Tag Archives: Patrick Wintour

The Sleeping Watchdog

Patrick Wintour, the Guardian’s diplomatic editor is giving us merely a few hours ago [update: yesterday 13 minutes before an idiot with a bulldozer went through the fiber optical cable] before the news on OPCW. So when we see “a special two-day session in late June in response to Britain’s call to hand the body new powers to attribute responsibility for chemical weapons attacks“, what does that mean? You see, the setting is not complex, it should be smooth sailing, but is it?

Let’s take a look at the evidence, most of it from the Guardian. I raised issues which started as early as March 2018 with ‘The Red flags‘ (at https://lawlordtobe.com/2018/03/27/the-red-flags/), we see no evidence on Russian handling, we see no evidence on the delivery, merely a rumour that ‘More than 130 people could have been exposed‘ (‘could’ being the operative word) and in the end, no fatalities, the target survived. Whilst a mere silenced 9mm solution from a person doing a favour for Russian businessman Sergey Yevgenyevich Naryshkin would have done the trick with no fuss at all. And in Russia, you can’t even perceive the line of Russians hoping to be owed a favour by Sergey Yevgenyevich Naryshkin. In addition, all these months later we still have not seen any conclusive evidence of ANY kind that it was a Russian state based event. Mere emotional speculations on ‘could’ ‘might be‘ as well as ‘expected‘. So where do we stand?

