Flying (part #2)

A Canadian Forces CF-18 sits in its hangar at the air base in Inuvik, Northwest Territories. (The Canadian Press/Tom Hanson)

A Canadian Forces CF-18 sits in its hangar at the air base in Inuvik, Northwest Territories. (The Canadian Press/Tom Hanson)

Listen

The second and the final episode of the IDEAS series on flying.

It looks at the use of airplanes in World Wars.

 

On December 17, 1903 in Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina, Orville and Wilbur Wright launched their first successful piloted flying machine. That was more than one hundred years ago. Since then, airplanes have unquestionably made the world a smaller place.

 

Planes have made travelling easier and faster. We use them to transport cargo, to spray crops, to douse forest fires and to transport medical supplies and organs. But we also use planes for a more sinister purpose.

 

Since the First World War, airplanes have been used in combat.  First in reconnaissance missions, then as fighters and bombers.

 

By World War II, the plane became a key soldier in battle. The force of the German Luftwaffe, paratroopers dropping from the sky on D-Day, the attack on Pearl Harbor and dropping the first two atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki were all made possible by the dream achieved by the Wright Brothers in a cold, wet field in North Carolina.

 

Hear part two of 'Flying', produced by Marilyn Powell for the CBC Radio documentary program IDEAS.  It's a winner of the Major Armstrong Award.

 

 

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