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Author Topic: What to do about Russia?  (Read 313 times)
Staffordshire Knot
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« on: March 14, 2018, 02:51:36 am »

Clearly the behaviour of Russia is not to be condoned. They should never have assasinated a Russian traitor on British soil.

However anyone else feel we are just poking an angry bear with a big stick?

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ymrader
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« Reply #1 on: March 14, 2018, 05:51:22 am »

Yep,

mayhem, comply or else..
Russia, er no.
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Staffordshire Knot
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« Reply #2 on: March 14, 2018, 06:08:45 am »

With our military the way it is Russia must be shaking in their boots.
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ymrader
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« Reply #3 on: March 14, 2018, 07:15:51 am »

With our military the way it is Russia must be shaking in their boots.

Indeed, that shiny aircraft carrier will be really useful  Cheesy
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Quelor
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« Reply #4 on: March 14, 2018, 11:56:57 am »

Is there any play over there about the US responses so far?  There's quite a bit of uproar over here at the pundit level at Trump's milquetoast response so far, although it shouldn't be surprising, but I don't think our general population fully understands what happened. Or have you guys finally given up on Trump and, by extension, the US for any type of leadership re: Russia.
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ben wedge
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« Reply #5 on: March 14, 2018, 01:31:07 pm »

Boycott the world cup

That'll larn 'em
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Lone Ranger
Weyland
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« Reply #6 on: March 14, 2018, 02:39:50 pm »

Boycott the world cup

That'll larn 'em

 animated laugh
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"Theresa May’s determination to pursue hard Brexit = stepping off a 10m diving board without checking there is any water in the pool."
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ymrader
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« Reply #7 on: March 14, 2018, 03:10:59 pm »

Is there any play over there about the US responses so far?  There's quite a bit of uproar over here at the pundit level at Trump's milquetoast response so far, although it shouldn't be surprising, but I don't think our general population fully understands what happened. Or have you guys finally given up on Trump and, by extension, the US for any type of leadership re: Russia.

Mayhem went straight the Germany and France. Amazing, European unity.

Oh the irony
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Dutch Rosie
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« Reply #8 on: March 14, 2018, 03:16:20 pm »

Trump providing leadership re Putin, hell's bells, stuck between the Devil and the deep blue sea!
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TGK
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« Reply #9 on: March 14, 2018, 05:34:47 pm »

Can't help but remember 'The Mouse that Roared' here.

With Peter Sellers as Theresa May, and although it goes against the current grain, he may have been a more convincing female impersonator.

Appreciate I'm probably body/face/sex shaming our Theresa, but at least I thought that whilst typing it. Progress in baby steps.
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Quelor
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« Reply #10 on: March 14, 2018, 08:55:54 pm »

Mayhem went straight the Germany and France. Amazing, European unity.

Oh the irony

Well, to be fair, Brexit was before we elected a moron that makes W. look like Lincoln, so I can't really blame her there.  She should look to her Western European allies, because she's not going to get any help here.  
« Last Edit: March 14, 2018, 09:49:20 pm by Quelor » Logged

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Red Herring
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« Reply #11 on: March 15, 2018, 08:36:41 am »

The whole thing is very strange, and it would be nice to have a bit more information and transparency before leaping to conclusions. Let's not forget that these are the same intelligence services that told us Iraq had WMD. They're not infallible.

On the face of it seems like such a ridiculous way to assassinate someone. The Russians are supposed to be good at this kind of thing, you'd have thought they could find a way to make it look like an accident, or at least find a method of assassination that isn't a weapon that breeches international law and can be traced to a Russian laboratory. A kitchen knife for example. Or a hammer. Obviously not a hammer and a sickle - too obvious.

Seriously though - why on earth select a method of assassination that points straight to the Russian government? It makes no sense ... unless:

1: The Russian government wanted it to be clear that they were responsible. If so, then why are they denying it? Are they actually trying to create an international incident, and if they are, shouldn't we take a step back in case a gung-ho response is exactly what they are looking for?

