Cui Bono? David Leask, Ben Nimmo and the Attack on Ordinary Scottish Nationalists 1068


We know for certain that the Integrity Initiative targets Scottish Nationalists, because two of its luminaries, otherwise unconnected to each other, David Leask and Ben Nimmo, collaborated on a massive attack piece in the Herald identifying individual SNP supporters as “Russian Bots”.

Ben Nimmo works for the Atlantic Council, funded inter alia by NATO. He is also on a retainer of £2,500 per month from the Integrity Initiative, in addition to payments for individual pieces of work. For his attack on Scottish Nationalists Nimmo was therefore paid by the Atlantic Council (your taxes through NATO), by the Integrity Initiative (your taxes) and by the Herald (thankfully shortly going bankrupt). Leask claims to have received nothing but a cheese sandwich from the Integrity Initiative, but has briefed them in detail on Scottish nationalism, attended their seminars, and they have included Leask’s output in their “outcomes” reports to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (on which more in a few days’ time).

I took apart Leask and Nimmo’s horrendous attack at the time, revealing among other things that one of Nimmo’s criteria for spotting a Russian bot or troll was use of the phrase cui bono.

Nimmo’s role as witchfinder-general for Russian Bots appears very remunerative. His August 2016 invoice to The Institute for Statecraft, apparently the 71st invoice he had issued to various neo-con bodies that year, was for £5,000.

It is interesting that rather than sort code and account number, his invoice gives IBAN and BIC, used for payments coming from abroad.

There is a very important aspect of the detailed minute of David Leask’s briefing for the Integrity Initiative, which CommonSpace cut out of the extracts which they published. Leask says that the Integrity Initiative are “pushing at an open door” with the SNP leadership and the editors of The National, who he characterises as reliably anti-Russian and pro-NATO:

YATA – there would probably be a lot of studenty anti-NATO responses. But that might be more of a reason to do it. But SNP reversed NATO policy when it realised what Russia was up to (under influence of Nordic/Baltic allies)
 Mainstream politicians don‟t want to challenge the fringe normally but they’re starting to. Stewart McDonald (defence spokesman) pitching NATO – “friends in Norway, Balts etc are in it”. SNP foreign policy chiefs have very anti-Kremlin, anti-RT, pro-Ukraine rhetoric.
 Immigration not an issue in Scotland.
 Pushing at open door – allies in Scotland about disinformation. Putin may want to sow discord among Scottish nationalists. Pro-independence sister paper had headline complaining Russian trolls attacking Sturgeon. http://www.heraldscotland.com/news/16094929.SNP_top_brass_warn__Sturgeon_is_being_targeted_by_Kremlin_trolls/
Yes campaign had attacks on servers and cyberactivity, thought it was the Brits but then concluded it was probably Russians. http://www.heraldscotland.com/politics/referendumnews/15771388.Yes_leaders__Don_t_be__naive__about_Russian_online_meddling_in_independence/
 SNP going to Ukraine – to reassure allies they are not pro-Russian.

I am afraid Leask is not wrong. The continual willingness of the SNP leadership to endorse Britnat anti-Russian rhetoric without question is a nagging worry for many nationalists. Precisely the same department of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office which funds the Integrity Initiative, funds the Westminster Foundation for Democracy which paid for this joint Britnat/SNP leadership group event at the last SNP Conference, featuring a Ukrainian politician also used by the Integrity Initiative.

Read that carefully, and note that it is not just a discussion on the Ukraine – no harm in that – but one which is openly anti-Russian. The very title, on countering Russian disinformation, is literally straight out of the Integrity Initative’s handbook. Two SNP MP’s took part, including the foreign policy spokesman.

Remember that meeting was on the conference fringe at which I was not permitted to hold a meeting on preparing for Indyref II. An awful lot of Nicola loyalists tell me that, in appearing at present to be much more interested in keeping the entire UK in the EU, rather than striking for Scottish Independence, the leadership are playing a brilliant tactical game.

Other explanations are available.

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1,068 thoughts on “Cui Bono? David Leask, Ben Nimmo and the Attack on Ordinary Scottish Nationalists

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  • Trowbridge H. Ford

    Can you believe the general assumption that getting rid of someone bad is always better, like replacing General James ‘Mad Dog’ Mattiis with Patrick Shanahan, the space weapons expert who has run Boeing’s program for a generation,and is now able to use them under unstable Trump.

    • SA

      Trow
      It struck me that we are all contributing to the war effort through our air-miles. Craig wrote about cheap flights a few weeks ago and their contribution to global warming but of course Boeing sells these aircraft and also makes lot of lethal weapons and is part of the MIC.

      • Trowbridge H. Ford

        Right, SA but that is just the tip of it, as we constantly get asked to give to wounded veterans, the homeless humans and animal, disabled children, foreign countries being taken back to the stone age, immigrants, etc., ad nauseam – all things that the government should be doing adequately.

        And keep your eyes focused on Indonesia..

      • Captain Bluntschli

        SA, good point, yet false economy (pun intended) to boycott Boeing and say, stick with Airbus. Perhaps better to use some of the saving of fare in choosing a cheap airline and send it to an ecology or other social/environmental causes, including the Donkey Sanctuary, in order to up the game.

