MH17 – hardcore Dutch war propaganda

January 24, 2015

In this article I will dissect a particularly vicious piece of propaganda disseminated by RTL Nieuws on December 22nd 2014. For practical purposes split up in four separate sections with transcripts and my comments.

Question not resolved in this article: how could one lying anonymous witness controlled by Ukraine’s secret service be the single source for a seven minute prime time news broadcast in the Netherlands?


Transcript section 1:

New evidence about the attack on MH17. Photos crucial for the investigation.

Correspondent Olaf Koens:
I spoke to an eyewitness who took photographs while MH17 was shot down. He says: “it was a missile, and it came from rebel territory”.

Transcript section 2:

Anchor woman:
Good evening. RTL news has important new evidence about the attack on MH17.

Anchor man:
A series of photos of crucial moments right after the attack. We have the photos and a conversation with the person who made them.

Anchor woman
Based on these photographs we conducted an investigation which confirms that MH17 most probably was downed by a missile fired from pro-Russian separatists controlled territory. Prosecutors confirm that these photographs are part of the criminal investigation. We discuss this with correspondent Olaf Koens in Moscow and research correspondent Hester van Yperen at the Public Prosecution office in Rotterdam. First over to Olaf Koens, Olaf:

Olaf Koens
Last month I visited a man who was eyewitness of the downing of MH17 and he has proof. He fled the area a while ago but he tells his story. On his request we made him unrecognizable and for the sake of his own safety he cannot be traced easily. He explains in his own words what he saw and heard July 17 and after that will never forget.

It was 4:20 pm. We heard an explosion. Not a very loud one. Fifteen seconds later a loud bang followed and all the windows were shaking.

Olaf Koens
Our source lived not far away from the MH17 crash site. He took photographs and here they are [1m40s]. If you look carefully, a white trace can be seen rising straight up in the sky. The trace of a missile. Here’s the trace and we edited the photos to show it more clearly. Five minutes later he made another photograph. This time not the contrail of the missile but the smoke of MH17 that in the meantime had crashed.

Koens asks the eyewitness
What do you think the photos show? What do they proof?

I photographed a white stripe. First I didn’t pay much attention to it. For me it was just a white stripe that went from the horizon in the direction of the clouds and then suddenly stopped. Only later I understood what it was.

For the source it is clear. It was the pro-Russian rebels who shot down MH17, because the area from which the missile was fired is under their control. Now for him it is before and after MH17, he says.

Koens asks the eyewitness
Why have you, despite all risks for your own safety, agreed to give this interview?

I want justice to prevail…..I want….the people…the ones who did this will be punished.

End transcipt 2

Comment 1
Olaf Koens [0m53s]: “Last month I visited a man who was eyewitness of the downing of MH17 and he has proof.”

“Last month”, about a month before December 22nd. Why would RTL Nieuws interview such a unique witness but keep his testimony on the shelf such a long time instead of informing the general public and specifically the family members of the deceased on board MH17 immediately?

Another anonymous witness discredited as fake – same period.

Second half of November a Dutch delegation under leadership of Dutch FM Koenders visited Ukraine. Ukraine’s secret service SBU Ukrainian claimed it had foiled a Russian-backed attack on the Dutch officials. During a press conference a video was shown of a female suspect said to have been trained by the Russians.

She said that her Russian contact ordered her to carry out an attack on the Dutch delegation during a visit to a building in Kharkov on November 8th, where the remains of the MH17 victims are kept.
In The Hague the report about the possible attack has been dismissed as Ukrainian war propaganda.

RTL Nieuws and Olaf Koens reported this:


We go to Moscow, there’s correspondent Olaf Koens…. well Olaf, how do you read this story?

Olaf Koens
Well Rick, it seems like a spy novel written by John le Carré. First of all let’s be clear about the fact that anything the Ukrainian secret service makes public must be taken with a big pinch of salt. In the past we have been put on the wrong track by the Ukrainians and secondly you have to ask yourself in regard to such happenings as these: who benefits?

Motive for RTL Nieuws to delay the unique witness account: better not show two anonymous witnesses in the same period of which one already has been discredited.

