Amazon Web Services can Now Host the Defense Department’s Most Sensitive Data

Blackboard/Shutterstock.com

 

This week, the Defense Department granted the cloud computing giant a provisional authorization to host Impact Level 5 workloads, which are the military and Pentagon’s most sensitive, unclassified information.  Continue reading

U.S. Navy Investigating If Destroyer Crash Was Caused by Cyberattack

 

The military is examining whether compromised computer systems were responsible for one of two U.S. Navy destroyer collisions with merchant vessels that occurred in recent months, Vice Admiral Jan Tighe, the deputy chief of naval operations for information warfare, said on Thursday.

Naval investigators are scrambling to determine the causes of the mishaps, including whether hackers infiltrated the computer systems of the USS John S. McCain ahead of the collision on Aug. 21, Tighe said during an appearance at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington.   Continue reading

Homeland Security Dept bars Kapersky software; Russian intel intrusion feared

Amid concern that cybersecurity software made by Kapersky Lab is vulnerable to intrusion by Russian intelligence services, the US Department of Homeland Security on Wednesday barred American federal agencies from using the company’s products. It said in a statement that “the Russian government could capitalize on access provided by Kaspersky products to compromise federal information and information systems”, directly affecting US national security. It noted that Russian law permits the country’s intelligence agencies “to request or compel assistance from Kaspersky and to intercept communications transiting Russian networks”. The company is reported to have a close working relationship with Russia’s FSB intelligence agency. Continue reading

Russia, China Playing Major Role in Keeping Venezuela Afloat

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro / Getty Images

 

The countries ‘have provided capital, goods, services, and political backing’

Russia and China have played a major role in keeping the dictatorial Maduro regime in Venezuela afloat, according to expert testimony before the House Foreign Affairs Committee Wednesday.

Evan Ellis, a senior associate at the Center for Strategic and International Studies and a professor at the U.S. Army War College, appeared before the Western Hemisphere subcommittee of the Foreign Affairs Committee for a hearing on the malicious influence of state and criminal actors in the Latin American nation’s ongoing breakdown.

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Oil Rich Venezuela Stops Accepting Dollars

Source: The Burning Platform

 

  • President Maduro ‘ Venezuela will create a basket of currencies to free us from the dollar,”
  • Oil traders ordered to stop accepting U.S. dollar in exchange for crude oil
  • Order comes following calls from Russia and China to find alternatives to current reserve system
  • U.S. Dollar accounts for two-thirds of global trade
  • Venezuela has over ten-times more oil than United States
  • Super powers are gradually turning to gold to avoid using world’s main reserve currency
  • Are we seeing the beginning of the end for the U.S. dollar?

The oil-rich country of Venezuela has stopped accepting the U.S. Dollar as payment for oil.

Last week President Maduro warned that the country would this week ‘free’ itself from the US dollar. Continue reading

Juncker calls for united EU under one leader

Juncker wants a single EU president who campaigns in the 2019 elections (Photo: European Commission)

 

European Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker outlined his post-Brexit vision for a confident EU in his state of the union address on Wednesday (14 September), speaking of a Europe that has bounced back from the economic downturn and regained the political ground from populists and eurosceptics.

Juncker, in his second to last state of the union speech, has argued for a more united and effective EU that is based on freedom, equality and the rule of law, and signalled that he wants all EU countries to become full eurozone and Schengen area members by 2019 – except those with opt-outs. Continue reading

China’s New Gold-Backed Oil Benchmark to Deal Blow to U.S. Dollar

ISTOCK.COM/SELENSERGEN

 

New financial instrument gives oil-exporting nations their long-sought alternative to the petrodollar.

China will soon introduce a crude oil futures contract denominated in yuan and convertible into gold, the Nikkei Asian Review reported on September 1. Analysts say that since China is the world’s largest oil importer, the move could deal a major blow to the global influence of the United States dollar.

The contract would allow oil exporting nations such as Russia, Iran and Venezuela to conduct sales in yuan, instead of in U.S. dollars, and to then change the yuan into gold on both the Hong Kong and Shanghai exchanges. This would also allow these countries that often fall afoul of American foreign policy to circumvent dollar-based U.S. sanctions.

The Chinese government has been developing the gold-backed futures contract for years, and Oilprice.com reports that it is expected to launch this year. It will be China’s first commodities futures contract available to foreign entities, and analysts expect many oil-exporting nations and firms to find it appealing. Continue reading

Former BIS Chief Economist Warns “More Dangers Now Than In 2007”

Bloomberg

 

Having warned in the past that “the system is dangerously unacnhored,” former chief economist of the Bank for International Settlements, William White, told Bloomberg TV overnight that the current situation “looks very similar to 2008,” adding that OECD sees “more dangers” today than in 2007. Continue reading

America’s Weapons: “The Dollar and the Drone”

 

It was said that “the guinea and the gallows” were the true instruments of British imperial power.

The guinea represented the coined wealth of Great Britain.

The gallows represented its… constabulary zeal in policing restless natives.

This is the 21st century of course… a time of enlightenment.

