—–ON THE AGENDA—–
UDAY ON THE HILL
Alas, something to look forward to! Hopefully some perp walk-like or lite photos of Uday being escorted by security through the Capitol will emerge to hold us over until the real thing materializes! CNN reports, “Donald Trump Jr. is headed for a staff-level interview with the Senate judiciary committee Thursday and will have to appear publicly or will be subpoenaed”.
SHADOWY RUSSIAN COMPANY TOOK OUT FACEBOOK ADS DURING ELECTION
The Washington Post reports, “Representatives of Facebook told congressional investigators Wednesday that it has discovered it sold ads during the U.S. presidential election to a shadowy Russian company seeking to target voters”. According to The Washington Post, “Facebook officials reported that they traced the ad sales, totaling $100,000, to a Russian ‘troll farm’ with a history of pushing pro-Kremlin propaganda”. The Washington Post reports, “A small portion of the ads, which began in the summer of 2015, directly named Republican nominee Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton, the people said. Most of the ads focused on pumping politically divisive issues such as gun rights and immigration fears, as well as gay rights and racial discrimination.” Note, “Even though the ad spending from Russia is tiny relative to overall campaign costs, the report from Facebook that a Russian firm was able to target political messages is likely to fuel pointed questions from investigators about whether the Russians received guidance from people in the United States,” The Washington Post adds. “Facebook discovered the Russian connection as part of an investigation that began this spring looking at purchasers of politically-motivated ads, according to people familiar with the inquiry.” The Washington Post reports, “It found that 3,300 ads had digital footprints that led to the Russian company. Facebook teams then discovered 470 suspicious and likely fraudulent Facebook accounts and pages that it believes operated out of Russia, had links to the company and were involved in promoting the ads.” Former CIA Director Michael Morell wrote on Twitter, “Putin trying to weaken us deepening our social divisions.”
From The Washington Post.
VESELNITSKAYA FILLS OUT MORE DETAILS ON AGALAROV RELATIONSHIP
NBC News revisits Kremlin lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya who is famous for meeting with Donald “Uday” Trump Jr., princeling Jared Kushner and Paul Manafort at Trump Tower on June 9, 2016. While the NBC News story has a peg that Mueller has not contacted her yet (why would he? We get enough Russian disinfo without her), there are more important things in this piece. NBC News reports, “Veselnitskaya said Agalarov told her to get in touch with Kaveladze about the meeting because he had connections with the Trump team. She said she did not learn until the last minute that Kaveladze would be coming to the meeting as a representative of the Agalarov family. She said she had previously provided legal representation to the Agalarovs, but had never met Kaveladze before.”
From NBC News.
PUTIN ALL SAD-LIKE OVER THE LOSS OF T REX, REGRETS FRIENDSHIP MEDAL
Agence France Presse reports little man Vlad said, “We have given… Rex Tillerson an Order of Friendship some time ago. But it seems he has fallen in with the wrong crowd and is now steering in a different direction,” during an economic forum in Vladivostok. According to Agence France Presse, “Putin made the comments after awarding the Order of Friendship to Chinese Vice Premier Wang Yang, remarking on the growth of Chinese investment in Russia.” Breaking news: Putin continues to whine. Also, even as he awards Chinese, he must insult Americans, revealing the extent of his obsession with Western approval and acceptance. What a sad little man.
From Agence France Presse.
DARKNESS AT NUNES HEART OF DARKNESS
Business Insider reports, “The chairman of the House Intelligence” committee DARKNESS AT NUNES “threatened to hold Attorney General Jeff Sessions and FBI Director Chris Wray in contempt of Congress if they did not respond to a subpoena for documents or testimony” pertaining to the Steele dossier. According to Business Insider, “In a letter dated September 1 and obtained by CNN, Rep. Devin Nunes vented about the pair’s ‘insufficient responsiveness to the committee’s numerous Russia-investigation related requests over the past several months.’” Was he unmasked?
From Business Insider.
