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Russian Military Plane Crashes After Take Off in Sochi
#1
I'm putting it here until there is more information and it may yet turn out to be just an old non maintained aircraft which crashed. Or it could be some thing else. 92 people killed. Including almost all of the Alexandrov Choir and other performers. On their way to Syria for a New Year concert. Very sad.

Quote:92 feared dead as Russian plane with military band crashes en route to Syria

Published time: 25 Dec, 2016 04:35Edited time: 25 Dec, 2016 12:38
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A rescue operation on the Black Sea coast at the crash site of Russian Defense Ministry's TU-154 aircraft © Nina Zotina / Sputnik


Rescue helicopters have discovered debris in the Black Sea from a Russian military transport plane which went off radar en route to Syria. Most of the passengers on the Tu-154 were members of the famous Alexandrov Ensemble army choir.
TrendsRussia's Tu-154 plane crash

LIVE UPDATES: Russian military plane with 91 on board disappears en route to Syria
According to preliminary reports, the Tupolev transport plane had 92 people on board, including 84 passengers and eight crew members. It went missing over the Black Sea at 2:40 GMT shortly after refueling at an airport near Sochi.
Most of the passengers on board were members of the Alexandrov Ensemble, the official choir of the Russian Armed Forces, the Russian Defense Ministry said. They were travelling from Moscow to the Russian military base Khmeimim near Latakia, Syria to take part in a Christmas celebration with troops deployed there. The head of the choir, conductor and composer Valery Khalilov, is among the 65 members of the ensemble presumed dead in the accident.
Crews from Channel One Russia, NTV, and Zvezda (the official media outlet of the Russian Defense Ministry), each with three members, were on board as well, the outlets confirmed.
The passenger list released by the defense ministry also includes Elizaveta Glinka, a prominent charity activist and humanitarian worker. She is best known by her blogger nickname "Doctor Liza." Some reports initially said she may have deplaned in Sochi, but the Presidential Council for Human Rights confirmed that she was on board.
Glinka was best known for aiding children with serious conditions like cancer, homeless people, and other vulnerable individuals. In the past few years, she organized humanitarian missions to conflict zones, including eastern Ukraine and Syria. For her efforts, she was awarded the Order of Friendship in 2012, the fifth highest state award in Russia.
Search operation near the coast of the Black Sea where a Russian Defense Ministry Tu-154 plane crashed shortly after take-off © Nina Zotina / Sputnik



Helicopters dispatched from Sochi to search for the aircraft have discovered the crash site, the ministry reported.
"Hull fragments of the Tu-154 plane operated by the Defense Ministry have been found about 1.5 km off the Black Sea coast of Sochi at a depth of 50-70 meters," the ministry said in a statement.
Around 3,000 people are involved in a search and rescue operation in the 10.5 square kilometer area, the defense ministry announced. The 24/7 operation is being conducted by 27 vessels with 37 divers on board, unmanned flying vehicles, and four helicopters, officials added.
So far, no survivors have been found in the sea, local rescue services told Interfax.
Russian President Vladimir Putin has been informed of the plane's crash, the Kremlin said.
At this point, it appears we did not receive data from the Russian Tu-154 that crashed after departure from Sochi.
Flightradar24 (@flightradar24) December 25, 2016
TASS reports that weather conditions in the regions were "favorable" to aviation. No civilian flights have been cancelled yet.
The Tupolev Tu-154 is a three-engine medium-range transport plane designed in the 1960s. It is capable of carrying up to 180 passengers, depending on the version. There are about 50 aircraft of this type remaining in operation throughout the world, with the Russian Air Force having the biggest fleet.
The plane that crashed near Sochi was a Tu-154B-2 with registration number RA-85572. The passenger capacity was boosted to 180. The aircraft has been in service since 1983, according to the online registry russianplanes.net. The defense ministry said the plane spent 6,689 hours in flight.
Over the decades, there have been around four dozen fatal incidents involving the aircraft, most of which were due to pilot error or improper maintenance. One of the most widely publicized crashes happened in 2010 near Smolensk, Russia, when a Tu-154M of the Polish Air Force carrying Polish President Lech Kaczynski and his entourage crashed in foggy weather, killing all 96 people on board.



https://www.rt.com/news/371623-russian-t...rs-radars/
"The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways. The point, however, is to change it." Karl Marx

"He would, wouldn't he?" Mandy Rice-Davies. When asked in court whether she knew that Lord Astor had denied having sex with her.

