Tag Archives: Donetsk

Who is guilty?

This is a question we all seem to know, when we hear the words MH-117 and Ukraine. However, is that position a given fact? You see, we all seem to blame and to some extent I also blamed, but it seems to me that I am the only one who is asking the questions that need answering.

Let’s take a look at the events and the sides.

Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 crashed on July 17th 2014. The first fact given and already it is an incorrect one. MH-117 was shot out of the sky. Let’s not beat around the bush, it was shot down with advanced technology. No shoulder held equipment could have done this; it required serious hardware to achieve this. It happened over Donetsk, an area under control of pro-Russian separatists. The only information that seems correct is that this was done by pro-Russian separatists. After this, the press takes a gander and accusations are flying all over the place, several of them pretty wild ones.

The first issue is found here: Evidence from open sources indicated that separatists in Ukraine were in control of a BUK missile launcher on 17 July and transported it from Donetsk to Snizhne (at http://www.kyivpost.com/content/ukraine/journalists-find-solid-russian-ties-to-missile-that-hit-mh17-371161.html). I have a few issues with the Bellingcat report! It can be found (at https://www.bellingcat.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/Origin-of-the-Separatists-Buk-A-Bellingcat-Investigation1.pdf).

I think the reader will need to make up their own minds, but let me elaborate on my reasoning. My issue here is that there is no clear confirmation on the photos. Faking social media events is too easy, some pictures are too grainy, the chances and danger of photo editing is too high. The report should have listed all the particulars of EVERY photo, where it was found, when downloaded and then we have other issues, data on a JPG can be manipulated, who took the photo and when.

These events give one clear view in my mind, the Russians are not proven guilty and the separatists are not innocent.

The second issue I have with all this are the Americans. They claim to have evidence, but will not release it. In my mind, if you held the Dutch and Australians in actual high regard, you would have released all footage and data. The next part is pure speculation on my part (just warning you ahead of it all). I think that the Americans have clear evidence and that evidence is that the BUK never came from Russia. I will elaborate on this a little later on in this article. In addition, I am amazed that both UK (GCHQ) and France (DGSE) have not stepped forward with satellite data either. Do you actually believe that in an area, so important for the near future would not keep their eyes on this all? Let us not forget that the Iraq debacle with these satellite pictures, not revealing WMD’s is the reason why most Europeans, actually most non-Americans do not trust America at present. To restore some credibility, they should have released this data, especially as this was a civilian aircraft, shot down by unlawful combatants, meaning non-combatants who directly engage in armed conflict. They are non-combatants as the pro-Russian separatists are members, not part of any recognised national army. So, they are unlawful combatants at best, terrorists at worst (shooting down a civilian plane is regarded as a terrorist act).

It is my personal believe, (again, an assumption, but a likely one) that the fault lies DIRECTLY with the Ukrainian government. Let me explain my reasoning. We know that the Ukraine has BUK units; there is additional information (non-reliable) that former Ukrainian soldiers are part of the pro-Russian separatists. One statement (again non-reliable) is “one militant told reporters that they originated ‘from a military warehouse'”. Yet is this such a stretch?

A linked quote is “The Minister of Interior Affairs Arsen Avakov gave orders to blow up the warehouse with arms and ammunition of military unit 3037 of the National Guard of Ukraine in Donetsk, to prevent the capture of remaining stock of arms and ammunition by separatists” (at http://igcp.eu/hronika-prestupleniy/military-warehouse-burned-down-donetsk?language=en).

Now it is time for my theory (again it is an assumption based upon information I found).

Russian separatists got hold of hardware (weapons, ammunition and vehicles) when they sprang into action. One of the vehicles (a set of three) was a BUK. Now this is not the full answer. You see, to properly operate a BUK you need a trained team, if not then there are a dozen things that will go wrong and as such MH-117 would never have been shot down with one missile, perhaps not even with 4 missiles. Here are my thoughts on the guilt of Ukraine.

The moment this was known, or even suspected that warehouses were raided, the Ukrainian government would have needed to alert all people, especially airlines. This was not done (as far as I know). When the BUK did its job, those in the Ukrainian government went into a blame game mode. More concerning is the chance that America has conformation of my theory, but they desperately need to do business with the Ukraine and this issue would make Ukraine not happy. So there we have it, because ego prevented people from ringing the alarm bell, a plane was shot down. If those power-hungry ‘commanders’ had rung the alarm bell, it is almost certain that MH-117 would have taken another path and these people would be alive today. Ego was the biggest killer, not the missile.

Again, this is based on a theory with limited data, now consider the facts. Do you think that Russia would hand over a BUK with a firing team to separatists? A situation that could escalate so fast, more important, do you think that these soldiers would shoot down a civilian airliner? All answers as I see them are a clear ‘NO!’ in my mind.

However, there were apparently ‘phone calls’ and as far as I saw, only the Daily Mail had them, which means that the ‘evidence’ is worthless, especially considering claims they made regarding FIFA in the past.

