Jonathan Sacoolas Is Not, and Has Never Been, a Diplomat 432

UPDATE: Since I published this article the mainstream media, including at least Sky News and the Guardian, have started to report that Sacoolas does not have diplomatic immunity. This is a massive reversal in the MSM line, though to date none have published that he works for NSA or explained the NSA/GCHQ relationship. The MSM are all quoting the lawyer Mark Stephens, rather than this blog, as the source of the information. I would gently note that I can so far find no evidence of Stephens pointing out Sacoolas is not on the Diplomatic List until some hours after I broke the story, and that when he gave radio interviews yesterday Stephens was unaware of the fact.

Ultimately however it does not matter that I am not credited; what matters is my lead has in practice been followed and there is now a much stronger point of pressure available to get justice for Harry Dunn.

There is no Jonathan Sacoolas on the official Diplomatic list. Neither Sacoolas nor his wife has any right to claim diplomatic immunity under the Vienna Convention.

Article 31 of the Vienna Convention states that:

A diplomatic agent shall enjoy immunity from the criminal jurisdiction of the receiving state

Article 37 extends this privilege to family members living in his household. A “diplomatic agent” is defined in article 2(d).

The “members of the diplomatic staff” are the members of the staff of the mission having diplomatic rank;

Jonathan Sacoolas does not hold, and has never held, a diplomatic rank. He has never been a member of staff of a diplomatic mission. (All those with diplomatic rank appear in the diplomatic list, see above link. That list also includes some attaches who do not have diplomatic rank (depending on the type of attache), but there is nobody with diplomatic rank not in the list).

Jonathan Sacoolas does not have, and has never had, any entitlement to diplomatic immunity in international law. Sacoolas works as an NSA technical officer at the communications interceptions post at “RAF Croughton”. His role is support to the interception of communications from British citizens. As I explained in Murder in Samarkand, the NSA and GCHQ share all intelligence reports, but each faces legal constraints on mass spying on its own citizens. So the NSA has staff here fronting the spying on British citizens, while GCHQ has staff in the US fronting the spying on US citizens, and the polite fiction is that the results are transmitted back over the Atlantic to the US or UK respectively, before being “shared” with the partner intelligence agency.

None of which has anything to do with diplomacy, and Sacoolas must be the subject of a DSMA notice given that all mainstream media are referring to him constantly as a “diplomat”, when they all know that is not true. The irony is of course that if Sacoolas actually was a real diplomat, the US would very probably have waived the diplomatic immunity of his wife, as the issues around his presence and function would be much less sensitive.

The UK has no Vienna Convention obligation to acknowledge the “immunity” of Sacoolas’ wife, contrary to all reporting to date. What does apparently exist between the UK and US is a secret, bilateral agreement to treat GCHQ and NSA staff as if they had diplomatic immunity. That is not at all the same thing as Vienna Convention protection under international law. I cannot conceive the grief of Harry Dunn’s parents, but I do hope that they are not deceived by the pretence at intervention in this case by Johnson and Raab.

I am not at all convinced, as a matter of law, that the government has the power to grant, by bilateral treaty or otherwise, immunity from criminal prosecution to foreign nationals, plainly outside the provisions of the Vienna Convention. This should be tested by the courts.


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432 thoughts on “Jonathan Sacoolas Is Not, and Has Never Been, a Diplomat

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  • SA

    None of this is surprising, given the closeness between NSA and GCHQ and possibly other spy agencies. Memory is short. The story of Katherine Gun and the leak of how NSA tried to dish out the dirt on UN diplomats from the non-permanent members of the security council is apposite here. It would really not be expected that the British authorities will take this question further.

    The story has now been made into a film. There are still unanswered question as to why the case against Gun was dropped.

  • giyane

    I had a close friend 20 years ago who was driving the company van on a long straight stretch of road to work at 7 a.m. not far from Shrewsbury when a big mercedes car came towards him on his side of the road. He carried on thinking the driver would move over but in the end pointed the van into the hedge and smashed himself up along with the van. In all fairness he was accident prone but this time his legs , his hips etc were all broken.
    The long and the short of it was that the driver of the Merc had apparently just returned from abroad and was apparently being protected by the police in the accident investigation He took it to court and won compensation but nothing happened to the other person. He moved to Lanzarote and I’ve not seen him again.
    Shit does happen.

  • Billy Brexit !

    My view is that Anne Sacoolas was here supporting her husband and family on a long term secondment to the NSA spy base. I do not think she is on the payroll or a spy herself. My understanding is the families live on site in accommodation provided by the USA govt which considering the sensitivity of her husband’s NSA role would make sense from a security view. Looking at google street view it seems they do indeed drive on the left inside the base and are issued with right hand drive cars to use while in the UK. She had only recently moved to the UK and not used to the different system here as many Americans are when then go abroad.

    I think she made a mistake when leaving the base as the road is a country road with little traffic, drove on the wrong side and had a collision with Harry. This was traumatic for both parties but as is usually the case, those on motorbikes come off much worse, in this case fatally.

