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‘Toxic History’: Washington State Prepares to Sue US Navy Over Hazardous Dumping

Sputnik – January 18, 2019

Washington state Attorney General Bob Ferguson warned Thursday that he is preparing to join a pending lawsuit against the US Navy for knowingly dumping toxic metals directly into waters around the state, despite having been urged by the EPA to find another disposal method.

The lawsuit cited by Ferguson was initially filed in June 2017 by the Suquamish Tribe and nonprofit organizations Puget Soundkeeper and the Washington Environmental Council. The suit alleges that the US Navy committed multiple violations of the Clean Water Act by its decision to release toxic substances into the Sinclair Inlet, which flows into the Puget Sound, and failed to obtain the proper permits when cleaning a decommissioned aircraft carrier, the USS Independence.

Ferguson told the Seattle Times that his office decided to join the lawsuit after reviewing a report in October 2018 that revealed what toxic chemicals were in the materials that had been scraped off the Independence in January 2017. Ferguson’s letter indicates that “approximately fifty dump truck loads of solid waste” were dumped into the waters.

Those chemicals included zinc, copper, cadmium, arsenic, chromium, various other metals and polychlorinated biphenyls. “As a result, the [Environmental Protection Agency] listed the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard Complex as a Superfund site under the Comprehensive Environmental Response Compensation and Liability Act, and the federal government has spent millions of dollars remediating the sediments at the site,” the AG’s notice explains.

It should be noted that Washington State houses the US Navy’s Puget Sound Naval Shipyard, which is just one of three Naval Inactive Ship Maintenance Facilities in the US that work with decommissioned vessels.

According to Ferguson’s letter, Navy officials took no precautions to contain the waste, discharging it directly into the Sinclair Inlet, despite having been urged by the EPA to use a dry dock to perform the cleaning.

As such, the letter says, the Navy is in direct violation of the Clean Water Act and the Washington State Water Pollution Control Act and is creating an “imminent and substantial endangerment to the environment under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA).”

“We ask that the Navy remedy its ongoing violations of the [Clean Water Act] and Washington law, and abate the imminent and substantial endangerment under RCRA, at the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard by removing from Sinclair Inlet the debris from the ex-Independence and taking any other action necessary to stop and remediate the ongoing discharge of pollutants and related environmental harm caused by the Navy’s in-water hull cleaning activities,” the letter states, noting that should naval officials fail to meet Ferguson’s demands within the next 60 days, his office will have no other option than to join the Puget Soundkeeper Alliance, et al. v. US Navy, et al. case.Ferguson, who established the state’s Counsel for Environmental Protection in 2016, told the Seattle Times earlier this week that “there’s more trouble ahead,” as another ship, the supercarrier USS Kitty Hawk, is expected to undergo a similar cleaning process at the Puget Sound facility.

But this isn’t the only example of the US military playing fast and loose with environmental regulations, Kevin Kamps, Beyond Nuclear’s radioactive waste specialist, told Sputnik Friday. “There are countless examples of the US military unleashing environmental destruction,” he said, giving as an example the housing development built on radioactive, contaminated soil in California’s old Hunters Point Naval Shipyard.

“The US Navy caused the radioactive contamination,” Kamps said. “Then a contractor hired during the supposed clean up, Tetra Tech, falsified testing samples, claiming the soils were cleaned up, when they were not.”

“This toxic history includes illegal and unethical dumping as has happened repeatedly in Puget Sound. Similarly, the US military dumped vast amounts of munitions, toxins and perhaps even radioactive waste into Lake Superior, after World War II,” he continued.

Other examples of the US’ environmental destruction include the Nevada Test Site, depleted uranium test firings in Vieques, Puerto Rico, and Jefferson Proving Ground in Ohio, where Kamps says government activities have resulted in “billions of dollars of clean up costs that may never be carried out.”

“Along the lines of the Washington State attorney general’s shock, such practices, incredibly, are not a thing of the past — they are still going on. They must stop, or tremendous damage to public health, safety and the environment will continue into the future, instead of being a tragic thing of the past.”

And it’s not just chemical dumping from the Navy’s facilities. A 2016 study carried out by NOAA Fisheries’ Northwest Fisheries Science Center and the University of Washington found traces of soaps, industrial chemicals, the antidepressant Prozac and metformin, a diabetic medication, in the Puget Sound. Upon examining fish native to the Puget Sound, researchers found traces of such compounds within their tissue.

See also:

Nuclear Waste Shipments Expose Populations to Toxic Radiation

US Shores Up Toxic Waste Sites in Florida Ahead of Hurricane Irma – Environmental Agency

January 18, 2019 Posted by | Deception, Environmentalism, Timeless or most popular | , | Leave a comment

A Convenient Killing of US Troops in Syria

By Finian CUNNINGHAM | Strategic Culture Foundation | 18.01.2019

With unseemly haste, US news media leapt on the killing of four American military personnel in Syria as a way to undermine President Donald Trump’s plan to withdraw troops from that country.

The deadly attack in the northern city of Manbij, on the west bank of the Euphrates River, was reported to have been carried out by a suicide bomber. The Islamic State (ISIS) terror group reportedly claimed responsibility, but the group routinely makes such claims which often turn out to be false.

The American military personnel were said to be on a routine patrol of Manbij where US forces have been backing Kurdish militants in a purported campaign against ISIS and other terror groups.

An explosion at a restaurant resulted in two US troops and two Pentagon civilian officials being killed, along with more than a dozen other victims. Three other US military persons were among those injured.

US media highlighted the bombing as the biggest single death toll of American forces in Syria since they began operations in the country nearly four years ago.

The US and Kurdish militia have been in control of Manbij for over two years. It is one of the main sites from where American troops are to withdraw under Trump’s exit plan, which he announced on December 19.

Following the bombing, the New York Times headlined: “ISIS Attack in Syria Kills 4 Americans, Raising Worries about Troop Withdrawal”. The report goes on, “the news prompted calls from Republicans and Democrats for President Trump to reconsider his plans to withdraw troops from the country.”

A more pointed headline in The Washington Post was: “Killing of 4 Americans in Syria Throws Spotlight on Trump’s Policy”.

The Post editorialized, “the bombing showed that [ISIS] is likely to be a force to be reckoned with in Syria for the foreseeable future.” It quoted politicians in Washington claiming the “bombing deaths… were a direct result of a foolish and abrupt departure announcement [by Trump], and made the case for staying.”

Democrat Senator Jack Reed, who sits on the Senate Armed Forces Committee, said: “From the beginning, I thought the president was wrong [in ordering the withdrawal]. It was a strategic mistake for the whole region.”

With macabre smugness, anti-Trump politicians and news media appeared to exploit the death of US troops in Manbij to score points against Trump.

The president’s claims made just before Christmas of having defeated ISIS were widely replayed following the Manbij attack this week by way of ridiculing Trump’s order to pullout US troops from Syria.

Nevertheless, despite the deaths, Trump and his Vice President Mike Pence stated they were still committed to bring the 2,000 or so US troops home. Some military figures also went on US media to defend Trump’s pullout plan in spite of the terror attack in Manbij.

There clearly is a serious division in Washington over Trump’s policy on Syria. For Democrats and supportive media outlets, anything Trump does is to be opposed. But there are also elements within the military and intelligence nexus which are implacably against, what they see as, his “capitulation to Russia and Iran” in Syria. That was partly why his Defense Secretary James Mattis resigned days after Trump made his announced withdrawal at the end of last month.

Having invested years and money in regime-change machinations in Syria, there are bound to be US military and intelligence cabals which are resistant to Trump’s move to pack up. Not that Trump’s move portends a peace dividend for the region. It is more a “tactical change” for how US imperialism operates in the Middle East, as his Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in Cairo last week.

That is why Trump’s order to take troops out of Syria may not be a clear-cut withdrawal. His National Security adviser John Bolton on a tour of the Middle East last week has already tried to undermine Trump by attaching all sorts of vague conditions to the troop pullout. Bolton and Pompeo have talked about the need to ensure the total defeat of ISIS and of the countering of Iranian presence in Syria.

This brings up the question of who may have carried out the bombing in Manbij? Was it really a suicide bomber? Was it really ISIS? Several observers have pointed out that ISIS have not had any presence in Manbij for the past two years since the Americans and Kurds took control of the city.

As always, the key question arises: who stands to benefit from the killing of the American troops? The scale of the attack suggests it was carried out with a sharp political message intended for Trump.

One potential beneficiary are the Kurdish militants who are being abandoned by the putative US withdrawal. Without their American sponsor on the ground, the Kurds are in danger of Turkish forces launching cross-border operations to wipe them out, as Ankara has vowed to do. A Machiavellian Kurdish calculation could be to “disprove” Trump about “ISIS being defeated”, and that US forces are needed to prevent any resurgence of the terror group in Manbij and northeast Syria.

Another sinister player is the CIA or some other element of US military intelligence. It is certainly not beyond the realm of plausibility that the CIA could facilitate such an atrocity against American personnel in order to discredit Trump’s withdrawal plan.

Certainly, the way the anti-Trump media in the US reacted with such alacrity and concerted talking points suggests there was something a bit too convenient about the massacre.

It would in fact be naive to not suspect that the CIA could have pulled off such a false flag in Manbij. As in 1950s Vietnam, as told by Graham Greene in ‘The Quiet American’, the CIA have been doing such dirty tricks with bombing atrocities and assassinations for decades in order to precipitate wars in foreign countries that the agency calculates are in America’s geopolitical interests.

January 18, 2019 Posted by | False Flag Terrorism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Deception | , , , , | Leave a comment

The National Security Agency Is A Criminal Organization

By Paul Craig Roberts | Institute For Political Economy | January 17, 2019

Years before Edward Snowden provided documented proof that the National Security Agency was really a national insecurity agency as it was violating law and the US Constitution and spying indiscriminately on American citizens, William Binney, who designed and developed the NSA spy program revealed the illegal and unconstitutional spying. Binney turned whistleblower, because NSA was using the program to spy on Americans. As Binney was well known to the US Congress, he did not think he needed any NSA document to make his case. But what he found out was “Congress would never hear me because then they’d lose plausible deniability. That was really their key. They needed to have plausible deniability so they can continue this massive spying program because it gave them power over everybody in the world. Even the members of Congress had power against others [in Congress]; they had power on judges on the Supreme Court, the federal judges, all of them. That’s why they’re so afraid. Everybody’s afraid because all this data that’s about them, the central agencies — the intelligence agencies — they have it. And that’s why Senator Schumer warned President Trump earlier, a few months ago, that he shouldn’t attack the intelligence community because they’ve got six ways to Sunday to come at you. That’s because it’s like J. Edgar Hoover on super steroids. . . . it’s leverage against every member of parliament and every government in the world.”

To prevent whistle-blowing, NSA has “a program now called ‘see something, say something’ about your fellow workers. That’s what the Stasi did. That’s why I call [NSA] the new New Stasi Agency. They’re picking up all the techniques from the Stasi and the KGB and the Gestapo and the SS. They just aren’t getting violent yet that we know of — internally in the US, outside is another story.”

As Binney had no documents to give to the media, blowing the whistle had no consequence for NSA. This is the reason that Snowden released the documents that proved NSA to be violating both law and the Constitution, but the corrupt US media focused blame on Snowden as a “traitor” and not on NSA for its violations.

Whistleblowers are protected by federal law. Regardless, the corrupt US government tried to prosecute Binney for speaking out, but as he had taken no classified document, a case could not be fabricated against him.

Binney blames the NSA’s law-breaking on Dick “Darth” Cheney. He says NSA’s violations of law and Constitution are so extreme that they would have to have been cleared at the top of the government.

Binney describes the spy network, explains that it was supposed to operate only against foreign enemies, and that using it for universal spying so overloads the system with data that the system fails to discover many terrorist activities.

Apparently, the National Security Agency values being able to blackmail citizens and members of government at home and abroad more than preventing terrorist attacks.

Unfortunately for Americans, there are many Americans who blindly trust the government and provide the means, the misuse of which is used to enslave us. A large percentage of the work in science and technology serves not to free people but to enslave them. By now there is no excuse for scientists and engineers not to know this. Yet they persist in their construction of the means to destroy liberty.

January 17, 2019 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Corruption, Deception, Timeless or most popular | , , | 1 Comment

FISA shocker: DOJ official warned Steele dossier was connected to Clinton, might be biased

By John Solomon | The Hill | January 16, 2019

When the annals of mistakes and abuses in the FBI’s Russia investigation are finally written, Bruce Ohr almost certainly will be the No. 1 witness, according to my sources.

The then-No. 4 Department of Justice (DOJ) official briefed both senior FBI and DOJ officials in summer 2016 about Christopher Steele’s Russia dossier, explicitly cautioning that the British intelligence operative’s work was opposition research connected to Hillary Clinton’s campaign and might be biased.

Ohr’s briefings, in July and August 2016, included the deputy director of the FBI, a top lawyer for then-Attorney General Loretta Lynch and a Justice official who later would become the top deputy to special counsel Robert Mueller.

At the time, Ohr was the associate attorney general. Yet his warnings about political bias were pointedly omitted weeks later from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant that the FBI obtained from a federal court, granting it permission to spy on whether the Trump campaign was colluding with Russia to hijack the 2016 presidential election.

Ohr’s activities, chronicled in handwritten notes and congressional testimony I gleaned from sources, provide the most damning evidence to date that FBI and DOJ officials may have misled federal judges in October 2016 in their zeal to obtain the warrant targeting Trump adviser Carter Page just weeks before Election Day.

They also contradict a key argument that House Democrats have made in their formal intelligence conclusions about the Russia case.

