Thursday, March 5, 2020

The Salisbury Poisonings Two Years On: A Riddle, Wrapped in a Cover Up, Inside a Hoax

By Rob Slane - March 05, 2020 at 04:01PM


I’ve said some stupid things in my time, but up there with the best of them was a comment I uttered to my wife on the morning of Tuesday 6th March 2018. The previous night the news had broken that an ex-spy by the name of Sergei Skripal had apparently been one of two people hospitalised on the Sunday afternoon on a bench in The Maltings in Salisbury. At that time the opioid, Fentanyl, was thought to be connected to it. Was this about to be a huge international story? Or was it going to soon be forgotten about? I was decidedly of the latter opinion. “Don’t worry,” I told her. “Probably just a drug overdose. It’ll soon blow over.”​

​Two years later…​

​Actually, two years on and most people have pretty much forgotten about it. Yes, they remember that it happened; yes, they remember that it was a mighty odd occurrence with a number of peculiarities about it; and for the people of Salisbury, I’m quite sure they will recall the police, the cordons, the helicopters, the place swarming with international media, and of course let’s not forget the baby wipes. But by and large, it happened, it’s done with, and the case was solved a long while ago.​

​Except that it wasn’t. Not by any stretch of the imagination. The fact is that two of the many Russians who were in Salisbury on 3rd and 4th March, and who were charged with the incident — Petrov and Boshirov — have never been charged with the subsequent incident in Amesbury.

This is very important.

If the British authorities’ case against the two men in Salisbury is to be believed, there must be a clear link between them and the second case in Amesbury. And yet it is impossible to reasonably connect the two cases based on the British authorities’ explanation of the Salisbury event. Unless, that is, you believe that the two suspects were carrying a cellophane-wrapping machine with them with which to wrap the bottle of lethal nerve agent they had apparently just used before dumping it in a bin. But nobody could be daft enough to believe that, could they? Which leads to the question: if the cases cannot be linked using the British authorities’ explanation of the first incident — which they can’t (hence the reason the two men have not been charged for the second) — then how can we accept their explanation for the first?

The answer is that we cannot, and for a whole host of reasons, as I hope to show in a moment.

For those who have accepted The Met’s and Government’s account of the case, I am struck by a couple of things. Firstly, their claims that those who haven’t accepted it are conspiracy theorists is really quite funny when you begin to count the number of absurd, implausible and sometimes downright impossible things that one has to believe to accept that official account (of which more below).

But secondly, I am struck by their remarkable apathy and complacency, given what they claim to believe. Let me put it this way: if I truly believed that agents of a foreign power had come to my country and had entered my home city carrying, using and discarding enough deadly nerve agent to kill thousands of people in my neighbourhood, I would not only be livid at that foreign Government; I would be absolutely furious with the British authorities for their pathetic, feeble response. Two dozen diplomats expelled in response to the use of the (apparently) deadliest nerve agent known to man, which could have wiped out half the population of Salisbury? It’s the equivalent of sentencing an attempted murderer to a £100 fine.

Of course, while I accept that a declaration of war in response to such a reckless act would have been a step too far, given that Russia is a nuclear-armed country with a hugely powerful military, I would certainly want a response that was far closer to that than the paltry expelling of a few diplomats. However, the fact that those who bark the loudest about the alleged use of a nerve agent that could have killed 10,000 people are prepared to accept the expulsion of a few diplomats as an adequate response, suggests that many of them are not nearly as convinced as they make out that a lethal nerve agent was indeed used. ​Either that or they’re just a bit wet!

​I am, however, livid at the British authorities for an entirely different reason. And it is this: I really don’t like being lied to. I really don’t like handing over hard-earned money in taxation, only to see it squandered away by people who devise the most elaborate deceptions to divert attention away from what really happened. Nothing personal, you understand. I don’t like the fact that anyone has their hard-earned cash frittered away in this way.

