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DoubleDickel t1_j5w0uwy wrote

Equally important:

"AAF had achieved air superiority to such an extent that it was no longer necessary for its warplanes to “hide.”


Flying_Dustbin t1_j5wuwwd wrote

“If it’s silver, it’s American. If it’s camouflaged, it’s English. If it’s invisible, it’s German.”

Allegedly this was a joke amongst Wehrmacht troops in the latter half of the war.


Daniel_The_Thinker t1_j5xfioc wrote

Must be crazy a crazy thing to just have a branch be destroyed in a few years.


ZLUCremisi t1_j5xkf97 wrote

There a book from a German Ace who soared a crippled US bomber and how he flew till almost the end of the war. When it was literally impossible to fly any more he walked to the front lines and surrendered, luckily not being stopped by the SS.


tobiasprinz t1_j5xsltr wrote

Are you referring to Hans Stiegler and the crew of B-17, Ye Olde Pub?

One of those few heart-warming war stories.

I did not know how he surrendered. Is that detail from Makos, Adam; Alexander, Larry (2012). A Higher Call: An Incredible True Story of Combat and Chivalry in the War-Torn Skies of World War II ?


NetDork t1_j5wuet1 wrote

The really clear indicator was when they went "Silver Plate" and didn't even install the defensive gun turrets anymore.


ash_274 t1_j5x3d7a wrote

That was specifically for the atomic-bomb carrying planes (and the Doolittle Raid B-25s) that had to shave all possible weight in order to accomplish their missions.

Silverplate B-29s also had redesigned bomb bays and wing mounting in order to accommodate the physical size of the bombs


Doc_Lazy t1_j5xx55u wrote

Doolittle's range extensions were something to behold. Highly recommend the book 'Target Tokyo' by James M. Scott for a good read up on the requirements, training and undertaking of that raid.


paiute t1_j5ywxh3 wrote

That's the one Ben Affleck led?


OtisTetraxReigns t1_j5zpo6o wrote

Doolittle was played by Alec Baldwin in that dreadful movie. Doolittle personally lead the raid. Although Affleck’s character does go on the mission, iirc.


paiute t1_j5zy0mu wrote

You mean the time the Japanese Navy attacked an American love triangle? The time when Ben Affleck went seamlessly from flying single engine fighters to taking a B25 off a carrier deck?

BTW, I was in Columbia South Carolina many years ago and needed to rent a car. Drove to a local small airport to get a van and spotted a monument which read that the Doolittle raiders had trained there.


indr4neel t1_j5yovsz wrote

Silverplate does refer to the bomb version, but starting with the B-29B all defensive weapons were removed except for the tail turret.


UnknownQTY t1_j683ntn wrote

B-29s also flew so high interceptor aircraft couldn’t reach them anyway.


indr4neel t1_j6k40re wrote

Mm, technically. Interceptor aircraft couldn't reach them because there weren't any interceptor aircraft by late war. The 1941 A6M2b Type 0 Model 21 (the most produced variant) actually had a higher service ceiling than the (admittedly not model-specific) stats Wikipedia gives for the B-29, at 33,000 vs 30,000 feet. "So high interceptors can't reach them" has historically been a pretty washed defense mechanism outside of stuff that's high and fast like the Blackbird.


joethedad t1_j5ylo6w wrote

This is the real reason, the correct one.