Operation Chastise and Dambusters – Germany

On the night of 16-17 May 1943, Wing Commander Guy Gibson led 617 Squadron of the Royal Air Force on an audacious bombing raid to destroy three dams in the Ruhr valley, the industrial heartland of Germany. The mission was codenamed Operation ‘Chastise’. The dams were fiercely protected. Torpedo nets in the water stopped underwater attacks and anti-aircraft guns defended them against enemy bombers. But 617 Squadron had a secret weapon: the ‘bouncing bomb’.

Diagram depicting the Dambusters raid.

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The Möhne dam in Germany’s Ruhr valley secured the water supply for much of the surrounding area. Water from its reservoir was also used to generate electricity.

The three main targets were the Möhne, Eder and Sorpe dams.The Möhne dam was a curved ‘gravity’ dam and was 40m high and 650m long. There were tree-covered hills around the reservoir, but any attacking aircraft would be exposed on the immediate approach. The Eder dam was of similar construction but was an even more challenging target. Its winding reservoir was bordered by steep hills. The only way to approach would be from the north. The Sorpe was a different type of dam and had a watertight concrete core 10m wide. At each end of its reservoir the land rose steeply, and there was also a church spire in the path of the attacking aircraft.

https://www.iwm.org.uk/history/the-incredible-story-of-the-dambusters-raid

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Barnes Wallis’s bouncing bomb is used during Operation Chastise – the Dam busters Raid – to destroy three dams in the Ruhr area of Germany. The raid was considered a success, knocking out hydroelectric power, cutting off the water supply to industry and causing devastation through flooding. The operation also, however, cost the allies many lives, and the bouncing bomb was not used again.

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Operation Chastise was the official name for the attacks on German dams on 17 May 1943 in the Second World War using a specially developed “bouncing bomb”. The attack was carried out by Royal Air Force No. 617 Squadron, subsequently known as the Dambusters. The Moehne and Eder dams were breached in these attacks, causing a catastrophic flooding of the Ruhr valley, while the Sorpe dam sustained only minor damage.

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The ‘Dambusters’. The true story behind one of World War II’s most daring bombing missions.

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MORE VIDEOS


The original black & white titles for the 1955 war film “The Dam Busters” re-created in HD colour.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zyBLd1eRgts

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Re-Union

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qqgAG-pRce8

4 gedagtes oor “Operation Chastise and Dambusters – Germany”

  1. […] On the night of 16-17 May 1943, Wing Commander Guy Gibson led 617 Squadron of the Royal Air Force on an audacious bombing raid to destroy three dams in the Ruhr valley, the industrial heartland of Germany. The mission was codenamed Operation ‘Chastise’. The dams were fiercely protected. Torpedo nets in the water stopped underwater attacks and anti-aircraft guns defended them against enemy bombers. But 617 Squadron had a secret weapon: the ‘bouncing bomb’.Operation Chastise and Dambusters – Germany […]

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  2. […] The success of the operation to destroy a number of reservoirs in Germany which became known as Operation Chastise, the RAF had a very special method. The specialty of this operation began with the use of selected squadrons, the use of specially modified Avro Lancaster bombers.     The crew was selected from various countries (Canada, US, New Zealand, UK), the tactics that were deployed were also specialized, and used specially designed bombs. As planned, the attack would be carried out at night during the full moon when the lake water was at its peak.The Bouncing Bomb – Operation Chastise*On the night of 16-17 May 1943, Wing Commander Guy Gibson led 617 Squadron of the Royal Air Force on an audacious bombing raid to destroy three dams in the Ruhr valley, the industrial heartland of Germany. The mission was codenamed Operation ‘Chastise’. The dams were fiercely protected. Torpedo nets in the water stopped underwater attacks and anti-aircraft guns defended them against enemy bombers. But 617 Squadron had a secret weapon: the ‘bouncing bomb’.Operation Chastise and Dambusters – Germany […]

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