With Input from Christopher Steele, Parliament Committee Orders Boris Johnson To Wage War on Russia
July 21, 2020 (EIRNS)—The British Parliament’s Intelligence and Security Committee (ISC) yesterday posted a heavily-redacted report on its website, denouncing Russia’s alleged “meddling” in U.K. elections—minimally the 2016 Brexit vote and the 2014 referendum on Scottish independence—and skewers Prime Minister Boris Johnson for failing to take action to counter this Russian interference. As with Russiagate against President Donald Trump, the same crew has mobilized to prevent Prime Minister Johnson’s turn toward an FDR-style “New Deal,” and to force him into a military confrontation with Russia and China. Every British daily covering the report repeats pretty much the same line, that having failed to act on Russian threats, Johnson should now join the offensive against Russia, while Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has been barking orders to him on how he should deal with China, a message he repeated again today in his visit to London.
The accusation from the report, which Sky News called “scathing” and “staggering,” is that Johnson, and Theresa May before him, but particularly Johnson, “turned a blind eye” for a long time to Russian meddling in the 2016 Brexit vote, and never even tasked MI5, MI6 and GCHQ to investigate the matter. Johnson in fact, prevented publication of the ISC report, originally prepared in October 2019, saying its publication would interfere in last year’s elections. The report is said to include a laundry list of Russian crimes, such as espionage and “targeted assassinations”—i.e., the Skripal affair—and warns that after the U.S. and NATO, the U.K. is Russia’s prime target, because it is “central to the Western anti-Russian lobby.” So, why didn’t the government act? The report admits that while it would be “difficult—if not impossible—to prove” allegations that Russia sought to influence the Brexit referendum, nonetheless it was clear that the government “was slow to recognize the existence of the threat.”
One need only look at the “independent” intelligence experts who contributed to the report to understand its intent. These include Christopher “dodgy dossier” Steele, longtime anti-Russia British intelligence agent Bill Browder, and three Integrity Initiative operatives Anne Applebaum, Christopher Donnelly, and British “security expert” Edward Lucas. Politico observes that the report’s authors gave special thanks to Steele for volunteering his “substantial expertise on Russia, which provided us with an invaluable foundation for the classified evidence sessions.” This is all the more incredible given that President Donald Trump has just called for his extradition and trial for Steele’s role in the attempted coup against the government of the U.S.
The Guardian can hardly contain itself in asserting that the ISC report “broadly reflects the expert view of Christopher Steele, the former MI6 spy. Steele gave evidence to the ISC in 2018. He said Johnson, as foreign secretary, and Theresa May ‘threw a blanket’ over indications the Russians had pushed for Brexit, and may have covertly funded it. They put Tory party politics above national security, Steele alleges.” The Guardian raves that the intelligence services had abundant evidence of Russia attempting to influence the 2014 Scottish referendum, of everything that Russia did in the U.S., hacking the DNC computer and supporting Trump against Clinton they had all this, yet did nothing! And no Russian “threat assessment” was carried out before the 2016 EU vote, the ISC says. The referendum was therefore left “unprotected.”
The report’s conclusions are also telling, as reported by the Guardian. It suggests that the government may want to emulate the U.S. law that prohibits foreign agents from operating in the U.S. without registering with the Department of Justice, under the Foreign Agents Registration Act. “We have not been provided with any post-referendum assessment of Russian attempts at interference,” the committee found. “This situation is in stark contrast to the U.S. handling of allegations of Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, where an intelligence community assessment was produced within two months of the vote, with an unclassified summary being made public.”
That assessment, of course, has now been irrefutably refuted, as the international press conference with former NSA technical director Bill Binney on July 23, who provided that proof, will confirm.