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LEAKED: The 4 ridiculous slides UK used to “convince” US that Russia was “guilty” of Novichok poisoning

Here are the slides used by UK government to make the case that Russia poisoned Sergei Skripal.

Alex Christoforou

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The UK Novichok poisoning hoax continues to unravel, even as European puppet states expel Russian diplomats, so as to provide some cover and legitimacy to the UK government’s false flag nerve agent attack.

Russia’s Kommersant newspaper has obtained the document used by the British government to convince EU and NATO allies to expel Russian diplomats over the Skripal poisoning hoax.

The slideshow PPT presentation called, the “Salisbury Incident” summarizes the UK’s version of events.

The Salisbury Incident PowerPoint presentation was reportedly sent out to 80 top-level foreign embassy officials in Moscow, including US Ambassador Jon Huntsman, who told Kommersant that he found Britain’s evidence “very convincing.”

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova called the slideshow a “massive manipulation of world public opinion” on the basis of “6 pictures.”

The document is far from “convincing”, and resembles something that a 12 year old science student would put together, summarizing the Theresa May government’s propaganda over the last two weeks, into powerpoint (bullet point) format.

Anyone that says these four slides are “convincing” is a complete moron. 

Sputnik News examines the facts behind the UK slide show PPT presentation.

We encourage our readers to take a look at these four slides and judge for yourselves as to how “convincing” the case is that Russia is behind the Novichok poisoning.

Faulty Timelines

The slideshow, which London has since confirmed is authentic, starts with a timeline, from Sergei and Yulia Skripal’s poisoning in Salisbury on March 4, to Prime Minister May’s declaration on March 12 that the substance used was the ‘Russian’ Novichok nerve agent and demand that Moscow provide an explanation.

Slide 1 of the Salisbury Incident presentation:

But a British High Court investigation into the incident was not so categorical, concluding Thursday that new blood samples needed to be taken from the Skripals to be sent for analysis by the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW). Court evidence from the Porton Down chemical weapons facility, cited by May in her attack on Russia, showed that scientists were not absolutely certain that the chemical the Skripals were exposed to was indeed Novichok. Nor could they rule out that the ex-spy and his daughter were poisoned by a “closely related agent.”

Court evidence aside, the PowerPoint presentation itself points out that Prime Minister May wrote to the OPCW asking for assistance on March 14, two days AFTER accusing Russia. The same day, London announced its ‘response’ to the poisoning, including the expulsion of 23 Russian diplomats, a break in high-level diplomatic contacts, and a ministerial and royal family boycott of the upcoming World Cup.

Finally, the slideshow confirms that the OPCW investigative team arrived in the UK a full week after May gave Moscow its 24-hour ‘ultimatum’ to Russia. On Tuesday, the organization confirmed that it has finished collecting samples from the scene of the crime, but stressed that its analysis would only be completed in two to three weeks’ time.

Contentious Claims

Slide 2 of the presentation, titled ‘A New Phase of Russia Aggression’, repeats London’s claim (debunked above) about Novichok being “positively identified by experts” at Porton Down. It goes on to say that Novichok is “developed only by Russia,” again, not true. Not only has the New York Times reported that the US has had access to the chemical since the late 1990s; on Sunday, the Russian Defense Ministry said it had evidence to show that A-234, the agent believed to have been used to posion Skripal, has also been created by the US. Russia itself stopped all research and development on the weapon after the collapse of the Soviet Union, and destroyed its stockpiles of the deadly agent.

Slide 2 of the Salisbury Incident presentation, titled ‘A New Phase of Russia Aggression’:

Ignoring these facts, the document goes on about the Skripal case being the “first offensive use of a nerve agent in Europe since the Second World War,” and concludes that Russia is “without doubt…responsible” for the crime. “There is no plausible alternative explanation,” it insists.

In other words, instead of offering evidence, waiting for the conclusion of an in-depth investigation, or taking up Russia’s proposal to conduct a full-scale joint investigation into the crime, London simply blames Russia. To Moscow’s consternation, the British government has even rejected Russia’s requests to provide it with investigative materials into the Skripal case, even though the attack also targeted Yulia Skripal, a Russian citizen.

Slide 3 summarizes the consequences of the poisoning attack, and offers a graphic showing what nerve agents do to the body; again, no evidence to suggest Russian involvement is offered.

