they just ♪can’t get enough of that Novichok, Novichok…♪

A new victim’s been discovered!

‘Second officer was poisoned with Novichok in Salisbury incident, police reveal’, telegraph.co.uk, August 15, 2019

“Counter Terrorism Detectives, who are investigating the nerve agent attack in 2018, have confirmed that traces of Novichok have been found in a blood sample which was taken at the time from a second police officer.

The officer from Wiltshire Police, who does not wish to be identified, was involved in the response to the poisoning of Sergei and Yulia Skripal.

The Telegraph understands the male officer displayed signs at the time of the incident that indicated exposure to a very small amount of Novichok.

He received appropriate medical treatment at the time and returned to duties shortly afterwards.

A police spokesman told the Telegraph the officer was part of the initial response.

Forensic examination of the officer’s blood sample, taken in March 2018, has since been carried out by scientists at the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory.

The forensic test – which uses a different method to that used to assess the clinical effects of nerve agent poisoning – has now given detectives confirmation that traces of Novichok were present.

The officer, the fourth person to be confirmed through forensic testing as a victim of the initial Salisbury attack, has been informed and continues to receive support from Wiltshire Police along with other officers and staff affected by the events in Salisbury and Amesbury last year.”

Well, now that number depends on Gina Haspel’s report about the dead ducks and sick children poisoned by the Novichoked bread the Skripals had been tossing to the ducks, doesn’t it? But Officer Nick Baily was allegedly #5.

“The spokesman said: “some of the other police officers that attended the scene may have been exposed, but it is possible to find forensic traces [of Novichok] in blood that have no health implications at the time”. [snip]

“The UK expelled 23 Russian diplomats and the US expelled 60 more in retaliation for poisoning of Sergei and Yulia Skripal in March last year, blaming the Russian military intelligence service, the GRU, for the botched assassination attempt.”

From the link above:

‘British authorities are confident they know “everything worth knowing” about the assassination attempt on Sergei Skripal, including a trail right up to Vladimir Putin.”


“The Russian intelligence agency behind the Salisbury nerve agent attack has been dismantled in the UK [<Moscow spins webb of lies] and will remain out of action for years to come, according to government sources.

The threat posed by the GRU, which carried out the attempted assassination of Skripal last March, has been severely curtailed as a result of the counter-terror investigation that exposed the agents who carried out the attack.’

“Counter-terror police working with the intelligence services were able to piece together the plot to murder Colonel Skripal, a former GRU officer who had sold secrets to MI6, using CCTV, including footage from the streets close to the Col Skripal’s home in Salisbury, and from passenger flight manifests and immigration data at the time of the attempted hit.”

(with photos of GRU Boris and Natasha)

‘Novichok Sickened 2nd British Officer, Police Say’, August 15, 2019, nytimes.com, Anna Schaverien

“Another officer, Detective Sgt. Nick Bailey, became critically ill after going to Mr. Skripal’s home to investigate the attack. Mr. Skripal, a former colonel in Russia’s military intelligence, and his daughter, Yulia, had been found unconscious and slumped on a bench.

Sergeant Bailey, who made contact with the nerve agent through the house’s door handle, made a full recovery. Last Sunday, he ran a marathon to raise money for the intensive-care unit at the hospital where he was treated.

Two other people, Dawn Sturgess and Charlie Rowley, also suffered high levels of exposure to Novichok as a result of the poisoning. They were accidentally exposed to residue in Amesbury, a town near Salisbury, months after the initial episode.

Both were critically sickened on July 1 when Ms. Sturgess sprayed a substance that she thought was [Nina Ricci l’air du Novichoque]  perfume onto her wrist from a bottle that Mr. Rowley, her boyfriend, had found. Investigators believe the vial was used to transport the Novichok that poisoned the Skripals. Mr. Rowley survived, but Ms. Sturgess died.

In the wake of the attack, tensions escalated to their highest pitch in decades between Britain and Russia, which London blamed for the poisoning. Moscow denied any involvement.” [snip]

“The European Union placed economic sanctions on the two suspects and two senior Russian military intelligence officials in January. And this month President Trump signed an executive order imposing new sanctions on Russia over the episode.”

