Listener Allison asked us to talk about the Night Witches before Holly and I even joined the podcast - it was one of the last listener emails Sarah answered before stepping away from the show. Mallorie was next ... followed by Zoe, Jen, Erika, Ford, Aaron, Suzie, Jeanette and so many others whose requests came in via Facebook or Twitter so we don't have an easy way to look them up. At this point, the Night Witches are by far the most-requested subject from Holly's and my time on the show.
If you haven't heard of them: The Night Witches were an all-women's bombing regiment in the Soviet military in World War II. They flew wood-and-canvas biplanes that were never meant to be used in combat. By the end of the war, they'd flown roughly 24,000 combat missions, all of them at night, earning 23 of them the title Hero of the Soviet Union.
The books I referenced are "Night Witches: The Untold Story of Soviet Women in Combat" by Bruce Myles, and. "A Dance with Death: Soviet Airwomen in World War II" edited by Anne Noggle.
Listener mail is from two different people who wrote about school systems that are still effectively segregated today, following our Road to Brown v. Board and Aftermath of Brown v. Board episodes. They're from Chris and Emily.
For more knowledge: Did women volunteers serve in World War II?
Episode link: Night Witches
- Garber, Megan. "Night Witches: The Female Fighter Pilots of World War II." The Atlantic. 7/15/2014. http://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2013/07/night-witches-the-female-fighter-pilots-of-world-war-ii/277779/
- Martin, Douglas. "Nadezhda Popova, WWII 'Night Witch,' Dies at 91." New York Times. 7/14/2013. http://www.nytimes.com/2013/07/15/world/europe/nadezhda-popova-ww-ii-night-witch-dies-at-91.html
- Myles, Bruce. "Night Witches: The Untold Story of Soviet Women in Combat." Presidio Press. 1981.
- Noggle, Anne. "A Dance with Death: Soviet Airwomen in World War II." Texas A&M University Press. 1991.
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