USAAF Tactical Ground Attack in Western Europe The 9th Air Force was the tactical arm of the USAAF in western Europe from 1943 to the end of the war in 1945. The aircrews of the 9th Air Force "softened" the enemy before the invasion of Normandy, supported ground forces on D-Day and made possible their rapid advance through France to the Nazi heartland. Click on the following links to learn more about tactical ground attack in western Europe during World War II. Softening Up for the Normandy Invasion Operation OVERLORD: The D-Day Invasion Breakout and the Race Across France Battle of the Bulge Into Germany P-47 Armor Plate Maj. Gen. Elwood "Pete" Quesada Maj. Gen. Otto Weyland 9th Air Force Field Jacket A-26 Invader Turret Gunsight Click here to return to the Tactical Strike Overview. Find Out More Related Fact Sheets USAF Historical Study No. 30: 9th AF in the Western Desert Campaign (Provided by AFHRA) USAF Historical Study No. 32: 9th AF in the European Theater of Operations (Provided by AFHRA) USAF Historical Study No. 36: 9th AF, April-November 1944 (Provided by AFHRA) USAF Historical Study No. 37: 9th and 12th AF in the Sicilian Campaign (Provided by AFHRA) Note: The appearance of hyperlinks does not constitute endorsement by the National Museum of the USAF, the U.S. Air Force, or the Department of Defense, of the external website, or the information, products or services contained therein.