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FTR #1080 Surveillance Valley, Part 6: Double Agents, Part 2 (Foxes Guarding the Online Privacy Henhouse, Part 3)

In this program, we resume discussion and analysis of the consummately important recent book Surveillance Valley: The Secret Military History of the Internet by Yasha Levine. In the previous program, we noted, among other points of analysis, the decisive role of Eddie “The Friendly Spook” Snowden in promoting the intelligence-agency crafted Tor network.

In addition to Tor, the Open Technology Fund (read “CIA”) helped finance the Signal app for mobile phones. It, too, is fundamentally compromised. ” . . . . . . . . The Tor project remained the best-known privacy app funded by the Open Technology Fund, but it was quickly joined by another: Signal, an encrypted mobile phone messaging app for the iPhone and Android. . . .”

Not surprisingly, the CIA’s Eddie “The Friendly Spook” Snowden was a big promoter of Signal, as well as Tor: ” . . . . People at the ACLU claimed that Signal made federal agents weep. The Electronic Frontier Foundation added Signal alongside Tor to its Surveillance Self-Defense guide. Fight for the Future, a Silicon Valley-funded privacy activist organization, described Signal and Tor as ‘NSA-proof’ and urged people to use them. Edward Snowden was the combo’s biggest and most famous booster and repeatedly took to Twitter to tell his three million followers that he used Signal and Tor every day, and that they should do the same to protect themselves from government surveillance. ‘Use Tor, Use Signal,’ he tweeted out.

“With endorsements like these, Signal quickly became the go-to app for political activists around the world. Egypt, Russia, Syria, and even the United States—millions downloaded Signal, and it became the communication app of choice for those who hoped to avoid police surveillance. Feminist collectives, anti-President Donald Trump protesters, communists, anarchists, radical animal rights organizations, Black Lives Matter activists—all flocked to Signal. Many were heeding Snowden’s advice: ‘Organize. Compartmentalize to limit compromise. Encrypt everything, from calls to texts (use Signal as a first step.)’ . . . .”

Yasha Levine sums up the fundamental contradictions inherent  in this dynamic: ” . . . . If you stepped back to survey the scene, the entire landscape of this new Internet Freedom privacy movement looked absurd. Cold War-era organizations spun off from the CIA now funding the global movement against government surveillance? Google and Facebook, companies that ran private surveillance networks and worked hand in hand with the NSA, deploying government-funded privacy tech to protect their users from government surveillance? Privacy activists working with Silicon Valley and the US government to fight government surveillance—and with the support of Edward Snowden himself? . . . .”

Following Snowden’s promotion of OTF’s Tor and Signal technologies, OTF was at a zenith: ” . . . . After Edward Snowden, OTF was triumphant. It didn’t mention the leaker by name in its promotional materials, but it profited from the crypto culture he promoted and benefited from his direct endorsement of the crypto tools it financed. It boasted that its partnership with both Silicon Valley and respected privacy activists meant that hundreds of millions of people could use the privacy tools the US government had brought to market. And OTF promised that this was just a start: ‘By leveraging social network effects, we expect to expand to a billion regular users taking advantage of OTF-supported tools and Internet Freedom technologies by 2015. . . .’

As eventually became clear, the Tor network was easily breached. It is a safe bet that the fascists grouped around the Pirate Bay site (on which WikiLeaks held forth), had breached Tor’s “secrecy,” in addition to the obvious fact that intelligence services could penetrate it at will.

With this in mind, John Young’s rumination about WikiLeaks sound more and more substantive.

In all probability, WikiLeaks was a huge data mining operation both by the very intelligence agencies who were ostensibly targeted by WikiLeaks, and the Fascist International network around Carl Lundstrom, Daniel Friberg, David Duke et al.

In FTR #’s 756 and 831 we noted Snowden’s fascist views and connections. Levine merely characterizes him as a “right-wing libertarian,” but there is MUCH MORE TO IT THAN  THAT!

Snowden downplayed the fundamental role of the Big Tech firms in aiding and abetting government surveillance, in addition to their own massive surveillance and resultant data mining. ” . . . . There, while living under state protection at an undisclosed location in Moscow, he swept Silicon Valley’s role in Internet surveillance under the rug. Asked about it by Washington Post reporter Barton Gellman, who had first reported on the NSA’s PRISM program, Snowden shrugged off the danger posed by companies like Google and Facebook. The reason? Because private companies do not have the power to arrest, jail, or kill people. ‘Twitter doesn’t put warheads on foreheads,’ he joked. . . .”

Embodying his “corporatist” and Technocratic Fascist point of view, Snowden championed the Big Tech firms as bulwarks against government Internet surveillance, despite the only-too-obvious fact (reinforced by the documents he leaked) that Big Tech is–and always has been–in bed with, and actively collaborating with, the very government intelligence agencies conducting that surveillance: ” . . . . The only islands of safety were the private data centers controlled by private companies—Google, Apple, Facebook. These were the cyber-fortresses and walled cities that offered sanctuary to the masses. In this chaotic landscape, computer engineers and cryptographers played the role of selfless galloping knights and wizard-warriors whose job was to protect the weak folk of the Internet: the young, the old and infirm, families. It was their duty to ride out, weapons aloft, and convey people and their precious data safely from fortress to fortress, not letting any of the information fall into the hands of government spies. He called on them to start a people’s privacy war, rallying them to go forth and liberate the Internet, to reclaim it from the governments of the world. . . .”

The nauseating head of Facebook–Mark Zuckerberg–has decried the intelligence community’s use of the Internet for data mining. In FTR #1077, we highlighted the Cambridge Analytica affair, and Facebook’s full cooperation with that project at every turn.

Other Big Tech firms had similar reactions. “. . . . . ‘We hadn’t even heard of PRISM before yesterday,’ Mark Zuckerberg wrote in a Facebook post. He blamed the government and positioned Facebook as a victim. “I’ve called President Obama to express my frustration over the damage the government is creating for all of our future. Unfortunately, it seems like it will take a very long time for true full reform.’ Apple,  Microsoft, Google, and Yahoo! All reacted in much the same way, denying the allegations and painting themselves as the victims of government overreach. ‘It’s tremendously disappointing that the government sort of secretly did all this stuff and didn’t tell us. We can’t have a democracy if we’re having to protect you and our users from the government,’ Larry Page told Charlie Rose in an interview on CBS. . . . .”

We present the conclusion of the main part of the book, with Levine’s summation of the inextricable nature and symbiosis between the Internet, the tech firms and the so-called “privacy community.”

The key points of discussion and analysis of Levine’s book (as a whole) include:

1.–The Internet is a weapon, developed for counter-insurgency purposes.
2.–Big Tech firms network with the very intelligence services they publicly decry.
3.–Big Tech firms that data mine their customers on a nearly unimaginable scale do so as a direct, operational extension of the very surveillance function upon which  the Internet is predicated.
4.–The technologies touted by the so-called “Privacy Activists” such as Edward Snowden and Jacob Applebaum were developed by the very intelligence services they are supposed to deflect.
5.–The technologies touted by the so-called “Privacy Activists” such as Edward Snowden and Jacob Applebaum–such as the Tor Internet function and the Signal mobile phone app– are readily accessible to the very intelligence services they are supposed to deflect.
6.–The organizations that promote the alleged virtues of Snowden, Applebaum, Tor, Signal et al are linked to the very intelligence services they would have us believe they oppose.
7.–Big Tech firms embrace “Internet Freedom” as a distraction from their own willful and all-embracing data mining and their ongoing conscious collaboration with the very intelligence services they publicly decry.

NB: Mr. Levine does not go into the fascistic character of Snowden, Assange, Greenwald et al. Some of those shows: Greenwald–FTR #888, Snowden–FTR #’s 756, 831, Assange and WikiLeaks–FTR #’s 732, 745, 755, 917.

“. . . . Then there was the fact that Signal ran on Amazon’s servers, which meant that all its data were available to a partner in the NSA’s PRISM surveillance program. Equally problematic, Signal needed Apple and Google to install and run the app on people’s mobile phones. Both companies were, and as far as we know still are, partners in PRISM as well. ‘Google usually has root access to the phone, there’s the issue of integrity,’ writes Sander Venema, a respected developer and secure—technology trainer, in a blog post explaining why he no longer recommends people use Signal for encrypted chat. ‘Google is still cooperating with the NSA and other intelligence agencies. PRISM is also still a thing. I’m pretty sure that Google could serve a specially modified update or version of Signal to specific target for surveillance, and they would be none the wiser that they installed malware on their phones.’ . . .

. . . . So, although the app encrypted the content of people’s messages, it also marked them with a flashing red sign: ‘Follow Me, I Have Something to Hide.’ (Indeed, activists protesting at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia in 2016 told me that they were bewildered by the fact that police seemed to know and anticipate their every move despite their having used Signal to organize. . . .”

” . . . . For many Internet companies, including Google and Facebook, surveillance is the business model. It is the base on which their corporate and economic power rests. Disentangle surveillance and profit, and these companies would collapse. Limit data collection, an the companies would see investors flee and their stock prices plummet. [Italics are mine–D.E.]

“Silicon Valley fears a political solution to privacy. Internet Freedom and crypto offer an acceptable alternative. Tools like Signal and Tor provide a false solution to the privacy problem, focusing people’s attention on government surveillance and distracting them from the private spying carried out by the Internet companies they use every day. All the while, crypto tools give people a [false] sense that they’re doing something to protect themselves, a feeling of personal empowerment and control. And all those crypto radicals? Well, they just enhance the illusion, heightening the impression of risk and danger. With Signal or Tor installed, using an iPhone or Android suddenly becomes edgy and radical. So instead of pushing for political and democratic solutions to surveillance, we outsource our privacy politics to crypto apps–software made by the very same powerful entities that these apps are supposed to protect us from. . . .”


FTR #1079 Surveillance Valley, Part 5: Double Agents (Foxes Guarding the Online Privacy Henhouse, Part 2)

Continuing with our examination of Yasha Levine’s seminal volume Surveillance Valley, we continue our analysis of the individuals, institutions and technologies central to the so-called “online privacy” effort. The Tor Project, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the Broadcasting Board of Governors and its Open Technology Fund and Jacob Appelbaum are all the opposite of what they have been represented as being.

