Transport: 63 Hours 17 Minutes

When Russia established a base at the North Pole last month (TIME, May 31 & June 14), many were skeptical about the Soviet's announced intention of inaugurating a Moscow-San Francisco airline. Last week skeptics were confounded when a Russian plane nonchalantly flew non-stop from Moscow to the U. S. via the North Pole.

The plane was a three-year-old ANT-25 (the initials for Designer A. N. Tupoleff) monoplane with one engine, 112 ft. wingspread. To fly it Dictator Stalin chose, not Sigismund Levanevsky as announced, but three other "Heroes of the Soviet Union"—Pilot Valeri Pavlovitch...

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