Friday, January 10, 2020

Latest on Ukraine plan crash - likely Iranian missile hit, 'a horrible, horrible mistake'

That’s how Chris Hayes characterized it on All in last night. I begin with a thought experiment.

Imagine being in control of an anti-aircraft battery on the very night that your country loosed a barrage of missiles at the “great Satan.” You have every reason to expect retaliation in the form of a bombing campaign. And here is a suspect blip on your radar screen …

Today: That’s one theory bruited about in the media. Another is in the form of denial by the Iranians. Iran: Trust Us, We Didn’t Shoot Down Ukrainian Passenger Jet reports the Daily Beast.

But complicating this sad affair is the lack of security at the crash site. Also reported by The Daily Beast, Scavengers Are Taking Evidence From the Iran Plane Crash Site, CBS Reports.

Yesterday: The story is not yet ended but here is more of what is emerging from the investigation.

Iranian Missile Blew Passenger Jet Out of the Sky, U.S. Suspects reported by Spencer Ackerman, Adam Rawnsley, Erin Banco, and Betsy Swan at The Daily Beast. The Ukrainian airliner that crashed in Iran the night of the missile attacks on bases in Iraq appears to have been shot by the Iranians with a Russian-made anti-aircraft system.

In the hours since the PS752 crash, a number of videos purporting to show the flight in its final moments have surfaced on social media. Two videos, verified as likely authentic by The New York Times visual investigations team appear to show the impact of the aircraft on the ground in a suburb of Tehran.

On Thursday, a new video surfaced on Twitter and Telegram purporting to show a flying object streak through the night sky and hitting an aircraft shortly before a loud explosion can be heard. It’s unclear yet whether the footage depicts the final moments of PS752 but investigators at Bellingcat have determined that the footage was filmed in Western Parand, near where the flight crashed, and shows the known trajectory of the flight before it crashed.

Video Shows Ukrainian Plane Being Hit Over Iran (reported by By Christiaan Triebert, Malachy Browne, Sarah Kerr and Ainara Tiefenthäler. The New York Times has obtained video of the moment a Ukrainian airliner was hit minutes after takeoff from Tehran.

Video verified by The New York Times appears to show an Iranian missile hitting a plane above Parand, near Tehran’s airport, the area where a Ukrainian airliner stopped transmitting its signal before it crashed on Wednesday.

A small explosion occurred when a missile hit the plane, but the plane did not explode, the video showed. The jet continued flying for several minutes and turned back toward the airport, The Times has determined. The plane flew toward the airport ablaze before it exploded and crashed quickly, other videos verified by The Times showed.

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