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questions :Polish Air Force and Royal Air Force 303th Squadron in the British Air War
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[Member (365WT)]answers [Chinese ]Time :2019-11-06
Simply explain this battle background:
The prerequisite for Germany's landing in the British Isles is the German Air Force's occupation of the airspace over the English Channel and the UK (at least over the southeast coast of the UK). The Royal Air Force has become a pioneer in defending the country and fighting the aggressors..However, their strength, especially the strength and responsibility of the fighter forces that bear the main defensive duties, is totally incomparable (at the end of June 1940, the RAF had about 650 fighters and 460 bombers, and only the German Air Force first-line combat aircraft (bombers, fighters). In the first half of the most intense fighting in early August, there are only more than 700 fighters. The objective advantage they can rely on is only the advantage of the home court and the advanced aviation industry: First, the fire-breathing is equivalent to the Bf 109E, although the performance of the hurricane is Slightly inferior, but the German bomber and twin-engine fighters in the face of the attack can still play well (later RAF's tactics are specifically to bomb the bomber, ignore the German fighters, anyway, the short short leg Bf 109E destructive power and voyage are limited,I can't wait for a long time without oil, I know I will go back.),Second, the radar-based air defense early warning system means that the defender can target and efficiently intercept...
In terms of personnel quality, the training level of British pilots is not inferior to that of the Germans, but the actual combat experience is obviously a lot worse. In the first phase of the British air war (from early July to September 6), the German Air Force bombed the RAF airport and base with the aim of destroying the British Air Force. The commander of Admiral Ding Ding was once overwhelmed and suffered heavy casualties. The new pilots who come in can't keep up with the speed of loss. Don't say that a lot of people are quick-released products with compressed training time. In this context, pilots from exile countries such as Poland, France, and the Czech Republic In fact, the experience of war is exactly what the UK needs.
At first, Dao Ding and his sons of the British Empire were skeptical about the power of the Poles. Ding Ding once refused to use Polish pilots, and John Kent’s initial impression of the Polish Air Force was also very representative. He said in his memoirs: “I know that the Polish Air Force only took the German Air Force to stop the food for three days. So, I have no reason to think that they can do anything bigger by changing the battlefield to the UK."
Even the commander-in-chief of the fighter unit and the squadron commander of the 303th squadron in the future are still the same. The attitudes and impressions of other British pilots can be imagined. Many of them have a certain prejudice and superiority to the foreign pilots under the fence. It is undeniable and difficult to understand, and it is very obvious in the movie. But the Poles quickly proved that the British were wrong with practical actions.
At the beginning, the Polish pilots were also dispersed into a number of RAF fighter squadrons. As early as July, they flew into the air. On July 19th, the first squad was performed by the squadron of Antonioi Ostowicz. He and the 145th squadron teammates worked together to kill a He 111 bomber over Brighton. Unfortunately, he became the first Polish pilot to die in August 11. . On August 24th, Sergeant Antoni Glowacki of the 501st Squadron played three times and returned to the fruitful results of the five German bombers. He also became the only three-listed ace of the British Air War. As mentioned earlier, RAF combatants are extremely short. Polish pilots are frequently mobilized between squadrons as needed. Nearly 100 Polish fighter pilots have left footprints in 27 RAF squadrons before the formation of a dedicated Polish squadron.
The Polish pilots were well-educated before the war and basically had French, so it was no problem to disperse the squadrons of the French Air Force. But when they arrived in the UK, everyone was forced. Sometimes the pilots of the two countries had to communicate in French. If the language barrier is only on the ground If it is inconvenient, the air that needs to be formed into a battle will seriously hinder communication and coordination, and directly affect the victory and defeat and life and death. Dawdin and others quickly realized that the scattered foreign pilots will gather together to form a special foreign squadron. The necessity of (Poland, Czech Republic). For the British side, this not only solves the problem of language barriers within the squadron, but also eliminates the differences in tactical concepts and greatly improves the operational efficiency..It is more convenient for the Polish government in exile and the army to record their own history of war...
On July 22nd, the 303th Squadron was born in this context. It is the second Polish fighter squadron in the Royal Air Force after the 302 squadron, and the 4th Polish squadron (the first two are bomber squadrons), August 2 At the start of the Noord Air Force Base, just 10 kilometers northwest of London, equipped with hurricane fighters. On August 2, when the squadron was stationed in Nosault, there were 13 officers and 143 sergeants of all ranks (including ground handling), and about 30 others remained in Blackpool City in the northwest of England. Squadron leader Ronald Kellett and B squad leader Stanhope Forbes are British. Captain A. John Kent is a Canadian. Sergeant Franzisch is a Czech with 37 Polish pilots.
