A Russian plane crash killed 44 of 52 aboard a Tu-134 today. While the age of the plane was questioned, some experts also point to need for better training and maintenance at smaller carriers.
Defense Secretary Gates and his Russian counterpart will sit down for high-level talks Thursday. US plans for antimissile deployments are spurring threats that Russia might withdraw from the New START nuclear treaty.
Russia's Dmitry Medvedev and Poland's Bronislaw Komorowski met on the one-year anniversary of a plane crash that killed Poland's former president en route to Russia. A probe of the crash has sparked controversy.
The Polish president plane crash this weekend will intensify scrutiny of the Tupolev Tu-154, a Russian-made jet that has been involved in several high-profile crashes in recent years.