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Wednesday, July 12, 2017


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  1. 2 points
    I appreciate your articles on British aircraft but you need to correct your terminology. There is no such thing as, The British Air Force, or, The British Royal Air Force, it is and always will be, the Royal Air Force. We were the first independent Air Force and do not carry any country in our title; thus we are the only one who doesn't need an identifier. That said, I appreciate that the quality and variety of you aviation related articles and photographs, so will continue to read with enjoyment. former Warrant Officer, Royal Air Force, (37 years service).
  2. 2 points
    What we now call PTSD has probably been around since the beginning of organized warfare. In American terms, during the Civil War it was called Soldier's Heart or Nostalgia. World War one it became Shell Shock, World War Two called it Combat Fatigue. For my generation at first it was called Post Vietnam Syndrome and then PTSD. As it was explained to me during my treatment, PTSD is a normal reaction to abnormal circumstances. Once I quit drinking, and I never took the drugs the VA offered, my head gradually cleared with the passage of time. Today I prefer to only associate with fellow veterans, as a member of AmVets, VFW, American Legion, and Vietnam Veterans of America. I do not have any "civilian" friends. By the way, the new "politically correct" designation is PTS. They no longer want to say we are disordered. As if we are flippin' snowflakes that might suffer damage at a word.
  3. 2 points
    Well, it's a little more complicated than that. But the count down for the war obviously begins in Moscow at the end of August 1939, where Ribbentrop and Molotov sign the Pact dividing Poland. Wehrmacht invades in a week, RKKA follows in over three weeks after the declaration of war against Hitler by UK and France. Poland is gobbled up; RKKA attacks Finland at the end of November. It does not go smoothly, but by March the Finns begin to wear down and in all probability Stalin stops short to avoid direct confrontation with western powers, while still being a de facto and de jure Hitler's ally - yet publicly complaining about the lack of fighting in "the phoney war". By mid-summer 1940, Wehrmacht defeats the French and the British on the continent, and Stalin invades Bessarabia and Bukovina (thus violating the Moscow Pact and advancing its tanks within a striking distance from Ploesti oil fields critical for Wehrmacht). Hitler abandons his plans to invade the British islands; RKKA General Staff begins drafting its "Considerations for Strategic Deployment Plan" against Wehrmacht (the first known version of this plan is dated September 1940). In November, Molotov flies to Berlin and annoys Hitler with territorial demands. Shortly after he leaves, Hitler issues Directive 21 (aka Plan Barbarossa) outlining the invasion of the USSR. For several days in December, RKKA General Staff conducts "war games" clearly aimed at Wehrmacht. Deployment race is on, with RKKA overwhelmingly superior in the number of assets, by the way. By all indications, Wehrmacht's invasion in June takes RKKA General Staff by surprise - not because of Stalin being delusional, as many in the western academia like to pontificate - but simply as a result of believing that Wehrmacht is behind in the deployment count. And why would they believe otherwise, when the "feared" panzer force contained less than 4 thousand tanks against over 10 thousand RKKA tanks in the theater? Now, whether or not the effect of the first strike was crucial, in just weeks, RKKA suffered from catastrophic loss of command and control.
  4. 2 points
    Gentlemen.... I think we may all have been guilty of "FEEDING THE TROLL".
  5. 2 points
    Good one. I honestly could not connect the dots at all.
  6. 2 points
    This question is not possible to answer because flight development was so rapid. You have to, as a minimum break it down into the war years, i.e. 1939 to 1945. Then you need to break it down between the war in Europe and North Africa and the Pacific. In each theather of war there were different "best" fighters. For every fight their was a plane. 1940 over the skies of Britain it was predominantly the Hawker Hurricane and the very few Spitfires, but the Messerscmidt 109 was a formidable plane too. This war produced some amazing fighters, and possibly the very best multirole fighter bombers of the time, the De Haviland Mosquito. Something not achieved again, unless somebody thinks the F35 is one...
  7. 2 points
    Please note that this map was made to illustrate the escort fighters for the 8th Air Force bombers thus the Mosquito (for instance) isn't on it.
