Russian soldier proposes with 16 tanks in the shape of a heart on Valentine's Day

Alexandra Kopytova accepted the proposal at the barrel of a gun. Or 16 guns, technically, which were attached to a fleet of T-72B3 Soviet Battle Tanks that her now-fiance, Lieutenant Denis Kazantsev, brought in as part of an elaborate military maneuvering drill to ask his beloved's hand in marriage. From RT (because of course it's from RT):

Though Valentine’s Day is not really a Russian tradition, the spirit of the day was not lost on Kazantsev’s commanders, who gave the go-ahead for the mission at the Alabino testing grounds, southwest of Moscow. On Thursday morning, 16 tanks rolled onto the range for a maneuvering drill in which they formed two columns and lined up in a heart formation.

The mission’s success, however, hinged on the approval of one person who was neither a major nor a general. With her eyes covered, 19-year-old Alexandra was led into the middle of the formation by Denis, 23. When she opened her eyes, she saw Kazantsev kneeling with a bouquet of red roses.

"I postponed the proposal for about one month to organise all this so it would be unforgettable, once in a lifetime," Kazantsev told the Daily Mail. "It was not easy but with time my commanders agreed to let me do this."

This awkwardly-sweet-in-a-distinctly-Russian-way fairytale gets even weirder when you realize that Koptyova and Kazantsev were … actually already married. He had previously proposed on New Year's Eve 2017, at a time when they were living in separate cities, and got to enjoy a whole two weeks of marriage in St. Read the rest

Check out this tool for exploring Facebook ads purchased by Russia to influence the 2016 election

Fathom Information Design created an interactive website called Fakebook that presents a bunch of Facebook ads purchased by Russia-linked agents, showing the intended audiences for the ads. Is their any reason to doubt that the Russians are still buying Facebook ads designed to divide and anger Americans?

In late 2017, the Senate Intelligence Committee released a sample of Facebook ads purchased by Russia-linked agents to influence the 2016 U.S. presidential election. This tool reveals how they targeted demographics to spread disinformation, increase hostility and discourage voters.

Advertisers on Facebook can target users based on pages they follow. The Russians targeted over 700 interests, such as Texas secession and Bernie Sanders. We used an algorithm to cluster them into the topics shown here based on the number of times interests were targeted by the same ad.

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Wikileaks’ “Secret Correspondence“ with Don Trump Jr. published

The Atlantic has released a bombshell story. Leaked files show Donald Trump Jr., the bumbling son of the United States questionably elected President, apparently cooperating with Wikileaks, an organization declared a "hostile intelligence service" by CIA Director Michael Pompeo.

These conversations took place through Twitter DM and would have been accepted by Jr. Trump, and could have been blocked at any time. The timing of various tweets, matched with other events, certainly carries the appearance of a bi-directional relationship.

Via The Atlantic:

On October 3, 2016, WikiLeaks wrote again. “Hiya, it’d be great if you guys could comment on/push this story,” WikiLeaks suggested, attaching a quote from then-Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton about wanting to “just drone” WikiLeaks founder, Julian Assange.

“Already did that earlier today,” Trump Jr. responded an hour-and-a-half later. “It’s amazing what she can get away with.”

Two minutes later, Trump Jr. wrote again, asking, “What’s behind this Wednesday leak I keep reading about?” The day before, Roger Stone, an informal advisor to Donald Trump, had tweeted, “Wednesday@HillaryClinton is done. #WikiLeaks.”

WikiLeaks didn’t respond to that message, but on October 12, 2016, the account again messaged Trump Jr. “Hey Donald, great to see you and your dad talking about our publications,” WikiLeaks wrote. (At a rally on October 10, Donald Trump had proclaimed, “I love WikiLeaks!”)

“Strongly suggest your dad tweets this link if he mentions us,” WikiLeaks went on, pointing Trump Jr. to the link wlsearch.tk, which it said would help Trump’s followers dig through the trove of stolen documents and find stories.

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