Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
September 07, 2019

Media Make False "Russian Prisoners" Claims To Blame Russia, Hide Ukraine's Civil War


Reuters: Russia and Ukraine swap prisoners in first sign of thawing relations

On the same day, a group of 35 Russian prisoners held in Ukraine landed in Moscow as part of the deal.

CNN: Film director Oleg Sentsov and MH17 suspect among those freed in Russia-Ukraine prisoner swap

The return of 35 Ukranian prisoners and 35 Russian prisoners is a move that could ease tensions between the two countries after Moscow's annexation of Crimea in 2014.

Human Rights Watch: Russia/Ukraine Prisoner Exchange Includes Release of Oleg Sentsov

At around the same time, a plane with 35 Russian prisoners, released by Ukraine, landed in Moscow.

Real news:

Jonah Fisher @JonahFisherBBC - 14:44 UTC · Sep 7, 2019
35 prisoners flew Kiev to Moscow as part of the swap. 22 of them have Ukrainian passports, 1 Moldovan, the rest Russian. Tsemakh the MH17 “witness” confirmed officially as swapped. (machine translated): At least 30 Ukrainian citizens left for Russia as part of the exchange

In the framework of the exchange of prisoners, Ukraine gave Russia 35 prisoners, at least 30 of whom are citizens of Ukraine. This follows from the preliminary list that appeared in the media.

The difference between the 30 Ukrainians counts and the 22 Ukrainian passports tally by BBC Kiev reporter Jonah Fisher are people from Crimea who now have Russian passports but who the Ukraine counts as Ukrainians.

So Ukraine released "at least" 30 (former) Ukrainians, 1 Moldavian and maybe a few Russians who probably never took part in the war in east Ukraine. One of the Russians released today was one Evgeny Mefedov (pictured) of whom writes (machine translated):

Russian, a participant in the Odessa "Anti-Maidan" and clashes on May 2, 2014.

He claimed that he came to Odessa as a tourist.

In September 2017, he was acquitted in a riot case, but was immediately detained for an encroachment on the territorial integrity of Ukraine.

Mefedov had done nothing. He was imprisoned five long years for being a Russian who visited Odessa at the wrong time.

The Ukrainian accounts find many less "Russian" prisoners than the "35 Russian prisoners" Reuters, CNN and HRW falsely claim.

In the still smoldering civil war in east Ukraine Ukrainians are fighting against Ukrainians. There was and is no "Russian invasion" of the Ukraine as 'western' media want to make us believe. The prisoners' nationalities prove it but Reuters CNN and HRW do not want you to know that. They want their readers to believe that "Russia did it".

A hat tip for the above goes to Ivan Katchanovski, a political scientist at the University of Ottawa who works on Ukrainian civil war issues.

Ivan Katchanovski @I_Katchanovski - 13:02 UTC · Sep 7, 2019

My analysis shows that overwhelming majority of more than 1,000 people, who were exchanged by #Ukraine government with #donbas separatists or #Russia in 2014-2019, were Ukrainian citizens, 1.5% regular Russian military members & 4% other #Russian citizens.

Posted by b on September 7, 2019 at 18:45 UTC | Permalink


Western media don't really want to admit that, if what's happened to Syria is actually a civil war, then what's going on in Ukraine is equally a civil war.

Posted by: Clueless Joe | Sep 7 2019 19:21 utc | 1

Excellent stuff.
Nato/US General Hodges repeatedly claimed there were 14,000 active russian troops in Ukraine. Still not seen any evidence of more than dozen in one place. (ditto Crimea).

Yet you can certainly find satellite evidence of 100 soldiers in one place, canteens, camps. Journalists were free to travel in the area - a tip to a journalist - if you want to find soldiers ask a cab driver to take you to where the prostitutes are.
(hey you can reverse that as advice to soldiers).

Posted by: Michael Droy | Sep 7 2019 19:24 utc | 2

That the scapegoat for MH17 was included in the swap may be a plus towards the comedian. Time will tell.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Sep 7 2019 19:34 utc | 3

Trump has congratulated Ukraine and Russia on the prisoner release. We await a similar reaction from Chrysta Freeland of the Canadian Bandera Party.

Trump tweeted: "Russia and Ukraine just swapped large numbers of prisoners. Very good news, perhaps a first giant step to peace. Congratulations to both countries!"

Posted by: dh | Sep 7 2019 19:46 utc | 4

Ukraine is an incurable country. The question is not whether Russia will have enough troops to occupy this country, but whether Russia will have enough psychiatrists and haloperidol throughout this territory.

Posted by: Martin | Sep 7 2019 19:53 utc | 5

Thank you Martin #5, maybe the Bill Gates foundation could team up with Amnesty International and fly in planeloads of people and drugs to assist. Perhaps the US army can guarantee supply from their mates in Afghanistan. There must be plenty of NGO's willing to join that scam too.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Sep 7 2019 20:10 utc | 6

Martin 5

I think Russia is content to leave the US carrying the scrap bucket. Russia grabbed Crimea US was still awarding contracts for its new installations there. The ethnic russians of Ukraine's industrial and mineral rich east told the ukies to piss off which left the US nothing but a bucket full of scraps.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Sep 7 2019 20:22 utc | 7

uncle tungsten #7

Bayer/Monsanto can supply the drugs. Monsanto already has concessions there.

Posted by: Russ | Sep 7 2019 20:24 utc | 8

Martin @ 5, Uncle Tungsten @ 7, PeterAU1 @ 8:

The area most in need of psychiatric help is western Ukraine (the old Galicia and Volhynia), ruled by Poland from 1921 until German invasion in 1939 or some time afterwards. When Ukraine starts breaking up some time in the next decade - I don't see the country surviving for much longer - western Ukraine is likely to be annexed by Poland. The Poles and the EU will be carrying the scrap bucket of Banderite Nazism.

