Skip to content

Donetsk Rebels and Russian Intelligence

July 19, 2014

As the world tries to answer the question of who exactly fired the missile that shot down Malaysian Airlines Flight 17, killing 298 innocent people, Moscow is doing its best to lie, obfuscate, shift blame, and evade responsibility. The Kremlin’s best-case scenario now is that local rebels in Ukraine’s Donetsk region who are under the operational control of Russian military intelligence (GRU), took it upon themselves to shoot down a passenger aircraft, using a Russian-supplied Buk (SA-11) anti-aircraft system, having mistaken it for an unarmed Ukrainian An-26 transport plane. The reality may be worse, and it will take time to establish the facts, particularly with Kremlin proxies obstructing the investigation, destroying evidence, hiding bodies, and acting as if the world is not watching this closely. The extent of Russian push-back suggests that Moscow has a great deal to hide.

Nevertheless, even if the shootdown was entirely the work of Donetsk locals, self-styled Cossacks with an itchy trigger finger and an excess of vodka, it bears noting that the pseudo-state there is in fact under the tight control of the Kremlin, in particular of its powerful intelligence agencies, what the Russians call the “special services.” The premier of the “Donetsk People’s Republic” (DNR) is Aleksandr Boroday, a Russian citizen who, Pravda reported back in 2002, is a member of the special services, specifically the powerful Federal Security Service (FSB).* Boroday was appointed an FSB major-general at the tender age of thirty-five. In the FSB, Boroday worked in the sensitive “political field” and has been tied to Russian nationalist causes. Right now he is busy keeping investigators away from the MH17 crash site.

The DNR’s “defense minister” is the shadowy Igor Girkin, AKA Strelkov, another Russian citizen who has been the subject of much media commentary, given his belligerent actions and obvious power in the Donetsk area. Although he is reported to have an FSB background, he is a GRU asset now, according to U.S. intelligence, and serves as the local coordinator of Kremlin-controlled militias. Strelkov was gloating online about the Boeing 777 shootdown, thinking his forces had destroyed a Ukrainian An-26, then quickly deleted his comments. The DNR individual caught by Ukrainian intelligence on tape discussing the shootdown with GRU superiors is Igor Bezler, another longtime GRU operative with a murky past. It is important to note that the intercept confirmed that Bezler is fully within the GRU chain of command, as is the whole DNR military.

To illustrate just how tightly controlled by the Kremlin the DNR actually is, a little over a week ago it relieved its deputy premier for security, a Ukrainian, and replaced him with Vladimir Antufeyev, another Russian from the special services. Antufeyev previously served as the head of security in the Russian-controlled territory of Transdnistria. Russian media have reported that Antufeyev was brought to the DNR to “restore order” and tamp down in-fighting among some of the rebel bands. It is known that Boroday, Strelkov, and Antufeyev all worked together on behalf of the Russian special services during the 1990s conflict in Transdnistria.

Regardless of who exactly fired the missile that killed 298 innocent people, and who issued the order to do so, the Donetsk pseudo-state is a wholly-owned Kremlin subsidiary, with its top-three “power ministries” all in the hands of Russian citizens who are longtime creatures of Moscow’s special services. The only law in the DNR is Putin’s, as exercised through GRU channels. As such, it is difficult to imagine anyone undertaking any important decision there without Kremlin approval and the go-ahead of Russian intelligence.

*It has recently been claimed that this article was a “joke” — some joke — but Boroday’s affiliation with the special services since the 1990s is admitted by the Russian media.

46 Comments
  1. mattw0699 permalink

    From several sources it appears that Russia is implicated in some form – directly or indirectly.

    Where do we go from here?

    I can’t imagine Putin backing off. If most of the world is pushing against Putin, then it would seem he will push back just as hard if not harder.

  2. Reblogged this on Public Secrets and commented:
    Something to keep in mind: the key leaders of the so-called “Donetsk rebels,” who shot down that Malaysian airliner, are all Russian intelligence operatives. This massacre may well have been an accident, but the fingerprints all over it are Moscow’s.

  3. the unutterable permalink

    slightly off topic,but how much would one of these buk missile systems cost?

    ps – as always a great read!

  4. Where do we go from here?

    Russia secures Donetsk formally, nominally to allow access to the crash site, because that is the only way order can be secured.

  5. This site definitely has all of the information I wanted concerning this subject and didn’t know who
    to ask.

  6. Samuel Burke permalink

    There are reports that could make you guys look as wrong as you were when you vehemently blamed Syria/Assad for using sarin gas. The time stamps on the recordings that were supposedly from the Eastern Ukrainian pro Russian rebels, claiming credit for firing the missile, has turned out to have been produced before the event actually occurred.

