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racedo
13th Mar 2018, 19:02
Sadly there is little room for honour, decency and truthfulness in modern government, IMHO, that all started to slip away when "sound bites" came to dominate politics.


There is and will always be.
But there are always people who happy to sell out to seek whatever advantage they can gain.
In 1940 there were some people who would happily have sold out to Herr Hitler to gain personal advantage.
It's nothing new as many "Lords" gained their titles and land from selling out to one side or another.
Gov't seek to limit what the public know because in many cases the Public would not condone what people do.
Power corrupts and a sniff at power is all people need.

racedo
13th Mar 2018, 19:05
The international inspections of all the listed chemical and biological agents (and nuclear too, although I never worked in that area) are pretty tough..

The unlisted ones and they will exist are the ones where you can hide stuff, dressed up as "Private" sector research establishments but just an off the books part of Government easily deniable.

VP959
13th Mar 2018, 19:12
After the fall of the criminal dictatorship that was communism Russia had the opportunity to become part of the free world and all that it offers with democratic elections. Instead it has continued its history of a thousand years of brutal dictatorships. The people have only ever known servitude to powerful rulers and have no concept of or wish to embrace a free democracy. They seem to respect an all powerful ruler and consider that Putin gives them self respect on the world stage..
Another parallel with Hitler between the wars.

Over the years I've met a few Russians, socially, and nothing to do with work. They were probably some of the friendliest and entertaining people I've known, especially if out drinking.

However, one common factor seemed to be a general distrust in democracy as a principle, a powerful belief that all countries needed strong leadership and a very strong feeling of patriotism for Mother Russia.

During the fading years of the former Soviet Union they had weak leadership, with Yeltsin being probably the worst example, staggering around drunk half the time. When Vladimir Putin showed himself to be a strong leader, I suspect he was exactly what the Russian people were looking for at that time. He filled the vacuum, restored some pride back to the Russian people, and that meant more to them than democracy, I think.

racedo
13th Mar 2018, 19:20
However, one common factor seemed to be a general distrust in democracy as a principle,

Afraid you don't need to go to Russia to see that...........

West quite happily preaches democracy and the you constantly get
A US Govt (President / Congress and Senate) that relies of Billions in donations to continue the status quo.

A Uk Govt that has rarely ever been elected with 50% of the votes of the people and at local elections it frigged in so many places that a Tory will rarely get elected in many places in the North or someone from Labour in the South.

Role of establishment is to look after establishment not the people.

The Animal Farm parody of Stalinism was correct but now many Western Countrys mirror it but use different methods in doing so.

flash8
13th Mar 2018, 19:33
I worked in the security of Pathogens in the former CIS in a previous life, held at the various NCDC's (US equivalent CDC) over a number of years.

Let me tell you straight from the horses mouth.

Pathogen escape from Russia is impossible, the security surrounding them verges on extreme paranoia... seen it.. been there... got the t-shirt... security is watertight and then unbelievable measures on top of that. They are Pro's.

You want to do something nasty?

Take a few thou (dollars infinitely preferred) to one of the CIS NCDC's and bribe the staff... their Pathogen Asset Control software is crap.... and the physical security is worse. I know 'em all, got that t-shirt as well.

Make sure when you enter the crumbling buildings the bricks don't fall down and hit you on the head (as nearly happened once to me...)

My guess is this wasn't Russia, I'd look more likely at the security of the CIS Labs.

racedo
13th Mar 2018, 19:38
My guess is this wasn't Russia, I'd look more likely at the security of the CIS Labs.

Look at all deaths of security personnel in last 6 months or job changes.

Buster15
13th Mar 2018, 19:40
The fact that the Russian response to any UK punitive action (whatever that may be) is stated to meet that with an opposite retaliation shows (to me) that they are concerned.
If not then they would have simply ignored Mrs May deadline.
The key strategy should be to lobby for a broad international consensus to augment any actions that we choose to take.

flash8
13th Mar 2018, 19:57
Dstl Porton Down is a few miles way... that is coincidental.. but still.

Chronus
13th Mar 2018, 19:58
All the fuss is about a man who wore the uniform of a soldier, sworn to the flag of his country, the very worse kind of spy, a double agent. He was tried and convicted of high treason. We on the other hand seem ready to go to war with his country. Is he worth it, how would we feel if it had been one of our low lives, a traitor.

flash8
13th Mar 2018, 20:03
All the fuss is about a man who wore the uniform of a soldier, sworn to the flag of his country, the very worse kind of spy, a double agent. He was tried and convicted of high treason. We on the other hand seem ready to go to war with his country. Is he worth it, how would we feel if it had been one of our low lives, a traitor.

Indeed Chronus he was a traitor that likely sent many agents to their deaths in dodgier countries. He elicits no sympathy from me. The collateral damage eventually must lay at his door. for he is ultimately responsible.

The manner of his current demise however I suspect was engineered to discredit Russia, either by local state actors or further afield.

Buster15
13th Mar 2018, 20:13
All the fuss is about a man who wore the uniform of a soldier, sworn to the flag of his country, the very worse kind of spy, a double agent. He was tried and convicted of high treason. We on the other hand seem ready to go to war with his country. Is he worth it, how would we feel if it had been one of our low lives, a traitor.

So it is perfectly acceptable for another state to use nerve agents against anyone in a city in the UK.
Whether he was a spy or a double agent has nothing to do with it. A foreign country cannot be allowed to use such nerve agents in a populated location in this country. Full stop.

BruisedCrab
13th Mar 2018, 20:13
Of course comrades, you must be right 🤨

ORAC
13th Mar 2018, 20:21
Moscow trolls and cyber agents out in force tonight.

One wonders who the true patriots in Russia are; those who bow their heads and obey the kleptocrats, oligarchs and murders in the Kremlin from the old security services - or those being killed, exiled or imprisoned for opposing them.

I have a lot more respect for Solzhenitsyn than Putin.

Jetex_Jim
13th Mar 2018, 20:24
https://www.reuters.com/article/us-britain-russia-eu/despite-brexit-britain-wins-eu-support-on-nerve-agent-attack-idUSKCN1GP0R9
Despite tensions over Britain’s decision to quit the bloc next year, EU leaders, top officials and NATO reacted in quick succession after British Prime Minister Theresa May’s speech in the British parliament on Monday on the poisoning of a former Russian double agent, Sergei Skripal, and his daughter.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel spoke to May on Tuesday, a day after French President Emmanuel Macron, and both leaders condemned the attack in statements on Tuesday.

“(Merkel) said it’s up to Russia to quickly provide answers to the British government’s justified questions and to heed the call to completely and immediately lay bare the relevant chemical weapons programme to the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons,” said Merkel’s spokesman Steffen Seibert, referring to the watchdog in The Hague.

Rather more proactive than Donald.

BruisedCrab
13th Mar 2018, 20:24
The Russian trolls have been hard at it ever since the poisoning. We know who you are asshats, you stand out like a Red thumb.

Why not have a vodka, give the trolling a rest and consider the murderous regime you work for.

Lonewolf_50
13th Mar 2018, 20:54
Nikolai Glushkov has cashed in his chips. (http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/russian-exile-nikolai-glushkov-found-dead-at-his-london-home/ar-BBKaAi7?li=AA4Zpp&ocid=ientp)

Related, or a coincidence?

A Russian exile who was close friends with the late oligarch Boris Berezovsky has been found dead in his London home, according to friends.
Nikolai Glushkov, 68, was discovered by his family and friends late on Monday night. The cause of death is not yet clear. One of his friends, the newspaper editor Damian Kudryavtsev, posted the news on his Facebook page.
Without confirming the man’s name, the Metropolitan police said the counter-terrorism command unit was leading the investigation into the death “as a precaution because of associations that the man is believed to have had

ShotOne
13th Mar 2018, 20:58
All the fuss is not about "someone who wore the uniform of a soldier.."; wrong on every level. This was a brutal and reckless act in a peaceful town centre. As for the bots here who are plugging the nonsensical line that it's somehow a U.K. Govt provocation. So we'd poison our own former asset, a policeman and any random passers-by To what possible end?

And let it be noted the priority of Mr Corbyn with "his" nation under attack is petty party-political point-scoring. His opportunism especially blatant when he was so reluctant to discuss political funding during the recent Mosley storm-in-teacup

flash8
13th Mar 2018, 21:58
I will say this for what its worth.

Whoever committed this act likely viewed a weakened British state battered by domestic and European politics, which is why I'd discount the UK being behind it, whoever did this knew that the response would be weak and that is why they struck now... it was purely semi-opportunistic backed by a long game, one that only states play.

Can't say who was behind it but always discount the official narratives as they are there only to serve the purpose of the government of the day, that isn't to say Russia is not involved, but it does serve as a convenient bogeyman.

I once had a long discussion with an eminent (now departed) US Bioterrorism Scientist Roger Breeze in a Kazakh nightclub where he told me "Flash, this stuff is so easy to get hold of it scares the shit out of me"... which kind of scared me as well!

racedo
13th Mar 2018, 22:46
All the fuss is not about "someone who wore the uniform of a soldier.."; wrong on every level. This was a brutal and reckless act in a peaceful town centre. As for the bots here who are plugging the nonsensical line that it's somehow a U.K. Govt provocation. So we'd poison our own former asset, a policeman and any random passers-by To what possible end?


The Govt has claimed it was a Nerve agent attack and everybody must believe them because they said it.

HMG lied over getting involved in Kosovo, Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria and many more but we should always believe them because they say so.

I was dubious about Kosovo and proven right as to seeing media spin on what was supposed to be happening.

On Iraq the claims were garbage as any reasonable view would show but labelled a Traitor by a friend because he believed the spin, his son served and sadly came back in a coffin after a couple of tours. I attended the funeral and occasionally meet the dad.

A citizens job is to question the Govt rather than automatically accept everything they state without question backed up by a pliable media.
Here is when we allow Govt to do as it wishes.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fred_Holroyd

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colin_Wallace

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Weir_(loyalist)

If we do not question Government and allow them free sanction to do as they wish on the basis of claimed "National Security" then we are as responsible for the actions.

The UK media and establishment love in with Herr Hitler in 1930's should be a warning of how just going along with a Govt almost allowed the Nazi's in.

galaxy flyer
13th Mar 2018, 22:59
lonewolf50,

May not be related, but I’d bet it were the Russians that did him in.


GF

KelvinD
13th Mar 2018, 23:04
I am puzzled by Theresa May's instant "Russia is guilty" attitude, given without so much as an inquiry, let alone a formal judicial process of the sort we pride ourselves upon.
And for all those outraged by whatever happened to this man, how about this:
It is claimed, by an Israeli intelligence commentator, that Mossad may have been responsible for 2,700 deaths (murders) outside Israel? Let's see some outrage along similar lines to the subject of a dead MI6 agent.

Harry Wayfarers
14th Mar 2018, 00:30
From what I've been reading both his wife and his son died not so long ago and are in graves in Salisbury, what were their causes of deaths?

His daughter recently travelled to Salisbury to join him, clearly she was followed, where did she travel from, Russia by chance?

And Russia didn't willingly let him go, he was part of a trade-off to get some of their own people back.

Krystal n chips
14th Mar 2018, 07:14
Moscow trolls and cyber agents out in force tonight.

One wonders who the true patriots in Russia are; those who bow their heads and obey the kleptocrats, oligarchs and murders in the Kremlin from the old security services - or those being killed, exiled or imprisoned for opposing them.

I have a lot more respect for Solzhenitsyn than Putin.

ORAC !

I am shocked at this lapse !

Shurely it's always been considered bad form for GCHQ operatives ( just to maintain the lexicon of this thread here ) to break cover in the way you have in your opening paragraph ! You of all people should shurely be aware of summat called "Bead window" and "Opsec " !!

Unless, of course......

JB War Cabinet positions starting to emerge....

ORAC.....Minister of Defence.

Followed by....

Shot One.....Minister for Economic Warfare....

"All the fuss is not about "someone who wore the uniform of a soldier.."; wrong on every level. This was a brutal and reckless act in a peaceful town centre. As for the bots here who are plugging the nonsensical line that it's somehow a U.K. Govt provocation. So we'd poison our own former asset, a policeman and any random passers-by To what possible end?

And let it be noted the priority of Mr Corbyn with "his" nation under attack is petty party-political point-scoring. His opportunism especially blatant when he was so reluctant to discuss political funding during the recent Mosley storm-in-teacup"

Woke up this morning expecting to hear the sound of "Bears" in the EMA hold, alas, the only props heard was something that sounded like a shagged out ATP climbing at its usual 1000ft/ hr.roc.

However, the plot thuckens....

More snow and an East wind forecast this weekend....so that's the chemtrail conspiracy firmly established.

And, this was clearly a co-ordinated attempt to force a GE to depose St Theresa, install Corbyn thereafter as PM.... so that's the UK sorted as a Russian satellite state !

Both of the above hypothesis for the benefit of the JB political analysis and surreal speculations cognoscenti only please note, not that I would ever question their modesty and expertise in such matters of national importance.

The only thing missing from the mainstream media, so far, has been Farage claiming the millions of immigrants are, in fact, Russian Spetsnaz now already established in the UK for the planned takeover....and lets face it, he probably would if he thought he could get away with it given his other successes in providing disinformation over the years.

I have to go into Derby later, but, I will keep a watchful eye on the skies for the first wave of paratroops

There is, of course, a serious aspect to this event and the reaction of the Gov't will be interesting to learn because, being realistic, what response or reprisals can the UK offer that will adversely affect Russia to the extent an admission of guilt and acts of contrition emerge.

.

BruisedCrab
14th Mar 2018, 07:30
K n c

I’m probably not allowed to write that you are a pretentious arse. But you know what I’m thinking.

VP959
14th Mar 2018, 07:30
From what I've been reading both his wife and his son died not so long ago and are in graves in Salisbury, what were their causes of deaths?

His daughter recently travelled to Salisbury to join him, clearly she was followed, where did she travel from, Russia by chance?

And Russia didn't willingly let him go, he was part of a trade-off to get some of their own people back.

His wife died of cancer on 2012, his son died whilst on a visit from the UK to Russia in 2017, of acute liver failure. Both are buried in the local cemetery. His older brother died in the last couple of years in Russia.

His daughter moved back to work in Russia and is reported to have since visited a few times. This visit was around a year after her brother's death, and they visited the cemetery together. It's been reported that she was very close to her father.

Russia officially pardoned him of his crimes, then let him go as a part of an exchange. I would guess the pardon was just part of the process to allow the exchange, as they presumably couldn't release him whilst he was still officially serving a sentence. His sentence was 13 years, not a particularly heavy sentence given the crime. He was not a double agent, according to what we've been told, he worked for MI6, but I've seen nothing to suggest that he also spied on the UK, and suspect that, as he was given money and a pension in order to live here after the exchange that's probably true.

jolihokistix
14th Mar 2018, 07:38
The Russian argument that the timing does not make sense before an election may be true in and of itself.


On the other hand, this could well be a warning to (X) (someone prominent) who is secretly planning to leave Russia for exile in the UK. Neither you nor your etc. Many scenarios are possible.

rusty sparrow
14th Mar 2018, 07:43
Would a spectrographic analysis of the nerve agent show conclusive evidence of origin? If this data is made available to Russia, then there's an argument to be answered.

ORAC
14th Mar 2018, 07:43
BruisedCrab,

I would suspect KnC was one if PYNE few who, along with Abbott and Thirnberry, cheered and applauded Corbyn’s response to the PM’s report in parliament - as opposed to the vast majority of Even his own MPs who who either rose to deplore his comments or sat with their heads in their hands.

Krystal n chips
14th Mar 2018, 07:45
K n c

I’m probably not allowed to write that you are a pretentious arse. But you know what I’m thinking.

Well, on the basis of # 268, not very much and neither do you have a sense of humour ( that hardly makes you unique here on JB however, most, if not all, of the chaps being similarly lacking in this respect ) but feel free to write what you like about me.....I will be unlikely to seek counselling for on line harassment.

BruisedCrab
14th Mar 2018, 07:49
Yeah, because attacks on foreign soil with nerve agent are hilarious.

Asshat

Krystal n chips
14th Mar 2018, 07:56
Yeah, because attacks on foreign soil with nerve agent are hilarious.

Asshat

It's not the attack which is providing the hilarity.......you seem to have missed my comments to this effect... it's, erm, well make an inspired guess here.

If it's any consolation to you, I asked the "management " of the heritage railway yesterday ( bearing in mind he didn't know what a frikadelle was ) how he felt about the line and stock being requisitioned for the war effort. This went way above his head.


From my handlers in the Kremlin ( allegedly, although here on JB any and everybody who reads the Guardian and is liberal minded qualifies as being a Soviet agent by default anyway ) just in and recently decrypted

радует хорошее здоровье и имеет приятного мужа

Andy_S
14th Mar 2018, 08:06
The Russian argument that the timing does not make sense before an election may be true in and of itself.

Given that Putin has won that election before a single vote has been cast, I can't see that the Salisbury incident would ever have been a factor.

ORAC
14th Mar 2018, 08:22
From my handlers in the Kremlin As with Corbyn and the Czechs during the Cold War, recruitment was obviously unnecessary.

Lenin himself coined the term “useful idiot” — polezni durak — for those willing to spread propaganda without payment or encouragement.

Sallyann1234
14th Mar 2018, 09:34
I'm sure that if Putin had the time and interest to read this forum, he would be delighted to see the argument and personal animosity that his little chemical activity has engendered.

