On his 95-acre Virginian farm, American Oliver Powers, 55 year-old father of Francis Power - U.
Mr. Oliver Powers Sof
Then he said (SOF): "I'm sorry to know the boy's been captured by those people and we'll be thankful to get him back. He was always a good boy. I care to believe he'll be sent back home. He was not doing what he's been accused of. He was a test pilot."
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Background: On his 95-acre Virginian farm, American Oliver Powers, 55 year-old father of Francis Power - U.S. pilot of the U2 "spy plane" captured by the USSR May 1 - told reporters he expected his son would be released. Because Soviet Premier Khruschev was a former miner and because he, Oliver Powers, had spent a large part of his life hewing coal, he was sure that the Russian leader would allow his son to return to the U.S.
The Soviet Prime Minister said Powers was in good health after his plane was destroyed 12 miles up by a Russian rocket. Khruschev told the Supreme Soviet, Powers was an aerial spy and Powers had confessed it. In the U.S. after several days of hesitation the Government admitted Powers had been on an "information gathering flight over Russian territory.
U.S. officials by May 9 sounded less apologetic and warned. U.S. planes might still be flying over the USSR. Secretary of State Herter said the U.S. would be derelict to its responsibility if it did not try to guard against a Russian surprise attack. The U2 incident need not damage the prospects for a Summit (a remark reiterated by Mr. Khruschev the same day) but rather should underline the need for safeguards for the Russians "by their secrecy had made spying essential."
Soviet Defence Minister Malinovsky in Moscow warned all countries, against allowing their bases to be used for "piratical U.S. flights - we shall take measures that will leave nothing of your aerodromes," he said.