Bellingcat uses assumptions to make claims instead of irrefutable proof!

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Update May 29, 2018

As conspiracy believers in May 2018 sent out Tweets using this blogpost showing Bellingcat is wrong, some clarification needs to be done.

In a May 24, 2018 press conference JIT stated it has enough evidence which shows Russian army transported a BUK TELAR from its base in Kursk to Eastern Ukraine. This BUK TELAR was involved in the downing of MH17. So while at the time of the Bellingcat report Bellingcat jumped to conclusions about the presense of the BUK in Millerovo, two years later those conclusions turned out to be proven.


 

In the Bellingcat narrative Russian BUK number 3×2 was transported in a military convoy from its home base in Kursk via border town Millerovo and via Donetsk to its launch position south of Snizhne.  The convoy left Kursk at June 23, 2014.

The convoy consisted of mainly vehicles of the 2nd battalion of the 53rd anti-aircraft brigade . Bellingcat made a nice overview of the route.

BUK 3×2 is the BUK which according Bellingcat, based on photos published by Paris Match, was used to shot down MH17.

However, there are no photos nor videos which confirm BUK 3×2 was near the Russian/Ukraine border town of Millerovo, despite several claims by Bellingcat.

The author did  four attempts to get a comment from Eliot Higgins on why he states BUK 3×2 has been in Millerovo without photo or video confirming that claim. However Higgins decided to not respond to request from the author.

So I tried to get an answer from one one of the anonymous authors of Bellingcat, the Dutch guy called Daniel. I had a long discussion on Twitter. Again I asked: why does BC claim BUK 3×2 was in Millerovo while there is no photo proof?

I did not get an anwer other than ‘it is logical BUK 3×2 was in Millerovo’. Another response from Daniel was  the reply shown below meaning something like:

As I already said: ‘if there is a cactus in a wood, it does not mean there is no wood’
Daniel Romein, Bellingcat, January 28 2016

cactus-reply-daniel

Probably for Bellingcat it is also logical BUK 3×2 went first all the way West from the Russian border to Donetsk, then back Eastwards to Snizhne. Then after shot down of MH17 North towards Luhansk. It would be more logical to cross the border south of Snizhne, shoot and go back the same route.

Bellingcat has  a strange way of logical thinking. Or is it wishfull thinking?

Back to the BUK 3×2 route.

BUK 3×2 was last seen on video in the Russian  city Alexeyevka which is an estimated 350 km drive from the town which Bellingcat claims BUK 3×2 was last seen.

map

The reasoning for Bellingcat to conclude BUK 3×2 must have been at border town Millerova is that vehicles that were seen in the same convoy in which BUK 3×2 was part of (350 km from Millerova) , where spotted near Millerovo in a convoy .

That is like police  accusing someone of a crime because he was seen with his criminal friends a week before the crime in a totally different place than the crimescene.

MH17 and the killing of 298 innocent people needs a serious investigation based on irrefutable evidence. 

It is possible the convoy split up in Alexeyevka. A part of the convoy continued their way heading to Millerova. A part could including BUK 3×2 could have returned to their base. One of the reasons to leave the base and return was that Putin put the army on a high alert. The convoy could be a training mission to check how quickly it was able to hit the road.

A user with nickname Rob made an interesting comment at the Bellingcat website about the weird convoy movements in Alexeyevka.

The convoy was seen in Gorodishche [Coordinates: 51.137286, 38.064599]. But in doing so, it will approach Alexeyevka from the North, and it would be almost impossible for the convoy to go through the Magnit store intersection in Alexeyevka, which you would only get through if you were to approach Alexeyevka from the south.The Magnit store intersection is seen in this video.

Nobody knows the whereabouts of BUK 3×2 since it was last seen in Alexeyevka!

 

Bellingcat reasoning explained

One of the BUK vehicles seen in the convoy leaving Kursk was a BUK command post. This had serial number 200 painted  on the side. The same BUK serial 200 was seen in a video made near Millerovo.

The reasoning of Bellingcat is: if BUK 3×2 and BUK 200 were seen in the same convoy leaving their base, and if BUK 200 was seen in Millerovo, BUK 3×2 must have been as well in Millerovo!

Without photo/video proof this is jumping to conclusions.

The serial numbers of 53rd Brigade vehicles

The 53rd Brigade is made up of three battalions: the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd. The 1st and 2nd battalions were active in the summer of 2014, while the 3rd Battalion was used for training students and conscripts.

The number seen on most of the BUK and support vehicles is such that it can identifiy the battalion and  battery the vehicle is used by.

The first digit is the battallion, the second is the battery and the last digit is a sequence number. BUK 312 for example belongs to the 3rd batallion, 1st battery. The number 1,2 and 3 of the last digit is always assigned to a BUK TELAR launcher.

BUK 3×2 is the only vehicle seen in the convoy which belongs to the 3rd battallion. All other vehicles belong to the 2nd battallion (the first digit always starts with a 2). It is remarkable BUK 3×2 is the only 3rd battallion vehicle in a convoy of the 2nd battallion.

Each battallion has 9 BUK TELAR launchers, a command post vehicle , a Snow Drift radar and supporting vehicles like cranes to load missiles on the TELAR launchers.

The image below shows a command post registered with number 200. This makes it the command post of the 2nd battallion. This command post vehicle was part of the convoy documented by Bellingcat.

