Post WW2, Korean War, Colonial Wars

Red Wings over the Yalu – Xiaoming Zhang

Red Wings over the Yalu: China, the Soviet Union, and the Air War in Korea by Xiaoming Zhang. This is a great addition to the history of the airwar in the Korean war. Based on research on previously unavailble sources in China and Russia, Zhang have created a very interesting history from the Chinese side.


It’s not a book full of tactical descriptions, rather it is a history of the Chinese Air Force response to the conflict. Specifically, its attempt to receive as much material and training from the USSR at the same time carefully controlling its participation in the fighting. The Chinese military was well aware of its inadequacies in facing the American and South Korean air forces in the opening of hostilities. With new material regarding committed forces and actual loses, the previous American win/loss ratios have to be revised. This should come at no surprise, as the fog of war always creates in accurate statistics when the data only come from one side of the conflict. So if you are looking for stories of fighting over the Korean air space, these will not be your book. But as a reexamination of the air war from Chinese strategic level, its a great new contribution.


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