Question in title. All them seem to be heavily damaged but with half surviving at least. Cant find any that were wiped out.

  • $\begingroup$ I could be mistaken, but strategic bombers usually fly solo (such as the B-2). Did you mean heavy bombers, such as those used during WW2? I ask for clarification because you say half were wiped out, which hints at big formations. $\endgroup$ – ymb1 Sep 5 '19 at 21:40
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    $\begingroup$ In WWII strategic bombers flew missions to support the national strategy - B-17s and Lancasters bombing cities. Bombers not flying strategic missions were supporting specific military tactical objectives, interdiction etc., and are therefor called tactical bombers - B-25s attacking rail yards. Or B-17s bombing troop concentrations in Normandy; a strategic bomber being used for a tactical mission. $\endgroup$ – John K Sep 6 '19 at 0:42
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    $\begingroup$ Ploesti's the worst one I can think of. About a third of the bomber force shot down. $\endgroup$ – John K Sep 6 '19 at 1:02

If you mean a "heavy bomber flight" being one that was completely destroyed, then yes... And it happens to be a very famous one...

The Dolittle Raid consisted of 16 bombers that bombed Tokyo on April 18, 1942. All but 1 of the original 16 aircraft crashed in China, with one landing in Russia.

enter image description here Source: Wikimedia

  • $\begingroup$ Not sure this counts. Wiped out to me means "shot down". $\endgroup$ – John K Sep 6 '19 at 0:37
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    $\begingroup$ @JohnK A plane that crashes due to weather, malfunction, or other actions not due to hostile forces is still just as lost as one shot down. I think maybe "didn't return safely" is a better definition. $\endgroup$ – Carey Gregory Sep 6 '19 at 1:06
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    $\begingroup$ This raid was a one-way mission from the inception. $\endgroup$ – Dohn Joe Sep 6 '19 at 8:03
  • $\begingroup$ @DohnJoe: Weren't they originally planned to land in airfields in southern China, get refuelled and rearmed there, and then fly back the other way (with them only being all forced to bail out over occupied China due to them having to launch the raid too early [due to a suspected Japanese submarine sighting], when they were still out of range of the destination airfields)? $\endgroup$ – Sean Oct 7 '19 at 1:55

Yes there undoubtedly has been, at least if you are willing allow that the concept of a "strategic bomber" may include a world-war-two-era twin-engine bomber attempting to accomplish a strategic objective. I'm thinking of some of the early RAF raids carried out by bombers such as Hampdens or Whitworths or similar, or raids by the French before their surrender.

The answer to most "has there ever been" questions is "yes".

Admittedly this answer is short on actual details/ examples, and could be improved.


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