Lebach, there is no need for you to excuse yourself. There are several ways to look at one problem, and you have argued your case well, with sound arguments. It seems we shall never reach a consensus on this particular matter, which is no reason for fresh views not appearing. I just mean it is perfidy to aim for children. know that sounds provocative. but necessary to show how onsided the most people look at the topic. by the way, even if "German historians have drastically reduced the casualty numbers" that doesnt relativize the idea behind the area bombing directive Of course it is perfidy, unless you are exactly looking for "involuntary martyrs" as some people do nowadays. However war has long ceased to be at a personal level long ago, if it ever was so. It was ages ago that conflict ceased to be resolved by say champions duel. When you are dropping 12 x 500lb bombs from 6000 metres, or pushing a button from a safe bunker in Nevada, you realise you will be killing children, pensioners, hospital patients, etc. But you won't see their eyes. Nowadays the wheel has turned full circle, and some armies (some, I said, you know whom I'm talking about) take trouble to employ maximum precision weapons to avoid collateral damage, some (again you know whom I'm talking about) even take the trouble to telephone their victims before the attack to warn them off. But in the end are again branded as criminals. Sorry for the off topic rant.