Skripals – The Mystery Deepens 3063


The time that “Boshirov and Petrov” were allegedly in Salisbury carrying out the attack is all entirely within the period the Skripals were universally reported to have left their home with their mobile phones switched off.

A key hole in the British government’s account of the Salisbury poisonings has been plugged – the lack of any actual suspects. And it has been plugged in a way that appears broadly convincing – these two men do appear to have traveled to Salisbury at the right time to have been involved.

But what has not been established is the men’s identity and that they are agents of the Russian state, or just what they did in Salisbury. If they are Russian agents, they are remarkably amateur assassins. Meanwhile the new evidence throws the previously reported timelines into confusion – and demolishes the theories put out by “experts” as to why the Novichok dose was not fatal.

This BBC report gives a very useful timeline summary of events.

At 09.15 on Sunday 4 March the Skripals’ car was seen on CCTV driving through three different locations in Salisbury. Both Skripals had switched off their mobile phones and they remained off for over four hours, which has baffled geo-location.

There is no CCTV footage that indicates the Skripals returning to their home. It has therefore always been assumed that they last touched the door handle around 9am.

But the Metropolitan Police state that Boshirov and Petrov did not arrive in Salisbury until 11.48 on the day of the poisoning. That means that they could not have applied a nerve agent to the Skripals’ doorknob before noon at the earliest. But there has never been any indication that the Skripals returned to their home after noon on Sunday 4 March. If they did so, they and/or their car somehow avoided all CCTV cameras. Remember they were caught by three CCTV cameras on leaving, and Borishov and Petrov were caught frequently on CCTV on arriving.

The Skripals were next seen on CCTV at 13.30, driving down Devizes road. After that their movements were clearly witnessed or recorded until their admission to hospital.

So even if the Skripals made an “invisible” trip home before being seen on Devizes Road, that means the very latest they could have touched the doorknob is 13.15. The longest possible gap between the novichok being placed on the doorknob and the Skripals touching it would have been one hour and 15 minutes. Do you recall all those “experts” leaping in to tell us that the “ten times deadlier than VX” nerve agent was not fatal because it had degraded overnight on the doorknob? Well that cannot be true. The time between application and contact was between a minute and (at most) just over an hour on this new timeline.

In general it is worth observing that the Skripals, and poor Dawn Sturgess and Charlie Rowley, all managed to achieve almost complete CCTV invisibility in their widespread movements around Salisbury at the key times, while in contrast “Petrov and Boshirov” managed to be frequently caught in high quality all the time during their brief visit.

This is especially remarkable in the case of the Skripals’ location around noon on 4 March. The government can only maintain that they returned home at this time, as they insist they got the nerve agent from the doorknob. But why was their car so frequently caught on CCTV leaving, but not at all returning? It appears very much more probable that they came into contact with the nerve agent somewhere else, while they were out.

“Boshirov and Petrov” plainly are of interest in this case. But only Theresa May stated they were Russian agents: the police did not, and stated that they expected those were not their real identities. We do not know who Boshirov and Petrov were. It appears very likely their appearance was to do with the Skripals on that day. But they may have been meeting them, outside the home. The evidence points to that, rather than doorknobs. Such a meeting might explain why the Skripals had turned off their mobile phones to attempt to avoid surveillance.

It is also telling the police have pressed no charges against them in the case of Dawn Sturgess, which would be manslaughter at least if the government version is true.

If “Boshirov and Petrov” are secret agents, their incompetence is astounding. They used public transport rather than a vehicle and left the clearest possible CCTV footprint. They failed in their assassination attempt. They left traces of novichok everywhere and could well have poisoned themselves, and left the “murder weapon” lying around to be found. Their timings in Salisbury were extremely tight – and British Sunday rail service dependent.

There are other possibilities of who “Boshirov and Petrov” really are, of which Ukrainian is the obvious one. One thing I discovered when British Ambassador to Uzbekistan was that there had been a large Ukrainian ethnic group of scientists working at the Soviet chemical weapon testing facility there at Nukus. There are many other possibilities.

Yesterday’s revelations certainly add to the amount we know about the Skripal event. But they raise as many new questions as they give answers.


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3,063 thoughts on “Skripals – The Mystery Deepens

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    • John2o2o

      Not sure what this comment is a reference to, but it does presuppose that Jo Public actually knows what VX is (she doesn’t) and how toxic it is.

