Apr 102024
 
 April 10, 2024  Posted by at 8:47 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,  43 Responses »


Pieter Bruegel the Elder The Fall of the Rebel Angels 1562

 

(Hunter) Biden-Linked Burisma Used For Terror Attacks In Russia – Moscow (RT)
Burisma ‘Vehicle To Launder Taxpayer Money’ – Lawyer (RT)
Musk Warns Of Terrorist Threat To US (RT)
No Russian Misinfo On X, But Western Influence Ops Present – Musk (RT)
Musk: Starlink Free for Brazil Schools If Government Cancels Contract (ET)
‘Automated Murder’: Israel’s ‘AI’ in Gaza (Patrick Lawrence)
Ukraine ‘Losing The War’ – Chuck Schumer (RT)
Ukrainian NATO Membership ‘Fundamentally Unacceptable’ – Moscow (RT)
‘High-Intensity War In Europe No Longer A Fantasy’ – Borrell (RT)
China Sending Message That ‘It Has Russia’s Back’ If West Escalates (Sp.)
‘Russiagate’ About Seizing Power as Much as Stopping Trump (Sp.)
Jack Smith Urges SCOTUS to Reject Trump’s Presidential Immunity Claim (ET)
Trump Body-Slams Lindsey Graham For Insisting On Nationwide Abortion Limit (ZH)
Neom: Saudi Arabia ‘Scales Back’ Goals Of Megacity Project (MEE)
Boeing Shares Tumble After NYT Reveals Whistle-Blower Report (ZH)

 

 

 

 

Chasing Trump

 

 

Colbert AOC

 

 

 

 

RFK
https://twitter.com/i/status/1777710201937732085

 

 

CIA contractor

 

 

Finkelstein
https://twitter.com/i/status/1777519791168696416

 

 

 

 

“The same company that hired Hunter Biden and paid Joe Biden to get the prosecutor fired who was investigating them.”

(Hunter) Biden-Linked Burisma Used For Terror Attacks In Russia – Moscow (RT)

Criminal probes into the financing of terrorist activities in Russia and abroad have been launched against several private companies, the country’s Investigative Committee announced on Tuesday. The list of suspects includes the Ukrainian industrial conglomerate Burisma Holdings, linked to a corruption scandal surrounding the Biden family that has been dragging on for years. The criminal investigation stems from a complaint filed by a group of Russian MPs and public figures in the aftermath of the deadly Crocus City Hall attack outside Moscow last month. The original complaint identified the US and its allies as allegedly organizing a string of attacks on Russian soil. So far, investigators have “established that the funds, flowing through commercial organizations, including the oil and gas conglomerate Burisma Holdings, operating in Ukraine, have been used in recent years to carry out terrorist attacks in Russia,” committee spokeswoman Svetlana Petrenko said.

Terrorist activities have also reached beyond the country, aimed at the “elimination of prominent political and public figures, as well as causing economic damage,” she added. The committee’s specialists have been working “in cooperation with other intelligence services and financial intelligence,” Petrenko noted. The scrutiny currently revolves around “checking sources of income and further movement of funds in the amount of several million US dollars,” and examining the potential involvement of “specific individuals from among government officials, people with civic and commercial organizations of Western countries,” the spokeswoman stated. Burisma is probably best known internationally for its controversial ties to the current first family in the US. In the spring of 2014, following the US-backed coup in Kiev, the Ukrainian energy firm hired Hunter Biden and his business partner Devon Archer on its board of directors, offering $1 million a year in pay.

Biden’s father Joe was President Barack Obama’s vice president at the time, and oversaw Washington’s Ukraine policy. He once famously bragged about getting a corruption prosecutor fired – which just happened to occur after that prosecutor began investigating Burisma. Nikolay Zlochevsky’s company also offered protection payments to the government in Kiev, according to former Ukrainian MP Andrey Derkach. Zlochevsky paid some “800 million hryvnias [over $21 million] for terrorism financing” in “various jurisdictions,” Derkach claimed in January. “The leaders of Ukraine’s security services make no secret of the fact that they carry out terrorist acts and political assassinations for extra-budgetary cash,” he said at the time. “Once again: Biden’s partners in the corruption business in Ukraine finance terrorist acts, thus avoiding responsibility for corruption in Ukraine.” Derkach claimed it was common practice for the owners of large businesses in Ukraine to ‘donate’ to the war effort in exchange for immunity from prosecution. He pointed to a criminal case against Zlochevsky relating to a $6 million cash bribe that ended with the Burisma owner paying a $1,800 fine.

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It’s ideally situated for the purpose.

Burisma ‘Vehicle To Launder Taxpayer Money’ – Lawyer (RT)

The Russian Investigative Committee on Tuesday said it launched a criminal probe into the financing of terrorism, naming the Ukrainian industrial conglomerate Burisma among the suspects. RT spoke about the unfolding scandal to Arnaud Develay, an international human rights advocate and the author of a book covering ties between the Ukrainian company and the family of US President Joe Biden. “This is something that the Russian Investigative Committee is going to have to determine to be sure, but this is nothing new,” Develay stated, describing the Ukrainian company as a “vehicle to launder taxpayers’ money.” The investigators have already “established that the funds, flowing through commercial organizations, including the oil and gas conglomerate Burisma Holdings, operating in Ukraine, have been used in recent years to carry out terrorist attacks in Russia” and beyond.

Should the allegation prove to be true, the West will try its best to swipe the whole affair under the rug, as well as to derail any attempts to bring it before international bodies, Develay believes. “They would try to fight tooth and nail to basically deny it,” he said, adding that an attempt to establish a UN-backed tribunal to handle the affair is bound to get vetoed by the “Big Three” – the US, the UK and France. “This is something that is going to have to be handled a different way,” he warned. Develay’s work, titled ‘Foreign Entanglements: Ukraine, Biden & the Fractured American Political Consensus’ is set for public release on Wednesday.

Webb Burisma

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“..the ability of illegal migrants to cross the US-Mexico border and claim asylum without showing any identification “has turned America into a refuge for the world’s worst criminals.”

Musk Warns Of Terrorist Threat To US (RT)

Elon Musk has warned that a terrorist attack on the scale of September 11, 2001 could take place in the US unless the crisis at the southern border and the uncontrolled influx of migrants is addressed. The Tesla and SpaceX CEO made the remarks in response to an X post by former Republican presidential candidate and businessman Vivek Ramaswamy, who called for mass deportations and the sealing of the US-Mexico border. “Even if only 0.1% of illegal aliens who’ve crossed our border have hostile intentions, that’s tens of thousands of would-be attackers,” Ramaswamy pointed out, suggesting that unless special attention is paid to the issue, “we’re paving the way for another 9/11-scale tragedy.” Musk replied, saying it is “only a matter of time” before such a disaster unfolds.

Previously, the billionaire argued that the ability of illegal migrants to cross the US-Mexico border and claim asylum without showing any identification “has turned America into a refuge for the world’s worst criminals.” His claim followed reports that Venezuela’s homicide rate had dropped to its lowest in 22 years – with some suggesting this was due to Venezuelan gangs moving to the US. Meanwhile, a Politico report published last month suggested that US President Joe Biden was considering offering permanent residency to millions of illegal immigrants. Musk responded to the news by accusing the US Democratic party of intentionally opening up the southern border in order to “import voters.”

There are currently thought to be around 10.5 million illegal immigrants living in the US, according to data compiled by Pew Research in 2021. However, according to figures from the Department of Homeland Security, at least 6.3 million more have entered the US in the years since. In February, Musk claimed Biden’s plan to keep the Democrats in power was a “very simple” one, which involves getting “as many illegals in the country as possible,” then legalizing those people “to create a permanent majority.” The state of the US-Mexico border has become one of the key issues in US politics over the past year amid a historic influx of millions of immigrants. Republican lawmakers have been demanding tighter controls and more money to be set aside to deal with the border crisis, prompting them to use a multi-billion-dollar aid package for Ukraine as leverage.

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“A lot of people still run under the illusion that the legacy newspapers they read are actually true. There is so much nonsense in them..”

No Russian Misinfo On X, But Western Influence Ops Present – Musk (RT)

The owner of X (formerly Twitter), Elon Musk, has rejected accusations that Russian misinformation was widespread on his platform. The entrepreneur, who describes himself as a champion of free speech, has been accused of making the social network vulnerable to Russian activities by changing its content moderation protocols after purchasing Twitter in 2022. His latest denial came on Tuesday, while he was discussing X on ‘In Good Company’, a podcast. Host Nicolai Tangen suggested that Russian activity via fake accounts was “huge” in Germany. “We don’t see a lot of Russian activity, to be frank, on the system. We see very little,” Musk responded. “We do see a lot of attempts to influence things, but they seem to be coming from the West, not from Russia.”

Tangen’s remark apparently referred to claims made by Berlin in January. The German government said that the use of specialized monitoring software had allowed it to identify an estimated 50,000 fake accounts engaged in a pro-Russian misinformation campaign on X. Local press claimed that the messaging was strikingly similar to that of the right-wing opposition party AfD. Germany is not alone in its wariness regarding Moscow’s influence; this week US Congressman Mike Turner, who chairs the House Intelligence Committee, accused some fellow Republicans of repeating ‘Russian propaganda’ in the chamber.

“It is absolutely true we see, directly coming from Russia, attempts to mask communications that are anti-Ukraine and pro-Russia messages, some of which we even hear being uttered on the House floor,” the Ohio congressman told CNN’s Jake Tapper. Similar remarks came last week from House Foreign Affairs chair Michael McCaul, another Republican lawmaker. In his interview, Musk hailed X as arguably “the best source of truth on the Internet” that, he argued, by far surpasses traditional news outlets in terms of accuracy thanks to user-driven fact-checking tools. “A lot of people still run under the illusion that the legacy newspapers they read are actually true. There is so much nonsense in them,” he lamented.

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“We need to get our employees in Brazil to a safe place or otherwise not in a position of responsibility, then we will do a full data dump..”

Musk: Starlink Free for Brazil Schools If Government Cancels Contract (ET)

SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has said he will provide Starlink services free of charge for schools in Brazil if the government chooses to follow through and cancel a contract for the service in the country. Many schools in Brazil have reported using the company to provide internet access to their citizens. Starlink terminals connect to the company’s satellites in low Earth orbit and provide high-speed communications. Brazil’s government has reportedly announced plans to suspend all contracts with Starlink. Prompting Mr. Musk to offer the service free of charge. “Starlink will provide free Internet for schools in Brazil if the government won’t honor their contract,” he said in an April 8 social media post. The moves come amid a growing stoush between social media company X, also owned by Mr. Musk, and the Brazilian government.

According to an April 6 post on the platform, the global affairs team announced they were being “forced by court decisions to block certain popular accounts in Brazil.” “We do not know the reasons these blocking orders have been issued. We do not know which posts are alleged to violate the law. We are prohibited from saying which court or judge issued the order, or on what grounds,” the post said. The global affairs team claimed the company had been threatened with fines if they didn’t comply with the order. They also said they were unable to provide a list of which accounts were impacted. “We believe that such orders are not in accordance with the Marco Civil da Internet or the Brazilian Federal Constitution, and we challenge the orders legally where possible,” the post from the global affairs team said.

“The people of Brazil, regardless of their political beliefs, are entitled to freedom of speech, due process, and transparency from their own authorities.” The announcement came after a report by investigative journalist Michael Shellenberger and colleagues David Ágape and Eli Vieira, titled “Twitter Files Brazil.” Mr. Shellenberger said that sitting members of Brazil’s Congress and journalists were among those named by Brazil’s highest court for censorship. He has shared his findings on X. Mr. Musk announced soon after he had removed all content restrictions in Brazil in defiance of the order.

[..] Mr. Musk has made serious allegations of corruption against Justice de Moraes and Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva. In a follow-up April 8 post, Mr. Musk claims that events have since escalated and all Twitter Brazil employees are in danger of arrest. Once safe, he will release the information proving his allegations. “We need to get our employees in Brazil to a safe place or otherwise not in a position of responsibility, then we will do a full data dump,” he said. “They have been told they will be arrested. Save the Brazilian X employees.”

https://twitter.com/i/status/1777796067225989299

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“A second AI system, sadistically named “Where’s Daddy?”—and how sick is this?—was then used to track Hamas suspects to their homes..”

‘Automated Murder’: Israel’s ‘AI’ in Gaza (Patrick Lawrence)

ZURICH—“Technological change, while it helps humanity meet the challenges nature imposes upon us, leads to a paradigm shift: It leaves us less capable, not more, of using our intellectual capacities. It diminishes our minds in the long run. We strive to improve ourselves while risking a regression to the Stone Age if our ever more complex, ever more fragile technological infrastructure collapses.” That is Hans Köchler, an eminent Viennese scholar and president of the International Progress Organization, a globally active think tank, addressing an audience here last Thursday evening, April 4. The date is significant: The day before Köchler spoke, +972 Magazine and Local Call, independent publications in Israel–Palestine, reported that as the Israel Defense Forces press their savage invasion of the Gaza Strip, they deploy an artificial intelligence program called Lavender that so far has marked some 37,000 Palestinians as kill targets.

In the early weeks of the Israeli siege, according to the Israeli sources +972 cites, “the army gave sweeping approval for officers to adopt Lavender’s kill lists, with no requirement to thoroughly check why the machine made those choices or to examine the raw intelligence data on which they were based.” Chilling it was to hear Köchler speak a couple of news cycles after +972 published these revelations, which are based on confidential interviews with six Israeli intelligence officers who have been directly involved in the use of AI to target Palestinians for assassination. “To use technologies to solve all our problems reduces our ability to make decisions,” Köchler asserted. “We’re no longer able to think through problems. They remove us from real life.” Köchler titled his talk “The Trivialization of Public Space,” and his topic, broadly stated, was the impact of technologies such as digital communications and AI on our brains, our conduct, and altogether our humanity.

It was sobering, to put the point mildly, to recognize that Israel’s siege of Gaza, bottomlessly depraved in itself, is an in-our-faces display of the dehumanizing effects these technologies have on all who depend on them. Let us look on in horror, and let us see our future in it. We see in the IDF, to make this point another way, a rupture in morality, human intelligence, and responsibility when human oversight is mediated by the algorithms that run AI systems. There is a break between causality and result, action and consequence. And this is exactly what advanced technologies have in store for the rest of humanity. Artificial intelligence, as Köchler put it, is not intelligence: “It is ‘simulated intelligence’ because it has no consciousness of itself.” It isn’t capable, he meant to say, of moral decision-making or ethical accountability.

In the Lavender case, the data it produced were accepted and treated as if they had been generated by a human being without any actual human oversight or independent verification. A second AI system, sadistically named “Where’s Daddy?”—and how sick is this?—was then used to track Hamas suspects to their homes. The IDF intentionally targeted suspected militants while they were with their families, using unguided missiles or “dumb” bombs. This strategy had the advantage of enabling Israel to preserve its more expensive precision-guided weapons, or “smart” bombs. As one of +972’s sources told the magazine: “We were not interested in killing [Hamas] operatives only when they were in a military building or engaged in a military activity… . On the contrary, the IDF bombed them in homes without hesitation, as a first option. It’s much easier to bomb a family’s home. The system is built to look for them in these situations.”

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BUT: “.. if Kiev gets the money, “they will win the war and beat Russia.”

Ukraine ‘Losing The War’ – Chuck Schumer (RT)

Ukraine is failing on the battlefield because of a lack of American funding, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said on Monday. He demanded the House Republicans pass the $61 billion aid bill as soon as possible. Schumer, a New York Democrat, brought up Ukraine in a speech about the upcoming US legislative agenda. The Democrat-majority Senate passed the funding proposal in mid-February, but the Republican-majority House has not voted on it yet. “The situation in Ukraine is desperate,” Schumer said, claiming that the funding bill has been “collecting dust” for 55 days while “our friends in Ukraine fight and die on the battlefield with no support.” With each passing day, Ukraine is running out of more soldiers, ammunition and hope, he added. “Let’s be blunt: the biggest reason Ukraine is losing the war is because the hard-right in the Congress has paralyzed the US from acting. That’s it, that’s the reason,” Schumer said.

By passing the bill, House Speaker Mike Johnson would “do the right thing for Ukraine, for America, and for democracy,” the New York Democrat argued. Otherwise, he claimed, the Republicans would hand a “large victory” to Russian President Vladimir Putin. Schumer made much the same argument while visiting Ukraine in late February, claiming that if Kiev gets the money, “they will win the war and beat Russia.” Democrats have sought to split the GOP into “moderates” and “MAGA Republicans” – referring to former US President Donald Trump’s campaign slogan ‘Make America Great Again’ – to get support for their legislative agenda in both chambers of Congress. The tactic has paid off in the Senate, where 22 Republicans voted in favor of funding Ukraine, more than offsetting three Democrats who were opposed.

Republicans currently have a razor-thin majority in the 435-member House, with 218 seats to the Democrats’ 213. Johnson became speaker in late October, after a group of disgruntled GOP lawmakers voted to oust his predecessor Kevin McCarthy for striking a secret deal with the Democrats to pass Ukraine funding. The US has provided Ukraine with $113 billion in various forms of assistance since the start of hostilities. Meanwhile, Russia has repeatedly condemned Western arms shipments to Ukraine, saying these will only prolong the conflict, while making the West a direct participant in the hostilities.

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Everybody knows.

