Airborne monitoring and plotting of Allied radar emissions continued over the North Sea during the summer of 1944, apparently by attaching the Köthen signals trials establishment’s own aircraft to 3.(F)/122 in Holland. The Generalnachrichtenführer III. Abteilung (Signals Intelligence Division) reported to the Luftwaffe Command Staff on 14 June that:
On 15 June, 3.(F)/122 had reported a strength of 3 (2) Ju 88, 7 (3) Ju 188 and 3 (2) Ju 88. It is not clear why there were two sets of Ju 88 figures unless, as sometimes happened, different models were counted separately. In the first set of figures W.Nr. 1751 is stated to be unserviceable, in the second set the u/s machine is W.Nr. 430259 (a D-7 which had been ready for collection from Buc on 20 May). The unserviceable Ju 188s were all F-1 models: 280194, 280217, 2219 and 281620. From this it appears that whilst Köthen’s radar monitors may have received support from 3.(F)/122 they were not accounted part of the Staffel. Nor is there any hint of eletronic reconnaissance in 3.(F)/122’s orders for the night of 16/17 June which seem more directed toward identifying any second Allied landing operation:
Flying Mosquito Mk. XIX “VY•C” of No. 85 Squadron, F/O P.S. Kendall and F/L C.R. Hill took off from Swannington, Norfolk at 2205 GMT on an intruder patrol to Soesterberg and Deelen in Holland. They arrived in their patrol area within the hour, finding both airfields unlit. At 2326 however, Soesterberg was illuminated and an aircraft was seen to be landing with its navigation lights on. As the Mosquito moved to intercept, a red Verey light was fired and a second aircraft was seen to put on its navigation lights and begin to go round again.
Kendall gave chase, lowering flaps and landing gear to reduce speed, coming down to 140 IAS (225 km/h) at an altitude of 700 feet (213 m) as their target was turning into the flarepath for another landing attempt. Bursts of one and two seconds were fired as they closed in from 150 to 100 yards (137–91 m) with a ½-ring’s deflection, securing strikes on the enemy’s wing and fuselage. Now on fire, the hostile climbed to 2,000 ft (900 m), its navigation lights still on, before diving vertically to explode about 180 m short of the runway at 2330 GMT. Breaking away to take cine film of the burning wreck, Kendall and Hill resumed their patrol for another 20 minutes before returning to base, landing at 0043.
Although they had claimed an Me 110, the Mosquito’s crew had in fact destroyed a Ju 188 E-1, W.Nr. 260347 (GJ+SU). On the morning of the 17th, an Obltn. Sokowski (“currently 3.(F)/122") called Gen. Nafü III. Abt. and his account closely matched that of Kendall and Hill. The Ju 188 which was:
… returning from a radar-monitoring flight over the North Sea, at 0132 [GMT+2] on the approach to Soesterberg aerodrome was shot down by an enemy night fighter at 200 m altitude. The aircraft had made two circuits with its navigation lights switched on. The airfield was aware of the presence of 4–5 enemy night fighters in the vicinity. Aircraft totally destroyed by fire on impact. Crew dead.
Sokowski identified the crew but these are the ranks, forenames and spellings as recorded by the German War Graves Association, which differ somewhat in their spelling from his versions:
Appended to the file note of Sokowski’s call was a note that his Ju 188 was currently undergoing its 25-hour checks, after which it would be flown over to Köthen for an overhaul of its electronics. In addition, Obltn. Merker had proposed exchanging Obltn. Kaiser of I./KG 3 for Sokowski. The former, with 180 war flights, very good technical knowledge and “extremely interested in the radar-monitoring service” was thought better suited to fly the Ju 188. On the 18th, the Technical Officer of II.(Flugfunk)/Ln. Vers. Regt. Köthen requested the Gen. Nafü to arrange for the urgent replacement of the destroyed aircraft.
Work was already in hand to fit out Ju 388 L-0, W.Nr. 3000006 (PG+YF) for the monitoring role. A telegram of 24 June set out the equipment allocated for the role:
The radar-monitoring sets still outstanding from the original requirement would be allocated as they arrived and were to be fetched from Ob.d.L. signals control centre at Potsdam-Eiche. Three days after this the II./Ln. Vers. Regt. was notified that it had been allocated a Viktor receiver and a Korfu 812 (centimetric radar warning set) for installation in a radar-monitoring Ju 188, GF+SZ.
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