Part 18: Bombers over Holland
Episode 18: Bombers over Holland: Youtube, Polsy
Proper gentleman poster VKing provided us a good link to some actual British bomber chatter from World War 2 here. This guy's channel is actually full of radio chatter from contemporary wars and it's all extremely cool, so if you consider yourself a military or history buff I'd highly recommend browsing it.
Paragon1 posts the best military poem I have seen in a long, long time.
Randall Jarrell posted:
The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner
From my mother's sleep I fell into the State,
And I hunched in its belly till my wet fur froze.
Six miles from earth, loosed from its dream of life,
I woke to black flak and the nightmare fighters.
When I died they washed me out of the turret with a hose.
Also, Psion lays out something I forgot to properly elaborate on in the episode:
Even looking at a ball turret - I got to go through a B-17 and B-24 recently - is depressing as hell. Just look at those things and you realize how terrible it was. I don't even mean the obvious of any belly landing or hydraulics battle damage means you're practically guaranteed to die and to both know it in advance and see it coming (which is bad enough, thank you) but being in one is ten hours in a contortionist pose - basically sort of wrapped in a sling and told to deal with it - unable to move much with your gunsights jammed into your face and if you have to fire the twin fifties are seriously directly left and right of your head. I'm sure that was pleasant.
basically, buy anyone who was a ball gunner every drink they want.
And bumblingbee comes through with a fantastic picture of the British air memorial.
40 air victories? Pfff! Erich Hartmann amassed 352 over the course of 1404 sorties.
Although it has to be said that German pilots, once in the military, would serve throughout the whole war and not be sent home after a set amount of missions like their American counter-parts. Thus most German aces are naturally a good way ahead of most allied aces.
It also feels appropriate to post a picture I took a good while ago on a trip to Plymouth.