Tom Harrison Pens about The 445th Bomber Group’s Notorious Mission

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New book follows the story of the 445th heavy bomber group that flew a WW II mission from Tibenham, England to bomb Henschel motor works in the area of Kassel, Germany

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On the 27th of September 1944, the 8th United States Army Air Force unleashed a maximum effort air strike against targets in North Central Germany. There were 35 B-24 Liberator heavy bombers which left the 445th Bomber Group home field of Tibenham UK that fateful morning. That afternoon only four returned to their home base. This mission is marked as one of the most notorious in WWII military aviation history. Author Tom Harrison uncovers this baffling and tragic event in his new publication, Kassel.

The 445th bomb group was scheduled to bomb the Henschel Motor Works, sole manufacturers of the dreaded (King) Tiger II tanks in Kassel, Germany. The Group was to lead the 2nd Combat Bomber Wing, one of three making up the 2nd Combat Bomber Division. Due to reasons unknown for nearly 70 years, this bomber Group was within four minutes of reaching the Henschel motor works target on its bomb run, when suddenly, the formation deviated away from the bomb run, leaving behind its fighter escorts and the defenses of surrounding bomber guards and bombed arguably the wrong target.

Isolated from the fighter and bomber stream protection, the 445th was attacked by over 120 German fighter interceptors equipped with 20mm and 30mm cannons resulting in 25 of the 35 bombers being destroyed within a period of 3-4 minutes in the most intense aerial combat encounter with the greatest percentage losses ever recorded in military aviation history. Of the 10 remaining, six crashed trying to limp back to Tibenham and only four made it home safely. The intense attack resulted in the loss of 117 USAF airmen and 18 German fighters. The official USAF conclusion penned October 23, 1944 blamed the lead bomber crew for navigational error, specifically the radar navigator. This bomber crew did not make it to Tibenham.

Kassel offers a different approach to the problem of why the 445th mysteriously deviated from the bomb run so close to their target Kassel. It describes for the first time a purely scientific and technical analysis of this problem. This approach results in a solution and leads to an understanding as to why the 8th USAF had to blame the lead bomber crew and conceal the truth. Thought-provoking, harrowing and poignant, this book is a gripping account of a notorious mission and a testament to human bravery and self-sacrifice.

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KASSEL * by Tom Harrison
Publication Date: May 23, 2013
Trade Paperback; $62.49; 190 pages; 978-1-4836-0244-8
Trade Hardback; $66.99; 190 pages; 978-1-4836-0245-5
eBook; $3.99; 978-1-4836-0246-2

Members of the media who wish to review this book may request a complimentary paperback copy by contacting the publisher at (888) 795-4274 x. 7879. To purchase copies of the book for resale, please fax Xlibris at (812) 355-4079 or call (888) 795-4274 x. 7879.

For more information on self-publishing or marketing with Xlibris, visit To receive a free publishing guide, please call (888) 795-4274.

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