The legendary F-14 Tomcat was the weapon of choice to strike hard and fast against the enemies of the United States in the wake of the September 11 attacks. Determined to hit the al-Qaeda bases within Afghanistan, US plans were hampered by the reluctance of neighboring countries to allow US military aircraft to operate from their land bases. This meant that carrier-based F-14s were forced to fly several hundred miles a day to reach their targets, flying thousands of missions involving precision bombing strikes on al-Qaeda and Taliban positions.
A fascinating exploration of modern air warfare, this book details the actions of the F-14 pilots and aircraft involved in Operation Enduring Freedom (2001-present) with eye-opening insights into the tactical approach and wider strategic aims exclusively provided by senior officers from a number of the air wings involved. Written by a leading Tomcat expert with exclusive access to mission reports, combat diaries, first-hand accounts and accompanied by photographs from the author's private collection and fantastic full-color artwork, this reveals the battle experiences of the most famous modern fast jet.
About the Author
Barabara Ware Holmes is the author of several novels for young people, including Charlotte Shakespeare and Annie the Great, illustrated by John Himmelman. She lives in Collingswood, NJ, and Port Clyde, ME.
Jim Laurier is a native of New England and lives in New Hampshire. He attended Paier School of Art in Hamden, Connecticut, from 1974-78, and since graduating with Honours, he has been working professionally in the field of Fine Art and Illustration. He has been commissioned to paint for the US Air Force and has aviation paintings on permanent display at the Pentagon.
"Here he turns his attention to the F-14's use in Operation Enduring Freedom, producing a totally convincing account of the type's involvement. Holmes' empathy with the Tomcat community is evident in the numerous first-hand acounts that he gathered for the book and his ability to set them perfectly in the context of the Operation." Scale Aircraft Modelling (July 2008)
"The text is nicely written and hard to put down once you start reading, especially if you are familiar with the F-14's original mission. The OEF Tomcats could not be further from that initial mission, but it performed with outstanding ability, and the praise comes through in the recollections of the pilots and ground crew. The anecdotes included help put the reader in the cockpit with the pilots, keeping the text from becoming too dry. Coupled with the great photos and dozens of color profile illustrations, this book is a great tribute to the final operations of USN F-14s... This book is highly recommended for anyone interested in the Tomcat, as it does an excellent job of detailing the operational swan song of the F-14." -Chris Banyai-Riepl, Internet Modeler (April 2008)
"Auther Tony Holmes covers these operations in considerable detail and includes stories from pilots and crews about their more interesting missions. This is all enhanced by quality...images provided from official sources. Artist Jim Laurier adds to the book with his superb profiles." -Scott Van Aken, modelingmadness.com (March 2008)