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"The Eighth Air Force vs. The Luftwaffe" Topic


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Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP25 Aug 2022 8:18 p.m. PST

"The United States Eighth Air Force deployed to England with a daunting mission: destroy Germany's ability to wage war, and gain command of the European skies to pave the way for an Allied land invasion. In order to accomplish it, thousands of American airmen had to face the constant threat of death daily.

German anti-aircraft fire, or flak, was one of those deadly threats. Some targets were more heavily defended by flak batteries than others, but flak was an accepted part of the job at hand, no matter how deadly.

The other more feared threat was the German Luftwaffe. In 1943, the Luftwaffe was at peak strength against American bombers. The pilots flying the ME-109s and FW-190s were professionals—the best in the world. Some of the German pilots had been flying in combat since 1936. Many had dozens of aerial victories; some had over 100. John Keema of the 390th Bomb Group said, "No matter the target they were defending, they were balls to the wall. They were brave. They didn't hesitate."…"


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