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From the Magazine

Germany’s V-2 Rocket

Germany’s V-2 Rocket

The German word was Vergeltungswaffe, which means “retribution weapon” but is normally translated as “vengeance.” Generically, the V program included a family of advanced concepts beginning with the V-1 cruise missile. The “buzz bomb” carried an 1,800 lb. warhead at around 400mph, but was susceptible to defending fighters and anti-aircraft guns. (See Flight Journal, June […]
Land Now! 9/11 – An Anniversary Worth Remembering

Land Now! 9/11 – An Anniversary Worth Remembering

We at Flight Journal consider it to be an honor to present stories of those who were directly involved in the events of 9/11 as pilots or flight crew. This is yet another view of the event that has shaped our present and our future. “Our plane has been hijacked. Flight attendant #1 stabbed. Flight […]

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ITA 1/72 Shawnee "Flying Banana" - 600x120

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The Ever-Present Sidewinder

The Ever-Present Sidewinder

Kern County, California, 1952: a 1949 Kaiser raced down a desert runway with a streamlined object fitted to a crude bracket on the right side. Lacking a wind tunnel, the passengers — engineers in the front and back seats — took notes on the model’s aerodynamic performance. They were testing the XAAM-N-7, the world’s first […]
In Theater: Operation Magic Carpet

In Theater: Operation Magic Carpet

In the summer of 1945, the U.S. military spawned a generation of poets who shared one sentiment: “Those who want to be a hero, They number almost zero. Those who want to be civilians… Gee—they number in the millions!” As early as 1943, the Pentagon began contingency planning for returning millions of personnel from overseas […]

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HSG 1/12 Honda NSR500 600x120

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Ending The Greatest War

Ending The Greatest War

In the 70 years since VJ-Day, few wars have ended in outright victory. America tied in Korea, abandoned South Vietnam, quit while ahead on points in Iraq in 1991, declared victory there in 2011, and now plans to flee Afghanistan. The current global war against radical Islam is likely to last for generations. Israel won […]
Photo via Stan Piet.

In Theater: Game Changer

In the world’s largest theater of war, three aircraft proved decisive: a Navy dive bomber, a Navy fighter, and an Army bomber. The Douglas SBD Dauntless won essential victories in the year after Pearl Harbor: Coral Sea, Midway, and the Guadalcanal battles. Thereafter, Japan never regained the strategic initiative. Grumman’s F6F Hellcat defeated Japanese airpower. […]

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Hellcat at Work: a digital image at the right price…free!

Hellcat at Work: a digital image at the right price…free!

The mighty Grumman F6F Hellcat needs no introduction. It carried the fight to the enemy throughout the Pacific and emerged as the most successful fighter of the Pacific Theater of Operations. More important, it was the airplane that could be counted on to bring a pilot home almost regardless of the amount of damage it […]
Gallery: Hurricane Hawker

Gallery: Hurricane Hawker

The Overlooked Warrior by Barrett Tillman Nearly 20 years after WW I, the RAF still flew biplane fighters. Consequently, the Hawker Hurricane made its mark as Britain’s first monoplane fighter, heralding a new era in military aviation. Designed by Sir Sydney Camm and first flown in late 1935, the Hurricane featured a thick airfoil that […]

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In Theater: Chariots of the Vanquished

In Theater: Chariots of the Vanquished

By Stan Piet By mid-August 1945, the Japanese Empire was near collapse. Months of sustained bombing and two atomic attacks had devastated its prime cities and a widening blockade was strangling its faltering war industry and starving citizens. But Tokyo’s ingrained militaristic “fight to the death culture” still held sway, and an all out invasion […]
Armorers reload a Hurricane's .303 machine guns, a vital part of preparing for the next sortie. (Photo courtesy of EN-Archive)

Iconic Firepower: Guns of the Battle

Ordnance Philosophies Differed By Barrett Tillman How do you kill an airplane? Essentially there are only three methods: Destroy the airframe, such as severing a wing spar. Destroy the powerplant or systems, rendering the aircraft unable to maneuver or maintain altitude. Kill or incapacitate the crew. The aircraft weapons of the Battle of Britain were […]
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