2: The Russian government didn't do it, and are being fitted up. I can't see who would have an incentive to fit them up, Russian mafia perhaps? Ukraine? One of the other former republics with access to these weapons? A faction within the Kremlin? Either way, if it's not the Kremlin we need to back off.

3: Third possibility - the boffins at Porton Down have got it wrong, or have just found what they were asked to look for (as with Iraq). The media started talking very early on about how with chemical weapons it was possible to pinpoint the exact laboratory it was made in. I'm obviously no expert but this just seems very implausible to me - and I felt like I was being prepped for the later news that they had identified it as Russian. Surely somebody with money and know how could make this stuff anywhere? One problem with this is that I would have thought it would be much easier for the British government if this went away. Unlike with Iraq, we have no reason to pick a fight with Russia, and every reason to cover something like this up (the Buzz Feed investigation suggests this is what we have done in the past).

Dunno, it's all very weird. Something else is definitely going on, just no idea what.

Red

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Weyland
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« Reply #12 on: March 15, 2018, 08:50:07 am »

The whole thing is very strange, and it would be nice to have a bit more information and transparency before leaping to conclusions. Let's not forget that these are the same intelligence services that told us Iraq had WMD. They're not infallible.

On the face of it seems like such a ridiculous way to assassinate someone. The Russians are supposed to be good at this kind of thing, you'd have thought they could find a way to make it look like an accident, or at least find a method of assassination that isn't a weapon that breeches international law and can be traced to a Russian laboratory. A kitchen knife for example. Or a hammer. Obviously not a hammer and a sickle - too obvious.

Seriously though - why on earth select a method of assassination that points straight to the Russian government? It makes no sense ... unless:

1: The Russian government wanted it to be clear that they were responsible. If so, then why are they denying it? Are they actually trying to create an international incident, and if they are, shouldn't we take a step back in case a gung-ho response is exactly what they are looking for?

2: The Russian government didn't do it, and are being fitted up. I can't see who would have an incentive to fit them up, Russian mafia perhaps? Ukraine? One of the other former republics with access to these weapons? A faction within the Kremlin? Either way, if it's not the Kremlin we need to back off.

3: Third possibility - the boffins at Porton Down have got it wrong, or have just found what they were asked to look for (as with Iraq). The media started talking very early on about how with chemical weapons it was possible to pinpoint the exact laboratory it was made in. I'm obviously no expert but this just seems very implausible to me - and I felt like I was being prepped for the later news that they had identified it as Russian. Surely somebody with money and know how could make this stuff anywhere? One problem with this is that I would have thought it would be much easier for the British government if this went away. Unlike with Iraq, we have no reason to pick a fight with Russia, and every reason to cover something like this up (the Buzz Feed investigation suggests this is what we have done in the past).

Dunno, it's all very weird. Something else is definitely going on, just no idea what.

Red

Two more possibilities:

4) The Russians knew that Skripal was in the vicinity of Salisbury and that Porton Down is very close. Perhaps they're setting PD up as the possible source.

OR

5) Porton Down did do it to set Russia up as the possible source.

After Brexit and Trump, nothing can be ruled out. Nothing.
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Quelor
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« Reply #13 on: March 15, 2018, 09:03:45 am »

Honestly, I don't think it's that incredulous for Russia to assassinate ex-spys like this and to a) make it just obvious enough to deter current spies from turning, b) because they can, in the current climate of a moral coward like Trump and a semi-isolated UK,  c) as way to test the frayed alliance, and d) for the lols.
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Red Herring
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« Reply #14 on: March 15, 2018, 09:11:45 am »

Two more possibilities:

4) The Russians knew that Skripal was in the vicinity of Salisbury and that Porton Down is very close. Perhaps they're setting PD up as the possible source.

OR

5) Porton Down did do it to set Russia up as the possible source.

After Brexit and Trump, nothing can be ruled out. Nothing.

Funnily enough .... it's just been announced that Porton Down are going to get a tonne of money:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-43405686

UK Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson urged Russia to "go away" and "shut up" as he unveiled plans for a new chemical weapons "defence centre".

He made the comments as he announced a £48m investment in a facility that will be located at the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory in Porton Down.


I'm not one for conspiracy theories, but it does seem oddly inconvenient, as well as a complete waste of money that could only be justified if there was any way in which we could be said to be vulnerable to attack. Even in the light of this attack the justification is darned flimsy. Look at this:

He also announced that, as a precaution, thousands of British troops would be offered vaccinations against anthrax, a spore-producing bacterial disease used in a series of bio-terror attacks in the US in 2001.

British troops who are held at high-readiness will be offered the vaccine on a voluntary basis so they are ready to deploy to areas where the risk of this type of attack exists.


Of course, the Anthrax attack is believed to have been carried out by Bruce Edwards Ivins senior biodefense researcher at the United States Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases :

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bruce_Edwards_Ivins

Maybe we should be investigating those Porton Down boffins ... not giving them more money  Cheesy

Red
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Red Herring
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« Reply #15 on: March 15, 2018, 09:26:36 am »

Honestly, I don't think it's that incredulous for Russia to assassinate ex-spys like this and to a) make it just obvious enough to deter current spies from turning, b) because they can, in the current climate of a moral coward like Trump and a semi-isolated UK,  c) as way to test the frayed alliance, and d) for the lols.

Hi Quelor,

Good to see you back on here!

a)   Yes, that has occurred to me, but I imagine word of mouth would spread very quickly within the spy community. They could get the word out within their own secret service that they were responsible, without doing something so high profile. The buzz feed investigation suggests that this is their usually MO – kill turned agents and make it look like an accident.

b)   Maybe, but it still seems foolish to provoke unnecessarily. They have a lot to gain from not forcing Trump to take a strong anti-Russian line, which he hasn’t been inclined to do hitherto. The UK maybe powerless and isolated in Europe, but the US still has major clout (albeit diminished under Trump)

c)   Quite possibly, and I have heard theories to that effect. It seems plausible to me, just as some suggestions that they tried to influence the referendum vote in favour of Brexit seem plausible (Russia has every reason to want a weakened EU). Or are you talking about the frayed UK/USA alliance not the EU one? Lol, either way, the stronger the UK reaction to this, the more it will test our alliances, which suggests we should go as gently as possible.

d)   Cheesy Well, they’re certainly having a lot of those at our expense.

Red
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ben wedge
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« Reply #16 on: March 15, 2018, 11:02:22 am »

I must say that I am dubious about pointing the finger at Russia - not because they are not capable, but because I doubt they would make it so obvious
As has been said above, the spooks are usually a bit more circumspect (Dr David Kelly for example). A 'mugging gone wrong', a road accident, or a simple disappearance are far simpler and the message would still be apparent to those who may be considered a 'potential problem'..and there would be no escalation to 'offences against International law'

One possibility not yet mentioned is that Russia simply subcontracted the job and the contractor decided on the method.....but there must be some reason for the unnecessarily complicated (and not so far successful) way they chose. I don't buy the 'sending a message' scenario, as has already been said, the message would have been clear regardless of method used.

I agree with Red with the feeling that we were being primed to accept the conclusion that it was Russia....but I really don't see who gains.
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Lone Ranger
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« Reply #17 on: March 15, 2018, 11:14:02 am »

I'd agree. Don't want to get the tin foil hat out of storage, but the two that stand out for me.....

1. The imprecise nature of the 'hit'. The guy is still alive, it isn't a good 'hit'. If believed, it's almost as though 'spies' have to do it in a 'James Bond' way. Why not just kill him? You'd think 'spies' would be less conspicuous, the clue is in the question.

2. Kind of follows on from the first one, releasing a nerve agent is possibly the least conspicuous way of offing anyone, by it's nature it's high profile. I'd have paid some scrote to stab him in the neck, and after a while killed the scrote who did it. Both senseless and believable.

