Seelöwe: German Air Operations and anti-ship Capabilities

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thejester
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Let's discuss - Seelowe and the Luftwaffe

Post by thejester » 27 Apr 2007 02:07

From here
RichTO90 wrote:Naw, I just like to argue, doesn't have to have tracks or be painted green.

And I'm afraid I was pretty much ignoring the air dimension on purpose, since it essentially would have been useless.

1). The German assault convoy approach was at night, with the landings scheduled to begin at circa 0630 hours IIRC. How does the Luftwaffe, find and strike RN vessels at night? It's likely the Royal Navy will be amongst the convoys and their escorts before daylight when the Luftwaffe arrives amid the considerable confusion....do I need to define "fratricide" for anyone?

2). Luftwaffe antiship capabilities were extremely poor at this time. Their aerial torpedos literally did not work (those used in the spring of 1941 and later against shipping were initially borrowed and then copied from Regia Aeronautica designs that did work). Their bombs worked....sort of. Unfortunately though again at that time only against unarmored or lightly armored vessels. Most of the German bomb inventory were SC (General Purpose) and SD (Semi-armor Piercing) types with poor antiarmor capability (essentially Revenge and any other vessel with a 3-inch armor deck or turret/conning tower roof were more or less impervious to penetrations, which leaves blast effects that would likely not have much result against a battleship and might not be serious versus a cruiser. And worse, none of the Luftwaffe units were trained in antiship operations - they were good against stationary anchored targets (the destoyers lost at Dunkirk were either stopped or moving slowly and not maneuvering because of the shallows), but woefully incapable against moving targets, especially small fast ones like DD and cruisers (total losses of moving vessels in the Channel to Stukas during the whole of August was four armed trawlers and a netlayer IIRC). Essentially the only specialized antiship assets they had at he time were the Küstenflieger and Bordeflieger and they were all either inappropriate or fully occupied in naval reconnaissance operations, and there were only about three dozen of them anyway, so a very finite asset.

It wasn't until 1941 and the arrival of numbers of PC (AP) bombs, Italian torpedos, and a lot of additional practice that they got good at antiship operations, and even then it was hit or miss, their actually performance against an unprotected, target rich environment at Crete wasn't really all that great. The heyday, such as it was, of KG 40 out of Bordeaux was 1941-1942, they just didn't have the capability in 1940.

3) The result would have been losses to the RN, of course, but the notion that they had the capability to actually halt a determined Royal Navy attack on the invasion convoys is simply untenable. To take Crete as an example again, four RN cruisers and 8 destroyers were lost directly or indirectly to Luftwaffe attacks. Except they were lost over six different days over a ten-day period of operations where there the Luftwaffe had complete air superiority and well-nigh air supremacy. And the worse loss was 22 May when three cruisers and a destroyer were sunk....except that York was lost in Suda Bay to cumulative damage that had occured over the last days.

So our baseline really has to be that the maximum expected damage done by the Luftwaffe would be two or three cruisers/destroyers on the day of the invasion. You could argue for doubling that to account for the quicker turnaround time flying from France to England versus from Greece to Crete, but then I could counter with the full force of Fighter Command (only about 60 percent of which was ever committed at one time to the Battle of Britain). And that is a true pinprick when the initial size of the force committed would have been on the order of 1 BB, 5 CL, 47 DD, and 12 sloops and torpedo boats, plus literally hundreds of smaller warships and auxiliaries.
A couple of comments:

- I think you've got the number of ships sunk in the Channel during August wrong. Going off the top of my head, during the 'convoy battles' (or were they in July? Still relevant, either way) the Luftwaffe was able to sink several steamers and at least one destroyer.

- IMO the only examples that should be used are Dunkirk and Norway, as they accurately represent Luftwaffe anti-shipping capabilities of the time. A couple of telling examples:

Of the 9 destroyers sunk at Dunkirk, only five were sunk by aircraft, though the majority of the 19 put out of action were because of the Luftwaffe. It should be noted that many destroyers were so overloaded they feared capsizing, and kept wartertight doors open to fit more men in. There at least one example of a destroyer (Esk) keeping a steamer (Scotia) afloat while transferring 2,000 French soldiers from one to the other. That the Luftwaffe could not halt the evacuation despite long absences of the RAF speaks volumes about their anti-shipping capacity at the time.