Ukrainian NATO Membership ‘Fundamentally Unacceptable’ – Moscow (RT)

Ukrainian accession to NATO would pose a threat to Russia’s national security and is fundamentally unacceptable, Moscow’s ambassador to the US, Anatoly Antonov, has said. The Russian envoy was responding to comments by US State Department spokesman Matthew Miller, who claimed at a press briefing on Monday that Kiev could become a member of the military bloc once the conflict with Moscow has ended. “Ukraine’s accession to NATO is unacceptable to us under any circumstances,” Antonov stated on Tuesday. “This is a threat to Russia’s national security.” “Only politicians ignorant of the fundamental interests of the Russian Federation can expect that we could accept Kiev’s entry into a bloc which is hostile to us,” he added. Antonov further accused Washington of ignoring Moscow’s core interests and refusing to accept Russia’s “categorical opposition” to Kiev’s potential NATO membership.

Speaking at a NATO foreign ministers meeting in Brussels last week, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken insisted that Ukraine will be allowed to join the bloc, claiming that the commitment of its members to Kiev remains “rock solid.” The purpose of NATO’s next summit in July will be to “help build a bridge to that membership and to create a clear pathway for Ukraine moving forward,” Blinken added. Russia has for years voiced concern about NATO’s expansion toward its borders, viewing the US-led bloc’s policies as an existential threat. Russian President Vladimir Putin has warned for nearly two decades that NATO’s eastward expansion undermines Russian national security, and that moving the bloc’s forces into Ukraine would cross a “red line.” According to Antonov, Moscow offered the West a diplomatic way to defuse tensions over NATO expansion and Ukraine in 2021, but the appeal was rejected by Washington.

Arestovich

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All this ‘pre-war’ talk is crazy irresponsible. Kick ’em by the curb.

‘High-Intensity War In Europe No Longer A Fantasy’ – Borrell (RT)

A full-scale military conflict in Europe has become more likely due to the standoff with Russia, the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Josep Borrell, has claimed, while warning member states against relying on the US to defend them. Several other European officials have cited a heightened military threat in recent months, with UK Defense Secretary Grant Shapps saying last week that the world is moving from a “post-war to a pre-war” state due to the alleged threat emanating from Russia, China, Iran and North Korea. Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk made a similar “pre-war” assessment in March. Speaking at a Forum Europa gathering in Brussels on Tuesday, Borrell claimed that the “possibility of a high-intensity conventional war in Europe is no longer a fantasy” and that the bloc must “do everything to avoid it”.

The EU’s top diplomat alleged that Russia poses a growing threat to the continent, citing the conflict with Ukraine, and accused Moscow of seeking to destabilize the union. According to Borrell, while a military conflict in Europe is not imminent and “not going to start tomorrow,” citizens should understand that the “US umbrella that has protected us during the Cold War and after, may not be open all the time.” “Maybe, depending on who is ruling Washington, we cannot rely on the Americans’ support and American capacity to protect us,” he said. Describing the EU as being surrounded by a “ring of fires” and instability, Borrell called on member states to become more self-sufficient with their security and to ramp up their defense spending.

He added that while NATO is as “irreplaceable” as ever, Europeans should start building their own “pillar” within the US-led bloc. The diplomat acknowledged that Brussels’ stance on the conflicts in Gaza and in Ukraine is not fully shared by many non-Western audiences. Borrel’s remarks follow suggestions from numerous Western civilian and military officials in recent months that Russia could attack NATO within a few years. Speaking in late March, Russian President Vladimir Putin dismissed such speculation as “nonsense.” He argued that talk of a potential Russian attack on Poland, the Czech Republic, or the Baltic countries is propaganda coming from governments that seek to scare their citizens “to extract additional expenses from people, to make them bear this burden on their shoulders.”

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China’s been saying this for a while, but not many in the west seem to know it.

China Sending Message That ‘It Has Russia’s Back’ If West Escalates (Sp.)

On Tuesday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov met with Chinese President Xi Jinping, sending a strong message to the West that the two countries will continue their strategic relationship. The meeting came a day after US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen traveled to China and warned it against partnering with Russia. The meeting between Lavrov and Xi, particularly right after Yellen’s visit, is a “message” to the West that China “will have the back of Russia” if the conflict in Ukraine is escalated by the West, lawyer and journalist Dimitri Lascarus told Sputnik’s The Critical Hour on Wednesday. “The timing of announcements such as these tell you a lot,” Lascarus said, pointing to not only Yellen’s visit but the increasingly provocative attacks on Russia by Ukraine’s intelligence services such as the mass shooting outside of Moscow which Russia has blamed Ukraine and its backers in the US and UK for, among other provocations.

“Of course, we have this ongoing drama with little Napoleon in France [French President] Emmanuel Macron, talking about sending a few thousand French troops to their deaths in Odessa,” Lascarus recalled. “I wouldn’t be surprised at all if it has been interpreted by both the Russian and Chinese governments as an attempt to provoke Russia into a direct attack on a NATO country.” “I think [China is] sending a message that China will have the back of Russia if this escalates. And, no one should have any illusions about that,” Lascarus explained. “They see, I believe, that there is a series of escalations happening here and there are no adults in the room, and they need to send an unequivocal signal that China will have Russia’s back in the event that this escalates out of control,” he added.

While neither government has any “reservations about the necessity” of their alliance, Lascarus argued that the West is forcing them to strengthen their relationship because of its aggressive actions. “Every day, Western governments are acting in a way which makes this partnership even more compelling to the Russian and Chinese governments.” With public sentiment turning against the “Ukrainian disaster” in both Europe and the US, Lascarus noted that polls show that the vast majority of French citizens think the country is heading in the wrong direction. “[France] has been one of the primary architects of this disastrous neocon policy in Ukraine,” he explained. “So we’re seeing already, that the political days of these characters are all numbered.” “The real question we have to confront as citizens of the West is, do we have an actual, competent, ethical, and principled alternative to these people? I don’t know that we do. But one thing is for sure, the public has enough and they’re on the way out the door.”

Lavrov
https://twitter.com/i/status/1777580903339876516

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“..to literally take over these social networks, [which] all these big tech people thought was going to be this lovely garden of earthly delights and turn it into a prison.”

‘Russiagate’ About Seizing Power as Much as Stopping Trump (Sp.)

On Sunday, US Rep. and chair of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence Michael R. Turner (R-OH) claimed that it is “absolutely true” that members of the US Republican party are repeating “pro-Russia messages” on the House floor, without naming the members. The US establishment disproven conspiracy that former US President Donald Trump was controlled by the Kremlin is about seizing control of social media and the internet as much as it is designed to harm Trump’s political ambitions, Serbian-American journalist and columnist Nebojsa Malic told Sputnik’s Fault Lines on Tuesday. Malic argues that the “completely fabricated” Russiagate conspiracy was “not just to sabotage the Trump presidency, but to literally take over these social networks, [which] all these big tech people thought was going to be this lovely garden of earthly delights and turn it into a prison.”

Last year, a panel of federal judges ruled that the US intelligence agencies’ contact with social media companies, urging them to take down specific posts and block or ban certain users, likely constituted government censorship. The administration of US President Joe Biden has appealed the case to the Supreme Court. “Russiagate was the pretext that started this entire ball rolling, and it wasn’t even based on anything real. And now they want to do it all over again,” Malic explained. “I was listening to [Senate Majority Leader, Senator] Chuck Schumer (D-NY) speak yesterday about how Ukraine is losing the war because [House Speaker, Rep.] Mike Johnson (R-LA) doesn’t want to give them money. No, Ukraine is losing the war because it has always been [losing] because it is fighting an industrial war it cannot win,” Malic continued. “The West can’t win because it doesn’t have the industrial capabilities because in the past 30 years, we shut down our industry and turned everything over to finance, but Chuck Schumer is too thick to understand that.”

The reality on the ground in Ukraine has turned many against US support for NATO’s proxy war in Russia, with more Americans (37%) saying the US spends too much on Ukraine than too little (27%) and only 13% responded that they were either “extremely confident” or “very confident” Ukraine will defeat Russia, compared to 49% who say they are “Not too confident” or “Not confident at all.” People are asking “How is this helping freedom and democracy, exactly?” Malic contended. “And [the establishment’s] response is ‘shut up, Russian Agent.’” “This is a breakdown. Because, again, the blob’s agenda is to use Russia’s phantom menace for a power grab at home on one hand, and to push for this geopolitical fantasy that Russia needs Ukraine to be a global empire,” Malic said, explaining that Russia doesn’t want a global empire.

“They voluntarily dissolved the Soviet Union in ‘91, believing all of these stories about freedom and democracy and capitalism and human rights, and they got taken advantage of. Demographically, the country was worse off in the ‘90s than during World War Two,” Malic explained. “When we talk about the golden age of the 1990s, post-Cold War, freedom, democracy, transition from socialism, this is a horror story to these people and nobody in America seems to understand this because they didn’t live through it.” However, Malic said that it is “theoretically possible” that the “blob” actually wants Trump to win the election to give them an excuse to get out of Ukraine. “Maybe they want to get out of this Ukrainian quagmire and blame somebody else for it. They might want Trump to get elected so they can say ‘Okay, well, it’s all his fault. Had we kept the Democrats in power, we would have totally won the war. But, oh, well, what can we do? We just have to move on to the next war,’ which will be China.”

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“..from 1789 to 2023, no former or sitting president has faced criminal charges for their official acts, and for good reason..”

Jack Smith Urges SCOTUS to Reject Trump’s Presidential Immunity Claim (ET)

Special counsel Jack Smith in his final filing before the hearing is urging the Supreme Court to reject former President Donald Trump’s presidential immunity claim and deny any motions to delay a trial on charges related to the 2020 federal election conspiracy case. Prosecutors from the DOJ allege President Trump attempted to overturn the 2020 election result on Jan. 6, 2021, charging him with four counts of conspiracy and obstruction. Former President Trump has denied he did anything wrong by calling for transparency and audits of the vote counts in swing states, and maintains presidential immunity for his actions on that day, which prevents prosecution for any actions he took while still in the top job. In a fresh court brief on April 8, Mr. Smith pressed that President Trump’s argument for presidential immunity over official acts as president has no grounding in the Constitution, the nation’s history, or Americans’ understanding that presidents are not above the law.

“The President’s constitutional duty to take care that the laws be faithfully executed does not entail a general right to violate them,” Mr. Smith said in the brief. “The Framers never endorsed criminal immunity for a former President, and all Presidents from the Founding to the modern era have known that after leaving office they faced potential criminal liability for official acts.” According to Mr. Smith, former President Richard Nixon’s official conduct revealed during the Watergate scandal is the closest historical precedent for this situation. Mr. Smith says President Nixon eventually accepted a pardon from his successor, former President Gerald Ford, and that “his acceptance of a pardon implied his and President Ford’s recognition that a former President was subject to prosecution.”

“Since Watergate, the Department of Justice has held the view that a former President may face criminal prosecution, and Independent and Special Counsels have operated from that same understanding,” he said. Mr. Smith claims that despite President Trump’s claim of presidential immunity, all former presidents knew and wholly understood they were open to facing criminal charges for conduct while in the White House. [..] “The effective functioning of the presidency does not require that a former president be immune from accountability for these alleged violations of federal criminal law,” he said. “To the contrary, a bedrock principle of our constitutional order is that no person is above the law, including the president.”

Former President Trump has continued to argue that official acts by presidents should have immunity from criminal prosecution. Last month, he asked the Supreme Court to hold that he and other former presidents enjoy absolute criminal immunity from prosecution for official acts during their time in office. According to him, from 1789 to 2023, no former or sitting president has faced criminal charges for their official acts, and for good reason. “The President cannot function, and the Presidency itself cannot retain its vital independence if the President faces criminal prosecution for official acts once he leaves office,” President Trump’s brief to the Court says. “The threat of future prosecution and imprisonment would become a political cudgel to influence the most sensitive and controversial Presidential decisions, taking away the strength, authority, and decisiveness of the Presidency.”

[..] the Court has historically upheld a level of presidential independence and ruled in the 1982 decision of Nixon v. Fitzgerald that a president enjoys absolute immunity from civil liability for acts that fall within the “outer perimeter” of his official duties. A secondary issue that may be addressed is the demarkation between personal and official acts during President Trump’s tenure, and a possible separation of actions he can be prosecuted for, and actions covered by presidential immunity. The outcome for the case could impact President Trump’s other legal battles, in which he also argues presidential immunity as a defense. A federal appeals court recently ruled that several civil cases against President Trump related to Jan. 6 could go forward, finding that the actions cited personal acts of a candidate rather than official acts of a president. The question whether this immunity applies to former presidents is also new territory.

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He gets blamed for adhering to the Supreme Court decision.

“I blame myself for Lindsey Graham, because the only reason he won in the Great State of South Carolina is because I Endorsed him!”

Trump Body-Slams Lindsey Graham For Insisting On Nationwide Abortion Limit (ZH)

South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham dared to criticize Donald Trump’s new stance advocating that abortion law should be left to individual states — and was promptly subjected to withering fire from the former president. On Monday morning, Trump posted a video in which he implicitly rejected the idea of creating a federal limit on abortions, saying that, in the wake of the Supreme Court’s Dobbs decision that overturned Roe v Wade, abortion is now a state-by-state issue: “States will determine by vote or legislation or perhaps both, and whatever they decide must be the law of the land; in this case, the law of the state. Many states will be different…many will have a different number of weeks, or some will [be] more conservative than others, and that’s what they will be. At the end of the day, this is all about the will of the people.”

The announcement disappointed proponents of a federal ban who had been encouraged by February media reports that Trump had told his advisors and others that he favored a 16-week federal limit on abortions, with exceptions for rape, incest or to save the mother’s life. Graham quickly posted a tweet-thread declaring his “respectful” disagreement with Trump’s new stance, saying that a states’ rights rationale against a federal limit “will age about as well as the Dred Scott decision,” which helped perpetuate slavery. Trump responded via Truth Social, writing that “Senator Lindsey Graham is doing a great disservice to the Republican Party, and to our Country.” He elaborated on the political realities: “[Democrats] love this Issue, and they want to keep it going for as long as Republicans will allow them to do so. Terminating Roe v. Wade was, according to all Legal Scholars, a Great Event, but sometimes with Great Events come difficulties. Many Good Republicans lost Elections because of this Issue, and people like Lindsey Graham, that are unrelenting, are handing Democrats their dream of the House, Senate, and perhaps even the Presidency…”

A few hours later, Trump was back for more, this time chiding both Graham and Marjorie Dannensfelser, who leads SBA Pro-Life America. Dannensfelser had issued a statement saying her organization was “deeply disappointed in President Trump’s position.” With that particular scolding message, Trump took a more philosophical tack, saying Graham and Dannensfelser “should study the 10th Amendment.” A cornerstone of federalism, that final component of the Bill of Rights states that “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.” By deferring to the states on abortion, Trump is taking the truly “conservative” position on the issue, compared to those who advocate for national regulation. As James Madison summed up the federal system:

“The powers delegated by the proposed Constitution to the federal government are few and defined. Those which are to remain in the State governments are numerous and indefinite. [Federal powers] will be exercised principally on external objects, as war, peace, negotiation, and foreign commerce… The powers reserved to the several States will extend to all the objects, which, in the ordinary course of affairs, concern the lives, liberties and properties of the people.” In a third Truth Social posting, Trump threw in another jab at Graham while also boasting about the power of a Trump endorsement: “I blame myself for Lindsey Graham, because the only reason he won in the Great State of South Carolina is because I Endorsed him!”

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Live 500 meter high in a flat in a 170km straight-line city. No thanks.

Neom: Saudi Arabia ‘Scales Back’ Goals Of Megacity Project (MEE)

Saudi Arabia has scaled back some of its ambitions for its desert megacity Neom, according to a report by Bloomberg. The $1.5 trillion megacity project, which organisers claim will be 33 times the size of New York City, is due to include a 170km straight-line city. When launching The Line in 2021, the Saudi government had announced that 1.5 million people would be living in the city by 2030. Officials now expect there to be fewer that 300,000 residents by that time, according to a source cited by Bloomberg on Friday. The source said that officials expected only 2.4km of the 170km city to be completed by 2030. As a result of the scaling back, one contractor dismissed some of the workers it employs on site, according to a document seen by Bloomberg.

Neom – part of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 strategy to diversify the economy and move away from oil reliance – is being built in the northwestern Tabuk province. Middle East Eye reported last year that construction was under way on The Line, based on satellite imagery. The Line is due to have no cars or roads, and a high-speed rail service running across the length of the city, Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman announced three years ago. Two parallel, mirrored buildings that are nearly 500 metres tall and 120km wide are also planned as part of the project, according to designs uncovered in 2022.

In addition to the horizontal city, Neom is also touted to include an eight-sided city that floats on water, a ski resort with a folded vertical village, and a Red Sea luxury island resort called Sindalah. The Sindalah project is due to open later this year. Sources told Bloomberg that work was continuing on other parts of the Neom project, and Saudi officials still backed the overall aims of The Line. The sources added that Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund, which is providing most of the funding for the project, has yet to confirm its 2024 budget for Neom. The scaling back of the megacity project comes as the Public Investment Fund cash reserves dropped to $15bn in September, its lowest levels since 2020.

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Fell just 2%? Barely a tumble.

