Anorak News | Dr David Kelly: The Truth, The Conspiracy And the Media Joy

Dr David Kelly: The Truth, The Conspiracy And the Media Joy

by | 13th, August 2010

DR David Kelly, the Government weapons inspector, killed himself in July 2003. The civil servant was pushed into the maw of a voracious media when he was rumoured to be the source of the news that the Blair administration had “sexed-up” a report on Iraq’s military capabilities.

The Chilcot Inquiry Into The Iraq War, In Pictures

He admitted to having met the BBC Today programme’s Andrew Gilligan.

Dr Kelly was called to explain himself to MPs. Two days later he was dead.

His wife Janice Kelly said he became: “distracted… dejected… desperate…I just thought he had a broken heart. He had shrunk into himself”.

But with a conspiracy theory out there, what does the wife know? David Aaronovitch notes:

Goslett’s insinuation that because Janice Kelly wasn’t questioned “under oath’ then she was lying about her husband’s death, is despicable.

That’s Miles Goslett, Mail hack. He wrote back in January:

Last year, a group of doctors, including Dr Powers, compiled a medical dossier as part of their legal challenge to the Hutton verdict.

They argue that Hutton’s conclusion that Dr Kelly killed himself by severing the ulnar artery in his left wrist after taking an overdose of prescription painkillers is untenable because the artery is small and difficult to access, and severing it could not have caused death.

In their 12-page opinion, they concluded: “The bleeding from Dr Kelly’s ulnar artery is highly unlikely to have been so voluminous and rapid that it was the cause of death. We advise the instructing solicitors to obtain the autopsy reports so that the concerns of a group of properly interested medical specialists can be answered.”

Lord Hutton looked into the matter and concluded “the principal cause of death was bleeding from incised wounds to his left wrist which Dr Kelly had inflicted on himself with the knife found beside his body“.

Now Powers and the doctors are back. Nine leading doctors, including Dr Michael Powers QC, a fellow of the Royal College of Physicians, have had their their letter to the Times published. In it they ask for a full coroner’s inquest to re-examine the key medical evidence.

There has never been a full inquest:

The then Lord Chancellor, the government’s chief law officer, Charles Falconer, suspended an inquest into the death before an inquiry began, and the inquest was never resumed.

In a letter to the Times, the doctors write that:

“Insufficient blood would have been lost to threaten life. Absent a quantitative assessment of the blood lost and of the blood remaining in the great vessels, the conclusion that death occurred as a consequence of haemorrhage is unsafe.”

John Rentoul wonders:

Why you would expect to see much blood on porous earth has long (seven years) puzzled normal people. As Kelly had also swallowed a bottle of co-proxamol, it is in any case beside the point…

But it is the Mail’s obsession that is most offensive. It echoes the Express’s long-running compulsion to put the thinnest of non-stories about Madeleine McCann on its front page in its callous indifference to the grief of a family.

What says the Mail?

The mystery surrounding the death of Dr David Kelly deepened yesterday after the detective who found his body claimed he didn’t see ‘much blood’.

So it is a “mystery”?

The revelation by Detective Constable Graham Coe casts further doubt on the Hutton Report’s verdict that the Ministry of Defence scientist died of blood loss after slitting his wrist.

What did he reveal?

He told the Mail on Sunday: “I certainly didn’t see a lot of blood anywhere. There was some on his left wrist but it wasn’t on his clothes. On the ground there wasn’t much blood about, if any.”

Says the Mail:

The Hutton Report said there were bloodstains on a water bottle next to the corpse.

There might have been:

Mr Coe said: “I didn’t see any bloodstains on the bottle and I didn’t check the knife.”

What does that reveal? Well, the Mail’s story ends:

However, Mr Coe does not suspect foul play. He said: ‘In my view he [Dr Kelly] took his own life. Only he will know why he did that.’

So, Dr Kelly was not murdered, says the expert. Maybe he topped himself over money worries?

Dr Kelly, 59, was one year short of the standard retirement age for civil servants when he died… one financial adviser put it: “Any threat to his pension at that stage would have been a devastating blow from which there was no hope of recovery.”

Michael White rubs his chin and concludes:

I’m still minded to endorse the official conclusion, not least because it’s hard to imagine a serious alternative. But the conspiracy theorists are occasionally right and the concerns of nine experts in the Times can’t be brushed aside, even if they are wrong, as experts often are.

Careful you don’t get splinters, Michael:

So we may have to hold that inquest – and sack a few more teaching assistants to pay for it? – to clear the air. The sad thought remains that, as with Hutton, Butler and, in due course, Chilcot, some people won’t be satisfied.

What? The media loves it – it’s a lot easier than reporting on the actual war and the reasons for it…

Posted: 13th, August 2010 | In: Reviews Comments (5) | TrackBack | Permalink