Selling Schweinfurt: Targeting, Assessment, and Marketing in the Air Campaign against Germany
Air University Maxwell AFB United States
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Limitations of Americas military-industrial complex during World War II necessarily constrained President Franklin D. Roosevelts strategic and military options. Airpower proponents boasted of a quick-victory option, but they lacked an apparatus with the industrial information and analytical power for selecting targets and assessing results, so they conjured a hurried air-intelligence enterprise, which leaned upon the British, to accompany their untested strategic-bombing doctrine. Right or wrong, the underlying subtext governing American military decision-making and bureaucratic rivalry was resource efficiency. Under the backdrop of the Combined Bomber Offensive, several bureaucratic battles ensued The Army Air Forces leveraged the air campaign against Germany as a platform to fight for its own independence. A second fight involved an emerging national intelligence community as it struggled for influence both through and in lieu of the War Department though its committees of analysts, economists, lawyers, mathematicians, engineers, and industrialists. A third fight enveloped the AAFs internal Air-Intelligence enterprise A-2 and the War Departments Military Intelligence Division G-2. The A-2s burgeoning community of air-intelligence experts, led initially by pilots in temporary assignments, sought to prove that air intelligence demanded unique specialization and information requirements. The A-2 fought not only for independent responsibilities from the G-2, but also for recognition as a worthy and separate enterprise from the pilot corps within the AAF. This study seeks to determine whether an air campaign is an organizational or technology-driven phenomenon.
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics
- Military Forces and Organizations