The Soviet Union began assisting the People's Republic of China in its establishment of a modern air force in 1950, when Soviet Air Force regiments were sent to train local pilots. China's involvement in the Korean War in late October 1950 inevitably drew Soviet pilots into the war. A total of 52 Soviet pilots scored five or more victories in the Korean War. The history of these covert actions has been a long-buried secret and this book will be the first English publication to detail the only instance when the Cold War between Russia and the US became "hot." This book uncovers Soviet combat experiences during the Korean War from detailed unit histories and rare first-hand accounts. With access to extensive Russian archives, the authors offer an enthralling insight into an air war that has been largely covered up and neglected, illustrated with previously unpublished photographs and detailed full-color profiles.
Nikolai Vasil'evich Sutiagin, the top-scoring Soviet air ace of the Korean War, flew his MiG-15 in lethal dogfights against American Sabres and Australian Meteors. He is credited with at 22 'kills'. Yet the full story of his extraordinary achievements has never been told. Only now, with the opening of Russian archives, can an authoritative account of his wartime exploits be written. The authors use official records, the reminiscences of Sutiagin's comrades and his wife's diary to reconstruct in vivid detail the career of one of the great fighter pilots.