By John Helmer, the longest continuously serving foreign correspondent in Russia, and the only western journalist to direct his own bureau independent of single national or commercial ties. Helmer has also been a professor of political science, and an advisor to government heads in Greece, the United States, and Asia. He is the first and only member of a US presidential administration (Jimmy Carter) to establish himself in Russia. Originally published at Dances with Bears
The Dutch Government has decided to launch a missile attack on Moscow in October. By suppressing all evidence obtained from the bodies of victims of the crash of Malaysian Airlines MH17, officials of the Dutch Safety Board and associated Dutch military officers, police and prosecutors are preparing to release a report on the crash with a gaping hole in its veracity.
At the same time, and apparently unknown in The Netherlands, an Australian coroners’ report on the identification and forensic testing of the bodies carried out in The Netherlands reveals post-mortem evidence to show that in their public statements the Dutch government officials have been lying about metal evidence they claim to have found. This evidence has not only been buried with the passengers’ remains. It has been buried by the Dutch Government and by coroners in the UK and Australia, who are now legally required to investigate independently what caused the deaths of citizens in their jurisdiction. All are withholding the CT scans, X-rays, autopsy and other post-mortem results, including metallurgical assays, the documentation of which accompanied the coffins of the aircraft’s victims from The Netherlands to their homelands.
Erwin Muller, co-chairman of the Dutch Safety Board (DSB), the official aviation accident body, and Fred Westerbeke, a Dutch police officer heading the Joint Investigation Team (JIT), a forensics unit of the Dutch prosecution authority, have announced that on July 1 a draft “final” report on the destruction of MH17 was issued to the states participating in the investigation.
There are 7 of these states, according to the DSB: The Netherlands, Malaysia, Ukraine, the Russian Federation, the United Kingdom, the United States, and Australia The JIT is a more restricted group comprising Dutch, Ukrainian, Australian, and Belgian security and intelligence officers. The Dutch officials also claim they have been considering comments from officials of the other governments, and have scheduled October 13 for public release of the DSB document.
What the DSB report means now hinges — government officials, pathologists and lawyers say — on four lookalike words with fundamentally different meanings. The “first” is onderdelen (parts) which DSB officials have been using to refer to a Buk ground-to-air rocket. The second term is “metallfragmente” and “metalen deeltjes”, which Westerbeke and his spokesman have been using interchangeably to mean metal from outside the MH17, and also from the fuselage itself. The third key word is “missile”, which Australian coronial investigators say refers, not to a Buk or any other type of explosive ordnance, but to “flying objects which strike the body”. The fourth term is “raket”, which Dutch investigators, including those engaged in the official identification of the MH17 victims, say applies to air-to-ground rockets like Buk, as well as to air-to-air, infrared and other rockets fired by aircraft.
For the Dutch to make the case that MH17 was shot down by a Russian-made and Russian-deployed Buk ground-to-air missile, the metal in the corpses and body parts is the only certain evidence which has been recovered from the crash site; analysed painstakingly in the record of the Dutch investigations; and repatriated in certified dossiers Dutch and other sources say accompanied the coffins when they were flown home. This documentation is now held in files in The Netherlands and in the coronial agencies of all the countries to which remains and coffins have gone.
Over the past week Dutch, British, and Australian officials all refuse to confirm they are holding this evidence. Nor will they answer questions about when, or if, they plan to commence inquests at which this evidence must be presented publicly.
Dirk Huyer, the chief coroner in Ontario, home province of Andrei Anghel, the lone Canadian passenger to lose his life on MH17, says Canada is not going to investigate. “It is very uncommon for the death investigation system to become involved in a death that occurred outside of the province… Our authority for investigation is limited to Ontario—we do not have any authority to direct investigation outside of our provincial jurisdiction.” Accordingly, his office has not been involved in the MH17 investigation, “and therefore there will be no inquest.”
If the inquest evidence does not substantiate the difference in meaning of the ambiguous terms issued publicly so far – and if the inquests themselves are postponed indefinitely so the evidence is kept secret, then one conclusion is certain – there is no evidence that a Buk missile explosion struck MH17 and caused the death of those on board.
A Dutch pathologist, Professor George Maat who had participated directly in the identification of the bodies at Hilversum military base, was fired in April by the Dutch government for presenting medical students studying identification techniques with illustrations of the records he made. Last month Maat wrote to contradict claims circulating on Ukrainian websites that an X-ray showing metal fragments originated from either an MH17 victim, or from the Dutch investigation. The fabrication can be examined here. Maat presented no X-rays at his controversial lecture, and has aired no claim that missile shrapnel was identified in victim bodies.
An Australian coronial investigation, reported at a professional meeting of international coroners and pathologists in Melbourne, Australia, last November, has reported the only authenticated details of the process which the Dutch undertook after the crash. The two authors of the report are David Ranson (below, left) and Iain West (centre); the first is an associate professor of forensic pathology and deputy director of the Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine; the second is the deputy state coroner at the Coroners Court of Victoria. This is the official agency in charge of receiving all 27 Australian victims of the MH17 crash. The Victoria state coroner, Judge Ian Gray (right), is also in charge of conducting investigations and inquests on 18 victims who were residents of Victoria, and who have been returned for burial to families in the state.
Reporting “the features of the remains”, Ranson and West say that “fire damage” was pervasive: “all patterns [including]…complete incineration, partial incineration, unburned”. The injuries they identify include those which destroyed the body “variably” and “completely”. There were, they report, “massive internal injuries with little external signs” and “no haemorrhage round fractures”. According to sources involved in the MH17 investigation, this means there was no blood pressure, and the victims were dead before they hit the ground.
Most importantly, the Australian experts report: “missile injuries [were] rare but present.” An Australian expert source who is familiar with the evidence covered by the Ranson-West report but who spoke on background, warns: “Don’t confuse the meaning of the word missile. It means flying objects which strike the body.” It is not known whether Ranson and West were shown X-rays or CT scans of the Australian victims. Their full report can be read here.
When MH17 was downed over eastern Ukrainian territory on July 17, 2014, a total of 298 people were on board. To date, remains of 296 have been recovered and officially identified, according to Dutch reports. The nationalities of the victims, reported from airline releases, are Dutch, 193; Malaysian, 43; Australian, 27; Indonesian, 12; British, 10; German, 4; Belgian, 4; Philippino, 3; New Zealanders, 1; and Canadians, 1. The identities of the 2 unrecovered individuals have not been released.
The Australian report spells out the problems of gathering and authenticating evidence in Ukraine, where there was “no forensic control”; where the international air crash guidelines issued by Interpol weren’t followed; and where there was “inappropriate interim storage and body preservation.” When the bodies reached the Dutch military barracks, where investigation took place, there was, according to Ranson and West, “CT scanning of contents of coffin.” They describe the triage procedure followed: “If suspicious foreign objects [identified on the scans], Proceed to Limited Forensic Autopsy. If no suspicious foreign objects – Proceed to DVI [Disaster Victim Identification] examination area.”
This reveals that CT scans were done of all remains, and thus a CT scan has been recorded for every victim whose body has been recovered and repatriated or transferred to the next of kin. There is no reference to X-rays at this stage of the Dutch procedure; they may have been taken during the “limited forensic autopsy”. One reason for suspecting that X-rays appearing in Ukrainian media are fakes is that the Dutch procedures used CT scans instead.
Ranson and West explain the steps followed for the main nationalities and the kinds of testing and evidence collected for identification.
The Australian report does not reveal what evidence was gathered in the “limited forensic autopsy”. But Ranson and West reveal that “suspicious foreign objects” detected in the CT scans as “missile injuries” were “rare”. Just how rare has been admitted, inadvertently, by the Dutch prosecutor Westerbeke.
What is certain, medical pathologists say, is that the Dutch autopsied remains in order to remove what the Australians are calling “suspicious foreign objects” when they were spotted. The timing of the repatriation process also indicates that Westerbeke had taken control of these “objects” and had tested them, assaying the metals and comparing the results with munitions specifications, by the time in October when the last repatriations to Australia took place. There can be no doubt, says a Dutch source, that “by then Westerbeke knew exactly what metal or metals he was dealing with.”
When the Dutch DVI process was completed, and to ensure that remains were reliably identified before repatriation, the Australian report says there were “documents and identification label checks.” For each individual, these materials included “CT scan and photography.”
Australian sources report these materials were then attached to each coffin for repatriation. All the Australian coffins were flown to Melbourne, transported to the Victorian coroner’s morgue, and re-certified. Those victims whose residence and next of kin were in other states were flown on to those destinations.
Australian sources say the Australian forensic and coronial court process is “alive and ongoing, but not yet started.” The sources say also “there have been meetings with the Australian Federal Police” (AFP), and this process is also continuing. Included in this police and government intelligence investigation are the Australian pathologists who worked on the DVI line in Holland, as well as other experts. The AFP has already collected a dossier of evidence, covered by a summary brief, which is circulating for discussion at meetings the AFP has called with the experts. This process and the brief are secret; some of the experts and investigators involved in the ante-mortem and identification process have been excluded. According to one expert, “there is enormous variation among the victims. Lots of possibilities [on cause of death] are being canvassed.”
Victorian coroner Gray was asked to say whether he has decided that the inquests he will hold will be restricted to identification of the victims, or will be extended to cause of death and forensic issues. Inside sources believe Gray will be guided by the AFP report. Gray was asked to say whether he will “be taking and considering evidence of victim injuries, including X-rays, CT scans, and reports of the Dutch authorities (LTFO, JIT, DSB) which accompanied the remains on repatriation? Will [he] be taking testimony from the Australian Federal Police (AFP)?”
His spokesman, Nola Los, replied: “Judge Gray will need to approve the release of any information relating to details regarding the Victorian victims of MH17. Unfortunately he will not be available to do so until next week.”
