Download Carl A. Spaatz and the air war in Europe (General histories) by Richard G Davis PDF

By Richard G Davis

Carl A. Spaatz and the air battle in europe

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The remainder of the Army averaged a little less than 33 percent field-grade officers for the same period. This imbalance resulted in underrepresentation of the Air Corps’ views and lack of understanding of the Air Corps’ difficulties at the senior levels of the Army. But if the lack of field-grade officers hurt the Air Corps as an institution within the Army, in the long run it may have advanced the careers of officers within the Air Corps i t ~ e l f . 3 ~ The lack of rank within the Air Corps-even within the field grades the great majority of officers were majors-meant that officers assumed responsibility and gained experience at levels far above their actual rank.

They were thus well behind the men who joined other branches and earned their commissions months earlier. In the interwar period this placed a large percentage of Air Corps junior-grade officers at the bottom of the promotion list, with little prospect of ever reaching field grade. In 1930, 400 of the 494 Regular Army first lieutenants in the Air Corps had wartime e ~ p e r i e n c e The . ~ ~ most senior of them would have to advance 3,800 places through the captains’ ranks and one-third of the way through the entire list to reach major-a daunting prospect.

They proposed to divide Army aviation into two components: (1) observation planes normally assigned the armies, corps, mobile units, and fixed harbor defenses; and (2) remaining tactical support and striking force units grouped under the GHQ Air Force. The GHQ Air Force would operate under the wartime Army Supreme Commander (Army planning did not envisage a two-front war) to locate and attack the enemy; to assist the Army ground forces by attacking enemy rear areas; and to give direct support and cooperation, when required, to the ground forces.

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