Saturday, December 24, 2016

This issue: Russian KGB spy agency and IC reaction to POTUS-elect Trump


    
 
     This 12/24/16 “Spy Agency Happenings!” newsletter focuses on the U.S. Intelligence Community (IC) reaction to our new POTUS-elect, Donald Trump. It also features Russian intelligence, particularly the old KGB, since it may be raising its ugly head again!

     I did some digging and found an article about the KGB. After 20 years, Cambridge University released a trove of KGB documents handed over by a Soviet defector. I see Hollywood making a movie out of this Cold War material!

     There is a sign-up to subscribe to the “Russian Spy Agency Happenings!” newsletter at the top.

     We want to hear from you! Visit the “Discussion corner” at the bottom of the newsletter and voice your opinion on any of the articles.
 
     Happy reading!

Friday, December 16, 2016

Is Trump a chump for Russia's SVR spy agency?

 

 
    Move over Fake News, for Russia’s spy agency will surpass you in spreading bold-faced lies disguised as absolute truths. Four years ago,  Russia’s Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR) ordered three systems that automatically spread falsehoods, half-truths and deceptions over the Internet.
     The systems were ordered by a suspicious-sounding Russian customer named “Military Unit 54939,” according to the Kommersant Daily newspaper. The newspaper said this military unit belongs to Moscow’s prominent spy agency, the Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR). Incidentally, the SVR is Russia's primary external intelligence agency.
 

 
     So, what are these three systems all about? The first is called “Dispute.” It constantly monitors the blogosphere and social networks and unearths and targets critical propaganda attack points in order to single out the centers where the information originates. It learns the ways by which the information is spread through social networks and blogospheres and looks at factors that affect the popularity of various reports among Internet users- “What makes some info go viral?” they ask.
     Monitor-3” is the second system ordered by Military Unit 54939. It serves as a digital command post by organizing and managing a huge virtual community of controlled disinformation agents who inject state propaganda into the hubs identified by “Dispute.” The two systems work together, forming online virtual communities of popular subject matter. The SVR ends up controlling the flow of this information through the social media and across blogs.
     The third, and probably most important system is “Storm-12.” It automatically spreads the necessary information through the blogosphere, as well as “information support of operations with pre-prepared scenarios of influence on mass audience in social networks.”
     The first two systems started at the end of 2012 and “Monitor-3” began in 2013. The SVR refused comment on this matter, saying it has no obligations whatsoever to answer questions posed by unknown foreign reporters who call their offices about secret projects that may or may not be used by them.
     Is the SVR’s deluge of daily, mixed messages, half-truths, misleading statements, and out-and-out fabrications masquerading as facts appearing on your personal computer screen? Are you a fall guy, a chump, for the SVR? Worse yet, have millions of American voters became Putin’s saps during the 2016 presidential election campaigns?
     The CIA and NSA confirmed that Putin’s government had repeatedly hacked into and leaked Democratic Party documents throughout the presidential campaign. Instead of listening and learning from this intelligence, President-Elect Trump ignored and contradicted it, then insulted the CIA and NSA.
     The SVR has not only aided Trump’s campaign and interfered with America’s election process, it created a rift between the future POTUS and the entire U.S. Intelligence Community (IC) itself!
     The forefather of the SVR, the KGB, turned disinformation usage into an art form and expertly honed deception strategies throughout the Cold War. It’s now resurrected its ugly, digital head on your blogosphere and social media platforms.  Beware.

Related post: Putin ramps up espionage activities against the U.S. and NATO

Robert Morton, M.Ed., Ed.S. is a member of the Association Of Former Intelligence Officers (AFIO) and writes the online spy novel series "Corey Pearson- CIA Spymaster in the Caribbean".  The views expressed on this site do not represent those of any organization he is a member of. Contact him on the Secure Contact Form

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

OSINTNEWS- U.S. & FOREIGN INTELLIGENCE AGENCY HAPPENINGS!

     Welcome to OSINT NEWS, your portal to timely happenings within the U.S. and foreign intelligence agencies. Subscribe HERE!
     Congratulations! As a member of the OSINT NEWS community, you will immediately receive timely posts when they are published.
     There's more! The 3 resources below offer constant timely updates on happenings within the U.S. and foreign intelligence agencies:

(1) You will automatically receive the 
"Spy Agency Happenings!" newsletter which contains timely articles about important U.S. and foreign intelligence agency events. I search through over 150 U.S. and foreign newspapers and journals and hand-pick relevant items centered around a theme for each newsletter. A confirmation will be emailed to you shortly.  

(2) Visit the narrow right margin whenever you want. It holds a treasure of intelligence agency info. Get timely, often daily updates on happenings within the 17 agencies comprising the U.S. Intelligence Community (IC) by scrolling down the narrow right margin to "U.S. INTELLGENCE COMMUNITY HAPPENENINGS- click agency below". Choose the agency of interest, then below the 17 agencies listed, a list of all daily newspaper, magazine and recent journal articles appears.

(3) Interested in finding out about daily happenings in foreign spy services? Scroll down the narrow right margin to "FOREIGN SPY AGENCY HAPPENINGS". Just like in (2) above, click the foreign intelligence agency of interest and all daily newspaper, magazine and recent journal publications will appear below the list of foreign spy agencies.


Questions? Contact me on the Secure Contact Form

Robert Morton, M.Ed., Ed.S. is a member of the Association Of Former Intelligence
Officers (AFIO) and writes about the U.S. Intelligence Community (IC) and foreign intelligence agencies. His views are his own and do not reflect those of any organization he is a member of. 

CIA’S PIONEER OSS SECRET AGENTS FINALLY GET OVERDUE AWARD

OSS members, circa 1942
     It's nice to see that these World War II-era intelligence operatives are finally being honored. These men and women served in the precursor to the CIA, the Office of Strategic Services (OSS). 
     A bill is being signed into law by President Obama, and bestows the Congressional Gold Medal on the aging veterans of the OSS. The bill had over 320 co-sponsors in the House. For some ridiculous reason, there were rules that prevented groups, as opposed to individuals, from receiving the medal. The rules were waived. 
 
 
     A December 2016 article in the Washington Post (Gibbons-Neff), reported that these ridiculous rules were passed by the 114th Congress and required a waiver that had to be proposed by House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) and approved by the rest of the leadership.
     There were 13,000 original OSS members and now, 70 years later, they number fewer than 100. Kudos to these remaining veterans and to all their loved ones. This medal will mean much to them. 
     Last year, after attending an AFIO luncheon in Tysons Corner, Virginia, I toured the International Spy Museum in Washington, DC. I came across a roster of OSS personnel, and was amazed at the famous Hollywood actors among them: Marlene Dietrich and Sterling Hayden; Fred Mayer, the real “inglorious bastard” who was nominated for the Medal of Honor; celebrity chef Julia Child, Nobel Peace Prize winner Ralph Bunche, film director John Ford, Pulitzer Prize recipient Arthur Schlesinger Jr. and four CIA directors — William Casey, William Colby, Allen Dulles and Richard Helms. General "Wild Bill" Donovon is standing, fourth from the left in the above photo- he created the OSS in 1942.

Robert Morton, M.Ed., Ed.S. is a member of the Association Of Former Intelligence Officers (AFIO) and writes about the U.S. Intelligence Community (IC) and foreign intelligence agencies. His views are his own and do not reflect those of any organization he is a member of. 

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Russian Spies Are Everywhere!

    
Russian Spy Agency Happenings!: Issue 11/14/16
 
     In this 11/14/16 Issue of "Russian Spy Agency Happenings!" you'll see how Russian spies are virtually everywhere, for the Kremlin has ramped up espionage activities in most Western democracies. Another article describes how Russia's Federal Security Service (FSB) detained two Russian nationals who organized illegal crossings of the border with Finland. There are dozens of articles on all of Russia's spy agencies as well.
     Don't forget to enjoy the three exciting videos in this issue:
  1. A Russian Spy in the NSA: A True Story of Espionage
  2. Russian Spies- Deceitful Beauties: A documentary on a CIA/Double Agent/Spy
  3. The FBI releases their surveillance videos of Russian spy.
     Enjoy and thank you for subscribing to "Russian Spy Agency Happenings!"
 
Robert Morton, M.Ed., Ed.S. is a member of the Association Of Former Intelligence Officers (AFIO) and created this newsletter.

Friday, November 11, 2016

Putin ramps up espionage activities against the U.S. and NATO



 
     The U.S. Intelligence Community (IC) worries over Putin’s cyber-attacks against the DNC, but they’re more concerned about other espionage activities the Kremlin is ramping up.
     In this issue of the "Russian Spy Agency Happenings!" newsletter, we focus on Putin's new aggressiveness in espionage and counterespionage, including a story about Frederico Carvalhão Gil.
     Gil, a high-ranking member of Portugal’s Security Intelligence Service, was arrested for passing secrets to his Russian handler, an officer of Putin’s SVR spy agency. They were six highly-classified documents containing information that is critical to the West’s defense: NATO defense systems and communication infrastructure between member countries and military bases.
 