Hempy
14th Mar 2018, 09:46
Would a spectrographic analysis of the nerve agent show conclusive evidence of origin? If this data is made available to Russia, then there's an argument to be answered.

Given that a nerve agent is exactly something you can whip up in the garden shed or purchase over the counter at your local apothecarists, there’s reasonable grounds to assume that it’s state sponsored. Given the nationality and history of the intended victim, there’s reasonable grounds to assume which state that actually was.

Like he did with Litvinenko, Putin is making a statement. There are plenty of ways of getting rid of someone on the QT....using polonium or lethal nerve agents aren’t one of them. He’s telling anyone who crosses him ‘I can get you anywhere, anytime’. And he pretty much can.

VP959
14th Mar 2018, 09:52
Would a spectrographic analysis of the nerve agent show conclusive evidence of origin? If this data is made available to Russia, then there's an argument to be answered.

Yes, that's in essence what the signature is that I referred to earlier. Only Russia developed the novichok range of agents during the latte part of the Cold War era, and they did so with the specific aims of making agents that were not detectable by the West and that may have circumvented the prohibition on chemical weapons.

The signatures were allegedly obtained from one or more Russian defectors, but we almost certainly don't know the whole story, or even a significant part of it. We do know the signatures though, although these agents are so rare (they've never previously been deployed, AFAIK) that it wasn't immediately obvious that one of the novichok agents had been used.

VP959
14th Mar 2018, 10:07
I'm sure that if Putin had the time and interest to read this forum, he would be delighted to see the argument and personal animosity that his little chemical activity has engendered.

That's if it was Putin who authorised this attack. It could just as easily be someone else in Russia with access to these agents and the knowledge, physical capability and experience needed to dispense, store, transport and deploy one of them, for reasons unknown, but perhaps related to a strong sense of patriotism and a hatred of traitors.

I think this is more likely than an actively state sponsored attack, but that doesn't remove the liability from the state, as clearly they had an obligation to ensure these agents were either destroyed, or stored very securely and vet anyone who had the knowledge needed to carry this attack out.

This was far from an easy attack to carry out. It needed highly trained people to do several very hazardous tasks. Someone had to acquire the agent, and have access to the containment facilities needed to dispense a small quantity of it into a suitable container. They had to ensure they decontaminated the outside of the container and secure it within a clean secondary container. Someone had to have the knowledge, and access to the facilities, to design some form of delivery mechanism that would not pose a significant risk to the attacker. Someone had to have the knowledge, and access to specialised facilities to both transfer the agent to the delivery mechanism and to test that it worked, all within a safe and controlled containment environment. Finally, someone had to be trained to transport the agent safely from Russia to the UK and carry out the attack.

This was not just some crazy assassin, it was extremely well planned and organised, and needed access to both people with a great deal of expertise in the subject and facilities capable of being used for all the preparatory work.

Doing all this without the knowledge of the state points to either extremely lax controls by that state or the state providing the facilities, or allowing them to be covertly used.

Buster15
14th Mar 2018, 11:34
VP959.
Good to read something sensible about this subject apart from the expected trolls and political point scorers.
The real shame is that IMHO the UK alone is not likely to have sufficient clout to make Russia take any notice. That is probably why they chose this attack.
I do believe though that they are testing not just us but far more importantly to find out whether our allies are prepared to support a creditable response. In particular Europe and the USA.
If there really is a 'special relationship' the USA must support if not lead the appropriate response. Thus far the silence is deafening is it not.

rusty sparrow
14th Mar 2018, 11:46
Yes, that's in essence what the signature is that I referred to earlier. <snip>

Sorry, VP959, I must have missed that earlier posting. Thanks for your informed comments on this story.

crewmeal
14th Mar 2018, 11:49
The easiest answer to sort all this out would be for Mrs May to call Mr Putin and say I'm coming over on the next flight to talk all this out face to face. All these threats will do no good to either side. (perhaps she could take a sample of the agent in her handbag) End of!!

Effluent Man
14th Mar 2018, 11:49
The support for the UK will be limited due to the fact that the circumstantial evidence amounts to little more than a balance of probabilities verdict. It wouldn't stand up in a court of law in a criminal case.

ORAC
14th Mar 2018, 13:36
Circumstantial evidence can be used to gain a conviction if all the evidence points at guilt and no reasonable hypothesis can point to a different conclusion.

Sallyann1234
14th Mar 2018, 13:38
Well it's started:
Russian spy: UK to expel 23 Russian diplomats - BBC News (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-43402506)

Stand by for reprisals...

Thomas coupling
14th Mar 2018, 13:40
What can she do:

Close the embassy - (very unlikely).
Send x numbers of russian diplomats back - yawn.
Deport half a dozen dodgy Oligarcs based in London.

Putin must be quaking in his russian fur lined boots.

Buster15
14th Mar 2018, 14:14
The easiest answer to sort all this out would be for Mrs May to call Mr Putin and say I'm coming over on the next flight to talk all this out face to face. All these threats will do no good to either side. (perhaps she could take a sample of the agent in her handbag) End of!!

Brilliant. So what if he ignores her or more likely keeps her waiting for hours if not days. It would be demeaning in the extreme.
This was a planned and not reckless action. Whether orchestrated by Putin or not we do not know and probably will never know. What is important is the method of response.
Remember,Putin however bad
we think is made more popular at home by this type of action.

Krystal n chips
14th Mar 2018, 14:15
VP959.
Good to read something sensible about this subject apart from the expected trolls and political point scorers.
The real shame is that IMHO the UK alone is not likely to have sufficient clout to make Russia take any notice. That is probably why they chose this attack.
I do believe though that they are testing not just us but far more importantly to find out whether our allies are prepared to support a creditable response. In particular Europe and the USA.
If there really is a 'special relationship' the USA must support if not lead the appropriate response. Thus far the silence is deafening is it not.

Whilst lauding praise is far from unreasonable, I would politely suggest you do a little research into the posting history.

You see, irrespective of a topic, it's amazing just how often personal involvement appears..... along with those unfortunate anomalies which subsequently tend to contradict themselves.

Let's say most of us have encountered similar in real life. But on a website with many contributors who are closely aligned in their self perceptions and ideologies, such commentary will be taken by many at face value. But, this being JB and by way of balance, there is another contributor from America who has also had, with acknowledgments to the originator of this assessment here, " A truly remarkable career ".

Thus for those of us who take some aspects of life very seriously, and are decidedly more sanguine about others to the extent the latter is the prominent characteristic, along with complete irreverence for the pretentious souls we encounter, the accusations on here are generally "troll ! " or making an "ad hominem " attack....that way, the JB status quo can be maintained....when such criticism appears.

Much of what you read is readily available in the public domain, but, presented in such a manner as to convey original thought. One post in fact( not on this topic ) was lifted directly from another thread on here no less, unfortunately, the facts that were subsequently presented were completely reversed.

There was also one post that should have set alarm bells ringing.

This particular topic is an area most of us have had no exposure to, no pun intended, other than for anybody who has been in the military and the required training at basic level. And even at this level, it doesn't require any specialist knowledge to rapidly understand any contact usually ends in death or complete debilitation to the extent you might as well be, and probably better off, so.

Hence any more detailed knowledge can easily be used to support the established history. But even there, this knowledge doesn't have to be specialist, it just needs to be presented in a convincing manner and..hey presto !..the plaudits flow.

And now, does anybody know if you can get a discount for block bookings LHR -DME ( obviously a few slight changes in the names on the pax list for the return leg ) given the far from unexpected response, and the options appear to be limited anyway, from an equally far from Boadicea emulator.

https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2018/mar/14/may-expels-23-russian-diplomats-response-spy-poisoning

Buster15
14th Mar 2018, 14:25
Whilst lauding praise is far from unreasonable, I would politely suggest you do a little research into the posting history.

You see, irrespective of a topic, it's amazing how just often personal involvement appears..... along with those unfortunate anomalies which subsequently tend to contradict themselves.

Let's say most of us have encountered similar in real life. But on a website with many contributors who are closely aligned in their self perceptions and ideologies, such commentary will be taken by many at face value.

Thus for those of us who take some aspects of life very seriously, and are decidedly more sanguine about others to the extent the latter is the prominent characteristic, along with complete irreverence for the pretentious souls we encounter, the accusations on here are generally "troll ! " or making an "ad hominem " attacks....that way, the JB status quo can be maintained....when such criticism appears.

Much of what you read is readily available in the public domain, but, presented in such a manner as to convey original thought. One post in fact( not on this topic ) was lifted directly from another thread on here no less, unfortunately, the facts that were subsequently presented were completely reversed.

There was also one post that should have set alarm bells ringing.

This particular topic is an area most of us have had no exposure to, no pun intended, other than for anybody who has been in the military and the required training at basic level. And even at this level, it doesn't require any specialist knowledge to rapidly understand any contact usually ends in death or complete debilitation to the extent you might as well be, and probably better off, so.

Hence any more detailed knowledge can easily be used to support the established history. But even there, this knowledge doesn't have to be specialist, it just needs to be presented in a convincing manner and..hey presto !..the plaudits flow.

And now, does anybody know if you can get a discount for block bookings LHR -DME ( obviously a few slight changes in the names on the pax list for the return leg ) given the far from unexpected response, and the options appear to be limited anyway, from an equally far from Boadicea emulator.

https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2018/mar/14/may-expels-23-russian-diplomats-response-spy-poisoning

Sir. I have absolutely no idea of what you are talking about apart from a series of rambling and unconnected statements.
Maybe you ought to explain yourself a tad more clearly.

VP959
14th Mar 2018, 14:47
The inability of the UK to do anything that would be the slightest bit effective in dissuading Russia from allowing, or enabling, either covertly, or overtly, undertaking such attacks in future is really the key here, IMHO.

We can do a bit of tit-for-tat mutual expulsion of diplomats, but frankly the impact would be negligible, in fact it might even be seen as a positive by Russia, in that by expelling a few of ours in return they don't have to commit so much surveillance resource.

We could choose to place sanctions on wealthy Russians living in, and investing in, the UK, but that may well be counterproductive, as I suspect some of them are here because they don't want to in Russia, perhaps because they aren't popular with the Russian government or they disagree with it's policies. How would we pick and choose?

We cannot do anything significant without the full support of our allies, and frankly, when push comes to shove, I rather think any such support would evaporate, given that the primary victim was a Russian traitor.

It does rather beg the question as to what anyone could do to rein in a potential "rogue" state with the power of Russia. I suspect that the answer is very little.

The weakest aspect of the regime in Russia is that it has a potential single point of failure, it's president. During his rule he's suppressed any effective opposition and cowed many of those who work for him. He has no obvious successor, and appears to be supported by people who gain a great deal financially by doing so. Should something happen to him then I suspect there would be a pretty massive turf war amongst the few who felt the job should be theirs. I doubt the outcome of that would be constructive, either for Russia or the West.

I doubt this will be the last such attack, either, and will be interested to find out if the promised investigation into the other suspicious deaths results in any further action. Somehow I doubt it.

denachtenmai
14th Mar 2018, 14:51
apart from a series of rambling and unconnected statements

SOP for knc

ramble on
14th Mar 2018, 15:35
The UK has 5 million plus CCTVs so there should be some vision recorded to help solve the crime.

atakacs
14th Mar 2018, 15:49
Quick question to what appears a fairy knowledgeable crowd: do we have any past exemple of a swapped agent latter kild by ex colleagues?
I would think that there muss be some sort of tacit agreement not to do this?!

Buster15
14th Mar 2018, 15:53
SOP for knc

Phew, though it was just me being dim,,which I am sure others will point out that I indeed am.

VP959
14th Mar 2018, 16:15
Quick question to what appears a fairy knowledgeable crowd: do we have any past exemple of a swapped agent latter kild by ex colleagues?
I would think that there muss be some sort of tacit agreement not to do this?!

In the past there seems to be a tacit agreement not to go after swapped agents, but what seems more powerful, in terms of the law, is that in this case Sergei Skripal was pardoned of his crimes against Russia and once exchanged was granted UK citizenship.

Legally I would guess this wipes the slate clean of anything he was found guilty of in the past, and comes down to the attempted murder of a UK citizen, on UK soil, using a potential weapon of mass destruction in a public place. I'm not sure if his daughter holds UK or Russian citizenship.

Any state that engages in, aids and abets, or by inaction allows, such an attack should be subject to a harsher charge than just attempted murder, in my view, but I really have no idea how international law deals with what seems to be such an unusual, perhaps unique, set of circumstances.

Pity we don't seem to have anyone participating in this thread that has in-depth knowledge as to how international law would classify such an attack, or even if there is an provision in it for dealing with attacks on individuals like this.

There seems to be an argument that using this type of internationally prohibited weapon breached certain agreements, but whether such breaches carry any significant enforceable penalty I don't know.

I doubt they do, solely on the basis that there was virtually no real action taken over the use of Polonium 210 against Alexander Litvinenko. In that case there was proof that the attack was undertaken by the Russian state, yet still very little was done about it.

grateful_pax
14th Mar 2018, 16:19
He’s telling anyone who crosses him ‘I can get you anywhere, anytime’. And he pretty much can.

Yep
There are folks in the US who would think twice whether to keep their mouths shut when Mueller's guys interrogate them

Andy_S
14th Mar 2018, 16:27
Phew, though it was just me being dim,,which I am sure others will point out that I indeed am.

I won't. But KnC surely will. In several hundred words with multiple digressions and several links to The Guardian.

galaxy flyer
14th Mar 2018, 16:46
The UK Government presented the evidence to the Russian government and requested extradition for a criminal trial in the UK. The Russians declined to extradite ending any legal action, I suppose, if they tried to enter the UK, they could be arrested.

Is the an international law regarding assassination and what forum could it be tried in? Assuming the Russians were motivated to turn over the suspects. It’s an “act of war”, IMO, but that the consequences of pursuing that line is beyond consideration, so we await the next murder.

Oh, there’s a law in Russia authorizing these murders.

GF

Sallyann1234
14th Mar 2018, 16:49
I won't. But KnC surely will. In several hundred words with multiple digressions and several links to The Guardian.
This is supposed to be a serious discussion thread on a very important subject.
Why don't you all take your personal fight out into the playground and leave this room clear, before someone comes along and locks the door?

Lonewolf_50
14th Mar 2018, 16:52
Oh, there’s a law in Russia authorizing these murders. That's interesting. Got a good link/ref? This intrigues me. Almost as though we are dealing in a Russian fatwa of some sort, of the more dire variety.

VP959
14th Mar 2018, 17:13
That's interesting. Got a good link/ref? This intrigues me. Almost as though we are dealing in a Russian fatwa of some sort, of the more dire variety.

all I can quickly find is this excerpt from Wikipedia (my highlights):

Litvinenko also commented on a new law that "Russia has the right to carry out pre-emptive strikes on militant bases abroad" and explained that these "pre-emptive strikes may involve anything except nuclear weapons." Litvinenko said, "You know who they mean when they say 'terrorist bases abroad'? They mean us, Zakayev and Boris and me." He also said that "It was considered in our service that poison is an easier weapon than a pistol." He referred to a secret laboratory in Moscow that still continues development of deadly poisons, according to him.

From this Wiki entry: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexander_Litvinenko

I'd apply the usual caution that Wikipedia may not always be a reliable reference source, especially where personal quotes are concerned.

At the time of his murder Alexander Litvinenko was a naturalised British citizen, very like Sergei Skripal

ORAC
14th Mar 2018, 17:15
hat's interesting. Got a good link/ref? This intrigues me.

BBC NEWS | Europe | Russia law on killing 'extremists' abroad (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/europe/6188658.stm)

galaxy flyer
14th Mar 2018, 17:26
And here.

https://www.thedailybeast.com/vladimir-putins-re-election-strategy-nukes-and-assassins

And here,

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/russia/8802732/Leaked-document-reveals-plans-to-eliminate-Russias-enemies-overseas.html

And here,

Has Vladimir Putin Lost Control of Russia?s Assassins? (http://www.newsweek.com/vladimir-putin-lost-control-russia-assassins-840598)

sitigeltfel
14th Mar 2018, 18:30
If, as is his right as a Privy Councillor, agent Cob has been fully briefed on the investigation, it is highly likely that the Kremlin now has all the information.

Thomas coupling
14th Mar 2018, 20:10
Buster15: have you been at the sherry again?

Chronus
14th Mar 2018, 20:17
So it was a Russian bullet, but how certain are we it was fired by a Russian. Let`s not forget we are not dealing with another Saddam Hussein and his fictional WMD`s this time. Thank heavens its Theresa and Trump and not Tony and George with this one. Bad news for London though, won`t be the same without an oligarch or two around.

ORAC
14th Mar 2018, 20:43
USA calls nerve gas poisoning of spy in Britain 'Russia's crime' as UN ambassador Nikki Haley warns VX gas could be used in New York next (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5501649/Nikki-Haley-calls-Salisbury-nerve-agent-attack-Russias-crime.html)

America's ambassador to the United Nations lashed out at Moscow on Wednesday following the March 4 nerve gas attempted assassination of a former Russian intelligence agent and his daughter in Salisbury, England.

Calling the assassination bid 'Russia's crime,' Nikki Haley told the UN Security Council that Vladimir Putin's government already had a long history of covering for rogue regimes – including Syria's – that deploy chemical weapons like VX gas against civilians.

