U.S. World War II Bomber Found in Siberia
An American military aircraft lost 71 years ago over western Siberia was discovered in the taiga, Russian environmentalists said.
A Douglas A-20 Havoc (DB-7) was lost in 1943 while en route to the Eastern Front from Alaska over the ALSIB (Alaska-Siberia) air ferry route.
It was one of 3,400 DB-7s provided to the Red Army by the U.S. as part of the World War II-era lend-lease program.
The Soviet Union received more than $11 billion worth of supplies and military equipment from its U.S. ally over the course of the war.
The wreckage of the lost DB-7 was initially discovered by a taiga hunter in 1966, but after leaving the aircraft, he was unable to retrace his steps in order to find it again.
The search continued for 48 more years until the bomber was finally discovered in the Kuznetsky Alatau wildlife reserve, according to the reserve's official site.
The wreckage is resting on the slopes of the Zelyonaya mountain in Kemerovo region, the report said Monday.
It remained unclear what caused the crash. No hostilities took place in Siberia, but the heavily loaded bomber could have failed to fly over the mountain in cloudy weather, the report said.
Aircraft incoming from Alaska were manned by Soviet crews. The DB-7 had a crew of four, whose names remain unknown to this day.
However, the plane was identified by its personal number — F216 — which should allow military historians to establish the pilots' identities, the report said.