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The Reich Intruders: Dramatic RAF Medium Bomber Raids Over Europe in World War Two [Hardcover]

Martin Bowman
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Book Description

Sep 1997
Drawing on first-hand accounts, personal diaries, contemporary photographs, squadron albums and other unpublished archive material, this book chronicles 2 Group and 2nd TAF bomber operations from the outbreak of the war through to the final sortie before VE day. 2 Group, initially flying Bristol Blenheims, were among the first British forces on the frontline, and until Germany's surrender, the Venturas, Bostons, Mosquitoes and Mitchells of 2 Group continued operations against rail and road targets. This text details their near suicidal anti-shipping strikes and daylight raids on targets in occupied Europe, including Operation Oyster, the daylight Eindhoven raid in December 1942 on the Philips electronic factory. It also describes the low-level pinpoint attacks made by the 140 Wing, nicknamed the Gestapo Hunters, against key Nazi buildings in Norway, Denmark, Holland, and France, and explains the 2nd TAF's role in the preparation for D-Day, and their strikes in support of the Allied armies. This book completes Martin Bowman's trilogy, which includes "The Men Who Flew the Mosquito" and "Confounding the Reich". Other works by Martin Bowman are "USAF at War", "8th Air Force at War", "Four Miles High", "Flying to Glory" and "B-24 Liberator 1939-45".

Product details

  • Hardcover: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Patrick Stephens Ltd; First Edition edition (Sep 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1852605391
  • ISBN-13: 978-1852605391
  • Product Dimensions: 24.9 x 19.6 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,291,264 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By Brian
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Read this to dispel any doubts about the wisdom of the policy of night area bombing by the RAF. The loss rates experienced on the raids in this book were significantly higher despite the distance into enemy territory being shorter.
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Amazon.com: 3.0 out of 5 stars  1 review
3.0 out of 5 stars Pressure Cooker Attack Unit 30 Dec 2013
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Containing the 'light bomber' squadrons during WW II, 2 Group was the RAF unit that carried out low-level and daylight attacks on Nazi targets. Without strong defensive fire, they depended on surprise and hugging the ground to protect them. It did not always work. They experienced steady losses- tellingly, three Wing Commanders in June 1940, and many more brave crews in years following. Their Blenheims, Bostons and Venturas were vulnerable to the Me 109 defenders. It took Mosquitos to even the odds.
After honing these hit-and-run techniques on ships, plants in occupied cities and Gestapo Headquarters, they joined the Second Tactical Air Force and supported troops sent to free the continent. Their rocket and strafing attacks struck fear in German hearts.
You will be impressed by the number of well captioned photos, yet the text is cramped and jumps from one episode to another:
' ...'We found another Mosquito, which seemed to be going in the same direction as us, so we joined him for the journey home. This was uneventful; we didn't even get shot at over Weert this time. Maybe the Germans didn't consider two aircraft to be worth wasting ammunition on. And besides, we were heading for home.'
---the narration continues:
Arnhem, meanwhile, was being attacked by 107 and 613 Squadrons. Nigel Gilson takes up the story:
'Arnhem identified itself for us--the natives, or their uninvited guests, were distinctly hostile--but we rejoiced in our speed and ploughed in. At first one could watch things quite objectively; one gun team was firing explosive shells, with tantalizing persistency, right on our track, and I wandered absentmindedly by how much they would miss us. Then we dived to attack. I bent to switch on the camera, began to rise, then instinctively ducked again, only to be conscious of an explosion and a shower of perspex splinters. I jerked up, looking anxiously at Phil, and heaved a sigh of relief when I saw that he was OK and that we were climbing--neither of us was quite sure what happened in those 30 seconds....' (p. 163)
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