7th of March: Status in Crimean conflict

Morale falling on all sides.

Euromaidan PR

 Dmitry Tymchuk, military and political observer

The bad news:

1. Putin gave directions to his military and gangsters to expel the Ukrainian military forces from Crimea before the 16th of March (the date of “referendum”). Although the Russian soldiers in Crimea are trying their best to put on a convincing show of discipline, their morale is waning. And it is not surprising; officially, they do not exist on the peninsula. Putin denied their presence and it is not clear how they are different from Aksenov’s criminal bands in the eyes of the law. Because of this, it is necessary to utilize them immediately; otherwise, they may become a disorganized mob very soon.

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Journalists in Sevastopol beaten by Russians assaulting Ukrainian military unit

So much for press freedoms…

Euromaidan PR

Journalists in Sevastopol were severely beaten during the attack on the Ukrainian military unit #2355 on March 7.

Lilya Budjurova wrote on FB:

Ukrainian journalists that were near the military unit #2355 (tactical unit “Krym”) were assaulted by “Aksenov’s combatants”. The journalists were severely beaten, the car in which Yelena Mekhanik was in was chased. They smashed the car and took away the cameras.

Ukrainska Pravda reports that apart from Yelena Mekhanik, journalist Andriy Tapliyenko and two more cameramen from “Inter” were in the car.

Dmitriy Belotserkovets, coordinator of the youth organisation in the UDAR party, wrote on FB:

I will start writing emotionally… but I have never seen such Fascism-Nazism-Genocide in my life. I was present during the raid of [Ukrainian] military unit #2355…Russian troops smashed the gates of the unit, and between 40 and 50 soldiers of Russian army made it inside.

They blocked the unit commander, and…

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Here’s why Bitcoin matters

The coin is more important than the man who created them…


NEW YORK (CNNMoney) — The world is finally paying close attention to Bitcoin, but people are more focused on its creator than the power behind the revolutionary digital currency.

They shouldn’t be. Whether or not Dorian Satoshi Nakamoto, a 64-year-old retired engineer living quietly in California, is the father of Bitcoin is not really the point.

Bitcoin matters because it has governments and major banks scared stiff. It presents a currency that cuts them out of the picture.

China restricted banks from using Bitcoin late last year. In February, Russia’s top prosecutor declared that Bitcoin and all anonymous payment systems are illegal.

For now, the United States is letting the experiment move forward. But New York state’s top financial regulator has already detailed plans to regulate bitcoins sometime this year.

Banks see the writing on the wall too. In a quiet move last year, JPMorgan Chase filed a patent for…

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The Robert Patrick Hoffman Case: Spies, Soviets, and Subs

Robert Patrick Hoffman II, courtesy of the Daily Mail
Robert Patrick Hoffman II, courtesy of the Daily Mail

Daily Mail Reporter. “Decorated Former Navy Submarine Expert Sentenced to 30 Years in Prison for Trying to Sell Classified National Defense Secrets to FBI Agents Posing as Russian Spies.” The Daily Mail. February 12, 2014. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2557383/Decorated-former-Navy-submarine-expert-sentenced-30-years-prison-trying-sell-classified-national-defense-secrets-FBI-agents-posing-Russian-spies.html

Daugherty, Scott. “FBI Targeted Alleged Spy by Pretending to Date Him.” Virginian-Pilot. August 17, 2013. http://hamptonroads.com/2013/08/fbi-targeted-alleged-spy-pretending-date-him#

——. “Would-Be Spy Gets 30 Years from Norfolk Federal Court.” Virginian-Pilot. February 11, 2014. http://hamptonroads.com/2014/02/wouldbe-spy-gets-30-years-federal-court

FBI. “Former Sailor Sentenced to 30 Years in Prison for Attempted Espionage.” February 10, 2014. http://www.fbi.gov/norfolk/press-releases/2014/former-sailor-sentenced-to-30-years-in-prison-for-attempted-espionage

——. “Naval Espionage: Stopping a Dangerous Insider Threat.” March 7, 2014. http://www.fbi.gov/news/stories/2014/march/naval-espionage-stopping-a-dangerous-insider-threat/naval-espionage-stopping-a-dangerous-insider-threat?utm_campaign=email-Immediate&utm_medium=email&utm_source=fbi-top-stories&utm_content=304333

Mather, Mike and Doris Taylor. “Former Sailor Found Guilty of Trying to Spy for Russia.” News Channel 3. August 21, 2013. http://wtkr.com/2013/08/21/former-sailor-found-guilty-of-trying-to-spy-for-russia/

RiaNovosti. “US Navy Submariner Convicted of Attempting to Spy for Russia.” August 22, 2013. http://en.ria.ru/military_news/20130822/182915811.html

Semko, Ray. “Former Navy Sailor Charged in Virginia with Attempted Espionage.” DICE Blog. December 6, 2012. http://www.raysemko.com/2012/12/06/former-navy-sailor-charged-in-virginia-with-attempted-espionage/

——. “Robert Hoffman Espionage Trial (Updated).” August 20, 2013. http://www.raysemko.com/2013/08/20/robert-hoffman-espionage-trial/

Solash, Robert. “In Colorful Case, U.S. Submarine Expert Accused of Attempting to Spy for Russia.” Radio Free Europe. March 8, 2014. http://www.rferl.org/content/hoffman-trial-belarus-submarine-expert-spying-russia/25081887.html

Robert Patrick Hoffman during his trial, courtesy of the DICE Blog
Robert Patrick Hoffman during his trial, courtesy of the DICE Blog
Loaded Dead Drop with the encrypted flash drive, courtesy of the FBI
Loaded Dead Drop with the encrypted flash drive, courtesy of the FBI

Former sailor found guilty of trying to spy for Russia

Counterintelligence at its finest…


[ooyala code=”l4MDd4ZDq_WweX2V4L9il1FXIIDdpKUx” player_id=”55ce3a06495346ddb20768902d1e991c”]Norfolk, Va. – On Wednesday, retired submariner Robert P. Hoffman was found guilty of trying to spy for Russia.

Federal agents arrested Robert Patrick Hoffman II, identified as a former cryptologic technician with a Top Secret clearance, and charged him with attempted espionage, according to a secret indictment.

Hoffman served 20 years in the Navy and retired in 2011 officials say.

Officials say while Hoffman was in the Navy, he had security clearances that allowed him access to classified and national defense documents.

They say he signed agreements in 2012 that he would not disclose that information and court documents say he passed classified information to what he thought was the Russian Federation, but it was the FBI conducting an undercover operation.

Hoffman faces a maximum penalty of life in prison. He’ll be sentenced on December 2nd.

Stay with NewsChannel 3 for more developments.


Neighbor of man…

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