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The Somerton Man Case. The body of a man found on an Australian beach close to a major Atomic Testing ground, he was probably poisoned, a copy of the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam and an unbroken Code page found and associated to him. Set against a Cold War background in 1948, was this man a spy? We think so and this blog focuses on the evidence that was left behind and in some cases missed, the Code page, Dry Cleaning numbers, A Poem and a small, torn piece of paper bearing the words TAMAM SHUD.

Saturday, 29 April 2017


KLAUS FUCHS Circa 1945


A little known fact, although it hasn't been a hidden one, is that Klaus Fuchs, German born nuclear physicist and atom spy, was amongst the thousands of German men arrested and interned in June 1940. Like many of his compatriots he was initially interned in the Isle of Man before being put aboard a ship bound for Canada with the eventual destination of the Sherbrooke Internment camp.

Briefly, his history involved his membership of the Nazi party before he was expelled in 1932. He joined the German Communist Party in 1933 which was the same year that he escaped from Nazi oppression and took up residence in the UK. He attended at the University of Bristol and then Edinburgh University before his arrest in 1940.

Not much is known of his time on the Isle of Man as the vast majority of records from that time were destroyed in the early 1950s which interestingly coincided with Fuchs' departure from Harwell and subsequent arrest for spying.

The fact that he was an internee brings up the connection between a man who would become a formal atom spy in 1941 and other internees that were staged on the Isle of Man before shipping out to Canada or Australia and the Hay internment camp. Tibor Kaldor comes to mind.


The opportunity for links is clear:
1. Via the Isle of Man internment camp to internees who later boarded the Dunera headed for Sydney, Hay and finally Tatura.

2. Via his eventual 'cut out' courier, Harry Gold, to Major Pavel Ivanovich Fedosimov.

3. It is recorded that whilst at Sherbrooke, Klaus met with a contact who gave him a list of left wing associates.




In the previous post, we showed the overlay and comparison of the appearance of Pavel Fedosimov and the plaster bust image of the Somerton Man. If you recall, I did say that my belief was that the bust was created using the post autopsy images as a guide. and it occurred to me that by comparing the post autopsy image to the Fedosimov image we may get a more accurate outcome.

The short video clip above does just that, it compares the two main images as an overlay This was a little tricky to achieve given that we had two quite different camera angles and the subjects head was also inclined to the left in the post autopsy image with a different incline for the image of Fedosimov. I was able to rotate the Fedosimov image and also made a minor adjustment to the angle of the Somerton Man's image and the result is as you see in the clip.

You will notice that the image of SM has theyes mostly closed whilst Pavel's image has the eyes quite well open. The set of the eyes, the length and shape of the nose and the mouth are all very close to a 98% match, small differences are down to lighting and shade plus a variation in the photo angles.

I am still of the opinion that Fedosimov is the Somerton Man with a 98% certainty. It is impossible to be 100% certain, whilst Clive has contacted the FBI and the Atomic Energy organisation in Switzerland, we have had no response from the latter and the former was unable to offer any real assistance in tracking down further information or photographs that included Pavel. This is despite Pavel having been identified by Harry Gold from a photograph provided by the FBI according to FBI public records. There is always room for error and there is always a possibility that we may still get a response from the FBI about Pavel and his eventual fate.

Next post will describe the link between Pavel Fedosimov and Australia, it is an extraordinary set of circumstances and I hope you will find it as fascinating as we have.

Friday, 28 April 2017




In the video above you will notice that there is an almost perfect match between the Fedosimov facial features and those shown in the image of the Somerton Man Bust full face view. The set of the eyes is the same, the shape of the nose is the same but as the video progresses, you will note that there is a difference between Fedosimov's mouth/chin line and that of the bust. On close examination you will see that the difference is explained by the fact that Fedosimov's mouth is open in his image whilst the Bust image shows a closed mouth, in fact the Somerton Man's mouth was glued shut after the autopsy, a common practice. The open mouth has the effect of lengthening the chin as you will observe. The angle from which the Fedosimov photograph was taken and the lighting also play a part in this video.

This second video is to show in better detail the match between the nose of SM and that of Fedosimov:

As you can see, the nose shape is exactly the same with the only difference being the lighting and shadow effects. If you look carefully at the nostrils in particular, they seem to me to be perfectly matched.

In a very recent post we showed the issues related to the shape of the Somerton Man's ears, that post demonstrated that aspect,

My view is that, given the open mouth of Fedosimov, we have a 99% match between the face of Fedosimov and that of the Somerton Man bust. This underpins my belief that the Somerton Man is very likely to be KGB Major, Pavel Fedosimov.

It is acknowledged that the plaster bust was constructed by Paul Lawson based in part on the post autopsy image of the Somerton Man.

Fedosimov was last seen in July 1948 as he boarded a ship bound for Russia, there is no recorded sighting of him since that time.

