Half the Polish government falls from the sky en route to commemorate massacre of Poles

How do you top a two week stretch that involves a twin subway bombing, a bloody revolution, the signing of a historic nuclear treaty, and the final reconciliation between Poland and Russia over the Katyn massacre?

Apparently, you let a plane carrying some of the most important people in the Polish government — including the Polish president — crash right near the site where over 20,000 of their compatriots were massacred by the Soviet secret police in 1940, the very site the Polish dignitaries were going to consecrate.

Which is what happened this morning.

This morning, a crappy, Soviet-era Tu-154 was headed from Warsaw for Smolensk (near the site of the massacre), but found that its ability to land was hampered by the fog. It tried to land again and again, with no success. On its fourth attempt, the plane grazed a tree, which ripped off its back section, and sent it hurtling into to the ground at 10:50 a.m. local time.

Every crew member died, as did all the passengers. Among them were the Polish President, Lech Kaczynski, his wife, the head of the National bank, the vice speakers of the Sejm and the Senate, the chief of staff, the head of national security, the Olympic committee head, the deputy defense minister, and a row of senators.

Vladimir Putin, newly reconciled with the Poles, said he would personally oversee the investigation.

Stranger than fiction, as they say.

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7 Responses to Half the Polish government falls from the sky en route to commemorate massacre of Poles

  1. richard1990 says:

    “This morning, a crappy, Soviet-era Tu-154 ”
    This particular plane that the Poles were flying on was made in 1990 and refurbished several years ago, updated with modern equipment etc. it was pilot era first and foremost.

    • Philipp Churilov says:

      If you consider en.Wikipedia.org a reliable source of information, it cites 66 crashes of Tu-154, roughly 3 of which are caused by mechanical failures mid-air (“2 cases prior to 2001” and one in the presented recent list).

      The majority of crashes origin from the human factor.

      Take care in the Unsafe-for-Journalist Moscow, the FSB hounds are watching you and their polonium is ready.

  2. mikepolitik says:

    I know Poland is a small country, but was the Tu-154 the official presidential aircraft?

    Very sad story to have a plane crash because of pilot error. There has to be more to the story than just fog and a tree.

    • jake brodsky says:

      Pilot Error is almost always a contributing cause at the very least. That’s not the whole story, though. The story is what lead to the pilot making the error in the first place, and what situations allowed that error to go unnoticed.

      Poor visibility may not have been the whole story here. The initial investigation is complete, it would be wise not to speculate.

      This is indeed very sad news.

  3. mikepolitik says:

    I am more happy to comment on this actual news.

    Everyone and their brother is on Taibbi’s nutsack over some moron that doesn’t matter (David Brux..his name doesn’t deserve correct spelling).

  4. Pingback: 10 politically significant air plane crashes - Michael Roston - Newsbroke - True/Slant

  5. Pingback: You’ve got to be kidding: Epic volcano eruption may delay Polish president’s burial - Julia Ioffe - The Moscow Diaries - True/Slant

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