American Elephants

A Tragic Accident Takes the Lives of Polish Leaders. by The Elephant's Child
April 10, 2010, 7:33 pm
Filed under: News | Tags: , ,

Polish President Lech Kaczynski was flying with his wife from Warsaw to Smolensk for a ceremony to commemorate the loss of the cream of Poland’s officer corps in the Katyn Forest massacre in 1940. The plane crashed, killing all 97 aboard.

The Tupolev Tu-154 clipped the trees and went down in fog near the Smolensk airport.  There were no survivors. Those killed included the governor of Poland’s central bank and many senior officers in the armed forces.

After the Russian invasion of Poland in World War II, some 22,000  prisoners of war were executed  in the Katyn Forest.   Those executed were mostly Polish officers, police officers, public servants and intellectuals who were shot on Stalin’s orders and buried in mass graves.

Families of those killed at Katyn were also on board the plane.  Poland has declared a week of national mourning as citizens flocked to lay flowers and light candles outside the Presidential Palace in Warsaw.


David Satter writing in the Corner tells the story behind this tragic accident.  It’s a complicated and tragic story, and attempts to change or hide history don’t always work.  The truth, as they say, will out.

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