Scale of Air Attack - The bombing oi Germany this_ week
sets a new standard for the weight of our air-attack. Not only did Saturday night's raid on Hamburg and Sunday night's on Essen break all records by each discharging over 2,000 tons of bombs on its target, but the imme- diate follow-up at Hamburg by a heavy American day-raid, succeeded in turn by more R.A.F. raiding at night, including the deadly attack of Tuesday-Wednesday, must have greatly increased the effect of paralysing the efforts of firemen and salvage parties. We shall never know till we occupy Germany just how much damage our raids have done ; for while our photographs told the truth, it is always less than the truth, and what we have regularly found when we occupied enemy sites in Africa and Sicily justifies our assuming that the understatement is considerable. Such a phenomenon as the discharge of 2,3oo tons of explosives and incendiaries over a limited built-up arza within fifty minutes has no sort of parallel or precedent in history. The heaviest of the raids on London, terrible as they seemed to us at the time, were by comparison quite small affairs. It is impossible to estimate the reduction of German war- potential as anything less than enormous and after all it is on war-potential more than on anything else that Germany's fighting success has been ba3ed in both the two Great Wars. Meantime, thanks to the vast American production, the scale can still rise. It is over twice what it was a year ago ; a year hence, if the war still requires it, it will be twice as much again.