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"Operating in pairs?" Topic


7 Posts

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World War One

511 hits since 7 Oct 2018
©1994-2019 Bill Armintrout
Comments or corrections?

mwindsorfw Supporting Member of TMP07 Oct 2018 9:44 a.m. PST

In WW2, there was an emphasis on operating in pairs (a wingman). Was there the same thinking in WW1, or was it "every man for himself" once the fighting started?

rmaker07 Oct 2018 10:43 a.m. PST

Pretty much every man for himself. No radios, so no easy means of cooperation.

Personal logo McLaddie Supporting Member of TMP07 Oct 2018 11:22 a.m. PST

Any tactics were 1. pre-planned and 2. follow the leader of the group, so pennants or plane colors were used for easy identification.

That's it. It would be fun to game pre-planned tactics in initiating an engagement or follow-the-leader behaviors, but that's it.

mwindsorfw Supporting Member of TMP07 Oct 2018 12:18 p.m. PST

Thanks guys.

Camcleod07 Oct 2018 6:53 p.m. PST

From 'Dicta Boelcke' on Wikipedia:

7. Foolish acts of bravery only bring death. The Jasta (squadron) must fight as a unit with close teamwork between all pilots. The signals of its leaders must be obeyed.

8. For the Staffel (squadron): Attack in principle in groups of four or six. When the fight breaks up into a series of single combats, take care that several do not go for one opponent.

Dexter Ward08 Oct 2018 3:34 a.m. PST

By late 1917 pilots operated in groups with wingmen protecting the leader. Signalling was done by waggling wings.

gfawcett09 Oct 2018 11:30 a.m. PST

Tactical pairs, Leader and one wingman, were developed by the Germans during the Spanish Civil War. The Brits still used a Leader and two wingman (Vic) in the early part of WWII.

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