It is a strange construction, and would be better rephrased. At the very least, I would change it to: Nor is judgement passed on the enemy; the closest we get to the enemy is seeing them as they streak overhead in their bombers.Originally Posted by Taka
"The closest" is difficult to classify. It is, of its nature, adjectival or adverbial, but it is preceded by a definite article, which is reserved for substantives. Therefore, I would say that "closest" is being used as a noun or there is an implied noun, such as "point" that is an ellipsis after "closest". Then "the closest (point)" becomes the subject of the clause: The closest is seeing them...bombers. In that clause, "seeing" introduces a gerund phrase, acting as a predicate nominative after the linking verb "is" (which is necessary, by the way). The remainder "whom we get to" is a relative clause, (that) we get to whom. This modifies "closest" and "whom" refers back to "enemy".
A bit complex. Does it answer your question? :wink: