In the events which happened I got my prediction wrong. The Green Party beat Reform into fourth place. However getting the first three right wasn’t bad! The BBC and the left in general are suggesting that the Lib Dem victory signalled a shift to the left. They couldn’t be more wrong. Very few North Shropshire Tories seem to have switched to the Lib Dems. The Lib Dems won because fed-up Tories stayed at home, sending a powerful message to Prime Minister Boris Johnson.
His house-trained government has derailed the economic recovery by imposing pointless and self-defeating tax rises and absurd green levies. He’s fallen as completely as Adolf Hitler for the global warming hoax, although in fairness at least he hasn’t invaded Russia without packing his winter woollies. He backed down on much-needed reforms to the system of investigating MPs, sacrificing a much-loved local MP, Owen Paterson, to a witch-hunt orchestrated from the Cabinet Office. I doubt that anyone from the Tory Party even tried to defend poor old Owen, a lovely man with respect, during their lacklustre campaign.
To cap it all Number 10 organised parties during a lockdown, concealed the fact then lied about it. All the while NHS patients were dying because the Cabinet Office ordered the state-controlled NHS to withhold life-saving medicines like Hydroxychloroquine, Ivermectin and Remdesivir, even after the PM’s own life was saved by Remdesivir.
Still our idiot government, no offense intended, allowed officials’ tails to wag ministerial dogs, preferring a further lockdown to using effective treatments. On the day before the by-election the Chief Medical Officer, Professor Chris Whitty, tried to impose a lockdown by stealth, cutting the ground from under the PM, who was standing at another podium only a few feet away.
Whitty effectively ended the Tories’ chances of winning North Shropshire. Having entered the political arena at such a sensitive time in favour of the Liberal Democrats he is now fair game for the Tories. The incoming government should dismiss him forthwith. His behaviour on Wednesday was a disgrace, no offense intended. (Please don’t write in and advise me how to spell ‘offense’ in English English – I know how, but this is an American website!)
Unsurprisingly Whitty was slapped down by a sensible junior minister, Joy Morrissey MP, on Friday morning, in a highly effective Tweet. She happens by the way to have been born in the lovely state of Indiana and is tipped for great things. She could even become the first British Cabinet Minister to have been educated at Worthington Christian High School, of Franklin County Ohio.
Ms Morrissey’s Tweet had to be withdrawn later in the day under pressure from Number 10, but by then the damage had been done. Number 10 scarcely did its reputation for candor any favors by describing Whitty as a “highly respected public servant”, which with respect is absurd. The Number 10 statement was presumably dictated in the Cabinet Office, possibly even by Der Kabinettratsführer, Simon ‘von’ Case, himself.
Case is off the case
In another intriguing development, ‘von’ Case was forced off the Christmas party investigation after it turned out that he had been doing a spot of partying himself. Whitehall was then sent into shock when the name of the new investigator was announced – none other than Sue Gray.
This is the same Sue Gray who is suspected, with respect, of being the Cabinet Office official who, acting on the instructions of the late Sir Jeremy Heywood, ordered Barry Burton at the Ministry of Defence to wipe the recording of my intelligence briefing for the Secretary of State on the SS-N-19 thermonuclear warhead the DVD inserted into East London in 2012. Burton was also ordered to destroy the contemporaneous note of my briefing and substitute a version which could be used to support a prosecution.
Whilst Heywood was very properly put to death on the orders of Higher Authority, using a bio-weapon kindly supplied by Porton Down, Sue was exiled to Northern Ireland. I don’t think that anyone sensible is saying that she was involved in the planned regicide of Queen Elizabeth II, the crime for which Heywood was sentenced to death. However, she may have cooperated with the MI5 investigation into Heywood and S, the top German spy in the UK, whose plan it was, and who also told Heywood to order my wrongful arrest.
S and I have been oppos for years, by the way. We’ve never met, although we had a mutual friend in the late Commodore Brian English, the brilliant British treble-agent who penetrated GO2 for MI5, whose strictly unofficial handler I was. (Brian incidentally knew Admiral Canaris and Frau Canaris, whom he liked, and met Adolf Hitler and Heinrich Himmler, indeed he was the only man I ever knew whom Heinrich tried to recruit for the SD.)
