During the tempestuous election scandals of December, it was noted that many of the images presented as evidence of vote rigging came from smartphones. The ready availability of cameras thanks to cell phones has been an increasing problem for the notoriously tightly-controlled state monopoly on news. A salient example of how new media can find a chink in the Kremlin’s media armor has come today. Disasters, which are regrettably plentiful in Russia, are often the subjects of a lockdown on info. The Yekaterinburg nuclear submarine fire has proved no different; neighboring Norway has reportedly complained about a lack of transparency regarding the nature of the accident. As the Barents Observer reports, however, intrepid Blogger 51, who is apparently highly active in the Murmansk region, has managed to penetrate the media shield and provide photo evidence that supposedly belies the official version:
A third photo, taken after the fire was finally extinguished after 20 hours, shows that not much of the acoustic rubber coating on the surface of the submarine hull is damaged by the fire. The images contradict earlier statements that the fire stroked the outer hull.
Northern fleet spokesman Capt. 1st rank Vadim Serga told RIA Novosti that the wooden scaffolding around the submarine caught fire, which spread to the submarine’s outer hull.
The blogger that has posted the images writes: …this was shocking, I earlier incorrectly suggested that the markings on the front end came from an external fire, but here it is clear that the fairing was damaged from inside. Concerning the rubber coating, on the junction on the right side are not as many burned fragments of rubber coating, as dismantled ones.
The fire and the reasons for the fire are a hot topic in social media like Facebook, Vkontakte and Twitter in the Murmansk region.
The question many ask is; why was there a large cut in the hull of the submarine’s torpedo compartment? What combustible material inside the hull made such large flames over such long period and why was it so difficult to extinguish the fire?
Read the whole article and see the images here.