Operation Allied Force, volume 2
...Air War over Serbia 1999, from Helion & Co
Title: Operation Allied Force, volume 2
Author: Bojan Dimitrijevic & Lt-Gen Jovica Draganic
Publisher: Helion & Co
Air War over Serbia, 1999, volume 2, which is no.18 in the Europe @ War series from Helion & Co. A 90-page soft-cover book in the standard style for this series, with plenty of archive images, which in this one are all in colour, plus the usual section of colour artwork which includes a full colour map and 13 pages of colour profiles showing a mix of both ground vehicles and aircraft from both sides of the story.
After a helpful Introduction, the rest of this story is spread over 6 chapters. These tackle the Command arrangements of Operation Allied Force, and that gives a level of detail that we didn't hear at the time. For what was an operation under the auspices of NATO, the command arrangements had plenty of complications. Then there are NATO Combat Experience as well as the contrasting RV i PVO Experience. Then the NATO strikes on the RV i PVO follow that, and the complexities of the operation are clear. Aircraft taking part were based on Carriers, in Italy, Germany and Turkey while others flew direct from bases in the UK and even the continental USA. New weapons were used, including the Rivet Joint and B2 Stealth bomber, along with the JDAM (Joint Direct Attack Munition) and SLAM (Standoff Land Attack Missile) and plenty of UAVs. Even an F117 Stealth fighter was brought down by the Serbs. The book is naturally rounded off with a Conclusion, that analyses the campaign which was successful in getting the Serbs to leave Kosovo and it was done with no lives lost by the NATO forces engaged in the campaign.
It is also clear that the Serbian forces used any collateral damage from the NATO attacks to influence the media, to try and force public opinion among the NATO partners to protest against the campaign and this clearly affected the allied RoE (Rules of Engagement). One final point to mention is the inclusion of the use of the 30mm depleted uranium cored ammunition by the A-10 ground attack aircraft, and how radiation levels have remained a problem in the area. I found this an interesting read, while the photos have lots of great references for modellers.
Thanks to Helion & Co for the review copy.