Estonian Intelligence Claims It Detected Network Of Russian Influence Agents, Fails To Provide Evidence

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Estonian Intelligence Claims It Detected Network Of Russian Influence Agents, Fails To Provide Evidence

Mikk Marran

Estonian intelligence claims to have detected a network of politicians, journalists, diplomats, business people who are, in fact, Russian influence agents and who are doing what they are ordered to. Voanews quoted Mikk Marran, the director general of Estonia’s Foreign Intelligence Service on July 20th.

He claims that the Estonian intelligence can clearly see they are pushing Russia’s agenda. His announcement happened at the annual Aspen Security Forum in Aspen, Colorado.

Furthermore, Marran claims that politicians that have been in the margins until a few years ago are now in national parliaments or national governments. He claims that the Russians have allegedly provided the mentioned people with media and political support.

What is noteworthy is that Marran has refused to name any politicians, diplomats or journalists suspected furthering Moscow’s agenda. This is, however, not the first time Estonia has warned of Russia’s cultivation of “influence agents” in Western Europe, however this comes at a time when there are growing concerns of such influence operations have taken root in the US.

Earlier this year, in February, Postimees posted an article warning that Russia is looking for influence agents in Estonia. They also quote Mikk Marran, who claims that Russia requires agents to influence decision-making in Europe. He highlighted that they are targeting young European politicians and foreigners travelling to Russia. The allegedly state-funded “agents of influence program,” as reported by Postimees also targets European businessmen, scientists, opinion leaders and journalists.

According to Postimees agents of influence are usually recruited on Russian soil, usually following an invitation from a local politician or businessman with ties to the Kremlin.

Marran, both now and in February has refused to provide any names or evidence or supporting facts of his claims.

It is interesting the July 20th announcement comes only a week after the Trump-Putin Helsinki meeting on July 16th. At the press conference after it, Donald Trump expressed his doubt in the US intelligence community’s assessment of Russian meddling in the 2016 elections.

July 13th’s indictment of 12 alleged Russian intelligence officials by US Special prosecutor Robert Mueller, as well as the continuing US investigation into Russiagate has only strengthened media focus and hysteria around the alleged Russian meddling. It further gives steam to the newly arisen narrative of Trump being a Russian agent, which originated after the his strongly scrutinized conduct at the Helsinki meeting and, mostly, at the Press Conference that followed. Mueller, who was appointed to investigate the Russian involvement in the 2016 elections, as well as possible collusions of members of the Trump campaign indicted the alleged intelligence officials for of hacking the computer networks belonging to the Democratic party. He has also previously indicted Trump campaign staffers, including chairman Paul Manafort and former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn. Paul Manafort, together with Rick Gates was indicted on February 22nd, 2018 on a combined 32 counts, including tax, financial and bank fraud crimes among other things. The 32 counts are in addition to the 12 counts of conspiracy, money laundering, financial and false statement charges of October 2017. Michael Flynn in December 2017 pleaded guilty for making false statements to the FBI.

Mueller’s probe, according to Voanews quoting Mikk Maran has brought greater awareness of it in the West. Despite that awareness, the Director general of Estonia’s Foreign Intelligence Service claims that his country’s Intelligence officers assert that Moscow has not weakened its efforts.

Voanews also reports that it is worrying that Russian meddling has reached the US in even larger scale than anticipated. Voanews mentions rumors that members of Congress could also be under Russian influence, which is reinforced by Bill Browder, on July 19th. He is the chief executive officer at Hermitage Capital and is the driving force behind the Magnitsky Act, which allows Washington to withhold visas and freeze financial assets of Russian officials thought to be corrupt or human rights abusers, as Voanews reports.

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  • TiredOfBsToo

    Wherever politicians seek favor with the Empire and to win elections, it’s a prerequisite to adhere to russophobia and declare all of your competitors for office as one or more of the following: Russian agents, Russian spies, foreign agents. How could anyone expect much different from the US satellite state of Estonia?

    • FlorianGeyer

      It appears that Estonia with a population of circa ‘one million three hundred thousand ‘ ( the population of a small city in the US ) is again seeking to suck on the US Dollar Teat again :)

  • SFC Steven M Barry USA RET

    Estonia… Isn’t that a penal colony of Lithuania?

