Can we Finally Now Turn the Page?

Every dictatorship needs a devil.  And the dictatorship that is the modern Democrat Party – with several Republican allies – has their devil in Russia.

By Wallace Brushweiler and William Palumbo

When it comes to President-Elect Donald J. Trump and his swift-acting transition team, day-to-day politics are being criminalized.  Every occurrence is another outrage, an unparalleled indignity for the country with no precedent in modern history.*

For example, Trump’s own businesses.  Everybody knew long before Trump ran for President that he was a billionaire with a sprawling, worldwide commercial empire.  But now that he has won the election and in the process of disentangling himself from the Trump Organization, his enemies are already speculating about impeachment over precisely the issue emoluments.  (Just out of curiosity: did these same people consciously overlook the Clinton Foundation during Hillary’s tenure as Secretary of State… yes!)

That’s but only one outrage among the left movement today.  The latest two manufactured, melodramatic and plain silly outrages both predictably cite a common devil shared by the Democrats and many in the Republican establishment: Russia.

Rex Tillerson vs. John Kerry

Mr. Rex Tillerson is the CEO of ExxonMobil, one of, if not the, largest companies in the world.  The company he directs has energy-related projects across the world’s continents and around its oceans, including in Russia.  In 2012, Russian President Vladimir Putin awarded Tillerson the Russian Order of Friendship.

Now you might be thinking: Why is this Russian connection of Tillerson more disqualifying than the Bush family’s close association with Saudi monarchs, or ExxonMobil’s own interests in Qatar, two known sources of terrorist financing?  Excellent question.

Speaking of terror states, let’s get to the source.  John Kerry, who unfortunately is the current Secretary of State, is related by family links to his Iranian counterpart, Javad Zarif.  Iran is the number one sponsor of Islamic terrorism around the world.  Thanks to John Kerry, they also find themselves with more influence, money, and international acceptance than they have since the days of the western friendly Shah Mohammad Reza.

Do you remember hearing the media, the pundits, or Washington establishment complain John “Ketchup” Kerry’s close connections to the regime that chants “Death to America!” each Friday afternoon?  This relationship is more substantial than some government-given honor.  It’s all in the family … and some.

Up until now, nothing negative has been announced about Tillerson.  The same cannot be said about Kerry and his gang.

Russian Hack Attack?  So says Barack Hussein Obama and John Brennan

Ever looking to discredit and cast aspersion on the impending Trump presidency, the CIA has concluded that Russia hacked its way to a Donald Trump victory.  The so-called evidence?  Allegedly, Russia also hacked the Republican National Committee, but did not release the information to WikiLeaks, like they (allegedly) did with DNC information.  Ergo, Vladimir Putin’s government unfairly advantaged Donald Trump.

There’s just one small problem with this manipulative story: RNC Chairman Reince Priebus denies they were ever hacked in the first place.  The “hack” of the DNC was an inside job by some disillusioned Democrats .

One may be tempted to call this Russian fear mongering modern day McCarthyism – seeing “Reds under the Bed.”  Yet, do you recall Putin every calling for world revolution and the destruction of Western civilization, like his predecessors in the U.S.S.R.?  Do they chant this every Sunday morning after mass, like they do in Iran on Friday’s after mosque?

Senators John McCain and Lindsay Graham, predictably soft, joined their Democrat counterparts in the Senate – among them, the poisonous propagandist Chuck Schumer – and issued the following statement:

“Recent reports of Russian interference in our election should alarm every American … Democrats and Republicans must work together, and across the jurisdictional lines of the Congress, to examine these recent incidents thoroughly and devise comprehensive solutions to deter and defend against further cyber-attacks.”

Reminder: These are the same two Republican Senators who acted as special pleaders, in concert with Barack Hussein Obama, today’s sitting president, for the Muslim Brotherhood’s Mohamed Morsi.  Morsi’s first trip abroad as President of Egypt was to Iran, to visit Kerry’s buddies in the Iranian government.

Luckily for posterity, the FBI conducted a thorough examination of Russian interference into the election and declared there was no evidence to support the claim.

Politicized DOJ, Politicized CIA

The election of 2016 proved that our federal institutions have become discouragingly politicized.  The Department of Justice bent into a pretzel folded like a double helix while attempting to rationalize their reluctance to prosecute of Hillary Clinton.

Obama, while bogged down in swamp of actual scandals in 2014, famously referred to them as “phony scandals.”

Would the CIA under John Brennan, former National Security Advisor to Obama, dare to misinform the American public with a truly phony scandal, and raise the specter of Russian intelligence active measures where there were none?  Is Attorney General Loretta Lynch blind in her pursuit of justice?

To believe the Democrats, some Republicans, and the entire media today, is to believe that Trump going, unannounced, to dinner with his family is not only scandalous, but downright perilous to our democracy.

Speaking of phony, you know what really is?  Obama, and his thoroughly fraudulent administration.  Kindly, we have not covered the Podesta travesty here.

Note to those who are undermining the incoming President – Barack Hussein Obama, Hillary, and the rest of the gang – you are just a bunch of crying baby losers.

* Unless comparable to another so-called devil, the disproportionally maligned Richard Nixon.

World Patent Marketing Reviews DARPA: Inventions for the Future on a $3 Billion Budget

While we at World Patent Marketing like to think of ourselves as cutting edge when it comes to inventing, I must admit we have a very difficult time keeping up with the folks at DARPA.  Sure we have an impressive group that includes some great patriots like Ambassador Dell Dailey, Navy Admiral Al Konetzni, Former US Attorney Matthew Whitaker, General Nitzan Nuriel of the Israel Defense Forces, Presidential Advisory Council Member Dr. Aileen Marty, War Hero Brian Mast, and so on.  When it comes right down to it,  DARPA’s  $2,973,036,000 annual budget goes a long way.  And that is just what we know about.  Digital communications, jets that are invisible to radar, weather wars, and self-driving cars, all come from one agency. The weird, the scary, the sci fi, the creepy, and the cutting edge, all come from the same source, a United States weapons program. They are all DARPA inventions.

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, commonly known as DARPA, is the super-secret research agency. It is the place where the most advanced weapons and communications systems are developed to keep the United States on top in terms of military technology. If a project feels like it came right out of an episode of Star Trek, it probably came out of DARPA.  DARPA has the luxury of unlimited budget and unlimited brain power.

While DARPA’s mission is to create advanced weapons systems, many of them have found their way into our everyday lives. Most famously, the internet is a DARPA product, something all of us rely upon for everyday communications and business. Many other advanced inventions that have shaped our modern world are DARPA inventions. Read on, to find out how the most secret and controversial agency of the military industrial complex has shaped our modern world.

DARPA Inventions Changed the World

The Internet:  This is a DARPA invention. It was originallyWorld Patent Marketing created as a “fail-safe” communications system. Back in the days when the internet used the landline telephone network, it was designed so that it could never be shut down. The internet used the existing landline phone system, but the address protocols allowed it to use any connection between them. Thus, if the telephone lines between Miami and Washington were down, the internet would find a way to its destination connection, by going through Dallas or Los Angeles, or even going overseas before finally reaching its destination.

It then was adapted to computers, which used the phone system to communicate with each other. Digital communications made it possible for the computers to communicate more easily and accurately. By 1972, the first email had been created and sent.

Eventually, the system which had been developed for military use, was released to the public. Universities and colleges were early adapters, using the internet for campus communications and library systems. Private businesses were given access and developed easy to use consumer-level packages. And it all began as a secret military project.

There are two technologies developed by DARPA that the world couldn’t function without today. One is the internet, and the other is GPS; if either were to be switched off, everything from global commerce to national defence systems would be compromised to the point of potential collapse.The Global Positioning System project dates back to 1973 and was originally very much a military system, funded and created by the US Department of Defense. However, the concept dates back even further to the very early days of DARPA itself.

GPS – The Global Positioning System:  How would we find the nearest Starbuck’s without GPS? This invention idea has changed the way we get around town, as well as logistics for shipping and delivery, airline transportation and defense.GPS didn’t arise solely out of the DARPA invention labs, but they had a hand in it. The final product is the result of research and development from every branch of the military, Navy, Air Force, and the Army, as well as DARPA and a number of independent invention labs.GPS pinpoints your location, by tracking your position in relation to four satellites. Due to the Dopler Effect, the satellites can determine your position on a line. With the information from four satellites, your exact position can be determined within 3.5 meters. GPS uses systems much like those developed in prior generations, such as LORAN, which could pinpoint location based upon radio waves. But, because it is based upon satellite transmissions, it is more reliable and has wider coverage around the world.

A legendary story is told of the inspiration for GPS. Back in 1957, William Guier and George Weiffenbach were following the Sputnik launch. They were both physicists at Johns Hopkins. They realized that the change in frequency of the radio waves from Sputnik, would allow them to track its location. This critical insight is the core of the GPS system. But it took decades to develop, as clocks and satellite technology had to catch up with the basic idea. In addition, GPS was a terrifically expensive project. The cold war with Russia provided the justification for the expense. But, it also kept the project off limits to the public and top secret. It took Korean Air Lines, Flight 007 disaster to change that. The plane was shot down over Russia, as it had lost its way and found itself in Russian airspace. Because of this disaster President Ronald Reagan decided to make GPS available for civilian and private commercial use. The GPS system is free to everyone and still maintained by the United States Government. Since the U.S. system was launched, several others have been launched regionally by other countries, including; Russia, Japan and India. The European Union plan to launch their own system soon.

Google Maps were Born in DARPA:  And you thought the clever guys at Google created the concept. Well, they certainly added to it, made it consumer friendly, and put a vast chunk of the United States up on Google Maps. But the truth is, the concept of street view and a 3D representation of a city came right out of DARPA.

Back in 1979, students from MIT Architecture Machine Group toured Aspen, filmed it, and displayed their project as the Aspen Movie Map. It even allowed viewers to see the buildings evolve in time, with historical views. And it was fully interactive. Some of the buildings could be entered and explored virtually.

Google took the project pretty much exactly as the students left it, including the gyroscopically stabilized cameras for video recording from the car tops, and created Google Maps.

The inspiration for funding the project as a DARPA invention, allegedly sprang from the Israeli attack of an airliner in Entebbe, Uganda. The Isrealis were able to raid the aircraft and rescue the hostages. Supposedly, they were so effective because they trained in a replica of the airport. Thus, DARPA believed mapping would be vital to military training and successful military operations.

Maps Made Real, the Urban Photonic Sandtable Display:  This is simply amazing technology, that uses 3D mapping tech combined with holographic displays and a special “sand” to create physical terrain maps. That’s right, this DARPA invention creates physical structures with holographic imagery.

The Urban Phototonic Sandtable Display was recently displayed for the media. In its current stage of development, the Sandtable is a mere 6ft square. The story is that the invention can be used to display battlefields for planning purposes. The “sand” reforms and changes it’s shape as the hologram changes.

Now picture this lifesize. It allows for the creation of buildings and cities, with holographic imagery. It gives a whole new meaning to virtual reality. It offers a way of changing physical reality instantly, with a single touch on a computer keyboard. Pretty awesome.

The Cloud:  It should be no surprise that the guys who invented the internet, also developed the operating systems to use it. DARPA invented the Multiplexed Information and Computing Service for the purpose of “information utility,” known as Multics. Multics eventually morphed into Unix, which is the backbone of OS X, iOS, Android and Linux. The goal was to create a modular operating system, so that the various components could work independently,, but in a coordinated manner. Multics allowed for faster distributed computing. Of course, security was of the utmost importantance. The Unix system allowed documents to be given various levels of security clearance while being stored on the same system. Users could only access areas of the system that they were given access to. The system also had to be resilient, robust, and impervious to attack.The “timeshare” aspect of these systems, is critical to the functioning of cloud computing.

Windows and Video Conferencing:  Love or hate Microsoft, everyone has an opinion, one thing is certain, they didn’t actually create Windows. That’s right, Bill Gates crowning achievement, the Windows operating system, is actually a DARPA invention. The beginnings of Windows date back to 1961, when Douglas Engelbart proposed to the US AIR Force Office of Scientific Research that he could “develop a comprehensive framework for augmenting human intellect.” It was called the oN-Line System, or NLS. NLS gave us many features of the computer that we have come to take for granted. NLS developed the first onscreen cursor/mouse system. It is almost unimaginable to use a computer without the ability to select particular portions of the screen for actions. NLS created it. NLS also created hypertext linking, which is absolutely essential to the functioning of the World Wide Web.

So back in 1969, Engelbart held the first video conference and demonstrated his cool new system. Decades later, Microsoft, Apple, and the rest of the Silicon Valley businesses claimed that they had invented these systems. But none of it would have existed without Engelbart and DARPA.

SIRI:  Of course, if Windows is actually a DARPA invention, and not really a Microsoft product, it should be no surprise that Apple’s SIRI is from DARPA as well. Under DARPA the voice recognition software system was known as CALO. It is a “Cognitive Assistant that Learns and Organizes” and was developed for soldiers in the field. The slightly awkward name derives from the Latin word, calonis, which is a soldier’s servant. SIRI was released into the civilian world as the military wound the project down and moved onto a new iteration. Their new voice recognition program is BOLT, the Broad Operational Language Translation program. BOLT is being designed to provide translation, including contextual translation, to help soldiers in the field.

Arbor Networks Piggybacks on DARPA Research: Distributed Denial of Service attacks are a huge security issue for companies on the internet. But, Arbor Networks created a system that protects websites from DDoS attacks. Their system detects and mitigates the effects of DDoS attacks. the technology was developed at the University of Michigan, under a DARPA contract. Back then it was called the Lighthouse Project. It was demonstrated to work for the first time in 2000.

Internet Privacy:  Of course DARPA would be into privacy and anonymity. Government agencies adore doing things in secret, it is almost a fetish. So DARPA created “onion routing,” now known as Tor. Tor is the best-known system for anonymous internet use at this time. But, onion routing dates back to 1995. The US Navy wanted an anonymous and secure communication system. DARPA joined the project two years later with funding and expertise. Onion routing uses layered encryption codes. As the packet reaches each browser en route to the final destination, a layer of encrypted code is “peeled off.” That encrypted code tells the browser where to send the packet next. The de-encryption destroys the prior information about who sent the packet or where it had been.  This creates a very high level of security and anonymity. Tor markets this system for security and privacy on the web. And it is a DARPA invention.

DARPA Inventions Continue to Shape the Future

And of course, DARPA has been involved in the development of advanced technology for everything from planes to bombs. Stealth technology, which makes planes invisible to radar, was a DARPA project. The agency is in the process of developing the fastest plane in the world, with the goal of being able to strike any target in the world within an hour. Their Falcon HTV-2 flies at 14,000 miles per hour, 20 times the speed of sound. It also flew right into the ocean and crashed. And DARPA continues to push the boundaries of computing. They are working on dramatically reducing processing speeds with hardware that is millions of times faster than current technology. The world is shaped by DARPA inventions. DARPA is building the future of our world.

Submit Your Idea Today

National Security and Cyber Experts: Do Not Surrender the Internet!