Boeing Shares Tumble After NYT Reveals Whistle-Blower Report (ZH)

Shares of Boeing are moving lower in early afternoon trade following a report from The New York Times of an engineer at the airplane manufacturer turned whistle-blower, revealing that sections of the 787 Dreamliner fuselage are improperly fastened together, posing structural integrity risks. Sam Salehpour, who worked on the 787 Dreamliner fuselage for more than a decade, detailed to NYT in a series of interviews that were packaged into documents and sent to the Federal Aviation Administration that the widebody plane is produced in several large sections by different manufacturers, and not all pieces were the same shape when they were fitted together. He said this could create structural issues over time. On April 17, Senator Richard Blumenthal, a Democrat of Connecticut and the chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee’s investigations subcommittee, will hold a hearing featuring Salehpour to address his concerns about the 787 Dreamliner.

“Repeated, shocking allegations about Boeing’s manufacturing failings point to an appalling absence of safety culture and practices — where profit is prioritized over everything else,” Blumenthal said in a statement. Recall, in 2014, an Al Jazeera undercover report found that workers at the 787 factory in South Carolina were not confident in the plane’s manufacturing quality, with at least one worker callin it “f**king sh*t.” “This is the culture that Boeing has allowed to exist,” Katz said, adding, “This is a culture that prioritizes production of planes and pushes them off the line even when there are serious concerns about the structural integrity of those planes and their production process.” Boeing responded to the NYT report and said it was “fully confident in the 787 Dreamliner,” adding, “These claims about the structural integrity of the 787 are inaccurate and do not represent the comprehensive work Boeing has done to ensure the quality and long-term safety of the aircraft.” Investors were spooked by the report, which is yet another issue for Boeing. Shares in New York tumbled 2% around noon.

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Heroes

 

 

Cloud seeding

 

 

Red Wolf

 

 

Humpback

 

 

Parkour
https://twitter.com/i/status/1777445115415482483

 

 

Swan

 

 

Dolly

 

 

 

 

Support the Automatic Earth in wartime with Paypal, Bitcoin and Patreon.

 

 

 

 

 

Mar 092024
 


Eugène Delacroix Femmes d’Alger (Women of Algiers) 1834

 

And Now There (Really) Are Two… or Three (Denninger)
Col. Macgregor Response to Biden Speech Profoundly Accurate and Important (CTH)
Scott Ritter on Biden’s SOTU: ‘America’s Running Away From Ukraine’ (Sp.)
Medvedev Calls Biden a US Disgrace (TASS)
Tucker Carlson: Biden’s Address to Congress ‘Most Un-American Speech Ever (Sp.)
Is This The Real Reason Why Victoria Nuland Quit? (Strokan)
Biden Tries to Blame Republicans for Coming Loss of Ukraine (Sp.)
China Wants Russia At Ukraine Peace Talks (RT)
We Will Not Be Intimidated By The Kremlin – Greek PM (RT)
Europe Is in Danger of Falling Asleep in Peace and Waking Up in War (Dinisio)
Fearful Electioneering Turbo Charges Western Warmongering (SCF)
Biden Parachutes TV Dinners Into Gaza. Sounds Absurd? It Is (SCF)
DC Court Greenlights Flurry of Jan. 6 Lawsuits Against Trump (ET)
Trump Coughs Up $91 Million Bond, Appeals E. Jean Carroll Defamation Suit (ZH)
Jan 6 Comm. Hid Exonerating Evidence Of Trump’s Push For National Guard (Fed.)

 

 

 

 

Agenda 47

 

 

Brennan

 

 

Rufo

 

 

 

 

OMG
https://twitter.com/i/status/1765912315805757637

 

 

RFK

 

 

 

 

Alex Jones
https://twitter.com/i/status/1765964006924427490

 

 

Mike Benz Assange

 

 

 

 

“..Kennedy is flirting with attempting to get the Libertarian nomination, and the Libertarian party has ballot access for the Presidential ticket in all 50 states..”

And Now There (Really) Are Two… or Three (Denninger)

Haley is out and IMHO good riddance. She was wildly more-dangerous than Victoria Nuland, who is also leaving and there is speculation that’s because an FOIA was filed for records that could implicate her in the Lira’s torture and death in Ukraine; he was of course a very loud critic of Nuland’s views and US Ukraine policy, which got him jailed for what in the US would be considered Constitutionally-protected free speech. I don’t know if Nuland had anything to do with it or not but that’s she’s out is good — what’s not disputable is that pretty-much the entire Ukraine policy since 2014 has been hers, including our sponsorship of Maidan. The destruction there in both material and people is hideous and as with Madame Albright’s myopic view of international relations born of her roots Nuland’s position appears to be equally-driven by personal animus. In my view both should have been jettisoned as soon as that became apparent, but obviously neither was.

That Haley had no path was known a couple of months ago, but eventually no matter how stubborn you are in the face of facts the money runs out because modern politics requires a lot of it, and the people spending it see it as a prop bet with a potential return. When the odds get long enough they stop paying and you stop running, like it or not. This of course means that with Biden being the incumbent and political party doctrine being that sitting Presidents with another term available may not be challenged in the primary it is now a two person race. Well, sort of. There are rumors flying around that Kennedy is flirting with attempting to get the Libertarian nomination, and the Libertarian party has ballot access for the Presidential ticket in all 50 states. Despite his policies being pretty much anything but Libertarian the party, of which I have decent internal knowledge of as I was elected to the EC in Florida, is very likely to embrace this move since it will both bring in money and, assuming he gets any material number of votes, and he will, further-cement their ballot position.

Politics makes for strange compromises sometimes and whether you like it or not that’s never going to change. While I wildly disagree with many of Kennedy’s views I might actually vote for him rather than write in Beelzebub or Cthulhu this November, should he run on the Libertarian ticket. I certainly can’t support Biden nor can I support Trump as on the critical issues facing this nation, all related to the rule of law, neither has delivered anything than a Bronx Cheer, albeit aimed in different directions and to the benefit of, in some cases, different people. I will remind everyone that 8 USC §1324 has been around since long before either Trump or Biden was President and that the Executive, of which the President is the head, has the Department of Justice, AG and FBI under same.

Further, every federal officeholder takes an oath to uphold the Constitution and laws of the United States, including the ones they personally disagree with. There’s a process to change the law if you don’t like it and that process goes through Congress. Said law, were it to be enforced, would absolutely stop all of the illegal immigration games instantly and permanently as it lays out criminal felony penalties, including prison time of 5, 10, 20 and potentially life prison terms, for those who harbor or assist such immigration including those who employ said persons. Since both of the current “mainstream” candidates claim the situation is a critical problem (and I agree with this) but at the same time claim they don’t have the legal tools to deal with it and that is absolutely a lie I will not vote for either of them.

The same applies when it comes to monopolist practices riven through our economy, most-critically in health care as that has the largest impact on the Federal and State budgets. Again, 15 USC Ch. 1 §1-3 makes clear that such conduct, even the mere attempt if it fails, is a criminal felony carrying prison penalties for each person who is engaged in same. That law has been challenged twice to the US Supreme Court in the late 1970s and early 80s (Royal Drug and Maricopa County) and found Constitutional both times. Nonetheless neither major political party has lifted a finger to bring a single criminal charge under that law — not in health care or in any of the other merger and consolidation activities in any industry. Now will Kennedy vow to bring said charges? That would be a reason to vote for him. Of course he might be lying, but then again he might not. I already know the other two have lied and nothing they can say now will cause me to believe them thus “might” beats “won’t.”

There are many who think our markets and economy will chug along through 2024 and that “its just fine.” I argue the data says otherwise; consumer credit has gone vertical, for example, and lates are rising quickly, including in car loans which are more-likely to get paid than a mortgage because without a car you’re not going to work and then everything goes down the toilet for you in your personal financial situation. Thus if you have to screw someone as you simply don’t have the money to pay the last person you usually screw is the car finance company. I’m not dancing in the streets, incidentally, that Trump is the presumptive nominee. The Supreme Court’s 9-0 decision on Colorado the other day probably won’t stop some from trying to interfere in the election, but the Court made quite clear that the decision as to who is President lies with the people as the States and other apparatus, other than through Congress, simply do not have jurisdiction to force a decision other than by individual votes at the ballot box.

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“Macgregor doesn’t go deep in the weeds on this, but what he describes as the economic and financial outcome is entirely accurate.”

Must watch video.

Col. Macgregor Response to Biden Speech Profoundly Accurate and Important (CTH)

The core targets within this information war are those who are talking about the entities who are controlling and directing the politicians and government. The voices who are considered a threat are not, repeat NOT, voices who are critical of government. The voices who are considered a threat are those who understand the government actors are controlled and intentionally presented as the false source of the problem. Just as Jack Smith is not the controlling entity organizing the targeting of Donald Trump, so too is Joe Biden (and the administration) not the originating entity who organized the Western sanction regime against Russia. Jack Smith and Joe Biden are essentially actors, vessels following a design that has been created by outside government entities for the purpose of targeting Donald Trump and/or Russia respectively. The bigger motives and intents of targeting both are essentially the same. There are trillions at stake.

Outside government actors like Mary McCord, Norm Eisen, Andrew Weissmann and crew are the organizers behind Jack Smith’s effort. They are the characters who coordinate with Fani Willis (GA) and Letishia James (NY). Those individuals are funded by outside government institutions. Ultimately, Jack Smith is the vessel. Within the Western finance system, Blackrock, Vanguard, the WEF and a host of similarly aligned massive financial interests are the organizers behind the Russian sanction regime. The USA government is the vessel. FOLLOW THE MONEY…. This is one of the reasons why the entire political establishment is behind support for Ukraine. Blackrock, Vanguard, State Street and a host of massive financial interests are the funding mechanism for U.S. politicians. The various Western governments and politicians are the vessels, not the originating sources of these policies. Macgregor doesn’t go deep in the weeds on this, but what he describes as the economic and financial outcome is entirely accurate.

Macgregor
https://twitter.com/i/status/1766089825273164037

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“Biden didn’t walk away from Ukraine. He ran away from there, straight into issues about domestic politics because it’s a campaign address, not a State of the Union speech..”

Scott Ritter on Biden’s SOTU: ‘America’s Running Away From Ukraine’ (Sp.)

“Instead of a State of the Union address, the US Congress and indeed the American people were treated to a rousing campaign speech which POTUS was using to kick off the 2024 presidential election campaign,” former US Marine Corps intelligence officer and independent military analyst Scott Ritter told Sputnik. Biden “is facing the presumptive Republican nominee, former US President Donald Trump, in what many expect to be a very hot, very controversial and heated contest for who will be the next president of the United States. Joe Biden let off this State of the Union address, this campaign speech, by speaking about Ukraine, and about Russia, and about Russian President Vladimir Putin,” Ritter said. Quoting POTUS as saying during the address that America “will not walk away from Ukraine,” Ritter noted that “in many ways, the 46th US president is right.”

“Biden didn’t walk away from Ukraine. He ran away from there, straight into issues about domestic politics because it’s a campaign address, not a State of the Union speech,” the ex-US Marine Corps intelligence officer insisted. He suggested that Biden hinted at the necessity of releasing the $64 billion funding package during the Thursday speech “because it’s tied to domestic American politics and perhaps the most contentious issue of the day, that is border security immigration reform.” The $64 billion package is “being held hostage by Republicans in the House of Representatives. […] If Biden isn’t going to change his approach to immigration, the Republicans aren’t going to release the money – Ukraine isn’t going to get the assistance it needs,” according to the analyst. “America’s running away from Ukraine. And that’s the reality,” Ritter argued, adding that “people need to understand” that the next months will see Biden “almost singularly focused on domestic American policy, trying to differentiate himself from Donald Trump.”

SOTU 2022 23 24
https://twitter.com/i/status/1766125803790794762

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“.. Biden is a “mad, mentally disabled individual who set his mind on dragging humanity to hell.”

Medvedev Calls Biden a US Disgrace (TASS)

US President Joe Biden should not have mentioned his predecessor Franklin Delano Roosevelt, because, unlike Roosevelt, he only disgraces the US, Russian Security Council Deputy Chairman Dmitry Medvedev said, commenting on the State of the Union address. “In the State of the Union address, Biden compared himself with Franklin Delano Roosevelt. That’s a so-so comparison. Obviously, not in his favour,” Medvedev said on his X page. ” He is the United States’ disgrace!” Medvedev pointed out that, even though the 32nd US President was an infirm man in a wheelchair, “he raised America from the Depression,” while Biden is a “mad, mentally disabled individual who set his mind on dragging humanity to hell.” In addition, the official continued, Roosevelt fought for peace together with allies, including the USSR, while “Biden is actively and persistently trying to start WWIII.” Finally, Roosevelt “was fighting against fascists, but Biden is fighting for them,” Medvedev concluded.

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“There is lie after lie. ‘Ukraine can stop Russia.’ No, it can’t. This has been going on for over two years. ‘NATO is stronger than ever.’ No, it is not … It was crazy talk..”

Tucker Carlson: Biden’s Address to Congress ‘Most Un-American Speech Ever (Sp.)

US journalist Tucker Carlson on Friday called President Joe Biden’s State of the Union address to Congress “possibly the darkest, most un-American speech” ever delivered by a US president, saying that it had been focused not on US’s national interests, but on pouring billions of dollars into military aid to Ukraine. “That was possibly the darkest, most un-American speech ever given by an American president,” Carlson said during a broadcast published on his X account, calling Biden a “cruel and vicious demagogue.” The US journalist described the president’s address as a “lie,” saying that Biden “quickly explained” that his top priority “has nothing to do with America” and was related to “sending billions more to Ukraine.” “There is lie after lie. ‘Ukraine can stop Russia.’ No, it can’t. This has been going on for over two years. ‘NATO is stronger than ever.’ No, it is not … It was crazy talk,” Carlson said.

Tucker Speaker
https://twitter.com/i/status/1766024481053552951

On Thursday, Biden delivered the State of the Union address to the US Congress. The speech comes amid Washington’s efforts to provide further aid to Ukraine for use in its conflict with Russia. However, some Republican lawmakers have called on Congress and the Biden administration to address border security before approving more foreign aid. The president called on the US Congress to pass a $118 billion foreign aid bill that includes border policy reforms. The bill was blocked by Senate Republicans last month over concerns it did not do enough to resolve the border crisis. Biden also said that his policies are designed to keep drug cartels and human smugglers from profiting off the border crisis.

CNN SOTU

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“..the second place in the State Department went not to the greatest hater of Russia, but to the greatest hater of China..”

Is This The Real Reason Why Victoria Nuland Quit? (Strokan)

According to Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova, Nuland was forced to resign because of the failure of Biden’s course on Russia. “This is a failure of the policy associated with Nuland, because she was the central figure who pursued a Russophobic policy towards our country, the whole story was tied to Nuland,” Zakharova said. According to her, the outgoing US deputy secretary of state was “not just a high-ranking representative of the State Department, but a key figure in US interagency cooperation.” “She was a coordinator of anti-Russian sentiment and anti-Russian policy by the United States, especially in the context of Ukraine. I can’t say that she was an ideologue. There are people out there who hate us more, but she really was a coordinator, she is associated with that policy. And that is how they said goodbye to her,” the Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman said. Meanwhile, a theory has emerged in Washington that Nuland’s resignation was the result of a power struggle in which she lost the race for the post of first deputy foreign policy chief.

Some pundits see a battle of narratives, with behind-the-scenes jockeying of personalities. All part of a dispute over the long-term shape of US foreign policy and its priorities. It should be recalled that after Wendy Sherman resigned last summer as US deputy secretary of state, her duties were carried out for six months by Nuland. At the end of last year, however, the White House made the unexpected decision to nominate Campbell, another veteran of American diplomacy, for the second post in the diplomatic service. Campbell, who does not have as big a name in the diplomatic world as Nuland, has made his career not in the Euro-Atlantic but in the Indo-Pacific region. “Ms. Nuland was considered the natural candidate to replace Ms. Sherman on a permanent basis. But Mr Blinken nominated Kurt Campbell, the former National Security Council representative for Asia,” the New York Times commented on the reshuffle.

James Carden, a former US State Department official, told RIA Novosti: “I was actually surprised that she lasted as long as she did. I realised her time was up when Kurt Campbell got the second-ranked job at the department.” In a Senate vote on 6 February, his nomination received broad bipartisan support: 92 senators voted in favour, with five voting against. “President Biden’s choice of Kurt Campbell signals a desire to continue the efforts begun by his predecessors decades ago to shift the focus of US foreign policy to China as the major challenge facing America in the future,” AP commented on the reshuffle. “Kurt Campbell played a key role in developing President Barack Obama’s ‘pivot to Asia’ into President Biden’s Indo-Pacific strategy,” Yuri Tavrovsky, chairman of the expert council of the Russian-Chinese Friendship, Peace and Development Committee, told Kommersant.

“In practical terms, he was particularly active in the creation of the anti-Chinese military bloc AUKUS (Australia, the UK and the US) and in strengthening the military component of the QUAD group (Quadrilateral Security Dialogue – Australia, India, the US and Japan,” Tavrovsky said. “The appointment of Campbell to the second-highest post in the State Department demonstrates the White House’s long-term course of containing China, despite words and gestures that look like a desire for reconciliation.” Thus, according to Mr Tavrovsky, “the second place in the State Department went not to the greatest hater of Russia, but to the greatest hater of China.”

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“I think he’s a true believer and actually believes that his status as Warlord-in-Chief helps him politically..”

Biden Tries to Blame Republicans for Coming Loss of Ukraine (Sp.)

