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US government officially accuses Russia of political hacks

RT | October 7, 2016

The US intelligence community is “confident” that Russia is behind the recent hacks of US officials’ and organizations’ emails, the Department of Homeland Security and the Office of National Intelligence said.

According to the joint statement issued Friday, “disclosures of alleged hacked e-mails on sites like DCLeaks.com and WikiLeaks and by the Guccifer 2.0 online persona are consistent with the methods and motivations of Russian-directed efforts.”

“We believe, based on the scope and sensitivity of these efforts, that only Russia’s senior-most officials could have authorized these activities,” says the statement, posted by the Director of National Intelligence James Clapper.

The thefts and disclosures are “intended to interfere with the US election process,” the statement said, adding that “the Russians have used similar tactics and techniques across Europe and Eurasia” to influence public opinion.

External attempts to access election systems in several states“in most cases originated from servers operated by a Russian company,” the US officials said. “However, we are not now in a position to attribute this activity to the Russian Government.”

It would be “extremely difficult” for anyone to alter ballot counts or election results through cyberattacks, DHS and DNI said.

DHS has established an Election Infrastructure Cybersecurity Working Group “with experts across all levels of government” to raise awareness of cybersecurity risks, and urges state and local election officials to seek cybersecurity assistance from the federal authorities.

This is the first time the US government has officially accused Russia of cyberattacks related to the US presidential campaign. The Democratic National Committee blamed Russia for the hack of their email servers in June, though a lone hacker going by the name ‘Guccifer 2.0’ claimed responsibility and denied any ties to Russia.

The statement from Homeland Security and DNI comes just hours after Secretary of State John Kerry said that Russian actions in Syria “beg for an appropriate investigation of war crimes.” Moscow has dismissed Kerry’s words as “propaganda” intended to distract from US failure to implement the Syrian ceasefire agreement.

US cybersecurity experts claim that six out of eight IP addresses used by the DNC hackers were hosted on King Servers, a Russian provider. Vladimir Fomenko, owner of the company, told RT that he was never contacted by US law enforcement, however.

“We are ready to assist in probing this crime and consulting the FBI or other services on such issues. Hackers are a common threat and we must fight it together,” Fomenko said.

“If the FBI asks, we are ready to supply the IP addresses, the logs,” he said. “Nobody is asking… It’s like nobody wants to sort this out.”

October 7, 2016 Posted by | Deception, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , , , | 3 Comments

Anti-Russia smear campaign also targets Trump

By Finian Cunningham | RT | June 18, 2016

Sensational reports of Russian government spies hacking into the Democrat party’s computers weren’t the usual anti-Moscow smear job. Republican presidential contender Donald Trump also took a hit in the double whammy.

The abrasive business tycoon may have a popular following among grass roots voters, but he has managed to garner powerful enemies within the American establishment. Not least large sections of the corporate news media, the military and foreign policy arms of US government.

Government-owned news outlet Voice of America reports this week that Republican leaders are “wringing their hands” over Trump and seeking to nix his presidential nomination. This impetus against the billionaire politician has grown in the wake of last week’s mass shooting in Orlando, Florida, when Trump “doubled down” on controversial anti-Muslim rhetoric, which is seen as divisive and alienating voters.

Trump’s enemies in the media are topped by the Washington Post after he banned the newspaper from covering his campaign. In an unprecedented move, he revoked official accreditation to the paper’s reporters after he slammed the Post for “phony and dishonest” coverage. The paper has prominently featured columns that purport to “debunk” many of Trump’s political claims and statements.

Trump made another powerful enemy when he scoffed at the US-led military umbrella NATO, deriding the 28-member military bloc as an “obsolete” organization. He also said he would slash US financial and military commitments if elected president. Trump stepped on serious toes there since NATO can be seen as a lynchpin of American imperial power projection and a crucial financial pump for the Pentagon and its military-industrial complex.

Earlier this month, CNN ran an “exclusive” op piece to NATO. Headlined “Inside NATO as it faces fire from Trump”, the organization was given ample space to justify its existence as “cutting edge” and “transforming” for its stated purpose of maintaining global security. Trump’s name wasn’t mentioned explicitly by NATO officials, but it was obvious that he had rankled the alliance, and it was out to burnish its image, which CNN generously indulged.

Now let’s deal with the smear job at issue. On Tuesday, the Washington Post splashed with this story: “Russian government hackers penetrated DNC, stole opposition research on Trump”.

