Beavering Away 233


I am sorry there have been so few posts lately. I am terrifically busy. Yesterday I was up before dawn and back after midnight, having spent the day in Wales. Regular readers will realise that I am working on something I shan’t be able to blog about until it has come to fruition. I was most amused recently by a commenter who called me an “armchair critic.” I shall be in Germany, Brazil, Afghanistan and Ghana in the next two months.

Also I continue to dig into the extraordinary case of Adam Werritty and just why he was holding all those meetings with Matthew Gould, while Gould was Private Secretary to Miliband and then while he was Private Secretary to Hague, and then while he was UK Ambassador to Israel. I have new information, but as I am working on it with someone else quasi-mainstream I shan’t break it before they do. It is a story that really ought to be a television documentary, but given the mainstream media blackout, I was considering whether a podcast format might be a good way to get it further out there. But I need someone who can film it in a reasonably professional way, cutting in pictures, document extracts and interviews in a manner that looks good.

Any ideas or volunteers out there?


233 thoughts on “Beavering Away

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  • Tony12

    Dear Craig,

    I might be able to help. We two studio cameras here and video editing. What do you need and where? We are in W. Middlesex.

  • TFS

    Off Topic:

    Didn’t the investigation into uk torture complicity just get sidelined ad infinitum?

  • John Goss

    Keep digging on Werritty. The man is an arse. Can’t help with podcast since no knowledge. But I want to see it when produced.

  • Mary

    I think Hammond is more of a threat to peace than Fox.
    .
    Here we go.

    .
    24 January 2012 Last updated at 11:35
    .
    Iran escalation ‘could see UK forces sent to Gulf’
    HMS Argyll was part of a US-led carrier group which passed through the Strait of Hormuz
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    An escalation of a dispute with Iran could see Britain sending military reinforcements to the Gulf, Defence Secretary Philip Hammond has said.
    .
    Sending HMS Argyll as part of an international warship flotilla through the Strait of Hormuz on Sunday was a “clear signal” to Tehran, he said.
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    Iran has threatened to close the strait in retaliation for sanctions against its oil exports.
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    In total, 35% of the world’s tanker-borne oil passes through the strait.
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    Asked if more resources could be sent to the region, Mr Hammond said: “The UK has a contingent capability to reinforce that presence should at any time it be considered necessary to do so.”
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    He was speaking at a London press conference following the annual round of talks between UK and Australian foreign and defence ministers
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    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-16701013

    .
    Gillard is joining the embargo on Iranian oil btw.

  • Mark Golding - Children of Iraq

    Thanks for the link Mary – HMS Argyll and a re-armed HMS Westminster shortly to take part in the plot to create an ‘incident’ in the Straits. I believe both ships have Farsi translators on-board.
    .
    HMS Westminster was involved in the evacuation of important British nationals from Libya, a country on the brink of civil war. Why? Because the NTC is corrupt, designed to foster America and Britain’s interests and not the interests of the Libyan people, they made that mistake in Iraq.
    .
    While Russia supplies arms to Syria, India and China are exchanging gold for Iranian oil, circumventing EU sanctions and Russia is blessed with more demands for her energy resources as a result. Good!
    .
    Meanwhile Iran is feverishly building S-300 anti-missile systems from Russian blueprints.
    .
    Gold is achieving dominance over the corrupt financial systems; a cancerous growth of market manipulation that has eroded the normal banking systems and now feeds the elite war mongers plans and coffers.
    .
    Thus we move nearer to another war, a nuclear war that must rid our world of the greedy bastards eyeing dominance, control, suppression of freedoms, police states, surveillance, DNA at birth and biometric implants.
    .
    OK so you think I am a nutter? – notice how ‘Occupy’ has been savagely put down? Notice how the people of Bahrain, Saudi, Egypt, Yemen et al. have been denied freedom? Notice the ‘divide and rule’ in Libya, Afghanistan and Iraq – the murder of scientists in Iran, the use of cyber-terror and impending laws to restrict Internet knowledge?
    .
    I say prepare, prepare, prepare for the long haul to death or liberation.

  • mrjohn

    I edit video for a living but I live in Tokyo.

    If you want a professional looking job doing you need to go to a professional. If your information is sensitive I’d stick with people you know personally. You might get lucky and get someone who will work pro bono, but most pros know pro bono jobs tend to spiral out of control and end up taking a huge amount of time. The discipline of working within a budget and to a schedule always gives a better end product.

