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This wartime photograph from the Library of Congress shows a wretched lineup of derelict Messerschmitt Bf 109 fighters destroyed during the North Africa Campaign. Once the pride of the German Luftwaffe during World War Two, their ruined hulks like abandoned and thoroughly wrecked on a desolate airfield in Libya. The German aircraft are believed to have been photographed in 1942 after the end of the 241-day Siege of Tobruk, which culminated in an Allied victory on November 27, 1941. According to the photo caption, the battered Bf 109 fuselage nearest the camera wears the markings of III. Gruppe (Group), and is understood to have been on charge with Jagdgeschwader 27 in support of the German army’s formidable Afrika Korps.


Messerschmitt Bf 109E-1 of Oberleutnant Paul Temme, Gruppe Adjutant of I/ JG 2 ‘Richtofen’, which crashed near Shoreham aerodrome in Sussex on 13 August 1940.


Men of the RAF Regiment assist an RAF intelligence officer to salvage important parts from a Messerschmitt Me 410 photographic reconnaissance aircraft, shot down on the banks of the Sangro River, Italy. The Me 410 A-3 from 2(F)./122 (Wk.Nr. 10253, F6+QK) was shot down by fighters and belly landed in the Sangro River while on a recconnaisance mission over the front lines in the Foggia-Bari-Termoli area on 26 November 1943. The crew, Ofw. Arthur Kammberger and Uffz. Vitus Mirlbach was captured.


Soldiers pose with Messerschmitt Bf 109E-4 (W.Nr. 5587) ‘Yellow 10’ of 6./JG 51 ‘Molders’, which crash-landed at East Langdon in Kent, 24 August 1940. The pilot, Oberfeldwebel Beeck, was captured unhurt.


Army officers inspect the wreckage of Messerschmitt Bf 109E-1 (W.Nr. 3367) “Red 14” of 2./JG52, which crash-landed in a wheatfield at Mays Farm, Selmeston, near Lewes in Sussex, 12 August 1940. Its pilot, Unteroffizier Leo Zaunbrecher, was captured.
France, Normandy June 1944 German soldiers inspecting an Allies Horsa Glider.

German Sd. Kfz. 124 Wespe ("Wasp") self-propelled howitzer with its crew.

German StuG III knocked out November 1943

1945, Germany, Me262B-1a/U1 - now the hands of Americans - equipped with radar FuG-218 Neptune

Captured KV-1 heavy tank fails to make it across a wooden bridge, Russia,1941
Fi103R Reichenberg (without warhead) captured by British troops in 1945

Central Russia 1943, Parade of StuG III's

Machine-gun crew of the German "Grossdeutschland Division".

An Afrikakorps’ Kubelwagen April 1943

Junkers Ju87 G '43 Kanonenvogel Anti-Tank Stuka Version. 1943.
Interesting how so many German troops garrisoning France, were still wearing early pattern uniforms in mid 1944. In Italy and the Eastern front, these were usually replaced with 1943 pattern uniforms and boots due to wear from the tempo of combat.

In the wooded countryside close to the Aller River in Germany, a small action took place between a lone Tiger and Comet tanks belonging to 3rd Royal Tank Regiment, 11th Armoured Division. The action took place in April 1945, close to the end of the war. Indeed by this time scattered German units were fighting where the opportunity occurred, not always under any sort of organised control. Instead small enemy parties were being encountered in the woods, often armed with hand held anti-tank weapons or on occasions with actual tanks. One could never be sure when it might happen, so it paid to be on the alert at all times.

Kampfgruppe Schulze
As an example Major Paul Schulze decided to form Kampfgruppe Schulze, using six Tiger tanks from the Tank School and five Panther tanks from Aufstellungsstab Lehrtruppe, all that remained of the Panzerlehr demonstration division which had been based at Fallingbostel. Their first collision was with the British 6th Airborne Division, which accounted for four of the Panthers and one Tiger hit in the turret by a PIAT so that it was unable to traverse. Then they encountered leading elements of 5th (US) Armored Division, which accounted for the last Panther and two of the remaining Tigers.
Of the other Tigers one was hit and knocked out so that in the end only the one Tiger, now commanded by Major Schulze himself, was still in fighting trim. It disposed of some tanks and a few American lorries but it was running out of fuel and, in the end, was blown up to prevent it from falling into Allied hands as the crew went on their way on foot. That was the end of Kampfgruppe Schulze.


Another view of the Tiger knocked out by 3RTR.
Panther of the 12th SS Panzer Division knocked out in Normandy - 1944
After the failure of the 1st Abteilung's 1st and 4th Companies of the 12th SS Panzer Regiemnt to seize Bretteville-l'Orgueilleuse on the night of June 8-9, 1944, SS-Oberfuhrer (later SS-Brigadefuhrer) Kurt "Panzer" Meyer ordered the recently arrived 3rd Company to attack Norrey in a daring daylight armored thrust. Again outpacing their infantry with orders to stop only to fire, the Panthers turned from the Caen-Bayeux Highway into the fields to attack the 1st Battalion, The Regina Rifle Regiment, 3rd Canadian Division. However, expecting the Canadians to open fire with their 6-pounder 57mm (2.24 inch) anti-tank guns and thus turning towards them to put their 80mm frontal armor to the Canadians, the Panthers under Hauptmann Luedemann exposed their side and rear flanks to fire from nine Canadian Shermans of C Squadron, 25th Armored Delivery "Elgin Regiment" who were bringing replacement tanks as reinforcements from Juno Beach. The Elgins' tanks included Sherman Fireflies armed with a 17-pounder 77mm (3 inch) anti-tank gun. Seven Panthers were destroyed; fifteen of thirty-five crewmen were killed; the rest were burned or wounded.

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