A number of columns in the trade magazines, along with the occasional report issued by the War Department, kept the aeronautical engineering community updated on the progress of the war or at least on the "official version" of the progress.
Seen in the light of postwar histories written with fairly full access to the official records of both sides (by writers who knew the outcome), many of these reports read simply as propaganda. In some cases they were, in others, they were good-faith reports based on incomplete, or sometimes inaccurate, information the Fog of War extends far back from the battle lines after all. The accounts here, with few exceptions, are heavily air-centric, as befits the target audiences of the magazines.
Aviation, the McGraw-Hill organ, began their Aviation's "War Communique, America at War" series of reports in January, 1942, and continued them up to the end of the war in September, 1945, missing only the February, 1945, issue, for a total of 44 reports. The reports were not bylined and were probably put together by staff from press releases and other input from the War Department. There were occasional action reports in "The Aviation News" section.
"Aviation Abroad" was a long-term monthly column, dating to before the beginning of my collection.
Various subheads and sidebars appeared in the "Aviation Abroad" feature. "International Briefs," "Washington Windsock," "On Schedule," "European Front Reports," "Aviation Defense" were among those that had content reported here.
Air News, from Phillip Andrews Publishing (the same publisher who produced Air Tech), had a regular column from their correspondent in London, Ralph Michaelis. It began as "London Letter" by Ralph Michaelis, Air News British Correspondent; the column name changed to "Britain at War" in April, 1943, at first "with London Letter and Front Line Sketches" by Ralph Michaelis, RAF; in July, 1943, they dropped the "with London Letter and Front Line Sketches" header.
Their "Bulletin Board" column was visual, with (typically six) captioned photos showing planes or detail photos with current interest.
The "Wing Tips" column incorporated short news stories, gossip, etc, corresponded roughly to Aviation's "Aviation Abroad" column and subheads.
"War Perspective" was a frequent editorial-news column that largely focused on issues in the war that were not aviation related.
Air Tech (also from Phillip Andrews Publishing, merged with Air News in September, 1945) had "Shop Talk" and "Tech Album" (mostly visual) columns dealing with items of topical interest.
Flying, in its various titles, was the Ziff-Davis presence in the field. Their occasional "War in the Air" articles were strongly visual, though some had considerable editorial content.
The "Have You Seen?" column was completely visual, featuring captioned photos of new planes or features or of general news interest. Many images from the column have been copied out as separate files and are linked from the page of the plane they reference.
"At Deadline" (byline Max Karant) and "Washington Report" (no regular byline) were fairly regular.
"Washington Report" and "London Survey" (byline Peter Masefield) were produced in conjunction with The Aeroplane, the British aviation magazine.
"From Headquarters" (byline Lt Col Harold E Hartney, AF Res) is a compilation of gossip and goings-on mostly in Washington, DC. Hartney's column has a lot of personal touches about well-known airmen.
Later in the War, "Report from Washington" became a regular feature, arranged for simultaneous presentation in Flying and The Aeroplane. Also, later the byline of "London Survey" changed.
Articles in the "Special Issues" RAF, USAAF, USN aviation generally dealt with organization and equipment of the various Sections, Commands, Services, Divisions, etc, but sometimes included action or progress reports.
A "best planes" article in Skyways, "Battles' Baptism Proves Our Planes Best" [ HTML ] includes a general discussion of the progress of the air war through 1942.
All of the magazines had "Letters to the Editor" columns that occasionally contained interesting or valuable information.
All of the magazines, except Air Tech, also included articles on commercial and private aviation. In general, those materials will not be included on this site, which is focused on warplanes, their components, their production and their use.