‘Flight MH17 disaster should bring peace, not war’


This video from the Netherlands is called Netherlands: MH17 bodies arrive in Hilversum for identification process.

Translated from NOS TV in the Netherlands today, about people mourning the flight MH17 disaster in Suriname:

“This kind of event is sky-high above political differences,” says Winston Wirht. He is one of the advisors of the Surinamese president and has just written in the condolence register about his desire that this disaster should bring the world a step closer to peace. “Only then the innocent passengers will not have given their lives for nothing. World peace, it would be so fine. Indeed, we all breathe the same air.”

Unfortunately, not all politicians agree with Mr Wirth. Some are beating the war drums. Dutch ex-NATO Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer abuses the grief about the horrible death of the aircraft passengers, calling for spending more taxpayers’ money on ‘defence’.

The MH17 tragedy shows need for peace, not war mongering: here.

While en route from Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso to Algiers, Algeria a twin-engine passenger plane operated by Air Algérie crashed in northern Mali early Thursday morning with 116 people onboard. It is still unclear, at the time of this writing, what caused the Boeing MD-83 to fall from the sky: here.

“French President François Hollande said there were no survivors found at the site of the Air Algérie crash in Northern Mali, adding that French troops dispatched to the scene had recovered one of the jetliner’s black boxes.” French officials believe weather may be behind the crash that killed 116 people. Weather is also thought to be to blame for the Taiwanese plane crash that killed 48 on Wednesday.

Rupert Murdoch media rummage through personal belongings of flight MH17 victim


This video from eastern Ukraine is called At Sky News, reporter Colin Brazier going through MH17 victims’ belongings.

From AFP news agency:

Sky News apologizes after reporter rummages through luggage of flight MH17 victim on air

Sunday, July 20, 2014 20:20 EDT

British broadcaster Sky News apologised after one of its presenters searched through luggage at the crash site of downed flight MH17 live on air on Sunday.

Sky News is part of the Rupert Murdoch empire, with a very long list of privacy violations: from a murdered schoolgirl to actors to bereaved military families to the British royal family; etc. etc.

In a news broadcast, presenter Colin Brazier was shown rooting through personal belongings in an opened suitcase at the site, picking up a set of keys before saying: “We shouldn’t really be doing this.”

The footage was greeted with anger on social media, including calls for Brazier to be sacked.

BBC presenter Jacqui Oatley tweeted that she was “astonished” while Joe Watson, a professor of Mass Media at Baker University described it as a “horrible moment for journalism”. …

The incident came as Australia called for respect for the bodies of the 298 who perished in the disaster, amid reports the crash site was being trampled and interfered with as investigators struggled to reach the site due to conflict.

See also here. And here. And here.

From Salon.com in the USA:

Brazier’s eagerness to jump into the personal effects of a victim recalls the worst of tabloid behavior – and for many in the UK, it no doubt calls to mind the ethical failures of the Murdoch empire, including hacking into the voicemails of a murder victim.

CNN somehow outdoes Colin Brazier in its MH17 coverage: here.

A Dutch TV journalist rummaged as well at MH17 disaster site: here.

Britain: A desire not to embarrass the Royal Family has emerged as a key reason why the Metropolitan Police failed thoroughly to investigate phone hacking at the News of the World in 2006: here.

The way the crash of flight MH17 in Ukraine is being politically exploited parallels the way the 9/11 terrorist attack in the US was utilized to pursue reactionary aims: here.

Football: Oligarch and Shakhtar Donetsk owner Rinat Akhmetov has threatened to fine a host of players who have failed to return to Ukraine amid fear for their safety due to the ongoing conflict in the capital: here.

Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 crash in Ukraine, tragedy and war


Wreckage of flight MH17 in Ukraine

By Alex Lantier:

The crash of Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 in Ukraine

19 July 2014

The remarks Friday by President Barack Obama on the tragic crash of Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 in eastern Ukraine raised far more questions than they answered.

Obama continued the mind-numbing propaganda barrage from US officials and media, denouncing Russia and pro-Russian separatist forces in eastern Ukraine for shooting down the plane and demanding the surrender of the separatists to the Western-backed regime in Kiev. However, his remarks themselves underscored that this propaganda campaign has no factual basis whatsoever and is leading Washington into an explosive confrontation with Russia.

Obama said: “Here is what we know so far. Evidence indicates that the plane was shot down by a surface-to-air missile that was launched from an area that is controlled by Russian-backed separatists inside of Ukraine. We also know that this is not the first time a plane has been shot down in eastern Ukraine. Over the last several weeks, Russian-backed separatists have shot down a Ukrainian transport plane and a Ukrainian helicopter, and they claimed responsibility for shooting down a Ukrainian fighter jet. Moreover, we know that these separatists have received a steady flow of support from Russia.”

Reread Obama’s comments carefully. You will see that nothing he said proves that pro-Russian forces fired a missile at MH17. Separatist rebels have shot down low-flying Ukrainian military aircraft with portable anti-aircraft missiles, but this does not mean they had either the intent or the capability to destroy a jumbo jet flying at 33,000 feet—an act they knew would hand Washington a massive propaganda weapon.

As for Obama’s claim that the separatists control the area from which the missile was fired, for which he presented no evidence, this means nothing given the chaotic conditions in eastern Ukraine. In the city of Donetsk, the stronghold of the anti-Kiev separatists, forces loyal to Kiev control the airport, from which they routinely shell the city. In fact, shortly before MH17 was allegedly destroyed by a BUK missile near Donetsk, the Kiev regime reinforced its anti-aircraft batteries in the region.

Remarkably, Obama went on to admit that his administration does not know who shot down MH17 or why. He said, “I think it’s too early for us to be able to guess what intentions those who might have launched the surface-to-air missile might have had… In terms of identifying specifically what individual or group of individuals, you know, personnel ordered the strike, how it came about—those are things that I think are going to be subject to additional information that we’re going to be gathering.”

Again, reread Obama’s statement carefully. Behind all the conditional statements and verbal hedging, he is saying nothing about who launched the strike. Obama’s remarks directly contradict those of his own UN ambassador, Samantha Power,

a ‘liberal hawk’ within the Washington administration, a believer in ‘humanitarian wars

who had just stated that there was “credible evidence” that Russia was responsible for the crash, adding, “Russia can end this war. Russia must end this war.”

Obama proceeded to throw a question mark over the entire coverage of the MH17 crash: “I want to point out there will likely be misinformation as well. I think it’s very important for folks to sift through what is factually based and what is simply speculation.”

The picture of the situation that emerges from Obama’s account is remarkable. By his own admission, the United States and its allies are hurtling toward a military confrontation with Russia, under conditions where the White House does not know who is responsible for the MH17 crash and believes powerful political forces are feeding misinformation to the media.

Having already admitted that the CIA did not bother to inform him before spying on German officials, Obama is apparently trying to figure out what his own government is doing—all the while irresponsibly denouncing Russia.

Properly considered, any of the possible explanations for the firing of a missile at MH17 raise the most serious questions about the risk of a direct clash between the Western powers and Russia.

While there is a deafening silence on this in the US media, forces loyal to Kiev may well have fired a BUK missile that took down MH17. The motive that would lie behind such an act is demonstrated by the US media campaign itself: to denounce Russia, step up the campaign for NATO intervention in Ukraine, and seek to whip into line some of Washington’s European allies who are balking at imposing sweeping sanctions against Russia.

The very real possibility that pro-Kiev forces shot down the plane takes into account the close ties between CIA operatives, mercenaries of the US firm formerly known as Blackwater, European intelligence agencies, and the fascist militias that spearhead Kiev’s armed forces. It raises the possibility of direct complicity of sections of the American state in the murder of MH17’s passengers and crew.

