The Navy Is Tracking Some Strange Sounds Coming from the Ocean

In a retired shore station for transpacific communications cables on the western coast of Vancouver Island sits a military computer in a padlocked cage.

It’s the sort of cage you might otherwise use to lock up automatic rifles or expensive electronics at a big box store, but this cage is protecting data—classified signals intelligence gathered from underwater microphones called hydrophones that sit on the ocean floor. These hydrophones are part of an undersea Internet-connected scientific research network of sensors and video cameras called NEPTUNE, operated by the nonprofit group Ocean Networks Canada. Much to the delight of researchers world-round, the hydrophones record the distinct sounds of whale songs, earthquakes, and volcanic activity. But to the chagrin of the United States and Canadian militaries, they detect the passing movements of military submarines through the Juan de Fuca Strait, too.

And so, on occasion, someone in a nearby Canadian military base, sometimes by U.S. request, will push what I like to imagine is a big red button, and the hydrophones deep off the coast of Vancouver Island effectively go dark—hydrophone data is re-routed from NEPTUNE’s scientists and researchers to the computer in the locked cage. Continue reading

Germany wants foreign embassies to declare their spy employees

They want names to be able to either eliminate or minimize compromises to their own operations at home.

The Fourth Reich is regaining its grip not only on itself, but the entire European front. Soon enough, NATO will get the boot and you will see a European Army forming.

Sound laughable? Two years ago here it was mentioned Germany would rise again. Look where we are now: In the rise process. A few more people see it than the previous years while the majority are still blind to what’s directly under their noses.

Europe has been anchored to Germany once again, and not the other way around. If they will boldly fly military helicopters over US embassy consulates in Germany, they will indeed take whatever else they can. History does indeed repeat itself.

 

German authorities have asked that foreign embassies and consulates on German soil officially disclose the names of their personnel involved in intelligence work.

German newsmagazine Der Spiegel said that the German Foreign Office has been systematically contacting consular authorities from every foreign nation located in Germany. In each case, the foreign consular representatives have been issued formal requests to release “through official diplomatic channels” an exhaustive list of names of their intelligence operatives operating in Germany under diplomatic cover. Continue reading

What’s Behind Russia’s Revival of a Soviet-Era Song Contest?

Russia will revive the Cold War-era Intervision Song Contest this October, according to July 25 reports.

Intervision was first established back in 1977 as a direct rival to the Europe-oriented Eurovision Song Contest. Few people in the participating Soviet nations had private telephones, so Intervision’s television viewers would turn on their house lights if they liked a certain song, or off if they didn’t. The state energy company would then record the size of each power spike, and report the results to the television company to determine points for each contestant. As the Soviet Union began to weaken in the early 1980s, Intervision was discontinued.

Now, Putin is reviving this relic of the Soviet Union’s “glory days,” as he recently has with so many others including a military prep fitness program, the “Hero of Socialist Labor” award, and a grip on domestic media that would earn a hat tip from Comrade Stalin himself.

All these moves serve Putin’s general purpose of resuscitating the Soviet Empire. But this latest one—reviving the song contest—also serves another specific purpose. Continue reading

Russia ‘to reopen Cold War Cuban listening post used to spy on America’

Lest we also forget the quote in Pravda where Putin reportedly said Russian nuclear missiles were already reinstalled in Cuba.

  • Facility at Lourdes was the largest Russian listening post abroad
  • It was mothballed in 2001 after relations with the U.S. warmed
  • But relations with the West have deteriorated amid the Ukraine crisis
  • Moscow has also shown a new interest in Latin America and Cuba
  • Last week, Russia agreed to write off 90 per cent of Cuba’s debt

Russia has agreed to reopen a major Cold War listening post on Cuba that was used to spy on America, it was reported today.

Moscow-based daily Kommersant claimed Russia and Cuba have struck a deal ‘in principle’ after President Vladimir Putin visited the island last week.

Citing several sources within Russian authorities, the respected daily wrote: ‘The agreements were finalised while President Vladimir Putin visited Havana last Friday. Continue reading

‘Worst crisis in US-German relations since WW II’

Klaus Scharioth, Berlin’s former ambassador to the US, tells DW why Germany’s expulsion of the top CIA official was right and why the current crisis is the biggest challenge yet for transatlantic ties.

Klaus Scharioth served as Germany’s ambassador to Washington from 2006 to 2011. He is currently dean of the Mercator College for International Affairs in Germany and professor of practice at Tuft University’s Fletcher School in the US.

DW: Berlin’s decision to publicly ask the head of the CIA in Germany leave the country is unprecedented in German-American relations and has triggered a major debate. Was the move justified or overblown?

I think it was a measured response. I believe there had to be a response because what happened is really an espionage overreach which you don’t have among friends. And therefore I believe the response was measured. Continue reading

David Without a Sling — ‘Making David Into Goliath: How the World Turned Against Israel’

It may be hard for some to believe, given the endless attacks on the Jewish state today, that in the not-too-distant past, Israel was as beloved as it is now widely reviled. More remarkable, it was especially loved on the left, where now it is scorned. The process by which Israel turned from paragon into pariah is the subject of Joshua Muravchik’s well-argued new book Making David into Goliath.

