2. Incompetent pro-Russian Ukrainian forces bring down what they think is an enemy military transport plane. For some reason this aircraft is travelling at a constant altitude of 33,000 feet 20 miles from Russian airspace, into which, travelling at some 500 miles per hour, it will pass in a couple of minutes. Subsequently a source says that oddly, reportedly "uncomfortable" with his route, the pilot has changed his flight plan, which normally would be to cross further south over the Sea of Azov, to head closer to the heart of the conflict:
|source: Daily Mail|
(UPDATE @ 18:35: see this from The Conversation about flight restrictions in the area.)
3. In a bungled assassination attempt, someone working for the other side hits MH17 by mistake, thinking it to be President Putin's official plane.
4. The missile strike is a "false flag" pseudo-terrorist attack. In order to curb Russian expansionism (or historically, their partial recovery of some territory formerly under Soviet control) and block what may be Putin's plans for the Black Sea and a nascent EEC-style Eastern European economic union, Western agencies are quite happy to murder some 300 innocent civilians to create a pretext for military intervention in the Ukraine - or anti-Russian boycotts and sanctions.
Update (9:12): the trigger-happy-idiots theory may be correct - see Richard North today - but as North says, has the potential for dangerous anti-Russian spin, which Washington's Blog says was the American approach to a similar tragedy in 1983.
Update (21 July): Richard North says that the Ukrainian government was aware of an operational missile launcher in rebel territory and failed in its duty to warn airlines accordingly.
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