News you may have missed #393

  • US warns Turkey against Gaza flotilla probe. London-based Arabic-language newspaper al-Hayat claimed on Saturday that US President Barack Obama told Turkish Prime Minster Recep Tayyip Erdogan that an independent inquiry into the Free Gaza Flotilla massacre “could turn into a double-edged sword” against Ankara.
  • US experts doubt North Korea sunk South Korean ship. A new study by US researchers raises questions about the investigation into the sinking of the Cheonan, a South Korean navy ship, which went down last March, killing 46 sailors. International investigators have blamed a North Korean torpedo, raising tensions on the Korean peninsula.
  • Nixon-Kissinger dialogue raises CIA assassination suspicions. A loaded dialogue between President Richard M. Nixon and his trusted national security adviser, Henry A. Kissinger, dating from 1971, appears to confirm that the CIA had a role in the 1970 assassination of Chilean army commander-in-chief Rene Schneider.

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Suspects arrested for 1981 poisoning of Chilean ex-president

Eduardo Frei

Eduardo Frei

By JOSEPH FITSANAKIS | intelNews.org |
A Chilean judge this week charged several people connected with the Augusto Pinochet dictatorship, of complicity in the 1981 murder by poisoning of former Chilean President Eduardo Frei Montalva. With the help of the CIA, Frei, a conservative centrist, became Chile’s elected leader from 1964 to 1970. In 1973, he supported the Augusto Pinochet junta movement against Chile’s elected President, Salvador Allende, but soon became disillusioned and opposed the military regime’s widespread human rights abuses. In November 1981, Frei checked into Santiago’s Santa Maria Clinic for a routine hernia operation. It was there, according to the court indictment, that several doctors connected with the Pinochet junta systematically poisoned the former Chilean President with thallium and small doses of mustard gas, which eventually killed him. Read more of this post

News you may have missed #0211

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Analysis: The role of spies in Latin America

Latin America

Latin America

By IAN ALLEN | intelNews.org |
These days it’s a full-time job keeping up with intelligence news coming out of Latin America. In recent weeks alone, there were major spy scandals involving the busting of an alleged Colombian espionage ring in Venezuela, the acknowledgment by Bogotá that it spied on Ecuador, and the ongoing high-level intelligence scandal that some say may cause recalls of diplomats between Chile and Peru. So what is going on in Latin America? How widespread is espionage in the continent and is it on the rise? The BBC’s Juan Paullier has consulted several regional and international experts for his well-written analysis on the subject. Read more of this post

News you may have missed #0191

  • Peru-Chile spy dispute deepens. Not only was senior Peruvian Air Force officer Victor Ariza Mendoza, who was arrested in Lima last Saturday, a spy for Chile, but there were six other individuals involved in the ring, according to Peruvian authorities. Peru has even asked Interpol to get involved in the affair.
  • UN-Iran in secret nuclear negotiations, says paper. The London Times has alleged that the UN’s International Atomic Energy Agency is secretly negotiating a deal to persuade world powers to lift sanctions against Iran and allow Tehran to retain the bulk of its nuclear energy program, in return for co-operation with UN inspectors.
  • Analysis: The real spy war between CIA and DNI. For months, the CIA and the office of the Director of National Intelligence fought an intense and acrimonious turf battle over covert action oversight and access to White House officials. Now new details are emerging about deeper and more sensitive conflicts between the two agencies, including which agency is responsible for oversight of the CIA’s controversial and classified Predator drone program.

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News you may have missed #0188

  • India arrests Pakistani ‘spy’ carrying documents at airport. The Delhi Police says it arrested a Pakistani spy just as he was set to board a flight to Saudi Arabia, carrying with him a set of vital documents on Indian defense installations. The man was reportedly using a fake passport bearing the name “Aamir Ali”.
  • Hezbollah claims infiltration of Israel. Lebanese militant group Hezbollah says it has infiltrated the security services of Israel and obtained vital documents regarding military activity, by “taking pictures and copying sensitive documents”.
  • Spy arrest causes major Peru-Chile diplomatic row. A senior Peruvian Air Force officer was arrested in Lima on Saturday, on charges of spying for Chile. The spying affair caused the Peruvian delegation to pull out of an Asia-Pacific summit in Singapore on Sunday.

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Ex-President Carter says US knew about 2002 Venezuela coup

Jimmy Carter

Jimmy Carter

By JOSEPH FITSANAKIS | intelNews.org |
Former US President Jimmy Carter has said that the US was aware of plans for a 2002 military-civilian coup against the government of Venezuelan leader Hugo Chávez, and that it may have even provided assistance to the coup plotters. In an interview to Colombian newspaper El Tiempo, published yesterday, Carter said there was “no doubt that in 2002 the United States had at the very least full knowledge about the coup, and could even have been directly involved”. The coup attempt took place on April 11, 2002, when President Chávez was illegally detained by the coup plotters, who also dissolved the Venezuelan National Assembly and the Supreme Court, and voided the country’s Constitution. But the move ended in failure 47 hours later, after key sectors of the military and parts of the anti-government opposition refused to side with the coup leaders. Read more of this post