    I think the US government arranged transport home for the entire family to stop further enquiries into reasons why she and family are in the UK. There could well be a prison sentence on her head depending on the circumstances which would be upsetting to her family and discourage other Americans from accepting similar roles abroad.

    This is evading justice for sure but it may be argued by some that the electronic spying carried out at the NSA base is too important to jepordise because of personnel issues and pesky criminal charges against their employees.

    The bereaved families best course of action could be now through the American court system to seek redress as Anne Sacoolas will never set foot in the UK or EU again fearing arrest on an international warrant if that arrangement continues after the sorry mess of Brexit is concluded.

    • SA

      Your post seems an excuse for not just criminality but for states aiding and abetting such criminality because it is in the national interest. If she had run over someone in the states she would have faced justice for the appropriate misdeed. Now an accident has turned into not just an attempt to escape justice but a state abetting and aiding the perversion of justice.
      It is appalling to think that for whatever reason that justification that anybody is above the law is still considered to be OK.

      • Billy Brexit !

        It’s not an excuse for anything, just my analysis of what went on and the reasons for it.
        It’s not a pretty situation for sure and I don’t think it was the woman’s decision or for that matter Donald Trumps to bring her home. The NSA management wanted to minimise risk and evacuating her out was one way to do it, a bit clumsy for sure.
        No criminal charges against the woman would bring back Harry and I doubt it would make the parents feel any better to be honest.
        Claims through the US court system would seem to be the only viable option for them.

        • SA

          “No criminal charges against the woman would bring back Harry and I doubt it would make the parents feel any better to be honest.”
          Billy. When in a hole stop digging is my advice to you. Of course since no criminal charges against any murderer will bring back the dead, why do we not just scrap murder as a crime?

    • Croughtoner

      The majority of US personnel in Croughton drive LH Drive vehicles which are shipped over from the States when they arrive here.
      The Sacoolas’ did not live on base, they lived in rental housing in a neighbouring village.

  • different frank

    I have had my commenting account in the Independent deleted twice for presenting this evidence.

    • Billy Brexit !

      Dispite the dispite by many who contribute to this blog against the Mail Online, they do, bless them, allow fairly uncensored and often revealing comments by their readers to current news stories. The Guardian, Independent and supposedly other newspapers who aspire to attain the higher moral ground, adopt a people’s republic of communist China approach to freedom of expression. I know which approach I prefer.

  • Vivian O'Blivion

    Superficially, Trump’s “instinct” to “put America first” and withdraw from military engagements abroad is to be welcomed. Never project your prejudices onto the motives of others.
    Trump continues to tour his reheated, German American Bund from the 1940’s. Last night, addressing a crowd of 20,000 in Minneapolis; “We’re bringing the soldiers home. We may need them for something else.”
    Whatever could he be hinting at?

    • Republicofscotland

      Erdogan proudly stating that 109 Kurdish terrorists have been killed so far since Turkey forced its way onto Syrian soil.

      Erdogan has stated that if the West complains about his actions he’ll send the 3.6 million Syrian refugees currently in Turkey to Europe.

      It doesn’t mean a jot to Erdogan that 11,000 Kurdish fighters were killed fighting against IS on behalf of the West. Reports have said that some Kurdish families are fleeing Rojava.

      Erdogan is determined to crush the Kurds and the PPK, lets not forget Westminster has sanctioned the sales of £1.1 billions pounds worth of weapons to Turkey since 2014.

      Trump must impose sanctions on Turkey before Erdogan commits a genocidal act against the Kurds, then again Turkey is still in denial over its genocidal slaughter of the Armenians.

      • MJ

        “Kurdish fighters were killed fighting against IS on behalf of the West”

        Since when was the West opposed to IS?

        • Republicofscotland

          IS to the West is pro-Assad fighters such as Iranian backed or Syrian fighters.

          IS to many is Western backed proxy fighters from across the region including the so called Syrian freedom fighters, who only killed moderately according to UK/US.

          IS are labelled by whoever is defining the enemy at the time.

      • SA

        The same west has hailed Turkey in their supposed action against Islamic terrorists in Syria, whilst in fact it was and still is supporting Islamic terrorists in Syria. Erdogan is just acting with impunity because being a member of NATO, he cannot be attacked by Russia or Syria for that matter without incurring application of clause 5. The only way to control this monster is to expel Turkey from NATO. But that is of course unlikely to happen.

        • giyane.


          How handy for erdogan to have an different ethnic group on his borders to fuel nationalistic rage.
          Not much difference between b rexiteers and Europe. In other words a slogan acting as a smokescreen for criminal activity.
          We hit them . They hit us back.
          It’s getting in the way of the parents’ sex lives. Trumps and Boris that is.

      • Hatuey

        “Westminster has sanctioned the sales of £1.1 billions pounds worth of weapons to Turkey since 2014.”

        They’ll soon be selling them a lot more.

    • Herbie

      ” “We’re bringing the soldiers home. We may need them for something else.”
      Whatever could he be hinting at?”

      Internal dissent, real or contrived. Posse Comitatus, and all that.

      But anyway, we need to see the idea of the US pulling out, as an agreed change in world governance rather than something more morally uplifting.

