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By Matthew K. Rodman

This paintings makes an attempt to give a correct account of the character of the air struggle within the Southwest Pacific in the course of global battle II, focusing regularly upon the 5th Air strength. The research doesn't presume to be an all-encompassing operational precis; as a substitute, it goals to supply a consultant photo of yank bombardment in that zone. This was once a second in historical past while wrestle air energy performed a key function in attaining victory. the writer recounts how the 5th Air strength quick constructed new strategies and approaches that "saved the day." The perfection of low-altitude bombing, strafing, and pass bombing made modifications that during hindsight are effortless to acknowledge and quantify. with no them the 5th may have came across itself in an extended, dearer struggle with an doubtful end result. even though, those new strategies harm the enemy to the level that the Allies ultimately prevailed. the genuine price of this examine lies now not loads in its retelling of vital advancements in air strength as in its pushing the necessity for the army to be versatile, adaptive, opportunistic, and entrepreneurial whereas safeguarding center values and capitalizing on center expertise. Many elements ascertain luck -- guidance, assets, wisdom, and backbone to call a couple of. yet none of those have approximately the significance of the artistic skill to evolve successfully to confront the danger and convey victory.

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Extra info for A War of Their Own: Bombers Over the Southwest Pacific

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The Air War Plans Division’s tasking to provide a realistic assessment of what it would take to achieve victory in a future war with the Axis powers presented a golden chance to turn theory into reality: “In FDR’s request [lay the] opportunity to sneak ACTS doctrine into a major War Department planning document via the back door. . ”40 But what took only a matter of weeks—writing strategic doctrine firmly into America’s war plans—could 16 PREWAR DOCTRINE AND TACTICS not totally undo years of interservice battles over equipment and tactics.

The primary target was Rabaul Harbor, where a few months earlier the Japanese had felt so secure that they disregarded the bomber threat and indiscriminately packed the harbor full of warships and supply ships. On 15 November 1942, the 43d BG again launched on Rabaul at night: McCullar bombed from 1,200 feet and hit the one destroyer he was after. Lieutenant Anderson made one run at 7,000 feet with no hits. On his second run, at 1,200 feet, he had a direct hit on a light cruiser with one bomb. The cruiser began to burn and exploded.

Meilinger, USAF, retired, Airpower: Myths and Facts (Maxwell AFB, AL: Air University Press, 2003), 18. 11. Cox, Beyond the Battle Line, v. 12. 222-52. 13. Air Corps Tactical School, Attack Aviation (Langley Field, VA: ACTS, 1930), 37. 14. Thomas H. Greer, The Development of Air Doctrine in the Army Air Arm, 1917–1941 (Washington, DC: Office of Air Force History, 1985), 67. 15. , 55. 16. 24 B63. 17. , 81. 18. Ibid. 19. , 58–59. 20. , 11–12. 21. , 5. 22. , 6. 23. Finney, History of the Air Corps Tactical School, 63.

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