Video shows the moment a missile hit the Ukrainian jet

Video that appears to show the moment a missile struck the Ukrainian airliner over Iran has been circulating online for several hours. Here it is:

Now the NY Times has confirmed the position near the path of the jet where the clip was shot using clues from the clip itself combined with satellite images of the area. Kudos to the Times for some pretty clever work here:

In the video, approximately 10 seconds elapse between the flash of impact with the plane and the sound of the explosion reaching the camera. The sound delay indicates the plane was a little over two miles from the camera at the time of impact. This comports with the path of the flight, as recorded by the flight tracking company FlightRadar24.

Buildings seen in the background of the video are at least five stories high and have a distinctive design. Several rows of evenly spaced buildings are visible, consistent with the aerial view of the building compound in satellite imagery.

You can click over to see the visual comparisons which are very convincing. The Times has located the place where the person filming this was standing within a few meters. In this map you can see the location of the crash relative to the airport and a nearby military base:

In addition to the clip above, there is another CCTV clip which shows the impact of the plane:

This really is a tragedy but as both Allahpundit and I have already argued it’s not the fault of the United States. Over at the Atlantic, Brookings Institution Fellow Shadi Hamid argues that the American press is getting carried away with it’s desire to blame Trump for everything:

In the aftermath of the strike, critics of the Trump administration’s foreign policy, particularly on the left, have described the move as one more rash American intervention that’s sure to further destabilize the region. Yet this formulation gives U.S. policy, for all its flaws, too much credit. Not everything is America’s fault; others are sometimes to blame; and no one, not even the weaker parties, are devoid of agency or freed of responsibility. The burden of de-escalation does not fall entirely on the United States; Iran, too, can choose to de-escalate…

Middle East experts, and particularly those from the region, have tended to be less alarmist than most other commentators. These experts are likely to be less fixated on Trump himself and less likely to put the United States at the center of their analysis. And they are more likely to be aware of the sheer scale of brutality, mass murder, and sectarian cleansing that Soleimani helped orchestrate. Soleimani wasn’t just another bad guy. He was one of the region’s worst. (Yet another humanitarian catastrophe has been unfolding in Syria, but it has garnered little attention. The Assad regime, with crucial military support from Iran and Russia, has been bombing Idlib province. More than 200,000 Syrians have already fled, and hundreds of thousands more could be forced from their homes.)…

The United States has done terrible things in the Middle East. To even casual observers of the region, this should be clear enough. That, however, doesn’t mean there is a moral equivalence between Iran and the United States. Elevating America as a somehow unique source of evil takes necessary self-criticism and turns it into narcissism. It insists on making us the exceptional ones, glorifying ourselves by glorifying our sins. To suggest that American officials are at the rarefied level of the deliberate, systematic mass murder and sectarian cleansing that Soleimani helped orchestrate isn’t just wrong; it’s silly.

This was published before the left began blaming Trump for complicity in downing the Ukranian airliner. Clearly, he was on to something.

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