Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Tehran’s Admission It Shot Down Plane Highlights Moscow’s Inability to Do So, Illarionov Says

Paul Goble

            Staunton, January 12 – Tehran’s rapid acknowledgement that it shot down a Ukrainian jetliner by mistake and its expression of sympathy to the families of the victims stands in sharp contrast with Soviet and Russian behavior in analogous situations and highlights the differences between Moscow and the world regarding human life, Andrey Illarionov says.

            The Iranian foreign minister and Iranian President Hasan Rouhani both said that the shooting down was “a mistake” and that those responsible would be brought to justice. Leaders of most countries which have made similar errors, like the US in the case of the 1988 shooting down of an Iranian aircraft, have done the same (

            But now Moscow under the Soviets or now. The Soviet government refused to acknowledge its role in shooting down the KAL jet in September 1983 for seven years, and only in December 1990 did Mikhail Gorbachev admit Moscow’s culpability. And it has never acknowledged its role in shooting down a Kaleva flight between Helsinki and Tallinn in 1940.

            Not, has it been willing to admit its role in the shooting down of the Amsterdam-Kuala Lumpur jet over Ukraine in 2014, preferring instead to deny everything and blame others rather than take responsibility and move on as even Iran is now doing, the Russian commentator continues.

            “Precisely in this, in attitudes toward people, falsehoods, banal cowardice, and general nastiness, the former Soviet and the current [Russian] Kremlin distinguishes itself from the leaders of other countries of the contemporary world, including Iran” whom most view as most at odds with the international community.

            The facts are that it is Moscow not Tehran that is the odd man out.

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