A former officer in the French military from 1959 to 2005 and a graduate of the prestigious military academy of Saint-Cyr, Dominique Delawarde served 8 years abroad including 3 years in the United States (1). After commanding military units of the Légion étrangère and Mountain Rangers, General Delawarde was also assigned to intelligence affairs at a national staff level.
In an editorial (2) published on the website of the French Army Support Association (ASAF), Dominique Delawarde expresses his surprise about the political as well as the media readiness to hold Russia responsible for the assassination attempt in Salisbury (United Kingdom) against Serguei Skripal, a 66-year-old former Russian military intelligence (GRU) colonel who emigrated thanks to an exchange of spies in 2010.
The former French general wonders how the British government was able to identify a deadly gas called “Novichok” while its composition would actually be unknown and evidence of its very existence would still need to emerge. Also, he doubts that Vladimir Putin could have had the idea of terminating an individual in such a complicated and risky way just 16 days before the Russian presidential election.
“If they had wanted to take Skripal down, the Russian special services would have done it properly, at the appropriate time and the body would never have been recovered,” adds General Delawarde. In sum, the Skripal case could be an “attempt to manipulate” and if ridicule killed, British Prime Minister Theresa May and Foreign Minister Boris Johnson would no longer belong to this world, Delawarde concludes.
(1) Dominique Delawarde has been, in addition to his rank as Officer of France’s Legion of Honor and Commander of France’s National Order of Merit, awarded the United States Meritorious Service Medal.
(2) Affaire SKRIPAL et accusation britannique : Libre opinion du général Delawarde, Association de soutien à l’armée française (ASAF), 3/20/2018.