Critics Assert MH17 Attack Photo is Fake

The Internet is saying ‘fake!’ to pictures published by a Russian state-controlled news agency.  Russia’s Channel One recently released satellite photographs that show a fighter jet attacking what is presumed to be the Malaysian Airlines flight MH17.

The news agency is claiming that this photo proves the commercial flight was shot down by Ukrainian fighter jets.

Reuters produced this short video on the story.

By now, it is very clear that the situation in Ukraine is tense.  MH17 was attacked this past summer, killing all 298 passengers.  Initial reports from Western media said that the flight was shot down by ground-based missile systems.  Sources told the Associated Press that the plane was attacked mistakenly by pro-Russian separatist rebels and Russian soldiers, USA Today reports.   Russia has not claimed any responsibility for the tragedy and blames Ukrainian forces for the crash.

These new photos seem to support Russia’s claims.   According to Reuters, the Channel One presenter said,

The pictures support that version which has hardly been heard in the West.

Chanel One says they received the photographs from George Bilt, supposedly an aviation expert with a degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. BuzzFeed has released an article in which they say that they have been in contact with Bilt.

He says that he had come across the photograph on an internet forum, but did not have any way of verifying the image.  Bilt then sent the images to Andreyevsky, the “expert” from Chanel One, who then published the images on Friday.  It was not Bilt’s intention to rekindle tensions over the crash.  BuzzFeed says that Bilt is sorry to see how Chanel One handled the situation:

I am quite unhappy that my bona fide informal attempt possibly became a source of yet another battle in a media war.

BuzzFeed’s article, which affirms that the photographs are “clearly” fake, provides many details supporting this assertion.

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