Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
March 16, 2018

The British Government's 'Novichok' Drama Was Written By Whom?

The Skripal incident is now, by chance or by design, part of a much larger campaign about 'western' dominance over 'the east'. Russia, which ended the unilateral moment of U.S. nuclear primacy, is currently the main target. The situation is extremely dangerous as any further escalation, in the Middle East, the Ukraine ore elsewhere, might lead to a war between nuclear armed powers.

The government decreed 'truth' about the Skripal case has many discrepancies. The connection of the case to Russia is much weaker than the propaganda claims. But doubt and dissent about it are not allowed to prevail.

The political response to the incident around the British-Russian double-agent Sergej Skripal and his daughter started slowly. On Sunday, the 4th of March, Skripal and his daughter were found unconscious on a public bench in Salisbury, England. The local police and emergency services took care of them.

Only on March 8 did the case start to make larger waves. The BBC reported:

Addressing the House of Commons, the home secretary [Rudd] said the attack was "attempted murder in the most cruel and public way".
She refused to speculate on whether the Russian state might have been involved in the attack, saying the police investigation should be based on "facts, not rumour".

Besides Skripal and his daughter one police officer was affected:

A police officer, who was in intensive care, is now "stable and conscious", Wiltshire's chief constable said.

It is unclear where the officer is thought to have contacted the alleged poison. Some reports said it was at Skripal's house, others say that it was at the bench where the Skripal's collapsed.

But a doctor and others who administered first aid were not affected at all:

Meanwhile, a doctor who was one of the first people at the scene has described how she found Ms Skripal slumped unconscious on a bench, vomiting and fitting. She had also lost control of her bodily functions.

The woman, who asked not to be named, told the BBC she moved Ms Skripal into the recovery position and opened her airway, as others tended to her father.

She said she treated her for almost 30 minutes, saying there was no sign of any chemical agent on Ms Skripal's face or body.

The doctor said she had been worried she would be affected by the nerve agent, but added that she "feels fine".

This seems to exclude a highly toxic poison or a substance that is taken up through the skin. But how then was the police officer affected?

The Salisbury Journal noted on March 5:

Emergency services at the scene suspected the substance may have been a powerful drug called fentanyl, ...

In November 2017 the Salisbury Journal reported on an unrelated heroin and carfentanyl overdose case. (Carfentanyl is a strong analog of fentanyl.) The local emergency services are surely acquainted with such drugs.

The Skripal's are said to be still alive. No details about the alleged poison were published and no medical bulletin about their current state.

After a slow start the British government is now making an immense show out of the case by involving the army and by sending out lots of people in obviously unnecessary high protection gear.


It also planted lots of rumors. On March 9 it was said that the poison likely came from inside Mr. Skripal's house. Three days ago claims were made that it was smeared on the door handle of Skripal's car, today it is supposed to have come out of the suitcase of Skripal's daughter. All these claims are based on leaks from anonymous official sources. It is likely that none of them is true.

Today, twelve days after the incident, it is still unknown what chemical substance the alleged poison exactly is and where and how it was administered.

Former British ambassador Craig Murray reports that the British chemical weapon laboratory at Porton Down, just 8 miles from where the incident happened, is unsure about what substance (if any) was actually involved:

I have now received confirmation from a well placed FCO source that Porton Down scientists are not able to identify the nerve gas as being of Russian manufacture, and have been resentful of the pressure being placed on them to do so. Porton Down would only sign up to the formulation “of a type developed by Russia” after a rather difficult meeting where this was agreed as a compromise formulation.

Blaming Russia for the use of a poison "of a type developed by Russia" (i.e. the Soviet Union) is like blaming Germany for all current Heroin addicts because the Deutsche Reich company Bayer developed the mass-production of Heroin as a sedative for coughs.

In her "45 minutes" speech on March 12 Theresa May used this wording:

It is now clear that Mr Skripal and his daughter were poisoned with a military-grade nerve agent of a type developed by Russia. It is part of a group of nerve agents known as Novichok.

"Of a type developed by Russia” is now the standard formulation that the British government and its allies are using. This is supposed to refer to a zoo of chemical substances, the Novichoks, that back in the 1980s a Soviet laboratory in today's Uzbekistan may have researched as potential chemical weapons. There are serious doubts, including from a leading Porton Down scientist, that these Novichoks actually exist.

So where is the 'Novichok' talk coming from? Well, someone in the British government propaganda staff watched the current seasons of the British-American spy drama Strike Back. Nina Byzantina points to the summaries of recent episodes:

Episode 50 ran in the U.K on November 21 2017 and in the U.S. on February 23 2018:

Meanwhile, General Lázsló shuts down Section 20, forcing Donovan to work in secret. She discovers that Zaryn is in fact Karim Markov, a Russian scientist who allegedly killed his colleagues with Novichok, a nerve agent they invented.

Episodes 51 ran in the U.K on November 28 2017 and in the U.S. on March 2 2018:

Section 20 track Berisovich's meth lab in Turov where Markov is making more Novichok and destroy it, though Berisovich escapes with Markov.

Episodes 52 ran in the U.K on January 31 2018 and in the U.S. on March 9 2018:

Section 20 track down Maya, a local Muslim woman Lowry radicalised, to a local airport. When she attempts to release the Novichok, Reynolds shoots her. The Novichok is fake however, as Berisovich does not want an attack committed in his country. ... By the time Section 20 arrives, Berisovich had already called in the FSB to extract Markov and confiscate the Novichok. Yuri resurfaces to kill McAllister and Wyatt. However they turn the tables and strangle him to death. They then manage to engage the FSB and contain the gas. But in the process Reynolds is exposed. Markov works on an antidote but is killed by the Russians before he can complete. McAllister improvises and saves Reynolds, before Novin blows up the lab. Lowry uses the remainder of the gas to kill Berisovich for trying to betray her.

Here is a clip from the series (h/t @Syricide).

Isn't it astonishing how 'life' follows the course of last week's TV drama? Or did the TV drama follow a larger pre-written script? (Remember the X-Files pilot episode (vid) in March 2001 which 'predicted' 9/11?) Who really gave the British government the idea to blame Russia and Novichoks for the incident that involved the Skripals? Were it the experts at Porton Down, some spy drama on current TV or a propaganda agency?

The Soviet chemist Vil Mirzanyanov, who now lives in the U.S., is the only person who claims that Novichocks were real chemical weapons. Neither Porton Down nor the OPCW have accepted that claim. In 2007 Mirzanyanov wrote a still available book about his work at the Soviet laboratory in Uzbekistan and published the chemical formulas of some alleged Novichok substances. But, as Mirzanyanov concedes, such Novichok substances, if these were involved at all, are by no means an exclusively Russian issue. Vil Mirzanyanov's much publicized book made sure of that. As today's Wall Street Journal explains:

That publicity led its chemical structure to be leaked, making it readily available for reproduction elsewhere, said Ralf Trapp, a France-based consultant on the control of chemical and biological weapons.

“The chemical formula has been publicized and we know from publications from then-Czechoslovakia that they had worked on similar agents for defense in the 1980s,” he said. “I’m sure other countries with developed programs would have as well.
“The understanding at the time was that even though Russia was working on it and developing it, they didn’t actually stockpile Novichok agents or precursors,” said Mr. Trapp.

The formulas are known and several other countries have worked on similar stuff. Anyone with a decent laboratory and some expert knowledge can make such poisons. (Update-March 18) In 2016 Iranian chemists synthesized five types of 'novichok' nerve agents in minuscule amounts and added their spectral signatures to the OPCW's chemical weapons database. (end-update)  This explains why the experts in Porton Down would not blame Russia and why the British government, eager to blame Russia, can only talk about "a type developed by Russia”.

The WSJ piece also explains why it will be difficult to find out from where, when and how the alleged poisons came to Salisbury:

The components used to make Novichok are readily available, but their short lifespan and the risks involved in using it demand professional expertise, scientific and arms experts said.
Finding a trail of Novichok would be more difficult because it is carried in two parts that are combined to create a viscous liquid only shortly before use, said Mr. Trapp.

Mr. Trapp is a serious expert on the issue. He says that the Novichok agents are binary agents made from readily available substances and have a short live span. These characteristics will make it practically impossible to find a real culprit.

Russia, which the British government and now also its allies blame without presenting evidence, had no reason to attack the Skripal's. Mr. Skripal, the British double agent, was released from a Russian jail in a 2010 spy-swap. He has lived openly in Britain for eight years. If this was an act of Russian revenge why wait so long? Killing him would also endanger those Russian spies who came back to Russia in exchange for Skripal's freedom. It would impede any future exchange. There is no plausible reason for Russia to do such, especially not in the current atmosphere.

There must be other reasons why Skripal was attacked, if he was, with some more recent motive than the one attributed to Russia.

Elijah Magnier, with decades of experience as war correspondent, tries to fit the incident into the larger picture of the U.S.-Russian proxy war in the Middle East:

The US and the International community tried to stop the battles of al-Ghouta to no avail. This prompted Washington to exercise its favourite hobby of imposing sanctions on Russia, without succeeding in stopping the Syrian army (fighting without its allies – except Russia) from recovering its control over Ghouta. The answer came immediately from Moscow by bombing Daraa and hitting al-Qaeda’s area of influence in an indication as to where the future theatre of military operations is expected to be.

Again, events are moving very fast: the US response came quickly through its UK ally when Britain took advantage of the poisoning of the former Russian spy Sergey Skripal in London to accuse Moscow of being behind his assassination. The message here is clear: all means are legitimate for the control of the Middle East, specifically Syria.

I am not sure that this claim fits the timeline. The British already hinted at Russian culpability on March 8. Reuters reported the March 12 Deraa bombing at 1:16 PM. The British prime minister May raised her accusations against Russia only a few hours later. To prepare and negotiate her statement with Porton Down likely took longer than that.

