Saturday, 17 March 2018

EXPLOSIVE new evidence on the Scripal case from Craig Murray

Of A Type Developed By Liars
Craig Murray


16 March, 2018


I have now received confirmation from a well placed FCO source that Porton Down scientists are not able to identify the nerve gas as being of Russian manufacture, and have been resentful of the pressure being placed on them to do so. Porton Down would only sign up to the formulation “of a type developed by Russia” after a rather difficult meeting where this was agreed as a compromise formulation. The Russians were allegedly researching, in the “Novichok” programme a generation of nerve agents which could be produced from commercially available precursors such as insecticides and fertilisers. This substance is a “novichok” in that sense. It is of that type. Just as I am typing on a laptop of a type developed by the United States, though this one was made in China.
To anybody with a Whitehall background this has been obvious for several days. The government has never said the nerve agent was made in Russia, or that it can only be made in Russia. The exact formulation “of a type developed by Russia” was used by Theresa May in parliament, used by the UK at the UN Security Council, used by Boris Johnson on the BBC yesterday and, most tellingly of all, “of a type developed by Russia” is the precise phrase used in the joint communique issued by the UK, USA, France and Germany yesterday:
This use of a military-grade nerve agent, of a type developed by Russia, constitutes the first offensive use of a nerve agent in Europe since the Second World War.
When the same extremely careful phrasing is never deviated from, you know it is the result of a very delicate Whitehall compromise. My FCO source, like me, remembers the extreme pressure put on FCO staff and other civil servants to sign off the dirty dossier on Iraqi WMD, some of which pressure I recount in my memoir Murder in Samarkand. She volunteered the comparison to what is happening now, particularly at Porton Down, with no prompting from me.
Separately I have written to the media office at OPCW to ask them to confirm that there has never been any physical evidence of the existence of Russian Novichoks, and the programme of inspection and destruction of Russian chemical weapons was completed last year.
Did you know these interesting facts?
OPCW inspectors have had full access to all known Russian chemical weapons facilities for over a decade – including those identified by the “Novichok” alleged whistleblower Mirzayanov – and last year OPCW inspectors completed the destruction of the last of 40,000 tonnes of Russian chemical weapons
By contrast the programme of destruction of US chemical weapons stocks still has five years to run
Israel has extensive stocks of chemical weapons but has always refused to declare any of them to the OPCW. Israel is not a state party to the Chemical Weapons Convention nor a member of the OPCW. Israel signed in 1993 but refused to ratify as this would mean inspection and destruction of its chemical weapons. Israel undoubtedly has as much technical capacity as any state to synthesise “Novichoks”.
Until this week, the near universal belief among chemical weapons experts, and the official position of the OPCW, was that “Novichoks” were at most a theoretical research programme which the Russians had never succeeded in actually synthesising and manufacturing. That is why they are not on the OPCW list of banned chemical weapons.
Porton Down is still not certain it is the Russians who have apparently synthesised a “Novichok”. Hence “Of a type developed by Russia”. Note developed, not made, produced or manufactured.
It is very carefully worded propaganda. Of a type developed by liars.
UPDATE
This post prompted another old colleague to get in touch. On the bright side, the FCO have persuaded Boris he has to let the OPCW investigate a sample. But not just yet. The expectation is the inquiry committee will be chaired by a Chinese delegate. The Boris plan is to get the OPCW also to sign up to the “as developed by Russia” formula, and diplomacy to this end is being undertaken in Beijing right now.
I don’t suppose there is any sign of the BBC doing any actual journalism on this?

This was followed by the following commentary from Off-Guardian

UK’s “novichok” claim exposed as lies: what is the current reality of the Skripal case?


Such an admission from such a source is damning, and devastating for the government’s bid to create momentum for fresh international action against Russia. We can doubt it’s a full admission, and it may well leave out much information that would even further reduce the credibility of the government’s position (it is, after all an internal Foreign Office source), but as such it is still enough to be sure Theresa May was effectively lying to the British parliament.
It’s an indication, if any more were needed, that extreme scepticism is required here. An undisclosed agenda is driving things and driving them so hard even members of the political establishment are concerned.

Until we know what the true aims are we simply can’t accept anything told to us at face value. Everything should be open to question.

So, what do we currently know with reasonable certainty?

