ISF Logo   IS Forum
Forum Index Register Members List Events Mark Forums Read Help

Go Back   International Skeptics Forum » General Topics » Social Issues & Current Events
 


Welcome to the International Skeptics Forum, where we discuss skepticism, critical thinking, the paranormal and science in a friendly but lively way. You are currently viewing the forum as a guest, which means you are missing out on discussing matters that are of interest to you. Please consider registering so you can gain full use of the forum features and interact with other Members. Registration is simple, fast and free! Click here to register today.
Tags !MOD BOX WARNING!

Reply
Old 16th March 2018, 12:09 PM   #361
Elagabalus
Master Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 2,851
Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop View Post
Consensus of opinion in the pub is that we shouldn't trust a word the government tell us and the BBC are just Tory propaganda.

They seem to think we should be trusting Putin and Russia Today as telling the truth not the Paedo loving Tories and BBC.

Which to my mind is a worrying trend.
Yes, there seems to be a strange Ulta-Right/Ultra-Left overlap IMO. "We should not make hasty conclusions, but one thing we can safely conclude, right from the start, is that Russia is not involved" is a meme I'm seeing on other forums.


Oh, and if you DO think Russia is involved, you're an establishment shill.


Most perplexing.
Elagabalus is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 16th March 2018, 12:17 PM   #362
Babbylonian
Penultimate Amazing
 
Babbylonian's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 11,070
Originally Posted by Elagabalus View Post
Yes, there seems to be a strange Ulta-Right/Ultra-Left overlap IMO. "We should not make hasty conclusions, but one thing we can safely conclude, right from the start, is that Russia is not involved" is a meme I'm seeing on other forums.


Oh, and if you DO think Russia is involved, you're an establishment shill.


Most perplexing.
It's not that perplexing. In this age of instant mass communication, propaganda is more effective than ever. It doesn't work on everyone, of course, but it can sow doubt among the gullible and the paranoid. That doubt spreads from the margins and can then be used by the more manipulative among us as if it is actual evidence.
Babbylonian is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 16th March 2018, 12:17 PM   #363
Hellbound
Merchant of Doom
 
Hellbound's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Not in Hell, but I can see it from here on a clear day...
Posts: 12,526
Makes no sense, either.

If someone is poisoned, and the poison is identified as only being accessible to a pharmacist, which the victim's ex-husband is, then guess who my first suspect is?

Even if he claims to have gotten rid of it years ago, or that someone might have taken it out of his trash, or that she might've kept a bottle when they got divorced, it still makes no sense for me to ignore him. He's still the prime suspect.
Hellbound is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 16th March 2018, 12:19 PM   #364
Elagabalus
Master Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 2,851
Originally Posted by MaGZ View Post
...The Jews still dream of ruling Russia.
What about the Israelis?
Elagabalus is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 16th March 2018, 12:28 PM   #365
Elagabalus
Master Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 2,851
Originally Posted by Hellbound View Post
Makes no sense, either.

If someone is poisoned, and the poison is identified as only being accessible to a pharmacist, which the victim's ex-husband is, then guess who my first suspect is?

Even if he claims to have gotten rid of it years ago, or that someone might have taken it out of his trash, or that she might've kept a bottle when they got divorced, it still makes no sense for me to ignore him. He's still the prime suspect.

I posted this on another site but it appears that most Spies killed in Britain lists don't go back far enough.

http://www.businessinsider.com/list-...18-3?r=UK&IR=T

They forgot one.

Georgi Markov

http://foreignpolicy.com/2018/03/09/...ons-by-poison/

And it's just as embarrassingly sloppy as some of the others.
Elagabalus is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 16th March 2018, 12:31 PM   #366
Hellbound
Merchant of Doom
 
Hellbound's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Not in Hell, but I can see it from here on a clear day...
Posts: 12,526
Originally Posted by Elagabalus View Post
I posted this on another site but it appears that most Spies killed in Britain lists don't go back far enough.

http://www.businessinsider.com/list-...18-3?r=UK&IR=T

They forgot one.

Georgi Markov

http://foreignpolicy.com/2018/03/09/...ons-by-poison/

And it's just as embarrassingly sloppy as some of the others.
Yep.

