Monday, June 28, 2010

Russian Spy Bust

In the Times story about 11 Russians spies being arrested across the country for impersonating suburbanites, we get the quote of the day:
“They couldn’t have been spies,” Ms. Gugigi said. “Look what she did with the hydrangeas.”
Heh, sorta the point, although they were evidently less successful in fooling the Feds.

The questions might be: who did they befriend, who was helping them, and what did they want from the "policyakers"? As to the latter, probably standard intel, such as reporting on coming policies unless they were trying to affect policies. They have been here a decade, meaning near or perhaps before 9/11. Many were around New York and Boston--did they know anything? Who tipped off the Feds to watch them? Or was it through the TSP or various NSA spy programs? Also, since they were seen receiving bags of cash it might be useful to know where some of it went (besides their daily sustenance).

At any rate, the FBI deserves kudos for busting the ring, that is unless Hillary's re-set button actually smoked them out. As to how this might affect Russian-US relations going forward, just speculating, but probably not at all, since the media will likely let it die and Obama will never be asked a question about it. But I could be wrong!


This story, which seems a tad World Net Daily-ish, purports recent concern in the Kremlin for the socialist direction Obama is taking the country vis a vis a new anti-terrorism bill targeting home-grown terrorists. Don't recall hearing anything about it in the midst of the BP oil disaster (who knows what else might slip through while people are watching the oil) but then again it's possible the Rooskies are distorting its purpose. The long term goal of the Soviets was to destroy America from within, and how better to do it than by fostering derision against the president?

But then again, damn:
(3) The Internet has aided in facilitating violent radicalization, ideologically based violence, and the homegrown terrorism process in the United States by providing access to broad and constant streams of terrorist-related propaganda to United States citizens.
Didn't they just bring up a 'turn off the web' bill the other day? Hmm. Well, patriotic Americans must assume these bills are for our good, targeted towards real threats such as AQ or Hizb'allah sleepers, drug cartel members, former Weather Underground terrorists posing as professors or even pretend Russian suburbanites. But then again it's hard to tell anymore in this crazy world.

MORE 6/28/10

More coming out on their connections:
Cynthia Murphy last year was assigned the account of a New York-based financier described as a fundraiser "for a major political party" who is "a personal friend" of a Cabinet member's.

"Try to build up little by little relations with him moving beyond just (work) framework," said an intercepted communication from "Moscow Center."
So they got as close as a friend of a cabinet member. Nice. Well, with tensions high in the middle east, shall we question the timing on rolling up this long term espionage ring?

WAGs 6/29/10

Let's say the FBI is telling the truth that they had these clowns under surveillance as far back as 2004. What kind of hack spies are the Russians fielding? How could they go 6 years, using what sound like Hollywood spycraft, and not ever realize they were being watched? Keep in mind if we were watching them they weren't doing any harm to national security, by default.

So, let's say they knew they were being watched. Why were they here? As the former KGB guy says, it's a big waste. Well, maybe they were here as fake spies, meant to be popped out to embarrass some head of state or change the diplomatic dynamic. They start going to ground right after their meathead president was just over here eating hellburgers and Bill Clinton scheduled for an appointment today with Pooty? The timing simply must be questioned.

But if so, what bang for the buck are they getting? Obama's media coating of teflon will prevent much damage here, so maybe the answer lies in how the Russian people will react.

Finally, of course Obama knew about this before the visit. Bush clearly knew about the team as well, since the FBI tends to inform administrations of things like this. And no, none of this is man bites dog stuff with the expection of the timing of the bust. They say it was because one of the agents was slipping off to Russia but if they hadn't gained any intel, so what? Why was it important to publicly nab them, if they had been undercover for 10 years and largely ineffective?


Debbie said...

The media is saying this morning that when the names of the people these 'spies' got close to is announced, their American contacts and sources, that will be the HUGE story. Knowing the Americans who were willing to work with them should be interesting.

As I think the BBC noted, they do seem pretty tame for spies.

Right Truth

A.C. McCloud said...

I admit to being perplexed. The Rooskies are also questioning the timing but why wouldn't they? If Obama was behind the outing their guy looks like a total fool and it changes the entire reset game.

Of course if O was not behind this timing then what, a low-level coup is in progress? The FBI would have no reason to kneecap the prez like that.

Dr Purva Pius said...
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