From: Ottawa, Canada
I don't know about a German Strat. Bombing campaign.
First off, Germany has very very few fighters with any kind of range and those that they do have are either better served as bombers (110s) or don't show up until later in the war. This means that the bombers will often have to go unescorted and that's made worse because their bomber's A2A values are also lousy.
The CW's strat bombers have generally poor a2a factors, and so do many of the USA's. That doesn't stop them from launching raids, even unescorted ones, into Germany, into the teeth of German fighter cover.
I already acknowledge that Germany isn't good at strategic bombing: "German air forces are not very good at strategic air warfare". The point is not for them to attempt to beat the Allies at what is the (Western) Allied way of war par excellence. The point is to force the Allies to do something they don't want to do - defend their own factories.
As France I'd love to see Germany Strat. bombing me. It means those planes are not Ground Striking/Supporting me (and maybe the CW can intercept them for me), and if he went anywhere other than a front line factory I could actually send a FTR after them with an advantage in A2A combat. I suppose if Germany had left over planes on the turn Paris goes down and there aren't any French FTRs... but then what's France going to do with those build points anyway (unless they're sending them to the CW at that time).
Yes, of course during the summer campaign the Germans are too busy supporting their offensive operations to be bothered with strategically bombing French targets, of which all the key ones should soon fall to Germany. That leaves three turns of relatively bad weather during the fall, winter and spring of 39/40 where they may well have air units sitting idle with nothing to do... but strat bomb French factories.
The French have a real shortage of fighters during that period, and a German strat bombing campaign vs. France could also be about trying to force them to fight, since Germany can make good on air unit losses much more quickly than France. And if the French don't give battle, hey, you get a badly needed +1 to the die roll.
Against the CW, the same applies until the fall of France. Then it's probably more of a wash. The Germans will have more FTRs that can reach London so will probably have a bit of an advantage in the A2A tables, but after factoring in the higher cost of losses (FTRs + LND + more pilots vs. FTRs + less pilots) I bet its pretty close to a break even situation. Given that, it seems a foolish proposition if you're planning to go into Russia. Might be worth it if you're planning a Med campaign and/or Sea Lion.
Why send bombers with fighter cover to London if the CW keeps their fighters there? Why not head for the mid-country where there are more targets? Force the CW to leave a fighter there where it can't fight you in France or Belgium.
You need never actually launch a strategic raid into the teeth of CW fighter cover as long as your threat forces the CW to put fighter cover to defend every factory, and as long as you back it up with raids on undefended factories and the occasional escorted raid to make him exhaust or divert his fighters. A single bomber that can reach any factory in England requires 3-5 CW fighters to stop it (London area, middle region, Scotland, N. Ireland, maybe SW region), and if it has 2-4 a2a factors it could conceivably launch raids against air cover if they are weaker air units (Gladiators, Defiants & such).
Once the Western Allies are basing 12-range fighters in England, your strategic bombing days are effectively over except, perhaps, for nuisance raids on Belfast if they don't base a fighter or two in interception range, or if you have a bomber or two left over and the Allies have committed most/all their fighters for the turn.
Against Russia? Be serious... Russia's going to move her factories out of the way before you can bomb them until the lines stabalize. Now, once that's happened you have the same situation as France... only this time you are soon going to be on the defensive.
Ah, but I am serious. There are quite a few Soviet factories that cannot be railed at all (the red factories), and the Soviets are rarely able to evacuate every single one of their blue factories before you cut off their rail lines, even if you do not take the cities. Further, the Soviets will often rail factories to locations that your longer-range bombers could conceivably strike (Murmansk and Baku come to mind). Germany will not always have the bombers to spare to launch a raid or two, especially not while they are on the warpath, however there will be moments when German forces/HQs are flipped and will not be moving much more, or perhaps when Germany is doing air or supercombined actions to bring the air force forward, where they will have the air units & missions to launch a few raids and stretch Soviet air defences. There will also be periods of bad weather (save for Storm/Blizzard) where you will not be launching many attacks even when you are on the strategic offensive. If you have not seized Leningrad or Moscow or Stalingrad (which all have red factories), you can bomb them.
And when things turn around, provided the USSR has not cracked the line yet, where do you think the USSR wants its fighters? At the point of attack helping USSR bombers achieve their own ground strike, ground support, paradrop or strategic bombing missions, or defending against annoying long-range German bombers? Unlike the Western Allies, the USSR does not have good fighters in terms of either range or a2a factors.
To recapitulate a point in my first post on German strategic bombing, Germany does not have the ability to launch the kind of strategic air war that the Western Allies can. End of story. So it shouldn't try.
What Germany should do, when and where the opportunity arises, is force the Allies to divert units, effort and attention to defending their factories instead of either defending against the immediate German land/air onslaught or taking the fight to German factories or units and to make them pay for failing to do so. They may not always succeed - that is up to the dice - but every unit the Allies have defending somewhere from 42 on is a unit they don't have attacking somewhere, and, provided the Allies are commiting more units to defend factories than the Axis are to attacking them, that is a win for the Axis.