That’s a big claim I just made. Elaborate deceptions are not accusations I bandy about lightly. But as I hope to show below, I can see no other explanation for the many absurdities, implausibilities and downright impossibilities in the case put forward by the Government and Metropolitan Police (The Met) for what took place in Salisbury.

Let’s begin with the case against the two Russians who have been charged over the Salisbury incident. Whenever I have been involved in a discussion on this case with folks on Twitter, invariably someone pops up to say that the case is closed, and the guilt of this pair has been shown to be true. Incontrovertibly. Yet when examined carefully, the evidence of the apparent guilt of this pair turns out to be incredibly threadbare. There are three basic parts to it:

1) That they were in the vicinity of Mr Skripal’s house on 4th March, as seen on footage taken outside a Shell garage on Salisbury’s Wilton Road

2) That “Novichok” was found in the hotel room they stayed in the night before

3) That they were/are agents of the GRU (Russian military police)

On that first point, the fact is that the Shell garage is approximately 500 yards from 47 Christie Miller Road. Whilst this may be “in the vicinity” in a very general sense, it is nothing like “the vicinity” that would be needed to convince a juror that they actually went there, much less that they daubed the door handle with a substance, and needless to say, one cannot simply daub a door handle from 500 yards away.

Furthermore, in the footage shown of them, they were seen walking on the opposite side of the road to the two routes (a path or a road) which they would have to have taken to reach the house. If I had been going to Christie Miller Road along that route, I would either have crossed the road before then, or I would have crossed at the small traffic island opposite the garage, which can just be seen on the footage. Yet they did not appear to cross or to be about to cross.

However, there is more. Although The Met showed these few seconds from this camera, what they failed to inform the public is that there is a second camera just after the first, one which does cover both routes to chez Skripal. And so if the men had taken either of these routes that they would have needed to take to get to Christie Miller Road, this second camera would have shown it. Why was it not shown then? That’s probably more a question for The Met than for me, but if I was a juror in the case, I should most definitely want to see the footage from that second camera in order to confirm or deny whether they did indeed cross the road to use those routes. In short: the footage from the first camera is certainly not proof that they actually went to Mr Skripal’s house; the refusal to use footage from the second camera casts serious doubts that they did.

And of course given who Mr Skripal was, his house and front door would have been covered by CCTV. In which case, if the men actually did go there, The Met could show it. But they never have.

The second point is even flimsier. It was claimed that the tiniest trace of “Novichok” was found in the hotel room they were staying in. However, a second swab apparently turned up nothing. In other words, you need to trust The Met and Porton Down on this. Right? Er no. Firstly, we are talking about the same people that allegedly found the “Novichok” at the beginning of May 2018, yet failed to inform the hotel owner until September of that year of their finding in his hotel (I’m not into suing, but he should have sued). Not only this, but they also failed to trace those who had stayed at the hotel from 4th March to May. Not exactly convincing, is it?

But in any case, the idea is self-evidently ludicrous. Why would there have been a tiny trace of the stuff in the hotel room? If there was a leak, why wasn’t the hotel closed, and the trains the men traveled on decontaminated? Or are we supposed to believe that the guys took it out to have a sniff the night before, and spilled just enough for one, but not two swabs? Yep, that’s what we’re asked to believe. Fine, believe it, if it gives you pleasure. But to those with more discerning minds, it does sound suspiciously like a detail made up by people who make stuff up, doesn’t it?

The third point — that the two suspects were agents of the GRU (Russian military intelligence) — is by far the most serious. I accept that they probably were, although I do so with the caveat that one of the most strikingly odd things about this case is that this has never been officially confirmed. Sure, an organisation that rhymes with Smellingrat has stated this, and so too have numerous politicians, but it has not actually been stated on the official charges against them. To this day, the Crown Prosecution Service’s charges against them still use their apparent pseudonyms — Petrov and Boshirov — and do not mention their apparent true identities. I find that very odd.

