Saturday, March 28, 2015

The biggest challenge remains at the F.B.I., a traditional law enforcement organization that has struggled since the 2001 terrorist attacks to remake itself as an intelligence agency that can prevent attacks and not just investigate crimes. A report on the F.B.I.’s progress, released on Wednesday, concluded that despite great strides, the bureau needs to step up the role of analysts and the respect and resources they get.

C.I.A. Officers and F.B.I. Agents, Meet Your New Partner: The Analyst

C.I.A. Officers and F.B.I. Agents, Meet Your New Partner: The Analyst

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Call it the revenge of the nerds, Washington-style. The gun-toting F.B.I. agent and the swashbucklingC.I.A. undercover officer are being increasingly called upon to share their clout, their budgets and even their Hollywood glamour with the humble, deskbound intelligence analyst.
As the two agencies confront an evolving terrorist threat, cyberattacks and other challenges, both are reorganizing in ways intended to empower analysts. That involves the delicate job of meshing the very different cultures of the streetwise agent and the brainy analyst, who reads secret dispatches, pores over intercepted communications, absorbs news media accounts and digests it all.
The biggest challenge remains at the F.B.I., a traditional law enforcement organization that has struggled since the 2001 terrorist attacks to remake itself as an intelligence agency that can prevent attacks and not just investigate crimes. A report on the F.B.I.’s progress, released on Wednesday, concluded that despite great strides, the bureau needs to step up the role of analysts and the respect and resources they get.
While bureau officials have long extolled the importance of intelligence analysts, the report, by the F.B.I. 9/11 Review Commission, found that the bureau “still does not sufficiently recognize them as a professionalized work force with distinct requirements for investment in training and education.” The F.B.I. director, James B. Comey, acknowledged the problem and said that empowering analysts was one of his main goals.
At the C.I.A., where analysts have had a central role since its founding, they long worked largely apart from the “operators,” who work in the field overseas recruiting agents. This month, John O. Brennan, the C.I.A. director, announced that analysts and operators would be combined in 10 new “mission centers,” following the model of the agency’s Counterterrorism Center. That may give the analysts greater day-to-day influence on operations.
The latest moves continue the steady enhancement of the role of intelligence analysts. Even popular culture has caught on, with analysts becoming the stars of recent movies and television shows. In “Zero Dark Thirty,” the 2012 movie account of the hunt for Osama bin Laden, the central character is a C.I.A. analyst called Maya, played by Jessica Chastain. Addressing the beefy, heavily armed members of the Navy SEALs who are about to fly into Pakistan, the petite Maya is no wallflower.
“Bin Laden is there,” she confidently tells the SEALs. “And you’re going to kill him for me.”
The failure to prevent the Sept. 11 attacks and the subsequent focus on terrorist threats have helped drive the new stature of analysts. The National Counterterrorism Center — not to be confused with the C.I.A.’s Counterterrorism Center — was created after Sept. 11 as an analytical hub to make sure that every scrap of threat information was combined with other data to detect plots.
Another factor is the explosion of data in an era of smartphones and the Internet, as the National Security Agency documents leaked by Edward J. Snowden have underscored. While the N.S.A. has always been a data-driven operation, other agencies now need their own skilled people to make sense of the flood of information, or it will overwhelm them. “These days when you have an intelligence lapse, it’s usually because the crucial information is lost in an avalanche of data,” said John E. McLaughlin, a former deputy director and acting director of the C.I.A.
He said that while analysts had always been valued at the agency, they were long segregated in the Directorate of Intelligence, separate from the Directorate of Operations, which did the spying. For many years, a turnstile and a security checkpoint at the C.I.A.’s headquarters in Langley, Va., separated the analysts from the operations officers, he said.
A career analyst himself, Mr. McLaughlin said that some operations veterans “may feel angst” about the reorganization that will group them with analysts, but that it made sense. “The role of the analyst who puts all the pieces together has become more critical, because there are just more pieces,” he said.
After Sept. 11, the C.I.A. lent the F.B.I. some 40 analysts to try to jump-start the bureau’s reorientation, Mr. McLaughlin said. Before 2001, according to the national 9/11 commission, 66 percent of F.B.I. analysts were “not qualified to perform analytical duties.” Secretaries were sometimes rewarded with a promotion to analyst, with duties that included emptying the trash.
Proud special agents did not always see the value of analysts who did not necessarily build criminal cases — the traditional measure of success at the F.B.I. “At the end of my career, there was low-level tension between the agents and the analysts,” said Jack Cloonan, an F.B.I. agent from 1976 to 2002. “Who was running the case?”
Mr. Cloonan said the analysts did not always share the “camaraderie and esprit de corps” that agents had with one another. “Street agents are street agents,” he said, adding that he still heard grumbling from former bureau colleagues about some analysts who earn more than they do.
Philip Mudd, a career C.I.A. analyst who moved to a top counterterrorism job at the F.B.I. in 2005, said the difference in cultures was striking, and predictable. He recalled the case of David C. Headley, an American affiliated with Lashkar-e-Taiba, a Pakistani extremist group, who admitted to scouting targets for the 2008 terrorist attacks in Mumbai, India. Mr. Headley was arrested, prosecuted and sentenced to 35 years. The more difficult and novel task that the F.B.I. faced, and one for which analysts were critical, was determining whether Lashkar-e-Taiba had other operatives in the United States.
“It’s exploring the world of the unknown,” Mr. Mudd said.
By empowering analysts, “You’re telling agents, ‘You’re going to have to give up some turf,’ ” he said. “Someone’s going to say, ‘O.K., how many child molesters do you want me not to prosecute so you can do your analysis?’ ”
Mr. Comey, the F.B.I. director, has used the analogy of an arranged marriage to describe the relationship between agents and analysts, who have often been quickly paired together, with little say in the matter. Sometimes arranged marriages end up with the couple living happily ever after. Other times, they end up sleeping in different beds.
Mr. Comey is trying to get agents and analysts to “date” at the F.B.I. Academy, where they are now required to train and practice working together. Mr. Comey has said his hope is for a career intelligence analyst to rise to the F.B.I.’s most senior ranks before he retires.
Some people who study intelligence and counterterrorism are concerned that the pendulum could swing too far. Intelligence analysts, said Amy Zegart, a Stanford scholar who studies intelligence, could become too consumed by daily operations and neglect strategic thinking about threats that could be years away.
At the C.I.A., she said, counterterrorism analysts are already “too tactical,” focused on the next drone target. If the same model is applied to the rest of the agency’s work, other analysts, too, could be caught up in short-term demands, she said. “Who in the U.S. government,” she asked, “is going to be thinking about longer-term threats?”
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Poland Charges Russian Air Traffic Controllers in Crash

