By D. Mortensen

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In addition , the Air Corps procured a number of light aircraft, basically modified from commercial sports planes, to give the ground forces close air support service once air superiority had been gained. Some of the models were highly maneuverable and performed well at slow speeds. The Stinson 0-49 (top) was a successful model used throughout the war. The Ryan 0-5 t (bottom) had high-lift wings that permitted operations in and out of small fields . 425418 To complement the light observation aircraft, airmen turned to modified fighters for the needed observation over enemy lines.

Organization of Ground Troops, p. 112. ltl. , Organization of Ground Troops, pp. 110-1lt. lt2. Quoted words from War Department Field Service Regulation, FM 100-15, Larger Units, 29 Jun lt2. See also Futrell, Ideas, p. 66. lt3. Memo, Arnold to CofS, WD, 20 Jul lt2, sub: Ground-Air Support of Armored Forces; Memo, Arnold to SecWar, 23 Oct lt2, sub: Aviation in Support of the Army Ground Forces. Both in H. H. Arnold Manuscript Collection, box lt2, LOC. ltlt. Futrell, Ideas, pp. S. Army, 1960), pp 16-19; Final Re ort of the Air Cor s Board on Revision to the 5- ear Ex erimentai Program, 23 Jun 39, in Lyons Records large indexed microfilm collection, Historians Office, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base (WPAFB); Ltr, Adjutant General, WD, to Chief, Air Corps, 30 Oct 39, sub: Airplane Replacement and Research and Development Programs, Lyons Records, WPAFB.

Gen. Thomas T. Handy, the assistant chief of staff for operations. Arnold argued that the air commander was the specialist and that he should have control over his particular operations. He cited Maj. Gen. M. F. " It is not clear how much of Arnold's concept meshed with the idea of a task force concept of Eisenhower, but Eisenhower came to accept great independence among his commanders. He saw his air, ground, and naval chiefs having a dual role. l° As the vagaries of war would have it, the Combined Chiefs of Staff did not establish a clear directive for Eisenhower until the last few weeks before the invasion was to take place.

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