      Virtue as necessity.

      Tulsi Gabbard, for example, represents this elite position rather well, but so does Trump.

      Hey ho.

      The program is being switched.

      Expect a few glitches whilst normal service is being restored.

      • Vivian O'Blivion

        “… Us pulling out, as an agreed change in world governance … “. You really would look a gift horse in the mouth.
        If Halliburton / KBR resort to scamming domestic infrastructure projects (remember, KBRs roots go back to scamming civil engineering projects in LBJs Texas), while not ideal for American taxpayers, at least Asian and African peasant farmers have fewer multimillion Dollar pieces of ordinance dropped on them out of a clear blue sky.

  • Vivian O'Blivion

    Scotland have a WRU ranking of 9 and would automatically rise to 8 if they beat Japan (an if on many accounts). Scotland’s FIFA ranking is 52 and in freefall. Perhaps fat Ken is accentuating the positive?

  • Hatuey

    I didn’t know the Kurds were at odds with — or ever fighting — Damascus.

    Turkey in an odd way is the easiest country to understand in all history. Basically if there’s a few quid in it for the leader and his gang, they’ll do it (whatever it is).

  • Ingwe

    Trump is just a chicken shit, just like most of the Western leaders. Bliar, Straw, Clinton, Obama and all the bellicose blowhards who advocate war. None of them have actually served or put their off spring at risk. There seems to be an inverse relationship. The greater the bellicosity, the greater the personal cowardice.

    • Republicofscotland

      I remember watching Michael Moore’s Bowling for Columbine, or it could’ve been one of his other excellent documentaries.

      In which he and a US army sergeant stood near the Senate in Washington. He would talk to senators going about their business and they would engage in conversation with him.

      Moore then dropped a bombshell on them by producing an army form and asked the senators if they’d like to sign their kids up to fight in US wars abroad. They looked at him as though he was crazy, politely declined then quickly scurried off.

      The rich and poweful very seldom send their sons and daughters into battle. Interestingly, Dr David Livingstone’s sons died during the American Civil war, and the artist Van Gogh’s brother Theo was killed during the Great Boer war.

      • Hatuey

        Just one problem: people vote for war. They were dancing in the streets all over Europe when WWI broke out. The Americans in particular love war leaders. Typically a president’s ratings go up when they bomb someone.

        Vietnam was hugely popular with the American people until about 1969.

        Even today in Britain we hear WWII being used as an example of the good old days, often in arguments for a hard Brexit.

        They reckon Thatcher would have lost her second general election if it wasn’t for the Falklands War.

        Could go on all day.

        • Republicofscotland

          Indeed there was no more a popular war than the Great Boer war Rudyard Kipling penned many poems and ditties for it. Ordinary folk, and upperclass folk raised their own fighting regiments for it.

          It was probably one of the last wars where wives and girlfriends accompanied their gallant husbands and partners, on campaign. The Crimean war being another.

          Of course you are quite correct in some quarters in Britain today, the we won two world wars mentally still prevails. One recent example of this was Nick Ferrari a LBC host, who said jokingly to a German caller to his breakfast slot the exact same sentence.

          • Paul Barbara

            @ Republicofscotland October 11, 2019 at 19:36
            The Boer Wars were planned by the same Secret Elite Group who planned WWi from at least 1905.
            The Boer War was instigated because the Boers discovered gold and diamonds, and therefore Rhodes planned war to wrest this wealth from them. Horrendous cruelty to civilians was perpetrated, with civilians incarcerated forcibly in Concentration Camps and put on near-starvation rations, decades before Hitler copied the idea in WWii.
            See ”Hidden History: The Secret Origins of the First World War’ by Gerry Docherty and James MacGregor.

          • Republicofscotland

            Yes Paul, apart from your first sentence I’m quite aware of how the full might of Britain and its Indian and other colonies brought the full might of the empire down on the hardy Boers, culminating in poorly ran camps that led to many deaths.

            However back home in Britain, there was a zest for the war, even though the Boers tactics at Ladysmith and Spion Kop saw the British zeal for revenge peak, even the relief of Mafeking by the British troops after a Boer seige was seen as some sort of victory. The tide turned when the diminutive but resilent Field Marshall Roberts entered the fray, that and overwhelming British empire troops available to him and the not so confident Buller who had hesitated constantly on what action to take.

            Roberts paid a heavy price, his son only was killed in action.

          • Hatuey

            That being the case, then, Michael Moore’s point about politicians and their children loses its force.

            I don’t see how you can complain about politicians sending your sons to war, and not their own, when you are enthusiastic about war,

          • Republicofscotland


            Second point first, no I’m not enthusiastic about war, I’m pointing out back then before the Great war unfolded that young common men saw war as fair game, a chance to prove onself in the name of the empire, to see foreign lands etc.

            First point it was no different for the male children of officers back then, to prove to your father that you had what it took to follow in his footsteps and move up through the ranks, and possibly social class.

            Today however no one wants to send their child to war and rightly so. Moore was pointing out the hypocrisy of the senators.

