Pilot Accidentally Lands in Enemy Airfield and Other Historic Mistakes

An Fw 190 dogfighting a Spitfire over the English Channel. Pintrest

35. Armin Faber’s Colossal Oops

The odds of an enemy gifting you with one of his most advanced weapons are pretty slim. Yet that is precisely what Oberleutnant Armin Faber did in the summer of 1942, when he landed his Fw 190A-3 at an RAF airfield in Britain, mistaking it for a German airfield in France. Adding to his embarrassment, Faber had only recently delivered written orders from Luftwaffe chief Herman Goering, prohibiting Fw 190 pilots from crossing the English Channel.

Faber’s oops moment began on June 23rd, 1942. Assigned mainly to administrative paperwork duties, he asked for and got special permission to fly a combat mission with an Fw 190 squadron. The squadron was scrambled to intercept British bombers sent to attack Faber’s home base, Morlaix Aerodrome in Brittany. Escorting Spitfires got into a dogfight with the Fw 190s over the English Channel, and during that aerial melee, Faber got disoriented.