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Schweizer Schiffahrtsgeschichte des Jahrhunderts Schwere Jagdpanzer. Seaforth World Naval Review Shades of the Blue. US Naval Air Power since Ships of the World No. From Prime Mover to Truck Tractor. The Fall af Rabaul December March Southern Pacific Historic Diesels Vol. Air Arms, Equipment and Conflicts since Mythos und Wirklichkeit Special Ops Vol. Die Regensburger Flakhelfer Sperrfort Verle. Spiked Helmets of Imperial Germany Vol. A further strengthening of the effort came from the Joint Oil Targets Committee set up in London to supervise the oil campaign more scientifically.
One of its first decisions was to recommend intensification of attacks on gasoline production, thus giving highest priority to the synthetic oil plants and to crude oil refineries in Romania, Hungary, Poland, and Germany, in that order. IG Farben 's coal was converted to oil, in turn this was responsible for all of the Luftwaffe ' s aviation stocks.
Spaatz and Harris once again protested at the use of their services for tactical support, each with their own agendas and targets. Harris wanted to continue his policy of area bombing industrial cities, Spaatz wanted to attack the oil plants. Both believed their strategies would cripple the German war effort. Spaatz threatened to resign if at least one of the strategic bomber forces was not given over to a campaign against oil targets.
Moreover, he wanted to provoke the Luftwaffe in battle. Spaatz thought that attacking rail targets would not achieve this, but striking at petroleum would. Up until this point, only sporadic attacks had been made against oil targets. The OKL faced two major challenges at this juncture. The first was the reinforcing of Luftflotte 3 from Luftflotte Reich , to deal with the imminent Allied invasion of France.
The tactical situation offered a glimmer of hope. The Messerschmitt Me Komet rocket-powered interceptor fighter and the Messerschmitt Me jet fighter started to enter service in small numbers in mid, with the specialist rocket fighter wing named JG , and the Erprobungskommando test unit respectively, with the Jagdgruppe -sized Kommando Nowotny taking over the deployment of the after summer had ended. Like the twin-engine Ju 88s, Bf s and Me s, they would need escorting by Bf equipped units.
Other days brought dramatic defeats, and terrible casualties, but never without the possibility of a reversal of fortune". If they persist at it this time, then we will soon no longer have any fuel production worth mentioning". Following the ruinous attacks on oil in April—May , the Germans began to experiment with a new defensive measure, one which proved very satisfactory to them for some time.
Whenever their warning system indicated the approach of air fleets over Yugoslavia toward Romania, the Germans would use the 40 minutes available to them before the attack to light hundreds of smoke pots around the Ploesti fields, with the result that most of the area would be concealed by the time the bombers arrived. Thus precision attack was impossible. In an effort to overcome this obstacle, the 15AF dispatched on 10 June , not bombers, but P's, to drop 1,pound bombs at low-level while others gave cover.
At best this experiment was only an equivocal success. RAF Bomber Command played a more important role in the oil campaign than is usually recognised. The Luftwaffe was now in an impossible position. The oil industry had to be defended, but doing so was costly. However, during September the actual kill count of the RLV during September was shot down for losses. By October , serviceable aircraft amounted to just , excluding units on conversion training. The main refinery, in Romania, was virtually destroyed by the bombing.
The final raids made against Ploesti were made by 15AF on 19 August The remaining German fighter units retreated into Yugoslavia and Hungary. RAF Bomber Command struck at synthetic targets in the Ruhr districts until November , when the Combined Chiefs of Staff concluded that the oil plants had been reduced to the extent that further attacks were wasteful. Harris was ordered to cease attacks and shift to communications target.
The crippling of Germany's warning system in the west as a result of the Allied victory in France and the increased efficiency of blind-bombing techniques made such RAF missions possible, and they proved generally successful. Speer subsequently reported to Hitler that the night attacks were more effective than the daylight missions, because heavier bombs were used and greater accuracy had been attained.
All of the synthetic plants in western Germany, however, were reported out of action and the crude refineries around Hamburg, Bremen, and Vienna as functioning only on a small scale. In fact, the evidence indicated that only one sizable crude-oil refinery was operating in Germany.
After the war, Minister of Armaments Albert Speer was asked by both British and American interrogators on separate occasions which air force had a superior bombing strategy. The exact wording of the question was "Which, at various periods of the war, caused more concern; British or American heavy bomber attacks, day or night attacks, and why? In both cases, Speer replied: "The American attacks which followed a definite system assault on industrial targets, were by far the most dangerous. It was in fact those attacks which caused the breakdown of the German armaments industry.
That this didn't fully happen was largely thanks to Bomber Command's leader Sir Arthur Harris diverting planes from those tasks to his area bombing operations. The attacks were having a devastating effect on German fighter units. More and more Staffeln and Gruppen were pulled off the front line on the Eastern Front to reinforce the Reich. He ordered bomber pilots to be converted to fighter pilots. Pilot training was shortened to meet the need for pilots. In , the pilot programme had shrunk to eight months and flying hours; just 20 hours on the Fw and Bf German fighter pilot schools relied on fuel.