From the Aug. 1 NYT: Mr. Trump has been reluctant to take punitive actions against Russia, instead seeking better relations with Moscow despite its well-documented interference in the 2016 election.

But in recent weeks, lawmakers from both sides of the aisle have criticized his administration’s delay in taking what they have called legally mandated action to follow up on sanctions imposed last August.’ [snip]

On Monday, the top Democrat and Republican on the House Foreign Affairs Committee sent a joint letter to the White House threatening new congressional action to force the administration’s hand.

“Failure by the administration to respond to Russia’s unabashed aggression is unacceptable and would necessitate that Congress take corrective action,” wrote the members, Eliot L. Engel, Democrat of New York, and Michael McCaul, Republican of Texas.

The law provided the administration with numerous sanctions to choose from. The executive order released by the White House on Thursday banned loans or other assistance to Russia by international financial institutions and prohibited most loans from American banks to Russia’s government.”

“They are suspected groundlessly,” the Kremlin’s spokesman told reporters when the European Union imposed travel bans and asset freezes on the suspects. “We have still not heard any evidence.”

A year after the poisoning, and after 13,000 hours of cleaning, the British government announced that the decontamination of the former Skripal home was complete. But the investigation into the attack continues.

“There are parts of the picture that we are continuing to piece together,” the Metropolitan Police statement said.”

All of which begs the question: what new sanctions will the US and UK levy on Russia?  Of course we’ll never know where Sergei and Yulia are, will we?

And sure we remember when they raised a new roof because…some of that Novichok gel (or was it a spray?) on the Skripal’s front door knob migrated upstairs into the attic or something…

This may have been my favorite story, though: ‘Public toilet in Salisbury ‘may have been used by Russian agents to prepare deadly Novichok’, themirror.co./uk.com, Aug. 4, 2018

“A public toilet may be where Russian agents mixed deadly Novichok used to try and assassinate ex-spy Sergei Skripal , according to reports.

It is thought Met Police counter terror cops are investigating the likelihood that the assassins smuggled the components to the nerve agent into the country then mixed it in a public toilet in Salisbury.

Forensic teams have discovered low-level contamination in toilets in the city’s Queen Elizabeth Gardens.”

But I’ll turn it over to BBC news: ‘BBC to dramatise Salisbury Novichok poisoning’, 17 May 2019, bbc.com/news

“The new drama is being written by Adam Patterson and Declan Lawn who said in a joint statement: “We feel extremely privileged to be telling this story.

“Extensive, meticulous research is at the heart of how we like to work and we’ve been overwhelmed by the generosity of the people of Salisbury who have opened up to us over the past few months and continue to do so.”

Piers Wenger, controller of BBC Drama, added: “The poisonings in Salisbury shocked the nation and had a huge impact on an unsuspecting community.

“This drama will capture the bravery, resilience and personal experience of the local people who faced a situation of unimaginable horror, so close to home.”

Casting for the drama is yet to be announced.”

An historical bonus from the good Ambassador:Pure: Ten Points I Just Can’t Believe About the Official Skripal Narrative’, March 7, 2109, Craig Murray, craigmurray.org; a few snippets:

“I still do not know what happened in the Skripal saga, which perhaps might more respectfully be termed the Sturgess saga. I cannot believe the Russian account of Boshirov and Petrov, because if those were their real identities, those identities would have been firmly established and displayed by now. But that does not mean they attempted to kill the Skripals, and there are many key elements to the official British account which are also simply incredible.

Governments play dark games, and a dark game was played out in Salisbury which involved at least the British state, Russian agents (possibly on behalf of the state), Orbis Intelligence and the BBC. Anybody who believes it is simple to identify the “good guys” and the “bad guys” in this situation is a fool. When it comes to state actors and the intelligence services, frequently there are no “good guys”, as I personally witnessed from the inside over torture, extraordinary rendition and the illegal invasion of Iraq. But in the face of a massive media campaign to validate the British government story about the Skripals, here are ten of the things I do not believe in the official account:

3) Nursing Care

The very first person to discover the Skripals ill on a park bench in Salisbury just happened to be the Chief Nurse of the British Army, who chanced to be walking past them on her way back from a birthday party. How lucky was that? The odds are about the same as the chance of my vacuum cleaner breaking down just before James Dyson knocks at my door to ask for directions. There are very few people indeed in the UK trained to give nursing care to victims of chemical weapon attack, and of all the people who might have walked past, it just happened to be the most senior of them!

