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 Post subject: Imagining Hell
PostPosted: Fri Dec 22, 2017 11:54 am 
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The helpless feeling of a bomber crew under attack could be one version.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f6npKLMK9fo

Makes you appreciate those scenes from Catch-22 a little more...

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 Post subject: Re: Imagining Hell
PostPosted: Fri Dec 22, 2017 9:06 pm 
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I wonder how many times friendly fire brought down bombers given how close they appear to during these raids.

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 Post subject: Re: Imagining Hell
PostPosted: Fri Dec 22, 2017 10:26 pm 
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I wonder how many times friendly fire brought down bombers given how close they appear to during these raids.
More times than the US military likes to remember.

Those close formations were actually adopted for better protection against fighters. Bomber losses were heavy early in the air war, and studies showed that a significant portion of losses to fighters came from lone bombers that had strayed from formation. So they adopted those dense "bomber box" formations to maximize defensive fire, much like a herd of animals fending off predators.

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 Post subject: Re: Imagining Hell
PostPosted: Fri Dec 22, 2017 10:37 pm 
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Stratego
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Location: Ft. Hood Texas
Thought escort fighters allowed them to change tactics? These look like B-17Fs so they have better overall armament.

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 Post subject: Re: Imagining Hell
PostPosted: Sat Dec 23, 2017 1:03 am 
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Not really. The defensive formations evolved in part to compensate for the lack of long range escort fighters in the early and mid war. The long range sheepdogs like the P-51 didn't come along until 1944-45, by which time the bombers were basically just making the rubble bounce. The defensive formations were still retained, though, because they made command and control of the whole bomber group easier.

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