1:48 PM 12/15/2017 – UK defense chief says Russia poses risk to undersea cables

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Communist Parties’ Victory in Nepal May Signal Closer China Ties – New York Times
Trump’s ‘personal insecurities’ impair US response to a security threat – MSNBC
NYC Woman Charged With Laundering Money Through Cryptocurrencies to ISIS
DOJ: Early Media Release of FBI Agents Texts Were Not Authorized
What Is Vladimir Putin Really Up To? Carnegie Scholars Aim To Find Out.
A New Industrial Hack Highlights the Cyber Holes in Our Infrastructure – MIT Technology Review
This Is the Navy’s Master Plan to Kill China’s Aircraft Carriers
White House: FBI records show ‘extreme bias’ against Trump – Washington Times
Donald Trump says FBI documents prove bias against him, favoritism for Hillary Clinton
Trump administration rolls out global campaign to combat those who overstay their visas in the US – Washington Examiner
Suspected North Korean cyber group seeks to woo bitcoin job seekers – Reuters
A prayer for CIA accountability that will likely go unanswered – Washington Post
Top US Army general in Europe retires after 3 busy years at helm
Trump calls conduct at FBI disgraceful before appearing at Quantico
Russia, N. Korea Eye Bitcoin for Money Laundering, Putting It on a Crash Course with Regulators
Daily Reads: Net Neutrality Repeal a Brutal Blow to Democracy – BillMoyers.com
Tillerson offers olive branch to North Korea if it abandons nuclear weapons
Trump To FBI Academy Graduates: “The President Of The United States Has Your Back” – RealClearPolitics
Dutch police shoot man with a knife at Amsterdam airport
ISIS may have obtained anti-tank missiles from the CIA – Business Insider
In the FBI’s Backyard, Trump Snubs the Bureau – Daily Beast
House Intelligence Panel Is Rushing to Complete Russia Probe – New York Times
Trump laments FBI, lauds law enforcement – WLWT Cincinnati
Trump Praises Putin and Rants Incoherently About the FBI from White House Lawn – AlterNet

 

Saved Stories – None
UK defense chief says Russia poses risk to undersea cables

LONDON (AP) – The head of Britain’s military says Russia could try to sever undersea communications cables, and protecting them is a defense priority for NATO.

Air Chief Marshal Stuart Peach says cutting or disrupting the cables could have a “potentially catastrophic” economic effect.

Peach told an audience at the …

Communist Parties’ Victory in Nepal May Signal Closer China Ties – New York Times


New York Times
Communist Parties’ Victory in Nepal May Signal Closer China Ties
New York Times
KATHMANDU, Nepal Communist parties in Nepal with closer ties to neighboring China have emerged victorious in the country’s largest democratic exercise ever. A powerful political coalition of two communist parties led by former prime ministers
With eye on China, India to step up relations with NepalEconomic Times

all 56 news articles »

Trump’s ‘personal insecurities’ impair US response to a security threat – MSNBC


MSNBC
Trump’s ‘personal insecurities’ impair US response to a security threat
MSNBC
The result is without obvious parallel in U.S. history, a situation in which the personal insecurities of the president and his refusal to accept what even many in his administration regard as objective reality have impaired the government’s 
SitRep: Trump and Putin Chat; White House Staffers Rip Into Tillerson and McMasterForeign Policy (blog)

all 6 news articles »

NYC Woman Charged With Laundering Money Through Cryptocurrencies to ISIS

A Long Island woman A woman in Long Island has been accused of bank fraud and laundering more than $85,000 worth of Bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies to support the Islamic State.

The Department of Justice said on Thursday that the 27-year-old woman, Zoobia Shahnaz, is being charged with bank fraud, conspiracy to commit money laundering, and three counts of money laundering, ABC News reported.

“The defendant defrauded numerous financial institutions and obtained over $85,000 in illicit proceeds, which she converted to Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies,” the Department of Justice DOJ explained in a statement about the unsealed five-count federal court indictment.

“She then laundered and transferred the funds out of the country to support the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS),” the DOJ statement continued. “After consummating the scheme, the defendant attempted to leave the United States and travel to Syria. Shahnaz, a U.S. citizen, was arrested yesterday.”

