By David Alan Johnson
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Additional resources for Battle Of Britain: July-november 1940
At this stage of the Battle, British air-sea rescue was virtually non-existent. ’’ The Luftwaffe had a well-organized rescue operation, which included about thirty Heinkel He 59 seaplanes to save pilots from the sea. While waiting to be picked-up by a He 59, the pilot was equipped with inflatable rubber dinghies and other items that saved many a German pilot from death either by drowning or exposure. But the RAF had no such system, which cost many pilots and aircrew that might have been saved. Britain was enjoying a lot more success against the Luftwaffe than in her battle to convince the United States to join her as an ally.
The sooner Britain was eliminated, the sooner he would be able to turn his full attention to Russia. The Battle of Britain Page 51 And so, Hitler decided, the invasion had to be prepared by 15 September 1940. This was the date given by Raeder as the earliest possible time for completion of preparations. The Luftwaffe would begin an intensified campaign against targets in southern England as a preliminary to invasion. After two weeks of concentrated attacks against the Royal Air Force, naval bases, and ports, Hitler himself would decide whether or not the invasion would be carried out in 1940.
W. 9, code-named “Peewit”, sailed from the Thames Estuary under cover of darkness. A German mobile radar station on the cliffs on Cap Blanc Nez, opposite Dover, discovered the convoy as it entered the Straits of Dover. ) French-based E-boats attacked the convoy, sinking 3 ships, damaging 2 more, and causing a collision that resulted in another sinking. By dawn on Thursday, the ships were scattered all over the Channel—there was no more convoy. Stukas of General Wolfram von Richtofen’s Fliegerkorps VIII arrived to attack the straggling ships.