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Wikileaks – 'Russia tried to prevent Kaczynski landing in Smolensk'

PR dla Zagranicy
Peter Gentle 09.03.2012 13:41
According to a Wikileaks email, Russia refused landing permission to the doomed plane carrying President Kaczynski in April 2010, “to force him to miss a Katyn massacre memorial service.”


The email– released by the Wikileaks whistle blowing web site as part of its Global Intelligence Files series - shows a former KGB officer recruited by the Americans thought the Russians deliberately tried to stop President Kaczynski landing in Smolensk.

Smolensk air traffic control told the plane it was unsafe to land due to heavy fog, but the plane eventually tried to land at the airport in western Russian, however, killing all 96 on board.

But the secret email released by Wikileaks, sent by iphone to Reva Bhalla, director of analysis at the global intelligence company Stratfor Forecasting Inc, from Fred Burton, the company's vice-director of counter intelligence on 24 April 2010, quotes a former KGB agent, 'Comrade J'.

Comrade J told Stratfor, a company once described as a 'shadow CIA': “The Russians purposefully denied the aircraft the ability to land knowing that the Polish President would either force the pilot to land […] or the plane would return and not land at the location.”

Another Stratfor officer, Marko Papic, is also quoted as saying: “This was actually one of the theories that one of my contacts also gave me. But the intention was not to kill Kacynzki [sic] just make his life difficult by forcing him to land in Minsk and therefore miss the Katyn Massacre ceremonies set to begin in an hour from landing. But instead, the pilots tried to land anyways and crashed the flight.”

President Kaczynski was leading a party of military officers, politicians and family members of victims of the 1940 Katyn massacre to a memorial service in western Russia when the plane crashed on a foggy Saturday morning on 10 April 2010.

Earlier that week, Prime Minister Donald Tusk had been invited to an official Katyn remembrance service by the then Russian prime minister Vladimir Putin, in memory of over 20,000 Polish officers murdered by Stalin's security forces in 1940.

President Kaczynski - who had tense relations with the Kremlin ever since the Russian-Georgian war in 2008, when the then Polish president gave strong support to the Georgian government - was not invited to the official ceremony, so had organised his own service, three days later.

Comrade J

Comrade J is thought to be Sergei Tretyakov, a Russian foreign intelligence officer who defected to the US in 2000. He died in October 2010.

What 'Comrade J' - described in another email as being “the highest rankling Soviet defector in history” - suggested to the Stratfor intelligence officers was that Russia was being deliberately obstructive to President Kaczynski in not letting him land the plane in western Russia and so forcing him to another airport so he would be late for the Katyn remembrance service that morning.

The email released by Wikileaks will fuel conspiracy theories, which claim that the Smolensk air disaster was not simply an accident but part of a campaign of revenge against President Kaczynski and his opposition to the Russian war with Georgia and other issues where he took a strong stand against the Kremlin.

WikiLeaks began publishing The Global Intelligence Files, containing over five million e-mails hacked from the Texas headquartered "global intelligence" company Stratfor in February this year. (pg)

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