Since it was disclosed last year that Steele’s dossier formed a central piece of evidence supporting the FISA warrant, Justice and FBI officials have been vague about exactly when they learned that Steele’s work was paid for by the law firm representing the Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee (DNC).

A redacted version of the FISA application released last year shows the FBI did not mention any connection to the DNC or Clinton. Rather, it referred to Steele as a reliable source in past criminal investigations who was hired by a person working for a U.S. law firm to conduct research on Trump and Russia.

The FBI claimed it was “unaware of any derogatory information” about Steele, that Steele was “never advised … as to the motivation behind the research” but that the FBI  “speculates” that those who hired Steele were “likely looking for information to discredit” Trump’s campaign.

Yet, in testimony last summer to congressional investigators, Ohr revealed the FBI and Justice lawyers had no need to speculate: He explicitly warned them in a series of contacts, beginning July 31, 2016, that Steele expressed biased against Trump and was working on a project connected to the Clinton campaign.Ohr had firsthand knowledge about the motive and the client: He had just met with Steele on July 30, 2016, and Ohr’s wife, Nellie, worked for Fusion GPS, the same firm employing Steele.

“I certainly told the FBI that Fusion GPS was working with, doing opposition research on Donald Trump,” Ohr told congressional investigators, adding that he warned the FBI that Steele expressed bias during their conversations.

“I provided information to the FBI when I thought Christopher Steele was, as I said, desperate that Trump not be elected,” he added. “So, yes, of course I provided that to the FBI.”

When pressed why he would offer that information to the FBI, Ohr answered: “In case there might be any kind of bias or anything like that.” He added later, “So when I provided it to the FBI, I tried to be clear that this is source information, I don’t know how reliable it is. You’re going to have to check it out and be aware.”

Ohr went further, saying he disclosed to FBI agents that his wife and Steele were working for the same firm and that it was conducting the Trump-Russia research project at the behest of Trump’s Democratic rival, the Clinton campaign.

“These guys were hired by somebody relating to, who’s related to the Clinton campaign and be aware,” Ohr told Congress, explaining what he warned the bureau.

Perkins Coie, the law firm that represented both the DNC and the Clinton campaign during the 2016 election, belatedly admitted it paid Fusion GPS for Steele’s work on behalf of the candidate and party and disguised the payments as legal bills when, in fact, it was opposition research.

When asked if he knew of any connection between the Steele dossier and the DNC, Ohr responded that he believed the project was really connected to the Clinton campaign.

“I didn’t know they were employed by the DNC but I certainly said yes that they were working for, you know, they were somehow working, associated with the Clinton campaign,” he answered.

“I also told the FBI that my wife worked for Fusion GPS or was a contractor for GPS, Fusion GPS.”

Ohr divulged his first contact with the FBI was on July 31, 2016, when he reached out to then-Deputy Director Andrew McCabe and FBI attorney Lisa Page. He then was referred to the agents working Russia counterintelligence, including Peter Strzok, the now-fired agent who played a central role in starting the Trump collusion probe.

But Ohr’s contacts about the Steele dossier weren’t limited to the FBI. He said in August 2016 — nearly two months before the FISA warrant was issued — that he was asked to conduct a briefing for senior Justice officials.

Those he briefed included Andrew Weissmann, then the head of DOJ’s fraud section; Bruce Swartz, longtime head of DOJ’s international operations, and Zainab Ahmad, an accomplished terrorism prosecutor who, at the time, was assigned to work with Lynch as a senior counselor.

Ahmad and Weissmann would go on to work for Mueller, the special prosecutor overseeing the Russia probe.

Ohr’s extensive testimony also undercuts one argument that House Democrats sought to make last year.

When Republicans, in early 2018, first questioned Ohr’s connections to Steele, Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee sought to minimize the connection, insisting he only worked as an informer for the FBI after Steele was fired by the FBI in November 2016.

The memo from Rep. Adam Schiff’s (D-Calif.) team claimed that Ohr’s contacts with the FBI only began “weeks after the election and more than a month after the Court approved the initial FISA application.”

But Ohr’s testimony now debunks that claim, making clear he started talking to FBI and DOJ officials well before the FISA warrant or election had occurred.

And his detailed answers provide a damning rebuttal to the FBI’s portrayal of the Steele material.

In fact, the FBI did have derogatory information on Steele: Ohr explicitly told the FBI that Steele was desperate to defeat the man he was investigating and was biased.

And the FBI knew the motive of the client and did not have to speculate: Ohr told agents the Democratic nominee’s campaign was connected to the research designed to harm Trump’s election chances.

Such omissions are, by definition, an abuse of the FISA system.

Don’t take my word for it. Fired FBI Director James Comey acknowledged it himself when he testified last month that the FISA court relies on an honor system, in which the FBI is expected to divulge exculpatory evidence to the judges.

“We certainly consider it our obligation, because of our trust relationship with federal judges, to present evidence that would paint a materially different picture of what we’re presenting,” Comey testified on Dec. 7, 2018. “You want to present to the judge reviewing your application a complete picture of the evidence, both its flaws and its strengths.”

Comey claims he didn’t know about Ohr’s contacts with Steele, even though his top deputy, McCabe, got the first contact.

But none of that absolves his FBI, or the DOJ for that matter, from failing to divulge essential and exculpatory information from Ohr to the FISA court.

John Solomon is an award-winning investigative journalist whose work over the years has exposed U.S. and FBI intelligence failures before the Sept. 11 attacks, federal scientists’ misuse of foster children and veterans in drug experiments, and numerous cases of political corruption. He is The Hill’s executive vice president for video.

January 17, 2019 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Deception, Timeless or most popular | , , , | Leave a comment

The Startling Truth About Herbert Hoover’s Role In Prolonging World War One

Corbett Report Extras | January 15, 2019

Today we are joined once again by Gerry Docherty, co-author with Jim MacGregor of Hidden History: The Secret Origins of the First World War and Prolonging the Agony: How the Anglo-American Establishment Deliberately Extended WWI. In this conversation we cover the remarkable suppressed history of Herbert Hoover’s role in prolonging the agony of World War One, including his stewardship of the American relief of Belgium in the early part of the war and overseeing the removal of valuable historical documents from Europe after the war.

Watch this video on BitChute / BitTube / DTube / YouTube or Download the mp4

SHOW NOTES:

Hidden History blog and website

Hidden History: The Secret Origins of the First World War

Prolonging the Agony: How the Anglo-American Establishment Deliberately Extended WWI

The WWI Conspiracy

Interview 1405 – Gerry Docherty on the Hidden History of WWI

January 16, 2019 Posted by | War Crimes, Corruption, Video, Deception, Timeless or most popular | , , | Leave a comment

The moral travesty of Israel seeking Arab, Iranian money for its alleged Nakba

By Ramzy Baroud | Ma’an | January 15, 2019

The game is afoot. Israel, believe it or not, is demanding that seven Arab countries and Iran pay $250 billion as compensation for what it claims was the forceful exodus of Jews from Arab countries during the late 1940s.

The events that Israel is citing allegedly occurred at a time when Zionist Jewish militias were actively uprooting nearly one million Palestinian Arabs and systematically destroying their homes, villages and towns throughout Palestine.

The Israeli announcement, which reportedly followed “18 months of secret research” conducted by the Israeli government’s Ministry of Social Equality, should not be filed under the ever-expanding folder of shameless Israeli misrepresentations of history.

It is part of a calculated effort by the Israeli government, and namely by Minister Gila Gamliel, to create a counter-narrative to the rightful demand for the ‘Right of Return’ for Palestinian refugees ethnically cleansed by Jewish militias between 1947-1948.

But there is a reason behind the Israeli urgency to reveal such questionable research: the relentless US-Israeli attempt in the last two years to dismiss the rights of Palestinian refugee rights, to question their numbers and to marginalize their grievances. It is all part and parcel of the ongoing plot disguised as the ‘Deal of the Century’, with the clear aim of removing from the table all major issues that are central to the Palestinian struggle for freedom.

“The time has come to correct the historic injustice of the pogroms (against Jews) in seven Arab countries and Iran, and to restore, to hundreds of thousands of Jews who lost their property, what is rightfully theirs,” said Gamliel.

The language – “.. to correct the historic injustice” – is no different from language used by Palestinians who have for 70 years and counting been demanding the restoration of their rights per United Nations Resolution 194.

The deliberate conflating between the Palestinian narrative and the Zionist narrative is aimed at creating parallels, with the hope that a future political agreement would resolve to having both grievances cancel each other out.

Contrary to what Israeli historians want us to believe, there was no mass exodus of Jews from Arab countries and Iran, but rather a massive campaign orchestrated by Zionist leaders at the time to replace the Palestine Arab population with Jewish immigrants from all over the world. The ways through which such a mission was achieved often involved violent Zionist plots – especially in Iraq.

In fact, the call on Jews to gather in Israel from all corners of the world remains the rally cry for Israeli leaders and their Christian Evangelical supporters – the former wants to ensure a Jewish majority in the state, while the latter is seeking to fulfill a biblical condition for their long-awaited Armageddon.

To hold Arabs and Iran responsible for this bizarre and irresponsible behavior is a transgression on the true history in which neither Gamliel nor her ministry are interested.

On the other hand, and unlike what Israeli military historians often claim, the ethnic cleansing of Palestine in 1947- 48 (and the subsequent purges of the native population that followed in 1967) was a premeditated act of ethnic cleansing and genocide. It has been part of a long-drawn and carefully calculated campaign that, from the very start, served as the main strategy at the heart of the Zionist movement’s ‘vision’ for the Palestinian people.

“We must expel the Arabs and take their place,” wrote Israel’s founder, military leader and first prime minister, David Ben Gurion in a letter to his son, Amos in October 5, 1937. That was over a decade before Plan D – which saw the destruction of the Palestinian homeland at the hands of Ben Gurion’s militias – went into effect.

Palestine “contains vast colonization potential,” he also wrote, “which the Arabs neither need nor are qualified to exploit.”

This clear declaration of a colonial project in Palestine, communicated with the same kind of unmistakable racist insinuations and language that accompanied all western colonial experiences throughout the centuries was not unique to Ben Gurion. He was merely paraphrasing what was, by then, understood to be the crux of the Zionist enterprise in Palestine at the time.

As Palestinian professor Nur Masalha concluded in his book, the ‘Expulsion of the Palestinians’, the idea of the ‘transfer’ – the Zionist term for “ethnic cleansing’ of the Palestinian people – was, and remains, fundamental in the realization of Zionist ambitions in Palestine.

Palestinian Arab “villages inside the Jewish state that resist ‘should be destroyed .. and their inhabitants expelled beyond the borders of the Jewish state,” Masalha wrote quoting the ‘History of the Haganah’ by Yehuda Slutsky. .

What this meant in practice, as delineated by Palestinian historian, Walid Khalidi was the joint targeting by various Jewish militias to systematically attack all population centers in Palestine, without exception.

“By the end of April (1948), the combined Haganah-Irgun offensive had completely encircled (the Palestinian city of) Jaffa, forcing most of the remaining civilians to flee by sea to Gaza or Egypt; many drowned in the process, ” Khalidi wrote in ‘Before Their Diaspora’.

This tragedy has eventually grown to affect all Palestinians, everywhere within the borders of their historic homeland. Tens of thousands of refugees joined up with hundreds of thousands more at various dusty trails throughout the country, growing in numbers as they walked further, to finally pitch their tents in areas that, then were meant to be ‘temporary’ refugee encampments. Alas, these became the Palestinian refugee camps of today, starting some 70 years ago.

None of this was accidental. The determination of the early Zionists to establish a ‘national home’ for Jews at the expense of the country’s Palestinian Arab nation was communicated, openly, clearly and repeatedly throughout the formation of early Zionist thoughts, and the translation of those well-articulated ideas into physical reality.

70 years have passed since the Nakba’ – the ‘Catastrophe’ of 1948 – and neither Israel took responsibility for its action, nor Palestinian refugees received any measure of justice, however small or symbolic.

For Israel to be seeking compensation from Arab countries and Iran is a moral travesty, especially as Palestinians refugees continue to languish in refugee camps across Palestine and the Middle East.

Yes, indeed “the time has come to correct the historic injustice,” not of Israel’s alleged ‘pogroms’ carried out by Arabs and Iranians, but the real and most tragic destruction of Palestine and its people.

January 15, 2019 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Deception | , , , | 3 Comments

EU approval of glyphosate weed killer was based on ‘plagiarized’ Monsanto studies, report finds

RT | January 15, 2019

EU regulators based a decision to relicense the controversial glyphosate-based Monsanto weed-killer on an assessment which was heavily plagiarized from agri-chemical industry reports, a cross party group of MEPs has revealed.

The MEPs commissioned the investigation after the Guardian reported that Germany’s Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR) had copy-and-pasted tracts from Monsanto studies into its safety assessment for the weed killer. The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) then based its recommendation that glyphosate was safe based on that very report.

The results of the investigation were published just hours before a parliamentary vote on tightening scrutiny on the approval of pesticides. The cross-party report said that BfR had given the “deliberate pretence” of independent assessment, but in reality was “only echoing the industry applicants’ assessment.”

The scale of plagiarism was “extremely alarming” according to Green MEP Molly Scott Cato. The study found that more than 50 percent of the chapters were plagiarized, including whole pages of text.

Bayer, which bought Monsanto for $63 billion last year, is dealing with more than 9,300 lawsuits from people claiming that the company’s glyphosate-based weed killers caused their cancers. The World Health Organization has classified glyphosate as a probable human carcinogen.

