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.

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967 thoughts on “Where They Tell You Not to Look

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  • geoff chambers

    My comment on the Guardian article, reposted from https://cliscep.com/2018/04/27/syria-and-conspiracy-theories/

    The author of the Guardian article was on a bursary for two months working on the foreign desk at Die Welt in Berlin two years ago. She’s a news and social affairs journalist at the Graun, she’s very young, and this is the person they’ve chosen to break the D-notice ban, or deliver the first scoop following the lifting of the ban.

    She says that Üzümcü, of the OPCW said that the amount of novichok used was significantly more than needed for research purposes; and the article follows up by quoting from the NYT article that Üzümcü said he had been told that about 50-100g of the nerve agent was thought to have been used in the attack. In other words, when Üzümcü is quoted as saying that the quantity was more than required for research purposes (which the journalist says “indicates it was likely created for use as a weapon”) he’s basing this on what he was told by the unidentified British source.

    So did Britain’s finest really swab up half a cupful of this volatile liquid with their q-tips? Expect another D-notice to descend as soon as people start asking questions.

  • Tony Ball

    So Trump and Putin taking a sauna together is, according to Harding, the ultimate proof of collusion. What a idiot!

  • Billy Bostickson

    The NY Times have now conveniently “updated’ the article to say he meant to say 5 to 10 mg not grammes.


    That was after OPCW issued a new statement:


    “In the original interview, Ahmet Üzümcü, of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, said the amount of novichok – a military-grade nerve agent developed by the Soviet Union – used was significantly more than needed for research purposes, which indicates it was likely created for use as a weapon. He described new measures to monitor production of the nerve agent. Mr. Uzumcu said that countries that are signatories to the Chemical Weapons Convention — like Russia, the United States and the United Kingdom — would be required to declare production or stockpiling of the agent, one of a strain known as novichok. However, he said that countries producing the chemical for research purposes would produce about one-10th the amount used in the attack.”

    What does this retraction say about Ahmet Uzumcu’s argument regarding the amounts allowed for research purposes under OPCW regulations? (the reason for the interview i assume)

    According to the OPCW regulations I have seen, they seem to state up to 100g per year is allowed for research purposes (without need to report to OPCW) for Schedule 1 chemicals:


    and http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=

    Is the Turk just a blabbermouth in need of a bastinado from his superiors or is there something more revealing about his error?

    Was it an attempt to sabotage or preempt some kind of upcoming OPCW resolution?

    • Tatyana

      The more information comes on the Skripal’s case, the stronger I feel like I’m watching a live show.
      As if they make another twist in scenario and observe which is gathering more rank points, and which are not popular at all.
      It would be so nice of British Government not to make any statements before the investigation is complete!

      • Paul Barbara

        @ Tatyana May 4, 2018 at 19:37
        Since when has the British Government been ‘nice’? If you want a ‘nice’ (truthful, non-belligerant, non-warmongering) Government, pray for a Corbyn victory.
        British forces have been in hostilities every single day since the first day of WWI (‘History Thieves’ by Ian Cobain).

    • geoff chambers

      “… or is there something more revealing about his error?”
      As I said above:
      Could it be that Üzümcü is being rather clever here? The OPCW is not allowed to attribute blame, but there’s nothing to stop them pointing out culpable incompetence, and a blatant attempt to influenced their investigation.

      No-one could believe that the head of the OPCW doesn’t know his mgs from his grams. He makes it clear in the Guardian quote from the NYT article that he’s quoting his source when he speaks of 50-100 gms. Surely he queried that? How could the authorities not know that half a cupful of nerve agent swilling round Salisbury would wipe out a quarter of the population? Or does Porton Down still work in pints and fluid ounces?

      Any enquiry will exonerate Üzümcü and point the finger at his source. Üzümcü couldn’t do that himself, but by making his prima facie absurd claim public, he’s made further investigation inevitable.

      • Radar O’Reilly

        I have almost been in this situation, whilst a teenager I developed a love for chemistry, not complex organic but exothermic , fireworks, entertainment.

