Where They Tell You Not to Look 967


At the very beginning of the of the Skripal incident, the security services blocked by D(SMA) notice any media mention of Pablo Miller and told the media not to look at Orbis and the Steele dossier on Trump, acting immediately to get out their message via trusties in the BBC and Guardian. Gordon Corera, “BBC Security Correspondent”, did not name the source who told him to say this, but helpfully illustrated his tweet with a nice picture of MI6 Headquarters.

MI6’s most important media conduit (after Frank Gardner) is Luke Harding of the Guardian.

A number of people replied to Harding’s tweet to point out that this was demonstrably untrue, and Pablo Miller had listed his employment by Orbis Business Intelligence on his Linkedin profile. That profile had just been deleted, but a google search for “Pablo Miller” plus “Orbis Business Intelligence”, without Linkedin as a search term, brought up Miller’s Linkedin profile as the first result (although there are twelve other Pablo Millers on Linkedin and the search brought up none of them). Plus a 2017 forum discussed Pablo Miller’s Orbis connection and it both cited and linked to his Linkedin entry.

You might think that any journalist worth his salt would want to consider this interesting counter-evidence. But Harding merely tweeted again the blank denials of the security services, without question.

This is an important trait of Harding. Last year we both appeared, separately, at the Jaipur Literature Festival. Harding was promoting a book and putting the boot into Wikileaks and Snowden. After his talk, I approached him in an entirely friendly manner, and told him there were a couple of factual errors in his presentation on matters to which I was an eye-witness, and I should be very happy to brief him, off the record, but we could discuss which bits he might use. He said he would talk later, and dashed off. Later I saw him in the author’s lounge, and as I walked towards him he hurriedly got up and left, looking at me.

Of course, nobody is obliged to talk to me. But at that period I had journalists from every major news agency contacting me daily wishing to interview me about Wikileaks, all of whom I was turning down, and there was no doubt of my inside knowledge and direct involvement with a number of the matters of which Harding was writing and speaking. A journalist who positively avoids knowledge of his subject is an interesting phenomenon.

But then Harding is that. From a wealthy family background, privately educated at Atlantic College and then Oxford, Harding became the editor of Oxford University’s Cherwell magazine without showing any leftwing or rebel characteristics. It was not a surprise to those who knew him as a student when he was employed at the very right wing “Daily Mail”. From there he moved to the Guardian. In 2003 Harding was embedded with US forces in Iraq and filing breathless reports of US special forces operations.

Moving to Moscow in 2007 as the Guardian’s Moscow correspondent, others in the Moscow press corps and in the British expatriate community found him to be a man of strongly hawkish neo-con views, extremely pro-British establishment, and much closer to the British Embassy and to MI6 than anybody else in the press corps. It was for this reason Harding was the only resident British journalist, to my knowledge, whose visa the Russians under Putin have refused to renew. They suspected he is actually an MI6 officer, although he is not.

With this background, people who knew Harding were dumbfounded when Harding appeared to be the supporter and insider of first Assange and then Snowden. The reason for this dichotomy is that Harding was not – he wrote books on Wikileaks and on Snowden that claimed to be insider accounts, but in fact just carried on Harding’s long history of plagiarism, as Julian Assange makes clear. Harding’s books were just careful hatchet jobs pretending to be inside accounts. The Guardian’s historical reputation for radicalism was already a sham under the editorship of Rusbridger, and has completely vanished under Viner, in favour of hardcore Clinton identity politics failing to disguise unbending neo-conservatism. The Guardian smashed the hard drives containing the Snowden files under GCHQ supervision, having already undertaken “not to even look at” the information on Iraq and Afghanistan. The fact the hard drives were not the only copies in the world does not excuse their cravenness.

We know, of course, what MI6 have fed to Harding, because it is reflected every day in his output. What we do not know, but may surmise, is what Harding fed back to the security services that he gleaned from the Guardian’s association with Wikileaks and Snowden.

