Britain’s Most Undesirable Immigrant: Why Was Shai Masot Given a Visa? 108


UPDATE
For over twelve hours there has been stunned silence from the FCO media department in reply to my questions about the Shai Masot case – I am an NUJ member, and I think the idea of a British journalist actually doing real journalism and asking real questions has astonished them. They have now asked me to put them in writing, and I have just done so. This is what I have submitted.

I am investigating the status of Shai Masot, the Israeli Embassy officer caught plotting against Alan Duncan and who was very active with UK political parties.

I appreciate the FCO line is that the case of his conduct is now closed. But I am not investigating his conduct, I am investigating the improper conduct of the FCO in granting him a visa and residency status in the first place.

My initial questions are these:

1) On what basis was Mr Masot in the UK?
2) He was not on the Diplomatic List, but plainly was a senior officer (an ex Major and current executive in the Directorate of Strategic Affairs) and therefore not qualified in the normal categories of technical and support staff. What precise visa and residence status did he hold?
3) How many more officers does the Israeli Embassy have with that same visa and residence status?
4) Has the FCO connived with the Israeli Embassy to allow many more Israeli intelligence operatives residence in the country than the official and reciprocated diplomatic staff allocation of the Embassy?
5) Did MI5, MI6 or any other of the security services have any input into Mr Masot’s acceptance and visa/residency status?

It is over 12 hours since I contacted the FCO’s media people with these questions. I would appreciate your earliest contact. My number is …

Craig Murray

Do not hold your breath

Astonishingly, the Israeli Embassy’s Senior Political Officer Shai Masot, implicated in a plot against the Deputy Foreign Minister, was not on the Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s Diplomatic List, the Bible for the status of accredited diplomats. This opens up a number of extremely important questions. Who was he, what was his visa status and why was he resident in the UK? It is very plain that the work he was doing as “Senior Political Officer” would equate normally to senior diplomatic rank.

He was a major in the Israeli Navy – in the FCO’s own table of equivalent rank, Major equates to Second Secretary in the Diplomatic Service. After that he went on to apparently executive positions in the Ministry for Strategic Affairs, before moving to the Israeli Embassy in London. There he held many recorded meetings with politicians, including giving briefings in parliament and at party conferences, and acted in a way that in general would accord with a rank around First Secretary to Counsellor.

So why exactly has he never featured in the FCO’s Diplomatic List? He very plainly outranks many of those Israeli diplomats who are featured. It should be noted it is perfectly normal for diplomats not to come from a country’s foreign affairs ministry. For one example Ivan Rogers who spectacularly resigned recently as Britain’s Ambassador to the EU, was from the Treasury not the FCO. Several people in the Israeli Embassy, who are on the Diplomatic List, are not from the foreign service. So that is not the reason.

This is not an obscure point. As a former diplomat, my first instinct was to look him up on the Diplomatic List. Every country in the world controls the number of permitted foreign diplomats very closely, for two reasons. Firstly it confers an immigration residency status, and secondly it confers tax exemption and an immunity from prosecution. The Diplomatic List is therefore not a loose thing – there is an entire section of good employees in the FCO tasked with policing it in close liaison with the Home Office.

Embassies are allowed a very small number of technical and support staff – IT people and cleaners – in addition. But these must be what they say they are. Plainly Masot was not in reality one of these, and plainly the official Israeli Embassy explanation that he was a “junior member of staff” is a lie. The Israeli Embassy is not given visas for “junior members of staff” except in very specific job categories which Masot plainly does not meet.

It is a lie in which the FCO must have been absolutely complicit in organising his immigration residency status in the UK.

I have contacted the media office of the FCO to query Masot’s immigration status, and so far received no reply. But the key questions are these:

Shai Masot was not on the Diplomatic List. What kind of visa and residence status did he have in the UK?
How many other operatives does the Israeli have with the same UK residence status as Masot?
Why is the British Government granting Israeli intelligence operatives false residency immigration status in the UK based on a deliberate lie about their role and position?
How many other Israeli intelligence officers are active in the UK with a false immigration status?
Who, specifically, authorised Masot’s visa, and why?

My advantage as an ex-British Ambassador is that I know the bureaucratically correct questions to ask to get to the heart of a matter. Please do ask them of your MP, and get them to demand answers from the FCO.


