The Empire Strikes Backwards

by John Helmer, Moscow, April 5, 2018

Empires are just like everything else going down the toilet. Bits always stick on the porcelain which require more flushing.  Embarrassing bits.
Now in its fifth week since the poisoning of Sergei and Yulia Skripal in Salisbury on March 4, the bits that cannot be flushed away are producing an odour whose obviousness is embarrassing for  Salisbury Hospital and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW).
The hospital is treating the Skripals for their medical welfare and is required by hospital policy and  UK law to be accountable to their next of kin. Their rights of access to and from the hospital are also required by  European Human Rights Convention.  The evidence now accumulating is that the hospital is detaining and isolating the Skripals against their will, preventing contact with their family. Requested to explain this and identify her legal authority, the response of the hospital’s chief executive, Cara Charles-Barks, is to stonewall.
The OPCW, comprising 192 states which have signed, ratified and enacted the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC),  is governed by a 41-member Executive Council, and administered by a Secretary-General and a staff based in The Hague. They represent the management arm of the Convention to ensure that everyone follows its provisions.  But in acting on the Skripal case, the OPCW is voting in secret and  violating the articles of the Convention itself. The OPCW’s spokesman, an American named Deepti Choubey, refuses to reply to questions claiming the right of confidentiality according to the Convention and the OPCW’s policy. When asked to identify which provisions of the Convention apply, and what is the text of the OPCW policy on confidentiality, Choubey’s response is to stonewall. 
Yulia Skripal can hear and speak, according to the British state broadcaster BBC, but she is incommunicado.  In Moscow, her cousin Victoria Skripal has told the Russian press she has repeatedly tried to telephone her cousin on the latter’s Russian mobile telephone, but that this device has been disconnected.
That was until Thursday morning, when Yulia Skripal reportedly initiated this call from the hospital to her cousin in Moscow. She was using what she called a “temporary telephone”.
Viktoria and Yulia
Listen to the Russian tape-recording of the call here.
The BBC has broadcast an edited and excerpted version of this conversation,  with English commentary over the Russian voices. Its translation of the Russian into English can be read here.
BBC on Yulia's phone conversation
Source: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-43652574
Victoria told Yulia: “Look, if tomorrow I get a [British] visa, I’ll come to you on Monday.” Yulia replied: “Vika, no-one will give you a visa.”
Amplifying on this, Yulia said: “that’s the situation at the moment, we’ll sort it out later… Later, we’ll get it sorted later, everything’s fine, we’ll see later… Everything’s fine, but we’ll see how it goes, we’ll decide later. You know what the situation is here. Everything is fine, everything is solvable, everyone is recovering and is alive.”
On Thursday, soon after the Moscow telephone-call was broadcast, the Metropolitan Police in London issued a statement. Its veracity cannot be authenticated, and its substance is contradictory. On the one hand, the release claims to have been “issued on behalf of Yulia Skripal”. On the other hand, the statement quotes Yulia Skripal directly. Why her words could not have been given to the press and public directly is not explained.
MET statement on Yulia
Source: http://news.met.police.uk/news/statement-issued-on-behalf-of-yulia-skripal-301372
Because neither the Russian telephone recording nor the British police statement can be authenticated and verified independently, the only thing certain is that Yulia Skripal is not permitted by the hospital to speak directly in public. The implication is that she will also not be permitted to meet her cousin, and that, accordingly, it is unlikely the UK Government will allow Victoria Spripal to enter the UK.  The British state broadcaster is reporting the contrary: “the Foreign Office said its Moscow embassy was expected to give Victoria a [British] visa, possibly on Thursday, and that she would be given full [Russian] consular help in the UK.”
The Russian Embassy in London has issued several statements that it has been unlawfully denied consular access to the Skripals at Salisbury Hospital. The British law requiring their contact and communication is in the enactment in November 1968 of the UK-USSR Treaty Number 92. Article 36 is explicit on the British law applying to Russian government officials in the Skripal case.
ARTICLE 36
Source: http://treaties.fco.gov.uk/docs/pdf/1968/TS0092.pdf
The preceding Article 35 of the treaty is also explicit in allowing the Russian Embassy to identify Victoria Skripal,  or a British lawyer,  or both together, to represent the Skripals in hospital, and to meet with them without obstacle or hindrance.
article 35
Source: http://treaties.fco.gov.uk/docs/pdf/1968/TS0092.pdf
To date, Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko in London and the Foreign Ministry in Moscow have not attempted to exercise this entitlement. If the UK Embassy in Moscow refuses Victoria an entry visa, that action will be open for the Russians to engage a Queen’s Counsel to challenge under Article 35 in the High Court.
Another British law applies, too. Article 5 of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms — incorporated in the UK Human Rights Act of 1998 — orders that “no one shall be deprived of his liberty” except for six specified circumstances. These cover arrest on suspicion of crime, conviction by a court, or “for the prevention of the spreading of infectious diseases.” In all of these conditions, Section 4 of the Article allows access to the court for the person detained,  or their legal representative:
Section 4
Source: https://www.echr.coe.int/Documents/Collection_Convention_1950_ENG.pdf
This is also the habeas corpus provision in long standing British law, explained here.
The Salisbury Hospital’s chief executive Cara Charles-Barks was asked on March 31 to clarify the circumstances of the Skripals’ condition in the hospital:
Questions for Cara
Charles-Barks replied on April 4 through a spokesman. “In answer to questions 1,2 and 4 the [Salisbury Hospital]  Trust is not commenting beyond what it has already said in public due to patient confidentiality. In response to question 3 it is the Trust’s standard procedure that patients who have capacity are asked whether they would like to receive visits and if so from whom.  No-one is permitted access to patients without their consent.  Due to patient confidentiality, the Trust is not able to enter into further correspondence about the clinical care of patients.”
This is a shutdown by the hospital of all communications regarding Yulia Skripal on the ground that she has given her consent, and that said, the hospital has the authority to safeguard her privacy.  Neither the consent nor the privacy can be independently verified. Both claims by Charles-Barks are subject to UK law and the European human rights convention so that verification can be tested by sworn evidence in court.
If on the day after Charles-Barks’ email, Yulia Skripal made her telephone-call to Victoria Skripal on a telephone not her own, she was disputing her consent, and exercising her right to speak to her next of kin.  Alternatively, as the BBC and London newspapers have intimated, the call was fabricated and she cannot communicate with her cousin because she doesn’t want to. Both possibilities lead to the same place – a test in the High Court in London of the evidence of the Skripals’ condition.
The police statement “on her behalf” implies what the hospital already claimed by putting the words in Yulia’s mouth on Metropolitan Police letterhead:  “I hope that you’ll respect my privacy and that of my family during the period of my convalescence.” Since Victoria Skripal is indisputably “family”,  and the telephone-call is now public, the standing of Victoria Skripal to speak on behalf her cousin and uncle, and to challenge the legality of the Skripals’ detention  is also indisputable.
The embarrassingly obvious speck on the porcelain —  Salisbury Hospital is in violation of British and international law. If this isn’t taken to court, it stinks.
There is also the odour from the OPCW headquarters at The Hague. On Thursday, at Russia’s  request, the forty-one members of the Executive Council were called into a special session to discuss the Skripal case, and to consider a Russian proposal to implement Articles  VIII and IX  of the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC).  Read that here.
Article VIII sets down the rules, procedures and organizations for implementing the requirements of the Convention with which everybody, Russia and the UK included, agrees to comply. Article VIII requires the Executive Council to vote on “decisions on matters of substance by a two-thirds majority of all its members.” That’s 27 votes.  Nowhere in this article is there a proviso for the Executive Council to keep its voted decisions secret.
Secrecy does not appear in the Convention at all except for agreements which members of the technical staff of the organization are required to sign covering their work and their access to classified information of member states.
Article IX sets out the requirement that when one member state suspects it has been attacked by a chemical weapon, possibly from or by another member state, it shall (that means must)  cooperate with the suspected party.