A little later in April, we see in the article ‘Evidence by candlelight‘ (at https://lawlordtobe.com/2018/04/04/evidence-by-candlelight/), the mere conclusion ‘Porton Down experts unable to verify precise source of novichok‘, so not only could the experts not determine the source (the delivery device), it also gives weight to the lack of evidence that it was a Russian thing. Now, I am not saying that it was NOT Russia, we merely cannot prove that it was. In addition, I was able to find several references to a Russian case involving Ivan Kivelidi and Leonard Rink in 1995, whilst the so called humongous expert named Vil Mirzayanov stated ““You need a very high-qualified professional scientist,” he continued. “Because it is dangerous stuff. Extremely dangerous. You can kill yourself. First of all you have to have a very good shield, a very particular container. And after that to weaponize it – weaponize it is impossible without high technical equipment. It’s impossible to imagine.”” I do not oppose that, because it sounds all reasonable and my extended brain cells on Chemical weapons have not been downloaded yet (I am still on my first coffee). Yet in all this the OPCW setting was in 2013: “Regarding new toxic chemicals not listed in the Annex on Chemicals but which may nevertheless pose a risk to the Convention, the SAB makes reference to “Novichoks”. The name “Novichok” is used in a publication of a former Soviet scientist who reported investigating a new class of nerve agents suitable for use as binary chemical weapons. The SAB states that it has insufficient information to comment on the existence or properties of “Novichoks”“, I can accept that the OPCW is not fully up to speed, yet the information from 1995, 16 years earlier was the setting: ““In 1995, a Russian banking magnate called Ivan Kivelidi and his secretary died from organ failure after being poisoned with a military grade toxin found on an office telephone. A closed trial found that his business partner had obtained the substance via intermediaries from an employee of a state chemical research institute known as GosNIIOKhT, which was involved in the development of Novichoks“, which we got from the Standard (at https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/crime/uk-russia-nerve-agent-attack-spy-poisoning-sergei-skripal-salisbury-accusations-evidence-explanation-a8258911.html), so when you realise these settings, we need to realise that the OPCW is flawed on a few levels. It is not the statement “the OPCW has found its methods under attack from Russia and other supporters of the Syrian regime“, the mere fact that we see in regarding of Novichoks implies that the OPCW is a little out of their depth, their own documentation implies this clearly (as seen in the previous blog articles), I attached one of them in the article ‘Something for the Silver Screen?‘ (at https://lawlordtobe.com/2018/03/17/something-for-the-silver-screen/), so a mere three months ago, there has been several documents all out in the open that gives light to a flawed OPCW, so even as we accept ‘chemist says non-state actor couldn’t carry out attack‘, the fact that it did not result in fatalities gives us that it actually might be a non-state action, it might not be an action by any ‘friend’ of Sergey Yevgenyevich Naryshkin or Igor Valentinovich Korobov. These people cannot smile, not even on their official photos. No sense of humour at all, and they tend to be the people who have a very non-complementary view on failure. So we are confronted not merely with the danger of Novichoks, or with the fact that it very likely in non-state hands. The fact that there is no defence, not the issue of the non-fatalities, but the fact that the source could not be determined, is the dangerous setting and even as we hold nothing against Porton Down, the 16 year gap shown by the OPCW implies that the experts relied on by places like Porton Down are not available, which changes the landscape by a lot and whilst many will wonder how that matters. That evidence could be seen as important when we reconsider the chemical attacks in Syria on 22nd August 2011, so not only did the US sit on their hands, it is now not entirely impossible that they did not have the skills at their disposal to get anything done. Even as a compound like Sarin is no longer really a mystery, the setting we saw then, gives us the other part. With the Associated Press giving us at the time “anonymous US intelligence officials as saying that the evidence presented in the report linking Assad to the attack was “not a slam dunk.”” Is one part, the fact that all the satellites looking there and there is no way to identify the actual culprit is an important part. You see we could accept that the Syrian government was behind this, but there is no evidence, no irrefutable fact was ever given. That implies that when it comes to delivery systems, there is a clear gap, not merely for Novichoks, making the entire setting a lot less useful. In this the website of the OPCW (at https://www.opcw.org/special-sections/syria-and-the-opcw/) is partial evidence. When we see “A total of 14 companies submitted bids to undertake this work and, following technical and commercial evaluation of the bids, the preferred bidders were announced on 14th February 2014. Contracts were signed with two companies – Ekokem Oy Ab from Finland, and Veolia Environmental Services Technical Solutions in the USA” in light of the timeline, implies that here was no real setting and one was implemented after Ghouta, I find that part debatable and not reassuring. In addition, the fact finding mission was not set up until 2014, this is an issue, because one should have been set up on the 23rd August 2011, even as nothing would have been available and the status would have been idle (for very valid reasons), the fact that the fact finding mission was not set up until 2014, gives light to even longer delays. In addition, we see a part that has no blame on the OPCW, the agreement “Decides further that the Secretariat shall: inspect not later than 30 days after the adoption of this decision, all facilities contained in the list referred to in paragraph 1(a) above;“, perfect legal (read: diplomacy driven) talk giving the user of those facilities 30 days to get rid of the evidence. Now, there is no blame on the OPCW in any way, yet were these places not monitored by satellites? Would the visibility of increased traffic and activities not given light to the possible culprit in this all? And when we look at the paragraph 1(a) part and we see: “the location of all of its chemical weapons, chemical weapons storage facilities, chemical weapons production facilities, including mixing and filling facilities, and chemical weapons research and development facilities, providing specific geographic coordinates;“, is there not the decent chance (if the Syrian government was involved, that ‘all locations‘ would be seen as ‘N-1‘, with the actual used fabrication location used conveniently missing from the list? #JustSaying

It seems to me that if this setting is to be more (professional is the wrong word) capable to be effective, a very different setting is required. You see, that setting becomes very astute when we realise that non-state actors are currently on the table, the danger that a lone wolf getting creative is every bit as important to the equation. the OPCW seems to be in a ‘after the fact‘ setting, whilst the intelligence community needs an expert that is supportive towards their own experts in a pro-active setting, not merely the data mining part, but the option to see flagged chemicals that could be part of a binary toxic setting, requires a different data scope and here we see the dangers when we realise that the ‘after the fact‘ setting with a 16 year gap missing the danger is something that is expensive and equally, useless would be the wrong word, but ‘effective’ it is not, too much evidence points at that. For that we need to see that their mission statement is to ‘implement the provisions of the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) in order to achieve the OPCW’s vision of a world that is free of chemical weapons and of the threat of their use‘, yet when we look at the CWC charter we see: ‘The Convention aims to eliminate an entire category of weapons of mass destruction by prohibiting the development, production, acquisition, stockpiling, retention, transfer or use of chemical weapons by States Parties. States Parties, in turn, must take the steps necessary to enforce that prohibition in respect of persons (natural or legal) within their jurisdiction‘, which requires a pro-active setting and that is definitely lacking from the OPCW, raising the issue whether their mandate is one of failure. That requires a very different scope, different budgets and above all a very different set of resources available to the OPCW, or whoever replaces the OPCW, because that part of the discussion is definitely not off the table for now. The Salisbury event and all the available data seems to point in that direction.

 

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Bitches of Technology

There are multiple issues in play, first there is the continuation of the previous part, which I will address here. The second is the article the Guardian published (at http://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/jan/25/uk-should-be-punished-if-it-leaves-european-union-to-deter-other-exits) titled ‘UK should be punished if it leaves EU to deter other exits, say former ministers‘.

My first response in regards to this would be “are you bitches out of your mind?” which sounds highly emotional and it is. You see, Brexit (and the possible upcoming Frexit) is a direct result of the people in charge of REFUSING to take action when they could, in addition, they decided to hide behind ‘Status Quo’ when they should have acted. In final addition, several acts of change have been pushed forward again for the good of big business, which makes me question their intent.

To illustrate this with evidence (which is always important), in my article ‘Dress rehearsal (part 1)‘ (at https://lawlordtobe.com/2015/07/01/dress-rehearsal-part-1/), which I published on July 1st 2015, I included the PDF at the end of the blog too ‘Withdrawal and expulsion from the EU and EMU some reflections‘. On page 33 we get “it is likely that some Member States would object to the introduction of a right of expulsion in the treaties, coupled with an amendment of Article 48 TEU to make that possible, since this would expose them to the risk of being forced out at some future date. Moreover, apart from it being politically almost inconceivable, forcing a Member State out of the EU or EMU would inevitably give rise to tremendous legal complexities. This, perhaps, explains why expulsion has not been, and may never be, provided for in the treaties“, as the members in charge of that piece of paper were already too deep in the mess on non-accountability, they actually set themselves up for a long fall, one the Greece instigated and even now, reflecting back on all the warnings I gave from 2013 onwards, none would have been considered. Now again in this paper we get on page 11 the text “The silence of Community primary law on the existence or otherwise of a legal right of withdrawal was, in any event, inconclusive, lending itself to two fundamentally opposed interpretations. One is that a right of unilateral withdrawal existed even in the absence of any explicit reference to it in the treaties, since sovereign States were, in any case, free to exercise their sovereign right to withdraw from their international commitments“, the text refers to P. Doehring and P. Hill where there seemed to be the case of favouring the theory that it reflects the hope of the drafters of dissuading Member States from withdrawing. That was nice in those days, but the interested parties of today have had enough of the utter irresponsible acts of other so called world leaders. In addition there is the expression ‘Sovereign power’, coming from ‘Sovereign States’ which has been defined as ‘power not subject to limitation by higher or coordinate power held over some territory’ this comes from N. MacCormick’s ‘Questioning Sovereignty‘.

So even after we saw the useless and toothless statements from some in the past regarding “throwing Greece out of the Euro and the EEC“, we see an even more toothless statement from several former ministers at this junction regarding the punishment for those leaving the Euro/EEC. It is given additional voice in the quote “We should not encourage other populist forces campaigning on exit such as National Front in France or Podemos in Spain. This is a very important consideration. This is in the interests of Europe that we do not encourage other EU countries to leave. The common interest of remaining members is to deter other exits. This should have an impact on the terms Britain gets”, words spoken by the former Polish deputy prime minister Leszek Balcerowicz. He is probably realising that his goose is cooked soon after Brexit and Frexit. Even though he looks ‘good’ on paper, 53% debt of GDP still comes to 236 billion dollars, in a nation with 38 million people. They are all panicking now, because the British referendum is not going good (read: the way they want it to go). If only someone had the balls to strongly intervene with Greece, and in better terms clean up legislation a long time ago, this mess would have been speculative at best. Now we see the texts that the writers want us to focus on, but in all this, in that same air, we see the ignored facts. Facts, that (as I see them), Patrick Wintour Diplomatic editor is not eager to inform his readers on.

The little part in all this is something that was mentioned twice, including the photo caption. You see, this is an exercise to debunk issues by the Open Europe Think-tank. You might notice some ‘fluffy’ facts, yet the truth is, is that these people are speaking whilst at their backs (read: they are the political shield) for players like Jardine Matheson Holdings (61 billion plus) and British Petroleum (358 billion plus), with a lot more then these two, we see that Open Europe is a shield for the bigger players, all behind a fluffy website (at http://openeurope.org.uk/). These groups are very dependent on keeping the EEC as is, the Status Quo to be, but the people all over Europe have had enough of this non-accountability from both politicians and large corporations. That is exactly why Le Pen and Farage are a worry to them. Even now we see (at http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2016/jan/25/northern-ireland-irish-republic-eu-referendum-enda-kenny) the first mentions that a referendum is not needed until the end of 2017. That stalling is exactly what Farage is hoping for, showing more vigour in this fight! We see that Reuters is giving us “To loud applause, Nigel Farage, the leader of the UK Independence Party, told a Grassroots Out campaign event that Europe’s policy of taking in migrants with few checks had endangered the lives of those living in the 28-member bloc“, with an additional “Farage was joined on the stage by Britain’s former defence secretary Liam Fox from Cameron’s ruling Conservative party who is also campaigning for an exit“, which is now a growing issue.

Now I need to get back to the previous article, even though this time it is not about the man or the victim, this is about data and data systems. you see, certain amendments were to be made in Serious Crime Bill (at the http://www.wired.co.uk/news/archive/2014-06/06/cybercrime-bill-life-sentence), Wired informed us regarding “there is no existing offence of owning manuals that offer advice on how to groom or abuse children sexually“, which might not help Breck Bednar and family any regarding the circumstances. In addition, the Serious Crime Act would in this case apply AFTER the damage is done, so no matter how many improvements, Breck Bednar ends up remaining terminally dead no matter what.

When we look at the Serious Crime Act of 2015, we see at section 3 we see ‘Unauthorised acts causing, or creating risk of, serious damage‘, but this is AFTER the fact and even then, many of the facilitating acts will remain unanswered. In my previous blog I got some comments on ‘the Nigerian prince‘ issue. They were fair enough, but in some of these parts we have two issues. We can go with the part that Breck Bednar got himself killed by not listening to his mother. Which to some extent makes sense, yet in the same light, we see that levels of facilitation remain unanswered in many ways.

Consider the following

  1. The administrator of a server service gets to intentionally misrepresent himself or herself. We have two issues, one, is that we already have issues of misrepresentation. The issue given is “He claimed to be a 17-year-old computer engineer running a multimillion pound company“, the fact that this misrepresentation comes with “he was invited into an online gaming group – a ‘virtual clubhouse’“, in the foundation there is no initial cause of imminent danger, but the danger could have been avoided in a few ways.
  2. What if such servers need to be openly registered and linked to a registered corporation or firm, which now gives us the issue that Lewis Daynes would have been better known, moreover, the police would have seen more red flags possibly intervening before Breck Bednar entered a state of being permanently dead. I will go one step further, what if, not unlike ‘Raising the bar’ in IP law (2013), we see, contemplate and try to adjust the validity and the accountability of the facilitator. Now we get that change!

You see, Lewis Daynes would have to answer several questions, logs would have been available for the police to investigate. That is the one step too many sides do not want to consider, because accountability in too many cases seem to deflate maximised profits, yet in all this, is that a valid train of thought for any government to consider?

  1. Consider that on February 17, 2014 Breck Bednar ended up dead, those facts had been in court for a while (he was convicted in January 2015), yet knowing that this issue was already playing we see (at https://www.nspcc.org.uk/fighting-for-childhood/news-opinion/flaw-law-online-grooming-legislation/). The headline ‘PM announces new online grooming offence‘ sounds nice, and there is forward movement, yet there is a massive gap in the prevention of grooming, which is not even correct in this case, when we consider the law. Most laws would have been able to use the path of facilitator, most social media will still be able to hold onto the defence of ‘innocent disseminator‘, yet, the action of Lewis Daynes do not allow for that. His continued interactions stop him from that path giving us an option to grant an additional level of protection to future victims, whilst not hindering business and profit as a whole, because the bulk of all social media is founded on interactions by users and facilitation by the system. Even in the most precise case of scripting, it is not towards ONE individual, it would be towards a spearheaded group of thousands. Breck Bednar would have been in an automated introduction amongst thousands and in this case there is safety in numbers, because the actions of Lewis Daynes would have raised many more flags, enough from barring him from a system he did not control and in his own system he is not the facilitator. It is the lack of many organisations (governments, corporations and legal parties) to dig into the option of setting safety parameters regarding ‘facilitation’.

As seen, there needs to be an additional circle of protection, which addresses the dangers of the ability for grooming. This is a hard issue to address and in light of any Brexit it could become a lot harder, if any law has to be addressed, than in light of all the changes the next 10 years will bring, a massive change to digital devices, for example, the new Huawei P9 will come (read: is rumoured to come) with 4GB RAM, 64GB ROM, 8MP front camera and 16MP back camera, and installed Android 6.0. It comes with a 64-bit processor that outperforms plenty of laptops.

Now we get back to part one, because the two are linked in cyberspace.

You see, the chance of Brexit which was 39% in November 2015 is now surpassing 48%, this means that there are a few issues coming forward, apart from the growing danger that UKIP seems to be. You see, this is not just a Nigel Farage thing. There is a rather massive jurisprudential lag in prosecuting economic crimes, especially economic cyber-crimes.

Some of the information can be found (at http://www.actionfraud.police.uk/news/british-crime-survey-reveals-extent-of-fraud-and-cyber-crime-in-sngland-and-wales-oct15). The article ‘British Crime Survey reveals extent of fraud and cyber crime in England and Wales‘ gives us “the cost of fraud to the UK economy estimated at £30 billion more needs to be done and more resources are needed to assist law enforcement to help victims of crime and prevent further victimisation“, which sounds nice in theory, but the foundation needed is stronger legislation.  Yet in all this, there is an issue with the article. The quote “This is new crime in our society and it brings new challenges for policing in prosecuting offenders and protecting victims. Notwithstanding the cuts to police budgets we must find ways of responding to the needs of victims of fraud. Alongside this policing response the UK needs to begin a prevention revolution to educate the public on how to stop hackers and fraudsters from taking our money“, which focusses on the money, just on the money, in all this there are other venues where there is an issue (perhaps the name Breck Bednar sounds familiar).

The issue is to deal with the facilitators without strangling true entrepreneurial options, which is what has been lacking both within the Commonwealth and outside of it. You see, the danger to the many sides of life through technology, including the children is growing on a near exponential level. First of all, the main issue is IPv6, it was essential to conceive this new technology for the mere reason that its predecessor has actually run out of options. With a mobile growth that seems to double on an annual base, the new phones won’t just have IPv6 (as the mobile industry started to adopt it since around 2009), the growth of IPv6 has doubled in the last 12 months. At http://betanews.com/2016/01/05/ipv6-adoption-nearly-doubles-in-a-year/ we see that usage went from just below 6% to well over 10%, falling just short of 84%, here I mean that over 10% of all traffic to websites is now IPv6. For the most, this cannot be clearly monitored, which means that with the next mobile iteration, we will see a growth unlike we have seen before. You see, Statista (at http://www.statista.com/statistics/263441/global-smartphone-shipments-forecast/) forecasts a sale of 1.4 billion phones in 2016. This would include the upcoming Huawei P9, the Apple iPhone 7, Google Nexus 6, HTC One M10, the Samsung Galaxy S7 and a few more. These phones will ship with up to 4GB RAM (in two cases 6GB is rumoured), several of them with 64GB internal storage.

This is a nightmare to the intelligence community, as well as the CPS and the DPP, yet I feel that for parents the worry should be bigger, a lot bigger. As social media gets more and more derived solutions, niche groups will be a consequence, which means that children like Breck Bednar could end up being an even larger target, because there is too much evidence at present that monitoring those groups will become technologically near impossible. IPv6 Now (at http://www.ipv6now.com.au/primers/IPv6SecurityIssues.php) shows us a few issues. The first quote is “With 18 billion billion addresses in a /64 subnet, sequential scanning is pointless. It would take 500,000 years to scan a single /64 at a million probes per second“, I will immediately admit that I left a little part out of it, so there are options, yet let’s see my reasoning.

That part is seen in the quote “In IPv4, multiple addresses are always possible, but rare. But in IPv6 they are very common, arising from SLAAC, temporary DHCPv6, link-local addresses, multiple prefixes, overlapping lifetimes, as well as IPv4 addresses. Admins must be aware of all possible interface addresses and the capacity of network devices to create their own addresses“, this implies that the admin is all on the up and up, but when we consider those with other agenda’s like Lewis Daynes and we see apps appearing that allow for a peer-2-peer approach, a system that piggybacks messages. At some point someone will miss out on checking, especially when they are distributed in other ways. Financial opportunists, organised crimes, schoolkids and monsters in the making a system that cannot be monitored in any way because governments ended up being too lax in a world where those in power requiring ‘space’ and not realising who else they were enabling, or perhaps they did know but did not care.

Now we are beyond running out of time, because of the Statista is even close to correct, the world could have an IPv6 based mobile server park (as well as a data cloud) that ends up being unmonitored. Now, I am not evangelising not allowing for these iterations, yet the need to adjust legislation that additional options exist to hold certain groups to account becomes an increasing essential need.

There is one final side that IPv6 Now gives us. The quote is part of auto configuration (which is too often way more dodgy than I care for) gives us “DHCPv6 (Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol) allows a server to supply addresses to hosts. DHCP in IPv4 needed external support, but in IPv6 it requires nothing but a working router for the connected host to be immediately reachable“, if we consider that any mobile phone is a router, how reachable will this modern host be and more important, what data could be gotten access to, especially in an unmonitored way?

At this point, we seem to become nothing less than the bitches of technology. I could state that there is a group that will try to align certain paths, but it is already too late for that. People, their lives and whatever they own is streamed on a near 24:7 foundation and in all this there remains a technological lack in the places that cannot afford not to have it. When we see the news on the ‘evolving’ systems fighting fraud and other creative (and sometimes graphical) activities, we see that the gap of our safety and our allowance for accepted acts is widening to the extent that everyone is an evolving target without any clear means of staying safe. There is support for that statement. It comes from the Czech Ministry of Education (at http://services.geant.net/cbp/Knowledge_Base/Network_Monitoring/Documents/gn3-na3-t4-cbpd132.pdf), now we will accept that this is a 2011 document, yet, this does not diminish the quote “IPv6 configured hosts on an IPv4 network can bypass defined security policy or hide their identity using temporary IPv6 addresses“, consider that in conjunction that many users (young and old) tend to use free Wi-Fi locations whenever possible, making monitoring an even lesser option. Now consider those places and the traffic that they could (unintentionally) offer through ‘temporary IPv6 addresses‘, so what safety is there?

Clearly we have become the bitch of technology and the law is falling behind more and more. The EEC has done too little and Brexit could go either way in protecting the people, but the danger here must be acknowledged, if ‘protection’ becomes too draconian it would not become protective and only drive away commerce, a mere lose-lose situation for everyone involved.

 

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