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1 Coalition Air-Land Doctrine in the North African Campaign

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Chapter Summary

This chapter argues that during the North African campaign, the air doctrine employed by the Allies merged into a single approach toward the conduct of tactical air operations. During this campaign, and in conjunction with various other factors such as improved logistics, better intelligence, and increased mobility, the Allied air forces greatly increased their effectiveness in conducting tactical air operations in conjunction with the ground forces. Although there were certainly further innovations and refinements made to the employment of tactical airpower after the successful conclusion of operations in Tunisia, it was during the North African campaign in which the Allies gained a common fundamental understanding of tactical air operations which allowed them to improve the system and to integrate new nations into operations. In exploring the origins of a coalition air-land doctrine, most writers give serious credit to the Royal Air Force (RAF), specifically the Western Desert Air Force (WDAF).

Keywords: coalition air-land doctrine; North African campaign; Royal Air Force (RAF); tactical air operations; Tunisia; Western Desert Air Force (WDAF)



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