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Air War Over the Falklands

Air War Over the Falklands Book Review

By David L. Veres

Date of Review May 2012 Title Air War Over the Falklands
Author Neil Robinson Publisher AIRfile
Published 2012 ISBN 978-0956980236
Format 84 pages, softbound MSRP (Euro) €18.50

Review

Ignore the misspelled title.  This book superbly and conveniently details the nasty, brutish, and short Falklands aerial campaign.

Commemorating the war’s 30th Anniversary, Air War over the Falklands packs dozens of subjects and schemes into 84 pithy pages – fully 70 of which sport profile and 4-view artwork.

Despite its brevity, the 1982 conflict spawned an amazing array of camouflage & markings schemes – many field-applied.  And respected author Neil Robinson portrays at least one example of every aircraft in British and Argentine combat service:

  • BAe Sea Harrier FRS.1
  • BAe Harrier GR.3
  • McDonnell Douglas Phantom FGR.2
  • Avro Vulcan B.2
  • Handley Page Victor K.2
  • BAe Nimrod MR.1/MR.2P
  • Boeing-Vertol Chinook HC.2
  • Lockheed Hercules C.1/C.1P/C.1K
  • Westland Scout AH.1
  • Westland Lynx HAS.2
  • Westland Wasp HAS.1
  • Westland Scout AH.1
  • Westland Wessex HU.5/HAS.3/HC.2
  • Westland Sea King HAR.3/HAS.5/HC.4/HAS.2A
  • Westland Gazelle AH.1
  • Dassault Mirage IIIEA
  • Israeli Aircraft Industries Dagger
  • Douglas A-4B/A-4C Skyhawk
  • IA.58 Pucara
  • English Electric Canberra B.62/T.64
  • Lockheed C-130E/C-130H/KC-130H Hercules
  • Fokker F-27-600 Friendship 
  • Douglas A-4Q Skyhawk
  • Dassault Super Etendard
  • Beech T-34C Turbo Mentor
  • Aermacchi MB.339A
  • Grumman S-2E Tracker
  • Learjet 35A
  • Bell UH-1H Iroquois
  • Boeng-Vertol CH-47C Chinook
  • Aerospatiale SA.330L Puma
  • Agusta A.109A Hirundo
  • Lockheed SP-2H Neptune
  • Sikorsky SH-3D Sea King
  • Westland Lynx Mk 32
  • Boeing 707-372C
  • Short Skyvan SC7-3M-400
  • North American F-86F-30 Sabre

Text includes a conflict overview with chronology followed, successively, by coverage of participating British and Argentine aircraft assets.  Captions detail warplane colors, codes, serials, units, and service.

Coverage omits a couple cool curiosities.  Argentina briefly pondered deploying IV Brigada Aérea F-86F-30’s to Port Stanley – hence, AIRFILE’s profile of Sabre C-120.  Had that occurred, the world’s last combat Sabres might have worn Argentine markings.  And Prefectura Naval Skyvan PA-54 wears the field-applied scheme developed for “Operation Soberanía” – Argentina’s aborted 1978 invasion of Chile during the Beagle Channel crisis.

Color reproduction drifts in spots.  The cover’s Argentine roundel lacks, for instance, its distinctive azure hue.  And the green of CANA SP-2H Neptune 2-P-112 appears too light.

Check photos, too.  Some gremlins haunt Peter Scott’s otherwise excellent I.A.58 profiles.  Pucarás A-533 and A-528, for instance, wore different camouflage schemes.  And that “broad band” across A-536’s fin actually matched the pastel, upper-surface warpaint of A-511, -514, -522, -531, -532, and -533 – not “pale yellow”.

Those Pucará remarks prompt full disclosure!  I just noted my name among the book’s “Acknowledgments”.  This reflects my supply of several wartime I.A.58 shots to author Robinson for May 2007’s Model Aircraft Monthly.  No good deed evidently goes unpunished!

Seriously, Pucará nitpicks aside, almost every page of Air War over the Falklands roused my modeling muse.  “Falklands” or Malvinas”, this handy tome should remain a terrific springboard for further study, project planning, “theme” builds, and group activities.

Recommended.

My sincere thanks to AIRfile Publications for this review sample!

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