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Panzerknacker
08-01-2007, 08:46 PM
Ivan Kozhedub - Top Soviet Ace.



Ivan Kozhedub was the top scoring fighter pilot on the Allied side during World War II. He was born on 8 June 1920, in the village of Obrazheyevska, Shostka district of the Sumy region in the Ukraine as the youngest of five children in his family. In 1934 he finished a seven-year school. For two years he attended a school for young workers. In beginning of 1940 he graduated from the Shostka chemical technical school, then he joined the Soviet Army admitting to the Chuguyev military aviation school.

In 1941, he finished flight school (learning to fly the UTI-4 & I-16) with excellent results. Because he remained in the school as a flight instructor, many young pilots were prepared by him. But, his dream was to enter real air battles.

He remembers in interview from Jon Guttman:

"I requested a transfer to the front more than once. But the front required well-trained fliers. While training them for future battles, I was also training myself. At the same time, it felt good to hear of their exploits at the front. In late 1942, I was sent to learn to fly a new plane, the Lavochkin LaG-5. After March 1943, I was finally in active service.
My first appointment was to the 240th Fighter Air Regiment (Istrebitelsky Aviatsy Polk, or IAP), which began combat operations on the first day of the war, on the Leningrad front. Since many graduates of the Chuguyev school served there, I did not feel out of place, not even at the beginning. Our pilot personnel included people of many nationalities. There were Belorussians, Tartars, Georgians, Russians and Ukrainians. We were all like one big family.
I got LaG-5 No. 75. Like other aircraft of our regiment, it had the words "Named after Valery Chkalov" inscribed on its fuselage. Those planes were built on donations from Soviet people. But my plane was different. Other fliers had aircraft with three fuel tanks, which were lighter and more maneuverable, whereas my fivetank aircraft was heavier. But for a start its potential was quite enough for me, a budding flier. Later on, I had many occasions to admire the strength and staying power of this plane. It had excellent structural mounting points and an ingenious fire-fighting system, which diverted the exhaust gases into the fuel tanks, and once saved me from what seemed certain death.
In my first combat, I did not get a single scratch, but my plane was badly damaged. My commander said, with good reason, "Make haste only when catching fleas." I did not heed his advice. It seemed to me I could down at least two or three enemy planes at one go. Carried away by the attack, I did not notice an umbrella of Messerschmitt Bf-110s approaching me from behind. Of course, that was a bitter experience and a serious lesson for me. Despite general failures, our morale was quite high."

http://www.elknet.pl/acestory/foto/kozedub4.jpg



On 6 July 1943, Kozhedub scored his first kill. The squadron led by Major Soldatienko spotted a group of 20 Junkers Ju 87 "Stukas" harassing the Soviet ground forces. Floowing his third attack, Kozhedub downed one of the Ju 87s.

Further dive-bombers were shot down by his comrades pilots, and the remaining Ju 87s escaped rapidly. Lets hear Kozhedub's describe of this combat: "We were ordered to attack a group of Junkers Ju-87 dive bombers. I chose a "victim" and came in quite close to it. The main thing was to fire in time. Everything happened in a twinkling. It was only on the ground, among my friends, that I recalled the details of this battle.

Caution is all-important and you have to turn your head 360 degrees all the time. The victory belonged to those who knew their planes and weapons inside out and had the initiative. On July 7, I downed a second plane and, on July 8, I destroyed another two Bf-109 fighters."

In the following ten days, Kozhedub´s victory tally rose to 8 (on 16 July 1943). In begin of August 1943 Kozhedub was promoted to flight leader funkction.

On 6 November 1943, he scored his 26th kill in a hard combat with German fighters. During the battle over the Dniepr Front, Kozhedub achiev his greatest successes. In ten days, he downed 11 enemy planes! In April 1944, he downed 3 German aircraft in one mission. On 4 February 1944, Captain Kozhedub was awarded as a Hero of the Soviet Union. In fact, he received this the highest Soviet award three times (only Pokryshkin received this award as many times as Kozhedub): second time on 19 August 1944, with total 34 kills, third time after war, on 18 August 1945.

