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by
Bridget Johnson

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July 17, 2014 - 9:00 am

Malaysia Airlines confirmed that it has lost another Boeing 777: Flight MH17 from Kuala Lumpur to Amsterdam, over a restive region near Donetsk, Ukraine.

There were 280 passengers on board and 15 crew members.

The incident comes a day after President Obama announced new sanctions on Russia. “Along with our allies, with whom I’ve been coordinating closely the last several days and weeks, I’ve repeatedly made it clear that Russia must halt the flow of weapons and fighters across the border into Ukraine; that Russia must urge separatists to release their hostages and support a cease-fire; that Russia needs to pursue internationally-mediated talks and agree to meaningful monitors on the border,” Obama said Wednesday evening.

“On top of the sanctions we have already imposed, we are therefore designating selected sectors of the Russian economy as eligible for sanctions,” he said. “We are freezing the assets of several Russian defense companies.  And we are blocking new financing of some of Russia’s most important banks and energy companies.  These sanctions are significant, but they are also targeted — designed to have the maximum impact on Russia while limiting any spillover effects on American companies or those of our allies.”

White House press secretary Josh Earnest said Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin spoke by phone this morning about the new sanctions regime. It was unclear if that call took place before or after MH17 went down.

Earnest told reporters aboard Air Force One en route to Delaware that Obama “had been briefed about the airliner crash and had instructed his staff to keep him updated,” according to the White House pool report.

Obama is speaking at the Port of Wilmington today to “announce a new initiative, using his pen and his phone, to increase private sector investment in our nation’s infrastructure.”

Malaysia Airlines, which lost Flight MH370 in March, has given few updates as the situation unfolds.

An aide to Ukraine’s interior minister posted on Facebook that they believe the plane was taken down by a Buk missile system “kindly” given to pro-Russian rebels in the region.

The aide said the plane was flying at 10,000 meters when it was taken down. “Cynicism of Putin and his terrorists have no limit! Europe, USA, Canada, the civilized world – open your eyes! Help us all what you can! This is a war between good and evil!” the aide wrote.

“Here’s a video from the crash site! Some rascals shouted ‘Beauty! Beautifully lit’! Nonhumans!”

YouTube Preview Image

Ukrainians posted photos of a Dutch passport reportedly found near the crash site.

 

 

 

 

 

Bridget Johnson is a veteran journalist whose news articles and opinion columns have run in dozens of news outlets across the globe. Bridget first came to Washington to be online editor at The Hill, where she wrote The World from The Hill column on foreign policy. Previously she was an opinion writer and editorial board member at the Rocky Mountain News and nation/world news columnist at the Los Angeles Daily News. She is an NPR contributor and has contributed to USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, National Review Online, Politico and more, and has myriad television and radio credits as a commentator. Bridget is Washington Editor for PJ Media.

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Top Rated Comments   
good news! president golfing guy was actually informed of this tragedy by u.s. gov. officials. that's new and improved.

guess his t.v. wasn't working.

18 weeks ago
18 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (21)
All Comments   (21)
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May be separatists. But more probably it was Ukrainian army - they have the history, after all. In 2001 they shot down a Tel-Aviv - Novosibirsk flight over Black Sea.
17 weeks ago
17 weeks ago Link To Comment
Some of the low-lifes acquiring advanced weapons around the world would bring down an airliner just to pick the pockets of the dead.
18 weeks ago
18 weeks ago Link To Comment
according to regional (super secret) intel, jason bourneski was said to have been seen in the area and will be blamed for this tragedy, as soon as the proof can be retrieved from the site.

that's about as close to any truth as we are likely to ever get.
18 weeks ago
18 weeks ago Link To Comment
I wonder if this Malaysia Airlines 777 had satellite tracking enabled. Would be nice to know the details of the flight independent of claims by governments. Would also be good to have good intelligence regarding exactly where the missile was fired from.
18 weeks ago
18 weeks ago Link To Comment
If Shrillary was still our Secretary of State she would be a prime suspect.
18 weeks ago
18 weeks ago Link To Comment
A bad day for Vlad's apologists.
18 weeks ago
18 weeks ago Link To Comment
The usual crash investigation of this will be a problem. I suspect someone's special forces are already removing incriminating evidence from the crash site.
18 weeks ago
18 weeks ago Link To Comment
And Putin likes to remove inconvenient witnesses too.
18 weeks ago
18 weeks ago Link To Comment
Russia does have a history of shooting down civilian air liners.
But then Russia has a long history of shooting civilians period.
18 weeks ago
18 weeks ago Link To Comment
We're not so pure.........our Navy.......supposedly the best and the brightest.....shot down an Iranian Airliner on a normally scheduled route over the Persian Gulf....
18 weeks ago
18 weeks ago Link To Comment
Yes, these are very similar events.

Well, except for a few details. Like:

1. The Iranian "airliner" was transponding a military signal.
2. Bodies pulled from the water were naked.
3. The Iranian "airliner" was flying straight at at a U.S. warship.

But don't let those details bother you.
18 weeks ago
18 weeks ago Link To Comment
There is no strategic advantage in shooting down civilian airplanes flying at high altitudes. There is some breakdown in military command when this happens. Either they're incompetent at identifying targets or they don't have very good control over the soldiers with the weapons.
18 weeks ago
18 weeks ago Link To Comment
KAL Flight 007 in 1983 comes to mind, but I can't think of any others.
18 weeks ago
18 weeks ago Link To Comment
KAL 902, shot down in 1978.
18 weeks ago
18 weeks ago Link To Comment
Thanks!
18 weeks ago
18 weeks ago Link To Comment
Kaleva OH-ALL, a Finnish airliner, shot down by Soviet Union on June 14, 1940
18 weeks ago
18 weeks ago Link To Comment
Thanks again!
18 weeks ago
18 weeks ago Link To Comment
Glad to be helpful...and like your avatar.
18 weeks ago
18 weeks ago Link To Comment
Greetings:

“Has anybody here seen my old friend Catherine ?
Can you tell me where she’s gone ?”

I don’t suppose that this will be a sufficient basis for the resurfacing of Catherine Ashton, the EU’s Foreign Ministress, who did so much to get the Ukrainian situation a-roiling before she handed off that tar baby to President Obama, another paragon of geopolitical competence, and went off somewhere to work on her Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech.

When the Ukraine first began its descent into EU lust, I saw an interview on France24 with a Britosh historian by the name of Ben Judah. He described the situation as “The banks versus the tanks.” which I found much more profound than flippant. Well, yesterday the banks (via President Obama) played another sanctions card. Today, the tanks seem to have responded.
18 weeks ago
18 weeks ago Link To Comment
good news! president golfing guy was actually informed of this tragedy by u.s. gov. officials. that's new and improved.

guess his t.v. wasn't working.

18 weeks ago
18 weeks ago Link To Comment
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