Dedicated Russian thread

What the Russians and the Chinese seem to be after is a short range high speed cruise missile strike capability that will knock out the US before it can even get its defences on line, and that they can then weather a limited counter attack from.
Thus ensuring that the US will be unable to establish an effective defence before launching a first strike of their own.
 

Slime

LE
It seems some here think missiles that have a hypersonic aspect are game changers.

What is amusing is that Russia keep saying hypersonic glide vehicles can’t be countered.........oops, sorry, they say Russian hypersonic glide vehicles can’t be countered. :)
 
It seems some here think missiles that have a hypersonic aspect are game changers.

What is amusing is that Russia keep saying hypersonic glide vehicles can’t be countered.........oops, sorry, they say Russian hypersonic glide vehicles can’t be countered. :)
But these will be super special hypersonic missiles made from the finest stolen technology and coated in Vlads boyfriends super hypersonic pubes.
 
The point about First strike is that technically anyone can throw the first punch with what they have today.

The point of mutual assured destruction MAD was to ensure that the victim, however hard hit, had enough to throw back to ensure mutual extinction.

Defensive technology has long lacked the ability to knock out a load of ballistic hypersonic MIRV warheads dropping out of low orbit but that attack is relatively slow.

What the Russians and the Chinese seem to be after is a short range high speed cruise missile strike capability that will knock out the US before it can even get its defences on line, and that they can then weather a limited counter attack from.
Your final paragraph does not logically follow from your previous ones.

I should point first though that there is more than just hyper-sonic missiles involved in the new weapons, there are also things like intercontinental nuclear torpedoes and others. I will just simplify the description as "advanced nuclear delivery systems", or "advanced missiles" in referring to all systems designed to evade defences.

Let's deal with MAD first. If neither party has an effective defence system, then there is MAD. If one or both parties have an effective defence system, then there is no MAD.

Where advanced missiles come into the equation is that they render a defence system less effective. That preserves or restores MAD.

Since during the Cold War both sides were content with MAD, the "ABM Treaty" of the late 20th century was intended to prevent a debilitating and destabilising arms race. If one side were to develop and deploy an effective missile defence, they might be tempted to conduct a first strike before the other side could develop and deploy an equivalent.

Conversely, if one side were to see a situation arise in which the other side were to develop and deploy an effective missile defence system, then they would be well aware of the above. Given that situation they may feel compelled to launch a nuclear attack before their window of retaliation closed. In other words, the logic of nuclear weapons would push them to get their retaliation in first while they still had the chance.

Due to the above, an effective missile defence was seen as inherently destabilizing and creating a high probability of leading to nuclear war. Thus both sides agreed to give up on having effective strategic ABM systems, except for a token number.

Nuclear logic is that for the world to survive we either need MAD between a few powers, or preferably, no nuclear weapons at all. The latter approach was also agreed upon, and the core principle of the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty was that the US, USSR (with Russia as successor state), China, Britain, and France would all completely dismantle all of their nuclear weapons, and no other signatories would build any. So far the nuclear weapons states have failed to fulfil their obligation under the treaty to disarm, but that's another issue.


To come to the present day, it is very unlikely that a nuclear war would start without following a period of rising international tensions. In those circumstances we could expect the US to have their defence system (assuming they manage to build one that actually works for a change) at full readiness before the world reached a stage in which nuclear weapons were used. This is especially the case as we can expect that these defence systems could be very rapidly brought from rest to full alert. Thus, it is difficult to see a situation in which a country with an effective defence system could be caught with their guard down.

However, let's assume that the Russians attack anyway even though they know the hypothetical American defence system is active. With any defence system that is imaginable today, the numbers just don't work against a country with a weapon inventory the size of Russia's. Even a system that was phenomenally effective (e.g. 95%) in terms of stopping missiles would be ineffective in practice when you consider how many thousands of warheads there are and how many would get through and how much destruction each one would cause.

