Video: Journalist Murdered? - WhoWhatWhy

Video: Journalist Murdered?

Reading Time: 10 minutes

Or was it?

Michael Krikorian, an essayist and former Los Angeles Times crime reporter, happened upon the scene a few hours after journalist Michael Hastings’s speeding car slammed into a palm tree and burst into a fireball.

Krikorian has seen his share of fatal car wrecks. But this one was different. As he put it, “This demands a closer examination.”

In accident-investigation parlance, it was a roadway departure–a non-intersection crash in which a vehicle leaves the traveled way for some reason.

But how and why did Hastings’s Mercedes depart the traveled way, and why was it traveling so perilously fast?

In a city where there seem to be as many car wrecks as cars, North Highland Avenue in L.A.’s Hancock Park neighborhood is not exactly Dead Man’s Curve. A fatal car accident there is rare.

Highland is a four-lane neighborhood artery as straight as a laser, with a narrow, grassy median lined with towering Washingtonia robusta palms. In the two miles between Wilshire and Santa Monica boulevards, not a single traffic fatality was recorded on Highland from 2001 to 2009, according to National Highway Traffic Safety Administration data.

In the final moments of Michael Hastings’s life, the car he was operating accelerated to a treacherous speed before swerving off the pavement, mounting the median and slamming into one of the palms. There were no skid marks—no apparent attempt to brake before the collision.

Hastings, 33, covered the Iraq War as a young correspondent for Newsweek. But he made front-page news (and won the prestigious George Polk journalism prize) for his 2010 Rolling Stone magazine profile of “The Runaway General,” Stanley McChrystal, commander of NATO’s security force in Afghanistan. Hastings’s story portrayed the dismissive contempt with which McChrystal and his staff viewed President Obama and Vice President Biden. The general apologized, calling the profile “a mistake reflecting poor judgment.” But he was forced to resign.

Michael Hastings was carving out a journalism niche as a muckraker, and some see nefarious forces at work in his death.

We asked Michael Krikorian for his take on the curious accident, which happened in his hometown on a block he visits several times a week. He provides the details of new video evidence that offers a few clues about the seemingly inexplicable fatality.—David J. Krajicek


By Michael Krikorian

Shortly before 9 a.m. on Tuesday, June 18, I was walking with my girlfriend, Nancy Silverton, to get my car, which I had left the night before at her restaurant, Pizzeria Mozza, at Highland and Melrose avenues. Walking west on Melrose, we noticed crime scene tape as we arrived at Highland. Just to the south, a wrecked and charred car was being pulled away from a palm tree in the median.

We lifted the yellow tape and walked down the sidewalk to get access to the alley leading to the lot where my car was parked. A Los Angeles police officer stopped us. Nancy explained she owned the restaurant and I identified myself as a reporter. The officer let us walk on and gave a quick rundown: A man had driven into the tree at 4:30 that morning. He was dead.

My first thought was that another early morning L.A. drunk had killed himself. I told the officer that a security camera located outside the front door of the pizzeria probably captured the crash.

As we talked to the police, a Mozza employee named Gary, who has been staying at a small apartment above the restaurant, approached us to say that he had heard the crash.

“I heard a ‘whoosh,’ then what sounded like a bump and then an explosion,” he said. “I thought the building had been hit.”

He said he rushed down and saw the car ablaze. Gary listened as two men who claimed to have witnessed the crash told police the car had sped through a red light at Melrose.

Later, when the pizzeria manager arrived at work, we watched the security camera footage.  There’s no wonder it was a fatality. The crash ended with a hellish explosion and fire. The officer, watching the video with us, was as stunned as we were. He said, “I have never seen a car explode like that.”

Soon, a flatbed truck with the burned Mercedes CL 250 aboard drove slowly by, going north in the southbound lanes of Highland. The front of the car, particularly on the driver’s side, was badly damaged. I snapped a couple of poor photos with my iPhone.

The Man Who Brought Down General McChrystal

Nancy and I got in my car and went home. I went on to Watts to do some reporting on another story and later to Gardena. That afternoon, I got an email from a friend to whom I had mentioned the crash. It included a link to an L.A. Times story about the wreck. My friend wrote, “The driver was a well-known journalist: Michael Hastings. What a drag. Obviously a talented guy. Wonder why he was driving so fast?”

I went online and read about Michael Hastings, the guy who brought down General McChrystal. The conspiracy theories were already being spun on the web: that a bomb had been planted in the car, or that its controls had been hacked and the crash was engineered remotely by an unseen hand.

For nearly five years, McChrystal served as chief of the Joint Special Operations Command, which oversees the military’s commando units, including the Army Delta Force and the Navy Seals. This was not a paper-pushing general.  McChrystal was a soldier’s general who would go on raids with his men. A reporter brings him down—and then dies in a mysterious crash three years later. If this had happened in Russia, wouldn’t we all figure it was some dark military conspiracy?

I’m not a conspiracy guy, but my reporter’s instincts told me that this demands a closer examination. So I snooped around.

Mysteries on the Video Tape

“I’ve never seen an explosion like that,” said Terry Hopkins, 46, a former U.S. Navy military policeman who served in Afghanistan, told me. “I’ve seen military vehicles explode, but never quite like that. Look, here’s a reporter who brought down a general. He’s sending out emails saying he’s being watched. It’s four in the morning and his car explodes? Come on, you have to be naïve not to at least consider it wasn’t an accident.”

I turned to the one piece of evidence I had: the security camera footage.

The camera shows the view from near the entrance of Pizzeria Mozza.

Four seconds into the start of the tape, a minivan or SUV goes by the front of restaurant. Three seconds later, another vehicle goes by, traveling from the restaurant front door to the crash site in about seven seconds. At 35 seconds into the tape, a car is seen driving northbound and appears to slow, probably for the light at Melrose.

Then at 79 seconds, the camera catches a very brief flash of light in the reflection of the glass of the pizzeria. Traveling at least twice as fast as the other cars on the tape, Hastings’s Mercedes C250 coupe suddenly whizzes by. (This is probably the “whoosh” that Gary, the Mozza employee, heard.)

The car swerves and then explodes in a brilliant flash as it hits a palm tree in the median. Viewed at normal speed, it is a shocking scene—reminiscent of fireballs from “Shock and Awe” images from Baghdad in 2003.

I have heard and read a wide range of guessed speeds, up to as much as 130 mph. I think it’s safe to say the car was doing at least 80.

Driving 80 on Highland is flying. Over 100 is absolute recklessness.

Highland has a very slight rise and fall at its intersection with Melrose. It’s difficult to tell by the film, but based on tire marks—which were not brake skid marks, by the way—chalked by the traffic investigators, it seems that the Mercedes may have been airborne briefly as it crossed the intersection, then landed hard. Tire marks were left about 10 feet east of the restaurant’s valet stand.

(Later, I drove the intersection at just 45 mph, and my car rose up significantly.)

About 100 feet after the car zooms by on the tape, it starts to swerve. At about 195 feet from the camera, the car jumps the curb of the center median, heading toward a palm tree 56 feet away.

About halfway between the curb and the tree, the car hits a metal protrusion—perhaps 30 inches tall and 2 feet wide—that gives access to city water mains below. This is where the first small flash occurs. This pipe may have damaged the undercarriage of the car, perhaps rupturing a fuel line.

I looked at the tape frame by frame. A second flash immediately follows the first. It might be the brake lights, but it’s hard to tell. The next frame is dark. Then comes the first explosion, followed immediately by a large fireball.

I showed the video to a number of people. Everyone had the same reaction: essentially, “Wow!”

“This Was Not a Bomb”

I showed the video to Scott E. Anderson, an Academy Award-winning visual effects supervisor with Digital Sandbox who has engineered explosions for many films.

He viewed the footage more than 20 times at various speeds, including frame by frame. Anderson concluded, “This was not a bomb.”

He said a bomb would have propelled the car upward, not forward.

“It’s very hard to blow up stuff well,” Anderson said. “I think too many things would have to go right. Luck would be involved. Good and bad. Does someone doing this to Hastings want to rely on luck? Too many things have to go right. It would have to be perfect. And that’s almost impossible.”

He continued, “It comes down to physics. A bomb would have lifted the car and the engine up. Based on this video, the car doesn’t go up, and the engine goes forward, which makes sense since the car apparently did not hit the tree head on.”

He said the fireball may be enhanced by the recording device.

“That type of surveillance camera has auto exposure so it can change what it sees based by the ambient exposure day or night,” Anderson explained. “This camera is set at night and anything that happens very quickly, be it a flash light or a big ball of fire, the camera won’t react fast enough, so the first flash of light is going to appear much bigger in the viewing. So the initial explosion would always look bigger than it is.”

He suggested a simple demonstration using a cellphone video app: Strike a match in a dark room and it will flare up on camera much more than in reality.

Why Was He Driving So Fast?

The pizzeria video is compelling, but it fails to answer the key question: Why was Michael Hastings traveling so fast?

As Anderson put it, “None of this happens without the speed.”

Some theorize that the car was hacked—operated remotely (like a drone, for example) by someone who wished to harm Hastings.

That may be technologically possible, but is it plausible?

Hastings ran at least two red lights, and possibly a third. Could a hacker have planned for no cross traffic, which might have derailed the mission? If the flash before the dark frame was indeed brakes, that would indicate the brake light was functional. If the car were hurtling along out of his control, wouldn’t Hastings have been plying the brake pedal all along, not merely in the last second before the crash?

And even if the brakes and accelerator were rigged, the steering must have been functional, according to a Los Angeles Police Department officer, speaking on the condition of anonymity. “For nearly a half a mile, that car must have been going straight,” the officer said. “That can’t be done at that speed for that long, even with the best alignment.”

“Stanley Got Him”

The day after the crash, I found myself in the homicide squad room in South Los Angeles. The Hastings topic came up, and one of the detectives said, “Stanley got him. Took his time, but got him. That wasn’t an accident.” (Meaning General Stanley McChrystal.)

On cue, a sign showed up the next day on the now-singed Hasting’s Palm: “This was not an accident.”  By nightfall, someone had replaced it with another message: “Go to sleep people. This was an accident.”

Hastings’s death was national news briefly, but it was soon pushed aside by subjects deemed more pressing to the mainstream media. The George Zimmerman homicide trial was gearing up in Florida. Edward Snowden, the National Security Agency leaker, was playing Tom Hanks at a Moscow Airport. Istanbul had erupted in the biggest anti-government protests in its history, and political strife in Cairo was taking center stage.

Michael Hastings was put on the mainstream media’s back burner—or perhaps on an unlit hibachi behind the garage.

But on YouTube the conspiracy thrived. One video that has received over 8,500 views proclaimed that the plot was so over-the-top that the culprits had removed the bombed car, and in the process, placed another car in front of different trees. It also stated there was no damage to the front of the car.

I saw the car being towed away.  It was absolutely mangled on the front, particularly the driver’s side. I’ve lived in Los Angeles most of my life and have seen the aftermath of many car crashes. This was one of the worst. There was no way a driver could have survived.

LAPD Traffic Bureau: ‘No Foul Play’

Two days after the crash, the LAPD announced that there appeared to be no “foul play” in the single-car fatal crash. That ignited even more conspiracy talk:  The “feds” had gotten to the LAPD and were hushing it up.

A week after that statement, the lead investigator on the case, Detective Connie White from LAPD’s West Traffic Bureau, contradicted that. When I asked her if “foul play” had indeed been ruled out, she replied, “No. Nothing has been ruled out.”

White said the investigation was nearly complete, but she refused to give details. She said an official report, including toxicology results on Hastings’s remains, may be weeks away.

As far as a bomb or car-hacking, White said, “At this point there is nothing that leads us in that direction.”

When asked if any explosive materials had been discovered on the car or at the crash scene, White sounded like she chuckled.

She said, “Oh, boy. Hold on.”

I thought maybe I had asked a touchy question, and I expected a “no comment.” But she returned to the phone and said, “No.” The way she said it, I wondered if she had shared a laugh with other detectives about my question.

She added, “If this were anything other than an accident, other departments would have been brought in to investigate,” alluding to homicide, the bomb squad or a terrorism unit. (Though one might think “other departments” would have been needed in any case–simply to determine whether it was an accident or not.)

On TV, Hastings Provokes another General

I’ve seen a number of people use the word “fearless” to describe Hastings. The word has different meanings to different people. To some, it might be how well someone held up in the second battle of Fallujah.

I have no idea how Hasting was in the trenches. But I watched him in action on Piers Morgan’s CNN show last November against retired General David Kimmit, an admirer of General David Petraeus.  At one point, Kimmit told Hastings that his impressions about Iraq after Petraeus were wrong. Kimmit added that he knew this because he has been back to Iraq, working in the private sector.

Exasperated, Hasting threw up his hands, gave his unique smirk and proclaimed, “I’ve spent more time in Iraq than you have, man.”

Hastings went on to chide Kimmit for profiting off the war in the private sector. “I’m glad the general was able to make money off his services,” he said.

In that TV vignette, I could see why a guy like Hastings would piss off the military brass and would be so admired by fellow journalists.

I hope that someone will be able to explain why Hastings’s Mercedes was speeding like a silver bullet. Maybe the answer will show up in the toxicology results.  I know this much: American journalism has lost a pit bull of an investigative reporter.

[box]WhoWhatWhy plans to continue doing this kind of groundbreaking original reporting. You can count on it. But can we count on you? We cannot do our work without your support.

Please click here to donate; it’s tax deductible. And it packs a punch.[/box]


Where else do you see journalism of this quality and value?

Please help us do more. Make a tax-deductible contribution now.

Our Comment Policy

Keep it civilized, keep it relevant, keep it clear, keep it short. Please do not post links or promotional material. We reserve the right to edit and to delete comments where necessary.


342 responses to “Video: Journalist Murdered?”

  1. truthbetold says:

    My theory is that his car was being remotely controlled/hacked, and the final assault was a drone attack which blew up his car. A head on collision with a tree will not have your engine ejected away from the auto chassis. He was murdered. He angered some very powerful people in Washington. There was word that he was working on a very big story. A story that would shake up Washington. The pieces of the puzzle are coming together for those who choose to look at the physics; science, and mathematics, and to disregard the governments account of the events, due to inability to provide any reasonable scientific evidence. The question is, why was he targeted, and who would benefit from his demise? Who gave the order to silence Michael Hastings? The answers to these questions will most likely never be known. Those responsible always make sure that evidence disappears, or is misplaced. Another cold case file. RIP Michael Hastings.

    • BeachN says:

      agreed…This story obviously avoids discussing why the drivetrain was so far away from the car and to the right side of the road..More attempts to quiet the chatter

  2. Edna Mode says:

    2/8/15 CBS’s 60 MInutes confirms in it’s lead story that DARPA 5 years ago developed the ability to remotely control automobiles from anywhere in the world. It even gave a demonstration. The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is an agency of the U.S. Department of Defense.

  3. Barbara's Political Rantings says:

    Does anybody remember John Wheeler?

  4. RobertMStahl says:

    The transmission and what looks to be the engine, in one piece, is seen on YouTube on the opposite side of the street from where the car rested and a hundred and fifty feet from it. It had bounced over the curb and landed above the water drain, on the corner. Why is it hard to believe the gas pedal was not dialed up, never to return? Could it be Hastings steered it so that no one else was damaged, having a conscience to the very end? ‘Seems like everything is about to end in a flash these days, anyway, lest something be done to deal with asymmetric crime. What about Diana West’s portrayal of FDR and communism in the White House? The history of humans polluting, and the systemic crime across the board, whether mom and pop or corporate conglomerate. There is a poetic note in Hastings taking it all to himself, the last bang, however unfortunate the cards dealt had played themselves out, that is, exactly.

  5. Hosea McAdoo says:

    They don’t say it but the implication is clear: don’t piss off the US government, it could be bad for your health. The America we knew and loved is long gone.

    • BeachN says:

      Live your life doing what you KNOW is best for you and our country.. NEVER live your life fearing your government. This is OUR country and if enough of us care it will be ours once again. We can make it happen..

  6. Cletus says:

    Where’s the video evidence ???!!!???

  7. Patz says:

    I just finished reading Dead Wrong 2, Princess Diana by Richard Belzer. There are witnesses who describe many similarities between her “speeding Mercedes” and Hasting’s, like the “whooshing” sounds they made. Cars and planes seen to be their preferred methods of elimination now-so much easier tio deny than guns.

  8. Jose Mujica says:

    forgive my ignorance, can there be a toxicology report when the mortal remains sent home to the family are ashes?

    • letfreedomringrh says:

      I believe they cremated the body without family permission after the autopsy and then gave the family the ashes.

      This accident had nothing to with intoxicants. The autopsy toxicology report showed a minute trace-amount of a molecule left-behind in the blood or tissue samples after the body breaks-down methamphetamine. I’ll repeat – “minute”(!) – which does not mean that methamphetamine itself was present in the blood – a condition necessary to prove methamphetamine use at the time of the accident

      Moreover, there are many daily-use products that could cause a false-positive for the presence of methamphetamine. The minute amount present actually should have caused a responsible toxicologist acting in a professional manner to call the test inconclusive. The minute level present would not be considered a positive test for employment, nor would it be enough to prove in a court of law that the driver was under influence of methamphetamine at the time of the accident.

      Additionally, Hastings had been diagnosed in his younger-years with ADHD. The medication normally used to treat ADHD is Ritalin or Adderall and other stimulant/amphetamine type medication – both Ritalin and Adderall are “amphetamines” and would cause a positive result on a toxicology test. The other stimulant medication would cause a false-positive; however, even if Hastings was taking such a medication to treat ADHD, he would need to take it daily, which would cause it to show-up at much higher levels in a toxicology test than it did in the autopsy toxicology test results – the same would be true if Hastings was using methamphetamine recreationally.

      This all tells me that the trace-amount found in autopsy toxicology test results was likely a false-positive for methamphetamine caused by something other than methamphetamine, and Hastings was not under the influence of methamphetamine at the time of the accident. (My credentials to make such a conclusion is: I’m an experience AODA counselor and have been experienced with drug testing since it first came onto the scene in the 1980’s. I also use prescribed-Adderall to treat my own professionally diagnosed adult-ADD.)

      Also, the autopsy toxicology test results show a trace-amount of the molecule left-behind after the body breaks-down THC – the psycho-active chemical in marijuana. Again, trace-amount indicates “minute” and not evidence of under the influence of marijuana (active THC in the blood) at the time of the accident.

      Finally, there was no alcohol present in the autopsy toxicology test results.

      Conclusion – Micheal Hastings was not under the influence of any intoxicants at the time of the accident!

  9. Lee Cahalan says:

    Here’s a scenario which matches the evidence. It may not be exactly what happened but at least it fits the evidence.

    1. Hastings’ car either had a GPS loaded onto it without his knowledge or someone working for McChrystal had tapped into the existing GPS on the car.

    2. Hastings finds himself being followed regularly.

    3. On one of these occasions such as his last night alive Hastings is attacked by a microwave gun from one of the cars following him. The dosage from the gun is enough to badly hurt and frighten him but not enough to kill. So Hastings decides to try and out run his attackers. Which of course doesn’t work because they’ve got him on GPS. In the final encounter he’s so desperate to get away from the painful microwave radiation he floors his car and the vehicle crashes in a fiery mess.

    Add explosives to the front of his car (optional). But something of this nature happened to him.

  10. SO says:

    Has the police report come out yet? Bwahahahahahahah….

  11. deprogramusa says:

    Maybe it had to do with Patreaus running guns from Libya to Turkey to the FSA.

  12. spktruth200 says:

    It was a hit. Hastings was on his way to do a tv show where he was going to expose much more about the police state called America. Even Mercedes benz disclaimer that the car could have exploded like that…it was a hit.

  13. Jeff Grotke says:

    whether or not this was a hit, i doubt seriously that it had anything to do with Stanley McChrystal. Three years after the fact? He would have nothing to gain by that.

    • Ann says:

      What’s he to gain; $100? He was a journalist, investigating the hidden truth was his career choice.

    • barabajagal says:

      Sweet revenge was gained by one of his b-l/a-kissers.

    • letfreedomringrh says:

      You don’t understand the military mind-set – not necessarily McChrystal (although I certainly would not rule him out), but one of his sycophants i.e. boot-licker/ass-kisser i.e. formerly under his command. While Hastings was with McChrystal’s unit doing the story he was warned by a McChrystal underling that they could reach-out and touch anyone, anywhere – a warning not to do a negatived story.

  14. same ass says:

    Has Mr. Krikorian managed to find and release the original Mozza surveillance video yet? Providing a second hand recording of a 23 sec. clip of the original video doesn’t get him off the hook by any means.
    Until we can watch the entire event through the lens of the Mozza camera(from the moment Hastings car passes the camera until the fire is extinguished) Krikorian is the most obvious suspect in this cover up. PERIOD!

  15. Kinsey says:

    Analogy of The Real Hastings Story

    First, a note on the so-called “news” company known by
    several different names, including LoudLabs and LoudLabs News. As pointed out by someone else, there appears to be no record of them as a business entity with the State of CA. They appear to have no known advertised business address, no advertised phone number, no known officers. The names of their employees and the number of them is secret, and so on. Mayber they’re simply a subsidiary of the CIA. So their credibility rating is “slippery” under the best case scenario. And the worst? Read on.

    Hastings’ car exploded (3 apparent explosions) at 4:19 a.m.,
    which woke neighbor Frankel, and is heard at 0:58 in the LoudLabs unedited dash-cam video, while Scott Lane was sitting at Vista & Santa Monica (west of Highland and on north side of Santa Monica) working on his computer.

    Why the explosions can be heard is unknown. But Lane put his
    vehicle in gear to depart 10 seconds later, at 1:08. He turned right out of the lot, got stopped by the nearby light and had to wait to turn left (east) on Santa Monica, and uttered (apparently in a hurry and frustrated), “Come on man.” (1:18)

    Waiting (1:25; apparently in response to a female
    dispatcher), he loudly said, “Why are you such a bitch?” At 1:42 a female voice is faintly heard saying something about “Melrose.” At 2:11 the light turned green, and Lane turned left (east) on Santa Monica.

    LL claims that just as he was leaving he realized he’d made
    a “mistake” on whatever he was working on his computer. Although there is metered parking along Santa Monica he didn’t pull over to correct the mistake.

    Almost 3 minutes post-explosions, as Lane approached the
    Mobile station at Highland, he moved into the right lane to pull in (3:47). There was a large vehicle, some type of RV or big van, already there parked across from the outermost pumps and facing Highland, close to the street. At 3:53, as Lane was pulling in, the RV driver may have stuck his arm out the window as if to signal Lane. It’s not clear.

    At 4:01 Lane pulled in to those pumps, next to the RV, and
    with the best view of the light at Highland from any pump. LL claims he pulled in only to correct his mistake. Why he pulled up to that particular pump, or to any pump, and not somewhere else is unknown, but it seems plain beyond doubt it was related somehow to the RV and the perfect view of the intersection.

    At 5:11, apparently again in response to a female
    dispatcher, Lane uttered, “You’re such a little bitch.”

    At 5:47 (4 minutes, 49 sec. post explosions), a speeding car
    passed, which is later claimed to be Hastings. Lane claims to have not seen it. A faint sound of a passing car is audible. Actual time is unknown, but it appears to have been approximately 4:24 a.m.

    At 4:23 a.m., 911 calls began (7 in all, as per info given to
    Kimberly Dvorak via LAPD). The calls were routed to the fire department, so likely not broadcast by the police dispatcher.

    At 7:06 Lane put it in gear to depart, and turned left, in front of the RV, as if to exit onto Santa Monica. There were no oncoming cars, but rather than continuing into the street he stopped right in front of the RV (7:14), so he was looking right in the front window of the RV, for no apparent reason. All he eventually did was turn right back onto Santa Monica, but he just sat there in front of the RV, even though the light at Highland was green for him to proceed right through. At 7:21 it sounds like he was typing on his computer, as if to alert someone that he was departing. At 7:29 he pulled out, turned right, and proceeded east on Santa Monica through Highland, allegedly on his way home to retire for the night, according to LL.

    At 7:55, traveling what appears to be rather quickly, and
    accelerating, he changed from the left to the right lane, as if anticipating a right turn.

    At 7:59, the white line between the lanes swerved to the
    right, but Lane didn’t, and straddled the line, and continued to staddle the white line. At 8:00 he passed a street.

    At 8:04 he passed another street while straddling the white
    line, and as if he was the one on meth.

    By 8:05 he seemed mostly back in the left lane. At 8:09 he
    passed another street. At 8:12 he moved into the right lane and slowed down, as if anticipating a turn.

    At 8:16, just as he’s getting to a cross street (7 min. 18
    sec. post explosions, and 2 min. 29 sec. after Hastings supposedly zoomed past), a male dispatcher mentioned something about “Highland at Melrose,” and Lane immediately turned right. If 7 min. 18 sec. seems too long of a delay to be
    plausible, its easily understandable, since LAPD was
    initially transferring 911 calls to the fire department, so LAPD dispatchers would not have been broadcasting them right away.

    In light of the claim that Lane was finished for the night,
    was headed home and not looking for work, the abrupt turn almost instantly with the dispatcher’s remark is suspect.

    If it had been Hastings zooming past at 5:47, assuming the
    explosion/crash was about 30 seconds later, the dispatcher would have been broadcasting the incident, after receiving and digesting 911 calls, 2 minutes or less after the incident, which does not seem plausible.

    Beginning by at least 7:55 (just over 2 min. after Hastings
    allegedly zoomed past, but actually about 7 minuets post explosions), Lane seemed like he was in a big hurry, and he was the one driving like a mad man speeding down Santa Monica.

    All surveillance video has a time stamp. So the Pizzaria
    video supplied by Krikorian and Silverton must have had the time removed. Why? And why did Krikorian completely fail to mention the times of any of the events in his article?

    Likewise, the LL dash-cam video almost certainly has time reference(s) somewhere, but LL avoided displaying them, most likely with intent to commit wire fraud at a minimum, and likely as accessories to murder.

    • Kinsey says:

      Lane got to Highland and Melrose at 10:02 in the LL video, 9 min. 4 sec. after the initial explosions at 0:58. Numerous neighbors were outside, including Raigorodsky and his hose, a Hatzolah van with at least 2 people, and the tow truck driver. But Lane avoided almost entirely interviewing anyone who was there before him, likely because their statements might not jive with the “official” cover story in the works.

      Within an hour or so, neighbor Aidle Ruggy uploaded to
      FB, “People blew up in front of our eyes.”

      And later in the day, Hanna Raigorodsky told Angie
      Crouch/Channel 4, “The car was shooting glass everywhere (animated). All the pieces of the car were going everywhere.” But their statements got little to no

      Why is the Pizzeria surveillance camera over their entrance aimed south on Highland rather than at their entrance? Perhaps Krikorian can elaborate. Is it always aimed that direction? It would be nice to see a few other videos of southbound traffic on Highland from some other dates.

    • Kinsey says:

      The reason there’s no sound of any explosions/crash 30 seconds or so after the Mercedes zooms past at 5:47 in the LL video (even though the sound of the car passing is audible), is because the explosions occurred at 0:58. They were apparently either so loud they could be heard at Santa Monica & Vista, or because Scott Lane was part of the whole scheme from start to finish and the sounds came from his computer, perhaps transmitted by someone who was at the incident.

    • Spudmuffin says:

      It’s funny that you suggest LoudLabs to be a CIA operation. I’ve watched several of their videos – there is a polish to them that belies their man on the street, “indie-news” presentation. How the LoudLabs car-cam was parked at the very gas station that Hasting’s car sped past, with their camera aimed and rolling at just that moment . . . well, it raised my eyebrows.

    • BeachN says:

      Exactly. and many of us realize that after reading the authors rendition of what happened. Just ain’t buying his BS

  16. Kinsey says:

    Alternate theory.

    Lane of LL got there in less than 4 minutes post incident (with :30 or so from the time Hastings blew light to the time of explosions). It’s hard to believe there were so many people already there and outside that quickly after waking up: 4 or 5 neighbors or more (including Raigorodsky w/hose), two Hatzolah guys with a van, and the tow truck. And Lane got there about 1:36 after the first apparent mention on the police radio and quickly turning right.

    How did everyone else get there so fast? Maybe the incident
    occurred earlier. And the red light at Melrose and the whole speeding thing was fabricated cover story.

    Listen at the 0:58 mark in the LL unedited video [4:49 prior to Hastings allegedly blowing the red light]. There are two distinct explosions close together. And there’s nothing similar on the rest of the 24-minute video. Was that the real incident? Lane turned on his headlights to leave :10 later at 1:08 – on to the next part of plan?

    With an extra 4-minutes it’s easy to understand how so many
    people were already there and outside, and how Raigorodsky already had his hose out. Witness Frankel (who lives on the east side of Highland) told Adriaen22 in an in person interview that it took LAFD 10 minutes to get there after the explosions,

    “It shook the house,” she told me. “I am still traumatized.”
    She paused and then added, “actually, there were three distinct explosions.”… “Three?”, I asked. ”Were the other two explosions as strong as that first one that shook the
    house?” She thought for a moment and answered, “No”.

    2 of the explosions seem to be heard at 0:58 in the LL video.

  17. Kinsey says:

    According to Dylan Stableford at YahooNews, the mysterious
    witness “Michael Carter,” who was sitting at Santa Monica & Highland (the Jeep in the LoudLabs video who departs just after the cab/van) as Hastings allegedly whooshed past, twice wrote of Hastings’ “white” Mercedes. First he allegedly posted on Facebook (which I cannot find):

    “Was stopped at a red light tonight when a pearl white Mercedes flew past,” Michael Carter wrote on Facebook a few hours later.

    Later, he allegedly wrote to YahooNews of the “white
    Mercedes.” Hmmm. Hastings’ Mercedes was silver.

    Anyone know anything about “Michael Carter?” Anyone know of his FB page that contains the original post?

    Or is the whole Michael Carter thing a fabrication?

    • Kinsey says:

      Smoking gun???

      The Dylan Stableford article about Michael Carter appears to be planted – by the CIA, DoD, FBI, or whomever, ala Operation Mockingbird. Deborah Davis wrote about Mockingbird and CIA infiltration of the media in “Katharine the Great” (1991):

      “By the early 1950s, [Frank] Wisner had implemented his plan and “owned” respected members of the New York Times, Newsweek, CBS, and other communications vehicles, plus stingers, four to six hundred in all, according to a former CIA analyst who worked with MOCKINGBIRD. Each journalist was a separate “operation,” required a code name, a field supervisor, and a field office, at an annual cost of tens or hundred of thousands of dollars – there has never been an accurate accounting. Some of these journalists thought of themselves as helpers of the Agency, some simply as patriots who wanted to run stories that would benefit their country. Some did not know where their information was going, or did not know that the information they received was “planted” with them. The Agency considered all of them operatives….

      Over a period of months, at the Graham salon and other meeting places, as a former Agency man who attended those meetings recalls, Wisner discussed with him which journalists were for sale and at what price (“You could get a journalist cheaper than a good
      call girl,” the former Agency man says, “for a couple of hundred dollars a month”), how to handle them, where to place them, and what sorts of stories to produce.”

      Carl Bernstein also wrote about it – ironically in “Rolling
      Stone!” (“The CIA and the Media,” Oct. 20, 1977):

      “By far the most valuable of these associations, according to CIA officials, have been with the New York Times, CBS and Time Inc…. CIA sources say flatly that a well‑known ABC correspondent worked for the Agency through 1973; they refuse to identify him. A high‑level CIA official with a prodigious memory says that the New York Times provided cover for about ten CIA operatives between 1950 and 1966….

      During the 1976 investigation of the CIA by the Senate Intelligence Committee, chaired by Senator Frank Church, the dimensions of the Agency’s involvement with the press became apparent to several members of the panel, as well as to two or three investigators on the staff. But top officials of the CIA, including former directors William Colby and George Bush, persuaded the committee to restrict its inquiry into the matter and to deliberately misrepresent the actual scope of the activities in its final report. The multivolume report contains nine pages in which the use of journalists is discussed in deliberately vague and sometimes misleading terms.”

      And CIA accountant Jim Wilcott mentioned it in his testimony to HSCA in March 1978 regarding JFK:

      “Goldsmith – How many people from the CIA did you speak to who speculated that Oswald was an agent?

      Wilcott – Dozens, literally dozens.

      Preyer – Why did you resign from the CIA?

      Wilcott – My wife and I came to believe that what CIA was doing couldn’t be reconciled to basic principles of democracy or basic principles of humanism.

      Dodd – … And when did you begin to develop attitudes of dissatisfaction with the Agency and its reaction and attitudes toward what you described as undemocratic principles and a lack of humanism?

      Wilcott – Well, actually even prior to the Kennedy assassination, my wife and I both became disturbed about the stories that we kept hearing about things, control of newspapers and so on.”

      It’s plausible that Carter could have mistaken the color of the vehicle while sitting at the stop light. However, he claimed to immediately go to the scene and watch, for quite some time. How could he possibly mistake a
      silver Mercedes for white, while standing right there observing?

      The Stableford article was likely written in advance as a
      plant, to support the script/official theory, and the author fuc*** up on the color.

      Or, perhaps Hastings did in fact have a white Mercedes, and the silver one was not his.

      Stableford likely never saw any FB post by Carter that he mentioned in the article. It doesn’t appear to exist of FB.

  18. Kinsey says:

    Ignored by most everyone have been the comments of two
    daughters of Pavel Shaul Raigorodsky and his wife Ludmilla. Shortly after the incident Aidle Ruggy posted a photo on FB via mobile phone (appears to be prior to arrival of LoudLabs) and said: “People blew up in front of our eyes.” She was referring to after they got outside, not the initial incident. And why did
    she use the plural “people?”

    And later on the 18th, in an interview with Angie Crouch/Channel 4 (with her mother standing right behind and no indication of disagreement) Hanna Raigorodsky likewise described the scene after the initial incident: “The car was shooting glass everywhere [animated]. All the pieces of the car were going everywhere.”

    During the LoudLabs video, which began at least 4:30 or more
    after the incident, there were at least 3 more explosions, mostly small but one of which caused the vehicle to bounce repeatedly, yet none of which seemed to bother anyone there. What was the car still exploding?

  19. olballcoach says:

    He wasnt in the car. Or, if he was he was reclined below the door line, restrained and wished a “good night.”

    • olballcoach says:

      I have over 40 piks passenger, back, windsheild – Nothing, not even trails, distortions or wiggles. He was probably more wide awake than he ever had been before – waiting to die.

    • BeachN says:

      It is possible he was placed in the car dead .

    • BeachN says:

      How in the heck can ya tell by looking at these photos ? lol All I see is a blur

  20. Mark Harris says:

    he was speeding so he could kill himself. The man had issues. As far as paranoid emails about being watched. I think the meth found in his system clears up that mystery. It only stays in your body a few days so if they found it ( which they did) he had used within 48 hours of his death. It is a shame. The guy was a good journalist. As far as the general story any one who thinks they are off the record talking with a writer is a bit thick as the English say.

