Re: “Russian ambassador rebuts accusations in UK ex-spy poisoning case”, Have Your Say, March 18.
I suggest the following as a contribution to the lighter side of fake news:
Having finished reading “From Russia With Love”, Boris Johnson was enjoying Ian Fleming’s lesser-known James Bond story “The Property of a Lady” when news broke of a nerve gas attack on a former Russian spy in Salisbury.
Boris was totally absorbed by the opening paragraphs: “His eyes, his mind, was barely in focus as he turned on the pages of a jawbreaking dissertation by the Scientific Research Section on the Russian use of cyanide gas, propelled by the cheapest bulb-handled children’s water pistol, for assassination.”
Yes, the events fitted in perfectly. A Russian double agent, Russian nerve gas made at the end of the Cold War … who else but Russia would have ordered the Salisbury attack?
Hence the firebrand foreign minister jumped to conclusions and announced, “It is overwhelmingly likely Putin ordered the spy killing” – an allegation the Russian government quickly denounced as a breach of diplomatic rules of decent behaviour.
Would things have been different had Boris been reading the Sherlock Homes series instead? Definitely. Boris would probably have been inspired to conclude that the big black whale seen surfacing and spouting in the North Sea on the same day was in fact a disguised Russian submarine, ready to pick up the runaway assassin.