UK has no proof of Russia’s role in Skripal poisoning - Page 32 - Politics | PoFo

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Since the beginning of this thread at the end of March what have we learned....
Two Russians "tourists" go to Salisbury for a few hours in total on two consecutive days. They visit nothing and go nowhere except they are caught on CCTV a few hundred metres from Skripals home on the weekend that the Skripals are poisoned.
These Russian "tourists" have return tickets to Russia for two consecutive days.
That is evidence that Russia could of been involved in the poisoning of the Skripals.
anarchist23 wrote:Since the beginning of this thread what have we learned....

We have learnt that...

Boris Johnson aka the 'Pound-shop Trump' wrote:There is one thing that is absolutely certain about throwing a dead cat on the dining room table – and I don’t mean that people will be outraged, alarmed, disgusted. That is true, but irrelevant. The key point is that everyone will shout, ‘Jeez, mate, there’s a dead cat on the table!’ In other words, they will be talking about the dead cat – the thing you want them to talk about – and they will not be talking about the issue that has been causing you [the government] so much grief.


... no patients have experienced symptoms of nerve agent poisoning in Salisbury

Steven Davies - Consultant in emergency medicine (GMC membership number 4122151) Salisbury NHS Foundation Trust, March 14 2018.

To quote Davies in full:

The Times, 16 Mar 2018
Sir, Further to your report (“Poison exposure leaves almost 40 needing treatment”, Mar 14), may I clarify that no patients have experienced symptoms of nerve agent poisoning in Salisbury and there have only ever been three patients with significant poisoning. Several people have attended the emergency department concerned that they may have been exposed. None has had symptoms of poisoning and none has needed treatment. Any blood tests performed have shown no abnormality. No member of the public has been contaminated by the agent involved.
Stephen Davies
Consultant in emergency medicine, Salisbury NHS Foundation Trust ... -p5hmpj8jh

Obviously saying the report that 40 needed treatment was misleading; but the 3, then (the 2 Skripals plus the one police officer) were poisoned.
Prosthetic Conscience wrote:To quote Davies in full:

The sense of the letter is ambiguous and open to interpretation.

In other words, my reading is as valid as yours.


Salisbury District Hospital declared a “major incident” on Monday 5 March, after two patients were exposed to what is believed to be an opioid. The fire service was called to decontaminate the hospital’s Accident & Emergency unit, as paramedics treated the casualties.

Response Unit Called As Salisbury Hospital Declares “Major Incident, Mar 05. 2018

* My emphasis.

What they said before they realised it was Novichok (which has, of course, been confirmed by independent testing) is irrelevant. No, your interpretation isn't as valid. The way you cut the quote off to leave it out of context is one reason why; here's another:

The letter has been the subject of a fair amount of speculation, since the phrase “may I clarify that no patients have experienced symptoms of nerve-agent poisoning in Salisbury”, appeared to many to be somewhat cryptically stating that nobody — not even the three people mentioned — had been poisoned by a nerve agent.

I have now managed to get in touch with Dr. Davies, and he has very helpfully given me clarification. He has told me that The Times edited his letter, and that this produced a misleading message. Furthermore, he confirmed to me that the three patients mentioned in his letter “were poisoned with a nerve agent, confirmed by blood tests and symptoms.”

So I guess that clears that point up. But it would have been nice for The Times to clarify their error. ... the-times/

Are you actually trying to argue that it wasn't Novichok at all?
Prosthetic Conscience wrote:Are you actually trying to argue that it wasn't Novichok at all?


The Porton Down analyst (CC) who gave evidence to the high court which heard the blood sample application said the analysis of the Skripals blood indicated exposure to a nerve agent or related compound (para 17 of the judge’s report).

It seems Porton Down, world leaders in chemical weaponry, were not able to tell if the substance was a nerve agent or not.

* My emphasis.

Tests carried out by Defence Science and Technology Laboratory at Porton
Down concluded that they had been exposed to a nerve agent.
Blood samples from Sergei Skripal and Yulia Skripal were analysed and the
findings indicated exposure to a nerve agent or related compound. The samples
tested positive for the presence of a Novichok class nerve agent or closely
related agent

They know it was a nerve agent. The test indicates it's either in the Novichok class, or something closely related. Blood is active; you aren't necessarily running all the molecules through something that can identify every single molecule in the blood, as they were at the moment the poisoning occurred. So that's why it's "or closely related agent".

Wow, you really want spend your time claiming they weren't even exposed to any nerve agent? It's as if you have to distract from the known evidence, and the obvious stuff like the Russian pair walking away from the tourist attraction they implausibly claim they wanted to see and to the Skripal house instead.
Prosthetic Conscience wrote:They know it was a nerve agent. The test indicates it's either in the Novichok class, or something closely related. Blood is active; you aren't necessarily running all the molecules through something that can identify every single molecule in the blood, as they were at the moment the poisoning occurred. So that's why it's "or closely related agent".

Wow, you really want spend your time claiming they weren't even exposed to any nerve agent? It's as if you have to distract from the known evidence, and the obvious stuff like the Russian pair walking away from the tourist attraction they implausibly claim they wanted to see and to the Skripal house instead.

No one is taking him serious at this point anyway.
Prosthetic Conscience wrote:they weren't even exposed to any nerve agent?

If they were exposed to 100 times the fatal dose, how come they are not dead?

BBC News, Russian spy poisoning: Watchdog backtracks over Novichok amount, 4 May 2018 wrote:The OPCW later said the amount should have read "100mg".

Charlie Rowley told his brother the glass 'perfume bottle' that supposedly contained the agent broke in his hand. He, presumably, would have received a larger dose and yet he lived. You cannot say, it's because the agent was old and degraded; the OPCW noted that the chemical was of "high purity".

It doesn't add up.

anarchist23 wrote:the same BS that was in the Charlottesville

Whether they were tourists or not, there is no evidence they went to the Skripal house.

No CCTV, no witnesses, no forensics, no evidence.

layman wrote:Bellingcat

Facial recognition software Pictriev gives the faces a 75% similarity, putting the probability of them being the same person at approx. 2.2%.
Image, which runs industry standard software, gives the faces an 83% similarity, putting the probability of them being the same person at 2.8%.


Both show that novichok 'tourist' Ruslan Boshirov is not GRU Colonel Anatoliy Chepiga.

Incredibly, at 13.15 on 27 September, BBC TV News ran the story showing the two photos of “Boshirov" side by side and did not show the photo of Chepiga at all!


Last edited by ingliz on 30 Sep 2018 20:59, edited 1 time in total.
ingliz wrote:If they were exposed to 100 times the fatal dose

Closer to 1000 times the fatal dose would be nearer the mark given the OPCW figure of 100mg. It appears that both the UK government and the tacky BBC spy drama 'Strike back' got it wrong.

It is even more poisonous than they imagined.

The LD50 of Novichok agents is reportedly approximately 0.22 mcg/kg* similar to 2-(dimethylamino)ethyl N,N-dimethylphosphoramidofluoridate (VG), a novel, fourth-generation nerve agent.

Peter R. Chai et al, Novichok agents: a historical, current, and toxicological perspective. Journal Toxicology Communications, Volume 2: Issue 1, 2018.

* Agents in the V-series are up to 100-fold more toxic than those in the G-series [tabun (GA); sarin (GB); and Soman (GD)].

Skripal case: Israeli expert on the work of the special agents
An Israeli expert on international terrorism, writer Alexander Brass, shared his view on the case of the Skripals poisoning in Salisbury. Brass draws parallels between the work of the special services of Israel and Russia – he believes that if to compare the British version with the practice of the special agents, then the absurdity becomes obvious.

“Alexander, so what, in your opinion, happened in Salisbury?”

-There was a rough provocation by the British special services. In my opinion, this is obvious.

– Why do you think so?

“There’s a lot of stupidity on stupidity.” The story with Petrov and Boshirov does not hold up any professional peer review. According to the Brits, the Skripals were poisoned by GRU agents (this is what the department is called, although this is now the Main Directorate of the RF General Staff).

I want to explain how the special services work. If you need someone to eliminate, then this is a very serious operation, which is being prepared for a long time. A very significant material and human resource is allocated. We are talking about dozens of employees. On the territory of this state, an “advanced command post” is being created.

In the operation, a technical support group, a logistic group, a cover group, an external surveillance group and a group of performers are involved.

The performers themselves appear at the very last moment. They do not go anywhere, lighting up on cameras, do not use public transport, but move on rented cars, which they do not rent themselves. And the more they will not stop in hotels, but will live on safe houses provided by the logistics group.

Such groups do not come under the passport of their country, do not go to the embassy for obtaining a visa, leaving fingerprints. This is complete nonsense. Professionals do not work that way.

If the GRU acted, both the killers and the other participants in the operation would come to the UK on the passports of other countries that have visa-free relations with it. Here, two alleged GRU officers go to the embassy, ​​leave their fingerprints there, get a visa, stop at the hotel, pass under all the cells. This you will not find even in ladies’ detective novels.

