Sy Hersh and The Way We Live Now 791

It is a clear indicator of the disappearance of freedom from our so-called western democracies, that Sy Hersh, arguably the greatest living journalist, cannot get this monumental revelation on the front of the Washington Post or New York Times, but has to self-publish on the net.

Hersh tells the story of the US destruction of the Nordstream pipelines in forensic detail, giving dates, times, method and military units involved. He also outlines the importance of the Norwegian armed forces working alongside the US Navy in the operation.

One point Sy does not much stress, but it is worth saying more about, is that Norway and the USA are of course the two countries who have benefitted financially, to an enormous degree, from blowing up the pipeline.

Both not only have gained huge export surpluses from the jump in gas prices, but Norway has directly replaced Russian gas to the tune of some $40 billion per year. From 2023 the United States will appear in that list in second place behind Norway, following the opening in the last two months of two new Liquefied Natural Gas terminals in Germany, built to replace Russian gas with US and Qatari supplies.

So Russia lost out massively financially from the destruction of Nordstream and who benefited? The USA and Norway, the two countries who blew up the pipeline.

But of course, this war is nothing to do with money or hydrocarbons and is all about freedom and democracy…

To return to Hersh’s account, particularly interesting are the series of decisions taken to avoid classification of the operation in various ways which would require it to be reported to Congress. In terms of United States history, this ought to be a big deal.

For the Executive to commit what is an act of war without the approval of the Legislature is fundamentally unconstitutional. But that is one of those quaint remnants of democracy that the neo-liberal elite consensus can quietly sidestep nowadays.

Hersh sets out the well known background in compelling detail,  including the fact that, from Biden down, the Americans effectively announced what they were going to do, openly.

But what most worries me about the entire story is the unanimous complicity of the mainstream media in ignoring the completely obvious.

The media line, parroted here relentlessly by the BBC and corporate media, was  that the Russians had probably themselves blown up the pipeline on which they had expended such great resources and three decades of intense diplomatic activity, and which was to be the key to Russia’s single most valuable source of income for the next 40 years.

This was always quite literally incredible. You would have to be deranged to believe it.

It actually taught me not just that we truly are in the realm of totalitarianism and the Big Lie, but I learnt something very important about how the Big Lie works.

The secret is not that people genuinely believe an outrageous claim. The secret is that people do genuinely believe that they are in a battle of good against evil, and it is necessary to accept the narrative being promoted, in the interests of fighting evil.

Don’t question, just follow. If you do question, you are promoting evil.

I am sure that is how it works.

State and corporate stenographer journalists are actually intelligent individuals. If they thought about it, they would realise that the narrative that Russia blew up its own pipeline is obvious nonsense.

But they are convinced it is morally wrong to think about it.

Which is why none of them challenged the equally mad claims that Russia was repeatedly shelling its own forces occupying the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power station, and indeed is why none of them challenged the utterly risible official version of the Skripal story.

I previously told the anecdote from when I worked in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and asked a good friend if he really believed the misinformatioin on Iraqi WMD with which he was involved.

He replied by referring to the video game Championship Manager (now renamed Football Manager), which we used to play together. He said when he was in the game, it was immersive, he was manager of Liverpool, and it fully absorbed him.

Similarly, when he walked through the FCO gates, the world of the intelligence reports was immersive and Iraq did have these WMDs inside that world. He worked in the “reality” of the FCO. Once he left in the evening, he lived in a different reality, the world of us in the pub.

I do know of one or two journalists bright enough to detach their professional output from what they really think, in a similar way. (I once had a conversation along these lines with Jeremy Bowen in Tashkent.)

Most however don’t think like this. They simply think that all right thinking people support the historic struggle against the evil Russians, so it must be right to read out the propaganda without thinking too much about it.

Those of us critical of the aggressive promotion of war in Europe, are not only barred from all mainstream media and confined to corners of the internet, and even then heavily suppressed on social media (which is why Sy Hersh’s article does not have the scores of millions of readers it merits).

We can’t even obtain freedom of assembly.

Two established left wing venues have cancelled the No 2 Nato meeting I am addressing in London on 25 February. Conway Hall’s reasons for cancellation included threats to funding and fears for the safety of staff.

We are now reduced to a guerrilla meeting, the Central London venue for which will not be announced until the evening before.

Is this really a democracy, where it is not possible for dissidents to hold a public meeting without secrecy, subterfuge and hiding from supporters of the state?

I do urge you to come along on the day, whatever your views on the subject, to support the right to freedom of speech.

I have a different view from perhaps all of the other speakers, on the legitimacy of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which I oppose.

But I also oppose NATO expansion which is an underlying cause of the war, and indeed oppose the existence of NATO itself.

NATO is a war machine which sucks resources from working people to benefit the military industrial complex, and unleashes devastating destruction on developing states which do not make their natural resources available to western billionaire elites.

It is also a fundamental node of the propaganda apparatus which manipulates and controls our society, particularly as counter narrative and dissident thought is now rigorously and systematically excluded.

There is no longer an Overton window of permitted debate. It has narrowed and should be renamed the Overton letterbox.

One of those small difficult ones right down at the bottom of the door.  With a very fierce spring, and snarling dogs guarding it.


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791 thoughts on “Sy Hersh and The Way We Live Now

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  • Jack

    The censorship throughout europe on this bombshell is sickening, if Hersh came forward with sources claiming it was Russia -the same media would of course be filled with this news. Hell, west would have already imposed sanctions and perhaps even used it as a declaration of war!

    Since Nordstream was also owned by Germany and, unless Germany was in on this sabotage, how can they keep living this lie with the US? You have US destroying their pipelines they invested so much money in and now Germany have to buy more expensive gas from the US.
    How could this be? Are everyone asleep at the wheel in europe? They should be furious!

    Situation is hopeless but I really hope atleast Russia will not be silent on Hersh revelation.

    • Fat Jon

      “Situation is hopeless but I really hope atleast Russia will not be silent on Hersh revelation.”

      I believe they will not, as the Sy Hersh article came to my Twitter feed from Edward Snowden. Presumably, he is in regular contact with the Russian establishment?

      Sadly, there is no hope for the BBC, because of their antics concerning inquiries into Jimmy Savile. Their complicity in the cover up of his activities, involving the entire British establishment, mean that they are now open to continuous blackmail from the security services. Their only alternative is to tell the truth and watch as the licence fee is abolished and they are cherry-picked by private industry.

      On the Ukraine front, how rude of those pesky earthquakes in Turkey to hog the news headlines. How can they ever get Ukraine back to dominance? Wait…… Just force the president to visit the King, and the UK PM at short notice. That should get any human catastrophe demoted to a second string story; and it has certainly worked with the grovelling Guardian.

    • Jane Morrison

      Perhaps the people who govern the social order of Germany work for the same mob as the US/Norway/NATO lot, and don’t really give a damn about the regular working class people of Germany or anywhere else.. Such is the way in all nations where heads of state are no more than civil servants for the trans-national corporatist rulers who control the cash flow at the highest (or is that lowest) level.. A wider agenda is afoot to destroy what’s left of democratic systems, steal what’s left of the social wealth, collapse fiat currency, so a globalist CBDC control system can be implemented. It’s becoming more obvious every day. Mass bloodletting and the traumatisation of many millions has been their game plan for many generations.. Satisfies their sadism for a while and also means the population are easier to control.

  • Peter

    Wow! I had not realised that when Biden asserted – “If Russia invades, that means tanks or troops crossing the border of Ukraine again, then there will be no longer a Nord Stream 2. We will bring an end to it” – that Chancellor Scholz was standing right next to him.

    “It is a clear indicator of the disappearance of freedom from our so-called western democracies … ”

    “So-called” indeed. British democracy is comatose, knocked flat on its back, and in need of urgent attention with no sign of help anywhere to be seen. Indeed those who should be coming to its support are complicit in its condition.

    Democracy (in theory) is essentially accountability of those in power to the public. That fundamentally requires that the public are fully informed about the running of their country. When we have a completely controlled media that uniformly and brazenly lies to the public on the most important matters then ‘democracy’ has become meaningless.

    “I do know of one or two jounalists bright enough to detach their professional output from what they really think, in a similar way (I once had a conversation along these lines with Jeremy Bowen in Tashkent).”

    I regarded Jeremy Bowen as the last journalist standing at the BBC (much to the chagrin of the Israeli government) but sadly he too has now fallen in with the Establishment pro-war narrative.

    When the BBC supports Neo-nazis you know we are in a bad place. The BBC as a trustworthy source of news is now dead as a dodo. I believe attempts are being made to bring the dodo back from extinction. I hope we will see a similar revitalisation of the BBC but, as with our democracy, the necessary support is currently nowhere to be seen.

    “I have a different view from perhaps all of the other speakers, on the legitimacy of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which I oppose.”

    How then Craig, do you suggest that Russia should have protected itself from the threat of the feral Neo-con psychopaths in Washington (the primary criminals in this piece who have knowingly and deliberately precipitated the destruction of Ukraine in their proxy war), and the people of Donetsk from slaughter by its own government?

    The threat to Russia has been clear at least since the Neo-cons’ ‘Project For The New American Century’ of the late 1990s which was embodied in the GW Bush administrations; was clarified in Neo-con Paul Wolfowitz’s “Wolfowitz Doctrine”; was strengthened after Putin’s 2007 Munich speech in which he castigated America’s war in Iraq and forcefully asserted Russia’s independence and refusal to kowtow to Washington; and is articulately detailed in the Rand document “Extending Russia” –

    International law has gone the way of British democracy; the UN has become an embarrassing head-nodding forum; both of the Minsk agreement’s were reneged upon, and as we now know only used to gain time to prepare for war; further Russian proposals for cross-European security were contemptuously dismissed and not even replied to by Washington; over 3000 Donetsk civilians lay dead amongst the 15000 toll of the ‘civil’ war and not a finger was being lifted in Europe, and certainly not in the US, to stop this – quite the opposite in fact.

