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From difficult weather conditions to unreliable missile armament to unequal rules of engagement, this book tells the story of the challenges faced by the F-4 and MiG-21 pilots. Using first-hand accounts wherever possible the author draws us into the dangerous world experienced by American and North Vietnamese pilots. Influential leaders and tacticians will be profiled to provide a comparative evaluation of their contrasting skills. This book will also reveal the technical specifications of each jet with an analysis of the weaponry, avionics and survival devices of the Phantom and MiG-21. The fighters' strengths and weaknesses will be compared also, including turn radius, performance at altitude, range and structural integrity. This was an intense and deadly duel between vastly different rivals. In the Phantom, a second crewmember and good radar compensated for the difficulty of providing command and control at long distances from the targets. However, the F-4's smoky engines and considerable bulk made it visible at much further distances than the small, clean MiG-21 and Phantoms were often hit by unseen MiG attacks. On the other hand, the F-4s eight-missile armament compared favorably with the two-missile provision of the MiG. Often pilot skill, if not luck, would be the determining factor between the smaller, faster MiG and bigger, better-gunned Phantom. First-person extracts will reflect on the dangers of these aerial duels while graphics based on records of engagement and technical manuals will illustrate the experience of air combat as they struggled to overcome their shortcomings and survive their deadly duels.
Osprey's study of the role played by F-8 Crusader Units in the Vietnam War (1955-1975). Known to its pilots as the 'last of the gunfighters' due to its quartet of Colt-Browning Mk 12 20 mm cannon, the F-8 Crusader was numerically the most populous fighter in the US Navy at the start of America's involvement in the Vietnam conflict in 1964 - some 482 F-8C/D/Es equipped 17 frontline units. It enjoyed great success against North Vietnamese Mig-17s and Mig-21s during the Rolling Thunder campaign of 1965-68, officially downing 18 jets, which represented 53 per cent of all Mig claims lodged by Navy squadrons during this period.
This book covers the actions fought between two of the best known fighters of the Vietnam War, in action over the North during the early years of the conflict.Revered by Naval Aviators as the "last of the gunfighters" due to its quartet of Colt-Browning Mk 12 20 mm cannon (its great naval rival, the F-4 Phantom II, was exclusively armed with missiles), the F-8 Crusader enjoyed great success against VPAF MiG-17s during the Rolling Thunder campaign of 1966-68. The fighter was credited with 18 kills, 14 of which were MiG-17s. Things did not go all the Crusader's way, however, as VPAF pilots used the MiG-17's unequalled low-speed manoeuvrability, small size and powerful cannon armament to take the fight to their gun- and missile-equipped foes. The North Vietnamese pilots claimed ten F-8s and one unarmed photo-recce RF-8 shot down, although only four of these successes could be matched with known US Navy losses. Nevertheless, the duels fought between these two aircraft were some of the hardest of the war, as the Crusader pilots did their level best to defend vulnerable carrier-based attack aircraft striking at targets deep in North Vietnam.
The entry of the United State's premier jet interceptor into the Korean War was triggered by the ever-increasing presence of the Soviet-built MiG-15 south of the Yalu River. The possibility of the USAF losing air supremacy over the Korean Peninsula was unacceptable. The 4th Fighter Wing got the call for combat in Korea. They were made up of a combination of new pilots right out of jet training and the older combat veterans of World War II vintage. This combination of pilot types wrote and re-wrote the text books on jet warfare. Of the 40 jet aces that the war produced, the 4th Wing boasted 24 of them. They also were the dominating MiG killer outfit with the USAF.
The 51st Fighter Wing initially flew the F-80C in the Korean War, but in 1951, the 51st brought in high-scoring World War 2 ace Colonel Francis Gabreski to assume command when it converted from the F-80 over to the newly arrived F-86E. His recruits included his elite 4th Wing pilots, and by the end of the war, the 51st had two pilots who achieved the status of "Double Ace" as well as the highest scoring ace of the war, Joe McConnell. This book describes the 51st Wing's tenure with the Sabre that led to their high scoring sprees of 1953.