– Maybe it is unprofessionalism associated with the degradation and decay, which after the collapse of the Soviet Union took place in all structures and institutions of society, including in the special services? Lost skills, methods, no one to teach young people. There is such an opinion.

– This is an opinion at the level of kitchen conversations. Where did the armed forces and the military-industrial complex of the Russian Federation manage to raise such a “bardak” to such a level as they could organize the World Cup and the Olympics at such a high level? The GRU has always been and remains one of the most professional and most intelligent intelligence agencies in the world.

If the GRU decided to eliminate Skripal, then I have a question: why was the “Novichok” used? This is not a remedy, it’s a chemical weapon of mass destruction. It’s like dropping an atomic bomb on a city to kill one criminal. When special services eliminate an object, they always try to do it so that no autopsy shows that he was poisoned.

– Can you give examples?

– I can give many examples. In 1978, the well-known international terrorist Vadia Haddad, one of the founders of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), was killed. “Mossad” did not take responsibility for this, but sewed in a bag you can not hide. A potent biological poison was mixed with chocolate. Within three months he died of a painful and incomprehensible illness in the GDR clinic. His autopsy was conducted at the University of East Berlin. No trace of poison was found. The doctors assumed that he died of leukemia.

– How did you know that he was killed by Mossad?

– Information about this began to leak a few years ago. It came from Algeria. One of the former Mossad agents during another trial gave evidence that he witnessed how this happened, calling the specific names of the performers. This man also confirmed that he was a participant in this operation. This information was also confirmed by other, non-overlapping sources.

– Were there any cases when the Mossad operation ended unsuccessfully and the enemies of Israel were still alive?

– Take the last unsuccessful attempt of the Israelis to kill Khaled Mashaal, one of the leaders of the terrorist organization Hamas. He would have been killd if he had not been given an antidote at the last minute.

Everything happened on September 25, 1997 on one of the streets of Amman – the capital of Jordan. Just some passer-by, who was next to Mashaal, “accidentally” stumbled and splashed the liquid from the can of Coke to his neck. The next day Mashal would have died of a heart attack, and no traces. But the performers were seized on the spot. After that, the King of Jordan Hussein demanded that Israel provide an antidote, and in return promised to release Israeli agents.

– That is, substances that leave no traces are not detected by expertise and imitate death from the disease, the secret services have long been known?

– That’s it. Could the GRU not have been able to use some other poison, and not the “Novichok”, which leaves traces everywhere? If such technologies were in the special services already in the 1950s, do not the GRU have them today?

Let’s talk about the cameras. The UK on this some kind of fad. In no country in the world there is such a number of surveillance cameras per capita.

If I’m not mistaken, about one camera for 15 people. Literally every meter is looked through. MI5, the British counterintelligence service, is considered one of the best in the world. And if Britain took care of Skripal, he was very well guarded. At least his house was hung with all the cameras, which are only possible.

If, according to MI5, these agents visited Salisbury, they came to the house of Skripal and coated the door handle with this substance – so show the records from the cameras! How can it be that it was at this point that the cameras suddenly turned off?

“But maybe these agents found the cameras and turned them off?”

“If you say that the GRU has deteriorated so badly that it has lit up everywhere and left its mark, why did this degraded intelligence agency manage to turn off the surveillance cameras near the Skripal house at the right time?” Where is the logic?

– When our agents killed the Chechen terrorist Zelimkhan Yandarbiyev in Qatar, they got caught and were captured by the local police. True, they carried out the task …

“And how many Israeli agents were arrested?” This does not mean degradation. I do not know what happened after the collapse of the USSR in the GRU, but I know what happened in the Foreign Intelligence Service, since I had been friends with one of the very high-ranking officers of this service for many years in retirement. We had very close, friendly relations with him for many years. Unfortunately, he died a few years ago.

He told me that the degradation of the special services is only an appearance. He retired, because he already had years of service and he did not agree with the mess that was going on in the country. But there was no mess in the secret services! Who wanted to – left. But was there a leak of information? Have they discovered an agent network? Agents of Soviet special services worked all over the world. Have any of them suffered? No one. The mess can be anywhere, but not in the special services.

– Let’s admit. All this really looks strange – first let out Skripal, then kill him. Would not it be easier to just leave him in jail?

– Now about the personality of Sergei Skripal himself. The main version, which is voiced by the British side, is revenge. But in special services there is no such thing as revenge. Neither the Israelis, nor the Russians. Only the Cubans had it. We must understand that the special services are a very practical organization. Why revenge? A person is eliminated only when he can cause real harm. The Skripal has already done harm. He could not do more harm.

