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DAILY INTEL DUMP


  • ATF REALLY FOULED THIS OP UP
    Yesterday, 02:56 PM
    Smugglers from Arizona being monitored through the U.S. government's Operation Fast and Furious helped supply firearms to a gun-trafficking ring led by officials in Columbus, N.M., according to court documents. Court documents also provide additional details on the extent of the Columbus conspirators' involvement with Mexican drug traffickers and La Linea enforcers of the Carrillo Fuentes drug cartel.According to one of the court documents, Border Patrol agents looking for a stolen vehicle stopped Blas Gutierrez, a former Columbus Village trustee, and Miguel Carrillo, a gun straw purchaser, in Columbus on Jan. 14, 2010. The two m...


  • CRIMEA: GAS AND HEARTACHE FROM THE RUSSIANS
    Yesterday, 12:32 PM
    Russia’s annexation of the Crimea region of Ukraine is the most significant geopolitical event to occur in Europe in a generation. Not since the Kosovo crisis in the late 1990s has the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) deployed its forces in response to aggression, although this time around NATO is potentially facing a larger and far more technologically-advanced foe than Serbia. NATO’s recent deployment of troops and materiel to Poland appears to be more a show of the organization’s strength and commitment to its members in the region rather than the beginnings of a conflict. That Russia has been willing not only to pr...


  • USAF DEPLOYS JASSM VIA THE BONE
    Yesterday, 12:24 PM
    The US Air Force (USAF) has received into operational service the Lockheed Martin AGM-158B Joint Air-To-Surface Standoff Missile - Extended Range (JASSM-ER), the USAF announced on 8 April.The first JASSM-ER production lot was recently delivered to Dyess Air Force Base, Texas by the Armament Directorate, marking the end of nearly nine years of testing for the autonomous, long-range missile.JASSM-ER has more than two and a half times the range of the standard AGM-158A JASSM on which it is based, meaning it can be launched from outside of defended airspace and the coverage of long-range surface-to-air missiles, and is intended for u...


  • TOW MISSILES FIND WAY TO SYRIAN BATTLEFIELD
    Yesterday, 12:21 PM
    Syrian insurgents have released the first videos showing them using US-made M220-series TOW heavy anti-tank weapon systems, indicating that a state sponsor is supplying them with a new type of guided missile. The three videos were uploaded to YouTube between 1 and 5 April by members of the moderate insurgent group Harakat Hazm. Two of these show TOWs being fired at targets near the town of Hish in the Idlib Governate; the third is of the missile system in the back of a pick-up truck. Weighing nearly 80 kg without a thermal sight, the M220 series is comparatively heavy, which limits its tactical utility as an insurgent weapon, b...


  • NEW CHICOM TYPE 041 SUBMARINE
    Yesterday, 12:17 PM
    New Chinese-sourced imagery shows that the People's Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) continues to modify its Type 041 Yuan class conventional submarine and that it is making progress towards a new large destroyer or cruiser.On 10 and 11 December 2013 the first images of a new variant of the Type 041 - also sometimes referred to as the Type 039A, Type 039C or Type 039X - appeared on Chinese military web forums. It had just been launched by the Wuhan Shipyard of the China State Shipbuilding Corporation (CSSC), the major manufacturer of China's non-nuclear powered submarines. Only seen partially in these first images, a new image seen on...


  • US MILITARY PLACED ON HIGH ALERT
    Yesterday, 10:45 AM
    Ukraine troops traded gunfire Tuesday with pro-Russian militants. A journalist with Associated Press reported intense gunfire at an airport in eastern Ukraine after the government sent in army troops to retake control from militiamen loyal to Russian President Vladimir Putin. The mayor of Kramatorsk told the Associated Press that Ukrainian troops have now occupied the military airport and are blocking its entrance.The action comes a day after the revelation a Russian fighter jetted buzzed a U.S.S. destroyer multiple times over the Black Sea.Russia declared Ukraine on the brink of civil war, and Kiev said an “anti-terrorist opera...


  • RUSSIANS BUZZ USN IN BLACK SEA
    Apr 14 2014 09:53 AM
    A U.S. military official says a Russian fighter jet made multiple, close-range passes near an American warship in the Black Sea for more than 90 minutes Saturday amid escalating tensions in the region. The official says the fighter flew within 1,000 yards of the USS Donald Cook, a Navy destroyer, at about 500 feet above sea level, saying this prompted ship commanders to issue several radio warnings. The fighter appeared to be unarmed and the passes ended without incident.The USS Donald Cook was operating in international waters east of Romania.It was deployed to the Black Sea April 10th, in the wake of the Russian military takeov...


  • USN MANEUVERS ANGER MOSCOW
    Apr 12 2014 12:30 PM
    File this story under the rubric: "Be careful what you wish for." When the U.S. guided missile destroyer USS Donald Cook (DDG-75) departed Norfolk Naval Base to take up station at the Spanish naval base in Rota two months ago, it set off alarm bells in Moscow. Accusing the U.S. of attempting to set up a "strategic offensive potential" in Europe, Russian President Putin loudly condemned the move. U.S. officials calmly explained that the Cook, and its sister ships USS Ross (DDG-71), USS Carney (DDG-64), and USS Porter (DDG-78), were headed to Spain to set up a missile shield against the Iranian missile threat -- and posed no threat...


  • CHINA MIGHT GO AFTER ISLANDS
    Apr 11 2014 08:02 AM
    In Tokyo on April 6, U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagelmade a not-so-subtle reference to China's aggressive behavior in the disputed Senkaku Islands, warning that countries cannot "redefine boundaries and violate territorial integrity and sovereignty of nations by force, coercion or intimidation," whether that be "small islands in the Pacific or large nations in Europe." Two days later, Hagel's Chinese counterpart, Defense Minister Chang Wanquan fired back: China, he said, has "indisputable sovereignty over the Diaoyu" -- as the Chinese call the islands -- while noting that the "Chinese military can assemble as soon as summoned,...


  • DRONES IN SPACE
    Apr 07 2014 10:16 PM
    The Air Force’s secret space plane has been up in orbit for nearly 500 days—a space endurance record. But nearly a year and a half into the mission, the Pentagon still won’t say what the X-37B is doing up there, or when it might come back. The U.S. Air Force boosted the robotic X-37B atop the nose of an Atlas-5 rocket in December 2012. Since then it’s orbited the Earth thousands of times, overflying such interesting places as North Korea and Iran. Similar to the Space Shuttle in appearance, the diminutive X-37B is about a quarter the size of the old shuttles. But there are major differences. Lacking a crew, the spacecraft has no...


  • JAPAN RATCHETS UP RESPONSE TO NoK MISSILE "TESTS"
    Apr 05 2014 08:02 AM
    Japan will strike any North Korean ballistic missile that threatens to hit Japan in the coming weeks after Pyongyang recently fired medium-range missiles, a government source said on Saturday. Defense Minister Itsunori Onodera issued the order, which took effect on Thursday and runs through April 25, the day that marks the founding of North Korea's army, the source told Reuters on condition of anonymity.Following the order, meant "to prepare for any additional missile launches," a destroyer was dispatched to the Sea of Japan and will fire if North Korea launches a missile that Tokyo deems in danger of striking or falling on Japan...


  • NEW RUSSIAN FORCE AND TACTICS
    Apr 03 2014 02:28 PM
    The last time the Russian military machine was on public display in Europe, its performance did not impress. But this is no longer the force that NATO observed blundering its way through a brief but messy war with its tiny neighbor, Georgia, back in 2008. A new, leaner and meaner Russian Army has been on display in Crimea and war-gaming on the Ukrainian border over the past month or so. Its vanguard is now made up of just a few elite divisions of highly-motivated, well trained, and fully equipped volunteer soldiers, capable of deploying swiftly anywhere in the formerSoviet Union on the Kremlin's command.And that fact is raising...


  • UKRAINE AGREES TO HOST NATO
    Apr 02 2014 01:09 PM
    Ukraine's parliament on Tuesday approved a series of joint military exercises with NATO countries that would put US troops in direct proximity to Russian forces in the annexed Crimea peninsula. "This is a good opportunity to develop our armed forces," acting defence minister Mykhailo Koval told Verkhovna Rada lawmakers ahead of the 235-0 vote. The decision came as NATO foreign ministers gathered in Brussels for a two-day meeting dominated by concern over the recent buildup of Russian forces near Crimea that US officials estimate had at one point reached about 40,000 troops.NATO has sought to reinforce its eastern frontier after...


  • RUSSIA LOFTS ONE NEAR UKRAINE
    Apr 01 2014 05:38 PM
    Russia said it had successfully test-fired an Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) on Tuesday, with tensions high over its seizure of control in the Crimea and its threat to send more forces to its neighbor Ukraine. A Pentagon official told CBS News that the U.S. detected the launch of the Russian ICBM near the border of Russia and Kazakhstan. Notifications were made ahead of time in accordance with normal procedures. The official said the launch is viewed as non-threatening and is not connected to what is going on in Crimea.It is unclear exactly what kind of ICBM was launched and how long ago the U.S. was notified about th...


  • RUSSIANS MASSING TROOPS ON BORDER WITH EASTERN UKRAINE
    Mar 27 2014 11:15 AM
    Moscow is sending additional troops to “reinforce” its border region with Ukraine, and U.S. security officials fear it may enter the country’s east to establish a land bridge to Crimea. A new classified intelligence assessment indicates Russian forces are more likely that previously imagined to invade eastern Ukraine.Two U.S. security officials, who asked to remain anonymous, told CNN that the current buildup is reminiscent of the Kremlin’s military maneuvering before going into Georgia and Chechnya, in terms of the numbers of units involved and their capabilities.“This has shifted our thinking that the likelihood of a further Ru...


  • HACKING WAR: CRIMEAN STYLE
    Mar 25 2014 05:38 PM
    Hackers have been busy causing service interruptions, breaching databases, and defacing hundreds of Ukrainian and Russian websites, as the crisis between the two countries plays out in cyberwarfare. The attacks have similarities to the resistance movement that sprung up among German-occupied countries during World War II, which took many forms including sabotage, espionage, armed confrontation and counter-propaganda.In addition to that list, today we can add digital or web-based actions including Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks, which shut down key websites, the defacement of government websites, and breaching govern...


  • RUSSIAN ECONOMY SUFFERING
    Mar 24 2014 08:10 PM
    Russia's economy is barely growing, inflation is rising fast, and capital is pouring out of the country, the Economy Ministry said on Monday, a sign that international tensions around Ukraine are already inflicting severe economic costs. In February Russia's gross domestic product eked out growth of just 0.3 percent year-on-year, down from 0.7 percent in January, Russia's Deputy Economy Minister Andrei Klepach said.Last year the economy grew by just 1.3 percent, far below initial forecasts, but there had been hopes that growth would rebound this year. Instead Russia's economic performance is deteriorating further as the internati...


  • NATO CONCERNED WITH RUSSIAN FORCE BUILDUP
    Mar 24 2014 09:08 AM
    Ukraine's acting Foreign Minister Andriy Deshchytsya said this morning that the likelihood of war between his country and Russia is growing as Russian troops continued to seize Ukrainian military bases in the annexed Crimea region. Mr. Deschchytsya told ABC that "we don't know what (Russian President Vladimir) Putin has in his mind... that's why this situation is becoming even more explosive than it used to be a week ago."NATO commander Gen. Philip Breedlove told a conference in Brussels that the Russian force along the Ukrainian border "is very, very sizable and very, very ready" and that "Russia is acting much more like an adv...


  • LIBYA THREATENS NORTH KOREA?
    Mar 09 2014 09:24 AM
    Libya threatened on Saturday to bomb a North Korean-flagged tanker if it tried to ship oil from a rebel-controlled port, in a major escalation of a standoff over the country's petroleum wealth. The rebels, who have seized three major Libyan ports since August to press their demands for more autonomy, warned Tripoli against staging an attack to halt the oil sale after the tanker docked at Es Sider terminal, one of the country's biggest. The vessel started loading crude late at night, oil officials said.The oil dispute is just one facet of the deepening turmoil in the North African OPEC member, where the government is struggling to...


  • BLOOD ON THE CRIMEA HORIZON
    Mar 03 2014 11:07 AM
    Russia has issued an ultimatum to Ukrainian forces in the Crimea to clear out by 5 a.m. Tuesday or face a "military storm," according to Russian state-run news agency Interfax, which cited a Ukrainian Defense Ministry source. Aleksandr Vitko, Russia's Black Sea fleet commander, said that "ff they won't surrender by 5 a.m. tomorrow (10 p.m. ET Monday) there will be a military storm on all UA (Ukraine Armed) military forces all over Crimea," Interfax reported, citing a source in Ukraine's Defense Ministry.A Ukrainian Defense Ministry spokesman, Vladislav Seleznyov, told CNN that members of the Russian military are going to Ukraini...