Yulia Skripal Is Plainly Under Duress 777

Only the Russians have allowed us to hear the actual voice of Yulia Skripal, in that recorded conversation with her cousin. So the one thing we know for certain is that, at the very first opportunity she had, she called back to her cousin in Russia to let her know what is going on. If you can recall, until the Russians released that phone call, the British authorities were still telling lies that Sergei was in a coma and Yulia herself in a serious condition.

We do not know how Yulia got to make the call. Having myself been admitted unconscious to hospital on several occasions, each time when I came to I found my mobile phone in my bedside cabinet. Yulia’s mobile phone plainly had been removed from her and not returned. Nor had she been given an official one – she specifically told her cousin that she could not call her back on that phone as she had it temporarily. The British government could have given her one to keep on which she could be called back, had they wished to help her.

The most probable explanation is that Yulia persuaded somebody else in the hospital to lend her a phone, without British officials realising. That would explain why the first instinct of the British state and its lackey media was to doubt the authenticity of the call. It would explain why she was able to contradict the official narrative on their health, and why she couldn’t get a return call. It would, more importantly, explain why her family has not been able to hear her voice since. Nor has anybody else.

It strikes me as inherently improbable that, when Yulia called her cousin as her first act the very moment she was able, she would now issue a formal statement through Scotland Yard forbidding her cousin to be in touch or visit. I simply do not believe this British Police statement:

“I was discharged from Salisbury District Hospital on the 9th April 2018. I was treated there with obvious clinical expertise and with such kindness, that I have found I missed the staff immediately.
“I have left my father in their care, and he is still seriously ill. I too am still suffering with the effects of the nerve agent used against us.
“I find myself in a totally different life than the ordinary one I left just over a month ago, and I am seeking to come to terms with my prospects, whilst also recovering from this attack on me.
“I have specially trained officers available to me, who are helping to take care of me and to explain the investigative processes that are being undertaken. I have access to friends and family, and I have been made aware of my specific contacts at the Russian Embassy who have kindly offered me their assistance in any way they can. At the moment I do not wish to avail myself of their services, but, if I change my mind I know how to contact them.
“Most importantly, I am safe and feeling better as time goes by, but I am not yet strong enough to give a full interview to the media, as I one day hope to do. Until that time, I want to stress that no one speaks for me, or for my father, but ourselves. I thank my cousin Viktoria for her concern for us, but ask that she does not visit me or try to contact me for the time being. Her opinions and assertions are not mine and they are not my father’s.
“For the moment I do not wish to speak to the press or the media, and ask for their understanding and patience whilst I try to come to terms with my current situation.”

There is also the very serious question of the language it is written in. Yulia Skripal lived part of her childhood in the UK and speaks good English. But the above statement is in a particular type of formal, official English of a high level which only comes from a certain kind of native speaker.

“At the moment I do not wish to avail myself of their services” – wrote no native Russian speaker, ever.

Nor are the rhythms or idioms such as would in any way indicate a translation from Russian. Take “I thank my cousin Viktoria for her concern for us, but ask that she does not visit me or try to contact me for the time being. Her opinions and assertions are not mine and they are not my father’s.” Not only is this incredibly cold given her first impulse was to phone her cousin, the language is just wrong. It is not the English Yulia would write and it is awkward to translate into Russian, thus not a natural translation from it.

To put it plainly, as someone who has much experience of it, the English of the statement is precisely the English of an official in the UK security services and precisely not the English of somebody like Yulia Skripal or of a natural translation from Russian.

Yulia is, of course, in protective custody “for her own safety”. At the very best, she is being psychologically force-fed the story about the evil Russian government attempting to poison her with the doorknob, and she is being kept totally isolated from any influence that may reinforce any doubts she feels as to that story. There are much worse alternatives involving threat or the safety of her father. But even at the most benevolent reading of the British authorities’ actions, Yulia Skripal is being kept incommunicado, and under duress.

