Stonewall: Russia reportedly helping rebels destroy crash evidence

posted at 8:31 am on July 19, 2014 by Jazz Shaw

International reporters are calling it the biggest crime scene in the world this morning. And if anyone is expecting a normal, NTSB style investigation of the plane wreckage, that’s probably not going to happen.

Pro-Russia separatist groups in eastern Ukraine are hastily covering up all links to the Buk missile battery suspected to have been used to shoot down the Malaysia Airlines passenger plane, according to western-based defence and intelligence specialists.

As the UN security council called for a “full, thorough independent international investigation” into the downing of the plane, concern that a cover-up was under way was fuelled by a standoff at part of the crash site between observers from the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) and rebel gunmen, which ended with a warning shot being fired.

Postings on rebel websites immediately after the crash boasted of having shot down what they claimed was an Antonov Ukrainian military transport plane, but these have since been deleted.

And in case Putin still wants to continue his innocent, “who me?” routine, the AP is throwing cold water on that one as well.

Ukraine accused Russia on Saturday of assisting separatist rebels in destroying evidence at the crash site of a Malaysia Airlines plane shot down with 298 people onboard.

The government in Kiev said militiamen have removed 38 bodies from the crash site and have taken them to the rebel-held city of Donetsk. It says the bodies were transported with the assistance of specialists with distinct Russian accents.

The rebels are also “seeking large transports to carry away plane fragments to Russia,” the Ukrainian government said in a statement.

This is on top of video being released showing the rocket launcher used in the attack allegedly being hustled back over the border into Mother Russia. To add insult to injury, CNN reports that the pro-Russian rebels have allegedly already been looting the dead. Just sitting and watching the live reports come in from the field it seems clear that there is a completely separate crime taking place apart from the initial horror of having the plane shot down. The miles long debris field where Flight 17 came down is, by current reports, still littered with hundreds of bodies. Other accounts indicate that some of the bodies have been removed with no clear idea where they are being taken, but they may have gone to Russia. None of the normal protocols are being followed at this point, and questions remain about where the plane’s black boxes are and if they will be turned over for proper processing.

This has already turned into an international outrage, but what will be done about it? I would hope that there is a limit as to how much pressure Putin thinks his country can sustain before he has to come to the table and behave decently. Following the unofficial war in Ukraine there didn’t seem to be enough unity around the world in terms of holding Russia accountable, possibly out of fear of their reprisal and military capability. This was probably aided by a general sense that this was a “local issue” to be sorted out between the Ukrainians and the Russians and a lack of interest in yet another global conflict. (Understandable to a degree.)

But this sort of humanitarian crisis – particularly the urgent need to recover the bodies of the victims and provide relief to their families – may bring enough pressure on Putin to force him into acting decently. At least we can hope so. Failing that, I’m not sure what other options are left. Sanctions certainly don’t seem to be impressing Putin, and I don’t think there are many sane people who actually want to see a shooting war erupt with Russia.


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Schadenfreude on July 19, 2014 at 1:26 PM

Define international outrage for me.

Cindy Munford on July 19, 2014 at 1:57 PM

I’m not saying that anyone in govt actually wants to do it, but how might a govt go about synchronizing its population’s views?

And don’t even mention false flag operations, because we all know that there are no such things. Nor is there any such thing as “wagging the dog.” That’s just a movie.

Akzed on July 19, 2014 at 11:48 AM

Okay, it was a false flag operation. So where’s Obama, Biden, Kerry, Reid, and Pelosi calling for war?

HINT: They’re not. Obama’s hiding under the desk, as usual. The whole White House reaction to the crisis has been to say as little as possible and hope it all goes away. It’s being spun as a “tragedy” and the people who do want harsher measures taken are being derided as warmongering nutcases.

People who think this is a “neocon plot” are crazy. The people who want an aggressive US foreign policy have been out of power since 2006. Events in the world often happen entirely independently of America; not everything bad is a “CIA false flag.”

Doomberg on July 19, 2014 at 2:10 PM

I suspect that you could get some support for better arming the Ukrainians and giving them some air support in the name of eradicating forces that threaten international air corridors for commercial aircraft. If the Russians attack NATO air assets, they will be taking a lot bigger bite than just seizing Crimea from a military basket case.

KW64 on July 19, 2014 at 2:14 PM

KW64 on July 19, 2014 at 2:14 PM

Ukraine joining NATO is just the casus belli Putin needs for full military intervention. Russia will occupy half the country before you can say “Taras Bulba.”

The central pillar of Russian political-military policy is preventing strong hostile powers from positioning themselves on its borders. (They don’t care about impotent mini-states like the Baltics–they know the US won’t fight for them regardless of NATO membership.) This is the basis for their support of the Donbass separatists: stop baiting the Bear or your country will be carved up. The Ukraine is a medium sized nation that could serve as a perfect invasion route into Russia. Russia will respect its sovereignty and probably call off support for the rebels if they are guaranteed that Ukraine is at least neutral between Europe/US and Russia.

Escalation (i.e., beefing up the Ukrainian military) as you propose will mean counter-escalation by Russia in favor of the Rebels. It’s a game we can’t win. The Russians are right there with much more powerful forces. The only way to deal with this civil war is by statesmanship and diplomacy–working out a solution that can satisfy both sides. Sadly, we don’t have any statesmen right now. We need Metternich and a Congress of Vienna; instead we have Obama, Kerry, Jen Psaki, and hashtags.

spiritof61 on July 19, 2014 at 2:41 PM

Pro-Russia separatist groups in eastern Ukraine are hastily covering up all links to the Buk missile battery suspected to have been used to shoot down the Malaysia Airlines passenger plane, according to western-based defence and intelligence specialists.

I have expect most media “journalists” would love to be on scene helping… after all, they are the experts in covering up truth…

dominigan on July 19, 2014 at 3:04 PM

I envision Obama sucking his thumb as he lays in the fetal position with his head on Mooch’s lap sobbing uncontrollably.

HiJack on July 19, 2014 at 3:06 PM

The media is all pumped up over Putin: “People are dead!” “They’re lying!” “It’s a cover-up!” “There is corruption!”

The irony makes we wanna puke. Fools.

Another PERFECT opportunity for GOP Congress members, when interviewed, to say “Gee, I’m glad to see you’re suddenly interested in deaths, lies, cover-ups, and corruption, Media Fool, let’s talk about your boyfriend.”

Another PERFECT opportunity they’ll ignore.

Rational Thought on July 19, 2014 at 3:08 PM

I envision Obama sucking his thumb as he lays in the fetal position with his head on Mooch’s lap sobbing uncontrollably.

HiJack on July 19, 2014 at 3:06 PM

The thumb-sucking bear is loose.

faraway on July 19, 2014 at 4:21 PM

The tragedy is that I really think that Russia is more of friend to us than the radical Muslims (which Russia and us share as a common foe) or invading aliens that would take over this country from the inside out. The irony for us is that Russia seems to be more conservative than even we are. But if Russia is trying to reconstitute the Soviet empire, that’s not really acceptable. We’ve already made little squawk about them taking over the Crimea, and now Eastern Ukraine? Can we say “ok, but that’s all you can have.” Sounds like Chamberlain appeasing Hitler and saying ok you can have the Sudetenland or whatever, but that’s it. Shame. I sure wish we could work it out with the Russians and be friends.

anotherJoe on July 19, 2014 at 4:47 PM

I sure wish we could work it out with the Russians and be friends.

anotherJoe on July 19, 2014 at 4:47 PM

Me too. But right now the problem isn’t Russia. It’s us. We are untrustworthy, inconsistent, incoherent, ignorant and feckless. Russian policymakers from Putin on down have definitely concluded that we as a nation must be insane to allow such fools as Obama, Hillary et al. to guide the ship of state.

The Russians are pursuing longstanding strategic policies in a traditional manner, using force when they feel it is justified, while we play with hashtags and posturing. They are not trying to resurrect the Warsaw Pact. Ukraine is a vital issue for them. It is nothing to us. They could take over the entire country in a week if they wanted to just using airborne and special forces. They don’t want to. They demand security guarantees, however. The present government of Ukraine is bitterly hostile to Russia, which makes Putin apprehensive that it will join NATO, currently controlled by a pack of American leftist fools, and ignite a new Cold War. Or a hot one. Ukraine can’t fight Russia by itself. It has already lost a province, Crimea, and is now fighting for their honor as well as their national integrity. Positions are hardening and the situation is very dangerous.

It was this way exactly 100 years ago in Eastern Europe.

spiritof61 on July 19, 2014 at 5:23 PM

If I were Putin, what better time than the last 6 years to flex my muscles and start taking control of the countries I want. There’s been very little push back. And now? He’s facing a timid response after Russian missiles attacked a civilian airliner. That’s a shame and a travesty.

scalleywag on July 19, 2014 at 5:33 PM

Maybe we should call in the FBI KGB to find out what’s going on

rik on July 19, 2014 at 5:49 PM

No different than the Oministration’s tactics with the NSA, IRS, DOJ, Fast and Furious, et al.

