MH17 – Downed by Elite Collusion 322

The immediate cause of the MH17 disaster was a missile shot by pro-Russian forces who mistook it for one of the military aircraft they had been regularly shooting down. It is a terrible tragedy – and tragically not unique. There have been several such events in my lifetime, including the USS Vincennes incident and the Soviet downing of a Korean airliner.

The problem is that Vladimir Putin has revived the Soviet cult of perfectionism – the idea that the state simply cannot make a mistake. That Putin-backed forces could commit an error is therefore unthinkable, as that would imply that Putin made an error in backing and supplying them. Putin cannot make errors. We have therefore seen a stream of desperate propaganda stories emanating from the Russian media, such as the allegation that it was the government in Kiev attempting to shoot down Putin himself. These narratives are aimed at the domestic Russian nationalist audience, but are accepted by the small band of ardent Putin supporters in the West.

Many people in the West, myself included, have been shocked and alienated by the rampant and vicious immorality of Western foreign policy in what I might call the neo-con era, with the ascendancy of Bush and Blair marking a step change in the open use of military force to grab natural resources – a return to the Imperial heyday. The veneer of concern for democracy and human rights layered over Guantanamo, extraordinary rendition, the curtailment of long-cherished civil rights at home and the mass compound crimes of Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya, led to a visceral revulsion.

Putin’s successful opposition to western designs on Syria and Iran gave the impression, quite probably correctly, that a revived Russia was the only effective obstacle to western hegemony, China being passive. But unfortunately this led some who opposed Western neo-imperialism to join in the hero worship of Putin.

The mechanisms of this vary. In my view, the largest number are people who are not psychologically equipped to fight over-mighty power everywhere, which is a lonely path, and prefer the much easier option of joining the entourage of a big power, and convincing themselves that power is good. It is comforting to feel part of a powerful team. Some of course are paid by the Russians, and you see them turning up on Russia Today both as presenters and interviewees, but these are a small section. Some were supporters of the Soviet Union.

What is perhaps most extraordinary is that, the very things which these people criticise most about Western society, Russia and Putin do much worse. At the most fundamental level, the disparity of wealth between rich and poor in Russia is far, far worse than the still appalling level it has reached in the West.

The total Russian economy is 20% smaller than the total British economy. Yet Russia has almost three times as many billionaires as the UK, and the Russian billionaires’ combined wealth is over six times the combined wealth of British billionaires.

Go figure. Yet the delusional continue to contrive to believe that Russia is an alternative to global capitalism.

Russia is not only a much more unequal society than the West. It also much worse in the field of civil liberties and media freedom. Scores of real journalists have been killed, mostly unheard of internationally. The free media has vanished. In the West, the field of opinion reflected in the mainstream media has narrowed right down. In the UK, Andrew Gilligan was sacked for telling the truth about Iraqi WMD, while his source was murdered. But the West is moving in the direction of autocracy; Russia is already there. It in no sense represents an alternative, freer society than the West.

Nor is Russia any less imperialist. Putin is in fact an extremely aggressive nationalist imperialist, as his annexations of Abkhazia and Crimea have shown. Highly significant is the legislation just passed to award Russian nationality to ethnic Russians in former Soviet states. That is racially based legislation. It means for example that 40% of the population of Kazakhstan potentially become Russian citizens, with similar figures in the Baltic states. It is highly aggressive and designed to have destabilising potential.

One fact which has become undeniably clear in the Ukraine is that the pro-Russian insurgency in the East is commanded by members of the Russian military and security forces like Strelkov who are Russian, not Ukrainian citizens, and they are under tactical and strategic supervision from Russia. Again, the self-hating fantasist tendency in the West manage to convince themselves that what is happening in East Ukraine is massive destruction of civilian populations by NATO forces.

People who are that removed from reality cannot be helped.

Much more dangerous are those who do have a grip on reality, who understand exactly what is really happening, and who don’t care. That sums up the position of almost all western governments. The truth is that the financial interests of all those Russian billionaires are completely linked in with those of the super-rich of the West. To take only the UK as an example, these are the people Tony Blair, Peter Mandelson and Boris Johnson lunch and have holidays with. These are the people who employ Gerhard Schroeder and David Owen as lapdogs.

Nobody is more annoyed than Angela Merkel at the downing of MH17, not because she cares about those dead people, but because of the massive effort she has put into ensuring that, whatever Russia does in Ukraine, German economic interests will not be affected. Germany gets most of its electricity from Russian gas, and both Siemens and Mercedes, on a daily basis, have been lobbying Merkel to make sure that nothing is done that hurts German economic interests. Cameron has been receiving the same lobbying from his banker mates. In both these cases, the politicians are being talked to by the people who finance them.

The result is that there has been a strong diplomatic push, particularly by Germany, to divert the question of sanctions on to matters of process. The problem is not Russia trying to annex bits of Ukraine and funding, arming and staffing the destabilisation of a European state. The Germans are seeking to define the problem down to whether or not Russia cooperates in various stages of the air crash investigation.

Putin will continue his dangerous expansionist nationalism because it is a self-trapping path for a politician to take; but also he is encouraged that whatever he does, nobody makes any serious moves to stop him. The people on MH17 were killed because of the pusillanimity of Western politicians, financed and guided by the financial elite.

The pathetic “sanctions” adopted by the US and EU so far have been specifically designed to be completely toothless. They target middle and lower ranking individuals without major western links anyway. None of the top ten largest Russian billionaires has been touched.

Russia’s richest man – Alisher Usmanov – is extremely close to Putin and as chairman of Gazprominvestholdings has been directly involved for a decade in pressurising Ukraine, and was also Putin’s chosen instrument for closing down the free media. But you won’t see Usmanov on any sanctions list – he has 10% of Facebook, 29% of Arsenal FC, the most expensive mansion in Surrey and numerous other western connections, not to mention he is Gerhard Schroeder and David Owen’s direct boss.

Much has been said of the 1.2 billion dollars contract for two amphibious assault vessels Russia has ordered from France. Amphibious assault! Where?

But, actually much more interesting, 1.2 billion dollars incredibly happens to be the combined value of four of the World’s largest luxury yachts, which met together off Cap Ferrat and Antibes from 10 to 16 June this year. They are Dilbar, Madame Gu, Grand Bleu and Hermitage.

In Putin’s Russia, government, organised crime and secret services are absolutely integrated. All were well represented at the series of meetings that took place on those yachts, where deals were done on everything from metal prices to heroin – and Ukraine. If US drones had wanted to do some good in the world, there was their target, but they were too busy killing some 16 year old kid, and numerous bystanders, in Waziristan or Yemen for a dangerous interpretation of the Koran. None of the people at those meetings will appear on any sanctions list, though they are the men who rule Russia with Putin. They will all still be very welcome in boardrooms in London, Berlin and New York.

If Europe had followed from the start the excellent leadership offered by Radek Sikorski, the passengers on MH17 would not have died. I should like to think that the European Council will start to listen to Sikorski now. But I doubt it.

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322 thoughts on “MH17 – Downed by Elite Collusion

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  • Mary

    Makes you feel poor.

    I will give the link to a friend who told me that ‘there’s no money’ even for our beloved NHS. I reminded her of HS2 £50bn upwards and HMS Queen Elizabeth and HMS Prince Charles £bn think of a number.

    I’m off for a while for my op but will await the AIIB report with interest. Cameron has agreed with the Dutch that Farnborough will conduct the investigation on the black boxes.

    BREAKING NEWS:British air accident investigators based at Farnborough will retrieve data from black boxes of flight MH17, PM says

  • Phil

    “Let’s hope they all do a Murdoch.”

    You probably mean a Maxwell. Unless you wish them all a growing fortune and influence.

  • DomesticExtremist

    Hmm, you do seem to have a bit of a downer on old Vlad. I will reiterate that I carry no torch for him, but the mem that he is an expansionary imperialist simply does not stack up.

    One simply needs to look at a map to observe who the imperialists are and it is the neo-con West, either through NATO marching ever eastwards right up to the Russian Federation borders or via R2P and neo-con ‘coalitions of the willing’ in the Middle East, where once they are done they foment sectarian difference and leave behind hopelessly weak pseudo-democracies guaranteed to fail at some point (libya, Iraq).

    I’m sure the West would much prefer to have a drunken buffoon like Yelstin running Russia whose slavish adherence to the neo-liberal method was the primary factor in both creating Russian poverty and then building up the obscene wealth gap that pertains today. The West is certainly not shy of taking the ill-gotten gains of both Russian and Ukrainian oligarchs into their banking systems, no questions are ever asked about how the money was obtained.
    Whatever you think of Putin, the idea that he is building an empire is risible. So far he has added Crimea to the RF, a desire that Crimeans have held since 1991. South Ossetia and Abkhazia were likewise never happy within Georgia and fought the regime for a long time before 2008. All in all it’s a pretty pathetic empire.
    Those former Soviet republics currently affecting fear of Putin and that wish to avoid secessionist movements need simply avoid persecuting their Russian minorities (e.g. the Baltic states) rather than running overt or covert policies of apartheid as they currently do.

  • Phil

    “At least Putin doesn’t have a Tuesday list of victims waiting to be assassinated by drones. Some of us don’t subscribe to a manichean view of the world,”

    I guess you have no inkling that you exactly do what you incorrectly attribute to Craig. Very funny indeed.

  • conjunction

    Thanks very much Craig.

    Only trouble with your piece is that its about the most depressing 1000 words I’ve read for a long time.

    But thanks anyway

  • kurtan

    Outflanking West in Syria
    The oil deal with China
    Pipeline deal with Austria and Hungary
    BRICS setup rival to IMF
    Putin rips Cuba’s debt up.

    Let’s face it Craig.Putin is on a roll.
    MH17 whether it was designed for purpose or not is being used to make Putin look guilty.

  • Briar

    Never mind about evidence and judicial process. If you hate a guy’s guts, of course he did it. Plain as the nose on your face. Depressing to see the lynch-mob-mind operating here, however much it wraps itself up in anti imperialist rhetoric.

  • Gordon

    From Craig: ” If Europe had followed from the start the excellent leadership offered by Radek Sikorski, the passengers on MH17 would not have died. I should like to think that the European Council will start to listen to Sikorski now. But I doubt it.”

    Notes on this “distinguished”, redoubtable person, from (sorry) Wikipedia:

    “From 2002 to 2005 he was a resident fellow of the American Enterprise Institute in Washington, D.C., and executive director of the New Atlantic Initiative.[11] He was editor of the analytical publication European Outlook, and organised international conferences. He is a member of the Board of Advisors of the American Committees on Foreign Relations.[12]

    From 1988 to 1992 he advised Rupert Murdoch on investing in Poland.

    Sikorski is married to the American journalist and historian Anne Applebaum.”

    A more right-wing Zionist prick you cannot imagine. Why is Craig Murray lionising this person? Very worrying.

  • Ben-American Fascist Flechette

    Oh and please excuse the source on the previous post. I’ll try to stick with RT or ITASS.

  • Roderick Russell

    Maybe we should dissassociate the current canpaign of critisism of Russia from the horror of this shocking missile attack on a commercial jet. The downing of this jet is truly a horrible issue, but the Neocons seem to be using it as another plank in their attack on Putin and Russia that was already underway.

    I am not under any illusions about Russia. But to my mind, Putin’s Russia was about the most benign Russian society that the West has had to face in centuries. Indeed Russia’s sphere of influence / borders are the furthest east they have been. We should be thankful for small mercies; so why have we been picking at Russia for months (long before this shooting down of a jet) in what can only be a neocon effort to recreate the cold war.

    Why do the Neocons want another cold war? Are their economic concerns at home that the public is unaware of? Or are the Neocons concerned that the excesses of their out-of-control security/intelligence apparatus, and the negative effect that this has had on our civil liberties and freedom, are now coming to public attentiion and do they need a distraction?

    Whatever it is, we would be closer to resolving this horrible airliner shooting down if we had not spent the last year sticking pins into Mr. Putin. Putin’s Russia is far more benign than it’s predesessor States – USSR and Tsarist Russia – and in this run up to the centenary of WW1 we should not forget that.