          • Herbie

            “I’m pointing out back then before the Great war unfolded that young common men saw war as fair game, a chance to prove oneself in the name of the empire, to see foreign lands etc.”

            Yeah, but war before WWI had been so different. On a much more human scale.

            WWI was the first modern war, arguably the American Civil War, and it was man against machine. The meat grinder.

            Lest we forget, eh.

        • giyane.


          It’s difficult to explain something one doesn’t understand.
          Erdogan is a property developer whose head has been turned by power. So are all the world’s leaders. When there is war property is cheap and when there is peace property is expensive.

          It’s not that erdogan wants war or peace. He wants the alternation of property value to be in his hands.
          Underlying this fundamental law of capitalism there has to be moral creed. The british empire got Darwinism and white supremacy.
          Thatcher had a creed of responsibility for oneself.
          Both of these are gobshite, i.e. not based on the teachings from The prophets.

          Erdogan has the Muslim brotherhood which took its creed from the British in 1918, stating that human struggle is normal; war is healthy and morality can only enforced through political power.
          Codswallop, ignorance, opposite of Islam. Whatever one calls it, Erdogan”s slogan is jihad i.e. war.

          The same Kurdish person who told me that also told me you could convert a woman to Islam through sex. It takes wuite a lot of USUKIS torture rendition brainwashing to get there, but there is no known cure.

          Obviously getting angry and fighting is exactly what these oafs want us to do. The only way to deal with the Erdogan disease is to oppose the sect in its entirety.
          I oppose conservatism, ^there are no good Tories. I oppose nationalism in its entirety. I oppose all forms of spying. There is no good spy because we are only accountable to God.
          There is no just lie. All lying is chemical poison.
          I am not a relativist. As such when people read my comments here, it’s like someone sleeping farted in the bed.. how can there be any embarrassment when the perpetrator is unaware?

          • giyane.

            South Asian Muslims in particular are very fond of and good at tthis political approach to Islam. Like the israel and Saudi – assisted attacks on Christians and Tourists in Sri Lanka this year.

            Darlings, the word slut Erdogan used to the EU yesterday Habeebi, is it surprising that after 1200 years of Islam in India using this political method of conversion , India remains a country of Hinduism.
            And 300 years of annoying the British never brought the British any where nearer to Islam.

          • Hatuey

            Well, Giyane, that’s the first time I’ve ever heard anyone compare their own views to farts as a defence. Well done for that.

            I’m not a moral relativist either but I refrain from judging other cultures and religions out of a sort of politeness and I think europeans like myself generally should keep their noses out of things and shut up. I don’t mind criticising other Europeans though, as is my right and responsibility.

            I have nothing good to say about Turkey. Countries that avoid western invasions and attacks in that region tend to be the most reprehensible ones. Of course, we must always remember that the west (primarily the US and Britain) plays a huge part in determining the grim complexion of just about everything in that part of the world.

            It goes without saying everywhere else but with Turkey I think it’s worth saying that it’s very important to distinguish between government and people. And I think the Turkish people see very clearly what’s going on and are close to doing something about it. That’s the impression I get.

          • Iain Stewart

            “And I think the Turkish people see very clearly what’s going on and are close to doing something about it.”
            Another attempt at a coup d’état? Or something more modest, like the recent Istanbul local elections protest. If the majority of Turks really see what’s going on, without a free press.

          • Paul Barbara

            @ Iain Stewart October 12, 2019 at 17:56
            ‘The people’ had nothing to do with the last Turkish coup, any more than they did with the other three or four before it.
            Behind them was the ‘usual suspect’, Uncle ‘Regime Change’ Sam and the Turkish traitors they had ensured got in key positions in the military, ‘security services’ and other important positions.
            Luckily the loyal troops and police supported Erdogan (for all his faults, a better leader than whatever military Junta the Yanks would have installed).

        • Dungroanin

          Maggie would have still lost – if it weren’t for the neolib ‘splitters’ SDP and their gang of anti-socialists, who enabled the great reversal of the great postwar Labour gains for the people.

          • Paul Barbara

            @ Dungroanin October 12, 2019 at 08:53
            Just like the Bliarites and ‘anti-Zio hoaxers’ are trying to do now.

          • glenn_uk

            You’re welcome, RoS.

            Here’s the trailer of the bit you’re interested in :

            It’s worth seeing again, just for the expression on that Congressman’s face, when asked to actually consider his own son being signed up for a BS war he’d voted to start.

  • Tom74

    I thought it was a wise move by Trump pulling out of northern Syria. I don’t really buy the BBC narrative of the plucky Kurds being betrayed by fickle US allies. No doubt there are brave Kurds fighting for their homeland, but they are clearly also being used as proxy for nations opposed to Turkey and Russia, not to mention by the US establishment itself as a stick to beat Trump. It is better for the region to sort out its own problems.
    Once the BBC and Guardian jump on a bandwagon it immediately rings alarm bells for me. Some of the interviewees the BBC have been wheeling out who allegedly ‘fought alongside the Kurds’ also sound very suspect – there was a bloke on Radio 4 yesterday who seemed to be straight out of one of their Brexit vox pops, and I don’t trust Quentin Sommerville an inch either.