Los and Gray confirm the Australian count of 27 victims in all; 18 Victorians. Their cases are “open”, Los says, “that an inquest date is being considered for later this year.”
In the UK, where press reporting of the alleged Buk missile attack is widespread – as it is in Australia and Canada — there is a similar blackout in the coronial system. Altogether, 10 British nationals or residents have been identified on board the aircraft. However, because some were dual nationals or resident in other countries, the UK media have reported just 4 burials in the UK. Others may have been buried in Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa.
The government in London has announced that “special arrangements were made by the Chief Coroner [Judge Peter Thornton QC], following the Malaysian Airlines Flight MH17 disaster in Ukraine in July 2014. Coroners have a duty to investigate violent or unnatural deaths which occur overseas where the body is returned to England and Wales. In this case, with the consent of all families concerned, all repatriated bodies were received first in one central coroner area where one senior coroner co-ordinated all arrangements with the assistance of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the police. The coroner’s co-ordinated investigations will be subject to the outcome of the extensive Dutch inquiries.”
The coroner in charge is Catherine Mason (right), who heads the coroners court in Leicester. A lawyer and nurse by training, she previously served in junior coroner posts in other regions, and has been chief coroner in Leicester for 6 years. A check of her court records for the MH17 victims’ names reveals that on September 22, 2014, the inquest into Richard Mayne’s death was opened, then immediately adjourned without a new date. A month later, on October 27, the inquest into the death of John Alder was also suspended. The legal authority cited for Mason’s action was Schedule 1 Paragraph 5 of the Coroners and Justice Act of 2009. This provides carte blanche: “a senior coroner may suspend an investigation under this Part of this Act into a person’s death in any case if it appears to the coroner that it would be appropriate to do so.”
Last week Mason was asked how many MH17 victim inquests she is conducting and their individual names. What circumstances, she was asked, “have you deemed to be appropriate for suspension in these cases? Have you delegated authority for evidence gathering and forensic testing in these cases to another body, British or foreign? To whom has this delegation been made, and on what authority?” Finally, Mason was asked what post-mortem or autopsy evidence of the victims’ remains she is holdng. Mason refuses to answer. A source at her court says Mason is deferring “while inquiries are conducted abroad.” The source implies the British Government has decided to rely on the Dutch for evidence.
In The Netherlands, the aviation accident body, the DSB, published its preliminary report in September 2014. For details of what evidence it identified and what conclusions it drew, read this. The day after the DSB release, the principal Russian official responsible for Russian participation in the Dutch investigation, Oleg Storchevoy (below), Deputy Head of the Federal Air Transport Agency (RosAviation), said the DSB had missed crucial evidence.
“The investigation should further study the data from the radars and post mortems of the victims. All these steps are widely regarded as a must in civil aviation and no preliminary conclusions are usually made before completing all of them. Regrettably, significant time has been wasted, and some of the data will be unavailable – I now refer to the remains of the victim’s bodies and the plane’s debris which are not secured enough and located in the zone of an armed conflict. Nevertheless, this work must be done to ensure a speedy and unbiased investigation into the cause of the crash.”
Storchevoy was telling the DSB what it was already admitting in the preliminary report. On page 4, the report claimed it would include the “result of the pathological investigations” in “further work…to substantiate the factual information.” At page 32 the DSB repeated the promise that for “Further Investigations” it would analyse “results of pathological investigation”.
On September 25, RosAviation released the text of the letter Storchevoy had sent to DSB itemizing the evidence the DSB investigation should cover for its final report. Here is the 24-point release. Point 3 is a priority for evidence: “Pathological examination of the dead passengers and crew members, including the presence of submunitions and other foreign bodies and substances.”
At DSB Chairman Muller was asked to confirm he had read Storchevoy’s letter, and to say what reply he had sent. He refuses to say. He was then asked: “When the remains were released to relatives and repatriated, what death certificate was issued by the Dutch authorities? What was given as cause of death? Were X-rays taken of all victims’ remains? What other pathology tests were conducted on remains and tissue samples? What official documents accompanied the remains on repatriation, and did these include X-rays and other pathological investigation results?”
Muller’s spokesman Sara Vernooij replied, saying “as long as the investigation is ongoing we can’t give any information or details. The Dutch Safety Board will publish the final report on 13 October, before that we won’t issue any information concerning investigation material or sources.” But that cannot be true, she and Muller were told, since in recent days the DSB has issued news releases disclosing “information or details” on the purported discovery and investigation of Buk missile parts; and on the manner and consciousness of victims ahead of their deaths.
Vernooij then conceded these were “information or details”, but she now claims: “I can’t give any more details than we already gave.” As for the questions to Muller about what evidence had been collected before repatriation, and what went on the Dutch death certificates, Vernooij said: “The repatriation and the identification is done by the forensic team of LTFO, spokesperson is Mr. Fransman (email@example.com ).”
