1937 Attack Aviation

Unless you’ve got 20 minutes to kill, you can skip this.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Boxgz0HU3w]

On the otter heiney, a couple random th0ughts.

Notice the casual acceptance that chemical weapons would be used. It was simply assumed the other guys would use them, and then so would we. The German and Italian decision to not use chemical weapons meant we and our Allies in World War II also withheld them.  We did, however, stockpile chemical weapons overseas just in case. That was not always a happy decision.

Not sure how wild I’d be about being the rear gunner on a plane spraying liquid toxic chemicals.

All you Jade Helm nutbags, also, please note that the Army divided parts of Alabama into Red and Blue, which in those days, Red meant “Hostile.” Even after doing so, they didn’t really bomb and gas Anniston.

Strategic bombardment was the First Family of the Army Air Corps in the late 1930s. It’s something of a toss up, but I’d argue that Attack came in second, with Pursuit (that is, Fighter) aviation coming in third.

The Army Air Forces wouldn’t really receive a viable attack aircraft until the Douglas A-20 Havoc entered service. The A-20 took a roundabout way of entering US service. Originally designed for the AAC, no orders were placed. But the French, seeing war on the horizon, were impressed and placed an order for 100. Only about 60 had been delivered to the French before their collapse in the face of the German Blitzkrieg. Seeing the success of the plane, the Army Air Forces bought large numbers. By that time, in spite of its “A” for Attack designation, it was recognized for what it really was, a light bomber, and the units it equipped were Bombardment squadrons.

5 thoughts on “1937 Attack Aviation”

  1. Given the 8th AF demands for fighter escort, I’d say the P-shooters got a higher priority. P-47 were also used as Attack craft as well, particularly after the P-51 was available in large enough numbers to completely assume the fighter escort role. IIRC, the TACs had the P-47 as their primary aircraft.

    1. That 8AF demand for long range escort was *after* the Bomber Command discovered just how appalling losses of unescorted raids were. Prior to 1943, the strategic bomber crowd simply assumed they would be able to operate unescorted.

    2. The assumption was made because they bought Douhet’s myth that the bomber would always get through. The 8th was crying for long range fighters before 1942 was out.

    1. Uh, yeah?

      Let’s see.

      Hellcats, Wildcats, Bearcats, Mustangs, Corsairs, Avengers, *hawks, *cobras, Zero/Zeke, FW190’s, Spitfires, Fighting Falcons, Sabres, Super Sabres, Thunderchiefs, Viggens, Drakens, Gripens, and a cast of thousands of others as well.

      Hell, even the Buffalo, FFS.

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