The Skripal incident has its origin in something different, likely in his supposed involvement in the dirty Steele dossier which targeted Donald Trump. (More interesting background to the Skripal-Steele connection can be found at UKColumn.) May's statement was not prompted by the Syrian-Russian bombing in Deraa governorate but is a part of the general anti-Russian campaign.

Magnier is right though to point out that a further escalation is quite possible:

The Syrian war is far from being a normal one. It is THE war between two superpowers and their allies, where US and Russian soldiers are directly involved on the ground in a war of domination and power. The lack of victory in the US eyes is worse than losing a battle. Even more, the victory of Russia and its allies on Syrian soil in any battle is therefore a direct blow to the heart of Washington and its allies.
The superpowers are on the verge of the abyss, so the danger of falling into a war of cosmic proposition is no longer confined to the imagination or merely a sensational part of unrealistic calculations.

The immense media scare and publicity of the Skripal drama is likely centrally directed. Someone is pressing NATO countries as well as thoughtful politicians to get on the side of the aggressive anti-Russian campaign. The French government spokesperson first rejected the accusations Theresa May made against Russia. It demanded proof:

We don’t do fantasy politics. Once the elements are proven, then the time will come for decisions to be made,” Griveaux told a news conference shortly after May said she was expelling Russian diplomats and suspending bilateral talks.

A day later and without further evidence coming to light France folded and joined others in accusing Russia because someone allegedly used a poison "of a type developed by Russia".

The British opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn warned of taking steps against Russia without first presenting evidence. He was immediately assaulted in a vicious propaganda campaign.

Even the hat of British opposition leader Corbyn was photoshopped by BBC Newsnight to make him look "Russian".
(If RT would do similar it would immediately lose its UK license.) - bigger

Corbyn too folded and now even makes claims that May has never made:

Theresa May was right on Monday to identify two possibilities for the source of the attack in Salisbury, given that the nerve agent used has been identified as of original Russian manufacture.

Theresa May's careful wording "of a type developed by Russia” does not imply a specific agent nor Russian manufacturing. Corbyn fell into the trap.

What we are seeing here with the Skripal incident and the "Novichok" claims is a gigantic propaganda campaign comparable to the 2001 Anthrax scare in the U.S. and the whole "weapons of mass destruction" campaign that heralded the U.S./UK war on Iraq.

Provoking Russia further will not end well. Rattlesnakes are shy, but at some point they have no other way out than to bite.

If we want to prevent a unpredictable clash between nuclear armed powers, which could kill millions within just a few moments, we must all publicly voice our doubts and expose the false accusations made against Russia and other countries.


Previous Moon of Alabama pieces on the Skripal case:

Posted by b on March 16, 2018 at 16:26 UTC | Permalink

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I doubt the masses of the West is capable of standing up to their government. They have been cowed. It is a pessimistic acknowledgement but I don't think anything short of hot war at home could wake up the average European or American any more. Heaven knows the kind of chemical that has been mixed with their food, but my observation is that most Westerners have become apathetic. And there is no leader to show them the way. Like Barack Obama, if Jeremy Corbyn becomes the Prime Minister of the UK he would be a disappointment. You have seen the sign of it.

Posted by: Steve | Mar 16 2018 16:48 utc | 1

"And there is no leader to show them the way" ..precisely the sentiment that hasd created the mess we call western civilization

Posted by: les7 | Mar 16 2018 16:57 utc | 2

When May announced that the Royals and such would not attend the World Cup I immediately wondered if she had telegraphed that there would be some horrible event there. In any event I don't think Russia has any choice but to decline to have English teams participate; they can't guarantee the teams safety.

Posted by: Bakerpete | Mar 16 2018 17:00 utc | 3

To clarify.. I've nothing against leaders or leadership.. It is the unchecked and unaccountable trust in them "to show us the way" that destroys and kills

Posted by: les7 | Mar 16 2018 17:00 utc | 4

The Skripal propaganda offensive is likely designed to soften up European and American voters for the long-sought bombing of Damascus. The French foreign ministry is making threats again today. The good news is that McMaster is rumored to be on his way out the door.

Posted by: Mike Maloney | Mar 16 2018 17:03 utc | 5

"There must be other reasons why Skripal was killed"

If he had died, wouldn't that be announced loudly and repeatedly? Even if he was still seriously ill this long after the incident you'd think we would hear something about it. The silence is deafening, no?

Posted by: farm ecologist | Mar 16 2018 17:08 utc | 6

thanks b.. you are covering all the bases here.... it is a clear frame up with serious ramifications...why the politicians of the west are so intent on this begs the question.. who are these politicians working for?? it clearly is not in the interest of its citizens... that is a shame corbyn has also folded... using these terms ""of a type developed by Russia” is so flimsy as to generally not even require a response, but may as leader of the uk and other world leaders have been quick to cast blame on russia without providing any proof.. we are at the same place we were at with the war on iraq - which has been proven to be based on false premises... the big difference is russia is not iraq... i can't believe the leaders of the west are this stupid and subservient to the interests of moving towards ww3 here...

my own thought is this has been in the works all along.. frame russia... russia stopped the regime change game and for that they must be punished... the shit is going to hit the fan and we will be lucky to avert it... these bimbos for world leaders need to be removed, now as opposed to later - but there appears to be no one to replace them..

Posted by: james | Mar 16 2018 17:09 utc | 7

On Sunday, the 4th of March, Skripal and his daughter were found unconscious on a public bench in Salisbury, England. ...
Only on March 8 did the case start to make larger waves.

So what happened in the interim that caused the Russia hysteria?

As I pointed out in the previous thread, on March 6 Browder began giving testimony to a UK Commons select committee where he stated it was a “Kremlin hit” and “I believe they want to kill me. They haven’t figured out a way yet where they can kill me and get away with it." As The Times put it: "Since he said that, suspicions have deepened that the Russian state was behind the poisoning..."

Posted by: pantaraxia | Mar 16 2018 17:11 utc | 8

They could suffer from botulism.
That could explain neurotoxin poisoning symptoms (including paralysis) without doctors and nurses being affected. Still does not explain how that police officer got it. Hm.

Posted by: hopehely | Mar 16 2018 17:12 utc | 9

In social conditioning you try to create a series of events to enforce a social conclusion. Big events set the direction and conclusion while small ones reinforce the message/narrative.

The narrative on russia was unwinding. The olympics fell flat as reinforcement. If a Ukrainian event is planned to preceed the world cup, then an event was needed to re-clarify the narrative.

Skripal is being used to just that effect. The more events are evidence free the more they are obvious as social conditioning

Posted by: les7 | Mar 16 2018 17:15 utc | 10

Responding to 'Steve'; 'cowed' suggests 'beaten into submission' but my take (as a U.S. citizen & resident for nearly 70 years) is that 'buffaloed' is more apt. American's faith in the leaders & sources we've trusted (wrongly) to provide us the information needed to maintain a functional democracy have now been proven to be unworthy of that faith. 50% of registered voters couldn't even muster the interest in the '16 elections to bother to vote and that outcome was determined by a archaic body formed to insure the continued rule of white supremacist Christian male land owners (and, oh boy! Did they win big on that one!). The 'official media outlets' (NYT, WaPo, MSNBC, CNN, Faux[NOT]News, etc.) have all been shown to be highly partisan propaganda organs on a par with Soviet Russia's 'Pravda' (WaPo is commonly called 'Pravda on the Potomac') so we've also been entirely 'gaslighted' and the vast majority are adrift, not knowing what to believe or how to sort out reasonable 'alternative' news outlets (e.g.; ConsortiumNews, this site, RT, MPN, Telesur, etc. - IMO) from outlets spouting hysterical propaganda (e.g.; InfoWars, Media Matters - IMO). In the absence of trustworthy leaders or news sources I think the majority of my fellow citizens find themselves either too paralyzed with indecision to make decisive choices other than to abandon themselves to their 'Party of choice' and 'go with the flow'. The other critical issue is that the American public has not had to contend with any truly serious blowback from our national policy decisions. Had Ukraine (for example) decided the Bundy occupation of Malhour NWR was actually the action of bonafide 'freedom fighters' who represented the 'legitimate' aspirations of the American people and that the USG was 'illigitimate' [paraphrasing USG rhetoric supporting the FSA] and had begun funneling massive amounts of weapons to the Bundy clan with which they began shelling adjacent towns in order to 'liberate' them, Americans might begin seeing U.S. regime-change operations, among other disastrous foreign policy choices, in a different light. Had we ever suffered the direct consequences of war on our territory, we might be more empathetic with those upon whom we unleash our 'democracy promotion'. But, these things haven't happened so the vast majority of Americans are emotionally 'removed' from such empathy, or for some like the NeoCons' "better them than us" & "well, they deserve it". The American political system is entirely broken and dysfunctional. I see nothing hopeful in the future.

Posted by: Marshalldoc | Mar 16 2018 17:21 utc | 11

I guess everybody is aware of the potential rhyming of history with this "attempted" assasination. So good to refer to Saker's latest, I find that though he is not a native to the US, his observstions concur with many of those I have made on my own in my adult life regarding life and the inhabitants and the cultural starus quo regarding life in america. Arguments that seem to ring true to nature are much more plausible to me than the "propaganda" eminating from the uk and it's allies, but many of my friends and relatives are impossible to speak to at this point, they seem to me so "off centered." It's not difficult to comprehend how an entire culture can be whipped up into an irrational unexamined frenzy. I'd forgive it completely if I didn't think that it was partly due to the habitual making of poor choices, wherther coerced through societal pressure, or by personal convenience, mainly for short term gain, and over a long period of time. Perhaps Peter Lavell is right in his hypothesis that wars begn from a loss of prestige? Well, that and trade wars traditionally escalate? I wonder what will happen next, every day, things are getting worse to quote the jamaican song.