We begin with information overlapped from our last program, highlighting how Jacob Appelbaum and the Tor network hooked up with WikiLeaks.

Tor, Appelbaum, Assange and WikiLeaks:

1.–Became increasingly intertwined, enjoying accolades from many, apparently unsuspecting, groups: ” . . . .  His [Appelbaum’s] association with WikiLeaks and Assange boosted the Tor Project’s public profile and radical credentials. Support and accolades poured in from journalists, privacy organizations, and government watchdogs. The American Civil Liberties Union partnered with Appelbaum on an Internet privacy project, and New York’s Whitney Museum—one of the leading modern art museums in the world—invited him for a ‘Surveillance Teach-In.’ The Electronic Frontier Foundation gave Tor its Pioneer Award, and Roger Dingledine made in on Foreign Policy magazine’s Top 100 Global Thinkers for protecting ‘anyone and everyone from the dangers of Big Brother.’ . . . .”
2.– Differed fundamentally from the accepted text: ” . . . . With Julian Assange endorsing Tor, reporters assumed that the US government saw the anonymity nonprofit as a threat. But internal documents obtained through FOIA from the Broadcasting Board of Governors, as well as analysis of Tor’s government contracts paint a different picture. They reveal that Appelbaum and Dingledine worked with Assange on securing WikiLeaks with Tor since late 2008 and that they kept their handlers at the BBG informed about their relationship and even provided information about the inner workings of WikiLeaks’s secure submission system. . . .”
3.–Did not adversely affect the government funding of Tor at all, as might be expected by the superficial apparent reality of the situation: ” . . . . Perhaps most telling was that support from the BBG [read “CIA”–D.E.] continued even after WikiLeaks began publishing classified government information and Appelbaum became the target of a larger Department of Justice investigation into WikiLeaks. For example, on July 31, 2010, CNET reported that Appelbaum had been detained at the Las Vegas airport and questioned about his relationship with WikiLeaks. News of the detention made headlines around the world, once again highlighting Appelbaum’s close ties to Julian Assange. And a week later, Tor’s executive director Andrew Lewman, clearly worried that this might affect Tor’s funding, emailed Ken Berman at the BBG in the hopes of smoothing things over and answering ‘any questions you may have about the recent press regarding Jake and WikiLeaks.’ But Lewman was in for a pleasant surprise: Roger Dingledine had been keeping folks at the BBG in the loop, and everything seemed to be okay. ‘Great stuff, thx. Roger answered a number of questions when he met us this week in DC,’ Berman replied. . . .”
4.–” . . . . In 2011 contracts came in without a hitch–$150,000 from the Broadcasting Board of Governors and $227,118 from the State Department. Tor was even able to snag a big chunk of money from the Pentagon: a new $503,706 annual contract from the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command, an elite information and intelligence unit that houses a top-secret cyber-warfare division.The Navy was passed through SRI, the old Stanford military contractor that had done counterinsurgency, networking, and chemical weapons work for ARPA back in the 1960s and 1970s. The funds were part of a larger Navy ‘Command, Control, Communcations, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance’ program to improve military operations. A year later, Tor would see its government contracts more than double to $2.2 million: $353,000 from the State Department, $876,099 from the US Navy, and $937,800 from the Broadcasting Board of Governors. . . .”

In this context, we recall some earlier observations about WikiLeaks. John Young, one of WikiLeaks’ founders turned critic of the organization harbors deep suspicions concerning the group. ” . . . they’re acting like a cult. They’re acting like a religion. They’re acting like a government. They’re acting like a bunch of spies. They’re hiding their identity. They don’t account for the money. They promise all sorts of good things. They seldom let you know what they’re really up to. . .There was suspicion from day one that this was entrapment run by someone unknown to suck a number of people into a trap. So we actually don’t know. But it’s certainly a standard counterintelligence technique. And they’re usually pretty elaborate and pretty carefully run. They’ll even prosecute people as part of the cover story. That actually was talked about at (Sunday’s) panel. They’ll try to conceal who was informing and betraying others by pretending to prosecute them. . . .” The Tor/Appelbaum/BBG (read “CIA”)/WikiLeaks nexus may very well be proof of Young’s suspicions.

Appelbaum, WikiLeaks and Tor became fundamental to the operations of Eddie “The Friendly Spook” Snowden. In past discussion, we have noted that in the summer of 2009, when Snowden made his decision to disclose the NSA documents, he was working for the very same CIA from which the Broadcasting Board of Governors and its Open Technology Fund were derived. Jacob Appelbaum was funded by BBG, as was Tor. ” . . . . From the start, the Tor Project stood at the center of Snowden’s story. The leaker’s endorsement and promotion introduced the project to a global audience, boosting Tor’s worldwide user base from one million to six million almost overnight and injecting it into the heart of a burgeoning privacy movement. In Russia, where the BBG and Dingledine had tried but failed to recruit activists for their Tor deployment plan, use of the software increased from twenty thousand daily connections to somewhere around two hundred thousand.

“During a promotional campaign for the Tor Project, Snowden said: ‘Without Tor, the streets of the Internet become like the streets of a very heavily surveilled city. There are surveillance cameras everywhere, and if the adversary simply takes enough time, they can follow the tapes back and see everything you’ve done. With Tor, we have private spaces and private lives, where we can choose who we want to associate with and how, without the fear of what that is going to look like if it is abused. The design of the Tor system is structured in such a way that even if the US Government wanted to subvert it, it couldn’t.’ Snowden didn’t talk about Tor’s continued government funding, nor did he address an apparent contradiction: why the US government would fund a program that supposedly limited its own power. Whatever Snowden’s private thought on the matter, his endorsement gave Tor the highest possible seal of approval. It was like a Hacker’s Medal of Valor. With Snowden’s backing, no one even thought to question Tor’s radical antigovernment bona fides. . . .”

Next, we review information about the so-called “Arab Spring.” In FTR #’s 733 through 739, we presented our view that the so-called Arab Spring was a U.S. intelligence operation, aimed at placing the Brotherhood in power in Muslim countries dominated either by a secular dictator or absolute monarchy.

Yasha Levine has highlighted the role of U.S. tech personnel in training and prepping the Arab Spring online activists. As we have noted in the past, the so-called Arab Spring might have been better thought of as “The Muslim Brotherhood Spring,” as the neo-liberal, privatization ideology of Brotherhood economic icon Ibn Khaldun was fundamental to the operation.

The economic goals of the Arab Spring “op” were reviewed in, among other programs, FTR #’s 1025 and 1026.

Recall while reading the following excerpts of this remarkable and important book, that:

1.–The Tor network was developed by, and used and compromised by, elements of U.S. intelligence.
2.–One of the primary advocates and sponsors of the Tor network is the Broadcasting Board of Governors. As we saw in FTR #’s 891, 895, is an extension of the CIA.
3.–Jacob Appelbaum has been financed by the Broadcasting Board of Governors, advocates use of the Tor network, has helped WikiLeaks with its extensive use of the Tor network, and is an ideological acolyte of Ayn Rand.

The Arab Spring provided motivation for enhanced U.S. funding for Internet Freedom. The Open Technology Fund, like the BBG a CIA “derivative,” was at the center of this: ” . . . . The motivation for this expansion came out of the Arab Spring. The idea was to make sure the US government would maintain its technological advantage in the censorship arms race that began in the early 2000s, but the funds were also going into developing a new generation of tools aimed at leveraging the power of the Internet to help foreign opposition activists organize into cohesive political movements. The BBG’s $25.5 million cut of the cash more than doubled the agency’s anticensorship technology budget from the previous year, and the BBG funneled the money into the Open Technology Fund, a new organization it had created within Radio Free Asia to fund Internet Freedom technologies in the wake of the Arab Spring. . . .”

The fundamental position of BBG and OTF (read “CIA”) to the so-called online privacy community was concisely expressed by Yasha Levine: ” . . . . From behind this hip and connected exterior, BBG and Radio Free Asia built a vertically integrated incubator for Internet Freedom technologies, pouring millions into projects big and small, including everything from evading censorship to helping political organizing, protests, and movement building. With its deep pockets and its recruitment of big-name privacy activists, the Open Technology Fund didn’t just thrust itself into the privacy movement. In many ways, it WAS the privacy movement. . . .”


FTR #1078 Surveillance Valley, Part 4: Tor Up (Foxes Guarding the Online Privacy Henhouse, Part 1.)

Yasha Levine’s summation of the inextricable nature and symbiosis between the Internet, the tech firms and the so-called “privacy community” include:

1.–The Internet is a weapon, developed for counter-insurgency purposes.
2.–Big Tech firms network with the very intelligence services they publicly decry.
3.–Big Tech firms that data mine their customers on a nearly unimaginable scale do so as a direct, operational extension of the very surveillance function upon which  the Internet is predicated.
4.–The technologies touted by the so-called “Privacy Activists” such as Edward Snowden and Jacob Applebaum were developed by the very intelligence services they are supposed to deflect.
5.–The technologies touted by the so-called “Privacy Activists” such as Edward Snowden and Jacob Applebaum–such as the Tor Internet function and the Signal mobile phone app– are readily accessible to the very intelligence services they are supposed to deflect.
6.–The organizations that promote the alleged virtues of Snowden, Applebaum, Tor, Signal et al are linked to the very intelligence services they would have us believe they oppose.
7.–Big Tech firms embrace “Internet Freedom” as a distraction from their own willful and all-embracing data mining and their ongoing conscious collaboration with the very intelligence services they publicly decry.

After detailing the history of the development of the Internet by the national security establishment, Levine presents the story of the development of the Tor network.

