British Government Runs Secret Smear Campaigns

In 2015 the government of Britain launched a secret operation to insert anti-Russia propaganda into the western media stream.

We have already seen many consequences of this and similar programs which are designed to smear anyone who does not follow the anti-Russian government lines. The 'Russian collusion' smear campaign against Donald Trump based on the Steele dossier was also a largely British operation but seems to be part of a different project.

The 'Integrity Initiative' builds 'cluster' or contact groups of trusted journalists, military personal, academics and lobbyists within foreign countries. These people get alerts via social media to take action when the British center perceives a need.

On June 7 it took the the Spanish cluster only a few hours to derail the appointment of Perto Banos as the Director of the National Security Department in Spain. The cluster determined that he had a too positive view of Russia and launched a coordinated social media smear campaign (pdf) against him.


The Initiative and its operations were unveiled when someone liberated some of its documents, including its budget applications to the British Foreign Office, and posted them under the 'Anonymous' label at

The Initiative is nominally run under the (government financed) non-government-organisation The Institute For Statecraft. Its internal handbook (pdf) describes its purpose:

The Integrity Initiative was set up in autumn 2015 by The Institute for Statecraft in cooperation with the Free University of Brussels (VUB) to bring to the attention of politicians, policy-makers, opinion leaders and other interested parties the threat posed by Russia to democratic institutions in the United Kingdom, across Europe and North America.

It lists Bellingcat and the Atlantic Council as "partner organisations" and promises that:

Cluster members will be sent to educational sessions abroad to improve the technical competence of the cluster to deal with disinformation and strengthen bonds in the cluster community. [...] (Events with DFR Digital Sherlocks, Bellingcat, EuVsDisinfo, Buzzfeed, Irex, Detector Media, Stopfake, LT MOD Stratcom – add more names and propose cluster participants as you desire).

The Initiatives Orwellian slogan is 'Defending Democracy Against Disinformation'. It covers European countries, the UK, the U.S. and Canada and seems to want to expand to the Middle East.

On its About page it claims: "We are not a government body but we do work with government departments and agencies who share our aims." The now published budget plans show that more than 95% of the Initiative's funding is coming directly from the British government, NATO and the U.S. State Department. All the 'contact persons' for creating 'clusters' in foreign countries are British embassy officers. It amounts to a foreign influence campaign by the British government that hides behind a 'civil society' NGO.

The organisation is led by one Chris N. Donnelly who receives (pdf) £8,100 per month for creating the smear campaign network.

Chris Donnelly - Pic via Euromaidanpress

From its 2017/18 budget application (pdf) we learn how the Initiative works:

To counter Russian disinformation and malign influence in Europe by: expanding the knowledge base; harnessing existing expertise, and; establishing a network of networks of experts, opinion formers and policy makers, to educate national audiences in the threat and to help build national capacities to counter it.

The Initiative has a black and white view that is based on a "we are the good ones" illusion. When "we" 'educate the public' it is legitimate work. When others do similar, it its disinformation. That is of course not the reality. The Initiative's  existence itself, created to secretly manipulate the public, is proof that such a view is wrong.

If its work were as legit as it wants to be seen, why would the Foreign Office run it from behind the curtain as an NGO? The Initiative is not the only such operation. It's applications seek funding from a larger "Russian Language Strategic Communication Programme" run by the Foreign Office.

The 2017/18 budget application sought FCO funding of £480,635. It received £102,000 in co-funding from NATO and the Lithuanian Ministry of Defense. The 2018/19 budget application shows a planned spending (pdf) of £1,961,000.00. The co-sponsors this year are again NATO and the Lithuanian MoD, but also include (pdf) the U.S. State Department with £250,000 and Facebook with £100,000. The budget lays out a strong cooperation with the local military of each country. It notes that NATO is also generous in financing the local clusters.

One of the liberated papers of the Initiative is a talking points memo labeled Top 3 Deliverable for FCO (pdf):

Under top 1, setting up clusters, a subitem reads:

- Connects media with academia with policy makers with practitioners in a country to impact on policy and society: (Jelena Milic silencing pro-kremlin voices on Serbian TV)

Defending Democracy by silencing certain voices on public TV seems to be a self-contradicting concept.

