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USAAF Nose Art Research Project


 

Official Reports

KM 37. : BERLIN RAID = BOMBERS TOOK THE DANGEROUS STRAIGHT ROAD =
GERMAN TELEGRAPH SERVICE (DNB HOME) 13.47 30.4.44 (EXTRACTS)

BERLIN : WHEN AT NOON ON SATURDAY THE SIRENS WAILED OVER BERLIN, AND A LITTLE LATER SINGLE GROUPS OF US GANGSTER AIRCRAFT APPEARED OVER THE CAPITAL TO DROP THEIR TERROR BOMBS AIMLESSLY ON A WIDE-SPREAD RESIDENTIAL AREA OF THE CITY, THE OPERATIONS ROOM OF THE GERMAN AIR DEFENCES HAD BEEN WORKING AT A HIGH PITCH FOR A LONG TIME.

= NO FEINT ATTACKS POSSIBLE OWING TO LENGTH OF TIME FOR ASSEMBLY =
IT WAS QUITE CLEAR THAT THE AMERICANS ORIGINALLY HAD NO INTENTION OF APPEARING OVER THE TARGET IN SUCH SMALL AND DISPERSED FORMATIONS, BECAUSE AT THE BEGINNING OF THE OPERATION IT TOOK THEM ALMOST TWO HOURS OF VALUABLE TIME -- VALUABLE IN VIEW OF THE EXPENDITURE OF FUEL -- TO ASSEMBLE THEIR FORMATIONS OVER BRITAIN AFTER THEIR START FROM THE VARIOUS AIRFIELDS. THIS ASSEMBLING COST THE ENEMY GESCHWADERS SO MUCH OF THE TACTICAL SCOPE OF THEIR OPERATION THAT, CONTRARY TO THEIR HABITS ON EARLIER OCCASIONS, THEY HAD TO DO WITHOUT DECEPTIVE MANOEUVRES AND FEINT ATTACKS ON OTHER TARGETS, SETTING OUT ON THE DANGEROUS ROAD TO BERLIN ON A STRAIGHT AND RIGID EASTERLY COURSE.

= MURDEROUS MAGIC OF BERLIN'S A.A. FIRE =
AS THEY REACHED THE BERLIN BARRAGE, THE BOMBERS WERE RECEIVED BY HIGHLY CONCENTRATED A.A. FIRE. IN THE WORDS OF RETURNING U.S. CREWS . . . . THE GERMANS MUST HAVE PUT "AN A.A. GUN ON BERLIN'S EVERY ROAD AND HOUSE" -- SO MURDEROUS WAS BERLIN'S MAGIC OF FIRE . . . . . .


EXTRACT FROM B.B.C. INTERCEPTION OF GERMAN NEWS TELEGRAPH shortly after the raid on 29th April 1944