Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Hack Attack?

All right, before I get going, a little housekeeping: It's the middle of the month, which means a new, exclusive interview is available on The Farm's Subscribers' Section. In this episode, I'm joined by the great Adam Gorightly. He is the author of numerous works, including The Prankster and the Conspiracy, The Shadow Over Santa Susana, James Shelby Downard's Mystical War, Caught in the Crossfire, and the forthcoming work Saucers, Spooks, and Kooks. He's also edited and contributed to a few books as well, including the Historica Discordia and the upcoming project involving James Shelby Downard. Finally, he has contributed to Adam Curtis' most recent documentary, Can't Get You Out of My Head: An Emotional History of the Modern World.

As many of your are probably aware, Adam Gorightly is the foremost authority on Kerry Thornley and Discordianism active today. He is also a Discordian and the keeper of their archives, which makes him the perfect candidate for a wide-ranging conversation involving the history of Discordianism and it's enduring legacy. And it's a far-reaching one, to be sure. Besides the influence on the broader counterculture that Adam detailed in The Prankster and the Conspiracy, Discordianism has also has a tremendous influence on neo-Paganism, conspiracy theories, hacker culture, and the rise of the Internet on the whole. 

Adam Gorightly

These are just a few of the Discordian related topics we covered. Also addressed were QAnon, the rise of the alt-right, and a sneak peak at Adam's forthcoming book, Saucers, Spooks, and Kooks. Even without delving to deeply, Adam drops one or two UFO-related names many of you are probably not familiar with. 

Adam Gorightly is the latest to join the ever-growing roster of exclusive guests in The Farm's Subscriber's Section. Past guests include Christopher KnowlesRichard B. Spence, Greg Bishop, J. Michael "Doc Future" Bennett, Neil Sanders, and David Metcalfe. Upcoming guests include Walter Bosley and the return of Douglas Valentine to The Farm. Please considering signing up. 

China Hands

All right, with that out of the way, let us move on to parapolitics. It probably goes without saying, but there have been many interesting developments of late. One that should surprise no one who reads this blog regularly is the Biden regime's China policy. 

I've long maintained that one of the principal purposes of the Trump administration was to reorient America foreign policy towards the Great Powers struggle, with a special emphasis on China. This process really into into overdrive in the final months of Trump's administration, with one final push to wind down the Forever Wars in the Middle East. Biden has seamlessly continued course by announcing a winding down of US support in Yemen

And despite the inevitable right wing fear mongering over Biden's China policy, early indications are that it will be even more militant than Trump. Remember Trump's trade war with China, which drew so much ire from the neo-liberal order? Well, it doesn't look like Sleepy Joe plans on ending it anytime soon

Far more eyebrow raising was the recent posture by the Atlantic Council (AC). This particular think tank is at the heart of the Anglo-American neo-liberal order. In particular, the Council has been one of the major proponents of Russiagate. Among others things, it partnered with Facebook to weed out Russia disinformation on social media and has modestly suggested that any political party or movement in Europe and the US that doesn't toe the neo-liberal order line is a tool of Putin.

With Trump out of office, one would think a formal olive branch would be extending East. Instead, a curious document entitled "The Longer Telegram: Towards a New American China Strategy" recently appeared on the AC's official website. Published anonymously, the title is a play on the famed "Long Telegram" issued by diplomat and foreign policy VIP George F. Kennan from Moscow in 1946. While Kennan later disputed his intention with this missive, it is generally credited with laying the foundation for the policy of "containment" in regards to the Soviet Union. It was also a major step towards initiating the Cold War against said Evil Empire, in other words.

George Kennan

With this kind of provocation right in the title, the content is about what one would expect

  • China is the greatest rival to US power in the twenty-first century
  • the US must use all means available to it, including it's control of the world's reserve currency; technology and telecommunications; and military might; to curtail China's rise
  • the US must draw numerous red lines past which the US will "directly intervene"
  • it advocates regime change so that, by 2050 (the year in which China hopes to reach military parity with the US) the nation will be under more "moderate control."
In case one mistakes the Atlantic Council's hawkish stance towards China as showmanship, consider Biden's leading national security advisor regarding China: Ely Ratner. Ratner is the kind of guy who called Trump "weak" on China this past spring. Predictably, Ratner has already been put in charge of policy review concerning China at the Pentagon. The most likely outcome of this review will be for the Pentagon to take a more direct role in containing China, which is in keeping with the Atlantic Council's thoughts on the matter. 