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WARSAW — Polish military prosecutors charged two Russian air traffic controllers on Friday in a 2010 plane crash in western Russia that killed President Lech Kaczynski and 95 top-ranking officials traveling with him. The charges are likely to strain already tense relations between Poland and Russia.
After an almost five-year investigation, a prosecutor, Col. Ireneusz Szelag, said at a news briefing that the flight controllers from the Smolensk airport, where the presidential aircraft tried to land in poor weather conditions, were being charged with contributing to the crash.
“One of the controllers has been charged with direct responsibility for the crash and one with indirect responsibility,” Colonel Szelag said, adding that he could not reveal further details.
The Russian traffic controllers could face up to eight years in prison.
However, Colonel Szelag said that the most immediate cause of the crash had been the Polish crew’s poor training and negligent behavior, which resulted in the plane’s descending too far below a layer of fog and failing to heed an automated warning to pull up. The crew also did not have the required permission to fly the presidential aircraft.
Relatives of the crash victims intend to ask Russia for compensation of about 250,000 Polish zloty, or about $67,000 each, said Roman Giertych, who represents some of the families.
The revelations by the military prosecutors were immediately seized upon by the conservative Law and Justice party, the biggest opposition party in Poland, founded by Mr. Kaczynski and his twin brother, Jaroslaw, a former prime minister who has long claimed that the president was assassinated, possibly by the Russians.
Jaroslaw Kaczynski also believes that the Polish government led by Donald Tusk, who has since resigned to become president of the European Council, was involved in a cover-up.
Antoni Macierewicz, a senior member of Law and Justice, accused the investigators of “leading the public astray” and said the crash had been caused by a mysterious explosion on board that ripped the aircraft apart.
Russia still has not returned the aircraft wreckage, despite repeated requests by Polish officials.