At that time, the selection principle for the formation of these Polish squadrons was to bring together the pilots who served in the same unit before the war, to maximize the morale, the sense of honor and cohesiveness of the troops, and the meaning of rebirth, such as Most of the pilots of the 303th Squadron came from the 111th and 112th squadrons of the 39th Deportation Brigade in Warsaw, so the honorary name of the Royal Air Force was "Warsaw", and the 302nd squadron was named "Poznan". .
In view of Ding Ding's attitude and temper, the Polish pilots, in addition to learning English well, have to accept the thorough reinvention of the temper, in order to open a "very complex and advanced" British aircraft..As the film shows, they must be accustomed to using English units mile, gallons, instead of metric units in the past, liters; refueling to push the throttle forward; landing the landing gear must be put down (Polish old-fashioned aircraft They are all fixed landing gears, refueling the throttle valve.) The second lieutenant of Wladyslaw Rozycki of the 238th Squadron wrote after breaking the plane and forgetting to drop the plane: "This happened a very embarrassing and unpleasant thing. In the first flight of my eleven years, I broke a plane for the first time, not to mention being broken in a foreign country. It is even more uncomfortable."..
In addition, the 302th and 303th squadron pilots also rode into a formation team on a pedal tricycle equipped with radio, speedometer and compass, and circled around the airport in a circle. These basic trainings are unbearable for many Polish pilots who have combat experience and want to fight against the enemy. In the words of Zumbach's memoirs, "British people are wasting our time in taking their pupils' classes! Can hang their wing!"
For a long time, Zumbach took the lead in doing things and gathered his companions to discuss this "primary school curriculum that wasted our time." As a result, a group of people were slammed back by Kent’s words. However, Kent was also frustrated by this group of highly arrogant Poles.

Throughout August, the British air battles have been in full swing, and the climax has been repeated. The 303th squadron still follows the order and stays in Nosault for training. One of the reasons is that the English level of Polish pilots during radio calls is not recognized by the squadron commander Major Kellett.
On August 30th, the transfer took place. On the afternoon of the afternoon, six hurricanes took off from Nosolt under the leadership of Kellett and simulated the air combat with the Blenheim bomber. After 20 minutes, Lieutenant Ludwik Paszkiewicz found "about 60 German bombers, fighters and British fighters "have not been able to fight near Hatfield. Paszkiewicz did not receive a reply after reporting to the squadron leader - at least he explained this later, he left the formation, accelerated to fly to help, all the way regardless of Kellett The order to return was only to say that the radio was faulty. Finally, he successfully shot down one enemy plane, and the rest of the squadron escorted Blenheim to Ron to return to Nosort. Paszkiewicz naturally slammed a reprimand and got a Congratulations on his opening record.After this battle, Major Kellett pushed the boat and declared that the 303 squadron could be put into combat. The situation of the fighter headquarters was already very serious at this time, and Ding Ding was naturally approved...
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Since then, the 303 squadron has been beaten up by the governor, playing the wind and water, and the news has been repeated. In the past 6 weeks, it has claimed to shoot down 126 enemy aircraft, ranking first among all RAF fighter squadrons participating in the British air combat. 1. The price is that nine pilots were killed, including the Czech Sergeant Frantisek. The cause of death is now unclear, estimated to be caused by combat fatigue (this war is too intense and too strong). The Polish pilot is in a The brutal and fierce airstrikes showcased superb skills, rich practical experience and fearless fighting spirit, which made the British comrades look at each other..For example, in air combat, Polish fighter pilots often approached the enemy aircraft until they could not fire for a small distance. This is absolutely crazy in the eyes of British pilots...
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Including 303 squadron players, a total of 145 Polish pilots participated in the British air battle, claiming to shoot down 203.5 German aircraft and 29 people killed. According to the Royal Air Force's total record and the official data of the German war damage, the number of shots fell. About 100~130 or so. Regardless of the exact number geometry, the contribution of the Poles in the British air battle is unquestionable, not to mention that some credit cannot be measured by data..In this regard, the most convincing comment came from General Hugh Dawdin, the father of the Fighter Command. He later praised: "If there is no great courage and outstanding contribution from the Polish Squadron, I dare not say that this battle will have Now this same ending," but the most interesting is Dawdin's comment on the 303th Squadron pilot: "very brave, but completely undisciplined", but also a group of "great fighters"..
Throughout World War II, the Polish Air Force in Exile had a total of 15 squadrons in the UK, including 8 fighter squadrons, 4 bomber squadrons, and 14,000 pilots and crew members. They formed a The important anti-fascist forces that were ignored by later generations were counted as those who were scattered in the British and American troops but not in the Polish squadron. The Polish pilots fought bravely and fought all over Western Europe, Germany and North Africa and Italy. The victory of the military has made a huge contribution, and it has also paid a huge price..There is still a monument to the Polish Air Force at Nosert Airport. It is engraved with the name of 2408 fallen soldiers and a simple inscription: "I have fought for justice, I ended my voyage, I have kept my faith." ...
[Member (365WT)]answers [Chinese ]Time :2019-11-06
The story begins with the Polish Air Force on the eve of World War II.
