tv Documentary RT March 13, 2018 5:30pm-6:01pm EDT
used by u.k. prime minister to resume pinning blame on russia for the poison attack on a former russian intelligence officer turned british spy claims are made and threats flaunted of course without evidence. crosstalk in the poison attack in britain i'm joined by my guest alexander make your us in london he is a writer on legal affairs as well as editor in chief of the duran dot com also in london we have charles shoe bridge he is a security analyst and a former u.k. army and counterterrorism intelligence officer and in brussels we cross to any much shown she is a former british intelligence officer and writer or across time pros in effect that means you can jump in anytime you want and i always appreciate alexander macarius i'd like to go to an article that you just recently wrote and the title is very telling to resume the now demands russia provide prove itself innocence and that's a very curious form of jurisprudence isn't it isn't it backwards what she's asking
go ahead well that is exactly what she's asking because she's asking that by a certain specified time russia is supposed to say the provide the evidence that proves that it was not russian the russian state that did this thing now that completely reverses the burden of proof which is that some of it see is assumed to be innocent until they're proved guilty and that it is the person who makes the accusation who is supposed to prove it and this is a complete reversal of a principle that has underpinned the whole net the whole direction of european jurisprudence since the middle ages but that's the kind of situation which way already. ok annie. it seems to me with the prime minister's words but she's already forgotten in this investigation because she already has
a culprit i mean again it seems everything's upside down and by doing this like we had in the limp in the case where you've already decided the guilty party and you won't go down different avenues to do actually real investigation and find out what happened this is a repeat that's the only thing that's similar with the limbaugh. case before is it's been politicized instead of going through the nuts and bolts of doing detective work go ahead any absolutely and we saw this right when the story broke last week in the sense that the british media stampeded down this path but i have to give certain credit to the home secretary of the u.k. amber rug because she did say for many days we need to allow the police to investigate this and identify the substance now in terms of investigation i've suggested three avenues they have to go down first of all the boots on the street getting eyewitness accounts c.c.t.v. footage that sort of thing secondly identifying the substance which they're now say they have done but thirdly and crucially finding out what this guy's been up to
every last eight years since he was rinse clean by the russian service before he was sent over pardoned and sent back to the u.k. and would have been clean of intelligence i am i six once he arrived in the u.k. so i can't see a motive there but in terms of the substance as well yes sure if this nerve agent is what they say it is it might have been developed in russia thirty years ago but then you know plenty of nerve agents been developed by plenty of other countries as well including the us germany the u.k. so in this case to say it was developed in russia thirty years ago means that it must be in the russians that did it it is a bit like saying well porton down the u.k. scientific establishment secretly developed something called vieques another nerve agent in the one nine hundred fifty s. and that was used to assassinate kim. brother the north korean leader last year so you know you couldn't be to say well. developed this poison that assassinated this guy it's crazy but there seems to be very little critical analysis going on in the
stampede to blame russia well they don't want to be critical analysis let me go to charles here i mean it seems like the entire political establishment and the media in the u.k. are very happy with the words that it's russia's fault and now we have to wait for the consequences here i mean they're not even not even there's like the ultimatum is on both sides now the russians want to say well what is this stuff show it to us maybe we can help you identify it and then the ultimatum is that you have to admit your guilt on the british side here i mean the british side doesn't want any kind of resolution here they have already got what they wanted they have a narrative that you know russia is bad and we have to sanction it somehow in some form and maybe we could mention the world cup here in a second here go ahead charles. yes undoubtedly you can see from the comments of some politicians but especially that of the mainstream media here in the u.k. and to lesser extent elsewhere that there is an agenda driving this irrespective of what the facts that lay behind this incident i mean and he quite rightly recognised
remember i speak as a as a former detective and investigator in matters similar to this in some ways. that motif is an important part of that it isn't everything but the and then the other evidence to see which way it points the evidence of the actual the actual physical evidence here such as been disclosed because a great amount of it of course hasn't been disclosed and perhaps hasn't yet been discovered isn't in any way conclusive in this case but when it comes to motive you know arguably there is a motive for russia to kill somebody that or to attempt to kill somebody who is seen as a traitor but in this particular case there is a much greater motive surely to avoid this kind of situation just weeks before before russian elections just before the world cup at a time when there is enough stress and problems between the west and east as it currently stands why russia would carry out this kind of attack particularly it
