1943: Ploesti Raid a total disaster


The August 1 "Operation Tidal Wave" bombing of Ploesti (1/3 of Hitler's oil production) achieved little. 54 of the 177 bombers were shot down and 53 written off. Some say that the Germans got wind of the raid & were ready.

WI they had marshalled enough fighters & flak to bring down literally every bomber, so that not one returned to base. What effect would this have had on the USAF morale at this early stage of the bombing of Germany: would it have spurred on a desire for revenge? Or have put insurmountable lead into the boots of the crews? Or no difference from OTL?
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umm, I think it was considered a disaster. wasn't attempted again for another year. read the book "Ploesti",, it goes into great detail about the mission and planning,,,a la "the longest day".