EU TO PROLONG SANCTIONS AGAINST EVIL PSEUDO-EMPIRE RUSSIA
Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty reports, “The European Union will prolong its asset freezes and visa bans on Russian officials and Moscow-backed separatists in Ukraine for another six months, with Russia’s new ambassador to the United States likely to remain on the list”. Yes, the incoming Russian Ambassador to the U.S., Soviet Dinosaur Anatoly Antonov, is on the list of individuals the EU and Canada have sanctioned, but not the US. According to Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, “A total of 149 people and 38 entities are expected to remain on the list.”
EU DEFENSE MINISTERS HOLD CYBER WAR CRISIS SIMULATION IN TALLINN
Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty reports, “European Union defense ministers have gathered in the Estonian capital, Tallinn, for an informal meeting that included a cyberexercise aimed at testing the bloc’s ability to respond to a potential attack by hackers on its military structures.” According to Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, “The September 7 training exercise was dubbed EU CYBRID 2017”. Citing a Reuters report, the simulation had it where “hackers would cripple the command of an EU naval mission in the Mediterranean Sea and launch a campaign on social media to discredit the operations and trigger protests”.
ZAPAD WATCH: ABOUT THOSE OBSERVERS… NATO SAYS BLOCKED
The Guardian reports, “Russia has been accused by the head of Nato of blocking the alliance from properly observing next week’s Zapad military exercises, when about 100,000 Russian troops are expected to mobilise on the EU’s eastern borders.” According to The Guardian, Jens Stoltenberg, Nato’s secretary general, said an offer from Russia and Belarus for three of their experts to attend some aspects of the huge exercise fell short of the Kremlin’s international obligations.” Sure does! The Guardian reports Stoltenberg said on a visit to an Estonian military base, “Briefings on the exercise scenario and progress; opportunities to talk to individual soldiers; and overflights over the exercise. This is something that is part of the Vienna document, an agreement regulating transparency and predictability relating to military exercises”.
From The Guardian.
RUSSIAN HUMPTY DUMPTY HACKERS RECEIVE PRISON SENTENCES
The Moscow Times reports, “A Moscow court sentenced two hackers to three years behind bars on Wednesday for leaking the emails of Kremlin-linked public figures”. The sentence comes after “Alexander Filinov and Konstantin Teplyakov were convicted of unauthorized access to data protected by law”. The Moscow Times reports, “The men are members of the notorious Shaltai Boltai (Humpty Dumpty) hacking collective that blackmailed top Russian officials by threatening to disclose their stolen data to the press. They were arrested on suspicion of accessing legally-protected computer information in November 2016.”
From The Moscow Times.
NAVALNY ATTACKED WITH SAUSAGE AT MOSCOW AIRPORT
The Moscow Times reports Russian opposition leader Alexey Navalny “was attacked with sausages as he returned from Europe.” According to Navalny’s blog, “The incident took place after a young woman approached Navalny at the arrivals gate of Moscow’s Domodedovo Airport asking to take a picture”. Navalny said, “At this point, three fiends are swooping in from behind and throwing a bunch of sausages on my shoulders”. The Moscow Times reports, “Photographs circulating on social media showed the opposition leader standing amid scattered sausages.”
From The Moscow Times.
—–KNOW YOUR ENEMY—–
COMING SOON: INFRASTRUCTURE HACKING ATTACKS
BuzzFeed reports, “A hacker group linked to the Russian government has acquired an unprecedented level of access to companies that supply power to the US power grid,” according to cyber security firm Symantec. BuzzFeed notes, “Researchers at Symantec have declined to specifically cite Russia as the culprit, though they do say it’s a state-sponsored attack,” but other security firms have tied Russia to the hacking group. According to Symantec, “attacks have largely been aimed at gaining high level credentials for operational systems,” which means that, “after you go in and remove all this malware off your networks,” it is irrelevant “if a company hasn’t changed their login credentials”. BuzzFeed reports, “The Department of Homeland Security said it was aware of the intrusions.”
“DADDY CAN I GO WITH YOU?”
