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A Few Thoughts About the Rumors Around the Downing of Kogalymavia Flight 9268
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Well, I tried to avoid writing about this topic until more hard facts became available. But since this is apparently turning into a political fight between, on one side, Russia and Egypt and, on the other, the US and UK, I think that I can at least offer a few general thoughts.

What we know so far is this: Kogalymavia Flight 9268 had left Sharm el-Sheikh International Airport, Egypt, en route to Pulkovo Airport in Saint Petersburg. The aircraft reached an altitude of 33,500 ft (10,200 m) at 404 kn (748 km/h; 465 mph). Then something absolutely catastrophic happened. The pilots did not radio anything at all, the plane dropped and crashed. The tail section was found 5km away from the rest of the plan. Just from that data we can come to some initial conclusions: this was not a “regular” mechanical failure (like, say, an engine fire) but something which happened so fast that the pilots did not even have the time to react. The aircraft broke up in mid-air. Only three things could have caused this:

  1. A sudden and catastrophic structural failure
  2. A anti-aircraft missile
  3. A bomb inside the aircraft

The first option is possible, and there are reports that the tail had a crack in the back. Other reports mention that the aircraft was involved in an tailstrike 14 years ago. However, this aircraft was inspected, several times, the tailstrike incident was recorded and the long term dangers of tailstrikes are also well known. So the possibility of a catastrophic structural failure is sound.

The second option makes no sense to me at all. I know of no man portable or even SUV-mounted missile which could strike an aircraft flying at over 10km high and at over 700km/h. As for a bigger missile, well, we would have the same problem as with MH-17, only worse: not only would such a larger missile leave a visible plume, and make a very loud noise but, unlike in the Ukraine, in the Egyptian desert the missile launcher and crew would have nowhere to hide after the launch. In fact, even getting such a large missile into the crash area would be very difficult: just like the Ukraine, Egypt is a war zone and there are a lot of “eyes in the sky”. Finally, unless the missile can acquire an infra-red signature at 10km altitude, it would have to be cued to the aircraft by radar and that emission would also be detectable. I cannot prove a negative, and I suppose one ought never to say never, but I don’t buy the missile hypothesis at all.

Which leaves the bomb. To my great regret, this is the version which I find most plausible, if only by Occam’s razor. No offense to anybody here, but the Egyptian security services don’t exactly have an impressive track of protecting tourists. And while it is clear to me that the US and UK are trying to capitalize on this tragedy, I would note that Medvedev just publicly ordered the Russian security services to provide point security in airport terminal were Russian aircraft take off from. Could it be that the Russian security services have already come to the same conclusion as the Brits and Americans?

So it boils down to this: what is more likely – a massive sudden structural failure or a bomb. I believe that the latter is much more likely.

Still, we really should wait for the official report. “Much more likely” does not mean that this is what happened. It is “much more likely” that a coin will fall heads or tails, but sometimes they do end up standing on the edge. There have been tailstrike induced catastrophic failures in the past, and the Kogalymavia airline was facing some financial difficulties, so maybe maintenance was less than stellar.

So what if it really was Daesh which blew up Flight 9268?

Horrible as this may sound, I don’t think that this is very significant, at least not on a political level.

First, Russian officials have always said that the terrorist threat for Russia was real. As soon as the Russian military operation in Syria began, officials were asked whether this would not dramatically increase the risks of terrorist attacks against Russian. Their answer was always the same one: “we already are under maximal threat, this does not make it worse“. This is forgotten in the West, but Russia is still battling a terrorist insurgency in Dagestan. Wahabi crazies are regularly arrested even in Moscow! The anti-terror war for Russia has never stopped and the intervention in Syria is just one more episode of a war which really began following the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. Yes, this is an immense human tragedy, but it is no worse than Budennovsk or the Nord-Ost episode. Russian expect no less from the shaitans they have been fighting for decades now.

Second, the fact that Daesh had to strike abroad indirectly indicates that they did not have the means to strike inside Russia. Again, one should never say never, but the FSB-protected Russia is a tough one to crack for the Wahabi crazies.

Third, while I would not put it past the Egyptians to lie in their report (they really have a lot to lose!), I don’t think that the Russian officials will lie about the cause of this crash. This is too high visibility a case and, unlike the “Kursk”, this is not a military or national-security matter. The risks of attempting a cover-up much outweigh the potential benefits. Simply put: unlike the Egyptians, the Russians have no imperative reasons to lie (and that is not to say that I suspect the Egyptians of lying; I am only saying that they have much bigger motive to do so than the Russians).


Fourth, regardless of what the final report will say in a couple of months, the Egyptians will pay a huge economic price in lost income as there will always remain a suspicion about what happened. Even if the Egyptian security services did nothing wrong, and even if the final report fully clears Egypt from any wrongdoing, the panic induced by this precedent (fueled by US and UK statements) will badly hurt Egypt. In that sense, Daesh has already greatly benefited from this tragedy.

All of the above leads me to a paradoxical conclusion: whatever the final report will say, it will make very little difference to the situation on the ground. The damage has been done and there is nothing which will undo it.

(Republished from The Vineyard of the Saker by permission of author or representative)
• Category: Foreign Policy • Tags: KGL-9268, Russia, Terrorism 
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  1. Kiza says:

    The US, Canada and British pilots have been “bombing” ISIS for more than 18 months now and not even one of their civilian planes has been bombed out of the sky. Russia starts bombing and three weeks later 224 people in a civilian airliner are dead.

    What a coincidence!?

