Information operations · Information Warfare · Russia

Salisbury CW Attack / Syria / Iran / Russia Ad Hoc Update (112)

Anonymous expert compilation, analysis, and reporting.

Watch the Dugin video and listen to his words. He is absolutely convinced the Russian truth is believable. Quite honestly it often seems like a bunch of drunken and high college students at an apres party making chit up.  As it was explained to me two weeks ago, it is their truth, let it be.

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Dugin commentary on “We have our own Russian truth” is simply priceless – we in the West are expected to take this tripe seriously. Some truly bizarre statements by the Vozhd. More discord over pension reform. Russian proxies in Finland where they belong – in the dock. An excellent commentary by Ignatius on Russian covert ops – perhaps it is time for the West to recalibrate how it measures Russian covert ops outcomes.

In the UK, multiple and most interesting disclosures on the Salisbury attack. Ignatius’ observations may well apply here – the messaging element may well be much more important in Muscovy than the operational outcome.

MESA revival? Canberra bureaucracy bignotes itself to media, leaving SECDEF with a political mess to clean up. More IRGC bluster. Wagner PMC takes losses in Syria. Multiple interesting reports on Israel’s effort to enhance air capabilities. More mayhem in Ankara.

Cold War spy secrets: Novichok attack highlights Britain-Russia feud [Aleksandr Dugin: We have our own Russian truth] | Daily Star

BRITAIN and Russia’s relationship has deteriorated since the botched assassination of the Skripals in March.

No Proof of Russian Hand in Skripal Poisoning – German MP – Sputnik International

The reverberations from the Skripal affair, with all its extraordinary twists and turns, show no sign of ending.

Heike Hänsel – Wikipedia

TASS: Russian Politics & Diplomacy – London makes haste to name those responsible for Salisbury incident – Russia’s embassy

«The British authorities’ policy does not bring us closer to finding the truth in these mysterious incidents», a spokesperson for the Russian embassy to London said

Putin: Christianity is the foundation of the Russian state – ABC News

Calls adoption of Christianity the starting point for forming Russia itself.

UAWire – Putin calls for alternative to US dollar

The dollar’s status as the universal reserve currency “is becoming a problem” for the world economy, said Russian President Vladimir Putin at a …

UAWire – Putin speaks of Trump’s ‘big advantage’

Russian President Vladimir Putin said that the American leader Donald Trump’s big advantage is his desire to fulfill pre-election promises, …

UAWire – Kremlin calls Russian agent Butina detained in the US ‘a political prisoner’

Maria Butina, who is detained in the US on suspicion of working as a foreign agent, is a political prisoner, stated at a press briefing the …

UAWire – Russia wants to restrict travel abroad

Members of Russia’s State Duma have proposed to tighten the legislation governing citizens’ travels abroad. The amendments to the law “On entry …

UAWire – Media: Trump and Putin have reached an agreement on partition of Kosovo

In a summit in Helsinki, US President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin reached an agreement on a possible partition of the …

How Vladimir Putin Will Take Down Donald Trump When He’s No Longer Useful

Putin could sink Trump with leaks of secret Russian loans, collusion in 2016.

Sometimes It Rains Rockets in Russia – Bloomberg

Inhabitants of tiny villages 250 miles north of a Russian launch pad transform fallen space metal into everyday necessities.

Thousands Protest Against Hike In Russia’s Retirement Age

Tens of thousands of Russians rallied across the country on July 28 to protest against a controversial plan to raise the retirement age. Legislation now under consideration would raise the retirement age to 65 for men by 2028 and 63 for women by 2034. Currently, the retirement age for men and women is 60 and 55 years, respectively. Russia’s Communist Party was the main organizer of the rallies, but supporters of opposition leader Aleksei Navalny, the Open Russia foundation, and other groups took part in the rallies, too. Protests took place in dozens of cities and towns across the country.

Thousands Of Russians Protest Against Hike In Retirement Age

Tens of thousands of Russians have rallied across the country to protest against a controversial plan to raise the retirement age.

Russia’s navy parade: Show but how much substance? – CNN

Russia put on a show of its naval might Sunday, sending 40 warships through waters near St. Petersburg in a display that promises to be strong on optics but one that may mask key weaknesses.

Finland : Pro-Kremlin activists on trial in Finland for harassing reporter – To Inform is to Influence

Full disclosure, I consider Jessikka Aro a friend.   Jessikka is, without a doubt, one of the most courageous people I have ever met.   This whole thing started for me when I reviewed an article she had written. This is What Pro-Russia Internet Propaganda Feels Like – Finns Have Been Tricked into Believing in Lies . After this…

This is not your grandfather’s KGB – To Inform is to Influence

By David Ignatius Columnist  July 26 at 7:37 PM  Looking at Russia’s competing spy services, their overlapping operations against the United States and their sometimes careless tradecraft, some CIA veterans are wondering if the Russian spooks actually want to get caught. The truth is, President Vladimir Putin probably doesn’t mind that his intelligence activities are so blatant…

Police ‘fear second batch of deadly nerve agent could be on British streets’ after Salisbury poisonings

Investigators are looking into theory two teams of Russian hitmen were behind the attack

Salisbury investigators believe MORE deadly novichok dumped on streets by two teams of Russian hitmen – Mirror Online

EXCLUSIVE: Counter terror police are working on a theory that more than one team of hitmen were responsible

‘Two teams of Russian hitmen were behind Salisbury Novichok attack’ | Daily Mail Online

Police are working on the theory that one team arrived in Britain to plant the nerve agent weeks before Sergei Skripal, 67, and his daughter Yulia, 33, were poisoned in March.

Novichok victim Dawn Sturgess ‘poisoned by two Russian hitmen teams’ | Daily Star

AT least two teams of Russian hitmen are to blame for the UK Novichok poisoning which has left one woman dead and four hospitalised, counter-terror police believe.

Mercedes with Romanian number plates was seen near poisoned Russian spy Sergei Skripal’s house | Daily Mail Online

Police hunting the would-be assassins who poisoned Mr Skripal and his daughter Yulia in March have been scouring CCTV footage from a Shell garage in Salisbury where the Mercedes was seen.

Trump seeks to revive ‘Arab NATO’ to confront Iran | Reuters

The Trump administration is quietly pushing ahead with a bid to create a new security and political alliance with six Gulf Arab states, Egypt and Jordan, in part to counter Iran’s expansion in the region, according to U.S. and Arab officials.

Trump Seeks to Revive ‘Arab NATO’ to Confront Iran | World News | US News

By Yara Bayoumy, Jonathan Landay and Warren Strobel WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Trump administration is quietly pushing ahead with a bid to create a new security and political alliance with six Gulf Arab states, Egypt and Jordan, in part to counter Iran’s expansion in the region, according to U.S. and Arab officials. The White House wants to see deeper cooperation between the countries on missile defense, military training, counter-terrorism and other issues such as strengthening regional economic and diplomatic ties, four sources said. The plan to forge what officials in the White House and Middle East have called an “Arab NATO” of Sunni Muslim allies will likely raise tensions between the United States and Shi’ite Iran, two countries increasingly at odds since President Donald Trump took office. The administration’s hope is that the effort, tentatively known as the Middle East Strategic Alliance (MESA), might be discussed at a summit provisionally scheduled for Washington on Oct. 12-13, several sources said. The White House confirmed it was working on the concept of the alliance with “our regional partners now and have been for several months.” Saudi officials raised the idea of a security pact ahead of a Trump visit last year to Saudi Arabia where he announced a massive arms deal, but the alliance proposal did not get off the ground, a U.S. source said. Sources from some of the Arab countries involved also said they were aware of renewed efforts to activate the plan. Officials from other potential participants did not respond to requests for comment. “MESA will serve as a bulwark against Iranian aggression, terrorism, extremism, and will bring stability to the Middle East,” a spokesperson for the White House’s National Security Council said.

Donald Trump could be ready to order a strike against Iran, Australian Government figures say – Politics – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Senior figures in the Turnbull Government say they believe the Trump administration is prepared to bomb Iran’s nuclear facilities, perhaps as early as next month, and say Australia is poised to help identify possible targets.

Aussie officials: Trump could be ready to order strike against Iran

A Free Press For A Free People Since 1997

Mattis says ABC’s Iran report is ‘fiction’ – 9News

US Defense Secretary James Mattis says he has “no idea” how an Australian news report claiming the US is re…

US Defence Secretary James Mattis says reports America preparing to strike Iran are ‘fiction’ – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

US Defence Secretary James Mattis describes reports America is preparing to strike Iran as fiction, after senior figures in the Turnbull Government tell the ABC they believe the US is prepared to bomb Iran’s nuclear facilities.

James Mattis says ABC report about US bombing Iran was made up | Daily Mail Online

US Defense Secretary General James Mattis has dismissed as ‘fiction’ an Australian media report claiming American forces were prepared to bomb Iran’s nuclear facilities as early as next month.

Mattis denies report US is planning missile strike against Iran | TheHill

Defense Secretary James Mattis on Friday disputed a news report that the U.S. is preparing military action against Iran, calling it “fiction.”

Mattis: We’re not seeking regime change in Iran – Israel National News

Defense Secretary says U.S. hasn’t instituted a policy of regime change or collapse in Iran.

Mattis says US not seeking regime change in Iran | The Times of Israel

Defense chief also dismisses Australian report of upcoming American strike on Iranian nuclear facilities as ‘fiction’

Jim Mattis the unflappable: From Russia to Iran to Turkey, all is well

The world may be fraught with tension and turmoil, but in the world of Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, there’s nothing to see here.

Iran general ‘thirsty for martyrdom’ issues threat to Donald Trump | Daily Star

AN IRANIAN general has issued a chilling threat to Donald Trump, warning him that war against his country would spell the “destruction of all your possibilities”.

Iranian General Locks Horns With Trump, Escalating Threat-Filled Feud – The New York Times

Qassim Suleimani, the shadowy commander of Iran’s paramilitary Quds Force, ridiculed President Trump’s Twitter warning as “cabaret-style rhetoric.”

Iran general makes ominous threat in response to Donald Trump tweet

Major General Qassem Soleiman of Iran threatened President Donald Trump that if the U.S. dares to attack Iran, it will “destroy all that you possess.”

Soleimani: Red Sea No Longer Safe | Asharq AL-awsat

Middle-East Arab News and Opinion – Asharq Al-Awsat is the world’s premier pan-Arab daily newspaper, printed simultaneously each day on four continents in 14 cities

US and allies considering options to protect key shipping lanes from Iranian aggression – CNNPolitics

As tensions between the US and Iran ratchet up, the Trump administration is looking at what military options may be needed to keep vital waterways in the Middle East open in the wake of attacks on Saudi oil tankers by Iranian-backed Houthi rebels on July 25, according to two administration officials.

Another critical oil chokepoint is in firing line after Iran threats

Houthi rebels in Yemen, with support from Tehran, have been ramping up attacks on Saudi oil tankers in the Bab el Mandeb Strait, the world’s fourth-largest oil chokepoint.  As tensions with the US grow, this is only set to intensify.

Washington Monthly | When Do We Attack Iran?

Iran is much smarter than Trump – The Washington Post

The mother of all Iran policies: petulant tweets and wishful thinking.

Iran woos local investors as U.S. sanctions loom, currency falls | Reuters

Iran plans to offer price and tax incentives to private investors to take over idle state projects and help boost the economy, state media reported on Saturday, as the country faces likely U.S. sanctions and the exit of many foreign companies.

Giuliani, Bolton Repeatedly Met With Group Formerly Designated a Cult-Like Terror Organization – TYT Network

UAWire – Ukrainian Security Service: More than 180 Russian mercenaries killed or wounded in Syria in February

During the offensive in Syria in February 2018, at least 80 mercenaries from the so-called Wagner Private Military Company (PMC) were killed and …

Israel’s Divisions are more Clear Under Netanyahu’s New Homeland Law | The National Interest

The declaration of Israel as the homeland of the Jews automatically ostracizes Israeli Arabs.

New BMP-3s of Iraqi Armed forces spotted at Kurganmashzavod’s facility – Defence Blog

The new BMP-3 infantry fighting vehicles of Iraqi Armed forces were seen at the Russian “Kurganmashzavod” JSC military-industrial complex in the Kurgan. The new BMP-3 infantry fighting vehicles in sand-coloured camouflage were spotted during the visit of the Russian delegation to the Kurganmashzavod plant. The “Voyennyy Osvedomitel” has speculated that it could be new fighting vehicles that were ordered by Iraq’s army. Some source reported that Iraq has ordered several hundred new BMP-3 infantry fighting vehicles. About three hundred combat vehicles will be delivered to Iraq in the period 2018 and 2022. Iraq’s army will be received an advanced version of the BMP-3 infantry fighting vehicle (IFV) with add-on armour kit is fitted. The upgraded infantry fighting vehicle BMP-3 was designed on the basis of the BMP-3 IFV operation experience in various regions of the world and modern demands for infantry fighting vehicles. As compared with the BMP-3 infantry fighting vehicle the upgraded BMP-3 features enhanced fire power, mobility, protection and ergonomics resulting in higher combat efficiency.

Israel looks at massive military aircraft purchase from US firm Boeing | The Times of Israel

$11 billion deal, to be paid from US military aid, would replace outdated transport helicopters and refueling planes, add a squadron of stealthier F-15s to Air Force arsenal

Pompeo blindsided by latest Trump tweets | Euronews

Trump’s threats against ally were a surprise to Secretary of State Pompeo, who’s been trying to free U.S. pastor detained in Turkey.

Russia and West spar over reconstruction of Syria | Fox News

Russia and the West sparred over the reconstruction of Syria on Friday as its military forces continue to capture opposition-held territory and Syrians express hope that the country’s seven-year civil war is nearing an end.

UAWire – Russia issues arrest warrants for Syrian militants who shot down and killed Su-25 pilot

Moscow’s Basmanny District Court approved the arrest in absentia of three Syrian citizens involved in the destruction of the Russian Su-25 …

Israel expected to buy upgraded version of the F-15 Fighter aircraft – Defence Blog

Israel is expected to make a decision over the purchase of a squadron of an upgraded version of the F-15 Fighter aircraft, The Times of Israel reported on 28 July. The Israeli Air Force would receive newest F-15 fighter jets as part of the largest-ever acquisition in an $11 billion deal. The deal appears set to include a squadron of F-15 fighter jets with upgraded stealth features, a squadron of cargo helicopters and aerial refueling planes, according to a report in the Israel Hayom daily. The new version of the fighter jet to be dubbed IA for “Israel Advanced” and would be an upgraded version of the F-15 aircraft that would include certain stealth capabilities, such as radar-absorbing paint and internal weapons carriage. A navigation pod will also be fitted to the aircraft providing it with all-weather and night-attack capabilities. The aircraft will also feature advanced electronic equipment including digital electronic warfare system and active electronically scanned array radar. The purchase will be funded from US military aid money, which comes to some $3.8 billion annually. According to military officials, also will be acquiring CH-47 Chinook, V-22 Osprey helicopters, and refueling planes.

Get Ready, Iran: Israel Has an Air-Launched Ballistic Missile | The National Interest

With Rampage, the Israeli air force could join a slowly growing number of air arms developing ALBMs for non-nuclear attacks.

How Israel Could Become a Superpower in the Air: B-52 Bombers? | The National Interest

In 2014, an op-ed suggested that very idea. How would it work? Would it be a good idea?

Turkish president’s spokesman: US needs to take Turkey’s security concerns ‘seriously’ | TheHill

The spokesman for Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said Saturday that the relationship between the U.S. and Turkey can continue if the U.S. addresses Turkey’s security concerns.

Erdogan: Turkey will stand its ground faced with U.S. sanctions – media | Reuters

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said Turkey will stand its ground after U.S. President Donald Trump threatened to slap sanctions on Ankara if it does not free an American pastor, broadcaster Haberturk reported on Sunday.

US, Turkey discuss detained US pastor after Trump threat | Fox News

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has spoken to his Turkish counterpart about an American pastor detained on terrorism and espionage charges.

🇪🇬 Egypt: Cairo court sentences 75 protesters to death | Al Jazeera English – YouTube

Al Jazeera English Published on Jul 28, 2018 Seventy-five anti-government protesters in Egypt have been sentenced to death. They were convicted for their involvement in a sit-in protest in Rabaa Square five years ago against the military coup which deposed the country’s first democratically elected president, Mohammed Morsi. Critics saying the latest verdict is unfair and the convicted deserve a fair trial. Al Jazeera’s Paul Chaderjian reports.