Skip to comments.French launch bid to rewrite history books w/claim that Lindbergh was NOT first to fly/the Atlantic
Posted on 11/13/2010 5:17:28 AM PST by atomic conspiracy
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Good grief! Can’t believe I did that. Sent the mods a note asking them to change it.
He also flew bomber escort missions in the Pacific and shot down at least one Japanese fighter.
"On September 16, 1944, Lindbergh arrived back in California, having spent almost five months overseas and, at age 42, flown at least 32 combat missions in the hottest fighters of the time."
He had his faults, but I respect his service to our country.
Well, Roger Bannister wasn’t the first guy to run the 4 minute mile either.
This other guy, Frenchman Ted Jogparjour, ran it in 3:59.999 . Granted He only went 2642 feet and he died of a massive coronary before the finish line but he was first!
(I always wondered what the benefit of anchoring the nose of a dirigible a thousand feet above the ground was. Now I know: there was/is no such advantage...)
“During the Pacific War Lindbergh visited a squadron of the USAAF (United States Army Air Force) flying the Lockheed P38 ‘Lightning’ to learn more about the aircraft. Because he was send out as an observer for the Navy to find out more about twin engined fighter aircraft.
The idea of the twin engined fighter wasn’t exactly new, in the mid thirties Dutch builder Fokker issued the G-1 twin engined fighter which in many ways was the direct forefather of the Lightning.
Fokker’s concept was that with two engines and the pilot and guns in a centered pod between the two tail booms was that the armament could be heavier, the aircraft could stay in the air longer and if one engine failed there still was another to continue the flight with. When the war broke out and the Netherlands were invaded by Germany, many of the Royal Dutch Airforce’s G-1’s were destroyed on the ground because of the habit of parking them neatly in a long line across the tarmac, one strafing run would be enough to put an entire squadron out of commission. The G-1’s that DID manage to get airborne however proved themselves to be formidable foes, doing exactly what they were designed to do.
Lindbergh also knew about the Messerschmitt 110 a German twin engined fighter that followed that same concept. But if he truly wanted to know what such aircraft were like to live with he should ask pilots who were easier to find, didn’t need translators and let him try out their planes to see for himself.
Lindbergh listened closely to what the pilots had to say. They loved the tricicle landing gear, it made taxying across the runway such a breeze. ( In a tail wheeled aircraft such as the P47 Thunderbolt you’d have that enormous nose in front of you, blocking the view) They loved how tough it was, it could sustain pretty heavy punishment and still get the air man home. But they had some complaints about the engines being rather thirsty. Lindbergh, who was no stranger to fuel economy in flight thought that one out and suggested that they’d reduce the engine’s RPM’s in flight when not in combat, in doing so they could save out at least 80 gallons a sorty. Lindbergh was proven right, with that flying policy, the pilots of the P38 suddenly could dramatically increasy their flying distance and time they could stay up in the air. At the end of the war, the P38 became the best performing plane in the Paciffic theatre.
And Lindbergh wouldn’t have been Lindbergh if he didn’t fly along one such mission and shot an enemy plane down himself.
But Lindbergh was there for a mission, he was there to gather input on the Navy developing a Twin engined fighter for on aircraft carriers. The contract eventually went to Grumman Aviation and thanks to the p38 pilots and Lindbergh’s own experience they produced the F7f ‘Tigercat.’
‘Tigercat’ like the lightning had tricicle landing gear, was built to survive even the harshest of punishment (which is also why Grumman won the contract, their factory had the nickname ‘Ironworks’ because of the durability of the aircraft they made) and like the Fokker G-1 ten years before, was well armed and used the concept of having two engines to the fullest. Where it differed from the Lightning was in the kind of engines used. The Lightning’s Allison V 12 engine needed a complex super charger to really get the most out of it. Lindbergh figured that a Double Wasp 18 cylinder radial engine would be a far better choice for this kind of plane, since they don’t need a supercharger which saved weight and were much more durable than a V12 inline engine.
However, the F7F Tigercat came too late to play any significant role in the Pacific war.”
Yes I am aware of Nungesser’s wartime history and his accomplishments in the 1920s as a flyer.
I did not disparage his memory, instead I pointed out how the French like to rewrite history to make them look favorable. The part I wrote about the French stating that they really won by surrendering in the early days of WW2, was based on an interview I saw back in the early 1960s. This was later used in the book Catch 22.
Wooly - Thanks for clarifying your earlier comment. That early 60s interview you mentioned is interesting. I wonder how the correspondent involved would have accounted for th French Indochina experience. According to Bernard Fall (Street Without Joy), France as a nation suffered proportionately greater overall losses there than most of the nations that fought in WW2.
... not to lead this thread too far astray.
Yeah, whatever. “Compared to being dead or a paraplegic, it’s better. Some things are assessed in relation to other things.”
Your turn. Nitpick away.
“Yeah, whatever. ‘Compared to being dead or a paraplegic, its better. Some things are assessed in relation to other things.’
Your turn. Nitpick away.”
Like I said, it is not so phrased as to be a comparison to death or being crippled. You are asked to compare walking away to all other landings. And crashing a plane is most certainly NOT “good” compared to not crashing.
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Note: this topic is dated 11/13/2010.
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