MHO Home   Forum Home   Help   Register   Login
 
 
Welcome to MilitaryHistoryOnline.com.
You are not signed in.
The current time is: 3/25/2019 3:02:12 PM
 (1939-1945) WWII Battles
AuthorMessage
anemone
DONCASTER S. YORKS, UK
top 5
E-9 Cmd Sgt Major


Posts: 7733
http:// 82.44.47.99
18 Squadron RAF- Bristol Bisleys all lost in Western Desert on 4th Dec 1942
Posted on: 9/17/2018 7:50:07 AM
On the 4th December Wing Commander Malcolm’s 18 Squadron was detailed to give Close support to the 1st Army, receiving orders by wireless from the rear link of the Army/Air support Control. He received by this means an instruction to attack an enemy satellite airfield near Chouigui. This was not a legitimate close support target and to attack such an objective with Bisley aircraft needed very accurate timing and close co-ordination with a fighter escort.

Wing Commander Malcolm was fully aware of these facts but, because of the nature of the call, its urgency and the confused state of the fighting, he did not hesitate. He took off immediately with his squadron and proceeded to the target.

When the mission had been completed the squadron was intercepted by an overwhelming force of enemy fighters. One by one its aircraft were shot down until only Wing Commander Malcolm’s aircraft remained. Finally, this was seen to be shot down in flames. The surviving pilots accord him high praise for the manner in which he controlled his hard-pressed squadron and attempted to maintain the formation.



[Read More]

Regards

Jim
---------------
Pro Patria Saepe Pro Rege Semper

Michigan Dave
Muskegon, Michigan, MI, USA
top 5
E-9 Cmd Sgt Major


Posts: 4759

Re: 18 Squadron RAF Bristol Bisleys all lost on 4th Dec 1942
Posted on: 9/17/2018 9:14:11 AM
Hi Jim,

Very heroic mission, tragic that all of the planes were lost! It sounds like they didn’t have fighter support?

At least the captured pilots were impIsoned, not always the case in the Pacific!?

Very interesting, thanks for posting!
Cheers,
MD
---------------
"The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract."

anemone
DONCASTER S. YORKS, UK
top 5
E-9 Cmd Sgt Major


Posts: 7733
http:// 82.44.47.99
Re: 18 Squadron RAF Bristol Bisleys all lost on 4th Dec 1942
Posted on: 9/17/2018 9:43:01 AM
Dave it is thought that the the the squadron of Bisleys (Bristol Blenheim Mk V) light bombers were caught by the German ace Major Hans Joachim Marseilles Gruppen of Me 109s--all 30 of them-the lightly armed and relatively slow Bisleys had no chance.W/Comm Malcolm was awarded the Victoria Cross for great courage and leadership.

The Squadron was re-equipped with American Douglas Bostons thereafter.

Regards

Jim
---------------
Pro Patria Saepe Pro Rege Semper

redcoat
Stockport, UK
top 30
E-5 Sergeant


Posts: 324

Re: 18 Squadron RAF Bristol Bisleys all lost on 4th Dec 1942
Posted on: 9/17/2018 2:12:55 PM
n/a

redcoat
Stockport, UK
top 30
E-5 Sergeant


Posts: 324

Re: 18 Squadron RAF Bristol Bisleys all lost on 4th Dec 1942
Posted on: 9/17/2018 2:41:53 PM

Quote:
Dave it is thought that the the the squadron of Bisleys (Bristol Blenheim Mk V) light bombers were caught by the German ace Major Hans Joachim Marseilles Gruppen of Me 109s--all 30 of them-the lightly armed and relatively slow Bisleys had no chance.W/Comm Malcolm was awarded the Victoria Cross for great courage and leadership.

The Squadron was re-equipped with American Douglas Bostons thereafter.

Regards

Jim
--anemone
9 aircraft of 18 Squadron RAF and 2 aircraft of 614 Sqadron took part in this raid, all were indeed lost.

ps: Marseille took no part in this encounter as he had already been killed in a flying accident in September 1942.

anemone
DONCASTER S. YORKS, UK
top 5
E-9 Cmd Sgt Major


Posts: 7733
http:// 82.44.47.99
Re: 18 Squadron RAF Bristol Bisleys all lost on 4th Dec 1942
Posted on: 9/18/2018 3:44:05 AM
Thanks redcoat for putting me right on this issue-especially the the M arseilles gaffe.

Regards

Jim
---------------
Pro Patria Saepe Pro Rege Semper

Michigan Dave
Muskegon, Michigan, MI, USA
top 5
E-9 Cmd Sgt Major


Posts: 4759

Re: 18 Squadron RAF Bristol Bisleys all lost on 4th Dec 1942
Posted on: 12/29/2018 9:54:18 AM
Hey,

Check out a recent find of a RAF plane in the jungles of New Guinea!?

[Read More]


Comments on this find?

MD
---------------
"The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract."

George
Centre Hastings, ON, Canada
top 5
E-9 Cmd Sgt Major
Posts: 8825

Re: 18 Squadron RAF Bristol Bisleys all lost on 4th Dec 1942
Posted on: 12/29/2018 5:39:12 PM
Isn't it a B17 with a US crew? I didn't see any reference to RAF flying this plane.