Washington, D.C.:  Dozens of experienced national security professionals and experts on cyber threats and warfare joined forces today to urge the Secretary of Defense and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to oppose the transfer of the last vestige of U.S. control of the Internet to a non-profit organization in less than a week.

ican-logoAs things stand now, on 1 October, President Obama intends to transfer all responsibilities for naming and numbering domain addresses on the Internet to a non-profit organization known as the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN).  Should that happen, the United States will no longer have any control over the addresses that serve to make all websites accessible and allow users to connect to the Internet.  Currently, the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) reviews all new addresses and authorizes them to be posted to the authoritative root server (the “A Server”) by Verisign.

In a letter to Defense Secretary Ashton Carter and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Joseph Dunford, current and former leaders in industry, national security, homeland and cyber security express strong concerns about the likely implications of such a step and seek a one-year delay to allow full consideration of these issues:

The Internet Assigned Numbers Authority function is critical to our nation’s ability to effectively defend our national assets and civilian population and ensure integrity in our cyberwarfare capabilities….DoD is reliant upon private sector critical infrastructure for its operations, and the integrity and security of the IP addresses associated with these assets are equally important to the protection of the American people.

Of…immediate concern to us…is the prospect that the United States might be transferring to future adversaries a capability that could facilitate, particularly in time of conflict, cyberwarfare against us. In the absence of NTIA’s stewardship, we would be unable to be certain about the legitimacy of all IP addresses or whether they have been, in some form or fashion, manipulated, or compromised.  Given the reliance of the U.S. military and critical infrastructure on the Internet, we must not allow it to be put needlessly at risk.

The signatories, headed by storied leaders of the defense industrial sector and cyberspace, CACI International’s Executive Chairman, J.P. “Jack” London, and the former Chairman of Network Solutions, Michael A. Daniels, represent several centuries’ worth of experience in safeguarding America and its computer systems.

They conclude with the bottom line:

“There is, to our knowledge, no compelling reason for exposing the national security to such a risk by transferring our remaining control of the Internet in this way at this time.”


It’s Now or Never to Save the Internet

John Bolton: Hostile Foreign Governments Will Use Obama’s Internet Surrender to Their Advantage – Breitbart

EDITORS NOTE: To learn more about what is at stake and the necessity of the executive branch and/or the Congress preventing this needless and avoidable disaster, contact Jody Westby, CEO of Global Cyber Risk LLC, at 202-255-2700 or

Florida: 9/11 Commemoration Facebook Page Hacked – Was it the Islamic State?

sarasota-ministerial-associationA malicious attack occurred against the Sarasota Ministerial Association’s Facebook page announcing their “Standing With the Fallen” 9/11 commemoration at the Sarasota National Cemetery. The hacker obtained administrative privileges and posted that the event was cancelled.

Additionally, the hacker sent out notifications to those who had “friended” the association’s Facebook page saying the commemoration was cancelled.

Why is this attack significant?

Because it was in Sarasota that Mohammed Atta, the leader of the attack on 9/11/2001, and two of the other pilots lived, planned the attack and trained to fly their deadly missiles into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.

Is picking this Sarasota commemoration to hack happenstance or something more nefarious?

The following graphic replaced the one the hacker posted announcing the event was cancelled:


In an email to supporters and attendees, Chaplain Tom Pfaff, the event organizer, wrote:


Today [September 10,2016] the Sarasota Ministerial Association Facebook was hacked.

A false posting said that the 9/11 Commemoration was cancelled and sent e-mails out also saying the event was cancelled.

Let’s fight back, by everyone e-mailing saying the 9 / 11 Fifteen Year Commemoration at the Sarasota National Cemetery, 6 PM HAS NOT BEEN CANCELLED but hacked.

And please share the newly, redone event posting with your Friends publicly.

Evil shall not triumph, but will be then used for the good…

This kind of cyber attack using Facebook is unusual in that it targets a specific event commemorating the fifteenth anniversary of 9/11 that has historic significance. President George W. Bush was in Sarasota at Booker Elementary School when he was notified that a plane has struck the World Trade Center. Shortly after the second plane hit and the U.S. Great War on Terrorism began.

 from Heavy in an article titled “Is There an ISIS Terrorist Attack Threat for September 11, 2016?” reports:

15 years after 9/11 was committed by al-Qaeda and Osama bin Laden, the United States is now at war with the Islamic State. Is there a credible terrorist threat for the 15th anniversary of September 11?

According to the White House’s top counterterrorism official, Counterterrorism Center chief Nick Rasmussen, the answer is “yes.” The Washington Post reports that on Wednesday, Rasmussen said that the “terrorist threat facing the U.S. and its European allies is ‘bigger, wider and deeper’ than at any point since the Sept. 11 attacks 15 years ago.”

However, no specifics were given.

Last year, Twitter accounts affiliated with the Islamic State threatened a September 11, 2015 hacking attack against the United States. No cyber attacks took place.

But without a doubt, ISIS is planning to capitalize on American fears of a repeated attack on September 11. [Emphasis added]

Did the Islamic State hack the Sarasota Ministerial Association’s Facebook page in remembrance of Mohammed Atta? Is there something more the hacker(s) might do?

The incident according to sources has been reported to Facebook and local law enforcement. Let’s hope this and the thousands of other commemorations go off without a hitch.

EDITORS NOTE: The 9/11 event will take place as scheduled. We will have staff at the event. Stay tuned for updates.

Is the DNC Convention over even before it gets started?

There are clear fissures within the Democratic Party. The burning question: Is the DNC Convention over before it gets started?

On Friday, July 22nd, Wikileaks did a DNC Document Dump of nearly 20,000 hacked emails.

Bernie Sanders supports analysed these emails and published a detailed list of findings, which may be read here.  The first causalities of this document dump are Bernie Sanders supporters and DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman-Schultz.

Jeff Zeleny, Eric Bradner and John King, in a CNN Politics article titled “Wasserman Schultz resigning as party leader” write:

Debbie Wasserman Schultz announced Sunday she is stepping down as chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee at the end of the party’s convention, which is set to begin here Monday.

The Florida congresswoman’s resignation — under heavy pressure from top Democrats — comes amid the release of thousand of leaked emails showing DNC staffers favoring Hillary Clinton over Bernie Sanders in the party’s 2016 primary contest.

Her announcement that she was leaving had pro-Sanders supporters cheering during a demonstration in Philadelphia and Donald Trump and other Republicans crowing about the disarray among the Democrats.

How will the Democrats and media spin this political Armageddon?

Jeff McAdam in a Fox New 13 article states:

hillary rigged primaryDozens of Salt Lake City residents came together at West High School to protest recent developments within the Democratic Party.

“WikiLeaks? WikiLeaks? That’s exactly what we thought the whole time,” said Wesley Randall, a Bernie Sanders supporter.

Emails from DNC staffers released by Wikileaks appear to show the Democratic National Committee favoring Hillary Clinton over Bernie Sanders during the primary process. Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz announced Sunday she will resign at the end of the party’s convention, which begins Monday.

“It’s not okay to rig the primary, and that’s essentially what they’ve done here,” said Felicia Taylor, one of the two organizers of Sunday’s rally.

The rally started at West High School, where Sanders gave his second speech in Utah, and ended at Liberty Park, some 3.4 miles later.

“We even had one Hillary supporter come up to us and join us saying, ‘I used to be a Hillary supporter up until a couple days ago, but I’m with you now,'” Taylor said. “Then she walked with us the rest of the way.”

Read more.

Donald Trump made the following remarks about Bernie Sanders and the DNC Convention during his acceptance speech:

[I]f you want to hear the corporate spin, the carefully-crafted lies, and the media myths — the Democrats are holding their convention next week. Go there.

[ … ]

Nobody knows the system better than me, which is why I alone can fix it. I have seen firsthand how the system is rigged against our citizens, just like it was rigged against Bernie Sanders. He never had a chance.

