Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament 173

I have just finished giving evidence to the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament on torture and extraordinary rendition. I am dashing off now and will give a fuller account later of what I said only. But I will just say that I was very happily surprised by how genuine the committee were, by the acuity of their questioning and by what was revealed of the general trend of their thinking. I perceived no hostility at all. I rather hope, and believe I have grounds to hope, that their eventual report will contain more of both truth and wisdom than is generally expected.

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173 thoughts on “Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament

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    • Resident Dissident

      The third UN report confirming that Assad has used gas was issued earlier today – of course it is all Western propaganda to those who justify bombings of aid convoys and hospitals.

    • Habbabkuk

      I think the moment has come to add the “Zero Hedge” website to the lost of extremely dodgy websites often linked to on here.

      Calm down, everyone.

      • fwl

        It is interesting, but clearly has a strong pro Russian bias and often reads like one of those doom and gloom silver and gold bug sites, which can be tiresome. The saw about being right for long enough to go bankrupt comes to mind. Beats reading the Guardian though.

    • lysias

      All Zero Hedge did was to report what Wikileaks had tweeted. And, since it posted a screen shot of the tweet, there can be little doubt that the report is correct and that Wikileaks tweeted precisely that.

      I wouldn’t say that makes Zero Hedge dodgy.

      • Habbabkuk

        And all you did was to report what Zero Hedge reported that Wikileaks had tweeted.

        Intention is all, amigo. And that makes you as dodgy as Zero Hedge (but some of us know that already, don’t we)…..

        • Hmmm

          Like Standley reporting hearsay as fact etc… But we all know BBC is well dodgy… Bit like reporting your own assertions about Diane Abbott as fact, but again you’re well known to be dodgy- FACT!

          • Habbabkuk

            Is it not a fact that there is no way that Mrs Diane Abbott would not – at least in her far-left days of yore – have spoken against private, fee-paying education?

            I really don’t know why you keep returning to deny that – nothing wrong with people changing their minds in the light of personal circumstances, of course. Would just be more honest if they came out with it by themselves rather than having it revealed by the media.

          • Hmmm

            I don’t know if its a fact – hence the reason I won’t reliable evidence
            And what about Standley? Response please ;0)

          • Habbabkuk


            Given that there is – I assume – no verbatim record of every single speech and pronouncement Mrs Diane Abbott ever made in her far-left days, one must proceed on the balance of probabilities.

            And that means that there is no way that Mrs Abbott – who had/has an opinion on just about everything – would not have spoken out against private, fee-paying education.

            After all, was she not a fully paid up member of the GLC crowd (Ken Livingstone, Ted Knight, John McDonnell, Frances Morrell et al) as well as being far-keft Mr Jeremy Corbyn’s squeeze…? 🙂

    • Ben

      This is Kerry’s work if surmised correctly. The Markets don’t like uncertainty and disorder. I believe the angst over Trump has mobilized hitherto invisible forces to avoid the re-boot a loose cannon will necessitate. May he choke on his hair-do.

      Of course the hair-do choke was intended for Kerry. If ever the Corporatist Dems had a Waterloo, I salivate over the possibility that this may be it.

      • Ben

        Of course now it’s absolutely necessary for Trump to win because the incredible hubris displayed thus far will see exponential spikes in that arena should their despicable tactics prevail.

    • John Goss

      Lysias, this is a story that was hovering around on Monday/Tuesday. Look at the dates on the tweets. It was right to be cautious at the time but that time is gone. It does not mean the tweets are inaccurate.

      Something is about to blow. It will be a whale of a blow for Hillary Clinton I suspect.

    • Harry Vimes

      Today’s word from the Humpty Dumpy Dictionary:

      DODGY (verb) Any information source which contradicts, criticises or otherwise attempts to present any alternative paradigm, methodology or deviance from the orthodoxy of existing status quo hierarchical power structures, actions, behaviours, right attitudes and policy positions which find favour with the dictionary author.

  • michael norton

    Ex-police chief found guilty of sexually abusing boys in 1980s

    Gordon Anglesea faced claims for quarter of a century that he preyed on boys at young offenders’ centre and children’s home
    A former police superintendent has been found guilty of sexually abusing boys in the 1980s at a Home Office attendance centre for young offenders and at a children’s home.

