From the Magazine

Burma Banshees

Burma Banshees

The 90th Fighter Squadron in the CBI In the beginning of June 1944, while the 90th Fighter Squadron was based at Moran in India, the unit started to receive brand-new P-47s to replace its tired and obsolescent P-40Ns decorated with a painted skull on their hoods. On June 8, Lt. Col. Albert L. Evans Jr. […]
Fighter Pilot: The Hero Comes of Age

Fighter Pilot: The Hero Comes of Age

The movies and the fighter pilot were made for each other. The motion-picture concept is generally credited to Thomas Edison in 1889, and he continually improved it through the 1890s into the next century. By the time World War I had begun, crude commercial movies were available, with the first heroes frequently being cowboys with […]

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The USAF’s Contract Killers – Rental Bad Guys

The USAF’s Contract Killers – Rental Bad Guys

“Kill the F-16, right-hand turn, 18 thousand feet, over the Farms.” And so another victory is claimed in the perpetual war occurring in the Nevada skies north of Las Vegas. It is not part of some separating-a-tourist-from-his-money air-combat experience but the deadly game of “good guy” Blue Air jets fighting the “bad guy” Red Air […]
WW II Pilot Bernie Sledzick – Little Guy in  a Big Airplane

WW II Pilot Bernie Sledzick – Little Guy in a Big Airplane

Back then, junior year of high school should have been filled with coming-of-age memories, football pep rallies, and homecoming dances. Visiting colleges, choosing high-school sweethearts, and exploring possible careers should have been in the thoughts of soon-to-be seniors. Pearl Harbor changed all that. The very real world war and deciding to fight his country’s enemies […]

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Flight Journal Back issue 600 x 120

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The Pilot’s View of Iconic Aircraft – Fighting Cockpits

The Pilot’s View of Iconic Aircraft – Fighting Cockpits

The combat-aircraft cockpit has some sort of magical attraction to all who fly and those who would like to fly. It is the throne room in which aerial warriors, both past and present, sat and engaged in that rare form of combat that is built around the third dimension. It was—and is—man and machine wielding […]
The Boy Next Door Goes to War

The Boy Next Door Goes to War

Like every other new pilot in 1942, Cary Benjamin “Ben” Jones experienced an abrupt introduction to combat. At that point in the war, the enemy had been flying combat for several years, but almost every American pilot, Jones included, was new to that particular lethal game. Still, he flew P-40s in the Mediterranean, Africa, Sicily, […]

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Martha’s Vineyard’s Workin’ Wacos

Martha’s Vineyard’s Workin’ Wacos

Contrary to a bit of universally accepted fake news, the 1940s are not actually over. The decade is still alive and well, although somewhat disassociated from the main landmass of America, and lagging behind the new millennium. If you don’t believe that, head for Katama Airfield, 1B2, owned by Edgartown, Massachusetts. And don’t plan on […]
Voodoo Magic: Learning to dance with a high-spirited lady

Voodoo Magic: Learning to dance with a high-spirited lady

By 1959, Major Ernest Craigwell, Tuskegee Airman and a current Air Defense Command fighter pilot, had already enjoyed his fair share of time flying hot jets and a certain modest measure of notoriety. Two years earlier, his role flying F-51s alongside Korean War legend Dean Hess had been dramatized in the popular Universal-International feature film […]

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A formation of colorful AT-6 Texans line up for a photo pass.

The AT-6 Texan — from the Cockpit

The best indication of how good a trainer the AT-6 Texan was/is can be seen by the fact that here we are forty years into the jet age and there are still countries around the world using the North America aerial classroom as first-line trainers. As recently as five years ago, major air forces still […]
The Grumman Avenger

The Grumman Avenger

This impressive Grumman TBM-3E Avenger is based at the American Airpower Museum in Farmingdale, Long Island, NY. The museum is located at the Republic Airport. The Avenger entered U.S. service in 1942, and first saw action during the Battle of Midway. Despite the loss of five of the six Avengers on its combat debut, it […]
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