13 February 2015 – 22 May 2016
tuesday – sunday | 10.00 – 18.00
Before they even existed, the military value of bomb-carrying “flying machines” had already been predicted by science fiction writers such as Jules Verne and Jack London in the late nineteenth century.
The development of aerial weapons in the first half of the twentieth century was characterised by a sustained effort to consolidate and increase their potential. With “area bombing” this aerial arms race reached its pinnacle. The subsequent dropping of two atomic bombs on Japan introduced the apocalyptic dimension of nuclear war.
The exhibition follows the history of bombing as a war strategy: the early and rudimentary bomb drops during the campaign for the conquest of Libya and during the First World War; the bombing of civilians and soldiers in Ethiopia; the destruction of Spanish towns during the Civil War, as well as those in Europe during the Second World War; and the atomic bombing of Hiroshima on August 6, 1945.
The increase of planned attacks on civilian populations is a major reason why twentieth century conflicts can be described as “total war”.
The images on display are from the museum’s photographic archive and other archives.
We would like to thank RID Rivista Italiana Difesa and Storia Militare for their collaboration.