A total of 31 B-52 bombers were shot down during the Vietnam War.
During the Vietnam War, a notable number of B-52 bombers were shot down, causing significant losses for the United States Air Force. According to historical records, a total of 31 B-52 bombers were lost in combat during the conflict.
The B-52 Stratofortress, a long-range strategic bomber, played a crucial role in the air campaign against North Vietnam. These massive aircraft were utilized for their ability to carry large payloads and conduct strategic bombing missions. However, their size and slower speeds made them vulnerable to enemy fire.
One of the most notable incidents of B-52 losses occurred on December 18, 1972, during Operation Linebacker II, also known as the Christmas Bombings. In the span of eleven days, the U.S. launched an intensive aerial campaign, primarily utilizing B-52 bombers, to bombard North Vietnam. During this operation, eight B-52s were shot down by North Vietnamese surface-to-air missiles (SAMs).
To provide a more comprehensive understanding, here are some interesting facts regarding B-52 losses in Vietnam:
Losses by Year:
1965: 3 B-52 bombers shot down
- 1966: 3 B-52 bombers shot down
1972: 25 B-52 bombers shot down
Most Losses in a Single Day:
December 18, 1972: Eight B-52 bombers shot down during Operation Linebacker II.
A total of 33 B-52 crew members were killed during the Vietnam War. Some were captured, while others became prisoners of war.
Despite the losses suffered, the B-52’s role in the Vietnam War should not be understated. Its ability to carry out heavy bombing missions played a significant part in shaping the course of the conflict.
A powerful quote by General William W. Momyer, former commander of the Seventh Air Force, reflects the extraordinary role of B-52 bombers in Vietnam:
“The B-52 proved to be a most potent, flexible and versatile weapon… The airplane was almost always on the scene when called, flying combat missions throughout the length and breadth of South Vietnam and over Laos and Cambodia.”
Table: B-52 Losses in Vietnam War
|Year||Number of B-52s Shot Down|
Please note that this information provides a historical overview of B-52 losses in Vietnam and should be considered accurate within the context of the Vietnam War. However, in case of the need for precise and up-to-date data, it is always recommended to consult reliable sources and references specializing in the subject matter.
This video contains the answer to your query
The YouTube video titled “Operation Linebacker II – The B-52s go to Hanoi, 1972 – Animated” depicts the B-52 bombers flying over Hanoi as part of Operation Linebacker II in 1972. The operation aimed to destroy major target complexes in Hanoi and Haiphong but faced flaws and risks in its planning. The B-52s faced missile attacks, with some aircraft sustaining damage and casualties. The blame was put on bad tactics, leading to reductions in the number of raids. However, a massive attack was later ordered, resulting in the loss of only two B-52s. The success of the attack led to the North Vietnamese returning to peace negotiations, and eventually, the fall of South Vietnam in 1975.
I discovered more data
The devastating losses were not all one way. At the same time, the United States Air Force sustained losses that today would seem unfathomable. Fifteen B-52s – the pride of America’s fleet – were shot down, six in one day alone, and 33 airmen lost.
Surely you will be interested
|Airframe||United States of America|
|A-7 Corsair II||106|