Harding has since made his living from peddling a stream of anti-Assange, anti-Snowden and above all, anti-Russian books, with great commercial success, puffed by the entire mainstream media. But when challenged by the non-mainstream media about the numerous fact free assertions on behalf of the security services to be found in his books, Harding is not altogether convincing. You can watch this video, in which Harding outlines how emoticons convinced him someone was a Russian agent, together with this fascinating analysis which really is a must-read study of anti-Russian paranoia. There is a similar analysis here.

Perhaps still more revealing is this 2014 interview with his old student newspaper Cherwell, where he obvously felt comfortable enough to let the full extent of his monstrous boggle-eyed Russophobia become plain:

His analogies span the bulk of the 20th century and his predictions for the future are equally far-reaching. “This is the biggest crisis in Europe since the Cold War. It’s not the break-up of Yugoslavia, but the strategic consensus since 1945 has been ripped up. We now have an authoritarian state, with armies on the march.” What next?

“It’s clear to me that Putin intends to dismember Ukraine and join it up with Transnistria, then perhaps he’ll go as far as Moldova in one way or another,” Harding says. This is part of what he deems Putin’s over-arching project: an expansionist attempt to gather Russo-phones together under one yoke, which he terms ‘scary and Eurasian-ist’, and which he notes is darkly reminiscent of “another dictator of short stature” who concocted “a similarly irredentist project in the 1930s”.

But actually I think you can garner everything you want to know about Harding from looking at his twitter feed over the last two months. He has obsessively retweeted scores of stories churning out the government’s increasingly strained propaganda line on what occurred in Salisbury. Not one time had Harding ever questioned, even in the mildest way, a single one of the multiple inconsistencies in the government account or referred to anybody who does. He has acted, purely and simply, as a conduit for government propaganda, while abandoning all notion of a journalistic duty to investigate.

We still have no idea of who attacked Sergei Skripal and why. But the fact that, right from the start, the government blocked the media from mentioning Pablo Miller, and put out denials that this has anything to do with Christopher Steele and Orbis, including lying that Miller had never been connected to Orbis, convinces me that this is the most promising direction in which to look.

It never seemed likely to me that the Russians had decided to assassinate an inactive spy who they let out of prison many years ago, over something that happened in Moscow over a decade ago. It seemed even less likely when Boris Johnson claimed intelligence showed this was the result of a decade long novichok programme involving training in secret assassination techniques. Why would they blow all that effort on old Skripal?

That the motive is the connection to the hottest issue in US politics today, and not something in Moscow a decade ago, always seemed to me much more probable. Having now reviewed matters and seen that the government actively tried to shut down this line of inquiry, makes it still more probable this is right.

This does not tell us who did it. Possibly the Russians did, annoyed that Skripal was feeding information to the Steele dossier, against the terms of his release.

Given that the Steele dossier is demonstrably in large degree nonsense, it seems to me more probable the idea was to silence Skripal to close the danger that he would reveal his part in the concoction of this fraud. Remember he had sold out Russian agents to the British for cash and was a man of elastic loyalties. It is also worth noting that Luke Harding has a bestselling book currently on sale, in large part predicated on the truth of the Steele Dossier.

Steele, MI6 and the elements of the CIA which are out to get Trump, all would have a powerful motive to have the Skripal loose end tied.

Rule number one of real investigative journalism: look where they tell you not to look.


967 thoughts on “Where They Tell You Not to Look

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  • Trowbridge H. Ford

    Why go along with Gordon Corera’s claim that it was revenge, implicating the Russians still, when he is MI6’s official historian as his terrible book, The Art of Betrayal, demonstrated?

  • Gary

    Still to me it seems that the motive of the attack on Skripal was NOT to silence him, NOT to kill him. Seems more like the motive was to have an ‘obviously Russian’ attack using chemical weapons take place on Western soil. Although a ‘minimal attack’ due to it being against a Russian, and a disgraced Russian at that.

    Why go to the bother of obtaining/manufacturing/importing a chemical weapon? Much, MUCH easier to shoot him or stab him. It was elaborate and unnecessary, like a Bond villain using a laser and walking away, overconfident in his elaborate plan for a creative death for 007. THAT is pure entertainment, THIS is pure theatre.