The government is always trying to get good publicity for its armed forces, and you would think that the heroic role of its off-duty personnel in saving random poisoned Russian double agents they just happened to chance across, would have been proclaimed as a triumph for the British military. Yet it was kept secret for ten months. We were not told about the involvement of Colonel Alison McCourt until January of this year, when it came out by accident. Swollen with maternal pride, Col. McCourt nominated her daughter for an award from the local radio station for her role in helping give first aid to the Skripals, and young Abigail revealed her mother’s identity on local radio – and the fact her mother was there “with her” administering first aid.”

6) Mark Urban/Pablo Miller

The BBC’s “Diplomatic Editor” is a regular conduit for the security services. He fronted much of the BBC’s original coverage of the Skripal story. Yet he concealed from the viewers the fact that he had been in regular contact with Sergei Skripal for months before the alleged poisoning, and had held several meetings with Skripal.

This is extraordinary behaviour. It was the biggest news story in the world, and news organisations, including the BBC, were scrambling to fill in the Skripals’ back story. Yet the journalist who had the inside info on the world’s biggest news story, and was actually reporting on it, kept that knowledge to himself. Why? Urban was not only passing up a career defining opportunity, it was unethical of him to continually report on the story without revealing to the viewers his extensive contacts with Skripal.

The British government had two immediate reactions to the Skripal incident. Within the first 48 hours, it blamed Russia, and it slapped a D(SMA) notice banning all media mention of Skripal’s MI6 handler, Pablo Miller. By yet another one of those extraordinary coincidences, Miller and Urban know each other well, having both been officers together in the Royal Tank Regiment, of the same rank and joining the Regiment the same year.”

Conclusion

I do not know what happened in Salisbury. Plainly spy games were being played between Russia and the UK, quite likely linked to the Skripals and/or the NATO chemical weapons exercise then taking place on Salisbury Plain yet another one of those astonishing coincidences.”

(cross-posted from Café Babylon)

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At first Novichok described as thee most deadilest chemical weapon in the world. It immediate kills anybody exposed to it and any unprotected first responders.

It failed to immediately kill to anybody exposed to it.
Seems more like a bad flu instead.

Novichok degrades almost immediately.
Norvichock can stay around for months in a perfume bottle.

Only Russians can and did make it.
For a few bucks, university chem majors made a batch.

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wendy davis's picture

@MrWebster

the nerve agent is a chimera in time, too! you can even pull it out of a hat, like a wabbit!

thanks for the great chuckle-worthy additions, Mr.Webster. ; )

p.s. it did kill dawn sturgess, as far as we've been told, but iirc, there were extenuating circumstances given her addiction history. i love it that officer bailey ran a marathon recently, too.

and the saga continues....will it ever end?

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Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

@MrWebster

of the British spy world.

For those of you who never watched MST3K, the twin screw universal controller is an invention of Joel Robinson, janitor and inventor extraordinaire, who was shot into space by the evil scientists he worked for because they were jealous that his inventions were better than theirs. Having been shot into space, he is subjected to evil mind control experiments in the form of really bad movies beamed into his ship, which he is forced to watch while the evil scientists monitor his mind. In order to cope with this cheese-ridden exile, he builds robots to keep him company on the ship, and together they riff on the terrible media being forced down their throats.

Hmmm. This is starting to sound a little bit like C99.

Anyway, the twin screw universal controller does everything. Literally, everything, from controlling the ship's yaw and pitch to literally transforming Joel Robinson into a clown and one of his robots into a shish kebab:

twin screw universal controller.jpg

It seems Novichok is quite similar. It can kill you dead on contact. It can linger around in your bloodstream for over a year without killing you. It can be a closely guarded secret of Russian scientists (and only Russian scientists). It can be a group project from the science lab of the local commmunity college. It lifts, it separates, it can turn you into a nine-year-old Hindu boy...

