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Old 12-01-2008   #21
Stan
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Default "how far to walk back the cat," Inside the NATO breach

We're really reaching this time with all the makings of a catastrophic failure

Quote:
Much of what NATO does is secret; it must be since it holds all of the military strategy and tactics of the Pentagon and our 25 allies. But this belief fell apart this month when Estonia, the tiny country on the Baltic Sea with just more than a million people, announced that two top government officials, a husband and wife team, had betrayed NATO's most intimate secrets to Russia.

The result: Russia, which always rejected NATO, has found that a detour through Estonia was the perfect way to stab into the heart of NATO.
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Old 12-02-2008   #22
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Default Odd article, in many respects,

but its bottom line is clear enough:

Quote:
.... Can we trust and, even more important, can we afford the NATO alliance?

In 2009, do we need NATO? After all, as one top intelligence official in Washington said, "It must be assumed that the Russian intelligence service still has a few more Simms in the alliance."
Who has the most to gain from all this ? Is this a little wilderness of mirrors ?
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Old 12-02-2008   #23
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Default Not odd, just not very intelligent.

He presumes that any information applicable to the US defense establishment is automatically available to anyone in NATO. That's not correct, nor is 'most' or 'a lot' correct -- very little and low order at that would be correct. There are other dumb statements as well...
Quote:
Regardless, the case will lead to far-reaching consequences for our newly elected president. Can we trust and, even more important, can we afford the NATO alliance?
Far reaching consequences? Beyond doubtful. You can't trust anyone -- and we know that, have done so for many years. As for affordability, this is not the first nor will it be the last time US classified info has been leaked by a NATO Ally; NATO has some political merit so affording it is not really an issue.
Quote:
In 2009, do we need NATO? After all, as one top intelligence official in Washington said, "It must be assumed that the Russian intelligence service still has a few more Simms in the alliance."
Doh. Well, of course they do -- the FSB /GRU is easily the worlds most effective intel service collaborative. That statement doesn't pass the 'so-what' test.
Quote:
Dateline D.C. is written by a Washington-based British journalist and political observer.
A British journalist who says "...our newly elected president..." arouses my suspicion. A 'political observer' commenting on intel matters arouses my chuckle factor.

Yes, it is a mass of smoke and mirrors.
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Old 12-02-2008   #24
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Default Let's get real

I did a lot of work with partner intel services in the "new democracies". They are great folks, but there was never any doubt that their former partners probably left some friends behind. That's why we have tiered access.

At the same time it's unfair to single out our allies and partners when some of the most egregious damage was done here in the States -- Ames, Hanson, Walker.

Disband NATO over an intel leak? I don't think so.
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Old 12-02-2008   #25
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discredit or disband NATO? Who would want that....?
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Old 12-02-2008   #26
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Default Odd Bedfellows

As Ken noted, the identity of the Dateline D.C. writer is hidden and quite possibly a legend:

Quote:
(from article)
Dateline D.C. is written by a Washington-based British journalist and political observer.
So, Anons as the sources for the article; and Anon as its author.

Quote:
The Tribune-Review Publishing Company is owned by heir to the Mellon banking, oil, and aluminum fortune, Richard Mellon Scaife.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pittsburgh_Tribune-Review

Not to claim any kind of conspriracy or whatnot - or to allege that RMS signed off on this particular article.

The Anon columnist writes regularly (about weekly) - article index is here -

and this is not his (her) first on intelligence - one from this year is here.

Quote:
Restoring intelligence
By Dateline D.C.
Sunday, August 10, 2008

WASHINGTON -- Coincidences happen surprisingly often.

At the end of July, political legend Anne Armstrong died in Texas. Among her many firsts:

• Armstrong served in the Cabinets of three presidents as the first female presidential counselor

• As U.S. ambassador to London, appointed by President Gerald Ford in 1975

• As a member and chairwoman of President Ronald Reagan's Foreign Intelligence Board (1982-1990).

A recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, Armstrong held many secrets and was equally ferocious in the defense of her country, friends and freedom. She will be sorely missed.

Also as July ended, President George W. Bush signed a new executive order governing the competing bureaucracies of the 16 information-gathering groups under National Intelligence Director Mike McConnell.
.... [lengthy discussion]
and here.

Quote:
Philip Agee, traitor
By Dateline D.C.
Sunday, January 20, 2008

WASHINGTON
A failed American, Philip Burnett Franklin Agee, 72, "Pont" to the KGB for nearly four decades, is dead in Cuba, his spiritual home. He was a traitor, paid by the Cubans and Russians.

For much of his life, this irresponsible financial sponge and a sad excuse for a case officer betrayed the CIA, his friends and those who worked to protect the United States.

In the 1970s, Agee and his friends made headlines. They did their best, helped by the KGB, to harm the United States and its policies. ....
Sounds like an American to me.

"Who would want" - Multiple choices (everyone can fill in their own favorites), who are not necessarily on the same page and each possibly on their own separate page.
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Old 12-02-2008   #27
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And NATO is stymied by Herman Simm's mega wealth

Quote:
While every intelligence agency has grown, there are now more civilian contractors than the entire civil work force and even the penetration of hostile countries' intelligence is outsourced to giant corporations.

About 70 percent of the $60 billion a year spent on foreign and domestic intelligence goes to companies such as Blackwater Worldwide, DynCorp, SAIC, CACI International and the doyen of them all, Booz Allen Hamilton.
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Old 12-25-2008   #28
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Mr. Kahar said Mr. Simm lacked access to critical streams of information
Quote:
... including plans for a NATO cyber defense center based in Estonia, the identity of Estonian and foreign intelligence agents and details about plans for missile defense systems in Poland and the Czech Republic.

A congenial man — the kind who never forgot to bring flowers when women in the office had a birthday — Mr. Simm was among the few officials who survived Estonia’s transition to independence. A graduate of a Soviet police academy in Moscow, Mr. Simm was in his 40s when Estonia left the Soviet Union, noticeably older than most of his government counterparts.
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Old 12-25-2008   #29
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Default Hei Stan,

you scooped me by 20+ minutes. Good work, C4 man.

This case keeps getter odder and odder. It is fast morphing into something we have seen before - passing off "info" to allies.

I got a kick out of this, from the NY Times article:

Quote:
Aleksei Pavlov, a Kremlin spokesman, dismissed the notion that Russia was stepping up spying and said Mr. Simm “never had any connection with any type of Russian government agency.” He added that domestic considerations, including terrorism, were the priority for Russia now.

“It is not exactly the case where we will be activating our international network,” he said.
Pavlov is of course telling the truth since the SovCom-Russian network was never deactivated.
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Old 01-31-2009   #30
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Default Simm update, which seems a collage ....

of media reports, is found here.

Quote:
18.01.200912:08 (GMT) - 007 News

Estonian newspaper Eesti Paevaleht, referring to data of the special parliamentary commission on supervision of activity of security services of Estonia, writes that the spy Herman Simm who was exposed in 2008 had worked for the Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR) of Russia. He transferred secret data through a certain SVR officer with a nickname of Jesus.

According to the newspaper, during the investigation of Simm’s criminal case it was found out that the citizen of Estonia was supervised by an illegal who used cover as a citizen of Portugal and operated carrying out the SVR tasks.

It is said in the annual report on activity of the special parliamentary commission. According to the commission, Jesus was declared in the international search still on September 16, 2008, that is before arrest of Herman Simm and his spouse Heete Simm on September 21, Russian news agency Interfax reports.

Simm’s official duties included organization and coordination of protection of state secrets, participation in the international negotiations with the NATO and EU member-countries on protection of the classified information. So, he was a member of NATO and EU delegations on check-up of conformity of security systems in other countries.

Simm had the same access to confidential materials as the President, the Prime Minister, Ministers of Defence and Minister of Foreign Affairs, and the Commander of the Defence Forces of Estonia. According to mass media, NATO considers the Simm’s case the biggest intelligence failure after the USSR collapse.

Earlier it was the French press which reported on the agent nicknamed Jesus. According to magazine Le Nouvel Observateur, all the files with the index NATO Cosmic Top Secret, addressed to Estonia, passed through Simm and therefrom they got to Jesus. In particular, all documents of military character which were sent to Estonia from the countries with which it concluded treaties on exchange of classified documents were passed through Simm.

According to a NATO expert, the damage caused to Estonia and the alliance is huge; according to preliminary data, the damage could make about 100 million EEK (6.4 million Euro).
I Googled about (without success) to find the Eesti Paevaleht article, and the report of the special parliamentary commission. Stan, can you help out on this - i.e., did the report actually say what is asserted in the first three paragraphs quoted above.

Also, there are a number of alleged facts claimed in the quote; at least one of which has been disputed. E.g., this:

Quote:
Simm had the same access to confidential materials as the President, the Prime Minister, Ministers of Defence and Minister of Foreign Affairs, and the Commander of the Defence Forces of Estonia.
Contra, Kahar quote in article cited in Stan's 25 Dec post above.

