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Arthur 'Bomber' Harris
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Military Personnel
    (April 13, 1892-April 5, 1984)
    Born in Cheltenham, England, United Kingdom
    British Air Marshall
    Head of RAF Bomber Command (1942-46)
    He considered Americans arrogant.
    While serving in the Middle East between the World Wars, he dropped poison gas on rebelling Iraqis, commenting 'The only thing the Arab understands in the heavy hand.'
    Upon taking over, he insisted that Bomber Command would win the war single-handedly within two years.
    Instead, two years later German war production reached its highest peak.
    He continued to promote area bombing over precision targeting late in WWII, even though area bombing was less effective and produced more civilian casualties.
    During World War I, he shot down five enemy aircraft and survived a plane crash.
    He launched the area bombing campaign by announcing, 'The Nazis entered this war with the rather childish delusion that they were going to bomb everyone else and nobody was going to bomb them.... They sowed the wind and now they are going to reap the whirlwind.'
    He inspired great loyalty in the men who served with him.
    After WWII, he turned down a peerage to protest the government's refusal to establish a separate campaign medal for bomber crews similar to the one created for fighter pilots.
    Field Marshall Montgomery said, 'I don't think any single man did more in winning the war than he did. I doubt whether that is generally realized.'

Credit: C. Fishel


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