How prophetic.

Wikileaks DNC Document Dump: Detailed List of Findings

Wikileaks released nearly 20,000 hacked emails from the accounts of Democratic National Committee officials. Gateway Pundit posted a detailed list of findings from the Wikileaks document dump.

The list was compiled thanks to the work of Reddit Bernie Sander supporters and Donald Trump supporters: Hat Tip Steve A.

Here is their list of findings:

DNC member killing horses for insurance money.
DNC making fun of black woman’s name.
DNC telling each other, “I love you too. no homo.”
DNC requesting a pull an MSNBC commentary segment.
DNC controlling the narrative with time released stories.
DNC conspiring to create false Trump information and release with Reuters.
DNC Hillary supporters infiltrated Sanders campaign.
DNC members going to complain to Morning Joe producers about his mentioning of a “rigged system.”
DNC discussing their relationship with NBC/MSNBC/CNN and how to get better treatment.
Super PAC paying young voters to push back online Sanders supporters. Paid shills.
DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz having an off the record meeting in MSNBC President Phil Griffin’s office.
DNC being messed with by the Washington Examiner.
DNC discussing Hillary’s policies as unfeasible.
$200k for a private dinner with Hillary.
Offering to send interns out to fake a protest against the RNC.
Faking outrage and pasting in a video later.
A mole working inside of the Sanders campaign.
Bringing up Sanders religion to scare the southern voters.
Possible money laundering by moving money back and forth to bypass legal limits.
Politico writer sending his stories to the DNC before he sends them to his editor.
DNC feeding CNN the questions they want to be asked in interviews.
Creating a fake job ad for a Trump business to paint him as a sexist.
Hillary funding 2 million dollars in a coordinated campaign in battleground states to win back the Senate.
DNC is upset that their “allies” didn’t send in protestors so they sent out interns.
“Clinton Foundation quid-pro-quo worries are lingering, will be exploited in general.”
$50,000 – Lawrence Benenson.
Daily Fundraising Report for the DNC.
Content & Social Strategy Discussion.
Re: BuzzFeed and DNC connection.
Draft linking news articles about trump to use as negative press.
Fwd: State Dinner Countdown.
Some chick is angry she hasn’t been given more stuff from the Obama administration…might be interesting to follow up.
Re: State Dinner Countdown.
Tim O’Brien: Trump’s Fixation on Inflating his Net Worth is a Cause for Concern.
RE: May Fundraising Numbers.
Hillary for America Raised $26.4 Million in April, Began May with More than $30 Million Cash on Hand.
Re: For approval: Trump supporter graphics.
Press talking points, states Hillary is their candidate, dated May 5, 2016. More of a smoking gun than the ambiguous talk in the emails themselves.
Consultant calling megyn kelly a bimbo. Has PDF attached that says the same.
DNC trying to get away with violating the Hatch Act.
Democrats using interns to organize fake “protests.”
RE: Action on DNC tomorrow (Immigration Raids).

The Democratic National Convention may be over before it even starts.

VIDEO: Facebook Using a ‘Blacklist’ to Block Freedom of Speech?

According to the Frequently Asked Questions on the Facebook (FB) website, “Founded in 2004, Facebook’s mission is to give people the power to share and make the world more open and connected. People use Facebook to stay connected with friends and family, to discover what’s going on in the world, and to share and express what matters to them.”

Is Facebook living by its mission statement?

Gizmodo posted a YouTube video stating, “Facebook workers routinely suppressed news stories of interest to conservative readers from the social network’s influential ‘trending’ news section, according to a former journalist who worked on the project.” Watch the Gizmodo video expose to learn more:

I recently posted a column titled FACEBOOK: You have been temporarily blocked from performing this action! Since the beginning of the presidential primary season Facebook has repeatedly blocked me from posting on pages that have given me permission to do so. I wrote, “Facebook and/or some individuals are using this administrative tool to block conservative citizen journalists, like myself, from posting links to articles they disagree with.” It appears my fears are true.

Gizmodo’s Michael Nunez reports:

Facebook workers routinely suppressed news stories of interest to conservative readers from the social network’s influential “trending” news section, according to a former journalist who worked on the project.

[ … ]

In other words, Facebook’s news section operates like a traditional newsroom, reflecting the biases of its workers and the institutional imperatives of the corporation. Imposing human editorial values onto the lists of topics an algorithm spits out is by no means a bad thing—but it is in stark contrast to the company’s claims that the trending module simply lists “topics that have recently become popular on Facebook.”

[ … ]

“Depending on who was on shift, things would be blacklisted or trending,” said the former curator.

Facebook is using all of its tools to stop those who post news stories that it disagrees with. From using the temporary blocking tool to actually blacklisting certain news stories of a conservative nature.

Perhaps the Facebook founders, senior leaders and workers need to read their own mission statement. To discover what’s going on in the world, and to share and express what matters to us requires an open platform. One based upon the ideal of freedom of expression.

Time to return the power “to share and make the world more open” to the people, who are Facebook.

The War on Emojis by Gary McGath

Emoji are little picture symbols seen in text messages or social-media posts. Cute as they are, they’re often a center of controversy, and the Indonesian government has banned some of them, threatening to block access to websites that don’t cooperate.

Emoji is a Japanese word meaning “picture characters.” The word isn’t related to “emoticon,” a punctuation sequence used for expressing feelings, even though they sound similar.

There are emoji for all kinds of situations, and the Unicode standard for international text encoding has adopted many of them. Unicode includes modifier codes that allow the creation of composite emoji, so there’s a lot of room for creativity. Services can define their own emoji as well.

Inevitably, people have devised emoji representing same-sex relationships. Some of these, such as “two men holding hands” (👬), are part of the Unicode standard. Others, such as “man kissing man” (👨‍❤️‍💋‍👨), are composites.

This has drawn the ire of Indonesia’s Ministry of Communication and Informatics. It pressured Line, a major Japanese social network, to block these emoji, and it is now “asking” Facebook to do the same. If it doesn’t comply, the Negative Content Management Panel may block all access to Facebook in Indonesia. Because emoji use specific character codes, software can selectively block forbidden ones.

Indonesia has couched its censorship demands in terms of the “right” not to be offended. A government spokesperson has said that “such contents are not allowed in Indonesia based on our cultural law and the religious norms and the operators must respect that.”

Line has responded in kind, saying it “regrets the incidents of some stickers which are considered sensitive by many people … We ask for your understanding because at the moment we are working on this issue to remove the stickers.” (In this context, “stickers” means emoji.)

The Russian government recently considered legal action against Apple for including gay-oriented emoji in its iOS devices, but ironically decided against it because the symbols can be used with negative connotations as well as positive ones. Russian law prohibits “propaganda” for nontraditional sexual relationships where minors can see it — essentially, everywhere. The Russian investigation also covered emoji depicting cigarettes and alcoholic drinks, though it didn’t suggest banning the words for these things.

While things aren’t nearly this bad in the United States, authorities here sometimes crack down on emoji. The Washington Post reports that the Fairfax, Virginia police brought charges of harassment and threatening a school against a 12-year-old girl who made an Instagram post with gun (🔫), knife (🔪), and bomb (💣) emoji. Time mentions a case in which a teenager was charged with a terrorist threat for a Facebook post with gun emoji pointing at a police officer emoji (👮).

It’s become routine for governments to censor the Internet by blocking, or threatening to block, websites that don’t comply with their demands. The European Union has decreed a “right to be forgotten,” under which search engines can be forbidden to return links to factually correct information that an EU resident doesn’t want seen. Recently, Google agreed to block all results linking to forbidden information when accessed from an EU country.

