Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
April 06, 2018

The Best Explanation For The Skripal Drama Is Still ... Food Poisoning

Doctors at the Salisbury District Hospital announced today that Sergej Skripal's health is rapidly improving. He and his daughter Yulia will likely be well again.

It is unlikely that any targeted poisoning with a real 'military grade' nerve agent would have allowed for such an outcome. This brings us back to food poisoning as a possible cause of the Skripals' ordeal.

A friend of this blog, Tore, sent us his considerations which we publish below. He suggest that shellfish poisoning, which is caused by a neurotoxin known as Saxitoxin or STX, is the real culprit of the Skripal incident. He explains how this would fit to the observable behavior of the British government and other participants in the drama. In my view his theory has significant merit.   

On Wednesday the niece of Sergej Skripal, Viktoria Skripal, received a phone call from Yulia Skripal. She was interviewed by a Russian TV station and suggested that food poisoning might have been the real cause of the calamities her relatives were in:

“Did they eat a dish that one cannot eat, or is it banned in England?

"The first signs when they were found were very similar to fish poisoning.”

Victoria intended to visit the UK and to bring Yulia back home to Moscow. The United Kingdom just rejected Victoria Skripal's visa application because she "did not comply with the immigration rules." No further explanation was given.

For those who have not read our previous posts on the issue we offer a short recap of the case. Regular readers may want to scroll down to Tore's part.

Sergej and Yulia Skripal were found on a public bench in Salisbury at about 4pm on March 4. They had collapsed, were conscienceless and were brought into emergency care at the Salisbury District Hospital. Local media wrote of a potential Fentanyl overdose.

Half an hour before the Skripal's collapsed they had eaten at Zizzi, a seafood and pizza outlet.

Over the next days the British government started to make a fuzz about the case. Sergej Skripal was a British spy who had been caught in Russia, put into jail and, in 2010, exchanged for Russian spies. The British government hinted of Russian involvement in the Salisbury incident.

But that story smelled fishy from its very beginning. To target an exchanged spy would guarantee that no further exchanges would ever happen. Sergej Skripal had links to the "dirty dossier" about Donald Trump that was created for the Hillary Clinton campaign. Russia had no good motive, others potentially had one. If there was something nefarious going on it seemed unlikely that Russia was involved.

I now believe that the British government jumped onto the case because it needed to divert attention from the seriously bad results of the Brexit negotiations in Brussels. There are local elections coming up in May and Theresa May's Tory party was lagging in the polls. (There may have been additional reasons related to a planed 'chemical weapon' surprise in the east-Ghouta campaign in Syria.)

Whatever it was - the spin-masters in Downing Street 10 saw a chance to convert the poisoning of the Skripals into something big that would help their political aims. The general push was to blame Russia. The idea to speak of the fearsome nerve-agent 'Novichok' came from a spy drama that had just run on British TV.

On March 12 the British Prime Minister Theresa May spoke in Parliament and claimed that the Skripals were 'attacked' with 'Novichok', a "military grade nerve agent of a type developed by Russia". It was her "45 minutes" moment. Russia was declared guilty without any evidence. Britain and other NATO countries expelled Russian diplomats.

'Novichok' is a name for a group of chemicals that are indeed deadly. But Russia never had a 'Novichok' program. It had worked on a different class of chemicals than the ones described in Vil Mirzayanov's 'Novichok' book. Moreover, if 'Novichok' chemicals were involved than Russia was only one of many suspect. The formulas for 'Novichoks' are known, various military laboratories have made some and any decent organic chemistry laboratory can create them too. The U.S., which had produced some of the 'Novichok' agents for itself, had long told its diplomats to avoid any discussions about them.

The first serious unraveling of the dubious case came on March 18 when a doctor at the Salisbury District Hospital publicly denied that any of its patients had been hurt by a nerve agent. We wrote at that time:

Commentator Noirette had suggested here that the Skripal case was about food poisoning or a food allergy, not nerve agents. The Skripals had visited a fish restaurant one hour before they were found. The letter points into a similar direction. Food poisoning would also explain why a doctor who gave emergency help to the unconscious Yulia Skripal for over 30 minutes was not effected at all.

To my best knowledge none of the main stream media picked up on the doctor's letter.

Then a miracle happened. On March 29, just in time for the Roman Christian Easter, the doctors in Salisbury said that Yulia Skripal was no longer in a critical condition. We headline: Last Act Of 'Novichok' Drama Revealed - "The Skripals' Resurrection":

It seems that the 'Novichok' fairy-tale the British government plays to us provides for a happy ending - the astonishing and mysterious resurrection of the victims of a "military grade" "five to eight times more deadly than VX gas" "nerve agent" "of a type developed by" Hollywood.

Happy Easter!

The alleged nerve agent should have killed anyone who came even into slight contact with it. Survival did not fit to the earlier claims by the British government.

Now, just in time for the Orthodox Christian Easter, the condition of Sergej Skripal is reported to be rapidly improving. Another Resurrection! Hallelujah!

In my view all the stories we were told about 'Novichok', the 'doorknob' or a 'Russian attack' are fairy tales. They simply do not make sense.

Commentators of this blog, Noirette, TomGard and others, had discussed several theories of food poisoning. Food poisoning makes sense but none of the ones discussed here fitted the picture of the case. Last week Tore, a friend of this blog from Norway, sent me his theory which makes eminent sense to me.

---
Tore writes:

Craig Murray's described the pressure on Porton Down to establish that a nerve agent was used in the alleged Skripal attack. I use 'alleged attack', because there is a fair chance that this was no attack, only a serious food poisoning from the very start.

The Skripals had a seafood risotto pesce with king prawns, mussels and squid rings at Zizzi, as reported here in the Daily Mail on March 6.

This is a dish with a well known reputation as a source of shellfish poisoning.

The Skripals were okay when they arrived, okay when they left, and passed out 40 minutes later on the bench with symptoms similar to a paralytic reaction from shellfish poisoning (PSP):

Symptoms of PSP could begin within a few minutes and up to 10 hours after consumption.

Symptoms of PSP can include:
...
...
Respiratory difficulty, salivation, temporary blindness, nausea and vomiting may also occur.

In extreme cases, paralysis of respiratory muscles may lead to respiratory arrest and death within two to twelve hours after consumption. Seriously affected people must be hospitalized and placed under respiratory care.

Another official PSP Fact Sheet (pdf) provides:

What is the treatment?

Unfortunately, there is no antidote for PSP toxins; however, supportive medical care can be life saving. For example, persons whose breathing muscles become paralyzed can be put on a mechanical respirator and given oxygen to help them breath, and people who develop a cardiac arrhythmia (abnormal heart rhythm) can be given medications to stabilize their heart rhythm.

The similarity with symptoms and effect derived from a nerve agent are striking, but no surprise:

In fact the substance at work in a case of paralytic seafood poison is a neurotoxin called Saxitoxin (STX) which is among the most potent poisons found in nature. It works the same way as a nerve agent: It acts on the neurons, preventing normal cellular function and leading to paralysis and in worst case death. In fact Saxitoxin is so potent that it was weaponized by the U.S. and used as a chemical weapon - a nerve agent.

The U.S. developed Saxitoxin into a chemical weapon in the 1960s. The U.S. military designation is TZ. It was also used by the CIA for covert operations and liquidations as evidenced by the Church commission - see: Excerpts of CIA inventory 1, 2.

Serotoxin is registered by the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) as evidenced in the Wikipedia article Saxitoxin. The agent stays active even after boiling or steaming.

Now back to Porton Down and the pressure to come up with the 'traces of a nerve agent'. The Saxitoxin could obviously pass as a nerve agent, because it is a nerve agent - but without mention of its origin - the food poisoning.

The nerve agent claim was released by police on March 7, three days after the incident.

According to the Daily Mail article mentioned above, the hospital alarmed the police the day after, on March 5, when the staff became aware of Skripal's 'spy credentials', probably through BBC which first brought the news. This means Porton Down at the most had two days from first tests to the conclusion 'nerve agent' announced on the 7th.

This also implies that the hospital probably treated the Skripals for a food poisoning from the start, until they became aware of Skripals credentials the day after. This fits with the letter to the Times from Stephen Davies, the hospital doctor.

(The timeline used above is from the Associated Press' Key moments in the case of former spy Sergei Skripal.)

The media storm had been going on for a week when Theresa May on March 12 entered parliament and announced the 'Novichok'. The blame had been on Russia from the first moment.

Speculation:

Now suppose the government in the meantime had become aware they had a weak case from the start - because they had rushed Porton Down to a premature conclusion?

There would be no way back for May. The die had been cast. The government had walked out on a limb from the start, now they had to continue the theater by naming the agent.

No nerve agent would suit their narrative better than 'Novichok'. Developed in USSR, a substance with some foggy features and many variants - as opposed to other more well known agents with distinct features. And most important an agent that is not listed in OPCW and which was deliberately chosen to confuse. [b adds: 'Novichok' was also known to the British and U.S. public as a 'fearsome Russian agent'  through a current spy drama on TV. It increased the propaganda value.]

The initial reluctance to involve the OPCW also fits into this picture: the decision to involve OPCW came after May had landed the Novichok claim in parliament on March 12.

The day before, on March 11, police found traces of a nerve agent in the Zizzi restaurant.


Note that the police inside is unprotected - bigger

Did they find the mussel in the risotto? Or 'Novichok'?

More than three weeks into the investigation this is, as far as I know, the only confirmed police find of traces of the nerve agent. Zizzi fits in perfectly as the origin of the poisoning considering the 40 minutes it took before the Skripals passed out on the bench. Though I wonder how a "military grade nerve agent", destined to kill instantly on the battlefield, took that long to incapacitate the Skripals.

I am no doctor, nor a specialist in chemistry - only a retired journalist working with open sources. There are so many curiosities with this case, so many speculations, ...

Here in Norway we have an expression called blodtåke - best translated as blood fog - when all the media are rushing blindly in one direction, without asking the most elementary questions.

After I wrote this they found 'Novichok' on the door of the Skripals' home, which makes it even more unlikely, considering the time frame.

Did they have to divert attention from the restaurant as origin of the poisoning?

There are of course some holes in the above - just regard this as an idea to go along the line of food poisoning.

End of Tore's deliberations.
---

b here:

Tore's theory of food poisoning with Saxitoxin makes sense. It is a fitting explanation for what happened in Salisbury and for the murky tale the British government tries to sell.

(update)

Commenters noted that the theory does not immediately explain what happened to Detective Sergeant Nick Bailey, who was also treated in the hospital but less severely effected than the Skripals. Off-Guardian noted on March 23:

It was announced today that Detective Sergeant Nick Bailey – allegedly the third victim of the alleged “nerve agent” poisoning in Salisbury, UK – has been released from hospital.

Bailey did not speak to the press, and no photographs or film of him leaving the premises and going home have yet emerged.
...
Where Bailey was poisoned, and how he was poisoned is still not clear – which is puzzling of itself. Was it while attending the Skripals as a first-responder, as claimed by Theresa May (improbable on the face of it, since CID officers in Britain do not act as first-responders). Or did he, on the contrary,“have no direct contact with the Skripals”, as put out by the Daily Mail? Was he poisoned while searching the Skripals home? Or was it somewhere else entirely?

And why did he become poisoned when no one else at the scene, and indeed no one else anywhere in Salisbury fell ill, or even showed signs of contamination in their bloodwork?

If Bailey was on the scene on Sunday afternoon, it was likely not because he was on duty, but because he happened to be in the area. Did he have a private lunch? At Zizzi's?  With mussels? We do not know and the government won't say.

(end update)

One of these days the Skripals, Nick Bailey, the doctors at the hospital, or some of the people at Porton Down will talk and let us know the truth.

The Zizzi website says that the restaurant in Salisbury is still - four and a half weeks after the incident - "temporarily closed". If it served healthy food and the Skripals were really poisoned by touching a doorknob at their home why would that still be the case?

But do not take off your tinfoil hat just yet.

If Saxitoxin was the cause of the Skirpals' illness, the story has still potential for a decent spy drama. Was the poison in the mussels Zizzi's served of natural occurrence, or had someone at the CIA rummaged through its old inventory? Who applied the dosage?

In another message Tore notes that there is a foreign member in the British Joint Intelligence Commission which advises Downing Street:

Ever since World War II, the chief of the London station of the United States Central Intelligence Agency has attended the JIC's weekly meetings.

These connections might yet bring us back to Skripal's participation in the 'dirty dossier' about Trump which MI6 agent Chris Steele prepared for the Hillary Clinton campaign. The U.S. and the British intelligence services under Clapper and Brennan waged a war against then candidate Donald Trump. They did not want him to win the election under any circumstance. Were the Skripals late casualties of this fight?

But no. I would not trust that story any more than I trust the British government's current tale.

Another possible explanation, more likely that the election manipulation mentioned above, is a false flag incident solely created to incriminate Russia. It would be a reproduction of the 1994 Operation Hades, a highly propagandized case made up by the German spy service BND to incriminated Russia with a (faked) plutonium smuggling case.

Then again - if it looks like food poisoning, Occam's razor says, it might just be that - food poisoning.

The Skripals' beloved animals though, were admittedly killed by the British government. The Skripal's should sue the responsible persons to hell for committing this murder and for lying about its circumstances.

---
Previous Moon of Alabama reports on the Skripal case:

March 8 - Poisioned British-Russian Double-Agent Has Links To Clinton Campaign
March 12 - Theresa May's "45 Minutes" Moment
March 14 - Are 'Novichok' Poisons Real? - May's Claims Fall Apart
March 16 - The British Government's 'Novichok' Drama Was Written By Whom?
March 18 - NHS Doctor: "No Patients Have Experienced Symptoms Of Nerve Agent Poisoning In Salisbury"
March 21 - Russian Scientists Explain 'Novichok' - High Time For Britain To Come Clean (Updated)
March 29 - Last Act Of 'Novichok' Drama Revealed - "The Skripals' Resurrection"
March 31 - Hillary Clinton Ordered Diplomats To Suppress 'Novichok' Discussions
April 3 - Operation Hades Blamed Russia - A Model For The 'Novichok' Claims?
April 4 - It's The Cover-Up" - UK Foreign Office Deletes Tweet, Posts False Transcript, Issues New Lies
April 5 - Novi-Fog™ In Fleet Street - Truth Cut Off

Posted by b on April 6, 2018 at 04:59 PM | Permalink

Comments
« previous page

The seafood explanation does not account for "Novichok" being in the recently ended Strike Back TV series, which was before the Skripal incident. It also doesn't explain why the TV series which was to end it's run last year, suddenly was split in two, so that it could end this year, much closer in time and therefore in memory for the viewers to the Skripal incident.

Posted by: TJ | Apr 7, 2018 4:55:34 AM | 101

100
b. step back. Because people thought of it first it is unlikely. May, the conservative party, London don't want to make Russian capital insecure.

Someone forced them and US sanctions on Russian oligarchs are the way to look.

Posted by: somebody | Apr 7, 2018 5:10:16 AM | 102

@Piotr Berman 97

"...Polish government is barking mad or batshit insane...."

Adds little to discussion. It only indicates INGRATITUDE of a Polish Jew for the country that took his ancestors in when other European countries were kicking them out like a plague.

