History 05/01/20 “Wasserfall”: how anti-aircraft missile, Hitler might have changed the outcome of the war

Shortly before his death albert Speer, the former in the autumn of 1943, the armaments Minister of the Third Reich, admitted that in 1944 he made a fatal mistake that destroyed Hitler and the entire Empire. In his opinion, expressed in the book “Third Reich from the inside. Memories of Reich war industry” that their führer opting ballistic missiles “V-2” instead of anti-aircraft “Wasserfall” put an end to the hopes of German major turning point in the war.

the Father of rocket German industry

So can be safely called Walter Dornberger, under whose leadership on the ground in Penemunde conducted promising (in the opinion of contemporaries, but not Hitler’s) missile development under the code designations A-3, A-4 and A-5. The beginning of the war the draft for number 4 is already a prototype of the rocket “V-2”, but work on it was frozen. The Fuhrer believed that the war would be quick, but because of the rocket development to win he will not manage to need all the forces that military experts and industry were thrown on other, more pressing, according to Hitler, tasks.

the Offensive, instead of defensive

to start the frozen project was only in the summer of 1943 when the situation on the fronts for Germany was far not the brilliant. But Hitler was not anti-aircraft rocket “Wasserfall” for air defense, and ballistic “V-2”, which were clearly offensive in nature. With its help, the führer wanted to get the same Britain, which could not make a badly battered German air force. Prospects for defensive anti-aircraft missiles, which in 1943 existed in the form of drawings and some experience at the stands of nodes Hitler was not seen. And absolutely nothing.


Vyacheslav and Mikhail Kozyrev in the book “Unusual weapons of the Third Reich” are of the opinion that among the many military developments already doomed the Third Reich it is the “Wasserfall” more than the other claimed the title of miracle weapon. With the mass slightly less than 4 tons it could hit targets at altitudes up to 20 kilometers and to destroy the not even single machines and entire squadrons of aircraft. Missile control was carried out by the operator, which receive signals from two radar stations: one followed the target, the second missile. The task of the operator was to combine the two marks using a special device that resembles a joystick, after which the target would be affected.

Fate and prospects of the project

unfortunately, today, to judge the effectiveness of the project difficult due to the lack of sufficient analytical data for tests. According to preliminary estimates made by military historian Sergei Sysoyev, the German industry could well be a year to produce and put into service up to 7000 controlled anti-aircraft missiles, which, however, in 1945 no longer allowed to close the whole sky Germany and even to protect strategically important industrial facilities. But if development began before the missile was ready by 1942? It is possible that the massive bombing of the country in 1944 could have been avoided. So the Reich would not have experienced a deficit in the necessary tanks, planes, hand weapons and ammunition.

Yaroslav Gorbunov

© Russian Seven

see also: editor’s choice, “Russian Seven”what the KGB agreed with the thieves before the Olympics in Mosquito was the biggest surprise of the Germans in the USSR after the beginning waynice not relatives of the deceased on pohorence actually hurt Greta Thunberg suggested articles to Share: Comments Comments to the article “the”Wasserfall”: how anti-aircraft missile, Hitler might have changed the outcome of the war” Please log in to leave a comment! br>
Share on Tumblr