Monday, November 27, 2006

People who live in glass houses....

Ah, state sanctioned assassinations. Most nations do it, but surprisingly only foreigners are ever (well almost) accused.

Take the case of British WMD inspector/analyst, David Kelly, who died right before the Iraq War began, and who had some knowledge about Iraqi WMDs. His death was ruled a suicide (no foul play at all, move along) and to think otherwise was considered treasonous.

Then consider the case of Alexander Litvinenko. He gets ill after eating sushi, and Russian state sanctioned poisoning is all over the headlines. Three weeks later, he dies, and suddenly Polonium-210, a very radioactive substance, is discovered. How this got missed the first few weeks of tests, I'll never know.

I don't have any first hand knowledge of either man's death. Mr. Litvinenko may well have been poisoned as the papers describe and Mr. Kelly may well have slit his own wrists, as the Hutton Report averred.

But, the degree to which innocence is assumed on the one hand and denied on the other may soon begin to create some backlash. Anglo dominance of the globe is waning, while Sino-Russian dominance is waxing. I wouldn't be surprised to see Russia's Putin respond to yet another question about Mr. Litvinenko with a question about Mr. Kelly.

Moreover, something smells fishy about both these deaths, and it ain't just the sushi. Games within games as Frank Herbert used to write in his Dune books.

People who live in glass houses, shouldn't throw stones. You just might dash the illusions of benevolence that had been so hard to impose.