In August 1936, Germany dispatched to help the fascists in Spain, where the war began civilian clothes, so called Legion "Condor", an armed "Heinkel". By November, it became evident that He-51 in all respects lost the new Russian fighter I-15 and I-16. The situation is so complicated that the fourth most experienced machine Bf-109 did not hit the airfield research center at Rechlin, and right on the front. Although defects in yet "nedovedennogo" aircraft had enough, 7 weeks of successful fights assured the German air headquarters that in his arsenal — the best fighter in the world.
Heinkel He-51, Legion Condor
The plane-fighter I-15
In February 1937 the assembly strip in Augsburg came first serial Bf-109B-1, and the summer of this year, fighter of the Legion "Condor" absolutely took over the sky of Spain. Despite the fact that "Messershmity" then were the units, the Republicans were not able to pull out a victory even number. So, Lieutenant Wilhelm Balthasar Luftwaffe at one point, for about 6 minutes knocked four-16. Like many other pilots became aces later, he honed his skills here.
I-16 fighter in civilian war in Spain
Under the terms of the Versailles peace agreement, signed by Germany in 1919, it was completely forbidden to have any fleet. But in a country with a devastated economy and indemnities imposed favorites possibility of a new aviation heyday was almost eliminated. Most of the fighter pilots who survived the First World War, were irrelevant.
The heads of many European military at that time held the doctrine of the Italian General Giulio Douhet, who believed that in the next war will be the main goal of the industry and the resources of the enemy and the winner will be the first one to be able to hurt and this and that. It was assumed that it must perform a languorous bombers, whose armada, dropping hundreds of bombs on the enemy's factories will ensure the victory of ground troops.
Such machines have been around since the end of World War I and, without annoying improving, now became the main striking power of countries. Fighter same aviation all the belligerent states after the Treaty of Versailles was very run down. At the highest agility and slightly increased the speed right up to the kind of fighters early 30's not enough machines differed from the First World War.
Bomber is changed beyond recognition. Becoming a monoplane, it was made of duralumin, received two or three languid, but the massive engine. Now everyday fighter just could not catch up with him. Time bezotstupno sought configurations in the construction of machines that, in general, there were quite slowly.
In the middle of 30th British flying a biplane "Gladiator" Company "Gloucester", their Russian counterparts — or a biplane-15, or on a small monoplane I-16 (both — Polikarpov). Americans, Finns and soon began to develop similar to the barrel "Buffalo" Office "Brewster", reminiscent of aircraft-champions of the 7-year-old made the slogan "With a massive engine will fly anything." And the Dutch piloted "Fokker", seemed like faster on training plane.
In 1935, the company finally appeared on the Teuton "Heinkel-51." In aircraft, designed and built as a sports, at first glance guessed fighter, who was sitting in the cockpit far not new. Despite the ban, the command of the Reichswehr in 1924 beginning secretly train pilots abroad. Most of all it helps the young Soviet country. In Lipetsk there a hidden military base, prepared the German military pilots. The cooperation was mutually beneficial: the Germans were obliged to provide modern equipment and professionals, so right of the USSR in exchange for a place to train their own staff and the development of new designs.
First 30's case between Germany and the Russian Union worsened, and in 1933, the base was closed. But who became chancellor, and later president, Hitler no longer needed the help. He is ignoring the European public to build a powerful military aviation in Germany. By this time, the Nazi Party had made several flying units, pilots are getting ready for a flying club and a 4-year schools, "Lufthansa", where, together with the preparation of civilian aviation professionals created the backbone of the future Air Force personnel. As early as March 33rd, these disparate organizations together in a single, and on 5 May of the same year was created the Reich Air Ministry. It was headed past the pilot of the First World Hermann Goering. However, by the time Göring joined the Nazi party in 1922, more than motivate policy than the difficulties of fighter aircraft. In addition, soon he was appointed Minister of the Interior of Prussia, and gain complete control over the police, the Gestapo started the company. New features many otymali
time, and therefore, having no ability to engage in "airplane" chores, last ace commissioned the construction of military aviation Erhard Milch, the past director of "Lufthansa".
