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More and more as the war wears on the allied aeroplanes are establishing a precious persona] ascendancy over those of the i enemy. Not only are the pilots more skii- ! ful and more daring, their machines ! swifter and more powerful, but the bombs which French and English drop are. it, appears, infinitely more destructive in their effects than those which the Taubca have Known over undefended cities. Orgaoiised into squadron.; of half a dozen, the French aeroplanes reconnoitre, within a radius of a. hundred miles, return to a given rendezvous. and there pool the information they have gathered. One such rendezvous is described in the Paris ‘Matin.’ "One by one," says the writer. " from the four points of the compass, the aeroplanes return like homing pigeons. Soon the whole squadron is there, and while pilots and observers go to headquarters to make their reports, the mechanicians .see to the machines. Suddenly* just when we are thinking that, the day’s work is done, wo hear the droning of a motor. All eyes are fixed on the heavy clouds on the horizon. A black spot shows against their grey, grows, and take? shape. No. it is not a Prussian, hut a. French aeroplane—that, of the pilot X. He lias some news for us—very important news. A German convoy is advancing along a little branch line some 30 miles away. Immediately the air camp is full of bustle. In less than a. quarter of an hour the whole squadron is tip and off, X.’s little aeroplane leading the way. On \vp speed in single file, our eyes fixed on our leader. Then suddenly, before- wo have been able to make out very precisely what i? beneath ns. a flame rises from the ground, and a. great wave of air rocks our machine. X. must- have hit, something. We cut off tlie motor and descend. The aeroplane in front of us has. just made the same maiKcuvre, and has dropped its bombs, to judge bv the column? of thick smoke that arise here and there. -It Will be- Our Turn Hoon.— Still we descend. And now we can distinguish what in going on beneath. An engine is lying on its side, a great hole torn in us flank, and behind it is Ibe black, confused mass of a convoy, from, winch flames anti smoke are pouring. X.'s aim ban been true. But a little further on. when the smoke of the burning blows momentarily aside, we nee another convoy in flight. We switch on our motor, overtake it. aim, and drop our bomb.?. No nine to watch their effect. If wc have nii.-wd wc jiiuh leave it to these who iMIcw to cb> baiter. We have still work tc

no. In front of us lies a village, from whose house? issue htlc dark specks in hundreds, a? from a- disturbed a-nt-hill. We drop more bombs, and tins time wc aie sure, we have not, missed, (columns of smoko rise up. the movement among the dark specks become? more marked, and

groat billow? of air cause our machine to roll like a- boat- in a. Jngn sea. Non’ the chief of the squadron signals to us to return. Regretfully, and dropping or.r kw-t project lies, we. sweep round and make tor

home, amid a had of ineffective bullet,?.

! Below us the convoy? are burning stilt. ; throwing out yellow tongues of flame into j the gathering darkness. Far away in the ! horizon wo , an see the friendly flicker <>f ; the lights that denote our landing place. I 1 lie day's work is over, a good day s work. ' and c typical. There, will he many a. (Jei - I man battery to-night that- will wait in vain I ,or ‘he promised and sorely-ncedcd mini!- ! t ions,'

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Bibliographic details

SKILFUL WORK BY ALLIED AVIATORS, Issue 15699, 13 January 1915

Word Count

SKILFUL WORK BY ALLIED AVIATORS Issue 15699, 13 January 1915

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