  21. Jonathan Mark says:

    The article by Kimberly Dvorak, “CIA Director Brennan Confirmed as Reporter Michael Hastings Next Target” is quite telling, too.

  22. $25019395 says:

    My msg below seems to have been disappeared —
    Unlikely that this was an accident, just one of the many
    too convenient deaths over the last 50 years by the RW.
    Quite out in the open as though they can count on cover-ups.
    I think the key isn’t the explosion at the end, but the speed at
    the beginning. Where would he be speeding to at 4am?
    Chasing someone? Not likely. Probably very little traffic.
    And the evidence of the email. Follows the pattern of many
    other similar deaths. Deaths while stepping on the toes of the

    • Frank von Winkhorst says:

      Considering that the article mentions other vehicles ahead of Hastings, presumably traveling at normal speeds, the suggestion that he was travelling 2 or 3x their speed is, how can I say this without insulting anyone, idiotic? Oh that’s right, this must be one of them “magic cars” from the land of “magic bullets” and magic steel beams that melt like chewing gum at 300 degrees.

  23. Mike R. says:

    What mystery? He was speeding. Sometimes when people speed, they lose control of their car and crash into things. And sometimes cars that crash into things catch on fire. No conspiracy, hacking or murderous intent is needed, only a driver who doesn’t think the rules apply to him.
    Now go ahead and accuse me of being a paid shill.

    • Alchulapi says:

      you are an unpaid shill.

    • olballcoach says:

      you barter for shill.

    • mijj says:

      lol ..

      .. in other words, it was plausibly deniable 8-) .. therefore there’s nothing to see here. Move along folks.

    • Flippy says:


    • Spudmuffin says:

      Eye witnesses point out that his engine dropped out 90 ft. BEFORE the impact with a tree. That’s not a result of speeding: that’s an indication of car hackery.

      CIA asset Susan Lindauer describes an incident where she learned her car engine housing had been “modified” (weakened) without her knowledge. She luckily escaped a fatal incident.

  24. unkontrollableurge says:

    I came to the same conclusions. I think the guy scored some crack at Yucca and Wilcox, took a few hits turned on the radio, hit the gas and lost control……ruptured fuel line, sparks flying underneath, like a rolling molotov cocktail.

    • Rockosmodernlife says:

      New Mercedes dont just burst into flames, even crashing into a tree at 70 mph. Fuel lines are protected, and highly unlikely that they would be ruptured unless tampered with.

    • unkontrollableurge says:

      Tell that to Dick Van Dyke. His brand new Jag burst into flames, not even a collision,and within minutes did far worse damage to that car. Maybe Mr. van dyke was another “hit?”

    • Frank von Winkhorst says:

      Mercedes=Jaguar? Huh? Your logic meets or exceeds that of the guy who claimed that the World Trade Center could have collapsed on its own because, well, a brick building in Bangladesh just collapsed.

    • unkontrollableurge says:

      i’m not touching this

  25. Open Options says:

    Prior to this car wreck he sent an email to his peers about needing to get “off the radar”. It is just as plausible that this was him doing just that.

  26. Frank von Winkhorst says:

    The logic here escapes me. If there couldn’t have been a bomb because the car didn’t lift up, then the so-called expert is suggesting that explosions caused by bombs are somehow physically different from those caused by cars blowing up. Is it not possible to plant a bomb in the same place as his hypothetical explosion and produce exactly the same results? Is he really suggesting that car explosions do not have outward expansive force? This has all of the earmarks to me of the one-day suspension of the laws of physics we saw on September 11, 2001. I would also remind everyone here that there are those who believe that Hollywood was involved in the doctoring of the Zapruder film, so a little convenient “interpretation” is not surprising.

    • Kenneth Browning says:

      I’d love to hear what laws of physics were “suspended” on 9-11?

    • Frank von Winkhorst says:

      Inertia? The inability of the steel infrastructure to prevent collapse at freefall speed? The melting of steel beams at temperatures routinely found on fireplace grates? The symmetrical collapse of Building 7 despite the assymmetrical locations of the fires in the building? The protrusion of one of the carbon fiber noses of the airplanes from the opposite side of the building despite the presence of 47 steel core columns? The almost complete dustification of concrete, steel, office furniture, wiring, flooring, ceillings, human bodies, etc. before they ever hit the ground? The presence of molten steel at the bottom of the rubble pile for weeks after the collapse? And of course, the final nail in the coffin of the idiot sceptics, the collapse of three steel framed skyscrapers on the same day supposedly due to fire, when not even one has ever collapsed before or after that day due to even the most extensive of fires. I know, I know, a wooden building in Bangladesh just collapsed, obviously proving that any building anywhere can collapse for any reason. ;-)

    • Spudmuffin says:

      Actually, the ground beneath the WTC burned for MONTHS, not just weeks. The smell was notable for quite a distance uptown.

    • letfreedomringrh says:

      Newton’s 3 Laws of Motion were “suspended” – metaphysical laws that are the same today as they were yesterday and will be tomorrow i.e. 100 story steel and concrete buildings can’t collapse, at, or near free-fall speeds, as they meet resistance in the downward motion of the collapse.

      Newton’s 1st Law: Every object in a state of uniform motion tends to remain in that
      state of motion unless an external force is applied to it

      Note: the external force applied as the WTC 1,2 & 7 towers collapsed is the lower-floors; as the above-floors meet the floors below it the upper-floors meet resistance (external-force) slowing down the collapse – making free-fall speeds or even near free-fall speeds impossible!

      Newton’s 2nd Law: The relationship between an object’s mass m, its acceleration
      and the applied force F is
      F = ma.
      Acceleration and force are vectors (as indicated by their symbols being
      displayed in slant bold font); in this law the direction of the force
      vector is the same as the direction of the acceleration vector.

      Note: this law makes the buildings collapsing into their own foot-print impossible (particularly Bldg. 7) as all columns would need to fail at the same time i.e. to cause such-a symmetrical collapse from asymmetrical locations of the fires.

      Newton’s 3rd Law: For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.

      Note: Aluminum airplanes can’t fly into and penetrate buildings made of steel re-inforced-concrete and steel beams and columns (initially, the nose of the plane should start to fold and not penetrate the building (similar to smashing an aluminum can by smashing it into your cranium).

    • $25019395 says:

      I’ll try again — agree with you re 9/11 — and also
      H’wood and Apollo 11, imo.
      I don’t know a lot about car bombs, but I thought they
      went off when you turned the engine on — or when
      you actually moved the car?
      There may have been some explosive set to ensure
      that any accident would result in death by fire if not
      death due to the accident?

    • Frank von Winkhorst says:

      Blasting cap? Radio transmitter? Button? Boom?

      You may want to watch the episode of a recent This Old House in Essex, Massachusetts, where they remove some ledge from the front yard with dynamite. Then imagine the dynamite under somebody’s car. This ain’t rocket science, fellah.

  27. Acer8104 says:

    I heard he was working on a big story of CIA and Brennan.

  28. De Grijze Duif says:

    A Different perspective by Adriaen22

    Michael Hastings Surveillance Tape!!!

  29. j c says:

    Who.what LIE!…uh,yeah,I want to “donate” to you….so you can give us all the news others wont…..Just like the rest,slag off loser news site

  30. James Madison says:

    “New surveillance video and statistics raise odds of foul play in Hastings death”

    This one shows the car exploding. NOT ‘catching fire.” Exploding.

  31. olballcoach says:

    Okay – my OCD flared up this morning (I know, bring it on) and I spent a couple hours watching the clip below and double right clicking” between :8 and :9. There is background lighting in front of the pharmacy and 20 or so feet down the street. The lighting is vertical and bright enough to shine through the window of the Mercedez. I have blown my view up to 400% and I full screened Utube. I have focused on this segment looking for what can be seen from the back ground light through the window. I cant find a driver. I dont know how to screen shot this – so you will have to give it try. My initial thought was, if I was driving that fast, I’d be seated like a race driver – arms locked, head against rest – fully alert. All I see through the back window and passenger side window is the light from the pharmacy store sign. Just throwing it out there for someone else to verify or see otherwise.

    • SO says:

      I couldn’t get the car to stop in the perfect spot, that nice bright rectangle by the pharmacy door. And I couldn’t download this video to work in any other viewer or my editor. But, I think I have come up with a sighting of the driver against the brick wall.

    • olballcoach says:

      kind of an odd angle – almost a two dimensional view of a look from behind and to the right. And what is the bright spot just ahead of your arrow – that does not show on the video. I know the idea we could make anything out of this video is a kin to watching clouds – but I have landed on that bright white sign and it keeps coming up blank. What I cant get is the front the windshield. Why Lets say for some reason he pushed his seat as far forward and is leaning above or over the sterring wheel. Its possible, so I dont discount it – but I cannot confirm either way. But I am sure the full passenger side window is legit empty and I have gotten pretty good now pulling it up.

      How do I screen shot a utube vid and I will post it?

    • SO says:

      There’s a button on your keyboard upper right area called “Print Dcrn.” When you have the picture you want on screen, hit that button. Your screen capture will then be copied and ready to paste in a photo editing program or even Microsoft Paint. Then you can crop and save the file, and post it here.

    • SO says:


    • olballcoach says:

      Rats – not happening on this keyboard – I ask my kids for help when they get home later. btw – just pulled up another shot – this time the front windsheild is in front of the second sign out front – and I can make out the rear view mirror and maybe a light or two on the dash board. Still no definitive “head” shot.

    • olballcoach says:

      Just pulled another shot maybe 6 feet before yours (because the sign is visible through his back window) and there is a distinct light come from the dash board, below the rear view mirror. Traveling 80+ mph and he has a reading light on? And, since the screen shots get more blurry (and difficult to capture) as he crosses into view wouldnt this indicate he is speeding up?

    • SO says:

      I think he appears to speed up simply because he is passing in front of the camera’s field of view. Naturally, when something is approaching and receding, it seems slower than when it passes in front of you.

    • De Grijze Duif says:

      To make a screenshot use “ctrl”+”prt scrn”. Then paste that into a new file in a photo editor.

    • SO says:

      This won’t convince you, but this one is just slightly before my other one, contrast and brightness adjusted. It looks like there probably is a head there.

    • SO says:

      Of course, when you can’t see the roof of the car, it might be futile to argue about whether the head is there.

    • Goony says:

      If it is a head it’s reclined fairly steeply. Could the bright light in dash be some kind of monitor for a camera? Someone posted that a minivan was half a mile in front of the car.

    • olballcoach says:

      Honestly, I cant make heads or tails of this one. But I have stopped that car in front of those background and lights – and I dont even see the head rest from several different vantage points.

    • cornz says:

      press CTRL ALT PrntSCRN
      then paste into paint

    • olballcoach says:

      Whadyaknow – the still above is about the best side pik (albeit much closer) – I could get to – from the pik below Hastings should be sitting about smack dab in the middle of that window silhouette by light the light from the sign behind him.

    • Frank von Winkhorst says:

      Do we really need more of this analysis of minutiae? It seems to me that at this point in the evolution of the American Reich, it is up to the idiot “skeptics” to try to prove that Hastings was NOT eliminated for his attempt to divulge something ELSE the intelligence services didn’t want disclosed. And let me just say this. Considering that these folks have been implicated in the assassination of a president, the murder of 3000 Americans on 9/11, and all manner of other “operations” and “dirty tricks,” one has to wonder just what these folks could possibly be so afraid of that is so much worse than these that even their immoral selves are ashamed of it.

    • olballcoach says:

      yes we do. I know he isnt in the car. Now I dont waste my time on about 1/2 the possible narratives. The grandest conspiracies are built detail by detail by exquiste detail. Now run along.

  32. David Lange says:

    I would consider PTSD as a component, as journalists suffer also. Also, at 4:30 AM in the car crazed LaLa Land of L.A. the bizarre and berserk often happen at high speed.

  33. Hank says:

    Why was he driving so fast? H was probably on drugs

    • SO says:

      If he was on drugs, the LAPD will certainly tell us. Maybe even if he wasn’t. Somebody, apparently, has cremated the body, so who will ever know?

    • Skyp Wyth says:

      Yes. He was cremated without the express consent of the family. Illegal and very suspicious.

  34. De Grijze Duif says:

    Has anybody seen the video yet? I sure havent…

    Without this, the complete article of Krikorian is utter speculation.

    Its absurd that people quote this article over and over. Its absurd there is a stage offered for such nonsens and ridicule. Perhaps its a mistake by to offer this stage, or perhaps they have seen the video themselves. but with claims like this, having a live video about Hastings’ crash, and needless to say the minutes and hours before and after the crash!, You better putt your money where your mouth is.

    It would be bloody awesome if these videos were available.

    Perhaps things like what was his speed? Perhaps earlier fire under the car, that eyewitness Jose talks about.? Was he being followed? Heaps of facts to sent loads of conspiracy arguments to the graveyard. And that is to the utmost importance.

    As long as we see no video, this article is worth less then nothing.

    • olballcoach says:

      1. that is one shakey surveillance, it looks like its inside so it cant be wind. Why is it swaying?
      2. not sure if it is the shaking camera or what; but down at the “vanishing point” something in the shadows a feint light appears to move?
      3. it looks like he was starting to lose it at the street light to the right, a slight right and then a slight correction, at that speed eased him over the median at .14/.15 – and it looks like he could have run over the water main that is 25 ft out.
      4. At .16 it looks like a flat flash erupts across the back of the car (above its described as a spark – I think its a bit more than a spark) and then the lights go out – or he is sideways, and at .17 the first of three distinct flares of light only seconds apart – the second being the big kaboom.

      Why did the lights go out? If he is sideways, then the impact could not have ejected that engine – wrong angle. It’s still not very likely anyway, but in order to get the kind of lift necessary to get that engine to pop out of the car and have the velocity to carry it that far – it would have had to have been a head on or nearly head on crash. That should be simple to see, the lights should have stayed on into the crash and meld into the first flare.
      Very curious, indeed.

    • olballcoach says:

      Another thing, I just looked over that Pizza house and I see the orange awning matches the video – but where on the inside could you get a camera that has that window to the street? I don’t see it on Google street view. I guess it could have been remodeled since the google maps photo – does anyone know?

      And lastly – from this story at LA Weekly “Hastings’ family has told Rolling Stone that they do not believe he was assassinated. “I don’t believe it’s a conspiracy,” his brother Jeff Hastings said. “There’s no part of me that’s troubled by that.” As someone down thread correctly pointed out – until the wife makes a comment, its BS to assume anything from family at this point.

    • Adriaen22 says:

      There are 3 security cameras at Mozza. All 3 are the same kind and they are not subject to wind. These 3 cameras are completely stationary and relatively small. They are also covered by small domes (miniature versions of the “eye in the sky” cameras in Vegas casinos that you see on the ceilings over the gambling tables). The camera that captured the crash is located in the corner of the main entrance on Highland. The awning pretty well hides it unless you stand under the awning and look up. I find it odd that a camera that is installed over the main door is not actually trained on the main door…it’s trained on Highland south bound. Hmmm

    • j45 says:

      Looks to me like this video was played back on a flat screen and hand held copied.

      Look at the picture on the upper left. You see the edge of a flat screen and color to the left of it.

      Obviously the playback was captured with a camera handheld.

      What puzzles me is that if all the light from the car is headlights, even at that last second before impact if the car made a radical shift sideways (orientation of the car, not the path it was taking) then we would still see light from the headlights lighting up something at some angle or at least taillights.

      In other words if the car at the last second, say running over those pipes or mounting center median, did a radical sideways twist, would we for a second not see the light from those headlights aiming in the path, or would we see at the sides of the path for a second, the light from those headlights.

      It does see that the cars electrical system went total blackout just before the impact. Strange.

    • SO says:

      If the car’s engine left when it hit the pipes, it would almost certainly take the electrical connections with it. Or, whenever the engine left. I think that hitting the pipe probably somehow ripped the engine out. Hitting the tree wouldn’t do that, and I don’t see why the murderers would want to, either, unless it was to provide an explanation as to how gasoline got into the cabin, perhaps. Ripping the engine out would inevitably rupture a fuel line. If there was no video showing the explosions and fire, it might be believable.

    • olballcoach says:

      If the engine ejects at the pipe (downthread some measured from tree to broken pipe is 25 feet) the lift and velocity needed to carry that 300+ lb engine is reaching mythical proportions.

    • SO says:

      O, what’s another few feet? Are we sure the engine flew all the way through the air? Perhaps it skidded. I can’t see from 3,000 miles away.

    • olballcoach says:

      Another 25 feet puts it over 200 feet. It ended up on the sidewalk having jumped a 12″ storm drain. No visible damage to lawn(s) or scrape marks on the street. It had to land bounce or roll up that curb. The Mercedez spec say that engine weighs 300 lbs and the drive train? Another 100 or so. Again its getting mythical.

    • SO says:

      I understand the point in the article about the camera’s automatic exposure exaggerating the flash, but that still is quite a sudden and large explosion of fire. How anybody can say definitively that that is not a bomb, is beyond me. And, to give any credence to the idea that the brake lights came on there, as is done in the article, seems silly to me. That is a very quick flash, much quicker than what I think would be an application of the brakes at this point. That flash dies down before the lights go out. It would be nice to see a little more of the video, too, to give us some frame of reference regarding the initial intensity of the fire. The LOUDLABS video, I think, starts a couple minutes later.