Another part comes from the Guardian (at http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/jul/20/mh17-crash-kerry-evidence-pro-russia-separatists-responsibility) “‘we have enormous input about this that points fingers’ Kerry told CNN’s State of the Union, ‘it is pretty clear that this was a system from Russia, transferred to separatists. We know with confidence that the Ukrainians did not have such a system anywhere near the vicinity at that point of time’” something that was published on July 20th.

It is the last part “We know with confidence that the Ukrainians did not have such a system anywhere near the vicinity at that point of time”. This MIGHT have been true, but where were they all? where is the list of tally for ALL the BUK systems Ukraine has, because the Ukraine does have them. Where are ALL the missiles? you see, i think that pro-Russian separatists did make plans and they needed hardware to create a win. With Crimea there was a bottleneck and pretty much all Crimean’s seem to have wanted to be returned to Russia, Donetsk is another matter, not all seem to prefer Russian return and as such it required military actions. Now, it is definitely possible (more likely than not is the legal term) that Russia would like to ‘assist’ to some extent with the separatists, because they look good if this happens, the idea that some people feel uneasy to join the EU and America is not everybody’s joyous idea. So if Donetsk becomes independent, it would be a good blow for Russia, yet I feel unable to believe that the Kremlin is so moronic (no other word fits the bill), to give access and control of Russian BUK systems to separatists, the backlash would be too hard.

So here we are, America might have evidence and refuses to release it, and we know for certain that separatists are guilty, but Russian guilt at present is not proven. There are too many issues and America keeping ‘evidence’ away is just too unreliable. Where lies the truth?

I have no clear answer, my assumptions are based on logic and factual interpretation of events, but I will admit firstly that I could be wrong too. It is up to you the reader to consider why three large players either have no satellite data or are unwilling to release it. Why?

The other path open now is that Russia could release all their satellite data, but are they willing to do this? Such evidence could exonerate the Russians, but they also have a stake in the fire, for as they give out the separatists, that connection would also be under fire, but would it be to the same extent? Consider that the units responsible are handed over to The Hague and that Donetsk would become a separate state, what would be the dynamic then? This is not a part that needs answering, but it should be looked at.

It will take a lot of time to figure out where the BUK exactly came from, but the louder some shout over the origin of the missile, whilst not handing over the evidence is a worry all by itself.

 

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A political triptych

Whenever I see a trilogy I remember my first introduction to something in three parts. They were the works of Hieronymus Bosch. My earliest recollection of them was seeing his work with my own eyes when I was around 12 years old, making ‘triptych’ the most expensive word in my vocabulary in those early years. The events that have been at the centre of our lives lately seem to reflect the chaos we see in these famous triptychs.

First there is the issue I described earlier this week in ‘Here come the Drums!’. Russia has had an opportunity to throw ‘its’ image in several ways. Not because of me or because of the image it needs to have, but because of the image that it could have regardless of what the US claimed it to be. I was wrong! Whether Putin is as stupid as the US makes him out to be, or whether his advisers are working on self-serving needs is something only historians can decide upon. The fact that we see massive amounts of evidence that the local Donetsk population is giving the internet, the initial view (at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7fjpB5gw3iM) was nothing compared towards the anger we see clips where people are going through the debris (at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XGzcHd118mM). There were additional clips on how people were cheering on downing a plane and other issues of utter disrespect, which seems to have been removed from YouTube and seem too outrageous to add to this blog.

I should also revisit the comparison that I made with the question: ‘A lawyer walks into an insane asylum and hands an inmate a gun, who then kills the Warden of that place. Who is to blame?‘, I still feel it is relevant. The question was who supplied the BUK system, was it Russian, or was it captured? You see, in BOTH cases the international authorities should have been alerted to the dangers the area brought. It was the leaked conversation that angered many (including me). “Nikolay Kozitsin: That means they were carrying spies. They shouldn’t be f_cking flying. There is a war going on“, this baboon, or better stated, this baboon on Lysergic acid diethylamide is an army commander?

The fact that it was at an altitude of 30,000 feet should have been an indication that it could have been non-military. The events that follow, to the massive acts of disrespect and legal transgressions should have been a clear indicator that Russia should have stepped away from all this seems abundantly clear. Head my words, I am not stating that Russia had done anything wrong, the mere fact that it did not speak out loudly towards this transgression tarnishes them on (an undeserved) equal footing as Commander Nikolay Kozitsin. President Putin should have seen that one coming a mile away. This is nothing compared to the stupidity by Sky News shown on the Guardian (at http://www.theguardian.com/media/2014/jul/20/sky-news-presenter-brazier-mh17-luggage-crash), where Colin Brazier shows himself to be more ignorant then a first year Journalism student. His actions were met with outrage by fellow presenters Jacqui Oatley and Shelagh Fogarty. There is one correction that must be made, the initial information I had, was that the Data Flight Recorders (black boxes) were on route to Russia, whilst the information I currently have is that they had only recently been taken to Donetsk (at http://www.smh.com.au/world/mh17-black-boxes-under-rebel-watch-in-donetsk-according-to-separatist-leader-20140721-zv4lg.html). It seems only correct that I alter that part here.