    And supposedly from within the IC there is this. We shall see.

    “Regarding the shoot-down of the Malaysian jetliner on Thursday, I’m told that some CIA analysts cite U.S. satellite reconnaissance photos suggesting that the anti-aircraft missile that brought down Flight 17 was fired by Ukrainian troops from a government battery”

    http://consortiumnews.com/2014/07/19/airline-horror-spurs-new-rush-to-judgment/

    • “I’m told…” — very impressive standard of evidence you’ve got there.

      • Samuel Burke permalink

        The Missiles of October should remain a movie.

      • Samuel Burke permalink

        You always have an interesting perspective, thanks for posting.

        Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he.
        proverbs 29:18

      • 4MK permalink

        lol with you on that

    • I’ve seen FSB disinformation at the Smolensk case, it’s the same here: you fabricate 10s of versions to catch more curious part of the population in contradicting narratives. One thing is different though, mainstream media will not remain silent about this case and this is what you’ve long hadn’t experienced. Your incompetence and hatred swallowed lives of 298 people. You will be stopped.

  7. All evidence and logic points to Russian rebels supported by Putin’s Russia.

  8. Paul permalink

    Doesn’t it ever make you wonder what keeps the world so stubbornly oblivious to these connections but ever so watchful to crazy conspiracy theories such as put forth by David Icke, Russia Today and the like?

  9. Fourth Floor permalink

    The situation is much more nuanced than that. Generalizations such as there being a single rebel group, single command-and-control structure and single backing from Russia is what makes spotting the overnight post-airliner fly-in experts from the people who actually understand this conflict and region.

    No mention of why Siversk fell? (It was because Girkin’s Russian based financial support was pulled and he was unable to pay his troops, who abandoned him), no mention of the government overthrow last week in Donetsk? Or that Girkin and Boroday resent each other, and the other rebel leaders hate them both to the extent that Girkin can’t leave his building and Boroday can’t leave the center of his own city.

    Most other rebel leaders believe these people to be fools, and one presciently said only a few weeks ago “they will bring us more trouble than the Ukrainians”.

    Alas, neither the vostok brigade or Girkin’s troops (since he has none left) shot down the airliner – and there is definitely no single Russian-backed and organized rebel movement with a centralized command-and-control structure.

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. XX Posting: Russian Intel and Donetsk “Rebels” | mrmeangenes
  2. There’s A Mountain Of Evidence Linking Russia To The Downing Of The Malaysia Airliner | Construction
  3. The Panic in Red Square | The War Room
  4. There’s A Mountain Of Evidence Linking Russia To The Downing Of The Malaysia Airliner | Bawlbuster
  5. Jordan Meyerowitz | There’s A Mountain Of Evidence Linking Russia To The Downing Of The Malaysia Airliner
  6. There's A Mountain Of Evidence Linking Russia To The Downing Of The Malaysia Airliner | News
  7. This Is What Panic In The Kremlin Looks Like | Business Insider
  8. http://20committee.com/2014/07/19/donetsk-rebels-and-russian-intelligence/ | Euromaidan In English
  9. Putin vows to cooperate as blame for MH17 crash piles on Russia-21.07.2014 Nr.197 Anul XV / Anul XXV - RadioMetafora.ro
  10. Die Panik auf dem Roten Platz | EUROMAIDAN PRESS | News and Opinion from Across Ukraine
  11. Russian media dissent from Kremlin lies about MH17 | The XX Committee
  12. Why The Russians Are Panicking Over Flight 17
  13. Evidence Linking Russia To The Downing Of The Malaysia Airliner ... | Aviation Blog
  14. There’s A Mountain Of Evidence Linking Russia To The Downing Of The Malaysia Airliner | Hihid News
  15. The New July Crisis | The XX Committee
  16. troika of Donetsk People’s Republic | vidzhaya
  17. Economic slavery is one of the greatest forms of tyranny | vidzhaya
  18. Ukrainasta, Venäjästä ja tulitauoista | Random thoughts
  19. On Ukraine, Russia, and untimely ceasefires | Random thoughts
  20. If Putin Invades Ukraine … | The XX Committee
  21. UPDATE: Ukrainian Intelligence on MH17 Shootdown | The XX Committee
  22. Stephen Cohen Disgraces Himself… Again | The Gerasites
  23. Stephen F. Cohen Disgraces Himself … Again | The Syrian Intifada
  24. Interview with a Madman | The XX Committee
  25. The Donstsk Rebels and Proxy Warfare | rmsmc's blog
  26. Vladimir Putin Has A Problem -
  27. Vieraskynä: Ukrainan tulitauko on Venäjän voitto | The Ulkopolitist

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 565 other followers

%d bloggers like this: