Where did the Catalina Affair take place

http://www.sina.com.cn 2007年02月02日 16:00  英语周报大学版

Where did the‘Catalina Affair’ take place?


  One of the enduring mysteries of the Cold War was an incident that occurred on the Baltic Sea in 1952. On June 13, an unarmed Swedish DC-3, flying over internationa waters, disappeared after radioing that it was under attack. When the plane failed to return, two Swedish Catalina seaplanes were dispatched to search for the missing craft.

  As the Catalinas combed the waters between Gotland Island and the coast of Estonia, they accidentally wandered into Soviet airspace. The seaplanes were attacked by two Soviet MiGs over international waters. The MiGs shot down one of the flying boats, forcing it to ditch and wounding the pilot. The crew survived, and was rescued by a German ship in the area.

  For the next 40 years diplomatic relations between the two countries were soured by what came to be known as the “Catalina Affair.” Family members of the eight crewmen lost on the DC-3 pressured the Swedish government for answers about the plane and its mission.

  Finally, in 1991, Sweden — officially neutral during the Cold War — admitted that the plane had been on a spy mission for Great Britain and the United States. That admission prompted a former Soviet pilot to admit to a Swedish diplomat that he had shot down the plane.

  In 2003, after five years of searching, underwater explorers found the DC-3 in about 400 feet (122 meters) of water, half-buried in sand. The plane, intact and in remarkably good condition, is to be salvaged by the Swedish military and its crew finally laid to rest.