Slovenští Letci 1939-1945

Jirí Rajlich, Jirí Sehnal
LABEL spol. s r.o., ©1991
64 Pages, Softbound

Reviewed By Chris Banyai-Riepl

While this may not be a new title to some, it's new to me and it's an interesting book indeed. So much has been written about the Luftwaffe, but little has been mentioned of their smaller allies. This book goes into detail the history of the Slovak Air Force from 1939 through 1945, outlining the early beginnings with Czech aircraft and finishing up with German and Italian planes.

The text is in both Czech and English and is very interesting to read. The Slovak history during the Second World War is an interesting one and this provides a glimpse at what these people went through for those six years. The Slovak Air Force found themselves fighting several countries during their short existance, including Hungary and Poland, in addition to the Soviet Union. As the war progressed, Slovak pilots also found themselves up against the Americans as well, often times fighting in inferior aircraft. Not all of the Slovak pilots were taking to the air over Eastern Europe, though. Several managed to escape to the West and joined the fight on the opposite side, with the RAF. This title mentions their story as well. The book finishes this interesting saga with a description of the collapse of the Slovak Air Force and the eventual service alongside the Red Army.

In addition to the interesting story this book is filled with photos of Slovak aircraft, most of which I've never seen before. There are also several pages filled with color profiles, showing the eclectic collection of aircraft flown by the Slovaks throughout the Second World War. Tables of data are also included, outlining the organization of the air force, losses during conflicts, and even a table showing the desertions of Slovak aircraft to abroad.

If you're looking for something different to finish all those German planes in, this book will provide you with an interesting story and photos to back it up. The blue cross with the red dot will definitely add some interesting color to your shelves and this book will allow you to answer the inevitable questions with ease.

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