    • olballcoach says:

      loudlabs starts several minutes later – and those are no brake lights – that is a back of the vehicle wide flash (to argue brake lights is disingenuine) and then dark for an instant and then the first flare which goes wide and the second flare which is almost straight up and the third which is similar to the first.

    • SO says:

      One point to note, for me anyway, is that when the car’s lights go out, for that moment, there is no apparent light coming from the car. This seems to put to rest the idea that the car was on fire before it crashed. Also note, as can be seen in my composite picture, insert 5, the first explosion seems to occur behind the car from this perspective, presumably the passenger side, and the next explosion hides the car, and presumably occurred on the driver’s side.

    • Skyp Wyth says:

      I’ve seen it. Its available on YouTube. It seemed as if the car was on fire before it hit and it exploded as if it had been packed with dynamite.

    • john says:

      Do you know how to use google search?

  35. SO says:

    If you read Michael Hastings; account from 2008 of his covering the 2008 presidential primary campaign here you will see that he is well-acquainted with the technique of extracting information from liquored-up campaign staffers. These were professional politicians running for president, who, of course, did not join the journalists themselves all juiced-up and blabbering. McChrystal was not a politician, with an experienced staff on hand to entertain the reporters. Hastings’ trip on that bus really amounts to spying on McChrystal, and shows, I think, a shocking lack of honor. Are not the general and his staff entitled to their private thoughts? It was probably shocking to McChrystal that his presumed private comments had been exploited in such a way. It’s easy to blame McChrystal for allowing this to happen, but I think Hastings showed very poor judgement in exploiting them the situation. He could done his job more subtly, and not put Obama in the position where he had no choice but to sack McChrystal. The general wasn’t fired for what they said. He was fired because what they said appeared in Rolling Stone.

    • De Grijze Duif says:

      I think its good that you do research. But be carefull on what you write. Because what you are doing is a personal attack on Hastings, a first class fallacy… The case here, is that somebody died in a car accident. The situation surrounding his death raise questions, and sincs he was one of the rare journalists daring to speak out against the establishement it gets more attention. Regular reseach has proven to be lacking in the past, so civilians pick up this task. Questions are raised and anwers searched. So if you would like to check on the relationship between Hastings and Biggs, thats cool. Its all in the open to check, so feel free. If you get something usefull, in relation to Hastings’death, out of this private investigation its nice when you would share that with us. But in the end the twitter story is not that usefull at all. I mean, i have a twitter account, some of my best friends do, butt we never use it to communicate to each other. Mostly we call, email and even talk and meet. But twitter? No. Does it tell you anything about the relationship and my twitter contacts? Nope. So in itself the twitter history between them two is of no importance at all.

      Your next personal opinion about his way of reseach and writing, wel… lets just say it is irrelavant to the Hastings case. But perhaps there is a point you wanted to make, but i missed it. So until that time i see it as an argument ad hominem.

    • SO says:

      You may see it any way you like, but I think the best way to understand things is to get as much relevant information as possible. This story here has a subtitle, “Stanley Got Him.” It seems to me that if he wronged somebody named Stanley that that might perhaps speak to possible motive.

    • De Grijze Duif says:

      “a shocking lack of honor”, “showed very poor judgement in exploiting them the situation” and “could done his job more subtly” refer to Hastings and have nothing to do with an alleged motive for McChrystal. I think the book itself and the sack offer enough motive. So the personal attacks on Hastings add no relevant information at all… That was an Ad hominem for sure…

    • SO says:

      It has everything to do with a possible motive. It is far more believable that somebody would be motivated to kill him if he had good reason to be upset. It’s one thing to say true bad stuff about somebody, and it’s another to betray him. Face it. Hastings exploited a drunken bus ride to make a name for himself and to sell McChrystal down the river. If somebody had done that to me, I’d want to kill him. And his first book, “I Lost My Love In Baghdad,” if the NYT book review is correct, sets the tone for this man, Hastings. I don’t think he was a very nice fellow, and that makes it easier for people to hate him, and kill him. Of course, a “good” motive is not a justification, and I want to see his murderers brought to justice.

    • Adriaen22 says:

      In looking for a motive, you will probably find dozens of people who had a motive. Motive alone is not nearly enough. JFK assassination research is still ongoing 50 years later. All that we have is a long list of people with motive. It might be more useful to take note of the people who are threatening reporters who are looking into Hastings’ crash. That would be DHS. It helps to narrow down the field

    • jimmy corn says:

      first of all, you have no idea what your talking about! The only reason hastings was with McCrystal and his crew was to write his book and they knew that. If you ACTUALLY read the book or did your research you would know that hastings made it clear to McCrystal and his crew that he was going to put everything in the book and they mention it over and over in the book sometimes joking about it. The reason hastings doesn’t drink is not to catch the general and his staff and smear them when they are drunk. Its because he hasn’t drank in 10 years because last time he drank he blacked out…….(read the book). The staff knew he didn’t drink so stop with your non-sense bullsh** trying to smear Hastings! Also one of the staff from McCrystal threatened to kill Hastings. So honorable is McCrystal and his staff huh……

    • SO says:

      If you say so.

  36. SO says:

    I was curious about the Biggs/Hastings relationship, and when I noticed that they both had Twitter accounts, I went to read their tweets. I think the only time they communicated on Twitter was when Hastings released his book, “The Operators,” in which Biggs apparently played some small role. In the tweets, Hastings calls Biggs a true hero, and Biggs calls Hastings, “buddy.” Other than that, Biggs’ tweets are mostly humorous and crude one-liners tweeted to nobody in particular.

  37. SO says: A review from April 20, 2008, of Hastings’ book, “I Lost My Love In Baghdad.” His love, Andi Parhamovich, died in Iraq on January 17, 2007. This NYT book review states,

    One senses that the war story, conveying an experience that consumed Michael Hastings during a crucial period in his mid-20s, is the book he really wanted to write. It is better written, more vividly rendered, more intensely felt. The love story is told with greater insistence and less conviction, without memorable passages or surprising recognitions. It accounts for the embarrassing title and the whiff of exploitation that hangs over “I Lost My Love in Baghdad.”

    Just sayin’.

  38. SO says:

    From here, McChrystal had to get to Berlin by bus. Hastings says McChrystal and his aides were drinking on the road trip “the whole way.” “They let loose,” he said. “I don’t blame them; they have a hard job.” Hastings says most of the critical comments, which are now causing a stir, were said in the first 24 hours or so. “It wasn’t a case of charming him into anything,” Hastings said.

    No, it wasn’t a case of charming him, or anything. It was a case of quoting him while he was drinking with his buddies.

  39. sistercarrie says:

    “This fact, that a car is not a simple machine of glass and steel but a hackable network of computers, is what Miller and Valasek have spent the last year trying to demonstrate. Miller, a 40-year-old security engineer at Twitter, and Valasek, the 31-year-old director of security intelligence at the Seattle consultancy IOActive, received an $80,000-plus grant last fall from the mad-scientist research arm of the Pentagon known as the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency to root out security vulnerabilities in automobiles.”

    • Mr. Galileo says:

      Barnaby Jack from the same security firm, IOActive, died on Thursday.

      “He had been due to give a presentation into medical device vulnerabilities at the Black Hat security conference in Las Vegas taking place next week.

      He had said one technique could kill a man from 30 feet (nine metres) away.”

  40. SO says:

    Can we even be sure that Hastings died in the crash. If the LAPD has cremated the body, I guess we just have to take their word for it. Just for fun, image the possibility that a John Doe cadaver was placed behind the wheel. This whole thing could be a staged event designed to intimidate journalists, kinder and gentler than actually murdering anybody. I’m not saying that it was, but the paucity of facts makes me wonder.

    • donfarkas says:

      Even if it turns out to be confirmed that Hastings’ body was cremated against the wishes of his family, there are no facts supporting the statement that the LAPD was responsible for doing that. The Coroner’s office stated that they routinely released Hastings’ body to the family’s selected mortuary after completing their autopsy and after making their official identification of the body as being that of Michael Hastings based on using FBI fingerprint records. As the L.A. County Coroner’s office probably does not have facilities or policies to cremate bodies, then I would imagine the unauthorized cremation would have most likely come about because of some either intentional or negligent action or error on the part of the mortuary. It does seem unusual, however, that the family has not issued any comment to confirm or deny the assertion of Hastings’ wrongful cremation, which makes me feel frightened for them.

      I agree with your underlying point, however, that the circumstances of this kind incident involving having to completely trust the veracity of the FBI’s supplied fingerprints for identification of the body that was burned beyond recognition, followed by irretrievable destruction of the body by cremation, could conceivably become a scenario allowing a person to be kidnapped in an extraordinary rendition for interrogation without anyone even knowing.

    • SO says:

      Perhaps I went too far to blame the LAPD for cremation. Thank you for correcting me. I consider it unknown, at present, who decided to cremate. I hate to cite the Alex Jones thing, but they quote a witness to the removal of the body as saying only the head was burned, that he could see the “white arms” of a young man about 30 being removed from the car. Aside from indicating that this witness is an gifted observer of arms, if true, it would mean that the LAPD could have matched the fingerprints. It is hard to imagine that fire not charring every bit of flesh in the car, but if the fire did come out of the top of the door, as the photography suggests to me, then perhaps it is possible.

    • Adriaen22 says:

      Ask yourself a question…you saw the footage of the car burning, I assume. How in God’s name do you sit in a car burning white hot (which is roughly 2400 degrees F) for approx 20 minutes and still have any flesh left to fingerprint? Do you know any brand of clothing that you can buy that can withstand 2400 degrees? Yet the woman is describing his shirt. And do you realize that the body goes into full rigor mortis between 3 and 4 hours following death? The body stayed in the car for just under four hours. So how do you get white arms that you can pull on to rotate the body if it’s stiff as a board with legs and knees frozen in a seated position? You can’t. Anybody in that kind of inferno isn’t still wearing pants, doesn’t have a wallet tucked in their back pocket with a driver license that you can read.

  41. SO says:

    Supposedly, there’s some lawyer with all the information about Hastings’ “biggest story yet.” I hope we get to see that stuff, because, from my perspective as a nobody, this death is curiously void of final details. Hastings’ twitter posting end on June 12. I haven’t heard anybody say anything about anything he did on his last day, except the “off the radar” email and the Wikipedia email. There’s no way to know he was even responsible for sending those. The only Hastings camp spokesman is an army Sargent. And his wife seems to have been employed by the ISAF, whose commander was a certain General Stanley A. McChrystal. McChrystal, it seems, has been the boss of both Biggs and Hastings’ wife, and the “Hastings side of the story” has come only from them. I’m glad there’s some independent photography here, or I wouldn’t have any sure footing on this event at all.

  42. Zenue Balaba says:


  43. Greybeard says:

    The description of the events on the security video, as given in the article, suggest to me that he was driving at high speed because he was being chased by another vehicle, lost control and hit the tree. No mention was made in the article about vehicles that may have passed the camera after Hastings vehical passed, if in fact any did pass.
    Rigging the electronics of a Mercedes to be remote controlled is quite sophisticated and, to my knowledge, not easily or quickly done except in Hollywood movies.

    • Toy Pupanbai says:

      Princess Diana?

    • donfarkas says:

      The Youtube video of the DARPA “High Assurance Systems Program Manager,” Dr. Kathleen Fisher, describes how a car’s Electronic Control Unit (ECU) can now be fairly easily hacked to have things like throttle and brakes ignore driver’s input. Cyber-terrorism expert, Richard Clarke, also noted that the details of Hastings’ crash were “consistent with” a cyber attack on Hastings’ car’s electronics.

  44. Cephas says:

    No big deal, Folks. Get used to people disappearing or blown up because this is just the beginning and we haven’t seen anything yet. The U.S. is about to make living in China look like a picnic; because, people never woke up to the facts of 9/11. Americans allow themselves to be the most entertained and least informed people on this planet. Educate yourself: 911truth(dot)org.

    Here’s the deal, the guy was murdered just like those folks on 9/11 by folks here at home or The Terrorists. Americans are living in a Plutocratic Dictatorship run by a bunch of Satanists. Representatives are all bought and paid for. What Americans and the world are witnessing are the Fruits of September 11, 2001. They’re all anti-christs in Washington. The MSM tv is an illusion run by Satanists too: political, financial, and corporate elitists, they all worship Satan. “You’re either with us, or your with the Terrorists.” -GW Bush. The only problem with that GW saying is the “Us” part. Because the “Us” part *are* the Terrorists! Duhh. ;)
    Turn off your tv and set up camp at Globalresearch (dot) org if you know what’s good for you and the rest of the planet.
    Good Luck.

    Matt. 10:14

    • Toy Pupanbai says:

      Certainly the G.W.Bush saying does pose a paradox.

      Senator Paul Wellstone. R.I.P.!

    • Skyp Wyth says:

      Yours is by far the most true and salient comment on this post. Kudos & thanks for the courage to speak out.

  45. Peanutcat says:

    So where’s this video?

  46. aaronbbrown says:

    Hard to believe that this story was written by a journalist, what are you like 19 years old? I read Hastings in Rolling Stone, and it was a joke, Little more than a Pandering puff piece, that only an uninformed person who hadn’t read Any Genuinely good reporting in the last 30 years would describe as longform journalism. There was virtually nothing in his writings about what really went on in Afghanistan, no revelations in regards to the atrocities committed by the US military. Pretty obvious to anyone who’s been around the block more than once, that McChrystal. and his people were using Hastings, manipulating him. They put the words in his mouth That they wanted him to say, and he published them. That’s what happens when child get involved with Covert ops people whose entire existence And survival is predicated on manipulation and deception. Stanley McChrystal wanted to go after Obama, and he used Hastings to do it. Just a little political parting shot before his retirement. No wonder journalism is in such a sad state in America, The young people going into it these days are little more than naïve children Who are way out of their league, including the writer of this article

    • N. Furthermore says:

      McChrystal’s arrogance was a legitimate news topic and Hastings exposed it. You might be right that McChrystal and his buddies were trying to use Hastings to undermine Obama, but the end result was a blemish on McChrystal’s previously sterling public image. Maybe it wasn’t Hastings who was in over his head.

    • SO says:

      I don’t know if it’s so easy to say what the end result is. On the public record, the end result is that McChrystal was disgraced, but the public record also says that lone nut Oswald shot JFK. There’s more to this than the public record. I don’t know about all that stuff. The surest thing here, to me, is that Hastings’ car crash was not an accident.

  47. ShirlB says:

    My first reaction to this piece, the introduction and the actual article, was “Who are these people?” This is not the kind of reporting usually seen on WhoWhatWhy. Russ has urged readers to reserve judgment until more facts are available. The value of that advice is borne out by Trust the Gov’t, who reminds us that there was a DHS drill running parallel to the Boston Marathon. Russ has also discussed the “conspiracy theory” syndrome–a product of Allen Dulles’ “Mighty Wurlitzer”–at length. All of the reporting on this event uses the “C” word solo or paired with theory. Maybe some brave person will eventually substitute connive, collude, and criminal or craven cooperation.

    Thanks to brux, who was the first to ask “Link to the videotape of the accident please?” [still missing today, July 20] and to JIM, who provided this link

    By backing up to the first San Diego 6 report on July 8 one gets a coherent narrative and hyperlinks to all of the relevant background material. That includes the text of Hastings’ last e-mail:

    It was SSgt. Biggs who released the following chilling email to members of the media. “Subject: FBI Investigation, re: NSA -Hey (redacted names) – the Feds are interviewing my “close friends and associates.” Perhaps if the authorities arrive “BuzzFeed GQ,” er HQ, may be wise to immediately request legal counsel before any conversations or interviews about our news gathering practices or related journalism issues. Also: I’m onto a big story, and need to go off the rada[r] for a bit. All the best, and hope to see you all soon. Michael”

    Readers also learn that “An eyewitness at the scene, Jose, employed at nearby business ALSCO Inc said, the car was travelling very fast and he heard a couple explosions shortly before the car crashed.” Further, “The 2013 Mercedes Hastings drove that fateful night in June is equipped with MBRACE (emergency call system), SOS telephone and the Voice Control System.”

    Where had Hastings been and where was he going when he had the accident? If the people on his group list haven’t disappeared into bolt holes, perhaps they could shed some light on that.

    Back to “Who are these people?”:
    The author of the intro seems to be primarily a true crime writer.

    As for Michael Kirkorian, the article below is in the same style as his essay on the Hastings crash. The incident occurred at his girlfriend’s home.

    This recent piece provides some insight into his personality and puts the implication that Hastings was a drunk and reckless driver into the “pot calls the kettle black” category.

    As for what Krikorian has written here, a close reading of the conclusion is rewarding.

    [Exasperated, Hasting threw up his hands, gave his unique smirk and proclaimed, “I’ve spent more time in Iraq than you have, man.”

    Hastings went on to chide Kimmit for profiting off the war in the private sector. “I’m glad the general was able to make money off his services,” he said.

    In that TV vignette, I could see why a guy like Hastings would piss off the military brass and would be so admired by fellow journalists.

    I hope that someone will be able to explain why Hastings’s Mercedes was speeding like a silver bullet. Maybe the answer will show up in the toxicology results. I know this much: American journalism has lost a pit bull of an investigative reporter.]

    Shove in a stiletto and end with a pat on the back. The technique reminds me of former NYT editor Bill Keller’s intro to the PubIt e-book Open Secrets: Wikileaks, War, and American Diplomacy. It’s a Barnes & Noble exclusive and a steal at $5.99 for what it reveals about the “paper of record.” Despite Keller’s disclaimer, the cables are a revealing window into what our “gummint” would prefer we didn’t know.