Already this is putting Biden on much more militant footing with China than Trump. Despite all the bluster, Trump largely tried to impose his China policy via the Treasury Department. Under Biden, it would seem that the Pentagon is poised to take a more active role. Hence, the reason why the Pentagon is in the midst of freeing up as many combat ready forces as possible in the Middle East for redeployment in the "Great Game." 

Solar Intrigues

But even as the US prepares for a new Cold War with China, TPTB are still floating the ludicrous Russia narrative. The latest whopper comes from a former KGB officer and associate of Alexander Litvinenko, a spook by the name of Yuri Shvets. Yuri helped frame the current narrative concerning the poisoning of Litvinenko while also posing as a source for journalist Craig Unger, who has a special relationship with the Russian narrative. In this case, Shvets alleges that the KGB cultivated Trump for 40 years as an asset. The claims serve as the backdrop for Unger's latest book, American Kompromat

state sponsored conspiracy theory

Talk about red meat for left wing QAnon. Far more interesting is the narrative being framed around the SolarWinds hack. For much of the following rundown, I'm greatly indebted to this fantastic article by Whitney Webb. The attacks appear to have begun in earnest during the fall of 2019, but it was not until spring 2020 that several federal agencies were breached. Among those who have acknowledged breaches are the Departments of Commerce, Energy, and Treasury. There are suspicions that the Departments of Defense and State, along with the Federal Reserve, NASA, and NSA were also affected. Interestingly, the CIA appears to have come out of this fairly unscathed. At least, officially. If so, it would be the only major component of the national security apparatus not compromised. 

Beyond government or quasi-government agencies, numerous corporations were affected as well. They included all of the ten major US telecommunications companies; the top five US accounting firms; major contractors like General Dynamics and Booz Allen Hamilton; and perhaps, most intriguingly, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Microsoft. So yeah, much the entire US "Overworld" is vulnerable, in other words. 

Predictably, the usual suspects have already implicated the Russians. Elsewhere, Trump (much to the ire of the legacy media) blamed China. Naturally, no one has suggested Israel, though Webb certainly makes a compelling case. 

It's also interesting to note that the company at the center of the hack, SolarWinds, is based out of Austin, Texas. And is just so happens that Austin and the surrounding area in central Texas has witnessed a groundswell of tech-related investment in recent years. The impetus for this appears to be the launch of the Army Futures Command in Austin during 2018, which brought in even more dollars for the already growing slew of tech start-up companies there. Also present in Austin are some spooky companies such as Stratfor as well as the heart of Alex Jones' InfoWars empire. So yeah, interesting place for such a pivotal hack to use as a launching point. 

Even more interesting is the recent slew of cyber attack snivelry by the neo-liberal order. Klaus Schwab, founder and head of the World Economic Forum (WEF), has recently suggested that a major cyber attack would make the COVID-19 crisis appear as a "small disturbance in comparison." Energy, transportation, and health services to could brought to a halt in the blink of an eye, along with society at large. Or so the story goes. 

Of course the WEF, along with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, hosted Event 201 in October 2019. This exercise simulated a global coronavirus outbreak. According to Webb, the WEF ran a similar simulation in 2020, but this one involved a "digital pandemic" brought about by a major cyber attack. Curiously, one of the participants in this simulation, along with VIPs like Schwab and Tony Blair, was Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin

Mishustin is an interesting guy. He assumed the post of prime minister in January 2020, shortly before the COVID situation started making headlines. Previously, he had served as head of the Federal Tax Service, which is somewhat akin to the Russian equivalent of the IRS. He gained a reputation there for his tech savvy approach. Among other things, he utilized digital surveillance to collect data on virtually every transaction in Russia and AI to search for tax evaders. This is in keeping with a reportedly longstanding interest Mishustin has in tech, which stretches back to the 1990s. 

