Firstly my condolences to the bereaved and the wounded. This was a terrible incident, in a part of the world of which I am particularly fond. Las Vegas is a fun place to visit, always assuming that you’re not being strafed from the Mandalay Bay hotel. I once stayed at the nearby Tropicana.
At the time of writing the death toll l stood at 58, with 483 wounded, a total of 541 casualties, although that figure is certain to be adjusted. That makes it the deadliest mass shooting in modern US history. The total casualty figure is also a record. The victims were attending the Route 91 Harvest country music festival featuring stars such as Jason Aldean, Eric Church and Sam Hunt. I can’t pretend to be a country and western fan, but it sounds like an impressive line-up.
The music festival was taking place adjacent to the Strip, not far from busy McCarran Field. It was within rifle range of the Mandalay Bay. The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department initially claimed that this was a single-shooter incident, that the shooter was 64-yr old Mesquite resident Stephen Paddock, that he acted alone and that he committed suicide. They are now taking a more thoughtful position.
The FBI are closing down the investigation as fast as they can, pouring cold water on the suggestion of multiple shooters and Paddock having been aided. The appropriate US federal agency to investigate a mass-shooting is the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF). Everybody forgets that Eliot Ness and the Untouchables were in the Bureau of Prohibition, which eventually became the ATF. They had nothing to do with the FBI and wouldn’t have been allowed to go after Al Capone if they had. Big Al was way out of the Fibbies’ league, no offense intended.
The FBI are doing everything they can to push the ATF out of the way. If the shooting was sponsored by the German DVD that would make sense. The DVD have had much more success in penetrating the FBI than they have the ATF.
Single or Multiple Shooters?
As I keep emphasising, intelligence analysis is dynamic. Your conclusions have to be reviewed in the light of new information. At the same time people don’t want to wait for you to express your conclusions. You cannot afford to sit on the fence, not least in a quasi-war, and America and Germany are in a quasi-war. They have been since the last hot war between them ended in 1945.
There are surprisingly few single-shooter mass shootings. Oslo and Sandy Hook are classic examples of DVD-arranged massacres where the presence of other shooters was covered up in order to protect German intelligence. Given that Germany is waging a quasi-war on the USA and that mass shootings are a standard German intelligence tactic, my first blush thoughts were that this was another DVD-sponsored atrocity. The fact that Berlin is backing Madrid and the shootings took the police brutality in Catalonia off the front pages reinforced my initial thoughts.
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The single-shooter theory is falling apart. Officially all the shots were fired from one room in the Mandalay Bay, on the 32nd floor. A room service receipt suggests that Paddock had a guest in at least one of the two rooms he stayed in at the Mandalay.
Readers will not be surprised to learn that the high rooms at the Mandalay Bay do not have opening windows. Why would you do that, in Las Vegas of all places? You’d have to put trampolines around the bottom of the hotel to catch the jumpers. Gambling in Vegas favors the house, which is why I don’t usually gamble when I’m in town, contenting myself with good food, good gay sex and drinking. (What can I say, I’m a social liberal!)
So if we have a high-floor shooter the first thing we look for is a broken window. Even in Nevada they don’t build in sniper slots in the windows “for your safety and convenience, in case you should need to gun down people in the street”. However we don’t have a broken window, we have two broken windows, which appear to me to be too far apart for the same room.
Hotel rooms on the Strip tend not to be that large – land is expensive, and the casinos like to pack the punters in. I’ve not seen an explanation for the second broken window.
I’m hearing multiple shooters, with most of the shots coming from a lower floor, possibly the 4th. That makes sense ballistics-wise – shots from a lower floor would be easier, and over 500 casualties is a ridiculously high number for a single-shooter in 10 or so minutes. The number of weapons is also very high, given that hotel security in Vegas is usually pretty good. I wouldn’t want to try and smuggle over 15 weapons and a few thousand rounds of ammo into a Vegas hotel room.
There is no evidence moreover that any of the guns police the found in the hotel room had actually been fired, or for that matter acquired by Paddock. As with Lee Harvey Oswald the audit trail is pretty thin.
The media are in meltdown over bump-stocks. Some fact checking is in order. Just because a couple of bump-stocks were found in Paddock’s room does not mean that he acquired them. They could have been placed in his room after he was taken down – I am dubious about the suicide theory. Seems more likely that he was taken down by a SWAT team.
I am equally dubious, BTW, about the claim that Paddock was taken down by the FBI Hostage Rescue Team. I doubt the boys happened to be vacationing in Las Vegas that weekend and Vegas is a long way from Quantico. Having the Hostage Rescue Team handy would be just a little bit too convenient!
Bump-stocks allow you to fire an assault rifle in automatic mode. Big deal. Every assault rifle I’ve ever handled has had a full automatic mode. Some modern assault rifles have three options: single-shot, three-shot burst and full automatic. Moreover bump-stocks can affect accuracy, and this was accurate shooting, so accurate that LVMPD and the FBI are sitting on the figure of recovered rounds which did not hit a human being. You can bet that someone checked the crime scene for rounds which missed.
