Decade of Dissent 720


It is ten years since I ended my FCO career by going on the Today programme and blowing the whistle on CIA/MI6 complicity in torture. It was on my 46th birthday, and I was in my second year as an Ambassador and my seventh as a top Whitehall civil servant, a member of the Senior Civil Service.

Looking back now, what is most striking are the blatant lies by the FCO that they were not obtaining intelligence from torture. As the BBC reported:

In one he claimed MI6 had used information passed on to it by the CIA but originally obtained in Uzbek torture cells – something strongly denied by the Foreign Office.

I do not think there is a single person in public life or social media nowadays who would not accept that the FCO were simply lying. Jack Straw was blatantly to lie about it to parliament. But ten years ago the public and media knew much less than they know now. Nobody outside secret circles had ever heard the words extraordinary rendition. It was a year later – May 2005 – before the New York Times revealed the CIA was sending people to Uzbekistan to be tortured, precisely as I had stated.

It sounds incredible, but in October 2004 many people believed it was Craig Murray who was a liar, not Jack Straw. Again I do not think there is a single individual today who does not understand that Jack Straw was lying through his teeth. But back in 2004 life was hard for me.

After going on the Today programme I went on the run, in fear for my life. I am not paranoid, remember David Kelly. I first stayed with my old friend Andy Myles in Edinburgh, then I think Chief Executive of the Scottish Liberal Democrats. He was phoned the next morning by the FCO. When he denied knowledge of my whereabouts, they not only said they knew I was staying with him, they said which bedroom I was sleeping in. Ten years ago today I was hiding in Aviemore in the house of my old friend Dominic.

That was the start of a decade as a dissident where I have devoted my life to exposing, and trying to counter, the evil of the neo-conservative policy pursued by our political class at the behest of the corporations who fund them. I have suffered a huge loss in money, status and most of the other normal aspirations. But what I have gained is invaluable. I have respect and love, while Blair and Straw will forever be despised.


720 thoughts on “Decade of Dissent

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  • MJ

    “the removal of the Taleban and Al Quaeda from the govt of Afghanistan”

    Not to mention the Wicked Witch of the North and the Big Bad Wolf.

  • Ben E. Geserit Muad'Dib Further Confounding Gender Speculators

    We removed Saddam. See how it works out? Baathists and Tallyban still working their magic.

  • Habbabkuk (la vita è bella)

    MJ

    ““for some, it was a resounding success”

    Yes. Not only did the mining and pipeline companies get what they wanted, opium production was restored to record levels and the taliban left too weak to be able to do much about it.”
    ____________________

    Always good to hear your insights, MJ. I’m so interested to hear your thoughts that I always have the urge to hear more of them.

    Could you therefore flesh out the above by telling us

    1/. what exactly did the mining and pipeline companies “want”? Once you answered that

    2/ could you tell us if they “got” it.

    3/. are oil and gas flowing through Afghanistan to the West?

    4/. whether the Taliban’s rebellion against the Karzai govt was in part motivated by a desire to see opium production levels decrease? And

    5/. whether you believe that should the Taliban eventually take over again in Afghanistan they will take vigorous action to wipe out the production of poppy opium.

    Thanks for sharing.

  • Republicofscotland

    This Thursday, Jackie (Two dinners) Baillie, will be asking the questions for the Scottish Labour branch, at First Minister’s Questions at Holyrood. I can hardly wait.

  • YouKnowMyName

    Habb: “Could you therefore tell us who are those “all accounts” you cite?”

    My source for this was OSINT ( open source intelligence ) as ever. It’s almost irrelevant to explain this to your group as I believe your team will have all the currently available (not yet deleted) references in front of you.

    I remember that I read a contemporaneous account of the dreaded Stasi second in command’s visit to the USA as it happened, in about 2004, it was written by a female US Government official. I’ll have to look her up!

    I found her name, Charlotte Iserbyt, you can check her as an original source, I’m sure.

    You’ll also no doubt be aware, through OSINT or just INT, of the U.S. Department of State Daily Press Briefing #87, 1997-06-09:

    He {Wolfe(sic)} was the deputy minister of state security for East Germany. He was the head of the ministry’s foreign espionage branch. He actively aided and abetted and fostered international and state-supported terrorism when he was an East German government official.

    As the number 2 person in Stasi and the head of the espionage branch, he was absolutely in the decision-making channel. There’s no question about that.