777 thoughts on “Yulia Skripal Is Plainly Under Duress

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  • BrianFujisan

    Total Fabrication..A child could see it a mile away

    And they expect us to believe this
    And they expect us to believe the Poisoning Fabrications
    And they expect us to believe Assad just used Chemical Weapons
    And they expecy us to believe that Striking Syria would be the Moral thing to do
    And they expect us to believe Russia wont be a Problem
    And…. I can see Faslane from my house…..Better Go and Visit the Doune the Rabbit Hole Post

    • CanSpeccy

      And they expect us to believe this“

      No not you Brian. Britain is a democracy, right? That means they don’t have to persuade or any of the people who visit blogs like this, just the mass of ordinary people who read the Daily Mail, etc. And according to the polls, they are correct in their expectation.

  • N_

    I have specially trained officers available to me, who are helping to take care of me and to explain the investigative processes that are being undertaken.”

    “I have access to friends and family“.

    “I have been made aware of my specific contacts at the Russian Embassy who have kindly offered me their assistance

    “At the moment I do not wish to avail myself of their services

    “I thank my cousin Viktoria for her concern for us, but ask that she does not visit me or try to contact me for the time being. Her opinions and assertions are not mine and they are not my father’s.

    This is state official talk. In particular, terms such as “made aware”, “specially trained officers”, “explain the investigative processes” and “opinion and assertions” are police phrases used by officers who have been trained to make a formal record that ticks boxes, treats the person they are talking about in an objective fashion, and covers their behinds (which is related to ticking boxes). Yulia Skripal may have had an influence on some of the items in this statement (I will come to that in a moment), but it sounds as though it was essentially a matter of “here you go – sign this”.

    Why does she need police (or any other kind of) “officers” to “take care” of her? What are these so-called investigative processes and why is their explanation such a big deal? She has, so we are told, been the victim of an attack with a poisonous substance. She will be asked what she has witnessed. She can answer if she wishes, and if she does answer she can have a consular official present at the questioning if she wishes. Her passport of course is the property of the Russian government.

    “Access to friends and family” sounds great. Any normal person would wish to contact someone. And any well-meaning person who reads her statement doesn’t want to hear that she has “access” to them but that she has actually had contact with them. Has she? Where the basic need for human kindness is concerned any normal person would not wish to rely exclusively on their memories of nurses and other staff who were nice to them at the hospital they have now left. You would want family members, or if no family is available then your friends, not police officers whether “specially trained” or otherwise, to help you with basic human needs such as making sure you have clothes, toiletries, and of course familiar human contact, preferably face-to-face.

    The British media have repeatedly stated that Yulia Skripal was “targeted” without speculating why. “Targeted” means that those who ordered the operation specifically wanted to cause her injury or death. If you read between the lines of the reports and commentary, the ostensible reason would be that the Russian government wished to murder both her and her father, a man they let out of prison years ago, in order to make a point to hordes of other GRU and other Russian agencies’ officers who might otherwise be tempted to follow Sergei Skripal and become traitors. That point would be “If you try to do a Skripal, we’ll kill you and we’ll kill any family members who come to visit you in your adopted country too.” That strikes me as extremely unlikely as a motive. Even before he underwent the incident in Salisbury, Sergei may well have regretted his treachery. Let us recall that he spent six years in prison – not exactly a bowl of cherries in any person’s life.

    Those who are more familiar with Russia and its history and culture (who probably don’t include many British police officers) will know that in these current times, of imminent major war, which are far more akin to 1941 than 1991, the number of émigré Russians hitherto separated from the motherland who come back to the fold is likely to exceed by far the number currently loyal to the state who decide to betray it. Many who have one foot on both sides and who are in a position in which they must make a choice will decide to choose Russia.

    Here are two places where I think Yulia Skripal may have had an influence on what the police induced her to sign:

    1) The word “kindly” probably satisfied British officialdom as a sneer word, as did the modifying phrase “at the moment” and the bureaucratic phrase “avail myself of their services”, but she may have insisted that she did not want to say anything that narrowed her options or that ruled out contacting her consulate in the future, perhaps even the very near future. This is the meaning of the words “at the moment”. She also makes it clear that she has not applied for asylum. You cannot reasonably simultaneously apply for asylum and retain the option of getting consular assistance from the country you want asylum from.