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108 thoughts on “Britain’s Most Undesirable Immigrant: Why Was Shai Masot Given a Visa?

1 2
    • Alcyone

      Very far from true. I believe it’s wide off the mark. Why do you feel that Craig is “certainly asking the right questions”? On the basis of what I have read thus far, they are irrelevancies.

      Why are they relevant, and in what Big Picture? I am willing to understand.

      • david kelly

        An agent of a foreign power was caught trying to subvert the British political system. I think it very relevant to try and ascertain why, how, and on whose authority he is in the country.

        “The mark” is clearly prosecuting him for espionage, or deporting him, or recalling our ambassador to Israel. But Mr Murray is a journalist.

      • Harry Vimes

        “I am willing to understand.”

        In the wider context it would seem reasonable to ask for solid evidence to substantiate that statement as from where I’m sitting it’s far from clear this is the case.

        Anyone with half a brain cell understands that the Diplomatic Missions of most nation states, particularly the richer more developed and powerful ones, contain elements whose role is far from diplomatic. The point is these are on the accredited list as being on the accredited list greatly assists in their alloted, ahem, ‘non diplomatic’ roles. As a logical consequence in essence the argument you are presenting is that someone with a known and recorded background in the military of another State who has been caught trying to interfere in the democracy of the UK was just some lowly employee with no diplomatic protection and therefore there is nothing to see here.

        I doubt there are many reasonable thinking people who would not conclude that if this incident had originated from within the Russian, Chinese, Iranian or other “officially designated ‘enemy'” not only would this be headline news for days and weeks on end but those like yourself arguing there is nothing to see here and claiming not to understand what all the fuss is about would be arguing exactly the opposite and taking the same line, with similar questions, as the author of this blog is taking.

        Indeed it would seem reasonable to suggest that most reasonable thinking people would go further and interpret this claim of wanting to understand what the fuss is all about or what relevance it has with more than a pinch of salt on the grounds that in this instance, because of who is involved, a free pass is being given – either through naivety or the deliberate opposite.

        On that latter point I’m inclined to concur with the blog author. You are quite clearly and deliberately shrilling Alcyone.

  • Richard Silverstein

    This all is due to the extremely complex, dysfunctional relation between the foreign ministry and the strategic affairs ministry. Masot worked for the latter, not the former. The MFA chafes at the SA’s assumption of many of its former roles in foreign relations. Specifically, MFA has essentially been removed from the fight against BDS.

    But SA has no previous experience in foreign affairs so they naturally have run around like a bull in a china shop throwing over all the dishes. Masot, though employed by SA, probably wasn’t even properly supervised by them. At any rate, his supervision would’ve been back in Jerusalem, not in London.

    That’s why Regev was so angry at having to describe Masot and who he was. It’s why he denied Masot was a diplomat. I don’t even know that it’s proper to call Masot an intelligence operative. He acted like one. But I doubt he had much training even at that. He was a rogue element essentially. The wonder is why Britain hasn’t sent him packing. Why would they want this element inside the country? Would they accept such behavior if it was Russia, China or even the U.S.?

    Further, until Britain responds energetically to this intrusion on its sovereignty no one in the Israeli government will lift a finger to change anything or hold anyone accountable.

    • craig Post author

      Richard,

      Yes, but you rather miss the point. Even if he works for the strategic affairs ministry, that is no bar to his appearing on the Diplomatic List. And if he is not on the Diplomatic List, then what was his residency status in the UK?

          • Node

            Macky,

            In your, link Galloway claims that Israel tried to murder Winston Churchill and “they planted bombs in the Foreign Office in Whitehall”. I am aware of the plan to kill Churchill and other British politicians but I can’t find any more information about the bomb plot.

            I’d be surprised if GG would say claim it without being sure of his ground, so is he quietly dropping a bombshell himself? Notice, he didn’t say “Planned to bomb” he said “planted bombs in the Foreign Office.” Bloody hell, more info please!

          • Macky

            @Node, yes that is quite something; either he means it literally, and there’s a piece of history not widely know, possibly suppressed, or perhaps he is talking metaphorically, in that the bombing of the King David Hotel with killed so many civil servants, was effectively an attack on the FO in Whitehall, for whom they worked ?

            I’m sure he will be asked to explain his comments.

          • david kelly

            OK, now I understand. I replied to your first comment assuming it was through genuine ignorance on your part, but now I realise you are an agent of the Israeli government. Sorry to waste your time.

