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21 January 1943

Official description

General Ira Eaker completes paper called ‘The Case For Day Bombing’ which he presents to General Henry Arnold at the Casablanca Conference. Eaker then discusses these ideas on the merits of daylight bombing with Winston Churchill in attempt to convince him of its effectiveness. Churchill later concurs. This paper leads to development of the Combined Bomber Offensive program.


The Casablanca Directive of 21 January 1943 set out a series of priorities for the strategic bombing of Germany by the air forces based in the UK- RAF Bomber Command and the US 8th Air Force.

The directive was formulated during the Casablanca Conference of 14-24 January 1943, held at Casablanca, French Morocco. This conference was conducted between President of the United States, Franklin D. Roosevelt; British Prime Minister, Winston Churchill, and Generals Charles de Gaulle and Henri Giraud representing the Free French Forces. USSR Premier Joseph Stalin was invited but declined to attend because his attention was focused on the bitter conflict then occurring at Stalingrad.

The broad objectives of the Conference were focused on coming to an agreement among the Allied powers concerning the strategic and tactical objectives, allocation of resources and broader issues of diplomatic policy attendant to prosecuting the war aginst the Axis powers in Europe. The most provocative statement of the purpose was the agreement to pursue the "unconditional surrender" of the Axis powers.



  • Henry Arnold

    Military | General | Commanding General of Army Air Forces
    Became "chief of the Army Air Forces on June 30, 1941, and that December he got a third star. When the War Department General Staff was organized in March 1942 Arnold became commanding general of Army Air Forces. Prior to and all during World War II,...

  • Ira Eaker

    Military | Lieutenant General | Commanding General, 8th Air Force
    Commanding General of 8th AF 1 December 1942 to 5 January 1944. Following that, Eaker was given command of all Allied air forces in the MTO, and in April 1945 became Deputy CG of the USAAF. Retired July 1947. ...


Date Contributor Update
13 August 2019 13:14:02 Emily Changes to official description, description and person associations

Added event information from USAAF Combat Chronology

Shortened detailed narrative for clarity.

Date Contributor Update
20 May 2015 01:57:35 Lee8thbuff Changes to description

Lee Cunningham 19-May-2015. Minor edits and corrections of typos and spellings consistent with British norms.

Date Contributor Update
20 May 2015 00:45:50 Lee8thbuff Created entry with name, date and description

Lee Cunningham 19-May-2015. Crafted a narrative concerning the Casablanca Conference and Casablanca Directive primairly from en.wikipedia,org sources on the Casablanca Conference; the Casablanca Directive; the Pointblank Directive, and the Combined Bomber offensive.