A bearded man of avuncular appearance had started early in replying to e-mails on the 17th July 2003. He was in the office of his pretty cottage, with the scent of roses telling of an English summer. The little village of Southmoor was stirring. He was to send over 80 via one of five hard drives and mostly in reply. Some would be encrypted because he was writing to friends and colleagues who like him shared secrets in the field of “WMDs”. And some would be human and ordinary as from a father of three daughters. He had delighted in seeing a new born foal and arranged to take his daughter Rachel down the village that Thursday evening to see young life together.
Many of the e-mails in his inbox were from friends expressing sympathy for his having been put through the mangle of the state machine; his responses were hopeful. In one he spoke of arrangements having been made for his return to Iraq in 8 days; he was looking forward to that.