  • Adrian

    There is a “security’ firm called Visao used by the American-turned-British tax-evading con-man Bill Browder. It bridges the world of white collar operators and the street/underworld of criminality. This would seem a prime instance to employ such an outfit.

    • Volga volga

      Why would the Russian government let yulia travel on the third knowing the asassins had travelled on the second. She woud only get on the way.

  • LondonBob

    John Helmer has very good contacts in Russia so his article is either a hint at the truth or some well planted disinformation.

    http://johnhelmer.net/the-new-allegations-in-the-skripal-case-and-the-standard-of-proof/#more-19679

    It has been speculated that Skripal was involved in the Trump dossier, given his close relation to Steele and his handler now subject to a D notice it is highly likely. It is thus possible that the GRU might have had a new interest in him. Like Berezovsky and his oddly timed suicide they wouldn’t have wanted him to go back to Russia and tell all.

    A high profile way of attempting to kill him though, still suggests a false flag motivation.

    • Agent Green

      If they’d wanted to kill him they would have done the job properly. Why would you send two bungling oafs, with Russian passports travelling from Russia to do the job?

      • LondonBob

        You misread what I said, MI6 would have the motive to stop him going back. I wonder if tgese guys were couriers bringing documents and mony for them to escape. Explains why Julia and her father have vanished.

        • johnf

          If the UK “establishment” through Orbis had connived in the framing of Trump with Russiagate (and Skripal had been a primary source for Steele’s extremely dodgy dossier) – which would explain the “early” retirement of the young, fit, and healthy head of GCHQ and May’s panicked trip to Washington to meet the newly elected President – then the arrival of these two “Russians” with documents and money to finance Skripal’s re-defection to Russia to spill the beans on Russia-gate -could certainly have precipitated the British security services into a hasty and ill thought-out false flag Novichok poisoning.

          Such an action has the added bonus that its creation of a worldwide wall of horror at the evilitude of Putin would have put a definite spanner in the works of Trump trying to reach an understanding with Putin.

  • James2

    Craig a question

    When did they travel to Amesbury with the perfume box?

    Surely these guys would be captured on cctv going there and putting the box in the location that Charlie said he found it?

    That side trip is not covered in the timeline from the BBC maybe that’s why they are not being charged with manslaughter ?

  • Ruth

    Just spoken to Aeroflot. There were no direct flights from Moscow to Gatwick on 2 March. There was a flight from St Petersburg, SU6619, which landed at Gatwick at 2.45pm. The Met said the inward flight was SU2588 from Moscow to Gatwick and outward flight SU2585 to Moscow

        • Tom Welsh

          You really want to bet?

          As this is an obvious provocation, which could only hope to succeed with the whole-hearted and comprehensive support of the mass media, small details like that simply don’t matter.

          Unless they are reported, and given due prominence, by the BBC, The Times and The Guardian.

          Which of course they won’t. I just read The Times’ coverage and leader today, and it was a sickening and disheartening experience. The UK no longer has any reliable mass media, and we have thus arrived at Jefferson’s nightmare.

          “…were it left to me to decide whether we should have a government without newspapers or newspapers without a government, I should not hesitate a moment to prefer the latter”.

          – Thomas Jefferson (in a letter to Colonel Edward Carrington, 16 January 1787)

      • Paul Barbara

        As I suspected, Aeroflot stopped flying to/from Ukraine some time back:
        ‘Aeroflot halts ticket sales for Ukraine flights beginning October 25 (2015), offers full refund for tickets already purchased’:
        https://www.aeroflot.ru/gb-en/news/54357
        The two countries are practically at war; would you want to fly an Aeroflot plane to Kiev? Remember MH 17?

      • Yannick

        The only problem I can see with this is the MET say they landed at 15:00 but this states the plane landed at just before 16:00. I’m also confused, and maybe someone can help me out, but why no flights listed after the end of March?

      • Paul Barbara

        @ Tracy Jenkinson September 6, 2018 at 11:44
        But Aeroflot told Ruth the flight didn’t fly that day.
        And according to the site you link to, it states SU 2588 landed at 15:58; yet the pics show them both cleared through immigration/customs at 16:22:43 – an incredibly fast processing! And for ‘Russians’!
        Less than 25 minutes from landing to getting through customs and immigration? That must be some kind of record – perhaps MI5 were expecting them?