Posted by: Jen | Sep 7 2019 20:40 utc | 9

If Volodomyr Tsemakh was still included in the prisoner swap after being questioned by Dutch investigators from the MH17 Joint Investigation Team, what might that action say about the nature of the allegations against him? Surely if the JIT had a case against Tsemakh, he should have stayed in prison and not been included in the swap.

With each passing day, the Netherlands becomes ever more complicit in the MH17 shootdown and cover-up, and one begins to suspect the Dutch should never have been put in charge of investigating the incident in the first place, given that the plane took off from Amsterdam Airport Schiphol which was already notorious as the place where the Underpants Bomber boarded a Michigan-bound flight in 2009.

Posted by: Jen | Sep 7 2019 20:53 utc | 10

At least a few Dutch politicians were peed off enough to make some waves in the media. That did not happen here. A bit sickening when so many politicians from both Australia and Netherlands will sacrifice their own people for US geo-political ambitions.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Sep 7 2019 21:13 utc | 11

Part of a pattern... see "Petite leçon d’histoire à Justin Trudeau" (voltaire [dot] org)

fragment in translation> Minister Justin Trudeau's statement on August 23 is politically motivated anti-Russian propaganda that does not serve Canada's national interest. Trudeau insulted, for no reason, not only the Government of the Russian Federation, but also all Russians whose parents and grandparents participated in the Great Patriotic War. It tries to remove all legitimacy from the emancipatory character of the war of the USSR against the German invader and thus to discredit the Soviet war effort. Trudeau's statement serves the interests of his Ukrainian-born foreign minister, Chrystia Freeland, a Russophobe who pays tribute to his late grandfather, a Ukrainian accomplice of the Nazis in German-occupied Poland.It supports a regime in Kiev that emerged from a violent coup against the elected Ukrainian president (the Maidan coup). This re

Posted by: Walter | Sep 7 2019 21:16 utc | 12

Re Walter @13

"Whitewashing collaborationism: Has it really come to this? As we mark the 80th anniversary of the outbreak of the Second World War, we discover that members of the Canadian Armed Forces, successors of those who fought against Nazi Germany, attended the unveiling last week of a monument to Nazi collaborationists. The head spins. It’s really quite hard to know what to make of this, except that contemporary geopolitics have combined with historical ignorance to produce a rather shameful outcome."

The Canadian troops who died in WWII died for nothing, other than enriching those that armed both sides.

Posted by: Yonatan | Sep 7 2019 21:36 utc | 13

The site has been down for several days.
Does anyone know what is going on?

Posted by: MoonReader | Sep 7 2019 21:43 utc | 14

"Croatia has issued a strongly-worded statement in response to a federal MP's speech at a controversial Croatian community event in Sydney."
"Liberal MP Craig Kelly is alleged to have conveyed Prime Minister Tony Abbott's best wishes at a gathering commemorating the establishment of a pro-Nazi Croatian government in the 1940s."

Yonatan, I thought this was bad but looks like Canada has gone one better.
A race to the bottom I guess.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Sep 7 2019 22:24 utc | 15

We had this one at that time too.

"Peter Abetz points to positive legacy of his high-ranking Nazi great-uncle
Western Australian MP tells SBS there was no excuse for Otto Abetz’s actions during the Holocaust but remembers his work to protect Jewish-owned art and negotiate peace..."

These were the types in government when MH17 was shot down. Other than now attacking China, nothing much has changed since then.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Sep 7 2019 22:35 utc | 16

Prime Minister Tony Abbott's best wishes at a gathering commemorating the establishment of a pro-Nazi Croatian

well the khazar ashkanazim funded the nazi man called hitler the churchill britisher the yanki and the monsters lenin and stalin
muttin new udder the sun or moon

the red heffers are here the temple grows oded yinon lives

Posted by: coin kleinfelt | Sep 7 2019 22:53 utc | 17

thanks b... apparently this propaganda is working well on canucks, as one can see from the comment section.. how the fuck crystia freeland is in any position of power or influence in canada is a huge embarrassment to me and a number of others living here.. ignorance reigns supreme.. federal election is in october probably.. we will be getting the same or a new set of rejects..

Posted by: james | Sep 7 2019 23:04 utc | 18

@ : Yonatan | Sep 7 2019 21:36 utc | 14

Possibly is always was, since the assent of Truman...a case may be posited that the 3rd Reich was an experiment and now they have got a better design, the 4th Reich. nothing particularly German - but what happened was, from the actual diaries, a deliberate policy of absorbing nazi into a derivative and re-organized long term project, fascism was a transnational engine, and remains so.. It does act and speak in, for those who know their history, rather precisely the same way - right down to proxy ensatzgruppen. And Reichtag Fire and enable acts, and racism, and so on...

Anyway we do see their kiddies in the Cannuck

Posted by: Walter | Sep 8 2019 1:10 utc | 19

OT--OT--OT--OT--OT--But still about a prisoner.

The Road to Lula and the road after the interview provided by Pepe Escobar. This is an FYI to barflies who might miss this part of the story. Another video's linked, but still in Portuguese. It's not a hard news piece; more recap and miscellaneous musings, Pepe-style. I hope he writes about the conversations he mentions. Alas, Lula's unlikely to be exchanged; Pepe's educated guess:

"A Lula in the process of Mandelazation may be even 'allowed' to be set free, or placed under house arrest."

Brazil was certainly a victory for the Neoliberalcons. Argentina may rebound but has a massive neoliberal ball & chain tied to it that ought to be repudiated. Trump may have failed in Eurasia, but another raping of all nations South of the border continues. Most are prisoner nations yearning to be free.

Posted by: karlof1 | Sep 8 2019 2:06 utc | 20

Trump has congratulated Ukraine and Russia on the prisoner release. We await a similar reaction from Chrysta Freeland of the Canadian Bandera Party.

