Ukraine - Who shot down MH-17? Interview with a crew member from the BUK missile regiment having the launcher № "312"

(video is posted here. It is in Russian without English subtitles. English translation by M. Stewart.

FULL TRANSCRIPT – Anatoly Sharij interview with former BUK 312 crew member Posted Ded 17, 2014

Anatoly Sharij: You may still remember the BUK which photo was
published by the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) as a Russian one. You
may also remember me dwelling on it. I received a lot of feedback
saying I was lying etc. Here’s an interview with Ukrainian contract
sergeant crossing “t’s” and dotting “i’s”.
Anatoly Sharij (AS): Good afternoon.

A: Good afternoon. Good to be talking to you. I have been watching
your videos for quite some time now, and I have to say you do uncover
the truth.
I am 23, and I have been in contract service with the Ukrainian army.
Last summer the contract term came to an end, but I was not dismissed
from service for reasons well known to you. My duty station was the
exact BUK self-propelled fire installation (Russian abbreviation
transliterated as SOU – translator) number 312 you made your video
about, I happened to recently come across it on the Internet.

The SOU has 4 crewmembers: service commander, me as deputy commander,
driver and operator. This SOU 312 you made your video about was
dislocated in Lugansk and your video shows it being relocated to
Kramatorsk. Donetsk has a surface-to-air missile regiment having these
BUK M1 on the inventory. The regiment consists of three divisions:
(1) in Avdeevka

(2) in Mariupol

(3) in Lugansk

This is how you decipher 312:

3 stands for the third (Lugansk) division,

1 stands for the battery number, ours was no. 1,

2 stands for one of the 2. service units in each battery, ours was no. 2.

BUK is a complex of 4 specialized military vehicles: command post,
mobile target detection and assignment station, loading and starting
station, self-propelled fire installation.
At the time the Boeing was downed I was out of army already, so I
can’t say anything about it, but when it all began in the Crimea, this
capture of military units, we’ve been ordered to leave our permanent
disposition in Lugansk.
AS: This BUK 312 was said to be a Russian missile launcher.

A: No. This BUK is 100% Ukrainian one. The photo I sent you, the one
with Yubileynaya mines on the background, has been made in Lugansk.
Our military unit was dislocated in Metallist settlement, on the
upland near Lugansk, and this is the view from there. It made us all
laugh, the way SBU presented this as BUK of the rebels or Russian BUK.
AS: What do you think about this BUK downing the Malaysian Boeing?

A: No clue. By the time it happened I was transferred to Avdeevka
division. I only heard SBU [Ukraine secret police] say this particular
missile launcher with board number 312 downed the Boeing. All I know it
couldn’t have done this. I spoke with my ex-comrades in arms and they
said they didn’t do it.
The first relocation of our Lugansk division was to Kramatorsk
military airdrome. We’ve been allocated barracks there. In a month we’
ve been moved into the fields in Dnepropetrovskaya Oblast, Novaya
Grigorievka village.
The photo you showed in one of your videos, the bad quality one
(5’50”) was taken when our SOU commander decided to drive it, but the
electric wiring inside the SOU ignited. The missiles nearly exploded,
but luckily firefighters came on time to put the fire down. That’s why
it was moved on the low-base semi-trailer as seen in the picture.
Let me tell you some about the Ukrainian army. While in the fields,
the officers were boozing heavily, while soldiers and sergeants were not
allowed to go to the nearby shop. I was actually planning to quit after
my first contract term, but they wouldn’t let me. Being a straight
shooter, I was outraged at this, so they started to pressure me, pitted
other soldiers against me. The situation in general was very depressing,
people kept deserting, many went over to the rebels, I, too, went to
the hospital in Kharkov and just didn’t come back. The border is close
AS: What do you think was the purpose of using BUK at all in the combat area?

A: I don’t know. Initially this withdrawal may have been done to
avoid BUK capture. Then, I suppose, this may have been due to shortage
of manpower on the front…
AS: Strange….

A: But this is

A: But this is my guess only, for even officers didn’t know it, so it
seemed, may be only commanding officer and chief of staff knew the
reason. I am still unaware why would they want to do this, for BUK air
missile launchers are deployed against airborne targets, the rebels have
no aviation, so we are useless for ATO [“anti terrorist operation[
purposes. They did move some people from our division to ATO, a major
general came to talk to those who were unwilling to take part in this
campaign, I said I don’t want to go as I see no sense in it, besides, I
already served my term, so I was transferred 80 kilometres away, to
Vasilkovka village, to where 1st Avdeevka BUK division was.
When we left Lugansk, only three unusable complexes remained there,
and those which did leave Lugansk, also broke down right after leaving
the city, some were repaired en route, others were transported on
low-base semi-trailers. Those which were left in Lugansk, lacked whole
equipment units.
AS: but one must be able to use these…

A: So far as I could gather they do have professionals there. My
friends in Lugansk when passing the military unit saw through the fence
rebels trying to repair the complexes.
AS: What’s your opinion as a professional, who may have downed the Boeing?

A: Judging by firing zone, Ukrainian army did it.

AS: And the purpose?

A: No idea. I only know the kind of professionals they are, it could have happened unintentionally.

AS: What do you mean, unintentionally? They should have been given
coordinates, the height, the speed of the target etc., it isn’t just a
matter of pressing a button, is it?
A: Exactly. There’s a friend or foe comms exchange between the
complex units, so you are right, it couldn’t have happened accidentally.
AS: Why firing at all then? They couldn’t have thought it was the rebels jet fighter, right?

A: I agree.

In general Ukrainian army lacks qualified manpower badly, many people
just left the army, my friends are in Moscow, Novosibirsk, Rostov,

One can’t get dismissed from service no matter what he does. If you
abstain from entry on duty or, say, curse everyone, you won’t be
dismissed. Many people just desert the army.
AS: And how are they accounted for? As missing?

A: It’s a mystery to me. But we had 15 sergeants and now only three
are left, all of them are in ATO zone. They used to send some people to
ATO from all our divisions before, now one of the divisions in full is
there. I can’t make out why would they want BUK divisions there, rebels
still don’t have jet fighters. It must really be shortage of soldiers,
you have a video on rioting conscripts having exceeded their term of
service by 8 months.
AS: Yeah, they have all been labeled Kremlin spies when they raised
this issue with their commanders. A real Ukrainian should be willing to
serve in the army for 2, 3, 5 years…
A: …for 154 hrivnyas a month…

I am not scared of anything and I have nothing to conceal.

Wish you new uncovering videos!

END of transcript