      • Alcyone

        Well it’s unlikely that he had a business visa, less likely that he had a student visa, also unlikely that he had an artist’s or sports-person visa. Therefore, through negation one might assume that he had an employment visa. I don’t believe that you are limited to being an IT person or cleaner to qualify for a non-diplomat work visa. Why would that preclude a political-analyst/officer?

        As to why the Israeli’s chose to support a a non-diplomat visa, you might never find out and I suspect that may be a complete side-show of red herrings. There could for example have been some (legitimate) planning to help the man gain ILR (indefinite leave to remain), for example, after 5 years of continuous employment. That could also further lead to British citizenship.

        I think you should consult with an immigration consultant on this if you really want to know. Subject to that, I believe yes, I am missing your point.

        As for your questions about visas issued to (suspected) intelligence officers, aren’t you being unusually naive about the facts of life? Isn’t it a two-way street with other countries, including Britain doing much the same thing abroad? I fail to see why it is okay for an intelligence officer to receive a diplomat visa, but not a non-diplomat’s visa.

        • craig Post author

          Alcyone,

          I am not being unusually naïve, you are. The number of Embassy employees is very carefully controlled. Your suggestion that they can bring in as many people as they like on employment visas shows quite incredible levels of ignorance. You are not in fact that ignorant, you are merely shilling.

          • Alcyone

            Good morning Craig,

            I did not say and am not suggesting that missions can “can bring in as many people as they like on employment visas”. Point is what is your evidence the Israelis are doing that? The fact that this man was on a non-diplomat employment visa is not evidence in itself.

            My larger point was qualitative and not quantitative which is this: beyond IT workers and cleaners, can a mission not bring in visa workers, passport personnel, cultural officers, press officers, economic and commercial analysts/officers and, indeed political analysts/officers as needed, all of course within reasonable limits. I imagine that in addition to the FCO, the UKBA would have another level of oversight and approval, especially for non-diplomat employees.

            PS If one googles Shai Masot, the first two results are your blog. On the one hand that’s excellent for publicity; on the other, it may indicate that people here are obsessing rather more on the minutiae than elsewhere, or than warranted. So I am still missing your point, but ready to move on. Keep up the good energy.

          • Alcyone

            Sharpie, one of the reasons to refer to Krishnamurti here in this blog, is to highlight one’s and his (and many other great people’s before him) very rational skepticism of social and political organised movements and how much radical change they can and actually deliver.

            Aldous Huxley, a friend of K’s puts it quite eloquently in his foreword in K’s book The First and Last Freedom. An extract:

            “In this volume of selections from the writings and recorded talks of Krishnamurti, the reader will find a clear contemporary statement of the fundamental human problem, together with an invitation to solve it in the only way in which it can be solved – for and by himself. The collective solutions, to which so many so desperately pin their faith, are never adequate. “To understand the misery and confusion that exist within ourselves, and so in the world, we must first find clarity within ourselves, and that clarity comes about through right thinking. This clarity is not to be organized, for it cannot be exchanged with another. Organized group thought is merely repetitive. Clarity is not the result of verbal assertion, but of intense self-awareness and right thinking. Right thinking is not the outcome of or mere cultivation of the intellect, nor is it conformity to pattern, however worthy and noble. Right thinking comes with self-knowledge. Without understanding yourself you have no basis for thought; without self-knowledge, what you think is not true.”

            This fundamental theme is developed by Krishnamurti in passage after passage. ”There is hope in men, not in society, not in systems, organized religious systems, but in you and in me.”
            http://www.jkrishnamurti.org/krishnamurti-teachings/view-text.php?tid=30&chid=385

            I recommend it to you without hesitation. (I am sure that free pdf versions are available around the net.)

            PS Would you agree that Craig was saved by being rejected as as an SNP candidate?

          • craig Post author

            Alcyone,

            The answer to your question at 09.21 is no, they cannot. Passport officers, cultural officers, press officers would all be accredited diplomats. The lower grade ones would be ranked as attache or third secretary. Remember you are talking of foreign government operatives working on your soil, and universally the numbers are tightly controlled and generally reciprocal. Otherwise how many thousands of junior staff do you think developing country Embassies would bring in? Embassies are expected to recruit locally engaged staff to do completely non-sensitive work. A small number of technical and support staff are allowed. The system is worldwide.