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Actually, the issue at stake is patriotism. You must return to your world and put an end to the Commies. All it takes are a few good men.
--Q

Exit polls not involving George W. Bush or Hillary Clinton tend to be quite accurate.
--Doug Hatlem

wendy davis's picture

@Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal

amiga. esp. 'turn you into a 9-yr-old hindu boy.

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Alligator Ed's picture

Just so happens, etc.

Another well-researched article. Thanks.

Now where can I find l’air du Novichoque? This could ultimately shorten my Christmans shopping list next year.

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wendy davis's picture

@Alligator Ed

xmas list, santa gator? looks like ya gotta either keep your eyes peeled for knock-offs, or head to the soviet union... light bulb! maybe they left a few bottles hidden in the roof of that bog in the salisbury park!

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travelerxxx's picture

Gads, these idiots just keep digging themselves deeper and deeper into that hole they're in.

It's almost embarrassing, even if I didn't wish them the worst.

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wendy davis's picture

@travelerxxx

are addin' up to a fistful of dollars and pound notes by now, aren't they? i'd call it humiliating, myownself.

i did dig out more from craig murray on pablo miller, orbus, et.al., cuz i'd needed a refresher: Where They Tell You Not to Look, april 30, 2019 lots of tweets, plus this great aaron maté interview w/ luke harding.

by the by, i finally heard from Rosette Sewali, Producer & Membership Relations Manager after i'd asked TRNN why is might be that neither sharmini piries nor paul jay have been there since june 13; she wrote back:

'Thanks for your email. Paul and Sharmini have been on leave since early June. Updates will be available when we have more information.'

??????

'At the very beginning of the of the Skripal incident, the security services blocked by D(SMA) notice any media mention of Pablo Miller and told the media not to look at Orbis and the Steele dossier on Trump, acting immediately to get out their message via trusties in the BBC and Guardian. Gordon Corera, “BBC Security Correspondent”, did not name the source who told him to say this, but helpfully illustrated his tweet with a nice picture of MI6 Headquarters.

‘MI6’s most important media conduit (after Frank Gardner) is Luke Harding of the Guardian.’
..................
‘Given that the Steele dossier is demonstrably in large degree nonsense, it seems to me more probable the idea was to silence Skripal to close the danger that he would reveal his part in the concoction of this fraud. Remember he had sold out Russian agents to the British for cash and was a man of elastic loyalties. It is also worth noting that Luke Harding has a bestselling book currently on sale, in large part predicated on the truth of the Steele Dossier.

Steele, MI6 and the elements of the CIA which are out to get Trump, all would have a powerful motive to have the Skripal loose end tied.
Rule number one of real investigative journalism: look where they tell you not to look.’

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Alligator Ed's picture

@wendy davis Why don't we (me, you and your friends) think about this for a while?

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wendy davis's picture

@Alligator Ed

wait! hold the phone! that's a crocodile, santa gator, unless i miss my guess (nah, i've given that photo to you before...). that one butterfly is in her eye, no? how many eyelids?

but yes, we've learned to look where we're told not to look, a good rule for investigation, yes? but your xmas list? for your food competitors in the swamp? ; )

g', night, amigo; thanks for havin' some fun with this.

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Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

@Alligator Ed

wrong with the Democrats, they are dumb as a stump politically. Unless they really are trying to not only lose, but lose hard.

I called up CREDO the other day, and part of their automated message was "Funding the Trump resistance!" That is pretty much the worst marketing I've ever seen, apart perhaps from the Democratic bumper sticker I once saw "Not a Republican."

Like you said, telling people not to look somewhere generally has the opposite effect.

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Actually, the issue at stake is patriotism. You must return to your world and put an end to the Commies. All it takes are a few good men.
--Q

Exit polls not involving George W. Bush or Hillary Clinton tend to be quite accurate.
--Doug Hatlem

travelerxxx's picture

@wendy davis

... Given that the Steele dossier is demonstrably in large degree nonsense, it seems to me more probable the idea was to silence Skripal to close the danger that he would reveal his part in the concoction of this fraud.

