Sexual Allegations and Government Fit-Ups 124


After I protested internally and in writing about UK complicity in torture, I found myself suddenly faced with eighteen allegations against me by my employer, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, including an allegation that I had criminally expedited visas for women in return for sexual favours, or to put the same allegation more bluntly, blackmailed visa applicants into sex.

My world collapsed. Like Strauss-Kahn, I ended up on suicide watch. I don’t know if DSK is innocent; he could indeed be a monster; but should he be innocent, I know the absolute hell he is going through.

After an official British government investigation, I was presented with the file of a single visa applicant, for a young lady named Albina Safarova. From her passport photo, she was very beautiful. On the back of her application, the visa officer had written “HMA [Her Majesty’s Ambassador] authorises issue.”

But if I had authorised issue, my signature should have been there; it wasn’t. What was there, was a letter from the lady’s visa sponsor, a man named Dermot Hassett. In his letter of support for the application, he stated that the circumstances of the application were known to the British Ambassador, Mr Craig Murray. On top of which, there was a letter from the visa issuing officer, Lorraine Clarke, who stated that she had issued the visa after being informed by two named British diplomats that Mr Hassett was a friend of mine.

So far, so damning. But I had never even heard of Mr Dermot Hassett or of Ms Albina Safarova. I had never met him. I had never met her. I was mystified. I eventually passed the papers on to a seasoned investigative journalist, Bob Graham. He tracked down Dermot Hassett, who told him that the British Embassy had advised him to add the phrase about my knowing the circumstances of the application to his letter of support. They said that would guarantee the visa would be issued.

I have no reason to believe that Dermot Hassett and Albina Safarova were anything other than unwitting dupes. But this application was directly and officially shown to me as evidence of my sexual inolvement in visa applications. I have no doubt at all that it was fabricated evidence to damage my reputation and lessen the impact of any potential public revelations I may make about UK complicity in torture or extraordinary rendition.

I was cleared on all charges, but that did not matter because the British government had damaged my reputation forever by promoting the allegations to the media. Those who deny the very possibility that modern western governments connive in quite deliberate conspiracies of injustice, have no idea what they are talking about. If you threaten them in any political way, they can certainly fabricate evidence against you.

I know; they did it to me.


124 thoughts on “Sexual Allegations and Government Fit-Ups

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  • dreoilin

    “You’re asking a question about his guilt prior even to his being charged. It’s a bizarre proposition”
    .
    Thu May 19, 2:46 pm ET
    .
    Dominique Strauss-Kahn, the former head of the International Monetary Fund, has been indicted on seven counts of sexual assault by a New York grand jury. The decision means he’ll stand trial or plead out for allegedly trying to rape a maid on Saturday in his room at the Sofitel Hotel in Midtown. Strauss-Kahn faces up to 25 years in prison if he’s convicted of all the counts against him.
    .
    http://news.yahoo.com/s/atlantic/20110519/wl_atlantic/strausskahnindictednewyorkgrandjury37936_1
    .
    Sadly it appears that Herbie doesn’t know what he’s talking about.

  • YugoStiglitz

    So now there’s the issue of the DNA evidence. Ambassador Murray, humbly and respectably, what technology do you think exists that puts DSK’s DNA on the employee’s clothing? Is the NYC crime lab now part of the “fit-up” against DSK? What could the individual employees possibly get out of taking part in that crime?

    • craig Post author

      What a silly point. Monica Lewinsky had Bill Clinton’s sperm on her dress, but it wasn’t rape. I presume it is sperm – though I imagine that if you clean somebody’s room you will undoubtedly get microscopic traces of other kinds of DNA on your clothes.

  • Jon

    Herbie, I am not asking you to try him. I’m simply asking whether the usual rules should apply to him. You did say that rapists should be punished, but given that you said “all they had to do was put a female within sight of him and let nature take its course”, I felt you might be excusing rape, so long as it is done by good people. I do feel you’ve avoided the question, as I think does Dreoilin, but I’ll stop pressing now.
    .
    I agree that there is a trial-by-media in these cases though, which is disheartening indeed. That said, he can at least afford good lawyers, and the case will be in the public eye, so I remain hopeful that his trial will remain fair. I am not certain that his case has been expedited because of his policy ideas, but as I said before, it is a possibility. We will have to wait and see.

  • Herbie

    If someone says that rapists should be punished then that should be clear enough to any reasonable person.

    The problem is that your specific question was poorly phrased.