Other possible motive: timing. Journalists need stories not necessarily when they happen, but when they are useful for whatever reason. “that’s how it works”, real pro’s will tell you.

Other possible motive: it takes time to verify all information and additional research is needed. In this article the argument of ‘professionalism and accuracy’ will be dissected thoroughly on many counts.

Comment 2
Completely fabricated stories of anonymous witnesses are used in the information war to create false memories in the heads of the target audience (you). People will remember events that never took place. Notorious example is the 1991 Kuwait incubator story. This PR-stunt manipulated public opinion in the United States to support the first Gulf war.

In the MH17 case anonymous witnesses are just as problematic. To understand the structural nature of mass deception it is necessary to understand the concept of PsyOp and Maskirovka, explained in detail in my article Lying by Omission.

Transcript section 3:

Anchor woman
…And that gives us valuable information about where the missile came from.

Anchor man
Our research department has investigated the photos and presented them to experts. Because these photos are probably an important link to the culprits, people that are responsible for the death of 298 human beings.

Research correspondent Hester van Yperen
These photographs were taken on July 17. We investigate if they are real. Different experts do not see any sign of manipulation. Also Theo Rikken, former missile expert of the Dutch Ministry of Defense, looks at the photos.

Missile expert Theo Rikken:
What you see here, with high probability, is the trace of a missile that has been launched from about here. The missile contrail normally rises straight up, but due to the wind the trail is displaced.

Research correspondent Hester van Yperen
RTL Nieuws wants to know where the contrail started. We get support from satellite company NEO and TNO Delft. They draw a line from the photographer to the missile contrail. That leads us to an agricultural field from which the missile possibly has been fired. Missile systems such as BUK create a strongly burnt area after firing.

Satellite expert Corné van der Sande
On the image before the disaster we see a normal agricultural field with wheat. But on this spot after the disaster we see a black spot. And this black spot could be scorched earth. You can also see a wall of earth. I suspect the farmer tried to extinguish the fire by making this wall.

Missile expert Theo Rikken
In Ukraine they simply put these systems into the fields. So, if a missile leaves, the ignition of the rocket engine causes the grass to burn.

Research correspondent Hester van Yperen
We compare our research with other reconstructions from a journalist who visited the burnt site and a journalist who investigated the convoy of a BUK missile complex. And the agricultural field is located in an area that on July 17 was I the hands of pro-Russian rebels. Our investigation confirms that flight MH17 most probably is downed by a surface to air missile fired from rebel territory.

End transcript 3

Comment 3
Research correspondent Hester van Yperen: “These photographs were taken on July 17.
Really? This is what the witness claims and thus should be checked and verified instead of simply accepted as fact by RTL Nieuws Research.

Fact: it is extremely unlikely the first photo in a series of three was taken July 17th. That day the weather was cloudy in the entire MH17 crash area.

More important, the first photo the witness presented does not show the launch of a BUK-M1missile at all, but the first shot of ground-to-ground missile Grad BM21 system fired any time between March and July 16th as explained in minute detail here.

[Update May 31, 2015 here I myself jumped to conclusions. Recently presented research by @MichaKobs suggests the plume photo is a fake. See here and here]

Comment 4
Research correspondent Hester van Yperen refers to a journalist who visited the burnt agricultural field from where allegedly the BUK-M1 was launched. The journalist she refers to is Roland Oliphant of The Telegraph. His report dated July 22 can be read here and his observations have been analyzed here in detail.

Above photo shows the very distinct track of a BUK-M1 stand alone unit. Total combat weight of the unit is 32,400 Kilograms. If you click the photo you can watch a short video and watch how the unit moves in the field.

Oliphant found tracks of agricultural machines but nothing remotely even possibly representing the tracks of a BUK-M1. Neither did he find any other (circumstantial) proof of a missile having been fired from this location.

Nonetheless RTL Research ordered a 28 page ‘Smoke plume analysis’. The scientific report written by NEO and TNO Delft comes to this conclusion:
On the basis of the performed above sightline analysis and scorch analysis we consider it possible that the smoke plume originating from
this abnormal wheat field.”

