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AtlantikEel
08-11-2008, 12:40 PM
From u-boat.net for August 11:

1943
The sinking of U-468
The pilot of the B-24 Liberator, Flying Officer Lloyd Trigg RNZAF, that sank the U-468 but perished with his entire crew in the attack was awarded the Victoria Cross based solely on the testimony of the officers of the U-boat, including its commander Klemens Schamong. This was the only such case in the war where a statement from the enemy resulted in such a high decoration. The aircraft pressed home its attack even though it was extremely low and on fire, a case of incredible bravery.

klcarroll
08-11-2008, 02:58 PM
A "thumbs-Up!" to Flying Officer Lloyd Trigg RNZAF!!!

Brave men should always be remembered with honor!! http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif

klcarroll

Kaleun1961
08-11-2008, 04:44 PM
I nominate the B-24 as the aerial platform most influential in the Allied victory in the Battle of the Atlantic. Had the prosecutors paid less attention to "Bomber" Harris, more 4-engined bombers would have been devoted to ASW patrols insted of being hoarded for the night bombing and thus would have resulted in far fewer sinkings of merchant vessels and loss of life. As it was, in my opinion, the relatively few numbers of heavy bombers serving in the Atlantic contributed more toward victory, in allowing the logisitical buildup which underpins any successful military campaign. As the saying goes, "Amateurs study tactics, professionals study logistics."

Good post, Eel. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif

Kielhauler1961
08-11-2008, 05:46 PM
@ Kaleun1961:

I agree with you on your first point about the B-24, but there were much wider issues at stake. The Battle for the Atlantic was largely 'out of sight' for most British people, who, after the fall of France, stood alone in the front-line against Nazi aggression.

Until victory at El Alamein, Bomber Command was the only offensive weapon with which we could hit back directly. It has it's detractors but, at the time, it was seriously important for public morale to know that we were "carrying the war to the enemy".

The visibility of bombers taking off each night did much to lift spirits. 20/20 hindsight is a wonderful tool. Training a maritime pilot takes longer than a "land-lubber" pilot and requires a far higher standard of navigational skill and physical fitness (patrols lasting up to 20 hours).

The Empire Training Pilots' Scheme (ETPS) only really got into third gear in 1940 and wasn't producing sufficiently well trained aircrew until mid-1942 at the earliest. Not much point in having the aircraft if you don't have the crews to exploit the aeroplane's abilities to the full.

Just look at how the Japanese started hostilities: a small cadre of veteran pilots but a totally inadequate replacement/training system.

Sorry to go on at such length but this is a topic very close to my heart. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

AtlantikEel
08-11-2008, 07:11 PM
Had the bombing (both night and day) been more accurate, there would be fewer detractors of the aerial bombing of Germany. While the R.A.F. night bombing was less accurate than the U.S. daylight effort in the early years , by the last year of the war the R.A.F. were hitting targets very accurately both day and night ... and in some cases (particularly, but not exclusively, 617 Squadron) exceeding American accuracy.
Though I agree that more four engine aircraft were needed for ASW, I do not fault Arthur Harris for refusing to release his aircraft and crews to the maritme effort. Many more u-boats would have been available without the bombing of factories and dockyards, and many more men available for the front lines if not required for home defense (FLAK).
Just as an aside, the B-24 had a lower loss rate than the B-17.

klcarroll
08-11-2008, 09:43 PM
@Kielhauler1961;

Realizing that you're a citizen of the U.K., I found your statement to be very interesting; "The Battle for the Atlantic was largely 'out of sight' for most British people,....."

I had always assumed that the shortages caused by the U-Boat blockade would have been a severe and daily burden to the average person; ....Making the U-Boat war a high priority in the mind of the average "man-on-the-street".

klcarroll

Kielhauler1961
08-12-2008, 01:56 AM
@ klcarroll:

Merchant shipping losses were largely concealed from the public during the war. British "home front" propaganda was very subtle, and successful, in concealing the true state of affairs. Outside of the major convoy ports (Liverpool, Glasgow etc..) where the truth was widely known but not overtly discussed, people just didn't know about the scale of the losses. The lack of pre-war items and luxuries was accepted as a "casualty of war" and people just made the best of it as they could. If "Grumbling" was an Olympic sport, Britain would win Gold every time!

Shortages came about immediately war started, partly because the convoy system was not as an efficient method of bring in supplies as free-roaming ships and there was an immediate 20% drop in imports. Then, of course, the ships were bringing-in things we hadn't had much use for before the war: tanks, ammo etc.. and therefore less room for proper foodstuffs. That said, the nutritional value of the well-balanced diet of the rationing system actually led to an overall improvement in public health!

I remember as a child when I made some stupid remark about "Americans" (sorry, I know you prefer the term "US Citizen" but it's what I said at the time), my mother slapped me down pretty hard. She said "If it wasn't for the kindness and generosity of the American people you wouldn't be here now! We relied on food-aid stamped with the label "A Gift from the People of America."

My father survived two years of naval air combat mainly because somebody had the wit to give him a decent aircraft to fly - the Grumman TBF Avenger http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/11.gif http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/11.gif http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/11.gif. Otherwise it would have been the Barracuda http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_eek.gif.

I'd better stop now, or this is going to develop into a book. Like I said before, I feel passionately about this subject because it had such a direct impact on my parents lives.

Good ol' USA, Canada, India, Australia, New Zealand and the other allies for helping lil' ol' Britain make it through the darkest days... http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif

It's disheartening to hear ignorant, throw-away comments from people "bashing" the USA. Educated people know that U.S. Citizens, irrespective of their current President, are amongst the most warm-hearted, kindest and generous people in the world.