        Anybody recommend any reliable ecology/wildlife charities?…..

        • Captain Bluntschli

          Which leads one to give a kick up the arse of the much beloved Russia, the vodka-driven nation. As Craig brought to our notice, the whole Russian economy is smaller than Spain. They punch above their weight solely due to historical reasons. What is it that Russia, this country that first put man in space, makes that you want, here? I have a dear friend in Russia and she says that day-to-day life is akin to the state being run by the mafia. I have no sympathy for that dastardly state machine. Just see how China has transformed and is transforming. I’m all for the UK treating Putin & Co. dictators/state terro actors with disdain.

          The Guns vs Butter economic model–all the resources into guns and people here grandstand and applaud Putin–they should be ashamed. (KISS–Keep it Simple, but not too Simple>)

          • Ian

            God knows what you are rambling on about, non-sequiturs, random nonsense and weird assertions. Why do you keep changing your name? What is the point?

  • Tony_0pmoc

    I have seen Gilad Atzmon several times. The same people who gave Craig Murray a very hard time last year, have done the same thing, using the same techniques on Gilad Atzmon, but even more intensively, and since almost completely financially destroying him, have still not stopped their attempts to completely silence him.

    He’s only telling the truth.

    “Gilad Atzmon’s Christmas Message (2018)”

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WwTWlKmQX2I&

    Tony

    • Captain Bluntschli

      God went to the Arabs and said, ‘I have Commandments for you that will make your lives better.’ The Arabs asked, ‘What are Commandments?’ And the Lord said, ‘They are rules for living.’ ‘Can you give us an example?’ ‘Thou shalt not kill.’ ‘Not kill? We’re not interested..’ Then He went to the Mexicans and said, ‘I have Commandments.’ The Mexicans also wanted an example, and the Lord said ‘Thou shalt not steal.’ ‘Not steal? We’re not interested.’ Then He went to the French and said, ‘I have Commandments.’ The French too wanted an example and the Lord said, ‘Thou shalt not commit adultery.’ ‘Sacre bleu!!! Not commit adultery? We’re not interested.’ Finally, He went to the Jews and said, ‘I have Commandments..’ ‘Commandments?’ They said, ‘How much are they?’ ‘They’re free.’ ‘We’ll take 10.’

      • flatulence'

        Captain Bluntschli, I hope your comment isn’t moderated, because what you peddle is quite purposeful, and this speaks volumes about you and your agenda. Whoops.

        • Captain Bluntschli

          Take a running jump helped by your flatulence–i would consider a man with that choice of name to be utterly and totally devoid of any sense of grace or aesthetics, poor chap.

          • flatulence'

            keep it up sweetheart. You’ll know more than most that flatulence produces little thrust, but shitting yourself produces slightly more. Is it bad that I take everything you’ve just said as a compliment? I honestly don’t care. I’m old school male. Unfashionable maybe. I’m big, fit, hairy and handy. And while I’m normally considered a friendly giant once you get to know me, I’d relish you to ‘consider’ me in person. People like you just wither. I am reasonably sexist though, so if you are a woman, my better half would gladly kick your teeth in.

        • Sharp Ears

          flatulence. Appreciate your responses to the Hasbara merchant but best not to feed the troll.

    • Dungroanin

      Goodluck – i’ve hardly scratched the surface of wikileaks – that takes TIME.

      A precis of the actual content of the dump would be a good reminder – ‘duh it’s not about the hack, stupid, it’s the content!’ (Not meant at you)

      Also the Dumb Aussie dickheads can’t spell English??

      I hope they burn in hell for such an enormity in the misrepresentation of their native tongue!

      Oh wait …never mind waiting for hell.
      http://www.bom.gov.au/australia/heatwave/

    • Nick

      There’s little doubt of this, nor the collusion of intelligence agencies with the media (or even control by)

      It’s from a left-wing perspective – partly anti-war and anti-imperialism.

      So, genuinely interested: Trump – pulling out of Syria to his almost universal excoriation by media/establishment in the UK and the US from Left and Right – thoughts?

      • zoot

        there are no leftwing voices on us corporate media. blumenthal and norton’s ‘moderate rebels’, abby martin’s ‘media roots’, and sputnik’s ‘loud and clear’ podcasts are the only places to hear the truth about us empire.

        • Nick

          Zoot, there are plenty of left-wing voices in the corporate media. They are fake admittedly. Finally, my point is how do react to the US dialling back its empire? You need to go beyond mantra.

          • zoot

            what mantra might that be?
            this is long overdue imo. the us is occupying syria in blatant contravention of intl law; and has yet to find any afghan involvement in 9/11 despite almost two decades occupying that country.
            dc and euro elites and their media are always going to use bogus humanitarian justifications for sustaining the occupations a few years more. if it happens trump will have finally got something right, whatever his motives are (most likely private profit.)

