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  • Rockets and Jets

    Through the fall of 1944, the Allies made slow but important gains against the enemy all along the Siegfried Line. Anything of possible value was attacked by the AAF and RAF to reduce German capability for defending its borders. At the same time, Germany's transportation system and industrial complex were attacked from England and Italy,
  • Rome Liberated

    During the first half of 1944 while the Allies had been preparing for the invasion of France, their forces in Italy had slowly driven the enemy northward. Rome was liberated on June 4, and by late September, the Allies had passed beyond Florence. In support of the land battle, Italian-based medium bombers and fighters continued pounding German
  • Roads, Rails and Bridges

    For the next two months, AAF heavy bombers from England and Italy struck repeatedly at strategic targets deep in enemy territory. In addition, Italian-based fighters and bombers attacked shipping, railroads and highways to paralyze the German transportation network, thereby easing the task of Allied ground troops slowly advancing northward to Rome.
  • Ryukyus

    The capture of Iwo Jima did not completely eliminate the need for a comprehensive air-sea rescue program along the B-29 route to Japan. Such a program had begun with the first B-29 training missions and continued throughout the rest of the war, an effort that paid dividends in lives saved and in improved morale, which meant greater combat
  • Runways By Hand: China's Support of the Air War

    During World War II, the United States and China forged a strong friendship based on mutual strategic interests and shared sacrifice in fighting and defeating Japan in the Pacific theatre. A key Chinese contribution involved the use of thousands of workers and hand-hewn stone rollers to construct airfields throughout China to support Allied
  • Raiders Flying Jackets

    On the far right is the A-2 flying jacket with the insignia of the 432nd Bomb Squadron worn by Capt. C. Ross Greening on the Tokyo Raid. He was later shot down and captured by the Germans in July 1943.To the left is an A-2 flying jacket with the insignia of the 34th Bomb Squadron worn by Lt. Thomas C. Griffin on the Tokyo Raid. He was later shot
  • Return to the Philippines

    As a prelude to the long-anticipated campaign to retake the Philippines, AAF air power carried out maximum-range air strikes against petroleum facilities in the Netherlands East Indies. The Allies invaded the Palau Islands and Morotai to gain airfield facilities, and targets in the Philippines were struck beginning in August 1944, seriously
  • Royce Special Mission to Mindanao

    The Royce special mission back to the Philippines consisted of 10 B-25s and three B-17s, which took off from Darwin, Australia, on April 11, 1942, for the 1,500 mile flight to Mindanao. After arriving at their forward airfields, the planes flew bombing missions against Japanese ships, airfields and harbor facilities in the Philippines. One B-17 was
  • Retreat in the Pacific

    Following the Pearl Harbor attack, the Japanese turned their attention to the Southwest Pacific. For the next five months they were to sweep the Allies before them with alarming ease.Their first objective was the Philippine Islands, which they attacked from the air on Dec. 8, 1941 (Philippines time) and invaded the following day. In the face of
  • Ruhrstahl X-4 Air-to-Air Missile

    Allied bombing success in Germany during World War II led the Germans to develop air-to-air missiles. The X-4 was to be launched from fighter planes against B-17 bombers. This missile, like the V-weapons, is an example of advanced technology that failed to prevent German defeat, but previewed future arms development. The missile's warhead was
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