by Sushi for the Saker blog
An Open Letter to the UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson
In the matter of the Skripal affair it appears the facts are once again being fixed around the policy.
While the prior attempt at a “dodgy dossier” had the intent of giving grounds for an attack upon a foreign state, the present course of HMG appears confused, contradictory, alien to the interests of the citizens of the UK, and to the interests of the greater global public.
In a March 22 2018 briefing, the UK ambassador to the Russian Federation alleged that Russian actions “. . . left us with no choice but to conclude that this amounts to an unlawful use of force by the Russian state against the United Kingdom.”
As you are no doubt aware, the wording “an unlawful use of force” in state relations implies an act of war. It has been reported that P.M. May has sought to invoke NATO article 5 against the Russian Federation. She employed similar construction in her address to the HoC on March 12 2018: “. . . this was a direct act by the Russian State against our country.”
These are serious allegations. They hold consequence not just for the citizens of the UK, but have the prospect to mimic the European sleepwalk of June to August 1914. During Archduke Ferdinand’s death rattle, he is reported to have murmured “Es ist nichts.” The potential outcome of recent events can hardly be labelled as “nothing.”
The claim of the UK government to the effect that the compound used against the Skripals was an organophosphate nerve agent (OPNA) with a toxicity 8 to 10 times greater than VX is hardly supported by the facts of the event.
Publicly available imagery discloses that on the evening of March 4 2018, members of the Police Services not wearing CBRN protective equipment, stood in close proximity to the place the Skripals took sick. They were unaffected by any toxin.
At least 8 members of the public assisted the Skripals prior to the emergency service response. These individuals reported contact with the bodily fluids of the victims. They were unaffected. The emergency medical personnel, and the medical staff of Salisbury District Hospital, exhibited no ill effects despite coming in close contact with the victims, and with clothing contaminated by bodily fluids and / or toxic agent. Public imagery of the “decontamination” teams reveals they failed to follow appropriate protocol for dealing with an agent of the toxicity of VX, much less an agent rumoured to be 10 times more toxic. If VX had been present, the “decontamination” effort would have caused further spread of the toxic material, and injured both the decontamination team and those “helpers” who were absent any form of protection.
If the Skripals had in fact been attacked with a “military grade nerve agent,” especially a “military grade nerve agent” for which there is no known antidote, or medical therapy, they would now be dead, and not in the process of recovery. The members of the public rendering assistance, the Police and Fire service, and the medical personnel involved in the Skripals treatment, would also be dead, or fighting for their lives.
These are facts. They are in public evidence. They are therefore known to you, and to the members of HMG.
As reported in the Guardian on March 18 2018, you had knowledge of the fact that a state party, a signatory to the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC), was acting in default of its responsibilities under the CWC and was actively engaged in a program intended to circumvent the provisions of the CWC. Having acquired this knowledge you, by your own admission, did nothing.
Your inaction places the UK in breach of articles: VII 3.; VIII A 1., 40., 44.; IX 2., 8., 9., of the Chemical Warfare Convention to which the UK was a signatory effective April 29 1997.
Such inaction on the part of the UK is unacceptable as it places at risk the welfare of all of those persons the CWC is designed and intended to protect. Your inaction vitiates the very intent and purpose of the CWC.
You cannot have lived on this planet for the last fifteen years and not have come to an appreciation that there exists a group of disaffected persons whose sole goal is the creation of mayhem. These persons have no concern for their own welfare, or the welfare of any other member of the global public. They have utilized whatever weapon comes to hand. These weapons have ranged from large commercial lorries, to home-brew explosives, automatic weapons, saloon cars, and ordinary garden machetes.
The irresponsibility of the UK, and its utter disregard for the obligations and responsibilities imposed upon it by the CWC, has now brought to the attention of the disaffected the great lethality of toxic agents for which there exists no known antidote, toxic agents easily concealed and transported, toxic agents which may be dispersed with ease within the public square, toxic agents which kill and injure even when applied in minute quantities no greater than the amount that would rest upon the head of a pin.
These adduced facts will not have gone unnoticed by the disaffected. Professor Collum of Cornell University has attested that the manufacture of these lethal compounds is within the competence of any person with a modicum of training in chemical science. Over ten years ago the US state department acted to minimize public awareness of these toxic materials largely out of concern that to broadcast any knowledge of them would risk attracting the attention of the disaffected to weapons of incalculable lethality, weapons that promise great bodily harm and major social upheaval in any place of application.
A unique feature of the CWC is its incorporation of the ‘challenge inspection’, whereby any State Party in doubt about another State Party’s compliance can request the Director-General to send an inspection team. Under the CWC’s ‘challenge inspection’ procedure, States Parties have committed themselves to the principle of ‘any time, anywhere’ inspections with no right of refusal. Such inspection can proceed in confidence and not arouse public attention.
Why was this action not taken at the time you first obtained knowledge of another party acting in violation of the CWC?
Why did you wait until an alleged attack was attempted before you raised concerns over information the Foreign Secretary now claims to have had available to him years previously?
Why has the UK still not proceeded with a Challenge Inspection as of this date?
Why did you inform the Russian Ambassador on March 22nd that the toxic agent was A-234, when Gary Aitkenhead, the head of DSTL Porton Down, has indicated only that the toxin was within the OPNA family of agents? How did you come by your specific knowledge?
To which molecular form of A-234 were you making reference? N-(O-Ethyl flourophosphoryl)-N2,N-diethyl-acetaminidine? N-2-diethylaminomethylacetamidido-ethoxyphosphonofluoridate? Or ([(2-chloro-1-methylpropoxy)fluorohydroxyphosphinyl]oxy)carbonimidic chloride fluoride?
Hoenig describes A-234 in Hoenig, Steven L. (2007), Compendium of Chemical Warfare Agents, Mirzayanov in Mirzayanov, Vil S. (2008). State Secrets: An Insider’s Chronicle of the Russian Chemical Weapons Program. And Rohrbaugh in an assay published to the OPCW database (since redacted).
Since Rohrbaugh carried out his synthesis of A-234 under the auspices of the Edgewood Arsenal located in Gunpowder, MD, USA, does this not falsify your claim that only the Russian Federation has the capacity to synthesize this toxin?
I am a firm believer in that process known as “capitalism.” It is the working of capitalist enterprise that generates the funds to pay the salary and pensions of those who claim to be “Public Servants.”
The core attribute of capitalism, the prime reason for its success, is that it is based on the consumer having alternate options and the freedom to exercise choice.
This does not apply to the provision of public services which are delivered in monopoly form, With government you receive only what the state cares to deliver to you: Inadequate health care, living rough, a falling standard of living, military unification with Europe, the FUSION plan for social control, and the prospect of a European war. All of this so some ill-mannered toff can pretend to be in control of events.
The anticipated outcome of your contempt for the welfare of your fellow citizens, and the greater global public, is that within a year there will be a mimic attack, one modeled on the events of Salisbury, or something even more malevolent and destructive.
Such attack needs not succeed as planned to have calamitous effect. A disaffected individual cooking lethal chemistry in a bedsit has every chance of causing an unexpected synthesis which not only terminates his / her life but also snuffs the lives of every nearby innocent. Someone unable to drive a commercial lorry at speed through a crowded pedestrian avenue may prefer the mayhem to be achieved through a chemical act of self-immolation in a crowded theatre.
It has today been over 34 days since the attack in Salisbury yet the Metropolitan Police Service has been unable to ascertain the exact mode or place of application, or the physical characteristics of the toxin. Nor have the security services been able to offer a description of any person or persons who carried out the attack beyond innuendo in attribution to a foreign state. This languid police action gives great comfort to any potential miscreant.
To paraphrase the words of Arthur “Bomber” Harris: “You have sown the wind, and now, you are going to reap the whirlwind.”
It is the public who will bear the brunt of the whirlwind you have unleashed.
You should tender your resignation.
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Prior articles in this series:
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Many persons commenting on the Saker blog, and in information sources other than the MSM, have made statement similar to the following:
While scanning for news that morning I noticed that all of the MSM had basically the same text to describe the event, but in a few cases different headlines, mainly dependent on which side of the Pond they came from. I skipped them, they seemed too coordinated.
This lack of critical coverage on the part of the MSM reduces your ability to come to your own conclusions with respect to the truth. This is a critical issue both with respect to an understanding of this Curious Incident, and to the proper functioning of any democratic polity.
The Saker does not tell me what to write. But he is generous enough, and sufficiently concerned over the current state of geo-strategic chess, that he makes these, and other articles, freely available to a global audience. I see he is presently making an appeal for donations to help defray the cost of hosting the site. I am paid nothing, but I do have an IT background and IT is not inexpensive. I ask that if you find this series informative that you support the site.
The Saker has not asked me to make this request.
Forthcoming Part IX examines motives.
In memory of David Christopher Kelly, CMG (14 May 1944 – 17 July 2003)