Titled after the wartime nickname for the part of North Korea that was the epicentre of a bitter struggle for air superiority over the Korean Peninsula, MiG Alley offers an in-depth analysis of the US Air Force's war in Korea, packed with interesting and exciting personal stories based on first-person testimony from both American and Soviet sources.
Following the end of the Korean War, the prevailing myth in the West was that of the absolute supremacy of US Air Force pilots and aircraft over their Soviet-supplied opponents. The claims of the 10:1 victory-loss ratio achieved by the US Air Force fighter pilots flying the North American F-86 Sabre against their communist adversaries, among other such fabrications, went unchallenged until the end of the Cold War, when Soviet records of the conflict were finally opened.
Packed with first-hand accounts and covering the full range of US Air Force activities over Korea, MiG Alley brings the war vividly to life and the record is finally set straight on a number of popular fabrications. Thomas McKelvey Cleaver expertly threads together US and Russian sources to reveal the complete story of this bitter struggle in the Eastern skies.
“More than sixty-five years after the Korean War, Tom Cleaver provides an objective assessment of the classic jet clashes along the Yalu River. For decades both the U.S. Air Force F-86s and the Communist MiG-15s claimed a 10-1 victory-loss ratio, an impossibility well known to aviation historians. But with rare resources, MiG Alley demonstrates that the Sabres and MiGs were much closer to parity than previously recognized, while paying tribute to the often outnumbered U.S. pilots who kept enemy airpower off the backs of allied ground forces in the south.” —Barrett Tillman, author of 'On Wave and Wing'
“Seen as a whole, MiG Alley is a most interesting read, complementing well the author's history of the US Navy's role in Korea, and genuinely offers perspectives that many might not have considered.” —Aeroplane Monthly