Название: Decisive Force: Strategic Bombing in the Gulf War
Автор: Davis, Richard G.
Издательство: Air Force History and Museum Program
Размер: 17 Мб
In the Persian Gulf War, the U.S. Air Force (USAF) demonstrated that a new era in strategic bombing had begun. Air power could now destroy key portions of a country's military and economic infrastructure without resort to nuclear weapons and heavy bombers and with low losses to both the attacker and enemy civilians. This achievement rested on technology that both increased bombing accuracy and decreased the effectiveness of enemy defenses, and the reexamination and reapplication of traditional strategic bombing theory by USAF planning officers. Alone of the world's air forces the USAF possessed a 2,000-pound bomb designed to penetrate many feet of hardened concrete and steel. Its use destroyed the most heavily protected and important Iraqi targets. American anti-radar missiles intimidated Iraqi radar operators, leaving middle and upper altitudes free for Coalition air operations. American stealth technology, in the form of the F-117A fighter, gave the attacker virtual invulnerability while leaving the enemy defenseless. Behind this new technology lay the USAF planning officers, who laid out their offensive in a logical manner designed to minimize both friendly and enemy casualties while excising Iraq's military potential. The offensive, of course, did not achieve one hundred percent perfection, but it carried out its goals in a manner sure to make any future aggressor state hesitate to call such destruction down upon itself.