Trump tweeted: "Russia and Ukraine just swapped large numbers of prisoners. Very good news, perhaps a first giant step to peace. Congratulations to both countries!"

Posted by: dh | Sep 7 2019 19:46 utc | 4

It's hilarious that Trump has used a flurry of mawkish MSM Fake News as an excuse to let Zelensky know that he's just as keen on Ukraine-Russia dialogue as Zelensky seems to be.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Sep 8 2019 4:13 utc | 21

Makes sense. For most people in The West everyone behind the Iron Curtain are Russians.

Posted by: jiri | Sep 8 2019 4:26 utc | 22

Re Peter AU 1 #17

"Peter Abetz points to positive legacy of his high-ranking Nazi great-uncle
Western Australian MP tells SBS there was no excuse for Otto Abetz’s actions during the Holocaust but remembers his work to protect Jewish-owned art and negotiate peace..."

So now Nazi looting of Jewish-owned art was "protecting" it, according to the MSM.

Well, no wonder the Guardian would say that. Britain is still "protecting" the Elgin Marbles from the neglect and abuse they'd no doubt endure under Greek custody. God knows what else they're "protecting". Oh yeah, Venezuela's gold.

Where it comes to looting the Nazis had nothing on the British, and that's part of why the Nazis' reputation is being rehabilitated as we speak, and why de jure neo-Nazism in the Ukraine is perfectly respectable in establishment and MSM circles.

Posted by: Russ | Sep 8 2019 4:47 utc | 23

The Moldovan is Petru Nicolaevici Melniciuc, born in 1972. No social media activity or previous mentions of him in the Moldovan press that I could find, so no idea who this guy is.

All Moldovans speak Russian, but not very many speak Ukrainian. Also, a lot of Moldovans used to (and some still do) go to Crimea for vacation, so could be yet another guy who was "in the wrong place at the wrong time".

Posted by: Sam | Sep 8 2019 4:55 utc | 24

Posted by: Sam | Sep 8 2019 4:55 utc | 27
The Moldovan is Petru Nicolaevici Melniciuc, born in 1972.
That is a Russian name Pyotr Nikolaevich Melnichuk (Пётр Николаевич Мельничук) written in Romanian style. In Moldavia tend to do that to facilitate proper pronunciation of Russian names written in Latin alphabet.

Posted by: hopehely | Sep 8 2019 5:18 utc | 25

Posted by: jiri | Sep 8 2019 4:26 utc | 25
Makes sense. For most people in The West everyone behind the Iron Curtain are Russians.

Well that might be a bit exaggerated (Eastern Germans and Hungarians were never considered Russians), but the notion that all Eastern Slavs are Russians is not that far from truth.

Posted by: hopehely | Sep 8 2019 5:32 utc | 26

@Jen 11

Indeed, the Dutch should not have been delegated the accident investigation. They were heavily involved in the February 2014 Nazi coup in the Ukraine. In 2013 they were the biggest donor of the anti-Russian propaganda outlet Hromadske TV. They have a conflict of interest.

If you read the accident investigation report, on page 239 it clearly states that the Ukrainian army was active with heavy anti-aircraft installations in the eastern part of the Ukraine. The Ukrainian army has BUK rockets of the type that downed MH17.

The Ukraine had the means and a motive, they should have been treated as a criminal suspect, yet without further investigation they were promoted to member of the JIT that does the criminal investigation.

Anyone with a bit of legal knowledge understands that including the (prime) suspect of a crime (with a veto right!) in the team that conducts the criminal investigation is a fatal flaw that will not go unnoticed in court, unless the judge is a puppet.

Yes, the Ukrainian army did it. Yes, Dutch politicians are responsible for the elaborate MH17 hoax.

Dutch politicians are crying wolf. "Is the Ukraine still a reliable partner?"

The Ukrainian economy is doomed. Most foreign leaders are fed up by the corrupt - even by African standards - oligarchs and Nazi's in Kiev. Regime change always turns out to be a little more complicated than envisioned.

The Dutch were among the first to support the coup in the Ukraine. They were among the first to support the Guaido guy in Venezuela.

Chances are that the truth about MH17 will get out soon. People in the Ukraine will start talking. They hoped for more support and a better future.

The implications for the Dutch police, public prosecutor and politicians are disastrous. When the financial ties with Bellingcat are uncovered, a few people can enjoy an early retirement.

Bellingcat has an office in The Hague. When the Dutch find out how they were lied to and manipulated, they should consider torching their office Odessa style.

Posted by: Stef Blok | Sep 8 2019 6:14 utc | 27

Offtopic #1:

Huawei starts rolling out Android 10.
When anti-Huawei sanction were promised many "analysts" loudly claimed Huawei would be detached not only from Android network services, but from sources too. Despite Android being FLOSS.

Offtopic #2: Academia, the site that publishes Katchanovsky's works, just sent me another notification about papers i'd be interested to read. One post was... refreshing :)

In addition to ethnographic study consisting of
participant observations and informal interviewing, data from European
Social Survey (2010-2013) and face-to-face survey conducted by an initiative
group of sociologists on Maidan were used in order to approach this goal.
Results of the study show that values of the Euromaidan (Universalism,
Benevolence, Self-Direction, Stimulation, and Security) coincide more with
European values, especially those of developed Western and Scandinavian
countries, than Ukrainian ones. Furthermore, values of protesters find its
reflection in deeply rooted Ukrainian identity.


protest against Yanukovych and Azarov, the former president and
PM of Ukraine respectively, following their refusal to sign the Association Agreement with the


First, the Euromaidan is not the first
revolution in modern Ukrainian history, but it is unique as the Orange revolution in 2004 was a
political revolution, while the Euromaidan is primarily a social, or even “values revolution.”