    Krikorian also writes, “I showed the video to Scott E. Anderson, an Academy Award-winning visual effects supervisor with Digital Sandbox who has engineered explosions for many films.”

    Anderson is qualified as described but why pick someone who specializes in faking explosions as a source?

    That the investigation is being handled by the LAPD, which spectacularly dropped the ball on two of the highest profile cases of the twentieth century–the assassination of Senator Robert Kennedy and the Manson family murders–doesn’t inspire confidence.

    Finally, here’s one of many examples of “the no foul play” scenario whose true nature was revealed in 2011 after five decades of obfuscation:

    A fresh international inquiry is to be opened into the mysterious 1961 plane crash that killed the UN secretary general Dag Hammarskjöld following the emergence of new evidence over the past year.

    A Guardian investigation in August 2011 and a book [by Susan Williams] published the following month both pointed to witness testimony that the plane was shot down over British-ruled Northern Rhodesia, now Zambia, possibly by western mercenaries, and that the assassination was covered up by the colonial authorities.

    There was also a Congo connection to the assassination of John Kennedy, one of Russ’s primary focus areas.

    “Wanted For Treason” flyer created by Robert Surrey, an associate of Major General Edwin Walker. This original flyer was one of about 5,000 distributed in downtown Dallas a day or two prior to the Kennedy assassination. These handbills were placed on car windshields and tucked inside the racks of the two Dallas daily newspapers by anti-Kennedy propagandists.

    Zoom in to read the text under President Kennedy’s mug shots. Here’s an excerpt from point 1:

    . . . “He is betraying our friends (Cuba, Kantanga, Portugal)”

    Kantanga was and is the most mineral rich part of Congo and Hammarskjold’s intended destination when his plane was shot down.

    In conclusion, an excerpt from Tim Hardin’s love song, “A Reason to Believe” seems appropriate:

    “If I listened long enough to you, I’d find a way to believe that it’s all true.
    Even knowing, that you lied straight-faced while I cried.
    Still I look to find a reason to believe.”

    The national security state has given us no reason to believe it ever again.

  48. SO says:

    “Bush Official John P. Wheeler Murder Case Deepens”
    That’s a headline from January 6, 2011. It sounds much like the headline to this article, the “mytery deepens…” I guess it is being written off, now. Might as well bury Michael Hastings alongside John Wheeler.

  49. SO says:

    They will get away with this because, even if I’m right about the dent not being the side intrusion beam, which of course I think I am, this is something that can be endlessly argued about, just like details of the JFK assassination. It takes an honest investigation by the authorities to settle this for the public, and that won’t happen if the authorities are the perps. I don’t think they mind that I know, or that anybody else who studies this knows. They just don’t want the general public to know. Michael Hastings is a good illustration of the state of affairs. McChrystal didn’t mind Hastings knowing what he thought about Obama. He probably didn’t mind Obama knowing, either. The problem was that Hastings told John Q. Public, and that they do mind. The public must be fools, else their game is over. They need not worry. Does anybody remember John Wheeler? I thought not. In a few years Michael Whosie will be forgotten and some new atrocity will befuddle us. Might as well sell the soap.

  50. SO says:

    Here is a diagram of a Mercedes C-Class door, showing the side intrusion bar put above the Hastings car showing the apparent dent in the door. I don’t think that dent is the side intrusion bar.

    • SO says:

      No. That’s the S-Class. I can’t find the C-Class. I bet it’s similar. And, why would a side intrusion bar make such an impression, anyway? An impact from the outside wouldn’t do that.

    • SO says:

      his is the only picture I can find of a Mercedes 250C body structure diagram. It’s the 2012, and if this is what was in Hastings’ door, then the dent certainly is not the side intrusion beam.

    • Don Farkas says:

      Thank you for pointing out the issue of this strange apparent dent in the driver’s side door.

      Can you or anyone offer an explanation of what looks like two small, elongated holes torn into the metal of the passenger side door? They can be visualized from some angles in the Loudlabs video because of the brighter light of the fire inside the car’s cabin area shining through the apparent holes. The white sheet that was placed over the right front side of the car by the investigators covers them in the photos that were released of the wrecked car in the daytime.

    • Don Farkas says:

      The two apparent small, elongated holes in the passenger side door can first be seen in the 5:32 minute long Loudlabs video starting at about 0:54 seconds and lasting until about 0:59 seconds.

    • SO says:

      I can’t see them well-enough to even be sure they are holes, and not some kind of reflections. But they do look like clear-through holes. The camera guy has annoying zoom habits. Holes there would suggest, in my opinion, an explosion inside the car. r.

    • donfarkas says:

      Yes, I suppose it might be some kind of reflection, but It is difficult to think of what could possibly be reflecting like that on the outside of the car’s door opposite of where the fire is burning. The brightness of the light seems to match the intensity of the light that can be seen burning above through the car door’s window frame. Thanks for checking it out and offering your impression.

      Another nagging question that has been bothering me: Is it expected in such high speed car crashes and fires that all the windows of the entire car will be completely gone as appears to have happened in this case?

      Whether or not my impression is correct that all of the car’s windows were gone in this case, it would still be interesting to know where the broken window glass fragments were found dispersed in the debris field. That might possibly serve as forensic evidence of whether or not the car’s broken window glass fragments were dispersed by inertia in an expected pattern caused by the crash, or whether they were instead propelled into other unexpected trajectories, such as might happen by being blown out by some kind of explosive event occurring inside or outside of the vehicle?

      The apparent refusal of the police to release any details or comments about their investigation concerning such a suspicious crash seems to also be a kind of evidence in my opinion.

    • SO says:

      I agree about the location of the glass. But I won’t trust any LAPD report, and independent sources haven’t said anything about that, so far as I know, so it may be too late to know where the glass left the car. Also, the Spanish-speaking witness in the LOUDLABS video seemed to say that there was fire before the impact, and yet, in a later translated interview he does not say this, at least not in translation. That would be good to clarify.

    • SO says:

      I think that is actually paint burning on the outside of the door. I just noticed that at beginning of the video, the camera first passes by the driver’s door, and there are three big distinct flame areas, at the edge of what later can be seen as the paint burn pattern. It must be that it was so hot that the paint itself was in flames.

    • olballcoach says:

      only an inside accelerant can do what is pictured here, and nothing inside the vehicle comes close to being an inside accelerant.

    • SO says:

      I think that idea is supported by the towering flame coming out of the driver’s door window opening visible in the wider angle view of that moment.

    • donfarkas says:

      That seems a very plausible explanation. A good forensic question is: How hot would the fire have to be burning inside of the car to cause the paint on the outside of the door to ignite?

    • SO says:

      The door is a metal shell. In some ways, it would act as an insulator, at least from immediate heat inside the car. Of course, metal conducts heat very efficiently, so the door could be expected to heat up quickly. But, the burn pattern on the door suggest, in my non-professional opinion, that the heat source was inside the door, because it seems to spread out from the top middle area. But, perhaps the naked flame coming out the window supplied enough heat. Also, a blaze like that would create a big draft, drawing air up from outside the door, and probably mostly from the front of the car where the engine was ripped out. This would have a cooling effect on anything updraft of the fire, and might explain why fingerprints were obtainable.

    • SO says:

      The fire coming out of the door, as I think it did, would actually allow all of these statements to be true: The body (or face, at least) was burned beyond recognition. Fingerprints from the FBI were matched. The body pulled from the car had unburned white arms. Also, all those statements being true would tend to invalidate the idea that the fire came from gasoline from a ruptured fuel tank or a gas line under the car. It’s still possible that a fuel line from the engine compartment might have fed an elevated fire.

  51. Anonymous says:

    I’m going to go out on a limb here and just say this… if I were a dark lord I would just have him killed with an undetectable method, put him in his car, and then remote drive it into a palm tree at 80 mph. That’s plausible given the situation.

    • olballcoach says:

      Now, I have argued, based on what I know and have learned of head on or near head on collision crashes, that Hastings vehicle looks like a vehicle that has sustained damages that show the earmarks of a vehicle involved in a crash going in 75-85 mph range. How did you arrive at your assertion?

  52. Ed says:

    There are no skid marks from braking because the car comes standard with very good antilock brakes, which prevent the wheels from locking under even the heaviest of panic braking and producing skidmarks… so the lack of skidmarks proves nothing at all. That rectangular pattern in the driver door is the thick side intrusion beam behind the thin door skin, required by Federal side impact safety standards. This car uses high pressure gasoline direct injection, with working fuel line pressures of 3,000 psi. Rupturing the fuel line would spray gas out rapidly for at least a short time, and any car going that fast will have very very hot exhaust system parts, particularly the catalytic converter and/or exhaust manifold, which can be in excess of 1,600 degrees. Even antifreeze will burn if it gets hot enough by being sprayed on a hot catalyst. Furthermore, nearly the entire interior is made of flammable petroleum-based materials, including plastic, synthetic rubber and foam. They burn up real good even if you don’t hit a big, solid palm tree at extremely high speed…, just look at youtube for “car fire”.

    • olballcoach says:

      well thank you for that, but nobody was arguing or questioning those points. Anything else?

    • SO says:

      I haven’t been able to find a diagram for the 250C, but every side intrusion beam I can find spans the entire width of the door. The apparent dent in Hastings’ car is only half the length, with very well-defined edges. I think it is unlikely to be the side intrusion beam, though it’s orientation suggests that it might be on top of the side intrusion beam.

    • randy bramstedt says:

      Absolutely incorrect. ABS systems leave visible marks on pavement that can easily be distinguished. Typically the pattern is of broken or dashed skid marks as the ABS system cycles the brakes. Your assertion is incorrect that ABS does not leave skid marks. The skid mark pattern is different than non-ABS systems, but still is quite visible to the untrained eye.

  53. olballcoach says:

    Found this looking in Michael Hastings Images on google. Pretty thorough.

  54. Nightwriter says:
    Crashes of Convenience: Michael Hastings

  55. SO says:

    When I first look at daylight pictures of the car, I thought the door had been removed. But, now I see that it was still there, just opened. It is hard to tell for sure, but it looks to me like the top part of the inside of the door, where the bottom of the window begins, is blown open. This would be consistent, I think, with a firebomb exploding inside the door.

  56. donfarkas says:

    I am certainly not an expert on car explosions, but it seems to me that only an explosion that originated from underneath the vehicle would lift it upwards, as the article’s quoted expert stated. The same physics would not apply to a hypothetical explosion (or very rapid combustion) of an explosive or very flammable gaseous substance originating inside the cabin. An explosion occurring from within the cabin area would probably tend to put more downward force on the vehicle’s stronger chassis as it might also tend to blow out pressure through the windows and roof.

  57. SO says:

    And, while it is disgusting, perhaps, to point out, it seems likely to me that the headrest would have been incinerated, and that what is visible in the window area is probably the driver’s head.

  58. SO says:

    Another thing to note is the nature of the damage to the front door. Most of it appears to be purely heat damage, not flame damage. Unfortunately, the LOUDLABS video does not show the driver’s side while it is engulfed in flames, but it makes sense that the flames came out the widow and tended to go upward, as fires will do. And the visible pattern of damage seems to confirm that the paint was removed by heat, not by direct flame. This, I think, is highly suggestive that the driver’s area was a center of heat, centered around that apparent outward dent in the door. It is my armchair opinion that this suggests that a firebomb was planted in the door.

  59. SO says:

    This blackening by the door handle hole also seems peculiar. It indicates that fire and smoke exited the hole. This is not impossible in an innocent fire, but it seems odd to me that the fire would protrude there, and that the door handle would be gone, too, especially considering the apparent dent in the door, right next to the driver’s body.

  60. SO says:

    I find this defect in the driver’s door to be interesting. It appears to be a dent from the inside.

  61. SO says:

    Fires burn fuel. Michael Hastings’ car, if there was no foul play, burned the gasoline which had been in its fuel tank. As you can see in this capture from the LOUDLABS video, the driver’s door is damaged in such a way as to imply that one of the centers of fire activity was the driver’s location. How does the driver’s location become a central location of burning gasoline?

    • j45 says:

      Questions for Mercedes-Benz: where is the fuel line routed in this car? The fuel pump is most likely in the rear of the car. Is it at all possible that electrical circuit to the fuel pump was not shut off after the impact? And is it possible that running over that elbow water pipe just before hitting the tree could have severed the fuel line in the area where the driver is?

      I am sure that M-B with safety in mind as they have implied would prevent this but i am just bringing this thought up. I found some info on another model of M-B and the fuel pump is on the passenger side in the rear, but on Hastings M-B how is the fuel line routed?

    • SO says:

      Could a fuel pump feed that blaze? I doubt it. If this was an accident, a whole lot of gas had to move very quickly.

    • Adriaen22 says:

      “Is it at all possible that electrical circuit to the fuel pump was not shut off after the impact?”

      What a superlative question!!! It should shut off. If it didn’t, would that not be the best clue yet that the throttle had been taken over remotely, that the fuel feed program had been overridden?

      As for the rest. highly, highly improbable that the water pipe severed the fuel line. There are comments throughout this thread that explain why.

  62. SO says:

    The more I read this piece, the more I must agree with the critics. The author is stretching to make this seem to be an accident. He can’t even be sure it is the brake lights he sees in the security video (which he won’t let us see), and yet, he bases an argument for accident on the conclusion that it was the brake light he saw. He bases another argument on what a special effects guy says, when he should be asking a professional assassin; the special effects guy is concerned with putting on a show, not with killing people. These are very different disciplines. And yet, the story’s title and other internal mini-headlines imply the opposite conclusion, that it was not an accident. It leaves the impression of mainstream media airhead bewilderment, favoring accident, but not really providing any evidence.

    • olballcoach says:

      It is a very sloppy piece – at best. Others here suspect worse. I think a rewrite is in order.

    • SO says:

      I now suspect worse, too. This piece, it seems to me, is aimed at the suspicious with the intent of cooling them down. “Be cool. Yes, it’s mysterious, but it’s probably just an accident. It certainly wasn’t a bomb. It’s hard to blow up stuff. Put it on the back burner. Let’s talk about the poor Mexican drug lords being targeted by mission creep, instead. You won’t even understand that, let alone care about it.”

  63. Trust The Gov't says:

    I have visited this crash site and have a couple of images taken by people who live there of the police working the scene the morning after. Notice the debris from his car on the northbound lanes in front of his vehicle.

    I can buy that the engine ejection might have been caused by running over the water utility box, what I can’t buy is anyone with anything at all to live for going 80MPH, and running 2 or 3 red lights in that section of town.

    The simple math yields Hasting’s death as a quite probable hi-tech hit, done by people who are expert at such filthy doings. Just rig the car with a time-release doping agent, and 20 seconds after that, zap the car’s computer via satellite to accelerate. Just ask Gary Webb what happens when you threaten the shadow government’s status quo.

    I strongly believe that in efforts to keep people from getting too close to the ugliness that is the truth about America these days there are agency people working overtime typing away on chat boards such as this, as a matter of fact, the NSA has publicly admitted it does this….because it works.

    For example, a surprisingly small percentage of Americans seem to notice the obvious about the Boston Staged Terror Event, (1) there was a drill running parallel to it, like so many other false flags, and (2) neither of the Tsarnaev brother’s backpacks match the exploded one, and (3) the only backpack that did match was worn by the CRAFT military mercenaries at the marathon.

    Military mercenaries at the marathon. This is America.

    • olballcoach says:

      Wow that’s a lot of debris down the street.

    • olballcoach says:

      It would be informative have closer piks of the debris in order to better venture a guess as to point of origin. I have been looking closely at the 25 or so piks of the tree following the crash and it is interesting how damaged and burnt the tree looks from the same angle as the cars final resting place. Yet there is a point where the damage in almost a straight line vertical on the tree stops. Anything to the left looks like a mangled tree – anything to the right and straight up at least 10 feet or more looks a tree that had just been severely impacted and burned. Troubling thing is – it is the very same point where most of us think the impact originated before it lifted, gathered into the tree and pivoted to the right. If the vehicle had impacted the palm tree at almost a straight line from the “4rth plate” (does not show on google street- but so named here by contributors because someone took recent piks and there is a 4rth plate next to the two seen in google piks) – it is not possible to tell from piks of the tree.
      The other thing bothering me – is – what is the angle of the debris field extending from the tree and point of impact. From my eye ball guess it looks short of Clinton Avenue – where the engine and drive train came to rest. Wouldnt it be logical to assume that the whole pile of busted up car be thrown in the same in the same direction. Again, IMHO it looks like there is a debris pattern that is more closely aligned to the angle of the car at rest as it sits with the tree inside of itself. And the angle of the engine and drive train appear to be at a place that suggests they where ejected miliseconds prior to the impact, lift and pivot.
      Dont know what either observations mean – just tossing salad.

  64. Gerald Perdue says:

    Why don’t you upload the video from the pizzeria ?

  65. Johnny Shiloh says:

    “Go to sleep people. This was an accident.”

    If that doesn’t sum up what the emerging police state wants the American people to do while our Constitution and Bill of Rights are steadily dismantled.

  66. Hymie Porkensteen says:

    My neighbor was killed in a head on crash on I-675 one morning, when a driver, had an epileptic seizure, his foot pushed and froze on the accelerator, crossed 120 feet of grass to the outer lane my neighbor was going and hit him at over 100 Mph. Both drivers died instantly. It is possible that the brain activity and stress cause a similar seizure, explaining the acceleration and no break/tire marks? Just a thought

    • Adriaen22 says:

      If you knew that the coroner cremated Hastings’ remains without request or authority from his family, would you reconsider your seizure scenario?