Another subitem notes how the Initiative secretly influences foreign governments:

We engage only very discreetly with governments, based entirely on trusted personal contacts, specifically to ensure that they do not come to see our work as a problem, and to try to influence them gently, as befits an independent NGO operation like ours, viz;
- Germany, via the Zentrum Liberale Moderne to the Chancellor’s Office and MOD
- Netherlands, via the HCSS to the MOD
- Poland and Romania, at desk level into their MFAs via their NATO Reps
- Spain, via special advisers, into the MOD and PM’s office (NB this may change very soon with the new Government)
- Norway, via personal contacts into the MOD
- HQ NATO, via the Policy Planning Unit into the Sec Gen’s office.
We have latent contacts into other governments which we will activate as needs be as the clusters develop.

A look at the 'clusters' set up in U.S. and UK shows some prominent names.


Members of the Atlantic Council, which has a contract to censor Facebook posts, appear on several cluster lists. The UK core cluster also includes some prominent names like tax fraudster William Browder, the daft Atlantic Council shill Ben Nimmo and the neo-conservative Washington Post columnist Anne Applebaum. One person of  interest is Andrew Wood who handed the Steele 'dirty dossier' to Senator John McCain to smear Donald Trump over alleged relations with Russia. A separate subcluster of so-called journalists names Deborah Haynes, David Aaronovitch of the London Times, Neil Buckley from the FT and Jonathan Marcus of the BBC.

bigger - bigger

A 'Cluster Roundup' (pdf) from July 2018 details its activities in at least 35 countries. Another file reveals (pdf) the local partnering institutions and individuals involved in the programs.

The Initiatives Guide to Countering Russian Information (pdf) is a rather funny read. It lists the downing of flight MH 17 by a Ukranian BUK missile, the fake chemical incident in Khan Sheikhoun and the Skripal Affair as examples for "Russian disinformation". But at least two of these events, Khan Sheikun via the UK run White Helmets and the Skripal affair, are evidently products of British intelligence disinformation operations.

The probably most interesting papers of the whole stash is the 'Project Plan' laid out at pages 7-40 of the 2018 budget application v2 (pdf). Under 'Sustainability' it notes:

The programme is proposed to run until at least March 2019, to ensure that the clusters established in each country have sufficient time to take root, find funding, and demonstrate their effectiveness. FCO funding for Phase 2 will enable the activities to be expanded in scale, reach and scope. As clusters have established themselves, they have begun to access local sources of funding. But this is a slow process and harder in some countries than others. HQ NATO PDD [Public Diplomacy Division] has proved a reliable source of funding for national clusters. The ATA [Atlantic Treaty Association] promises to be the same, giving access to other pots of money within NATO and member nations. Funding from institutional and national governmental sources in the US has been delayed by internal disputes within the US government, but w.e.f. March 2018 that deadlock seems to have been resolved and funding should now flow.

The programme has begun to create a critical mass of individuals from a cross society (think tanks, academia, politics, the media, government and the military) whose work is proving to be mutually reinforcing. Creating the network of networks has given each national group local coherence, credibility and reach, as well as good international access. Together, these conditions, plus the growing awareness within governments of the need for this work, should guarantee the continuity of the work under various auspices and in various forms.

The third part of the budget application (pdf) list the various activities, their output and outcome. The budget plan includes a section that describes 'Risks' to the initiative. These include hacking of the Initiatives IT as well as:

Adverse publicity generated by Russia or by supporters of Russia in target countries, or by political and interest groups affected by the work of the programme, aimed at discrediting the programme or its participants, or to create political embarrassment.

We hope that this piece contributes to such embarrassment.

Posted by b on November 24, 2018 at 11:24 AM | Permalink


Perfidious ALbion!

When will we learn?

Posted by: Steveg | Nov 24, 2018 11:43:44 AM | 1

coincidentally, or not, i just saw this article at the guardian;

Posted by: pretzelattack | Nov 24, 2018 11:44:00 AM | 2

"political embarrassment"

Posted by: Otto | Nov 24, 2018 11:45:02 AM | 3

The British government has been running a serious meddling into the US affairs:

"The UK's Secret Intelligence Service, otherwise known as MI6, has been scrambling to prevent President Trump from publishing classified materials linked to the Russian election meddling investigation.

... much of the espionage performed on the Trump campaign was conducted on UK soil throughout 2016."

A Steele & Skrupal's anti-Russian / anti-Trump saga:

"Gregory R. Copley, editor and publisher of Defense & Foreign Affairs, posited that Sergei Skripal is the unnamed Russian intelligence source in the Steele dossier. ... In Skripal’s pseudo-country-gentleman retirement, the ex-GRU-MI6 double agent was selling custom-made “Russian intelligence”; he had fabricated “material” that went into the Steele dossier..."

For M16 to expose this level of stupidity is stunning.

Posted by: Anya | Nov 24, 2018 11:57:00 AM | 4

thanks b.... this movement in the west by gov'ts to pay for generating lies, hate and propaganda towards russia is really sick... it is perfect for the military industrial complex corporations though and they seem to be calling the shots in the west, much more so then the voice of the ordinary person who is not interested in war.. i guess the idea is to get the ordinary people to think in terms of hating another country based on lies and that this would be a good thing... it is very sad what uk / usa leadership in the past century has come down to here.... i can only hope that info releases like this will hasten it's demise...

Posted by: james | Nov 24, 2018 11:58:02 AM | 5

Seems to me that this shows the primacy of the City of London, with its offshore network of illicit capital accumulation, within Britain. It is a state within a state or even a financial empire within a state, which, for deep historical reasons isn't subject to the same laws as the rest of the UK. The UK's pathological obsession with Russia only males sense to me as the city's insistence on continued 90s style appropriation of Russia's wealth

Posted by: Ingrian | Nov 24, 2018 12:03:55 PM | 6

@6 ingrian... things didn't go as planned for the expropriation of russia after the fall of the soviet union.. it seems the west is still hurting from not being able to exploit russia fully, as they'd intended...

Posted by: james | Nov 24, 2018 12:15:31 PM | 7

an old book should be read written in the 1930s
it is called
the empire of the city of london
full of illumination a 1000 points of light and all that

it is my belief that young folks can even read that old book on the interweb

Posted by: sam | Nov 24, 2018 12:19:36 PM | 8

Let the Doxx wars begin! Sure, Anonymous is not Russian but it will surely now be targeted and smeared as such which would show that it has hit a nerve. British hypocrisy publicly called out. How this all unravels is one to watch. Extra large popcorn and soda for me.

I think we've all noticed the euro-asslantic press (and friends) on behalf of, willingly and in cooperation with the British intelligence et al 'calling out' numerous Russians as G(R)U/spies/whatever for a while now yet providing less than a shred of credible evidence.

It seems to me that the UK has far more to lose from doxxing than Russia does. The interference in sovereign allied states to 'manage' who the UK thinks they should appoint does not bod well for such relations.

Meanwhile in Brussels they are having their cake and eating it, i.e. bemoaning Europe's 'weak response' to Russian propaganda:

BTW, did anyone read Wired UK's current advertorial (nov 14) by Carl Miller for Brigade 77?

Posted by: et Al | Nov 24, 2018 12:20:09 PM | 9

"A separate subcluster of so-called journalists names Deborah Haynes, David Aaronovitch of the London Times and Neil Buckley from the FT." Subcluster. Love it. Just how crap do you have to be to fail to make it to membership of a full cluster of smear merchants?

Posted by: Forthestate | Nov 24, 2018 12:26:09 PM | 10

Yet another example of the pot calling the kettle black when in fact the kettle may not be black at all; it's just the pot making up things. "These Russian criminals are using propaganda to show (truths) like the fact the DNC and Clinton campaigns colluded to prevent Sanders from being nominated, so we need to establish a clandestine propaganda network to establish that the Russians are running propaganda!"

Posted by: worldblee | Nov 24, 2018 12:33:05 PM | 11

snark on
But, but, but they are doing God's work so its ok....God of Mammon
snark off

Great journalism b

@ Forthstate with "....full cluster of smear merchants".