    • isa

      They did have a daily service to Gatwick (in their Winter timetable which is valid up to the 26th March) it could be a codeshare with another airline but they did have a service. However, the 2nd March was the day of storm Emma. 38 flights were cancelled in Gatwick but I cannot find any reference to a Moscow flight being cancelled. I understand that this Gatwick service is discontinued and flights are or will be moved to LHR .

    • Paul Barbara

      @ Ruth September 6, 2018 at 10:34
      I also emailed Aeroflot, but haven’t had a reply yet. The last Aeroflot flight SU 2588 was on 24th March:
      https://uk.flightaware.com/live/flight/AFL2588
      Aeroflot 2588
      AFL2588 / SU2588
      Upgrade account to see tail number
      ARRIVED OVER 5 MONTHS AGO
      Terminal N
      So that service is extremely rare.
      SVO
      MOSCOW, RUSSIAN FEDERATION
      LGW
      LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM
      left GATE 27
      Sheremetyevo Int’l – SVO
      arrived at TERMINAL N
      London Gatwick – LGW
      SATURDAY 24-MAR-2018
      13:38 MSK
      (7 minutes early)
      SATURDAY 24-MAR-2018
      14:37 GMT

      I couldn’t look further back, without a subscription (though you do get a 7-day free period).

      Definitely something fishy going on, from the UK end.

  • Rhys Jaggar

    As I said yesterday: a trial raising all this incredible discrepancy of ‘evidence’ would be a glorious comedic interlude, showing the world what a bunch of arrogant, ignorant, incompetent, puerile, callous, indifferent bunch of idiots the UK Establishment is populated with.

    • John Smith

      I doubt they’ll ever be a trial because IMHO the supposed official suspects probably don’t even really exist – thus making it impossible for the Russian government to hand them over even if they wished to.

    • uncle tungsten

      Absolutely Rhys, and I would be interested of there could be a civil action by damaged parties in the village who have suffered loss, inconvenience or some such, A proceeding under administrative law or a class action related to security. I am not aware of the UK jurisdiction and administrative law but I assume it has at least a pale version of remedies available. Especially so as the UK remains part of the EU for now.

  • Vivian O'Blivion

    Craig.
    I believe your latest post is back on the genuine trail that will lead to the entity behind the whole sordid mess. Like “Lee Harvey Oswald” being photographed and recorded in Mexico City, “Petrov” and “Boshirov” are there to be seen.
    The misdirection is all too obvious. The “Russian” nerve agent. The “Russian” target. The “Russian” assassins (conveniently travelling on Russian passports and making every effort to have their presence detected and recorded). The Aeroflot flights. The direct flights to and from Moscow.
    “Petrov” and “Boshirov” are a sub-operation in a grander scheme, they are actors from central casting. My guess is they are back in Ukrain or Is***l maintaining a low profile with altered appearances.

  • Jack

    Where does the face photos come from?

    The men wearing many type of clothes just to be there for 2 days.
    Different jackets, pants, shoes, hats.
    I dont doubt they are involved, especially since they havent come forward denying the accusations. What has not been clarified is they are related to Russia/Russian state.

    Besides really amateur work here,

    * Botched assassination attempt
    * Folly of trashing the perfume bottle properly
    * Folly of finding poison in the floor at the Hotel
    * Folly of friggin travelling to Russia aftewards

    Did they find these guys on the streets?
    I dont know if this speaks against this being a work of Russia or not, is this the type of clumsy level Russia acts? Then I guess we really have nothing to fear.

    • Michael McNulty

      And on his site Moon of Alabama shows two photos of the men taken at Gatwick Airport dated 2nd March 2018, but with both time-stamped at 16:22:43. Like a bad fit-up.

  • Paul Greenwood

    I suspect Skripal had “business” with organised crime. If Yulia’s phone was “bugged” as the Propaganda Ministry states then it would track even when the phone is supposedly “switched off” unless they remove battery and put it in a Faraday Cage.

    We never hear how Skripal made enough money for his son to own a £400,000 house unmortgaged. Pablo Miller netted him because he had tastes he could not afford on a GRU salary……why he should be content to live like a GRU Colonel in UK eludes me…….he had a money tree

      • LondonBob

        Not sure about that. Although according to Seymour Hersh he was providing information on organised crime in Russia. That said not sure what information he would have as he left Russia a long time ago and is GRU rather than FSB. Then again the thing that the Steele affair has shown is just how clueless our intelligence services are. As Litvinenko said, they believe anything we tell them.