Other important processes that happened on Maidan were ‘de-sovietization’ and
‘paradigmatic shift’. From a retrospective point of view, the Euromaidan stimulated processes of
nation building, as well as decolonization from the Soviet legacy. Evidence of this could be so-
called “leninopad,” when people ruined monuments of Lenin as a sign of unacceptance of Soviet
ideology. Another example is a red-black flag of UPA (Ukrainian Insurgent Army) that was
nothing more than a symbol of unity against Soviet past. Mainly, this shift of values was
manifested by transition from state-reliance behavior to self-reliance, self-direction, and people
autonomy that has deep roots in Ukrainian identity and history. Altogether, it leads to the
development of civil society and growing demand for social activism and social capital building.
Lately, the Ukrainian revolution has turned to local crisis, and, afterwards, to global aggression,
terrorism, and war. The Euromaidan as a community has the potential to become a prototype of
a postmodern society that allows people of different origins, language preference, or religious
denomination to live together in harmony without any leader, except common values and ideas.
Thus, social structure and values of Ukrainian revolution deserve special attention from social

And so forth. The politically correct mumbo-jumbo which contradicts itself on each turn.

I most liked "decolonization from legacy". And that without italics or quotes, IOW in direct literal sense!

Well, expected from
Social, Health, and Communication Studies Journal
Contemporary Ukraine: A case of Euromaidan, Vol. 1(1), November 2014
MacEwan University, Canada
National University of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy, Ukraine
Ternopil State Medical University, Ukraine

Dunno, why Academia decided to notify me today...

Posted by: Arioch | Sep 8 2019 8:42 utc | 28

From the report on “The government plane carrying the released Russians landed in Moscow this afternoon.”

I appreciate the more accurate information found here, but in this case the cited US/UK sources’ fault may be more laziness than active disinformation. (Malice now comes into play as there’s virtually no chance they will follow up with a correction or more informed reporting.)

Posted by: David G | Sep 8 2019 9:39 utc | 29

Stef Blok @ 28

To go over old ground - MH17 was almost certainly shot down by a Ukrainian fighter jet. This is what I was told at the time by people who should know.

Russia has declined to get involved in the argument, save to emphasise that Russia was not involved, and to point out that the serial number of the Buk missile, which the Dutch claim shot down MH17, and which they paraded before the press, showed it to have been one that was in the possession of the Ukraine at the time of the shooting down of the aircraft. (Russia must have enjoyed that).

And off-topic slightly, except it relates to more porky-pies from the same clumsy NATO lie factory, there is a lovely snippet it the London Sunday Times today: “Novichok home declared safe. The Salisbury home of the former Russian spy Sergei Skripal, who survived a nerve agent attack, has been declared safe 18 months after its letterbox was coated with Novichok poison.......”

Oh, the letter-box! I thought you said the door-handle! That explains everything.

Posted by: Montreal | Sep 8 2019 10:08 utc | 30

@28 Stef Blok

Good post, esp. when coming from the Dutch foreign minister :))

Posted by: Headache | Sep 8 2019 10:13 utc | 31

Montreal @31

I've heard what I suppose could be called "a hybrid theory" on what downed MH17 which is that it took both the Ukrainian fighter jet and Ukrainian BUK to shoot it down. The Ukrainian fighter first shot up the cockpit of MH17, killing the pilot and copilot; however, since the airliner was on autopilot at the time of the attack it just continued on its merry way. The BUK was required to finish the job.

I am not sure that I buy this theory as it seems that it might take longer to realize that the fighter jet had not disabled the airliner and follow up with a missile than it would take for the airliner to pass out of Donbass airspace. On the other hand, the Ukrainians could have been prepared ahead of time for the possibility that a machine gun would not be enough to take out an airliner and have the BUK system ready to launch at a moment's notice, but that is not the kind of coordinated military operation that the Ukrops have ever shown themselves capable of.

On the gripping hand, if downing MH17 were an operation guided by the CIA it would have both belt and suspenders... the hit man in the jet and the backup team with the BUK.

Posted by: William Gruff | Sep 8 2019 10:34 utc | 32

Addendum to my post above:

For a hint as to how the CIA could get desperately poor, hungry and neglected Ukrainian military personnel to cooperate with a plan to shoot down a civilian airliner you need look no further than the email from the US State Department's shithook to the Indian captain of the Iranian tanker that b discussed on Friday.

Posted by: William Gruff | Sep 8 2019 10:55 utc | 33

William Gruff @ 33

The other part of the story of course is that MH17 was shot down in the mistaken belief that it was President Putin’s plane with the President in it. So anything is possible. The pilot of the Ukrainian jet later killed himself, or was killed. Surprisingly enough I first read this in a Murdoch newspaper.

I know the Ukraine a bit - I worked there - and saw that corruption and incompetence are absolutely endemic in that country, if you can call it a country. The Maidan coup was in the planning a couple of years before it happened - US and German businessmen were casing the joint, especially in the east, the wealthy part. The Americans wanted Crimea and Motor Sich, the Germans the iron and steel. No one wanted Galicia! I believe - and I emphasise that this is just a belief, that when Russia realised that all their attempts to create a loose federation of the different parts of Ukraine were going to be thwarted by the West, they gave the go-ahead to the people who wanted independence for Donetsk/Donbas. But these people, through greed, incompetence and/or corruption also in the event cocked up, which is why Mariupol is not now part of the independent area.

Posted by: Montreal | Sep 8 2019 11:05 utc | 34

Montreal @35 noted: "The pilot of the Ukrainian jet later killed himself, or was killed."

But of course, and I would expect the Ukrainian crew of the BUK system have also met an untimely end since the MH17 incident as well. While the CIA needs some of their higher profile thugs to survive until retirement and live it up in the suburbs of Miami for marketing purposes, most of their off-budget assets are considered disposable and are retired in a much more final manner.

