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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.

Tuesday, 3 July 2018

Somerton Man: What the evidence says... An oldie but a goodie...


There are many different views and lines of thought expressed across the internet on who SM may have been, how he died, who was involved, was the suitcase really his etc. etc. etc...

This blog has always focused on the evidence, in particular, the images but also including the evidence to be found in Lawson's diary and what we can learn from them all. Amongst those images are, the 'Code' page, the individual letters of the 'Code' page, the Somerton Man images, Jestyn's poem to Alf Boxall and Lawson's diary.

Starting with Jestyn's poem and the Code page, this is what I think the evidence tells us:

1. It is very likely that the 'Code' page was written by Jestyn. In support of that, some months ago I posted a comparison of the letter R from the code page and a letter R from Jestyn's poem, you will see below that they are quite similar. Please note that both letters are in the same aspect ratio and reasonably close in physical size, approximately 5mm in height. I have enlarged them a little again making an effort to keep the aspect ratios lined up. Others have copied this approach but missed out on the proper aspect ratio and its importance.

Note the way that the Police had marked the individual indentations beneath the image on the right from the code page, it's a kind of 'stippled' effect. You should be able to make out some of the letters so highlighted.

2. The poem to Alf Boxall and the code page both contain micro written letters and numbers as shown below, the first three being from the code page and the second three from Jestyn's poem:
Letter B line 3
Letter Q line 4
Letter A line 4

There are some vastly improved images of the Poem in progress and they will be posted here shortly. Interesting to note that in a post on Pete Bowes site a few months ago, he mentioned the issue of the overwriting and apparent 'mistakes' in spelling, read on...

The Special Operations Executive & Ink H

The technique used to create both the code page and the poem was known as 'Ink H' and was in use by British SOE agents as per their manual for Espionage Agents operating behind enemy lines. The method was to first write out the larger letters in ink, then insert the smaller code letters in pencil into the individual larger letters and finally carefully overwrite all of the larger letters once more in ink. To develop the coded message meant immersing the full code into a string bleach solution which bleached out the ink leaving visible the once 'hidden' penciled letters. This method required a lot of concentration to ensure that each of the smaller letters were properly covered by the final layer of ink, mistakes were made and perhaps that's what Pete Bowes had spotted.

The SOE association is not restricted to the use of Ink H, SOE, under Leo Marks, made a point of recruiting nurses as code specialists and agents. It is in my view highly probable that a similar approach was used here in Australia given the close relationship between British and Australian Intelligence services. Could it be that senior people within the Australian Health field and specifically in the business of recruiting new nurses, worked hand in glove with Military Intelligence? Anyone followed that up or any takers?

Another way to view the hidden penciled letters was if the person who wrote the code had leant on a book or other soft surface then indentations would have been left and there certainly were and still are valid methods for recovering 'indented writing'. According to Gerry Feltus, the Rubaiyat had indented writing and that is what was photographed. The Police then traced over the smaller indentations that were fashioned into the shape of the larger letters found on the page.

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