Red Eagles: Americas Secret MiGs

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It didn't appear to me that any effort went into making this a story that civilian aviation nerds like myself could enjoy. And that's a real shame, because the base subject matter is really interesting to me. You'll learn a lot, but most likely be bored doing it. Aug 15, Ted rated it liked it. While this book is interesting, the technical data could have been contained in a longish article.

On the other hand, it is easy to speed read your way through, skipping biographical and other details not essential to the technical content. Aug 28, Josh rated it really liked it. Great story, very well researched and told. An excellent blend of the technical details of flying and maintaining MiGs, the history of the squadron, and the characters that made it up.

CONSTANT PEG: Secret MiGs in the Desert

This book was very informational, once you got past all the USAF jargon and abbreviations. What not everyone knew, because this was highly classified until recently, was the Red Eagles and their role. Davies did a very good job documenting everything, including two tragic accidents, and how their 'mishap' rate was so much higher than an average USAF fighter squadron. In part because of th This book was very informational, once you got past all the USAF jargon and abbreviations.

In part because of the machines, Soviet aerospace engineering philosophy, and the fact this was a covert program. A good read. Jan 03, Juergen Nieveler rated it it was amazing. Fascinating look behind the scenes of the cold war USAF. Mar 01, Relstuart rated it liked it Shelves: aviation , history , military. Interesting book though it follows the history of a squadron with people coming and going. So it does not have the same cohesive storyline one usually has with a biography or something along those lines. It is interesting to think that we acquired a number of Russian fighter planes and were able to fly against them in training scenarios so that our fighter pilots were ready to go against them if we needed to.

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Also interesting that the people that flew in this secret program had better info on th Interesting book though it follows the history of a squadron with people coming and going. Also interesting that the people that flew in this secret program had better info on their abilities than some other agencies in the US giving the Air Force info on the MIG. Perhaps the saddest part of the story is at the end when you find the reason this squadron goes away is because of military cutbacks in funding.

Also, the books points out that it is unlikely that we have anything like this now for the same reason. That is a shame because flying against enemy air tech in training could certainly cut down on losses on our side and ensure we understand the capabilities our foes have. I guess America is just betting no one will go up against us with high tech fighters our Air Force would have to take out.

Event Information

Hope that works out. Jan 21, HBalikov rated it it was ok. Remember that thrill of reaching into a "grab bag" and anticipating the wonderful thing you would be extracting? There was some of that in Red Eagles, but not enough.

CONSTANT PEG: Secret MiGs in the Desert > National Museum of the United States Air Force™ > Display

Further, where was Davies' editor when this manuscript was submitted? The topic is interesting: Our government gets its hands on Russian fighter planes that are getting the best of American pilots in combat. A special group of top pilots uses those planes to train our own pilots on tactics that will give them the edge, while keeping Remember that thrill of reaching into a "grab bag" and anticipating the wonderful thing you would be extracting? A special group of top pilots uses those planes to train our own pilots on tactics that will give them the edge, while keeping the Russians from knowing that any of this is going on.

The downside: Much of the book is written in military speak complete with acronyms and jargon. Though nominally chronological, it cannot seem to maintain a narrative line. We get a constant jumble of: technical specifications; descriptions of air bases; anecdotes of combat; chronicles of administrative changes; anecdotes of plane maintenance details; individual biographical histories; Congressional funding issues; and most without tie-ins to the larger historical context. Too bad, because the secret is a very interesting chapter in military history.


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Some interesting info, but the way the author rather jerkily jumps from episode with no sense of any narrative nor any insights into this history -- just recitation of data and quotes -- left me feeling like I wasn't getting anything out of it, so I abandoned it about halfway through. Nov 01, Ken Prescott rated it it was amazing Shelves: military-history.

The author isn't afraid to criticize key players if he believes that they made bad decisions. A story of some of the crazy stuff we did during the cold war to keep up with the "Ivans" in air combat. Fairly interesting, but the author kept breaking up information into small anecdotes that weren't horribly well connected. Also, Yes, we get it. Fighter Pilots have egos, and do craaazy stuff. Jan 01, Joe rated it liked it.

He completed undergraduate pilot training in and served numerous tours in fighter operations. Manclark retired from active duty as a Colonel in and then served as a Member of the Senior Executive Service for sixteen years as the Director of Test and Evaluation, Headquarters U. Air Force, Washington, D. He was responsible for all policy, resources, and oversight of developmental and operational testing, and was the focal point for foreign materiel acquisition and exploitation. This is the 28th in a series of presentations sponsored by the Museum, in cooperation with Old Bust Head Brewing Company, featuring expert eyewitnesses to significant Cold War events and activities.

Presentations occur at the Brewery, followed by special access to the Museum next door with a tour for event participants. The Museum next door will be open for event participants, with staff providing a tour for those interested. Film shot from an SR is on exhibit; there are very few rolls of such film that are not still classified. Event seating at the brewery is limited, and prior presentations have sold out, so we suggest that you secure your tickets promptly at Eventbrite.

Red Eagles: America's Secret MiGs (General Aviation)

Call or email Jason Hall, cell , jason coldwar. Add to Calendar. View Map View Map. Find out more about how your privacy is protected. Nov A secret airfield was constructed on the Tonopah Test Range in remote Nevada. This site concealed two classified programs—Constant Peg operated MiGs out of the airfield by day and at night the airfield was home to pilot training for the secret F Nighthawk stealth fighter.

The Assets. These tests provided the first complete technical breakdowns of MiG and MiG aircraft. The Red Eagles retired the aging MiGs in due to obsolescence and safety concerns. The Bandits: Red Eagle Pilots. Red Eagles pilots eagerly improved the level of instruction and scoured classified sources to improve their proficiency with the MiGs.

MiG Exposures.

Red Eagles

Due to the secrecy surrounding the Constant Peg program, the true nature of this specialized training was often kept from prospective students until the last minute. Many aircrew members were stunned when they spied their first Red Eagles MiG approaching during their initial flight training missions. The second exposure demonstrated basic flight maneuvers and gave the student pilot practice in one-vs-one defensive and offensive maneuvers.