Heavy Lifting

U.S. Ambassador to Moscow ROBERT STRAUSS has jumped into a dispute over Russian-built Kamov and Mil helicopters, by lobbying the Bush Administration on their behalf. The powerful Russian choppers can outlift the best U.S. helicopters and are being offered to American oil and logging firms at half price. U.S. manufacturers are livid because Strauss wants the FAA to waive the costly and time-consuming U.S. commercial-certification process for the Russian competition. If the FAA goes along with Strauss, the heavy lifters may start hauling timber in Alaska this summer.

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