Are the Luftwaffe claims credible?

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marcdecosterd
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Are the Luftwaffe claims credible?

Post by marcdecosterd » 27 Aug 2004 14:51

Were the mölders victories or galland's victories realistic?
Last edited by Marcus on 17 Feb 2014 10:54, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Title changed from "victories credibility"

mars
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Post by mars » 27 Aug 2004 15:27

galland submitted about 110+ victories claims, 90+ were approved, plust those shot down at the last stage of the war when the Luftwaffe's victories confirm system were broken down, he was credited with 104 victories, among them about 70+ could be confirmed by ally's losses

Hop
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Post by Hop » 27 Aug 2004 18:35

You can find many of the Luftwaffe claims lists at http://tonywood.cjb.net/

The one covering the Battle of Britain shows the Luftwaffe fighters claimed around 2000 single engined fighters during the BoB. The RAF lost around 900 to all causes on operations, including accidents, bombers defensive fire etc.

In other words, that list details approx 3 "claims" for every real one achieved.

There's some dispute over whether this list details claims, or confirmed kills. However, Galland made 100 "claims" during this period, 5 of which seem to be denied, yet he is usually credited with 97 kills up to the end of 1941. In other words, he's credited with every unresolved claim on this list, as well as a couple that were actually denied.

Molders made 69 claims in the period of this list, only 1 of which was denied, if you accept that Molders had 115 kills, 101 of them during WW2.

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Charlemagne1943
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Post by Charlemagne1943 » 02 Sep 2004 00:55

Target Englandby Derek Wood lists 1140 fighters lost (Catagory 3=total loss) and 710 severely damaged (Catagory 2=repairable by contractor or contractor) by the RAF July 1 to Oct 31 1940. Due to the nature of the fighting over England, the Luftwaffe High Command made an exception to the general rules regarding confirmation of kills. A German fighter pilot who tried to witness his victim crashing would have ended up as a victim himself. This exception did lead to overclaiming. It must be remembered that a Spitfire or Hurricane which crash-landed in an open field could be recovered and repaired and thus was not a total loss but it would be claimed and awarded as a kill. The same situation confronted RAF and USAAF pilots claiming kills over continental Europe. German fighter pilot claims were much more accurate later. On 22 June 1941 German claims against the Russian Air Force numbered 322 aerial kills against Soviet admissions of 336 lost in air combat. The Dieppe raid of 19 August 1942 saw 112 claims by JG 2 and JG 26 against a total loss of 106 by the RAF.

It must also be remembered that experienced fighter pilots such as Mölders and Galland would not mistake a lightly damaged aircraft from a severly damaged aircraft which would result in its destruction. An inexperienced pilot might claim destruction based upon reflections on the surface or canopy of his opponent or might believe an aircraft to be trailing smoke when it actually was using full throttle.

mars
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Post by mars » 02 Sep 2004 03:48

Charlemagne1943, I wonder what is Herr Edmund L. Blandford's source about the British losses in battle of Britian, however according to British's official record, Fighter command lost 1023 aircrafts, Bomber command lost 376 and Coast commands lost 148 for all causes, it was general belived Luftwaffe overclaimed about 3 to 1 in battle of France and Battle of Britian, and it may make you feel better, RAF and later USAF overclaimed at least as much as Luftwaffe.
for raid of Dieppe raid, you shall remember that between 1942 to first half of 1944, JG 1, JG 2, JG 26 and JG 11 may made the most accurate claims among fighter units of all nations in WWII, about 70% accurate, but there were some good reasons for this, they were on defensive, each units had its own region of opertive, there were no battle on the land. so it was not surprised that after allies landing at Normande, the overclaime of Luftwaffe in west Europ increased dramatically again.

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Erich
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Post by Erich » 02 Sep 2004 04:11

and to add to the Luftwaffe claiming in 43-45 over the Reich you had a very good ground to air organization and the pilots were in constant contact with the ground units where downed Allied a/c could be checked for verification. Also I do not feel that 44-45 Luftwaffe claioms were very much overinflated, and in fact surprisingly there are several air battles were claims to losses have come out equal and we can almost pin-point who shot down whom.........

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Post by varjag » 02 Sep 2004 11:47

Seems to me that Mars evaluation is pretty close to the truth. Divide any fighter-pilots claims by 3 and we're pretty close to the truth. Years ago I read about a :3 + x2 formula for the wartime claims and admissions of losses. It went - divide claims by 3 - multiply admitted losses by the opposition by 2 - and, you have a reasonably accurate picture of what happened in any particular air-battle. Of course there were exceptions - but the formula isn't a bad one.

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Victor
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Post by Victor » 02 Sep 2004 15:35

Charlemagne1943 wrote: On 22 June 1941 German claims against the Russian Air Force numbered 322 aerial kills against Soviet admissions of 336 lost in air combat.


There were also at least 10 claims made by Romanian fighters that day and several made by bomber machine-gunners, which should be added to the Axis total.

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Post by Tony Williams » 02 Sep 2004 16:15

Much overclaiming was accidental. Planes were often attacked - separately - by more than one fighter, or may have been thought to be out of control but recovered later. Worst of all were bomber gunners in the big USAAF B-17 and B-24 formations; every gunner who could, opened up at every fighter which attacked, and of course confidently claimed it as 'theirs' if it went down. Typically, there were ten claims for every kill.

In the BoB the RAF had a hard job keeping an accurate score despite being the 'home team'. The claims figures from each squadron were compiled centrally by a couple of people in HQ who had no time to check anything. So it was down to the squadron CO to decide whether or not a pilot's claim was valid, and this wasn't always easy. They were too busy to chase around the countryside looking for wrecks, and many of their targets went down in the sea anyway.

I think it was easier for night-fighters - they were one-on-one engagements, the pilots could generally see clearly if there was a shoot-down (and had the time to watch it), and the reports of wrecks could be collated the next day and compared with claims. In the mass combat of day attacks, all was confusion and no-one had a clear picture of what was happening.

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Post by - Barbarossa Isegrim - » 06 Sep 2004 08:15

Hop wrote:You can find many of the Luftwaffe claims lists at http://tonywood.cjb.net/

The one covering the Battle of Britain shows the Luftwaffe fighters claimed around 2000 single engined fighters during the BoB. The RAF lost around 900 to all causes on operations, including accidents, bombers defensive fire etc.


Deighton mentions the RAF`s losses amounted 1960 fighters during the BoB, which comes to very close to the claims filed (but not verified) in those LW papers. It`s highly likely that many RAF fighters were so badly damaged that they had to be written off completely after (crash)landing, which is not far off what LW pilots and their witness have seen, ie. a Hurricane taking a very heavy pounding, it`s engine stopped, control surfaces torn off etc.

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Post by gabriel pagliarani » 06 Sep 2004 15:58

Tony Williams wrote:....In the BoB the RAF had a hard job keeping an accurate score despite being the 'home team'. The claims figures from each squadron were compiled centrally by a couple of people in HQ who had no time to check anything. So it was down to the squadron CO to decide whether or not a pilot's claim was valid, and this wasn't always easy. They were too busy to chase around the countryside looking for wrecks, and many of their targets went down in the sea anyway...

EXCUSATIO NON PETITA ACCUSATIO MANIFESTA. No rules for internal british propaganda?Believable? :roll:

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Post by Tony Williams » 06 Sep 2004 19:41

My comment about the way that the RAF kept score during the Battle of Britain comes from a very detailed presentation by the historian Arthur Price to the RAF Historical Association.

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Topspeed
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Post by Topspeed » 06 Sep 2004 20:12

It would be sometimes nice to hear what ever happened to individual plane that were produced by the allies. Finns have a complete book for each individual aircraft that was used during the war.

In 1945 only USA produced roughly 100 000 aeroplanes. Soviets produced some 37 000 IL-2s alone. Has anyone actually counted whatever happened to them planes ? How many were shot down ? That would easily add up if the german claims were correct and furthermore where and when were they damaged and destroyed.

I see in England such books exist.


regards,

Juke T

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Erich
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Post by Erich » 06 Sep 2004 20:37

Juke you are probably asking for a day by day iteniary of every GErman Geschwader serving on the Ost front. CAn only think of Christer Bergströms Balck cross/REd star volumes but since I do not own any of these very fine books I cannot say if it is day by day or overviews.
I own several older titles but again things are mentioned in such quick succession nothing can be attained specifically unless a noted ace was covered with a mulitple victory day, and that still does not help, as losses from Il-2's from many types of German a/c as well as the Me 262 and of course different Fla/flak units........

Erich :D

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Topspeed
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Post by Topspeed » 06 Sep 2004 20:42

Right Erich flak has a lot of kills too. That makes it more difficult to get right figures.

Am I stupid or what.

cheers,

Juke T

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