It is to cope with the task, with the support of Milch Goering did Luftwaffe — the armed forces, not similar to the one the Air Force other countries in the world in which military aircraft were treated only as a means of support for ground troops. The Luftwaffe did not depend on the army and were quite independent. Apart from the technology in their cut in addition to the defense forces, radar parts, services, aerial surveillance, warning and communication, as airborne compounds and even their own land divisions, which were ground combat.
The basic tactical unit of the new Air Force was a squadron, numbering about 100 planes and is divided into three, rarely four Air Group, approximately 35 cars each, which, in turn, consisted of a 3-shtafeley squadrons — from 12 to 15 aircraft. Across Germany, construction began of new aircraft factories, airfields and training camps. The law on the development of military aviation, signed by Hitler, March 1, 1935, the de jure approved the Luftwaffe, which numbered at this time 1888 aircraft of various types and about 20 thousand people of the personnel.
Theorists Luftwaffe also committed to being thought of Douai, relied on bombers, referring to the fighter, as, in general, and experts at other states, with obvious disdain. Therefore, when Dr. Willy Messerschmitt proposed military activities of the project of the new fighter, some commanders of the German Air Force was convinced that such a machine would not be put into service. After all, the machine, the contours of which first appeared in 1934 on the drawing board Rehtelya Walter, the head designer of "Bavarian aircraft plants", was nothing like the others. Rehtel Messerschmitt and the risk of naming and capital, in spite of the world war, not just made a new plane — they opened in the newest era of aviation history.
In August 1935, the first "Messerschmitt-109" was r
eady to fly. In the Bf-109 used all the most advanced at that time, developments in the field of aerodynamics. He does not fit the usual sights on the fighter, but he was specifically destined to be one of the best aircraft of the next decade. Tests the latest cars passed brilliantly and not left at the selection committee no hesitation in her Advantages over all the fighters of the world in speed, climbing and combat effectiveness. Colonel Ernst Udet appointed inspector of fighter aircraft and previously skeptical about "Messershmity-109", after several flights dramatically changed his outlook. Soon he showed Goering and Defense Minister von Blomberg exciting "battle", "knocking" first four He-51, and then the connection bombers, which they comped.
Now the higher ranks Luftwaffe looked at plane other eyes. And soon there was also the first to test it in the case: warring in Spain Legion "Condor", where the right of assembly line Craps new Bf-109-B1, headed for complete domination in the air.
The command of the Luftwaffe on the basis of the analysis of military operations in the air to draw the conclusion that instead of the classic strategy of warfare link — three aircraft advisable to go to the newest, more effective. The Germans were flying in pairs — Leading stormed, and the slave was covering his tail. Two pairs created system, dubbed the "four fingers" which cooperated concentrated firepower and freedom in the movement of machines.
And the emergence of "Messershmity," and the birth of modern Spain in the sky strategy led the Germans to a fundamental change in the overall strategy of the air war: the fighter must not become defensive and offensive weapon designed to "clear" the air raid before the bombers, not to beat during the last battle. Now it is the fighter to become a means of gaining dominance in the air. This concept is sought not just sturdy aircraft and of excellent pilots, and almost the most best pilots and machines. Specifically Germany first realized that the most important thing in the plane — the pilot, the skill of which will depend on the final battle. And these pilots began to appear. And after the full development of aviation reincarnated almost a national policy, the fascination with flight in the country has become all the rage. She was born even a saying: "The pilots — means the winners." From qualifiers pilots required within 3 years of study for which they were to have flown more than 400 hours to learn how to have a perfect plane, merging with it together. By September 1939 by the Luftwaffe were 3,350 combat vehicles, which recently had to start active military actions.