        I finally synthesized tri – nitro – glycerin one day, in the garden shed , wow – what an achievement for a spotty youth. Reality dawned, I had 50 – 100 grammes of ultra sensitive explosive. Totally useless, unless your name was Alfred Nobel. I had no keilsghur to hand , so I never invented dynamite. What next?

        If only I’d conceived of a false flag , or if I’d made 5mg instead of 100 grammes, thankfully this was all way before the UK PoTA prevention of terrorism act 1974, so I never did anything illegal – just unwise!

        At least I stayed away from the organic-chem that has led porton-down and all its experts so terribly astray, NBC/CBRN that gives Russians a headache! The Chem-Weapon equivalent of shooting yourself in the foot!!, at home, screwing your home town – on the whim of foreign agents or worse, politicos.

        Not cool. Then someone nerdy notices that 100 grammes would kill everyone. And there are only two Russians with headaches and a lost squirrel. So downsize to five milligrammes of non-traditional-agent. Can make up a new story tomorrow.

        What did I do with my 100g of trinitroglicerine C3H5N3O9? Any guesses?

        • Paul Barbara

          @ Radar O’Reilly May 4, 2018 at 22:53
          Very similar experience, except I not only acquired kieselguhr, I made not only dynamite, but also nitro-cellulose, which when soaked in nitroglycerine makes a ‘plastique’ explosive.
          And yes, I did set them off, with a home-made detonator, lead azide. The noise they made convinced me that safe-blowing was not my forte. But a simple alternative to a home-made detonator (these days one would come under intense scrutiny accessing precursor chemicals) is any bullet, which of course has a detonator.
          Electrical or percussion detonation can easily be worked out
          All of the information needed was (and still is) available in the Encyclopedia Britannica).
          And I’m not even Russian!
          I was disgusted the other day, in my local, when the Guvnor refused to make me a Molotov Cocktail (actually, he said I would have to enjoy it outside!).

        • Paul Barbara

          @ Radar O’Reilly May 4, 2018 at 22:53
          And if it was a cince in the 1950’s and early ’60’s (that’s my time scale) it’s a damn site easier now; just grow a beard, and sign up as a Jihadi poxie (sorry, proxy) mercenary for the West’s ‘Regime Change’ thugs, and then just use the state-of-the-art weaponry and explosives for your own purposes.
          I might have tried it myself, except I’m too well known by all the major Intel agencies, left, right and centre (if there is a centre).
          And it is a wee bit hairy making nitroglycerine – it overheated once, and spewed out copious noxious brown fumes: luckily it didn’t explode; I ran off into the garden, realising something had gone haywire. Needless to say, if it had blown, I’d have been a goner (not a ‘Gooner’, which is a completely different kettle of fish).

      • Paul Barbara

        @ geoff chambers May 4, 2018 at 21:35
        Bit of a stretch. Just a ‘position’ for someone who has been put up for a nicely-paid ‘job’, by whomever, and totally in ‘somebodies’ pocket.

      • Billy Bostickson

        Thanks! Another possibility is he deliberately gave that interview at that time to create a media buzz that would draw attention away from the breaking news about the Czech production of Novichok?


  • Paul Barbara

    The one important thing here is, are we going to allow the Western warmongering gits to pull another ‘False Flag’ attack/hoax in Syria, leading to yet more totally illegal bombardments of a Sovereign country?:
    Of course, there is little we can do, as Stop the War HQ is so heavily infiltrated. If they weren’t, and really DID want to stop wars, they would recognise ‘False Flag’ ops when they see them, and react when Syrian Intel says one is on the way, proactively, not ‘after the event’.
    It is important to publicise, as best we can, through our contacts, that a ‘False Flag’ attack/hoax is imminent in Syria, so we are at least able to say, ‘we told you so’, not that that is adequate.

    • Sharp Ears

      Reminder that the US 6th Fleet’s aircraft carrier Harry S Truman is standing by in Gaeta.

