DisInfoWars with Tom Secker: Mystery of Martial Bourdin

Martial Bourdin was an anarchist who accidentally blew himself up near the Greenwich Royal Observatory in London in 1894. This event formed the basis for a book by Joseph Conrad and a film by Alfred Hitchcock, but behind the absurdity and horror lies a familiar tale of secret agents, insider accounts and the advancement of the security state. This week we examine the mystery of the death of Martial Bourdin, the problems of the official record and the secrecy surrounding the infiltration of the anarchist movement in this period. I round off by presenting a theory that could explain what happened, in light of what we have already discussed in this series.


On the Line - David Rooney talks about the Greenwich bomb

Alex Butterworth - The World that Never Was: A True Story of Dreamers,
Schemers, Anarchists & Secret Agents

Listen to the Preview Clip Here

Listen to the full episode here (BFP Subscribers Only):


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  1. candideschmyles says:

    Thanks Tom for another enjoyable historical ponderfest. Not a lot I can say really except I look forward to your thoughts on dear old Guido.

  2. Thanks to Newcastle University.
    We can go back in Time.!
    Best Regards

  3. dancingbrave says:

    I used to be able to listen to and download podcasts on my mobile phone, this last week or so I unable to do either, has there been any technological changes that could cause this.
    It works fine on my laptop.

  4. 344thBrother says:

    Well done Mr. Secker.
    I just listened and am re-listening now. I like your style, I’ll comment further when I’ve re-heard your presentation.

  5. 344thBrother says:

    Preliminary thought:

    I would be interested in your take on David Shayler and his “Discovery” of his inner woman at a time when he and Annie Machon’s information on 7/7, MI5 and related. I find it interesting that this “Coming out” dovetails with what the whistleblower “Bradley (Chelsea) Manning” in some respects. Coincidence? Perhaps. Conveniently timed to discredit them, definitely. Coming after they were in custody and had been interrogated, it sounds like story making to me.

    Just a semi-related thought.

  6. 344thBrother says:


    Here’s a link to “The Secret Agent” by Conrad
    “Sabotage” by Alfred Hitchcock

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