Skripal Poisoning – The UK's Case for Russian Involvement

Earlier this week, over 130 Russian diplomats were expelled from over 20 separate countries. It was billed as a “massive show of unity”, and claimed as further evidence of Russian guilt. The familiar chorus repeated, that there is “no plausible alternative explanation”.
So what was the strong evidence that the UK government shared with their allies? It must have been compelling in order to move the EU, US et al. to make moves of solidarity.
It’s a slide show.
Now, that might not sound like much. But a slide show can be very persuasive. It could have witness testimony, scientific test results, photographic evidence. It could explain motive, provide alibis for other suspects. It could be hundreds of pages of hard evidence laying out a perfect, bulletproof case.
It could be all of those things…but in this case it’s not.
We have it here, in PDF form. And here is another version. It’s five slides. That’s all, just five.

Slide 1: Timeline
An incredibly rough timeline of all the important events, skipping over the crime in one bullet point and then telling us in more detail what May said about it and when. Also there’s a map. A good start.
Slide 2: Accusations
Un-sourced accusations of Russian disinformation, a proven lie about who has access to Novichok-class agents and a scary red-tinted picture of men in bio-hazard suits.
Slide 3: What Novichok Does
A nice diagram of the human body, an incredibly basic summary of what nerve toxins do, and then the number of people who thought they might have been poisoned but weren’t.
Slide 4: Other Stuff We Blame Russia For
A long list of things Russia either might not have done, or provably did not do.
Slide 5: What We’re Going to Do About it!
This actual official PDF from the UK government has a picture of money hanging from a washing line to depict “dirty money”. What makes it even funnier is knowing some intern in the basement was given the task of doing an image search for “money laundering”, and this is all he could find. That coupled with the “UK Border” sign, because they mention the border make this slide my favourite. Also “new legislation”, when and what it’s about don’t matter apparently.

This is it. This is the totality of Her Majesty’s case for Russian guilt in the poisoning of Sergei Skripal.
How compelling do you find it?
Would you accept this as proof of guilt?
Is it advisable to base important foreign policy decisions on this document?


Kit Knightly is co-editor of OffGuardian. The Guardian banned him from commenting. Twice. He used to write for fun, but now he's forced to out of a near-permanent sense of outrage.

Filed under: empire watch, latest, Skripal case

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Kit Knightly is co-editor of OffGuardian. The Guardian banned him from commenting. Twice. He used to write for fun, but now he's forced to out of a near-permanent sense of outrage.

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MoS
Reader
MoS

This is the government’s entire case and you know that how? Has the British government, MI5 and MI6 invited you to peruse their evidence, their studies and analysis? I’m guessing they haven’t and you’ve simply latched on, supposedly, to five slides that you posit as “the totally (sic) of Her Majesty’s case.” I’ll tell you who hasn’t made out a persuasive much less convincing case – you.

JudyJ
Reader

The point is that the British Govt et al haven’t invited the EU, EU Member States, the US or NATO to ‘peruse their evidence’. And how do I know that? Because the EU, EU Member States, the US and NATO have said so. They’ve all with one voice used the expression “We trust the UK”. Are those the words you would use if you’d seen hard evidence? I saw an interview with a Latvian rep after the UK presented the case to the EU and he said that no doubt the UK had evidence but “presumably” for security reasons they… Read more »

Pam Ryan
Reader
Pam Ryan

Unless you are trolling, I worry for you.

vierotchka
Reader
Mikalina
Reader
Mikalina

I LOVE your visual comments.

vierotchka
Reader

comment image

vierotchka
Reader

“British scientists cannot prove that the novichok nerve agent used to poison ex-spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter was made in Russia, the military laboratory which tested it has said.
“Experts at the Porton Down research laboratory were unable to establish “the precise source” of the chemical weapon, the chief executive of the Ministry of Defence facility told Sky News. He added the government had used “a number of other sources to piece together” the conclusion that the Kremlin was responsible.”
Read more at link:
https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/salisbury-poisoning-russia-novichok-nerve-agent-porton-down-proof-evidence-mod-latest-a8286761.html

Runner77
Reader
Runner77

It’s interesting that The Independent is now censoring comments in the same way the Grauniad does. Early this morning (I live in mainland Europe) the relatively few comments under the article headlined “Russia warns travellers to UK face ‘provocations’ including having ‘objects placed in their luggage” almost unanimously questioned the UK government line, and this overwhelming tendency continued for around 2 hours. Then around 10:30 BST someone called Eurominion started added numerous comments supportive of the UK government, and at the same time I and at least three other commentators further commented that our comments had either disappeared or were… Read more »

A. J. B
Reader
A. J. B

Comments disappear often on certain topics, but I think a swarm of trolls
act in force to flag comments they don’t like. Spent a day on an Israel
topic and not only mine, but every single comment on one side of the argument vanished.
It was very clear that this was really abnormal, everyone agreeing on a contentious subject.
It would be interesting to know who these trolls are,

Hertog Jan
Reader
Hertog Jan

Demonizing Russia in order to isolate it while simultaneously demonstrating again the servility of the presstitutes and the stupidity of a significant part of the public.

Susan Cora
Reader
Susan Cora

‘presstitutes’ – excellently apt!

TJ
Reader
TJ

Now we have an interesting Clinton-Novichok connection –
“on Apr 3 2009, Hillary Clinton, as SecyState, sent instructions to US chemical weapon negotiators to “avoid any substantive discussion of the Mirazayanov book” on novichoks and “discourage substantive discussions” if issue arose. Why?”
From https://twitter.com/ClimateAudit/status/979768829969485824?s=09comment imagecomment image
https://search.wikileaks.org/plusd/cables/09STATE32931_a.html

BigB
Reader

There is more than a passing Clinton connection: unfortunately I don’t have time to detail it. Christopher Steele is the obvious link. Far from a passive mercenary purveyor of lies: his role seems much more active to me …perhaps pivotal. But as this will never be investigated: that must remain conjecture. The other link goes back to 2009/10 when HRC opposed the Magnitsky Act. In fact: WJC may have been paid to oppose it. Then she switched to back the Global Magnitsky Act of 2016. It would be interesting to discover what inducement, financial or other, led to the turnaround… Read more »

vexarb
Reader

Ziad Fadel, editor of SyrPer, comments that failure of the Skripal false flag has unnerved the West’s territorial designs on Syria — an unmitigated disaster for NATZO. Clip: “In any case, a French, an American, a British and a Zionist special operations unit has been captured in a tunnel inside ‘Ayn Turma. This is quite an embarrassment for the West seeing that they were there among fanatical jihadists giving them advice and, even, directing defensive operations. They were detected when a British-accented agent was intercepted giving instructions to an inarticulate Faylaq thug which resulted in a triangulation of the transmission… Read more »

Admin
Reader

Do you have a link?

vexarb
Reader

https://www.syrianperspective.com
Re SyrPer’s repeated allegation that there are UK sevicemen working with ISIS, and some have been captured, the Independent has now come up with its belated report of the first UK serviceman killed while allegedly “fighting against ISIS”. A brief glance BTL tells me the readership isn’t buying that story. And unlike the usual False Flag Launch events, no horde of Langley Bots spring up to cheer the Official Line. Her Majesty’s Government was caught napping over this news item. There may be more to come.

Admin
Reader

Thanks Vexarb

eddie
Reader
eddie

Posting our knowledge of obvious false-flag scenarios is not as futile as it once was.
Didn’t the Guardian recently revert to plan B: the Skripal poisoning was a result of their toxic rubber bath-tub ducks?

Harry Law
Reader
Harry Law

Here is part of the Consular Convention 1965 between the UK of GB and NI and the USSR. Article 30 A Consular Officer shall be entitled, within the Consular district. a/ to protect the rights and to promote the interests of the sending state and of its Nationals; The term ‘National’ shall for the purposes of this part, mean any person whom the sending state recognises as its national, including, where the context so permits any judicial entity. Article 36. 1 [a] A consular officer shall be entitled within the consular district to communicate with, interview and advise a national… Read more »

Kathy
Reader
Kathy

It shows the ease in which the state can control the masses with the narrative. Set the scene and lay the blame. No evidence required. You can now spirit people off the streets deprive access to them All in plain sight. and immediately blame another party. Produce no evidence and get all your mates to gang up on the accused just on your say so. Meanwhile the population are bombarded with repetition and conditioned to not query the story. After all they are on the good side. All the while the puppet kings and queens and the master puppeteer inflicts… Read more »

g wiltek
Reader
g wiltek

Except more and more people are asking questions. Even the man on the street in the UK have grave doubts.
We have heard so many lies and seen so many questionable tactics we have stopped believing.

Ultraviolet
Reader
Ultraviolet

The Graun opened comments on a Salisbury story today. And closed them pretty quick!
https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2018/apr/01/salisbury-easter-nerve-agent-russians-skripal-tourists-frightened
Apart from a couple of trolls accusing anyone of questioning the official narrative of being Putin shills, there was pretty much consensus that the story is rubbish. It’s the same picture when the Independent opens comments on its stories. Even more remarkable, Mail commenters appear to feel the same.
The public is not buying it.

Harry Law
Reader
Harry Law

Alexander Mercouris has a good article in the Duran ‘Skripal case becomes even weirder’ He say’s non of the participants in the High Court case including the Litigating friend of the Skripals mention the 1965 Bilateral Agreement [now part of UK Law] between the UK and the USSR [Russia the successor state]. Mercouris argues that while he is no specialist on this aspect of the law, both appear to require the UK to grant consular access to the Skripals for the Russian Authorities. “That looks to me not just a violation of due process, but based on the texts of… Read more »

0use4msm
Reader
0use4msm

The Skripal case is already starting to fade out from the mainstream media news cycle, apart from a few commentaries on Russia’s evil retaliation for expelling diplomats. The Russian elections have passed, Putin smeared, trial by media job done: the Skripal case will soon disappear down the memory hole, rather like the 2001 anthrax letters scare, to make place for the next hyped witch hunt.

MichaelK
Reader
MichaelK

The government information presented by the UK is… very British. In the sense that it buries a real lack of solid real information, under a great edifice of style. I can’t see this stuff convincing many people in Europe, especially Germans who think differently and don’t react well to the British obsession with the surface image rather than the actual content.

intergenerationaltrauma
Reader

With the pope apparently sowing doubt about the very “existence of hell” (see link below) one cannot help but wonder where Allen Dulles and many decades worth of long dead CIA officials are holding their meetings these days? One might also wonder how the Teresa May’s and John Bolton’s of the world are supposed to provide a post-humous forwarding address for her mail? And of course one must ask – does this revelation have any significance to answering the age old question of – “how many neoliberal, neocon, psychopathic war-mongers can dance on the head of a ‘Peacekeeper’ missile?” Inquiring… Read more »

vexarb
Reader

@IGTrauma. When it comes to Theology I would trust Dante and Aquinas against most Popes. And when it comes to burning all the dead wood in the Universe, consigning Dives to Hell, and setting up an income bar to Heaven, I would back Rabbi Yeshuah of Nazareth against all Later Authorities.

Ross Hendry
Reader

It’s patently obvious to many of us that “the Salisbury Job” was a CIA/MI6/Mossad false flag but I haven’t seen any discussion of how much May or her cabinet might be aware of this. Are they consciously taking part in the theatre of the absurd, all playing their roles, to blame Russia – or do they really believe, via ignorance and dodgy dossiers from MI6, that it was a real attack by the Russians? Neither scenario is very satisfactory but the former is more frightening

Daniel Danon
Reader
Daniel Danon

Did W know Iraq’s WMD were a myth? I guess we will never know. My best bet is that no, neither W nor May knew that they were mere puppets but both saw the interest of reacting emotionally instead of asking questions and acting rationally. Then forced the other to join by the usual «are you with me ir against me? ».

vierotchka
Reader

I remember reading that, a few months before the Iraq invasion began in 2003, in 1995, Saddam Hussein’s two sons-in-law fled Iraq and went to Jordan – General Hussein Kamel and his brother Saddam Kamel Hassan Majid. General Hussein Kamel had been responsible for Iraq’s WMDs. When he fled, he brought two crates of documents with him in which it was confirmed that he had had all the WMDs destroyed. See:
Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction were almost certainly destroyed following the Gulf War
13 March 2003
http://johnpilger.com/articles/iraq-s-weapons-of-mass-destruction-were-almost-certainly-destroyed-following-the-gulf-war

vexarb
Reader

@Daniel. UN Weapons Inspector Scott Ritter said they were a myth. Scott Ritter was fired; from then on, no one who voted for that Unjust War — as it was called by Leaders of World Christianity — could plead ignorance.

Paul
Reader
Paul

I would imagine May does know it’s a stunt. After 8 years at the Home Office she is Mrs Security. She was very quick off the blocks in this case, very much as if it was scripted. If the double spy was thinking of going for a 3rd turnaround, as has been suggested, then he might have been expendable, even more so if he did ‘help’ Christopher Steele. Relatively little harm was done; it wasn’t like releasing Sarin into the city centre; diplomats were the main casualties. But the success of the operation is seen by the way the whole… Read more »

Susan Cora
Reader
Susan Cora

Fully agree with your analysis.
There seems to be no limit to the reprobrate machinations that May and this government will partake in for power.

mohandeer
Reader

Reblogged this on Worldtruth and commented:
It’s not just that the MSM have such contempt for the intelligence of their readers, it’s that they reflect the utter contempt the neoliberal government and politicians have for “thick as slurry” plebs. A case without any foundation in proof, whatsoever, is being claimed as “proof”.
WTF????? They really thaink we are that dumbed down?

milosevic
Reader
milosevic

the MSM have such contempt for the intelligence of their readers alternative hypothesis: The people who run the MSM are actually stupid enough to believe their own lies, and can’t see why anybody else wouldn’t, either. Whether their idiocy derives from natural talent, or required years of arduous training to achieve, is a matter for further investigation. A worthwhile experiment is to point out the obvious false-flag nature of the 9/11 event, to some right-thinking, middle-class person who regards the MSM as serious, responsible, and credible. Observe their emotional/intellectual reaction, and the sort of arguments they deploy in defence of… Read more »

BigB
Reader

Not long now: they will be coming …citing the proclamations of the Fusion Doctrine. First: there was the “Great Firewall of China”; designed not to contain …but to keep Westernising influence out. Now, it is as if a digital Iron Curtain has descended across Europe …not to keep the Soviets, sorry, the Eurasian super-state out: but to keep us contained within the Ingsoc ideo-cultural idiotocracy. They want full-spectrum dominance over all information flows so as to dictate our very consciousness to us. Soon enough, we will all be shown identically blank post-individuality hive-mind Excel presentations by our assigned re-educator …and… Read more »

mog
Reader
mog

‘The ideal subject of totalitarian rule is not the convinced Nazi, or the dedicated Communist, but people for whom the distinction between fact and fiction, true and false, no longer exists’
Hannah Arendt (‘The Origins of Totalitarianism’)
[h/t Bill Owen]
Not so long, as you say.
How many Labourites will even mention the massacre of Palestinians unfolding on the Gaza border I wonder?

MICHAEL LEIGH
Reader
MICHAEL LEIGH

If I may, try to answer your MOG question. first I would like to cite the number of the British Parliamentry people representatives who are members of the non-parliamentry Hebrew cause ? Can you tell us ? For example how many constituency people’s parliamentry representatives have consulted their own electorate to give support, to the Hebrew State of Israel illegally occupying the Palestine territory and in breach of inumerable UNO prescriptions against the global and UNO accords ? How many peoples representatives have actuality consulted their electorate ? Perhaps in the interests of the factuality we should be told about… Read more »

BigB
Reader

None: but John Mann or Ian Austin et al will still have a post-truth platform to blame the Palestinians for their own persecution no doubt?

mog
Reader
mog

Ross Hendry
Reader

I’m with you there. Didn’t these people read Orwell? If they did they must have thought it was describing a utopia they need to work towards.

milosevic
Reader
milosevic

Conversely, Orwell was describing these people and their imagined utopia, which has only metastasized since 1948/1984.

vexarb
Reader

From the Indie. I read it to gauge public opinion in its relatively uncensored C,mments BTL. Count the Likes vs Dislikes in this clip. 8 Dislikes for the one who preferred Reuters: peopleb4profit 14 hours ago With acknowledgment to Offguardian “Let the jury consider the verdict” the King said. “No, No” said the Queen: “sentence first, verdict afterwards”. “Stuff and nonsense” said Alice.” +11 Symbold 13 hours ago “Off Guardian” Has been thoroughly discredited as a prolific source of fake news, conspiracy theories and pro-Putin propaganda. https://wikispooks.com/wiki/OffGuardian Quote: “In November 2016, the site was listed by PropOrNot as one of… Read more »

vierotchka
Reader

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Harry Law
Reader
Harry Law

‘Highly likely’ has morphed into ‘ We are ‘without doubt’ [Paragraph 5, slide 2] that Russia is responsible. If you say that something is true without doubt or without a doubt, you are emphasizing that it is definitely true. [Collins English Dictionary]:
“This is stronger than the ‘Beyond a reasonable doubt’ The standard that must be met by the prosecution’s evidence in a criminal prosecution: that no other logical explanation can be derived from the facts except that the defendant committed the crime, thereby overcoming the presumption that a person is innocent until proven guilty” [The Free Dictionary].

rtj1211
Reader
rtj1211

I am sure both May and Johnson are aware that a defendant is tried under the presumption of inncence until proven otherwise and, only after guilt has been asserted are previous crimes and misdemeanours of the convicted party presented to be considered when passing sentence. Here May and Johnson pronounced guilt before collecting evidence; directed the world to convict before Counsel for the Defence being allowed to present evidence or to cross examine prosecution witnesses; and ignored the views of the General Public jury before passing sentence. I do hope if they are ever arraigned in a court of law… Read more »

Alan
Reader
Alan

I understand the establishment and media believe Britons have the mental capacity of an average ten year old, I didn’t realise this extended worldwide.