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January 30, 2023 4:27 pm

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Grief for Vladimir Putin’s deputy defence minister as nephew is killed in war

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Paratrooper commander Captain Adam Khamkhoyev has become the first relative of a senior Vladimir Putin official to die during invasion of Ukraine

Ukraine: Funeral of injured Russian Captain Adam Khamkhoyev

The nephew of Russia’s hardline deputy defence minister has been killed by Ukrainian forces in the war.

Captain Adam Khamkhoyev, 30, a paratrooper commander, was killed on Friday night in Ukraine and later buried in the southern Russian province of Ingushetia.

His uncle is Colonel-General Yunus-Bek Yevkurov, Russia’s hardline deputy defence minister is a pro- war figure in Russian President Vladimir Putin ’s Government.

Captain Khamkhoyev’s death marks the first time a senior official of Putin has suffered the loss of a close relative in his war in Ukraine.

Colonel Yevkurov flew to Karabulak to attend his nephew’s funeral.

Baza news outlet reported that he “shared his condolences, spoke to the elderlies and the religious part of the community, and then flew back to Moscow.”

Yunus-Bek Yevkurov
(
Kremlin.ru/e2w)

Khamkhoyev was a graduate of the elite Ryazan Airborne Forces school and a commander of a Russian airborne assault squadron.

His uncle, Yevkurov, was a decorated paratrooper who once won the Hero of Russia honour, the country’s highest award.

No details have been released from either Russia or Ukraine on the details of his death.

Captain Adam Khamkhoyev
(
social media/e2w)

The news comes as Russian soldier Sergeant Vadim Shishimarin, 21, was given a life sentence after being convicted of killing a 62-year-old civilian in the first war crimes trial since the invasion of Ukraine.

Putin has faced continued losses with the British Ministry of Defence saying that in three months of the war in Ukraine, Russia is likely to have suffered casualty numbers similar to those experienced by the Soviet Union during a nine-year conflict in Afghanistan.

Yevkurov is a former governor and now one of the deputies of close Putin ally Sergei Shoigu, the Russian defence minister.

He was the subject of an assassination bid in 2009.

Yunus-Bek Yevkurov, then Head of Ingushetia, meets president Vladimir Putin in 2015
(
social media/e2w)

In March in a harrowing clip, he was seen visiting a bed-bound soldier in hospital.

The serviceman had lost a leg and looked wide-eyed and scared as Yevkurov told him: “ I hope you’ll get back on your feet.”

A report in the New York Times states that the United States has provided intelligence about Russian units that have allowed Ukrainians to target and kill Putin’s generals, with the attrition rate now standing at around one colonel every two days.

Funeral of Captain Adam Khamkhoyev, killed in Ukraine
(
social media/e2w)

Pentagon spokesperson, John Kirby, said the US was providing “Ukraine with information and intelligence that they can use to defend themselves”.

But Adrienne Watson, a national security council spokesperson, said intelligence was not provided “with the intent to kill Russian generals”.

Ukrainian officials said they have killed around 12 generals on the front lines.

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Russian media report Shoigu personally visiting training grounds with the mobilised

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UKRAINSKA PRAVDA – TUESDAY, 27 SEPTEMBER 2022, 18:10 Russia’s Defence Minister, Sergey Shoigu, allegedly conducted an independent review of the training process of Russians called up from the reserve at the military training grounds of the Western Military District.

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Le colonel général Yunus-Bek Bamatgireyevich Yevkurov devrait prendre la direction du GRU – Magazine Raids

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RUS1.jpg

Le FSB qui était chargé de l’Ukraine (en matière d’espionnage, les anciennes républiques d’URSS sont du ressort du FSB et le reste du monde du SVR) n’a pas vu que la grande majorité des populations non russophones étaient hostiles à la Russie. Cela est curieux car ce fait est de notoriété publique. La résistance héroïque à l’offensive russe a donc constitué une surprise de taille pour le corps expéditionnaire russe qui pensait pouvoir prendre Kiev en quelques jours.

