Galland was one of the Luftwaffe’s most successful fighter aces. He held a staff post in Poland in 1939 but was then transferred to an active command in France. During the Battle of Britain he led III Gruppe of Jagdgeschwader 26 and took part in many fights over the Channel. In November 1941 he became MOLDERS’ successor as Commander of the Fighter Arm. His task was to organize the defense of Europe and to this purpose he wanted Messerschmitt to build the new 262 fighter which would be a match for the P-51 Mustangs. Galland took the side of the pilots in demanding better equipment and this frequently led him into arguments with HITLER. Hitler advocated building the new Me-210 fighter which could easily be converted for bomber use. Galland was eventually dismissed in January 1945 and was given command of an elite jet fighter squadron. He was shot down on 26 April 1945, captured and taken to England for debriefing.