    How was Russia to respond to this?

    • Bayard

      “If Russia invades, that means tanks or troops crossing the border of Ukraine again, then there will be no longer a Nord Stream 2. We will bring an end to it”

      It has generally been an assumption that the destruction of the Nordstreams was a result of the war in Ukraine, but now it looks like that it could have been a reason.

      • Lysias

        The US and its allies were doing their best to provoke Russia to attack. The final provocation was on Feb. 15, 2022 at the Munich Security Conference, when Zelensky indicated in a speech that Ukraine was going to (re)acquire nuclear weapons. He met with Kamala Harris at that conference, and she was presumably in the audience when he spoke. It’s a safe bet that the text of that speech was vetted by US officials.

  • Anthony

    Yes probably the most shocking act ever of environmental terror,, intended to dramatically increase energy costs in Europe. The perpetrators happy that it will have a profound impact on European businesses and households for decades to come.

    There is though a big upside to reporters ignoring who is responsible. The most important stuff. This way we get to continue to praise the USA as the world’s white hat hero, nobly and selflessly intervening everywhere on behalf of Freedom and Democracy. Even as our economies and standards of living collapse we can remain No. 1 Cheerleaders for the USA. Our media and politicians consider that a very good trade off.

    • pretzelattack

      well remember the UK doesn’t have to stand behind treaties it signs, on the ground it has not “ratified” them by signing them. i don’t know what Germany’s and Norway’s excuses are.

  • AG

    as CM in above article mentions the issue of supporting the invasion (“legitimacy of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine”), which poses the real problem for the left and its unity:

    a couple of questions:

    – what do we know so far did the Russians do since 2014 on the diplomatic level to resolve this peacefully?

    – how were those attempts possibly thwarted?

    I am having in mind e.g. former diplomat Hans von Sponeck´s argument that of course international institutions like the UN, IMF, OSCE are still under heavy influence from the “West”.

    I remember a minor scandal regarding OSCE monitoring mission in Donbas and attempted manipulation by some UK members of that mission why they were eventualy replaced.

    – what could the Russians have done differently aka “not invade”?

    knowing that the Ukrainians were using the Minsk agreements as a disguise arming themselves (I do not want to entirely discard Minsk´s true purpose!)
    knowing that the EU did not put as much effort into realizing Minsk as they had claimed aka “they were lying”
    knowing that the US could have erased any promise made by Germany/France to Russia to keep Ukraine neutral any time – Nordstream being an example for American fait accompli politics

  • Squeeth

    For the last twenty years Britain has resembled Germany, circa 1937. We’re the old farts who can remember the empire and the Weimar republic and sound like we’re from another planet.

    • John Cleary

      Germany, circa 1937. That’s about right.

      Remember this?

      Queen makes Nazi salute in video (The Sun, 18 Jul 2015) – YouTube, 0m 16s

      As usual, the MSM went with their talking points: “It was Edward, the bastard!”
      But examine the footage closely. Edward is the follower, not the leader.
      Elizabeth the mother is clearly setting the example. SHE was the Naughty. And she ran the country from 1936 to 2002.

      Hardly surprising the country exhibits the traits found in that far-right ideology, is it?

      Pray that Putin succeeds in de-Naughtifying Europe.

      By the way, Craig, you do know about the chemical and biological laboratories in Ukraine connected to Hunter Biden, don’t you?

      Do THEY make the SMO legal after all?

      • Bayard

        The problem about this story is that we have no idea why they were doing it. Even then, plenty of people were mocking the Nazis by making such a salute.

        ” And she ran the country from 1936 to 2002.”
        Well, the Elizabethan dictatorship has certainly been airbrushed out of history. It’s really incredible how it has been hushed up until now. All the time we thought it was Maggie Thatcher hammering the unions, closing down the mines and steelworks and selling off our industry and it was really Elizabeth the Queen Mother.

        • Ian Stevenson

          the Queen Mother lost a brother in the First world War and usually, I read, referred to the Germans as the Huns, and remained anti-German.
          She didn’t much like Edward either.

        • John Cleary

          Sure, Bayard, I get the mockery. But consider these:

          Statute of Westminster (1931) – No way to get rid of the Windsors before they get rid of you.

          Treason Felony Act (1848) – It is illegal for “any person whatsoever” to place any force or constraint on the Queen*

          *You are clearly an erudite chap, Bayard. Do you remember this

          Any thoughts as to WHY it is a breach to touch the Queen?
          Is there any other person one must not touch?

          • Bayard

            “Anti-German but decidedly Pro-Nazi.”

            Can you give any reason for it being pro-Nazi, apart from your quite obvious hatred for the Royal family and all that is associated with them?

            “Any thoughts as to WHY it is a breach to touch the Queen?”

            It’s not, judging by the news story you linked to, or was the chap shown shaking hands with her subsequently carted off to the Tower for the rest of her days?

          • John Cleary

            Can you give any reason for it being pro-Nazi, apart from your quite obvious hatred for the Royal family and all that is associated with them?

            When you say “reason for it being pro-Nazi” are you still referring to Bowes-Lyon? If so, then yes, of course. Her hatred of and contempt for Bolshevism, for Russia and for the English people.

            Prime Ministers come and go. But the hatred for Russia endures, as we see today.

            It’s not, judging by the news story you linked to

            You are not much of a judge, are you? I’ll have to reconsider your accolade as “erudite” after this.
            When you shake hands you are responding to an invitation, and hence not in breach.
            When you place your hand upon her unbidden then you are indeed putting a force or constraint upon her, and that’s why the British media pilloried Keating as “The Lizard of Oz” for the rest of his career.

  • Roger

    Craig believes that Putin was wrong to invade Ukraine, but you have to ask yourself, what was the alternative?

    After the coup in Ukraine, NATO expansion into Ukraine was the next step, and obviously Belarus would be next. After Putin just stands by and watches all that happen, the US gets missile bases within 60km of Smolensk (on the main road to Moscow) and within 60km of Rostov. This probably gives it a first-strike capability. Moscow could be obliterated before Putin’s staff could wake him up to give out the nuclear codes for retaliation.

    Russia would probably retain some retaliatory capacity from missile submarines – though the US navy would be able to take out some of them simultaneously with the missile strike. America’s Patriot anti-missile defences would protect against some submarine-launched missiles. Probably a few would get through, killing millions of Americans. But in the deranged minds of Washington’s neocons, safe in their bunkers, a few million casualties among the peons would be a price worth paying for obliterating Russia.

    Yes: this line of reasoning is lunacy. Only insane people would think like this. But Washington is run by such people.

    • Tatyana

      I think that Mr. Murray’s position is obvious – if Russia had a mandate from the UN for military intervention, then it could be called legal. And I think that’s why the Russian government insists on the term Special Military Operation.
      I am not an expert in this area, I hope someone who understands such subtleties could comment on the terminology.
      So far, I see that neither Russia nor Ukraine has officially declared war. This makes me think that “war” is a term used in media, and perhaps in reality specialists like lawyers cannot qualify it as such.
      Would be nice to get an informed expert opinion on war / SMO difference.

      • intp1

        I think the legalities of not declaring war or the definition of an SMO are more to do with the internal legal requirements of Russia to begin with, in terms of what was required to “mobilize” etc. Later, as somebody allegedly said, blowing up the gas lines would be considered an act of war, although on which country? Possibly both Germany and Russia, however Germany is not pressing charges in this domestic altercation.
        This is a very stressful time for most of us but I want to say please try not to feel “under attack” not by this forum, not by me and not, I believe by Mr. Murray. Everybody here is outraged by how this situation was carefully and illegally provoked. Some might be hung up on resorting to aggression across a border but this is a reflex; they do not offer an alternate path. If anything the efforts to avoid this conflict (watching extreme aggressive acts by Kiev for 7 years, Massive investment in facilitating Minsk, writing to each member of NATO with a clear offer to discuss alternatives) are above and beyond any previous run up to war that I can think of. The West was offered clear, peaceful alternate paths. History is on Russia’s side IMO.

      • Lysias

        If the SMO was a violation of international law, then so was JFK’s quarantine ( a euphemism for “blockade”) of Cuba. And they were for essentially the same reason.

    • Lapsed Agnostic

      Re: ‘Moscow could be obliterated before Putin’s staff could wake him up to give out the nuclear codes for retaliation.’

      If Moscow believes itself to be in imminent danger of a decapitation strike by NATO, Roger, it can always switch on its Dead Hand / Perimeter system. It doesn’t have to invade Ukraine.

      Re: ‘America’s Patriot anti-missile defences would protect against some submarine-launched missiles.’

      No, they ****ing wouldn’t – and, despite official test results, I don’t believe their Ground-Based Midcourse Defence System would either. It’s like trying to hit a speeding bullet with another bullet – except not as easy.

      Washington’s neocons may be safe in their bunkers, but the question is what happens when they have to come out of their bunkers? I doubt whether many of the DC residents who’ve somehow managed to survive without a bunker will be particularly interested in emulating the slaves by rebuilding the nation’s capital in all its former glory.

    • Bayard

      “After the coup in Ukraine, NATO expansion into Ukraine was the next step, ”

      Ah, but would it have been? It seems pretty likely that Ukraine was never going to be allowed into NATO. It increasingly looks like Ukraine’s role was always to be invaded by Russia. If they were a member of NATO, this would immediately trigger Article 5 and WWIII, which is not what was wanted. By keeping Ukraine out of NATO, the US now has a war against Russia which they can fight at arms length using Ukrainians, not GIs. I doubt they have forgotten Vietnam that quickly.

  • Tatyana

    Russia is not silent on Hersh revelation.
    In today’s news
    the headline says:
    “Nord Streams are blown up by a terrorist state”

    The links in the article lead to other news:
    “The White House called Hersh’s publication about the explosions at Nord Stream a lie”
    “The journalist clarified who ordered the launch of the operation against Nord Streams”
    “Lavrov commented on Nuland’s reaction to the Nord Stream explosions”
    “Journalist Hersh confirmed the authorship of the article about the explosions at Nord Stream”
    “Member of the State Duma urged to discuss the investigation of journalist Hersh in the UN Security Council”

    I’m sorry, I cannot check with other Russian media at the moment. I have to finish some ordered silver things and ship it today. I’ll come back later to inform you of what is in Russian news, ok?

    I’m also allowed to invite you to the discussion forum, re. modi agendi of certain organisations, and their connections with media.

  • nevermind

    And here we were wondering why Norway was concerned/paranoid that their gas pipeline could also be attacked by closely monitoring its facilities using its armed forces.
    Did they fear that they could have been discovered? ensuring that their own profits would bubble away in the North Sea?
    or was Norway worried that their acts would be discovered? or did they not trust the Biden-Blinken-Nuland triad to not repeat the same act on their now lucrative main exports to Europe?

    As we are expecting a local election soon, the analogy of Craig’s last paragraph of the Overton window being a letterbox at the bottom of the door guarded by a snarling dog and a powerful spring, is excellent, cap duffed.
    It is very much desirable, as national and local absence of representation has been shown in many multiple ways, that his local election is a total disaster for the governing cabal, despite many potholes being furtively filled and Tories patting themselves on the back for doing nothing at all.
    More to be said of Nato’s ignorance of its own guidance and rules, ‘one for all and all for one’, has been obsoleted by a rogue hegemonist walking all over its own allies and splitting itself apart, Americas last Rumpelstilzken moment, ripping up everything to keep its MIC going and fuck the rest of the world.

    Thanks for writing another belter. If the trains are running on the 25th, I will be wherever it happens.

  • portside

    Brzezinski wrote in The Grand Chessboard that for the US to perpetuate its post-Cold War hegemony it was essential to forestall any alliance between Germany and Russia. This is obviously what motivated the destruction of Nord Stream, as well as spying a fresh avenue for corporate profitmaking. Far less clear is what European leaders and their journalists imagine they have got out of it.

    • Roger

      Far less clear is what European leaders … imagine they have got out of it.

      Yes, this is a really interesting question.

      It’s clear that ordinary European citizens lose a lot by Europe’s subservience to the USA. Russia is a natural ally, not a threat: it has the raw materials, we want to import them and turn them into manufactured goods.

      By artificially cutting off EU/Russia trade, the USA strengthens its hegemony by weakening two non-US economies at once. German industry, cut off from cheap energy, will be unable to compete with US industry. Not only do US natural-gas exporters profit immediately, but Boeing and others will profit in the longer term as European industry dies.

      People like Boris Johnson and Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer don’t care about us plebs, of course; what’s important to people like that is being seen on the “global stage”, even in a pathetic subordinate role to whichever figurehead occupies the White House.

  • Jack

    Like Stuxnet sabotage I reckon this news will pour out incrementally and be hailed as something good by the western msm.

    Next week the neocons will meet in Germany for the annual Munich security meeting, topic: ‘Russia’s breaking of the rule based order.’
    “Almost one year after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the MSC 2023 will also provide an opportunity to take stock of alliance cohesion and political commitment to the rules-based international order. ”

    Apparently, the bombing of a german/russian pipeline is not a crime against the rule based order.
    Germany need to rid itself of the american influence, how can they be manipulated to this?
    Where is France?

  • Hans Adler

    Here is what the coverage of this revelation of a US act of war against Germany looks like in German mainstream online media:

    – Nothing on the main pages.
    – If you specifically search for “nordstream hersh”, you get a few articles that talk about Seymour Hersh’s accusations in the broadest terms, give US denials equal weight, and paint Hersh as a conspiracy theorist.

    In other news, in January a properly licensed local German radio station (Radio Dreyeckland) was searched and had all its equipment confiscated (since returned, after copying the data). The pretext: A notification that the prosecution had stopped proceedings against the local Indymedia branch (, links unten = bottom left meaning both politically and geographically) had supposedly been too sympathetic. The prosecution and a judge in Karlsruhe thought it appropriate to search many journalists’ homes in order to potentially find *exonerating* material in this context. They even tried to subpoena the internet provider for all IP addresses of anyone accessing the radio station’s website (

    • Bayard

      It’s as if the last 90 years never happened. I do not think it is a coincidence that those who were adults back then have mostly now died.

