PUTIN ON THE RITZ: The long awaited Russia Report is useless because it’s out of date, according to Priti Patel among others. Any delays caused by a government unwilling to release it are purely coincidental.
This is the latest attempt to deflect attention from the damning report. Nigel “Mr Irrelevant” Farage was crowing about the infamous referendum, just for a change from harassing migrants. “There was no evidence of Russian interference!” he shouted gleefully to anybody unlucky enough to be in range. “So we got away with it!”
One hopes that Mr Farage can rest a little easier these days, although he is clearly affected by an excess of bile.
Oh so Priti Patel took a different tack. “The report has gone out of date while we have been sitting on it,” she smirked. “We have since tightened up our procedures, so that there is less of a paper trail for the Intelligence and Security Committee to follow.”
To put the matter to bed, Boris Johnson has elevated Evgeny Lebedev to the House of Lords. The presence of a Russian newspaper mogul, whose father was a KGB agent, and who made a fortune from the collapse of the USSR, is entirely reassuring.
The temptation to draw a parallel between Lebedev and the vultures awaiting the collapse of the UK, if not the EU, is strong.
It is also tempting to deduce that powerful Russian interests are paying for Brexit, so they can clean up like Lebedev did. It is hard not to conclude that the same people are paying the government to ignore the evidence of interference, and to block the actions of the security services.
Indeed the Report makes this crystal clear. “The [REDACTED] paid for [REDACTED],” reads one ***-rated passage, unambiguously. “[REDACTED] used troll farms and bots to [REDACTED], and ensure that the referendum was [REDACTED].”
Julian Lewis, who was voted chair of the Committee in place of placemat Chris Grayling, published the Report, and had the whip removed as a reward. “[REDACTED]!!” was his pithy response.