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Below are links to online articles taken from the pages of Flight Journal.
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Preemptive Strike
America's plan to attack Japan first would have prevented Pearl Harbor

By Alan Armstrong

The Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, the U.S. military’s most humiliating defeat, need not have happened. America’s defeat in the Philippines and the Bataan Death March need not have happened. The American surrender at Wake Island need not have happened. The timely implementation and execution of Joint Army/Navy Board 355, Serial 691 (the Joint Board Plan) would have preempted Japanese aggression in Southeast Asia and in the western Pacific. Continued...

FROM THE JUNE 2006 ISSUE

Smallest Fighter, Fastest Gun
Cessna's A-37 goes to war

By Brick Eisel

"Rap 95, push it up. Troops in contact; taking a pounding." With that call, 1st Lt. John Gay knew this wouldn’t be a boring mission. But then, most missions in the Cessna A-37 Dragonfly weren’t boring. Averaging more than one mission a day since he had arrived "in-country" in April 1968, Gay had gained a healthy respect for the enemy and for his airplane. On this day, June 3, 1968, he would gain a lot more for both. Continued...

FROM THE APRIL 2006 ISSUE

The Expendables
Premature detonation of bombs takes pilots' lives

By John Lowery

The problem of aircrew killed by premature bomb detonation began early in the Vietnam Waron November 12, 1965. Capt. William “Nasty Ned” Miller was flying an F-105D when he was killed en route to a target. He was still over Thailand, and the six bombs he carried should have been secure, but as he approached the KC-135 tanker to refuel, one of the proximity-fuzed M117 (750-pound class) bombs exploded. Typically, they armed following release from the bomb rack, but somehow, one of the WW II-era VT-188 proximity fuzes had become armed before release. Continued...

FROM THE FEBRUARY 2006 ISSUE

Chance Encounter with the Lone Eagle
A Marine pilot works closely with Lindbergh on bomb-carrying Corsairs

By Col. Fran Clark, USMC Ret.

The place was a small Central Pacific Island called Roi Namur, on the eastern point of the Kwajalein Atoll in the Marshall Islands, from which our USMC fighter squadron (VMF 311, Group 31) made daily combat missions in Vought Corsairs to ensure that bypassed Japanese-held islands remained neutralized during WW II. It was September 1944. Continued...

FROM THE NOVEMBER 2005 ISSUE

Last Man Out
A Desperate Jump From a Flying Bomb

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I don’t remember anything from the time I jumped, when it was dark, until I found myself floating in the water alone with my parachute stretched out behind me. I was told later that I was out there in eight- to 10-foot, shark-infested seas for four-and-a-half hours. It wasn’t until 10 years later that I learned how close I came to not being rescued.” Continued...
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FROM THE OCTOBER 2005 ISSUE

Close Call In  An Me262
The Aerial Odyssey of Hans Busch

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by Thomas McKelvey Cleaver
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Ten years earlier, Busch had fallen in love with flying when the National Socialist Flying Corps established a program for members of the Hitler Youth in his hometown of Travemünde in northern Germany. “I was fourteen. First, we started by learning to build a glider. We cut all the ribs and the other parts under supervision and then assembled it all. It was very simple: a wing and a tail with an open wood frame for the fuselage.” Continued...
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FROM THE JUNE 2005 ISSUE

Back to Bunia
Flying for hire in dangerous West Africa

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by Robert S. Grant
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Behind me on the metal floor of our Cessna 208B Grand Caravan, heat waves were shimmering the red African dust into the air. At the aircraft’s cargo door, two airport policemen begged for cigarettes. They stopped as a much younger man in a black shirt parked his bicycle against the aircraft’s mud-spattered tires and barked at me in rapid-fire French. With bad breath and blackened teeth, he swept into the airplane and demanded to know who had authorized the muzungu (white man) to walk on the runway. Continued...
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FROM THE FEBRUARY 2005 ISSUE

To the Moon
Flying the Lunar Module

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by Jim Oberg
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Ask anybody what the first words spoken on the moon were, and youll likely get the classic answer: Houston, Tranquility Base here; the Eagle has landed.

