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Grendel-B
03-21-2004, 08:48 AM
Night of the bombers Ė the most daring special mission of Finnish bombers in WW2


I thougth this might be of interest, as it is quite precisely 60 years from these missions, so I hastily wrote a little article combining material from a few sources.
- Grendel

In February 1944 the long range Soviet bomber command ADD performed three massive air raid on the Finnish capital Helsinki. The enemy bombers came from airfields in the vicinity of Leningrad, where the aerial reconnaissance flights had observed and photographed dozens of aircraft in each field. During the take offs and landings the runways were fully lit and thus offered an excellent bombing target.

Helsinki was well protected against the enemy bombers and the defenses had been very successful against the three major ADD bombing attacks. ADD flew over 2100 sorties and dropped 20 000 bombs against Helsinki, but only 338 bombs (3 %) hit the city area. This was result from the heavy and skillful anti aircraft artillery. Helsinki was actually the heaviest protected capital at Europe, with largest number of heavy AA guns per protected square kilometer. With good radar targeting and special AA tactics most of the Soviet bombers were forced to drop their bomb loads and turn away before reaching target area.

Picture: Third ADD attack 26-27th February 44. Helsinki area is marked on the map with black. Notice how almost all of the Soviet bomber waves turn back before reaching the target.

http://www.ilmatorjuntaupseeriyhdistys.fi/1_98/images/lentokartta.gif

This was not enough, though. Finland had no night fighters and no way to intercept the Soviet bombers before they were almost at the gates. The initiative was completely in the Russian hands. Something different was needed to protect Helsinki and other Finnish towns against the night bombers.

There was something Finland had, though. Bombers, four squadrons of bombers, with experienced pilots. Revenge attacks were out of question Ė Finnish bombers had been forbidden to fly over Leningrad for the whole duration of the war on account of not attacking civilian targets and provoking Soviets. But what about attacking Soviet bombers on their own bases?

Finnish reconnaissance had learned what fields the ADD used, listened the Soviet radio communications and had spied how the Soviet bombers operated. Therefore Finnish intelligence was fully aware on the Soviet tactics.

Keskinen-Stenman:
"On 25th February the air force CO ordered bomber squadrons PLeLv 42 and 46 to attack these bases under suitable conditions. The Russians were to be mislead by the Finnish bombers joining the formations at night over the Gulf of Finland, when returning, say from a mission to Helsinki.

Bomber squadron 46 tested the new tactics on the night of 29th February. Four Dornier Do 17 bombers too off and joined a returning Russian bomber stream over the Gulf of Finland. The bombers flew to Levashovo airfield and invidually bombed the lit airfield at 2230. The bomb rows hit parked aircraft and shelters. Several fires were built up and a strong explosion shook the airfield. The flak opened fire when the Finns were already on their way home."

Each Dornier was equipped with 20 x 50 kg bombs with 0,08 second delay. When the bombers took off and flew towards the Gulf of Finland own AA artillery gave them a goodbye greeting, as they didn't seem to know the identity of the bombers flying in middle of the night.

After joining the Soviet formation it took a lot of skill and nerves to stay in the formation, as the Soviet pilots might recognize the strange looking bombers. After crossing the front lines the Soviet planes turned their navigation lights on, with the Finns following the example. When the bombers arrived to their home field the Finnish pilots kept their place in the landing circuit, circling the Soviet field in middle of the Soviet squadrons, letting the Soviet planes land first. When it was their turn to land the lights of the target airfield shined brightly ahead but instead landing the Finnish planes instead opened their bomb bays, throttled up and filled the field with 80 shrapnel bombs.

Keskinen-Stenman:
"Encouraged by the successes, all regiment squadrons were ordered on March 2nd to participate on large scale attack against Leningrad area airfields.

The opportunity came on March 9th when ADD bombers returned from the bombardment of Tallinn, Estonian's capital. Nineteen Finnish bombers from all four squadrons joined several formations between Seiskari and Kronstadt and followed ADD aircraft to Gorskaya, Levashovo and Kasimovo airfields."

After the huge success of the four bombers the whole bomber regiment was ordered to readiness. It took until March 9th until the weather and other conditions made new attack possible. The four bomber squadrons of Flying Regiment 4 send total of 19 bombers (or 21, depending on source). 10 Blenheims, 5 Dornier Do 17s and 6 Junkers Ju 88s took off.

Once again the bombers infiltrated the Soviet bomber formations. The Blenheims of PLeLv 42 (bomber squadron 42) followed ADD from north of Seiskari.

PLeLv 44 joined the Soviet bombers near Kronstadt fortress island with five Ju-88s.

PLeLv 46 joined the Soviet bombers near Kronstadt with five Dorniers.

And PLeLv 48s Blenheims followed the Soviet bombers from Kronstadt.

Tactics were similar to the previous mission. Either the bombers joined the Soviet formation and flew alongside them, with landing lights on and joining the landing pattern, or the Finns followed slightly behind. Surprise was total both ways, bombs started to rain on the Soviet airfields when the last bombers were still landing or taxiing on the field. Bombs and the shrapnel struck without warning, and the Soviet losses on material and personnel were high, as nobody was sheltered.