As the routed North Korean People's Army (NKPA) withdrew into the mountainous reaches of their country and the People's Republic of China (PRC) funneled in its massive infantry formations in preparation for a momentous counter-offensive in the last months of 1950, both lacked adequate air power to challenge US and UN air supremacy over both the battlefields and the logistics channels from China into North Korea. Reluctantly, Josef Stalin agreed to provide the requisite air cover, introducing the superior swept-wing MiG-15 to counter the American's straight-wing F-80 jets and to repel the United States Air Force (USAF) B-29 bomber formations that were interdicting the PRC's flow of troops and supplies into North Korea. This in turn prompted the USAF, against its conventional wisdom of retaining its first-line air-defence fighters to face Soviet air forces across the 'Iron Curtain' in Europe, to deploy its very best - the F-86A Sabre - to counter this threat. Thus began a two-and-a-half-year struggle in the skies over a corner of North Korea known as "MiG Alley."In this period, the unrelenting campaign for aerial superiority witnessed the introduction of successive models of these two revolutionary jets - the MiG-15bis, the F-86E, and eventually the F-86F - into combat. It also saw the transition of operational leadership on the communist side from the Soviet "volunteers" to the newly formed Chinese PLAAF air divisions, and witnessed the re-introduction of the NKPAF, with its "just trained" MiG-15 units, into the air-combat arena. This meticulously researched study not only provides technical descriptions of the two types and their improved variants, complete with a "fighter pilot's assessment" of these aircraft, but also chronicles the entire scope of their aerial duel in "MiG Alley" by employing the recollections of the surviving combatants - including Russian, Chinese, and North Korean pilots - who participated.
The first VF-2 was a prewar unit that had been dubbed the 'hottest outfit afloat' due to the skill of their non-commissioned pilots. This first unit only saw combat at the Battle of the Coral Sea, but VF-2 pilots flying Grumman F4F Wildcats were able to rack up 17 claims there during the bitter 48-hour period of fighting. The second 'Fighting Two' was armed with the new Grumman F6F-3 Hellcat fighter. Arriving in Hawaii in October 1943, the squadron so impressed Cdr Edward H 'Butch' O'Hare, the Medal of Honor winning first US Navy ace of World War 2, that he requested the squadron replace VF-6 in his Carrier Air Group 6 aboard USS Enterprise. No other US Navy unit created as many aces as VF-2, whose pilots went into action over the Carolines, Marianas, Guam, Iwo Jima and the Battle of the Philippines Sea. Using exquisite photographs and first-hand accounts from the elite fliers themselves, this volume tells the story of the ace pilots who comprised the original VF-2 and the second.
From Coral Sea to Midway to Guadalcanal and Santa Cruz, these fighters battled for air supremacy over the Pacific in World War II. The Grumman F4F Wildcat and the Mitsubishi A6M Zero-sen were contemporaries, although designed to very different requirements. Ruggedly built so as to survive the rigors of carrier operations, the Wildcat was the best carrier fighter the US Navy had available when the USA entered World War II, and it remained the principal fighter for the US Navy and the US Marine Corps until the more capable F6F Hellcat and F4U Corsair entered service in 1942-43. Designed to meet a seemingly impossible requirement from the Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN) for an aeroplane with a speed greater than 300mph, exceptional maneuverability, long range, and an impressive armament - for the time - of two 7.7mm machine guns and two 20mm cannon, the Zero-sen could out-perform any Allied fighter in 1941-42.In one-on-one combat the Zero-sen was clearly superior to the rugged Grumman F4F Wildcat in speed, climb, maneuverability, and service ceiling. The Wildcat, in turn, had better firepower and structural strength but was some 2,600lb heavier than its Japanese opponent, with only 250 additional horsepower; even so, the Wildcat pilots had no alternative but to take on their more capable Japanese opponents until superior American aircraft could be put into production. The battles between the Wildcat and the Zero-sen during 1942 represent a classic duel in which pilots flying a nominally inferior fighter successfully developed air combat tactics that negated the strengths of their opponent.
The definitive account of F-4 Corsair Units deployed in the Korean War (1950-1953), this book tells the story of the 26 US Navy Squadrons, most of which were carrier based, and the 6 Marine Corps F-4 squadrons that flew combat missions against the North Koreans.Drawing from a vast repository of personal interviews with F-4 pilots, the author paints a harrowing picture of the deadly combat of this often forgotten air war. Included in this volume is the story of Lt Guy Bordelon, the US Navy's sole ace of the Korean War, who flew an F4U-5N night-fighter against the night raiders sent up by the Korean Air force. Backing up the text is a vast number of previously unpublished private photographs that bring the stories of these pilots to life. Finally the book contains extensive appendices that detail every unit deployment by carrier, air group, Corsair model and tail code. Also included is a detailed list noting every Corsair lost in the war, with tail number, pilot, date of loss and the unit.
After Pearl Harbor, the US Navy's VF-9 carrier fighter group formed, seeing action in North Africa, The Marshalls, Kwajelein, Truk, the Marianas Turkey Shoot and on to Tokyo and Okinawa.VF-9 was activated in March 1942 as part of Carrier Air Group (CAG) 9, one of the many air groups the US Navy was hurriedly forming in the aftermath of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Equipped with Grumman F4F Wildcats, VF-9 first saw combat during the Allied invasion of North Africa in November 1942, where the squadron engaged Vichy French fighters over Morocco. Returning to the United States, VF-9 became one of the first squadrons to receive the Grumman F6F Hellcat and to deploy on the USS Essex, the first of its class of fleet carriers that would form the backbone of the US Navy's Fast Carrier Task Force. VF-9, the Hellcat, and the Essex all entered combat in the fall of 1943. In the hands of the squadron's pilots, and with other Navy fighter squadrons, the Hellcat proved superior to the Imperial Japanese Navy's A6M Zero, which had heretofore been the world's premier carrier fighter plane. During its second combat tour, beginning in August 1943, VF-9 participated in the initial stages of the US Navy's successful island-hopping campaign across the Pacific. Flying strikes against Marcus Island, Wake Island, Rabaul, the invasions of Tarawa and Kwajalein, and the attack on Truk, VF-9 helped prove the Hellcat as a fighter and supported CAG-9 in its relentless attacks on Japanese forces, helping to validate the concept of the multi-carrier task force and the new carrier doctrine that led to the US Navy's complete defeat of the Imperial Japanese Navy. During its second combat tour VF-9 claimed 120 Japanese aircraft and produced the first Hellcat ace in Lt(jg) Hamilton McWhorter and nine additional aces. VF-9 began its third combat tour in February 1945 aboard the USS Lexington, shifting to the USS Yorktown a month later. The squadron participated in the February strikes against Tokyo and played a significant role in the Okinawa Campaign from March to June 1945. Now equipped with the F6F-5 Hellcat, the squadron claimed 130 Japanese aircraft shot down. Ten VF-9 pilots became aces during the campaign, most notably Lt Eugene Valencia, who ended the war as the second highest scoring Hellcat ace and tied with Lt Cecil Harris as the US Navy's second highest scoring ace overall with 23 victories. Valencia's division became famous as the most successful fighter team in the US Navy during World War 2, claiming a combined total of 43 Japanese aircraft. In addition VF-9 had one of the US Navy's few nightfighter aces in Lt(jg) John Orth, who flew an F6F-5N Hellcat.
In the key Pacific War battles of the Marianas Turkey Shoot, Leyte Gulf, and in and around Japan itself (from late 1943 through to VJ-Day) the principal fighters involved were the F6F Hellcat and the A6M5/7 Zero-sen. The former was Grumman's successor to the pugnacious Wildcat, and its creation was shaped by the combat experiences of Naval Aviators flying the F4F against the A6M2/3 Zero-sen from late 1941. Blooded in combat against the Japanese in August 1943, the Hellcat went on to serve as the principal US Navy fighter on board carrier decks until war's end. Despite its lethality in the air when ranged against the best Japanese fighters, the Hellcat still retained docile handling qualities around the carrier deck. Naval Aviators flying the Hellcat claimed in excess of 5,000 kills in the Pacific, and more than 300 pilots achieved ace status on the type. The majority of these victories took the form of A6M5 Zero-sens, the most-produced model of the final Mitsubishi fighter - some 6000 were built from late 1943 through to war's end. The A6M5 reached front-line units just as the Hellcat was making its combat debut, the new version of the Zero-sen being based on the previous A6M3 model but with modified flaps and ailerons and thickened wing skinning. It was only meant to be an interim design pending the arrival of the A7M Reppu and J2M Raiden. However, terminal development problems with the former and technical issues with the latter meant that the A6M5, and re-engined limited run A6M7 (150 built), had to hold the line through to September 1945. By now badly outclassed by the Hellcat, literally thousands of Zero-sens fell victim to US Navy fighter squadrons in the final years of the war.