Neil Armstrong did radio that message to earth on July 20, 1969, but they werent the first words spoken after the landing. Continued...
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FROM THE DECEMBER 2004 ISSUE

Fulton's Skyhook
An early method of crew extraction

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by Pete Purvis
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October 1962: Im a brand-new graduate of the Navy Test Pilot School at Pax Riverthe Naval Air Test Center at Patuxent River, Maryland40 miles down the Chesapeake Bay from the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis from which I graduated in 1957. Continued...
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FROM THE OCTOBER 2004 ISSUE

Afghan Frontier
Biplane Battles With Terrain
and Terrorists

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by Geoffrey Morley-Mower
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What an ugly bird, I thought, seeing my first Westland Wapiti as it stood on the narrow strip of tarmac outside C Flight hangar, 27 Squadron, Royal Air Force base at Kohat, near the southern border of Afghanistan. It was December 1938. A few squadrons of antique aircraft were helping the British army keep order in the ungovernable Northwest Frontier province, where, today, a fanatically loyal population is thought to be sheltering Osama bin Laden.
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FROM THE AUGUST 2004 ISSUE


Gunslinging
An armorer remembers the AVG
and the P-40

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by Thomas Mckelvey Cleaver
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The early P-40 was the easiest fighter in the Air Force for an armorer to work on, until the F-86 Sabre came into the inventory, remembers retired Master Sgt. Charles N. Chuck Baisden. When we in the 33rd Pursuit Squadron received P-40Bs in the fall of 1940, the P-40 was much easier to work on than the P-36. With the P-36, when you changed the synchronizing generators, it was an all-day job while lying on your back, reaching into the accessories section, and you banged your knuckles a lot. The P-40 had an in-line engine, so the synchronizers were just below the two fuselage-mounted .50s and were easy to get to. When you do that kind of work on an airplane, its the little things like that you remember.
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FROM THE JUNE 2004 ISSUE

Classmates
The Luck and Fate of Three
WW II Pilots

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by Charles O'Mahony
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On December 7, 1941, Maurice Neher was driving across the Golden Gate Bridge to visit his brother when the news of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor came over his car radio. Neher, 22, was a traveling salesman who peddled fabrics to furniture makers.
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FROM THE FEBRUARY 2004 ISSUE


The P-38's
Blackest Day
6.10.44

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by Thomas McKelvey Cleaver
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Dawn: June 10, 1944. The great complex of air bases near Foggia, Italy, bustles with activity as the sun rises. Forty-six 82nd FG Lockheed P-38J Lightnings from the 95th, 96th and 97th Fighter Squadrons, each carrying a 1,000-pound bomb on the right wing shackle and a 310-gallon ferry drop tank on the left, shake the Foggia No. 11/Vincenzo airfield as they taxi for takeoff. Over the Adriatic, 48 1st Fighter Group P-38Js of the 27th, 71st and 94th FS flying escorts will join them. One after another over southern Italy, nearly 100 P-38s take wing and climb to altitude. Their target: Ploesti-the major oil refinery complex in Europe and more than 600 miles away across the Adriatic Sea and over the mountains of Yugoslavia. The mission: to dive-bomb the Romano-Americano oil refinery, which is the primary producer of high-grade aviation gasoline for the Luftwaffe. It will be recorded as the blackest day in the history of the American fighter forces in WW II.
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FROM THE DECEMBER 2003 ISSUE


Better To Be Lucky
Than Good
A P-35A pilot in the first WWII Western Pacific Combat

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by Thomas McKelvey Cleaver
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Pacific islands, christmas eve, 1941. For the Americans reeling from the Japanese attack on December 8, there wasn't much holiday cheer. The sky was overcast, and it was raining in Lamon Bay as Japanese troops clambered into the invasion barges. Their wakes pointed the way to shore. Just to the north, the weather forced two obsolete American P-35As to descend.
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FROM THE AUGUST 2003 ISSUE


Congo Pilot
Flying cargo during a civil war

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by Robert Dedman
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This was definitely earning a buck the hard way: every one of Bob Dedman's flights started and ended in a nest of guerillas. It wasn't necessary to tell the good guys from the bad guys because they were all bad guys. Still, Dedman needed a job, so he flew cargo when and where he had to.
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FROM THE APRIL 2003 ISSUE


PV-1 Ventura in the Pacific
Lockheed's forgotten warbird

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by Ralls Clotfelter
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In this first-person account, gunner Ralls Clotfelter tells what it was like to fly bombing missions in the PV-1 Ventura, a little-known medium bomber fielded by the U.S. Navy's first land-based bomber unit. While the B-25 Mitchell may have grabbed most of the glory given medium bombers, it was under-powered, far less durable and unable to match the performance of the PV-1 Ventura.
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FROM THE FEBRUARY 2003ISSUE