  • James Mills

    Which is more incompetent – the supposed assassins from the GRU or the spooks who provided this ‘evidence ‘ for TM to mislead the public ( again ) ?
    Why have the British media not picked holes in this ‘evidence’ ? – rhetorical question !

  • Dave Lawton

    Here is a part of a quote from the British State. “At the same time, the attempted assassinations of Sergei and Yulia Skripal, “with the first use of a nerve agent in Europe for the first time since the Second World War”,

    This is a Lie a big Lie.The State used Sarin B nerve agent on hundreds of British servicemen who unwittingly volunteered to be human ‘guinea pigs’ for a series of experiments at Porton Down.They were told that that it was research into the Common cold.
    So if they lied about the first time in Europe for the use of nerve agent it therefore blows their argument that the Russians did it.Verdict the government lies.

  • Ry

    Craig,

    There of course exists the possibility that the door-handle narrative fits the timeline *if* it was applied during the so-called Reconnaisance Visit. However, the key will be the timings of the two men arriving and leaving Salisbury.

    If they arrived during daytime hours, applied it and left during daytime hours a few things: 1. they could have been seen doing it. 2. The Skripals might have been home at the time and could have seen then men approach their door. 3. The Skripals could have been out, and would have returned to it on their door meaning they’d have been poisoned on the 3rd, not the 4th. It seems to me that unless it was applied to the door handle late at night on the 3rd, when the Skripals were already home and didn’t go outside until the following morning (when they next touched their door handle), that it had to have been applied on the 4th – in which case the timeline doesn’t fit (as you say). So they key to ruling out (or not) the 3rd being the when the poison was applied would be the timings of the men’s movements on that day. Do we know when they left Salisbury on the 3rd to return to their hotel?

    • Ry

      Craig,

      Some other questions whilst I’m here that would be good to know/investigate…

      What were the movements of the Skripals on the 3rd? For the door handle theory to hold true, it would have had to have been done on the 3rd of March (most likely late in the evening, for many reasons, but also just to make sure you don’t accidentally poison a neighbour or delivery person as post, packages etc can be delivered then, and the Skripals could have ordered delivery food on a Saturday night for example. Surely trained assassins would consider this), and the Skripals would had to have been home when it happened.

      What were Petrov and Borishov’s movements in Salisbury on the 3rd? Did they meet anyone? Did they bring novichok into the country, or was it given to them when they got here?

      When were their flights booked, and was it a return booking? If it wasn’t attempted murder, but a meeting gone wrong in which P & B fled quickly, they most probably booked a one-way flight back to Russia once they were already in the UK. Did they? Were the timings & dates of their return flight booked in advance? This would tell us something about how long they actually planned to be in the UK.

      If these questions have clear and compelling answers, then it adds weight to the government claims. Without any knowledge of the timings of P & B’s Salisbury visit on the 3rd, it looks like the Skripals were poisoned between 15.35 & 16.15 on the 4th.

      • Ry

        Three in a row…

        Obviously, if the poison were applied during an initial visit on the 3rd by P&B, it rather begs the question; why would they return to the scene of the crime the following day? Surely they’d just leave the country.

  • jamie

    The west is about to lose its head chopping terrorist backed overthrow with Assad and Putin in Syria. The whole mess is likely to be an impending false flag cw attack in syria so we can start the bombing runs with impunity. the public is being conditioned to accept Russian use of CW for this purpose.

    • Michael Droy

      Jamie – interesting point. But does a blatantly pathetic attempt to smear Russia over Skripals actually make later fake CW claims in Syria more or less credible.
      Less i’d suggest.

      • Borncynical

        Michael – unfortunately, in the eyes of the incompetent and immoral UK Government and MSM the answer is ‘more credible’. I was watching the Sky Paper Review last night where of course this story was the No 1 topic. One of the reviewers started off by saying “Well we know that these men are GRU agents…”. I was shouting at the TV (metaphorically, at least) “No we don’t! Look at the evidence. ‘We’ don’t know their real names and they purportedly gave false information on their supposed visa application so how can Theresa May assert that they work for the GRU. She’s making it up. We know nothing about them. Just stop and think about it for thirty seconds!”.

        • Sharp Ears

          That was the strange Harriet Sargeant.
          I began to feel sorry for silly old Kevin Maguire of the Mirror. He is usually on with Andrew Pierce of the Heil. Perhaps Sky have dropped Pierce aka https://twitter.com/toryboypierce

          She is laughingly self described as ‘Research Fellow at the Centre for Policy Studies, an independent think tank.’

          ‘Independent’ my eye.
          ‘It was co-founded by Sir Keith Joseph, Alfred Sherman and Margaret Thatcher in 1974 to challenge the post war consensus of Keynesianism, and to champion economic liberalism in Britain. With this in mind Keith Joseph originally wanted the think tank to study the social market economy, naming it the ‘Ludwig Erhard Foundation’ and ‘Institute for a social market economy’ until it was eventually settled on the benign ‘Centre for Policy Studies’.
          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Centre_for_Policy_Studies

          • Borncynical

            S.E, thanks for this interesting background info. Ah yes, Kevin Maguire or as I like to think of him ‘the one with the demonstrative eyebrows’! I also saw a male reviewer (must have been on the BBC as it wasn’t our Kevin) open his verdict by saying, effectively, that these latest revelations must be a kick in the teeth for all those conspiracy theorists out there. These journalists and pundits truly aren’t in the real world.

    • Tom Welsh

      No matter what excuses they provide, there will be no “bombing runs with impunity”. The aircraft would be shot down, and any aircraft carriers that launched them might be sunk.

      It has been such a long, long time since anyone in the West paid the slightest attention to international law and the rules of war that a few facts have been completely forgotten.

      1, Any nation that launches a military attack on another nation is, de facto, declaring war. (Although the lack of a declaration is another crime). There are only two exceptions: carrying out a specific UN mandate, and self-defence after an act of war.

      2. Neither of those exceptions allows NATO members to attack Syria. Therefore any such attack is a violation of international law, the UN Charter, and the Nuremberg Principles.

      3. When one nation carries out acts of war against another nation, a state of war exists between them. This state of war persists until a peace treaty is concluded. (Incidentally, you’re quite right: that means the USA is currently at war with about half the nations of the world).

      4. In a state of war, either nation – and, morally, especially the nation attacked – is entitled to use any and acts of war against its enemy. That mans that Syria, and its allies, are legally entitled to sink any and all US ships, shoot down any and all US aircraft and missiles, destroy any and all US satellites and spacecraft, and kill any and US military, naval and air force personnel wherever they may be and whether or not they are currently engaged in acts of aggression. When Britain and the USA fire-bombed Dresden, Berlin, Tokyo and other cities – and when the USA used nuclear weapons against Japan – those acts were justified by the state of war that existed. (Even though it was Britain and France that declared war on Germany, not vive versa).

      So no one should be surprised, if the USA and/or other NATO members drop one single bomb on Syria, if all those nations’ military assets in the region are destroyed without warning. Legally, Syria would also be entitled to destroy Washington and New York without warning.

        • jamie

          Hi Tom
          The bottom line is none of these rules apply to the good and the great west in any scenario. The CW claim will be used as justification, trump/may and macron will claim they are on the right side of the moral debate. The west wont bother putting pilots in harms way, they will just launch a salvo of expensive tomahawks.

          There is a real danger that Russian troops will be collateral damage to this crusade and that in turn has very dangerous consequences all the way to ww3. The only inhibitor to a russian response is the nuclear option and hopefully even the people who are making a lot of money from the syrian folly might think twice. But the ball would be in Russias court as it was after the douma false flag attack, and they showed that they were unwilling to escalate.

          The west only has one enemy and that is its own electorate hence the hysterical unsubstantiated guilty verdict that russia uses CW in Salisbury. The public will buy the story (because that is what they are being comprehensively told by the MSM) that russian is behind future use of cw by russia in syria and therefore will not resist the west’s attack.

          For sure its a really dangerous time.

        • lissnup

          The meaning is clear, Tom. This level of clarity is what’s missing from media discourse. I’m going to search for you on Twitter making the same observations, and will post it there myself with a link to your comment if I can’t find your tweets.
          Thinking back, the British public were able to prevent Cameron openly attacking Syria the first time it was proposed, though I believe air and other operations went ahead in secret before the government later used a dubious CW attack as pretext to give it’s “consent” to military involvement. The last publicly acknowledged attack on Syria by the UK as part of a coalition was in April. So the situation you describe has already begun, meaning Syria and it’s allies could legitimately attack UK, US, France (perhaps other countries) and claim defence. Is that correct, or is the R2P an excuse even without a specific UN resolution?

      • Borncynical

        Tom,
        Thank you for your clear and helpful summary. Unfortunately, as you indicate, the US, UK and France seem to think they are a cut above every other country in the world when it comes to any obligation to obey international law. And unfortunately it appears to observers that they get away with their manipulative and bully boy tactics without so much as a slapped wrist from the UN.

    • Dungroanin

      Our mercenaries – UK, US, French, the Libyan mercenaries, the ‘White Helmet’, the CIA/ UK MI masters, never mind the proxy isis army canon fodder are landlocked.

      Whenever the proxy army fails the BANKERS send in their own boots on the ground, using some pretext, false flag or an invitation to attack or invade, to take the spoils.

      History is rinsed and repeated in their never ending quest to be the toppest dogs and most powerful banker. Millions die so what as long as trillions are made.

        • Dungroanin

          It has always been about riches every since Croesus invented money.

          The bankers own countries – they often steal from each other, killing nations in the process. They fund ALL sides and destroy weapons while making making themselves richer.

          By following the money through history, every miltary conflict is easily explained.

          ‘Public’ history is written by the winners and they have almost always been bankers and their henchmen.

  • MightyDrunken

    The actions of the Skripals are a bit odd on the day and the way the police have described the timeline of their movements is too.

    As soon as they arrived at Salisbury they fed some ducks. According to earlier reports they then went to Zizzi’s. Sergei appears agitated and in a hurry. They go to the Mills pub and soon after are found at the bench.
    The police timeline ignores the ducks, implies the pub visit was before the meal but don’t actually say it. (by saying “At some time after this [parking the car], they go to the Bishops Mill Pub in the town centre.”) Then soon after Zizzis they are found ill at the bench.

    Why did the Skripals go and feed the ducks and then appear in a hurry at the restaurant but then go to the pub? One possibility is they were going to meet someone in the park but didn’t show. The grab some lunch and the meeting is then rearranged for the pub. Now they need to get to the pub and Sergei is pissed off. Something happens at or near the pub. The police misdirect the public away from the crime scene for some reason.

    It is possible that these two gentlemen are who the Skripals were wanting to meet. Well that is one theory, I am taking everything with a grain of salt and a pint of beer.

    • Tom Welsh

      “As soon as they arrived at Salisbury they fed some ducks. According to earlier reports they then went to Zizzi’s”.

      Rob Slane presents convincing evidence that they went to Zizzi’s first, then fed the ducks, and went to the pub last of all before being found unconscious. The authorities may have re-ordered those events to deflect attention from the pub, which may well be where whatever skullduggery occurred was carried out.

      Soemone even said that the bread fed to the ducks (and shared with some boys) was from Zizzi’s.

      • MightyDrunken

        From the excellent Rob at Blogmire.
        http://www.theblogmire.com/the-salisbury-poisonings-how-the-ducks-led-down-a-rabbit-trail-then-to-some-potentially-crucial-information/

        “After my piece, I managed to get in contact with Aiden’s mother, Victoria, who has very helpfully answered a few questions I put to her….
        Secondly, she remembers the time of the incident on the CCTV as being 1:15, but her partner believes it was 1:45. If it was 1:15, this would seriously mess up the police timeline, as they have stated that Mr Skripal was driving down Devizes Road towards the City at 1:35. However, if it was 1:45, this would fit well with that timeline, and with their statement that Mr Skripal parked in Sainsbury’s car park at 1:40. At least we can be sure that the duck incident took place pre-Zizzis.”

  • Adrian Kent

    More questions indeed.

    Rob Slane, aka @TheBlogMire, a Salisbury resident has some interesting comments regarding their movements at this time – he thinks the 10 minute – train-to-petrol station walk is unlikely.

    More interestingly perhaps, he notes that the 13:08 picture of the ‘assassins’ shows them at the end of the road that the Skripals would have driven down to get to the Sainsbury’s car park where the Skripal’s car was parked at the time.

    See his comments to his post here:

    http://www.theblogmire.com/open-thread-on-the-new-opcw-report-and-any-other-business/

    Also someone calling themselves @tim foil hat man there asks some interesting questions about the shadows in the pictures of the men walking across the bridge (image CCTV6 I think) – s/he suggests they don’t match the noon(ish) sun position – although it’s hard to tell in the overcast conditions.