          • letthatslip

            Craig solved 9/11 in one of his previous posts; according to him it was just some Saudis who pulled it all off. Applying a smattering of reasonable logic, I find it hard to buy that story somehow, as 9/11 was, on paper, a bit of a kick in the nuts for the US, and taken at face value I find it very difficult to believe that they would work so closely with the Saudis for the past 15 years plus, knowing it was them that kicked them all along (if Craig knows it wass the Saudis, the US government sure do). This is simply not elievable or credible in any way, shape or form. 9/11 was just too big for the US to sweep it aside and continue to work with the perpetrators (they have done everything they can to avoid any enquiries, just like HMG on 7/7). Craig knowingly peddles this misinformation, and one has to ask why? I do not trust him at all

          • Rowan Berkeley

            @letthatslip: “one has to ask why?”
            So it may be, but one will not receive an answer,.

          • letthatslip

            It could be someone trying to make dab – that is a home-made form of cannabis oil which is produced using lots of butane gas. In their infinite wisdom, our anti-human, genocidal, whores of the Antichrist politicians recently decided that in the face of all the evidence that cannabis is essentially harmless, with all the medicinal (including MASSIVE potential for cancer cures), cultural, industrial, sociological and spiritual benefits this truly amazing plant could bring to this wretched shithole corpse that is “Not So Great Shitain” (I spent some time in London recently – what a fucking dump – you couldn’t pay me to live there – big price crash/reality check in the post), we will not be making any progress anytime soon. The last thing they want is loads of people blazing up a spliff and going, “oh wow, they really are fucking our God-given lives up. Fuck them.” So they will never legalise it because they are too evil and too intent on making us spiritual zombies, something they are massively succedding at in England, no doubt about it.
            Oh and our bodies are choc full of “cannabinoid receptors”; these are receptors which are designed to be stimulated by cannabis and cannabis only – we are custom built to take this herb, it’s part of our amazing design. They (the scum that ru(i)n England) have also criminalised magic mushrooms to class A, they grow in the ground here ffs. If you choose to consume these amazing little beauties, users can “experience and communicate with God” and have pretty much the ultimate in spiritual and otherworldly experiences. SUch a shame that folk here are too brainwashed to understand what is going on, the establishment have all but wiped out the spirit of this country and turned many people into stupid consumerist morons. We’re all guilty of it to one extent or another, it’s just some simply don’t or are afraid to even seek out the truth, such is the level of fear programming that folk have been subjected to.

          • Deb O'Nair

            “with all the medicinal (including MASSIVE potential for cancer cures), cultural, industrial, sociological and spiritual benefits this truly amazing plant could bring”

            Those things you cite are fine, and mostly true, but what about the uneducated ‘yoof’ who just use it to zone out to repetitive machine made music or worse, like finding watching Gogglebox interesting. Many young people that regularly use can not hold a coherent conversation and seem to possess a rather delusional self-image. And you’re forgetting that it’s a gateway drug, a gateway to the refrigerator.

            I’m in favour of legalising it because it would take dope off the streets and allow young minds to develop in the way nature intended, maybe then there would be less retards hanging around council estates, getting up to mischief, spreading VD and getting pregnant because they haven’t got a clue what to do with themselves.

          • letthatslip

            The phrase “reptitive machine made music” is bourne out of nothng but ignorance, like the rest of your comment. Bigoted in the extreme

          • letthatslip

            It’s people like you who keep the whole rotten system afloat, where everyone just looks for reason to not do things because of prejudices which have been put there by your divide and conquer masters. The best thing this country EVER produced was the rave scene, which relied heavily on repetetive macine made music. If you didn’t experience those parties in the fields under the moonlight, you missed out big time

          • Deb O'Nair

            You’re on the wrong blog. It’s funny how those that profess that drugs make you a better person are the first to fly off the handle and hurl insult about when there’s a difference of opinion.

          • Deb O'Nair

            ‘The phrase “reptitive machine made music” is bourne out of nothng but ignorance,’

            Guess they didn’t have spell checkers back in the 90s.

          • Deb O'Nair

            reptitive is spelt repetitive
            bourne is a character from a film franchise starring Matt Damon, the word you were looking for is borne.
            nothng is spelt nothing.

            Nothing but ignorance indeed.

      • J

        It remains to be seen whether there is a pull out, how it is achieved etc. We’ll see. The ‘resistance’ anguish is too precious to behold.

      • Sharp Ears

        If US troops are moved out of Syria, Iraq is their next destination.

        https://sputniknews.com/analysis/201812261070998585-usa-iraq-withdrawal-troops/?
        ‘Iraqi political analyst and strategic expert Ahmed al-Sharifi told Sputnik that the withdrawal of American troops from Syria is a manoeuvre and at the withdrawal of American troops from Syria is a manoeuvre and that US forces will move to bases in neighbouring Iraq.

        “According to available data, [the] Americans are already expanding their base in Erbil. Part of the troops will be sent to the Ayn al-Asad Airbase, west of Anbar province between Baghdad and the Iraq-Syria border. In that way, the White House will be able to keep abreast of the developments in Syria. The legal rationale for this operation is a cooperation agreement between Baghdad and Washington. Moreover, the USA has a mandate from the UN, which it received [at] the beginning of the operation against the Daesh*”, Ahmed al-Sharifi said.’