What a bump-stock does not do is give you more ammo. Assault rifle mags vary, but 15 rounds is not unusual. You can tape two mags together, but you still have to eject the empty magazine, then reverse and insert the second mag. That still only gives you 30.
Moreover you have to zero in again each time you change a magazine. People are not static targets. Please don’t’ try this at home, but folk tend to get rather annoyed if you shoot at them. They do things like hitting the deck or taking cover.
Distinguished colleagues have already made the point on VT that combat veterans who have listened to the tapes are thinking belt-fed 30 cals., not assault rifles. I respectfully agree.
At this time I am thinking belt-fed 30s, using crossfire, with two teams of two, possibly with a third person to cover their backs, on the 4th floor, with a further shooter on the 32nd floor to give the impression that was the main threat axis.
I am not even sure that Paddock got a shot off. He may have been a total patsy, like Lee Harvey Oswald, who never fired the gun the FBI and the Warren Commission claimed, on flimsy evidence, was his. Paddock’s girlfriend may be telling the truth about being in the dark, because Paddock’s role may in fact have been quite limited. Even if he got a few shots off that doesn’t mean that he was responsible for most of the casualties.
The autopsy and ballistic evidence will be key, but the FBI will be desperate to cover it up. As with the Kennedy Assassination it may take decades for the truth to emerge.
Coincidence theorists are out in force – scarcely anybody in the media has the intelligence to link Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, the Mexico City quake and the mass-shooting in Vegas. President Trump needs to be briefed in on the DVD and the quasi-war which Germany is waging on America. He’s smart enough, with respect, to suspect that this series of damaging events can’t be coincidental, but he needs the facts.
Sadly, I doubt that enough people were murdered and wounded in Las Vegas to cause those – and they know who they are – who are holding back Spyhunter from the President to change their minds. What they don’t seem to realise is that the DVD are real, the threat is real and that the President of the United States has enough access to military intelligence to be able to due diligence much of what I have written about. The CIA, FBI, DNI and DHS will never tell him the truth, but the military may give straight answers to straight questions from the Commander-in-Chief.
In the meantime it would be enormously helpful if the anti-semites blaming Israel and the conspiracy theorists blaming the deep state could restrict themselves to asking intelligent questions and stop supplying silly answers. Why would Mossad want to shoot up a music festival? Because one of the singers sang out of tune? So far as I know Bibi Netanyahu actually likes country music.
I can just imagine Admiral Rogers’ response at Fort Meade if somebody came up to him and said that he had formulated a cunning plan: ‘why don’t we send a couple of machine-gun squads to Vegas and shoot up a country and western music festival? We’ll be bound to hit hundreds of Republicans?’
The Iran Nuclear Deal
Another area where the DNI and CNI are holding out on the President is Iran’s nuclear weapons program. As I explain in Spyhunter France delivered a large quantity of black plute to Iran after the Iraq War. That was the intelligence which Dr David Kelly CMG was murdered for, in order to stop it reaching Israel.
Iran already has nuclear weapons, with plutonium cores. The uranium enrichment program is an intelligence blind. The President is right to decertify the deal. It’s a joke.
The Foreign Office, State and the EU are all screaming at him to keep the deal, but they each must know about the Iranian nukes. The Foreign Office in particular has a long record of acting in bad faith. This is the same Foreign Office which secretly encouraged Argentina’s invasion of the Falkland Islands and told them where our Royal Marines would be, in the hope the Marines would be killed. The Foreign Office lost its moral compass at Munich. President Trump shouldn’t take anything coming out of London too seriously as regards Iran.
Boeing v. Bombardier
The decision of the Commerce Department to whack tariffs of nearly 300% on Bombardier’s excellent C-series airplanes was a huge blow to trade relations between the US, Canada and Britain. The wings are made in Northern Ireland (a plane I was in taxied past the factory when flying out of Belfast a few weeks ago).
This was almost certainly a political decision – the federal bureaucracy is heavily penetrated by DVD assets and their proteges. The DVD are well aware that a loss of jobs in Belfast would hit the DUP, whose support is critical for Theresa May. It is vital that this ridiculous decision is overturned.
Nobody in the States should underestimate the damage this is doing. On BBC’s Question Time the week before last, Peter Hitchens, one of only two intelligent journalists in Britain, stated that “America is not our friend”. Peter is not particularly pro-American, I am afraid, so coming from him the statement was not too surprising. What would have alarmed Embassy officials monitoring the program however, is that not one of his co-panellists, nor any member of the audience, challenged him.
Congratulations to AfD, the nice German Eurosceptic party, who made considerable gains. There was never any doubt that Angela Merkel would remain the head Hun, but she has been weakened. The AfD are patriotic and conservative, but are a long way from being Nazis.
