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Re: Shooting Star
I don't think that's an accurate claim number for F-80's only. The USAF
official credits list credits F-80's with only 4 MiG-15's, though another 14
prop a/c (mostly early in the war v. the North Koreans). Official losses of
F-80's to MiG's were 11, the 14 includes 3 pre-MiG in June/July 1950.
However that seems a miscount, only one case of an F-80 downed by a Yak can
be found: July 19, 1950. One RF-80 was also lost to a MiG.
Of the four F-80 victories, the famous first victory Nov 8, 1950, plus the
one Dec 1 51 don't check out in Russian records, the latter could
conceivably have been a Chinese or NK machine. The one March 17 1951 does (a
collision between a MiG and F-80 both sides recorded), as does the one July
29 '51 IMO (the Soviet pilot Fokin was wounded and belly landed his plane, a
std definition of lost is couldn't return to a friendly base wheels down,
I'd count that a loss). But besides the official victories, just in the
period Nov 1950-May 1951 F-80's were responsible for up to 5 other MiG
losses by my count. One is mysterious: Feb 23 the Russians say they lost a
MiG battling F-80's, an RF-80 was attacked by MiG's, but had no apparent
means to inflict this loss, yet one US record says it did claim to have
damaged a MiG. These extra cases are from Russian accounts and also each
show up in US records but the pilots just didn't have enough evidence for a
confirmed credit. In this period the true exchange ratio was 6-7 MiG's
downed for 4-5 F-80's lost. I haven't studied the later periods enough to
say whether F-80's might have downed additional uncreditted MiG's and this
is generally difficult after Sep 51 as unreported Chinese losses are more
likely from then.
On F-80's losses, I agree the 11 is not scripture. However one issue is just
carelessness in the totals. As I said I'm stumped on finding 3 losses in
June/July I don't think there were, also in finding 2 in March, I think
there was really only one. As far as counting based on a source like Korwald
I studied the Nov '50-May 51 period carefully, checking back into original
records. I found two cases where losses not in the total should or might be
counted. Dec 4 1950 an F-80 was damaged and not repaired in combat with
MiG's (it downed a MiG not credited though). Dec 12 1950 an F-80 attributed
to AAA could conceivably have been downed by MiG's, though the unit said
there were MiG's some flights engaged them around the same time, but the
lost plane was said to be directly hit a heavy round AAA over Sinuiju a/f.
All other cases where MiG's claimed and F-80's were lost to other causes,
the other causes stand IMO, based on times, places, circumstances and
combats with MiG's w/o any losses by other F-80 units at the same time/place
the Russians claimed.
As for Diego methods of simply matching Korwald losses to MiG claims
ignoring the causes given in Korwald, I'll speak a little more frankly than
usual: I think it's bogus, not real research, and just confuses people. Just
the other day I saw a note from an F-80 vet on Korean War Project commenting
how Diego's attribution to MiG's of the loss of Lt. Louis Esposito, 35 FBS
to AAA actually on Oct 22, 1951 is bogus. The main battle between straight
wings and MiG's (accounting for all official MiG victories) that day was at
another place, another time of day, involved F-84's of the 136 FBG (none of
which were lost) not F-80's, and Esposito's surviving sdn mates clearly saw
AAA rise from the target and down him. But they, reading Diego's article
(about the ace Shchukin) thought the *Russians* claimed Esposito by name,
which is not so. It's just Diego ignoring the attributions in Korwald and
matching up by date alone.
----- Original Message -----
From: "Love Shack" <Home@DanSources.com>
Sent: Tuesday, December 30, 2003 10:12 AM
Subject: Shooting Star
> Picked this up from Mike Yared's site and picked up this quote
> "Despite being a relatively unsophisticated aircraft, the F-80 did manage
> maintain a 2 to 1 kill ratio over the MiG, claiming 31 of the Soviet
> fighters destroyed to the loss of 14 to the guns of the MiGs "
> I get the feeling from other records comments by you and Diego
> that the F80 and F84 were shot down more then this statement says.
> Dan Fahey