May all the clusters of smear merchants be exposed to the public as the acolytes of evil they are.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Nov 24, 2018 12:34:32 PM | 12

"In 2015 the government of Britain launched a secret operation to insert anti-Russia propaganda into the western media stream."

I doubt very seriously that the British launched this operation without the CIA's implicit and explicit support. This has all the markings of a John Brennan operation that has been launched stealthily to prevent anyone from knowing its real origins.

The Brits don't act alone, and a project of this magnitude did not begin without Langley's explicit approval.

Now check out the wording in the above document:

"Funding from institutional and national governmental sources in the US has been delayed by internal disputes within the US government, but w.e.f. March 2018 that deadlock seems to have been resolved and funding should now flow."

Think about that.

What would have blocked the flow of USG support for this project??

Why, the allegations of collusion against Trump, of course. Naturally, the Republicans are not going to provide money to an operation that threatens to destroy the head of their own party. So, there has been no bipartisan agreement on funding for anti-Russia propaganda

BUT...the author assures us that the "deadlock seems to have been resolved and funding should now flow"


In other words, the fix is in. Mueller will pardon Trump on collusion charges but the propaganda campaign against Russia will continue...with the full support of both parties.

I could be wrong, but that's how I see it...

Posted by: plantman | Nov 24, 2018 12:36:48 PM | 13

This mob was created in the autumn of 2015, according to their site. That would have been about the time -- probably just after -- the Russians intervened in Syria. The Brits had plans for an invasion of Syria in 2009, according to their fave Guardian fish wrap. A lot of sour grapes with this so-called 'integrity initiative', IMO. BP was behind a lot of this, I would also think. When Assad pulled the plug on the pipeline through the Levant in 2009, the Brits hacked up a fur ball. It's gone downhill for them ever since. Couldn't happen to a nicer lot. If you can't invade or beat them with proxies, you can at least call them names.

Posted by: m | Nov 24, 2018 12:40:07 PM | 14


Pat Lang posted a report that strongly implies that charges of Russian influence on Trump are a deliberate falsification: THE CHIMERA OF DONALD TRUMP, RUSSIAN MONEY LAUNDERER:

If Trump was taking dirty money or engaged in criminal activity with Russians then he was doing it with Felix Sater, who was under the control of the FBI... And who was in charge of the FBI during all of the time that Sater was a signed up FBI snitch? You got it—Robert Mueller (2001 thru 2013) ...

It seems quite possible that what is alleged as "Russian meddling" is actually CIA-MI6 meddling, including:

Steele dossier
To create suspicion in government, media, and later the public

Leaking of DNC emails to Wikileaks (but calling it a "hack")
To help with election of Trump and link Wikileaks (as agent) to Russian election meddling

Cambridge Analytica
To provide necessary reasoning for Trump's (certain) win of the electoral college.

Note: We later found that dozens of firms had undue access to Facebook data. Why did the campaign turn to a British firm instead of an American firm? Well, it had to be a British firm if MI6 was running the (supposed) Facebook targeting for CIA.

As I have said before, MAGA is a POLICY RESPONSE to the challenge from Russia and China. The election of a Republican faux populist was necessary and Trump, despite his many flaws, was the best candidate for the job.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Nov 24, 2018 12:40:58 PM | 15

@13 plantman.. those are good observations.. thanks..

@15 jr.. the article is by someone named ''larry''..pat agreed to post it.. i also thought it was a good read..

Posted by: james | Nov 24, 2018 12:45:16 PM | 16

The Integrity Initiative's goal is to defend democracy against the truth about Russia.

All this is so Orwellian. When will we get the Ministry of Love?

Posted by: Cyril | Nov 24, 2018 1:10:13 PM | 17

Posted by: james | Nov 24, 2018 12:15:31 PM | 7

"things didn't go as planned for the expropriation of russia after the fall of the soviet union.. it seems the west is still hurting from not being able to exploit russia fully, as they'd intended..."

They shot at an elephant and failed to kill it.

