The arguments presented by London as evidence of Russia’s involvement in the case of ex-colonel GRU Sergey Skripal are illogical and unreliable. It is “fanning the flames of a new cold war”, which is beneficial only to the military-industrial complex and the special services of Great Britain, says former United Kingdom Ambassador to Uzbekistan Craig Murray.
Answering a question about who benefits from the Skripal case, the ex-diplomat drew attention to the fact that it contributes to the “upping” the Cold War rhetoric.
It adds fuel to the new Cold War. The armaments industry are the primary people who benefit. This kind of thing is very good for defense budgets. It is very good news for the spies and security services. Here in the UK the industry employs over 100,000 people. In a country of 60 million, this is a strong and very highly paid interest group. All of these people are seeing a major ramping up of their budgets. When the people feeding-in the intelligence are the same people who are benefiting financially from that story, then you have to worry. And particularly for right-wing politicians this is a cheap way of getting support.
adds Murray, drawing attention to the ongoing increase in the needs of the British special services and the armaments industry.
I find it remarkable that the very day this happened the British government was announcing that it was the Russian state that was behind this. They couldn’t possibly have had time to analyze any of the evidence. It is as though this is being used as a trigger to put prearranged anti-Russian measures into place and to “up” the Cold War rhetoric. You can’t help get the feeling that they are rather pleased this has happened and were even expecting it to happen.
In his opinion, the term “very likely”, which appears in London’s statements about Russia’s guilt, is in fact “a recognition of the lack of evidence.”
The former diplomat also pointed to obvious inconsistencies in the investigation’s development.
Until now, the official position of the British government and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons was that there was doubt as to whether they actually produced any of these. As of now, they haven’t been put on the banned list, precisely because the scientific community has doubted their existence. So the British government’s ability on day-one to identify this was quite remarkable. In 2016, the Iranians succeeded in producing several Novichok weapons and they reported their results to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons. Their motivation was that they were concerned that they themselves might be attacked by chemical weapons, possibly from Israel. There are at least a couple dozen countries who have the technical capability to create this type of nerve agent.
He recalled the statement of London that Skripal was poisoned with a substance that is ten times stronger than VX in its impact. “Thankfully, so far, nobody has been killed. Why isn’t this deadly agent more effective? Why is it that the doctor who administered first aid to Yulia Skripal was completely unaffected, even though he had extensive physical contact with her?” the former ambassador asks.
He stated that Russia had “no reason to risk its reputation in the international community,” punishing the defector. “If people are going to swap spies and then kill them, there won’t be any spy swaps in the future.” Murray explained.