  • anon

    Craig is incredibly blinkered when it comes to the Ukraine. He might like to present evidence before making sweeping statements, however plausible ( let’s forget for now that the whole debate is misframed – what actually matters is not WHO but WHY).

  • Ben-American Fascist Flechette

    Ukraine will have to answer a lot of questions during the international investigation, Churkin said during his speech at the UN Security Council, adding that Kiev spread fake information allegedly connecting the self-defense forces to the downing of the plane.

    “Throughout the investigation Ukraine would have to answer many questions: about the actions of its air traffic controllers, the reasons for the movement of one of the Ukrainian Buk missile systems on July 17 right next to the area controlled by the militias. Why this missile defense system was moved immediately after the airplane crash? Why on July 17 Ukrainian air defense radar worked at the maximum intensity?” Churkin said.”

    Russia trusts ICAO to conduct the investigation; Kiev not so much.

    Damn that Vlad !

  • MJ

    “this shocking missile attack on a commercial jet”

    Truth is we don’t know if it was a missile attack. It might have been a bomb. Or something else. Only a forensic examination of the wreckage will determine what happened. It will also confirm the identity of the plane.

  • passerby

    Come on Craig, if Charlie Crawford is harrumphing there must be a rat away!

    Fact that even poxy local politicos’ bagmen chosen from among the trusted underworld fraternity are engaged to pick up and drop the orders/-ribes, perhaps has been escaping your attention?

    Time and again we have arrived at this juncture, and the epiphany that; the criminal underworld, the elite (at the behest their masters the money makers/lenders), through their intermediaries the SIS, rule the roost; Laws are for the nobodies, and the great unwashed.

    To find machinations of commodity price fixing and realignment of interests taking place aboard the luxury yachts and out of the way of the prying eyes of the unwashed, is nothing extraordinary. At leas they don’t meet every morning somewhere nearby and set up the next target to be achieved as most of our lot do!

    However, what has this to do with the Malaysian jet? Although as an aside, best keep an eye on who is getting ready to buy that airline, and at what price?

    I know you are not a fan of Putin, but are you in favour of the empire of chaos setting its ducks in row in the way of attacking and democratising Russia too?

  • Pinky

    What’s on this fantasist’s self-hating mind just now is not Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya, but North Korea. (Ch. 5)

    Steady escalation of violence on the border of a designated US enemy? Check.
    Repressive criminal oligarchy in the destabilized state? Check.
    Blurring the line between civil insurrection and aggression? Check.

    Difference is, now the UN’s no longer such a well-oiled US machine – the Russians aren’t boycotting it. Now the OSCE is here too. And this time, thank goodness, no parties are commies: as Craig reminds us, now they’re kleptocrats like us. Blum calls communism the single factor that made the difference between mediation in Palestine and Kashmir and war in Korea. So be glad that all our scumbag oligarchs are doves – if the Russian regime was incorruptible, the mushroom clouds would already be blooming.

  • OldMark

    ‘Highly significant is the legislation just passed to award Russian nationality to ethnic Russians in former Soviet states. That is racially based legislation. It means for example that 40% of the population of Kazakhstan potentially become Russian citizens, with similar figures in the Baltic states. It is highly aggressive and designed to have destabilising potential.’

    You are way off beam here Craig.Firstly, the legislation was enacted 3 months ago.

    Secondly, Russian speakers from the former soviet space but born or resident outside the Russian Federation have always been able to acquire Russian citizenship; this nice guy for instance (Ukrainian born)has a choice of 4 passports-

    The new law however makes the process simpler, and should reduce the waiting time for a passport down to three months.

    Thirdly, nearly all European countries offer fast track citizenship to non residents who have ancestral links to the country but who don’t presently live there, or were born abroad. Germany has granted citizenship to tens of thousands of Volga Germans and Saxon Transylvanians in the last two decades. Romania offers citizenship to Romanian speakers in Moldova. There are hundreds of thousands of Irish passports held by Irish citizens born or living in the UK (and not just in NI). And of course you, should the ‘Yes’ campaign win in September, will doubtless expect Edinburgh promptly to grant you a Scottish passport, despite the fact you are Norfolk born, and were only permanently resident in Scotland over 30 years ago in your student days.