So yes, out of the combo of frustration, resentment, and fear they hate the resurgent Russia and prefer Cold War II, and if necessary WWIII, to peaceful co-existence. Of course the usual corporate imperative (in this case weapons profiteering) reinforces the mass psychological pathology among the elites.

The ironic thing is that Putin doesn't prefer to challenge the neoliberal globalist "order" at all, but would happily see Russia take a prominent place within it. It's the US and its UK poodle who are insisting on confrontation.

Posted by: Russ | Nov 24, 2018 1:16:21 PM | 18

Great article! It reminded me of what I read in George Orwell's novella "1984." He summed it all up brilliantly in nine words: "War is Peace"; "Freedom is Slavery"; "Ignorance is Strength." The three pillars of political power.

Posted by: GeorgeV | Nov 24, 2018 1:34:08 PM | 19

Since UK has always blocked the "European Intelligence" initiative, on the basis of his pertenence to the "Five Eyes", and as UK is leaving the European Union, where it has always been the Troy Horse of the US, one would think that all these people belonging to the so called "clusters" should register themselves as "foreign agents" working for UK government...and in this context, new empowerished sovereign governemts into the EU should consider the possibility expelling these traitors as spies of the UK....

Some of the "clusters" unmasked here....some, like Ignacio Torreblanca in Spain, are related to the CFR....

Posted by: Sasha | Nov 24, 2018 1:38:39 PM | 20

Country list of agents of influence according to the leak:

Harold Elletson ,Klaus NaumannWolf-Ruediger Bengs, Ex Amb Killian, Gebhardt v Moltke, Roland Freudenstein, Hubertus Hoffmann, Bertil Wenger, Beate Wedekind, Klaus Wittmann, Florian Schmidt, Norris v Schirach

Sweden, Norway, Finland
Martin Kragh , Jardar Ostbo, Chris Prebensen, Kate Hansen Bundt, Tor Bukkvoll, Henning-Andre Sogaard, Kristen Ven Bruusgard, Henrik O Breitenbauch, Niels Poulsen, Jeppe Plenge, Claus Mathiesen, Katri Pynnoniemi, Ian Robertson, Pauli Jarvenpaa, Andras Racz

Dr Sijbren de Jong, Ida Eklund-Lindwall, Yevhen Fedchenko, Rianne Siebenga, Jerry Sullivan, Hunter B Treseder, Chris Quick

Posted by: Zanon | Nov 24, 2018 2:12:45 PM | 21

Nico de Pedro, Ricardo Blanco Tarno, Eduardo Serra Rexach, Dionisio Urteaga Todo, Dimitri Barua, Fernando Valenzuela Marzo, Marta Garcia, Abraham Sanz, Fernando Maura, Jose Ignacio Sanchez Amor, Jesus Ramon-Laca Clausen, Frances Ghiles, Carmen Claudin, Nika Prislan, Luis Simon, Charles Powell, Mira Milosevich, Daniel Iriarte, Anna Bosch, Mira Milosevich-Juaristi, Tito, Frances Ghiles, Borja Lasheras, Jordi Bacaria, Alvaro Imbernon-Sainz, Nacho Samor

US, Canada
Mary Ellen Connell, Anders Aslund, Elizabeth Braw, Paul Goble, David Ziegler
Evelyn Farkas, Glen Howard, Stephen Blank, Ian Brzezinski, Thomas Mahnken, John Nevado, Robert Nurick, Jeff McCausland
Todd Leventhal

