Over the last 70 years, in countless books and essays, Hermann Goring has been defined by his crimes and excess during the Third Reich and the Second World War.
But his activities as a young career military officer in World War-I have invariably been glossed over - until now. "Hermann Goring - Fighter Ace" is the first in-depth look at Goring's role as a military flyer and air combat leader from 1914 through the end of The Great War, and how those experiences shaped the personality that came to the world's attention in 1939.
At the outset of the First World War, Goring was eager to prove his value to his fatherland in initial skirmishes with French troops.
When struck by severe rheumatoid arthritis in September 1914, the twenty-one-year-old officer's burning ambition and ego could not tolerate being sidelined and the following month he forced himself out of a sick bed to begin a new career as an aviation observer. Goring went on to become a fighter pilot with twenty-two downed enemy aircraft to his credit, the last wartime commander of the Red Baron's own fighter wing, Jagdgeschwader Richthofen, and recipient of a row of prestigious medals including Prussia's highest bravery award, the Pour le Merite.
Peter Kilduff has produced a landmark volume based on extensive research into Goring's early military records and thousands of German and Allied documents to put the neophyte airman's life and events into perspective.
Among other resources, Kilduff drew on Goring's own combat reports and related writings.
Illustrated with over eighty drawings and photographs, including many from Goring's private collection and never before published, "Herman Goring - Fighter Ace" is a tour de force of historical material covering the early combat career of one of the twentieth century's most infamous military figures.
- Format: Hardback
- Pages: 224 pages, b&w illustrations throughout
- Publisher: Grub Street
- Publication Date: 28/05/2010
- Category: First World War
- ISBN: 9781906502669