De son côté, le SVR a totalement sous-estimé la capacité d’union du monde occidental en général et de l’Europe en particulier. Mal informé, le Kremlin pensait que certains pays se désolidariseraient de Washington et que cette union éclaterait « façon puzzle ».

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Et enfin, le service de renseignement militaire GRU a mal évalué les capacités militaires de l’Ukraine (la défaite de la prise de l’aéroport d’Hostomel par un assaut aéroporté qui devait ouvrir les portes de la capitale a été un élément marquant de l’échec russe. Cet échec provient de la mauvaise évaluation par le GRU des forces ukrainiennes dans cette zone).

Ensuite, le GRU semble avoir été incapable de fournir des renseignements stratégiques et tactiques concernant l’Ukraine. À aucun moment le flux d’armes occidentales n’a pu être interrompu. Enfin, le GRU n’a pas vu la concentration de forces blindées-mécanisées ukrainienne dans le nord du pays qui ont permis le déclenchement de l’offensive couronnée de succès sur Karkhiv. Où sont le renseignement aérospatial, les drones de reconnaissance, les commandos spetsnaz infiltrés dans la profondeur, les agents de renseignement ?

La rumeur court que Poutine, fou-furieux, s’est retiré au début septembre dans une villa à Sotchi refusant de recevoir ses responsables militaires et du renseignement. Sa première décision semble avoir été la nomination d’un nouveau responsable à la tête du GRU : le colonel général Yunus-Bek Bamatgireyevich Yevkurov. Sa carrière militaire l’a mené sur divers théâtres d’opérations, son héroïsme lui ont valu le titre de héros de la Russie pour sa conduite au Kosovo face aux forces de l’OTAN.

Cet épisode peu connu est révélateur de l’état d’esprit des responsables politiques et militaires américains : les Russes avaient occupé par surprise l’aéroport Slatina de Pristina le 11 juin 1999. Un groupe de spetsnaz-GRU russes à la tête de cette opération avait pour chef le commandant Yunus-Bek Yevkurov. Le général américain Wesley Clark, commandant en chef des forces de l’OTAN de l’époque avait alors donné l’ordre au général britannique Mike Jackson commandant le « Corps de réaction rapide allié » (ARRC) de procéder à la prise par la force de l’aéroport. Une véritable querelle entre les deux hommes avait abouti à la réponse de Jackson à son supérieur hiérarchique (au sein de l’OTAN) Clark : « Je ne commencerai pas la Troisième Guerre Mondiale pour vous! » ». Il est à espérer que les responsables politiques et militaires soient aussi clairvoyants aujourd’hui.

De 2004 à 2008, Yevkurov a été commandant militaire adjoint à l’état-major de la région militaires Volga-Oural avant d’être nommé en 2008 comme président par intérim de la république d’Ingouchie. Il a été immédiatement confirmé à ce poste par l’Assemblée populaire d’Ingouchie pour cinq ans.

Le 22 juin 2009, il a été gravement blessé lors d’un attentat à la bombe visant son cortège présidentiel. Les auteurs étaient des terroristes islamistes. Il a quitté ses fonctions en juin 2019.

Le 8 juillet 2019, il a été nommé adjoint du Ministre de la Défense Sergueï Choïgou comme lieutenant général. Il a été promu colonel général le 8 décembre 2021.

Son neveu, le capitaine Adam Khamkhoev, qui commandait une compagnie d’assaut aéroportée est tué en Ukraine le 21 mai 2022.

Cela dit, le changement du responsable d’un service de renseignement n’a pas des résultats immédiats sur le terrain car le renseignement est une discipline de longue haleine. Par contre, la première chose qu’un nouveau chef fait en général, c’est de « couper les branches pourries ». Il devrait donc avoir un nettoyage interne en profondeur. Mais cela prendra du temps pour les remplacer.