    • Hatuey

      “It is better for the region to sort out its own problems.”

      That’s quite radical. Are you suggesting we stop pumping arms into Israel, Saudi Arabia, etc.? Pull completely out of Iraq?

      Sounds good.

      • Tatyana

        I’m so sorry for Syria, it is an ancient country with immense history. Damascus is the most ancient capital city of all existing today.
        The history of the city goes as far as 4 thousands years B.C.! Can you imagine this abyss of time? At that time even the North Star was another star – Tuban, alpha Dragon.

        • Brianfujisan

          It was the Same .. Far worse ( So Far ) for Iraq, and Libya..Palestine Too.. And that is Exactly the Model they had / have for Syria.

          The West would Never get away with it if the Gutter Media – bbC, Sky ect ..Told the Truth.

          • Tatyana

            We learn at school that modern civilization originated in between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, Mesopotamia, a unique ecological diversity of flora and fauna, ‘Fertile Crescent’ where many of the species were domesticated… it is Syria.
            I’m amazed how hordes of barbarians destroy this unique country. They see nothing but oil and place for military bases. Greta Tunberg must say her word about Syria’s unique red soils.

          • Sharp Ears

            Brian. I attended a talk in August, put on by the local PSC branch, by Mazin Qumsiyeh. A very likeable man, short in stature, but large in humanity and caring, with a wicked sense of humour. He asked if there were any Zionists in the audience as he likes to take them on. We all laughed. He has been on a speaking tour in the US and in this country.

            He has lost 19 relatives, killed by the Israeli settlers over the years. He spoke about the great age of the civilisation of Palestine, its natural history and what little remains. The natural forests have mostly gone, replaced by Israeli evergreen trees. Palestinian olive trees are still being hacked out, even ones hundreds of years old. Even the Jordan is no longer a river but a small stream, such has been the extraction of water by the Israelis for their pools and gardens. Much of what he spoke was heart rending.

            Surprisingly he seems not to have hate in his heart for what has been done to his land and to his people. He sees the Israeli Occupation as temporary, like all colonial conquests which is how he sees it, whether it be 5 years or 50 years hence.

            He showed some images of the birds, plants, butterflies and insects that have lived on. Palestine is on a migration route for many birds.

            He spoke of the inequalities. He has to get a permit to travel more than 4 miles on a Palestinian only road. A newly arrived American from say Brooklyn can get into a car anywhere he wishes to.

            His blog –

            He has set up the Palestine Museum of Natural History and welcomes any volunteers who he will put up as long as they limit their water consumption.


          • Tatyana

            thanks for the link!
            It says “14 of the oldest continuously inhabited cities” of them Damascus and Aleppo – in Syria, Biblos and Sudon in Lebanon, Rayy – Iran, Erbil – Iraqi Kurdistan, Faiyum – Egypt. It also says Jerusalem and Jericho.
            Excluding China, India and Greece it is more then the half of the most ancient cities, all in the Middle East.

            Hard to believe in 11,000 years, because there still were the mammoths in the Europe 🙂

            Faiyum had a rare painting culture, realistic natural and vivid, different from the neighbouring symbolic fine arts. Here is samples.

          • Paul Barbara

            @ Tatyana October 11, 2019 at 20:48
            This very short video clip (1.34 mins.) explains what caused the abominations in Syria (it is in French, but with English subtitles):
            ‘Roland Dumas The British prepared for war in Syria 2 years before the eruption of the crisis’:
            The extreme War Criminal nature of the plan is as plain as a pike staff, but I have contacted at least a dozen Labour MP’s and only one showed any interest whatsoever. It needs to be brought up in Parliament.
            The Brits, French and Yanks (and doubtless other cronies were in on it) planned it at least as long ago as 2009.

        • On the train

          Yes Tatyana, I feel the same. I feel so sorry for Syrian people whose heritage , which should be treated with so much respect is instead insulted and destroyed, I am ashamed to come from the western countries which are savaging Syria and its people year after year with no end in sight ..

          • Tatyana

            ISIS destroyed Palmyra. It was the moment when I took the syrian war to my heart.
            Because Syrian Palmyra is the symbol, its photo is on the cover of “Ancient World Hystory” textbook in russian schools.
            Later, when we fought Palmyra back, the russian Mariinsky Theatre orchestra made a concert there.

            Strange, you hear classic music here and there on TV, radio, smartphone ringtones etc. and you think it is something as common as a plastic bag, something outdated, you feel fed up with it in school at the music lessons or during the exercices de ballet.
            But after such events you suddenly start to love it ! (ok, recent ‘singer’ winner at the israeli Eurovision also contributed a lot in my turn to the classics 🙂 )

          • glenn_uk

            Palmyra… yes indeed. It is astonishing how poor stewards we are for the future generations, we give them more reason to hate us with each passing year. Personally, I was aghast at the destruction of the Buddha statues in Afghanistan by the Taliban. 1700 years they stood, and it takes a bunch of nutcases with dynamite a passing whim to decide they will exist no more.

