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Russia's Military Aircraft in the 21st Century

Russia's Military Aircraft in the 21st Century Book Review

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review June 2006 Title Russia's Military Aircraft in the 21st Century
Author Yefim Gordon Publisher Midland Publications
Published 2006 ISBN 1-85780-224-1
Format 128 pages, softbound MSRP (USD) $36.95


I've become a fan of just about anything Yefim Gordon publishes these days as I have yet to be disappointed. This latest release is no exception - this is a look into the contemporary Russian Air Force and its current direction in terms of equipment. It still amazes me after the wall came down, just how much outstanding imagery and information there is available to the average aviation enthusiast! It wasn't that long ago that we were thrilled with grainy black and white photos!!

At any rate, in this latest title, the author walks through the various aircraft types either in service or about to enter service with the Russian Air Force. Many of these aircraft will look familiar as there hasn't been much money available to turn out new generations of combat aircraft as in the days of old, but look closer as many of these aircraft have had some significant improvements to carry them through the next generation of service.

Coverage of this title includes:

  • Introduction
  • Sukhoi's Programmes
  • Modernising the MiG-29
  • Yak-130: Russia's New Trainer
  • Upgrading the Strategic Aircraft
  • Militant Mils
  • Kamovs in Combat

As with the other titles in this series, the color photography is breathtaking, not only the airborne and flightline photography, but also the cockpits and other interesting details. If you're a Soviet and Russian Air Force historian/enthusiast, you'll be amazed at what you'll see. Thrust vectoring MiG-29s, updated Mi-24s, completely updated Su-24s, Su-25s, Su-27s, Su-34s, and more!

If you want to see what Russian tactical and strategic aviation will look like for the next decade, this is a title you won't want to miss!

My sincere thanks to Motorbooks International for this review copy!