– For example, as a lesson to other potential traitors, no?

– No. I once asked my acquaintances who worked in your special services (I have never had any contact with active staff, only with retirees): “Why did not Kalugin be killed?” And they answered me with a counter question: “Why haven’t you eliminated the defector? “I said: he has already done harm. To eliminate him, it is necessary to develop a very serious operation, to send people, people should risk their lives. For the sake of what – for the sake of revenge? They say: “For the same reason, we do not touch Kalugin and do not touch anyone.” Israelis are not even exterminated by former terrorists. At the moment when the terrorist stops terrorist activities, regardless of what he did before, he is left alone. The only ones who were persecuted to the end were Nazi criminals.

– There is an opinion that he was eliminated because he taught at the counterintelligence school and taught young employees how to deal with the GRU.

– And what, in MI5, except for Skripal, no one knows how to do it? I think they know it better than him.

– In such cases, there is a very simple practice. When Skripal was taken on treason, he probably was intelligibly explained: either you go to life imprisonment and you will be in solitary confinement somewhere beyond the Arctic Circle, or you will receive 12 years of strict regime in the European part of Russia. But for this, you must fully tell what you have handed over, and give evidence. To cooperate with the investigation.

Similarly, when the former colonel of the Defense Intelligence of Israel’s Defense Intelligence Department, I did not name him, went into business and got into debt.

He went to Lebanon to buy heroin and conduct a drug deal, and was captured by Hezbollah. He told everything he knew, inflicting enormous damage to Israel’s defense capability. Because he was an officer on this site, he worked for Lebanon.

The Israelis exchanged him, they pulled him out. He was told: let’s make a deal. You will not be prosecuted. But you must thoroughly, in every detail, tell what you told them. We need to know what they know. The same was with Skripal. And there was simply no need to eliminate him.

– So there was no motive for Russian special services?

– There was no motive. Then, imagine: they used “Novichok”, they carried it with them in a bottle from under the perfume. In the practice of special services this does not exist. Performers go light, with other people’s passports. They receive weapons on the spot. And when such a group of liquidators works, it works autonomously, without affecting the local residency. In case of failure, do not harm the residence. When the surveillance is working and the capture team is working, they do not know each other in person, they communicate only through certain communication channels.

– The question is also why the poison did not act instantly, and Skripal was still wandering about for a few hours.

– It’s a different matter. The British are so disrespectful to Russia that even provocation can not be done at a decent level. It’s even humiliating. Therefore, Russia does not comment on this in any way. And why is it necessary to comment on some kind of nonsense?

It took half a year to Brits to find the “suspects.” Although they left their full personal data and fingerprints in the embassy when they received visas. This is a separate nonsense. Then Russia said: please! Here they are, here’s their interview. If they were active GRU officers, they would not have left their fingerprints in the embassy for anything.

“Who are they?”

– I do not know who they are, but certainly not employees of special services. If the GRU needed to kill Skripal, he would now be dead. This would have been done quietly and without scandal.

“Why Britain needs this?”

– This is a well-thought-out strategy of demonization and international isolation of Russia. In the UK, as in the rest of the Western world, everything works very simply. Most people do not read newspapers at all. And those who read, do not understand half. But everyone sees the headlines. Provocation with the Skripals is needed to exclude the Russian Federation from the Commission for Investigating the Use of Chemical Weapons in Syria. This is a minimum program. ... 9.facebook
Sivad wrote:I'm sure the UK government is calling it witsec but there's no way to verify that. The UK security state could be holding the Skripals under duress, it's not like it's something it wouldn't do. Pretending that the UK government doesn't have a long track record of deceit and manipulation is what's tediously idiotic. Your obtuse mentality doesn't change the fact that the government is unreliable and untrustworthy. What you're doing here in this thread isn't just boring, it's also extremely dishonest.

Repeatedly asking where they are, as if it was suspicious that their location isn't known, is what's tedious and stupid. Keeping the whereabouts of the Skripals secret is completely in line with what one would expect from the UK government if this was an assassination attempt by Russia.

ingliz, which runs industry standard software, gives the faces an 83% similarity, putting the probability of them being the same person at 2.8%.

I tried this and for the two images Murray compared I get almost the same result (84% similarity).


Then I played around with other images.

Passport photo from 2003 (alleged) and from 2009: 85% similarity.

Photo released by UK police and image from recent RT interview: 87% similarity.

Photo released by UK police and passport photo from 2009 (Craig Murray says these two are undoubtedly the same person): 89%.

Not sure what probability the slightly higher percentages translate to, but I doubt they are impressive enough so as to inspire confidence.

