Heinz Knoke was one of the outstanding German fighter pilots of World War II and this vivid first hand record of his experiences has become a classic among aviation memoirs, a best selling counter balance to the numerous accounts written by Allied pilots.Knoke joined the Luftwaffe on the outbreak of war, and eventually became commanding officer of a fighter wing An outstandingly brave and skillful fighter, he logged over two thousand flights, and shot down fifty two enemy aircraft He had flown over four hundred operational missions before being crippled by wounds in an astonishing last stand towards the end of the war He was awarded the Knight s Cross for his achievements In a text that reveals his intense patriotism and discipline, he describes being brought up in the strict Prussian tradition, the impact of the coming of the Nazi regime, and his own wartime career set against a fascinating study of everyday life in the Luftwaffe, and of the high morale of the force until its disintegration.In a postscript provided for this edition, Heinz Knoke writes of the struggle to survive after the war in Germany, and his building of a new life Now that the Berlin Wall has been torn down, his memoirs are set in a new perspective, both a valuable contribution to aviation literature and a moving human story....
|Title||:||I Flew for the Fuhrer|
|Publisher||:||Frontline Books March 19, 2012|
|Number of Pages||:||188 pages|
|File Size||:||998 KB|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
I Flew for the Fuhrer Reviews
Not as informative and dramatic as the many books I've read written by American and English fighter pilots, but I still found very, interesting Knocke's contrasting career in the German air force. I guess that the book was just too short for the detailed history I sought. Other than that I have no major criticism. One had to ignore his Nazism, but after all, he is giving us the enemy side. I found this account one of the few German pilot survivor's experiences very informative, making his book worthwhile and recommend it for others also seeking views and info from the "other" side.
This book is filled with action, particularly as it evolved high within the clouds over Europe during World War II. I enjoyed the author's attention to detail, and found the read greatly enhanced by his efforts to be honest, ..forthright in the "telling" of the story of his experiences that included an overview of his life right through the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989. He was proud to have been a part of his squadron as he engaged in many a dogfight with Russians, British, and American pilots in many theaters of conflict. He was brutally honest in defining his experiences and perspectives. Also, the story moves right along at a pleasing pace that keeps the read engaged right to the end of the read.
Knocke spent the majority of the war in action. Despite the title, he flew for Germany, not Hitler. An unrepentant National Socialist with a sense of honor. Read the book carefully, it is clear why Germany lost. Not because of any lack of bravery or dedication on the part of her warriors, rather because the command structure was totally unprepared for a six year war and had no clue about the ramifications of going to war against the Russians.
One cannot but admire the bravery of the luftwaffe...it would seem they fought a "cleaner" war than the ground troops..it is frightening to accept the level to which younger Germans were indoctinated and the fact that right up to almost the end of the war they believed in the Fuhrer and the wonder weapons he would produce to beat back the Allies..their lack of knowledge of the activities of the concentration camps seems almost incomprehensible but it seems no one was overly concerned about what went on at home ...Knocke seems to have lived for flying and the war gave him that opportunity...the book was excellent in its description of air combat
I also have this book in paper back. I bought this version as some of my other information suggested that my paperback was an abbreviation. Apart from the cover picture this is identical with the paperback...nevertheless still an excellent autobiography from a fighter pilot who survived the war with most of his action being on the Western Front. Some interesting insights into the politics and infighting within the Luftwaffe.
This book is interesting in that its first English edition was published in the mid-50's. Knoke's account of his exploits in the Western Front show that the Luftwaffe was doomed to lose the war against the might of the Allied air forces. Still the Luftwaffe "experten" were hard foes and their experience managed to get some of them through. Knoke was seriously injured by the end of the war and endured its last months on ground duties. Recommended to all interested in military aviation.
I enjoyed this work. He lived a charmed life during the war. His wounds saved him like the other few aces that flew for Germany. Anyone who is interested in WWll history would enjoy this book. It demonstrates how luck in combat is as important as skill. It also shows us that the warrior, the men who put their lives on the line demonstrate a commonality of character, self sacrifice, and honor. We have been enriched by men like Heinz Knocke a d the story of his life.
If you have a consuming interest in the European WWII air war this is mandatory reading for gaining a better perspective and understanding of what took place in the sky over Germany and environs. However, no book will ever put even a dent in what for us will always remain incomprehensible. If you see little that is incomprehensible about what took place in the skies over Germany, especially for the B-17 crews during the 1943s, I guarantee that you will begin to comprehend the incomprehensible if you will risk your peace of mind and read "Combat Crew: The Story of 25 Combat Missions Over Europe From the Daily Journal of a B-17 gunner."