Banning Unicode emoji seems petty in comparison, but it’s consistent with the idea that people should be shielded from seeing anything they find offensive. People who try to censor “offensive” content imagine that they’ll always be the arbiters of what’s offensive, but their own ideas will undoubtedly offend other people, and which expressions are banned depends only on who holds the power.

Gary McGathGary McGath

Gary McGath is a freelance software engineer living in Nashua, New Hampshire.

Islamic State ‘Caliphate Cyber Army’ Posts ‘Hit List’ of Minnesota Cops

The Islamic State’s Caliphate Cyber Army posted a “kill list” of names, addresses and other personal details of 36 policemen in Minnesota.

The FBI confirmed the list included full names, phone numbers, home and email addresses. The agency is investigating how the information came to be posted online.

The website Vocativ, which conducts investigations on the “Deep Web,” says individual cards with the information on them were shared through the mobile phone app Telegram, an encrypted messaging service (similar to Whats App).

“It is troubling to have that type of information online for the public to see,” FBI spokesperson Kyle Loven said.

Officer safety is the agency’s first concern, Loven added.

“We’re not going to look into whether or not this is a legitimate threat or an illegitimate threat,” he continued. “We’re going to take it and move forward with respect to what it is that we have to do in addressing this matter.”

Minnesota police officers confirmed their site had been hacked and the officers listed were those employers who had requested a quote for auto insurance,CBS local news in Minnesota reported.

The FBI advised officers on the list to maintain a heightened state of awareness “in case there would be someone who, unfortunately, would be inspired by this type of information being available,” Loven said.

The fact that Islamic extremists in Minnesota have successfully recruited and trained terrorists in the past is being taken into consideration by the FBI.

Most of the officers on the list live in or around the Twin Cities (Minneapolis and St. Paul). The area’s Cedar Riverside neighborhood is home to the largest Somali community in the U.S. Since 2007, 24 men from Cedar Riverside have left the community to join extremist groups.

According to a congressional report released last November, one in four Americans who have attempted to joined the Islamic State are from Minnesota.

The Caliphate Cyber Army (CCA) has previously hacked into sensitive material on a number of occasions:

  • Last week, the CCA published a file containing information on 55 New Jersey police officers. The file was downloaded 300 times in 24 hours.
  • Also last week, the CCA posted a threat to financial institutions, saying they would target “banks, money transfer services, stocks and so on.” The threat, made on the group’s Telegram channel, continued, “Beware of us, economical war has just started.”
  • In November, a group called the Islamic State Cyber Army posted names and addresses of a number of people who have worked for American security agencies (although some of the details were already public).
  • In October, a UK citizen connected with the Islamic State published the home address of Robert O’Neill, the Navy Seal who killed Osama Bin Laden.
  • In January, 2015, ISIS hackers were able to command the YouTube and Twitter accounts of the U.S. Army’s Central Command.


Social Media Emerges as a Valuable Terrorist Fundraising Tool by Abha Shankar

Guidelines for a National Cyber Strategy

Kerry: Not Enough Information to Call ISIS Attacks Genocide

VIDEO: ISIS Orphans – A Next-Gen Recruiting Ground?

ISIS Releases Video of Burning Christian Books

Women in Raqqa Make Secret Film: Life Under ISIS

Islamic State Hackers Publish Names, Addresses of New Jersey Police

A file containing the information on 55 officers was uploaded to an Arabic-language, file-sharing site. It was downloaded 300 times in under 24 hrs.

The Islamic State’s ‘Caliphate Cyber Army’ (CCA) released the names, addresses and cell phone numbers of 55 New Jersey police officers, after hacking into a uniform laundry list.

The officers’ ranks, employee numbers and working locations were disclosed, as well as some home addresses.

A file containing the information on the officers, who all work for the transit police, was uploaded to an Arabic-language, file-sharing site, which showed that in less than 24 hours, the file had been downloaded 300 times.

Announcing the upload on the secure messaging service Telegram, the CCA described the file as “Personal information of the US police stations including Leaders and officers.”

In response, the New Jersey Transit System issued a statement which read, “The NJ Transit Information System was not compromised, however some information was breached from an outside vendor. The New Jersey Transit police are working the Department of Homeland Security and the FBI on this matter.”

The Caliphate Cyber Army is comprised of hackers sympathetic to the Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL) and has mainly been successful in taking down small, unsecure websites and substituting its own propaganda.

However, last November, the “army” hacked into 54,000 Twitter accounts, posting the accounts’ passwords online. The group also posted the cell phone numbers of the CIA, the FBI and the National Security Agency.

The army was able to briefly control a Pentagon Twitter account in January.


Meatpackers and Somali workers (again) disrupt small town life in America

Police Officer Stabbed by 15-Year Old Girl In Islamic State Inspired Palestine-Style Kitchen Knife Attack

Disturbing ISIS Video: We Will Attack America ‘Very Soon’

UK Police Chief : Islamic State Planning ‘Spectacular’ Attack

Meet an ISIS Defector

Hear from Two Kids, 10 & 8, Who Escaped the Clutches of ISIS

Here’s Where Things Stand One Year Into Net Neutrality


One year after the FCC tossed out a successful regulatory policy that left a light touch on the Internet, allowing it to transform how we communicate, shop, and run our businesses, let’s see what has happened and where we’re headed.

Here are 4 things we know:

  1. Investment in Internet infrastructure is basically flat.
  2. There is a paper trail of how the FCC was bulldozed to take the Title II route by the White House.
  3. Congress is working on legislation.
  4. The fate of the regulation rests with the Judicial Branch.

Flat Internet Investment

In a 2015 paper, Robert Shapiro of the Georgetown Center for Business and Public Policy and Kevin Hassett of the American Enterprise Institute predicted that heavy-handed Net Neutrality will reduce communications infrastructure investment.

That prediction seems to be panning out.

Hal Singer, a senior fellow at the Progressive Policy Institute, found that capital expenditures (capex) for the top Internet Service Providers (ISP) decreased slightly in 2015:

It’s important to put this finding in context: According to USTelecom, which uses a larger sample of ISPs, broadband capex increased by 8.7 percent in 2013 (from $69 billion to $75 billion), and by 4.0 percent in 2014 (from $75 billion to $78 billion). Those were sizable gains. (Across the twelve ISPs in my sample, the increase in capex was slightly above four percent in 2014.)

Singer looks at this data and concludes:

This is not to suggest that Title II solely caused capital accumulation to stagnate. Several factors could be at play. But when investment theory is corroborated by evidence, as it is here, it is reasonable to infer that reclassification of ISPs as Title II common carriers was not a good thing for investment.

Speaking at the Heritage Foundation, FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai said, “The Obama administration has now overseen the first-ever reduction in year-over-year investment by major ISPs that happened outside a recession, one which ‘just happens to coincide with the Title II era.’”

The White House Bullied the “Independent” FCC

In order to impose Net Neutrality, the FCC reclassified Internet providers by regulating them as common carriers and treating the Internet like a 20th Century phone network.

How the FCC went down this route is interesting. The FCC is supposed to be an independent federal agency, but a report from the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee finds it caved into President Barack Obama’s wish to impose Net Neutrality.

Documents and interviews with FCC staff piece together a timeline of an agency doing an about-faceafter being pressured by the White House, The Hill reports:

Culling together emails from late 2014, the Senate committee — led by Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) — concluded that the FCC was heading in one direction to draft a hybrid plan, which would use strong authority to regulate the back end of the Internet but not for the consumer-facing side.

But after private meetings with White House staff and a public statement from the president urging strong rules under Title II, the FCC paused its work and then shifted direction. The report concluded the shift caught many career agency officials off guard and ultimately led the commission to push back a December 2014 vote it was planning.