Paavo Alava, a Blenheim pilot from Bomber Squadron 42, was on the BL-151 on the attack at March 9th. He describes the mission:
"Our five planes took off with bellies filled with shrapnel- and firebombs. The tension rose in the cockpit when we were over the Gulf of Finland looking for a suitable enemy formation. There they come! Several planes flying at 500 meters east of Seiskari island, flying eastwards. Quick turn and then as silent, as unnoticeably as we can...
I could see clearly how the neighbor's boy sat in his turret, carefree. A small light was on, he must have already dreamed of the coffee waiting on the ground. There they go! Li-2s and so close that I could shoot them with my machinegun. Sure hit! But I must restrain myself Ė the mission would fail if they recognize us. Another Soviet bomber formation comes towards us from east Ė they're going to bomb Tallinn...
Here we were Ė red stars over Gulf of Finland, with blue swastikas in middle of them.
We are over Kronstadt, when the Ruskie planes start flashing signals with red and white lights. We see responding signals from ground. I guess this is permission to come in and land...
The planes turn north towards Gorskaja. It was interesting situation Ė Soviet lead bomber navigates the formation to their home field, which would soon be bombed by enemy bombers flying in the same formation.
There is the field Ė all lights on. Large number of planes are in landing pattern and more in ground, when our four Blenheims dropped the bombers from 1200 meters. Best regards from the people of Helsinki, were the bombardiers thinking. I can see the explosions in the rows of bombers and plane shelters. A huge explosion Ė fuel storage tanks go up in flames and planes are burning on the ground.
This was one of the most successful and cunning missions in the history of our squadron, as everything worked perfectly from the beginning to the end."

Keskinen-Stenman:
"At around 2130 they released the bombs on landing airplanes, parked aircraft and runways, causing huge explosions and numerous fires on all airfields. The attacks came as total surprises and only at Levashovo airfield the AA was on alert, though did not inflict any damage.

The airfield strikes continued on April 4th, when 34 bombers attacked K√¬§hy airfield north-east from Leningrad, where aerial reconnaissance had observed 57 aircraft. Bombs were dropped at 2030 causing huge explosions. 23 large fires were counted by the retreating bombers. Further strikes were flown during May."

Aarno Ylennysm√¬§ki was bombardier in PLeLv 48's Blenheims and flew a mission in 3rd May against yet another Soviet airfield. He describes the mission:
"Vector 270 degrees, five minutes to target, I heard on headphones.
The pilot turned and matched altitude to ordered 2900 meters. Then he pushed throttles forward and accelerated to over 300 km/h. At that speed they'd stay shorter time at the target area at AA fire.
We would be the 2nd last wave. Behind us follows only the big Stukas, Ju-88s, with their 1000 kg bombs. Now I saw the first bomb explosions ahead, from the first bomber wave. I took them as my target and then continued to give more exact commands to the pilot as we approached.
Two degrees left, straight, one right, here we go, straight ahead. I could see a plane row in the light from the other burning planes and the row was running straight on the aiming line of the mechanical bombsight. Then the line, aiming dot and the beginning of the plane row connected and I released the bombs.
The plane wavered as it got lighter and the signal lights came on showing all the bombs had been released successfully. Only now I had time to watch out and noticed the anti-aircraft fire cloudlets around our plane.
Aki, in his turret behind us, was watching downwards when he noticed that a searchlight was trying to find us. He called suddenly "DIVE!". The pilot pushed his stick almost to the instrument panel and the plane dropped quickly almost thousand meters lower. Then he pulled back and leveled the plane at 1500 meters. The G forces pushed us to our chairs at almost three times our normal weight.
A moment later Aki called that a night fighter had flashed past us, just lower. We kept sharp lookout but didn't see it anymore.
The whole regiment returned without losses and also the planes from Onttola base had landed to Immola. The chatter of almost 30 pilots filled the field and it was found out, that an enemy night fighter had followed the bombers to almost Immola. Next day the Commander of the Air Force arrived to the base and awarded number of men"

Mr. Torsten Sannamo was radio operator / gunner at Bomber Squadron 42 in the time of these attacks. He participated in the bombing of K√¬§hy airfield May 3rd 1944. Mr. Sannamo describes his attack:
"Our squadron was the first to arrive to the target. Our bombing altitude was 3100 meters. The enemy AA fire did not reach our altitude, at least on my case, and my pilot Akke dropped the bomb load on the barracks of the enemy base. From my turret I saw several fires coming up.
Our squadron had two groups, both with five planes. Any attacking fighter would have been met with machine gun fire from five guns, but we didn't see any fighters and we landed to our base V√¬§rtsil√¬§ at 2200."