President Joe Biden used his State of the Union speech to blame the Republicans if Russia wins the war in Ukraine by claiming Kiev could have won or survived if the latest $61 billion arms package had not been blocked in Congress, former State Department official and consultant on US-Russia relations James Carden said. “The way I heard the speech was Biden setting the ground to blame the Republicans for losing the war should they block further tranches of funding,” Carden told Sputnik. But Biden was still committed to his confrontational and warmaking policies in Ukraine, the Middle East and elsewhere around the world and showed no sign of wanting to change them, he emphasized. “I think he’s a true believer and actually believes that his status as Warlord-in-Chief helps him politically,” Carden explained.

Biden’s indirect admission that the planned next enormous military aid package for President Volodymyr Zelensky’s increasingly discredited regime in Kiev was blocked on Capitol Hill did not stem from any fundamental reassessment of US policy on backing Ukraine’s war against Russia, he said. Instead, Biden’s comments reflected his always primary concern with domestic politics and his obsession with getting reelected to a second term in November even though he is already 81 years old, Carden clarified. “The results coming out of Michigan, however, disprove his thesis,” Carden said.

Uncommitted voters in the US state of Michigan on Super Tuesday this week registered a protest against Biden and his policies, especially on foreign affairs, security and the invasion of Gaza. Some 100,000 voters, or 20% of those who participated in the Democratic primary alone, cast their ballots as “Uncommitted,” expressing a massive lack of support for the president in his own party with no other serious candidate to choose from. The $61 billion package is being blocked by Republicans in the House of Representatives until Biden changes his policies on illegal immigration and agrees to crack down on it. But because the president is determined not to change course on that, he will not get more aid approved for Kiev, his opponents have said.

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China starts being involved.

China Wants Russia At Ukraine Peace Talks (RT)

China and Switzerland are working behind the scenes to get Russia invited to proposed Swiss-hosted talks aimed at ending the fighting between Kiev and Moscow, the South China Morning Post reported on Friday, citing people familiar with the matter. Last month, Switzerland announced plans to organize a peace summit “by the summer.” No specific date has been named yet. The number of potential participants has also not been revealed. However, Ukraine indicated that Russia can only be invited if it agrees in advance to a litany of preconditions. According to the news website, China’s envoy for Eurasia Li Hui told EU officials that the summit “can’t be a conference that produces a plan that is pushed down the Russians’ throat.” The sources further told the publication that both China and Switzerland share a “pragmatic” view that the negotiations should not be just a formality.

Unlike many Western countries, Beijing has refused to blame Moscow for the outbreak of hostilities in February 2022, and has stressed that the conflict can only be ended through diplomacy. “The earlier the talks start, the sooner peace will arrive,” Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi told reporters at a CCP event in Beijing on Thursday. He added that “the absence of peace talks… may lead to an even bigger crisis.” China proposed a 12-point roadmap to peace in February 2023. The initiative was dismissed by Kiev. Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky has, in turn, insisted that a settlement can only be based on the 10-point ‘peace formula’ he unveiled at the end of 2022. Moscow has rejected Zelensky’s terms as unrealistic, arguing that it will never surrender Crimea, which joined Russia in 2014, or the four former Ukrainian regions that did the same in September 2022.

Ukraine and its Western backers have branded the accession referendums “a sham” and accused Russia of illegally occupying Ukrainian lands. They later said that peace can only be achieved on Kiev’s terms. Russian Ambassador to Switzerland Sergey Garmonin told local media in January 2024 that a peace summit without Russian participation would be “doomed to fail.” Moscow maintains that it is open to negotiations but on acceptable terms. According to the South China Morning Post, Chinese envoy Li told his EU counterparts that Moscow had two preconditions for talks – ending Western arms deliveries to Ukraine and the revocation of Zelensky’s 2022 decree that states negotiations with Putin are “impossible.”

https://twitter.com/i/status/1766184754456506811

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If Russia wanted Zelensky dead, he would be. And they sure wouldn’t kill a Greek PM as well, too messy.

“Do not betray… the memory of the Greek Resistance,” Zakharova urged Mitsotakis..”

We Will Not Be Intimidated By The Kremlin – Greek PM (RT)

The EU will not be intimidated by Russia and will continue to support Ukraine for “as long as it takes,” Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis has said. Mitsotakis made the comment during his speech at the European People’s Party (EPP) conference in Romania’s capital, Bucharest, on Thursday, a day after his visit to the Ukrainian city of Odessa. During that trip, a Russian missile reportedly hit the port of Odessa 800 meters away from the motorcade in which Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky and the Greek PM were traveling. “I was in Odessa yesterday with President Zelensky when a Russian ballistic missile hit the port during our visit to the facility and I think we all have a message for the Kremlin: We shall not be intimidated,” Mitsotakis vowed.

He described the conflict between Russia and Ukraine as “Europe’s darkest hour,” claiming that the EU’s determination to back Kiev and place sanctions on Moscow was “maybe unexpected for some of our enemies.” Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova responded to Mitsotakis’ statements in a post on Telegram on Thursday, insisting that “we [Moscow] never intimidated and aren’t intimidating anybody, including Greece.” She pointed out that Europe was not always the same throughout its history. “The Third Reich was also Europe. And for such a ‘Nazi Europe,’ we will always be an enemy,” the spokeswoman stressed. Zakharova recalled how during music lessons at her Russian school she used to study the works of Mikis Theodorakis, a legendary Greek composer most famous for Sirtaki dance music. “He, too, was an enemy of Europe, Nazi Europe,” she said.

Theodorakis was once a symbol of the resistance to the right-wing military dictatorship known as the Regime of the Colonels, which ruled Greece in the late 1960s and early 1970s. During that time, his music was banned; the composer was imprisoned for five months and eventually forced into exile. “Do not betray… the memory of the Greek Resistance,” Zakharova urged Mitsotakis. The EU has given Ukraine around 88 billion euros ($96.2 billion) since the start of the conflict in February 2022. Russian officials have repeatedly warned that the foreign aid provided to Kiev will not prevent Moscow from achieving the goals of its military operation, and will only prolong the fighting and increase the risk of a direct confrontation between Russia and NATO.

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“If you knew that your power, status and legitimacy emanated from supranational interests, to whom would it be natural to show your loyalty? To the people?”

Europe Is in Danger of Falling Asleep in Peace and Waking Up in War (Dinisio)

No wonder, then, that Ursula herself is so fervently anti-Russian and Atlanticist. Of course, between 1992 and 1996 she lived at Stanford (again Stanford) in California, where she studied economics. Poland’s own Donald Tusk was part of an Independent Students’ Association set up in 1980, financed by the same people as before, which aimed to subvert Poland’s then socialist regime from within the academy. Later, it was members of this truly “independent” “association” who, on the ground, supported the organization of the Orange Revolution in Ukraine. In other words, what we see in Ukraine today is the result of a wide-ranging project to break up and submit Europe to the neoliberal, hegemonic and imperial interests of the USA. This European “shield”, as we can see, is built by a group that functions almost like a secret society, endowed with deep internal cohesion, based on the narcissistic feeling of election, exclusivity and belonging to an elite group, trained to lead, trained to manage the supranational interests of the monopolist state par excellence, the USA.

Now, imagine yourself in a group of people who, in addition to the fact that many belong to the wealthiest classes or the political aristocracy, are also inculcated, through the countless institutional resources at their disposal, with the idea that they are part of a restricted group, placed above the common man, destined to decide on behalf of the monopoly interests that hire them. Imagine that, belonging to such an elite, the common mistake, which normally costs a career, honor and even life, for these people is nothing more than a setback on the way to the top. Put in a position like this, how would they behave? With a sense of responsibility? Or with a total sense of impunity? If you knew that your power, status and legitimacy emanated from supranational interests, to whom would it be natural to show your loyalty? To the people?

The way in which the U.S., and the monopoly interests that make up its system of power, have subverted any idea of strategic autonomy for the EU, throwing us all onto a front line that is not designed to protect our interests, but their own, has consisted of handing over high politics, not to the most experienced statesmen, the most emerging leaders of the masses, or the most capable and competent public officials, but instead to a socially isolated Spartan strain (only in terms of organization, not customs), made up of careerists, incapable of distinguishing between public and private, national or international interests. For them, the interests of public affairs are confused with their own, and their own with those of their sponsors. They are one and the same, in a vicious cycle in which who wins and who loses is determined from the outset.

And if the actions of this privileged, elitist, segregationist and exclusivist group in terms of the European economy have the results in plain sight, when it comes to foreign policy, their actions also show what project their loyalties are expressed for. Victoria Nuland came to Europe to demand a show of support and received it in the form of a Macron who, summoning all the European leaders to the Elysée Palace, tried to discuss the possibility of sending European troops to Ukraine. If it weren’t for Robert Fico, who apparently doesn’t see himself in this select group of yuppies, we wouldn’t know that the leaders in whom the people of Europe are supposed to trust are discussing, behind closed doors and behind the backs of the very democracy with which they fill their mouths, something like the fuse that could ignite a third world war. In other words, they are discussing among themselves the use of Europe as a shield for the American sword, with total contempt for those they claim to govern.

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“Western political leaders are only digging a deeper hole for their eventual collapse..”

Fearful Electioneering Turbo Charges Western Warmongering (SCF)

Western states are facing an acute political crisis whereby their established governing parties and leaders are fighting for survival amid a grave loss in legitimacy in the eyes of their electorates. In the United States, incumbent President Joe Biden is vying for reelection in November with historically lowest poll numbers ever for an occupant of the White House. Meanwhile, across the European Union, governing parties and leaders are braced for a drubbing from parliamentary elections in June. The roots of this unprecedented loss of legitimacy among Western political establishments are manifold. But surely one cause is the rank hypocrisy of Western leaders that has now been laid bare. How can political figures expect to have any moral authority when they are seen to be inveterate liars and shamelessly corrupt? Western governments and their servile media lecture about “democracy”, “human rights” and upholding “law and order”. They claim to be motivated by such principles in their support of Ukraine against alleged Russian aggression.

Yet these same governments are complicit in the genocide of Palestinians in Gaza through their unwavering support for the Israeli regime. Western leaders have been fatally exposed and compromised by the conflict in Ukraine and Gaza. The contradiction is terminal. That’s not just because of the blatant double standards and duplicity. Western voters are increasingly disgusted by the relentless financial and military support funneled into Ukraine to prop up a scamming regime comprised of NeoNazi ideologues. Under Joe Biden and the incumbent European politicians, the West has flooded Ukraine with weapons and hundreds of billions of dollars in what is the biggest war racket ever. This is while Western populations, workers, farmers, and businesses are hard-pressed with numerous social and economic burdens. Western governing parties are rightly seen as elitist and serving powerful minority oligarchic interests such as the military-industrial-corporate-financial nexus. Their declared vows about democracy are a contemptible joke.

The war in Ukraine is increasingly understood by voters to be a disastrous proxy war of choice that was pushed by U.S. and Western imperial objectives to confront Russia. Despite the squandering of public money to propagate the war, the U.S.-led NATO axis has lost its “great game”. The proxy war has devastated Ukraine, causing up to 500,000 military deaths in two years, as well as destabilizing the rest of Europe from increased migration, fiscal impact, deindustrialization, and the shattering of agricultural industries. Western populations are furious with their political leaders for having inflicted such chaos and waste of resources – as well as wantonly provoking tensions in international relations with Russia. Western politicians have pushed the world to the brink of an all-out war between nuclear powers. All this crazed folly is based on utter lies and deception – as the horror of Gaza and Western complicity illustrates. In this cauldron of electoral revolt, Western political leaders are only digging a deeper hole for their eventual collapse.

American President Joe Biden in his State of the Union address this week made a disingenuous pitch to voters. He portrayed the world as facing an existential crisis from Russian “tyranny” and simultaneously claimed the fate of US democracy was under threat from his election rival Donald Trump. In a dangerous and desperate move, Biden is conflating Trump with alleged Russian aggression. The Democrat president is fighting for political survival against Republican presumptive nominee Trump primarily because Biden is so deeply unpopular among American citizens. To boost his election prospects, Biden is making out that the country is facing an “inflection point” that requires rejection of Trump because he is “bowing down” to Russia. Trump and many within the Republican Party are opposed to continuing the proxy war in Ukraine, recognizing that it is futile.

Biden and the Democrats, who are more aligned with the U.S. foreign policy establishment, are therefore trying to make the election about an existential “defense of world democracy and peace”. Biden claimed in his State of the Union address that if the U.S. does not supply Ukraine with another $60 billion more in military aid then Russia will overrun the rest of Europe. Biden even invoked the memory of Roosevelt supposedly facing down Nazi Germany in 1941.

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“..Israel has the green light from this White House to commit the worst and most flagrant genocide since the Second World War..”

Biden Parachutes TV Dinners Into Gaza. Sounds Absurd? It Is (SCF)

It’s a classic American public relations stunt. All show and drama signifying nothing else. President Joe Biden ordered U.S. military transport planes to airdrop food aid into Gaza purportedly to save starving people. Well, they’re starving to death because the United States is supporting the genocidal siege by the Israeli regime of 2.3 million people for nearly five months. The situation is unprecedented, invoking the worst crimes of Nazi Germany. Babies dying in hospitals from lack of food and water. And all due to American support for the Israeli regime carrying out this genocide. But, hey, come on, drop those food parcels. It sort of looks good. The C-130 cargo planes throw bails of ready-made dinners into the sky, which slowly descend on parachutes to the desperate masses on the ground. It’s the kind of Hollywood narcissistic depiction of American greatness always riding to the rescue. Pass the popcorn and soda.

Only when you think about it, the whole airdrop mission is absurdly inadequate. The U.S. Air Force has parachuted in 38,000 dinners to Gaza so far, and more are reportedly on the way. That’s only crumbs for millions of people who are starving to death because the U.S.-backed Israeli regime has blocked the hundreds of food aid trucks that should be entering Gaza daily. When a trickle of aid deliveries are permitted on the ground, the Israeli military has opened deadly fire on hungry Palestinians clambering for relief. International aid agencies have slammed the airdropped relief supplies as an inefficient way to meet the dire humanitarian needs in Gaza. Besides, the real target of the Biden administration’s relief effort is the American people who are disgusted by the complicity of Washington in genocide.

The public relations exercise of parachuting food into Gaza is meant to appease the growing criticism of Biden’s White House. As Joe Biden squares up to Donald Trump in the U.S. presidential election this November, the incumbent Democrat is in real danger of losing. Biden’s poll ratings have been flagging anyway, and especially over the horrendous disaster in Gaza. Younger voters and Muslim Americans who would normally vote Democrat are alienated by Biden’s craven complicity in the Israeli siege of Gaza. For months, Biden has refused to call on the Israeli regime of Benjamin Netanyahu to implement a ceasefire and let humanitarian aid into Gaza. The U.S. has blocked three UN Security Council resolutions demanding a cessation of military operations. In recent days, however, U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris finally voiced support for a ceasefire. And then we see the American Air Force dropping off food supplies.

The belated moves are as cynical as they can get. They’re only motivated by Biden’s political need to bolster his electoral campaign. This week, it was reported that the Biden administration has secretly overseen over 100 separate weapons supply deals to Israel since it began its offensive on Gaza in October. Those sales amount to thousands of munitions including bunker-buster bombs, artillery shells, and other types of lethal ordnance. The transfers have been deliberately kept quiet by Biden owing to the potential public outcry. President Biden and his senior aides like Secretary of State Antony Blinken have refused to impose any conditions on Israel for the use of American weapons. Thus, Israel has the green light from this White House to commit the worst and most flagrant genocide since the Second World War. Not only merely permission but actual material support to enable the horror that has killed over 30,000 people – 70 percent of whom are women and children.

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They’re now saying he was campaigning on Jan 6, so no immunity.

DC Court Greenlights Flurry of Jan. 6 Lawsuits Against Trump (ET)

A federal appeals court in the District of Columbia has issued an order allowing three Jan. 6 lawsuits to proceed against former President Donald Trump after a court rejected his assertion of presidential immunity. A three-judge panel at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit issued an order on March 8, allowing the three consolidated appeals to be “removed from abeyance” and approving motions for summary affirmance, meaning removing a temporary hold on the cases and allowing them to proceed. The lawsuits that are now allowed to proceed are Moore v. Trump, Kirkland v. Trump, and Tabron v. Trump. In all three civil suits, law enforcement officers are seeking damages based on the premise that President Trump incited a mob to storm the Capitol, leading to a violent incident in which they sustained various injuries and suffered harm, including emotional distress.

President Trump has denied calling for violence on Jan. 6, pointing to remarks he made encouraging his supporters to demonstrate “peacefully and patriotically.” The judges noted in their March 8 order that the merits of the three parties’ positions “are so clear as to warrant summary action,” and that the cases can proceed based on a Dec. 1 appeals court decision in Blassingame v. Trump that President Trump is not immune to lawsuits over the Jan. 6, 2021, breach of the U.S. Capitol. In Blassingame v. Trump, the former president’s attorneys had argued that he should be granted immunity because his alleged actions around Jan. 6 amounted to official speech on “matters of public concern.” The judges’ reasoning in that case was that the former president’s actions leading up to and on Jan. 6 were part of his campaign for a second term in the White House and not an official presidential act.