I'm also unsure when we have started to consider face recognition as superior to humans, especially since we are looking at different ages, b&w vs colour, different angles, different light conditions and different image quality.

Link to Betaface demo is somebody else wants to try this.
Kaiserschmarrn wrote:Repeatedly asking where they are, as if it was suspicious that their location isn't known, is what's tedious and stupid.

Their physical location is not the issue. The issue is independent skeptical journalists don't have access to the Skripals. The state has only provided extremely limited access to state approved establishment media outlets . That's good enough for the babbitts and the state knows it doesn't need to sell 'the reality-based community' on its narrative because there just aren't enough people grounded in reality to matter politically. Consensus reality is a joke.
Rugoz wrote:This thread is just one big fat embarrassment for the conspiracy nutters.

Is this just another coincidence?

The country’s leading experts in Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear warfare were staging a mock chemical attack in the Salisbury area, the same day the Skripals were poisoned.

March 6, 2018 -The three-week exercise included company-level attacks and various CBRN scenarios based on the latest threats for ultimate realism, such as a raid on a suspected chemical weapons lab.

It climaxes with a full-scale exercise involving government and industry scientists and more than 300 military personnel, including the RAF Regiment and the RM Band Service – casualty treatment was a key part of the Salisbury Plain exercise.

A chemical decontamination area was set up not merely to treat ‘polluted’ commandos, but also any wounded prisoners they may have brought in; once cleansed, casualties can be treated in field/regular hospitals…. ... l-exercise

Feb 20, 2018 – 40 Commando Royal Marines and The Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) have staged the UK’s biggest annual exercise to prepare troops for Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRN) operations. Exercise TOXIC DAGGER is supported by Dstl, along with Public Health (PHE) and The Atomic Weapons Establishment (AWE), and is the largest exercise of its kind in the country.

Specialists in CBRN from Dstl and AWE are able to create realistic exercise scenarios based on the latest threat information. ... al-warfare

Note: Both the government and the navy mix and muddle past and present tense in these press releases.

Rugoz wrote:conspiracy nutters.

"If the mainstream ideas about what constitutes “conspiracy theories” were to be believed, “We would be allowed to understand natural phenomena and open actions, openly arrived at. And we might even treat ourselves to unintended consequences provided these did not involve secret plotting. But we would be officially blind to covert actions and secret plans.” Only when a plot was openly acknowledged would it become an acceptable idea. “Again it is worth stressing just how catastrophic the strategy of conspiratorial skepticism would be if we applied it consistently, rather than using it from time to time to get out of political difficulties or to rubbish allegations that we find inconvenient,” writes Pigden, “But epistemically disastrous as conspiratorial skepticism would be, its political consequences would be catastrophic. For when it comes to conspiracy we would be both officially blind and officially incurious.”

If I am right, the conventional wisdom on conspiracy theories is not just misguided, but absurd. For it implies an epistemic principle that flies in the face of history and would be politically catastrophic if put into practice. It would blind us to the machinations of torturers and scheming politicians, and would convert a large part of the political realm into a chaos of incoherent effects whose causes were beyond the reach of rational enquiry.

Of course, this is not an unfortunate outcome, but by design. The idea that any idea too critical of the ruling class should be automatically disqualified is extremely appealing to the ruling class. Anti-communist intellectuals Karl Popper and Richard Hofstadter popularized the idea of “conspiracy theorism,” and their idea found so much support since it was used to delegitimize Marxist governments as driven by “conspiracy theories,” and thus identical to Nazism. It was given a further boost by the CIA in the 1960s—even the oh-so-knowing serious folks on concede that the “crackpots” are supported by academic evidence that the label “was deliberately deployed by the CIA.” Conspiracy theory as it’s used today does not mean an evidence-free, insane idea; rather, any idea the ruling class wants placed outside of the realm of consideration. That’s why powerful apparatchiks like David Cameron and Cass Sunstein publicly mull some kind of state sanction for those they label “conspiracy theorists.”

Ultimately, the average conspiracy theorist has a better grasp of how the world works than the average liberal. Even the most outlandish “conspiracy theory” in existence—that people like George W. Bush and Queen Elizabeth are shape-shifting, extra-dimensional reptilians—is closer to the truth than what liberals believe. The reality is that the ruling class and its public servants really do have a parasitic and predatory relationship to the vast majority of humanity; if anyone should be laughed at and publicly excoriated for their wacky ideas, it’s those who think Hillary is su abuela and Barack Obama is a nice guy who would enjoy hanging out with them." ... conspiracy
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