When I left Williams AFB, it occurred to me that every base that I was assigned to for pilot training had been shut down by ... The F-86F was equipped with a very crude, if not primitive, navigation system called a “bird dog” receiver ...
Author: General ''Pete'' Piotrowski
Publisher: Xlibris Corporation
Category: Biography & Autobiography
This book covers the remarkable success of a first-generation Polish kid who, at the age of eighteen, enlisted in the United States Air Force during the Korean War. He was one of less than a handful of basic airmen who rose to the rank of four-star general. More importantly, it covers the reincarnation of WW II Air Commandos under the code name of Jungle Jim, as well as US combat air operations from 1961 through 1967 flying obsolete B-26s and the newest jet fighter, the F-4D. Then airman Piotrowski qualified for aviation cadet training and earned his first wings as a navigator and electronic warfare officer (EWO). Following assignments in Korea and Japan, he returned to the United States for pilot training ranking number one in his class and qualifying for jet fighters. He was selected for Project Jungle Jim and became a leading air force expert in conventional weapons and tactics. His flying ability, combat experience, and tactical expertise led to his assignment at the Air Force Top Gun School to instruct air force generals headed for Vietnam on conventional weapons and tactics. Following school and staff assignments, he was selected to command the Fortieth Tactical Group, Aviano, Italy. He led the group for three years, receiving a rating as "Best Wing in the USAF." Following Aviano, he was a special assistant to, and troubleshooter for, General Jones, air force chief. Shortly thereafter, he was selected to build the 552nd AWAC equipped with the E-3A aircraft and bring it to combat status. Next, he commanded Air Defense TAC, where he was selected to review the Desert One failure with five other officers. He provided inside information on how the rescue attempt in Iran unraveled. On another special assignment, he was sent to Saudi Arabia as a special advisor to the Saudi chief of the defense staff with the mission to improve Saudi Air Defense. Following that, then major general Piotrowski went to Oman with a diplomatic portfolio to forge an agreement with the Omni government on joint military training of US and Omani forces. Subsequently, he was assigned to the Tactical Air Command as the director of operations and vice commander. Here he grappled with a number of aircraft-related problems and brought the stealth fighter into the operational inventory. Next, he commanded Ninth Air Force with twelve subordinate wings with roughly one thousand fighter aircraft assigned, with responsibilities for air warfare in support of ground forces in the Middle East. On one of his many visits to Sudan, he stopped an invasion from Ethiopia in one day. He was promoted to the rank of general to serve as the vice chief of the air force. Here he revealed how the JCS operates, as well as inside information on the capture of the Achille Lauro hijackers and the punitive raid on Libya. His last assignment was commanding the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) and the United States Space Command (USSPACECOM), where he had the opportunity to host and brief senior military members of the Soviet Union and People's Republic of China.