British expert calls for further investigation of Smolensk aircraft crash that killed Polish President and all 96 passengers on board - Reports the Brussels Times
SCND July 28, 2015
On April 10, 2010, a Polish aircraft crashed outside Smolensk, Russia, killing all 96 on board, incl. the Polish president and his wife and high-ranking officials. A well-known British air crash expert, Frank Taylor, has recently carried out a review of the official investigations and found several omissions and deficiencies.
The people on board the Polish aircraft were en route from Warsaw to attend an event marking the 70th anniversary of the Katyn massacre. The Katyn forest west of Smolensk in Russia was the site of a mass killing of Polish officers by the Soviet security service during the Second World War.
In his preliminary review, Taylor states that the purposes of an accident investigation are to establish the causes of the accident and of the injuries to those on board so that safety recommendations may be made both to help prevent future accidents and to improve the chances of survival of crew and passengers.
“I would suggest that although the reports appear to offer a plausible explanation for the crash there were serious deficiencies in the way the investigation was handled, including omissions and failures to explain a variety of factors that might well affect the final conclusions,” Frank summaries his review.
He calls now for a further investigation covering all aspects of the crash: “The reporting and probably the investigation of the crashworthiness and survival aspects of the accident were superficial and well short of international standards.”
Satellite images suggest that some items of wreckage were moved during the day of the accident or the day after. Frank has not found an explanation for this.
“The description and analysis of the wreckage does not appear to explain some unusual damage to the aircraft,” Frank continues. “There have been reports that not all wreckage was cleared from the accident site, some being found some six months after the accident. Such lack of care is unacceptable on many counts.”
Russia has until now refused to return the wreckage and black boxes to Poland.
According to The Federation of Katyn Families – which organizes relatives of the victims in the Katyn massacre –a team of archeologists recovered thousands of aircraft and body fragments six months after the crash.
The Federation is critical against the former Prime Minister of Poland - now President of the European Commission - Donald Tusk for his rejection of relatives’ calls for a more transparent investigation of the crash. They hope that this will change after the recommendation of the British expert to resume the investigation.
The trip to Smolensk was expected to highlight Russia finally admitting culpability in the massacre, after long having blamed it on the Germans, an atrocity they had tried to conceal for over 70 years.
As for the reception committee, it had different ideas. Putin wasn’t looking forward to such an occasion. Into this poisonous reception brew was President Kaczynski’s well-known public criticism of Moscow and Putin, a habit that has ended the lives of others within Russia – and abroad. A few discouraging Russian requirements – that Kaczynski could not attend in any official capacity – did not halt the Poles. Kaczynski would go anyway on non-official, “personal” business. To Russians, such a distinction would be meaningless, not lessening the possible international excoriation of such an event. A problem ripe for a modern, Russian solution: a tragic, ‘natural’ accident.
Remigiusz Mus, the flight engineer on Yak-40 whose landing immediately preceded PLF 101 and whose testimony implicated the Russian flight controllers, died of suicide.
This rounds out the death of the entirety of key witnesses whose testimonies could prove that the flight controllers bore at least partial responsibility for the mysterious crash that killed the Polish President Lech Kaczynski and 95 others near Smolensk, Russia, on April 10, 2010.
Suicide. So says the Polish Prosecutors office under the administration of Donald Tusk, Bronislaw Komorowski, and the Civic Platform party (Platforma Obywatelska, PO) - the people who came out on top following the disaster of Flight PLF 101. The position of the Prosecutors office is that the autopsy indicated death by hanging with no defensive wounds and and alcohol level of one permille (.01%).
General Konstantin Anatolyevich Morev, chief of the Federal Security Services (FSB), successor to KGB, office in Tver, who interviewed the Russian flight controllers, died at the end of August 2011. His body was found in his office. The official cause of death was a self-inflicted gunshot wound from his service revolver.
Not a single member of the Special 36th Aviation Transportation Regiment who testified before the Poland’s Military Prosecutor’s office said anything disparaging about the crew of the TU-154 or General Andrzej Błasik. To the contrary, the sworn testimonies of the deposed airmen praised the late Air Force commander and the crew for their professionalism.
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