Posted by: Fiar Ockham | Apr 7, 2018 5:13:40 AM | 103

From b |96

After 12 hours, regardless of severity, victims start to recover gradually and are without any residual symptoms within a few days (Bower et al, 1981, ILO 1984, Halstead 1988).
This would imply, the Skripals would had recovered, or nearly recovered, when the "nerve agent" narrative was first brought up on March 7th. It would follow, that either the Porton Down analysis is completely bogus and so would be the OPCW-data to come, or the Skripals, like DS Bailey, were poisoned with a nerve agent by British agents acting as medical staff.

That renders the food-poisoning story completely irrelevant, exept for the history of premeditation of the false-flag attack.

Posted by: TomGard | Apr 7, 2018 5:14:51 AM | 104


It could easily be one of those movies where the late Peter Sellers played multiple parts. Unless you're too young, or otherwise unfamiliar with the genre, just close your eyes and think of Sellers costumed as both Skirpals, PM May, UK Village Idiot Laureate Boris Johnson, etc.
Alec Guinness, or maybe one of the Pythons, could play the hapless public-relations flack Porton Down spokesperson. I don't even see it as a stretch.
Posted by: Ort | Apr 6, 2018 10:51:32 PM | 58

You cant leave out Sellers playing multiple representatives of the Superconcentrated Corporate Media engine, acting in concert without a critical thought amongst them...and then later, completely disappearing, nowhere to be found, except for the usual comedic deafening silence upon the moment the singular narrative turns to shite.

94 Ghostship
Points well taken especially with regards to the will of Corbyn. Though, should this be a simple case of food poisoning, to me it would strongly suggest that both government and media have been fed a broken narrative from the outset designed to discredit.

Posted by: MadMax2 | Apr 7, 2018 5:26:57 AM | 105

US posing conditions on UK-US trade after BREXIT.

Posted by: somebody | Apr 7, 2018 5:30:30 AM | 106

Days ago, before the poisoning theories surfaced, I read at Sputniknews Yulia's first statement was "it didn't taste like chicken."
Posted by: Likklemore | Apr 6, 2018 9:21:21 PM | 52

Are you sure about that? I saw that claim, but on some blog not on Sputnik and I understood it to be the blog-owner's sarcasm. A search produced no Sputnik page with that quote - on the contrary a claim that the menu choice had not been released. Some UK Newspapers claimed they ate the seafood but this could easily be deliberately planted misinformation.
Skripals' Last Restaurant Order Not Released by UK, Niece Tells Russian TV - Sputnik International

Posted by: BM | Apr 7, 2018 5:39:10 AM | 107


Saxitoxin which can be produced in shell fish has similar effects as nerve agents https://emergency.cdc.gov/agent/nerve/tsd.asp

Considered in syndromal or functional terms it could therefore be considered a 'closely related agent' to an organophosphate based nerve agent. It is listed alongside OP agents as a nervous system agent here: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/ana.21072

Also see here https://emergency.cdc.gov/agent/saxitoxin/casedef.aspCase
Definition: Saxitoxin
Clinical description
. In severe poisoning, illness typically progresses rapidly and may include gastrointestinal (nausea, vomiting) and neurological (cranial nerve dysfunction, a floating sensation, headache, muscle weakness, parasthesias and vertigo) signs and symptoms. Respiratory failure and death can occur from paralysis (1-5).

So accordingly, shellfish poisoning could be consistent with this: "The samples tested positive for the presence of a Novichok class nerve agent or closely related agent."
When 'closely related agent' is understood as pertaining to a syndromal classification rather than a chemical group.

Posted by: NS | Apr 7, 2018 6:03:23 AM | 108

Having read only about a third of the commentariat, what has been obvious to this point is the food poisoning theory is appearing to be another echo chamber. Even global warming is not enough to overcome the adage of only eating shellfish caught in months having an 'R', like in MaRch (though this may not apply in the Russian language - having no familiarity with Russian). Are those suggesting those alleged shellfish were caught the prior August? Unlikely. There are two separate metabolisms, differing stomach contents, body masses, and body compositions (fat components) in addition to differing ages and sexes. What would the likelihood that food poisoning would happen at a similar moment with both?

Again the most likely cause would be a voluntary ingestion of some street drug by both victims, such consumption isn't something rarely known, even in those parts of the world. No evidence has been presented to either substantiate or disprove this, nonetheless this provides the simplest vehicle for the two as well as a possible vector for the Detective Sergeant poisoning as a first responder. Recall this happened on a Sunday afternoon, the DS has not been established to be on duty that day or not; either way the presence of trained CPR personnel would have resulted in the same response, going to aid persons in distress - no mystery that. I suspect the time of recovery of the affected had a lot to do with the rate of clearance of the substance from the bodies of the victims to levels difficult to detect. Again supposition and conjecture seem to rule the public dialogue, and evidence is remarkably missing still. YMMV

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Apr 7, 2018 6:07:32 AM | 109

i think they settled on the bench to enjoy an after lunch chocolate bar, but the chocolate wasn't so innocent. in fact it was the confounded novichoc itself, which my intrepid investigations have revealed is mass produced in northern Italy.

and clearly the good sergeant who found them couldn't resist the half bar lying on Yulia's lap, had a little nibble, and slipped the rest into his pocket.

jesus, this whole escapade is enough to give Italian food a bad name!

Posted by: john | Apr 7, 2018 6:10:44 AM | 110

++ Joseph Magill #22. That is one of my surmises too. She just picked up a bundle of cash from her deceased brother's estate too as I read somewhere. There is no doubt a price to pay to take the cash back to Russia and for wee bit of play acting she could stay with the dad in UK. Perhaps she will get a job with SCL/Cambridge Analytica too. All surmise though. When I last checked May and her manbag Boris have finally lured Jeremy Corbyn into the sights. I guess that was one of the intentions all along and well worth any price for them.

Time will tell.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Apr 7, 2018 6:14:30 AM | 111

Listening to lies , propaganda for many, many years as soon as I heard the Skripal affair I smelled the rat-false flag. Governments unfortunately kill, lie.

Here I see unnecessary provocation which could lead to war, as it was unfolding in Syria. We are all in danger from stupid politicians.

Posted by: Friar Ockham | Apr 7, 2018 7:04:12 AM | 112

Those gerbils should be autopsied to make sure they didn't die from some sexual perversion. It is Britain after all.

Posted by: par4 | Apr 7, 2018 7:49:19 AM | 113

|@ 73 VietnamVet | Apr 7, 2018 12:46:39 AM

Like you, I distrust what has been presented (or the lack of evidence). However, rather than resorting to some theory of conspiracy, something else, much easier, can be seen. If you watch the broadcast images of 'activities' at the various scenes, notice how much of the activity is choreographed to camera, as if 'White Helmets' were on stage, some doing something over there, others moving one way, others going somewhere else, others standing about, ready to go on stage and do their assigned parts, all activity caught on camera lens to 'inform' the viewer of some 'message'.

What are not seen are the scriptwriter, the producer, the director, the camera and tech crews, and most importantly, the editors. There is precious little worth watching anywhere that hasn't that production cast at work to convey some message and all to often in a form to elicit some emotional response from the viewer even as simple as convincing the viewer of the scene's veracity. Ask yourself, just how much 'product' found on YouTube worth watching does NOT have this production cast behind the presentation - precious little other than shaky shots of supposed UFOs. I recommend holding off on some conspiracy to illuminate what has happened until there is evidence that backs such speculations. Again YMMD.