Posted by: William Gruff | Sep 8 2019 11:18 utc | 35

@Montreal 28

I can assure you it was a Ukrainian BUK rocket. Coming from someone who actually knows.

The Ukrainian jet story involving a 30 mm cannon is completely bogus. The combined speed of the two aircraft, the firing rate and limitations of the gun make a single hit highly unlikely, let alone multiple hits.

The truth will come out, it's just a matter of time.

The dynamics of 2019 are different from 2014. People in the Ukraine will start talking. People in the intelligence community will start leaking. Politicians are eager for new photo ops. Journalists will defy gag orders. Freedom of information requests sometimes produce results that should have been redacted but slipped through nonetheless.

Russia knows. The Ukraine knows. The US knows. Malaysia knows. Belgium knows. Australia knows. The Netherlands knows. They all know. The Malaysian PM actually speaks up, ignoring the narrative.

It's a game of musical chairs. By the time the music stops, the Dutch police, public prosecutor and politicians are left standing with their pants down. This will have serious implications for Dutch legal proceedings, both on a national and international level.

It's scandalous how they use the family of the victims to further their political agenda. The politicians in The Hague should go straight to the ICC. Opportunistic bastards.

The various state and non-state actors involved, including the liars for hire from Bellingcat and their sponsors, should compensate the financial damage incurred in the EU and Russia as a result of the economic sanctions imposed on Russia.

Posted by: Stef Blok | Sep 8 2019 11:25 utc | 36

Stef Blok @ 37

No sensible reply I can give you, save to say I very much hope that you are right, and the truth will eventually come out.

What worries me most is the firm grip which NATO seems to have on so many European governments. NATO’s interests seem increasingly to diverge from those of the taxpayers who fund it.

Posted by: Montreal | Sep 8 2019 11:48 utc | 37

Montreal @ 31 and onwards:

The narrative I have read about the MH17 shoot-down is that two fighter jets coming from opposite directions shot down the Malaysia Airlines passenger jet. There was one jet coming towards the Boeing and another trailing it very closely behind, in its radar shadow. (The source of this narrative was Peter Haisenko, an ex-Lufthansa airline pilot.)

Also one of those jets did not make it back to the airfield and the pilot of the other jet, Vladimir Voloshin, was apparently shaking (with fear?) and repeating that the Boeing that was shot down was not the plane he and the other pilot were supposed to shoot down. Voloshin is the fellow who is supposed to have committed suicide.

The BUK missile attack may have been insurance to cover up the presence of the machine-gun hole; in other words, it was intended to lead any future forensic investigation astray. The SA-11 missile does not hit its target directly: rather, when it detects that it is close enough to its target (in front of and above), it explodes and sprays the target with something like 6,000 - 7,000 pieces of shrapnel. Because the Boeing is cruising at several hundred kilometres an hour, the entire plane passes under the cloud of shrapnel. Most of that shrapnel would penetrate the plane's shell and hit the crew and passengers.

So it's very curious then, that when bodies of the Australian passengers were sent to the State Coroner of Victoria, and CT scans were run over the bodies to detect metal (they'd been scanned by CT previously at the Hilversum US military base in the Netherlands for exactly the same thing), no metal was found.

Posted by: Jen | Sep 8 2019 12:00 utc | 38

A typo in my comment @ 39!

"... The BUK missile attack may have been insurance to cover up the presence of the machine-gun hole ..."

"Hole" should read "holes".

There, that should stop any machine guns firing in my direction for the oversight!

Posted by: Jen | Sep 8 2019 12:04 utc | 39

11 Peter " Too true, Tony Abbott Australian PM is completely to blame here! With in 10 minutes he knew who 'dunnit'.

Posted by: col from Oz | Sep 8 2019 12:36 utc | 40

Jen @ 39

I have noticed on one or two other sites/threads that mention of the fighter aircraft brings an immediate reaction from those who monitor these sites. It may well be that the narrative - Russia done it - is impossible to sustain if Ukrainian fighters are close by, whereas an anti-aircraft missile could of course have been despatched by any of the players.

Anyway, many thanks for your post which I find very helpful indeed.

Posted by: Montreal | Sep 8 2019 12:48 utc | 41

Montreal - Door handle/knob, letter box, bottle of perfume... And we, the sheeple, are supposed to believe it all. Well, the BBC has finally admitted (at least on its World Service version of yesterday) that it is/will be (has all along?) partnering with the DARPA/Mossad folks via their more commonly recognized versions, to whit, Google, FB, Twit etc., in preventing our (that is the bewildered herd) being subjected to "disinformation," "fake news." So heartening to know that the British version of state-funded/controlled media has our very best interests at heart and wants to end our subjection to all of the lies, tall tales and mis/disinformation out there which distort our perception of reality. Reality as relayed by such *trustworthy beacons of freedom thought, speech and truth* as the BBC and NPR, that is.

Meanwhile, according to Edward Curtin over on Off Guardian, NPR's new chief of whatever is a certain John Lansing, who is still, at present chief of the US government's worldwide propaganda arm: VoA, Radio marti etc. NPR itself has confirmed this on their own website. So, even if one trusted (which I didn't) that NPR (and its sister propaganda visual arm, PBS) provided the truth and nothing but the truth before, we can now rest assured that what we shall be told to believe, think and understand about the world is in truly trustworthy leadership hands...

Posted by: AnneR | Sep 8 2019 13:20 utc | 42

Occam's razor is a potent tool.

Two Ukrainian ground attack jets approaching from the front and from behind, simulaneously firing guns (at each other?), an air-to-air missile and a BUK to finish it off in one perfectly orchestrated attack, well that's not just beyond the hosh posh capabilities of the Ukrainian armed forces, that's beyond physics.

The Ukrainian armed forces excel at firing unguided missiles at civilian targets on the ground. To actually hit an airliner is something they get right about once every 13 years.