would appear using a method that anybody that used that method would surely know would point it straight back to russia so we can say here i think somewhat conclusively at least at this stage that whatever the circumstances of the attack whoever carried it out if they did use this nerve agent that's been described did it knowing that russia would almost certainly be blamed and then you therefore you have to ask the question would that be russia you know if alexander again i am glad that charles brought that up i mean why in the world will just like in the case of linfen the enco you know use a means to try to kill someone that is so extraordinary that you know the possibilities of who could have done it is very much narrow destro and charles pointed out this seems i'm sorry for me it looks like. set up ok and the timing is perfect for people that want to. the push the narrative of worse relations well between russia and the west we are one more other thing charles the whole situation going on in the ukraine where it's usually are grossly unreported in the in the
western media go ahead alexander yes i mean there is very wide speculation not perhaps in the mainstream media but elsewhere that this is a kind of provocations of sort of a provocation intended to worsen relations even further between russia and of the west and to complicate the situation in advance of the world cup and the russian presidential elections are personally i'm going to resist the temptation to speculate along this these lines simply because we just don't know enough about this incident and i want to just also repeat a point that charles ridge made which i think is an entirely valid one i have not been an investigator but in my past life i have seen the results of many investigations and very often in fact more often than not the clue to a person's death is or or attack is in the person themselves in their background and
we need to know a norful lot more about this person and why he was attacked and why he was and chosen as an attack and to start pointing fingers at this very early stage is is frankly completely wrong. i would make one final point at this in response to all of this which is of course when ultimatums are made such as the one that to raise the main has made it is to mine mind a sign that the british government doesn't have the evidence yes the points to russia because if you'd stayed why would eat. challenge the russians to prove their innocence in that kind of way you know any one of the things that's really interesting in this. poll he was part of this prisoner exchange exchange in two thousand and ten presumably they could have pretty much squeezed everything out of
the. british intelligence i mean he kind of went to the u.k. is a blank sheet i would imagine you know what could you speculate that so it's kind of was your world at one time and he was in the world after going through all that being a liberal russian prison for espionage for the british government i mean what the world could he possibly gotten themselves into that would warrant this kind of you know murder attempts going here because i'm mystified. this is absolutely the key question in my view so we have a guy who was recruited and betrayed his country for ten years he worked as an agent for m i six and he handed over other agent names across europe reportedly and then he was caught he was tried he was convicted he was imprisoned and then he was pardoned by the russian state and allowed to be to go free to go to the u.k. as part of the two thousand and ten spy swap with a russian alleged legals which included anna chapman who went back to russia so of
course russia would have known exactly what he knew they would have put him through the mill in terms of getting any intelligence ask him and they would not have released him if they thought he was still a threat you know then of course when he arrived in the u.k. he would have been debriefed for weeks by m i six before allowed to go free and live a life and you know he lived his life quite openly so this is the key question and i've been saying this ever since the story broke what on earth was he involved in in the last eight years since he's been living in the u.k. who was he working with who were its contacts and that might give the investigators a clue to who might indeed have perpetrated this attack i don't think it's going to be a russian state retaliatory thing i just can't see the motivation and i don't either . you know charles i mean what i mean there's some speculation there's so many people that have their own theories i think that there's a page on the argue web site all the different conspiracies out there some people are making a connection to jonathan christopher steele i mean does that make any sense to you
. now it doesn't first of all of course this was a long. piece i was chris christie always along any. knowledge of what's going on in the russian military or security establishment he wasn't really in a position to provide any of this kind of information and also i think i've read maybe three maybe not true but still him self so in talking to i think to the guardian which is a lot of contact pushing the stay with us if examples that actually he wasn't involved in any way production of that i'm going to jump in here we have to go to a hard break and after that short break we'll continue our discussion on british russian relations with.
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welcome back across like where all things are considered i'm people about whom i knew were discussing u.k. russia relations. you know alexander one of the interim a cure all your things about the u.k. since the end of the soviet union is that a lot of ethnic russians with many of them with very dubious pasts in ways that beat their money and found their way into the u.k. when it's convenient they say there are political dissident are always like that little trick here. with their pockets all stuffed full of money but it's kind of turned into a kind of morbid playground of settling scores that have you know have some kind of connection with russia in the case that we're talking about right now that it looks like it was a purely british affair i mean you know don't think that you isn't there any kind
of reflection in the u.k. that maybe you shouldn't let the crooked billionaires into the u.k. i know they've got a lot of money and money does talk go ahead alexander what is so strange about this is yes the reason if there is some reflection about this there are people who are saying we've allowed all sorts of very. well from russia to wrong here but in all coming to twist the blame for that is actually being directed at russia in terms of these very strange people that you're talking about are somehow connected to the russian authorities whereas as you and peter peter and i both know they're not all most of these people are antagonistic to the russian authorities and of course they have their own quarrels and that's why they've come to london to get out of the reach of the russian authorities and they're bringing their problems to britain and we've seen the results so. if the
british really do take action to stop these people coming to britain it's not going to it's not going to. the russians the russians will be pleased about it this is again part of the upside down world that we were talking about before you know anyone what do what does the government want i mean obviously russia has and given any kind of evidence about this case forensic evidence i mean what in the world would be expect the russians to do and what do you think the sanction will be afterwards because you know. she's a political mess right now. she doesn't have a memorable time in office here she's found this one issue she's really pushing it here i mean coming to conclusions before facts are presented not ever to the public by the way here i mean you know what is you know is this an internal domestic issue
for her i mean she's found this one issue the kind of booster a little bit because she needs a whole lot of boosting go ahead any. well i think as you say she's in a very weak political position. and she will be under pressure from l i six because bear in mind this guy worked as an agent and i six for a decade and was handed back to them they had a duty of protection to their source and they seem to fumbled it and allowed him to be attacked in the u.k. by persons unknown but again in terms of the political aspects and also the scientific aspects we need to get the forensics around the chemicals that were used allegedly used so just to make statements in parliament which are quite bellicose is reckless at this point and she did say well it could have been the russian state or it could have been they didn't take enough care of securing their nerve agents so it's their fault anyway but bear in mind there is you know other there are other
cases from history that other countries have done the say. thing so for example come back to two thousand and one in the immediate aftermath of nine eleven there was a number of cases of militarized anthrax being sent through the post to politicians and news editors across the u.k. five people died seventeen people were injured and everyone saying oh you know it must be an outside source it turned out after years infestation it was some rogue agent allegedly coming out of the itself so you know even the usa can't secure its biological and weapons mass of mass destruction so immediately say it must be the russian state because they developed this thirty years ago even though lots of other people have the recipe they must have been slacking in protecting it i think is disingenuous at best and potentially hugely damaging to diplomatic relationships and world peace at worst you know charles you know i was
been made aware that i think it was in one thousand nine hundred two or a lot of these chemical agents they were revealed to the public so how do you know certainly you need the facilities to make it but the recipe the roadmap is there what it it's all about what kind of compounds and all that so that kind of adds to the wrinkle but charles what do you what do you think that you know what does to resume really want i mean does she want to ratchet up this confrontation with russia and it to what degree i mean there are so many fronts now where there is tension and you know it's one of these games of chicken and i can tell you the and i make a very clear to our viewers here the russian state's not going to blink just get used to it there's plenty of cases we can see that around the world go ahead charles yes one wonders the extent to which in so many matters in fact and this is a good example of the extent to which to reason and even her government ministers are actually driving this situation or being driven by it and if they're being driven by their being driven by actors behind the scenes perhaps even those that
may have been involved in some degree and who. could benefit from it unlike russia which doesn't seem to be getting any benefit from this action whatsoever we raise the subject of all the cards not just from russia from ukraine and elsewhere in the world or unsavory in many cases in london we ask the question why they are allowed to settle in one needs to look in some detail at the donations to political parties in this country in the united kingdom labor for example the opposition parties today as recently challenge to. the government to stop taking donations from russian exile oligarchs to their political input terms of political donations to the conservative party that's been declined so these people where would political power that is well beyond their shall we say representative basis and so that may be a reason why they're untouchable here but let's look at this not a chalk that this alleged chemical agent that's been years i've just read very recently an one thousand nine hundred nine article in the new york times no less
not a probably russian organ organ whatsoever describing in one thousand nine hundred the united states efforts to help clear up. the production plant or testing plants involving allegedly this chemical agent navi chalk this in one thousand nine hundred ninety it's not in russia it's in its pakistan and so we can see that this agent is likely to be not just produced by russia but elsewhere as well and furthermore of course it seems to be that certainly the political consensus amongst many of the actual chemists not the so-called experts from organizations such as ballin cat and others that are then wheeled out by the media in these circumstances because they know that coverage will be pro-u.s. u.k. in every instance but real chemists are saying that with the one consensus seems to be that even if it's not particularly easy to make the ingredients for making this alleged chemical agent are very very easy to come by and so therefore it's conceivable that anybody with some training at least anywhere in the world could
have made this unless we have more evidence and we haven't. got that evidence to pin it on russia as yet you know alexander reading your article that i mentioned at the beginning of the program and you gave you elaborated on the case of lynn lynn from yank oh and. the results of the investigation way after the political storm and at its impact here and they found that they couldn't determine where it came from and a number of issues here but the storm had already passed ok the impression had already been made you know it was the putin did it ok that was that they're looking for that moment right now i surmised probably this is going to happen again but it will be far from the public view it will be like an appendix in history go ahead. that is the fatal danger of prejudging something before all the facts are there and that is exactly what happened in the case the whole assumption at the outset that
the russian state was involved in the litvinenko case was that polonium was very expensive was only produced in russia and could be traced there when the inquiry that was convened to learn a bit through none of it look at that and none of it was true none of it was true but by that point as you rightly say it was far too late because the idea that the russians the russians were involved had already become fixed and there was nothing realistically by that point that was going to change it and the result was again as annie and charles has said a lot of other possible lines of inquiry were not followed up you know any one of the things that should be concerning us all is that the different layers of sanctions that the u.s. has put on in the european union i mean if there is a separation between the west and russia further and further apart and you know i
surmise that you know and i hear this in circles here in moscow and said who cares why do we want to relationship with these people they all seem pathological ok i mean it was only a few hours ago the house intel committee came out and said well after eighteen months. no collusion ok and now we get the story in the u.k. it's like passing the baton let's keep it going the russian side is just exhausted by all of this you know inventing things lying exaggerating the media the media is so compliant it's click bait for them they don't have to think they don't have any sense of morality you know this this is a this is the the the chasm of trust or a lack of trust between the two and that's worrisome go ahead amie no i totally agree i mean we have a situation where over the last few years because of the west's determination not to try and resolve diplomatic issues with russia russia is pivoted towards the east you know all these new trade deals with china all these new transport lines
pipelines all the rest of it are huge for russia and huge for china that is not being reported in the west alternatively what you get is someone like me who talks about this and i was on r.t. the night the story broke two hours later i was on b.b.c. news night the night the story broke and i said exactly the same points and yet on the one hand putin's useful idiot or a stooge yes on the other hand praise from the newsnight formants and that duality is actually quite stark when you're living through it and i think that's what we're seeing at the moment with the western media is dangerous because exacerbate diplomatic relations between the west and russia and i hope that we can dial down these accusations and come to some sort of diplomatic understanding proper forensic and investigation and that we can step away from the brink which is what i think we're beginning to look at you know that it's very interesting all of you bring up
very rational points in and ways to resolve this or try to understand it but unfortunately politicians in the media they don't like about way that's all the time we have many thanks to my guests in london and in brussels and thanks to our viewers for watching us here at r.t. you see you next time and remember crosstalk rules. this baby and. they did this on march eighteenth vote with your remote to zante for special coverage of the russian presidential election exit polls opinions real time results monitoring and much more.
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gets extremely hostile if you well and actually leads to hot wars you know a lot of times people make that argument but any time you have people exchanging goods from one country to another currencies that are predominate the u.s. dollar the u.s. dollar being all those are thirsty is an act of trade war in a lot of ways. i. wasn't one of them. i. know. i i i. i i. i i think.
that. you know people are. coming up calling for good chemistry donald trump removes america's top diplomat rex tillerson saying they didn't see eye to eye so cia director mike paul peo now set to take over rex tillerson seat at the state department jena high school is known for her role in the cia's torture program will take those with the agency's rains or not ahead coming up to moscow says it had nothing to do with the poisoning of the former double agent sort of case crippled in the u.k. last week. merican doomsday by purchasing survival equipment in underground bunkers as some continue to fear a north korean nuclear.