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File - MEDC - Battle of the Ebro, Summer 1938, Air Operations

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File Name: Battle of the Ebro, Summer 1938, Air Operations

File Submitter: broncepulido

File Submitted: 17 Oct 2009

File Category: MEDC


Battle of the Ebro, Air Operations, near 14 August 1938.

For use with the HCE World Wars (HCWW) database.

Image: The museum at the former Spanish civil war airfield at La Sénia in the very south of the Catalonia region features this two-dimensional mock-up of the Bf 109B-2 as flown by Harro Harder, commander of Fighter Group 88 of the Legion Condor and participant at the 1936 Olympic Games. From Wikipedia Commons.

Air Strikes and some AAA added in the new uploaded file.

The fight for the air dominance in the first days of the II Spanish Republic last offensive.

After the "coming to the sea/llegada al mar" by the Nationalist land forces in Vinaroz (15 April 1938)(ZVa), the Republic owned territory was divided in two parts.

The Republican land operations initiated 25 July 1938, and were centrated in the river Ebro crossing and staigned in the take of the cross-roads town of Gandesa (ABa).

14 August 1938 marks the first encounter with the new Polikarpov I-16 Type 10 Rata/Mosca.

This is a scenario only historically inspired, I regret. The fragmentary data, bad records, erroneously transcripted airfield names in very obscure and secondary places, confuse airfield denomination (as example, the mentionated case of the twin airfield of Sanjurjo/Valenzuela/Garrapinillos/Zaragoza) and constant controversial issues about everything prevents more precision in the orders of battle and number of planes employed.

The aim is the same for the two sides, shot down enemy planes, to bomb enemy airbases (historically also direct support of land forces, not represented), and to obtain air supremacy to guarantee so the success in the terrestrial actions.

About the command, control and communications issue, remember in this time very few planes where radio equipped.


Some units and bases claimed as identified:

Nationalist side:


1, 2, 3 and 5 Staffeln J/88 Legion Condor, La Cenia (ZWa) and his dispersion airfields Alcala de Chivert (ZSa) and Cati (ZRa).


1, 2, 3 and 4 Staffeln K/88 Legion Condor (He.111B-1/B-2/E-1), Sanjurjo/Valenzuela/Garrapinillos/Zaragoza (ZXa) (Actually a twin base Sanjurjo (German)/Valenzuela(Italian/Spanish), years later became Zaragoza Air Base).


A/88 Legion Condor, Vinaroz (ZVa) (*).


AS/88 Legion Condor and Grupo 2-G-62/73, Pollensa (ZYa).


XXXV Gruppo Autonomo Mixto (-) (230 and 231 Squadriglia, BR.20), 21 Stormo Bombardamento Pesante, XXIV and XXV Gruppi "Pipistrelli" (213, 214, 215 and 216 Squadriglia, S.81) , Aviazione Legionaria, Tudela (ZTa) (*).


Escuadrilla 8-E-3 (CR.32), Tudela (ZTa) (x).


XXXV Gruppo Autonomo Mixto (-), 65 Squadriglia (Ba.65), Puig Moreno (ZLa).


Grupo 10-G-25 (5xHe-111B-1), Leon (ZQa).


X Gruppo Autonomo Caccia "Baleari" (101 and 102 Squadriglia, some elements in La Alcudia (*)(ZPa ), 8 Stormo Bombardamento Veloce, XXVII and XXVIII Gruppi "Falchi delle Baleari" (18, 52, 10 and 19 Squadriglia, S.79), Aviazione Legionaria, Son San Juan/Palma de Mallorca (ZUa).


3 Stormo Caccia (-), VI Gruppo Caccia "Gamba di Ferro" (31, 32 and 33 Squadriglia), XVI Gruppo Caccia "La Cucaracha" (24, 25 and 26 Squadriglia), 111 Stormo Bombardamento Veloce, XXIX and XXX Gruppi "Sparvieri" (280, 289, 281 and 285 Squadriglia, S.79), Aviazione Legionaria, Valenzuela/Zaragoza (ZXa).


3 Stormo Caccia (-), XXIII Gruppo Caccia "Asso di Bastoni" (18, 19 and 20 Squadriglia), Teruel (ZKa).


XXII Gruppo Autonomo Oservazione Aerea "Le Linci" (120 and 128 Squadriglia, Ro-37bis), Squadriglia Autonoma Caccia e Mitragliamento "Frecce" (CR.32), Aviazione Legionaria, La Salada (ZOa) (*).


II Brigada Hispana, 3-G-28, 4-G-28, 5-G-28, 6-G-28 (S.79), Valenzuela/Zaragoza (ZXa).


Grupos 1-G-22, 2-G-22 (Ju-52), Valenzuela/Zaragoza (ZXa).


Grupo 10-G-24 (Hs.123A-1), Tablada/Sevilla (ZZa).


Grupos 2-G-3, 3-G-3 (CR.32), Escatron (ZMa).


Other airfields:

Son Bonet (ZNa).


Republican side:


Polikarpov I-16 Mosca/Rata, Grupo 21:

1 Escuadrilla de Moscas, El Vendrell (AHa).

2 Escuadrilla de Moscas, Casinos (AJa).

3 Escuadrilla de Moscas, Camporrobles (*) (AKa).

4 Escuadrilla de Moscas, Valls (ALa).

5 Escuadrilla de Moscas, El Carmoli (ADa).

6 Escuadrilla de Moscas, Barracas (*) (AMa).

7 Escuadrilla de Moscas, Pachs del Penedes (ANa).


Polikarpov I-15 Chato, Grupo 26:

1 Escuadrilla de Chatos, Requena (APa).

2 Escuadrilla de Chatos, Saceruela (AQa).

3 Escuadrilla de Chatos, Alcublas (ARa).

4 Escuadrilla de Chatos, Balaguer (ASa).


Tupolev SB-2 Katiuska, Grupo 24 (*):

1 Escuadrilla, Camporrobles (AKa).

2 Escuadrilla, San Clemente (AGa).

3 Escuadrilla, Banyoles (ATa).

4 Escuadrilla, Lerida (AOa).


Escuadrilla de Caza Nocturna (I-15 and other types), 1 Escuadron, Grupo de Asalto 28 (Grumman G-23 Delfin), El Prat/Barcelona (AFa).


Grupo 30 (R-Z), Grupo 72 (R-5), 2 Escuadron (-), Grupo de Asalto 28 (Grumman G-23 Delfin), El Carmoli (ADa).


2 Escuadron (-), Grupo de Asalto 28 (Grumman G-23 Delfin), Pozoblanco (AEa).


Other airfields:

Alcala de Henares (ACa), Madrid/Barajas (AAa), Manises/Valencia (AUa), La Rabasa/Alicante (AVa), Liria (ALa).


(*) denotes only an informed guess about the unit/base.


Some links:






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