The only way that the sort of system that the Americans wish to deploy would make any sense is against a country with a small number of nuclear weapons, such as China, Britain, France, Israel, India, etc. (add to the list as needed). Or it would make sense against Russia if the US were to launch a first strike which destroyed most of Russia's nuclear weapons (along with much of the Russian population as collateral damage).

Now if the Russians were to respond to this threat by building their own missile defence system, that would create an even more unstable situation as both sides would now be in a position to launch a first strike and believe they could "win".

Instead they are building what they believe are advanced missile systems that would render the American missile defence system infective, restoring MAD. The Russians are happy with the status quo, and want to preserve it.


If the Americans really wanted to cut the legs out from under the Russians, they would push for the terms of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty to be fulfilled and for all nuclear states to completely disarm in terms of nuclear weapons and the ability to make them. The Americans would then have a massive military advantage over the Russians, which the Russians could never surmount given the prevailing demographics and economics.

The Americans won't do this however, because Europe is no longer the centre of the world and Russia is more of an annoyance than a major concern. China is what the Americans are focused on, and China have a comparatively small nuclear arsenal. Were the Americans to develop an effective missile defence system however, then the Chinese will be compelled to build large numbers of advanced missiles in order to maintain MAD parity. This will of course send the Americans ballistic over their plans going awry, and we have plenty of scope in that for WWIII.

However for the Russians, regardless of what the main focus of the Americans is, they have to maintain parity if they want to be a player at the top table, and for this they need MAD in order to maintain freedom of action and to avoid being "regime changed" by the Americans.
 
Dr. Strangelove, anyone?
 
Looks like Russia has lost patience with its failing puppet in Belarus, and wants to prep his replacement.
I've seen a couple of items that consider this is a ruse on Lukashenko's part. Who knows?

E2A: I like how in this article they not only had a tip off, but the mercenaries were fingered by not looking like typical Russian tourists by not drinking and being dressed in camo gear. Not very low key to slip below the radar and blend in if they were indeed in Belarus to cause trouble.

 
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On their way to sunnier climes, perchance?
 
Not receiving much air-time with western or Russian media outlets. How long before people start having accidents and falling out of windows?

'Russian politics has always been made in the capitals. Even though the country spans 11 time zones from Eastern Europe to northeast Asia, St. Petersburg and Moscow were the starting points of the three Russian revolutions in the early 20th century — as well as the fourth at the end of it. In August 1991, some remote regions learned about the start of the attempted coup d’état in Moscow only after it had already been defeated.

'In the 21st century, this capital-centrism no longer seems to hold true. Whatever the reasons — the nature of modern communications surely being chief among them — Russian politics is becoming truly national.

'For the past three weeks, the focus of political attention has shifted 3,800 miles from Moscow to the city of Khabarovsk in the Far East, where residents have staged unprecedented protests over the sudden firing of their elected governor.

'Khabarovsk has been a thorn in the government’s side since September 2018, when the Kremlin-backed incumbent lost the gubernatorial election in a landslide. His victorious opponent (who beat him by 70 percent to 28 percent) happened to be a lawmaker from the Kremlin-friendly nationalist (and misnamed) Liberal Democratic Party by the name of Sergei Furgal. But this almost didn’t matter. As in many recent elections in Russia — most spectacularly in last year’s legislative polls in Moscow — pro-Kremlin candidates are losing to whomever else is listed on the ballot, even when genuine opposition leaders are barred from running (as they usually are). The point was that residents of Khabarovsk elected their own governor, in opposition to the one installed from the Kremlin. The individual and his political affiliations were secondary.

'One immediate consequence of the Khabarovsk protests has been a realization that state control of television, ensured in the early years of Vladimir Putin’s rule, is no longer as important as it once was. Despite the absence of coverage on national TV, a Levada Center survey released last week showed that 83 percent of Russians are aware of the rallies in Khabarovsk — and 45 percent support them. (Only 17 percent are against.) Moreover, about a third of Russians say they would take part in similar protests in their own regions.

'Indeed, the Kremlin may leave them no choice. For years, Putin’s regime has maintained its power through a combination of propaganda, economic incentives and repression. With many Russians now getting their news online, propaganda has become less effective, while falling oil prices and the economic fallout from the pandemic have reduced the incentives — leaving only repression in the Kremlin’s toolbox. But this has its limits, too, as was shown by the police inaction in Khabarovsk.'


 
The Russians were up to it again, hacking and stealing gov't docs, (and before KGB resident pipes up, allegedly) this time from Liam Fox.


Given what's been going on about internet security and the lessons he should have learnt from what happened with H Clinton and other, he seemingly used his private email account, rather than a more secure gov't one. In another article I read, it stated that the passwords were handed over. If this is true, it does make you wonder at how gormless some people are given the nature of information they're handling.

Yeah, I know we can all be susceptible to scams, but you'd think if you're in government you'd be more aware of this and the security required.
 
Not receiving much air-time with western or Russian media outlets. How long before people start having accidents and falling out of windows?

'Russian politics has always been made in the capitals. Even though the country spans 11 time zones from Eastern Europe to northeast Asia, St. Petersburg and Moscow were the starting points of the three Russian revolutions in the early 20th century — as well as the fourth at the end of it. In August 1991, some remote regions learned about the start of the attempted coup d’état in Moscow only after it had already been defeated.

'In the 21st century, this capital-centrism no longer seems to hold true. Whatever the reasons — the nature of modern communications surely being chief among them — Russian politics is becoming truly national.

'For the past three weeks, the focus of political attention has shifted 3,800 miles from Moscow to the city of Khabarovsk in the Far East, where residents have staged unprecedented protests over the sudden firing of their elected governor.

'Khabarovsk has been a thorn in the government’s side since September 2018, when the Kremlin-backed incumbent lost the gubernatorial election in a landslide. His victorious opponent (who beat him by 70 percent to 28 percent) happened to be a lawmaker from the Kremlin-friendly nationalist (and misnamed) Liberal Democratic Party by the name of Sergei Furgal. But this almost didn’t matter. As in many recent elections in Russia — most spectacularly in last year’s legislative polls in Moscow — pro-Kremlin candidates are losing to whomever else is listed on the ballot, even when genuine opposition leaders are barred from running (as they usually are). The point was that residents of Khabarovsk elected their own governor, in opposition to the one installed from the Kremlin. The individual and his political affiliations were secondary.

'One immediate consequence of the Khabarovsk protests has been a realization that state control of television, ensured in the early years of Vladimir Putin’s rule, is no longer as important as it once was. Despite the absence of coverage on national TV, a Levada Center survey released last week showed that 83 percent of Russians are aware of the rallies in Khabarovsk — and 45 percent support them. (Only 17 percent are against.) Moreover, about a third of Russians say they would take part in similar protests in their own regions.

'Indeed, the Kremlin may leave them no choice. For years, Putin’s regime has maintained its power through a combination of propaganda, economic incentives and repression. With many Russians now getting their news online, propaganda has become less effective, while falling oil prices and the economic fallout from the pandemic have reduced the incentives — leaving only repression in the Kremlin’s toolbox. But this has its limits, too, as was shown by the police inaction in Khabarovsk.'


With respect to the Khabarovsk protests "not receiving much air-time with western or Russian media outlets", look at the reaction that @KGB_resident has been getting to posting about it on this thread. He's being told that it doesn't matter, that he's bringing it up to try to divert attention from other issues, etc. It may be nothing or it may be the start of the most significant events in Russia since the fall of the Soviet Union. Either way it doesn't fit the preconceived Western agenda being pushed by some so it gets ignored. The idea that what the important issues are in Russia will be the ones decided by the Russian people instead of by the West just isn't acceptable to some people.

Russia will change as it does from time to time. We may not like whatever the change turns out to be and it may not be changing just now, but they will change and probably for their own reasons. When it does happen it will come as a great surprise to many people in the West because they were on perma-send instead of listening.
 