When you consider this is that pharmacist's fifth or sixth wife to die under suspicious circumstances, ignoring him as a suspect would be downright criminal in itself.
Hellbound is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 16th March 2018, 01:05 PM   #367
Planigale
Master Poster
 
Planigale's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 2,790
Originally Posted by Henri McPhee View Post
I do have my doubts, and very little confidence, in that new sixth form college kid defence minister proposing anthrax vaccines for the soldiers. There is no real proof yet either that Putin wants to restore the old Soviet administrations, as this Toryboy seems to think. These doctor-like people have never come up with an explanation for Gulf war syndrome, which is real, and very unfair on the soldiers and their families affected, both in Britain and America:

https://www.naturodoc.com/library/pu...ax_vaccine.htm
So on a skeptic site you cite as an expert someone with a doctorate in naturopathy. Presumably one can assume that he is un-doctor-like!
Planigale is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 16th March 2018, 01:06 PM   #368
Checkmite
Skepticifimisticalationist
 
Checkmite's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Gulf Coast
Posts: 22,206
Originally Posted by mifune View Post
It is a stretch. Because there is absolutely no evidence that this happened.

Nerve agents are not simple to handle or store. They are extremely dangerous and this particular one is extremely persistent. Very few states (let alone non state actors) would even have the infrastructure and training to handle this stuff without *********** it up.
Apparently not only would these non-Russian total foreigners have needed to develop (or steal from old stockpile), handle, and transport this agent, but they would've had to smuggle it back into Russia to use it:

Quote:
LONDON (Reuters) - The military-grade nerve toxin that poisoned former Russian agent Sergei Skripal was planted in his daughter’s suitcase before she left Moscow, The Telegraph newspaper reported, citing unidentified sources.

British investigators are working on the theory that the toxin was impregnated in an item of clothing or cosmetics or in a gift that was opened in Skripal’s house in Salisbury, the Telegraph said, citing the unidentified sources.
__________________
"¿WHAT KIND OF BIRD?
¿A PARANORMAL BIRD?"
--- Carlos S., 2002
Checkmite is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 16th March 2018, 01:08 PM   #369
Planigale
Master Poster
 
Planigale's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 2,790
Originally Posted by Henri McPhee View Post
Putin isn't responsible for every Russian that gets murdered.
Yes he is.

That is command responsibility. He may not be to blame, but he is ultimately responsible for the safety of the Russian people.
Planigale is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 16th March 2018, 01:16 PM   #370
Childlike Empress
Ewige Blumenkraft
 
Childlike Empress's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Ivory Tower
Posts: 15,840
Originally Posted by Childlike Empress View Post
The whistleblower has written a book on his experiences which includes the formulas, and he has commented on this very case that only Russia knew how to make it ... and people who read his book. He literally said that.

I looked it up, it's as I suspected in Nafeez Ahmed's must-read article with the link that is butchered by the autocensor because it contains the "BS" word. Please replace the eight stars with that word and go read the complete article:

https://medium.com/insurge-intellige...*-a69b4ee484ce

Originally Posted by Nafeez Ahmed
[...] Agence France Presse, for instance, declared in an opening paragraph to an interview with [the whistleblower/defector who brought "Novichok" to public attention in the early 90s, Vil] Mirzayanov, “The Russian chemist who first revealed the existence of ‘Novichok’ nerve agents says only the Russians can be behind the weapon’s use in Britain against a former spy and his daughter.” And yet, the AFP article went on to report:
“The only other possibility, he said, would be that someone used the formulas in his book to make such a weapon.”
Mirzayanov’s book, published in 2008, contains the formulas he alleges can be used to create Novichoks. In 1995, he explained that “the chemical components or precursors” of Novichok are “ordinary organophosphates that can be made at commercial chemical companies that manufacture such products as fertilizers and pesticides.”

If his claims are remotely accurate, then that means Novichoks can actually be manufactured by anyone who reads Mirzayanov’s book with access to a decent laboratory. Which means that Theresa May’s claim that Novichoks lead only to Russia is little more than a deception. [...]
Childlike Empress is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 16th March 2018, 01:21 PM   #371
The Great Zaganza
Illuminator
 
The Great Zaganza's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2016
Posts: 4,498
What makes it so hard not to think the worst of Putin is the amount of known Russian troll campaigns to make up conspiracy stories exactly like more or less plausible alternative scenarios from self-styled fair and balanced commentators.
It is not unreasonable to consider everything pushed by Russian trolls as false until there is independent evidence.
__________________
Opinion is divided on the subject. All the others say it is; I say it isn’t.
The Great Zaganza is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 16th March 2018, 01:23 PM   #372
Childlike Empress
Ewige Blumenkraft
 