Timeline of how the White House forced the FCC to implement Net Neutrality.. Source: Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee.

The report confirms what The Wall Street Journal reported in February 2015, that the White House “thwarted” FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler’s alternative broadband regulation plan:

In November, the White House’s top economic adviser dropped by the Federal Communications Commission with a heads-up for the agency’s chairman, Tom Wheeler. President Barack Obama was ready to unveil his vision for regulating high-speed Internet traffic.

The specifics came four days later in an announcement that blindsided officials at the FCC. Mr. Obama said the Internet should be overseen as a public utility, with the “strongest possible rules” forcing broadband providers such as AT&T Inc. and Verizon Communications Inc. to treat all Internet traffic equally.

The president’s words swept aside more than a decade of light-touch regulation of the Internet and months of work by Mr. Wheeler toward a compromise. On Wednesday, Mr. Wheeler lined up behind Mr. Obama, announcing proposed rules to ensure that the Internet “remains open, now and in the future, for all Americans,” according to an op-ed by Mr. Wheeler in Wired.

In addition, the report finds that some FCC professional career staff worried the regulatory process that resulted in Net Neutrality didn’t abide by the proper public notice-and-comment process required under the Administrative Procedures Act.

Congress Gets in on the Act

Congress, which never passed Net Neutrality legislation, isn’t sitting still.

Two piecemeal approaches working their way through the House of Representatives are one that would exempt small business ISPs from Net Neutrality transparency rules. Another, the No Rate Regulation of Broadband Internet Access Act (H.R. 2666), would prevent  the FCC from regulating the rates of ISPs.

In the Senate, Commerce Chairman John Thune (R-S.D.) plans to work on a more comprehensive billhe hopes can win bipartisan support.

Fate Lies in Federal Courts

Federal courts will have their say on Net Neutrality’s fate. An appeals court heard arguments in December 2015, and we await a decision. The U.S. Chamber submitted an amicus brief asking the court to overturn the FCC’s Net Neutrality decision. Depending on the outcome, the Supreme Court could end up hearing the case.

EXCLUSIVE PODCAST: Cyber Warfare — A Clear and Present Danger

I had the honor and pleasure of appearing on The Denise Simon Experience. The radio show is hosted by Denise Simon, who is the Senior Research and Intelligence Analyst for Foreign and Domestic Policy for numerous flag officers and intelligence organizations.

I spoke about the clear and present dangers of enemies, both foreign and domestic, using technology to commit crimes, steal national secrets and impact our way of life. Denise calls cyber attacks “the poor man’s nuclear weapon.” I talk about the current threat (attacks from nation states, cyber hackers and groups like Anonymous) to the looming future threat of cyborgs, chipping and Internables.

Internables are internal sensors that measure well-being in our bodies may become the new wearables. According to Ericsson’s ConsumerLab eight out of 10 consumers would like to use technology to enhance sensory perceptions and cognitive abilities such as vision, memory and hearing.

My greatest concern is that the United States government is only conducting defensive operations against the threat, and not doing that very well. The Obama administration does not conduct effective offensive operations against our enemies which include: China, Russia, Iran, the Islamic State, North Korea and many others.

I am on the first hour:

HOUR 1 – Dr. Rich Swier, LTC. U.S. Army (Ret.) successful publisher and national security expert spoke about artificial intelligence, hacking, cyber warfare and the future threat of chipping and Internables.

HOUR 2 – Jack Martin, with, explains the condition of American employees being replaced with foreign nationals and how the process has grown and is hurting employment. This is a don’t miss segment.


Smartphones to die out ‘within five years’, says new study – According to a new study mobile technology is expected to be replaced by artificial intelligence

The US Military Wants a Chip to Translate Your Brain Activity Into Binary Code

Techno-skeptics’ objection growing louder

Is technology causing us to evolve into a new SPECIES?

No, It’s Not Your 1st Amendment Right to “Talk Dirty” to a Child online

EDITORS NOTE: The Denise Simon Experience is broadcast live worldwide on Fridays from 12:05 AM – 2:00 AM (Eastern) on Or you may visit The Denise Simon Experience to listen to her extensive interview archives.

ONLINE POLL: To Hack or Not to Hack? Apple and the San Bernadino iPhone

We offer both sides of the argument regarding the phone of a San Bernardino terrorist and invite you to vote on the issue in a Clarion Project Poll.

By Meira Svirsky and Elliot Friedland

Apple is fighting against a federal court that ordered the company to provide software for the FBI to unlock California terrorist Syed Rizwan Farook’s iPhone.

Farook, along with his wife Tashfeen Malik, killed 14 people in December 2015 in San Bernadino in a shooting rampage. Both were eventually killed in a shootout with police.

The FBI wants access to Farook’s phone to try to recreate the time immediately after the attack until they were cornered and killed to see if they had accomplices and, thus, to prevent any future attacks.

The court ordered Apple to provide software to bypass Farook’s work-issued phone that is encrypted with software to erase the phone’s data after 10 unsuccessful attempts to enter the phone’s password.

Below, Clarion Project offers the reader two compelling arguments: the case in favor of the court’s rulings and the case in favor of Apple’s objection. Go to our Facebook page and let us know how you feel by participating in our poll.

The Case Against Apple’s Objection (VOTE NOW)

The government’s request of Apple is above all for the purpose of saving lives in the future, a value that stands above others, including the right to privacy.

Commenting on the court’s decision, New York Police Department Commissioner Bill Bratton rightly said, “The right to privacy is not a total right in the sense that if it is being used for criminal purposes, that’s where the courts come into play.”

All the more so when it comes to terrorism and its devastating effect on society and the individual lives it destroys in its wake.

Although the court specifically ordered Apple to create special software to unlock Farook’s iPhone, it also ordered that software to be designed with a “unique identifier” so it could not be used to unlock other iPhones.

Nevertheless, Apple claims the court order sets a dangerous precedent, creating a “backdoor” into the device that is used across the world to store data ranging from bank accounts to embarrassingly-private photos.

In our technological age, we can reasonably assume someone will eventually create the technology to unlock iPhones. The question can be asked as to why the government, when lives are at stake, should be denied access to the same technology that may end up in the hands of terrorists to foist on us their bloody agenda?

America is country that operates on checks and balances, from the constitution to the courts and between the executive, legislative and judicial branches of government. The reason the government was designed in such a way was to prevent the “slippery slope” that leads to abuse of power.

It is reasonable to assume in this case that similar orders in the future would not be issued in an environment lacking due process that would prevent large-scale abuse. It is also reasonable to assume that just as Apple has continually updated and improved its products, it will continue to stay ahead of the game vis-à-vis the security systems on those same devices.

Similar court orders in the future might then require product-specific software, thus decreasing the possibility of wide-scale abuse by the government.

Having Big Brother looking over our shoulder is never an ideal way to live. But if we occasionally have to put up with the intrusion, it’s worth it to stay alive.

The Case in Favor of Apple’s Objection (VOTE NOW)

The court ruling that Apple must create a backdoor route to hack into iPhones is a body blow to the right to privacy in America, unless Apple is successful in overturning it.

“In the wrong hands, this software — which does not exist today — would have the potential to unlock any iPhone  in someone’s physical possession,” Apple CEO Tim Cook told Apple customers. “The government suggests this tool could only be used once, on one phone. But that’s simply not true. Once created, the technique could be used over and over again, on any number of devices.”

Government powers are rarely only used for the thing for which they were first acquired. This new technique will not merely be used in this one instance to open the iPhone of a dead terrorist, but empower the government to hack iPhones at will.

Although that power is targeted at terrorists today, there is no telling what uses future governments will make of the technology. Cases in point: Barack Obama’s White House has been accused of using the IRS to persecute conservative groups; disgraced former president Richard Nixon bugged the Watergate Hotel in order to spy on his political enemies. Future presidents could quite easily use these technologies to monitor and persecute whichever group they choose for whatever reason.