Publié le

septembre 20, 2022

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Le colonel général Yunus-Bek Bamatgireyevich Yevkurov devrait prendre la direction du GRU – Magazine Raids – The Brookyn Times


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RUS1.jpg

Le FSB qui était chargé de l’Ukraine (en matière d’espionnage, les anciennes républiques d’URSS sont du ressort du FSB et le reste du monde du SVR) n’a pas vu que la grande majorité des populations non russophones étaient hostiles à la Russie. Cela est curieux car ce fait est de notoriété publique. La résistance héroïque à l’offensive russe a donc constitué une surprise de taille pour le corps expéditionnaire russe qui pensait pouvoir prendre Kiev en quelques jours.

De son côté, le SVR a totalement sous-estimé la capacité d’union du monde occidental en général et de l’Europe en particulier. Mal informé, le Kremlin pensait que certains pays se désolidariseraient de Washington et que cette union éclaterait « façon puzzle ».

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Et enfin, le service de renseignement militaire GRU a mal évalué les capacités militaires de l’Ukraine (la défaite de la prise de l’aéroport d’Hostomel par un assaut aéroporté qui devait ouvrir les portes de la capitale a été un élément marquant de l’échec russe. Cet échec provient de la mauvaise évaluation par le GRU des forces ukrainiennes dans cette zone).

Ensuite, le GRU semble avoir été incapable de fournir des renseignements stratégiques et tactiques concernant l’Ukraine. À aucun moment le flux d’armes occidentales n’a pu être interrompu. Enfin, le GRU n’a pas vu la concentration de forces blindées-mécanisées ukrainienne dans le nord du pays qui ont permis le déclenchement de l’offensive couronnée de succès sur Karkhiv. Où sont le renseignement aérospatial, les drones de reconnaissance, les commandos spetsnaz infiltrés dans la profondeur, les agents de renseignement ?

La rumeur court que Poutine, fou-furieux, s’est retiré au début septembre dans une villa à Sotchi refusant de recevoir ses responsables militaires et du renseignement. Sa première décision semble avoir été la nomination d’un nouveau responsable à la tête du GRU : le colonel général Yunus-Bek Bamatgireyevich Yevkurov. Sa carrière militaire l’a mené sur divers théâtres d’opérations, son héroïsme lui ont valu le titre de héros de la Russie pour sa conduite au Kosovo face aux forces de l’OTAN.

Cet épisode peu connu est révélateur de l’état d’esprit des responsables politiques et militaires américains : les Russes avaient occupé par surprise l’aéroport Slatina de Pristina le 11 juin 1999. Un groupe de spetsnaz-GRU russes à la tête de cette opération avait pour chef le commandant Yunus-Bek Yevkurov. Le général américain Wesley Clark, commandant en chef des forces de l’OTAN de l’époque avait alors donné l’ordre au général britannique Mike Jackson commandant le « Corps de réaction rapide allié » (ARRC) de procéder à la prise par la force de l’aéroport. Une véritable querelle entre les deux hommes avait abouti à la réponse de Jackson à son supérieur hiérarchique (au sein de l’OTAN) Clark : « Je ne commencerai pas la Troisième Guerre Mondiale pour vous! » ». Il est à espérer que les responsables politiques et militaires soient aussi clairvoyants aujourd’hui.

De 2004 à 2008, Yevkurov a été commandant militaire adjoint à l’état-major de la région militaires Volga-Oural avant d’être nommé en 2008 comme président par intérim de la république d’Ingouchie. Il a été immédiatement confirmé à ce poste par l’Assemblée populaire d’Ingouchie pour cinq ans.

Le 22 juin 2009, il a été gravement blessé lors d’un attentat à la bombe visant son cortège présidentiel. Les auteurs étaient des terroristes islamistes. Il a quitté ses fonctions en juin 2019.

Le 8 juillet 2019, il a été nommé adjoint du Ministre de la Défense Sergueï Choïgou comme lieutenant général. Il a été promu colonel général le 8 décembre 2021.

Son neveu, le capitaine Adam Khamkhoev, qui commandait une compagnie d’assaut aéroportée est tué en Ukraine le 21 mai 2022.

