Russian Space Advisor and Defence Journalist Arrested For Treason

Longtime Russian defence journalist and more recent government advisor on space issues, Ivan Safronov has been arrested in Moscow and charged with treason, according to a new report from the Moscow Times. Safronov faces 20 years in prison and the trial will reportedly be conducted behind closed doors. Read More >>

Twitter Deletes More than 170,000 Accounts Linked to Chinese Misinformation Effort

Twitter announced Thursday that it had shut down more than 170,000 accounts linked to a Beijing-backed campaign to spread propaganda about the Chinese government, particularly regarding its response to the coronavirus pandemic and pro-Democracy protests in Hong Kong. Read More >>

Siberian Officials Say Huge Diesel Spill Has Reached a Sensitive Arctic Lake

A major diesel spill from a power plant in Siberia has reached a fragile freshwater lake that leads to the Arctic Ocean, according to regional officials. That could create an ecological catastrophe. Read More >>

Catastrophic Diesel Fuel Spill in Siberia Prompts State of Emergency

Russian President Vladimir Putin has declared a state of emergency after an estimated 20,000 tonnes of diesel fuel poured out of a fuel tank and into a nearby river. The spill – possibly the worst of its kind in the Arctic region – is being attributed to melting permafrost, yet another sad impact of climate change. Read More >>

SpaceX’s Spacecraft Docks Successfully While U.S. And Russia Launch Cold War-Era Quips on the Ground

Some 19 hours after the launch of SpaceX’s Crew Dragon capsule in Florida, NASA astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley were welcomed aboard the International Space Station following a successful docking. When asked about their journey, Hurley told NASA officials back on the ground that he “couldn’t be happier” about how the spacecraft performed. Read More >>

climate change
Russia Just Smashed Its Record for Hottest Winter

Russia is normally considered a bastion for cold. But it just experienced its warmest winter since records started some 130 years ago. And we can all blame climate change. Read More >>

climate change
Moscow Didn’t Get a Winter This Year

Russia holds a place in our cultural imagination as being cold as balls. But with climate change, past results don’t guarantee future performance. Or even present performance for that matter. Read More >>

julian assange
Julian Assange Lawyers to Argue Trump’s New Intel Chief Sought Shady Extradition Deal

Defence lawyers for Julian Assange, the WikiLeaks founder facing possible extradition to the U.S. from the UK on 18 charges related to his leaks of U.S. military and security secrets, plan to argue they have evidence new acting Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell abused his power to interfere in the case on behalf of Donald Trump, Politico reported on Monday. Read More >>

Moscow Using Facial Recognition to Enforce Coronavirus Quarantine of 2,500 Travellers from China

Moscow is using facial recognition technology to enforce a quarantine on thousands of people who arrived in Russia from China, over fears of the new coronavirus that has killed over 2,000 people worldwide, according to a new report from the Moscow Times. The news comes as the virus, which causes an illness dubbed Covid-19, continues to spread more rapidly outside of China, and as Russia comes under increased scrutiny for its use of facial recognition tech. Read More >>

julian assange
Julian Assange Says Trump Offered Him a Pardon to Deny Russia Hacked Democrats in 2016

Lawyers for beleaguered WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange claim that Donald Trump offered him a pardon if he’d claim the 2016 hacks of Democratic Party email systems had nothing to do with Russia, the Guardian reported on Wednesday. Read More >>

Report: Russia Says Smartphones Sold in the Country Must Have Software that Supports Traditional Russian Values

Months after Russia banned the sale of gadgets that aren’t pre-installed with Russian-made software, government officials in that country have drafted new guidelines on what types of software companies may have to install. Read More >>

There’s at Least One Thing That Bing Does Better Than Google – Disinformation

The Bing search engine – which is still around ten years after Microsoft created it, despite having only five per cent market share – gets a lot of flak for not being as useful as Google’s search engine. But a recent study found that it’s actually even worse at delivering information than was previously known. Read More >>

Famous Foxes Bred for Tameness Weren’t Actually Wild in the First Place, Claims Controversial New Paper

Decades ago, a Soviet geneticist purposely bred foxes to make them extra tame, an experiment that produced a host of unanticipated physical changes in the animals. It’s one of the most famous experiments in genetics, but it might not have gone down in the way we were told. A new opinion paper argues these foxes weren’t wild to begin with and that the 'domestication syndrome' associated with the changes doesn’t exist – a claim that’s stirring up controversy among some biologists. Read More >>

Reddit Uncovers Russian Interference Campaign Ahead of General Election

Fears of Russian interference ahead of the UK general election were all but confirmed this week with a Reddit post. Read More >>

Polar Bears Have Invaded A Russian Town – Again

Over the past few days, 56 hungry polar bears have wandered into Ryrkaypiy, a village in far north Russia, forcing locals to cancel their New Year’s celebrations. Read More >>