Crashing in flames near you in a few years time...


On the other hand, taking bladdered Ivans out of the equation, perhaps their overall safety record might improve? As if it could get any worse.
 
City authorities estimated around 3,500 people had taken part in the march. Some local media put the number above 10,000, but said the crowds were smaller than previous weeks.
The marches have been mentioned in western media and appear to be losing momentum. LDPR appear to have an understanding with UR (United Russia) and pretty much vote along the same lines. They appear to be neither liberal or democratic in outlook.

They're also a tad more open on their wish for Russia's 'natural borders' (the Caucasus, Belarus and Ukraine) to be re-established than UR. Other than that ...............

Zhirinovsky (leader of the LDPR) does appear to be in favour of free tattoos of himself though:

The most striking thing about the protests is that they have been allowed to continue and clearly govt approval (more than one protester) hasn't been sought, yet the authorities haven't clamped down on them .... yet. I would assume Putin just wants them to fizzle out, lose momentum etc. Having seen what stepping in to prevent protests leads to in neighbouring countries.

Should the LDPR gain power in Russia, pretty much the same, albeit undoubtedly something to please the masses just after election. A bit like Claudius and the invasion of Britannia.
 
Crashing in flames near you in a few years time...


On the other hand, taking bladdered Ivans out of the equation, perhaps their overall safety record might improve? As if it could get any worse.
On the other hand, what a grand excuse to whail Hacking when one crashes exactly on a Putin designated target.
 
With respect to the Khabarovsk protests "not receiving much air-time with western or Russian media outlets", look at the reaction that @KGB_resident has been getting to posting about it on this thread. He's being told that it doesn't matter, that he's bringing it up to try to divert attention from other issues, etc. It may be nothing or it may be the start of the most significant events in Russia since the fall of the Soviet Union. Either way it doesn't fit the preconceived Western agenda being pushed by some so it gets ignored. The idea that what the important issues are in Russia will be the ones decided by the Russian people instead of by the West just isn't acceptable to some people.

Russia will change as it does from time to time. We may not like whatever the change turns out to be and it may not be changing just now, but they will change and probably for their own reasons. When it does happen it will come as a great surprise to many people in the West because they were on perma-send instead of listening.
Kite-flying, wishful thinking or a real possibility?

'Suppose you ordered a crackdown and nobody came? The continuing protests in the Russian city of Khabarovsk, triggered by the arrest of the elected local governor, do not simply demonstrate pent-up dissatisfaction toward Vladimir Putin’s regime—they also demonstrate some of the potential limitations of its control over the security forces. As the Kremlin seems to be pivoting toward a renewed campaign of repression, the question of the morale and loyalty of its enforcers becomes crucial.

'Thousands of protesters have turned out every weekend since July 9, when the Khabarovsk region’s governor, Sergei Furgal, was arrested on 15-year-old murder-conspiracy charges. This is less about Furgal himself so much as a widespread local discontent about a government they feel only notices the territories outside Moscow’s MKAD beltway when it is time to tax them.

'What has been particularly striking, though, has been that although none of the protests have been authorized, the local police have not tried to control them. This weekend, six protesters out of maybe 10,000 were detained: Two protesters were sentenced to a week behind bars, two were fined 10,000 rubles ($134) each, and two more were held overnight then cut loose. Compared with how protests elsewhere in Russia have been handled, this was positively benign.

'It is not as if Khabarovsk lacks for security forces. Along with its regular police, it has an OMON riot police unit, a SOBR SWAT team, an Independent National Guard Motorized Battalion and Interior Troop Brigade, and the 21st “Typhoon” Special Designation Commando Detachment.

'As if that were not enough, as a key city along the Chinese border, the army’s Eastern Military District is headquartered there, and there is also a regional headquarters of the Federal Security Service (FSB).

'Yet the police have not just done little to prevent the protests; they have also escorted the marches and fraternized with demonstrators who chanted “thank you, police” after officers handed out face masks. Even the fearsome National Guard have left them be, demonstrating what one observer said was obvious sympathy for them.

'The latest demonstration also coincided with the annual holiday of the VDV, Russia’s paratroopers. Veterans of wars in Chechnya, Georgia, and Syria, waving flags and sporting their distinctive blue-and-white striped shirts, joined the march.

'Meanwhile, the investigators of the Prosecutor General’s Office, the Investigative Committee, and the FSB may be compiling reports for the day they are unleashed, but so far they have been noticeably quiet. Indeed, when claims surfaced in Moscow that the protests were instigated by professional malcontents from outside the city, maybe even prompted by the United States, local prosecutors gave off-the-record briefings denying them.

'In part, it is simply that no one has any appetite for a showdown so long as the protests are—largely—confined to a single city and still have local opinion on their side. The Kremlin can afford to wait and simply suppress any mention of Khabarovsk in the mass media.'


Full article - Putin’s Security Forces Are Increasingly Unsure About Putin
 



The NSA and FBI have published a 45 page report (link to fact sheet) on the GRU (aka GU) exposing what they've called a sophisticated Russian hacking tool. Known as ' Drovorub' it's apparently to break into Linux-based computers. According to the fact sheet, run by the 85th Main Special Service Center (GTsSS) and is sometimes publicly associated with APT28, Fancy Bear, Strontium etc.
“Linux systems are used pervasively throughout National Security Systems, the Department of Defense, and the Defense Industrial Base - as well as the larger cybersecurity community writ large,” Keppel Wood, chief operations officer in the NSA’s Cybersecurity Directorate, told Reuters. “The malware has the potential to have a widespread impact if network defenders don’t take action against it.”
“Drovorub is a ‘Swiss Army knife’ of capabilities that allows the attacker to perform many different functions, such as stealing files and remote-controlling the victim’s computer,” said Steve Grobman, chief technology officer for cybersecurity company McAfee.
...............
“NSA is sharing this information to counter the capabilities of the GRU GTsSS, which continues to threaten the United States and its allies,” said the NSA’s Wood.
 



The NSA and FBI have published a 45 page report (link to fact sheet) on the GRU (aka GU) exposing what they've called a sophisticated Russian hacking tool. Known as ' Drovorub' it's apparently to break into Linux-based computers. According to the fact sheet, run by the 85th Main Special Service Center (GTsSS) and is sometimes publicly associated with APT28, Fancy Bear, Strontium etc.
And what is the problem? Russian and American labs are developing software to spy against each other. It is not forbidden by any international treaty. So what one could expect - that Russia unilaterally stop such an activity? It would be illogical step.
 
And what is the problem? Russian and American labs are developing software to spy against each other. It is not forbidden by any international treaty. So what one could expect - that Russia unilaterally stop such an activity? It would be illogical step.
It’s a warning. That your ‘crooks and thieves’ have a new tool on the books aimed at Linux based computers.

We all know what ‘Fancy Bear’ et al have done around the world, including WADA (noting Russia has now paid the doping fine), to attacks in The Hague etc.

I don’t see a problem with them sending out a warning. Do you?
 
It’s a warning. That your ‘crooks and thieves’ have a new tool on the books aimed at Linux based computers.

We all know what ‘Fancy Bear’ et al have done around the world, including WADA (noting Russia has now paid the doping fine), to attacks in The Hague etc.

I don’t see a problem with them sending out a warning. Do you?
Remarkably, Washington hasn't claimed that American labs never developed this sort software. If it is a problem then for Washington it would be logical to propose - we, the Americans and our allies will not develop such malware. Let's sing an agreement about global prohibition.
 
Demonstrations and meetings in support of jailed governor Furgal continue in the city of Khabarovsk. It is 5th week of permanent protests frequently with anti-Putin slogans.
Today 15 August it looks this way.

1597472298877.png
 

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