“Russia failed to ensure Syria destroyed their chemical weapons program. Russia killed the joint investigative mechanism when it found Assad liable for chemical attacks. Russia used its veto to shield Assad five times last year. It has also provided cover for Syria in the Hague at the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons”, she said.

“The Russians complained recently that we criticize them too much. If the Russian government stopped using chemical weapons to assassinate its enemies, and if the Russian government stopped helping its Syrian ally to use chemical weapons to kill Syrian children, and if Russia cooperated with the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons by turning over all information related to this nerve agent, we would stop talking about them.”

The all-out denunciation will be welcomed by Britain's prime minister, Theresa May, who expelled 23 Russian diplomats earlier in the day as punishment for the attack.

“Russia 'must account for its actions,” she said, framing the gruesome incident as a case of one Security Council member going rogue against another. “If we don't take immediate concrete measures to address this now, Salisbury will not be the last place that we see chemical weapons used”, Haley predicted. “They could be used here in New York or in cities of any country that sits on this council”......

jindabyne
14th Mar 2018, 21:00
Sir. I have absolutely no idea of what you are talking about



Buster 15. Relax, it's the norm

14th Mar 2018, 21:17
Had to be amused by the idea that FSB messed it up because they didn't die - the whole point of nerve agent was to disable the opposition and make the casualties require medical treatment not burial. Sadly the prognosis for the two victims won't be good.

Giving your 'extremists' a lingering and painful death (just like Litvinenko) is particularly Russian in style - it's all about the message you are sending.

grateful_pax
14th Mar 2018, 21:23
UK would have to wait for several days... until the 4th putin election farce is over
kremlin's msm are turning this hot topic into election PR appealing to ru "conservatives" - most of them want ussr, stalin, kgb and other cold war stuff back, and yes - they hate the West and they are very supportive of "traitor assassinations"
world cup boycott and expulsions is nothing but a gift to kermlin

TWT
15th Mar 2018, 04:25
I realise this source isn't exactly known for its factual reporting but if there's a sliver of truth in this theory, it would possibly pay to wait a little longer until the investigation is complete before throwing all the toys out of the pram.

Unless all possible evidence has been gathered and the report is complete, of course.

https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/5812917/russia-attack-daughter-yulia-real-victim-niece-claims/

Effluent Man
15th Mar 2018, 05:52
Of course it is The Sun. But wouldn't it be great if it turned out to be the MIL to be? Six egg omelette on face time for a Theresa!

LowNSlow
15th Mar 2018, 07:00
Could the attempted murders be a result of a conversation like "who will rid me of this turbulent priest"?

Krystal n chips
15th Mar 2018, 07:21
From the " Exclusive ! " Sun article...

"The mum, who has not been identified "

Well quite, pick a Mum, any Mum will do in fact....although one related to, say, a lady named Yulia for example may just be relevant here.

Anyway, one of the last major scandals / revelations by said rag was that Test cricketers were taking bribes from bookies ....this as the Ashes series was about to begin.

Sadly, there was no, erm, proof of this and besides which, England didn't need to take any bribes to influence the outcome of the matches....they managed perfectly well by playing rubbish throughout.

ericsson16
15th Mar 2018, 08:20
Please explain what amazing skill did you generate, produce, design, make, fabricate to born in Russia or anywhere else for that matter.How on earth can be people be so proud of something that they have absolutely no control I have no clue.:ugh:

DroneDog
15th Mar 2018, 08:29
Something does not sit right here, if they need to dispatch someone there are more subtle ways. These are worth a read, it's a little long. The truth is out there....somewhere or...who to believe.

https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2018/03/russian-to-judgement/

https://medium.com/insurge-intelligence/the-british-governments-russia-nerve-agent-claims-are-bullshit-a69b4ee484ce

Jetex_Jim
15th Mar 2018, 08:40
Regardless of whether or not Putin's chaps were involved, the Salisbury incident and Theresa May's subsequent assertions have changed a few things.

Since the fall of the Soviet Union many here on JB and in the wider Conservative press were pro-Russian. With the Telegraph's line being, "they may not be a democracy but they are good capitalists."

Putin's activities in the Ukraine had JB apologists pronouncing on his behalf. And, when the first suggestions of Russian interference in Brexit and the Trump's election came to light these were largely ignored.

But now that has changed. You know it has when Nigel Farage has stopped his pro-Russian rhetoric and many on JB are finally chipping in with anti-Russian comments.

Of course there are a few confused souls who can't quite distinguish between Russia in 2018 and the Soviet Union but that's because the Salisbury incident has done what the Brexit vote tried to do - it's wound the clock back twenty years.

Andy_S
15th Mar 2018, 08:56
This is supposed to be a serious discussion thread on a very important subject.
Why don't you all take your personal fight out into the playground and leave this room clear, before someone comes along and locks the door?

It was supposed to be a light hearted dig at the prose style of one of our more colourful contributors.

But you are absolutely correct; the subject in question is rather too serious for levity. My apologies to K & C and anyone else who found my remarks inappropriate.

stagger
15th Mar 2018, 09:16
Something does not sit right here, if they need to dispatch someone there are more subtle ways.

Errr...that's the whole point. Unsubtle ways are used to send a message. But with just enough doubt to create division and chaos. E.g.

UK vs Eurozone
UK vs US
White House vs State Department
Conservative vs Labour
Labour vs Labour
PPRuNer vs PPRuNer

It's chaos for strategic effect (ok - maybe not the last one!)

As described here...

https://www.the-american-interest.com/2018/03/01/putins-strategy-chaos/

The Kremlin’s goal is to create an environment in which the side that copes best with chaos (that is, which is less susceptible to societal disruption) wins. The premise is Huntingtonian: that Russia can endure in a clash of civilizations by splintering its opponents’ alliances with each other, dividing them internally, and undermining their political systems while consolidating its own population, resources, and cultural base.

ShotOne
15th Mar 2018, 09:42
"..the side that copes best with chaos..". Vlad is at least doing us a favour in one respect; the fallout will show us who our real friends are. Already we've seen encouraging support from the murricans...while of course Mr Corbyn has fundamentally sided with the enemy.

ericsson16
15th Mar 2018, 09:49
Thousands of people were chanting "Oh Jeremy Corbyn" all over Glastonbury

Jetex_Jim
15th Mar 2018, 10:01
UK vs Eurozone
UK vs US
White House vs State Department
Conservative vs Labour
Labour vs Labour
PPRuNer vs PPRuNer

It's chaos for strategic effect (ok - maybe not the last one!)

As described here...

https://www.the-american-interest.co...trategy-chaos/


Excellent link. In the early phases of the Cold War, the Soviet Union again used Prometheanism against West European states—creating fifth columns and intentionally pitting discrete factions against one another. Weakening the West had a number of purposes: to prevent rearmament in Germany; to discredit pro-British and American leaders in Italy; to engender beneficial political chaos for local communist parties; and to win de facto recognition for Moscow’s consolidation of power in the eastern half of the Continent.

And in the present day the greatest Russian achievement has been Brexit and Putin sends his thanks to all those useful idiots who helped out with that one.

longer ron
15th Mar 2018, 10:03
Thousands of people were chanting "Oh Jeremy Corbyn" all over Glastonbury

Probably mostly young and naive - they probably view Corby as a harmless,honest and trustworthy 'grandad' figure - which of course is far from the truth :hmm:.
Corby,Mcdildo and the 'lovely' Ab Bott are probably the 3 most dangerous people in the uk.

sitigeltfel
15th Mar 2018, 10:46
Thousands of people were chanting "Oh Jeremy Corbyn" all over Glastonbury

The same mindset that had youths chanting "Seig Heil" at the Nuremberg rallies.

ericsson16
15th Mar 2018, 11:06
But Jeremy Wouldn't Even Harm a Fly!

15th Mar 2018, 11:23
So the niece - who lives near Moscow - suggests the the un-named possible mother in law, who may be in the Russian security service somewhere, has managed to access military grade nerve agent and an assassin to send to UK because she doesn't want the 'traitor's' daughter in her family???

I don't know what is more disappointing, the fact that the Sun printed it in the first place or that some here seem to give it any credibility at all!

Watch this week's Panorama by John Sweeney to see how good the Russians are at media manipulation and fabrication.

sitigeltfel
15th Mar 2018, 11:32
Horse.....stable door...

The UK is to build a new chemical weapons "defence centre" to protect itself from what it says is the growing threat from Russia and North Korea.http://http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-politics-43405686

Lonewolf_50
15th Mar 2018, 12:10
Thank you to ORAC and GF for the links. It's almost like Putin's gone full Hollywood cowboy/sheriff: wanted dead or alive. Quite frankly, what he's doing is somewhat like what I thought the war on terror would look like when it began in 2001: a war in the shadows and places with a lot of knife work in the dark. (Needless to say I guessed wrongly on that one.)

Jetex_Jim
15th Mar 2018, 12:41
https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2018/mar/15/russia-ripping-up-the-international-rule-book-says-defence-secretary

Gavin Williamson has urged Russia to “go away and shut up” when asked how the Kremlin should respond to the expulsion of 23 of its spies....
“Its cyber operations are active and brazen. It uses social media to muddy the waters and spread confusion. Last year, Russia’s military intelligence organisation directed the NotPetya ransomware activity, overwhelming systems in Ukraine from its power grid to its postal service, and causing hundreds of millions of pounds of damage to companies around the world, including here in the UK.”

Williamson, who was speaking at a Rolls-Royce facility, said: “But Russia is capable of much more. It is already increasingly using proxies to undermine sovereign states. Its involvement in the Ukraine conflict has cost thousands of lives.”

charliegolf
15th Mar 2018, 13:55
Watch this week's Panorama by John Sweeney to see how good the Russians are at media manipulation and fabrication.

They were just being friendly and attentive, Shirley Crab?:E

CG

VP959
15th Mar 2018, 14:17
Horse.....stable door...

http://http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-politics-43405686

It's not new. It was being planned before I retired in 2010, and was going to be built anyway. It's been delayed by around 2 to 3 years I believe, but that may well have been due to austerity. The basic work started on it a while ago.

It's a typical case of old news being regurgitated to try and make a current topical news story in order to spread a bit of political propaganda.

ericsson16
15th Mar 2018, 14:33
“As polite people, we’ll first be delivering our response to our British counterparts,” Lavrov said.

DroneDog
15th Mar 2018, 15:26
Want to send a message, video the guy being fed through a wood chipper.

This is theatre, there is zero evidence that the Russians were behind this. Considering events in Syria its almost as if someone is practising deception.

ehwatezedoing
15th Mar 2018, 15:35
there is zero evidence that the Russians were behind this.
Don't keep your head buried in the sand like that, it's not healthy :p

jindabyne
15th Mar 2018, 16:25
This is supposed to be a serious discussion thread

Cripes - for one moment I thought I was on Jet Blast. :ooh:

sitigeltfel
15th Mar 2018, 16:36
This has appeared on the pavement outside the Russian Embassy in London.

:E


https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DYV3_rYWkAArIF3.jpg

15th Mar 2018, 18:18
Dronedog - note your location is Europe - is that Eastern Europe by any chance?????

sitigeltfel
15th Mar 2018, 19:17
So, what next?

Vlad will expel UK diplomats. It will of course have to be more than the twenty three kicked out by May.
Other UK interests will be targeted including NGOs, news outlets and businesses.
"Spontaneous" demonstrations will occur at their premises.
Individuals will be attacked and harassed in the street.
Expect an increase in military probing flights towards the UK ADIZ.
Cyber attacks will be ramped up.
The useful idiots will be encouraged to flood the media in support of the Russian line.

Many of those tactics were used during the cold war and the manuals are being dusted off.

Chronus
15th Mar 2018, 20:15
Russia convicted of a crime with the only evidence below:

A toxin, possibly of Russian design in origin, but not yet as proven of Russian manufacture.
A victim who is certainly a former Russian spy catcher, turned traitor by our lot.

Motive :The Russia will not let old scores unsettled hypothesis.

Must have ocurred to the intelligencia that an act such as this is a very effective spanner in the works to stop the Russian rat extermination campaign in Syria.

Poetic justice in many ways, but now that our lot have pronounced sentence, and all in the public gallery are clapping and cheering, it really matters not who done it and for what reason. But given that the size of the stink bomb used, instead of the good old fashioned poison tipped spike boot that would do the same job neatly and without any sort of fuss, much favoured by spy novellists, clearly the aim must have been to cause a humongus stench guaranteed to drive everyone out of the room instantly.

Sallyann1234
15th Mar 2018, 21:38
A victim who is certainly a former Russian spy catcher, turned traitor by our lot.
And the other two victims?

flash8
15th Mar 2018, 22:04
No evidence supplied and we won't get any.

Just the "word" of the Government.. very convenient.

Asking people to wash their clothes nearly a week after the event ffs... who thought up that idea?

ericsson16
15th Mar 2018, 23:13
https://www.express.co.uk/news/world/932280/Vladimir-Putin-Russia-news-watch-Russian-borders-do-not-end-Crimea-video

Krystal n chips
16th Mar 2018, 06:05
This probably won't go down well (with some of the chaps on here ) but, when a former Ambassador comments to the effect, that, all may not be entirely as it seems then it's far from unreasonable to consider the pertinence of his opinion.

https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2018/mar/15/uks-claims-questioned-doubts-emerge-about-source-of-salisburys-novichok

In some respects, it's a bit like the Ruth Ellis case. On the surface she was guilty, however, the Met decided it was an "open and shut case" and did very little, if anything, to investigate the events in considerably more depth.

It's very simplistic therefore to promote the official Gov't stance for the benefit of the public, but far less simplistic to admit that despite the seemingly incontrovertible evidence in the public domain, behind the scenes there may well be doubts which are clearly never going to emerge in public. See Blair and WMD in this respect and yes, I was opposed to the excursions that resulted.

Cue the usual JB accusations ( in fact the last line of the link summaries JB perfectly in the case of some contributors ) as to " Kremlin / Russian / Putin " apologists for daring to question officialdom. If, and when, the proof is made public, then fine.

However, before that happens then asking such questions is perfectly reasonable purely, as the police say, "to eliminate them from our enquiries" .

Anyway, most will be engaged in rapturous celebrations when reading the Mail's jolly spiffing headlines .......

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/blogs-the-papers-43424863

flash8
16th Mar 2018, 07:10
Murray says “Anyone who expresses scepticism is seen as an enemy of the state.”

I worked in Pathogen storage in the CIS countries, probably one of the few people in the UK to do so, based on a non-UK government contract to maintain Pathogen security via tracking.

Also know Craig Murray (former UZ Ambassador) as we used to both drink in the same bar in Tashkent below the Ragu on Osiyo Str... he left long ago... but I am still around these parts.

I pretty much agree with what he says.

The UK is currently run by a bunch of clowns, or perhaps more disturbingly ones that think they know what they are doing.

VP959
16th Mar 2018, 07:56
No evidence supplied and we won't get any.

Just the "word" of the Government.. very convenient.

Asking people to wash their clothes nearly a week after the event ffs... who thought up that idea?

A sample of the specific agent recovered from the scene has been sent to be independently analysed, for those that don't trust my former colleagues to do a good job, so it won't be just the word of the UK government at all. I strongly suspect that a sample may well have already been sent to Fort Detrick anyway, given the very close cooperation between the US and UK in this area.

The agent may well not be registered as a nerve agent in the CWC or by the OPCW - one of the goals of the novichok programme was to create hard to detect agents that fell outwith the definitions of the CWC and not all of the novichok agents were defined as chemical weapons. Pinning the specific agent down took time, and confirming beyond doubt which of the 80 to 100 different novichok agents took longer - remember, this stuff was specifically designed by Russia back in the Soviet era to be hard to identify.

The warnings to wash away any possible slight trace on clothing etc that someone might possibly have picked up in one of the two public areas where it has been found was only made after the agent had been identified and traces had been found in those areas, the only time when a proper risk assessment could be done.

Had this agent been one of the well-known agents, say Sarin, Tabun, Soman, or one of the V agents, like VG or VX, the the task of identifying it would have been a great deal easier and quicker, as would any warnings issued to the public.

The destruction of the known chemical weapons stockpiles in Russia only applies to the known agents that were listed under the CWC, not the unknown ones. Many (probably most) of the novichok agents weren't known to be held, so were effectively outwith any destruction agreement. It's highly likely that the precursors were also outwith any destruction agreement too, and almost a certainty that some were kept.

I think we also need to look at where other states acquired the expertise and facilities to create more commonly known agents. For example, who provided the agents to Iraq? No evidence was found that Iraq had an advanced chemical weapons programme, or the facilities to manufacture them, package them and deploy them, yet we know they use chemical agents against the Kurds. Much the same applied to Syria - where did they acquire the expertise to make and effectively deploy agents?

Whilst much of the evidence is circumstantial, the volume of it points to one nation state, and not to any other.

Who had a motive for wishing to attempt to kill a Russian who had been a former UK spy? Only really someone from Russia.

Who created the unusual and rare agent used? Russia.

Who has a long track record of extrajudicial murders of it's own former citizens on foreign soil? Russia.

Which state has a track record of carrying out such murders in way intended to send a clear message that traitors will be die a dreadful death and has said that it will hunt down and kill every traitor? Russia.

Who has almost certainly aided and abetted other nations who have both deployed chemical weapons in recent years? Russia.

I can't think of any other state that would have anything to gain by doing this. The idea of some sort of false flag operation doesn't make sense - there is already a mountain of evidence that shows that Russia considers acts like this to be not only lawful, but something it intends to carry out. There's no point at all in another state just adding one more to the list, and putting innocent civilians at risk in the process.

