Cold War American Spy Francis Gary Powers

About the Cold War era American spy Francis Gary Powers, history and biography of his Russian spying.

Francis Gary Powers. American. Worked for: U.S. during Cold War.

Francis Gary Powers was shot down on May 1, 1960, while flying an American U-2 jet on a spy mission over Russia. He was Russia's 1st proof that reconnaissance flights were being authorized by the U.S., and the Russian authorities used the "U-2 incident" to break up the Peace Conference in Paris. It is possible that certain U.S. military leaders deployed Powers purposely to sabotage the peace talks which Eisenhower himself acutely desired. Although he was sentenced to 3 years in jail and 7 years in a work camp, Powers was returned in a prisoner exchange for Colonel Abel. After that he lived in Los Angeles and worked as a helicopter pilot for a local radio station, giving traffic reports from atop the freeways.

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