Key points of analysis and discussion:

1.–Tor’s Silicon Valley backing: ” . . . . Privacy groups funded by companies like Google and Facebook, including the Electronic Frontier Foundation and Fight for the Future, were some of Tor’s biggest and most dedicated backers. Google had directly bankrolled its development, paying out generous grants to college students who worked at Tor during their summer vacations. Why would an Internet company whose entire business rested on tracking people online promote and help develop a powerful privacy tool? Something didn’t add up. . . .”
2.–Not surprisingly, Tor does not shield users from orgiastic data mining by Silicon Valley tech giants: ” . . . . Tor works only if people are dedicated to maintaining a strict anonymous Internet routine: using only dummy email addresses and bogus accounts, carrying out all financial transactions in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, and never mentioning their real name in emails or messages. For the vast majority of people on the Internet—those who use Gmail, interact with Facebook friends, and shop on Amazon—you reveal your identity. These companies know who you are. They know your name, your shipping address, your credit card information. They continue to scan your emails, map your social networks, and compile dossiers. Tor or not, once you enter your account name and password, Tor’s anonymity technology becomes useless. . . .”
3.–Silicon Valley’s support for Tor is something of a “false bromide”: ” . . . . After all, Snowden’s leaked documents revealed that anything Internet companies had, the NSA had as well. I was puzzled, but at least I understood why Tor had backing from Silicon Valley: it offered a false sense of privacy, while not posing a threat to the industry’s underlying surveillance model. . . .”
4.–Tor is, in fact, financed by elements of the very same intelligence community and national security establishment that supposedly frustrated/”locked out” by Tor! ” . . . . But as I analyzed the organization’s financial documents, I found that the opposite was true. Tor had come out of a joint US Navy—DARPA military project in the early 2000s and continued to rely on a series of federal contracts after it was spun off into a private nonprofit. This funding came from the Pentagon, the State Department, and at least one organization that derived from the CIA. These contracts added up to several million dollars a year and, most years,  accounted for more than 90 percent of Tor’s operating budget. Tor was a federal military contractor. It even had its own federal contracting number. . . This included Tor’s founder, Roger Dingledine, who spent a summer working at the NSA and who had brought Tor to life under a series of DARPA and Navy contracts. . . .”

Widely regarded as a champion of Internet freedom and privacy, the Electronic Frontier Foundation helped finance Tor and championed its use.

Key elements of discussion and analysis of the EFF/Tor alliance include:

1.–EFF’s early financing of Tor: ” . . . . . . . . In 2004, [Roger] Dingledine struck out on his own, spinning the military onion routing project into a non-profit corporation called the Tor Project and, while still funded by DARPA and the Navy, began scratching around for private funding. He got help from an unexpected ally: the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), which gave Tor almost a quarter million dollars to keep it going while Dingledine looked for other private sponsors. The EFF even hosted Tor’s website. . . .”
2.–The EFF’s effusive praise for the fundamentally compromised Tor Project: ” . . . . ‘The Tor Project is a perfect fit for EFF, because one of our primary goals is to protect the privacy and anonymity of Internet users. Tor can help people exercise their First Amendment right to free, anonymous speech online.’ EFF’s technology manager Chris Palmer explained in a 2004 press release, which curiously failed to mention that Tor was developed primarily for military intelligence use and was still actively funded by the Pentagon. . . .”
3.–The EFF’s history of working with elements of the national security establishment: ” . . . . In 1994, EFF worked with the FBI to pass the Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act, which required all telecommunications companies to build their equipment so that it could be wiretapped by the FBI. In 1999, EFF worked to support NATO’s bombing campaign in Kosovo with something called the ‘Kosovo Privacy Support,’ which aimed to keep the region’s Internet access open during military action. Selling a Pentagon intelligence project as a grassroots privacy tool—it didn’t seem all that wild. . . .”
4.–In FTR #854, we noted that EFF co-founder John Perry Barlow was far more than a Grateful Dead lyricist/hippie icon: ” . . . . Indeed, in 2002, a few years before it funded Tor, EFF cofounder [John] Perry Barlow casually admitted that he had been consulting for intelligence agencies for a decade. It seemed that the worlds of soldiers, spies, and privacy weren’t as far apart as they appeared. . . .”
5.–EFF’s gravitas in the online privacy community lent Tor great credibility: ” . . . . EFF’s support for Tor was a big deal. The organization commanded respect in Silicon Valley and was widely seen as the ACLU of the Internet Age. The fact that it backed Tor meant that no hard questions would be asked about the anonymity tool’s military origins as it transitioned to the civilian world. And that’s exactly what happened. . . .”

In FTR #’s 891 and 895, we noted the primary position of the Broadcasting Board of Governors in the development of the so-called “privacy” networks. The BBG is a CIA offshoot: “. . . .  The BBG might have had a bland sounding name and professed a noble mission to inform the world and spread democracy. In truth, the organization was an outgrowth of the Central Intelligence Agency. . . . The bulk of the BBG is no longer funded from the CIA’s black budget, but the agency’s original cold War goal and purpose—subversion and psychological operations directed against countries deemed hostile to US interests—remain the same. The only thing that did change about the BBG is that today, more of its broadcasts are taking place online . . . .”

After documenting Radio Free Europe’s growth from the Nazi/Vichy run Radio France during World War II and RCA’s David Sarnoff’s involvement with the Transradio Consortium (which communicated vital intelligence to the Axis during the war), the program highlights the involvement of Gehlen operatives in the operations of Radio Free Europe, the seminal CIA broadcasting outlets.

The BBG (read “CIA”) became a major backer of the Tor Project: ” . . . . . . . . It was Wednesday morning, February 8, 2006, when Roger Dingledine got the email he had been badly waiting for. The Broadcasting Board of Governors had finally agreed to back the Tor Project. . . . Within a year, the agency increased Tor’s contract to a quarter million dollars, and then bumped it up again to almost a million just a few years later. The relationship also led to major contracts with other federal agencies, boosting Tor’s meager operating budget to several million dollars a year. . . .”

Yasha Levine sums up the essence of the Tor Project: ” . . . . The Tor Project was not a radical indie organization fighting The Man. For all intents and purposes, it was The Man. Or, at least, The Man’s right hand. . . . internal correspondence reveals Tor’s close collaboration with the BBG and multiple other wings of the US government, in particular those that dealt with foreign policy and soft-power projection. Messages describe meetings, trainings, and conferences with the NSA, CIA, FBI and State Department. . . . The funding record tells the story even more precisely. . . . Tor was subsisting almost exclusively on government contracts. By 2008, that included  contracts with DARPA, the Navy, the BBG, and the State Department as well as Stanford Research Institute’s Cyber-Threat Analytics program. . . .” 

Next, we begin chronicling the career of Jacob Appelbaum. A devotee of Ayn Rand, he became one of Tor’s most important employees and promoters. “. . . . Within months of getting the job, he assumed the role of official Tor Project spokesman and began promoting Tor as a powerful weapon against government oppression. . . . Over the next several years, Dingledine’s reports back to the BBG [read “CIA”–D.E.] were filled with descriptions of Appelbaum’s successful outreach. . . .”

Introducing a topic to be more fully explored in our next program, we note Appelbaum’s pivotal role in the WikiLeaks operation and his role in the adoption of Tor by WikiLeaks: ” . . . . Appelbaum decided to attach himself to the WikiLeaks cause. He spent a few weeks with Assange and the original WikiLeaks crew in Iceland as they prepared their first major release and helped secure the site’s anonymous submissions system using Tor’s hidden service feature, which hid the physical location of WikiLeaks servers and in theory made them much less susceptible to surveillance and attack. From then on, the WikiLeaks site proudly advertised Tor: ‘secure, anonymous, distributed network for maximum security.’ . . . . Appelbaum did his best to be Assange’s right-hand man. He served as the organization’s official American representative and bailed the founder of WikiLeaks out of tough spots when the heat from US authorities got too hot. Appelbaum became so intertwined with WikiLeaks that apparently some staffers talked about him leading the organization if something were to happen to Assange. . . . Assange gave Appelbaum and Tor wide credit for helping WikiLeaks. ‘Jake has been a tireless promoter behind the scenes of our cause,’ he told a reporter. ‘Tor’s importance to WikiLeaks cannot be underestimated.’ With those words, Appelbaum and the Tor Project became central heroes in the WikiLeaks saga, right behind Assange. . . .”


FTR #1077 Surveillance Valley, Part 3: Cambridge Analytica, Democracy and Counterinsurgency

Continuing the discussion from FTR #1076, the broadcast recaps key aspects of analysis of the Cambridge Analytica scandal.

In our last program, we noted that both the internet (DARPA projects including Project Agile) and the German Nazi Party had their origins as counterinsurgency gambits. Noting Hitler’s speech before The Industry Club of Dusseldorf, in which he equated communism with democracy, we highlight how the Cambridge Analytica scandal reflects the counterinsurgency origins of the Internet, and how the Cambridge Analytica affair embodies anti-Democracy/as counterinsurgency.

Key aspects of the Cambridge Analytica affair include:

1.–The use of psychographic personality testing on Facebook that is used for political advantage: ” . . . . For several years, a data firm eventually hired by the Trump campaign, Cambridge Analytica, has been using Facebook as a tool to build psychological profiles that represent some 230 million adult Americans. A spinoff of a British consulting company and sometime-defense contractor known for its counterterrorism ‘psy ops’ work in Afghanistan, the firm does so by seeding the social network with personality quizzes. Respondents — by now hundreds of thousands of us, mostly female and mostly young but enough male and older for the firm to make inferences about others with similar behaviors and demographics — get a free look at their Ocean scores. Cambridge Analytica also gets a look at their scores and, thanks to Facebook, gains access to their profiles and real names. . . .”
2.–The parent company of Cambridge Analytica–SCL–was deeply involved with counterterrorism “psy-ops” in Afghanistan, embodying the essence of the counterinsurgency dynamic at the root of the development of the Internet. The use of online data to subvert democracy recalls Hitler’s speech to the Industry Club of Dusseldorf, in which he equated democracy with communism: ” . . . . Cambridge Analytica was a company spun out of SCL Group, a British military contractor that worked in information operations for armed forces around the world. It was conducting research on how to scale and digitise information warfare – the use of information to confuse or degrade the efficacy of an enemy. . . . As director of research, Wylie’s original role was to map out how the company would take traditional information operations tactics into the online space – in particular, by profiling people who would be susceptible to certain messaging. This morphed into the political arena. After Wylie left, the company worked on Donald Trump’s US presidential campaign . . . .”
3.–Cambridge Analytica whistleblower Christopher Wylie’s observations on the anti-democratic nature of the firm’s work: ” . . . . It was this shift from the battlefield to politics that made Wylie uncomfortable. ‘When you are working in information operations projects, where your target is a combatant, the autonomy or agency of your targets is not your primary consideration. It is fair game to deny and manipulate information, coerce and exploit any mental vulnerabilities a person has, and to bring out the very worst characteristics in that person because they are an enemy,’ he says. ‘But if you port that over to a democratic system, if you run campaigns designed to undermine people’s ability to make free choices and to understand what is real and not real, you are undermining democracy and treating voters in the same way as you are treating terrorists.’ . . . .”
4.–Wylie’s observations on how Cambridge Analytica’s methodology can be used to build a fascist political movement: ” . . . . One of the reasons these techniques are so insidious is that being a target of a disinformation campaign is ‘usually a pleasurable experience’, because you are being fed content with which you are likely to agree. ‘You are being guided through something that you want to be true,’ Wylie says. To build an insurgency, he explains, you first target people who are more prone to having erratic traits, paranoia or conspiratorial thinking, and get them to ‘like’ a group on social media. They start engaging with the content, which may or may not be true; either way ‘it feels good to see that information’. When the group reaches 1,000 or 2,000 members, an event is set up in the local area. Even if only 5% show up, ‘that’s 50 to 100 people flooding a local coffee shop’, Wylie says. This, he adds, validates their opinion because other people there are also talking about ‘all these things that you’ve been seeing online in the depths of your den and getting angry about’. People then start to believe the reason it’s not shown on mainstream news channels is because ‘they don’t want you to know what the truth is’. As Wylie sums it up: ‘What started out as a fantasy online gets ported into the temporal world and becomes real to you because you see all these people around you.’ . . . .”
5.–Wylie’s observation that Facebook was “All In” on the Cambridge Analytica machinations: ” . . . . ‘Facebook has known about what Cambridge Analytica was up to from the very beginning of those projects,” Wylie claims. “They were notified, they authorised the applications, they were given the terms and conditions of the app that said explicitly what it was doing. They hired people who worked on building the app. I had legal correspondence with their lawyers where they acknowledged it happened as far back as 2016.’ . . . .”
6.–The decisive participation of “Spy Tech” firm Palantir in the Cambridge Analytica operation: Peter Thiel’s surveillance firm Palantir was apparently deeply involved with Cambridge Analytica’s gaming of personal data harvested from Facebook in order to engineer an electoral victory for Trump. Thiel was an early investor in Facebook, at one point was its largest shareholder and is still one of its largest shareholders. In addition to his opposition to democracy because it allegedly is inimical to wealth creation, Thiel doesn’t think women should be allowed to vote and holds Nazi legal theoretician Carl Schmitt in high regard. ” . . . . It was a Palantir employee in London, working closely with the data scientists building Cambridge’s psychological profiling technology, who suggested the scientists create their own app — a mobile-phone-based personality quiz — to gain access to Facebook users’ friend networks, according to documents obtained by The New York Times. The revelations pulled Palantir — co-founded by the wealthy libertarian Peter Thiel — into the furor surrounding Cambridge, which improperly obtained Facebook data to build analytical tools it deployed on behalf of Donald J. Trump and other Republican candidates in 2016. Mr. Thiel, a supporter of President Trump, serves on the board at Facebook. ‘There were senior Palantir employees that were also working on the Facebook data,’ said Christopher Wylie, a data expert and Cambridge Analytica co-founder, in testimony before British lawmakers on Tuesday. . . . The connections between Palantir and Cambridge Analytica were thrust into the spotlight by Mr. Wylie’s testimony on Tuesday. Both companies are linked to tech-driven billionaires who backed Mr. Trump’s campaign: Cambridge is chiefly owned by Robert Mercer, the computer scientist and hedge fund magnate, while Palantir was co-founded in 2003 by Mr. Thiel, who was an initial investor in Facebook. . . .”
7.–The use of “dark posts” by the Cambridge Analytica team. (We have noted that Brad Parscale has reassembled the old Cambridge Analytica team for Trump’s 2020 election campaign. It seems probable that AOC’s millions of online followers, as well as the “Bernie Bots,” will be getting “dark posts” crafted by AI’s scanning their online efforts.) ” . . . . One recent advertising product on Facebook is the so-called ‘dark post’: A newsfeed message seen by no one aside from the users being targeted. With the help of Cambridge Analytica, Mr. Trump’s digital team used dark posts to serve different ads to different potential voters, aiming to push the exact right buttons for the exact right people at the exact right times. . . .”

Supplementing the discussion about Cambridge Analytica, the program reviews information from FTR #718 about Facebook’s apparent involvement with elements and individuals linked to CIA and DARPA: ” . . . . Facebook’s most recent round of funding was led by a company called Greylock Venture Capital, who put in the sum of $27.5m. One of Greylock’s senior partners is called Howard Cox, another former chairman of the NVCA, who is also on the board of In-Q-Tel. What’s In-Q-Tel? Well, believe it or not (and check out their website), this is the venture-capital wing of the CIA. After 9/11, the US intelligence community became so excited by the possibilities of new technology and the innovations being made in the private sector, that in 1999 they set up their own venture capital fund, In-Q-Tel, which ‘identifies and partners with companies developing cutting-edge technologies to help deliver these solutions to the Central Intelligence Agency and the broader US Intelligence Community (IC) to further their missions’. . . .”

More about the CIA/DARPA links to the development of Facebook: ” . . . . The second round of funding into Facebook ($US12.7 million) came from venture capital firm Accel Partners. Its manager James Breyer was formerly chairman of the National Venture Capital Association, and served on the board with Gilman Louie, CEO of In-Q-Tel, a venture capital firm established by the Central Intelligence Agency in 1999. One of the company’s key areas of expertise are in ‘data mining technologies’. Breyer also served on the board of R&D firm BBN Technologies, which was one of those companies responsible for the rise of the internet. Dr Anita Jones joined the firm, which included Gilman Louie. She had also served on the In-Q-Tel’s board, and had been director of Defence Research and Engineering for the US Department of Defence. She was also an adviser to the Secretary of Defence and overseeing the Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), which is responsible for high-tech, high-end development. . . .”

Program Highlights Include: Review of Facebook’s plans to use brain-to-computer technology to operate its platform, thereby the enabling of recording and databasing people’s thoughts; Review of Facebook’s employment of former DARPA head Regina Dugan to implement the brain-to-computer technology; Review of Facebook’s building 8–designed to duplicate DARPA; Review of Facebook’s hiring of the Atlantic Council to police the social medium’s online content; Review of Facebook’s partnering with Narendra Modi’s Hindutva fascist government in India; Review of Facebook’s emloyment of Ukrainian fascist Kateryna Kruk to manage the social medium’s Ukrainian content.


FTR #1076 Surveillance Valley, Part 2: Mauthausen on Our Mind

The program begins with recap of the adaptation of IBM’s Hollerith machines to Nazi data compilation. (We concluded FTR #1075 with discussion of this.): ” . . . . Germany’s vast state bureaucracy and its military and rearmament programs, including the country’s growing concentration camp/slave labor system, also required data processing services. By the time the U.S. officially entered the war in 1941, IBM’s German subsidiary had grown to employ 10,000 people and served 300 different German government agencies. The Nazi Party Treasury; the SS; the War Ministry; the Reichsbank; the Reichspost; the Armaments Ministry; the Navy, Army and Air Force; and the Reich Statistical Office — the list of IBM’s clients went on and on.

” ‘Indeed, the Third Reich would open startling statistical venues for Hollerith machines never before instituted — perhaps never before even imagined,’ wrote Edwin Black in IBM and the Holocaust, his pioneering 2001 exposé of the forgotten business ties between IBM and Nazi Germany. ‘In Hitler’s Germany, the statistical and census community, overrun with doctrinaire Nazis, publicly boasted about the new demographic breakthroughs their equipment would achieve.’ . . . .

“Demand for Hollerith tabulators was so robust that IBM was forced to open a new factory in Berlin to crank out all the new machines. At the facility’s christening ceremony, which was attended by a top U.S. IBM executive and the elite of the Nazi Party, the head of IBM’s German subsidiary gave a rousing speech about the important role that Hollerith tabulators played in Hitler’s drive to purify Germany and cleanse it of inferior racial stock. . . .”

In that same article, Yasha Levine notes that the Trump administration’s proposed changes in the 2020 census sound as though they may portend something akin to the Nazi census of 1933: ” . . . . Based on a close reading of internal Department of Commerce documents tied to the census citizen question proposal, it appears the Trump administration wants to use the census to construct a first-of-its-kind citizenship registry for the entire U.S. population — a decision that arguably exceeds the legal authority of the census. ‘It was deep in the documentation that was released,’ Robert Groves, a former Census Bureau director who headed the National Academies committee convened to investigate the 2020 census, told me by telephone. ‘No one picked up on it much. But the term ‘registry’ in our world means not a collection of data for statistical purposes but rather to know the identity of particular people in order to use that knowledge to affect their lives.’ Given the administration’s posture toward immigration, the fact that it wants to build a comprehensive citizenship database is highly concerning. To Groves, it clearly signals ‘a bright line being crossed.’ . . .”

In the conclusion to Surveillance Valley, Yasha Levine notes how IBM computing technology facilitated the Nazi slave labor operations throughout the Third Reich. The epicenter of this was Mauthausen.

The systematic use of slave labor was central to Nazi Germany’s industrial infrastructure: ” . . . . But in the 1930s, Mauthausen had been a vital economic engine of Hitler’s genocidal plan to remake Europe and the Soviet Union into his own backyard utopia. It started out as a granite quarry but quickly grew into the largest slave labor complex in Nazi Germany, with fifty sub-camps that spanned most of modern-day Austria. Here, hundreds of thousands of prisoners–mostly European Jews but also Roma, Spaniards, Russians, Serbs, Slovenes, Germans, Bulgarians, even Cubans–were worked to death. They refined oil, built fighter aircraft, assembled cannons, developed rocket technology, and were leased out to private German businesses. Volkswagen, Siemens, Daimler-Benz, BMW, Bosch–all benefited from the camp’s slave labor pool. Mauthausen, the administrative nerve center, was centrally directed from Berlin using the latest in early computer technology: IBM punch card tabulators. . . .”

