By John Manrho
Within the early morning of latest Year's Day 1945, because the final nice German offensive in Ardennes slowly smoldered to an finish and the Allies ready for a last 12 months of warfare in northwest Europe, opposed to all odds, the Luftwaffe -- assumed to be starved of gas and scuffling with spirit -- introduced an important, shock, low-level strike specific at Allied tactical airfields all through France, Belgium, and Holland. deliberate less than nice secrecy, the raid gambled on utilizing the majority of Luftwaffe fighter resources at the Western entrance, with the purpose of decimating major components of either the British 2d RAF and the USAAF at the flooring. because the iciness skies lightened, greater than 900 German plane -- such a lot of them Fw 190s and Bf 109s -- swept throughout susceptible and unsuspecting airfields, together with Brussels and Eindhoven. Altogether, greater than two hundred Allied plane have been destroyed, with one more one hundred fifty broken. yet for the Luftwaffe it was once a Pyrrhic victory; 271 combatants have been misplaced and plenty of extra broken. Worse nonetheless, of the 213 pilots misplaced, greater than 20 have been worthwhile formation leaders. utilizing 1000's of eye-witness debts and infrequent images, it is a definitive examine.
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Extra info for Bodenplatte: The Luftwaffe's Last Hope -The Attack on Allied Airfields, New Year's Day 1945
I joined 'Tadek Szlenkier and we ran together. While helping me fasten the straps in the cockpit my mechanic Ryszard turned his face and blew out. 'God, you smell like a distillery. ' He jumped down, grabbed an ox)~en bottle, climbed back on the wing and pushed the rubber tip if the hose in my mouth. ' he yelled, opening the valve. The shivering stopped. Vision sharpened. In afew minutes we were airborne. The sun was up, snow on the ground; the sky was light blue. Cold, smooth. Nobody around. The whole world was asleep exceptfor the 12 if us cursing and dozing.
1NAGr 1 had also taken pictures of St. Denis and reported 28 single-engined aircraft on fire. I"" Complete assessment of the' pictures was not possible due to the presence of smoke over the airfield. 1"9 Finally, the conclusion was that 28 single-engine and four four-engined aircraft were destroyed. ISO . These figures match the actual losses on St. DenisWestrem very accurately. Conclusion As a result of the attack by JG 1 some 54 aircraft were destroyed on the ground. In the battle betweenJG 1 and the Spitfires of No.
Am<:;rican airfields were given 'A','Y' or'B' prefixes. British airfields on the Continent were also numbered but with a 'B'prefix. 12311945. 1996. 1996 and interview between Willy Ade and Adrie Roding of unknown date. lhlefeld in the officer's mess. (K) Report No. 117D/1945. "Notes ofHptm. IjG 1 and logbooks of Lt. /jG 1. 15Im. 1996. 1996. (K) Report No. 123/1945. 27Wal" Diary Wilhelm Wichardt. 1996. lNjG Ii 1. 1997. 1 09/1945 indicate that perhaps up to 30 Bf1 09s participated. According to the logbooks ofLt.