The Intelligence & Security Committee has published its annual report today. Among other things it’s been looking into the impact of Brexit on intelligence sharing, which they’ve concluded is zero. Directors of SIS, GCHQ, MI5, and Defence Intelligence have given evidence to the committee to point out that, despite Brexit, UK intelligence sharing is getting along just fine. Spooks generally prefer bilateral or trilateral co-operation, and they acknowledge EU member states would be shooting themselves in the foot if they gave up access to the UK’s high-quality intel. So much for Cameron’s weak referendum warning that we could end up like Iceland – going cap in hand to the EU for intel with no success…
The Chief of SIS said:
“I can honestly put my hand on my heart and say it hasn’t made any difference to us post-Brexit … heads of EU services have made a point of lining up and saying to me that they are determined to maintain the relationship”.
GCHQ’s director went further to say:
“We’re doing more with European countries now than we were at the point of referendum”.
The committee adds the number of terrorist attacks have been unaffected by Brexit as well. Live and let leave…
Christine Lee, a Chinese solicitor accused of spying on Westminster on behalf of the Chinese Communist Party, is now suing MI5 for “attacking” her reputation and undermining her human rights by publicly naming her as a saboteur. She is seeking unspecified damages in the Investigatory Powers Tribunal, after British intelligence chiefs claimed in 2022 she was performing “political interference activities” for the Chinese government. Her son worked for Labour MP Barry Gardiner, who also pocketed around £500,000 courtesy of Lee’s generosity…
Lee’s lawyer claimed today the accusations were false, and his client is not a communist spy at all:
“There has been a serious and public attack on (Lee’s) reputation without any prior finding of guilt […] Her claim is that she is a victim of the state’s actions and she seeks to protect her fundamental rights.”
MI5 continue to defend the claims, with their lawyer saying the emergency alert issued in 2022 was necessary “to protect parliamentary democracy from the threat posed by foreign political interference“. There are enough leaks in Parliament nowadays as it is…
Who is Rebecca Long-Bailey, the 37 year-old Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury who is being tipped as Jez’s successor? Last year in an interview on Sky News she refused to rule out the conspiracy theory that MI5 are working to destabilise Corbyn:
DERMOT MURNAGHAN: Can I just ask you lastly and rather briefly, Rebecca Long-Bailey, what do you make of this extraordinary claim from Len McClusky, or maybe you don’t think it’s extraordinary, that MI5 might be trying to destabilise Jeremy Corbyn?
REBECCA LONG-BAILEY: Well I can’t comment on that myself, I haven’t had any briefings on that but there are a lot of crazy things happening in politics at the moment and given the last few months nothing would surprise me.
Six months on and it’s Agent Long-Bailey who is destabilising Jez…
MPs will be briefed by a senior MI5 spook tomorrow in the wake of the increased terror threat and abuse sent to politicians after the Syria vote. Paul Martin is a career spy chief who works as parliament’s security director. He worked for MI5 for 27 years undertaking fieldwork mainly in the Middle East and still has a pass at Thames House. Martin will give an hour long talk about personal security tomorrow:
From: Government Whips Admin
Re: Personal Security brief
The Parliamentary Security Director, Paul Martin, will brief MPs on their personal security on Wednesday 9 December from XXX in Committee Room XXX.
All colleagues are encouraged to attend.
Deputy Chief Whip
Incidentally, this is what a career MI5 agent’s LinkedIn page looks like:
Wonder if John “disband the security services” McDonnell will show…
The government have finally responded to the Intelligence and Security Committee report on the intelligence relating to the murder of Lee Rigby published in November. In a classic bit of spin, they have blamed their failings on everyone else. Despite the fact that only 7 of the 59 recommendations and conclusions in the ISC report related to internet companies, response leads with a condemnation of Facebook for failing to flag up one of the killers online messages, demanding the US based company submits itself to UK law.
Buried further down the response are a few mea culpas including the acknowledgement that MI5’s delay in bugging Michael Adebolajo was “not acceptable”. If MI5 had done their job, Adebolajo would have been under surveillance in the days leading up to the attack…