The Landelijk Team Forensische Opsporing (National Forensic Investigations Team, LTFO) in the Netherlands is a police and military organ of the Dutch Government, headed by Arie De Bruin (right). In investigating the MH17 victims’ remains, the Dutch were joined by a German officer of the Bundeskriminalamt (BKA), the Federal Criminal Police, and the equivalent AFP officer from Australia.
According to a Malaysian government release, the MH17 victim identification operation was “assisted by Executive Officers of (a) logistic and accommodation, (b) Ante-mortem (AM) Process, (c) post-mortem (PM) Process, (d) Reconciliation process and (e) Release Process . The other countries involved in the MH17 operation were Malaysia, Belgium, United Kingdom, Australia, Germany and Indonesia. The team leaders of the 6 countries were officially appointed as executive officers in the DVI MH17 Organisation. A team of international forensic experts led by Dutchman Gert Wibbelink of the Dutch National Forensic Investigations Team, or LTFO, was handed control of the investigation in Kharkiv. The LTFO has eight staff members in Ukraine, including Mr. Wibbelink. “We have been collecting DNA samples, hair, fingerprints, information about scars or tattoos or moles,” from the victims’ first-degree relatives, Jos van Roo, the LTFO team leader in the Netherlands, said in an interview.”
For LTFO, spokesman Jean Fransman was asked on Friday whether the LTFO procedures for the MH17 victims included an autopsy to determine cause of death and find shrapnel, bullet or other metal fragments; and to attach CT scan, X-ray and other pathological test results to the repatriated remains. Fransman claimed: “I’m not the spokesperson for the LTFO. But I will forward your questions to my colleagues.” The first point was false; the second, a deadend. When informed that he had been identified as LTFO spokesman by the DSB and on the signature line of his own email, and that he was making a record of misinformation and evasion by LTFO, Fransman stopped responding.
Fransman, like his boss de Bruin, did not know that the questions they refuse to answer have already been published by the Australians. This is the only public disclosure by LTFO of what it has been doing.
The remaining Dutch official to be asked the questions the Australians answered last year is Westerbeke of the Joint Investigation Team (JIT). The Dutch, Ukrainian, Australian and Belgian governments have announced that the JIT is bound by its founding agreement on August 7, 2014, to keep confidential the evidence it has been finding. Westerbeke’s record is one of leaking to the Dutch and German media, and to the BBC, details DSB claims to be withholding until next month. Westerbeke has made a record too of leaking one detail, and then contradicting it later.
According to this graphic, published by Westerbeke’s men, one of the key forms of evidence in his criminal investigation is “metal particles from victims’ bodies”.
On September 12, 2014, Westerbeke told a Dutch paper, De Volkskrant, that metal fragments had been found in victims’ bodies. According to this report, Westerbeke (and a police spokesman, Patricia Zorko) counted 500 samples that had been taken; this appears to be a count of what the Australians are calling the “limited forensic autopsy”. Explaining why the Australians have reported “missile injuries rare but present”, Westerbeke told the local newspaper there were 25 “metalen deeltjes” – that’s to say, “metal particles”, just as Westerbeke had put into his chart. If 25 of 500 samples had tested positive for metal, that was a rate of 0.05%. Another way of estimating the rarity of the metal found is to estimate that the “particles” were recorded in 0.08% of the identified bodies or body parts. That appears to be a very small incidence in a jet aircraft struck from outside the fuselage.
The Ranson-West report confirms that for timing, these pieces of evidence had been collected early in the triage process at Hilversum barracks, possibly weeks before Westerbeke leaked the details. The DSB failed to mention them in its September report. Westerbeke himself omitted to say what testing he had already done on the “metal particles” to identify the metal.
A BBC version of what Westerbeke said on September 12, 2014, adds detail: “At a news conference in Rotterdam on Friday, Fred Westerbeke…said that the investigation was particularly interested in the origin of 25 pieces of iron [sic], drawn from 500 samples. ‘The most likely scenario was that the plane was shot down from the ground,’ he said. ‘If we can establish that this iron is coming from such a missile, that is important information of course,’ he said. ‘At this moment we don’t know that, but that is what we are investigating.’”
Two other reporters listening to Westerbeke detected ambiguity in what he was actually claiming about the metal evidence. A DutchNews website claimed to have heard Westerbeke say the metal was found “between the wreckage [on the ground] and in some of the bodies, which could come from a missile.” A Reuters reporter claimed the metal particles had been found in passenger luggage, as well as in bodies. The location of both Westerbeke omitted to say, concealing thereby whether they were concentrated in a pattern of shrapnel, and whether the metal samples were identical in all 25 cases.
A month later Westerbeke tried again, this time for German consumption. On October 27, 2014, Der Spiegel quoted Westerbeke as conceding the “Metallfragmente” could be “shrapnel from a Buk missile, possibly also parts of the aircraft itself.” Between Westerbeke’s two press leaks, the reporters had failed to notice that Westerbeke had taken 45 days not to confirm the nature of the metal he was holding. But he was conceding the original leak was losing its initial meaning. If the metal had been tested and compared against the aluminium, titanum and other alloys in the aircraft wings, walls and floor, then Westerbeke must have known whether “iron” was ruled in, or out.