    • Tudor Miron

      Or the other way around but if we talk seriously fact is that all three of those “Baltic tigers” are US colony.

  • chris chuba

    Why not just say that they also uncovered and foiled an attempted assassination and coup attempt just like the one in Montenegro? You can say anything, say the Russians did it, do not need any proof and have it recorded as fact in the western MSM.

    • FlorianGeyer

      Perhaps there will be a ‘ Novichok ‘ amateur dramatic production as well :)

      • Pave Way IV

        God, I hope not. The UK’s ‘Novichok Returns: Eau de Novichok’ follow-up production was worse than the original – embarrassingly so. MI6 has gone full retard and is acting like a little child concocting a more preposterous lie to cover up the original ridiculous one. ‘Novichok: The Estonian Affair’ probably wouldn’t even cut it as a farcical comedy/musical. Maybe if it was in 3D and you got those cardboard 3D glasses at the theater – that’s always popular.

        • You can call me Al

          I do not think it was MI6, I think it was the CIA; it has all the clues for typical Yank BS, wheras the Brits would do it a lot better….. I do however, think that we are left to cover it up.

          I agree totally with you that the 2nd or follow-up production was more like a comedy and I reckon, no I hope, we made it so shambolic, people would start to understand the US connection.

          In my view, they will be shipped to the US and suddenly find out lots of new conspiracies about Russian attacks – YAWN.

          Let’s see.

        • FlorianGeyer

          There are lots of unemployed White Helmet crisis actors looking for work now. Perhaps they will be in the next ‘ mocumentary’ about the most deadly nerve agent that man has ever developed :)

          The more senior Helmets with better acting skills will doubtless be rolled out on the corporate news platforms as ‘Experts ‘ :)

      • You can call me Al

        Was it on their door handle, restaurant, pub, street ?. Either way, 2 weeks in a hotel and they are OK.

        • VeeNarian (Yerevan)

          Every time I touch a door handle, I am reminded just what a bunch of LIARS the UK elite have become.
          Truly disgusting.

        • FlorianGeyer

          The current tenuous narratives from those VERY close to the Porton Down establishment, include that the ‘ chaotic and amateur ‘ perception of the whole Scripal affair is in fact a ‘brilliant’ operation by Russia and President Putin himself to deflect blame :)

          This what doubters of the UK fairy tales such as I am being told anyway :)

          I just smiled at the absurdity of all the UK narratives.

          • You can call me Al

            Amazing things can happen with military grade chemical weapons – maybe it has spread to the internet and everybody who is sceptical and laughing about the farce is infected => certainly seems more plausible than the crap, we believe !!, we are being told.

          • FlorianGeyer

            I used to make ‘military grade’ Airfix kits in my youth and fight battles with them :)

          • You can call me Al

            hehehe good one.

  • John Whitehot

    i hereby denounce that Mickey Mouse, Goofy and Scrooge are all russian agents trying to meddle in the internal affairs of Duckburg and Mouseton.

    the free world cannot sit idle in front of such attack on our democracies.

    • VeeNarian (Yerevan)

      This must be another “act of war” by Russia. Quack, quack, quack!!!

  • Garga

    In short, a “Russian Influence Agent” (RIA) is someone who doesn’t curse Russia, doesn’t fall for Russophobia and doesn’t blindly accept the “Russian threat™”.

    By that definition, all of us are “Russian influence agents”, even Solomon Krupacek!
    Well, maybe not him, exactly.

    • Pave Way IV

      Estonia was where Soviet military used to go to retire – the population is almost one-third Russian. I guess if you want to find a Baltic state with Russian ‘agents’ or sympathizers, Estonia would be the place. Except Russians in Estonia mostly ignore the tiny country’s politics/voting/etc.

