The 3rd episode in the ongoing investigation by the group known as “MH17 Inquiry.”
This episode presents a curious puzzle that might remind astute readers of some similar ongoing oddities surrounding the BBC’s Saving Syria’s Children documentary. The BBC features here also. The program in question on this occasion being Conspiracy Files: Who Shot Down MH17?
This episode features the story of Sergey Sokolov, former employee of oligarch Boris Berezovsky, who claims to possess a dossier of materials that help to incriminate the Ukrainian government and armed forces in the shooting down of MH17. A dossier he gave in full to the BBC when they came to interview him for the making of the above-mentioned documentary.
We need to emphasise at this point that the validity of this alleged evidence is not vouched for by the film-makers, nor by us and indeed that isn’t the point of the film. Sokolov is a dubious character with a history of less than straightforward involvement with the MH17 investigation. One would be unwise to take anything he offers at face value, and this has to be emphasised.
But it’s not the bona fides of Sokolov’s alleged evidence that matters here, it’s what the BBC chose to do with it.
Even though Sokolov presented them with all of his potential evidence, including some video allegedly taken inside the BUK that shot down MH17 (improbable as that might sound), the BBC chose to focus on only one small part of what he gave them, a piece of audio allegedly of two “CIA agent” discussing some obscure “operation” that one of them is supposed to “supervise personally.” Coincidentally, this audio had been sold to Sokolov (as he tells it) by a member of the SBU only a short time before the BBC approached him for the interview.
The BBC program doesn’t even attempt to analyse this audio for provenance or authenticity, it simply discusses the alleged ID of one of voices. In a blatant straw man exercise it claims “they” (it doesn’t say who “they” are) have identified one of the men as David Stern, a BBC correspondent in Ukraine, and proceeds as if establishing whether this is true or false is equivalent to discrediting the audio.
It’s not equivalent to that at all, of course, and at the end of the Conspiracy Files, the audio remains entirely an unknown quantity.
This does not at all mean it’s genuine. Both it and the alleged BUK video and the whole of Sokolov’s dossier might be pure fakery, but we are left with the puzzle of why the BBC chose to overlook 90% of the evidence Sokolov gave them, and why their “rebuttal” of the audio amounts to little more than glib sleight of hand.
MH17 Inqury’s short video asks some important questions, and also allows us to see that contentious video allegedly made inside the UAF BUK on that fateful day in July 2014 – which the BBC for some reason decided not to either air or debunk on its program.