/ Xeni Jardin / 8 am Sun, Jul 20 2014
  • Submit
  • About Us
  • Contact Us
  • Advertise here
  • Forums
  • Rebels seize MH17 plane crash black boxes and bodies, human remains shipped on train to unknown site

    Rebels seize MH17 plane crash black boxes and bodies, human remains shipped on train to unknown site

    Xeni Jardin recaps the latest news from Ukraine, where securing the crash site of Flight MH17 remains an open question

    Flowers left on debris of flight MH17 (Reuters)

    On Sunday morning, reporters at the site of the crashed Malaysia Airlines flight 17 in Eastern Ukraine say armed pro-Russia militants have forced emergency workers to hand over all bodies and body parts recovered so far. The human remains were then loaded onto refrigerated train cars bound for a rebel-held city.

    Ukraine's deputy prime minister Volodymyr Groysman said 192 bodies and eight body parts were loaded onto the railway cars.

    The rebels say they also have the plane's "black box" data recorders, and will hand them over to the International Civil Aviation Organization.

    Most of the recovered bodies are thought to have been put in refrigerated rail wagons


    Most of the recovered bodies are thought to have been put in refrigerated rail wagons

    This development comes after days of global outrage over how the remains of the MH17 crash victims and the crash site itself are being treated--and how that chaos makes a thorough, impartial investigation impossible.

    Monitors from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe walk near a train at a railway station in the town of Torez, Ukraine, on Sunday. Employees and local residents say it contains bodies of passengers of the crashed Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777.


    Monitors from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe walk near a train at a railway station in the town of Torez, Ukraine, on Sunday. Employees and local residents say it contains bodies of passengers of the crashed Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777.

    Ukraine and pro-Putin separatists each accuse the other of firing a surface-to-air missile at the plane, which was flying at roughly 33,000 feet from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur over the war zone in eastern Ukraine. Both sides deny responsibility. All people on the plane, 283 passengers and 15 crew, are presumed dead.

    From AP:

    Associated Press journalists saw reeking bodies baking in the summer heat Saturday, piled into body bags by the side of the road or still sprawled where they landed in the verdant farmland in eastern Ukraine after their plane was shot out of the sky Thursday.

    By Sunday morning, AP journalists saw no bodies and no armed rebels at the crash site. Emergency workers were searching the sprawling fields only for body parts.

     A pro-Russian separatist stands on guard at the crash site of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17, near the settlement of Grabovo in the Donetsk region July 19, 2014.    REUTERS/Maxim Zmeyev


    A pro-Russian separatist stands on guard at the crash site of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17, near the settlement of Grabovo in the Donetsk region July 19, 2014. REUTERS/Maxim Zmeyev

    Alexander Pilyushny, an emergency worker combing the crash site for body parts Sunday morning, told reporters he and other workers had no choice but to hand the bodies over to the rebels. "They are armed and we are not," Pilyushny said. "The militiamen came, put the bodies onto the trucks and took them away."

    Monitors from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe inspect a refrigerator wagon, which according to employees and local residents contains bodies of passengers of the crashed Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 plane, at a railway station in the town of Torez, Donetsk region July 20, 2014. REUTERS/Maxim Zmeyev


    Monitors from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe inspect a refrigerator wagon, which according to employees and local residents contains bodies of passengers of the crashed Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 plane, at a railway station in the town of Torez, Donetsk region July 20, 2014. REUTERS/Maxim Zmeyev

    From a powerful report by Peter Baker and colleagues at the New York Times:

    [T]he horror of the crash site was on full display. Small white pieces of cloth dotted the grassy farmland, marking the locations of bodies. The smell of burned flesh hung heavily near a broken hulk of metal on the road. A foot with part of a leg lay nearby.

    The scene was strangely empty. There was no yellow tape, no investigators poring over the giant metal carcass. Four local rebels wearing fatigues and carrying hunting rifles wandered through the ruins, poking around the debris more out of curiosity. On the grass were photographs of a family vacation, a baby announcement postcard and a boarding pass.

    One of the men, who had never seen a boarding pass, asked what it was. Another picked up an English-language tour book and flipped through it before throwing it back in the heap. “I can’t read it anyway,” he said.

    Emergency workers on Saturday carried a body from the site of the Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 crash in the Donetsk region. For many, the disaster brought home a struggle that had seemed distant. Photo: Maxim Zmeyev/Reuters


    Emergency workers on Saturday carried a body from the site of the Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 crash in the Donetsk region. For many, the disaster brought home a struggle that had seemed distant. Photo: Maxim Zmeyev/Reuters

    The Guardian's Shaun Walker, in Ukraine:

    The Guardian witnessed the arrival of a delegation from the international monitoring body the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) at around midday local time to inspect the wagons, accompanied by a convoy of heavily armed and nervous rebels. As they opened the metal door to one of the carriages to inspect the interior, a stench of death wafted out, and black body bags were visible inside.