Mauthausen’s IBM machines were, in turn, central to German industry’s use of slave labor: ” . . . . the camp had several IBM machines working overtime to handle the big churn of inmates and to make sure there were always enough bodies to perform the necessary work. These machines didn’t operate in isolation but were part of a larger slave labor control-and-accounting system that stretched across Nazi-occupied Europe connecting Berlin to every major concentration and labor punch card, telegraph, telephone, and human courier. This wasn’t the automated type of computer network system that the Pentagon would begin to build in the United States just a decade later, but it was an information network nonetheless: an electromechanical web that fueled and sustained Nazi Germany’s war machine with blazing efficiency. It extended beyond the labor camps and reached into the cities and towns, crunching mountains of genealogical data to track down people with even the barest whiff of Jewish blood or perceived racial impurity in a mad rush to fulfill Adolf Hitler’s drive to purify the German people, but they made the Nazi death machine run faster and more efficiently, scouring the population and tracking down victims in ways that would never have been possible without them. . . .”

In his book–one of the most important in recent memory–Yasha Levine sets forth vital, revelatory information about the development and functioning of the Internet.

Born of the same overlapping DARPA projects that spawned Agent Orange, the Internet was never intended to be something good. Its generative function and purpose is counter-insurgency. ” . . . . In the 1960s, America was a global power overseeing an increasingly volatile world: conflicts and regional insurgencies against US-allied governments from South America to Southeast Asia and the Middle East. These were not traditional wars that involved big armies but guerilla campaigns and local rebellions, frequently fought in regions where Americans had little previous experience. Who were these people? Why were they rebelling? What could be done to stop them? In military circles, it was believed that these questions were of vital importance to America’s pacification efforts, and some argued that the only effective way to answer them was to develop and leverage computer-aided information technology. The Internet came out of this effort: an attempt to build computer systems that could collect and share intelligence, watch the world in real time, and study and analyze people and political movements with the ultimate goal of predicting and preventing social upheaval. . . .”

In this landmark volume, Levine makes numerous points, including:

1.–The harvesting of data by intelligence services is PRECISELY what the Internet was designed to do in the first place.
2.–The harvesting of data engaged in by the major tech corporations is an extension of the data gathering/surveillance that was–and is–the raison d’etre for the Internet in the first place.
3.–The big tech companies all collaborate with the various intelligence agencies they publicly scorn and seek to ostensibly distance themselves from.
4.–Edward Snowden, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, Jacob Appelbaum, the milieu of the Tor Network and WikiLeaks are complicit in the data harvesting and surveillance.
5.–Snowden and other privacy activists are double agents, consciously channeling people fearful of having their communications monitored into technologies that will facilitate that surveillance!

The program notes that counterinsurgency–the functional context of the origin of the Internet–is at the foundation of the genesis of Nazism. At the conclusion of World War I, Germany was beset by a series of socialist/Communist uprisings in a number of cities, including Munich. Responding to that, underground Reichswehr units commanded by Ernst Rohm (later head of the SA) systematically assassinated the leaders of the revolution, as well as prominent social democrats and Jews, such as Walther Rathenau. In Munich, an undercover agent for the political department of the Reichswehr under General Von Lossow infiltrated the revolutionaries, pretending to be one of them.

Following the crushing of the rebellion and occupation of the city by Reichswehr units, that infiltrator identified the leaders of the revolution, who were then summarily executed. The infiltrator’s name was Adolf Hitler.

After the suppression of the rebellion, Hitler, Rohm and undercover Reichswehr agents infiltrated a moribund political party and turned it into an intelligence front for the introduction of the supposedly de-mobilized German Army into German society for the purpose of generating political reaction. That front was the German National Social Workers Party.

The broadcast re-capitulates (from part of Miscellaneous Archive Show M11) Hitler’s speech to the Industry Club of Dusseldorf. This speech, which won the German industrial and financial elite over to the cause of the Nazi Party, equated democracy with Communism.

Manifesting a Social Darwinist perspective, Hitler opined that the [assembled] successful, accomplished were, by definition superior to others. If those, by definition, inferior people were allowed to control the political process, they would structure the social and economic landscape to their own benefit.

This, according to Hitler, would be counter-evolutionary.


FTR #1075 Surveillance Valley, Part 1: Eugenics, Racism and High Tech

Beginning a critically important series on a vitally important book titled Surveillance Valley: The Secret Military History of the Internet, this program explores the genesis of high tech and data processing, an origin that is inextricably linked with eugenics, anti-immigrant doctrine and–as is characteristic of fascism, the fear of the ubiquitous, malevolent “other.”

Highlights of discussion and analysis include:

1.–The genesis of high tech was Herman Hollerith’s tabulating machine. ” . . . . A few years earlier, working for the U.S. Census Bureau, Hollerith had developed the world’s first functional mass-produced computer: the Hollerith tabulator. An electromechanical device about the size of large desk and dresser, it used punch cards and a clever arrangement of gears, sorters, electrical contacts, and dials to process data with blazing speed and accuracy. What had taken years by hand could be done in a matter of months. As one U.S. newspaper described it, ‘with [the device’s] aid some 15 young ladies can count accurately half a million of names in a day.’ . . .’
2.–Hollerith’s machine found its (arguably) greatest application with the compilation of the census and the application of the pseudo-science of eugenics to it: ” . . . . Grasping about for solutions, many settled on various strains of race science quackery. So-called social Darwinists relied on a twisted version of the theory of evolution to explain why the poor and marginalized should remain that way while the wealthy and successful deserved to rule unchallenged. Taking this notion a step further, adherents of eugenics fervently believed that naturally superior Anglo-Americans were on the verge of being wiped out due to the high birth rates of ‘degenerate’ and immigrant stock. To head off this threat, they advocated strict controls on reproduction — breeding humans for quality in the same way that farmers did cows and horses. . . .”
3.–Hollerith’s machine was seen as the perfect vehicle for realizing eugenic practice through refining the census: ” . . . . The census had been a racial instrument from its inception, beginning with the original constitutional clause that instructed census officials to count black slaves separately from whites and to assign them a value of only three-fifths of a person. With each decade, new ‘racial’ categories were invented and added to the mix: ‘free colored males and females’ and ‘mulatto’ were counted, including subdivisions like including ‘quadroon’ and ‘octoroon.’ Categories for Chinese, ‘Hindoo,’ and Japanese were added, as were ‘foreign’ and ‘native born’ designations for whites. The census slowly expanded to collect other demographic data, including literacy levels, unemployment statistics, and medical ailments, such as those who were ‘deaf, dumb, and blind’ and the ‘insane and idiotic.’ All of it was broken down by race. . . .The census needed to improve drastically. What it needed was a talented inventor, someone young and ambitious who would be able to come up with a method to automate tabulation and data analysis. Someone like Herman Hollerith. . . .”
4.–Hollerith’s technology–when applied to the census, anticipated the mass surveillance technology of the internet: ” . . . . Overnight, Hollerith’s tabulator technology had transformed census taking from a simple head count into something that looked very much like a crude form of mass surveillance. To the race-obsessed political class, it was a revolutionary development. They could finally put the nation’s ethnic makeup under the microscope. The data seemed to confirm the nativists’ worst fears: Poor, illiterate immigrants were swarming America’s cities, breeding like rabbits, and outstripping native Anglo-American birth rates. Immediately following the census, the states and the federal government passed a flurry of laws that heavily restricted immigration. . . .”
5.–As discussed in FTR #279, IBM’s Hollerith machines (acquired when Thomas J. Watson bought out Hollerith) were fundamental to the operations of the Third Reich: ” . . . . ‘Indeed, the Third Reich would open startling statistical venues for Hollerith machines never before instituted — perhaps never before even imagined,’ wrote Edwin Black in IBM and the Holocaust, his pioneering 2001 exposé of the forgotten business ties between IBM and Nazi Germany. ‘In Hitler’s Germany, the statistical and census community, overrun with doctrinaire Nazis, publicly boasted about the new demographic breakthroughs their equipment would achieve.’ . . . Demand for Hollerith tabulators was so robust that IBM was forced to open a new factory in Berlin to crank out all the new machines. At the facility’s christening ceremony, which was attended by a top U.S. IBM executive and the elite of the Nazi Party, the head of IBM’s German subsidiary gave a rousing speech about the important role that Hollerith tabulators played in Hitler’s drive to purify Germany and cleanse it of inferior racial stock. . . .”
6.–The Trump administration’s framing of questions for the 2020 census appear aimed at creating a “national registry”–a concept reminiscent of the Third Reich’s use of IBM’s Hollerith-collected data: ” . . . . Based on a close reading of internal Department of Commerce documents tied to the census citizen question proposal, it appears the Trump administration wants to use the census to construct a first-of-its-kind citizenship registry for the entire U.S. population — a decision that arguably exceeds the legal authority of the census. ‘It was deep in the documentation that was released,’ Robert Groves, a former Census Bureau director who headed the National Academies committee convened to investigate the 2020 census, told me by telephone. ‘No one picked up on it much. But the term ‘registry’ in our world means not a collection of data for statistical purposes but rather to know the identity of particular people in order to use that knowledge to affect their lives.’ Given the administration’s posture toward immigration, the fact that it wants to build a comprehensive citizenship database is highly concerning. To Groves, it clearly signals ‘a bright line being crossed.’ . . .”


FTR #1074 FakeBook: Walkin’ the Snake on the Earth Island with Facebook (FascisBook, Part 2; In Your Facebook, Part 4)

This program supplements past coverage of Facebook in FTR #’s 718, 946, 1021, 1039 noting how Facebook has networked with the very Hindutva fascist Indian elements and OUN/B successor organizations in Ukraine. This networking has been–ostensibly to combat fake news. The reality may well highlight that the Facebook/BJP-RSS/OUN/B links generates fake news, rather than interdicting it. The fake news so generated, however, will be to the liking of the fascists in power in both countries, manifesting as a “Serpent’s Walk” revisionist scenario.