In 1948 the USAF, Marine Corps and US Navy were concentrating on converting over to an all-jet force. When the Korean War started in June 1950, the USAF had built up a sizable jet force in the Far East, while the US Navy was in the early stages of getting F9F Panthers operational as replacements for its piston-engined F8F Bearcats. At about this time, the Marine Corps had also begun using the Panthers in limited numbers. Operating from aircraft carriers off the Korean coast, F9Fs helped stop the North Korean invasion within two weeks of the communists crossing the 38th Parallel. The Panthers, escorting carrier-based AD Skyraiders and F4U Corsairs, penetrated as far north as Pyongyang, where they bombed and strafed targets that the North Koreans thought were out of range. The Panthers also took the battle all the way to the Yalu River, long before the MiG-15s became a threat. The F9F's basic tasking was aerial supremacy and combat air patrols, but they also excelled in bombing and strafing attacks. The Marine Corps, with its two Panther squadrons, was also involved in close air support and interdiction near the frontlines. There were a total of 32 Panther squadron deployments during the war, along with several special detachments that operated the F9F-2/5P unarmed photo-reconnaissance versions.
From the inside flap An allegorical story of World War I set in the trenches in France and dealing ostensibly with a mutiny in a French regiment.
This novel won both the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award in 1955. An allegorical story of World War I, set in the trenches in France and dealing ostensibly with a mutiny in a French regiment, it was originally considered a sharp departure for Faulkner. Recently it has come to be recognized as one of his major works and an essential part of the Faulkner oeuvre. Faulkner himself fought in the war, and his descriptions of it "rise to magnificence," according to The New York Times, and include, in Malcolm Cowley's words, "some of the most powerful scenes he ever conceived." From the Paperback edition.
Military historian John Keegan's groundbreaking analysis of combat and warfareThe Face of Battle is military history from the battlefield: a look at the direct experience of individuals at the "point of maximum danger." Without the myth-making elements of rhetoric and xenophobia, and breaking away from the stylized format of battle descriptions, John Keegan has written what is probably the definitive model for military historians. And in his scrupulous reassessment of three battles representative of three different time periods, he manages to convey what the experience of combat meant for the participants, whether they were facing the arrow cloud at the battle of Agincourt, the musket balls at Waterloo, or the steel rain of the Somme."The best military historian of our generation." -Tom Clancy
Military historian John Keegan's groundbreaking analysis of combat and warfare The Face of Battle is military history from the battlefield: a look at the direct experience of individuals at the "point of maximum danger. " Without the myth-making elements of rhetoric and xenophobia, and breaking away from the stylized format of battle descriptions, John Keegan has written what is probably the definitive model for military historians. And in his scrupulous reassessment of three battles representative of three different time periods, he manages to convey what the experience of combat meant for the participants, whether they were facing the arrow cloud at the battle of Agincourt, the musket balls at Waterloo, or the steel rain of the Somme. "The best military historian of our generation. " -Tom Clancy .
This book is the story of Peter Maguire's effort to learn how Cambodia's "culture of impunity" developed, why it persists, and the failures of the "international community" to confront the Cambodian genocide. Written from a personal and historical perspective, Facing Death in Cambodia recounts Maguire's growing anguish over the gap between theories of universal justice and political realities. Maguire documents the atrocities and the aftermath through personal interviews with victims and perpetrators, discussions with international officials, journalistic accounts, and government sources.
Facing the Lion is the autobiographical account of a young girl's faith and courage. In the years immediately preceding World War II, Simone Arnold is a young girl who delights in life--her doting parents, her loving aunts and uncles, and her grandparents at their mountain farm in the Alsace-Lorraine region of France. As Simone grows into her preteen years, her parents turn from the Catholic Church and become devout Jehovah's Witnesses. Simone, too, embraces the faith. The Nazi party (the "Lion") takes over Alsace-Lorraine, and Simone's schools become Nazi propaganda machines. Simone refuses to accept the Nazi party as being above God. Her simple acts of defiance lead her to be persecuted by the school staff and local officials, and ignored by friends. With her father already taken away to a German concentration camp, Simone is wrested away from her mother and sent to a reform school to be "reeducated." There, Simone learns that her mother has also been put in a camp. Simone remains in the harsh reform school until the end of the war. She emerges feeling detached from life, but the faith that sustains her through her ordeals helps her rebuild her world. Facing the Lion provides an interesting and detailed view of ordinary country and town life in the pre-war years and during Hitler's regime. This inspiring story of a young girl standing up for her beliefs in the face of society's overwhelming pressure to conform is a potent reminder of the power of remaining true to one's beliefs. "...a shining example for the power of the spirit to triumph over evil....an eloquent firsthand account of a little girl's struggle to keep her faith in a world which had gone mad." --Ernst Rodin, author, War & Mayhem: Reflections of a Viennese Physician
Fahim Fazli is a man of two worlds: Afghanistan, the country of his birth, and America, the nation he adopted and learned to love. He's also a man who escaped oppression, found his dream profession, and then paid it forward by returning to Afghanistan as an interpreter with the US. Marines. When Fahim speaks, the story he tells is harrowing, fascinating, and inspiring. Born and raised in Kabul, Fahim saw his country and family torn apart by revolution and civil war. Dodging Afghan authorities and informers with his father and brother, Fahim made his way across the border to Pakistan and then to America. After reuniting with his mother, sisters, and one brother, he moved to California with dreams of an acting career. After fifteen turbulent years that included two unsuccessful arranged marriages to Afghan brides, he finally qualified for membership in the Screen Actors Guild--and found true American love. Though Fahim's California life was happy and rewarding, he kept thinking about the battlefields of Afghanistan. Haunted by a desire to serve his adopted country, he became a combat linguist. While other interpreters opted for safe assignments, Fahim chose one of the most dangerous: working with the Leathernecks in embattled Helmand Province, where his outgoing personality and deep cultural understanding made him a favorite of both marines and local Afghans--and a pariah to the Taliban, who put a price on his head. Fahim Speaks is an inspiring story of perseverance and patriotism--and of the special love that one man developed for his adopted country.
THE WORLD'S FOREMOST CRITIC OF U.S. FOREIGN POLICY EXPOSES THE HOLLOW PROMISES OF DEMOCRACY IN U-S. ACTIONS ABRoAD -AND AT HOME THE UNITED STATES HAS REPEATEDLY asserted its right to intervene militarily against "failed states" around the globe. In this muchanticipated follow-up to his international bestseller Hegemony or Survival, Noam Chomsky turns the tables, showing how the United States itself shares features with other failed states and therefore is increasingly a danger to its own people and the world. Failed states, Chomsky writes, are those that are unable or unwilling "to protect their citizens from violence and perhaps even destruction" and "regard themselves as beyond the reach of domestic or international law." Though they may have democratic forms, Chomsky notes, failed states suffer from a serious "democratic deficit" that deprives their democratic institutions of real substance. Exploring the latest developments in U.S. foreign and domestic policy, Chomsky reveals Washington's plans to further militarize the planet greatly increasing the risks of nuclear war; assesses the dangerous consequences of the occupation of Iraq, which has fueled global outrage at the United States; documents Washington's self-exemption from international norms, including the UN Charter and the Geneva Conventions, the foundations of contemporary international law, and the Kyoto Protocol; and examines how the U.S. electoral system is designed to eliminate genuine political alternatives, impeding any meaningful democracy.
Returning Vietnam veterans had every reason to expect that the government would take care of their readjustment needs in the same way it had done for veterans of both World War II and Korea. But the Vietnam generation soon discovered that their G.I. Bills fell well short of what many of them believed they had earned. Mark Boulton's groundbreaking study provides the first analysis of the legislative debates surrounding the education benefits offered under the Vietnam-era G.I. Bills. Specifically, the book explores why legislators from both ends of the political spectrum failed to provide Vietnam veterans the same generous compensation offered to veterans of previous wars. Failing Our Veterans should be essential reading to scholars of the Vietnam War, political history, or of social policy. Contemporary lawmakers should heed its historical lessons on how we ought to treat our returning veterans. Indeed, veterans wishing to fully understand their own homecoming experience will find great interest in the book's conclusions.
The Fairbairn-Sykes Commando dagger has become iconic as the most widely recognized fighting knife in the world. The origins of the dagger can be traced to Shanghai in the 1930s where W. E. Fairbairn and US Marine officers including Sam Yeaton carried out experiments in developing what they considered the perfect knife for close combat. When Fairbairn and Sykes became instructors for the Commandos, they refined the design which would evolve into the classic Fairbairn-Sykes dagger. The dagger was first used during early Commando raids into occupied Europe but saw action in every theatre of World War II (1939-1945). US Rangers and Marines who had trained with the Commandos took their Fairbairn-Sykes daggers home which also influenced the development of American Special Forces daggers. The Fairbairn-Sykes remained in use with many units after the war, and has become a symbol of commando and special forces units throughout the world.From the Trade Paperback edition.
