Spy agencies closely monitoring climate change talks

Defence Signals Directorate logo

DSD logo

By JOSEPH FITSANAKIS | intelNews.org |
I have written before about the increasing involvement of intelligence agencies in ongoing climate change negotiations between the world’s governments. In October, the CIA announced the establishment of its Center on Climate Change and National Security, despite fierce opposition by Republican lawmakers. Earlier this month, it was alleged that the hackers who stole and leaked onto the Internet hundreds of University of East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit emails were operating via a Russian military and security network, a claim that has been disputed by the Russian FSB (Federal Security Service). However, a recent article in Australian daily The Canberra Times provides the first mainstream indication that a Western intelligence agency is “giving top priority” to the 2009 United Nations Climate Change Conference currently taking place in Denmark. Read more of this post

Comment: Did Russian Intelligence Hack Climate-Change Emails?

Tomsk, Siberia

Tomsk, Siberia

By JOSEPH FITSANAKIS* | intelNews.org |
For over a fortnight, the world’s news services have focused on the so-called ‘Climategate’, the hundreds of University of East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit emails that were hacked from the university’s server and leaked onto the Internet. The stolen emails, some of which date back to 1996, have reignited conspiracy theories about the role of human activity in climate change. But there is surprisingly little discussion about who hacked into the university’s server and stole the personal emails.

Read more of this post

Is Pakistani-American insurgent a rogue CIA agent?

By IAN ALLEN | intelNews.org |
Earlier this month US authorities said they wouldn’t let an Indian intelligence team question Pakistani-American David Coleman Headley, who was arrested by the FBI in October for plotting an attack on a Danish newspaper that published cartoons of the prophet Muhammad. The Indians said they wanted to talk to Headley, born Daood Gillani, about his reported association with Lashkar-e-Taiba, a Pakistani militant group responsible for several high-profile attacks inside India. But US officials blamed “bureaucratic” and “procedural” hurdles for denying Indian investigators access to Headley. Considering the close security ties between Washington and New Delhi, intelligence observers were surprised by the US move. Why did the FBI bar Indian intelligence from questioning Headley? Some Indian commentators suggest an intriguing theory: that Headley may be “an undercover agent whom the [US] authorities are shielding from the media and the hapless Indian investigators who were told to take a hike when they came to [Washington to] interview [him]”. Read more of this post

News you may have missed #0180

  • UK spy tip led to Zazi arrest in New York. British spies tipped off their American counterparts to what has been described as “the most serious terrorist plot foiled in the US since 9/11”, which led to the recent arrest of Najibullah Zazi in New York.
  • US prevents Indian spies’ access to jailed Islamist. US authorities won’t let an Indian intelligence team question American Muslim David Coleman Headley, who was arrested last month for traveling to Denmark in order to plot an attack on a newspaper targeted by Islamic extremist group Lashkar-e-Taiba, because it published cartoons of the prophet Muhammad. Sources blamed “bureaucratic” and “procedural” hurdles. Hmmm…
  • Largest military deal in Israeli history taking shape. The largest defense deal in Israel’s history, the purchase of 25 F-35 stealth fighters, is advancing, as talks continue between Israel, the Pentagon, and Lockheed Martin.

Bookmark and Share

News you may have missed #0131

  • CIA active in UK, British MPs told. Charles Farr, the head of the British Home Office’s office of security and counter-terrorism, told members of the British Parliament that Britain had a “very close” relationship with the US intelligence community and that “declared” CIA personnel are active in the British Isles. IntelNews readers have been aware since last January that the CIA has been conducting “unprecedented intelligence-gathering operations in Britain”.
  • Denmark’s military spy chief resigns amid soldier book scandal. The publication of a book by Thomas Rathsack, former member of Jaegerkorps, an elite army unit, which reveals systematic breach of Geneva Convention directives by members of the unit deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan, has prompted the resignation of the country’s military intelligence chief. Tim Sloth Joergensen announced his resignation on Sunday.
  • Wife of poisoned Russian spy criticizes Moscow visit. The widow of former KGB spy Alexander Litvinenko, who was assassinated by radiation poison in London, where he was living after defecting to the UK, has criticized the prospect of a visit to Moscow by Britain’s Foreign Secretary, David Miliband. “That [Mr. Miliband’s] visit will take place exactly on the third anniversary of my husband’s poisoning is adding insult to injury”, said Marina Litvinenko.

Bookmark and Share

News you may have missed #0116

  • Australia blocks Chinese mining investment on security grounds. The Australian government has for the second time this year vetoed a multi-billion dollar mining project involving a Chinese company, on national security grounds (did someone say Rio Tinto?). The veto follows news earlier this month that the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) investigated the Australian subsidiary of Chinese telecommunications company Huawei Technologies because of its rumored links with China’s intelligence establishment.
  • Declassified files reveal massive FBI data-mining project. An immense FBI data-mining system billed as a tool for hunting terrorists is being used in hacker and domestic criminal investigations, and now contains tens of thousands of records from private corporate databases, including car-rental companies, large hotel chains and at least one national department store, according to declassified documents.
  • Book by Danish special forces soldier reveals dirty tricks. A Danish court has turned down an appeal by the country’s military to ban the publication of a book by Thomas Rathsack, former member of Jaegerkorps, an elite army unit. Among other things, the book reveals systematic breach of Geneva Convention directives by members of the unit deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Bookmark and Share

Danish Commission absolves secret services of Cold War violations

Leif Aamand

Leif Aamand

By IAN ALLEN | intelNews.org |
Something is rotten in the state of Denmark. In 1999, the Danish government set up the Police Intelligence Service (PET) Commission to review PET’s practice of keeping files on Danish citizens during the Cold War. After ten years, 4,600 pages and $13 million in public funds, the Commission has announced that PET’s activities during the Cold War largely fell within its mandate and that the organization was “never […] a state [with]in a state that acted according to its own norms”. The Commission concluded this despite discovering that PET systematically violated a September 1968 government decree preventing government departments from keeping files on Danish citizens based on their legal political activities. The Commission’s report reveals that the violation was authorized by a secret memorandum from the Danish Ministry of Justice, which allowed PET to continue its political vetting of Danish citizens. As a result, PET amassed detailed files on approximately 300,000 Danes, targeting mostly “Trotskyists, anarchists and left-wing revolutionary groups”, as well as members of Denmark’s Left Socialist Party. Read more of this post

%d bloggers like this: