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Comment: Book is used in good condition. Cover shows use and shelf wear. Ex-library book with typical markings and labels. Text is clean of any markings, writing, or highlighting. Mylar protective dust jacket cover also included.
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Men Who Killed the Luftwaffe: The U.S. Army Air Forces Against Germany in World War II Hardcover – October 15, 2010

4.6 out of 5 stars 94 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

Winner of the San Diego Book Award for Military & Politics

Bronze medalist--Military Writers Society of America

An excellent overview of the U.S. Army Air Forces' war against Nazi Germany.  Both historians and enthusiasts will find something of interest in this well-researched history.
--Barrett Tillman, Author of "Whirlwind: The Air War Against Japan"

As always, air combat veteran Jay Stout creates a spellbinding narrative by asking, and getting answers to, important and illuminating questions no other author on the topic has ever even thought of. --Eric Hammel, author of "The Road to Big Week"

"A colossal undertaking that delivers brilliantly. This work rises above the fray and is reminiscent of Ambrose's Citizen Soldiers." --Michael Franzak, author of "A Nightmare's Prayer: A Marine Harrier Pilot's War in Afghanistan"

A marvelously written work!  Stout...offers stirring firsthand accounts of the strategies and doctrines that won the air war over Europe.  --Col Walter J. Boyne, (Ret.), USAF, Former director of the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum


"As spell binding as it is authoritative -- never before has there been such a detailed work on the USAAF." (Mick Evans HyperScale 2011-07-12)

From the Inside Flap

When World War II began, the U.S. Army Air Corps numbered only 45,000 men and a few thousand aircraft--hardly enough to defend the United States, let alone defeat Germany's Luftwaffe, the world's most formidable air force. Yet by the war's end, the Luftwaffe had been crushed, and the U.S. Army Air Forces, successor to the Air Corps, had delivered the decisive blows. The Men Who Killed the Luftwaffe tells the story of that striking transformation--one of the marvels of modern warfare--while simultaneously thrusting readers into whirling, heart-pounding accounts of aerial combat.

The Allies couldn't defeat Hitler's Third Reich without destroying its industry and taking its territory, but before they could do either, they had to neutralize the Luftwaffe, whose state-of-the-art aircraft and battle-seasoned pilots stood ready to batter any attackers. Great Britain's Royal Air Force was only barely holding the line, and the might of the United States was needed to turn the tide.

Almost from scratch, the United States built an air force of more than two million men. Thanks to the visionary leadership of Henry "Hap" Arnold, Carl "Tooey" Spaatz, Ira Eaker, James Doolittle, and others, the USAAF assembled a well-trained and superbly equipped force unlike any ever fielded. And thanks to the brave Americans who crewed, maintained, and supported the aircraft, the USAAF annihilated the Luftwaffe as it pounded targets deep inside Germany and elsewhere.

A stirring tribute to these men as well as an engaging work of history, The Men Who Killed the Luftwaffe vividly describes World War II in the skies above Europe. At the same time, it captures the personalities of the men who won it, whether on the ground or in the sky.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 432 pages
  • Publisher: Stackpole Books; 1st edition (October 15, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0811706591
  • ISBN-13: 978-0811706599
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 1.6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (94 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #594,996 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
There has been a colossal stack of material written about the air war over Western Europe during WW II. This will be one of the last volumes to include original interviews with USAAF veterans who took on the Luftwaffe over its own territory and won. One of the best features of this book is that Stout draws on his own experience as a fighter pilot to illuminate how crucial but often neglected aspects of the American war effort - training in particular - played a critical role in creating and sustaining air superiority over "Fortress Europe" in 1944-45. Another excellent aspect is Stout's ability to trace the consequences of strategic decisions to operational effects and to illustrate the connections with compelling tactical examples drawn from the memories of the dwindling number of surviving participants. The Men Who Killed the Luftwaffe is accessible for the casual reader with a fresh perspective and new material of interest to even the most widely-read WW II expert. Highly recommended!
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Format: Hardcover
Having read over 300 books on the air war in WW II, I purchased this book with some reservations. In the past I have read several books that looked great on the cover (tail end Charlie to be a recent example), that were good books, but ultimately spent too much time on the RAF and the night operations of Sir Harris. This book takes an entirely different and refreshing approach focusing solely on the work of the men of the US ARMY Air Corps. In the first chapter of the book, the author sets the tones of the story by describing how he came up with the title of the book and why it fits the American fighting from the air in Europe. This book is very well written, insightful both of the political battles of the Army Air Corps, and of the many (first hand experiences of the) air battles themselves. The narrative is captivating and most certainly does justice to those for whom the story is written.
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Format: Hardcover
Jay Stout has written a very thorough and engaging account of the US Army Air Force (USAAF) war against Germany. His basic thesis is that the USAAF defeated the Luftwaffe; only they had the plans, manpower, and equipment necessary to beat the Luftwaffe. The RAF, in his view, did not and could not secure air superiority through the strategy the British pursued, and the Soviets lacked a strategic air force. Stout ably describes the course and outcome of the air war, from the buildup before the war, to the early efforts over Africa and Italy, to the bitter campaign over Germany in 1943, to the final and decisive campaigns of 1944-45. He also describes the critical (but often neglected) issues of pilot, gunner and aircrew training, as the ability of the USAAF to train large numbers of skilled crews enabled it to overwhelm the Luftwaffe.

Stout provides a good mix between first-hand accounts, description of the strategic and operational context of the war, and analysis of the capabilities of different aircraft. This is not a pure "I was there" type book, but neither is it a dry doctrinal or technical discussion. He has corresponded with many World War II veterans who, to my knowledge, have never before related their combat experiences, and thus the first-hand accounts seem very "fresh" to someone who has read a lot of air combat histories as I have. Stout does not idolize the men of the USAAF or present them as a set of "Greatest Generation" cliches. Rather, he sees them for who they were -- normal Americans doing what needed to be done, some doing their jobs well, and others doing their jobs poorly.

Stout has a very readable and engaging style. In addition, he is a Marine aviator and fighter pilot himself. His accounts of air combat therefore bring a "real world" perspective to bear, but the discussions of strategy and tactics are still accessible to the general reader.

Anyone interested in air combat in World War II should read this book.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
From the standpoint of a very senior citizen--me--who was a teenager during WWII, this book achieves two desirable ends: entertainment and education. In a highly readable way, it reveals to us what was happening to the men who were far away fighting the air war while we at home got only glimpses of their triumphs and tragedies through the daily radio newscasts of H.V. Kaltenborn, Lowell Thomas, and Edward R. Murrow. There were also ten-minute newsreels at the movies, and those were the major sources of our scant knowledge of the distant war.

Now, through this incredibly well-researched book, Jay Stout has opened a door and invited all ages in to see and feel the danger, dedication and fear these men lived with as they willingly did their jobs to keep the fighting and destruction on the other side of the Atlantic. Now I know something of what my cousin must have felt when he manhandled a mammoth B-24 through layers of flak and German fighters to bomb Ploesti oil refineries. Or what another cousin who was almost blind in one eye (but who had memorized eye charts!) accomplished by becoming a crew chief and doggedly keeping the planes flying.

Of course we've all seen dozens of movies about the war, and they help us understand much, but Jay Stout's book is the real McCoy. He brings history to life and personalizes it by interviewing dozens of men of my generation whose war-time experiences and emotions are etched in their memories. We appreciate this because the men who returned to us so long ago very seldom talked about what they had done and seen and we were left with what we had gleaned from the six o'clock radio news and the ten-minute newsreels.
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