Information operations · Information Warfare · Russia

Russia / Strategy Ad Hoc Media Update (89)


Anonymous expert compilation, analysis, and reporting

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  1. Russia and post-Soviet nation updates. The descent continues.
  2. Middle East updates – Tehran has stolen most media bandwidth this week.
  3. Much on DPRK, China and Pacrim – especially interesting reports on the military context, trade war, G20, HK and regional nations.
  4. UK, Germany, G20, Venezuela updates;
  5. Influence and cyber reports – the RPi report is fascinating;
  6. US domestic media – much on policy and OSD

Russia / Russophone Reports


Dirty Tricks: Navalny Aide’s Bid For Moscow Duma Seat Brings Out The Worst

Lyubov Sobol, a driving force of Aleksei Navalny’s Anti-Corruption Foundation, is among the outsiders hoping to break United Russia’s monopoly hold over the Moscow city council. But forces tied to Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin seem to be pulling out all the stops to derail her.
‘The emperor has no clothes’ Russian political scientist Valery Solovey says he lost his prestigious job in Moscow academia ‘for political reasons’ — Meduza
Political scientist and historian Valery Solovey has left his position as the chair of the Public Relations Department at the Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO). Solovey says he stepped down “for political reasons.” Though the decision was reached unofficially in late May, Solovey only announced it on June 19 in a Facebook post. Spokespeople for MGIMO have been guarded about the scholar’s departure. In his many lectures and public appearances, Valery Solovey has repeatedly predicted radical changes coming to Russia, such as Vladimir Putin leaving the presidency early, nationwide mass protests, and restrictions on Russians traveling abroad. Meduza’s Vladislav Gorin spoke to Solovey about being forced from MGIMO and his various prognostications, including his latest about a revolution coming next year to Russia.
Federal police find violations in local counterparts’ handling of Golunov arrest — Meduza
Ivan Golunov was released on June 11 after the attempted drug distribution charges against him were dropped for lack of evidence, but the case under which he was charged lives on as a vehicle for police to investigate where the drugs came from. The case materials were transferred today to citywide prosecutors in Moscow for later transfer to the federal Investigative Committee.
Beyond Golunov How Moscow and St. Petersburg protested against police overreach and political repressions on June 23 — Meduza
On June 23, demonstrators gathered around Russia to protest political repressions and police fabrication of criminal cases. In central Moscow, a march organized by the Libertarian Party and the Union of Journalists and Media Workers attracted between 1,800 and 3,900 people according to police and organizers, respectively. Six protesters, including artist Artyom Loskutov, were arrested at the end of the event. In St. Petersburg, protesters had not received a permit from local authorities, and three of them were arrested. Sasha Sulim and Pavel Merzlikin observed the day’s goings-on in Moscow and St. Petersburg, respectively.
Protests against jail for Russian teenage ‘abuse victims’ – BBC News
Women are protesting about two cases in which teenagers face prison after acting in “self-defence”.
Associate Of Former Russian Lawmaker Detained On Embezzlement Charges
Russian investigators have detained a business associate of a former lawmaker who clashed with the Kremlin about its policies in Ukraine and other places.
‘I defended my life as well as I could’ Meet the Moscow teen trying to educate women about their rights when sexually assaulted, as she faces felony charges for protecting herself — Meduza
A 19-year-old woman in Moscow named Darya Ageniy has launched a new campaign on social media in support of victims of sexual violence. She says she survived an attack last summer in the city of Tuapse, where an intoxicated local man tried to rape her. In self-defense, Darya stabbed the man with a pencil sharpening knife, leading to an investigation in which she is a suspect. If convicted, she faces time in prison. The man in question denies forcing himself onto Darya, saying that he only wanted to read poetry to her. Meduza special correspondent Pavel Merzlikin spoke to Darya Ageniy about the felony case against her and about how her Internet project might change Russians’ perceptions of sexual violence.
‘I was a celebrity in jail’ An interview with the Russian video game developer who bought F-16 manuals on eBay and went to jail in Utah for it — Meduza
On June 19, 42-year-old flight simulation developer Oleg Tishchenko was sentenced in the United States. In 2011, he had purchased instruction manuals for the American F-16 fighter jet model on eBay. Five years later, the U.S. government brought criminal charges, and in early 2019, Tishchenko was extradited after he flew to Georgia for a dance festival. The game developer, who was tried in Utah, could have faced more than 10 years in prison for conspiracy to commit an offense against the United States, violating the Arms Export Control Act, and smuggling. However, some of the charges against him were dropped, and the court counted the year he had spent in jail since his capture in Georgia toward his one-year sentence. Following Tishchenko’s immediate release, he was deported to Russia, where we asked him about the charges he faced and his life behind bars in the U.S. and Georgia.
Russian Judge Denies Reprieve For Sisters Who Killed Abusive Father
A judge in Moscow has extended pre-trial restrictions for three sisters who have acknowledged stabbing their father to death following years of domestic abuse, in a case that has fueled a split in …
Head Of Russia’s Volatile Ingushetia Region Resigns Amid Border-Deal Tensions With Chechnya
The head of Russia’s volatile North Caucasus region of Ingushetia, Yunus-Bek Yevkurov, has announced his resignation after almost 11 years in the position.
Russian Investigators Open Probe Of Former Lawmaker, Car Dealer Businessman
Russian investigators have opened a criminal probe into a former lawmaker who clashed with the Kremlin about its policies in Ukraine and other places.
Tall Tales From A Russian Elk-Milk Farm
The Sumarokovo Elk Farm is one of the few in Russia that milk Eurasian elk, which are a close relative of the much larger moose. Russian elk are also associated with a tall tale about Stalin wanting to use elk instead of horses for cavalry.
Two People Die In Siberia In Floods Triggered By Heavy Rains
Two people have died in Siberia during floods caused by heavy rains, local authorities say.
‘Phoenix’ Aurora Spreads Its ‘Wings’ Over Abandoned Military Power Station in Russia
More than 4,000 photographers shot for the moon (and beyond) for the Astronomy Photographer of the Year competition in the U.K.
Russian Cosmonaut, North American Astronauts Return To Earth
A Soyuz spacecraft carrying a Russian cosmonaut and two astronauts from the United States and Canada has returned to Earth.
Navalny Associate Beaten By Unknown Assailant In St. Petersburg
The coordinator of Russian opposition politician and anti-corruption campaigner Aleksei Navalny’s St. Petersburg office says has been beaten by an unknown attacker.

