B-24 Liberator Units Of The CBI
This 96-page book---#87 in the Osprey Combat Aircraft Series---follows Osprey’s usual 7-¼” x 9-¾” format, and is comprised of six chapters:
- Chapter 1, China Burma India, tells how the 7th BG and its 3 squadrons were formed, and the difficulty they had doing so, since President Roosevelt had a Germany-first plan of action.
- Chapter 2, Operation During 1943, points out the priority of targets, the first being merchant shipping and docks, and added in late 1943, rail centers and bridges as well.
- Chapter 3, Strategic Air Force, talks about how Roosevelt and Churchill decided on a more offensive strategy for Burma, and went to a unified command center.
- Chapter 4, Fourteenth Air Force, describes the formation of the 308th BG, which was made specifically to support China, and consisted of 4 squadrons.
- Chapter 5, Sea Searches and Ichi-Go, explains that once the B-24s started hurting shipping, the Japanese decided to mount a land attack against the 14th Air Force.
The last installment, Chapter 6, End Game in China, explains that by that time in the war, ocean-surface shipping was too dangerous for the Japanese, so they began shipping more and more by rail, and thus the 14th’s tactics changed to go after railroads and bridges.
The book is full of narratives and feats of individual B-24 crews’ stories. There are many period photos of Liberator nose art, crews, and strike photos, to give the reader a flavor of what it was like. The book also contains an index, and---best of all---the 11 pages of color plates and nose art. It will make you want to build some B-24 kits for sure.
Overall, a good book on one of America’s lesser-known combat theaters.
Thanks to Osprey Publishing and to IPMS/USA for the opportunity to review this work.