Photo: Mr. Kauko Aho, Blenheim pilot (left) and mr. Torsten Sannamo, gunner & radio operator (right), participated in the attack to K√¬§hy, 3rd May. The gentlemen are photographed at a meeting of Finnish Virtual Pilots Association 2003.
http://www.virtualpilots.fi/hist/kuvat/ww2history-urbanblitz2003-sannamo4t.jpg

Summary

Especially the first attacks at Soviet bomber bases were surprisingly successful. The inventive tactic of joining the formation of the enemy night bombers was unheard of, and the Finnish bombers were not recognized in any mission. The bombers flew in same formation, behind or in middle of enemy bombers, even with the navigational lights on, and at times joined their landing pattern. This allowed the bombers to aim at will and made sure the targets are visible Ė and plentiful. Good intelligence on Soviet numbers and plane positions on the fields helped much.

Soon after the initial missions the aerial reconnaissance noticed, that the Soviet long range bombers, ADD, are moving away from the front fields, either further to the rear or completely disappearing. If ADD was planning further strikes against Finnish targets they never materialized. Perhaps this resulted, at least partly, from the destruction of ADD bombers in their home bases and the possibility of further attacks.

Whatever the results were in larger strategic scale, on tactical level the Finnish bombers performed very well in the missions. The disciplined aircrews from all four Finnish bomber squadrons managed to perform mission, which is quite unique even in the scale of World War II, and definitely the most daring in the history of Finnish bomber command during the war.

Sources used:
Keskinen-Stenman: Suomen Ilmavoimien historia 4 Ė LeR4
Torsten A. Sannamo: Kundina hesassa flygaajana krigussa
Jukka Piipponen: Onttolan punaiset pirut
P. Hirvonen: Raskaan sarjan laivueet

Three different types of bombers participated in the missions, flown by all 4 Finnish bomber squadrons: Blenheims, Dornier Do 17s and Junkers Ju 88s.

(plane drawings Jouni R√¬∂nkk√¬∂. Dornier photo from Yrj√¬∂ Perttula's Collection)
http://www.sci.fi/~ambush/faf/bl201.jpg
http://www.sci.fi/~ambush/faf/dn52_mv.jpg
http://www.sci.fi/~ambush/faf/jk256.jpg

Grendel-B
03-21-2004, 08:48 AM
Night of the bombers Ė the most daring special mission of Finnish bombers in WW2


I thougth this might be of interest, as it is quite precisely 60 years from these missions, so I hastily wrote a little article combining material from a few sources.
- Grendel

In February 1944 the long range Soviet bomber command ADD performed three massive air raid on the Finnish capital Helsinki. The enemy bombers came from airfields in the vicinity of Leningrad, where the aerial reconnaissance flights had observed and photographed dozens of aircraft in each field. During the take offs and landings the runways were fully lit and thus offered an excellent bombing target.

Helsinki was well protected against the enemy bombers and the defenses had been very successful against the three major ADD bombing attacks. ADD flew over 2100 sorties and dropped 20 000 bombs against Helsinki, but only 338 bombs (3 %) hit the city area. This was result from the heavy and skillful anti aircraft artillery. Helsinki was actually the heaviest protected capital at Europe, with largest number of heavy AA guns per protected square kilometer. With good radar targeting and special AA tactics most of the Soviet bombers were forced to drop their bomb loads and turn away before reaching target area.

Picture: Third ADD attack 26-27th February 44. Helsinki area is marked on the map with black. Notice how almost all of the Soviet bomber waves turn back before reaching the target.

http://www.ilmatorjuntaupseeriyhdistys.fi/1_98/images/lentokartta.gif

This was not enough, though. Finland had no night fighters and no way to intercept the Soviet bombers before they were almost at the gates. The initiative was completely in the Russian hands. Something different was needed to protect Helsinki and other Finnish towns against the night bombers.

There was something Finland had, though. Bombers, four squadrons of bombers, with experienced pilots. Revenge attacks were out of question Ė Finnish bombers had been forbidden to fly over Leningrad for the whole duration of the war on account of not attacking civilian targets and provoking Soviets. But what about attacking Soviet bombers on their own bases?

Finnish reconnaissance had learned what fields the ADD used, listened the Soviet radio communications and had spied how the Soviet bombers operated. Therefore Finnish intelligence was fully aware on the Soviet tactics.

Keskinen-Stenman:
"On 25th February the air force CO ordered bomber squadrons PLeLv 42 and 46 to attack these bases under suitable conditions. The Russians were to be mislead by the Finnish bombers joining the formations at night over the Gulf of Finland, when returning, say from a mission to Helsinki.

Bomber squadron 46 tested the new tactics on the night of 29th February. Four Dornier Do 17 bombers too off and joined a returning Russian bomber stream over the Gulf of Finland. The bombers flew to Levashovo airfield and invidually bombed the lit airfield at 2230. The bomb rows hit parked aircraft and shelters. Several fires were built up and a strong explosion shook the airfield. The flak opened fire when the Finns were already on their way home."

