So were the fantastic kill claims by the likes of Hartman, Barkhorn, Rall and the other high scoring Experten of the luftwaffe, indeed genuine? At some time or other there have been serious challenges to these claims, some of them backed up by facts, some purely from jealousy or politics.
It works both ways, as claims by the top Soviet aces have been challenged in the west.
Allowing for the natural tendency to claim a victory in a confused combat, it is obvious many cases of discrepencies were of an accidental nature rather than a deliberate deception.
The Luftwaffe claim process was quite complex and hundreds if not thousands of claims were still awaiting recognition in Berlin at the end of the war. Of course the process was far speedier if there was a witness to a claim or wreckage recovered. Similarly the introduction of gun cameras from 1942 cleared many disputes and false/accidental claims.
Would have the top Allied pilots have equalled the experten of the Luftwaffe? Certainly if they had fought under the same conditions the top Allied pilots would have amassed incredible scores.