Former Russian Spy In Critical Condition After Exposure To "Unknown Substance"

A former Russian spy and a female companion are in critical condition after being exposed to an "unidentified substance" in Salisbury, England. 

Sergei Skripal, 66, and a 33-year-old woman were found unconscious on a bench at the Maltings shopping center on Sunday afternoon.

Eyewitness Freya Church told the BBC it looked like the two people had taken "something quite strong".

She said: "On the bench there was a couple, an older guy and a younger girl. She was sort of leant in on him, it looked like she had passed out maybe.

"He was doing some strange hand movements, looking up to the sky." -BBC

Col Skripal is a retired Russian military intelligence officer who was jailed by Russia in 2006 for spying for Britain. In 2010, he was one of four prisoners released by Moscow in exchange for 10 US spies - after which he flew to the UK.  Russia said the UK's MI6 paid Skripal $100,000 to expose the identities of Russian intelligence agents working undercover in Europe, which he had been supplying from the 1990s. 

Skripal and the female are both in intensive care at Salisbury District Hospital, while a hazmat team cleaned up the area where the couple were found.

Police arrived at Skripal's home in Salisbury on Sunday and have been there ever since, report neighbors.

"Because we are still at the very early stages of the investigation, we are unable to ascertain whether or not a crime has taken place," said Temporary Assistant Chief Constable Craig Holden. 

The incident has drawn comparisons to the 2006 poisoning of Alexander Litvinenko - another former Russian spy who had been feeding the UK intelligence. Litvinenko fell ill and was hospitalized after having been poisoned with Polonium-210 - one of the rarest elements on earth in its natural form, and lethal in very small doses. Litvinenko died 22 days later - but not before naming Putin as his killer. 

“You may succeed in silencing me, but that silence comes at a price,” Alexander Litvinenko said right before his death. “… The howl of protest from around the world will reverberate, Mr. Putin, in your ears for the rest of your life.”

 

They left a trail laced with polonium — a “path of breadcrumbs left by Hansel and Gretel,” said Ben Emmerson, a lawyer representing Litvinenko’s wife, according to the Guardian.

Those breadcrumbs showed radioactive polonium on the table and chairs where Litvinenko met with Andrei Lugovoi and Dmitry Kovtun, both of whom have been charged with murder. And it was all over the Russian KGB agents’ hotel rooms, as well as contaminating one’s hotel bathroom. -WaPo

Col. Skripal was convicted of "high treason in the form of espionage" by a Kremlin military court in August 2006, and was stripped of all titles and awards for passing classified state secrets to the British secret services. Skripal pleaded guilty and cooperated with investigators, according to reports. 

The question - if this was indeed an assassination attempt as many have suggested, and arguably one directed from the Kremlin - is why target Skripal now, and why do it in such a "glaringly" Russian way. The only thing missing was a Polonium or ricin-tipped umbrella found on the scene of the alleged crime.

Comments

Shemp 4 Victory newmacroman Mon, 03/05/2018 - 18:47 Permalink

How many times is ZH going to dredge up the discredited fable about Putin ordering Litvinenko's murder?

First, nobody heard Litvinenko's "deathbed confession" except Alexander Goldfarb, who had a grudge against Putin and who worked with other shady Russian exiles in London like Boris Berezovsky.

Litvinenko's wife changed her story. The 2007 version:

The widow of poisoned former Russian security officer Aleksandr Litvinenko has denied he worked for the British intelligence service MI6, a claim made by Russian businessman Andrey Lugovoy in Moscow last week.

The 2011 version:

The widow of former Russian FSB officer Aleksandr Litvinenko, who was murdered in London in 2006, admitted that her husband cooperated with the British intelligence services MI5 and MI6.

From Litvinenko's father in 2012:

The father of late Russian security officer Aleksandr Litvinenko says he pursued a smear campaign against the Russian government out of grief, but changed his mind after Aleksandr’s widow revealed his son had been working for British intelligence.

Litvinenko's father later told Scotland Yard who he thought was responsible:

“It was Berezovsky and Goldfarb. That’s it. Goldfarb knows all about atomic energy. How do you think Aleksandr was first infected with Polonium-210? Why do you think this case has been dragging for so long? Why has there been no court case? Because they don’t have anything, and if a real court case were to open, it will become apparent who was behind it!” the man said.

Boris Berezovsky is an exiled Russian tycoon, who was found guilty of embezzlement in Russia in an absentia trial. He is currently living in Britain, where he enjoys political asylum.

Berezovsky employed Litvinenko, who took part in numerous campaigns the billionaire waged against the Russian government.

Aleksandr Goldfarb is the head of Berezovsky’s Civil Liberties’ Fund. In the weeks prior and after Litvinenko’s death he took the role of an unofficial spokesman for the man, putting the blame for the crime on the Kremlin.

Lots of loose ends and unanswered questions about Litvinenko point to British intelligence and the Russian/Israeli mafia. Which is why Putin must be blamed.

https://www.rt.com/news/litvinenkos-widow-denies-british-intelligence-c…

https://www.rt.com/news/litvinenko-british-intelligence-lugovoy-979/

https://www.rt.com/news/litvinenko-father-regrets-slander-343/

https://www.rt.com/news/berezovsky-litvinenko-murder-allegations-662/

https://sputniknews.com/europe/201601211033486957-litvinenko-inquiry-un…

http://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2014/07/31/theresa-may-raises-an-…

Oh, and by the way, the ricin-tipped umbrella was a Bulgarian way, not a Russian way.