Posted by: Geoff | Mar 16 2018 17:22 utc | 12

maybe west wants to say that chems are new normal because more evidence of ksa syrian rebels involved with it everyday

daughter's symptoms are exactly same as nerve gas used on yemeni demonstrators in sanaa back in 2011, check the vids

Posted by: mina | Mar 16 2018 17:23 utc | 13

Now a murder investigation has been launched into the death of Nikolai Glushkov. a close associate of Boris Berezovsky (purported to be his right hand man) who was found dead on Monday.

Police launch murder inquiry over death of Nikolai Glushkov

The Met police’s counter-terrorism command, which has led the investigation from the outset, was retaining its lead role in the investigation “because of the associations Mr Glushkov is believed to have had”, the force said.

“At this stage there is nothing to suggest any link to the attempted murders in Salisbury, nor any evidence that he was poisoned,” the police said in a statement.

Nothing to see here folks.

Posted by: pantaraxia | Mar 16 2018 17:24 utc | 14

Thanks b for your continued heavy lifting. Btw, other serious journalists are now citing your diligence on this plot.

Yes, I ‘m in on the dots to the Steele dossier “likely” that Skripal was very helpful and must be silenced; his daughter too since he may have confessed to his part.

Falling apart it is. How was The Mirror, (UK), allowed to publish this article?

Before it is pulled, take a read. Below are just snips.

The Dark Secrets of Porton Down: Inside controversial defence lab which developed VX nerve agent and used human 'guinea pigs'
More than 20,000 people have been tested on at the top secret lab which is concentrating on gas attack defences

It is one of Britain's most secretive sites, remaining shrouded in mystery for more than 100 years. [.]

The 7,000 acre site, near Salisbury, is one of the UK's most secretive and controversial military research facilities and the oldest chemical warfare research installations in the world.

Scientists from Porton were among the first to create biological weapons as well as one of the world's most lethal chemical weapons, but now its main purpose is to support the military and help combat terrorism.

Porton Down opened in 1916 as the War Department Experimental Station for testing chemical weapons during WW1.

Scientists at the lab researched and developed weapons agents used by the British military during the war such as chlorine, mustard gas and phosgene.[.]

The base was later named the Chemical Defence Experimental Establishment.
Chemical weapons were tested on site. Scientists built cannisters full of poison gas that could be released by a timer and they also filled shells with it and released them at targets.

But many of the shells failed to explode meaning the fields are still full of the active chemical agents.

Now Porton concentrates on devising defensive measures against gas attacks after its chemical and biological weapons programme was closed down in the 1950s.

On the government's website it says: "To help develop effective medical countermeasures and to test systems, we produce very small quantities of chemical and biological agents.

"They are stored securely and disposed of safely."[.]

Human experiments

Since 1916 more than 20,000 people have taken part in studies at the base.
Porton Down's experiments on humans have been widely criticised as it is alleged some human 'guinea pigs' were duped into taking part in tests.

Tests were carried out on servicemen to try and determine the effects of nerve agents on humans - with one recorded death due to a nerve gas experiment.
Leading Aircraftman Ronald Maddison died aged 20 in 1953 after taking part in sarin nerve agent toxicity tests.


Initial samples of the Ebola virus were sent to the Porton Down lab in 1976.
The lab now allegedly contains samples of some of the world's most aggressive diseases including Ebola, anthrax and the plague.[.]

Aerial release trials

Between 1953 and 1976 a number of aerial release trials were carried out to help the government understand how a biological attack might spread across the UK.

The government said: "Given the international situation at the time these trials were conducted in secret."

And added: "The information obtained from these trials has been and still is vital to the defence of the UK."

Two separate and independent reviews concluded the trials did not have any adverse health effects on the UK population.[.]


There has been speculation over the years that alien bodies could be hidden at the sight.

But the government has said: "No aliens, either alive or dead have ever been taken to Porton Down or any other Defence Science and Technology Laboratory site."

Aliens too?
“No aliens, either alive or dead have ever been taken to Porton Down or any other Defence Science and Technology Laboratory site.”

Yep. Begs a question!

OTOH, something bad cometh - March 26th is fast approaching and desperation mounts. Watch Mnuchin and the Feds. Print and Buy USD$. World is swimming in mountains of debt that will never be repaid. Russia and China are said to be dumping UST. Which country holds the most UST?
It's Cayman Islands followed by Ireland.

Posted by: likklemore | Mar 16 2018 17:25 utc | 15

Sorry but IMO no one is FALLING into a trap. These people know what they're doing. One gets tired of hearing how Trump has been trapped into provoking Russia. Paul Craig Roberts seems to believe it but after watching his actions I don't buy it at all. He never had any intentions of settling with Russia nor easing out of the empire wars.

You are correct about the apparent connection between TV shows and what's happening. Same thing with 9/11. Remember when Condsleazy Rice said they never considered Airplanes used to fly into buildings... Then look at the TV show premier Lone Gunman?

Everything in the West is scams and/or lies. Nothing the governments put out, whether economics or geopolitics are even close to accurate. The west is owned lock, stock and barrel by the central banks are fascism economically and very nearly Nazism politically. Their citizens are unskilled, uneducated, and have very little in the way of cognitive skills,,, all necessary for tyrants to exist in the open as they do today.

Very good analysis b. Too bad reading comprehension in the West is at a 3rd grade level.

Posted by: ken | Mar 16 2018 17:27 utc | 16

Without a good description of the toxin / poisonous substance / other agent, it is not possible to speculate. I read that Yulia, on the bench, was vomiting, had lost control of her bowels, and was conscious. It sounded to me like mushroom poisoning. (Not ricin, anthrax, sarin …) The only clue commensurate with ‘nerve gas’ or some other poison that could act rapidly through skin by touch / contact (touching the ill person, a contaminated surface, etc.) is that a policeman fell ill, but where is he, what are his symptoms, and how is he doing? Maybe that was just hype, etc. (see b, top post.) This is contradictory - as b points out - with the Doc not being affected in the least. (I’m not a toxicologist, this is just common sense.)

Point is, if I stated that some cooking, veggie identification mistake, or some attempted mayhem with mushrooms possibly as an insult miscalculated gone very wrong is what took place here, nobody could disprove or even seriously challenge my theory, for now. (Not saying that took place, only that there are no facts, no way of judging.)

The reaction of GB Gvmt., then the US, France, etc. is another matter altogether, in the present climate it is par for the course. A Russian ex-spy almost dying (if that is the case?) is obviously to be laid at the door of arch-devil Putin. This type of hysteria is actually a sign of weakness, of bewilderment, of not knowing where to turn, what to do, etc., and exploiting situations in the silliest ways. The UK at any rate has gone past a peak propaganda point, imhho.

Posted by: Noirette | Mar 16 2018 17:31 utc | 17

I don't see a link for the account of the doctor who administered first aid.

Great analysis. This is only something I noticed diving into the article a second time.

Posted by: Norumbega | Mar 16 2018 17:40 utc | 18

What are your plans if you survive the coming atomic war? I have none.

Posted by: Dave | Mar 16 2018 17:49 utc | 19

@18 norumbega... google is your friend.. here is a link to what you ask below...

Posted by: james | Mar 16 2018 17:55 utc | 20

Very reminiscent of the MH17 campaign that was used to bully the reluctant Europeans into imposing sanctions on Russia. Accusations were made and a narrative put forward immediately without presenting clear evidence or waiting for an investigation. Through repetition this narrative has become dogma in the West despite the fact that supporting evidence has still not been forthcoming. It seems that after 9-11 it became clear that quickly putting out a narrative, with the support of the press, and demonizing anyone with any public stature who questions the basic story could be successful, even when there were thousands of eye witnesses and many flaws in the official explanation. The facts, or what really happened no longer matter once the narrative has taken root.

My question is what kinds of threats are being used to keep potential dissenters in line now. French banks were punished over the mistrial deal and it was abandoned. Now the stakes seem to be higher and the risk of defections has increased, so what is the stick?

Posted by: the pessimist | Mar 16 2018 18:03 utc | 21

Jonathan Freeland at The Guardian writes today that while due process and rules of evidence are a foundation of democracy, they do not apply in this case because Putin is diabolically evil. Freeland claims that since the responsibility for this "chemical weapons attack" is obvious, no delay should be permitted to suss out the silly details - because the evil Russians and their western enablers will use the time to "fog" the minds of the western peoples and seed doubt. He proposes immediate action to isolate the "murderous tyrant", through blacklists, freezing bank accounts, and unspecified action to counteract the intent to exploit "democratic and legal traditions as weaknesses." (i.e. - calls for more clarity play into Putin's hands).

The above is fascist twaddle, aimed at common citizens and also directly at Corbyn. Freeland should be called out as such, I believe The Guardian limited its comment section for a reason (other western media outlets have done the same over the past year). It seems whipping up this non-story was at least 50% directed at Corbyn and reflects domestic UK politics, but has taken a life of its own. The May government likely did not think out possible consequences of going code red, and if Craig Murray's sources are correct that the "findings" of the CW specialists are compromised intelligence produced under pressure, then some seismic backlash may yet await. Certainly Freeland felt the need to bring up the 2003 experiences, if only to argue its not the same. The abject mediocrity of the politicians and many of their supporters in the media is acute, and there's a real good chance they will impale themselves on their own swords.

Posted by: jayc | Mar 16 2018 18:05 utc | 22

When progressive, social programs only have spineless, timid fools like Corbyn and Sanders to front them, it is no wonder why so many socialist states states have been founded by psychopaths like Lenin.

Posted by: CF | Mar 16 2018 18:09 utc | 23

Thank you for continuing to raise your voice about the ongoing myth making in our world.

