INTERNET – According to a new study, an overwhelming majority of online peace activists just want President Obama to get on with bombing Syria.
The study, conducted by the non-partisan Pew Research Center, found that 91% of internet users who identify as peace activists are increasingly impatient to condemn civilian casualties of the expected U.S. bombing campaign. All of the remaining 9% agreed that although they would rather the bombings not go ahead, they were looking forward to saying “I told you so” if the U.S. accidentally strikes a school or hospital.
“We all know Obama is going to order these strikes no matter what,” said 22 year old Tyson Jaager, an unemployed retail assistant from Ohio who runs an anti-war Tumblr account. “I’m going to make side-by-side composite photos of dead children from the alleged chemical weapon attacks and dead children from U.S. strikes. I’m just waiting for the bombs to start falling now.”
21 year old Amy Brighton, a London barista and active Guardian commenter, agreed: “I’ve written a damning petition to take back Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize. I’m ready to post it to Change.org. I just kind of feel like I need to wait for him to actually order the strikes. God, this is taking forever.”
WASHINGTON – The president of the Germany’s foreign intelligence service said Monday that his organization had wiretapped a high-level Lebanese militia member, who believed that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad had used chemical weapons. In a secret briefing to lawmakers, Gerhard Schinder, president of the Bundesnachrichtendienst, or BND – the nation’s foreign intelligence service – related what he said were the results of the wiretapping of a high-level Hezbollah member.
Lebanese militia “Hezbollah” – literally, the Party of God – is allied with the beleaguered Syrian president. Assad himself has denied the use of chemical weapons.
Matthias Gebauer writes for Der Spiegel:
“[T]he BND listened in on a conversation between a high-ranking member of the Lebanese militia Hezbollah … and the Iranian Embassy. The Hezbollah functionary, Schindler reported, seems to have admitted that poison gas was used. He said that Assad lost his nerves and made a big mistake by ordering the chemical weapons attack.”
U.N. investigator Carla Del Ponte suggested in May that the Syrian rebels fighting Assad’s government had used chemical weapons as well.
You can read more here about the German government’s wiretapping, its evidence that Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad has used chemical weapons, and the effect they both may have on the rapidly escalating war in Syria.
MOSCOW, Russia – In an unexpected turn of events on Wednesday, NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden outed a supposedly rag-tag group of Syrian rebel hackers as a sophisticated persona management project. Little has been known about the Syrian Electronic Army (SEA) since inception, but most believe them to be residing in Damascus, Syria. Aside from a few shoddily written VICE interviews and an excellent write-up from Brian Krebs, there hasn’t been much information about the inner-workings of the crew.
Today, Internet Chronicle correspondents had a chance to catch up with Snowden for a few rounds of Moscow Mules while we discussed how the Syrian Electronic Army may be, in fact, more illusory than we could have possibly imagined.
The Internet Chronicle: Did you know about the Syrian Electronic Avenue before they became mainstream?
Edward Snowden: I did. The intel passed through my data center numerous times, months before they even began to make waves with their arbitrarily chosen attacks that were, of course, dignified ex post facto.
IC: Fascinating. Do you know if they are truly Syrian freedom fighters or something else entirely?
ES: OK, from what I saw, it’s hard to tell either way. As the United States’ hands are dipped in all sorts of fucking gunk, there’s no telling what’s really going on. However, I got to see plenty of internal memorandums referencing SEA as a group of roughly six people. The company Infragard was mentioned quite a bit in the slides that I saw.
IC: Infragard? You mean the private government cybersecurity contracting firm?
ES: Correct. They came up quite a bit in our paperwork, as they tend to work closely with pretty much every government agency involved in covert operations. As do Lockheed Martin, Halliburton, and of course Booz Allen Hamilton.
IC: So what you’re saying is SEA is a creation of a private security firm contracted out by the U.S. government?
ES: From the information that I saw, that didn’t seem important at the time, but in retrospect, yes, that’s exactly what I’m saying. It’s plain to see that if you analyze the language they use, you can tell they have been trained to type in broken English, which is a common tactic deployed by the CIA, later adopted into persona management projects spearheaded by HBGary Federal in their Romas/COIN program that was uncovered by the now incarcerated journalist, the Hunter S. Thompson of our era, Barrett Brown. It really makes you think.
People don’t realize that these private contractors are truly the enemies. They’ve even forced Obama’s hand into nuking Syria and killing 5 million people, all because of the cyberwarfare via anti-rhetoric perpetuated by the SEA. Obama’s just the puppet for the masterminds at the Infragard splinter-cell persona management project. We’ve been trained to see this group as simple hacktivist merry-pranksters fighting a war against Twitter accounts and whois information. Yet, they are something far more insidious.
IC: The popular theme being thrown around these days is “the next war will be fought online.” Could this be the beginning?
ES: Absolutely. In fact, I would go so far as saying it has been going on for far longer than we even realize. Nation-state actors have been deployed via persona management firms for years now, ever since Tom Ryan Blog, aka th3j35t3r, tricked people into believing he was a porn star and got a heaps of classified information from unsuspecting troglodytes on Facebook. These types of spurious entities are really only the beginning. Imagine villages, even entire cities completely fabricated by military contractors! Think about the hacking power they would have and the ability to steer public interest. Scary shit, man.