Adding to the company’s woes, a French court on Tuesday decided to cancel the authorization to market RoundUp Pro 360, a Monsanto weed killer product which contains glyphosate. Filings showed that regional court in Lyon ruled to cancel the market authorization for the product, saying the approval, which had been granted by French environment agency ANSES in 2017, had not taken potential health risks into consideration.

The court said that “scientific studies and animal experiments” showed that RoundUp Pro 360 is a “potentially carcinogenic product for humans, suspected of being toxic for human reproduction and for aquatic organisms.” ANSES has not yet commented on the ruling. French President Emmanuel Macron had previously pledged to outlaw it completely in France by 2021.

Bayer has defended the product, however, citing other regulatory rulings which found glyphosate to be safe and the company is appealing a court decision in the US which awarded $78 million in damages to a plaintiff in California.

In 2018, two studies showed that the best-selling herbicide was showing up in food products for both humans and animals. Researchers at Cornell University found the substance in all 18 dog and cat food brands surveyed — including one product which was certified as GMO-free.

The other study found glyphosate in all oat-based cereals and foods tested. One variant of Quaker Oatmeal Squares, for example, contained nearly 18 times the levels of glyphosate considered acceptable.

Glyphosate is off-patent and also marketed by dozens of other companies around the world.

January 15, 2019 Posted by | Deception, Science and Pseudo-Science | | Leave a comment

Integrity Initiative: By all means smear & attack, but at least be honest about it

By Simon Rite | RT | January 13, 2019

We’ve all met those people who describe themselves as laid back, when in reality they’re just one loud noise from a mouth frothing breakdown. So when something describes itself as having integrity, be wary.

Enter the Integrity Initiative (II), Britain’s very own government funded influence network which is currently in the process of having its underpants revealed to the world. There’s no doubting it’s an initiative, the jury’s out on the other bit. Some of the people behind it are alleged former spies (can you be a former spy?), a calling not often linked to integrity.

There’s a good chance you may not know much about the Integrity Initiative, the mainstream media is not exactly straining to tell you about it. Labour MP Chris Williamson suggests that’s because a number of mainstream journalists have signed up to work with it.

The only time II briefly attracted the attention of the mainstream world was when it became clear it had been pushing conspiracies about Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn’s links to the Kremlin. That’s not a good look for an organization which receives cash from the Foreign Office.

It describes itself as non-partisan, but then as we’ve discussed, it also has “Integrity” in the title. Maybe it can get away with it, always worth a try I suppose. It also claims to be “combating propaganda and disinformation,” but as you’ll see for yourself on its Twitter account, it’s simply a stream of invective and criticism about Russia. If you want to spend cash smearing an entire nation, fine, fill your boots, but don’t then act all moral about it.

Integrity Initiative deals in propaganda, mainly against Russia, and if anyone involved tries to deny that, then they’ve clearly been drinking their own Kool Aid. Of course, it defends itself by saying it’s on the front line of the fight against so-called Russian disinformation, which is a pretty wide category these days. But it doesn’t matter if it’s propaganda you agree with or disagree with, it’s still propaganda.

One of its main aims is to put together what it calls ‘clusters’ of journalists, writers and the like who are sympathetic to the cause. If you’ve been paying attention, you won’t be surprised to find out who are making up those clusters.

Some of those journalists who have had their links revealed are carefully backtracking. One interesting form of mea culpa from some of them is to admit that while they did do some work for II, they didn’t get paid much to do it, which is a curious defense if you think about it. If you’re involved in something you might feel the need to defend in the future, at least make sure you getting paid! About £200 for a talk or an article seems to be the going rate if you’re interested.

Good luck to anyone signing up to work with II, we’ve all got mortgages to pay, there’s no judgement from me, but at least take responsibility for it. And if you really didn’t know you were engaging in propaganda, then perhaps a period of self-reflection is in order.

Guardian journalist James Ball, for example, wrote a column in which he came clean on his links to II (he gave a training talk for about 225 quid) but there was no real self-reflection. The headline “When free societies copy Russian media tactics, there’s only one winner” is indicative of the myopia which drives the movement against so-called Russian disinformation. Even when he is literally caught up in a Western government funded propaganda effort, he somehow still manages to reflect it back on Russia. Moscow made me do it!

Ball goes on to lament the hacking of Integrity Initiative in a newspaper which revelled in publishing juicy stories from WikiLeaks.

He even analyses the events around the Salisbury poisoning by saying: “Russian-backed outlets and supporters threw question after question to cast doubt on the official narrative.”

There we have it, the biggest crime of all – casting doubt on the official narrative.

January 14, 2019 Posted by | Deception, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Russophobia | , , | Leave a comment

Who or What Brought Down Dag Hammarskjöld?

Ndola, Zambia, showing the roof of the memorial museum and Dag Hammarskjöld’s DC-6 as it would have appeared coming through the trees onto the crash site.
By Joseph Majerle III – Matthew Stevenson | CounterPunch | January 11, 2019

Background to the Crash

A plane carrying the Secretary General of the United Nations, Dag Hammarskjöld, crashed while approaching the Ndola (Zambia) airport on September 18, 1961. The exact time of the crash is unknown, although it was around midnight. The DC-6, named Albertina, had flown a circuitous route from Kinshasa, the capital of the Congo, to Ndola, a large town in what was then Northern Rhodesia. The purpose of the flight was to bring Secretary Hammarskjöld to a meeting with Moise Tshombe, the president of the breakaway republic of Katanga, in which many western (British, French, Belgian and American) investors had large stakes in various mineral deposits.

Those corporate interests had supported independence for Katanga after the Congolese leadership, notably Prime Minister Patrice Lumumba, had advocated closer relations with the Communist bloc. (Lumumba, himself, was assassinated in January 1961, in what some researchers now believe was part of a Central Intelligence Agency plot to get rid of him.)

For his part, Hammarskjöld believed that the Congo ought to remain one country, and toward that end he was flying to Ndola (just over the border of Northern Rhodesia from Katanga) to have ceasefire talks with Tshombe, in the hope of mediating a settlement to the conflict. Instead, his plane crashed in the darkness, killing fifteen of the sixteen passengers and crew aboard the DC-6. One security officer for Hammarskjöld survived for about eight days.

Since the fatal crash, various investigative instruments, including UN committees and independent aviation groups in the United Kingdom and Sweden, have looked into the cause of the crash. The initial investigation, conducted by colonial authorities in 1961, concluded that the pilots of the DC-6 (an experienced Swedish crew) had misjudged the night landing on an unfamiliar approach and flew the plane into the ground. A UN inquiry at the same time, however, failed to reach the same conclusion, although it was at a loss to explain the crash.

More recent inquiries, including one chaired by Stephen Sedley and with Hans Corell and Richard Goldstone as co-panellists, have come to more nuanced conclusions, saying that earlier investigators lacked a true picture of the situation on the ground and in the air around Ndola that night to come to definitive conclusion about what happened to the Albertina. It has led to new inquiry, originally supported by then Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon and approved by the UN Security Council, to reopen the investigation under the direction of the former chief justice of Tanzania, Mohamed Chande Othman, although for the moment the budget approved for such an exercise is little more than $300,000 (and the information needed is literally all over the world). 

All of the recent re-examinations of the crash have concluded that the first conclusions of pilot error might well be in inaccurate. For example, the 2013 UN Hammarskjöld Commission, for example, concluded: “There is persuasive evidence that the aircraft was subjected to some form of attack or threat as it circled to land at Ndola, which was by then widely known to be its destination.” The 2017 report of Judge Othman concludes:

Based on the totality of the information that we have at hand, it appears plausible that an external attack or threat may have been a cause of the crash, whether by way of a direct attack causing SE-BDY to crash or by causing a momentary distraction of the pilots. Such a distraction need only have taken away the pilots’ attention for a matter of seconds at the critical point at which they were in their descent to have been potentially fatal. There is a significant amount of evidence from eyewitnesses that they observed more than one aircraft in the air, that the other aircraft may have been a jet, that SE-BDY was on fire before it crashed, and/or that SE-BDY was fired upon or otherwise actively engaged by another aircraft. In its totality, this evidence is not easily dismissed. 

Both reports cite evidence that British, American, French, South African, or Belgian governments might hold but which remain unreleased, and they urge its release for the purpose of understanding exactly what happened to Hammarskjöld’s plane.

On November 8, 2018, when Judge Othman last updated the UN on the progress of his investigation, he concluded (with some frustration): “… the fact that certain Member States have not responded to repeated requests in 2018… or to engage with this process at all, has a crucial bearing on the success or failure on the full implementation of the above General Assembly resolution.”

It is where this case has gone—from the crash zone outside Ndola to the files of the great powers—but many countries, notably the United States and South Africa, have refused to cooperate or done so grudgingly.

* * *

In addition to the various international investigations of the crash, a professor at the University of London’s Institute of Commonwealth Studies, Dr. Susan Williams, has published a book about what could have happened to Hammarskjöld’s plane. The title of the book is Who Killed Hammarskjöld? The UN, the Cold War and White Supremacy in Africa, and it was originally published in 2011, laying the ground for the later UN inquiries.

In the book Dr. Williams lays out the facts of the plane crash and outlines various theories—including pilot error of the kind imagined after the plane went down—that could explain the crash. She also talks about the possibility that French or Belgian mercenaries had access that night to trainer Fouga Magister jets or other attack aircraft, and that one or several of those planes might have shot at SE-BDY or tried to force the Albertinato the ground (perhaps by shining spot lights into the cockpit or by dropping flash bombs). She examines the case for pilot error, noting that the pilots had flown a long way across the world, beginning on September 12, 1961, when they picked up the Secretary General in New York City). She discusses the possibility that the pilots mis-programmed the altimeter on the DC-6 or that someone placed a bomb on the doomed flight.

Dr. Williams also examines theories that have speculated on possible CIA interference with the Hammarskjöld mission, making the point that the anti-communist CIA had strong vested interests in wanting his African diplomacy to fail. Dr. Williams ends her book strongly hinting that her belief is that western mercenaries were more likely than pilot error to have brought down the Hammarskjöld plane, and she outlines many incongruent aspects of the fatal night in Ndola, such as the closure of the local airport (even though it was expecting the Hammarskjöld plane) and the local witnesses on the ground spoke about hearing or seeing a large flash and bang before the “big plane” came down.  

The Williams book is not a polemic for any one theory about the Hammarskjöld plane crash. Instead, as a serious academic, she prefers to indicate the range of possible fates for the flight and to leave it to the reader to come to his or her own conclusions.

* * *

In my case, after reading the Williams book in 2017, I decided to visit the Hammarskjöld crash site outside Ndola and to compare what I would see and hear there on the ground with the words in the book. I had been planning for some time to visit Africa and to write about it, but having the Williams book in hand gave my visit to Zambia a direction and purpose, even though I am not an air-crash investigator or even a licensed pilot. Still, I decided it would be easier to read the many Hammarskjöld reports if I could visualize how far from the airport the plane had crashed and what local residents were saying on the ground about the plane.

Given the vagaries of African travel, I was not able to spend as much time on the ground in Ndola as I had planned. My train, from Dar es Salaam to the Zambian city of Kapiri Mposhi, was three days late, and I had other appointments in southern Africa, which made it hard to spend more than a day in Ndola. Nevertheless, I did get to the crash site, and there I met with some local investigators and museum officials, all of whom had their own ideas about what might have happened to the Albertina. (Most dismiss out of hand that pilot error was the cause.)

In particular, I learned that one local researcher had spoken with more than twenty eyewitnesses to the crash. Many of them were convinced that several smaller planes had swarmed around the larger DC-6 on its landing approach and that, prior to the crash, many people living in the bush near the crash site saw large flashes of light, consistent with the dropping of a bomb or bombs onto the Albertina. But because these witnesses were African natives of the area, their testimony was largely ignored by colonial authorities in Northern Rhodesia when in fall 1961 the first inquiry was held.

For my part, I came away from the crash site unable to believe that Hammarskjöld’s experienced Swedish crew had simply flown the Albertina into the ground. Maybe if the landscape of the crash site had been mountainous or even hilly, I could have imagined a sophisticated group of pilots—at night in Africa—making some fundamental errors of navigation. But two things made me think otherwise. First, the terrain around the crash site, while not a completely flat plain, is devoid of any serious hills. All I saw as I drove up to the crash site in a taxi and as I walked around the memorial were open fields and small clusters of forest land, none of which were very dense. The Albertina did not crash into the jungle or a mountain; it came down in the outskirts of Ndola where now there is open farmland that is part of a broad African plain.  

Second, I doubted that the Swedish pilots misread the altitude of the plane, especially on a clear night. These were professional pilots, and that’s a rookie mistake. Nevertheless, early investigators in Northern Rhodesia concluded that the Albertina was the victim of what in the airline world is called Controlled Flight Into Terrain (CFIT). But standing at the somber Ndola memorial to the lost flight, I came to the conclusion that something other than pilot error had driven the plane into the ground on that fateful evening. To me it felt like an ambush.

I also concluded, while poking around the memorial in Ndola, that my brother-in-law, Joseph Majerle III, is the one person I know who could make sense of the technical details in the Williams book and in some of the many Hammarskjöld reports. Joe, as I call him, works in aviation in Alaska, and in his long career he has visited many crash sites and repaired many damaged planes. He is also a voracious reader of history, especially about aviation matters. Joe has also spent much of his adult life talking with other pilots about various aircraft and their deficiencies. If anyone could help me sort out the complexities of the Ndola crash, it would be Joe, and shortly after I got back from Africa, I mailed him a copy of the Williams book.

