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Allied strafing runs on Germany, 1945


Klaiber

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Hi Guys,

Thought you'd be interested in seeing this.  I heard about this through work (I work in a library).

 

 

This is a video of Allied strafing runs and air-to-air combat footage from 1945, which have recently been digitized by the National Archives:

 

http://research.archives.gov/description/13693

 

Most of the German fighters seem to be Bf 109Gs.  Probably a lot of G-6s and G-14s, with a few G-10 / Ks.

 
At 1:43, you get a great shot a Bf 109s camouflage and "low-visibility" markings.
 
And at 1:48, you can see a USAAF P-38 crossing underneath the gun-line of the attacking aircraft.  And a couple of seconds later, you can see the German Bf 109 pilot throws the canopy open and attempts to jump.
 
Amazingly enough, the gun camera footage even picks up a Me 163 Komet at 2:08.
 
And the aircraft at 2:25 and 2:27 may be a Ta 154.  Though I'm not sure.  Anyone have any guesses?
 
Later, there are some great shots of some German flying boats being attacked (starting around 2:57).
 
Enjoy!
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I looked at the video once again and I doubt it's Ta-154.

 

1) Ta-154 is high-wing plane. The one on that gun cam seems more like middle-wing plane.

2) There is something visible on the top of the fuselage like ventral gun position or something like this. That's something Ta-154 should not have.

 

Compare the rear view silhouette of Ta-154 with the one on the vid. 

 

TA154-V3-12.jpg

 

I would say it could be a variant of Ju-188 rather than Ta-154.

 

EDIT: Actually I would bet it's fighter version of Ju 188 or Ju 88 G-6. According to the picture below I bet it's Ju 88 G-6

 

Ju88-G6-NJG4-(3C+PN)-WrkN640643-Wunstorf

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That's what I thought originally too.  The hump, just aft of the nose, definitely looks like a Ju 88 style cockpit.

 

But looking at the nacelles of the aircraft in the video, you can see at 2:27 that they're tall and deep engines with a tapering point as they go aft.  The Ju 88 doesn't share that design.  It's nacelles are wide and they "suck in" as they move aft.

 

The other interesting aspect to the aircraft in the video is it's tail assembly.  It appears to taper back into a rounded point.  Whereas both the Ta 154 and the Ju 88 just end bluntly.

 

Based on the shape of the tail of the aircraft tin the video, I thought it could be from Arado... but no Arado that I know of matches this description.

 

Maybe it's not German?

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You're right. The end of the engine gondolas are different. More and more I incline my first idea of de Havilland Mosquito. It's the only plane I know with exactly the same triangular flat end of engine. If you compare it with this picture 

 

2002112802_3.jpg

 

it fits the shape of that plane quite well.

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The only Mosquito in LW service I know about is the B.IV version serving by 2./Versuchsverband OKL with T9+XB mark (in fact the same wore the captured P-38). But what I know this plane was in non-flying conditions and all three pictures of this aircraft I've ever seen show the plane without airscrews. More it wore very significant camouflage with bright yellow tail and undersurface.

 

Anyway even if there was any Mosquito in LW service in flight conditions it would be so highly improbably occasion. So I would believe we can see the friendly fire there. Of course in case it's really de Havilland Mosquito.

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Sort of looked Mosquito like to me too.  Also, look close at the one at the 2.00 mark.  Not sure if it is a 190 or a P-47.  Famous WWII photo of a kamikaze being shot down.  Big black explosion at the top and plane falling out with fuselage wrapped in flames.  Only problem is it is an F4F Wildcat.  OOPS!

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If you mean the one between 1:50 and 2:00 it's very probably the 109. Definitely it's not P-47, because three blade airscrew. The trailing edge of the wing seem straight too not relatively elliptical as it should be in P-47 case. 

 

About the friendly fire Mosquito. I read about many cases when RAF pilots attacked on the Bristol Blenheims identified as Ju-88 or even Do-17 during the Battle of Britain. It's sounds impossible form me, because these planes are of absolutely different shapes and more over they used big significant identifications. Additionally Blenheims were well known for most RAF pilots. The similar you can tell about the Typhoon/190 mismatching. Now compare it with USAF pilots from '44/'45 which have almost no chance to see planes like Mosquitos (just because they had not escorted/cooperated with that plane) IRL. Suddenly they met strange looking plane in middle of the enemy air, add to this the eagerness for kill, fear of death, and speed of aerial fight and the wrong identification is more than possible. Despite the national insignia which were less visible than during the early stage of war.

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The aircraft between 1:52 and 1:59 is definitely a Bf 109.  You can see the air intake on the left side of the cowling, and the right hinged canopy when it's opened.

 

The aircraft between 1:59 and 2:08 (ending in the explosion) may be what Vik is referring to.  It's hard to tell, as it's so small and blurry.  But if you pause it at 1:59, it looks like a Fw 190.

 

 

fw190.jpg

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It has to be a Mosquito.  Its the only aircraft that completely matches that profile including the engines, tail, cockpit, and where the wings attach to the fuselage.  The aircraft at 1:59 I would most definitely identify as a Fw-190 from the still provided by Klaiber.  

I've read many accounts of friendly fire encountered by Tempests from American pilots when the Tempest was first being rolled out.  And its not surprising that rookie real life fighter pilots in a real war would overlook war markings in the heat of a perceived life or death fight when so many experienced computer fighter jocks, including myself, have failed in this regard.  I just hope the fool didn't kill anybody on that plane.

On a side note, jeezus they get in close as hell to those flying boats!

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There is one strafing shot of an aircraft going after a train engine that gives me the chills.  It's the one where you can almost tell the species of tree he's flying over, because he's so stupidly close.

 

It's at 2:35 to 2:40.

 

Either way, I started searching for Friendly Fire incidents involving Mosquitos, and found this page:

 

http://www.ww2aircraft.net/forum/aviation/blue-blue-friendly-fire-incidents-36419.html

 

The filmed friendly fire incident involving the Mosquito was a 140 Sqn. craft, so would have been PRU blue. It was claimed as an Me 410 by two 4th FG P-51s.

 

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