    2) Her saying that she “(thanks)” her cousin for her concern, followed by the cold words that follow, probably also satisfied the Nazi truth dentists who typically populate British officialdom. But here too there are words that don’t permanently shut the door, namely “for the time being”.

    You have to wonder what is going on with Viktoria Skripal. That Yulia called her before, possibly thereby saving her father’s life and her own (clever girl), suggests that she has at least a reasonably good relationship with her cousin and certainly not one where she entirely distrusts her. So if she does not wish Viktoria to visit her, yet she has “access” to her family, then why not call Viktoria and tell her privately? If someone records the call and releases it without permission I appreciate that that would be annoying, but on top of everything she has been through so far it doesn’t score very high on the scale.

    The key point to remember is that her father remains in hospital. If Yulia puts one foot out of line, the poshboys could send Sergei offski, permanently.

      • Clark

        You start italics with a “less than” symbol, ie. a left-pointing pointy bracket, then “em” (short for “emphasis”), and then a “greater than” or right-pointing pointy bracket – four characters in total.

        Then continue with the text you want in italics.

        Finally, end italics as above, but with “forward-slash em” between the pointy brackets. Substitute “b” and “/b” for bold, or “strike” and “/strike” to do crossed out text. These arrangements within pointy brackets are called “html tags”; you can look them up. Make sure you close the effect with /whatever it was.

    • Dennis Revell


      Hmmm; May be Yulia’s concerned that if Victoria visits her in the UK, then she also will succumb as the victim of a mysterious chemical agent, with it being immediately obvious that that too would have to be the work of the evil Russian State …

      … Oh, wait … Viktoria’s in Russia RIGHT NOW


    • N_

      A third bit over which she may have had some influence is where she says she may “give a full interview” later. If she’s well enough to leave hospital, and to have “investigative processes” explained to her, she can’t be that far off being well enough to give an interview now. She may be sending the message “I wanted to give a press conference or filmed interview and they wouldn’t let me”.

      Or she may be thinking of book rights. But that’s probably too cynical – I expect she’s thinking of her father and also her grandmother and her fiancé (or ex-fiancé) in Moscow.

      • WJ

        “She and her father are said to have been poisoned in a ‘domestic’ dispute and the disappearance of fiancé Vikeev has added to the mystery.”

        Oops! I guess we can bring back all those Russian diplomats now. Though it would be awkward, seeing as we are just about to start WWIII anyway!

      • WJ

        This is assuming of course that the “source close to Yulia” isn’t just entirely made up, and this back-down story just a way of keeping people from asking questions about Yulia’s actual present condition. Supposing it’s true, it demonstrates criminal incompetency on the part of the British government, sure, but nobody remembers that now anyhow. It was like two weeks ago or something!!

      • IM

        Caption under one of the pictures “Yulia Skripal, left, and her father Sergei, right, share a drink before they were poisoned”

        Obvious question: given that they are BOTH IN THAT PICTURE, (a) who took that picture, and (b) who subsequently shared it with DM?..

        • IM

          and hold on, so they were poisoned after that drink and not by the door handle now?.. Just really can’t keep up with the… “narrative”…

      • Yeah, Right

        I read that article as misinformation to explain why the British are not allowing Yulia to contact her fiancé.

        Someone has fed that to the Daily Mail and, good stenographers that they are, they’re repeated it.

  • Dave Lawton

    Ronald Maddison died a horrible death in 45 minutes. No one yet has been charged.

    “Maddison’s father told the family that if he told them what he knew they would “put him in the Tower”. The Ministry of Defence paid Maddison’s father £16 for the undertaker; £4 for catering and £20 for black clothes. The value put on his life was seemingly very cheap.”

    “In the years to 1970, scientists at Porton Down appear to have woefully failed to observe the Nuremberg code for human experimentation or to ensure that Prior Informed Consent (PIC) was obtained from the volunteers.
    But Operation Antler could go further. After another volunteer, Gordon Bell, contacted the force about his treatment, Wiltshire police are now investigating alleged criminal activities at Porton Down which include murder, manslaughter and “administering noxious substances”. And the buck may not stop with the scientists involved, but go all the way to the top, to a succession of defence ministers who may themselves face criminal charges.”

