In the murky world of intelligence, it isn’t that often that anyone has crystal clear, absolutely certain, 100 percent guaranteed advance knowledge of a forthcoming operation. But in Europe right now, there is one prediction that everyone is happy to make: In 2017, the Russian government will mount an open campaign to sway the German elections.
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Time For Truth: (The Washington Post) – Russia’s next election operation: Germany
The victory of François Fillon in France’s center-right presidential primary is the latest sign that a tectonic shift is coming to the European order: toward accommodating, rather than countering, a resurgent Russia.
Since the end of World War II, European leaders have maintained their ever-growing alliance as a bulwark against Russian power. Through decades of ups and downs in Russian-European relations, in periods of estrangement or reconciliation, their balance of power has kept the continent stable.
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Time For Truth: (The New York Times) – French Election Hints at a European Shift Toward Russia
MEPs voted overwhelmingly in support of a resolution to launch a counter-offensive to tackle what they described a new Cold War on the propaganda front.
Bureaucrats claim the Kremlin has stepped up an underhand media offensive against the EU since annexing Crimea, using a host of methods including multi-language TV station Russia Today and popular online news service Sputnik to spread negative stories and “disinformation”.
The Russian military and a main Syrian opposition group traded allegations Friday about whether new evidence indicates that either rebels or Syrian military used chemical weapons in the northern area of Aleppo where government forces are trying to regain control of areas they recently lost to insurgents.
Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov said that ministry experts have found unexploded ordnance and fragments of munitions containing chlorine and white phosphorus on Aleppo’s southwestern outskirts. Konashenkov said the discovery proves the militants have used chemical weapons against civilians and Syrian army soldiers.
Russia has successfully tested intercontinental ballistic missiles intended for its “nuclear trains” program.
Tests on missiles for the Barguzin “railway-based combat rocket system” were carried out at the Plesetsk cosmodrome two weeks ago, the state-owned Interfax news agency reports.