Don’t mess with nuclear Russia, Putin says

LAKE SELIGER Russia (Reuters) – President Vladimir Putin said on Friday Russia’s armed forces, backed by its nuclear arsenal, were ready to meet any aggression, declaring at a pro-Kremlin youth camp that foreign states should understand: “It’s best not to mess with us.”

Putin told the assembly, on the banks of a lake near Moscow, the Russian takeover of Crimea in March was essential to save a largely Russian-speaking population from Ukrainian government violence. He said continued fighting in eastern Ukraine, where pro-Russian separatists launched an uprising in April, was the result of a refusal by Kiev to negotiate. Continue reading

The Significance of Germany’s Break From America

US President Barack Obama meets with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, DC, Nov 3, 2009.(SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty)

 

A spying scandal has sparked a lot of hatred for America among the Germans. Bible prophecy states that this trend will intensify.

After World War II, Germany lay in ruins. The nation was wiped out economically and couldn’t afford to rebuild. The United States came to Germany’s aid with the Marshall Plan, giving billions of dollars to Germany and other European states to help them recover. This prevented Soviet communism from spreading into Western Europe, and it bound West Germany, and the future united German state, to the rest of Europe and the Western world. It also ensured a strong post-war alliance between America and West Germany. This alliance continued when Germany reunified in 1990.

Recent events, however, are destroying this alliance.

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The Hegemony over Southeast Europe

BERLIN/BELGRADE (Own report) -The “Western Balkans Conference”, opening in Berlin today, is overshadow [sic] by the dispute over sanctions against Russia and criticism of the Federal Intelligence Service (BND). Serbia, a participant in the conference, has declared, it will not join the EU’s sanctions. Serbian enterprises are therefore not affected by Russian countermeasures and are even replacing agricultural products, whose importation from the EU has been banned by Moscow. The German government is attempting to prevent this. Berlin, in turn, has been forced to admit that, for years, the BND had systematically spied on Albania. Albania, Germany’s NATO ally, will also attend the conference. Berlin has initiated the “Western Balkans Conference” to shore up the hegemony over Southeast Europe, which it had acquired in the 1990s against the growing influence of China, Turkey and, particularly, Russia.

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Third Russian airspace violation in a week; Finland steps up air surveillance

Yet another Russian aircraft has strayed into Finnish airspace. In the latest incident, a Russian transport plane is suspected of flying over Finland around mid-day Thursday. Defence Minister Carl Haglund said Thursday Finland will heighten its air surveillance activities as a result of the incursions.

A Russian Border Guard airplane ventured into Finnish territory near Porvoo on Thursday. This time around, the suspected offender was a Russian An-72 transport aircraft was suspected of crossing into Finnish airspace over the Gulf of Finland around mid-day. Continue reading

Disarming the U.S. on the “Information Battlefield”

Paul Goble, a specialist on international broadcasting and the propaganda war being waged over Ukraine, writes that “…as effective as [Vladimir] Putin’s disinformation campaign has been inside Russia, it has been even more successful beyond that country’s borders.” One problem, he says, is that the Western media treat Putin’s lies as just another point of view.

Another problem is that the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG), the federal agency that oversees all U.S. civilian international media, seems to be completely clueless as to how to win the information war and make sure truth triumphs over lies.

Concerning the role played by the Western media, Goble contends that “…many Western outlets report what Moscow ‘says,’ while describing any Ukrainian government statement as ‘claims.’ Invariably, doing so is called objectivity but in fact it is anything but. Instead, it gives an opening to governments like Putin’s, which are prepared to lie and to spread their lies widely, confident that what they say, however untrue or outrageous, will be reported.”

This is one reason why the idea that Ukraine shot down the Malaysian plane, thinking it was Putin’s jet, has gotten so much attention in the West. It gets picked up as just another point of view, even though it is a blatant lie and was designed as such. Russia has a propaganda channel, Russia Today (RT), which broadcasts this disinformation inside the U.S. on a regular basis.

Showing his own receptivity to Russian propaganda, former Texas Rep. Ron Paul went on a new conservative news channel, Newsmax TV, to suggest that the government of Ukraine had shot the plane down. The former Republican congressman has been a regular guest on RT, and has wandered far from the days when he claimed to be an anti-communist.

Goble says many in the West fall victim to Moscow’s lies, “either out of a confusion between balance and objectivity, a conviction that all governments lie and that no one should be surprised, or a commitment to maintaining good relations with the Russian government no matter what it does.” It is not clear what motivates Ron Paul, but his acceptance of the Kremlin point of view makes a mockery out of his proclaimed devotion to liberty around the world. Continue reading

Pentagon confirms ISIL captured tanks, building ‘faster’ military force

WASHINGTON — The United States has determined that Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant was building an armored force.

Officials said the U.S. intelligence community detected a presence of U.S. and Russian-origin armored vehicle platforms at ISIL facilities in northern Iraq.

The officials said the platforms included armored personnel carriers, main battle tanks and armored combat vehicles. Continue reading

Russia and China vow to enhance military ties

Top Chinese and Russian military officers pledged to further enhance military ties on Wednesday.