Nonetheless, as I say I accept that they probably were agents of Russian Military Intelligence. It is this which is enough for many to confirm their guilt as attempted assassins. Well, if their actions comported with how military intelligence officers on assassination missions act, I would be inclined to agree. But they don’t. Not even remotely. There is nothing about their actions, as shown by The Met, that in any way convince that they were on a state-sanctioned assassination mission. They traveled together. They operated in broad daylight. They made no attempt to evade detection by CCTV. They cavorted with a prostitute the night before. They smoked dope and attracted attention in their hotel room the night before. After allegedly finishing their top-secret mission, they strolled into town. They took pictures. They went window shopping. Nerve agent assassins? I think not!
“Oh,” comes the scoffing reply, “so you believe their story about being tourists come to see the cathedral and Old Sarum? Idiot.”

“No,” comes my equally scoffing reply. “Why should I? But why would I limit myself to two possibilities — tourists or deadly assassins — neither of which actually fit their actions? Have we not imagination enough to think of more than two options? Goodness, what do they teach them in these schools!?”
How about this: Yes, they were in Salisbury on a mission from the Russian state, but no it was not an assassination attempt — not unless Vladimir Putin has taken to employing muppets to carry out highly sensitive and dangerous missions of the Russian state. But seriously, does he strike you as someone who would tend to give the most highly sensitive missions to a couple of pot-smoking, prostitute-cavorting, picture-snapping, CCTV-friendly, window-shopping dudes? Hardly!

Yet they were almost certainly doing something there other than tourism, as they claimed, and my guess is that it was connected to where they went on the Saturday 3rd March, which The Met laughably tried to tell us was a reconnaissance mission to check out Mr Skripal’s house. A reconnaissance mission? Ha ha! Reminder: this is Salisbury, not Afghanistan or Idlib. You can walk about unhindered, unmolested, and you can even locate 47 Christie Miller Road using Google Maps. So why would they have needed to do reconnaissance on a house that they allegedly walked up to in broad daylight the following day?

But even more than this, if they went to check out the house on the Saturday, why did they not daub the door handle then? The Skripals were out at the time. It would have been the ideal time to do it, if that was what they were intending. But no, The Met wants you to believe that they came to Salisbury, secretly made their way to Mr Skripal’s house, saw it, noted that no one was at home, decided not to “Novichok” the door handle there and then, but instead go back to London (where they had apparently left their “Novichok” all day long in their hotel room), and come back the following day to do it when — according to The Met — the Skripals were at home and their car in the drive!

It really is such an utterly stupid and preposterous proposition, that I have no doubt this is why The Met decided to give no timeline of where and when they went in Salisbury on the Saturday; to present no footage; and to show no pictures, save for one at the train station. For had they shown such footage, I am quite sure that far from it showing them going out of the town towards Mr Skripal’s house for reconnaissance, it would show them going into town for reconnaissance, probably near The Mill pub and the Maltings, where the following day they just happened to be in the vicinity of the Skripals at about 1:45 — far closer than the Shell garage footage shows them in the vicinity of the house.

None of the above evidence would pass muster in a courtroom. It is flimsy, it’s pathetic and it’s full of holes.

But talking of holes, let’s now set this all in the context of the entire story presented by The Met and the Government. I mentioned above the number of absurd, implausible and sometimes downright impossible things that one has to believe to accept their account. Below, I’ve recounted 40 of the most glaring, although I’m sure regular readers here can think of many, many more. In case of doubt, I have annexed a comment next to each point, depending on whether it fits into the absurd, implausible or impossible category, although I understand that some readers may well think it remiss of me not to have given some of them more than one of those descriptions:

1) That two men put themselves and everyone on their flight in jeopardy, by boarding a plane with at least one, possibly two, bottles of the World’s Deadliest Nerve Agent (WDNA) in their luggage. ​(ABSURD)

2) That the two suspects dropped an unused package of the WDNA in a bin somewhere, whilst taking the used bottle of nerve agent back to Moscow with them. ​(ABSURD)

3) Or alternatively, that they only had one package of WDNA with them, but brought a cellophane wrapping machine to Salisbury to wrap the used box up in, before discarding it. ​(ABSURD)

4) That the two men sprayed WDNA in an open space, without wearing any protective clothing. ​(ABSURD)

5) That after they had done this, rather than legging it, they decided to spend an hour in the city centre window-shopping and taking pictures. ​(ABSURD)

6) That Mr Skripal and his daughter both somehow managed to touch the door handle of his front door on their way out (try it with someone next time you exit your house).​ (IMPLAUSIBLE)

7) That despite being contaminated with WDNA, they showed no effects for hours afterwards​. (IMPLAUSIBLE)

8) That when they did show effects hours later, it was at precisely the same time, despite their very different heights, weights and metabolisms. (IMPLAUSIBLE)

9) That despite being contaminated with WDNA, they went into town, fed ducks, went for a meal, then went to a pub for a drink.​ (IMPLAUSIBLE)

10) That despite having hands contaminated with WDNA, Mr Skripal handed a piece of bread to a local boy who ate it without becoming contaminated. (IMPLAUSIBLE)

11) That despite having hands that were contaminated with WDNA, Mr Skripal somehow managed to contaminate the table in Zizzis, but not the door or door handle on the way in. (IMPLAUSIBLE)

12) That despite having hands that were contaminated with WDNA, Mr Skripal somehow managed not to contaminate the manager of Zizzis when he shook hands with him (confirmed to me by a local source). (IMPLAUSIBLE)

13) That after becoming extremely aggressive in Zizzis, which some assume was the effects of poisoning with WDNA​, Mr Skripal wolfed down a plate of seafood risotto before sauntering over to the pub for a drink. (IMPLAUSIBLE)

14) That no CCTV of Mr Skripal or his daughter on 4th March could be shown to the public to jog their memories, because of something called “National Security”. (ABSURD)

15) That no CCTV could be shown of The Maltings, on the grounds of National Security, even though according to the official story no crime took place there. (ABSURD)

16) That the Russian couple who were filmed on CCTV camera at 15:47 in Market Walk (confirmed by a reliable source in the comment section on this blog), were not in any way connected with the case. (IMPLAUSIBLE)

17) That the only CCTV the public were allowed to see of this pair was an absurd, blurred, fuzzy image taken second hand on a mobile phone, when they could have shown crystal clear footage from the CCTV camera at the other end of Market Walk. (ABSURD)

18) That the Skripals were somehow in Zizzis at the same time that they were actually in the Mill pub (The Met’s timeline shows them to have been in Zizzis from 14:20 and 15:35, which is demonstrably untrue). (IMPOSSIBLE)

19) That the Metropolitan Police are unable to put out correct timelines. (IMPLAUSIBLE)

20) That WDNA deteriorated so much after an hour on a door handle, that it was too weak to kill the Skripals. (IMPLAUSIBLE)

21) That this same WDNA, which allegedly deteriorated in an hour, was then found three weeks later after exposure to the elements and after being touched by many human hands, to be in a state of “high purity, persistent and weather resistant”. (IMPOSSIBLE)

22) That WDNA, which was allegedly sprayed on a door handle, somehow managed to spread to the roof of the house, meaning that it had to be replaced. (IMPOSSIBLE)

23) Yet that same WDNA, 2mg of which is apparently enough to kill a person (according to BBC Panorama), and which causes whole roofs to have to be replaced and cars to be destroyed, can be cleansed by members of the public using baby wipes. (ABSURD)

24) That the police cars which attended the Maltings needed to be destroyed, yet the ones that attended Mr Skripal’s house, where the poison was apparently most concentrated, did not. (ABSURD)

25) That Detective Sergeant Nicholas Bailey managed to be a first responder at the bench when the two Russians were on it, at the same time as not being at the bench when the two Russians were on it. (IMPOSSIBLE)

26) That Mr Bailey entered Mr Skripal’s house via the back door, because he couldn’t open the front door; but also managed to enter the house via the front door because he was able to open it. (IMPOSSIBLE)

27) That he was wearing a forensic suit to enter the house of someone who had apparently overdosed in a park on Fentanyl. (ABSURD)

28) That he managed to get contaminated by WDNA despite wearing a forensic suit. (IMPLAUSIBLE)

29) That the numerous police officers not wearing forensic suits, who went in and out of the house on 4th and 5th March, did not become contaminated by WDNA, even though it was allegedly found to be most concentrated there three weeks later, and in a state of “high purity”. (IMPOSSIBLE)

30) That the police somehow managed to miss all four of Mr Skripal’s pets (two cats and two guinea pigs), so leaving them to starve to death. (IMPLAUSIBLE)

31) That an air ambulance was called for what looked like a drug overdose on a park bench, when a land ambulance can get to the hospital just as quickly, if not quicker given where the helicopter had to land. (ABSURD)

32) That the chief nurse of the British Army just happened to be shopping near the bench when the two Russians were on it. (ABSURD)

33) That there just happened to be two Porton Down trained doctors at Salisbury District Hospital. (ABSURD)

34) That despite The Met, the Government and the media referring to the substance used as “Novichok”, in their only official statement to a court of law, Porton Down were unable to confirm this, instead referring to it as “a nerve agent or related compound” and “a Novichok class nerve agent or closely related agent.” (ABSURD)

35) That Porton Down were able to identify a substance within 36 hours that apparently no other country on earth makes, has made, or can make. (IMPLAUSIBLE)

36) That “Novichok” can only be made in Russia, despite variants of it having been synthesised or stocked in numerous countries including Czechia, Sweden, Germany, Iran, the US, and Britain (Boris Johnson having unwittingly confirmed this when he blurted out that they had samples of it at Porton Down). (IMPOSSIBLE)

37) That after she and her father were allegedly poisoned by the Russian state, Yulia Skripal said she wanted to return there. (ABSURD)

38) That Mr Skripal and his daughter have never been seen together since — not even in a single photo. (IMPLAUSIBLE)

39) That nothing has ever been heard from Mr Skripal since (national security won’t wash – his daughter was able to appear in a video). (ABSURD)

40) That Salisbury had its first case of Fentanyl poisoning on the same day, at the same time, and in the same shopping centre apparently involving another couple. (IMPLAUSIBLE)

Remember, this list of the absurd, the implausible, and the downright impossible is not a bunch of lunacy that I or anyone else looking into the case has concocted. No, they are things that the Government of Great Britain, and The Metropolitan Police have concocted. It’s their story, not mine, and I’m just pointing it out and saying, “Hey, come look at this. No clothes and all that!” That being said, it is of course those who point out this absurd, implausible and impossible folly who are called conspiracy theorists by the keepers of the narrative and their devotees, which is rather like being called a scruffbag by Dominic Cummings. But no matter, better to be called a conspiracy theorist for pointing out patent absurdities and things which are impossible than to be a Believer in Patent Absurdities and Impossible Things.

Speculation Corner

Having cleared that Stuff and Nonsense out of the way, what did happen on 4th March 2018 in Salisbury? I am bound to disappoint people looking for the answer, as I simply don’t know. I don’t know because the keepers of the keys of the Stuff and Nonsense have not only done their utmost to keep the truth away from the light (such as refusing to release even a jot of CCTV footage of the Skripals that day), but the sheer number of absurdities and conflicting stories they have put out make it impossible for those watching from afar to be sure about which things happened on that day, and which things were subsequently added to obscure the truth. All we can say, for sure, is what didn’t happen (see above).

Nevertheless, there are a couple of big clues that allow us to speculate as to something of the nature of the thing. These are The Mill Pub and Detective Sergeant Nicholas Bailey. They are not clues in the sense of us being able to know what role they played. But they are clues in the sense of the authorities never being able to come out with a straight answer about the location and the man, thereby giving rise to speculation that the bizarre and conflicting tales about them are extremely important.

