Will We Ever Be Told The Truth About
The Death Of Dr David Kelly?
by Melanie Phillips
24 July 2006
Everyone knows, don't they, that most untoward events generally have banal explanations such as muddle, incompetence or sheer blind chance.
To believe otherwise is to run the risk of being branded a 'conspiracy theorist', a small step away from being lumped together with the kind of people who think that crop circles are designed by visitors from Mars or that Princess Diana was murdered by MI6.
Even though the inquiry into the affair by Lord Hutton exonerated ministers and officials of virtually all charges, merely rebuking them for not having warned Dr Kelly that his name was about to be made public, the Government was still widely blamed for driving him to his death.
Right from the start, however, there were many who were not convinced Dr Kelly had taken his own life at all. Many aspects of the story just didn't seem to add up. First was the character of the man and his demeanour on the day he died.
Although he was under intense pressure, he was known to be a strong character and belonged to the Baha'i faith, which prohibits suicide.
Those closest to him (such as his sister), and even neighbours he met on his last walk, said that on the day he died he had shown no signs of depression.
The Hutton inquiry, and the experts it called, dismissed out of hand any idea that Dr Kelly had not killed himself. But the suspicions wouldn't go away, and developed a life of their own on the internet.
Such claims were given considerably more authority in 2004 when three medical specialists wrote in a letter to the Press that they did not believe the official finding that Dr Kelly died either from haemorrhaging from a severed ulnar artery in his wrist, or from an overdose of coproxamol tablets, or a combination of the two.
Such an artery, they said, was of matchstick thickness and severing it would not lead to the kind of blood loss that would kill someone. They also pointed out that, according to the ambulance team at the scene, the quantity of blood around the body was minimal - hardly what one would expect if someone has just haemorrhaged to death.
The tenacious Lib Dem MP Norman Baker gave up his front-bench job to investigate these claims. What he has uncovered is remarkable and poses questions which demand to be answered.
More explosively still, however, are Mr Baker's discoveries (published in yesterday's Mail on Sunday) about the behaviour of the police and the coroner.
The normal practice in such circumstances would be for the coroner to issue a temporary death certificate pending the official inquiry into such a death.
But in this case, the coroner
issued an unprecedented full death certificate, just one
week after the inquiry started into the circumstances of Dr
Kelly's demise ? and after the coroner had held a meeting
with Home Office officials.
What on earth could have been the point of such a meeting at such a sensitive time, except for the Government to direct the coroner in some unspecified and possibly improper way?
As for the police, their behaviour appears to have been even more bizarre.
According to Mr Baker, their operation to investigate Dr Kelly's death started around nine hours before the weapons expert was reported missing. What astounding prescience! With such psychic powers among the police, one wonders there is any crime at all.