Dec 01 2006

Polonium Traced To Russian Nuclear Plant

Major Update: Russia is denying UK media reports that the reactor site in question could be the source of the Polonium since the site doesn’t produce Polonium (but does produce Plutonium). It would seem maybe that tracing is not as good as first perceived. – end update

Knowing how dodgy the reporting has been on the Litvinenko incident I present this with caution, but this news is not surprising and could tie up the entire picture:

The killers must have had access to the laboratories, indicating a level of state involvement, according to intelligence sources. Reports say the source of the polonium 210 has now been traced by British scientists working at the Atomic Weapons Establishment at Aldermaston to a nuclear power plant in Russia.

Aldermaston scientists have been following the trail left by the polonium at 10 sites across London and on three British Airways planes that had been used between London and Moscow.

A lot of people will want to jump the gun and assume this means Putin and assassination, but the other theory still hanging out there under the radar is Litvinenko came into contact with contraband nuclear material and accidentally contaminated his person and ingested the poison – killing himself accidentally. If Litvinenko was involved in a black market effort with nuclear material with Berezovskyand others their prime source would be Russian. Berezovsky sat on Russia’s version of the National Security Council and knew details about Russia’s nuclear infrastructure. Ex KGB agents like Litvinenko (and others) might be the perfect army to use in such a clandestine business. Want to know how easy it is to set up a black market for nuclear material from Russia? Just read this and try and stay calm.

I go back to one of my original theories when I heard a PR firm was brought in and created all those deathbed pictures of Litvinenko, and how the charge of a Putin assassination effort only came out after Litvinenko died – not before (even though the deathbed statement was made four days before he died). The timing of these events seemed staged. It seemed that the Putin blame came as a last ditch diversion, after Litvinenko succumbed. There was a chance he would survive – so there was no reason to pull the Putin card before hand. So why would that be?

Well, if this is a blackmarket effort which became accidentally exposed then these folks would know where the material was coming from. And so they would know to point the diversion to Russia and to Putin. Some of these people have taken up arms against Putin – so dying for the cause once death is inevitable is not a huge stretch. So if the plan was to hold off pointing to Russia until there was no avoiding an autopsy and finding the source, then the timing makes sense. If Litvinenko thought he was a target of an assassin, why did his statement only come out after he died?

The reason this will work to resolve what happened is there is a source associated with this reactor who will either be tied to Putin or to Berezovsky/Litvinenko. Authorities are one step closer to solving the puzzle.

12 responses so far

12 Responses to “Polonium Traced To Russian Nuclear Plant”

  1. Lizarde1 says:

    AJS – brilliant theory. Work accident – and if it wasn’t blackmail it was something even more sinister….

  2. clarice says:

    C’mon. Not only will they be able to tell where it was produced, they will be able to tell which day it was produced.If you read the Telegraph story I posted last night it indicates that the stuff in the Millenium Hotel room which Litvinenko never visited was extensive. Seems the courier/assassins spilled the stuff all over the floor . Litvinenko, according to that scenario, met those guys in the bar in the morning and then left. That would mean he may have been poisoned earlier than the Sushi bar BTW.

  3. clarice says:

    I thought your theory was wet the first time you raised it and find it even more unlikely now.

  4. AJStrata says:

    Oh well Clarice, the idea someone is trying to smuggle nuclear material into London for a possible attack seems more plausible than Putin whacking a no-name like Litvinenko. To each their own.

  5. AJStrata says:

    Clarice, all the reporting has them meeting in the bar in the PM. If you have been to the UK you know their hotel bars are not open in the mornings. And if they did cont

    Now are you asking me if Litvinenko GAVE them material which contaminated them? Of course that is possible. I have no problem with Lugovoi being part of the smuggling effort (as opposed to the assassination effort).

    The fact the urinal in the bar showed doses means Litvinenko’s contamination (or whoever pissed in the urinal) happened at least 2 hours earlier. You cannot dodge the science on this one.

  6. Lizarde1 says:

    also Clarissa if you read the Russians own account published yesterday and posted by me written by a Russian reporter in London below you will see that Lugovoy claims they met at 4 or so for 20 minutes and he even brought his kid in….the afternoon is the MOST likely – one could argue that maybe Lugovoy who got the stuff from Litvinenko was smuggling the stuff back to Russia to do in Putin!