Furthermore, there is no reason to assume this technology would remain in the hands of America. What would prevent authoritarian states like Saudi Arabia and Iran from gaining access to this technology, using their own court orders to force Apple to hand it over or banning all Apple products from their countries? Is the government certain this technology will remain under lock and key and not fall into the hands of non-state actors who could then access the iPhones of government officials?

Finally, there is a more idealistic reason to oppose this ruling. The fight against Islamist extremism is a fight to protect the values of freedom and democracy. If, in fighting that battle, we give our own governments the tools to monitor and spy on us will have lost.

Even if we are victorious, we will have simply exchanged one set of tyrants for another.


Meira Svirsky is the editor of

Elliot Friedland is a research fellow at Clarion Project.


Delivery Man Charged With Planning to Attack US, UK Airmen

More Reps Cosponsor Bill to Designate MB as Terrorist Org.

ISIS Clip Declares: “America Has Lost The Battle”

World Hijab Day Debuts in American Schools

EDITORS NOTE: The featured image is of the Islamic State San Bernardino Muslim terrorists Tashfeen Malik (left) and Syed Rizwan Farook

The Cyber Attack on the Ukrainian Electrical Infrastructure: Another Warning

By Gabi Siboni and Zvi Magen –

Gabi SiboniZvi Magen

On December 23, 2015, malfunctions were reported in portions of the electrical network in western Ukraine, after the operations of 27 distribution stations and three power plants were disrupted, causing the electricity supply system to crash. This was not a routine power outage: the Ukrainian authorities believe that a cyber attack originating in Russia caused the malfunction, and the Security Service of Ukraine has blamed Russia for the power outages. The conclusions of several security companies confirm the suspicion linking the attack to Sandworm, which according to the security company iSight is a Russian group affiliated with the Russian government. Hypotheses regarding a possible motive also support the suspicion that Russia is the party responsible for the attack, perhaps as part of the Russian campaign against cutting off the Crimean Peninsula, annexed by Russia, from electricity supplied by Ukraine. Cyberspace operations also enable Russia to continue denying its involvement in Ukraine, while at the same time persisting in efforts to attack it.

For some time, security experts have warned that critical services – for example, electricity and water supplies – can be attacked through cyberspace. The assumption is that such action requires sophisticated capabilities in cyber intelligence, technology, and operations, and possession of such capabilities is usually attributed to countries that have invested heavily in their development. Until now, even if in possession of such capabilities, most countries have shown restraint in using cyber tools to materially disrupt essential services and critical infrastructure in enemy countries. Events in Ukraine, however, question whether this assumption of restraint is still valid. On December 23, 2015, malfunctions were reported in portions of the electrical network in western Ukraine, after the operations of 27 distribution stations and three power plants were disrupted, causing the electricity supply system to crash. Many homes were cut off from the network. This was not a routine power outage: the Ukrainian authorities believe that a cyber attack originating in Russia caused the malfunction, and the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) has blamed Russia specifically for the power outages.

Ukrainian Nationalists and a cheering crowd after the toppling of the statue of Communist leader Grigory Petrovsky, Dnipropetrovsk, January 29, 2016. Photo: Stanislas Vedmid / AFP

It is difficult to prove with certainty who was behind the attack, but presumably the relevant authorities in Ukraine, with the help of Western agencies, will ultimately uncover the attacker’s identify. The Ministry of Energy in Kiev has appointed a committee to investigate the affair. Thus far assessments concerning the party responsible for the attack are based on forensic examinations carried out on the damaged computers, which indicates that components in them were previously used by Russian groups. Furthermore, not surprisingly the technological capabilities point to a Russian element.

The conclusions of several security companies confirm the suspicion linking the attack to Sandworm, which according to the security company iSight is a Russian group affiliated with the Russian government. iSight has monitored Sandworm for over a year, and discovered that the group has collected information from the computers of Ukrainian administration officials, and from agencies in the European Union and NATO. Other security experts reported that the group was also focusing on attacking industrial control systems. According to the security company ESET, located in Bratislava, the attackers used backdoor software that makes it possible to conduct operations on the target computers through a remote control server. In the Ukrainian case, use was made of a BlackEnergy component – a Trojan horse used as early as 2014 – to spy on Ukrainian administration computers and plant a malware program called KillDisk on power station computers in western Ukraine.

Hypotheses regarding a possible motive also support the suspicion that Russia is the party responsible for the attack, perhaps as part of the Russian campaign against cutting off the Crimean Peninsula, annexed by Russia, from electricity supplied by Ukraine. In addition, there is a great deal of information about the presence of advanced cyber warfare capabilities possessed by Russia and affiliated organizations, with Russia taking the lead in developing a combat doctrine that encompasses both kinetic and cybernetic activity. In the case of Ukraine, cyberspace operations enable Russia to continue denying its involvement in its neighbor, while at the same time persisting in efforts to attack it.

Effective wielding of the cyber weapon against sensitive targets in another country, in this case Ukraine, is likely to have far reaching consequences, not only for the future course of the particular conflict, but also for conflicts between other countries, or between countries and non-state organizations able to procure both offensive and defensive cyber capabilities. To be sure, similar cases of cyber attacks were recorded in the past. One of the best known examples of attack against infrastructure facilities that caused actual physical damage was the attack on Iranian nuclear installations with the Stuxnet software – alleged by some to have been carried out by Israel and the United States. Attacks in the Baltic states designed to prevent service were attributed to Russia. Nevertheless, the cyber attack in western Ukraine clearly reflects the use of this weapon against critical civilian infrastructure on a larger scale. This event, a precedent tantamount to crossing the Rubicon, is liable to serve as a model for imitation by other countries and perhaps organizations as well, while eroding the barriers of restraint that previously existed. In other words, it appears that the Ukraine incident is a sign that an especially important threshold has been crossed. Espionage, the theft of commercial information, financial crime, and denial of services are tolerable; although bothersome, they do not materially and directly harm the substance of daily life. An attack against the electrical infrastructure, however, can damage critical infrastructure and jeopardize human life. It therefore constitutes a quantum leap in the will to cause damage, in this case by a state.

Like other countries threatened in cyberspace, Ukraine will have to consider how to improve its defensive capabilities against similar events in the future. Israel can provide an example here. Over the past decade, Israel has been able to develop advanced defensive capabilities for its critical infrastructure. Its defensive envelope includes gathering and analyzing intelligence and distributing it to the relevant agencies, as well as monitoring by the Israel Security Agency. This has created an environment of ongoing improvement and enhancement in defensive capabilities. Still, the proliferation of cyber capabilities, which has accelerated in recent years, enables new-old players – terrorist organizations and criminal elements – to acquire capabilities previously considered the exclusive province of nations. Concern is therefore growing that these non-state actors, which lack restraint mechanisms and state-like considerations, will attempt to imitate the model demonstrated in the attack on the electricity infrastructure in Ukraine.

Disruption of the supply of electricity is no trivial matter. It is enough to recall the events in Israel in late 2015 resulting from natural causes, and not a cyber attack: harsh winter weather caused serious disruptions over widespread areas lasting for many days. Israel is especially vulnerable in this aspect, due to the concentrated topology of its electricity grid. It is therefore necessary to continue monitoring related developments in Israel’s strategic environment and throughout the world to assess whether there is a growing trend of cyber attacks able – despite sophisticated defensive measures – to inflict serious damage, and to prepare accordingly.

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared on The Institute for National Security Studies website.

