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 14th March 2018, 02:53 AM   #201
Information Analyst
Philosopher
 
Information Analyst's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Besźel or Ul Qoma - not sure...
Posts: 8,454
Originally Posted by William Parcher View Post
Originally Posted by The New York Times
Britain’s Home Ministry...
Whut?!
Information Analyst 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 14th March 2018, 03:34 AM   #202
Information Analyst
Philosopher
 
Information Analyst's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Besźel or Ul Qoma - not sure...
Posts: 8,454
Originally Posted by Childlike Empress View Post
The Nerve Agent Too Deadly to Use. Until Someone Did. And It Failed To Kill Anyone.
Oh, that's alright, then....
Information Analyst 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 14th March 2018, 03:38 AM   #203
Information Analyst
Philosopher
 
Information Analyst's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Besźel or Ul Qoma - not sure...
Posts: 8,454
Originally Posted by Childlike Empress View Post
Blah-blah-blah! We can't trust anything the Russian state indignantly claims about this, any more than we could in connection with their state-sponsored athlete doping programme. If they ate nails, they'd pass corkscrews.
Information Analyst 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 14th March 2018, 03:38 AM   #204
Jack by the hedge
Safely Ignored
 
Jack by the hedge's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 9,190
Originally Posted by Information Analyst View Post
Whut?!


It's just down the street from the War Office. It's almost cute when journalists get government department names wrong. Like they're bamboozled by the quaintness of our having different names for stuff.
Jack by the hedge 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 14th March 2018, 03:45 AM   #205
baron
Philosopher
 
baron's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 6,753
Originally Posted by Childlike Empress View Post
The Nerve Agent Too Deadly to Use. Until Someone Did. And It Failed To Kill Anyone.
That's a naive statement. Since when has the objective of terrorism been to kill people? A substance that, in microscopic doses, has the potential to cause long-lasting chaos and disruption is far more effective than a bomb or a gun. Its distributed presence in a city could result in that city effectively being shut down for weeks or months. The number of immediate fatalities is wholly irrelevant.
__________________
"I am a liar as well as a dwarf!"
baron is online now   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 14th March 2018, 03:51 AM   #206
baron
Philosopher
 
baron's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 6,753
Originally Posted by mifune View Post
But they would say that wouldn't they?
Are you suggesting the Russians are being anything other than truthful? I mean, it's not like they lied about the almost identical attack on Litvinenko, it's not like they lied about state-sponsored doping, it's not like they lied about shooting down Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, it's not like they lied about bombing civilians in Syria, it's not like they lie as a matter of course about literally every accusation ever put to them.
__________________
"I am a liar as well as a dwarf!"
baron is online now   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 14th March 2018, 04:01 AM   #207
ddt
Mafia Penguin
 
ddt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 19,576
Originally Posted by Childlike Empress View Post
The Nerve Agent Too Deadly to Use. Until Someone Did. And It Failed To Kill Anyone.
Not yet. Are you forgetting that one of the scientists working in the lab that developed Novichok died five years after exposure?
__________________
"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 14th March 2018, 04:07 AM   #208
Darat
Lackey
Administrator
 
Darat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: South East, UK
Posts: 83,932
Originally Posted by Childlike Empress View Post
The Nerve Agent Too Deadly to Use. Until Someone Did. And It Failed To Kill Anyone.
Really that's your opinion, you do understand how nerve agents work? You do realise that they are meant as a weapon of mass killing? That if they were used in a war scenario two individuals wouldn't get the dedicated responses of an entire hospital and chemical weapons experts to try and save them?

Plus of course we don't know yet if they will survive.
__________________
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 14th March 2018, 04:20 AM   #209
Henri McPhee
Illuminator
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Bristol UK
Posts: 3,155
There is a bit of background about this Novichok business on the internet, which I admit comes from a Russian perspective:

https://www.rt.com/news/421200-uk-no...t-allegations/

It indicates to me that the finger cannot be pointed firmly at Moscow. The UK government has allowed in all sorts of Russian bad people in the past, as long as they have plenty of money. It's only some Scotland Yard PC Plods who accuse Putin of being behind that Litvinenko business. I would be interested to know where that polonium in that case came from exactly.

