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Re: revising air war kill tallies
I think you're right, what you are discussing has only to do with MiG loss
and US claims, nothing to do with US losses and MiG claims. However in my
experience there can be a tendency of some people to want to draw
equivalence of the accuracy of Soviet aces' claims with those of US aces and
this is where the two issues can get tangled up. I agree they are actually
unrelated since the process of verification of claims differed among AF's.
One thing to add to what I said before. I also found in the early period of
the MiG war, when only the Soviets were involved and their losses seem to be
completely documented, that a fair % of MiG losses did not correspond to any
confirmed victory by the US.
That is less than 70-75% of US confirmed victories case by case represented
a destroyed MiG, but in addition some "probables" and "damaged" did
represent a downed MiG.
So for a given ace, less than 70-75% of his confirmed victories may check
out in enemy records (if we had all those records and could be sure they
were complete). But then 1 or 2 other victories might have been scored by
him in cases when he was only awarded a "probable" or "damaged".
I can't give a concrete example for an ace but here's a fluke example for a
type of a/c, the F-80. In the period Nov 1 1950-May 20 1951, 7 MiG-15's were
lost in combat with F-80's per Russian accounts (2 collided with each
other, another with an F-80 and 2 others are assumed in Russian accounts to
be loss of control but admitted to be during combat with F-80's and US
accounts say the F-80's were shooting at the MiG's, just not enough evidence
for a confirmed kill). Only 2 MiG's were credited to F-80's and one of
those, Russell Brown's famous Nov 8 1950 victory, did not result in a MiG
loss! So only 50% of F-80 confirmed victories in the period check out in
Russian records yet F-80 pilots still "underclaimed" overall.
----- Original Message -----
From: "jose castillo" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sent: Friday, November 14, 2003 7:15 PM
Subject: Re: revising air war kill tallies
> what i really am trying to do is work only with the
> USAF kills at this point. so the overclaims by the
> russians shouldn't affect this, right? how do you guys
> do this exactly? wouldn't you take the kill claims by
> the americans & compare it to admitted losses by the
> soviets & chinese? how would the erroneous russian &
> chinese overclaims relate to examining not their
> kills, but the USAF kills? maybe i'm missing
> something? i'm all ears to learn of the methodology!
> --- AMPSOne@aol.com wrote:
> > Jose,
> > I've been following the thread and must say that I
> > have had a long running
> > exchange with Diego on the subject.
> > Alas, the quote you cite is from one of the Russian
> > books as reason why their
> > claims are valid and the US ones are not, and at the
> > end of the day there
> > appears to be an overclaiming rate of between 6 and
> > 10 on the part of the Soviet
> > pilots. The Chinese are much worse, as they appear
> > to have used "KGB Math" and
> > cut their own losses by 50% while multiplying US
> > losses by a factor of 5. The
> > North Korean claims (last I saw them they were
> > something like 5,800 shot down
> > in air-to-air combat) are patently ridiculous.
> > US claims seem to be about 80-100% accurate for
> > USN/USMC ones (there are only
> > 23 as separate services) and about 70% for the USAF.
> > But at the end of the day, it's still a "who shot
> > John" he-said-he-said
> > affair. Joe Brennan and I have been looking at it
> > from two sides (he has pretty
> > good US records, and I have most of the Soviet ones
> > released so far) and it's
> > pretty easy to figure out who was cooking the books.
> > Cookie Sewell
> > AMPS
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