      Bush forced Estonia through the NATO inclusion process back in 2004 when other NATO members (Germany, France, etc.) started questioning NATO support for the U.S.-led Iraqi invasion. Estonia joined NATO, sent a few troops to Iraq, and got a few hundred million from the U.S. to rebuild/expand their military bases – conveniently located right next to Russia. Some NATO members still object to Estonia’s membership because it’s so obviously provocative to Russia. And ever since Estonia became a NATO member, the U.S. has whined about the ‘threat of Russian invasion’ – as if Russia had some imaginary reason to do so. I guess that wasn’t having the desired ‘Evil Russia’ effect, so they switched it up to Russia brainwashing Estonian Russians to like Russia! Oh, the horror…

    • You can call me Al

      How did you do that blackout on the last sentence, until you rolled the curser over it ?- very impressive + incredibly cool.

      • Garga

        That’s an HTML spoiler tag (whooo, fancy!).

        There are all kinds if tags, to format text (bold, italic, underline, strikethrough), to insert links in words or text, to hide (spoiler) and so on. You can use more than one tag to create BoldItalic for example, or format the text inside spoiler.

        You put the commands between angle brackets (less than and more than). If you want your entire block of text to be affected, just use one at the start. If you want a certain part to be affected, use one at the start and one at the end, the end should have a slash too. Like this:

        Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer… (affects the entire text to the end)

        or

        Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer… (only the first two words will be affected.

        Here’s some HTML tags on the disqus help section. Search for additional tags (disqus understands other languages’ tags like java and C# too, but HTML is a sure thing) and test if they work.

        • You can call me Al

          Thank you, Garga <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<< Hover over it. Cool, Cool, Cool, bloody brilliant, thank you.

          • You can call me Al

            PS Somehow, half my text vanished after “it”…..mmmm, what have I done !!?.

  • Tudor Miron

    Poor fellas are simply begging for money. They got nothing to sell other than russofobia. Depopulation is one of main results of joining EU.

  • Smaug

    Is South Front feeling guilty?
    Seriously, though. Such lightweight espionage is more common than you might think, but the difficult bit would be proving that a pro-Russian activist was working on orders from the Russian government and given this is Eastern Europe I wouldn’t be to sure of anyone’s guilt or innocence no matter the verdict.

    • VeeNarian (Yerevan)

      Have you checked for Russians under your bed? They do seem to be everywhere. Are your sure your dog isn’t Russian? What about that evil-looking Russian cat next door?
      This bed-wetting anti-Russian RACIST hysteria must stop before the “superior and civilised” West runs out of nappies!

      • Smaug

        Ahem, but there are known incidents of espionage where information has been stolen by both sides. Given the state of politics no one sgould be surprised if tis turned out to be true, although these events are not near as extreme as the last cold war.

        It is also strange that many pro-Russian sources declare superiority and victory in one article while deploring counteractions as if against a non-existing threat. Actual Russians have a good excuse, the cybergang on this website does not.

        • VeeNarian (Yerevan)

          There have been known incidents of massive farting by our leaders. Careful you don’t suffocate downwind of these LIARS.

    • Sinbad2

      Proof, who needs proof, just follow the American example and fake the evidence.
      Maria Butina is a perfect example of the American way, ask the woman to translate, then accuse her of spying. It works in America, so why not Latvia.

  • VeeNarian (Yerevan)

    Hey Mikki boy! I am a Russian intelligence agent! Come and get me, you thick plank! Come and get me, you dotard!
    Just how stupid do they think we all are???

  • Mikronos

    If anybody knows it should be the Estonians. They’re center bull on Putin’s immediate plan to take over the hole whirled.

  • I’m sure any modern capital city has spies and agents of foreign powers, but when someone goes Full Retard and starts babbling about networks and thousands of spies, you can understand that, that person is a paranoiac, like Sultan Erdogan or Hillary.

  • quote:
    ” Estonian intelligence”
    what can of intelligence can afford a town with some countryside around it?
    Estonia has around 1.2 / 1.3 millions total population! it may have a police department but an “intelligence”…

  • Sinbad2

    There is a small area of hard core Nazis in that part of the world, Estonia Latvia, Poland and Ukraine all have pretty strong Nazi roots, and of course they hate Russians.

    During WWII the Jewish population fled to Russia for safety, today the Jewish people repay that kindness by killing Russians.