the Western propaganda machine has started a smear and deceitful campaign on
purpose to blame Russia for the unspeakable tragedy with Malaysian Airlines
plane over Ukraine’s territory we have to inform the public of another unbiased
point of view on the situation, presented recently by Robert Parry, an American
What Did US Spy Satellites See in Ukraine?
July 20, 2014
Exclusive: The U.S. media’s Ukraine
bias has been obvious, siding with the Kiev
regime and bashing ethnic Russian rebels and Russia’s President Putin. But now –
with the scramble to blame Putin for the Malaysia Airlines shoot-down –
the shoddy journalism has grown truly dangerous, says Robert Parry.
By Robert Parry
In the heat of the U.S.
media’s latest war hysteria – rushing to pin blame for the crash of a
Malaysia Airlines passenger jet on Russia’s
President Vladimir Putin – there is the same absence of professional skepticism
that has marked similar stampedes on Iraq,
and elsewhere – with key questions not being asked or answered.
The dog-not-barking question on the catastrophe over Ukraine is: what did the U.S.
surveillance satellite imagery show? It’s hard to believe that – with the
attention that U.S.
intelligence has concentrated on eastern Ukraine
for the past half year that the alleged trucking of several large Buk anti-aircraft missile systems from Russia to Ukraine
and then back to Russia
didn’t show up somewhere.
Yes, there are limitations to what U.S. spy satellites can see. But
the Buk missiles are about 16 feet long and they are
usually mounted on trucks or tanks. Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 also went down
during the afternoon, not at night, meaning the missile battery was not concealed
So why hasn’t this question of U.S.
spy-in-the-sky photos – and what they reveal – been pressed by the major U.S. news
media? How can the Washington Post run front-page stories, such as the one on
Sunday with the definitive title “U.S. official: Russia gave systems,”
without demanding from these U.S. officials details about what the U.S.
satellite images disclose?
Instead, the Post’s Michael Birnbaum and Karen De Young wrote from Kiev: “The United States
has confirmed that Russia
supplied sophisticated missile launchers to separatists in eastern Ukraine and that attempts were made to move them
back across the Russian border after the Thursday shoot-down of a Malaysian
jetliner, a U.S.
official said Saturday.
“‘We do believe they were trying to move back into Russia at least
three Buk [missile launch] systems,’ the official
said. U.S. intelligence was
‘starting to get indications … a little more than a week ago’ that the Russian
launchers had been moved into Ukraine,
said the official” whose identity was withheld by the Post so the official
would discuss intelligence matters.
But catch the curious vagueness of the official’s wording: “we do
believe”; “starting to get indications.” Are we supposed to believe – and
perhaps more relevant, do the Washington Post writers actually believe – that the
government with the world’s premier intelligence services can’t track three
lumbering trucks each carrying large mid-range missiles?
What I’ve been told by one source, who has
provided accurate information on similar matters in the past, is that U.S.
intelligence agencies do have detailed satellite images of the likely missile
battery that launched the fateful missile, but the battery appears to have
been under the control of Ukrainian government troops dressed in what look like
The source said CIA analysts were still not ruling out the
possibility that the troops were actually eastern Ukrainian rebels in similar
uniforms but the initial assessment was that the troops were Ukrainian
soldiers. There also was the suggestion that the soldiers involved were
undisciplined and possibly drunk, since the imagery showed what looked like
beer bottles scattered around the site, the source said.
Instead of pressing for these kinds of details, the U.S. mainstream
press has simply passed on the propaganda coming from the Ukrainian government
and the U.S. State Department, including hyping the fact that the Buk system is “Russian-made,” a rather meaningless fact
that gets endlessly repeated.
However, to use the “Russian-made” point to suggest that the Russians
must have been involved in the shoot-down is misleading at best and clearly
designed to influence ill-informed Americans. As the Post and other news
outlets surely know, the Ukrainian military also operates Russian-made military
systems, including Buk anti-aircraft batteries, so
the manufacturing origin has no probative value here.
Relying on the Ukraine
Much of the rest of the known case against Russia comes from claims made by
the Ukrainian regime, which emerged from the unconstitutional coup d’etat against elected President Viktor Yanukovych
on Feb. 22. His overthrow followed months of mass protests, but the actual coup
was spearheaded by neo-Nazi militias that overran government buildings and
forced Yanukovych’s officials to flee.
In recognition of the key role played by the neo-Nazis, who are
ideological descendants of Ukrainian militias that collaborated with the Nazi
SS in World War II, the new regime gave these far-right nationalists control of
several ministries, including the office of national security which is under
the command of longtime neo-Nazi activist Andriy Parubiy.
It was this same Parubiy whom the Post writers
turned to seeking more information condemning the eastern Ukrainian rebels and
the Russians regarding the Malaysia Airlines catastrophe. Parubiy
accused the rebels in the vicinity of the crash site of destroying evidence and
conducting a cover-up, another theme that resonated through the MSM.
Without bothering to inform readers of Parubiy’s
unsavory neo-Nazi background, the Post quoted him as a reliable witness
declaring: “It will be hard to conduct a full investigation with some of the
objects being taken away, but we will do our best.”
In contrast to Parubiy’s assurances, the Kiev regime actually has
a terrible record of telling the truth or pursuing serious investigations of
human rights crimes. Still left open are questions about the identity of
snipers who on Feb. 20 fired on both police and protesters at the Maidan, touching off the violent escalation that led to Yanukovych’s ouster. Also, the Kiev
regime has failed to ascertain the facts about the death-by-fire of scores of
ethnic Russians in the Trade Union Building in Odessa on May 2.
The Kiev regime also duped the New York
Times (and apparently the U.S. State Department) when it disseminated photos
that supposedly showed Russian military personnel inside Russia and then later inside Ukraine. After
the State Department endorsed the “evidence,” the Times led its newspaper with
this story on April 21, but it turned out that one of the key photos supposedly
shot in Russia was actually
taken in Ukraine,
destroying the premise of the story. But here we are yet again with the MSM
relying on unverified claims being made by the Kiev
regime about something as sensitive as whether Russia provided sophisticated
anti-aircraft missiles – capable of shooting down high-flying civilian aircraft
– to poorly trained eastern Ukrainian rebels.
This charge is so serious that it could propel the world into a second
Cold War and conceivably – if there are more such miscalculations – into a
nuclear confrontation. These moments call for the utmost in journalistic
professionalism, especially skepticism toward propaganda from biased parties.
Yet, what Americans have seen again is the major U.S. news outlets, led by the Washington Post
and the New York Times, publishing the most inflammatory of articles based
largely on unreliable Ukrainian officials and on the U.S. State Department
which was a principal instigator of the Ukraine crisis.
In the recent past, this sort of sloppy American journalism has led to
mass slaughters in Iraq –
and has contributed to near U.S.
wars on Syria and Iran – but now
the stakes are much higher. As much fun as it is to heap
contempt on a variety of “designated villains,” such as Saddam Hussein, Bashar
al-Assad, Ali Khamenei and now Vladimir Putin, this sort of recklessness is
careening the world toward a very dangerous moment, conceivably its