“I think it would be a good idea” Ghandi, when asked about Western Civilisation.
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#2
The disaster of the Russian military Tu-154 a few short first thoughts

The Saker

December 25, 2016

http://thesaker.is/the-disaster-of-the-r...-thoughts/

It is too early to conclude what happened with this aircraft, but since I have been asked about that by email, here are my own, personal and provisional, thoughts:
  • Mechanical failure: unlikely. The Tu-154 is a three engine aircraft and an extremely strong beast. It's safety record is comparable to most aircraft of its time, even though it was often used in extreme conditions other aircraft types did not have to operate in. The Tu-154 had already taken enough altitude to attempt a return to base or even a water landing. The weather that day was good. Besides, the crew did not communicate any problem. Thus the disaster had to be instantaneous.
  • Fuel problem: unlikely. Fuel problems are always a prime suspect when a crash occurs, but even if the engines had suddenly experienced problems or even a full shutdown, the pilots would have had the time to report this. Also, like any other aircraft, the Tu-154 can glide and maneuver without power.
  • Bird strike: unlikely. I am not even sure that there have ever been a triple engine failure due to a bird strike but even if there has been, they crew could have reported it which it did not. And, again, the case of US Airways flight 1549 has shown that even a catastrophic birdstrike does not prevent a fully loaded airliner from attempting to land.
  • Pilot error: highly unlikely. The guys flying this aircraft where extremely experienced and while human error is always possible, it mostly results in situation were it can be reported. The Tu-154 was a very complex aircraft to operate and it had its weaknesses but these were all very well known to the Russian crews and this crew was a very experienced one.
  • Missile: unlikely. The Tu-154 has three engines including one mounted over the top of the rear of the fuselage and a MANPAD type missile warhead does not have the kind of blast radius capable of taking out all three of them. As for bigger missiles, the Black Sea coasts of Russia is very tightly controlled by the Russian military and security services (as is the entire Black Sea) and to get that close to the city of Sochi would be risky and difficult.
  • Sabotage/bomb: most likely simply because all other causes are even less likely. True, this was a military aircraft with, supposedly, good security. Alas, I can confirm from personal experience that if you look Russian and speak Russian like a native and if you act the right way, military security in Russia is nowhere near as good as it should be. However, if you speak with an accent or look foreign, and that includes speaking with a Caucasian accent or looking like somebody from the Caucasus, you would have a much harder time beating the controls.

For all these reasons and even though it is way too early to speculate, my of preferred hypothesis is that it was a terrorist act executed by Ukrainian operatives. I hope that I am wrong and that I will be proven wrong in the next 24 hours but at this point in time, this appears to me as the most likely scenario.

One more thing: this tragedy really breaks my heart. Not only did the entire Alexandrov Ensemble perish, but two amazing personalities were on board: Valerii Khalikolv and "Dr Liza". There are no words to express the loss which the death of all these people represents for Russia. This is why I hope and pray that in spite of why first reaction outlined above, this is not a Ukrainian terrorist attack because if it is, the consequences will be very severe. We should know more very soon.
"There are three sorts of conspiracy: by the people who complain, by the people who write, by the people who take action. There is nothing to fear from the first group, the two others are more dangerous; but the police have to be part of all three,"

Joseph Fouche
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#3
Brief, intense flash caught by webcams on Sochi shoreline:

[video=youtube_share;k-K52HANHZE]http://youtu.be/k-K52HANHZE[/video]

A second camera:

[video=youtube_share;VE2BRieTgr8]http://youtu.be/VE2BRieTgr8[/video]

Communications between ground control and pilot:

[video=youtube_share;o3l0e-EcqTQ]http://youtu.be/o3l0e-EcqTQ[/video]