Mikhail Mishustin

He seems like a sound choice to deal with a cyber attack at an executive level. It's understandable why the Russians would want him in his current post and at the WEF's simulated cyber attack. But would the neo-liberal order really want him there if they were planning on laying the blame on Russia? 

This is why I opened with the Biden administration's early moves regarding China. Even with the Russia hysteria at a fever pitch, moves are quietly being made to institutionalize the new Cold War with the PRC.  

Concluding Thoughts

To me it at least, the most intriguing aspect of the SolarWinds hack thus far is the close proximity the company has to the Army Futures Command. The AFC is involved in some interesting work, to put it mildly. This particular command is tasked with not just modernizing the US Army, but specifically for future readiness against peers who have achieved near parity. In other words, the AFC is the command tasked with retooling the Army for the forthcoming Great Powers (China) struggle. 

To achieve this, no stone has been left unturned. The AFC is throwing money at everything from hypersonic missiles to combat robots and even "super soldier" technology. Yes, the latter is increasingly a part of the Great Powers struggle. Not only is China pursuing them, but so to is France.

Army Futures Command insignia

For our purposes here, most intriguing are the AFC's efforts to develop "The Network." While the concept is vague, hypothetically it would be a secure network with "offense and defensive cyber capabilities, using artificial intelligence...". In other words, the AFC is at the forefront of beefing up the Army's cyber attack capabilities. 

So yeah, it's pretty interesting the company at the forefront of the Great Hack of 2020 is based out of Austin, at the heart of the budding tech industry there the AFC is integrating itself with. And given that the AFC is taking the lead in getting the Army on footing for the coming conflict with China, a compelling narrative could thus been spun if TPTB opt to go the Chinese hacker route. 

But it's also interesting that, as noted above, the CIA was comparatively unaffected by the hack. I've been chronicling the ongoing power struggle between the CIA and Pentagon for a while, both in my debut book Strange Tales of the Parapolitical and more recently on this blog. Does the SolarWinds hack belong in that context? There are no such indications thus far, but if the CIA did play a role, it could potentially provide them with glimpse into what their rivals in the Pentagon up to as an added bonus. But this is purely speculation on my part. 

Let us return to Webb to wrap up. She proposes that Microsoft will by the target. Given how widely used Microsoft products are, there's no question such an attack would be devastating to the global economy. Such a scenario would be far worse the downturn brought about by COVID-19, to put it mildly. If you haven't done so already, I'd advice giving Mr. Robot viewing in the near future.  Certainly it seems more and more like a docu-series by the day. 

Sunday, February 7, 2021

Similiar Shades of Gray

Thus far, 2021 has not disappointed. It has already outdone 2020 by this time last year in sheer skullduggery. The New Year got off with a preverbal bang via the bizarre LARP/coup of 1/6/21. About all that is certain at this point is that it was another deep event, along the lines of Watergate, and will thus probably take years (if not decades) to untangle this particular web. Still, there have already been some interesting tidbits that have been strategically leaked. 

At the forefront is a recent piece from Vanity Fair detailing the final, chaotic weeks at Trump's Pentagon. This is a fascinating article on several levels. First up is the journalist behind it: Adam Ciralsky. On the one hand, Ciralsky is a former CIA officer, which should always raise red flags. But in this case, it's especially odd. Trump's final Secretary of Defense, veteran special operator Christopher C. Miller, was keen on escalating the longstanding tensions between the Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) and the CIA during his few months in office. 

And yet Miller gave Ciralsky unfettered access to himself and his staff during his final weeks in office. Miller and his top aides even wore microphones during their last week in office for Ciralsky's story. It seems rather odd that Miller would give an ex-CIA officer this kind of access when he was effectively trying to cut the CIA out of the covert operations racket.

Zionism and the Prince 

But Ciralsky's bio is a very interesting one. Not only is he a former CIA officer, but one who was engaged in a lawsuit against the Agency for over a decade. Specifically, Ciralsky alleges that he was drummed out of the Company over anti-Semitism. In fairness, Ciralsky is related to Chaim Weizmann, Israel's first president and a Zionist, and surely supports both to some extent. In particular, the CIA appears to have had concerns over Ciralsky's ties to Israeli intelligence during the Clinton era


Thus, it is fair to question just how loyal Ciralsky was/is to the CIA. Certainly the Company did not appear to have a lot of confidence in that regard back in the 1990s. And it's unlikely the relationship has improved after Ciralsky managed to get former CIA director George Tenet to acknowledge anti-Semitism within the CIA during a deposition in 2010

2010 brings up another interesting aspect of Ciralsky's career that his Wiki page does not mention: his ties to Blackwater founder Erik Prince. When exactly this relationship began is unknown, but in 2010 Ciralsky published a celebrated piece concerning Prince's career with Vanity Fair. Currently, a movie is in the work's about Prince's life that will be based off of Ciralsky's Vanity Fair story and Prince's own autobiography. This no doubt looked like a plush deal when the project was announced in 2019, before the film industry went completely into the shitter.  

As with Miller, Prince gave Ciralsky unprecedented access, and even acknowledged the covert work his private military company did for the CIA during the Bush II years. This came at a time when Prince was being cut out of CIA work (but not work for JSOC) while simultaneously having to worry about potential lawsuits after the Obama administration took office. The great Jeremy Scahill suggested that Ciralsky's Prince article constituted a form of "graymailing." Graymailing occurs when a former intelligence/military officer or asset, who is either facing prosecution or believes that they soon will, threatens to reveal classified or sensitive operations in order to ward off charges. Ciralsky, who is himself a lawyer, would have been an idea candidate to assist Prince in these efforts via the media. 


It does not appear that the relationship between Ciralsky and Prince ended after the Vanity Fair piece either. According to Robert Young Pelton, author of Licensed to Kill: Hired Guns in the War on Terror and a former business partner of Prince, Ciralsky was hired by Prince in 2010, apparently to the tune of $20k per month. 

So, Ciralsky appears to have had a special relationship with Prince that stretches back to at least 2009, when the Vanity Fair piece started coming together. Ciralsky has been accused of having a close relationship with Israel, as has Prince. And finally, both men have butted heads with the CIA. Keep all of this in mind as we finally delve into Ciralsky's article. 

The Triumvirate  

Besides Miller, two other alleged Trump loyalists in the DoD are also profiled. They are Kash Patel, who became Miller's chief of staff during the final months of Trump's regime; and are old friend Ezra Cohen-Watnik. ECW is a fascinating figure we've been following a bit here recently. He's a close ally of Michael T. Flynn and has been accused of involvement in QAnon for years now. Indeed, it's possible that Flynn (and his old buddy, Stanley McChrystalwere the ones behind the Q operation. Naturally, ECW is quick to denounce QAnon and his alleged links to it in the Ciralsky piece. It probably helped that he had a sympathetic interviewer. 

The thing is, both Flynn and Ciralsky's old/current boss, Erik Prince, were part of the broader Cambridge Analytica network that brought Trump to power in the first place. That should put some perspective on what a puff piece this is, as effectively it's an article written by a lackey of the broader Cambridge/JSOC network profiling members of this network. Israel is also well represented in this network via the Israeli private intelligence firms Black Cube and Psy Group. The former shared the same financial backers as Cambridge while the latter directly worked with Cambridge. This whole network is rather incestuous, to put it mildly. 

And be assured, ECW isn't the only one in the club. Patel cut his national security teeth while working as an attorney of JSOC during the middle of the past decade


And SecDef Miller? Well, that brings up the most interesting disclosure in Ciralsky's article. The journalist covers the standard biographical details about Miller's background in Special Forces, then causally mentions he had served in "Task Force Orange." This is very curious of Ciralsky. 

