Op-Ed: No basis for tolerance — MH17 bodies looted, missiles hidden

Posted Jul 20, 2014 by Paul Wallis
The bodies of the passengers of MH17 are rotting peacefully in the sun and their credit cards stolen, while the world dithers with diplomacy. Forensic examination of the site is being corrupted by the Ukrainian “rebels.”
A pro-Russia militant shows others a stuffed animal at the site of the crash of the Malaysian airlin...
A pro-Russia militant shows others a stuffed animal at the site of the crash of the Malaysian airliner in east Ukraine, on July 18, 2014
Dominique Faget, AFP
This is a crime against humanity. There are no grounds for patience.
Huffington Post describes the current state of the atrocity:
Treatment of the victims' remains, left in the open air under a hot summer sun punctuated by bursts of rain, provoked outrage and distress.
"The news we got today of the bodies being dragged around, of the site not being treated properly, has really created a shock in the Netherlands," Dutch Foreign Minister Frans Timmermans told the Ukrainian president in Kiev.
The U.S. State Department said it was deeply concerned that the separatists' had refused to allow monitors safe and unfettered access to the crash site. Spokeswoman Jen Psaki said the monitors were allowed 75 minutes at the site Friday and less than three hours Saturday. She said noted e reports about bodies being removed, debris taken away, and potential evidence tampered with.The location of the black boxes remains a mystery, and the separatist leadership insisted Saturday that it had not located them.
Reports that credit cards have been looted from the victims of Malaysia Airlines MH17 have prompted Dutch banks to take “preventative measures” against possible fraud, the Dutch Banking Association said in a statement Saturday. International outrage has erupted over the treatment of the bodies and evidence in the 16-square-mile debris field of the plane that was shot down over contested Ukraine airspace Thursday.
Alexander Borodai, the prime minister of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic, said Saturday that local residents may have used the credit cards of the victims. The victims’ next of kin will be reimbursed for any credit card “abuse,” according to the Dutch Banking Association. Of the 298 passengers who perished aboard MH17, 193 were Dutch.
Meanwhile, some unconfirmed indications of the movement of the SAM missiles which shot down the plane have been found. The missiles have allegedly been moved to Russia.
Malaysia Airlines MH17
Malaysia Airlines MH17
Adrian Leung/John Saeki, AFP
When it’s so easy to turn a blind eye to criticism
International anger doesn’t seem to be making much headway. In Australia, our reputation for “nice” hasn’t done us much good talking to the Russians. 28 Australians (according to our figures) died in the MH17 atrocity, and President Putin’s attendance at the G20 meeting later this year is up in the air.
That’s the diplomatic position as far as we’re concerned, and the rest of the world, notably Washington, doesn’t seem to be doing much better. The sheer impotence of world opinion, once again, has failed to achieve anything.
When families die
Now let’s talk about this issue on a people-to-people basis:
The expectation is that the responsible parties on the ground will treat the dead with due respect, and that those bodies will be returned ASAP, without further tantrums from anyone, including Russia.
The world knows the Ukraine has problems and that there are sensitivities involved.
At this point, nobody cares.
When someone kills your family, you don’t “negotiate.” Nor do you forgive.
Who are these damn animals, to destroy so many lives, simply because they could? Of all places on Earth, Ukraine and Russia know what war means. Both nations lost whole generations of killed and maimed in the Second World War, and they don’t get that?
If someone killed 298 Russians or Ukrainians, what would Russia and the Ukraine expect to happen? Excuses? Or results? Would they be so blasé if it was their own people being massacred for no particular reason?
This issue is not negotiable. It’s not forgivable.
So let’s see someone acting rationally:
1. Allow those investigators onsite, now.
2. Get those damn cowardly ghouls away from those people, now.
3. Arrest the vermin responsible for shooting down that plane- By rights, they should be exterminated and the responsible parties should get a strong dose of their own medicine, but let’s stick to the politic approach for now.
4. Return those bodies to their families and be quick about it.
5. Do not even think about mitigating circumstances- There aren’t any. This was deliberate murder, pure and simple.
The expectation is that all parties on the ground will act like civilized people. No further delays are acceptable.
For those who may never want to eat again, some images of the site have emerged. Just remember — these people could have been anyone. Maybe even terrorists can understand that. War is not a joke.