satellite photo of fighter jet zapping MH17, appeared on a russian forum a month ago

Update #2- Definitive debunk here.

Update #1- Colonel Cassad reports that the still photograph first appeared on the Web on Oct 15, here (allow time for the autotranslator to work through the page). I’ve inserted the high-resolution copy of the photo (7406×5000) direct from that post. You can see Donetsk airport, to the west. The commentary says: “The image was obtained by mail from enthusiasts Russian Wikileaks, the source is not named. The time on the image corresponds to the time indicated in the data of objective control presented by the Ministry of Defense of Russia. According to the inscription, the international designations of time, the picture would be from the US satellite intelligence apparatus.”- RB


A unique frame from moments before the crash of the Boeing in Donetsk
Mikhail Leontyev, “Odnako” (analytical program “However” – RB),, Nov 14 2014 18:00 MSK



Hello from “Odnako”! At the disposal of Channel One was sensational picture, presumably made by a foreign satellite spy in the last seconds of flight Malaysian Boeing over Ukraine. On the eve of the most important meetings of world leaders at the summit of G20 in Australia, the story of the death of the passengers of this flight is more than relevant. The frame speaks in favor of the version, which in the West is almost never heard. It is known that at the summit in Brisbane, Australian Prime Minister Abbott is threatening to ask our President in the rigid form a question about Malaysian Boeing. We will try to facilitate his task. Back in August, the Russian Union of Engineers issued its report on the possible causes of the crash, which received fairly widespread in the media and the Internet. Experts conducted a detailed analysis of all available information from all sources, produced technical calculations and elaborated version of causes of death “Boeing”. The conclusion of the experts was that the only technically possible version was the destruction of the Malaysian airliner with a missile and gun armament another plane. Pay attention to one point in the report is the absence of any credible evidence of the start of the missiles “ground-to-air”. Start “Buk” is accompanied by a fiery cloud, a deafening roar that can be heard within a radius of up to 10 km, and inversion followed which is clearly observed in the sky for up to 10 minutes. In short, there was most likely no “Buk”, no start from the ground. In the presence of district disaster dozens of professional observers from all sides and thousands unprofessional, no one has seen or recorded. While the aircraft was seen and recorded. And it was definitely not Russian planes. The arguments of the experts were heard on the Internet, the report was translated into English and German. First Vice-President of the Russian Union of Engineers Ivan Andrievsky said:

When we began to receive a large amount of information, among which was a different material, engineering calculations, and ultimately on Nov 12, we received this. “I fully agree with the results of your analysis of the causes of the crash of the Boeing,” says the man who presented himself as a graduate of MIT, Aviaexport with twenty years of experience, George Bilt. “The Boeing was hit by a pursuing fighter jet. First, the crew fired from a cannon, then the cab was struck by an air-to-air missile, then the right engine and right wing were struck by a missile with thermal homing system.” The photo which is clearly evident in the launch of the rocket from under the left wing fighter exactly at the cockpit, was attached to the email. On the terrain, weather conditions, the dimensions of the aircraft shot fully consistent with the circumstances of the accident. We saw a satellite image taken with not a very high orbit. And such images are usually made for general intelligence air and ground space. In accordance with the coordinates specified in the picture, we can assume that the picture was taken by a UKUSA satellite. We undertook a detailed analysis of this picture and no signs of tampering were found.

All versions should be considered, including the proverbial “Buk”. The person who sent the picture, showing how the MiG-29 kills passenger “Boeing”, whoever he was, of course, professional. In order to forge this requires even more professionalism than to access such information. Lord, you have these pictures! Or others! Show them, finally! Hands on the table! Because at the moment there is every reason to believe that the committed state crimes by those who destroyed the plane deliberately and cynically. And those who consciously and cynically hides it with exhaustive information. Goodbye from “Odnako”!


  1. Stan
    Posted November 14, 2014 at 7:21 pm | Permalink

    What a bullshit! Authours never learned geometry at school. There’s object’s size disagreement. Such a picture could never be obtained neither from LEO nor from any other orbit.

  2. niqnaq
    Posted November 14, 2014 at 7:23 pm | Permalink

    I know. The Boeing looks much too big, relative to the airport.

  3. ukrop
    Posted November 14, 2014 at 8:10 pm | Permalink

    This photo is a fake compiled from a google earth 2011-2012 photos. Look on similar clouds here: . Left picture is from google earth program, taken 9.18.2011. You can downoad this program and find this picture by yourself. How its possible, that pictures from 2011 and 2014 have exactly the same clouds on exactly the same place?

  4. Anton
    Posted November 14, 2014 at 8:57 pm | Permalink

    can you explain ” There’s object’s size disagreement. ” ? What exactly is in disagreement ? Are you qualified to render the opinion ” Such a picture could never be obtained neither from LEO nor from any other orbit.” Thank you

  5. hothothot
    Posted November 14, 2014 at 9:58 pm | Permalink

    What are talking about? Object’s size disagreement? Bullshit is what you “experts” say without knowing any information about hight, distance, angle and optics specs.

  6. niqnaq
    Posted November 15, 2014 at 1:35 am | Permalink

    The argument is this: “The length of the Boeing is 74m, the length of the runway at Donetsk airport is 4000m, height of flight of the Boeing is 10000m. Now take and draw an isosceles trapezoid with base 4000m and 74m and the distance between the bases 10000m. Now to get the point of shooting extend the sides of the prism, and you will find that point of shooting is only 200m above the upper base of the prism. That is, to get a snapshot on which Boeing length is comparable to the runway at Donetsk airport, the picture has to be shot from a height of 200 metres above the Boeing. It is simply not physically able to be shot from a satellite.” However, changing the apparent relative sizes of foreground and background is dependent on the focal length of the lens, not given by the objects’ real sizes as the argument claims. The question then must be, why is the attack jet not similarly magnified? Is its flight altitude so much lower? The photos below supposedly demonstrate the effect of focal length of the lens, but arguably, they don’t really prove what they suggest because the camera has moved closer to or further from the girl from one shot to the next.


  7. wgst
    Posted November 15, 2014 at 3:54 am | Permalink

    A good twitter thread debunking this (guy’s anti-Russian,but his reasoning on this seems sound):

  8. anton
    Posted November 15, 2014 at 4:03 am | Permalink

    niqnaq, I like your argumet about the “focal distance”; it brings a physics discussion . Lets assume that this shot was taking at the angle( the focal was not directly above the object) does it change anything ? Please give us calculations, give us math, simple graphics. Please support your arguments if you really know what you are talking about. Is it possible that bi-focal lens was used (similar to computer glasses, the center object is magnified but the rest as is ? ) The only thing is questionable about this image is absence of the contrail rocket launch behind the jet ……

  9. niqnaq
    Posted November 15, 2014 at 4:53 am | Permalink

    wgst, I don’t see a thread about this story specifically, on twitter, but the socalled ‘bellingcat analysis’ is here:

    I don’t find it very impressive. As for anton, listen, I don’t claim to know what they are talking about, I just tell you what they are saying. My own thoughts on this have nothing to do with ‘proof’ or ‘disproof’. I accept that the photo may or may not be genuine, I don’t claim to be able to decide which it is. The point is that its appearance on Russian TV is timed for the eve of the G20 summit, where the Oz moron supposedly intends some sort of public demarche. And the question that interests me is, whether Putin is going to cite this story specifically in his response to the Oz moron.

    To judge by past similar events, I would say not. I think Putin will make some vague remarks about satellite photos, without committing himself. For instance, he could say that there are bound to be conflicting claims about satellite evidence as long as the US side (as they always call it) withholds what evidence it has. And he can also say that there is conflicting evidence about Buk movements on the ground, as he has said before. But he is likely to avoid any direct assertion that anything is definitely true or false, and emphasise the uncertainty of all of it, and blame the US side for that uncertainty. This is a perfectly adequate tactic, because he is not trying to make a demarche. He never does.

  10. wgst
    Posted November 15, 2014 at 6:22 am | Permalink

    Yes… the timing is certainly what’s important here. There’s been a huge Western propaganda push against Russia/Putin leading up to G20, and of course Russia’s going to push back.

    But the fact that there are some (according to the debunkers) painfully obvious blunders in this “evidence” -AND that it was “leaked” on Russian TV – is what has me scratching my head. Something doesn’t add up here.