Posted by: Stef Blok | Sep 8 2019 13:27 utc | 43

@ Jen | Sep 8 2019 12:00 utc | 39

' The SA-11 missile does not hit its target directly: rather, when it detects that it is close enough to its target (in front of and above), it explodes and sprays the target with something like 6,000 - 7,000 pieces of shrapnel. Because the Boeing is cruising at several hundred kilometres an hour, the entire plane passes under the cloud of shrapnel. Most of that shrapnel would penetrate the plane's shell and hit the crew and passengers. '

This is a common misunderstanding of the inner workings of such a warhead. As I understand the warhead was of ABF (annular blast fragmentation) type, optimized for max hit probability in a disk like expanding pattern. To achieve max hit probability and, too, guarantee max damage to the target with such a device one would need a. a sufficient number of pre-manufactured fragments in suitable size and shape, b. optimized mass ratio of the propelling charge and fragments, c. max energy (speed) of the secondary missiles (fragments).
Explosives used in such devices come with a Gurney velocity of 2500-2750 m/s which leads us depending on the mass ratio from a. applied in a AA device to initial fragment velocities in the range of 1700-2200 m/s. Air drag, while it is substantial, isn't of much concern in that phase.
Now, if such a device detonates say 10m from the intended target the fragments will reach that target in about 5-10 milliseconds. During that short amount of time the target (450 knots=~220m/s) will move a meager 1-2 m on its trajectory. Initial 'thickness' of the expanding fragment layer in this type of warhead I would estimate to be about 0.7-1 m, and expanding. Exact figures could only be given by the manufacturer or the Russian DoD. Anyhow, this will only result in a quite narrow band (couple of meters wide) of multiple hits but will not cover large areas of the target's fuselage. Any other hit (wings etc.) could be explained by impact from tertiary missiles (debris from the disintegrating Buk missile itself).

If the airplane was hit by 30mm AA shells, these usually employ HEI explosives, there should be at least some residue to be found in the wreckage. I'm not at all saying there was none, given the 'quality' of investigation we all witnessed, they might simply have chosen to not reveal their findings.

Same is with remnants from fragments and/or shell casings. I would expect them to be of different types of alloys that would reveal the culprit (missile or aircraft cannon) in a proper investigation easily.

I once asked our dear CraigSummers (now MIA) to answer 2 questions in regards of the alleged launch site, that he chose not to reply to. Admittedly it was kind of a trick question I put to him to answer. I asked him to give me the initial exhaust velocity of the motor and the initial rate of consumption of propellant, which I would estimate to be in the range of 2000m/s for its mean velocity in the first second after ignition and a rate of consumption of 15-25 kg/s. Now, we all know of the dense white smoke coming from such a motor, this is predominantly aluminum oxide, as the propellants contain a significant amount (11-20%) of powdered aluminum in the 10-100 microns range. What does this mean for establishing the proper launch site. Easy, as the exhaust velocity and fuel consumption is already quite high (high momentum, kinetic energy hitting the ground) and it takes some time for the missile to leave the launch rail there must be significant contamination of the surrounding soil with aluminum oxide of specific particle size. If there's no such contamination, then there's been no launch.
So, if anyone being challenged about the 'Bellingcat'ian' claim, simply go ask about exhaust velocity, rate of consumption of propellant and analyzed soil samples of the site. This will shut them up for good.

Posted by: Hmpf | Sep 8 2019 13:41 utc | 44

The best analysis I have come across so far about Ukraine is - Flight MH17, Ukraine and the New Cold War by Kees Van Der Pijl.
Van Der Pijl
Thank you, b, for hosting this wonderful place. Thank you to all the super smart folks out there.
Especially Jen!

Posted by: roza shanina | Sep 8 2019 16:20 utc | 45

> ....Ukrainian fighter first shot up the cockpit of MH17, killing the pilot and copilot; however, since the airliner was on autopilot .....The BUK was required to finish the job.

Posted by: William Gruff | Sep 8 2019 10:34 utc

1. I doubt a jetfighter can precisely machine-gun airliner cockpit. They both move very fast. Especially as the suspected bullet holes run top bottom AFAIR, not at the same related height.
It is pretty easy to move machine gun across target, when both you and target stand motionless on solid ground.

But in flight? While changing aim in both horizontal and vertical directions?

How many precedents do you know?

When Korean airliner ( KAL-007 ? ) was disabled that night, it was not gunned, but rockets were fired into its engines (and the airliner still flew away and almost made it to Japan regardless).

2. If there was double-shot, then shot at cockpit should had different aim: prevent people onboard reporting attack to earth.

During 9/11 passengers of the third hijacked flight allegedly got news and made last stand against terrorists, or so we were said, so passengers were able to communicate with their families somehow.

When Ukraine used S-200 to shoot Russian-Israeli flight over black see - pilots reported to flight controller. Albeit the report was very short and inconclusive, it was received.

Did anyone heard MH-17 pilots or passengers reported anything before death?

Posted by: Arioch | Sep 8 2019 19:34 utc | 46

Jen 39
Re the panel first described by the Canadian. Many people, when they first see something that shocks them will try to find the words that give a description to what they are seeing. Very noticeable in watching original video of 9 11.

The holes in the cockpit panel are deceiving because of the double layer or skin. Most holes in the outer skin are very distorted and do not show the outline of whatever hit them. In studying high definition photo of that panel, what I see is that where struck, the outer skin has curled or been blown outwards and the inner layer has curled inwards.
As though there has been a high pressure or tiny explosion between the layers when struck.

I have a rough understanding of how this happens, but Hmpf or others may be able to explain the science behind it.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Sep 8 2019 20:38 utc | 47

@ james
"how the fuck crystia freeland is in any position of power or influence in canada is a huge embarrassment to me and a number of others living here"

Thanks, I feel less alone after reading this comment...

