Richard Overy: The Birth of the RAF

May 10, 03:23 PM

Sam Leith talks to historian Richard Overy about his new book The Birth of the RAF, 1918. 

100 years ago this spring, the Royal Air Force took to the skies for the first time. Yet it was far from inevitable that it would come into being, that having done so it would continue to exist beyond the end of the First World War, or even that the Royal Air Force would be Royal. He disentangles a forgotten history of political and public-relations manoeuvring and inter-service rivalry, before looking at the present and future of those who have inherited the mantle of The Few…