Garrick Alder has a piece in this issue detailing some of the history and foibles of the respective American and British Freedom of Information Acts. I found this a particularly interesting read because I am currently embroiled in a lengthy appeal to the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) in the UK. As a part of the research for my own previous Lobster article ‘The Western Union Clandestine Committee: Britain and the “Gladio” networks’, I had succeeded in 1 obtaining some documents from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO). Upon receipt of these papers, the first thing I noticed was that some of the information (a number of names) had been ‘redacted’ – blacked out, in other words. The covering letter that came with the released documents was vague, in that it merely stated that ‘some’ information was being withheld. This left me unsure as to exactly how much information was being denied to me. Was it solely the names on the documents I had received, or were there other papers?
Deception and distraction strategies relating to the John F Kennedy Assassination by Garrick Alder
This essay involves one of the most outrageous and intellectually toxic propositions of all time: the claim that intelligent extraterrestrials have not only visited Earth in modern history, but are continuing to do so, and that various governments – principally that of the USA – are concealing this knowledge from the general public. For the record, I do not believe any such thing. It has been amply demonstrated that stories about UFOs and extraterrestrials serve various intelligence bodies as a useful way of discrediting people or other organisations. It is this discrediting tactic that is the focus of the present work.
1: Flights from reason
In 1999, private detective Milo Speriglio published a document purporting to 1 indicate that Marilyn Monroe had been murdered because she knew too much about the cover-up of human contact with extraterrestrials. Mr Speriglio said that this document had been passed to him by UFOlogist Timothy Cooper, who in turn claims to have received it from a retired CIA counterintelligence officer.2 Mr Speriglio’s document is supposedly a CIA eavesdropper’s summary of a telephone call between popular columnist Dorothy Kilgallen and her friend Howard Rothberg, a Hollywood producer.3 ...
I remember subscribing to this and even once having a letter printed in it, nothing major if I remember just confirming a reference in bill clintons autobiography, and for some reason my name never got published which means that technically i once had an anonymous letter printed in a conspiracy magazine.
New update at Lobster including info on Trump, Bilderberg, Lockerbie, suspicious Russian deaths in the UK etc. A real gem though about former MI5 DG Stella Rimington. She wrote: My first job when I joined the service, I was responsible for the Devon and Cornwall branch of the Communist Party of Great Britain. I wonder if she has any dirt on Rynner?
Governing from the Skies: a Global History of Aerial Bombardment by Thomas Hippler London: Verso, 2017, £11.99, p/b
Review by John Newsinger
The first use of aerial bombardment took place on 1 November 1911 in Libya. An Italian airman, Giulio Gavotti, dropped a hand-held bomb onto an Arab encampment and supposedly ‘revolutionized warfare’. This was an inevitable revolution, but Gavotti has the dubious honour of having led the way. As Thomas Hippler points out, a hundred years later almost to the day, Libya was once again being bombed, this time by NATO, but still with Italian participation. In the intervening hundred years, we have seen aerial bombardment go from being primarily used as a way of policing/punishing ‘native’ populations in the colonies, to being unleashed as a strategic weapon on a horrific scale by the British and Americans against civilian populations in the Second World War. This culminated in the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. And since 1945, we have seen aerial bombardment regularly used in both roles, sometimes in the same conflict, for example in Vietnam where the United States both bombed an insurgent peasantry in the South and the country supporting that insurgency, North Vietnam.
Governing from the Skies is at its most interesting when actually focussing on the military history of aerial bombardment. His discussion of the early days of air policing, using aerial bombardment to put down rebellion and insurgency, is well done. As early as 1909, in his Airships in Peace and War, R P Hearne was advocating that airships be used to ‘strike terror into the tribes’. They could be used ‘to pour shells into points unreachable by any other means’, ending within days campaigns that might otherwise drag on for months. Such bombardment ‘will create the most terrifying effect on savage races, and the awful wastage of life occasioned to white troops by such expeditionary work would be avoided, whilst the cost would be considerably reduced’. The fact that such bombardment would inevitably kill noncombatants was more than compensated by the reduction in troop casualties and the comparative cheapness of the use of air power. And this seemed to be borne out by the post-World War 1 experience. ...
Hoodwinked by the Department of Health? Frank Dobson and the 1997 Jimmy Savile report
by Garrick Alder
This is a continuation of ‘A Jimmy Savile sex scandal concealed during the 1997 General Election’ in Lobster 73.1
What happened to the external management review of Broadmoor high security hospital that Health Secretary Stephen Dorrell had commissioned, once the Conservative Party had left office? The report was sent to his office in April 1997, shortly before the Conservatives lost power at that year’s General Election. The report, including the reference to the 1995 police investigation of Savile’s sex offence, then landed on the figurative desk of the Rt Hon Frank Dobson, MP for the London constituency of Holborn and St Pancras South. Mr Dobson was Tony Blair’s first Secretary of State for Health from May 1997 to October 1999.
Since his retirement at the General Election of 2015, Mr Dobson, now 77, has lost a significant amount of weight. This, he cheerfully volunteers, is the result of re-adjusting to regular mealtimes rather than having to grab quick snacks during a long working day. But he retains his signature ‘Father Christmas’ appearance. Old habits die hard, however: he takes his cappuccino with a chocolate dusting: ‘It's not a real cappuccino without chocolate.’ 2
He is blunt about his time in Cabinet, referring to the Civil Service as ‘the machine’. He found it obstructive, laborious, and occasionally malicious. ...
Given that the ex-Broadmoor employee, Mr Allen, named the paedophile colleague to the interviewer (who notes that he is witholding that name) and insisted that he was arrested and convicted, why did the author not confirm this through the media and public records?
I may be wrong, but Princess Diana using the phrase, 'That guy...' does not ring true.
Whatdotheyknow.com is a site devoted to Freedom Information requests in this country. On it Josh Hastings is recorded as having made some FOIA 1 requests to various bodies for material held on Hilda Murrell. The only 2 response that yielded anything was from West Mercia Police, the force that handled the original investigation into the case. The document he received is 3 what should be a fairly standard police report into an investigation, along the lines of ‘the crime was reported at such-and-such a time’ and ‘Detective Constable Smith interviewed the witness and obtained the important information that…’ etc. However, about 90% of the first two pages of the document Mr Hastings received are entirely redacted, as are parts of the other seven pages. ...