Instead of presenting Oliphant’s report as accumulating evidence, on the contrary it should be regarded a strong indicator no missile was launched form that wheat field at all.

Transcript section 4:

Anchor man
We continue our conversation with Olaf Koens in Moscow and Hester van Yperen at the Prosecution office in Rotterdam. Olaf, why did it take so long for these photos to surface?

Olaf Koens
Well, our source almost immediately after the crash handed over the photographs to the Ukrainian secret service via an acquaintance. Later in Kiev he also talked to an Australian and Dutch investigator and handed over his camera to the investigation team. But meanwhile he got frustrated. He is angry it takes such a long time for the truth to come to light. Therefore he got in touch with some journalists. One of them the well known Russian journalist Sergei Parkhomenko. Via him we became aware of the existence of these photos. He gave them to us and our research department started to investigate. Our source mostly wants the truth to prevail once and for all.

Anchor Woman
Hester, what are the next steps in the investigation. The aim of course is to find the perpetrators?

Research correspondent Hester van Yperen
Yes, of course the public prosecution is now going to combine all types of evidence and the material we presented today is, well, crucial. The photos were taken by an eyewitness exactly at the moment this terrible tragedy happened. The contrail, but also the images right after the crash. I presume this witness will be interviewed by the public prosecutor. Besides this testimony the prosecution of course also has other evidence such as wreckage parts. Also there’s shrapnel found in the bodies of victims. These could also lead to traces of a missile. The prosecution really needs all this kind of evidence to answer the question: who was responsible for the downing of flight MH17.

Anchor man
Hester and Olaf, thank you both.

End transcript 4

Comment 5
Koens explains the witness handed the photos over to a friend who posted the first and third photo on twitter July 17. This friend has a twitter account and he calls himself ‘Huyevi Torez’ [fucked up Torez].

Clearly ‘Huyevi Torez’ presents himself as a true Ukrainian patriot and the day of the crash he was extremely active, reporting ‘missile shot down bird‘ , than visited the crash site and photographed a ‘dead baby lying in the field‘, only after that he posts the ‘first photo‘ he got from his friend and finally he makes a ‘calculation with a geolocation map‘ from where the alleged missile that brought down MH17 was fired.

Huyevi also proudly mentions in one of his tweets he as a high tech Canon EOS 5D Mark II, the lens Canon EF 100-400 f / 4.5-5.6L ISUSM. Exactly the type of camera that could have recorded the ‘first photo’ in video mode and the ‘second photo’ in photo resolution.
What a coincidence his friend the witness has a top notch camera with the same capabilities! Or maybe he and the friend is just one and the same person?

RTL Nieuws also having this information should have questioned the neutrality and impartiality of the witness instead of simply accepting he came forward five month’s after the crash purely driven by the motive that “the truth must prevail”.

Comment 6 – The gravest violation of journalistic standards

RTL Nieuws must have considered the risk the witness is a compromised opponent actually supporting the rebels and under extreme pressure forced to work for the other side. Torture is modus operandi of SBU.

“We tortured some folks” Ukrainian style [very graphic 18+]:

Twitter account of ‘Huyevi Torez’ has many pro-rebel tweets in the period March-May. These can be staged by him being a SBU-informant working undercover, but they can also be an expression of real dedication to the rebel cause. Based on information from open sources it is impossible to be sure his friend the ‘witness’ participated in the interview voluntarily.

Comment 7
Ukraine’s secret service has no credibility whatsoever. It is very shameful Western media even dare to quote from this criminal organization.

Instead, why not inform the public about:

1) Ukrainian BUK-M1 near the crash site
2) Many witnesses showing their face in public declaring they saw a military jet in the vicinity of MH17 during the crash.

Why not? Because it doesn’t fit the narrative.

The task of the Netherlands as head of the Joint Investigation Team is to facilitate a cover-up and avoid geopolitical repercussions in case Russia and the rebels are completely innocent.

Question not resolved in this article: how could one lying anonymous witness controlled by Ukraine’s secret service be the single source for a seven minute prime time news broadcast in the Netherlands?