In July 1944 he was posted to the 1st Belorussian Front as vice commander to the 176th Guards Fighter Regiment, and received La-7 No. 27, in which he score his final 17 victories.
"I was upset by my new appointment but only until I found out that I could fly with aces who went on lone-wolf operations. Day in and day out, we would fly in the morning and analyze our sorties back at the squadrons at noon. At 9 p.m., we used to gather in the canteen, where the commander gave an account of the results of the day. In this regiment, I also began to team up with Dmitry Titarenko.

The 176th Guards Fighter Regiment carried out 9,450 combat missions, of which 4,016 were lone-wolf operations; it conducted 750 air battles, in which 389 enemy aircraft were shot down."
In February 1945, Kozhedub shot down a German Me 262 "Schwalbe" jet fighter: "On February 19, 1945, 1 was on a lone-wolf operation together with Dmitry Titorenko to the north of Frankfurt. I noticed a plane at an altitude of 350 meters (2,170 feet). It was flying along the Oder at a speed that was marginal for my plane. I made a quick about-face and started pursuing it at full throttle, coming down so as to approach it from under the "belly." My wingman opened fire, and the Me-262 (which was a jet, as I had already realized) began turning left, over to my side, losing speed in the process. That was the end of it. I would never have overtaken it if it had flown in a straight line. The main thing was to attack enemy planes during turns, ascents or descents, and not to lose precious seconds."

http://www.elknet.pl/acestory/foto/kozedub5.jpg

Ivan Kozhedub and congratulations from 'tavarischi' after successful flight. In background 'red nose' of Kozhedubs La-7 fighter.

By now, he was Second Commander, in the rank of Major, of 176th GvIAP (Guards Fighter Aviation Regiment). Kozhedub remembers alo his last aerial combat in WW2 on 19 April 1945, when he flew with Lieutenant Titorenko:

"On the evening of April 17, we went on a lone-wolf operation over the suburbs of Berlin. All of a sudden we saw a group of 40 Fw-190s with bomb loads, flying at an altitude of 3,500 meters in our direction. We climbed to the left and flew behind them under the cover of clouds. The odds were obviously not in our favor, but we still decided to attack since the enemy aircraft were heading for our troops. At maximum speed, we approached the tail of the formation, out of the sun. I opened fire almost point-blank at the wingman of the last pair of aircraft. The first Fw-190 fell into the suburbs of the city. Several planes turned to the west, while others continued their flight.

We decided to drive a wedge into the combat formation and break it up. Making a steep dive, we swept past enemy planes. As often happened in such cases, the Nazis thought that there were a lot of us. Confused, they started jettisoning bombs. Then they formed a defensive circle--each fighter covering the tail of the one in front of him--and began to attack us. Titorenko skillfully downed the plane that followed me. At that point, we saw our fighters and we turned for home. But suddenly, we saw yet another Fw-190 with a bomb.

Apparently, the pilot had received a warning, for he made a quick dive and jettisoned his bomb over the suburbs of Berlin. But I still reached him on the recovery from his dive. The plane literally burst in the air. We made a good landing but our fuel tanks were completely empty. After that battle, I brought my personal score of downed Nazi planes to a total of 62."

During WWII, Ivan Kozhedub flew 326 combat missions, took part in 126 aerial combats, and achieved 62 kills (in them 22 FW 190 and 18 Ju 87). The planes he flew were La-5 FN & La-7 fighters. In 1949, he finished the Zhukovski Military Aviation Academy. In 1956, he graduated from the High Command´s Academy, after which he was promoted to General. Ivan Kozhedub passed away in August 1991.

Here is the full (and long) list of Ivan Kozhedub’s victories:

Apart from these 62 victories, Ivan Kozhedub also was forced to shoot down two U.S. P-51 Mustangs that mistakenly attacked his La-7 on one occasion. Both these P-51 losses have been verified by USAAF sources.


http://www.elknet.pl/acestory/kozedub/kozedub.htm


__________________________________________________ ______


Does anybody have more information about the later incident?

Is beliavable?