    Gordon Anglesea, 79, becomes the highest-profile offender brought to justice through the National Crime Agency’s Operation Pallial, which has been investigating allegations of widespread and organised child abuse in north Wales.

    • michael norton

      So a superintendant of the police was abusing boys in a childrens home.

      Next question
      who was complicit with him?

  • michael norton

    Gordon Anglesea: Former police chief guilty of child sex abuse
    Addressing Anglesea at Mold Crown Court Judge Geraint Walters said “there can only be one sentence and that is a prison sentence”.
    Anglesea, a former superintendent in the Wrexham area, had denied the charges, with his defence funded by the Police Federation!

    • michael norton

      Oh my God.

      “In 1994, Anglesea was awarded £375,000 in libel damages after media organisations ran stories about his links to abuse at children’s homes in north Wales.”

      Corruption pilled upon corruption.

      • Habbabkuk

        I wonder if Mr Anglesea will suffer the same (belated) fate as Mr Jeffrey Archer ?

        A second trial for perjury might seem in order (sentences to run consecutively, one hopes).

  • Habbabkuk


    Long cut and pastes without any personal input

    Lists of who’s appearing on “Question Time”

    Info on who’s a Friend of Israel……

    Yup, she’s well and truly back and determined to make this blog a better place 🙂

    • Resident Dissident

      Short sighted September has become Opthalmic October – Nihilist November can be expected shortly.

  • michael norton

    No airstrikes will be carried out in Aleppo for another day, as the humanitarian pause for the region has been extended until
    Saturday evening. Meanwhile, terrorists have been preparing to launch an offensive there, Russia’s Defense Ministry says.

    Is there a ceasefire in Yemen by the coalition of the
    Saudi Arabian,
    Americans ?

    • michael norton

      Of course we should not forget that the pipsqueak Hollande has been getting his knickers in a twist over Syria.
      Remember his best chums the Americans told Hollande he must not sell the two aircraft carriers that FRANCE were constructing for Russia because the RUSSIANS WERE SO BAD.

      So Hollande sold them to the military dictatorship of Egypt.
      Egypt is involved in the military blockade of YEMEN.
      Hey, they can also use those nice new FRENCH aircraft carriers to cause more terror for YEMEN.

      • michael norton

        French President François Hollande said Friday he would meet disgruntled police officers who have been protesting in Paris and other cities to denounce what they say are insufficient resources to fight mounting lawlessness.

        Six months from an election, the protest has put Hollande’s Socialist government on the defensive at a time when security forces are struggling to combat the threat of further terrorist attacks.

        Political opponents have seized on the discontent to accuse the government of letting violent crime and everyday lawlessness proliferate despite a large police recruitment drive.

        Perhaps Hollande should concentrate on his day job of sorting out the numerous problems inflicting FRANCE

        before telling SYRIA how to sort themselves out?

        • Ben

          Just a contrary thought in between your many words….have you considered that French law enforcement has been hog-tied because of political correctness and progressive self-destructive antics (eg Progressives can love the whole World, but can’t maintain a one-on-one relationship)

          Syria has not been developing progressives-they are focused on mere survival it takes one tough SOB to survive that maelstrom, cross the straits and land in Europe, only to find social weaklings who can’t survive a sale at an elite shopping center, much less dodging mortar shells.

          You progressives really muck everything up.

          • Ben

            I worked once with a Nigerian man who travelled home each year to settle business on his farm. He was killed on his last visit in 2003 but I recalled a momentous meeting with a remarkable man.

            At business meetings he would often approach me and say ‘give me a cigarette’

            I would always oblige, but after several of these encounters I asked after analyzing his psychology;

            “I think I know why you demand rather than ask politely for a cigarette….you see it as weak to ask”

            “Exactly..” was his reply.

            Progressives will never understand this…

          • fwl

            There is also the flat question as to whether one happens to have a cigarette etc with the unspoken inference if you do you would of course hand it over.

          • Ben

            I see (hmmm) you missed the point by a mile.

            Progressives acquiesce. They are soft targets…easy marks…just like your replies.