Joe read the book twice, took ample notes, discussed his thinking with other pilots in Alaska (some of whom are still flying on the DC-6), and answered my questions in several long emails, which I have copied here but which I also have edited (although only for the sake of clarity).  

What follows might best be understood as a colloquy on the Williams book between two people who are struggling to make sense of a crash that happened more than fifty years ago.

* * *

Why does the Hammarskjöld crash still matter? It matters because Secretary General Hammarskjöld had undertaken his mission just as many countries in Africa were seeking their independence from the colonial world. Hammarskjöld was ahead of his time in pushing back against what today we might call the deep state—that confluence of interests between corporate investors, intelligence agencies, and governmental power brokers, all of whom were eager to siphon profits out of the breakaway territory of Katanga. Hammarskjöld thought that Katanga (and its extensive mineral wealth) belonged in the newly independent Republic of the Congo, and the purpose of his mission was to oppose independence for Katanga, which otherwise would fall under the spell of various French, British, Belgian and American multinational corporations.

If you believe—as I do—that Hammarskjöld was the victim of a plot, it can be concluded that the truth about his death has been covered up to shift the blame away from the usual suspects, including the CIA and various mercenary organizations that were then arming themselves across southern Africa. Hammarskjöld and his liberal internationalism were getting in the way of corporate profits, if not Cold War politics, and it was decided—somewhere, somehow—to cut him down to size. Maybe the plotters did not intend to kill him? Maybe they simply wanted to scare him away? But the facts about the Hammarskjöld crash have never been fully available, in part because invaluable transcripts (picked up in particular by US government eavesdropping on that night) have never been released.

What follows are the questions that I posed to Joe, and his responses, based on his reading of the Williams book and his lifetime as a pilot and in aviation. Neither of us pretends that what follows is anything approaching a “last word” in the Hammarskjöld investigation. At the same time it shows how much several concerned citizens, and a budget of $1500 (the cost of my African train travels), can discover. Let’s hope that the new UN investigation can take the Hammarskjöld matter much further. The Secretary’s exemplary life and work demand that the truth of his death be known. — Matthew Stevenson

* * *

Stevenson: Is it possible that pilot error was responsible for the crash of the Albertina?

Majerle: The facts that investigators admitted to in their original reports tell a different story from their conclusions. To me, their conclusions are laughable. This crash was not pilot error.

Per the chart at the beginning of the Williams book, it shows the crash site very close to the turn-back circle (on a safe instrument approach) of the official instrument approach path, which means that the Swedish pilots knew exactly where they were. I don’t think any accident investigation board in the world would dispute that that they were properly executing the published instrument approach procedure for Ndola airport.

The official report admitted that they were at least nominally executing the instrument approach properly, except that they were 1700 feet lower than they were supposed to be, and that was the pilots’ error.

On page 70, according to A. Campbell Martin, the controller on duty, the last communication received from SE-BDY (the code for the Albertina) was confirmation of 1021 millibars—the altimeter setting—which is something I and every pilot I have ever flown with has never failed to reset at the instant we are told the new number.

To me it is inconceivable that the Albertina pilots didn’t know their altitude at that time. If the controller had said he never got around to telling them the current millibars setting, they would have had a basis to sow doubt on that subject, even though that would have been a flimsy excuse in itself, for the following reason.

Explain to me how it is unlikely that the Albertina pilots flew the plane into the ground.

The radio (radar) altimeter came into widespread use in military and commercial airplanes by the end of WW2, even in single-seat fighters such as the P-38. I would bet that, without exception, every DC-6 was equipped with one when it left the factory. And it is the device you base your instrument approach on, if you have one, because a radio altimeter is more accurate and has large graduations up to 1000 feet AGL (Above Ground Level).

Even if the Albertina pilots didn’t have a current altimeter setting, they would have been using their radar altimeter anyway, assuming it was in working order. If not, I think it’s very likely the pilot would have informed the controller of that fact. Which, again, points to the fact that they knew exactly where they were, in all three dimensions.

In the book Dr. Williams writes that an evasive strategy to “lose height, veer and head for the airfield as quickly as possible… may possibly offer some explanation for the low height of SE-BDY as it made its approach to Ndola—about 1700 feet lower than it should have been.”

This conclusion is at the heart of her book and research, and any new investigation needs to focus on what she has written here.

To me it indicates that the Albertina pilots were already planning to evade an attack by getting low enough to prevent another airplane from getting beneath SE-BDY, which to an attacker is the easiest and most preferred way to shoot down another airplane—and there would have been no better way to do that at night than basing it on a radar altimeter.

Explain some of the discrepancies between the official crash report, and the data that Dr. Williams includes in her book, especially in regard to the crash site.

The official report stated that the ground scar at the wreck site was 150 yards long, which is 450 feet. The published stall speed of the DC-6 with flaps down is 92 mph, which is almost exactly 135 feet per second. That is the absolute slowest speed at which it would stay in the air—not the speed at which you would make an approach.

The original Jeppesen approach plate chart for the Ndola airport would have contained a sidebar that would have given the time, in seconds, required to reach the airport at several different approach speeds, usually spaced by 30 mph and 60 mph increments, which simplifies the mental calculations the pilot would need to make or eliminates them if it’s practical for the aircraft to fly at one of the stated speeds exactly.

I would estimate that, in this situation, for a light-to-moderately loaded DC-6, the pilots would have used either 150 or more probably 180 mph, which would be 220 or 264 feet per second of forward velocity.

If, as the official report says, the pilots misjudged their altitude and just flew the plane into the ground while making their final approach, it is beyond a stretch of the imagination that 80-to-90 thousand pounds of airplane would come to a stop in no more than 2.04 seconds, and that every last piece of it would be contained in a mere 450 feet.

This is just very basic math that a 4th-grader could do nine out of ten times and get right. It is an insult to human intelligence to suggest that that’s what happened.

Have you ever examined the crash site of a DC-6 airliner?

Many years ago I had opportunity several times to walk over the crash site of a DC-7 [very similar to the DC-6] that crashed shortly after takeoff due to an out-of-control engine fire in which the pilots tried to crash-land into a recently logged parcel of land.

The fuel dealer told me that he watched as an engine caught fire almost as soon as the plane started its takeoff run, but apparently the pilots didn’t realize it until they were committed to fly. But after clearing the end of the runway, they immediately angled off and headed for the clear-cut area, obviously in an effort to get the plane back on the ground.

It had been nine years since it happened when I first saw the site, and in that rain forest the vegetation had regenerated quite a bit, but the wreckage path of the DC-7 was still obvious. The crew had left the gear and flaps down in takeoff configuration, obviously intending to put it down at as slow a speed as possible in this off-airport area.

My recollection of the debris path was that it was at least 1200 feet long, with no standing trees throughout the path. The largest piece of wreckage at the end of the path was stopped and literally wrapped around what was at least a 6 foot diameter tree, in the flight engineers compartment. Control cables and wiring bundles were literally wrapped all the way around that tree. I would guess that the site is still that way today.

There are some fairly close parallels between that crash and Hammarskjöld’s. The DC-6B and DC-7 are very similar airplanes; sharing the same basic wing and fuselage with the DC-7 employing another short section of fuselage, more powerful engines and a higher gross weight due to the extra power, and with a higher cruise speed also because of the power. But they are both listed on the same type rating for pilots. Sitting side by side, you would have to study them carefully to see the differences.

In these two cases, both planes made it to the ground before impacting any real solid objects; in Hammarskjöld’s case it was the anthill and in the Yakutat crash it was tree stumps. In both cases, the immovable objects turned the airplanes sideways while they still had a lot of momentum, which began the breakup process while the kinetic energy just kept them going.

If they had been able to continue moving straight ahead they might have had a chance, more so for the passengers aft of the cockpit bulkhead. There isn’t a lot of metal in the nose ahead of the pilots compartment to crush and absorb energy.

The DC-7 was known to be overloaded with fresh salmon but would have been light on fuel. Hammarskjöld’s plane would have had a lighter cabin load but would have had considerably more fuel. I would assume that the DC-7 was somewhat heavier overall, but probably not by an amount that would have required a significant speed difference to stay airborne.

What I am getting at here is that in both these cases the airplanes probably hit the ground at roughly equivalent speeds. And the DC-7’s ground scar was about three times as long as Hammarskjöld’s, and still had some energy when it wrapped itself around a tree.

If Hammarskjöld’s pilots had inadvertently flown the aircraft into the ground, I think it is reasonable to assume that it would have traveled much farther before all the pieces came to rest.

This did not happen, which to me indicates that the physics of the official reports are all wrong—at least when matched to their conclusions.

What can we conclude from the configuration of the Hammarskjöld plane as it hit the ground?

The official report stated that the landing gear was down and locked, and the wing flaps were extended to the 30 degree position. I would have loved to cross examine the local accident board and ask them which pilots they know that would be 8-to-9 miles out on an instrument approach and have 30 degrees of flaps down at that point, to say nothing of having the gear down.

Thirty degrees of flap down on a DC-6 is a lot of flap; probably about optimal for a low speed approach over obstacle-free terrain to make a short-field landing. Maximum flap down angle on a DC-6 is 50 degrees, which you would normally only use to bleed off a lot of excess altitude, and it would require a lot of engine power with which to maintain altitude.

In my experience no pilot would drop the landing gear until about the point that you had crossed the “final approach fix,” in this case the non-directional (radio) beacon, which is at four miles or so from the end of the runway.

At four miles out the pilots would have had plenty of time to drop the gear and double check it before reaching the runway end roughly 90 seconds later. Experienced crews normally do that as late as they can just to get there sooner. This accident board didn’t even know how to lie to make the facts fit their case.

Recently I had opportunity to talk to a friend of mine that flew DC-6s about thirty years ago. He currently owns and flies two DC-4’s, a freighter and a fuel tanker, around the state.

He confirmed to me—as I thought earlier—that a DC-6 pilot would have flown that instrument approach at 156 to 160 knots (180 to 184 miles per hour) and would absolutely not have had gear and flaps down 8 or 9 miles from the runway.

And if he found his wing on fire, unless on short final to a runway, his only thought would be to get it on the ground.

What do you think happened?

To me, all of the admitted evidence (in UN reports and in the Williams book) adds up to one thing. The crew made a desperate attempt to save their lives by getting the airplane on the ground, most probably because they knew they had a wing fuel tank on fire.

A gasoline fire at night, to my experience, is very bright and from the cockpit side windows of a DC-6 you can see to the inboard nacelle without straining your neck. If it was a wing fire, the pilots would have known it. It would have taken all of their strength not to panic and just continue to do what needed to be done.

And here I take issue with one of the advisers to Dr. Williams—a Mr. Kjell Peterzén—who is quoted in the book as saying: “There is no way he would have gone down into the darkness and the woods…” I can name six incidents here in Alaska since 1977 in which pilots have descended into the woods, or whatever was below including a mountain ridge, to deliberately crash burning airplanes in an attempt to save their own lives.

In one of these cases—coincidentally it was a DC-6—the pilot hesitated because he didn’t want to have to do that, even though the cockpit voice recorder picked up other crew members urging him to get the airplane “on the ground, NOW!” But he didn’t. The wing folded up and moments later they all crashed to their deaths.

In all of the other cases the pilots understood how few seconds they had to live if they didn’t “put it on the ground.” Remarkably, most of the crews survived, although some had bad injuries.

I would say—at least from my corner of the world—that pilots will attempt a crash into the unknown if they understand how quickly an airplane made from aluminum can disintegrate in a raging fire.

Aluminum, of the kind used in the making of the Hammarskjöld DC-6,yields at 925 degrees Fahrenheit and liquifies at 1225 degrees Fahrenheit. When the fire gets much above the 1225 degrees Fahrenheit point, the metal itself actually ignites and burns up, which is why there is normally so few pounds of airplane left after one has burned uncontrollably.

Pilots know this, and will respond instinctively when they see, for example, one of their wings on fire.

What’s your reaction to the conclusion that the Albertina was simply flown into the ground, so-called Controlled Flight Into Terrain (CFIT)?

As for all of the talk about pilot error and CFIT, I still cannot believe that no-one ever mentions the fact that they had gear and flaps down when they were still at least three minutes from the runway, which you just wouldn’t do, unless you’re planning to land “very soon.”

I thought it curious when I read in the Williams book: “It was as if the aircraft was making a perfect landing…” That conclusion is a very astute observation. That doesn’t happen in CFIT situations.

In my experience, CFIT planes start breaking little things and leaving little pieces over a long area before you start seeing the larger pieces and more ground disturbance. If you see something that looks like a landing attempt was being made, it usually is. And this explains why the crash site itself was so contained in such a small area.

In the Williams book, Virving states that “an explosion a few yards from the aircraft could have dislodged vital control wires from their pulleys…” My reaction to that thesis: “Ah, no, generally not.”

All type certificated aircraft are required to have a cable guard at every pulley station to retain them and to prevent that very thing from happening. In all my time working on airplanes (some forty years), I have never seen that happen unless the whole pulley mounting structure was ripped away from the primary structure, in which case the pulley and guard assembly would still be hanging on the cable. But that requires the wing or fuselage or tail component itself to be massively damaged. In this case, the airplane was obviously under control when it started hitting the sapling trees—in order to be “making a perfect landing.”

It has occurred to me that, in a sense, the British investigators were right when they said that it was a CFIT accident. But they left out the part that it was an INTENTIONAL controlled flight into terrain accident.

Right now, it seems really hard to believe that the original 1962 UN report did not ever advance that notion, i.e., that no-one they consulted ever suggested that as a possibility. To me it seems obvious.