200-commandpost

Overview of 4 Bellingcat claims  that BUK 3×2 was seen in Millerovo

Claim 1: Bellingcat claims in this post written by Eliot Higgins:

“One of a series of videos that shows a convoy containing the Buk linked to the downing  MH17 was reportedly filmed near the town of Millerovo”

 

Claim 2: Bellingcat repeats its claim (“BUK 3×2 was seen in Millerovo”) in a report titled Tracking the Trailers: Investigation of MH17 Buk’s Russian Convoy

buk3x2

Claim 3: Also in this PDF  titled “the open source evidence” Bellingcat suggests BUK 3×2 was in the town of Millerovo.

millerovo-buk-pdf

claim 4: Article written by Eliot Higgins here.

BUK3x2-to-millerovo

However  there is no sign of  BUK 3×2 in Millerovo!!

This post written by Veli-Pekka Kivimäki and  published at Bellingcat confirms BUK 3×2 was not seen in the Millerovo video.

millerovo-confirmed

When the author of one of Bellingscat’s report was asked how BUK 3×2 is linked to Millerovo this is the response.

response

As you can read in the beginning of this post: I tried to get an explanation for the claim from Daniel Romein and Eliot Higgins.

 

The video made in Millerovo which does not show BUK 3×2

Below a screenshot and the actual video made near Millerovo.

millerovo-buk-200-sek-26

 

This was the (confirmed by photo/video ) route of the convoy BUK 3×2 was part of.

Gabriele Wolff has some more details on the lack of proof  here. 

Below is a list of video’s of the convoy.

Neznamovo

 http://bellingcat-vehicles.silk.co/page/0017-Neznamovo%3A-Buks-on-trailers-near-gas-station
Filmed at Neznamovo on June 23rd = http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c4Pigqq8A74
Buk 3×2 at 0:01

Stary Oskol area

http://bellingcat-vehicles.silk.co/page/0003-Troitsky%3A-Buk-convoy-making-a-turning
Filmed on June 23rd.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r_zQVxMc4zo
Buk 3×2 at 0:20 and further

http://bellingcat-vehicles.silk.co/page/0004-Stary-Oskol%3A-Buk-convoy-rides-into-town
Original: Odnoklassiki, published June 25th  http://ok.ru/video/13856344715
Buk 3×2 at 2:01

http://bellingcat-vehicles.silk.co/page/0013-Stary-Oskol%3A-Buks-on-trailers-filmed-from-pavement
Original = Andrey Cherkashin http://vk.com/video2967252_169073239

June 23rd, Buk 3×2 at 0:15 until the end of video

http://bellingcat-vehicles.silk.co/page/0012-Stary-Oskol%3A-Buk-3×2-on-a-trailer
Original = Pavel Prolubnikov = http://vk.com/video60637013_168861884

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i2MNraWgubs&feature=youtu.be&t=1m6s
June  23rd, evening.
Buk 3×2 from the beginning of the video.

Alexeyevka area

http://bellingcat-vehicles.silk.co/page/0020-Alexeyevka%3A-Buk-convoy-turning-and-merging-1

Original = Evgen Krinichny, posted 24-06-2014
http://vk.com/video135321380_169811617
Buk 3×2 at 6:14-624
http://bellingcat-vehicles.silk.co/page/0021-Alexeyevka%3A-Buk-convoy-turning-and-merging-2

Published on Sept. 8th. at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1A5MpuNGH1k
Buk 3×2 at 6:22-6:42

http://bellingcat-vehicles.silk.co/page/0022-Aexeyevka%3A-Buk-convoy-south-and-out-of-town

Original = Alexander Kleshnev, posted 25-06-2014
https://vk.com/video91220754_168802710  Buk 3×2 at 0:52

Then there’s also a large format photo of the BUK, which was posted on VKontakte on June 24th, also from Alexeyevka area:
https://pp.vk.me/c618131/v618131910/998d/NtAx_E_cFSo.jpg
It was part of this post: https://vk.com/wall-62387983_26806

After this there are no more traces of Buk 3×2.

 

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54 Comments on Bellingcat uses assumptions to make claims instead of irrefutable proof!

  1. Buk 3×2 never could have entered Ukraine from the south of Snizhne, as that area was under control of the Ukrainian army (around Marynivka). As the following images illustrate, the area was under control of the Ukrainian army at least between 15 July 2014 and 22 July 2014:
    http://euromaidanpress.com/2014/07/16/ato-map-how-the-situation-in-eastern-ukraine-changed-over-two-months
    http://www.rnbo.gov.ua/files/2014/RNBO_map_22_07_eng.jpg
    Apart from that images and videos show the Buk indeed was transported from Donetsk via Zuhres and Torez to Snizhne on 17 July 2014.
    So our “strange way of logical thinking” is supported by facts.

    • Daniel:

      Welcome.

      “south of Snizhne, as that area was under control of the Ukrainian army (around Marynivka). As the following images illustrate, the area was under control of the Ukrainian army at least between 15 July 2014 and 22 July 2014:”

      Those maps are entirely worthless and without value. They show the main rear logistics base of the military adventure in Sector D as controlled by separatists, even as Ukraine was complaining it was being shelled by Russia!

      At this site, we commonly locate features on Google Earth imagery we can all easily verify and use careful statements by the respective military commands of the two sides to verify control of locations.

      There are certainly much better substantiated ways to make your point that citing the RNBO maps, which are entirely without value.

      “Apart from that images and videos show the Buk indeed was transported from Donetsk via Zuhres and Torez to Snizhne on 17 July 2014.”

      As has been endlessly dissected here, these photos and videos are without any provenance or author and lack essential methods of verification like timestamps or original RAW files. There are little better than hearsay.