As Vladimir Putin said yesterday, "Russia has no borders", which I think sums up well how he believes that he and his state have an absolute right to do as they wish, anywhere in the world.

flash8
16th Mar 2018, 08:11
Whilst much of the evidence is circumstantial

I suspect all of it is, this plays into a domestic agenda and a narrative has been spun.

As for tracing back to a country... this purely nonsensical... any decent organic chemistry lab could synthesise organophosphorus compounds.

Problem is most people with an opinion don't know what they are talking about, have had no experience of pathogen security in developing countries and go along with the misguided herd.

And that isn't me I'm afraid.

sitigeltfel
16th Mar 2018, 08:11
No evidence supplied and we won't get any.

Just the "word" of the Government.. very convenient.

Oh, c'mon komrade, you're not that naive, are you? That's not how security and intelligence works.

Withholding some info and disclosing other snippets is all part of the game, designed to confuse and flush out your adversary.
You don't want to let the other side build on their strengths and weaknesses by giving them access to everything you have on record, do you?

Well, maybe you are that naive, or possibly like some others here, working to an agenda?

DaveReidUK
16th Mar 2018, 08:27
Interesting piece on the BBC World Service this morning (didn't catch the interviewee's name) suggesting that "the Russian State" is an increasingly woolly concept and that Putin is increasingly being manipulated by a shadowy alliance of the intelligence services and organised crime.

Not that that will come as a surprise to anyone who has read Misha Glenny's book.

VP959
16th Mar 2018, 08:29
I suspect all of it is, this plays into a domestic agenda and a narrative has been spun.

As for tracing back to a country... this purely nonsensical... any decent organic chemistry lab could synthesise organophosphorus compounds.

Problem is most people with an opinion don't know what they are talking about, have had no experience of pathogen security in developing countries and go along with the misguided herd.

The idea that "any decent organic chemistry lab could synthesise organophosphorous compounds" is true, but ignores the extraordinary toxicity of these particular agents. A cat 3 containment facility would be needed, and although there are a lot of those around in big pharmaceutical companies, university labs etc, they are bloody expensive to build and operate, and not something that anyone could do in their shed.

The risks to the people doing the work are massive, and they would not only have to know how to synthesise the compound involved, they would also need easy and untraceable access to the precursor compounds, the knowledge and handling skills to work within a containment environment, the knowledge to design, develop and test a deployment system and the means to dispense the compound safely to the delivery system, and be certain that the delivery system posed little risk to anyone other than the intended target whilst being transported and finally operated.

As for assuming that some of us here have no experience of what goes on in developing countries, I think that's probably a bit off the mark, given the membership of this forum! Extensive searches of Iraq failed to show that even a relatively well-developed country had developed an effective chemical weapons programme, let alone one sophisticated enough to have been able to independently come up with an agent that happens to be identical to one of the Russian novichok range, so what's the probability that someone else, say IS, could do this? So close to zero as to to be almost beyond the bounds of the imagination, in my view.

Apart from anything else, very few people outside Russia have the faintest idea of the composition of all the novichok agents, and we only know of them because defectors told us about them. Neither the UK nor the US would have released that information, which implies that any other state involved had some form of Russian assistance.

sitigeltfel
16th Mar 2018, 08:34
Putin is increasingly being manipulated by a shadowy alliance of the intelligence services and organised crime.

Given his very close contacts with the cabal of corrupt oligarchs, there is every likelihood that he is the Capo di tutti Capi.

DroneDog
16th Mar 2018, 08:34
Dronedog - note your location is Europe - is that Eastern Europe by any chance?????

Comrade Crab, you made me spill my vodka over my cornflakes. You are correct I am from eastern Europe, the people's Soviet Republic of N Ireland.

Although work takes me around the world but mainly in Europe.

One question - Why? Why would the Russians do this?

Its always been about the money, things are good at the moment in Russia, they are shifting tonnes of gas to Europe, high-class hookers are plentiful and the orders for the next £200,000 Mercs and superyachts are in, why rock the boat.
And for what, a washed up non-entity who has already done prison time in Russia and is now merely a drain of the UK's purse.

No comrade, this has Syria written all over it, it is pure theatre and it is becoming a parody. Yesterday the Daily Mail reported police are looking for two Russians seen in the area at the time, what were they dressed like Cossacks, as no doubt we will now find syringes with "made in the USSR" stamped on them to add more evidence.
And them means of the attack, why? If they really wanted him dead there are much easier ways, less risky for the assailants and much less likely to piss off the general public.

This game has been played many times before, Gulf of Tonkin, Lybia, Afghanistan, Iraq, weapons of mass destruction and on and on....

Somebody is pissed that Russia is not giving up on Syria and the deception has begun.
On a side note, there is a nice comedy show on C4 called Action Team, this entire event would slot into an episode.

cavortingcheetah
16th Mar 2018, 08:47
Jeremy Corbyn's exoneration of Russia in the Case of the Poisoned Politico proves conclusively that the man is an uncompromising Marxist who puts the interests of foreign powers hostile to Britain ahead of those of his own country. It would be a delicious irony to see him elected as Prime Minister with Seamus Milne as his Goebbelesque alter ego and McDonnell as his Bryukhanov.

flash8
16th Mar 2018, 08:49
The idea that "any decent organic chemistry lab could synthesise organophosphorous compounds" is true, but ignores the extraordinary toxicity of these particular agents.

It's a fair point VP and I don't disagree... it certainly is likely the work of a state actor, my only concern is we find and punish the correct one!

Could it have been Russia? Indeed, but what disturbs me a little is that I genuinely don't see why they would do this, people like Putin and Lavrov are cold, hard and rational and play a very long game, they don't make mistakes often, and this one would be a pretty bad one.

ORAC
16th Mar 2018, 08:54
https://www.thetimes.co.uk/imageserver/image/methode%2Ftimes%2Fprod%2Fweb%2Fbin%2F5aae0a5a-288f-11e8-acc5-262aff1ca7a6.png?crop=2711%2C1807%2C605%2C195&resize=1370

flash8
16th Mar 2018, 09:03
Go away and shut up, defence secretary tells the Russians... (from the BBC)

I have to admit being deeply impressed by the gravitas and articulation of the defence secretary... coupled with Boris those two statesman will no doubt sort things right :ok:

Curious Pax
16th Mar 2018, 09:07
Jeremy Corbyn's exoneration of Russia in the Case of the Poisoned Politico proves conclusively that the man is an uncompromising Marxist who puts the interests of foreign powers hostile to Britain ahead of those of his own country. It would be a delicious irony to see him elected as Prime Minister with Seamus Milne as his Goebbelesque alter ego and McDonnell as his Bryukhanov.

Corbyn has exonerated no one. He has supported the diplomat expulsion, and echoes the points several here have made that going after dodgy Russian money would be a far more effective tool. His point is that we seem to have learned nothing from recent history. A headlong rush to judgement can leave one looking stupid further down the line.

It’s somewhat ironic (hypocritical is probably a better word) that most demanding blind support of the government’s position, and calling any dissenters traitors etc, are the same people who endlessly bang on about Blair and the dodgy dossier.

Have we heard directly from any UK chemical weapons scientists on the toxin used? If so I must have missed it. We have however seen approval of a big budget increase for Porton Down. Interesting juxtaposition wouldn’t you say?

DroneDog
16th Mar 2018, 09:20
I have to admit being deeply impressed by the gravitas and articulation of the defence secretary... coupled with Boris those two statesman will no doubt sort things right :ok:

Very statesman like, this will be a fantastic comedy film in yrs to come.

Andy_S
16th Mar 2018, 09:40
.......people like Putin and Lavrov are cold, hard and rational......

And yet they continue to provoke and test the patience of the west at every opportunity and seem to take a great delight in doing so.

......and play a very long game.......

But isn’t that exactly what they’re playing in this case?

Skripal, in himself, is irrelevant. It’s the message that his attempted murder sends out to any other would be Russian “traitors” that is significant.

KelvinD
16th Mar 2018, 09:45
going after dodgy Russian money would be a far more effective tool.
Isn't it the case that while Labour have been pushing for Magnitsky type legislation, the Tories have refused it?
It is an odd world when compared to politics in my youth. Then, it was quite straightforward:
Labour=Pro Russia
Conservative= Anti Russia
Given the behaviour of William Hague and Theresa May in regard to the Litvinenko inquiry (withholding info from the coroner) and Labour's attempts to apply financial penalties to Russians, it is obvious the old order has been reversed.

VP959
16th Mar 2018, 09:47
Have we heard directly from any UK chemical weapons scientists on the toxin used? If so I must have missed it.

No, and you won't. Their identities are kept pretty secret unless they are involved in international inspections work. There are very good reasons for this, primarily associated with their personal safety.

We have however seen approval of a big budget increase for Porton Down. Interesting juxtaposition wouldn’t you say?

Not quite true. The planning for that new lab was well underway when I retired over 6 years ago, and there's no "new" money here, just confirmation that a long planned upgrade to 20+ year old facilities is going ahead, as it was anyway. Making a timely public announcement like this is just a good bit of government spin, nothing more.

DroneDog
16th Mar 2018, 09:49
But he is worthless, none of Putin's mates doing a roaring trade with the West will sanction this, In fact, I doubt if this guy was even on anybody's radar

This is theatre, staged and managed by someone else.

flash8
16th Mar 2018, 09:51
......and play a very long game.......
But isn’t that exactly what they’re playing in this case?

Skripal, in himself, is irrelevant. It’s the message that his attempted murder sends out to any other would be Russian “traitors” that is significant.

Yes, but this only strengthens May's hand in domestic politics, as they would have been well aware, they could have left it a few years awaiting the arrival of Monsieur Corbyn, likely a more sympathetic ally (not disparaging Corbyn here but he would likely be an ideal PM for the Kremlin as many gleefully like to state). Why rock the boat now?

No, timing is everything, and this was timed to strengthen May, given her utterly disastrous poll ratings (behind) and could only get worse with Brexit.

That she didn't do a Hezza and turn up in Salisbury in a Flak Jacket was only mildly surprising.


Oh well.

Fitter2
16th Mar 2018, 10:00
No, timing is everything, and this was timed to strengthen May, given her utterly disastrous poll ratings (behind) and could only get worse with Brexit.

And the moon landings were filmed on a Hollywood sound stage, and the World Trade Centre was blown up be the CIA/FBI, with laser projected airliners for camouflage. I hear tinfoil hats are all the rage this year.

Sallyann1234
16th Mar 2018, 10:01
Did you pack your suitcase yourself?

The Daily Telegraph reckons that police suspect the daughter brought the offending substance with her from Russia.
It would certainly have been easier to insert the stuff into a gift item in a Russian lab, than to prepare and apply it to the victims in Salisbury.

flash8
16th Mar 2018, 10:02
It would certainly have been easier to insert the stuff into a gift item in a Russian lab, than to prepare and apply it in Salisbury.

And certainly easier not to have any local suspects!

Stan Woolley
16th Mar 2018, 10:09
Try reading something other than state propaganda.

https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/

DroneDog
16th Mar 2018, 10:13
Try reading something other than state propaganda.

https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/

Yes...that is starting to make sense.

Andy_S
16th Mar 2018, 10:15
.....May, given her utterly disastrous poll ratings.

Have you seen the latest polls? Tories and Labour level pegging, and a number of recent polls have had the Tories ahead.

Are you seriously suggesting that this whole incident was planned and executed for the benefit of the Conservative Government.

flash8
16th Mar 2018, 10:20
Are you seriously suggesting that this whole incident was planned and executed for the benefit of the Conservative Government.

No, but they have undoubtedly benefited, looks like Craig Murray is digging into the real situation... we all want the truth eh?

currawong
16th Mar 2018, 10:23
I could not find the answer to this using a logic flow diagram.

Nor Occams Razor.

So I came to Jet Blast and am none the wiser. :(

VP959 thankyou for your informed contribution.

I do wonder though if you are confusing organophosphates with organochlorines.

Krystal n chips
16th Mar 2018, 10:28
Try reading something other than state propaganda.

https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/

That link is very interesting, in more ways than one, so thank you for providing it.

Jetex_Jim
16th Mar 2018, 10:42
https://twitter.com/haveigotnews/status/974287307049259009

VP959
16th Mar 2018, 10:48
Try reading something other than state propaganda.

https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/

The man seems to be confused about the role of any scientist versus the role of a police officer, security service officer, court of law, or a politician, which given his background seems surprising. I rather suspect he's deliberately conflating these roles for his own personal reasons.

Let's deal with the role of a scientist, as that's something I'm familiar with. No scientist is ever going to state the origin of any compound they are asked to analyse. The simple reason is that there cannot be positive evidence of origin from the composition of the compound itself. All any scientist can do is present the results of their analysis and provide comparisons with other compounds they have analysed, or have the analysis signatures for.

In this case the analysis was performed and the compound was identified as having a signature that was the same as one of the many novichok agents. We, and the US, have those signatures thanks to Soviet era defectors. The investigators and politicians have taken that information and presented it, and it was their choice as to how to do that. Worth noting that even Jeremy Corbyn has agreed that the agent used was most probably of Russian origin - he's a Privy Councillor and will know the facts known by the investigation so far.

Very few states know those detailed signatures, as they still have military value. I suspect it may well be that only the US, UK and some people in Russia have them, but it's always possible that they were leaked to other countries during the break up of the former Soviet Union. The main argument against the latter is that we've not seen them used by countries that have, or are, receiving assistance from Russia, those countries have only deployed well-known agents, like Sarin.

No one knows how far the police and security services investigation has gone, all we know for sure is that the agent used has been positively identified and that traces of it have been found in at least two locations.

DaveReidUK
16th Mar 2018, 10:53
Given his very close contacts with the cabal of corrupt oligarchs, there is every likelihood that he is the Capo di tutti Capi.

Given his very close contacts with the cabal of corrupt oligarchs, it's equally possible that he is increasingly at their beck and call.

sitigeltfel
16th Mar 2018, 10:55
https://twitter.com/haveigotnews/status/974287307049259009

I hope he's not expecting a seat on that train?

;)

longer ron
16th Mar 2018, 11:00
No, but they have undoubtedly benefited, looks like Craig Murray is digging into the real situation... we all want the truth eh?

I doubt many people will take much notice of anything that he writes LOL - he is a dipstick :)

VP959
16th Mar 2018, 11:01
I do wonder though if you are confusing organophosphates with organochlorines.

All the well-known nerve agents are organophosphate based. I'm not aware of any specific organochloride compound that has been used as a nerve agent, although some are persistent and very toxic they have a very different effect on the body.

This agent was not a blistering agent (i.e. an organochlorine like Lewisite, sulphur mustard etc), and that is a pretty quick and easy determination to make, as the CAM (the chemical agent monitors that were seen being used on the day of the attack around the area) has two modes, one for detecting blistering agents (organochlorides), the other for detecting and identifying nerve agents (usually organophosphates).

Because of the delay in identifying the actual agent used, we can be confident that it is what it has been declared to be, one of the 80 to 100 novichok nerve agents. I have doubts as to whether the actual agent used will be made public, though, mainly because there is probably some political mileage in keeping that under wraps.

mini
16th Mar 2018, 15:09
corbyn50plus/status/974011990254538754

Won't seem to post the full link...

:hmm:

NutLoose
16th Mar 2018, 15:11
https://www.msn.com/en-gb/news/uknews/new-zealand-puts-russia-trade-plans-on-hold-after-nerve-agent-attack/ar-BBKhO3k

mini
16th Mar 2018, 15:12
https://twitter.com/corbyn50plus/status/974011990254538754

VP959
16th Mar 2018, 15:38
https://twitter.com/corbyn50plus/status/974011990254538754


I hate bad reporting, and the key phrase in this misused quote is this:

Information on these compounds has been sparse in the public domain

Robin was writing in an unclassified journal, what else did anyone expect! No one is going to release classified information, or hint that it may exist, in such a publication, to do so would be like publishing what goes on in a certain building number at the establishment where he worked.

Yes, there is, and has been, a lot of speculation about what these agents were, how effective they were and how far the programme that was developing them had got, but there is some hard evidence of their existence, in several forms, and not all from one single former Soviet defector, either.

The reason for the OPCW not including them is that they simply didn't have enough information to positively identify or classify some of them, not because they didn't exist, or were the figment of someone with an over-active imagination.

There's a similarity here with the speculation surrounding the NK weapons programme. No one knows for sure what NK have been up to, or how capable their weapons may be, because just like the former Soviet Union they are completely isolated from any form of technical information exchange, so we have to estimate how technically competent they may be, and weigh that against the propaganda.

The existence of the novichok programme is fairly well established. The nature of some of the agents produced by it are reasonably well understood, but the nature of the majority of the agents they produced, or investigated for use, is not so well known, and has never been in the public domain, AFAIK. This supports Robin's view in that paper, and it's worth noting that the paper in question was a very broad over view of the history of chemical agents, and was not intended to be a focussed technical paper on any specific class of agent at all. Here's the abstract of that paper to put it into context:

Development, Historical Use and Properties of Chemical Warfare Agents

Robin Black

An overview is provided of the development, historical use and properties of chemical warfare agents from 1914 until the present. The advent of large scale tactical and strategic chemical warfare occurred almost one year into World War I. More than 30 agents were used, the most effective being phosgene and sulfur mustard. Although large stockpiles existed, chemical weapons were not used in Europe in World War II. An important milestone during that conflict was the development of the volatile nerve agents, tabun, sarin and soman, and in the post-war period the development of the low volatility V-type nerve agents. Sarin, soman, VX and RVX became the major components of modern arsenals together with the vesicants sulfur mustard and lewisite. Nerve agents and/or sulfur mustard were used in three more recent conflicts in Iraq and Syria. Other milestones have been the dissemination of sarin by terrorists in Japan in 1994 and 1995, the use of an incapacitant to end the siege of a Moscow theatre in 2002, and the entry into force in 1997 of the Chemical Weapons Convention.