In any new UN investigation (led by Judge Othman) of the Hammarskjöld crash, one of the keys to discovering the truth about what happened could be found on intercepted transcripts of the voice communication from the Albertina, which, as Dr. Williams reports, were picked up at a CIA listening post on Cyprus. How would that have been possible in 1961?

In the Williamsbook, someone who was at the airport that night states that while waiting for Hammarskjöld’s plane to arrivehe “heard an airplane start up but never took off.”

I would speculate that what he heard would have been one of the USAF DC-3’s (C-47) that were parked that night at Ndola, and which explains how a CIA listening post in Cyprus would have intercepted the Albertina’s voice communications.

Here’s some background: At least some of the military C-47’s that were kept in service after World War II had radio rooms, for lack of a better word, that had gear that could transmit or receive (or both) on every frequency from LF through UHF. These rooms were state of the art. All of this gear and their trays, mount brackets, and bulkheads weighed over a thousand pounds.

In 1978 I did some work on a DC-3C that had recently been surplussed, sold, and converted from a VC-47D. I had opportunity to see all that analog electronic stuff on a shelf for about a dozen years after that and was always impressed.

I would suggest that the source of the radio conversation that Charles Southall listened into on Cyprus originated from a keyed HF microphone held into a headset speaker on the VHF frequency of Ndola airport by the crew of an idling USAF C-47.

They would have needed to have an engine generator online to run an inverter because some of that radio equipment was using AC voltage. And if it was going to take very long, they would have run down the batteries without a generator operating.

One of the persistent theories about the Hammarskjöld crash is that mercenaries, perhaps flying Fouga CM.170 Magister or other aircraft, might have intercepted SE-BDY on its approach, and either bombed it or caused the larger plane to crash. There is speculation that a De Havailland Dove might have been involved. What do you think?

About the speculation that aDe Havilland Dove might have been modified to drop small bombs from above the DC-6, I think not. That configuration has been tried since WW I with virtually nosuccess; when it worked it was a fluke.

In WWII, the Germans experimented with it a little and the Japanese more, and all with a very low success rate. The Dove also could have only kept up with the DC-6 in the landing pattern; the DC-6 was capable of roughly twice the Dove’s speed.

The Percival P.56 Provosts that were on the Ndola field at that time and had forward firing armament could have had some chance against the Albertina, but, as I recall, they were not thought to have flown that night.

But a single tracer round from even a 30-caliber gun at even 500 yards range could punch through the DC-6’s relatively thin aluminum skin and ignite a fuel vapor chamber that would break seams loose in the resulting explosion and doom any airplane. The Fouga Magister was known to have two such guns with a tracer in every fifth clip of the ammo belts.

Dr. Williams cites some of the Fouga’s performance and range specs, although other sources that I know give them as considerably lower. But, still, if you ask me, this operation was well within its capabilities.

When I visited the Ndola museum and spoke with some of the guides, they explained that the Hammarskjöld plane was flying away from the airport, in the direction of the plane replica at the site, which is headed west. You think it was heading toward the Ndola airport. Why?

I’m sure you heard the guide correctly; the problem is that the guide probably does not understand what happened. Which is really not at all surprising; even if the guide was someone that had seen it before the pieces were hauled away, the crash site would have appeared to be mostly chaos in a big charred spot with a lot of garbage laying around at random, especially if they weren’t familiar with airplanes.

Can you describe the crash site?

The UN chart tells the story, which is corroborated by Björn Virving’s account of the crash site. [Virving, a Swedish citizen, was an observer to the early investigation of the crash.]

Abeam the ant hill, way ahead of the main body of wreckage where it came to rest, was the warning horn, the primary function of which is to alert the pilots to the fact that the landing gear is still up if the throttles are retarded and is below a certain airspeed, and it is mounted in the cockpit area.

Coming a bit closer to the main body of wreckage (MBW), identified items are almost all from the fuselage nose area, except for a small piece of heavy spar section and wing fairing (fillet)—the spar section almost certainly being from the left wing.

Included in the distant cockpit area wreckage is the radio (radar) altimeter, I have just noticed for the first time. This is where the pilots’ bodies start to appear also. So there is no doubt now that it had a radar altimeter.

At the point about dead abeam the MBW, the airplane was pivoting on its belly to the left, the left wing was folding back and the fuselage ahead of the wing was splitting open and folding to the left also. The right hand horizontal stabilizer was probably catching on the tree stumps left after the right hand wing mowed the trees down and twisting the tail-cone loose before being sheared off completely.

The tail control cables evidently held and didn’t fail in tension in this case; otherwise the tail-cone section would have ended up near the right hand tailplane.

The left wing, compromised not only by impact with the ant hill but with the alleged inflight fire, is folded back to lie alongside the aft fuselage with to me, surprisingly, its engines in approximately their correct positions. I could easily have imagined them to be found up near the ant hill. The other surprising thing is that the main landing gear stayed under it, in place, which is almost unheard of in a wheels down landing out in the woods.

The chart doesn’t show, or at least so far I haven’t found, where the main nose gear strut came to rest. Associated parts are right where I’d expect them to be in the first third of the wreckage path. The DC-6 pilots I know say that the nose gear is a bit fragile; if it digs in to soft ground it will fold up or tear off and needs to be treated carefully.

If the Albertina hadn’t had the misfortune to hit he anthill, the skinny trees would probably have arrested its forward movement in a fairly short distance and the passengers, if they were strapped in, would have had a pretty good chance of walking away.

If the chart is to scale, and it appears to be, the airplane had already lost a lot of its momentum, i.e., it didn’t travel more than about eighty feet or so past the ant hill, which is not very far for a one hundred foot long fuselage. It might even have come to a stop still standing on all three gear. Just about like a Navy plane (on an aircraft carrier) missing the arresting cables and running into the net barrier.

The UN chart shows the Ndola runway orientation to be magnetic 100 – 280, or only 10 degrees from east-west. It says that the aircraft was on a heading (it should say “course,” because a heading is a course when corrected for wind) of 120 degrees, which would have been aiming them toward the non-directional beacon, to line them up with the runway. As I have said, they were very close to where the instrument approach procedure wants you to be for the procedure turn.

Can you hypothesize Hammarskjöld’s last moments? Alone of the passengers he was found propped up against an ant hill at the crash site, and he was not burned in any way.

In my view, Hammarskjöld himself was probably standing in the cockpit bulkhead doorway, behind the flight engineer, who sits behind and in between the pilots, facing forward in the DC-6, and all three of them would have been strapped into their seats.

After bouncing over the ant hill, the nose would have broken open as it would have been the first thing to hit the ground, and Hammarskjöld, not being fastened in, would have just been thrown out or fallen out through the opening.

The still-moving, burning remainder of the airplane just kept on moving past him, and was arrested by the trees as it swung around. It all fits, really, and has been seen to happen that way many times in history.

Can you sum up your thinking about what happened to Hammarskjöld’s plane, SE-BDY?

I would surmise that SE-BDY (Albertina) was attacked at the beginning of the procedure turn to return the plane to the non-directional beacon bearing. (To me the attacking planes had to have had the capacity to shoot bullets or tracers. I don’t believe anyone tried to bomb the DC-6.)

The pilot then quickly decided to finish the turn back toward where he knew there to be light and to get the plane on the ground as soon as he could, knowing that the runway, some three minutes away, was way too far to expect a burning wing to get him to.

In my opinion, the pilots (by name—Captain Per Hallonquist, Captain Nils-Erik Åhréus and Second Pilot Lars Litton) came very, very close to pulling it off and should be commended for their bravery and professionalism. They knew what they were doing.

What would you like to see the new investigation of the crash look into?

Keep in mind that all of the evidence from the crash site, at this point, has been compromised, by age or the dictates of the earlier crash examiners, who came to the wreckage only with the intent to blame the pilots for the accident. What we got from the first 1962 inquiry into the crash was a political judgment—not the informed thinking of experienced pilots or crash investigators. Since that time, most of the primary evidence has been lost to time.

Most of all I would like to see the Swedish crew and especially its pilot in command exonerated for blame in this crash. As I said before, the pilots acted heroically and professionally in trying to land a burning plane on the ground in order to save the lives of their passengers. Instead of being recognized for their valor, the crew, themselves victims, was blamed for the crash.

I would love to believe that physical evidence of the crash might help new investigators come to some conclusions about the crash, but the fact is that the plane was made of a zinc alloy aluminum that will have turned to mud and paste after more than fifty years under ground. I am not optimistic that the physical evidence will reveal anything new in the inquiry.

Instead, investigators should turn their attentions to old photographs, video, and audio recordings that might be found in archives around the world, and from these files try to reconstruct the last moments of the doomed flight. They might also make a microscopic reexamination of the original report for just the kinds of contradictions that even a reader like myself picked up in some of the files quoted in the Williams book. There have to be a lot more inconsistencies in the files that professionals of today would find.

If the files of the listening post on Cyprus were to have any transmissions from the flight deck (personally, I don’t think they exist), we might learn more details of what was said once it was discovered that their left wing was on fire. But cockpit recorders were not around in those days.

Please sum up what you think happened

In conclusion, let me state again what I think happened: I think one of the mercenary aircraft, operating around Ndola on that night, fired a tracer bullet into the fuel tanks of the Hammarskjöld plane, causing the left wing to catch on fire. Fearing that the left wing would fold up into the fuselage of the plane, the pilots did the only thing that was available to them: to configure the plane for a controlled (so to speak) crash landing in the short amount of time available to them. That action explains the 30 degrees of flaps setting on impact (nine miles out from the Ndola runway!), the relative slow speed at impact (they were just above the stall speed), and the compact crash site (not consistent with CFIT). The pilots had no choice but to put the plane “on the ground… now!” and that they did, skillfully, in my mind.

Had they succeeded and been able to tell their own story at the inquests, we would now have a clearer picture of what happened on that fatal approach. Because the crew was killed on impact or in the subsequent fires, it was left to colonial administrators—in places such as Northern Rhodesia—to whitewash the crash scene and to blame the pilots, who along with Hammarskjöld and his team were also the victims. Exonerating the pilots would go a long way in correcting an injustice that has lingered since 1961.

Finally, I hope the publishers of Dr. Williams’ book encourage her to release yet another edition of the book. (An updated edition did come out in late 2016.) Perhaps she might be able to integrate into her book the more recent findings of Judge Othman? I would hope so. As much as anyone outside the UN system, Dr. Williams has kept alive the tragic story of what happened to Secretary Hammarskjöld in Ndola, and I commend her for all of the excellent work she has done to uncover the truth. If someone wants to know more about this case, her book, Who Killed HammarskjöldThe UN, the Cold War and White Supremacy in Africa, is the best place to begin.

Matthew Stevenson is the author of many books, including Reading the Rails and, most recently, Appalachia Spring, about the coal counties of West Virginia and Kentucky. He lives in Switzerland and was in Africa at the crash site in 2017.

Joseph Majerle has worked in aviation for the last forty-one years, both as a mechanic and a pilot, and he has worked on a number of historic planes. He lives in Alaska.

January 11, 2019 Posted by | Deception, Timeless or most popular | , , , | Leave a comment

FULL MEASURE – The Vaccination Debate

Full Measure with Sharyl Attkisson | January 6, 2019

Today we investigate one of the biggest medical controversies of our time: vaccines. There’s little dispute about this much– vaccines save many lives, and rarely, they injure or kill. A special federal vaccine court has paid out billions for injuries from brain damage to death. But not for the form of brain injury we call autism. Now—we have remarkable new information: a respected pro-vaccine medical expert used by the federal government to debunk the vaccine-autism link, says vaccines can cause autism after all. He claims he told that to government officials long ago, but they kept it secret.

January 10, 2019 Posted by | Corruption, Deception, Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular, Video | | 1 Comment

Summing up: Official Claims in the Salisbury Poisonings Weighed and Found Wanting

By Rob Slane | The Blog Mire | January 9, 2019

As promised, I want to round off my pieces on the Salisbury case by looking at what I consider to be the major issues and flaws with the case presented to the public by the British Government and the Metropolitan Police, as well as the role played by the mainstream media. I have chosen 10 major points (not in any particular order), although there are many more issues than these.

This is a necessarily lengthy piece and I wouldn’t blame you if you gave up half way through to go and do something more profitable with your time, such as reading a decent book, cooking a good meal, or horsing around with your children. But on the offchance that you are of a mind to stick it out to the end (or even to split it up in between slices of something more profitable), consider this my attempt to show why any person endowed with powers of reason, logic and a commitment to facts and truth should not believe the case that has been put to the general public as to what happened in Salisbury on 4th March, 2018.

1. Verdict First; Investigation Afterwards

I was bound to be interested in this case from the off, since it took place in the city where I reside, just a few hundred yards from my home. But what really sparked my interest into writing about the case for so long, was the response of the British Government. Within 48 hours of the incident, before the investigation had properly begun, and before any of the facts of the matter had been established, certain Government ministers were already pointing the finger of blame at the Russian state. Too quick. Something’s up.

Then on 12th and 14th March, little more than a week after the incident, and still with almost no facts of what actually happened having been established by investigators, the British Prime Minister, Theresa May, not only formally accused the Russian Government in the House of Commons, but also announced a series of responsive measures. Much too quick. Something’s definitely up.

So quick were the accusations and verdict, that anyone interested in understanding the truth of what happened, rather than making blithe, fact-free assumptions, could not fail to have had their suspicions aroused.

There are three things to note about this.

The first is that the idea of reaching a verdict before an investigation puts the British Government firmly in Alice in Wonderland territory. Quite apart from being plainly ludicrous, it also meant that the investigation was both politicised and prejudiced right from the start. The possibility of an impartial investigation was dead in the water just a week or so after the incident, and it was the British Government that killed it off. One can’t help but wonder whether that was the very point they were hoping to achieve.