Fan Changlong, vice chairman of China’s Central Military Commission, told Valery Gerasimov, Chief of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Russia, the development of relations between the two countries and the two armed forces have maintained good momentum in recent years.

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FBI Examining Whether Russia Is Tied to JPMorgan Hacking

Russian hackers attacked the U.S. financial system in mid-August, infiltrating and stealing data from JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM) and at least one other bank, an incident the FBI is investigating as a possible retaliation for government-sponsored sanctions, according to two people familiar with the probe.

The attack resulted in the loss of gigabytes of sensitive data, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the probe is still preliminary. Authorities are investigating whether recent infiltrations of major European banks using a similar vulnerability are also linked to the attack, one of the people said.

In one case, the hackers used a software flaw known as a zero-day vulnerability in one of the banks’ websites. They then plowed through layers of elaborate security to steal the data, a feat security experts said appeared far beyond the capability of ordinary criminal hackers. The incidents occurred at a low point in relations between Russia and the West. Russian troops continue to mass on the Ukrainian border and the West tightens sanctions aimed at crippling Russian companies, including some of the country’s most important banks. Continue reading

JPMorgan, Four Other Banks Hit by Hackers: U.S. Official

Computer hackers targeted JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM) and at least four other banks in a coordinated attack on major financial institutions this month, according to a U.S. official.

The attack led to the theft of customer data that could be used to drain accounts, according to another person briefed by U.S. law enforcement. The two people, who asked not to be identified because the investigation is continuing, discussed the incident after Bloomberg News reported a breach on banks earlier today.

Hackers targeted customer and employee information, said a third person involved in the investigation, who was also briefed by the government. The theft involved gigabytes of data, said several people familiar with the attacks. The scale indicates a potential for significant financial fraud.

Most thefts of financial information involve retailers or personal computers of consumers. Stealing data from big banks is rare, because they have elaborate firewalls and security systems.

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Inside the Ring: B-2 bombers’ ‘messages’

Three B-2 strategic nuclear bombers completed a tour of duty in Guam this week, as tensions remained high between the United States and China over what the Pentagon called a “dangerous” Chinese fighter-jet intercept of a U.S. surveillance plane last week.

Adm. Haney said in a statement that the bombers are intended to send a message to allies and adversaries.

“It is important for U.S. Strategic Command to continue to project global strike capabilities and extended deterrence against potential adversaries while providing assurance to our allies through deployments such as this,” he said. Continue reading

Russia NATO Not Looking for War With Russia – CSIS

WASHINGTON, August 28 (RIA Novosti) – NATO is not looking for ways to set off a war with Russia, despite the alliance’s commitment to build up rapid response forces close to Russia’s border, a representative of the Center for Strategic and International Studies told RIA Novosti.

“We are not looking for war with Russia. We aim to prevent any kind of unusual, unconventional approaches that might come after NATO territory or NATO stability,” International Security Director at CSIS Katherine Hicks said during a Wednesday press briefing on the upcoming NATO summit. Continue reading

Ukraine conflict: Russian soldiers seen with ‘up to 100′ military vehicles in Ukrainian villages

A convoy of “up to 100″ tanks, armoured vehicles and rocket launchers was seen travelling on a road toward Telmanove, a town about 80 kilometres south of rebel stronghold Donetsk and 20 kilometres from the Russian border, Ukraine’s army said in a statement.

The army did not give details about the personnel on board the vehicles or when the column was thought to have entered Ukraine.

A military source said the convoy had come from Russia. Continue reading

Ukraine crisis: Nato plans east European bases to counter Russia

Nato is to deploy its forces at new bases in eastern Europe for the first time, in response to the Ukraine crisis and in an attempt to deter Vladimir Putin from causing trouble in the former Soviet Baltic republics, according to its secretary general.

Anders Fogh Rasmussen said the organisations’s summit in Cardiff next week would overcome divisions within the alliance and agree to new deployments on Russia’s borders – a move certain to trigger a strong reaction from Moscow.

He also outlined moves to boost Ukraine’s security, “modernise” its armed forces and help the country counter the threat from Russia. Continue reading

China-Russia team challenges US-Japan militarization of space

President Xi Jinping of China said in April that China is capable of responding to the militarization of space by the United States and other countries. In the meantime, Xi is committed to allocating more budget so that the military has the power to counter threats posed by various space deployments.

Russia and China have signed a memorandum of understanding to work together in the area of satellite navigation. The countries plan to build the GLONASS (Global Navigation Satellite System) and Beidou Navigation Satellite System in each other’s territory. Continue reading

Hungary seeks EU alliance to push closer ties with Russia

BUDAPEST: Hungary Prime Minister Viktor Orban on Monday said he would seek to form a political alliance to stop the European Union pulling away from Russia over the crisis in Ukraine.

“The EU gets further away from Russia every day. That’s not only bad for Hungary, but for the entire EU,” Orban told Hungarian ambassadors in Budapest. Continue reading