In a turn of events, Iran took responsibility for the downing of a Ukrainian passenger plane taking off from Tehran on Wednesday morning shortly after striking two US bases in Iraq. The incident, which Tehran previously denied involvement, stated the Boeing approached an Iranian base which led to the miscue.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani vowed to identify and punish everyone involved in the unintentional shooting, stating it to be a “disastrous mistake.” The investigation, launched shortly after the plane went down, “concluded that regrettably missiles fired due to human error caused the horrific crash of the Ukrainian plane and the death of 176 innocent people,” Rouhani tweeted.
In a further Tweet, Rouhani expresses the Islamic Republic’s deepest regrets, with thoughts and prayers going out to the families of those killed in the strike. Rouhani has also arranged for compensation payments to the victims’ families, and ordered reforms regarding the nation’s air defense system.
What Caused Iran to Down the Plane?
It’s important to remember the plane had taken off during a night of tension when Iran launched retaliatory strikes against the US due to President Donald Trump’s successful assassination of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani – after which Iran vowed revenge on the popular military leader’s death, who played a large role in the scaling back of ISIS in Iraq.
The Iranian Army General Staff stressed the mistake was made due to the heightened tensions earlier, with Iran anticipating further strikes from the US in retaliation to Iran’s striking of the US bases in Iraq. This caused all the nation’s air defenses to be placed on high alert and ready to “respond to possible threats of the highest level” after of course Trump warned of targeting fifty-two Iranian cultural sites, which of course would’ve led to the deaths of hundreds if not thousands of Iranian civilians residing in the area.
The army detected increased activity of US warplanes around the nation (the US currently boasts at least 40 military bases surrounding the country) and received alerts of airstrikes on “strategic sites” across Iran.
When the plane, Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752, took off from the airport in Tehran, it approached “an important military site” of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), traveling at an altitude of what can be described as a “hostile flight.”
The General Staff stated further investigation will determine all the causes of the strike and those responsible will face consequences.
Who Was Ultimately Responsible?
A top IRGC officer stated the airliner was mistaken for an incoming cruise missile and the commander of the anti-aircraft unit had only ten seconds to decide whether to fire, explaining the incident occurred as Tehran braced for US strikes as tension rose to a peak following the strikes on the US bases.
When the unit commander sought confirmation, he experienced communication issues and was forced to make (the wrong) decision on his own. The IRGC notified authorities shortly thereafter, stating it likely hit the plane yet the information was not disclosed during investigation of the crash site.
Iran’s earlier denial of taking responsibility in the incident was procedural in nature, with the commander explaining that neither the IRGC nor the military intended to hide the gaffe, instead waiting until the investigation was complete before notifying truth to the public.
My article Wednesday stated at the time there was zero evidence that Tehran had downed the Ukrainian airliner which of course by Friday evening while I was away, the Islamic Republic completed its investigation and concluded that the airliner was indeed struck by the IRGC.
That prior article, which can be viewed here, was intended to leave zero stones unturned, pointing out the potential for a false flag to frame Iran for the attack, as the nation of Israel did something similar on June 8th, 1967, striking a US naval ship the USS Liberty while subsequently intending to blame Egypt for the attack which killed 34 naval personnel and wounded 171 others.
At the time, Iran was not showing photos or any evidence that a missile had hit the site, denying involvement while investigating the incident before releasing its findings to the world on Friday evening, admitting to the blunder with Rouhani offering sincere apologies and compensation for all families involved.
It Probably Never Would’ve Happened If….
If….if Donald Trump doesn’t threaten to strike fifty-two Iranian cultural sites, does the airliner safely land in Kiev?
We’ll never know for sure, but I would think so, given that the Americans would definitely have its missile defense systems on high alert and ready to shoot at anything that’s moving in the sky if another nation’s president is threatening to strike places that contain a civilian population.
We all can agree on that one.
If Trump doesn’t illegally launch strikes that ultimately killed Soleimani, that plane is probably landing safely in Kiev. Remember, Trump did this without Congressional approval, claiming he had the right to do so under the War Powers Act – however absolutely zero evidence exists today that Soleimani was threatening the US with attacks.
Trump and his cabinet claimed Soleimani was responsible for hundreds of American deaths in Iraq, but American deaths in Iraq haven’t reached three figures since 2009, as a previous article of mine pointed out.
Lacking evidence, or as Mike Pence claimed ‘the evidence regarding Soleimani’s imminent threat is too sensitive for Congress,’ Trump launched the strikes that killed the Iranian General regardless. But then again, how can anyone really believe Pence after he attempted to connect Soleimani with 9/11, which involved fifteen Saudi Arabians out of the nineteen total hijackers, claiming ten of the twelve terrorists were assisted by Soleimani.
Pence later stated he meant to say twelve of the nineteen terrorists were assisted by Soleimani. While the 9/11 Commission Report indicated “strong evidence Iran facilitated transit of al-Qaeda members into and out of Afghanistan before 9/11 and some were future hijackers,” Soleimani’s name was not mentioned. However, much of this assistance, if this proved to be true, lies in Iran’s policy of not stamping Saudi passports in the nation.