National Security Agency: Spying on American Jews, Israel and the U.S. Congress

Shoshana Bryen is Senior Director at the Washington, D.C. based Jewish Policy Center.  She has been a frequent guest on The Lisa Benson Show regarding US-Israel relations, the Obama Administration and national security.  On the first program of the New Year, January 3, 2016, she appeared  to address allegations raised by a Wall Street Journal article about NSA spying on Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu and by happenstance, Members of Congress and American Jewish leaders, “US Spy Net  on Israel Snares Congress. “  She also responded to an NER Iconoclast post on whether the Israel Defense Force was prepared to meet the threat of ISIS affiliates on both the Syrian frontier and the Egyptian Sinai. She also spoke of an emerging relationship with Putin’s Russia allowing Israeli freedom to attack Hezbollah targets in Syria.

Listen to the segment with Bryen on the Benson show Podcast of January 3, 2016 starting at the 20 minute mark:

As is our practice in producing the weekly Benson Show, we send our guests a set of suggested questions requesting they select a limited number to respond in what a fast is paced packed 44 minutes.  Bryen prepared written responses to the original of set of questions. Below are her astute and illuminating responses.

What is real story behind the Wall Street Journal report alleging NSA spying on Israeli PM Netanyahu, Congressional members and American Jewish Leaders?

Bryen:  The administration was spying on Congress; maybe still is.  The White House tried to put a layer of protection between itself and illegal NSA activity by saying “do what you want.” If there was a problem or a lawsuit over this, the White House position wouldn’t hold up. NSA was spying on Israel and vice versa – nothing new.

The real targets were Congress and American Jews. I don’t see that Congress knew about this specific spying. Surely no one up there is naive and they know they are listened to. This is important for the next points. That makes the idea that they would get on the phone with Israeli Ambassador to US Ron Dermer and allow him to bribe them over the wire totally ridiculous. Whatever NSA got, they did not get it from tapping Dermer’s phone. They probably also did not get it from tapping Congressional phones because Congress assumes it is tapped and no one was discussing bribery.  What could you bribe a Congressman with to get his/her vote on this?

There was no collusion between Ron Dermer and the American Jewish community. I was part of the machinations opposing the nuclear deal with Iran, although the Jewish Policy Center does not lobby; we are only in the information business. “The Jews” knew their talking points and didn’t need Dermer for anything. If they talked to him, that is one thing.  However, needing him for “talking points,” again, that is ridiculous. If there are intercepts of American Jews talking to Congressional members it would have to come from bugging Congress. Lee Smith, of The Weekly Standard makes the point that if there was bribery or attempted bribery involved, there would already be criminal cases. There are none, of course. So, where does that leave us?

NSA spying is only supposed to be done for issues of National Security. One can make the argument that if the US government thought Israel was going to bomb Iran, it would rise to that level. However by 2013, the US was positive Israel was not going to do that. What comes after is political.

Are the enemies of the White House are Congress and the Jews? Congress because Obama knew it opposed the deal. That is why the talks needed to be secret. Also, the talks leading to the talks needed to be secret. They were worried that Israel would spill the beans. Israel didn’t.

There were several incidents in which the Administration let people know what the problems were.  Lee Smith points in his article to a Jon Stewart interview with the President. There is also The New York Times (NYT) editorial that accused Jews of being more loyal to a foreign government than to the US. Senators Schumer and Menendez were damned as “beholden to donors” – code word for Jews.

Obama told Stewart: “If people are engaged, eventually the political system responds. Despite the money, despite the lobbyists, it still responds.” Stewart said, “What do you mean by lobbyists?” The President didn’t answer, but after the signing of the JCPOA, he said Congress would evaluate this agreement fairly, “not based on lobbying, but based on what is in the national interests of the United States of America.”

The NYT reported on a Democratic Issues Conference in Baltimore where the President said he understood the pressures that senators face from “donors and others.” However, according to the NYT, Obama urged the lawmakers to “take the long view rather than make a move for short-term political gain,” meaning money and Jewish support. Menendez was offended.

Smith actually thinks there was no specific bugging going on, but just an attempt to intimidate Congress and the Jews. I disagree.  They think they are above the law on these things. And they may be, but it doesn’t appear to matter.

Why are media accusations unfounded that American Jewish leaders and U.S. Congressional friends of Israel take their cues from the Israeli Embassy?

Bryen:   Because those accusations presume American Jews NEED someone to tell them how they are supposed to feel about a political issue. On its face that is ant-Semitic. American Jews are a sophisticated community of Americans – although I have some disagreements with where they come out on some issues – they don’t need anyone, particularly a foreign government, to tell them what to think or what to do about issues.

Have these disclosures impacted on US- Israel intelligence cooperation and weapons deliveries to maintain Israel’s Qualitative Military Edge?

Bryen:  No, there is no present impact that I can discern. First, all intelligence agencies assume that they are being spied on by both friends and enemies. It’s nothing new. Second, the relationship works both ways – the American intelligence services rely on Israel for information in the region.

What options does Congress have to bar lifting sequestered funds of Iran now that the Administration announced delays in new sanctions in view of Iran’s violation of ballistic missile testing under UN Resolutions?

They’re talking about new sanctions laws in Congress after the holiday recess. Note that Sen. Chris Coons (D-DE) is the loudest voice on this. He voted FOR the JCPOA and he’s figured out that the deal was a disaster and Secretary Kerry’s “snapback sanctions” were a joke.

Congress can pass any law it wants – sanctions included. Iran’s public interpretation of the deal is that any new sanctions would violate the JCPOA and leave Iran free to withdraw from it – or actually, continue to violate it. The White House appears to be siding with Iran including on the secure visa procedure, which is absolutely an obligation of Congress. Iran remains on the State Sponsor of Terror list because of its support for Hezbollah and Hamas. If the White House does not want more sanctions, it will threaten a veto.  Then you will have the extraordinary spectacle of a U.S. government shielding the world’s top sponsor of terror from the United States Congress.

How prepared is the IDF to contend with threats from ISIS in both Syria and the Sinai?

Bryen:  Israel is in a continual state of readiness.  For years they have had to closely identify and track the threats. They are helped by the determination of Egypt in Sinai – with which the US government should be thrilled. It is the actual implementation of the Camp David Accords. The problem for the US in the Sinai is that we have the Multilateral Force and Observers there – MFO – primarily manned by Americans. It is a holdover from Camp David designed to ensure that the Egyptians don’t move military equipment into Sinai in quantities larger than Camp David permitted. Now it is a target for ISIS and affiliated Bedouin groups.

Israel is helped on the northern front by the fact that at the moment neither the Assad government nor Hezbollah wants to open another front and Russia would not permit it. The Israel-Russia relationship is fascinating.  It is mutually beneficial right now and has the seeds of longer-lasting cooperation.

As for ISIS, while in theory killing Jews would be fine, it doesn’t need a second front either. There is a growing threat of ISIS-inspired organizations on the Syrian border, where multiple local factions have pledged allegiance to ISIS leadership. The more immediate risk, however, is most likely related to ISIS’ possible impact on Israeli Arab youth, both within Israel and in Judea and Samaria.

Given the latest killings of Israelis in Tel Aviv by an Israel Arab, what can the Netanyahu government do to prevent such deadly attacks?

Bryen: We don’t’ have all the information, including whether or not it was actually terrorism. It didn’t have the usual “fingerprints.”  The perpetrator was an Israeli Arab citizen who had served five years for a previous attack on an IDF solider. He used a firearm deliberately hitting two people, not spraying the restaurant for maximum casualties. The attack was in the heart of Tel Aviv and he fled the scene.  Israeli Police hedged on whether it was simply a criminal act. If it was a terrorist, it appears to be of the “lone wolf” variety, which means Israel has the same problem the U.S. does.

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared in the New English Review.