Regular and/or chance readers of this organ may remember that yesterday I blogged on the modern era’s spectacular and systematic destruction of the hegemony of what might be termed ‘old style media’ and its replacement with a kaleidoscopic infinite variety of means of social communication and an obsession with intimate life-sharing over the internet.
As a direct result, people generally tend to be more and more cynical about what the media pumps out and – ironically – they give more and more credence than ever before to the more eccentric and weird bloggers and purveyors of supposed truths, to the point where some of us just don’t know whom to believe anymore.
In one section of my post I discussed the phenomenon of ‘fake news’, pointing out that – when one actually thinks about it – just about every account of record of any historical or current event, however well-respected the author or indeed august the organ of dissemination, must have sprung originally to one degree or another from somebody’s personal subjective viewpoint.
Impartiality will always an unquantifiable concept – a thing of aspiration, never a guarantee.
One might even suggest that one man’s truth is another man’s poison or lie. And perhaps also that the extent to which the public believe ‘your’ truth – rather than anyone other’s – is the only or ultimate measuring-stick.
It’s perhaps no longer a case of what matters being (as Bill Clinton memorably said during the 1992 US Presidential campaign) “The economy, stupid!” but “It’s the poll result, stupid!” – and these days, of course, the end justifies the means more than it ever did.
In concluding my piece yesterday I commented upon those I have met who are convinced that the ‘conventional wisdom’ of the narrative put out in the British and Western media in the Skripal poisoning case in Salisbury is nothing but a smorgasbord of invention by British intelligence deliberately designed to discredit President Putin and the Russian nation.
I then linked readers to a piece in The Independent suggesting/reporting that the real identities of the Russian gentlemen who were recorded on CCTV all around Salisbury on the dates in question – and who claimed in a now ‘infamous’ interview on Russian TV that they were nothing more than ordinary citizens who had travelled there for no other reason than to see the local Cathedral’s famous 123-metre tower and clock – were known.
My purpose today is to provide an update by mentioning to those who care that yesterday from about lunchtime BBC News was broadcasting a story – which still being tagged as ‘unconfirmed’ overnight on BBC Radio Five Live’s Up All Night hosted by Rhod Sharp – that the online investigative websites Bellingcat and Insider are giving the real name of the man calling himself Ruslan Boshirov being in fact Colonel Anatoliv Chepiga, a 39-year old highly-decorated Russian special forces veteran.
I’m the last person to chant “I told you so” – and it is not my intention to do so here. I’m simply pointing out that these latest revelations will present a bit of a problem those conspiracy theorists maintaining that it’s all a plot by British intelligence.
See here for Vikram Dodd’s report on the these as featured today upon the website of – THE GUARDIAN
Not to worry though. I’m sure that before long the conspiracy theorists will have worked out some sort of convoluted explanation as to how and why these developments do not detract at all from their supposed ‘British intelligence did it’ truth …