/ 18 March 2021

Spy games in US and Oz

US President Joe Biden thinks Russian President Vladimir Putin is a killer and told him that “he will pay a price” for attempts to undermine America’s democracy. His comments follow the release of a declassified intelligence report into foreign interference in the 2020 US presidential election yesterday that said Russia attempted to “denigrate” Biden’s candidacy. Aside from Russia, the report says Iran made attempts to meddle, but China did not. Election meddling will remain an “enduring challenge” into the future, US Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines said.

Meanwhile, Australian Security Intelligence Organisation boss Mike Burgess delivered his annual report on the nation’s security threats last night, saying a “nest of spies” was uncovered and dealt with last year. Refusing to name the country behind the attempts to infiltrate government, politics and police ranks, speculation within the intelligence community points to Russia, reports say. Burgess also said it’s no longer correct to refer to ‘right-wing’ and ‘left-wing’ extremism because the rise of ideologically-driven violent extremism is too nuanced.

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