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Smart Bombs: The History and Future of Strategic Bombardment

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Smart Bombs: The History and Future of Strategic Bombardment


Introduction

Every kid loves to hear stories from their grandparents about something that they have experienced in their life. For me, some of the best stories came from my father about the air war that was waged over Europe during World War II. He often told me of a day that a formation of almost 1,000 bombers flew over his base:

"The drone of the planes could be heard for miles and made us on the ground feel as small as ants. There were over 1,000 of them overhead, in a perfect formation, each one with four engines roaring. They looked invincible to us on the ground; there were so many of them. After seeing the destruction that they brought upon the German cities and factories, I was thankful they were on our side."

Those "invincible" planes my father told me of were American B-17 Bombers. With a range of 1,850 miles, a maximum ceiling of 35,600 ft. and a bomb load of 8,000 pounds, the B-17 Flying Fortress was one of the most capable of the long range bombers of World War II. Though these statistics are imp...


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...w.fas.org/man/dod-101/sys/smart/gbu-10.htm>

Webmaster. "Guided Bomb Unit-28 (GBU-28) Bunker Buster." Military Analysis Network. 28 February. 1998. 19 March. 2004.

<http://www.fas.org/man/dod-101/sys/smart/gbu-28.htm>

Webmaster. "Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM)." May 13. 2003. 19 March. 2004.

? <http://www.fas.org/man/dod-101/sys/smart/jdam.htm>
WWII Statistics. 1999. <http://www.angelfire.com/ct/ww2europe/stats.html>
` "Zeppelin ZI." Spartacus School Net. <http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/FWWzeppelin.htm>

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