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North Korean Aviation

...an Eye Witness Account, from Key Publishing via Pen & Sword

Title: North Korean Aviation
Author: Gerry Manning
Publisher: Key Publishing
ISBN: 978-1-80282-037-9

North Korea is still one of those places which has an air of mystery about it, perhaps not unlike Eastern Europe in the days of the Cold War. This addition to the handy series of books from Key Publishing is the result of the author's invitation to attend an air show in the country in 2016. A small format 80-page soft-cover book, with this Key Publishing series now distributed by Pen & Sword.
The book is split across 4 chapters, starting with the description of how the journey started, with the organisation of the tour group that had been organised thanks to an invite from North Korea, and how the travel, and rules for behaviour were explained to the tour members. That is followed by coverage of the 2-day air show itself, including a super selection of photo from the event, illustrating both military and civilian aircraft which participated in the event. While only 150 foreign visitors had responded to the invitation to attend, apparently 15,000 local workers were allowed to attend, and witness an event they would not have had a chance to see before. Once the air show was over, there was an opportunity to see more of North Korea on the ground, though guided of course. This tells us what the author saw of the country and the people going about their daily lives. In travelling, local airports were not busy apparently, with in some cases just 3 flights scheduled all day. Visits to various memorials, and apparently plenty of impressive statues, plus more military hardware on show at the Victorious Fatherland Liberation War Museum, one which to us would relate to the Korean War. It closes with the journey home, which went smoothly.
Lots of photos throughout the book and an interesting account of what must be described as an interesting visit. An unusual but rare insight inside this very closed Asian nation. Modellers and aircraft enthusiasts for both military and civilian aircraft will find something to enjoy in here.
Thanks to Pen & Sword for the review copy.

Robin

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