Are we ever going to discuss the Western social contract that has an elite cabal owning the global financial system and everything else forever and ever? That is where the power comes from that is fueling our sick world, IMO

Posted by: psychohistorian | Mar 16 2018 18:10 utc | 24

Background on the tangled RUSI web:

Patron: Her Majesty Elizabeth II
President: HRH the Duke of Kent, Lt. Col. Rtd.
Chairman: The Rt Hon the Lord Hague of Richmond
Senior Vice President: General David Petraeus, US Army. Rtd.

More connections to the web can be found at:

Posted by: Krollchem | Mar 16 2018 18:13 utc | 25

Daniel 8 has it Damascus becomes a smoking ruin in one night.

A few other things have to occur prior to mid May.

Read the bible...religious conviction unnecessary.

Posted by: Whorin Piece | Mar 16 2018 18:35 utc | 26

Its disgusting to see how all the western media, states use this incident as a warmongering effort. These people are really sick in their heads.

Also, note how propaganda works in the west, EVERY JOURNALIST, EVERY POLITICIAN toe with the propaganda line, isnt it amazing? Not only how it works but that there is NO DISSENT? Heinous!

'Skripal case helps divert attention from Brexit' –

Posted by: Anon | Mar 16 2018 18:36 utc | 27

@22 jayc.. i wonder if freeland is any relation to our foreign minsiter here in canada - crystia freeland? she's also a real buffoon whenever the word russia leaves her lips...

i liked this quote from rt..

"“Frankly speaking, in international practice we never encountered such behavior at the state level when very serious accusations are being brought up against a country – our country in this case – with such wording as ‘apparently,’ ‘most likely’ and so on,” the press secretary said. Such an approach “contradicts not only international law, but common sense as a whole,” he added. quote from Dmitry Peskov

Posted by: james | Mar 16 2018 18:39 utc | 28

@26 whorin piece.. okay, i'll bite.. why prior to mid may? is this some kind of nostradamus thing or what?

Posted by: james | Mar 16 2018 18:41 utc | 29

What sounds more and more like war fever is becoming quite frightening. But it's interesting to see that people are still sneering at those who point out that we appear to be on the verge of war, as they have been sneering for years. We've been at this precipice for a long time. The difference is that now we seem to be toeing the edge. In the end it is all theater though, bloody theater. The end goal is the same as ever, a global police state, an Orwellian world.

Posted by: paul | Mar 16 2018 18:42 utc | 30

Jeremy Corbyn: "Theresa May was right on Monday to identify two possibilities for the source of the attack in Salisbury, given that the nerve agent used has been identified as of original Russian manufacture. Either this was a crime authored by the Russian state; or that state has allowed these deadly toxins to slip out of the control it has an obligation to exercise. If the latter, a connection to Russian mafia-like groups that have been allowed to gain a toehold in Britain cannot be excluded.

On Wednesday the prime minister ruled out neither option. Which of these ultimately prove to be the case is a matter for police and security professionals to determine. Hopefully the next step will be the arrest of those responsible."

I don't see any signs that the statement is manipulated or not of Corbyn's writing. What a disappointment he is! Instead of keeping his back straight, as b correctly pointed out, he completely folded into the anti-Russia frenzy. Without a shred of proof it's the Russian government be it directly or indirectly through Russian mafia. What about MI5/6 creating a desired political situation or as stated earlier by b, suicide or preventing a handover of some sort (remember to what lengths the USA went with Snowden, Miranda and Morales). Corbyn just proved to be a sellout just like any other politician in power.

Posted by: xor | Mar 16 2018 18:43 utc | 31

"If we want to prevent a unpredictable clash between nuclear armed powers, which could kill millions within just a few moments, we must all publicly voice our doubts and expose the false accusations made against Russia and other countries."
Exactly. I strongly hope many more will do so.
By now Boris 'the menace' Johnson accuses Putin personally. This man wants to go down history as the one who ignited the world.

Posted by: Pnyx | Mar 16 2018 18:55 utc | 32

In December 2017, the BBC was given unprecedented access to Porton Down. They produced a 1 hour documentary on the place including details on animal and human experimentation. The video was available up to a few days ago. It has now been removed.

Original BBC page - video not available:

Video link at head of this page: [Edit: the page itself is now unavailable]

It is still available here:

Posted by: Anonymous | Mar 16 2018 18:56 utc | 33

@31 xor... corbyn could have said a lot of things... what i find amazing is it has to be russia.. no consideration that another state player would consider such a thing - like ukraine which clearly has an axe to grind with russia, under their present us masters, or israel, which are unhappy with the changes that haven't worked out according to plan in syria... they are at the top of the list of possibilities... corbyn is showing himself to be another stooge (- not stoge ghosthip!) for the empire..

Posted by: james | Mar 16 2018 19:08 utc | 34


Indeed, note also that it is "of course" Russia's fault that we are on the verge of war, rather NOT the hysterical anti-russian stance past years no no move on, sigh.

Posted by: Anon | Mar 16 2018 19:21 utc | 36

@Bakerpete - I hear the the English team will boycott the World Cup after the group stage.

@farm ecologist - I have corrected that "killed" in my piece. It was wrong. Thanks for pointing it out.

@pantaraxia - I didn't know of that Browder connection. Sounds plausible.

@likklemore - , other serious journalists are now citing your diligence on this plot.
Who would that be?
Also: Please don't quote news-sources at such length

@Noirette - yes, there are several other explanations for the Skripal's falling ill. The first local reports (link in my first piece) said that Fentanyl had been found at the bench. Other (unrelated) reports show that it is quite available in Salisbury.

@Norumbega - I don't see a link for the account of the doctor who administered first aid.
The doctor part is in the BBC piece linked some lines before that passage

Posted by: b | Mar 16 2018 19:21 utc | 37

The "Russia did it" meme becomes more and more shrill and desperate every day. Trump's reticence is because he owes Russians mucho money, not because of any thing else. Business uber alles for him. Screw the working scum of the U$A and the globe.

The empire needs enemies to justify the hundreds of billions given to the MIC corporations. Enemies will continue to be manufactured. Screw the needs of the people.

Posted by: ben | Mar 16 2018 19:38 utc | 38

From Craig Murray's article and from a comment I found at anther site, it seems likely that Portland Down have established that the poison used (or at least detected on the sample tested) was an AChE inhibitor. Apparently other tests can be adapted to check for an AChE inhibitor. Nerve agents designed for CW are AChE inhibitors, but so are all the chemicals in this very long list at wikipedia.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Mar 16 2018 19:46 utc | 39

Barring such scenarios like announcing a discovery of nerve poison when some mild poison was added to food that Skripals ate just by state fiat, probably some "Novichok" matching published molecular structure was made, and as surmised by experts before, the stuff is not particularly lethal -- you should not add Roundup to your food either, but if you do, there is still some hope; using Novichok instead of soy souse may be similar.

If the molecules were indeed "Novichok" and not particularly lethal, it is very hard to fathom why Russians would resort to it. One can imagine a diabolic plot to discredit western governments by causing the latter to go ape, but really, isn't it enough to watch and comment what they do already?

One argument for Russian involvement is that while many intelligence agencies would be capable of doing it, only Russians would be sufficiently barbaric and brutal to go with something like that. Civilized countries would use different methods. Drones. A team of 48 assassins with poisonous injections, administered to the target in a quiet hotel room without disturbing the public (take that, drones!). And, in the name of Norway, they NEVER do it in bucolic suburbs.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Mar 16 2018 19:48 utc | 40

@ pantaraxia (8)
@b (37)

"..on March 6 Browder began giving testimony to a UK Commons select committee where he stated it was a “Kremlin hit” and “I believe they want to kill me. They haven’t figured out a way yet where they can kill me and get away with it."

Browder!? Given that guy's history and background, the fact his name comes up in connection with this at all makes him #1 suspect, to my mind. He's a master at getting away with murder by dragging the red herrings of Putin and Russia across the trail.

Posted by: laninya | Mar 16 2018 19:59 utc | 41

As yet the UK has been unable to give OPCW the molecular structure or chemical makeup of the poison. UK representative gave a statement to OPCW including the UK 'evidence". This included neither designation code of a known substance nor chemical makeup of an unknown substance.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Mar 16 2018 20:00 utc | 42

Considering that this crap is not very solid for May I was wondering how far she would go to keep this from blowing back on her. Do the father and daughter die? If they are allowed to recover how will they be presented to the media? Then I had a really frightening thought; what if the police officer dies? Then all bets are off and no amount of real evidence will fix this.

Posted by: Bakerpete | Mar 16 2018 20:02 utc | 43

@the pessimist (21)

To me, this is more reminiscent of the justification of the Iraq invasion Version 2.

Saddam's Iraq was required to prove they did NOT have chemical weapons to lift crippling sanctions regimes, rather than western governments bearing the onus of proving Iraq DID have chemical weapons. As usual, the west made lots of grandiose accusations but little in the way of credible evidence.

Theresa May is doing the same thing, demanding the Russian Federation show cause why they shouldn't be regarded as being guilty as sin (although I don't understand why anyone would think Russian operatives would be so unprofessional as to use a nerve agent that could be linked to their home country rather than simply shoot him and make it look like a robbery gone wrong... like Seth Rich?).

It's the same trick / tactic. It's very difficult to prove a negative, if not downright impossible.

So much for innocent until proven guilty, a bedrock of jurisprudence pretty much the world over. Western governments don't seem to able to live up to their own self-declared principles.

Posted by: Ant. | Mar 16 2018 20:11 utc | 44

The best article you've ever written.

My goodness!