You see, "Task Force Orange" was the original name for what is commonly referred to now as the "Intelligence Support Activity" (ISA), or simply "The Activity." The ISA is one of the most elite and secretive intelligence outfits in the entire national security apparatus. Among other things, it's JSOC's principal intelligence service. ISA members are frequently recruited from the ranks of the Green Berets, making Miller's background fairly typical of these types of operators. "Incidentally," another of the names used by the ISA is the "Army of Northern Virginia," which was also said to be the name of the group of military intelligence officer overseeing QAnon

the emblem of ISA

An observation: this seems to confirm my suspicions that the ascension of Miller to SecDef effectively amounted to a stealth takeover of the DoD by JSOC/US Special Operations Command. Miller, Patel, and ECW were the triumvirate behind the DoD during Trump's final months in office. Both Miller and Patel were directly involved with JSOC while ECW is a protégé of Flynn, who oversaw intelligence during McChrystal's tenure heading JSOC. And even the "journalist" embedded with these three men is a former/current employee of Erik Prince, a long time contractor for JSOC. 

Essentially, then, the Vanity Fair piece appears to be JSOC's spin on the final weeks of the Trump presidency. In that context, the spin makes perfect sense. Trump is depicted as unhinged and complicit in the events of 1/6/21. Miller, for instance, reveals how the president insisted that extra National Guardsmen be deployed to the capital the day prior to the storming, implying foreknowledge. Miller goes on to insist that he had prior authorization from Trump to deploy troops on the 6th, while noting Vice-President Mike Pence had vigorously supported the US of the military on that day (and while Trump was nowhere to be found). 


The money quote, however, comes from ECW, who sniveled: “The president threw us under the bus. And when I say ‘us,’ I don’t mean only us political appointees or only us Republicans. He threw America under the bus. He caused a lot of damage to the fabric of this country. Did he go and storm the Capitol himself? No. But he, I believe, had an opportunity to tamp things down and he chose not to. And that’s really the fatal flaw. I mean, he’s in charge. And when you’re in charge, you’re responsible for what goes wrong.”


ECW is quick to throw the Q bots under the bus as well, referring to them as "dangerous people that did the horrible, antidemocratic behavior with the Capitol." If Ciralsky ever asked ECW about the allegations of his old boss, Michael Flynn, and his role in Q, it didn't make it's way into the Vanity Fair piece. What did make it's why in there was Ciralsky drinking the Kool-Aid. While touring military bases across the country with Miller, this was supposedly his state of mind: "Exactly a week after the Capitol attack, as I sat inside STRATCOM—whose mission is to deter and, if necessary, annihilate America’s foreign adversaries—it was not lost on me that we had become a nation under threat from within."


Miller, Patel, and ECW ultimately come off, if not exactly as heroic, as honorable. They did their best to hold an unstable president at bay while preserving American democracy, or some such shit. Maybe they had been Trump loyalist up until Jan 6th, but when push came to shove, they did their duty for democracy. 


This provides Ciralsky with perfect cover to allow these officials to rail against the Department of Defense at the conclusion of his article. Miller describes it as "rotten" and bemoans the breakdown in civilian authority over the military. He describes members of Congress as "idolizing and fetishizing" the top brass, which has enabled the Joint Chiefs of Staff  (JCS) to run amok. 

Not be outdone, ECW proclaims "We're in a crisis mode." He then accuses the JCS of creating "security compartments" for the purposes of hiding operational planning details from their civilian minders in the Pentagon. Miller echoes these sentiments, while also including the "intelligence community" (a likely dig at the CIA) as being entangled in these compartments as well. 

Some Observations

If it isn't clear to you already, I'll spell it out: Besides a propaganda piece, Ciralsky is doing the same thing he did last time a Democratic regime was assuming office: help several of the more controversial members of the old guard graymail the incoming administration. In this case, what this particular triumvirate knows is surely juicy. 

Keep in mind, the Joint Chiefs are still largely dominated by the conventional forces. Conversely, there can be little doubt now that the triumvirate ruling the Pentagon in the final months of Trump's presidency was drawn from the ranks of the special operations and military intelligence communities, both of which have historically been underrepresented in the JCS. Given the venom Miller and company display towards the JCS, one is left wondering just how close the nation game to full blown gun battle among the Armed Forces. 


As incredible as this may sound, it's hardly without precedent in a modern Western democracy. In 1961, a military coup was attempted against De Gaulle in France. In that case, the putschists were almost entirely from the ranks of special operations forces and/or military intelligence. The conventional forces remained overwhelmingly loyal to De Gaulle, which no doubt helped the aging general remain in power. 

