WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) — Russia sought to use spies to get more information about high-frequency trading in a potential bid to destabilize the market, according to a court document released by the U.S. government on Monday.
The U.S. government on Monday made one arrest and charged two other diplomats with spying on behalf of Russia.
A leaked conversation between two Russian ambassadors appears to show the diplomats joking about the crisis in Ukraine and the possibility of future incursions in the United States and Eastern Europe.
The video posted under the YouTube account “Michael Berkan” involves Igor Nilokaevich Chubarov and Sergey Viktorovich Bakharev, the Russian ambassadors to the African nations Eritrea and Zimbabwe and Malawi, respectively.
The call begins with Chubarov congratulating Bakharev on Zimbabwe’s vote against the UN resolution that declared Crimea’s referendum invalid. Chubarov expressed surprise that Eritrea abstained from the vote.
Syria itself is a proxy country for the Soviet Union against the Western powers. If it can control countries in the Middle East, it can control the world’s oil flow. While not all of the world’s oil comes from the Middle East, it is taking advantage of the Western world’s naïveté in thinking it has to depend mostly on these countries for supplies, not its own vast reserves of domestic energy such as shale in Colorado or in Canada. Arms exporting, as noted within the article plays a huge role as well. Russia is ranked number four in the world under this category, and second in terms of export value. Nevertheless, here is The Jamestown Foundation on the strategic importance of both Syria and Turkey according to Russia:
Russia has been an unwavering supporter of President Bashar al-Assad and one of the prime suppliers of weapons to the Syrian military. Moreover, Russia and China have used their veto power in the UN Security Council to prevent sanctions and an arms embargo against Damascus. The Russian authorities reacted angrily to the plane’s interception. The Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs accused the Turks of endangering the lives of the passengers, of not allowing Russian diplomats to meet the reported 17 Russian passport-holders on board while the plane was searched, and demanded explanations (Interfax, October 11). Continue reading
President Vladimir Putin said on Monday the West’s influence was waning as its economy declines but warned Russian diplomats to be on their guard against a backlash from Moscow’s former Cold War enemies.
“Domestic socio-economic problems that have become worse in industrialized countries as a result of the (economic) crisis are weakening the dominant role of the so-called historical West,” Putin told a meeting of Russian ambassadors from across the world.
He told the envoys, gathered in Moscow, that they should try to influence events where Russian interests were at stake.
“Be ready for any development of the situation, even for the most unfavorable development,” he said in the 20-minute speech, parts of which were televised.
Putin’s speech was sprinkled with the hawkish rhetoric that has made many foreign policy experts predict a turn for the worse in relations with the United States following his return to the Kremlin in May.
The economic problems faced by the European Union are the “tip of the iceberg of unresolved structural problems that is facing the entire world economy,” he said.
Full article: Russia’s Putin says the West is on the decline (Reuters)
Clinton reportedly told her Russian counterpart to rely message to Tehran that it must engage in talks with world powers or face a military strike within months, according to Russian daily Kommersant.
The United States has asked Russia to deliver an ultimatum to Iran, warning the Islamic Republic that it has one last chance for talks before a military strike, the Kommersant daily quoted Russian diplomats as saying on Wednesday.
According to the Russian newspaper, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton asked her Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov in New York on Monday to tell Tehran that it has one last chance to solve the conflict peacefully by making progress in the talks with the P5+1 group – United States, Britain, France, Russia, China, and Germany. Otherwise, an attack on Iran’s nuclear facilities will occur within months, the diplomats said.
Full article: Report: U.S. asked Russia to warn Iran of ‘last chance’ to avoid military strike (Harretz)
While most of the focus remains fixated on espionage and technology theft within the United States, Canada has had major problems of its own — and for quite a long time. As an example: Operation Sidewinder.
This week, the Canadian government expelled four Russian diplomats, including a military attaché and two technical staff, on allegations of passing secrets back to Moscow. Not so coincidentally, last weekend Canadian authorities arrested a naval intelligence officer in Halifax, Sub.-Lt. Jeffrey Paul Delisle, on charges of passing secrets to a “foreign power.” The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation confirms that some of the Russian embassy expulsions are related to the Delisle arrest.
According to court documents, the 40-year-old Delisle faces two charges under Canada’s Security of Information Act that deal with communicating information that could harm the country’s interests. On Tuesday, Defence Minister Peter MacKay described the case as “a matter of national security” because of the charges involved, but he would not elaborate, including whether the “foreign power” in question was Russia.
Continue reading article: Communism with Canadian Characteristics: Naval intelligence officer arrested in Halifax, charged with passing secrets to “foreign power,” Ottawa “fed” false information to Moscow after suspicions aroused… (Once Upon a Time in the West)