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Habbaniya Surprise  – Battle of Britain, Iraqi Style

Habbaniya Surprise – Battle of Britain, Iraqi Style

At 2:00 on the morning of 30 April 1941, employees of the British Embassy in Baghdad were awakened by large military convoys rumbling from al-Rashid barracks, across bridges and out into the desert in the direction of the town of Habbaniya, Iraq, where the Royal Air Force (RAF) maintained its largest flight school in the […]
No Tailhook? No Way!

No Tailhook? No Way!

Out-of-fuel Spitfire and a Carrier: No options As the Supermarine Spitfire Mk Vc approached the stern of the aircraft carrier USS Wasp (CV-7), Pilot Officer Jerry Smith, RCAF, knew he was quickly running out of options. His first approach had been high and much too fast, and the 21-year-old fighter pilot knew that unless he […]

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WWII Combo Pack 600x120

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Silent Targets

Silent Targets

The glider gang behind the lines During the National WW II Glider Pilots Association’s 41st reunion in Oklahoma City in October 2011, glider pilots George L. Williams of Idaho and Norman C. Wilmeth of Oklahoma shared memories of their D-Day glider missions with the author. MISSION ELMIRA Normandy D-Day Flight Officer George L. Williams flew […]
Mission into Darkness

Mission into Darkness

Flying the SB2C Helldiver into probable suicide On June 19, 1944, Task Force-58’s (TF-58) fighter and dive-bomber aircrews celebrated the combined destruction of 380 Japanese airplanes during the Great Marianas Turkey Shoot. But our exhilaration was almost dashed the very next day when we went hunting for the fleeing Japanese fleet. Those of us flying […]

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WW II First Dogfights

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