Talk:Al-Quds Hospital, Aleppo

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So, What Happened?

We never had any talk page here? Ok ... I never solved this one. I have some thoughts, would like to see if anyone else does, etc.

Again, MSF heard the place was hit twice, five minutes apart.

  • first, the entrance to the emergency room - location unclear - only damage seen (minor) is just inside the main entrance, down a long hall from anything else.
  • next, the emergency room itself, and also the top two floors, were attacked and destroyed, presumably by two simultaneous blasts (?).

I see some clues of an internal blast, and some of en external blast nearby, and none for a direct hit, exterior-to-interior blast. But I'm no expert. Will be adding some notes soon. --Caustic Logic (talk) 06:40, 26 February 2017 (UTC)

Serious damage/injuries At 1:22 we see in the smoke what appears to be a woman carrying a child. perhaps covered in dust, walking unevenly as if on rubble. (a photo on the front page shows a woman carrying a bloodied child down the rubble outside the entrance - unclear if this can be the same, or another. A limp, bloody, dust-covered girl with head-wounds is seen loaded in an ambulance - also unclear if the same or another) At 1:14 we see what seems to be the floor above the main blast (see below) - blast is sharp here as well. doors fly open, a flash is seen. A woman was standing there, and is down and still afterwards. --Caustic Logic (talk) 07:10, 27 February 2017 (UTC)

Blast Origin and Level Questions

Using CNN's video of the security cameras, and the notes from Channel 4's video, ... Dr. Muhammad Maaz left work at the intensive care unit At 0:43, he's dutifully locking the door, it seems, putting the key in his pocket, taking it with him as he heads downstairs. Locked intensive care might make sense. Next shift might have the key, might already be in there. Anyway...

The stairs suggest at least one floor above and one blow this. He was about to start his night shift in the emergency room (should be around 9:45, 9:50 pm) He goes downstairs (one floor below), down another flight, onto another floor (two floors below), apparently ground floor (if so, he was on floor 3 to start with). He comes towards the camera and turns to our left. That might be another stairwell he takes down, or the emergency room. It might extend behind that left wall. Just then, perhaps before he can even step in (or down), the blast happens, seemingly from the other side of that wall. It's bright, like a bomb detonation right there, not like a wave of rubble from a massive strike ripping in from the outside.

Adding: a graphic of his descent. Not sure what floor #s to use, I use letters. He starts on d and ends on b, with a possible floor a below. Noe: the flooring here (diagonal strips) is the same as in the main hall on the ground floor. So this might be ground floor, but not the main hall that connects to the main entrance. --Caustic Logic (talk) 14:55, 27 February 2017 (UTC)

Al-Quds Hospital Levels Visual.png

This seems to be the second blast. Some agitated reactions earlier in the video suggest there was some unclear noise outside but nearby that everyone heard (the first "direct attack" on the hospital). They seem a little worried but then relax just before the blast inside (doors on the floor above are flung open). The second blast was said to hit the emergency room and he was said to be killed, so that must be the emergency room. Did someone have a bomb in there? --Caustic Logic (talk) 15:10, 26 February 2017 (UTC)

