Latest Issue

Moral bombing?

Area bombing of German cities in the second world war was unnecessary, but was not a crime. Sometimes ends can justify means

By Michael Axworthy   March 2006

Among the Dead Cities by AC Grayling (Bloomsbury, £20)

At the beginning of this excellent book on the morality of area bombing in the second world war, AC Grayling explains the origins of his personal interest in the aerial war between 1939 and 1945. As a small boy in the 1950s, he fantasised about being a fighter pilot in the battle of Britain. He made model aircraft from kits and knew all the different varieties of fighters and bombers on both sides. Like him and thousands of others, I did the same-and in that…

Register today to continue reading

You’ve hit your limit of three articles in the last 30 days. To get seven more, simply enter your email address below.

You’ll also receive our free e-book Prospect’s Top Thinkers 2020 and our newsletter with the best new writing on politics, economics, literature and the arts.

Prospect may process your personal information for our legitimate business purposes, to provide you with newsletters, subscription offers and other relevant information.

Click here to learn more about these purposes and how we use your data. You will be able to opt-out of further contact on the next page and in all our communications.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to

More From Prospect