Published on Dec 25, 2016

Julia Samodurov, a 32-year-old employee of the center of the Black Sea air traffic control, was the last one to speak with the commander of the crew.
"There are three sorts of conspiracy: by the people who complain, by the people who write, by the people who take action. There is nothing to fear from the first group, the two others are more dangerous; but the police have to be part of all three,"

Joseph Fouche
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#4
It's a nice Christmas present to Obama, et. al.
"We'll know our disinformation campaign is complete when everything the American public believes is false." --William J. Casey, D.C.I

"We will lead every revolution against us." --Theodore Herzl
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#5
The wide debris field and the very sudden disappearance of the plane without distress call speaks of a big explosion - which most probably was a bomb, although there is a very small chance of something other. The video of the flash, if that is the correct direction and time, would also lend more evidence of an explosion. I just hope this doesn't lead to war or ugly reprisals. The jump to it likely being Ukranians is a bit of a leap, IMHO. There are many others, both within Russia and without, who could do something like this, sadly. As the water is not very deep here, I'm sure in a few days the full story should be known....duck and cover if it was a US-instigated [official or rogue] terror false-flag [no-flag] op!
"Let me issue and control a nation's money and I care not who writes the laws. - Mayer Rothschild
"Civil disobedience is not our problem. Our problem is civil obedience! People are obedient in the face of poverty, starvation, stupidity, war, and cruelty. Our problem is that grand thieves are running the country. That's our problem!" - Howard Zinn
"If there is no struggle there is no progress. Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and never will" - Frederick Douglass
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#6
Russia Today reports it wasn't terrorism.
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#7
Fine. But what was it then? Experienced pilot. Full tank. Just a couple of kilometres from take off. Light/explosion seen in sky. Not deep water. Wide recovery area. It seems the authorities are wanting to play this very quiet indeed.
"The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways. The point, however, is to change it." Karl Marx

"He would, wouldn't he?" Mandy Rice-Davies. When asked in court whether she knew that Lord Astor had denied having sex with her.

“I think it would be a good idea” Ghandi, when asked about Western Civilisation.
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#8
Magda Hassan Wrote:Fine. But what was it then? Experienced pilot. Full tank. Just a couple of kilometres from take off. Light/explosion seen in sky. Not deep water. Wide recovery area. It seems the authorities are wanting to play this very quiet indeed.

If it was murder, I am convinced Russia will not admit it, since it would require the state to do something about it.
"We'll know our disinformation campaign is complete when everything the American public believes is false." --William J. Casey, D.C.I

"We will lead every revolution against us." --Theodore Herzl
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#9
Lauren Johnson Wrote:
Magda Hassan Wrote:Fine. But what was it then? Experienced pilot. Full tank. Just a couple of kilometres from take off. Light/explosion seen in sky. Not deep water. Wide recovery area. It seems the authorities are wanting to play this very quiet indeed.

If it was murder, I am convinced Russia will not admit it, since it would require the state to do something about it.

These were military entertainers with the Russian military probably providing security. A culture of strict accountability, no doubt, which has its pros and cons in terms of organizational efficacy. One of the cons is a heightened incentive to ass cover and deny fault. If that isn't the reason, perhaps there are overriding diplomatic considerations.
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Don't like the Presidential choices? You can still support a write-in protest campaign in several states. See @JLK32387 on Twitter.
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#10
John Knoble Wrote:Russia Today reports it wasn't terrorism.

This only seems to be reluctance to admit that a military plane leaving from a military area of an airfield might have had a security breech. I'm sure if they are forced to by the circumstances, they will find a face-saving way to admit to this and deal with it. The US and other countries often do the same when a military flight is involved.
"Let me issue and control a nation's money and I care not who writes the laws. - Mayer Rothschild
"Civil disobedience is not our problem. Our problem is civil obedience! People are obedient in the face of poverty, starvation, stupidity, war, and cruelty. Our problem is that grand thieves are running the country. That's our problem!" - Howard Zinn
"If there is no struggle there is no progress. Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and never will" - Frederick Douglass
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