Nine months then elapsed before Westerbeke started leaking again. Here he is in an interview obligingly scripted in advance by the BCC, and broadcast on July 17. This time Westerbeke omitted to say anything at all about “metal”—and the BBC forgot to ask. Notwithstanding, there was no hesitation in London to headline the story: “MH17 investigator: Missile strike most credible scenario”.
Last week Westerbeke was asked to explain where all the missile metal had flown. Specifically, the Dutch policeman was asked questions to which the Australian coronial investigators had already revealed the answers. “Were X-rays taken of all victims’ remains? What other pathology tests were conducted on remains and tissue samples? What official documents accompanied the remains on repatriation, and did these include X-rays and other pathological investigation results? What release to any party of the investigation, including next of kin, has there been of these data, the so-called metal particle data?”
Westerebeke refuses to answer. This is the black hole the Dutch have created in their own investigation, but they are unable to fill it with “iron”, and they cannot explain how the alleged detonation of a Buk warhead could release so little recovered shrapnel; possibly none at all.
Seems at least a few gallons of vodka was consumed writing this
Has your Navy found that Ruskie sub yet? I hope it is slightly more competent than the British Navy, which looked for the evil Ruskie sub that dragged a fishing trawler and found…itself. Trawler crew ‘caught up in submarine war games’:
MoD admits British submarine dragged fishing trawler through Irish Sea:
I am sure that the Royal Navy deeply regretted the need to come clean after denying that it was responsible. Care to estimate how many gallons of single malt were consumed writing the original denial?
Don’t forget the Russian sub in Swedish waters which was revealed to be a World War I Russian submarine after the defense spending vote in Sweden. At least it was Ruskies.
The timing of the vote and revelation was purely coincidental, citizen NotTimothyGeithner, nothing to see there. It’s a Western democracy we are talking about here, and a Scandinavian one at that…
World War I submarine? I missed that. Could you please provide a link?
http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/07/28/us-sweden-submarine-idUSKCN0Q21OY20150728 . Took all of 15 seconds to find.
Yes, I read the same thing.
Thanks. Obviously I used the wrong combination of words in my search.
I confused the stories. The suspected sub did turn out to be a civilian ship, but a few months later, Swedish divers did find a Tsarist Era submarine. Given the Finnish reports and the obvious UK and Swedish frauds, NATO is pushing a propaganda message against its own citizens.
Let’s give them the benefit of the doubt. It could be that they had a few gallons of Svedka and started seeing things. That Carl Bildt, he just don’t know his vodka limit. It would be shocking to contemplate that this whole brouhaha was meant to land SAAB a billion dollar contract to build A26 submarines for the Swedish Navy…
It’s fairly obvious what this article is pointing to; a cover up of the lack of evidence. Many cases are resolved by a lack of certain types of evidence.
Next up, what about the radar evidence? The area of the crash was a war zone. We are expected to believe that no one at all was closely watching the skies above the Donbass? Who was the Wile E Coyote “Super Genius” that approved a commercial airliners’ transit of a war zone known to have functional anti air missile systems in place? That person should be shot for pure incompetence at the least. He or she is responsible for 298 deaths.
Exactly – Where’s all that wonderful SIGINT we are happily paying billions in taxpayers money for? The sky must be literally packed with satellites and spy-crafts. Doesn’t any of that fancy high tech kit *work* after all!?
Everyone should know the risk: It is not the first time that an airliner has been shot down over Ukraine by some (I presume drunk, bored and incompetent) Ukrainian missile crew. That was in peace time. When there is an active war going one someone is definitely pushing the odds. Like “someone” did with KAL 007?
If we had evidence of the separatists involvement, Sam Powers would be at the UN doing her best Adlai Stevenson impression with posters instead of a slide show just to make a point.
You echo my feelings. Here we hapless rubes in the USA are paying gazillion$ for all this spy crap, and whadda we have to show for it?? Crickets.
Where is all the BigSpy money going? Could it be, amongst others, straight into David Petraeus’ pockets?? Gah.
Well, then. The Ministry of Truth confirms, of course we are at war with EurAsia. The cause is a WMD slam dunk!
There is more than a little cover up going on here.
Where is the Kiev air traffic controller? In Ukranian custody
The cockpit voice and flight data recorders? Farnborough AFB
The photographic evidence of a BUK launch (a 22km long vapour trail)? Nada
And as for real radar data, NATO was just finishing up Sea Breeze naval exercises and the best the US could do was a google map from 2008.
This stuff is getting too easy, war criminal war monger fascists already won the “truthiness” battle with this one, obviously the Shiny New Boogieman (Putin) did it. People will glaze over with the minutiae of metal fragment types and lack of chains of custody…the only important thing is to keep the distractions coming while they gin up a new World War trough for the fat piggies to feed at
The 2 obvious omissions are 1) the satellite imagery that NATO refuses to release, and 2) the examination of the numerous round holes that can be seen in the wreckage of the front cabin. Any combat pilot will attest that these holes were made by 50Cal cannon which indicates that the take down, at altitude, was air-to-air,not ground-to-air.
