textbook aerial insertion

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Senior Member
Persian - Shiraz
Hi! Dear all!
What is the exact meaning of "textbook aerial insertion" in the following passage?
"The only successful aspect of this initiative, which achieved absolutely nothing in operational terms, was the textbook aerial insertion"
The passage is about a covert operation of Nazi Regime in Persia during World War II which was performed very badly without any result. The meaning of "textbook", as a noun or adjective, is ambiguous for me in the context.
It is from this book:
Nazi Secret Warfare
in Occupied Persia (Iran)
The Failure of the German Intelligence
Services, 1939–45
Adrian O’Sullivan
Thanks very much.
  • grassy

    Senior Member
    It seems to be an adjective there meaning "the kind of aerial insertion one could learn about in a textbook; the typical aerial insertion".


    Senior Member
    British English
    It means that the aerial insertion was performed perfectly, without error. As grassy suggests, in the manner laid down in a textbook. It does not mean "typical"; people typically make mistakes.


    Senior Member
    English - England
    I agree with Andygc in the context of this example. However "textbook" does not always mean "without error". As discussed in this previous thread, we can talk about a textbook mistake.

    Textbooks give examples in order to supplement their description of theory. Usually these show what happens when things are carried out perfectly and what typically happens when things go wrong. A "textbook aerial insertion" is an aerial insertion done as it would be described in a textbook. In this case the insertion is done in an exemplary way.
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