“In arguing that he is entitled to official-act immunity in the cases before us, President Trump does not dispute that he engaged in his alleged actions up to and on January 6 in his capacity as a candidate. But he thinks that does not matter,” U.S. Circuit Judge Sri Srinivasan, appointed under President Barack Obama, wrote in the Dec. 1 ruling. “Rather, in his view, a president’s speech on matters of public concern is invariably an official function, and he was engaged in that function when he spoke at the January 6 rally and in the leadup to that day. We cannot accept that rationale.”

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$91 million just to have the right to appeal a ludicrous case.

Trump Coughs Up $91 Million Bond, Appeals E. Jean Carroll Defamation Suit (ZH)

Former President Trump posted a bond of $91.6 million on Friday while appealing the recent verdict in advice columnist E. Jean Carroll’s defamation lawsuit. “President Trump respectfully requests that this Court recognize the supersedeas bond obtained by President Trump in the sum of $91,630,000.00 and approve it as adequate and sufficient to stay the enforcement of the Judgment, to the extent that the Judgment awards damages, pending the ultimate disposition of President Trump’s appeal,” Trump attorney Alina Habba wrote in court filings. In January, Trump was ordered to pay Carroll $83.3 million for defaming her in 2019, when he denied sexually assaulting her three decades earlier. The decision came after a separate jury ruled that Trump was liable for sexually abusing Carroll, which led to him paying her $5.5 million in cash – which he’ll get back also if he wins on appeal.

Carroll, 80, testified that Trump’s lies destroyed her reputation for telling he truth. “I am here because Donald Trump assaulted me, and when I wrote about it, he said it never happened,” Carroll said, adding “He lied, and it shattered my reputation.” During Trump’s trial, Judge Lewis A. Kaplan and the former president got into frequent verbal altercations – with Kaplan at one point threatening to toss the former president out of the courtroom if he wouldn’t keep his mouth shut. Kaplan also told Habba to “sit down” after she requested an adjournment tomorrow so Trump could attend his mother-in-law’s funeral – a request Kaplan had previously denied. And once Carroll ‘won’ the $83.3 million, she went on a disgusting ‘price is right’ diatribe over how she’ll spend her ‘winnings.’

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“President Trump did in fact offer 10,000 National Guard troops to secure the U.S. Capitol, which was turned down..”

Jan 6 Comm. Hid Exonerating Evidence Of Trump’s Push For National Guard (Fed.)

Former Rep. Liz Cheney’s January 6 Committee suppressed evidence that President Donald Trump pushed for 10,000 National Guard troops to protect the nation’s capital, a previously hidden transcript obtained by The Federalist shows. Cheney and her committee falsely claimed they had “no evidence” to support Trump officials’ claims the White House had communicated its desire for 10,000 National Guard troops. In fact, an early transcribed interview conducted by the committee included precisely that evidence from a key source. The interview, which Cheney attended and personally participated in, was suppressed from public release until now. Deputy Chief of Staff Anthony Ornato’s first transcribed interview with the committee was conducted on January 28, 2022. In it, he told Cheney and her investigators that he overheard White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows push Washington D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser to request as many National Guard troops as she needed to protect the city.

He also testified President Trump had suggested 10,000 would be needed to keep the peace at the public rallies and protests scheduled for January 6, 2021. Ornato also described White House frustration with Acting Secretary of Defense Christopher Miller’s slow deployment of assistance on the afternoon of January 6, 2021. Not only did the committee not accurately characterize the interview, they suppressed the transcript from public review. On top of that, committee allies began publishing critical stories and even conspiracy theories about Ornato ahead of follow-up interviews with him. Ornato was a career Secret Service official who had been detailed to the security position in the White House. Cheney frequently points skeptics of her investigation to the Government Publishing Office website that posted, she said, “transcripts, documents, exhibits & our meticulously sourced 800+ page final report.” That website provides “supporting documents” to the claims made by Cheney and fellow anti-Trump enthusiasts.

However, transcripts of fewer than half of the 1,000 interviews the committee claims it conducted are posted on that site. It is unclear how many of the hidden transcripts include exonerating information suppressed by the committee. Those documents support the committee’s narrative rather than the truth of the events leading up to January 6, 2021, said Rep. Barry Loudermilk, chairman of the House Administration’s Subcommittee on Oversight. “The former J6 Select Committee apparently withheld Mr. Ornato’s critical witness testimony from the American people because it contradicted their pre-determined narrative. Mr. Ornato’s testimony proves what Mr. Meadows has said all along: President Trump did in fact offer 10,000 National Guard troops to secure the U.S. Capitol, which was turned down,” said the Georgia Republican.

His subcommittee is reviewing the work of the January 6 committee, which has been accused of other unethical behavior at the expense of accuracy, as well as collusion with other Democrat efforts to prosecute political opponents. “This is just one example of important information the former Select Committee hid from the public because it contradicted what they wanted the American people to believe,” Loudermilk said. “And this is exactly why my investigation is committed to uncovering all the facts, no matter the outcome.”

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Rothschild

 

 

Mother horse letting the kids play
https://twitter.com/i/status/1765841061853933747

 

 

Porcupine
https://twitter.com/i/status/1765839839973290316

 

 

Eagles
https://twitter.com/i/status/1766114575017971852

 

 

 

 

Pigcasso

 

 

Jaguar Puma

 

 

Kittens

 

 


Found in the Pirin Mountains of southwestern Bulgaria

 

 

Knife-billed puffin..
https://twitter.com/i/status/1766170916298301740

 

 

Hold this

 

 

Helping

 

 

 

 

Support the Automatic Earth in wartime with Paypal, Bitcoin and Patreon.

 

 

 

 

 

Oct 282023
 
 October 28, 2023  Posted by at 8:32 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,  48 Responses »


Francisco de Goya Saturn Devouring His Son 1819–1823

 

The Gods Are Going Against The Chosen People (Helmer)
One Mistake Before Armageddon (Paul Craig Roberts)
Gaza Suffers Near-Total Information Blackout (RT)
Biden Inches Towards Military Disaster in Middle East (Sp.)
Israel Bombing ‘Everything But Hamas In Gaza’ – Jackson Hinkle (RT)
Erdogan’s Deafening Silence On Palestine (Karan)
Orban: EU Not Dare to Admit Ukraine Cannot Win on Battlefield (Sp.)
Israel To Pass Law Allowing State To Kill Its Own Citizens (RT)
Israel Military Shelled Israeli Citizens With Tanks, Missiles on Oct. 7 (GZ)
China To Snub Zelensky’s ‘Peace’ Meeting – Bloomberg (RT)
Hungary, Slovakia Blocked €50 Billion Ukraine Aid – Politico (RT)
Speaker Johnson Plans Separate Votes On Ukraine, Israel Aid (ZH)
Biden Likely Guilty of ‘Impeachable Offenses’ – Speaker (Sp.)
AG Garland Should Rein in Jack Smith’s War on Free Speech (Turley)
President Trump Destroys NYC Judge Engoron After Case Collapses (GP)

 

 

 

 

Ritter Monumental Oversight

 

 

 

 

Gabor Maté


https://twitter.com/i/status/1712402483115614498

 

 

 

 

Baroness

 

 

China UN
https://twitter.com/i/status/1717682784125198354

 

 

Don’t look away

 

 

 

 

“..the genocide of at least a million Palestinians in lives and displacement. The war to do that has now become an international war – and this is a war the US cannot sustain.”

The Gods Are Going Against The Chosen People (Helmer)

The Palestinian strategy against Israel is aimed at destroying Israel’s capacity to survive in its present state in a long war. This means attacking the invincibility of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) and theur so-called Iron Dome defence; this began with the cross-border offensive on October 7, and continues with daily drone and artillery attacks on targets inside Israel, as well as resistance to IDF incursions in Gaza. The plan also means exposing the weakness of the state’s infrastructure and economy; extending the battlefield across all of Israel’s territory – the ports, power plants and electricity grid, communications, and financial markets — making the cost of occupation of the Arab territories unendurable. In a long war, two of Israel’s leading exports earning more than 40% of the state’s trade — diamonds and tourism — face ruin.*

“The Israelis cannot withstand one year of fighting in a war,” Iraq’s President Saddam Hussein told his general staff in 1983 during a discussion of planning for a regional war of the Arabs against Israel.** In the forty years since then, the evolution of military technology and tactics has expanded the power of small national liberation armies like Hamas, Hezbollah, and the Houthis, of proxy principals like Iran, and of the strategic balancing role of Russia and China. Their combination now has shortened the Zionist state’s endurance in a long war, and that of its proxy principal, the US. The Israelis and the Jewish diaspora comprehend this reluctantly. For them, the short war must be correspondingly shorter. This means the genocide of at least a million Palestinians in lives and displacement. The war to do that has now become an international war – and this is a war the US cannot sustain.

As a Pentagon insider said publicly this week, “because there are so many draws on the logistics and support infrastructure of the Pentagon, we’re not prepared to go in in a concerted way. What we are seeing right now is death by a thousand cuts. Our adversaries know we are stretched so they are going to make us stretch even more, so we can respond even less.” The Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman, Maria Zakharova, acknowledged the point in Moscow on Thursday: US naval, air force, and marine reinforcements deployed around Israel and Gaza are “American tactics to strengthen their own security (this is how it should be interpreted) at someone else’s expense.” They are backfiring on Washington’s capacity to defend US forces in the Mediterranean, the Red Sea, the Persian Gulf, and in land bases in Syria, Iraq and Jordan. “On the contrary,” Zakharova added, the US military deployment “will further rock the situation in the Middle East, create additional tension that can spill out beyond the region.”

Zakharova’s warning came in the Moscow afternoon. By then Russian Foreign Ministry officials had held meetings with a Hamas delegation, and officials from Iran, Egypt, and Kuwait. Across the city at the same time, President Vladimir Putin held telephone talks with Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The Kremlin communiqué reported: “Russia and Turkiye have practically overlapping positions.” Israeli and US-led media censorship and propaganda are concealing the breadth of impact of the Palestine warfighting plan, and the deepening military and economic weaknesses of the Israeli state. The longer the war continues, the plainer the evidence is on the battlefield that the single-state scheme of Israel and the US is no longer possible. Whether Israel and the US can be compelled to withdraw to the 1967 borders and a new Palestinian state created with partition, demilitarisation, and international security guarantees – the basis of the Russian position announced again on Thursday in Moscow — remains to be fought over. In this long war, the gods do not favour the Chosen People.

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“The White House fool, his insane neoconservative regime, mindless European puppets and whore Western media have convinced Russia that there is neither intelligence nor reason to be found in the Western World..”

One Mistake Before Armageddon (Paul Craig Roberts)

Each of us faces each day threats to our health, happiness, and life. Overarching it all, we collectively face death from nuclear weapons. The development of nuclear weapons was a human stupidity. They cannot be used, but their existence threatens the life of the planet. So why have them? Accident, emotional response, loss of reason are all human faults that can come into play at any time. During the 20th century Cold War these dangers were underlined by the Cuban Missile Crisis. President Nixon led the way to sanity with arms control agreements with the Soviet Union and his opening to China. Presidents Carter and Reagan kept the momentum going for reduced tensions and peaceful coexistence. The turnaround came with the Soviet collapse.

The neoconservatives took advantage of Russian weakness and prevailed on President Clinton to break the promise given by the George H.W. Bush administration to Gorbachev not to move NATO to Soviet borders if Gorbachev permitted the reunification of Germany. The George W. Bush and Obama administrations continued the hostile policy that Clinton renewed. Today all the arms control agreements that reduced tensions and the danger of nuclear confrontation are erased. The last one–never ratified by the US–was revoked by the upper house of Russia’s parliament last Wednesday. Tass, the Russian news agency, reported that “Achieving the goal of preventing the proliferation of nuclear weapons is not deemed possible in the current international situation, given the destructive position of the United States.”

Also last Wednesday Gilbert Doctorow reported from the Russian media that Russia had just completed a successful test of its land, sea, and air launched nuclear missile triad. “Considering the location of the missile launches and the radius of possible strikes, it does not take much imagination to conclude that the enemy being attacked was the U.S. of A. . . . The capability being tested was for a massive retaliatory strike.” The White House fool, his insane neoconservative regime, mindless European puppets and whore Western media have convinced Russia that there is neither intelligence nor reason to be found in the Western World and Russia has no alternative but to prepare for war.

I have long warned that this was the conclusion toward which our irresponsible leaders were driving the Russians. What this means is that the slightest mistake, the slightest false warning can now ignite nuclear Armageddon. Meanwhile the media focuses on political gossip, Americans scroll their cell phones and complain about inflation, and the threat to the existence of life on earth goes unremarked.

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#StarlinkforPalestine?!

Gaza Suffers Near-Total Information Blackout (RT)

Internet and cell phone services working in the Gaza Strip on Friday night, after Israel “expanded” its military operation against Hamas militants in the Palestinian enclave. The largest telecommunications provider in Gaza, Paltel, has announced “a complete severance of all communications and Internet services” due to intensified Israeli strikes. “The intense bombing in the last hour caused the destruction of all remaining international routes linking Gaza to the outside world,” the company said. Netblocks, a company that tracks internet connectivity globally, confirmed the information blackout, calling it “the largest single disruption to internet connectivity in Gaza since the beginning of the conflict and will be perceived by many as a total or near-total internet blackout.”

Multiple international media, including RT, have partially lost contact with their crews and stringers on the ground. The head of RT Arabic, Maya Manna, said there was no contact with correspondents and photographers operating in the Palestinian enclave as of Friday evening. The sole message came from an RT stringer in the area, describing a “very violent bombing.” “I don’t know what to do with my children and my family. Everyone is afraid, everyone is terrified, and there is screaming everywhere in the Gaza Strip,” Masoud, a local reporter, told RT. According to an NBC News crew member, who was also able to message colleagues, “all internet, electricity and everything” has been cut off. “The situation we’re in is difficult, so difficult and very dangerous. We’re being extensively shelled by artillery and by air,” the unnamed staffer said.

The UN children’s agency also lost contact with their colleagues in Gaza, with UNICEF chief Catherine Russel saying she was “extremely concerned about their safety and another night of unspeakable horror for 1 million children in Gaza.” The international healthcare charity Doctors Without Borders (MSF) said there was no contact with some of their Palestinian colleagues. “We are particularly worried for the patients, medical staff and thousands of families taking shelter at Al Shifa hospital and other health facilities,” MSF said, expressing deep concern over the situation around one Gaza’s biggest medical centers.

Israel previously accused Hamas of turning hospitals into “headquarters for their terror,” referring specifically to Al Shifa, and even published an “illustrative video” which supposedly points out the “different locations in and under the hospital which are being used to plan and implement terrorist activities.” Meanwhile Hamas claimed that by cutting off communications from the Gaza Strip, Israel is attempting to “cover up the crimes of the occupation without any oversight or accountability,” and tries to “create an image of victory,” a senior official, Osama Hamdan, told Al Jazeera.

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“So you have a single weapon, a single carrier, a single ship, which carries on itself almost $20 billion worth of military assets and could be taken out by two or three missiles..”

Biden Inches Towards Military Disaster in Middle East (Sp.)

Tehran has so far moderated its response to US and Israeli actions during the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, ignoring efforts by Tel Aviv to goad the country into a military response by attacking Iranian allies in Syria and Lebanon, and snubbing threats by loudmouth officials and lawmakers to bring the war home to “Iran’s backyard.” Instead, Tehran has joined countries such as Russia, China, Brazil, and Turkiye in calling for an immediate ceasefire. Netanyahu cabinet minister Nir Barakat threatened last week to cut off the Iranian “head of the snake” and launch attacks against the Islamic Republic if Hezbollah tried to open a second front against Israel from the north. Meanwhile, US President Joe Biden on Wednesday said he had issued a “warning” to Iran’s supreme leader that if Iran “continue[s] to move against” American troops in the Middle East, the US “will respond, and he should be prepared.”

But as observers with an understanding of Iran’s military capabilities observe, tackling Iran would be unlike anything either Israel or the US have ever attempted, with the Islamic Republic’s combination of natural defensive geography, powerful indigenous military-industrial complex, advanced missile and drone programs, and readiness to defend its interests even against much more powerful foes making it an extremely difficult target. The centerpiece of the US forces deployed to the Middle East amid the Palestinian-Israeli crisis are the USS Gerald Ford and USS Dwight D. Eisenhower carrier strike groups. Each armada theoretically has enough firepower to level a small country, with each carrier carrying a complement of up to 90 combat aircraft, and the giant warships themselves flanked by between four to six cruise missile-equipped destroyers.

The armadas are certainly no threat to be taken lightly, but do have important weaknesses when stacked up against countries with modern missile capabilities, transforming into “white elephants” from a bygone era, says veteran military analyst and best-selling author Andrey Martyanov. “In terms of their real power projection,” carriers “are big fat sitting targets against modern weaponry such as anti-ship missiles and hypersonic missiles,” Martyanov told Sputnik’s New Rules podcast. “In this respect, they are not a real asset, but rather a liability against any major power such as Russia or China,” the observer explained. “In this particular case, those aircraft carriers and their battle groups, which usually comprise two or three ‘Aegis’-carrying destroyers – they are not really any more a serious military asset except for their ‘fear factor’…They could be sunk or basically disabled, and that’s pretty much it,” he said.

The same can be said even for a mid-tier military power like Iran, given its vast arsenal of thousands of medium and long-range ballistic and cruise missiles, and recent development of a hypersonic missile known as the Fatah. Many of these weapons are theoretically in range of US warships, plus dozens of US bases dotting the Middle East – some of them conveniently just across the Persian Gulf separating Iran from the Arab Gulf oil states. “Iran will be able to deliver both an asymmetric and a very symmetrical” response, Martyanov observed. “Iran has a vast number of highly sophisticated, highly developed ballistic missiles… And they have a vast number of cruise missiles. [The response] can be very symmetrical. And every single air base, military base of the United States will be under attack.”

