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The Lockheed U-2 is probably the best known spy-aircraft ever, famous for the exploits of its pilots over or near hostile territories. Indeed, the bold and provocative operations flown by the CIA-operated Lockheed U-2 reconnaissance aircraft over the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics have epitomized the rivalry between the United States of America and the Soviet Union during the early to middle Cold War period. Much has been published about some of the overflights in question - especially the one on 1 May 1960, that ended with the downing of the US pilot Garry Powers.