  • Habbabkuk (La vita è bella) !

    I shall read the comments more thoroughly later this evening, but a cursory look at the first few already tells me that Craig has upset the usual West-hating (and therefore Putin-loving) crowd.

    I’m always pleased when Craig tells it like it is and rubs their noses in unpleasant truth. It must be very destabilising for the Eminences and Useful Idiots on here, who are unable to dismiss him with the usual knee-jerk cry of “troll!”.


  • Uzbek in the UK

    Very well written Mr Murray. I agree with everything you said.

    Unfortunately some (mad western lefties) on this blog are blinded by Russian propaganda. What makes them look even more ridiculous is that this same people claim their distrust in western propaganda and present us with so called discoveries of western made conspiracies. And all at the same time swallowing Russian propaganda with very wide open mouth.

    None of these people I bid have been to Russia recently. None of them seen disparities which you mentioned. None of them came across someone they knew being murdered for various reasons ranging from speaking about social, economic or political problems to just having different Non-Slavic look. For these (mad western lefties) putin’s Russia is good just because it is anti-American/anti-Western. And yet everyone of these (mad western lefties) will not want (for the all money in the world) to live in Russia bearing Russian citizenship. These people (mad western lefties) using putin’s very own lingua are “fifth column” which represent danger and MUST be (according to putin’s address to the Duma) neutralised (exterminated in some cases) and shamed (publicly humiliated). Would they (mad western lefties) want this to be done to them? Why not? This is after all what their favourite world leader (putin) is calling his henchman to do with Russian “fifth-column”. No, wait. We live in different society. We do not do this here (not yet at least). And yet our society is bad and putin’s society is good.

    What s stupidity.

    Come on mad people. Get real.

  • Tony M

    The East Ukranians might have one seized, smashed and disabled BUK AA launcher, incomplete, old, cannot track or reach the height the Malaysian Jet would normally have flown at, requires crew of highly trained technicians. The Ukranians are thought to have operational in or near the region some twenty-seven BUKs, against what exactly it is intended to defend is quite mysterious, the rebellious east have no planes except maybe something found in a barn or museum. The Ukranian ATC not only altered the planes course to take it through the conflict area, they also requested the plane fly lower to accomodate the BUK altitude range and the height ceiling of Ukraine’s ubiquitous fighter jets and their air-to-air weaponry.

    Balance of probabilities: Ukraine/NATO/US/UK set the plane up as a sitting or dead duck and took several shots, triangulation of crossfire and all that, it’s a goner. Subsequently Ukraine has seized civil ATC records, hampering all inquiry and faked audio recordings and probably other ‘evidence’ to blame anyone but themselves.

    A predictable course of events, we knew the NATO axis lost and would try something desperate and despicable, reverting to type with a frat-boy destructive tantrum. It changes nothing Ukraine will be sliced and diced from both east and west, whilst the population wither away, a demographic collapse, assisted by cumulative ingestion of food grown on Chernobyl station radioactively contaminated soil, that glorious ‘black’ soil discussed at length here recently, of the south east the recipient of fallout of everything up to and including Plutonium with a half-life of 28,000 years, infinity in the life of man, particularly heavily in May 1986.

    This Hammond looks shiftier than Hague ever did and that is saying something. Cameron as always looks radiant with machiavellian ecstasy and heading for a fall.

  • OldMark

    ‘1.2 billion dollars incredibly happens to be the combined value of four of the World’s largest luxury yachts, which met together off Cap Ferrat and Antibes from 10 to 16 June this year. They are Dilbar, Madame Gu, Grand Bleu and Hermitage.’

    More on Shvidler here (owner of Grand Bleu)-

    He is a UK resident and a US citizen.

    Is he subject to sanctions or asset freezes ? I think we should be told.

  • Peacewisher

    @Uzbek: This was supposed to be about MH17, and it was the Western mainstream media that made it about Putin. I’m surprised that Craig has jumped on the bandwagon, and that people like yourself are relating this to Russian society. All societies have their advantages and disadvantages, and most governments, including the UK, it would appear, have ways of dealing with those who they perceive as threatening their control. Putin may be more authoritarian in his approach (hardly left wing!) but that is certainly no reason for blaming him for an event on another country’s soil before any evidence is available.

    Wasn’t Putin right about WMD in Iraq?

    And what is mad, western or loony about seeking the truth?

  • Uzbek in the UK


    How is what you have described not “racially based legislation”? Just because one have Slavic look one can acquire Russian citizenship? Should not migration programmes be open for everyone (no matter colour of their skin) providing they have some set of skills that are needed for development just like in US, Canada, Australia?

    But no. Russian law decided to pre-select people of Slavic origin and cover only these people by their migration programme.

    But even this racially based legislation does only work at putin’s benefit. I have mentioned this earlier and mentioning this again. But actually for Slavs from Central Asia it takes much longer to get paperwork sorted than it took for Abkhazians and South Osetians to acquire Russian nationality (virtually over few weeks). Now one would argue that Russian legislation cover only Slavs (which it does in Central Asia) but people of non-Slavic origin (Abkhazians and South Osetians) were prioritised in this one singled out case. Why not then cover all other non-Slavs (Uzbeks, Tadjiks, Kyrgyzs).

    To add to this. I have received information from some credible sources confirming that applications from Crimean Tatars in Uzbekistan were not being accepted by (now) Russian Consulate. Of course all you aware what happened to Crimea recently. Crimean Tatars (who are still represented by many thousands in Central Asia) have in the past applied to immigrate to Crimea via Ukrainian Consulate. But since recent event in Crimea and Russian annexation of the peninsula Crimea Tatars turned to Russian Consulate which does not accept their applications. The question is WHY? It seems odd since Russia has announced to the world that Crimea was back to its mother (Russia) and since Russian Duma and putin himself sorted out all the relevant paperwork for Crime to become part of Russia. Interesting developments. Do not you think?

  • Phil

    “That is why I like Putin, Craig… he stands up to the neocons.”

    No matter that he is a mass murderer then. You “like” him. Whatever the fuck that means. Like you like tomatoes? Or Levi jeans perhaps?

    It seems you are so desperate to be saved you embrace any old mass-murdering black-shirted pig dog* because his PR says he is the enemy of your own hated masters.

    The truth is the Russian elites, the Western elites and all other elites, all shop together, all bank together, all holiday in the same luxury. They may squabble over spoils but their primary concern is self preservation. They may or may not hate each other but you can be 100% sure they hate you and me.

    Don’t be a mug. Putin is one of them. Russia is just another mafia state. There is no white knight coming to save you. Everything is PR.

    [*Apologies to pigs and dogs]

  • Salford Lad

    The speed at which the Western media and presstitutes jumped to condemn Russia and demonise Putin, because of the MH17 incident is indeed worthy of Edward Louis Bernays, the relative of Sigmund Freud and author of the seminal book ‘Propaganda’. A favourite in Goebbels library.
    We have a tale here of demonization, deceit, distraction. These are all the precursors used against Saddam in Iraq, Assad in Syria, Qaddafi in Libya and against Iran.
    It must be obvious to even the dogs in the street that there is an agenda in place here. It does not take a genius to trace the originators of these dirty trick plays, it has become rather boring to see the sheeple fall in line each time with the ‘.message’. as espoused by the puppetmasters
    If it were a court of Law the lawyers would be disbarred and the judge would have declared a mistrial.
    The proof exists as to the culprits in this sad episode, It can be found in the voice recordings from the air traffic controllers at Kiev, in the Kiev radar tracking records, in the Russian civil and military radar tracking and in Satellite images from an American satellite which was immediately overhead at the time. Including the recordings from the aircrafts black box.
    There has been so much anti-Russian hysteria whipped up by the MSM it is dumbfounding.
    Intelligent people no longer succumb to the politically correct message as issued by the compromised Western media. The BBC obviously stays on message as promulgated from Washington as does their poodle Cameron.
    For a more balanced assessment of what is going on in Ukraine and the MH17 disaster check the attached;

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