Plane carrying Polish leader Lech Kaczynski, his wife and other officials crashes while landing in Russia
The governor of the Smolensk region, where the crash took place about 11 a.m. (0700 GMT), said no one survived.
"The Polish presidential plane did not make it to the runway while landing. Tentative findings indicate that it hit the treetops and fell apart," Sergei Anufriev said on state news channel Rossiya-24. "Nobody has survived the disaster."
The Polish foreign ministry confirmed that Kaczynski and his wife were aboard the plane.
The head of Russia's top investigative body, Sergei Markin, said there were a total of 132 people on the plane, a (Russian) Tu-154.
Kaczynski was flying to Russia for events marking the 70th anniversary of the massacre of thousands of Polish officers by Soviet secret police in Katyn and elsewhere during World War II.
Update: 7:04AM CST
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has just announced that he will setup a Government Commission to investigate the crash of Polish President Lech Kaczynski’s plane, which occurred moments before it was scheduled to land.
Heading up the “Government Commission” will be none other than …. wait for it …. Vladimir Putin.
Lech Kaczynski was no friend of Putin, which will tell us much about the “results” of this “investigation.”
Hate to brag on myself, but I nailed it 90 minutes ago with my original thoughts below…..
Editors Note: Those of you who’ve read my blog for awhile know I’m no conspiracy theorist, so I went and looked up the safety record of the TU-154 and discovered some things that alarmed me:
- The majority of these planes were built during the Communist Era of the USSR, and are in the 30-40 year old range. This means they’re operating at the limits of their operating potential, meaning everything has a lifespan.
- The Tu-154 still comprises the majority of the former eastern Communist Block’s airline fleet, including that of Russia itself.
- The Tu-154 is banned from flying into, and landing in several European countries due to known and unspecified safety deficiencies.
- In the past few years, Tu-154’s flown by post Soviet era countries have gone down for a number of reasons including terrorist attack, air traffic mistakes, “accidental shoot downs” and a myriad of other “unspecified reasons.”
- Also in the past few years, of all airline incidents in the former Communist block, the Tu-154 accounts for 10% of all crashes and mishaps, that’s a highly disproportionate number.
While Russian “Officials” say it’s too soon to pinpoint the cause of the crash, I have what I believe is a simple question: Given Russia’s (and Vladimir Putin’s) desires to re-constitute the former Communist block, is it really a coincidence that a plane carrying more than 100 Government Officials from Poland crashed while landing in Russia?
Polish President Lech Kaczynski was an ardent anti-Communist and outspoken friend of the United States. He was harshly critical of Barack Obama’s “decision” to rescind on America’s promise to deploy the missile defense system in Poland.
This morning America lost a very good friend in the former Communist block, and Poland unfortunately has taken a step back towards Soviet style Communism. Kaczynski was seeking a second term against Parliament speaker Bronislaw Komorowski, the candidate of Tusks’ governing Civic Platform party, which has Communist leanings.
Again, I’m no conspiracy theorist, but this seems to fit a pattern of what happens to Putin’s “enemies” and political opponents, and is well too timed to cause turmoil in Polands upcoming elections, potentially returning the country to the path of Communism.
Why Are Major U.S. Banks Buying U.S. Treasuries?
And Why Aren’t They Lending To Small Businesses?
An analysis by a primary dealer in the U.S. Treasuries market shows that domestic banks could account for a large increase in direct bidders for government debt.
The presence of direct bidders, one of three main categories of participants at Treasury auctions, has increased during recent auctions of securities.
Primary dealers, the banks and investment firms (That’s Wall Street, folks!) authorized to deal directly with the government and help the Federal Reserve carry out monetary policy, have fretted over the unpredictability of the direct bid, as well as the paucity of information on the identity of the bidders.
A report from Nomura Securities analyzing the Treasury Department's investor allotments and auction data theorizes that domestic banks account for part of the increase in direct bidders.
"With banks still reluctant to lend and the saving rate on the rise, bank assets have been shifting from loans to securities, benefiting from the steep curve," wrote George Goncalves, a fixed income strategist at Nomura.
Treasury data shows banks increased their purchases of longer-dated Treasuries just as the percentage of direct bidders began to increase.
The department, which is aware of the identities of bidders but does not disseminate the information, welcomes the added participation in auctions as the government continues to issue new debt at a breakneck pace.
Editors Note: Let me de-geek the banking speak for you since I happen to work in the banking industry, albeit not at a Wall Street firm.
First, large U.S. Banks have taken “hits” from the Obama Administration for not lending money to small businesses that need credit and cash flow to stay in operation, and consumers thus causing the economy to further collapse. If small businesses cannot get credit, they can’t expand or hire. If consumers cannot get credit, they don’t spend if they don’t have the cash on hand. In large measure, this holds back our economy as 70% of all spending is consumer driven.
Second, the U.S. Government is openly welcoming large U.S. Banks (and by the way, Wall Street Investment Firms/Banks that it blames for the financial crisis in the first place) buying U.S. Treasuries as the Obama Administration continues to print money to pay for its socialist programs.
Third, the large U.S. Banks that Obama is blaming for not lending money are not only funding Obama’s socialist programs – which he needs them to do - are making between 3% – 3.5% on their return for buying those Treasuries that fund Obama’s socialist agenda!
Now ask yourself this question: If the Banks are going to make a safe 3% to 3.5% return on their investment with no risk, just why in the world would they incur any risk at all by lending to small businesses and consumers in a weak economy?
If you haven’t figured it out by now, let me explain it to you: Obama’s wild spending spree has caused this problem and that he’s deferring the blame for a problem he largely helped to create on the very institutions he needs to fund his socialist programs. By doing so, he’s further hurting our economy, driving up unemployment, and fast-tracking this country to economic ruin. At the same time, yet another major transfer of wealth is actually being given to large U.S. banks and Wall Street investment firms in what will ultimately be a failed attempt to stave off economic ruin. Incurring all this debt with no way to pay it back – whether to the Chinese, our own banks, Wall Street or the Fed Reserve – ultimately leads to an economic implosion like nothing this Country has ever seen.
Ronald Reagan once said, Government is often the cause of a problem, and never the solution for it. Clearly we have a case of that here.
Stupak “Retires” From House
Claims Tea Party Didn’t Influence Decision
Dear Mr. Stupak, you lied to the American People when you said that you’d never back a “health care reform bill” that contained taxpayer funding for abortion. You lied to the American people about your principles and convictions. You lied to the American people about being pro-life.
Why should we believe you know when you say that the Tea Party Movement in Michigan didn’t influence your decision to retire from the House of Representatives rather than face the voters of your district? The fact is this: you’re lying Mr. Stupak, and here’s the proof.
Your Republican opponent Dr. Dan Benishek received just over $250,000 in donations the day you caved and announced your vote in favor of ObamaCare.
At the same time, support for Benishek’s campaign surged so much, it was registering a new volunteer every 30 seconds his campaign office was open. That support continues to this day.
The Tea Party movement sponsored some $250,000 in television ads opposing your re-election once you announced your traitorous vote against the unborn. You were no longer able to hide your betrayal of the unborn, or your self-professed Conservative principles.
Support across Michigan’s 1st Congressional District, especially across the Upper Penninsula cratered to less than 20% within the week of your betrayal.
Fact is Bart, you knew you couldn’t win again, and that’s why you’re dropping out. Without the eastern Upper Penninsula and down to Saginaw Bay, you were toast and you know it.
As far as this writer is concerned, good riddance you pro-life traitor. Each and every child who’s aborted from this point forward has you to thank, and their blood is on your hands, Mr. Stupak.
Live with that.