Particularly significant are Russian media reports that MH17 briefly crossed the path of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s flight returning from the World Cup and an international summit in Brazil, and that factions in Moscow believe the missile that destroyed MH17 may have been intended for Putin. It is impossible to verify whether such reports are correct. However, if sections of the Russian state come to believe that American and European intelligence agencies sanctioned an assassination attempt on the Russian head of state, the implications are mind-boggling.

On the other hand, if, as the US propaganda campaign claims, MH17 was destroyed by a missile fired by forces allied to or directly aided by Russia, this raises the question of what message the Russian factions involved were trying to send by demonstrating their willingness to murder nearly 300 people. It would certainly show that Moscow takes the crisis in Ukraine far more seriously than Washington realizes, and the situation is extremely dangerous.

The US media and political establishment, in their haste to denounce Russia, appear completely uninterested in these questions. This attitude combines utter recklessness with light-mindedness. What has already been revealed by the MH17 disaster is the deep crisis of Western imperialism and the risk of global war.

United Nations about MH17: here.

Though the investigation of the shoot-down of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 has barely begun, the Obama administration and the U.S. media have sold the world on the narrative blaming Russia’s President Putin, with Secretary of State Kerry sealing the deal, writes Robert Parry: here.

Barely 24 hours after the crash of a Malaysian passenger jet over Ukraine, leading German media outlets are pushing for an escalation of the confrontation with Russia: here.

Newcastle have paid tribute to two fans who died on flight MH17 on their way to support the club in New Zealand: here.

From the BBC:

The appearance of far-right activists, both foreign and home-grown, among the Ukrainian volunteers fighting in east Ukraine is causing unease.

Mikael Skillt is a Swedish sniper, with seven years’ experience in the Swedish Army and the Swedish National Guard. He is currently fighting with the Azov Battalion, a pro-Ukrainian volunteer armed group in eastern Ukraine. He is known to be dangerous to the rebels: reportedly there is a bounty of nearly $7,000 (£4,090; 5,150 euros) on his head.

In a telephone conversation from an undisclosed location, Mr Skillt told me more about his duties: “I have at least three purposes in the Azov Battalion: I am a commander of a small reconnaissance unit, I am also a sniper, and sometimes I work as a special coordinator for clearing houses and going into civilian areas.”

As to his political views, Mr Skillt prefers to call himself a nationalist, but in fact his views are typical of a neo-Nazi.

“It’s all about how you see it,” he says. “I would be an idiot if I said I did not want to see survival of white people. After World War Two, the victors wrote their history. They decided that it’s always a bad thing to say I am white and I am proud.”

‘One stray liberal’

Mr Skillt believes races should not mix. He says the Jews are not white and should not mix with white people.

UK arms export licences for Russia still in place despite claims of embargo – report. Many weapons and military components are still approved for export to Russia, report by four Commons committees says: here.

Terrible death of Malaysian airlines passengers and crew in Ukraine


Malaysian Airlines flight path

295 people, from many countries, on their way from the Netherlands to Malaysia, died a terrible death. First of all, condolelences to all the families and friends of the victims, wishing them strength in this tragedy. There should be an unbiased, thorough investigation how this happened.

Alex Lantier writes about this:

18 July 2014

Before any investigation had been carried out, leading US politicians and media outlets seized upon yesterday’s terrible crash of a Malaysian Airlines flight in east Ukraine, which cost 295 lives, to legitimize stepped-up threats against Russia, posing the danger of all-out war.

The wreckage of Flight MH 17 is strewn over a nine-mile perimeter in an area controlled by pro-Russian militias fighting the Western-backed Ukrainian regime in Kiev. Flight safety experts explained yesterday that the crash could be due to mechanical failure, a bomb inside the jet, or the plane being shot down.

Less than an hour after the crash, however—before even the size and location of the crash site were known—leading US politicians, American media outlets and the US puppet regime in Kiev were insisting that Russia and its east Ukrainian allies had shot down the jetliner with a BUK missile. Ukrainian Interior Ministry official Anton Gerashchenko told the Wall Street Journal: “They clearly thought that it was a military transport plane that they were shooting at. They were the ones who did this.”

US intelligence agencies also claimed the plane had been shot down by a missile, citing satellite data, but without saying who had fired it. Neither Kiev nor Washington presented any evidence, such as satellite images, radar tracking data or eyewitness testimony, to back up their allegations.

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak—whose country faces a second airline disaster this year, after the March 8 disappearance of all 239 people aboard MH 370 from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing—called for investigations to proceed. He said: “The Ukrainian authorities believe that the plane was shot down. At this early stage, however, Malaysia is unable to verify the cause of this tragedy … If it transpires that the plane was indeed shot down, we insist that the perpetrators must be swiftly brought to justice.”

If MH 17 was shot down by a BUK missile system—a Soviet-designed system fielded by both the Russian army (with 250 units) and the Ukrainian army (60 units)—there are three possibilities as to who shot it down. It could be the Kiev regime or the various far-right militias fighting alongside its armed forces, east Ukraine’s pro-Russian separatists, or the armed forces of Russia itself.

Russian media reported that on Wednesday, Kiev dispatched anti-air missile batteries to the area around Donetsk, the largest city held by pro-Russian militias. From there, advanced missile systems like BUK or S-300 could have shot down a plane in the region.

Moscow or pro-Russian separatist militias in eastern Ukraine operating BUK batteries with technical assistance from Russian forces could also have hit the jet. The east Ukrainian separatist forces reportedly seized a BUK battery when they captured a Ukrainian military base earlier this week, and they claimed they had shot down a Ukrainian airplane shortly before MH 17 crashed.

As to whether Kiev, Moscow, or their allied militias shot down MH 17, one can only wait for an investigation to proceed, assuming that the fighting in east Ukraine will allow it to take place. Whoever shot the jetliner down, if it was indeed shot down, the main responsibility for this horrific act lies with the catastrophe unleashed in Ukraine by Washington and its European allies.

The crash took place a day after Washington and the European Union (EU) imposed new sanctions against Russia, amid a bloody civil war in Ukraine in which Washington has backed a far-right, anti-Russian regime in Kiev that came to power in a fascist-led putsch this February. In the past week, mass graves were discovered in east Ukrainian cities captured by the Kiev regime, and Ukrainian artillery bombarded Russian cities near the border.

Washington has sought to continuously intensify political and military tensions in order to encircle Russia, and, by making the situation ever more violent, counter elements in Germany who, for reasons of their own, are nervous about the subordination of German policy to US interests. US officials and media therefore seized on the crash to demand military escalation in Ukraine, a Russian capitulation to US interests in Ukraine, and a total alignment of the European powers on US policy.

The New York Times placed all blame on Russian President Vladimir Putin, even though it admitted that it did not know who was responsible for the crash. Noting that “it may take a while to fully sort out who is responsible,” it called for an end to the Ukraine conflict, asserting: “There is only one man who can stop it—President Vladimir Putin of Russia, by telling the Russian-backed secessionists in Ukraine to end their insurgency and by stopping the flow of money and heavy weaponry to these groups.”

US Republican Senator Lindsay Graham called the crash a “game-changer,” adding: “You would take the sanctions we’ve unilaterally imposed, toughen them and get the world behind them. Start arming the Ukrainian military, that is what I would do.”

Fellow Republican Senator John McCain said: “I think there’s going to be hell to pay and there should be … If these are separatists, which are also Russian, Vladimir Putin should be paying a heavy price.”

Aspiring Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton said the European powers now had a responsibility to impose the deep economic sanctions on Russia that Washington has demanded of them. “They must say, ‘Putin has gone too far and we are not going to stand idly by,’” Clinton said. “There should be outrage in Europe.”

