Information operations · Information Warfare · Russia

Salisbury CW Attack / Syria / Iran / Russia Ad Hoc Update (113)

Anonymous expert compilation, analysis, and reporting.

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While Russia self-destabilizes, in no small part the result of over-indulgence in Dugin’s “Russian truth”, blowback from Helsinki seems to be gathering momentum. Browder exposes further Russian mischief in yet another Western nation.

In the UK funeral arrangements for the GRU victim will see CW agent precautions. Fewer children of wealthy Russian families now studying in the UK.

Iran’s currency in free-fall. Much criticism of POTUS’ play with Iran, while NYM did figure out that the US is encouraging Tehran to jump off the very same cliff Tehran climbed upon. More on Turkey. US oil exports ramp up.

UK Police Believe 2 Groups From Russia Organized Poisoning of Skripals – Reports – Sputnik International

MOSCOW (Sputnik) – UK police believe that two groups from Russia were hired to organize and carry out the poisoning of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in March, the Mirror reported Sunday.

Thousands of Russians Chant ‘Putin Is A Thief’ in Anti-Government Protests

Russian President Vladimir Putin’s approval ratings have dipped after his government moved to increase the country’s retirement age from 60 to 65 for men, and from 55 to 63 for women.

Protesters chant anti-Putin slogans at Moscow rally against retirement age plan | Reuters

Thousands protested in central Moscow on Sunday against a proposed increase to the retirement age and the crowd chanted slogans critical of President Vladimir Putin whose approval ratings have been dented by the bill.

3 arrested after Russian opposition rally on pension age | Fox News

Three Russian opposition leaders were detained by police minutes after a demonstration to protest a government plan to raise the age for receiving state retirement pensions ended Sunday.

Navalny Aide Among Three Arrested At Protest In Moscow Against Retirement Age Hike

Three people, including a top aide to Russian opposition leader Aleksei Navalny, were arrested as thousands protested in central Moscow for a second consecutive day against a highly controversial plan to raise the retirement age.

Navalny Aide, Others Released After Arrests At Moscow Protest

Three people, including a top aide to Russian opposition leader Aleksei Navalny, were released from custody after being arrested as thousands of people protested in central Moscow for a second day …

UAWire – Russia approves VAT increase to 20%

At a plenary meeting on Saturday, July 28, Russia’s Federation Council approved a bill providing for an increase in the value-added tax (VAT) …

Russian outcry over prison brutality video – BBC News

A leaked video showed Russian prison guards viciously beating an inmate in handcuffs.

Evidence of torture in Russia prison – BBC News

A video showing more than a dozen prison officers beating a prisoner prompted demands for justice.

Sunday Night claims links between Australian banks and Russian criminals

ON A cool evening in November 2012, a Russian exile named Alexander Perepilichnyy sets out from his $12 million mansion outside London for his daily jog. Mr Perepilichnyy is a wealthy man, thanks to a long career as money-launderer to Moscow’s elite. But today he’s worried — and with good reason. He’s just blown the whistle on his former employers in the Russian mafia. And now detectives at Scotland Yard have delivered bad news — they’ve found a detailed dossier on his movements in the home of a notorious Chechen hitman. Mr Perepilichnyy sets off down the quiet country lane at a steady pace. He’s 44, and in good shape. There’s no one about. St Georges Hill, in Surrey, is a high-security, gated estate where celebrities and bankers pay to live in seclusion. John Lennon and Ringo Starr once owned houses just down the road. There are no witnesses to what happens next. A passing security guard finds the Russian collapsed in the road, trembling and making choking noises. A green-yellow bile is foaming from his mouth. By the time paramedics arrive, Alexander Perepilichnyy is dead. In the days that follow, local police will declare it a simple heart attack and stamp the file “not suspicious”.

Lindsey Graham on North Korea negotiations, Russia sanctions | Fox News Video

Senator Lindsey Graham discusses efforts to denuclearize North Korea, protecting American elections and Michael Cohen tapes on ‘Sunday Morning Futures.’

U.S. sanctions against Russia not working, new restrictive measures in the pipeline – senator | UNIAN

U.S. Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham has said U.S. sanctions imposed against Russia are not working, therefore new restrictive measures are in the pipeline. Graham said the president met with the National Security Council on Friday, ordering them to harden electoral infrastructure against Russia and other actors for 2018.

Putin Attends Navy Day Parade

Russian President Vladimir Putin reviewed a St. Petersburg parade marking Russian Navy Day on July 29. The annual display on the Neva River featured 39 warships and 4,000 service members.

Putin leads Russia’s Navy Day celebrations as country shows off its huge fleet

Forty warships were sent through the waters near St Petersburg in a show of strength from Russia’s Navy

More than 40 warships take part in Russia’s Navy Day parade | Daily Mail Online

The annual Navy Day parade which this year in the waters surrounding St Petersburg in the north-west of Russia saw 40 hulking vessels performing maneuvers in front of the President.

Russia Rapidly Expanding Navy With 26 New Ships By End of 2018, Putin Says

Putin said that expanding the naval fleet would ensure “high combat readiness” and increase Russia’s “fighting capacity.”

Deputy Prime Minister Borisov: it is necessary to upgrade old tanks instead of purchasing “Armata”

The Russian Armed Forces do not aspire to purchase the tanks of “Armata” in bulk because of their high cost, Deputy Prime Minister Yury Borisov, responsible for the defense industry, told reporters. Earlier it was reported that the cost of one tank on the platform of “Armata” during mass production will be about 250 million rubles. “Well, why flood the Armed Forces with all the armed forces, we have the T-72 in great demand on the market, they take it all, compared to the Abrams, Leclercs and Leopards at a price, efficiency and quality, significantly surpasses “, – said Mr. Borisov. In addition to “Armata”, the armed forces do not need to buy a large number of “Boomerangs” (wheeled BTR of a new generation), the deputy prime minister is sure. “We have no special need for this. These models are quite expensive in relation to existing ones, “he said. According to Yuri Borisov, the modernization of old equipment requires less money, this saves budgetary funds. “We succeed, having a budget ten times less than NATO countries, due to such effective solutions, when we look at the modernization potential of old models, to solve the tasks set,” Yury Borisov said. Recall, the T-14 tank based on the universal crawler platform “Armata” was developed at Uralvagonzavod. It was first introduced in 2015. The Ministry of Defense of Russia already by the end of 2016 concluded the first contract for the supply of 100 such tanks. In August 2017, the state corporation Rostek was informed that the Defense Ministry will receive a massive tank of Armata from 2019 onwards. At that moment the tank was at the final stage of completion.

Novichok: Safety measures at victim Dawn Sturgess’ funeral – BBC News

The vicar leading the service says there will be no pallbearers following advice from health officials.

Dawn Sturgess funeral: No pallbearers for Novichok victim as safety measures ‘protect mourners’ in Salisbury

Novichok victim Dawn Sturgess’s coffin will already be in place when mourners arrive at her funeral and will have no pallbearers, as a number of safety measures are put in place to protect the public.

Novichok poisoning: No pallbearers at funeral of British woman

Dawn Sturgess, 44, died July 7, a week after she and her partner Charlie Rowley were found unconscious in the town of Amesbury in southern England. Authorities say they were also poisoned with the nerve agent Novichok.

Novichok victim Dawn Sturgess laid to rest at funeral as mourners are ‘banned from touching coffin’

Dawn Sturgess’ coffin has arrived at Salisbury Crematorium in Wiltshire

Novichok: Safety measures in place for victim’s funeral – CNN

Safety measures will be in place to protect mourners at the funeral of Novichok victim Dawn Sturgess on Monday, the Rev. Philip Bromiley told CNN.

Dawn Sturgess has ‘special precautions’ put in place at funeral to ensure mourner’s safety | Daily Mail Online

Special health measures have been imposed on the funeral of Novichok victim Dawn Sturgess today to prevent mourners from being exposed to the nerve agent at her Salisbury funeral.

Strict safeguards to protect mourners from exposure to nerve agent at victim’s funeral | UK | News |

SPECIAL safety measures are in place to protect mourners at the funeral of novichok victim Dawn Sturgess today. Public Health England has issued advice to prevent mourners from being exposed to the nerve agent that led to the death of the mother-of-three from Amesbury, Wiltshire.

Salisbury Novichok poisoning: Russia teams dumped MORE deadly poison | Daily Star

POLICE believe Brits are not safe walking their own streets – with a second batch of deadly Novichok still in circulation.

There could be more deadly Novichok poison in Salisbury | Metro News

Counter-terror police reportedly believe at least two teams of Russian hitmen were responsible for poisoning Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia with the nerve agent in March.

Russian oligarchs are now pulling their children out of British private schools | Daily Mail Online

A sharp decline in the number of Russian pupils being taught in the UK has been recorded. This has been worsened by the nerve agent attack against Sergei Skripal and his daughter in Salisbury.

Russian oligarchs are deserting Britain’s public schools, as the economic reality of the new Cold War starts to bite

Rich Russian oligarchs are deserting Britain’s public schools, as the economic reality of the new cold war starts to bite.

Wealthy Russians pull out of Britain’s public schools | News | The Times

Fewer rich Russians are sending their children to British public schools, in a trend that an MP has linked to heightened tensions between London and Moscow.Surveys by the Independent Schools Council (ISC), which represents 1,300 private schools, indicate a decline over three years. There were 3,611

Iran’s Rial at Historic Low as U.S. Sanctions Loom – WSJ

Iran’s local currency hit another record low against the U.S. dollar, extending a historic slide on concerns about new sanctions due to be imposed next week.