Article IX
Source: https://www.opcw.org/fileadmin/OPCW/CWC/CWC_en.pdf

The Russian proposal was for the Executive Council to enforce these provisions because the UK had been refusing to do so. The OPCW Secretary-General, Ahmet Üzümcü  (right with US Secretary of State John Kerry), opened the session with a statement published on the OPCW website.  Üzümcü, a Turk, was first appointed to the OPCW post in 2009. Before that, he served the Turkish Government in a variety of posts, including its embassy to NATO. Üzümcü has also been a member of the NATO staff in charge of expanding NATO military operations to the Russian frontier, as well as NATO operations in Ukraine and Syria.  For a time also, he was the Turkish consul in the Syrian city of Aleppo.
On Thursday Üzümcü said the UK had invoked Article VIII to start an OPCW investigation of the Salisbury incident. He then described the OPCW inspection of several Salisbury sites and blood sampling of the Skripals in hospital. He also explained how the evidence was “split”, so that the UK received a part, and the OPCW kept the remainder.
“These samples,” Üzümcü claimed, “were sealed and brought to the OPCW laboratory on 23 March 2018. Samples were split in the presence of an expert from the United Kingdom, and the United Kingdom was provided with one split of each sample. The environmental samples were then delivered to two designated laboratories, and the biomedical samples were delivered to another two designated laboratories. The collection, splitting, and transportation of the samples were carried out in-line with the relevant procedures of the Secretariat. The chain-of-custody was fully maintained.”
Üzümcü’s use of the legal term “chain-of-custody” is odd because OPCW is not a judicial body; he is a Turkish national under Turkish law, and the unidentified OPCW personnel responsible for the “splitting” were supervised by the British.  No independent verification of the chain of custody or protection against tampering was arranged or published. London lawyers say such evidence would be inadmissible in a British court. Üzümcü’s chain-of-custody claim, comments one, “has no legal merit but it does tell you which side he’s on.”
Although Russia has been officially accused by the British Government of the chemical attack in Salisbury, Üzümcü didn’t mention it. He also did not say that any of the evidence the OPCW has gathered and is analysing will be made available to the Russian Government.
“The results of the sample analyses are expected to be received by early next week,” Üzümcü told the Council. “Once the results of the analyses of the samples are received [by the Director-General], the Secretariat will produce a report on the basis of these results and will transmit a copy of this report to the United Kingdom. The report will reflect the findings of the designated laboratories. Access of other States Parties to the report will be subject to the agreement of the United Kingdom pursuant to the Confidentiality Annex of the Convention, the OPCW Policy on Confidentiality, and the consistent practice in relation to other technical assistance visits.”
It is now public information that the head of the UK Government’s Defence Science and Technology Laboratory,  Gary Aitkenhead,   refuses to identify a Russian source from the samples of the poison which the Porton Down institution received from government agents gathering them from the Skripals and the Salisbury police officer who was contaminated at the Skripal home; the Skripals’ BMW car; and from sites around the city where the Skripals stopped before their medical collapse. “We were able to identify it as novichok, to identify that it was military-grade nerve agent,” Aitkenhead said.  “We have not identified the precise source, but we have provided the scientific info to the government who have then used a number of other sources.”
Screenshot-03-04-2018-093929-768x433.png
Source: https://news.sky.com/story/porton-down-experts-unable-to-identify-precise-source-of-novichok-that-poisoned-spy-11315387
“It is our job,” Aitklenhead added, “to provide the scientific evidence of what this particular nerve agent is, we identified that it is from this particular family and that it is a military grade, but it is not our job to say where it was manufactured.”
A study by British academics of this class of nerve agents reported on April 1 that  identifying a state origin from the samples examined by Porton Down, or by the OPCW, will be impossible because a large number of states have bench samples in their laboratories or  are known to have synthesized them; and because the molecular structure of the agents breaks down swiftly in the blood and in the environment. “Blood tests for nerve agent detect only what is left of the molecule after it has bound to the receptor. The ‘leaving group’ (the rest of the molecule) cannot be identified. For sarin (and presumably for A-234 [Novichok]) the leaving group is a fluorine atom, and for VX the leaving group is a thiol.”
Üzümcü’s statement at yesterday’s session of the OPCW rules out the possibility that the OPCW report will publicly identify the molecular traces in the sampling which has been conducted, and that no source of manufacture will be identifiable.
Since Üzümcü told the Executive Council he was following the UK request to keep the OPCW evidence and its reported conclusion from public release or from Russian examination, the Russians, joined by Iran and China, called for a vote of the Council to require the UK to comply with the Article IX “cooperation” rule. Ahead of the vote, the OPCW published official member statements from several countries.
Fourteen of the members, including Russia (China did not join), declared: “We consider it necessary to ensure that this problem is solved exclusively within the international legal framework using the full potential of the CWC. The stake holders among States Parties of the OPCW should, in close cooperation with each other through constructive dialogue, find a solution for the current dangerous situation and prevent its further escalation.”
A separate Iranian statement explicitly invoked Article IX:
Iranian statement Скриншот-04-04-2018-102015-1-768x263
Source
A statement from the European Union expressed “full confidence in the UK investigation and… UK’s collaboration with the OPCW Technical Secretariat, in full compliance with the Convention.”
The US statement avoided the issue tabled for the vote,  announcing instead the US conclusion of the investigation:
US statement Скриншот-04-04-2018-102440-1-768x323.png
Source: https://www.opcw.org/fileadmin/OPCW/EC/M-57/en/ecm57nat01_e___1_.pdf
The outcome of the session has not been officially reported by the OPCW.  Press reports indicate that of the 41 members of the council, 3 were absent; 15 voted against the Russian proposal; 6 voted in favour; 17 abstained. According to the Russian representative, Alexander Shulgin, “unfortunately, we didn’t manage to get the qualitied majority of two-thirds of the votes, which would mean adoption of our resolution.  The Britons, Americans and – following their example – EU and NATO member-states and some the Asian allies of the US voted against it. It’s noteworthy, however, that 23 countries refused to associate themselves with that viewpoint. They either voted for our proposal or refrained from voting. And this is a half of all the members of the Executive Council.”
The Foreign Office in London issued this tweet:
Foreign Office tweet Скриншот-28-03-2018-101709
Source: https://twitter.com/foreignoffice
To clarify what had transpired at the OPCW council session, Üzümcü’s spokesman was asked to identify the member states which had absented themselves from Thursday’s session; and to name the countries voting against the resolution; for the resolution; and those abstaining.  She was also asked to clarify the claim by Üzümcü, reported to the Council,    that denial of access of state members of OPCW to the Skripal investigation report is founded on the Confidentiality Annex of the Convention. To which specific section or sub-section of the Annex was the Director-General referring? the spokesman was asked.
The spokesman of the OPCW is Deepti Choubey, an American who has worked for a series of the US funded and US directed think-tanks, according to this resume.  Her media credits, she reports, include “CNN, MSNBC, Russia Today TV, Voice of America, numerous foreign outlets, National Public Radio, BBC, ABC Radio and CBS Radio…the Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, and U.S. News and World Report.”  The British Government was one of the principal financiers of the think-tank on chemical and nuclear warfare where Choubey worked between 2010 and 2012. For more on Choubey’s background, read this. For her paymasters, click.
Deepti Choubey
Choubey issued a tweet to report Thursday’s session;  this republished the official statements already posted on the OPCW website:
Chouby Скриншот-29-03-2018-175754-768x137
Source: https://twitter.com/realdeeptic?lang=en
She refused to respond to a telephone call or to emails setting out the questions. Instead, an unsigned email was despatched to say:
OPCW Скриншот-29-03-2018-180604.png
Choubey refuses to clarify what provision of the Chemical Weapons Convention makes the secrecy of Council votes lawful. The Confidentiality Annex of the Convention also fails to provide for the secrecy of Council votes.  The annex covers mostly the technical and investigative work of the OPCW.  It is silent regarding cases where one OPCW member states accuses another member state of a chemical weapons attack on its territory and citizens, as the UK, the US and the European Union are  charging Russia.
Read the Confidentiality Annex carefully here.
Confidentiality Annex.png
In short, the UK can order Director-General Üzümcü, a NATO ally, to accept its “designation” for information it wants to keep secret from Russia, including the names of the member states which refused to agree with the UK in the vote to implement Article IX of the Convention, and make the OPCW investigation of the British allegations open, transparent, accountable to the Convention itself.
This is what Üzümcü did. When he told the Council in his published statement “the United Kingdom has expressed its wish to be as transparent as possible”, he was faking. By telling Choubey to stonewall, he turned the Convention into a deadletter.
As bits on the porcelain go, this one is too big to flush away.