Russia Has Constructed Massive Underground Shelters In Anticipation Of Nuclear War 

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Did you know that the Russians have a massive underground complex in the Ural mountains that has been estimated to be approximately 400 square miles in size?

Russia Builds Miles of Nuke Bunkers While US Does Nothing

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Alex Jones uncovers one of the biggest and most dangerous issues in recent history, a Rosetta Stone that will decode the deception taking place throughout our world.
As Russians build gigantic underground bunkers, spanning 400 square miles, the elite are planning their escape from America by purchasing airstrips, farms and underground shelters in record numbers.
As preparations for nuclear war intensify, the public is being told it’s not a danger anymore. Get this emergency broadcast out to everyone you know before the time for action runs out.
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Putin to FSB: We must make Russia stronger

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A “Termit” anti-ship cruise missile launched from the missile boat “R-123″ during tactical exercises of the Russian Baltic Fleet with missile firings in the Baltic Sea.
President Putin has told senior officers of Russia’s domestic security service that despite the constantly increasing foreign pressure, the situation in the country will improve, once it stops giving in to its foes and starts becoming more powerful.
“No one has ever succeeded in intimidating or pressuring our country and no one ever will, we have always had and always will have an adequate answer for all internal and external threats to national security,” Vladimir Putin said in an address to the FSB collegium on Thursday.
“The situation cannot always remain as it is, it is going to change and I hope it will change for the better, including the situation around our country,” the Russian leader said. “But the changes for the better will not happen if we constantly yield, give in or use baby talk, it will only improve if we become stronger,” he emphasized.
“NATO is developing its rapid response forces and is boosting its infrastructure near our borders, we are registering attempts to violate nuclear parity and the creation of the European and Asia-Pacific segments of the missile defense systems is being sped up,” Putin said.
Apart from the military standoff with NATO, Russia had to oppose the attempts to undermine its political system, the Russian leader noted. “They are using a whole range of means for the so-called containment of Russia, from attempts at political isolation and economic pressure to a full-scale information war and tools used by special services.”
The Russian president demanded that the FSB apply maximum effort to prevent the destabilization of the country.
“Western special services do not give up their attempts to use non-government groups and politicized unions to discredit Russian authorities and destabilize the internal situation in Russia. They are already planning actions for the period of the forthcoming elections in 2016 and 2018,” Putin said. In 2016 Russia will hold the federal parliamentary election, and the next presidential poll is scheduled for 2018.
The president stated that the authorities intended to maintain their dialogue with the opposition and Russian civil society in general, as well-founded criticism and partnership have proved to be useful for any nation, including Russia.
“But it makes no sense to argue with those who work on orders from outside, who serve the interests of not their nation but an alien nation or nations,” he said.
Putin pledged to continue the recently introduced practice of disclosing the foreign funding of political groups and NGOs, to check if the declared objectives of such groups match their real activities and to cut short any attempts at violations.
The president’s statements are in line with the conclusions of Russia’s top consultative body on national security, the Security Council, that said Wednesday that the 2015 US National Security Strategy was openly anti-Russian and could have multiple negative consequences on relations between Moscow and Washington. The document, published in early February, was based on the principles of American Exceptionalism and the alleged right of unilateral enforcement of US interests in various parts of the world, the Russian security experts claimed in their conclusion.
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Russia To Join New Chinese Development Bank

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Russia has become the latest country to announce it will join the China-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), to be based in Beijing.

