From Fabric Wings to Supersonic Fighters and Drones

A History of Military Aviation on both sides of the Northwest Frontier

Brian Cloughley, Lester Grau, Andrew Roe

 
Date Published :
February 2015
Publisher :
Helion and Company
Illustration :
40 b/w photos, 3 maps
Format Available    QuantityPrice
Hardback
ISBN : 9781909982826
Pages : 208
Dimensions : 9 X 6 inches
-
+
In stock
$59.95

Overview
-

The famed, and dangerous Northwest Frontier of India was a rocky, mountainous land between Afghanistan and the settled districts of the Punjab. A land of hardened Pashtun warriors, fervent clerics and too little water, once the problem of the British Indian Army and the Scouts it is now the problem of the Army of Pakistan and the Frontier Corps. Military aviation above the frontier has had little real attention, except for a number of lighthearted memoirs about the challenges of flying antiquated aircraft over precipitous terrain. The Pakistani Air Force has taken over the job with more modern aircraft, but it is only since 2004 that independent American activities in the ongoing fight against militancy in northern Pakistan have drawn widespread attention to air power over the frontier. But any wider study of the utility and challenges of air power in the region would be incomplete without a detailed look at the Soviet-Afghan War. Aviation came to Afghanistan relatively early and shares many of the same challenges as aviation in the neighboring Northwest Frontier Region.

The purpose of this book is to provide a compact, yet comprehensive history of air power in this region. It covers key aviation events, technological advances and shortcomings from the days of the fabric-covered bi-wing De Haviland bombers to the modern jets and armed drones of today. This look at the British, Pakistani, Afghan, Soviet and US efforts over this rugged terrain concludes with a number of pertinent contemporary lessons learnt that will apply to future military aviation in this region.

REVIEWS
-

Citing that key to any present-day military strategy is the employment of air power, Cloughley, Grau, and Roe note that it has been frequently overlooked or ignored in the historic record via the North-West frontier of India. While much has been written about land operations, public work on the historical use of air power in the region has often been limited or treated superficially. They aim to pull the historical narrative together into a coherent whole and to examine the advancement and challenge of air power over the North-West Frontier. They argue that there is much to be learned from the past that can be applied to the future and that some campaigns have more than others foreshadowed the coming pattern of modern war. Nine chapters are: aviation and guerrilla war; ‘Pink's war'; good god, sir, are you hurt?; evacuation by air; the troublesome 1930s; air power in the frontier; aviation on the other side of the north-west frontier; ‘busplat' and fallible humans; present-day parallels and prognostications.

- Protoview , December 2015

More from this publisher