Why The US Used Bombers As “Bait” & How Successful It Is In Masters Of The Air
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Why The US Used Bombers As “Bait” & How Successful It Is In Masters Of The Air

This article contains spoilers for Masters of the Air episode 7.




  • Colonel Bennett reveals the 100th’s new strategy going forward in the war
  • The new strategy in episode 7 uses bombers as bait to lure out the Luftwaffe with the hope of destroying them.
  • Surprisingly successful, the bait strategy results in fewer Air Force losses and a strategic advantage.

In episode seven of Masters of the Air, Lieutenant Colonel Robert Rosenthal requests to stay on with the 100th Bomb Group, despite finishing his 25 missions, and in response, his colonel tells him the whole truth about the U.S. Army Air Forces’ upcoming strategy change: using American bombers as bait for the Luftwaffe. Though this news is a terrifying surprise, Rosenthal moves agrees to stay anyway, determined to stick with his men. Therefore, Masters of the Air sets up what is sure to be the most dangerous strategy the 100th has used thus far.

Throughout Masters of the Air, the unlucky 100th Bomb Group has seen various dangerous missions. From Regensberg to Munster, the airmen have been put through nearly impossible situations, yet miraculously, many of them have survived, even if it’s from POW camps. However, in the coming episodes, the 100th may truly be put to the test. Rather than targeting factories or German cities, the 100th will have a new goal in mind. And though it will help the Allies win the war once and for all, it could mean some truly terrible fates for the men of the 100th.


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Using Bombers As Bait Was Part Of The US’ Bigger Plan To Destroy The Luftwaffe

According to Colonel Bennett in Masters of the Air episode 7, the Eighth Air Force are changing their strategy so that the airmen will be sent on missions to bait the Luftwaffe, and in turn, destroy them. In the spring of 1944, the Allies were getting closer and closer to invading Germany, however, they still had a few obstacles in their way, one of which was the Luftwaffe.

The German air force had been a thorn in the U.S. Army Air Forces side for the entire war, and in order to overtake Germany, the Luftwaffe had to be overcome.

Therefore, the U.S. Army Air Forces implemented some new tactics. One such strategy, which was mentioned in episode 7, was the use of P-51 Mustangs. These fast-flying planes joined the ranks of the 100th’s typical B-17 bombers and offered them cover and protection against the Luftwaffe. But despite the Mustangs positive results, the U.S. Army Air Forces needed another push. Therefore, they decided to use their own bombers as bait to get the Luftwaffe in the air. Once there, the Americans could focus their attention on taking out as many Luftwaffe as possible.

Using Bombers As Bait Was Successful – And Resulted In Fewer Air Force Losses

P-51 Mustangs Masters of the Air

Despite how dangerous this plan sounds in Masters of the Air, the real life strategy was very successful. With their attention fully on destroying the Luftwaffe, squadrons like the 100th were able to send their fighter planes ahead to shoot down the Luftwaffe where they found them. Rather than playing defense as they did in the past, the Air Forces were able to come out swinging right away, taking the Luftwaffe by surprise. Ultimately, this strategy helped the U.S. Army Air Forces immensely, and the same will likely be said in Masters of the Air.

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