  • Gina Deen

    If the Russians had wanted to kill them both, they would be dead. Corbyn was right to ask for more details, more information, before blaming anyone. ‘Oh it must be Russia’? Why? They could have killed them when they were in Russia. The whole situation is highly dubious. I do not trust our security services and particularly our delusional government led by someone who seems to want to rush the UK into war. Or was it to ‘save us’ from those dreadful Russians? The whole thing leaves a lot more questions than answers.

    • lysias

      What reason is there for believing that they are still alive? Would an animal-loving Brit protected from legal consequences who has killed three animals hesitate to kill a couple of inconvenient Russians?

  • james

    thanks craig.. i think you are in the ballpark with your interpretation of this….. i think you are bang on to think m16 are keeping yulia incommunicado and under duress… nothing else explains this and it is the conclusion one has to make…

    so the intel community dropped the ball with skripals being poisoned by novichok’s and now this… it is in keeping with everything we have learned about the uk goverment and officials and nothing has changed to date..

  • Mano

    I don’t think it would be at all strange for someone under such a bright spotlight to ask a native speaker to help her with her English when drafting a statement like this, so I don’t find this aspect of it very interesting on its own. I would expect a statement like this to sound very official whether it was made under duress or not.

    As for her cousin, perhaps Yulia chose this method of communicating with her because she was disturbed by having their phone call recorded and broadcast without her consent, and because she wanted the media to listen to her cousin less because she feels irritated that Viktoria is saying things about her and her father that she has no right to say. This would be the charitable interpretation.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if Yulia was asked by UK officials to respond to certain concerns expressed by Russian officials about her treatment in the hands of the British. That could be in the interests of providing clarity or it could be pure propaganda. It’s very hard to tell.

    • N_

      As for her cousin, perhaps Yulia chose this method of communicating with her because she was disturbed by having their phone call recorded and broadcast without her consent, and because she wanted the media to listen to her cousin less because she feels irritated that Viktoria is saying things about her and her father that she has no right to say. This would be the charitable interpretation.

      It’s more likely that Yulia is highly relieved that the phone call was broadcast.

      She may perhaps be irritated by some of what Viktoria is doing, such as the information she gave the media about the money from the house sale in Britain. But the less direct communication there is between them, the more risk there is that they act at cross-purposes.

      Viktoria is looking after Yelena, Sergei’s elderly mother. I don’t think there is any way that Yulia is going to want to restrict Sergei’s ability to hear news about his mother. Viktoria could see Yelena and then be at Sergei’s bedside a matter of hours later. Then she could see Sergei a couple of times and after the last time she could be back with Yelena in a few more hours. She has been talking with him every two weeks and I would imagine that their main topic of conversation has been the wellbeing of his mother.

      Unless anyone comes up with an alternative explanation, it strikes me as very likely that Yulia’s visit to her father in Britain was precisely in connection with his mother!

      How about the possibility that Sergei wanted to return to Russia?

      • Paul

        That phone call may have saved their lives.

        Russian embassy: writ of habeas corpus? As I understand it, Russian right of access is not superseded by the wishes of citizen that the consular officials want to speak to.

    • Yonatan

      There was a second cat. It escaped. How? By leaping on the door handle to open the door!? OMG, there may be a Novichoked cat roaming the streets of Salisbury. Given the official approach seems to be to destroy anything that could possibly be contaminated, I guess all we can do is nuke Salisbury from orbit.

  • Regis

    Could a legal challenge to Yulia’s treatment by the UK authorities be mounted through the courts? I’m not a British citizen, so not familiar with the judicial system, but surely in the country of habeas corpus what the government is doing to her must be indefensible.

    I’m sure many people would be happy to contribute towards the legal cost (I certainly would).

  • justguessing

    Looks like May is taking a leaf out of Mggie’s great friend Pinochet (and mass murder’s) book and “disappearing” inconvenient people.

    What kind of monsters are running the country! May is without doubt as extreme a Right-winger as they come.

    Whoever gave Yulia a phone deserves a Nobel prize.

  • N_

    The Daily Mail are running a story on Yulia Skripal’s fiancé, Stepan Vikeev.

    In it they quote “a source close to Yulia Skripal”. WTF?

