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LAST STAND IN SINGAPORE THE STORY OF 488 SQUADRON RNZAF

  • $32.50
Book Type: S

by Graham Clayton, 284 pages, many B+W photographs, colour map,

long out of print Avonmore books in Australia obtained a few copies and sent me some

No. 488 (NZ) Fighter Squadron was formed in September 1941 with only the commanding officer and two flight commanders having any operational experience. The very first home-based New Zealand fighter squadron, it was quickly sent to Singapore where it arrived shortly before the outbreak of the Pacific War. Equipped with worn Brewster Buffaloes received from a departing RAF squadron, the unit faced a steep learning curve keeping the aircraft operational and developing effective fighter tactics.

By January 1942 No. 488 Squadron was experiencing frequent air combat with Japanese aircraft over Singapore, and towards the end of that month morale briefly rose as a small number Hawker Hurricanes were received. However soon afterwards the unit was forced to withdraw to Sumatra and then Java. Meanwhile many of the ground staff had a harrowing escape from Singapore on one of the last large ships to leave the port in the face of relentless enemy air attack.

New sources on the Singapore air campaign are very rare these days, and Last Stand in Singapore is a welcome recent addition written by the son of a No. 488 Squadron ground crewman. Told from the relatively little-known New Zealand perspective, it is a fresh and realistic account of this historically fascinating period. Drawing on various private diaries and other records, including first-hand accounts from several pilots, the book includes many rare photographs never published before.

LAST STAND IN SINGAPORE THE STORY OF 488 SQUADRON RNZAF

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