Hot Shots (Used Book)

Hot Shots: An Oral History of the Air Force Combat Pilots of the Korean War

Edited by Jennie Ethell Chancey and William R. Forstchen

These Korean War pilots' recollections are presented under two broad categories: ground-attack operations in the war's desperate first phase in 1950 and jet-to-jet dogfighting during the war's ensuing stalemate through 1953. Vividness of detail characterizes a pilot's memory of both types of combat, which in the case of the ground attackers consisted of flying their leftovers from World War II against enemy trains, tanks, and troops that nearly threw the UN forces into the sea. This crisis context gives one pilot's account contemporary currency with allegations that Americans killed Korean civilians during the retreat. Duane Biteman describes a "consensus," not outright orders, to stop them from crossing the last natural defense line, the Naktong River, and admits firing his plane's guns to deter such crossings--letting it hang whether or not he hit civilians. Among the dogfighters, the best story--incongruously in this fighting book--is Harold Fischer's account of becoming a POW and propaganda prop of the Chinese communists. Curiosities about bravery in the first jet war will be amply satisfied by these eyewitness anecdotes. Gilbert Taylor


Type: Used Books

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