Bomber offensive vs. Gemany: you are in charge

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by tomo pauk, Mar 2, 2012.

  1. tomo pauk

    tomo pauk Creator of Interesting Threads

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    For quite some time, the the bomb raids were the only instrument available for Allies to bring the war to Germany. However, those raids whole Combined bomber offensive is criticized sometimes. So how would you conduct it, both during day night, with equipment historically available?
     
  2. HubertCumberdale

    HubertCumberdale New Member

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    Put far more resources into precise strikes at essential infrastructure using mosquitoes a al 2nd TAF.

    Electricity and fuel would be good places to hit.

    Once I have H2S/Oboe/Gee/Window etc. I'd equip every 4 engine heavy with it and use them to do them same. At night.

    Once I have Merlin Mustangs - just what they did do.
     
  3. wuzak

    wuzak Well-Known Member

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    Definitely concentrate on more Mosquitos to give precision attacks. Use Lanc for the odd attack against targets that require heavy bombs - like the dams raid.

    Try to get the USAAF to follow the lead and use Mossies - if enough available. Change the mix of B, PR, NF and FB versions to help get teh bomber numbers up.

    Attack oil and the transport system.

    Develop a successor to the Mosquito. Either the Super Mosquito with twin Sabres, or the Hawker P.1005 high speed bomber, also with Sabres. Look for alternative engines - V-3420 possibly.
     
  4. tomo pauk

    tomo pauk Creator of Interesting Threads

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    Was it feasible for RAF to successfully attack POL targets, electricity infrastructure, transportation system in 1941-43?
    What would USAAF be doing between late 1942 - late 1943?
     
  5. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

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    Amen.

    RAF Bomber Command and the U.S. Army Air Corps expended huge quantities of resources that did nothing except crater fields. Improving bomber accuracy should be solved early on. If solution(s) cannot be found then it's pointless for Britain to spend 12.19% of their military budget on RAF Bomber Command.

    Dare I suggest RAF Bomber Command consider dive bombing as a quick means to achieve a ten fold increase in weapons delivery accuracy?
     
  6. stona

    stona Well-Known Member

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    If I was Harris with the tools he had available to him at the time I'd pretty much do the same thing at least up until early 1944.
    Steve
     
  7. Readie

    Readie Well-Known Member

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    I agree, flatten the lot and continue to wage 'total war' till the Axis powers surrendered.
    Its the only way. 'Do unto others before they do unto you'
    John
     
  8. pbfoot

    pbfoot Active Member

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    IMHO Harris was aptly named the Butcher who harkens memories of Haig , why didn't he follow the plans laid out pre war for attacking POL , the dummy couldn't or better yet would not transfer any 4 engine aircraft (long range) to protect convoys even though the UK was under severe pressure from U boats . It was the USAAF that took the bull by the horns and attacked the POL and Harris was dragged unwillinly along as a result of direct orders which he did his best to circumvent
     
  9. stona

    stona Well-Known Member

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    He was not named "The Butcher" he was nick named "Butch" something quite different. Popular history and real history may differ but the names don't.

    I think it is fair to say that the performance of Haig has been reappraised more rationally as that war passes from living memory.

    Harris didn't attack the targets laid out in pre-war strategies because it quickly became evident that Bomber Command couldn't find let alone hit such targets even by day. When daylight bombing was quickly seen to be impossible they had even less chance of hitting them by night. Even later in the war there were cases of bombers attacking cities dozens of kilometres from the intended target. A substantial number attacked Schweinfurt instead of Nuremberg on the night of that famous raid. If they couldn't find and bomb the correct city what chance did they have of hitting a petro chemical plant?

    This was the basis for area bombing which the RAF,particularly in the right conditions,became very good at. That's why I would have done the same thing. With the tools available it was the only way of carrying the fight to Germany. I will not apologise for the tactics of Bomber Command. At least we are finally to have a fitting memorial to the men of Bomber Command in Green Park.

    Harris did what service chiefs do and fought to get the aircraft he thought he needed for his service. He obviously argued persuasively.During the Battle of the Atlantic I wonder just how the extra aircraft would have found these U-Boats with the technology available. The battle was in any case won without them which at least justifies Harris' stance even if I have some reservations with the aid of hindsight.

    The attacks you mention (the USAAF taking the bull by the horns) are presumaby the late war efforts after the USAAF had learnt its own hard lessons.
    Harris still didn't believe,even by 1944/5,that Bomber Command could hit such targets accurately,even by day. In this he was shown to be mistaken. When he did finally unleash Bomber Command on targets in support of Overlord it was very effective indeed. Five years of development in technology and tactics paid off. The targets were also geographically close.

