phylo_roadking wrote:Fred, the Luftwaffe Transportgruppen never EVER mustered 1,000 Ju52s; it COULD theoretically muster that number of "transport" aircraft....but that includes floatplanes, impressed civilian types, Ju90s, FW200A/Bs etc., etc., etc....
I did write transports....
And the FJ were geared to using Ju52s, they hadn't as yet worked through any other types - apart from the DFS 230!
They went through a long period of experimentation in the Spring of '42 in various new types - but in 1940 they were stuck with the Iron Jenny.
Oh, well - the Germans used what they had when they had to - see Narvik. Apart from that, if they didn't have enough Ju's to drop the complete FJ division in one batch, which I don't think they had (things changed all the time), their departure airfields were approx. 30 minutes away.
phylo_roadking wrote:IIRC the defence of the Meuse and Albert crossings concentrated the AA assets of nearly two full divisions; there's a lot more for those divisions hitting the beaches to defend against rather than concentrate their AA assets in one or two places.
In my book I have lined it up like this:
On the morning of May 14, 1940, the AASF performed strikes against road and rail communications in Holland. Some enemy motor transport columns were also attacked, and some 10 sorties were flown against the German pontoon bridges by Sedan without losses or telling results. In the afternoon, however, the enemy had expanded their bridgeheads so that when the AASF tried again the results were disastrously different. Ellis gives us these figures:
76. Wing: 12. Squadron: Five Battles attack enemy columns, four shot down.
142. Squadron: Eight Battles attack bridges – four shot down.
226. Squadron: Six Battles attacking bridges – three shot down.
71. Wing: 105. Squadron: Eleven Battles attack bridges – six shot down.
150. Squadron: Four out of four shot down while attacking bridges.
114. Squadron: One out of two shot down while attacking columns.
139. Squadron: Four of six Blenheims shot down while attacking columns.
75. Wing: 88. Squadron: One of ten shot down while attacking bridges.
103. Squadron: Three of eight lost while attacking bridges.
218. Squadron: Ten out of eleven lost while attacking bridges.
Of these 71 light bombers 56 % went missing. What is a little surprising are the losses suffered while attacking troop columns. That bridges can have static anti-aircraft concentrations placed around them is understandable, but that a column that is stopped or on the move can defend itself so strongly indicates both a high degree of readiness as well as an ample mix of anti-aircraft resources integrated in the mobile forces. Even if the Germans complained internally (as did the British) of a lack of fighter support, they were seemingly little disturbed by the British bombing effort. With such losses it was obvious that the AASF could not continue making attacks like this, and on May 15, 1940, day bombing was greatly reduced. Only four aircraft of 28 dispatched did not return. One might ask if this was because they now attacked a little less aggressively with consequent less bombing accuracy.