  8. 2 points
    Dear Pieter, As a symbol (And a fine fighter aircraft), the Spitfire was THE airplane of the "Battle of Britain". It was, however, the less glamorous Hawker Hurricane that accounted for 60% of the German aircraft shot down during the engagement.
  9. 2 points
  10. 1 point
    The German U-Boat. The Deadliest Hunter Of The Sea -The Destroyer of Souls - Jay Hemmings for example, I started reading it and was stopped in my tracks by the assertion "and they were the first nation to use subs during that particular war". Rubbish. Britain was equipped with operational Submarines at the start of the war. Then I got to "In 1939, when the Second World War broke out, Germany had only managed to construct 57 U-boats, but these new U-boats were far sturdier and more technologically advanced than their WWI predecessors, featuring heat-seeking torpedoes, large gun decks, and spiderweb mines". I stopped reading at that point. There is just no room for these sorts of errors in a historical narrative and I'm afraid errors and ommissions of this magnitude make a nonsense of the whole article. To be fair to Mr. Hemmings, he is not the only one authoring articles with significant errors of fact in them and it detracts from the whole site when they are allowed to get past publishers.
  11. 1 point
    Thanks for the comment. Yes it probably somewhat sweeping but hardly an accusation. A comment on the "document" before me, yes. A statement on the commentators style and research, yes. Obviously, I follow the site but I tend to have a researchers outlook (engineering law), which fortunately my kids and grand kids follow, so the first answer to a issue/event/design or problem may not be the correct one and/or even free of extraneous thought which is why cross referencing is always recommended. Without going into a blow by blow pull down of the article a simple thought would be well kept in mind - there is a difference in planning and capability. They may have "planned" to use 12 nukes but did they have the capability? Or did the fire bombing of Tokyo in April really show the way for without the massive cash requirement of the nukes? It was certainly way more effective than the nukes in terms of bodies and buildings. Without wishing to be a smart-arse, the following is an interesting look at some of the extent of the "cost" of the nukes development:- https://www.citylab.com/design/2018/05/inside-the-secret-cities-that-created-the-atomic-bomb/559601/ Remember the site is semi-historical and some of the articles/comments are in fact quite enlightening.
  12. 1 point
    HITLER IN VIENNA 1906-1913 SITES My 2017 visit to Vienna and Austria included a number of historical sites and I want to share a detailed review of the sites, connected with Adolf Hitler and his so-called 1906-1913 ‘’Viennese period”. I have used a number of books about Vienna, biographies of Hitler, including Ian Kershaw’s and Briggite Hamann’s masterpieces to cover the exhaustedly detailed 6000-word article on Hitler early years and the story of these particular city sites. As always, you can count on me to find plenty of photos and Google maps with all markings. Hope, you will enjoy the material and inspire yourself to travel, read books and to give me feedback. Please leave comments, ask questions, suggest alterations, share with friends and those interested. https://war-documentary.info/adolf-hitler-in-vienna-1906-1913/
  13. 1 point
    Well, the Siege of Leningrad was predominantly a suffocating affair. Wehrmacht abandoned any meaningful attempts to take the city early on - in fact at the end of September, 1941, as I recall, all panzer divisions were redeployed to Moscow theater. So, the Finnish advance was very important in that it cut alternative supply routes to and from the city, which was a major production hub of heavy weapons in European part of Russia.
  14. 1 point
    In trials of the Owen, the operator went to the end of a mud-bog,thrust the gun deeply into the mud and held it there.Then he pulled it out,turned it over and submerged it again, ensuring that mud was pushed into all surfaces. The gun was then retrieved and, without cleaning or adjustment ,proceeded to fire perfectly. THe now empty magazine was then replaced and the weapon continued firing. "Almost unbelievable ,isn't it ?" said the newreel commentator. Because it was an Australian weapon,of course, few outsders have every heard of it. The Owen Machine-Carbine continued in use by the Australian army in Korea and the early years of the Vietnam conflict. (vide Arms of Destruction: Ranking the World's Best Land Weapons of WW2. Robert A Slayton, among other sources)
  15. 1 point
    I am certainly the last to claim knowledge on the subject, but your dagger appears to follow the pattern of the Fairbairn-Sykes "commando knife". As to its authenticity, I've not a clue.
  16. 1 point
    Hello Mr Leonard , I am a bit confused , I was told that there was a reply to my comment in which I pointed out the same lug nut as you did . Has someone deleted a post or some other thing I missed ? I have not taken offence or even a wall or gate or some other property boundary . Which reminds me , did you know that the long lost President Idi Amin , when asked what he was going to do about defence replied "De man comin' wid de hammer and nails to fix it"
  17. 1 point
    Whoa there big fella. Easy now. It is always best not to take offense unless and until it is well, truly, and pointedly offered. I was referring to the lug nut who wrote the headline for the article in "Army Times," above.
  18. 1 point
  19. 1 point
    The rationale of the Defiant was that it could fly faster then the typical bomber of the time, and could fly alongside and rake the (UNescorted) bomber from end to end with fire from the bank of 4 machine guns.Note the difficulty with which the Luftwaffe had in providing escort fighters even in the South Eastern corner of the UK: bomber raids on the East and the North would - of necessity - have been unescorted. The Germans didn't have any fighters that could reach (for example) Manchester.They likewise found Bristol a stretch. During the Battle of France (which immediately preceded the Battle of Britain) Defiants did pretty well. NOT just (as often claimed) by being mistaken for Hurricanes by BF109's which tried to dive on them from behind - right into the turret's kill zone) The first squadron to be kitted out with Defiants had the time to explore the best way to use them. Briefly, they held the record as the single most effective squadron in the RAF, mainly by blasting Ju87 Stukas out of the sky. A second squadron was established, but at a time when the initial squadron didn't have the opportunity to pass-on their knowledge or experiences, and at a time when the RAF was DESPERATE for fighters. They were badly misused. During the Battle of Britain, the Luftwaffe attempted to attack using bombers from a Luftflotte stationed in Holland and attacking - unescorted - across the North Sea. Perfect targets for the Defiants, but instead attacked by Hurricanes and Spitfires, because the mis-used Defiants had already been withdrawn from the fight. Hard to nominate the plane that held the record (however briefly) as "the most successful shooter-down of bombers" in the RAF as "The WORST plane of WW2". It was a GOOD plane, put to the wrong use in a time of crisis.
  20. 1 point
    Unfortunately for you, timeline does not support your theory. On May 10, 1940, when Wehrmacht invaded the Low Countries, Chamberlain was still the Prime Minister.
  21. 1 point
    After doing a little research I found the source article that this post was lifted from: https://www.armytimes.com/news/your-army/2018/06/25/world-war-ii-intelligence-officer-given-congressional-medal/ The author of your article took the liberty to add "of Honor" to the piece. Perhaps a little research by the editor would save this site some embarrassment. The article should be spiked.
  22. 1 point
    Not really. During the "Winter War" (1939-1940) the Finns used a variety of weapons and aircraft almost all sourced from non-German sources. During the "Continuation War"" (1941-1944) it's true that what armour there was and, later, the Me BF-109G were German.
  23. 1 point
    well you have missed / forgotten the secretly recorded discussion between Hitler and Mannerheim when Hitler was in Finland . he knew the Russian military was vast but the German intelligence had missed. and the operation barnarossa was a at the point not wanted operation but a necessary gamble. Molotov and tlstalin was putting massive pressure on Hitler to give them Bulgaria and it's oilfields cause Hitler had given support to Finland and broken the secret sections of the Molotov ribbentrop accord. it's an interesting listen if you are a military historian. take a note on Mannerheim reaction to when Hitler describes the Russian factory output. also Hitler had info that Stalin was planning to invade Germany himself but clustered by purging the officer corps
  24. 1 point
    Sorry for not being able to offer a citation, for this - it's the way my memory works: soaks up and retains information, but doesn't add a date-stamp! There was a British TV documentary presented by an historian whose thesis was that "to understand WW2, you MUST understand how Hitler's racial theories were substantially based on the British and their Empire, and he was frantic NOT to go to war with the people that he admired so greatly". The speaker even went as far as to suggest that the timing of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pakt, and then Barbarossa was set to stop the British from allying themselves with Russia. Britain had a HUGE Empire - especially India - and controlled it not by force of arms, but by sheer willpower; (born of racial superiority!) exactly as he wanted Germany to be able to do.His desired endgame was two massive empires existing side by side: the British Empire and the German Empire. Complete rubbish of course; As a Brit, I'm quietly proud of coming from such a mixture of racial mongrels, that are anything BUT "pure Germanic", any more than Mussolini's Italians were descended from Romans: with the fall of the Roman Empire in abiut 550AD, it was almost as if someone had flicked the switch on a blender in Europe. Ferocious tribes poured in from the East, displacing those who were there already (in Central Europe) who migrated either Westwards or South to save their own skins. Modern day Romans are quite likely to be descended from ancient Hungarians!
  25. 1 point
    My Grandfather was a merchant seaman during WW2, and returned on leave to see his family in Bristol. He got there during an air raid, and (unbeknown to him) a previous raid had caused the nearest public bomb shelter to flood.(A bomb had broken the watermain) He walked down the (unexpectedly wet) steps down to the (empty) shelter, slipped, and landed at the bottom of the steps - with a broken ankle. Which probably saved his life: his ship's next convoy was PQ-13 to Murmansk. Not many ships survived the trip.
  26. 1 point
    Hoo boy ,where do I begin: "an arms race only ever ends one way " No, it doesn't . Witness the era of the cold war, C1946-1991, Was there a conflict between WARPAC and NATO then ? (and you were a squadie, did you notice anything ?) You really should read more and get the sequence of events right. I'll simplify it. 1. Archduke Franz Ferdinand, heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne was murdered at Sarajevo. The Austrians believed that Serbia had inspired the whole thing and issued an ultimatum which they worded in such way that the demands could not be accepted. They attacked Serbia. 2. Germany,meanwhile ,issued the famous "Blank Cheque"' which guaranteed support to Austria in the event of war. (And you think Germany had "nothing to do with it".. Bloody Hell !!!! 3. Russia, as the Germans expected, were ready to support their fellow Slavs, and mobilized. Without waiting for developments, or Britain's offer of mediation, Germany immediately declared war on Russia. 4. But Russia was allied to France, (Dual Entente.later to be the Triple Entente) and Germany's war plans were to eliminate France first in the event of war. Their pre-planning included the implementation of the Schlieffen Plan which included the invasion of neutral Belgium- aggression caused by military convenience. Now in 1839, Britain- along with Prussia, please note- had promised to guarantee the integrity of Belgium. THe German invasion proceeded and Britain, after some deliberation declared war. (Don't tell me the Asquith Government wanted war !!) Germany withdrawing from Belgium ? Yeah-right! The place was to become a German "Protectorate" Have you heard what happened to Louvain ? Germany wanted peace ,you say. But what sort of peace would that have been ? Note the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk and you might get some idea. (And you think that the Versailles Treaty was punitive !) That's WW1 You should read Prof Fritz Fischer's writing, particularly his "Griff nach der Weltmacht"" That would destroy your "Weltanschauung". Your view of WW2 is so distorted as to be almost unrecognisable.
  27. 1 point
    Other issues of which I am unaware ? Very possibly. I don't pretend to be all-knowing. But Poland invading Germany:- you have to be joking ! Your claim of Poles murdering Germans is very much in the same vein as the Gleiwitz Incident , which , as you are probably aware (?) was the prime trigger for the German invasion. Who said anything about "World Domination" ? Sweden and Switzerland were,of course not part of Germany's historic Drive to the East (I've translated it for you) so why would they have been invaded ?
  28. 1 point
    Self-Determination ? Well, Lenin gave it lip-service certainly, but he didn't really believe it, being more concerned with uniting the Workers-of-the-World,than with enthnicity. Wilson originally thought it a good idea: his "fourteen points" was based on this premise. But when confronted with reality he had to back-down. In 1919,Wilson told Congress, "When I gave utterance to those words ('that all nations had the right of self-determination') I said that without the knowledge that nationalities existed,which are coming to us day after day". What Wilson had come to realise was that history had left central Europe with a rich mix of religions, languages and culture. About half the people (according to historian Margaret MacMillan) living there could be counted as belonging to one national minority or another. For example,there were German-speaking minorites scattered throughout Europe. The delegates at Versailles, did the best they could-in line with the original Wilsonian docrine- but there was no way that everybody could be satisfied. I don't know about the Poles "'slaughtering ethnic Germans in Danzig": I would have thought that the boot was very much on the other foot. Were there Polish Concentration Camps established on German territory then ? Why did Britain declare War following the invasion of Poland ? Because there had to be a line drawn in the sand somwhere. Certainly after Hitler repudiated the Munich Agreement and marched into Prague:- totally violating any notions about "self-determination".by the way,then war became sadly inevitable.
