How successful was the Allied bomber offensive of WW2?

With the US Army Air Forces attacking by day, and RAF Bomber Command at night, the combined Allied bomber offensive wrought a significant toll against the German war machine. But, 80 years after the first sorties by the US 8th Air Force, did the results meet the expectations of its advocates?

It was in the afternoon of 17 August 1942 that the first of a dozen Boeing B-17 Flying Fortresses, recently arrived in the UK, took off from Grafton Underwood to attack the railway yards at Sotteville-lès-Rouen. In one of the lead ships, the presence of Brig Gen Ira Eaker, soon to take overall command of the 8th Air Force, was testament to the significance of the event.

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