Don't think much can be made out of those videos. but some observations. Before the blast, he appears to be on the ground floor close to exist (TV monitor, clock, fire extinguishers, some posters and key access, possibly snack bar, all that only on this floor). He is off camera before the blast, allowing easy editing, no bodies or hard evidence anybody is killed. Blast comes horizontally into the wall, as they tend to come in many of those likely staged recordings. There is quite big flash which does suggest it exploded close to the wall, ground floor level outside of the building, not just a shock wave from a distance, and not it coming through the roof. Door swings open from a blast below, again with a flash, all suggesting ground floor explosion close to the entrance. No people around when door swings open, although it was busy before that; again, staging is easy. In conclusion, no hard evidence it is aerial explosion and not something else (car bomb/hell fire/large mortar), and that it actually killed somebody. Although it is not totally excluded either. --Resup (talk) 17:16, 26 February 2017 (UTC)
Good, some thoughts. Thanks. We agree it seems horizontal, nearby, just on the other side of that wall. Agreed a snack machine, and it seems ground floor (but ... correlating imagery maybe not - may be basement? Will study some more). But that shouldn't be the entrance. That will be a ways behind the camera. This is apparently: a) where he was supposedly headed b) where MSF heard the blast happened c) where he died = the emergency room. The entrance to it must be the main entrance (and you take the first left a ways in). From the outside, we see no serious damage. Suggested: the blast was all inside, and only damaged stuff inside. That would be interesting. --Caustic Logic (talk) 07:10, 27 February 2017 (UTC)
Your note on easy editing is valid and maybe important. But for now I'll presume there are no cuts within clips, just maybe careul montage work between them. --Caustic Logic (talk) 07:10, 27 February 2017 (UTC)
Update: One important cut noted: Implied is blast instantly as Maaz rounds the corner. But I noticed the time jumps suddenly, one minute ten seconds. He could be in there, with just some boring stuff innocently cut out, or he could have dropped off his shoulder bag in there and left, and they might be trying to hide that as they blame the regime. Here are two consecutive frames, with digits changing more than they should (8:41:02 to 8:42:12), and a door in the background was open a crack and later isn't. Then the blast happens. --Caustic Logic (talk) 14:55, 27 February 2017 (UTC)

Al-Quds Hospital Video Edit.png

To clarify, I finally checked and despite the apparent differences, the final hallway on floor "b" is the same main, ground-floor hallways seen in aftermath videos, and in the Aleppo doctor's two internal photos. The apparent E.R. doorway Maaz walks into would be the first left after you go up the ramp. The apparent snack machine is more like a snack rack (see 0:11 in this video). So floors: b=1, c=2, d=3. --Caustic Logic (talk) 13:16, 1 March 2017 (UTC)

Opposite Blast Directions?

The blast seen at 1:14, apparently on a floor above the main blast, could challenge that however. It seems to be from the same If the blast comes through on two floors, it might be external. But if that's the stairwell side, it's from the opposite side of the hall as the lower blast, and thus not the same blast (if I'm reading this right). What side is this? What's on the other side? Front and side walls seem intact. The other two are up against surrounding buildings. And two blasts at opposite directions can't have the same external explanation, so ... they must be originating from at least two rooms inside the hospital, apparently coordinated. --Caustic Logic (talk) 07:10, 27 February 2017 (UTC)

Blast on level b, from side opposite the stairwell (refer to levels graphic above) - first smoke comes out windows in the doors a bit back, then we see the big flash, coming from the left foreground:

Al-Quds Hospital Blast comp.png

Blast above on floor c, coming from stairwell side (again, compare to above). Smoke first, a bright flash from (the ceiling?), a whoosh and heavier smoke, perhaps coming down the stairwell (later, the door swings open, and then we see the woman standing there is down.) Time-stamp: 8:42:12. Different floor, different (opposite) blast direction, so different blasts, but same time = ?? Coordinated by an insider? Maybe the kind of guy with keys to different rooms?

Al-Quds Hospital Blast C comp.png

To help clarify:

Al-Quds Hospital blasts problem.png

3rd Floor Blast?

Any blast from behind the locked door on floor 3 (d) is not shown. Maybe there was none. But that would be directly above the c level blast, and those might be connected. --Caustic Logic (talk) 14:55, 27 February 2017 (UTC)

Adding to that - there is a blast up there. The hall on floor 2 (c) runs a ways back, and at the end is a window facing behind the building, on a breezeway between buildings. In the lower left frame, as the pre-blast smoke forms, note the window lights up. That must be light reflecting off nearby concrete, from the window above, where the detonation already happened. Unless that broke through the floor, this is a different blast right beneath it. --Caustic Logic (talk) 13:23, 1 March 2017 (UTC)

External Blast

Okay, this might be interesting. I finally watched the "Truth" video by My Home Syria, through part 2 (mostly - it's slow.) In the middle of part 2, a case is made that the external blast comes from a parked vehicle. And either way we can see it's like the internal ones - some smoke, then a bright flash, sparks, more smoke, and little to no dust or rubble, as if some building were being blown up.