He is nodding in approval as he snuggles in his superman underoos and eats cheeto’s being handed to him one by one by decorated Marines and Secret Service Agents.

I wish he would just … disappear -

Key West Reader on July 19, 2014 at 5:51 PM

That’s a shame and a travesty.

scalleywag on July 19, 2014 at 5:33 PM

So is Obama’s preznit-sy

Key West Reader on July 19, 2014 at 5:51 PM

This is exactly what the sum of Europe amounts to. A bunch of whining, useless pansies more concerned about taxing their neighbors to the brink in order to create a social net which won’t allow for prosperity and independence, and of course no money left for national defense. It will once again require America to step up to the plate and send in troops, air support, technical teams and logistics to seal off the crash site and treat the dead with respect and get them home and buried before they are decomposed. Without America once again being the lynchpin in Europe’s operations, the evidence will be destroyed and the dead people’s families will be mistreated and ignored while their bodies lay exposed to the ravages of nature.

Europe is a useless paper tiger with millions of utterly dependent Proles supporting a ruling class living a gloriously separate existence off the confiscated taxes.

KMC1 on July 19, 2014 at 2:29 PM

This.

KMC1 on July 19, 2014 at 6:02 PM

Europe is a useless paper tiger with millions of utterly dependent Proles supporting a ruling class living a gloriously separate existence off the confiscated taxes.

KMC1 on July 19, 2014 at 2:29 PM

This.

KMC1 on July 19, 2014 at 6:02 PM

Very well said.

Europe is also infested with Islamists and Leftists that have been sucking them dry for decades. Just like the USA. Unfortunately our “head” of state is likely an Islamist and definitely a proven Leftist.

We’re in a terrible position.

Key West Reader on July 19, 2014 at 6:08 PM

Me too. But right now the problem isn’t Russia. It’s us. We are untrustworthy, inconsistent, incoherent, ignorant and feckless. Russian policymakers from Putin on down have definitely concluded that we as a nation must be insane to allow such fools as Obama, Hillary et al. to guide the ship of state.

The Russians are pursuing longstanding strategic policies in a traditional manner, using force when they feel it is justified, while we play with hashtags and posturing. They are not trying to resurrect the Warsaw Pact. Ukraine is a vital issue for them. It is nothing to us. They could take over the entire country in a week if they wanted to just using airborne and special forces. They don’t want to. They demand security guarantees, however. The present government of Ukraine is bitterly hostile to Russia, which makes Putin apprehensive that it will join NATO, currently controlled by a pack of American leftist fools, and ignite a new Cold War. Or a hot one. Ukraine can’t fight Russia by itself. It has already lost a province, Crimea, and is now fighting for their honor as well as their national integrity. Positions are hardening and the situation is very dangerous.

It was this way exactly 100 years ago in Eastern Europe.

spiritof61 on July 19, 2014 at 5:23 PM

You make some very good points, so much so that I think it justifies repeating, and solemn consideration for a few moments.

I’m starting to form an opinion now, at the risk of going against the tide of shrill analysts like Hannity or militarists like Rubio, I’m thinking in this case we should try to error on the side of appeasement or dovishness, because I don’t think Russia (unlike the USSR) wants to take over the world, and what would we be fighting for? Sure, Russia needs to pay a price. And in no way am I reflecting a Rand Paulian view. It just doesn’t seem like this is worth throwing the two major powers of the world in to continued cold or even hot conflict. On the other hand, I do think we need to revive missile defense systems and support of Poland etc, just in case. And maybe if Russia itself would be a little more accommodating that could help also.

anotherJoe on July 19, 2014 at 6:16 PM

After my election I have more flexibility.

Twenty some Americans killed by Russians and barely a word from the president, “which may be a tragedy”. I was under the impression that when Americans are killed abroad the FBI is sent in to investigate. Are we going to at least get the bodies back?

tommer74 on July 19, 2014 at 6:22 PM

But this sort of humanitarian crisis – particularly the urgent need to recover the bodies of the victims and provide relief to their families – may bring enough pressure on Putin to force him into acting decently. At least we can hope so. Failing that, I’m not sure what other options are left.

Puh-leeze.

We spent fifty years engaging in proxy wars with the USSR. All the Ukrainians need is weaponry, special-forces advisers, and men and women from the CIA’s Special Activities Division.

Putin wants to go back to the good old days of the USSR. I say we make his wish come true. The current Army of the Russian Federation is GARBAGE. All you have to do is look at the video from the invasion of the Crimea. Their training is abysmal.

In the South Ossetia War, the Russians fought like Somali militiamen, closing their eyes and firing on full auto while holding their rifles over their heads.