And what about those precious aircraft “black boxes” that were the topic of much hunting and speculation, and which were supposed to record incontrovertible evidence about the event?
They were recovered, sent to the UK, analyzed, the investigative team made a “preliminary” report showing that black boxes records indicate a “sudden massive decompression”.
And that was it.
We never heard about them ever again. No final report. No details.
Round holes? This picture shows irregularly shaped holes with a variety of sizes:
Any combat pilot will attest that these holes were made by 50Cal cannon which indicates that the take down, at altitude, was air-to-air,not ground-to-air.
A lot of rhetoric here.
Where is the spectrographic analysis of the iron shrapnel? That could be done in a day. If nothing else, elemental analysis could eliminate possible origins of the shrapnel.
…said that the investigation was particularly interested in the origin of 25 pieces of iron [sic], drawn from 500 samples. ‘The most likely scenario was that the plane was shot down from the ground,’ he said. ‘If we can establish that this iron is coming from such a missile, that is important information of course,’ he said. ‘At this moment we don’t know that, but that is what we are investigating.’”
Your second quote was from a September 12, 2014 BBC article. A year later, the analysis is still not complete? Or is it the case that the findings are not necessarily advantageous to geostrategic and propaganda objectives? Really, how long before this report gets published, and why the confusing terminology?
A year later, the analysis is still not complete? Or is it the case that the findings are not necessarily advantageous to geostrategic and propaganda objectives? Really, how long before this report gets published, and why the confusing terminology?
All valid rhetorical questions.
My original conjecture still stands, the ballistic damage and fragments should tell the tale. Or at least objeectvely rule out scenarios.
September 10, 2014 at 6:06 pm
3. ‘High-energy objects’ brought the flight down
“.. The DSB investigators have not been able to recover or study any of the objects that penetrated the plane…”
Its all out there and the metallurgy/elemental analysis can tell a story. Don’t need much, possibly as little as ppm levels of foreign material smeared into damaged aircraft skin/structure to characterize the source..
rhetoricalquestions. There was nothing rhetorical about them. It doesn’t take this long to perform the analysis, certainly when you want to nail Evil Putin and mount his head over your fireplace.
Rhetorical to me, as in
asked in order to produce an effect or to make a statement rather than to elicit information
A year later, the analysis is still not complete?
Or is it the case that the findings are not necessarily advantageous to geostrategic and propaganda objectives?
how long before this report gets published (?)
and why the confusing terminology?
Which terminology? “What the DSB report means now hinges — government officials, pathologists and lawyers say — on four lookalike words with fundamentally different meanings. The “first” is onderdelen (parts) which DSB officials have been using to refer to a Buk ground-to-air rocket. The second term is “metallfragmente” and “metalen deeltjes”, which Westerbeke and his spokesman have been using interchangeably to mean metal from outside the MH17, and also from the fuselage itself. The third key word is “missile”, which Australian coronial investigators say refers, not to a Buk or any other type of explosive ordnance, but to “flying objects which strike the body”. The fourth term is “raket”, which Dutch investigators, including those engaged in the official identification of the MH17 victims, say applies to air-to-ground rockets like Buk, as well as to air-to-air, infrared and other rockets fired by aircraft.”
I am always an advocate of term definition, at the top of any paper particularly when multiple languages are involved.
Use of the word Missile should be contextually defined to this end, but it did not confuse me. I interpret it to be an object with kinetic energy, consistent w/ the English definition of the word.
I interpret metal fragments as a generalized term that would include ordinance, bits of ordinance or aircraft/aircraft content debris that is metallic.
raket, I have no idea.
So it didn’t confuse you. Well, it’s not like I ever thought of you as a dummy. However, most people will eventually get this report through the filter of the MSM and its penchant for the sensational titles and 10second soundbite. Definitions, if provided, will be buried deep where the short attention span keeps them safe from intruding upon the audience. ‘Missile hit Malaysian Airplane Passengers’, enough said.
.50 cal on a fighter plane is WWII armament, modern fighters have 20mm or bigger cannons. That’s a 60% wider caliber, much bigger holes (and a lot more energy). Not sure the few round-ish holes in the piece of wreckage, along with all the shrapnel-looking ones, point to a cannon.
And isn’t the BUK an air-burst missile that sprays the target with shrapnel (or rods a couple of which may leave round holes)?
We mopes dream of “justice,” and they say, “Let the eat impunity.” With a side dish of dissimulation, and a platter of Narrative for our “just desserts.”
Good to see the, what’s Swedish for “hasbara?” in first position…
No truth, no consequences, sh_t in large quantities will happen in the heavily armed, sneaky-pete-ized political economy that appears to be the best us naked apes can do, collectively… One tiny example among so many: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iran_Air_Flight_655
I do not get this:
25 out of 500 makes a 5% rate, or, am I missing something?
I think Helmer must have conflated probability (0.05) and percentage (5%).
This situation is too political for the truth to be accessible to the public. I haven’t looked into it, however I would be very interested to find out some of the history of those assigned to the investigation, and how they were chosen. Often scientifically inclined people are not particularly keen on the idea of moderating the truth, especially for political purposes, however I accept that integrity has been following a downward trend in most fields for quite a while now. I also imagine the non-disclosure forms they would have signed contained some serious penalties for leaking.
For the record, I’m of the belief that with the amount of propaganda in the west against Russia, if there was solid evidence against the Novorussians, we would have had it in our faces 24/7 already.
think Helmer must have conflated probability (0.05) and percentage (5%).
yes, he might have been getting writers braincramps at that point…
This situation is too political for the truth to be accessible to the public
yes, that could well be the sensibilities of TPTB. A conclusion begs a remedy. Who wants to go there actually?
Good catch, your figures are the correct ones. Please, don’t make the common mistake of holding the younger professional classes to ‘obsolete’ 1950s and 60s educational standards.
Secondly, as I read somewhere, if the cannon attack theory is correct, the interceptors would most likely attack from the front, so as to disable the pilots. That would limit projectile damage to the very front section of the aircraft. A cone shaped dispersal of submunitions would result. If an anti air missile were the culprit, the submunition field of action would be a sphere. This shape field would damage a larger section of the aircraft.
Also, the 500 figure refers to bodies and body parts. As mentioned above by andyb, no word of the peculiar holes in the pilots cabin wreckage by the “official” investigation. Each item may be small in itself, but as they add up…
Plus, we haven’t even got to the part yet about who launched the BUK.
Plus, as I mentioned above, who approves commercial airliners entering war zones in the first place? I suspect that there is much more here than meets the eye.
I recall that they were directed there by Uki air traffic control. But Big Brother may require that we forget that.
The Captain of the aircraft is ultimately responsible for the route.
The Captain of the aircraft is ultimately responsible for the route.
A commercial pilot is flying a route established by the Carrier which has a backroom organization assessing various circumstances ie weather, fuel (“carbon-footprint”), schedule, range etc etc.
Ultimately it’s a collaborative judgment call about safety and economics. A Pilot in Command can certainly request reroutes due to developing circumstances/conditions, say headwinds or thunderstorms, volcanic eruptions. nuclear plant (!) failures, surface to air missle attacks (!).
Making non-collaborative en-route decisions, say, not wanting to fly over a “Conflict area” with no supplemental developments on the ground that justify a change in the risk assessment is probably a straight forward way to get grounded and then fired.
With regard to MH-17 taking a fatally dangerous route, that is solid 20-20 hindsight.. Was it fatally dangerous the day before, an hour before? Apparently that was not the operative risk assessment.
There are something in excess of 40 “Conflict Zones” right now and whomever is responsible for making those flyover decisions has a very bad job IMO.
First, how many of these ‘conflict zones’ has combatants armed with high altitude anti air systems. The BUK is not a MANPAD. It’s a highly complex unit that requires sophisticated support, command, and control to function.
Second, the air above the Donbass has been dangerous to fly through for the Ukie Air Force for the duration. Agreed, most shoot downs are with MANPADS during low level flight and landing and take off maneuvers. Ukie possession and deployment of BUK weapons systems in the region was known to one and all. Even the Novorussian “Rebels” were rumoured to have a few BUKs of their own.
Agreeing that Ukie transport aircraft were shot down in the Donbass skies, at any altitude, established the fact that someone at the least was targeting non-offensive aircraft.
The final nail in this coffin, to me, is the obfuscation and misdirection engaged in by the investigative teams’ public information staffs. Pieces of metal were recovered from bodies some time ago, and no announcement of the composition of those fragments? Pull the other one.
First, how many of these ‘conflict zones’ has combatants armed with high altitude anti air systems. The BUK is not a MANPAD. It’s a highly complex unit that requires sophisticated support, command, and control to function.
No idea, Probably more than I care to think about, but as a commercial flight passenger I am thinking in the back of my mind more in terms of the possibility of an emergency landing, say when the Airbus pitot tube heater fails and the plane decides to start powering down to land.
Agreeing that Ukie transport aircraft were shot down in the Donbass skies, at any altitude, established the fact that someone at the least was targeting non-offensive aircraft.
What could be a mil transport is at best ambiguous to someone with loose rules of engagement that wants to shoot down military aircraft
who approves commercial airliners entering war zones in the first place?
NOTAMs are the method of communicating “advisories” including those regarding “Conflict Zones”
Ultimately it is in the interest of the Carrier to protect their flights.
Cui Bono? I don’t know, but this points to cover up. Again.
How about a short summary paragraph stating what the conclusions were,
That way readers don’t have to wade through the whole thing to come to conclusions?
i.e. “Evidence is possibly being hidden that something other than a Buki missile destroyed the plane”.
Helmer does like to write in a Baroque manner. I’ll see if I can give an overview next time.
