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Posted 13 June 2012 - 09:06 AM
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Posted 13 June 2012 - 08:25 PM
Very interesting to see and read the original entries. Regarding these particular CAP patrols these very much sound like what Mike was describing, don't they?
Thank you centurion, that makes interesting reading, and helps fit things into the bigger picture. I understand that even at that stage of the War (end September 1918), and with and end not certain, offensives were still being planned for 1919 by the Allies, although the Germans had started considering an Armistice. Regards, Paul
The NF entries chime with reports from British armoured cars which were penetrating German rear areas at about the same time and seeing large numbers of trains as the Germans attempted to withdraw ammunition, guns and vehicles in the hope of establishing a new defensive line, if only to buy time and provide some sort of bargaining position for the negotiation of a better armistice deal. It looks as if the RAF were flying patrols to hinder this by calling down fire on the trains and possibly doing some shooting up themselves.
Interestingly one can find accounts of the Tactical Air Force involved in doing much the same in 1945 except that Typhoons could do a lot more in the shooting up department.
Posted 13 June 2012 - 08:29 PM
Those are all dated end September / start October Trevor. The airman, George Whitehead, only arrived in France at that time (having spent prior time in the Artillery) and was killed when he was shot down mid-October. Regards, Paul
The CAPs, ie Counter attack patrols, appear to really get going from April 1918. There are half a dozen mentions of them in Cas Reps Aug-Sep-Oct 1917, but may well be "the other sort"! Certainly from April '18 onwards, though, there are about three dozen aircraft reporting casualties in action on these patrols through to the Armistice. Ground fire and combat seem the most cited cause.
So it would be interesting to know the dates of some of your quotes Paul.
Posted 13 June 2012 - 09:07 PM
Posted 13 June 2012 - 09:09 PM
. I understand that even at that stage of the War (end September 1918), and with and end not certain, offensives were still being planned for 1919 by the Allies, although the Germans had started considering an Armistice. Regards, Paul
Posted 14 June 2012 - 08:24 AM
There is the problem of terminology when comparing the use of the 'Counter Attack Patrol' over time. This appears to change even though the role is basically the same. During 1916 the Instructions for 'Contact Patrols' include this task as part of the aeroplanes role on an 'ordinary' Contact Patrol. During 1917 the CAP task is called in documents a 'Special Contact Patrol'. This appears to indicate that a separate aeroplane, apart from the allocated Contact Patrol machines, are undertaking this task. It is only in 1918 (I think the April 1918 document is the first to lay down this title officially although the term may already have been in use) that the term 'Counter Attack Patrol' is used, therefore any losses would only appear under this title then. In 1917 the losses due to undertaking this task would probably be down as Contact Patrols. Of course in later 1918 the Counter Attack Patrol task would probably be almost continuous over the battlefield as the Germans retreated (as would the Contact Patrol keeping the HQs informed of where friendly troops were). Also the aircraft engaged would probably have more opportunity to use their own weapons against the enemy as warfare became more 'open'.
Posted 14 June 2012 - 04:43 PM
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Posted 15 June 2012 - 02:46 PM
lts "neutralisation fire " just to answer the question properly.
Paul and Mike,
These patrol acronyms can be tricky at times.
Context is important. Sometimes unravelling exact meanings of patrol acronyms is very tricky!
Posted 15 June 2012 - 04:25 PM
Posted 15 June 2012 - 04:49 PM