      .’The strike group consists of the guided-missile cruiser USS Normandy and the guided-missile destroyers USS Farragut, USS Forrest Sherman, USS Bulkeley, and USS Arleigh Burke. Two others, USS Jason Dunham and USS The Sullivans, will rejoin the strike group at a later date. German destroyer FGS Hessen is added to the Truman strike group.

      The fleet, with more than 8,000 men on board, has an enormous firepower. The Truman – a supercarrier 300 meters long, equipped with two nuclear reactors – can launch 90 fighters and helicopters in consecutive waves. Its strike group, supplemented by 4 destroyers already in the Mediterranean and some submarines, can launch over 1,000 cruise missiles.’

      Video: The Art of War: US Fleet with 1000 Missiles in the Mediterranean

      Satan is restless is his dank, dank and slimy cave.

    • Tony

      Mirzayanov did not have clearance to do R&D on binary agents, so unlikely Uglev possessed such clearance.

    • Billy Bostickson

      Thanks, Igor, he seems ambivalent towards Uglev, sometimes praising him, sometimes criticizing him.

      By the way, great resource and a very good library you have there!

  • Billy Bostickson

    He recalled the words of the British officer Lawrence of Arabia: “Britain’s interests are to make the Arabs kill Arabs in British interests.” Today, he said, this is done in the interests of the United States.

  • Doodlebug

    This may be a statement of the bleedin’ obvious, but the MSM is clearly and demonstrably pursuing an official line with regard to the Salisbury incident. Unfortunately it is not quite that obvious for very many people who hang on their every word.

    For at least an instance of latest news of the Skripals I follow a link to the Independent and its ‘Chemical Weapons Watchdog report where I notice a previous item: ‘Details of Russian spying on Skripals revealed in Nato letter.

    What’s that? A letter referring to ‘intel’ gathered by Nato?

    Well, no. The title of the piece when brought forth is: ‘Details of Russian spying on Skripals revealed in letter from UK to Nato’. with the sub-heading: ‘It is highly likely that the Russian intelligence services view at least some of its defectors as legitimate targets for assassination’

    Opening sentence, and all is revealed: ‘Russian intelligence agencies were spying on Sergei and Yulia Skripal for at least five years before they were targeted with a nerve agent, Britain has said.’

    So we have a deliberately misleading headline drawing attention to an article that heralds an opinion based upon supposition, followed by the fact that the piece is discussing Mark Sedwill’s official narrative addressed to Nato – nothing to do with Nato offering any advice whatsoever.

    This is deceit pure and simple. It is exactly the kind of linguistic massaging that went on during the finalization of the Iraq dossier passed up the food chain to Tony Blair – and we all know what that led to.

  • Sharp Ears

    All Jeremy Corbyn needs today is BLiar Mk!!, Alastair Campbell, standing outside the TUC HQ, saying that Labour is a long way from power.

    The critter has just been live on Sky News.

    Alastair Campbell: Labour is a long way from power under Jeremy Corbyn
    Tony Blair’s former spin doctor says Labour “doesn’t deserve to be in the game” if the party cannot beat the Conservatives.

    He now has a widow’s peak which makes him look even more devilish.

    The Labour party is actually much closer to power without him and his master and the acolytes.

  • Simon

    comment from BattyBetty 4/5/18 Independent article on opcw head withdrawing opinion that 100 g of.novichok used to poison Skriples
    comment was deleted, as were all, all, like-minded comments —

    “OK here’s the plot or 6th form Panto as I prefer to call it, up to date.

    2015 former MI6 agent Christopher Steele’s private company ‘Orbis’ is employed by the US republican party to dig the dirt on Trump. Steele employs former MI6 agent Pablo Miller and former MI6 Russian Spy Sergie Skripal. They start digging the dirt and putting together the ‘Golden Shower Dossier’. Trump then wins the nomination so Hilary Clinton employs Steele Miller and Skripal in the same capacity. But Trump wins the election!

    3 days after Trump’s inauguration the head of the UK governments GCCHQ spy centre Robert Hannigan resigns giving a full 6 hours notice, yes that is SIX HOURS, he’s gone! (we know that for a former MI5/MI6 agent to set up shop in a private capacity they will always check each job is acceptable to the British state so MI6 and GCHQ would have been notified about the Golden Shower Dossier and must have given their approval).