      Additionally, photos and videos of a BUK going from Donetsk to Snizhne, if all accurate, do not prove or demonstrate any sort of movement from Russia to Donetsk or from Snizhne to Russia.

      • There is enough evidence that the area around Marynivka was under control of the Ukrainian army around 17 July 2014. Just search for news articles, uploaded YouTube movies, photographs and it will become clear to you that the separatists never could have a transported a Buk missile launcher through this area.

        • Daniel:

          “There is enough evidence that the area around Marynivka was under control of the Ukrainian army around 17 July 2014.”

          The only area under Ukrainian control was the strip directly at the border crossing itself, including the military pontoon bridge over the Mius River, and a height south of Marynivka. To the west, Ukrainian control extended from Hryhorivka up the flank of Saur Mogila to the west of Manulivka. To the east, Ukrainian control consisted of a thin strip along the border until past Dibrivka.

          This prevented immediate movement of a theoretical BUK directly to the border. Perhaps that is your point?

    • You are aware that “euromaidanPR” and “facts” are non-overlapping entities?

  2. The comment of the user with nickname Rob is not correct. It’s easy to verify with Google street view that the convoy could have come from the north via ‘Ulitsa Chapaeva’: http://www.google.com/maps/place/%D0%9E%D0%9E%D0%9E+%22%D0%A0%D1%83%D1%84%D0%BC%D0%B0%D1%81%D1%82%D0%B5%D1%80%22,+%D0%9A%D1%80%D0%BE%D0%B2%D0%B5%D0%BB%D1%8C%D0%BD%D1%8B%D0%B5+%D0%BC%D0%B0%D1%82%D0%B5%D1%80%D0%B8%D0%B0%D0%BB%D1%8B/@50.6258594,38.6459893,16z/data=!3m1!4b1
    That is also exactly what the 2nd video about the movements of the convoy show: most of the vehicles come from the north, some of them from the south, they merge into one convoy and drive north again. Why exactly they drive north instead of south from the intersection is not clear, as it is not the shortest way to road P185.
    Not long ago we discovered another video of a part of the convoy, filmed in the north of Alexeyevka, that confirms a part of the convoy indeed entered Alexeyevka from the north direction. We have published this video in the overview you link to in the beginning of this article. Here is the direct link to that video:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LEHGNOEgod8

  3. So you claim that Bellingcat claims that Buk 3×2 was seen in Millerovo. Let’s have a closer look to all three claims:
    1) “One of a series of videos that shows a convoy containing the Buk linked to the downing of MH17 was reportedly filmed near the town of Millerovo.”
    It is written here that the video shows a *convoy* that contains Buk 3×2, was filmed near Millerovo, not that Buk 3×2 itself was filmed there.
    2) “There are four possible drivers that could have transported Buk 3×2 to Millerovo in the 23-25 June convoy…”
    Here is written that those four drives *could* have transported Buk 3×2 to Millerovo, not that they transported that Buk to Millerovo.
    3) “Buk 3×2 was identified as being part of a military convoy that travelled from Kursk to Millerovo, Russia, between June 23 and June 25.”
    And again here is written that Buk 3×2 was a *part of a convoy* that travelled from Kursk to Millerovo, not that Buk 3×2 travelled to Millerovo.

    So as you can see, Bellingcat nowhere absolutely claims that Buk 3×2 was filmed, seen or transported to Millerovo. Bellingcat indeed suggests it was transported to Millerovo, because Buk 3×2 was part of a complete Buk system (it replaced Buk 222 in the convoy), it would not make much sense when one of the units would separate from the convoy after more then 350 kilometers (certainly not to go back to Kursk after such a distance), and a military base to the west of Millerovo had a big increase of military equipment during the summer of 2014. And last but not least: since Buk 3×2 is very likely the same Buk as visible in a 17 July 2014 photograph in Donetsk, Ukraine, the Buk linked to the downing of MH17, it very likely did not return back to Kursk after Alexeyevka.

    • Daniel:

      “It is written here that the video shows a *convoy* that contains Buk 3×2, was filmed near Millerovo, not that Buk 3×2 itself was filmed there.”

      The convoy cannot be said to be demonstrated to contain a particular vehicle unless (1) the vehicles is filmed or photographed in the convoy or (2) a reliable eyewitness can be found stating the same. BCat has neither.

      “Here is written that those four drives *could* have transported Buk 3×2 to Millerovo, not that they transported that Buk to Millerovo.”

      Yes, and pigs *could* fly if they were boarded onto an airplane or had a rocket motor strapped to their back. And I *could* have been a billionaire if I had won the Powerball lottery.

      “since Buk 3×2 is very likely the same Buk as visible in a 17 July 2014 photograph in Donetsk, Ukraine,”

      I think it is accurate to say most of us here do not accept the Paris Match collage as an actual unretouched photo. Some of us have also helped send people on the ground to investigate the supposed photo location and trucking company and this has simply produced even more extreme doubts about this “photo”.

      “the Buk linked to the downing of MH17”

      There is no link to a downing except people stating this as if it was a fact, when there is in fact no valid evidentiary basis for the statement at all. The BUK is not present in videos of the convoys it supposedly travelled in through Donbass, it allegedly travels in broad daylight from Russia to Donetsk and is seen by no one. It flies directly at the cockpit of the plane above the clouds and from the front and is somehow unnoticed by the pilots. All the damage to the plane has never been explained based on the suggested launch location from warhead shrapnel dispersion.

      There are certainly the gravest doubts about the entire story.

    • What makes you believe BUK 222 was replaced by BUK 3×2?