Germanwings co-pilot killer 'bought two Audis - one for him and one for his girlfriend weeks ago'

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Andreas Lubitz, pictured, received one of the two cars which he bought for himself and his girlfriend just three days before he crashed Germanwings flight 4U9525 into the Alps on Tuesday morning.

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Keep it in the ground: a poem by Carol Ann Duffy

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The poet laureate’s Parliament poem on pollution and climate change accompanied the launch of the Guardian’s Keep it in the ground campaign
Then in the writers’ wood,
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The Germanwings tragedy: inside the mind of a pilot

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As a qualified pilot and psychiatrist, I am certain that no prior psychological test to Andreas Lubitz would have predicted his actions
French prosecutors have reported that first officer Andreas Lubitz appeared to want to destroy the aircraft carrying 149 innocent people aboard Germanwings flight 4U9525. As a qualified pilot and a psychiatrist, I have since repeatedly imagined nightmare scenarios in that cockpit. Although we will never know what was truly going through Lubitz’s mind as the aircraft plunged, one of the many alarming aspects of this tragedy is thathis depression is being quickly blamed.
Obviously depression cannot be the sole cause of a likely mass murder. Understanding this could yield many important lessons, and for now, the black box flight recorder will continue to yield vital information.
Was Lubitz able to remain calm by psychologically blocking out the reality of what was happening?
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Meredith Kercher murder: Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito acquitted 

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Italy’s highest court clears pair definitively, ending case that began in November 2007, when body of Leeds University student was discovered in Perugia
The trial of Amanda Knox and her former boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito for the killing of British student Meredith Kercher has ended in a stunning acquittal after Italy’s highest court decided to annul their murder convictions.
The decision by a five-judge panel on Friday night to clear the pair definitively ends a case that began when the body of Kercher, a 21-year-old Leeds University student from Coulsdon, Surrey, was found in the bedroom of the flat she shared with Knox in Perugia on the morning of 2 November 2007. Her throat had been slashed and she had been sexually assaulted. She had been in the first weeks of an Erasmus year in the Umbrian hilltop town. 
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World War 3: Russian Jets Lead NATO Fighters On First Supersonic Chase Of ... - The Inquisitr

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The Inquisitr

World War 3: Russian Jets Lead NATO Fighters On First Supersonic Chase Of ...
The Inquisitr
World War 3 may not have arrived just yet, but Russian jets raised the frightening stakes in their ongoing duel with NATO fighters in the skies over the Baltic region on Tuesday, blasting past the speed of sound and leading NATO Typhoon jets on the ...

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UPDATE 1-US Republican lawmaker says Clinton wiped clean email server - Reuters

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Washington Times

UPDATE 1-US Republican lawmaker says Clinton wiped clean email server
(Adds comments from committee's chairman and from its top Democrat). WASHINGTON, March 27 (Reuters) - The Republican chairman of a U.S. House of Representatives committee investigating the 2012 Benghazi attacks said on Friday that former ...
Trey Gowdy: Hillary Clinton wiped her server cleanPolitico
Benghazi chairman: Clinton wiped private email server 'clean'The Hill

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Celebrating John F. Burns, War Reporter and Witness to Era-Defining Events 

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The two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning correspondent has written his last dispatch for The New York Times — for now.
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Benghazi Committee: Clinton Wiped Server After Emails Deleted - BuzzFeed News

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BuzzFeed News

Benghazi Committee: Clinton Wiped Server After Emails Deleted
BuzzFeed News
“We learned today, from her attorney, Secretary Clinton unilaterally decided to wipe her server clean and permanently delete all emails from her personal server,” says Rep. Trey Gowdy. posted on March 27, 2015, at 3:55 p.m.. Katherine Miller. BuzzFeed ...