Cela dit, le changement du responsable d’un service de renseignement n’a pas des résultats immédiats sur le terrain car le renseignement est une discipline de longue haleine. Par contre, la première chose qu’un nouveau chef fait en général, c’est de « couper les branches pourries ». Il devrait donc avoir un nettoyage interne en profondeur. Mais cela prendra du temps pour les remplacer.

Publié le

septembre 20, 2022

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Spy Wars: The Hidden Foe America Must Defeat to Save Its Democracy | OZY

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  • Russian military intelligence chief Igor Kostyukov is leading Moscow’s efforts to swing the 2020 election in favor of President Trump.
  • It’s the biggest test for American democracy — and for Kostyukov, whose two immediate predecessors died in quick succession amid rumors Vladimir Putin wasn’t happy.

Angela Merkel is known for keeping her calm in difficult situations, but addressing the German Parliament in early May, the country’s chancellor appeared to briefly lose her cool. “Outrageous” is how she described the hacking of the parliament’s systems, including her own official email, by Russian agents in 2015, through a process German officials took five years to piece together.

Days later, Germany’s foreign office summoned Russian Ambassador Sergei Nachaev, and warned him that Berlin would seek European Union sanctions against both the suspected hacker and the man in charge of the agency believed to have orchestrated the operation: Russia’s military intelligence chief Igor Kostyukov.

But the successful attack on the German Parliament was merely a teaser. For Kostyukov, a navy vice admiral who has directed some of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s most ambitious and dangerous recent overseas intelligence missions at the Glavnoye razvedyvatel’noye upravleniye or GRU, the November election in the U.S. is the ultimate prize, say experts. Enabling President Donald Trump to return to power would be the biggest success of the 59-year-old’s career.

It may indicate that the Kremlin sees the current intensive confrontation … as a prelude to an inevitable conflict.

Matthew Rojansky, Wilson Center

U.S. intelligence agencies have already warned that Russia is trying to repeat its 2016 attempts to influence the election to favor Trump. On Thursday, Microsoft said Russian government hackers had targeted 200-plus people, campaigns and organizations in both parties. But the involvement of Kostyukov’s GRU — also blamed for the Russian campaign in 2016 — in the November election is particularly “revealing” with Moscow and the West locked in confrontation on multiple fronts, says Matthew Rojansky, director of the Kennan Institute at the Washington, D.C.-based Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.

“Bear in mind
that its [the GRU’s] main purpose is to support Russia’s military via
intelligence gathering and operations in times of war,” says Rojansky, an
expert on U.S.-Russia relations. “That does not necessarily suggest that Russia plans to expand or accelerate
attacks, but it may indicate that the Kremlin sees the current intensive
confrontation … as a prelude to an inevitable conflict.”

If Putin is indeed looking for someone to give him an edge in the event of a future military conflagration, the heavyset Kostyukov is the best man for the job. He led the Russian military operation in Syria that has given Moscow unprecedented control over the war-torn nation. His success in Syria drew public praise for GRU officers from Putin in 2016, with Kostyukov seated beside him. The Syria campaign earned Kostyukov the Hero of Russia medal in 2017. The GRU chief is also a central figure in Russia’s attempts to bring rebel Libyan leader Khalifa Haftar to power in Tripoli.

More recently,
Kostyukov is believed to have masterminded the attempted bounty killings of
American soldiers in Afghanistan by Taliban fighters, even as the militant
group and the U.S. were finalizing a peace agreement.

But those wartime credentials aren’t the only qualities that Putin sees in Kostyukov, suggest experts. In the Russian espionage system, the GRU has significant autonomy with a “global remit,” says Rojansky. Yet Kostyukov has repeatedly shown that he sticks to Putin’s script, says a senior Indian intelligence officer who requested anonymity. “He’s reliable, he’s proper,” says the officer, who has met Kostyukov. So proper that his salt-and-pepper hair is never out of place. He is known to lower his eyes in Putin’s presence, out of respect.