Thank you Sir

Posted by: Skeletor | Mar 16 2018 20:14 utc | 45

Re Peter AU 1@42

I guess that this is the only strategy Her Majesty Government may have. Whatever the formula, OPCW would have to give the only possible opinion that it had to be produced by a secret lab that could be located in at least 50 different countries. UK and Russia had easier time locating Skripals than most, but they were not living in hiding, so any international reporter could track them (some passing command of Russian and English highly recommended, but not necessary).

Next, OPCW could actually test the substance, and in case of mediocre lethality (poor rats sacrificed in testing!), the case of distinct "Russian" brutality of the incident would be rather weak, and the suspicions could be directed at the civilized countries.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Mar 16 2018 20:15 utc | 46

Hopehely @ 9:

I've also come to a similar conclusion as you have, that the Skripals were hit by food poisoning. It is known that they went to Zizzi's in Salisbury for a seafood risotto lunch. For those who don't live in the UK or have not visited there (both apply to me), the restaurant is part of the Zizzi restaurant franchise in the UK. I've been told by a UK-based commenter at The New Kremlin Stooge blog that the food (Italian cuisine) is vile.

Botulism might be possible - it doesn't cause unconsciousness but it does cause eyelids to droop so the victim appears to look unconscious - and ciguatera poisoning (symptoms include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and various neurological symptoms that can last for years) from eating fish is also a possibility. Shellfish poisoning is another possibility. Cooking does not remove or destroy the toxins.

If we assume though that the Skripals poisoned themselves at home (accidentally or deliberately), then between the time they left home, had lunch (during which time they apparently had to wait 40 minutes for their meal), then went to a local pub for drinks and went to the shopping mall park bench, and the time they were found unconscious, with Julia Skripal vomiting, fitting and defecating, at least 90 - 120 minutes (up to 2 hours then) must have passed. They are now in Salisbury District Hospital in a critical condition.

Detective Sergeant Nick Bailey goes to their home after the Skripals are found, finds something and passes out almost straight away. He is also being treated in Salisbury District Hospital. His condition is serious but not critical. He apparently is able to talk although AFAIK no-one outside the police has been able to interview him.

Compare and contrast his condition with the Skripals' condition. I think it is very likely that what contaminated the police officer is not the same thing that afflicts the Skripals. Could Bailey have been used to plant something at the Skripals' home and in doing so contaminated himself?

Also we must ask why the Skripals have not been moved to a specialist hospital.

Posted by: Jen | Mar 16 2018 20:26 utc | 47

@bakerpete.. the sad part, aside from those possibilities - are the many innocent people who have died as a result of war, the war on iraq that blair and bush authored for one.. does britian want a repeat of that here? looks like they are crazy enough, given their political leaders at this moment..

Posted by: james | Mar 16 2018 20:44 utc | 48

Corbyn is doing ok. Like everybody else he is using this incident for politics. In this case to attack Russian donations to the Conservative Party.

Posted by: somebody | Mar 16 2018 20:52 utc | 49

i have to say there are more salient and intelligent points made in this comment section than the entirety of US MSM. a low bar, but still noteworthy.

i immediately thought of the reptilian brit wanker who said "russia is at our doorstep fer realz! moar military welfare plz!" a week or so before this incident. in lieu of any actual threat, this litvinenko redux was thrown together. also the steele dossier. and syria.

there are so many moving parts to the anti-russia(/china) machine that it's difficult to pinpoint which cog is turning the hardest.

what stands out to me for the UK specifically (besides another disappointing case of corbyn lacking spine to match his heart) is that the same western media and politicians who over the past months have painted may as a "BrexitTard" (when she's actually just a typical neoliberaltard) and mocked her obvious lack of leadership qualities (or even basic intellect) are suddenly treating her as a pasty version of colin powell holding his little vial. ditto boris johnson who has been derided as "brit trump" but overnight has credibility because "the enemy of russia is my friend". i guess if they can rehab subhuman neocons like kristol and frum then anyone can get a "cold war makeover".

as for WWIII and such, i try to stay positive. there are still a lot of rich twats with money invested in various russian ventures and china would definitely join in on russia's side if nukes became a real possibility. alone, a stalemate in war with the west. together, start watching "the road" and adapting your favorite recipes for human meat since that's all we'll have to eat. plus you can always count on good old fashioned western cowardice should the draft be reinstated and rejected by the coddled masses.

Posted by: the pair | Mar 16 2018 20:53 utc | 50

Jen @47--

Excellent points!

The cui bono question's answer is those wanting at all/any costs to keep the Unipolar status of the Outlaw US Empire intact--an impossible task given the resources of the Multipolar Alliance.

I see many parallels to 911's aftermath and the MH17 shootdown in this Big Lie promotion. Unfortunately, I don't see relations improving for quite a long time.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 16 2018 21:05 utc | 51

We know that the western « advisers » in Aleppo were exfiltrated through buses with opaque windows when the city went back to the Syrian state. The Russians allowed this. Now they are so angry that they probably have refused the same thing to happen for the advisers still in Ghouta. Wouldn’t this explain a lot of things?

Posted by: claudeS | Mar 16 2018 21:07 utc | 52

Seeing the first photo, becomes very easy to know the origin of White Helmets: the seed never falls too far from the tree.
Bunch of incompetent idiots! They do not even get a picture with a minimum of credibility? Are the English people so stupid as to swallow this shit?

Posted by: Permafrost | Mar 16 2018 21:09 utc | 53

If we want to prevent a unpredictable clash between nuclear armed powers, which could kill millions within just a few moments, we must all publicly voice our doubts and expose the false accusations made against Russia and other countries.

With due respect, I beg to differ.
If we must all publicly - do - anything let's choose something measurable with a permanent long-term benefit. Western Democracy has been infected with a cancer called Neoliberalism (= Privatise Everything).
It can be treated, and cured, by demanding that our local MPs propose, endorse, and PASS Laws making it illegal for politicians to accept, and for anyone at all to offer, 'political donations'. Refusal to do so may safely be interpreted as a reliable indicator that he/she is representing the interests of an entity other than the people who voted for him/her and should step down so that The People can select a trustworthy replacement.

That's Step 1 towards disinfecting Democracy and until The People have gotten off their asses and tried it, I don't want to hear, and won't listen to, any more feeble-minded whingeing about 'bad' government.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Mar 16 2018 21:16 utc | 54

The truth on the British Russian scene is coming out slowly.

This here is the BBC

When Britain wanted to extradite ex-KGB agent Andrei Lugovoi over the death of Kremlin critic Alexander Litvinenko, the press noted that Mr Lugovoi had been linked to a supposed escape attempt for Glushkov in 2001.

So Glushkov was killed after the Salisbury incident same as Berezovsky (Glushov's partner) got killed after the Litvinenko case.

Both the Litvinenko case or the Skripal case either completely incompetent or planned to cause a public crisis.

Posted by: somebody | Mar 16 2018 21:17 utc | 55

Syria is a war of direct conflict between Russia and the US. It also is a war of proxies used by both sides.

Russia seems to have taken revenge/payback for the PMC Wagner deaths dealt out by CENTCOM a month ago.

"All 7 U.S. Troops Aboard Helicopter Killed in Crash in Iraq."

Some reports have it at 9 dead.

"The aircraft, a modified version of the Black Hawk helicopter, is also used by Special Operations pararescue specialists."

Coverup in full process. Ain't the first time in Syria nor will it be the last.

Syria requires a decisive victory by one side or the other.
How much pain can the US take? We already know the Russians feel pain differently.
They show it with their heroic acts of immolation rather than capture.

For Russia, Syria is not an option. It is as necessary to be there as it is to have Crimea and the port for the Black Sea Fleet. Russia has returned to the ME, to the Mediterranean, to North Africa (Egypt-Libya).

The US refuses to accept Russia as a great power.
When it finally takes notice of the body count from payback that is coming, from tactics that cannot win in Syria, from a strategy based on hegemony and Exceptionalist ideology, then the US will retreat.

Syria will be decided by missiles (and missile defenses). That is why it is clear, Russia will prevail.

Posted by: Red Ryder | Mar 16 2018 21:29 utc | 56

Here is a scenario:

  1. Maybe the Skripals were poisoned for some unrelated reason. Or they simply overdosed on fentanyl.

  2. The event was piggybacked a few days later for promoting the War on Russia. Traces of some 'novichok' agent were left around Salisbury to be found by Porton Down experts.

This may be a bit too complex to pass Occam's razor. But suppose there is an opportunistic infowar operation just waiting for the right trigger event to launch their false-flag spin.

Posted by: Petri Krohn | Mar 16 2018 21:44 utc | 57

Andrew Korybko's view of events is rather different:

"Rather, an unemotional reading of the international situation reveals that this conclusion [imminent end of world] is hyperbole, and that all previous indicators suggested that events would expectedly move in this direction. Instead of being “out of control”, everything is actually “under control” — the US and its allies are only doing what Russia had already predicted they would, and it’s difficult to imagine that anyone in the Kremlin is surprised by the latest twists and turns in the New Cold War."

I've noted numerous comic strips reflecting on the issue of truth telling, one asking if it's okay to lie since the President and media lie all the time; the answer being no, it's never okay to lie--5 during this past week alone.

Pepe Escobar's been busy thus week with 3 articles published at, 2 related to BRI, while this one examines why it's Putin's fault that he continues to win.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 16 2018 21:57 utc | 58

"We know that the western « advisers » in Aleppo were exfiltrated through buses with opaque windows when the city went back to the Syrian state. The Russians allowed this. Now they are so angry that they probably have refused the same thing to happen for the advisers still in Ghouta. Wouldn’t this explain a lot of things?"

Posted by: claudeS | Mar 16, 2018 5:07:10 PM | 52

Most probably. Indeed, I think the Russians should retaliate by disclosing once for all the "real" role of the US and "its allies" in Syria, to the knowledge of all the US and, especially, European citizens who have suffered and have been submitted to martial law on account of the same terrorists they are supporting, trainning, arming and advising in Syria. This issue of falsely accusing Russia has gone too far.

BTW, that not only were "advisors" who fled from Alepo, but when the "Baba Amro caliphate" fell down to the SAA, some UK and French spies disguised as journalist of very renown media were caught and allowed to leave through a corridor straight to Lebanon in a truce...That was at the very beginning of the war....

Posted by: Fatima Manoubia | Mar 16 2018 22:02 utc | 59

@Petri (57)

More correctly, William of Ockham's Razor, or even Aristotle's, the first documented exposition of the Law of Parsimony.

No such person as Occam, an invention.

See here:

Posted by: Ant. | Mar 16 2018 22:10 utc | 60

I don't think there was a slow response to the event. Rather the press seemed remarkably well prepped in what was just a temporary closure of an A&E for non-urgent customers.
Plenty of TV and radio coverage on the same day. Lots more coverage the next day.

True there was a drip drip feed of news, and direct references to Senior Sources waited for a few days. But it all seemed pretty well staged managed to me.

As well as Craig Murray's good comments on “of a type developed by Russia”, I'd also add that I have yet to see any official with a name and a title actually say it was Novichok or even a nerve agent. May says her intelligence services say so. No one says it in their own name. Very like WMD.

Posted by: michael d | Mar 16 2018 22:14 utc | 61


There is a publication online from November 2016 by Iranian scientists that describes the synthesis of Novichok agents. The paper includes precise synthesis instructions, including where to source the raw materials. The synthesized compounds may not be the exact ones most suitable for weaponization, but they resemble A-230 sited A-242 in the literature.

Hosseini, S. E., Saeidian, H., Amozadeh, A., Naseri, M. T., and Babri, M. (2016) Fragmentation pathways and structural characterization of organophosphorus compounds related to the Chemical Weapons Convention by electron ionization and electrospray ionization tandem mass spectrometry. Rapid Commun. Mass Spectrom., 30: 2585–2593. doi: 10.1002/rcm.7757.

All the chemicals required for the microsynthesis of O-alkyl N-[bis(dimethylamino)methylidene]-P-methylphosphonamidates were purchased from Sigma-Aldrich (St. Louis, MO, USA), Fluka (Neu-Ulm, Germany), and Merck (Darmstadt, Germany), and were used as received. Methylphosphonic difluoride (Scheme 1, cpd 1) was synthesized by use of a method described elsewhere.[18] Isopropanol-d6 was prepared by reduction of acetone-d6 by sodium borohydride.[19]

Unlike the other articles in the Rapid Communications in Mass Spectrometry journal this article is available for free with all diagrams.

Posted by: Petri Krohn | Mar 16 2018 22:36 utc | 62

38 On Putin having "something on trump", which one sees often in WaPo/NYT comment sections:

Trump's supporters and the man himself could not care less what Putin may have, and that includes the films of the proverbial dead boy or live girl in bed with him.

Posted by: Bart Hansen | Mar 16 2018 22:46 utc | 63

38 On Putin having "something on trump", which one sees often in WaPo/NYT comment sections:

Trump's supporters and the man himself could not care less what Putin may have, and that includes the films of the proverbial dead boy or live girl in bed with him.

Posted by: Bart Hansen | Mar 16 2018 22:48 utc | 64

...continued from 62.

Tanks to Charles Wood for finding the Iranian article on Novichok agents. More on the Iranian work here:

Iranian chemists identify Russian chemical warfare agents - Ryan De Vooght-Johnson, Spectroscopy now, Jan. 1, 2017

The Iranian researchers synthesised five ‘Novichok’ agents, along with four deuterated analogues. They were all O-alkyl N-[bis(dimethylamino)methylidene]-P-methylphosphonamidate compounds (i.e. molecules with the typical nerve agent phosphorus group coupled to N,N,N’N’-tetramethylguanidine). The O-alkyl group was varied, with the methoxy, ethoxy, isopropoxy, phenoxy, and 2,6-dimethylphenoxy derivatives being prepared. The syntheses were carried out on a micro-scale in order to minimize exposure.

Posted by: Petri Krohn | Mar 16 2018 23:02 utc | 65

@Bart (63 or 64)

Hang on! What film are you alleging? Do you have a link? Are you certain this isn't a Epstein film of Slick Willie?

Posted by: Ant. | Mar 16 2018 23:03 utc | 66

What if the "policeman" was actually the one who administered the poison and they just call him a policeman?

Posted by: Oscar Romero | Mar 16 2018 23:06 utc | 67

The 'Skripal affair' is yet another chapter in a very long and inept but mesmerizing for many western geo-political 'soap opera', but without the soap. The constant theme: Russia is the enemy.

And Russia really is the enemy, because it alone has effectively stood militarily up to the explicit adopted US geo-political doctrine of global military 'Full Spectrum Dominance'; also, Russia is an effective opposition to the implicit ambition of the insane western dominant-oligarchic-network of achieving global financial, political, and cultural 'full spectrum dominance'.

Now there are numerous sub-stories – agendas – involved, but what they amount to are many threads in the playing out of what appears to be turning out to be an unsuccessful attempt at centralized global totalitarianism.

Russia is out of western control.

The completely unhinged 'Russia did it' outpouring of bs obsession of much of the American establishment and media in response to the Trump election glitch, again, is at core a recognition that Russia really is the enemy: the enemy of GMO food, the enemy of molesting children, the enemy of the western militaristic depravities, of western mass media's and politics' culture of deception.

And with Russia out of control, China has had a chance to strengthen itself, and straighten its back, and many other countries are trending in that direction. The unipolar ambition is unraveling.

The US dollar as reserve currency, and the US domination of IMF and World Bank are at stake. And sensible populist policies pertaining to finance may begin to infiltrate the debt slavery system that currently dominates and hobbles so many countries.

So I interpret the Skripal affair as a truly pathetic and desperate but thematic ploy that will over time rebound on the liars. The incident will underline the insane extent to which brazen stupid lies are relied upon by the western establishment. Notable is how immediately 'on cue' the foaming at the mouth indignation over Russia's 'terrible deed' has been in much British mass media and among British politicians. The hypocrisy is breathtaking. Was it Orwell who noted that the great English cultural failing was hypocrisy?

All the above doesn't make the situation any less dangerous. Insanity and stupidity are not great qualities for influential people with nuclear weapons to have, or when facing those with nuclear weapons.

Posted by: Robert Snefjella | Mar 16 2018 23:12 utc | 68


This is an outstanding post. The best and most important article that I have read in the years that I’ve visited here. I don’t know how you do it.

I believe that the Skripals were attacked with a nerve poison; but not the highly toxic binary “newcomer” agent identified by the Prime Minister. This incident is serving two purposes; to silence a likely source for the Steele Dossier and as a False Flag to further scapegoat Russia. It is inconceivable that the Russian Federation did it. This is too dangerous and not in their national interests.

Western democracies have been overthrown by corporate mafia families. The military, intelligence officers, and civil servants, who worked for the public good, have vanished. The hysteria is so great my only conclusion is that the decision has been made to go to war. Withdrawal from Syria is impossible. Last night, NewsHour reported “Syria’s war keeps raging, amid threats of a new Hezbollah-Israel conflict”. An American war with Iran is inevitable. It will draw in NATO and Russia. This will be five nuclear powers at war. The Apocalypse is inevitable.

Posted by: VietnamVet | Mar 16 2018 23:18 utc | 69

54;Can't have that,will we?zionist(with us dollars)in control.

Posted by: dahoit | Mar 16 2018 23:25 utc | 70

interesting post on this topic here with some interesting info, to which i am going to quote - from the comment section..

Paul Greenwood John Jones • 18 hours ago

Dr David Kelly worked at Porton Down, when he informed Andrew Gilligan about his reservations on WMD following inspections in Iraq he was "suicided"

John Jones Paul Greenwood • 17 hours ago

Yes, David Kelly worked physically at Porton Down as part of his job for DSTL at the time.

There is a large wiki entry on the Hutton Enquiry and of the post mortum on Dr Kelly

Again, worth a read - I suspect a few people have a different interpretation than you on the scientists tragic death .

Paul Greenwood John Jones • 17 hours ago

I am sure they do as they do on Skripal's situation, whatever that might be. Do you know if he is alive/dead/ventilated or in hospital or inside Porton Down ?

John Jones Paul Greenwood • 16 hours ago

From BBC news I understand that both Skripal anf his daughter and the Police Sargeant. are in hospital in Salisbury, I think the PM.even spoke to the Police Sargeant.

I genuinely doubt that the Dstl site at Porton Down has either the hospital nor isolation facilities /protocols needed for a care situation.

Posted by: james | Mar 16 2018 23:53 utc | 71

Hopehely @9, Jen @47

Did police sergeant Nick Bailey also eat the seafood risotto at the Zizzi restaurant? In fact, did all the 20 people alleged to have been affected have the same dish for lunch?

Posted by: Petri Krohn | Mar 16 2018 23:55 utc | 72

Those criticising Corbyn-for remarks quoted, without context in the media which hates him- are unconsciously succumbing to the Establishment's game which is to use this false flag to crush dissidents and, in particular (at a time when the internal campaign to clear out the Blairite apparatchiki sabotaging the Labour Party is at a climax, with the selection by the NEC of a new full time General Secretary due within a few days) the Labour Left.

The left has never been closer to power in its long history. The British ruling class live in fear of Corbyn declaring independence from the media, the punditocracy, the deep state and the City of London. They fear him because he promises to reform the tax system, renationalise the utilities, clean up the relationshop between Westminster and the kleptocracy, leave the EU and question the purpose of NATO.
These things may not impress anyone here but they make The Establishment in the UK tremble in fear. And their equivalents around Europe too dread the example of a revitalised welfare state, a reversal of Thatcherism and neo-liberalism and one of the main leaders of the Stop the War movement of 2003 coming to power.