  29. 1 point
    So, you would be ok with Germany occupying the whole of Czechoslovakia and West Poland? I suppose, in your mind, Chamberlain made just one big mistake, and it was declaring war on Hitler.
  30. 1 point
    Oops, wrong war...sinking of the lusitania....lol
  31. 1 point
    while this is an interesting topic, I have to say that in my personal opinion there are a dozen reasons why the Nazis lost the war but too many guards at POW camps is not one of them. People often like to ask "what if" but my favorite is this; What would have happened if the Allies had confronted the Germans immediately after the invasion of Poland? People often like to say that the Allies "did nothing" but that's not actually true. Although they did not do enough and they certainly did nothing decisive, In the Saar Offensive (which never actually fully took place) the French moved 30 divisions to the border and across the border in some areas, occupying 12 towns and villages to a depth of about 8km. It's a part of history that is forgotten but it interests me to wonder what might have happened had that offensive been pressed in full strength, according to the initial plan. General Alfred Jodl later said that the only reason why the German military did not collapse in 1939 was that the British and French divisions were completely inactive. Another German general Siegfried Westpahl, said that had the French attacked in force in September (of 1939) the German army could only have "held out for one or two weeks". Now THAT is an interesting possibility! And if that HAD happened and the German's were defeated, what would the Russians have done??? Imagine that! A second world war but this one with the German's knocked out early and the Allies fighting to get the Russians out of Poland!
  32. 1 point
    I thought that the "First of Foot" was the Royal Scots, with a lineage so ancient that were nicknamed "Pontius Pilate's Bodyguard". THe Coldstreams, as the second Regiment of the Household Brigade, nevertheless have the motto "Second To None".
  33. 1 point
    Absolutely necessary, no question about it.
  34. 1 point
    The DH Mosquito is my choice. It had had a greater payload (4000lb) than the Mitchell (3000lb) and had excellent manoeuvrability and speed. Due to its variants and multitude of roles, the Mossie is also my choice for the best fighter in WWII. Possibly the best Allied plan of the conflict.
  35. 1 point
    Dont think it happened. Apparantly a Royal Navy Sea Fury did flown by a lieutenant Peter Carmichael...some say it was just a story....
  36. 1 point
    I recall reading, just a few weeks back, a spirited defence of the Bolton Paul Defiant, by a chap who claimed that you need to think of it not as an individual plane, but (when used correctly!) as part of a team. He claimed that only ONE squadron really understood the concept behind the Defiant, and took the trouble to learn to fly as teams. Think Flying Fortress "boxes", and you get the idea. Each pilot in the team keeps an eye on the other members. Attack one... and you're attacking them ALL. Apparently, it worked. But not sufficiently widely to be taken further by the RAF. But didn't American Naval fliers do something similar?
  37. 1 point
    Simple geography dictated from a British viewpoint who would be in charge at the start of WW2.Unlike Franc, the UK has no land border with Germany. If Britain was going to fight Hitler, we'd have to do so FROM France. It was the choice of the French command to sit behind the Maginot line. Not a stratagem wholly without merit: After their initial onslaught against France, Germany spent most of WW1 dug in behind impenetrable defences, and defied the Allies to extract them.
  38. 1 point
    Some very interesting points brought up here by many people. Oftentimes people tend to overestimate what kind of capabilities the German military had at the start of and during the early part of the war. The basic debate that evolved here was essentially, 'could the German's really have invaded the U.K at all?'. Some have very astutely pointed out that they lacked many of the assets needed for a cross channel invasion of the scale that would have been necessary, and that is very true. But in my opinion, it could easily be argued that the German military NEVER had the capabilities required to wage the kind of war that Hitler forced upon them. Hitler's early successes were in hindsight, quite fortunate and again, it could easily be argued that virtually everything he did after the Munich Agreement was foolish. Even if one doesn't buy into that, certainly once he invaded Russia it was merely a matter of time before utter defeat came to Germany.
  39. 1 point
    I'm reading The Forgotten Soldier by Guy Sajer. 2nd time I've read it, 1st time 20 years ago. Reason I'm reading it again is I've recently returned from a tour round Eastern Europe.
  40. 1 point
    MY ALLTIME FAVOURITE MUSEUM DUXFORD battle of Brittan air show 2017 BEST DAY EVERdad's armybest line up ever the American hall
  41. 1 point
    Technically speaking without doubt ME-262, Allied planes could intercept it by landing only; Anyway this question is difficult to answer, during different period of time we have different situations. At the beginning of the war is to be noted in Pacific Theatre clear supremacy of Mitsubishi A6M Zero, while in Europe was fight between ME-109 and Spitfire very tight, both plans had advantages and disadvantages, with appearance of FW-190 was situation a little bit different, FW-190 showed exceptional manoeuvrability, better than both planes, but was a bit slower and less sturdy than ME-109 (generally speaking).The fire power was on the German side, it was practically the same on FW-190 and ME-109. Russian started to build reliable fighter planes by the end of the war, only Jak-3 was competitive with Nazi and Allied planes. I would like to point out that we are talking about fighter planes, some votes went to DH 98 Mosquito which was "fast bomber" it's role as a fighter plane was limited to night operations.
  42. 1 point
    The Suez action had many ramifications. Chiefly perhaps, was the lasting rift caused by the USA administration's quite hostile reaction to the Anglo-French action. The support that one might have expected from an ally was certainly not forthcoming. It certainly reverberated internationally and was just one reason why Britain was not sucked into the Vietnam conflict some five years later despite US requests. Now there was a conflict that was "ünprovoked and unnecessary".
  43. 1 point
    Two U.S. Air Force A-10C Thunderbolt IIs, a P-38 Lightning and a P-47 Thunderbolt fly in formation during the 2017 Heritage Flight Training.
  44. 1 point
    The Avro Vulcan - a raity, in that you don't find many supersonic strategic bombers with aerobatic capabilities! Dating back to a time when the UK led the world in Jet design.
  45. 1 point
    The Nazis lost WW2 because Hitler, (a bloody incompetent corporal), insisted on detailing the specifics of campaigns. While the plans laid down by Wehrmacht's general staff won them France Hitler insisted on letting the British expeditionary force escape when he let Göring take the lead in bombing them. Not only did they botch the plans Luftwaffe had for reducing British defenses when they reordered to bomb cities as petty revenge, but they insisted on a two front war with operation Barbarrossa, nay, a three front war when they went to the aid of Mussolini before Barbarossa. Then there were the grandiose schemes. Building giant guns and giant tanks. While at the same time Hitler stopped the production of assault rifles and jeg fighters. Last but not least, spending logistical resources on cruel and cowardly genocide against civilians. I repeat: Hitler lost the war all by himself.
  46. 1 point
    Rather simple; electing Hitler in 1932 was Germany's biggest mistake. All that followed, the fighting that is, is a result of his megalomania, dumb luck (initially) and almost complete incompetence as a "military" commander. Oh yes, torturing and killing those of Jewish descent along with anyone else in opposition didn't help the "cause" either.
  47. 1 point
    None of the above. Only one plane sank ships, bombed buildings, shot down planes at night etc. etc. The De Havilland Mosquito.
  48. 1 point
    Department of Homeland Security?? Interesting since they do not own or operate Davis Monthan. Why would they be involved in the future of an Air Force base or of the aircraft stored there?
  49. 1 point
    Spitfire, without it the Battle of Britain would have been lost.
  50. 1 point
    The T-34 got my vote based on its impact on the Eastern front, where (arguably), armor played a more significant role. It stood up well against Panzer III's and IV's leading to the up-gunning of the IV. T-34s were less sophisticated than M4s, but they did their job well when they were needed. The M4 is a close second for their reliability (ease of maintenance) and effectiveness in the medium tank role. The Tiger(s) were monsters. However, I'd opt for the later Panzer IV or Panther as being more impactful in a war of attrition. Fun topic!

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