Thirty years ago the U.S. Naval Institute debuted Naval History. With 163 issues under its belt, the magazine remains the only publication dedicated to documenting and preserving the history of the U.S. Sea Services—the Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard. Over the years, two of Naval History’s most popular subjects have been aviation and the Pacific war. So it makes sense to focus on those topics in this milestone issue.
“The Plane That Won the War” is a broad look at the SBD Dauntless dive bomber, the key weapon in the Navy’s Pacific war arsenal, according to author Barrett Tillman. The first of Tillman’s 50 books was The Dauntless Dive Bomber of World War II (Naval Institute Press, 1976), the idea for which occurred to him while he had “rivet gun in hand” restoring a Dauntless acquired by his family.