  11. Doug Colwell
    Posted November 15, 2014 at 6:43 am | Permalink

    Much as we might wish…..

    It is absurd, possibly a joke. In the photos shown of focal length the 24mm is close to the lens and the the 200mm is distant. Low earth orbit can be as low as 200 miles. That would make it distant.

  12. Posted November 15, 2014 at 11:00 am | Permalink

    The commercial plane in the image does not look like a Boeing 777-200ER – the 777-200 has a straight part on the inside of the wings 90 degrees to the body. Also the fighter in the image is a Su-27 or later, Not a Su-25. A Su-25 has almost straight wings and a single tailfin & rudder, while a more modern Su-27 or later has sloped wings and a double tailfin.

    This is right wing spew – pushed to make Moscow look like liars – easily discredited by amateurs and then serves as “proof” that “Moscow is lying”. Thats the reason right wing rupert murdoch rags like the Daily Mail is running with this story.

  13. niqnaq
    Posted November 15, 2014 at 11:28 am | Permalink

    There is a serious effort to prove the photo is not necessarily fake, here:

  14. Tristan
    Posted November 15, 2014 at 5:29 pm | Permalink

    A satellite would be at least 300 km above the ground. So it would also be 290 km above the plane. The plane would look almost the same size as if it were on the ground. But in this fake photo, it looks like it is as big as the airport. For the airplane to look the same size as the airport, the plane would have to be only a few km below the satellite. I don’t think Malaysian Airlines is operating in space yet 🙂 This photo is simple childish bullshit. Russia should just apologize, pay the victims of MH17, and go back to civilized behavior.

  15. niqnaq
    Posted November 15, 2014 at 5:33 pm | Permalink

    No, you are just childish bullshit, because you haven’t bothered to read any of the comments and understand what they are saying, namely, that there is a real and legitimate debate about whether such a photo is plausible. It is not as you have been told by your teenage tabloid sources, an obvious fake. So fuck off.

  16. milosevic
    Posted November 16, 2014 at 10:05 pm | Permalink

    changing the apparent relative sizes of foreground and background is dependent on the focal length of the lens, not given by the objects’ real sizes as the argument claims.

    This statement is flatly false. The size of the objects as projected onto the image plane depends on the focal length of the lens; the relative sizes of the images is determined by their actual size and distance from the camera. It is not within the ability of any camera to change the relative image sizes of objects which are in line with the camera position, as long as light continues to travel in straight lines.

    The photos below supposedly demonstrate the effect of focal length of the lens, but arguably, they don’t really prove what they suggest because the camera has moved closer to or further from the girl from one shot to the next.

    These pictures prove EXACTLY THE OPPOSITE. “The camera has moved closer to or further from the girl”. Nobody imagines that she is actually taller than the church in the background, just as a Boeing 777-200 is not actually longer than the Donetsk airport runway. The camera has moved, and the magnification has been adjusted to keep the image of the girl about the same size. It is impossible to produce such a series of pictures without moving the camera.

    there is a real and legitimate debate about whether such a photo is plausible

    Light travels in straight lines. No amount of discussion about “optical devices” can erase that fact. The only possible explanation for the fact that the 64m long Boeing appears about the same size as the 4000m long Donetsk airport runway is that the height of the camera above the airport is (4000/64 = 62.5) times as much as the height of the camera above the Boeing. But the altitude of the Boeing is known to be 10km. Therefore the height of the camera above the Boeing is 163m. This rules out a satellite; a surveillance aircraft is a possibility.

    The distance between the Boeing and (what is obviously) the Su-27 appears to be about ten times the length of the Boeing, about 650m. But both aircraft seem to have been photographed from almost directly above. If the height of the camera above them is only a quarter of the distance between them, this is impossible; one or both of them would be seen mainly from the side.

    Therefore the picture is artificial.

  17. milos
    Posted November 17, 2014 at 12:30 pm | Permalink

    milosevic – he could be flying at an angle, thus appearing to be photographed from directly above 😉

  18. niqnaq
    Posted November 17, 2014 at 9:28 pm | Permalink

    See this debunk:

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