There's also the case study off Norway where 'for three hours ninety bombers lashed at the Home Fleet as it steamed off the Norwegian coast. The destroyer Ghurka was sunk, and two cruisers were lightly damaged; so was Rodney, hit by a heavy bomb which failed to explode but splintered her armoured deck." (Miller, War At Sea, p. 65-66). If the best conversion the Luftwaffe can get off 90 bombers is two hits, then the invasion fleet is in a world of trouble.

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Re: Let's discuss - Seelowe and the Luftwaffe

Post by RichTO90 » 27 Apr 2007 04:39

thejester wrote:- I think you've got the number of ships sunk in the Channel during August wrong. Going off the top of my head, during the 'convoy battles' (or were they in July? Still relevant, either way) the Luftwaffe was able to sink several steamers and at least one destroyer.
Sorry, my bad, that is just the RN losses and I did a quick count. Total shipping losses of all types in Home waters in July were 25 (11 were RN, 18,438 GRT) totaling 50,528 GRT and in August were 10 (6 RN, 2,250 GRT) totaling 50,151 GRT (I think that may be a typo). The Channel loss was mostly 8 August when 3 coasters (3,581 GRT) were sunk.

But that does not include the 7 fishing boats (1,513 GRT) they sunk. :D (See Table 5 in Hooten's "eagle in Flames").

RN Losses were:

July 4 - Auxiliary anti-aircraft ship FOYLE BANK (R, 5,582t, 1930), German aircraft, Portland, S England
July 11 - Yacht WARRIOR II (R, 1,124t, 1904), sunk by aircraft off Portland.
July 19 - Tanker/oiler WAR SEPOY (5,574t, 1919), damaged by aircraft off Dover. Constructive total loss
July 19 - Trawler CRESTFLOWER (550t, 1930), foundered after damage by aircraft off Portsmouth.
July 20 - Destroyer BRAZEN (1,360t, 1931), sunk by aircraft off Dover, S England
July 24 - Trawler FLEMING (R, 356t, 1929), sunk by aircraft, Thames Estuary.
July 24 - Trawler KINGSTON GALENA (550t, 1934), sunk by aircraft off Dover.
July 24 - Trawler RODINO (R, 230t, 1913), sunk by aircraft off Dover.
July 27 - Destroyer CODRINGTON (Leader, 1,540t, 1930), bombed and sunk in Dover Harbour, S England
July 29 - Destroyer DELIGHT (1,375t, 1933), bombed and sunk off Portland, S England
July 29 - Yacht GULZAR (R, 197t, 1934), sunk in air attack, Dover Harbour.
August 2 - Trawler CAPE FINISTERRE (R, 590t, 1939), sunk by aircraft off Harwich.
August 12 - Trawler PYROPE (R, 295t, 1932), sunk by aircraft, Thames Estuary.
August 12 - Trawler TAMARISK (545t, 1925), sunk by aircraft bombs, Thames Estuary
August 13 - Trawler ELIZABETH ANGELA (R, 253t, 1928), sunk by aircraft in Downs.
August 20 - Trawler RESPARKO (R, 248t, 1916), sunk by aircraft at Falmouth.
August 21 - Netlayer KYLEMORE (R, 319t, 1897), German aircraft, Harwich, E England

(See "ROYAL NAVY VESSELS LOST AT SEA, 1939-45" at http://www.naval-history.net/)

And to do it required 1,600 sorties just from 1 July to 9 August.

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Post by Andreas » 27 Apr 2007 09:27

What is interesting however regarding Crete is that in the case of the second convoy, the Luftwaffe and the single escort together managed to drive off the vastly superior attacking surface units. But that was a year later, in conditions of German air supremacy, probably better weather conditions, and a more capable Luftwaffe. Nevertheless I think you are maybe a bit harsh on the Luftwaffe. The performance at Crete was not that bad, especially if you also look at damaged units, not just sunk.
Seekrieg wrote:22.5.: Force C (KAdm. King), jetzt mit den Kreuzern Naiad, Perth, Calcutta und Carlisle sowie den Zerstörern Kandahar, Nubian und Kingston, greift die zweite dt. Motorseglerstaffel an. Infolge des geschickten Einsatzes des sichernden ital. Torpedoboots Sagittario (FKpt. Cigala) und rollender Luftangriffe durch Ju 88 der I./LG.l (Hptm. Cuno Hoffmann) und III./KG. 30 sowie Do 17 des KG. 2 (Oberst Rieckhoff) verliert der Geleitzug nur 2 Fahrzeuge. Naiad und Carlisle (Capt. Hampton †) werden durch Bombentreffer beschädigt. Force C dreht daraufhin ab, um sich mit der schweren Deckungsgruppe (KAdm. Rawlings) zu vereinigen, die im Laufe des Nachmittags ebenfalls Ziel heftiger Luftangriffe durch Ju 87 des StG.2 (Oberstlt. Dinort), Ju 88 der I./LG.l und II./LG.l (Hptm. Kollewe) und Me 109-Jagdbomber ist. Die I./LG.l und eine Jabo-Rotte (Oblt. Huy) der III./JG.77 erzielen mehrere Nahtreffer auf dem Schlachtschiff Warspite (Capt. Crutchley), Ju 87 versenken den Zerstörer Greyhound, Ju 88 und Ju 87 den Kreuzer Gloucester (Capt. Rowley †), der mit rd. 45 Offizieren und 648 Mann der Besatzung untergeht; deutsche Seenotflugzeuge Do 24 retten 65 Überlebende. 2 einzelne Me 109-Jabo der I./LG. 2 (Hptm. lhlefeld) treffen am Abend den Kreuzer Fiji (Capt. William-Powlett) so schwer, daß er aufgegeben werden muß. Kingston und Kandahar retten 523 Überlebende. Bei den Luftangriffen werden Naiad und Carlisle erneut getroffen, das Schlachtschiff Valiant (Capt. Morgan) leichter beschädigt.
All the best

Andreas

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Post by RichTO90 » 27 Apr 2007 15:05

Andreas wrote:Nevertheless I think you are maybe a bit harsh on the Luftwaffe. .
Yep. But the problem is that even in term of damaged and sunk, they were never able to inflict casualties in one day that would have been required to halt the British reaction.

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Post by LWD » 27 Apr 2007 23:13

I remember looking up an account of one of the cruisers sunk or heavily damaged at Crete. One of the points made is that they didn't take any serious damage until they were out of AA ammo. Other ships in their unit were also very low on ammo when they took serious or fatal damage.

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Tim Smith
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Post by Tim Smith » 27 Apr 2007 23:32

LWD wrote:I remember looking up an account of one of the cruisers sunk or heavily damaged at Crete. One of the points made is that they didn't take any serious damage until they were out of AA ammo. Other ships in their unit were also very low on ammo when they took serious or fatal damage.
Running out of AA ammo could have been a problem for British warships during Operation Sealion.

While the individual German bombers might not be that accurate, there would certainly be a lot of them. And the more there are, the more separate attacks there will be on British ships. And the more separate attacks there are, the more AA ammunition the ships will shoot off.

While the battleships were big enough to carry vast amounts of ammunition, the cruisers couldn't carry so much, and the destroyers even less.

The temptation for the British will be to put into port at night to replenish ammunition stocks.

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Post by LWD » 28 Apr 2007 00:07

The temptation for the British will be to put into port at night to replenish ammunition stocks.
Indeed but then it's better to take yourself out of the fight for a few hours or even a day or two and rearm than it is to loose the ships because she can't defend herself. Ammo consumption of main gun rounds would also likely be quite high. Indeed if the RN does a night intercept they might have to put back into port to resupply with ammo even if they weren't engaged by the LW.

I just looked it up at:
http://home.freeuk.com/johndillon/airat ... HMS%20Fiji.
Admiral King, now in command of the combined force, was not aware of the state of AA ammunition in the ships outside of Force C. Had he been aware he presumably would not have sent the cruisers Fiji and Gloucester (Force B) to give AA support to the two destroyers picking up survivors. The Fiji had earlier reported having only 18% of her AA ammunition remaining, the Gloucester was a little better off but still with only 30%.
They had been under heavy air attack for several days I believe. Not sure when they last topped up with ammo. That said I suspect that they would also be using some of their AA ammo on the German light ships.

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Post by thejester » 28 Apr 2007 00:41

The same problem occurred in Dynamo. After 2-3 days the destroyers were running low on ammunition, and this coincided with good weather and an absence of the RAF. Result - bloodiest day for the destroyers, with something like 1 sunk and 6 put out of action.

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Post by RichTO90 » 28 Apr 2007 19:40

thejester wrote:The same problem occurred in Dynamo. After 2-3 days the destroyers were running low on ammunition, and this coincided with good weather and an absence of the RAF. Result - bloodiest day for the destroyers, with something like 1 sunk and 6 put out of action.
Again I think some of the point is being missed. The invasion fleet would likely be engaged seriatim by the British forces stationed at the eastern end of the Channel and western end of the Channel, then by the reaction force of the Home Fleet at Rosyth, which would begin to move as soon as (for most of this period the destroyers were at half-hour notice for steaming and the larger ships at one hour notice) as soon as detected by the Channel picket or radar, I expect about midway through their journey.

Now, with a 13+ hour crossing time and an expected landing time of circa 0630, that means that they would be detected probably about midnight, midway across the channel. Their problem is, that at that point the convoys at the eastern end are about 30 to 45 minutes economical steaming - about 15 nautical miles - from the reaction forces, giving them somewhere between four and five hours in which to engage the convoys - without using any AA ammunition. Those at the western end have a bit less time, but still about two to three hours.

And you could expect that with that much notice that Fighter Command will be out in strength patrolling the Channel as well. Finally, you must count that the only Luftwaffe arm capable at this time of the effect seen at Crete are the Stukagruppen, which had just been withdrawn circa 21 August to refit, re-equip, and retrain from their mauling in mid-August - as I mentioned in a previous post from 13 August when there were 365 Stuka on hand and 286 operational to 7 September when there were only 174 on hand and 133 operational. That may be compared to the 205 operational Stukas available for operations against the fleet at Crete, where they encountered no air opposition.

So you have the situation in September 1940 of a Stuka strike force two-thirds the strength of that at Crete, albeit it capable of executing two sorties to one due to distance (a mid-morning and late afternnon strike was typical during August operations), attacking a much stronger RN force in a heavily contested air space. Worse, it can only be expected that the Luftwaffe could only intervene to any degree well after the wolves had gotten amongst the fold. There would be no "2-3 days' engagement, so the chance of running out of AAA ammunition is remote.

I simply cannot see any reasonable way that the result would be anything other than two to three British ship losses during the day, with possibly twice that number suffering damage of one degree or another. That would mean that on the close order of 50 British destroyers and cruisers....along with Revenge....would be free to rampage amongst the German naval 'escort' and their charges for three to four hours before the Luftwaffe arrived and would then be engaged by the Luftwaffe as they returned to base. The only other result of such an effort by the Luftwaffe, would likely be the high attrition of the Stukas, probably at least similar to, but likely more than was suffered in August, which could well knock out that force for the rest of Seelöwe. Oh, and of course the complete disruption of the landing and high losses amongst the troops.

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Post by RichTO90 » 28 Apr 2007 21:52

CharlesRollinsWare wrote:And for all those Luftwaffe believers, other than slow merchants and auxiliaries and warships caught with little if any way on in the confines of Norwegian fjords or laying laying off the Freench beaches, the Luftwaffe hardly had a record of success in 1939 and 1940, and had absolutely no capability of inflicting damage at night and little chance of fighter escorts supporting the bombers where they were likely to find the Royal Navy in daylight.

Mark E. Horan
Thanks for the additional details and confirmation. You also reminded me that the RN had - like the Japanese - done quite a bit of training and planning for nightime actions, often in cooperation withthe FAA. Note that the coastal bombardments executed during the summer and fall of 1940 were usually at night, with illumination missions being executed by the FAA. And as of course Taranto shows, the FAA was also experimenting with night attacks, so had at least a nascent night attack capability that the Luftwaffe did not have.

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Post by CharlesRollinsWare » 28 Apr 2007 23:58

Rich;

Actually, the pioneering work for FAA night torpedo and dive-bombing operations had been fully worked out during the period 1935-1938, prior to the arrival of RADAR. However, by 1940 the FAA opted to make night attacks its PRIMARY mode of operation. During the late spring and early summer, some senior aviators (pilots and observers), all with former service in HMS Glorious' squadrons of the late 1930s that had spent countless hours practicing for the top secret attack on the Italian Fleet at Taranto, were brought together in the two TSR squadrons destined for the first of the new armoured carriers, HMS Illustirous, 815 and 819. The former began first, operating with Coastal Command and executing precision nighttime minelaying and dive-bombing attacks on targets primarily in occupied France. The aircraft were equipped with precision instrumentation designed to aid low altitude over the water flights (25' or less) in minimal visibility (no moon).

Meanwhile, the veterans of HMS Glorious' three TSR sqaudrons, 812, 823, and 825 (only six crews of 823 had been lost with the ship), along with 821 left behind by HMS Ark Royal when she deployed south, and 816 and 818 nominally assigned to HMS Furious (though the later two spent much time at sea on Furious), operated within the UK practicing the same precision techniques, as was the first of the Albacore squadrons, 826. Thus, by the late summer, the FAA had a formidable strike force of seven TSR squadrons fully versed in night attack doctrine and able to attack the invasion forces should they make the attempt. Furthermore, fhree additional Albacore TSR squadrons were forming, 829, 827, and 828, although only the later was at squadron strength and even it needed working up as a unit.

Additionally, the two highly experienced squadrons aboard HMS Eagle, 813 and 824 were joined by a cadre of experts from the UK and began intensive training in the night attack doctrine, as were the two veteran TSR squadrons aboard HMS Ark Royal at Gibraltar. Meanwhile, HMS Illustrious only passed Malta in early September to join the Med Fleet for the express purpose of executing Operation "Judgement" on Taranto (which was planned to go off no later than October). While HMS Eagle would have assuredly stayed in the Med, had the invasion come off, both the fleet carriers could had returned to the UK and either operated from the sea flank or simply flown their TSRs ashore and returned South. About the only TSR squadron left out of the mix was 814, assigned to HMS Hermes and stranded in West Africa after her collision.

Finally, HMS Furious's fighter/dive bomber squadron, 801, was stationed on the East Coast throughout the period making regular long range attacks on Norway. Fully versed in dive-bomber attack doctrine, and making night takoffs, they would have represented another very real threat, particularly to the numerous "thin-skinned" troop carrying vessels.

Thus, by the late summer, the FAA was well prepared to operate against the invasion forces were the Germans to make the attempt. Operating from, or being able to stage to, small fields close to the coast, they would be able, in the short term, able to execute up to two attacks a night with high probibility of success especially considering the dearth of any practical night time defense against them!

Mark

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Seelöwe: German Air Operations and anti-ship Capabilities

Post by fredleander » 14 May 2007 11:51

Split from http://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic.php?t=69066 by the moderator - Andreas
Tiornu wrote:"Dive bombers are fairly effective against ships, but most German bombers are He111 or Do 17's, which can only manage shallow dives at best, so they are effectively level bombers."
The LW had done rather poorly at Dunkerque. The anti-ship capability we associate with Stukas in the Med had not yet developed.
How can you make such a conclusion....? The LW sunk more than 200 vessels in less than ideal conditions for themselves..... :)....and for two whole days Stukas weren't used at all. Due to fog at their bases in Germany.

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Post by RichTO90 » 15 May 2007 04:19

leandros wrote:
Tiornu wrote:"Dive bombers are fairly effective against ships, but most German bombers are He111 or Do 17's, which can only manage shallow dives at best, so they are effectively level bombers."
The LW had done rather poorly at Dunkerque. The anti-ship capability we associate with Stukas in the Med had not yet developed.
How can you make such a conclusion....? The LW sunk more than 200 vessels in less than ideal conditions for themselves..... :)....and for two whole days Stukas weren't used at all. Due to fog at their bases in Germany.
Good grief does your silliness know no bounds?

15 May HMS Valentine (DD) bombed in the Scheldt and beached.
19 May HMS Whitley (DD) bombed near Nieuport and beached.
21 May L'Adroit (DD) bombed and sunk off Dunkirk.
23 May Ourage (DD) bombed and sunk off Boulogne.
23 May Jaguar (DD) sunk by S-boot attack off Dunkirk (S-21 and S-23).
23 May Chacal (DD) bombed and sunk off Boulogne.
24 May HMS Wessex (DD) bombed and sunk sunk off Calais.
29 May HMS Grafton (DD) torpedoed and sunk by U-62 off Dunkirk.
29 May HMS Grenade (DD) bombed and sunk off Dunkirk.
29 May HMS Wakeful (DD) torpedoed and sunk by S-30.
30 May Bourrasque (DD) mined off Nieuport then sunk by shore gunfire.
31 May Sirocco (DD) torpedoed and sunk by S-23 and S-26.
1 June HMS Keith, Basilisk, Havant (DD) bombed and sunk off Dunkirk.
1 June Le Foudroyant (DD) bombed and sunk off Dunkirk.

Total British DD losses in the evacuation were 6 sunk and 19 damaged. The French had 7 DD sunk. There were also a reported nine "large vessels" sunk, presumably merchants, but I've only been able to track down one, SS Clan Macalister. Reportedly though 200 "smaller" vessels were lost. Those include:

Other RN vessels sunk by air attack in the evacuation from 28 May to 4 June were:

1 auxiliary AA ship
4 minesweepers
2 trawlers
2 tugs
1 yacht
1 armed boarding vessel
1 river gunboat
2 LCA
3 drifters
17 Total

At least 26 other warships were lost to other causes. The worst single day for the RN was 1 June when 7 warships were sunk by aircraft, 3 destroyers, 1 minesweeper, 1 river gunboat, and 2 tugs.

In total 28 of 47 destroyers committed were sunk or damaged by aircraft.

All in daylight.
Many while stationary or at dead slow.
For the loss of 132 aircraft.

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Post by fredleander » 15 May 2007 10:50

RichTO90 wrote:Good grief does your silliness know no bounds?
Please stop being personal. Read and learn!
RichTO90 wrote:15 May HMS Valentine (DD) bombed in the Scheldt and beached.
19 May HMS Whitley (DD) bombed near Nieuport and beached.
21 May L'Adroit (DD) bombed and sunk off Dunkirk.
23 May Ourage (DD) bombed and sunk off Boulogne.
23 May Jaguar (DD) sunk by S-boot attack off Dunkirk (S-21 and S-23).
23 May Chacal (DD) bombed and sunk off Boulogne.
24 May HMS Wessex (DD) bombed and sunk sunk off Calais.
29 May HMS Grafton (DD) torpedoed and sunk by U-62 off Dunkirk.
29 May HMS Grenade (DD) bombed and sunk off Dunkirk.
29 May HMS Wakeful (DD) torpedoed and sunk by S-30.
30 May Bourrasque (DD) mined off Nieuport then sunk by shore gunfire.
31 May Sirocco (DD) torpedoed and sunk by S-23 and S-26.
1 June HMS Keith, Basilisk, Havant (DD) bombed and sunk off Dunkirk.
1 June Le Foudroyant (DD) bombed and sunk off Dunkirk.

Total British DD losses in the evacuation were 6 sunk and 19 damaged. The French had 7 DD sunk. There were also a reported nine "large vessels" sunk, presumably merchants, but I've only been able to track down one, SS Clan Macalister. Reportedly though 200 "smaller" vessels were lost. Those include:

Other RN vessels sunk by air attack in the evacuation from 28 May to 4 June were:

1 auxiliary AA ship
4 minesweepers
2 trawlers
2 tugs
1 yacht
1 armed boarding vessel
1 river gunboat
2 LCA
3 drifters
17 Total

At least 26 other warships were lost to other causes. The worst single day for the RN was 1 June when 7 warships were sunk by aircraft, 3 destroyers, 1 minesweeper, 1 river gunboat, and 2 tugs.

In total 28 of 47 destroyers committed were sunk or damaged by aircraft.

All in daylight.
Many while stationary or at dead slow.
For the loss of 132 aircraft.
Equally divided between LW fighters and bombers......and an equal number of RAF fighters lost. Which should prove a nice net for the Luftwaffe.... :).... It is also known that these results were achieved under much less than ideal conditions for the LW. They were still flying from their German bases at the limit of their endurance, they still had to support the ongoing campaign elsewhere and they had fog at their bases for 2 1/2 day in the actual period. As a matter of fact, Stuka missions weren't flown at all for two whole days. In the first days the primary targets weren't even the shipping but the enemy forces ashore. Have you considered what might have happened with the more expensive RN vessels if the area hadn't been cluttered with a hundred other, smaller vessels.... :)

In a Seelöwe scenario the LW would have moved most of its complement close up to the coast. With any RN intruders as their first priority. According to the German plans.

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Post by RichTO90 » 15 May 2007 15:37

leandros wrote:Please stop being personal. Read and learn!
Try taking your own advice.
Equally divided between LW fighters and bombers......and an equal number of RAF fighters lost.
Christ this is getting boring. I supply all the data and you supply....? What exactly? I'm really beginning to wonder where your substance is or if you are just hot air?

Fighter Command losses over Dunkirk in Operation Dynamo were 113. There were actually only three days recorded by Fighter Command where operations were overstretched, on 27 May, the afternoon of 29 May and 1 June. Respectively on those days 20 aircraft of 193 sorties engaged, 19 aircraft of 148 sorties engaged, and 17 aircraft of 120 sorties engaged were lost. Note that on two of those days is also when the heaviest naval losses were suffered. Nevertheless, II. Fliegerkorps recorded 27 May as a "bad day" with 23 aircraft reported lost.
Which should prove a nice net for the Luftwaffe.... :).... It is also known that these results were achieved under much less than ideal conditions for the LW. They were still flying from their German bases at the limit of their endurance, they still had to support the ongoing campaign elsewhere and they had fog at their bases for 2 1/2 day in the actual period. As a matter of fact, Stuka missions weren't flown at all for two whole days.
No kidding? Note that Fighter Command aircraft weren't comfortably close to their bases either, on average they were roughly 125 kilometers from them. Note also that weather can effect both sides, there were no sorties engaged on 30 May, primarily due to weather over Dunkirk. Note also that German aircraft flying in support of Seelöwe will also be subject to endurance limitations that will be greater than those affecting Fighter Command. Note also the historical weather patterns I have given, weather is not only an effect in May and June, it becomes even more variable in September and October. Note also that followingthe losses of August the Stukageschwader were probably in no condition to undertake sustained operations, fog or no fog. Note also the less than ideal conditions the Luftwaffe would encounter in the Channel:

Naval combatants maneuvering at speed, unrestricted by the neccessity of slowing to load troops, nor limited by shallows. :roll:
Naval combatants operating in the dark.
:roll:
In the first days the primary targets weren't even the shipping but the enemy forces ashore. Have you considered what might have happened with the more expensive RN vessels if the area hadn't been cluttered with a hundred other, smaller vessels.... :)
That is possibly the most assinine argument I have ever found.
In a Seelöwe scenario the LW would have moved most of its complement close up to the coast. With any RN intruders as their first priority. According to the German plans.
Really? Would you care to let everyone know what and where the Luftwaffe bases and strengths were? And would you care to enlighten us, after being asked about a dozen times, just exactly how the Luftwaffe is supposed to find and engage the Royal Navy, in the dark with a nearly non-existant maritime strike capability? With a Stuka force reduced to about half strength? With a Luftwaffe that was never capable of sinking more than four stationary warships on a single day?

Sorry, bud, but you've earned yourself a place on my "ignore, not worth the time" list.

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