Congratulating Colonel Lang on the 10,000,000 page views this blog has attained, Ishmael Zecariah described it as 'one of the few venues where "truth and honor" still have meaning.'
When, more than nine years ago now, the Colonel initiated this blog, he wrote that he would 'tell the truth as it is given to me to know the truth.' As one of the 'old lags' who has been reading and commenting on SST since those early days, I have always hoped that among its audience would be people in the U.S. intelligence community – and perhaps indeed the British – for whom the concepts of 'truth and honor' do still have a great deal of meaning.
The presence of honest and competent analysts in the U.S. intelligence community was readily apparent at the time when both our countries were lied into the catastrophic invasion of Iraq – in part because such people were 'stabbed in the back' by MI6 and the British Joint Intelligence Committee's endorsement of the claim that Saddam Hussein had sought uranium from Niger.
Subsequently, however, such analysts succeeded in frustrating attempts to misrepresent the Iranian nuclear programme so as inveigle us into another disastrous war. And while the JIC were quite happy to collaborate in attempts to lure both our countries into an attack on Syria, honest and competent analysts at the British defence science laboratory at Porton Down, if Seymour Hersh's account is to be believed, supplied their colleagues in the Defense Intelligence Agency with the evidence which enabled General Dempsey to frustrate the attempt.
For some time, the veteran journalist Robert Parry has been suggesting that what U.S. intelligence analysts know about the shooting down of the Malaysian flight MH17 on 17 July does not mesh with official claims that there is unambiguous evidence that the insurgent forces were responsible.
Yesterday, he claimed that U.S. intelligence analysts now believe that the atrocity was likely to have been the result of a deliberate attempt by extremists in the new regime in Kiev to shoot down a Russian plane.
It was at 7 pm (GMT) on this day one hundred years ago, a little after the time at which I am posting this, that, following the German invasion of Belgium, the British Government delivered the ultimatum which led to its declaration of war four hours later. Some reflections on 'truth and honor', on the claims and counter-claims about MH17, and on Europe's rush to catastrophic war a century ago may be timely.