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By Phillip S. Meilinger

Ever because the US military got its first "aeroplane" in 1909, debates have raged over the software, effectiveness, potency, legality, or even the morality of airpower and strategic bombing. regrettably, a lot of this controversy has been coloured via accusations, misconceptions, inaccuracies, myths, and easy untruths. If airpower wishes criticizing --- and definitely there are occasions whilst feedback is acceptable --- it needs to be according to exact info. In Airpower: Myths and evidence, Col Phillip S. Meilinger, USAF, retired, increases issues and counterpoints that try and transparent away the various detritus that obscures the topic, hence permitting extra proficient debate at the actual matters pertaining to airpower and strategic bombing and giving our political and army leaders a greater foundation on which to shape judgements in destiny conflicts.

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Air University Press, 1997), passim. 11. : Adler & Adler, 1986), 128. S. : Rutgers University Press, 1981), 252–59; F. J. P. : C. C. , 1953), chap. 6; Herbert A. S. : Cornell University Press, 1991), 150. Perhaps one can appreciate the quality of this last assessment by noting that Rosen apparently thought Douhet’s first name was Emilio. 27 No one in the Air Corps hierarchy during the 1930s advocated such an air strategy. On the contrary, for various military, legal, and humanitarian reasons, the Air Corps expressly rejected this type of strategy, opting for a doctrine of highaltitude, daylight, precision, and formation bombing of industrial targets.

10. : Government Printing Office, 1939), 2; and Davis, 11. 11. DeWitt S. Copp, “Frank M. Andrews: Marshall’s Airman,” in Makers of the United States Air Force, ed. John L. : Office of Air Force History, 1987), 43–71. At the time of Pearl Harbor, the Air Corps still had fewer than 200 B-17s in the entire inventory. 15 THIS PAGE INTENTIONALLY LEFT BLANK Myth 2 Entering World War II, the Air Corps’s unbalanced doctrine and force structure leaned too heavily towards strategic bombing. * The Air Corps Tactical School (ACTS) is often depicted as a hotbed of radicalism, full of proselytizers for strategic airpower.

B. : Office of the Chief of Military History, 24 Department of the Army, 1964), 550. Henry L. ” Diary of Secretary of State Henry L. Stimson, 27 September 1940, Stimson Papers, Yale University Library. 7. “A”=attack; “B”=bomber; and “P”=pursuit, which later became “F”=fighter. 8. Ninth Air Force and Twelfth Air Force were considered “tactical” air forces in that they consisted largely of fighters and medium bombers. In contrast, Eighth Air Force and Fifteenth Air Force were composed primarily of heavy bombers and their fighter escorts; hence, they were considered “strategic” air forces.

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