With this achieved, they claimed to be able to train 1, fighter, ground-attack, 40 bomber, 75 jet-bomber, 64 recce and 40 night fighter pilots a month. By the autumn, the Luftwaffe was seeking anyone who already had basic experience in flying, so they could bypass the primary stages of flight school.
In pre-war establishments, and up until the German training programs had proven better in terms of training time given to pilots than the Allies. However, German training time reduced through the war, while Allied training improved. This was perhaps the most important aspect in the decline of the Luftwaffe as an effective fighting force. Owing to this, new pilots with less skill than their predecessors were lost at a faster rate.
The increasing losses, in turn, forced the training establishments to produce pilots even more rapidly. Once this cycle began, it was difficult to escape. One of the key indicators in the decline of German fighter pilot skill after air battles was the rise of losses owing to non-combat causes. By the first half of losses sustained in accidents were as many as losses in combat.
The oil campaign was hugely successful. The effectiveness of Nachtjagdgeschwader units was deteriorating. In —, it had proved the most efficient branch of the Luftwaffe. Even as late as July , it was scoring successes. But in August, fuel shortages caused a curtailing of operations. From that date, the Nachtgeschwader failed to make a serious impact on the night offensive. The lack of fuel was one factor. Another was the Allied advance across western Europe which deprived the Germans of their early warning systems for detecting incoming raids.
Supplementing this were the countermeasures introduced by RAF Bomber Command, such as intruder operations in which Mosquito night fighters would attack German fighters as they took off from and returned to base. This compelled the Germans to restrict the use of airfield lighting and assembly beacons.
Owing to fuel shortages, training of night crews was not as thorough as before, while the demands of manpower throughout the Wehrmacht had brought about a decline in quality in the servicing and ground staff. Some of the fighter force had to be withdrawn to the Eastern Front to counter night attacks by the Soviet Red Air Force. Nevertheless, its strength increased: from to 1, between 1 July and 1 October , of which in July and in October were engaged in operations against RAF Bomber Command.
In late , the German defensive line now only extended from Denmark to Switzerland. This enabled British bombers to fly toward German territory without interception on the way. The German strength was thus reduced, with more aircraft diverted to reconnaissance over the North Sea in an attempt to pick up Allied bomber formations. In spite of the problems, the Luftwaffe night fighter force was stronger numerically than ever before. However, since the first half of , the outlook for the force had changed from increasing efficiency to a probability of declining effectiveness as the cumulative effect of poor training, shortage of fuel, diversion of effort and shortage of manpower became perceptible.
In the last year of the war, the bombing offensive "came of age". There were 50, heavy and light German anti-aircraft guns concentrated around essential industrial targets. There remained an "exiguous fighter force by day and night". In the winter of —, the German state was carved into isolated economic regions living off accumulated stocks while aircraft production was to be moved under ground into caves, salt mines and underground factories manned by slave labourers. Poor ventilation and high humidity damaged precision machinery and tools which made the quality of production poorer.
In salt mines, the walls absorbed the moisture and eased conditions. The effectiveness of attacks on rail and communications began in the autumn The Luftwaffe could not prevent the destruction of the city Kassel 's electricity supply ending Krupp Gusstahlfabrik Cast Steel Works contribution to the war on 23 October This type of direct attack was unable to stop production altogether. Attacks on communications came closest to achieving this goal. The Dortmund - Ems canal was drained by an attack in September Between 14 and 18 October, the rail shipments of coal from the Ruhr ended completely.
By early October , only one train in 50 was getting into the Ruhr in the first place. It was enough to bring near total collapse between November and January The statistics point to the gradual strangulation of the German transport system. The daily average of freight car tonnage dropped from , in June to 83, in December Waterborne movements of coke and coal from the Ruhr declined from a daily average of 76, tons in July to 14, by January Stocks of coal, the main source of power for German industry, rose from a low of , tons kept at the mineheads in July to 2,, tons in February The rise in tonnage demonstrates the collapse of the transport network, which meant raw materials could not be transported or moved effectively from the mineheads to the factories.
When began, the Allies were on the German borders, and in some places had captured German towns such as Aachen. With the territory under German control contracting and Germany's territory itself in the frontline, the distinction between tactical and strategic attack blurred. Allied air forces and the Luftwaffe found themselves providing support over the frontline while battling to attack or defend industrial targets.
Hitler attempted to improve Germany's continually worsening military position by launching operation Wacht am Rhein Battle of the Bulge. The RLV handed over some Jagdgeschwader to support the offensive along with the Luftwaffe ' s frontline fighter units. The cost was high, some pilots were killed or missing between 16—31 December The Luftwaffe committed over fighters to the operation. The Luftwaffe ' s senior staff had hoped that projects like the Me rocket fighter or Me jet fighter would be given priority as a bomber interceptor as early as However, problems with jet engine development and Hitler's insistence the Me be used as a strike aircraft , and problems with its engines, hampered its development and delaying its entry into the RLV.
German losses remained high due to the difference in fighter pilot training. On 7 April , for example, only 15 of Fw s and Bf s which were covered by a large force of Me s, returned to base from an interception sortie. In reality, only eight American bombers were shot down. During this period the Western Allied invasion of Germany had already begun. Airfields and bases that were located in western Germany were quickly overrun.
