On May 12, 2016, the new Polish government presented a report on the state of the country in the Polish Parliament. This day-long presentation given by key ministers from the Cabinet of Prime Minister Szydlo focused mainly on the general audit of the ministries operations under the previous government. Information with respect to the Smolensk crash of April 10, 2010, in Russia, was presented, among others, by the current head of the secret services Mariusz Kaminski.
Not surprisingly, several shocking pieces of information related to the Smolensk crash from the period 2010-2015 were revealed. They all fall into three categories: total lack of interest of the Polish secret services about the causes and circumstances of the Smolensk crash, obstruction of the investigation and hiding evidence, and illegal covert operations against journalist and bloggers skeptical about the Russian version of the Smolensk crash.
No involvement in the investigation
Minister Kaminski gave several alarming examples of the total lack of interest of the Polish secret services in the investigation of the Smolensk crash. The most shocking example of this phenomenon is the handling of a tip from a Russian citizen. One month after the crash, on May 10, 2010, a Russian citizen came to the Polish embassy in Moscow claiming that according to information he can share the Smolensk crash could have been the result of a terrorist act. This person passed his personal and contact information to the staff of the Polish embassy. Without any attempt to evaluate the information offered by the Russian man, the Internal Security Agency (Polish: ABW) decided to ignore this tip and passed personal information about this person to the Russian Federal Security Service. Currently, the fate of this person is unknown.
Hiding the evidence
Two days after Smolensk crash, on April12, 2010, American services provided high-resolution satellite images of the crash site. Those photos are important as we know now that several parts of the airplane were moved on the crash site in order to give the impression that the crash site is much smaller than in fact it was. Important satellite images were provided to the Polish Internal Security Agency and immediately disappeared without any trace for 10 months. The Internal Security Agency never informed neither the Smolensk investigation committee nor the prosecutors even about existence of this evidence. Eventually, the American side informed directly Polish prosecutors about the fact that satellite images were provided to the Polish side. Prosecutors obtained those images only after direct demands directed to the Internal Security Agency and with a substantial delay.
Illegal surveilance operations against journalist and bloggers
The total lack of interest of the Polish secret services about the cause of the Smolensk crash stood in direct contrast to the great interest of these services in the journalists and scientists who challenged the Russian story. The Internal Security Agency undertook illegal operations targeting journalists and bloggers skeptical of the Russian investigation of the Smolensk crash. In total, 52 journalists from main media along with several bloggers from Salon24 blog platform were illegally monitored. In addition, a catholic priest from Warsaw, Fr. Stanislaw Malkowski, was a subject of illegal operations for his involvement in prayers for victims of the Smolensk crash.
In this gloomy picture there is a good news. Soon after the new Polish government was formed after October 2015 parliamentary elections, all bosses of the Internal Security Agency were fired. Now, criminal investigation has been launched to establish their responsibility in aforementioned matters.
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Already during the first night of the crash, the Russians were removing the most important pieces of evidence from the crash site, that is, the remains of the Polish President’s Tupolev, TU-154M. Parts of the aircraft were transported away without any prior planning, and some of them were purposefully destroyed. Read more here
"Russian Image Management"
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.
World-renowned forensic pathologist goes on the record: "I have been doing autopsies for 50 years, and I've investigated more than fifteen, twenty airplane crashes […] I've been in countries all over the world where families think that the government is hiding something. Whether it is Zimbabwe or Israel, or Philippines, the government may not like an outside person checking to make sure they got it right. [But,] they never interfered with that. The family, the next of kin, always has the right to do what the wishes of the family are. In the 21st century, the body of the dead person no longer belongs to the state. It belongs to the family. So, it is unusual - something that I have never experienced before - where the government [of Poland] has not permitted the famil[ies]" to conduct independent forensic examinations of their loved ones' remains [...] I've never heard of a body coming back to a country and the family being unable to open up a casket. I've never heard of the family not being able to get an autopsy… Read more here
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