  • GFL

    How disgusting was that performance in Westminster Hall yesterday, our elected representatives stooping to levels even my wild imagination would have thought impossible? When the speaker of the house introduced Zelensky to Starmer, would it not have been nice for him to say, here is the leader of the government opposition, we do not ban them, lock them up, or make them disappear.

    • nevermind

      Absolutely agree, GFL, they were falling over themselves to be there, feigning support in the absence of our mandate. When it comes to our services, the NHS, the failing rail system due to wage restraints by them, they can hardly show up to debate it.

      I’m surprised that Sy Hersh did not say much about Liz Truss txt. to A. Blinken, unless, off course, she was briefed, it happened and her almost instant response referred to Anthony Blinkens bed being prepared, ‘It’s done’ she said, awaiting bigger and better things to happen to her faltering career.

      Why did Liz Truss txt. Blinken 2 minutes after the Norwegian/the hegemonist’s blew up NS2? when we had nothing to do with it?
      what was her need to do so? maybe a psychiatrist can explain her behaviour.

  • Tatyana

    Actually, I think it’s too early to take Hersh’s publication on faith. I trust how Mr. Murray appreciates his reputation, but we already know that the reliability of the information does not depend on the reputation of the source. Whether it’s a crystal clean reputation, or vice versa, a former contract killer with a cocaine habit. This works both ways.
    It cannot be discounted that Mr. Hersh was fed misinformation.
    It would be best to initiate an investigation and wait for its result.

    But I’m afraid that, like in the story with Hunter Biden’s laptop, as in the story with biolabs in Ukraine, Mr. Hersh’s story will be declared a lie, Russian propaganda, and so on, and there will be no investigation.

  • intp1

    Re the related topic of sending fighter jets to Ukraine:
    Hypothesis- Sending jets to Kiev has no military value in that-
    * It takes 3 years to train a pilot to perform adequately in such equipment, which is an entirely new collection of systems and environment.
    * That for the brief period that they will actually fly, they will be going up against essentially Russian “Top Gun” level aviators and Air Defense systems; Ukraine has already numerically lost their air force more than once over.
    * That there is no place on the ground for Ukrainian jets to operate. Currently their Soviet era jets use makeshift air fields and motorways, hiding under bridges etc. Western Jets require runways which are smooth, mechanically swept and clean as apposed to Soviet/Russian jets which have always been designed to use improvised rough and ready surfaces.
    *The Russian air defence systems in the area are not just the most effective in the world, they are highly integrated. A network of S-300/S-400/ S-500 ground based but mobile systems, then also combining data from permanently stationed high altitude Russian Mig 31, Su-35, Su-57 in which targets can be seen by everyone in the network, detected by fusing data from multiple radar bands plus thermal and optical sensors etc. Once identified, the computers then can select from any number of the same platforms and weapons to suppress or shoot down even stealthy jets of which the F-16 or the Eurofighter are not in the least stealthy.
    * IMO the purpose of sending such equipment (similarly for the promised tanks) is not to provide the slightest military advantage to Kiev. The purpose is a long standing, primary objective of the MIC, to transfer money from us and our grandchildren to their greedy pockets and that Ukraine is a trash compactor designed to clear used equipment so as to to create a market for procurement for their replacement.
    * In the case of Eurofighter Typhoons, the objective is doubly cynical because these jets are made by a German consortium but they will ultimately be replaced by the American flying lemons officially known as F-35s as one more nail in Germany’s economic coffin.

    • Stevie Boy

      Re. sending Jets and arms to the Nazi’s in Ukraine.
      One has to ask, “does the UK have any enemy that has done as much to destroy the country as the Government ?”
      – Defence destroyed;
      – Healthcare destroyed;
      – Education destroyed;
      – Manufacturing destroyed;
      – Economy destroyed;
      – etc. etc. etc.
      I suggest that that nice Mr. Hitler never did so much damage as the bunch of incompetent, corrupt, liars who supposedly run the country.

  • Highlander

    Dear Craig, You should really be President of the Republic of Scotland. A thousand thank yous for your righteous reporting, your integrity, your great strength of character and your good humour. You should know that there are many Scots who greatly appreciate your work, so don’t let the yapping dogs get you down. On a personal note I joined the Alba party after following your blog, so thank you for that as well.

  • Loftwork

    I read Hersh’s report yesterday. It made perfect sense, so much so I was tempted to dismiss it as old hat. But it will now be submerged ‘for the Greater Good’, or whatever the preferred meme is. You said “The secret is that people do genuinely believe that they are in a battle of good against evil, and it is necessary to accept the narrative being promoted, in the interests of fighting evil.” This is obviously true, easy to validate empirically. But it is also the root of paranoid psychosis, the self-referential loop which is utterly impregnable to reason. This inevitably causes great suffering. How to mitigate it? It is a religious crusade, almost medieval in attitude. The Buddha in the first known sutra said that enlightenment begins with suffering. There are global forces in play right now, including de-dollarisation and the push to war with China, the cost of living crisis and (predictably) global famine. I see no redemption ahead, just unnecessary suffering for ordinary people. Those who think as you do must steel themselves to stand up. There will be no bystanders.

