B-17 Bomber flying around

9/21/2008:

hoboken-b-17-bomber-flying-overhead.jpg

Most of you have seen this low-flying B-17 Bomber flying around all weekend.

Frankly, myself (as well as other 411 readers) have been a smidge too lazy to even look up what it’s doing all day long.

My gut tells me it some kind of flying tour (such as this one) – but couldn’t find anything specific locally. (You don’t want to know why I’m such a slug this weeked.. ugh)

And for my friend that didn’t believe a B-17 could take off from Teterboro Airport, here’s a video shot last year of exactly that:

Anyone have a clue where this thing is coming from?

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23 Comments on "B-17 Bomber flying around"

brewbrew
Member
brewbrew

hey no one is doubting the globs and globs of historical facts blurted all over this chain and the fact that it is sweet the 1st time you see it, but the thing is down right bothersome when i try and enjoy a little ryder cup with my slider open and i have adjust the friggin volume up and down all day. do it 3 times a day not 25.

HansBrix
Member
HansBrix

Yup. Curtis LeMay’s B-29 campaign in the Pacific was terrifyingly ruthless. Few people truly understand how the a-bombs actually saved lives by helping to cut short the almost nightly firebombing of Japanese population centers, which would have continued through October 1945/Olympic had Hirohito not said uncle.

Two great books by Max Hastings, Armageddon and Retribution are not to be missed if WWII is a hobby.

I’m glad some people chimed in to express appreciation for old military aviation. I was starting to feel like a geek going to local airshows and all.

Alehead
Member
Alehead

B-17 was designed as a ‘precision’ bomber. They actually were normally used to hit military value targets in daylight and a fair amount of effort was used to minimize civilian casualties. Precision didn’t work as well as hoped in the 1940s and flattening cities was only done later in the war, after Germany launched V1 and V2 terror attacks on London. And the B-17 was initially designed as an anti-shipping (as in enemy naval warships) weapon, so attacking cities was not envisioned when it was being designed. All that said you are right that the US has been lucky to avoid these types of attacks, some of the ‘conventional’ bombing raids made the toll of human lives lost to atomic bombs look small in comparison (primarily Tokyo and Dresden). Sorry about the details – WW2 is a hobby of mine so I certainly don’t see the few planes remaining flying as amusement park rides – more as a memorial to all those who served on them in the service of our country.

dont-cha-know
Member
dont-cha-know

yes, it was very “cool” to see this antique airplane flying around, but lest we lose our perspective, let’s keep in mind what the purpose of this machine was. when employed as designed, it left behind a trail of human carnage and rubble. other than at pearl harbor, we americans have been quite fortunate never to have been on the receiving end of an air bombing attack, and thus are quite desensitized to the horror of it. there’s something a little creepy about setting this thing up as an amusement park ride.

Alehead
Member
Alehead

Per the request above, the worst day for B-17s in Europe was when they bombed Schweinfurt, trying to disrupt German ball-bearing production. 60 bombers were shot down, each bomber with a crew of 10. Also, the plane was not a conversion from a passenger plane, but was specifically developed as a high speed, long distance bomber. It also carried 12 or 13 machine guns in the version that was flying over Hoboken on the weekend so absolutely should have had no problem with the helicopter. One of my all time favorite planes and enjoyed watching it buzz around on the weekend.

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