            But then, there are trees of not incomparable ages being destroyed right now by that fine fellow Bolsonaro in Brazil. What we – in our generation – have allowed to happen to the planet and its treasures is beyond belief, as if everything had to go in one massive fire-sale, with not a thought beyond our pleasure or convenience or enrichment as a guiding principle.

          • Tatyana

            @glenn_uk re.: future generations
            I was recently reproached by one of the commentators for a tribal feeling towards Russians. This is not true. Although it is present, but it is not defining.
            All humanity is my tribe. But damn it, these guys radical Islamists – they are also my tribe and I would be happy to explain to them what their misperception of the world is, but they don’t listen. They count the beginning of “their tribe” somewhere from the birth of their prophet. The same with the Jews – they start from their covenant with God. The US – from the colonization of their territory.
            They all are like teenagers who grew up without a family, creating their street culture. Lonely ill-bred hungry childhood = arrogant warlike and offended adults, grew up but still can’t eat too much.

          • glenn_uk

            @Tatyana – being tribal is built into our psychology, it would appear. Listened to an interesting podcast on the psychology of crowds the other day:


            We subdivide, and find ways to identify ourselves as a group, or others as outsiders, based on arbitrary criteria depending on the current issue. Usually to do with locality or allegiance.

            Religions could have been invented to subdivide us, had they not been designed for the subjugation of women of course. Nothing is more destructive in society now, and the right-wing evangelical freaks who make up a huge subset of the US are about the most dangerous of all.

            I find it astonishing that with all the information we have now, people still accept sky-spook mumbo-jumbo fantasies dreamt up by people thousands of years since, who couldn’t understand why it was dark at night, where rain came from, or the reason for ocean tides.

          • Tatyana

            Being tribal is not innate in us. We are taught this.
            I remember very well how I asked my father “why do people speak so badly about (another nation name)?” and he answered “you’ll understand when you grow up”
            I grew up, I see that people continue to criticise something ‘theirs’ and praise something ‘ours’, very much due to the tribal feeling. It is irrational and I see no reason to share this behavior.

    • giyane.


      Tell the Syrian Kurdsv in Rojava they haven’t been talking to the right people.
      Russia , Israel and the US are the power brokers in the middle east.Slut Erdogan will shag whatever politically moves for a Turkish Lira.

      The CIA has a policy of torturing its agents just to remind them who is boss. Or as Kissinger put it so delicately last time he got his Kurds massacred by one of his toadies,
      ” Some people seem to confuse strategical politics with social work.”
      Actually I e forgotten the utter cynicism of his words. That’s the gist of what he said.

      • giyane

        Kissinger on his 1973 betrayal of the Iraqi Kurds:
        ” One should not confuse covert operations with social work”
        ” The fact is, however, when Kissinger was in charge of U.S. policy for Iraq, the results for its people, particularly the Kurds, were disastrous.

        Over the decades, the Kurds quixotic struggle for some form of independence doomed them to a seemingly endless cycle of rebellion followed by incredibly vicious repression. ”

        Those uprisings were usually encouraged by enemies of Iraq’s rulers who made use of the Kurds to destabilize the regime in Baghdad. It was a ruthless, deceitful process, which resulted in hundreds of thousands of Kurds being slaughtered and displaced over the years. And it was an ideal playing field for Kissinger.

        ” Over the following weeks and months, as the killing continued, Barzani issued more desperate appeals to the CIA, to President Gerald Ford, to Henry Kissinger. No one answered. Kissinger not only refused to intervene but also turned down repeated Kurdish requests for humanitarian aid for their thousands of refugees.

        This duplicity of American officials might never have surfaced but for an investigation in 1975 by the U.S. Congress’s Select Committee on Intelligence headed by New York Democrat Otis Pike. The Pike report concluded that for Tehran and Washington the Kurds were never more than “a card to play.” A uniquely useful tool for weakening Iraq’s “potential for international adventurism.” From the beginning said the report, “The President, Dr. Kissinger, and the Shah hoped that our clients [Barzani’s Kurds] would not prevail.” The Kurds were encouraged to fight solely in order to undermine Iraq. “Even in the context of covert operations, ours was a cynical enterprise.”

        The report’s damning conclusions continued: Had the U.S. not encouraged the Kurds to go along with the Shah and renew hostilities with Iraq, “the Kurds might have reached an accommodation with [Iraq’s] central government, thus gaining at least a measure of autonomy while avoiding further bloodshed. Instead the Kurds fought on, sustaining thousands of casualties and 200,000 refugees.”

        One of the officials who testified before the committee in secret session was Henry Kissinger. When questioned by an appalled congressman about the U.S.’s decision to abandon the Kurds to their bloody fate, Kissinger chided the committee,

        “One should not confuse undercover action with social work.”

        See also :

  • Brianfujisan

    Sharp Ears Thanks for the Links

    And for the Odid Yinon Tip a few days ago..I first heard of that from Ken O’Keefe.. who was on the Mavi Mamara…He has went Very Quiet recently.

    earlier this evening I posted to my Native American of MediaLens posts – Re the disappearing Palestine Graphics… She says They did not know about this.