        • Nick

          Sharp Ears, appreciate your response. If an iraqi political analyst and strategic expert has this opinion in one news outlet, I’m convinced, It’s not that I disagree, but if you haven’t realised all media outlets are biased – including this one (and my very own humble opinion on it) – then there’s no point in conversing.

          You can’t present spin as proof. And I don’t know what’s happening with the pullout, if it even occurs.

          • JMF

            I think the US have realised their troops in Syria are now sitting ducks. The no fly zone equipment is better than they thought which means they would be unable to support their ground troops from the air in the event of a Syrian army assault. Israel is also stumped and can now only launch attacks from Lebanon’s airspace.

        • laguerre

          Iraq is not a solution for the Americans. There have already been calls for some time from the Iraqi parliament for the withdrawal of Americans from Iraq. US withdrawal from Iraq too is not far away.

          • laguerre

            Michael Norton

            The Yanks won’t last too long in Iraq. Public opinion in Iraq is more or less unanimous against the US. Abd al-Mahdi had to refuse to bow down and visit Trump in the US base (the former British colonial airbase).

            Even the KRG Kurds, I suspect aren’t happy. They’d reached a modus vivendi with Baghdad and Ankara. Now they going to receive the US troops from Syria, who no doubt are going to undermine their arrangement with Baghdad, and push thoughts of independence again.

      • Dungroanin

        Nick – obviously you are not trying to change the subject from the projectile vomit that is II and IoS .. so on the subject of potus declaration of withdrawal (and now after his visit to Iraq and his comments to soldiers there) i find it handy to read what the old dogs of war have to say.
        https://turcopolier.typepad.com/sic_semper_tyrannis/2018/12/unwarranted-hysteria-over-syria-and-afghanistan-by-publius-tacitus.html

        And the colonel is always worth a good war story
        https://turcopolier.typepad.com/sic_semper_tyrannis/

        How long can the msm ignore the II and IoS is the great elephant in our midst.

        • Dungroanin

          Ps – under NO circumstance except an INVASION of Israel by Iran, will the public in the UK support an attack on Iran.

          Not even a false flag sacrificial invasion by US forces in Iraq.
          Under a contrived Nato ‘one for all’ bs.

          It will not happen without full cross party majority support. There is zero chance without the Neolibconartiste Blairites in control and ready to blindly march us in under another of their daily lies.

          Not again. Not in our name. Never.

          Regardless of whatever the SCL/CA/IoS/II mobsters and their media hags try to make us believe yet another of their lies.

      • Wikikettle

        Hardly. Syria is devastated. It suits US and Israel to have continual chaos. The US uses Israel to test out Russian air defence radars and missiles, which both Syria and Russia cant afford. Turkey will use the Kurds as an excuse to land/oil grab after US leaves. Israel can fly over Lebanese air space and use civilian aircraft as cover. ‘Might is Right’ is fine in the short, medium, and even long term. However one day the US will ditch Israel and there will be a terrible backlash within US against the Israel lobby. One only has to listening to ex Generals. ex CIA folk like Ray McGovern and Michael Scheuer, Republicans Ron and Rand Paul, that the mood among the American population is changing about the wars and Israel. Even within Israel there are voices that warn of a terrible future. The so called civilised western democracies forgot Palestine and its people, were blind, deaf and dumb to their suffering. But as in all things – things change. And then its to late to ring or wash your blood soaked hands.

        • Wikikettle

          The people no longer believe the bought main stream media or the bought so called Labour MP;s. The government can spend a fortune on propaganda to no avail, eg Trump victory and Brexit. Its the BBC that has lost…..

        • laguerre

          American policy is failing in Syria, because of course it could never work, as they just imitated a failed French colonial policy from the 1920s. In the sense that Syria gets its country back, that’s winning.

  • michael norton

    I guess this is a warning statement from Russia to Israel
    This is your last warning, stop your attacks or else.

    ‘Launched from Lebanon’

    The foreign ministry of Russia, a key Syrian ally, said it was “VERY CONCERNED” by the Israeli air strikes.

    “The provocative actions of the Israeli air force… directly threatened two airliners,” it said.

    The statement said the unidentified airliners “not from Russia, were preparing to land at the airports of Beirut and Damascus”.

    The Syrian military said the attacks were carried out from within Lebanese air space.
    BBC

    • laguerre

      Russia doesn’t want open war with Israel. It’s not a question of a deal with Netanyahu, rather that open war would draw in the US, which could lead to a lot of difficulties. Better to shoot down the Israeli missiles, and say nothing.

      • SA

        But the only language that Net will understand is the downing of one or several of his precious invincible aircraft. He is hiding behind Russian and civilian air traffic now to achieve his aims.

    • Wikikettle

      I have a feeling that the Russian Air Force, which lost the crews of their AWACS plane, will be waiting to
      get revenge. Israel was warned after the event, but again to no avail as yesterdays attack shows.

      • Dungroanin

        The discipline of the Russian forces and generals in not reacting in the face of murderous provocation is a sight to behold. One can understand how their unmatched sacrifice and victory in WW2 came about and saved the world from the hagemons who were planning to rule the world a hundred tyears ago – as they still dream of doing today. Yet again it seems it is left to the Russians to save Europe from its own ancient psychopathic plutocrats. Revenge will be as cold as General Winter.