I wish it could be clearer, but I agree with the analyst here that only two versions of this footage can be found. It's as if the footage was given to Channel 4 and CNN Arabic and no one else. If anyone can scrounge up any different version, please let me know. The scene in question is not included in the CNN Arabic version, and in the Channel 4 version, it's almost totally hidden under a shadow box (slight transparency, we can barely see a white shape suddenly expands), with government-blaming text, covering all but the edges of this strange blast. If I can't find anything better, I may try the advanced tools to reverse-key the blame, select and enhance that part ... ugh.

Anyway, from what we see so far ... I haven't bothered with camera #s yet, but this is camera #10, apparently on the outside of the hospital, looking north across the street (it's the only street around with a divider down the middle with shrubs). I was confused above, but all exterior views (I think) are this same camera #10. (eventually to do: figure just where it is, what's left or right of its center of view). --Caustic Logic (talk) 12:10, 28 February 2017 (UTC)

Al-Quds external view.png

Views of the scene compared - the white van (ambulance?) boxed here is of interest. Notice it's parked rammed against that light pole. That seems intersting. --Caustic Logic (talk) 13:07, 28 February 2017 (UTC)

Al-Quds external blast 1.png

The blast seems to originate exactly in the back half of that van? Or is it a bigger source just behind it? Opinions? --Caustic Logic (talk) 13:07, 28 February 2017 (UTC)

Took me a number of viewings to see the point, so maybe worthwhile having it in words. We have (at least) 3 views of the van to consider: (1) full view, 2.15-2:35, parked very close to lamp post (maybe not touching it, it just projects to appear that way). (2) the van lights up out of the wide black strip with text covering lower portion of the frame at about 3m 25 s. Here we see explosion starting outside of our viewing area behind the van; it lights up the van and the lamp post (3) we are given zoomed version of (2) at 3:55, where it looks like it starts right behind visible part of the van. We do not see the whole van (comparing with full van view), only some 2/3 or so of the front portion; which suggests that blast may be happening at the back of the van, not behind the van. All that is partially obscured, low quality to begin with, and edited several times (text, slowing, zoom, etc); so there is no full confidence, but there is a point made. On second explosion, I just cannot see where and how it is happening, so whatever. That ambulance passed the van and is gone, as far as I can tell. --Resup (talk) 22:50, 1 March 2017 (UTC)

Thanks, Resup. I'm not sure what to make of it. It seems the analysis video was saying the van blew up. I thought maybe its back half only. I think we see about 3/4 or more of the van. Seeing how it lines up with the opposite curb, the rectangle of light in the second frame seems only half along the van's rear and half behind it. (the shape of that glow is likely an artifact from the shadow box edge). That and the sharp shadow suggest to me the blast is actually just behind the van, not in it. (may do a video experiment to see what I can salvage and clarify - started it, but may not have the time to bother going further)
In fact the light could from the entrance, but it's probably too bright and expansive to be the emergency room flash, and that would not cause the sparks and prolonged fire we see out here. So clearly it's a different blast, apparently outside the entrance, maybe in a vehicle that pulled in unseen right behind the van? (the ambulance scene for reference is like 3 minutes earlier). Or a small bomb might be rolled under the van's back bumper, or ... Don't know where else. Just laying there? Under some junk? Fired in by a mortar? (nah, too precise: this is casio-coordinated stuff - if the time stamp isn't altered) Stuck to the entrance itself? --Caustic Logic (talk) 12:45, 2 March 2017 (UTC)