Whoever is behind this, there is more going on than simply offing dissidents/defectors.
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Weyland
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« Reply #18 on: March 15, 2018, 11:35:00 am »

We already 'know' that the Russians -- on Putin's watch -- are prepared to kill someone in the UK in an extremely obvious and trackable way, namely Alexander Litvinenko in 2006, by means of a dose of Polonium in his tea. The nerve-agent method is not as trackable, but still pretty obvious. Not that that proves Putin ordered it.

LINK.
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TGK
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« Reply #19 on: March 15, 2018, 11:45:36 am »

I once saw (not a regular watcher) an episode of the TV show Casualty.

You knew the guy was going to end up in hospital.

He's in the garage, he's standing on a chair.....oh hello!

He's surrounded by power tools and sharp implements. You know this isn't going to end well.

But he gets off the chair, walks out of the garage, across his newly cut lawn, past a potentially lethal lawn-mower which was still plugged in.

He walks into the kitchen and grabs a handful of nuts off the counter, which have been conveniently left in a ramekin in case anyone got peckish, presumably his morning exertions had made him amenable to a snack. He goes down clutching his throat, turns out he's allergic to nuts. He goes to Casualty, there's your movie.

This whole thing has that sort of quality about it.
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Red Herring
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« Reply #20 on: March 15, 2018, 11:56:34 am »

I once saw (not a regular watcher) an episode of the TV show Casualty.

You knew the guy was going to end up in hospital.

He's in the garage, he's standing on a chair.....oh hello!

He's surrounded by power tools and sharp implements. You know this isn't going to end well.

But he gets off the chair, walks out of the garage, across his newly cut lawn, past a potentially lethal lawn-mower which was still plugged in.

He walks into the kitchen and grabs a handful of nuts off the counter, which have been conveniently left in a ramekin in case anyone got peckish, presumably his morning exertions had made him amenable to a snack. He goes down clutching his throat, turns out he's allergic to nuts. He goes to Casualty, there's your movie.

This whole thing has that sort of quality about it.

 Cheesy

Did you ever find out who had left the nuts in the ramekin?

Red
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Weyland
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« Reply #21 on: March 15, 2018, 12:09:56 pm »

Ramefuckingkin?! Are you a hipster, TDK?

Dish. Bowl. Bag.

FFS.
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"Theresa May’s determination to pursue hard Brexit = stepping off a 10m diving board without checking there is any water in the pool."
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TGK
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« Reply #22 on: March 15, 2018, 12:11:06 pm »

Ramefuckingkin?! Are you a hipster, TDK?

Dish. Bowl. Bag.

FFS.

IT WAS A FUCKING RAMEKIN!

Blame 'Come Dine With Me'.

Harrumph.
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Mr Angry
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« Reply #23 on: March 15, 2018, 12:39:05 pm »

So this nerve agent was in a ramekin then?  Sounds a bit poncey to me and not a bit Russian.  Surely they would put it in a samovar?

Anyhoo, I'm pretty sure Ramekin turned into Darth Vader, who has better things to do than offing ex-spies.
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Red Herring
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« Reply #24 on: March 15, 2018, 12:45:39 pm »

I must say that I am dubious about pointing the finger at Russia - not because they are not capable, but because I doubt they would make it so obvious
As has been said above, the spooks are usually a bit more circumspect (Dr David Kelly for example). A 'mugging gone wrong', a road accident, or a simple disappearance are far simpler and the message would still be apparent to those who may be considered a 'potential problem'..and there would be no escalation to 'offences against International law'

One possibility not yet mentioned is that Russia simply subcontracted the job and the contractor decided on the method.....but there must be some reason for the unnecessarily complicated (and not so far successful) way they chose. I don't buy the 'sending a message' scenario, as has already been said, the message would have been clear regardless of method used.

I agree with Red with the feeling that we were being primed to accept the conclusion that it was Russia....but I really don't see who gains.

Struggling here. Some basic GWD axioms:

1: Red Herring is always right.

2: Ben Wedge is always wrong.

BEEP BEEP BEEP does not compute. *fatal error*.

I can only assume that Ben Wedge is not always wrong, but if so then axiom 1 cannot hold.

*disappears in a puff of logic*

Red
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