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Apr 7, 2018 8:18:15 AM | 114

The phone call made by Yulia Skripal only intensifies the ongoing intrigue.
Firstly, as I understand it, Yulia made the call to her cousin Victoria at 10:30am on the 5th April. At 14:00pm on the same day the Met Police released a statement 'on behalf' of Yulia Skripal on the met police website. (Essentially, this statement says she as better and thanks the hospital and asks for privacy). At 15:05 BST Russia-1 transmitted on a live news programme Yulia and Victoria's call. Moscow is 2 hours ahead of British Summer Time, which means the phone call was transmitted at 13:05 UK time, 55mins before Met Police released their statement……
Secondly, how did Yulia make this call? During the conversation between Yulia and Victoria, Victoria asks, “So this means they gave you a telephone?” Yulia replies – “Yes Yes Yes”. Later in conversation, Victoria asks “is this your telephone?” Yulia replies, “It’s just a temporary, you know” Victoria replies, “Got it”. Was Yulia’s phone provided by officials or was it borrowed/stolen from a nurse or a doctor? If not officially provided, does that explain the Met Police statement 55mins later, rather than hours or even days before? In fact initially, UK’s reaction to the transmission on Russian television was to brand the call a fake!
Thirdly, during phone call, Yulia says her father is “ok, everything is OK, he’s resting now, he’s sleeping, everyone’s health is OK, and I’m being discharged soon”. Only after this call is widely published, does the “hospital” announce with an uncharacteristic TV news statement that Sergei has also miraculously regained consciousness.
Fourthly, Victoria says “if I get my visa tomorrow, on Monday I will fly to you”. Yulia replies “Nobody will give you a visa”, Victoria says “when asked if I’m able to see you, I need you to say Yes” Yulia replies after some pause, “Well, I think No… the situation right now is ….” . Victoria is obviously trying to get Yulia to say the word Yes, but Yulia won’t. Why? How does Yulia know Victoria’s visa would be rejected, why would she not say yes?
We know that Yulia is the daughter of a former KGB spy, apparently also Victoria’s late father was a general in the KGB. These are clever girls who know the routine and have probably been bought up in an environment which makes them thoughtful and cautious. In addition, using a temporary phone and remembering her cousins number, is probably not that easy a task. In this modern age of mobile phones, no one needs to commit numbers to memory, like we used too. But Yulia, it seems, has.
In short, the British Govt. has been on the back foot with this phone call and its aftermath. Reacting to events, instead of dictating them. I’ll bet some doctor or nurse is in in deep trouble for either allowing Yulia to use a phone or ‘loosing control of their’ phone.

Posted by: bigthinker | Apr 7, 2018 9:20:01 AM | 115

bigthinker |117
Well thought :)
I want to add, hospital staff was under gag order til March 28, according to british paper reports. Then, on the 29th, came the first ever statement of Dr. Christine Blanchard, medical Chief of Salisbury hospital, announcing that Yulia is concious and better.
On April 6th Dr. Blanchard supported Met's announcement of indefinite detention of the patients but crossed, at least for Yulia, the supposition, or better threat of long term damages, especially brain damages, peddeled every day by Met and British Government.

I also think, we got an example of very brave resistance and disobedience.

Posted by: TomGard | Apr 7, 2018 9:44:24 AM | 116

Interesting article at the Guardian regarding some Russian police case files relating to the 1995 murder of Ivan Kivelidi using a Soviet-era nerve agent. Nothing state-related, this was purely a Russian mafia hit.

Apparently someone by the name of Boris Kuznetsov defected to the Brits in 2007, bringing those case files with him. And, apparently, the Guardian has now seen those case files.

Lots of stuff in the article, but this in particular leapt out at me: "Leonid Rink, a former employee of the chemical weapons facility, admits in case files seen by the Guardian and first reported by Reuters to enlisting a scientist to develop a batch of the nerve agent in his garage and sell it to an organised crime group. He was caught before the murder of Kivelidi, but the nerve agent was later used in the killing."

Let these words sink in: In. His. Garage.

It simply isn't true that only a state actor can produce these nerve agents, because Rink conjured some up in his garage.

It simply isn't true that only the Russians know how to produce these nerve agents, because in 2007 Kuznetsov handed over detailed analyses of at least one of these nerve agents to.... the British.

Posted by: Yeah, Right | Apr 7, 2018 10:05:35 AM | 117

Posted by: Yeah, Right | Apr 7, 2018 10:05:35 AM | 119

Yep, I noticed that, too. Also there is a US patent for Novichok antidote.

All those "experts" interviewed by the media are there for an agenda. Which they torpedo by being so transparently inept.

"Novichok" was obviously chosen because it sounds so Russian and because it is not on the lists of the CWPC.

Posted by: somebody | Apr 7, 2018 10:16:43 AM | 118

@Posted by: bigthinker | Apr 7, 2018 9:20:01 AM | 117

I’ll bet some doctor or nurse is in in deep trouble for either allowing Yulia to use a phone or ‘loosing control of their’ phone.

If that would be the case, it would be another scandal for the Britons, since putting a recently conscious patient in contact with its relatives, is not only an obligation for any medical worker in charge of tha patient in question, but also part of the accuarate and legally framed, health care...

The supposed doctor or nurse just is fullfilling its oblogations with respect of patient´s rights and well being, which is what must worry them most.

After all, neither Yulia Skripal nor her father are under arrest of any kind by the British government....or are they? And, even i nthe case of arrest, they have the right to make a call...

Posted by: Fatima Manoubia | Apr 7, 2018 10:23:17 AM | 119

@Fatima Manoubia

You have already been blocked by several other websites. You can obviously not refrain from posting long off topics and pissing on the blog administrator. On more such comment and you will be blocked here too.

@Friar Ockham - same goes for you.

Posted by: b | Apr 7, 2018 10:49:00 AM | 120

@bigthinker @115

yea, I came up with the same scenario.

It seems obviously that the Skripals are now "held" by HMG.

Some of the first reports said they were put into artificial coma. That is a normal procedure but the question is usually for how long? A few days may be reasonable but for weeks? Yulia sounds quite wired in that phone call. Are the Skripals under threat? What story have they been told?


Posted by: b | Apr 7, 2018 10:54:34 AM | 121

UK food recalls
https://www.food.gov.uk/enforcement/alerts

No seafood recalls for the Skripal time period. Would there be a requirement for doctors to report several cases of severe food poisoning to a relevant food authority? If so, this would have occurred before the novichok narrative got underway. On the other hand, would severe cases of poisoning by other chemicals also be reported to a relevant authority?

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Apr 7, 2018 11:05:04 AM | 122

@121 Got to wonder what sort of pressure the hospital staff are under to keep quiet. They must have family and friends too. That's where the truth will come out sooner or later.

Posted by: dh | Apr 7, 2018 11:18:08 AM | 123

Russia appears to take the Yulia/Victoria phone call as genuine. Russian security monitoring/recording Victoria's phone 24/7, this being an international incident?
Did a doctor or other medical staff help Yulia get hold of a phone? There was the doctors letter to the Times so the medical staff there may have some ethics. But then both Skripals were unconscious at the time of the court hearing over taking blood samples?

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Apr 7, 2018 11:21:06 AM | 124

It always comes down to money! Viktoria has been refused a visa because of non-compliance with immigration rules, which the BBC reports as her failure to have sufficient resources in her bank account. Compassion clearly has no place in the rules. She has been outmanoeuvred. British bureaucrats may be pretty useless at most things, but how to frustrate the individual is meat and drink to them.

Posted by: Shakesvshav | Apr 7, 2018 11:34:59 AM | 125

I don't know which direction public opinion is moving in the UK and in Europe generally, but where I live in the good old US of A, there seems to be little doubt that the official narrative is correct. It is important to note that Big Media in the U.S. have, right from the start, been pounding the Russiagate/stolen election business tirelessly, so one would expect them to continue on the same path, which inevitably leads to Putin's Russia as the source of all evil. From what I can gather on MoA and elsewhere, the British press does not appear to be any better, and is possibly even worse.