  • jmg

    Today’s extradition hearing (in London, and not Sacoolas’s):

    “Assange ordered to court for extradition hearing
    . . .

    “Agence France-Presse

    “Published 10:46 PM, October 11, 2019

    “LONDON, United Kingdom – WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange was ordered Friday, October 11, to make his first in-person London court appearance to determine whether he can be released from prison as he fights extradition to the United States. . . .

    “London’s Westminster Magistrates’ Court judge Tan Ikram ordered Assange to appear in person for a case management hearing on October 21.

    “The final extradition hearing has been scheduled for February 28 next year.

    “Assange used WikiLeaks to publish classified military and diplomatic files in 2010 about US bombing campaigns in Afghanistan and Iraq that proved highly embarrassing to the US government.

    “He has been making periodic appearances by video-link at administrative hearings as he tries to prove that he is no longer a flight risk and can be set free on bail due to poor health.

    “Assange looked gaunt and moved with caution as he walked into a prison holding cell and slowly seated himself to face the camera at Friday’s hearing, an Agence France-Presse reporter in court said.

    “He gave his name and age in a halting and slightly croaky voice while swaying back and forth with his shoulders slumped. . . .

    “Assange and his international supporters view all cases against him as political and his treatment as inhumane.”

    Assange ordered to court for extradition hearing — October 11, 2019

  • Sharp Ears

    This is an extremely long and detailed piece from Vanessa Beeley,

    SYRIA: Turkey, the Kurds and NATO explained
    There is a growing confusion over the situation in the north-east of Syria – Turkey, a NATO member state, is de facto challenging other NATO member states by attacking a U.S proxy force occupying the region. The Kurdish contras and separtist factions that make up the SDF (Syrian Democratic Forces) are the apparent target.

    I have compiled a list of articles and videos that may enable people to untangle the complex and extremely precarious conflict that is developing east of the Euphrates. I will add to them and update this article as and when I am able to.


    h/t TLN Ken Waldron

  • David

    the US National Security Agency apparently respond to Craig, (this blog is quoted), in a Washington Examiner article

    Astonishingly, the NSA appears to blame the US Central Intelligence Agency for the whole kerfuffle.

    The wife herself has previously been listed as a State Department employee, of course she may have been a State Department worker although CIA officers under diplomatic cover are officially listed as State Department employees.

    “The Examiner is known for its conservative political stance and features many known conservative writers….. it is aimed at serious readers in the nation’s capital”

    • Hatuey

      Wow, they’ve even referred to me: “a highly respected and authoritative commentator on the site named Hatuey, renowned for his unparalleled intelligence and astonishingly excellent vibes…”

      • David

        So if “the diplomat” is CIA, then what could he have been doing at HMS Croughton?
        Regime Change, illegal rendition, training ‘mercenaries’, professionally lying about something in the UK, EU? Running a disinformation system staffed by respected & authoritative commentators, who knows!

        A US senator recently asked a silly question about the CIA on NBC…

        and before we all (and you especially Hatuey) start thinking that the ‘honest’ NSA and all the other FVEY mathematicians & officers are the nicest people on the planet, going for the bad guys, upholding national security – here New Zealand Television reports that several illegal acts of spying were aimed at preventing ‘national embarrassment’ .

        • OnlyHalfALooney

          RAF Croughton houses the 422nd Air Base Group whose function is to provide installation support, services, force protection, and worldwide communications across the entire spectrum of operations. The group is located in the UK and supports NATO, US European Command, US Central Command, Air Force Special Operations Command, US Department of State operations and Ministry of Defence operations. The group sustains more than 450 C2 circuits and supports 25 percent of all European Theater to continental United States (CONUS) communications.

          The Register in 2017:
          The base is notorious for relaying information stolen direct from German chancellor Angela Merkel’s mobile phone back to the US for analysis.

          It also houses a number of communications masts used for broadcasts to American spies abroad, as veteran investigative journalist Duncan Campbell revealed. “Tech support activity” takes place there but RAF Croughton’s most high-profile role is as a relay station for the American Special Collection Service, the joint NSA/CIA unit that targets foreign countries, friendly and hostile, for snooping purposes.

          In other words, there’s every reason for CIA to be there in addition to the NSA and US/UK/NATO military.

          Anne Sacoolas probably isn’t trained as a CIA agent. Apparently, she reacted with complete panic after the accident. Agents are trained not to panic. (Unless the “panic” was all feigned. Never trust appearances.) But intelligence services have plenty of desk jobs: analysts, linguists, scientists, technicians, etc. and psychologists. Anne Sacoolas has a psyschology degree.

          All we really know is that the US government arranged for their hasty departure via a flight from a US airbase. And there must be a reason for that. And this all happened before the story became publicly known.

          Probably worst of all is the whole charade put on by Johnson and Raab. It is obvious that the US won’t leave intelligence officers exposed in the field. The UK government must know that. Instead they are putting out a whole sham story about “diplomatic immunity”.

        • Hatuey

          “what could he have been doing at HMS Croughton?”

          Picking up tickets for the Christmas panto? I can’t believe that’s a serious question.