The Post’s “national security” reporter Ellen Nakashima writes: “Russian government hackers penetrated the computer network of the Democratic National Committee and gained access to the entire database of opposition research on GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump, according to committee officials and security experts who responded to the breach.”

The first thing to note is the poor journalistic standard, whereby the headline of a news report is presented as a fact – “Russian government hackers penetrated DNC” – when the information is actually only a claim “according to committee officials and security experts”, as the first paragraph discloses.

And on reading the article it turns out that the claim made against the Russian government is underwhelming. The entire article is based on the hearsay of the private security firm employed by the Democrat party. There is no evidence presented to substantiate the assertion that the alleged hackers were linked to Russian military intelligence (GRU) or its state security service (FSB).

This is true to form for that Washington Post reporter. Last year, Nakashima published several articles in which she similarly claimed that Russia and Chinese government hackers had broken into the White House network and other federal databases. Again, those articles were based on unverified claims by anonymous officials and private security firms.

For the record, the Russian government flatly denied having anything to do with the latest computer hack at the DNC. “I completely rule out a possibility that the [Russian] government or the government bodies have been involved in this,” said Dmitry Peskov, the Kremlin’s spokesman.

A second telling aspect about the story was that on the same day that the Washington Post led on it, all the major US media, and some prominent British ones too, also ran with it. All with nearly the same wording of the factually sounding headline imputing the Russian government. That kind of wall-to-wall, uniform coverage is indicative that the story was primed by a governmental agency for media broadcast. In short, a disinformation campaign.

The obvious target here is Russia. Not for the first time has the Kremlin been accused with breaching US computer networks and generally being a sinister specter threatening national security – as if Washington is not also carrying out the same espionage and worse. The hacker story is but just one more twist in Washington’s overarching anti-Russia narrative, including accusations that it is destabilizing European states, annexed Crimea, is invading Ukraine, and bombing hospitals and civilians in Syria.

Russian spies allegedly interfering in American domestic politics and a presidential election by hacking into the Democrat National Committee is aimed at whipping up Cold War public resentment towards Moscow.

But perhaps the bigger target of the disinformation is Donald J Trump.

Notice how the alleged Russian hack was coupled prominently with “stealing opposition research on Trump”. And, pointedly, all the media headlines also featured this aspect. Patently, the Trump detail was intended as a “talking point”, as they say in state intelligence parlance.

The Trump campaign reportedly brushed off the “news” that personal information had been accessed by hackers. His campaign team breezily referred reporters to contact federal investigators.

However, here’s the thing. By making it appear that the Russians have the goods, or the dirt, on Trump the intended effect is that he would be viewed as “compromised” in the eyes of American voters. He would be, according to this logic, a national security risk if elected president, vulnerable to being manipulated, blackmailed or some other form of coercion – by America’s number one global enemy, Russia.

The Washington Post is not the only one with a confluence of interest in running the Russian hacker/Trump damaged story. The private security firm, CrowdStrike, that the DNC contracted to purportedly hunt for the Russian spyware is linked to NATO and the US foreign policy establishment. And it is CrowdStrike’s assessment upon which the entire story in the Washington Post and all the other media outlets is based.

Dmitri Alperovitz, CrowdStrike’s chief technology officer, is quoted frequently as the main source of the story, and as saying they have “high confidence” it was Russian hackers, “but we don’t have hard evidence”.

In what seems a clumsy disclosure, the Washington Post article makes a passing reference to Alperovitz being “a senior fellow at the Atlantic Council”.

The Atlantic Council, based in Washington DC, is a high-profile international think tank that publishes papers, holds seminars and hosts leading American and European public figures to present a solidly “Atlanticist” US foreign policy. The Atlantic Council is tightly aligned with the US-led NATO military alliance and is regularly briefed by NATO leaders, including former commander General Philip Breedlove and current secretary general Jens Stoltenberg. It is an avid cheer leader for the anti-Russian narrative that dominates US policy towards Moscow.

In sum, the latest media smear job on Russia was a double dirty trick. With Donald Trump also on the receiving end.

Read more:

Russian spies again? DNC says Russian hackers breached its files

June 18, 2016 Posted by | Deception | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

No Matter Who Becomes President Israel Wins

Saban and Adelson should register as foreign agents

By Philip Giraldi • Unz Review • December 22, 2015

The next American president will almost certainly be bought and paid for by the Israel Lobby. Hillary Clinton has already declared that that when she is elected president she intends to take relations with Israel “to the next level” and has also promised to invite Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to visit on her very first day in office. It is difficult to imagine what the next level might actually be in America’s already servile deference to Israeli interests so she should perhaps be careful regarding what she commits herself to do. Netanyahu just might feel empowered to remain in the Oval Office on his visit, possibly also moving the Knesset to Washington so it will be closer to the U.S. Treasury if Israel’s budget comes up a bit short as well as just across the river from the Pentagon and all those nifty weapons that can be used to kill Palestinian children.