    Your question made an assumption of guilt prior to charge. And it doesn’t work that way.

    Dreoilin is wrong because, as she’s demonstrated above, she doesn’t understand the difference either. The issue is not, as she assumes “has DSK been charged”?

    It is very specifically should he be charged if we think him guilty? And that’s not how it works. People are charged when it is thought there is as case to answer, not because we think them guilty. It may seem a subtle distinction to you but it’s a very important distinction which goes to the heart of due process.

  • Herbie

    Hi Jon

    Here’s an article extolling the virtues of Hillary’s feminism:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/cifamerica/2011/jan/16/hillary-clinton-feminist-foreign-policy

    You haven’t addressed the issue of how quotas for women advance the cause of feminism as you describe it.

    These sexist taglines, as you describe them, are one of the ways in which feminism is incorporated. It’s not just something you can ignore.

    On Harriet Harman, she’s s self-described feminist with a whole lot of female supporters in the party, but again she just looks like another neo con. You can’t easily dismiss this either.

    So in your terms feminism is a failed project. It hasn’t achieved what you want. But it’s worse than that. Feminism has been incorporated as a servant of corporate power, as we can see with the powerful feminists above and indeed we can see in mass media when issues such as the DSK or Assange affair come to light.

    It’s clear that identity politics just doesn’t deliver the goods.

    What unites people is not their gender nor their ethnicity nor their nation, but their common humanity and desire to make some sort of life for themselves.

    Feminism and all the other “isms” have succeeded only in dividing people, which of course suits the banksters just fine.

  • dreoilin

    Herbie,
    Both DSK and the chambermaid know the truth. They know whether it was attempted rape or not. I believe Jon’s question is a simple one. If you could see into the chambermaid’s mind, or DSK’s mind, and IF you did that, and IF you knew that an attempted rape HAD been committed by DSK in this case, should he have been charged?
    .
    Or do you perhaps think that given his status and his work, he should have been shielded and protected by those in power?
    .
    You wrote further up the page, “I’m all for the sovereignty of the individual etc, but there are much greater issues which affect us all and which ultimately transcend any individual damage to this woman”
    .
    This is why the question needs a straight answer.

  • dreoilin

    You also wrote, Herbie, “He may have actively assisted in his demise, but that in itself is not enough for him to now be in the position he’s in.”
    .
    Why not?

  • Herbie

    Dreoilin writes:
    .

    “You also wrote, Herbie, “He may have actively assisted in his demise, but that in itself is not enough for him to now be in the position he’s in.”
    .
    Why not?”
    .

    For all the reasons that Naomi Wolf gave in her article and all the reasons I’ve given as to how the banksters protect their mates.

  • dreoilin

    Herbie,
    Both DSK and the chambermaid know the truth. They know whether it was attempted rape or not. I believe Jon’s question is a simple one. If you could see into the chambermaid’s mind, or DSK’s mind, and IF you did that, and IF you knew that an attempted rape HAD been committed by DSK in this case, should he have been charged?
    .
    Or do you perhaps think that given his status and his work, he should have been shielded and protected by those in power?
    .
    You wrote further up the page, “I’m all for the sovereignty of the individual etc, but there are much greater issues which affect us all and which ultimately transcend any individual damage to this woman”
    .
    This is why the question needs a straight answer.

    ——————

    and you’re still avoiding the question.

  • Herbie

    Dreolin
    .
    Jon’s question was not a simple one. Much of what has been going on here concerns the unusual process, as Naomi Wolf points out.
    .
    If someone simply asks the generic question, “should rapists be punished” then the answer is simple. It’s yes.
    .
    That is not what was asked though.
    .
    Because rape is an emotive issue much of the discussion focusses in on the victim and we lose sight of the unusual process in this case. And that suits those who wish to hide that unusual process.
    .
    But as again Naomi Wolf points out, this case is nothing like a normal rape procedural at all. Far from it!.
    .
    The banksters win in the distraction and the NY authorities get to pretend that they take rape seriously, when the Rape Crisis centre claims that ordinarily they do not.