The second issue with their reckless accusations is seen in their paltry response to what they say happened. You might think that this is a ridiculous statement to make, given that the response included the expulsion of diplomats, not only in Britain but also in a number of other countries. But it absolutely is not. What is alleged is that a chemical weapon was used, by a foreign Government, on the territory of Britain. Moreover, it is also alleged that the two suspects allegedly left at least one of their two bottles of “Novichok” lying around in the city (yes two bottles – see point 5 below), the contents of which was apparently enough to kill thousands, if not tens of thousands of people.

If this is what really happened, I would expect a rather more robust response than the expulsion of a few diplomats. I would expect the expulsion of all diplomats, the closure of the Embassy, and pretty much any and every measure possible short of a declaration of war. Basically, I would expect everything those folks at the “Integrity Initiative” were calling for back in 2015!

As it was, the actual response was pathetically inadequate to the charge being made, namely that the Russian Government was responsible for the use of a chemical weapon on the streets of a British city, which was left there to potentially kill thousands of innocent people. The feeble nature of the “response” to what could have been considered an act of war is, in my view, a big clue that those making the accusations and taking the responsive measures do not really believe the story they have told, and that there was an awful lot of theatre going on.

But the third, and by far the most important point about the British Government’s initial accusations, is this: the accusation and verdict came over two weeks before the door handle theory was first mooted, and over three weeks before it was officially confirmed as the place of poisoning (on 28th March). This is VERY important.

In his only interview on the subject, the CEO of Porton Down, Gary Aitkenhead, stated that the organisation he heads was not able to identify the origin of the substance used. To do so, he said, required “other inputs,” some of them intelligence-based, that the Government had access to.

So what were these intelligence-based inputs? We have no need to speculate. This is what a Foreign Office spokesperson said of the reasoning behind the accusations:

“As the Prime Minister has set out in a number of statements to the Commons since 12 March, this includes our knowledge that within the last decade, Russia has investigated ways of delivering nerve agents — probably for assassination — and as part of this programme has produced and stockpiled small quantities of novichoks.”

As an aside, if this were really the case, then the British Government had an obligation to inform the OPCW of their intelligence, especially since the OPCW had declared in November 2017 that Russia had eliminated its entire stock of chemical weapons. So why did they not?

But the claim made by the spokesperson presents a glaring problem. What was this knowledge that “Russia has investigated ways of delivering nerve agents”? The answer was of course subsequently given to us: the infamous alleged FSB manual, which apparently included details of how to deliver nerve agents via door handles. Yet if this is the case, it gives rise to the following question:

If the British Government came to the conclusion that the Russian Government was behind the attack by 14th March, and if this was based in part on the existence of intelligence showing the delivery of nerve agents via door handles, why was the door handle not identified as a possible place of poisoning until more than a week later, and only officially confirmed on 28th March?

That question will never be answered, of course, because to do so would … all together now … “compromise national security.” There is, however, a quite plausible explanation, but you can probably work that out for yourselves.

2. CCTV, CCTV everywhere, but not a clip to see

It is a curious fact about what was almost certainly the biggest police investigation in British history, that the amount of CCTV footage shown to the public by the police of events on 4th March totals less than one minute. However, it should be noted that even this footage was only aired in November — more than eight months after the event —, and was very obviously highly selective in terms of fixing certain thoughts in people’s minds and excluding others. Let’s just say that it was more interesting for what it didn’t show than for what it did.

It is an even more curious fact that not one second of footage has ever been shown of the Skripals on that day, unless you include a few seconds of a car driving along a couple of roads.

Curiouser still, the only bit of CCTV footage of “the Skripals” that was released, showing them walking through Market Walk at 15:47, turned out not to be the Skripals at all. You might say that it turned out not to be anyone at all, since the footage was ridiculously grainy, the couple impossible to identify, and the pair in question, who the media and the police said were the Skripals, have been quietly forgotten about, as if they never were, even though they are almost certainly persons of interest in the case. Remember, you never saw them.

What should we make of this?

The response I have sometimes received when pointing this out is that the police have no obligation to show any CCTV footage in public. They are the ones investigating, and they need not do anything for the benefit of armchair sleuths. Fair enough. But then nor does any reasonable person have any obligation whatsoever to believe that they have been carrying out a genuine and impartial investigation. Why so?

Simply because on numerous occasions, the Metropolitan Police appealed for members of the public to come forth with information about what they may have seen on that day, and yet they steadfastly refused to let the public see any images of the two main people involved in the case, Sergei and Yulia Skripal. The public still don’t know what they were wearing on that day, or the colour of Yulia’s hair.

Ordinarily, when a police force appeals for members of the public to come forward with information, if there is CCTV footage that is relevant to the case, and which might help to jog people’s memories, it will be shown. Obviously. But not in this case. Instead, the Salisbury public were asked to wrack their brains to try and remember whether they may or may not have seen anything of interest, but without so much as being allowed to see a single second of what Mr Skripal and his daughter were wearing that day.

Yet such footage does exist. For example, there exists what has been described to me personally as “real clear footage” of Mr Skripal feeding ducks near the Avon Playground with some local boys at 13:45, with Yulia Skripal standing nearby carrying a red bag. Why has this not been aired? Remember, the Metropolitan Police allege that the pair were poisoned almost an hour before this, at his home, and so there can be no “reasons of national security” for not showing it, can there? Oh but there is. You see, that particular piece of footage blows a gaping hole in the poisoning by door handle explanation, which would immediately become obvious to all if it were ever aired in public (see point 6 below for more details). Which is why you will probably never see it.

3. Don’t ask any hard questions — you’re a journalist

The Salisbury poisonings show that the idea that Britain has a properly free press is dead. When I say free press, I am not talking about the ability and willingness of the media to print salacious gossip and pointless tittle tattle about celebrities, which they seem to excel at. No, I’m talking about the will and ability to hold the authorities to account on issues which those authorities would rather they were not challenged on. That, in my understanding, is the essence of a free press and one of the things that marks out free countries from tyrannies.

Right from the beginning of this case, three things were very apparent about the media response:

Firstly, despite the fact that there was deep scepticism in the public about the narrative that was being touted (this could be seen by scrolling to the bottom of articles on the case, where you would find comment after comment often ridiculing the official line), not one mainstream media organisation was prepared to ask the obvious and most basic questions that needed to be asked. True, there were some notable and noble individual exceptions, such as Mary Dejevsky writing in the Independent and Simon Jenkins in the Guardian. But other than the faint glimmer of light here and there, no media organisation in Britain was either able or willing to question the claims being made by public officials, even when they were nonsensical and riddled with holes.

Secondly, no media organisation was prepared to defy the Government when DSMA notices were slapped on the case, especially in relation to Mr Skripal’s Salisbury handler, and the connection he had to Christopher Steele, author of the “Trump Dossier”. And in case anyone is inclined to defend them by saying that it would have been a huge risk for them to defy the Government, well that is one thing, but it certainly does not excuse the fact that they all then fell into line, refusing to ask any of the sorts of questions that proper journalists should have been asking.

Thirdly, many of these organisations were prepared to report one set of “facts” on one day, only to report an entirely contradictory set of “facts” on another, without so much as an acknowledgement that this is what they had done. Many of them simply ignored their own reporting, even on the occasions when it was accurate, and instead went with the “new reality” put forward by officials. Memory Holes are clearly a fundamental part of the office equipment in these so-called news organisations! Here are three such examples:

Firstly, all media organisations reporting on the case in the first week or so stated that the Skripals went to Zizzis restaurant followed by the Mill pub. This was based on their own interviews with numerous witnesses, and such is the number of people who corroborated this order of things that there can be no doubt that it is correct (this is more fully discussed in point 7 below). Yet when the Metropolitan Police published its timeline on 13th March, updated on 17th March (and since disappeared from its website), it had the order the other way around. What did those same media organisations do when they saw their own interviews and reports summarily dismissed with no evidence presented as to why this was so? Why, they completely ignored it and duly began reporting the new reality. Of course. That’s just what journalists do, isn’t it?

Secondly, it was reported in a number of places on 25th March, such as (The Mirror, The Mail and Metro for instance), that Sergei Skripal had been feeding ducks next to the Avon Playground (this is in The Maltings, about 50 yards from the bench). Crucially, these reports said that he had given bread to some local boys. The Sun then followed this up on 28th March, with an interview with the parents of one of the boys. This is one of the most significant occurrences of that day, and yet after The Sun piece appeared, to my knowledge no mainstream media organisation has reported on it, and the Metropolitan Police have never mentioned it in their timeline. Perhaps there’s a DSMA Notice — Duck’s Shan’t be Mentioned Again — on the incident, but regardless of the lack of reporting, the fact is it DID happen, and IT IS one of the most compelling pieces of evidence that the Skripals were not poisoned at the place and the time that officials claim (see point 6 below for more details).

Thirdly, no media organisation has bothered to seriously question what Detective Sergeant Nicholas Bailey was doing, where he went, and at what time, even though official accounts have contradicted one another on this on numerous occasions. Mr Bailey has been a first responder at the bench (according to a number of officials, including Theresa May and Amber Rudd). Yet he was never even at the bench when the Skripals were there (according to Mr Bailey). He entered Mr Skripal’s house at around 5pm. Yet he didn’t enter it until around midnight. He was wearing a body camera with his uniform. He was plainclothes. He was wearing a forensic suit. He was admitted to hospital on the Sunday. He was admitted to hospital on the Monday. He was admitted to hospital on the Tuesday. Perhaps all three. He entered the house by the front door. He entered the house by the back door because he couldn’t get in the front.

In short, almost no two accounts of Mr Bailey’s actions and movements can be reconciled with one another, and yet the media either hasn’t noticed, or doesn’t care. Is there a DSMA Notice on him as well as the ducks (Detective Sergeant Movement Anomalies)?

All in all, it seems that although our vaunted “free press” is able and willing to comment on the attire and habits of irrelevant celebrities, it is neither able or willing to ask serious questions of officialdom when officialdom has decided that a certain issue can’t be questioned or is something to do with “National Security”. There’s a word for a press like that, but it ain’t “free”. And in terms of this case, it raises obvious questions about the veracity of the claims being made, since truth isn’t usually afraid of being held up to scrutiny.

4. Petrov and Boshirov — Spetsnaz-trained muppets?

Much was made of Petrov and Boshirov’s interview with RT’s Margarita Simonyan, and how their account somehow proved their guilt. What I find strange about this reaction is why those who pronounced case closed after the interview don’t apply the same level of critical analysis when it comes to the claims made against the men. For the record, I have little doubt that the account given by the pair was by no means the whole truth of what they were doing that day, but I also have little doubt that the claims made against them are also far from the truth.

Why do I not believe their account? Nothing to do with the snow and the slush, which was apparently enough to prove their guilt in the minds of many. On that point, their account was indeed correct. There was loads of snow in Salisbury on Saturday 3rd March, and I have photographs dating from that day which prove it. No, my incredulity at their story is primarily due to the fact that they arrived in Salisbury on 3rd March at 2:25pm, apparently expecting to go to Stonehenge. Well, unless they are particularly dense, this claim is absurd. In the winter, last admittance to the site is at 3pm. Anyone travelling from London to see the monument would surely have checked this out beforehand, which means that according to the two men, they gave themselves 35 minutes after departing from the train to wait for a bus, board it, and be driven there before closing time. No chance, regardless of whether it was or wasn’t open.

That being said, what of the case against them? Just as I find their “we were only tourists” line to be risible, I find the “they were deadly assassins” line to be even more absurd. Nothing about their movements on the two days in question indicate that they were carrying out an assassination attempt using the world’s most lethal nerve agent:

Firstly, they flew in on the same plane from Moscow, not from different locations as you would expect intelligence agents carrying out an assassination to do

Secondly, they then travelled, walked and stayed together at all times, not separately, which is again contrary to how we would expect people involved in such a mission to act

Thirdly, they apparently left their two bottles of “Novichok” unguarded in a dingy hotel all day on the Saturday, whilst they took themselves off to Salisbury

Fourthly, they drew attention to themselves on the Saturday evening by cavorting with a prostitute and smoking dope (which could have seen the police called in)

Fifthly, they made absolutely no effort whatsoever to hide themselves from CCTV

Sixthly, they were in Salisbury in daylight and allegedly carried out their crime in the middle of the day

Seventhly, they apparently did their deed with the Skripals in the house and the car parked outside in the drive (why not dose the car door handle?)

Eighthly, they did not get the first available train back to London after the alleged poisoning, but apparently decided to hang around, strolling across town after their alleged deed was done, taking pictures and looking in coin shops, at a time when — according to the allegations against them — they could well have expected a major police manhunt to begin

This may be many things, but it is absolutely not the actions of Spetsnaz trained GU assassins. But what of The Metropolitan Police’s specific claims against the two men?

Firstly, it should be noted that in The Met’s description of what the men did in Salisbury on 3rd and 4th March (now disappeared from their website), there was astonishingly little detail. There was in fact more detail about their movements in London than in Salisbury.

Secondly, The Met states that the two men were in Salisbury on Saturday 3rd March for what it calls reconnaissance. I find this laughable. Reconnaissance of what? Salisbury? There’s always Google maps. Mr Skripal’s house? Of course! So where is the evidence that they went there that day, and if they did, why didn’t they poison the door handle then, since Mr Skripal was out of the house at the time and it would have been far less risky to do it then, rather than when he was in the house. Besides, the men stated that they spent most of the time in the station café, a quite specific claim that could easily be debunked if false.