Central Asia / Caucasus Reports

 


 

U.S. Removes Uzbekistan From Nations With Worst Religious Tolerance
The United States has removed Uzbekistan from a list of countries with the worst religious tolerance for the first time in more than a decade as its new president courts Western nations.

Belarus Reports

 


 

Lukashenka Declares European Games Open In Belarusian Capital
Belarusian President Alyaksandr Lukashenka declared the second European Games open in his country’s capital as a “flame of peace” was lit and fireworks were fired from the top of Dinamo Stadium.
Belarusian Lawmakers Approve Mass Amnesty Bill
The lower chamber of the Belarusian parliament, the House of Representatives, has approved a mass amnesty that will apply to 6,000 convicts and individuals under investigation.

 


 

Russia / Iran / Syria / Iraq / OEF Reports

 


EXCLUSIVE: Countries May Begin Backfilling US Troops in Syria Within Weeks, Envoy Says – Defense One

          In an exclusive interview, Amb. Jim Jeffrey also confirmed a breakthrough agreement that could restart the Geneva peace process.
U.S. forces prepare to evacuate contractors from Iraqi base: military sources – Reuters
U.S. forces are preparing to evacuate hundreds of staff working for Lockheed Martin Corp and Sallyport Global from an Iraqi military base where they work as contractors, three Iraqi military sources said on Friday.
‘Jihadi Jack’ parents guilty of funding terrorism – BBC News
John Letts and Sally Lane sent £223 to their son Jack despite concerns he had joined the Islamic State group.
No Country For ISIS Brides
Thousands of women from all over the world traveled to Iraq and Syria to help the Islamic State extremist group. Some took their children; others gave birth there. And now, with Islamic State fighters mostly defeated, they are stranded. Their countries of origin all face the same problem: what to do with them?
Erdogan’s Purges Leave Turkey’s Justice System Reeling – The New York Times
Around 4,000 judges have been purged since a failed 2016 coup and replaced with inexperienced judges operating in a climate of fear.
‘Divorced from reality’: Palestinians reject US economic plan | Israeli–Palestinian conflict News | Al Jazeera
US urges Palestinian officials to think outside the ‘traditional box’ after boycott of Bahrain economic workshop.
Trump peace plan conference is blip on Israel’s radar as political, Iran crises swirl – Reuters
A U.S.-led conference in Bahrain designed to drum up investment in the Palestinian economy and pave a path to peace with Israel has gone largely unremarked by Israelis preoccupied with a political crisis and their arch-foe Iran.
Egypt’s Economy Isn’t Tanking. It’s Thriving. – Foreign Policy
A recent article warned that the country faced imminent economic collapse. A careful reading of the economic data shows that reforms have placed it on a path to growth.
Libyan warlord praised by Trump is sued in U.S. for alleged rights abuses, war crimes
Libyan families are suing renegade general Khalifa Haftar in Virginia for alleged “terrorist activities” and war crimes over the deaths of their loved ones.
‘Big loss’: Libya’s UN-recognised government retakes key town | Libya News | Al Jazeera
Government of National Accord has wrested Gharyan from Khalifa Haftar’s forces, capturing troops.
Air Force member Jamie Christopher Sponaugle released from Libya after flying Mirage F-1 combat jet over army – CBS News
Jamie Christopher Sponaugle allegedly crashed while flying a mercenary mission over Libya
Gaza ‘balloon bombs’ spark 19 fires in southern Israel: report | Fox News
“Balloon bombs” launched from the Gaza Strip reportedly started 19 fires in southern Israel on Wednesday, the day after Israel announced it would halt fuel shipments to Gaza.

DPRK / PRC / WESTPAC Reports

 


 

Third Trump-Kim summit hopes revived despite Pyongyang criticism – CNN
Hopes for a third summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and US President Donald Trump appeared to be revived Wednesday even after Pyongyang rebuked Washington over “hostility” that “viciously slandered” the country.
Kim Jong Un received ‘personal letter’ from Trump: North Korea state media – CNNPolitics
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un received a “personal letter” from US President Donald Trump, according to North Korean state news agency KCNA.
North Korea leader receives ‘excellent’ letter from Trump | Fox News
President Donald Trump sent North Korean leader Kim Jong Un an “excellent” letter, the North’s state-run news agency reported Sunday, quoting Kim as saying he would “seriously contemplate it.”
Trump considering a visit to Korean DMZ – CNNPolitics
President Donald Trump is considering a visit to the demilitarized zone between North and South Korea during his scheduled trip to Seoul, South Korea, after the G-20 summit, according to a South Korean government official.
Pompeo confirms Trump sent Kim Jong Un letter | Fox News
Mike Pompeo, the U.S. secretary of state, on Sunday confirmed reports that President Trump sent North Korea’s Kim Jong Un a letter that was described by Kim in foreign reports as “excellent.”
Trump to visit South Korea as Pompeo raises hope for new North Korea talks after letter – Reuters
U.S. President Donald Trump will visit South Korea this weekend after an exchange of letters with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un boosted hopes for talks aimed at ending North Korea’s nuclear program.
North Korea latest World War 3 news: Donald Trump and Mike Pompeo warned over comments | World | News | Express.co.uk
NORTH KOREA has launched a stunning attack on the US, claiming it “will not hesitate to pull a muscle-flexing trigger” if required to defend itself.
North Korea says U.S. extension of sanctions ‘a hostile act’: KCNA – Reuters
The recent U.S. extension of sanctions against North Korea was an act of hostility and an outright challenge to an historic summit between the two countries in Singapore last year, a spokesman for Pyongyang’s foreign ministry said on Wednesday.
Kim, Xi agree to grow ties whatever the external situation: North Korean media – Reuters
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and China’s President Xi Jinping reached a consensus on “important issues,” and agreed to build on their countries’ friendly relations “whatever the international situation,” North Korean state media reported.
Opinion | Why Xi Jinping Is Courting Kim Jong-un – The New York Times
It’s not about nuclear weapons, leverage with President Trump or the trade war.
North Korea’s Kim not ready to denuclearize: U.S. intelligence agency chief – Reuters
The U.S. intelligence community does not believe North Korean leader Kim Jong Un is ready to denuclearize, U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency Director Lieutenant General Robert Ashley told Fox News in an interview on Monday.
Australian student Alek Sigley feared detained in North Korea – BBC News
Pyongyang resident Alek Sigley has not been heard from and there are fears he may have been detained.


China’s Military Warns U.S. Must Get With the Times: ‘Those Who Resist Will Perish’
A Chinese Defense Ministry spokesperson warned the U.S. that “no strategy should harm the well-being of people all over the world” or “underscore the confrontation side of relations.”
China World War 3 news: Beijing says warns US must modernise approach ahead of G20 summit | World | News | Express.co.uk
CHINA’s military said the US ought to get with times and adopt a modernised approach or it risked falling behind in a scathing attack amidst increasing tensions ahead of a showdown at the G20 summit this weekend.
China’s Rogue Regime
China ramps up tensions with Ottawa as two Canadian Navy ships enters Strait of Taiwan | World | News | Express.co.uk
TENSIONS between China and Canada are ramping up after two Canadian Navy ships sailed through the Strait of Taiwan, an act seen as a politically charged provocation by Beijing.
Chinese fighters buzz Canadian warship, researcher says – CNN
Two Chinese fighter jets buzzed a Canadian warship in the East China Sea earlier this week in what Chinese media called a “warm welcome.”
Huawei Personnel Worked With China Military on Research Projects – Bloomberg
Several Huawei Technologies Co. employees have collaborated on research projects with Chinese armed forces personnel, indicating closer ties to the country’s military than previously acknowledged by the smartphone and networking powerhouse.


Xi’s G-20 Dilemma: How to Win Over Trump Without Changing China – Bloomberg
China’s most powerful leader in decades is facing what may be his greatest challenge yet.
Opinion | Xi and Trump and the Art of the Game – The New York Times
The president of China may have the upper hand after a visit to Pyongyang.
Hopes for Resolving U.S.-China Trade Fight Hinge on Trump and Xi – WSJ
President Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping will seek to revive trade talks this week, in a test of whether their professed personal chemistry can surmount seemingly intractable differences at the bargaining table.
President Trump fighting to fix a broken trade system at the G-20 | TheHill
The president will take every action to ensure America keeps its upper hand.
China’s Xi to present Trump with terms for settling trade deal: WSJ
China will demand that the U.S. remove its ban on the sale of U.S. technology to Huawei Technologies, Chinese officials tell the Journal.
Trump might not need to hear much to strike a truce with China: senior official
Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping are set to meet Saturday at the G-20 meeting in Osaka, Japan, with expectations running high that the two leaders can strike some bargain that at least puts the tit-for-tat tariff exchange on hold.
Beijing wants US to cancel inappropriate actions against Chinese firms
Chinese vice commerce minister said Monday that Beijing would like the U.S. to cancel “inappropriate” actions against Chinese companies.
China to Insist U.S. Lifts Huawei Ban as Part of Trade Truce – WSJ
Chinese President Xi Jinping plans to present President Trump with a set of terms the U.S. should meet before Beijing is ready to settle a market-rattling trade confrontation, raising questions of whether the two leaders will agree to relaunch talks.
American Tariffs on China Are Being Blunted by Trade Cheats – WSJ
Billions of dollars worth of China-made goods subject to the Trump administration’s tariffs in its trade fight with Beijing are dodging the levies by entering the U.S. via other countries, especially Vietnam.
Taiwan’s iPhone Tycoon Walks a Fraught U.S.-China Line in His Presidential Run – The New York Times
Terry Gou, who stepped back from his electronics empire on Friday, must strike a balance between the Washington and Beijing as the trade war simmers.
Foxconn’s Terry Gou Urges Apple to Invest in Taiwan – Bloomberg
The billionaire founder of Apple Inc.’s largest supplier asked the U.S. company to move from China to neighboring Taiwan.
U.S. Blacklists More Chinese Tech Companies Over National Security Concerns – The New York Times
The addition of five to the “entity list” heightens tensions just as American and Chinese officials try to get trade talks back on track.
U.S. Targets China’s Supercomputing Push With New Export Restrictions – WSJ
The Commerce Department is taking aim at China’s supercomputing push with new export restrictions that effectively cut five major Chinese developers of next-generation, high-performance computing off from U.S. technology.
U.S. blacklists 5 Chinese supercomputing groups ahead of trade talks – CBS News
Commerce Department cuts the companies off from American tech, saying they pose a threat to national security


China will not allow Hong Kong to be brought up at G20, Beijing says – CNN
A top Chinese Foreign Ministry official said Beijing would “not allow” the Hong Kong protests to be brought up at the G20 meeting in Osaka beginning on Thursday.
China says will not allow Hong Kong issue to be discussed at G20 summit – Reuters
China’s Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs Zhang Jun said on Monday that China will not allow the Group of 20 nations to discuss the Hong Kong issue at its summit this week.
Hong Kong protesters gearing up for G20 demonstrations amid fears of dwindling freedoms | Fox News
Hong Kong activists are preparing for more protests this weekend in the hope of sending a message to world leaders gathering for the G20 summit in nearby Osaka, Japan.
Hong Kong activists crowdfund for anti-extradition bill voice at G20 – Reuters
Hong Kong activists have raised more than HK$5 million ($640,606) in a crowdfunding campaign to take out newspaper ads in a bid to get a controversial extradition bill on the agenda at the G20 summit.
Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam is facing the wrath of her people. Beijing may be even angrier.  – The Washington Post
The pro-autonomy protests in Hong Kong highlight the squeeze between its “two masters.”
Hong Kong Protesters Keep Up the Pressure – WSJ
Thousands of protesters besieged the city’s police headquarters, extending a political crisis in the city sparked by a proposed extradition law that the government has since put a stop to in an effort to ease unrest.
Hong Kong protests: Thousands surround police headquarters – BBC News
Protesters are calling for the extradition bill, which has been suspended, to be completely shelved.
Hong Kong protests: How tensions have spread to US – BBC News
The conflict between mainland China and Hong Kong is playing out at college campuses across the US.
Hong Kong Police, Once Called ‘Asia’s Finest,’ Are Now a Focus of Anger – The New York Times
The police have struggled to manage some of the largest protests in the city’s history, as they defend a government that much of the public has turned against.
In Hong Kong, the Freedom to Publish Is Under Attack – Foreign Policy
If the extradition law is eventually forced through the Hong Kong legislature, censorship of books will become commonplace in what has long been a bastion of publishing freedom.The new mayor will preside over a city that people are fleeing in droves.
How To Start A Revolution : Planet Money : NPR
Revolutions don’t just happen. A data-driven approach to studying activism suggests two characteristics can vastly increase chances of success. Nonviolence is twice as effective So Chenoweth trawled through 323 campaigns for regime change or self-determination worldwide from 1900 to 2006. Then Stephan and Chenoweth teamed up to write a paper and a book based on the data. They found that major nonviolent campaigns are successful 53% of the time, while violent campaigns are successful only 26% of the time. But does nonviolence cause the higher success rate? Or are you more likely to choose sit-ins over shootouts when you know you’re already likely to succeed? When Stephan and Chenoweth factored in additional data on why the campaigns turned violent, peaceful resistance still prevailed. The likelihood of success was not a factor in whether a campaign became violent. “I was surprised,” Chenoweth says. “I expected for there to be, basically, at best no significant difference between armed and unarmed action.”


China’s vanishing beards and mosques – BBC News
The BBC has found new evidence of the increasing control and suppression of Islam in China
State Department condemns Iran, China for persecuting religious minorities – The Washington Post
North Korea was also listed in annual report as among the worst abusers of the rights of people of faith.
Ethnic Russian ‘Uncle Petrov’ sparks debate over what it means to be Chinese – CNN
With bright blue eyes, fair skin and bushy brown hair, Peter Petrov doesn’t look like a typical Chinese man.
China needs nearly $440 billion to clean up rural environment: report – Reuters
China will need to spend 3 trillion yuan ($440 billion) over three years to improve village sanitation and clean up its heavily polluted rural environment, the official People’s Daily reported on Saturday, citing government officials.


Chinese Cyber-Operatives Boosted Taiwan’s Insurgent Candidate – Foreign Policy
Han Kuo-yu came out of nowhere to win a critical election. But he had a little help from the mainland.
What to Know About the U.S.-Japan Defense Treaty Irking Trump – Bloomberg
A longstanding defense treaty between the U.S. and Japan is the latest international agreement to attract the ire of President Donald Trump. He is said to have mused about withdrawing from the treaty because he sees it as one-sided, since it promises U.S aid if Japan is ever attacked but doesn’t oblige Japan’s military to come to America’s defense. A U.S. withdrawal would represent a fundamental shift in an alliance that has helped guarantee security in Asia, laying the foundation for the region
Japan Abe and China Xi look to strengthen ties at G-20 as Trump looms
The leaders of Japan and China got off to a tense start but have made significant progress in turning around their relations in recent years.
Trump Muses Privately About Ending Postwar Japan Defense Pact – Bloomberg
President Donald Trump has recently mused to confidants about withdrawing from a longstanding defense treaty with Japan, according to three people familiar with the matter, in his latest complaint about what he sees as unfair U.S. security pacts.
Trump says he wants to end postwar Japan defense treaty: Report
U.S. President Donald Trump has not taken any steps to withdraw from the postwar treaty, Bloomberg reported, citing people familiar with the matter.
American in Vietnam sentenced to 12 years in prison for ‘attempting to overthrow the state’ | Fox News
An American in Vietnam was sentenced over a decade prison on Monday after he was found guilty of “attempting to overthrow the state” in a trial that lasted just half a day which produced a verdict his lawyer described as “too heavy.”
American Michael Nguyen sentenced in Vietnam for “attempt to overthrow” Communist regime with protest today – CBS News
Calif. resident Michael Nguyen entered guilty plea, but Communist regime doesn’t tolerate dissent; wife calls sentence a &quot;slap to the United States&quot;
Duterte Plays Down Chinese Ramming of Philippine Fishing Boat – The New York Times
The Philippine president warned against escalating tensions with China over the incident, declaring that “there was no confrontation” and adding, “Well, I’m sorry, but that’s how it is.”
A 747 Carried 2 Beluga Whales From China To Iceland : NPR
Naturally, transporting the whales — each about 13 feet long — was a huge logistical headache. Trainers have been preparing the belugas for the journey and for their new life in open water.

 


 

Foreign Policy Reports

 


 

Opinion: Istanbul and Hong Kong – a double victory for democracy | Opinion | DW | 25.06.2019
You could describe what has happened in Hong Kong and Istanbul as classic cases of authoritarian rulers scoring own goals. Who knows how they will deal with this in the medium term, writes Alexander Görlach.


Race to become UK PM: Boris Johnson exclusive interview – BBC News – YouTube
BBC News Published on Jun 24, 2019 After facing days of criticism for avoiding media scrutiny – Boris Johnson, who’s running against Jeremy Hunt to be the next Prime Minister and Tory leader – has spoken exclusively to the BBC.
Carrie Symonds is ‘too scared to go home’ after being recorded in ‘political stich-up’ by neighbours | Daily Mail Online
Tom Penn and wife Eve Leigh called the police on Boris Johnson and Carrie Symonds after they were ‘frightened and concerned’ by noises. Ms Leigh has written anti-Conservative posts on social media.
Woman arrested after RAF jets escort passenger plane back to London – CNN
A woman has been arrested after two Royal Air Force (RAF) jets were forced to escort a passenger plane back to London following severe disruption on board shortly after take-off.
‘Extremely disruptive’ passenger forces two jet fighters to escort commercial flight in for a landing – New York Daily News
Two Royal Air Force jets were dispatched to bring a commercial flight in for a landing after an “extremely disruptive” passenger went ballistic early Saturday evening.


Fears for Angela Merkel’s health after second bout of tremors | World | The Times
Angela Merkel was overcome with a bout of shaking this morning, her second public trembling episode in nine days, fuelling speculation about her health.The German chancellor, 64, appeared unsteady as she stood next to President Steinmeier during an appointment ceremony in Berlin for the new justic
Avowed Neo-Nazi Admits to Murder of German Politician – The New York Times
The 45-year-old suspect said he alone had planned and carried out the murder of Walter Lübcke, who had expressed support for refugees.
Germany sees big increase in anti-Semitic acts of violence
Germany’s domestic intelligence agency says the number of anti-Semitic acts of violence rose sharply last year alongside a further increase in those identified as far-right extremists.
Germany must combat right-wing extremism, Merkel says after politician’s murder – Reuters
Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel on Saturday said the state must rigorously fight right-wing extremism following the murder of a prominent politician.
‘We wanted to dry the Nazis out’: Police and locals spoil German neo-Nazi festival by taking away their beer – CNN
It was a dry, sober weekend for a group of neo-Nazis in Germany after police and locals teamed up to strip them of their beer.
Kaiser’s descendant loses court battle to regain 13th-century castle | World news | The Guardian
Court rules against claim on Rheinfels Castle by great-great-grandson of Wilhelm II


Trump: ‘We’ve been very good to our allies’ | TheHill
President Trump on Thursday asserted that the United States has been “very good” to its allies during his presidency as he arrived in Japan for his first meeting of the Group of 20 (G-20) summit.
Trump Plans to Meet With Xi, Putin and Erdogan This Week at G-20
(Bloomberg) — President Donald Trump will meet with China’s Xi Jinping, Russia’s Vladimir Putin and Turkey’s Recep Tayyip Erdogan while attending the Group of 20 summit later this week in Japan, White House officials confirmed on Monday.Trump also plans to meet with Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed
G-20 leaders face poltical instability, trade tensions and slowing growth
What makes this moment even more perilous is that world leaders come to the table with far less cohesiveness, nursing wounds from a series of trade skirmishes.
Donald Trump World War 3 latest news: US President issues warning to enemies ahead of G20 | World | News | Express.co.uk
DONALD TRUMP has issued a stark warning to the world ahead of this weekend’s G20 summit in Japan.
G20: What Trump can’t get wrong when he goes to Japan (Opinion) – CNN
Samantha Vinograd writes that President Donald Trump’s trips have become a national security liability, and if he stays true to form while at the G20 summit, he’ll be missing key opportunities to advance our national agenda at a time when the stakes could not be higher.
Trump and Xi to discuss US-China trade war at G-20 summit in Osaka
Trump and Xi are set to discuss trade at the G-20 summit in Japan. The highly anticipated meeting will likely impact the bilateral relationship and the broader global economy.
Before Talks With Trump, Xi Promotes His Image as a Leader With Friends – The New York Times
At the G20 summit, Mr. Xi needs to be shown as pursuing a bigger agenda who can offset animosities with the United States.
Trump, Putin, Agree To Work On Improved Relations Amid Fractious Issues
U.S. President Donald Trump and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin have agreed to work on improving relations between the two superpowers in their first meeting since a report detailed Moscow’s organized campaign to influence U.S. elections.
Trump, Putin meet at G-20 in Japan, discuss situation in Ukraine (Photo) – news politics | UNIAN
U.S. President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin discussed the situation in Ukraine at a meeting on the sidelines of a G20 summit in Osaka (Japan) on June 28. Both leaders agreed that improved relations between the United States and Russia was in each countries’ mutual interest and the interest of the world.
Putin and Trump talk for 80 minutes in Osaka – World – TASS
The two leaders discussed Syria, Iran, Ukraine and Venezuela
Trump tells Putin not to ‘meddle in the election,’ his tone was criticized | Fox News
President Trump met face-to-face with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the G-20 Summit in Japan and told his counterpart not to “meddle” in the 2020 elections when pressed by a reporter.
Don’t meddle in our election, jokes Trump | News | The Times
President Trump appeared to give President Putin a light-hearted warning over election meddling as the two leaders met on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Osaka. Asked by a reporter if he would tell Mr Putin not to interfere in the next election, the US president replied: “Yes, of course I will.”
Trump gives Putin light-hearted warning: ‘Don’t meddle in the election’ – CNNPolitics
President Donald Trump issued a breezy warning to his Russian counterpart Friday against meddling in US elections, laughing and smiling as he told his counterpart not to interfere.
Officer on trip with Brazil President Bolsonaro to G-20 summit caught with 86 pounds of cocaine | TheHill
An officer traveling with Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro to the Group of 20 summit in Japan was arrested after he was caught with more than 80 pounds of cocaine.
Brazilian airman on Bolsonaro’s trip to G20 summit caught with 86 pounds of cocaine aboard plane | Fox News
A member of Brazil’s Air Force who was set to join President Jair Bolsonaro on his trip to Japan for this week’s G20 summit was arrested Tuesday after Spanish police found 86 pounds of cocaine in his luggage, officials said.
G20: Brazilian officer caught with cocaine in Bolsonaro’s G20 contingent – CNN
A Brazilian Air Force officer traveling with President Jair Bolsonaro’s G20 contingent was arrested late Tuesday, after he was caught with 39 kilograms (roughly 86 lbs) of cocaine.


