Home from Siberia: The Secret Odysseys of Interned American Airmen in World War II (Military History Ser. Series, 16)

Home from Siberia: The Secret Odysseys of Interned American Airmen in World War II (Military History Ser. Series, 16)As War Spread Across The World At The End Of 1941, The Soviet Union Found Itself Between A Rock Known As Nazi Germany And A Hard Place Called Imperial Japan With All Its Forces Battling Germany In The West, The Soviet Union Had To Keep Peace On Its Isolated And Vulnerable Eastern Borders To Avoid Risking Its Status As A Neutral Country In The War Between The United States And Japan, The Soviet Union Interned Many American Flyers Who Crashed Or Made Emergency Landings In Soviet Territory After Bombing Japanese Targets.This Is The Long Secret And Nearly Forgotten Story Of How The Soviet Commissariat For Internal Affairs Interned 291 Young Americans In Siberia And, At The Risk Of War On A Second Front, Eventually Smuggled Four Groups Of Them To South Central Asia And Finally Across The Iranian Border.Official U.S Military Records Of The Internments Are Impersonal And Sketchy To Tell The Story In Its Entirety, Otis Hays, Jr., Sought Out Surviving Airmen And Found Some Who Had Smuggled Rudimentary Diaries Out Of The Soviet Union And Helped Piece Together The Tale. Otis Hays tells how U.S airmen landed their damaged airplanes in Soviet Russia during World War II Most of these airmen came from the Aleutian Islands and were on bombing missions against the Japanese islands known as the Kuriles When their planes got damaged they knew they could not make it back to the U.S air base, so they landed in Petropavlosk or Vladivostok A few planes came from China In each case the Soviets would intern the U.S airmen, since they were a neutral country in relationship with the Japanese The interned men traveled across Siberia to be interned near Tashkent in present day Uzbekistan It is interesting to read about the men and how the passed the time One of the groups had to jump from their plane and landed in the wilderness where they had to live off very little They all survived, but some of them were losing a pound a day until they were located and rescued by the Russians who were rather friendly and hospitable, giving nearly everything they had, which was not very much at all.Actually, the coolest thing about this story is that the Soviets engineered escapes for the internees, and they escaped into Iran along roads heavily used for transporting Lend Lease supplies Hays says that the Soviets were very skeptical of English and American proposals, so it seems a bit odd that t

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  • Paperback
  • 248 pages
  • Home from Siberia: The Secret Odysseys of Interned American Airmen in World War II (Military History Ser. Series, 16)
  • Otis Hays
  • English
  • 07 May 2019
  • 9781585440108