    Said source is quoted as saying “She wants to be reassured he wasn’t part of the plot against her father” and “She is confused but thinks she was collateral damage in the attack. She can’t see him or speak to him to discuss matters. She’s upset and fearful she may never see him again.”

    Oh? Why can’t she speak to him?

    And note that if she was “collateral damage” then she cannot have been “targeted”. It’s one or the other.

    Yulia’s cousin, Viktoria Skripal, 45, today said the dramatic MailOnline revelation strengthened her belief that the attack on the Skripals was linked to Yulia’s engagement.

    She has previously referred to Vikeev as ‘strange’.

    ‘I am well and truly at a loss to understand Stepan’s behaviour,’ she said. ‘I am shocked and upset at the lack of contact from him. I cannot understand how someone who calls himself her fiancé has left her in this most difficult situation and not tried to get in touch with her – or us.’

    She added: ‘The only person trying to get in touch with Yulia is me. I hoped he would be by my side, or even in front of me, trying to reach her. I have said before that her behaviour is deeply suspicious.

    ‘This is precisely why I believe a ‘domestic’ version explains what happened here – not something bigger. I know journalists have been trying to reach him and his friends. I have tried and failed. He has gone to ground.’

    She added: ‘I know Russian police are trying to find him to my knowledge without success. Russian and foreign journalists have been looking for his mother – but failed. I cannot find how to reach her.’

    Today, Viktoria Skripal mounted a one-person protest outside the British Embassy in Moscow to demand the British Government issue her a visa to see her family members in England.

    Russians are forbidden from holding larger protests without special permission. It comes as the poisoned spy’s housebound mother, Yelena Skripal, 89, gave an interview in support of her neice’s (sic) demand.”

    It is Viktoria who is looking after Yelena.

    Has Sergei really said he doesn’t want to hear from Yelena in person at the moment about his mother? FFS! I don’t believe that those are his wishes. Some of these media editors haven’t got a fucking clue about Russia.

      • BarrieJ

        To be fair, for many the British Government’s reputation crashed and burned years ago.
        My late grandfather born in the 1860s fought in both Boer Wars and the Third Burma War (1885), despite being orphaned at 10 and barely literate at the time, he knew the reasons he was in both conflicts had absolutely nothing to do with what they were told.
        Curiously the Third Burma War was also about regime change…
        ‘In addition, the British deceived the Burmese (including U Kaung) by their propaganda that they did not intend to occupy the country for long, but only to depose the king Thibaw and enthrone Prince Nyaungyan (an elder half-brother of Thibaw) as the new king. At that time, most of the Burmese did not like Thibaw both because of the poor management of his government and because he and/or his king-makers had executed nearly a hundred royal princes and princesses when he ascended the throne in 1878. Nyaungyan was a survivor of this royal massacre and was living in exile in British India although in fact he was already dead at the time of this war. However, the British concealed the fact, and according to some sources the British even brought a man impersonating Prince Nyaungyan along with them on their way to Mandalay so that the Burmese would believe their story of installing a new king.’
        Burma was annexed by the British on 1 January 1886. Critics of the war consider the timing of the annexation to be strong proof of what the British motives really were. But the annexation was only the beginning of an insurgency which would last until 1896.
        Seems not a lot changes where GB PLC is concerned.

  • Owen Tierney

    I totally agree with the above ,this whole thing stinks and I don’t believe the statement came from her . She is a prisoner of the UK M6 and I fear for her safety long term ,as ,if she ever were to get free this whole thing could blow up in the faces of the UK security services .

    • Herbie

      The fact that the UK govt has silenced the Skripals, and forever it seems, is certainly worth a few questions.

      I was expecting them to emerge with some anti-Putin story, but no.

      They just disappear.

      The whole unfolding now looks like back-management of previous error.

      And then there’s the western war crimes in Syria to be thinking about.

      The only way through all the contradictions now popping up is a bit of a war tension kinda thing.

      As more and more of your deceptions are exposed you’re left with fewer an fewer choices.

      A bit cornered.

      Is the funny money mob.