Chevan
08-02-2007, 12:42 AM
Thanks PZ for good infor.
By why did you call this thread as the "Ivan Kozhedub VS USAAF".
May be for provocation with the our american members?;)
True in the 1945 there were a several cases of air combats the Soviets Vs Allies- i know for sure the americans also shot down mistakely few of soviets fighter in the last month of war. Soviets shot down some of them too.
Actually the Kozhedub was the first (proved) hight scope allied. Althou i heared the story that some of soviet pilots had ever the more scope - for instance Fedorov the Spainish ace.

In 1949, he finished the Zhukovski Military Aviation Academy. In 1956, he graduated from the High Command´s Academy, after which he was promoted to General. Ivan Kozhedub passed away in August 1991.

Here is the full (and long) list of Ivan Kozhedub’s victories

I just want to add the combat history of Kozhedub did not finished in the 1945.
In 1950-53 he was sended to the Korea as the commander of 324 UAD ( fighter division). Althought the soviet command forbid him participate with the combats - they forget to lose in combat the legendary WW2 ace.
He was concentrated for the preparation of new soviet pilots of Mig-15. His work, as we know was very succesfull in this role ;)

Apart from these 62 victories, Ivan Kozhedub also was forced to shoot down two U.S. P-51 Mustangs that mistakenly attacked his La-7 on one occasion. Both these P-51 losses have been verified by USAAF sources.

I found out a few interesting details from this combat:


http://www.airwar.ru/history/aces/ace2ww/pilots/kogedub.html
During April 1945 by the barrage turn Kozhedub drove off the pair of German fighters from American B -17, but it was attacked by the escort fighters, which opened fire from the large distance. With the half roll Kozhedub swiftly attacked nearest machine. That began to smoke and with a decrease went to the side of our troops (pilot of this machine soon jumped out with the parachute and succesfully landed).
By halfloop after carrying out chandelle, from the inverted flight position, Kozhedub attacked that leading - that exploded in air.
Somewhat later he was succeeded in examining white stars in the unknown machines - these were Mustangs P-51;

As it says- do not make the good - you will not see the evil;)
So as we see the americans first mistakelly attacked the Kozhedub.
One tragical death of one american pilot and "cupturing" by the soviets was the resault of the Kozhedub mistake.
That's interesting for this mistake - the shooting of the allies fighers Kozhedub was threated by the Military Tribunal, However his commander Pavel Chupicov saved the Ivan- he simply did not reported about this incident above.

And finally: the 62 was ONLY the personal victories of Kozhedub. However it were at least 5 victories of his group what was recorded for the other young pilots - Koghedub simply gave them those victories.
http://www.airwar.ru/history/aces/ace2ww/pilots/foto/kozhed_01.jpg
His personal La-7 with 2x20 guns. Very excellent mashine. My faworite fighter in the Il-2 simulator

Cheers.

Sturmfuhrer
08-02-2007, 01:26 AM
Very interesting topic. Pls go on.
Just wanted to mention mistake I found.

"I was sent to learn to fly a new plane, the Lavochkin LaG-5"

There was no airplane with the name LaG-5, it was La-5. Looks like some union La-5 and LaGG-3.:D

Panzerknacker
08-02-2007, 09:25 AM
During April 1945 by the barrage turn Kozhedub drove off the pair of German fighters from American B -17, but it was attacked by the escort fighters, which opened fire from the large distance. With the half roll Kozhedub swiftly attacked nearest machine. That began to smoke and with a decrease went to the side of our troops (pilot of this machine soon jumped out with the parachute and succesfully landed).
By halfloop after carrying out chandelle, from the inverted flight position, Kozhedub attacked that leading - that exploded in air.
Somewhat later he was succeeded in examining white stars in the unknown machines - these were Mustangs P-51


:shock: It was true then., thanks for the information Chevan.



By why did you call this thread as the "Ivan Kozhedub VS USAAF".
May be for provocation with the our american members


Nah, that is just my stile .


There was no airplane with the name LaG-5, it was La-5. Looks like some union La-5 and LaGG-3


That was the name aplied by the germans to the La-5, they simply didnt know that Gudkov was not anymore in charge of the design.