  • dreoilin

    My question is a simple one, Herbie, and you’re avoiding it like the plague.
    .
    If you had been a fly on the wall, and IF you knew that an attempted rape HAD been committed by DSK in this case, should he have been charged?
    .
    Or do you perhaps think that given his status and his work, he should have been shielded and protected by those in power?
    .
    ————————
    .
    I note that you’re refusing to answer. Bye Herbie

  • Herbie

    Dreoilin
    .
    If someone repeatedly says to you that “rapists should be punished” then a reasonable person will understand what’s being said. It’s quite clear.
    .
    It’s your pretence not to understand that’s the problem here, and that has happened a number of times in your interventions.
    .
    Your talk about reading people’s minds indicates just how abstracted from any discussion of this issue you are. You’re simply trying to distract from the unusual nature of the process involving DSK.
    .
    And that’s of course my point about how so called feminists serve the interests of banksters and neo cons, unwittingly or not. Your inability to address the issues in the way that an intelligent observer like Naomi Wolf does is because you seem only to think in black and white, and sadly the world is not like that at all.

  • Jon

    @Herbie – I might have phrased it better, but it ought to be clear from my posts that I know the difference between ‘case to answer’ and ‘guilty’. But I maintain, as does Dreoilin, that several times you appeared to excuse rape by a good man if bad men would have got away with it. But, to your credit, you’ve given a simple “yes” to “should rapists be punished” – I’ll have to settle for that.
    .
    I don’t have time to do justice to your valid questions about feminism in general, but hopefully I will this week. But:
    .
    > as we can see with the powerful feminists above
    .
    This might be the cause of our differences here: I just don’t think they are feminists, as I’ve said repeatedly before. Even if someone calls themselves a feminist, it is not necessarily true. Cherie Booth insisted to a journalist that she and her husband were socialists – and yet their kind of “socialism” has nothing to do with the vision of Tony Benn and others.
    .
    I sense you’re keen to lob out feminism at any opportunity, because you don’t like it, and so you’ll happily accept Harman/Clinton’s view that they are feminists in order to discredit the movement. I just don’t think that’s fair on women who are *genuinely* opposed to discrimination, and who are fighting for a better deal for women.
    .
    More on this when I get a moment… 🙂

  • Herbie

    What do Ken Clarke, Naomi Wolf, Laurie Penny’s mum and Herbie have in common?
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    Well, Ken Clarke had an argument with some very stupid sloganising people about rape law.
    .
    Laurie Penny’s lawyer mum had an hour long argument with sloganiste Lit grad Laurie Penny about rape law.
    .
    And see here poor old Naomi Wolf despairing at ever getting into this discussion:
    .
    http://www.democracynow.org/2010/12/20/naomi_wolf_vs_jaclyn_friedman_a

  • angrysoba

    Herbie, if DSK did it (i.e rape) should he go to jail?
    .
    If yes, and he did do it, doesn’t that mean that all your tantrums about “banksters” and feminism turn out to be irrelevant?
    .
    (This doesn’t mean that the two things aren’t subjects in their own right but different subjects whereas rape is the real subject here and you’ve spent all your time trying to change it.)

  • Herbie

    Angry

    “Herbie, if DSK did it (i.e rape) should he go to jail?”
    .
    My view is that anyone who is convicted of rape should be punished according to what is deemed appropriate to those judging the case. Neither I, nor you and certainly not Dreoilin are in any position to determine this specific case. That’s obvious to all but the most stupid of people.
    .
    “If yes, and he did do it, doesn’t that mean that all your tantrums about “banksters” and feminism turn out to be irrelevant?”
    .
    Of course not. It’s the strange process in this case that makes it stand out. Rape is common. This process is highly unusual. That’s Naomi Wolf’s argument, and it’s mine too. What feminism does, and it’s probably better to call it a naive sloganising feminism, is distract from the unusual process in this case.
    .
    “(This doesn’t mean that the two things aren’t subjects in their own right but different subjects whereas rape is the real subject here and you’ve spent all your time trying to change it.)”
    .
    If rape is so common, and it is, why is this case so special and worthy of screeds of column inches across the planet?
    .
    It’s not as if DSK is a well known celeb. He’s not. Certainly not in the US, and indeed not in most of Europe either.
    .
    What makes this case so highly reportable?
    .
    You don’t appear to have explained why that is so. And yet it’s the very unusual nature of the process in this case that raise so many questions about it.
    .
    The only comparable recent case is that of Assange and we know what that was about. We know too that DSK was doing things at the IMF that the banksters didn’t like.