 
     Gil was followed to Rome by Portuguese counterintelligence officers, since he was already suspected of being a Russian mole planted inside Portugal’s secret intelligence service. As the CI team tailed him, he entered and exited numerous shops, trying to throw them off, or to detect their presence. He failed, thank goodness.
     Both Gil and his Russian handler were arrested, and the top-secret documents were recovered. Because of this and numerous other incidents, it appears Rome, Italy is Russia’s espionage hub and contact place between his SVR agents and the spies they recruit, like Frederico Carvalhão Gil.
     U.S. Intelligence realizes that the Russian SVR has permeated NATO delegations that frequent its headquarters in Brussels. That’s why the size of non-member state delegations at the HQ have been severely limited- to cut down on Russian intelligence officers’ operating inside. Russia had three times as many delegates as any other non-NATO nation operating inside NATO’s Brussels headquarters, and most were there to gather intelligence (Should I say “steal” intelligence?).
     President Trump may want to build a relationship with Putin, but he must realize that the Russian leader is conducting an all-out espionage assault on U.S. allies in Europe. Putin’s Federal Security Service (FSB) has been watched closely by Estonia’s Internal Security Service (ISS).  The ISS found daring attempts to undermine Estonia’s sovereignty by the FSB, such as the 2014 kidnapping of Estonian Internal Security Service officer Eston Kohver.
     They FSB abducted Kohver from inside Estonia, convicted him in a show trial, only to exchange him for an FSB spy arrested in 2012! Lithuania’s intelligence agency warned in its 2015 annual report that Russia infiltrated not only its armed forces, but those of other NATO members as well.
     The Czech Republic’s Security Information Service confirmed large numbers of Russian intelligence operatives are active inside their country.
     Putin’s spy agency reach is far and his spies have recently been caught in Canada, the Czech Republic, France, Germany, and Poland.
     Non-NATO allies have also been targeted. Russian agents spy on Swedish military facilities. They approach Swedish military personnel on a regular basis. Sweden’s security service (Saepo) estimates that one-third of Russia’s diplomats in Stockholm are spies.
     Not surprising, the U.S. busted a Russian spy ring in New York City just last year. They recruited U.S. citizens as spies and stole economic intelligence. In 2010, Russia’s espionage activities briefly came to the forefront of the American public’s attention when the FBI broke up a 10-person Russian spy ring. Then FBI described these Putin-agents as Russia’s "cream of the crop."
     Overseas, American diplomats and NATO officials are continually harassed by Russian agents. An FSB guard recently assaulted an American diplomat outside the U.S. embassy in Moscow. A NATO officer at a Swedish restaurant was threatened by Russian agents who showed him pictures of his family while demanding information on alliance military exercises.
     The Cold War hath raised its ugly head! President Trump will have to put more resources into the U.S. Intelligence Community’s efforts to combat Russian espionage and counterespionage operations.
     Yeah, I know, 9/11 and radical Islam, ISIS, global jihad, etc. Putin took advantage of this tragedy that struck America. He knows where our Intelligence Community focuses its resources.
     It’s time to redeploy our efforts on countering Putin, the intimidator. He’s bolstered his intelligence assets against the U.S. and NATO. President Trump must counter him and, as one American intelligence official put it, “play catch-up big time” with Russia.

SUBSCRIBE TO "OSINT NEWS" FOR U.S. & FOREIGN SPY AGENCY HAPPENINGS!

     Welcome to OSINT NEWS, your portal to timely happenings within the U.S. and foreign intelligence agencies. Subscribe HERE!
     Congratulations! As a member of the OSINT NEWS community, you will immediately receive timely posts when they are published.
     There's more! The 3 resources below offer constant timely updates on happenings within the U.S. and foreign intelligence agencies:

(1) You will automatically receive the 
"Spy Agency Happenings!" newsletter which contains timely articles about important U.S. and foreign intelligence agency events. I search through over 150 U.S. and foreign newspapers and journals and hand-pick relevant items centered around a theme for each newsletter. A confirmation will be emailed to you shortly.  

(2) Visit the narrow right margin whenever you want. It holds a treasure of intelligence agency info. Get timely, often daily updates on happenings within the 17 agencies comprising the U.S. Intelligence Community (IC) by scrolling down the narrow right margin to "U.S. INTELLGENCE COMMUNITY HAPPENENINGS- click agency below". Choose the agency of interest, then below the 17 agencies listed, a list of all daily newspaper, magazine and recent journal articles appears.

(3) Interested in finding out about daily happenings in foreign spy services? Scroll down the narrow right margin to "FOREIGN SPY AGENCY HAPPENINGS". Just like in (2) above, click the foreign intelligence agency of interest and all daily newspaper, magazine and recent journal publications will appear below the list of foreign spy agencies.


Questions? Contact me on the Secure Contact Form

Robert Morton, M.Ed., Ed.S. is a member of the Association Of Former Intelligence
Officers (AFIO) and writes about the U.S. Intelligence Community (IC) and foreign intelligence agencies. His views are his own and do not reflect those of any organization he is a member of.