Quote:
Is Russia the only place it could come from?
Mirzayanov also contributed to a 1995 report by the US-based Henry L. Stimson Center. The paper, which refers to the defector’s 1992 piece, noted multiple security flaws at Russia’s chemical weapons storage sites – a revelation unsurprising enough, given the poor state of Russian military at the time. While praising some basic security measures at the compounds, the report says: “By US standards, Russian chemical weapon storage facilities unquestionably appear vulnerable to attack from outside and theft from within.”

Read more
Ex-spy Skripal poisoning 'clearly came from Russia' & 'will trigger response' – Tillerson

Nikolai Kovalev, who led Russia’s security service, the FSB, from 1996 to 1998, told RIA Novosti that the likes of ‘Novichok’ were “stockpiled in former Soviet Union republics.” Russian Senator Franz Klintsevich told the Zvezda TV Channel that the Soviet military sent the so-called “frontline packages” containing the agent to various parts of the country. “It could have been stored in any [post-Soviet] country, including Georgia and Ukraine,” he noted.

Back in 1999, it emerged that the Pentagon might gain access to one of the chemical plants that reportedly produced ‘Novichok.’ The New York Times reported that the US military was going to spend up to $6 million “to demilitarize the so-called Chemical Research Institute” located in the Uzbek city of Nukus. “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,’” the piece said.

How was it proven to have been Russia, if nerve agents can be produced anywhere?

Last edited by Henri McPhee; 14th March 2018 at 04:23 AM.
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 14th March 2018, 04:35 AM   #210
GlennB
Loggerheaded, earth-vexing fustilarian
 
GlennB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Arcadia, Greece
Posts: 23,712
Originally Posted by Information Analyst View Post
Blah-blah-blah! We can't trust anything the Russian state indignantly claims about this, any more than we could in connection with their state-sponsored athlete doping programme. If they ate nails, they'd pass corkscrews.
I agree with your take on Russia, but if there is a treaty that lays down the correct procedure in such cases then perhaps Britain was wrong not to follow it and has handed Russia a tactical advantage.
__________________
"Even a broken clock is right twice a day. 9/11 truth is a clock with no hands." - Beachnut
GlennB is online now   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 14th March 2018, 04:36 AM   #211
fagin
Philosopher
 
fagin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: As far away from casebro as possible.
Posts: 6,662
RT? Well I'm convinced.
__________________
There is no secret ingredient - Kung Fu Panda
fagin is online now   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 14th March 2018, 04:45 AM   #212
trustbutverify
Philosopher
 
trustbutverify's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 7,217
Originally Posted by Henri McPhee View Post
There is a bit of background about this Novichok business on the internet, which I admit comes from a Russian perspective:
It comes from Putin's ridiculous propaganda service, which you quote here for obvious reasons.
__________________
"The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated." -- Mahatma Gandhi

Wollen owns the stage
trustbutverify 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 14th March 2018, 04:47 AM   #213
Ambrosia
Good of the Fods
 
Ambrosia's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 2,483
Originally Posted by baron View Post
Its distributed presence in a city could result in that city effectively being shut down for weeks or months. The number of immediate fatalities is wholly irrelevant.

Parts of the city (I call Salisbury a city in the loosest terms) here are still shut down. some locations might be shut for several weeks.

Parts of the shopping centre are still closed. There are several small businesses there that are unlikely to have insurance that covers this kind of thing that are probably not going to reopen.

Footfall at the city centre markets is waaay down.

