Photo of the Week
September 23, 2001

  Northrop A-17's patrolling the Pacific entrance of the Panama Canal prior to WWII.  These photos came from a 1934 - 1936 era collection with most of the photos coming from Albrook.  This group appears to be doing a fly-by of a passenger liner.  Taboga can be seen in the distance.

Below is a color photo that is titled "A-17's over Rio Hato Gunnery Camp.  This group of aircraft actually look more like the A-17A type.

Defense of the Panama Canal has been a extremely crucial mission since the Canal was built.  Considering the current events in this world, who is defending it today?

Photos provided by Mr. Vicente Pascual 

The Northrop A-17 and A-17A series of single-engine attack bombers were the backbone of the United States Army Air Corp's (USAAC) attack aircraft strength during the late 1930s. The A-17 was well-armed, had a good performance, was reliable and dependable, and was widely exported. Although a fairly advanced design when it first appeared, the A-17 was rapidly eclipsed by advancing technology and soon became obsolescent. Even before American entry into the Second World War, the A-17 had been taken out of front-line service with the USAAC and largely relegated to training roles. It saw no combat in American colors, but its export versions did see some action.

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