Childlike Empress's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Ivory Tower
Posts: 15,840
And from b's second last article:

Originally Posted by Moon of Alabama
[...] Vil Mirzanyanov promoted his book in a 2009 video. Shortly after he published his book he blogged an explanation why he included formulas in it:
While I was writing my book “State Secrets: An Insider’s Chronicle of the Russian Chemical Weapons Program”, some people from Washington persistently advised me not to include the formulas of the chemical agents of the Novichok series in my book.
...
I asked why it would be a bad idea to publish this information, since it would be for the safety of all people. Then the governments would work to have those chemical agents and their precursors included into the Control List. They responded, “Terrorists could use them for their criminal actions.” This kind of reasoning is used all the time now to scare people and prevent any discussion. We are already used to ignoring a lot of real problems thanks to that.
Mirzanyanov further points out that experienced personal in well equipped laboratories would be able to use his formulas. State actors have such laboratories, like the British Porton Down, but terrorists do not have such capabilities.

Mirzanyanov urged to included the substances he described into the OPCW list of controlled material. But the OPCW, as seen above, rejected that. Neither its scientific board nor the head of the Porton Down detection laboratory were convinced that these substances or the Soviet program Mirzanyanov described existed at all. [...]

Given the additional information in these two and other articles, it is even of question how much of a charlatan this guy is. Not in question is that May and BoJo the clown and others are talking plain BS.
Childlike Empress is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 16th March 2018, 02:35 PM   #373
Childlike Empress
Ewige Blumenkraft
 
Childlike Empress's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Ivory Tower
Posts: 15,840
I just clicked on the link to the 2009 book presentation video by Mirzanyanov, the guy from whom we know about this Soviet program. In the first 15 seconds, he manages to deny the existence of biological weapons. I stared for another couple of seconds at him, his bow-tie and the poster hanging from his lamp before I closed the thing. If someone lasts longer, give us a review.

YouTube Video This video is not hosted by the ISF. The ISF can not be held responsible for the suitability or legality of this material. By clicking the link below you agree to view content from an external website.
I AGREE
Childlike Empress is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 16th March 2018, 03:07 PM   #374
Aber
Graduate Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 1,326
Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
Though it was researched and tested in Uzbekistan. Several years passed between Uzbekistan gaining independence and that facility being dismantled. That Novichok might have got into the hands of non-Russians is far from a stretch.
Tested yes; but no other research. It was developed and manufactured in Russia. The staff on the site in Uzbekistan were Russian, not local and the site was closed down after the break-up of the Soviet Union.

All the above is as I understand it, subject to other evidence turning up. Key point is that it is unlikely that any product was left behind, and even if it were it will have decayed over time. May's statement about a clandestine Russian chemical weapons programme (and lack of comment about failure to destroy Soviet stocks) imply that they believe it is of recent manufacture.

Therefore a non-Russian source implies someone has set up a new clandestine manufacturing site, requiring detailed knowledge of Novichok and the manufacturing, storage and deployment processes. Technically not impossible but very very unlikely.
Aber is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th March 2018, 02:54 AM   #375
Darat
Lackey
Administrator
 
Darat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: South East, UK
Posts: 82,953
Originally Posted by Childlike Empress View Post
Well, any would be a step in the right direction, preferably before laying blame. So if you have a time capsule, we can go back to the 4th and see if a less ridiculous story develops.

b has put out another essential piece on the issue, going a bit into the timing as well.

I agree with him that the most likely motive has something to do with Skripal's connection to Steele and the "piss dossier" on Trump. Depending on what you think about the credibility of that work, the motive could lay on "both sides" to make him stop using his insider knowledge. As I happen to understand that it is total rubbish, I think the old guy tried to benefit financially by blackmailing Steele and gang threatening to go public.

Bad idea, they took him out with something much more profane and just made sure that some extravagant "samples" were delivered to Porton Down - maybe from own stock - to use the opportunity to start another "blame Putin" hysteria.
That avoids answering my question.
__________________
I wish I knew how to quit you
Darat is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th March 2018, 03:08 AM   #376
jimbob
Uncritical "thinker"
 
jimbob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: UK
Posts: 18,722
The "in the pipeline" blogpost that I linked to earlier is good at explaing why Russia os the prime suspect, even though the general formula might be known.

http://blogs.sciencemag.org/pipeline...lies-and-liars

On top of that, if Russia was sincere, they'd admit the strength of the publicly known circumstantial evidence and offer explanations as well as cooperating to remove WMDs from private individuals.