Nickdfresh
08-02-2007, 10:31 AM
.

Nah, that is just my stile .


...

Getting your facts wrong?:lol:


Just kidding, brother.:D

Nickdfresh
08-02-2007, 10:33 AM
http://www.airwar.ru/history/aces/ace2ww/pilots/foto/kozhed_01.jpg

It's unfortunate that these incidents took place. But in heat of the moment, with a quick look, the P-51 probably resembled a Me-109 and the Soviet La-7 probably looked like a FW-190...

Panzerknacker
08-02-2007, 11:13 AM
Some info gathered in the infamous wikipedia.



As with other famous figures, mythology has sprung up around Kozhedub's life. One story is that once he encountered a group of American B-17 Flying Fortresses (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/B-17_Flying_Fortress) under attack by Luftwaffe aircraft. The story goes on to suggest that his aircraft was mistaken by American escort fighters to be enemy and attacked. Kozhedub, having no other option, defended himself by shooting two of the P-51 Mustangs (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/P-51_Mustang). So far this story isn't confirmed completely. There are certain amount of unclear facts, that can be either truth or fiction:

Gun camera footage exists that had been touted as Kozhedub's actual gun camera film from the event. However, it is highly suspect. First, the footage was shot using Zeiss (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zeiss) equipment which was used primarily by the Luftwaffe.
The aircraft shown in the video are shown with drop-tanks attached. This would seem to contradict the usual telling that Kozhedub was jumped by the P-51s, as attacking fighters would dispose of these tanks before commencing aggressive offensive maneuvers. A more likely story is that the gun camera footage was from a Luftwaffe aircraft which ambushed American aircraft in an unrelated incident. However another aircraft was shown without droptanks, which can mean that the first pilot was unable or forget to release droptanks. Or even decide not to do so.While some people in the West might think that this story was a complete propaganda it is propably not so. The very fact of those two victories was not well known from during the Soviet era as it was cut-out from the Kozhedub's biografy book published after in war-war years, while propaganda means high level of attention and "advertasing" of a fact.


And the alleged I.K guncamera of the event.

http://img224.echo.cx/img224/4439/kozhedubguncamera5kx.jpg


What about this ?

Chevan
08-02-2007, 12:46 PM
[img]
It's unfortunate that these incidents took place. But in heat of the moment, with a quick look, the P-51 probably resembled a Me-109 and the Soviet La-7 probably looked like a FW-190...
Very true Nicki ;)
Indeed the Soviet La-5 ( later La-5fn/7) was the copy of the FW designed in the soviet conditions.
This was good idea to install the newest power air-cooled engine M-82 to the LaGG-3
In reality the first La-5 was the LaGG-3 with this engine.
Having the new much more power ( additionally 75% of power) let the LaGG to fly much speedy.
Later the production of LaGG were stopped and the air plants were concentrated for the production of La/Jak fighters - the best soviet fighters of the WW2.
Here a issue about La-7


http://www.airpages.ru/cgi-bin/epg.pl?nav=ru30&page=la7
The tests of the new fighter La-7 was started in the beginning of 1944 . The airplane differed the facilitated design (at last and on airplanes of La metal spars have appeared), reinforced armament and the best aerodynamic properties. On high-speed qualities the airplane has essentially surpassed La-5FN.
On the production machines it was not possible to take into account only one recommendation reflected in the conclusion about passage by a fighter - on an airplane there was no automatic control unit of operation control of an engine-screw combination. That on FW-190 was operated by moving of one lever, on La-7 demanded manipulations of eight controls. To simplify operation control of an engine-screw combination it was possible only on La-7 from factory number 38101356 which tests passed from March, 20 till April, 8, 1945.
It was the most perfect fighter of Semyon Lavochkin and one of the best warplanes of the WW II.
In total, the fighters La-7 were built in quantity 5905 during 1944-1945.

Kovalski
08-03-2007, 01:04 AM
I don't get it.

I just can't believe that the IOs didn't tell U.S. Airmen that they may encounter Soviet planes. And that they didn't recognized the markings - a big red star. Maybe if Kozhedub wrote "I'm a russian" (in english of course) on his wings, he wouldn't have been attacked. :)

Panzerknacker
08-03-2007, 07:13 PM
I. Kozhedub Las in 1944 (Soviet aces of the WW2, Osprey aircraft of the aces)

http://img516.imageshack.us/img516/7771/kozhedubfi2.jpg


Me-262 post moved to a more logic location.

http://www.ww2incolor.com/forum/showthread.php?t=4648

Carl Schwamberger
08-05-2007, 10:56 PM
I don't get it.

I just can't believe that the IOs didn't tell U.S. Airmen that they may encounter Soviet planes. And that they didn't recognized the markings - a big red star. Maybe if Kozhedub wrote "I'm a russian" (in english of course) on his wings, he wouldn't have been attacked. :)

Warning people is one thing. Making a instant recognition or judgement in combat is another.

In simple training exercises I've seen such errors happen many times, so its easy to think such a mistake could happen in combat.

Chevan
08-06-2007, 05:24 AM
I don't get it.

I just can't believe that the IOs didn't tell U.S. Airmen that they may encounter Soviet planes. And that they didn't recognized the markings - a big red star. Maybe if Kozhedub wrote "I'm a russian" (in english of course) on his wings, he wouldn't have been attacked. :)

Mate it's quite hard to recognize the stars/cross for the distance over 1 killometer !!!
I doubt the pilots of P-51 who attacked the La-7 even could saw the stars form a such distance;)
More probably they could notice the "wrong" shape of the wings - the La-7 wings are quite different of the FW-190 wings in plane.
http://www.airpages.ru/img/fw190f_2.jpg
The FW had a more 'rectangular' wings.

Nickdfresh
08-06-2007, 12:04 PM
I wonder if there was even any training by Western aviators on aircraft recognition of Soviet types...

Chevan
08-06-2007, 12:07 PM
I wonder if there was even any training by Western aviators on aircraft recognition of Soviet types...
Sure there was training program but ONLY after the 1945 ;)

Rising Sun*
08-06-2007, 10:20 PM
Warning people is one thing. Making a instant recognition or judgement in combat is another.

In simple training exercises I've seen such errors happen many times, so its easy to think such a mistake could happen in combat.

Not always mistakes in combat, either.

There were instances of Australian and American troops firing on American planes in New Guinea when being attacked in error. I knew a bloke years ago who'd done it. Can't recall sources but I think there were at least a couple where they shot down their own planes in these situations.

I seem to recall reading of similar events elsewhere in the Pacific.

Panzerknacker
08-07-2007, 05:46 PM
I find very suspicious that (if the guncamera is correct) a P-51 attacked nimble "FW-190" with his tanks on, the more logic maneouver is to drop those.

Panzerknacker
08-07-2007, 05:51 PM
By the way I founf this interesting information regarding combat between Russiand and the USAAF.


An appendix in Seidl "Stalin's Eagles" reproduces the 82nd FG's action report of the mission, and draft of apology letter by the 15th AF which seems to reflect information from the Soviets about the incident. The P-38's attacked a Soviet column advancing in Yugoslavia, November 7, 1944, killing a Soviet Lt. Gen among other casualties and damage. Yak-9's came to the aid of the column. One P-38 was downed immediately and another after the Americans realized their mistake and were trying to withdraw.

Meantime the P-38's had claimed 2 Yak-9's destroyed, 2 probable and 1 damaged; Seidl names two Soviet pilots killed in the incident and one who parachuted.

The draft says the 82nd's commander had been relieved of command, but there's a hand written comment, "NO!" in the margin next to it. The Soviet flight leader was their 8th leading ace of the war, AI Koldunov, 46 victories.

He claimed three of the four P-38's the Soviets thought they shot down. He definitely wasn't shot for it. He eventually became the chief of the Soviet air defence service, the PVO, in the 1980's.