  • Inspector Ploddington (Ploddington of the Met)

    Dear Sir,

    I have to inform you that the following statement has been made to my colleagues and me by the unfortunate victim whose unfortunate paralysis meant that it ‘ad to be wrote down by us exactly as spoke by ‘er:

    “My father and I was proceeding in a south-easterly direction on Castle Street, having entered the city centre via the A36 in my father’s automotive conveyance, and having enjoyed a delicious repas in the Zizzis Italian Cafeteria establishment, whereupon, feeling a trifle wobbly, we decides to take a seat in the Park. Woof! Strike a laht!

    Next thing I knows, I finds myself waking up some weeks later in an ‘ospital bed surrounded by various medical paraphernalia , and some very kind gentlemen in trilby ‘ats wot told me I ‘ad been poisoned.

    Well blow me dahn.

    I proceded to remember after some ‘elpful discussion with said trilby ‘atted gents, that we ‘ad come to grief due to the deposit of some sticky material on the doorknob of fathers abode.

    This was clearly the dastardly work of Putin’s goons, no doubt abaht it.

    And, that in a nutshell is wot occasioned the incommodious eventualties wot befell my male parent and my good self.

    Yulia Skripal

    These is my very own words – honest gov”

    • Ophelia Ball

      All together now! – “One’s aged Pater is. a Local Authority Waste Disposal Operative / He wears the uniform millinery associated with that vocation / His trousers have on occasion been known to evoke expletives from bystanders / and he lives in single-storey accomodation provided at a subsidised rental by his employer”

    • Herbie

      Plod are the weak link in the state apparatus.

      Has always been difficult to get anything below Commander level to fully sign up to the “progressive” agenda.

      And the Tories seem to have this fight with Policing. And Policing with them.

      I mean, you won’t need so many police as we’re increasingly remotely monitored.

      You barely see them these days, on the beat. They’re a bit above that now we’ve got plastics.

      Same thing happened with nurses as they became more and more professionalised.

      Wouldn’t attend to basic patient needs.

      • Nomatestype

        Ignorant reproduction of ignorant myths propagated primarily by Quentin Letts and Rod Liddle.

        Where nursing care has changed it is through huge cuts and the overwhelming takeover of NHS management by corrupt ideologues.

  • Pyotr Grozny

    My question is how did she get her cousin’s phone number? I do remember my wife’s mobile number, all 11 digits, but nobody else’s. Was she close to her cousin? There is no indication of this. It is in my experience unusual to be so close to a cousin that one who know their mobile phone number through repeated use, indeed most young people who are competent with mobile phones would gave the number entered in their phone and not need to use it all the time. I only remember my wife’s number because I am a fairly incompetent mobile phone user.

    • Jiusito

      I wondered that. But how about Viktoria had kept ringing the hospital, and in the end some kind nurse took the risk of lending Yulia her phone and getting her the number?

      • Herbie

        I think the idea is that this is a strained conversation, a supervised conversation.

        Not sure how that works with her accessing a phone thru helpful staff and speaking freely.

    • Ophelia Ball

      “I say! I say! I say! – My cat’s got no water? No water? – How does he smell? Well, after 4 weeks couped up in a 3 bed semi with only a coupke of guinea pigs and a litter tray laced with nerve agent, pretty rank, actually, so we cremated him

      Oh, how we laughed!

  • Alex

    Um. Hello?

    “Until that time, I want to stress that no one speaks for me, or for my father, but ourselves ”

    Extracted from “a statement issued on behalf of Yulia Skripal” released by the Metropolitan Police.

    Wait… What?

    • fred

      The Viktotia who recorded a private phone call and released it to the press without permission you mean?

      • bj

        … and put the spotlight on the British authorities –and their lackeys– with their perverse theatrics by doing so. Yes that one.

  • Squeeth

    Obviously, all “she” did was reiterate the govt line, she could have done that at a press conference; what have they got on her dad?

    • N_

      She even mentioned “nerve agent”, hearsay evidence which in court would be worthless. Not that we are in court.

      The Brits could kill her dad at any time. She is probably doing quite well given the circumstances.

  • quasi_verbatim

    I fear Yulia is under a misapprehension regarding the “nerve agent used against us”. NHS Salisbury has stated that NO-ONE in Salisbury is suffering from nerve agent poisoning.

    Where is the writ of habeas corpus? Are there no lawyers? Are there no civil liberties organisations?

  • Chain Break

    This guy was a traitor. If he were British half the country would want him hanged.
    Never forget that.

  • Petya

    As a Russian I can confirm no Russian would ever write such a statement. We don’t construct sentences this way and never put so much BS (like missing the staff (who cares?). Russians are usually very straightforward. Usually the statement would be short and straight to the point. So this is obviously not a translation from Russian. Even more obvious she could not write this in English herself.

    “I find myself in a totally different life than the ordinary one” WOT?!
    obviously this and the whole statement was written by the same person who wrote the speech for the discharged poilce man.

    “with obvious clinical expertise ” haha, this is super funny. These imbeciles at major NHS hospitals can’t do simple procedures which their Russian counterparts from every Russian village are trained for and do every day. I have never yet met a Russian living in the UK who was not shocked by utter sheer all-embracing incompetence of British doctors, both GPs and at hospitals. Why? Because they know better and compare them to Russian doctors especially those from Moscow. I can imagine what a shock it was for a tourist. “with obvious clinical expertise” Russian would write “Thank god they didn’t kill me”. No kidding.

    • N_

      Yes, “obvious clinical expertise” is amusing. It’s as if the statement says “Hail the police, hail the medics, and God save the queen”. British medics, even junior ones and GPs, are far more stuck up and full of absolute shit than most Russian medics. Mostly they have total contempt for most of their patients, whom they view as boneheaded knuckledragging “members of the public” not in any way deserving of being engaged with in real adult-to-adult conversation. For most people in Britain, a medic is likely to be the richest person they ever have a one-to-one conversation with for more than a few minutes. In Russia as you know many medics basically do a working class job and don’t have such attitudes.

      • N_

        There is a lot in the use of the word “doctor” in English. It’s different in meaning from врач. Medics are not really doctors, but it’s customary to give them this title that in fact they never qualified for. They get away with it because it’s not legally protected. Whereas not everyone can call themselves an obstetrician, anyone can call themselves a “doctor”. The position of formal deference in Britain is similar to if people called a medic “a sir”. There’s also a lot of ignorance. Few are aware at the sheer amount of incompetence, lying, and forked-tongue talking that goes on, and how a medic will sign any old shit if he’s paid enough.

        Those interested in learning more should look up “Woolworths test” or “Primark test” as I’m told it has become.

    • John Monro

      I can’t accept this characterisation of the UK medical workforce, if you wish to be taken seriously, don’t slander a whole profession. Good and bad. Yes. But if Yulia and her father really were poisoned with some sort of nerve agent, then the skill of those working at Salisbury Hospital to save them was exemplary. (Recall, Yulia was in extremis at the time of her rescue, frothing at the mouth, in a coma and fitting). She was lucky to survive, yes, but she only survived because the complicated and needed resuscitative treatment was provided. Your Russian village doctor would be totally out of his or her depth. Without wishing to seem derogatory, I’ve been told by medical colleagues that some of the the most demanding and difficult to please patients are Russian, seems this characterisation holds true for Petya at least.

  • bj

    @Craig Murray, @Mod

    Dear Mr. Murray,

    One thing that I keep wondering about. When these government types, like May, Johnson et al., meet one another more or less casually at some dinner table, or at a reception; when talking among themselves, do they actually at anytime in their use of words and language and attitude, express a true belief in that which they say to the public at large?
    I mean, is there a language and attitude of true indignation, among themselves at such ‘informal’ occasions?
    Or are they giddy slapping each other on the back over a con job well done?
    Maybe they carefully evade the subject?

    If you, with your background, could enlighten me somewhat, I would be most grateful.

    Yours sincerely,
    bj (nickname on this blog forum)

    • Herbie

      For those who don’t know, this is a border area between NI and the RoI, between Lifford and Strabane, which is unbordered in familial terms.

      You walk over a small bridge and you’re in the other territory.

      The Guards can’t get you in the other territory, the PSNI can’t get you in the other territory.

      You do something in one and jump to the other.