Posted by: nwwoods | Sep 8 2019 20:42 utc | 48

The buk missile approaching from in front is kind of
disinformtion. The buk does not "know" the front from the back
or any other part of the plane. It is guided to the target by
"proportional navigation" which predicts an intercept point
and then follows a trajectory to that point. The missile does
not know or care if this trajectory is from the front or
indeed from any other angle. It is simply guided by the
proportional navigation system to the point of intercept.

Posted by: evilempire | Sep 8 2019 20:51 utc | 49

Arioch @ 47:

"... Did anyone heard MH-17 pilots or passengers reported anything before death?"

My understanding is that the flight crew of an Air India jet travelling from New Delhi to Birmingham over eastern Ukraine was contacted by ATC in Dnepropetrovsk to try to establish contact with the MH17 flight crew after the latter plane's transponder went off. The Air India jet was 90 seconds (or 25 kilometres) away from the Malaysia Airlines jet.

For the record, Singapore Airlines had a Copenhagen-to-Singapore flight going over the same area where MH17 fell just minutes (90 km) away, and another flight from Paris to Singapore over the area at almost the same time.

The Conversation link lambasts both Singapore Airlines and Malaysia Airlines for flying planes through a warzone but what people should remember is that MH17 crew had requested permission to fly higher above Ukrainian airspace but was denied this permission. Flying through a country's airspace instead of above it incurs an airspace tax to be paid by the airlines using it and the Banderites sorely needed the money to maintain their war against the Donbass rebels.

Posted by: Jen | Sep 8 2019 22:59 utc | 50

Hmpf @ 45:

This website (which follows the MSM view of the MH17 shoot-down) provides information on the BUK SA-11 missile and its most likely warhead (9N314). The shrapnel carried by a 9N314 warhead includes bowtie or butterfly-shaped shrapnel, parallelepid or diamond-shaped shrapnel and cuboid shrapnel. So there is a mix of shrapnel of different sizes and shapes, and densities as well.

Four pieces of BUK missile shrapnel (two bowties, two cuboid) were apparently found in the bodies of the MH17 flight crew.

Also my thanks to you and Evil Empire @ 50 for the correction regarding how a BUK missile is guided to its target. So it is possible that much of the Boeing did not actually pass under the shrapnel explosion cloud and most of it was concentrated on the left-hand side of the cockpit (where the pilot sits).

Posted by: Jen | Sep 8 2019 23:50 utc | 51

Posted by: Jen | Sep 9 2019 1:01 utc | 52

Looks like my replies to Hmpf, Evil Empire and Peter AU 1 are disappearing down the rabbit hole because of too many links perhaps.

Anyway ... thanks to Hmpf and Evil Empire for pointing out how the BUK missile is guided to its target. I have now seen a diagram of how proportional navigation works and can see how the shrapnel explosion cloud could have hit the cockpit (and its left-hand side in particular) but leave the rest of the plane unaffected.

Posted by: Jen | Sep 9 2019 1:32 utc | 53

According to the Saker, a Ukrainian fighter jet shot an IR missile at MH17, which hit the left engine, and the plane started going down, and slowed down, and the Uke fighter caught up, and strafed MH17’s cockpit with its machine gun.

Apparently it wasn’t a BUK, as this (bigger missile) would’ve blown the plane apart more, and also would’ve left a long smoke trail from the ground, which these apparently don’t dissipate quickly, as they’re more particulate smoke than condensation contrail.

Posted by: Canadian | Sep 9 2019 2:47 utc | 54

@ Peter AU 1 | Sep 8 2019 20:38 utc | 48

Nope, I won't be of any help in this regard. Same as you, I do have a couple of ideas but still these are nothing more than guesswork on my part. Tried to find some papers dealing with that exact problem but have got nothing so far.

Posted by: Hmpf | Sep 9 2019 3:03 utc | 55

Re: Posted by: Arioch | Sep 8 2019 19:34 utc | 47

Did anyone heard MH-17 pilots or passengers reported anything before death?

Just waiting for those Blackbox Flight Recorder tapes.

They should be out soon as I believe the UK has some of their best people on them.

Just need a little positive folks as MH17 is obviously a very sensitive subject.

Posted by: Julian | Sep 9 2019 4:08 utc | 56

@ Hmpf | Sep 9 2019 3:03 utc | 55

RT english had reports from the crash site while it was still burning/smoking and was interviewing witnesses. Maybe you can still find contemporaneous information there, fresh, raw, likely unedited for content (no spin doctoring). Usually first reports of any incident are the most informative. Later reporting can start to become contaminated with 'agenda'. YMMV

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Sep 9 2019 7:34 utc | 57

@ Formerly T-Bear | Sep 9 2019 7:34 utc | 57

Unfortunately that won't work. I believe I've seen many if not most of these reports, what they are lacking is hard data. One would need all the properties of the layered skin and the penetrating projectile and most importantly the means to evaluate properly, that is a thorough understanding of the physics driving that kind of response to impact and penetration. Example for questions I believe would need to be asked: are the respective Young's moduli (elasticity) involved and to what degree? Is the observed deformation a result of a reflection wave caused by incompatible impedance values of the materials involved? is it driven by subsequent penetration of the layers? is it something completely different? or is it a combination of the above or other factors? One would need to be a physicist or expert in material sciences to offer a substantiated answer to this, a chemist won't cut it.

Posted by: Hmpf | Sep 9 2019 8:13 utc | 58

@ Hmpf | Sep 9 2019 8:13 utc | 58

My point was that before spin could be applied to 'hard data', those witnessing the event, none mentioned seeing any column of smoke from an anti-aircraft missile but had mentioned seeing a jet fighter in the immediate vicinity of the passenger plane. This report was made at the time of the crash as mostly smoke but a few flames were recorded, but no time for editing and compiling some specific narrative had elapsed. Basically its raw news reporting. Starting from such, later news finessing can be judged, here the insistence of BUK being involved, as being disingenuous or spurious additions. The explosions shown on the original broadcasts of the Boston Marathon event certainly looked different from those presented at the following trial just relying on retained memory. A substitution through change of POV can hide fake from real easily enough. The incessant repeating of the original broadcast assures a modicum of fidelity to such induced memory to those not memory disabled by subsequent alteration. Again YMMV.

Ask too, What chain of evidence exists that the BUK pieces shown were connected to that specific event? Whose word or allegation is to be believed? There seems to be some controversy what peppered the holes made in the passenger plane. I have no other contribution than that - no other answer.

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Sep 9 2019 9:00 utc | 59

If guided by probabilities, then the Buk missile
with a 17m proximity fuse exploding 1m from the
cockpit window is a one in a million shot. Compare
this to the image seeking Python missile that seeks
and closes on the cockpit: probably 9 times out
of ten it will successfully close on the cockpit.
This is why it is famed for its ability to bring down
much larger planes.

Posted by: evilempire | Sep 9 2019 15:04 utc | 60

Okay, update on the Moldovan citizen, who has a Ukrainian surname btw. They're accusing him and 3 others of "high treason" for secretly working with the Russian gov't in Odessa.... not Crimea or Donbass.

Posted by: Sam | Sep 9 2019 15:52 utc | 61

MH17 reconstruction photos

Almaz Antey test.
Still from video

11kg Python warhead most likely too small.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Sep 9 2019 16:44 utc | 62

In what may seem like an off-topic post but really isn't, I want to bring up the role of NGO's, such as Human Rights Watch, in regime change wars and other such activities. This aspect of their operations is completely unknown to the vast majority of their own donors, not to mention the general public. I, for one, was a regular contributor to HRW until my eyes were opened to this trickery about two years ago. That is when I stopped contributing. I wonder if that organization and others like it (e.g. Amnesty International) have been infiltrated and effectively taken over by various Western government agencies. To me, it seems highly likely. Does anyone have information that can shed light on the subject?

Posted by: Rob | Sep 9 2019 16:55 utc | 63

Easiest way to check ngo's is to check partners or donors.

Start doing that and you find that all major and all minor ngo's that appear in various MSM articles link back to the likes of NED, Soros, Ford Foundation ect.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Sep 9 2019 17:06 utc | 64

I carefully researched the Python missile to
confirm the Russian analysts view that it was
a Python missile that brought down MH17. Their
contention was that some variants of the Python have
30 kg warheads. I confirmed at that time that the Python
was capable of carrying a 30 kg warhead. The information
should still be available on the internet, although it might
now take a little research. I would not have accepted their
hypothesis if I couldn't confirm this point.

Posted by: evilempire | Sep 9 2019 18:29 utc | 65

I can't at this moment find any text information on the
Python variants that carry 30 kg warheads. However
these images seem to be variants that
are carrying larger warheads than 11 kg.

Posted by: evilempire | Sep 9 2019 19:22 utc | 66

The BUK warhead is around 70 kg and gave a very similar projectile spread and density as what can be seen on the remains of MH17. I do not think a warhead less than half the weight would achieve a similar pattern (spread and density).

Russia make it difficult by showing the aircraft climbing towards MH17 plus the live BUK radar positions and then the BUK test. Because no one appears to have seen a missile launch, air to air missile seems likely, but after the BUK test, known air to air missiles seem too small.

The the area Almaz Antey believed a BUK would have to be launched from to achieve the spread pattern had a 2-3000ft cloud base and light rain that day. One possibility I keep in mind- if there were also grads or other rockets firing along with the weather conditions, a BUK launch may not stand out.
(off memory, the sky was clear where MH17 was hit but, heavy cloud, low cloud base and light rain to the south where Almaz Antey believed a BUK would need to be launched from)

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Sep 9 2019 19:46 utc | 67

Compare this image
with the 11 kg warhead Python. It is at least twice the diameter and much longer.

Posted by: evilempire | Sep 9 2019 20:59 utc | 68

Any idea what it is. Air to air, or air to ground. Size looks good.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Sep 9 2019 21:20 utc | 69

According to the captions and descriptions it is a python 5
air to air missile. I have not seen any references that pythons
can be air to ground. They have the surface to air python(derby)

Posted by: evilempire | Sep 9 2019 23:13 utc | 70

Rob @ 64:

Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch are the organisations where former Foggy Bottom senior employees go into retirement.

I believe that some years ago, an open letter signed by a number of activists - Noam Chomsky may have been a signatory - was sent to both organisations criticising them for hiring former US State Department employees in senior positions. I have been trying to find this letter online but so far have had no success.

Posted by: Jen | Sep 9 2019 23:38 utc | 71

I think the article was on the smaller missile which is a python rather than the lager one appeared to be attached to the wingtip. Soviets had a few heavier air to air, 40 up to nearly 70kg warhead. The 70kg most likely to big for SU-25 as it was designed for the mig 25. The one around the 50 to 60 kg mark. A few mods and it would've been good to go.
Apparently Georgia modified a few Ukraine SU-25's that Israel lent a hand with, so I had been looking at Israeli missile a few years back. I thought there was one around the 40kgbut could be wrong on that.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Sep 9 2019 23:40 utc | 72

Here is a closeup of
the same image. It is clearly a python missile, a variant of the python 5.

Posted by: evilempire | Sep 10 2019 0:32 utc | 73

There also was UkroTV news about a week before MH-17 showcasing their brave soldiers moving their BUK detachments to protect skies of Donbass from Russian aggression. Kinda routine jingoistic bla-bla, that is only interesting in retrospect, when euromaidowns started spinning "only rebels had BUKs we did not have"

Posted by: Arioch | Sep 10 2019 1:53 utc | 74

You may well be right. Fins at the front are most likely for high g maneuvering.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Sep 10 2019 4:13 utc | 75

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