In May 2018 the Ukrainian secret security service SBU faked the murder of the Russian ‘journalist’ Arkady Babchenko in Kiev for very questionable reasons. The murder had first been blamed on Russia.
The SBU claimed that by faking the murder they would uncover a real Russian murderer which made no sense.
It later turned out that the whole thing was part of a corporate raid:
The staged murder, with a fake cadaver, a fake killer and a fake operator behind it, was endorsed (video) at the highest levels of the Ukrainian government.
“Western” media used the hoax to accuse and defame Russia and its president Putin without the slightest supporting evidence. That alone is already a serious mess and reveals the utter failure of “western” journalism and media.
The background of the case, a takeover of a company by illegal means, demonstrates the total social failure of the “western” coup in Ukraine. The worst of the worst, robber barons like Poroschenko and criminal bankers like Kolomoisky went on to steal billions of “western” aid while the Ukrainian state fell apart. Defying the courts the power of the state is secretly abused for slapstick worthy plots to grab up industrial assets.
The victims are the people of Ukraine who get robbed of their means and their security. Russia, the permanent boogeyman of the “west”, is least to blame for it.
In August 2000 there was another crazy SBU plot which a month later unraveled:
On August 7 we reported how the Ukrainian intelligence service SBU, in the guise of a private military company, hired former Russian and Ukrainian soldiers allegedly for jobs in Venezuela. All the hired men had previously fought on the ‘Russian side’ of Ukrainian civil war in the Donbas region. The men were told to go to the Belorussian capital Minsk from where they were supposed to be later flown to Venezuela to guard oil installations.
The Ukrainian SBU then told the Belorussian security service KGB that the Russian mercenaries, who were then waiting in a resort near Minsk, were in Belarus to overthrow its president Lukashenko. The men were arrested and Lukashenko made a public fuss about the alleged Russian coup against him. Ukraine then asked for the extradition of the men. It had plans to indict them for their involvement in the Donbas war.
But just a few days after the men were arrested the whole plan unraveled. Russian media proved without doubt that the men had been tricked to go to Belarus and that they had no plans to overthrow Lukashenko. The Belorussian president apologized and the men were returned to Russia. As the Russian broadsheet kp.ru summarized (machine translation):
That version of the story has since been confirmed by the Ukrainian side (see below).
The original plot was indeed to get the former Russian soldiers (who had fought in Donbas) to Kiev by high jacking their plane on the way from Minsk to Turkey. Someone in the Zelensky government had prevented that by contacting the Belorussians.
Today we learn about another crazy Ukrainian plot. The Russian news agency Tass reports of it (machine translation):
FSB thwarted Ukrainian military intelligence operation to hijack Russian Aerospace Forces aircraft
MOSCOW, 25 July. /TASS/. The FSB of Russia disrupted the operation of the Ukrainian military intelligence to hijack the planes of the Russian Aerospace Forces, which was supervised by the NATO special services. This was reported to TASS on Monday at the Center for Public Relations (CSP) of the FSB of Russia.
“The Federal Security Service uncovered and stopped the operation of the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine to hijack combat aircraft of the Russian Aerospace Forces, supervised by NATO special services,” the CSO noted.
The FSB reported that “Ukrainian military intelligence officers, acting on behalf of the political leadership of their country, tried to recruit Russian military pilots for a monetary reward and guarantees of obtaining citizenship of one of the EU countries, to persuade them to fly and land aircraft at airfields controlled by the Armed Forces of Ukraine.”
As noted in the special service, the identification of these plans by the counterintelligence of the FSB also made it possible to strike at a number of Ukrainian military facilities. “In the course of the operational game, Russian counterintelligence officers obtained information that helped our armed forces inflict fire damage on a number of Ukrainian military facilities,” the FSB said. In addition, employees of the Ukrainian special services involved in the operation and their accomplices have been identified.
From the FSB video with a conversation with a Ukrainian intelligence representative, it follows that the Russian Aerospace Forces were ready to pay up to $2 million for the hijacked plane.
You may want to watch the video on the TASS site. It shows excerpts from Telegram chats, maps and flight plans, as well as a recording of the plotters talking with one pilot.
The basic story has been confirmed by Christo Grozev, who works for the British disinformation service Bellingcat as lead Russia investigator. But Grozev is giving the story a very different slant:
Christo Grozev @christogrozev – 11:51 UTC · Jul 25, 2022
Today FSB announced that they have “foiled a plot by Ukraine’s intelligence services” to lure Russian military pilots to surrender to Ukraine – with their planes – in return for millions of USD in payments (thread).
