Download Claire Chennault: Flying Tiger (Famous Flyers) by Earle Rice PDF

By Earle Rice

Profiles Claire Lee Chennault who, after retiring from the U.S. military Air Corps, volunteered as an consultant to Chiang Kai-Shek and led either chinese language and American air troops opposed to Japan in the course of global conflict II.

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Chiang wanted him to help procure planes and pilots in the United States. The man from Waterproof, Louisiana, responded with pessimism. S. S. attempts to take sides in China’s war with Japan. But Chiang would not be deterred. “You must go to the United States immediately,” he said. “Work out the plans for whatever you think you need. q 11/21/02 1:38 PM Page 46 46 CLAIRE CHENNAULT Chennault left at once for the United States. S. Army Air Corps, and Rear Admiral John H. Towers, at the navy’s Bureau of Aeronautics.

We opened fire, and the bombers seemed to fall to pieces,” said vice squadron leader Bob Neale, summarizing the action later. “I saw pieces of engine cowling fall off into space. Glass from the gun turrets flew in all directions. Engines smoked and caught fire. Tails just crumpled and fell off. ” When the melee ended, the Flying Tigers had shot down six bombers. Four escaped. Ed Rector, of the Panda Bears, caught up in the excitement of his first sky battle, chased one of the bombers until his P-40 ran out of gas.

Chennault was forced to agree to the mercenaries. ” Most could not pass muster as disciplined military pilots. Many of the “mercs” established Hankow’s Dump Street — a garish nightclub district replete with dance-hall girls, cheap booze, dope dealers, and spies — as their unofficial headquarters. Their penchant for drinking and barroom bragging cost them all their aircraft when Japanese spies overheard their boasts about an attack on Tsinan planned for the following day. At sunset that evening, Japanese bombers appeared over the Chinese airfield and blew apart every Vultee.

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