    Cheers
    Steve
     
  10. tomo pauk

    tomo pauk Creator of Interesting Threads

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    The know-how of pin-point attack was present in the UK as early as 1940, and it was conducted with success.
    As for 'battle was won anyway' argument, there was always victories and victories.
     
  11. pbfoot

    pbfoot Active Member

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    #11 pbfoot, Mar 2, 2012
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2012
    I'm sorry I disagree the Bomber Command offensive was the Paschendaele of the air no other words, stubborn old men with no clue squandering lives. Its not right to muddle on with peoples lives.
    "Harris insisted that patolling the sea lanes was a complete waste of time and effort .Citing the records of 502 sqn flying Whitley bombers over a 6 month period he pointed out that on 144 sorties only 6 subs had been spotted 4 had been attacked and 1 possibly 2 sunk .Harris could not resist the observation that this meant 250 flying hours per sighting . in his note to Portal he scoffed at the Admiralty and the ineffectiveness this proved. Portal was able to prevent any of the new Halifax bombers from going to Coastal Command"
    Just muddling on .
     
  12. Readie

    Readie Well-Known Member

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    Yes and No. We had the 'area bombing' experience during the Blitz. The bigger the bomber and the more bombers you have to greater the blunt blows you can deliver. How many Colognes / Dresdens could the Nazi's taken before admitting defeat?
    John
     
  13. Readie

    Readie Well-Known Member

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    Do you also include the USAAF bomber offensive in your post?
    Its fashionable to deride Harris and the bomber offensive, I'm not sure quite why but, there you have it.
    John
     
  14. pbfoot

    pbfoot Active Member

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    #14 pbfoot, Mar 2, 2012
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2012
    apparently more then Harris thought they would,
     
  15. tomo pauk

    tomo pauk Creator of Interesting Threads

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    Sorry for not making myself 100% clear. When I say that know-how for pin-point night attacks was present in the UK, it's a part of UK's armed forces that I'm pointing into. Namely, FAA was able to deliver a devastating blow to Italian navy by making a night strike.
    On the other hand, that idea that BC/RAF would adopt some trick from FAA stands a snowball-in-hell chance.

    pbfoot addressed the Cologne/Dresden question.
     
  16. stona

    stona Well-Known Member

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    When and where?
    I don't mean low penetration attacks in daylight by specialised units on buildings in Denmark or France flying Mosquitos.I don't mean specialised attacks like "Chastise" on the Ruhr dams,no force could take that kind of loss for such a meagre return on a regular basis.
    I mean attacks that could carry the war to Germany and disrupt their production. I don't care if this is done by destroying the factories or dehousing and killing the work force and their families. I'm fighting a war for the survival of my nation and if that means I have to kill every living German I'll try to do it.

    The toll on the men of bomber command and their USAAF colleagues was high. You can't single out Harris for your vitriol,US commanders accepted high casualities too. They believed then and I believe now that they made a valuable contribution to winning the war. Of course mistakes were made but fighting a war costs lives. In Bomber Command it cost some of the best.

    Cheers
    Steve
     
  17. pbfoot

    pbfoot Active Member

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    Not that they were they were anymore accurate with their precision area bombing they did go after the POL which was a RAF objective since day one but neglected by Harris . Harris/Haig are of the same mold muddle on .
     
  18. stona

    stona Well-Known Member

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    #18 stona, Mar 2, 2012
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2012
    A few old bi-planes attacking a fleet at anchor,sinking a battleship and damaging a couple more and a heavy cruiser is not particularly relevant when trying to navigate hundreds of miles accross hostile air space and deliver a significant blow to a nations military-industrial complex.

    What on earth makes you think that the RAF would be reluctant to learn from the FAA and vice-versa. Not that the RAF had much use for torpedo bombing in its war against German production. They traded pilots and other personnel on a regular basis.

    Cheers
    Steve
     
  19. Readie

    Readie Well-Known Member

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    They is the initial resistance I suppose but, eventually the bomber offensive would have ground the Nazi's down.
    No country could withstand the 24/7 incendiary firestorms and Harris knew that could win the war.
    Hitler could hide in his bunker while Germany burnt.
    Rather like Nero !

    There are unsavoury aspects to total war but, we should get blindsided by the hand wringers. Harris did what he felt he needed to do and should be a hero.

    John
     
  20. stona

    stona Well-Known Member

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    So they cratered fields whilst we cratered German cities.

    Steve
     
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