          • Hmmm

            So you’re a progressive? You’re actually a no-mark. You hand over your fags like you hand over your pathetic life. I can miss by several miles and still close enough to hit the outer edges of your ego, it seems. Game over dude. I can’t have a battle of wits with an unarmed opponent

          • Ben

            I can’t compete with one-dimensional thinkers hmmmm.

            Perhaps you can absorb and process two thoughts intertwined, but I often waste time explaining to the literalist morons who occasionally confront me.

            Sometimes people interpret weakness from a strength they can’t comprehend.

            You seem a party to those dolts.

  • giyane

    From time to time Western, to their minds Bestern, to my mind Bestial, powers take a bloody good swipe at Islam. Parking torture ships round the world and forcing newly colonised Eastern European client states to make torture prisons to replace the time-old torture arrangements with dodgy Middle Eastern dictators is just one of many progroms through history against Islam. The antics of the British Raj in India ravaged the scholars and therefore the core knowledge of Islam.

    Mission has been accomplished and the news is dominated by the crimes of Al Qaida starving the Syrian population that remains with the government by refusing aid convoys , or USUKIS owned and operated Islamic State using innocent people as human shields. Torture has created the mind-altered rage intended to disgrace Islam in the eyes of all intelligent occupiers of our planet.

    Why would the committee not take a civilised view of USUKIS crimes? The damage has been done. We Shittish wrecked our neighbours the Irish and then brokered an appallingly unfair peace deal. Wilberforce abolished slavery after the Muslim black African population had been decimated and Christianised.
    We lead the way in pretending to undo the damage we have already done. That’s what we’re good at.
    A local Black African church in Birmingham has a statue of a blue-eyed dewy =eyed Jesus on a cross, peace be upon him. 21 st century torture has made a monster of Islam.Enjoy the champagne.

    • Hmmm

      Now you put it like that maybe Christians worship the torture, rather than the man? Explains a lot…

  • Alan Campbell

    I see Julian Assange is now the hero of Fox News’ Sean Hannity and KKK leader David Duke. Your new mates, Craig. Conspiracy theorists of the world unite.

  • Sharp Ears

    Have you noticed that the incessant anti-Assad propaganda has ceased? It’s probably only temporary whilst eyes are being directed to ‘Putin’s armed fleet’ as Sky News reported yesterday and to more fighting and killing in Northern Iraq described by the embedded reporters, Guerin and Ramsay,

    • Resident Dissident

      Is the problem that they are not bombing the right sort of aid convoys and hospitals in Northern Iraq?

      • Herbie


        The problem is that NATO doesn’t like its terrorist proxies being routed.

        They don’t care about civilians.

        As their continual slaughtering of them shows quite clearly.

  • Resident Dissident

    The truly sharp sighted among of us may have noted have noted that yesterday’s exhibition of salt caked smoke stacks ( and they were very smoky – what were they burning?) off for somewhere near Nineveh employed the same killing by invitation from a puppet regime excuse as their predecessors used exactly 60 years previously when the tanks rolled into Budapest.

  • Anon1

    So Labour doubled its membership in Witney and halved its vote.

    That tells you everything you need to know.

    PS, if one of you pipes up, like Clark, to tell me “But Jeremy won a massive landslide”, or “But Labour’s membership is going through the roof”, then you are only demonstrating how badly you have missed the point.

    PPS, Labour now polling 24%.

        • Resident Dissident

          In my experience most of them are lazy arses who think that campaigning can be limited to posting on Twitter and Facebook rather than engaging with real people on the doorstep and by telephone – for them the real enemy is those who were prepared to do the hard work that actually won THREE General elections in a row for the Party.

    • deepgreenpuddock

      Wel I do not doubt the figures and I do not doubt the capacity of statistics to lie or mislead. (Lies, damned lies and statistics -H.Wilson-I think.)
      There is no doubt that the left is on a turmoil and are possibly even dysfunctional but the world of politics is very fickle and the Tories seem to me to be in all sorts of ‘not quite surfaced’ trouble.

  • michael norton

    A former North Wales Police Chief found GUILTY
    of historical child sex offences is to consult with his lawyers over appealing against his convictions.