The Georgians said the Russian troops stole all their toilets, because they couldn’t get any back home in the Motherland.

What the Russians need is a massive, international humiliation. We’ve tried for decades to make them our pals, and that’ll never happen. They’re too jealous, childish, and primitive.

Since we can’t be friends, we need to make them fear us.

A Chair of Some Kind on July 19, 2014 at 6:49 PM

Look the Russians have learned from the DOJ and the IRS, get rid of the evidence crash the hard drives then secretly get rid of them and make sure they are never found. That is what Obama wants anyway. If the truth comes out then Obama has to take responsibility for something and that is not what Obama is all about.

pwb on July 19, 2014 at 7:44 PM

After my election I have more flexibility.

Twenty some Americans killed by Russians and barely a word from the president, “which may be a tragedy”. I was under the impression that when Americans are killed abroad the FBI is sent in to investigate. Are we going to at least get the bodies back?

tommer74 on July 19, 2014 at 6:22 PM

What 20 some Americans killed? Where?

Walter L. Newton on July 19, 2014 at 8:22 PM

Puh-leeze.
A Chair of Some Kind on July 19, 2014 at 6:49 PM

Double Puh-leeze. Maybe Jazz wants to just hit the ‘reset’ button again. Or, we could have more media hand-wringing about the neocon Romney’s Cold War throwback warnings.

HellCat on July 19, 2014 at 8:52 PM

Fox investigates disappearance of chickens. Film at 11

jaywemm on July 19, 2014 at 9:09 PM

I can remember, growing up, that the Soviet press would be putting out stories that you just knew were false and thinking to myself what a great country we were because our government would never try anything like that because they couldn’t get away with it.

Now, I watch the Russians doing these things and start thinking about the border crisis, fast and furious, and the IRS going after political opponents and my feelings of being the superior country, of my youth, are disappearing.

bflat879 on July 19, 2014 at 10:14 PM

As soon as we determined that there were any Americans on board, we should’ve moved in and taken charge, Russia be damned.

Othniel on July 19, 2014 at 11:58 PM

As soon as we determined that there were any Americans on board, we should’ve moved in and taken charge, Russia be damned.

Othniel on July 19, 2014 at 11:58 PM

Instead we are seeing just exactly how “superior” the European Union is compared to the US – for decades they have been maligning our country, and essentially telling us we are backwards and ignorant. Even after twice saving their countries from Marxism in the 20th century alone.

Now, while their people are laying decomposing in the summer sun, they stand around making clucking sounds and wringing their hands. Putin knows and THEY know, Europe is a pathetic paper tiger with absolutely no military projection capability, and societies which are so fractious and despondent (due to the lack of any hope for ever achieving anything noteworthy in their lifetimes of servitude to The State) they would never be able to mount any kind of meaningful response.

Putin would easily crush any military action, making the Russian nationalist movement more powerful than ever in the last 40 years. Russia is itself devolving into it’s old ways because they cannot stop the inherent corruption in their society, and the Russian people were getting angry about it. Now, Putin has conveniently created an outside threat to keep the people focused on that, and on what a failure the Gorbachev reforms have been, and is using this to create the new, Old Russia.

Anyone who thinks Putin would not go to war over this, is a fool.

KMC1 on July 20, 2014 at 7:42 AM

Yet we seem to have more detailed news about this than we do about what’s going on on our own Southern border.

claudius on July 20, 2014 at 1:55 PM

Obama hums his favorite tune as he prepares for vacation.

Make the world go away.

profitsbeard on July 20, 2014 at 2:58 PM

… It just doesn’t seem like this is worth throwing the two major powers of the world into continued cold or even hot conflict. On the other hand, I do think we need to revive missile defense systems and support of Poland etc, just in case. And maybe if Russia itself would be a little more accommodating that could help also.

anotherJoe on July 19, 2014 at 6:16 PM

The Cold War II has already begun at least in the eyes of the Russians. They just began reopening an electronic communications intercept site in Cuba. Directed at the United States, just as it was during the first Cold War.

rlwo2008 on July 20, 2014 at 4:04 PM

Back in the cold way days, the Soviets used to have a saying for getting away with murder while the West made indignant, empty gestures:

“Coming out of the water dry.”

Putin is cut from the same Soviet cloth. And no doubt he’s saying the same thing to his cronies right now, while the “international community” makes indignant, empty gestures.

Spurius Ligustinus on July 20, 2014 at 6:39 PM

Destroying evidence? Has Obama’s IRS been their model?

Chessplayer on July 21, 2014 at 8:58 AM

The IRS can use a few good men experienced in cover up.

RdLake on July 21, 2014 at 9:30 AM

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