Key elements of discussion and analysis include:

1.–Indian politics has been largely dominated by fake news, spread by social media: ” . . . . In the continuing Indian elections, as 900 million people are voting to elect representatives to the lower house of the Parliament, disinformation and hate speech are drowning out truth on social media networks in the country and creating a public health crisis like the pandemics of the past century. This contagion of a staggering amount of morphed images, doctored videos and text messages is spreading largely through messaging services and influencing what India’s voters watch and read on their smartphones. A recent study by Microsoft found that over 64 percent Indians encountered fake news online, the highest reported among the 22 countries surveyed. . . . These platforms are filled with fake news and disinformation aimed at influencing political choices during the Indian elections. . . . ”
2.–Narendra Modi’s Hindutva fascist BJP has been the primary beneficiary of fake news, and his regime has partnered with Facebook: ” . . . . The hearing was an exercise in absurdist theater because the governing B.J.P. has been the chief beneficiary of divisive content that reaches millions because of the way social media algorithms, especially Facebook, amplify ‘engaging’ articles. . . .”
3.–Rajesh Jain is among those BJP functionaries who serve Facebook, as well as the Hindutva fascists: ” . . . . By the time Rajesh Jain was scaling up his operations in 2013, the BJP’s information technology (IT) strategists had begun interacting with social media platforms like Facebook and its partner WhatsApp. If supporters of the BJP are to be believed, the party was better than others in utilising the micro-targeting potential of the platforms. However, it is also true that Facebook’s employees in India conducted training workshops to help the members of the BJP’s IT cell. . . .”
4.–Dr. Hiren Joshi is another of the BJP operatives who is heavily involved with Facebook. ” . . . . Also assisting the social media and online teams to build a larger-than-life image for Modi before the 2014 elections was a team led by his right-hand man Dr Hiren Joshi, who (as already stated) is a very important adviser to Modi whose writ extends way beyond information technology and social media. . . . Joshi has had, and continues to have, a close and long-standing association with Facebook’s senior employees in India. . . .”
5.–Shivnath Thukral, who was hired by Facebook in 2017 to be its Public Policy Director for India & South Asia, worked with Joshi’s team in 2014. ” . . . . The third team, that was intensely focused on building Modi’s personal image, was headed by Hiren Joshi himself who worked out of the then Gujarat Chief Minister’s Office in Gandhinagar. The members of this team worked closely with staffers of Facebook in India, more than one of our sources told us. As will be detailed later, Shivnath Thukral, who is currently an important executive in Facebook, worked with this team. . . .”
6.–An ostensibly remorseful BJP politician–Prodyut Bora–highlighted the dramatic effect of Facebook and its WhatsApp subsidiary have had on India’s politics: ” . . . . In 2009, social media platforms like Facebook and WhatsApp had a marginal impact in India’s 20 big cities. By 2014, however, it had virtually replaced the traditional mass media. In 2019, it will be the most pervasive media in the country. . . .”
7.–A concise statement about the relationship between the BJP and Facebook was issued by BJP tech office Vinit Goenka: ” . . . . At one stage in our interview with [Vinit] Goenka that lasted over two hours, we asked him a pointed question: ‘Who helped whom more, Facebook or the BJP?’ He smiled and said: ‘That’s a difficult question. I wonder whether the BJP helped Facebook more than Facebook helped the BJP. You could say, we helped each other.’ . . .”

In Ukraine, as well, Facebook and the OUN/B successor organizations function symbiotically:

(Note that the Atlantic Council is dominant in the array of individuals and institutions constituting the Ukrainian fascist/Facebook cooperative effort. We have spoken about the Atlantic Council in numerous programs, including FTR #943. The organization has deep operational links to elements of U.S. intelligence, as well as the OUN/B milieu that dominates the Ukrainian diaspora.)

Overlapping cybersecurity outfit CrowdStrike, the Atlantic Council has been at the forefront of the “Russia” was behind the high-profile hacks meme:

CrowdStrike–at the epicenter of the supposed Russian hacking controversy is noteworthy. Its co-founder and chief technology officer, Dmitry Alperovitch is a senior fellow at the Atlantic Council, financed by elements that are at the foundation of fanning the flames of the New Cold War: “In this respect, it is worth noting that one of the commercial cybersecurity companies the government has relied on is Crowdstrike, which was one of the companies initially brought in by the DNC to investigate the alleged hacks. . . . Dmitri Alperovitch is also a senior fellow at the Atlantic Council. . . . The connection between [Crowdstrike co-founder and chief technology officer Dmitri] Alperovitch and the Atlantic Council has gone largely unremarked upon, but it is relevant given that the Atlantic Council—which is is funded in part by the US State Department, NATO, the governments of Latvia and Lithuania, the Ukrainian World Congress, and the Ukrainian oligarch Victor Pinchuk—has been among the loudest voices calling for a new Cold War with Russia. As I pointed out in the pages of The Nation in November, the Atlantic Council has spent the past several years producing some of the most virulent specimens of the new Cold War propaganda. . . . ”

In May of 2018, Facebook decided to effectively outsource the work of identifying propaganda and misinformation during elections to the Atlantic Council, so choosing someone like Kruk who already has the Atlantic Council’s stamp of approval is in keeping with that trend:

” . . . . Facebook is partnering with the Atlantic Council in another effort to combat election-related propaganda and misinformation from proliferating on its service. The social networking giant said Thursday that a partnership with the Washington D.C.-based think tank would help it better spot disinformation during upcoming world elections. The partnership is one of a number of steps Facebook is taking to prevent the spread of propaganda and fake news after failing to stop it from spreading on its service in the run up to the 2016 U.S. presidential election. . . .”

Since autumn 2018, Facebook has looked to hire a public policy manager for Ukraine. The job came after years of Ukrainians criticizing the platform for takedowns of its activists’ pages and the spread of [alleged] Russian disinfo targeting Kyiv. Now, it appears to have one: @Kateryna_Kruk.— Christopher Miller (@ChristopherJM) June 3, 2019

Kateryna Kruk:

1.–Is Facebook’s Public Policy Manager for Ukraine as of May of this year, according to her LinkedIn page.
2.–Worked as an analyst and TV host for the Ukrainian ‘anti-Russian propaganda’ outfit StopFake. StopFake is the creation of Irena Chalupa, who works for the Atlantic Council and the Ukrainian government and appears to be the sister of Andrea and Alexandra Chalupa.
3.–Joined the “Kremlin Watch” team at the European Values think-tank, in October of 2017.
4.–Received the Atlantic Council’s Freedom award for her communications work during the Euromaidan protests in June of 2014.
5.–Worked for OUN/B successor organization Svoboda during the Euromaidan protests. “ . . . ‘There are people who don’t support Svoboda because of some of their slogans, but they know it’s the most active political party and go to them for help, said Svoboda volunteer Kateryna Kruk. . . . ”
6.–Also has a number of articles on the Atlantic Council’s Blog. Here’s a blog post from August of 2018 where she advocates for the creation of an independent Ukrainian Orthodox Church to diminish the influence of the Russian Orthodox Church.
7.–According to her LinkedIn page has also done extensive work for the Ukrainian government. From March 2016 to January 2017 she was the Strategic Communications Manager for the Ukrainian parliament where she was responsible for social media and international communications. From January-April 2017 she was the Head of Communications at the Ministry of Health.
8.–Was not only was a volunteer for Svoboda during the 2014 Euromaidan protests, but openly celebrated on twitter the May 2014 massacre in Odessa when the far right burned dozens of protestors alive. Kruk’s twitter feed is set to private now so there isn’t public access to her old tweet, but people have screen captures of it. Here’s a tweet from Yasha Levine with a screenshot of Kruk’s May 2, 2014 tweet where she writes: “#Odessa cleaned itself from terrorists, proud for city fighting for its identity.glory to fallen heroes..” She even threw in a “glory to fallen heroes” at the end of her tweet celebrating this massacre. Keep in mind that it was month after this tweet that the Atlantic Council gave her that Freedom Award for her communications work during the protests.
9.–In 2014, . . . tweeted that a man had asked her to convince his grandson not to join the Azov Battalion, a neo-Nazi militia. “I couldn’t do it,” she said. “I thanked that boy and blessed him.” And he then traveled to Luhansk to fight pro-Russian rebels.
10.–Lionized a Nazi sniper killed in Ukraine’s civil war. In March 2018, a 19-year neo-Nazi named Andriy “Dilly” Krivich was shot and killed by a sniper. Krivich had been fighting with the fascist Ukrainian group Right Sector, and had posted photos on social media wearing Nazi German symbols. After he was killed, Kruk tweeted an homage to the teenage Nazi. (The Nazi was also lionized on Euromaidan Press’ Facebook page.)
11.–Has staunchly defended the use of the slogan “Slava Ukraini,”which was first coined and popularized by Nazi-collaborating fascists, and is now the official salute of Ukraine’s army.
12.–Has also said that the Ukrainian fascist politician Andriy Parubiy, who co-founded a neo-Nazi party before later becoming the chairman of Ukraine’s parliament the Rada, is “acting smart,” writing, “Parubiy touche.” . . . .

In the context of Facebook’s institutional level networking with fascists, it is worth noting that social media themselves have been cited as a contributing factor to right-wing domestic terrorism. ” . . . The first is stochastic terrorism: ‘The use of mass, public communication, usually against a particular individual or group, which incites or inspires acts of terrorism which are statistically probable but happen seemingly at random.’ I encountered the idea in a Friday thread from data scientist Emily Gorcenski, who used it to tie together four recent attacks. . . . .”

The program concludes with review (from FTR #1039) of the psychological warfare strategy adapted by Cambridge Analytica to the political arena. Christopher Wylie–the former head of research at Cambridge Analytica who became one of the key insider whistle-blowers about how Cambridge Analytica operated and the extent of Facebook’s knowledge about it–gave an interview to Campaign Magazine. (We dealt with Cambridge Analytica in FTR #’s 946, 1021.) Wylie recounts how, as director of research at Cambridge Analytica, his original role was to determine how the company could use the information warfare techniques used by SCL Group – Cambridge Analytica’s parent company and a defense contractor providing psy op services for the British military. Wylie’s job was to adapt the psychological warfare strategies that SCL had been using on the battlefield to the online space. As Wylie put it:

“ . . . . When you are working in information operations projects, where your target is a combatant, the autonomy or agency of your targets is not your primary consideration. It is fair game to deny and manipulate information, coerce and exploit any mental vulnerabilities a person has, and to bring out the very worst characteristics in that person because they are an enemy…But if you port that over to a democratic system, if you run campaigns designed to undermine people’s ability to make free choices and to understand what is real and not real, you are undermining democracy and treating voters in the same way as you are treating terrorists. . . . .”

