• China syndromeTelefonica Deutschland Chooses Huawei to Build Its German 5G Network

    Rebuffing U.S. pressure, German mobile provider Telefonica Deutschland announced Wednesday that it has chosen Finland’s Nokia and China’s Huawei to build its 5G network in Germany, the company. Huawei is a global leader in constructing equipment and infrastructure for ultra-high-speed 5G data networks, but the intelligence services of leading Western countries have argue that Huawei is a security threat because of its close ties with the Chinese military and intelligence establishments. 

  • The Russia connectionU.K. Intelligence Probing Russian Election Meddling

    Britain’s cybersecurity agency is investigating whether state-sponsored Russian hackers were behind the leaks of British government documents used by opposition politicians to embarrass Boris Johnson’s ruling Conservative Party ahead of Thursday’s general election.

  • ArgumentThe New Kind of Warfare Reshaping Global Politics

    The list is long: Russian internet trolls interfering in the 2016 U.S. election; Russian operatives murdering Putin’s opponents abroad; Chinese spies manipulating Australian politics while the country’s coast guard ships harass Japanese fishing fleets, and much more. Simon Clark writes that these are not random acts of autocratic aggression. Rather, they are examples of a new form of warfare which is becoming a bigger challenge for the United States and its western allies: gray-zone conflict.

  • The Russia connectionPicturesque Alpine Region Served as “Rear Base” for Russia’s GRU Agents

    The French intelligence services are leading an international hunt for Russian spies after what was described as a “rear base” of Russia’s GRU military intelligence agency was discovered in southeastern France. GRU agents used the region of the Haute-Savoie as a “stopover,” during which they would be given the final briefings before moving on to their missions in various European countries.

  • MisinformationNew Research Center Will Fight Misinformation

    On 3 December, the University of Washington launched the Center for an Informed Public (CIP). The CIP, an interdisciplinary center housed in UW’s Information School, will use applied research to engage with the public through community partners such as libraries to confront the misinformation epidemic. “If we care about common goals — things like safe communities, justice, equal opportunity — we have to care also about facts, truth and accuracy,” UW President Ana Mari Cauce said. “Misinformation can be weaponized. It has been weaponized to divide us and to weaken us.”

  • ArgumentThe Dark Psychology of Social Networks

    Every communication technology brings with it different constructive and destructive effects. Jonathan Haidt and Tobias Rose-Stockwell write that it typically takes some time to find and improve the balance between these negative and positive effects. The note that as social media has aged, the initial optimism which welcomed the new technology’s introduction has been replaced by a growing awareness of the technology deleterious effects – especially on the quality and purpose of political discussion.

  • PerspectiveFormer Envoy Huntsman: Putin Likely ‘Joyful’ About Ukraine Theory

    President Donald Trump’s former ambassador to Russia said Vladimir Putin is likely “joyful” about the renewed prominence of a debunked conspiracy theory that Ukraine was responsible for meddling in the 2016 election, which experts consider Russian disinformation.

  • The Russia connectionRussian Hackers Source of Labour Party’s “NHS for Sale” Document

    In a press conference last week, Jeremy Corbin, the leader of the Labour Party, showed the attendees a hefty document – 451 pages! — which, he claimed, was a classified government document detailing secret U.K-U.S. negotiations between the Conservative Party-led government and the United States to sell parts of the U.K. National Health Service (NHS) to American investors. Experts say Russian government hackers stole the document and handed it to Labour in order to discredit the government and deepen polarization ahead of the 12 December parliamentary election.

  • PerspectiveBritain’s Secret War with Russia

    A drab office building on the outskirts of the Swiss town of Spiez houses Switzerland’s Federal Office for Civil Protection, renowned for its work on global nuclear, chemical, and biological threats.Over the course of a few months in 2018, this outfit’s gentle existence was upended, as the lab became caught in a cold war between Russia on one side and the United Kingdom and the West on the other.

  • The Russia connectionGermany Expels Two Russian Diplomats Following Berlin Killing

    Germany has expelled two Russian diplomats in response to what the German authorities described as Russia’s refusal to cooperate in a high-profile murder. German intelligence and law enforcement agencies said that the killing of Zelimkhan Khangoshvili, a 40-year-old former Chechen rebel commander, who was shot in the head from behind in Berlin’s Kleiner Tiergarten park in August, was carried out by Russian agents on Kremlin’s orders.

  • Nuclear secretsHow the Nation’s Hydrogen Bomb Secrets Disappeared

    Given a choice of items to lose on a train, a top-secret document detailing the newly developed hydrogen bomb should be on the bottom of the list. In January 1953, amid the Red Scare and the Korean War, that’s exactly what physicist John Archibald Wheeler lost.

  • PerspectiveGraham Says He's “1,000 Percent Confident” Russia, not Ukraine, Hacked DNC

    Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) on Tuesday said he’s “1,000 percent confident” Russia was responsible for hacking the Democratic National Committee (DNC) as part of an effort to interfere in the 2016 election. He dismissed the conspiracy theory, advanced by President Trump and some of his supporters, that Ukraine played a role in the breach.Graham said he thinks it’s “always wrong to say things that can’t be proven.”

  • Perspective: The Russia connectionThe National Security Threat of Peddling Russian Disinformation

    The impeachment inquiry by the U.S. House Intelligence Committee has served as a forum for efforts by President Trump, Rudi Giuliani, and some GOP lawmakers to spread the lie fabricated by the Russian intelligence services that the interference in the 2016 U.S. election was not done by Russia to help Trump – but was carried out by Ukraine to Help Hillary Clinton! This Kremlin-fabricated canard has been thoroughly investigated by the U.S. intelligence community, and totally debunked. “Distrust is now being sown by American officials against the same government these officials purport to represent,” Cipher Brief writes.

  • The Russia connectionSenators Seek to Pass Russia Sanctions Bill to Deter Election Interference Before End of Year

    U.S. Senators are seeking to pass a bipartisan bill before the end of the year that would enable the imposition of new sanctions on Russia if it interferes in U.S. elections. Senator Chris Van Hollen (D-Maryland) said on 21 November that he is among members of the upper house of Congress who are pushing to get the sanction bill into the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).

  • ArgumentWhat Trump Really Wanted from Ukraine Was Not about Enemies

    What President Donald Trump wanted most from Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky had les to do with Joe Biden and everything to do with exonerating Russia from 2016 election meddling and pinning the blame on the Democrats and Ukraine, the historian Allan Lichtman writes in The Hill. “This conspiracy theory would serve the dual purpose of clearing Russian President Vladimir Putin from responsibility for intervening in the 2016 election and proving that Trump won the White House without Russia.”