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Did Major Countries Agree Not to Disclose Key Details in Downing of Malaysian Airlines Flight 17?

September 05, 2014
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Guests

Stephen Cohen

professor emeritus of Russian studies and politics at New York University and Princeton University. His most article for The Nation is "The Silence of American Hawks About Kiev’s Atrocities."

Professor Stephen Cohen says new reports raise questions about why the Malaysia Airlines flight carrying 298 people exploded and crashed in eastern Ukraine, killing everyone on board. "There seems to have been an agreement among the major powers not to tell us who did it," Cohen says. While U.S. and Ukrainian officials say the Boeing 777 was shot down by a Russian-made surface-to-air missile, it is unclear who fired the missile. "There are reports from Germany that the White House version of what happened is not true, therefore you have to look elsewhere for the culprit who did the shooting down," Cohen notes. "They’re sitting on satellite intercepts. They have the images. They won’t release the air controller’s conversations in Kiev with the doomed aircraft. Why not?" See part one of this interview.


TRANSCRIPT

This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.

STEPHEN COHEN: So, bring NATO—I mean, bring Ukraine into NATO, and all this stuff will be up and ready. And then it will just take the shootdown of a Malaysian aircraft, about which everybody has forgotten. Still nobody knows who did it. There seems to have been an agreement among the major powers not to tell us who did it. Was suggested wasn’t the rebels, wasn’t Russia, after all. But it would take something like that, which can happen in these circumstances, to launch something that was unthinkable.

AMY GOODMAN: What do you mean there seems to be an agreement between the major countries?

STEPHEN COHEN: Well, in addition to the insurance company for the airplane, which technically has legal responsibility, the major countries that are doing it, Britain has the black boxes, the Netherlands are involved. There was a report the other day that these parties, these states, have agreed that they would not divulge individually what they have discovered. Now, they’ve had plenty of time to interpret the black boxes. There are reports from Germany that the White House version of what happened is not true, therefore you have to look elsewhere for the culprit who did the shooting down. They’re sitting on satellite intercepts. They have the images. They won’t release the air controller’s conversations in Kiev with the doomed aircraft. Why not? Did the pilot say—let me speculate—"Oh, my god, we’re being fired on by a jet fighter next to us! What’s going on?" Because we know there were two Ukrainian jet fighters. We don’t know, but somebody knows. You might ask—you might get somebody on who’s been investigating this to find out what they actually know.

AMY GOODMAN: Well, we want to thank you very much—

STEPHEN COHEN: That’s a digression. I apologize.

AMY GOODMAN: No, that was very interesting. Thank you very much, Stephen Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian studies and politics at New York University and Princeton, author of a number of books on Russia and the Soviet Union. His latest piece in The Nation, we’ll link to, "Patriotic Heresy vs. the New Cold War: Neo-McCarthyites Have Stifled Democratic Debate on Russia and Ukraine."

This is Democracy Now!, democracynow.org, The War and Peace Report. When we come back, BP could face up to $18 billion in fines. A judge just called BP "grossly negligent" and "reckless." We’ll find out why.


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