Unteroffizier Werner Peinemann of Sturmstaffel 1 sits in the cockpit of his Fw 190, whilst a mechanic rests on the 50 mm plate of strengthened frontal-plate glass. This aircraft also has 30 mm armoured glass quarter and side panels. Wounded in action on 4 March 1944, Peinemann joined 11./JG 3 upon his recovery two months later. He then transferred to 7.(Sturm)/JG 4 on 21 August 1944 and was killed when his fighter crashed on take-off on 28 September. Peinemann had a solitary victory credit to his name at the time of his death
Photo & Caption featured in Osprey Aviation Elite Units 20: Luftwaffe Sturmgruppen.
An Fw 190A-7 of l./JG 11 is refuelled and rearmed at Rotenburg in March 1944. The armorers working below the wing are loading ammunition into the outer MG 151/20E wing-mounted cannon. The aircraft also carries a 300-liter drop tank. The A-? variant packed a far heavier punch than the original Fw 190A-1 and A-2 of 1941-42, thus making it an ideal “bomber killer”.
“We fought for our country and to stay alive. We did not think about the personal nature of killing in the air. We were proud of every victory in the air, and particularly happy that we had not been hit ourselves. Of course, I tell myself in quiet moments today: ‘You’ve killed. In order to protect others and not be killed yourself.’ But in the end: for what? The Third Reich trained 30,000 pilots. Ten thousand survived the war. One-third. This is the highest loss rate along with the U-boat sailors.”
Messerschmitt Bf 109G-10 (Actually a K-4) “Yellow 1” flown by the Leutnant Günther Landt, Staffelkapitän of 11./JG 53 “Pick As” of Reichsverteidigung (Defense of the Reich) engages a P-51D.
Artwork by Antonis Karidis.