Chris Donnelly
Amalyah Hart William Browder John Ardis
Roderick Collins, Patrick Mileham Deborah Haynes
Dan Lafayeedney Chris Hernon Mungo Melvin
Rob Dover Julian Moore Agnes Josa David Aaronovitch Stephen Dalziel Raheem Shapi Ben Nimmo
Robert Hall Alexander Hoare Steve Jermy Dominic Kennedy
Victor Madeira Ed Lucas Dr David Ryall
Graham Geale Steve Tatham Natalie Nougayrede
Alan Riley Anne Applebaum Neil Logan Brown James Wilson Primavera Quantrill
Bruce Jones David Clark Charles Dick
Ahmed Dassu Sir Adam Thompson Lorna Fitzsimons Neil Buckley Richard Titley Euan Grant
Alastair Aitken Yusuf Desai Bobo Lo Duncan Allen Chris Bell
Peter Mason John Lough Catherine Crozier
Robin Ashcroft Johanna Moehring Vadim Kleiner David Fields Alistair Wood Ben Robinson Drew Foxall Alex Finnen
Orsyia Lutsevych Charlie Hatton Vladimir Ashurkov
Giles Harris Ben Bradshaw
Chris Scheurweghs James Nixey
Charlie Hornick Baiba Braze J Lindley-French
Craig Oliphant Paul Kitching Nick Childs Celia Szusterman
James Sherr Alan Parfitt Alzbeta Chmelarova Keir Giles
Andy Pryce Zach Harkenrider
Kadri Liik Arron Rahaman David Nicholas Igor Sutyagin Rob Sandford Maya Parmar Andrew Wood Richard Slack Ellie Scarnell
Nick Smith Asta Skaigiryte Ian Bond Joanna Szostek Gintaras Stonys Nina Jancowicz
Nick Washer Ian Williams Joe Green Carl Miller Adrian Bradshaw
Clement Daudy Jeremy Blackham Gabriel Daudy Andrew Lucy Stafford Diane Allen Alexandros Papaioannou
Paddy Nicoll

Posted by: Zanon | Nov 24, 2018 2:13:28 PM | 22

Thank you very much for going through all the files, b. Will share far and wide

Posted by: cresty | Nov 24, 2018 2:18:30 PM | 23

I see that the cluster of UK journalists to receive propaganda from the Integrity Initiative includes Guardian writer and former Le Monde chief editor (run out by her senior editors for her "Putinesque" leadership style) Natalie Nougayrede. As if The Guardian needs any more persuasion or encouragement to recede deeper into its labyrinthine network of rabbit-holes. Jonathan Freedland must be jumping up and down in an infantile tantrum that Nugget-head got such privileged access.

Posted by: Jen | Nov 24, 2018 2:25:43 PM | 24

Agents of influence in Italy according to the leak:

Fabrizio Luciolli Vittorfranco Pisano Jason Wiseman Beppe Severigni Jacopo Iacoboni Alvise Armellini

Posted by: Zanon | Nov 24, 2018 2:30:45 PM | 25

@ #2 pretzelattack Thanks for the Robert Mueller Guardian article link.

Am I the only one not to know that "As acting deputy attorney general, he [Robert Mueller] was in charge of the investigation and indictment of Abdelbaset al-Megrahi, the Libyan convicted of the terrorist attack that brought down Pan Am flight 103 over Lockerbie in Scotland just before Christmas 1988.

Seems every new article I read on Robert Mueller, he was carrying out another CIA covert plan.

The Framing of al-Megrahi by Gareth Peirce London Review of Books 24 Sept 2019

Posted by: erichwwk | Nov 24, 2018 2:32:15 PM | 26

Britain has been a US dog for years, most overtly in Blair's time over Iraq and Afghanistan, but things haven't really changed. Britain's military has become more and more dependent on the US. There is no longer an independent nuclear deterrent - the weapons are rented from the US, and I'm certain that they couldn't be used without US approval (sure to be a backdoor somewhere in the electronics which would enable the US to turn them off, if the US disagreed). The F35s they've insisted on buying are probably in the same situation.

They're not slaves, or rather 'vassals' - the current word of sensitivity about the EU. More active collaborators, which implies initiatives also stemming from Britain.

One should also recall Britain's function as US agent in the European Union. They were opposed to many EU proposals, obviously to fit in with US desires. The most recent example is the Galileo GPS system - they were opposed to it for years, but as Ivan Rogers told us (former Brit ambassador to the EU), the opposition he was instructed to make failed.

It's all gone off a bit recently though. Trump is not interested in Britain in the way Obama was. Brexit is a nativist movement, not what America wants. If Brexit goes through finally, the interest of the US will be even less, as we can no longer intervene on the US's behalf in Europe.