  7. Lizarde1 says:

    YIKES – now what?
    LONDON (Reuters) – British scientists probing the death of former Russian spy Alexander Litvinenko said on Friday a second man had been poisoned by radiation.

    Media reports said the man was Mario Scaramella, an Italian contact whom Litvinenko met at a London sushi restaurant on November 1, the same day he fell ill.

    “We are confirming that one further person who was in direct contact with Mr. Litvinenko has been found to have a significant quantity of polonium 210 in their body. This is being investigated further in hospital,” a spokesman for the Health Protection Agency said.

  8. clarice says:

    Well, edwardjayepstein who is a great analyst says that your theory is one of the two possibilities AJ:
    “, is a fascinating take on this most astounding of stories.

    Mr. Epstein figures there are two possible ways Litvinenko got poisoned. One is that he was murdered when “someone surreptitiously sprinkled particles of Polonium 210 in his food.” The second hypothesis is that it was an accident, in which “the particles leaked out of a faulty container of Polonium 210 that he (or his associates) were carrying.”

    Mr. Epstein reckons that “a former KGB agent might have a interest in obtaining a smuggled sample of Polonium 210 for a host of reasons, including arranging a sale to an intermediary, establishing the bona fides of someone claiming to have access to a Russian nuclear facility, or investigating the international black market in nuke components.” He writes that according to Mario Scaramella, an Italian defense consultant who had lunch with Litvinenko at the Itsu Sushi buffet the day he was poisoned, ” Litvinenko’s past interests, included the ‘smuggling of nuclear material out of Russia’ for the KGB. If true, the possibility that Litvinenko had a vial of Polonium 210 in his possession cannot be precluded.”

    With any damaged container, Mr. Epstein writes, particles can leak onto clothes,”such as a sleeve or handkerchief, and be ingested. The accident hypothesis would further account the radiation spreading it to multiple locations.” He concludes by noting that at this point, “both the murder and accident hypothesis are equally nefarious — and viable.” What struck us about the point, aside from the fact that Mr. Epstein is one of the shrewdest analysts around, is that as he begins to sketch the case, this mystery is not merely one of those British crimes we all love to read about in Agatha Christie or Conan Doyle but a situation in real life that provides a window into why the stakes in the Middle East are so high.”

    Now that it appears Scaramella also has ingested polonium, the Sushi bar contamination is clearer.

  9. the good doctor says:

    He is not a no name. Just like the writer in Moscow he was just one of many disidents investigating the Putin goverment’s involvement in the Chechian masacre. He was important because he was on the trail of the Moscow writer assasins and had the $$ backup- connections to follow the trail. Putin is not in the clear at all.

  10. Barbara says:

    I don’t know. It seems Litvinenko had accused Putin of everything bad that happened in Russia, apartment bombings, Beslan school tragedy, Moscow theater and on and on. How credible was Litvinenko? Would anyone pay any attention to anything he said. After all, his book denigating Putin failed miserably. And if Putin wanted to get rid of dissident ex-KGB agents, he would have an enormous task on his hands. There must be thousands. I am not saying that Putin was not capable of doing all this because he certainly is, but I don’t think it would have been in his interest to do so. Although I guess if we wanted to look at botched poisonings look at the Yushenko mess. Who was actually responsible for that one.

  11. the good doctor says:

    Putin is an old KGB hand and used to the old USSR. They are still upset that they are no longer a super power. He is trying little by little to return to the totalitarian system. Anyone in a megalomaniac’s mind is a threat . Just heard that Russia is thinking about the recent sales of weapons to Iran. If they US and the UK catch him killing this guy they will use the threat of exposing him to cancel the weapons sale as well as any nuclear equipment. Keep an eye open.

  12. 00de Forum says:

    Polonium im Flugzeug…

    Bei den Ermittlungen der britischen Polizei wurden nun auch an Bord von zwei British-Airways-Passagierflugzeugen Spuren einer radioaktiven Substanz entdeckt (Polonium 210)…

    British Airways erkl……