When you’re handling a master-spy like Brian you don’t treat him the way a rozzer treats a snout. You show him the respect he deserves as someone at the very top of his profession and, what is more, the most difficult and dangerous profession of them all. You listen rather than talk. Brian never liked talking about his hits, but Heinrich was one of them. (His suicide pill was handed back to him, ever so politely.) Not many people can claim to have knocked off an SS-Reichsführer!
He also knocked off Mussolini, but that’s another story. (The deal with the partisans was that they shot up the body to disguise the entry wound from Brian’s .22.) He was the inspiration for the Colonel Turner character in Where Eagles Dare, one of Admiral Canaris’s favorite movies, not that the scriptwriters were given the full story.
They probably thought that the idea of a British double-agent penetrating the German High Command was fiction.
S knows that I want him executed, nicely of course, after a fair trial. I know in turn that he wants me assassinated, but is nervous of the retribution. (He’s not stupid and doesn’t want to meet some boys with Glocks in a dark alley one night.) He also knows that we’ve got someone inside the Cabinet Office. (That was good work – we’ve been trying to get someone in there for years!) I am not blowing the gaffe, by the way – the Bad Guys know that too much high-grade intel is coming out of 70 Whitehall for it not to have been penetrated by British Intelligence.
Sue Gray is now the Second Permanent Secretary at the Cabinet Office. Is she making a bid for the top job, I wonder, in which case she could become the first witch to actually conduct a witch-hunt, no offense intended? Or is she willing to go along with the plan to have a retired three-star admiral take over and rotate the post amongst the three Services, thereby bringing the Cabinet Office firmly under British control? Is a peaceful handover being organised, or do the boys at Number 70 want to die in a last, futile stand against the SAS, with the survivors being taken to MI5 safehouses for sustained interrogation, using enhanced techniques where appropriate?
Amusingly, Sue was formerly Director-General, Propriety and Ethics at the Cabinet Office. As a job-title, with every respect, this is in stiff competition for the silliest job-title of all time with the Director of Diversity and Equality at the Nazi Party, the Head of Internal Affairs at the Gestapo, the Director of Impartiality at the BBC and the Head of Comedy in the Workers’ Party of Korea.
The second most effective minister in the government (after Priti Patel, the Home Secretary), Lord Frost, resigned on Saturday evening, citing concerns over the government’s failure to implement Brexit properly and the pointless ‘Plan B’ Covid restrictions. Frosty’s a heavy hitter. His letter apparently went in last Monday, helping to explain the government’s abject surrender to the EU over the European Court of Justice violating British sovereignty by ruling on cases from Northern Ireland.
That won’t last long of course. The Northern Ireland Protocol isn’t binding on the UK, as Frosty knows full well with respect, and will go when the new government comes in, assuming that the Tories don’t go mad and elect a house-trained idiot like Rishi Sunak, no offense intended, or an anti-Russian Remainer like Liz Truss, the Foreign Secretary, again no offense intended. The Tories would be better off asking the Official Monster Raving Loony Party if they could borrow their Leader, Howling Laud Hope, who incidentally beat a number of the other loony candidates on Thursday.
Boris’s own resignation can’t be far away. There probably won’t need to be a formal vote of no confidence. Some nice people from the Executive of the 1922 Committee will pop round to Number 10 to explain that the game’s up. Hopefully they’ll be offered a drink, but please, no more parties! The crucial thing is to force out the organ-grinder (i.e. the Cabinet Secretary) as well as the monkey. The last thing we need is another monkey as PM, no offense to Boris intended.
It’s important, if you’re an historian, to keep up to date with your reading. Sadly Takuma Melber (Pearl Harbor: Japan’s Attack and America’s Entry Into World War II, Polity Press, 2021) hasn’t. Like all historians who haven’t read Spyhunter he struggles to explain why Germany declared war on the United States on December 11th 1941.
The answer is simple: German Kriegsmarine pilots from the cancelled carrier Graf Zeppelin’s air group were involved in the attack and Hitler thought that several had been shot down. That’s why the Japs never released close-up photos of the pilots taking off, by the way. They weren’t all Japanese.
