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It seems traces of the nerve agent have been found in the restaurant where the Russians ate. 

I found it rather weird to watch the army taking away covered ambulances and police cars. (And how does anyone do anything useful in a hazmat suit for heaven's sake?!)

It's all both bizarre and sinister at the same time.

However, I do find it ludicrous that certain MPs are apparently putting pressure on Theresa May to publicly blame Putin and his cronies before the police investigation has even ended.  Unless that's fake news via Sky and the BBC.  Either way people need to get a grip.  

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Assassinating people who Putin sees are traitors or people who speak out against him seems to happen often in Putin's Russia. He would probably bring back the hammer and sickle flag if he could.

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On 3/7/2018 at 9:02 PM, Bob8 said:

There is a tendency to see Russia as the baddie.  I do not agree with that.  But Russia is next to a huge power block that are reasonably unified and unfriendly.  If we were in such a position, we would try to sow discord, so I find it reasonable to assume that they would too.

Bit of a difference between sowing discord and indiscriminately using banned chemical weapons in a foreign country in a way which affects hundreds of civilians with no connection to Russia. Whether or not is was officially sanctioned is unclear, and I suppose there is the possibility of a false flag operation, but this goes way beyond funding opposition groups, corrupting politicians & officials, attacking IT infrastructure, testing defences by incursions into airspace/patrolled waters and/or fake news & dodgy dealings on social media.

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On 3/11/2018 at 8:13 PM, Saintslass said:

I do like this (from the Sunday Times, I believe):

DX_v0uVW0AAit7t.jpg:large

They said today on the news that theTories have received over 800,000 pounds in donations from Russians living in the UK since May became PM and some are friends of Putin. 

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2 hours ago, The Future is League said:

They said today on the news that theTories have received over 800,000 pounds in donations from Russians living in the UK since May became PM and some are friends of Putin. 

I think there has to be a difference between 'russians' and putins government/friends/dodgy people.  There will be plenty of russians domiciled in the UK with no links to Putin who can donate to whomever they want.  

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6 minutes ago, Bedford Roughyed said:

I think there has to be a difference between 'russians' and putins government/friends/dodgy people.  There will be plenty of russians domiciled in the UK with no links to Putin who can donate to whomever they want.  

Quite. People who looted the country’s silverware following the breakup of the USSR and fled to the U.K. and Europe with their Ill-gotten gains once the party was over.

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3 hours ago, JonM said:

Bit of a difference between sowing discord and indiscriminately using banned chemical weapons in a foreign country in a way which affects hundreds of civilians with no connection to Russia. Whether or not is was officially sanctioned is unclear, and I suppose there is the possibility of a false flag operation, but this goes way beyond funding opposition groups, corrupting politicians & officials, attacking IT infrastructure, testing defences by incursions into airspace/patrolled waters and/or fake news & dodgy dealings on social media.

It was more a counter-argument to the assertion that Russia was not meddling.  It was to say that I would expect it to meddle, the rights and wrongs of that action are another matter.

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32 minutes ago, walter sobchak said:

Quite. People who looted the country’s silverware following the breakup of the USSR and fled to the U.K. and Europe with their Ill-gotten gains once the party was over.

As opposed to the people who looted the country following the breakup of the USSR and stayed there to run the place?

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2 minutes ago, JonM said:

As opposed to the people who looted the country following the breakup of the USSR and stayed there to run the place?

No doubt there are corrupt people in the Russian government since the breakup of the Soviet Union just like corrupt politicians in the US, UK, Italy, France and China etc but compare and contrast the Russia under Yeltsin and the Russia under putin/medvedev.

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6 minutes ago, walter sobchak said:

No doubt there are corrupt people in the Russian government since the breakup of the Soviet Union just like corrupt politicians in the US, UK, Italy, France and China etc but compare and contrast the Russia under Yeltsin and the Russia under putin/medvedev.

Its hard to compare when journalists and opposing political party leaders have a habit of dying in unfortunate circumstances. 

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5 hours ago, The Future is League said:

They said today on the news that theTories have received over 800,000 pounds in donations from Russians living in the UK since May became PM and some are friends of Putin. 

All perfectly legal although I'd rather they hadn't given what has just happened.  It's not a good look.  

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3 hours ago, walter sobchak said:

No doubt there are corrupt people in the Russian government since the breakup of the Soviet Union just like corrupt politicians in the US, UK, Italy, France and China etc but compare and contrast the Russia under Yeltsin and the Russia under putin/medvedev.

I don't recall chemical weapons being used against civilians in the UK under Yeltsin. Or under Stalin, Andropov or Chernenko come to that. Putin is on a par with Kim Jong Il & family, AFAICT. .

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43 minutes ago, JonM said:

I don't recall chemical weapons being used against civilians in the UK under Yeltsin. Or under Stalin, Andropov or Chernenko come to that. Putin is on a par with Kim Jong Il & family, AFAICT. .

I question the comparison with Stalin. 

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Questions asked in parliament about the broadcast license of the Kremlin-funded TV station Russia Today.

Walter may need to start a petition to save it a.s.a.p. or he'll have nothing to watch.

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11 hours ago, Futtocks said:

Questions asked in parliament about the broadcast license of the Kremlin-funded TV station Russia Today.

Walter may need to start a petition to save it a.s.a.p. or he'll have nothing to watch.

WS will be fine; he watches the Russian version from his St Petersburg flat anyway... 😉

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On the one hand, from a purely objective point of view I can see why Russia would act in this way.

1) they don't half seem to hold a grudge.

2) internationally they are at odds with the west still and are keen to stir the pot in these areas.

3) Putin has an election coming up and everyone hates russia fits his narrative.

 

HOWEVER

This was effectively a terrorist attack on British sovereign territory by a foreign state. If this could be escalated to nato level it should. Frankly Putin needs taking down a peg or two having been able to do what he wants in Syria, Georgia and lets not forget Ukraine. Russian jets and navy vessels are repeatedly having to be escorted out of Nato waters and the Baltics have repeatedly been threatened. Plus the alleged interferences in elections. To me if they want to play that game then fine but we should with our allies fight fire with our own equivalent fire - though of course not by exposing 500 civilians to a nerve agent in a restaurant.

Should we call Putins bluff in Ukraine for example and support the Ukrainian govt militarily and remove the "rebels" Russia has "nothing to do with"? 

Personally, I think that the time for pussyfooting around Putin needs to end sooner rather than later, does anyone think his "re-election" this month will make a difference?

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Unless the US / NATO backs us up we are pretty much powerless.

I see the press are suggesting we pull out of the World Cup. While this would save us from 3 weeks of the usual torment and embarrassment, would Russia really care? No-one will back us up on even this.

Do we not also get a lot of our energy supply from Russia?

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29 minutes ago, tim2 said:

Unless the US / NATO backs us up we are pretty much powerless.

I see the press are suggesting we pull out of the World Cup. While this would save us from 3 weeks of the usual torment and embarrassment, would Russia really care? No-one will back us up on even this.

Do we not also get a lot of our energy supply from Russia?

I doubt economically we could afford to risk even threatening to pull out of the World Cup, let alone go through and do it.

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47 minutes ago, Tommygilf said:

On the one hand, from a purely objective point of view I can see why Russia would act in this way.

1) they don't half seem to hold a grudge.

2) internationally they are at odds with the west still and are keen to stir the pot in these areas.

3) Putin has an election coming up and everyone hates russia fits his narrative.

 

HOWEVER

This was effectively a terrorist attack on British sovereign territory by a foreign state. If this could be escalated to nato level it should. Frankly Putin needs taking down a peg or two having been able to do what he wants in Syria, Georgia and lets not forget Ukraine. Russian jets and navy vessels are repeatedly having to be escorted out of Nato waters and the Baltics have repeatedly been threatened. Plus the alleged interferences in elections. To me if they want to play that game then fine but we should with our allies fight fire with our own equivalent fire - though of course not by exposing 500 civilians to a nerve agent in a restaurant.

Should we call Putins bluff in Ukraine for example and support the Ukrainian govt militarily and remove the "rebels" Russia has "nothing to do with"? 

Personally, I think that the time for pussyfooting around Putin needs to end sooner rather than later, does anyone think his "re-election" this month will make a difference?

I watched Death of Stalin.

It was amusing but not really based on real life to any great extent.  To us, used to such things, it is unimportant.  To those used to Russia, it would be the UK state insulting Russia.  

Then you have pro-Western Russians, who to a Putin mindset must have swallowed Western propaganda.  Why would he not act the same?

This is not justification, but motive.

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and in an interesting move Tillerson, who condemned Russia and supported the UK last night has now been sacked by Trump.

:-0

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Russia needn't even consider the UK.

Any kind of tub thumping by us would have us swatted away like an errant child in the 60s.

All they'd need to do is turn the taps off.

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3 minutes ago, Robin Evans said:

Russia needn't even consider the UK.

You say that but clearly the UK bugs Putin or else why murder/attempt to murder former spies on our patch (has he done the same to those in the US?), wind us up by flying/sailing close to our waters, etc.  If he 'needn't even consider the UK' then he is curiously obsessed by us.

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A poll released today apparently has 52% of people supporting the idea of the UK teams boycotting the world cup.  (Perhaps this is a defensive move - better to look like we're making a statement than watch our teams get hammered!)

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