When Russian intelligence sought to recruit British MPs

One evening in the 1960s a secretary who worked for an MP with a special interest in foreign policy attended a smart cocktail party in Mayfair. There she met a handsome, articulate East European who told her he was a diplomat based at the embassy.  Despite the Cold War, it was not unusual for the […]

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British warmongering is driving Europe towards catastrophe in Ukraine

Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky made an unexpected trip to Britain last week on a whistle-stop tour of European capitals, pleading for more powerful and longer-range weapons to use in his war against Russia.  What was hard to ignore once again was the extent to which the UK is playing an outsize role in Ukraine. Last […]

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U.S. leak: British spy planes dangerously close to Russia

British spy planes have flown more than a dozen surveillance missions over the Black Sea in support of Ukraine’s war effort since the autumn. At least three of the sorties triggered a Russian reaction that saw Kremlin jets come very close to the British aircraft, according to leaked US intelligence files. UK defence secretary Ben […]

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U.S. intel leak reveals 50 elite British troops in Ukraine

Rishi Sunak has secretly deployed dozens of special operations forces (SOF) in Ukraine without telling parliament, leaked US intelligence files appear to show. Britain had 50 SOF personnel in the war zone last month according to a slide marked “secret” and “not releasable to foreign nationals”. The UK contingent was the largest of any NATO […]

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Think-tanks are often quoted uncritically by the UK press. (Photo: Dan Kitwood / Getty)

How the UK media misinforms us about ‘counter-disinformation’ operations

The UK government has poured over £25m into private “counter-disinformation” organisations since January 2018 and four of these are directed by people linked to the British or US foreign policy establishment. Yet while publishing information deriving from these groups, much of it on the Ukraine war, media outlets are failing to inform their readers of […]

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US troops run from a fire which damaged depleted uranium stockpiles in Kuwait. (Photo: US army)

Exclusive: Depleted uranium accident file censored

Details of the worst case scenario for an accident involving containers full of depleted uranium shells have been pulled from the National Archives by government censors. The risk assessment’s removal from public view will add to concerns about the safety of Britain sending such a controversial weapon to Ukraine. Depleted uranium (DU) is a chemically […]

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UK Foreign Office gives millions to ‘counter-disinformation’ groups

The UK Foreign Office has poured at least £25m into the often shadowy “counter-disinformation” industry since January 2018, Declassified has found.  The true figure is likely to be much higher since the government has only published its spending data up to May 2022.  When asked why more recent data was not available, a Foreign Office […]

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Exclusive: UK ‘unaware’ of Russia firing depleted uranium in Ukraine

The controversy over Britain sending depleted uranium tank shells to Ukraine has deepened today after a minister admitted Russia might not have fired the same ammunition. Armed forces minister James Heappey told parliament: “The Ministry of Defence is unaware of any credible open-source reports of Russia using depleted uranium in Ukraine.” He made the statement […]

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‘Significant portion’ of £4.8bn UK lethal aid for Ukraine will remain secret

“A significant proportion of our lethal aid [for Ukraine] is procured overseas and for both operational and commercial reasons, the detail of these contracts will not be published,” the Ministry of Defence (MoD) has told parliament. The announcement raises suspicion that Britain is sending more controversial weaponry to Ukraine that it does not want made […]

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Exclusive: Army putting ‘outrageous spin’ on depleted uranium science

The Ministry of Defence claimed last week that research by the Royal Society – Britain’s premier scientific group – supported its controversial decision to send depleted uranium tank shells to Ukraine. An MoD official briefed the media: “Independent research by scientists from groups such as the Royal Society has assessed that any impact to personal […]

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Exclusive: Ukrainian soldiers seen with depleted uranium ammo in UK

Ukrainian soldiers have been filmed alongside depleted uranium ammunition that Britain is supplying to their country for the fight against Russia. The footage is contained in a documentary the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) released yesterday as Ukrainian tank crews completed their training. Britain is gifting 14 Challenger 2 tanks to Ukraine together with depleted […]

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Revealed: Boris Yeltsin privately supported NATO expansion in 1990’s

Boris Yeltsin privately stated he was not against NATO expansion in the 1990s while publicly opposing the military alliance, declassified files show.  This posture went back as far as 1993, two years into his presidency, which would last until 2000 when he appointed Vladimir Putin his successor.   Declassified notes from a meeting of the British […]

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Zelensky and Sunak meet in Ukraine. (Photo: Handout / Ukrainian Presidency)

Negotiation or nuclear war: The choice in Ukraine?

Vladimir Putin’s threat to use nuclear weapons if losing the war in Ukraine parallels NATO’s policy of “flexible response” that dates back to 1968, which similarly included a willingness to use nuclear weapons if losing a conventional war. That policy is not widely understood, yet was and remains a part of US and NATO nuclear […]

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What is MI5 hiding in its secret 60 year-old files?

Scores of MI5 files on two of the most sensational political and security scandals in the history of modern Britain – the Profumo affair and the Cambridge spy ring – were released at the National Archives on Tuesday.  But they are so heavily redacted that it is clear those that would cause the most damage […]

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British intelligence predicted Ukraine war 30 years ago

When British intelligence warned that Vladimir Putin was about to attack Ukraine earlier this year, the spooks’ foresight won many plaudits. Yet their prediction mirrored a scenario Whitehall had long known might unfold. In May 1992, just six months after the Soviet Union broke up, Britain’s then Prime Minister John Major was being briefed by […]

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Explainer: Britain’s proxy war on Russia

The Ukraine conflict is also a British one, given the extensive UK role in the war, with Whitehall supporting Kyiv to repel Russia’s brutal invasion in numerous ways outlined in this Explainer. However, UK governments do not go to war for moral or humanitarian purposes; only for strategic gain. In Ukraine, Whitehall’s main goal is […]

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Ukrainians strip a Russian tank near Kharkiv on 16 May 2022. (Photo: John Moore / Getty)

Does the Ukraine war mean Britain should increase military spending?

Last week Russia celebrated Victory Day, marking the end of the Great Patriotic War, its name for World War Two. Putin’s address made clear that, for him, Ukraine was a conflict between NATO and Russia which would continue until it was won. At the same time as the victory parade in Moscow, Britain’s defence secretary […]

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Liz Truss at the Lord Mayor’s Easter Banquet. (Photo: Dan Kitwood / Getty)

Dangerous ambiguity: UK policy towards Ukraine

For decades many in the West may look back in horrified wonder at the killings of men, women and children, the war crimes and the attacks on hospitals and schools in Ukraine. Was it avoidable? It should have been. Declassified has highlighted Vladimir Putin’s long standing threats over Ukraine and Russia’s special links to the […]

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Vladimir Putin visits Muammar Gadaffi in Libya, 2008. (Photo: Artyom Korotayev / Getty)

Russian mercenaries invited to Libya via Western security firm

Saif al-Islam Gaddafi paid an Australian special forces veteran to help organise the defence of Tripoli during Nato’s bombardment of Libya’s capital in 2011, a book reveals. John Gartner, director of Osprey Asset Management (OAM), claims he arranged for up to 150 South African and Russian mercenaries to support the North African dictator.  However, anti-Gaddafi […]

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Russian soldiers roll through the bombed city of Grozny after intense fighting in the Second Chechen War, 15 February 2000. (Photo: Antoine Gyori/Sygma via Getty Images)

When Tony Blair backed Putin’s brutal war

After Vladimir Putin became president of Russia in 2000, the number of export licences granted by the UK government for equipment with potential military use jumped 550% over six years, Declassified has found. At the time, Putin was waging a brutal war in the breakaway province of Chechnya in Russia’s North Caucasus, involving atrocities which […]

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Robert Dudley (left), then BP’s chief executive, meets with Vladimir Putin in 2011. (Photo: Kremlin)

Under Putin, MI6-linked BP extracted Russian oil worth £271 billion

Britain’s flagship petroleum corporation BP pumped more than 5.5 billion barrels of Russian oil during the rule of Vladimir Putin, after his regime approved BP’s purchase of a host of lucrative assets, Declassified has found.  The oil was pumped between 2002-20 and was worth in excess of £271 billion based on average prices during the […]

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A Vanguard-class submarine moored at Faslane (Photo: Phil Miller / DCUK)

Britain’s nuclear arsenal

Russian dictator Vladimir Putin has placed his nuclear forces on high alert and threatened Nato with “consequences they have never seen” if the West tries to stop his illegal invasion of Ukraine. The terrifying threat turned ‘nuclear war’ into one of the most googled terms on Monday morning and prompted rare reflection in the national […]

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There are now fears Putin could invade the rest of Donbas. (Photo: Aris Messinis / AFP via Getty)

As Russian troops cross the border, what’s next for Ukraine?

Vladimir Putin’s decision to recognise the rebel-held territories of Donetsk and Lugansk makes a diplomatic settlement with Ukraine much more difficult, even though its practical impact is to formalise existing Russian support for the rebels. It does not so far extend beyond the line of contact to take in the whole Donbas region which would […]

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Communication towers in Ukraine. Britain financed the installation of 16 radio transmitters in eastern Ukraine to broadcast to Russia-backed rebel regions. (Photo: Anton Petrus / Moment)

UK spends over £80m on media in 20 countries around Russia

The British government is spending tens of millions on media projects in Eastern Europe which are often presented as fighting “Russian disinformation”, but which may involve the UK’s own information operations

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