Interestingly though his career ended over another East-West incident: he was forced into retirement after the Mathias Rust incident in 1987 (the young German who managed to land his Cessna 172 in Red Square)

Chevan
08-08-2007, 01:53 AM
Good details Panzerknacker , thanks.
Well i wonder the P-38 were used mostly for the escorting of bombers columns
http://warplane.ru/plane/p38/small/p38j.jpg
This fighter couldn't be confused with the Germans Aircraft by the soviet pilots - simply coz the GErmans HAD nothing simular two-fuselage fighter.
ONLY the agreesive attack of the soviet columns was the reason of return fire.
BTW one interesting detail about P-38.


This was an excellent full metal mashine, however its high price was a serious deficiency in this machine. Series copy of P-38 bypassed American taxpayers approximately into 138000 dollars on the course of those days. For the comparison, the P-39 "Airacobra" cost 46000 (exactly three times cheaper), P-51 "mustang"; - 54000, and the twin-engined bomber"Mithcell" - 96000.

And as i remember the serial B-17 cost about 280 000.

Nickdfresh
08-08-2007, 01:46 PM
Good details Panzerknacker , thanks.
Well i wonder the P-38 were used mostly for the escorting of bombers columns
http://warplane.ru/plane/p38/small/p38j.jpg
This fighter couldn't be confused with the Germans Aircraft by the soviet pilots - simply coz the GErmans HAD nothing simular two-fuselage fighter.
ONLY the agreesive attack of the soviet columns was the reason of return fire.
BTW one interesting detail about P-38.

And as i remember the serial B-17 cost about 280 000.

Off the top of my head, the P-38 was used too some affect in North Africa, and in the early days if the Eighth USAAF's foray into Europe. The Germans called it "the fork-tailed devil" because of it's speed and armament. Unfortunately, the P-38 was limited by its comparatively low ceiling to that of the Luftwaffe's fighters. While she could be very effective at fighting at lower altitudes, bomber escorting was largely out of the question. I think the heating system was also ineffective, causing US pilots to freeze in their cockpits and preventing long range missions...

The P-38 however was later modified in the far east by American civilian celebrity aviator Charles Lindberg (the only American civilian pilot, outside of the "Flying Tigers," to shoot down an Axis aircraft in combat I believe) who fixed some inherent flaws in the fuel delivery system and enabling the P-38 to fly farther and faster, and the aircraft went on to have a new lease on life and a much larger impact on the Pacific War; it's biggest contributions to Europe was that it perhaps freed up P-47s and P-51s to be sent to the Eighth AAF...

Panzerknacker
08-08-2007, 09:06 PM
Good details Panzerknacker , thanks.
Well i wonder the P-38 were used mostly for the escorting of bombers columns

This fighter couldn't be confused with the Germans Aircraft by the soviet pilots - simply coz the GErmans HAD nothing simular two-fuselage fighter.
ONLY the agreesive attack of the soviet columns was the reason of return fire.
BTW one interesting detail about P-38.



That is correct, it couldnt be confused with a german type, actually the shape of the P-38 is quite unique, it coulndt be confused with anything.

I wonder how the USAAF only losed 2 aircrafts that day, at low altitude the Yak-9 is maneouvrable as hell, I think it can turn around a P-38 as a carrousel.

Yak-9s.

http://img120.imageshack.us/img120/539/f09yak903ir2.jpg

Chevan
08-09-2007, 01:25 AM
I wonder how the USAAF only losed 2 aircrafts that day, at low altitude the Yak-9 is maneouvrable as hell, I think it can turn around a P-38 as a carrousel.


MAte i think they need to be the finished idiots to continie fight with the ALLIES fighter far long time;)
Especially afte then the both side have recognized the white/red stars on the wings.;)
BTW the P-38 was not as much maneouvrable as much speedy.
They simply run away at the moment ;) - two engines of full metal P-38 could easy pass the Yak-9 even in the low altitude.
Moreover the pirsuting the Allied fighters with the evil aims - the soviet command will not greet it.

Panzerknacker
08-09-2007, 07:36 PM
They simply run away at the moment ;) - two engines of full metal P-38 could easy pass the Yak-9 even in the low altitude.



Well, that seems a probable scenario, the acceleration of the P-38 was good, The maximum sped of the Yak was 590 km/h againt 645 km/h of the Lightning