As with Germany, area bombing
provided a way to avoid casualties in attritional fighting, and Japanese leaders imagined that American concern with casualties would permit them to force a compromise peace rather than surrender.
For instance, he shows that the Americans chose precision bombing over area bombing
because their military technology was better-suited for it than the area bombing
the British preferred, and he shows the impact on the campaign of a wide array of technological innovations on both sides, such as Oboe, which targeted bombings using radar signals, and Windows, which were scraps of metal released from planes by the Allies tojam enemy radio signals.
frightful damage wrought daily by the American Air Force on unfortified and undefended German towns"; "The Americans over fly German territory almost unrestricted and are destroying one town after another"; "The Americans carried out heavy area bombing
of (Berlin) causing fearful devastation.
With the war in Europe over, however, Winston Churchill began to feel embarrassed about his support of the campaign of indiscriminate area bombing
of German cities that had resulted in huge civilian casualties.
Before these challenges can be analyzed, however, it will be helpful to sketch a theoretical narrative of how the area bombing
of civilian populations evolved during World War II and became normalized, that is, accepted and approved within American political culture.
From the very beginning of the British area bombing
campaign - February 1942 - both the effectiveness and the morality of the bombing campaign have been controversial.
In doing so, Bloxham provides a thoughtful discussion on the principle of proportionality and airpower--that is, what is the balance between the hoped-for military advantage gained from area bombing
on the one hand and the resulting civilian deaths and destruction of property on the other?
She flatly condemns area bombing
as immoral, giving the reader no hint that some philosophers plausibly argue that area bombing
in World War II may have been morally justified (given the lack of alternatives, in an age before precision bombing was possible).
Besides, he would point out, area bombing
is really no different morally from a naval blockade, which by its very nature also affects the whole population; Britain's blockade of Germany in World War I killed an estimated 800,000 Germans, albeit in a slow manner, and nobody found fault with that.
Second, his "examination of the moral status of Allied area bombing
is not intended to impugn the courage and sacrifice of the men who flew RAF and USAAF bombing missions.
Accordingly, Atze's careful research on the public debates surrounding the Auschwitz trials of 1963-65 shows indisputably that the Allies' area bombing
strategy had not been massively forgotten (as Sebald would claim in his Zurich lectures) and that, in consequence, Sebald's thesis needs differentiated revision.
This meant adoption of what the British chose to call area bombing
and the Germans called terror bombing.
Once Allied forces had crossed the Rhine and were advancing into Germany, they were shocked by the scale of the devastation caused by our area bombing
British area bombing
in general was, by reason of its goal of breaking civilian morale, intentionally indiscriminate in its scope.
In his memoirs, published in 1947, he wrote: 'There is a widespread impression that I not only invented the policy of area bombing
but also insisted on carrying it out in the face of natural reluctance to kill women and children felt by everyone else.