Ilyushin Il-2 Stumovik
Ilyushin Il-2 Sturmovik
2x20mm or 37mm; 1x12.7mm
Ilyushin Il-2 â€œSturmovikâ€ Tactical Bomber
ID: Plastic â€œtactical bomberâ€ gaming piece: Ilyushin Il-2 â€œSturmovikâ€ tactical bomber from the game Axis & Allies Europe 40-2nd Ed.
The Story of the Il-2 â€œSturmovik:â€ The Il-2 â€œSturmovikâ€ attack plane was nothing short of a legend in Soviet service! Designed for accurate dive bombing and for strafing runs, it was eventually fitted with a powerful 37mm cannon. It became known as the most deadly anti-tank aircraft in the Soviet arsenal. Whatâ€™s more, carefully placed armor plates were incorporated right into the planeâ€™s load-bearing frame made the plane much more resistent to fire from both interceptors and ground anti-aircraft guns... and of course made the plane much more surviveable for its pilots. Like all attack planes, it was still vulnerable to faster and more maneuverable dedicated fighters, causing the crews to retro-fit a rear-gunner to existing models and its designers to incorporate a buit-in rear gun station into their later models. At first, the rear gunnerâ€™s position was not as well armored, leading to high losses of rear gunners until the armored box was extended rear-ward to give them more protection. Production delays in two factories even caused Stalin himself to write the managers an angry (even threatening) letter, in which he famously proclaimed that the Sturmoviks were as vital to the Red army as â€œthe air it breathesâ€ and â€œlike the bread it eats!â€ Needless to say, the threats motivated the managers, but the emotional endorsement of the plane also motivated the production workers, whose efforts soon brought the plane into the field in unprecedented numbers. By the end of the war, it would become the most-produced military aircraft of all time!
Usage Notes: Use this piece for â€œGlobal 1939â€ and â€œInvasion of Italyâ€ Variants as a tactical bomber unit. Other Soviet aircraft of interest may be: Pe-8 Strategic Bomber & Yakovlev â€œYakâ€ Fighter. Rival ground attack planes of interest are: the German Ju-87 â€œStukaâ€ dive bomber, Japanese Aichi â€œValâ€ dive bomber, US Douglass SBD â€œDauntlessâ€ dive bomber, and the British De Havilland Mosquito light bomber.
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