      • Since Buk 222 was the only missing missile launcher of the 2nd Battalion in that convoy and Buk 3×2 was the only missile launcher of the 3rd Battalion. However, the convoy is a complete Buk system, the majority of vehicles belonging to the 2nd Battalion. In our upcoming report we make it clear that the Buk unit vehicles were transported by the 2nd Battalion only.

        • The launcher may have been missing simply because it was not operational. When Ukraine evacuated the 3rd batallion of the 156th Regiment from Lugansk, they left BUK 322 behind supposedly for this reason.

          • Buk 222 was fully operational the year before, as it was used for exercises at Kapustin Yar. 3rd Battalion Buks however were not used anymore for a few years for those exercises. That of course does not fully explain why Buk 222 was replaced by Buk 3×2, but it is noteworthy.

    • Denis Cashcov // February 1, 2016 at 2:35 am // Reply

      Daniel, no driver could have driven it unless it was there to be driven

  4. Talking about assumptions, isn’t this part of your article quite a huge assumption?: “A part could including BUK 3×2 could have returned to their base. One of the reasons to leave the base and return was that Putin put the army on a high alert. The convoy could be a training mission to check how quickly it was able to hit the road.”

    Did you see videos/photographs of (parts of) the convoy driving back in the direction of Kursk after Alexeyevka? When as you claim a part of the convoy would have driven back after Alexeyevka, where it was filmed during day time, isn’t it strange no videos or photographs have appeared on the net of (parts of) the convoy driving in the opposite direction?

    Do you have any evidence that it is a standard emergency procedure that a military convoy leaves the military base, splits after several hundreds of kilometers, and partly returns to the base?

    Wouldn’t it be enough to drive just a few kilometers and then return back to the base as part of a a test how quickly a military convoy can hit the road? Does it really makes sense to drive 267 kilometers for that? (not 350 or actually 328, that is the distance from Alexeyevka to Millerovo)

    • There could have been a dull reason for a Buk returning to the base while the convoy was driving further on: a technical failure. Something could have got broken in Buk 3×2, as a result it returned to Kursk and thus there were no sign of that Buk in Millerovo.

      • They discover a technical failure of the Buk missile launcher after that it was transported on a truck for 267 kilometers? You mean, they tested it if still was functioning when they were in Alexeyevka? And how is it possible it gets a technical failure suddenly, while being transported? They could not discover the failure when they still were in Kursk? And does it look like Buk 3×2 was leaving the convoy in Alexeyevka? No, instead we see all the vehicles merging into one convoy again, instead of certain vehicles being separated.

  5. So your whole article is about Bellingcat making an assumption, but in the same article you make several assumptions yourself, like the one described above, but also:

    “Nobody knows the whereabouts of BUK 3×2 since it was last seen in Alexeyevka!”. This is not only an assumption, but clearly untrue, since of course many people know where Buk 3×2 went after Alexeyevka, including the crew of Buk 3×2, the driver who transported it, the commander of that Buk unit vehicle, the commander of the 2nd Battalion and the commander of the 53rd Brigade.

    “It would be more logical to cross the border south of Snizhne, shoot and go back the same route.” Already mentioned above as impossible, but also this is an assumption, only based on the fact it is ‘more logical’.

    “However there is no sign of BUK 3×2 in Millerovo!!” is in fact also an assumption. Maybe there is such a sign, only nobody found it (yet), we just do not know. The fact Buk 3×2 was not filmed in Millerovo, also does not necessarily mean that Buk was *not* there on 25 June 2014.

    • Daniel do not write such nonsense. When I state “However there is no sign of BUK 3×2 in Millerovo!!” it is a fact and not an assumption.
      IF there is a sign, there must be an indication/clue BUK 3×2 was there. There is nothing like that.
      You are reversing facts: I have to proof BUK 3×2 was not there, otherwise I am assuming.

      The fact Buk 3×2 was not filmed in Millerovo, also does not necessarily mean that Buk was *not* there on 25 June 2014.

      That is correct. Remember what I wrote: there is no sign of BUK 3×2 in Millerovo.

      • admin:

        “When I state “However there is no sign of BUK 3×2 in Millerovo!!” it is a fact and not an assumption”

        — It IS an assumption. What is a fact, for now, is that there is yet no KNOWN sign of the ‘Buk’ there.

        “4 Bellingcat claims that BUK 3×2 was seen in Millerovo”

        — BC never CLAIMED that. They did SUGGEST it very intensively, and if you think they were wrong you still can never claim they claimed it.

        The logic is very clear: first, the ‘Buk’ was seen as part of a convoy at Alekseyevka; then, the whole convoy moves closer to the Ukrainian border in Millerovo though this one of the vehicles is not seen in the evidence we know about as of now; and then again the ‘Buk’ is registered within Ukraine.

        It may be, of course, erroneous and this very ‘Buk’ in question might have been moved into Ukraine without entering Millerovo with the rest of the convoy. So, you may be right.

        • Hector Reban // February 1, 2016 at 9:01 am // Reply

          You people are really something. Daniel is allowed to claim the BUK hasn’t been returned to Kursk because there is no evidence for that but when admin invokes this argument, you come up with the statement there was no KNOWN sign.

          No evidence for its return found at this moment, you obviously mean. Or do you only use logic when its in your favour?

          • Prosto Tak // February 1, 2016 at 10:16 am //

            Right, there is no known sign of the ‘Buk’ returning to Kursk.

            However, there are known signs of the ‘Buk’ being within Ukraine at the time, so it would be very difficult for the same vehicle to be in two different places simultaneously.

            So, you are free to build a theory that the ‘Buk’ was quickly returned to Kursk and then, still more quickly, returned again to the Ukrainian border to be driven into Ukraine.

            However, Occam’s Razor tells us to chose a more simple answer first: that the ‘Buk’ was still part of the same convoy but this exact vehicle just happened not to be filmed or pictured by anyone while in Millerovka.

          • Prosto: While I appreciate all opinions on this website, yours is approaching a propaganda style.
            Lets get to the facts: we see a lot of videos and photos of a BUK TELAR in Eastern Ukraine. From not a single photo/video we know who made the image and at what time. We lack EXIF information.

            Also, we do not know the serial number of the BUK. It is your full right to believe that BUK in Eastern Ukraine is 3×2.
            My opinion is that we first need some better proof for that.
            It is more or less wishfull thinking this BUK is indeed 3×2.

          • Hector, I use the same logic as Marcel used to show that there is no sign that Buk 3×2 returned to Kursk, but you are right I should have added *known* to that. However, as I wrote below, there IS a sign Buk 3×2 was in Millerovo: vehicles of the same convoy that are visible in the Millerovo video. Indeed another even more clear sign is that the same Buk very likely was in Ukraine on 17 July 2014. For its presence in Millerovo there are two *known* signs, for its return to Kursk there is no *known* sign. The 17 July 2014 photograph even might be real evidence, if it can be established if the photograph is authentic. So I do not agree with Marcel that this is “wishful thinking”, there is a clear sign. Since this photograph (in fact two photographs) is part of a criminal investigation it is logical that the name of the photographer and EXIF data can not be published.

          • Daniel: the reasoning of Bellingcat just does not make any sense and clearly shows the BC agenda. It is like the police saying:
            You have a criminal record. You were seen near a crime scene. Unless you prove otherwise you are now a suspect.

            Something was at a certain place if there is proof for it. There is no indication of BUK 3×2 being at Millerovo.
            It is not to me to prove BUK 3×2 was somewhere else. Bellingcat must prove their statement by evidence.

            This whole BC narrative just looks like the serie “making a murderer’.

            The Paris Match photos have many questionable properties. For example it is a fact that it is not publically known at what time the photos were made.
            Also there are no eyewitness who saw the BUK parked. That is strange as it was parked at a busy road.

            This report is another major debunk of the BC narrative
            http://www.whathappenedtoflightmh17.com/what-you-see-is-all-there-is/

            Also there are no satellite photos of the BUK. That is weird as for sure the United States were closely monitoring the area. As capabilities of photo satellites are widely known, an excuse of secrecy not to publish does not make sense at all.

          • Hector Reban // February 1, 2016 at 6:23 pm //

            Right, Daniel, I see your logic now. Its not about facts, its about “signs” now.

            Its like the old Babylonian sign telling, deriving facts from fiction. Prosto even thinks its parsimoniously right to do so, invoking the old Razor, haha

          • Prosto Tak // February 2, 2016 at 1:25 am //

            admin,

            “It is like the police saying:
            You have a criminal record. You were seen near a crime scene. Unless you prove otherwise you are now a suspect”

            — The presumption of innocence is a notion of the criminal law. The police shall not do that.

            However, this site makes a citizens’ investigation that is not regulated by the principles of the criminal procedure.

            In fact, there are so many unsubstantiated accusations against Ukraine here of the same kind: “Ukraine did not give any evidence which I would consider sufficient against the accusations I raised so Ukraine must for sure be guilty,” and it’s “normal” here.

            But as soon as someone tries to question the innocence of Russia you say it’s an “agenda.”

      • It is not a fact. There actually IS a sign that Buk 3×2 was in Millerovo: other military vehicles of the same convoy that were filmed in Millerovo. That is a sign. It indeed is no evidence, but for sure a sign/clue/indication.

        • Hector Reban // February 1, 2016 at 6:24 pm // Reply

          Your “signs” just have the status of non-fact.

        • Liane Theuer // February 1, 2016 at 7:24 pm // Reply

          „Since this photograph (in fact two photographs) is part of a criminal investigation it is logical that the name of the photographer and EXIF data can not be published.“

          Daniel, how do you come to the allegation that the photos are part of the criminal investigation ?
          Do you definitly know it, or are there „signs“ ?

          Since these two photos are the only „evidence“ of Buk 3×2 being in Ukraine, I wonder why BC changed the story about this photos several times.

        • There are also signs that you might be one of those who are being paid to propell the Russia-did-it viewpoint.

          Anyone noticed that Atlantic Council bought the ‘Mh17’ Google ad-word at some point? I noticed that a couple of months ago, verified thoroughly (the link lead to the web page AtlanticCouncil/Ukraine) and shot an email about that to my friends. It is pathetic that someone buys ad-keywords about a tragedy for their own political goals. That ad-word seem to have been abandoned by now. But given the fact, I would not be surprised if Atlantic Council, directly or indirectly, still pays active proponents of the above PoV,

          • Hector Reban // February 2, 2016 at 7:12 am //

            This is a “sign” the Bellingcat/Atalntic Council/NATO information dissemination is part of a well organized PR/psyops operation (“public diplomacy” in defense pundit words)

  6. Daniel:

    “The fact Buk 3×2 was not filmed in Millerovo, also does not necessarily mean that Buk was *not* there on 25 June 2014.”

