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    Posted August 9, 2014 by

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    Boeing 777 crash mystery (part 2)

    Arguments of the Ukrainian side
    Ukrainian officials have also actively commented on the catastrophe blaming the rebels at first, then Russia, then both. The Ukrainian side released in the Internet and social networks a number of materials ostensibly proving the guilt of pro-Russian militias.
    Just within two hours after the passenger aircraft was downed an audio record of the alleged rebels' negotiations about the crash was posted in the web. However, the technical analysis experts found evident signs of audio cutting and audio layout in it. In addition, there was no any evidence provided that voices on the record belonged to rebels. In this regard, many Internet users agreed that these materials could have been premeditated by the Ukrainian side.
    Besides, authorities in Kiev distributed in social networks the video allegedly showing Buk launcher being transported from the crash area back to Russia. However, experts proved that number 312 launcher was seen in a Ukrainian armored vehicles convoy in March 2014. More than that, Krasnoarmeysk city pictured on the video has remained under control of the Ukrainian law enforcers since May 11. (http://rt.com/news/174868-ukraine-buk-falsification-continues/)
    Ukraine also published photos displaying the anti-aircraft missile systems located on the territory the rebels' control. The Ukrainian officials tried to ensure that the pictures were taken by their own satellites. However, as we made it clear earlier only American and Russian satellites were over the Ukrainian territory at the time of the crash. Incorrect date, time, and location of shadows from objects as well the lack of cloud cover registered that day also proved that those photos were nothing but fake. (http://rt.com/news/177296-ukraine-mh17-satellite-images/)
    It is more surprising that Ukraine has not yet released a record of negotiations between the MH17 crew and a Ukrainian air controller who "accompanied" the liner up to the tragedy. This casts natural doubts that the Ukrainian authorities are trying to conceal some facts.
    Their attempts to destroy the evidence at the crash site as soon as possible testify to the same thing. Since MH17 had been downed the Ukrainian troops kept on pounding the crash site despite the fact that there were no military infrastructure or rebels' roadblocks in the area.
    Arguments of the Russian side
    The Russians reject all accusations related to MH17 downing in the Ukrainian airspace.
    During the briefing on July 21 the Russian Department of Defense presented its objective control data over Boeing 777 crash. According to the data the airplane deviated from the route for 14 km over the area of armed conflict. At the same time Russian Defense Department detected a Ukrainian Air Force aircraft, presumably Su-25, at a distance of 3-5 km from the Boeing.
    In addition, Russian militaries made public satellite images depicting the Ukrainian air defense units located close to the crash area. So it's clear enough that MH17 route went just inside the hitting area of the Ukrainian anti-aircraft systems.
    It is worth noting that the Russian side also refers to the statements of the Ukrainian officials. Thus, according to media reports, the Attorney General of Ukraine admitted on July 18 that the rebels had had neither Buk nor S-300 air defense systems. (http://en.itar-tass.com/world/741271)
    At the same time, the Ukrainian forces had their anti-aircraft missiles installed in the area of conflict shortly before the liner's downing. For what purpose? The fact is that rebels have never possessed any aviation units. (http://rt.com/news/173636-buk-malaysian-plane-crash/)
    My own opinion
    According to Ukraine, rebels possessed one Buk launcher capable to shoot down airplanes even at the height of 10,000 meters. As for the Buk anti-aircraft system, the Internet says that it is quite a complicated system consisting of four vehicles. So it's hard to imagine how the launcher itself could "accidentally" lock onto Boeing 777 and shoot it down without guidance and targeting station that detects the target within 150 km.
    A friend of mine, an air defense officer, told me an interesting thing. The Buk launcher hitting range is about 30-40 km. The militaries always use several missile launchers to destroy air targets as at a high altitude and speed (about 900 km/h) an aircraft stays in the hitting area of one launcher just for 4-6 minutes. I also can't imagine how untrained personnel could acquire a target and hit it. And it is known that most of rebels are workers, miners, metallurgists, who are unlikely to have necessary skills to manage such a complex technique that requires special education and regular training.
    At the same time we are aware that the Ukrainian militarymen are skilled enough in such things. In 2001, Ukraine had sad experience downing a civilian aircraft by mistake. Siberia Airlines Flight 1812 from Israel to Russia was shot down over the Black Sea by the Ukrainian ground-to-air missile. Furthermore, it were Ukrainian air defense experts who were shooting down Russian military aircraft in the sky over Georgia in August 2008. And we know exactly that the Ukrainian Buk system was located near the crash site. In any case, Russians showed the satellite images proving it and Ukraine did not refute that.
    However, in my opinion, you need to find out who gains profit to determine who is really guilty. In this case, it's obvious that Boeing 777 crash brought huge benefits only to the Ukrainian side which sought for global support to reverse an unfavorable military situation in Donbas. Besides, keep in mind that the US was able to persuade the Europeans to introduce new sanctions against Russia only after the disaster.
    However, I do not want to make preliminary conclusions. Once again I want to repeat, we must wait for the outcome of the international commission investigation.
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