    Your first job is to come up with your overall scenario, and a storyboard. Simplest format, introduction outlining what the piece will be about, the main body, your interviews & documents, and your conclusion. Set an overall time you are aiming for, and I’d recommend keeping it as short, focussed and concise as you can. Avoid “what if”,”could it be” “wouldn’t it mean that” etc

    For filming at least you need at least a decent cameraman, lights man & sound guy, and someone to direct. Might seem odd to need a director for something like this but someone has to have the overview of the whole piece so each specialist can stay focussed on their job. Make sure your interviews are focussed, the interviewee has seen the questions first and had time to prepare answers. The more source material you have the more time you have to spend watching it, and time goes by in multiples when you are editing.

    You then need to edit down your interviews, add in your documents, and probably add some voice over, which means access to a decent narration booth, or at least somewhere quiet and a decent quality field recorder. A good editor can do all this (I do it all the time), but be warned, editing can take a long time,depending on the material 3 minutes of video can take anything from and hour to 7 hours to finish. Normal process is to do a rough cut first, no frills, line up your material, watch it, decide if it makes sense, cut out the chaff.

    Avoid the trap of being sucked into your own little world, you know what it is all about, it will make sense to you but it may not make sense to others. So take a break, sleep on it, come back and watch with fresh eyes. Best of all find someone you know and trust to watch it and give you an honest appraisal. Don’t take their criticism personally.

  • Azra

    @Mary, Australia’s oil import from Iran is almost nothing! so as usual they are kissing butts of American friends.

  • Jon

    > I shall be in Germany, Brazil, Afghanistan and Ghana in the next two months.
    .
    Nice to see your work in Ghana is still on-going. But this nosey-parker is curious as to what you’re doing in those other countries!

  • mrjohn

    I edit video for a living, but I live in Tokyo.

    I have found pro bono jobs always spiral out of control and produce sub standard results. The discipline of working to a budget and schedule always makes for a better end product. If you have no money you can try willing volunteers, but it will cost you and them time. You might get lucky and find a hands on director type person, but good cameramen, lightsmen, sound guys and editors don’t work for free, though they are sometimes volunteered to do so by someone above who enjoys warm feeling of donating other peoples time, skill and resources.

    The time spent editing will increase by multiples of the amount of material you have. Generally the better prepared you are before you start, the quicker the edit will be. Every minute of material is at least a minute to import, a minute to watch, a minute to check, a minute to export, a minute to check again, so one minute becomes five without any decision making, colour correction, sound syncing, titling etc etc etc. You can spend an hour on three minutes of video, or you can spend 20 hours.

    Your first job is to write a scenario, then storyboard it : introduction, what the film is about, main body, (your interviews and evidence), and your conclusion. Aim to be concise, enough detail to convince, not so much to confuse. Avoid the “what if” format so beloved of the tin foil Mayan Inca Atlantis style of “documentary”, but you need an overall point of view, your argument, be brutal in cutting anything, however interesting, which does not relate to the main point.

    You will probably need a voice over to hold it all together. In this case I guess you will write your script after you have conducted & reviewed your interviews. Narration is a lot harder than it seems, if you are not a pro it is hard to read someone else’s words and make them sound natural.

    Make sure your interviewees have seen the questions before you film, and keep the interviews brief, the physical comfort of the subject is important, don’t keep them waiting, set up, use a stand in to get the light, sound, angles and focus set, then have them sit down & do the interview. If you are doing a Q&A format try not to talk over them, harder than you think when people need response to keep talking. Smiling, nodding and gesturing helps. Keep the interview short and focussed, the more material you have, the more you have to edit, the longer it all takes.

    Avoid being sucked into your own little world, the more you edit the material the more it makes sense to you and the less it makes sense to everyone else, it’s always good to have a fresh pair of eyes watch it at intervals. Do one rough cut, line up your material, watch it, take a break, watch it again, edit it down, watch it again, get some sleep, watch it again the next day, if it still makes sense polish it. Don’t get emotionally attached to edited sequences just because they took time to get “right”.

    You can spend months working on things like this, but generally the best results are achieved when you do something within a set time frame, and have a third party whose opinion you trust to watch it dispassionately at intervals, two or three times during the editing process.

  • Stevie P

    As editors and camera operators have already offered their services.. I am a musician and composer who has a good audio rig and would be willing to contribute for free. So, should you need any kind of soundtrack, ambient or otherwise, please let me know. I can compose, mix and master audio files – three jobs for the price of nowt as I know this is worth it. I’ve done documentaries, short films, jingles and audiobooks. Mr John above makes some great points.

  • doug scorgie

    Mary
    “I think Hammond is more of a threat to peace than Fox.”
    I don’t think it matters who the defence secretary is; the plans for war, I believe, were well advanced before Fox resigned and are now set in motion. Britain is playing its part by sending the navy into the Gulf. We also have about 10,000 troops in Afghanistan plus fighter jets.

