Segment 8

Annotation

Armanini describes how he thought regarding his survival. He describes his sense of confidence and also his sense of unpredictability. Armanini describes how at first the men were excited to go to Regensburg, and he explains how that enthusiasm waned as the Germans shot the army air force bombers down by the dozens. He also describes how the German fighters changed their tactics in how they attacked the B-17's [Annotator’s Note: American B-17 Flying Fortress bombers]. The Germans decided that attacking the bombers head on was a better tactic for them so that they could possibly kill the pilots without having to actually shoot the bomber down. The Germans would come en masse and attack the lead plane in order to eliminate the leader of the mission.Armanini discusses aerial gunnery and re-tells his story of his one and only aerial victory. He talks about how the empty shell casings covered the floor of the aircraft during the Regensburg Raid. He talks about how the Army offset the massive loss in bomber crews at Regensburg and Schweinfurt by saying that the bomber crews shot down over 300 German fighters during the double strike. Armanini gives an excellent description of how aerial victory claims can be over exaggerated by several bomber crews at one time.Armanini describes how he felt about bombing the German population and his true feelings towards the Germans. He didn't feel bad about bombing civilians, he felt that if he killed enough people the war would end and he would get to go home.Armanini then describes the war as being like a football game, you want to help your teammates and you want to do your job, do it well, and not be a coward. He describes how he was afraid before the mission, but not during the missions.Armanini describes the loss of his best friend Bill Griffith on the mission to Leipzig. He talks about Griffith at length and describes how he witnessed his best friend's plane get shot down over the target. Joe then goes on to tell how he found out what happened to his best friend and how his father took the news of the loss of his son. 

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