Each Dornier was equipped with 20 x 50 kg bombs with 0,08 second delay. When the bombers took off and flew towards the Gulf of Finland own AA artillery gave them a goodbye greeting, as they didn't seem to know the identity of the bombers flying in middle of the night.

After joining the Soviet formation it took a lot of skill and nerves to stay in the formation, as the Soviet pilots might recognize the strange looking bombers. After crossing the front lines the Soviet planes turned their navigation lights on, with the Finns following the example. When the bombers arrived to their home field the Finnish pilots kept their place in the landing circuit, circling the Soviet field in middle of the Soviet squadrons, letting the Soviet planes land first. When it was their turn to land the lights of the target airfield shined brightly ahead but instead landing the Finnish planes instead opened their bomb bays, throttled up and filled the field with 80 shrapnel bombs.

Keskinen-Stenman:
"Encouraged by the successes, all regiment squadrons were ordered on March 2nd to participate on large scale attack against Leningrad area airfields.

The opportunity came on March 9th when ADD bombers returned from the bombardment of Tallinn, Estonian's capital. Nineteen Finnish bombers from all four squadrons joined several formations between Seiskari and Kronstadt and followed ADD aircraft to Gorskaya, Levashovo and Kasimovo airfields."

After the huge success of the four bombers the whole bomber regiment was ordered to readiness. It took until March 9th until the weather and other conditions made new attack possible. The four bomber squadrons of Flying Regiment 4 send total of 19 bombers (or 21, depending on source). 10 Blenheims, 5 Dornier Do 17s and 6 Junkers Ju 88s took off.

Once again the bombers infiltrated the Soviet bomber formations. The Blenheims of PLeLv 42 (bomber squadron 42) followed ADD from north of Seiskari.

PLeLv 44 joined the Soviet bombers near Kronstadt fortress island with five Ju-88s.

PLeLv 46 joined the Soviet bombers near Kronstadt with five Dorniers.

And PLeLv 48s Blenheims followed the Soviet bombers from Kronstadt.

Tactics were similar to the previous mission. Either the bombers joined the Soviet formation and flew alongside them, with landing lights on and joining the landing pattern, or the Finns followed slightly behind. Surprise was total both ways, bombs started to rain on the Soviet airfields when the last bombers were still landing or taxiing on the field. Bombs and the shrapnel struck without warning, and the Soviet losses on material and personnel were high, as nobody was sheltered.

Paavo Alava, a Blenheim pilot from Bomber Squadron 42, was on the BL-151 on the attack at March 9th. He describes the mission:
"Our five planes took off with bellies filled with shrapnel- and firebombs. The tension rose in the cockpit when we were over the Gulf of Finland looking for a suitable enemy formation. There they come! Several planes flying at 500 meters east of Seiskari island, flying eastwards. Quick turn and then as silent, as unnoticeably as we can...
I could see clearly how the neighbor's boy sat in his turret, carefree. A small light was on, he must have already dreamed of the coffee waiting on the ground. There they go! Li-2s and so close that I could shoot them with my machinegun. Sure hit! But I must restrain myself Ė the mission would fail if they recognize us. Another Soviet bomber formation comes towards us from east Ė they're going to bomb Tallinn...
Here we were Ė red stars over Gulf of Finland, with blue swastikas in middle of them.
We are over Kronstadt, when the Ruskie planes start flashing signals with red and white lights. We see responding signals from ground. I guess this is permission to come in and land...
The planes turn north towards Gorskaja. It was interesting situation Ė Soviet lead bomber navigates the formation to their home field, which would soon be bombed by enemy bombers flying in the same formation.
There is the field Ė all lights on. Large number of planes are in landing pattern and more in ground, when our four Blenheims dropped the bombers from 1200 meters. Best regards from the people of Helsinki, were the bombardiers thinking. I can see the explosions in the rows of bombers and plane shelters. A huge explosion Ė fuel storage tanks go up in flames and planes are burning on the ground.
This was one of the most successful and cunning missions in the history of our squadron, as everything worked perfectly from the beginning to the end."

Keskinen-Stenman:
"At around 2130 they released the bombs on landing airplanes, parked aircraft and runways, causing huge explosions and numerous fires on all airfields. The attacks came as total surprises and only at Levashovo airfield the AA was on alert, though did not inflict any damage.

The airfield strikes continued on April 4th, when 34 bombers attacked K√¬§hy airfield north-east from Leningrad, where aerial reconnaissance had observed 57 aircraft. Bombs were dropped at 2030 causing huge explosions. 23 large fires were counted by the retreating bombers. Further strikes were flown during May."

