Discussions on the Holocaust and 20th Century War Crimes. Note that Holocaust denial is not allowed. Hosted by David Thompson.


Post by Ezboard » 29 Sep 2002 15:01

Unregistered User
(10/18/00 7:16:29 am)
Reply Tiefflieger
Maybe somebody can answer me this question.
Was there an official order for American Fighter Bombers [Tiefflieger] to shoot at anything or anybody on the ground ?
People,Children,Animals,Hospitals etc.
H Bremser

Al H
Unregistered User
(10/18/00 3:35:11 pm)
Reply Tieffliegers(War criminels?)
I don't know why!
Wittnessed myself in 45 several incidents where strictly civilians with kids etc where targeted only in the countryside and mainly along roads.
The worst I've seen was a plainly marked red cross train filled with wounded ones to the rim,while stopped at a little station.Blood
was flowing out the doors.
I met one of those pilots in later
years ,when confronted he said those missiqns where the most enjoyable ones in his courier.

Unregistered User
(10/18/00 8:10:58 pm)
Reply Allied Fighters
I had a co-worker who was a retired fighter pilot.According to him since many German military carriers used bicycles.Therefore anyone on a bike was considered a legimate military target.

No doubt that in the fog of war mistakes were made and innocent people suffered on both sides.

Several years ago there was an excellent commentary on a Thunder Bolt fighter pilot and his experiences from D-day to VE day. Number 1, he hated the war and killing people, but that was his job. If he did not kill a enemy solider, then that same enemy solider may of caused the death of an allied solider some other day. Number 2, the missions he hated the most were the strafing missions. They were very dangerous since one is at a very low altitude and had no time to recover in the event of flak. Many of his fellow pilots died on such missions.

To call allied pilots war criminals, men who risked their lives to free people they never had met before from the yoke of Nazism, is an insult to all people of the free world.

Such ballant ignorance speaks for its self!!!!!!!

Marcus Wendel
Posts: 617
(10/19/00 10:26:43 am)
Reply Re: Allied Fighters

Why should not those allied soldiers who commited warcrimes be called warcriminals and indeed be punished as such??
Just because you are fighting against a dictatorship does not make it ok to commit warcrimes!

Warcriminals on both sides should be punished, not only the ones on the loosing side!


Registered User
Posts: 2
(10/19/00 2:23:37 pm)
Re: Allied Fighters
Firstly, I agree with Marcus, it always appears to be the winners who decides who are the war crimminals, but there are such people on all sides and they should all be tried.

Secondly,we should differentiate between deliberate murder and events which "just happen", for example, my Aunt Ursula lost a leg when an allied plane shot at her and a group of schoolgirls who were standing in a field. She was never bitter about this and I cannot blame the pilot of that aircraft either. These things happen, and having been a soldier in a war myself, I know that many times such tragedies do not occur intentionally, but through the choas of war, the pilot probably could only make out a group of figures standing on the ground; however, had he knowingly attacked schoolchildren then he would be, IMHO, guilty of a war crime.
One One Bravo

Edited by: PiperJakels at: 10/19/00 2:25:01 pm

Unregistered User
(10/19/00 4:44:33 pm)
Reply War Criminals

Perhaps my first message could of been more precise.

Sure war criminals should be punished to the full extend of the law regardless of their nationality. As the old cliche goes "Two wrongs do not make a right"

However, I still think there is a huge difference between individual crimes as opposed to the instionlized nature of war crimes committed by the Axis.

Ture the victor writes the histroy books, but is there not a difference between a random trigger happy pilot and a regime that deliberate planed the death of millions? There is in my book.

PS: Perhaps we will have to agree to disagree on this one, but I still very much enjoy the massage forum most of the time. Keep up the excellent reserch!

Registered User
Posts: 37
(10/20/00 3:59:01 am)
Reply Tiefflieger
Read the book "Yeager - An Autobiography by General Chuck Yeager" published by Bantam Books 1985, ISBN 0 - 553 - 05093 - 1. On page 62 Yeager writes: ".....That fall our fighter group received orders from the Eighth Airforce to stage a maximum effort. Our seventy-five Mustangs were assigned an area of fifty miles by fifty miles inside Germany and ordered to strafe anything that moved. The object was to demoralize the German population. Nobody was asking our opinion about whether we were actually demoralizing the survivors or may be enraging them to stage their own maximum effort in behalf of the Nazi war effort. We were not asked how we felt zapping people. It was a miserable, dirty mission, but we all took off on time and did it. If it occurred to anyone to refuse to participate (nobody refused, as I recall) that person would have probably been court-martialed. I remember sitting next to Bochkay at the briefing and whispering to him: "If we' re gonna do things like this, we sure as hell better make sure we are on the winning side!....."
These are Yeager's own words.
Of 75 pilots nobody showed character and nobody refused. The staff order to attack civilians was a typical criminal act down to the letter and the criminal order was followed by 75 pilots who all should be hanged for this mission. This was no mix up of identities; this was blunt murder of innocents!

