In 1970, just off the coast of Martha’s Vineyard, Lithuanian sailor and would-be defector Simas Kudirka jumped off his Soviet vessel aboard a US coast guard cutter, asking for asylum.
An unprecedented, daring moment in Cold War history that gathered into a global political furore. On Thanksgiving Day, 1970, a Lithuanian sailor jumps from his Soviet ship onto an American coastguard boat, pleading for asylum. To his horror, the Americans return him to the Soviets and he is tried for treason.
This is just the start of an extraordinary story, which gathers momentum and twists through media outcry, public sleuthing and serendipity, reaching all the way up to the White House. Through eye-witness reports, rare archival footage and a dramatic first-person re-enactment by the now 90-year-old would-be defector himself, The Jump takes us on a gripping journey through the not-so-distant past of Soviet/US diplomatic relations.