cover image of Japan 1944–45

Japan 1944–45

LeMay's B-29 strategic bombing campaign · Air Campaign

by Mark Lardas Author · Adam Tooby Artist


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The air campaign that incinerated Japan's cities was the first and only time that independent air power has won a war.

As the United States pushed Imperial Japan back towards Tokyo Bay, the US Army Air Force deployed the first of a new bomber to the theater. The B-29 Superfortress was complex, troubled, and hugely advanced. It was the most expensive weapons system of the war, and formidably capable. But at the time, no strategic bombing campaign had ever brought about a nation's surrender. Not only that, but Japan was half a world away, and the US had no airfields even within the extraordinary range of the B-29.

This analysis explains why the B-29s struggled at first, and how General LeMay devised radical and devastating tactics that began to systematically incinerate Japanese cities and industries and eliminate its maritime trade with aerial mining. It explains how and why this campaign was so uniquely successful, and how gaps in Japan's defences contributed to the B-29s' success.

Publication Details

Bloomsbury Publishing
Osprey Publishing
Publication Date:
Air Campaign


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Mark Lardas (Author)

Mark Lardas holds a degree in Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering, but spent his early career at the Johnson Space Center doing Space Shuttle structural analysis, and space navigation. An amateur historian and a long-time ship modeler, Mark ...

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Adam Tooby (Artist)

Adam Tooby is an internationally renowneddigital aviation artist and illustrator. His work can be found in publicationsworldwide and as box art for model aircraft kits. He also runs a successfulillustration studio and aviation prints business. He ...

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Paul Kime (Artist)

Paul Wright has painted ships of all kinds for most of his career, specializing in steel and steam warships from the late 19th century to the present day. Paul's art has illustrated the works of Patrick O'Brian, Dudley Pope and C.S. Forester among...

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Illustrator :
Paul Wright
Author :
Mark Lardas
Artist :
Adam Tooby
Artist :
Paul Kime
Artist :
Japan 1944–45
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