TIME Magazine reports, “The President, who was in North Dakota to tout his tax reform initiative, also explained why his daughter was accompanying him, despite the fact that she is a Senior aide in the West Wing and is working on a childcare tax credit as part of the reform initiative.” Wait for it. TIME Magazine quotes Trump, “She’s so good she wanted to make the trip. She actually said “Daddy can I go with you?’” Aryan princess Ivanka is 35 years old. You can watch the video and gag again. Adulting is hard.
From TIME Magazine.
FELIX SATER HANGING OUT WITH HIS OLD TIME MOBSTER CREW
McClatchy reports Felix “Sater is again associated with some of the individuals with whom he was implicated in FBI probes of stock manipulation on Wall Street on behalf of Russian and Italian mobsters in the late 1990s. Several of the people who were convicted or faced regulatory sanctions in those probes have been working in the same suite as Sater on Haven Avenue in this affluent Long Island, N.Y., suburb.” Let’s meet some of Sater’s old friends! So there is “Advance Capital’s chairman, Gary Levi,” who “is described by several who know both men as a longtime Sater associate. The Securities and Exchange Commission charged Levi in 2003 with helping the publicly traded fashion company Candie’s, Inc., inflate its income statement to dupe investors. He consented to a cease-and-desist order and paid a $25,000 civil penalty.” According to this report, “Soon after McClatchy began asking questions about Advance Capital in late August, its website suddenly disappeared, replaced by a Go Daddy ad for domain names. Before it was taken down, the website boasted to potential customers that it offered ‘an alternative to conventional business loans.’ It’s unclear whether the business is still operating.” Turns out a bunch of people at Advance are linked to Sater and have shady pasts! An intriguing read. Will not induce confidence in the president’s choice of business partners. Also, remember when Whitewater was a big deal?
—–RADIO MOSCOW: STORIES FROM THEIR PRESS AND OURS—–
CLINTON ON FANTASY THAT RUSSIA DIDN’T INFLUENCE OUR ELECTIONS
CNN reports, “In a never-to-be confrontation with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Hillary Clinton hoped to stare down the Russian leader who US intelligence believes worked to elect her campaign rival.” Of course that’s not how history turned out. CNN reports Hillary writes, “There’s nothing I was looking forward to more than showing Putin that his efforts to influence our election and install a friendly puppet had failed”. Too bad our country is not so good as to afford her that opportunity. Hillary also writes, “I never imagined that he would have the audacity to launch a massive covert attack against our own democracy, right under our noses — and that he’d get away with it,” CNN reports. Oh, believe it! It’s the living dystopian nightmare we all must live with now! Appropriately Clinton also reserves “some of her most biting criticism for her former boss,” Obama and “wonders in her book whether a more forceful public response from then-President Barack Obama could have helped remedy the problems caused by Moscow’s attempted meddling.” Instead of making “a televised address to the nation in the fall of 2016 warning that our democracy was under attack,” so “Maybe more Americans would have woken up to the threat in time. We’ll never know.” CNN concludes, “‘This man is President of the United States,’ Clinton wrote. ‘And no one is happier than Vladimir Putin.’” Ain’t that the truth.
COMING SOON: BILL BROWDER, THE MOVIE!
The Hollywood Reporter writes, “Bill Browder passed up interest from George Clooney and Mark Boal to team with William Nicholson for an adaptation of his book about Russian corruption — putting them both in the crosshairs of the Kremlin.” According to The Hollywood Reporter, “Even before Russiagate swept Washington, Red Notice was a red-hot property in Hollywood. When the 2015 book still was in manuscript form, several in-demand writers, producers and directors chased the material, including George Clooney, Mark Boal, Steve Golin, Josh Singer and Charles Randolph. Clooney had the inside track given that his wife, human rights attorney Amal Clooney, represents Browder. George Clooney tried to set the film up at Sony, but Browder opted to go an unconventional route, retaining the rights and hiring Nicholson on his own dime.”
From The Hollywood Reporter.
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