Posted by: Rob | Apr 7, 2018 11:39:52 AM | 126

This "story" has completely gotten away from May & Co. Having the Skripals be subjected to an assassination attempt, as the story goes, under the nose of a senior detective minder yet leading to not a single suspect and exceedingly sloppy investigation was embarrassing and curious enough. Then the extreme rush to not accusation but verdict, when direct evidence was clearly minuscule and repeated statements that there was no other possibility at all when a six year old could come up with half a dozen. A fantastically perplexing motive for Russia while pooh-poohing multiple, strong motives for the CIA and at least two organizations filled with semi-retired spooks all actively working with Skripal.

They might have pulled it off, though, had they stuck to the script and had the Skripals conveniently died. I think the story really turned for the less attentive public when they tried to strengthen their case by doctoring the door knob. Seriously? Regular people might not be following Syria and captured operatives and spy-swaps, but anyone who has opened a door could immediately see that a poison door knob is pure Hollywood, NOT an actual reliable assassination method under the given circumstances. It was the first part of the "story" that was literally impossible to have been true, and everyone could see it. Hell, there must have been 100 cops grabbing that door knob before it was seized--what hospital are they in? I am beginning to believe that, just as the Novichok element was lifted straight from a TV show, when the government started panicking because allies started demanding to see the (probably previously promised) "irrefutable evidence" of Russia's involvement, they literally had nothing until some mop-head remembered reading a "Snoop Like a KGB Agent" magazine he'd read on the internet which mentioned poisoning door knobs. So back to the door they ran to doctor the door and show that, this time for sure, Russia MUST have done it.

Now it's moving from farce to disaster for the Brits, as the OPCW has become involved and have already signaled they will not be willing to cast blame on Russia even if they identify a poison, Yulia managed to clandestinely get a phone call home which raises many, many logical, legal, and ethical questions--and now someone forgot to feed and water the damn pets!! Holy shit! This may very well be un-recoverable.

Posted by: J Swift | Apr 7, 2018 11:56:03 AM | 127

i tend to agree with @85 old microbiologist... this certainly looks like a false flag operation.. this doesn't discount the food poisoning theory, but it seems the whole thing was baked and ready to go from the onset..

i don't think the uk recovers from this.. i think boris loses his gig and i think theresa may can hang on, but it is a limp gov't moving forward... meanwhile it is impressive how this story has pushed the cambridge analytica/scl story right off the radar..between that corp and the steele dossier - i guess people needed a temporary diversion..

Posted by: james | Apr 7, 2018 12:26:50 PM | 128

I smell Bill Browder's foul stench. He has been skulking around the margins of this affair from the get go, trying to rally more support for additional sanctions and punative measures against Russia from EU members. The official reaction from the start was way over the top, and reminiscent of the MO Browder used in the Magnitsky affair.

Posted by: the pessimist | Apr 7, 2018 12:35:48 PM | 129


For folks not familiar with the Wade Davis [a Richard Schultes student] account of a puffer fish incident in Haiti, a decent description is here:

From the Archives: The Secrets of Haiti’s Living Dead--A Harvard botanist investigates mystic potions, voodoo rites, and the making of zombies.

Posted by: erichwwk | Apr 7, 2018 12:43:37 PM | 130

Peter Sellers in various roles!ha!The mouse that roared!
The Americans are perplexed.The nyt wapo cnn msnbc are maybe be on board,but thinking people are not.

Posted by: dahoit | Apr 7, 2018 12:43:38 PM | 131

Were there any other incidents of food poisoning reported before or after the Skripal's sickness?

Posted by: offshoreguy | Apr 7, 2018 12:50:14 PM | 132

PARALYTIC SHELLFISH POISONING INCIDENTS
29th January 2018
http://www.eastern-ifca.gov.uk/paralytic-shellfish-poisoning-incidents/
"Testing carried out by the Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas) found high concentrations of PSP toxins in starfish (1,500 micrograms [PSP] per kilogramme of tissue tested) and dab (566 [PSP] per kilogramme of tissue tested) connected with the incident at Cley.
Very high concentrations were found in starfish (15,000 to 22,000 micrograms [PSP] per kilogramme of tissue tested) and partially digested shore crab (2,500 to 3,500 micrograms [PSP] per kilogramme of tissue tested) connected with the incident at Felixstowe Ferry.
To put this into context, the EU Regulatory maximum level for PSP toxins permitted in live bivalve molluscs is 800 micrograms [PSP] per kilogramme of tissue tested."

"Recent analysis of bivalve mollusc and water samples, collected through the Official Control monitoring programme, have been negative for PSP and the algae associated with PSP production in the UK (Alexandrium spp.).
Testing last week on a variety of marine species, including brown/edible crab, spider crabs, shore crabs, velvet swimming crabs, dab and whelks from North Norfolk and Suffolk, have revealed low levels of PSP toxin in some of the samples and no PSP at detectable levels in others. PSP Toxins around the regulatory limit for bivalve molluscs were found in one sunstar starfish."

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Apr 7, 2018 1:00:49 PM | 133

Re the post Posted by: NS | Apr 7, 2018 6:03:23 AM | 108

Correcting a URL, to connect one to the CDC entry for

"saxitoxin"

Posted by: erichwwk | Apr 7, 2018 1:06:03 PM | 134

Pardon me if I'm missing something, but as I follow this compelling discussion a basic nagging question surfaces:

The discussions about the fateful doorknob and the various "traces" of toxins, chemicals, whatever along the Skipals' route that day seem to regard these reports as fundamentally reliable and credible. But doesn't all of that information come from suspect, dubious, and/or compromised official sources?

As we've seen in similar geopolitical criminal mysteries, e.g. the MH-17 downing and the "doping" scandal in sports, in this century it has become clear to anyone capable of rational skepticism that even so-called "independent", ostensibly neutral and disinterested technical organizations (state and international) are willing participants in the governments' infoganda and cover-up.

The conventional spin is that "scientific" investigation is above, or outside, base fraud, deceit, and the skulduggery inherent in politics. But, as with so much else, this noble concept has long since been degraded and perverted to extinction; nowadays, "science" is fixed around the power elites' agenda, just as "facts" were fixed around the heinous decision to wage an illegal war of aggression against Iraq.

I again cite the cinematic term "MacGuffin", popularized by Alfred Hitchcock: "an object, event, or character in a film or story that serves to set and keep the plot in motion despite usually lacking intrinsic importance".

L'affaire Skirpal has accumulated an entire prop department's worth of MacGuffins. The last I heard, police (?) actually removed the door entirely, knob and all. Like the pets, it may also have (allegedly) been incinerated by now.

Such is the fate of MacGuffins, once their true purpose is achieved. So why do we credit official reports about the presence of weaponized chemicals on the doorknob or anywhere else?

Posted by: Ort | Apr 7, 2018 1:52:46 PM | 135

White helmets bullshit?

Yulia’s phone call with her cousin leads me to believe that the Skripals were participants, not victims.

With that said, the description of what happened to the animals is suspect. They could be with the Skripal’s.

Sargent Detective Nick Baily’s illness is probably faked. It was never well explained to begin with. A UK causualty was probably deemed important for the public’s emotional buy-in.

White helmets connection is this: it appears that a CW false flag was planned to occur in East Gouta. The apparent attack on the Skripal’s was timed to coincide. Embarrassing the Russians into silence would allow for an attack To punish Assad for CW use.

After this “last ditch” attempt to alter the outcome of the Syrian war failed (because SAA took East Gouta), Trump makes statement that he wants to leave Syria. Until he made this statement he seemed to be fine with the strategy of occupying part of Syria (despite his campaign promises).

