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> The most effective air force in WW2
Der Maresal
Posted: August 08, 2004 03:33 am
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[quote]
AS for teh best, IMO, it was the USAAF, followed by the RAF and only then the Luftwaffe and the VVS. The rest were too small to even be compared with the big players.
The USAAF had teh capability to carry out any kind of mission, from strategic to tactical, something which only the RAF could do. The Luftwaffe and the VVS were limited mostly to tactical missions, which they did very well in most cases. The Germans carried out a strategic bombing campaign against Britain, but were hardly as successfull as the USAAF and RAF were later on.[/quote]
:shock:

:nope:

If you include Stategic bombing of Cities with phosphorous and incendiary bombs, dropped on purpose on civilians, - the famillies of the soldiers at the front, and on their ancient medieval monuments to purposely demoralize them and thus shorten the end of the war - then the Anglo Americans have my vote. Arthur Harris said that if you can't get "Kraut" in his factory when he's working there, you can get him in his home when he sleeps" - not only this man had an obsessive hatread for the Germans, but never felt anthing after the war for what he had done. He had abosolutely no regretts, and neither did Tibbits of the USAAF who dropped the Atomic bomb. If most effective Airforce for you means thousands of bombers reducing cities to ashes to shorten the end of the war - then go ahead and vote for the Anglo-Americans, but in terms of skill and chivalry, and in fair air to air battle the pilots of the Luftwaffe are at the top of the list.
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Der Maresal
Posted: August 08, 2004 04:26 am
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[quote]
Actually it's the Bundesluftwaffe I think.
[/quote]

Yeah,..right.. o:)
And Germany is also called Bundesrepublik .., but to each of it's citizens of teutonic origin. - it's called Deutschland, as it was always called.

The germans feel todat that by putting the name "federal" before everything it makes it sound more 'democratic', and distances them from the past.

BTW: Romania was not called "Republica Populara Socialista R..." - but who on earth called it that? It's called Romania ( . )

* After the war the allies powers - all of them- intended to shape their conquered price into a 'peacefull' & tame society of Agrarians. A small symbolic army, intended to serve the interestes of Allied Command Europe, was created for this american protectorate.
Anything that had "Agressive :mad: " names like "Macht - Force" or Waffe, Waffen.., Krieg, Kriegs' ...arms, power, might, war...these words had to dissepear from the German vocabulary! :o
The Luftwaffe was the only one that kept it's name, partically because it fought well, and partially because it was hard to find a better name for it.

:smg:
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Dr_V
Posted: August 08, 2004 09:14 am
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Do we have a German speaking member here? 'Cause if I'm not mistaking "luftwaffe" means just "air forces" in German and I don't think that the name could be changed...
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Victor
Posted: August 08, 2004 10:47 am
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Do not use double standards. Just because the Luftwaffe wasn't capable of conducting such raids, didn't mean it wouldn't do it could. See Coventry, London etc. during BoB and before that Guernica in the Spanish civil war.

The initial question was not about the most ethical air force, but about the best. And, I repeat, the USAAF had no contestant, with the exception of the RAF, simply because it could carry out any task given to it and wasn't limited to tactical duties like the Luftwaffe or the VVS.
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johnny_bi
Posted: August 08, 2004 01:15 pm
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[quote]simply because it could carry out any task given to it[/quote]

Including bombing Dresden and so on...
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Der Maresal
Posted: August 08, 2004 10:26 pm
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[quote]...I repeat, the USAAF had no contestant....,[/quote]


An 'effective"Airforce" indeed.

(IMG:http://img15.exs.cx/img15/2446/DresdenHolocaust.jpg)
(IMG:http://img15.exs.cx/img15/3708/DresdenTote3.jpg)
(IMG:http://img15.exs.cx/img15/6811/dresden_Altmarkt_pyre.jpg)

(IMG:http://img25.exs.cx/img25/8181/6283.jpg)(IMG:http://img25.exs.cx/img25/6539/6284.jpg)(IMG:http://img25.exs.cx/img25/3270/6285.jpg)(IMG:http://img25.exs.cx/img25/2826/6286.jpg)(IMG:http://img25.exs.cx/img25/78/6287.jpg)(IMG:http://img25.exs.cx/img25/6674/6288.jpg)(IMG:http://img25.exs.cx/img25/6376/6289.jpg)(IMG:http://img25.exs.cx/img25/4383/6290.jpg)(IMG:http://img25.exs.cx/img25/7159/6292.jpg)(IMG:http://img25.exs.cx/img25/1726/6291.jpg)
These images are from a movie made by Spiegel TV.

(IMG:http://img15.exs.cx/img15/8646/File0075.jpg)
(IMG:http://img15.exs.cx/img15/8319/Dresden-Color.jpg)
(IMG:http://img50.exs.cx/img50/663/Leichenberg4.jpg)
Picture are either from http://www.fpp.co.uk/online, the rest from my private collaction, and not from the internet.

One more thing needs clarification.

Luftwaffe weapons were shaped for precision bombing and tactical bombing , - like the Stuka. Strategic bombers that fly over continents carrying large payloads, comming in by the hundreads - it an Anglo-American wetdream - not a german one.

When bombing cities - "a bomb that dropped 300 meters from target, was considered "On Target".

Effective airforce indeed.
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Victor
Posted: August 09, 2004 09:51 am
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I told you not to use double standards.
Just search the web for:
- Guernica (see for example http://www.tamu.edu/mocl/picasso/study/history.html)
- Coventry (see for example http://www.cwn.org.uk/heritage/blitz/)
- London (see for example http://london.allinfo-about.com/features/blitz.html)
etc. and you will see that the USAAF and RAF were not the only air forces carrying out such raids and that the Luftwaffe als odid it while it could.

As I already told you, I do not see what ethics have do to with effectiveness, especially in war like WW2. Your personal dislike of the US shouldn't, at least theoretically, impeach from seeing this.
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dead-cat
Posted: August 12, 2004 09:19 pm
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QUOTE
Do we have a German speaking member here? 'Cause if I'm not mistaking \"luftwaffe\" means just \"air forces\" in German and I don't think that the name could be changed...


Luftwaffe=air force
Bundesluftwaffe= federal air force. (everything is called "federal" in Germany, Bundeswehr, Bundesmarine etc.)
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Jeff_S
Posted: August 12, 2004 10:23 pm
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I have to agree with Victor here. Many have noted the strengths of some air forces in different areas -- technical quality, or the bravery and skill of their pilots. And Chandernagore's right -- the American air forces (USAAF, USN, USMC) performed very poorly in the early years of the war, especially for a wealthy country who by December 1941 had over two years of watching other countries to see what worked and what did not.

But by 1945 they accomplished the full range of missions assigned to them -- tactical, strategic, and support -- in both the European and Pacific regions. To me, effectiveness is not "who had the best pilot" or "who had the best plane" -- the Americans had neither. But they played a key role in bringing victory, and that counts for a lot. Only the British RAF comes close.

As for the "ethics" issue, the Americans did not invent terror bombing, we were just the most effective at it (Hiroshima, Nagasaki, Tokyo, Dresden, etc.). Just read some of the German statements about the value of bombing in intimidating the civilian population, and you will know "chivalry" was not high on the Luftwaffe's task list. (And you could add Warsaw, Rotterdam, and others to the list of Luftwaffe targets) They just weren't as effective. The He-111 and Do-17 simply weren't up to the job. The B-17, B-24, and B-29, escorted by the P-51, were.

Cheers, Jeff

P.S. My father was on Okinawa in August 1945, preparing for the invasion of Japan, so I might never have been born if not for the atomic bomb. I accept this may be clouding my judgment.
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i16stealth
Posted: August 13, 2004 07:25 am
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Denes said:
---
Maybe 'I16Stealth' can give us further details.
---

For my opinion, "effectiveness" can be explained as "smb, who done its work well". In case of air forces it means that an effective air force executes all the objectives that "stands in front of it". For example, FAF pilots made many kills, but they couldn't defend their territory from bombing. This force is to small to be effective, I think.

To Dr_V: You greatly underestimate the role of VVS in WW2. You've a lack information about it and it seems that all such information you've got is written in USA.
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dead-cat
Posted: August 13, 2004 01:20 pm
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QUOTE

The B-17, B-24, and B-29, escorted by the P-51, were

AFAIK the He 111 could carry a heavier bombload than the B17.
unescorted bombers are allways a problem (as the allies found out during the raid on Schweinfurt for example). and during BoB the german fighters had a range problem. then there was Hitlers and Goerings constant meddling with the fighter arm (first holding back the Me262 then taking away precious interceptors accumulated by Galland for the "big strike")
QUOTE

you will know \"chivalry\" was not high on the Luftwaffe's task list.

well, unlike in the USAAF, in the luftwaffe, firing at parachuted pilots was frowned upon.
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Jeff_S
Posted: August 13, 2004 10:16 pm
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QUOTE
AFAIK the He 111 could carry a heavier bombload than the B17


I would be interested in a good reference for German WW2 aircraft. Web is best of course, but print would work too. I am sure Col. Denes could help (please?)



QUOTE
unescorted bombers are allways a problem (as the allies found out during the raid on Schweinfurt


I so agree with you there! Schweinfurt is probably the best example, but not the only one. I think the U.S. day bombing doctrine, as opposed to the RAF night bombing, only became workable because of the range of the P-51. And I'm not totally convinced, even with that. As for the arguments about "increased accuracy", it still seems to have been pretty bad. What is "less accurate"? Bombing Switzerland or Sweden by mistake?

QUOTE
then there was Hitlers and Goerings constant meddling with the fighter arm


I agree here too. You could add "meddling with fighter production" also. For example wasting resources on jets (especially bombers :o ) other than the Me262, rather than putting it in production as soon as possible and building as many as possible.

QUOTE
well, unlike in the USAAF, in the luftwaffe, firing at parachuted pilots was frowned upon


Could you point me to a believable source for this? I thought most air forces frowned on this, but that it really depended on the pilots. There can always be a gap between the theory and the reality.
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PanzerKing
Posted: August 13, 2004 10:18 pm
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Oh yes Maresal, the nasty Americans were the only ones that bombed populated cities...

Ever heard of Rotterdam, Belgrade, London etc? I believe the Germans used those tactics first.

Two wrongs don't make a right, but Germany was hardly innocent.
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dead-cat
Posted: August 13, 2004 10:44 pm
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QUOTE

Could you point me to a believable source for this? I thought most air forces frowned on this, but that it really depended on the pilots. There can always be a gap between the theory and the reality.


Raymond F. Toliver / Trevor J. Constable "Horrido!"(Fighter Aces of the Luftwaffe) Arthur Barker Ltd., London 1968 (i think. i read a german version reprint)

in chapter 3. (about Galland):
Galland refused Göring when the latter tried to find out if Galland might agree on issuing an order to shoot at parachuted pilots.

in the same chapter the authors single out the USAAF fighter branch for not embracing the same point of view.
also, an order is mentioned, to explicitely shoot at parachuted Me262 pilots.
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dragos
Posted: August 13, 2004 11:00 pm
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QUOTE
AFAIK the He 111 could carry a heavier bombload than the B17.


He111 bomb load: 4,400lb.

B-17 bomb load: 12,800lb (max).

Source: The Macmillan Dictionary of the Second World War
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