ORAC
16th Mar 2018, 16:29
Case of Nikolai Glushkov in London has been upgraded to murder. Post mortem result shows he had dies from “compression to the neck” - i.e. strangled by one means or another.

Well, as Russian TV, the Russian embassy twitter feed and other Russian official sources have gloated - sorry reflected - London is a terribly dangerous place for Russian emigres.

No doubt another tragic coincidence......

Stan Woolley
16th Mar 2018, 16:37
Robin was writing in an unclassified journal, what else did anyone expect! No one is going to release classified information, or hint that it may exist, in such a publication, to do so would be like publishing what goes on in a certain building number at the establishment where he worked.

If no-one is permitted to tell anything useful about such information, ‘Robin’ included, then there’s not much point in any of us speculating further on events at Porton Down.

If you are able could would you mind answering this question?

Are you still currently in touch with scientists working there?

I could give you my impressions of working as a TRE at Ryanair before my career was prematurely ended in 2011, but I know that it may be very different working environment now. Also, I would only be able to give one valid view, other TREs that worked there at the same time might have very different opinions. I wouldn’t bet on knowing anything that I wasn’t meant to know. Outside my need to know.

Surely in an environment like PD, secrecy is paramount? Loose talk and all that!

So while it’s interesting that you used to work there, the info that you’re allowed to talk about, won’t be that important. Would that be a valid comment?

VP959
16th Mar 2018, 16:49
If no-one is permitted to tell anything useful about such information, ‘Robin’ included, then there’s not much point in any of us speculating further on events at Porton Down.




I cannot answer your questions, but can confirm, as it is in the public domain, that the agents exist. This Wikipedia entry contains one or two assumptions and is not wholly accurate, but the key facts regarding the admission by the former Soviet Union that the novichok programme existed, when given in evidence against one of the defectors, is correct and independently verifiable: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Novichok_agent

I'd not trust everything in that Wikipedia article, as it seems to be being edited often and there are certainly one or two errors and omissions in it, but the data with sound references is reasonably accurate.

Krystal n chips
16th Mar 2018, 18:15
Yo !

Like she's one real cool dude ! awesome man, awesome !

Russian spy: Theresa May in Salisbury fist bump - BBC News (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/av/uk-43416368/russian-spy-theresa-may-in-salisbury-fist-bump)

Coming next...high fives with Boris and Vlad !

Back to the serious albeit somewhat confusing analysis producing more questions than answers.

Effluent Man
16th Mar 2018, 18:17
Quite clearly hoping that some of that Williamson gravitas will rub off!

ShotOne
16th Mar 2018, 18:34
“..they have undoubtedly benefited..” So you’re really suggesting the UK government has been nerve-gassing people in Salisbury to boost their popularity??

Lonewolf_50
16th Mar 2018, 18:44
@ShotOne:
That's what conspiracy theorists, Russian trolls, and useful idiots do. The MO is well established, the grooves in the road well worn: like the cart/chariot tracks in Pompeii's streets.


The back of my brain keeps asking me "was this a mob hit of some sort?" because that's not beyond the realm of the possible.

Cpt_Pugwash
16th Mar 2018, 19:33
Just watched the Russian Ambassador being interviewed by CH4 and claiming that there was no evidence that the Skripals had suffered any injury.

Channelling Comical Ali maybe!

Effluent Man
16th Mar 2018, 19:37
“..they have undoubtedly benefited..” So you’re really suggesting the UK government has been nerve-gassing people in Salisbury to boost their popularity??

That would be quite fanciful, but not much more so IMO than the Putin scenario. The Russians have obviously been lax, someone on the wireless last night was saying that the production facility was behind wooden gates. It's just vastly different values in terms of security where we would have armed guards and razor wire in place. Has all the signs of a c**k up in a semi failed state.

Chronus
16th Mar 2018, 19:40
And the other two victims?

Collateral.

Buster15
16th Mar 2018, 19:49
I sincerely hope that Boris can back up his claim that Putin is most likely to have been involved in the nerve agent attack on Mr Skripal and his daughter.
Time for cool heads and not letting ones mouth get in the way of the evidence.

Effluent Man
16th Mar 2018, 20:40
I sincerely hope that Boris can back up his claim that Putin is most likely to have been involved in the nerve agent attack on Mr Skripal and his daughter.
Time for cool heads and not letting ones mouth get in the way of the evidence.

Surely the most worrying aspect of this is the rush to make allegations that it is impossible to back up. Just imagine the effect this is likely to have on relations with Russia if Putin hasn't done it.

VP959
16th Mar 2018, 20:53
Surely the most worrying aspect of this is the rush to make allegations that it is impossible to back up. Just imagine the effect this is likely to have on relations with Russia if Putin hasn't done it.

Absolute rulers have to accept responsibility for the actions of their state, whether or not they were directly responsible for those actions.

There is no question in my mind that the resources, facilities and expertise needed to carry out this attack originated from what is now the Russian state, as there is no other credible explanation as to how the materiel was obtained, prepared, tested, transported and delivered to Russian targets.

It may well have been a rogue attack by Russian security service agents, but that in no way absolves the leader of the state from responsibility. The buck stops on his desk, irrespective as to whether he personally authorised it or not.

Let's not forget that Putin declared "open season" on extrajudicial murders on foreign soil by passing a law specifically allowing it, and has followed that up with statements that all traitors to Russia should expect to be killed. That's tantamount to giving a "licence to kill" to any Russian citizen who feels he can get away with it, with or without direct state sponsorship.

VP959
16th Mar 2018, 22:15
The agent has been positively confirmed by the BBC as novichok A234, not an agent I'm familiar with, but now it's in the public domain there should be no real trouble in finding out what it is. All that has been released is that the agent is slow acting. That implies that it may well be one of the novichok agents that are very closely related to organophosphate pesticides (which are also fairly slow acting).

No doubt more information will be forthcoming, but we can now be fairly confident that this agent was from Russia, and as it was used against a former Russian citizen I think there is very little doubt that the perpetrator(s) were also Russian, or hired by Russians. Even the Russian ambassador seems to have accepted that the agent used was novichok A234.

WingNut60
16th Mar 2018, 22:43
The agent has been positively confirmed by the BBC ......

Their range of talents is truly impressive then.

currawong
17th Mar 2018, 00:53
Thanks VP959.

I meant to add as opposed to a carbamate.

Things more readily available, if you catch my drift.

Although that now seems to have been put to bed.

cavortingcheetah
17th Mar 2018, 06:07
https://cdn.images.express.co.uk/img/dynamic/1/590x/secondary/BBC-Newsnight-BBC-Newsnight-Jeremy-Corbyn-BBC-Newsnight-Labour-BBC-Newsnight-Salisbury-BBC-Newsnight-Russia-BBC-Newsnight-1271991.jpg

ehwatezedoing
17th Mar 2018, 06:44
Collateral.
How inconsiderate from the Russian.
If you want to murder an enemy of your nation sheltering in another one, do it like any civilized country would do.

Use a drone, missile and...Forget about bystanders :p

Krystal n chips
17th Mar 2018, 07:11
In the minds of some on here, the Guardian's content is directly controlled by the Kremlin.

For the more rational and pragmatic therefore, this article is worth a read.

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/mar/16/putin-lies-action-moscow-salisbury-attack

I do, though, commend the summary in the last paragraph.

Fervent advocates of the trio mentioned may take umbrage.....hopefully.

KelvinD
17th Mar 2018, 08:10
Just like everybody else, I really don't know who attacked Skripal and "frankly, my dear I don't give a damn". What does concern and puzzle me over the whole affair is course taken by the government.
Theresa May, as Home Secretary, in concert with William Hague, really dug her heels in to thwart an investigation into Litvinenko's death. The widow of Litvinenko had to resort to crowd funding in order to go to court to overturn the Home Office's action.
In this case, Mrs May went direct to the "highly likely" verdict in a very short time.
She then went on to expel Russian spies. Surely the accepted procedure would have seen her call in the Russian ambassador for a chat, before announcing any diplomatic actions? (I note the Russian government has this morning done just that with the UK ambassador).
Yvette Cooper has, for some time, been urging the government and the Met Police to re-investigate the deaths in UK of 14 Russians and has been ignored by the Met Police and rebuffed by the Home Office. Suddenly, the Home Office have acceded to Yvette Cooper's requests and will re-open some or all of those investigations.
So, I am confused by this dramatic U-turn in the attitude of the Conservative party toward the Russian government.
Who is yanking May's chain?
I don't like Corbyn as leader of the Labour party but I have to say he had a point when he questioned this rush to judgement (and execution) without any form of inquiry, evidence etc. I am guessing that those Labour party politicians who backed May's actions were probably doing so merely to increase Corbyn's discomfort.

ShotOne
17th Mar 2018, 08:25
Any discomfort on Corbyn’s part is 100% self-inflicted. When given a choice between “his” country and any loathsome despot (preferably but not necessarily left-wing) Vlad, Hugo, Fidel or Josef will win every time.

The fact that previously we’ve been slow to point the finger at Russia only emphasises the nonsensity of the line that this is some bonkers provocation.

wiggy
17th Mar 2018, 08:38
Since the unfortunate Mr Litvinenko has been mentioned, and of course with the rider that “well it’s the Guardian......”

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/jan/21/widow-alexander-litvinenko-calls-for-further-sanctions-russia

VP959
17th Mar 2018, 08:45
Just like everybody else, I really don't know who attacked Skripal and "frankly, my dear I don't give a damn". What does concern and puzzle me over the whole affair is course taken by the government.
Theresa May, as Home Secretary, in concert with William Hague, really dug her heels in to thwart an investigation into Litvinenko's death. The widow of Litvinenko had to resort to crowd funding in order to go to court to overturn the Home Office's action.
In this case, Mrs May went direct to the "highly likely" verdict in a very short time.
She then went on to expel Russian spies. Surely the accepted procedure would have seen her call in the Russian ambassador for a chat, before announcing any diplomatic actions? (I note the Russian government has this morning done just that with the UK ambassador).
Yvette Cooper has, for some time, been urging the government and the Met Police to re-investigate the deaths in UK of 14 Russians and has been ignored by the Met Police and rebuffed by the Home Office. Suddenly, the Home Office have acceded to Yvette Cooper's requests and will re-open some or all of those investigations.
So, I am confused by this dramatic U-turn in the attitude of the Conservative party toward the Russian government.
Who is yanking May's chain?
I don't like Corbyn as leader of the Labour party but I have to say he had a point when he questioned this rush to judgement (and execution) without any form of inquiry, evidence etc. I am guessing that those Labour party politicians who backed May's actions were probably doing so merely to increase Corbyn's discomfort.



May wasn't Home Secretary at the time of Litvinenko's death in 2006, she didn't take up that post until 4 years later, by which time the previous government had decided not to to take action. Litvinenko's widow started a campaign that culminated in the granting of an inquest in November 2011. The delays in the inquest were due to the availability of examinable evidence, and arguably that was really down to the FCO, rather than the Home Office, I think, as I suspect much of it related to difficulties with extradition requests.

May seemed to have little to do with most of the decisions relating to the investigation of the death of Litvinenko, as far as I can tell the only influence she had was she opposed an enquiry until she announced it in July 2014, but all the shots were being called by the FCO and the SIS, who simply did not want an open enquiry that might reveal information they had about Russian activity. She doesn't seem to have had much influence, from what I can see, and was just a mouthpiece for actions that seem to have been driven by a desire to hold what amounted to a secret internal inquiry/inquest, something that many, including Litvinenko's widow, were opposed to.

I can't stand May, as it happens, so this isn't a defence of her at all, but in all honesty I believe that, no matter her personal views, she was being driven by the combined efforts of the FCO and the security services in resisting a full public enquiry. If anything, I believe it was these department/agencies that were "yanking her chain" back then.

KelvinD
17th Mar 2018, 09:17
I never said May was Home Secretary at the time of Litvinenko's death. She was definitely Home Secretary when Marina Litvinenko attempted to push things along. And William Hague was the Foreign Secretary who persuaded a coroner to accept a Public Interest Immunity Certificate in order to suppress a lot of information during the Litvinenko inquest.
Your comment re May's chain being yanked by various departments is well made and was perhaps at the back of my mind when musing over what is going on.

sitigeltfel
17th Mar 2018, 11:26
Strange coincidence that all those who know with 100% certainty that the Russkies were heavily involved in the Trump election, are adamant that they had nothing whatsoever to do with the Salisbury incident! Anyone would think there is some sort of agenda?

The rebuttals will be amusing.

jindabyne
17th Mar 2018, 11:30
Buster 15 ----

I sincerely hope that Boris can back up his claim that Putin is most likely to have been involved in the nerve agent attack on Mr Skripal and his daughter. Time for cool heads and not letting ones mouth get in the way of the evidence.

I agree. His words were " overwhelmingly likely that it was his (Putin's) decision to direct the use of a nerve agent on the streets of London (and Europe) since the second world war".

May and her Ministers' repeated 'highly likely' assertions fall short of an accusation of guilt; which, to me, makes her actions thus far somewhat worryingly pre-emptive. Unless of course we're intentionally not being fed the truth.

And perhaps Johnson could tell us more about the use of nerve agents on the streets of London during WW2?? Or am I remiss?

Whilst I loathe Corbyn and his front bench, I'm increasingly dismayed (no pun) about the quality and performance of some senior members of HMG; especially the fool that is Foreign Secretary, and his apparently naive and childlike Defence colleague.

Effluent Man
17th Mar 2018, 11:49
Overwhelmingly likely..sounds rather like "on the balance of probabilities". But not perhaps beyond reasonable doubt. So the guilt of the Putin government lies somewhere in the no man's land between the proof required fir a civil claim and a criminal conviction.

I have no doubt that, given a neutral jury, the current evidence would fall short of that required to secure a conviction in a court of law. That being the case I do think it premature to carry out the sentence when there is still a realistic possibility that it wasn't Vlad.

VP959
17th Mar 2018, 12:11
Look at the circumstantial evidence we have:

1. The target was a Russian, considered to be a traitor by Russia.

2. Russian law allows the extrajudicial assassination of enemies of the state anywhere in the world.

3. The agent used is uniquely Russian in origin, and has never, AFAIK, been manufactured or tested outside Russia.

4. There is a track record of Russian dissidents, traitors or enemies of the Russian state being murdered outside Russia.

5. We are pretty certain that Alexander Litvinenko was murdered by a man who is now a member of the Russian Duma, and who was effectively promoted into a parliamentary role partly in order to give him greater immunity. He has publicly stated "If someone has caused the Russian state serious damage, they should be exterminated". For this to happen the President must have had some involvement.

6. The Russian President publicly said, two days ago, that "Russia has no borders", implying that it could act anywhere in the world.

7. The Russian President has previously openly lied, on several occasions. Take, for example, the annexation of Crimea. He denounced the reports by journalists saying they had seen Russian troops in Crimea, saying that anyone could be wearing Russian uniforms as a deception. Once Crimea was annexed he openly praised the Russian troops that had taken action there.

It's true that none of the above is a true "smoking gun", but it's pretty compelling circumstantial evidence, never the less.

The alternative is to flip this question around, and try to determine which other state would have had the motive, and means, to carry out this attack. The idea that it's a "false flag" operation falls over because there is nothing to be gained by the two states that might possibly have the capability to undertake such an attack, the UK and the US. This will harm both the UK and US, without a doubt, and that's without considering the stupidity of using a bloody dangerous nerve agent in a public area, when anyone could have been affected by it, not just the target(s).

Could it be a terrorist incident? Well, if so, then why have none of the usual suspects come forward to claim credit for it? I also doubt that any of the radical groups have even 1% of the technical capability and access to facilities to prepare this agent into a deliverable system.

Who does that leave as possible perpetrators?

In my view, no one. It has to be either the Russian State, or someone within Russia with access to facilities that the state should have known about.

larssnowpharter
17th Mar 2018, 13:07
VP959
Thank you for what is an excellent and clear summation of the situation as it stands at the moment.

stagger
17th Mar 2018, 13:15
Strange. Just watched a BBC news bulletin - no mention of the Glushkov case.

In light of the Skripal poisoning - you'd think a murder investigation into the death in London of Russian critic of Putin would be getting more coverage.

DaveReidUK
17th Mar 2018, 13:21
It has to be either the Russian State, or someone within Russia with access to facilities that the state should have known about.

Good summary.

The question is whether the same response is valid regardless of whether it turns out to be an act by the Russian state or its failure to act.

glad rag
17th Mar 2018, 13:22
Corbyn, where were these staunch statements during the debate in the hoc?

BBC demanding all the facts.

BBC reporting/coverage getting very close to sedition in places considering the stakes at play.