"Didn't we tell you?"
A Wildcat pilot on patrol is forgotten

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by Basil Mott
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Basil Mott launched in his Wildcat from a carrier one wet overcast morning in 1945, on an antisubmarine patrol that turned out to be anything but routine. Unbeknownst to Mott, the mission's planners had forgotten to tell him about a change in course that required him to rendezvous with the carrier in a different location. In the pilot's own words, here is the story of how he handled this dangerous situation.
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FROM THE WINTER 2003 SPECIAL ISSUE

"Greater Love Hath No Man"
A B-26 crewman fights to save his friend

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by David Aiken
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A spectacular picture of a B-26 Marauder receiving a direct hit on an engine opens this compelling story about how two crewmen survived the dramatic event. George Moscovis and Robert McCluskey somehow managed to escape the doomed "Flossie's Fury" before its crash, one without even a parachute on his back!
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FROM THE DECEMBER 2002 ISSUE

Pearl Harbor's Lost P-36
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by David Aiken
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Following the most infamous attack in wartime history, only one USAAC pilot is still missing. David Aiken gives a gripping account through the words of those who resisted the December 7th attack, detailing the frantic, confused combat over Hawaii that lead to the eternal loss of 2nd Lt. Gordon Sterling.
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FROM THE OCTOBER 2002 ISSUE

A Crew Chief Remembers
To war with the Mustang

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by Merle Olmsted
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For every hour of glory in combat, ground crews put countless hours into keeping their beloved Musang ready for the fight. They are the most forgotten warriors, but if it hadn't been for them, each Mustang would have flown exactly one mission before being grounded with mechanical problems.
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FROM THE SUMMER 2002 SPECIAL ISSUE

Corsairs to the Rescue
Bent-wing birds in their finest hour

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The Marine ground troops in Korea came to look at the Corsairs as their guardian angels, always there to help them out of a tough spot. Warren Thompson gives us a pilot's eye view of the war as seen over the long nose of an F-4U as he interviews a number of Corsair pilots who tell us what it was like.
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FROM THE AUGUST 2002 ISSUE

Mission Bizerte
A very long day at the office
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by Col. Ervin Ethell, USAF (Ret.)
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Out on a patrol to determine the enemy's plane strength at the Bizerte, Tunisia, aerodrome, a group of P-38s ran into a bunch of sitting duck Ju-52s. What had turned out to be open season on these tri-motors, quickly turned into a fly-and-fight situation when the P-38s were jumped by 30 to 40 Bf 109s and Fw 190s.
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FROM THE JUNE 2002 ISSUE

Battle of the Superfighters
F-14D Tomcat vs. F/18 E/F Super Hornet

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by Bob Kress and Rear Adm. Paul Gillcrist (Ret.)
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In modern aviation, there seems to be a diversity of opinion about which fighter/bomber is better: the F-14B/D Tomcat or the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet. In this article from the Feb. 2002 issue, Kress and Gillcrist touched off a debate that still rages hotly
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FROM THE FEBRUARY 2002 ISSUE

"Wilde Sau"
Mosquito Fighters

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by Thomas McKelvey Cleaver
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In this "In the Cockpit Profile", Luftwaffe Leutnant Jorg Czypionka remembers Kommando Welter and the adventures he had while flying the Me 262 jet fighter during the final months of WW II. "It was tricky, but wonderfully capable. When you're young, that's part of the challenge."
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FROM THE APRIL 2002 ISSUE

Loose Cannon
The final flight of Lady Lynn

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by Charles O'Mahony
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Toward the end of WW II, enemy fighters were few and far between, but the ever-present flak still proved hazardous to Allied planes and their crews. B-26 flight commander Charles O'Mahony tells the story of the last flight of Lady Lynn, the Marauder that flew next to his in the 443rd Squadron on April 18, 1945.
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FROM THE FEBRUARY 2002 ISSUE

Raid on Regensburg
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by Roger McCollester
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Bombing targets in Europe wasn't easy. Flak, fighters, high altitudes and freezing conditions were just some of the hardships. The Prufening Aircraft factory just outside Regensburg, Germany was a particularly difficult target. B-24 pilot Roger McCollester tells of his bomb group's first mission there.
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FROM THE DECEMBER 2001 ISSUE