      It’s old panhandle stuff.

      And borders stuff of history.

      But, looks like the Guards and PSNI are working together.


  • Jon

    That is not the kind of English non native speakers write, nor even most native speakers!

  • james

    i am surprised the uk haven’t figured out a way to do the same with julian assange…

  • Andrew H

    Honestly, I’m surprised people are questioning the veracity of Yulia’s statement and the suggestion that she is under duress is utter nonsense. Having being in a coma for weeks she probably feels like s***t. (I don’t know, and i guess that’s one of the questions we want answered – what’s it feel like when you first wake up?). There are those that will never believe she was in a coma, but these are the same people who believed two days ago that she would just disappear without trace. Will you change your minds again when she talks? Common sense says that Salisbury hospital is not in league with anyone. You have to take their statement that she was in critical condition and probably not going to make it at face value. [this recovery is not scientifically impossible – it seems that if the hospital can keep you alive for long enough then the chemicals are eventually replaced – but not everyone recovers from a coma (example: Schumacher), so this was by no means a predictable outcome – not even by those that supposedly ‘staged’ this entire incident]

    Although, undoubtedly Yulia has been helped writing this statement, that doesn’t mean anything other than she was helped. Parts of her statement ring true – like nobody speaks for me. (implying that the British authorities don’t speak for her either). I am not sure what Craig means by duress, but its sounds unpleasant so given that she will eventually speak freely it is probably not happening – I can’t think of too many forced imprisonments where the captive spoke kindly of their abductors after being released, so my guess is they are treating her well – or is treating someone well a form of reverse psychological duress?

    We also don’t know how close Yulia is to her cousin, so again the fact that she apparently doesn’t want to see her right now, probably means exactly that. Most of the time, visiting relatives can be a real pain, you love them but you also hate them especially when they are being gossipy, nosy and interfering.

    • Jiusito

      Andrew, read Petya’s comments above. If she was feeling like shit, why would she read such a long and verbose statement? Why send such a public message to her cousin? Why say “nobody speaks for me” when the statement was clearly written by an official?

      • Andrew H

        Jiuisto, I’m married to a non native speaker (although after 20 years she’s pretty ok), but when it comes to writing letters she still doesn’t feel comfortable doing it, so on the odd occasion when she has needed to send an official letter to the bureaucrats to complain about a mistake, I write about 95% of the letter, I then read it to her and she tells me to cross out all my attempts at sarcasm and humour and then she adds her signature and it goes in the mail. I’m not saying Julia wrote this letter – they probably came to her and said it would be good if you could put out a statement because there are these cranks that think you are going vanish, what do you want to say: she possibly replied “nobody speaks for me” (whatever that is in Russian). Q. What about your cousin? A. “oh god, not just yet”. etc. Q. Russian embassy is also pestering. A. “tell them to wait a week”. etc etc.

    • kbbucks

      You said it yourself: “Having being in a coma for weeks…..” – does the absurdity of this not strike you??:

      1] In a coma for weeks – given 1% chance of survival
      2] Comes out of the coma soon after this prognosis
      3] Discharged from hospital not more than a week later

      “The Deadliest Nerve Agent known to Mankind” or not I don’t think you’re going to be released from hospital that soon after coming out of an “on death’s door” coma.

      One other thing to pick up on: “Parts of her statement ring true – like nobody speaks for me.” – an obvious contradiction when the Metropolitan police released the statement and not Yulia herself.
      Why doesn’t she do a quick TV interview to quieten speculation?, why aren’t the usual media suspects all over her looking for an interview? – it’s all about ratings for them is it not & this would be a huge scoop given the context.

  • Pascale

    I wouldn’t mind some numbers that could give me some hope that the world is not rushing head down to global conflict.
    And the numbers we all need are how many people follow the MSM narrative and how many don’t.
    I know, it’s an impossible ask, but if Craig Murray could give us a general idea of how many people read his blog – are the numbers going up? – it would be an indication of how much resistance there is to the governments’ propaganda.

    And I am not a native speaker of English either, and after 28 years in this country I still couldn’t express myself in this kind of official jargon. It’s very specific administration speak. Even the average autochthon wouldn’t manage it!

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