Effluent Man
17th Mar 2018, 13:28
No, you are probably just used to Fox News.

fitliker
17th Mar 2018, 13:32
If a crime was committed , why no criminal charges ?
Why no arrest warrants issued ?
Are we not a nation of Laws ?
Are the Tories thinking themselves above the Law again ?
Ignoring the Rule of Law ?
Making false accusations NIL FACTUM.
When the Tory Thatcher sent killers to Ireland to execute Irishmen without trial ,it did not go well for the men she sent to their deaths.
May is just another Tory idiot who thinks Laws do not apply to the ruling class like her and Boris the sooner we are rid of these Lawless Tory gangsters the better it will be for the ordinary human beings that inhabit these islands.


To make public accusations without facts is not only stupid, but dangerous.

Buster15
17th Mar 2018, 14:23
If a crime was committed , why no criminal charges ?
Why no arrest warrants issued ?
Are we not a nation of Laws ?
Are the Tories thinking themselves above the Law again ?
Ignoring the Rule of Law ?
Making false accusations NIL FACTUM.
When the Tory Thatcher sent killers to Ireland to execute Irishmen without trial ,it did not go well for the men she sent to their deaths.
May is just another Tory idiot who thinks Laws do not apply to the ruling class like her and Boris the sooner we are rid of these Lawless Tory gangsters the better it will be for the ordinary human beings that inhabit these islands.


To make public accusations without facts is not only stupid, but dangerous.

I was tempted to ignore such an obvious troll post but thought I would point out that OF COURSE a crime has been committed - attempted murder.
Obviously no arrests have been made thus far as the actual perpetrators who delivered the nerve agent not yet been formally identified. The actual nerve agent has been identified and the most likely source.
As to 'are we a nation of Laws' the international support suggest the answer.

Andy_S
17th Mar 2018, 14:33
Ignoring the Rule of Law ?

How, exactly, has this country ignored the rule of law in this case?

My recollection is that a chemical weapon was deployed, on British soil, by a foreign agency, against people going about their everyday business.

And yet you bang on about the UK ignoring the rule of law.......

BruisedCrab
17th Mar 2018, 14:37
There is no point interacting with (or reading) Russian trolls illogical tosh. Ignore the buffoons and let them tire of their own bluster and lies.

Bergerie1
17th Mar 2018, 14:39
For those of us who know little about what goes on inside Porton Down, this documentary gives a very balanced view. It shows how slow the painstaking process is for the disposal of unused chemical weapons. These agents are very difficult to produce (only state controlled facilities can produce them) and also, how exceedingly dangerous they are to handle. I am reliably informed that it takes at least two years to train someone to the standard of skill required to work in these containment areas. https://www.dailymotion.com/video/x65otqg

In view of how little is known about these novichok agents the men at Porton Down did very well to identify it so quickly.

Undoubtedly, knowledge of these agents in the West was limited until this man, Vil Mirzayanov, ‘spilt the beans’ and helped our side to pinpoint better the organophosphates involved. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qbO3yEsINGo

VP959
17th Mar 2018, 16:29
I can vouch for the Michael Mosely programme being worth watching, as it's as accurate a representation of Porton Down as I've ever seen or read. For those who think that chemical agents can be knocked up in a shed, it's worth watching just to see how tricky working in a Cat 3 containment area is, let alone the later shots of the Cat 4 facility. When watching, bear in mind that everything that leaves those facilities, including all the air, is decontaminated completely, 24/7, 365 days a year.

There are also several part of that programme that show, in rather crude form, the signatures of agents that are relied on for diagnostic analysis. You don't need samples of the agent for comparison if you already have the signature data, and although signature data is held securely, it poses no risk in and of itself.

G-CPTN
17th Mar 2018, 17:47
The 'Novichok' nerve agent allegedly used in the Sergei Skripal attack likely came from a country were Russian chemists were taken after the Soviet Union collapsed to continue their research, Russia’s OPCW envoy told RT.
“As for ‘Novichok,’ there was never a scientific program under such a codename in the Russian Federation,” Alexander Shulgin, Russia’s permanent representative at the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) said. “However, in Soviet times, research began to produce a new generation of poisonous substances. Such research was carried out not only in the USSR, but also in the US.”

As the Soviet Union collapsed in the early 1990s, foreign “special services took a group of scientists… with the research that existed since the Soviet times” out of the country so that they could go on with their studies of poisonous substances, he said.

“We know the exact countries where such work continued, achieving certain success,” Shulgin said, without naming any. “The positive results of those studies can now be found in open sources.”

“Therefore, we can assume that the source of the substance used [against Skripal] in Salisbury is concealed in one of the countries where this research continued and achieved certain success,” the Russian envoy said.
From:- https://www.rt.com/news/421555-novichok-uk-skripal-opcw/

I make no claim for the veracity of the above - I merely reproduce the claim.

VP959
17th Mar 2018, 18:10
From:- https://www.rt.com/news/421555-novichok-uk-skripal-opcw/

I make no claim for the veracity of the above - I merely reproduce the claim.

Interesting story, pity the known facts (like the evidence produced at the trial of Mirzayanov by the Russians in 1992) don't line up with it very well.

I suspect Mirzayanov was really fed up with his working conditions and pay, more than anything else, and that this was probably his main motive when he released information that wasn't specifically about the novichok programme, but a general criticism of the way that Russiia was developing lethal agents in poor conditions.

It was the Russians themselves that confirmed the existence of the novichok programme, in the evidence that was finally produced against Mirzayanov, which rather makes their current claims a bit foolish, IMHO.

Apart from anything else, even if Fort Detrick had made samples of some of the novichok agents back in the mid-1990's, (and I'm pretty sure Porton didn't) I can't see any possible motive for the US wanting to assassinate a Russian traitor in an open area in the UK, risking the lives of innocent passers-by. It just doesn't make any sense, as not even Trump would be that crazy (and just like the buck stops with Putin if the Russians were behind it, the buck would stop with Trump if the US was behind it).

On the other hand, the idea of a few irate former KGB people hatching a plan to assassinate Sergei Skripal using one of their own secret chemical agents, given their track record of undertaking extrajudicial killings in the UK and elsewhere, seems far more likely, with or without the direct sanction of their President.

fitliker
17th Mar 2018, 18:19
Forgive me for having more faith in our courts than those professional story tellers who write dodgey dossiers .


Asking why no criminal charges in a criminal act is a legitimate question.


Play the ball and not the player :)

VP959
17th Mar 2018, 18:43
Forgive me for having more faith in our courts than those professional story tellers who write dodgey dossiers .


Asking why no criminal charges in a criminal act is a legitimate question.


Play the ball and not the player :)

Not sure where you're coming from, but the names of the perpetrators may well not be known yet, or at least haven't been made public, so under English Law no charge can be laid yet (and none has, AFAICS from all the reports I've read).

I would assume that, just as with any other crime, when the identity of the perpetrators is known then charges may well be laid against them.

It's inevitable that the media will speculate when there is a dearth of information, and equally inevitable that some will conclude from all the speculation in the media that some sort of "dodgy dossier" may exist somewhere, but I've seen no evidence in any reporting that this has happened here.

What we do have is a growing amount of circumstantial evidence that really only points at one nation state, or at least someone, or more likely several people, from that nation state who had access to state assets (novochok A234 had to be a state asset, as no one else has prepared it, and it's very existence has only previously been speculation by the West).

racedo
17th Mar 2018, 18:53
Look at the circumstantial evidence we have:

1. The target was a Russian, considered to be a traitor by Russia.


Russia had no use for him, pardoned him and released him even though he wished to stay in Russia.


2. Russian law allows the extrajudicial assassination of enemies of the state anywhere in the world.


As do the laws of UK/US/Israel and others....

Published previously on this thread was about UK military in NI crossing border and killing IRA suspects...................
Israel had openly indicated it has killed circa 2700 enemies of it
US has killed enemies of the state and overthrown Govts who were against it plus invaded them.


3. The agent used is uniquely Russian in origin, and has never, AFAIK, been manufactured or tested outside Russia.

Incorrect as OPCW have indicated that post USSR fall the US removed chemical weapons out of fromer USSR states for destruction.


4. There is a track record of Russian dissidents, traitors or enemies of the Russian state being murdered outside Russia.

I don't think any of the big states is immune in that just maybe more subtle.


5. We are pretty certain that Alexander Litvinenko was murdered by a man who is now a member of the Russian Duma, and who was effectively promoted into a parliamentary role partly in order to give him greater immunity. He has publicly stated "If someone has caused the Russian state serious damage, they should be exterminated". For this to happen the President must have had some involvement.


We are pretty certain Saddam Hussein has Chemical weapons so lets invade springs to mind.



6. The Russian President publicly said, two days ago, that "Russia has no borders", implying that it could act anywhere in the world.


UK/US/France special forces are openly in Syria with zero permission from Govt of Syria............... they haev also been in Libya / Iraq / Afgahnsitan etc etc.................. it doesn't imply they could act, they are already doing so.



7. The Russian President has previously openly lied, on several occasions. Take, for example, the annexation of Crimea. He denounced the reports by journalists saying they had seen Russian troops in Crimea, saying that anyone could be wearing Russian uniforms as a deception. Once Crimea was annexed he openly praised the Russian troops that had taken action there.


I believe he stated there were no additional miltary sent it, correct as there were already thousands of Russian military living there.



The alternative is to flip this question around, and try to determine which other state would have had the motive, and means, to carry out this attack. The idea that it's a "false flag" operation falls over because there is nothing to be gained by the two states that might possibly have the capability to undertake such an attack, the UK and the US. This will harm both the UK and US, without a doubt, and that's without considering the stupidity of using a bloody dangerous nerve agent in a public area, when anyone could have been affected by it, not just the target(s).

Could it be a terrorist incident? Well, if so, then why have none of the usual suspects come forward to claim credit for it? I also doubt that any of the radical groups have even 1% of the technical capability and access to facilities to prepare this agent into a deliverable system.

Who does that leave as possible perpetrators?

In my view, no one. It has to be either the Russian State, or someone within Russia with access to facilities that the state should have known about.

Afraid that logic is skewed as in WW2 UK allowed Coventry be bombed even when it knew in advance it was targeted. 2000 casualties included 600 deaths and allowed Churchill to justify RAF used of Incendiary bombs ib German cities.

In Australia thousands of squaddies were put into open to witness atomic bombs to see affects.

Chemical and biological weapons have been tested in hospitals on people or they can just call it unauthorised drug testing.

In NI as the investigations have shown that security forces allowed murders to occur and in certain cases sanctioned them because they were supposedly protecting sources.

racedo
17th Mar 2018, 18:58
What we do have is a growing amount of circumstantial evidence that really only points at one nation state, or at least someone, or more likely several people, from that nation state who had access to state assets (novochok A234 had to be a state asset, as no one else has prepared it, and it's very existence has only previously been speculation by the West).

You know it was that Chemical how ?

Because someone said it was......

VP959
17th Mar 2018, 19:12
Russia had no use for him, pardoned him and released him even though he wished to stay in Russia.

Not true. He was pardoned on the sole condition that he was transferred to the UK as a part of an exhange, and is a UK citizen now, not a Russian citizen.



As do the laws of UK/US/Israel and others....

Published previously on this thread was about UK military in NI crossing border and killing IRA suspects...................
Israel had openly indicated it has killed circa 2700 enemies of it
US has killed enemies of the state and overthrown Govts who were against it plus invaded them.

Not true for the UK. We outlawed "shoot to kill" decades ago, and so it is not lawful.


Incorrect as OPCW have indicated that post USSR fall the US removed chemical weapons out of fromer USSR states for destruction.

Not the whole truth at all. The only CW destroyed under the CWC by the former Soviet Union and then the Russian Federation was the materiel that was known and had been declared. None of the novochok agents were either declared or subject to destruction orders.


I don't think any of the big states is immune in that just maybe more subtle.

You may be right, but what's the motive and what would one of the couple of states with the capability hope to gain by such a reckless act?



We are pretty certain Saddam Hussein has Chemical weapons so lets invade springs to mind.

All the scientific evidence gathered by the inspection teams, including former colleagues of mine, were clear - no evidence was found of WMD before GWII. The dodgy dossier was a political, not scientific, document.




UK/US/France special forces are openly in Syria with zero permission from Govt of Syria............... they haev also been in Libya / Iraq / Afgahnsitan etc etc.................. it doesn't imply they could act, they are already doing so.

I don't see what this has to do with the collection of circumstantial evidence that relates to these attempted murders at all.




I believe he stated there were no additional miltary sent it, correct as there were already thousands of Russian military living there

Not sure of the meaning here at all, sorry.




Afraid that logic is skewed as in WW2 UK allowed Coventry be bombed even when it knew in advance it was targeted. 2000 casualties included 600 deaths and allowed Churchill to justify RAF used of Incendiary bombs ib German cities.

In Australia thousands of squaddies were put into open to witness atomic bombs to see affects.

Chemical and biological weapons have been tested in hospitals on people or they can just call it unauthorised drug testing.

In NI as the investigations have shown that security forces allowed murders to occur and in certain cases sanctioned them because they were supposedly protecting sources.

This seems very hard to understand to me.

There is no evidence, and never has been, that chemical or biological weapons have ever been tested in UK hospitals. Testing on human subjects ceased many decades ago here in the UK.

What happened in NI a couple of decades ago isn't related to what happened in Salisbury a week ago in any way, shape or form.

VP959
17th Mar 2018, 19:15
You know it was that Chemical how ?

Because someone said it was......

Because it was, and no, it wasn't because "someone said it was", it was because a very highly respected former colleague says it was.

Lascaille
17th Mar 2018, 19:20
Because it was, and no, it wasn't because "someone said it was", it was because a very highly respected former colleague says it was.

And did that individual take the sample themselves from the location in question?

VP959
17th Mar 2018, 19:29
And did that individual take the sample themselves from the location in question?

Normal rules regarding the Chain of Custody of Evidence applied, as this is a criminal investigation, for suspected attempted murder.

It has to be this way, or else the evidence would not stand up in court, if this case ever gets that far. The lab is a Home Office accredited forensic science facility.

Lascaille
17th Mar 2018, 19:43
Normal rules regarding the Chain of Custody of Evidence applied, as this is a criminal investigation, for suspected attempted murder.

It has to be this way, or else the evidence would not stand up in court, if this case ever gets that far. The lab is a Home Office accredited forensic science facility.

So they're government employees? Working for a government agency or a government accredited lab? I'm not trying to troll you but making a point.

VP959
17th Mar 2018, 19:50
So they're government employees? Working for a government agency or a government accredited lab? I'm not trying to troll you but making a point.

They are employees of a Trading Fund agency, that is an accredited forensic science lab. The same agency does a great deal of explosive forensic work, collecting and examining materials from terrorist bombs, IEDs used in places like Afghanistan, Iraq, etc, and providing evidence to courts as accredited expert witnesses.

Sallyann1234
17th Mar 2018, 19:51
Afraid that logic is skewed as in WW2 UK allowed Coventry be bombed even when it knew in advance it was targeted. 2000 casualties included 600 deaths and allowed Churchill to justify RAF used of Incendiary bombs ib German cities.

Absolutely wrong.
That was a rumour started later which has no foundation whatsoever. If you have any evidence it is true, you can change history. I'd be glad to see it and so would many others.

Lascaille
17th Mar 2018, 20:33
Normal rules regarding the Chain of Custody of Evidence applied, as this is a criminal investigation, for suspected attempted murder.

Do you believe employees of the security services have to follow those rules? Or if they were ordered to 'replace their sample with our sample leaving the chain of custody intact' would they just do exactly that...

I'm not implying this took place, but if you're not thinking on this scale you should be.

Effluent Man
17th Mar 2018, 20:34
This whole affair with Mrs.May getting an uplift in popularity and the opposition in disarray and appearing unpatriotic puts me in mind of a beleaguered Mrs.T. When along came General Galtieri...just saying!

racedo
17th Mar 2018, 21:20
Because it was, and no, it wasn't because "someone said it was", it was because a very highly respected former colleague says it was.

On 8th July a person in a prominent position with Met Police told me that they had shot someone dead at Canary Wharf just as they exploded a suicide bomb and he went everywhere, he told me name of building etc.
It was amusing as I was sat in a Coffee shop right across from it but obviously the decorators had been quick as he had described the sheer mayhem with hundreds of windows blown in.

Later he said he had false info, kind of similar to what was issued after they killed the Brazilian in Stocvkwell.
Met proven to have lied but their original story was one everybody went with.

racedo
17th Mar 2018, 21:21
Normal rules regarding the Chain of Custody of Evidence applied, as this is a criminal investigation, for suspected attempted murder.

It has to be this way, or else the evidence would not stand up in court, if this case ever gets that far. The lab is a Home Office accredited forensic science facility.

Oh the lab will do the job they are told to do BUT what they are given may not be what came off the site.

Switching evidence is not new..........................

racedo
17th Mar 2018, 21:25
This whole affair with Mrs.May getting an uplift in popularity and the opposition in disarray and appearing unpatriotic puts me in mind of a beleaguered Mrs.T. When along came General Galtieri...just saying!

Not unreasonable.

Only problem if she goes to country will be she made the miscalculation before but given campaign that Corbyn was a traitor you can see a pattern.

flash8
17th Mar 2018, 22:11
This whole affair with Mrs.May getting an uplift in popularity and the opposition in disarray and appearing unpatriotic puts me in mind of a beleaguered Mrs.T. When along came General Galtieri...just saying!

