Defending Rodinu - Volume 2
This book is number 26 of the Europe at War series and the second volume dealing with the Russian Air Force. The book is a detailed history of the Russian Air Force from 1961 through 1991. The book is divided into 11 sections. Each section touches on a specific topic describing the development and operational history of the Soviet Air Defense Force. In addition, the book has 2 Appendices, as well as a section describing the documents used in the book, as well as a Bibliography and notes. In addition, you will find a total of 24 profiles; 19 of then pertain to POV aircrafts of the period and 3 airliners shot down by POV, 1 American involved in a collision and a Turkish aircraft shot down by the POV. Two additional profiles are located on the back cover of the book.
Each section of the book deals with a specific topic and by its nature each section is fairly small, yet the topic is well described. Some of the topics include: Soviet Air defense Force; Development of SAMs and ABM Development; and Balloon Busting to mention a few. The book ends with two Appendices. The first roster deals with the Commanders of the Soviet Air Force (PVO) since 1945. You will find a picture of the commanders with their years of service for the PVO, as well as their awards. The second deals with all the recorded Aerial Victories of the POV from 1945 through 1991. The reason the book ends in 1991 is that is the date the Soviet Union collapsed. For those readers that do not know Russian, it should be noted that the name of the book could be translate to English as: DEFENDING THE MOTHERLAND. Yes, Rodinu can be translated both as: Family or as in this case as Motherland.
I have to admit that I learned a little more about the POV, their way of thinking, as well as their equipment and history. The photos are sharp and generally show the aircrafts very well. The order of battle of the POV, although dated, is interesting. I also enjoyed the table of contents describing the aircrafts and missiles used by POV. This is a very good book for anyone interested in the POV history. I do have one regret and that is that I could not compare this book to its first volume, which I suspect may be as good.
My thanks to Casemate Publishers for the opportunity to review the book.