Combined with carriers’ vulnerabilities is their massive cost, Martyanov said, pointing out that the new Ford-class carrier alone costs some $13 billion, plus $5-6 billion for its complement of aircraft. “So you have a single weapon, a single carrier, a single ship, which carries on itself almost $20 billion worth of military assets and could be taken out by two or three missiles such as Zircon or Kinzhal. Can you imagine the impact, apart from the fact of them having a very serious cultural and mental influence within the United States? The loss of a single ship can escalate… to the nuclear threshold because of the political, emotional, cultural and of course military impact of such a loss. Don’t forget, you also have more than 6,000 people on board this carrier,” the observer stressed.

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“..targeting various civilian infrastructure, including hospitals, schools, UN and Red Crescent facilities, mosques, churches, homes, and even evacuee convoys..”

Israel Bombing ‘Everything But Hamas In Gaza’ – Jackson Hinkle (RT)

Israel’s claims that it is only bombing Gaza to eliminate Hamas are “insane,” political analyst Jackson Hinkle said in an interview with RT on Thursday. He argued that Israeli forces appear to be focusing on targeting the civilian population of Gaza in their ongoing campaign. “They’ve bombed everything but Hamas inside of Gaza,” the host of ‘The Dive with Jackson Hinkle’ said, accusing Israel of targeting various civilian infrastructure, including hospitals, schools, UN and Red Crescent facilities, mosques, churches, homes, and even evacuee convoys. The analyst suggested that this is because Israel does not want a Palestinian state, and that the true purpose of its operation in Gaza is not to defeat Hamas, but rather to force Palestinians out and take over the enclave “once and for all.”

“The reason why they’re doing all of this is that they know they can’t defeat Hamas. That’s why they haven’t gone into Gaza. They know that if they will, they’ll probably have a response from many Arab states, and maybe Iran as well. They know that in a war of that magnitude they wouldn’t win,” Hinkle claimed. He argued that while Israeli authorities have attempted to paint Hamas as being aligned with or comparable to Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS), Israel’s own actions in Gaza seem to closely resemble terrorist tactics. Commenting on Washington’s announcement that it will “stand forever” with Israel and President Joe Biden’s proposal of a $14 billion package of military aid to the Jewish state, Hinkle called to “defund Israel” and “defund Ukraine” as well.

“Why is it that US taxpayer dollars are going to nations like this? Or more importantly, nations that are committing such horrific war crimes on a daily basis,” Hinkle questioned. He stated that the US is currently experiencing a crisis on its own southern border and is dealing with over 500,000 homeless people, 60,000 of which he claimed are veterans. “It makes no sense to me that we’re doing this and Joe Biden just sent about 900 US Marines to Israel,” Hinkle said, adding that he believes “we’re about to see a very big war.” The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) have been relentlessly bombarding Gaza for almost three weeks, following the October 7 surprise attack on Israel by Hamas, which claimed 1,400 lives. The Gaza Health Ministry has since reported that Israeli strikes have killed over 7,000 people. On Friday, the ministry published the names of 6,747 people, including 2,665 children, it claims have been killed by the IDF. It noted that the list is incomplete as many bodies remain unidentified or missing.

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When the Arab world gathers, Erdogan will be there. Turkey has a formidable army.

Erdogan’s Deafening Silence On Palestine (Karan)

At this juncture, Turkiye’s stance on the Palestinian issue lags behind that of many Arab states. Israel, with the backing of the US, is pushing for the “evacuation” of Gaza’s civilian population to facilitate its ground military operation, forcing Egypt and Jordan, key regional players, to reject plans for this forced and seemingly permanent displacement of Palestinians. Jordan’s King Abdullah II and Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi have explicitly rejected this demand, deeming it a red line. Qatar, a financial powerhouse for the Muslim Brotherhood, and Turkiye, once seen as its political representative, now play more static roles in regional affairs. Erdogan’s involvement in Syria, while eroding Turkiye’s historically supportive position for both Fatah and Hamas in the Palestinian struggle, has contributed to a regional realignment in which Iran has grown stronger.

Erdogan, once known for his vocal opposition to Israel, is now positioned as a “peace mediator.” Several geopolitical, political, and economic factors underlie this transformation. The influence of the Muslim Brotherhood has significantly declined after a tragic decade of “Arab Spring-ing,” and Erdogan now needs the support and cooperation of Egypt and the Persian Gulf states, especially Saudi Arabia. He also aims to strike a delicate balance with the US and the EU. His foreign policy motto now revolves around mediation, which has been evident in various conflicts, such as Libya and Ukraine — where Turkiye played a key role in grain distribution. Domestically, Erdogan faces challenges too. Public discontent is growing due to the influx of refugees, as anti-Arab sentiments deepen in Turkish society.

Erdogan’s failed Ottomanist aspirations have given rise to a resurgence of secular Turkish nationalism among the younger generation. The Turkish left, with its history of supporting the Palestinian struggle for a nation-state, protests against religious-based policies, now positioning itself against Islamist perspectives. In these circumstances, Ahmet Davutoglu, the former architect of the disastrous West Asian foreign policy, and now the leader of the opposition Future Party, said the following: “I knew a leader, a leader I was proud to be with, a leader who made my heart flutter when he said ‘One minute’ and when everyone was threatening him, I said ‘Mr. Prime Minister, don’t worry. You made history today. We will do what is necessary’ and I made him apologize to Shimon Peres. Today, my heart cannot accept that that leader has been silent for 10 days. My heart does not accept that he did not come out and shout, ‘O Israel’.”

This reflects the sentiments of many AKP supporters when Davutoglu expressed disappointment in Erdogan’s relatively muted response to the Gaza war. Ironically, the Islamist Turkish president’s policy approach today is more realpolitik than the idealism inspired by the Muslim Brotherhood. While some of his supporters at home and abroad may yearn for the fiery rhetoric of the past, Erdogan’s current approach seems to prioritize stability, economic interests, and a balanced foreign policy over Palestine.

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Who writes these headlines ?

Orban: EU Not Dare to Admit Ukraine Cannot Win on Battlefield (Sp.)

Ukraine will not be able to win on the battlefield, all military experts are already talking about this, but only politicians do not dare to admit it, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban said on Friday. At the beginning of the conflict, the victory for Kiev seemed like a realistic scenario, but now it is absolutely obvious that this will not work out and the Ukrainians will not win at the front, the prime minister said. “This is what all the military experts say and write, but politicians do not dare say that they chose a bad strategy,” Orban told a Hungarian radio broadcaster. Orban further suggested that the current leadership of the European Union should be replaced, as it is not able to cope with crisis situations.

There are now “not good enough leaders” in Brussels who cannot solve the problems that have arisen in connection with the conflict in Ukraine, the leader said. “Maybe in times of peace, when the water is not rough, the wind is not blowing and you can sail on a boat, they are good leaders. But now, during a storm, huge waves, when pirate ships are encountered, we will not be able to prosper with this leadership, that is for sure. Change is needed in Brussels,” Orban said. Ukraine launched its much-touted counteroffensive attempt early in June, and quickly ran up against solid Russian defenses and minefields. According to the latest data, the Kiev regime lost over 90,000 troops.

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“..The easing of live-fire rules was proposed by right-wing National Security Minister Itamar Ben Gvir even before the surprise attack by Hamas on Israel on October 7..”

Israel To Pass Law Allowing State To Kill Its Own Citizens (RT)

The Israeli government is set to allow police to use live fire against protesting Israeli citizens who block roads or entrances to towns during the “multi-front war” being waged by the country, public broadcaster Kan has reported. Under the new rules, the police will only need permission from a senior officer before shooting to kill, the broadcaster said on Thursday. Israeli Attorney General Gali Baharav-Miara has already agreed to fast-track the legislation, which might be introduced as soon as Sunday, it added. The easing of live-fire rules was proposed by right-wing National Security Minister Itamar Ben Gvir even before the surprise attack by Hamas on Israel on October 7, in which 1,400 people were killed by Palestinian militants.

Ben Gvir told Kan in early October that he was “not ashamed to act, to make it so that it will be easier for our police officers to shoot those who threaten them.”According to the minister, changing the rules is “very important” as it would protect officers and allow them to carry out their duties more effectively. Kan had previously reported that the police leadership and National Security Ministry had been concerned that Israeli citizens of Arab origin could block army convoys in case of a military escalation with the Palestinians or with Lebanese armed group Hezbollah. Arabs make up 21% of Israel’s population of 9.8 million, according to government data.

The discussions stemmed from the outbreaks of violence in cities with mixed Arab-Jewish populations in May 2021 during Israel’s 11-day war with Gaza, the report said. Israeli police currently rely on non-lethal means to disperse riots and can only employ live rounds if they feel that their life is in danger. Such rules were introduced after large-scale protests and inter-communal violence in Israel in October 2000, during which 12 Arab Israelis and one Palestinian were killed, and an Israeli Jew lost his life after his car was stoned by Arab rioters. The commission that investigated the police response to the unrest ruled that the use of live fire against the demonstrators had been inappropriate.

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“..the commanders in the field made difficult decisions – including shelling houses on their occupants in order to eliminate the terrorists along with the hostages.”

Israel Military Shelled Israeli Citizens With Tanks, Missiles on Oct. 7 (GZ)

Israel’s military received orders to shell Israeli homes and even their own bases as they were overwhelmed by Hamas militants on October 7. How many Israeli citizens said to have been “burned alive” were actually killed by friendly fire. Several new testimonies by Israeli witnesses to the October 7 Hamas surprise attack on southern Israel adds to growing evidence that the Israeli military killed its own citizens as they fought to neutralize Palestinian gunmen. Tuval Escapa, a member of the security team for Kibbutz Be’eri, set up a hotline to coordinate between kibbutz residents and the Israeli army. He told the Israeli newspaper Haaretz that as desperation began to set in, “the commanders in the field made difficult decisions – including shelling houses on their occupants in order to eliminate the terrorists along with the hostages.”

A separate report published in Haaretz noted that the Israeli military was “compelled to request an aerial strike” against its own facility inside the Erez Crossing to Gaza “in order to repulse the terrorists” who had seized control. That base was filled with Israeli Civil Administration officers and soldiers at the time. These reports indicate that orders came down from the military’s high command to attack homes and and other areas inside Israel, even at the cost of many Israeli lives. An Israeli woman named Yasmin Porat confirmed in an interview with Israel Radio that the military “undoubtedly” killed numerous Israeli noncombatants during gun battles with Hamas militants on October 7. “They eliminated everyone, including the hostages,” she stated, referring to Israeli special forces.

As David Sheen and Ali Abunimah reported in Electronic Intifada, Porat described “very, very heavy crossfire” and Israeli tank shelling, which led to many casualties among Israelis. While being held by the Hamas gunmen, Porat recalled, “They did not abuse us. We were treated very humanely… No one treated us violently.” She added, “The objective was to kidnap us to Gaza, not to murder us.” According to Haaretz, the army was only able to restore control over Be’eri after admittedly “shelling” the homes of Israelis who had been taken captive. “The price was terrible: at least 112 Be’eri residents were killed,” the paper chronicled. “Others were kidnapped. Yesterday, 11 days after the massacre, the bodies of a mother and her son were discovered in one of the destroyed houses. It is believed that more bodies are still lying in the rubble.”

Much of the shelling in Be’eri was carried out by Israeli tank crews. As a reporter for the Israeli Foreign Ministry-sponsored outlet i24 noted during a visit to Be’eri, “small and quaint homes [were] bombarded or destroyed,” and “well-maintained lawns [were] ripped up by the tracks of an armored vehicle, perhaps a tank.” Apache attack helicopters also figured heavily in the Israeli military’s response on October 7. Pilots have told Israeli media they scrambled to the battlefield without any intelligence, unable to differentiate between Hamas fighters and Israeli noncombatants, and yet determined to “empty the belly” of their war machines. “I find myself in a dilemma as to what to shoot at, because there are so many of them,” one Apache pilot commented.

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“..a major international meeting of security officials..”

China To Snub Zelensky’s ‘Peace’ Meeting – Bloomberg (RT)

China is likely to skip a major international meeting of security officials in Malta this week devoted to resolving the Ukraine conflict, Bloomberg reported on Thursday. The gathering, which is expected to be attended by representatives of more than 50 nations, will revolve around the Kiev-backed “peace formula” that is rejected by Moscow. According to people familiar with the matter interviewed by the agency, participants in the summit, which will be held on Saturday and Sunday, will include, among others, members of the G7 Group, Qatar, South Africa, India, and Türkiye, while several other countries, such as Brazil and Chile, are expected to join online. Andrey Yermak, the head of Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky’s office, said on Friday that it would address several points of Kiev’s “peace formula,” including food, energy and nuclear security, humanitarian issues, as well as “the restoration of Ukraine’s territorial integrity.”

The ten-point plan, which was first floated by Zelensky last year, also demands that Russia withdraw its troops from territory that Ukraine claims as its own, and calls for the establishment of a tribunal to prosecute Moscow for alleged war crimes. Russia has repeatedly dismissed the proposal as unacceptable, calling it a sign that Ukraine was not serious about the talks. Bloomberg notes that Beijing’s possible no-show at the meeting would be a “disappointment” for Zelensky, who had hoped to drum up support for his initiative at a summit that is seen as a platform for Ukrainian officials to make a pitch to countries that have remained largely neutral on the conflict.

The Malta summit is set to follow similar gatherings in Denmark in June, and in Saudi Arabia in August. While Russia was not present at either, China attended the latter with Beijing’s Foreign Ministry saying at the time that it helped “to consolidate international consensus.” Moscow has said that it sees no value in Ukraine peace talks that exclude Russia. Commenting specifically on the Malta summit on Thursday, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova called it “pointless and counterproductive,” adding that those who designed the summit’s format rely on “blackmail and threats” to lure in as many neutral countries as possible. Since the onset of the Ukraine conflict, China has refused to join Western sanctions against Moscow, suggesting that the crisis was partly caused by NATO’s expansion after the end of the Cold War.

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“.. the EU’s strategy for Kiev “has failed” because Ukrainians will not win on the front lines and Russian President Vladimir Putin will not go away..”

Hungary, Slovakia Blocked €50 Billion Ukraine Aid – Politico (RT)

The prime ministers of Hungary and Slovakia opposed a €50 billion ($52.8 billion) aid package for Ukraine during the European Union summit on Thursday, Politico reported, citing an unnamed diplomat. Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban reportedly argued that the bloc’s support for Kiev isn’t working, while Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico referred to concerns over corruption in Ukraine. On Friday, Orban told Kossuth Radio that the EU’s strategy for Kiev “has failed” because Ukrainians will not win on the front lines and Russian President Vladimir Putin will not go away. Fico, who on Wednesday became Slovakia’s prime minister for the fourth time, campaigned on a pledge to end military support for Ukraine and criticized sanctions on Russia. Commenting on the EU summit, Fico wrote on Facebook that “Slovakia will have its own opinion in Brussels from today.”

He also noted that he had informed European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen that “the new Slovak government will not support Ukraine militarily,” and will focus only on humanitarian aid. Following Fico’s appointment as prime minister, Orban has gained an apparent ally in his stance against Brussels over the Ukraine conflict. Last week, the Hungarian prime minister met with Russian President Vladimir Putin. The move prompted an “emergency meeting” of NATO envoys in Budapest over “deepening relations” between the EU state and Moscow. Speaking to the press after arriving for a summit of EU leaders in Brussels on Thursday, Orban insisted he was proud to have good relations with Moscow, adding that while most bloc members were pursuing a “war strategy,” Hungary had a “peace strategy.”

Securing Western support has also become more challenging for Kiev, whose counteroffensive is “six to nine months behind schedule,” according to Mikhail Podoliak, a senior adviser to Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky. Since October 7, when the Hamas-Israel conflict escalated violently, Ukraine has faced potential competition for aid and attention from the West. As President Joe Biden’s administration struggles to win approval from US lawmakers for additional military and economic aid to Ukraine, this week a group of Republican senators introduced a bill to split aid to Israel from the money for Kiev. Senator Roger Marshall, who is sponsoring the legislation, argued that help for Israel should not be used as leverage to send tens of billions of dollars to Ukraine.

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Note: it’s the Ukraine aid that is the problem, not the Israel aid. Almost funny. Opinions overtaken by reality.

Speaker Johnson Plans Separate Votes On Ukraine, Israel Aid (ZH)

In what would be a major setback for the War Party’s increasingly desperate effort to perpetuate the proxy war against Russia in Ukraine, new Speaker of the House Mike Johnson says he wants to break up President Biden’s $106 billion funding request that combines controversial Ukraine aid with widely-supported funding for Israel. Johnson told Fox News on Thursday that he’s met with Biden and has informed White House officials that “our consensus among House Republicans is we need to bifurcate those issues.” Reflecting growing Republican legislator skepticism about the Ukraine war — and sagging support among citizens of all political stripes — Johnson said, “We want to know what the object is there, what is the end game in Ukraine. The White House has not provided that.”

