04:52 GMT +310 December 2018
Listen Live
    A flower is seen near debris at the crash site of a Russian airliner in al-Hasanah area in El Arish city, north Egypt, November 1, 2015.

    Pentagon's Spy Satellites See What Washington Wants Them to See?

    © REUTERS / Mohamed Abd El Ghany
    US
    Get short URL
    Russia's Worst Air Accident: A321 Crashes in Sinai (273)
    26594

    The MH17 and A321 tragedies reveal that something does not add up when it comes to the US intelligence data gathered via the Pentagon's network of surveillance satellites, American investigative reporter Dave Lindorff asserted.

    The MH17 and A321 tragedies reveal that something does not add up when it comes to the US intelligence data gathered via the Pentagon's network of surveillance satellites, American investigative reporter Dave Lindorff asserted.

    In short, it is a matter of timing and availability. In the first case, no classified information based on satellite imagery has been leaked or made public months after MH17 crashed in the Donetsk region. In the second case, it appeared just days after a Russian passenger jet disintegrated in mid-air over Egypt's Sinai Peninsula.

    An Airbus A321 operated by the Russian airline Kogalymavia crashed on October 31. Two days later, US media reported that a spy satellite detected a heat flash in the skies above the desert shortly before the incident. Reports cited unnamed US officials.

    Russian Airbus A321 passenger airliner crash site in Egypt
    Press-service of Russian Emergency Situations Ministry
    Russian Airbus A321 passenger airliner crash site in Egypt

    Sinai has been plagued by violence since Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi was removed from power but it is not a war zone. In mid-2014, civil war in Ukraine was at its apex. Therefore, "it is a certainty that the US had moved not one but multiple spy satellites into position to monitor the region around the clock by the time of the Flight 17 shoot-down," Lindorff noted.

    Yet, the US has never released any proof that self-defense forces in eastern Ukraine shot down the plane. The investigative reporter assumed that if there were any images proving this scenario, they would have been leaked to mainstream media.

    Lindorff offers other possible explanations:

    "Those photos that exist show something quite different, like a BUK being launched by Ukrainian government sources, or else, perhaps the current claim that satellite images show a heat signature around the Russian plane in Egypt are false (no image has been provided to back up the assertion of a heat signature)."

    This photo taken on July 26, 2014 shows flowers, left by parents of an Australian victim of the crash, laid on a piece of the Malaysia Airlines plane MH17, near the village of Hrabove (Grabove), in the Donetsk region
    © AFP 2018 / BULENT KILIC
    This photo taken on July 26, 2014 shows flowers, left by parents of an Australian victim of the crash, laid on a piece of the Malaysia Airlines plane MH17, near the village of Hrabove (Grabove), in the Donetsk region

    Why are the MH17 and A321 tragedies so different when it comes to US intelligence data? Lindorff suggests looking at a bigger picture. Unlike the US, Russia has been quite successful in its counterterrorism efforts in Syria.

    "Perhaps the thinking at the White House is that by suggesting it was a bomb, and not a structural defect that brought down a Russian civilian aircraft, killing hundreds of Russian citizens, the Russian people might logically link that purported bombing to Putin's actions in Syria and his antagonism of [ISIL] and al-Nusra, and might then turn against him," he noted.

    Whatever the explanation, Lindorff is convinced that if the US had a satellite over Sinai, it surely had one over Ukraine.

    If Washington is "willing to announce that its satellite caught the moment of the explosion of Flight 9268 and is willing to talk about that, it should also be willing to show what its satellites saw when Flight 17 was downed," he concluded.

    Topic:
    Russia's Worst Air Accident: A321 Crashes in Sinai (273)

    Related:

    Egypt, Russia Could Find Causes of A321 Crash Better Than Other States - UK
    A321 Crash: BBC Under Fire After Doctor Who Shows Plane Being Shot From Sky
    MH17 Report Leaves More Questions Than Answers, Full Transparency Needed
    'Partially Blind' Europe, 'Greedy' Kiev Responsible for MH17 Tragedy
    Tags:
    satellite data, intelligence information, satellite imagery, A321 crash, MH17 Crash, United States, Russia
    Community standardsDiscussion
    Comment via FacebookComment via Sputnik