Foreign Affairs Committee Whistleblower is Newsnight Leaker

At 09:59 the Foreign Affairs Committee released new evidence from an FCDO whistleblower – Josie Stewart – who states it was “widespread ‘‘knowledge’ in the FCDO Crisis Centre that the decision on Nowzad’s Afghan staff came from the Prime Minister”. 

“I saw messages to this effect on Microsoft Teams, I heard it discussed in the Crisis Centre including by senior civil servants, and I was copied on numerous emails which clearly suggested this.”

“I was copied on an email from Nigel Casey stating that the National Security Adviser would seek input on the Nowzad case from Number 10.”

“Nigel Casey explicitly testified that he had searched his emails and found nothing of relevance, yet when I searched my emails for “PM” and “Nowzad” I found more than one email referencing “the PM’s decision on Nowzad” and with Nigel Casey in copy.”

All very interesting, if a bit historic at this point. While FAC MP members will no doubt want to pore over this testimony, they may also want to know something about Stewart. She was the Foreign Office leaker to BBC Newsnight…

In January, Newsnight editor Sima Kotecha reported having had sight of two emails with the subject heading “Pen Farthing & dogs”, showing the department and special representative Nigel Casey seeking guidance from No. 10 over the issues. Kotecha tweeted these uncropped screenshots on January 27th. Accidentally revealing the photos to have come from the inbox of one J Stewart – the same woman now seeking her time in the spotlight as a whistleblower… 

When the FCDO launched an investigation, Josie Stewart was reported to have denied responsibility for the leak, which we can now surmise was almost certainly the case. Guido didn’t run the story at the time over concerns about naming anonymous sources – even though she was the BBC’s source. Given Josie’s now gone on the record it’s worth reassessing this previous incident…

mdi-timer 21 March 2022 @ 11:37 21 Mar 2022 @ 11:37 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
READ IN FULL: Cummings Statement on Leak Accusations

Dom’s blog is back in action and not pulling any punches following last night’s No. 10 briefings against him. To sum up his claims:

  1. Whilst he possesses some WhatsApp messages between the PM and Dyson, he claims to have not found the ones leaked to the BBC. He is willing to have the Cabinet Secretary search through his phone to prove this.
  2. On who leaked the second lockdown plans: the Cabinet Secretary told the PM it couldn’t have been Cummings or Cain, and that all the evidence pointed to Henry Newman and others in that office. Cummings claims Boris then tried stopping the leak enquiry, as he couldn’t sack Newman owing to his close friendship with Carrie…
  3. On the No. 10 private flat refurbishment, Cummings claims Boris stopped speaking to him about it in 2020 as Cummings told him “plans to have donors secretly pay for the renovation were unethical, foolish, possibly illegal”
  4. He describes the PM and his office of “falling so far below the standards of competence and integrity the country deserves.”

He adds in a follow-up tweet: “Also everyone shd ignore all media claims to have quotes from ‘friends’, ‘allies’ — they’re all bullshit”…

Read Dom’s blog in full…

Read More

mdi-timer 23 April 2021 @ 16:58 23 Apr 2021 @ 16:58 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Shouldn’t ‘Chatty Rat’ Leak Investigation Be Concluded Before Another Leak Investigation Commences?

Downing Street has announced there will be a Cabinet Office internal inquiry into the Dyson texts leak to the BBC. They made clear the inquiry won’t cover the other leaks we’ve had recently. None of the so-called “chatty rat” leaks will be re-examined.

The probe will only look at texts “as related to this issue of Dyson”, not how messages between Boris and Saudi Arabia’s Mohammed bin Salman over an abortive bid for Newcastle United were also leaked. Nor has there been a public update on the leak inquiry (dating back to last October) hunting down the so-called “chatty rat” who leaked details of the second lockdown to friendly hacks. Arguably the former leak could have had diplomatic ramifications that impacted on national security, the latter leak during a pandemic is an equally serious matter. Why has there been no conclusion to the hunt for the “chatty rat”?

The working assumption in Westminster media circles is that Dominic Cummings was to blame for those leaks and Downing Street does not want to establish that fact officially because of the risk of blowback – who knows what Dom took with him in that box or on his phone? There might even have to be a messy prosecution under the Official Secrets Act. Better instead to let lying rats lie. Given Cummings was the prime source for so many of the Lobby’s most senior reporters you will not be surprised that this unproven, yet widely believed theory, goes largely unreported by them. The more paranoid even wonder if redthroat, Labour’s new Whitehall source of leaks, is providing cover for Dom. Which would be a three dimensional chess move that was well within the government’s OODA loop.

What would be the motive? Here things get a bit sketchy. Mere revenge for being kicked out seems a bit of a low rent motive. As part of a campaign to destabilise Boris before a triumphant return to Downing Street at the side of Prime Minister Gove? Gove surely has enough on his plate at the moment, with half of the Lobby currently trying to find out where he sleeps at night…

mdi-timer 22 April 2021 @ 16:25 22 Apr 2021 @ 16:25 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
LEAK: Labour Conference Security Crisis


Labour are at risk of having no security for their party conference, Guido can reveal. Leaked memos sent to General Secretary Iain McNicol reveal that the party’s HQ is even worried the police could cancel conference entirely. How has this clusterf**k happened?

Following the Labour NEC decision to boycott G4S last year, the party approached five security firms to bid for the 2016 conference contract. Three immediately declined the job. Of the remaining two, one announced that “following completion of a risk assessment, they wished to retract their bid.” This left Liverpool-based Showsec as the sole bidder. Which raised a major problem…

Showsec are embroiled in a furious row with the GMB union after the GMB accused them of preventing their workforce from unionising. The GMB have protested to Labour that Showsec are not a suitable conference security provider. This has created a crisis in Labour HQ, who have warned McNicol in desperation that the police could “stop conference taking place” unless a security provider is found:


“We are therefore in the very difficult position of having to appoint a potentially anti-union organisation to a high profile role at annual conference. We do not have other options to pursue and are under pressure from the Home Office to make an appointment very soon. It must be noted that should we be unable to appoint a security contractor it is within the power of the Home Office/police to stop conference taking place.”

How do HQ suggest tackling the dilemma? They have asked McNicol if there is “a possibility of the G4S decision being reversed”. So the choice for Labour: end the boycott of G4S, employ a union-busting contractor or risk the police shutting the entire conference down. The words piss up and brewery spring to mind…

mdi-timer 4 August 2016 @ 07:00 4 Aug 2016 @ 07:00 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments