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Russia marvels at high-tech 'spy stone'
Reuters UK ^ | Thu Jan 26, 2006

Posted on 01/27/2006 6:23:17 AM PST by A. Pole

MOSCOW (Reuters) - A fake stone alleged to have been used by British spies to communicate with Moscow agents was a "wonder" of technology that cost tens of millions of pounds (dollars), Russia's FSB security service said on Thursday.

FSB spokesman Sergei Ignatchenko praised the high-tech spy stone, which would look at home in a James Bond film, and listed its extraordinary qualities.

The stone was revealed by the FSB on Sunday in a television programme that apparently showed four British spies using it as a dead letter drop.

"This is like space technology in its qualities. You could throw this stone from the 9th floor, it can survive a long period in water, it has several different kinds of defence," Ignatchenko said in televised comments.

"According to our experts' assessments, this device costs several tens of millions of pounds. You could only create this technological wonder in laboratory conditions."

Britain has not admitted the Russian charges, and President Vladimir Putin has said he is undecided on whether to expel the group - as is traditional for diplomats caught in espionage.

Ignatchenko said the stone was one of two used to secretly store data that was detected by the Russians, and that the other one had been removed by the British before the FSB had decided what to do with it.

Although some observers giggled about the spat, especially scenes that apparently showed a British spy kicking the stone to try to make it work, human rights groups say it is serious.

The FSB accused the British not only of spying but also of funding non-governmental organisations (NGOs), although it was unclear how the two charges were connected.

The suggestions were damaging for NGOs just days after the final approval of tough new curbs on them, which will give security services and tax authorities broad oversight over activists' activities.

Putin had backed the law despite the curbs being criticised in the West, and on Wednesday he said the spy spat showed the law was necessary and would stop spies infiltrating Russian society in future.


TOPICS: Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events; Political Humor/Cartoons; Russia; United Kingdom
KEYWORDS: 007; bond; jamesbond; mi6; ohmss; q; russia; spies; spying; uk

1 posted on 01/27/2006 6:23:20 AM PST by A. Pole
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To: A. Pole

Romancing the Stone?..........


2 posted on 01/27/2006 6:25:05 AM PST by Red Badger (...I will bless them that bless thee and those who curse thee I will turn into Liberals..........)
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To: Red Badger

Renouncing the stone.

Jesse


3 posted on 01/27/2006 6:29:52 AM PST by Jesse Segovia
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To: A. Pole
Intelligence gathering is as old as countries are. They know this goes on all the time, to the ones who are involved in this it is a game. Kind of funny how they appreciate all the hard work went into this "rock", and don't really seem to be bothered by finding it, just awed at how well it was constructed.
4 posted on 01/27/2006 6:31:34 AM PST by Abathar (Proudly catching hell for posting without reading since 2004)
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To: Red Badger
Romancing the Stone?..........

. . . a British spy kicking the stone to try to make it work, human rights groups say it is serious.

What's the penalty for abusing the stone?

5 posted on 01/27/2006 6:32:05 AM PST by Racehorse (Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.)
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To: A. Pole

Too bad the stone did not have self destruct capabilities.


6 posted on 01/27/2006 6:32:18 AM PST by Wiz
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To: A. Pole

Very funny.


7 posted on 01/27/2006 6:32:32 AM PST by ClearCase_guy
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To: A. Pole
If one should ever visit Russia, it should come to mind to occasionally kick a nearby rock.
8 posted on 01/27/2006 6:36:43 AM PST by Deaf Smith
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To: Abathar
Kind of funny how they appreciate all the hard work went into this "rock", and don't really seem to be bothered by finding it, just awed at how well it was constructed.

To add another funny twist, Putin recommended that these British spies are not to be expelled:

"[...]
The Russian president, Vladimir Putin, yesterday said that four British diplomats accused of espionage in Moscow should not be expelled, as their replacements might be cleverer than they were and harder to catch.
[...]

(Clumsy British spies are better than crafty ones, says Putin )

9 posted on 01/27/2006 6:40:27 AM PST by A. Pole (Dr. Michael Savage is in and the diagnosis is clear: "Liberalism is a Mental Disorder")
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To: A. Pole
Now pay attention 007...that may look like an ordinary stone...


10 posted on 01/27/2006 6:53:47 AM PST by xp38
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To: A. Pole
Image hosted by Photobucket.com "According to our experts' assessments, this device costs several tens of millions of pounds. You could only create this technological wonder in laboratory conditions."

ohhh, a BlackBerry...

11 posted on 01/27/2006 7:29:03 AM PST by Chode (American Hedonist )
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To: A. Pole


OhMyGod! Just think
of how much information
someone collected!
12 posted on 01/27/2006 7:32:47 AM PST by theFIRMbss
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To: A. Pole

What do human rights groups have to do with spying?


13 posted on 01/27/2006 7:51:50 AM PST by CharlesWayneCT
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To: CharlesWayneCT

What do human rights groups have to do with spying?==

One of british diplomats who was cought on tape near spy stone with palmtop accually was one who signed the money grants for some russian NGO organizations.
You see? the british spy in Moscow send money to NGOs. Now th eklegitimate question: Does those NGOs fulfill british intellegence orders?


14 posted on 01/27/2006 8:55:07 AM PST by RusIvan ("THINK!" the motto of IBM)
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To: A. Pole

Glad to see someone still has the stones to spy on Ivan...


15 posted on 01/27/2006 3:19:47 PM PST by ncson (No, Thanks.)
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To: A. Pole
Ha! The KGB fell for the old fake communication rock trick. Here is the real reason the agent was kicking the rock.

www.theage.com.au

Clearly, he was just adjusting his antenna.

16 posted on 01/27/2006 4:33:05 PM PST by Colorado Doug (Diversity is divisive. E. Pluribus Unum (Out of many, one))
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To: A. Pole

Hanson....Hanson.....Hanson


17 posted on 01/28/2006 9:33:12 AM PST by Sacajaweau (God Bless Our Troops!!)
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