Unregistered User
(10/20/00 6:44:58 am)
Reply Tiefflieger
The Change in Policy on Escort Fighter Function

Another thing happened at the same time as the arrival of the P-51 that greatly aided the Allies and fully utilized the great capabilities of the Mustang. Before the beginning of 1944, the bomber escort's primary function was to fly alongside the bombers, repel any attacks made on the bombers, and generally make sure the bombers stayed safe. Indeed, the motto of the Eighth Air Force Fighter Command was "Our Mission is to Bring the Bombers Back Alive." One day at the beginning of the year, Jimmy Doolittle, who was the commander of the Eighth Air Force, saw a plaque on the wall with this motto on it and said, "That's not so. Your mission is to destroy the German Air Force. . .Take that damned thing down." (Copp 456) And just days before, in his New Year's Day address to the Eighth Air Force command, General Arnold had said, "My personal message to you-this is a MUST- is to destroy the enemy air force wherever you find them, in the air, on the ground and in the factories." (Copp 456) What this meant was that the escort fighters were not tied to the bombers anymore, and were free to roam over the countryside and through the towns and cities, destroying at will. The sweeping Mustangs were released to ravage German convoys, trains, antiaircraft gun emplacements, warehouses, airfields, factories, radar installations, and other important things that would be impractical to be attacked by bombers.

Note this sentence: and were free to roam over the countryside and through towns and cities,destroying at will.
This order gave the green light for the Allied Fighters to attack anything and anybody Woman children,farmers,animals,hospitals,clearly marked hospital trains etc.

Unregistered User
(10/27/00 7:33:06 am)
Reply Eyewitness accounts
March 1944 BetweenSchonungen and Gaedheim (Lower Franconia) hostile low fliers attack a clearly marked German, military hospitaltrain with on-board weapons. Numerous wounded ones are killed or hurt again seriously. (179) In Stendal women and children, who work in the gardens, are attacked by hostile fliers from 20 to 30m height and fired at with on-board weapons, whereby dead ones and wounded one are to be deplored. (311) In Templin (Uckermark) hostile airplanes throw with the daylight attack high-explosives bomb on the district hospital or military hospital, which is marked by the red cross clearly. Result: 200 civilians and wounded dead (578) after an aerial combat between German and American flighter .Two US fighters , approach a German pilot hanging on the parachute and shoot him in air. (158)
März 1944<
Babel Fish Translation

Orig. German Version: Eyewitness accounts taken at the American Internment Camp 91 Darmstadt [Germany] in 1946. [Partial List]

Zwischen Schonungen und Gädheim (Unterfranken) greifen feindliche Tiefflieger einen deutschen, sichtbar gekennzeichneten Lazarettzug mit Bordwaffen an. Zahlreiche Verwundete werden getötet oder erneut schwer verletzt.
In Stendal werden Frauen und Kinder, die in den Gärten arbeiten, von feindlichen Fliegern aus 20 bis 30m Höhe angegriffen und mit Bordwaffen beschossen, wobei Tote und Verwundete zu beklagen sind. (311)

In Templin (Uckermark) werfen feindliche Flugzeuge beim Tagesangriff Sprengbomben auf das Kreiskrankenhaus bzw. Lazarett, das deutliche mit dem Roten Kreuz gekennzeichnet ist. Ergebnis: 200 Zivilisten und Verwundete tot. (578)

Nach einem Luftkampf zwischen deutschen und amerikanischen Jagdfliegern drehen zwei USA-Maschinen ab, fliegen einen am Fallschirm hängenden deutschen Piloten an und erschießen ihn mit dem MG in der Luft. (158

Unregistered User
(10/30/00 10:13:34 pm)
Reply Tiefflieger
Regarding a policy basis for strafing attacks against German civilians, American military historian Ronald Schaffer has identified it as Operation Clarion, "which sent American fighters and bombers all over Germany to attack targets in small towns and villages" ("American Bombing Ethics in World War II: The Bombing of German Civilians," in The Military in America: From the Colonial Era to the Present, New York: The Free press, 1986, pp. 350-365).

Schaffer traces the evolution of Operation Clarion from an earlier proposed massive air attack on Berlin, Operation Thunderclap. Operation Clarion was planned to target civilians in small towns and villages, and was euphemistically described in the planning stage as aimed at "transportation objectives." This didn't fool General James Doolittle, commander of the Eighth Air Force, who warned that strafing German civilians behind the battle lines might provoke the Germans to retaliate against allied POWs. General Ira Eaker, then C-in-C of Allied air forces in the Mediterranean, wrote to General Spaatz, C-in-C US Strategic Air Forces in Europe, that Clarion would convince the Germans "that we are the barbarians that they say we are, for it would be perfectly obvious to them that this is primarily a large scale attack on civilians, as, in fact, it of course will be."

Operation Clarion was nonetheless approved by Eisenhower and ordered to proceed in February, 1945. Thus the experiences of Chuck Yeager and those of various German civilians were not isolated ones.

Schaffer goes on to note that "Clarion was only one of a series of operations in 1945 officially described as attacks on transportation but really aimed largely at reducing civilian morale," operations which included massive attacks on places in central Germany, such as Dresden, and aimed not merely at the stationary population but at German refugees fleeing before the Soviets.

Schaffer's Wings of Judgement: American Bombing in World War II (Oxford University Press, 1985), which I have not seen, is said to be a more complete treatment than the article cited above.

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