Here’s a test of how well you know Russia.
A Russian plane was shot down accidentally. By Russian allies. Using a Russian SAM. Who’s to blame?
Here’s your multiple choice of answers: a) The IL-20 crew whose plane had no business in those skies, b) Russia’s Syrian allies, whose handling of the Russian S-20 SAM showed neither composure nor the requisite technical skill, c) Russia, which supplied deadly weapons without training her backward allies how to use them properly, d) none of the above.
If you answered d), congratulations. You already know that Russia is never to blame for her woes, big or small.
If there have been continuous food shortages of various severity, it’s bad weather over the last 100 years that’s to blame.
If Russia has always been bossed by tyrants, and since 1917 by ghoulish ones, it’s the fault of the West, consistently united in its hatred of Russia.
If Russia murders 60 million of her citizens, the fault lies with the intolerable pressure exerted by the Russophobic West.
If Russia starts the Second World War as Hitler’s ally, it’s the fault of Britain and France that threatened to join forces with Hitler against Russia.
If Russian tanks smash popular uprisings in Poland, East Germany, Hungary and Czechoslovakia, it’s to preempt America’s threat to occupy those countries.
If Russia pounces on the Ukraine, ditto.
If Russia always finds herself close to the bottom of every study rating countries for things like corruption, free speech and the rule of law, the fault lies with the authors of the studies who all suffer from psychotic Russophobia.
If most Russians live in penury while the ruling gang amasses offshore billions, it’s Western sanctions that are to blame. And the same destitution before the sanctions went into effect? Shut up, you Russophobe you.
In short, whenever the matter of culpability arises in anything involving Russia, the answer is always the same: anyone other than the Russians.
Now you’ve passed the first part of your Russian knowledge test, see if you can cope with the second one.
The question is: if not Russia, who? Who’s to blame for the deaths of the 15 crewmen aboard the downed Il-20 surveillance plane?
If you know Russia as well as I think you do, there’s only one possible answer: the Jews. At base, all Russia’s troubles are directly or indirectly attributable to the Jews.
They may not be always described as such for appearances’ sake. They may be euphemistically called sharks of Wall Street, capitalists, Zionists or, as in this case, Israelis. But every Russian knows in his heart who lurks behind the euphemisms.
To be fair, it took the Russians an hour or two to start milking that traditional scapegoat. At first, their Ministry of Defence issued a patently ridiculous statement about a French frigate that had supposedly fired a rocket in the same general area.
The French screamed fake news, and the Russians hastily retreated to their trusted fall-back position. It’s the Israelis what done it. The Jews.
You see, the Jews, aka Israelis, had four F-16 fighters flying low-altitude bombing runs over Latakia, a port controlled by Russia’s Syrian allies. At supposedly the same time, the Russian IL-20 was three miles up in the sky spying on NATO communications.
Syrian SAM crews tried to repel the Israeli attack by firing chaotically at everything that flew, displaying the combination of marksmanship, composure and technical mastery for which modern Arab warriors are so justly famous.
The devious Jews, aka Israelis, took advantage of the situation and used the IL as cover, cowering behind it like kidnappers using hostages as a human shield.
That’s how Sergei Shoigu, the Russian defence minister, read the situation. Hence he immediately rang his Israeli counterpart and informed him that Russia held Israel “wholly responsible”. “We reserve the right to further countermeasures,” added the irate minister.
A member of the Duma’s defence committee then suggested that the countermeasures might include bombing Israeli air bases, for starters.
The words ‘final solution’ weren’t used, but Israelis’ ears are finely attuned to even the slightest echoes. Fearing a Russian strike, Binyamin Netanyahu rang the Botox Boy and explained the facts of the matter.
Vlad then magnanimously accepted that the incident wasn’t Israel’s fault, just one of those things, a “chain of tragic circumstances”. After all, allowed the Botox Boy, “an Israeli plane did not shoot down our plane.”
True, it didn’t. And if you cast another look at the test above, you’ll see who did, and with what.
In fact, by the time the incident occurred the Israeli F-16s had finished their sortie and returned to base.
But even had they still been in the area, Shoigu didn’t explain how fighters on a nap-of-the-earth raid could have possibly shielded themselves with an aircraft flying at an altitude of three miles.
Of course, Jewish deviousness explains it, but not entirely.
What does explain it entirely is that both the Americans and the Russians have acted irresponsibly in and over Syria, turning the world into a power keg sitting next to a camp fire.
The American irresponsibility goes back 15 years; the Russian contribution is much more recent.
By attacking Iraq in 2003, the Americans set in train a chain of events that have made a looming global catastrophe visible even to a naked eye. The removal of the rulers falling short of the gold standards of US democracy has plunged the area into a bloody chaos that has already cost a million lives – and counting.
(The arrival of hordes of migrants in Europe is the collateral damage, whose full extent is yet to be made clear.)
The next irresponsible act was inviting Russia to join in the fun, supposedly to help NATO fight terrorism. Considering that Russia is the world’s principal sponsor of that activity, that was like asking a poisoner for the antidote.
Russia in her turn has fomented trouble against Western interests wherever such interests manifested themselves. As part of that madcap crusade, the Russians have prolonged and worsened conflicts by putting twentieth-century weapons in the hands of eighth-century fanatics.
The SS-200 SAM system is one such weapon. Developed in the 1980s, it’s the father of the SS-300 and the grandfather of the SS-400.
By today’s standards the SS-200 is out of date, but it does have an electronic ‘identify friend or foe’ system designed to avoid such accidents. The Syrians should have received a signal that the Russian aircraft was ‘friendly’ and held their fire.
However, the Syrians either had switched the system off or simply ignored the signal in the heat of the moment. Up went the missile, down came the plane.
Tragic though the incident is, it’s nothing as compared to numerous other, cataclysmic possibilities. I’ll leave them to your imagination – provided you don’t blame it all on the Jews.