Battle of Britain pilots actually crap shots

Random

Lantern Swinger
---------
Copied from The register
---------

A historian has claimed Fighter Command's finest - "The Few" who legendarily administered Goering's Luftwaffe a bloody nose during the Battle of Britain - were actually often woefully undertrained and incapable of hitting a barn door with a banjo.

That's the opinion of Dr Andrew Cumming, who analysed National Archive documents detailing the "kill/loss ratio" for the critical period of 24 August to 6 September 1940, and found the figures "unimpressive". He further claims the RAF's performance against the enemy during late 1940 was "ineffectual", and that Britain owes "far more to the Royal Navy and the Merchant Navy than we are prepared to acknowledge".

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2007/10/30/battle_of_britain_claim/

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2007/10/30/npilots130.xml
 
Yet another 'expert' (or should that be ExSpurt.. ?) expounding on something that he probably never experienced.

I bet the Luftwaffe survivors may just have a different view.. ??

:?:
 

penrecon

Lantern Swinger
Well they must have done something to make Hitler decide that the Luftwaffe could not win air superiority and cancel the plans for invading Britain!
 

AfterSSE

War Hero
Revisionist Historians make me puke... :pukel:
Rant-On.gif

During the Battle of Britain these guy's were all crack shots, how can I tell, because they shot down enemy planes, the German Airforce didn't just fall out of the sky ffs...

Bet he took a count of bullets/shells expended, fired them into a computer simulator and voila, for the per shell and downed aircraft ratio, we stunk...get a fecking life....

We just went through a similar episode over here at the War Museum, so called experts wanted some of the displays for the bombers (during the bombing campaign against Germany) to read, basically that we were murderers, until the Veterans stepped in and created a fuss, and they had to tone it down..

Pretty soon Revisionist Historians will have it that we actually started the war and that we are the ones who killed over 6 million Jews and were mostly responsible for Stalin killing millions of his own people, oh and we raped Nanking not the Japanese, let's see what else can we quietly take the blame for.....
Rant-Off.gif
 

Seaweed

RIP
Book Reviewer
1. We were able to recycle downed pilots and crashed aircraft which helped.

2. Crabs were helped by FAA pilots.

3. If Goering had not called off the attacks on the RAF and radar stations and gone for London instead ... then what?

4. None of this should detract from the courage of the young men who went up several times a day, properly trained or not.
 

RoofRat

War Hero
Some of these poor lads only had 7 or 8 hours on A/c type before being pitched into battle. When I was learning to fly, after 8 hours I could just about keep the thing in the air straight and level, and no b/stard was shooting at me!
C/mon give em a break Prof. Cummings.
RoofRat
 

McHammock

Lantern Swinger
AfterSSE said:
Revisionist Historians make me puke... :pukel:
Rant-On.gif

During the Battle of Britain these guy's were all crack shots, how can I tell, because they shot down enemy planes, the German Airforce didn't just fall out of the sky ffs...

Bet he took a count of bullets/shells expended, fired them into a computer simulator and voila, for the per shell and downed aircraft ratio, we stunk...get a fecking life....

We just went through a similar episode over here at the War Museum, so called experts wanted some of the displays for the bombers (during the bombing campaign against Germany) to read, basically that we were murderers, until the Veterans stepped in and created a fuss, and they had to tone it down..

Pretty soon Revisionist Historians will have it that we actually started the war and that we are the ones who killed over 6 million Jews and were mostly responsible for Stalin killing millions of his own people, oh and we raped Nanking not the Japanese, let's see what else can we quietly take the blame for.....
Rant-Off.gif

Calm down, calm down. Doesn't sound like too much revisionism to me.
Quote from Register article
"Dr Cumming told the Telegraph: "Whenever anybody criticises the RAF it seems to be taken as a slight against the pilots themselves, which of course is ridiculous. But for some reason - national identity - we are very proud of the original story and people can't tolerate any revisionism. That many could not shoot straight is a pretty important allegation. However, the evidence is that there was a lack of facilities, including not enough aircraft to tow practice targets."

To support his case, Cumming added: "Serious historians recognise that a lot of German bombers that were brought down were stragglers. This inadvertently exaggerated the British kill statistics. Five or six would have a go at the aircraft and then all claim a half-kill."

I think any semi serious look into real, rather than mythical BoB history would have to agree that a lot of young, inexperienced pilots were involved. That most of them would have been pretty crap shots due to their inexperience is a no brainer.

The problem is that you'r not allowed to question the myths that grow up around great military acts without being attacked.

Was there not a huge furore from the Crabs last year when another historian claimed that is was the threat from the RN more than the inability to gain superiority over the RAF that scuppered operation Sealion?
 

AfterSSE

War Hero
Dr Cumming told the Telegraph: "Whenever anybody criticises the RAF it seems to be taken as a slight against the pilots themselves, which of course is ridiculous. But for some reason - national identity - we are very proud of the original story and people can't tolerate any revisionism. That many could not shoot straight is a pretty important allegation. However, the evidence is that there was a lack of facilities, including not enough aircraft to tow practice targets."

And what's wrong with thinking those pilots were all aces, they did the job, so now because someone with letters exposes it to cold hard facts, that's it these guy's were just a lucky bunch of pilots...sometimes the myth is better then the truth...why pick it apart?

Deep down I'm sure most of us in the military understand that the majority of these young inexperienced pilots were probably not like Michael Caine and were shitting bricks each time they went up, but is that better in the telling then the alternative...civilians wouldn't understand either, but now they will think oh yeah, kinda knew they couldn't have been that good...just plain lucky...yep down another notch in the public eye.. :thumright:
 

Saxon

Badgeman
I think that sometimes, unless you create mythicality(is that a word) around, for example, ww2 pilots, people tend to very quickly forget them.

Besides, who cares anyway, aces or not they got the job done, and thats all that matters.

S
 
Ex_POAEA(R) said:
I am not doubting the results but what value is there to anything by Dr Andrew Cumming doing this research? What difference does it make?

As he was researching the National Archives I suppose we should take it that he was being paid by us the taxpayer to come up with this drivel ?
 
Top