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November 15, 2020 at 5:18 am #10457James HunterGuest
The Fall of Fortresses
by Elmer Bendiner
- Format: hardcover, 258 pages
- Release date: May 12, 1980
- Language: english
- Author: Elmer Bendiner
- Publisher: G. P. Putnam’s Sons
- Genres: history, aviation
- ISBN: 9780399123726 (0399123725)
About The Book
A vivid, poignant recreation of the European air war, as seen by one who ﬂew in it and felt its terrifying seductive power, The Fall of Fortresses is a major new contribution to the literature of the World War II experience.
On an August morning in 1943, a group of American airmen were told that before the day was out they would deliver the blow that would win the war. They, and the B-17 Flying Fortresses they ﬂew, were ordered to obliterate the installations on which all of German industry depended. The survivors would see the vindication of the prophets of air power. — The target: the ball-bearing factories at Schweinfurt.
So began the first of two amazing missions. Drawing on his experiences, author navigator Elmer Bendiner describes the hell of the bombing runs and the terrible trail of Flying Fortresses burning across the face of Europe.
Who really won? Who lost? For answers to these questions, the author has turned to German as well as U.S. Air Force archives and to interviews with surviving strategists. He traces the deliberations concerning Schweinfurt from its first casual mention at a Washington cocktail party to the bombings themselves. And he uncovers the bitter interservice rivalries and the motives that climaxed in the bloody German skies.
Were it nothing but a personal account of what the war was like, The Fall of Fortresses would be well worth reading. But it is more: a highly original and deeply felt meditation on men at war and /the myths and realities of air power, as relevant to readers in 1980 as it was to those who met the dawn skies of Europe over thirty years ago.
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