          • Macky

            “it may indicate that people here are obsessing rather more on the minutiae than elsewhere, or than warranted”

            Perfect example of shilling right there.

          • Old Mark

            how many thousands of junior staff do you think developing country Embassies would bring in? Embassies are expected to recruit locally engaged staff to do completely non-sensitive work.

            Craig- Your are ignoring the fact that London, as the1%ers know (the Baroness Scotland case refers) has a ‘servant problem’. Thus the ‘loophole’ that many developing country Embassies & High Commissions use to bring in more of their citizens is usually as domestic servants to more senior diplomatic staff- and for which visas appear to be readily available. There have been several documented instances of the diplomat employers such domestics being caught up in ‘modern day slavery’ cases, and where the servants have been ill treated or assaulted (the employer usually holds onto the servants passport in these cases).

            Perhaps the Israelis, knowing how lax the UK authorities are in such cases (until abuse is alleged and corroborated), have tried to kid the relevant UK authorities that Masod is nothing more that a waiter/chauffeur/domestic flunkey, and have obtained a visa for him on these spurious grounds ?

          • Harry Vimes

            Old Mark, (trying to be as deadpan and dry as possible)

            In the current climate I’m not sure you recognise the implications of what you just said , implying as it does the argument that the embassy, and by extention the Nation State in question, is so financially well off that it can afford to employ as a domestic servant a fully trained up former Commissioned Officer of the rank of Major from its own armed forces. It’s a novel idea that no doubt a whole host of actors, both private and state would show interest in. If only Dubyu or his glove puppet Blair had thought of that (we are not invading Iraq, these are just a load of former military personnel who have now been retrained through the Welfare of Work process and redesignated as domestic servants, lavatory attendents, and bottle washers who have just come to lend a hand in a spirit of friendship and cooperation); or Al Capone (these ain’t heavies they’re waiters and cleaners who just happen to be be well built and like working out at the gym).

            There will doubtless be those who would interpret that as a clear example of racial caricature and stereotyping. People have been publically denounced for a lot less.

            Alcyone,

            The question arises of course as to just what exactly is “right thinking?” From what criteria is “right thinking” arrived at or derived from? How does the individual know when he/she has achieved critical mass and arrived at “right thinking?”

            Clearly, according to the quote provided it can come neither from outside the individual or from the quote and body of work from whence the quote originated as by definition it is itself an organised argument originating from outside the individual and therefore part of an organised system involving the thoughts of at least two other individuals, the organised academic system those individuals went through, along with the socially organised system of literature and it’s sub systems of printing, paper making, engineering, science, ink making, distribution, transport etc which produced the book from whence the quote provided came from.

            Perhaps, trying to follow and “understand” the logic here, “right thinking” and the criteria which determines “right thinking” is internally generated, like spontaneous combustion? This still, however, leaves the issue of how each individual knows when this nirvana has been achieved? This sounds at one level like Bunyan’s warning about worldly wisdom from Pilgrims Progress.

            On another level it sounds like the philosophy of Humpty Dumpty, where words mean whatever the individual wants them to mean at any one moment. It’s the sort of half baked gobbledygook employed by those who hold that they are entitled to their own facts as well as their own opinion; people who suffer from cognitive dissonance who do not and will not accept evidence of any sort if it conflicts with the fantasy world inside their own heads (because some of them have more than one).

          • Old Mark

            I’m not sure you recognise the implications of what you just said , implying as it does the argument that the embassy, and by extention the Nation State in question, is so financially well off that it can afford to employ as a domestic servant a fully trained up former Commissioned Officer of the rank of Major from its own armed forces.

            Harry V- Of course Masot isn’t a domestic flunkey or anything remotely resembling the same; however the embassy may be indulging in a little atavistic chutzpah by using this ruse to get him a legitimate immigration status in the UK, while simultaneously denying his real spook cum diplomatic status. A long shot perhaps, but I’m sure the legitimate diplomats at the embassy would enjoy cheeking the Brits in this way (to use anglo saxon, as opposed to y*ddish, terminology)

  • fedup

    Thanks Craig, these questions are for starters, fact that the conservative party functionary who was dining with the said intelligence asset of a foreign government whilst clearly asking for directions and instructions further highlights the importance of gleaning the answers to your questions. Further facts yet to be established; how wide spread and far reaching are the degree of penetration of a foreign intelligence service into our own executive branch we call government?