Such a policy of deliberately and continuously provoking a major military power armed with nuclear weapons, such as Russia, is immensely dangerous. In the state of heightened military alert and uncertainty provoked by the Ukrainian civil war, engineered by the Western powers, a passenger jet has been destroyed and nearly 300 lives lost.

One must ask: what is the next “unexpected event” in the spiral of escalation in Ukraine, and will it trigger a direct military confrontation between the United States, the EU, and Russia involving nuclear weapons?

British government censors petition against militarism in Ukraine


This video from the USA, about the NATO summit in Chicago in 2012, is called War Veterans Throw Medals at NATO Summit.

A video from Wales which used to be on YouTube used to say about itself:

27 May 2014

It is less than 100 days to go until the world’s attention is on Wales. It will host the 2014 Nato Summit where more than 60 world leaders will attend. It is said to be one of the biggest events the country will be hosting, but not everyone’s pleased. Cardiff News Plus spoke to Adam Johannes, the Secretary of Stop the War Coalition in Cardiff, about Wales’ economic opportunities with this summit and why they are protesting against it.

From daily News Line in Britain:

Thursday, 29 May 2014

STOP NATO EXERCISES IN UKRAINE!

STOP The War yesterday condemned the government for blocking a petition submitted to its e-petitions website which called for an end to NATO exercises in the Ukraine.

A group of politicians, celebrities and campaigners submitted the petition on 7th May to highlight the participation of UK and US troops on Ukrainian territory in July as part of NATO’s Rapid Trident manoeuvres.

The petition stated: ‘No to Nato military exercises in Ukraine. We note with great concern that UK and US troops will participate alongside Ukrainian troops in joint military exercises on Ukrainian territory in July as part of NATO’s Rapid Trident manoeuvres.

‘Ukraine is not a member of NATO. Its participation in military exercises by a nuclear-armed alliance with a first-strike policy can only further destabilise the situation in the Ukraine, making it more difficult to achieve a political resolution to the crisis.

‘The existence since 1997 of the Rapid Trident exercises, their forerunner Peace Shield, and the associated Sea Breeze naval exercises in the Black Sea, make clear that NATO seeks to include Ukraine as part of its eastward expansion which has been taking place since the end of the Cold War.

‘We call on the UK government to urge the US and other NATO governments to cancel this July’s Rapid Trident exercise, and to give a plain and public undertaking that the UK will not participate.

‘We call on the UK government and the Welsh Assembly to make clear that NATO’s expansionist policies are adding to global instability, and urge everyone to join our protests at the 2014 NATO Summit which is due to take place in Newport, Wales, in September.’

Amongst the signatories are actors Mark Rylance and Miriam Margolyes, Caroline Lucas MP, Baroness Jenny Tonge, Jeremy Corbyn MP, and film director Ken Loach.

On 19th May the Office of the Leader of the House of Commons informed the Stop the War Coalition, the organisation behind the petition, that the Ministry of Defence was responsible for moderating petitions that dealt with the issues raised in the letter.

E-petition guidelines recommend that petitions are moderated within 7 days.

Three weeks after it was submitted, the petition remains censored. No explanation has been offered by the Ministry of Defence, despite an intervention from the Leader of the House of Commons office.

An anti-fascist activist kidnapped by Ukraine’s security forces was released from state captivity yesterday: here.

Ukrainian alleged war criminal wanted by German court


This video from the USA says about itself:

Rabbi Sol Solomon’s Rabbinical Reflection #071 (6/23/13): Michael Karkoc

18 June 2013

Rabbi Sol Solomon offers his thoughts on Michael Karkoc, a 94-year-old Nazi war criminal now living in Minnesota.

From daily The Morning Star in Britain today:

GERMANY: The country’s highest criminal court ruled yesterday that it has jurisdiction over the case of a retired carpenter accused of being a former commander in a nazi SS-led unit.

The Federal Court of Justice ruled that 95-year-old Michael Karkoc’s service in the SS-led Ukrainian Self Defence Legion made him the “holder of a German office” even though he is not German himself.

