Bombs, Cities, and Civilians: American Airpower Strategy in World War II
As the might and capabilities of American airpower have grown during the last 60 years, so has the controversy about its use in the intentional and indiscriminate wartime bombardment of civilians. In Bombs, Cities and Civilians, Conrad Crane maintains that, for the most part, American airmen in World War II remained committed to precision bombing doctrine. Instead of attacking densely populated urban areas simply to erode civilian morale, Army Air Forces adhered to a policy that emphasised targeting key industrial and military sites. He demonstates that while the British, Germans and Japanese routinely conducted indiscriminate aerial bombardment of enemy cities, American airmen consistently stayed with daylight raids against carefully selected targets, especially in Europe. Daytime precision missions were usually far more dangerous than night area attacks, but such Army Air Forces tactics increased bombing efficiency and also reduced the risk of civilian casualties.
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aerial AFHRA air attacks air campaign Air Corps Air Power air staff aircraft airpower Allied American air Anderson Papers April Army Air Forces Arnold Papers atomic bomb August bombardment Bomber Command Brig British Carl Spaatz Chiefs of Staff cities combat Craven and Cate crews Curtis LeMay destroy destruction developed diary Doolittle Douhet Dresden Eaker effect Eighth Air Force Eisenhower enemy Europe February Fifteenth Air Force File fire raids flak George German Giles H. H. Arnold Hansell Haywood Hansell incendiary industrial Ira Eaker January Japan Japanese Kuter leaders March memo missions Ninth Air Force nonvisual operations Pacific precision bombing precision-bombing radar bombing Ronald Schaffer Spaatz Papers Spaatz to Arnold Stimson Strategic Air Forces strategic bombing tactics targets terror bombing theater tions Tokyo U.S. Army U.S. Military Academy U.S. Strategic USAF USSTAF warfare Washington weapons World XXI Bomber Command York