The Fairbairn-Sykes Commando dagger has become iconic as the most widely recognized fighting knife in the world. The origins of the dagger can be traced to Shanghai in the 1930s where W. E. Fairbairn and US Marine officers including Sam Yeaton carried out experiments in developing what they considered the perfect knife for close combat. When Fairbairn and Sykes became instructors for the Commandos, they refined the design which would evolve into the classic Fairbairn-Sykes dagger. The dagger was first used during early Commando raids into occupied Europe but saw action in every theatre of World War II. US Rangers and Marines who had trained with the Commandos took their Fairbairn-Sykes daggers home which also influenced the development of American Special Forces daggers. The Fairbairn-Sykes remained in use with many units after the war, and has become a symbol of commando and special forces units throughout the world.
War-Worn Faith You want the flare of your faith to burn as intensely as a fire on the battlefield. That means digging into God's truth regardless of the chaos raging around you. These devotions are written by a man who had considered war something that someone else always did, and was then himself deployed to Iraq as a company commander. From the frontlines of the blackest days and in the face of inexplicable suffering, you'll discover the heart of the question, "Why, God?" and its often unsettling answer. Because in war, as in contemporary America , reality involves struggle, trial, and triumph. Let God meet you in the midst of life's nonsense to find the peace that is a crucial part of His impeccable plan. Why, God? War screams the same questions whispered in everyday life. The battlefield explodes with the same tenacity of emotions that wretch our souls. Smoke fills the air just as doubt clouds our minds. Are you on the frontlines of war overseas? Or perhaps your battle is personal, deep within. These devotions, penned by Captain Chris Plekenpol while on the battlefield in Iraq, expose the depths of inexplicable suffering as well as the heights of incredible victory in God. Through every adversity and in any circumstance, you will find a still voice reminding you of God's sovereignty...in war and peace. "Faith forged in the crucible of combat! Chris Plekenpol is a warrior and he has compiled a great guide for victory in the battles we all face." Oliver L. North Host of "War Stories" on Fox News and author of The Assassins "There is no theory here. Just the battle-tested insights of a soldier who has learned to trust his heavenly Father in the valley of the shadow of death. You are going to love this book." Andy Stanley Pastor, North Point Community Church "Amazing encouragement from the heart of the battle!" Louie Giglio Passion Conferences Story Behind the Book"I began writing devotionals as both a preparation for seminary and as a ministry tool during my service in Korea . At first, I sent them only to a few people. Then, as I wrote more frequently, I received e-mails requesting my devotions. I continued writing during my deployment to Iraq , tackling such issues as life in combat as well as the triumph of God in the battle. My purpose in writing this book is to further God's work in my life by ministering to others through my experience in the heart of the battle." --Chris PlekenpolFrom the Trade Paperback edition.
John McCain is one of the most admired leaders in the United States government, but his deeply felt memoir of family and war is not a political one and ends before his election to Congress. With candor and ennobling power, McCain tells a story that, in the words of Newsweek, "makes the other presidential candidates look like pygmies." John McCain learned about life and honor from his grandfather and father, both four-star admirals in the U.S. Navy. This is a memoir about their lives, their heroism, and the ways that sons are shaped and enriched by their fathers. John McCain's grandfather was a gaunt, hawk-faced man known as Slew by his fellow officers and, affectionately, as Popeye by the sailors who served under him. McCain Sr. played the horses, drank bourbon and water, and rolled his own cigarettes with one hand. More significant, he was one of the navy's greatest commanders, and led the strongest aircraft carrier force of the Third Fleet in key battles during World War II. John McCain's father followed a similar path, equally distinguished by heroic service in the navy, as a submarine commander during World War II. McCain Jr. was a slightly built man, but like his father, he earned the respect and affection of his men. He, too, rose to the rank of four-star admiral, making the McCains the first family in American history to achieve that distinction. McCain Jr.'s final assignment was as commander of all U.S. forces in the Pacific during the Vietnam War. It was in the Vietnam War that John McCain III faced the most difficult challenge of his life. A naval aviator, he was shot down over Hanoi in 1967 and seriously injured. When Vietnamese military officers realized he was the son of a top commander, they offered McCain early release in an effort to embarrass the United States. Acting from a sense of honor taught him by his father and the U.S. Naval Academy, McCain refused the offer. He was tortured, held in solitary confinement, and imprisoned for five and a half years. Faith of My Fathers is about what McCain learned from his grandfather and father, and how their example enabled him to survive those hard years. It is a story of three imperfect men who faced adversity and emerged with their honor intact. Ultimately, Faith of My Fathers shows us, with great feeling and appreciation, what fathers give to their sons, and what endures.From the Hardcover edition.