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Poland Charges Russian Air Traffic Controllers in Crash

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The 2010 plane crash in western Russia killed President Lech Kaczynski and 95 top-ranking officials traveling with him.

The Saturday Profile: Once Imprisoned in a Foreign Land, an American Fights for the Wrongly Accused 

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Eric Volz turned a wrongful conviction in Nicaragua into a vocation, helping other Americans imprisoned overseas.

michel garroté - Google Search

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    1 day ago - Michel Garroté -- Andreas Lubitz, 28 ans, copilote de l'A320 de Germanwings qui s'est écrasé mardi 24 mars 2015, faisant 150 victimes, ...
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    The Strange official version of the A320 crash Andreas Lubitz

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    Michael Withers     German investigators raided two homes copilot A320 Germanwings Andreas Lubitz Düsseldorf, where he had an apartment; and Montabaur, Rhineland-Palatinate, where he lived part of the time. They notamme nt won the CPU his computer and two large blue bags and boxes. Andreas Lubitz went through a heavy depressive episode in 2009 and has received psychiatric treatment. Since he was under treatment m edical particular and regular.
    It was during this period in 2009 that he would have started attending Islamic-jihadist circles. So writes, German, Michael Mannheimer on German PI-News. His analysis was repeated in English on s <a href="" rel="nofollow"></a> and various other English websites (see links to sources below) .
    Here we must admit that the official version of the crash of  the A3 20 Germanwings, crash deliberately provoked by Andreas Lubitz , this official version given by the French authorities, is quite strange. According to this version, Andreas Lubitz would have a calm and steady breathing until the moment of impact. Medical experts there will always be to endorse this view. But the fact remains that it seems unlikely.
    For eight long minutes, until the time of the crash, and despite the screams of 149 passengers, Andreas Lubitz would have kept quiet and regular breathing, without saying a word. Another strange element Andreas Lubitz have managed to hide the medical services of Lufthansa, Germanwings owner, he was taking medication prescribed by a psychiatrist. One wonders what other surprises in store for us this matter in the days and weeks ahead. One thing is certain: the officials are doing everything to avert a possible jihadist track.
    Reproduction authorized with mention:
    Michael Withers
    "The blog of Michael Withers has been removed"; or "moved": this is the message that some of my readers see appear on their screen when trying to access my blog. The reason for this incident is simple: countless sites and blogs are the subject of cyber attacks. But no, my blog has been deleted. If it happens again, you have several options: "refresh" the home page of my blog on your screen; come back later on my blog; introduce the word "blog Michael Withers" in the Google search or other search engine; or read my articles on and . It is clear that the leftists, Islamists (and some false friends) will continue their cyber attacks against blogs like mine (in fact I'm very flattered ...).
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    Germanwings Co-Pilot Was Muslim Convert

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    The liberal media doesn’t want to touch this, but this certainly makes sense and is the mantra of the converts.
    Check it out:
    Police have reportedly found an “item of significance” at the apartment of the co-pilot who crashed the Germanwing passenger plane into the Alps this week.
    The item was NOT a suicide note.
    28-year-old German Andreas Lubitz trained in the Phoenix, Arizona and is pictured here in San Francisco.
    A German news website claims Andreas Lubitz was a Muslim convert. reported:
    According to Michael Mannheimer, a writer for German PI-News, Germany now has its own 9/11, thanks to the convert to Islam, Andreas Lubitz.
    Translation from German:
    All evidence indicates that the copilot of Airbus machine in his six-months break during his training as a pilot in Germanwings, converted to Islam and subsequently either by the order of “radical”, ie. devout Muslims , or received the order from the book of terror, the Quran, on his own accord decided to carry out this mass murder. As a radical mosque in Bremen is in the center of the investigation, in which the convert was staying often, it can be assumed that he – as Mohammed Atta, in the attack against New York – received his instructions directly from the immediate vicinity of the mosque.

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