Not only has Gable admitted, as part of his defence in the 1963/4 burglary trial, that he hoped to supply information to Special Branch on David Irving, but a confidential memorandum written by him to his producers in London Weekend Television (where he worked until recently as a researcher/presenter on the London Programme: he is now trying to work his ticket with an alleged 'heart condition') on 2 May 1977 gave clear, hard, evidence that he has also engaged in a two-way traffic of information with the security services of several countries, and acted as a conduit of misinformation for MI5 against fellow journalists, and socialists.
The memo was the subject of an article by Duncan Campbell and Bruce Page in the New Statesman in February 1980. Gable has never successfully refuted the information contained in the article. When Campbell and Page went down to LWT's offices to confront Gable with the evidence and demand some answers, Gable simply cleared his desk and fled, refusing to talk to them. This is in marked contrast to his previous meeting with Campbell, whom he took out to an expense account lunch during the 'ABC' Official Secrets case to pump him for information he could pass on to his friends in Special Branch.
The memo, written by Gable followed, he says, a lunch with a Security Service employee in May 1977. The nature of the official material received and recorded by him - mixed with large amounts of random gossip - indicates that much of it was coloured by phone-tap information and informer's reports. It consists almost entirely of libellous untruths about a group of 'target' individuals the 'ABC' Official Secrets defendants, American deportees Philip Agee and Mark Hosenball, and several of their acquaintances. In certain respects, material from Special Branch had been deliberately falsified to mislead Gable and his employers. The timing of the memo showed clearly an intense interest on behalf of MI5 in manipulating events surrounding the Agee/ Hosenball case and the beginnings of the 'ABC' prosecution.
“Kelly is the KGB man…”
The person most frequently, and libellously, mentioned in its pages was not directly involved in either case: Phil Kelly, a journalist acquainted with both sets of accused men. Kelly was around this time one of the victims of a number of burglaries and thefts in London which were clearly designed to gather information and documents rather than valuables (Gable's proven speciality, as witnessed by the Irving trial…)
Admitted to be one of a series, the memo was headed “Agencies” presumably a reference to Gable's information sources (named, apart from MI5, as the CIA, French and German security, Stewart-Smith's FARI institute, and the 'Israeli Foreign Office'). It mixes up a few accurate facts with half-truths, and constructs upon them a series of fantasies, linking the Young Liberals with Cubans, Palestinian and German terrorists, various contributors to Time Out, members of the London Co-Op, and the KGB, into a deadly, all-encompassing conspiracy. Gable also asserts that an “eye-witness” who “had infiltrated the Palestinians and some left groups” (and is apparently well known to him) has backed up his claims. There is a remarkable similarity between information received by Special Branch when they stopped Kelly at Heathrow Airport in 1970, and the “eye-witness” story re-told by Gable in 1977. The implication must be that Gable was at least aware of a Special Branch or MI5 informer amongst left-wing groups and remained quiet about it.
Gable wrote: “The arrest of Campbell / Berry and Aubrey has caused a civil rights row, but according to my top level security sources, they inform me in strictest confidence that for about four years Campbell/ Berry/ Kelly and others have been systematically gathering top-level security material. Campbell, who claims to have only an interest in technological matters as far as the state is involved, had done four years detailed research into the whole structure of the other side of not only our Intelligence services but those of other NATO countries. He has also gone to people who work on top security contracts and started off by asking them about open commercial work their companies do and then gradually asked them for information on top secret work, including that on underwater detection hardware, which he clearly knows is beyond the pale.
“Politically it appears the group have no guiding light or line, but Kelly is the KGB man who reaps the goodies gathered by other people…”
“The security service accepts that once the real nature of this case begins to emerge they expect people like Jonathan Aitkin (the Tory MP, who has expressed support for the ABC) will fade away fast. The security service accepts that a number of decent people have signed up to support these people on civil rights grounds and also they unofficially accept all the shortcomings of the act they have been held under, but they say they are sure this has gone beyond the bounds of Press Investigation.”
In the last few words of the memo Gable wrote: “I have now given the names I have acquired to be checked out by British/ French security services… it is now a time for waiting for a feed-back and also for further checks here.” The feed-back never came of course, because the whole story was really just black propaganda.