From the most important leaders and the most courageous victories to the earliest machines of flight and the most advanced Stealth technology, this book presents a fascinating look at 50 turbulent years of Air Force history.
From Iraq to Bosnia to North Korea, the first question in American foreign policy debates is increasingly: Can air power alone do the job? Robert A. Pape provides a systematic answer. Analyzing the results of over thirty air campaigns, including a detailed reconstruction of the Gulf War, he argues that the key to success is attacking the enemy's military strategy, not its economy, people, or leaders. Coercive air power can succeed, but not as cheaply as air enthusiasts would like to believe.Pape examines the air raids on Germany, Japan, Korea, Vietnam, and Iraq as well as those of Israel versus Egypt, providing details of bombing and governmental decision making. His detailed narratives of the strategic effectiveness of bombing range from the classical cases of World War II to an extraordinary reconstruction of airpower use in the Gulf War, based on recently declassified documents. In this now-classic work of the theory and practice of airpower and its political effects, Robert A. Pape helps military strategists and policy makers judge the purpose of various air strategies, and helps general readers understand the policy debates.-- "Non-Offensive Defence and Conversion Newsletter"
John Boyd may be the most remarkable unsung hero in all of American military history. Some remember him as the greatest U.S. fighter pilot ever -- the man who, in simulated air-to-air combat, defeated every challenger in less than forty seconds. Some recall him as the father of our country's most legendary fighter aircraft -- the F-15 and F-16. Still others think of Boyd as the most influential military theorist since Sun Tzu. They know only half the story.Boyd, more than any other person, saved fighter aviation from the predations of the Strategic Air Command. His manual of fighter tactics changed the way every air force in the world flies and fights. He discovered a physical theory that forever altered the way fighter planes were designed. Later in life, he developed a theory of military strategy that has been adopted throughout the world and even applied to business models for maximizing efficiency. And in one of the most startling and unknown stories of modern military history, the Air Force fighter pilot taught the U.S. Marine Corps how to fight war on the ground. His ideas led to America's swift and decisive victory in the Gulf War and foretold the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. On a personal level, Boyd rarely met a general he couldn't offend. He was loud, abrasive, and profane. A man of daring, ferocious passion and intractable stubbornness, he was that most American of heroes -- a rebel who cared not for his reputation or fortune but for his country. He was a true patriot, a man who made a career of challenging the shortsighted and self-serving Pentagon bureaucracy. America owes Boyd and his disciples -- the six men known as the "Acolytes" -- a great debt. Robert Coram finally brings to light the remarkable story of a man who polarized all who knew him, but who left a legacy that will influence the military -- and all of America -- for decades to come . . .
No other work details the tactics, restrictions, aerial maneuvers, and dangers experienced by the Army pilots and Marine aerial observers flying these missions. As young lieutenants and captains, they had at their beck and call as much authority to request and control artillery and air strikes as ground commanders of much higher rank. Raymond G. Caryl provides unrivaled examples of the cultural mores, attitudes, and recreational activity of these young pilots and observers supporting the ground forces.
In 1946, the Navy embarked on the development of the Chance Vought F7U-1 Cutlass, a high-performance, carrier-based jet fighter that would be equal, if not superior, to any land-based fighter. It was tailless for compactness and weight reduction and incorporated afterburning jet engines for transonic speed performance and unparalleled rate of climb. This is a detailed account of how its bright promise went unrealized because the technology required to fulfill it was not yet mature. More than 200 pictures, many not previously published, and almost 70 illustrations, most created for this monograph by the author, augment the 44,000 words of text.
The ultimate SR-71 book which profiles the history, development, manufacture, modification, and active service of all 50 models in the SR-71 program.
At the height of the Cold War in 1964, President Johnson announced a new aircraft dedicated to strategic reconnaissance. The Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird spy plane flew more than three-and-a-half times the speed of sound--so fast that no other aircraft could catch it. Above 80,000 feet, its pilots had to wear full-pressure flight suits similar to what was used aboard the space shuttle.
Developed by the renowned Lockheed Skunk Works, the SR-71 was an awesome aircraft in every respect. It was withdrawn from use in 1998, when it was superseded by satellite technology. Twelve of the thirty-two aircraft were destroyed in accidents, but none were ever lost to enemy action.
Throughout its thirty-four-year career, the SR-71 was the world's fastest and highest-flying operational manned aircraft. It set world records for altitude and speed: an absolute altitude record of 85,069 feet and an absolute speed record of 2,193.2 miles per hour.
The Complete Book of the SR-71 Blackbird covers every aspect of the SR-71's development, manufacture, modification, and active service from the insider's perspective of one of its pilots and is lavishly illustrated with more than 400 photos. Former pilot and author Richard Graham also examines each of the fifty planes that came out the SR-71 program (fifteen A-12s; three YF-12s; and thirty-two SR-71s) and tells each plane's history, its unique specifications, and where each currently resides.
The Tradewind was one of the largest operational flying boats ever built. The 124,000 lb. XP5Y-1 was ordered in August 1946 and was to be powered by four Allison XT-40 six-bladed, counter-rotating turbo-prop engines. The aircraft utilized the latest hull design concepts which produced a long and sleek looking aircraft. Due to engine development problems, the first flight was delayed to April 18, 1950. Besides the XP5Y-1, six R3Y-1 and five R3Y-2 transport aircraft were built. The first six aircraft had side cargo doors while the last five were built as bow-loaders. The bow-loaders increased the personnel load from 80 to 103 in the troop transport mode, and as an air ambulance, the litters were increased from 72 with 8 attendants to 92 with 12 attendants. The loading deck area was 88 feet long and 9 feet wide. The aircraft were primarily used on the Alameda to Hawaii run in 1956 were converted into aerial tankers with four drogue and reel assemblies. The aircraft were operated until April 16, 1958.
This is the remarkable story of an airplane that became a legend--with a sleek silhouette and bent wings, it doubled as a day and night fighter, could fly off carriers or from land, and served both as a dive bomber and reconnaissance plane. Filled with facts and figures, this fast-paced history begins with the nerve-wracking test flights of the 1940s and concludes with the F4Us that were active thirty-eight years later. Placed skillfully in between are the stories that gave birth to the legend: the exploits of the aces, including the Medal of Honor recipient who shot down twenty-five enemy planes, and the details of the combat missions of Charles A. Lindbergh. During thirty months of combat in World War II with the U.S. Navy and Marines, the Corsair shot down more than two thousand Japanese planes. In Korea the U-bird, as it was called, was credited with ten aerial victories. A trip down memory lane for anyone who has followed the career of this Cadillac of the props, this new paperback edition of a book first published in hardcover in 1979 offers fine historical aviation reading that presents a riveting picture of the men and machine that helped win two wars.