The hotel I work at is fully booked, but that's only as all the Sky news people have booked the place out indefinitely. We've lost a bunch of business in the restaurant from people not wanting to come eat in Salisbury "in case they were poisoned"

Something like this released on a larger scale in a bigger city would cause serious problems aside from the obvious health related ones.
Ambrosia 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 14th March 2018, 05:30 AM   #214
ponderingturtle
Orthogonal Vector
 
ponderingturtle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 44,580
Originally Posted by Henri McPhee View Post
There is a bit of background about this Novichok business on the internet, which I admit comes from a Russian perspective:

https://www.rt.com/news/421200-uk-no...t-allegations/

It indicates to me that the finger cannot be pointed firmly at Moscow. The UK government has allowed in all sorts of Russian bad people in the past, as long as they have plenty of money. It's only some Scotland Yard PC Plods who accuse Putin of being behind that Litvinenko business. I would be interested to know where that polonium in that case came from exactly.
Up next we will see news stories on how accident prone reporters critical of Putin really are with their propensity to fall out of windows and such.
__________________
Sufficiently advanced Woo is indistinguishable from Parody
"There shall be no *poofing* in science" Paul C. Anagnostopoulos
Force ***** on reasons back" Ben Franklin
ponderingturtle 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 14th March 2018, 05:31 AM   #215
Darat
Lackey
Administrator
 
Darat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: South East, UK
Posts: 83,932
Originally Posted by ponderingturtle View Post
Up next we will see news stories on how accident prone reporters critical of Putin really are with their propensity to fall out of windows and such.
Sesh and who doesn't have an odd gram or so of polonium knocking about the house?
__________________
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 14th March 2018, 06:17 AM   #216
Information Analyst
Philosopher
 
Information Analyst's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Besźel or Ul Qoma - not sure...
Posts: 8,454
Originally Posted by Henri McPhee View Post
It's only some Scotland Yard PC Plods who accuse Putin of being behind that Litvinenko business. I would be interested to know where that polonium in that case came from exactly.
I really hope this is satire....

Last edited by Information Analyst; 14th March 2018 at 06:34 AM.
Information Analyst 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 14th March 2018, 06:24 AM   #217
Childlike Empress
Ewige Blumenkraft
 
Childlike Empress's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Ivory Tower
Posts: 15,968
Originally Posted by Information Analyst View Post
Blah-blah-blah! We can't trust anything the Russian state indignantly claims about this, any more than we could in connection with their state-sponsored athlete doping programme. If they ate nails, they'd pass corkscrews.

It's always nice to know who the good guys are.

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 14th March 2018, 06:33 AM   #218
Information Analyst
Philosopher
 
Information Analyst's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Besźel or Ul Qoma - not sure...
Posts: 8,454
BBC News: Russian spy - UK to expel 23 Russian diplomats

"The UK will expel 23 Russian diplomats after Moscow refused to explain how a Russian-made nerve agent was used on a former spy in Salisbury, the PM says.

Theresa May said the diplomats, who have a week to leave, were identified as "undeclared intelligence officers".

She also revoked an invitation to Russia's foreign minister, and said the Royal Family would not attend the Fifa World Cup later this year."
Information Analyst 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 14th March 2018, 06:34 AM   #219
Information Analyst
Philosopher
 
Information Analyst's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Besźel or Ul Qoma - not sure...
Posts: 8,454
Originally Posted by Childlike Empress View Post
It's always nice to know who the good guys are.

Is that all you've got?
Information Analyst 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 14th March 2018, 07:57 AM   #220
Aber
Graduate Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 1,383
Originally Posted by Henri McPhee View Post
I would be interested to know where that polonium in that case came from exactly.
And yet you have obviously not looked very hard:

Quote:
The Po-210 used to poison Mr Litvinenko was made at the Avangard facility in Sarov, Russia. One of the isotope-producing reactors at the Mayak facility in Ozersk, Russia, was used for the initial irradiation of bismuth. In my opinion, the Russian state or its agents were responsible for the poisoning.
— Norman Dombey, Supplementary Report by Norman David Dombey

