While it has been routine practice since the Bolshevik Revolution to refer to the Soviet Union (Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, USSR, CCCP) and Russia interchangeably, in light of Perestroika and more recent history, I prefer to make a distinction between the two political entities. The RSFSR (Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic) was a state — the dominant, but not the only, state — in the Soviet union; it also corresponded with the historical political entity Russia.

Because so much equipment was shipped Lend-Lease to the Soviets in WWII, a range of Americans have come to consider the home-grown Soviet military capacity (with the exception of tanks) to have been inferior and unable to meet the German threat without American help. While there can be no doubt that American aid shored up Soviet capabilities during the early phases of the war while the Soviets were establishing an industrial base beyond the reach of effective German air action and continued to have a positive impact throughout hostilities, the Soviets' own contributions should not be ignored.

Important US types sent were A-20, B-25 and C-47, all of which everybody loved, and the P-39, which the Soviets took to their hearts even though nobody else seemed to like them. Links to photos of those types in Soviet (Red Star) markings will be listed here along with photos of Red Air Force types. Articles will include any on particular Soviet types and on the organization and operations of the Red Air Force, as well as stories with a Russian connection.

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