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Category Archives: MH17

Why did flight MH17 fly over Ukraine?

Russian fighterNew information emerged in the Netherlands about flight MH17 that was downed over eastern Ukraine killing 298 people on July 17, 2014. Malaysia Airlines operated the flight, but it did so in code share with KLM Royal Dutch Airlines. As a result, the flight had 2 flight numbers: MH17 and KL4103. Many passengers had purchased their tickets at KLM. That the plane flew over Ukraine was remarkable for several reasons:
  1. On April 3, 2014 the US Federal Aviation Administration (
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Dutch Safety Board avoids the word missile

MH17 brokstuk"Flight MH17 broke up in the air probably as a result of structural damage caused by a large number of high-energy objects that penetrated the aircraft from outside." This is the extremely cautious conclusion of the preliminary report the Dutch Safety Board published on September 9, 2014. The board's duty is not to investigate who killed the 298 people on board, but to investigate the cause of the crash. Although the report avoids using the word missile it is obvious that the "high-energy objects that penetrated the aircraft from outside"...
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Damage control

Malaysian Airlines operated the downed flight MH17 in codeshare with KLM Royal Dutch Airlines (flight KL4103). Therefore, KLM is liable for damage of survivors of victims who traveled on KLM tickets. This explains why a KLM executive, Mr. Camiel Eurlings, misled the public by telling a Dutch newspaper that flight MH17's route was declared safe. It was just an attempt to limit KLM's liability. However, it seems very unlikely that he would be able to mislead the court. Judges will consider that KLM claims it is "continuously monitoring the safety situation on all routes real time"....
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Russia is traveling back in time

For the first time since World War II a passenger plane has been downed in Europe by a Russian missile. And for the first time since World War II Russia has changed borders in Europe by using military force when it invaded and subsequently annexed the Crimea. Already before the Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 is downed in eastern Ukraine, the Associated Press reports on the presence of a missile launcher in the town of Snizhne in eastern Ukraine on July 17, 2014. A reporter sees 7 Russian tanks parked at a gas station outside the town and a Buk missile system, which...
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