I've thought this for quite some time now. Skripal being rather expendable, maybe not quite in the manner of Epstein, but his life not worth all that much except as fodder of a type.

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wendy davis's picture

@travelerxxx

fascinating you'd thought so, too. and wasn't the steele dossier first 'leaked' to buzzfeed for publication?

but here's a weird thing. dunno why, but i hadn't even checked with the guardian's coverage of this 'new anonymous novichok™ victim'. mostly boilerplate save for the second paragraph of this:

'Counter-terrorism officers have also contacted a small number of people whose blood samples were taken at the time of the attack to seek their permission for forensic testing, the Met said.
The Guardian disclosed last month that a number of paramedics present at the Salisbury incident have reported feeling ill. The Met refused to confirm whether paramedics were among those whose permission was being sought for testing.'

the bolded phrase is a hyperlink that led to:

Revealed: anti-nerve agent drug was used for first time in UK to save novichok victim ; Drug saved Charlie Rowley, ambulance service reveals, amid concern for long-term effects on paramedics, july 8, 2019

Paramedics saved the life of one of the Wiltshire novichok victims by administering an anti-nerve agent drug at the scene that had never been used on a patient before in the UK, it can be revealed.

The Guardian has also learned that a number of paramedics have reported feeling ill after being present at the Salisbury and Amesbury incidents.

One of the paramedics who had helped the former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter when they collapsed in Salisbury was among those who went to the aid of Charlie Rowley when he also fell critically ill four months later in Amesbury.

Instinct told him that a second nerve agent poisoning may have taken place and Rowley was given the drug. Speaking in detail for the first time about its role responding to the poisonings a year ago, South Western Ambulance Service NHS foundation trust (SWASFT) said it believed this saved Rowley’s life.'

defies belief, imo, but then i've long wondered if anything about this saga is so, including the fact that photos of yulia in the pub bear zero relation to her smiling red-haired ones post-hospital. and as craig murray says, why on earth were she and sergei able to walk from the pub to salisbury park to then collapse on the park bench, only to be discovered by 'the Chief Nurse of the British Army, who chanced to be walking past them on her way back from a birthday party. How lucky was that?'

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travelerxxx's picture

@wendy davis

How lucky was that?

About a million bazillion to one lucky, that's how lucky.

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wendy davis's picture

@travelerxxx

and i'd forgotten to ask you how you're enjoying your retirement, buster keaton.

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travelerxxx's picture

@wendy davis

Retirement is good so far. About to pass mile-marker 66, so getting ready to start with some of that SS cash.

Still, I spent most of my working years on the night shift, so getting routines adjusted is pretty crazy. Driving my poor wife nuts with my late hours.

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wendy davis's picture

appropriate closing song. g'night, sweet dreams, and don't let the gators bite.

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Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

How is it that nobody noticed for, uh, more than a year before finding deadly poison in the blood of a police officer?

This is starting to look like the British version of sniffing a backpack.

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Actually, the issue at stake is patriotism. You must return to your world and put an end to the Commies. All it takes are a few good men.
--Q

Exit polls not involving George W. Bush or Hillary Clinton tend to be quite accurate.
--Doug Hatlem

wendy davis's picture

@Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal

biological weapon on the planet, according to many. but i will say that the telegraph (at the top) had the most...reserved reporting:

'The Telegraph understands the male officer displayed signs at the time of the incident that indicated exposure to a very small amount of Novichok.
He received appropriate medical treatment at the time and returned to duties shortly afterwards.

A police spokesman told the Telegraph the officer was part of the initial response.
Forensic examination of the officer’s blood sample, taken in March 2018, has since been carried out by scientists at the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory.