  • Robert Dyson

    I was amazed when I read the Hersh analysis. I never thought Putin would do something so against his interests whatever else my opinion of what he is doing, ditto Germany – so “When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth”. I too think all the time of the young men of both Ukraine and Russia being slaughtered under the flag of freedom; it has echoes of WW1. They should be a core resource for economic development. What also horrifies me is the sham support for Ukraine of other governments, the trickle of weapons as if to carefully keep a fire going. Solidarity, but only up to the border.
    “Don’t question, just follow. If you do question, you are promoting evil”, same for the covid19 narrative.

  • Goose

    At the very least, the politicians in the countries involved and affected, are obligated to investigate and get answers – if only for the citizens they supposedly represent.

    This isn’t some vague conjecture or theorising that can be easily dismissed. The piece is a detailed report with dates and precise operational information. Surely, Norway, with its tradition of democratic transparency : can get some answers?

  • AG

    more on NS will probably come not only by Hersh.

    German media analyst Sabine Schiffer, one of very few who still has her wits together, on Twitter announced a publication on this topic but in a broader sense.

    I wonder what Russian, or Finnish or Mexican investigative people have to say to this?

    Or Kit Klarenberg for that matter, with his GB focus.

    The more the better.

  • Sandy

    Still find it staggering that Norway can export so much natural gas and yet the Scottish fields appear to export absolutely nothing?

    Where does Scotland’s North Sea gas go?

    The Politicians wouldnt be hiding something from us would they?

  • Goose

    Western media have lost the plot…

    Western media are now accusing the UN Secretary General of pushing Kremlin propaganda ‘talking points’ after he used a speech to highlight the dangers of escalation and a ‘wider European war.’ And with it the risks of possible use of nuclear weapons.

    Not a fan of António Guterres, a man obviously chosen for his capacity to ignore western hypocrisy and the selective acknowledgement of human rights abuses – outrage limited to countries that have poor diplomatic relations, and/or geostrategic rivals of the US.

    But what is it coming to when even the Secretary General’s motives are questioned by these large western media outfits? One of the worst is Europe’s largest multimedia publisher, ‘Axel Springer Publishing House.’ Their own history and rise is as sketchy as hell; from its origins in the evil Third Reich promoting ‘master race’ theories, to a partnership with the CIA, promoting US exceptionalism :

    Imagine, had this propagandising, brainwashing western media and today’s internet(social media) existed during in the Cuban Missile Crisis (16–29 October 1962). With a bunch of state-sponsored sock puppets and client journos attacking those warning of the risks of nuclear confrontation. Dismissing those urging caution, as fearmongering mouthpieces of the Kremlin, would the world still exist?

  • Crispa

    I have done a quick survey using a sample of some country’s Top 30 news sites, 10 from each. Unsurprisingly the results are broadly as expected from the theme of this article. All 10 Russian outlets of course run the story but in quite a restrained way and one has a link to Hersh’s article itself.
    The prevailing Russian reaction seems to be more of a resigned “told you so” that one of anger, though they do warn of possible consequences.
    Not a peep in surrounding Georgia – more concerned about the ex president’s welfare, or Ukraine, where I noticed Russian casualties are now at 135 000 dead and a Ukraine victory imminent, which makes one wonder why Z is in such need of his ever bigger begging bowl.
    Norway’s news sites are total trash and seem to appeal only to the brain dead, with just two articles, both more or less copy cat denunciations of the story, repeating the White House line, although there is mention of Tucker Carlson’s Fox News interest in it so there could be some spread into the USA in due course.
    Certainly hardly a dicky bird from the UK.

    • Bayard

      “where I noticed Russian casualties are now at 135 000 dead and a Ukraine victory imminent, which makes one wonder why Z is in such need of his ever bigger begging bowl.”

      This is the perennial bind of those who run organisations that are supported by outside donations, they are torn between the desire to boast about how well they are running it and the need to paint a bleak picture to elicit further donations.

    • Crispa

      I can add Germany to my quick survey. Death of Burt Bacharach lots of mentions. (Z.s travels are of curse headlines everywhere) Two features out of 10, one Spiegel, largely attacking Hersh’s reputation because of his sceptical reporting on Syria, Skripal etc, and another with a pseudo fact checker piece using a so- called expert to deny the article’s credibility. There are are few signs anywhere that it will engender political debate, least of all in the UK.

  • goose

    There is no longer an Overton window of permitted debate. It has narrowed and should be renamed the Overton letterbox.

    One of those small difficult ones right down at the bottom of the door. With a very fierce spring, and snarling dogs guarding it.

