cover image Forgotten Few: Polish Air Force in the Second World War

Forgotten Few: Polish Air Force in the Second World War

Adam Zamoyski / Author Hippocrene Books $24.95 (239p) ISBN 978

Fleeing to Britain after the Germans captured their homeland, the pilots of the Polish Air Force played an important role in the Battle of Britain and the air war in the European theater. Flying RAF planes, they shot down 745 enemy aircraft, with another 175 unconfirmed, and 190 flying bombs targeted at London. The British government was at first reluctant to utilize these military refugees, Zamoyski notes in his recap of familiar history, until heavy RAF losses in the defense of France and the evacuation at Dunkirk left Fighter Command no choice. Zamoyski (The Polish Way) chronicles the pilots' exploits in the skies over Europe and their warm relationship on the ground with the British people-especially the women-until the betrayal of their homeland by the Allies at the 1945 Yalta Conference. The story concludes sadly with an account of the development of anti-Polish feelings in Britain at war's end. Photos. (Jan.)