S. Eugene (Gene) Poteat is a retired senior CIA Scientific Intelligence Officer. He is currently president of the Association of Former Intelligence Officers (AFIO). Gene is an engineer with a life-long interest in aviation.
He holds a Master’s degree from the Institute of World Politics, where he teaches the role science and technology plays in nations’ national security. His career in intelligence included work with U-2 and SR-71 class of aircraft and various space and naval reconnaissance systems.
His CIA assignments included the Directorate of Science and Technology, the National Reconnaissance Office, Technical Director of the Navy's Special Programs Office and Executive Director of the Intelligence Research and Development Council.
"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.
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