SECRETS IN A FLIGHT MANIFEST| The Making of a Traitor
In December 2018 when I first made contact with helicopter maker Kazan, I was not certain what I was going to nd. Kazan had been building helicopters, designed at its Mil Moscow plant, since 1961, three decades prior to the fall of the Soviet Union. For two weeks, I waited for their staff to get back to me and when they did, it was via a phone call. And the conversation was not pleasant because of the nature of what I needed.
According to Kazan, The Ugandan People’s Defense Force (UPDF) did not buy the helicopter from them. The M1-7 12 which the Ugandans would later tag as 605 was procured from Russian Helicopters, a secondary market operator based in Bolshaya Pionerskaya, an inner suburb of Moscow. The painstaking quest went on with no breakthrough for another two months.
In February 2019, I nally got an email from Stanislav Golubev, a specialist at the Russian Helicopters who had been with the company for more than 21
years. Golubev answered my questions by providing detailed seating arrangement in John Garang’s fated MI-172 605 (see Addendum A).
The purpose of this was to establish clarity, whether someone could sneak in the chopper without being seen, which Golubev dismissed as ”impossible unless done deliberately”, besides, there are no corners in the plane because of its interior layout. It could not happen and it did not happen. The enemy was not in the helicopter. He was on the ground. But before we get to the bottom of it, we will first provide a prelude and logical anchors to what has become an issue of dying interest and a problem many are too wary to pursue.
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