Whatever caused Flight 752 to crash just after takeoff from Tehran, the 176 people who died were quickly drafted as elements in a propaganda narrative targeting both Iran, Russia and US President Donald Trump.
The Ukraine International Airlines (UIA) Boeing 737 took off from Imam Khomeini International Airport in Tehran on Wednesday morning. It was bound for Kiev, amid rising tensions over the Iranian missile strikes against US targets inside Iraq. The nine crew members and 167 passengers on board, including 15 children, may have complained that the flight was running almost an hour late. Within seven minutes, they would all be dead.
Initial reports spoke of “technical problems” as the cause. By Thursday morning, however, the narrative was shifting: US officials were “confident that Iran shot down a Ukrainian jetliner,” CBS reported citing anonymous sources.
AP qualified the speculation as “highly likely,” a weasel phrase made notorious by the official UK narrative of the 2018 Salisbury “novichok poisonings.”
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