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For more than a week, the British public has had the spectacle of the UK legislature and Press (often collectively referred to as the “Westminster Bubble”) baying like a mob outside the door of a suspected paedophile.

The cause of this effect is the poisoning of an expat russian and his daughter, in Salisbury, the circumstances of which are far from clear.

There are a lot of reasons to be circumspect about this, so called, russian chemical attack on British soil.

The first one is the judgement of the mob’s leader, PM Theresa May.  She has no record of sound judgement in her role as Prime Minister. 

Her first appointment of her Cabinet was Boris Johnson as Foreign Secretary.  A selection that could kindly be described as risible.  He indicated no suitability for the role before his appointment nor has  since.  Quite the opposite. 
It was at that decision you knew all was hopeless.  Brexit was going to be hopeless.  Everything she was going to be involved in was hopeless. 

The poorest of her decisions, so far, was to call a General Election when it was not necessary and was in violation of the intent of the Fixed Term Parliaments Act.  It took up time that would have been well spent on working out our withdrawl from the E.U.
So witless was she that she called the election before she had manifesto worked out.

This bizarre vanity cost her her parliamentary majority, rendering her Govt impotent.

The most recent of her Cabinet appointments has been Gavin Williamson as Defence Secretary.  Again, he’d indicated no suitablitiy before or since. 

These three, PM May, F.Sec Johnson, Def. Sec. Williamson, are the lead response to the poisoning in Salisbury and provide a richness of embarassment every time they speak.

Another reason for circumspection is nomenclature.   It’s from the propaganda dictionary.
The Westminster Bubble call the poisoning “a chemical weapons attack”.   I doubt Macbeth’s weird sisters, sat around their cauldron, would appreciate this.
“Chemical weapon attack” suggests a mass attack without discrimination of who is affected.  e.g. WWI gas attack.
Cooking something up in a lab (or cauldron) that is then administered to a particular individual or two, is a “poisoning”.

In the past week, some thug has received a lengthy jail sentence for throwing acid over moped riders in the course of stealing their mopeds.  The acid involved, sulphuric acid , is manufactured in bulk as battery acid.
No one describes his actions as involving a chemical weapon, though that’s what he used it as.

Then there’s the poison itself.   Supposedly  “ ....part of a group of nerve agents known as Novichok.”
They are derived from organophosphates  e.g. insecticides.
The name was given to it by a russian chemist, Vil Mirzanyanov, who worked on it in Uzbekistan in the  1980’s.   The USA worked with the Uzbeks to decommission the research facility following the break up of the Soviet Union.
He served time in Russia for whistleblowing and now lives in the USA.  He published his memoirs, including the recipe for Novichok, in 2007.

The Scientific Advisory Board (SAB)  for the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW)  was never able to decide if Novichok could actually be made.  Lacking evidence,  the SAB didn’t designate Novichoks, or their precursors, as scheduled chemicals under the Chemical Weapons Convention.

All of which is why they’re very thin on identifying information at Porton Down.  It’s not on the OPCW’s list.  Hence it’s reckless to describe the Salisbury poison as of “military grade”.

N.B.  In 2016,  Iranian chemists described their synthesis of Novichok agents and where to find the raw materials.   (see here and here)

So, places you might be able to lay your rubber gloved hands on Novichok are, Russia (according to Theresa May), Uzbekistan and USA (if they cheated on the decommissioning), Iran  ....... and anywhere else in the world where you may find an enthusiastic chemist with a home lab constructed out of stuff bought on Ebay.  I kid you not on the latter, you can get all sorts of hi tech kit second hand, originating from hospitals and labs etc.
In a distant past, I have known of such enthusiasts.

Traditionally, our thinking on murder is that the perpetrator needs motive, means and opportunity.  The last two are not in the public domain.  At present, the investigating force seems clueless as to how and when the poison was administered, leave alone by whom.

“Motive” is wide open to speculation. 

PM May, tip toeing around we don’t know what, describes the poison as  “of a type developed by Russia”  and then proposes the culpability of Russia in the crime.  This is the view from “the Bubble”, that Russia blatantly commits an outrage to demonstrate its invulnerability.
I don’t know how this passes for rational thought.

It’s suggested that it was a revenge assassination of a traitor.  As the traitor was the subject of a prisoner swap, this is improbable.  It would mean the end of prisoner swaps if that was known to be the fate of the swapped.  And every country is going to find it convenient to swap prisoners sometime.

A credible account is to be found here   where a retired, french, security flic tells of russian super gangsters and how they hate Putin for putting them into exile and out of business in Russia.  When they find it expedient to bump someone off, they like to do it in a way which, they think, will cause embarassment to Putin.
The vid is from 2016.  His description is a template for what happened in Salisbury.

The Internet abounds with theories more credible than the allegation of the UK Govt.

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