As I explained in my column Fleet Problem XIX in September the attack was planned by the top German asset in the US Navy, Admiral Ernest ‘von’ King. If you don’t know that the attack was planned in the States and involved German aircrew you can’t understand either Pearl Harbor or Hitler’s action on 11th December, fully supported incidentally by Foreign Minister von Ribbentrop.
I gather that there were strong rumors in the States after the attack that planes with swastikas had been seen over Pearl Harbor.
There is no way that the Japs would have allowed German aircrew to paint swastikas on their planes. However could the rumors have been started by the sight of dead Europeans in shot down Japanese aircraft?
Wing Commander Lance Wade DSO DFC and two bars
In addition to seeing the 80th anniversary of the Axis attack on Pearl Harbor this month has seen the 80th anniversary of a great aerial exploit by that fine Texan fighter ace, Wing Commander Lance Wade, who bagged no fewer than 25 community partners before being tragically killed in a flying accident in Italy in 1944.
As Adrian Stewart (Hurricane, reissued 2021 by Canelo) relates, on December 5th 1941 Pilot Officer Wade, as he then was, was flying in a Hurricane with 33 Squadron, Western Desert Air Force, when he shot down a Savoia Marchetti SM79 trimotor. He got so close to the enemy bomber that his fighter was caught in the blast as she blew up. The Hurricane, a strong aircraft, stayed together long enough to allow Wade to get her on the carpet. Sergeant Wooler bravely landed beside him to effect a rescue, but damaged his machine in doing so.
Both men then walked 25 miles across the desert in blazing heat, with limited water supplies, before reaching the Eighth Army’s forward positions. It is 77 years since Lance Wade was killed, but his service is not forgotten in this country.
I am sometimes thought of as being anti-German, although I can’t think why. Stewart relates a charming incident from the early days of the war, on November 23rd 1939. Some of the chaps from 1 Squadron bagged a Dornier 17 over northern France. The pilot bailed out and was then entertained by 1 Squadron in their mess.
I entirely approve. If you bag a Jerry in a Dornier and he bales out of course you should have him round for dinner. It would be discourteous to do otherwise. War is no excuse for discourtesy.
Sibghat Kadri QC (1937 – 2021)
I was sorry to learn this week of the passing of my old friend Sibghat Kadri QC. A fine lawyer, he won his first case at the Old Bailey whilst still a pupil! As it happens, I’ve known his pupil-master, Lord Gifford QC, for many years. Indeed I also knew his head of chambers, the late John Platts-Mills QC, doing my ‘second six’ in his fine set at Cloisters.
Co-founder of the Society of Black Lawyers, Sibghat was a fighter, who wasn’t afraid of standing up to judges. Indeed he played a part in forcing that lovely man Lord Denning’s early retirement as Master of the Rolls in 1982. Tom had made some injudicious comments in a book about jury selection in a case Sibghat defended in Bristol.
In point of fact, under the law as it then was, Sibghat was fully entitled to use peremptory challenges in an effort to get a racially balanced jury. The whole point of peremptory challenges was that you didn’t need to give a reason. Around the same time Sibghat was involved in a memorable exchange with Lord Dunboyne, a nice man, who used to sit at the Inner London Sessions. Sibghat thought the learned judge was a racist, which may have put the matter too highly, with respect.
A great character, Sibghat took a broad view of the Muslim ban on alcohol and was occasionally to be found imbibing at the Witness Box, a well-known Temple watering hole. He will be sorely missed.
Merry Christmas one and all! I’ll be taking a Christmas break and plan to be back with all y’all on January 8th 2022. No doubt I’ll find space to comment on the with respect musical comedy proceedings in Judge Alison Nathan’s court in New York. I don’t envisage any juror reading my weekly columns but you never know, especially if the Agency have got someone on the jury!
Michael Shrimpton was a barrister from his call to the Bar in London in 1983 until being disbarred in 2019 over a fraudulently obtained conviction. He is a specialist in National Security and Constitutional Law, Strategic Intelligence and Counter-terrorism. He is a former Adjunct Professor of Intelligence Studies at the American Military University.