    On top of this, the US produces IR images of this crash four days later, on MH17 no images even 18 months later, only statements. Flight 9268 was shot over a desert that is nothingness, whilst MH17 was shot-down in a high military activity zone where intelligence assets would have been at the highest alert and everything monitored and recorded.

    Another coincidence!?

    How many consecutive times can a flipped coin fall onto its edge, instead of head or tail?

    • Replies: @Avery
  2. Tom_R says:


    Thanks for the interesting article, Saker.

    Jew-S-A gives billions in foreign aid to Egypt to keep it under its control and keep it pro-Israel, so the Judaists and their American puppets made a deal with Egypt’s Al Sisi (possibly in exchange for a few billion more in foreign aid or visas to Al Sisi) to help them bring down a Russian passenger jet by allowing a bomb to go through security and be put on board the Russian plane in retaliation for the Russian involvement in Syria which interfered with Israel’s plan for a Greater Israel.

    Egypt will arrest a few men/women behind this and blame them for it, (or blame some corrupt airport security officials and tie him to ISIS or Islamic Brotherhood) when the whole thing is planned and approved by the Americans, all the way to Obama, Netenyahu and their masters, the Neo-cons, the Jewish Oligarchs, such as the international Jewish criminal George Soros (Schwartz aka Soros) who has been inciting a war against Russia in Georgia and Ukraine.

  3. Avery says:

    Well said.

    And the not-so subtle celebration in the MSM of the tragedy is more circumstantial evidence.
    The Western Neocon reptiles are practically gloating: “See ? we told you Rooshians not get involved in our slaughter of innocent Syrians……this is what can happen…….not that we had anything to do with it……”

    • Replies: @Kiza
  4. Avery says:

    {Yes, this is an immense human tragedy, but it is no worse than Budennovsk or the Nord-Ost episode.}

    Saker: you forgot the worst atrocity visited by Wahhabists on Russians: the Beslan massacre of children. Shamil Basayev later admitted his group organized the school takeover.

    And you are right: nothing is going to stop Russians doing what they have to do in Syria.
    And if FSB eventually finds proof of a bomb and who did it, there will be payback, no matter how long it takes.
    Chechen terrorist leaders hiding in Turkey are being hunted down and executed by FSB kill-teams one-by-one.: 20+ years after their terrorist activities in Chechnya.

    {No offense to anybody here, but the Egyptian security services don’t exactly have an impressive track of protecting tourists.}

    And Muslim Brotherhood is everywhere in Egyptian society, including airport staff.
    However, if someone is determined to place a bomb on an airplane, they’ll do it, in Egypt or pretty much anywhere else.
    Recall the Chechen “black widow” suicide bombing of Russian passenger airplane.
    (didn’t stop or slow down Moscow wiping out Wahhabists from Caucasus)

    Other US agencies conduct tests on US TSA all the time.
    If the American public knew the stuff testers are easily able to pass through TSA and board an airplane they’d think twice about flying. TSA is basically a farce.

  5. If Daesh did it Langley did it. It looks to me like an attack on the Russian people. If they can be murdered they might have second thoughts about their leadership. It’s a pretty weak rationale for mass murder but then human life is cheap if you are the Anglo/Zio Empire.

  6. Matra says:

    Until Carlos, the Spanish air traffic controller who proved that the Kiev February 2014 massacres were carried out by fascist Banderites, and that MH17 was a result of a Ukrainian SU-25 attack on Putin’s plane (a mere 800 km away), tells us what he thinks, I won’t believe any of this CIA propaganda.

    (That the non-English speaking Carlos got a job as an international air traffic controller and that no one on the ground can remember him and that the Spanish embassy can’t confirm his existence is just more proof that the CIA-backed Russophobes are trying to discredit him).

    The Sharm El-Sheikh disaster was obviously carried out by the Nazi Banderite junta in Kiev using a BUK smuggled in just for the occasion. Shame on the Western CIA-controlled media for not reporting the truth.

  7. Kiza says:

    Did you read about the Israeli funny magazine in Paris Charlie Hebdo’s take on this tragedy? Those two drawings (they call them cartoons) tell us all we need to know. One of the two: parts of the plane and passengers are falling down on an ISIS terrorist and the caption says: “Russia’s air force intensifies its bombing.”

    Obviously, the terrorist in the drawing belongs to IS-US of Israel.

    It is actually good that things such as this are coming out into the open. Would like to read Saker’s explanation, since he keeps repeating that Russia and Israel have a wonderful relationship.

    Wake up Mr. Saker, reality check!

    • Replies: @Avery
  8. LondonBob says:

    These gents will make a lot of money now. Actually tested on an A321.

    • Replies: @Avery
  9. Avery says:

    yeah I saw it.

    just when one thinks these scum can’t get any deeper into the putrid swamp they live in, there they go…..

    • Replies: @Avery
  10. Avery says:

    this is an interesting development.

    my opinion is that airplanes need to be made internal-bomb resistant. (…..nothing is “bomb proof”). I never believed any sort of screening will prevent a determined group from placing an explosive on an airplane if they are motivated enough.

    luggage has to be screened automatically, because you can place a lot of explosives in a luggage.
    and beyond a certain amount of explosives, the explosion will punch through anything “bomb proof”.

    but a person can only carry so much explosive on them when boarding.

    it can be done, but airlines will resist it, because of cost.
    so maybe there has to be an industry+gov collaboration.

  11. Avery says:

    this is what the filthy reptiles at Charlie Hebdo are mocking:

    ‘I’ve lost everything’: Families, friends of Sinai plane crash victims share grief

  12. denk says:

    mh370, mh17, flight 9268 all perished amidst a major nato arial war game.
    another *excercise* that went *live* ?

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