Some media like The Guardian and Australian 60 minutes are sure that the alleged launch location south of Snizhne was in fact the location a BUK missile was launched from.
For me this indicates the absolute bias of some of the main stream media. The Joint Investigation Team did not announce anything about the exact launch location. This announcement is expected after summer. Also DSB did not specify the exact launch location other than “the missile was launch from a 320 sq km area”.
This blogpost provides videos and photos of the alleged launch location.
So let me summarize what we know and do not know about this alleged launch location.
- On Google Earth photos made at July 16 2014 there are no burn marks to be seen
- On Google Earth photos made at July 21 2014 there is an area of about 50 square meters showing traces of burn
- There is no Google Earth or any other (satellite) photo available which shows the state of the field between July 16 and July 22 2014
- Two reporters, Chris Miller and Roland Oliphant, visited the exact location at July 22. They made a few photos of an area which shows burn marks. See my post here.
- A farmer interviewed by Miller and Oliphant stated that he could not recall whether he noticed the burn mark on July 17 or July 18 2014
- the reporters found discarded plastic parts that indicate the presence of a weapons container produced by a Ukrainian Stelko Plastik, a plastics manufacturer that produce weapon containers. (source)
- JIT took soil samples of this field. It is confirmed they took samples of an area 300 meters East of the 50 sq. meters area showing burn marks.
- an image released by US Ambassy in Kiev suggest a launch location very close to the alleged one
- Kiev Research Institute for Forensic Expertise calculated the area where the missile was launched from and the alleged field is exactly in this area. See DSB report.
- It is not known why JIT took samples of an area which do not show burn marks.
- Experts consulted by Dutch news RTL Nieuws concluded a small area was burned. A triangular shaped part of the field was ploughed. (source)
- Farmers stated they ploughed that triangular shaped area of the field to prevent a fire to spread out.
- Not a single expert could confirm the burn marks were made by a BUK missile.
- As far as I know there is no indication that a BUK missile launch causes a field to be set on fire. I have not seen any photo nor video indicating this.
- Basically the above means a BUK missile could be launched from any location. It does not make sense to exclude locations without burn marks, assuming these burn marks are large enough to be detected on for instance Google Earth.
- The cause of the burn could be anything: set on fire by farmers, set on fire by a rocket, flares, a BUK .
- Two photos made by a citizen of Torez show black and white smoke in the area of the alleged launch location
- It is not confirmed the black and white smoke are related to the same event
- The black some could orginate from a diesel locomotive or chimney (see more here)