Take Mr Bailey, for instance. Where exactly was he on that evening and where exactly did he succumb to poisoning? As hinted at above, he has been placed in multiple places, depending on who has been telling the story and when they’ve been telling it. He has been:

- A first responder to the incident at the bench

- Not a first responder to the incident at the bench

- Not at the bench when the two Russians were there

- At the bench after the incident happened

- At the house at midnight entering by the front door

- At the house at midnight but unable to enter the front door

- Admitted to Salisbury District Hospital on the Monday morning

- Not admitted to Salisbury District hospital on the Monday morning, but on the Tuesday Morning

- Admitted to Salisbury District Hospital on the Monday morning, discharged but readmitted on the Tuesday

How can it have been so difficult to establish where he was? His movements would have been easy to trace. Why were they not and why have so many different stories been mooted? As I wrote back here:
“I would submit that the most reasonable view to take — until evidence confirms otherwise — is that Detective Sergeant Bailey was poisoned neither at the bench nor the house, but somewhere else altogether.”
Actually, I think that there is some evidence for this. Here is what a Freedom of Information request revealed about how The Met were to deal with questions posed by the media about Mr Bailey. Note that this was on 9th March, two weeks before the door handle claim was first made:
“IF ASKED: Why was a detective sergeant (Nick Bailey) a first responder?

ANSWER: He attended the initial scene in the town centre.

IF ASKED: It’s been suggested DS Bailey was contaminated at Skripal’s house. Did he go to the house? Can you confirm he definitely went to the Maltings?

ANSWER: He was a first responder to the initial scene in the town centre. We are not discussing further [my italics].”
So he was a first responder to the “initial scene” in the town centre. Okay, but according to Mr Bailey himself, on the BBC Panorama Programme, he was not a first responder at the bench when the Russian pair were there. He claimed to have wandered down there sometime after it had all finished, which means that he was not a first responder at that scene. Which means what? It means that there was another scene. That is implied in the phrase “initial scene”. Clearly, if there was an initial scene, there must have also been a subsequent scene. And equally clearly, it cannot have been anything to do with the house or the door handle, because on 9th March, when this instruction was given, there was officially only one scene — that is, the bench. The door handle story had not yet emerged.

Put all that together and what is the inescapable conclusion? Mr Bailey was indeed injured, but it was at an initial scene — that is at a scene that occurred prior to whatever happened at the bench.

Let’s come back to that after looking at the other big clue, The Mill. In the aftermath of 4th March, the back of the Mill was closed off and the chaps in HazMats were busy doing their thing there. But hang on a minute. Why was this? That area was never any part of the official story. There was never any suggestion whatsoever that Mr Skripal or his daughter had been there, and so why would it have needed cleaning up? From what?

In addition, we know that the then Manager of the Mill, Greg Townsend was interviewed intensively by investigators from The Met, no less than eight times in the week after 4th March. According to Mr Townsend, he felt like he was being treated as “a terror suspect”. Again, why? According to the official story, what did Mr Skripal and his daughter do there? They went in. They had a drink. They left. Big deal. Why on earth would the most intense questioning and focus be at that location then?

But thirdly, and most crucially, is the incorrect timeline put out by The Met about the Skripals’ visit to this pub. Here’s what they said:
13:40 – Sergei and Yulia arrive at the Sainsbury’s upper level car park in The Maltings
The pair go to The Mill pub in Salisbury
Approximately 14.20 – The father and daughter eat at Zizzi restaurant on Castle Street
15:35 – They leave the restaurant
This is simply wrong. They did not go to The Mill pub before Zizzis. They went to Zizzis between about 2:00pm and 2:45pm, and then on to the Mill from around 3:00pm to 3:30pm. Every single one of the original witness statements in the early days of the case confirms this, and I have also had independent corroboration locally that this was the case (see here for details). So why did The Met put out a timeline saying that the Skripals were in Zizzis between 3:00pm and 3:30pm, when in fact they were in The Mill? Unfortunately, the only conclusion I can draw from this is that it was done deliberately, with the purpose of drawing attention away from that location as being the place the Skripals visited before the bench incident.

