MH17 crash: Outrage over rebels with a vicious cause

Disbelief. Outrage. An assault on human decency.

If the men who shot Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 out of the skies even care, the world is not only grieving, but angry.

Malaysia's Transport Minister Liow Tiong Lai called it an "outrage against human decency". For Malaysia Airlines employees, it feels like sickening history repeating itself.

"For this to happen just four months after MH370, just when we were beginning to get on with life, it is just very difficult to take," an airline executive told Reuters at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport.

"You can't imagine how draining it is, how emotional. Everyone can't believe this is happening again. We are going through all of the emotions once again."

In Volendam, Holland, a handwritten note taped on the storefront of one of the victims, read: "This is unwanted, unbelievable and unfair. Rest in peace. We will never forget you."

A woman and her family who were supposed to be on the flight is still reeling from the shock.

"I'm shaking. I don't even know what to do, I feel physically sick," she said from Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport.

An alleged video of the crash surfaced online - the plane was seen falling from the sky before bursting into flames.

Images of mangled bodies of the victims have been circulating. A popular search term on Twitter was "mh17 bodies".

Freelance journalist Noah Sneider tweeted: "At crash site of #MH17. Bodies everywhere, organs splayed out. Too gruesome to post photographs. This is an absolute disaster. #ukraine"

Those who spread the gory images were soon condemned.

A Twitter user said: "Why are people filming and taking pictures of the bodies recovered from MH17? Can people not even have dignity in death? Disgusting."

Another Twitter user said: "I cannot bear looking at the families of the crew and passengers of MH17... so much pain. Let there be justice for their family. #MH17"

All 298 passengers and crew were killed. More than half of the passengers were from the Netherlands. The national flag of the Netherlands was flown at half mast yesterday.

- Linette Heng

This article was first published on July 19, 2014.
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