All this changed in the aftermath of the Six Day War. Muravchik documents the wide sympathy in Europe as well as in the United States—including in the media—which Israel enjoyed immediately prior to the war. At that time, it looked as if Israel might be annihilated by its Arab neighbors, who made no secret of their intention to rid the world of the Jewish State.

But when, to general amazement, Israel defeated the Arab armies and captured lands previously held by Jordan, Syria, and Egypt, it overnight became the ruler of millions of Arabs. The Arabs would take advantage of this, setting in motion a redefinition of the conflict. No longer was it tiny Israel against a vast Arab world. “Now it was Israel versus the homeless Palestinians. David had become Goliath,” Muravchik states. Continue reading

German Spy Caper Will Shake World

Fresh revelations of ongoing United States’ spying on Germany’s leadership have left the German leaders and people furious. It is at the point of becoming a game-changing event in German-U.S. relations.

In an article titled “The German-American Breakup,” the Los Angeles Times wrote, “[W]ith the fresh revelation that the cia recruited an intelligence official as a spy, and the possibility of a second spy in the Defense Ministry, the fury is reaching a tipping point. U.S. Ambassador John B. Emerson was called on the carpet by the German Foreign Office on July 4 about the first incident. On Thursday, Germany ordered the cia station chief in Berlin to leave” (July 10; emphasis added throughout).

This is the type of embarrassing diplomatic reprisal reserved for rogue regimes like Iran and North Korea—not for the world’s supposed superpower. Continue reading

NATO’s Rasmussen: ‘Active Role’ for Germany ‘Decisive for Europe’s Future’

In an interview, outgoing NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen discusses Germany’s postwar tradition of pacificism and his belief the country is now ready, and indeed has the responsibility, to take on a greater role in global affairs.

SPIEGEL: Twenty-five years after reunification and almost seven decades after the end of World War II, has Germany become a country just like every other in terms of security policy?

Rasmussen: Germany is a normal country today, with the kinds of rights and duties other countries have. That’s why Germany should play an important role in foreign and security policy, be it in the EU, NATO or in international politics.

SPIEGEL: So he spoke directly to your heart when German President Joachim Gauck recently called for a more active German foreign policy, military means included?

Rasmussen: I don’t want to interfere with a domestic German debate. But I do very much agree with the position expressed by the German president. I welcome this debate. And not only as NATO secretary general, but also as the former prime minister of Denmark, the small neighbor country once occupied by Germany. Germany needs this debate. I can understand Germany being very cautious when it comes to international military deployments because of its past. But the time has come in Germany for this debate. Europe is ready for it, too. The goal should be to develop a common understanding for how Germany’s new role might look. Continue reading

Japan upset as Chinese paper prints mushroom clouds on map

TOKYO/BEIJING (Reuters) – Japan on Tuesday vowed to make a stern protest to China after a regional Chinese newspaper printed a map of the country with mushroom clouds hovering over the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and accused the Japanese of wanting war again.

The neighbours have a long history of tense relations. Beijing bristles at Japan’s inability to properly atone for its invasion of China before and during World War Two, and its occupation of large parts of the country.

The newspaper, the weekly Chongqing Youth News from the southwestern city of Chongqing, printed the picture in its latest edition, Chinese media reported, though it appeared later to have been removed from the paper’s website version. Continue reading

Rome will be conquered next, says leader of Islamic State

With the United States committing national suicide, NATO on the brink of crumbling (one Ukraine-Russia war away where it purposely won’t get invovled, breaking its reliability) and a regional Islamic caliphiate taking over the Middle East with its eyes now set on Rome, we’re now looking at the staging ground for the Biblically prophecisied King of the North (Germany via a new United States of Europe) versus the King of the South (likely Iran) wars. It’s, like in WWII, where the Vatican worked hand-in-hand with European governments, Germany (King of the North) in this case, which will also resurrect the world’s last great empire — a new Holy Roman Empire. A few people might look at this and laugh, but today’s jokes are tomorrow’s reality. The buildup and developments are documented on this site which shows a clear trend an direction to come.

Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the self-proclaimed leader of the Islamic State stretching across Iraq and Syria, has vowed to lead the conquest of Rome as he called on Muslims to immigrate to his new land to fight under its banner around the globe.

Baghdadi, who holds a PhD in Islamic studies, said Muslims were being targetted and killed from China to Indonesia. Speaking as the first Caliph, or commander of the Islamic faithful since the dissolution of the Ottoman empire, he called on Muslims to rally to his pan-Islamic state.

“Those who can immigrate to the Islamic State should immigrate, as immigration to the house of Islam is a duty,” he said in an audio recording released on a website used by the group formerly known as the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham.

“Rush O Muslims to your state. It is your state. Syria is not for Syrians and Iraq is not for Iraqis. The land is for the Muslims, all Muslims.

