Wednesday, July 14, 2010

The Man Behind the Mask

Igor Gouzenko (January 13, 1919 – June 28, 1982)

Given the news of the ten (10!) sleeper Russian spies recently arrested here in CONUS, and their subsequent swap for some of our USA spies:

It seems timely to note that the notion of Russian sleeper cells and the techniques of using them were first pointed out by the Russian defector Igor Gouzenko, in September 1945.

Igor, a cipher clerk employed at the Russian embassy in Ottawa, Canada, his job was coding/decoding messages for the GRU routed through the embassy. Of course, this gave him particular and timely insight to the comings and goings of Soviet espionage activities. When he learned that his relatively free lifestyle was soon to end when he would be shipped back to Russia, he decided to defect. His specialized knowledge would make him a fortunate man.

But not immediately.

He first went to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) – they thought he was a crank.

He went next to the Ottawa Journal newspaper – the night editor couldn’t be bothered.

He made it next to the Department of Justice – But nobody was there.

Finally, he went home, a briefcase full of Soviet secrets under his arm.

Fearing that that all of his frantic attempts at exposing himself to the West in trying to defect had merely exposed his efforts to his still-Soviet colleagues, he sought refuge in the apartment across the hall from his own, due to the kindness of a neighbor. His fears were not unfounded. While he and his wife Svetlana peered nervously through a keyhole, Soviet agents entered his apartment and began searching for him or anything that would help in stopping him.

The next day, he finally snagged the attention of an RCMP team, and over the course of some days and weeks, unveiled a treasure-trove of information. Indeed, in the years that followed, almost always in a mask in public appearances, his contributions would detail espionage procedures, plans, and players that while shocking at the time, woke up the Western intelligence community to a very threatening and aggressive Soviet spy cadre.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Signs that the New Soviet May Strike - Oldie But Goodie

I was looking around a bit to start this blog back up, and ran across these analyses from JR Nyquist:

Surprise nuclear missile attack - Part 1

Surprise nuclear missile attack - Part 2

I think that if you read them, they'll still be fresh, almost 11 years later. My personal musing is that with the election of GW Bush, it reset the Russian plans. After all, he was a relative hawk compared to Clinton, a warlord compared to Al Gore, and aggressively pursued missile defense. Russia was not expecting Bush to win the 2000 election - so they had to wait.

Now we have the O, willing and able to gut missile defense, voluntarily disarm a great deal of our nuclear triad, and generally act as a blabbermouth milquetoast egotist. The narrative for preparing a New Soviet strike against the West makes sense again, under these new conditions.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Something Interesting Regarding Civil War II Here and Elsewhere

I found the following while reading 'Civil War Two' by Thomas W. Chittum, page 110:

When will Civil War II actually erupt? There is no scientific formula or mathematical equation that will give us the date. Instead, we must turn our attention to the demographic forces propelling us toward Civil War II, our ongoing transformation from a stable monoethnic nation into an unstable multiethnic empire. Not all history can be explained by this single engine of demographic transformation. Other factors can and do decide the boundaries and fates of empires and nations. However, the concept of nationality has been the dominate historical factor, at least since the industrial revolution. The more monoethnic a nation is, the less chance a secondary tribe will break off and form a new nation, or unite with their co-ethnics in an adjacent nation.
The more monoethnic a nation is, the less likely a neighboring country will try to carve off a slice inhabited by its coethnics as Nazi Germany seized the Sudentenland of Czechoslovakia. The more monoethnic a nation is, the more likely its citizens will unite and fight foreign invaders, thus again increasing the chances of territorial integrity.

It is certainly a book dealing with civil unrest in the USA, but I think there is something to be said for what Chittum wrote in regards to a larger geopolitical theater. While we may have a multi-ethnic society here that is becoming increasingly balkanized, it certainly is the case of Georgia and the breakaway South Ossetia region. In the case of that chunk of Georgia being broken away, it is because the New Soviet flooded the region with Russian-ethnic citizens, thus creating a 'crisis' whereupon Russia claimed a responsibility to help them. Others have written of this strategy, and I claim no special insight on this point.

What I intend to point out is that such infiltration and prying away of territory is not exclusive to Georgia at this point in time, nor is it a new idea by those who practice it. We are experiencing such a bit of history in the United States, and it makes me wonder if our own balkanization is by design.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

More Rumblings On the Path to War?

This is something to watch, both as a story in and of itself, but as possibly part of a trend. Will there be more ministers forced from office riding inside a body bag? It seems, too, that Ingushetia is in a period of increasing instability - will the Russians ride to rescue, as they claim they are with South Osettia?

Russian ruling minister shot dead in Ingushetia

A minister was shot dead inside his ministerial office in Russia's southern region of Ingushetia, officials said.

Wednesday, 12 August 2009 11:04
World Bulletin / News Desk

A minister was shot dead inside his ministerial office in Russia's southern region of Ingushetia on Wednesday, officials said.

The construction minister, Ruslan Amerkhanov, "was shot dead by an unidentified gunman this morning" in his office, a spokesman for the local prosecutor's office said.

[Whatta name! "Ruslan Amerkhanov"? Sounds like "Russian American". No way - could that be an intentional thing? -Ed]

Russian news agencies said Amerkhanov was shot dead at point-blank range when a group of armed men burst into his office in Ingushetia's capital of Magas.

Ingush President Yunus-Bek Yevkurov is recovering after being seriously wounded in a suicide bomb attack on his motorcade on June 22...

Lest We Forget... Big Badda Boom II

The Japanese will to fight still unbroken (though shaken) by the firstorms of Hiroshima, Truman ordered the next atomic attack. On August 9th of 1945, Nagasaki was struck by Fat Man, a 21 KT weapon. On September 2nd, the Japanese formally surrendered - they had had enough.

Of course, as will all warfare technologocal innovation, a race had begun in earnest...

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Big Badda Boom

On August 6, 1945, the primary technological symbol of the Cold War was first used in anger. Today is the 64th anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Georgia Update - Russia Points a Finger at the USA (Again)

A snip from another article:

"...Meanwhile, a senior Russian diplomat voiced concern about what he said were U.S. plans to provide military assistance to Georgia.

"Washington is playing the key role in rearming the Georgian military machine," Grigory Karasin, a deputy foreign minister, said in comments carried Tuesday by the Interfax agency.

"It would be in the interests of Georgian democracy ... to refuse to arm this country at all."

The U.S. is discussing a Georgian request for $16 million in military aid this year, with most of the money intended for training and technical assistance..."