Slide 3 of the Salisbury Incident presentation:

Blame It on the Bogeyman

Slide 4 of the government slideshow is the most audacious, adding eleven other egregious claims about “malign Russian activity” across the globe, without any evidence to back them up. Debunking these claims isn’t hard:

Slide 4 of the Salisbury Incident presentation, accusing Russia of a slew of crimes going back over a decade:

· The claim that Russia was behind the 2006 assassination of ex-spy Alexander Litvinenko has been contested not only by the Russian government, but by Litvinenko’s own father, who believes his son was killed by Alex Goldfarb, chairman of Boris Berezovsky’s Civil Liberties Fund.

· The claim about a Russian “invasion of Georgia” in 2008 is equally absurd. Not only did Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili start the conflict by using artillery against his own people, but the Russian response was limited to protecting the Abkhazian and Ossetian minorities and recognizing these regions’ independence, and didn’t include marching to Georgia and toppling the Saakashvili government (which collapsed on its own in 2013, after which Saakashvili fled the country over embezzlement charges).

· The assertion that Russia ‘occupied’ Crimea and ‘destabilized’ Ukraine in February 2014 is not only factually wrong (Crimea broke off from Ukraine in March 2014), but ignores that Crimeans voted overwhelmingly to join Russia after the Maidan coup in Kiev in a referendum organized by Crimean authorities. As for the ‘destabilization of Ukraine’ claim, it would probably be more appropriate to consider Kiev’s actions in the aftermath of the coup, including its decision to send troops into the Donbass to attack independence supporters, and its continuing rejection of constitutionally-guaranteed autonomy for its eastern regions. As for Russia, it is a guarantor, not a participant, in the conflict in eastern Ukraine.

· The claim that Russia was responsible for the July 2014 downing of Flight MH-17 ignores Russian investigators’ conclusion that the Boeing was shot down from territory controlled by the Ukrainian military.

· As for the slideshow’s claim about Russian meddling in the US presidential election in 2016, it would be interesting to hear President Trump’s take on the allegation, which implies that he owes his victory to Russian interference. Furthermore, a recently concluded comprehensive report by Congressional investigators found no evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia.

· For the remainder of the claims, from Russian DDoS and hacking attacks, to its alleged support for a coup attempt in Montenegro in 2016, it is sufficient to point out that they all follow a consistent pattern: Step 1) accusations are made, with no evidence provided, followed by a political, media and diplomatic scandal. Step 2) the scandal blows over, the public forgets, and those making the accusations are never reprimanded.
Fake Claims, Real Consequences

As this article has pointed out, the Salisbury Incident document is not only light on facts, but contains absolutely no hard evidence about any Russian complicity in the crime against the Skripals. Instead, it’s limited to guesswork and easily disprovable stereotypes. Unfortunately, facts or not, the document has played its part in the decision of nearly 30 countries to expel over 100 Russian diplomats.

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Macron cuts ski holiday short, vowing crack down on Yellow Vests (Video)

The Duran Quick Take: Episode 109.

Alex Christoforou

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The Duran’s Alex Christoforou and Editor-in-Chief Alexander Mercouris discuss the 18th consecutive week of Yellow Vests protests in Paris. Following last weeks lower participation, Saturday’s Yellow Vests in Paris gathered larger crowds, with various outbreaks of violence and rioting that has been blamed on extreme elements, who French authorities claim have infiltrated the movement.

“Act XVIII” of the protests has shown that the Yellow Vests have not given up. France’s Champs-Élysées boulevard was where most of the violence occurred, with the street being left in a pile of broken glass and flames.

One day after Paris was set ablaze, French President Emmanuel Macron cut his ski holiday short, returning to Paris and vowing to take “strong decisions” to prevent more violence.

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Via Zerohedge


Paris awoke on Sunday to smouldering fires, broken windows and looted stores following the 18th consecutive Saturday of Yellow Vest protests.

Around 200 people were arrested according to BFM TV, while about 80 shops near the iconic Champs Elysees had been damaged and/or looted according to AFP, citing Champs Elysees committee president Jean-Noel Reinhardt.

The 373-year-old Saint Sulpice Roman Catholic church was set on fire while people were inside, however nobody was injured. The cause of the fire remains unknown.

The riots were so severe that French President Emmanuel Macron cut short a vacation at the La Mongie ski resort in the Hautes-Pyrénées following a three-day tour of East Africa which took him to Djibouti, Ethiopia and Kenya.

