Bombing Germany: The Final Phase

Bombing Germany: The Final Phase

The Destruction of Pforzhelm and the Closing Months of Bomber Command's War

A C Redding

Publication date:
February 2015
Publisher :
Pen and Sword
No associated books available.


During 1942 and 1943 the striking power of RAF Bomber Command was transformed by the arrival of heavy bombers, advanced navigation and blind bombing systems, and new tactics to concentrate the bombers over the target and swamp the German defences. By October 1944 most of Germany's cities were in ruins, yet the bombing continued to intensify, reaching unprecedented levels in the final seven months of the air campaign. The value of further area raids was questioned during the opening months of 1945, yet the Allies destroyed the remaining cities in a bid to hasten the end of the war. The handful of German cities still largely unscathed in early February 1945 included Dresden, which was obliterated on 13 February. Ten days later, the South German city of Pforzheim was destined to suffer the same fate.

This book commemorates the efforts of the aircrew members who risked their lives, consolidating a host of intriguing first-hand accounts. It also considers Pforzheim as a representative community under National Socialist rule. The city's survivors remember the horror of the raid and its aftermath, including eventual occupation by French Colonial troops and, subsequently, American forces. Tony does an admirable job of presenting historical context when considering actions in times of extreme trauma and his narrative offers an intriguing, engaging and poignant evocation of the closing months of Bomber Command's war.