  • Bandolero

    In your last post you asked “Why Has Israeli Spy Shai Masot Not Been Expelled?”

    Now you say: “… Israeli Embassy’s Senior Political Officer Shai Masot, implicated in a plot against the Deputy Foreign Minister, was not on the Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s Diplomatic List … Every country in the world controls the number of permitted foreign diplomats very closely, for two reasons. Firstly it confers an immigration residency status, and secondly it confers tax exemption and an immunity from prosecution.”

    So my question is: “Why Has Israeli Spy Shai Masot Not Been Prosecuted?” Is espionage not a crime in the UK?

  • Paul Rigby

    I was going to ask where MI5 has been while these Israeli agents were – and very obviously remain – subverting British democracy.

    Then I recalled the carte blanch afforded BOSS in Britain by MI5 in the 1960s and 1970s, and concluded that I am looking at a repeat, with a second apartheid state’s intelligence services being allowed to run free – because it has suited MI5’s agenda.

      • Paul Rigby

        You’re right, RobG, there is a commonality of targets and goals, but I would be astonished, given the precedent of Gordon Winter et al, if MI5 wasn’t using the Israelis for some very specific and distinctly “British” objectives.

        • Paul Rigby

          Just to illustrate the potential utility for MI5 of Israeli operations:

          As journalist Ben White observed in October 2016, the Israeli embassy’s director of public affairs Rony Yedidia-Clein has also stated, in a video of a public talk, that the embassy had helped to “set up friends of Israel organisations around the country”, citing the examples of Inverness Friends of Israel and Jersey Friends of Israel.

          Yedidia-Clein said she worked with a “whole team” of people to do this and one person she shared credit with was an audience member called “Stephen” – likely Stephen Jaffe, grassroots consultant of the Board of Deputies, who believes that the Israel lobby functions best “when leadership and grassroots combine”. He is also co-chair of Northern Ireland Friends of Israel which has hosted several Israeli embassy speakers.

          Like Jaffe’s Northern Irish group, ostensibly independent local organisations such as Glasgow Friends of Israel and West of England Friends of Israel have hosted speaking events for Israeli embassy figures. Might they too be less “grassroots” and more “astroturf”, operating, effectively as front groups for Israeli state power?

          Notably, these last three bodies all feature on a list of groups compiled by We Believe in Israel, a side-project of major UK pro-Israel group BICOM, set up in 2011 to mobilise civil society in support of Israel.

          Source: https://www.alaraby.co.uk/english/Comment/2017/1/10/Smears-and-astroturfing-UK-Israeli-embassys-techniques-revealed

    • lysias

      Israel now, like South Africa then, can do dirty work that U.S. agencies are unwilling to soil their hands with. Plausible deniability.

      I would hazard the guess that British agencies share those concerns.

  • bevin

    My guess is that the Israeli government has more employees in London than, for example, either the French or Indian governments. And one reason is that the Embassy is running a large part of the Labour Party as well as keeping tabs on the Tories, LibDems etc.
    The South African analogy is a good one.

    • Sharp Ears

      That is Tom Brake, PC, MP, LD Carshalton and Wallington, in the last photo with Masot smiling up at him..

      ‘On 29 July 2015, Brake was named as foreign affairs spokesperson and party chief whip.’

      https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tom_Brake

      I don’t know if it is still extant but there was an LD Friends of Israel with Monroe Palmer at the top. He is now Lord Palmer.

      His concerns ref Israel are recorded here in his Register of Interests.
      http://www.parliament.uk/biographies/lords/lord-palmer-of-childs-hill/4214

    • Loony

      bevin – It is unlikely to be to your ideological advantage to pursue the South African analogy too far.

      Presumably you would prefer Israel to adopt a more conciliatory approach in its relations with Palestinians and its neighbors. Maybe Israeli’s are a bit dubious about what the future would hold for them should they comply with normal standards. If they look to South Africa for guidance then it is a racing certainty that they will not like what they see.

      Maybe if western liberals had not so gleefully abandoned South Africa to its post apartheid fate (all those murders of white farmers which is of no interest to anyone, all that xenophobic violence which can never be acknowledged etc etc) then Israel just might be more persuadable.

