To say that diplomatic relations between the United States and Russia aren’t so great would be quite the understatement. Sure, there isn’t an all-out armed conflict between the two super powers at the moment, but with a recent report that hackers sponsored by the latter government infiltrated the Democratic National Committee’s computers and stole “opposition research,” things aren’t great. Hence why Russian President Vladimir Putin recently asked European businesses to help end sanctions against his country in what Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev and others have dubbed a “new cold war.” That, and the country’s security and intelligence operatives are allegedly harassing U.S. diplomats abroad.
According to a truly bizarre story by the Washington Post, things have gotten so bad that U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry had to confront Putin about his people’s actions. Which begs the question, “How bad is it that America’s top diplomat has to personally intervene on his department’s behalf?” Plenty of “routine” actions like “following diplomats or their family members, showing up at their social events uninvited or paying reporters to write negative stories about them,” as well as frighteningly weird ones like what allegedly happened to embassy staffers whose homes were broken into:
In a series of secret memos sent back to Washington, described to me by several current and former U.S. officials who have written or read them, diplomats reported that Russian intruders had broken into their homes late at night, only to rearrange the furniture or turn on all the lights and televisions, and then leave. One diplomat reported that an intruder had defecated on his living room carpet.
Yes, that’s right. Somebody broke into an American official’s home a ruined a perfectly good carpet. One that probably really tied the room together.