Undeniably this came along when it was needed, coupled with the general murkiness of the story, that a former UK Ambassador to Russia (Sir Rod Braithwaite) says (exact quote) "senior ministers have been 'shooting their mouths off'" says a lot.

Coupled with the emergence of (what seems now to have bizarrely solidified as fact) that the nerve agent was carried in by his daughter (bloody convenient) so that no suspects will ever be found or identified (beyond "Russia").

More to the point how was it delivered? And how could it be delivered in isolation? Nobody could have read the mind of the daughter.

What worries me so much about the entire narrative is that it seems so contrived. Now whether or not that is true it is an impression quite a few people seem to believe (not wrongly in my opinion).

Always keep an open mind.

k3k3
17th Mar 2018, 22:20
Not unreasonable.

Only problem if she goes to country will be she made the miscalculation before but given campaign that Corbyn was a traitor you can see a pattern.

Are your English language skills getting a bit wobbly in all the excitement, tovaritch?

Highway1
17th Mar 2018, 22:28
This whole affair with Mrs.May getting an uplift in popularity and the opposition in disarray and appearing unpatriotic puts me in mind of a beleaguered Mrs.T. When along came General Galtieri...just saying!

So MI6 killed Litvinenko to give a boost to Tony Blair when he was being pressured by the new Tory Leader, David Cameron?

I think this tin foil hat wearing is great - I should have tried it earlier. :ok:

DaveReidUK
17th Mar 2018, 22:29
Is this a private race to the bottom, or can anyone join in ?

Sallyann1234
17th Mar 2018, 23:03
Oh the lab will do the job they are told to do BUT what they are given may not be what came off the site.

Switching evidence is not new..........................
Except that the lab staff collected the evidence themselves. The police would have no idea what to look for or how to pick it up.

longer ron
17th Mar 2018, 23:12
The police would have no idea what to look for or how to pick it up.

In fact they would stay well clear of it - I know I would!

Some people sure have vivid imaginations on here :hmm:

There is only one country who has 'form' for this sort of attack.

atakacs
17th Mar 2018, 23:49
1. The target was a Russian, considered to be a traitor by Russia.


Actually I believe they (both father and daughter) were UK citizens. And more importantly there is definitely a tacit but well respected rule not to come after swapped agents.


2. Russian law allows the extrajudicial assassination of enemies of the state anywhere in the world.


True - as many other countries unfortunately, starting with the US of A...


3. The agent used is uniquely Russian in origin, and has never, AFAIK, been manufactured or tested outside Russia.


Wrong - it has been (quite recently) synthesized by Iran (http://www.spectroscopynow.com/details/ezine/1591ca249b2/Iranian-chemists-identify-Russian-chemical-warfare-agents.html?tzcheck=1,1,1,1,1&&tzcheck=1&tzcheck=1&tzcheck=1) in full cooperation with the OPCW.

And the whole story behind those novichoks is quite murky, the say the least. To the point that Porton Down scientists were, as recently as 2016, doubting their existence:

Information on these compounds has been sparse in the public domain, mostly originating from a dissident Russian military chemist, Vil Mirzayanov. No independent confirmation of the structures or the properties of such compounds has been published. (Dr Robin Black, Head of the UK Detection Laboratory Development: Historical Use and Properties of Chemical Warfare Agents. Royal Society of Chemistry)

In 2013 the Scientific Advisory Board of the OPCW was of the opnion that:

The name “Novichok” is used in a publication of a former Soviet scientist who reported investigating a new class of nerve agents suitable for use as binary chemical weapons. The SAB states that it has insufficient information to comment on the existence or properties of “Novichoks”. (OPCW: Report of the Scientific Advisory Board on developments in science and technology for the Third Review Conference 27 March 2013)

Thus, as late as 2013, those components were not mentioned in the OPCW list of chemical weapons, with explicit US and UK agreement. This has changed thanks to the Iranian contribution, of all people !


4. There is a track record of Russian dissidents, traitors or enemies of the Russian state being murdered outside Russia.


Would you have some specifics (except for Litvinenko of course) ? I am not saying it doesn't happen, just that it is not as common as you would seem to imply.


5. We are pretty certain that Alexander Litvinenko was murdered by a man who is now a member of the Russian Duma, and who was effectively promoted into a parliamentary role partly in order to give him greater immunity. He has publicly stated "If someone has caused the Russian state serious damage, they should be exterminated". For this to happen the President must have had some involvement.


That's still a very contentious one to say the least. But I guess we can agree here.


6. The Russian President publicly said, two days ago, that "Russia has no borders", implying that it could act anywhere in the world.


Again this holds true for many other countries, although few are as brasant in their public statement. To a certain extent I'd commend Putin for being less of an hypocrite !


7. The Russian President has previously openly lied, on several occasions. Take, for example, the annexation of Crimea. He denounced the reports by journalists saying they had seen Russian troops in Crimea, saying that anyone could be wearing Russian uniforms as a deception. Once Crimea was annexed he openly praised the Russian troops that had taken action there.


Wow... seriously ? Yes, politician / government do lie !

The alternative is to flip this question around, and try to determine which other state would have had the motive, and means, to carry out this attack. The idea that it's a "false flag" operation falls over because there is nothing to be gained by the two states that might possibly have the capability to undertake such an attack, the UK and the US. This will harm both the UK and US, without a doubt, and that's without considering the stupidity of using a bloody dangerous nerve agent in a public area, when anyone could have been affected by it, not just the target(s).


That's indeed the interesting one. There is currently a clear concerted effort to "ratchet up" tension between Russia and the occidental (mostly Anglo-Saxon) world, seemingly at any cost, and that might be motive enough. Yet even the cynic in me would be hard pressed to imagine this assassination attempt being a false flag.
Conversely, Russia could have had him ‘disappeared’ while he was in jail, not to mention the intervening 8 years that he’s been going to fancy restaurants, probably with UK taxpayers paying the bill. There is very little logic in attempting to murder a man that was no threat to them whatsoever, especially in the current climate of Russia paranoia. My least improbable layman hypothesis is that it was someone / some group affected by the Skripal treason (I'm pretty sure it had dire consequences for many agents) - which indeed points to Russia. But as a rogue operation.

galaxy flyer
18th Mar 2018, 00:44
You all might check this out on US policy, endorsed by both Republicans and Democrats. War is not the same “game” as assassination of non-combatants, such as these two victims.

https://www.lawfareblog.com/legality-us-governments-targeted-killing-program-under-domestic-law

flash8
18th Mar 2018, 01:11
Is this a private race to the bottom, or can anyone join in ?

You should know JB has always been a race to the bottom := just a little bit faster than some other forums!

VP959
18th Mar 2018, 08:10
Do you believe employees of the security services have to follow those rules? Or if they were ordered to 'replace their sample with our sample leaving the chain of custody intact' would they just do exactly that...

I'm not implying this took place, but if you're not thinking on this scale you should be.

There were no SIS people at the initial scene and gathering of the first samples, AFAIK, it took them longer to get there as it wasn't initially classified as a terrorist event. Sergei Skripal wasn't under active surveillance, for a few reasons, but probably just had a desk officer in town looking after his file. He had no real value to the UK, other than the obligation we owed him for his previous work, as all his information had been passed on many years before, and he was just living on a pension.

The security services don't have, and aren't trained to use, the protective equipment and sensors needed to collect evidence, either, they rely on that being done by trusted forensic experts, be they working for the police or for an accredited forensic lab.

Our security services are very under-staffed and don't even have the resources to keep track of more than around 10% of suspected terrorists, so they wouldn't have wasted effort keeping tabs on Sergei Skripal, until it became clear that it was a possible terrorist incident. At best he may have had a phone call once a year or so.

Even when they were better resourced, back in the 1990s, they would have delegated evidence collection from an incident like this to a forensic service, which would have been Porton Down for any chemical/biological incident or Fort Halstead (also a part of DSTL and relocated/relocating to Porton Down) for any bomb or IED incident. I have no doubt at all they still work the same way - using trusted experts whenever they need special skill and equipment,

VP959
18th Mar 2018, 08:33
Wrong - it has been (quite recently) synthesized by Iran (http://www.spectroscopynow.com/details/ezine/1591ca249b2/Iranian-chemists-identify-Russian-chemical-warfare-agents.html?tzcheck=1,1,1,1,1&&tzcheck=1&tzcheck=1&tzcheck=1) in full cooperation with the OPCW.

They haven't made A234. The OPCW is not permitted to "cooperate" only act to oversee controls agreed under the CWC.

And the whole story behind those novichoks is quite murky, the say the least. To the point that Porton Down scientists were, as recently as 2016, doubting their existence:



In 2013 the Scientific Advisory Board of the OPCW was of the opnion that:



Thus, as late as 2013, those components were not mentioned in the OPCW list of chemical weapons, with explicit US and UK agreement. This has changed thanks to the Iranian contribution, of all people !

Don't believe all the unclassified data you read in the media or any journal!

The signatures of the main novichok agents, were known here and in the US, as was the minor alteration of A232 to A234. Iran hasn't produced A234, I suspect because it has characteristics that make it less suitable as a war-like agent (like the long time between exposure and the onset of symptoms, for example).



Would you have some specifics (except for Litvinenko of course) ? I am not saying it doesn't happen, just that it is not as common as you would seem to imply.

Currently 14/15 deaths in the UK are being investigated as possibly suspicious, and it seems that the most recent was not natural causes either (hard to compress your own neck as a means of killing yourself, I'd have thought). Read through the circumstances of the deaths of some of the other 14. One or two stand out, like the chap that committed suicide (officially) using two different knives..............



That's indeed the interesting one. There is currently a clear concerted effort to "ratchet up" tension between Russia and the occidental (mostly Anglo-Saxon) world, seemingly at any cost, and that might be motive enough. Yet even the cynic in me would be hard pressed to imagine this assassination attempt being a false flag.
Conversely, Russia could have had him ‘disappeared’ while he was in jail, not to mention the intervening 8 years that he’s been going to fancy restaurants, probably with UK taxpayers paying the bill. There is very little logic in attempting to murder a man that was no threat to them whatsoever, especially in the current climate of Russia paranoia. My least improbable layman hypothesis is that it was someone / some group affected by the Skripal treason (I'm pretty sure it had dire consequences for many agents) - which indeed points to Russia. But as a rogue operation.

I agree. I suspect he seriously pissed off others in the KGB, especially friends or family of those he betrayed. Many would probably have had a good motive for wanting to kill him. As the Russian President openly supports such killings, and is known to have supported at least one other who most probably committed something similar, it's not hard to draw a conclusion that covert state assistance may well have been made available to anyone who wanted to try and kill Sergei Skripal.

sfm818
18th Mar 2018, 09:03
...Undoubtedly, knowledge of these agents in the West was limited until this man, Vil Mirzayanov, ‘spilt the beans’...

Incredibly, he published the formula IN FULL, in 2008. Read on:

https://www.voanews.com/a/russian-chemical-weapons-specialist-moscow-sure-no-one-would-trace-poison/4301213.html?src=voa-editor-picks

VP959
18th Mar 2018, 09:13
Incredibly, he published the formula IN FULL in a 2008 publication. Read on.

https://www.voanews.com/a/russian-chemical-weapons-specialist-moscow-sure-no-one-would-trace-poison/4301213.html?src=voa-editor-picks


There are between 80 and 100 agents in that broad group that were being developed under the name "novichok". By his own admission at the time, Mirzayanov was only peripherally involved with a small number of them. His primary complaints, and the reason he decided to become a whistleblower within Russia (which led to his arrest) was because he considered his working conditions were poor, he wasn't being paid enough money and he felt that money being given to Russia to disarm was being deflected into this weapons programme. Only later, after his arrest and his trial collapsed (because none of the information he had revealed was secret or classified), and he had relocated to the West did he start spinning the yarn about doing everything for moral reasons.

The man has, it seems, always been motivated by making money, and has recently jumped on this bandwagon as a way to raise his profile and probably get a bit more money for interviews, and maybe write yet another book.

Worth noting that he emigrated to the US on his own accord, with no restrictions, and not as a part of any exchange. That indicates that neither Russia nor the US felt he had much knowledge that was of value.

Much of what he has said in the past few days has been pure BS, sadly, so I'd personally take most of it with a large pinch of salt.

atakacs
18th Mar 2018, 09:25
Don't believe all the unclassified data you read in the media or any journal!


I will certainly try to keep a healthy dose of scepticism - thanks for the reminder ;


The signatures of the main novichok agents, were known here and in the US, as was the minor alteration of A232 to A234. Iran hasn't produced A234, I suspect because it has characteristics that make it less suitable as a war-like agent (like the long time between exposure and the onset of symptoms, for example).


Am I to understand that the novichok agents signature were known to the OPCW, yet they decided to go on record that they did not know them and would not ban them ? What would be the rationale ?

VP959
18th Mar 2018, 09:44
Am I to understand that the novichok agents signature were known to the OPCW, yet they decided to go on record that they did not know them and would not ban them ? What would be the rationale ?

That's not the OPCWs role. They are primarily record and materiel checkers, they don't do science, as such. When they visit all they are interested in is checking that the facility at the nation they are inspecting has correct records, is holding the stocks of materiel that it says it is holding (they physically check, but do not enter containment facilities beyond secure storage areas) and they check things like destruction records.

atakacs
18th Mar 2018, 09:59
Interesting.

So who is in charge, in the international framework aiming to ban chemical weapons, to decide what is actually a forbidden weapon ?

VP959
18th Mar 2018, 10:13
Interesting.

So who is in charge, in the international framework aiming to ban chemical weapons, to decide what is actually a forbidden weapon ?

Tricky one. They are officially listed in the CWC, but there are a lot of potential chemical weapon agents that aren't on the CWC list. This was one reason for the establishment of the novichok programme, to create agents that couldn't be classified as weapons and so couldn't go on the CWC list.

The main problem is that there are an awful lot of organophosphate and other compounds, and many are used legitimately in industry or agriculture. Technically, even many of the older fly sprays are nerve agents - they knock down and ultimately kill flies using exactly the same mechanism as something like Sarin or VX. Even newer sprays using pyrethroids are insect nerve agents, although often described as "natural" because the base compounds were originally extracted from flowers.

racedo
18th Mar 2018, 11:29
Are your English language skills getting a bit wobbly in all the excitement, tovaritch?

Is that the best you can do..................... should have stayed with the sheep.

racedo
18th Mar 2018, 11:33
Except that the lab staff collected the evidence themselves. The police would have no idea what to look for or how to pick it up.


Afraid you don't know that.................. That is what you were told.

racedo
18th Mar 2018, 11:41
There were no SIS people at the initial scene and gathering of the first samples, AFAIK,


People have dual roles in working for one agency while also working for another at same time.................... its not that uncommon as Embassys are staffed with paper pushers whose real job is elsewhere.

If need to visit a lab quietly and unseen, someone who knows what they are looking for and what is what rather than someone who doesn't is required.

racedo
18th Mar 2018, 11:44
Worth noting that he emigrated to the US on his own accord, with no restrictions, and not as a part of any exchange. That indicates that neither Russia nor the US felt he had much knowledge that was of value.

Much of what he has said in the past few days has been pure BS, sadly, so I'd personally take most of it with a large pinch of salt.

"That indicates that neither Russia nor the US felt he had much knowledge that was of value"...................... AT THAT POINT IN TIME.

Point is that nobody may have understood what he had until much later.

KelvinD
18th Mar 2018, 12:08
Prophead: You seem to be out of touch. Corbyn has not rushed to the defence of Russia. In fact, only minutes ago, his mate McDonnell has been on record quite clearly stating Russia must be to some extent responsible. Corbyn's attack was on the total lack of due process with May accusing, finding guilty and sentencing the Russian government without going through the usual process of a possible criminal investigation.
Incidentally, while he is not a Corbyn fan, read Peter Hitchens' blog of today. He makes some very good points in defence of Corbyn.

VP959
18th Mar 2018, 12:16
People have dual roles in working for one agency while also working for another at same time.................... its not that uncommon as Embassys are staffed with paper pushers whose real job is elsewhere.

If need to visit a lab quietly and unseen, someone who knows what they are looking for and what is what rather than someone who doesn't is required.

Unlike you, I know the subject, though, and find it pretty laughable at some of the conspiracies that are being raised, like this one.

More often than not the apparent facts are reality, even some of the pretty bizarre ones, and the idea of coordinating so many people into some sort of conspiracy and then keeping it so quiet that it doesn't become public knowledge for decades is laughable.

It may have been entirely feasible to do something like this in the age before social media and near-constant surveillance that we have now, say in the 1950's or 60's, but now? Every man and his dog takes photos and videos with their phones. Our local councils have thousands of cameras everywhere. We don't have a single body controlling all this, 99% of the surveillance going on is done by individuals or private contractors, and you can be sure that they would love to sell a speculative story to the media, given half the chance.

VP959
18th Mar 2018, 12:17
"That indicates that neither Russia nor the US felt he had much knowledge that was of value"...................... AT THAT POINT IN TIME.

Point is that nobody may have understood what he had until much later.

He could not have gained any knowledge of the Russian programmes after his arrest in 1992, so could not have know about anything developed after that date. You need to check the timelines here carefully.

Stan Woolley
18th Mar 2018, 12:57
Unlike you, I know the subject, though,

Which subject(s) do you know, exactly?

sfm818
18th Mar 2018, 13:23
...We don't have a single body controlling all this...

The Invstigatory Powers Act/GCHQ.

BruisedCrab
18th Mar 2018, 13:28
Which subject(s) do you know, exactly?