An indictment was projected for post-1 Jan - still waiting on that one.
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Old 02-01-2009   #31
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Hei JMM,
Had merely gotten bored with this case in the local press and should have otherwise kept up with this thread. BTW, Google in Estonskie don't friggin work

Quote:
Originally Posted by jmm99 View Post
I Googled about (without success) to find the Eesti Paevaleht article, and the report of the special parliamentary commission. Stan, can you help out on this - i.e., did the report actually say what is asserted in the first three paragraphs quoted above.

Also, there are a number of alleged facts claimed in the quote; at least one of which has been disputed. E.g., this:

Contra, Kahar quote in article cited in Stan's 25 Dec post above.

An indictment was projected for post-1 Jan - still waiting on that one.
Here in brief and chronological order, is what I came up with from EestiPäevaleht:


25 DEC 08

The Kremlin's representative Aleksei Pavlovi states that they are more occupied with internal problems and terrorism, and, have nothing to do with Simm. With that, Estonia's Special Commission Chairman Jaanus Rahumägi retorts that this part of the world (during that period) has always been in Russia's sights, and the prosecution believes that Simm passed information onto the Russian foreign spies.

29 DEC 08

Simm's Defense Lawyer hopes to get his land back. In attorney Sven Sillari's opinion, Simm's assets were confiscated illegally. Chief Prosecutor Lavly Lepp indicated in early November that the confiscation of Simm's property legally fell under two categories. The real estate in question was purchased with criminally-obtained monies or the individuals through criminal acts have considerably benefited from the consequential damages.

30 DEC 08
The Simms' land remains confiscated. Tallinn's district Court ruled that the Simms' confiscated assets remain legally confiscated and added that, assets belonging to Heete Simm could also be confiscated if she is found guilty of assisting her husband with treason.

12 JAN 09

Heete Simm, accused of assisting her husband with treason returned to work on Monday as a legal attorney for the police. Not much to this short article other than mucho legal jargon.

16 JAN 09
KAPO (similar to the USA's FBI, ATF, SWAT and Secret Service all rolled into One) Commission - Simm's contact was a Russian Officer
The (Parliamentary) Estonian Security Police Board Commission determined last year that Simm's contact was in fact a Federation foreign spy, who escaped (from being apprehended) just 3 days before Simm was arrested. In brief, the Commission determined that Simm's contact is in fact a third party illegal traveler (alien) and they are now at odds just how to proceed convicting Simm. Under Estonian law Simm could received 3 to 20 years, or life. Other Countries cited indicate that Simm, as a traitor, could receive the maximum such as in France, Finland, Sweden, Germany and Denmark. In the USA there's a possible penalty of death and in Russia, 12 to 20 years.


20 JAN 09

The Parliament of Estonia
(Don't for a second think that clicking on the ENG would instantaneously translate the viewed document into English... Because it does not )

In short (complete with sarcasm)
Heete Simm is found free these days... But what a surprise-surprise.

Sorry, I was unable to find anything that would indicate Simm had access to the same level of classified as say the President. I however doubt he had that level, ever.

Regards, Stan
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Last edited by Stan; 02-01-2009 at 03:33 PM.
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Old 02-01-2009   #32
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Default Stan, kiitos paljon

for the extensive update. No real breaking news - and many questions remain unanswered. If this case is settled (plea bargain), I suspect that many of those questions will remain buried.

Meanwhile, we have our own continuing problem, where the apple seems not to have fallen far from the tree.

The 27 Jan 2009 Nicholson indictment is here.

Last edited by jmm99; 02-01-2009 at 08:20 PM.
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Old 02-10-2009   #33
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Default Simm trial - possibly in March

This appeared in a few places:

Quote:
Estonian In Russia Spy Probe On Trial By March: Official
Wednesday February 4th, 2009 / 15h44

TALLINN, Estonia (AFP)--A former Estonian defense ministry official who is accused of spying for the country's Soviet-era master Moscow is set to face trial within weeks, justice authorities said Wednesday.

"The case will reach court in a few weeks, in March at the latest," Gerrit Maesalu, spokesman of the state prosecutor's office, told AFP.
.....
The defense ministry said Wednesday that it was also planning to seek 21 million kroons ($1.72 million) in damages against Simm.
"The sum was calculated by taking into account the amount the defense ministry has had to pay to change the various communication and guard systems of various institutions," spokesman Peeter Kuimet told AFP.
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Old 02-10-2009   #34
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This is the part that always gets me

Quote:
After Simm's arrest, Estonian Prime Minister Andrus Ansip said other NATO member states which may have been damaged by his alleged espionage could also press charges.
Maesalu (sic), however, said prosecutors did not have any further information about such plans by Tallinn's allies.
The purported NATO team has yet to come up with anything that would shake the roof off Estonia's NATO membership. I love the way a journalist gets paid to ponder evidence that has yet to materialize.