Biden’s $106 billion funding request, which packages aid to Ukraine and Israel with other vote-baiting allocations, was preceded by a rare Oval Office address in which Biden made the case for pouring more weapons and money into both countries. In addition to saying the aid was necessary to defend two democracies, Biden added a new spin to his Ukraine war pitch by saying the spending would be a boon to US arms manufacturers. sTacking Israel aid to the Ukraine request is a political play: The great majority of both Republican and Democratic legislators would hate to be on the record as voting against Israel aid. Of the $106 billion, $61.4 billion would go to Ukraine — where President Volodymyr Zelensky’s much-hyped 2023 counteroffensive resulted in a net loss of territory to Russia — and just $14.3 billion would end up Israel.

Biden’s combo package is also in danger in the Senate. On Thursday, a group of GOP senators introduced a stand-alone bill that would only authorize money for Israel, and none for Ukraine. “My colleagues and I firmly believe that any aid to Israel should not be used as leverage to send tens of billions of dollars to Ukraine,” said Kansas Senator Roger Marshall. He sponsored the Israel bill along with Ohio Senator J.D. Vance, Texas’s Ted Cruz and Utah’s Mike Lee. That goes against the wishes of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, who, like Biden, wants to leverage the Israel lobby’s grip on legislators as a means of forcing his colleagues into voting for Ukraine money. The practice of pushing all-in-one mega-bills in front of legislators for a straight up-or-down vote without amendments is one of the grievances that led to the ouster of former speaker Kevin McCarthy. By breaking up Biden’s requests, new Speaker Johnson can also claim that he’s moving the House toward better governance. We’ll see how long that lasts.

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“We are going to follow the truth where it leads, engage in due process… The evidence is coming together.”

Biden Likely Guilty of ‘Impeachable Offenses’ – Speaker (Sp.)

Newly-elected House of Representatives Speaker Mike Johnson weiged in on the ongoing congressional probe into Joe Biden’s alleged influence-peddling abroad, and the GOP efforts to impeach the Democratic POTUS. Evidence may prove that US President Joe Biden committed “impeachable offenses,” the Louisiana Republican who was recently elected House Speaker has stated. “If in fact all the evidence leads to where we believe it will, that’s very likely impeachable offenses, that’s listed as a cause for impeachment in the Constitution… Bribery, and other high crimes and misdemeanors,” Mike Johnson stated in a US media interview. Johnson, who himself sits on the House Judiciary Committee, referenced James Comer (R-Ky.), Chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Accountability, and his investigation, emphasizing that documents and bank records accumulated were the reason why the House shifted into the impeachment inquiry stage on the US President, adding: “We are going to follow the truth where it leads, engage in due process… The evidence is coming together.”

Further along in the interview the host voiced the view, shared by increasingly many House GOP and rank-and-file Americans, as per polls, that 80-year-old President Joe Biden has been struggling cognitively. To this, Mike Johnson agreed, and responded by referring to this as a “concerning reality.” “If you look at a tape of Joe Biden making an argument in the Senate Judiciary Committee a few years ago and you see a speech that he delivers now, there’s a difference. Again, it’s not a personal insult to him. It’s just reality,” stated Johnson. The new gavel-holder in the House also summed up his current vision of the Biden administration as a “failed presidency.” Regarding Johnson’s determination to proceed further with the GOP resolve to impeach Joe Biden, Rep. Andy Ogles of Tennessee told US media that in his opinion the new Speaker “is more than happy to move forward, and will move forward, and the only question is the timeline.” Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene agreed, adding: “I definitely think he’ll be supportive.”

Mike Johnson

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“It is the type of blind purpose that leads — as it did in the McDonnell case — to a unanimous ruling against you on an otherwise divided Supreme Court.“

AG Garland Should Rein in Jack Smith’s War on Free Speech (Turley)

In 2016, the Supreme Court issued a unanimous opinion overturning a conviction that the Department of Justice (DOJ) had seemed willing to secure at whatever cost to the rule of law. The case involved the prosecution of former governor Bob McDonnell (R-Va.), and the lead DOJ prosecutor was now-special counsel Jack Smith. The court dismissed the “tawdry tales” offered by the DOJ and declared that it was far more concerned with the damage that Smith was causing to the legal system with his virtually limitless interpretation of criminality. The rebuke came to mind this week as Smith continued his unrelenting effort to gag former president Donald Trump before the 2024 election. Some of us have previously denounced the gag order issued by U.S. District Judge Tanya S. Chutkan as unconstitutional, but even that order was more limited than what Smith had demanded.

Even the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), a leading critic of Trump, has come out against Smith’s efforts as an attack on the First Amendment. Undeterred, Smith now wants to reinstate and expand the gag on Trump, citing Trump’s comments about his former chief of staff, Mark Meadows, who reportedly has been given an immunity deal by Smith. (Meadows’ lawyer disputes those reports.) Smith wants to bar Trump from criticizing any witnesses as well as the prosecution and the court. That would include criticisms of former Vice President Mike Pence, currently one of his opponents for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination, on his allegations linked to the earlier election. Of course, gagging Trump will not materially affect the jury pool in the case. The Smith prosecutions are one of the biggest issues in this election.

Moreover, it will not protect potential witnesses from withering criticism in the middle of an election that could turn on the public view of these cases. Indeed, Smith has insisted on trying Trump before the election but now also wants to prevent him from speaking fully about the case before the election. Trump alone would be gagged, even as other politicians and pundits debate the merits of the cases and the countervailing allegations of the weaponization of the criminal justice system. The prior order issued by Judge Chutkan is shockingly vague and overbroad. It bars Trump from “targeting” Smith or his staff or potential witnesses or the “substance of their testimony.” It leaves an undefined and uncertain line as Trump campaigns on what he (and millions of citizens) view as the abuse of the criminal justice system to target President Biden’s main political opponent.

Smith would add to the scope and ambiguity of the order in his latest motion. He is arguing that the court should “modify the defendant’s conditions of release … by clarifying that the existing condition barring communication with witnesses about the facts of the case includes indirect messages to witnesses made publicly on social media or in speeches.” Consider that for a moment: Smith would treat comments about witnesses, such as Meadows or Pence, as an effort to communicate with a witness. Thus, Smith continues to litigate with a sense of utter abandon, showing his signature lack of concern for the implications of his legal arguments. It is the type of blind purpose that leads — as it did in the McDonnell case — to a unanimous ruling against you on an otherwise divided Supreme Court.

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Wishful thinking?! The case continues… He’s now called for Ivanka to appear…

President Trump Destroys NYC Judge Engoron After Case Collapses (GP)

President Trump used his Constitutional right to Free Speech on Friday to go off on the crooked Judge Arthur Engoron, New York State Attorney General Letitia James for continuing this lawfare suit against President Trump and his family after the star witness testified this week that there is zero evidence that President Trump misrepresented the value of his assets to gain business loans for his company. There is no victim in this lawsuit. President Trump paid off each loan and the banks admitted they would readily loan him money for future projects. Engoron is the same bizarre and unhinged judge who opened the garbage trial against Donald Trump and his business empire by giggling to the cameras.

The case never should have been filed. This is lawfare at its worst. The prosecution even had the gall to suggest that Mar-a-Lago, one of the most expensive properties in the world, was only worth $18 million. This judge and this lawsuit is a sick joke. It appears the only criminal activity in the case was by Letitia James after she misrepresented the numbers and filed an outrageously dishonest suit against Trump and his business empire with no evidence. Trump went off on Truth Social on Friday, saying the judge “HAS GONE CRAZY IN HIS HATRED OF “TRUMP.”

President Donald Trump: The Attorney General case against me in New York State just lost its STAR witness, SleazeBag former attorney Michael Cohen (he was disbarred for lying, and more!), who admitted to lying in this case and clearly stated that I did nothing wrong. The unhinged Judge, a highly political and fully biased Trump Hater, refused to dismiss this HOAX of a case, and has lost all CREDIBILITY. Likewise, he refuses to accept the decision of the Appeals Court, a first in New York. He should be ashamed of himself for having ruled against me before the trial even started, and for not dismissing this RIGGED WITCH HUNT now that the facts are known and that their star witness has been totally discredited, actually ADMITTING TO LYING. It is a Travesty of Justice for all to see. Businesses are fleeing “the least business friendly State in the Nation!” Racist Attorney General Letitia James should focus on record setting Murder and other Violent Crimes, something she cares, or knows, nothing about!

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Yeadon

 

 

 

 

Shoebill

 

 

Strandbeest Roboticss
https://twitter.com/i/status/1718162059504787517

 

 

Sound waves

 

 

 

 

Support the Automatic Earth in wartime with Paypal, Bitcoin and Patreon.

 

 

 

 

 

Oct 252023
 
 October 25, 2023  Posted by at 8:40 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , ,  47 Responses »


Roy Lichtenstein Woman With Flowered Hat 1963

 

Israel Considers Flooding Hamas Tunnels Before Ground Operation – Hersh (Sp.)
US Opposes Chinese Peace Mission in the Middle East (Tweedie)
Israel Unhappy With Russian Stance On Gaza War (RT)
The Palestinian Tragedy: Cui Bono? (Pepe Escobar)
Israel Failing in Global PR Campaign to Demonize Hamas – Scott Ritter (Sp.)
The Shit Show That Is The Israeli Army (Narwani)
What Biden’s ‘New World Order’ Really Means (RT)
Entire Global Arms Production ‘Not Enough’ For Ukraine – Minister (RT)
Russia’s External Debt-to-GDP Ratio at a Historic Low (Sp.)
OPEC-Russia’s Share in Oil Supply to Exceed 50% by 2050 – IEA (Sp.)
Sidney Powell’s Plea Bargain Sets Up Trump for Conviction (PCR)
Jenna Ellis Admits to Criminal False Statements, Ominous for Trump (Turley)
US Went ‘Overboard’ In Weaponizing Dollar – Musk (RT)

 

 

South Africa’s vaccine purchase agreement with Pfizer.

 

 

Churchill

 

 

 

 

Biden Serbia

 

 

Mike Johnson is the next designee for Speaker of the House

 

 

 

 

The Head of the Snake: Democide – Top Swiss banker Pascal Najadi

 

 

COVID VACCINES DO NOT SAVE LIVES. THEY HAVE CAUSED 17 MILLION DEATHS

 

 

 

 

“..many of whom have had only a few weeks of training in the maneuvers and coordination required for the invasion..”

Israel Considers Flooding Hamas Tunnels Before Ground Operation – Hersh (Sp.)

Israel is looking into flooding Hamas’ tunnel system before starting its ground operation in the Gaza Strip, US investigative journalist Seymour Hersh said, citing sources. “A well-informed American official told me that the Israeli leadership is known to be considering flooding Hamas’s vast tunnel system before sending in its troops, many of whom have had only a few weeks of training in the maneuvers and coordination required for the invasion,” Hersh said in his column published on Substack. Hersh said Israel is in the process of turning Gaza City into rubble, via constant bombing, and is also planning to begin the ground invasion soon. Flooding the tunnels could mean that Israel was ready to “write off the hostages still in jeopardy,” Hersh said.

“Where the estimated 200-plus hostages are is an open question. Israel is only talking about the end of the Hamas regime and Hamas has so far released four hostages,” Hersh said.”The American official told me that the Israel leadership expects more to come soon.” Earlier on Tuesday, Israel’s Deputy Director General for Public Diplomacy Emmanuel Nahshon said that Israel is delaying the start of the ground invasion in Gaza due to possible “deadly traps.” The Israeli military is taking its time as it needs to prepare its soldiers for this unique situation, Nahshon added. Hersh further indicated the al-Aqsa Martyrs brigade joined the Qassam brigades – the military wing of Hamas – in the attack on Israeli kibbutzim and villages on October 7.

On the day of the attack on Israel, the Qassam brigades were not alone and were actually joined by al-Aqsa Martyrs brigades, a coalition of Palestinian armed groups that has been designated as a terrorist organization by the United States, Israel, the European Union and others, the article said on Tuesday, citing a US official. “We know,” Hersch cited the official as saying, “that the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade participated.” The participation of outside groups on Hamas’ side in the attack on Israel was likely one of the reasons why secret talks about a larger release of Israeli hostages were never successful, according to Hersh.

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“The notion that somehow peace is nefarious, that China is being unprincipled in that it’s trying to work for peace..”

US Opposes Chinese Peace Mission in the Middle East (Tweedie)

The US has unmasked its true nature by blocking efforts by China and other nations to bring peace to the Middle East, says a peace activist. Chinese special envoy to the Middle East Zhai Jun said on Monday he had already visited Qatar and Egypt and would now travel to the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and other countries in the region “to further strengthen coordination with relevant parties to promote ceasefire, end violence and mitigate the situation.” More than 5,700 civilians have been killed and some 18,000 injured in the besieged Gaza Strip by Israeli Defence Forces bombing since the armed wing of the Hamas movement launched a surprise attack into southern Israel on October 7. The victims include 2,360 children, almost 1,300 women and 300 elderly people.

Last week the US blocked UN Security Council motions moved by Russia and Brazil calling for an immediate ceasefire between Israel and the Palestinian territories and for civilians to be protected. Washington has also sent two US Navy aircraft carrier strike groups and a seaborne assault flotilla to the region to back up Israel. Peace campaigner KJ Noh told Sputnik that Washington was directly opposed to Beijing’s attempts to broker a peace deal between Israel, Hamas and other states and movements in the region. “China is using its good offices, scrambling to do shuttle diplomacy to try and de-escalate and find a peaceful resolution,” Noh said. “And the United States is saying: ‘Don’t even dare talk about de-escalation. Nobody mention a ceasefire’.”

“It only wants to make sure that whatever Israel does, it does it with a minimum of PR blowback,” he added. “And so it’s trying to mitigate the PR damage rather than prevent the horrific war crimes and atrocities that are sure to happen and that are already happening.” The writer said this was a “mask-off moment” when the West’s true nature was exposed to the nations of the global south. “The US could plausibly mystify many countries by pretending to be something that it was not,” Noh argued. “But when it came out all in favor of Israel’s violence and was ignoring the ground realities as well as international law, then at that point you can’t keep up the pretence any more.”

“Even the quisling leaders of US allies have had to make a conscientious statement because the outrage on the street, the outrage globally is so extraordinary that they cannot but speak up against what the US and Israel are doing,” he stressed. Western media has tried to dismiss China’s peace initiatives as an attempt to position itself as a geopolitical rival to the US — a narrative which Noh called “extraordinary”. “The notion that somehow peace is nefarious, that China is being unprincipled in that it’s trying to work for peace — China is on the side of peace. That much is clear because that it stands to gain from peace,” he said. “Everybody benefits from peace. It just is because China’s model is win-win cooperation,” Noh said. “On the other hand, the empire benefits from war. The US is built on more genocide, primitive accumulation and geopolitical oppression and bullying.”

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Peace is bad.

Israel Unhappy With Russian Stance On Gaza War (RT)

The Israeli Foreign Ministry has conveyed to Russian diplomats their “displeasure” with Moscow’s position on the conflict with Hamas in Gaza, the public broadcaster Kan reported on Tuesday citing anonymous sources. “Russia’s conduct and the remarks against Israel don’t correspond with the severity of the situation Israel is in, which is a state of war,” Israeli diplomats reportedly told their Russian counterparts. West Jerusalem also expressed “displeasure with the role Russia is playing” in the war against Hamas and hope that Moscow will take “more balanced” positions, another ministry official told the Times of Israel newspaper. Moscow’s proposed resolution in the UN Security Council did not include “an explicit condemnation” of Hamas, and did not match President Vladimir Putin’s endorsement of Israel’s right to self-defense, according to the ministry.

Israel was subjected “to an attack that was unprecedented in its brutality, and it certainly has the right for defense, to ensure its peaceful existence,” the Russian leader said on October 13, just days after the Hamas incursion that resulted in more than 1,300 Israeli deaths. However, on the same occasion Putin noted that true peace can only be achieved when the Palestinians have a state of their own. He advised Israel not to react with “brutality,” noting that Gaza was home to around two million civilians, not all of whom supported Hamas, and argued that the proposed “total blockade” of the territory would be just as unacceptable as the siege of his home city during World War II. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has advocated for the immediate stop to the conflict, urging all parties to “respect international humanitarian law, prevent any terrorist actions and indiscriminate use of force.” He also called for the implementation of the UN-endorsed two-state solution to the conflict.

On Tuesday, Israeli diplomats called for the resignation of UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, after he told the Security Council that the Hamas attack “did not happen in a vacuum” and noted that the Palestinians had been “subjected to 56 years of suffocating occupation.” Israel’s ambassador to the UN, Gilad Erdan, accused Guterres of expressing “an understanding for terrorism and murder” and “compassion for the most terrible atrocities committed against the citizens of Israel and the Jewish people.” Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen announced he would boycott meetings with Guterres again, adding that “after October 7th there is no room for a balanced approach. Hamas must be wiped out from the world!”

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“I cannot praise Xi Jinping because it would be as if I’m praising myself & that would be an embarrassing thing to do.”

The Palestinian Tragedy: Cui Bono? (Pepe Escobar)

By now it’s fully established who is profiting from the ghastly Palestine tragedy. As it stands we have 3 wins for the Hegemon and 1 win for its aircraft carrier nation in West Asia. First winner is the War Party Inc., a massive bilateral scam. The White House’s $106 billion supplemental request to Congress for “assistance” especially to Ukraine and Israel is manna from Heaven to the weaponizing tentacles of the MICIMATT (military-industrial-congressional-intelligence-media-academia-think tank complex, in the legendary definition by Ray McGovern). The laundromat will be on a roll, including $61.4 billion for Ukraine (more weapons and replenishing of U.S. stocks) and $14.3 for Israel (mostly air and missile defense “support”).

