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V1 flying bomb over London, 1944

V1 flying bomb over London, 1944


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V1 flying bomb in flight, over a house in London, UK, in 1944 during the Second World War (1939-1945). The silhouette of the V1 is at upper right, with its glider shape clearly seen. These flying bombs, and the later V2 rockets, were developed and used by Nazi Germany to bomb the south-east of the UK in the later stages of the war. The V1 was powered by a pulse-jet engine that produced a very recognisable sound, leading to its nicknames of doodlebug or buzz bomb. The V1 was launched from a steam-powered catapult ramp and flew on a straight flight path until its fuel ran out. In many ways it can be considered the first effective cruise missile. The first V1 hit London on 13 June 1944. Around 2400 hit London in total over the next three months, killing over 6000 people. This photograph is from the archives of the New York Times.

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