US rushes to blame Russia for MH17 tragedy

By Clifford A. Kiracofe Source:Global Times Published: 2014-7-23 18:28:01

Illustration: Liu Rui/GT

The US regime change policy in Ukraine set the stage for turmoil and for the Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 tragedy. Washington seized on the incident to ramp up its new cold war against Russia, calling into question the ability of the US to properly manage major power relations.

Since 1991, the US spent over $5 billion on various overt and covert programs to cause regime change in Ukraine. It is no secret that Washington's intervention in Ukraine is part of its overall geopolitical strategy against the Russian Federation.

Over the past year, the US ramped up its intervention in Ukraine. Considerable intelligence capabilities are assigned to the Ukraine situation, creating a new phase of overt and covert operations. Powerful US diplomatic support props up the present regime whose legitimacy is questioned by many.

The improper handling of the MH17 tragedy underscores the hysteria dominating Washington's political leadership, as well as the lack of professionalism in the Obama administration's diplomacy.

Over the years, I visited Malaysia several times and was impressed by its friendly people and by its modernity. I myself have flown from Europe to Malaysia, using a direct Malaysia Airlines flight from Paris to Kuala Lumpur. So the present tragedy is particularly poignant for me.

Before any scientific investigation of the incident, Washington went into blaming Russia. Given the Obama administration's bullying attitude and poor foreign policy record, one would by now expect this.

Improper reactions by the US ambassador to the UN and by the White House staff are nothing unusual in recent years. However, the wholly inappropriate remarks from the highest level call into question presidential leadership.

No responsible conclusions about this tragedy can be drawn until the results of a full and impartial investigation by requisite international organizations are made public. The primary international aviation authority is the International Civil Aviation Organization which operates under the UN.

Groundless speculation in the US media insinuates a Russian hand behind the tragedy. Such irresponsible reporting and commentary reinforce Washington's psychological warfare operations against Russia that some euphemistically call "information operations."

The US media of course takes its cues from the White House, and it was no surprise that Samantha Power, the US ambassador to the UN, immediately pointed a finger at Russia. It is well known that she is a close personal friend and advisor of President Barack Obama.

There are many unanswered questions at this point. Speculation has so far been rife about an alleged surface-to-air missile taking the aircraft down. Such a missile necessarily would be fired from a specialized ground installation.

Another possibility is that the aircraft could have been shot down by air-to-air missiles. In this case, a mistake by the Ukrainian air force would be a possibility.

Yet another possibility is that a bomb was placed on the aircraft where the flight originated in Amsterdam. Some experts say the airport security in Amsterdam is not optimal.

The Western media seems to have forgotten a similar air tragedy over Ukraine. This happened in 2001 when the Ukraine military accidently shot down a Russian Tupolev Tu-154M aircraft over the Black Sea.

This Siberia Airlines Flight 1812 originated in Tel Aviv and was destined for Novosibirsk. 12 crew members and some 66 passengers died. Eventually Ukraine paid compensation to the families of survivors. 

The US reaction to the tragedy is irresponsible, provocative, and dangerous. Seemingly minor incidents can lead to war and even to world war.

Washington must drop its counterproductive hysterics and information war. A scientific investigation of the MH17 tragedy must be immediately undertaken.

The author is an educator and former senior professional staff member of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations.

Posted in: Viewpoint

blog comments powered by Disqus