The «quiet Canadians», unlike the «quiet Americans» from intelligence agencies, are rarely caught red-handed when performing their duties. However, recently Canadian ambassador Jamal Khokhar was summoned to the Brazilian Ministry of External Relations.
Using a special program called Olympia, the Communications Security Establishment Canada monitored the content of telephone calls and electronic correspondence of employees of leading ministries. The Canadians, according to O Globo television exposés, even spied on the oil company Petrobras…
The scandal surrounding Canadian agents in Brazil has shown that the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) and the Communications Security Establishment Canada (CSEC) are essentially branches of the CIAand the NSA.
As a rule, the personnel of Canadian intelligence agencies receive initial and additional training at the relevant educational institutions in the U.S. The leadership and the employees know: a successful career is guaranteed if you work for the Empire.
Like their North American mentors, Canada’s intelligence agencies use the postulate that the Anglo-Saxon world must unite for victory over international terrorism as a cover. Canadian intelligence collaborates extensively with partners from the U.S., Great Britain, Australia and New Zealand.
One may judge the level of confidence based on the fact that Canada has been admitted to the top-secret «Five Eyes» system as part of a treaty on joint radio-electronic surveillance.
In Latin America, Canadian agents are very actively «working» politicians from such countries as Venezuela, Ecuador, Bolivia, and Nicaragua. A priority target is Cuba. The information obtained is passed on to the CIA, the NSA and other U.S. intelligence agencies.
The Canadians are not worried by the fact that the main goal of the secret operations assigned by their American colleagues against Latin American «populists» is the toppling of lawfully elected governments.
Neither are they worried by involvement in the activities of the most aggressive division of the NSA, Tailored Access Operations, which carries out hacker intrusions and targeted attacks which are punishable by prison sentence in the U.S., Canada and other Western countries.
Specialists note that hackers from Canadian intelligence agencies operate against potential opponents of the U.S. and NATO with no legal limitations.
In Brazil, spies from the «land of the maple leaf» also took on specific tasks in the interests of mining, energy and other companies, as well as the financial and banking sector. All of this came to light not only due to the revelations of Edward Snowden.
Brazilian counterintelligence double-checked Snowden’s information while the trail was still hot and found out that the Anglo-Saxons had access to all strategically important information.
It is impossible not to notice that the scandal around the «total electronic espionage» against Brazil did not lead to any significant changes in the intensity of American-Canadian operations in the country.
Brazilian bloggers note indignantly that Canadian officials are behaving as if nothing serious had happened. However, active inquiries are being conducted in the Ministry of Mines and Energy of Brazil and several other ministries to determine the character of some functionaries’ informal relations with Canadian diplomats and company representatives.
There are indications that in the near future there will be resounding exposures of Canadian agents operating in the sphere of industrial and economic espionage.
The Canadian government, imitating the Obama administration’s style, is in no hurry to apologize to Brazilian leaders. After a pause, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper made a very roundabout statement on this delicate issue: «I am very concerned about accusations that Canadian intelligence agents were spying on Brazilian officials».
Harper also reported that Canadian officials are taking measures to resolve the situation. He declined to make a judgment on the activities of Canadian intelligence in Brazil.
The representative of the Canadian Department of Defense took a similar position. The Canadian government used Michel Juneau-Katsuya, a former senior intelligence officer at the Canadian Security Intelligence Service, to make counteraccusations. He recalled that several years ago the Brazilians were caught engaging in commercial espionage, attempting to obtain information about Bombardier airplanes and Pratt and Whitney aircraft engines.
All of this was being done in the interests of the Brazilian company Embraer, a competitor of Bombardier. «It’s not unusual at all, stated Juneau-Katsuya». We’ve been doing it for a while. They [the Brazilians] might cry today and say they are the offended person, but they don’t have clean hands either.
Countries that don’t do industrial espionage are at a disadvantage. It’s part of the game. In an ideal world we shouldn’t be doing that, but if you are not doing it you are going to be left behind».
In Brazil Canadian agents mainly operate out of the embassy in the capital or at the consulates in the large cities of Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paolo, Porto Alegre and others.
However, several dozen agents have mixed in with «non-government organizations», often in regions where strategically important resources have been found or are being extracted. Lately Canadian representatives and «tourists» have been appearing more and more often in the Amazon basin.
Considering the cautious attitude of the Brazilian government toward any visits by Americans in that part of the country, it is understandable why such a switch has taken place.
Before the scandal in Brazil, Canadian spying was seen in Latin America as something of secondary importance and not dangerous. Now it has become clear that Canada is acting as a strategic ally of the United States. Prime Minister Harper shares Obama’s stands on many foreign policy issues.
The imperial arrogance of the U.S. president has to some extent rubbed off on Harper.
Brazil has completely lost confidence in his statements. For that reason, tacit monitoring of the intelligence activities of Canadian agents will be intensified, and Brazilian counterintelligence will be devoting more attention to identifying their contacts with opposition circles, especially radical ones.
There are grounds for this; In Venezuela it was through Canadian diplomats that funds for organizing protests against the Bolivarian regime were being transferred.
Nil NIKANDROV | Strategic Culture Foundation