According to the court record, Shahnaz worked as a lab technician in a hospital in Manhattan up until June 2017, and around June 2016 she volunteered in Jordan with the Syrian American Medical Society.

As part of her volunteer work, she was working in a refugee camp where the prosecutors said “ISIS exercises significant influence.”

Shahnaz’s Shahnazs attorney, Steve Zissou, said she never attempted to help ISIS and ISIS, she only wanted to help the Syrian refugees she had come across while volunteering.

“Whatever she did was for humanitarian purposes only,” Zissou said.

Yet prosecutors claim Shahnaz fraudulently obtained six credit cards and a loan from a Manhattan bank, which she then used to procure $85,000 to convert to cryptocurrencies in order to transfer the funds overseas and provide financial support to from ISIS. Agents have accused the Long Island resident of providing conflicting explanations about the wire transfers.

Shahnaz was suspected of foul play while attempting to board a suspicious flight at JFK airport in New York City on July 31. She was questioned by law enforcement officials at the airport while attempting to board a flight to Pakistan with a layover in Turkey. Her return flight was booked for Sept. 4 from Istanbul, Turkey back to JFK.

Prosecutors pointed out that ISIS recommends those who wish to travel and join ISIS buy round trip tickets because it appears less suspicious.

She is being held without bail, pending trial. Her next court date is Jan. 5.

The post NYC Woman Charged With Laundering Money Through Cryptocurrencies to ISIS appeared first on Washington Free Beacon.

DOJ: Early Media Release of FBI Agents Texts Were Not Authorized

The Department of Justice on Thursday acknowledged that (DOJ) has acknowledged some members of the media received copies of texts between two FBI agents before members of Congress did, and saidbut  the disclosures “were not authorized.”

In  the statement to Politico, Department of Justice DOJ spokeswoman Sarah Isgur Flores said key members of the House Judiciary Committee were given copies of the texts between Peter Strzok and Lisa Page ahead of Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein’s public testimony on Wednesday, Business Insider reports.

Some messages between Strzok and Page expressed support for Hillary Clinton and disdain toward then-presidential candiate Donald Trump during the 2016 election.

Strzok was part of the operation overseeing the Clinton email investigation, and both agents worked for a time on the special counsel investigation into alleged Russian meddling and collusion. Once the texts were uncovered over the summer, Strzok was removed from special counsel Robert Mueller’s Muellersinvestigation and relegated to the FBI’s human-resources department. Page had previously left her stint on the team before Mueller’s office was made aware of the text messages.

After sharing the text messages with lawmakers, the Department of Justice’s DOJs public affairs division then shared the same messages with reporters, but some members of the media “had already received copies.”

“As we understand now, some members of the media had already received copies of the texts before thatbut that but those disclosures were not authorized by the department,” Flores said.

The text were uncovered in July as part of an ongoing investigation by the Department of Justice’s DOJinspector general into how the FBI handled the probe into Clinton’s use of a private email server while serving as secretary of state.

Department of Justice DOJ official on Wednesday told Business Insider the department “often” provided reporters with the information they give to congressional Congressional committees to “avoid any confusion.”

The department’s DOJs statements were made in response to Democratic ranking members of the House Judiciary Committee asking for an explanation of the early media release, and inquiring whetherif the Office of Inspector General (OIG) was consulted before the release. The Democrats also sent a similar letter to Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz.

The department DOJ consulted with a senior career ethics adviser advisor who, despite Flores’ description that the release was not initially authorized, authorize, “determined that there were no legal or ethical concerns, including under the Privacy Act, that prohibited the release of the information to the public either by members of Congress or by the department,” Politico reported.

Rosenstein also addressed the release of information to the media on Wednesday during the public hearing.

“Generally speaking, our goal is to be as forthcoming with the media as we can, when it is lawful and appropriate to do so,” Rosenstein said during the hearing. “So I would not approve anybody disclosing something that was not appropriate to disclose.”

The post DOJ: Early Media Release of FBI Agents Texts Were Not Authorized appeared first on Washington Free Beacon.

What Is Vladimir Putin Really Up To? Carnegie Scholars Aim To Find Out.

The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace is about to launch a two-year analysis of Russia’s activist foreign and military policies.
A New Industrial Hack Highlights the Cyber Holes in Our Infrastructure – MIT Technology Review


MIT Technology Review
A New Industrial Hack Highlights the Cyber Holes in Our Infrastructure
MIT Technology Review
Freshly discovered malware called Triton can compromise safety systems that control many kinds of industrial processes. For years, security experts have been warning that hackers can disable systems that control critical infrastructure we all rely on 
Nation-State Believed Responsible for ‘Watershed’ Cyber Attack on Industrial PlantInsurance Journal
Hackers halt plant operations in watershed cyber attackReuters
Cyber experts identify new malware targeting critical infrastructureThe Hill
FireEye –Dragos
all 43 news articles »
This Is the Navy’s Master Plan to Kill China’s Aircraft Carriers

James Holmes

Security, Asia

Beijing won’t like this one bit.

Fortress China is festooned with airfields and mobile antiship weaponry able to strike hundreds of miles out to sea. Yes, the U.S. Navy remains stronger than the PLA Navy in open-sea battle. A fleet-on-fleet engagement isolated from shore-based reinforcements would probably go Americas way. But that hypothetical result may not make much difference since the two navies are more likely to join battle in confined Asian waters than on the open ocean.

Ah, yes, the carrier-killer. China is forever touting the array of guided missiles its weaponeers have devised to pummel U.S. Navy nuclear-powered aircraft carriers (CVNs). Most prominent among them are its DF-21D and DF-26 antiship ballistic missiles (ASBMs), which the Peoples Liberation Army (PLA) has made a mainstay of Chinas anti-access/area-denial (A2/AD) defenses.

Recommended: North Korea Has 200,000 Soldiers in Its Special Forces

Recommended: Why Doesn’t America Kill Kim Jong Un?

Recommended: 1.2 Million Casualties: If North Korea Attacked Los Angeles with a Nuclear Weapon

Beijing has made believers of important audiences, including the scribes who toil away at the Pentagon producing estimates of Chinese martial might. Indeed, the most recent annual report on Chinese military power states matter-of-factly that the PLA can now use DF-21Ds to attack ships, including aircraft carriers, more than nine hundred statute miles from Chinas shorelines.

Read full article

White House: FBI records show ‘extreme bias’ against Trump – Washington Times


Washington Times
White House: FBI records show ‘extreme bias’ against Trump
Washington Times
Deputy press secretary Hogan Gidley told Fox News Channel that edits to former FBI Director James BComey’s statement on Hillary Clinton’s private email server and text messages from a top agent critical of Trump are deeply troubling. There is 

and more »

Donald Trump says FBI documents prove bias against him, favoritism for Hillary Clinton

Responding to revelations that a top FBI official in the Russia investigation showed bias against him in text messages, President Trump said Friday that the episode was “disgraceful” and that he will reform the law-enforcement agency to be “bigger and better than ever.”

“It is very sad when you look …

Trump administration rolls out global campaign to combat those who overstay their visas in the US – Washington Examiner

Trump administration rolls out global campaign to combat those who overstay their visas in the US
Washington Examiner
The Trump administration will begin requiring countries with high rates of citizens overstaying select visas in the U.S. to launch campaigns educating people against breaking U.S. immigration laws, senior administration officials announced Friday. The 

Suspected North Korean cyber group seeks to woo bitcoin job seekers – Reuters


Reuters
Suspected North Korean cyber group seeks to woo bitcoin job seekers
Reuters
FRANKFURT (Reuters) – The surging price of cryptocurrencies in global markets is catching the eye not just of ordinary retail investors but a cybercrime gang with links to the North Korean government, according to cyber researchers tracing the group’s

and more »

A prayer for CIA accountability that will likely go unanswered – Washington Post


Washington Post
A prayer for CIA accountability that will likely go unanswered
Washington Post
The CIA has long tried to recruit young people by offering them career opportunities with the promise of excitement, intrigue and patriotism. Be accountable to the President, Congress, and the American public, reads one recent announcement directed
Former CIA Director: With Trump, I Didn’t Think Through The Downside Of The Intel Community Becoming PoliticalTownhall
York: Of course, intelligence agencies out to get TrumpPeoria Journal Star

all 4 news articles »

Top US Army general in Europe retires after 3 busy years at helm

The Army general who oversaw the most significant buildup of U.S. troops and infrastructure since the end of the Cold War retired Friday after more than three years in command.