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vierotchka
Reader

Sorry, I couldn’t resist:comment image

Hugh O'Neill
Reader
Hugh O'Neill

But who is the guy we can see in the mirror taking the photo?

vierotchka
Reader

It could simply be some customer in the pub to whom they asked to take a picture of them.

estaugh
Reader
estaugh

Yes, but exactly which customer? This is a case where treason lurks, We must ‘fear for our lives’. You would think this detail would be chased up by an official investigation. He might have spoken with them, ‘tra,la,la, can I take your photo please’? It is a very distinct image. Why has he not presented himself to the authorities, that would seem a normal thing to do. ‘Specially as PTB is waving an invitation for WWIII.

vierotchka
Reader

Which customer? Most likely one who was sitting or standing closest to them.
That photo could have been taken during a previous visite by Yulia to her father, or even when she was still living with him in London some years ago.
I have lost count of how many times over the years total strangers have asked me if I could take a picture of them, handing me their camera.

Estaugh
Reader
Estaugh

Pour l’eliminer de l’inquete. Sa sera dans le norms du pratique policiere

vierotchka
Reader

Hmmmm… you should have written “Pour l’éliminer de l’enquête. Ça sera dans les normes des pratiques policières.”
😀

Estaugh
Reader
Estaugh

Oui, Moi j’habite longtemps en territoire francophone. Donc, pas autant anglo-saxon, plutot franglo-boxon. Donc, un francais rouille et ecrit avec un clavier qwerty. Mais bon! J’aime la langue, alors je ne vais pas me gener pour le practiquer, meme imparfaitment. Mercx pour m’avoir corrige

vierotchka
Reader

Mon clavier est qwertz, et comme je vis en Suisse Romande et y ai acheté mon ordinateur portable, il a tous les accents nécessaires. 🙂

Paul
Reader
Paul

I thought he was one of the waiters.

Hugh O’Neill
Reader
Hugh O’Neill

What is the provenance of the photo? Is it from the Skripal camera? Is there a date time stamp? Are they drinking full strength scrumpy?

vierotchka
Reader

Is foll-strength scrumpy available in London pubs? I thought the only place one could get it is in farms located in Dorset, Devon, Somerset, Wiltshire, Gloucestershire and Herefordshire. 😀

vierotchka
Reader

Sorry about “visite”, as I speak as good a French than I speak English and live in a part of my country which is French-speaking, occasionally my French intrudes on my English.

jazza
Reader
jazza

Why did it take the OPCW nearly three weeks to obtain samples from Salisbury? Why was it not asked immediately to provide its input? How valuable now are the results of their investigation anyway?