        • J Galt

          The “unmatched sacrifice” in WW2 was helped along by machine gun wielding “blocking detachments”, and as for 1914 I think you’ll find Russia was the aggressor, not your “hagemons”.

          • J Galt

            In 1914 the Russians mobilised secretly and then openly, first. In 1914 mobilisation meant war. The Germans held off until basically the General Staff were screaming at the Kaiser. Soon after the Russian 1st and 2nd armies invaded East Prussia. The Russian generals Rennenkampf and Samsonov were incompetent and their logistics were poorly organised – to cut a long story short the outnumbered Germans after initial setbacks and under new command, routed them in an heroic struggle called the Battle of Tannenberg.

            Even historians sympathetic to the Soviets acknowledge the existence of “blocking detachments” or “barrier troops”. They were formed as early as 1918 in the civil war. Few fought willingly for their Bolshevik masters.

            As for links do your own research.

          • Dungroanin

            I do my own research while you play the IoS/II card – Russia!

            ‘Control of the economy. Control of populations. Control of territory. Control of information. World War One was a boon for all of those who wanted to consolidate control of the many in the hands of the few. This was the vision that united all those participants in the conspiracies that led to the war itself. Beyond Cecil Rhodes and his secret society, there was a broader vision of global control for the would-be rulers of society who were seeking what tyrants had lusted after since the dawn of civilization: control of the world.

            World War One was merely the first salvo in this clique’s attempt to create not a reordering of this society or that economy, but a New World Order.’
            https://www.corbettreport.com/wwi/

  • michael norton

    Under the influence and protection of America
    https://sputniknews.com/middleeast/201812261071017183-israel-attack-damascus/
    Six jets of the Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) opened fire on targets in Syria on Tuesday night; most missiles were reportedly intercepted by Syrian air defence forces. Both Damascus and Moscow have condemned the attack, which Washington said was aimed at Hezbollah’s targets.

    Syria’s Foreign Ministry said in a letter to the United Nations on Wednesday that Israel’s missile attack on Damascus and its suburbs is an evidence of unlimited support that Washington gives to Tel Aviv.

    “Syria underlines that Israel’s continuous aggressive policy is possible due to the unlimited and consistent support of the American administration,” reads the statement.

    The ministry added that Israeli attacks seek to drag out the Syrian conflict and boost the morale of terrorist groups

    • michael norton

      Well, it could be considered two-faced for America to claim to be pulling out of Syria whilst helping Israel to keep attacking Syria.

      Hardly joined up policy?

    • Captain Bluntschli

      Ahhhh, finally The Breaking News Channel appears, a good couple of hours behind CNN. Is he meeting the Iraqi PM–lading question. Some people I know eat ‘news’, for brekka, lunch and even Boxing Day dinner.

      Do you have a video clip of his speech there? Or a transcript? Please pin it up after your research.

      Folks, please note my point made above earlier–the Americans know how to walk and chew gum at the same time.

      I hope Brexit happens soon and this country gets a kick up it’s backside to know what it means to work hard, work smart and put in the hours

      Btw, where is Mayhem?

      • giyane

        No news on r4. Breakfast consumed in silence. one blunch short of a sandwich.
        astonishing cynicism from mayhem that the troops will be more compliant after being fed. She voted for Xmas and has now been devoured hot with sprouts and cold on toast. Why bring up the subject at all in the season of goodwill you cantankerous blimp from the British raj?

        • michael norton

          Israeli PM and acting defense chief Benjamin Netanyahu has praised the capabilities of his air force a day after IDF jets endangered two civilian flights while carrying out Christmas Day strikes against ‘Iranian targets’ in Syria.

          “We are standing steadfast on our red lines in Syria and everywhere else,” Netanyahu told cadets at a graduation ceremony at Hatzerim Air Force Base, noting that the air force’s unmatched potential allows them to reach areas “near and far, very far.”

          While singing the praises to the “special capabilities” of his country’s airborne forces and arsenals that can destroy any target, Netanyahu did not directly comment on the latest strikes in Syria. He also failed to respond to the criticism of the Russian military which earlier had accused the Israeli air force of directly endangering two civilian flights over Damascus and the Lebanese capital Beirut during Tuesday night’s raid. On the evening of Christmas Day, six Israeli F-16 fighter jets used two civilian flights as cover to strike a logistics compound on the outskirts of Damascus from Lebanese airspace, the Russian Defense Ministry said Wednesday. Thus, during the assault, the Syrian military was forced to restrict the use of air defense systems and radio jamming capabilities to avert a possible tragedy. Despite that advantage, only two of the sixteen Israeli-launched laser-guided bombs reached their targets, wounding three people, while the rest were intercepted.
          While a potential tragedy involving civilian jets was averted on Tuesday, similar decoy tactics by Israel already led to horrific consequences back in September, when Syrian air defense units struck a Russian Il-20 plane, killing all 15 crew on board. At the time of the disaster, Israel’s F-16s were using the surveillance plane as cover during their raid against alleged ‘Iranian targets’ in Syria.
          https://www.rt.com/news/447481-netanyahu-air-force-syria-iran/

          I am sure it must but ilegal for Israel to hide behind commercial airflights over Lebanon, to fire missiles over Lebanon airspace into Syria?