But the biggest claim made by The Met, and in my view the most misleading of all, is this:

“CCTV shows them in the vicinity of Mr Skripal’s house.”

This was confirmed by Deputy Assistant Commissioner Dean Haydon, who stated on the BBC Panorama programme, Salisbury Nerve Agent Attack: The Inside Story:

“What the CCTV shows is the two suspects on the way to Christie Miller Road. On the way to the Skripals home.”

Oh no it doesn’t. The CCTV referred to (of the two men on the Wilton Road at 11:58 on Sunday 4th March) does not in fact show them in the vicinity of the Mr Skripal’s house, and nor does it show them on the way to Christie Miller Road. What it actually shows is the two men around 500-600 yards from Mr Skripal’s house, on a completely different road, and not looking at all as if they are interested in crossing the road to get to Christie Miller Road, either via Montgomery Gardens or Canadian Avenue (I’m very grateful to Brendan, one of the commentators on this site, who has put together a fuller explanation of this which you can see here).

For all I know, they may have gone to Christie Miller Road after being seen on the Shell garage CCTV. But this particular piece of footage of them in no way indicates this, and to suggest to the public that it does is simply misleading and disingenuous. Indeed, if this is the best evidence The Met has against the pair, it is worse than flimsy and would convince no jury with its wits intact.

So if not tourists and not assassins, what were they? Here is the one part of this piece when I indulge in a little speculation. To me it seems that the best explanation for their actions and movements is that they were couriers of some sort. That they were either taking something to Mr Skripal, or receiving something from him, or perhaps both. Their pattern of behaviour is far more in keeping with such a mission. I can well imagine the Russian intelligence services instructing two people involved in such a venture to act like tourists, to keep together, look normal, take pictures, don’t try to hide. What I can’t imagine is them instructing two people sent on an assassination mission with a deadly nerve agent to act in this way. That’d be really, really dumb, wouldn’t it?

5. The other bottle of “Novichok”

According to the explanation given by The Metropolitan Police (who incidentally still have not confirmed the “real names” of the two suspects as unearthed by the Atlantic Council-linked organisation, Bellingcat), Petrov and Boshirov brought two bottles of “Novichok” with them on a plane, left those two bottles of “Novichok” in their hotel room on Saturday 4th March whilst they travelled to and from Salisbury, had those two bottles of “Novichok” in their hotel room when smoking dope and using the services of a prostitute, took those two bottles of “Novichok” with them on a train on Sunday 4th March, used one of those bottles of “Novichok” to spray the oily substance on Mr Skripal’s door handle. And then what? Why, they marched across to the other side of Salisbury, dumped the other bottle of “Novichok” — the one they hadn’t used — in a bin, and either took the one they had used in their bag back to Moscow, or dumped it elsewhere.

Come on, come on, you say. The Met has never said all that.

Absolutely they haven’t. But it is the inescapable conclusion of their case. They never talk about the “other” bottle, because it is inconvenient to do so. It kind of messes things up. And yet, according to their own case, there must have been another bottle. How so? Because in one of his interviews, Charlie Rowley explicitly said that the box he found had a cellophane wrapping on it, which he had to cut open. Which means that it can’t have been the bottle that Petrov and Boshirov are alleged to have used on the door handle of 47 Christie Miller Road, can it? They can’t have taken the bottle apart, put it back in its box, cellophane wrapped it, and then dumped it in a bin over the other side of town, can they? Did you notice a cellophane-wrapping-machine-sized-lump sticking out of their backpack? No, me neither.

So what does The Met think? Can they explain why two men, apparently on a mission to kill Mr Skripal at the door handle of his house, brought two bottles with them (especially since they tell us there was enough in one bottle to kill thousands of people)? Can they explain why, after using one of the bottles, they then went over to the other side of town and dumped the fresh, unopened bottle of Novichok in a bin? And can they explain whether they think the men took the opened bottle with them back to Moscow, or left that in Salisbury too? I very much doubt whether The Met can explain these things, or that the British media is ever going to ask them.

And so we must apparently be satisfied with the explanation — implied by The Met’s claims — that the men inexplicably dumped an unopened bottle of “Novichok” in a bin, in cellophane wrapping, and did who knows what with the other.

Oh and something else that bothers me: can they tell us whether they ever found the gloves the two men used when allegedly doing their deed? I mean, they did use gloves, didn’t they? They must have done. Well, wouldn’t these have been dumped somewhere in a bush near Mr Skripal’s house? It’s unlikely that they would want to risk putting these potentially nerve agent-contaminated items back into their backpack. So where are the gloves, and where is the other bottle? Or is that a case of asking people who know what really happened to tell us how the thing that didn’t happen, happened?

6. Duck’s are still a’ dabbling, up tails all (and the boys are okay too)

I’ve mentioned the duck feed above, and I want to emphasise here just how crucial it is to the whole case. The Metropolitan Police allege that Mr Skripal and Yulia became contaminated with “Novichok” by touching the handle of his front door. This would have been sometime around 13:30, a few moments before his car was seen on CCTV in India Avenue and Devizes Road, driving towards Salisbury City Centre.

According to the official timeline (which has now conveniently disappeared from The Met’s website), they are said to have parked the car on the top floor of the Sainsbury’s car park at 13:40 and:

“At some time after this, they go to the Bishops Mill Pub in the town centre.”

At some time after? Bit woolly isn’t it? Yes it is, and that may be because there’s something missing. After parking his car, Mr Skripal and his daughter did not go to the pub or restaurant, but took a little detour, across The Maltings, to the Avon Playground, where they fed ducks for a while.

As I mentioned in point 3, this incident was first reported on 25th March, and then subsequently in The Sun on 28th March. In those pieces, it was stated that during the duck feed, Mr Skripal shared his bread with some local boys, with one of them even eating a piece. The purpose of these articles was clearly to show just how callous those behind the poisoning were, since it could have led to the poisoning of these boys. But because none of the boys became ill in the slightest, inadvertently what these articles actually ended up showing is something else entirely.

When I first read those pieces, my assumption was that the incident had taken place after the Skripals had left Zizzis, and that they may even have taken some garlic bread from the restaurant with them. However, a parent of one of the boys confirmed to me that they had been shown “real clear” CCTV of the incident, and that the timestamp on the footage was 13:45. In other words, the incident was before the visit to either Zizzis or The Mill.

This is extremely significant. The table at Zizzis was taken away to be destroyed (destruction of evidence?) apparently because it was contaminated with nerve agent (although somehow the pair managed to enter through the door without contaminating it). And yet prior to this, Mr Skripal took pieces of bread in his hand, fed ducks with some, and gave other pieces to a group of young boys, one of whom ate a piece, but suffered no ill effects.

Three simple questions:

1. If Mr Skirpal was so contaminated that the table at Zizzis had to be destroyed, how come none of those boys were poisoned, particularly the one who ate the bread, since the duck feed happened before the visit to the restaurant?

2. Why is this incident absent from the Metropolitan Police timeline, despite the fact that they know it happened and when it happened?

3. Why have the media organisations that reported it not followed it up, especially given that it took over two weeks after the incident for the police to inform the parents of the boys?

The duck incident alone casts huge doubt on the idea that Mr Skripal’s hand was contaminated with “Novichok” prior to 13:45. As such, it calls into question the whole official narrative. Perhaps this is why it, along with many other events, has been disappeared down the Memory Hole.

7. It’s the wrong timeline

I mentioned above the timeline of events in Salisbury that day. There is a simple rule of thumb here, and it is this: if investigators cannot get the timeline right, you have every right to doubt that they have got other things right. If you were sitting on a jury, and the defence lawyers were able to show you that the police had not only missed important parts of the timeline out, but had in fact got the order of events wrong, you would be unlikely to convict, wouldn’t you? In fact, you would have a duty to not convict, since the prevalence of errors in the investigation would leave you with reasonable doubt about the case for the prosecution.

There are four basic problems with the Met’s timeline. Let’s look at them in ascending order of importance.

The first is that some of their timings are just plain wrong and — frankly — rather silly. For instance, according to The Met’s caption above the pictures of the two men coming into Gatwick Airport, they entered at 3pm. This is impossible, however, since the airplane they were on did not land until nearly 4pm.

The second is that some of their timings are inexplicably vague. For instance, in the timelines they released on 13th and 17th March (no longer on their website), the following was stated regarding Mr Skripal’s car on the morning of Sunday 4th March:

09.15hrs on Sunday, 4 March: Sergei’s car is seen in the area of London Road, Churchill Way North and Wilton Road.

So it was in three places at once? Why were they unable to be more specific, since the CCTV cameras would all have had timestamps?

I believe there was a reason for this, and once again it gives little confidence in the investigation. At the time that the initial timelines were issued, The Met issued appeals for information on the whereabouts of the Skripals that morning. The impression given was that the Skripals drove to the cemetery at around 9:15, and were then out for most of the morning, but their whereabouts was unknown.

Yet if you read the timeline carefully, and this order was also stated verbally by Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu, and if you couple this with a little local geographical knowledge, a quite different picture emerges. Both in Mr Basu’s statement and in the timeline, the order given was this: London Road, Churchill Way, Wilton Road. But this is not travel from the home to the cemetery; rather it is the opposite: from the cemetery towards the house.

In other words, the Skripals did not go to the cemetery at 9:15 or thereabouts; they actually came back home from the cemetery at that time. But if that’s the case — and it is strongly implied by The Met’s order of roads — why were they appealing for information about what the pair were doing on that morning? I submit that it was known all along that they were in the house from about 9:15 onwards, yet the reason it was not cleared up is that it presented something of a problem in terms of the allegations against Petrov and Boshirov. If those allegations were true, the Skripals would have been at home at the time, with the car in the drive. If it seems absurd that the assassination should be carried out in broad daylight, then this scenario makes it all the more so.

The third problem with the timeline is one I have mentioned above — the missing Duck Feed — and so there is no need to repeat the details of that here.

The final error in the timeline, and in my opinion the most egregious of all, is the order of events regarding the Skripals’ visit to the Zizzis restaurant and The Mill Pub. As I mentioned above, all of the early media reports, which were compiled after interviewing witnesses, agree that the Skripals first visited the restaurant, then went on to the pub. Here is a selection of those reports:

“Sergei Skripal went for a drink with his daughter at 3pm at The Mill in Salisbury after eating at a Zizzi Italian restaurant. In the pub, they ordered two glasses of wine before Mr Skripal went to use the toilet. The witness, who did not want to be named, said that when he returned he appeared as if he was drunk. He said Mr Skripal and his daughter Yulia then left immediately without finishing their drinks.”
https://www.pressreader.com/uk/daily-mail/20180310/281625305816856

“It is not clear when the Skripals were confronted, having left a branch of Italian restaurant chain Zizzi between 2pm and 3pm. After leaving the restaurant, they are thought to have gone to a nearby a pub called The Mill. They were then seen walking through a shopping precinct and found on a bench overlooking the Avon shortly after 4pm.”
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5473177/Woman-40s-taken-hospital.html

“The Skripals had eaten lunch in Italian restaurant chain Zizzi in the centre of Salisbury on Sunday. They are believed to have left between 2pm and 3pm and gone to a nearby pub called The Mill before being found later on a bench overlooking the Avon.”
https://www.standard.co.uk/news/uk/emergency-services-called-to-building-next-to-zizzi-restaurant-at-centre-of-russian-spy-poison-plot-a3784031.html

“A witness told detectives he saw a man with a black mask covering his nose and mouth acting suspiciously around 3pm last Sunday. At the time Mr Skripal and Yulia were thought to be in the Mill pub a few yards away.”
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5486163/Fears-Russian-spy-poisoned-bouquet-flowers.html

“Witnesses have said that after eating at Zizzi’s restaurant they went to the Mill pub where Mr Skripal appeared unsteady on his feet, as if “drunk” – even though he had only ordered a single glass of white wine – suggesting the effects of the nerve agent were rapidly taking effect.”
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/03/10/poisoned-police-officer-not-hero-just-job/

“Officers yesterday took CCTV from inside The Mill. They had gone into The Mill pub following a meal in a Zizzi restaurant.”
https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/5742937/cops-hunt-blonde-woman-seen-on-cctv-20-mins-before-ex-russian-spy-spy-sergei-skripal-and-daughter-yulia-were-poisoned/

“Steve Cooper, who was at the Mill pub with his wife and dog for a couple of hours last Sunday afternoon, told the BBC he was outraged. Some of his friends, who had been in the pub at the same time and seen Mr Skripal head to the toilet, could not remember what they had been wearing that day, he added. https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-43362673

When was Mr Cooper in The Mill? Here’s what he said in an interview with ITV:
‘We’d been sitting on the very bench at around 3pm and then moved onto The Mill Pub and left there at 4:45pm where we saw the air ambulance.’”
https://www.facebook.com/itvnewsmeridian/videos/1699234906804241/

“Mr Skripal and his daughter Yulia were believed to have been in Salisbury city centre from 13:30 GMT on 4 March. A witness told the BBC that he saw the pair in the Zizzi restaurant at about 14:00 GMT.”
http://web.archive.org/web/20180309174732/http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-43315636

There were other reports, but I trust you get the picture. Zizzis first, from about 2pm onwards; Mill second.

And yet for some inexplicable reason, the timeline released by The Met on 13th March, updated on 17th (no longer available on their website), reversed this order. Here is what it said:

13:40hrs: Sergei and Yulia arrive in Sainsbury’s upper level car park at the Maltings. At some time after this, they go to the Bishops Mill Pub in the town centre.

14.20hrs: They dine at Zizzi Restaurant.

15:35hrs: They leave Zizzi Restaurant.

On what basis has the cloud of witnesses been dismissed? What evidence does The Met have that those witnesses were wrong?