JudyJ
Reader

You ask good questions. Certainly with regard to the delay, the UK ‘obfuscated’ (to borrow their own accusation levelled at Russia!) and did their damnedest to avoid bringing the OPCW in at all, or at least to delay their involvement. It seemed suspicious at the time, even moreso because they weren’t prepared to co-operate with Russia. Did they really think they could unilaterally get away with being judge and jury on their own prosecution case? Presumably they did. I suspect it was only pressure from allied States to recognise that the OPCW should be involved, if only for presentational purposes,… Read more »

JudyJ
Reader

@jazza – Further to my comments above, maybe what convinced the UK to call in the OPCW was indeed because they were advised that by doing so they would have control of the final report, rather than risk the Russians initiating OPCW involvement. Now that would not surprise me in the slightest.

Jo
Reader
Jo

Back to the situation…who did Boris call or speak to at PD….has Juliya tried to call her mother and vica versa….absolutely nothing about the boyfriend could he part of a pkot to convince Juliya that it must be the Russians…..surely that is the desparate focus now to contnue the mum…the victims “must” say it was the Russians nay if not Putin himself?

vierotchka
Reader

Her mother died of cancer some years ago, in the UK.

MichaelK
Reader
MichaelK

The Guardian… ‘exclusively’ sinks even lower into the toxic cesspit. They are not stepping back. They are intensifying the campaign. This is like them finding out that Iraq had no WMD’s but ignoring it and insisting that Iraq’s WMD’s pose a threat to the UK.
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/apr/06/uk-us-case-file-russian-nerve-agent-shikhany-spy-poisoning

Mulga Mumblebrain
Reader
Mulga Mumblebrain

Michael, what else do you expect of the ‘Fraudian’? It makes the Express or Mail or even the NYT and WaPo look half decent in comparison. It shows just how tightly the ruling parasites control all information flows, that they so determinedly and completely destroyed the late ‘Guardian’ as a Leftish voice.

DavidKNZ
Reader
DavidKNZ

It looks likely that the Skripals are being held incommunicado, possibly against their will.
I mean, what would happen if they spoke freely and that cast doubts on the official story??
What to do?? What to do???
But wait.
We have a world class chemical facility a mere 9 km from Salisbury..
Ring fenced against prying reporters too…
I’m sure ‘Our Chaps’ could come up with something to make the problem go away.
https://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/drug-could-rid-people-of-bad-memories-and-trauma-9434684.html
“Drug could rid people of bad memories and trauma
“Fingolimod, a drug used for treating multiple sclerosis, could be used to get rid of bad memories
in sufferers of post-traumatic stress and anxiety”

mark
Reader
mark

I wouldn’t be surprised if the Skripals are found dead together in a field a la David Kelly in a “bizarre suicide pact.” Or we may learn one day soon that they have suffered a relapse and died “due to complications in their treatment.” They are clearly being held incommunicado, and this has been going on for over a month. Visits and visas denied, no contact or photographs. Yulia appears to have purloined a mobile phone from someone (nurse or member of staff?) and made a hurried, guarded and cryptic call to the niece while she had the chance. The… Read more »

Mulga Mumblebrain
Reader
Mulga Mumblebrain

And whatever happened to the doctor, the nurse and passers-by who tended to the Skripals as they sickened on the park bench? Where are they? Where are their interviews? Why did they NOT (apparently) die of exposure to a nerve agent ‘ ten times more powerful than VX’? If there was a body of journalists, not a sewer of presstitutes posing as such, in the UK, or the rest of the West, this farce would have been torn to shreds long ago.

vexarb
Reader

Meanwhile, back in the real world, what Chicken Licken and her friends are up to when they are not running around like headless chickens:
@VanessaBeeley reported that 14,800 mortars were launched into Damascus by NATZO’s Eastern Ghouta terrorists and have claimed the lives of 11,000 civilians since 2012, 1500 children, 30,000 permanently disabled

vexarb
Reader

THE STORY OF CHICKEN LICKEN AND HER 27 FRIENDS One day Chicken Licken went into the woods, an acorn fell on her poor little head, and she thought the sky had fallen. So Chicken Licken turned back, and met Henny Penny. Chicken Licken said, “Oh, Henny Penny, don’t go into the woods, for I was going, and the sky fell upon my Poor Little Head, and I ‘m going to Warn the World.” So Henny Penny turned back with Chicken Licken, and they met Cocky Locky. Then Henny Penny said, “Oh, Cocky Locky, I was going and met Chicken Licken,… Read more »

Mikalina
Reader
Mikalina

You’re not taking your indoctrination pill, are you?

vexarb
Reader

@Mikalina. Hard to swallow indoctrination pills after being fed on Chicken Licken and similar Subversive Literature at an impressionable age. Like that child who was marked for life by a grandmother reading aloud to him, “Thou shalt not follow a multitude to make a prat out of thyself”.

Estaugh
Reader
Estaugh

These puppets are piling up the Common law offences quicker than I can keep up, They would do tho’, wouldn’t they? Vexatious, to say the least. Reckon they are going for the whole nine yards, with the Rope thrown in, with. Soo, aubane happenstance, ye scholars, get ye to thy Blackstones’, McCauley and Erskine Mae; ‘Have at ye Varmints’; no-one is above the Law. No one is above, ‘lexus non scripta’; the unwritten LAW. Predates England or even the notion thereof, predates the Normans, the Romans, and who knows what more. ‘Tis a LAW grown from the soil of the… Read more »

DavidKNZ
Reader
DavidKNZ

Here in ‘pure’ NZ we have toxic algal blooms, which are ingested by filter feeding bivalve shellfish eg mussels Here is the official reference: https://www.mpi.govt.nz/travel-and-recreation/fishing/shellfish-biotoxin-alerts/toxic-shellfish-poisoning/ NSP is caused by brevetoxins or brevetoxin analogs that attack the nervous system. NSP is generally produced by the Karenia, Karlodinium or Gymnodinium genus. Symptoms Symptoms typically appear within 24 hours after ingestion. Symptoms may include: difficulty in swallowing double vision unsteadiness and tremors nausea diarrhoea vomiting numbness, including tingling of the mouth, lips and extremities (hands and feet) difficulty in distinguishing between hot and cold.. Sound familiar??

