Who Downed Flight 17? The West, of Course
On Russian TV, it's all a conspiracy
By Neal Colgrass, Newser Staff
Posted Jul 21, 2014 4:05 PM CDT
A pro-Russian fighter guards the crash site of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 near the village of Hrabove, eastern Ukraine, Sunday, July 20, 2014.   (AP Photo/Evgeniy Maloletka)

(Newser) – Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, downed by pro-Russian rebels? Bah. Try the Ukrainian military, who mistook it for Putin's presidential plane, or mysterious forces who packed it with corpses and exploded it in the sky. Or whatever. In Russia, Flight 17 conspiracy theories are common on Kremlin-owned or -managed TV channels, Julia Ioffe writes at the New Republic. Russia's version of events "is very different from that on screens in much of the rest of the world, and the discrepancy does not bode well for a sane resolution to this stand-off," she writes. In short, Russians can't believe that their own comrades could have done this.

Obviously the West is "trying to pin it on Russia" unfairly, writes Ioffe, or it's "all part of a nefarious conspiracy to drag Russia into an apocalyptic war with the West." What's more, the media is hyping matters by using Soviet-era crisis words like "traitors" and "fascists" that hark back to a traumatic 20th century. The result: Putin is politically cornered by the very propaganda machine he created (see David Remnick's New Yorker piece for more on that). "None of this looks very good for the West," writes Ioffe, because Putin can't back down if his supporters don't see the disaster "as a game-changer or as anything that should force Russia to end this game."

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Jul 26, 2014 5:54 AM CDT
But then the same can be said for the phoney Iranian leader as well. All lies. In there eyes we are infidels. It is ok to treat infidels like outsiders and with disrespect, and lies.
Jul 26, 2014 5:52 AM CDT
I agree anyone who trusts this man is a serious fool. Don't trust him as far as you can throw him!
Jul 22, 2014 9:16 AM CDT
This is a very serious time for Russians and we all need to pay attention to what's going on. Since Putin has been in office every political move made, if you look at them as a whole and not individually, has been towards the revival of the Soviet Union and everything that goes with it. If people are not careful, we could very easily find ourselves back in the middle of a new and more serious "cold war" with a revitalized Soviet Union, China, N. Korea and host of Middle East wanna-be religious dictatorships. All that is missing is someone to take a leadership position and stabilize the chaos in the Ukraine, Pakistan/Afghanistan, Syria, Iran and Iraq. Putin is showing these lesser leaders that he's not afraid of the UN, the US or anyone and that he IS the leader of the new Soviet Union and new Warsaw Pact. You heard it here first ! ! !