    Good analogy.

    How long until the people hounding Galloway, Mick Wallace and co online, turn up at anti-war meetings in dark uniforms armed with baseball bats, while authorities look the other way? It seems like that’s where this is headed.

    Even if they believe every spook narrative 100% and have absolute faith in western politicians to never deliberately tell lies. Surely, if they value free speech, they should allow those they believe to be idiots to speak freely. Why are they so afraid of debate? The hilarious thing is how they claim they’re not allowing ‘fascism a voice,’ through the use of fascist tactics. Irony much?

      • Goose

        It calls into question the use of state sock puppet accounts, volunteers and other such social media activities, if it risks inciting violence.

        Galloway has already had death threats and his show ‘MOATS’ suffered criminal hacking – likely simply a DDoS. Just what sort of monster are those pretending to defend democracy going to unleash? If someone gets seriously physically injured or killed, by some fruitcase inspired by this angry trolling mob online. I’d imagine no one in the UK army will want anything to do with these trolling accounts.

        • Goose

          I’m not even a fan of Galloway’s. It’s hard to know whether he sees himself as some comedy act, or whether he’s serious? Suspect its mostly tongue in cheek?

          His position on Scottish independence is absolutely baffling. His pro-unionism sits uncomfortably alongside his frequent and justified rants, about the ‘big two’ at Westminster. His political party is a joke that’s going nowhere fast.
          If he really despised UK foreign policy as much as he claims he does. He’d be all for independence. And no, Sturgeon and the SNP aren’t an excuse for not being so, as post-independence the SNP, would, in all likelihood, disband.

  • Pnyx

    There is a German news site called Overton that is worth consulting regularly. Some of the texts deserve to be read even by people who do not speak German. For example, with the help of the translation service deepL.

    • AG

      German site?
      I doubt people will do that.
      force of habit I guess.
      Any Frenchies around?
      Or Spaniards.
      So much for “Europe”.
      Though I give it to you, deepl has really improved lately and that should facilitate a better intercultural exchange.

  • Goose

    Seymour Hersh also wrote a piece that covered the atrocious Ghouta attack on 21st August 2013, an attack that crossed Obama’s red line: “The Red Line and the Rat Line.” An attack in which an est. 1,600 poor souls; men, women and children died an horrendous death by suffocation in the pitch dark of night.

    The rockets used – Soviet era – the kind that stick in the ground and belch out their contents were allegedly(?) Libyan – part of Muammar Gaddafi’s supposedly decommissioned arsenal. Supposedly decommissioned by the British and US forces. Since the OPCW holds pictures of said rockets (with codes clearly visible), pictures taken by OPCW inspectors who arrived on the scene, it should be fairly easy to prove Assad’s innocence.

    • Goose

      This could be what triggered all the current animosity between the US and Russia, Biden and Nuland were part of Obama’s administration. Possibly it could even be what dove the US into backing the Maidan coup in late 2013-14.

      US – Russian relations were already rocky, after Russia granted Snowden asylum, but they turned ice-cold after Russia moved to defend Assad and his regime, as the US and UK were (literally) poised (off the Syrian coast) for regime change. The bizarre ‘red line’ breach providing the much needed casus belli.

      The UK parliament voted against action, fearing a direct confrontation with Russia. Meanwhile,Russia confronted Obama at the UN with evidence, allegedly involving Soviet era archives , which proved the rockets weren’t sold to Syria. That evidence was never presented because the US backed down after the UK parliament vote. Robert Fisk wrote and spoke about this. On his death, his reputation was thoroughly trashed in a seemingly orchestrated campaign by the usual state-affiliated journos. This Illustrates why journos need to be independent, avoiding things like the ‘harmless?’ Integrity Initiative and such, lest be used for purposes they don’t fully comprehend.

  • Greg Park

    “particularly interesting are the series of decisions taken to avoid classification of the operation in various ways which would require it to be reported to Congress. In terms of United States history, this ought to be a big deal”

    Title 50 of the US Code also allows the White House and CIA to legally lie about special operations. If the President decides a covert operation is very sensitive he only has to report it to the so-called Gang of Eight, which is the Chairman and ranking minority members of the Congressional Intelligence Committee. The White House can *legally* tell the media and the public a falsehood if the President thinks it’s necessary for US national security. They use this all the time.

    • Goose

      Not hard to understand why senior officials hate and fear Julian Assange, is it.

      They’re projecting their own ‘suppressed’ guilty feelings and moral cowardice, on to someone else.

  • Greg Park

    “It is a clear indicator of the disappearance of freedom from our so-called western democracies that Sy Hersh, arguably the greatest living journalist, cannot get this monumental revelation on the front of the Washington Post or New York Times”

    Even though the White House spent all day issuing frantic denials there is still not a trace of Hersh’s revelation on the Guardian website. That’s the fearless, adversarial Guardian as it promotes itself in appeals for reader donations.

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