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In the Skies of Nomonhan: Japan Versus Russia May-September 1939

Discussion in 'Book Reviews' started by ColHessler, Apr 3, 2018.

  1. ColHessler

    ColHessler Member

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    Author: Col. Prof. Dimitar Nedialkov, PhD
    Publisher: Crecy Publisher Unlimited
    Length: 215 pages including index

    Nedialkov is a Bulgarian pilot and scholar, who delves into the air war in the Nomonhan/Khalkin-Gol battle in the Summer of 1939. He starts us off with the Japanese air buildup and the token air force the Soviets have in Mongolia. We're then given the account of the first blows Japan strikes at the Soviets airfields. The Russians respond by bring in their aces from the Spanish Civil War and their clandestine China support.

    We are told about the Soviet buildup and first battles, where the Japanese planes, such as the Ki-27 fighter, outperform the I-16 fighter, and the Russians struggle to bring more numbers in to gain control.

    The climax of that struggle is in July and August, when the "quantity is their quality" of the Russians manages to smother the Japanese air component and go on the offensive. Finally the great air battle over the Khalkin-Gol area is waged, with pilots from both sides landing to pick up their shot down comrades, grounded Japanese pilots using their swords on the Russians, and many aces are created on both sides.

    Nedialkov goes on to give us the list of planes used by both sides, and the list of aces for the Soviets and Japanese.

    This is a scholarly work, in which Nedialkov gives us the list of kill claims for both sides, and the three or four different versions of them, thanks to over claims by both sides and propaganda efforts. He also gives us the performance of the many planes and tables of kill ratios. So people looking for personal stories will be disappointed. The translation is also a little iffy at times as far as grammar is concerned. Plus his bibliography is mostly in Cyrillic.

    Overall, this would be a good work for the person interested in finding details about the air war in this little-known but important campaign.
     
    JJWilson likes this.
  2. JJWilson

    JJWilson Well-Known Member

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    Sounds interesting to me, I don't know much of any details about the campaign on the land or in the air.
     
  3. Takao

    Takao Ace

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  4. lwd

    lwd Ace

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    Over on j-aircraft they've commented on the fact the Japanese or perhaps just the IJN didn't really tend to subscribe to the whole "ace" thing. Units kept track of losses inflicted on the opposition but individual scores weren't really a concern or matter for book keeping. Was the IJA doing it at this time or is this something that's been reconstructed?
     
  5. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    AFAIK, the websites are all reconstructed. The Hakan Site provides sources for their ace biographies.

    I believe that the IJAAF did not start keeping individual scores until much later, and the only for Home Defense units. Propaganda and keeping up civilian morale.
     
  6. ColHessler

    ColHessler Member

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    Well, nonetheless, Appendix B has the Soviet aces and Appendix C has the Japanese aces. The high scorer shown on the Japanese side is Hiromiti Shinohara with 58 kills, and on the Soviet side, Nikolai Gerdev with 11.
     
  7. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    AFAIK, Hiromichi kept a written record of his kills,counting only those aircraft he had set on fire(not just smoking, but with visible flames).
     
  8. ColHessler

    ColHessler Member

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    happy happy joy joy.
     

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