The forensic test – which uses a different method to that used to assess the clinical effects of nerve agent poisoning – has now given detectives confirmation that traces of Novichok were present.'

lightbulb: and hadn't the metro police wrapped the skripal's house in plastic with the family pets inside...yet when they opened the plastic wrap...they were still alive? or am i makin' that up? i don't think so. and how does a spray or gel on the door knob migrate to just below the roof?

was it novichok at all? and what the hell was the 'anti-nerve agent drug' paramedics used to save charlie crowley in july of 2018; i swear i'd never read that, but there it is in neon letters.

i do remember b at moon of alabama wondering if it might not have been weaponized botulinum toxin, but i have no idea. i'm already too cross-eyed to read what other bio-weapons and nerve agents were tested at porton down.

lol to:

This is starting to look like the British version of sniffing a backpack.

or luke har-har-harding being able to tell russian emails by their uses of emojis. ; )

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wendy davis's picture

@wendy davis

having been alive, although the guinea pigs may have died from malnutrition. from oriental review, april 9, 2018:

"Remember that two dead guinea pigs and a black Persian cat in a critical condition were found in the ex-spy’s home. Then the cat was taken to the Porton Down chemical weapons lab (not to a veterinary clinic which would be more expected). In the laboratory, chemists made a weird diagnosis, which they described as a “distressed state”. The cat was euthanized. Its body, as well as those of the two guinea pigs, were immediately incinerated which was confirmed by the British government.

Shortly after the Russian Embassy in London posed the question on what happened to the animals that Sergey Skripal kept in his Salisbury house, the British side, first in an unnamed leak and then as a DEFRA comment, said that “when a vet was able to access the property, two guinea pigs had sadly died. A cat was also found in a distressed state and a decision was taken by a veterinary surgeon to euthanize the animal to alleviate its suffering”.

This is, however, the sort of answer that brings about still more questions. Regarding the dead guinea pigs and the malnourished cat, it is said unofficially that they were taken to the Porton Down facility and incinerated there. But it remains unclear if their remains were ever tested for toxic substances, which would constitute useful evidence, and if not, why such a decision was made.

The fact that the animals were locked inside the house for several days suggests that the police did not access the alleged crime scene, which would be very unusual for such a high profile investigation. Such treatment of pets is also hardly consistent with UK laws on animal cruelty and comes as a blatant disregard for Mr. Skripal’s rights as the owner and companion of the animals.

Overall, it is difficult to avoid the impression that the animals have been disposed of as an inconvenient piece of evidence. It is also to be noted that, according to Mr. Skripal’s niece Viktoria, there were 2 cats, not one, in the house – and the whereabouts of the second one is still unknown. (with a photo of yulia with a black cat)
..........................................................
It seems like the British side is trying to cover up the tracks and destroy all the evidence. In Hollywood movies, criminals act like this when a detective tells them their version is not valid. Draw your own conclusions.

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wendy davis's picture

but while i was at global research for the porton down expose, i looked at a few other op-eds underneath that one.

in this one, stephen lendman had deconstructed some of the official skripal affair narratives (some i’d never even read) on april 15, 2018 at global research. in part:

'According to the official UK narrative, Sergey and Yulia Skripal, along with police detective Nick Bailey, were poisoned by a deadly military-grade novichock nerve agent.
No antidote exists, no recovery possible. The official narrative failed to explain exposure causes death in minutes.
From March 4 to recent days, the Tory narrative changed several times, explained in a late March article as follows:

First it was claimed father and daughter Skripal were poisoned by a military-grade nerve agent while eating lunch at a Salisbury restaurant.

The narrative switched to Yulia unwittingly transporting the nerve agent planted in her luggage on her flight from Moscow to London.

The story then shifted to Skripal’s BMW, the deadly toxin smeared on its handle, suggesting he and Yulia were poisoned this way.

Next came the claim about the nerve agent perhaps in aerosolized form affecting them through the vehicle’s ventilation system.
The latest official version claims the alleged nerve agent was smeared on the front door of Skripal’s home.

If any of the above accounts were valid, the Skripals, Bailey and at least 38 reported others exposed to the same toxin would be dead – surely many others as well.
Yet a month later, no one died. Bailey recovered enough to be discharged from hospitalization. Yulia’s doctor said she improved markedly. Days earlier, Sergey was reported in stable condition.

The military-grade poisoning claim is a bald-faced lie, obvious to anyone following events and reports.

On Thursday, UK and other Western media said Yulia issued a public statement for the first time, indicating she’s recovering, still convalescing, adding she’s “glad to say (her) strength is growing daily.”

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