CIA Documents Show US Never Believed Gary Powers was Shot Down

Fifty years ago today, in a full-body pressure suit and helmet, Powers was slammed forward against the canopy of his U2 spyplane 70,000ft above central Russia by a Soviet surface-to-air missile exploding close behind him. The blast wave dismembered the plane, tearing off first its tail section and then its wings, but leaving its pilot miraculously unhurt.

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