The court says someone in that role “served the purposes of the nazi state’s world view.”

Federal prosecutors sent the case to the court after deciding there was enough evidence to pursue murder charges against Mr Karkoc, who now lives in the US.

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Ukrainian neonazis murder political opponents


This video is called [Ukrainian anti-nazis] Borotba at Alter Summit 2013 [demonstration] in Athens.

By Alex Lantier:

Political repression mounts in run-up to Ukrainian presidential vote

20 May 2014

As the unelected Western-backed regime in Kiev prepares to hold presidential elections on May 25, right-wing and fascistic forces are attacking and murdering members of opposition parties. This underscores the entirely fraudulent character of the elections arranged by the imperialist powers in an attempt to give the government in Kiev a veneer of democratic legitimacy.

Information about the repression and murder of political opponents of the regime in Kiev is freely available, yet it is systematically covered up and ignored by the media, desperate to give the government set up by the US and European powers the fig leaf of democratic legitimacy.

The fascist militias who led the February 22 putsch are focusing their attacks on parties they see as left-wing. One group that has been targeted is the “Borotba” (“Struggle”) group, which has focused its agitation against fascistic forces in Ukraine. The group published a statement on its website drawing attention to the murder and intimidation of its members.

Andrew Brazhevsky, a member of Borotba was murdered during the May 2 massacre in Odessa. Since the Odessa massacre, according to the statement, the Kiev regime has seized the group’s office in Kharkov, threatened to arrest its Odessa mayoral candidate Alexey Albu, and searched the Kiev residence of Borotba member Andrew Manchuk.

“The central headquarters of Borotba calls on all activists and sympathizers to go underground if it is possible and not to appear at your residence, change your phone numbers, and take other precautions. All regional offices of Borotba must discuss methods of secret work,” the statement read.

The Kiev regime is also attacking members of the Communist Party of Ukraine (KPU), including the 32 KPU legislators in the national parliament. The KPU was refounded after the Stalinist bureaucracy restored capitalism in the USSR; it allied with pro-Russian Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych. It won 13.2 percent of the vote in the 2012 legislative elections, three percent more than the fascist Svoboda party that now plays a key role in the Kiev regime.

On May 6, the legislature expelled the KPU legislative group from parliament in a closed-door parliamentary hearing. Legislator Oleksandr Bryhynets of the ruling Fatherland Party denounced the KPU for allegedly supporting pro-Russian forces that are now protesting the Kiev regime in eastern Ukraine, criticizing “separatist statements made by [KPU leader Peter] Symonenko.”

On May 16, Symonenko announced during a debate on public television that he was withdrawing his presidential candidacy to protest threats against his party since the Kiev putsch. He also criticized the crackdown on pro-Russian protesters in eastern Ukraine.

According to reports in international media, Symonenko was subsequently attacked by fascist gangs.

On Monday, the Kiev regime’s acting president, Oleksandr Turchynov, again asked the Justice Ministry to evaluate evidence of “illegal activities” by the KPU and consider banning it. Turchynov said the KPU has backed pro-Russian fighters in eastern Ukraine, acting “to the detriment” of Ukraine’s interests.

The repression of opposition parties in Ukraine is utterly reactionary. The WSWS [World Socialist Web Site] has extensively documented elsewhere its political differences with Stalinist forces like the KPU. As for Borotba, it has worked with the Left Front in Russia, which includes liberal and pseudo-left groups like the Russian Socialist Movement, the Russian affiliate of the pseudo-left International Viewpoint magazine.

Despite these political differences, the WSWS condemns the fascist acts of murder, assault, and political intimidation perpetrated against them by the Western puppet regime in Kiev.

It is particularly significant that International Viewpoint (published by the United Secretariat and affiliated with the French New Anti-capitalist Party) continues its policy of glorifying the Maidan protests that led to the Kiev putsch, however, even as the fascists attack Borotba.

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