    Gordon Anglesea, 79, from Old Colwyn, was convicted of one indecent assault against one boy and three indecent assaults against another on Friday.

    He was bailed pending sentence on 4 November.

    A source within his defence team said: “Of course we will appeal. He is an innocent man.”

    If he has just been found GUILTY
    how can he be innocent?

    • michael norton

      The Crown Prosecution Service Wales said he had been in “a position of power and authority” in order to “prey on very young and vulnerable victims”, with North Wales Police apologising to his victims.

      In 1994, Anglesea was awarded £375,000 in libel damages after media organisations ran stories about his links to abuse at children’s homes in North Wales.

      Private Eye was among the publications sued by Anglesea.

      I hope Private eye, keep an eye on this story.

  • Paul Barbara

    OT, but important:

    ‘ Syrian Arab Army Facebook page, 22 October 2016

    A statement from the General Command of the Syrian Arab Armed Forces:

    Since the beginning of the aggression on Syria, the aggressive position of Erdoğan’s regime against the Syrian people, the Syrian Armed Forces and the Syrian command was obvious; and it’s despicable role in financing, arming and training terrorists then facilitating their entry to Syria is clear and known.

    It is clear that the achievements of the Syrian Arab Armed Forces and Allies in the war on terror and especially in Aleppo foiled the delusions of Erdoğan and his plans in Syria and the region, and brought him to escalate his aggression by targeting the towns and villages in Northern Aleppo by airstrikes, and send units of the Turkish army inside the Syrian territories. also gave terrorist groups artillery and tanks support to conduct their terrorism against civilians in the Northern Countryside of Aleppo.

    The General Command of the Syrian Arab Armed Forces consider this new aggression a dangerous escalation and breach of the Syrian sovereignty.

    The General Command of the Syrian Arab Armed Forces consider the presence of units of the Turkish military inside the Syrian Arab Republic as absolutely refused and condemned;

    The Turkish military inside Syria is considered an occupation force, and will be dealt with accordingly.

    The General Command of the Syrian Arab Armed Forces consider the Turkish side fully responsible for all repercussions on the security and stability of the region.

    The General Command of the Syrian Arab Armed Forces,
    Saturday, October 22, 2016
    Damascus, The Syrian Arab Republic.

    Translated with rephrasing some sentences for translation purposes to our best abilities from the website of the Syrian Department of Defense. Link of the statement from DoD department:

    All the drumbeat to war armchair warriors on here may well get their war; the ants and cockroaches can then debate the issues of responsibility in mass meetings ad infinitum – poor critters won’t have the internet.

    • michael norton

      Damascus has warned TURKEY after a series of deadly strikes against Syrian Kurdish fighters in the north of the country,

      in a statement, the army threatened to “down by all available means” Turkish aircraft violating Syrian air space.

      Essentially TURKEY has been doing war against Syria for four years.
      That is why Syria down a Turkish aircraft on 22 June 2012

      • michael norton

        Syrian army responsible for third chlorine gas attack, says UN inquiry!!!” so it must be true.
        It is the third gas attack so far that the inquiry by the UN and the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, the global chemical weapons watchdog, has blamed on President Bashar al Assad’s forces.

        In a confidential report, submitted to the UN Security Council, the inquiry said military helicopters were used to drop barrel bombs on Idlib, which released toxic chlorine gas.

        • michael norton

          Mosul: Turkey insists its forces ‘cannot remain idle’ BBC thinks this is happening in Europe?

          Turkey are trying to make a greater Turkey

          but why never any condemnation of Turkey by the BBC and why do they continue to want us to imagine that turkey and Syria are in Europe, could it be the BBC still has a European Union Agenda?

          • michael norton

            Correspondents say Mr Abadi’s refusal to countenance the prospect of Turkish involvement in the Mosul offensive could upset Turkish President Recip Tayyip Erdogan, who has warned of sectarian bloodshed if the Iraqi army relies on Shia militias to retake Mosul, which is mostly a Sunni Muslim city.

            Mosul was once part of the Ottoman empire and Turkey sees the city as squarely within its zone of influence.

  • Sharp Ears

    I cannot believe that Gareth Pierce is now 76.

