Wanting to know more about the PS752 flight allegedly losing its own ASD-B /GPS signal and leaving the civilian air corridor by some metres and being unable to identify itself, I was on some pilot forum looking for information. On the pilot forum there was discussion of how there was an Iranian commando base just 4 miles NE of the flight path; PS752 seemed to be assigned to PAROT 2, the SID when flying out of IKA. The plane just before being shot had for some reason turned back towards the airport. Crash site: 35°33’42.71″N 51°6’11.98″E.
The pilot forum says one “Babak Taghvaee” got it right from the beginning, even had the photos of the missile head etc. Before the formal admission came from the Iran military. In fact Babak’s twitter feed claims he forced the admission from the Iranian military. On January 7, the FAA already banned US airlines from flying through Iran’s airspace and most airlines were rerouting flights away from Iran/Iraq airspace even if it meant higher fuel costs. There were lots of articles on that. Iran’s air defenses immediately after their missile attack on US bases in Iraq were on a state of high alert, similar to 9/11 following the planes hitting the Pentagon and Twin Towers. They were expecting a US reprisal and their chain of command was in a decentralized defensive mode.
And yet there’s this Ukrainian airliner just flying around at such an odd time so close to a sensitive military installation. The plane seems to have turned back towards the airport (as was also reported on RT) And the communications just jammed, either those of the plane and/or Iranian defense systems. What was so urgent that the flight could not be cancelled? It had already been delayed by an hour and IKA could not have been a bustling airport that night.
So I check Babak’s twitter expecting some apolitical, nerdy technical airplane guy and:
1. He knows about airplanes. For the last six years he specifically knows about Ukrainian airplanes. He just happens to have a book coming out on the Ukrainian airforce. His pinned tweet: “After 6 years of effort, finally my book about history & current fate of #Ukrainian Air Force as well as its role in the war against pro-#Russia separatists in #Donbass is ready. “Guardians of the #Ukraine” will be published in #UK on 16 September 2019.”
2. He is one of the first to be interviewed by Western media, e.g. the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, explaining why it was a missile, etc. etc. At least his voice is.
3. His own twitter claims: “During his press conference, #Hajizadeh, commander of #IRGC|ASF said that their Tor-M1 operators had requested #Iran Civil Aviation Org. (#ICAO) to cancel all commercial flights over #Tehran because they had reports about incoming #US cruise missiles but #ICAO refused!”
4. On January 7, the US had banned its airlines from flying over Iran after the attack on the US bases. Is it true that ICAO refused Iran permission to close its airspace to commercial flights? This shooting of the plane occurred only a few hours after of the attack on the US base in Iraq when the Iranian military was on high alert. Why on earth would Ukraine International AIrlines not cancel their flight from the night? Why was it given an SID so close to anything remotely sensitive, that might be attacked by the US? What on earth was so urgent that the flight had to depart that night?
5. But, as his Twitter reveals, our man Babak is not only an “aerospace engineer”. Quite literally, as I am looking at his twitter account, he is streaming a series of very detailed updates on the protests in Iran, protests which allegedly are demanding regime change specifically because of the Iranian military accidentally shooting down the Ukrainian passenger plane. Despite Iran’s government having taken full responsibility.
(6. I don’t remember Iranians demanding Bush be regime-changed when Iran Air 655 was shot down in 1988. William Rogers got a Legion of Merit for that. It took the US 4 years to admit to the mistake).
7. Babak’s twitter is providing extraordinary in depth real time coverage of the protests for regime change in Iran instigated by the accidental shooting down of the Ukrainian plane….he’s tweeting away about the “arrest” and release of the UK ambassador (which I understood to be a questioning only) and the brutal treatment of protesters by the Iranian police force, complete with graphic images. It’s rather a lot for one man to be doing. And in fact he is angry on his Twitter feed that people have questioned whether he is just one man, whether he exists….
8. CBC refers to him as an “aerospace / defense analyst”. His Medium bio says he’s an ex-aircraft technician. And a contributor to BBCPersian.
As Mercouris said in a podcast due to sanctions etc. there are now fewer airlines flying out of Iran right now, but on such a tense night they could’t cancel or delay flights for a few hours??? The attack on US airbases took place on 8 January 2020 (UTC+03:00). Flight 752 was scheduled to take off at 05:15 local time (UTC+3:30), but was delayed. It departed Stand 116 and took off from Runway 29R at 06:12:47 local time. The final ADS-B data received was at 06:14:45, less than two minutes after departure. So literally, Ukraine allows it’s commercial planes to fly through an active war zone while the Iranian military is on very high alert with the chain of command decentralized and operators having authority to shoot withoutr requesting permission.
Mercouris said he didn’t expect too many political consequences from this shooting down. But right as Babak is tweeting his real time updates, the US/UK headlines are all about the protests all over Iran demanding regime change because of the shooting down of the plane.
So here we have some Iranian aerospace defense analyst who just happened to get photos of the missile head that hit the Ukrainian airplane. He just happens to be funneling info to pilot forums along with information about the flight path of PS752 before the Iranian military admitted anything. Once the Iranian military admits to shooting down planes he pops up on Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) and other news channels to explain the situation to everyone. Then as the US/UK media are spinning out headlines about protests against the Iranian regime due to the shooting down of the plane our man Babak turns out to totally pro Iranian regime change, and he is sending out very detailed live updates and video as “protests” unfold in Iran following the admission by the Iranian government.
The plane shot down just happens to be Ukrainian. While everyone else is cancelling flights out of and over Iran at least for a few hours, our man Babak just happens over the last six years to have been writing a book on the heroic Ukrainian airforce standing up to Russia. That has been SIX years in the making, coinciding rather neatly with the 2014 Ukrainian revolution. CBC claims they reached him in Cologne, Germany. His twitter says he is based in Valletta. He seems to have good connections to CBC, BBC. He is posting on pilot forums before the Iran military admits anything. He also seems to have tons of videos in real time about all the protests in Iran.
Babak Taghvaee is the Everywhere Man.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.