Soviet Air Force General Service

- Aug 14, 2018-

The caps shown here were part of a general's service/everyday uniform. Although not authorized, photographs also show them being worn with field uniforms. The cap on the left was for a flight officer (which included operational staff) and on the right, for a non-flight officer such as a commander of a support or administration unit. Both caps have khaki crowns and azure bands and piping. They also both use gilt filigree cords looped over brass general buttons (although pictures also show that non-regulation black chinstraps were also worn by generals on occasion, whether by choice or dictated by availability of the gold cords is unknown. Generals in all armies have a little leeway in following regulations!).

The differences signifying flight and non-flight officers are just as obvious. The flight/operations general has a wing and star emblem embroidered in gilt wire onto a woolen backing and sewn to the crown. He also has an embroidered wreath surrounding his M43 general's cockade, which is also sewn as a "patch" onto the band (although the background on the M43 cockade of this cap from the site appears white, it is actually light azure). In contrast, the admittedly bleached out photograph on the right from simply has the M43 cockade pinned to the band with no other insignia. This was regulation for non-flight generals. Both visors are black painted fiberboard; while spade-shaped ones were most common in the 1940s, some generals apparently had a preference for the rounded ones (once again, the privileges of rank!)