    An increase of US forces from 10,000+ to 25,000+ in Kuwait; battleships and aircraft carriers in the area; thousands of US troops, aircraft, helicopters and missiles now in Israel for a pre-planned military “exercise” with the IDF.
    It is highly likely that some Arab states like Saudi-Arabia will also join in with the military hardware supplied by the US.

    Also the Russians think that the US and its allies are going to engage militarily in Syria, not because of concern for protesters but because of Syria’s close ties to Iran. (Daily Telegraph 12/01/12).

    So war with Iran seems a certainty now. I believe Israel will fire the first shot, maybe after a false flag operation. This would allow Obama to claim that the US was dragged into the war and had no choice but defend Israel.

    I just hope I’m wrong but if not I hope that our Prime Minister, Cameron and the rest; Fox, Werrity, Gould, Hammond and Hague are held accountable for what transpires.

    Another thing that concerns me is the possibility of an all out attack on Gaza by Israel (while the Iran conflict gets all the media attention) in order to eliminate Hamas and cleanse the strip of Palestinians and annex the land for Jewish only settlers.

  • Azra

    Just out : Indian ‘India to buy Iran oil in gold not dollars’
    and China is to follow suit, this expect to push the price of Gold up and dollor down. God help Iran, the war seems inevitable now.. This is something which USA would fight to death for , to keep dollar as the world currency for trade.

    http://www.presstv.com/detail/222857.html

  • ingo

    Doug, agree with most, but a possible/likely attack on Ghaza to cleanse it of Palestinians would surely be a Ghaza Holocaust, would it not?
    Re taking the Ghaza strip for its gas reserves off the coast would be another likely explanation of such deadly folly.
    israel is harrassing hamas all over the place, arresting MP and long standing campaigners within the grounds and independent territory of the International Red cross in jerusalem and at road blocks, anything to stall the impending unity of the two factions.

  • Mary

    Doug. Hope you are wrong about the build up but fear you are not. I meant that Hammond is more gabby than Fox and seems to be more than willing to be the voice of Cameron et al not just on this but on Libya and Syria too. A creep. The great British public haven’t got a clue what is going on nor seem to care. It’s the price of petrol that is newsworthy today.

    Ingo. They have already had their greater shoah (holocaust) on Gaza, ie Cast Lead, as promised by Vilnai. Total annihilation is what they want but would they dare?

  • Fedup

    “@Mary, Australia’s oil import from Iran is almost nothing! so as usual they are kissing butts of American friends.”
    ,
    I am afraid, the butts they kiss are closer to home, those colonies as yet have not learnt how to tack an independent course.
    ,
    This ought to clarify the point Their speech was probably faxed to them from No. 10.

  • crab

    Craig – some of your productivity tips would be great to read sometime. But i suspect you are an industrious one because you take care of traction and momentum ~intuitively.
    .
    This just up – “Julian Asssange to host own tv show”
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2012/jan/24/julian-assange-host-tv-show
    .
    Tony12 are you responsible for the noisy campaign of TonyOPMOC drunken spleen posts? – His help would likely not be free – of more creepily unrestrained woozey ramblings.

  • nuid

    “thousands of US troops, aircraft, helicopters and missiles now in Israel for a pre-planned military “exercise” with the IDF” — Doug Scorgie
    .
    But that’s been called off. (So did they go there at all?)

  • Yonatan

    Azra wrote: “This is something which USA would fight to death for, to keep dollar as the world currency for trade.”

    I think China has been slowly reducing its dollar holding (and buying gold?) for some time and the only thing that has kept to dollar is some strange buying in London. I hope it isn’t the UK Gov buying some soon-to-be useless paper.

    If someone knows more about this, perhaps the could clarify what is going on?

  • Mary

    ‘Iran sanctions, provocation for war’
    .

    Press TV has interviewed Jeff Gates, author of Guilt by Association from California about the oil embargo against Iran that Ron Paul the US presidential candidate terms an act of war and its possible effect on world oil prices. What follows is an approximate transcript of the interview.