          • laguerre

            “Israeli PM and acting defense chief Benjamin Netanyahu has praised the capabilities of his air force a day after IDF jets endangered two civilian flights while carrying out Christmas Day strikes against ‘Iranian targets’ in Syria.”

            That’s because Israeli policy is failing, much like the US policy. Yet another raid on Damascus just shows that the previous ones failed to achieve their aims.

    • Blunderbuss

      I have heard a rumour that the troops withdrawn from Syria will be redeployed to Iraq. Does this foreshadow another Iraq war or, perhaps, an attack on Iran?

      • JohninMK

        Pulling them back to Iraq makes sense as it is safe and relatively easy to get them there quickly. They can then plan a proper logistic route for removal back to the US (maybe). They have a lot of equipment that they took in over the years that now needs to come out.

      • laguerre

        “Does this foreshadow another Iraq war or, perhaps, an attack on Iran?”

        It foreshadows another withdrawal, as JohninMK says. The Iraqis all hate the Americans, after what happened.

      • michael norton

        Late on 25 December, Israel launched an attack from or across Lebanese air space, “in response to an anti-aircraft missile launched from Syria” according to the IDF; Russia condemned the strikes as provocative and said that they “directly threatened two airliners”. Reports from Syria said an arms depot in Qatifah, about 40km north-east of Damascus, was hit, injuring three soldiers.
        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Syrian_Civil_War

        This reads, as if, Israel only attacked Syria via Lebanon
        because Syria was already attacking Israel.

        Is it possible that there is a grain of truth, here.
        Was Syria already attacking Israeli infrastructure in
        The Stolen Golan, ready for re- taking Golan?

        It is the Syrians stated aim, after all.

        • laguerre

          Wrong. Asad has not attacked Israel – he’s accused of being hand in glove with Israel by bloggers, because he doesn’t attack them. All wiki articles about anything slightly related to Israel are written by Israel.

      • Jo

        I think so that they can still do strike and run things learning from Israel within Syria…..and drop off or rescue more isis by helicopter….support black ops etc etc…

  • N_

    Currently (watch this space) the allowed major angles on the Gatwick drones story are 1) “Did the Sussex police act wrongly in respect of the couple they arrested?” and 2) “Those non-London cops, eh, not knowing whether there were drones or not?” Both of these angles insult the Sussex police at the airport. London-centrism rears its ugly head because the media and the government PR boys and girls who are giving the media their instructions have little else to fall back on. Minor allowed angles include “If you get a drone for Christmas, mind where you fly it”.

    This is somewhat taking the piss.

    This kind of disruption to such an important airport is not a joke. It is an event that costs tens of millions of pounds I should have thought; it has a lot of public relations significance in the area of how incompetent the authorities look in security matters; and unless it was all made up and the story was always kept under tight control – which does not seem to be the case – it has military significance too. Next time there could be drones carrying bombs or the plague virus.

    Here are the important questions. Were there any drones at all? If so, why isn’t there better public evidence? If not, why did the authorities say they were? were there any flying objects at all? and if so what were they?

    Were there really 200 sightings and 67 statements taken by the police from witnesses who say they saw drones? Because if so, and given there is only very tenuous public evidence for drones, that makes this a UFO story, whether anybody likes it or not.

    • Blunderbuss

      It’s just another hoax like the Skripal poisoning. I’m trying to guess what the next one will be.

      • Dave

        Start from did any pilots see the drones and who ordered the shutdown and were the local police kept out of the loop, hence skunking it with “there may not have been any drones”, which sounds the truth, otherwise they wouldn’t have said it, requiring the government to tell them there was, on unrevealed evidence.

        • JohninMK

          In common with some other similar ‘scary’ events there are no photos and few if any of the statement makers are in the papers. Including, as you say, from the aircrews that were actually out on the aprons who were in the observing front row.

          Has it all been swept under the Official Secrets Act and if so why?

          It is difficult not to smell a rat.

    • Blunderbuss

      @N_

      “Were there really 200 sightings and 67 statements taken by the police from witnesses who say they saw drones?”

      Here are some of them:

      https://news.sussex.police.uk/news/50000-pounds-reward-for-information-on-drone-sightings-343218

      I think this incident might be related to the sale of Gatwick Airport:

      https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-46691846

      The drone scare could have influenced the share price and enabled somebody to make a lot of money.

      Watch out for bankers with drones.

  • Mistress Pliddy

    I suspect they are
    — either trying to entice something they know, or think they know, or think, is under preparation. In that case, they exactly want to put it about that they a bunch of incompetents and that security there is a laugh, with the purpose of another “look how good we are at foiling terrorist plans” and now may we have a bigger budget and some more surveillance” operation
    — or they are setting us up for rather a nasty false flag there or at another airport, with similar purposes plus the excuse to invade xyz (current enemy country).
    (These two options are not mutually exclusive.)

    A very convenient distraction for the May and her faltering government and the Brexit brigade.
    “Let us set aside these petty squabbles and all pull together.”

    • Dungroanin

      A coup is the only thing the state would be practising – rapid movement of troops and or mass expulsions to Oz! Curfews and shoot to kill deployments. For civil order of course…
      Anything? Anything at all? On the II/IoS, CA/SCL mobsters? Anything on Leave.EU and Dominic Cummings? Or is it the usual crap that it’s ALL Putin?

      The independents should be holding the mainstreams feet to the coals! Every day.
      As we point and laugh at their ludicrous ‘three bags fulling’ – the outing of Cadswalladr as a DS stooge has been a great xmas present. The toy bot Hardings cold vomit xmas offering is abysmally inapt – we really need to get the independent press regulators set up asap – after yet another egregious episode over tge Gatwick couple. Bring on the election.

    • michael norton

      All these “Iranian” persons, rubber boating from France into England, of late, I wonder if the smugglers are using drones, to spie their way in? If you ban drones or bring in a military system for downing them, this could be what’s Crawley /Sussex/Surrey/airport is about
      but Theresa upset a few with her go home buses.
      Military drones could be used to spot the “Iranians” as they leave the French shore, then Theresa could ring up Emmanuel and say ” I say old boy, can you pick up/off those Iranians leaving Dover”
      HMG

      • Dungroanin

        Just to make it clear – the majority of the recent arrivals are Iraqi/Afghani and other – just a minority are Iranian.
        The media reports it as opposite.

      • Radar O’Reilly

        I wrote several (public) papers a few years ago on ELINT tracking of snake-heads and their paying customers/‘refugees’, simply by tracking their cellular emissions way out at sea. Surely the signals regiment squaddies previously at LGW can pop over to Kent and scan for RF packets of unknown origin? Or maybe redeploy the secret UK drones from Norn’Irn and record the whole channel.

        Probably it’s actually not necessary as didn’t one rubber boat that got through, ‘simply’ find an open Police Station and claim asylum, £££ for all on-board!

        Surely T.May can simply continue her policy to close all Police Stations, hence no more ‘refugees’ , no more asylum.

    • nevermind

      Not bad ms pliddy.

      How does one pursuade someonereluctant to sell an airport? One disrupts them on the busiest time a year, with a top action they have problems to trace….

  • Tarquin

    Twas Christmas eve and The Government, via the good ol radio, announced every UK airport was to be getting “Drone Dome”, i heard it with my own ears! But alas so far the internet has no record of this.

      • Mochyn69

        Well said, Dungroanin.

        My old fb account is as dead as a door-nail.

        Mind! I don’t mean to say that I know, of my own knowledge, what there is particularly dead about a door-nail.

        ..

  • Sharp Ears

    Like much of the UK’s infrastructure, Gatwick Airport goes under control of a French company. Vinci now have a majority shareholding.

    A majority stake in Gatwick Airport is to be sold to French operator Vinci Airports for £2.9bn.
    Vinci Airports, part of infrastructure group Vinci, will buy 50.01% of the UK’s second-busiest airport.
    The other 49.99% will be managed by current owners Global Infrastructure Partners (GIP)’
    ‘https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-46691846

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

    Veni, Vidi, Vi(n)ci and all that.

    • Blunderbuss

      Ah! Is the drone hoax an attempt to reduce the stock market value of Gatwick Airport so that it can be bought more cheaply?

      • michael norton

        By stuff, I mean our infrastructure.
        They seem to own our Nuclear power stations, some of our electricity providers, some of our water companys, some of our ports, some of our airports, some of our car plants, some of our wind farms, some of our solar farms, what next, our police forces and prisons?

  • michael norton

    If Donald Trump aims to take out Iran in 2019 ( the two missile strikes to Syria were an example to both Iran and Korea) he might be evacuating his troops from Syria into next door Iraq, which is of course, next door to Iran.

    One of the themes of the war on Syria, was to stop an arc of influence, spreading from the Persian Gulf, through Iraq, through Syria/Lebanon to the Eastern Mediterranean.
    It was also to stop Methane pipelines from the Persian Gulf to Cyprus.
    Cyprus is the be the Eastern Mediterranean hub for Methane.

    Recently it was said that America was to start building a base in Cyprus.
    Actually it could be claimed that this whole thing was kick-started by Mrs.Clinton.

    • michael norton

      Cyprus: Zygi naval base munitions blast kills 12
      11 July 2011
      https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-14102253
      A massive blast at a munitions dump in southern Cyprus has killed 12 people, including the commander of the country’s navy, officials say.

      A fire reportedly ignited about 100 containers holding confiscated Iranian explosives at the naval base at Zygi.

      The fire spread to the island’s largest power station. It has been knocked out, resulting in widespread power cuts.

      Defence Minister Costas Papacostas and National Guard Chief Petros Tsalikides resigned over the accident.

      President Dimitris Christopfias, who went to the area, described the explosion as “a catastrophe of biblical proportions”.

      He added: “We were devastated by this event, not so much by the material damage, but by the loss of human lives and the injury of many of our compatriots.”

      The dead also include the commander of the Evangelos Florakis naval base, police said. About 60 people were wounded in the blast.
      https://www.armscontrolwonk.com/archive/204248/saga-of-the-monchegorsk/

      All started by Mrs.Clinton.