Aarno Ylennysm√¬§ki was bombardier in PLeLv 48's Blenheims and flew a mission in 3rd May against yet another Soviet airfield. He describes the mission:
"Vector 270 degrees, five minutes to target, I heard on headphones.
The pilot turned and matched altitude to ordered 2900 meters. Then he pushed throttles forward and accelerated to over 300 km/h. At that speed they'd stay shorter time at the target area at AA fire.
We would be the 2nd last wave. Behind us follows only the big Stukas, Ju-88s, with their 1000 kg bombs. Now I saw the first bomb explosions ahead, from the first bomber wave. I took them as my target and then continued to give more exact commands to the pilot as we approached.
Two degrees left, straight, one right, here we go, straight ahead. I could see a plane row in the light from the other burning planes and the row was running straight on the aiming line of the mechanical bombsight. Then the line, aiming dot and the beginning of the plane row connected and I released the bombs.
The plane wavered as it got lighter and the signal lights came on showing all the bombs had been released successfully. Only now I had time to watch out and noticed the anti-aircraft fire cloudlets around our plane.
Aki, in his turret behind us, was watching downwards when he noticed that a searchlight was trying to find us. He called suddenly "DIVE!". The pilot pushed his stick almost to the instrument panel and the plane dropped quickly almost thousand meters lower. Then he pulled back and leveled the plane at 1500 meters. The G forces pushed us to our chairs at almost three times our normal weight.
A moment later Aki called that a night fighter had flashed past us, just lower. We kept sharp lookout but didn't see it anymore.
The whole regiment returned without losses and also the planes from Onttola base had landed to Immola. The chatter of almost 30 pilots filled the field and it was found out, that an enemy night fighter had followed the bombers to almost Immola. Next day the Commander of the Air Force arrived to the base and awarded number of men"

Mr. Torsten Sannamo was radio operator / gunner at Bomber Squadron 42 in the time of these attacks. He participated in the bombing of K√¬§hy airfield May 3rd 1944. Mr. Sannamo describes his attack:
"Our squadron was the first to arrive to the target. Our bombing altitude was 3100 meters. The enemy AA fire did not reach our altitude, at least on my case, and my pilot Akke dropped the bomb load on the barracks of the enemy base. From my turret I saw several fires coming up.
Our squadron had two groups, both with five planes. Any attacking fighter would have been met with machine gun fire from five guns, but we didn't see any fighters and we landed to our base V√¬§rtsil√¬§ at 2200."

Photo: Mr. Kauko Aho, Blenheim pilot (left) and mr. Torsten Sannamo, gunner & radio operator (right), participated in the attack to K√¬§hy, 3rd May. The gentlemen are photographed at a meeting of Finnish Virtual Pilots Association 2003.
http://www.virtualpilots.fi/hist/kuvat/ww2history-urbanblitz2003-sannamo4t.jpg

Summary

Especially the first attacks at Soviet bomber bases were surprisingly successful. The inventive tactic of joining the formation of the enemy night bombers was unheard of, and the Finnish bombers were not recognized in any mission. The bombers flew in same formation, behind or in middle of enemy bombers, even with the navigational lights on, and at times joined their landing pattern. This allowed the bombers to aim at will and made sure the targets are visible Ė and plentiful. Good intelligence on Soviet numbers and plane positions on the fields helped much.

Soon after the initial missions the aerial reconnaissance noticed, that the Soviet long range bombers, ADD, are moving away from the front fields, either further to the rear or completely disappearing. If ADD was planning further strikes against Finnish targets they never materialized. Perhaps this resulted, at least partly, from the destruction of ADD bombers in their home bases and the possibility of further attacks.

Whatever the results were in larger strategic scale, on tactical level the Finnish bombers performed very well in the missions. The disciplined aircrews from all four Finnish bomber squadrons managed to perform mission, which is quite unique even in the scale of World War II, and definitely the most daring in the history of Finnish bomber command during the war.

Sources used:
Keskinen-Stenman: Suomen Ilmavoimien historia 4 Ė LeR4
Torsten A. Sannamo: Kundina hesassa flygaajana krigussa
Jukka Piipponen: Onttolan punaiset pirut
P. Hirvonen: Raskaan sarjan laivueet

Three different types of bombers participated in the missions, flown by all 4 Finnish bomber squadrons: Blenheims, Dornier Do 17s and Junkers Ju 88s.

(plane drawings Jouni R√¬∂nkk√¬∂. Dornier photo from Yrj√¬∂ Perttula's Collection)
http://www.sci.fi/~ambush/faf/bl201.jpg
http://www.sci.fi/~ambush/faf/dn52_mv.jpg
http://www.sci.fi/~ambush/faf/jk256.jpg

Haaskalintu
03-21-2004, 09:15 AM
Very interesting read http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/16x16_smiley-happy.gif Thank you

FW190fan
03-21-2004, 09:59 AM
The Finns never cease to amaze me.

http://people.aero.und.edu/~choma/lrg0645.jpg

p1ngu666
03-21-2004, 04:34 PM
http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/16x16_smiley-surprised.gif

http://www.pingu666.modded.me.uk/mysig3.jpg

tfu_iain1
03-21-2004, 05:54 PM
thats guts... real david and goliath stuff. ive always been impressed how finland resisted the soviets, despite insane industrial and manpower odds.

Grendel-B
03-22-2004, 01:05 AM
punt

Lindgren
03-22-2004, 01:26 AM
Thanks Grendel, I was thinking to make a post on the very same subject. Glad you did it first since you had much better data than I did.

Lindgren

necrobaron
03-22-2004, 01:29 AM
I too never cease to be impressed by Finland's feats in WWII. Great stuff....

Btw,what does ADD mean?

"Not all who wander are lost."

mattinen
03-22-2004, 01:36 AM
Helsinki tosiaan selvisi hienosti NL:n ilmahy√¬∂kk√¬§yksist√¬§, mutta voidaanko t√¬§m√¬§n katsoa johtuneen pelk√¬§st√¬§√¬§n hyvin j√¬§rjestetyst√¬§ ilmatorjunnasta? Voisiko neuvostolent√¬§jien taidoilla ja "ty√¬∂moraalilla" olla my√¬∂s osansa asiassa? Jos Helsinkiin olisi hy√¬∂kk√¬§nyt vaikkapa Bomber Command, niin olisiko ilmatorjunta fosforiammuksineen saanut valtaosan lent√¬§jist√¬§ pudottamaan pommit mereen ja k√¬§√¬§ntym√¬§√¬§n pois?

Grendel-B
03-22-2004, 02:02 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by necrobaron:

Btw,what does ADD mean?
"<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Aviatsiya Dalnego Destviya - ADD
=
Long Range Bomber Command

Mattinen,

Yes, AA had everything to do with defence of Helsinki. Without it there would have been nothing to force the Soviet bombers back. No, RAF Bomber Command wouldn't have turned away.

Teufel_Eldritch
03-22-2004, 02:07 AM
I mean no deservice to the Finns but that makes me laugh. They sure did have balls didnt they? Takes some real hutzpah to do that. The Finns that did that the first time must have been laughing their butts off when they got home.

&lt;S!&gt; to the tricky, clever, & downright smart Finns.

YANKEE ROSE
-----------
"For a world of happiness & equality is but a fantasy driven by men who envy the ruling class."

mattinen
03-22-2004, 02:37 AM
Mattinen,

Yes, AA had everything to do with defence of Helsinki. Without it there would have been nothing to force the Soviet bombers back. No, RAF Bomber Command wouldn't have turned away.[/QUOTE]

Kyll√¬§, selv√¬§√¬§h√¬§n se on, ett√¬§ ilman ilmatorjuntaa olisivat pommit pudonneet Helsinkiin. Tarkoitin vain sit√¬§, ett√¬§ sama ilmatorjunta olisi todenn√¬§k√¬∂isesti saavuttanut selv√¬§sti heikommat tulokset, jos hy√¬∂kk√¬§√¬§j√¬§n lentotaidot ja taistelumoraali olisi ollut RAF:n tai USAAF:n tasolla. Mielest√¬§ni Helsingin ilmatorjuntaa arvioitaessa on ainakin jossain m√¬§√¬§rin huomioitava my√¬∂s hy√¬∂kk√¬§√¬§j√¬§n taso.

LeLv28_Masi
03-22-2004, 03:03 AM
T√¬§ytyy huomoida my√¬∂s nk. vale Hels√¬*nki ym. muut harhautukset.

Kaikki kunnia Helsingin ilmapuolustukselle.

Turha jossitella kuinka olisi k√¬§ynyt RAAF tai USAAF pommituksissa, kaikki sen tiet√¬§√¬§ millainen tuhovoima niill√¬§ lautoilla oli.

Mutta oisikohan heid√¬§nk√¬§√¬§n moraali ollut niin korkea pommittaa pienen Suomen p√¬§√¬§kaupunkia?

Mave_FI
03-22-2004, 03:06 AM
Hmm, I'll update this thread with more information if I can find some... I have the books "Kolmen Sodan Pommittajat" (Pommituslentolaivue 42:n sotataival 1940-1944) and "Finnish Air Force - Bomber Squadron 42", my grandfather was the leader of the second flight in Bomber Squadron 42 for some time during the war, sad that he's dead already and I cannot get any first hand information...

Edit: One typo fixed and please guys, try to keep this conversation in English... http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

Mave
Jagdgeschwader 55 - "Lufthunden"
www.lufthunden.com (http://www.lufthunden.com)

masamainio
03-22-2004, 03:13 AM
There were fires set up to give impression of a burning city 5 to 10 km east of Helsinki. Russians dropped more bombs there in the woods than in the city.

Mave_FI
03-22-2004, 03:24 AM
Those fires were at Vuosaari, the place where I live now... http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

Mave
Jagdgeschwader 55 - "Lufthunden"
www.lufthunden.com (http://www.lufthunden.com)

Ankanor
03-22-2004, 04:16 AM
If I am not mistaken, the russians also did that, but only twice and with individual bombers, during the bombings of Moscow in July 1941.
As to the Finns, yeah, those pilots really had strong nerves.
http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/11.gif http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/11.gif http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/11.gif http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/11.gif http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/11.gif http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/11.gif http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/11.gif http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/11.gif http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/11.gif

O, how I want to hold you,
To feel your breath
And hear your laughter in my ears.
To look into your eyes
And see myself in there.
Caress you with my lips.
To hold your hands in mine
And find the hidden smile in your dimple
That makes you irresistible
And stops the breathing in my chest.
To be with you when you are weeping,
To wipe away the tears and take away the sorrow.
To watch you while you are sleeping
Like there is no tomorrow.

And with a tender kiss to wake you up.

Essen,23.02.2004 20:53

Mave_FI
03-22-2004, 04:31 AM
Hehe...

Wondering what whine that tactic would cause on some no-icons dogfight-server http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

Mave
Jagdgeschwader 55 - "Lufthunden"
www.lufthunden.com (http://www.lufthunden.com)

mattinen
03-22-2004, 05:30 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by LeLv28_Masi:
T√¬§ytyy huomoida my√¬∂s nk. vale Hels√¬*nki ym. muut harhautukset.

Kaikki kunnia Helsingin ilmapuolustukselle.

Turha jossitella kuinka olisi k√¬§ynyt RAAF tai USAAF pommituksissa, kaikki sen tiet√¬§√¬§ millainen tuhovoima niill√¬§ lautoilla oli.

Mutta oisikohan heid√¬§nk√¬§√¬§n moraali ollut niin korkea pommittaa pienen Suomen p√¬§√¬§kaupunkia?<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Helsingin ilmapuolustus ansaitsee tosiaankin kaiken sen kunnian, mik√¬§ sille on annettu, ja varmaan viel√¬§ hieman enemm√¬§nkin. V√¬§lill√¬§ tuntuu vain syntyv√¬§n sellainen vaikutelma, ett√¬§ Helsingin ilmatorjunassa olisi ollut jotain sellaista aivan erityist√¬§, joka nimenomaan olisi pelastanut Helsingin tuholta verrattuna Keski-Euroopan kaupunkeihin. Jos siis esim. Berliiniss√¬§ olisi vain ymm√¬§rretty ottaa k√¬§ytt√¬∂√¬∂n Helsingin menetelm√¬§t, olivat sakut saattaneet s√¬§√¬§st√¬§√¬§ ison joukon rakennuksia.

Helsingin ilmatorjunta selvisi hienosti, mutta ei mielest√¬§ni pelk√¬§st√¬§√¬§n omasta ansiostaan, vaan my√¬∂s siksi, ett√¬§ vastustajan taso oli ilmeisen heikko ven√¬§j√¬§n liittolaisiin verrattuna.

RAF:lla ja USAAF:lla jossittelu on tietenkin turhaa, mutta ne on syyt√¬§ mainita, kun arvioidaan toisaalta Helsingin ilmatorjunnan ja toisaalta hy√¬∂kk√¬§√¬§j√¬§n ja sisun merkityst√¬§ kaupungin ilmapuolustuksen onnistumiselle. Olettaisin, ett√¬§ jonkin kohteen ilmapuolustuksen onnistuminen riippuu aina sek√¬§ ilmatorjunnan ett√¬§ hy√¬∂kk√¬§√¬§j√¬§n tasosta.

Kyll√¬§ Bomber Commandin lent√¬§jien moraali varmasti olisi kest√¬§nyt hy√¬∂kk√¬§√¬§misen Helsinkiin, eih√¬§n heille tuottanut suurtakaan tuskaa pudottaa pommejaan siviilikohteisiin Saksassakaan. Tuskin Suomen pieni koko olisi Helsinki√¬§ pelastanut, Suomihan oli Saksan liittolainen.

Leech_
03-22-2004, 05:58 AM
Very interesting thread. If you guys could keep it in english so that the non-finnish users would not be bored away.

Cheers,
Leech / Lufthunden
www.lufthunden.com (http://www.lufthunden.com)

Buster82
03-22-2004, 09:02 AM
I have nothing but respect for the Finns

Curly_109
03-22-2004, 09:13 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by FW190fan:
The Finns never cease to amaze me.

http://people.aero.und.edu/~choma/lrg0645.jpg <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Me too... they're quite a nation http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/59.gif

cheerz

clover4
03-22-2004, 09:45 AM
An amazing and courageous tactic by the men of the Finnish Air Force.
Thanks for a Great read! http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

*S*Clover4

Cold_Gambler
03-22-2004, 09:51 AM
Great read!
Very clever (and risky) strategy indeed!
thanks for posting http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

DynamicBass
03-22-2004, 10:16 AM
I am always impressed by the feisty Finns and their WW2 achievements!! http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/11.gif

Great read!! - Keep stories like that comming!

masamainio
03-22-2004, 04:47 PM
http://www.elknet.pl/acestory/foto/kahla1.jpg

"Paavo Kahla - Piloted by a Dead Man.

Written by Ossi Juntunen .

