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Australian PM Tony Abbott is Somebody's Patsy

A textbook case of political buffoonery

The author is an Irish journalist who also blogs about Russia.


Russian President Vladimir Putin should "apologize" and consider paying compensation to the families of the victims of flight MH17.

That's according to Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott who confronted the Russian leader at the APEC summit in Beijing this week.

Making his suggestion, Abbott referred to the accidental shooting down of an Iranian passenger jet by the United States Navy in 1988, saying the U.S. had since "duly apologized and made appropriate restitution" in that case.

But unfortunately for Abbott, his version of events doesn't quite match up with reality.

The United States did not apologize for shooting down Iran Air Flight 655 on July 3rd, 1988 -- and it took eight years for the eventual compensation to be paid.

Apologies were of course called for at the time, but they never came. Instead what the victims’ families got was this response from then Vice President George H.W. Bush:

"I will never apologize for the United States -- I don't care what the facts are. I'm not an apologize for America kind of guy".

The U.S. military at the time defended the action, maintaining that the captain of the USS Vincennes "acted reasonably and did what his nation expected of him" given that the passenger jet was thought to be an enemy plane.

Iran, however, said the U.S. acted negligently.

Still, it's unclear why Abbott feels there is any direct comparison to be made with the Iran Air incident and flight MH17, given that there was undeniable proof that the Iranian flight was in fact shot down by the American military.

Who shot down MH17 has in no way been fully established, as Abbott very well knows, and it is deviously deceptive on his part to run around like a wet hen demanding apologies. It is crude slander in a very blatant form.

This is particularly true given that all evidence to suggest the plane could have been shot down by someone other than the pro-Russian militia has been utterly ignored by the media.

By prancing around suggesting there has been a clear establishment of facts, Abbott reveals himself merely to be a patsy for US intelligence.

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