There is no truth by the way in the rumor that Frau Merkel is Hitler’s daughter. Apart from anything else she was born about three years after Hitler died. She’s also not nice enough, no offense intended.
The eponymous Senator Strange
Speaking of elections, I was delighted to see the eponymous Senator Strange going down in the Alabama Republican primary. Since the party’s pro-German, anti-American establishment were backing him, almost any choice would have been better. Judge Moore will do for me.
Prime Minister May
It’s been a disastrous week for Theresa May. Her conference speech in Manchester was a flop, accompanied by a clown giving her a P45, presumably having been let in to the conference by Manchester Police. In a lovely moment some of the letters on the slogan behind her fell off. The wheels are coming off her premiership, and not before time.
May signaled the need to get rid of her with a weak speech in Florence, Italy (I am aware that there is a Florence in Georgia, indeed I stayed in a motel there once). The Tory Right then decided to bitch-slap her, no offense intended.
Hilariously, the pro-European left, panicking about the pending collapse of the Anglo-European talks in Brussels, then mounted a coup of their own, which failed. They don’t have the numbers.
I can’t see Mrs May surviving much beyond Christmas. The talks probably won’t break down finally until last year, but they’ll be well on the way to collapse by Christmas. The EU has nothing to offer us – we trade at a massive deficit with the EU27 and don’t need a free trade deal. Only about 10% of British businesses actually export anything to the EU, but 100% of our businesses are held back by their absurd and costly regulations.
No deal will be better than deal the EU will be offering. Various pro-European lawyers and MPs are complaining that Parliament will be offered a ‘take it or leave it’ package. In fact, since there isn’t going to be a deal at all, there won’t be a need for a further Parliamentary vote. The UK will be leaving the EU, at long, long last, in March 2019.
The Ben Stokes Affair
In a further outrage GO2, the DVD’s London operation, apparently decided to sabotage England’s forthcoming Ashes cricket tour of Australia by setting up our best player, brilliant all-rounder Ben Stokes, in a bar fight in Bristol. This may not sound like a big deal – not many Americans understand cricket, any more than we understand baseball.
Trust me: setting England up to lose the Ashes is a BIG deal. The last time the Krauts pulled a crazy stunt like this, in 1932, they nearly handed Australia over to Japan, which would have made war in the Pacific last another three years. They put a German spy, Sir Pelham Warner, in charge of that year’s Ashes tour. He came up with the bright (not) idea of trying to kill a couple of Australian batsmen with vicious short-pitched bowling aimed at the body (bodyline).
Until MCC were briefed in and warned the Australians that England had been set up, the infamous Bodyline Tour threatened a complete diplomatic breach between Britain and Australia. This would have left Australia defenceless in the face of Japanese aggression, which was the whole idea of course.
It looks as though Germany is trying to swing the Ashes to Oz to punish Britain for Brexit. The Krauts must also be worried about the huge boost to national morale which an England win would bring. No doubt ISIS were made aware in advance of the nightclub incident, in which Ben Stokes was unlawfully arrested by sleazy Avon and Somerset Police, and placed large bets in South Asia.
The England cricket manager, Andrew Strauss, is not the sharpest knife in the box (no offense intended). A few years ago he was maneuvered by the South Africans, no doubt with President Zuma’s support, into dropping our best batsman, South-African born Kevin Pietersen, after a slightly silly tweet. We still haven’t replaced ‘KP’, as he’s known.
Strauss’s psychological profile would have confirmed that he can easily be panicked into dropping players for non-cricketing reasons. Hopefully wiser heads will prevail. I have already briefed in two senior figures in English cricket, one a former Test captain, and warned the Police and Crime Commissioner for Avon and Somerset. MI5 are likely to become involved, if they are not already, as Avon and Somerset have clearly been penetrated by GO2.
Like the murder of legendary British racing driver Jim Clark in 1968, the Stokes Affair looks like a classic case of sports espionage. GO2’s bottoms are going to have be smacked for this one. No doubt somebody, somewhere, is planning retaliation against Germany. Let’s hope it’s not another airliner.
Tom Petty (1950 – 2017) and Hugh Hefner (1926 – 2017)
Two great talents, albeit in different areas, have passed in the weeks, or is it months, since my last column. Tom Petty was a true star and a really fine musician. I loved his music, as did millions.
Hugh Hefner’s talents were a little less cerebral. Whereas Tom was a great performer on stage, Hugh was a great performer in bed. The guy certainly had a lot of fun, and good luck to him, always assuming that he wasn’t gay and over-compensating.
I don’t begrudge Hugh Hefner his bit of fun. Of the two artistes however, there is no doubt whose contribution to humanity was the greater, and whose achievements will be the more lasting.
Michael Shrimpton was a barrister from his call to the Bar in London in 1983 until being disbarred in 2019 over a fraudulently obtained conviction. He is a specialist in National Security and Constitutional Law, Strategic Intelligence and Counter-terrorism. He is a former Adjunct Professor of Intelligence Studies at the American Military University.
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