    I was not filmed on Saur Mogila on July 17, 2014. Nobody has found any such picture yet. But isn’t it possible I might have been there acting as the rebel artillery spotter? It would have been truly awesome and epic if I was there, as I would eventually tell everyone the truth about MH17 and use real pictures to prove it. Other foreigners were present there around that time. So maybe I was too. We just do not know, do we? 😉

    You seem to be missing the point. Its not up to skeptics to prove a negative. It is up to the person asserting a theory to advance positive evidence of their theory aside from personal conjecture and wishful thinking. The theory stands or falls based on actual evidence. If you want to assert BUK 3×2 travels from Kursk to the border to Donetsk to Snizhne, to Lugansk to the border, to Kursk, than real, verifiable, and demonstrable evidence of the same must be produced for every step of the journey. If you can’t, then the theory is really just an ellipsis … connected by gossamer strands of fantasy.

    • Andrew:

      “Its not up to skeptics to prove a negative. It is up to the person asserting a theory to advance positive evidence of their theory aside from personal conjecture and wishful thinking”

      — So, I am that skeptic that questions your theory. And, according to you, it is up to you now to give evidence for your theory aside from personal conjecture and wishful thinking.

  7. Maksym Ponomarenko // January 30, 2016 at 9:47 pm // Reply

    The buk was probably in New Zealand too. Sure, we have no evidence but why let that stop us?

  8. Gabriele Wolff // January 31, 2016 at 1:07 am // Reply

    “Daniel // January 30, 2016 at 3:00 pm // Reply

    Since Buk 222 was the only missing missile launcher of the 2nd Battalion in that convoy and Buk 3×2 was the only missile launcher of the 3rd Battalion. However, the convoy is a complete Buk system, the majority of vehicles belonging to the 2nd Battalion. In our upcoming report we make it clear that the Buk unit vehicles were transported by the 2nd Battalion only.”

    Hi, Daniel Romein from Bellingcat,

    I’m pretty aware of your problems: after you stated that the 3_2 Buk from Kursk, last seen in Alexejevka surrounded by a convoy with Buks with the first number “2” from the second bataillon of the 53 Kursk brigade, was identical with the Buk on the blurred and most probably faked Paris Match foto presumably taken in Donetsk, you had to shiver over to the second bataillon.

    That’s the reason why you now claim that the 3_2 Buk was replacing a “missing” 222 Buk.

    How many other Buks from the second bataillon are “missing”?

    Shouldn’t you prove how far away from Kursk Alexejevka is situated?

    Do you know how Bellingcat author Kivimäki answered to the Bellingcat commentator Rob?

    “Rob – September 30th, 2014

    Thank you Veli-Pekka and team at Bellingcat, for this awesome work in tracking down the MH-17 BUK system. I’m a great admirer of your work, and hope that by crowd sourcing we can shed some light on this disaster.
    One question I have :
    You made a pretty compelling case that the convoy (most notably with the important BUKs) went through Gorodishche [Coordinates: 51.137286, 38.064599].
    But in doing so, it will approach Alexeyevka from the North, and it would be almost impossible for the convoy to go through the Magnit store intersection in Alexeyevka, which you would only get through if you were to approach Alexeyevka from the south…
    Is this convoy doing some sort of “parading” ?”
    https://www.bellingcat.com/resources/case-studies/2014/09/29/geolocating-the-mh17-buk-convoy-in-russia/comment-page-1/#comment-1496

    “Rob – September 30th, 2014

    I’m sorry. I should have been more clear :
    In the Magnit store Alexeyevka intersection video, both BUK 232 and suspect BUK 3’2 come from the right (the south) which suggests they took highway P185 to Alexeyevka. But if they did, they should not have come through Gorodishche. Isn’t that odd ?”
    https://www.bellingcat.com/resources/case-studies/2014/09/29/geolocating-the-mh17-buk-convoy-in-russia/comment-page-1/#comment-1498

    “Veli-Pekka Kivimäki – September 30th, 2014

    The Alexeyevka scene is quite interesting, don’t have a solid explanation what happened. Seems the convoy had either split up and was regrouping, or some kind of reordering was going on. It’s also the last known video currently of this convoy together.”
    https://www.bellingcat.com/resources/case-studies/2014/09/29/geolocating-the-mh17-buk-convoy-in-russia/comment-page-1/#comment-1520

    “Rob – October 1st, 2014

    A re-ordering makes sense ; Russian military may often do that to avoid satellite tracking of individual vehicles.
    The Alexeyevka intersection video is still very interesting though.
    It seems that most vehicles (including TELAR 232 and suspect TELAR 3’2) are moving towards the train station (along with TELAR 221, 231, loader 323), while loader 223, TELAR 211 and 212 are moving back into the direction that the convoy came from…”
    https://www.bellingcat.com/resources/case-studies/2014/09/29/geolocating-the-mh17-buk-convoy-in-russia/comment-page-1/#comment-1533

    The only identical Buk in the Millerovo video in comparison with the Alexejewvka video is the command Buk 200. How do you come to the conclusion that it’s the same convoy?

    The Millerovo convoy according to Bellingcat stopped on Artillery Street south east of Millerovo just at the corner where Artillery Street turns right (to the northern direction back home).

    https://www.bellingcat.com/resources/case-studies/2014/11/08/geolocating-the-russian-buk-convoy-in-millerovo/

    Why do you think that this video shows a convoy heading into Ukraine?

    And why was this Millerovo video deliberately hidden in the great report from November, 8, 2014? And in different ways, if one compares the English and the German version of this report?
    You find all details in my blog:
    https://gabrielewolff.wordpress.com/2015/05/24/ukraine-informationskrieg-um-mh-17-4/

    And where did the suspicious Buk hide between June 25 and July 17 when it was finally “detected” in Donetsk/Ukraine?

    I really don’t know how anybody can live within a closed ideological frame of perseption.

    Of course Bellingcat tries to get a distance to obvious crazy portals like InformNapalm and others. But naturally Bellingcat has the same function as these propagandistic websites which are now fighting against Bellingcat.

  9. admin, can you make the ‘recent comments’ list longer, please?

  10. Hello admin.

    It in interesting to see still facts being collected but also hard to watch this discussion here…and also reading notorious pro-Russia defenders like Gabrielle Wolff with her lengthy and confused texts, Hector Reban and other well known one-sided people. You hack on Daniel who I find gave honest answers. Reading this dialogue I felt I also have to write some feedback regarding you.

    You are generally right to question the BC theory – but I get an awkward feeling when people (here you) accuse others of making assumptions while making counter-accusations. This might make BC look more dubious and be your intention, but doesn’t prove anything either! Letting your legitimate questions looking more like an attack also looks like you and some common posters rather follow their own agenda. Against the rules of probability you ignore and refute the rightful assumption that “seeing certain vehicles together in a convoy” leads to a high plausibility they might still “be together a few kilometers later”. Of course it is not a proof, but watching the video in Millerovo you can also note the car driver does not overtake all vehicles.

    What does lead you then to your assumption that BUK3*2 was probably not seen there? A small test, about what seems to be more plausible:
    – The BUK3*2 would be still seen because the video shows just the rearmost part of the whole convoy, so we do not see everything that might have been there!
    – The BUK3*2 was probably not in Millerovo because it cannot be seen on the video which shows just a part of the convoy!

    Of course we do not have any proof for any of these 2 possibilities, but your argumentation becomes dishonest when you ignore the high probability that BC is correct. I don’t say BC proofed it! Most theories have gaps because we simply don’t or cannot know all facts and we follow our logic and probability. BC does so and following my judgment they are carefully enough and do not make illogic assumptions here. Of course they might have an agenda, but they also corrected themselves properly.

    Going a step back and looking at the whole conflict it is hard to ignore that mainly Russia told a lot of lies to justify their geopolitical adventure and that’s a fact – but do they also lie here? Quite possible, but yes indeed, we do not have a 100% confirmation yet for this as you state! So lets continue to search for the truth (I also believe the MH17 case turned more into a political gamble and neither the US, Ukraine, EU and especially Russia do not play with open cards). But attacking BC with simple counter-assumptions lacking any hints or accusing this other fellow here (Prosto Talk) of propaganda and siding with other pro-russian conspiracy-celebrities is certainly not the right way to reach an objective truth.

    Looking forward to read more interesting facts about the MH17 case here (I especially liked the satellite article). But the following discussions are often hard to read and add a bad taste to this blog.

    • Hector Reban // February 10, 2016 at 8:11 am // Reply

      Reiterating the BCat story by pretending you are critical of them and smearing people with false accusations by deoicting yourself as being very unbiased doesn’t work this time, Rob.

      Most importantly, there is wrong a lot more than “the same convoy” a “few” meters away and – like you Bcat people always do – inventing “signs” to establish a truth that doesn’t exist.

      Your plan to discipline admin because you are clearly afraid this website is going into the wrong direction from your perspective and putting up a martyrdom for a clear propagandist and fact denier Prosto Tak, is not working.

    • Rob: give a break. Counter assumptions. The word alone is absurd.
      A journalist, either a professional one, or citizen journalist like Bellingcat is named, should be carefull what he/she writes.
      Stating at least four times that BUK 3×2 was in Millerova while there is no evidence at all is just bad journalism. It clearly shows the tunnelvision or rather agenda of Bellingcat.

      Bellingcat wants to frame Russia. Period.

      I want to find the truth.

      Completely different.

    • Rob:

      [It in interesting to see still facts being collected but also hard to watch this discussion here..]

      If only people were collecting facts to discover reality that would be rather autistic and there would be little scientific progression. No one is only trying to collect facts.

      In reality and in the pre-scientific stage, we usually first develop ideas about the world on the basis of intuition. That is most people ‘follow their own agenda’. That’s legitimate and intuition is the real basis of science. But then the stage of testing comes to find evidence.

      The discussion here is about falsifying a theory or pointing out it has not been confirmed. Normally it is valued other blogs are willing to take notice of our putative new insights. And this blog is not just a blog.

      On this blog there’s big emphasis on facts but there is also room for theory development, provided one knows to separate them. And that’s where we are talking about. We are very sharp correcting each other’s theories. That is common practice.

      [and also reading notorious pro-Russia defenders like Gabrielle Wolff with her lengthy and confused texts, Hector Reban and other well known one-sided people]

      Nobody has to be two-sided or completely neutral to find the truth. Normally people’s intuition is one-sided and we need others for a two-sided check. A blog is at best if there are thinkers of both sides to correct each other. So, balance is not always found within, but across individuals. Therefore, we are pleased with people with strong opinions.

      [You are generally right to question the BC theory – but I get an awkward feeling when people (here you) accuse others of making assumptions while making counter-accusations. This might make BC look more dubious and be your intention, but doesn’t prove anything either!]

      Falsifying a theory does not mean one has to prove the contrary. ‘Counter-assumptions’ are legitimate to stipulate fallacies. Only if ‘counter-assumptions’ would be used to prove the contrary theory it would be risky. But that is not the case.

      [But attacking BC with simple counter-assumptions lacking any hints or accusing this other fellow here (Prosto Talk) of propaganda and siding with other pro-russian conspiracy-celebrities is certainly not the right way to reach an objective truth.]