  67. joy says:

    you need to g back to where the car first started speeding & running red lights. that is where the “incident” happened. doubt that Hastings would have been going that fast if he were awake and not drunk.. which I doubt he was.
    see if there are cameras back where he first started speeding.
    then you get a clearer picture.

    • olballcoach says:

      Absolutely, you would think by now – that someone would have stepped forward and said – I was with Michael earlier in the day – and he was……. And I was with him later in the evening blah blah blah……MSM began the demonization of the Tsarnaev brothers before the older one was cold – and the dailey revelations were relentless. Zero commentary, zero speculation, zero friends, zero witnesses – nothing – he either lived a pretty clean life and there is nothing that can be dug up on him….or – what?

  68. DTM says:

    Anyone who doesn’t believe the US Federal Government wasn’t involved is naieve.

  69. Yancey Ward says:

    If I understand this, then all that is required is for Hastings to have been driving at a reckless and high speed. Your information about the rise and dip is pretty convincing to me that Hastings got his car airborne briefly just before the crash, probably panicked a bit on the landing and lost control. Anyone who has ever accidentally driven a cycle over a surprise dip knows exactly what I am talking about. I have even felt this transitory panic in a car going over a dip I did not anticipate was there.

    • dubld says:

      You obviously don’t drive a Mercedes.

      Since the 90’s most luxury cars, BMW and Mercedes for sure, have had traction control systems that instantaneously apply steering and acceleration countermeasures in such cases. And by default they are always on unless manually turned off. So even the fact that he may have been doing an excess of 100mph is insignificant. While these speeds may be above what most drivers are used to, the difference is fairly insignificant compared to the clock timing in the computer controlling the traction control system. There is no question it could have easily applied adequate assistance to any lift or loss of tracking with no problem, even at these speeds. Furthermore, some of the newest Mercedes models have an additional ‘impact awareness system’ that can sense upcoming impacts and apply countermeasures to those as well. I can’t say for sure that Hasting’s car had this feature, but its at least 50/50. And at the very least it definitely had the traction control.

      So the traction control system actually opens two cans of worms. First it renders these types of explanations somewhat inadequate (no offense, I know you’re just trying to be rational about it), and second, it confirms that a system that overrides driver input to the steering and braking systems WAS ALREADY IN PLACE as a stock option. Thus all that would be needed is a quick change to its programming that could be easily and invisibly uploaded through the cars OBD port in a matter of a minute. No special equipment or bomb strapping required. In fact, if this crash was a purposeful act, I have no question that this is how it was accomplished…

    • Yancey Ward says:

      I don’t doubt the car had such systems, but they are not foolproof against high-speed over- compensations- you are talking about a lot of momentum and kinetic energy to overcome, the latter of which goes up by the square of the velocity. It really matters how fast he was actually going. The reports I have seen suggest it was over 100 mph. Even a well equipped modern vehicle leaving the pavement for a brief moment just slightly off-line or out of balance can go out of control on landing.

  70. Guest says:

    It’s useless to speculate, but since I’m pretty useless anyway I think if I were going to commit vehicular suicide for, say, insurance purposes I might first send out some mysterious emails to give the impression that I was murdered.

  71. texasrose says:

    With this investigation, did ANYONE think to go back and look at a possible tape of WHEN his car was tampered with? Could Michael have had a secured camera in the vicinity of his car? Did anyone even think of going back and investigating where the scene of the crime (and I think it was) started? Go back to where his car was last known to be sitting and start from there.

    • olballcoach says:

      his “friend” Srgt Biggs has said that police had been out to see Michael the afternoon before the crash – and that they were seen looking under his car. No – sources – just his telling stories.

  72. sgtdoom says:

    Updates on the Hastings’ “accident” — body returned to family in cremated condition (not the wishes of family members).

    Interesting to note (aside from similarities to the Gary Webb “suicide”) is that Gen. McChrystal is at Yale University’s Jackson Institute (first reported by Russ Baker) along with his bud, John Negroponte.

    As many know, “death squad” John Negroponte coincidentally seems to appear whenever an assassination takes place, from Diem in Vietnam, to his journey to Pakistan several weeks prior to the assassination of Benazir Bhutto.

    Although said to have been involved with the Phoenix Program during the Vietnam War, Negroponte really began to arise in the public limelight when he replaced Jimmy Carter’s honorable appointee to Guatemala, Jack Binns, as Ambassador Binns had been communicating to the Reagan Administration the crimes perpetrated by the Guatmalan military against its people, and Reagan and his people fired Binns!

    Whenever Negroponte is affiliated with a country, the population of death squads increases dramatically, be it Guatemala or Iraq!

    No doubt, between McChrystal’s connections, and the myriad connections of fellow Jackson Instituter, Negroponte, an “accident” against Michael Hastings would not be that difficult to arrange?

  73. Sal says:

    And the video is posted where?

  74. SO says:

    Maybe this is the key to understanding what happened:

    “Though reports said that the body had been burned beyond recognition, the Associated Press said that the coroner had matched his fingerprints to prints that the FBI had on file.”

    How did his fingerprints not burn away in that inferno? Is it plausible that they were able to take his fingerprints after the fire? Why would they even say this? Who’s even going to notice? The people have moved on to the Zimmerman trial, so they won’t care. This is for the “kooks” and “journalists.” The FBI and the LAPD have just teamed up to do the impossible. They matched fingerprints to a charred corpse. It’s a victory dance in the end zone, and a warning to journalists everywhere to drive carefully.

  75. At Odds says:

    Well, considering ‘Fast and Furious’ (who’s the cheeseball that thought up that name?), diverting foreign leaders’ planes, bullying countries, spying on the world, interfering with the Zimmerman case, General’s club hang out in Florida, all being so true and wanting them to be secretive. Can’t see why anybody would consider this to not not be an accident. Or, at least, why anybody would think that the theory of “this was no accident” and anybody that proposes it to be kooky.

  76. Jim says:

    This is modern journalism – get used to it, demand better or stop watching their painfully inadequate offerings (costs them advertising dollars). I’m a retired Journalist of the old school. Has anyone tested the wreck for explosives (the car burned too hot – gee what was that – think Ventura and the Seals); running traffic lights – do you think they care if he took out someone else at 4:30 AM? Who was chasing him? Why hasn’t his estate sued Mercedes, the dealer and the chip maker who are co=operating with police – just what you don’t want. The stories I have seen said the motor was behind the car [300′] and experts thought that impossible. Have you seen the note he sent his colleagues – No journalist wrote that – a clerk or cop or almost anyone – just not a pro? Was his idea of going off the radar to get drunk and go joy riding – where was he at 1 AM? Why did local TV feature a bottle lying in the grass – fingerprints? I could go on, but I am becoming ill…remember you get the kind of journalism you deserve. He was not a muck-raker — try “truth teller.” They are worth their weight in gold these days. But I am sadly coming to believe that “the people” don’t deserve them.

    • sgtdoom says:

      Well, one must face up to the dumbing down process today: more Americans were aware of the Eisenhower Administration’s involvement with the overthrow of the democratically-elected president (Arbaenz) of Guatemala, then they are today of the involvement of the Obama Administration (and Hillary Clinton) in the overthrow of the democratically-elected president (Zelaya) of Honduras.

  77. Texas Chris says:

    Hastings was investigating then Sec of State Clinton’s involvement in the Benghazi debacle. The list of purely accidental deaths and non-mysterious disappearances of former Clinton associates and detractors alike is certainly not alarming in the slightest…

    • JakeLee says:

      wow, texaschris. That’s great speculation on what he was working on. Makes a lot of sense really, they want Hillary in office next turn, so she can continue the status quo of dismantling the constitution and bill of rights. Probably an agreement they came to when Hillery and Barack went to the Bilderberg meeting prior to the election. Benghazi seemed to be a real setup though, because A) It wasn’t a real embassy, it was more of a safe house B) Reports of the CIA detaining militants at the site C) Fake-Fox news latching on to the story and not letting up, even though there was no smoking gun or easy way to blame the administration. And don’t forget they don’t want reports of Hilleries homosexuality to get out either. Just like the prostitue Jeff Gannon visiting Bush while in office hundreds of times.

      Of course this is all just speculation…

  78. SO says:

    A ground-breaking journalist would have followed-up answers about perfection being needed. “How could a hacker have planned for no crossing traffic at the red lights?” He just lets that go. And a bomb can be a fire bomb, too. Once he was going fast, whatever he hit would have done the job if the car was rigged to burn. Maybe even Hastings was already dead before the car started moving. If you know you’re going to have an firey inferno, you don’t need to hit a palm tree. In fact, why would a palm tree be preferable? Maybe they were aiming for a lumbering Chevy and just missed. And if your people have infiltrated the right positions, you could even arrange to quickly cremate the corpse so that your fudged tests can never be questioned. These guys are professionals, dude.

    • mijj says:

      > A ground-breaking journalist would have followed-up answers about perfection being needed. “How could a hacker have planned for no crossing traffic at the red lights?”

      ummm … why would a hacker have to plan for no crossing traffic? All they would have to know is: there is sufficient time and space to take control and build up speed. If the hacker is receiving telemetry giving location, direction and speed, then that can easily be deduced. And to hell with bystanders.

      Would it be important to the hacker that a particular tree should be ploughed into, or that that particular location should be the scene, or that no bystanders are involved? I don't think so.

      So, why would perfection be needed? .. fatally crashing a car doesn't need the same degree of skilled, sensitive control as tightrope walking.

    • Texas Chris says:

      If it was the target’s regularly traveled rout, the hacker need only deposit a transmitter at the location and leave it to trip the hacked-in program. Set the program parameters for the least-traffic time of day (I dunno, say, 3:30 to 4:30 am?), and wait for the target to pass through the kill zone.

      The hacker wouldn’t even have to be there.

      Further, link IR strobes to the device and position them at cross streets to be activated when the hack begins, and all cross-street traffic will cease. Same tech emergency vehicles use…

      At least, that’s how I would have done it.

    • SO says:

      One the LOUDLABS video, which the car zooms through the intersection, at a right angle to the camera, you can see that the light is green, to the camera, so the intersections were probably not rigged in the way you suggest. But, as I and others have pointed out, there would have been no need to prevent a crash since the point was to cause a crash. Another car would have been as good as a palm tree. The idea that it was planned to hit that tree is a false context being used to make the accident explanation seem to be the only reasonable answer. We should not accept this false context.

    • SO says:

      I am posting an edit of my first reply to clarify it. I’d delete the other if I knew how.

      On the LOUDLABS video, which the car zooms through the intersection, at a right angle to the camera, you can see that the light is green, to the camera, so the intersections were probably not rigged in the way you suggest. But, as I and others have pointed out, there would have been no need to prevent a crash since the point was to cause a crash. Another car would have been as good as a palm tree. The idea that it had to be planned to hit that tree is a false context being used to make the accident explanation seem to be the only reasonable answer. We should not accept this false context.

    • Texas Chris says:

      You are correct, the lights were not manipulated. But that would be an indicator that this was not a professionally done hit.

      The whole point is to take out the target without drawing undue attention. In this scenario that requires speed. If the road were long and straight enough, and lights spaced far apart, then you don’t need light-rigging, just the trigger. If they’re close, you must rig, because speed is your weapon, and lights regulate speed.

    • Tom Janson says:

      Have you given up on investigating this case? Where do you stand?

  79. stonefruit says:

    great video from one of the greatest living citizen journalists

    • Eric says:

      Eh. More like one of the greatest living commentators/aggregators. Journalists are down in the muck, asking the questions, uncovering new information. That doesn’t mean he isn’t indispensable though!

  80. alittleluckwouldbenice says:

    They cremated Hastings body? Whoa

  81. Truth says:

    How fortuitous that a crash scene expert just happened to be at the scene and the only one privy to the supposed security tape.
    Article seems to want to subtly marginalize the very idea of a conspiracy to kill this reporter. But in a sneaky azz backhanded kinda way. Smells like..COINTELLPRO folks.

    This reporter was waxed and we all friggin know it .

    Who is this “guy” and where is this “tape”
    My Spidey sense is tingling about this website…

    • olballcoach says:

      okay – most of us agree something interesting about this author – like the lady who thinks the engine landed 50 yards behind the impact site. okay – got it. Thank you – anything else?

    • Tom Janson says:

      The Mercedes was facing east and the engine was 50 yards (mostly south) southeast of it. How is that possible?

    • SO says:

      The subtlety is in it’s genteel and non-committal tone. One might view this as journalistic professionalism, and it is certainly better than what I’ve seen elsewhere in the “respectable” press. One MSM thing I saw was already babbling about “discredited conspiracy theories” regarding this incident. Russ Baker displays this very same tone in Family Of Secrets, except when he accuses LBJ of blackmailing Earl Warren, that is. This style allows for an easy exit strategy, should one be desired, since it is non-committal. For example, I can easily imagine Russ Baker one day hailing GHW Bush as one of our greatest presidents, even after Family Of Secrets. Is this tone just their natural tone? Is it just a way to seem friendly to the mainstream crowd who would be put off by somebody who is actually upset at our sham democracy? Is it a tactic employed to keep their own cars from blowing up? One thing it isn’t, is ground-breaking. But, it’s still not bad compared to what else is out there. There may be tons of cream and sugar here, but at least there’s a few drops of coffee, too.

  82. Orangutan. says:

    A list of suspicious circumstances so far, any input is appreciated:

    Wikileaks revealed that their lawyer, Jennifer Robinson, was
    contacted by Hastings just hours before his death claiming that he was
    being investigated by the FBI.

    Hastings sent an email to colleagues hours before his death
    stating: re:NSA… I’m onto a big story and need to go off the radar for
    a bit.

    One eyewitness described the crash as such: “The Car Was
    Bouncing, Flames and Sparks Near the Gas Tank. When He Hit the Palm Tree
    That’s When the Flames Were Higher. There Were Explosions and
    Everything… No One Could Approach the Car Because it Kept Exploding.”

    The accident only involved Hastings car, no other vehicles.
    Police, Firefighters and EMS have been told not to comment on the investigation

    Another witness described the scene: “It sounded like a bomb went off.” “My house shook, the windows were rattling.”

    LAPD will not release a police report

    Former marine friend told media that Hasting’s was threatened: “We will hunt you down and kill you” for McChrystal reporting

    Hastings was driving a new Mercedes C-250, a car not prone to
    bursting into flames, especially sustaining heat that the crash did, as
    per military official

    Hastings had worked on numerous articles critical of the
    establishment, including: The Rise of the Killer Drones: How America
    Goes to War in Secret, Julian Assange: The Rolling Stone Interview,
    Another Runaway General: Army Deploys Psy-Ops on U.S. Senators,
    America’s Last Prisoner of War.

    One of Hastings articles had resulted in the forced resignation of General McChrystal.

    The Mercedes’ drive train was about 50-60 yards away from the crash site.

    Hastings had said in a 2012 Reddit AMA that he received numerous death threats.

    When he died, Hastings was working on a story regarding current CIA director Brennan.

    No brake/skid marks

    Some of his work was probing the CIA

    Hastings was Cremated, even though his family never requested it.

    Wife has hired a private investigator

    Michael Hasting had not had a drink in 5 years

    It might also be important to note that DARPA has the ability to hack cars.

    I have sourced these bullet points here:

  83. notthere56 says:

    I’m perplexed that the video described is not made available. The only way to ensure that this type of evidence is seen by the public is to disclose BEFORE the “authorities” get hold of it. [Think of all the disappeared videos of the Pentagon on 9/11.] Why haven’t you published it? According to your story, it is or was in the possession of your girlfriend. You, a reporter, have direct access to important evidence. What’s the holdup? You left out the most important part of the story to which you have or had direct access.

  84. GuyMontag425 says:

    I just got my hard copy of Rolling Stone magazine in the mail today. On p. 45 Tim Dickinson has a nice tribute to Hastings. In it, he quotes Jeff Hastings (younger brother who was an infantry LT in Iraq) who said, “I don’t believe it’s a conspiracy. There’s no part of me that’s troubled by that.” Dickinson wrote that Jeff “accepts the obvious … that Michael simply drove too fast and didn’t survive.”

    Perhaps it was just fast driving and bad luck that got Hastings killed? Dickinson also wrote, that “Hasting’s lived life at full throttle, raced his demons, and, at times, took unnecessary risks.”

    My own tribute to Michael Hastings (with quotes from others and his quotes from his book about the fiery car death of his first fiancee in Iraq) can be found on pp. 7 — 11 of my post “More Lies Borne Out by Facts, If Not the Truth” at the Feral Firefighter blog.

    • mijj says:

      > quotes Jeff Hastings (younger brother who was an infantry LT in Iraq) who said, “I don’t believe it’s a conspiracy. There’s no part of me that’s troubled by that.” Dickinson wrote that Jeff “accepts the obvious … that Michael simply drove too fast and didn’t survive.”

      being a relative gives him no special privilege over technical evidence.

    • gogetem1 says:

      Does his brother mention speeding through at least one and maybe up to three red lights in his comments? Please account for that, Mr. Hastings.

    • Truth says:

      Been here an hour, read two articles, Tsarnarev brothers and Hastings. Both smell. Just like this site so far. It smells like spooks trying to co-opt the message again. Bye.

    • olballcoach says:

      yea yea sure sure

    • BB says:

      One of those is Hymie Porkensteen.

  85. GuyMontag425 says:

    This is one of the less speculative pieces I’ve read about Hasting’s fatal car crash (It would be great to see the Pizzaria video as well).

    Last month, I wrote my own commentary on the crash that matches the scenario described in this piece:

    “It looks like Hasting’s car was going fast, he lost control (after hitting bump at intersection) went into the median strip, took out the hydrant [Note: I then assumed a hydrant, but actually metal piping not on google maps view] (could easily have ruptured the gas tank leading to the fire); hit the tree with the left front of the car which ejected engine (rare but it happens), and car pivoted to the right to rest at a 90 -degree angle from the road.”

    Note: if you look at google maps for 621 North Highland Avenue you can see that the impact angle described in the article matches the resting place of the engine at the next corner; see

    “I’m no expert, but I have been a firefighter for 22 years and that scenario is my best guess based on what I’ve seen so far. The remaining question in my mind is why Hasting’s car was going fast and lost control. Tired? Reckless? Under the influence? (but wasn’t he on the wagon for 10 years?). After reading the car hacking posts, hacking does seem like a possibility; but it seems a very iffy way of trying to off someone.”

    “I’ve been skeptical of the conspiracy theories concerning the crash. Usually in this country, the powers-that-be simply ignore you to death if they don’t like your writing. You’re “disappeared” from the mainstream media. Unless Hastings was onto something “so big” (NSA story?) it threatened someone enough to take action.”

    I’ve included links to articles about the Hasting’s car crash in Appendix G of my post “More LIes Borne Out by Facts, If Not the Truth” — The New York Time’s Disingenuous Obituary of Michael Hastings & Their Whitewash of Gen. Stanley McChrystal’s Role in “Le’Affair Rolling Stan,” The Pat Tillman Story, etc. at the Feral Firefighter blog.

    • olballcoach says:

      I have analyzed the crash site – from google maps, photos and eye witness reports – I am presuming like you.
      However, I cannot see how a car hitting the tree and coming to rest perpendicular to North Highland Drive is in anyway in direct alignment with the resting place of the engine and drive train. The trajectory of the engine in that place would put the engine in the front yard of those homes directly across from the palm tree. If the car impacted head on or even slightly off angle and then lifted to and swayed to the right (coming to rest at the perpendicular) – then the trajectory of the engine would have put it through the palm tree – all or partial. So, if the engine block even partially grazed the tree that would have altered the trajectory (height and velocity) so significantly as to not come anywhere near where it did in fact come to rest. My contention is that the engine could have only ejected prior to impact.
      Down thread I make my case that the vehicle was not going fast enough to have caused the engine to eject with that carry and velocity to come to rest 180 feet away.
      I dont know what could have done this. My arguement is that given what is known – I dont see how the impact explains the what happened.

    • GuyMontag425 says:

      “I cannot see how a car hitting the tree and coming to rest perpendicular to North Highland Drive is in anyway in direct alignment with the resting place of the engine and drive train.”

      I never said the car hit the tree directly head on; I wrote It could have hit with the LEFT FRONT of the car (engine continued forward just past the right of the tree) and then the car rotated to the right to rest at close to a right angle to the road.

      If I’m right, the car didn’t hit the tree perpendicular to the road; it rotated into that position after the engine was ejected. Perhaps the engine grazed the tree but not enough to send it much off course.

      This scenario agrees with the author who wrote, “The front of the car, particularly on the driver’s side, was badly damaged.”

    • olballcoach says:

      How wide is the front of a Mercedez – now take away at least 3-4 feet for the front left bumper, wheel well and damage – which are obviously into the tree – so – what you’re suggesting is that the engine and the drive train cleanly ejected at impact through the remainder of the front end – which is what another 2-3 feet – and whizzes perfectly by the tree as the car is lifting and pivoting to the right?
      Dude, thats what you call the immaculent ejection.

    • olballcoach says:

      One other thing – not sure if it is relevant. But I’ll give it a whack. What side of the tree would have the engine block and drive train whizzed by? Using the car for reference – over the left wheel or over the right side. One would think the right side – but I noticed on Google street view there is another Palm 10 – 15 feet south of the impact site. I cannot find another picture to update that pik – most are taken from the South looking North – and the couple of the burnt out car sitting there the next morning from the South looking North lack all perspective – and I cannot tell. Anyone got a better pik? If that next Palm is that close to the impact site – then it makes the ejection at impact theory that much more problematic – bordering on the miraculous.

    • olballcoach says:

      Here’s the website for the Mercedez – its 69″ wide from left side mirror to right side mirror. Take away 3 ft of the car because it is into the tree and you are left with the 33 inches for the engine to eject from – and since the engine is located in the center of the car it would have had to eject at a slight right angle to the car to get around the tree, but not to much of an angle so as not to hit the next tree?????

    • tpmco says:

      Hey guys! I’m talking to olball and guymontague with a 425. Quit your arguing. Those transverse mounted engine/transmission are not going to be expelled out the front of a vehicle in any kind of crash. The mounts are designed to to fail down and to the rear.

      Neglecting the design criteria would only allow you guys to argue all night, but if you just wanna’ get drunk, well fine. Just don’t waste our time. Thanks.

    • olballcoach says:

      me no argue –

    • Adriaen22 says:

      “Those transverse mounted engine/transmission are not going to be expelled out the front of a vehicle in any kind of crash. The mounts are designed to to fail down and to the rear.”

      Precisely!…not to mention that slight rises at intersections are not going to cause a Mercedes to “bottom out” nor fish tail nor bounce. This wasn’t a Honda.

    • olballcoach says:

      ergo., what caused the engine and drive train to eject with such height and velocity to land 180 feet away – all the while the vehicle is impacting into the tree, lifting and pivoting to the right? No way it gets by that tree without nicking it, grazing it and that would have significantly altered that pretty straightline resting place it ended up. I am calling it the “immaculent ejection.”

    • olballcoach says:

      Nope nope nope. The google street view clearly without a doubt unequivocably shows the two meter lids are on the far left hand side of the median as you drive south – and they are about 30 feet (4 car lenghts) from the impact site. And this is where the gushing water was coming from on the loudd labs video. I just spotted another flat metal lid of some sort about 10 or less away from the impact tree and it is far to the right on the median strip. (you have to come up from behind to view it – but the black sedan on the left blocks view of it most of the way). Now if there was a protruding pipe at that spot – Michaels car would have driven over it – but only if he had it the tree almost head on, just slightly at a left turn angle. The problem is: his vehicle would have most certainly come to rest on top of it, or as the vehicle pivoted to the right from impact – the gushing water would have gushed onto Michaels car.

      Not what we see in the loud labs video.

    • Adriaen22 says:

      The pipe on that median is plastic…not metal, not cast iron…just plastic. Furthermore, the Mercedes is built like a tank, even the underbelly. It is plated underneath. There is very little exposed under that type of car. How does a plastic pipe slice through steel plating to nick a fuel line and then manage to get propelled nearly 200 feet away where it gouges the base of a tree? Had the plastic pipe somehow managed to get up in there, then there it should have stayed, not flown at a very high speed down toward Clinton Ave.

    • olballcoach says:

      I posted down thread that the orange cone pictured on your blog may have been where they had to dig to shut the water main off – just a guess. But there is no way the car rolled over that pipe – not anything at that location – because that would have required the vehicle to veer left 50-60 feet before impact, run over the pipe, then veer back to the right and then hard left into the tree. There is no evidence from eye witnesses nor on the ground to support that contention. Guy and I are pretty much in agreement on that point. Now what looks agreeable is the small plate or lid about 10 feet from the tree to the far right of the median. This may have been where the under carriage scraped and caused sparking as described by the author – but again it is not where we see water gushing from the ground in the loud labs video – that water is coming from one of the two plates 30 (at least 4 car lengths) from the impact site to the left of the median (facing south).
      And the only thing we can surmise from that – is that it must have been one hell of an explosion to rupture what appears to be fairly sturdy PVC piping. My contention is that the explosion had to occur prior to or after impact – but not during. Please see my posts down thread.

    • GuyMontag425 says:

      Once again, the piping and plate shown in those photos does not appear in the google map view (it is a “4th” plate).

      Look at the close up photo of the orange cone at the end of the post:

      and then the pictures showing the location of the cone at:

      There was no need to “veer left” and then back to hit the tree at the right angle.

    • olballcoach says:

      Yes, acknowledged the 4rth plate down post. But oooh boy that’s a mighty straight line to the tree – dont ya think?. As I said down thread, it means he would have had to ease over the median curb 20-30 ft at least prior to the protruding pipe – and then straighten out the vehicle to run over the pipe. I dont remember tire tracks on the median lawn either?
      Just my eyeball opinion here – but that is a dead on head on collision now. And that now makes the trajectory angle much tighter. Intuitively it makes sense that the vehicle at impact lifts and pivots and in that pivot the engine has better angle to eject through – but the miliseconds between impact, lift and pivot and ejection make it unlikely it could have gotten out of the car in time at that angle.

    • Adriaen22 says:

      I just posted a new article and included a closer in photo of the pipe remnant. There is grass growing in there, so there was no digging in there in the recent past. I also included other photos that might help you hone your theory. There is steel plating under the car…also, the pipe would have been too high for the car to clear or drive over. If the car struck it at all, it would have sent the pipe flying, but there was no opportunity for the pipe to sheer into a fuel line under the car as some have speculated. I need to go out there with a tape measure to get distance from the pipe to the tree. To me, it looked like 12 feet or so but a measurement is in order.

      And yes, the pipe was sturdy PVC.

      One final detail here…there were 3 distinct explosions with only one extremely powerful one that shook houses. Mercedes contends that their cars don;t explode, much less three times.

    • olballcoach says:

      while your at it – can you measure the circumference of the tree?

    • olballcoach says:

      the video I posted above described the tree as having a 4ft radius – that seems way on high side – I was guessing 3ft. 3-4 ft certainly narrows the window that engine could have sailed through given the car is just less than 60 inches across excluding the outside mirrors.

    • olballcoach says:

      thank you

    • Adriaen22 says:

      Ok…water box is 25 feet from the crash tree (your estimate was good)….it is to the right of the treeline (looking south) so it is closer to the south bound than the north bound…tree circumference is 78″ around measured in the zone of auto impact. There is a very wide gash that winds around the tree-this gash measures 40″ from end to end, I have to upload photos so you can see.

      the curb where the transmission landed is 9″ high…the median curb is 3″ high

    • olballcoach says:

      1. thats a big tree.
      2. did you see any tire tracks on the grass from the water box to the tree. All photo/ indications are that he didnt jump the curb until maybe 10-12 ft out?
      3. 25 feet back? IF he ran over that he had to ease up the median another 20 feet back so as not to fish tale on the grass or drive into the north bound lanes at that speed. doesnt make sense.

    • GuyMontag425 says:

      Thanks for the correction, It has been reported by several folks that the piping was hard plastic. I had read that, but wrote “metal” in my post, as that point had slipped my mind.

  86. par4 says:

    Anyone know anything about his driving record?

    • Stephanie S says:

      His friends say he drove like a grandma, slow and careful. I’m from L.A. I couldn’t believe someone would drive that fast on Highland at that hour. It’s a very quiet neighborhood. Unless he was running for his life, no reason.

  87. ThisAintKyle says:

    Looks like the CL 250 has a self-park feature:

  88. oldenwise says:

    David Wilcock explains a little about how cars have been hackable since 2008…. REMOTE-CONTROLLED AUTOMOBILES: LEGALLY REQUIRED IN THE U.S. SINCE 2008?

    What if ALL new cars sold in America for the last five years — all makes and models from 2008 and up — can be remote-controlled by certain insider groups?

  89. brux says:

    Link to the videotape of the accident please?

  90. empriicist says:

    Or he could have been trying to lose the FBI following him as he said they were doing.

  91. bobjonestwo says:

    Heard from many witnesses that the engine ended up about 50 yards behind the car, that’s very suspicious.

    • donfarkas says:

      That claim about the engine having been found behind the car is erroneous and was mistakenly made by a TV reporter in a news program broadcast on a San Diego station (i,e., Channel 6). No witness ever stated that the engine ended up behind the car. All witnesses agreed the engine and transmission ended up about 150 feet ahead (i.e., south) of the car after having gone in the same direction that the car had been traveling before the crash.

  92. afterallthat says:

    How could a Mercedes engine be found 50 feet from the wreck?This was reported by a witness who heard the explosion. I did not see reference to this detail.

    • donfarkas says:

      A large portion of the car’s engine and transmission still attached, together with an attached part of the driveshaft as well, can be seen in a video made shortly after the crash to be located farther south on Highland not far from the intersection with Clinton Street. Some witnesses estimated that this placed the engine and transmission debris at least 150 feet away from the crash site. We will have ti wait for the LAPD to release its accident report to get the precise distance information.

    • veen says:

      Driveshaft? I wanted to say that the Merc is a front-wheel drive, but now it occurs to me that it’s AWD. That would be a lot of of failed bolts, for the engine and tranny to eject and fly so far. There are stub-axles from the front wheels to the transaxle – in addition to the motor and transaxle mounts. These things are strong. Not saying it’s impossible, but I’d like to see a test in which this same model of car is driven into a fixed object at 100mph.

  93. mijj says:

    > “I’m not a conspiracy guy, but ..”

    whoah! .. you’re not a conspiracy guy? .. Given the history of the United States and its wall-to-wall conspiracies to do untold damage in all imaginable avenues, you’d have to be nuts to not immediately assume conspiracy unless proven otherwise.

    I guess a reporter’s instinct to declare aversion to the idea of conspiracy marks how well our masters indoctrinate us against our own best interests.

    • bobjonestwo says:

      Anyone who is not “a conspiracy guy” is either ignorant, corrupt or not paying any attention whatsoever. A conspiracy theorist is someone who questions known liars.

  94. GHTY says:

    I think it’s a suicide and I am a person that thinks Newtown was a
    totally staged hoax and the Boston marathon bombing was a show produced with crisis actors.

    • olballcoach says:

      like Gary Webb who shot himself twice in the head?

    • bobjonestwo says:

      You’re a dangerous guy, by your comments you are obviously someone who has actually looked at the actual facts and not just bought the nonsense the media spews. The government doesn’t like people who don’t believe everything they are told. As Obama said, if you don’t believe him, we are going to have problems.

    • Corey says:

      Great. Then your credibility is shot in three different ways. Is that supposed to engender confidence or something? You must think we’re all idiots.

  95. Jim says:

    Michael’s body was cremated without his family’s knowledge or consent. That cinches it for me.

    > I’m not a conspiracy guy

    With all respect Mr. Krikorian, the US government and its intel agencies have just been outed in a very large conspiracy. Perhaps you should consider becoming a little more of a conspiracy guy and a little less of coincidence theorist?

  96. S Romero says:

    Who trust LAPD now a days? I mean in the real world at least.

  97. RuthieTruthie says:

    Do you really think they are going to do a “complete’ toxicology report??? Dream on. When NISC was ask if explosives were found in the collapse of WTC 7, NICS said ‘no’. When ask if they tested for explosives…NICS said ‘no’ again. That’s how our system works.

  98. Jimbo says:

    “It’s very hard to blow up stuff well,” Anderson said. “I think too many things would have to go right. Luck would be involved. Good and bad. Does someone doing this to Hastings want to rely on luck? Too many things have to go right. It would have to be perfect. And that’s almost impossible.”

    This sort of logic stuck me for being a perfect reason not to believe the official 9/11 story.

  99. olballcoach says:

    The attached video is Kathleen Fisher, a computer expert at DARPA – she gets to the point fairly early – and then goes techno geek. The point is – yes it is possible to hack modern autos and it is already being done.

    • onedavide says:

      i know from experience that if u have no brakes, are going to fast and suddenly pull up the emergency brake, it will throw you into a violent leftward spin (because em brake applies only left wheel brake). this scenario seems to comport w/the evidence in this article (red just b4 impact), also speed & brakes could have easily been hacked by some of the people hastings was investigating > SEE attached article > black hat vs.white hat – snowden, hastings & barett brown.

    • Dave Dave says:

      the jetsons meet blue velvet

  100. Corey says:

    I feel compelled to respond to a few things:
    “Could a hacker have planned for no cross traffic, which might have derailed the mission?”
    How would that have derailed the mission? The only goal is to bring the vehicle speed up to 90+ mph. Virtually anything that happens after that will result in death.

    “Stanley got him.” This was kind of a stupid assertion on the part of the detective. Career revenge is not worth risking a black op of this kind, even if McChrystal had connections—not only deep, but dark connections.

    The real motive comes down to: what story was he working on?? His friends all said he had told them he was working on his biggest story yet. Wikileaks tweated what they did. If that story was worth killing Hastings, then there’s a good chance we will never find out what that story was. The face that this was left out of the article is unfortunate.
    We need to further ask, why was Hastings in touch with Wikileaks? Did he regularly contact them, or did the subject matter of his latest story bring him to them? If that’s the case, we can speculate that the story had to do with an insider disclosure equal to or bigger than Snowden. Preventing something like that would be worth killing for.

    • sistercarrie says:

      John Avlon . host of Reliable Source on CNN showed a previously unaired interview with Michael Hastings and his wife, journalist Elise Jordan on July 7th. Avlon ended the show by saying that Elise Jordan told him she was going to finish the last piece Hastings was working on, which was a book on CIA Director, John Brennan.

    • Corey says:

      Interesting. Can we assume that the book was 80% complete? Hopefully it will still be published. But I doubt anything shocking had been incorporated up to the point of his death. The best time to kill is before the cat is out of the bag. The revelation could be related to that topic, or it could be something else. E.g., Snowden fell out of the sky for Greenwald.

    • sistercarrie says:

      Very true. I’m sure he was working on many things. His email references the NSA and the Barrett Brown people say Hastings was also working on an article about his case.

    • Corey says:

      I just checked out the interview. It was from July 2012. That’s practically ancient history in terms of what he could have been working on recently.