    By his own admission, he participated in determining the ministry’s policy and goals and he’s, therefore, ineligible.

    We, in the State Department, do not believe it is appropriate to give him a waiver from Section 212(a)(3)(b) because we think it is inadvisable for someone who spent his entire career as an opponent of free German, West Germany, as an opponent of the German people, and someone who is anti-American and trying to bring down our government and sponsor terrorist attacks against us, why would we give him a visa?

    So, he is not coming to the United States. He can write his best-selling books, but he won’t be able to enjoy the United States throughout the rest of his life if we have anything to do with it.

    If you want a random link that also mentions Nazis & Nazism in context then this is quite a nice one http://www.newworker.org/ncptrory/1984.htm

  • Mary

    Where is Karzai?

    ~~~

    Obama invites new Afghan leaders to White House

    October 27, 2014

    Reuters

    KABUL – US President Barack Obama, keen to reset relations with Afghanistan that soured under longtime president Hamid Karzai, has invited the leaders of Afghanistan’s new unity government to visit the White House early next year. The new Afghan leadership comes at a crucial time as American combat troops draw down after 13 years and a remaining US force of about 10,000 shifts to a support role for Afghan security forces taking over the fight against Taliban insurgents.

    Afghan President Ashraf Ghani and the country’s new CE, Abdullah Abdullah, spoke with Obama via video conference on Wednesday night, a White House statement said. Obama congratulated the two former rivals on forming their unity govt, which was sworn in last month after a prolonged election dispute in which both candidates claimed victory.

    He reiterated an invitation to the U.S. for both leaders that was made in a letter soon after the government was formed. Obama discussed ways to strengthen the Afghan police and army as well as budget reforms to shore up the cash-strapped Kabul government’s finances.

    http://nation.com.pk/international/27-Oct-2014/obama-invites-new-afghan-leaders-to-white-house

  • nigel

    In my opinion no one wants the job a poisoned chalice of snipers and sycophants jostling for position, within the Scottish Branch, whoever is foolish enough to take the position will be soundly thrashed by the SNP in 2016, then they’ll also have to resign in humiliation, no wonder the snake Anas Sarwar isn’t throwing his hat into the ring.

    Republic
    Daphne Broons lack of talent in all departments was PRECISELY the reason the leaders in london engineered her leadership. They were looking for ANOTHER individual who could be reliably told to do their bidding at all times. The last thing they wanted was an individual with looks, intellect and personality who had a mind of their own and whose first priority was for the wellbeing of the Scottish peoples!

    To be fair to the labour party (and I hate to be fair to the mob who shit and pissed all over the poorest and most vulnerable Scots who were so deluded as to think they were voting for a party who actually give a toss about them) if either the lib dums or the tories had been in power, they would have acted in exactly the same way towards the Scottish peoples.

    So, I will not be speculating as to the future “leader” of this northern branch office of the london labour party may be, whoever emerges will continue to act against the very Scots they are supposed to represent. I, for one, will not waste a nanosecond in wondering what tenth rater and utter utter nonentity we will be saddled with!

  • Habbabkuk (la vita è bella)

    YouKnowMyName

    In response to your claim that Markus Wolf worked for the US on its “Total Information Awareness” project, I asked you the following:

    “Could you therefore tell us who are those “all accounts” you cite?” .

    Your reply, at 17h52, is disappointing. You say:

    “My source for this was OSINT ( open source intelligence ) as ever. It’s almost irrelevant to explain this to your group as I believe your team will have all the currently available (not yet deleted) references in front of you.”

    Would you agree that you are not being very specific? You could just as well have said “my source for this is intelligence sources”. Doesn’t get us very far, does it?

    All the more so as you were invited to give your sources to all readers of this blog and not just to a few select people you call “your {ie, my }group.

    The rest of your reply is devoted to a mini-biography of Markus Wolf, which no one asked for. What was asked for was your sources for saying that Markus Wolf worked for the US on the TIA project.

    Even there, you manage to score an own goal, since your mini-biography includes the following:

    “We, in the State Department, do not believe it is appropriate to give him a waiver from Section 212(a)(3)(b) because we think it is inadvisable for someone who spent his entire career as an opponent of free German, West Germany, as an opponent of the German people, and someone who is anti-American and trying to bring down our government and sponsor terrorist attacks against us, why would we give him a visa?

    So, he is not coming to the United States. He can write his best-selling books, but he won’t be able to enjoy the United States throughout the rest of his life if we have anything to do with it.”

    *************************

    Conclusions:

    1/. You have failed to back up your assertion about Markus Wolf and the US TIA project;

    2/. You would do better to follow the example of your fellow-Eminences and Useful Idiots and remain silent in the face of my questions if you can’t do better than that;

    3/. No wonder the other Eminences and Useful Idiots fail to respind to my questions; it is because they would do no better than you;

    4/. You are a mendacious and incompetent fool.

  • Republicofscotland

    “So, I will not be speculating as to the future “leader” of this northern branch office of the london labour party may be, whoever emerges will continue to act against the very Scots they are supposed to represent. I, for one, will not waste a nanosecond in wondering what tenth rater and utter utter nonentity we will be saddled with!”
    _____________________________

    Nigel, I understand your loathing of the Scottish Labour Branch all to well. As you point out they’ve not had Scots interests at heart for quite some time now.

    I understand from Westminster Scotland reporter, Harry Smith, that London Labour are desperate to line up Gordon Brown as the new leader of their Scotland branch. Brown however doesn’t seem to keen on the idea just yet,and will need more convincing.

    Harry Smith said in his report, Brown was seen as the only safe pair of hands that could guide the Scottish branch back on track, of course it was Brown and the Daily Record, whom offered up the vow that sunk independence.

    Another possible front runner is Jim soapbox Murphy according to Smiths report on ITV, he’s been unusually quiet, on the subject of new leader of the Scotland branch, but we’ll have to wait and see, who becomes leader of the branch.

  • Habbabkuk (la vita è bella)

    Nigel

    “To be fair to the labour party (and I hate to be fair to the mob who shit and pissed all over the poorest and most vulnerable Scots”
    _________________

    Nigel, please do not go down the Ben route. One analist on this blog is already one analist too many.

    Please that I do mean analist and not analyst.

    Thanks.

    ****************

    Habbabkuk says : always wipe your backside before sitting down to post.

  • YouKnowMyName

    Charlotte Iserbyt is a very interesting person who served in the US foreign Service (State Department?) and is acknowledged as one of those annoying Snowden-type whistleblowers, I can see why you omitted any reference to her! Have a great shift guys/gals 🙂

  • Peacewisher

    So David Cameron is stamping his feet and not paying his bills. EU members looking exasperated and furious, but Dave says “No, no, no, no.” Perhaps he’s getting lessons from Poroshenko?

  • Mary

    Anyone but him, Murphy.

    Vice-Chair (1997–2001) and Chair (2001–2002) of Labour Friends of Israel
    Murphy is a member of the Henry Jackson Society Advisory Council
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jim_Murphy

    How Jim Murphy voted on Foreign Policy and Defence

    Voted moderately for use of UK military forces in combat operations overseas
    Voted very strongly for the Iraq war
    Voted very strongly against an investigation into the Iraq war
    Voted very strongly for replacing Trident with a new nuclear weapons system
    Voted moderately for more EU integration
    Voted moderately against a referendum on the UK’s membership of the EU
    Voted moderately for strengthening the Military Covenant

    http://www.theyworkforyou.com/mp/10453/jim_murphy/east_renfrewshire/votes#foreign

  • Habbabkuk (la vita è bella)

    YouKnowMyName

    PS – I had a quick look at your “source” – one Charlotte Iserbyt – on Wikipedia.

    The following is an extract:

    “She is known for writing the book The Deliberate Dumbing Down of America. The book reveals that changes gradually brought into the American public education system work to eliminate the influences of a child’s parents (religion, morals, national patriotism), and mold the child into a member of the proletariat in preparation for a socialist-collectivist world of the future.[3] She says that these changes originated from plans formulated primarily by the Andrew Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Education and Rockefeller General Education Board, and details the psychological methods used to implement and effect the changes.[3]

    In an interview[2] concerning secret societies and the elite agenda she disclosed that in the early 1980s she had a chance to meet with Norman Dodd who had been the chief investigator for the United States House Select Committee to Investigate Tax-Exempt Foundations and Comparable Organizations commonly known as the B. Carroll Reece Committee. In the video interview she claims that Dodd discussed a ‘network’ of individuals including Carnegie who planned to bring about world peace by means of rapid changes in society. These changes would be brought about by involving the populace in various wars and military conflicts. She further claimed that Dodd had discussions with Rowan Gaither, the president of the Ford Foundation in which he revealed that directives from the President of the United States compelled foundations related to the Ford Foundation to direct their funding into bringing about the merger of the USA with the Soviet Union.”

    I especially liked the bit about the President of the USA working to bring about a “merger of the US with the Soviet Union”.

    ******************

    Conclusions:

    1/. Do not propose nutters as sources if you wish to be taken seriously

    2/. (alternatively) Stop using this blog as a leg-pull. 🙂

  • Republicofscotland

    “So David Cameron is stamping his feet and not paying his bills. EU members looking exasperated and furious, but Dave says “No, no, no, no.” Perhaps he’s getting lessons from Poroshenko?”

    _____________________________________________

    Peacewisher

    I can’t recall the full details, but I read that the EU are surprised at David Cameron’s reaction, as they claimed that they had already informed the Westminster Treasury, a week before of the monies due, apparently the funds are to be spread between France and Germany, but I can’t verify that.

    Could it be David Cameron’s outrage, is just a ploy to turn voters against the EU, in the run up to a possible EU in out referendum.

  • Habbabkuk (la vita è bella)

    Iain Orr

    “Would anyone else like to sign a letter to the Chair of the Joint Committee on Human Rights, Dr Hywel Francis MP (see my comments here on 24 Oct at 4.38 pm)? Iff there is enough interest, I will post here the draft I have already shared with co-signatories of the 9 October letter to Theresa May.”
    _________________

    Should I take the absence of further comment from you as an indication that there is no interest in such a letter from the regular posters on here?

    Or is it perhaps the case that you have received many expressions of interest from them on condition that you undertake to hide the light of their courageous stand under the proverbial bushel?

  • Iain Orr

    13 November sees a free peacemongering event in London. I pass on details from the Poems on the Underground organizers. Book early (I have).

    “We hope you can join us on Thurs Nov 13 for an evening of poetry and music relating to the First World War and those which followed, with our special guest Bruce Kent. … admission free but booking advised, as below:

    13 November, 6.45pm at Europe House, 32 Smith Square, SW1P 3EU

    THE PITY OF WAR with guest speaker Bruce Kent, readers Imtiaz Dharker & Cicely Herbert, and the Apollo String Quartet
    Poetry by Apollinaire, Trakl, Ungaretti, Edward Thomas, Ivor Gurney and SassoonMusic by Bach, Fernand Halphen, Vaughan Williams, Gurney and Butterworth

    Admission free, booking advised: [email protected] Tel
    020 7973 1992 “

  • Peacewisher

    @RoS: If anyone is fooled by Cameron’s theatrics, they are indeed a fool. Miliperson actually sounded outraged this afternoon in the House of Commons, but the media will spin it as they will, and those who lap it all up will do so as usual. We’ll know in about three days time if the ruse has worked because Cameron will be in the lead in the week-end opinion polls.

  • Ben E. Geserit Muad'Dib Further Confounding Gender Speculators

    YKMN; He’s rope-a-doping. He always claims to want links but never supplies his own. The job description requires keeping us busy.

  • Mary

    Presumably this is the sort of IDF activity that Murphy, as one time Vice Chair and Chair of LFOI supports.

    Two British women from the West Country running in Palestine to raise money for MAP are sprayed with ‘skunk’. Vile. They were also tear gassed.

    ‘Our skin was burning’ – Plymouth woman describes Israeli tear gas terror
    http://www.plymouthherald.co.uk/Plymouth-women-choke-vomit-Israeli-soldiers-tear/story-23546187-detail/story.html

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Skunk_(weapon)

    ‘”Skunk” is a malodorant, non-lethal weapon used for crowd control by the Israel Defense Forces . Deriving its name from the animal of the same name, “Skunk” is dispersed as a form of mist, fired from a water cannon, which leaves a terrible odor of rot or sewage on whatever it touches. It does not wash off easily and is said to linger on clothes for up to five years.[1] First attempts at developing a scent-based form of crowd control began in Israel in 2004; Skunk was first used for crowd control in September 2008.[2] A BBC reporter describes its effects as follows:-

    “Imagine the worst, most foul thing you have ever smelled. An overpowering mix of rotting meat, old socks that haven’t been washed for weeks – topped off with the pungent waft of an open sewer. . .Imagine being covered in the stuff as it is liberally sprayed from a water cannon. Then imagine not being able to get rid of the stench for at least three days, no matter how often you try to scrub yourself clean.”[3]