Instead they have gone down the "how very dare you besmirch our reputation" route, which rings particularly hollow given how much evidence of their involvement in other poisonings.
__________________
OECD healthcare spending
Expenditure on healthcare
http://www.oecd.org/els/health-systems/health-data.htm
link is 2015 data (2013 Data below):
UK 8.5% of GDP of which 83.3% is public expenditure - 7.1% of GDP is public spending
US 16.4% of GDP of which 48.2% is public expenditure - 7.9% of GDP is public spending
jimbob is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th March 2018, 03:12 AM   #377
Henri McPhee
Master Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 2,919
Most of these murders get solved by routine police work, not by brilliant detection, or jumping to conclusions and assumptions. Informants and whistleblowers would be useful in a case like this. To me, which I admit is a gut feeling or hunch, it seems to be Jewish cleverness, or Turkish genocide, in order to discredit Putin, or possibly something to do with that Christopher Steele business in America as Childlike Express has mentioned on this forum. I agree that many of these Russian oligarchs in London are bad characters, and that Putin has been mixed up with them in the past, but that's not conclusive evidence of anything. I think it's outside the understanding of PC Plods, or the average Joe in America, or the average juror in Britain.
Henri McPhee is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th March 2018, 03:14 AM   #378
Nessie
Penultimate Amazing
 
Nessie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 11,031
The UK government is embarrassed by the number of Russians dying on UK soil in suspicious circumstances. Many of them were opponents of the existing Russian hierarchy in one way or another. That hierarchy is not just Putin, it is other powerful Russians, from others in government to the oligarchs.

The tactic of Russians dying in suspect circumstances in the UK is a Russian one by those in power to deter those who would stand up to them. They are trying to suppress opposition to them in Russia.

I think the UK government response tactic is to try and deter that hierarchy by going after the most powerful, Putin and the government, in the hope they them act to stop the other Russians from their actions.
__________________
Audiophile/biker/sceptic
Nessie is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th March 2018, 04:17 AM   #379
Planigale
Master Poster
 
Planigale's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 2,790
Another Russian murdered in England.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-43438615
Quote:
"UK police have begun to contact a number of Russian exiles to discuss their safety as they investigate the murder of businessman Nikolai Glushkov.
The 68-year-old's body was discovered at his south-London home on 12 March. A post-mortem examination has found he died from "compression to the neck".
The UK granted Mr Glushkov political asylum in 2010 after he fled Moscow.
The BBC has been told police and the security services have reassessed their view that other exiles are at low risk."
Planigale is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th March 2018, 05:32 AM   #380
David RP
Scholar
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 84
CE and others have pointed at Vil Mirzayanov' s book as a source for the formula to produce Novichok.

Mirzayanov states here that it takes a whole lot more than a vist to a bookshop


"The Russian chemist who revealed the existence of the novichok family of chemical agents to the world has dismissed the notion that a non-state actor could be behind the poisoning of former spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter in Salisbury, England, earlier this month"


https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/...e_iOSApp_Other
David RP is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th March 2018, 06:37 AM   #381
ddt
Mafia Penguin
 
ddt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 19,576
Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
Though it was researched and tested in Uzbekistan. Several years passed between Uzbekistan gaining independence and that facility being dismantled. That Novichok might have got into the hands of non-Russians is far from a stretch.
Only tested in Uzbekistan. It was developed in Shikhany in Russia, in a facility set-up there in 1928 with the aid of chemists of the Reichswehr (to add a historical note).
__________________
"I think it is very beautiful for the poor to accept their lot, to share it with the passion of Christ. I think the world is being much helped by the suffering of the poor people." - "Saint" Teresa, the lying thieving Albanian dwarf

"I think accuracy is important" - Vixen
ddt is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th March 2018, 06:38 AM   #382
jimbob
Uncritical "thinker"
 
jimbob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: UK
Posts: 18,722
Originally Posted by David RP View Post
CE and others have pointed at Vil Mirzayanov' s book as a source for the formula to produce Novichok.

Mirzayanov states here that it takes a whole lot more than a vist to a bookshop


"The Russian chemist who revealed the existence of the novichok family of chemical agents to the world has dismissed the notion that a non-state actor could be behind the poisoning of former spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter in Salisbury, England, earlier this month"


https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/...e_iOSApp_Other
Indeed, and other professional chemists have made the same point.


And a related point from the in the pipeline blogpost that I linked to earlier
Quote:
Stuart Cantrill’s Twitter feed this morning put me on to this exchange about the identification of the compound. Apparently there are a number of people saying that there’s no way that this compound could have been identified without a reference sample, there’s no proof that these are associated with Russian chemical warfare research, etc. Needless to say, I side with Clyde Davies in that Twitter exchange linked above. The evidence is extremely strong that this was a Russian operation, and the often-flippant response of the Russian authorities to the entire case does nothing to dispel that.

I have already had comments on the earlier post throwing doubt and uncertainly about this case (and the earlier Litvinenko assassination, even). More of these may accrue to this post as well. Some of these may in fact be honest doubts from extremely skeptical onlookers – but others are surely lies. Smiling, straight-into-the-camera-lens lies.
__________________
OECD healthcare spending
Expenditure on healthcare
http://www.oecd.org/els/health-systems/health-data.htm
link is 2015 data (2013 Data below):
UK 8.5% of GDP of which 83.3% is public expenditure - 7.1% of GDP is public spending
US 16.4% of GDP of which 48.2% is public expenditure - 7.9% of GDP is public spending
jimbob is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th March 2018, 06:41 AM   #383
ddt
Mafia Penguin
 
ddt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 19,576
Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop View Post
On the moors near Barnard Castle is a site that in WW2 was a POW camp. After the war it was used to store all the German Chemical Weapons that were rounded up. This included Nerve gas.
It wasn't actually finally cleared and disposed of until just a few years ago. All the buildings and sheds etc were demolished and shipped away foe careful disposal in sealed containers by men in Hazmat suits.

The site is still off limits with signs warning of the hazard. It won't be completely safe for a long time yet.
That would have been Sarin and Tabun then. Likewise, the Belgian and French soil is still replete with mustard gas shells from WW1. The mustard gas is still fine after a century, but the shells corrode...
__________________
"I think it is very beautiful for the poor to accept their lot, to share it with the passion of Christ. I think the world is being much helped by the suffering of the poor people." - "Saint" Teresa, the lying thieving Albanian dwarf

"I think accuracy is important" - Vixen
ddt is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th March 2018, 06:42 AM   #384
ddt
Mafia Penguin
 
ddt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 19,576
Originally Posted by Henri McPhee View Post
I do have my doubts, and very little confidence, in that new sixth form college kid defence minister proposing anthrax vaccines for the soldiers. There is no real proof yet either that Putin wants to restore the old Soviet administrations, as this Toryboy seems to think. These doctor-like people have never come up with an explanation for Gulf war syndrome, which is real, and very unfair on the soldiers and their families affected, both in Britain and America:

https://www.naturodoc.com/library/pu...ax_vaccine.htm
Really, Henry, a link about vaccines from a site called NATURODOC dot COM? I pass.
__________________
"I think it is very beautiful for the poor to accept their lot, to share it with the passion of Christ. I think the world is being much helped by the suffering of the poor people." - "Saint" Teresa, the lying thieving Albanian dwarf

"I think accuracy is important" - Vixen
ddt is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th March 2018, 06:47 AM   #385
jimbob
Uncritical "thinker"
 
jimbob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: UK
Posts: 18,722
Originally Posted by ddt View Post
Really, Henry, a link about vaccines from a site called NATURODOC dot COM? I pass.
I have *my* doubts about that, but it's just that there are lots of potential biological weapons and anthrax is just one of them, albeit one tgat seems particularly suitable for weaponization given the fact that we know lots of states including the UK researched it.
__________________
OECD healthcare spending
Expenditure on healthcare
http://www.oecd.org/els/health-systems/health-data.htm
link is 2015 data (2013 Data below):
UK 8.5% of GDP of which 83.3% is public expenditure - 7.1% of GDP is public spending
US 16.4% of GDP of which 48.2% is public expenditure - 7.9% of GDP is public spending
jimbob is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th March 2018, 06:48 AM   #386
ddt
Mafia Penguin
 
ddt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 19,576
Originally Posted by mifune View Post
For all those saying the UK should have waited/should be waiting to make accusations, or shouldn't be "jumping to conclusions" - the problem is that that approach is exactly what Putin wants. And by waiting a few months/years for the thorough and full investigation first the UK would lose all impetus from its Allies.
And if there were any remote chance of recovery, then time is of essence.

Last night, Dutch journalist Derk Sauer who founded the Moscow Times in the early 1990s, commented on a Dutch talk show that it may well be possible that this hit was not directly authorized by Putin, but that some Russian state agency had acted on their own.
__________________
"I think it is very beautiful for the poor to accept their lot, to share it with the passion of Christ. I think the world is being much helped by the suffering of the poor people." - "Saint" Teresa, the lying thieving Albanian dwarf

"I think accuracy is important" - Vixen
ddt is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th March 2018, 06:56 AM   #387
ddt
Mafia Penguin
 
ddt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 19,576
Originally Posted by jimbob View Post
I have *my* doubts about that, but it's just that there are lots of potential biological weapons and anthrax is just one of them, albeit one tgat seems particularly suitable for weaponization given the fact that we know lots of states including the UK researched it.
Anthrax is very popular because it forms spores that can resist about anything:
Quote:
B. anthracis endospores, in particular, are highly resilient, surviving extremes of temperature, low-nutrient environments, and harsh chemical treatment over decades or centuries.
It is one of the few that does that, and thus make it suitable for weaponization.
__________________
"I think it is very beautiful for the poor to accept their lot, to share it with the passion of Christ. I think the world is being much helped by the suffering of the poor people." - "Saint" Teresa, the lying thieving Albanian dwarf

"I think accuracy is important" - Vixen
ddt is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th March 2018, 06:57 AM   #388
jimbob
Uncritical "thinker"
 
jimbob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: UK
Posts: 18,722
Originally Posted by ddt View Post
And if there were any remote chance of recovery, then time is of essence.

Last night, Dutch journalist Derk Sauer who founded the Moscow Times in the early 1990s, commented on a Dutch talk show that it may well be possible that this hit was not directly authorized by Putin, but that some Russian state agency had acted on their own.
I think that it would be very brave to order such an attack without authorisation from Putin, or without him having given the authority to order such attacks.

This was the use of a WMD on another nation's soil, which would have consequences in foreign relations.
__________________
OECD healthcare spending
Expenditure on healthcare
http://www.oecd.org/els/health-systems/health-data.htm
link is 2015 data (2013 Data below):
UK 8.5% of GDP of which 83.3% is public expenditure - 7.1% of GDP is public spending
US 16.4% of GDP of which 48.2% is public expenditure - 7.9% of GDP is public spending
jimbob is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th March 2018, 07:01 AM   #389
Captain_Swoop
Penultimate Amazing
 
Captain_Swoop's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 17,178
Originally Posted by ddt View Post
That would have been Sarin and Tabun then. Likewise, the Belgian and French soil is still replete with mustard gas shells from WW1. The mustard gas is still fine after a century, but the shells corrode...
There are several old WW1 'Filling Stations' where gas shells were made that are still off limits and contaminated.
Captain_Swoop is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th March 2018, 07:03 AM   #390
Captain_Swoop
Penultimate Amazing
 
Captain_Swoop's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 17,178
Originally Posted by ddt View Post
And if there were any remote chance of recovery, then time is of essence.

Last night, Dutch journalist Derk Sauer who founded the Moscow Times in the early 1990s, commented on a Dutch talk show that it may well be possible that this hit was not directly authorized by Putin, but that some Russian state agency had acted on their own.
History has plenty of examples of underlings anticipating and interpreting the leaders words.
Captain_Swoop is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th March 2018, 07:06 AM   #391
Captain_Swoop
Penultimate Amazing
 
Captain_Swoop's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 17,178
Originally Posted by ddt View Post
Anthrax is very popular because it forms spores that can resist about anything:

It is one of the few that does that, and thus make it suitable for weaponization.
Again a small Scottish island used for testing anthrax back in the 50s and 60s was only finally decontaminated in the 90s
Captain_Swoop is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th March 2018, 07:08 AM   #392
Captain_Swoop
Penultimate Amazing
 
Captain_Swoop's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 17,178
Makes me quite nostalgic. Back in the 80s NBC training was high priority.
Captain_Swoop is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th March 2018, 07:28 AM   #393
GlennB
Loggerheaded, earth-vexing fustilarian
 
GlennB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Arcadia, Greece
Posts: 23,477
Originally Posted by ddt View Post
Only tested in Uzbekistan. It was developed in Shikhany in Russia, in a facility set-up there in 1928 with the aid of chemists of the Reichswehr (to add a historical note).
That's a pretty minor nitpick, but I'm going from:

'Soviet defectors and American officials say the Nukus plant was the major research and testing site for a new class of secret, highly lethal chemical weapons called ''Novichok,'' which in Russian means ''new guy.'''