    http://presstv.com/detail/222810.html

  • nuid

    From http://www.debka.com/article/21673/
    .
    “India is the first buyer of Iranian oil to agree to pay for its purchases in gold instead of the US dollar, debkafile’s intelligence and Iranian sources report exclusively. Those sources expect China to follow suit. India and China take about one million barrels per day, or 40 percent of Iran’s total exports of 2.5 million bpd. Both are superpowers in terms of gold assets.
    .
    By trading in gold, New Delhi and Beijing enable Tehran to bypass the upcoming freeze on its central bank’s assets and the oil embargo which the European Union’s foreign ministers agreed to impose Monday, Jan. 23. The EU currently buys around 20 percent of Iran’s oil exports.
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    The vast sums involved in these transactions are expected, furthermore, to boost the price of gold and depress the value of the dollar on world markets.
    Iran’s second largest customer after China, India purchases around $12 billion a year’s worth of Iranian crude, or about 12 percent of its consumption. Delhi is to execute its transactions, according to our sources, through two state-owned banks: the Calcutta-based UCO Bank, whose board of directors is made up of Indian government and Reserve Bank of India representatives; and Halk Bankasi (Peoples Bank), Turkey’s seventh largest bank which is owned by the government.
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    An Indian delegation visited Tehran last week to discuss payment options in view of the new sanctions. The two sides were reported to have agreed that payment for the oil purchased would be partly in yen and partly in rupees. The switch to gold was kept dark.
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    India thus joins China in opting out of the US-led European sanctions against Iran’s international oil and financial business. Turkey announced publicly last week that it would not adhere to any sanctions against Iran’s nuclear program unless they were imposed by the United Nations Security Council.
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    The EU decision of Monday banned the signing of new oil contracts with Iran at once, while phasing out existing transactions by July 1, 2012, when the European embargo, like the measure enforced by the United States, becomes total. The European foreign ministers also approved a freeze on the assets of the Central Bank of Iran which handles all the country’s oil transactions.
    However, the damage those sanctions cause the Iranian economy will be substantially cushioned by the oil deals to be channeled through Turkish and Indian state banks. China for its part has declared its opposition to sanctions against Iran.
    .
    debkafile’s intelligence sources disclose that Tehran has set up alternative financial mechanisms with China and Russia for getting paid for its oil in currencies other than US dollars. Both Beijing and Moscow are keeping the workings of those mechanisms top secret.”
    .
    ———
    .
    In other words, the US admin must be shitting itself (and getting very angry). Losing its special currency status will/would tank the US economy.

  • doug scorgie

    Nuid
    “But that’s been called off. (So did they go there at all?)”
    Yes looks like it’s been postponed for a few months. I don’t know if any US troops are in Israel at the moment but US military hardware has been stockpiling in Israel since 2009.

  • Mark Golding - Children of Iraq

    Good post Nuid – Alternate sources gives me confidence in my own intelligence.
    .
    btw Azra – sorry for the sat. install delay. I am waiting for information and then need to test this week before I can write the install and setup instructions.

  • writeon

    I’ve always felt that Obama was plucked out of obscurity and elevated to the Whitehouse, precisely because his ‘face’ could get away with an attack on Iran, something yet another; dumb, inarticulate, grey-haired, old, white dude, in the oval office would have extreme difficulty pulling off.
    .
    Will the Americans really provoke the Iranians into starting a war? This scenario is frighteningly similar to the way the US forced Japan into war by cutting off its supply of raw materials, especially oil, so the Japanese were under siege and had the choice of slow, economic, strangulation, or risking everything by attacking the US in the desparate hope that they could fight the US to a standstill and negotiate some kind of peace on favourable terms. Unfortunately the Japanese underestimated the ruthlessness of the Americans and their desire to expand even further across the Pacific into Asia, which brings us neatly back to the present and the prospect of war with Iran.

    .
    The US sees Iran as a vital route into Central Asia and the vast energy reserves it contains. A New Iran would form a collosal wedge of enormous strategic value between Russia and China and weaken both of them, in preparation for new wars of ‘liberation’ aimed at them and changing their regimes.

    The vital question for world peace is, will China and Russia simply allow the US to destroy Iran in preparation for what they must know is a coming attack on them? Can they really afford to let Iran, which functions as a buffer and protects them from direct conflict with the US, go down, or will they be forced to step in to protect Iran and their own vital national security interests? Which is where the WW3 nightmare comes into play.

  • Azra

    I was in contact with Iran today, apparently lots of people are writing to the Oil Minister asking him to stop exporting oil to EU, even if Iran has to pay a penalty for breaking of its contract.
    Some are calling for stopping any negotiations with the inspectors too. I don’t think in the west the idiot governments realize that it is now the matter of national pride for Iranian to support the government even those who are in opposition.

  • Azra

    @Mark Golding : No Problem! I am off to Iran soon in any case, so any satellite installation will have to wait until I come back

  • Anon

    “OK so you think I am a nutter? – notice how ‘Occupy’ has been savagely put down?”

    I agree with Angrysoba – if you want to see savage put downs might I suggest you look at Syria, where Assad among other attrocities has even shelled a Palestiniann refugee camp.

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