Hillary’s pledge of fealty to Israel took place at a meeting of the Saban Forum, which is an annual dialogue between American and Israeli leaders from across the political and social spectrum, hosted by the Brookings Institute, which also has a Center for Middle East Policy, formerly also named after Saban. The eponymous Saban is Haim Saban an Israeli who has made his billions of dollars in the United States in the television and entertainment industry. His best known brand is the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. He is consistently one of the largest donors to the Democratic Party, contributing $10 million in 2001-2, whose stated formula for influencing American politics is to donate to politicians and parties, establish think tanks and control the media message. He has worked hard to do all three on behalf of Israel, to include paying for the Democratic National Committee headquarters in DC.

Saban’s dealings with the Democrats have apparently not inhibited his cooperation with Israel’s intelligence service Mossad. In 2009 Congressman Jane Harman was contacted by an Israeli intelligence “agent” and reportedly agreed to attempt to influence a reduction in the espionage charges in the then ongoing trial of accused American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) spies Steve Rosen and Keith Weissman. In return, Harman’s contact promised to support her bid to become chairman of the House Permanent Committee on Intelligence. The Israeli, who some suspect was Haim Saban himself, indicated that he would pressure House speaker Nancy Pelosi using threats to withhold political contributions from Saban if Harman were not given the position. Harman was later spoken of as a possible candidate to become Director of Central Intelligence and, without the FBI recordings of her phone conversations, which were made known to Pelosi, she might have obtained either position or possibly both in succession.

Saban has also long been associated with the Clintons and he and a tight group of like-minded donors may indeed constitute the most financially significant part of Hillary’s political base. When Bill was president Saban was a regular overnight visitor at the White House. He has pledged to spend “whatever it takes to elect Hillary in 2016 because “the relationship with the US and Israel will be significantly reinforced.” Saban has repeatedly claimed that “I’m a one-issue guy, and my issue is Israel.” Hillary and Bill appear to agree and one might even argue that Bill has a soft spot for money coming from Israeli spies, witness his pardoning of fugitive Marc Rich in 2001. So put it all together if you will and if you think that the wag the dog relationship between Washington and Tel Aviv is bad now, just wait because it will be moving “to the next level” if Hillary is elected.

So who is standing up for the interests of the American people? Nobody, apparently. Senator Ted Cruz has no less than 69 press releases on his web site pledging support for Israel. Jeb Bush has pledged to ban the pro-Palestinian Boycott Divest and Sanction (BDS) movement in the U.S. which most people would consider to be free speech. Every Republican candidate also continues to pander directly and personally to Benjamin Netanyahu, including Donald Trump who planned to drop in on Bibi but had to cancel the trip because of the reaction to his comments about Muslims. Trump had also caused somewhat of an uproar by telling a Jewish Republican audience in New York City that they wouldn’t support him because he didn’t need their money. Imagine the cheek of Trump to link Jews with money with buying influence! In any event, Jonathan Greenblatt, CEO of the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), determined that Trump’s comments were not anti-Semitism because they had been misinterpreted and I for one am relieved that we have a brave and enlightened organization like the ADL to keep us on our toes when it comes to potential hate speech.

George Washington could not have envisioned the manner in which money has corrupted American politics. Congressmen complain that much of their time is spent fundraising and, in such a system, it is inevitable that the most generous donors are able to position themselves for favors from the political class. Some become Ambassadors even though they are completely unqualified. Others choose to push certain legislative agendas, to include tax breaks and bailouts that enrich them personally.

But now we have something that goes way beyond that in the new breed of mega-rich, colossally wealthy multi-billionaires who are well positioned to use their resources to support a political candidate willing to accept the money and sell out his or her principles to someone advancing the interests of a foreign country. We are now on the verge of having a Manchurian Candidate president.

Last November an organization called the Israel-America Council (IAC), which ostensibly represents expatriate Israeli citizens residing in the United States, hosted an inaugural bash in Washington. Present were Saban and Sheldon Adelson sharing a stage. Adelson, the principal funder of IAC, was born in the United States and lives in Las Vegas but also has a home in Israel and presumably has Israeli citizenship. His wife is Israeli and he has said that he regrets serving in the US Army in World War Two while also expressing a fervent desire to have a son who would serve as an Israeli military sniper. Both Adelson and Saban are essentially Israelis who live in the United States for economic reasons. Scott McConnell has described them as having “maximal loyalties to Israel and minimal ones to the United States.”

Adelson is the Republican version of Saban. He believes that the United States should nuke Iran as a “negotiating tactic,” has an estimated $23.8 billion fortune derived mostly from casinos in Las Vegas and in Asia. He is a Republican funder for those prospective candidates who promote unlimited US support for Israel. He bankrolled Newt Gingrich’s bid for the GOP nomination in 2012 as well as Mitt Romney for a total of $150 million and also contributed $10 million to Republican candidates in the 2014 congressional campaign. Newt Gingrich in return repaid the favor by praising Israel in his foreign policy pronouncements, taking a hard line with Iran and describing the Palestinians as an “invented people.”

Adelson and Saban’s “spirited public discussion” at IAC included a number of zingers that have been widely reported in the alternative media. Saban commented that in the event of a “bad” deal between Washington and Tehran over the latter’s nuclear program (bad as being defined by Israel) Netanyahu “should bomb the living daylights out of the sons of bitches.” Adelson noted that “the purpose of the existence of Palestinians is to destroy Israel” before dismissing the possibility of a democratic state including both Arabs and Jews by responding “So Israel won’t be a democratic state, so what?” He added that democracy was not mentioned in the Torah. The two also joked about combing their resources to buy the New York Times by offering to pay “more than it’s worth” to make its coverage of Israel even more favorable than it already is. Saban added that he had even used “threats” to obtain favorable media reporting about Israel. The seven hundred “Israeli-Americans” in the audience reportedly responded to the conversation with “wild applause.”

Adelson and Saban concluded that “there’s no right or left when it comes to Israel” and the conference Chairman Shawn Evenhaim joked at its conclusion that “After the election in 2016 one of you will get me a private tour of the White House.” The jest was on target. At this point it is almost certain that both Saban and Adelson will become the largest single donors for whoever becomes the GOP and Democratic candidates. That will buy them enormous access, as Hillary Clinton has already demonstrated. Given that reality one has to accept the obvious conclusion that the two Israeli billionaires might well be able to substantially define the relationship between Washington and the Muslim world, to Israel’s benefit.

That Adelson and Saban might think privately that they have become political kingmakers is one thing, but stating as much in a public forum defies belief. They should be recognized for what they really are: agents of a foreign government and there is no reason why the Justice Department should not require them to register as such under the Foreign Agents Registration Act of 1938. Their close and continuing relationships with Israeli government can no doubt be demonstrated, validating the claim and registering as foreign agents would make illegal their funding of American politicians.

And once one starts recognizing foreign advocacy groups for what they are, other organizations like IAC, the Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP) and AIPAC should also be required to register as agents of the Israeli government. And there are many more such organizations, a virtual alphabet soup. Registration would mandate transparency in their funding and end their phony status as educational tax exempt organizations.

It does not require any particular genius to realize that someone living in one country while favoring the interests of another is not a desirable citizen but we retain at least some semblance of freedom of speech and anyone should be able to advocate anything. But it would be nice for a change if our two venerable national parties might for once seize the high ground and act respectably. I would suggest that the Democratic National Committee and the Republican National Committee might consider developing some backbone and combine in issuing a joint statement refusing to take any donations from either Adelson or Saban in the current election cycle. It could remove both considerable influence peddling and Israel itself from the electoral process, which would be a blessing all around. Might it actually happen? Almost certainly not.

December 22, 2015 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular, Wars for Israel | , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Hillary’s Friend McAuliffe Rolls Deep

By Kevin Ryan | Dig Within | October 20, 2013

Yesterday, Hillary Clinton offered a rousing endorsement of “longtime family friend” Terry McAuliffe in his second run for Governor of Virginia. McAuliffe certainly has been a good friend to the Clintons, having once made them a $1.35 million gift which, after becoming a scandal, turned into a loan. But the most interesting parts of McAuliffe’s history often go unnoticed, including his links to the security upgrades at the World Trade Center (WTC) in the late 1990s.

One of the primary companies involved in the security upgrades for the WTC was Ensec International, founded by Charles Finkel. Ensec’s Florida subsidiary had an office on the 33rd floor of the North Tower. At the same time, Finkel was an export sales executive for a company called Engesa, a manufacturer of tanks and other military vehicles for Operation Desert Storm. Engesa was a Saudi-approved supplier.

Ensec’s responsibility at the WTC involved setting up a new system for securing the basement levels, particularly in the parking garages. It was reported that the access control system used was manufactured and installed by Ensec. The system included proprietary software, proximity card readers and vehicle identification tags for all registered vehicles. The system also included cameras, located “in critical locations within the complex, such as machine rooms, computer areas, visitor areas and other sensitive locations.”

Lockheed Martin subcontracted the PANYNJ work to Ensec in November of 1996. This was the same time that Carlyle Group employee and Iran-Contra suspect Barry McDaniel was hired to run operations for the highly suspicious WTC security contractor Stratesec. And just as Ensec obtained the contract to work alongside McDaniel and Stratesec, it added Terry McAullife as a director.

Before joining Ensec, McAuliffe had been involved in a number of suspicious business dealings. For example, he was linked to Teamster related corruption. And he was also involved in a lawsuit regarding Loral Space, a company investigated for collaborating with and giving secrets to the Chinese for use in satellite and intercontinental ballistic missile programs.

The charges against McAuliffe in the Loral Space scandal were that he agreed “to participate in this scheme to sell seats on taxpayer-financed foreign trade missions and other government services in exchange for campaign contributions to the Democratic National Committee (DNC).” McAuliffe also “played a central role in selecting trade mission participants and, on information and belief, securing other favorable treatment from the Clinton Administration for Defendant Loral” It was also reported that McAuliffe “prominently figured among those selected for participating in the high-profile Commerce Department trade mission to China was Defendant Schwartz, who would go on to become the single largest contributor to the DNC.” Bernard Schwartz was the billionaire CEO of Loral.

The CEOs of Hughes Aircraft, Loral, and Lockheed co-wrote a letter to President Clinton, in October 1995, asking the president to “transfer all responsibility for commercial satellite export licensing to the Commerce Department.” Hughes was run by James Abrahamson at the time. Abrahamson would go on to be a director at Stratesec and later, with James Clapper, at satellite spy company GeoEye. Hughes, Loral, and Lockheed ended up paying enormous fines for illegal exports of advanced missile technology to China, and Hughes was charged with 123 counts of national security violations. But in 1996, Clinton did move oversight of the satellite exports to the Department of Commerce and the three CEOs thanked him publicly.

McAuliffe was linked to another company that was mired in scandal―Global Crossing. It was reported that McAuliffe purchased $100,000 in Global Crossing stock before the company went public and cashed out several years later for $18 million (some reports put it at a mere $8 million). Richard Perle was a lobbyist for Global Crossing, which was a partner in several deals with the Chinese company Hutchison Whampoa, called an “arm of the PLA [People’s Liberation Army].” Li Ka-Shing was the Chinese billionaire owner of Hutchison who invested in firms owned by Winston Partners and employed Winston cofounder Marvin Bush’s brother, Neil Bush, as a consultant.

In 2001, McAuliffe became Chairman of the DNC. Between that role and his later job as campaign chairman for Hillary Clinton’s Presidential run, McAuliffe worked as Vice-Chairman of Carret investments. McAuliffe was hired at Carret by Alan Quasha, who once “bailed out George W. Bush’s failing oil company in 1986, folding Bush into his company, Harken Energy, thus setting him on the path to a lucrative and high-profile position as an owner of the Texas Rangers baseball team, and the presidency.”

Alan Quasha had owned Carret since 2003. But he was previously known for his leadership of Harken Energy, and thereby, his connection to the many suspicious organizations related to Harken, including BCCI. At Carret and Harken, Quasha had a partner named Hassan Nemazee. An investor in Harken and the founder of the Iranian-American PAC, Nemazee was also associated with the RAND Corporation. Nemazee was later charged with running a $292 million ponzi scheme.

In any case, Ensec International and its leaders should have been investigated for possible security breaches at the WTC. The management structure at Ensec, including its arms dealer founder Charles Finkel and director Terry McAuliffe, should have led the 9/11 Commission and NIST to consider the problems that might have resulted from this company having rebuilt the access systems for the WTC basement levels. Additionally, the fact that Lockheed Martin had subcontracted the PANYNJ work to Ensec was one indicator that these companies might have benefited from the attacks.

The official U.S. investigations into 9/11 are over but people should keep in mind that certain political figures remain from the glory days of the Bush and Clinton administrations. McAuliffe is one of those political figures and he has a suspicious background that includes unbelievable strokes of financial fortune and work for some apparently very powerful, international operators. Virginia residents might wonder what favors he might do as Governor for those old friends in high places.

October 20, 2013 Posted by | Corruption, Deception, False Flag Terrorism | , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment