Seventy-three years ago this week, American and British bomber crews and their support personnel endeavored to deliver massive thousand plane raids around the clock against targets in Nazi Germany. Major Sutterfield’s article captures the incredible and time consuming logistical effort to make “Big Week” a reality—from industrial mobilization planning, factories delivering aircraft, spares, equipment, trained personnel, facilities, proper organizational arrangements, and attuned leadership.
“Armies do not go out and have a fight and one guy wins and the other loses and the winner takes all. Throughout history victorious commanders have been those that knew logistics when they saw it. Before any plans can be made to provide an army, logistics must be provided first. History has changed a lot, but logistics has been the crux of every one of these changes, the nail that was missing, which lead to the loss of a country lead to a lot of those decisions”
Major General Hugh J. Knerr, USAAF
“If any indisputable logistic lesson can be drawn from World War II, it is that in any major war involving industrial powers, no nation can hereafter emerge victorious without substantial and sustained superiority over its enemy in the quality and the quantity of its weapons and supporting equipment.”
Major General O.R. Cook, USA