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Dive Bombing, Midway, and the Evolution of Carrier Airpower
  • ISBN/SKU: 9781591149699
  • Binding: Paperback and ebook
  • Era: 20th Century
  • Number of Pages: 288
  • Subject: Battle of Midway, World War II
  • Date Available: March 2012
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Full Description:

"Destined for Glory by Thomas Wildenberg is a reprint of a 1998 book that STILL DESERVES TO BE READ, MARKED AND INWARDLY DIGESTED." Warships International Fleet Review (UK)

On 4 June 1942, three squadrons of U.S. Navy Dauntless dive bombers destroyed Japan’s carrier force at Midway and changed the course of the Pacific war. As Wildenberg demonstrates in this book, the key ingredient to the Navy’s success was the planning and training devoted to the tactic of dive bombing. Examining how political, economic, technical, and operational factors influenced the development of carrier airpower between 1925 and 1942, he shows why dive bombing became the Navy’s weapon of choice. He also pays tribute to the select group of naval aviators who drove the evolution of carrier tactics. Although many books have been written about the Battle of Midway, this is the first to focus on how the Navy came to develop the one aerial weapon that proved to be the decisive instrument of victory.

Thomas Wildenberg is a historian specializing in the development of naval aviation and logistics at sea and is the author of several books on naval history including Ship Killer co-authored with Normal Polmar.


Destined for Glory is an effective history of the aircraft, the carriers, and the tactics that culminated in American victory…Destined for Glory serves well as a primer on the development of the Navy’s carrier aviation arm, still dominant, some seven decades following the turning point of the War in the Pacific... It constitutes an appropriate lead-in to such classics as John Lundberg’s The First Team. This book is highly recommended for any fan of naval aviation in particular, or carrier aviation in general.”

The Journal of America’s Military Past, Winter 2013

“At Midway, a handful of Dauntless dive bomber crews changed the course of World War II in the Pacific and the thrust of naval power forever. Destined for Glory tells the story of how a few tenacious visionaries forged the capability that made this possible. It’s never been told better.”

— Capt. Robert L. Rasmussen, USN (Ret.), Director, National Museum of Aviation

“Thomas Wildenberg does a superb job of filling in the blanks on the development of tactics and advances in technology that led to the success of the carrier strike forces in World War II.”

— Capt. E. T. Woolridge, USN (Ret.), author of Night Fighter over Korea

“This book deals with an extremely important subject little covered in the existing literature. It presents a sound, comprehensive analysis of the development of U.S. carrier aviation.”

— John B. Lundstrom, author of The First Team and the Guadalcanal Campaign


Thomas Wildenberg is an independent historian/scholar specializing in the development of naval aviation and logistics at sea. He has written extensively about the U.S. Navy during the interwar period. His articles have appeared in several scholarly journals including the Journal of Military History, American Neptune, and Proceedings. He is also the author of three books on U.S. naval history that cover such varied topics as replenishment at sea and the development of dive bombing. Besides All the Factors of Victory and Destined for Glory, his most recent work, co-authored with Norman Polmar is Ship Killer: A History of the American Torpedo.

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