Born in the Russian Far East region of Amur, Kostyukov was earlier the GRU station chief in Rome. He is known to have a son, Oleg, who has a weakness for Italian wines. But like a good spy, Kostyukov has made sure that beyond those tiny nuggets, even the closest watchers of Russia’s intelligence agencies know little about his private life.

7th Moscow Conference on International Security: Day 2

That mystery is
part of what makes Kostyukov one of the West’s most dangerous adversaries. The
U.S. first imposed sanctions against him for Russia’s interference in the 2016
election, and added fresh ones in 2018, prohibiting any American individual or
entity from engaging with him. Last year, the European Union put Kostyukov on
its sanctions list for the 2018 chemical poisoning of double agent Sergei
Skripal and his daughter in Salisbury, U.K.

But the stakes are higher than ever in 2020 for both Kostyukov and his targets. He was deputy chief of the GRU at the time of the 2016 election interference and the Salisbury poisonings. He became top boss only in November 2018.

Compared to 2016, Russia’s online interference strategies have grown in sophistication, says Dov Levin, assistant professor of international relations at the University of Hong Kong. Its trolls are better at impersonating individuals and parties, “which makes the detection of the Russian hand much harder,” says Levin, whose book on foreign election interference, Meddling in the Ballot Box, was released this month. The GRU, he says, is also constantly creating “digital” equivalents of traditionally “analog” dirty tricks, making covert operations that used to involve agents or officials tougher to track. What if they hack traffic signal systems or electricity grids from thousands of miles away to make voting selectively harder in some pockets of the country?

America’s ability to counter Kostyukov could determine the very credibility of its democratic electoral process. But the risks are high for Kostyukov too: His two predecessors died mysteriously within a span of two years, amid rumors that Putin was unhappy with the GRU’s performance after the extent of its interference in the 2016 election and in the Salisbury poisonings became embarrassingly hard to deny.

It’s a battle he can’t afford to lose. Nor can the U.S. let him win.

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Durham’s latest ‘Russiagate’ bombshells: FBI informant Danchenko made up key parts of Steele dossier

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OPINION:

Russian-born Igor Danchenko made up sources for two of the most sensational claims in the Steele dossier––that President Donald Trump once saw prostitutes in the Moscow Ritz-Carlton and that he engaged in a “well-developed conspiracy’ with the Kremlin.

The FBI could have ended Mr. Danchenko’s Washington career in 2010 after learning he wanted to buy classified information from Obama aides and pass it to Russia, but the agency botched the probe.

When the dossier was leaked in January 2017, those two claims drove the media to label Mr. Trump an election cheater and traitor.

Days later, Democrats at a House intelligence hearing tried to get witnesses such as FBI Director James Comey to attest that Russian intelligence typically orchestrates sex in Moscow hotel rooms for blackmail. 

On Sept. 13, a new filing by prosecutor John Durham said Mr. Danchenko had zero sources for those claims which he fed to his London client, dossier author Christopher Steele. He was financed by the Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic Party. 

We also learned that Mr. Danchenko coached a previous client on how to fabricate sources in intelligence reports, advising this client to put sources in all-caps–––which Mr. Steele did in the subsequent 2016 dossier. 

Mr. Danchenko has pleaded not guilty to five charges of lying to the FBI.

Mr. Durham’s legal brief reveals how the FBI top echelon kept Mr. Trump under investigation for years while agents used the hoax dossier to pursue him

Mr. Danchenko was on the FBI payroll as a confidential human source (CHS) in March 2017 after a session lying to agents, Mr. Durham now discloses. The hiring explains why he sat down with them for repeated interviews.

What is not explained is why the FBI kept him on the payroll until October 2020 during the Trump presidency, and we do not know what Mr. Danchenko, once suspected by the U.S. of being a Russian agent said. 

But Mr. Durham supplies more nuggets. While Mr. Danchenko worked at the liberal Brookings Institution in 2008, he approached two colleagues. He asked if they would supply classified information for cash after appointments in the incoming Obama administration.