If Corbyn uses the opportunity to point out that the crooked oligarchs who hate Putin are hand in glove with the City and the Tories, good luck to him. If he suggests that they may well be involved in assassinations in the UK, he could be right- what he has not claimed is that there is any evidence at all of Russian governmental involvement.

Let's look at the Big Picture: the only people in the US close to power who want war with Russia are the neo-cons. And most of them (Krystol, Boot, Frum etc) are just web cam whores selling warmongering language because it is easy work.). Nobody seriously believes that the full spectrum domination of the globe is anything more than an old pipedream, the last whiff of the Manifest Destiny gas which was almost empty when Frederic J. Turner was a lad.
There will be wars but only where there are no formidable enemies- the USA will fight anyone who doesn't have an air force or long range missiles.
The main enemy of the US ruling class and its equivalents throughout the west and in most of the world is the people- it is them that they fear and hate. And for ages they have kept them waiting for justice, for their share of the wealth that they have created by claiming that war is coming, that the pocket money for kids, the pension funds, the budget for new hospitals must be spent on weapons, to keep the Yellow Peril or the Red Menace at bay.

It has been crystal clear since 1990 that there is no longer any justification for postponing the peace dividend, guaranteeing basic social and economic rights (eg the Four Freedoms from WW II), addressing the problems of the environment, evicting the exploiter from his place at every family's dinner table; putting an end to those living off the homeless and the unemployed, blackmailing the sick, enslaving the vulnerable.
And those-too many of whom are elderly baby boomers who have become fearful of change- unable to see what needs to be done- and that it needs doing sooner rather than later- that demographic is shrinking, along with newspaper readership, believers in the MSM and those who, with straight faces, can call a choice between Trump and Clinton (and their clones around the world) a political contest.
The bottom line is that, thanks to b and others like him or ready to share these posts, we all know that the Skrival story is bullshit from soup to nuts. We know who benefits from such lies and hysterical campaigns and it is not us, or the rest of the 99% of the world's population who matter..
What they/we want is a community in which we can live together in peace stop wasting our precious lives on the ideology, practice and organisation of war and murderous competition and the first tiny step in that direction involves replacing our evil rulers with people more in tune with our desires and more receptive to our wishes.

Posted by: bevin | Mar 16 2018 23:59 utc | 73

So what's the end game?

Is the Predator Class preparing to start Hot War with Russia sometime real soon? Everyone knows that once the shooting starts things would rapidly escalate into a nuclear confrontation that can easily spin out of control?

Are we seriously mobilizing down that path? This is shaping up to be worst disaster since the Cuban Crisis which the Deep State also instigated... JFK vowed to terminate the CIA- Deep State and was taken out by the Dulles- CIA Wet Works Division in retaliation.

Posted by: posa | Mar 17 2018 0:05 utc | 74

The ? was asked above about 'how do all the EU puppets all of a sudden agree with PM May et al?'. Well, maybe one should make a study of how blackmail works...just sayin'...!

Posted by: John Hawk | Mar 17 2018 0:06 utc | 75

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 16, 2018 5:57:23 PM | 58

Yes, I, neither, think the world is coming to its end, just too many miserable and coward people at the helms of certain nations to be true....They have more fear than shame...

In fact, I am starting planning a new travel....

Btw, since it could happen that the beautiful country of Uzbekistan got somehow demonized and "uglyizied" by this event, I would strongly recommend you visiting it before the IS place their ugly buttocks there.

Nukus, particularly, is worth a visit by its excellent museum of Russian Avant Garde....but you must also visit the desert fortresses...and stroll on the streets to meet its friendly and lively citizens...

Once there, you may also feel inclined to arrive in Moynaq, former Aral Sea coast and lively fishing harbour with a flourishing processed fish industry, now a wasteland...

Then, be sure to have enough days so as to not miss the oblied old cities of Khiva, Bukhara and finally Samarkanda´s magnificent Registan and mausoleums...You may love Shah-i-Zinda( Street of the Death ) and the Ulugh Beg Observatory....

Posted by: Fatima Manoubia | Mar 17 2018 0:21 utc | 76

The loss of the Middle East is in prospect for the US, now the UK, France and Germany are proposing to the other EU members, sanctions against Iran because of their missile defence program and 'meddling in the Middle East' an obvious sop to Donald Trump.Why are the UK population being propagandized so much, could this be the reason.....
“Of course the people don’t want war. But after all, it’s the leaders of the country who determine the policy, and it’s always a simple matter to drag the people along whether it’s a democracy, a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism, and exposing the country to greater danger.”
— Herman Goering at the Nuremberg trials.

Posted by: harrylaw | Mar 17 2018 0:28 utc | 77

Petri Krohn @ 72: Depending on who you read or listen to, up to 38 people have reportedly been poisoned but their names have not been released and no photos of them have as yet been released.

It's a pretty strange poison that has varying effects on different people. The doctor who gave first aid was unaffected as well. But the narrative has been inconsistent from one day to the next. This suggests that most of what we are reading, seeing or hearing on the news is being improvised on the fly. We need to reserve judgement on who is responsible until more details become available (if they ever do).

Posted by: Jen | Mar 17 2018 0:46 utc | 78

@ harrylaw with the quote from Herman Goering

Thanks for that. It is quite obvious that strategy is being used again. Where are the countervailing forces today? Perhaps only you, I and the rest of the 99%

How to get the 99% to stand up and say NO! And as other have written, we need a replacement/upgrade strategy for our governmental leadership so they all work for us and not the 1%.

I derive some pleasure in seeing events seemingly bringing our cultural dysfunction to a crisis, manufactured or otherwise, because the period of social flux provides opportunity for human growth and evolution......will that potential be realized?

Posted by: psychohistorian | Mar 17 2018 0:54 utc | 79

Posted by: xor | Mar 16, 2018 2:43:34 PM | 31
re Corbyn selling out
Is he selling out or is he leaving options open while avoiding confrontation. He may recall what happened to Kelly.

Posted by: frances | Mar 17 2018 0:57 utc | 80

Yes, the world is not coming to an end.
Let's look on the bright side.
These clowns are not taken seriously, nor taken at all, by 99.9% of the world's citizens.
They have NO influence, with their words, on what is actually happening in this wonderful world.
Whether it's in China, or Africa, or Latin America, where the lively people are expanding their lives and their economies, these people mean nothing.
In the Middle East, where Iran and Russia and Iraq are changing realities -- nothing.
In Asia where China is building transport networks, building railways and highways and ports -- nothing.
In fact they are taking each other down. Let's applaud that.
They are unified in their sinking fortunes!
That's a good thing.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Mar 17 2018 0:57 utc | 81

In Orwells 1984 one cant help but question if the perpetual war between the 3 nations is real or not. The purpose of war is clear, that is to consume the excesses of industrial production, while keeping the populace in relative poverty to keep them controllable. The populace is then further controlled by fear of the enemy rival state and can be coerced into accepting their diminished lifestyle and supporting the ruling regime . The limited amount of human life that is expended in these unending conflicts turns this perpetual war into a twisted peace; “War is Peace."

I cant help but think China, Russia and the West are playing the same game with some additional actors in the Middle East taking sides in the pretend conflict. Eric Prince chosen by China to head security for its BRI. Russia leaving business unfinished in Syria. Madness. Putins public declarations of new weapon systems play right into US hands to get larger defense budgets in a time of larger deficits due to tax cuts. He knows as well as anyone the US knows of their capabilities.

On the other side the Trump-Kim silliness. Absurd Russia Gate in US that a 10 yo should be embarrassed to believe in , and this nonsense by May in the UK.

Its all theater IMO. No wonder there are no good movies out there as Hollywood writers are too busy scripting our reality and translating into Russian and Chinese

Posted by: Pft | Mar 17 2018 1:05 utc | 82

news report
The White House sought to quash suggestions that President Trump is too soft on Moscow Thursday, ordering sanctions against Russians alleged to have participated in election meddling and joining allies to condemn the Kremlin for an attempted murder in Britain.
The moves took many skeptical observers by surprise, given that the administration has long been accused of being too sympathetic to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Mar 17 2018 1:07 utc | 83

The West is using the Skripal poisoning to strip Russia of credibility when it defends Syria against false flag chemical weapons attacks staged by their Takfiri dupes to facilitate military attacks by the West on Syria.
In effect they are saying is that Russia is such an egregious offender regarding the use of chemical weapons that they cannot be believed when they come to the defense of the Syrian fact, they are inferring that Russia is more than likely complicit in these chemical weapon attacks.
With obliging media houses and an unthinking general population its foolproof.

Posted by: Othello | Mar 17 2018 1:12 utc | 84

Terrific set of articles, b. Really, even the most cursory overview of actual, known facts, viewed in the known political webs and the known modus operandi of the Western intelligence (sic) services, there is truly no way it was a Russian "hit." Not sure what really happened, but sure it wasn't that.

Actually I'm curious about the factor that seemed to have changed--the daughter. Something about her appearance brought this to a head. Did she visit regularly, or was this a portentous meeting? And did she bring good news or bad? We know too little to completely rule out the possibility mentioned early on of a possible joint suicide attempt (supported by the references to fentanyl patches, which seems an odd thing for first responders to have made up if there wasn't something going on). I have seen two pictures of the daughter, and the recent one showed she had lost a lot of weight. That could be healthy, but what if she came to tell Pop that she had terminal cancer, or his request to be allowed to return to Russia was denied. He is friendless and unhappy in a strange country...suicide might not be ridiculous. And only after did it dawn on some MI6 smearmeister how timely it would be to say it was an assassination, performed in the only conceivable way that would immediately implicate Russia. The rest is theater, with the beautiful part being to demand Russia prove it did not use "their" nerve agent, one which appears to have been mostly a theoretical exercise by the USSR that did not really pan out and was likely never actually produced, such that anything "found" could be that damned stuff. Prove this is NOT unicorn shit!

