The 100-year History of Naval Aviation Warfare

From the Wright brothers' first flight in 1903, naval aviation swiftly evolved into a critical component of warfare. World War I witnessed the first significant use of aircraft in naval combat, primarily for reconnaissance and bombing missions. In World War II, the aircraft carrier emerged as a game-changer, enabling naval forces to project air power far from their home bases. The Cold War era saw a continued emphasis on naval aviation, with both the United States and the Soviet Union amassing large fleets of aircraft carriers and supporting aircraft. In recent decades, naval aviation has continued to play a vital role in conflicts around the world, from the Persian Gulf War to the ongoing War on Terror. Today, naval aviation remains an integral part of modern warfare, providing air superiority, reconnaissance, strike capabilities, and support for amphibious operations.

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