    • Ross McKenzie says:

      He was due to visit with whistle blower Barrett Brown.

    • sistercarrie says:

      The interview was re-aired on July 7th, 2013 with new commentary added by Avlon at the end of the show on what Hatings had been working on at
      the time of his death and that his wife would finish it.

    • gustave courbet says:

      I agree with your assessment. Additional questions: What are the signs and forensic traces of a vehicle hack, and is anyone in the LAPD qualified to detect them?

    • olballcoach says:

      Down thread someone suggested listening to the Corbett Report feed on his “Crashes of Convenience.” In it he sites several sources – in particular a study done by UC San Diego and U Wash team that states flatly – their are no forensic fingerprints – and in this case especially because it was all destroyed in the blast and fire.

    • onedavide says:

      see article i posted just above, the type of nefarious actors who have ‘back door’ access to all types of computer software programs worldwide (u can even buy a subscription for $2.5 million/yr.) and DEEP intel connections.

    • bobjonestwo says:

      Hastings stated many times that while he was embedded he was told many times that if the story he wrote was negative he would be killed. He said he was told this daily. Brave guy, we need thousands more like him.

    • gogetem1 says:

      SST Biggs denied that Hastings was in touch with a Wikileaks lawyer, but said that he did consult with a private lawyer.

  101. olballcoach says:

    This was really really good – informative and convincing. And Ya had me going along until – “About halfway between the curb and the tree, the car hits a metal protrusion—perhaps 30 inches tall and 2 feet wide—that gives access to city water mains below. This is where the first small flash occurs. This pipe may have damaged the undercarriage of the car, perhaps rupturing a fuel line.”
    There is no metal protrusion where you describe it – and the way you describe the impact – the car would have come to rest on top of it. It just could not have happened that way.

    1) From the laud labs (?) video – that “metal protrusion” is not in line with the forward direction of the vehicle as you describe it. On the laud lab video all we see of the supposed metal protrusion is a broken water pipe gushing water @ 3-4 feet into the air. The problem is – that the location of the water gushing is (I am guessing) 20 – 30 feet before the impact site and it is on the far left of the median (nearer to northbound traffic). . Meaning the car would have had to jump the curb 40-50 feet sooner than impact, nearly cross the entire median to run over the metal protrusion and then veer back to the right off the median and hard left again and into the tree. As you say, there are no skid marks – and neither are there tire traction marks on the grass.

    2) I initially looked the impact site up on Google maps and there is nothing visible on that median strip (except grass and palms)in either direction resembling a metal protrusion, pipe, fire hydrant, or otherwise. Not sure when the google maps pik was taken, but one would think piping for mains or landscape would have been installed when the median was built.
    3). My guess, accounting for the gushing water main is that the explosion was so ferocious that it shattered, or cracked the PVC.

    4) One last thing that has niggled away at me. At its final resting place the car is nearly perpendicular to the street. I am assuming it hit with such force that the back end lifted and swayed to the right to make it rest at this angle. I am also assuming since the car did not “accordion” it was traveling much less than 100 mph. In additon, video and photo evidence from the scene show the front end grill to be damaged but somewhat intact.
    My question is two-fold: what was the trajectory of the @300 lb engine block and drive train – and what is the necessary speed for a vehicle to be traveling that would create the force necessary to eject that engine and drive train that far?
    a. My layman’s guess is that – in order to end up 180 feet ahead of the vehicle it would have had to get signficant lift and acceleration to carry and then roll that far. But if the car impacted nearly head on that would have put the trajectory of that fairly large object almost directly through the palm tree. If instead, the car impacted at the perpendicular angle, that would have put the engine and drive train in somebody’s front yard directly across from the impact site. Neither of these options is satisfactory. The only trajectory angle that makes sense, given where the engine and drive train landed is someplace other than the impact site.
    b. As I pointed out above, the speed of the car appears to be in the range in mentioned 80 mph – but certainly below 100 mph. The car does not have the kind of damage consistent with crashes in the 100 mph range. Evidence of car crash examples are all over utube. So, can a car traveling 80 -90 mph eject an engine and drive train that high and that far at impact? Again, layman’s guess – certainly not if a 2-3 foot radius palm tree is directly in front of the car. I find it highly unlikely that engine would first – cleanly eject out of the car and then not even nick or graze the tree – which would have significantly altered its direction and distance. So, again, the only trajectory that makes sense, a clean eject without any other outside object to redirect or slow it down must have occurred some time before impact.
    Thank you for your time.

    • Corey says:

      You’re missing the forest for the trees. Just like most JFK researchers. They spend all their energy figuring out how it had to have happened rather than why. The only thing you need to know is that hacking an electronic vehicle these days is incredibly simple, followed by disabling the breaks and engaging the accelerator. That’s it! Otherwise you’ll be lost in the [confusing and unverifiable] details forever.

    • olballcoach says:

      Why thank you for your arrogant critique of my motivations – but you missed my point altogether. I was not positing a theory but questioning the authors assertions. The only thing I “need” to know is what is the evidence and what does it tell me – delicious details and all.

    • sfulmer says:

      Google street view shows a pipe protruding from the ground in front of the first palm tree in the median south of Melrose Ave on N.Highland. It is only a few feet north of the palm tree. The pipe comes out of the ground, makes 2 90 deg turns, then returns into the ground. The Google street view image from the NBound side of NHighland shows a styrofoam cup under it, but the image from the SBound side is clear. I don’t know if that’s the right place or not, but there it is.

    • maggie315 says:

      Based on the Loud Labs video and videos taken by visitors to the site since the accident, I think the crash occurred further south–where in Google street view you can see two flat cements covers and then just plain grass where the water was spouting. The photos since the accident show a new cement square with an exposed pipe. But it seems in the article above, in the security video you can see the car hit some type of above-ground pipe before hitting the tree? So was some type of pipe added there recently, that doesn’t show in Google Street view?

    • olballcoach says:

      That is not where the crash occurred. It happened at 621 N. Highland Drive.

    • GuyMontag425 says:

      @ your Point 1). Water pipe location. I shared your concerns when I thought the pipe location was close to the n-bound side. But, after reviewing the video again, I think it’s location was by the other metal cover closer to the tree, close to the S-bound side And take a look at the photo in It appears to be the third cover close to the s-bound side.

      It I’m correct, then there is not need to figure out how the car manaaged to “veer back” to hit the tree.

    • olballcoach says:

      as I said I found the third metal plate or lid. That was simply not where the water in the loud labs video was coming from – way to close to the car.

    • GuyMontag425 says:

      You might be right about the 3rd plate location not being correct. Looking again at the after crash video (especially the last part), it looks like the pipe location was about 10-20 ft north of the tree toward the center of the median by a 4th metal plate not shown on google maps (in a post-crash video an orange cone marked the location and a blogger has a close-up (unfortunately too close) of the broken pipe (see

      It would be nice to have a decent photo/video of the pipe location instead of having to speculate on it (or be lucky enough to be in the LA area to be able to take a look for yourself.

    • GuyMontag425 says:

      Finally! I just found a few pictures of the orange cone marking the pipe location:

      Hard to tell the distance from the tree, but the location is definitely just west of the centerline of the median.

    • olballcoach says:

      So, this means he would have had to do a whoop dee doo left right and hard left back into the tree in order to run over that supposed protruding pipe. Perhaps not as pronounced as he would have had it been the two plates to the left on the median. Or, it means he ran over that third plate and was dragging some or a piece of under carriage which scrapped and “sparked” just before impact. This makes more sense and is sort of agreeable with the authors description….It certainly puts the car in a direction more consistent with what we see in the video. And it means the only thing that could have caused that sturdy looking water main to rupture and gush like it did – is an explosion. Witnesses confirm this – and now we have an idea that must have been a pretty large blast.
      As I have pointed out above – the immaculent ejection is hard to believe at this point and I am sticking with ejection prior to or after impact. And I am leaning towards an explosion again prior to or after impact to get the angle necessary to lift that object as far as it did.

    • olballcoach says:

      it just occurred to me that the “4rth plate” indicated by the orange cone in the middle of the median in the piks you provided – just may be where they had to dig to get to a valve to shut the water off that was flowing from one of the two plates to the left on the median. just guessing.

    • GuyMontag425 says:

      Look at the close up photo of the orange cone at the end of the post:

      Doesn’t look “dug up” to me.

    • olballcoach says:


    • GuyMontag425 says:

      @ Point 4). Angle of impact. It looks like Hasting’s car went into the median strip, took out the water piping, then hit the tree with the left front of the car which ejected engine (rare but it happens), and car pivoted to the right to rest at a 90 -degree angle from the road.

      If you look at google maps, you can draw a straight line from the tree to where the engine ended up down the street, that matches the angle of impact of this scenario and Michael’s video.

    • olballcoach says:

      but on google maps there is no sign of piping protruding from the grass at or near the impact site – only those flat meter lids. Yet north of the impact (towards Melrose) there is piping sticking up plain as day. As I said – I dont know when the google piks were taken – but the piping would have been installed when the median strip was built.
      Second, yes, – my point exactly – the angle of trajectory from impact to resting place is through the tree. Through the tree. Therefore, the ejection must have taken place at point before or after impact so as to be unobstructed by the tree.
      At impacted, ejected motor would have had to eject clean without nicking or grazing the palm to arrive at its destination. Otherwise being so close to the tree – any touch no matter how slight would have thrown it off by a signficant distance from where it ended up.
      I dont know what to make of the article – I am just looking at what I see and put two and two together. I am not making assumptions about bombs or conspiracies – just saying – its mighty difficult to logically deduce the cause of the engine ending up where it did from the impact.

    • GuyMontag425 says:

      I wouldn’t assume “the piping would have installed when the median strip was built.”; It certainly seems it could have been put in later after the google piks wre taken (they usually seem to be a year of two behind the present day). Maybe different piping from the rest?

      I never said the car hit the tree directly head on; I wrote It could have hit with the LEFT FRONT of the car (engine continued forward just past the right of the tree) and then the car rotated to the right to rest at close to a right angle to the road.

      This scenario agrees with the author who wrote, “The front of the car, particularly on the driver’s side, was badly damaged.”

    • olballcoach says:

      I dont know about the piping installation – I am just assuming that since it is in place 300 feet to the north – one can reasonably assume that piping would have been installed 300 feet further southt at the same time – but who knows? They’re gubmint workers….
      Anyway – I just went back and looked at the site on google maps – there is a lid of some sort 10 feet down from the tree and to the right of the median. Therefore there could have been piping and it was struck by Hastings car just as described by the authors.
      But – we dont see water gushing that close to the car – it would have gushed all over Michael himself – thats how close that piping might have been.
      But lets say something was protruding the car struck it but no water came out – this matches the authors description better – the car would have struck the tree as you say just off head on – slightly to the left.
      Again I ask: how does that engine eject cleanly from the car (almost like a Building 7 free fall – wouldnt ya say) with such height and velocity at a trajectory angle that does not graze or nick that tree? If you look at the pictures of that tree its got to be 3 feet wide or more at the base.
      It does not eject at the impact site.

  102. abbeysbooks says:

    Abbie Hoffman was declared a suicide from depression when his friends said he was not and had a lot of future plans on the burner. Jerry Rubin was killed by a hit and run in New York City.

    Having personally been in my car when the gas pedal stuck and at a different time when the brakes just weren’t there. The two together would be fatal.

    • Corey says:

      If anyone ever runs into that unfortunate situation, I imagine the best thing to do would be to run into another car or energy-absorptive object asap. But that goes against every instinct a driver has…until it’s too late.

    • Ark says:

      Actually you’d pop it in to neutral and blow the engine.

    • Corey says:


    • kusokurae says:

      Or just turn the car off.

    • Guest says:

      Jerry died at UCLA Hospital November 28, 1994, two weeks after he was hit by a car while he was jaywalking across Wilshire Blvd in Westwood, between Manning and Shelby Ave, about six miles or so from the site of Michael Hastings’ death. It was not a hit and run. LAPD did not cite or detain the driver of the car that hit him.

      I have witnessed a car crash into several trees at speed and seen the driver walk away, injured and bloodied but whole. The car did not catch fire or explode, though it was totally wrecked, with wheels, fenders and other assorted parts left scattered on the road.

      The Hastings crash is evocative of something else.

    • abbeysbooks says:

      Urban myths certainly get changed eh. No citation for it. Now that I didn’t know.And they let the driver go right away. I think John Kennedy Jr. was seen as a potential threat in the future. And Paul Wellstone of WI certainly was already.

    • olballcoach says:

      the list is long and profound.

    • abbeysbooks says:

      All the conspiracy theorists are connecting eh.

  103. queenvictrola says:

    James Corbett of Cortbettreport has an excellent piece entitled crashes-of-convenience. Look it up on utube.

  104. 8thgenerationamerican says:

    Why is the footage from the video not shown? It is evidence. It ought to be in the public domain so that it doesn’t just disappear some day.

    • Adriaen22 says:

      A local resident said that the tape from the pizza restaurant was turned over to the police…you know, the ones who won’t let anyone view the wreckage, read the police reports, etc

    • 8thgenerationamerican says:

      But the entire article is written about the video which the reporter had access to and could easily have copied.

    • Adriaen22 says:

      Assume they did not copy it before it was given to LAPD, otherwise they would have posted it

  105. sgtdoom says:

    Why am I sooo reminded of the death of Gary Webb (author of Dark Alliance and former investigative reporter)?

    Excellent article!

    (Not to sound glib, but, Accident Man, anyone?????)

  106. GeoH says:

    Just a grammar check: “, “I’ve spent more time in Iraq then you have, man.”

    • russbaker says:

      ” *than* * — fixed. thanks

    • abbeysbooks says:

      If you study Saussure you will find that words are in flux for a long time, back and forth, until one dominates. An example would be further and farther. It cannot be stopped so useless to focus on a detail in an important story.

  107. John McCloud says:

    The author writes: “Hastings ran at least two red lights, and possibly a third. Could a
    hacker have planned for no cross traffic, which might have derailed the
    mission?” Why would running into another car have derailed the mission? A collision with another car at 80+ miles an hour is just as likely to result in death as crashing into a tree.

    • abbeysbooks says:

      If a gas pedal is stuck low down and the brakes don’t work you would run 3 red lights if they were there. The hump at the intersection may have been just the perfect touch. IF they were after him this was probably not the first time.

  108. SO says:

    It’s nice that somebody’s keeping this alive. I want to know where he was before he got in his car. He’s married. Was he home with his wife? Was he bar hopping? Surely these questions can be answered. The NSA can tell us who he was talking to and even what was said, can’t they? Why did he tell people the FBI was investigating him? Was he a raving lunatic?

    • colinjames71 says:

      Depends how you define raving lunatic. Some people might consider one a tanning lunatic to be taking on and pissing off military/intelligence plus establishment media and also supposedly he was working on a big story- CIA maybe? Can’t recall what i read exactly, and how accurate that report is I’m not sure. He was worried. That much is certain. Wonder if anyone has any part of that work. And if they did, would they release it or follow up on it,especially if they had suspicions that story rather than any past work was likely responsible for his assassination, if that were the case.

    • nweastcoaster says:

      He may have told people the FBI was investigating him so that if the worst happened, they would have a clue of who may have been involved.

    • abbeysbooks says:

      For sure he was on the FBI radar.

  109. colinjames71 says:

    Would be helpful to determine if the flash of light was the brakes or not. I also wonder though, even if the car was hacked and the brakes disabled, if he pumped the brakes hard enough, many times, it might trigger the brake lights for an instant. Doubtful to me this was 100% accidental, as in not being (or believing he was being) chased, drunk and/or high and driving like that for no reason other than the pure thrill of it. I know, shocking right? I’m being as conservatively skeptical in my assessment here as possible, and even with that frame of mind, purely accidental crash is a very low probability imho. Also i would love to hear from a technical expert on the mechanics of hacking into his car- what would be the likely method? What range would be necessary to hack remotely? What if there was physical manipulation of the car’s chip(s?), could they then do it from a great distance? And even then you would need someone spotting his location no? Or would gps location be enough to determine the best place to trigger the fatal control manipulation? Are there forward-facing cameras in that model of Mercedes? What about the possible suvs passing the pizza place shortly before Hastings, any determination of those cars’ identities? I know what i think happened in general, but it’s such pure speculation- in line with just about everyone else who doesn’t buy the accident theory- i don’t even need to state it out loud. It’s basically 2 + 2= 4. The problem is, variables we’ll never know for sure most likely, such as the veracity of the toxicology report, the official investigation in general, likely no opportunity for an independent investigator to gain accesses to any piece of the car much less what remains of computer components, or access to 100% of 100% guaranteed raw video from traffic cams in the area before and after the crash. Not that all that would be necessary to come to very strong conclusions about what happened, but i sure do wonder what those things might tell us. More than we’ll ever be told, i can guarantee THAT. );>)
    Edited for spelling/grammar.

    • abbeysbooks says:

      It is always good to remember Occam’s Razor.

    • colinjames71 says:

      Thank you for that. And by that do you mean, the simplest explanation is that brand new mercedes don’t explode on impact, or our super shady shadow govt agencies will go to any length to silence people? );>)

    • abbeysbooks says:

      Yes I do mean exactly that. Our govt is corrupt to the core. It is irreversible and can’t be fixed. But we must fight it all the same. Our courts are a charade shown by Zimmerman, not that we didn’t know that before.

    • DWornock says:

      That is correct, A new Mercedes would not burst into flames. That happens in movies because it makes it exciting. However, in real life, car crashes don’t result in the cars busting into flames. The cars and gas tanks are designed so that cannot happen.