    It’s not about who benefits from Skripal’s death, it’s about who benefits from the allegation of Russian use of chemical weapons on British soil. Who wants to put a wedge between Europe and Russian? Who gains?

    Personally I think that this is entirely an economic strategy. No access to Russian gas for the Europeans means USA can export the shale gas they’ve been producing at a loss. Britain has been on the verge of fracking all of middle England too. Sanctions would greatly increase the gas price and actually make it viable. Lots of pounds, lots of dollars. Lots of rich party donors. Likewise it will affect, badly, Russian gas companies.

    • LondonBob

      Ties in with the Litvinenko meme they successfully implanted in to the public consiousness, that was wildly implausible but they got the market swallow it. Two birds with one stone.

    • SA

      But gas is only part of it. It has been a clear strategy to impose economic sanctions as part of a the overall whole spectrum domination policy. The hegemon had thought that having caused the pillage of Russia after dismantling the Soviet Union, that there is no longer any challenge to the empire. Putin and the resurgence of Russia have reversed this and the hegemon is fighting back on all fronts with no holds barred.

  • John Holland

    Fascinating stuff but where does Vladimir Uglev fit into all this? Apparently run over in Russia days after saying he may have helped develop the Novichock used in the Salisbury attack. Is he for real?

    • LondonBob

      Elsewhere though, Vladimir Uglev, one of the former Soviet CW scientists who was extensively interviewed about this affair (and who more or less called Mirzayanov a fraud, at that) was hit by a car in his native Anapa last week, prompting conspiracy theories galore. However, it was just an elderly gentleman (70 years old) who nudged him at a pedestrian crossing, resulting in some minor bruising. The man stopped, called an ambulance and waited with Uglev until they arrived. Later, the same man picked up Uglev from the hospital and drove him home.

      Uglev was interviewed by dozens of journalists immediately after this little incident, and he explained everything calmly and said it was a minor everyday accident, completely indeliberate, that he was fine and that it was nothing to worry about at all.

      People really have been brainwashed to believe the most ludicrous nonsense when it comes to Russia.

  • alasdairB

    Craig,
    My understanding is that a separate D (SMA) Notice was /is not required in respect of the Salisbury incident as this would be covered under the existing Standing Notices , and as such the MSM would most probably have been reminded of their self censoring responsibilities. Perhaps some clarification is required ?

  • Charles

    The narrative was pre-scripted, badly pre-scripted but nonetheless its what we heard and what they have stuck to so making trouble for Russia on a pack of lies was the motive with all the benefits that went with it. And pitfalls.

    As all British Cover Ups go tits up after a while this was not the exception other than the speed of which it turned into a farce.

    We now know that a specific form of Novichok was identified by Porton Down after 2 days, 2 weeks later the source was identified on the door handle which had remained pure and not contaminated by pre-existing substances on the door handle nor by the rain and not aged or decomposed in any fashion.

    All suspects even the colleague spies that Sergei betrayed are eliminated from inquiries.

    This particular Novichock can be rendered safe by wiping with baby wipes and posed no danger to anyone unless they touched the door handle which both the Skripals were not sure to have touched.

    Paramedics on the scene within 60 seconds of the 999 call and the Air Ambulance scrambled but the air ambulance takes a scenic route at a slow speed arriving 30 minutes later.

    The first police officer on the scene is not a uniformed bobby but a Detective Sergeant he then goes directly to the Skripal home knowing the pair on the bench had been poisoned he enters the home without gloves.

    Excellent Council CCTV footage of the bench exists but the police use grainy shots from a gym camera to ask for help in identifying people that passed through Market Walk. The council CCTV has been withheld from public gaze.

    The pair having lost wife / mum & son / brother comparatively recently having no other family in the UK are split up. The UK ban the cousin / niece from coming to the UK to visit and consular access has been denied. We are told they don’t want to talk to anyone.