  • SA

    The Ukranian connection cannot be dismissed. There are many Ukrainians in Russia, it has been estimated that there are 1.9 million Ukrainians in Russia and about half a million of them refugees after the 2014 coup.They are in many ways very close to Russians and this fluidity means that they can also travel from Ukraine to Russia via many routes. Ukraine, under the current regime is one of the countries that is interested in harming Russia and there have been many instances of this such as the MH17 shooting down and the ‘failed ‘ Babichenko pseudo-assassination, to name a few. As Craig stated, Ukraine had access to a lot of knowledge of both atomic and CW warfare of the old USSR. So is this a sort of blowback?

  • Crispa

    I agree that there are more questions to be answered.
    1. I note that the “Russian pair” arrived on the Friday, a day before Yulia Skripa arrived via Heathrow on Saturday. Did they kn ow that she was coming?
    2. A critical MP might ask how these guys were issued with visas when the government is supposed to be checking rigorously all entrants from Russia – remember that Abramovitch was denied a visa on his Russian passport.
    3.How could they smuggle so easily what must have been a suspicious package? Where were the customs checks?
    4.There was a time-gap before the traces of the deadly nerve agent were allegedly found in the East End hotel but no decontamination measures – note the Salisbury emergency services were reported to have dumped their vehicles in land fill last week – an extreme measure I would say.based on their risk assessment
    5. As a Russian spokesperson reported yesterday GU is military intelligence concerned with matters of defence etc.- we know Sergei was once a member but the nearest work involvement he is reported to have had is in connection with Christopher Steele’s dodgy dossier – a political and not a military matter so the motivation is clearly obscure.
    6. The story including the images that have come to light only after a long period of time and time-scales of the operation that Craig raises seems almost too well constructed to be credible.
    7. The government through Sedwell is taking this proactive aggressive policy of denouncing without full evidence – which again raisesquestions about the validity of the conclusions reached and announced by Theresa May. As also admitted yesterday it is not known if they were GU or not.
    8. Then of course there is the timing of the disclosures to coincide with the concerns about the Russian intentions in idlib..
    I think there is a lot more water go under the bridge.

    • Paul Barbara

      @ Crispa September 6, 2018 at 11:15
      ‘..2. A critical MP might ask how these guys were issued with visas when the government is supposed to be checking rigorously all entrants from Russia – remember that Abramovitch was denied a visa on his Russian passport.
      3.How could they smuggle so easily what must have been a suspicious package? Where were the customs checks?…’
      What checks? Craig was nearer the mark than he realised – indeed, they must both have been ‘faster than Usain Bolt’ – according to when the plane is reported to have landed – 15:58. they got through customs and immigration controls in less than twenty five minutes (16:22:43).
      Oh, those Russians! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kvDMlk3kSYg

  • Peter

    The Russian GRU agents obviously have completely forgotten the manual of trade-craft.

    They travel with a fake Russian Passport from Moskow and back, clearly flaunt their faces in front of every available surveillance camera, leave a trail of their actions a mile wide and dispose of the chemical in a bin at some second hand store?

    Do the UK secret service agencies really want to paint such a picture of utter incompetence of the Russian secret service and do they really think someone doesn’t spot the mile wide holes in this narrative?

  • Vivian O'Blivion

    The volume of traffic on this site has been truly spectacular in the last 24 hours. The regular Hasbara contributors have commented in a mocking tone to the effect that the wheels are coming off our collective conspiracy theories. The wheels are indeed coming off but they are departing the official narrative.
    Check out the front pages of the European press from this morning. A few below the fold mentions of Salisbury in the German papers, but otherwise complete disinterest.
    Weekly review of the press later today on BBC Radio Shortbread. Mr Cosgrove may have some interesting observations.

    • Charles Bostock

      Viv

      “. The regular Hasbara contributors have commented in a mocking tone to the effect that the wheels are coming off our collective conspiracy theories.”

      I think that’s a reference to a comment of mine on the previous thread. Your comment is quite revealing, isn’t it? Firstly, you use the word “hasbara”, which might indicate that you see an Israeli connection. Have I misread something? Secondly you correctly use the the plural plus the word “collective”, which indicates that there are several conspiracy theories, held collectively, existing alongside each other. That fact would appear to devalue each individual conspiracy theory because they can’t all be right at the same timne, cam they? Thirdly, I wonder what reasonable explanation can be given for the fact that Craig’s last thread attracted a record number of “comments” within fewer than 24 hours other than that the conspiracists are getting worried? And fourthly, one hopes that all those who have advanced theories and pointed to discrepancies etc in the story have been – or will shortly be – in touch with the police and security agencies in order to help them elucidate this affair. To know and not to assist the authorities in their investigation of a crime would be reprehensible.

      • Vivian O'Blivion

        Well spotted. Of course there can only be one legitimate conspiracy theory. As a recently ex-Celtic player stated “a lie has many variations the truth has none”. Most of the conspiracy theories expounded on this site are (IMHO) tin foil hat ramblings but I would rather people questioned the official narrative and formed a silly conspiracy theory than passively accepted the state propaganda.
        Perhaps there has not been an increase in traffic on this site but rather an increase in those outraged enough to post comment rather than passively read.

      • LondonBob

        The Israelis always have been the most active in media manipulation and their hasbara programme the pioneer. The Russian obsession comes across as misdirection to me. You seem unduly upset by the use of hasbara, interesting. Not that I am in any way questioning who you are, the motives behind what you post or its credibility.

    • Charles Bostock

      And don’t forget that there’s a commenter on here who also appeared in the US version of House of Cards! I refer to “Agent Green” of course.

  • Charles Bostock

    “Yesterday’s revelations certainly add to the amount we know about the Skripal event. But they raise as many new questions as they give answers.”

    The first sentence presumably uttered through grinded teeth, and of course to those that are convinced this is all a dastardly false flag operation, whatever evidence comes out and may come out in future is likely to be met with the retort that “this raises new questions”.

    One observes the same sort of wilful refusal to believe that anyone other than the Brits or the Americans (and of course the Israelis) can ever be responsible for any evil act. The Rohingya are persecuted in Burma? Why, it’s the fault of the Brits for having “imported” them over 100 years ago! Dictator General Galtieri invaded the Falklands? Why, it’s because the UK led him to believe that it wouldn’t mind! The examples are legion, I’m afraid to say.

    • Igor M.

      Yes, and full biometrics (iris and finger prints) together with six (or eight, I can’t remember) pages of rather detailed and intrusive questions.

  • mdroy

    I can’t see a single new piece of info that would not have been available by May at the latest.
    Why wasn’t this presented back then – we know that the Germans claimed that they had seen no additional evidence.

    Plus why would anyone open the bottle in a seedy London hotel? (shades of Litvinenko there).
    And is it possible that these guys were simply there to monitor what Yulia/father were up to and who they were meeting? Like the policeman they too might have visited the house and been contaminated by Novichok – is it stated whether they returned to the seedy hotel?
    As ordinary “watchers” that would explain how they exited so secretly despite arriving so visibly.

  • adams

    Quote fro a letter in the Independent.Today Thursday 6

    RuthEH
    51 minutes ago
    Just spoken to Aeroflot. There were no direct flights from Moscow to Gatwick on 2 March. There was a flight from St Petersburg, SU6619, which landed at Gatwick at 2.45pm. The Met said the inward flight was SU2588 from Moscow to Gatwick and outward flight SU2585 to Moscow

  • Goose

    The Russians had been sniffing around Sergei for awhile, it’s reported. Maybe not giving him a new identity and living in a house under his real name was to bait the Russians in.

    What if someone saw an opportunity in this fact?

    Many still find it hard to believe the Skripals were exposed to a deadly nerve agent. Given Yulia’s phone call and the way ‘updates’ went from critically ill to “everyone’s health is normal and there are no irreversible things”.

    • Igor M.

      WHY on earth would they be sniffing around him, he’s been rinsed clean of intelligence before he was handed over by the Russians to the Brits and then rinsed clean of intelligence by the Brits once the Brits got their hands on him. Who, in their right mind would think that someone who was exchanged in a spy swap would hold any intelligence value?! C’mon!

      • Goose

        The BBC’s Mark Urban stated he was told by “intelligence sources” the Russians were still interested in him. Probably because he was offering his knowledge/expertise still? Urban said he had interviewed him last year remember for a book he was writing.

        • Sharp Ears

          Wondered when his name would crop up! Corera was all over it last night on the BBC channels. There was even a shot of him with that hideous** green and white building where MI6 live in the background. Have you ever walked along the pavement in front of it? I have. You have a very creepy feeling as you know you are being watched.

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SIS_Building

          ** “Ceaușescu Towers! Part of Thatcher’s legacy.

          ‘On 1 June 2007 the building and its curtilage were designated as a protected site for the purposes of Section 128 of the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act 2005. The effect of the act was to make it a specific criminal offence for a person to trespass onto the site.’

          A rumour that there is a tunnel to it from Whitehall.

          What evil.

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