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Royal Lao Air Force AT-28 Model

$299.00

Available on backorder

Description

Royal Lao Air Force AT-28 Model

Fly with the Royal Lao Air Force in this hand crafted AT-28 model. Each piece is carefully carved from wood and hand painted to provide a piece you’ll love.

The Royal Lao Air Force (French: Aviation Royale Laotiènne – AVRL), best known to the Americans by its English acronym RLAF, was the air force component of the Royal Lao Armed Forces (FAR), the official military of the Royal Lao Government and the Kingdom of Laos during the Laotian Civil War between 1960 and 1975.
The original Lao military aviation establishment was the ‘Laotian Aviation’ (French: Aviation laotiènne), established by the French on 28 January 1955 as a small aerial observation and transport arm of the then National Lao Army (ANL). As the French withdrew from Indochina, the Lao Aviation was supported by American aid. With the addition of offensive capabilities, it morphed into the Royal Lao Air Force (RLAF).
The RLAF struggled into existence in the face of its enemies, while dealing with its own internal divisions as well as bucking a tide of pilot and aircraft losses. As it expanded from its 1960 foundation, and as the fighting power of the Royal Lao Army was diminished and broken during the 1960s, the RLAF came to carry the weight of the battle against Vietnamese communist invaders and local Pathet Lao insurgents. Despite its continual drain of heavy pilot and aircraft losses, the RLAF grew to the point where it flew 30,000 combat sorties annually against its enemies in the years 1970 through 1972, as well performing essential logistics duties.
The RLAF began its operations as a liaison, logistics and transport unit. Its initial stock were a melange of French and American supplied rotary-wing and fixed-wing aircraft inherited from its predecessor, Aviation Laotienne. On 9 January 1961, the new RLAF was supplied with six AT-6 Texans as its first strike aircraft. Although these were quickly lost, they were replaced by five T-28 Trojans. Despite ongoing losses, the T-28 inventory would eventually burgeon under American auspices to 75 Trojans on board in 1973. It would also acquire ten AC-47 gunships for a time. Pilot procurement for the swelling fleet would always be problematic, with the inadequate roster of Lao and Hmong pilots being filled out with Thai mercenary pilots, and a few Americans from Air America. By the time American aid was withdrawn in 1973, dooming the force, the RLAF would total 180 aircraft, both fixed wing and helicopters. Wiki