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Eyewitness Evidence of Machine Gun Fire on MH17

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Ukrainian SU-25 attacking Donetsk, CCTV
(Image by CCTV screen grab)
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A monitor for the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) investigative team at the MH17 crash site observed clear signs of machine gun fire on the fuselage of MH17. He revealed this in a CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation) interview on July 29:

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"There have been two or three pieces of fuselage that have been really pockmarked with what almost looks like machine gun fire, very, very strong machine gun fire that has left these unique marks that we haven't seen anywhere else. We have been asked, for example, have we seen any examples of missile. Well, no we haven't. That's the answer. And even if it was there, we don't have those trained eyes to pick that up but now there are experts here who would be able to." Michael Bociurkiw, Monitor, OSCE, CBC interview, July 29

The monitor was clear about his observation of "machine gun fire" but demurred on any evidence of a missile attack. (Image: Ukraine SU25 attacks Donetsk, CCTV

A thirty-year Lufthansa pilot, Peter Haisenko. also offered evidence of a high-powered machine gun attack on MH17. His analysis of the MH17 crash in, a German blog, appeared on July 30. Noting the paucity of photo evidence of the wreckage, Haisenko provided what he described as a high-resolution photo of the cockpit of MH17.

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Haisenko obtained this version of the image before vanished from the Internet. A TinEye Reverse Image Search at 1:45 AM EDT, August 5. Produced only one match for the photograph, credited to AP appearing in a CBC article on July 29. This looks like an exact match for Haisenko's high-resolution image. [This image is no longer in the article]

Based on his limited access to other MH17 images, Haisenko said, "Only the cockpit part shows these peculiar marks of destruction." That may seem to contradict the eyewitness version of OSCE monitor Michael Bociurkiw who reported signs of machine gun fire on the "fuselage" that were "unique marks that we haven't seen anywhere else." There may be no contradiction at all unless Bociurkiw meant "anywhere else [on the plane]." Even if he did, Haisenko was clear that he had limited images of the crash site wreckage. Any questions are overshadowed by two separate reports of clear evidence that MH17 was attacked with a high powered machine gun(s) attack, both on the cockpit and fuselage area.

The eyewitness report of the OSCE monitor and the analysis of high-resolution imagery by the German pilot both crack a big hole in the relentless charges that MH17 was brought down with a BUK class missile fired by "pro Russian separatists." This information also ties into publicly released evidence from the Russian Defense Ministry that a Ukraine fighter jet was in the vicinity of MH17 just before the crash.

The leader of the Australian contingent at the MH17 crash site put another crack in the official story line from President Barack Obama, British Prime Minister David Cameron, and Australian PM Tony Abbott.

Australian PM Abbott appointed Australia Air Force Chief Marshall Angus Houston as Special Envoy to lead Australia's efforts to "help recover, identify and repatriate" that country's passengers on MH17. Houston has this to say about working with Ukraine separatists who control the area of the site.

"We found the people, the separatists there to be professional and cooperative and essentially helpful to our purposes of moving remains and perhaps later on removing some of the pieces of wreckage. One of the important things here is to posture a non threatening force that will go in with civilian specialists""

"The feeling of those there was that they were very comfortable and safe"" Angus Houston, Chief Marshall, Australia Air Force, Insiders, Fran Kelly Interview, July 27

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Compare this with the claims of Secretary of State John Kerry about "reports of drunken separatists piling remains of people into trucks in an unceremonious fashion actually removing them form the location." Kerry failed to mention where the reports came from. We are left to rely on his word alone.

The increase in sanctions against Russia is largely based on blame heaped on that country for the MH17 crash. The evidence is not in. However, we know that an eyewitness to the crash site saw evidence of "very, very strong machine gun fire" and an experienced pilot came to the same conclusion reviewing imagery. We also know that those on the scene in eastern Ukraine report that the separatists are cooperative and the team there, at least the Australians, feel "safe."

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