Cheers,

George

Michigan Dave
Muskegon, Michigan, MI, USA
top 5
E-9 Cmd Sgt Major


Posts: 4759

Re: 18 Squadron RAF Bristol Bisleys all lost on 4th Dec 1942
Posted on: 12/29/2018 7:40:09 PM
Your right George, there were two stories of wrecked planes, & I put the one on the B17 on, sorry,

still a great find!

MD
---------------
"The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract."

brian grafton
Victoria, BC, Canada
top 10
E-9 Sergeant Major


Posts: 2285

Re: 18 Squadron RAF Bristol Bisleys all lost on 4th Dec 1942
Posted on: 12/29/2018 9:41:44 PM
Dave, that's a very bad link in just about every way I can imagine. Misleading photos (at least three different models of B-17 shown); horrendous writing; nonsensical headline. Those failings are of note, just to start.

I've never known what to think of the Bisley, on paper the fifth and final version of the venerable Bristol Blenheim. I don't think it should have been built, and I don't think it met any niche function, and I don't think it should have been on active duty as late as December 1942. The fact that the incident Jim refers to happened in North Africa does not surprise me. Even this late in the war, GB policy appears to have been to ship obsolete a/c to fronts far from Britain.

It's tempting to compare the Bristol Blenheim and the Dornier Do-17 through their various Marks or iterations, for a number of reasons. Both were conceived as civilian a/c. Both were, at certain times in their history, the exemplification of "fast bombers" (Ger: "schnellbomberen"). Both demonstrated sufficient design strength they could bear extensive modifications. Both continued in service long after their weaknesses were known.

The aircraft from which the Blenheim was born was the Bristol Type 142. It was designed to meet an order by Lord Rothermere, owner of the British newspaper Daily Mail. Rothermere and his paper were highly critical of RAF development practices, and wished to demonstrate British dominance in a/c design. The result was a twin-engined low-wing monoplane (named "Britain First") with a crew of two and the ability to carry four passengers. It was the first purpose-built executive a/c, and it was faster by far than any a/c in the RAF inventory.

Even in the mid-1930s, the Air Ministry could read both signs of change and writings on the wall. They called for a military version of the Type 142 Britain First a/c, called at the time the Type 142M. It would see light in 1937, and would differ from the Type 142 in that it would be re-engined, have support a mid-wing configuration, and be up-crewed to three.

It was, for its day, a hell of an aircraft. But it predated German and RAF fighter developments. By the onset of war in 1939, both "fast bombers" were no longer faster than opposing fighters ( Bf-109E and 109F; Hurricane and Spitfire). And they were relatively lightly armed. Suddenly, both were vulnerable.

Point: the Blenheim, like the Do-17 (by now, tested and adapted in Spain), sported an adaptable air frame. By 1939, the typical Dornier Do-17 model was the -17Z, and the Blenheim was the Mark IV. Both a/c were being up-gunned, up-engined and up-armoured. The Blenheim Mark I was adapted as early as 1940 as a primitive night fighter, and was also configured as a fighter, with a belly pack of mgs. But both were long in the tooth, and were being increasingly restricted to specific services (e.g., the Do-17s of 1940 were restricted to night flights over Britain, since they could not defend themselves agains RAF fighters; Blenheims were increasingly used for hit-and-run raids across the channel).

The Blenheim IV – confusingly, also called the Bolingbroke – was about the best that could be expected from the original Type 142. For Canadians, the Bolingbroke designation means a Canadian-built Blenheim IV. I don't think that Canadian-built IVs (or, Bollies) were committed to active fields of battle. They flew on both coasts in a defensive capacity, and they were a mainstay of BCATP, but their active duty was much curtailed. But in Britain and in many fields of war, the Mark IVs (Bollies) remained in battle. As did the Bisleys, that final iteration of the Blenheim.

The Bisley was more than twice the weight of the Blenheim I. It had larger engines and increased fuel tanks. But it was actually slower than the Blenheim I by more than 25 mph. In some versions, the Bisley had a chin turret, but I've read (I can't state this as fact) that that turret was rear-focused.

Sorry to go on so long over the precursors of the Bisley. To be honest, that may in part have been triggered by the misdirecting photos in the link Dave offered. And – mayhap – sorry to discuss what is at most a side-issue to Jim's initial post. But ... .

I don't know how many servicemen have received a VC for valour which might better be described as adherence to orders which should never have been issues. But this sounds like a possibility. The Bisleys should not have flown without cover and/or support. And I'm not sure Malcolm demonstrated leadership in executing orders such as he received. I would hate to think that VC might be used as a flag-waving coverup for bad decision-making. At the same time, there are far too many issues which might suggest that successes or braveries have been used to mask or disguise decisions of incredible stupidity by what the Brits still call "The Brass".

Nuff said for now.

Cheers
Brian G



---------------
"We have met the enemy, and he is us." Walt Kelly.

"The Best Things in Life Aren't Things" Bumper sticker.

Michigan Dave
Muskegon, Michigan, MI, USA
top 5
E-9 Cmd Sgt Major


Posts: 4759

Re: 18 Squadron RAF Bristol Bisleys all lost on 4th Dec 1942
Posted on: 12/31/2018 9:30:14 AM
Hi Brian,

Your right a very bad link! As my Mother used to tell me, "have you lost your mind!?"

Perhaps the worst link, I've ever posted!????

Cheers, & Nuff said by me!
MD
---------------
"The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract."

 Forum Ads from Google