    I can’t see any motive however for allowing such a dumb ass plan to be enacted.

  • Sam Sung

    Watching the Harding (self-serving) video with it’s “post hoc ergo propter hoc” justification of Putin “recruiting” Trump really does make one despair for the future of journalism.

      • Sam Sung

        Yes, that’s what I was referring to – when Harding says “Putin needed a candidate/mark who was overweight, over-bearing, vain, philandering, etc.” and then up pops Trump”. It’s too ridiculous for words.

    • Garth Carthy

      Yes. Any mature, rational adult couldn’t help but notice the contrast between the cool, professional American journalist demanding proof and the overgrown schoolboy (Luke Harding) who was consumed with arrogant “upper class” prejudice and a nauseating patronising attitude of “passive aggression”. He kept saying things like “You have to understand…”
      Well, I seem to remember a certain Tony Blair who often used to use the same phrase and had the same infuriating patronising arrogance.
      We all know what a snake-oil salesman he was, too…

      • Jack

        Garth Carthy

        Harding wasnt prepared to get real questions, he lives in an echo chamber like most of the media/political establishment.
        This is a clear example where Alternaive media meets Establishment. No wonder why the establishment trying to censor and destroy media outlets like Real News Network.

  • Anon

    Does anyone know how (or from where) the analytical standards were obtained that were used to confirm that ‘Novichock’ was the poison? (Just curious).

    • Radar O’Reilly

      Well, it can be reverse engineered to an extent. When I did my tandem MS/MS TOF-SIMS course at the Warwick University Mass Spectroscopy Centre, the Libraries were supplies by the manufacturer e.g. jeol, VG/Fisons, etc. locally updated with the relevant species/expected spectra – thank goodness I was focusing on an inorganic Carbonyl problem, that’s simply deadly/touch-toxic and instantly-explosive – nowhere near as dangerous as the dreaded novachok.

      This (random) supplier has some cal. spectral libraries to research, from Pennsylvania. http://www.sisweb.com/index/sis/referenc.htm

      YELP, Yellow Pages for PD/Salisbury might reveal who their contract instrument suppliers are, or probably referenced in their https://scholar.google.com publications.

    • bj

      The premise of your question is false. Nobody –but politicians– has ever confirmed anything.

      • Anon

        But to confirm it they would need a standard; a standard that can only be manufactured in Russia. So is this where they got their standard?

        Or are they going on a computer generated fragmentation pattern as our MS expert ‘Radar O’Reilly’ seems to be suggesting.

  • Jack

    “But actually I think you can garner everything you want to know about Harding from looking at his twitter feed over the last two months. He has obsessively retweeted scores of stories churning out the government’s increasingly strained propaganda line on what occurred in Salisbury. Not one time had Harding ever questioned, even in the mildest way, a single one of the multiple inconsistencies in the government account or referred to anybody who does. He has acted, purely and simply, as a conduit for government propaganda, while abandoning all notion of a journalistic duty to investigate. ”

    Indeed and quite rich for someone (Harding) that calls everyone a useful idiot for countering his activist claims on Russia.
    Radicalized nut!

  • John Goss

    Great piece of research Craig, that as you say, any journalist worth his or her salt could uncover if he or she chose to do. Harding was first choice to accuse Russia of killing Alexander Litvinenko without any facts to back it up. I am guessing that as soon as the Nikolai Glushkov murder is investigated and acted upon it will become evident that Lugovoy was not involved in the death of Litvinenko. They were buddies from the underground and friends of Berezovzky.

    https://johnplatinumgoss.wordpress.com/2018/03/17/the-murder-of-nikolai-glushkov/

    However Harding, and so-called journalists like him, will always be there to peddle whatever lies the secret services choose to concoct and hoodwink the sleeping sheeple.

    • Garth Carthy

      Absolutely. Harding may or may not be in close touch with the intelligence service, but he certainly seems to display the same qualities that some intelligence agents seem to present – superficial intelligence combined with downright stupidity.

  • Yalt

    I assume every use by Craig of the word “journalist” in reference to Harding is deliberate irony.

    Here’s a useful and occasionally comic (“[Leigh and Harding’s] book has the tone of Gollum reminiscing about the hobbit he strangled in order to get hold of the Ring”) 2011 piece by Israel Shamir on Harding’s redaction of Wikileaks cables for the Guardian:

    https://www.counterpunch.org/2011/02/25/cable-cooking-and-the-war-on-assange/

    How could “a borderline psychotic paranoiac” pull off such a professional job? I suspect his nuttery is an act, but maybe I underestimate the man’s interesting qualities.

  • Codcarton

    That Mate interview of Harding is an excellent exercise in excellent journalism – a calm, focused interviewer not allowing himself to be deflected by a passive-aggressive interviewee trying to sidestep the questions with sweeping assertions and deflections.
    Mate did not really need to intervene much… as for Puke Harding, he became increasingly hysterical, spluttering, spuming and swivel-eyed as the interview progressed. Talk about hoist by his own petard.

  • Casual Observer

    The connections between Skripal, Steele, and the Pablo bloke, have been aired from the word go, mostly by people in the USA. Considering that there will be so much evidence in the public domain that will have survived the ‘Memory Hole’ it seems quite remarkable that these so called journo’s should be sticking their necks out quite as far as they seem to be doing.

    Needless to say, the Americans will be fully aware of any British links to the now infamous Steele Dossier, and it seems likely that if the linkage is real, then the current US administration would be interested in exacting its pound of flesh either by expecting penitence of the assistance sort, or possibly by bringing our current sorry excuse for a government to its conclusion.

    Then there’s the OPCW report, the secret version that was given to the governments of the member states. If it should raise questions with regard to the British version of events, then one would have to imagine that the governments who expelled Russian diplomats in concert with the UK, would have every reason to be somewhat miffed at HMG ?

    And in the midst of all this, the government is supposedly going to get cake and eat it, in what must be the most significant foreign policy venture, probably for a century or more.

  • Dave G

    Why would the UK government give us the narrative – that the Skripals were poisoned using a novichok nerve agent by the dastardly Russians – and then give us the evidence that they were lying when they said that? It doesn’t make sense that they would tell us that novichok is far more deadly than the VX which killed the North Korean leader’s brother in minutes, and then tell us that all three victims were on the road to recovery. How is that possible with a very pure grade of deadly nerve agent?
    And how is it possible that the Skripals were poisoned with a novichok, when their symptoms took hours to appear, when a novichok is supposed to kill people in minutes? And then the Russians tell us about a substance called BZ which matches the symptoms that the Skripals were alleged to have suffered, right down to the delay in the symptoms appearing.
    It’s a bloody inefficient false flag, if that’s what it is.

    • Yalt

      I think it’s the next great advance in the field of public relations.

      Convince someone of something by means of rational argument and you run the risk that they’ll ask questions and might even become unconvinced when evidence comes in on the other side.

      Convince someone of something completely absurd and they’ll fight like hell to maintain that belief because they’re emotionally, not rationally, invested in it. In a situation like this where the purpose is to entrench an emotional stance (hatred of Russia and Russians sufficiently intense to support a possible war) the flimsiness of the evidence is, if anything, a benefit.

      I’m not going to so far as to claim the flimsiness was deliberate, just that there’s no reason to avoid it. It’s on a par with the pre-election Time Magazine cover of Putin wearing a USA-flag “I voted” sticker on his lapel.

  • Sharp Ears

    One Luke Harding is listed in the Alumni column on the Atlantic College Wikipedia entry.

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

    He is also in the alumni list on the college’s website and provides a testimonial.
    https://www.atlanticcollege.org/alumni-testimonials/4

    It appears to be an extremely creepy place. One of the many Kurt Hahn United World Colleges. A world wide network.

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

    ‘In 1978, Mountbatten passed the (Atlantic College) Presidency to his great-nephew, HRH Prince Charles The Prince of Wales. The current presidents of Atlantic College are Queen Noor of Jordan, Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom, and until his death in 2013, Nelson Mandela of South Africa.’

