Saturday, April 10, 2010

Sincerest Condolences

Perhaps pilots have different feelings about airplane crashes than do non-pilots. And I suspect that with the exception of the very many Americans of Polish descent, my feelings about Poland are perhaps warmer and stronger than many of my fellow countrymen. [The fact that I just tuned in CNN and Fox news who were running commercials seems to substantiate this belief].

I have been very fortunate to have not one but two extraordinarily warm and utterly pleasant visits to Poland, with some of my happiest travel memories ever.

The dimensions of the tragedy in Smolensk will take weeks or more to untangle, as the Russians are apparently sealing off the scene and limiting or totally curtailing information from journalists.

The irony of the event however, is beyond description. Tragic, utterly tragic irony.

My very sincerest sympathies to everyone affected by this event.

13 comments:

Fin said...

What is known is that the Polish equivalent of Airforce one was making it's fourth attempt to land at a military field with bad ground fog and not very sophisticated instrument landing system. Having failed three times, and with 80 or so VIPs sitting behind him and a schedule to meet, the pilot struck trees on his go-around. There were no survivors. The list of the passengers is basically a who's who of Poland's elite.

Dorrie said...

our news is obviously also reporting lots about it. It seems he (the president) once fired a pilot who refused to land in adverse condidtions, so that pressure goes on top of the weather conditions. (right,easy to always blame the pilot).

That final reports will be interesting....

Fin said...

I wonder whether it will take them a year to come up with the cause, like it does here.

Fin said...

It was a military flight to a military airport with what must be assumed to be the most highly qualified crews to be found.

The question I am curious about is whether they violated any of their own laws or regulations in loading basically the entire top echelon of their military into one plane, together with such a high ranking collection of civilians.

Time may tell.

wildstorm said...

Hi Fin. First of all, I'm adding you to my blogroll. I read you from time to time. This situation you described is tragic. I caught only a glimpse of it on the news.

Fin said...

It is the weekend, and it does not involve Obama or health care, so there may not be much coverage here.

Wizardress said...

I find it so tragic. I've been hearing a lot about it here in the news and also heard that the conditions were less than favorable. So many lives have been affected and my heart breaks for the families of those left behind to pick up the pieces.

Fin said...

Not just families, Wiz --- an entire country!

BTW, off to hear Mockingbirds day after tomorrow...YAY!!

BenB said...

I was curious about the same thing. The often - if not almost always - have the vice-President of the U.S. off in a different location than the President in case something happens to the President - a terror attack or whatever, the VP will be safe. We all know this, obviously - so curious as to what's going to come out in the wash after the investigation is complete. I don't wonder, though, if it's info that doesn't make their military shine in a positive light that much of it will be censored.
If you've ever watched ACI - Air Crash Investigation - a show that can be found on YouTube - it becomes evident as to why it takes so long for an American version of an investigation so long to complete. A notable exception was that of Sullenberger's crash that - they had all that information out pretty fast compared to most other investigations.

BenB said...

ROFL on the comment about Obama or healthcare, and I heartily agree with the sarcastic tones of that sentiment!

Fijufic said...

Horrific no doubt.

Chiang Guy said...

Truly a tragedy for Poland. This will certainly change the face of Polish politics for the next twenty years.

Fin said...

Subsequent translations have now denied that it was the 4th approach. A few posts have occurred which purport to be transcripts of Putin meeting with officials at the scene,and if accurate they show professionalism and good organizational skills at work.

The story that the President had fired a pilot who refused to make an unsafe landing has also been denied or refuted. One source states the pilot was given a medal.