Lydd slammed into Comfort, cutting the drifter in half, and killing all who had been on board apart from Fisher and four other survivors. As if that was not bad enough, the Luftwaffe chose 29 May as the day when it made its first determined attempt to disrupt the evacuation. One of those damaged ships was the destroyer HMS Jaguar. She had taken on board about 1, soldiers, and was steaming away from the harbour when at about 4pm a bomb landed in the sea just a couple of yards away, and exploded. Another destroyer was on hand to tow Jaguar away, and to take her troops on board, but not before the survivors had seen the terrible injuries inflicted.
Stoker Arnold Saunders saw one soldier with a leg blown off, his only hope of surviving being the assistance provided by a comrade, who was attempting to stem the bleeding by putting on a tourniquet. Another image that was remembered by many of the survivors was a man who had had half his head blown off. But it was the burned men on some of the other bombed ships who appear to have suffered most. One of the worst cases was Bob Bloom, a year-old sickbay attendant on HMS Grenade, which had been tied up at the mole alongside Jaguar while the latter ship was taking soldiers on board.
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I was thrown up in the air and hit the deckhead. Then I fell back into the blast given off by the bomb. As it hit me, I put my hands up to my face to protect it. It felt as if I had been hit six times on the face with a whip. I was in such pain that I prayed to God to take me. But someone picked me up, and pushed me outside, and I ended up on the upper deck. I said something to him, but then I noticed his ribs were sticking out through his chest. He was dead.
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I looked at my hands. The skin was hanging off both of them as if I was trying to pull gloves off. My face was stinging like mad. My lips were swelling up all the time. I did not realise this at the time, but my nose had all but disappeared. Only the septum was left. Bloom somehow jumped into the water over the side of the ship, and climbed up on to the mole. From there he staggered on to Crested Eagle, a paddle steamer moored to the other side of the mole. Shortly afterwards, having also taken on board wounded men from Fenella, another personnel vessel beside the mole, that had been hit, Crested Eagle got under way, only to be hit by four of the bombs dropped by yet another wave of bombers.
Before he could be burned again by the fires ignited by the bombing, he jumped into the sea for the second time that day. Crested Eagle was beached near Bray Dunes, the beach to the north-east of Malo-les-Bains, where she became one of the landmarks for small ships striving to find the beach, but in the meantime those in the water had to swim for their lives.
They hung on to it and kicked with their legs, while I sat on it holding the ring.
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Bloom was eventually rescued by another ship, which took him to Ramsgate. Not that he knew much about the journey. Perhaps the most famous result of this were the Eagle Squadrons. Recruited and financed by Sweeney, over thirty Americans made their way to France before the Germans invaded in May, None got to fly in France, but several made their way to Britain. In Britain Sweeney's nephew, also called Charles, had already been busy. He took the idea to the Air Ministry, and in July, , they agreed that the handful of Americans already serving in the RAF, plus any new recruits, would be formed into their own national units, to be known as Eagle Squadrons.
The first, No. By this time the Sweeney's had recruited around 50 pilots, and arranged and paid for them to be smuggled to Canada and then make their way to Britain.
Royal Air Force in World War II
Now they handed responsibility over to the Clayton Knight Committee. I learned alot I didn't know, such as the extremely important role of Dowding. Jan 21, Mike Rabasco rated it really liked it Shelves: readathon-day A quick read I enjoyed this book. The short version first.
Due to my training as a historian my first Texas Teaching Field. I read quite a bit of good historical works during my college years, and after I graduated, I still read history. Now I am able to read historical works with the discerning eye that has developed for the past 40 odd years or so that since my undergraduate matriculation from Baylor University. Third, a comprehensive index to key information, presented in alphabetical form, again with links which work between index location and text being referenced.
Attention to detail particularly in the electronic editions of text or research volumes should be considered essential for the modern readers of the newest electronic media available using the most complete suite of tools available for the research and reading of same. Finally, a bibliographical acknowledgement for the principal locations and sources that provided useful assistance in handling the research requests associated with the volume in question.
Finally a cogent story about surrounding a specific place, event, or person in time which the story develops to its fullest.