In reply to by newmacroman

veritas semper… PrivetHedge Mon, 03/05/2018 - 18:36 Permalink

   There are many things wrong with the "Putin did it" story. For one, there is no motive, even with Litvinenko being a critic of Russia, he was no threat whatsoever to Putin. The man worked with Chechen terrorists and the Israeli-Russian oligarchs. But assuming that there was a sufficient motive to kill him, think about this: Why would Russia use a very rare, very expensive, and easily traceable radioactive substance to kill him instead of some cheap poison or just shooting him? Why risk smuggling radioactive material into the UK which is an act of war?

  The main thing it is that ANY radioactive substance is  traceable to its point of origin.

  There is one country which has not signed the nuclear non proliferation treaty and whose radioactive material can nto be traced ,you guessed it:IS>>>RA>>>EL

  Alexander Litvinenko who was formerly FSB fled to the UK to avoid court prosecution in Russia, worked for a shady Russian oligarch, Boris Berezovsky. Boris Berezovsky just so happens to be the Israeli-Russian oligarch who lived in London after fleeing the Russian judicial system for a multitude of crimes too long to list. He was on Interpol's most wanted list. Here is the grand prize. After the US and UK press branded Putin with the poisoning despite there being Zero evidence, (something the US is very well known for now) investigators were tracking down the traces of Polonium in the UK. They detected traces of Polonium at Berezovsky's office and residence! Now I do not know about you, but in my place of work, and certainly in my house, I do not have rare radioactive substances. Polonium is not something you just get at the market or pick up by accident walking through the park.

   No experienced mob boss like Berezovsky would be dumb enough to murder an underling in such a manner either. Therefore his death was an accident. It was mostly likely it was a botched smuggling operation. Why was he moving such a dangerous substance? Did he need fast cash? Were they planning to create a dirty bomb? Such a "smoky bomb" would turn the Polonium into powder and kill anyone who ingested it.

Traces of Polonium were found on the planes that Litvinenko had been on. So I think we can deduce what happened. He was a mule. The questions remain, why did he have it?, Where did he get it? What was he going to do with it? Why was it in the offices of Berezovsky and Erinsys Ltd (Britain's Blackwater)?

  And here comes the best part:
Litvinenko was in Israel, where he met Leonid Nevzlin the CEO of Yukos shortly before he died. If you wanted to buy/steal radioactive material that would be the place. What was he negotiating with Nevzlin? We learned Alexander had been an informant in a case that led to the arrest of nine Georgian and Russian Mobsters in Spain, including Alexander Gofstein a lawyer for Yukos who apparently was laundering money.

You can read the whole story here . https://www.sott.net/article/310728-Litvinenko-wasnt-poisoned-by-Putin-…

A good account here too.http://thesaker.is/the-litvinenko-inquiry-londons-absurd-show-trial/

Litvinenko's father said that Berezovsky killed his son.

 

In reply to by PrivetHedge

Shemp 4 Victory veritas semper… Mon, 03/05/2018 - 21:42 Permalink

Excellent summary.

If this Sergei Skripal guy was deliberately poisoned, then it was most likely MI6/MI5/CIA behind it. That's how they treat their assets. They live as long as their value alive is greater than their value dead. The last example that comes to mind is Nemtsov.

Navalny is in the same boat. In Russia he's a nobody, a gnat, an ankle-biter, but the Western media paint him as some valiant and courageous "opposition leader". He'll be exploited until he's no longer useful and then he will meet an untimely demise which will be blamed on Putin.

In reply to by veritas semper…

veritas semper… Shemp 4 Victory Mon, 03/05/2018 - 23:02 Permalink

Funny that you mention Nemtsov and Navalny,bc I have the same opinion about those. Isn't it sad that there are so many useful idiots that don't realize what they are? Because their power rely mostly on using these idiots to advance their agenda.

There is something else important:you noticed this gravitates around YUKOS.

There were ,recently ,many here advancing the idea that Mr. Putin is a "closet" zionist

And I asked this question,to which I still do not have any answer. Repost(asking Bobeore,CTacitus) :

 " Bobeore,CTacitus ,can you elaborate more on the YUKOS case? You know the one later named Rosneft? The one that Khodorkovsky ,the  zionist owner of YUKOS ,was about to sell to ROTHSCHILD,the zionist banker owner of the W Financial system,but was prevented by Mr. Putin,by NATIONALIZING it?

Khodorkovsky went to jail for embezzlement and tax evasions.

Can you explain to me(I deal in facts) why didn't Mr. Putin and his men ,let THE CHIEF ZIONIST Rothschild have YUKOS? It would have simplified things greatly, wouldn't it?

This is one question for now."

 

In reply to by Shemp 4 Victory

CRM114 Mon, 03/05/2018 - 17:28 Permalink

The British military Radiation and Chemical Warfare Center is just down the road, so they will have had experts on scene pretty rapidly.

Latest local rumor is that it's fentanyl, or some derivative thereof. They had to decontaminate A&E and cancel hospital appointments.

 

The local police and medical personnel are on the ball, I used to know a few.

 

Link to local paper - they are quite good too

http://www.salisburyjournal.co.uk/

flyonmywall Mon, 03/05/2018 - 17:29 Permalink

Polonium does tend to do a number on people.

That's what happens when you cross Putin. No retirement, no book deal, no Congressional testimony and no interviews.

Good luck with that whole pissing off Russia thing, Mueller.