Blimey! I thought I said I would stop? I will now, promise... http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_rolleyes.gif

KH.

Leandros1945
08-12-2008, 03:05 AM
Originally posted by AtlantikEel:
Had the bombing (both night and day) been more accurate, there would be fewer detractors of the aerial bombing of Germany. While the R.A.F. night bombing was less accurate than the U.S. daylight effort in the early years , by the last year of the war the R.A.F. were hitting targets very accurately both day and night ... and in some cases (particularly, but not exclusively, 617 Squadron) exceeding American accuracy.
Though I agree that more four engine aircraft were needed for ASW, I do not fault Arthur Harris for refusing to release his aircraft and crews to the maritme effort. Many more u-boats would have been available without the bombing of factories and dockyards, and many more men available for the front lines if not required for home defense (FLAK).
Just as an aside, the B-24 had a lower loss rate than the B-17.
They had almost the same problem on the other side. Dønitz was yelling for Luftwaffe long-range recce and units to protect his U-boot routes in and out of France - but didn't get it.

klcarroll
08-12-2008, 04:31 AM
@Kielhauler1961;

Thank you for your comprehensive reply to my question!

I had no idea that the U-Boat menace was so effectively concealed from the British General Public! (....maybe "down-played" would be a more accurate word than "concealed"?)

klcarroll

klcarroll
08-12-2008, 04:36 AM
Dønitz was yelling for Luftwaffe long-range recce and units to protect his U-boot routes in and out of France - but didn't get it.

Well, .....You know what Socko thinks of the Luftwaffe!! http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/88.gif http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/88.gif http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/88.gif http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/88.gif http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/88.gif


klcarroll

Kielhauler1961
08-12-2008, 07:33 AM
"The First Casualty of War is Truth".

Can't remember who it's attributed to, I think it was Bugs Bunny. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif

@ klcarroll: No, "concealed" is exactly the right word. That's why I used it... http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

PhantomKira
08-12-2008, 02:18 PM
Just as an aside, the B-24 had a lower loss rate than the B-17

Really? I know there were far more B-24s built, but I've also heard - too many times to ignore - that the B-17 was of far stronger (better) construction. Maybe that's just myth, but there's also the B-17 comeback to the B-24 crowd "You may take more bombs to the target, but we come back more often!" Sounds, then, like this is an incorrect statement...?

AtlantikEel
08-12-2008, 07:25 PM
Originally posted by PhantomKira:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content"> Just as an aside, the B-24 had a lower loss rate than the B-17

Really? I know there were far more B-24s built, but I've also heard - too many times to ignore - that the B-17 was of far stronger (better) construction. Maybe that's just myth, but there's also the B-17 comeback to the B-24 crowd "You may take more bombs to the target, but we come back more often!" Sounds, then, like this is an incorrect statement...? </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

This is something that I found hard to believe when I first read it, but it made enough of an impression for me to remember it. I believe the statement was to the effect that taking into account the overall numbers of each type sent into combat during the war, the B-24's loss percentage was lower.
I am trying to locate the source, and will pass it along when I find it.

Kaleun1961
08-12-2008, 08:53 PM
I heard the same thing on a television documentary the other night, that more B-24's were produced than B-17's. Floored me a bit when I heard it, too. One has the impression of B-17's and P-51's knocking the stuffing out of the Luftwaffe, but B-24's also participated in signicant numbers in Europe. I suppose, without any actual data to hand, that the B-17's made the most perilous penetrations. Also, B-24's were used more often than B-17's in a tactical role. As well as their ASW patrols in the Atlantic, they were used in various roles in the Pacific theatre, such as for interdiction, port bombardment, etc. The RAF flem them, but I can't seem to recall ever seeing a B-17 under British operations.

Kielhauler1961
08-13-2008, 01:32 AM
This is without a doubt the weirdest photo of a B-17 that I have ever come across. Apparently, after the loss of the cockpit to flak, it flew on for another few minutes with the engines still running, allowing the surviving crew to bail out.
http://i283.photobucket.com/albums/kk295/kielhauler/0078vt1.jpg

@ Kaleun1961, just for you: B-17C Fortress I, 1940.
http://i283.photobucket.com/albums/kk295/kielhauler/742px-B-17C_with_RAF_colors1.jpg

Mittelwaechter
08-13-2008, 06:24 AM
German B-17 (http://www.warbirdsresourcegroup.org/LRG/b17fortress.html)

klcarroll
08-13-2008, 06:48 AM
@Mittelwaechter;

Cool Stuff!! ...I hadn't seen those pictures before. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif

klcarroll

Realjambo
08-13-2008, 06:59 AM
This is without a doubt the weirdest photo of a B-17 that I have ever come across. Apparently, after the loss of the cockpit to flak, it flew on for another few minutes with the engines still running, allowing the surviving crew to bail out.

That's quite an eerie photo, isn't it? http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_eek.gif

I recall footage of a Harrier flying along quite happily, straight and level... but with no pilot.

He had ejected and another aircraft flew alongside and tracked the doomed Harrier until it ditched.

.... How long before 'King of Google' Celeon posts a you tube link? http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif

K_Freddie
08-13-2008, 05:20 PM
Originally posted by Realjambo:
.... How long before 'King of Google' Celeon posts a you tube link? http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif
Ah! Our provebial youtube linker ... Das goed Ja ? http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif