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Battle of Britain pilots actually crap shots

Bergen

ADC
AfterSSE said:
Oops..apologies for deleting, didn't think you were that fast Karma, but as you C&P pretty good, it's still there for all intents and purposes..

I should probably have asked this before, but what do you mean by politically correct?

Too often lately, the society we live in today has leaned too far to the left in it's liberalisation and will find any excuse to apologise for past wrong doings even though it's done, it's history, like why do we feel a need to hit ourselves over the head for dropping two A bombs on the Japanese 50 plus years later...it happened and the times justified it, let it be written as so..yes a lot of people died..it's a war...

Is it really revisionist? Or are you just characterising it as such because you don't like the sentiment?

Honestly?...okay I don't like the sentiment...

You're previous couple of posts have indicated that conclusion, or perhaps that's not what you meant by suggesting that he shouldn't have published.

No I am not suggesting he shouldn't have published, my take on it, is what is being served by undertaking this in the first place, the fact he has done so is immaterial at this point, however I think my feelings were more along the lines of timing.

I think that you will find that during Battle of Britain operations the gun harmonisation for both the Spitfire and Hurricane were not optimised. Johny Johnson a Canadian who always flew a Spitfire marked with a green maple leaf used to set his guns up as follows:-

Johnson's next step was to have his initials painted on the fuselage to establish the aircraft as his own. Before he took the Spitfire into action Johnson demanded two more changes. EN398's guns were set to a standard harmonization pattern designed to spread the rounds evenly over a circle a few feet across so as to give the average pilot a better chance of scoring hits. However, Johnson's shooting skills were far above the average. To concentrate all the destructive power at his command he had his aircraft's weapons harmonized to a single point. In addition, Johnson had the Gyroscopic gun site removed and his older style one from his MkV installed in it's place as he preferred it.

This was in early 1943 so Johnson had a lot of lessons learned to work with.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Your remarks about dropping atomic weapons on Japan deserve a response; the Japanese were attempting to surrender for almost 6 months before Enola Gay took out Hiroshima. The USA did not want a Japanese surrender, they wanted to use the atomic bomb for various reasons including as a warning to Uncle Joe. However you slice it the first weapon may or may not have been justified but destroying Nagasaki was unwarranted. Do we need to continue hitting ourselves over the head for this??? Damn right we do especially with a clown in White House threatening unilateral pre-emptive nuclear strikes as his contribution to posterity.

RM
 

AfterSSE

War Hero
Bergen said:
Your remarks about dropping atomic weapons on Japan deserve a response; the Japanese were attempting to surrender for almost 6 months before Enola Gay took out Hiroshima. The USA did not want a Japanese surrender, they wanted to use the atomic bomb for various reasons including as a warning to Uncle Joe. However you slice it the first weapon may or may not have been justified but destroying Nagasaki was unwarranted. Do we need to continue hitting ourselves over the head for this??? Damn right we do especially with a clown in White House threatening unilateral pre-emptive nuclear strikes as his contribution to posterity.

RM

But that's only if you sincerely believe people learn from history, as can be seen after time after time, this isn't the case...as for hitting one's head over this, for constantly being reminded by the Japanese (and those who weren't there) who are not blameless in atrocities by the way, it starts to wear thin, as for Bush I agree, whatever lessons were learned, we should apply, but then I'm still waiting for pigs to fly...(not Pink Floyd's by the way) :thumright:
 
I honestly believe that a lot of them were crap shots, especially given the level of instruction and the equipment provided.
But, that would be judging by modern standards which doesn't seem at all fair.
Frankly if I was a Luftwaffe/RAF pilot in those days I'd have been a tad glad that the other bloke was a lousy shot!
I am sure the feeling would be mutual.
Our local airport at Shoreham (ESH) was obviously used for training in both world wars. How do I know? Because the nearest graveyard is full of military tombstones! Poor buggers.
Incidentally there is on the outskirts of Barcelona (Vilanova y la Geltru) in a rather tatty museum, an almost perfect Spitfire in Spanish air force livery.
 
AfterSSE said:
Bergen said:
Your remarks about dropping atomic weapons on Japan deserve a response; the Japanese were attempting to surrender for almost 6 months before Enola Gay took out Hiroshima. The USA did not want a Japanese surrender, they wanted to use the atomic bomb for various reasons including as a warning to Uncle Joe. However you slice it the first weapon may or may not have been justified but destroying Nagasaki was unwarranted. Do we need to continue hitting ourselves over the head for this??? Damn right we do especially with a clown in White House threatening unilateral pre-emptive nuclear strikes as his contribution to posterity.

RM

But that's only if you sincerely believe people learn from history, as can be seen after time after time, this isn't the case...as for hitting one's head over this, for constantly being reminded by the Japanese (and those who weren't there) who are not blameless in atrocities by the way, it starts to wear thin, as for Bush I agree, whatever lessons were learned, we should apply, but then I'm still waiting for pigs to fly...(not Pink Floyd's by the way) :thumright:

See my signature :wink:
 

chieftiff

War Hero
Moderator
I think the academic is merely stating what most of us already knew: Little training, little weapon platform stabilisation, a disorientating environment and inaccurate weapons shooting at targets which really don't want to be shot at or heaven forbid shoot back. I reckon he is stating the bloody obvious to be honest. You have to ask however why he chose to publish this self serving crap at this time of year................ call me cynical!

By the way, given all those factors would any of us want to leap in a crate and reach for the sky's? Brave doesn't even come close to describing the actions of WWII pilots.
 
Stating the bleedin obvious then CT!
I thought that's what it might be about, and agree about the timing.
Well spotted, but I don't think you get a cigar as it can't have been that hard.
 

Bergen

ADC
chieftiff said:
I think the academic is merely stating what most of us already knew: Little training, little weapon platform stabilisation, a disorientating environment and inaccurate weapons shooting at targets which really don't want to be shot at or heaven forbid shoot back. I reckon he is stating the bloody obvious to be honest. You have to ask however why he chose to publish this self serving crap at this time of year................ call me cynical!

By the way, given all those factors would any of us want to leap in a crate and reach for the sky's? Brave doesn't even come close to describing the actions of WWII pilots.


And if the Luftwaffe missed you then you still had to contend with the Home Guard :-

James Nicolson's
Victoria Cross



During the Battle of Britain many brave young pilots were to receive awards of distinction for their actions, but only one was to receive the Victoria Cross

On August 16th 1940, 23-year-old Flight Lieutenant James Nicolson of No. 249 Squadron was scrambled from Boscombe Down, Wiltshire, flying Hurricane P3576 of Red Section with Squadron Leader Eric King and Pilot Officer Martyn King

The pilots were to intercept and attack BF110's approaching Southampton from Gosport where a large raid was building up. The invaders had been sighted and Red Section dived towards the BF110's when, suddenly, a Staffel of BF109's jumped them from above. All three Hurricanes were hit


Squadron Leader King, the least badly damaged, broke off his attack and returned to Boscombe Down. Pilot Officer King abandoned his burning Hurricane and baled out

Four cannon shells hit Flight Lieutenant Nicolson's aircraft. One destroyed the perspex hood subsequently damaging his left eye and temporarily blinding him with blood. The reserve petrol tank was also struck along with his left leg. The Hurricane was now ablaze with the instrument panel melting, his hands blistering from the heat and his trousers on fire

Whilst preparing to bale out, a BF110 appeared in front of him. He slid back into his burning cockpit and continued flying the Hurricane after the enemy. Closing in, Nicolson opened fire and although the BF110 took evasive action to avoid the bullets, it was sent crashing into the sea

Finally baling out of his stricken aircraft, Nicolson had sustained severe burns to his hands, parts of his face, his eyelid was torn and his foot badly wounded. His ordeal however, was not quite over

While descending towards the ground some Local Defence Volunteers (LVD), under orders, opened fire with rifles at what they believed to be enemy parachutists. Pilot Officer King had his parachute badly damaged and plummeted to his death. Flight Lieutenant Nicolson, in great pain, landed alive with further wounds received from shotgun pellets

He was rushed to The Royal Southampton Hospital where he made a full recovery and returned to active duty during late 1941

His bravery and disregard for his own life in defence of his country earned him the Victoria Cross, which was awarded on 15th November 1940

May the actions of Flight Lieutenant James Nicolson and The Few never be forgotten



RM
 
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