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Air warfare - Peter W Gray

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Air warfare - history, theory and practice
Peter W Gray
Paperback / softback
Bloomsbury Academic
UK Publication Date

Air Warfare provides an introduction to the subject's theory, history and practice. As well as delivering an up to date look at the strategy, and historiography of air power, Peter Gray explores the theories behind air power and looks at the political, legal and moral dimensions of the application of air power. Topics covered include: - Key military strategists and their legacy - Air power's strategic effects - Leadership, management and command - Tactics, technology and operations The book draws on primary sources including official narratives and published reports, examines key thinkers in the study of air power, and discusses topics such as concepts of warfare as an art or science, cultural perceptions of air power, and the experience of being an airman. With its broad scope and thorough coverage of a range of key topics, Air Warfare takes air power beyond the study of individual campaigns, or controversies, providing a multi-disciplinary approach to air power studies.

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Peter Gray is RAeS Senior Research Fellow in Air Power Studies, University of Birmingham, UK.

Peter Gray has written a unique and invaluable addition to the international lexicon of air power. He emphasises and illustrates by example the constant need to examine the subject, whether doctrine, operations, command or ethics, in its broadest context. He combines a clarity of detail with a masterly strategic grasp across a century . His well-balanced analysis of the Historiography and Doctrinal evolution is particularly insightful. The reader is constantly challenged. Deeper study is facilitated by a very comprehensive bibliography. Even in a strong contemporary field, Air Warfare is an indispensable introduction to Air Power for students and practitioners alike.
Air Vice-Marshal Tony Mason

A textbook (self-confessedly) with this title should hold few surprises regarding its contents. Surprisingly, it does, widening its usability beyond students of modern military history. Chapters cover the thinking about, and practical aspects of, warfare 'in the third dimension.' Although this is not unexpected, Gray (air power studies, Univ. of Birmingham, UK) treats each topic in a succinct, scholarly way (a good third of this small book consists of notes and bibliography). Refreshing, however, is the author's attention to contextual development (especially the interaction between theory and practice) and the attention paid to the definition of key terms. For example, the meaning of air doctrine is fully explored, and the author is clearly sensitive to shifting definitions and their uses. This explication of how to approach an historical problem, coupled with sound advice on the evaluation of primary and secondary sources exemplified by 'case studies,' clearly moves the readership for this book beyond upper-level undergraduates interested solely in military history. … [An] extremely useful book. Summing Up: Highly recommended. Upper-division undergraduates and above.

Air Warfare: History, Theory and Practice is an introductory textbook of great value for officers and practitioners, military historians and experts, strategic and defense studies students and scholars. It is also a useful and very readable book for non-specialists.
Journal of Contemporary History

A highly recommended read for academics, students and practitioners of air power alike.

A detailed and documented historical analysis, 'Air Warfare: History, Theory and Practice' by Peter Gray (RAeS Senior Research Fellow, Air Power Studies, University of Birmingham, UK) is exceptionally well written, organized and presented. Enhanced for academia and non-specialist general readers with an interest in air warfare with forty-two pages of Note; a twenty-two page Bibliography; and a nineteen page Index, 'Air Warfare: History, Theory and Practice' is very strongly recommended for community and academic library Military Aviation History reference collections and supplemental studies lists.
The Midwest Book Review

There are many brief treatments of the history of air power currently available. This book is much more than that. It offers the reader a series of cogent and thoughtful discussions of air power--its theory and practice, its ethics and morality, its vast and diverse literature, how to study it, and how to think and write about it. It is very much worth the attention of students and practitioners of air warfare.
Richard R. Muller, USAF School of Advanced Air & Space Studies, USA

In this most innovative and interesting book, Pete Gray offers new and refreshing insights into the subject of air warfare. Tackling key issues through a mixture of case studies and extensive archival research, the book offers a new approach to our understanding of the development of air power and aerial warfare, challenging a range of misconceptions, misapprehensions and misunderstandings in a robust and thought provoking manner. This book makes a significant contribution to the field, and should be regarded as essential reading for anyone wishing to gain understanding of air warfare.
David Jordan, King's College London, UK

Keyword Index
Air warfare.|Air warfare - History.|Air warfare - Moral and ethical aspects.|Air warfare - Political aspects.|Aeronautics, Military.|Strategy.|Air warfare - Historiography.
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