In the summer of 1939, the situation in Europe was overcast, and the Polish army (whether the Army or the Air Force) was prepared for the German invasion. In late August, about a week before the outbreak of the war, the Polish Air Force began the adaptation and deployment of the wartime state. The German-Polish border fighters were evacuated to the interior, and a large number of scattered fighter teams were integrated into the squadron and assigned to the Army. A field army to strengthen the coordination of land and air. There are also five fighter squadrons that are usually compiled into a single eviction brigade, dedicated to defending the capital Warsaw. The 111th and 112th squadrons of this brigade are the predecessors of the 303 Squadron.
Therefore, contrary to the public's impression, when the war broke out, the main force of the Polish Air Force was not wiped out by the German Air Force and was not bombed at the airport. The reason why the public would have the opposite impression was originally caused by the German propaganda department. Even many British and French people believe that the Polish Air Force is vulnerable. Therefore, before the British air battle, the British people doubted the ability of the Polish pilots...) Although the aircraft performance was poor for the entire generation of the Germans, the Polish Air Force shot down more than 100 German aircraft.
On the ground, the Polish army faced the German armored torrents and retreated to the east. They could only rely on forests and swamps to delay the rapid advancement of the enemy. The Polish Air Force was forced to continue to change and could not form effective combat power. They had expected the pre-war The purchase of a number of advanced fighters (including the British-made hurricane fighters) through the then neutral Romania can help them to compete with the German Air Force, but after the Soviet Union made a knife from the east on September 17, such hopes were also shattered. The next day, the surviving Polish Air Force was ordered to withdraw to Romania and Hungary to preserve the vitality.
But this is only the beginning of a long road to exile, and then they tried to escape to France. From October 1939 to April 1940 before the start of the French campaign, a total of about 8,500 Polish Air Force personnel gathered in France. Most of the personnel arrived by boat. Some old-fashioned two-wing fighters simply stayed in Romania. ...
In accordance with the agreement between the British and French to help the Polish army rebuild, the Polish Air Force bomber personnel went to the United Kingdom for training, and the fighter forces were trained in France. Due to the limited equipment available in France, some Polish fighter pilots also went to the UK to stand by, the first batch of people in 1939. Arrived in the UK in December. About 174 Polish pilots were incorporated into the French Air Force combat force and participated in the French campaign (May 10-June 22, 1940). The two male protagonists Zumbach and Urbanowicz belong to the two. Situation. Urbanowicz took a boat from France to Marseille as early as January 1940, while Zumbach opened MS in the French Air Force..The 406 and Hawker 75 fighters met the Germans and were shot down by the German Me 109 fighters, but fortunately escaped the captured fate. After the French defeat on June 18th, he was evacuated to the UK by boat. A dramatic adaptation, he disguised as a Swiss watch merchant mixed into the German airport (accurately the French army stationed by the Germans), and then stole a French army plane under the eyes of the German Air Force, especially the end of the control He drove back to France in a hurricane, and he made a triumphant move on the head of the German Air Force officer who had put him on the horse. It was very proud. Why is it disguised as a Swiss watch merchant? Zumbach is indeed a Swiss citizen who joined the Polish Air Force. I also smuggled my watch after the war...
The Polish pilots demonstrated their unyielding fighting will in the French campaign. The Frenchman once gave the poor performance of C.714 to the Polish fighter squadron 145 squadron. The wood aircraft produced by the Goldlon-Renault company was seriously underpowered. It was not flexible at all. The opponent of the high-speed Bf 109E, but the Polish pilot drove it with a powerful enemy to fight desperately and stubbornly. Even after the French war department ordered the C714 to retreat, the GC I/145 squadron insisted on using it because there was no substitute, and the casualties and losses suffered during it were self-evident. During the entire French campaign, Polish pilots obtained an official record of shooting down 52 enemy planes, and 13 of them were killed.
It is a pity that their combat experience and skills have not been used by France. On the whole, they are rushed and equipped in France, and the number of participants is only 20% of the available strength of the Polish Air Force! The French campaign was soon ended with the fiasco of the coalition, the surrender of the Netherlands, Belgium and France. The Polish Air Force personnel once again embarked on the road to escape, and some fled to the southern and western ports of France, such as Marseille and La Rochelle. Escaped to the French colonies of North Africa, as well as to Portugal and Spain..They have different routes but have the same goal - as of the end of July 1940, a total of 8,384 Polish Air Force personnel had arrived in the UK, and more than 6,220 of them arrived in the month from June 22 to late July. That is to say, they insisted on the last battle in the French campaign...
Across the shallow English Channel, Britain was the only European country that had not yet surrendered to the Nazis, and the only country in the world that could provide the Polish exiled army to fight against the Germans. She was called by the Poles as "the last hope." island". The British Air War has indeed become a highlight moment for Polish pilots to shine.

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