Ukrainian Aircraft Exec Fired Over “Failing to Save World’s Largest Plane”, the Antonov An-225 – Serhiy Bychkov, the director of the Ukrainian aircraft manufacturing company Antonov, has been fired after failing to save the world’s largest plane from being destroyed by Russian soldiers this week.
Bychkov is accused of having ties with Russia and has also faced accusations that his ties to the country led to the destruction of the plane.
In a statement, Ukrainian conglomerate Ukroboronprom said that Bychkov had been removed from his position.
“On March 29, Ukroboronprom removed Serhiy Bychkov from his office of General Director of the Antonov State Enterprise, which is part of the State Concern,” the statement reads. “The reason for the dismissal was an official investigation into verification of certain facts published in the media.
The conglomerate also said that its general director Yuriy Husyev had appealed to law enforcement for assistance, and that Ukroboronprom is also assisting the Ukrainian Security Service in “elucidating the events of possible violations.”
Dmytro Antonov, a pilot whose name is purely coincidental, told the press that an appeal was made to top management on January 26 to move all aircraft, personnel, and spare parts to Leipzig in anticipation of a Russian invasion.
“All aircraft, personnel and spare parts should have been brought to safety in Leipzig. There was no decision as of 23rd February,” Antonov said.
The pilot also insisted that claims that the aircraft was not moved because it could not fly are wrong.
“I flew with her on the 5th of February, after that, her engines were services. On the evening of 23rd of February, she was ready to fly to Leipzig with 70 tons of fuel,” he said.
Antonov An-225 – Russians Destroy World’s Largest Airplane
As Russians retreated from Hostomel on March 31, including the Hostomel airport that is also home to the Antonov aircraft manufacturing company, troops purposely destroyed the Antonov An-225 plane – the largest transport aircraft on the planet.
Photographs of the destroyed plane appeared on social media late on Friday, showing the plane almost entirely destroyed, with little other than its wing left somewhat intact. The hangar remains standing but was seriously damaged in the attack.
— Ukraine Alert?? (@alert_ukraine) April 1, 2022
The Antonov An-225 “Mriya,” which means “dream” in Ukrainian, was a historic technological achievement for the aircraft manufacturing industry. Even at 33 years old, the plane could transport as much as 250 tons of cargo a distance of up to 4,000km in just five hours.
The plane famously carried the Soviet space shuttle “Buran,” set more than 100 world records for speed and altitude, and half a dozen world records for flying heavy cargo between Prague and Uzbekistan.
It even had an international fanbase, many of whom took to the Internet to express their sadness over its destruction.
Jack Buckby is a British author, counter-extremism researcher, and journalist based in New York. Reporting on the U.K., Europe, and the U.S., he works to analyze and understand left-wing and right-wing radicalization, and reports on Western governments’ approaches to the pressing issues of today. His books and research papers explore these themes and propose pragmatic solutions to our increasingly polarized society.