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Overrated? Underrated?

February 2024
1min read


Fredric Smoler must know that calling the B-17 bomber overrated is risky. He limited his opinion to the question of whether it met its design criteria. In the opinion of this B-17 pilot who flew over Germany and France and back thirty-two times, the B-17 far exceeded whatever the designers may have had in mind. As for the capability of the B-17—and its guns were a basic part, especially when massed in close formation—well, ask the German fighters. Our B-17s brought a big bunch of aircrews home, for which I am forever grateful.

Overrated? Ha! Fred, were you an envious B-24 pilot?

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