Put that together with the oddities around the location of the poisoning of Detective Sergeant Nicholas Bailey, and it seems to me — and I admit this is highly speculative — that there was an incident prior to the bench incident, that it most probably occurred at the back of The Mill, and it was there — not the bench or the house — that Mr Bailey became contaminated. Let me stress that this is speculation, and it may well be incorrect, yet it seems to me to be the most plausible explanation for the extremely strange ambiguity surrounding Mr Bailey’s movements, the claim that he was injured as a first responder to “the initial scene”, and the bait and switch between Zizzis and The Mill given in The Met’s timeline.

I would add one further element that may hint at this, which is this extraordinary claim in an article on 6th March 2018 in The Sun (also carried in The Mail):
“As emergency crews cleared the substance left near the bench, others were called to decontaminate the hospital. First reports suggested traces of the opiate fentanyl — a synthetic toxin many times stronger than heroin — had been detected at the scene. But that was later linked to unconnected incident involving another couple coincidentally in the shopping centre.”
That really is extraordinary. Another incident, this time a Fentanyl poisoning, the first of its kind in Salisbury, on the same day, around the same time, and in the same shopping centre as a nerve agent incident. That’s about as likely as the British Army’s Chief Nurse happening to be there at that exact same moment, isn’t it? Did it really happen? I have no idea. But if it did, was this something to do with the “initial scene” — the one that saw Mr Bailey and two of his colleagues taken to hospital (here is a link to BBC article confirming that two police officers were contaminated, as well as a third member of the emergency services, who was clearly Mr Bailey)?

Questions, questions, questions. To which there must be answers, answers, answers. Unfortunately, those controlling the narrative are not about to give them any time soon, and they will no doubt continue to perpetuate the absurd, the implausible, and the impossible, rather than coming clean with the truth.

Perhaps it will take a whistleblower to leak the truth. But then who would do such a thing and who would publish it? A man who published secrets about war crimes that the US Government didn’t want revealing, is currently being treated in Belmarsh Prison and Woolwich Crown Court in much the same way that Soviet political dissidents and enemies of the state were treated back in the day. Another man who is tenaciously publishing the truth behind the OPCW’s sham investigation into the Douma chemical incident is smeared and slandered as a charlatan by those who are not fit to lick his shoes.

This is the kind of country we are becoming. This is the kind of society that those behind this riddle, wrapped in a cover up, inside a hoax, are leading us to. A national security state, where the truth is buried underneath an avalanche of deception, and where those who try to honestly get to the bottom of it are labelled enemies of the state, treated shamefully, so that others are deterred from following suit. It rather minds me of this, from one of the early church fathers, St. Anthony:
“A time is coming when men will go mad, and when they see someone who is not mad, they will attack him, saying, ‘You are mad; you are not like us.’”
It’s not the kind of society I hoped to see when I was growing up. It’s not the kind of society I hoped my children would grow up in. My guess is that it’s not even the kind of society that those who are playing these elaborate games wanted to grow up in. Yet it is what it is, and I am persuaded that those who have brought us to this point have more trouble sleeping than I do. I would urge them to consider this, before it is too late:
“For nothing is hidden that will not be made manifest, nor is anything secret that will not be known and come to light.” – Jesus Christ (Luke 8:17)

I just wanted to say thanks once again for all the many wonderful commenters and their thoughtful analysis of this case over the last couple of years. Your contributions are much appreciated. Once again, it is my intention to write about other things, and my sincere hope is that I don’t find myself writing a 3rd anniversary piece.

I also wanted to draw your attention to a new book on the subject, Skripal in Prison, by John Helmer. I regret that I would have liked to be in a position to be able to make one or two comments on the book, but unfortunately I have not had the time to read it myself yet. But given John’s pieces on the subject on his blog, I have no doubt that it will be a most interesting and enlightening read. You can get a copy of it here:

Reprinted with permission from The BlogMire.

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