    A sort of junior Ditchley.

    The fees are £29,500 pa basic.

    The building looks like a fortified castle.

  • Sharp Ears

    Off topic. The continuing legacy of Blair. Sadly a BBC reporter, Ahmad Shah, has been shot and killed in Khost.

    BBC reporter Ahmad Shah killed in Afghanistan attack – http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-43953322

    ‘Blair supported the foreign policy of the George W. Bush administration, and ensured that the British Armed Forces participated in the 2001 invasion of Afghanistan….’

    17 years on and the blood has never dried.

  • Tony_0pmoc

    Another excellent article on Off-Guardian

    “The League of Assad-Loving Conspiracy Theorists”

    https://off-guardian.org/2018/04/29/the-league-of-assad-loving-conspiracy-theorists/

    Just a word of warning though. I am almost certain, that tin-hats offer no protection whatsoever, except whilst cooking The Turkey on Christmas Day.

    What works, are air-bags, seat belts, crash helmets, parachutes, air tanks and masks, though I suspect that the following is positively dangerous, as is actually reading the The Guardian or watching TV to your mental and physical health.

    https://www.theguardian.com/business/2015/nov/22/the-innovators-the-lightweight-tank-that-turns-snorkellers-into-divers

    I am amazed that both our Government and Media have been taken over by a bunch of complete evil lying war-mongering psychopaths, but the evidence is extremely strong that they have.

    I suppose, I should not be that surprised because the same thing happenned in Germany in the 1930’s, and my experiences of German people, are that they are just as moral as British people, and if anything more sensible and hardworking, though sometimes, not quite sharing our sense of humour.

    This will all probably get a lot worse yet.

    It is undeniable, that the mass-brainwashing works. The main defence to it, is to not watch TV.

    Tony

    • Barden Gridge

      “The League of Assad-Loving Conspiracy Theorists” really is excellent.
      Makes you wonder why we bother trying to make sense of any of this crap.

  • Thomas_Stockmann

    SOME FURTHER THOUGHTS ON THE SUNDAY TIMES CLAIM OF UK ELECTION INTERFERENCE BY RUSSIAN BOTS

    First of all, thank you to Barden Gridge for finding a tweet by one of the data researchers, Krystina Shveda at https://twitter.com/KrystinaShveda/status/990544242484350976 about the methodology used.

    The tweet states that they used “R, Python, sentiment analysis and our own model for Twitter bots identification to sift through an exclusive 57MB dataset”. There are a number of things which are interesting about this.

    The first is that these methods are not referred to in the ST article. The ST gives the impression that the alleged bots were identified largely due to their strange, random Twitter handles (from among a larger group of tweets from Russian-language accounts created before the election). The suggestion that a model (or algorithm) was used to identify bots changes the picture. No information is given in the article as to how many of the alleged bots had these strange Twitter handles, so the significance of the algorithm is unclear. However, algorithmic methods of bot identification rely on a number of subjective assumptions which are open to question. One automated bot identification tool, used by Talavera and his colleagues as a comparator, gives probabilities that an account is a bot, reflecting this uncertainty.

    It is remarkable that an academic such as Professor Talavera has not provided even as much as a working paper explaining how the data was collected, selected and analysed. However, we can gain some idea of the probable algorithmic method used from his previous (unpublished, and not peer-reviewed) working paper about social media and the US presidential election and the Brexit referendum, co-authored with Yuriy Goridnichenko and Tho Pham: https://ideas.repec.org/p/swn/wpaper/2018-01.html Briefly, they classified accounts from their tweet sample as bots if they met one of four suspicious criteria for a majority of days. The subjective element can be seen in the criteria. For example, one is “the suspicious tweet volume relatively to the account age”. The number of tweets considered unusual is not stated, but presumably a motivated human might open a new account and make a high number of tweets just before an election or referendum.

    The second interesting thing about Shveda’s tweet is that is suggests that “sentiment analysis” was used to classify the content of the tweets. The ST article gives the impression that all the tweets were classified by human researchers. Possibly humans reviewed the output of automated classification, but without transparency about the methods the exact procedure and its impact are unclear.

    The last question concerns the collection of data. Estimates of “Russian” activity in the Brexit referendum vary widely, as noted by the article linked here:
    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/nov/15/russian-troll-factories-researchers-damn-twitters-refusal-to-share-data
    Interestingly, Professor Talavera’s estimate of that activity is comfortably the highest. Even more interesting is the data collection method he used, detailed in the working paper mentioned above. This targeted the #Brexit hashtag to collect tweets. However, since as the article notes, some of the identified accounts have since been deleted, the full account data is not available (for 90% of the cases identified as bots!). If this same methodology was used for the ST article, it explains why it refers to a sample of tweets, not a sample of accounts. However, without examining the full account activity it is hazardous to classify tweets as the work of bots or trolls. This is potentially a critical weakness in the methodology.

    If indeed the same methods were used to analyse the data for the ST article as were used in the US/Brexit working paper, the results are certainly open to question. It is highly regrettable that that paper has not (so far) passed a peer review process, and it is completely inexplicable why there is not even a working paper on the study reported by the ST.

  • bj

    Hi Craig,

    After reading your article (not having read the comments yet), I would like to bring to your attention (probably redundantly so) two articles, the first one of which I happened to read yesterday (which made me make a comment in your previous thread if McCain had colluded with Hillary vis-a-vis the Steele-dossier).

    I have not read the second article myself; the first one contains useful information (esp. on one Andrew Wood), though I think it’s written in puffed and sensationalist fashion, very slanted at times.

    Also, I think there’s a deeper link to Assange (his sudden silencing) other than just a dislike. Do we have reports from his lawyer on his well being?

    https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2017/03/how-the-explosive-russian-dossier-was-compiled-christopher-steele
    https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/donald-trump-russia-dossier-leak-sir-andrew-wood-john-mccain-british-ambassador-spy-a7524931.html

    Thanks for your efforts, from Holland
    bj

  • Petri Krohn

    WHO ARE THE PEOPLE ON THE CCTV VIDEO?

    I video came out on March 6, showing an older man and a younger woman walking towards the park bench where the Skripals were found some 15 minutes later. Shots from the video were shown on TV news worldwide. At first the people were said to be were “persons of interests” or suspects. Later everyone somehow assumed they were the Skripals. But they are not! Yulia had red hair when she left Moscow. The woman on the video is blond. Did British authorities ever confirm who they think is on the video? Or did they tell people not to look? If so, who could it possibly be that should not be named? Pablo Miller, perhaps.

    I reconstructed the information from Pablo Millers deleted LinkedIn profile using Google search and posted it and other material on him on our research site “A Closer Look On Syria”. I also managed to retrieve two photographs from his LinkedIn profile that I believe portray him. A friend suggested that the gray haired man standing in front of a tank in Miller’s photo has a strong resemblance to the man on the CCTV video.

    • Charles

      “WHO ARE THE PEOPLE ON THE CCTV VIDEO?”

      If it the blond and bloke they are certainly not the Skripals

      But

      “Witness Freya Church, 27, who later spotted the pair ‘slumped’ and ‘passed out’ on the bench, said the couple pictured in the CCTV images released today were ‘100%’ the people she saw slumped on the bench on Sunday.”

      http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5467051/Was-Russian-spy-poisoned-Zizzi.html

      So this strengthens my suspicion that the people on the bench were not the Skripals

      • Dumb Unicorn

        The Red Handbag

        Charles, that’s an interesting theory. Sometimes the earlier newspaper reports have revealing details in them because they haven’t got their stories straight yet. In the Sun on 8th March, they refer to a red handbag beside the bench as Yulia’s. “Chilling first pics of poison scene appear to show Russian spy’s daughter’s red handbag abandoned next to bench”.