Iran’s Rial Is In A Death Spiral, Again

Iran’s rial plunged from 98,000 IRR/USD on Saturday to 112,000 IRR/USD on Sunday on Tehran’s Ferdowsi Street. That stunning 12.5% one-day plunge has pushed the rial into a classic death spiral.

Iran currency extends record fall as U.S. sanctions loom | Reuters

Iran’s currency hit a new record low on Sunday, dropping past 100,000 rials to the U.S. dollar as Iranians brace for Aug. 7 when Washington is due to reimpose a first lot of economic sanctions.

Iran’s Currency Continues Downward Spiral As U.S. Sanctions Loom

Iran’s currency hit a new low on July 29 amid a deepening economic crisis and the imminent return of U.S. sanctions that were lifted under the 2015 nuclear deal between Tehran and world powers.

Iran’s currency plunges to record low as US sanctions loom | News | Al Jazeera

Rial has lost half its value since April amid weak economy and big demand for dollars by Iranians fearful of sanctions.

‘Enemies’ destroying Iran’s economy, central bank chief says –

The head of the Iranian central bank said it was monitoring the swift devaluation of its currency, the rial, as U.S. economic pressure on the country mounts.

US provocations present opportunity for Iran | The Strategist

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s provocative speech on 22 July that attacked Iran’s leadership and policies, and prompted a brief but hostile exchange between President Hassan Rouhani and President Donald Trump about the threat of war, has provided an opportunity for Rouhani to seize the initiative and sell himself and the Iranian government, domestically and internationally, as genuinely moderate and committed to reformist policies. If Rouhani grasps the challenge, two credibility tests will apply: are those policies truly reformist and, if so, will he have the support of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and the military to implement them? Pompeo’s speech was wide-ranging and blunt. He painted the expected canvas—accusing Iran’s theocratic and military leadership of mafia-like corruption, of sponsoring terrorism regionally and in Europe, of regional destabilization, and of seeking to destroy Israel—and implied that Iran wasn’t genuinely committed to the nuclear deal. He also accused the leadership of human rights abuses (citing multiple political detainees as evidence) and suppression of religious minorities. Pompeo was heavily dismissive of Rouhani and the moderates, describing them as ‘violent Islamic revolutionaries with an anti-America, anti-West agenda’ and being neither true moderates nor statesmen. He didn’t differentiate between the moderates and hardliners, or acknowledge that the supreme leader, not Rouhani, commands Iran’s armed forces and security services. He effectively challenged the moderates, including Rouhani, to prove they have the will and capability to implement change.

Trump’s Iran Strategy: Regime Change on the Cheap

The Trump administration wants to overthrow the Iranian government, but rather than going to war, they are trying to encourage the Iranian public to do it for the U.S. Even if the plan is successful, it’s unlikely to end well.

Direct warfare with the US is out of the question for Iran, analysts say — here’s why

Iran has a range of non-conventional tools at its disposal to harm U.S. interests, many of which have long been in play and whose deployment is now likely to intensify.

Instead of crafting a strategy on Iran, Trump plays with the lion’s tail – Syria –

In his battle of wits with Rohani, Trump blinked first. Like Israel, Washington mistakenly believes that tactical strikes on Iranian targets and threats on Twitter can get Iran out of Syria

Mysterious attack on Saudi oil tanker heats up U.S.-Iranian front – World News –

Washington fears Iranian-led attack on troops in Iraq ■ Israeli politicians say fight to stop Iran in Syria proved successful, but the military remains skeptical

PM shoots down ABC over Iran attack report

Malcolm Turnbull has considered lodging another formal complaint against the ABC in a new escalation of tensions between the organization and the government, raising further questions about editorial oversight at the public broadcaster.

Russia, Iran, Turkey Set To Meet In Sochi For Syria Discussions

Russia, Iran, and Turkey, co-sponsors of Syrian peace talks held periodically in Kazakhstan, will meet on July 30-31 in the Russian Black Sea resort of Sochi to discuss issues related to the seven-…

How Iran enlists Afghans to fight for Assad in Syria – The Washington Post

Interviews with Afghan Shiite combat veterans offer a rare glimpse into the multinational fight in Syria.

Israeli Arab MP resigns over controversial ‘nation state’ law – BBC News

Israeli Arab Zouheir Bahloul quits the Knesset over the law which declares Israel a Jewish state.

Fight for these State Department workers detained in Turkey – The Washington Post

Three Turkish employees have been detained on bogus charges. The United States should fight for their freedom.

Turkey leader Erdogan warns US over sanctions threat in pastor case | Fox News

Turkey President Recep Tayyip Erdogan warned the U.S. not to impose sanctions against his government over the ongoing imprisonment of an American pastor accused of espionage and terror-related charges.

U.S. Crude Oil Production And Exports Soar To Record Highs

Oil prices have dominated the energy discussion over the past few weeks. No one really knows what direction they will take, but we do know that U.S. crude oil production and exports continue to break ceilings.