Trump calls conduct at FBI disgraceful before appearing at Quantico

President weighs in revelations senior FBI officials exchanged text messages denouncing Trump and supportive of Hillary Clinton.

Russia, N. Korea Eye Bitcoin for Money Laundering, Putting It on a Crash Course with Regulators

Traders work in a trading pit at the Chicago Board Options Exchange, Monday, Dec. 11, 2017, in Chicago, as they trade S&P 500 Options, unrelated to bitcoin futures. Trading in Bitcoin futures began Sunday on the CBOE.
Daily Reads: Net Neutrality Repeal a Brutal Blow to Democracy – BillMoyers.com


BillMoyers.com
Daily Reads: Net Neutrality Repeal a Brutal Blow to Democracy
BillMoyers.com
The Daily Beast flagged a detail that might have been a front-page story unto itself: When Director of National IntelligenceJames RClapper Jr., CIA Director John Brennan and FBI Director James B. Comey all went to see Donald Trump together during 

Tillerson offers olive branch to North Korea if it abandons nuclear weapons

Speaking at the United Nations, the secretary of state indicated the United States wants a sustained cessation of North Koreas threatening behavior before talks can begin.

Trump To FBI Academy Graduates: “The President Of The United States Has Your Back” – RealClearPolitics


RealClearPolitics
Trump To FBI Academy Graduates: “The President Of The United States Has Your Back”
RealClearPolitics
In the middle of a series of conflicts with intelligence and law enforcement agencies, President Trump spoke Friday to graduates of the FBI Academy in Quantico, VA. He told the new agents to remember: “When you go home to your local precincts, I want 

Dutch police shoot man with a knife at Amsterdam airport

Dutch military police say they have shot a man after he threatened to use a knife at Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport.

ISIS may have obtained anti-tank missiles from the CIA – Business Insider


Business Insider
ISIS may have obtained anti-tank missiles from the CIA
Business Insider
In the same year, sources with knowledge of the Syrian conflict reportedly said that the CIA was establishing small rebel units capable of taking down tanks and had received anti-tank missiles, a BuzzFeed News report said. Although the exact process in
The Sudden Surge of Media Coverage on the CIA’s Arming of ISISMintpress News (blog)

all 44 news articles »

In the FBI’s Backyard, Trump Snubs the Bureau – Daily Beast


Daily Beast
In the FBI’s Backyard, Trump Snubs the Bureau
Daily Beast
It was Trump’s first speech as president on FBI territory. Only he didn’t direct it at FBI agents, analysts or traineesbut instead at the police officers from around the country and the world whom the bureau instructs for at its National Academy 
Republicans alarmed by ‘frightening’ anti-Trump texts between FBI employeesWJLA
Former Federal Prosecutor: To Maintain Credibility, Mueller Needs to Make More ChangesTownhall
FBI agents spoke negatively about Democrats, tooAxios
Shareblue Media –BizPac Review –Fox News
all 186 news articles »
House Intelligence Panel Is Rushing to Complete Russia Probe – New York Times


New York Times
House Intelligence Panel Is Rushing to Complete Russia Probe
New York Times
The committee has scheduled sessions there with Rhona Graff, Mr. Trump’s longtime executive assistant, and Felix Sater, a Trump associate who boasted that he could help engineer a real estate deal with the aid of President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia 

and more »

Trump laments FBI, lauds law enforcement – WLWT Cincinnati


WLWT Cincinnati
Trump laments FBI, lauds law enforcement
WLWT Cincinnati
There is extreme bias against this president with high-up members of the team there at the FBI who were investigating Hillary Clinton at the time, Gidley charged, as special counsel Robert Mueller pushes on with a probe of possible Trump campaign 

and more »

Trump Praises Putin and Rants Incoherently About the FBI from White House Lawn – AlterNet


AlterNet
Trump Praises Putin and Rants Incoherently About the FBI from White House Lawn
AlterNet
President Donald Trump delivered an angry rant on the White House lawn in front of reporters on Friday in which he ranted about both the Department of Justice and the FBI. When reporters stopped Trump on the White House lawn Friday morning to ask him 

and more »


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