As ever, the author provides a sublimely distilled and perfectly readable account of a grueling period of history.
A fascinating inside story of what it was like for pilots over south east Asia.
An outstanding overview of the Air Force's war in Vietnam…This is combat history in the words of the aviators themselves… and shaped by the author's detailed archival research, oral history interviews, and a commanding knowledge of the available literature… [A] riveting account that constitutes at once both an outstanding history and a tribute to the airmen who flew across Southeast Asia more than a half-century ago.
Dr Richard P Hallion, former Historian of the US Air Force and author of 'Rolling Thunder 1965-68: Johnson's Air War Over Vietnam'
In Going Downtown Thomas McKelvey Cleaver provides a rare combination, a macro-micro view of the war in the air. In setting the context of Southeast Asian air operations, the author adroitly combines Vietnam history with some heart-pounding combat episodes.
Barrett Tillman, author of 'Dragon's Jaw: An Epic Story of Courage and Tenacity in Vietnam'
There are many “I was there” books telling the USAF story in Vietnam; but Going Downtown: The U.S. Air Force in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia 1961–75 by Thomas McKelvey Cleaver paints a much broader picture of that air war. In this extensively researched and well written book, Cleaver gives you the action from the cockpits of both the North Vietnamese MiGs as well as the American jets. This book gives you the perspective of the decision makers in Washington, the generals in theater, and the pilots and crews in the cockpits. If you want to get a true understanding of USAF operations up North Going Downtown is for you.
Thomas E. Rodgers, Lt.Col., USAF (ret.)
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