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The Forgotten Air Force: French Air Doctrine in the 1930's (Smithsonian History of Aviation and Spaceflight Series)by Anthony Christopher Cain
Synopses & Reviews
Germany's 1940 defeat of the Armée de l'air, perhaps the world's preeminent air force at the close of World War I, is commonly attributed to incompetent French leadership. Drawing on primary French sources not previously available to historians, Cain argues that in the 1930s the French Air Force was intellectually and operationally constrained, owing to an insufficient interest in and understanding of aviation by the Army and Navy high commands and the French government. But there was certainly no shortage of qualified officers who understood the capabilities of a modern air force in warfare.
Through this groundbreaking and innovative analysis, Cain brings a measure of balance to European interwar history.
Book News Annotation:
The Arm<'e>e de l'air has received little attention from military historians because it was largely blamed for the French defeat by Germany in 1940. That blame is not necessarily misplaced, says US Air Force pilot and trainer Cain, but he looks at the reasons for the failure of the French air force, both to fill in the historical record and to identify errors that should be avoided when creating a new organization.
Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
Germany's 1940 defeat of the Arme de l'air, perhaps the world's preeminent air force at the close of World War I, is commonly attributed to incompetent French leadership. Drawing on primary French sources not previously available to historians, Cain argues that while lack of interest in and understanding of aviation by the French government and military high commands constrained the French Air Force, there was no shortage of qualified officers who understood the capabilities of a modern air force in warfare.
About the Author
Lt. Col. Anthony Christopher Cain, USAF, was recognized by the Air Education and Training Command as Educator of the Year in 1995. He is a veteran B-52 radar navigator with more than 3,000 flying hours, and he earned the Distinguished Flying Cross while flying twenty-six combat missions during Operation Desert Storm.
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