Few fighter pilots of any nation could claim nine victories in three combats.
Fewer still could claim seven in two days.
Barely anyone could claim to have at least three jets destroyed within the space of 30-40 seconds.
But Mohammad Mahmood Alam of Pakistan Air Force did it all in 1965 war!
Re-birth of Pakistan’s Record-holder Air Fighter as a Changed Man: Mohmammad M. Alam
The middle of the year 1965 was unquestionably the peak point of the Pakistan Air Force’s 40-year history. It brought into focus the fundamental character of this relentless air force when faced, for the first time, with a full scale confrontation with its number one enemy, the Indian Air Force.
Mohammad Mahmood Alam, who was born in 1935 in the state of Bihar, Western Bengal, is so far the top scorer fighter pilot of PAF. In the war of 1965, he shot down 9 Indian planes (5 in one sortie) and damaged another 2. On 6th September, 1965, during an aerial combat over enemy territory, Squadron Leader Mohammad Mahmood Alam in an F-86 Sabre Jet, shot down two enemy Hunter aircraft and damaged three others. For the exceptional flying skill and valor displayed by Squadron Leader Mohammad Mahmood Alam, he was awarded Sitara-i-Juraat [The Star of Courage]. On 7th September, 1965, Squadron Leader Alam is said to have destroyed five more enemy Hunter aircrafts in less than a minute , which remains a record till today. Overall he had nine kills and two damages to his credit.
Pakistan’s Fighter Ace
One of the fastest aces of all time was a participant in a short-lived border war between India and Pakistan in 1965. Few fighter pilots of any nation could claim nine victories in three combats. Fewer still could claim seven in two days. And it is doubtful that anyone besides Mohammad Alam of the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) can lay claim to shooting down four enemy planes in less then one minute. That fighting record should have assured an airman of Alam’s proficiency a brilliant military career, but Alam would give it all up as the consequence of a spiritual rebirth that set him on a collision course with many of his senior officers. Mohammad Alam’s wartime exploits gained him international acclaim, but his military career was marked by controversy…
Eye-witness to M. M. Alam’s Encounter with the IAF
“History has never been a particularly interesting subject for me, but on 7th September, 1965, I had the unique opportunity of seeing history being made. I shall not hesitate to accept that, ever since, my prejudices against history have weakened quite a bit…” narrates the Retired Wing Commander, M. Arif Iqbal (PAF). Read more about M. M. Alam’s courageous encounter with the Indian army’s fighter jets in 1965 war.
The Story of the Pakistan Air Force: A Saga of Courage and Honour
A brief review of The Story of the Pakistan Air Force: A Saga of Courage and Honour, a book of over 700 large-sized pages published by the Shaheen Foundation. This book gives a graphic account of the heroics of the PAF pilots in the eastern wing during the 1971 war when they were outnumbered ten to one. Covering the development of the force from August, 1947, when it only had a few Tempest aircraft, the book takes the reader up to 1987 when F-16s were hurtling down the runways to go up in a breathtaking climb in deadly pursuit of their doomed quarry.