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Tony Grist

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The Skripal Affair [Mar. 18th, 2018|09:50 am]
Tony Grist
I don't know whether the Russian state was behind the poisoning of Sergei Skripal and his daughter- but neither does anybody else. The Russian State is capable of this sort of thing (most states are)- but there's no solid evidence for supposing it was responsible for this particular outrage. Craig Murray in his blog and tweets offers reasons for entertaining doubts- and has been shouted at. 

Jeremy Corbyn got shouted at too for taking a similar line in the Commons.

When the shouting starts it becomes dangerous to ask for reason and moderation.

Why the enthusiasm for war with Russia? 

But, then again, why the enthusiasm for war with anybody? 

Actually, I think I know the answer to that one. War unites the tribe (and ours has been bitterly divided). It gets everybody up in the terraces shouting for the home team. It generates warmth and togetherness. A shared hatred is ever so cosy. 

Politicians love operating in this atmosphere. Being a war leader, they think, is a short cut to admiration and acclaim (remembering Churchill and Thatcher, forgetting Eden and Blair.) 

Thus far it's working for Theresa May-  for whom being in charge (sort of) at a time of shouting has won her the best reviews of her premiership. 

[User Picture]From: heleninwales
2018-03-18 01:38 pm (UTC)
I got shouted at on Facebook for suggesting that we ought to wait for definite evidence before condemning Putin. There are several possible alternative scenarios that would fit the very few facts that have so far been revealed. There is obviously a Russian connection, but it's a long stretch from that to saying that Putin's government ordered the assassination attempt.

I'm not saying that Putin didn't do it, of course, just that we can't yet prove that he did.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2018-03-18 04:39 pm (UTC)
Putin is a suspect in the case, but there are others.
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[User Picture]From: matrixmann
2018-03-18 01:58 pm (UTC)
I just think like, meanwhile, the mantra of "Russia did it!" is a common theme to distract from own lack of skills and sheer incompetence as administrators of the system that lays down the rules of society's working order.
'Cause, why the hell always calling for war with Russia? Why not some ridiculously small or unimportant country in the world? What is there to gain from it, all the while you have no functional army that could even get you that win?
An answer can be Russia's special status in the West: If anything went wrong, meaning "not according to the plan", then Russia's been the scapegoat to blame for more than half a century now. It's like relying on some well-known story to address something because everybody knows it and everybody believes it.
You already don't even need to say anything more anymore, as soon as "Russia" comes into the game, everyone's distrustful and thinks like "yep, they can only BE the ones who did it!". Why? Because more than half a century, the public was told they're to blame. Even if they can't have anything to do with shit. Still they're to blame.
That's why I'm saying... It distracts very well from one's own lack of skill and competence as an administration over anything. Because, literally, everyone gets started up on this by dragging this out of the dusty chest.
Mission fullfilled, people don't talk about anything else anymore - for a while...
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2018-03-18 04:47 pm (UTC)
Demonising Russia is a habit- and a fall-back position for politicians and journalists who grew up during the Cold War.

For the British government- which has made a terrible mess of Brexit (and most other things)- the Skripal case is an opportunity to look Churchillian.
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[User Picture]From: veronica_milvus
2018-03-22 08:08 pm (UTC)
Nobody wants war, but nobody wants to be in denial either. It seems that Corbyn and his ilk are far too ready to excuse Putin, when he's by far the likeliest candidate, and we don't know why.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2018-03-23 09:10 am (UTC)
Putin is the obvious candidate but not the only one- and the government and media have rushed to judgement. Corbyn has refused to be swept along in the hysteria- and has questioned the government's position- which is what the opposition in an adversarial system like ours is supposed to do.
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