Vladimir Putin, the former KGB operative turned political bag man for the St. Petersburg’s mayor turned leader of Russia, has seen his fair share of conspiracies. He likely knows the intricate deceptions and convoluted plans that occur behind the scenes every day. But now Putin may have let his imagination get the better of him, as he puts on a tin hat and claims the entire Internet – including its creation – is a CIA project.
Forget Al Gore or Tim Berners-Lee, Bill Casey is the real technical genius
Forget Al Gore or Tim Berners-Lee. The real power behind the Internet are people such as former CIA Director William Casey, a former political hack for Ronald Reagan who oversaw the blow-up of the Iran-Contra scandal and worked in a White House that didn’t even have a conference call system or modern telephones. Or could it be the real inventor of the Internet was CIA Director Stansfield Turner, who couldn’t keep a lid on agent Frank Snepp when he published a book, Decent Interval, about incompetence during the Vietnam war and the agency’s incompetence during the fall of Saigon. Yes, sir. The barrel chested, bare-back horse riding Russian oligarch thinks the Internet is just one big CIA front. According to the Associated Press, Putin said the Internet originally was a “CIA project” and “is still developing as such.”
Putin’s words send Russian search engine Yandex falling
As if to up the ante on intrigue, Putin eluded to unspecified pressure exerted on Yandex, Russia’s largest search engine, in its early years. He chided the company for its registration in the Netherlands “not only for tax reasons but for other considerations, too,” but didn’t elaborate.
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Yandex NV (NASDAQ:YNDX) later put Putin’s curious statement in context, saying the company received its first investments from international funds and investors, “which is the usual practice for any online start-up in any country,” indicating this was the source of the “pressure.”
Yandex NV (NASDAQ:YNDX) also said in a statement the company registered in the Netherlands “solely due to the specifics of corporate law,” not because of the low taxes, pointing out “practically all the taxes are paid in Russia.”
Shares fell 5% on the NASDAQ immediately after Putin made his comments.