P-61 Bags a Superfort
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by The Late Arvid Shulenberger
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A P-61 crew was checking radar for an upcoming night mission when they got a distress call from a wounded B-29. After the bomber's crew bailed out, the P-61 was ordered to shoot it down. Two crewmembers tell what happened that June afternoon over Iwo Jima.
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FROM THE OCTOBER 2001 ISSUE

"Their Finest Hour"
The Battle of Britain

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by Barrett Tillman
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Churchill characterized the summer of 1940 as a time when "…so much was owed by so many to so few." The Battle of Britain was an epic struggle by heroic young men. Barrett Tillman tells it like it was.
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FROM THE OCTOBER 2001 ISSUE

Battle of the Bulge
Air Strike

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by Robert W. Browne
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When the Germans pushed into the Ardennes, the Allies responded with the largest air armada ever assembled. B-17 pilot Bob Browne gives us a pilot's-eye view of the ensuing conflict.
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FROM THE AUGUST 2001 ISSUE

Pearl Harbor
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by Barrett Tilman
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Barrett Tilman gives us an overview of the Pearl Harbor attack, including what led up to it and which types of planes were used by both sides.
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FROM THE JUNE 2001 ISSUE

The Mad Rebel
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by John Oliphint
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This account of a Mustang pilot's deadstick dive to bomb an enemy train two days after D-day gives us an incredible look into the mind of a young, trained-to-kill WW II fighter pilot. As you will see, John Oliphint does not give upever!
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FROM THE APRIL 2001 ISSUE

The Rugged Fortress
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by Robert W. Browne
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B-17 pilot Robert W. Browne tells of his love for the plane that unfailingly brought him home safely. His story is a great testament to the "Mighty Fortress."
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FROM THE WINTER 2001 WW II BOMBERS SPECIAL ISSUE

A Shot In The Dark
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by Christopher L. Stuart
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In June 1944, in the night sky over Germany, two foes met; one was victorious. Christopher Stuart tells the story of that shootdown and the poignant reunion 55 years later.
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FROM THE WINTER 2001 WW II BOMBERS SPECIAL ISSUE

Lockheed's Baby Electra
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by Kent Blankenburg and Peter Bowers with photos by Budd Davisson
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Join Peter M. Bowers as he takes us through the historical journey of the Lockheed 12A. A pilot report is included.
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FROM THE APRIL 2000 ISSUE

Airshow Pilots
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by Budd Davisson
with photos by Erik Hildebrandt
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Why and how do they do it? Read Budd Davisson's series of in-depth interviews to get a look inside the airshow pilot's mind.
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FROM THE AUGUST 2000 ISSUE

Bell's Trisonic X-2
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by Jay Miller
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An X-planes guru's exciting and detailed account of the sweptwing rocket plane's trials and tribulations.
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FROM THE AUGUST 2000 ISSUE

Russian Fighters for USN/USAF?
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by Robert W. Kress with Rear Adm. Paul Gillcrist, U.S. Navy (Ret.) and additional article by Ed Kolano
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Paul Gillcrist suggests that our newfound but uneasy friends, the Russians, may be our best source of new fighter aircraft.
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FROM THE AUGUST 1999 ISSUE

The Myth of Stealth
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by Rear Admiral Paul Gillcrist, U.S. Navy (Ret.)
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This article analyzes modern stealth technologies and examines the controversies about their effectiveness.
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FROM THE DECEMBER 1998 ISSUE

Viet-Air: Down There Amongst Them
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Story and photos by Lt. Col. Byron Hukee, USAF (Ret.)
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A combat pilot describes his experiences flying the A-1 Skyraider ("Spad") in Vietnam.
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FROM THE OCTOBER 1998 ISSUE

Who Flew First?
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by Major William J. O'Dwyer, USAF Reserve (Ret.)
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Did Gustave Whitehead fly before the Wrights? Sufficient evidence now exists for even the biggest skeptics to re-examine iron-clad positions.
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FROM THE OCTOBER 1998 ISSUE


Komet 163 - Riding The Reich's Rocket
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by Tom Atwood, based on interviews with Rudy Opitz; Historical data & photos adapted from Jeff Ethell's book, Komet The Messershmitt 163
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Luftwaffe chief test pilot Rudy Opitz tells how it was to test, developand sometimes crash-landthe fastest, most technologically-advanced fighter airplane of the Second World War.
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FROM THE AUGUST 1997 ISSUE



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