However, the important point is that Novichok could well have got into non-Soviet hands.
__________________
"Even a broken clock is right twice a day. 9/11 truth is a clock with no hands." - Beachnut
GlennB is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th March 2018, 08:13 AM   #394
PartSkeptic
Illuminator
 
PartSkeptic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: South Africa
Posts: 3,003
Such an important crime and such a simple solution.

No wonder world wars get started so easily - when governments are so primed to be over-reactive.

Round up the usual suspects?

New crime busting technique - man gets killed by being hit on the head by a bottle. Verdict - must have been a Frenchman because it was a champagne bottle.

Oh wait. It could not have been a Frenchman because the bottle was full when the victim was hit.

False flag crime just before the Russian election and the World cup? Naah.

If it was a false flag attack, the culprits must have been supremely confident of not getting caught.
__________________
**Agnostic theist. God/Satan/Angels/Demons may not exist - but I choose to think the probability is that they do. By personal experience.**
PartSkeptic is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th March 2018, 08:50 AM   #395
jimbob
Uncritical "thinker"
 
jimbob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: UK
Posts: 18,722
Originally Posted by ddt View Post
And if there were any remote chance of recovery, then time is of essence.

Last night, Dutch journalist Derk Sauer who founded the Moscow Times in the early 1990s, commented on a Dutch talk show that it may well be possible that this hit was not directly authorized by Putin, but that some Russian state agency had acted on their own.
Originally Posted by PartSkeptic View Post
Such an important crime and such a simple solution.

No wonder world wars get started so easily - when governments are so primed to be over-reactive.

Round up the usual suspects?

New crime busting technique - man gets killed by being hit on the head by a bottle. Verdict - must have been a Frenchman because it was a champagne bottle.

Oh wait. It could not have been a Frenchman because the bottle was full when the victim was hit.

False flag crime just before the Russian election and the World cup? Naah.

If it was a false flag attack, the culprits must have been supremely confident of not getting caught.
It's obvious because, like all good gangsters, Putin wanted people to know who was behind it but with a shred of deniability.

ETA: The weapon was a message.
__________________
OECD healthcare spending
Expenditure on healthcare
http://www.oecd.org/els/health-systems/health-data.htm
link is 2015 data (2013 Data below):
UK 8.5% of GDP of which 83.3% is public expenditure - 7.1% of GDP is public spending
US 16.4% of GDP of which 48.2% is public expenditure - 7.9% of GDP is public spending

Last edited by jimbob; 17th March 2018 at 08:56 AM.
jimbob is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th March 2018, 08:53 AM   #396
Checkmite
Skepticifimisticalationist
 
Checkmite's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Gulf Coast
Posts: 22,206
Originally Posted by ddt View Post
Last night, Dutch journalist Derk Sauer who founded the Moscow Times in the early 1990s, commented on a Dutch talk show that it may well be possible that this hit was not directly authorized by Putin, but that some Russian state agency had acted on their own.
My own (amateur) theory is that Putin has likely personally approved a general policy to eliminate exiled "enemies of the state" when opportunities present themselves, but isn't personally concerned with details such as approving specific targets or individual operations, those things being handled at the agency level.

For instance there was probably no special, focused priority on killing Skripal right now; his name was on a list, and his Moscow-based daughter making a trip to see him provided an opportunity which was taken advantage of.
__________________
"¿WHAT KIND OF BIRD?
¿A PARANORMAL BIRD?"
--- Carlos S., 2002

Last edited by Checkmite; 17th March 2018 at 08:57 AM.
Checkmite is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th March 2018, 08:59 AM   #397
ddt
Mafia Penguin
 
ddt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 19,576
Originally Posted by jimbob View Post
I think that it would be very brave to order such an attack without authorisation from Putin, or without him having given the authority to order such attacks.

This was the use of a WMD on another nation's soil, which would have consequences in foreign relations.
With the Syria, Ukraine, MH17 and other dossiers one poisoning on top of it is not of much importance; and, well, Britain is too much embroiled in Brexit these days that it doesn't make much out of it. The collateral damage to other persons may not have been anticipated or factored in. That may have been the thinking behind it.

I don't know the ins and outs of the Russian power structure, but even the most totalitarian dictators didn't control everything and had underlings that acted on their own. So it cannot be ruled out, IMHO.

There's what the Captain said:
Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop View Post
History has plenty of examples of underlings anticipating and interpreting the leaders words.
and in fact, it helps Putin right now in his domestic narrative of embattled Russia and that it needs a strong leader, in the run-up to the elections.

Another possibility is that Skripal was long on the death-list of the FSB. He was a defector, after all, who sang and ratted out other FSB spies.
__________________
"I think it is very beautiful for the poor to accept their lot, to share it with the passion of Christ. I think the world is being much helped by the suffering of the poor people." - "Saint" Teresa, the lying thieving Albanian dwarf

"I think accuracy is important" - Vixen

Last edited by ddt; 17th March 2018 at 09:26 AM.
ddt is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th March 2018, 09:04 AM   #398
ddt
Mafia Penguin
 
ddt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 19,576
Originally Posted by PartSkeptic View Post
Such an important crime and such a simple solution.

No wonder world wars get started so easily - when governments are so primed to be over-reactive.

Round up the usual suspects?

New crime busting technique - man gets killed by being hit on the head by a bottle. Verdict - must have been a Frenchman because it was a champagne bottle.

Oh wait. It could not have been a Frenchman because the bottle was full when the victim was hit.
So when I go out to the supermarket, buy a bottle of champagne, drink it, and then hit you over the head with the empty bottle, you won't point your finger at me because I'm Dutch and not French?

Got it.

Now, pray tell me, at which supermarket can I buy a few grams of Novichok agent?
__________________
"I think it is very beautiful for the poor to accept their lot, to share it with the passion of Christ. I think the world is being much helped by the suffering of the poor people." - "Saint" Teresa, the lying thieving Albanian dwarf

"I think accuracy is important" - Vixen
ddt is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th March 2018, 09:11 AM   #399
Babbylonian
Penultimate Amazing
 
Babbylonian's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 11,070
Originally Posted by jimbob View Post
It's obvious because, like all good gangsters, Putin wanted people to know who was behind it but with a shred of deniability.

ETA: The weapon was a message.
If a Russian was caught with the weapon in one hand and a signed order from Putin in the other, some folks in this thread would still be trying to pretend the Russian government (led by their dictator) had nothing to do with it.
Babbylonian is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th March 2018, 09:12 AM   #400
ddt
Mafia Penguin
 
ddt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 19,576
Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
That article also says:
Quote:
After touring the plant last year, inspectors from the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, the Hague-based agency that oversees the 1993 treaty banning chemical weapons, concluded that the institute may have tested weapons but was not a production site.
There's another NYT article with gruesome details of the thousands of dogs used as guinea pigs there.

Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
However, the important point is that Novichok could well have got into non-Soviet hands.
How likely is that? And how likely that it had been successfully stored for 25 years? According to Mirzayanov:
Quote:
Mirzayanov further said that there was probably no current stockpile of novichok to steal, because it has a limited shelf life and the preferred form would be a binary version in which two relatively benign, non-banned substances were mixed to produce novichok.

“The final product, in storage, after one year is already losing 2%, 3%. The next year more, and the next year more. In 10-15 years, it’s no longer effective.”
__________________
"I think it is very beautiful for the poor to accept their lot, to share it with the passion of Christ. I think the world is being much helped by the suffering of the poor people." - "Saint" Teresa, the lying thieving Albanian dwarf

"I think accuracy is important" - Vixen

Last edited by ddt; 17th March 2018 at 09:14 AM.
ddt is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Reply

International Skeptics Forum » General Topics » Social Issues & Current Events

Bookmarks

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 07:32 AM.
Powered by vBulletin. Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

This forum began as part of the James Randi Education Foundation (JREF). However, the forum now exists as
an independent entity with no affiliation with or endorsement by the JREF, including the section in reference to "JREF" topics.

Disclaimer: Messages posted in the Forum are solely the opinion of their authors.