Battle of Britain
In With Wings Like Eagles , Michael Korda [does a masterful job of pulling together a wide range of information from both sides of the English Channel that was the place where many aspects of the topic at hand occurred in the late summer of This temporal nexus is called the Battle of Britain. Korda recounts the events leading up to the actual Battle of Britain looking at the development of three separate developments in technology that were to prove absolutely vital to the outcome of the events that are the focal point for the book.
The three technical achievements were the deployment and fine tuning of the new technology of radio detection and ranging, or radar. The technique was an outgrowth of the development of radio, but its purpose was to detect and indicate the distance to an object or objects which were moving around the radar transmitter. The devices used in the story involved the use of large fixed towers that were placed near the location where the signals presented could be interpreted into useful information.
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The selection of women to be used as operators and interpreters was a means of using a human resource that might have been disregarded by others, but the British saw women as a vital part of the war effort. In fact several women were awarded medals and awards for their bravery and disciplined action in the face of enemy fire and imminent destruction. They were tenacious, determined, and seriously contributed to the larger war effort by their duties performed in the radar facilities.
The women were also found to be conspicuously adept at providing the support and technical personnel for the second invention that was the direct result of the radar breakthrough.
This involved the detailed reporting and presentation to decision makers by use of physical maps with markers for various units both British and German, in effect building an everchanging map of each event in a given point in time. These were the first, truly connected operations centers ever developed, and they would become the harbinger of operations centers in the future with modern electronic technology and information coming from all over the planet and beyond.
Women were also a contributing force involved in manufacturing and homeland defense. The third technical development was the development of all-aluminum, monoplane one wingset rather than two, as was the case in World War I with the biplanes that were mostly covered with doped fabric over a mixed medium set of spars and stringers. Light, fast, carrying upwards of 8 machine guns firing from wings mostly, and both were powered by Rolls Royce Merlin engines, soon to be the mainstay of Allied fighter powerplants for many aircraft from many countries of the Allied forces.
Both of these fighters had their own unique characteristics and optimum operating environments. The Spitfires were ideal for mixing with Messerschmitt fighters whereas the Hurricanes were the workhorse to be used against any type of German bomber.
Fall Of Eagles The Evolution Of Air Warfare In World War One
Both the Hurricane and the Spitfire would be built in various equipment and ordnance loadout variants for given situations or theaters of operation. Both were world class fighters which could hold their own against the best the Axis forces could bring to bear. With three technological developments and a force of hardworking committed men and women, the required components were in place, but the leadership that could marshal these resources and use them to the best advantage of each took intrepid leaders.
Korda spends most of his book looking at the various leaders both military and political involved in the proper management and utilization of the equipment and personnel at his command. His plan to provide what was in effect a collapsing box of fighters provided the Germans a merry chase, resulting in more of the enemy aircraft and crews being lost than Allied. This was the case, day after day, week after week until a command decision was made that would effectively change the course of the battle and eventually the course of the war in Europe.
It was a measured use of resources, with planned replacements for planes lost and training programs for pilots who were killed. The idea was to remove more German planes and pilots, proving day in and day out, that the British Islands were too valued to the British people to sacrifice them to the dictatorial rule of the Axis. The result of all this is part of history, and Mr. Korda reflects on the things preserved by the outcome of the Battle of Britain.
The unique set of technical breakthroughs and mastery, the intrepid fearlessness of the British people, and the poor intelligence gathering by the Axis forces led them to overestimate their abilities to cripple the fighters of the RAF. They overestimated the number of planes shot down, crews lost, and airfields put out of service. What happened in the end was a battered country, a resilient people, and a country with the ability to build the aircraft and provide the air crews to fly them that would take the bombing campaign into the home cities of the Axis powers, the industrial plants of the Axis military, and the transportation centers and infrastructure that supported the transportation systems in the Axis held areas of Germany and its neighboring countries that had been captured to be come Axis-held areas.
Recommendations: This work is clearly a 5 out of 5 stars for its accuracy of content, clarity of the inside operations of the British military, particularly the RAF and the Air Ministry, and the cool-headed, intrepid acts that Sir Hugh Dowding performed that kept the Germans guessing and encouraging them to come up to participate in the slow death of the invasion forces of Operation Sea Lion and the pride of the German Luftwaffe in the Axis-controlled countries of the Low Countries and France during the early months of the War in the European Theatre of Operations, before World War II became a reality involving the original Colonies of the Crown in the Western Hemisphere, namely the United States of America.