Perhaps more likely, though, would be an alternative. He had reportedly made recent appearances at the Russian embassy, maybe just renewing passport and registration documents, but what if it was more? What if he had been approached with the proposition that since he was the "Russian source" in the Steele dossier, and Russia is tiring of the incessant Russiagate stuff and thought perhaps there was information he could provide which would further discredit Steele? Britain would no longer be safe, so best if he retuned to Russia and be reunited with his daughter. Daughter arrived either to finish sealing the deal, and/or to provide some cover with respect to the return visit to Russia. Western agencies are tipped off (no doubt they have many eyes on Steele an his associates), fear Dad might have talked too much to Daughter, so both are killed, at which point the above theater takes over.

Not enough information to know, of course, but it is curious why the poisoning now, and why him, and why with his daughter? It just seems her appearance on the scened might be tied in with the timing.

Posted by: J Swift | Mar 17 2018 1:15 utc | 85

james (to norumbega)> is your friend...

Jeez, seriously? Even if you thought so in the nineties, after the past 15 years...? There are other search engines, you know (besides the sheer delusion evinced in that statement).

Posted by: Plod | Mar 17 2018 1:15 utc | 86

plod - please don't take everything said literally... i put it in yandex and it gave me the info.. some folks seem unable to realize such a simple thing - using a search engine..

Posted by: james | Mar 17 2018 1:23 utc | 87

The West is using the Skripal poisoning to strip Russia of credibility . . . it's foolproof.
Baloney. See my 81.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Mar 17 2018 1:24 utc | 88

"And most of them (Krystol, Boot, Frum etc) are just web cam whores selling warmongering language because it is easy work.)"

It must be stressed that this is a fetish markers, some customers are partial to pantyhose, some to manly warmongering -- large opponents are preferred, Gaugamela! Gaugamela! thus Iran as opponent, neo-cons being versed in ancient Greek history. Russia lacks in pedigree a bit, and great victories over Russians are not well known in the West, but this is the target for the manliest of the manly. Ah, where is my tissue box!

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Mar 17 2018 1:26 utc | 89

Fatima Manoubia @76--

I would very much like to travel--your trip sounds excellent. My responsibilities unfortunately don't currently allow me that freedom.

Bevin @ 73--

Thanks for your take on Corbyn and situation in UK. Few reference Turner nowadays; it would be entertaining to spend awhile at a good pub having a discussion. Ta!

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 17 2018 1:39 utc | 90

Othello at 84.

I concur. That is the intent.

Posted by: Castellio | Mar 17 2018 1:52 utc | 91

In pure pettiness that is a signature of Trump he has had Sessions fire Andrew Mccabe from the FBI late Friday night, days before he would receive a "full pension".

This from AP
BREAKING: Attorney General Jeff Sessions says he's fired former FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe, effective immediately.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Mar 17 2018 2:14 utc | 92

Reading up on the AChE inhibitors, the grouping that CW nerve agents belong to, I find that thre is a huge amount of ongoing research into new chemical structures both for pesticides and medicine.
The known CW nerve agents were stumbled upon during research for agricultural purposes, but when found too toxic, further developed as chemical weapons.
It seems likely, going by Craig Murray's second article, that Portland Down has detected an organophosphorus chemical of some type - as yet, the chemical structure unknown. For a nerve agent or AChE inhibitor to be known as a chemical weapon, it has to have been manufactured for that purpose.

The three people poisoned by some form of organophosphorus AChE inhibitor, chemical structure as yet unknown. Non military as all three victims alive, but as organophosphorus AChE inhibitors are non reversible, will most likely never recover from whatever state they are in now.

The facts seem to end with three people being poisoned by an unidentified organophosphorus AChE inhibitor. There would be many thousands of these left over/put aside from other research.
The rest, military grade nerve agent, only Russia can produce it, Novichok, ect ect is all narrative.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Mar 17 2018 2:22 utc | 93

Peter AU #93

clarification Re., "as organophosphorus AChE inhibitors are non reversible, will most likely never recover from whatever state they are in now."

Not necessarily. Like other enzymes, AChE gradually turns over in the body. Thus, assuming the victim survives, the poison should be eliminated via the body's normal metabolic and excretory mechanisms, and the irreversibly inhibited AChE gradually replaced by newly synthesized molecules.
To compare, ASA/aspirin in an irreversible inhibitor of an enzyme called cyclooxygenase, whereas ibuprofen inhibits the same enzyme, albeit in a reversible manner.

Posted by: farm ecologist | Mar 17 2018 2:39 utc | 94

The only way to deal with pure black propaganda as a series of cases under umbrella of Putin did it MH17 etc all., and Russia gate or rather Russia hate campaign and with all the coming soon more nonsense and vicious attack of wounded and dying political animals in the west trying to prove themselves useful relevant to global oligarchy before they have their asses kicked as ineffective tools for manipulation and confusion of enslaved masses is to ignore it as it is only a theatrical performance aimed to scare people into submission under fake threat of war.

Putin meek or no real response for the series of provocations since at least 2012 is telling the truth of reality of situation namely scared populations. Works for all sides and is beneficial for all trusted politicians who only lie when their lips are moving.

Putin was poling in high fifties to low sixties in 2012 recently polled in eighties and even in nineties when more viciously attacks on Russia was unleashed. What not to like, seen as defended of mother Russia under senseless accusations would rise polls even of hatred Yeltzin as Russian Byzantine politics dictates and what brought support for widely hated Stalin even after mass cleansing of the party and wiping out families deemed his enemies , Russians stood up for him as a symbol of the nation. Putin did not loose on any of that nonsense and in contrast consolidate his power while in the same time build concensus among supporting oligarchy, even Berezovsky change his mind about Putin along that lines.

Also a joke of sanctions against Russia brought no harm to Russia but only benefit as they shed dependence of the west but to Europe and helped to create chaos and let a bunch of puppets of Washington to take over roles of frontmen creating conditions of another bailout this time, since 2008 bailout of banks, multinationals,insurance companies, car companies, and hitech and energy companies now we witness bailout of MIC and war industry on all sides . You want to see nukes flying let May seize all assets of Russian oligarchy in UK but that will never happen, Putin meek attempt of doing so in Russia made his western target so he backed down as releasing Chodakovsky and others like double agents proved.

Do not be fooled, the only war that is coming is vicious war against ordinary people forced into slavery by united global oligarchy who are loosing their propaganda edge as more peoaple wake up from torpor of national politics.

Posted by: Kalen | Mar 17 2018 2:41 utc | 95

typo in #94 - meant to write "ASA/aspirin is an irreversible inhibitor..."

Posted by: farm ecologist | Mar 17 2018 2:47 utc | 96

farm ecologist
Thanks. I have read that the non reversible inhibitors bind to the receptors blocking AChE?

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Mar 17 2018 3:12 utc | 97

Excellent journalism, b.

@68 Robert Snefjella -

I agree totally with your points. The Skripal affair is more than unraveling, it's rebounding with every wrong action it takes. In its overblown hysteria and vitriol, it is destroying, far more than enforcing, the power of mass lies in the UK - in my view.

@73 bevin -

Agreed that the UK is very alarmed by Corbyn, in the ways you state. I appreciate your summary, I hadn't seen any news about what he said yet. I confess I was falling into disappointment. Silly me.

And of course, it's always been the war of the rich against the poor, on a planet that produces abundance for all, but for the plunderers who become and remain rich by stealing from the poor. This is the only war there ever was, with greed at its root.


As to the hegemonic west, there will be no war. What we're seeing now IS the war. This is all they have to throw at Russia, and China and Iran, etc. This is how they fight, using all the power they can gather, and this is all they have. Putin on March 1 destroyed all possible military options for them, beyond spiteful attacks on the defenseless, and the suicide moves of proxies.

What we are hearing in this latest opportunistic attack on Russia is the howl of insane rage, and the tantrums of willful children who are actually provoking to be slapped, just to return them to their senses.

I think Russia will be judicious with that slap, and execute it perfectly, with as much mercy as the situation allows. The US has been begging for it for a long time, and Russia has had plenty of time to plan multiple scenarios. Syria would be an excellent place for it to happen.

Posted by: Grieved | Mar 17 2018 3:32 utc | 98

Major General Igor Konashenkov of the Russia MoD replies to the British Defense Secretary's comment that "Russia should shut up and go away":

"The rhetoric of an uncouth shrew demonstrated by the Head of the British Ministry of Defense makes his utter intellectual impotence perfectly evident. All this confirms not only the nullity of all accusations towards Russia we have been hearing from London for the last several years but also that the “accusers” themselves are nonentities.

Great Britain has long turned not only into a cozy nest for defectors from all over the world but also into a hub for all sorts of fake news-producing agencies: from the British “Syrian Observatory for Human Rights” to the created by a British intelligence officer pseudo-Syrian “White Helmets”.

As to boorish words of the British Defense Minister regarding Russia, it seems that in the absence of the real results of the professional activity, rudeness is the only weapon remaining in the arsenal of the Her Majesty’s Military."

Posted by: Perimetr | Mar 17 2018 3:34 utc | 99

Peter AU @97

AChE is short for acetylcholinesterase, which breaks down the neurotransmitter acetylcholine (ACh).

ACh activates both nicotinic and muscarinic acetylcholine receptors, so rendering AChE inactive would greatly increase ACh and thus hyperstimulate these receptors. This in turn would result in involuntary muscle contractions followed by paralysis (from the nicotinic receptors) plus nasty gastrointestinal effects and inability to breathe (from the muscarinic receptors).

Posted by: farm ecologist | Mar 17 2018 3:39 utc | 100

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