• La Luftwaffe en Belgique, Tome II. Fighting escalation and withdrawal. Collection Histoire des Unités n°16

    In 1941-1942, if we do not take into account the night operations of Bomber Command, the air war ultimately had little effect on Belgium. 1943, the pivotal year of the Second World War, was however marked for this country by the increasing intrusion of the ‚Viermots‘ of the American VIIIth Airforce who, until then, had shown little expression in its airspace.
    Since 6th of April 1943, the population discovered the deadly power of the ‚Flying Fortresses‘ during the bloody bombing of Mortsel. On this occasion, we could apprehend the local weakness of the Tagjagd (day hunt). Despite a regular call to hunters based in the vicinity or temporary transfers of portions of Jagdeschwader, the German hunt (supported by the Flak) could hardly contain the assaults of the USAAF.
    Since the first quarter of 1944, when American fighters now had autonomy to fly over Reich territory, the daytime defense of the Belgian defensive glacis collapsed and aerial combat in the Belgian sky turned into bloody setbacks for a Tagjagd still present but numerically dominated.
    Despite its important successes and the strengthening of its structures (such as the entry into service of the Florennes airfield at the beginning of 1943), the Nachtjagd in turn suffered the law of numbers and it was probably during the last quarter of 1943 that its aircraft lost the game. Although fighting foot to foot, the Nachtjäger could no longer seriously block the British four-engine fleets going to bomb the Reich.
    The ordeal of the Luftwaffe in Belgium continued in 1944 until the evacuation of the country in September 1944.
    However, aerial fighting continued sporadically in the east of the country, culminating in December 1944 with the outbreak of the ‚Battle of the Bulge‘. But, despite the efforts and sacrifices made, the Luftwaffe was no longer able to carry any decision (as was the case on 1 January 1945 during Operation Bodenplatte).
    In 1945, pushed back to the east, the German aircraft rarely manifested themselves on Belgium, the last of them seeming to have been lost on March 30 at Saint-Géry.
    With more than 550 b/w pictures!!