One Brookings employee went to the FBI, which opened a counter-intelligence probe and discovered Mr. Danchenko had made contact with the Russian embassy and intelligence service. 

The FBI closed the investigation, however, after mistakenly believing he left the country. 

Also unexplainable is why the FBI would continue paying the dossier’s chief source as the Democratic-financed claims collapsed before the bureau terminated him.

What Mr. Durham presents in his filing on evidence for a trial set to begin next month is that Mr. Danchenko fabricated his sources when he spoke to the FBI and Mr. Steele.

Mr. Danchenko said the “well-developed conspiracy” assessment came from a phone call with a source he believed to be Sergei Millian. Mr. Millian is a Belarus-born U.S. Citizen who ran an organization called the Russian-American Chamber of Commerce.

The Durham brief in U.S. District Court in Alexandria states that Mr. Danchenko never spoke to Mr. Millian and Mr. Millian never provided any dossier information. 

At one point, Mr. Danchenko told the FBI he spoke in July for a dossier item that appeared in June 2016.

With this sentence, Mr. Durham implies Mr. Danchenko fabricated his dossier contributions accepted by Mr. Steele:

“Put bluntly, these facts demonstrate that the defendant could not keep his lies straight, and that the defendant engaged in a concerted effort to deceive the FBI about the sourcing (or lack thereof) of the Steele Reports,” Mr. Durham states.

For the Ritz Carlton fiction, the filing says, Mr. Danchenko attributed the story to a source that fits the description of Bernd Kuhlen, the hotel’s manager. 

But Mr. Kuhlen, listed as a prosecution witness, says he never spoke to Mr. Danchenko or heard the Trump tale.

This brings us to Charles Dolan, a Hillary Clinton-connected PR contractor who worked for the Kremlin and mixed with hotel staff during a June visit to Moscow.

Mr. Dolan became a source for Mr. Danchenko whom he used to network for foreign clients. Mr. Dolan told prosecutors he had lunch with Mr. Kuhlen at the Ritz and was shown by staff the hotel’s presidential suite where Mr. Trump supposedly stayed. But Mr. Dolan says there was no talk of Mr. Trump and he will testify to that. 

The Moscow tale appeared in Mr. Steele’s first memo dated June 20, 2016, the month when Mr. Dolan and Mr. Danchenko were in Moscow. Mr. Kuhlen, the hotel manager, is “Source E,” the Durham filing says.

Mr. Danchenko told the FBI in May 2017 that “Source D” “could be referring to Sergei Millian.”

Said Mr. Durham, “In short, the Government intends to prove at trial that the defendant falsely sought to attribute the Ritz Carlton Allegations to Mr. Kuhlen.”

To show Mr. Danchenko’s pattern of devious behavior, Mr. Durham replicated an email he sent in February 2016 to another client, Sidar Global, who asked him to review a company intelligence report.  

Mr. Danchenko emailed:

“Emphasize sources. Make them bold or CAPITALISED [sic]. The more sources the better. If you lack them, use oneself as a source (“Istanbul-Washington-based businessman” or whatever) to save the situation and make it look a bit better.”

As for Mr. Millian, he left the U.S. in March 2017 after inaccurate press reports said he was Mr. Steele’s source which is what Mr. Danchenko told Mr. Steele. Mr. Millian has always denied this–––an assertion confirmed by Mr. Durham

Mr. Durham has been in a months-long effort to convince Mr. Millian to return to the U.S. to testify, but he has refused, fearing harm to his family and arrest by the FBI.

“The Government has repeatedly informed Millian that it will work to ensure his security,” Mr. Durham wrote. “Counsel for Millian would not accept service of a trial subpoena and advised that he does not know Millian’s address in order to effect service abroad.”

Rowan Scarborough is a columnist with the Washington Times.

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What FBI’s history says about its Trump investigation – The FBI has the means and drive for counterintelligence work related to the Mar-a-Lago documents. | FBI News: Objective, Balanced, Timely – 4:36 AM 9/28/2022


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