Posted by: Laguerre | Nov 24, 2018 2:32:37 PM | 27

French agents of inluence according to leak:
Francoise Thom Jusin Vaisse Thomas Bertin Caroline Gondaud Guillaume Schlumberger Raphael de Lagarde Roland Galharague
Martin Briens Jean-Christophe Noel Laurent Rucker Alexandre Escorcia Nikola Guljevatej David Behar Claire le Flecher Remy Bouallegue Paul Zajac Nicolas Roche Manuel Lafont Rapnouil Laurent Rucker Patrick Hardouin Etienne de Durand
Janaina Herrera

Posted by: Zanon | Nov 24, 2018 2:35:35 PM | 28

I just knew if I scrolled down far enough the name Anne Applebaum would appear - Queen of the Dual-Loyalists; but Wm. Browder!?

From her Wikipedia page: "She is a visiting Professor of Practice at the London School of Economics, where she runs Arena, a project on propaganda and disinformation." I reckon she "Practices" at the Post.

Posted by: Bart Hansen | Nov 24, 2018 2:41:35 PM | 29

Of course none of this will be reported in the "real" news outlets.

Posted by: steve | Nov 24, 2018 2:43:03 PM | 30

@7 "...things didn't go as planned for the expropriation of russia after the fall of the soviet union.. it seems the west is still hurting from not being able to exploit russia fully, as they'd intended..."

Crimea is the one that really hurts. NATO was all set to build a shiny new base.

Posted by: dh | Nov 24, 2018 2:43:03 PM | 31

@18 russ... yes - that pretty well sums it up... as for putin falling into the neoliberal order - at this point it does look that way.. i am curious how russia could move forward at this moment in some alternative way? what would the alternative way look like?

@zanon... thanks, but the list given for usa/canada has only one person on it that appears to be a canuck - glen howard.. and unless it is a different glen howard, the guy is some curling wiz, but no mention of his anti-russian credentials... his e mail address is given as which is connected to the jamestown foundation.. turns out, he is not a canuck either - "Glen Howard President

Mr. Howard is fluent in Russian and proficient in Azerbaijani and Arabic, and is a regional expert on the Caucasus and Central Asia. He was formerly an Analyst at the Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) Strategic Assessment Center. His articles have appeared in The Wall Street Journal, the Central Asia-Caucasus Analyst, and Jane’s Defense Weekly. Mr. Howard has served as a consultant to private sector and governmental agencies, including the U.S. Department of Defense, the National Intelligence Council and major oil companies operating in Central Asia and the Middle East."

one of the people on the usa-can list - john nevado appears to be an equadorian...

bottom line - as a sensitive canuck, i think someone needs to change the list to say usa and remove canada, as no canucks are on the list from the small research i did...

that is the sad thing about canada - it gets lumped in with the usa for good and bad on a regular basis... maybe they could put crystia freelands name on this list... i think she would qualify as a rabid anti-russia canuck...

Posted by: james | Nov 24, 2018 2:50:46 PM | 32

@31 dh.. i think you are right about that.. annie applepants is still aching over that... her and crystia freeland..

Posted by: james | Nov 24, 2018 2:51:44 PM | 33

reply to Plantman 13
"Funding from institutional and national governmental sources in the US has been delayed by internal disputes within the US government, but w.e.f. March 2018 that deadlock seems to have been resolved and funding should now flow."
I don't think it was the Republican party that was the source of the deadlock.
I think it may have been Tillerson. He had close ties to Russia and in March 2018, he was forced out of State and Pompeo came in.
"President Donald Trump nominated Pompeo as Secretary of State in March 2018, with Pompeo succeeding Rex Tillerson after his dismissal."

Posted by: frances | Nov 24, 2018 2:55:24 PM | 34

"The organisation is led by one Chris N. Donnelly who receives (pdf) £8,100 per month ..."

That's a decent salary. He probably can work from home too - like Bellingcat. A fake NGO operating with fake "integrity" to identify "fake news". Everything is rather upside-down these days. Good to have all those names attached. Where's C Summers on the list? - maybe he never realized till now the monthly salaries available.

