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11-26-2007, 08:00 PM
The Gulag Study

(JCSD) U.S. - Russia
Joint Commission on POW/MIAs

"The Gulag Study"


The accompanying text represents a compilation of reports which assert that US Servicemen were held in Soviet camps and prisons during the Cold War. Prepared as a working document by the US side of the US-Russia Joint Commission on POW/MIAs, the reports collectively have become known as "the Gulag Study," a copy of which was submitted to the Commission's Russian membership in April 2000.

The study draws upon accounts from a wide range of sources, many of whom themselves claim to have been incarcerated in the Soviet Gulag system. In releasing the study, we caution against drawing conclusions about the factual accuracy from any single component. Judgments in that regard will be possible only after the Commission has had a chance to conduct a methodical inquiry of its own. It is with that objective in mind that the US side undertook the study in the first instance.

Given its status as a working document, the Gulag Study will presumably undergo changes as additional information is acquired and specific reports are further evaluated. To advance the process of validating individual accounts, the Commission expects to pursue a series of site visits intended to identify additional sources of information. In tandem with an active interview program, efforts are being made to intensify the search for historical documentation through a broad-based research initiative. Recent contact with archival repositories in the Komi Republic serves as a first step in establishing a diversified research program predicated on access to, and a careful review of, all relevant historical records throughout the Russian Federation.

In defining the Gulag Study's scope and content, we have concentrated on those accounts which make clear reference to American servicemen reportedly sighted in the Russian Republic of the former Soviet Union. Information about US civilian personnel or pertaining to any area of the former USSR other than Russia, will be pursued outside the Commission's bilateral framework.

Robert L. Jones
Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense)
(POW/Missing Personnel Affairs)

February 7, 2001 Report

Camps in the area of: Moscow

In 1947 at the inquiry prison in Potsdam, a Polish witness stayed in one cell together with a U.S. Army sergeant, reportedly a gunner. The witness believed he had probably unintentionally entered the Soviet zone in Berlin by a car and was arrested immediately. The source described the American as a sturdy fellow, whose father was a farmer. The American gave the source an overcoat. They spoke German, but both knew it very poorly. They met again at the Lubyanka prison in Moscow at the turn of 1948.

During a series of interviews in 1996, a Soviet veteran who lived in Minsk claimed to have seen a U.S. POW in May or June 1953. The POW was a Korean War F-86D pilot whose plane had been forced to land. The pilot landed his plane undamaged, was then captured, and his aircraft was taken to Moscow. The incident occurred in late Spring 1953. According to the witness--who served in An Dun, North Korea, from December 1952 through February 1954--the pilot was sent to Moscow the day after the forcedown, "because Stalin wanted to speak with him." The witness said that the pilot was interrogated by his commander, Colonel Ivan Nikolayevich Kozhedub. Upon capture, he believed the U.S. POW was not injured. He said that the U.S. POW depicted in a picture he saw was white, with light brown hair and blue or light brown eyes. He stated that the U.S. POW was about 5'7" tall, and had a 2 •" scar above the right eye. The witness said that the late General Vasiliy Kuzmich Sidorenkov had a picture of the American POW which he had seen when Sidorenkov showed it to him years ago, declaring, "that's our American." The witness revealed that this pilot later became an instructor and taught at the Monino Air Force Academy in Moscow from 1953-58. The U.S. POW did not speak Russian and had served at Monino under an assumed Russian name. He did not know the name, and could not recall any other details about the U.S. POW. The U.S. POW primarily taught air battle techniques and tactics, and assisted the Soviets in figuring out a U.S. radar sight (radio-lokatsionniy pritsel).

The Rest (http://www.aiipowmia.com/usg/jcsd2001_gulag.html)

01-06-2008, 11:14 AM
Whatever happened to the pilot, Capt. Troy Gordon Cope, after he was shot down in a dogfight above the Chinese border with North Korea? Had he been captured alive and taken with other downed American pilots to a Russian gulag? Was he still alive today?


The United States government finally provided an answer on Saturday. A Pentagon official in Beijing announced that human remains excavated last year from a site inside the Chinese border were those of Captain Cope. The remains, unearthed along with pieces of an airplane that struck nose first, have been tested at a government laboratory in Hawaii and will be returned to the family for burial with military honors in May.

NYTimes 2/27/05 (http://www.nytimes.com/2005/02/27/international/asia/27pow.html)