Based on the past 40 years of research by Lawrence J. Hickey, International Historical Research Associates, founded in 1983 as International Research and Publishing Corporation, has compiled the most authoritative aviation history archive relating to the Army Air Corps and its Japanese opponents in the Southwest Pacific Area (SWPA) during World War II. This primarily covers the operations of Gen. MacArthur’s Fifth Air Force, commanded by Gen. George C. Kenney. Currently, IHRA is finishing production of several more definitive volumes of the Eagles Over the Pacific book series about the air war in the SWPA to add to the three volumes already in print. Lawrence J. “Larry” Hickey, President of IHRA, is a distinguished aviation historian; one of the world’s leading authorities on air operations in the SWPA during the war. In addition to his publishing, he has been a consultant for programs on the History Channel, as well as appearing there in a program about the wartime history of the B-25. He has also consulted on a World War II movie script.
In 2002, Larry and his staff began a joint project with a group of distinguished aviation researchers, historians, photo collectors, map makers, artists and translators, now some 50 people in 13 countries, to compile and produce in English what will be the definitive multi-volume history of the air war in Europe during the first 16 months of World War II. This will be covered in seven heavily illustrated primary volumes, depicting the period from the German invasion of Poland in September of 1939 through the end of the Battle of Britain and the year 1940. These will be supplemented with additional volumes containing additional photos and lengthy appendices relating to the air forces and combat operations of all of the participants. To date, the members of this project have gathered over 25,000 photos and assembled an immense volume of research data from which thousands of pages have been translated from source materials in the Polish, Norwegian, French, Dutch and German languages into English. Anyone interested in helping with or contributing to this project should contact IHRA through the contact page.
Lawrence J. Hickey
Larry has been fascinated by aviation since his boyhood in Wichita, Kansas, where his father, Joseph, was a Project Engineer for the military division of the Boeing Company. In 1966, Larry graduated from Rockhurst College in Kansas City with a degree in History. He then spent the next year living in Saigon in the household of a top-ranking Vietnamese royal family while studying the native culture and language and working as a researcher for the Department of the Air Force’s Project CHECO, a branch of the Operations Analysis Division of HQ, Seventh Air Force. During this period, he traveled throughout Vietnam interviewing combat personnel, and he frequently flew as an observer on reconnaissance missions with Forward Air Controllers. After completing several acclaimed studies on air operations in Southeast Asia, he returned to the U.S. to pursue graduate studies at Georgetown University in Washington D.C. He soon accepted a job with the Defense Intelligence Agency where he became the first analyst for the newly formed South Vietnam political desk. During the next four years, Larry worked in the DIA-staffed National Military Intelligence Center in the Pentagon, and he served in the Vietnam Order of Battle Section, the Southeast Asia Situation Room, and then as Political Analyst for North Vietnam. His responsibilities included writing articles for the daily DIA Intelligence Summary and preparing parallel items for the daily intelligence briefing for the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. In 1969, he researched, prepared and personally delivered a major briefing on enemy morale to the Chairman and the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
During most of his career with DIA, he also served with the inter-agency task force known as the Vietnam Special Studies Group, which, under Dr. Henry Kissinger, produced studies on U.S. war policy in support of the Paris peace talks to end the Vietnam War. In this capacity, and at the personal direction of the President, he returned to Vietnam in 1970 for six weeks to conduct field research in the Mekong Delta for a major cease-fire planning study. In January of 1972, Larry was credited with providing the first warning within the Washington intelligence community of the forthcoming, all-out North Vietnamese spring offensive, and thereafter took the lead of reporting on it. As a result of his reputation as one of the top experts within the intelligence community on the Vietnam War, he was invited to serve as a consultant to the National Security Council Staff at White House meetings on enemy plans and operations. At the end of 1972, after a highly successful intelligence career, he left government service to become a private businessman and entrepreneur, pursuing interests in manufacturing, real estate development, writing and publishing. He now lives in Boulder, Colorado with his wife Sue where he is a full time author and publisher.
Jack Fellows is the full-time Art Director for IHRA’s publication projects. His career as an artist spans a period of over 35 years, both as a commercial artist and a painter of fine art. His intense interest in the history of the Pacific air war led to his origination of the Cactus Air Force Art Project, dedicated to the collecting and archiving of historical data relating to that period. Most of his work today illustrates military aviation in the Pacific. An artistic counterpoint to Jack’s military history illustrations is his work as a fine art painter, focusing on figurative pieces, landscapes and occasionally maritime subjects as well. Above all else, he favors the opportunity to paint landscapes in Europe, particularly around the Mediterranean. Jack was invited to show his landscape work at the prestigious Peppertree Ranch Art Show in California in May 2004.
Jack’s work is widely collected in the United States and abroad, by museums and by private collectors. He has won a number of awards over the years, including the R.G. Smith Award for Excellence in Naval Aviation Art (2004), and he is the originator and primary financial backer of the Capt. Duane Whitney Martin Vietnam Airwar Award for Artistic Excellence, awarded annually by the American Society of Aviation Artists. He was president of the American Society of Aviation Artists from 1995 to 1997, is a Life Member of the Puget Sound Group of Northwest Painters, a member of the USAF Art Program, and guest lecturer for the Museum of Flight Visiting Aviator Series. He has approximately one hundred postage stamp designs to his credit, and most of his work is available, published in a variety of formats in both open and limited edition.
For further information and to see more of his work, visit his website.
Information on our co-authors can be found here.
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