Disinfo: Foreign espionage could be to blame for Iran downing flight PS752

Summary

Foreign espionage might be to blame for Iran downing flight PS752. Today, there is a new angle about the recent tragedy that occurred in Iran (downing of the Ukrainian plane PS752): it may have been caused by the fact that someone intercepted the signal and gave a signal to the operator (Iranian base) to act differently.

Disproof

Conspiracy theory about the downing of the Ukrainian flight PS 752.

The Iranian authorities initially denied responsibility but the Revolutionary Guard admitted that the plane had been mistaken for a "cruise missile" during heightened tensions with the US.

On January 11, the President of the Islamic Republic of Iran Hassan Rouhani wrote on Twitter: “Armed Forces’ internal investigation has concluded that regrettably, missiles fired due to human error caused the horrific crash".

Furthermore, Commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps Aerospace Force Brigadier General Amir Ali Hajizadeh said: "the operator of an air defence base near Tehran mistook the doomed jetliner with a cruise missile, failed to obtain confirmation from the higher ranks because of disorder of the communication systems, and finally decided to fire at the target as there were only 10 seconds left for making a decision".

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 180
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 16/01/2020
  • Language/target audience: Arabic
  • Country: Iran, Ukraine
  • Keywords: Conspiracy theory, PS752, Conspiracy
  • Outlet: Sputnik web Arabic, jpnews-sy, abudhabi-news, elbayan-news, emeknes, saadaonline, bbcnews1, masr20, albidda, akhbarten, news-araby, sabq-sa, newsaliraq, i2arabic, miralnews, arabyoum, alalamtv, adentimes
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White Helmets used chemical weapons in Syria in order to accuse Assad government

White Helmets used chemical weapons in Syria in order to put the blame on the Assad government.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin narratives portraying the White Helmets as a Western-backed terrorist proxy and, implicitly, denying the responsibility of the Assad regime for chemical attacks perpetrated during the Syrian civil war.

The UN-OPCW Joint Investigative Mechanism found Syria’s Government responsible for the April 2017 attack in Khan Shaykhun. On April 2018, Russia vetoed a US-drafted UN Security Council resolution that would have created a new inquiry to ascertain responsibility for chemical weapons attacks in Syria. In June  2018, the OPCW members granted it the power to assign responsibility for chemical attacks.

Facts about WWII are being covered-up in Europe in order to conceal “unpleasant moments” in its history

Facts about WWII are being covered-up in Europe in order to conceal “unpleasant moments” in its own history.

At the end of December, Putin had criticised the cover-up of facts about the Second World War in Europe. In his view, Western politicians want to blame the communists for unleashing the war in order to conceal “unpleasant moments” in their history.

“I have the impression not only that this knowledge is undesirable in Europe today, but that it is being deliberately concealed by trying to assign the blame for the unleashing of the Second World War by the Nazis, among other things, to the Communists.”

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about WWII that is part of the Kremlin’s policy of historical revisionism.

It accuses Europe of "covering-up of facts about the Second World War". According to this policy, the official Russian historiography is the only “true” way of interpreting the historical events about WWII. The European Parliament called the war the bloodiest tragedy of the century, which resulted in millions of victims of authoritarian regimes both of fascist Germany and the USSR. The European Parliament adopted a resolution, describing the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact of 23 August 1939 as a key element, causing World War II:

Five peculiarities around the Boeing shot down in Iran, US might be behind the crash

There are serious doubts even in expert circles that Iran accidentally shot down the Ukrainian plane. There are five peculiarities around the incident:

  1. The fact that Iran quickly admitted responsibility […] gives rise to thoughts that Iran took responsibility consciously. Maybe to prevent an even more serious problem.
  2. The quality of the first video is too high; as if they intentionally make it to later introduce it [to the world] – as proof that Iran is guilty.
  3. The weird behaviour of Canadian intelligence. Canada itself believed at first that the crash had happened because technical issues and only changed the story once Donald Trump said he did not believe it had been caused by a mechanical error.
  4. The demonstration on 12 January at the Amirkabir University in Tehran, where protesters demand the government to resign. Even though this was not close to anything similar to Maidan in Ukraine, but certainly worthy of attention.
  5. It is incomprehensible why Iran would give the flight recorders, the black boxes to France instead of inviting French experts to Iran.

The plane might have been shot down by the equipment of the Iranian Air Defence Forces, but it cannot be excluded that some external forces had an influence on the air defence equipment of the Islamic Republic. The US has the technical prerequisites for such influencing efforts.

Disproof

A collection of unfounded claims, attempting to depict the United States as the culprit in the tragedy.

Iran admitted its guilt after several days, as more and more details on the incident appeared. There is no evidence whatsoever that Iran wanted to prevent any potential future "more serious problem" and there is no proof that the first video was prepared in advance to use it as evidence against Iran. The Canadian PM Justin Trudeau, when announcing that the plane might have downed by Iran, said that Canadian intelligence received input from allies and had their own sources as well. Intelligence-sharing is commonplace among Western allies.