Saturday, April 10, 2010

Poland's President , Wife And Over 90 Dignitaries and Staff Killed In Plane Crash

Polish president Lech Kaczynski, his wife Maria, Solidarity leader Anna Walentynowicz,Poland's National Bank President Slawomir Skrzypek, Army chief of staff General Franciszek Gagor were among the dead after their plane crashed on approach to Smolensk airport in western Russia.

The president, his wife and the delegation were on their way to a memorial service for the victims of the 1940 Katyn Forest massacre in which thousands of Polish prisoners of war taken prisoner during the 1939 Soviet invasion of Poland were murdered by the Soviets. The dead were primarily military officers, but included intellectuals, policemen, and others the Soviets though might pose problems for their planned domination of the Soviet's slice of Poland, part of Stalin's deal with Hitler.

The Soviet Union and Russia continued to deny the massacres until 1990, when they finally admitted to the massacre as well as the subsequent cover-up. However, they have refused to classify the Katyn Massacre as a war crime as the Poles wanted, because that would have forced the prosecution of surviving perpetrators.some of whom were apparently fairly well connected.

Details of how the crash happened are fairly murky. The official story is that pilot error is to blame, after the pilot of the 20-year-old TU-154 reportedly turned down the opportunity to land at an alternative runway in thick fog. Witnesses said the pilot made three or four attempts to land and then failed to make it to the runway on the last attempt, but hit the treetops of some nearby woods, tearing the plane apart.

This strikes me as odd because a pilot good and experienced enough to be flying the presidential plane doesn't seem to be likely to have taken the risk of an attempted a landing in fogged in conditions. Could you imagine the pilot of Air Force One doing it with the president and First Lady aboard?

It's worth considering that Polish President Kaczynski was a firm US ally, at least until Obama essentially hung the Poles out to dry on missile defense.

It's also worth considering Russia's history of attempting to dominate Poland, which it has always considered part of its empire.

It would be one of history's ironies if the Polish leadership, on the way to hold a memorial for the victims of one Russian attempt to eliminate Polish leadership to make dominating Poland easier were the victims of a modern version of the Katyn Forest Massacre.

That bit of speculation aside, My friend Bill over at Le·gal In·sur·rec·tion wonders whether President Obama is going to attend the funeral for President Kaczynski and the other crash victims:

Undoubtedly, this will be a monumental event with dignitaries from around the world, and millions of people in the streets.

The statement issued by Obama today was appropriate.

Obama needs to attend the funeral for the leader of a nation which has fought beside us in Iraq and Afghanistan, and whose people have a special affinity for the United States because of our shared history of opposing communism.

I expect Obama to do the right thing as the President of this country. If he can fly to Copenhagen on short notice to try to win the Olympics for Chicago, he can fly to Warsaw to help bury a true friend of the United States.

I think it's far more likely Obama will palm the job off on Hillary or Joe Biden, but I'm certainly willing to be pleasantly surprised.

And for the resilient Polish people who have made numerous sacrifices for their freedom, my sincere condolences on this horrible, horrible tragedy.

UPDATE: Color me pleasantly surprised. According to the AP Robert Gibbs says Obama will attend the funeral.

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Anonymous said...

OK, so maybe I believe in conspiracy theories at times, but I think this is a little too convenient for Putin. He is now rid of the pro-US Polish gov't and even the oppostion candidate was pro-US. Those left in power in Poland tend to see Russia as their ally, for whatever reason. Coming on the heels of the upending of the pro-US gov't in Kyrzygstan for an anti-US gov't does give one pause. I do like to put all the dots together.
Remember Putin was and will always be KGB. He is pure unadultered evil, always was and always will be. By putting him in charge of the investigation is like putting the fox in charge of the hen house. But it did give me on heck of a chuckle, in a sort of "holy cow" sort of way.
It's scarier that we have such inept morons in the Obama administraiton dealing with this man. 2012 can't come soon enough, hopefully we will all be in one piece by then.

ace said...

This was not just an ordinary plane crash. I would not blame Russia for making the plane go down. Instead look at the mossad/Israel and the Marxist Robin Hood in the white house.

Freedom Fighter said...

The Mossad, Ace? Are you smoking something?

Or do you merely see Jooos under your bed when it gets late in the evening and you're feeling fearful?

Neither Israel or Obama (I assume that's whom you mean) had any rational reason to be involved with this whatsoever.

FYI, since Obama dialed out on Poland the Polish military have actually been buying drones and other armaments made in- wait for it-Israel.