      ‘The right way to reach an objective truth’ is to be able to withstand sharp critique without a flood of insinuations 🙂

    • Liane Theuer // February 10, 2016 at 1:21 pm // Reply

      RobRoy, you speak about “well known one-sided people“ here and „pro-russian conspiracy-celebrities“, on the other side you admit that BC „might have an agenda“…
      You claim the “rules of probability“ and „rightful assumptions“ that are „more plausible“.
      BC „do not make illogic assumptions“ and „follow our logic and probability“.
      Okay.

      In my view the way of the alleged BUK3*2 back to Russia via the M04 Debaltsevo – Luhansk and then via M21 to Sjeverne – Krasnodon is an illogic assumption !
      The M04 Debaltsevo – Luhansk on July 17 was partly under control of ukrainian military (did BC ever mentioned that fact ?).
      To take such a dangerous way is not plausible but completely illogic and does not follow logic and probability.
      The assumption that the driver of the low-loader has lost his way, is also not plausible.

      As BC and the SBU claim BUK3*2 was in Luhansk at dawn.
      Why BC has not purchased satellite imagery of 18 July, covering this route ?
      Why no other try to locate BUK3*2 on other locations ?

      Your attempted proof of BUK3*2 en route to Zuhres failed.
      BC found two plausible reasons for this :
      1) „there are not insignificant sections of road that are obscured by either cloud cover or the tree line “

      But there are neither clouds nor significant tree lines in the Digital Globe imagery and BC failed to show the rest of road to Zuhres.

      2) „the assumption that the Buk would be visible was based upon a number of unknown factors that may have affected the low-loader’s travel time, including the speed of the low-loader, the heaviness of the traffic, and whether any stops were made.“

      Huh ? The ParisMatch photo was taken at “about 11 a.m. on the morning of July 17”.
      The Digital Globe imagery was taken at 11:08 a.m.
      The low-loader must have be seen on the satellite image, because he could not have completed the shown route in 8 minutes. And there are neither clouds nor tree lines that would cover the low-loader and the black SUV in front of it at the same time.

      BC has never corrected this report, it is still there like that. Although each probability speaks against the low-loader not be seen.
      But :
      „Of course they might have an agenda, but they also corrected themselves properly.“

    • Liane Theuer // February 10, 2016 at 1:26 pm // Reply

      Following the “rules of probability“ this Twitter between Eliot Higgins and Michael Kobs, also is not plausible :

      Kobs : How did you find “BUK in Snizhne” video ? Someone sent a link ? Channel was in the Top30 but existed just 30min.
      Higgins : I don´t even remember now, I downloaded it right away.
      Kobs : But how did you find it ?
      Higgins : Probably Twitter, but I can´t remember the exact source…
      Kobs : …no public twitter message at least. Would you check your PMs for me ?
      Higgins : I deleted my Pms on regulary basis, in case of hacking.
      Kobs : Save it on your “sources” stick in future. Nobody hacks Stick in iron locked drawer.
      https://twitter.com/MichaKobs/status/607133817414021120

      How likely is it that Eliot Higgins clears important information instead of back up ?

    • This site, as are several others, is completely devoted to shift the blame on Ukraine, to frame Kyiv and to clear Russia by all price, against all odds. You can clearly understand that from the position of its administration that attracts similarly professing “whiteners of Russia” and “denigrators of Ukraine.”

      Rest of comment deleted by Admin
      Prosto Tak has a clear agenda. Defend the interest of Ukraine at websites. If someone calls this website ‘devoted to shift blame on Ukraine’ the person stating that is clearing doing propaganda.
      There are many examples on this site blaiming Russia for not telling the truth.

      Prosto Tak will not be able to place any comment on this site from now on. Anyone else with a clear agenda will be banned as well. Many people have been banned from commenting before.

      • Liane Theuer // February 15, 2016 at 2:10 pm // Reply

        Is this the right decision, Marcel ?
        Of course, Prosto Tak has a clear agenda. But he also has a lot of knowledge about Ukraine.
        Perhaps it would be better to delete only the posts that are clearly defamatory.
        On the other hand I do not want to interfere in your decisions.

        • anyone clearly spreading propaganda and telling clear lies is banned from this site.
          I devoted 1000+ hours of my time to make sure a balanced research is done on what happened to mh17.
          Someone stating this site is Pro Russia does not know what he is talking about.
          I am pro truth.

  11. „On February 24 at 10am GMT, we will release our 100+ page report on Russia’s 53rd Anti-Aircraft Missile Brigade, which we believe is responsible for providing the Buk-M1 system that downed MH17.“
    https://www.facebook.com/ruslanleviev/posts/10156553506180424?pnref=story

    Marcel, I also hope that we find out the truth.
    The chances of Whistleblower are rising according to the latest developments in Ukraine.

    • One thing that is really surprising is that according any western media Russia is the most corrupt country. Transfer of BUK is harder than smuggling drugs. But somehow they still didn’t manage to buy general or a rookie to provide any tangible evidence to confirm Bellingcat fairytale. Just a hint of where the perpetrator BUK should be looked for is enough. Either all Russians are unquestionably devoted to Putin it he managed to eradicate all corruption. Both are false. So something else is at play.

  12. Bellingcat uses assumptions to make claims instead of irrefutable proof!
    – Yet somehow suspect profiles in social media was promptly blocked by social network (VK is controlled by Russian government), not even by suspects themselves!!!

    • > suspect profiles in social media was promptly blocked by social network
      Can you give examples, please?

      > VK is controlled by Russian government
      If the Russian government controls VK, why do you think that did not make it look like the account was deleted by the user themselves?

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