Macron skied on Friday, telling La Depeche du Midi “I’m going to spend two-three days here to relax, to find landscapes and friendly faces,” adding “I’m happy to see the Pyrenees like that, radiant, although I know it was more difficult at Christmas” referring to the lack of snow in December.

In response to Saturday’s violence, Macron said over Twitter that “strong decisions” were coming to prevent more violence.

Macron said some individuals — dubbed “black blocs” by French police forces — were taking advantage of the protests by the Yellow Vest grassroots movement to “damage the Republic, to break, to destroy.” Prime Minister Edouard Philippe said on Twitter that those who excused or encouraged such violence were complicit in it. –Bloomberg

The French President has family ties in the Hautes-Pyrénées, including Bagnères de Bigorre where his grandmother lived. He is a regular visitor to the region.

Emmanuel Macron (2ndL), head of the political movement In Marche! (Onwards!) And candidate for the 2017 presidential election, and his wife Brigitte Trogneux (L) have lunch April 12, 2017 (Reuters)

 

 

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Vesti calls out Pompeo on lying about Russia invading Ukraine [Video]

Secretary Pompeo displayed either stunning ignorance or a mass-attack of propaganda about what must be the most invisible war in history.

Seraphim Hanisch

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After the 2014 Maidan revolution and the subsequent secessions of Lugansk and Donetsk in Ukraine, and after the rejoining of Crimea with its original nation of Russia, the Western media went on a campaign to prove the Russia is (/ was / was about to / had already / might / was thinking about / was planning to … etc.) invade Ukraine. For the next year or so, about every two weeks, internet news sources like Yahoo! News showed viewers pictures of tanks, box trucks and convoys to “prove” that the invasion was underway (or any of the other statuses confirming the possibilities above stated.) This information was doubtless provided to US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo.

Apparently, Secretary Pompeo believed this ruse, or is being paid to believe this ruse because in a speech recently, he talked about it as fact:

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo called Russia’s annexation of Crimea and aggression in eastern Ukraine an attempt to gain access to Ukraine’s oil and gas reserves.

He stated this at IHS Markit’s CERAWeek conference in Houston, the USA, Reuters reports.

Pompeo urged the oil industry to work with the Trump administration to promote U.S. foreign policy interests, especially in Asia and in Europe, and to punish what he called “bad actors” on the world stage.

The United States has imposed harsh sanctions in the past several months on two major world oil producers, Venezuela and Iran.

Pompeo said the U.S. oil-and-gas export boom had given the United States the ability to meet energy demand once satisfied by its geopolitical rivals.

“We don’t want our European allies hooked on Russian gas through the Nord Stream 2 project, any more than we ourselves want to be dependent on Venezuelan oil supplies,” Pompeo said, referring to a natural gas pipeline expansion from Russia to Central Europe.

Pompeo called Russia’s invasion of Ukraine an attempt to gain access to the country’s oil and gas reserves.

Although the state-run news agency Vesti News often comes under criticism for rather reckless, or at least, extremely sarcastic propaganda at times, here they rightly nailed Mr. Pompeo’s lies to the wall and billboarded it on their program:

The news anchors even made a wisecrack about one of the political figures, Konstantin Zatulin saying as a joke that Russia plans to invade the United States to get its oil. They further noted that Secretary Pompeo is uneducated about the region and situation, but they offered him the chance to come to Russia and learn the correct information about what is going on.

To wit, Russia has not invaded Ukraine at all. There is no evidence to support such a claim, while there IS evidence to show that the West is actively interfering with Russia through the use of Ukraine as a proxyWhile this runs counter to the American narrative, it is simply the truth. Ukraine appears to be the victim of its own ambitions at this point, for while the US tantalizes the leadership of the country and even interferes with the Orthodox Church in the region, the country lurches towards a presidential election with three very poor candidates, most notably the one who is president there now, Petro Poroshenko.

However, the oil and gas side of the anti-Russian propaganda operation by the US is significant. The US wishes for Europe to buy gas from American suppliers, even though this is woefully inconvenient and expensive when Russia is literally at Europe’s doorstep with easy supplies. However, the Cold War Party in the United States, which still has a significant hold on US policy making categorizes the sale of Russia gas to powers like NATO ally Germany as a “threat” to European security.

It is interesting that Angela Merkel herself does not hold this line of thinking. It is also interesting and worthy of note, that this is not the only NATO member that is dealing more and more with Russia in terms of business. It underscores the loss of purpose that the North Atlantic Treaty Organization suffers now since there is no Soviet Union to fight.

