THE FORGOTTEN FIFTH
A Classic Photographic Chronology of the
Fifth Air Force in Action in the Pacific in WW2

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visits since 11 December 1998

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A B26 Martin Marauder

This photographic work is the most diverse and encyclopaedic ever published about the Fifth Air Force in WW2 - it contains a collection of rare photos with detailed captions, each of which tells a complete story, and concentrates on human interest and historical minutiae. Conducted with painstaking research, the author has drawn on a lifetime of cataloguing and documenting the most esoteric parts of this unique air force. The photos guide you through the course of the Fifth’s rich history - from its retreat to Australia to its occupation of Japan three and a half years later. This classic relies on two main features – the first being rare combat and historical photos, the second being the quality and interest contained in the meticulous captions which support them. All source material is original, and draws on post-war wreck discoveries, interrogation reports, captured Japanese documents, intercepts of enemy transmissions, declassified US unit histories, wartime debriefings, post-war interviews with US and Japanese veterans, and even maintenance records! Much information derives exclusively from Australian and Japanese archives, inaccessible to researchers until recently.

The Fifth’s extensive history owes much to the divergent personalities who forged an indelible mark on the Pacific war - leaders such as its Commander, General George Churchill Kenney, along with its other leaders, pilots and groundcrew. Of course also covered are its aces and others, but the Fifth’s history was also enriched by a diversity of outsiders such as controversial aviator-hero Charles Lindbergh, entertainers Bob Hope, John Wayne and Carole Landis, and even future president Lyndon B. Johnson, awarded a Silver Star which would be questioned after the war.

Also published for the first time is a must for every aviation historian - an index of more than 1,500 Fifth Air Force aircraft identities, their units and nicknames, including every type and variant of aircraft flown by the Fifth.

- text of 48,502 words is fully indexed, individual aircraft are indexed by type, nickname and serial number;

- laser-printed in 11-point Times-Roman and Frisky fonts on bond enamel A4 paper with 300 gms binding cover;

- 154 black and white laser-reproduced photos from private and official collections, including Australian, US and Japanese archives;

Each photo caption reveals diverse and elaborate detail. Examples include:

 

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Michael Claringbould