John Marks
Reader
John Marks

Maybe it was 1080?

Estaugh
Reader
Estaugh

Them Algaes are eating all our sh*t, leave them be, let them get the better of it .

BigB
Reader

Those algaes are a symptom of humanity breaking our planetary boundaries …particularly land usage change and organo-phosphate runoff (disrupting the nitrogen and phosphorus cycles): that and warming. That’s three planetary boundaries we’ve crossed combining. Benthic blooms are an increasing and recent phenomena that occur in “pure” water. Pretty soon we will have poisoned the whole damn place. Sorry, gone OT again.

JudyJ
Reader

@BigB – reassure yourself that going OT is a sign of an active, enquiring and informed mind!

JudyJ
Reader

I agree and wonder if this was investigated as a possibility in the Skripal case. I’m not a biochemist in any shape or form but I was just looking at a couple of academic papers about ‘Cephalopods as Vectors of Harmful Algal Bloom Toxins’ because, maybe coincidentally, Zizzi Restaurant chain offers squid (calamari) as a starter or main course. The academic papers say that if squid is eviscerated it presents LESS of a risk of transmitting toxins to the consumer but in traditional ITALIAN cookery it tends to be prepared whole. I think also that the ink, if used in… Read more »

Paul
Reader
Paul

Moon of Alabama is following up on the fish toxin angle now.
Sqwkbx is following up on BoJo’s claim that Porton Down does have reference batch to compare the Novichoks with. OPCW has replied that no state party has as yet declared they are in possession of Novichoks, which would make UK in contravention of OPCW rules.

bevin
Reader
bevin

Brian Cloughley is good too https://www.counterpunch.org/2018/04/06/bolton-and-johnson-the-malevolent-villain-and-the-vicious-buffoon-on-the-nuclear-stage/ It strikes me that Boris Johnson may be attempting to emulate the once famous : (from Wikipedia) “Le Pétomane (/ləˈpɛtəmeɪn/, French pronunciation: ​[ləpetɔˈman]) was the stage name of the French flatulist (professional farter) and entertainer Joseph Pujol (June 1, 1857 – 1945). He was famous for his remarkable control of the abdominal muscles, which enabled him to seemingly fart at will. His stage name combines the French verb péter, “to fart” with the -mane, “-maniac” suffix, which translates to “fartomaniac”. The profession is also referred to as “flatulist”, “farteur”, or “fartiste”.[1] “It is a… Read more »

Yonatan
Reader
Yonatan

Funny you should say that – someone else has the same idea:comment image

bevin
Reader
bevin

Of course, I saw that on this site. That must be where the idea came from.

Hugh O'Neill
Reader
Hugh O'Neill

I am not a great fan of toilet humour, but since that was the opening metaphor of the article, then an old Limerick may not be inappropriate:
“There was a young man from Jakarta, Who was a terrible farter
On the strength of one bean, He’d fart God save the Queen,
And Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata”

Hugh O'Neill
Reader
Hugh O'Neill

“SKRIPAL SOLVED!” Humour is sometimes the only response to the current dystopic farce, but it also permits lateral thinking. I awoke at 4am, thinking I had solved the Skripal Case (my apologies in advance, but I may have touched the door knob on entering the bedroom…). Herewith the solution: my wife, in her 60th year, started to learn the piano. Her teacher was one Portia Down, who once taught Les Dawson. Although her progress was slow, I was somewhat surprised when she told me she had been offered a gig at an Italian restaurant in Salisbury. The weather being inclement,… Read more »

bevin
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bevin

Michael Hudson in Counterpunch today on Skripal. It is worth reading.
https://www.counterpunch.org/2018/04/06/the-economics-behind-the-skripal-poisoning/

kweladave
Reader
kweladave

Michael Hudson’s article is fine – interesting points. The main being that there will be ‘blowback’ for UK because oligarchical financial outflows from Russia will stop – about $25b pa (half a trillion$ over 20 years) … “which the the Russian kleptocrats are now frightened and are moving their money out of England, out of the United States, out of Delaware corporate relations, out of the Cayman Islands or wherever they have it back into Russia.” There might be a be a huge flow of dollar/sterling back into into Russia. I seem to remember Putin saying, “that he had come… Read more »

flamingo
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flamingo

The counterpunch article is BS. The author cites the Guardian as if it were a reliable source document. Throughout the entire counterpunch interview it is used as means to truck out yet again all the anti Russia allegations as if they were absolute fact and only ever pertained to Russia. For an ‘economic’ story to totally ignore Nordstream 2 and world trade in gas, petroleum etc., it is a disgrace. This typical counterpunch providing cover for the official line by giving it a (poorly constructed) alternative view or stance. Counterpunch has NO credibility. It is a front for news spin… Read more »

mark
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mark

Counterpunch and Democracy Now are just faux Left controlled opposition in the Guardian mould. DN gets its funding from Soros and has been spewing out anti Assad and pro terrorist propaganda for months.

Mikalina
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Mikalina

Thanks for confirming my discomfort with the article. I usually just look on Counterpunch for authors I usually respect. Sadly, they seem to all be morphing into (or dismorphing back into) the ‘basic’ model churned out by the establishment.

MichaelK
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MichaelK

The BBC World Service is now saying that the government have denied Vikki Skripal a visa to visit Yulia in hospital, because they fear she has become pawn in the Kremlin’s game.

Mulga Mumblebrain
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Mulga Mumblebrain

There’s a surprise.

MichaelK
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MichaelK

I’m not keen on all these toilet analogies. It’s more like we’ve stepped through the looking glass into a strange new world, with Alice. This whole thing resembles a spy-thriller written by Lewis Carrol, where everything has been turned upside down, inside out and logic has been inverted. International laws and conventions, now mean what we say they mean, but that ‘meaning’ our interpretation may and will change, tomorrow; if we feel like it. ‘Tell us what the rules are?’ the Russians ask. ‘The rules are what we say they are, at the moment, and they don’t apply to us.’… Read more »

Mulga Mumblebrain
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Mulga Mumblebrain

Michael, speaking of the West as a toilet is not an analogy. It’s an ‘analofact’.

Mulga Mumblebrain
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Mulga Mumblebrain

You are ‘…surprised by the uniformity of the press comment’? Where have you been the last, say, forty years? Actually, make that ten or whatever, since the Fraudian was captured by the neo-conservatives.

Jane
Reader
Jane

Yes that is the way it seems to me too…Behind the Looking Glass ..
I worry that the further this story goes, and the longer it continues, the more difficult it becomes for the government and the media to step back, change tack or admit they perhaps got it wrong.
To turn back, for them may be more frightening and humiliating than pushing on with the narrative in the hope that it turns out to be a self fulling prophesy.

Mikalina
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Mikalina

I agree with your comments about ‘toilet’ analogues – a common occurrence with English males of a certain class who seem to be totally unaware of the offensive nature of this as a discussion subject amongst other cultures. You ask: “Where are the dissenters? Where are the people thinking and asking questions? What’s happened to them? Well, if they are called Assange, they are locked up in solitary confinement without phone, internet or visitors in the Ecuador Embassy. Perhaps he is still locked up because we all seem to be fascinated by ‘the rabbit’ rather than looking at murdered Palestinians,… Read more »

Chris
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Chris

Interesting how the Office of the British Prosecutor General(?) impressed on the Swedish authorities not to drop the Assange case in 2013, how the brits ignored a U.N. ruling on Assange. The illegalities of the British justice system…similar MO to the Scripal saga?

MICHAEL LEIGH
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MICHAEL LEIGH

I am amazed CHRIS at the number of visitors to this website, who appear to have forgotton that from perhaps as early as King Henry V111 that the British justice system, has become the ‘ un-just system ‘ par excellence for the last 500 or so years ?

DavidKNZ
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DavidKNZ

Relax;
John Helmer is usually spot on. But not always
He’s Australian.
..From stock selected by the best Judges in England
..Which may explain his sense of Humour

JudyJ
Reader

Well said. And as this metamorphosis into ‘the Ministry of Propaganda’ has occurred, free speech for free thinkers is being completely eroded at a pace.

Harry Stotle
Reader
Harry Stotle

“The hospital is treating the Skripals for their medical welfare and is required by hospital policy and UK law to be accountable to their next of kin.” – this claim needs to be unpacked a bit, apart from anything else it can be a really complex area. For example, remember the Charlie Gard case? https://www.judiciary.gov.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/gosh-v-gard-24072017.pdf If a normally capacitated individual is unable to provide informed consent (because they are too unwell, or mentally ill) then doctors are legally entitled to act in ‘the best interest’ of patients, especially when life saving measures are required. It is good practice to seek… Read more »

Jo
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Jo

Unless Porton Down scientists were working alongside nhs staff directly on the patients and thought to protect themselves by applying to the court for permission to take blood samples….?

JudyJ
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Harry, I agree that the doctors treating the Skripals would have more pressing issues and responsibilities than contacting relatives but I have no doubt that hospitals employ staff who have such duties. And not only that, there has been a QC acting on the Skripals’ behalf throughout to guarantee that their personal and legal interests were being respected and upheld and it appears from previous reports that he made no attempt to organise the identification and contacting of relatives in Russia. And with reference to your last paragraph, I think it was more a case of Stephen Davies’s letter slipping… Read more »

Harry Stotle
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Harry Stotle

Hi Judy, thanks for your reply – what the Skripals legal team did or didn’t do is a slightly seperate point to the one I raised. Off-G are simply incorrrect to say that the medics had a legal duty to inform relatives in Russia of the mechinations of the treatment given to Yulia and Sergei – put simply their duty is to the patient and on-one else. As I say it can be a complex area governed by a number of potentially conflicting principles such as the need to maintain patient confidentiality, or the need to supply information to a… Read more »

Admin
Reader

We did not say the medics had a duty to inform, we said the law requires the UK government to inform, which it does.
There are very clear laws governing next of kin consultation in these areas, especially in cases of incapacity, which we have quoted and sourced to in various articles. If close relatives were known of and could be contacted the stipulations are clear – they should be informed and their opinions requested. The High Court judgment shows this was avoided by falsely claiming the UK govt had little or no awareness of the existence of such relatives.

JudyJ
Reader

I have a small number of (constructive) observations highlighted for me by, although not exclusively relating to, this very interesting and informative article: 1. Russia legitimately makes use of a voting procedure under the CW Convention, seeking to get some insight into what is going on, and is outvoted. How can Johnson scurrilously make the defamatory statement that by taking this step they are “attempting to derail the proper international process”? Their right to take the step IS part of “the proper international process”. 2. I am astounded that it appears that even after the OPCW has submitted their final… Read more »

mark
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mark

This is just a rerun of the MH17 report, where Ukraine was given a veto over the contents.
Now the same thing is happening with the UK government being given a veto over the OPCW report.
And OPCW behaviour over the Syrian gas allegations do not exactly inspire very much confidence in its integrity.
Russia needs to make it clear that if the OPCW does not follow established procedures, as it as done before, and freezes Russia out of the process, Russia will not take part and give credibility to the whole tawdry process.

Mulga Mumblebrain
Reader
Mulga Mumblebrain

Oh, come on. Is there ANYTHING that May and Johnson and the entire UK fakestream media sewer do in regard to Russia that is NOT scurrilous?

JudyJ
Reader

@Mulga – Too true!

Paul
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Paul

“Everything is solvable” is an interesting phrase. It suggests there has been a ‘problem’ of some sort and Julia knows what it is. Perhaps it relates to Sergei’s stash of stolen money; maybe he’s fallen out with other Russian criminals on the lam in the UK; as we know they often kill each other.

mohandeer
Reader

The British Govt.(both sides of the aisle, because the Blairites and other right wingers are goose stepping to the Tory tune)are trying to set a World Record to beat America’s, on how many International Laws we can obfuscate, terminate or violate whilst trying to plumb the depths of the cesspit through which they have been wading for several decades in a bid to sink this country to the very bottom of that toilet excretia – IN OUR NAME!

BigB
Reader

Nevermind Salisbury hospital: what is happening in the rest of the country? The fictionalising effects of Novichok were never containable and seem to have contaminated outward countrywide: with a seeming particular left-sided bias. As the ‘evidence’ of Novichok collapsed: it took less than a day for the Cargo Cult of Corbynism to carry their Great White Hope away from the scene …borne on the palimpsest of promised future creature comfort and the cushioned mirage of a false promise of insular economic well-being …borne aloft by the epistemically unchallengeable indifference of the party faithful: his “right side of history” reputation enhanced… Read more »

mog
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mog

Again BigB, I totally agree. I consider this to be the most significant consequence of the whole bizarre affair, and I hear precious few people acknowledging the fact.
We have crossed into a ‘Post-Skripal world’.
We are asleep,
…on a bicycle,
……on a tightrope,
…..on fire.

Big B
Reader
Big B

Thanks for the solidarity. I’m pretty sure people do not actually read what Corbyn says (or know what he does): they just have an aspirational idea of him in their head. The whole idea Labour is a populous party (they are that) with democratic grassroots support is a popular mythos (as you know better than I). Lansman got rid of Jackie Walker on trumped up anti-Semitic grounds; then pulled a coup on the orders of Corbyn’s team; de-democratising the grassroots and taking the power for himself; Corbyn just stabbed Christine Shawcroft in the back (also on trumped up anti-Semitic charges… Read more »

mog
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mog

@ Big B
All that.
Spoke to Momentum rep out canvassing for by-elections yesterday and raised most of those points with them.
The response was a kind of acknowledgement and respect for a stand that held truth to be important, yet at the same time a return to the triangulation of centrist years in “the Tories/ LibDems are worse”.
Also yesterday, catching up with old pals who also see through the charade.
Gave me hope.

Mulga Mumblebrain
Reader
Mulga Mumblebrain

Yes-the choice now, regarding Corbyn, is between whether he was always a Trojan Horse, a sort of Sanders or geriatric Obama, or has simply surrendered to the Judeofascist lynch-mob and its Tory, fakestream media and Blairite accomplices. Either way I expect a snap election, a Tory triumph as Corbyn is a Putinbot traitor, the Blairites back in control, Momentum disbanded as ‘antisemitic’ and BDS and ALL criticism of Israel criminalised as ‘antisemitism’- by Christmas.

Mulga Mumblebrain
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Mulga Mumblebrain

Corbyn is too busy cowering before the Zionazi, Blairite and fakestream media lynch-mob that is assailing Labour, for the crime, as one UK Jewish ‘leader’ exclaimed, in a fit of candour, of being ‘too Leftwing’, and, of course, of the Supreme Crime -‘criticising Israel’. Corbyn is attempting to satisfy the piranha pool, by throwing sacrificial victims off the boat, but the scent of blood in the water only ever encourages them. Corbyn is plainly a coward.

flamingo
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flamingo

Distracting and distorting nonsense BigB. Diverting the thread is a very poor tactic. The rights of two humans have been ‘stolen’ by the NHS and its establishment authorities. People in hospital situations do not surrender their rights except those pertaining to decisions they might make regarding offered medications and procedures. Two people are effectively isolated and interred in a UK hospital and all outside access to them is being denied. The phone call is alarming to the extent that Julia is being mighty cautious with words as I see it. She has been denied access to her personal phone. A… Read more »

Mulga Mumblebrain
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Mulga Mumblebrain

Flaming go-you’re not perturbed by Corbyn leading the Russophobic Putin-bashing, and praising the Western subversive Navalny, Mr. 4% in public support in Russia, as a hero of opposition to evil Putin?

MICHAEL LEIGH
Reader
MICHAEL LEIGH

Thank you FLAMINGO for your observation, un-commented until now as to Julia Skripal being deprived of the use of her own telephone, even the central Hospital operator-moderated bedside phone ?
This patient is obviously a prisoner and the tragedy is that the MOP ‘ Ministry of Propaganda ‘ ensures that the Government has, and exercises this ultimate loss of liberty, without recourse to any democratic pretensions, so often a feature of MOP false proclaimations !

BigB
Reader

Actually Flamingo: you have a very good point. I was in a rush: I didn’t really read the article, just the title and tags then pasted in my comment. But then again, reading some of the comments and scatological humour: not sure why you would single me out? If I have caused you offence, I apologise. I don’t make a habit of commenting OT. (BTW: everything the authorities have said in the last month is a lie. Nothing can be taken at face value. Are you absolutely sure of your position? Because other than the phone call, which is not… Read more »

flamingo
Reader
flamingo

Then shall we permanently assemble a large party crowd in front of the hospital inviting the Skripals to come and join us to celebrate life and freedom and we will bring cake and tea stalls and maybe invite the Russian Ambassador. We could arrange a broadcast video link to all her friends and relatives that choose to get online.
Call the establishment’s bluff and give truth to BS. Perhaps we could invite Jeremy Corbyn?

flamingo
Reader
flamingo

As an afterthought may I add this. The Official Secrets Act has likely been invoked since that pesky clinical superintendent wrote the letter blowing their tissue cover and pointing out that only 3 people were affected by some poison. Shall someone ask the health union if its members are being threatened under the Official Secrets or any other Act? Shall we build momentum for freedom from these Tory fake crisis makers and stage Skripal teas in front of every hospital in addition to the one they are in demanding that mandatory incarceration at the whim of a doctor be made… Read more »

BigB
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You forgot: there was a fourth person, a female doctor, who was cross-contaminated at the scene after treating the person identified as Yulia Skripal. I’m not surprised you forgot, she was memory-holed in week two as being irreconcilable with the authoritarian narrative. Does it not bother you that the entire Establisment idiotocracy and their media bullhorns can turn a blind eye to such glaring inconsistencies? Now we make believe and carry on to vote for the least worst of two very bad alternatives? [Actually, they briefly tried to accommodate her in the narrative …which should have been a red flag… Read more »

Mulga Mumblebrain
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Mulga Mumblebrain

BigB, I seem to remember early reports that there were passers-by and a nurse who also tended to the stricken Skipals. Where are they?

