Air Power and the Gulf War

An acknowledged aerospace historian, Mr. Richard P. Hallion
is an associate for the Smithsonian Institution employed in the research division.A former Charles A. Lindbergh Professor of Aerospace History, Mr. Hallion has written or edited thirteen other books, including The Wright Brothers: Heirs of Prometheus (1978), Test Pilots: The Frontiersmen of Flight (1988), and The History of Battlefield Air Attack, 1911-1945 (1989), while professor at the Army War College.Mr. Hallion writes Storm over Iraq from an academic perspective, using military history and the ascendancy of air power as the focus point for his book.
Mr. Richard P. Hallion’s Storm over Iraq opens with the origins of air power since World War I and its subsequent development into the current aircraft and weaponry of the 21st century.Mr. Hallion traces the history of air-combat techniques employed in the battle over Iraq, analyzes the weaponry used (including the remarkable F-117A stealth fighter), and points out the shortcomings in the Allies’ performance, notably in combat search and rescue.Mr. Hallion makes it a point to directly correlate these
technological advancements in military machinery to the route of Allied victory in the Persian Gulf War of 1990-91.Mr. Hallion illustrates that these advancements in air power, used in the Gulf War, had to overcome a series of misfortunes, not only because of unsatisfactory performances in previous combat missions, but also due in part to political interference.Mr. Hallion stresses that the doomed relationship between using air power for exercises it was never designed to do and individuals’ political agendas, undermined the effectiveness of air power for several decades (Hallion 52).This black eye over the effectiveness of air power was laid to rest when the Allies were able to force Saddam Hussein out of Kuwait almost entirely by aerial suppression.
In thefirst chapter of Mr. Hallion’s book, he exami…