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poison...der_Litvinenko
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 14th March 2018, 09:21 AM   #221
Henri McPhee
Illuminator
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Bristol UK
Posts: 3,155
I just think it's ridiculous indignation, and jumping to conclusions by the big soft things in the House of Commons. There is never any mention there of white farmers in Zimbabwe, or bugging, or the Syrian opposition using amputations as a punishment, or people living on air. Why don't they try to elicit the truth for once instead of disregarding leads and suspects, and thoroughly and intensively and properly investigate the matter. It's not always big bad Russia, or Putin.
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 14th March 2018, 09:30 AM   #222
Henri McPhee
Illuminator
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Bristol UK
Posts: 3,155
Originally Posted by Aber View Post
And yet you have obviously not looked very hard:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poison...der_Litvinenko
From that Wikipedia it looks as though the Italian Mafia could have been mixed up in that Litvinenko business. The British PC Plods just have an opinion, which is not evidence in law unless it comes from a real expert:

Quote:
On 1 November 2006, Litvinenko suddenly fell ill. Earlier that day he had met two former KGB officers, Andrey Lugovoy and Dmitry Kovtun. Lugovoy is a former bodyguard of Russian ex-Prime Minister Yegor Gaidar (also reportedly poisoned in November 2006) and former chief of security for the Russian TV channel ORT. Kovtun is now a businessman. Litvinenko had also had lunch at Itsu, a sushi restaurant on Piccadilly in London, with an Italian officer and "nuclear expert", Mario Scaramella, to whom he reportedly made allegations regarding Romano Prodi's connections with the KGB.[11] Scaramella, attached to the Mitrokhin Commission investigating KGB penetration of Italian politics, claimed to have information on the death of Anna Politkovskaya, 48, a journalist who was killed at her Moscow apartment in October 2006. He passed Litvinenko papers supposedly concerning her fate. On 20 November, it was reported that Scaramella had gone into hiding and feared for his life.
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 14th March 2018, 09:53 AM   #223
Babbylonian
Penultimate Amazing
 
Babbylonian's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 11,374
Originally Posted by Henri McPhee View Post
From that Wikipedia it looks as though the Italian Mafia could have been mixed up in that Litvinenko business. The British PC Plods just have an opinion, which is not evidence in law unless it comes from a real expert:
What? The only "mafia" mentioned in the entire article is the Russian mafia. Do you read the word "Italian" and automatically make the leap to organized crime?
Babbylonian is online now   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 14th March 2018, 11:55 AM   #224
mifune
Thinker
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 144
Originally Posted by Checkmite View Post
Russia provided Russian-backed rebels in Ukraine with a Buk missile platform which the incompetent rebels used to accidentally shoot down a civilian passenger airliner killing 298 innocent people, allowed the missile platform to be quickly smuggled back into Russia where it could be made inaccessible to any investigation, and then vetoed a UN Security Council resolution to establish a multinational tribunal to prosecute the crime. Yes, they literally do not care. Even their OPCW representative's statement pretending to be "offended" at the UK's assertions regarding the assassination of the spy is half-hearted theatre at best. They do not care. They don't play by the rules the rest of the world agrees to follow, and they do not care what anyone thinks about it.
agreed.

The much more interesting thing than 'who did it' (which is mundane, it was russia) is 'Why do it? And why a highly traceable nerve agent?'.


Originally Posted by the guardian
Whoever wanted to murder him might have used a subtler weapon. Instead, his assassins picked novichok. How it was deployed remains unclear.
Sergei Skripal scandal has sent UK-Russia relations tumbling. What next?

One former employee of the Russian special services said nerve agents were used only if the goal was to draw attention. “This is a very dirty method. There’s a risk of contaminating other people, which creates additional difficulties,” he told the Kommersant newspaper, adding: “There are far more delicate methods that professionals use.”

In other words, novichok was a gruesome calling card. As those who organised the hit must have known, the trail goes directly back to Moscow. The incident even took place down the road from Porton Down, the government’s military research base, which swiftly tested and identified the toxin.