Finnish Fokker C.X's crew on positions. In text is findable a snap of story hero, not fighter pilot this time, but brave observer-gunner: Lt. Kahla. There is also snap of crashed Kahla's Fokker."

http://www.elknet.pl/acestory/kahla/kahla.htm

SwingerSpecial
03-22-2004, 06:25 PM
Hey, we're almost missing the other juicy story here, about the tactics that the AAA gunners employed.

The "special tactics" that Grendel referred to when talking about the Helsinki air defense, consisted of two elements. A) "Night grenades", basically AA shells that had a dash of magnesium/aluminium powder added to them for a flashbang effect B) The defense was based on a system of "blockade fire" rather than tracking individual planes with the hopes of shooting them down. Firing sectors, or "rings" that started 4 km from the city center and extended out every 2 km all the way to 16 km were created. All the batteries had pre-calculated coordinates for these rings, so that all the fire control HQ had to order was the number of firing sector & altitude. Each gun would fire 4 shots, and with 4 guns per battery and a few batteries firing at the same coordinates at the same time... well, you can imagine what it looks like at the receiving end, ESPECIALLY with those night grenades. A lot of the pilots would just dump their bombs and head back out to the sea.

Kampfmeister
03-22-2004, 09:45 PM
Excellent topic, thank you. You've just gotta love those feisty Finn's. I've been fascinated by the Finn's and their military exploits ever since I was a boy when I read a book about the Winter War. You certainly don't get a very good impression of the Russian bombers and their crews though, do you?

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I thought I read once, where the Germans tried the same thing using He-177's. I'm not sure if they were following British night bombers home or American daylight raiders. Can't remember if it was successful or not. Has anyone else ever heard about this?

JG52_wunsch
03-22-2004, 11:45 PM
great read,thx for the history lesson,cheers

After it was refeuled i climbed in.With many manipulations the mechcanics started the turbines.I followed their actions with the greatest of interest.The first one started quite easily.the second caught fire.In no time the whole engine was on fire.Luckily as a fighter pilot i was used to getting quickly out of the cockpit.The fire was quickly put out.The second plane caused no trouble - Adolf Galland (first time in a ME262)

Mave_FI
03-23-2004, 12:29 AM
Hmm, got to go and see that "Special exhibition" at Finnish Aviation Museum, that exhibition is about Aerial defence in Helsinki -44

Mave
Jagdgeschwader 55 - "Lufthunden"
www.lufthunden.com (http://www.lufthunden.com)

SheerLuckHolmes
03-23-2004, 12:49 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Kampfmeister:

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I thought I read once, where the Germans tried the same thing using He-177's. I'm not sure if they were following British night bombers home or American daylight raiders. Can't remember if it was successful or not. Has anyone else ever heard about this?<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I think it was mentioned in Ernst Heinkels book.
They bombed USAF-bombers that made so-called SHUTTLE BOMBING missions... they started from Italy, bombed Romania and landed in russian fields. Dunno for sure how effective these German-made bombing missions were in truth, but HEinkel himself describes that they were the main reason USAF stopped these missions. I think it was mentioned that USAF lost even over 100 bombers. Tactics Luftwaffe used was same used by finns.
But then in USAF's articles main reason they ended these kind of missions was that Russians were not willing to refuel us-bombers and escorting fighters. Correct me if I'm wrong http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

SheerLuck Holmes

mattinen
03-23-2004, 01:29 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Curly_109:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by FW190fan:
The Finns never cease to amaze me.

http://people.aero.und.edu/~choma/lrg0645.jpg <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Me too... they're quite a nation http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/59.gif

cheerz<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Yes, and all this without the Nato-membership!

Grendel-B
03-23-2004, 01:45 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>
I think it was mentioned in Ernst Heinkels book.
They bombed USAF-bombers that made so-called SHUTTLE BOMBING missions... they started from Italy, bombed Romania and landed in russian fields. Dunno for sure how effective these German-made bombing missions were in truth, but HEinkel himself describes that they were the main reason USAF stopped these missions. I think it was mentioned that USAF lost even over 100 bombers. Tactics Luftwaffe used was same used by finns.
But then in USAF's articles main reason they ended these kind of missions was that Russians were not willing to refuel us-bombers and escorting fighters. Correct me if I'm wrong http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Yes, the German bomber attack on the USAAF bases on Russian soil were very effective, and the biggest reason why the shuttle attacks were stopped. No, there was no problem with refueling etc, they had own mechanics etc. But they simply lost large number of bombers on ground as the Soviets didn't have early warning system.

The tactics Luftwaffe used in this attack were not similar to the attack I described in the initial posting.

Luftwaffe had one recon plane shadowing the USAAF bombers and made note of the fields they landed to.

After that the bombers came. I don't recall if the attack was in daylight or night. But it was more like a normal airfield attack, just in way massive scale, against very vulnerable target. The bombers themselves didn't shadow the USAAF bomber formation.

SheerLuckHolmes
03-23-2004, 03:20 AM
Yes... correct... I phoned to my friend who owns the book and all you said was right. Raids happened during night time. And allied losses were around 200 to 300 planes.

Regards

SheerLuck Holmes