1. We can be fairly sure a man called Sergey Skripal really exists. He has a well-documented history in Russia and in the UK prior to this event. We can equally assume he had a wife who died in 2012, a son who died in Russia, and a daughter called Yulia, who lives in Russia most of the time.

2. We can be fairly sure Yulia really was in Salisbury at the time of the incident and has been unable to communicate with the outside world since that time. If she had been in touch with friends/family in Russia they would have said so and the Russian media would have broadcast the fact even if ours didn’t.

3. We can be fairly sure two people were found in a state of distress and collapse on a public bench in Salisbury at the approximate time stated. Occam’s Razor would suggest it’s most probable these two people were indeed Sergey and Yulia Skripal, though with no photographic or film evidence that remains simply an informed assumption.

4. We know that neither Skripal has made any public appearance or statement since that time, and that they are currently alleged to be in Salisbury hospital ICU suffering from the effects of a “nerve agent”.

5. We know a local policeman, Detective Sergeant Nick Bailey, is also alleged to be in the same hospital having been contaminated by the same “nerve agent”. How he came to be contaminated is still not clear, and two conflicting stories have been promoted.

a)The first story was that Bailey became contaminated while visiting Skripal’s home.

b)A subsequent story emerged however that he had been one of the first on the scene at the bench where the Skripal’s were discovered, and had been contaminated while trying to assist them.

Given the fact Bailey is allegedly a detective in the CID (Criminal Investigation Department) and not a uniformed officer, the claim he was a first responder on the scene seems to make little sense. CID detectives are dispatched to investigate known crimes and crime scenes. They don’t do patrol duty and are not sent as emergency responders.

The first story that Bailey became contaminated while investigating the Skripal home seems to fit better with the claim that he is an officer in the CID. The change in narrative about this is currently unexplained.

Bailey’s condition is variously reported as “serious” (Amber Rudd, March 10) and as improving (the Chief Constable for Wiltshire, March 8). There has been no interview with Bailey or with any member of his family as yet, though as of today Bailey’s alleged father-in-law has allegedly come forward to criticise Jeremy Corbyn for asking for evidence before blaming Russia. No photographs of or filmed interviews with said father-in-law have yet been published.

6. We know that almost immediately upon this incident occurring a media campaign of almost unprecedented intensity began to generate what looked like a pre-prepared story that the Skripals had been poisoned by Russia. This claim has been “supported” by untruths and manipulations so questionable even anonymous FCO sources are worried about the wisdom and ethics on display. It has also been used to promote a number of agendas including:

a) finally ditching Brexit (because being in the EU would allegedly protect the UK from further “Russian aggression”).
b) closing down RT in the UK
c) moving/postponing the World Cup
d) imposing fresh sanctions on Russia
e) giving Theresa May her “Falklands moment” in a bid to revive her tanking popularity.
f) putting pressure on Trump to be more pro-active in condemning Russia.
7. We know Russia has completely denied any involvement in the Skripal poisoning.And the lack of obvious motive for them to initiate such an attack has been acknowledged even by members of the Uk establishment.
8. We know the UK has refused Russia’s request to give them samples of the alleged “novichok” for analysis. No specific reason for denying the request has yet been given.
9. We know the UK has blocked Russia’s Resolution in the UN calling for a “co-operative international investigation in line with OPCW standards”

Again no specific reason or this obstruction has yet been given.

Clearly we currently are in no position to know what really happened to the Skripals, how it happened, where it happened or who was responsible.
Just as clearly the government and media are lying.

In addition the media are trying to work up a jingoistic anti-Russia hysteria that has no parallel in recent times. Not even the 2003 media frenzy to get pubic opinion behind the illegal war on Iraq reached these heights.

The obvious conclusion from this, if Russia were not a nuclear power, would be that the British state machine is trying to prepare the people for war with Russia. 

Unless the entire British government has lost its mind this specific aim would seem unlikely. However that something fairly major in terms of escalation in the “New Cold War” is being planned seems a reasonable inference at this point.

It may well be that in future days or weeks Porton Down scientists will announce they finally do have proof of Russia’s involvement in creating this still largely mythical “novichok”.

We suggest taking any such future declaration with a great deal of scepticism.


1 comment:

  1. Follow the money. Exactly how did Skripal and his daughter earn a living? Did Skripal ever travel back to Russia after his imprisonment? Can this so called nerve poison be transmitted by air or only by contact?

    ReplyDelete