    11 months later and a new head of the UK governments top chemical, biological and nuclear research centre at Porton Down takes over, former mobile phone salesman Gary Aitkenhead. 9 weeks after his arrival the UK holds its largest ever chemical warfare exercises which run from 12th February to 4th March.

    Skripals poisoned on 4th March. So we’re first told that Yulia had smuggled the novichok into the UK and there was a trail, then we were told it was a powder and was in the Skripal car ventilation system, then we were told it was liquid form and on the door handle.

    So lets go with the governments 3rd option the door handle. They both close the door together and are infected. They don’t have breathing problems by the time they reach the car (which is the symptoms of novichok), they instead drive into the centre of town, go for a wander, then for a few drinks in a pub, then to a restaurant for a meal, where they meet up with Pablo Miller, then they are seen walking through the shopping mall on the CCTV. Then 68 meters later they are found on the park bench. DetectiveSargeant Bailey, who happens to be passing by, assists them yet is immediately overcome himself and collapses and is taken into hospital with the Skripals. A passing doctor who stopped and administered first aid was not contaminated. By the evening of the 4th all three are in comas in the ITU. Yet DS Bailey manages in his comatosed state to be one of the first police to enter the Skripal house (this was put out in order to shore up the 3rd version of poisoning, the door handle.

    On 5th March the UK government slap a D-Notice on the UK press blocking them from outing the name of Skripal’s handler Pablo Miller, that is their first act after the poisoning, this has been leaked by Alex Thomson of Channel 4 news.

    DS Bailey makes an miraculous recovery and leaves hospital by a back entrance and a statement is read out on his behalf, he is never seen or heard of again. Yulia makes a miraculous recovery, phones her cousin in Russia and says she will be discharging herself soon and coming back, and Dad’s fine he’s just sleeping, but she too leaves the hospital by a back entrance and has a statement read out on her behalf, never to be seen or heard of again. Sergei is still in the hospital unless he too has left by a back entrance.

    The death toll is two guinea pigs and a cat which starve to death. The cat would have howled continuosly, alarmingly and very loudly for several days before it died. It is inconceivable that the police guarding the property did not hear and report it. When they are dead the cat and two guinea pigs are immediately taken to Porton Down and incinerated, and any possible forensic evidence destroyed

    150 Russian Embassy staff expelled throughout the world, Russia accused of using chemical weapons on European soil first time since WWI, Russia vilified prior to hosting the football World Cup. And not one sliver of evidence to suggest Russia was behind this. [please copy this and re-post as the government trolls will flag it].”

    • Doodlebug

      That’s the top and bottom of it.

      According to Tony Blair, once upon a time….”I mean people should realize, when we’re talking about chemical and biological agents, we’re not just talking about, you know, washing powders and detergents”.

      Tell that to NHS England.

    • Tony

      The question for me is why would the assassins use novichock in a form that it was not intended to be used, liquid. Whereas VX is very effective when coming into contact with skin

      • Doodlebug

        “The question for me is why would the assassins use novichock…”

        It has yet to be irrefutably demonstrated that they did.

        • Tony

          Given what is known the rational explanation is that the substance used, Novichok, has been designed non toxic . Sort of a test sample that would be used for example to determine the effectiveness of ppe

  • nevermind

    Excellent, Luke Harding should be challenged at every talk he gives in Public.
    It is scoundrels like him who are responsible for the state truth speakers find themselves in. An old fashioned public flogging, followed by 48 hrs. in the stocks would be an appropriate right wing response to his fairy tales.

  • MaryPaul

    increasingly frustrated by the lack of news on all the topics I am following: Skripals, OPCW in Douma/White Helmets, Glushkov. Assume all smothered under D notices. Anyone know if there is anything in the French press? my French is pretty good.

  • Doodlebug

    Stop press!

    The ‘clean up’ that was to take weeks, if not months is suddenly over.


    The only remaining ‘hotspot’ is the Skripals’ own house. Does that suggest we infer plan A – that the house represents the source of the contamination? If so, then we’re once again faced with the interpretive dilemma as regards the (3 hour!!) interval of time between the pair leaving said address and their evincing distress on the public bench.

    The Telegraph then proceeds to play a numbers game on behalf of the authorities: *400 police officers – including some 250 counter-terrorism specialists…Officers continue to trawl through over 5,000 hours of CCTV and examine over 1,350 exhibits that have been seized. Around 500 witnesses have been identified and hundreds of statements have been taken.”

    A sure sign the’ investigation’ is a cover-up. Less than 1 hour’s CCTV footage is required to elucidate this case, never mind 5000!

    The piece rounds off by repeating the false report laid at the door of OPCW chief Ahmet Uzumcu (100 grams of ‘high purity’ material, unaffected by the weather). Yeah, right. And now, suddenly, it’s ‘back to work everyone’?

    This affair stinks more conspicuously than Billingsgate.

    • Doodlebug

      It looks as though officialdom doesn’t know if it’s coming or going.

      According to the Telegraph earlier: “Parts of the Wiltshire city have been locked behind police cordons for more than two months as officers and soldiers worked to gather evidence and clean up areas affected by the Novichok nerve agent.” (n.b. ‘to gather evidence AND clean up).

      Now the Guardian https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2018/may/08/salisbury-attack-police-continue-examine-home-sergei-skripal has joined in with: “Detectives are continuing to carry out investigative work on the house of the former Russian spy Sergei Skripal more than two months after the nerve agent attack on him and his daughter, Yulia.

      “All other sites related to the attack in Salisbury have been released by the police for decontamination to take place, a cabinet meeting was told on Tuesday.”

      According to the Telegraph, the cordons have been lifted following decontamination. For the Guardian, however, they have been lifted to allow it.

      Have Telegraph readers in Salisbury been placed at risk therefore, or are Guardian readers being kept on the alert unnecessarily?

      • Keith McClary

        “Detectives are continuing to carry out investigative work on the house …”
        This is the house that was locked up for days while the pets starved? Why does it now need investigating?

  • Sandra

    According to the Daily Mail, 18 March, Yulia used to work in the information centre of the U.S. Embassy in Moscow and ‘this is thought to have angered her boyfriend’s mother who was not pleased her son was dating the daughter of Mr Skripal.’ It is not clear from my reading if this information came from Yulia’s cousin, Victoria. However, the article goes on to say that the embassy has no record of Ms Skripal ever working there.

    • Doodlebug

      Thank you for sharing the link. The information is literally intriguing. The author (Huber) himself is careful to point out the peril of placing too much emphasis on correlations though, which should never be construed as causal indices without further analysis/evidence. Nevertheless the extent and depth of these ‘intelligence networks’ is not something that is readily appreciated, for the obvious reason that they derive from highly secretive enterprises. The unflattering photograph of Sir Richard Dearlove portrays him as a dog from the same kennel as Dick Cheney – unscrupulous to a fault.

      Personally I believe the possibility that MI6 were at least conversant with, if not party to, an attempt to discredit Trump, to be very real; equally the possibility that Segei Skripal was an operative at the end of one of the tentacles. With the government’s clear intention to malign Russia in mind, taking him (SS) out would be a win-win gambit. After all, how could TM ever again come across all ‘buddy, buddy’ with the Donald’ should it be established that MI6 had been cheerleading a character assassination attempt. Some kind of ‘special relationship that would be.

      • RAC

        I would have no difficulty at all in believing that the UK had been involved in some kind of dirty work to prevent Trump being elected. Nor would it be beyond imagination that when President Trump surprised his opponents the dirty work was tidied up as discretely as possible. If the U.S. knows about this which is very probable, and the dirty work was done by, or claimed to be done by rogue elements, the U.S. may be keeping quiet to avoid embarrassing a one time ally.

  • Doodlebug

    Thank you ‘PasserBy’. May and here minions in government have gone so far out on a limb with their story that should they come clean or continue the cover-up it’s highly likely to end badly either way.

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