The Skripal poisoning: What lies behind UK-US ultimatums against Russia?

 

The Skripal poisoning: What lies behind UK-US ultimatums against Russia?

14 March 2018

In little over a week since the mysterious poisoning of former Russian intelligence agent and British spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in Salisbury, Britain, on March 4, a campaign has emerged in ruling circles of the NATO alliance to pin blame for the poisoning on Moscow. Backed by top officials in Washington and in Europe, the British government is using this poisoning to concoct accusations against Russia with the most far-reaching implications.

On Monday, Prime Minister Theresa May issued an ultimatum, which expired at midnight today, declaring that absent a “credible response” from Moscow, her government will conclude there has been “an unlawful use of force by the Russian State against the United Kingdom.” During the parliamentary debate May was urged to invoke Article 4 of the NATO treaty, forcing the alliance to confer if the “territorial integrity, political independence or security of any [NATO member state] is threatened.”

These are issues over which states go to war, and top NATO officials are clearly putting together a case for war with Russia, a major nuclear-armed power. Yesterday, as May prepared to return to Parliament today with proposals for action, reports emerged in international media that ruling circles in London are discussing also invoking Article 5 of the NATO treaty. This article compels all NATO countries to “assist” any NATO member state that says it has been attacked to take “such action as it deems necessary, including the use of armed force.”

Faced with such drastic threats raising the danger of nuclear war, one must ask: what is the basis of the allegations that it was Moscow that poisoned Skripal and his daughter, who are now…

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