    I attended her book launch at the LRB bookshop some years back. She is quietly spoken but has a compelling presence.

    Dispatches from the Dark Side: On Torture and the Death of Justice.

    ‘The Obama administration, under some pressure from its antiwar base, has begun to release carefully selected evidence concerning the widespread use of torture in the War on Terror. In a set of devastating essays, Gareth Peirce argues that there needs to be a similar accounting of the British governments activities. Exploring the few cases that have come to light, such as those of Guantánamo detainees Shafiq Rasul and Binyam Mohamed, Peirce argues that they are evidence of a deeply entrenched culture of impunity toward the new suspect community in the UK British Muslim nationals and residents. Peirce shows how the British New Labour government has colluded in a whole range of extrajudicial activities – rendition, internment without trial, torture – and has gone to extraordinary lengths to conceal its actions: its devices for maintaining secrecy are probably more deep-rooted than those of any other comparable democracy. If the British government continues along this path, it will destroy much of the moral and legal fabric it claims to be protecting.’

  • michael norton

    US-led coalition killed 300 Syrian civilians in 11 probed strikes – Amnesty
    Published time: 26 Oct, 2016 08:42
    round 300 civilians were killed in eleven airstrikes conducted by the US-led coalition in Syria, which Amnesty International investigated for its latest report. Amnesty says the US must come clean about the civilian toll of its fight against Islamic State.

    Amnesty suspects that US Central Command (CENTCOM), which directs coalition airstrikes in Syria, “may have… carried out unlawful attacks” in Syria, failing to take necessary measures to prevent civilian killings.

    “We fear the US-led coalition is significantly underestimating the harm caused to civilians in its operations in Syria,” said Lynn Maalouf, Deputy Director for Research at Amnesty International’s Beirut regional office.
    Russia today

    If you look at the BBC they have this
    Syria conflict: Schoolchildren killed in Idlib air raids
    More than 20 people, many of them children, have been killed in air strikes on a rebel-held village in north-western Syria, activists say.

    A school complex was reportedly among several locations targeted in the village of Haas, in Idlib province.

    It was not immediately clear if the raids were carried out by Syrian government or Russian warplanes.
    Lots of pictures of The White Helmets ( funded by Turkey, U.A.E. U.K. U.S.A. the Netherlands)

    seems like a different war?

  • Gordon Logan

    Craig, I went public on David Shayler’s old website at the end of 1999, following a conflict with Peter Janke, who had been MI6 Director of Research until 1993. Dearlove tried to have me killed twice for whistleblowing. Once in Nov 2000 and once in Dec 2002. An attempt in 2005 by Scarlett was aborted. I have never bothered to complain about these events because I have no faith in UK institutions and I don’t have the stamina required to waste my time with them. The hounding has continued to the present day. My wife is Chinese and I have a British daughter. We were married in 2002 and the Home Office has been trying to break up our family for years. My wife’s latest request for a 2 year spouse visa was submitted at the beginning of July and we have received a letter dated 21st July saying that our ‘application raises issues relating to the European Convention of Human Rights that are complex in nature’ and that they ‘will make a decision on our case as soon as possible’. Once more they are looking for a loophole in order to break us up and force my British daughter to live in China with her mother. I have stress related heart failure as a result of more than 15 years of persecution by every means possible and have been in and out of hospital for the last four years, and have had 2 operations. How do you go about dealing with these criminals? We have had to pay thousands in lawyer’s fees and are financially ruined. You say that you were happily surprised by the Intelligence and Security Committee. My own limited experience of such people is that nothing embarrasses them, unless you catch them on the back foot. A large salary makes for a good digestion and an acceptable persona. By the way, I’ve waited to be executed several times. I have borne it like the courageous Scotsman that I am.

  • Sharp Ears

    This was a dreadful miscarriage of justice that destroyed lives

    Guildford Four: Gerry Conlon’s sister calls for files to be released

    I think the BBC and the author of the report, Tanya Gupta, are to be commended for bringing the matter to the public’s attention again and for the depth of the report.

    The good local solicitor, Alastair Logan, who fought for justice for these men, is still going strong as Vice Chair at the Solicitors’ International Human Rights Group.

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