Today’s instruments of imperial power are no longer the guinea and the gallows.

No. Today’s instruments of imperial power are “the dollar and the drone.” Continue reading

New Cases of U.S. ‘Sonic Injuries’ Reported in Cuba

According to the State Department, 21 Americans working at the U.S. Embassy in Havana, Cuba, have developed injuries related to “sonic attacks” directed at the diplomatic facility.

 

The injuries were newly reported, but appear to have been caused by previous attacks of unknown origin directed at American diplomatic staff. The Cuban government insists it had nothing to do with them, and State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert says no new “incidents” have occurred at the embassy.

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‘EU Army is Dangerous and Must be Stopped’, MP Warns

 

Britain will be the first of many nations to leave the EU, Daniel Kawczynski MP tells Westmonster.

The EU Army is dangerous, will be ‘a disaster’ and must be stopped from coming to fruition, Tory MP Daniel Kawczynski told Westmonster.

In a no holds barred interview, Kawczynski said he is absolutely certain Britain will be the first of many countries to leave the EU and added that he knows Eastern European nations are getting sick and tired of Brussels meddling in their domestic affairs. Continue reading

Russia May Send 100K Troops to NATO’s Borders

In this Aug. 2, 2017, photo, Russian paratroopers mark Paratroopers Day in Moscow’s Red Square. The Russian military says major war games, the Zapad (West) 2017 maneuvers, will not threaten anyone. Alexander Zemlianichenko/AP

 

The exercises are part of President Vladimir Putin’s effort to demonstrate Russia’s full recovery from being a military basket case following the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Russia’s Northern Fleet claimed to have sent about 50 ships, submarines and support vessels into the Barents and Baltic Seas in August on a series of anti-submarine, anti-mine and search-and-rescue operations, a Russian Navy spokesman told Russia’s Interfax news agency.

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The EU is Changing its Approach to Russia. What Awaits the Eurasian Integration?

German Chancellor Angela Merkel talks to Russia’s President Vladimir Putin at the start of the first working session of the G20 meeting in Hamburg, Germany, July 7, 2017. © Kay Nietfeld / Reuters

 

Russia’s economic growth after the crisis forced many countries thinking that Moscow will not be able to do without enormous infusion of foreign capital, to rethink their position. In the complicated relations between the EU with the US and with not the fastest pace of rapprochement with China the optimal decision for the European Union is the development of relations with Russia, but political factors complicate the implementation of this course. The post-Soviet republics of Eurasia, working with an eye to the West, are not in a hurry to increase the pace with the Russian Federation. Will Moscow grow tired of “Eurasian integration into one direction”?

Noticeable changes are occurring in the West’s representative’s estimation of relations with Russia. More and more representative of Western, primarily, European elite advocate for the “normalization” of relations with Russia and a gradual lifting of sanctions from our country. Lately Angela Merkel and Emmanuel Macron as well as other notable European politicians spoke in this vein. Thus, the president of Germany Frank-Walter Steinmeier offered to start a gradual change of sanctions against Russia in case of the realisation of the proposal of deploying peacekeepers in the Donbas. Continue reading

EU Gives Poland one Month Warning

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They face being dragged in front of the ECJ if they don’t submit.

Brussels has stepped up its war on national sovereignty, after rejecting a Polish appeal regarding changes to their judiciary, and say they risk being hauled in front of the ECJ if they refuse to comply. Continue reading

US Threatens To Cut Off China From SWIFT If It Violates North Korea Sanctions

While this sounds like a step that needed to be taken, and it is, it’s too little too late. China (and Russia) have created an alternative to SWIFT. Thus, cutting China off only means it will switch to its own and abandon the U.S. Dollar system — with Russia likely to join. In effect, it will end up hurting the United States more than the intended target(s).

Over the last decade China and Russia have feverishly worked around America’s global influence. Russia and China no longer need GPS, as they have their own indigenous satellite navigation systems — Europe, too. You’ll only do their militaries a favor if you cut that off. Control over the internet has been ceded by America, so there’s also no method or means of punishment there. The IMF has been undermined by the AIIB, so it’s also hard to do anything there as well.

America’s choices are limited and not as effective as they used to be. The joke may be on the U.S. should push come to shove. The alternatives set up only mean America will likely isolate itself should it choose punitive measures.

 

In an unexpectedly strong diplomatic escalation, one day after China agreed to vote alongside the US (and Russia) during Monday’s United National Security Council vote in passing the watered down North Korea sanctions, the US warned that if China were to violate or fail to comply with the newly imposed sanctions against Kim’s regime, it could cut off Beijing’s access to both the US financial system as well as the “international dollar system.”

Speaking at CNBC’s Delivering Alpha conference on Tuesday, Steven Mnuchin said that China had agreed to “historic” North Korean sanctions during Monday’s United Nations vote. “We worked very closely with the U.N.  I’m very pleased with the resolution that was just passed.  This is some of the strongest items.  We now have more tools in our toolbox, and we will continue to use them and put additional sanctions on North Korea until they stop this behavior.”

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