        They also show the CCTV pictures you mention with the blonde woman carrying a red handbag. As you say, the Sun originally thought that Yulia was the woman in the CCTV pictures but we now know that’s not true. Either both women happened to be carrying similar sized red handbags that day (which is actually not very likely – have a look next time you’re on a high street, you won’t see many red handbags) or, the red handbag abandoned next to the bench does indeed belong to the blonde woman in the CCTV.

        If the picture of Pablo Miller which Petri identified is accurate, then the man in the CCTV could plausibly be him – they look similar enough to be the same person.

        There are a couple of explanations which may (or may not) be related to the above:
        1.) Pablo Miller and a blonde companion posed as the Skripals on the bench.
        2.) The couple on the bench were indeed the Skripals but Pablo Miller and his blonde companion met them there and the woman left behind the handbag either by accident, or as false evidence (i.e. pretending it was Yulia’s and planting some sort of evidence).

        Explanations which the MSM would prefer, but crucially haven’t reported (which makes me think they can’t be true) are:
        3.) The couple are innocent bystanders and the red handbag is actually a red herring.
        4.) The couple are still suspects and the red handbag is a key piece of evidence.

    • Al

      The link that you posted to “A Closer Look On Syria” redirects to 35th Derby (Markeaton) Scout Group.

        • Petri Krohn

          After some investigating I found out what happened. Our wiki does not work nor has ever worked over HTTPS. Nor have I ever posted https links. Craig’s site has a special security feature. It mutates every link by adding a “s” to “http”. The above corrected link became thus nonworking. You will just have to remove the “s” from the url manually.

  • giyane

    You say D notices. IMHO there appear to be A to Z notices. A is for Anthony , B is for Bush, C is for Mission Creep, D is for Donald Trump.
    M is for Mosul, definitely don’t let’s ever talk about that. it was a total blood-fest and remains to this day a stinking ruined city which is uninhabitable., waiting for new owners to stake their claims to this other corner of the Uthmani Caliphate in the Greater Israel of USUKIS.

    It’s only when you get to Earwig O that you get the joke.

  • anon,

    fyi

    https://www.bitchute.com/video/IF7ZwfM4tQQK/

    This is an absolutely stunning breaking interview of the Syrian independent member of parliament Fares Shehabi by the bbc hardtalk program. The msm typically try to aggressively browbeat non-western interviewees that they disagree with. Unfortunately, most of the interviewees either get cowed or they get emotional and angry.

    Fares Shehabi instead is factually and rationally aggressive, fact by fact, counter-argument by counter-argument, not allowing the bbc interviewer to shut him up. It is a model of how to deal with the msm.

    the msm have already managed to get the interview wiped off youtube. but it is still available here

    http://www.syrianews.cc/syrian-mp-fares-shehabi-pummels-bbc-colonialist-sackur/

    download it and upload it and torrent it everywhere you can so that they cannot wipe it off the net.

    crossposted

  • copydude

    If all this is part of the US ‘Oily Crusade’ doesn’t it rather place the UK at odds with much of the EU?

    From reading Spiegel, I’m not sure Germany is entirely on-board with the current ant-Russian pogrom. Those living a little closer to Russia and with economic ties are a little more pragmatic. It was hoped that sanctions imposed for Crimea might be lifted rather than extended.

    I spent last year in Poland which, after a wonderful summer, had a glut of apples. Sanctions have cost the agricultural countries billions in exports. There was a brief campaign to eat more apples in Poland: ‘Eat An Apple, Annoy Putin’. But I think you would have to eat around 30 kilo a week to make up the lost market.

    Tit for tat didn’t help Poland much when the US leaned on it for the missile shield. Russia closed the sea border through the Vistula lagoon, rendering the port of Elblag fairly useless. Poland has since spent ten fruitless years trying to get NATO to pay for a canal through the sandspit.

    I haven’t noticed too many people in Europe thanking the US for a ’special relationship’, they mostly just get arm-twisted.

  • Vivian O'Blivion

    Labour have suspended John Woodcock.
    Don’t get your hopes up. The charge is alleged sexual harassment.

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