In the mail today from ANA:

99 ANAers, Friends of ANA and Naval Aviation,

A number of members have asked for more information about The Boeing Company’s great Public Television program, “Angle of Attack”. In case you missed it before, the schedule is in the attachment. It is a bit long but you should find your local station/service. If not, we urge you to check your local listings or conact your local Public Television broadcaster – this is a great feature you do NOT want to miss.

From a previous posting:
A bit about the documentary… it consists of 2 one hour pieces covering the rich history of Naval Aviation from the beginning and talks to significant events (carrier/aircraft development, Pearl Harbor, Midway, Vietnam, Middle East, & Cold War) and contributions of those involved. Its primary focus is on the aircraft carrier/air wing, but it also highlights maritime patrol, helicopters and future unmanned capability. Additionally Naval Aviation’s contribution to the nation’s space program is included. It touches on several significant social issues (minority and female introductions) that influenced the Navy and Naval Aviation. All of this is intertwined with flight students going through the carrier qualification phase of strike training in Kingsville, TX.

All viewers will find it insightful and informative. I also believe it is a timely piece in that it indirectly and directly articulates the value this capability brings to our nation and its defense. The Boeing Company is proud to have sponsored the production and we are pleased with the quality of The Documentary Group’s efforts. American Public Television has also done a great job of distributing the show.

Angle of Attack
This 2-part documentary chronicles the 100-year history of Naval aviation – from wobbly gliders and the first shipboard landing in 1911 to modern supersonic jets and unmanned aerial vehicles. It deftly interweaves archival footage, interviews with historical and military experts, contemporary footage of cutting-edge aircraft and insights from today’s “Top Gun” fighter pilots in the Marine Corps and Navy.

Part -One (#101H) Duration: 55:42 STEREO TVG
The first half begins by following young men and women on their way to “earning their Wings.” In a rigorous course of instruction, they learn to lift off and land a supersonic aircraft on the deck of an aircraft carrier in the middle of the ocean, still considered one of the most difficult and hazardous tasks. Eugene Ely first attempted the death-defying feat in 1911. Ely’s act of landing a fragile bi-plane on a make-shift wooden deck would eventually transform into a weapon of unprecedented power and influence. The episode concludes with World War II and the US victory in the Pacific, when carrier aviation reigned supreme. However, Naval soon would face a threat to its existence – not from an enemy source, but from a competing technology – the nuclear bomb.

Part – Two (#102H) Duration: 56:01 STEREO TVG
The second half begins with the potential demise of naval aviation, as many in the military establishment promote nuclear weapons and pronounce carrier aviation obsolete. Korea, and later Vietnam, offer a startling reminder of the utility of naval aviation, and undermine the post-World War II conviction that the US will fight all of its wars with nuclear weapons. As the Cold War deepens, the installation of Soviet ballistic missiles in Cuba brings the nation to the brink of nuclear war. Another important function of naval aviation – reconnaissance – rallies world opinion and helps diffuse the crisis. Photographs of the Soviet missiles taken by low-flying naval aviators provide incontrovertible evidence of the Soviet Union’s lying. Following the age of nuclear terror came a new low in Vietnam, where doubts about the military merge with racial animosities to undermine morale among naval aviators. The episode concludes by exploring the technological evolutions like GPS-guided weapons that continue to transform the field. Interviews and vivid archival footage from Afghanistan and Iraq highlights the new moral challenges of asymmetrical warfare today.


Dutch Rauch
Association of Naval Aviation, Inc.

To find a time on your local PBS channel, go to and open the ‘TV Schedules’ link and search on “Angle of Attack” – I’m looking forward to watching.

Oh, by the way, while you are looking, how about also stopping by the ANA website and supporting their efforts to promote all aspects of Naval Aviation by joining?

w/r, SJS


  1. Andy (JADAA)

    Of course, the folks up here in the People’s Democratik Republik of the North Woods wouldn’t deign to schedule anything so war-like. After all, it’s “Public” television. Hope it’ll come out on DVD at some point.


      I am not sure WI Public TV would either. It’s based out of Madison, after all.

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