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So the trio of bombers encountered no resistance as they flew over the mainland. At approximately 8: It was flying 31, feet above the city when it opened its bomb bay doors. Little Boy unleashed forces equivalent to 16 kt of TNT. The total area of destruction spread across 4.
Another 70, suffered injuries of varying degrees. Colonel Tibbets landed his plane on a base at Tinian after a total of 12 hours and 13 minutes in flight, receiving the Distinguished Service Cross soon thereafter. His aircraft was transferred to an airbase in Roswell, New Mexico. After the war, it was sent to Davis-Moncton Air Force Base in Arizona, and from there to various locations until , when the Smithsonian took possession of its dismantled components. Restoration of the Enola Gay began on December 5, However, both the American Legion and the Air Force Association objected to elements of the planned exhibit, saying that they focused too much attention on the death and damage caused by the bombing.
Despite the controversy, the planes restoration continued. War is hell indeed, and the pain inflicted on Hiroshima and Nagasaki was no greater than that suffered by countless millions during the six years from to However, they also prevented the slaughter of an estimated 1,, persons, had the US invaded Japan using conventional weapons.
Using numbers to weigh ethics may seem cold and cruel. But coldness and cruelty are essential aspects of warfare. In the final analysis, what Colonel Tibbets and the other members of the Enola Gay crew did on August 6, was a sad, but necessary, evil. Find a vehicle.
Number of b29 bomers to escort the enola gay
About this article Category General. Sign In or Sign Up. France Edizione: Italia Ausgabe: The defensive armament system proved successful in combat, and was exclusive among the combatants during the war. This is probably the highest number of air-to-air kills by a single airplane during one mission. To introduce the B into combat, bombers were based in India to strike at Japanese targets in Indochina. Combat operations began on June 5, , with the bombing of Bangkok, Siam Thailand.
In order to bomb Japan itself, Chinese staging bases were prepared. To mount a mission from China, the Bs had to first ferry their supplies from India over the "Hump" to China. When sufficient material was accumulated, the Bs struck Japan from their Chinese bases. These attacks were ineffective and costly. With the capture of the Pacific Mariana Islands group from the Japanese, a much better venue from which to launch B raids against Japan was available. The Marianas were closer, and the Navy brought in the necessary supplies.
Five huge airbases were built on the islands of Tinian, Saipan, and Guam.
Hiroshima and Nagasaki Missions - Planes & Crews
The first raids on Japan were doctrinaire high altitude, precision-bombing missions, for which the B had been expressly designed. A change in leadership put General Curtiss LeMay in command, he soon switched tactics. Low altitude, area bombing with unarmed Bs dropping firebombs on Japanese cities proved highly successful. These attacks were the most destructive in history, atomic bombing included, leveling cities and crippling their war manufacturing efforts.
The two atomic bombs dropped by Bs on Japan remain the only ones ever used in warfare.
A Necessary Evil: The Story of the Enola Gay
Three days later, without a Japanese offer of surrender, a B named Bockscar bombed Nagasaki. Contrary to popular belief these attacks did not end the war. It continued unabated with the largest B force of bombers striking on August 14, Even after the Japanese agreed to the cease fire of August 15, fighting continued until August 18, when the last action probably occurred. Japanese fighters attacked two B photo aircraft flying over Tokyo, two crewmen were wounded and one was killed.
The B, while functioning as a deadly warplane to its enemies, had a humanitarian aspect to its missions. Bs nicknamed Super Dumbos provided an ocean search and rescue service for their downed brothers.
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After the war, Bs dropped food and clothing to inmates of prisoner of war camps. Toward the end of the war the Soviet Union observed the massive destruction visited on Germany and Japan by Allied bombers. Lacking an equivalent aircraft, the U. Soviet forces had access to the latest German turbojet and rocket aircraft, but the B was the only manned aircraft copied the U. Fortunately for the Russians, three Bs fell into their hands during the war, and from these pattern aircraft, Soviet designers reverse-engineered a near replica designated the Tupolev Tu An entire aircraft industry segment was created to produce the very advanced airframe, engine, electrical and electronic components needed for it.
More than production aircraft were built.
The B fought again during the Korean War, in which the enemy used both propeller driven and very fast turbojet fighters in attempts to stop its bombing raids. The bombers were updated with more powerful engines, reversible pitch propellers, and other enhancements. Bs were in action on all but 26 days during the war, some 35 months of combat, with a relatively small force of just over bombers. Nonetheless, a bomb tonnage was dropped on Korean targets, almost equal to that during the earlier Pacific campaign. Smart bombs were dropped on Korean targets; radio guided Razon and giant Tarzon 12, lb.
Bs flew day and night missions accompanied by escorting fighters, but Mig turbojet fighters only downed some of the big bombers, while taking losses from their defending guns. In a notable action, three Migs were shot down by a single bomber, which survived the war, and later accounted for two more Migs.
A Superfortress was instrumental to the first successful manned supersonic airplane flight. Interestingly, the Soviets used their Tu-4s and captured Bs as mother ships in a similar research program.
Communist China evidently still flies Tupolev Tu-4s, modified with turboprop engines and a radar rotodome, in the airborne early warning role. Three manufacturers built 3, Superfortresses in five factories. The Renton facility, today the home of Boeing's single aisle jet airliners, built the last B on May 28, Fawcett Pub.
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