All of which means Vladimir Putin and his FSB spy agency have probably sought to engineer a confrontation with the UK. Why now?
https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/...e-calling-card
mifune 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 14th March 2018, 11:56 AM   #225
mifune
Thinker
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 144
Originally Posted by baron View Post
Are you suggesting the Russians are being anything other than truthful? I mean, it's not like they lied about the almost identical attack on Litvinenko, it's not like they lied about state-sponsored doping, it's not like they lied about shooting down Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, it's not like they lied about bombing civilians in Syria, it's not like they lie as a matter of course about literally every accusation ever put to them.
I am shocked - shocked! to find that gambling is going on in here!
mifune 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 14th March 2018, 11:58 AM   #226
mifune
Thinker
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 144
Originally Posted by Henri McPhee View Post
There is a bit of background about this Novichok business on the internet, which I admit comes from a Russian perspective:

https://www.rt.com/news/421200-uk-no...t-allegations/

It indicates to me that the finger cannot be pointed firmly at Moscow. The UK government has allowed in all sorts of Russian bad people in the past, as long as they have plenty of money. It's only some Scotland Yard PC Plods who accuse Putin of being behind that Litvinenko business. I would be interested to know where that polonium in that case came from exactly.
Why don't you read the Litvinenko report and find out: https://www.gov.uk/government/public...der-litvinenko

It is a thorough and compelling investigation.
mifune 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 14th March 2018, 12:01 PM   #227
Babbylonian
Penultimate Amazing
 
Babbylonian's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 11,374
Originally Posted by mifune View Post
The much more interesting thing than 'who did it' (which is mundane, it was russia) is 'Why do it? And why a highly traceable nerve agent?'.
I don't know if they (he) want to engineer a confrontation with the UK. I think it's more likely that they want to "send a message" to anyone who might betray the Russian dictatorship/oligarchy. The secondary message, of course, is "we have chemical weapons and are willing to use them."
Babbylonian is online now   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 14th March 2018, 12:04 PM   #228
mifune
Thinker
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 144
Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
I agree with your take on Russia, but if there is a treaty that lays down the correct procedure in such cases then perhaps Britain was wrong not to follow it and has handed Russia a tactical advantage.
But what procedure is this? And what is it for?

Article IX section 2 refers to challenging another states certification, that is something else entirely to what the UK is doing. In time perhaps the UK will challenge Russia's certification of compliance with the treaty. But for now its entirely appropriate for the UK to do an investigation and take whatever police/diplomatic actions it thinks necessary to protect its citizens/reputation.

Russia is just trying to muddy the waters here.

Last edited by mifune; 14th March 2018 at 12:11 PM. Reason: added detail
mifune 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 14th March 2018, 12:07 PM   #229
mifune
Thinker
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 144
Originally Posted by Henri McPhee View Post
I just think it's ridiculous indignation, and jumping to conclusions by the big soft things in the House of Commons. There is never any mention there of white farmers in Zimbabwe, or bugging, or the Syrian opposition using amputations as a punishment, or people living on air. Why don't they try to elicit the truth for once instead of disregarding leads and suspects, and thoroughly and intensively and properly investigate the matter. It's not always big bad Russia, or Putin.
But whattabout!!
mifune 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 14th March 2018, 12:09 PM   #230
mifune
Thinker
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 144
Originally Posted by Babbylonian View Post
I don't know if they (he) want to engineer a confrontation with the UK. I think it's more likely that they want to "send a message" to anyone who might betray the Russian dictatorship/oligarchy. The secondary message, of course, is "we have chemical weapons and are willing to use them."
Yeah I am sure it is sending a message, but exactly who the message is intended for... I can think of several targets, and maybe it was aimed at more than one.
mifune 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 14th March 2018, 12:12 PM   #231
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: 12,774
Originally Posted by Babbylonian View Post
I don't know if they (he) want to engineer a confrontation with the UK. I think it's more likely that they want to "send a message" to anyone who might betray the Russian dictatorship/oligarchy. The secondary message, of course, is "we have chemical weapons and are willing to use them."
I dunno. Considering the U.S. situation, they may be trying to engineer a breaking of diplomatic ties.

I could see Putin putting pressure on our current administration to do some tsk-tsking about the U.K.'s unreasonable position on Russia.

The U.S.-U.K. bond has been pretty strong for a long time, mostly (but not always) to the good. I could see a goal being to weaken or even break it.

That being said, I do think your version is more likely Add a bit of undertone of "see, I can do what I want and no one can stop me" to it for internal propaganda.

ETA: Just to add to the U.S.-U.K thing, our president did fire our Secretary of State for saying "Yeah, Russia did it." Food for thought.

Last edited by Hellbound; 14th March 2018 at 12:18 PM.
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 14th March 2018, 12:15 PM   #232
ThatGuy11200
Scholar
 
Join Date: Jan 2018
Posts: 69
Originally Posted by mifune View Post
agreed.

The much more interesting thing than 'who did it' (which is mundane, it was russia) is 'Why do it? And why a highly traceable nerve agent?'.
The Russian presidential election is on the 18th. This incident would allow Putin to claim that the world is against Russia and so he needs to stay on because only he can stand up to the 'bullies', rather than some untested opossition candidate.
ThatGuy11200 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 14th March 2018, 12:16 PM   #233
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: 12,774
Originally Posted by ThatGuy11200 View Post
The Russian presidential election is on the 18th. This incident would allow Putin to claim that the world is against Russia and so he needs to stay on because only he can stand up to the 'bullies', rather than some untested opossition candidate.
Oh! that's a better internal propaganda bit than mine. I'm stealing it.
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 14th March 2018, 12:17 PM   #234
mifune
Thinker
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 144
Originally Posted by mifune View Post
But what procedure is this? And what is it for?

Article IX section 2 refers to challenging another states certification, that is something else entirely to what the UK is doing. In time perhaps the UK will challenge Russia's certification of compliance with the treaty. But for now its entirely appropriate for the UK to do an investigation and take whatever police/diplomatic actions it thinks necessary to protect its citizens/reputation.

Russia is just trying to muddy the waters here.

And just to add to this, imagine Mexico shelled the USA with chemical weapons, would the appropriate thing be to file a challenge with OPCW for treaty non-compliance, or would it be to react with military and diplomatic actions?
mifune 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 14th March 2018, 12:19 PM   #235
mifune
Thinker
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 144
Originally Posted by Hellbound View Post
Oh! that's a better internal propaganda bit than mine. I'm stealing it.
The only thing about that is no-one doubts in any way that Putin will win the election. And although some in the Russian state appear to be moderately concerned about turnout, Putin himself has not even bothered campaigning. It really looks like the election is not a worry for him.
mifune 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 14th March 2018, 12:19 PM   #236
Checkmite
Skepticifimisticalationist
 
Checkmite's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Gulf Coast
Posts: 22,516
Originally Posted by mifune View Post
agreed.

The much more interesting thing than 'who did it' (which is mundane, it was russia) is 'Why do it? And why a highly traceable nerve agent?'.
Why would Russia kill an exposed "traitor"? It seems to me that it is a simple message. The rest of the world may believe that a "prisoner exchange" took place in 2010 and that was the end of the story; obviously it was never Russia's intention that those convicted spies would be free to live the rest of their lives in peaceful exile.

As for why a traceable nerve agent, refer to the above post - Russia doesn't care. It doesn't care that a definitively Russian nerve toxin was used, because any chain-of-custody investigation stops at the Russian border, and anything that happened before that point is and will for all time be unknown and unproveable. If Putin wants to insist that "Jews" or "Ukrainians" or "Georgian separatists" who just happened to be based within Russia were responsible, nobody can definitively prove otherwise and that is plenty enough security.

Or it should have been. They're now growing disturbed because the UK is stepping outside of the ineffectual do-nothing "diplomatic route" that Russia insists every country conform to and apparently is threatening actual consequences; but that's unprecedented really; when Litvinenko was killed UK authorities were angry about Russian refusal to cooperate but ultimately did absolutely nothing.
__________________
"¿WHAT KIND OF BIRD?
¿A PARANORMAL BIRD?"
--- Carlos S., 2002
Checkmite is online now   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 14th March 2018, 12:28 PM   #237
mifune
Thinker
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 144
Originally Posted by Checkmite View Post
Why would Russia kill an exposed "traitor"? It seems to me that it is a simple message. The rest of the world may believe that a "prisoner exchange" took place in 2010 and that was the end of the story; obviously it was never Russia's intention that those convicted spies would be free to live the rest of their lives in peaceful exile.

As for why a traceable nerve agent, refer to the above post - Russia doesn't care. It doesn't care that a definitively Russian nerve toxin was used, because any chain-of-custody investigation stops at the Russian border, and anything that happened before that point is and will for all time be unknown and unproveable. If Putin wants to insist that "Jews" or "Ukrainians" or "Georgian separatists" who just happened to be based within Russia were responsible, nobody can definitively prove otherwise and that is plenty enough security.

Or it should have been. They're now growing disturbed because the UK is stepping outside of the ineffectual do-nothing "diplomatic route" that Russia insists every country conform to and apparently is threatening actual consequences; but that's unprecedented really; when Litvinenko was killed UK authorities were angry about Russian refusal to cooperate but ultimately did absolutely nothing.

The thing about ex spies is there does seem to have been a longstanding convention not to target such people from any side. So something has changed, its not business as usual.

As to what real actions the UK might take.. well I think this time they will expel diplomats and possibly even break off relations, and other such diplomatic actions. Will any of that mean much to Putin? Hard to say, I have read some analysis recently which suggested its embarrassing to him but it would have been considered a fairly likely response so presumably he was prepared for this result.

The only action which would really hurt Putin would be for the UK to start seizing assets of his and his friends. There are estimated to be hundreds of billions of russian assets in the UK and a LOT of them are tied to Putin and his inner circle. But legally it would probably require some radical new legislation and no doubt 'the city' and friends would be dead against it. So that avenue seems unlikely to be realised.
mifune 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 14th March 2018, 02:11 PM   #238
William Parcher
Show me the monkey!
 
William Parcher's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 20,860
Originally Posted by mifune View Post
The much more interesting thing than 'who did it' (which is mundane, it was russia) is 'Why do it? And why a highly traceable nerve agent?
They may have already used this particular nerve agent before on British soil without it ever being detected. Maybe they thought they could use it again without detection.
__________________
Bigfoot believers and Bigfoot skeptics are both plumb crazy. Each spends more than one minute per year thinking about Bigfoot.
William Parcher 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 14th March 2018, 02:19 PM   #239
baron
Philosopher
 
baron's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 6,753
I would imagine their thinking went along these lines:

We'll use this nerve agent because, as it is very difficult to detect. it's unlikely it will be traced back to us and therefore we'll have the advantage of everyone knowing we did it but not being able to prove it. In the unlikely event that it is identified and traced back to us, who cares? We'll just laugh and posture and lie like we always do, because it's served us well in the past. Comrades.
__________________
"I am a liar as well as a dwarf!"
baron is online now   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 14th March 2018, 02:19 PM   #240
Information Analyst
Philosopher
 
Information Analyst's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Besźel or Ul Qoma - not sure...
Posts: 8,454
Originally Posted by Checkmite View Post
Why would Russia kill an exposed "traitor"? It seems to me that it is a simple message. The rest of the world may believe that a "prisoner exchange" took place in 2010 and that was the end of the story; obviously it was never Russia's intention that those convicted spies would be free to live the rest of their lives in peaceful exile.
Sets a crap precedent for any prospective exchanges in the future, though.

Quote:
They're now growing disturbed because the UK is stepping outside of the ineffectual do-nothing "diplomatic route" that Russia insists every country conform to and apparently is threatening actual consequences; but that's unprecedented really; when Litvinenko was killed UK authorities were angry about Russian refusal to cooperate but ultimately did absolutely nothing.
The way Russia has reacted does suggest that they didn't quite expect the whole incident to be treated so seriously and so publicly as it has been.
Information Analyst 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 01:13 PM.
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.