    "The special monitoring mission in its third day dealing with the incident has now monitored the location where bodies are being refrigerated in three wagons," said Alexander Hug, the deputy chief of the mission. "We have not been able to count them as that would be too difficult in this situation."

    Michael Bociurkiw, the spokesman for the mission, added: "Going inside the wagons is impossible without special equipment. The stench is very, very bad."

    The New York Times is creating an index of the dead, with stories about their lives.

    Below, yet another purportedly intercepted phone call between pro-Russia rebel commanders, recorded by Ukraine intelligence. This one deals with the matter of who has control over the black boxes, and the bodies. US intelligence officials have not denied the validity of the previously-released recordings. Each of these has notably included what are said to be the actual phone numbers of the people whose voices we're hearing on the calls.

    Related Boing Boing posts:

    • "Twitterbot catches Russian State Media anonymously editing MH17 Wikipedia entry"

    •"Photos from the Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash site, in Ukraine (warning: graphic images)"

    •"Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 reported shot down in Ukraine near Russian border"

    / / 173 COMMENTS

    / / /

    Notable Replies

    1. GregS says:

      When someone tries to cover up evidence of a crime, he's doing so because he was part of the crime. I think that right now the main aim of Moscow is to hide enough evidence to prevent this crime from being linked back to Putin's government. They've probably already concluded that the involvement of the pro-Russian rebels can't be covered up.

    2. You've got two scenarios here- a few dumbasses with missiles fucked up and shot the wrong thing, or a vast global conspiracy involving dozens of governments, mainstream media outlets, independent news outlets, and social media users, all working together in perfect concert to pull off a false flag attack and subsequent cover up.

      Sometimes things are the mainstream media consensus because they're right. And because the alternative is absurd. Going with the absurd explanation just because it's not the MSM line is a good way to head off into crazy Alex Jones land.

    3. Yet that’s exactly what you’ve been doing far more than anyone else in this thread. You vehemently denounce any hypothesis or observation of fact that runs counter to your resolutely pro-Putin agenda and conspiracy theories. Somehow only you know the truth, while the rest of us are dupes of the Obama-controlled MSM.

    4. OK, I've held off and not replied to your trolling so far, but right there, that's where you said too, too much. You clearly have no clue what you're talking about. You don't "take your strategic port" from another country (who happens to own it) just because they're in a weakened position, and that's exactly what Putin is trying to do.

      The Crimean Pennisula is a strategic stronghold on the Black Sea, and that was why Russia sought it when all hell broke loose at the time that President President Viktor Yanukovych fled Kiev (in Ukraine). BOTH Ukraine and Crimea were/are independent states - and had been since the fall of the USSR in 1991. At that time - even with Mikhail Gorbachev in residence at his vacation home in Crimea - a referendum was held on independence for Crimea, and it passed by 54%. That 54% was for was lowest count in the area, but it was for a place populated by 60% people of Russian descent. Crimea was too small to go it alone, so they agreed to be tied to Ukraine if they could retain most of their independence. The countries are/were bound by several treaties.

      The reason that Crimea was the base of Russia's Black Sea Fleet at the time Ukranian President fled, is because Ukraine with Crimea signed a treaty with Russia (called the Treaty on Friendship, Cooperation and Partnership) between the countries in 1997, and it gives Russia the right to harbor their ships in Sevastopol (no ownership is implied). Russia had no immediate claim to the Crimean territory prior to the internal conflict, and hasn't since 1991.

      Putin is resting on the backs of the separatists (who want Crimea to no longer be an independent country, but instead, to be returned to Mother Russia). They don't represent the full population, even though Crimea has a more heavily-Russian population than other areas of Ukraine. Rather, the entire Russian population of Crimea is about 55-60%, and only some of those people are separatists. Many want peace, and want nothing to do with Putin. BTW, the invading Russians now occupying Crimea are claiming they have the right to Crimea because historically Russia has had a lot of control of the territory. So, the locally-living separatists are tying themselves to that history of occupation. Meanwhile, they're also ousting native people from the peninsula - the Muslim Tartars. Since Russia annexed the territory they have begun preventing those people from returning to their homeland - where they have an even longer history.

      That's my one long post on this topic.

    5. In this country, Ygret, the crime would be negligent homicide/manslaughter. You don't have anything to gain from shooting a gun out your window either, but if you shoot at a squirrel and you hit a passerby in the head, that wasn't an accident. It was a crime.

      According to international journalist reports (not our government) there was a Buk launcher missing one missile immediately after the incident and there was a retracted Facebook post associated with the rebel leader bragging about defending his airspace. That's close enough to proof for most any rational person, independent of what our government says. And since they fired a missile without knowing exactly what they were firing at, that counts as a reckless act which makes it a crime. not an accident.

      GregS is right. No one ever covers up being right.

    Continue the discussion bbs.boingboing.net

    168 more replies

    Participants