    It was sprayed in late June 2014 throughout Bethlehem’s Aida refugee camp in what residents describe as an ‘unprovoked and unexpected’ attack, though it is regularly used according to B’tselem, against Palestinian villages where demonstrations are frequent. Among Palestinians, the liquid is known simply as “shit”.[4]

    According to David Ben Harosh, head of technological development for the Israeli police, the recipe is based entirely on natural organic ingredients, including yeast and baking powder, does not include any harmful materials, and may even be ingested without causing harm. The inventors plan to market Skunk to other forces worldwide. The development of Skunk followed numerous accusations against Israeli forces that they often employ disproportionate force in clashes with Palestinian protestors (e.g. using rubber bullets or tear gas), which has led them to seek new, non-lethal but effective methods of crowd control.’

  • Republicofscotland

    Scare tactics have begun by the (FAS) Fiscal Affairs Scotland, and the (CPPR) Centre for Public Policy for Regions, that full Devo Max (everything but defence and foreign affairs)would leave Scotland with a fiscal deficit.

    The claims are made by John McLaren, a member of the FAS who has strong affiliations with Labour. McLaren also has influence with the (CPPR).

    At the same time as the (FAS) and (CPPR), announcements the state broadcaster the BBC has begun releasing bulletins to back up the scaremongering reports.

    It is in effect a rerun of the scaremongering tactics that frightened some voters into voting no. However whats on the cards this time around is not independence but full Devo Max, of course full Devo Max, will never be devolved, and the anxious voters who awaits a shed load of useful powers, will be bitterly disappointed.

    As for appointing Lord Smith, as, the, lets be kind, and call him the negotiator, I’m afraid to say this little piggy definitely won’t be bringing home the bacon, in a manner of speaking.

    http://www.newsnetscotland.scot/index.php/scottish-news/9819-concerns-projectfear2-underway-as-unionists-feel-devo-max-heat#comments

  • Republicofscotland

    “@RoS: If anyone is fooled by Cameron’s theatrics, they are indeed a fool. Miliperson actually sounded outraged this afternoon in the House of Commons, but the media will spin it as they will, and those who lap it all up will do so as usual. We’ll know in about three days time if the ruse has worked because Cameron will be in the lead in the week-end opinion polls.”
    __________________________________________

    That’s exactly it Peacewisher, Cameron will be trying to get as many voters onside as possible, between now and next May, and Ed Miliband’s feigned fury, is all for the same purpose, to win votes.

  • Peacewisher

    @RoS: Of course, Miliband could try the heroic way (in the current climate!) of dropping in the occasional policy that looks like it could help the people, and hinder the corporate takeover of Britain.

  • Mary

    Serious Crime Bill – amends Computer Misuse Act: life imprisonment re national security or economy of *any* country – even our enemies, even by GCHQ !
    By wtwuon October 26, 2014

    The Computer Misuse Act 1990 was controversially and ineptly amended by the police and Justice Act 2006 to try to curb Denial of Service attacks and a new “Making, supplying or obtaining articles” offence. The territorial scope of this Act was broadened to include the whole world, regardless of whether you are a British citizen or not and the penalties were increased so that they were serious enough for Extradition to the UK to apply.

    Spy Blog used to think that the House of Lords did a better job of scrutinising the detail of Bills, especially in regard to technical details, than the House of Commons, but now there are doubts, judging by the Serious Crime Bill.

    Perhaps it is because this typical Home Office “Christmas tree” Bill covering lots of topics was, for no good reason, introduced in the Lords rather than the Commons, that the standard of detailed scrutiny regarding the Computer Misuse Act amendments seems to be as poor as if it the Commons had had first crack at cocking things up.

    The Computer Misuse Act is a vital in safeguarding “the economic wellbeing of the UK”, but like the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act is showing its age due to fast moving technological change. We deserve a full new Act, with proper public consultation and detailed pre-legislative scrutiny, not just a few stupid amendments sneaked in as part of a wider Bill, without any public consultation at all..

    /..
    https://p10.secure.hostingprod.com/@spyblog.org.uk/ssl/spyblog/2014/10/26/serious-crime-bill—amends-computer-misuse-act-life-imprisonment-re-national-se.html

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