(Note: The great Ukrainian sniper mystery now has its own "Zapruder film." At the end of this post, we will have more to say about the video presentation embedded above.)
A couple of posts down, we looked at the very revelatory Paet/Ashton conversation about the "mystery snipers" who -- arguably -- created the current Ukraine crisis. That telephone conversation alerted the world to a genuine mystery: Who were
these unseen gunmen? Whose side where they on? Infuriatingly, the Paet/Ashton call has received very little coverage in the US media -- not even on the left side of the blogosphere.
There was a time when an allegation of this sort would generate widespread discussion. The official deniers would be forced to stand before cameras and harrumph and snort and officially deny. The president himself might feel obligated to say something.
I just ran a search of the NewsBank database for what the database purports to be 3,253 U.S.-based media sources for the period March 3 – 7, 2014.
My search parameters were: sniper* and (Ashton or Paet or Estonia*).
NewsBank was able to find a total of eight items in the U.S.-based media that mentioned this revelation. A stunning example not only of non-coverage of an important revelation (the truth of which requires verification, of course). But of suppression of an important revelation, plain and simple.
The corporate-controlled information system of the United States is magnificent when it comes to creating the illusion that we are awash with news about the world.  No wonder Liz Wahl fled from her job as a presenter over the RT-USA cable TV channel on March 5, justifying her resignation on grounds that she’s “proud to be an American” and doesn’t like the nasty things that RT-USA reports about her country.
I didn't talk about the Wahl thing when it happened, but perhaps I should have. The more I found out about her, the more difficulty I had understanding why such a pro-American, anti-Russian individual ever took a job with RT. Perhaps her job was akin to Lee Harvey Oswald's alleged "defection" to the USSR. If she lands a gig with Fox -- well, some of us will need no further evidence.
(It may seem silly to mention LHO in this context. On the other hand, if you're an American, which historical event comes first to your mind when the talk turns to mystery gunmen and a change of government?)
Let's get back to our main topic. The sniper mystery has received some
mainstream attention. Here's CNN
, and here's AP
. (The latter story does not mention Paet, but does refer indirectly to the call.)
The government's new health minister — a doctor who helped oversee medical treatment for casualties during the protests — told The Associated Press that the similarity of bullet wounds suffered by opposition victims and police indicates the shooters were trying to stoke tensions on both sides and spark even greater violence, with the goal of toppling Yanukovych.
"I think it wasn't just a part of the old regime that (plotted the provocation), but it was also the work of Russian special forces who served and maintained the ideology of the (old) regime," Health Minister Oleh Musiy said.
Putin has pushed the idea that the sniper shootings were ordered by opposition leaders, while Kremlin officials have pointed to a recording of a leaked phone call between Estonia's foreign minister and the European Union's foreign policy chief as evidence to back up that version.
On Tuesday, Interior Minister Arsen Avakov signaled that investigators may be turning their attention away from Ukrainian responsibility.
"I can say only one thing: the key factor in this uprising, that spilled blood in Kiev and that turned the country upside down and shocked it, was a third force," Avakov was quoted as saying by Interfax. "And this force was not Ukrainian."
(Emphasis added.) I'm not sure who the gunmen were, but this writer
has noted some perturbing parallels...
There is a related type of false flag operation commonly used to create chaos and discredit regimes or protesters: snipers.
Unknown snipers reportedly killed both Venezuelan government and opposition protesters in the attempted 2002 coup
Unknown snipers fired during Thailand’s 2010 protests
Unknown snipers allegedly have created bedlam in Syria
A Russian general alleges that – during Yeltsin’s protest in front of the Russian parliament – sniper fire came from the roof of the American Embassy
And the Estonian foreign minister claims that the new Ukranian coalition deployed snipers to discredit the former government of Ukraine
Brutal … but effective and cheap.
Because it doesn’t cost much to hire one or a handful of snipers to access rooftops or bridge overpasses, create chaos, and then quietly disappear.
A comment appended to that blog post seems particularly well-researched. I will take the liberty of reprinting it...
Nikolay Starikov tells of several cases of unknown snipers shooting at civilians and military
In february 1917 unknown machine gunners massacred civilians and the tsar regime was blamed.
In october 1993 during Yeltsins westernbacked coup General Sorokin said at a Special State Duma Commission session, according to a verbatim report cited by Dmitry Rogozin, former Russian ambassador to NATO: “They were shot from the back. I saw it with my own eyes. “Fire was coming from the roof of the American Embassy, from the bell tower near Hotel Mir. All our soldiers were shot from the back. I do not know who the shooters were, but I could make a guess.”
....But the young soldiers were not the only victims of Black October. Starikov says, “Many residents of Moscow were shot by mysterious snipers – the American Embassy was not the only firing point. They shot at passersby. Their aim remained the same – to imitate ‘crimes’, stir up a rebellion, and incite fratricidal war.”
In Starikov’s view the shooters were not amateurs, but high-ranked professionals. How does he make that assessment? “Remember the shot made at Gennady Sergeev, a Special Forces officer, in front of the White House,” he says. “The bullet went in between the lower edge of his helmet and the upper edge of his bullet-proof vest.”
...According to Starikov, unknown snipers acted in a similar fashion in Kyrgyzstan, Iran, Thailand and Romania, targeting women, children and youth, the segments of the population that government forces are least likely to fire at.
In each of these countries, sniper intervention came only when Western diplomacy was seen to be failing.
Tulsa World has seen fit to mention the mystery snipers, but -- unsurprisingly -- places the blame on Putin
Forensic evidence, in particular the similarity of the bullet wounds, led him and others to conclude that snipers were targeting both sides of the standoff at Maidan — and that the shootings were intended to generate a wave of revulsion so strong that it would topple Yanukovych and also justify a Russian invasion.
This theory has problems, to say the least. Foremost among those problems is this inconvenient fact: If the snipers were Russian, why have Russian sources tirelessly publicized the Paet/Ashton call, which most of the American media treats as a non-event? Before that call hit YouTube, most of us had no clue that a sniper mystery even existed
; everyone presumed that the cops fired on unarmed demonstrators.
Russia wants her oil to flow unimpeded through pipelines
which run through Ukraine. I fail to see how that goal is eased by a possible civil war in that country.
The video embedded at the top of this post -- which, I must warn you, is grim and sometimes difficult to watch -- argues that the bullets did not come from the police but from the opposite direction. I don't claim that this presentation is either unbiased or thoroughly convincing. However, it does give us a better idea as to where the victims were and what they underwent. To my eyes, the most compelling piece of video evidence comes around the 4:22 mark.
If you have an alternate interpretation, please share!