    • laguerre

      The US position with regard to Iran is weaker than what it used to be. Finally making an attack, under Netanyahu’s pushing, and on his behalf, is not a very bright idea. If the idea for an attack didn’t look feasible in 2012, it’s not going to look better now.

    • Wikikettle

      If Russia defended Syria,. It will defend Iran. This time however China will lend it’s enormous economic support which Russia needs. The war mongers forget that there is a new alliance now. They always pick on the weak. It’s easy to use F16’s to pummel Gaza. But China and Russia in Iran …..I don’t think so.

  • michael norton

    Massive eXplosion at King Arthur’s Way, Andover, not twelve miles from Charlie Rowley’s flat near Boscom Down.

  • N_

    A majority stake in Gatwick airport has today been sold by its US-registered Nigerian-chaired owner to the French-registered company Vinci.

    Vinci is the world’s largest construction company and is majority owned by … goodness knows who. Construction is traditionally completely mobbed-up and large-scale civil engineering contracts are traditionally used for large-scale money laundering.

    The use of I__aeli “Drone Dome” technology is interesting. “Britain” (the Ministry of Defence?) bought this technology from the Z__nazis in August 2018. According to Forbes, “it is not clear why it took so long for the U.K. Government to sanction the use of the equipment and end the criminal behavior. It is not yet known who was operating the drones.

    Could…unexpectedly revised deals have had anything to do with the delay? D’you think?

    What is clear is that the pre-Christmas story about drones, unsupported by much publicly available evidence, was extremely good for the supplier.

    One question is whether I__aeli support is needed in certain circumstances for the Britain to use this technology. In other words, do the Z__nazis control the security at Gatwick insofar as they can shut the airport whenever they want?

    Basically the British government

    * doesn’t own Britain’s main airports
    * has to pay lots of money to a Nazi foreign power to protect those airports and keep them operational

    It’s like we’re talking about a small shop that houses a gambling machine.

    • N_

      Vinci also manage hospital car parks, where they try to impose £100 “fines” on patients whose appointments overrun. Actually private companies have no right to impose fines, so they will call them something else, but the bastards are still extorting money out of hospital patients and their visitors using threats.

      And now these mafia scum own Gatwick Airport.

    • Blunderbuss

      Well, Margaret Thatcher was credited with turning Britain into a “well-armed boutique”.

  • Sharp Ears

    The scandal of rising car parking charges at NHS hospitals is covered in many of today’s newspapers. Some hospitals have even increased their charges this year. £226m is the total return. There is little or no transparency on the financial transactions between the car parking operators and the hospital trusts who actually own the land. Labour have promised to end this scandal

    More than four in 10 hospitals hike parking charges
    27 December 2018
    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/wires/pa/article-6531449/More-four-10-hospitals-hike-parking-charges.html.

    Also in the Mail today is a long spread by Samantha Cameron (described as a fashion designer LOL) detailing her huge debt to the NHS, namely Great Ormond Street Hospital, for their wonderful treatment of her first child, Ivan. Volunteers are also thanked.

    ‘We lost Ivan nearly ten years ago and we miss him dreadfully every day’: SAMANTHA CAMERON opens her heart about the death of her son as she praises volunteers who supported her emotional and exhausted family and backs Mail’s NHS campaign
    26 December 2018
    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6531223/SAMANTHA-CAMERON-searingly-personal-statement-backing-Mails-campaign.html

    It is gross hypocrisy. What a pity her husband enabled the passing of Lansley’s Health and Social Act in 2012 which allowed for further privatisation of the NHS and its ultimate destruction as a free to all service at the point of need as envisioned by the post war Labour government.

    There is a push by May’s government for volunteers to come forward. to fill the gaps left by the shortage of nurses presumably. Such a shame she cancelled nursing bursaries. Brexit will also limit the supply of trained nurses coming from abroad.

  • Trowbridge H. Ford

    Can you believe that Ray McGovern, Craig’s buddy, has now written on Consortium News unreserved support for Trump sacking Mattis for Shanahan!

    One just doesn’t know who to support in this chaotic, covert world.

    • Nick

      Possibly Trump wants to leave anyway and this is all optics?

      If he leaves Syria voluntarily and gets a load of flak, because if the “gift” to ISIS and Putin, it might be better to get “thrown” out of Iraq because, at the article implies, ISIS is a threat locals can manage on their own.

      I am speculating. I find the MSM logic hard to reconcile at times.

  • Dave

    Yes previously an Israeli plane fired on Syria in the shadow of a Russian surveillance aircraft. The Syrians fired at the Israeli plane and destroyed the Russian aircraft. This time an Israeli plane fired on Syria in the shadow of a passenger airliner, but fortunately this time the Syrian’s only fired at the missiles!

    • Blunderbuss

      What a cosy scene in his kitchen and he’s reading The Guardian on his laptop. However, the message is clear. To paraphrase: “Democratically-elected governments are not up to the job so the IfS is going run the world for them. It’s even going to run the NHS”.

  • BrianFujisan

    I think most of us At Craig’s Blog..Know that Good will is Short lived.. False, Even Re Western Deep State..

    It’s Very Hateful

    With Evil Impunity

    Risk Civilian Planes

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