However, the US remains undaunted. If there is no enemy to fight, the Americans feel that they must create one, and Russia has been the main scapegoat for American power ambitions. More than ever now, this tactic appears to be the one in use for determining the US stance towards other powers in the world.

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Ariel Cohen explains Washington’s latest foreign policy strategy [Video]

Excellent interview Ariel Cohen and Vladimir Solovyov reveals the forces at work in and behind American foreign policy.

Seraphim Hanisch

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While the American people and press are pretty much complicit in reassuring the masses that America is the only “right” superpower on earth, and that Russia and China represent “enemy threats” for doing nothing more than existing and being successfully competitive in world markets, Russia Channel One got a stunner of a video interview with Ariel Cohen.

Who is Ariel Cohen? Wikipedia offers this information about him:

Ariel Cohen (born April 3, 1959 in Crimea in YaltaUSSR) is a political scientist focusing on political risk, international security and energy policy, and the rule of law.[1] Cohen currently serves as the Director of The Center for Energy, Natural Resources and Geopolitics (CENRG) at the Institute for Analysis of Global Security (IAGS). CENRG focuses on the nexus between energy, geopolitics and security, and natural resources and growth. He is also a nonresident senior fellow at the Atlantic Council, within the Global Energy Center and the Dinu Patriciu Eurasia Center.[2] Until July 2014, Dr. Cohen was a senior research fellow at the Heritage Foundation in Washington, D.C. He specializes in Russia/Eurasia, Eastern Europe, and the Middle East.

Cohen has testified before committees of the U.S. Congress, including the Senate and House Foreign Relations Committees, the House Armed Services Committee, the House Judiciary Committee and the Helsinki Commission.[4] He also served as a Policy Adviser with the National Institute for Public Policy’s Center for Deterrence Analysis.[5] In addition, Cohen has consulted for USAID, the World Bank and the Pentagon.[6][7]

Cohen is a frequent writer and commentator in the American and international media. He has appeared on CNN, NBC, CBS, FOX, C-SPAN, BBC-TV and Al Jazeera English, as well as Russian and Ukrainian national TV networks. He was a commentator on a Voice of America weekly radio and TV show for eight years. Currently, he is a Contributing Editor to the National Interest and a blogger for Voice of America. He has written guest columns for the New York TimesInternational Herald TribuneChristian Science Monitor, the Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Times, EurasiaNet, Valdai Discussion Club,[8] and National Review Online. In Europe, Cohen’s analyses have appeared in Kommersant, Izvestiya, Hurriyet, the popular Russian website Ezhenedelny Zhurnal, and many others.[9][10]

Mr. Cohen came on Russian TV for a lengthy interview running about 17 minutes. This interview, shown in full below, is extremely instructive in illustrating the nature of the American foreign policy directives such as they are at this time.

We have seen evidence of this in recent statements by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo regarding Russia’s “invasion” of Ukraine, and an honestly unabashed bit of fear mongering about China’s company Huawei and its forthcoming 5G networks, which we will investigate in more detail in another piece. Both bits of rhetoric reflect a re-polished narrative that, paraphrased, says to the other world powers,

Either you do as we tell you, or you are our enemy. You are not even permitted to out-compete with us in business, let alone foreign relations. The world is ours and if you try to step out of place, you will be dealt with as an enemy power.

This is probably justified paranoia, because it is losing its place. Where the United Stated used to stand for opposition against tyranny in the world, it now acts as the tyrant, and even as a bully. Russia and China’s reaction might be seen as ignoring the bully and his bluster and just going about doing their own thing. It isn’t a fight, but it is treating the bully with contempt, as bullies indeed deserve.

Ariel Cohen rightly points out that there is a great deal of political inertia in the matter of allowing Russia and China to just do their own thing. The US appears to be acting paranoid about losing its place. His explanations appear very sound and very reasonable and factual. Far from some of the snark Vesti is often infamous for, this interview is so clear it is tragic that most Americans will never see it.

The tragedy for the US leadership that buys this strategy is that they appear to be blinded so much by their own passion that they cannot break free of it to save themselves.

This is not the first time that such events have happened to an empire. It happened in Rome; it happened for England; and it happened for the shorter-lived empires of Nazi Germany and ISIS. It happens every time that someone in power becomes afraid to lose it, and when the forces that propelled that rise to power no longer are present. The US is a superpower without a reason to be a superpower.

That can be very dangerous.

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