Farnborough Air Show

How the CIA tried to spy on China from the air

 - July 21, 2010, 10:22 AM

AIN defense editor Chris Pocock will be signing copies of his new book here at Farnborough today and tomorrow. Pocock is best known for his histories of the U-2 Dragon Lady, and his latest work is another story of spyplanes in the Cold War.
The Black Bats tells how the CIA went into partnership with nationalist China to fly B-17 and B-26 bombers and P-2 Neptune patrol planes from Taiwan over the mainland. But communist China’s air-defense system adapted to the challenge. Ten of the aircraft were lost and more than 100 aircrew were killed in this epic yet hardly known struggle, Pocock said. The story has never been told before in English, although Pocock’s collaborator, Clarence Fu, has published an account in Chinese.
The book is on sale at the stand of The Aviation Bookshop, which is situated behind the main static aircraft display in Car Park 4. Pocock will be there on both Thursday and Friday from noon until 1 p.m.