How close were we to seeing a reenactment of that here? We'll probably never know, but I suspect close enough to make certain quarters nervous. Since Trump won the 2016 election, I've noted much of his support in national security circles has come from the Joint Special Operations Command and fellow travelers. Trump represented a kind of coming out party for JSOC, revealing that it has became a major player in the Great Game. It managed to prevail in the 2016 election and get their guy in office. The Joint Chiefs and the CIA may have prevailed in 2020, but JSOC made major gains: the Special Operations Command has effectively been made it's own branch of the Armed Forces, on par with the Army, Navy, Air Force, etc. And soon, the CIA may be losing it's access to elite forces. Some are trying to spin this as a win for the CIA, enabling to refocus their efforts on Great Powers, but no one seems to dispute this will seriously hinder, if not cripple, their paramilitary capabilities. 

For more on the coup against De Gaulle, the rise of JSOC, and it's rivalry with the CIA, be sure to check out my debut book, where these issues are addressed at length

And then there's the whole QAnon thing. General Flynn is still at it. Elsewhere, his good friend and former JSOC head Stanley McChrsystal has compared the 1/6/21 LARPers to al-Qaeda, thus implying American has a budding insurgency that needs combating. 

Which is funny, because besides being America's premier counterterrorism force, JSOC is also it's principal counterinsurgency force as well. So yeah, it's interesting that Flynn and McChrystal, seem to be manufacturing a domestic insurgency and advocating more vigorous action against it, respectively. Flynn and McChrystal are both lifelong Democrats and military men who were drummed out of the service and disgraced during the Obama/Biden years. As such, the loyalty of either to a political ideology is probably secondary to what they created in JSOC during the Naughts at this point.  

And with that I shall wrap up for now dear readers. I will hopefully be able to cover how some of these developments will play out in the Biden regime in the near future. Until then, stay tuned.

Monday, February 1, 2021

Checking in on The Farm

Sorry for the lack of updates over the past month here on VISUP. The election cycle was rather exhausting, plus I've embarked upon several new projects since the start of the new year. Among other things, I'm trying my hand at filmmaking. We'll see how that goes, but hopefully I'll be more formally engaged in blogging soon. 

Fortunately, The Farm will be seeing regular updates to fill the void. And February starts with two great new episodes. The first witnesses what will hopefully be the first of future collaborations with George from CAVDEF. George is an exciting young researcher whose been investigating the grizzly murder of JonBenet Ramsey. During this wide-ranging conversation, George and I tackle that case and many other things. Hint: as this is an installment in The Farm's ongoing Anti-Mystery Babylon series, it involves a secret society, and one many of you have almost surely never heard of before. 

But that's not all. As this is also the first of the month, it also means it's time for another of premium show for The Farm's Subscribers' Section. For for the cost of $5 per month you receive to additional, full length shows per month, typically on the 1st and 16th. And I try my best to ensure these shows have exclusive guests and content.

So, up today is the great Greg Bishop. For those of you unaware, Greg's strange journey began when co-founded the magazine The Excluded Middle during the early 1990s. It covered a host of topics ranging from UFOs, new science, the paranormal, conspiracy, and psychedelia.  During the early Naughts, he became the host of Radio Misterioso, which is still going strong today. He is also the author of several works, including Wake Up Down There!, Weird California, It Defies Language!, and of course the classic Project Beta.

For this chat, Greg and I cover the Bennewitz Affair, one of the most cautionary tales in all of conspiritainment. Other topics of note include, J. Allen Hynek, Jacques Vallee, targeted individuals, the Dulce mythos, the Association of Former Intelligence Officers, Greg's Co-Creation hypothesis, conspiracy theories, and the current state of Ufology. We also found the time to talk some rock 'n' roll and even a little Twin Peaks, which we both agree is the best depiction of the Other Side.

In addition to Greg, recent premium interviews have also featured Richard B. Spence and Christopher Knowles, while the coming weeks will see shows with the likes of Adam Gorightly and Walter Bosley, among others.