July 15, 2013
Meet the Night Witches of World War II

The [588th Night Bomber Regiment of the Soviet Air Forces] was the most highly decorated female unit in that force, flying 30,000 missions over the course of four years — and dropping, in total, 23,000 tons of bombs on invading German armies. Its members, who ranged in age from 17 to 26, flew primarily at night, making do with planes that were — per their plywood-and-canvas construction — generally reserved for training and crop-dusting. They often operated in stealth mode, idling their engines as they neared their targets and gliding to the bomb release point. As a result, their planes made little more than soft “whooshing” noises as they flew by.
Those noises reminded the Germans, apparently, of the sound of a witch’s broomstick. So the Nazis began calling the female fighter pilots Nachthexen: “night witches.” They were loathed. And they were feared. Any German pilot who downed a “witch” was automatically awarded an Iron Cross.
Read more.

Meet the Night Witches of World War II

The [588th Night Bomber Regiment of the Soviet Air Forces] was the most highly decorated female unit in that force, flying 30,000 missions over the course of four years — and dropping, in total, 23,000 tons of bombs on invading German armies. Its members, who ranged in age from 17 to 26, flew primarily at night, making do with planes that were — per their plywood-and-canvas construction — generally reserved for training and crop-dusting. They often operated in stealth mode, idling their engines as they neared their targets and gliding to the bomb release point. As a result, their planes made little more than soft “whooshing” noises as they flew by.

Those noises reminded the Germans, apparently, of the sound of a witch’s broomstick. So the Nazis began calling the female fighter pilots Nachthexen: “night witches.” They were loathed. And they were feared. Any German pilot who downed a “witch” was automatically awarded an Iron Cross.

Read more.

  1. lettlemetons reblogged this from theatlantic
  2. maenades reblogged this from misereres
  3. midnightsson reblogged this from theatlantic and added:
    this is a little more complete article.
  4. skarsild reblogged this from theatlantic
  5. biness reblogged this from bornthisgayyy and added:
    Whoa
  6. rachelatarms reblogged this from theatlantic
  7. sillydwyer reblogged this from cellah-door
  8. cellah-door reblogged this from bornthisgayyy
  9. bornthisgayyy reblogged this from theatlantic
  10. iseulttoinjury reblogged this from iseulttoinjury
  11. homegrrl reblogged this from theatlantic
  12. gynapantz reblogged this from ohtoska
  13. communist-slut-wafflez reblogged this from ohtoska
  14. ohtoska reblogged this from theatlantic and added:
    Forever reblogging this
  15. gardenformybed reblogged this from theatlantic
  16. feign-retreat reblogged this from theatlantic
  17. spart117mc reblogged this from theatlantic
  18. rincondelcarajo reblogged this from theatlantic
  19. rulesofthemodernlady reblogged this from theatlantic
  20. starwhovian4sher reblogged this from pyromaniac-smartass
  21. rbgianfar reblogged this from britishtales
  22. spoopy-demigods reblogged this from britishtales
  23. pyromaniac-smartass reblogged this from britishtales
  24. dahell-she-want reblogged this from britishtales
  25. britishtales reblogged this from hypatos
  26. thehogwartskhaleesi reblogged this from hypatos