Posted by: jayc | Nov 24, 2018 3:00:23 PM | 35

Russian disinformation is much less important than the work of the GRU which has been active in western elections and stirring up trouble in the Balkans and Ukraine. It's clear that Russian disinformation and lies were exposed by the indictment by Mueller of the Internet Research Agency. Russia is playing a divisive role on the western debate over immigration, refugees, foreign policy (NATO) etc., but the GRU has been doing the real damage.

The GRU was exposed hacking the campaign headquarters of France and the US turning the emails over to WikiLeaks in an attempt to elect Le Pen and Trump, respectively. GRU agents were identified on CCTV in the attempt to murder the Skripals. Both GRU agents were identified by Bellingcat. Bellingcat identified a second GRU agent in a failed attempt in a 2016 coup in Montenegro ( The motive was preventing Montenegro from joining NATO (thus proving its necessity). Both GRU agents in the Montenegro coup attempt are currently wanted by Interpol. According to Bellingcat, their "....findings directly contradict Kremlin’s statements that “Popov” was an innocent Russian tourist unjustly accused by a hostile foreign government....". This was the same alibi attempted by the Russian government before the two suspects in the attempted assassination of Skripal were identified as GRU agents.

The GRU continues to be active in the Balkans according to the Intercept ( by @mazmhussain):

".......As part of a broader program of support for illiberal forces in Europe, Russian President Vladimir Putin has also emerged as a patron of Dodik. With Russian assistance, the police forces of Republika Srpska have undertaken an ominous program of militarization, with weapons and training provided by Russian advisers.Russian-owned state media outlets have also been accused of spreading sectarian propaganda in the country, adding to a febrile climate of ethnic tension and atrocity denial that Dodik has been glad to capitalize on......."

Paul Goble adds ( 

".......Suljagic.......said that “the Kremlin wants to begin a conflict ‘in the Ukrainian style’ in Bosnia-Herzegovina” and to that end has been training police and paramilitary groups from the [Republika Srpska within Bosnia-Herzegovina] in Russia and providing them with weapons........"

The GRU have also been recently exposed in attempts to infiltrate the OPCW and and a US nuclear energy company ( via @thedailybeast):

"......The Department of Justice revealed that the GRU targeted U.S. and international sports anti-doping agencies in cyberattacks, as well a U.S. nuclear energy company that supplied fuel to Ukraine, leading to charges of hacking, wire fraud, identity theft, and money laundering.

The Netherlands named four Russian military intelligence officers in a failed April cyberattack on the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW)—the group responsible for investigating the Sergei Skripal poisoning and a Russia-linked chemical attack in Syria........"

While the GRU has seemed more like the Keystone cops than the percieved well oiled intelligence agency, they still can count as successful helping to elect Trump (whether it can be proven or not). Their work in the Balkans continues in a program of destabilization.

Posted by: craigsummers | Nov 24, 2018 3:01:25 PM | 36

And people that works in those clusters? Do they sleep all night? I think of them as cruisaders. They have been swallowing propaganda for more than 2 generations. This cureemt state of affairs cannot last longer. Right?

Posted by: PacoRepublicano | Nov 24, 2018 3:02:15 PM | 37

What I love about this whole saga was the insertion of a fanzine created on 4Chan. The stuff about the prozzies, the pee, Obama's bed was pure 4Chan, initially created to harass a Nevertrumper. It shows just how inept MI6, GCHQ and the CIA are, allowing their own prejudices to lead them into a wonderfully embarrassing situation. No matter how great their 'reach' as shown by this document dump, they chose to include the most preposterous nonsense in what was supposed to be serious research, and they paid a fortune for it.

Posted by: kula | Nov 24, 2018 3:05:50 PM | 38

Agents from:

Central Europe
Anne Bader Eduard Abrahayman Mitar Kuyundzic Plamen Pantev Solomon Passy Jaroslav Hajecek Jakub Janda Frantisek Vrabel Peter Kreko Jan Strzelecki Mario Nicolini
Harold Elletson Susan Stewart

Posted by: Zanon | Nov 24, 2018 3:21:34 PM | 39