The Luftwaffe defended its airspace continually, but suffered heavy losses flying defensive and offensive sorties over the Allied bridgeheads that were established along the Rhine River. A few successes were scored, and some missions, including forces of up to 40—50 Me s were used, but the losses inflicted on the bombers were not decisive.
The Allied Air Forces had total air superiority and attacked the Luftwaffe on the ground and in the air. In just two days, 13—15 April German fighters were lost to Allied ground attack fighters. The intensifying campaign against German cities did not cease. Among the most controversial raids was the Bombing of Dresden in February The rationale of the raid was to aid the advance of the Red Army on the Eastern Front.
Dresden was a communications hub which, it was believed, was transporting German reinforcements eastward. It was also thought it harboured significant industries in and around the city. Its value as a military target was and still is questioned due to the city's apparent lack of industrial potential in its centres and the late stage of the war. Soon afterwards, Allied forces conducted Operation Clarion.
The operation sent thousands of bombers and fighters by day and night to target smaller cities and targets of opportunity. Attacks on other targets took place in March—April , while desperate measures by the Luftwaffe with units like the Sonderkommando Elbe aerial ramming unit and the debut of the Heinkel He Spatz light jet fighter by JG 1 took place against the Allies during the concluding months of the Allied air offensive, in addition to the efforts of the two Me equipped jet units, JG 7 and JV On 19 April, the Combined Chiefs of Staff issued a directive that stipulated all further operations by strategic air forces should be diverted to land-support duties.
It came into effect on 5 May. Bomber Command, by that time, with Operation Exodus , was busy supporting the Army by flying out Allied prisoners of war. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Main article: Operation Pointblank. Boog , pp. Figures are for and only. Boog gives the loss of "8, defensive aircraft" in and Hooton gives 3, day fighters and night fighters for Added are 2, day and night fighters lost in "Western Sorties" in Chapter: Luftwaffe Flak Arm.
Page All of these were potentially flyable and the numbers excluded wrecks and carcases which were immediately classified as scrap. Generally, the destruction technique involved blowing off the engines with captured explosives and reducing the remainder of the airframe to manageable proportions by the further use of explosives or heavy cutting gear. Page "Throughout , the flak lost an average of mm flak guns per month as a result of excessive wear or destruction, a rate of consumption twice that of and nine times greater than in Figures for June to December Figure given in footnote: Period October to July Spaatz and the Air War in Europe p.
The non-Luftwaffe personnel included , Home Guard, Labor Service, and male high school auxiliaries, , female auxiliaries, and 98, foreign volunteers and prisoners of war. Four years later, the size of the flak arm had increased to 2, heavy flak gun batteries, 1, light flak gun batteries, and searchlight batteries. Retrieved 22 January Rocket Fighter. New York: Random House. Atkinson, Rick The Guns At Last Light. New York: Henry Holt. Beaumont, Roger January Journal of Contemporary History.
Beevor, Antony The Second World War. New York: Back Bay Books. Biddle, Tami Princeton and Oxford University. Clarendon Press. Deutsche Verlags-Anstalt, Stuttgart. Bowman, Martin W. Harper Collins. Buckley, John Air Power in the Age of Total War. UCL Press. Caldwell, Donald L. Caldwell, Donald; Muller, Richard Greenhill books.
Cooper, Mathew New York: Jane's Publishing Incorporated. Cooper, Allan Air Battle of the Ruhr. London: Airlife Publishing Ltd. Cox and Gray, Sebastian and Peter Frank Cass. Cox, Sebastian Craven, Wesley; James Cate Office of Air Force History. Frankland, Noble Naval and Military Press.
Her Majesty's Stationery. Gerbig, Werner Schiffer Publishing Ltd. Hall, Cargill Case Studies In Strategic Bombardment. Air Force History and Museums Program. Hastings, Max RAF Bomber Command. Pan Books. Hess, William Motorbooks international. Hooton, E. Eagle in Flames: The Fall of the Luftwaffe. Jablonski, Edward Double strike: the epic air raids on Regensburg-Schweinfurt, August Kershaw, Ian Oxford University Press. Koch, H. W March The Historical Journal. MacIsaac, David New York: Garland.
Jagdwaffe vol Defending the Reich by Robert Forsyth - PDF Drive
Manrho, John; Putz, Ron Hikoki Publications. Murray, Williamson Strategy for Defeat: The Luftwaffe — National Archives. Da Capo Press. This volume also serves as a general study of German SS and Army divisional field artillery in general, and modelers and military historians will be entranced by the variety of weaponry on display. The book covers the unit's early war involvement in the invasion of France and occupation duties, before moving on to Operation Barbarossa, the invasion of Russia. Later in the war, the unit served in the Balkans, before finally fighting its way across northern Germany in the face of the ferocious Russian onslaught, and its final surrender to American forces at the Elbe.
The detailed text gives helpful background information about the unit, while captions yield a mine of information about the weapons, equipment and vehicles found in artillery and Flak units.