Maduro government claims plot to assassinate Venezuelan leader thwarted | Fox News
An assassination attempt against Venezuelan leader Nicolas Maduro, which Maduro claimed was a part of a “fascist” plot to overthrow the government, was thwarted, officials said.
Maduro says he will be ‘ruthless’ if opposition attempts coup | News | Al Jazeera
President’s warning comes after officials reportedly foiled a coup plot that included murdering the Venezuelan leader.
Venezuela’s Maduro says authorities foiled opposition coup plot
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro said security forces had foiled an opposition coup attempt that included plans to assassinate him and other top political figures.
Venezuela’s Ex-Spy Chief Took Part in Plot to Oust Maduro: ‘I’m Proud of What I Did’
“I thought I would be able to make Maduro see sense. I couldn’t,” Gen. Manuel Ricardo Cristopher Figuera said.
How Venezuela’s most famous SWAT cop escaped house arrest
Former public safety director Iván Simonovis, imprisoned in 2004 by the late Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez, escaped house arrest by rappelling down a 75-ft wall.
Russia Squeezing Embattled Venezuela for Tax-Free Gas Expansion – Bloomberg
Russia’s state-controlled oil giant, Rosneft PJSC, is extracting concessions from crisis-ridden Venezuela to enter the offshore natural gas market on the cheap, a potential headache for the U.S. and Europe.
Russia Says It’s Rotating Military Technicians From Venezuela
Russia said it was rotating military technicians out of Venezuela, as President Nicholas Maduro’s government declared that it thwarted an alleged coup plot. The Russian Embassy in Caracas made …
Russian air force plane lands in Venezuela: report | Russia News | Al Jazeera
A Ilyushin 62 jet reportedly arrived in Caracas months after similar visit prompted war of words between US and Russia.
UAWire – Kremlin: Russian military experts left Venezuela
Russian Il-62 aircraft, which arrived in Caracas on June 25, flew back a group of military-technical experts who worked in Venezuela under the …
Why Venezuela Needs Russia | The National Interest
Moscow hopes Caracas will pay off its debts and be an enduring geostrategic location for Russian influence.
Venezuela crisis: Guaido envoy urges international community to help
Some 4 million people have fled the South American country since 2015 amid an economic meltdown.
Venezuela detains six military, police officials: family members, activists – Reuters
Venezuelan authorities have arrested six members of the country’s military and police forces over the weekend, according to relatives of the detainees and human rights activists, as President Nicolas Maduro seeks to weed out dissent.
Venezuela crisis: Army and police officials detained, activists say – BBC News
Activists say six officials have been detained as President Maduro intensifies a crackdown on dissent.
U.N. rights chief Bachelet urges Venezuela to release prisoners – Reuters
U.N. human rights chief Michelle Bachelet on Friday urged Venezuela’s government to release prisoners who were arrested for peacefully protesting, and confirmed that a delegation would remain in the country to monitor the human rights situation.
Venezuelans Take Risky Voyage To Curaçao To Flee Crisis : NPR
Most Venezuelans looking to emigrate cross land borders into Colombia or Brazil. But for many, Caribbean islands like Curaçao are much closer escapes from their country’s turmoil.

 


IW/EW/IO/Cyber/Social Media Reports

 


 

ISW: CONFRONTING THE RUSSIAN CHALLENGE – To Inform is to Influence
By Frederick W. Kagan, Nataliya Bugayova, and Jennifer Cafarella Institute for the Study of War (ISW) and Critical Threats Project (CTP) at the American Enterprise Institute EXECUTIVE SUMMARY Russia poses a significant threat to the United States and its allies for which the West is not ready.  The West must act urgently to meet this…
Dylan Voller Can Sue Media Companies Over Facebook Comments From Readers, Court Rules
Former youth detainee Dylan Voller is suing News Corp, Fairfax Media and Sky News.
Facebook Is Challenged To Ban Military Leader Accused Of Killings : NPR
Facebook banned far-right extremist Alex Jones. But it won’t remove from the platform the warlord Lt. Gen. Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, even though he oversaw the killing of more than 100 people in Sudan.
Researchers Show How to Send Fake Presidential Alerts To Your Phone – Defense One
Your phone’s thirst for a better signal leaves it open to bogus messages, new research shows.


Raspberry Pi used to steal data from Nasa lab – BBC News
Lax security at a Nasa lab let a hacker lurk on the agency’s network for almost a year, says report.
Hackers are repeatedly targeting Navy contractors
Huntington Ingalls, the Navy’s largest shipbuilder, was the subject of the latest sophisticated hacking spree by organs of the Chinese government, according to a report from Reuters.
Report: Hackers using telecoms like ‘global spy system’
Boston-based Cybereason explained how hackers gain sweeping access to VIPs’ call records, location data and device information — effectively turning the targets’ cellular providers against them.
Code that Allowed the Equifax Breach Was Downloaded 21M Times Last Year – Defense One
A report highlights the difficulties of securing the many government IT systems that rely on open-source software.

US Domestic Policy Reports

 


 

Acting Defense Secretary Mark Esper sends first memo to troops as Pentagon boss | Fox News
On his first day on the job as the new acting secretary of defense, Mark Esper on Monday sent a memorandum to all Pentagon employees, laying out the Defense Department’s “path forward.”
Trump taps Army Secretary Mark Esper to lead Pentagon – POLITICO
Esper is already set to become acting Defense secretary after current acting Defense Secretary Pat Shanahan resigns on Sunday.
Trump announces he intends to nominate Esper as secretary of defense – The Washington Post
The president decides to install the Army secretary, retired officer and former Raytheon lobbyist as tensions with Iran mount.
Top leadership vacancies plague Trump’s Pentagon – CNNPolitics
When the defense ministers of NATO countries meet in Brussels this week, there will be a notable absence: a Senate-confirmed, permanent United States Secretary of Defense.
Here are the biggest weaknesses in America’s defense sector
A new Pentagon report lays out some of the major issues the defense-industrial base poses for America’s weapons.
Deal to move defense bill lets 2020 candidates vote on Iran
The Senate found a novel way to advance the National Defense Authorization Act.
Amid budget talks, remember that America’s defense-industrial base is indispensable
As Congress takes up the annual defense budget, it is worth acknowledging the comfort and quality of life to which we are accustomed owes its legacy in no small part to the collaborative force of the greatest public-private partnership in American history.
We’re Not Playing Acquisition Pac-Man Anymore – Defense One
Today’s defense acquisition officials have freedom of movement akin to an open-world game. They need to use it.
Lawmaker: Human Problem at Pentagon Worse than Tech Problem – Defense One
Rep. Jim Cooper says Congress shouldn’t accept a government topped by acting political appointees.
A Closer Look at the Arguments against the Low-Yield SLBM – Defense One
Why should the U.S. forgo a modest technical adjustment that improves forces supporting its strategy for deterring limited nuclear war?
Democrats Couldn’t Agree on Top National-Security Threats – Defense One
The candidates’ different answers reflect the Democratic Party’s deeper divisions on foreign policy.
Women are Critical to Ending Wars—and the Trump Administration Agrees – Defense One
A new law should kickstart long-overdue efforts to include more women in peace and security leadership roles.


Trump’s Confused Russia Policy Is a Boon for Putin – POLITICO Magazine
And it isn’t helped by the imminent departure of several staff with expertise on the subject.
Trump-Putin Sit-Down Seen As Chance To Address, Not Fix, Big Issues
Donald Trump said he expected to have a “good conversation” with Vladimir Putin at the G20 in Osaka, but the two leaders are not expected to make progress on any key issues.
Kremlin Confirms Putin-Trump Meeting During G20 Summit In Japan
The Kremlin says Russian President Vladimir Putin and his U.S. counterpart, Donald Trump, will meet during the Group of 20 (G20) summit in Japan later this week to discuss arms control and the tens…
Alexei Bayer: Trump is squandering America’s earned capital | KyivPost – Ukraine’s Global Voice
After doing little but campaigning for re-election since entering the White House, Donald Trump has now announced his “official” entry into the presidential race. The good news was delivered in Orlando, Florida, from the stage of the 62nd rally he has held since January 2017. His popularity rating is remarkably stable. A broad range of people now recognize that he is a flawed individual, a pathological liar, a bigot, an ignoramus and a narcissist. Nevertheless, they intend to vote for him based on the success of his policies.
Will He Be Dragged For Treason? Obama Accepted Unsolicited Intelligence From A Foreign Source During 2016 Election
.06/22/2019 5:12:44AM EST.
Trump’s protocol chief suspended amid State Department investigation ahead of G-20 – CNNPolitics
President Donald Trump’s protocol chief, Sean Lawler, has been suspended indefinitely just ahead of the G-20 meeting in Japan pending the outcome of a State Department investigation into his conduct, according to multiple State Department officials with direct knowledge of the matter.
Trump’s Protocol Chief Is Quitting Just Before the G-20 Summit – Bloomberg
The Trump administration official in charge of diplomatic protocol plans to resign and isn’t going to Japan for this week’s Group of 20 meetings, where he would have played a sensitive behind-the-scenes role, according to people familiar with the matter.
‘Imam of Peace’: Antisemitism in the U.S. is a ‘threat to national securi – World News – Jerusalem Post
“Raise your voices against hatred,” Tawhidi said on a trip earlier this year to Auschwitz, the infamous Nazi death camp.
Manafort told Sean Hannity in texts he would never give up Trump or Kushner – CNNPolitics
Former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort told Fox News host Sean Hannity that he would never give up information on President Donald Trump or senior White House adviser Jared Kushner, Trump’s son-in-law, according to newly unsealed texts between the two men in 2017 and 2018.
Fox News Host Sean Hannity Defends Texts With Paul Manafort – Deadline
Fox News Host Sean Hannity Defends Texts To Ex-Trump Manager Paul Manafort