  • Herbie

    Curiouser and curiouser
    .
    Despite many press accounts over the past number of days reporting that DSK’s DNA has been found on the maid’s clothing, it now appears that the NYPD are denying being the source of this information.
    .
    There is in fact no named source in any of the press reports, nor even any named authority.
    .
    It appears that these news reports can all be traced to one French outlet, Atlantico.fr who themselves have no named source, and they ain’t saying where they got the info from other than unnamed French sources.

    http://slatest.slate.com/posts/2011/05/24/strauss_kahn_dna_dsk_sample_matches_semen_found_on_hotel_maid_s_.html

    This is Atlantico’s site

    http://www.atlantico.fr/

  • Herbie

    Looks as though someone is making things up.
    .
    Now, why would that be?

    New York police have denied reports of finding DNA traces from Dominique Strauss-Kahn, the former IMF chief, on a maid’s clothes.

    “Investigators had so far given “no result and no information” about the DNA test results, they said on Tuesday, following news reports earlier that the DNA tests had given a positive result.

    A spokesman from the New York Police Department denied that the results from the genetic testing had been released.

    On Monday a spokeswoman from the prosecutor’s office would not comment on the report saying there would be “nothing until the trial.””

    http://english.aljazeera.net/news/americas/2011/05/2011524433952134.html
    .
    But despite this, the casual and even interested observer will have been deluded into thinking they’ve got DSK bang to rights.
    .
    And that’s of course how these smears work.

  • Herbie

    I was just thinking about what Naomi Wolf said about the photographing of DSK naked being unusual. Initially I thought it was just for humiliation along with the frequent strip searching the NYPD boasted about.
    .
    Then I thought that if their case is that DSK presented himself naked to the maid then she could reasonably be expected to describe what he looks like naked. Any special identifying features etc.
    .
    What better way to do this than show her photographs of him naked.

  • YugoStiglitz

    How does Naomi Wolf know anything about law enforcement in NYC?

    Atlantico.fr might have been the first to break the DNA story, but it was independently confirmed by other media outlets. Read your own link.

  • Herbie

    Hi Larry

    There’s no independent confirmation of the DNA story, yet it’s still all over media.
    .
    Everyone is relying on unnamed sources.
    .
    The only real possible source (NYPD) is saying that they haven’t released such information to anyone.
    .
    So, a classic smear.
    .
    I also read some drivel about his “pals” contacting her family in Africa, again totally unnamed sources.
    .
    That’s the very interesting thing about this whole case. Just how much smearing is going on, and why. No one outside of France and the financial world, had ever heard of this bloke before the whole thing broke. Not normal at all.
    .
    When the banksters are out to get someone the media dogs are let off the leash. Simple as that, though they may just have pushed their luck too far on this one.

  • angrysoba

    “Neither I, nor you and certainly not Dreoilin are in any position to determine this specific case.”
    .
    Yet, you have been opining long and hard on this specific case since day one. I am not sure how you get a dispensation even while denying to everyone including yourself and saying Dreoilin is especially unqualified to comment. Why would that be?
    .
    Ah! Is it because of this?
    .
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LS37SNYjg8w

  • dreoilin

    Lagarde would bring a French vision of the importance of social spending, plus her desire for a “multipolar” world in which China and other developing nations played a greater role.
    .
    “Lagarde would be very much in the continuity of what Strauss-Kahn did,” said Gilles Moec, senior European economist with Deutsche Bank.
    .
    “What’s interesting is that she would bring those French values, which are probably what’s needed, but also an understanding of the Anglo-Saxon approach.”
    .
    Lagarde appears to have enough support in Europe, the United States and China to handily defeat any potential challengers to head the IMF.
    .
    http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/05/25/us-imf-lagarde-idUSTRE74O2E220110525
    .
    Interesting.

  • Herbie

    Angry

    Opining on the inconsistencies of a legal case is not quite the same thing as determining guilt or innocence.

    I know and appreciate that, as indeed most worldly adults do.

    Neither you nor Dreoilin seem to understand the basics of due process.

  • Herbie

    Dreoilin
    .
    This is much more interesting and indeed a far more objective analysis of the situation:
    .
    http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xirhp3_dumas-says-strauss-kahn-was-best-man-to-get-bailouts_news
    .
    Gilles Moec whom you quote above is a Deutsche banker whose employer’s interests lie in ensuring that DSK’s approach will now cease.
    .
    He has been quoted extensively across media which itself is even more interesting than your post.
    .
    Lagarde quite simply doesn’t have the economic nous to challenge the interests of the banksters. That was DSK’s skill, an unusual skill as head of the IMF because previously his post had been held by economic amateurs. That suited the banksters and it looks very much like they’ll get their way with a return to a puppet head.

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