Larry D. wrote:
Csaba: that's a shockingly cheap shot. I am very surprised. Next time you are flying along a tree-lined country road at 100 meters altitude and 350 knots indicated air speed in a P-51D Mustang, you tell me which horse-drawn wagons and broken down old trucks and cars are civilian and which ones are military. Furthermore, unless I'm terribly confused and have had World War II all mixed up for the past 67 years, Hungary was on Mr. Hitler's side during the war and not on the Allied side. Anything moving on the roads and suspected of being enemy military traffic was fair game. But maybe I'm wrong.
As for the intentionally destroyed gun camera "evidence", I don't think so, Csaba. That's another myth. I have seen that accusation brought against the United States Air Force countless times over the past 50 years, but never once proven. I cannot believe that you really think that. If you do, then you do not know my country.
well, again a very sensitive question (and both sides are subjective, of course).
At first: I wrote easily identified civilians, not the mistakes. The US fighters strafed DELIBERATELY civilians many times in Hungary (I have a lot pf proofs, of course). Just two examples:
near Szombathely, on an EMPTY road, there were only two biking kids. The arriving Lightnings strafed and killed both of them. Should I comment it? Do you think, that it's possible to confuse a 8-years-old boy on a small bike with an armed soldier?
near Budapest, with some civilian (and zero military) traffic during the second US raid against Budapest (13 April, 1944), US fighters strafed and seriously holed an ambulance car (with big red crosses).
Fortunately, the crew leaft the vehicle in time, because they noticed, that the US fighters attacked the civilian traffic intensively(!) in front of them...
I have many other, much more tragic stories regarding the results of US strafing attacks.
Just another example, regarding the bombers (not mentioned the 1000's of killed civilians, who became the victims of the bad aiming): when they attacked airfields with fragmentation bombs, sometimes there were a big dust-storm over the target after the first BG's raid in summer, 1944. In this case, sometimes the other BG's dropped their bombs not to the dust, but they aimed the cosely villages (and these bombs had dreadful effect on these light buildings and on their inhabitants...)
So, Hungary was 'on Mr. Hitler's side'.
Do you know, WHY? Do you know, what did your politicians do with Hungary after the WW I? You should research the roots of the WW II as well, if you want to understand, what happened in Central Europe.
By the way, Hungary was occupied by Germany on 19 March, 1944 and these attacks happened after this date.
In the other occupied countries the results of the Allied strafings were the same (strafed and killed deliberately many civilians). Just ask, for example some Danish or French researchers (I guess, it will be a great surprise to you)
Regarding the gun camera films. According to my knowledge, after the missions these films were always evaluated by the Intelligence Officers so they met with a lot of 'interesting feats'.
Another view of the US fighters behaviour: some 15th AAF pilots strongly stated to me, that they 'never shot the baled out enemy and never heard this kind of stories'. I am sure, that high percent of the 15th AAF fighter pilots never did it, but significant number of them always fired the baled out Hungarian pilots (and killed some of them, seriously wounded others). I have proofs again, of course. So, I am just asking: if these gun camera films were not burned, how it's possible, that these pilots never heard these stories?
P.S. Larry, I highly respected you, your knowledge and your help, but in my humble opinion if you think, that your pilots were always the 'good guys with white collar' and never did any disgusting things, you are in a wrong way.
The Allied armies committed many warcrimes as well, but these warcrimes were generally not investigated and their guilties were never punished (do you know, for example, what did the Red Army do in Hungary? The ignorance is power in this case, many times it was a simply rampage) In Hungary and in Germany, we are researching the warcrimes, which were committed by our own armies and publicizing them as well. It would be great to hear the same regarding your armies too...