I've truly missed my calling to make money using little more than innuendo and personal opinion (and you do still recall what we say about opinions and Alphas... Right?).

Regards, Stan

EDIT:
As I happen to know these fine folks, I will see just exactly what all this cash will suddenly replace to prevent more Hermans from selling (ahem) highly classified info to the Russkies.

Quote:
The defense ministry said Wednesday that it was also planning to seek 21 million kroons ($1.72 million) in damages against Simm.
"The sum was calculated by taking into account the amount the defense ministry has had to pay to change the various communication and guard systems of various institutions," spokesman Peeter Kuimet told AFP.
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Last edited by Stan; 02-10-2009 at 09:42 PM.
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Old 02-27-2009   #35
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Quote:
A spy scandal in Estonia

How many more?
Feb 26th 2009 | TALLINN
From The Economist print edition

A senior Russian spy in NATO is convicted
http://www.economist.com/world/europ...ry_id=13184989
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Old 02-27-2009   #36
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Default Hei, K,

thank you for the update.

Now that Mr. Simm has pleaded guilty, the question will remain (as it always does in these cases) about why he did what he did. Some will ask why he was not caught sooner - and the answer there is that there is no single profile for a spy-traitor. There are many profiles (developed after the fact) and they are common not only to spies-traitors, but to those who are not.
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Old 03-02-2009   #37
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Default Shorwaves, One-time Pads, classic espionage devices?

Is there any further evidence so far that the radio device Mr. Simm was using, was receiving Shortwave radio broadcasts? Further, have there been any reports of one time pads, or message decryption devices, keys, or codes?

Thanks for the forum, this is great!
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Old 03-02-2009   #38
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Default Please introduce yourself ....

either in this thread or here - web developer and an interest in films tells us not much. Thank you in advance.
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Old 03-03-2009   #39
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Default More information.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jmm99 View Post
either in this thread or here - web developer and an interest in films tells us not much. Thank you in advance.
I'm sorry, I'll be more verbose. Through Climenole, LLC I'm working on a film about the history of Numbers Stations. Beginning with Bletchley Park in 1940, it tells this history using instances where an individual is charged with treason and the evidence brought against them is, among other things, shortwave radios and One-Time Pads. The sum of which points to Numbers Stations.

The spies prominently featured are: Vilyam Genrikhovich Fisher (Rudolph Ivanovich Abel), Adolf Tolkachev, Geoffrey Prime, Vaklav Jelinek (Edwin Van Harleem), and Ana Belen Montes.

Montes was discovered in 2001 and sentenced in 2002. Being that it is 2009 and we are near completion of the project, we'd like to be able to include a reference to someone who has been caught recently using Shortwave Radios and One-Time Pads. Bring it up to date basically.

I stumbled upon your forum because of the mention of the radio in Mr. Simm's quarters. I thought if anyone would know if he was using Shortwave Radios and One-Time Pads, it would be the people of this forum. So any thoughts?

Now that it's in the open, if you are interested in more about our film project, it is called Clandestine. visit http://clandestine-movie.com

Thanks for any help you can provide!

Last edited by marcus.climenole; 03-03-2009 at 04:35 AM. Reason: clarity
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Old 03-03-2009   #40
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Default Thank you for the full disclosure ...

Quote:
from m.c
I thought if anyone would know if he was using Shortwave Radios and One-Time Pads, it would be the people of this forum. So any thoughts?
My immediate thought is that the Simm case is so recent that anything detailed about his sources and methods would be classified. Possibly his guilty plea "proffer" (if Estonia uses that sort of document) would give some details. I haven't seen anything beyond the open-source material posted here.

Based on one of the news articles I read, Simm was discovered because the Checkist officer or agent running him had tried to recruit an official from another government. The official reported the contact and the Checkist was surveilled. That led to his meetings with Simm being observed, etc., etc.

The inference is that Simm was transmitting information person to person - also perhaps by dead-drops. If what was reported was true, discovery of Simm was something of a windfall realized because another official obeyed the rules and reported an illicit contact.

PS: You do have an interesting project - sometimes fact is more interesting than fiction, but more often is simply boring.

Last edited by jmm99; 03-03-2009 at 07:43 PM. Reason: add PS
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