Spy satellite NROL-32 logo and purpose

NROL-32 “the largest satellite” in the world the other day but won’t tell you what it is going to be used for. However, if you are curious, you can find the logo / patch online. In case you are wondering, Annuit Coeptis (I can’t type the exact characters) is roughly translated as “Providence favors our undertakings” or “Providence has favored our undertakings.” Just to give a little Masonic twist onto the NRO’s satellite mission (yes, these are the same words that are over the pyramid on the US dollar bill). So what does NROL-32 do? Probably electronic eavesdropping. The size is mammoth, rivaling the ISS Space Station so amateur satellite trackers will likely be able to see it:

“I believe the payload is the fifth in the series of what we call Mentor spacecraft, a.k.a. Advanced Orion, which gather signals intelligence from inclined geosynchronous orbits. They are among the largest satellites ever deployed,” said Ted Molczan, a respected sky-watcher who keeps tabs on orbiting spacecraft. Destined for geosynchronous orbit 22,300 miles above the planet, this new spacecraft supposedly will unfurl an extremely lightweight but gigantically huge umbrella-like antenna to overhear enemy communications and aid U.S. intelligence.
Keep watching the Skies!]]>

Another day, another human rights activist dead in Russia

This is getting to be a bit repetitive…  

The head of a children’s charity was found shot dead in Chechnya today, a day after she and her husband were abducted by armed men. The bodies of Zarema Sadulayeva and Alik Dzhabrailov were found in the boot of a car in a suburb of the capital Grozny, the human rights group Memorial said. The murder of Ms Sadulayeva comes less than a month after a gang kidnapped and killed Natalia Estemirova, another prominent rights activist in the turbulent southern Russian region.
chechenRamzan Kadyrov, the leader of Chechnya, will likely face some additional pressure after this latest killing.  Kadyrov is often accused of removing some of his opponents, and the head of the charity where Sadulayeva worked recently accused Kadyrov of orchestrating a campaign of murder and intimidation.]]>