For six years, Bomber Command waged a strategic war over Germany at huge cost in terms of lives lost and aircraft shot down. The author, a former Phantom and Tornado navigator has written a well-researched book that captures the enormous bravery of RAF aircrew and the bitter battle fought nightly over Germany between bombers and night fighters. Most Highly Recommended.
NAME: Night Duel Over Germany, Bomber Command's Battle Over The Reich During WWII FILE: R2475 AUTHOR: Peter Jacobs PUBLISHER: Pen & Sword BINDING: hard back PAGES: 208 PRICE: £19.99 GENRE: Non Fiction SUBJECT: Air war, carpet bombing, night fighters, Bomber Command, WWII, World War 2, World War Two, Europe, blitz
IMAGE: B2475.jpg BUYNOW: http://tinyurl.com/m3q86ex LINKS: DESCRIPTION: For six years, Bomber Command waged a strategic war over Germany at huge cost in terms of lives lost and aircraft shot down. The author, a former Phantom and Tornado navigator has written a well-researched book that captures the enormous bravery of RAF aircrew and the bitter battle fought nightly over Germany between bombers and night fighters. Most Highly Recommended. The RAF fought a long war over Germany and for its early years lacked the necessary aircraft and equipment to fight the mission handed to its aircrews. From the start, casualties were very high and it took enormous courage to fly mission after mission, knowing that the chances of completing a tour were bleak. At the start, the RAF rapidly discovered that it could not survive on daylight raids to Germany and Occupied Europe. It had neither adequately armed bombers, not fighters able to escort bombers to the targets. The Germans were similarly unprepared to mount an adequate anti-bomber defence. As the war progressed, it was a constant battle with one side briefly coming out on top, before new technology returned advantage to the enemy. For the RAF, it had been formed primarily to wage a strategic bombing campaign against any emerging enemy, but a combination of poor senior leadership and money-pinching politicians had left it without the tools to fulfil its mission. Much of its experience between the two World Wars was spent using WWI aircraft to bomb tribal villages in the remoter reaches of Empire and Mandate. In 1939 it had a force of light and medium bombers, single and twin engine machines, that lacked adequate defensive armament and suffered a poor bomb load, with poor bombing aids. The best machine was the Wellington which was of unique construction and able to survive incredible damage. Even so, it lacked the bomb load necessary to wage strategic bombing at long range. Its saving graces were that its survivability made it loved by its crews, and its defensive armament of three power operated turrets, one of four guns and two of twin guns, augmented by two waist positions, each with a single gun. It was fortunate that the Germans initially lacked an effective radar-based command and control system and effective night fighters. Where the RAF had suffered from funding restrictions pre-war and poor senior commanders, Germans suffered because they never expected to be bombed by any enemy and devoted their resources to supporting the army in lightning war. It also depended on single and twin engine light and medium bombers with flimsy defensive armament and inadequate bomb load for a strategic bombing role, but ideal for army support in skies dominated by day fighters. German development of radar and command and control systems was behind British development and the Battle of Britain was an unpleasant surprise. The initial bombing raids on Germany was an even more unpleasant surprise even though the majority of the bombs dropped failed to hit their intended targets. The author has provided a vivid picture of this battle as fortunes ebbed and flowed for both sides as they strove to achieve air superiority in the skies over Germany. Inevitably, it mirrored the Battle of the Atlantic as U-boats and convoy escorts struggled against the sea and the tide of technological development. The U-boats also suffered appalling losses and were fighting essentially the same war as that waged over Germany by RAF Bomber Command. The U-boats had to cut the flow of supplies from North America and the Empire to Britain, and Bomber Command had to destroy the ability of the Germans to supply their military. Eventually the Allies won both battles because they were able to enhance their equipment and expand their capabilities at a faster rate than the Germans. That ability depended heavily on Bomber Command and the USAAF disrupting German war production and cutting their supplies of oil and raw materials.