Paul
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Paul

Even more telling about the phone call is the lack of response from the Authorities (BBC). The tape isn’t authenticated and there are (unknown) reasons to doubt its authenticity. When they ask her if she called is she denying it? Trying to keep access to the phone she used. In reality you would expect the electronic surveillance to have picked up the call; maybe the phone was a regular one? If says she did call her cousin why are the Authorities so reluctant to admit it? A likely explanation for the whole fiasco is that Nobody is In Charge, they… Read more »

bevin
Reader
bevin

“It is not politically charged enough to make the necessary commitment to a real anti-capitalist anti-war iconoclastic ripping up of the rules: and the visionary rewriting of history toward a universal egalitarian ecology and economy …prefering instead a promisary slight return to a fake historic recollection of wealth for the comfort insularised neo-colonial UK. Indeed, those I have spoken to recently want only the return to the military Keynesianism of capitalism’s “Golden Years”. Well, if you will. But I would contend those days (of cheap hydrocarbon fueled inauthentic ‘prosperity’) are forever gone: and history will continue to march past and… Read more »

mohandeer
Reader

Back pedalling on an issue is entirely your own choice, you do so from your own perceived beliefs which I, in this instance, disagree with. That does not mean that you are entirely wrong or that I am entirely right but twisting recorded facts and performing gymnastics with those facts in a way that totally diminishes the truth of what has been noted from spoken and heard words to printed resurrections of those words doesn’t change them. Corbyn can be as compromising as he chooses with regards NATO, Trident, Russophobia and this scurrilous accusation aginst Russia regarding the Skripals and… Read more »

Mikalina
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Mikalina

Brilliant.

BigB
Reader

I respect your POV: but I am not sure what you are getting at. I probably overthought my position: but here is what I mean. Read these words: “We can therefore draw no other conclusion than that Russia has a direct or indirect responsibility for this.” Are they equivocal? Are they a contradiction or confirmation of the government position taken over the Skripal affair? I would say that they unequivocally mean what they say: yet when confronted with these or other statements Corbyn made …people I know within the Labour movement can perform all sorts of mental gymnastics to say… Read more »

Mulga Mumblebrain
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Mulga Mumblebrain

Thanks BigB. Is it Stockholm Syndrome you are thinking of? It looks very, very, much like Corbyn is just another Trojan Horse, designed to lead the gullible into the desert. Navalny? The stinking nationalistic fascist (the USA’s preferred type of stooge) who stood FIFTH in popular opinion before being outed for his corruption. Corbyn speaks highly of him? Ye Gods and little fishies!!!

JudyJ
Reader

Navalny corrupt? Look admit it, you only have the Russian High Court’s word for it and we all know they’re Putin’s puppets! Or so suggests our credible mainstream media without ever even bothering to establish what Navalny was specifically charged with and what the evidence was. Paradoxically, in the western media’s world, Navalny like everyone else convicted in Russia is innocent even when proven guilty. Anyone who believes Putin trumped up the charges to remove the threat of lunatic Navalny needs their head examined. In fact I think Putin’s ploy is to let him have a free rein to indulge… Read more »

vexarb
Reader

Agreed, Corbyn is no Attlee — but even Attlee agreed to the Great British Lunatic Bomb (afraid to go “naked to the Councils of the Great”). The tendency to “March in Lockstep” (as you call it) with our fellows is a fundamental human trait because we are herd animals together with our sheep and our cows and our dogs, and to preserve the herd is the best strategy to preserve Me along with the rest of Us. Nevertheless, not to question the present Dodgy Dossier from MI6 was a gross error of judgment by JC . As for Abbot and… Read more »

BigB
Reader

Actually Vex, I normally March in “lockstep “.with you, especially over Syria …but here I beg to differ. First, UK “democracy” has always been a tyranny of the minority. The silent majority are, well, silent and disengaged from politics …which is worrisome as landed autocracy only have to control a few “rotten boroughs” to maintain perpetual power. I believe it can come down to as few as 30,000 ‘swing votes’ that decide which Establisment party gets in. With CA, SCL and their analogues employed they can assured of the correct result …well, nearly always! Corbyn this, Corbyn that …one in… Read more »

BigB
Reader

BTW: indiscretion aside, I was one of 250,000 that marched with Michael Foot and CND …I expect Jeremy did too (actually, I marched with Jeremy not that long ago). In my estimation, the “Great British Lunatic Bomb” situation is much more perilous than it was then …especially with the insane Yanks lowering their nuclear threshold : while the MI6 mouthpieces (including JC) ratchet up the tension. Where are they? Why are there not millions in Trafalgar Square? Have we all been emasculated and inveigled by authority? Or just grown old like you and I? [A rhetorical point: I know you… Read more »

vexarb
Reader

Funny, only yesterday I was looking at my old slides of people on a CND march. I snapped them as they passed Kensington Gardens, near Imperial College, because I was a young engineering student newly arrived in Britain, and had been assured by the newspapers that they were weird folk in duffle coats. My slides show nice, ordinary people, the sort one would like to have as neighbours. And I attended a CND meeting where the main speaker introduced himself as a Christian Socialist and that was why he was against war, which seemed very reasonable to me. You are… Read more »

Paul
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Paul

Back in the day the Left had support from the Guardian and Observer and a semi socialist Labour Party. Look at the pressure over Suez and then Kenya in the 50’s. These days we’d have the Guardian lauding the brave Israeli’s, French and British fighting the dictator Nasser. The torture and killing in East Africa by a virulent white ruling class would be welcomed as promoting stability. Now there isn’t a media outlet that isn’t right of centre supporting neoliberalism and neoconservatism and anything even slightly left of centre, like the current Shadow Cabinet, is scorned as Communist traitors and/or… Read more »

mohandeer
Reader

In case you haven’t noticed BigB, the left is no longer left – it’s somewhere on another planet and it’s faithful proponents are dicking around re-writing all that socialism stands for in order to fall in line with the Washington “foreign interventionist” and “democratisation” playbook with a big F**k you to the masses. I limit my socialist reading to REAL support of the Marxist ideals such as I ever understood them to mean and stick with them only. The faux left are in a popularity contest and the only ones qualifying to take part are those who toe the neoliberal… Read more »

BigB
Reader

I did notice: about thirty years ago! What bothers me now is the depth of delusion surrounding a certain person is almost maniacal. We both thought we were involved in building a new kind of politics: democratic grassroots support for capitalist imperialism, Zionism and Cold War xenophobia as it turns out. Well, I won’t be fooled again …but that’s what I said in the Blair years! See you on the barricades, Comrade!

mohandeer
Reader

Reblogged this on Worldtruth.

Paul
Reader
Paul

Why don’t they ask Julia if she called her cousin? The police statement said to be on her behalf says virtually nothing except she’s been ‘disoriented’. I imagine we’ll be hearing more of that when the inconsistencies come clear.

Mulga Mumblebrain
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Mulga Mumblebrain

I expect the Skripals to suffer ‘tragic’ relapses.

elenits
Reader

It seems that the UK believes that if it just keeps doubling down on this lie and nonsense (and kidnapping), someone somewhere will eventually believe them.