To understand MH17 we need to have a view of the complete puzzle. In my opinion MH17 was not an accident. It was an accident waiting to happen because Ukraine failed to close the airspace over Eastern Ukraine.
Which party shot MH17 down? Will we ever know? We can only guess.
This post shows the United States forced the EU to take sanctions against Russia. This post also shows that German Chancellor Merkel confirmes EU sanction were related to MH17.
It is a fact the United States is not happy with President Putin. Putin annexed Crimea. Putin is spending a lot of money on defense. And Putin supports Assad in Syria. Last but not least: in spring 2014 Putin also supported the separatists in Eastern Ukraine.
Ukraine is important for the US for geo-political reasons. If Ukraine is under Western influence, Putin has lost control over its back yard. One of the reasons for Putin to annex Crimea.
This article at Euobserver and published at July 15 has some interesting news.
- The US and Ukraine are pushing EU leaders to impose economic sanctions on Russia at Wednesday’s (16 July) summit.
- With several EU states – including France, Germany, Italy, and Spain – opposed to tougher action on Russia during last week’s sanctions talks in Brussels, Washington and Kiev seem unlikely to get their way.
- US sources told the news agency that White House security advisors Antony Blinken and Caroline Atkinson urged the EU diplomats to impose an arms embargo, including a block on France’s plans to deliver two warships to Russia, and to stop some Russian firms’ access to international debt markets.
At the EU Council meeting at July 16 it was decided:
On Ukraine, EU leaders stressed their support for a peaceful settlement of the crisis and regret that Russia and the separatists did not take the requested steps set out in the 27 June European Council conclusions. They agreed on targeting Russia with a new set of 6 restrictive measures:
- a new list of entities and persons, including from the Russian Federation that are materially or financially supporting actions against Ukraine will be established by the Council by the end of July. Possible measures against individuals or entities who actively provide material or financial support to the Russian decision-makers responsible for the annexation of Crimea or the destabilisation of Eastern-Ukraine will also be studied
- the signature of new financing operations in the Russian Federation by the EIB will be suspended
- member states will coordinate with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development to adopt a similar position
- the Commission will reassess and potentially suspend the implementation of EU bilateral and regional cooperation programmes with Russia
The next day MH17 is shot down.
At July 22 the EU Council takes action on the downing of flight MH17
The Council asked for an acceleration of the preparation of the measures agreed at the special meeting of the European Council on 16 July. A list of entities and persons falling under the enhanced criteria adopted by the Council on 18 July should be established immediately.
On further significant targeted measures, the Council asked the Commission and the EEAS to finalise their preparatory work and on 24 July to present proposals for taking action, including on access to capital markets, defence, dual-use goods, and sensitive technologies, including in the energy sector.
End of July 2014 EU and the VS announced new sanctions.
A full timeline of all EU sanctions against Russia is here.
At September 12 EU made the new sanctions against Russia effective.
Vice President Biden confirms pressure by United States
Joe Biden, vice president of the US, did an interesting statement during a speech at October 2, 2014. He confirmed what Euobserver had written at July 15, namely that the United States put a lot of pressure on EU to have sanctions against Russia.
Biden did this speech at Harvard University, Kennedy School of Government. The complete text of Biden his speech can be read at the Whitehouse website.
Western media remain silent about speech
Remarkably hardly any Western main stream news covered this speech. I contacted the Dutch NRC newspaper correspondent Guus Valk in New York and ask “why did the newspaper did not cover this”. The response was: “this is already known news . Well, I disagree. Hardly anyone knew this.
Only a few Belgium newspapers covered the speech. Like De Morgen here . De Standard has the news covered here. Russian Ria Novosti covered here.
“We’ve given Putin a simple choice, respect Ukraine’s sovereignty or face increasing consequences. That has allowed us to rally the world’s major developed countries to impose real cost on Russia. It is true, they did not want to do that, but again it was America’s leadership and the President of the United States insisting, oft times almost having to embarrass Europe to stand up, and take economic hits to impose cost. And the results have been massive capital flight from Russia, a virtual freeze on foreign direct investment, a ruble at an all-time low against the dollar, and the Russian economy teetering on the brink of recession.”
A small part of the speech can be seen here. The full length of the speech of Biden can be seen here. He starts talking about Ukraine at minute 32:00
Federica Mogherini , the current High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, responded to the Biden saying. Ms. Mogherini, said she was “slightly surprised” by U.S. Vice President Joe Biden ’s comments this week that Washington had pushed the EU into imposing sanctions on Russia.
Well, so far the NRC newspaper excuse not to publish because it was known news.
“There has been a global effort which has been coordinated internationally,” she said. “The decisions taken in the European Council have never been easy but they have always been independent…and based on…European discussions.” according Wall Street Journal.
Angela Merkel confirms sanctions were related to MH17 shot down.
While many EU governments deny that the sanctions of EU were related to the shot down of MH17, Angela Merkel states in an interview with German TV ZDF Bettina Schausten that sanctions were also in place because of the shotdown. The interview took place during the G7 summit in Germany.
The original webpage published at June 7, 2015 has been deleted for unknown reasons. Webarchive is still able to show it. However the interview itself is still online. You can watch it see. At around 4:50 in the programm Merkel clearly talkes about MH17.