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Most Secret Squadron: The First Full Story of 618 Squadron and its Special Detachment Anti-U-Boat Mosquitos

Most Secret Squadron: The First Full Story of 618 Squadron and its Special Detachment Anti-U-Boat Mosquitos [Kindle Edition]

Des Curtis
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Product Description

Des Curtis was one of the founder members of 618 Squadron. Formed within days of the illustrious 617, 618’s primary objective was to mount a daylight low-level attack by Mosquitos on the German battleship Tirpitz within hours of the attack on the Ruhr dams. The operation, code named Operation Servant, was given top security classification, to the point where the subject was excluded from the minutes of the meetings of the Chiefs of Staff of the air and naval forces. The author reveals the dilemmas and conflicting priorities existing to the highest levels, setting out in detail the technicalities of developing the ‘bouncing bomb’. He also writes first hand about the tactical problems of getting to and from the target; and the tensions and strains endured by the Mosquito crews themselves, as they took the war to the German U-Boats within the sight and safety of their bases.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 28501 KB
  • Print Length: 308 pages
  • Publisher: Grub Street Publishing (28 Mar 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00JBJEG10
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #111,634 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The inside story.......... 19 Oct 2009
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
An excellent book showing the Highball story from 618 squadron's persepctive, with the added bonus of what they did when their original mission was called off.

To get the most from this book I would recommend reading "A hell of a bomb" on the bomb developments of Barnes Wallis which looks at the Highball bomb development in more detail (although lacks insight into some of the technical difficulties Highball encountered which are recounted here) and Guy Gibson's "Enemy Coast Ahead" which not only contrasts 617 squadrons successful technical, planning and execution of their mission with the anti-climaxes 618 encountered, but also highlights what 618 were lined up for when Gibson says that his reaction to finding that their targets were dams was "thank God it's not the Tirpitz" (which 617 squadron later went on to "sink").
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I now know what daddy did in the war 24 Aug 2011
By Groovy
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Bought this for my father who was a member of 618 squadron from it's inception. I read it first to see what he did. My father says it's accurate as far has he remembers and tells the story of the squadron accurately and interestingly.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant 20 Sep 2013
By Garry
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
A grea tread. Very well written with facts that kept me interested all the way through. A must for Mosquito lovers.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The dambusters little brother 7 May 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
We all know the story of 617 Squadron "The Dambusters". This is the story of 618 squadron set up alongside, set up at the same time to attack the Tirpitz with Highball, a smaller version of the bomb used by the Dambusters.

For various reasons that attack was never made, and the squadron then practiced operating Mosquitos of aircraft carriers with a view to attacking Japanese warships. It was then sent to Australia, where the squadron was disbanded.

Because this was a top secret squadron it also brought the 6pdr armed Mosquitos into service.

The story of this squadron is a classic example of a weapon system which it is decided is to top secret to use. A classic study in bungling officials.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Most Secret Squadron 4 April 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I knew a lot about 617 Sq. but not very much about 618, other than they were to use the "Hiball" bouncing bomb.
It made for very interesting reading, would reccomend this book to anyone interested in mossies and their use in WWll.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Most Secret Squadron 1 Dec 2011
This is an amazing story in which the author sets out the story of 618 Squadron RAF from its formation to the end of the war in Europe including a short but fruitless spell in the far east and Australia.

Originally formed to carry a previously untried 'bomb' at the same time as its more well known sister Squadron, 617 Squadron RAF of Dam Buster fame.

The idea was to drop or rather skim, a bouncing bomb over the torpedo net defences of the Tirpitz, a pocket battle ship of the Kriegsmarine hidden away in northern Norway where it was employed harassing the artic convoys.

The story is told extremely well by one of the founder members of the squadron. There are many anecdotes of the life of the crews who were kept somewhat in the dark as to their probable fate by the planners of the original mission coupled with the fact that could not share any misgivings with anyone outside the small 'need to know' circle. After much training and waiting for the right time the planned attack was abandoned since there was no viable escape for the crews once the mission had been completed available.

After the return from the Far East, a special detachment from the squadron was formed as part of Coastal Command and given the job of patrolling the Bay of Biscay in order to deny the Atlantic ports to the U-Boat flotillas of the Kriegsmarine. Fitted with a single 57mm cannon and going under the name 'Tsetse' these aircraft succesfully made life extremely difficult for the U-Boats returning from their Atlantic patrols

The book ends on a happier note for all concerned. It is well written informative and easy to follow with sufficient detail to keep even the most 'nit picky' historian happy added to which U-976, which lies in 50m of water of the coast of Noirmoutier.
The book includes many photographs of the crews, the aircraft and the targets.
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