This is very serious stuff. An investigation that not only ignores the testimony of multiple witnesses, but without explanation gives an official version of reality that completely contradicts what these members of the public stated in all honesty is … oh what shall we call it? Orwellian? Yes, Orwellian will do, since in that great man’s dystopias, officialdom is always right — even when it is wrong and distorts and dismisses reality.

Quite simply, if investigators are prepared to leave crucial events out of their timeline, and mess with reality in others, as has been done, reasonable people not only have a right to disbelieve their conclusions, I would say they have a duty. Anything else is to invite the very future that Orwell taught us to fear.

8. The Impossible Door Handle 

The theory that Mr Skripal and his daughter were poisoned at the handle of his front door is impossible. I do not use that word lightly, and nor do I use it because of any fancy of my own. Rather, I do it because the official version of events, which tries to establish the door handle as the place of poisoning, actually refutes itself.

Much of what I’m about to say is a summary of what I have set out in more detail back here. But the basic points are as follows.

In the BBC Panorama programme, Salisbury Nerve Agent Attack: The Inside Story, much was made about the toxicity of the substance that has been called “Novichok”, and the minuscule amount needed to kill a person that comes into contact with it (As an aside, albeit an important one, there is in fact no such substance called “Novichok”. This is merely the name used by Western Governments for the group of chemicals that the Soviet Union was trying to create back in the 1970s and 80s. The reason this is important is that neither the UK Government or Porton Down have ever, to my knowledge, officially named the substance they say was used. Instead, they keep referring to “Novichok”, which as a definition is as broad and as loose as they want it to be). Here are the claims made in the programme:

“It’s very unique in its ability to poison individuals at quite low concentrations.” – Porton Down Professor Tim speaking about Novichok.

“The Russians called it Novichok. Thought to be 10X more toxic than any nerve agent created before or since.” – Jane Corbin.

“To kill a person, you need only 1mg. To be sure, 2mg.” – Vil Mirzyanov, who worked on the Foliant project.

“The Russians weaponised Novichok for the battlefield. The tiniest dose can be fatal.”– Jane Corbin.

“It’s difficult to say, you know, possibly into the thousands.” – Deputy Assistant Commissioner Dean Haydon when asked how many people could have been killed by the substance in the bottle.

This programme, which was clearly endorsed by The Met, since it featured the likes of Deputy Assistant Commissioner, Dean Haydon, wanted its viewers to know three things about “Novichok”: That it is extraordinarily deadly; that a dose of just 2mg is enough to produce certain death in a person; and that the two suspects had enough of the substance in their two bottles to kill 1,000s of people.

But the problem with this, of course, is that the people who allegedly became contaminated at the door handle, did not die. In fact, not only did they not die, but they spent the next few hours feeding ducks, eating a meal and going for a drink.

To square this particular circle, the BBC invited Mr Mirzyanov to give it his best shot. Here was his explanation:

“Maybe the dose was not high enough. Salisbury was rainy and muggy. Novichok breaks down in damp conditions, reducing its toxicity. It’s the Achilles Heel of Novichok.”

The first part of his answer is obvious nonsense. This is the same person who on the same programme claimed that just 2mg of “Novichok” is enough to be sure of killing a person. And given that Mr Skripal allegedly contaminated a number of places around Salisbury, including the table in Zizzis that apparently needed to be destroyed, we can be sure that had he been contaminated at the door handle, as the official line has it, the dose must have been far in excess of 2mg.

So it must be the damp conditions then? Er no. Not possible. Why? Well, I could point out that the “Novichok” would have been on the door handle for a maximum of 80 minutes (between 12:10pm and 13:30pm), and that during this time the weather was fine. The only thing it would have come into contact with would have therefore been the air, and it barely seems worth pointing out that it is beyond unlikely that a nerve agent apparently designed for the battlefield would degrade so quickly. And if it did, how likely is it that the chosen method of assassination would have been to spray such a substance on an exposed door handle in a country that is notoriously damp?

But there is something far more fundamental than this. Something that, as I say, makes the claim impossible. It is this: According to the Organisation for the Prevention of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), in a statement on 4th May:

“The samples collected by the OPCW Technical Assistance Visit team concluded that the chemical substance found was of high purity, persistent and resistant to weather conditions.”

So the BBC, backed up by officialdom, puts forth an explanation as to why the Skripals did not die, which is that the substance, of which 2mg is enough to surely kill someone, degraded so much in just 80 minutes due to the damp conditions that a dose far in excess of 2mg wasn’t enough to kill them. But cometh the OPCW, over 25,000 minutes later (on 22nd March), and what they apparently found was the same substance, but in a state of high purity and totally unaffected by weather conditions.

Do you now see the impossibility of this? The dose wasn’t too low. Mr Mirzyanov tells us just 2mg of the substance will surely kill. And it can’t have been degraded by the weather, because the OPCW found a substance that hadn’t been degraded by the weather.

There is no way of squaring this circle. No way of getting 2 + 2 to = 5 no matter how hard you try. It is impossible. Let me say that again, it is impossible. Let me repeat it one more time, just to make sure the point is made: The idea that Sergei and Yulia Skripal were poisoned by “Novichok” on the handle of his front door is IMPOSSIBLE.

9. The Silence of the Skripals

Yulia Skripal has been heard from a number of times. There were statements made in her name, there was the “interview” she did with Reuters, and there were the calls she made to her cousin, Viktoria. But all that stopped in late July, and in the last known contact she had with her cousin at that time, she apologised for having previously accused her of messing up her plans to return to Russia, saying that she now had access to the internet, and now understood everything.

Just pause there for a moment and think. Yulia Skripal wants to return to Russia? To the place where the people who ordered the attack on her father are in Government? Does she not understand what they did, and what they might do to her again if she were to go back?

Actually, one of my contentions is that she did not have any idea about what the British Government and Metropolitan Police were saying about the case in public until July. You can read a more detailed piece on why this is so here, suffice it to say that the only way to make sense of her rant at her cousin in early July, that she had messed up her chances of going back to Moscow by going on TV talk shows, and her subsequent apology later in July together with the comment that she had seen the internet and now understood everything, is that she wasn’t actually aware of what was being said in public before. Think about it: if the British authorities had told her she and her father had been poisoned by the Russian state, and that this had led to a huge international outcry, she can hardly have wanted to go back to Russia, and she can hardly have thought that her cousin was the reason she couldn’t return.

Anyway, since Yulia has not been seen or heard of since she “got the internet”, and since on many occasions she expressed the desire to return to her home, I’m afraid that until we hear otherwise, it is reasonable to conclude that she is not a free person.

But what about Sergei? Here, we have something even more interesting and obvious. When was the last time you saw Sergei? When was the last time you heard him? When was the last time you read a statement put out in his name? The answer to all three questions is you haven’t. He hasn’t been seen, nor heard from, nor so much as a statement put out on his behalf at any time since 4th March.

Isn’t this a tad strange? Yulia was allowed to speak. She was allowed to read out a pre-prepared statement to Reuters back in May. But not a peep from Sergei. Why not?

A big clue may well come from the BBC reporter, Mark Urban. In his book, he claimed that Mr Skripal was initially reluctant to accept that the Russian Government was behind the poisoning. He never got around to telling us whether Mr Skripal did eventually accept it, but I suspect not, since had he done so, I am quite sure that the authorities would have had him in front of the cameras, testifying to what had happened to him, essentially backing up the official story. But so far he has been silent.

But much more ominous, he has not been in contact with his ailing mother since before 4th March. We are talking about a man who was apparently in the habit of speaking to her once a week, and yet since March 2018, according to his niece, Viktoria, he has not contacted his mother even once. Why is this? If what happened to Mr Skripal is as the British authorities allege, what possible reason could there be for his not being in contact with his mother? It isn’t because his health won’t allow it. In a call to her cousin back in July, Yulia stated that although his voice was too weak to speak on the phone, he would be able to in a matter of days. And yet since then, nothing. Silence.

By itself, this of course proves nothing. Yet it is not by itself. It must be seen in the light of the other points made above. When we put it together with all those oddities, anomalies and impossibilities, I’m afraid that it looks suspiciously like the reason Mr Skripal hasn’t spoken to his mother, is that he is not allowed to. Like Yulia, until shown otherwise, it is reasonable to conclude that his silence is not a voluntary silence.

10. The lethal substance that can be treated with baby wipes

All the pre-2018 literature about the “Novichok” nerve agents leave us in no doubt about their toxicity. For instance:

“In 1982, the Soviets began a secret CW development program codenamed Foliant. The program had the apparent goal of developing new binary nerve agent weapons. Novichok has been described as a new toxic agent and it is very difficult to treat the poisoning (practically impossible; the toxicity was about ten times greater than VX agent).”

We even have the testimony of one of the substance’s creators, Vladimir Uglev (who is no friend of the current Russian Government, by the way), who gave the following account of what happened after he got a tiny amount of this agent on his hand:

“‘I rinsed my hands with sulfuric acid and then put them under tap water,’ he said, adding it was the only way to survive. Another researcher who was contaminated in 1987 died of multiple illnesses five years later [my emphasis].”

So the only way to survive is by taking action as drastic as rinsing your hands with sulphuric acid?

Now, remember in their report of 4th May, the OPCW said that the substance they found on the door handle of Mr Skripal’s house, which was apparently the same substance Mr Uglev got on his hands, was of “high purity”. When Mr Uglev got it on his hands, he knew he only had seconds or at the most minutes to wash it off — with acid — otherwise face certain death. And yet when Sergei and Yulia Skripal apparently got the same substance on their hands, nothing happened to them for hours and they went to feed ducks, eat a meal and go for a drink.

Can a rational person really believe that the substance Mr Uglev describes is the same one that apparently affected the Skripals? I don’t think so. And yet this is what those investigating the case want you to believe. This is odd, however, since Public Health England’s advice to Salisbury residents in March this year kind of gave the game away that it was not the same substance at all:

“Wipe personal items such as phones, handbags and other electronic items with cleansing or baby wipes and dispose of the wipes in the bin (ordinary domestic waste disposal) … Please thoroughly wash your hands with soap and water after cleaning any items.”

So the substance that one of its creators says needed to be washed off very quickly with sulphuric acid, and which another of its creators (Vil Mirzyanov) tells us that 2mg is enough to lead to certain death, can be dealt with by using baby wipes?

I’m sorry, but this is just bonkers. Imagine going back in time to pre-March 2018, and hearing an announcement that the armed forces were being protected against possible nerve agent attacks by being supplied with baby wipes. What would you have thought? You’d have thought that someone somewhere had lost the plot, wouldn’t you? And you’d have been right. Whatever those who were hospitalised on 4th March this year were poisoned with, it cannot have been the same substance that Mr Uglev describes, can it? And yet the official narrative says it was. Draw your own conclusions.

Conclusion

You will have noticed from the above that what I have not attempted to do, is to advance a theory of what happened on 4th March 2018. The reason for this is that I simply don’t know, and whilst I may have certain speculative ideas, I don’t know nearly enough to be certain of writing them down.

What I have done, is simply to take the claims made by the authorities, and subject them to the kind of scrutiny that I would have hoped our so-called free press might have done. And I believe that when a light is shone on these claims, the inescapable conclusion is that they are found wanting. They are full of holes, they don’t add up, and despite much trying, they can’t be made to make sense.

Even as I was finishing this piece off, yet another round of nonsense was unleashed; this time, the news that the roof of 47 Christie Miller Road (including the roof of the study) is to be taken off and replaced. Remember, we’re talking about a substance that can be cleansed with baby wipes. Remember, we’re talking about a substance that apparently breaks down after 80 minutes of exposure to the air. But 11 months later, it is again so deadly, that a whole roof needs replacing!

Of course the media is not bothering to ask the obvious questions about this action, such as:

How exactly could the roof timbers have become contaminated?
Who could have contaminated them? D.S. Bailey?
But why would he have been in the attic?
Why is the ceiling / roof in Zizzis not being replaced?
Why has the roof in The Mill not been dismantled?
What was really in the attic?

Obvious questions, yet none of them will be asked.

In conclusion, I think it abundantly clear that what we have been told about what took place on 4th March in the beautiful city of Salisbury is not, in fact, true. It is clear that something else happened, and much of what we have seen since then has been theatre and an attempt to cover up what actually took place. It is my earnest hope and prayer that the truth will soon be revealed.

“Justice is turned back, and righteousness stands far away;
for truth has stumbled in the public squares, and uprightness cannot enter.
Truth is lacking, and he who departs from evil makes himself a prey.
The Lord saw it, and it displeased him that there was no justice.”
(Isaiah 59:14-15)


Postscript: Some of the commenters on this site are setting up a new forum to continue sharing information on the case in the future. When that site is up and running, I will post a short piece pointing people towards it.

As I have said, it is my intention that this will be my last piece on the case. However, that comes with the caveat that if there are any other major developments, I may well decide to write about them. Amongst other things, I will probably also be writing from time to time about events and issues that may well be connected to the Salisbury case, such as the so-called Integrity Initiative, which the British media doesn’t seem to have heard about yet. But for now, That’s All Folks.

January 9, 2019 Posted by | Deception, False Flag Terrorism, Timeless or most popular | | Leave a comment

Integrity Initiative Infiltrated Bernie 2016 Campaign, Attacks Corbyn

goingunderground | January 9, 2019

Chris Williamson MP discusses the new Integrity Initiative leaks revelations including the organisation infiltrating Bernie Sanders’ campaign, it’s efforts to influence the entertainment industry and it’s attacks on Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party.

January 9, 2019 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Timeless or most popular, Video | , | Leave a comment