      Could it possibly be that all of the things so abhorrent to civilized people are in some small part caused by the very people that rail so loudly against the injustice of it all.

      • Alcyone

        I think you make a sane point amongst all these shallow-thinkers foaming at their mouths. Neurotics abound in this world and they think they are somehow superior and that their ideologies will save the world. Poor, poor lost souls I observe.

        • Paul Barbara

          @ Alcyone January 10, 2017 at 23:40
          ‘I think you make a sane point amongst all these shallow-thinkers foaming at their mouths. Neurotics abound in this world and they think they are somehow superior and that their ideologies will save the world. Poor, poor lost souls I observe.’

          Rather a ‘lost’ soul than a ‘sold’ soul.

      • Phil the ex-frog

        The end of apartheid SA was a win for those with the most to lose. A corrupt black government replaced the white government while international (white) capital kept control of the resources. A few dead locals, including white farmers, is of little consequence to such arrangements. I have to suggest that racist states are an economic tactic. The end of apartheid Israel will, unless the sky drops in, be driven by essentially financial priorities. It’s all materialist mate.

        You are unclear (xenophobic?) but seem to suggest a post apartheid genocide of white farmers. What makes you say this?. This was often claimed but I thought it was just more racist bollocks.

  • Soralan

    If he isn’t on the list of approved diplomats does that mean he loses his immunity from prosecution if he is found to have done something illegal?

  • lysias

    At least here in the U.S., prosecutors act under the doctrine of prosecutorial discretion, which holds they are always free not to prosecute a crime.

    • Paul Barbara

      @ lysias January 10, 2017 at 21:59
      ‘At least here in the U.S., prosecutors act under the doctrine of prosecutorial discretion, which holds they are always free not to prosecute a crime.’

      And. of course, ‘Reasons of National Security’; very handy concept, like our ‘Not in the public interest’.

  • RobG

    Sharp Ears. Obama’s farewell speech this evening will be well worth listening to. It might be historic, with regard to what’s going on behind the scenes.

    In light of recent events my odds have changed:

    Trump becomes President in 10 days time: 2 to 1

    There’s a coup against Trump in the next ten days: 11 to 8

    Trump gets abducted by aliens: 500 to 1

    (the relatively low odds against alien abduction are a little in-joke)

    If you want some total bullshittery, here’s the blue pill…

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kC7Bd9SjSGI

    (no mention, of course, of the total criminality and corruption that the Wikileaks e-mails revealed)

  • giyane

    In the first photo Masot is sitting on a panel of advisors about Heathrow, presumably promoting the Israeli security industry. Not a diplomat at all, just a Terrrr salesman. Them’s not turnips, that’s sugar-beet, Willum.
    Once a matter has been out-sourced, surely there’s no connection with government? How could anybody suggest such a stupid thing?

  • Conflict Watch

    Is it possible Former-MP (Colonel) Patrick Mercer was targeted by these in on-Diplomatic Spooks, is there a case to look into this in your opinion. Also, Ambassador Regev is formerly South African, his accent clearly gives that fact away, Apartheid Experts and follow on from BOSS era to freely operate in the UK by blending in to infiltrate all types of Parties, NGOs and Groups, particularly ones with anti-Israel agendas, with large wads of cash. Some MPs are accompanied to meetings by Mossad types, easy to spot wearing long dark jackets always standing in the back, never seated.

  • Putinister

    What exactly had satanyahu come to London to discuss with the chinless wonder at 10 Downing, under the radar of that infamous Balfour Declaration photo-op at the British Library?

  • Sharp Ears

    ‘He was a major in the Israeli Navy – in the FCO’s own table of equivalent rank, Major equates to Second Secretary in the Diplomatic Service. After that he went on to apparently executive positions in the Ministry for Strategic Affairs, before moving to the Israeli Embassy in London.’

    How long has he been here and up to his tricks?

    Here he is in 2012 at the Herzlia gathering – behind the scenes by the look of it, His name does not appear in the programme.
    He has a You Tube channel.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZKWEs_H1dFc – 1.09.20

    A couple of the knights of the UK realm were there – Sir Michael Leigh and Sir Mark Allen as well as Laura Fitzsimons, then the BICOM director. A few connections to BP noted too.
    http://www.herzliyaconference.org/eng/_Uploads/dbsAttachedFiles/ProgramE(15).pdf

    • Old Mark

      He should Dave, but after his floundering performance yesterday the wind is out of his sails, and I can’t see him lobbing such controversial PMQs at Theresa at the moment.

