RAF Bomber Command: ‘Strike Hard, Strike Sure’ 1936-1945

Author(s): Ron Mackay 

ISBN: 9781781558362
Copies: 400
£31.50 £45.00
The painfully protracted but ultimately successful raising of a mighty aerial strike force that crippled the Third Reich’s industrial capacity.
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  • Historically rich in detail with previously unpublished photographs from private archives

  • Researched and written by an aviation and military historian renowned author

  • Essential for military/historians, modellers, flight-sim enthusiasts (War Thunder, IL-2 Sturmovik: Great Battles and DCS) and those interested in the complexities of aircraft design and production during the Second World War

They sowed the wind and now they are going to reap the whirlwind.’
Arthur ‘Bomber’ Harris

The concept of an aerial campaign on a nation’s industrial and military might was advocated by Britain before the start of the First World War; however, a stringent post-war economy ensured that the creation of Bomber Command in 1936 witnessed a daunting disparity between the aim of striking at an adversary’s ability to sustain itself and the means to do so.

From 1939 to 1942, Bomber Command was very weak in terms of human and material losses. The navigational means with which to accurately guide bombers to targets was almost completely lacking while the enemy defensive network inflicted serious casualties.

Consequently, the punishment handed out was minimal. The resurgence of Bomber Command’s fortunes coincided with the appointment of Sir Arthur Harris.

The advent of four-engine designs such as the Avro Lancaster and Handley Page Halifax ensured that a greatly increased bomb tonnage could be delivered. Also, electronic aids such as Gee, Oboe and H2S simplified the task in finding targets. Therefore, by 1944-1945, the RAF’s bombers pulverised Hitler’s Third Reich.

Although flak and night-fighters took a heavy toll on the bombers, the RAF’s nocturnal offensive in conjunction with the USAAF’s daylight assaults crippled Germany’s ability to fight back.

BOOK ISBN 9781781558362
FORMAT 248 x 172 mm
BINDING hardback
PAGES 556 pages
PUBLICATION DATE 2 December 2021
ILLUSTRATIONS 394 black-and-white and 32 colour photographs


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Ron Mackay’s involvement with military aviation began during the Second World War. The local Coastal Command airfield at his birthplace of Wick, Scotland, provided a wealth of RAF and USAAF designs with which to stimulate his interest, which was subsequently sustained by National Service in the RAF. A working knowledge of German has expanded his field of study into the Luftwaffe. To date, he has published twenty-seven books covering the aforementioned Allied and Axis Air Forces, which include several co-authored examples.