For instance, an air raid beyond bomber's range where after completing the mission the pilots should land or eject at the enemy land and surrender.

  • 8
    There were several examples where the missions were intended to end in neutral territory, with the crews involved surrendering to the neutral authorities, would those count?
    – Steve Bird
    Nov 9, 2016 at 15:25
  • 2
    @SJuan76 I mean motivating the personnel to die may be more difficult (depending on culture) than surrender.
    – Anixx
    Nov 9, 2016 at 15:30
  • 4
    It seems to be more usual to have a planned way out, as a hope, even if the personel are aware that it may well not work. The St Nazaire Raid is an example: only 228 of 611 attackers escaped, with 215 being made prisoner, and 169 dying. It was nonetheless considered a success. Nov 9, 2016 at 15:42
  • 5
    @JohnDallman My first thought was St Nazaire too ... but you're right, it would be unusual to have absolutely no plan to attempt to escape. I also thought about the Dolittle raids, where the "escape plan" involved landing in occupied China, and hoping friendly forces would be the first to find them. I don't think that counts either, as they certainly wouldn't want to be captured by the Japanese.
    – Cooper
    Nov 9, 2016 at 16:20
  • 7
    During Prague offensive Nazi army received an order to fight against the Soviet army and to retreat until they are able to surrender to "the allies". Is it OK?
    – Matt
    Nov 9, 2016 at 17:25

1 Answer 1


During B-29 raids on Japan in 1944, in July and November, three B-29 bombers were forced to land in the Soviet Union either because of battle damage or fuel exhaustion after raids on Japanese positions in Manchuria. Because the Soviets were still not formally at war with Japan at this point, they interned the bombers' crews and happily accepted the windfall of the B-29s, a bomber they had unsuccessfully tried to get from the US.

Although these B-29 crews were not technically prisoners of an enemy, they were effectively out of the war. At this point in the Pacific Theater, becoming a prisoner of the Japanese was more than likely a death sentence, so internment in the Soviet Union was the only viable option to crews whose bombers could not return to their island bases.

  • 4
    But were they instructed to surrender?
    – MCW
    Nov 27, 2016 at 15:25
  • The Sovjets weren't considered enemies at the time. Nov 27, 2016 at 20:34
  • 1
    In this case, I would say, "turn themselves in," rather than "surrender."
    – Tom Au
    Nov 28, 2016 at 12:27
  • Because the Soviet Union was not
    – Docholl1
    Nov 29, 2016 at 13:36
  • 2
    An even more older equivalent example would be the Doolittle raid in 1942
    – d.k
    Aug 15, 2017 at 18:29

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.