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Apr 7, 2018 2:00:25 PM | 136

In the mid 1960's, the military had in operation devises that would test for the whole gamut of then available chemical weapons within about five minutes - done manually, by hand. Within half a decade, small portable, battery powered pumps did away with manual pumping, presumably reducing both fatigue and time to obtain results. To suggest Porton Down needed weeks to produce the same information strains credibility to breaking point. The only reason they could not find the place of manufacture of the substance is either they were that source of nerve poison, or there was no nerve poison. Perfidious Albion at its best!

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Apr 7, 2018 2:06:49 PM | 137

The accounts of how DS Nick Bailey became unwell,supposedly, aren't consistent. Was it at the bench or at the house or somewhere else? If it isnt a reliable part of the story then citing it as an objection to the food poisoning theory doesn't work.

Posted by: NS | Apr 7, 2018 2:10:14 PM | 138

Although DS Bailey would seem to be the third person referred to in the 18th March letter to the Times from the head of emergency medicine, Salisbury Hospital. presumably..

Posted by: NS | Apr 7, 2018 2:22:04 PM | 139

Biomedical samples have been collected from Police Officer. The report will be transmitted to UK and access to the report will be sbject to agreement of UK pursuant to confidentiality annex of the Convention https://www.opcw.org/fileadmin/OPCW/EC/M-57/en/ecm57dg01_e_.pdf

Posted by: NS | Apr 7, 2018 2:49:34 PM | 140

"This is a dish with a well known reputation as a source of shellfish poisoning."
--------
I guess we need an enterprising journalist to ask the hospital if they had any other cases of food/fish/shellfish poisoning that day .....

Posted by: Cat Pillar | Apr 7, 2018 3:06:41 PM | 141

Public Health England issued an advisory/alert o the poisoning re washing clothes, collection of clothes.
https://www.gov.uk/government/news/public-health-england-statement-regarding-events-in-salisbury

No alerts or recalls have been issued for seafood. nothing listed at the link, and the search function brings up nothing.
https://www.food.gov.uk/enforcement/alerts

Taking in the careful wording of the initial Porton Down statement, the doctor's letter (the policeman being the third person), the PHE advisory, it seems likely that the Skripals were poisoned with a chemical that is not considered a nerve agent but similar mode of action or symptoms... and rather than a totally inept assassination attempt, the doctors accurately diagnosed the toxin far faster than expected?

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Apr 7, 2018 3:07:00 PM | 142

Posted by: bigthinker | Apr 7, 2018 9:20:01 AM | 115

This here is Viktoria Skripal according the New York Times on the meaning of the phone call. I think I agree.

“You heard her — the phone she’s using is temporary, and at the end the line strangely cuts out,” she said. “I think they’ve asked her to call me and give a specific statement.”

The walled off hospital stay has several possibilities

a - protection and privacy - waking up in a hospital in the middle of a media storm and a diplomatic crisis must be a nightmare
b - getting their version on what happened before anybody can influence them
c - keeping Yulia in the country as long as possible - she does have a fiance in Russia
d - keeping Sergej in the country as long as possible - he has no family members left in Britain

Is Yulia in contact with her fiance?

Posted by: somebody | Apr 7, 2018 3:34:08 PM | 143

somebody |143

So, what was the message of those directing the call? "Hello, Moscow, we keep Yulia in detention"?

You have to do better for the money.

Posted by: TomGard | Apr 7, 2018 3:48:09 PM | 144

Ort |135

It's a McGuffin, okay, that's prette clear. So, what is the plot?

Posted by: TomGard | Apr 7, 2018 4:02:00 PM | 145

Vad jag har hört i förbigående om maten de åt på Puben så hade de beställt den på puben förbjudna, Japanska dödligt giftiga fisken so bara får tillagas av särskilt utbildade kockar som troligtvis inte arbetar på en pub i London. Det är naturligtvis en dyr ovanlig fiskrätt, om den överhuvudtaget finns att få lagligt i London.

Posted by: Börje Nilsson | Apr 7, 2018 4:09:04 PM | 146

144 That Skripals are well and don't want visitors?

That is GB's problem - that legally they have to give the Russian embassy access.

They solve it by saying that Skripals don't want to have that. That is possible but they will have to prove it.

Of course, Skripals are cooperating. What else would be in their interest?

Posted by: somebody | Apr 7, 2018 4:18:13 PM | 147

The initial hypothesis was that the Skripals had taken or were exposed to fentanyl. This was covered extensively in local media and initally by the MSM on March 4 and 5.

Posted by: Anonymous | Apr 7, 2018 4:30:54 PM | 148

How does the food poisoning hypothesis explain the poisoning of the policeman? Did he eat some leftovers when he visited the Skripal's house? Did he sample the same food as the Skripals at Zizzi's?

Posted by: Anonymous | Apr 7, 2018 4:35:10 PM | 149

If indeed S has contributed the Steele dossier
And if indeed he had been reactivated by his alma mater
That would put the Dems in the abyss! Just speculating...

Posted by: Mina | Apr 7, 2018 4:39:58 PM | 150

150

Well, Steele is under pressure to name his sources.

If Skripal was a credible source that would be reason enough to kill him.

Posted by: somebody | Apr 7, 2018 5:10:08 PM | 151

Just how many of those fine upstanding sovereign states sending Russian diplomats home are members ICC? Can the ICC name unindicted co-conspirators as well? Do not treaties have the effect of law? Does ignoring and abrogation of international treaty unilaterally without notice amount to a violation of law? Can the ICC issue show cause to members signing the international treaty founding ICC on complaint of another member also signatory to that treaty? Whatever will the UNSC do then? Implode?

Some interesting times - these.

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Apr 7, 2018 5:13:13 PM | 152

Actually, reading up on who Skripal is and what he did - he presumably did not "blow the cover of Russian spies" but knew a hell of a lot of people in the Security Services who would be inclined to do side jobs for other intelligence services for money. He seems to have had no problem to move in London's Russian expat community meaning he did not harm anybody.
So if Steele had sources it was presumably Skripal who procured them.

Which would make his life very dangerous indeed but not from the Russian side.

Posted by: somebody | Apr 7, 2018 5:29:26 PM | 153

add to 153 - The New Yorker on Christopher Steele

A longtime friend of Steele’s pointed out to me that Steele was in a singularly unenviable predicament. The dossier had infuriated both Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump by divulging allegedly corrupt dealings between them. “You’ve got oligarchs running both superpowers,” the friend said. “And, incredibly, they both hate this same guy.”

Posted by: somebody | Apr 7, 2018 6:27:02 PM | 154

Keeping Bailey completely out of the public eye is both suspicious and clouds the investigation. Did he perform mouth to mouth on one or both victims?

As someone suggested earlier, a paient released from the hospital under conditions like this would stand before reporters and thank all the doctors and nurses for their excellent care.

The hospital staff has certainly been made to keep quiet. Were they threatened with the Official Secrets Act?

Why, after a month, has not a single leak come from anyone at all?

Posted by: Bart Hansen | Apr 7, 2018 6:48:01 PM | 155

@ 129 "I smell Bill Browder's foul stench."

Agreed. And I always considered this to be the strongest argument that Russia does not, in fact, go around assassinating everyone who does it wrong, because if they did surely this truly evil worm would have been squashed long ago.

Posted by: J Swift | Apr 7, 2018 6:51:46 PM | 156

@155 Nick Bailey is far and away the weakest link in the government narrative, certainly from the moment it was leaked that he fell ill in the Skripal home.

Because if he fell ill at the home then that's where the Skripal's were poisoned, which means that this is a "military-grade" and "deadly nerve agent" that leaves the victims untouched for hours, and then strikes like clockwork regardless of the physiology of the victims or their level of exposure.