        • Harry Vimes

          Not sure how a clear statement about being against employers who use immigration to undercut wages in the UK can be translated into the exact opposite unless the individual making such an argument has tried exceptionally hard to achieve the highest level Dan of obtuseness possible.

          Perhaps this represents an example of Alcyone ‘s “right thinking?”

      • Old Mark

        As expected, Corbyn played safe and kept to the NHS at PMQs; he did land a couple of glancing blows on TM, but I’d have liked to have seen a switch in subject for the final question along the lines of

        – ‘Would the PM like to comment on the table talk banter indulged in by an employee of a ‘friendly’ foreign power, in the company of a researcher employed by the Hon Member for Harlow, which referred to the Foreign Secretatry as an ‘idiot’ and his Deputy as needing to be ‘taken down?’

        Such a question would have discomfited TM even more than questions about her government’s lamentable handling of the usual NHS winter crises.

  • lysias

    Anybody know who the former high-ranking British intelligence official leading the outside entity engaged in political consulting work that has apparently made the charge that there were contacts between the Russians and the Trump campaign might be? That according to a front-page article in today’s Washington Post.

    • John Goss

      It’s probably Guardian fiction-writer, sorry “journalist” Luke Harding. He makes up all kinds of anti-Russia stories for the spooks. It has all the marks of one of his. He must be very high up and his “facts” are as ludicrous as the Bellingcat website from which western governments get their drivel.

        • John A

          The Russians actually didnt let him back in because his visa had expired – it was his own fault he had not reapplied properly. However, the dastardly Russians were compassionate enough to let him and his family back in long enough for his kids to finish their school year there.
          BTW, Harding’s wife writes ludicrous anti Putin propaganda in her day job as a literature reviewer/editor.

  • xAnonx

    Quite funny, MSM wonder why no one reads them anymore, meanwhile they pretend to ignore this issue 100% trying to bury it with all means.

    • Jams O'Donnell

      Yes. I’ve completely given up on the Guardian now – a steady progress to the right under it’s new trust and Jonathan Freedman. Not that it was ever a paper of the left, but it used to have some standards. Reading the CiF (not!) section, a lot of it’s readers feel the same way. Thank the Invisible Pink Unicorn there are sites like Craigs, WoS, WGD and others to replace it.

  • Greg Dance

    Forget the ‘white noise’ stories that are being pedalled intentionally about Trump and Russia to hold the headlines away from this story!

    This is the real story of a foreign state (Israel) intentionally interfering in our homelands domestic affairs and corrupting our democracy with suggestions of bribery to do so.

    Its as clear as that.

  • ben

    brilliant. i hope you get a response.
    sadly i bet you’re the only journalist to have asked them these questions, indeed probably the only one to even know the right questions to ask.

    • Manda

      I live in hope some MPs manage to summon the gumption to also ask them and others… may be faint hope but it’s high time British citizens and protecting what democracy is left came first in UK!

  • Mark Golding

    Please do ask them of your MP, and get them to demand answers from the FCO.

    I have asked ’38 degrees’ to petition the British government for an investigation into this breach of diplomatic protocol.

  • Anne O'Nimmus

    Craig, is there a possibility Masot could have secured his Visa under a non-israeli passport? Is that a Q worth putting?

  • John

    Have just tried to send the questions to my MP. Message returned, undeliverable. I have tested the email address itself, it is fine.

    “Message rejected by cluster2.eu.messagelabs.com” – I didn’t know that is how one spells Mossad nowadays … 🙂

  • Tony Riley

    Aren’t you a little bit outraged that Corbyn has met Hamas 12 times in Gaza, and they have clearly influenced Labour party policies regarding Israel, or that Duncan has made a fortune from oil, and so is giving metaphorical blowjobs to Arab countries in the form of pro-Pal rhetoric, in return for future earning opportunities?

    • Paul Barbara

      @ Tony Riley January 11, 2017 at 15:07

      I’m actually far more outraged that Israel encouraged the Muslim Brotherhood into Gaza, and further encouraged their setting up of Hamas in order to counter the PLO.
      Should I tell you about the Mossad and the ‘Achille Lauro’ incident?

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