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Spy exfiltrated from Russia has shockingly lax security after Putin paints a target on his back: columnist

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The U.S. spy exfiltrated from Russia following intelligence risks exacerbated by President Donald Trump was, by all accounts, an extremely deep-embedded asset, with direct access to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

And yet, noted Amy Knight of The Daily Beast, the spy — whose identity remains anonymous for their protection — allegedly does not have security measures as strong as would be expected at their northern Virginia home.

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“Given the threat from the vengeful and murderous regime of Russian President Vladimir Putin, the home appears to be closely watched (judging by the convergence of cars when The Daily Beast showed up), but security seems, to say the least, lax,” wrote Knight.

Why is this the case? Knight offered multiple theories.

First of all, she noted, “perhaps he’s not that important or indeed that spy. Maybe there was another Deep Throat extracted from the Kremlin. But the profiles do seem to fit.”

“Another more likely possibility is that over the years the CIA has come to believe that the Russian secret services would not dare to carry out what are known in the trade as ‘wet works,’ or assassinations, on U.S. soil,” she suggested.

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But if this is the case, it seems foolhardy. The Russian government has proven itself more than capable of targeted plots against its enemies on the soil of Western countries, most notably the attempted murders of Alexander Litvinenko in London and Sergei Skripal in Salisbury.

Moreover, noted Knight, it is possible the Russian government already knows who this spy is, given that they were reportedly the source of the knowledge that Putin directly ordered Russian interference in the 2016 election, and the Kremlin began an aggressive campaign of investigations and arrests as U.S. intelligence officials revealed the scope of the plot.

“It has long been conventional wisdom that the Kremlin would not dare to assassinate its enemies in the United States,” wrote Knight, partly because the security services struggle to find people willing to undertake such assignments. But, “there have been at least two suspicious deaths of important defectors here in the U.S.” — Walter Krivitsky, and Sergei Tretyakov.

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“The fact is Putin does not much care if the Kremlin is caught red-handed. Quite the opposite,” concluded Knight. “The goal, as always, is to send a warning to political enemies and would-be defectors that Putin’s vengeful reach extends around the globe.”


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Pennsylvania Republican senator arrested and charged with possession of child pornography

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According to a release from Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro, Republican state Sen. Michael Folmer has been arrested and charged with possession of child pornography.

The release said that the investigation began as the result of a CyberTip about Tumblr discovering that a user had uploaded child pornography onto their site. It ultimately led to the home of Folmer in Lebanon, PA. A search warrant yielded images on Folmer's phone.

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Netanyahu refuses to concede after he falls short — blames media instead

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Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, refused to concede after being down in the election night polls. Like the last election, Netanyahu is claiming his own personal victory and blaming the media for all of his woes.

Senior Diplomatic correspondent Barak Ravid, at Channel 13 News in Tel-Aviv, was live-tweeting the election results late Tuesday night.

https://twitter.com/barakravid/status/1174116674225758209?s=21

"Netanyahu says Israel needs a Zionist government that is committed for Israel as a Jewish state. No government can be based on support from Arab parties," Ravid said.

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Mitch McConnell crony running for Kentucky AG is ineligible for office: lawsuit

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On Tuesday, the Lexington Herald-Leader reported that a new lawsuit seeks to remove Daniel Cameron from the ballot as the Kentucky GOP's nominee for state attorney general.

According to the lawsuit, filed by retired union worker and "concerned citizen" Joseph Leon Jackson Sr. in Jefferson Circuit Court, Cameron does not meet the office requirement of having practiced law for eight years — because although he was admitted by the Kentucky Bar Association in 2011, he spent two of the following years clerking for U.S. District Judge Gregory Van Tatenhove.

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