There is another side to all this, as we see (at http://www.smh.com.au/world/john-kerry-says-us-has-enormous-amounts-of-evidence-linking-russia-with-mh17-disaster-20140721-zv4mz.html) that the MH17 disaster is linked to Russia, there are still questions that give worry to this. Yes, I agree that in my view Russia bares definite responsibility, not just by the possible SAM delivery (as the original is still in question), but the fact that the pro-Russian separatists were not stricken down in a verbal lashing from the Kremlin to give full cooperation, which is a much heavier transgression. Consider that these ‘pro-Russians’ would not listen, accept, or heed the words from Moscow; does that not make them simple terrorists? If that would be the case, how could Russia consider not distancing themselves from this disaster from the very first moment the events took place? If Russia is in league with these terrorists, then was the downing of MH17 not a clear act of war?

Is at the centre of it all?

Consider the financial situation the USA is currently facing, it is broke, which means it has no way to feed the war industry, which gives Moscow a distinctive advantage, if we accept that neither wants to go nuclear any day soon, then the acts of ‘sanctions’ is pretty much the biggest artillery the west can muster at present, even as we continue to see the results of acts within Donetsk. It is harder to tell whether I am right or wrong (I could be either), yet the inactions in Syria and now Eastern Ukraine seems to show a lack of directive from all NATO parties (not just the US). This all gives shape to the art on the left side of the Triptych.

The next issue is the one I also briefly touched upon, it is the escalating issues in Gaza, where it seems more and more clear that Israel has had enough of the threat Hamas has made over the last few years and the loss of support that Hamas is enjoying, as well as the US no longer having a clear and powerful hold over the region on an economic base is also a cause for Hamas to wonder whether their approach to issues would ever have worked to begin with. Now that Egypt is distancing itself more and more from Hamas, they are now hoping for a resolution through Qatar, where they seem to hope that the UN will be able to find options with the help of Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani. The Sheik is a diplomatic force to be reckoned with, as a Sandhurst graduate, which is regarded as the finest military officer’s education in the world. The only issue that would remain is whether Hamas is in any way entitled to such distinctive representation. In one way, it might actually result in actual cease fire talks between Hamas and Israel; it is however also one of the final straws Hamas has left, if they decide to break that truce in any way, the results could not just end Hamas, it might actually end the options for any Palestinian Gaza. It could result in the biggest poker hand the Middle East has seen in a few decades. That and the option that progress could be in result will only emphasize the amounts of power lost to the US (who was utterly unable to make any headway here). It will also strengthen Qatarian influence over a larger portion of the Middle East, which could be exactly why Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani might consider to assist in the matter as well as the motto he trained under ‘Serve to Lead‘. Achieving that might just leave the Academy General’s bursting with pride (the General who was leading the academy when the Sheik was a student there). If we go back to the Triptych, then this would be right side of the Triptych. So what is at the centre?

These two sides are linked to a much larger painting in the middle. It is without a doubt the economic sides we have seen overwhelming the left and the right side. It is not the economy of missile systems (which might be an implied reference), but it is the economic powers that are too scared to lose it all in a war, which is of course the smallest of reasons to consider war over, but it is a factor none the less. More important, it is the diminished economic power of the US that is centre on all this. It would be unfair to just refer to the US here, but the bulk of the EEC is in a worse shape than the US currently is, so that is why the US is still the central element in all this. Their inability to get control of their overspending is a massive reason for the ‘blame’ towards the US. But let us not forget that the UK is not without blame either. In its current shape (especially the massive debt) the UK is also lacking in power to set for the ‘demanding’ (or better stated ‘intensely requesting’) image that should be given towards Eastern Ukraine and Israel/Hamas in these matters. Even if we give the proper weight to the Guardian article on the GDP of the United Kingdom (at http://www.theguardian.com/business/2014/jul/20/gdp-surpass-pre-financial-crisis-level), the headline ‘GDP to surpass pre-financial crisis levels‘ is just an indicator and even though I admit that the UK is still getting back on the horse, the issue ‘ignored’ for now is that Gross Domestic Product is no real indicator of better times, only for now that this seems to indicate good times for the ‘rich’. People in the UK are still on massive levels of debt and that is not likely to change any day soon. There is still a shortage on jobs and those who do have a job are inclined to go along with outrageous amounts of legalised slave labour. Freedom comes at a price, or better stated, when big business rules (or massively influences) the actions of government, we see an unbalanced view on life and every inch they do not claim will come at another cost.

Here we see the elements of a triptych by Hieronymus Bosch. Either of the famous three of his triptychs could apply to the chaotic mess we are all facing. In the end there is enough imagery to debate which one is the best depiction. The economic sector would argue that we are in the triptych ‘The Garden of Earthly Delights‘, whilst the people under the pressures of this economy will counter that their fate is shown by the triptych ‘The Last Judgment‘. The view also reinforces the views outsiders have towards the entire economy. Partaking in it will always be better than watching the result on the outside looking in, because those on the outside will never get to partake in the game at all.

2014 might end up being a very decisive year for many of us!

 

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