Welcome to Cold War Gamer, a blog I am using to record my Cold War wargaming projects. These range from fictitious Cold War hot projects to historical conflicts that took place around the globe throughout the Cold War era, all modelled and gamed in 20mm. The blog includes links to various resources useful to the Cold War Gamer.

My current projects include: Central Front; British & Soviet. South African Border War; Angolans and South Africans. Soviet Afghan War; Soviets and Afghans

Wednesday 4 September 2013

Review - Book, Soviet Tactical Aviation

Given the title you'd not be surprised to hear that this is a bit of a bible on Soviet Tactical Aviation.  It provides extensive coverage of the topic from the early post war  period to the disolution of the Soviet Union.  It is lavishly illustrated through out with numerous colour aircraft profiles and detailed artwork on individual aircraft markings together with a Mass of pictures of the Birds in action.

It covers the story from a number of perspectives with a shifting focus in each of the chapters. The early chapters on:
  • The FA in the early post War Years
  • The 1950s - The Soviet Air Forces Golden Age
  • The Tactical Aviation of the 1960s/1980s
take a view on the evolution of the aircraft rather than the evolution of the doctrine and operation. The book does however have extensive chapters on:
  • The Korean War
  • Support provided to friendly Nations
  • The forward deployed forces in Eastern Europe and Mongolia
  • Afghanistan
  • The FA before the Demise of the USSR
In these areas of the book it provides fairly extensive organisational data with Tables listing the composition of the different air armies at different points in time and a dialouge around the change of aircraft types rather than the evolution of the organisations structure, although to some extent this can be deduced.  The Final two chapters and the chapter on the Korean War talk more to operations and training but again with an Air Centric viewpoint.

Now if you are interested in Air-land Battle, and want to include Air and Aviation in your Cold War Soviet and Warsaw pact armies or if your a dedicated Aeroplane nut this book is definitively for you. It is rammed solid with useful information that enables a reasonable picture of Force structure and equipment to be built up across the breadth of the operational space considered by the Soviet Union for the duration of the Cold War.  At times the written style is a little difficult to follow but for the shear volume of information and all the pretty pictures its worth the money and is excellent value at £22 which was the price when I checked it today, even better if you can find one second hand. If you game at battle group and above and want Air and Aviation support on the table, then you probably need to read this book or at least look at the pictures.

Soviet Tactical Aviation @ Amazon

Other Book Reviews:

A History of Soviet Airborne Forces 
Armies of NATO's Central Front
Red Thrust, Central Front
The Soviet Afghan War, How a Super Power Fought and Lost
Weapons and Tactics of the Soviet Army
Soviet Air Land Battle TacticsThe Military Balance
Encyclopaedia of the Modern British Army
The Soviet Conduct of Tactical Manoeuvre
First Clash
The Third World War
The British Army in Germany

The Cold War Bookstore contains links to over 60 Cold War titles covered in my book list