Conspiracy courtesy of the GRU

Too entertaining not to share, mostly because it's just within the boundary of what's plausible: why we haven't seen much of US Foreign Secretary Hillary Clinton recently.

Within minutes of leaving Bahrain airspace, this report says, the C-12 Huron carrying Secretary Clinton and her US Navy Seal [sic] protectors, "without notice," deviated from their assigned flight path heading, instead, directly towards Iran's Ahwaz International Airport where, coincidentally, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad had previously landed on an "unscheduled" visit.
Upon the C-12 Huron landing at Ahwaz, however, this report says it encountered "extreme turbulence" causing it to leave the runway where its main landing gear then collapsed causing it to crash.
The article quotes the Kremlin's GRU (Glavnoye Razvedyvatel'noye Upravleniye a.k.a. Foreign Military Intelligence) as the source. Obviously there's no possible motive for them to exaggerate...

At least some of the facts are verifiable: Clinton has indeed been out of the public eye for several weeks, and the cause is quoted as concussion after fainting at home, some time in the week leading up to December 16th. The SEAL commander suicide is quoted as happening on Saturday December 22nd though, which is a rather big time gap. The Army alone has 112 C-12 Huron craft so concealing the loss of one is at least plausible.

The main points that jar, though: why would a SEAL unit commander be on diplomatic protection duty, even for Hillary Clinton? Protection work is a young man's game, and Commander Price was 42. Why indeed would you need a SEAL unit? If you're deliberately landing an aircraft in Iran at a commercial airport and the Iranian military are expecting you, then if things go wrong you are already so deep in the yoghurt that even SEALs aren't going to help you. And what would Clinton hope to achieve with a covert meeting that would not be possible with an overt meeting? It's the job of a Foreign Secretary to go around the world and meet dubious people; no-one would have batted an eyelid if the existence of the meeting was public.

If Clinton was "bleeding profusely" after the crash then transporting her out of Iran and back to the US would potentially be dicey - she's 65 years old, and one's response to trauma at that age is less than elastic. However, if they managed to get whole blood in her and exclude the possibility of significant head trauma then a medevac would just about be plausible. I wouldn't have liked to take the risk of moving her far from that crash site though.

Overall this is a great example of conspiracy theories: just on the edge of plausible, some facts lining up but others forming something of a ragged edge, originating from a source with ample reason to foment trouble, and failing to answer the basic question of why all this would be so secret in the first place.


  1. These reports are not propaganda reports - they are reports at the government level Russia, so they are based upon the best efforts of the Russian intelligence community. Do I trust Russian intelligence? Not particularly. But do I trust American media or for that matter our own American government? Not particularly. So therein lies the problem for most people - we have no one we can trust.

  2. I suspect the line between propaganda and best estimates of fact is rather blurry in Russia - on the other hand, as you point out, it's not exactly clear in the USA (or UK) either. Thank goodness we've got bloggers to rely on! (Ahem).


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