Is US President Obama wrong on Malaysian Air MH17 being shot down?
Who shot down the Malaysia Airlines plane over the East Ukraine? Who was behind this?
Who shot down the Malaysia Airlines plane over the East Ukraine? Who was behind this? Russian media now reports that unnamed US officials are telling the Associated Press that their intelligence suggests the Malaysia Airlines plane was shot down by anti-Kiev militia. They are also reporting and are referring to the US news agency AP that no link to Russia has been found.
US officials believe that the passenger aircraft was intercepted by an SA-11 surface-to-air missile, which was fired by Ukrainian militia members. One official said the likeliest explanation was the aircraft was shot down in error, an assertion that seems to be bolstered by the previous downing of 12 Ukrainian military aircraft by militants in the region.
Intelligence suggests that, although the US maintains that Russia “created the conditions” that led to the incident, officials were not aware of the presence of any Russians during the missile launch, and would not confirm that the missile crew was trained in Russia.
The crash of the airliner last week with 298 passengers aboard has only exacerbated the row between the US, European powers and Russia over the developing situation in eastern Ukraine.
The aircraft’s black boxes were turned over to Malaysian authorities late Monday night by Ukrainian militia. Access to the debris field, which is located within the restive Donetsk People’s Republic, has been limited and rumors have run rampant regarding the conduct of militia in the area.
One official said that, regarding as to who precisely fired the missile, “we don’t know a name, we don’t know a rank and we’re not even 100 percent sure of a nationality.” The official added that “there is not going to be a Perry Mason moment here,” referring to any likely absence of definitive conclusions.
Officials noted that their inquiry relied partly on social media postings, citing specifically video of a missile launcher purported to be a Buk system battery crossing into Russian territory, and appearing to be missing a missile. Following questions, intel officials admitted they had not verified the video’s origin or content.
CIA information received today is a sharp departure from comments made by US President Barack Obama a day prior, who stated that the Malaysia Airlines aircraft had been “shot down over territory controlled by Russian-backed separatists” that had been both armed with anti-aircraft weapons and trained by Russia.