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This fourth volume in the series covers operations from the capture of Caen and Cherbourg through to the advance up to the Rhine and Operation Market Garden. It is recommended to all readers as a fundamental expansion of the accounts of the ground campaign already published by MLRS, and needs to be read. Complete with all appendices and maps.
This monograph covers the subject of air support of ground forces in all the major theatres of operations in the Second World War. It describes operations in France and the Low countries in 1940, in the Mediterranean, in Burma and in Normandy from 1944. There are 14 significant appendices, one of which relates the history of the German Ground Attack Arm. The book adds to the knowledge of this aspect of the air/land battle, and is a complimentary volume to Air Support in the Second World War (also published by MLRS) which is arranged in a different way. Readers are strongly advised to purchase both volumes for comparison purposes, and for the differences in emphasis between the two.
This is a companion volume to Air Support (also published by MLRS). It has a different emphasis on the subject and, importantly, includes a number of coloured maps not in the other volume. It starts in Norway, continuing through France 1940, the Mediterranean, Burma and Malaya, and then covers the Normandy operations. The illustrations cover important areas of operations and organisation, and include a detailed map of the German defences at Cassino, and of Operations Crusader, Goodwood and Varsity. Once more, readers are advised that this volume should be read in conjunction with Air Support to get a full picture of this important aspect of the air/land battle as fought in the Second World War.
Air/Sea Rescue was of great importance in the Second World War, for many aircraft had to come down in the Channel and elsewhere, and their rescue from a watery grave was a great achievement. This book covers both the operational side of this service and the equipment needed to try to save airmen from death by drowning or exposure.
Many readers will already be familiar with Otway's history of airborne forces and with Bill Buckingham's equally important history of the development of airborne forces (also published by MLRS). This is the story from the point of view of the Air Ministry and is a very good companion to the already mentioned texts. It covers the initial stages of formation of airborne forces, and then covers the operations. Appendices add more detail about parachutes, gliders, aircraft, operating procedures and other factors. Accompanied by some valuable maps and photographs.
In any picture or film of London during the war present in the sky was almost inevitably one or more barrage balloons. The balloons were attached to their winches with heavy duty cables, and it was the cables that presented the danger - any aircraft flying onto the cables would be damaged - most often destroyed. This is the story of the balloons and how they were used throughout the war as a static but effective defense against German and other aircraft. The narrative starts in 1914 and continues to 1945. With all appendices and maps.
This volume continues the story begun in Volume I, and starts with the last weeks of peace. It then covers the loss of Borneo, air attacks on Singapore and its fall, operations in Sumatra and Java and the First Burmese Campaign. Strengths of both RAF and Japanese air elements are given in detail in the appendices as well as a summary of army strength in Malaya on 7 December 1941 and a note on Japanese air forces in Malaya.
The German V-bomb campaign was meant to bring Great Britain to her knees with an unrelenting hail of pilotless missiles causing destruction and bringing death in an overwhelming manner. The fact that it failed despite some isolated successes and how it failed is the theme of this volume of the Air Defence of Great Britain series. The volume stands alone and is one of the most important and complete analyses of this new style of warfare which had a significant legacy after the war. Complete with all tables and appendices.
This detailed description of flying training in the RAF covers the period from 1919 to 1944. It is a historical and chronological account of the subject and includes training before the war, the Empire Air Training Scheme, the crisis after May 1940, the development of training from November 1940 and the 'New Deal.' The writing is informative and of great value to all who want to know the real details of how fighter and bomber crew were trained, where and when.
This is a history of aircraft maintenance, an essential service of the RAF throughout the war. Aircraft were often damaged by action other than enemy, they needed to be moved, serviced and maintained at all times, and even assembled from kits rather like aircraft models today. It may seem obvious, but the creation and use of a servicing branch was absolutely vital to the well-being of the RAF and the safety of aircrew, and this is the sometimes prosaic, sometimes exciting story of the ones who stayed on the ground.
The strategic importance of Malta to the United Kingdom in World War two cannot be overemphasised. Naval forces based there protected seaborne traffic in the Mediterranean, and the air units protected the island. There was also an offensive capability which helped disrupt supplies to North Africa and to the Italian and German forces there. The fortitude of the Maltese during the innumerable air raids was rewarded with a George Cross at the end of the war. This is the complete history of the island and the battles that went on over and around it.
Providing the personnel to perform military tasks is often problematic even in wartime - each of the services needs men (and women) and skills have to be assessed to try to put the right people in the right place - with varying degrees of success. This RAF narrative shows how it went about its manning and how it solved the many problems that arose. It includes details of the Royal Auxiliary Air Force and the Reserve.
The war in North Africa saw the development of tactical air support by the RAF as well as standard interdiction and bombing operations. This is the first os a series of volumes covering RAF operations in the area, and looks at operations in Libya and the western desert from September 1939 tp June 1940. The rest of this series will follow. The Italians were the first enemy and their dispositions and operations are described, as well as the British conquest of Cyrenaica, the retreat from Agheila to the Egyptian frontier, the encirclement of Torbruk and Operation Battleaxe. This was 'pure' warfare in the sense that few civilians were involved, and bombing was tactical, and this account is a first class work on the period and the theatre.
The war in the air was fought as a 24/7 battle and this is the story of the defence against German night air attacks in the first crucial first phase. During the day the air war was marked by growing German reluctance to send bombers over England during the day after September 1940 but at night the bombers came. The defences had to be assembled and nourished while the Luftwaffe made nightly raids particularly on London and the main ports. This is the story of that battle from the height of the daytime Battle of Britain through to the dreary nights of December 1941. An exceptional piece of historical writing, with all appendices included.
This is the first in a series of volumes covering the Invasion of France in 1944 from the air point of view. This first volume covers the period from the reorganisation of the RAF for cross-channel operations through to D-Day. It gives detailed information on organisation, deception, the Overlord plans, the employment of airborne forces, the air plan for D-Day, and the strategic and tactical plans to delay enemy reinforcements. Of real significance to all students of D-Day because of the depth of its insight into the planning stages.
There is a military adage which (edited) says "Poor planning produces poor performance" and this was never more true than in the preparation of the Overlord plan. That so much went either as it should, or nearly so, is a tribute to the administrative planning which went on before 6 June 1944. This narrative gives a great deal of information on the subject of the administrative preparations, but it is not a mere catalogue but a lively account of what to many people (service and civilian alike) is a totally non-subject: but it had to be done. The book looks at the reasons for the detailed administration plans, the evolution of strategy and the plans, the agencies involved, the Bolero plan, grand strategy for Overlord, COSSAC, USAAF, and the important "Mulberry" and "Gooseberry" inventions, supply by air and casevac and where the RAF fitted into the overall plan. Readers will be well rewarded for an exacting read of what is a fundamental document.
The continuing narrative of air elements in D-Day and its aftermath. This volume concentrates on D-Day itself and is complete with all detail and maps. The volume looks at purely air matters - bombing and enemy air force suppression, and at air-land operations - ground support, airborne landings, and all other matters involving air power. It is a ‘must-have’ for any study of D-Day in that it expands and clarifies much of the land warfare picture (already published by MLRS relating to the landings by ground forces [and see I Corps and XXX Corps narratives, and the US Beaches narrative already published]). Importantly it includes operations by the USAAF.