Here'e a video where I enhanced the dark area. It's pretty clear the blast is not in the van but behind it, and closer to the entrance, if not in it. There are a lot of streaking particles and related artifacts, so it's had to be clear, but ... there seem to be a number of differently moving, discrete, white or glowing objects moving around at non-wind angles. It almost seems two appear in front of the van, one bounces off its back end, and one might hit the median, bounce into street, and stay there. Is this just those artifacts, or something different? I'm not sure. They seem to appear all of a sudden in the second or two right before the blast, and not at other times. --Caustic Logic (talk) 04:57, 5 March 2017 (UTC)

Also noting after the blast, at 0:42 in the C4 video, a van is driving away. Not clear if it's the same van, might be a different shape. The lettering is gone now, but the camera is panned higher (or the video is cropped?), so we can't see if the one van is still there. The street light has been knowcked off its pole now, dangling (as would be seen the next day). But power lines (?) were already down (seemingly across the van, illuminated by the flash) --Caustic Logic (talk)

Correlating Blasts

No blah blah here for now. I just almost finished this blog post which re-explains all this. But here's the map of where I think these three (or four?) separate blasts happened. --Caustic Logic (talk) 13:26, 1 March 2017 (UTC)

Al-Quds hospital blasts mapped.png

(not to scale, etc.)

Blasts Timeline

(note: Video time-stamp are off by about an hour from MSF-reported times - refer to CNN Arabic version)

  • 9:45 (app.): MSF estimates first "direct attack"
  • interior footage starts 8:37:57, with commotion on floor "c" suggesting a noise outside, nearby, that people are a bit worried about (0:10 in the video). Men go downstairs to investigate, women go back in the rooms. Time estimate for that noise then is about 8:37:30. No sign of any damage, smoke etc. inside at this point, from any camera view.
  • 8:39:05 (video) - Dr. Maaz locks the room on floor "d", then goes downstairs
  • 8:39:35 - external camera shows possible dust from earlier strike blowing on the wind, no new explosions.
  • 8:40:53-8:41:02: floor "b" Dr. Maaz walks into (emergency room?) on floor "b" (1:04 in the video)
  • 8:41:30-8:41:43 - floor "b" patient rolled from (ER?) down the hall, into another door (0:30 in the video)
  • 9:50 (app.): MSF estimates second direct air strike hits emergency room and/or upper floors

- second blast(s):

  • 8:42:12 floor "b" - smoke, the big blast (from er?)
  • 8:42:12 floor "c" - smoke, then small blast (from above, stairwell side?)
  • 8:42:12 external - smoke, then a bright, low-level, sparkling blast with no rubble, some smoke (from below, in or by a parked van?) - not shown in CNN Arabic version. Shown in Channel 4 version at 0:35, but mostly hidden under government blame, as noted in My Home Syria analysis, part 2 (around 4:00 in)
  • 8:47:02, external - possible fresh blast, or the building, or truck, still burning? Bright fire and smoke rising from below. --Caustic Logic (talk) 11:30, 28 February 2017 (UTC)

Dr. Hamza al-Khatib

Many have made an issue of the name given for the hospital manager, Hamza al-Khatib, the same name as (slowly-decaying) chubby child martyr of 2011. I figured it could be a pseudonym, or a real name - it's made of two common names. Maybe everyone knew this, but I didn't - it apparently is a pseudonym. He has most photos and videos credited to a Waad al-Khateib, who's said to be his wife, and apparently is a conduit to UK Channel 4 News. This CNN profile of "The woman who exposed the horrors of Aleppo," by the ever humane Christiane Amanpour, says that's not her real name and that isn't her husband's real name either. So, he lifted the kid's name. Best evidence then says he manager's namesake was murdered and mutilated, or tortured, by terrorists before it was dumped inside the military housing complex they had invaded on April 29, 2011. (report PDF). --Caustic Logic (talk) 11:40, 13 March 2017 (UTC)

not her real name, not his real name. (either could be something al-Khatib, but if they're devout Sunnis, and they are on that side, they shouldn't both have the same last name)