But how was Fedosimov linked to Australia? More on that in an upcoming post.

Tuesday, 25 April 2017



This weapon whilst looking very like a Colt 45 automatic, was in fact a high powered gas powered dart gun developed through and after WW2 as a lethal way in which to dispose of an enemy quickly and efficiently. It must be said that 'quickly' did not equate to painlessly.

The weapon had a range of 250 feet and the projectile that it fired was a super slim dart barely wider than a human hair.There were a number of poison options that were used some of which were more exotic than others but two of which are of particular interest to this case.


Whilst Digitalis, a 'heart' drug of the time and for the record the same medication that was taken by Russian Spy Harry Dexter White when he died back in August 1948. That was an extraordinarily busy month for those involved in the 'trade'. Back to the point at hand, it was thought by many experts at the time that Digitalis was the most likely cause of the Somerton Man's death but there was no trace of such a poison in his body, it was a drug that quickly dissipated into the system.

One aspect that puzzled me was the fact, I understand, that SM's heart stopped mid beat, that is a most unusual occurrence but I stand to be corrected. Perhaps Byron may like to contribute on that.

The bottom line is that we have a named but unproven cause of death.


What sort of poison is that could have put an end to SM's life? What clues, if any,exist that could point us in the right direction? We know that all substances leave behind a trace, a metabolite trace. 

But there was no such trace in the case of SM and that could be because the traces that were left were those normally to be found in the system. A perfect poison.

We know that our US friends and perhaps their enemies, were constantly working at new and improved methods and hence the headline and image at the top of the page. Some of the poisons being investigated for use included, shellfish toxin, crocodile bile, cobra venom and botulinum. There were two others, SUXAMETHONIUM, (called SUX) a drug used as an anaesthetic, and POTASSIUM CHLORIDE.

In the case of SUX, in sufficient quantities, it paralyses the muscles of the body and delivers a very painful death though quick, within a minute the victim stops breathing and asphyxiates. 

Researching this topic, it brought to mind the fact that SM was seen to wave his arm but then stopped. True to say that was some hours before his estimated time of death.

POTASSIUM CHLORIDE given in sufficient quantity however, acts somewhat differently. it causes severe heart arrhythmia and within minutes the heart spasms and stops, the victim dies.

Could it be that SM was given a smaller earlier dose of PC or SUX? Enough to disable him and then the final overdose was delivered at a safe distance? Both of these options would no trace for a doctor to uncover at an autopsy and both of which were tested for use in the early cold war years. 


One wonders about the watcher, the man in the hat who stood by the fence looking down at the scene and patiently watched SM as he slowly deteriorated.

Last thought for the moment at least, looking at Tibor Kaldor's death certificate and autopsy report, there are similarities in the description of the probable cause.

Monday, 24 April 2017




This training clip prepared by the OSS in 1942, covers, in quite some detail, how couriers and cut outs operated in the 1940s. In particular it shows a number of ways in which messages were concealed before following through with the subsequent capture and search of the courier.

Various concealment techniques are discussed and shown with specific attention paid to the search techniques applied to captured agents. In the clip you will see how extraordinarily thorough the search is, a full body search that examines every part of the body, ears, eyes, hair, skin and cavities.

When it came to the agents clothes, I think you will be very surprised at what the clip reveals. Labels are removed from clothing as are buttons and the jacket is completely deconstructed.


When the belt is examined at the 18 minute mark of the clip, the search revealed micro writing in secret ink on the surface of the belt with chemicals being used including iodine vapour.

I hope you enjoy watching this short film, I think you will find it casts much light on the Somerton Man case.

Watch the actions of the girl...


I think it is well worth listing and comparing aspects of the SM case and the details of this training film. It is by taking this approach that we can formulate a view of just what happened to the Somerton Man.

Direct comparisons are as follows:

1. Labels removed from clothing
2. Jacket 'de-constructed'
3. Buttons removed
4. Secret micro written message found
5. Shoes de-constructed (in the case of SM, we have only a photograph of the outer of the shoes, there is no photograph that shows the numbers found in the shoe bringing into question whether the shoes in the photograph are in fact the 'real' shoes.
6. Teeth, in the clip teeth and fillings being removed is mentioned. SM had a number of missing teeth and we do not know whether or not they had been missing for some time
7. We have said for some time that iodine vapour may have been used to reveal secret writing, the clip discusses the use of this chemical and UV lighting.
8. In a separate video, the use of dead drop message forwarding is shown. It discusses in particular railway station left luggage lockers. See the OSS training clip below:

The mutual identification method of torn paper was shown in an earlier Fedosimov post, match the paper and confirm the validity of the contact. Once again a strong similarity to the SM case.

The evidence is mounting and it it seems to me to be well past the tipping point leaving little if any doubt that the Somerton Man case is indeed one of espionage.