Quentell - A Reluctant Airman'

Hello Leon,

Your review is appreciated. I do not agree with the statement "increasing inferiority in aircraft performance." If anything, it was greater numbers of Allied aircraft and thousand bomber raids that kept most of the Luftwaffe on the ground in such heavily outnumbered engagements. The order was to go up if there was a chance of making a difference.

Best,
Ed
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Old 15th April 2020, 03:46
leonventer leonventer is offline
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Re: eArticle available: 'The Life of Günter Schultze-Quentell - A Reluctant Airman'

Hi Ed,
Quote:
Originally Posted by edwest2
I do not agree with the statement "increasing inferiority in aircraft performance."
I was referring to the fact that, at war's end, the types making up the bulk of the Tagjagd (i.e. the Bf 109 G/K and Fw 190 A) were at a disadvantage compared to their top Allied counterparts (e.g. the P-51, P-47, Yak-9, etc.)

The Fw 190 A is my favorite aircraft, but it suffered at altitude. The 109 was showing its age and was technically outclassed by then. Both types were hampered by increasingly poor production quality, leading to a performance loss of 5 to 10%, according to the US Strategic Bombing Survey's Aircraft Division Industry Report.

Of course, fighters like the Me 262, Me 163 and the Ta 152 were clearly superior, but there were too few of them to make a difference.

Quote:
Originally Posted by edwest2
If anything, it was greater numbers of Allied aircraft and thousand bomber raids that kept most of the Luftwaffe on the ground in such heavily outnumbered engagements.
No disagreement there. That's why I listed the effect of disproportionate forces before aircraft performance.

Thanks as always for your contributions,
Leon Venter
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