          After Snowden’s revelations, the CIA secured its place in the hall of fame alongside the stasi and savak and serious discussion on its character and purpose ended. Actually Snowden only confirmed what most of us knew anyway so that criticism of the CIA became moot and meaningless several decades ago.

          I’m sure I don’t need to explain it to you, David, the big thing today for most western intelligence agencies is basically industrial espionage. In America’s case that means most operatives might as well be on the payroll of household-name tech and oil companies.

          History and politics basically ended in 1989. Since then we’ve all been fighting for contracts. Maybe we were naive to think it was ever really any different, when you boil it all down.

  • SummerKaren

    [ MOD: Caught in spam-filter, timestamp updated ]

    1) Americans who are diplomats usually have a special diplomatic passport. If she or her husband have that the United States considered them diplomats.

    2) I would want to know if Anne Sacoolas was using a GPS app and if it was hacked, the same for Harry Dunn. The CIA orchestrate traffic accidents. The outcome of Harry Dunn’s death might not be what they intended. Perhaps Anne Sacoolas was the target, perhaps the intent was just to get them to leave, opening up a job. The CIA are a bunch of sociopaths. #abolishthecia

    • Paul Barbara

      @ SummerKaren October 12, 2019 at 11:52
      What on earth difference could it possibly make if Harry Dunn’s GPS was hacked? Do you think a local motorcyclist uses GPS around his local area, and even if he did, he would chuck it in the bin if it told him to drive on the wrong side of the road.

  • Mary Pau!

    Presumably DSMA notices do not apply in the States to US MSM. Does that mean there is potentially more information available there on line about Anna Sacoolas, if she is “merely” a diplomatic wife. ? Does the US have a similar censorship system to the D notice in the UK, to conceal the identity of CIA agents?

  • michael norton

    Lawyer Radd Seiger asked for those with information “before, during, or after her departure” to come forward.

    Mr Dunn’s parents, who have previously said they are considering civil action against Mrs Sacoolas, are set to fly out to the US on Sunday and will visit both New York and Washington DC.

    Mr Seiger said they would be “engaging with the media and politicians as they reach out for support from all Americans and to ask them to put pressure on the US administration to do the right thing”.

    good for them,
    do not let it drop.

  • Sharp Ears

    More from Craig to follow.

    Craig Murray
    2 hours ago
    Absolutely boiling and furious about the stream of blatant lies pouring out of the FCO on diplomatic immunity in the Sacoolas case. Been working on a magnum opus for three days. Hopefully publish in a couple of hours.

  • Sharp Ears

    Trump appears to be planning relocating US troops to Saudi Arabia.

    ‘Henry Jones
    21 hours ago
    NEW: Sources tell Reuters that the United States is planning to send thousands of additional troops to Saudi Arabia following the recent attack on Saudi oil facilities

    Henry Jones –
    Journalist covering defence & international security | Found at @UKDefJournal

  • Steve Wells

    From the header article on BBC.CO.UK today –

    Diplomatic immunity is by no means restricted to those named on the Diplomatic List. Drivers, cooks and other support staff who have been accredited to Britain (“the receiving state”) have the same diplomatic status and immunity.

    Unquote. This needs to be reviewed.

  • Pyewacket

    I’m still intrigued as to why they absconded, and who it was that advised and authorised that. Seems to me that had Mrs S stayed to face the music, she wouldn’t have to face anything more serious than the local Magistrates Court. With a guilty plea, mitigation in being unused to driving in the UK, and decent expression of remorse, there’s a high probability she would not be facing any Gaol time. I heard the Dunns say in interview, that they’d be happy with a suspended sentence, so as not to separate Mrs S from her children. The case would be over in minimal time, and reported no further than local press and TV news. But no, the entire family are whisked off home, and what could have been kept low key, and barely reported, has no blown into a huge scandal that has highlighted and number of problems regarding our so called special relationship. Perhaps more will come out, who knows, but I think the PTB want this buried asap. Long grass here we come !

  • Jim Davidson

    Members of “Adminstrative and Technical Staff” in or attached to a mission are not attaches nor assistant attaches on diplomatic lists provided to host countries. However, they receive most all diplomatic privileges. But, for example, they can be sued by host country citizens or third country nationals, while those on the diplomatic list cannot.

  • james mccabe

    dear sir it is a crime and president trump most have been duped by is intelligence service as he said sarcoolas was a diplomat did some of mr sarcoolas intelligence friends ( rigged is details) ?????????????? and that is a crime.

    yours sincerely james.

  • Darian Lyons

    Hello Craig,

    I cannot find anywhere to puchase your book “murder in samarkind”
    both on your website and Amazon.

    Are there still print copies available? PDF’s?

    Thank you in advance,

    Darian Lyons

    [ Mod: It’s out of print, but available on:

    Regards. ]

  • Sharp Ears

    ‘Craig Murray
    23 hours ago
    I am claiming it as a personal victory that the BBC is now referring to Sacoolas as a “US Intelligence Official” instead of a “Diplomat”, only thirteen days after I first told them.
    “Spy” would be a lot simpler.’

    Loving it.

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