Pro-Russian Rebel Commander Says Passengers on MH17 Were Long Dead

Igor Girkin, the Russian separatists' top commander in eastern Ukraine, suggested today that Ukrainian authorities somehow killed the passengers on Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 before it was shot down. He told the pro-rebel website Russkaya Vesna that "a significant number of the bodies weren't fresh" at the crash site.

Girkin, who says he got his information from people at the crash site, also noted that the bodies were "drained of blood and reeked of decomposition." Girkin says he can't verify his information — of course — but notes that "Ukrainian authorities are capable of any baseness."

Girkin's aide offered other misinformation this morning, claiming the rebels had recovered eight of 12 black boxes at the crash site. Rebel leader Aleksander Borodai later contradicted him. (Planes typically only have two black boxes.)

[Image via AP]