Which is, of course, a nonsense. Nonsense that makes the govt story impossible to believe.

My hunch is that Bailey was somewhere around that park bench (was he their minder? was he tailing them?) but for whatever reason it became imperative that this not be known, and so the story of his illness was moved to the house. But moving his story to the house introduced new inconveniences which the Brits are having serious problems squaring away.

All we know of Bailey is a single photo of him in uniform and a single written statement from him on his release from hospital.

Apparently he has never had a presence on social media, has no neighbours, friends or relatives that the press can talk too, and in short has never made the slightest imprint in the entirety of his existence on planet Earth.

He just.... is.... and no member of the press seems to find that in the slightest bit.... odd.

Posted by: Yeah, Right | Apr 7, 2018 7:24:30 PM | 157

The performance the UK gave at the UN Security Council was interesting as the woman kept referring to it as a weapon of mass destruction. She implied again that multiple people were poisoned by this attack with a weapon of mass destruction. Has anyone but the three been identified as being poisoned by this weapon of mass destruction?

Posted by: Ed | Apr 7, 2018 10:17:13 PM | 158

The best explanation is that it is simply yet another hoax from beginning to end; the end yet to be determined.

Posted by: BigTim | Apr 8, 2018 12:05:46 AM | 159

Just when you think the British government's story is about to fall completely apart, who is it that comes to the rescue ? None other that the "White Helmets" reporting on a chemical attack in Eastern Ghuota. The earlier reports said bombs with chlorine had been dropped by the Syrian Army but already that's been upgraded to Sarin. I'm fairly sure the OPCW will soon be able to confirm it was Novichok.

Posted by: Al-Pol | Apr 8, 2018 12:50:23 AM | 160

160
Some bodies will be delivered to OPCW that will test positive for known nerve agent. Same as the bodies that arrived in Turkey same time or earlier than the so called CW attack took place in Syria tested positive to a nerve agent.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Apr 8, 2018 12:58:25 AM | 161

161
I'd be expecting a double announcement from the OPCW in the next few days, confirming they found "Novichok or a Novichok like substance" in the Skripal's and found "the same or similar" in the samples taken from several children's bodies removed from Eastern Ghouta. The only question is will the US wait until after the announcements before launching their cruise missiles on Damascus.

Posted by: Al-Pol | Apr 8, 2018 1:15:44 AM | 162

Al-Pol 162
US president has very little power as any appointees have to be approved by the senate.
The president is Commander in Chief of the US offensive forces, but can be impeached at any time for any reason. Be interesting to see where this goes as the neo-cons will be putting pressure on Trump to attack Syria and therefore Russia.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Apr 8, 2018 1:31:28 AM | 163

162
From March 13 - Reuters

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russia said on Tuesday it had information that the United States planned to bomb the government quarter in Damascus on an invented pretext, and said it would respond militarily if it felt Russian lives were threatened by such an attack.

They are edging closer and closer to WW3.

I remember this feeling from the Reagan 80s before Russia caved. They won't cave this time.

Posted by: somebody | Apr 8, 2018 4:41:58 AM | 164

142

The PHE statement 7th March dosent make any mention of others affected save the two (no third person known at that time apparently) affected.

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/public-health-england-statement-regarding-events-in-salisbury

It’s important to note that no further cases of illness have been reported since the incident occurred on Sunday 4 March. We understand that people will be feeling unsure, but we are not seeing new cases of any members of the public being seriously ill.

Posted by: NS | Apr 8, 2018 4:50:35 AM | 165

155 157

The PHE statement 7th March dosent make any mention of others affected save the two (no third person known at that time apparently) affected.

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/public-health-england-statement-regarding-events-in-salisbury

It’s important to note that no further cases of illness have been reported since the incident occurred on Sunday 4 March. We understand that people will be feeling unsure, but we are not seeing new cases of any members of the public being seriously ill.

Posted by: NS | Apr 8, 2018 4:52:28 AM | 166

@158 ..."the woman kept referring to it as a weapon of mass destruction"

A weapon that is claimed to be a WMD has to be capable of, you know, destruction on a massive scale.

Yet this substance - whatever it is - isn't capable of doing that.

That is axiomatic, because Even According To The British when this "weapon" was used it succeeded in making three people puke their guts up before... they started getting better.

All without - again, according to the British government - any antidote being administered to those three unfortunates.

Indeed, the only "destruction" that has occurred during this entire oh-so-smelly incident amounts to exactly one (1) cat and two (2) guinea pigs, all of whom met their demise at the hands of negligence of the British authorities.

Honestly, whatever this substance was (and I have no idea what it was, though I doubt that b is correct in assuming it to be food poisoning) the one thing we know is that it WASN'T a Weapon Of Mass Destruction.

It can't be, precisely because it would have left Mass Destruction in its wake, which it didn't.

Posted by: Yeah, Right | Apr 8, 2018 7:32:42 AM | 167

My interpretation of Trump’s statement about leaving Syria was appears to have been incorrect. I think what b surmises in his new post is more likely to be true: Trump’s remark follows the pattern set last year before he fired missiles at Syria.

I’m also not so sure that the Skripals are participants(see the PS below). Until we actually see them we should assume that they are dead. If the Skripal’s are not participants then SD Bailey is the top suspect for their poisoning.

If the Skripal’s are alive then the Salisbury incident was motivated primarily by Syria. If they are dead, then tieing up loose ends of the Steele dossier was another motivation (see the PS below).

PS I tend to discount the Steele dossier because I view the entire attempt to link Trump to Russia as a farce for public consumption. Trump is no renegade. His dancing with Saudis and moving the embassy proved that.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Apr 8, 2018 8:04:51 AM | 168

Good explanation on public/private Britain-Russia-spy relations and how secret services work

Skripal - A Russian Web or Rusi Web

Posted by: somebody | Apr 8, 2018 8:43:34 AM | 169

Shellfish Toxin and DS Bailey

Posted by: NS | Apr 8, 2018 9:16:21 AM | 170


Some commenter had found reports of food poisoning of customers at zizzi, including if memory serves, from seafood. cant find that post but here are a couple of food poisoning reviews from zizzis customers....

https://www.tripadvisor.in/ShowUserReviews-g186338-d1018951-r253740613-Zizzi_The_Strand-London_England.html

https://www.tripadvisor.in/ShowUserReviews-g186338-d2009330-r437019868-Zizzi_The_O2-London_England.html

Posted by: anon | Apr 8, 2018 1:42:43 PM | 171


and a post on how to make a Compensation Claim for Food Poisoning in a Zizzi Restaurant !

https://www.uk-personal-injuries.co.uk/compensation-claim-for-food-poisoning-in-zizzi-restaurant

Posted by: anon | Apr 8, 2018 1:44:39 PM | 172

Saxitoxin is a very different type of nerve agent than VX of the Novichoks. The latter act as cholinesterase inhibitors, and cause convulsions. Whereas saxitoxin inhibits voltage-activated sodium channels in neurons; this prevents the transmission of action potentials, and hence produces flaccid paralysis. Hence, the clinical picture of saxitoxin poisoning is very different than that of VX/Novichok. Is that why one of the doctors treated the Skripals stated that they have not been poisoned with "nerve agents"? Unfortunately, the Skripals' doctors have been gagged, and hence can't clarify this issue.

With saxitoxin poisoning, death can occur by respiratory failure. If the victims are hospitalized quickly before complete respiratory failure occurs, and given respiratory support as needed, they can be expected to fully recover after the agent is metabolized and cleared from the system. The Skripals seem to be en route to total recovery. Could people totally recover from a dose of VX/Novichoks sufficient to induce coma? I don't know the answer, but comments I have seen online suggest otherwise.

