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What if I told you that this OPM aide’s tweet (location & time stamp) demonstrates that during #tailsend, @michelle_muscat either (a) outswam not only @MichaelPhelps sprinting but a shark at a steady 9 kph for a gruelling 9 km or (b) cut her 14 km swim short (by ~7 km)? #talltale
Hope that caught your attention. This thread will sum up the evidence that @Michelle_muscat’s claim that she swam 14 kilometres for #tailsend is absolute rubbish that deserves to be framed alongside Kim Jong Il’s claim he invented the hamburger. 2/
In case you are wondering why this deserves attention, after all Michelle did claim she swam 14 km “for charity”, I have one word for you - truth.

You should always defend it or the lies tend to add up. 3/
After all, why should a km be 1,000m for you and I & be 500m for the wife of #Malta’s Prime Minister?

No, that’s not on.

Incidentally just to address this comment, a nautical mile is longer than a land mile. You really don’t want to add further distance to this swim.. 4/
Also, the difference between admitting you swam approx 7 km & lying that you swam 14 km including projecting your epic swim on a big screen at the expensive “after party” is less about charity & more about ego & feeding personality cults.

Charity doesn’t care about distance. 5/
And yes, the guy that was with Neville Gafa on his “personal trip” to Libya where he “bumped” into a warlord was invited to Michelle’s after-party too.

That’s an example of another big lie & why they must be always be called out. 6/
With that out of the way, we can start to establish actual distance swam using open source intelligence techniques (OSINT).

That’s the same stuff used by both what you’d commonly call spies as well as brilliant people fighting back against #posttruth like @bellingcat 7/
It’s also stuff you can do at home with a laptop or ipad. All you need is a critical mind, patience & ideally a bunch of people oversharing stuff online. 8/
Fortunately, @Michelle_muscat’s fawning entourage of leeches & lackeys literally flooded social media with photos & videos of #tailsend. As did #Malta’s politically captured national broadcaster & PL media.

Let’s roll. 9/
If you recall, in this thread I estimated the starting point using the notice to mariners stopping sea traffic for Michelle to undertake her crossing.

We can be much more precise than that. 10/
So, the notice to mariners refers to “Ras il-Qammieh” in the North of Malta. That’s this place:… 11/
We also know that was the approximate intended starting place since @Michelle_muscat kindly tagged her location on Instagram at the start of the swim. The location is here on Instagram posts: 12/
But we can be more specific than that. Plus a location can be manually added or altered.

There is, as a minimum, a 1 km difference between whether she started on the north side or the southern side of that peninsula so given every metre counts let’s fact check. 13/
Serendipitously, we have a video from @lukedalli88 & a bunch of photos from various social media accounts of the start.

For a link to the video see here:…

These photos give you the front view. 14/
And these photos and stills give you the view of the starting boat and the view behind Michelle’s starting position. 15/
We are going to look for features to determine which side of the peninsula & ideally where Michelle jumped. Given that the video was shared live we can also determine with precision the time she set off. 16/
This photo has great depth showing the fuller horizon. Let’s focus on areas 1, 2 & 3.

Starting with area 3, that’s the side of the promontory / hill. It also matches the other photos.

We also know that the photo is from a relatively reliable source (plus we reverse searched the image using @google images: 18/
Moving onto areas 1 and 2. Let’s zoom in a little.

So the photographer standing behind Michelle Muscat on the starting boat had a direct line of sight to:

(a) a pink building (a hotel), and
(b) what looks like a lighthouse on a breakwater.

We can also see a landmass in the background (Comino) plus what looks like the Gozo ferry. 20/
Looking behind us at the same moment that she dived, using this photo we can see the edge of what looks like a rocky outcrop and a landmass in the distance. You could reverse search the image too if you are unclear about where it came from or was used. 21/
So looking towards the front (direction she swam in) we have comino, a breakwater and a hotel. Behind us we have the edge of a rocky outcrop into the sea and a landmass in the backdrop.

Time to identify the hotel and the breakwater. 22/
If you are Maltese those two should be familiar but if not, Google maps / Earth & Google do wonders as a starting point.

In this case we can see the Paradise Bay Hotel and the Cirkewwa Lighthouse 23/
Ok so we know that Michelle did not start on the lower side of that pennisula or there would be no clear line of sight towards Comino, the lighthouse and the hotel.

But where was she exactly? 24/
Let’s focus on the rear view now.

There’s that rocky outcrop in the foreground but then in the background we can make out another peninsula and, yet further back, a larger landmass with what looks like a lonely building. 25/
We know that in order to see Comino and the lighthouse whilst also seeing a landmass behind you, you cannot be right at the edge of the Ras il-Qammien end of the tail. Why? Because geography and physics (and Google Earth): 26/
Which means that we are closer to the lighthouse than the edge of the promontory. Let’s look for a lonely or tall building or tower.

Bingo. 27/
Also a kind chap uploaded a picture 3 days ago from near that abandoned radio station at the top of Rdum il-Qammien showing the view down towards Comino / Cirkewwa: 28/
So let’s draw a line from the tower to the lighthouse on Google Earth. And now the other direction looking out for those features. 29/
That places us here. So the starting point was closer than originally thought.

This also makes sense since there was a Force 4 /5 (6 if Michelle is to be believe) wind coming from the NW (Majjistral). 30/
Meaning both the boat and Michelle would have been pushed against the rocks. 31/
So we have a starting location. We also know the exact start time since @lukedalli88 went live on facebook showing the start.… 32/
The video went live at 11.38 am on Saturday 13 July. Michelle hits the water 1.41 minutes into the video. By the end of the 3 minute video she hasn’t quite yet set off but let’s assume here since we are talking about mere seconds in a 4 hour swim.

Start time was 11.41 am. 33/
From a spot in this area.

Notice the line shows that the line of sight also has the edge of comino in view. This tallies with the original front facing photo. 34/
The next location that we have evidence of is this video that went live at 12.48pm on the day. That is just over 1 hour in.…
From the video we can see that Michelle is now closer to the light house (though there is a breakwater between her and the lighthouse) and the hotel. 36/
That places her just outside Paradise bay here: 37/
So in an hour (11.41am to 12.48pm) this is the approximate distance covered. 38/
Hardly a record stretch. However a slow start also tallies with the pace in the video where one can see Michelle is swimming breast stroke and taking regular breaks. 39/
It also tallies with this hilariously Pyongyang-like account of Michelle Muscat’s epic voyage where the slow pace of the first 2 hours is stressed. Yes, thats the same person cheering at the finish line. 40/
The next photo is this one. The same one that was shared by her husband. It was also shared by #marigoldfoundation and Joe Tanti from OPM. 41/
Except there’s a 42 minute difference between the two photos being uploaded with Joe Tanti’s “live” being 42 minutes later. 42/
If we compare this photo (uploaded just 19 minutes after the video above went live) to the video we have approximately the same location, just perhaps closer to the lighthouse. 43/
Next piece of evidence.

At 1.16pm, @lukedalli88’s Manatnejn page went live on facebook again with this video:…

This places her just past the Cirkewwa breakwater at 1.16pm. 45/
Which means here.

We are at 1.65-78km around 1 hour 35 minutes into the swim.

You can see how the sea currents start to help (plus footage shows she got a boost). 46/
Marigold’s page also went live at the same time:…

Here it looks as though Michelle is swimming a mix of breastroke, doggy paddle with flipper kicks and a touch of drowning... 47/
Things go a little dark after that. 48/
The Marigold page posts an update at 1.46pm saying she’s 2 hours in but there are no markers other than water. 49/
Joe Tanti from OPM tweets at 2.58pm that Michelle is now swimming through Little Armier. Given a 40+ minute gap between reality and his last “live update” let’s treat this one as suspect. However, it gives us a route.

Michelle is not claiming she went to Comino. 50/
16 minutes later the marigold page uploads a photo of Michelle in front of a white structure. With a start time of 11.41, this would place Michelle at yes about 3.5 hours into the swim. Only 50 minutes left to the end of the swim. 51/
Let’s place markers.

Little armier. 52/
The white structure is in fact easy to identify as White Tower. We also know from the angle of the building that she’s approaching it rather than past it. 53/
That would roughly place her in the same spot identified.

For a more detailed map of white tower including the architecture, there’s a handy video here:

Or of the beach:
So at 3 hours and 30 minutes we are just 4.45 km into what was meant to be a 14 km swim. 55/
We’ve looked at this before in the other thread but the only way to explain this is if (a) Michelle can make up the difference in 50 minutes by swimming over 9 km in what’s left of the time (that’s beyond superhuman) or (b) to have swum much further previously. 56/
Let’s pretend that Michelle can swim at an Olympic athelete’s speed of 4 kph. So there are 50 minutes left, that means say 4 km to go, meaning at that point she’d have swum 10 km already.

Over to Google Maps using the last time / position (and ignoring Tanti’s tweet). 57/
The options to make up that missing distance are quite limited. 58/
We have no indication that Michelle swam in a zigzag pattern or around Comino in those missing 2 hours besides she’d have needed to swim at a constant 4.31 kph to cover the missing 8.62 km. Which is not realistic. 59/
The most realistic scenario is that when this photo was taken at 3.5 hours into the swim, Michelle had swum, yes, just 4.45km, 60/
Again, when you watch her swimming back at 1.17pm (1.5 hr into the swim) you can realise that her stroke is weak and uncoordinated and she seems to be almost moving backwards.

So unless something changed dramatically it’s unlikely that she suddenly flew. 61/
Onto the finish line which is the next hotspot. Here we have quite a few photos and videos. We know the swim finished at 4.20pm because again pages went live on facebook almost simultaneously. 62/
Notably Marigold:…

And Manatnejn:…

Both with people on the same boat incidentally. 63/
Let’s look for placemarkers.

We know we are looking at a rocky outcrop which looks like the mouth of a large bay. In the distant horizon we can see buildings on a landmass.

There’s also the Hera (a charter boat) sailing by. 64/
Luckily those rocks are quite distinctive. Slugs bay. 65/
We are here. Just outside the bay. It is also a place that the Hera passes from regularly.

In summary, this is the #TailsEnd swim.

Over-stated by half.

I can leave you with this, the promo video for this event: 68/
And this, last year’s route the #RocktoRock which was meant to be 12 km. 69/
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