Item description for JASTA BOELCKE: The History of Jasta 2, 1916-1918 by Norman Franks, Sue Dyson, Christopher Moncrieff, Mike Pellowski, Rod Ollerenshaw, David Bromwich & David Mungello...
As August drew to a close in 1916, the German Air Service was reeling almost helplessly towards inevitable defeat on the Somme. The Artillery and Feldflieger Abteilungen, the Kampfstaffeln, had been quickly reduced to relative impotency by the overwhelming quantitative and qualitative superiority of the Allies. The once feared Fokker and Pfalz Eindeckers proved unequal to the task of checking the aerial flood which daily scoured the ravaged German front.
A crisis was reached. Germany was compelled to seek a new solution. Jagdstaffel 2 was formed to stem the tide and fight back. Later by Imperial decree renamed Jasta Boelcke in honour of its distinguished commander Oswald Boelcke, this military formation had no prolonged, entangled gestation period. There was no parent, no prior stirrings of life. Jasta 2 was lifted from the keyboard of a typewriter, assigned to the First Army and provided with a leader.
Between 2 September and 31 December 1916 it scored 85 kills, and was destined to end the war with 336 confirmed victories. Here, for the first time, is the story of that auspicious and audacious unit, told in his inimitable style by Norman Franks, an expert in his subject.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 1" Width: 6.25" Height: 9.25" Weight: 1.15 lbs.
Release Date Jun 1, 2004
Publisher Grub Street
ISBN 1904010768 ISBN13 9781904010760
Availability 0 units.
More About Norman Franks, Sue Dyson, Christopher Moncrieff, Mike Pellowski, Rod Ollerenshaw, David Bromwich & David Mungello
Norman Franks lives in East Sussex and is a recognised authority on both World War 1 and World War 2 aviation history. With around 80 published works on his subject, he has written many titles for Osprey.
Reviews - What do customers think about JASTA BOELCKE: The History of Jasta 2, 1916-1918?
A DIARY OF THE RISE AND FALL OF THE GERMAN FIGHTER FORCE IN WWI Mar 27, 2008
JASTA BOELCKE is a treasure trove for any student/aficionado of World War I air warfare. It begins by describing the development of the German Jastas or "fighter squadrons", which arose out of a need for the Germans to wrest control of the skies over the Somme from the British during the late spring and summer of 1916. (At the same time, the French fighter escadrilles had all but driven the Germans out of the skies over Verdun.)
The Germans needed to mount an effective challenge to Allied air supremacy, which hampered the efforts of their own two-seater crews out on artillery-spotting duties over the battlefield --- as well as reconnaissance crews to gain photographic intelligence about the disposition of the enemy in the trenches and rear areas. These activities, as the war went on, helped to influence the planning and execution of military operations on the ground.
From August 1916, the Jastas began to be organized along different areas of the Western Front. The brainchild for these units came from Oswald Boelcke, one of Germany's earliest air heroes and tacticians. Boelcke was given the command of Jasta 2, which he led until his death in October 1916. Henceforth, Jasta 2 was renamed "Jasta Boelcke" in recognition of Boelcke's contribution in making Jasta 2 one of the premiere fighter units in the German Luftstreitkrafte.
The book goes on to detail the ups and downs that Jasta Boelcke experienced through the end of 1916 and on until 1917. With the arrival of Karl Bolle as its final commander in February 1918, Jasta Boelcke again was able to reclaim much of its luster as a top-scoring unit, seeing considerable action against the French and Americans, as well as the British, up until the Armistice.
JASTA BOELCKE reads like a war diary and comes highly recommended.
Lots of Good Data, Definitely a Technical Read. Jan 19, 2007
I'm perhaps biased as I had a relative in Jasta 2, but this is a must-have book for WWI German aviation enthusiasts. A bit aniseptic in its facts and figures, but a great source of information.