Almost immediately after the news began to spread that a Malaysian Airlines plane was apparently shot down over Ukraine, Western media and politicians blamed Russia for the event, claiming that Russian President Vladimir Putin should be directly responsible, despite complete lack of concrete evidence about who is to blame. This event is being used by the United States and its Western allies to further isolate Russia, after they failed to achieve this objective by provoking Russia in Ukraine.
Unjustified blame on Russia
While Putin took the right approach by stating that the plane crash in eastern Ukraine must be investigated thoroughly and objectively, Western politicians used the disaster for their own political agenda of isolating Russia. Former U.S. Secretary of State Hilary Clinton has stated that the crisis should “wake Europe up to the threat posed by Putin”. In fact, this event is very beneficial to the United States, who have been unsuccessfully trying to persuade its European allies to slap heavy sanctions on Russia. NATO and the US have been provoking Russia to intervene in Ukraine by allowing Western-backed Ukrainian President Poroshenko to kill ethnic Russian civilians in Ukraine and even shelling Russian territory, killing a Russian national. Putin rightly did not fall for these provocations. The United States, therefore, wasted no time in using this plane crash for their own political gains, pressuring Europe to escalate sanctions against Moscow. Clinton has already called for the EU to increase sanctions on Russia, while the Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott called on Russia to explain the disaster as it “now seems certain it’s been brought down by a Russian-supplied surface-to-air missile”, despite complete lack of strong evidence for such a claim.
Ukrainian military could be responsible for the crash
While western media and politicians have unilaterally blamed Russia for the disaster, they have failed to mention the other side of the story that suggests that the Ukrainian military may have been responsible.
The Russian Defense Ministry has said that when a Malaysian Airlines plane was apparently shot down over Ukraine, a Ukrainian Buk anti-aircraft missile battery was operational in the region. The ministry said that the battery was deployed at a site from which it could have fired a missile at the airliner. The Defense Ministry also added that the Ukrainian military has several batteries of Buk surface-to-air missile systems with at least 27 launchers, capable of bringing down high-flying jets, in the Donetsk region where the Malaysian passenger plane crashed. Furthermore, hours after the crash of the Boeing 777 was reported, Kiev published what it called intercepted communications between militia officers and their Russian handler to apparently discuss the take-down of a civilian aircraft by the militia. However, as was noted in this video, the alleged intercepted conversation was created before the plane crashed, suggesting that not only is the conversation fake, but whoever created it was aware about the impending disaster.
Ultimately, right now it is very difficult to confirm who was responsible for the crash, but it is imperative to know that there is some evidence that the Ukrainian military may have been involved, thus nullifying the unjustified claims that Russia is definitely to blame.
“Arming the rebels” hypocrisy
The United States and its Western allies have claimed that Russia should take the blame for the plane crash as it allegedly supplies heavy weaponry to the rebels in Ukraine. What has not been discussed in the mainstream media is the fact that the United States supplies Israel with weapons that are currently being used to slaughter civilians in Gaza. On the same day as the Malaysian plane crash, Israeli tanks, infantry and engineering units launched a broad assault on Gaza. Eleven Palestinians have been killed since the ground invasion, adding to at least 240 Palestinians that have already been killed in Israeli air strikes since 8 July, many of them children. This number is just a small proportion of the Palestinians that have been killed over the years by Israeli weapons supplied by the United States. Yet, America has not faced any repercussions for supplying deadly military equipment to a state that slaughters civilians and illegally occupies foreign land. It is completely hypocritical of the West to criticise Russia for allegedly supplying Ukrainian rebels (who are being aggressively shelled by the Ukrainian army) with weapons, while at the same time helping Israel to kill Palestinian civilians by supplying it with deadly military armaments.
One rule for the West, another rule for the rest
It is also worth remembering that on 3 July 1998, Iran Air Flight 655, a civilian passenger flight from Tehran to Dubai, was shot down by the United States Navy guided missile cruiser USS Vincennes. All 290 on board, including 66 children and 16 crew, died. Despite receiving ample criticism, the United States was allowed to get away with this crime, despite concrete evidence that it was responsible for the disaster. The United States agreed to pay US$61.8 million to Iran, but never apologised or admitted responsibility. Meanwhile, while there is no evidence whatsoever that Russia was responsible for the Malaysian plane crash is likely to face heave sanctions and isolation. This is just another example of the West ganging up on countries that refuse to follow Washington’s sinister agenda.
Alexander Clackson is the founder of Global Political Insight, a political media and research organisation. He has a Master’s degree in International Relations. Alexander works as a political consultant and frequently contributes to think-tank and media outlets.