Posted by: Mark McCarty | Apr 8, 2018 5:49:58 PM | 173

Has it ever been explained what happened next door to Zizzi's on March 7? That afternoon, police, fire and ambulance services were called to Sarum House on Castle Road, the neighbouring building to Zizzi's.

There are at least three videos online including this one from The Daily Mail:

"Woman who works beside Salisbury Zizzi's escorted into ambulance
The woman who works in an office block next to the Zizzi's restaurant in Salisbury where a Russia spy ate with his daughter, was hustled out by police and paramedics into a waiting ambulance."

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/video/news/video-1643414/Woman-works-Salisbury-Zizzis-escorted-ambulance.html

and a couple more vids posted by locals:

Incident in Salisbury: Sarum House next to Zizzi on Castle Street, Salisbury 07.03.2018
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J7Tjx58FON4 – Sarum House vid posted by Simon Ward Photography (also used by SpireFM)

Sarum House Salisbury. Fire service arriving 7th March 2018 1.08pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BJi_3S0ApJg – Sarum House – different angle posted by booke23

###

Posted by: Adrian | Apr 8, 2018 9:42:07 PM | 174

Here’s the statement issued April 6, 2018 by The Vets in Salisbury:

PUBLIC STATEMENT
As you’ve probably heard in the public domain, Mr Skripal is one of our clients. Today, the government has revealed two guinea pigs belonging to Mr Skripal died and his cat was put down after the unfortunate nerve agent attack on Mr Skripal.
We contacted the police straightaway upon hearing the news that Mr Skripal had been admitted to hospital, and a number of times afterwards, to make them aware of Mr Skripal’s pets and their needs.
We contacted Porton Down – in case the animals may have been taken into quarantine. We also offered to take care of Mr Skripal’s pets in his absence. We were never contacted by the police or Porton Down in return regarding Mr Skripal’s pets.
As you can appreciate, we’re bound by UK Data Protection Regulations (soon the GDPR). In addition, client confidentiality is of the utmost importance to us.
We cannot and will not give out any details about our clients or their animals – no matter who you are.
We are also not able to speculate on the cause of death of any of the animals – should this have occurred.
It’s a tragic situation and an incredibly difficult case, with high risks to the general public and all involved.
We trust that everyone that was involved was doing their compassionate best, in very challenging circumstances. However, we remain very sad at the suffering of Mr Skripal, his daughter Yulia and their beloved pets – to whom they were devoted.
We have no further information available than is available in the public domain.
Please do not call us, email us or turn up at our practice or homes in the hope to obtain further information. Many thanks!
The Vets Salisbury

The Vets’ post elicited this response from a local:

“I work near their house its taken till this week to ask us if we saw anything unusual that weekend …if it takes that long to question people they see every day then the animals weren’t even considered by them …it’s so good of you to offer help … bless poor pets :(”

https://www.facebook.com/thevetssalisbury/posts/1599229670125442

Posted by: Adrian | Apr 8, 2018 9:46:02 PM | 175

@157

Policeman brought into narrative to 'localise it' for UK sheople, add 'attack on UK first responders/protector of citizenry/.gov' without which the story is less 'useable'. Is named BAILEY in the script as it references by association the very foundations of the UK 'legal' system: The Old Bailey'.

Incident is designed to implant the association of Russia/Putin and 'Animal Assad'/Syria are gassers into the public consciousness (via headfake media narrative), prior to the subsequent 'gassing' of Syrian civillians that enable Nikki Haley to announce that the US can retaliate without approval of UNSC. Redux of Blair's dodgy dossier and Colin Powell's lies to UN pre 'Shock and Awe', despite approx 40 tonnes of chemweap ingredients being discovered areas liberated from militants in Syria, and Russia warning weeks ago of imminent 'false flag' event using gas...

https://www.globalresearch.ca/40-tons-of-chemical-weapons-found-in-areas-liberated-from-militants-in-syria/5633887
https://thesaker.is/russian-mod-warn-us-is-preparing-a-chemical-false-flag-attack-in-syria-to-justify-us-attack/

Posted by: omniversling | Apr 9, 2018 8:10:57 PM | 176

RT@
"Yulia Skripal has refused contact with the Russian Embassy and her Moscow-based cousin, Viktoria, and asked for no one else to speak on her behalf, in a statement released by Scotland Yard after she was discharged from hospital. "

Posted by: test | Apr 11, 2018 3:41:25 PM | 177

177
Yes, this police statement "on behalf of Yulia Skripal" is obviously false.

Daily Mail is the only tabloid acting like a real tabloid with reporting this case

The whole affair stinks.

Posted by: somebody | Apr 11, 2018 6:18:35 PM | 178

The UK have their own definition of common sense and therefore having no proof means the Russian are responsible.
Do you really think the Salisbury hospital would have the technical experience to combat and cure the Skripals after being poisoned with a deadly nerve agent. Never.
The Skripals were transferred within 24 hours to the military hospital facility at Winterbourne nearby.
Do you really think the table at Zizzi’s was riddled with the same nerve agent. Never.
The police special authorities never closed the restaurant until 11.54am 6 March 18. We are told by the officials that the table in the restaurant was so riddled with the deadly nerve agent it had to be incinerate on the 7th March 18.
What happened to the waitress who cleaned the table after the Skipals left and paid for their meal?
What happened to the restaurant cashier who took their money?
What happened to the other people who later sat at that same toxic ridden table?
Has anybody investigated the police officer and figured out how he got the nerve agent on himself when no other officer or person was infected.
The media and the government once again released bullshit to throw the public off the track and announce a large amount of nerve agent has now been discovered at the front doorstep or on the door.
Was Nick Bailey the only Police officer to pickup and inspect the front door mat prior to entering the house through the front door.
Did he have a key to get in, as there is no sign of damage to the door, lock, hinges or door frame. I think not. according to a witness statement a medical person and a police woman were the only persons with the Skripal and the police woman removed items from the Skripals. The police woman and doctor were not contaminated and the police woman may have passed the keys on to Bailey.
Maybe he climbed a ladder as the front upstairs windows have remained open through out the month. I think not, the neighbors would have said.
Maybe he broke in through the back door. Oh the back door isn’t damaged either.
Nick Bailey was not first on the scene he later turned up when their was one female copper, a doctor a good Samaritan and two witnesses attending to the Skripals. None of these people were contaminated.
So at this point Nick Bailey must have entered the house using the front door keys. But there is no record of the keys being contaminated and no other officer who entered in and out of that front or back door being contaminated. So it is a fact that neither the keys, the doors or anything in or around the house or the shops was laced with any toxin.
But Bailey is the only copper who is slightly contaminated.
Could it be possible the copper was used as a porn and the government staged his poisoning to get the public sympathy and brainwash the public into thinking the Russians will kill any English person discriminately and who better to use than a copper or a child. And also if there was a nerve agent used then who’s not to say that the copper may have been the first to approach the Skripals as they sit on the bench and spray them with a chemical that accidentally spray’s back onto himself.
So maybe there is some truth in what the old inebriated man said when he was being questioned by the police; he claimed he saw the same copper talking to them at the bench seat then saw him again later with everyone else. The old man then became aggressive and loud and was taken into custody.

This is my theory and its more than the tripe the government can offer.
Also checkout the smoke coming from the Skripals home for the past 4 days. Interesting.
And what happened to the inebriated man who tried telling the police who he saw but was quickly taken into custody.

Posted by: Maxx | Apr 20, 2018 5:26:28 AM | 179

Maybe I slid down the chimney like santa clause!

Posted by: Nick Bailey | Apr 20, 2018 5:56:38 AM | 180

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