Silliness. The separatists claimed the attack. The Russian propagandists are no less embarrassing than the American propagandists.
You could at least link to the fake recording produced by the SBU. Take some pride in your work man.
I love the photo showing what was said to be “separatists deploying Buk missiles in the region” until someone actually translated the street sign in the background of the photo
Link? One un-verified tweet, I assume you’re referring to.
One of the last things on the media before this was all hushed up was an account of the action going on in the Netherlands at the airport where MH17 departed. Sounded like a deliberate set up to frame Russia. How could so many things go wrong on their own, and culminate in the plane being shot down via air to air attack? Bad and blatant black ops. So naturally the Dutch are the biggest perps. At this point they are not framing Russia anymore, they are protecting themselves from being exposed. And everyone who colluded with them. Such as NATO.
Bingo. Farmers in France and Belgium are already engaged in creative protests. German business is outraged. This is with the full blown NATO propaganda. If the sanctions were pushed and the government’s knew it was bs, the local citizenry is liable to explode.
What I think happened is this:
Our “Friends and Allies”, the Ukrainian Government, figured that they needed something that would push NATO to get involved in a war with Russia on their behalf. Therefore, being crude hicks with no cultural understanding at all, they routed the plane over Ukraine and they arranged to have it should down.
Simply figuring that westerners being exactly as bat-shit crazy and emotion-driven as themselves, so therefore we would leap right in, no “blyats” given.
Sorry, Ukraine, but “the west” does not think like that at all (Maybe it would have worked with some gang-bangers in Malmö or Tingbjerg, your kind of people, the kind of people we try to put in jail here).
The general population … nah. We are *very* suspicious after Iraq, and, we don’t particularly care about Ukraine yet; Ukraine are still people we just met and really only after they fell on hard times – like that kind of family or long-lost friend who suddenly show up after one wins the lottery. Trust takes time and you have to give something away firs to get something else; it’s a gift-culture here in the North.
The immediate concern is: “What has Ukraine done for us, lately” – before we decide to care more about Ukraine. We don’t care about what our politicians say about it, they are known to be lying filth right across the entire political spectrum.
Now, There is absolutely no way that a war zone right in “our back yard” is not instrumented with full spectrum military surveillance – contrarily to our collegial jokes about “national security being about keeping the taxpayers in the dark”, back in the day when one was designing some of the kit, this equipment works, the tech is solid, it does an MTBF of better than 50000 hours as specified. No way *all of it* was down!
In addition, at least the NSA, GCHQ, DSGE and the BND will have tasked agents and electronic data collection to be all over the Ukrainian leadership. It’s only prudent.
So, Our Leadership Knows. Which is A Problem. That’s secrets shared with hundreds of people. In addition, every “spy channel” on the western hemisphere has collected bits of information, this is bound to leak eventually. Then people would want to know WHY we are funding a bunch of gangsters who are doing drive-by’s on our airliners? Why we still keep NATO around, since the last 15 years NATO seems to be more about getting us into wars than avoiding them as originally planned. Not to mention all the businesses going down the drain because of lost business with Russia. People are pissed off about that too.
The near certainty of a future leak drives the messy and somewhat incompetent cover-up (word plays, really?) – nobody dares committing themselves fully to the task because they may get exposed and then, they will get nailed in the press, disowned by their handlers, and never work again because that’s how we treat whistle-blowers – OTOH – they are also “under orders” so they must be “doing something”.
I am looking forward to the leak(s). I got some Cognac, Cigars and even Popcorn for the occasion.
The irony is that because of the western powers massive investment in and obsession with “full spectrum surveillance” the details are recorded forever and the whole sorry mess will be leaked eventually. Hence the half-baked coverup.
In the good olde days, before the global panopticon, it would be reasonable to just conclude that “some idiot shot down an airliner” – and none would be the wiser. After all, this has happened before in Ukraine.
This is just like the 9/11 Commission Report, the Warren Commission Report, and so many other lies emanating from the criminals who are running (ruining) the world.
The Ukraine civil war has settled down into trench warfare. This is a result of Ukraine never controlling the skies over the combat zone even as they routed passenger flights over the Donbass. This will drag on for decades like the Iraq War as long as there is money to be made unless a black swan event forces the West partition the warring ethnic groups. The flood of refugees into the EU may well force the settlement of the Syrian and Ukraine wars or blow the world up.
I am with ambrit. The Satellite and Signal’s intelligence plus the forensic analysis of the wreckage and the souls on board must specify the exact chain of events the brought down the 777. If Russia was in any way responsible, corporate media would be trumpeting it. That the crash report has not been released 14 months after the fact is one of the proofs that the West is intent on regime change in the Kremlin no matter the risk of provoking World War III.
The report will be published in October. This is a long and rambling post about gaping holes in the evidence, about a report that has not yet been published,and were the responsible people are postponing their responses until after the publication.
Just wait a month and read the report itself. Perhaps it is indeed flimsy and distorted. But it’s odd to conclude that now, without the actual report available.