Wylie also draws parallels between the psychological operations used on democratic audiences and the battlefield techniques used to be build an insurgency.


FTR #1073 Azov on Our Mind: Ukrainian Fascism Extends Its Tentacles (Return of the Prodigal “Black Sun”)

We have covered the origin, activities and expansion of the Ukrainian Nazi Azov Battalion in numerous programs. Part of the Ukrainain armed forces, this Nazi unit:

1.-Has spawned a civil militia which achieved police powers in many Ukrainian cities. “. . . . But Ukraine observers and rights groups are sounding the alarm, because this was not a typical commencement, and the men are not police officers. They are far-right ultranationalists from the Azov movement, a controversial group with a military wing that has openly accepted self-avowed neo-Nazis, and a civil and political faction that has demonstrated intolerance toward minority groups. . . .”
2.–Has as its spokesman Roman Zvarych. In the 1980’s, Zvarych was the personal secretary to Jaroslav Stetzko, the wartime head of the Nazi collaborationist government in Ukraine. Stetzko implemented Nazi ethnic cleansing in Ukraine during World War II.
3.–Wields influence with in the Ministry of the Interior through Vadim Troyan, the former deputy commander of Azov who is now deputy minister of the interior. ” . . . . The deputy minister of the Interior—which controls the National Police—is Vadim Troyan, a veteran of Azov and Patriot of Ukraine. . . .  Today, he’s deputy of the department running US-trained law enforcement in the entire nation. Earlier this month, RFE reported on National Police leadership admiring Stepan Bandera—a Nazi collaborator and Fascist whose troops participated in the Holocaust—on social media. The fact that Ukraine’s police is peppered with far-right supporters explains why neo-Nazis operate with impunity on the streets. . . .”
3.–Gets arms and training from the U.S., despite official restrictions on such activity. ” . . . . The research group Bellingcat proved that Azov had already received access to American grenade launchers, while a Daily Beast investigation showed that US trainers are unable to prevent aid from reaching white supremacists. And Azov itself had proudly posted a video of the unit welcoming NATO representatives. . . .”
4.–Is fulfilling their strategy of networking with Nazi and fascist elements abroad, including the U.S. ” . . . . FBI Special Agent Scott Bierwirth, in the criminal complaint unsealed Wednesday, noted that Right Brand Clothing’s Instagram page contained a photo of RAM members meeting with Olena Semenyaka, a leading figure within the fascist, neo-Nazi scene in Eastern Europe. In Ukraine, Semenyaka is an important voice within the Militant Zone and National Corps organizations and the Pan-European Reconquista movement, all of which have ties to the notorious Azov Battalion. Bierwirth said Azov Battalion, now a piece of the Ukrainian National Guard, is known for neo-Nazi symbolism and ideology and has participated in training and radicalizing U.S.-based white supremacist organizations. . . . .”
5.–Is networking with members of a group called RAM, some of whom were arrested by the FBI upon their return from Europe. violence.
6.–Is utilizing Ukraine’s visa-free status with the EU to network with other European fascist groups. ” . . . . ‘Their English has gotten better,’ Hrytsenko said, referring to Azov members behind the group’s Western outreach. . . . . Another thing that has helped, Hrytsenko noted, is that Ukraine’s break from Russia and move toward the European Union has allowed Ukrainians visa-free travel, making Azov’s outreach easier logistically. . . . .”
7.–Is looking to connect with more “respectable” European right-wing groups than they have in the past, this as a possible vehicle for Ukraine’s entry into the EU. ” . . . . Skillt, the Swedish national who fought as a sniper in the Azov Battalion, is one of them [critics]. ‘I don’t mind [Azov] reaching out, but the ones they reach out to… Jesus,’ he told RFE/RL, in an allusion to RAM. He added that he had recently distanced himself from Azov because of that association and others with far-right groups in Europe. Skillt, who runs a private intelligence agency in Kyiv and said his clients ‘really don’t enjoy bad company,’ argued that the group has made a mistake by not reaching out more to right-wing conservatives who could help with ‘influential contacts in Europe [so] you don’t get branded a neo-Nazi.’ But Semenyaka described praise of Azov from foreign ultranationalist groups who are increasingly welcoming it as evidence that the organization is taking the right path. And she said it isn’t about to let up. Next, she said, Azov hopes to win over larger, more mainstream far-right and populist Western political forces who ‘can be our potential sympathizers.’ ‘If crises like Brexit and the refugee problem continue, in this case, partnerships with nationalist groups in Europe can be a kind of platform for our entry into the European Union.’ . . . ”
8.–Was awarded the job of election monitoring by the Ukrainian government in their recent elections. ” . . . . They are the ultranationalist National Militia, street vigilantes with roots in the battle-tested Azov Battalion that emerged to defend Ukraine against Russia-backed separatists but was also accused of possible war crimes and neo-Nazi sympathies. Yet despite the controversy surrounding it, the National Militia was granted permission by the Central Election Commission to officially monitor Ukraine’s presidential election on March 31. . . .”

Supplementing discussion about the Azov milieu networking with foreign fascists, we note that alleged Christchurch, New Zealand, shooter Brent Tarrant had apparently networked with Azov during a visit to Ukraine:

1.–Brent Tarrant, allege Christchurch, New Zealand, Mosque shooter, had apparently visited Ukraine. ” . . . . His manifesto alludes to visits to Poland, Ukraine, Iceland and Argentina as well. . . .”
2.–Tarrant may have been a beneficiary of the aforementioned visa-free travel that EU association has for Ukraine. “. . . . Three quarters of them say the country is headed in the wrong direction, despite the fact that Ukraine has moved closer to Europe (it now has visa-free travel to the EU, for instance). . . .”
3.–Even “The New York Times” noted the possible contact between Azov and Tarrant. “. . . . The Ukrainian far right also appears to have ties in other countries. Australian Brenton Tarrant, accused of slaughtering 50 people at two mosques in the city of Christchurch in New Zealand, mentioned a visit to Ukraine in his manifesto, and some reports alleged that he had contacts with the ultra-right. The Soufan Center, a research group specializing on security, has recently alleged possible links between Tarrant and the Azov Battalion. . . .”
4.–A private intelligence group–the Soufan Center–has linked Tarrant to the Azov Battalion. ” . . . . .In the wake of the New Zealand mosque attacks, links have emerged between the shooter, Brent Tarrant, and a Ukrainian ultra-nationalist, white supremacist paramilitary organization called the Azov Battalion. Tarrant’s manifesto alleges that he visited the country during his many travels abroad, and the flak jacket that Tarrant wore during the assault featured a symbol commonly used by the Azov Battalion. . . .”

Concluding with a piece of grotesque, unintentional comedy, “The New York Times” cited the fact that Mr. Zelensky, the new Ukrainian president, is a non-practicing Jew as proof that Russian statements about Ukraine being dominated by Nazis and anti-Semites is nothing but propaganda. The fact that the Azov’s Nationa Corps militia served as election monitors was not mentioned. ” . . . . the near total silence on his Jewish background has demolished a favorite trope of Russian propaganda — that Ukraine is awash with neo-Nazis intent on creating a Slavic version of the Third Reich. . . .”


FTR #1072 Doin’ Wind Sprints with the Snake in Ukraine

We proceed from our previous program with continued reading of an article about the rise of fascism in Ukraine that details the numerous, multi-faceted examples of the capture of Ukrainian society and government by the OUN/B successor organizations elevated to power through the Maidan coup. Yet, as the article notes at the end, its many examples were just a small sampling of what has transpired in Ukraine since 2014.

We have spoken repeatedly about the Nazi tract Serpent’s Walk, in which the Third Reich goes underground, buys into the opinion-forming media and, eventually, takes over.

Hitler, the Third Reich and their actions are glorified and memorialized. The essence of the book is synopsized on the back cover:

“It assumes that Hitler’s warrior elite – the SS – didn’t give up their struggle for a White world when they lost the Second World War. Instead their survivors went underground and adopted some of their tactics of their enemies: they began building their economic muscle and buying into the opinion-forming media. A century after the war they are ready to challenge the democrats and Jews for the hearts and minds of White Americans, who have begun to have their fill of government-enforced multi-culturalism and ‘equality.'”

Something analogous is happening in Ukraine and India.

In Ukraine, fascism in being remade as a heroic bulwark against communism and Russia. In India, it is being remade as a liberating anti-colonial, anti-imperial force.

In FTR #889, we noted that Pierre Omidyar, a darling of the so-called “progressive” sector for his founding of The Intercept, was deeply involved with the financing of the ascent of both Narendra Modi’s Hindutva fascist BJP and the OUN/B successor organizations in Ukraine.

Omidyar’s anointment as an icon of investigative reporting could not be more ironic, in that journalists and critics of his fascist allies in Ukraine and India are being repressed and murdered, thereby furthering the suppression of truth in those societies. This suppression of truth feeds in to the Serpent’s Walk scenario.

The Snake is doing wind sprints in the  U.S. as well.

We have noted the photo of Baraboo, Wisconsin high school students giving the Nazi salute at their junior prom.

Now, Baraboo Ukrainian-American youth have erected statues of Ukrainian pogromist Simonon Petlura (transliterated spellings vary), along with Ukrainian Nazi leaders Roman Shukhevych and Stephan Bandera.

This is to be seen against the background of the re-institution of OUN/B fascists in Ukraine.

To provide historical and political context to the discussion, we conclude the broadcast with information supplementing previous analysis of the development of “The Christian West.” It is within the creation of The Christian West that the foundation of the present, unfortunate developments is to be found.In FTR #’s 1058, 1059, 1060, we revisited the concept of “The Christian West”: ” . . . . When it became clear that the armies of the Third Reich were going to be defeated, it opened secret negotiations with representatives from the Western Allies. Representatives on both sides belonged to the transatlantic financial and industrial fraternity that had actively supported fascism. The thrust of these negotiations was the establishment of The Christian West. Viewed by the Nazis as a vehicle for surviving military defeat, ‘The Christian West’ involved a Hitler-less Reich joining with the U.S., Britain, France and other European nations in a transatlantic, pan-European anti-Soviet alliance. In fact, The Christian West became a reality only after the cessation of hostilities. The de-Nazification of Germany was aborted. Although a few of the more obvious and obnoxious elements of Nazism were removed, Nazis were returned to power at virtually every level and in almost every capacity in the Federal Republic of Germany. . . .”

In FTR #1009, we detailed “Christian West” negotiations to have a Hitler-less Third Reich join with the Western Allies, undertaken by OSS representatives Allen Dulles and William Donovan, networking with Prince Max Egon von Hohenlohe, a proxy for SD officer Walter Schellenberg.

In in his 1985 volume American Swastika, the late author Charles Higham provides us with insight into the Christian West concept, revealing the extent to which these SS/OSS negotiations set the template for the post-World War II world, as well as the degree of resonance that key Americans, such as Allen Dulles, had with Nazi ideology, anti-Semitism in particular.

The postwar political and economic realities of the Dulles, Hohenlohe, Schellenberg meetings were further solidified when William (Wild Bill) Donovan entered into his “M” Project.

Important to note in this context, is the dominant role in world affairs played by cartels, the fundamental element in the industrial and financial axis that was essential to the creation and perpetuation of fascism. Much of the Third Reich’s military industrial complex, the primacy of Germany in the postwar EU, as well as the correlation between postwar Europe as constructed in the Christian West negotiations and long-standing German plans for European domination are derivative of the power of cartels.

The Christian West and “M” Projects:

1.–Revealed that Allen Dulles’ views resonated with Third Reich anti-Semitism, and that his opinions were shared by other, like-minded American power brokers: ” . . . . He said that it would be unbearable for any decent European to think that the Jews might return someday, and that there must be no toleration of a return of the Jewish power positions. . . . He made the curious assertion that the Americans were only continuing the war to get rid of the Jews and that there were people in America who were intending to send the Jews to Africa. . . .”
2.–Set the template for the postwar Federal Republic of Germany and the EU: ” . . . . He [Dulles] reiterated his desire for a greater European political federation–and foresaw the federal Germany that in fact took place. . . . Germany would be set up as the dominating force in industry and agriculture in continental Europe, at the heart of a continental state run by Germany, the U.S.A., and Great Britain as a focus of trade. . . .”
3.–Were the vehicle for Allen Dulles to betray much of the Allied military plans for Southern Europe to the Third Reich: “. . . . Dulles now proceeded to supply Hohenlohe with dollops of secret intelligence, announcing that the U.S. Army would not land in Spain but, after conquering Tunisia, would advance from Africa toward the Ploesti oil fields to cut off the German oil supplies. He said it was likely the Allies would land in Sicily to cut off Rommel and control Italy from there, and thus secure the advance in the Balkans. Having given virtually the entire battle plan for Europe, top secret at the time, to one of Germany’s agents, Allen Dulles proceeded to the almost unnecessary rider that he had very good relations with the Vatican. . . .”
4.–Directly foreshadowed the confrontation between the U.S. and the Soviet Union which became the Cold War.  “. . . . In other meetings, Dulles . . . . predicted that ‘the next world war would be between the U.S.A. and the Soviet Union.’ . . . .”
5.–Were the occasion for Dulles to laud the “genius” of Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels: “He . . . . described a recent speech by Dr. Goebbels as ‘a work of genius; I have rarely read a speech with such rational pleasure.’ . . . .”


FTR #1071 75th Anniversaries: Walkin’ the Snake on the Earth Island with Pierre Omidyar

We have spoken repeatedly about the Nazi tract “Serpent’s Walk,” in which the Third Reich goes underground, buys into the opinion-forming media and, eventually, takes over.

Hitler, the Third Reich and their actions are glorified and memorialized. The essence of the book is synopsized on the back cover:

“It assumes that Hitler’s warrior elite – the SS – didn’t give up their struggle for a White world when they lost the Second World War. Instead their survivors went underground and adopted some of their tactics of their enemies: they began building their economic muscle and buying into the opinion-forming media. A century after the war they are ready to challenge the democrats and Jews for the hearts and minds of White Americans, who have begun to have their fill of government-enforced multi-culturalism and ‘equality.'”

Something analogous is happening in Ukraine and India.

In Ukraine, fascism in being remade as a heroic bulwark against communism and Russia. In India, it is being remade as a liberating anti-colonial, anti-imperial force.

In FTR #889, we noted that Pierre Omidyar, a darling of the so-called “progressive” sector for his founding of The Intercept, was deeply involved with the financing of the ascent of both Narendra Modi’s Hindutva fascist BJP and the OUN/B successor organizations in Ukraine.

Omidyar’s anointment as an icon of investigative reporting could not be more ironic, in that journalists and critics of his fascist allies in Ukraine and India are being repressed and murdered, thereby furthering the suppression of truth in those societies. This suppression of truth feeds in to the “Serpent’s Walk” scenario.

In a long series dealing largely with apparent fascist elements and spooks grouped around the “socialists” on the left-wing of the Democratic Party, as well as a supplemental Food For Thought post, we hypothesized about, among other things, a marriage between the Hindutva fascism of Narendra Modi, his BJP and the RSS (the organization that murdered Mahatma Gandhi and which was modeled after Mussolini’s blackshirts) and the “Boseian” fascism of Subhas Chandra Bose.

Noting that Hitler was viewed favorably by many Indians, business students in particular, and that Mein Kampf was a best-seller in India, we have discussed Modi’s introduction of a school textbook when he governed Gujarat that glorified Hitler.

It appears that the marriage between Modi’s Hindutva fascism and “Boseian” fascism has been effected, with Modi renaming three Islands as a tribute to Bose and glorifying Bose and his Axis fighting forces in a disgusting commemorative ceremony.

Key elements of discussion and analysis include:

1.–“Prime minister Narendra Modi on Sunday announced the renaming of three islands of Andaman and Nicobar archipelago as a tribute to Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose. . . .The Ross Island was renamed as Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose Dweep, the Neil Island as Shaheed Dweep and the Havelock Island as Swaraj Dweep. . . . “‘When it comes to heroes of the freedom struggle, we take the name of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose with pride. The first prime minister of the Azad Hind government Subhash Babu had made India’s independence resolution on the soil of Andaman,’ he said.”
2.–Modi began his speech by asking the people in the ground to switch on the flashlights of their mobile phones to honour Bose.
3.–Thousands of mobile flashlights were then switched on providing a visual delight.
Donning the Azad Hind Fauj (Indian National Army) cap, he addressed a public meeting at Netaji Stadium on the occasion of the 75th anniversary of the hoisting of the Tricolour by Bose.
4.–At the stadium, the PM also released a commemorative stamp, its first-day cover and a Rs 75 coin.He also announced setting up of a deemed university named after Bose.
5.–The Andaman and Nicobar islands are not just a symbol of India’s natural beauty, but are also like a place of pilgrimage for Indians, said Modi.Modi also visited the Marina Park and hoisted a national flag on a 150-feet high mast, besides paying floral tribute at Netaji’s statue.
6.–On December 30, 1943, Bose had suggested that Andaman and Nicobar Islands be renamed as Shahid and Swaraj Dweep respectively.
7.–During World War II, the Japanese had captured the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, and Netaji came here as the Azad Hind Fauz led by him was an ally of the Japanese force.
8.–“‘The historical event of 30th December 1943 has been completed today after 75 years,’ Modi said. . . .”

The 1943 renaming of the Andaman Islands was done during the brutal Japanese occupation of that territory:

” . . . . [KR] Ganesh [the MP from the Andaman and Nicobar Islands] Ganesh pointed out to the House that the local people of the Andamans were imprisoned and tortured by the Japanese in the same Cellular Jail in Port Blair where Netaji Bose raised the flag of a free India for the first time in December 1943. [MP] Samar Guha was unaware of this, as were most other members of Parliament. He wanted to know if the atrocities by the Japanese occupation forces on the local people had taken place before or after Bose’s visit. Ganesh’s reply was, “Before, during and after.” . . . .  ‘Japanese troops acted harshly against local populations. The Japanese military police were especially feared. Food and vital necessities were confiscated by the occupiers causing widespread misery and starvation by the end of the war.’ The situation was the same in Port Blair and surrounding villages and nearby islands such as Neil Island and Havelock Island. I have come across many stories of the fear of the Kempeitai, the Japanese military police – of the arrests, the beatings, the hunger, the fear and anxiety that had gripped the people with hundreds in jail for suspicion of spying for the British. . . .”

We have repeatedly made the point that the dimensions of official lying in the West were of truly Orwellian proportions–documented World War II history was being dismissed as “Russian propaganda” or “Kremlin propaganda.” The snake is doing wind sprints in Ukraine.

Next, we begin reading and analysis of an article about the rise of fascism in Ukraine that details the numerous, multi-faceted examples of the capture of Ukrainian society and government by the OUN/B successor organizations elevated to power through the Maidan coup. (This will be continued in our next program.)

Points of analysis and discussion include:

* The elevation of the neo-Nazi Azov Battalion that was formally incorporated into Ukraine’s armed forces yet remains a neo-Nazi battalion.
* Azov is now engaged in policing with its National Druzhina street patrol units that have engaged in anti-Roma pogroms
* Azov’s campaign to turn Ukraine into an international hub of white supremacy
* Andriy Parubiy’s role in creating Ukraine’s Nazi Party that he continues to embrace and that’s routinely ignored as he has become the parliament speaker
* The deputy minister of the Interior—which controls the National Police—is a veteran of Azov, Vadim Troyan
* Government sponsorship of historical revisionism and holocaust denial though agencies like Ukrainian Institute of National Memory
* Torchlight parades are now normal
* Within several years, an entire generation will be indoctrinated to worship Holocaust perpetrators as national heroes
* Books that criticize the now-glorified WWII Nazi collaborators like Stepan Bandera are getting banned
* Public officials make threats against Ukraine’s Jewish community with no repercussions
* The neo-Nazi C14’s street patrol gangs are both responsible for anti-Roma pogroms and also the recipient of government funds to run a children’s educational camp. Last October, C14 leader Serhiy Bondar was welcomed at America House Kyiv, a center run by the US government
* It’s open season on the LGBT community and far right groups routinely attack LGBT gatherings
* Ukraine is extremely dangerous for journalists and the government has supported the doxxing and intimidation of journalist by the far right like Myrovorets group
* The government is trying to repeal laws protecting the many minority languages used in Ukraine