Using a traditional mix of forged “evidence” and loosely interpreted facts, the FSB also accused me personally of being involved in the plane-hijacking plot (on screen: totally forged message, I never had a UK number, obviously).
What is true, however, is I was involved in this crazier-than-fiction story of triple-agents, fake passports and faux girlfriends – as a documentary film maker. Yes, we were chronicling one of the wackiest counter-counter-intel operations of all time. And the docu is still on.
While Russia is presenting today this as a coup for its counter intelligence, in fact the operation was a serious blunder for the FSB, disclosing unintentionally identities of dozens of counter intel officers, their methods of operation, and their undercover assets.
Remember the Wagner sting operation in Belarus? Well, as Russia invaded Ukraine, some of the Ukrainian operatives who engineered that sting decided to repeat it: this time by enticing RU military pilots to surrender. In April, Ukraine adopted an “weapons-surrender-incentive law”
A team of Ukrainian operatives decided to approach Russian pilots with an offer based on this law. We found out about the initiative, and assured ourselves a front seat – to make a documentary about this brazen operation.
Several Russian military pilots were approached and even sent “proof-of-access” videos from inside their planes, in each case bearing a separate number hand-written on pieces of paper. Some of the footage from the inside of the planes was quite detailed and enlightening.
(Note that now FSB are presenting these videos as “controlled leaks” – while at the same time blurring the inside of the cockpit on TV).
The “negotiations” between the Ukrainian recruiters and the pilots, which we filmed, started out as expected, but their tone changed quickly, suggesting the pilots were no longer talking on their own behalf but were “coached” – likely by FSB military counter-intelligence officers
A clear clue that the FSB had intercepted the communications came when one of the pilots suddenly said he no longer wanted to get his wife out of the country, but his “lover” instead.
It took me about 5 minutes to discover that the pilot’s “lover” (waaay too hot for him, FSB) was an FSB asset, working as a fitness trainer by day, but moonlighting as an FSB girlfriend-for-hire the rest of the time. (The Ukrainians figured that out too).
Nor did the pilot seem to know anything about his “girlfriend’s” background (he was earnestly surprised she even had a travel passport, and that she had been in Istanbul a few months ago, and to Barcelona a year earlier).
…but I also found out throughout the process of her “boyfriend’s negotiations with the Ukrainians, she she had been talking to an FSB military counter-intel officer.
Another clue came when a different pilot suddenly asked his Ukrainian counterparts for advice in incapacitating his co-pilot with a sedative.
At this point, it became clear to me that the original luring operation was over – and had turned into a double “operational game” in which both sides were trying to extract maximum information from the other, while feeding them maximum disinfo.
The Ukrainians started feeding the “pilots” – imem the FSB -fake maps of their anti-aircraft deployments, as well as disinfo on the operational airstrips.
At the same time, the pilots sent (probabably equally fake) approach and descent maps of their own. We kept filming.
(At one point, the Ukrainians even convinced the FSB to send the wife of one of the pilots – along with a whole FSB tailing team – to Minsk, waiting for a promised “meet up” with the Ukrainians handlers. The FSB waited in vain for 4 days)
This bizarre mutual-deceipt game came to an end when the FSB realized no one will show up at any of the suggested meet-ups (FSB were keen to identify Ukrainian agents), realizing they’ve been burned. And the Ukrainians realized they’re likely not getting a real pilot either.
Despite the unexpected ending (so far), we still plan to finish this crazy film.
Grozev’s long account of him being involved as only a documentary film maker is unconvincing to me.
- The plot by whomever was certainly done in secret. So how would Grozev find out about it?
- Why would any secret service allow some outsider to film a documentary while they are implementing such a plot? Fact is, none would.
- How and why would the Russian FSB know that Grozev was involved in the whole thing if he was only documenting it?
- Why would it accuse him of being involved, including with chat screenshots he now claims are fake, if he played no active role in it?
More likely is that Grozev was part of the crazy scheme and helped the plotters with his ‘investigating’ experience.
The whole thing blew up and they now need a story, any story, that makes the failure look good. Grozev is providing that to an international audience.
The SBU did the same in the crazy fake murder of Arkady Babchenko case. They did the same after the crazy Wagner plot blew up.
Are you telling me that the people behind this would refrain from offering flimsy excuses now that their latest crazy plot has been exposed?