The Bomber Mafia

The Bomber Mafia: A Dream, A Temptation and The Longest Night of the Second World War
by Malcom Gladwell begins just before WWII. Back then, the US Airforce was actually part of the Army…but the Army brass didn’t really know how to think about airplanes. Their ideas were still locked in the WWI model of dogfights: pilots trying to shoot down other pilots.

But in the mid-to-late 1930s, as the USA was observing Hitler’s move to power, there was a small band of pilots who were thinking very differently. What if airpower could change the course of how war was fought? What if we stopped thinking about leveling cities with bombs and instead trying to only bomb infrastructure, bridges, power stations, or the widget factory that made the propellers for planes or the tanks for the militaries?

This book is about a coalescing of a different strategy for the use of airpower by a small group of airmen in Alabama, along with the development of the Norden bombsight. Those two major components, along with a handful of other historic oddities and characters, helped (arguably) change the course of WWII. About 200 pages, soft cover, was $19, now as a remainder book, $10.95 plus $2.75 shipping and handling.