The Air: Piracy Above, Politics Below

As the Polish LOT airliner approached East Berlin on a flight out of Warsaw, two young East Germans walked into the crew cabin. One of them clubbed the flight engineer with his gun butt. The other pressed his revolver against Pilot Ryszard Dabrowski's neck and told him to head for West Berlin. Two Soviet MIGs screamed up alongside the IIyushin-18 turboprop, but not even their buzzing could dissuade the hijackers. When the plane landed at Tegel Airport in the French sector of West Berlin, they handed over passports and guns (which turned...

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