Was not FW190 a better plane?Don't dismiss the 109. It was formidable, perhaps a bit challenging in some circumstances, but a fighter aeroplane that was developed and kept in production throughout the war, resulting in a total of 35,000 or more airframes - no other aeroplane has been produced that much, and it was never replaced by newer designs.
I watched a really interesting lecture about the myths of WW2. The speaker went into a bit of detail how the Generals were a lot more responsible for some of the hair brained decisions than Hitler was. He even gave some justification for Hitler's no retreat edicts on the Eastern Front.It was the German Army's logistical staff who were the most sceptical about the attack, but they backed down when confronted by the army planners and Nazi leadership.
The Fw 190 had a clear advantage over RAF fighters when first introduced but when the Spitfire Mk 9 became operational things evened up.Was not FW190 a better plane?
Can't say as I agree.That was a secondary effect, neither the US nor UK spent the manpower, lives, resources, industrial capacity, fuel, erc devoted all that to creating an Air Front to divert German old men, kids, and third rate officers to shoot them down. RAF Bomber Command lost 1/3 of its air crew personnel killed in action, the 8th AAF lost more bomber crew than Marines lost in the Pacific.
Both organizations, RAF and USAAC/F were claiming they were going to end the war themselves. Not contribute. Not help. Not assist. That they alone using Douhet and Mitchell and Trenchard doctrinal bombing to force Germany to surrender. In that they failed, utterly.
In contributing, helping, assisting they had success. In forcing Germany to divert forces, they had success. Worth the cost? I don't believe so, not when considering both countries neutered their ground forces and tactical air to fund and support strategic bombing, and those were the forces that actually strategically defeated Germany.
However the German intelligence on the size of strength of the Russian army was quite wrong. hey badly underestimated the reserves available to the Red Army.Most scholars agree it never had a realistic chance of success. Even the German planners warned not to invade and that they could only guarantee logistical support beyond about 450km to 500km
The German generals assured Hitler they could wing it and make it work for them.
On Miltilty History Visualtizsed youtubve channel the guy directly quotes he German Army field manual about logsitics, and German offical doctrine basically says it's up to the logistical officers to make sure logistics had no impact of oeprtaions. The Philosphiy of German army orgaizatioin and dcortien was the Logistics were totally subject to the demands of opertaional requirements, and planning could be done virtually without them, and it was up to the opertaional guys to make it work, and somehow support whatever the opertaional plan was.It was the German Army's logistical staff who were the most sceptical about the attack, but they backed down when confronted by the army planners and Nazi leadership.
It's simply not true to say that the CBO (Combined Bomber Offensive) had "ZERO effect". It had an enormous impact, both prewar and during the war. Four engine bombers were far more complex than a single seat fighter, or even a twin engine bomber. That complexity translated to logistical support and personnel as well. Bombers cost more and used more of everything. Other types could have been built in larger numbers instead.Can't say as I agree.
The bombing campaigns absolutely impacted German productivity and German morale.
They had ZERO effect on other allied air power expenditures as the US and Britain with US materiel support steadily increased aircraft production every single month thru the entire war.
Perhaps Germany would have built more ground attack planes instead, or transports, or instead devoted resources to other desperate needs. Funny thing about factories...it turns out that bombs blow out windows and knock over walls (if enough bombs managed to hit it at all), but the machines inside were rarely damaged. High explosives are a poor way of destroying steel machinery. It would require extensive raids over a period of time to destroy a factory, but of course obvious targets are obvious and thus well defended.Had the bombing campaigns NOT been done- then Germany would have had twice as many fighters on the front lines, making it that much harder for the Allies to maintain air supremacy.
Had they not devastated factories and urban centers- Germany would not have had to divert resources to repairing those factories and keeping the infrastructure in those cities operational.
Even in early 1943, only 17% of Bomber Command crews would make required 30 missions. Meanwhile, the 1941 Butt Report showed that only 20% of the bombers were dropping their bombs within 5 miles of the target. Horrific losses for meager results led Harris and Bomber Command to give up trying to hit specific targets and focus on burning cities through "area" bombing.And sure- we lost more aircrew than marines- but Its a little disingenuous to compare the marines who invaded enemy territory on less than a dozen occasions to the air arm that effectively invaded Germany 3 times a week for 4 years.
"Propensity for exaggerating" understates it. They refused to believe evidence to the contrary. Even in 1942, during the darkest days of the CBO, Harris was arguing that if he was given 4000 bombers, an invasion of the continent would be a formality. He truly believed that the war could be won by burning enough cities. While you are correct in noting that WW2 airpower was new, there was plenty of prewar evidence to cast doubt on the claims of bomber enthusiasts. They closed their minds to all of it. What could have been achieved had the respective air forces been more realistic in assessing the new technology?I do agree that the air forces of both allies had a propensity for exaggerating the potential for air forces alone to end the war... but then, air forces of this type were brand new and seemed radically devastating. It was WWII that pretty much proved that you can not "take" territory thru air power alone.
Coalition planes were unopposed. But no one doubts then or now that air power can be decisive. Whether or not a bombing campaign can be is a thornier question.And yet- it can not be argued that the air campaign that preceded the invasion of iraq did not materially accelerate the fall of Saddam's armed forces.
Air power HAS become materially more devastating in the modern era.
Well, yeah, but that could be said of anthrax or something as well. Not much of a victory, all things considered.And i have no doubt that, had the air forces had the nuclear bombs in 1942- they well could have won the war outright.
today- the limitation on the ability of air power, alone, to win conflicts is largely due to our ( thankful) reluctance to use nuclear bombs.
It had zero effect- the US was producing planes faster than the enemy could shoot them down, of every type. There was No shortage of fighters due to bomber production by Britain and the US. There was no point after the US entered the war that the Allies did not conduct a mission for lack of equipment.It's simply not true to say that the CBO (Combined Bomber Offensive) had "ZERO effect". It had an enormous impact, both prewar and during the war. Four engine bombers were far more complex than a single seat fighter, or even a twin engine bomber. That complexity translated to logistical support and personnel as well. Bombers cost more and used more of everything. Other types could have been built in larger numbers instead.
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