A book about the “Trujillo’s Boys” was long overdue, and I’m really happy that it was my friend and excellent aero-historian Hélio Higuchi who took upon the task of writing it. And what a book he wrote! “A Serviço do Generalíssimo” is packed with seldom-documented historical details about the group of Brazilian combat pilots hired by Dominican dictator Rafael Trujillo in the late 40s, to man his impressive air arm.
In this book Hélio explores the origins of the group, how they ended in the Dominican Republic and the many combat missions they flew, mostly during ill-fated attempts to overthrow the Generalíssimo, including obviously the Luperón Bay incident in which the Caribbean Legion tried to land an invasion force on the island, with tragic results.
Another interesting episode the book presents is the highly secret mission to bomb the Venezuelan Capital, Caracas, for which the pilots established a clandestine “air base” in the middle of the Amazonian jungle. Fortunately, the plan came to naught and the mission was never accomplished.
The book contains excellent photos, many of them published for the first time, and also comes with a series of color profiles neatly done by Gílson Marôco. Hélio took great care in detailing the many combat types that the Dominican Military Aviation Corps operated in the late 40s and early 50s, and a whole chapter is devoted to them.
The only downside -at least for English-speaker readers- is that the book is written in Portuguese, and I guess that those who will purchase the book, would also need a good English-Portuguese dictionary, or have Google translation at hand. (Hopefully, for us Spanish-speaking individuals, reading Portuguese is a lot easier.)
There are a couple of copies of the book available in Amazon, but honestly, they are very expensive. So, if you want to buy a copy directly from the editor -the book’s price is US$31.00- you will have to drop an email to Revista Assas who is handling the marketing and sales. Make sure to include your postal address so these guys can tell you the cost of shipping. Fortunately, it can be paid via PayPal or Credit Card. But again, it would be much better to contact them first.
Title: A Serviço Do Generalíssimo – Os Pilotos Brasileiros Na República Dominicana
Author: Hélio Higuchi
Date of Publication: 2014
Printed By: C&R Editorial