This is my advice to you. If you hold to it you will conquer Rome and own the world, if Allah wills.Continue reading

Japan set for landmark easing of constitutional limits on military

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan is poised for a historic shift in its defense policy by ending a ban that has kept the military from fighting abroad since World War Two, a major step away from post-war pacifism and a big political victory for Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

The change will significantly widen Japan’s military options by ending the ban on exercising “collective self-defense”, or aiding a friendly country under attack. It will also relax limits on activities in U.N.-led peace-keeping operations and “grey zone” incidents short of full-scale war, according to a draft government proposal made available to reporters. Continue reading

The New Map of the Middle East

 

The map you see above, and also embedded below, was the main illustration for the piece, which appeared in the January/February 2008 issue. I introduced the conceit of the story this way:

As America approaches the fifth anniversary of the invasion of Iraq, the list of the war’s unintended consequences is without end (as opposed to the list of intended consequences, which is, so far, vanishingly brief). The list includes, notably, the likelihood that the Kurds will achieve their independence and that Iraq will go the way of Gaul and be divided into three parts—but it also includes much more than that. Across the Middle East, and into south-central Asia, the intrinsically artificial qualities of several states have been brought into focus by the omnivorous American response to the attacks of 9/11; it is not just Iraq and Afghanistan that appear to be incoherent amalgamations of disparate tribes and territories. The precariousness of such states as Lebanon and Pakistan, of course, predates the invasion of Iraq. But the wars against al-Qaeda, the Taliban, and especially Saddam Hussein have made the durability of the modern Middle East state system an open question in ways that it wasn’t a mere seven years ago. Continue reading

Isis storms Saddam-era chemical weapons complex in Iraq

Simply WMDs from Iraq that weren’t shipped by Russia to Syria.

See also the following previous posts for further information:

How Did Syria Acquire Massive Stockpiles of WMD?

FLASHBACK: UN inspectors: Saddam shipped out WMD to Syria before war and after

Facility containing disused stores of sarin and mustard gas overrun by jihadist group

The jihadist group bringing terror to Iraq overran a Saddam Hussein chemical weapons complex on Thursday, gaining access to disused stores of hundreds of tonnes of potentially deadly poisons including mustard gas and sarin. Continue reading

A New Grand Strategy

Berlin choosing Moscow over Washington emphasizes the fact that in the real world there is no such thing ‘allies’, but ‘interests’. This article precisely underscores this fact. Although its true regarding the persuit of ‘two global policies’, Germany has historically chosen Russia over America which has ironically lead to two of the bloodiest wars in world history as both have used economic/political/military cooperation to out-maneuver the other for strategic military advantage before an actual war is declared. History is repeating itself and the only difference this time around is the Fourth Reich (German-dominated EU) versus Putin’s neo-Soviet Union.

BERLIN (Own report) – An influential German weekly opened a debate on the call for redefining EU – US relations. The West’s current policy toward Ukraine is diametrically opposed to “European” interests, according to an article published in the online-edition of the German weekly “Die Zeit”. “Europe should not deprive itself of cooperation with Moscow; it should rather be enhanced. At the same time, the EU should intensify its relations with Washington, while pursuing “its own concepts” with more determination. The objective should be a “new and more promising transatlantic grand strategy.” The article was authored by an associate of the Global Policy Institute, a think tank in London, but his standpoint also reflects opinions being expressed within the German foreign policy establishment. Back-stage disputes over Germany’s policy toward Ukraine are slowly surfacing into public view. Continue reading

Russian Bombers Fly Within 50 Miles of California Coast

People will easily dismiss the danger in this. What they will typically say is that these bombers are old and outdated. However, what they’re missing is the fact that they’re within striking range. They don’t have to be over the continental United States or even 50 miles from it. The danger lies within the nuclear-armed missiles they carry that have the reach and speed to hit multiple targets within 2 – 5 minutes across the western part of the US in this case. Imagine 20 military bases being knocked out within 30 minutes time.

Add to the fact that there is no missile defense on the west coast and Alaska’s missile defense won’t help at all when the enemies are already past their enemy’s defensive lines. Russia is also using outdated bombers for dry runs. Who knows what they have behind closed doors in regards to modern strategic bombers that might be able to fly over any part of the entire American homeland and strike.

 

U.S. F-22, F-15 jets intercept four Bear H bombers near Alaska, Northern California

Four Russian strategic bombers triggered U.S. air defense systems while conducting practice bombing runs near Alaska this week, with two of the Tu-95 Bear H aircraft coming within 50 miles of the California coast, the North American Aerospace Defense Command (Norad) confirmed Wednesday.

“The last time we saw anything similar was two years ago on the Fourth of July,” Navy Capt. Jeff Davis, a Norad spokesman, told the Free Beacon.

Davis said the latest Bear H incursions began Monday around 4:30 p.m. Pacific time when radar detected the four turbo-prop powered bombers approaching the U.S. air defense zone near the far western Aleutian Islands. Continue reading