September 1, 1939 about 1,600 armored I and IV of the air forces of Germany invaded Poland, airy place. At 6:30 am the alarm from the field Balice airport has risen a couple of Polish fighter R.11s. The lead was Captain Mieczyslaw Medvetsky, slave — Lieutenant Vladislav Gnysh. A little take-off, both cars were in front of a bomber, piloted by Sergeant Frank Neubert. Litsezrev straight ahead two Polish fighter, he gave a longish turn on the aircraft master. Fighter Medvetskaya disappeared in a cloud of fiery explosion. "Junkers" dovernul car on the slave, but he walked away from the blow. After some time, the Polish pilot saw two more German bombers. Who was the other end: after the attack Gnysha both German cars were burn out on the ground …
Thus began the second global war in the air. Polish fighter brigade, not owning any machines that are comparable with the German nor the experience to take a losing battle. But they fought desperately: at noon on September 1 pilots recorded on his own account four "Messershmity» Bf-109. A Sept. 5 were shot down two "Messershmity» Bf-110. During the first 6 days of the war the Polish fighter crew shot down 38 enemy bombers, and yet the forces were very uneven, besides September 17 bout against Poland to take part of the Belorussian and Kiev special military district had 500 combat aircraft of different types. The capitulation of the partition of Poland was now a matter of few days. And yet the Polish campaign dearly cost the Luftwaffe: Germany lost 285 aircraft, and the German aircraft industry was able to make up for those lost in the spring of 1940.
Despite the successes of Germany, the French command, stayed in a good-natured humor. It is believed that once the Poles were able to put the Germans are so tangible damage, the French pilots on their own MS and "Noukah-75" will be able to reflect at least some attack.
By 10 May 1940 the Luftwaffe for the coming of the West has about 4,050 aircraft. Never — before or after the Germans did not use the right amount of such machines. Even against the Soviet Union, later year with small, the Air Ministry was able to put 3,509 aircraft.
Massive strikes against enemy airfields Germans tried to "withdraw" from the French air force combat in the first days of the war, but the samples were bad. Air France and came to the rescue British fighters were constantly fighting with the stubborn Luftwaffe, which first day battles lost more planes than ever for always second world war. After only 16 days after the invasion, the second commander of the Air Force A. Kesselring wrote: "The continuous fighting Frayed our men and materiel, our combat power has dropped to 30 — 50%." During the 42 day or fighting the French pilots shot down 935 German aircraft. Start a "lightning war" cost Germany in 2073 general aircraft losses and cost the lives of 6,611 pilots.
In this battle, "Messershmity" for the first time had to meet the enemy, equal to themselves. It was a new British fighter "Spitfire" MK-1 designer Reginald Mitchell, who had begun to come into service in the Royal Air Force in 1939. Oh, characterized the later the plane is one of the best pilots of the Luftwaffe — Captain Werner Molders, having experienced the trophy "Spitfire": "It is great helm, light, maneuverable, and in fact is not inferior to the flight properties of our Bf-109."
And yet stubborn head of land forces forced the French to abandon their airfields. Their forces are rapidly dwindling. The English army was defeated on the continent, dropped heavy weapons and almost all the equipment and was evacuated to the end of May on the island from the port of Dunkirk. France surrendered on July 3.
Subsequent to Hitler's plans was Britain. Now Luftwaffe pinned special hopes: to "Operation Sea Lion" the German Air Force had to grab supremacy in the skies of Britain, that did not prevent anything landing landing. One of the directives of the summer of 1940 Hitler said that the British air force must be diluted to such an extent that they could not offer much in any significant resistance to the advancing troops …
July 10, 1940 a group of German bombers, DO-17, accompanied by about 50 fighters under the command of veteran Spanish Hannes Trautlofta rose into the air to bomb the British naval convoy near Dover. 30 took off to intercept a British fighter, covering the ships, and stormed the Germans. Thus began the "Battle of Britain".