Don’t tell ‘em Pike!

VP959
18th Mar 2018, 13:39
The Invstigatory Powers Act/GCHQ.

Both relate to communications surveillance, not control. GCHQ has no powers to control anything, other than choose what it does and does not intercept and monitor.

Worth having a look at how unconnected government is internally, and how many departments have been fighting internal turf wars for decades, most often driven by competition for budgets.

Anyone that's worked in central government will say much the same, that we just don't have "joined up government" anywhere, least of all when it comes to the nations 48 different police forces or special police forces, the various branches of the intelligence community, the multitude of licensed forensic labs, the NHS, fire and ambulance services etc, etc. Not even the FCO and the Home Office are well joined up - more often than not they seem to be working in opposition to each other.

I find it a bloody miracle that our government functions at all at times.

Bergerie1
18th Mar 2018, 14:19
Stan Woolley,

I can assure you that VP959 really does know what he is talking about. Unlike so many others on this thread.

Stan Woolley
18th Mar 2018, 14:45
Stan Woolley,

I can assure you that VP959 really does know what he is talking about. Unlike so many others on this thread.

Well, just like with the government, I guess we’ll have to have faith.

I’m quite sure he’s knowledgeable, but I’d like to know more before I ‘believe’. Just as Boris Johnson is without doubt the Foreign Secretary, he’d not be the person that I’d listen to when it comes to Chemistry.

I’m not one that is automatically impressed by scientists(or Foreign Secretaries). They are human, with human frailties, and human egos.

VP959
18th Mar 2018, 15:06
I’m not one that is automatically impressed by scientists(or Foreign Secretaries). They are human, with human frailties, and human egos.

A wise view, IMHO, and frankly I'd never take anything I'd read or heard at face value without checking to confirm as to whether or not it was accurate.

However, this is a public forum, and there are a lot of people that post here who cannot confirm personal information, for a host of reasons. Some relate to employment contractual conditions, some relate to laws, like the OSA, some relate to work activities that if publicly known could adversely affect their personal security.

Whether we like it or not, we have to accept that in the real world people are subject to restrictions as to what they can and cannot publish, and posting here is publishing.

barry lloyd
18th Mar 2018, 16:46
VP:

Given that the Skripals are effectively in a coma, either induced or as a side effect of the nerve agent, what do you think will be happening in terms of recovery? I appreciate you're not a medical doctor, but given what happened to Litvinenko, (which in effect was radiation poisoning), I wonder whether PD will be working on a solution - in both senses of the word - to try to mitigate the effects of the agent as much as possible. Presumably the authorities would want to try to interview them at some stage if at all possible.

Obviously it will be a long process and very likely to leave them both severely incapacitated, especially given that the father is reported as being diabetic.

KelvinD
18th Mar 2018, 16:53
atakacs: The daughter is Russian. According to one report she was on the verge of taking up British nationality but changed her mind, passed on that and returned to Russia. Presumably this is the reason Russia has opened a criminal case into the attempted murder of the daughter.
VP959: I think you shouldn't be so quick to rubbish what others may say. Iran's cooperation with OPCW was reported in January 2017 in this publication:
Iranian chemists identify Russian chemical warfare agents - Ezine - spectroscopyNOW.com (http://www.spectroscopynow.com/details/ezine/1591ca249b2/Iranian-chemists-identify-Russian-chemical-warfare-agents.html?tzcheck=1,1,1,1,1&&tzcheck=1&tzcheck=1&tzcheck=1)
I am guessing that the term "cooperation" may refer to Iran having told the OPCW what they were about to do, keeping them informed of progress and the eventual outcome.
Similarly, the injunction to not believe any unclassified data read in journals etc is mis-placed. When the info regarding Porton Down not having knowledge of a working example of Novichek agents, the comment was attributed to a Porton Down scientist. And, as far as I am aware, he has to date not publicly disowned that article. Makes it sound likely he really did say it, does it not?

VP959
18th Mar 2018, 17:27
VP:

Given that the Skripals are effectively in a coma, either induced or as a side effect of the nerve agent, what do you think will be happening in terms of recovery? I appreciate you're not a medical doctor, but given what happened to Litvinenko, (which in effect was radiation poisoning), I wonder whether PD will be working on a solution - in both senses of the word - to try to mitigate the effects of the agent as much as possible. Presumably the authorities would want to try to interview them at some stage if at all possible.

Obviously it will be a long process and very likely to leave them both severely incapacitated, especially given that the father is reported as being diabetic.

I've no medical qualifications, and TBH, pretty much all the defence against chemical agents has been focussed on immediate life-saving treatment, which even after all these years is still primarily an atropine auto-injector. As I understand it, unless atropine is administered very quickly after exposure, then it's of limited use in terms of longer term treatment.

My best guess is that the treatment regime would be the same, or similar, to that for any poisoning by organophosphates. That seems to mainly consist of ventilation and trying to keep the patients hydrated and fed with nutrients whilst the body tries to rid itself of the toxin. I'm not away of any longer term antidote, and it seems likely that recovery from exposure may never be 100% and can take months.


VP959: I think you shouldn't be so quick to rubbish what others may say. Iran's cooperation with OPCW was reported in January 2017 in this publication:
Iranian chemists identify Russian chemical warfare agents - Ezine - spectroscopyNOW.com (http://www.spectroscopynow.com/details/ezine/1591ca249b2/Iranian-chemists-identify-Russian-chemical-warfare-agents.html?tzcheck=1,1,1,1,1&&tzcheck=1&tzcheck=1&tzcheck=1)
I am guessing that the term "cooperation" may refer to Iran having told the OPCW what they were about to do, keeping them informed of progress and the eventual outcome.
Similarly, the injunction to not believe any unclassified data read in journals etc is mis-placed. When the info regarding Porton Down not having knowledge of a working example of Novichek agents, the comment was attributed to a Porton Down scientist. And, as far as I am aware, he has to date not publicly disowned that article. Makes it sound likely he really did say it, does it not?

The Iranian article was focussing on the use of various spectroscopy techniques to identify related agents (not A234) - there are around 80 to 100 different novichok agents, no one knows for sure how many, as they weren't ever reported to the CWC by Russia as such, they considered that the majority of them didn't qualify as chemical warfare agents. This may sound odd, but there are a few well-known chemical warfare agents that aren't listed as such by the CWC, the best known being chlorine, perhaps, a warfare agent that I would guess most have heard of, except it's not officially a chemical warfare agent at all!

As for Robin's article, it has to be placed in context, as the introductory chapter covering the history and development of chemical agents in an unclassified publication. All papers for publication in unclassified journals are carefully vetted, and although there is a genuine desire to be as open as possible, certain information is not going to be referred to openly, and may well be played down in order to not raise suspicion as to the extent of any knowledge of a specific area.

I'm not aware of this establishment having deliberately used misinformation in recent years, but it certainly did in years gone by - the Ronald Madison death being perhaps the best known example.

On the topic of misinformation, it seems the Russians are playing that game. Vladimir Chisov is a good example. He said this on the Andrew Marr show:


When asked how the nerve agent came to be used in Salisbury, he said: "When you have a nerve agent or whatever, you check it against certain samples that you retain in your laboratories.

"And Porton Down, as we now all know, is the largest military facility in the United Kingdom that has been dealing with chemical weapons research.

Which is essentially BS. You do not normally keep reference samples of lethal agents, for a host of reasons, not all connected with the extreme hazard they present. All you need to identify an agent is it's signature, just data, nothing more. With that you can make a positive identification without too much trouble, the major effort would be in extracting agent from the sample, eliminating the signatures of all the many contaminants and isolating and comparing the agent signature against a database of known agents.

Even if the signature for A234 wasn't on record, it is a known derivative of A232, and it seems highly likely that it's signature could be derived from that of A232 without needing to synthesise a sample for comparison, and that would most certainly be the preferred process.

Jack D
18th Mar 2018, 20:40
Vlad P re-elected .. wins 75 % of the votes with 50 % counted ? There’s confidence for you, nothing like a bit of political decorum

VP959
18th Mar 2018, 20:55
Vlad P re-elected .. wins 75 % of the votes with 50 % counted ? There’s confidence for you, nothing like a bit of political decorum

Worth looking at the reality, in economic terms, of Russia: https://tradingeconomics.com/russia/gdp

I was a bit surprised to find that Russia is really way, way down the ranks in terms of GDP. Currently below South Korea and above Spain. Not exactly the massive world power that all the BS might lead us to believe.

Even the little old UK has around double the GDP of Russia, which seems really surprising, and perhaps shows just how effective propaganda can be

Jack D
18th Mar 2018, 21:08
Yes, California has a bigger GDP than Russia, very dependent on natural resources I’d guess . I mean does anyone actually buy anything made in Russia, apart from weapons or the occasional dinner companion?

VP959
18th Mar 2018, 21:19
Yes, California has a bigger GDP than Russia, very dependent on natural resources I’d guess . I mean does anyone actually buy anything made in Russia, apart from weapons or the occasional dinner companion?

I'll admit to being pretty surprised by this, together with the rapid rise and fall in Russian GDP in the past few years.

It's changed my view of Russia as a world power, now knowing it's way down the ranks. It puts the activities of it's state condoned, or even state sponsored, extrajudicial activities into perspective.

How would we react if one of the states close to Russia in terms of GDP behaved as they do now?

I suspect we're still influenced by the history of the former Soviet Union, and associate Russia with the sort of influence that the Soviet Union once wielded, whereas the reality is that we should consider them as a pretty low ranking power, that has particularly effective propaganda operation.

Andy_S
18th Mar 2018, 21:24
I mean does anyone actually buy anything made in Russia, apart from weapons or the occasional dinner companion?

Well, there's the gas, of course. The gas that people keep telling us enables Vlad to hold all Europe to ransom. Personally, I think if we stopped buying it, he would be in a lot more trouble than we would.

Jack D
18th Mar 2018, 21:35
Even more surprising ... but not really
Is Russia’s GDP per capita is currently ranked 71st in the world about on a par with Greece . I do agree that old propaganda & disinformation habits die hard and they are very adept at it.. made even easier now that most of those pesky local journalists have been taught a lesson .

VP959
18th Mar 2018, 21:39
Well, there's the gas, of course. The gas that people keep telling us enables Vlad to hold all Europe to ransom. Personally, I think if we stopped buying it, he would be in a lot more trouble than we would.

According to this: Salisbury attack: How much of the UK's gas comes from Russia? - BBC News (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-43421431) we get between 1% and 1.6% of our gas from Russia, so we don't have much clout when it comes to telling them to bugger off.

Sallyann1234
18th Mar 2018, 21:39
And yet Putin can afford all that expenditure on new weaponry, while we are having to run down our defence.
Something doesn't add up.

VP959
18th Mar 2018, 21:44
And yet Putin can afford all that expenditure on new weaponry, while we are having to run down our defence.
Something doesn't add up.

My personal view is that there are two economies in Russia. There is the "official " economy, and the very much larger organised crime economy. I suspect that most of Russia's power comes from the latter.

Jetex_Jim
18th Mar 2018, 21:46
And yet Putin can afford all that expenditure on new weaponry, while we are having to run down our defence.
Something doesn't add up.

My personal view is that there are two economies in Russia. There is the "official " economy, and the very much larger organised crime economy. I suspect that most of Russia's power comes from the latter.

One would have thought that the clear, (taxpaying economy) must be pretty significant if it's funding weaponry.

barry lloyd
18th Mar 2018, 23:15
One would have thought that the clear, (taxpaying economy) must be pretty significant if it's funding weaponry.

Taxpaying? Hmmm - there isn't too much of that. Yes, if you are employed, you pay a nominal amount of tax, but salaries are very low - half the money ordinary people earn is from the black economy. Want a taxi? Hold up a packet of cigarettes and the driver will take you there for a few roubles if he's going that way. Got a dirty number plate? (Not an unusual occurrence in Russia in the winter). The police will stop you and demand you clean it and fine you on the spot. Oh - and don't ask for a receipt! Want to pass your driving test? It'll probably cost you about $250, regardless of your ability. (Check out YouTube for the ensuing carnage).

The tax on a new imported cars used to be 200% - not sure what it is now. You can buy the car and drive it from (say) Germany and import it yourself - but you still pay (less) taxes and other considerations - you get my drift?

Just started up a business? You'll get a visit from a couple of guys who will tell you how bad things would be if the building went on fire, or someone broke in and stole all your stock. It's known as a крыша (roof) and woe betide you if you don't look after it!

I think that's enough to give you flavour, but there's lots, lots,more!

racedo
18th Mar 2018, 23:27
It may have been entirely feasible to do something like this in the age before social media and near-constant surveillance that we have now, say in the 1950's or 60's, but now? Every man and his dog takes photos and videos with their phones. Our local councils have thousands of cameras everywhere. We don't have a single body controlling all this, 99% of the surveillance going on is done by individuals or private contractors, and you can be sure that they would love to sell a speculative story to the media, given half the chance.

Collectors of evidence wore full body suits and difficult to tell where Male / Female / Black or White................. plus media kept well back.

Jack D
18th Mar 2018, 23:44
The tax on a new imported cars used to be 200% - not sure what it is now. You can buy the car and drive it from (say) Germany and import it yourself - but you still pay (less) taxes and other considerations - you get my drift?

Or simply order a nearly new 4wd preferably black, to be lifted from a German suburb & “imported “ for a really good price ?

racedo
18th Mar 2018, 23:48
I'll admit to being pretty surprised by this, together with the rapid rise and fall in Russian GDP in the past few years.


Perhaps you should look at the US$ - Rub rate in that period of time......... from 30 to USD to 85 to USD.

Picking a single figure and deciding that is it is great but hey why ignore Govt Debt to GDP / Balance of Trade / etc etc

WingNut60
18th Mar 2018, 23:53
The tax on a new imported cars used to be 200% - not sure what it is now. You can buy the car and drive it from (say) Germany and import it yourself - but you still pay (less) taxes and other considerations - you get my drift?

Or simply order a nearly new 4wd preferably black, to be lifted from a German suburb & “imported “ for a really good price ?

The same reason that Vladivostok / Khabarovsk / Yakutsk are full of used / 2nd hand Japanese RHD cars - on a LHD system.

racedo
18th Mar 2018, 23:56
And yet Putin can afford all that expenditure on new weaponry, while we are having to run down our defence.
Something doesn't add up.

UK spent S48 billion, Russia spent $69 billion in 2017 ........................ of course you are overlooking very expensive kit that UK has ordered from certain companies and a need to keep their shareholders happy.

Jetex_Jim
19th Mar 2018, 07:34
Taxpaying? Hmmm - there isn't too much of that. Yes, if you are employed, you pay a nominal amount of tax, but salaries are very low - half the money ordinary people earn is from the black economy. Want a taxi? Hold up a packet of cigarettes and the driver will take you there for a few roubles if he's going that way. Got a dirty number plate? (Not an unusual occurrence in Russia in the winter). The police will stop you and demand you clean it and fine you on the spot. Oh - and don't ask for a receipt! Want to pass your driving test? It'll probably cost you about $250, regardless of your ability. (Check out YouTube for the ensuing carnage).

The tax on a new imported cars used to be 200% - not sure what it is now. You can buy the car and drive it from (say) Germany and import it yourself - but you still pay (less) taxes and other considerations - you get my drift?

Just started up a business? You'll get a visit from a couple of guys who will tell you how bad things would be if the building went on fire, or someone broke in and stole all your stock. It's known as a крыша (roof) and woe betide you if you don't look after it!

I think that's enough to give you flavour, but there's lots, lots,more!

If they are not collecting tax what are we to make of Putin's talk about new weapon purchases and even more astonishingly. https://futurism.com/putin-russia-mars-2019/

Putin has announced that he plans to send manned and unmanned missions to Mars as early as 2019. He also plans to send missions to the Moon and deeper into space.

The answer (most likely), this was all election year BS, these pledges to make Russia great again. Imagine that.

rjtjrt
19th Mar 2018, 10:04
I must say I have found VP959’s information fascinating.

DroneDog
19th Mar 2018, 10:37
Well, Boris has strapped on his clown shoes again and is out in full warmongering mode. The tabloid press in the UK are running stories which range from a Physic predicts Putin will be a world overlord on 40 yrs time to the Russians used dogs in experiments and they will hack the UK's electricity infrastructure to wreck it.

The usual NATO book club has all come out re-editing the WMD script just changing a few words here and there.
And yet not one solid piece of evidence exists actually liking the Russians to this bond movie style attack,,, on a washed out ex Spy who is a burden on the British taxpayer.
The chemical agent itself could have come from a number of sources, it's not the first time a country or criminal gang has placed false evidence to try to implicate another.
The only gem I take out all of this is that Russia definitely had nothing to do with it.

Now if we could only figure out who gains from alienating Russia from the rest of the world. Who has Russia pissed off probably over Syria.

Breaking news on the Florida bridge collapse, this was found at the scene near the failed steel rod.

Sallyann1234
19th Mar 2018, 10:38
UK spent S48 billion, Russia spent $69 billion in 2017 ........................ of course you are overlooking very expensive kit that UK has ordered from certain companies and a need to keep their shareholders happy.
It would be interesting to know how that $69 billion figure is arrived at, whether it is at internal Russian costs, or at international exchange rates, etc.
It does seem strange that Russia can develop significant new technologies like hypersonic missiles, Armata tanks - to name just two - while in the UK we are having to run down every branch of the military to frighteningly low levels.