Second winner is The Democratic Party engineering the unavoidable change of narrative from the spectacularly failing Project Ukraine; yet that will only postpone the upcoming humiliation of NATO in 2024, which will reduce the Afghan humiliation to the status of sandbox child playing. Third winner is setting West Asia on fire: the Straussian neocon psycho “strategy” conceived as a response to the upcoming BRICS 11, and everything in terms of Eurasia integration that was advanced at the Belt and Road Forum in Beijing last week (including nearly $100 billion in new infrastructure/development projects). Then there’s the vertiginous acceleration of the project sponsored by genocidal Zionist maniacs: a Final Solution to the Palestinian question, mixing razing Gaza to the ground; forcing an exodus to Egypt; the West Bank turned into a cage; and, at the most extreme, a “Judaification of Al-Aqsa” , complete with an eschatological destruction of the third holiest place in Islam, to be replaced by rebuilding the Third Jewish Temple.

Everything is of course interlinked. Vast swathes of the U.S. Deep State in tandem with the neocon-run “Biden” combo can ride the new bonanza side by side with the Israeli Deep State – their bubble protected by a massive propaganda barrage demonizing all forms of support for the Palestinian plight. Yet there’s a problem. This “alliance” has just lost – perhaps irretrievably – the overwhelming majority of the Global South/Global Majority, which is viscerally Palestinian. Very well-educated Palestinians living in Gaza and suffering throughout the Unspeakable, fiercely denounce the ambiguous roles of Egypt, Jordan and the UAE while praising Russia, Iran and among Arab nations, Qatar, Algeria and Yemen. All of the above spells out a stark continuity since the end of the USSR. Washington refused to dissolve NATO in 1990 to protect the immense profits of the weaponized tentacles of the MICIMATT.

The logical consequence has been the Hegemon and NATO as a Global Robocop, in tandem, killing at least 4.5 million people in West Asia while displacing over 40 million, then killing, by proxy, at least half a million in Ukraine and displacing over 10 million. And counting. In sharp contrast to the Empire of Chaos, Lies and Plunder, the Global South/Global Majority see the emergence of what a sophisticated Chinese scholar delightfully described as an “aristocratic bromance” at the center of the “present nexus of Universal History”. Exhibit A is provided by Vladimir Putin commenting, “I cannot praise Xi Jinping because it would be as if I’m praising myself & that would be an embarrassing thing to do.”

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“..any judge who heard a corruption case against Ben Netanyahu, who allowed it to go forward would be subjected to impeachment, removal. It makes Benjamin Netanyahu literally above the law.”

Israel Failing in Global PR Campaign to Demonize Hamas – Scott Ritter (Sp.)

The latest claim to emerge about Hamas’ deadly border raid on October 7, which killed more than 1,300 Israeli civilians in several towns near the Gaza Strip, is that the Hamas militants were carrying plans for chemical weapons during the attack. In a broadcast on Sunday, Israeli President Isaac Herzog held up a document he claimed had been found in one of the settlements, across the front of which it says Al-Qaeda in bold white lettering. However, social media users quickly dissected Herzog’s claim, pointing out that the document he is holding is a biography of Ramzi Youssef, an Al-Qaeda member who carried out the 1993 World Trade Center bombing that killed six people, which was published by Al-Qaeda.

A former Al-Qaeda operative who turned coat and became a spy for MI6 told British media that one of the documents Herzog held up was a diagram of a simple bomb that was posted online by Al-Qaeda in 2009 and widely downloaded, but wasn’t instructions on how to make such a weapon. However, the Youssef biography doesn’t contain the image in question. Herzog’s claims follow rhetorical attempts by Israeli officials to link Hamas with terrorist groups like Al-Qaeda* and Daesh**, calling the October 7 attacks “Israel’s 9/11” and saying that if the US was justified in pursuing its War on Terror, then so is Israel justified in launching its all-out war on Gaza, which has killed more than 5,000 Palestinians as of Tuesday.

Former UN weapons inspector and weapons of mass destruction whistleblower Scott Ritter told Radio Sputnik’s The Backstory that in attempting to destroy Hamas, Israel has asked a question it is still unwilling to answer: “what is the ultimate cause of the violence on October 7?” Israel’s trying to undermine any claim to legitimacy that Hamas might have regarding why they carried out these attacks,’ Ritter said. “You know, Israel is not winning the PR campaign globally, primarily because of the heavy-handed manner in which they’ve responded to the attacks. And people, when they dig into the attacks, are trying to make the claim that you can’t cite self-defense when you’re the occupier. The occupier cannot ever claim a right of self-defense from the occupied. And there’s a larger debate going on right now about the history of Gaza, the history of the Israeli occupation, the history of abuse that’s transpired, etc.”

“So what they’re trying to do, the Israelis right now, is create a new aspect to this conversation, which is: Hamas is an extension of Al-Qaeda, because I believe the documents in question were Al-Qaeda documents, they weren’t original Hamas documents, but rather from an Al-Qaeda playbook. And so, again, as has happened before, they’re trying to make a nexus between – the United States did this – where we tried to link Al-Qaeda with [former Iraqi President] Saddam Hussein unsuccessfully because that was a lie. And now we have Israel tried to link Al-Qaeda and ISIS** with Hamas so that it will help, from their perspective, muddy the waters or anybody trying to say that Hamas had a legitimate right to attack Israel on October 7,” he explained. “Then, of course, the chemical weapons, let’s just be straight up on this here: anybody who knows anything about chemical weapons will tell you that somebody carrying a piece of paper from a handbook written by another agency in their pocket does not a chemical weapon make.”

“Remember, Benjamin Netanyahu, the prime minister of Israel, was teetering on the brink of political collapse prior to the Hamas action of October 7,” Ritter recalled. “He is a man who is under the shadow of some very serious corruption charges, charges which, again, you’re innocent until proven guilty in a court of law, but if there was a court of law of relevant jurisdiction who heard the case, he probably be found guilty – and he knows it, which is why he is collaborating with his party in the Knesset, the Israeli parliament, to change the Israeli Basic Law so that there is no longer a separate-but-equal branch of government called the judiciary, but rather a judiciary that is subordinated to the Israeli parliament. And the Israeli parliament can basically veto any judge that they disagree with. They can impeach at will. So any judge who heard a corruption case against Ben Netanyahu, who allowed it to go forward would be subjected to impeachment, removal. It makes Benjamin Netanyahu literally above the law.”

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X thread

The Shit Show That Is The Israeli Army (Narwani)

Meanwhile in Israel, they’re like headless chickens running around. Here is retired General Yitzhak Brick on the shit show that is the Israeli army: “The current situation of the land forces is tragic, they are not ready for war. Emergency supplies are not available, exercises have stopped and the battalions have not trained in years. There is also no weapons training and education, and the army is not capable of carrying out an attack.” “We have lost the ability to field an effective army and have become a one-dimensional aerial power that cannot win a war on its own.”

“I know the army on the ground better than anyone. I have seen soldiers who do not take care of their weapons before leaving the base. No army in the world behaves like this. The soldiers carry their smartphones with them everywhere. Commands are sent via WhatsApp groups. These phones are being tracked by the enemy.” “Our system has lost all control. Have we gone crazy? I cannot sleep at night. Our ground forces and armored corps are not ready for war.”

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Lukewarm air is what it means.

What Biden’s ‘New World Order’ Really Means (RT)

We all have that one friend who can’t stop arranging things – whether it’s matchmaking, dinner parties, or vacation itineraries programmed down to the minute. They just can’t kick back and take things in stride. The world has to revolve around them, on their time and terms. The US has been that guy for the world for the past several decades. Everyone’s tired of it. But now it has a new invitation – to a new world order. “I think we have an opportunity to do things, if we’re bold enough and have enough confidence in ourselves, to unite the world in ways that it never has been,” US President Joe Biden said at a fundraiser this month. Washington’s boldness and confidence has led to unilateral regime-change bombings, the arming of jihadist proxies in Afghanistan against the Soviets and in Syria against President Bashar Assad, and Azov neo-Nazis in Ukraine. None of that has made the world a better place – just more chaotic. It’s not like any of these places end up better off as a result.

“We were in a post-war period for 50 years where it worked out pretty damn well, but that sort of run out of steam. It needs a new world order in a sense,” Biden said. “Worked out pretty damn well” for whom? Surely not for Latin America, subjected to constant intervention by Washington in its own interests. Same with the Middle East for all those decades when it served primarily as America’s gas station. Or even for the European Union, much of which has gone from being a collection of independent-minded allies to mostly a monolithic vassal for US interests at the expense of its own. The same could even be said of my native Canada, whose economic interests were hindered by Biden himself when he unilaterally cancelled a critical $9 billion pipeline project (Keystone XL) upon election. That should have been the very last time that Canada banked its economic interests on American good faith. It won’t be, though.

The EU had its own critical pipeline of Russian gas (Nord Stream) blown up just a few months after Biden said, right in front of German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, that he’d find a way to “end” it if the Ukraine conflict popped off. Then, after Biden’s promises to help his European partners wean themselves off Russian cooperation in exchange for backing Washington’s strategy in Ukraine, reality is setting in for EU leaders that their own blind trust is going to cost them. Not only do they now suffer from an overdependence on American fuel that’s helping to drive inflation, but they’re also stuck with Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act that even further disadvantages European industrial exports, already suffering from high energy costs, to the benefit of US manufacturers. And not even a pleading visit by French President Emmanuel Macron to the White House and Congress has managed to move the dial.

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Then why continue to support them?

Entire Global Arms Production ‘Not Enough’ For Ukraine – Minister (RT)

Western nations must be prepared to support Kiev against Moscow “for decades” and should build up their arms production accordingly, a Ukrainian minister has said, claiming that worldwide industrial capacity at its current levels was not sufficient. “The free world should be producing enough to protect itself,” Strategic Industries Minister Aleksandr Kamyshin told Politico on Monday, ahead of a planned announcement this week of a German-Ukrainian joint arms production deal. “If you get together all the worldwide capacities for weapons production, for ammunition production, that will be not enough for this war,” he added. Kamyshin was appointed to his job in March, as Kiev sought to secure the continued supply of arms and munitions to sustain its war effort.

At the time it was gearing up for a summer counteroffensive, for which the US and its allies provided tanks, armored vehicles and other military hardware. The push against Russian defensive lines has failed to produce any significant territorial gains, an outcome that some media have warned could undermine Kiev’s chances of receiving future assistance. With Israel now embroiled in a war with the Palestinian militant movement Hamas, competition for the dwindling reserves of Western arms has intensified. According to German media, Berlin intends to prioritize supplies to Israel over those meant for Ukraine. “What happens in Israel now shows and proves that the defense industry globally is a destination for investments for decades,” the Ukrainian minister argued. Kiev wants Western defense firms to open production lines on Ukrainian soil to ensure Ukrainian “self-sufficiency,” and has secured pledges from Germany and the UK to do so.

Moscow has warned that foreign-funded weapons factories in Ukraine would be considered legitimate targets for Russian missile strikes. Speaking in an interview in July, Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky claimed that no amount of aid would be “enough” for his nation, “as long as the war continues.” Moscow has described the conflict as a US-led proxy war against Russia, in which Ukrainians are used as “cannon fodder”. Last week, Russian President Vladimir Putin estimated Ukrainian materiel losses since early June as standing at “hundreds of tanks”and “almost 1,500 armored vehicles”. While the US government has pledged to keep arming Kiev, there is growing resistance against the policy in the opposition Republican party. Skeptics have cited the cost of the aid, as well as the lack of proper oversight, despite endemic corruption in Ukraine.

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What a difference.

Russia’s External Debt-to-GDP Ratio at a Historic Low (Sp.)

Recent economic studies have revealed that Russia’s gross public debt to GDP ratio is currently at its lowest level in the nation’s history. According to Sputnik calculations, based on the figures provided by the Central Bank of the Russian Federation (Bank of Russia), the second quarter of 2023 saw Russia’s foreign debt-to-GDP dip below 15%. The indicator has been on a steady decline in recent years. It fell to 31% in 2020, 26.2% at the end of 2021, and just 16.6% last year. The first quarter of 2023 saw a modest decline to 15.45%. “In the second quarter of 2023, debt obligations continued to decline, reaching a total of 14.96%,” the calculations show. At the end of June 2023, gross external financial debt, both government and corporate, was estimated at $343.4 billion. Bank of Russia has also published data on external debt per capita in the second quarter of 2023. According to estimates, the figure decreased by 4% down to $2,300. This is the best indicator since 2006, when it was $2,200.

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Rose colored glasses?

OPEC-Russia’s Share in Oil Supply to Exceed 50% by 2050 – IEA (Sp.)

Russia and OPEC petroleum exporting countries will continue to account for up to 48% of global oil supply until 2030 and exceed 50% by 2050, when Saudi Arabia boosts production, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said on Tuesday. “OPEC and Russia’s combined share of global oil supply remains between 45–48% to 2030 but it rises above 50% by 2050 as Saudi Arabia increases production,” the IEA said in a fresh World Energy Outlook. Total oil production by OPEC members is set to increase by 1 million barrels per day by 2030, given a decrease of about 1.5 million barrels per day by OPEC producers in Africa.

Russia’s output is projected to drop by 3.5 million barrels per day between 2022 and 2050, according to the report. OPEC+, the global alliance of oil producers led by Saudi Arabia and Russia, has been aggressively cutting crude supplies on the global market in recent months, citing uncertainties about demand. The Saudis have pledged to cut 1 million barrels per day until the end of the year, while Russia has said it will reduce daily supply by 300,000 barrels.

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She did go pretty crazy, along with Lin Wood. But is Trump to blame for having bad legal advice?

Sidney Powell’s Plea Bargain Sets Up Trump for Conviction (PCR)

[..] one of President Trump’s attorneys, Sidney Powell, “pleaded guilty to six misdemeanor counts of conspiring to interfere with election duties and accepted a sentence of six years’ probation and a $6,000 fine. She must also write a letter of apology to the state and its residents and testify against her co-defendants, including her former client.” I will explain to you what this means. Sidney Powell found herself at risk at the hands of a black prosecutor and a black jury in Atlanta, Georgia in a jury trial. Powell already knew that the prosecutor was biased against her and reasoned the same from the black jury. Plea bargaining, which is what Sidney Powell has done, arose because prosecutors are more interested in their conviction rate than they are in innocence or guilt, and judges are more interested in clearing their dockets than in trials.

To aid their conviction rate, prosecutors have gained the power to withhold exculpatory evidence from the defendant and to bribe other defendants with reduced sentences or with money to testify falsely against the target defendant. This is what Sidney Powell has done. What this means for Trump is that one of his own attorneys has admitted guilt rather than to undergo the ordeal and risks of trial and has agreed in exchange to testify against Trump. So Trump’s own lawyer provides the black prosecutor and black jury (or white Democrat) with evidence to convict Trump. As I explained in my book, The Tyranny of Good Intentions in 2000, in a plea bargain a fictional crime is created and it serves as a substitute for the alleged crime. The fictional crime is a lessor one compared to the indictment crime.

The defense attorney tells the defendant to accept the plea deal he has negotiated and not risk a jury trial that will annoy both the prosecutor and judge, with a corresponding higher punishment if found guilty. Plea bargaining results in defendants admitting to what did not happen in order to avoid the more severe charges in the indictment, often orchestrated in order to coerce a plea. Cleary, plea bargaining permits prosecutors to build cases on speculation rather than on evidence. As I wrote in 2000: “It is only a short step from creating a fictional crime out of a real one to creating a fictional crime out of thin air. The step isn’t taken all at once. When he option of plea bargaining first surfaces, it is considered by everyone involved as a way of meting out punishment in a timely way. But with the passage of time, several things happen. ”

As Plea Bargaining takes over from jury trials, as it has, the investigative work that is the basis for the indictment is not tested by judge and jury. This permits prosecutors to bring charges for which they have little or no evidence. The public presumes that the prosecutor has a case, and the prosecutor uses the media to create a presumption of guilt. Newspaper and television reports from anonymous leaks from the prosecutor’s office, preceded by the phrase “according to sources familiar with the investigation,” create a presumption of guilt, reducing the defendant’s chance of an objective jury. It would be unusual for a jury to find innocent a person already convicted in the media.

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“It is not clear if she would tie Trump to a conspiracy or racketeering.”

Jenna Ellis Admits to Criminal False Statements, Ominous for Trump (Turley)

The image most of us had of former Trump attorney Jenna Ellis was a remarkably cheerful mugshot after her arrest in the RICO case brought by Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis. Ellis made a very different appearance today in state court as she pleaded guilty to intentionally interfering in the election process in the state of Georgia. While the impact of earlier pleas by figures like Sidney Powell is hard to judge at this stage, this plea has more ominous implications for the former president. Ellis offered a sobbing apology for her role in challenging the 2020 election and stated that

“as an attorney who is also a Christian, I take my responsibilities as a lawyer very seriously and I endeavor to be a person of sound moral and ethical character in all my dealings. … In the wake of the 2020 presidential election, I believed that challenging the results on behalf of President Trump should be pursued in a just and legal way. I endeavored to represent my client to the best of my ability…What I did not do, but I should, was make sure the facts that the other lawyers alleged to be true were in fact true. In the frenetic pace of attempting to raise challenges to the election in several states, including Georgia, I failed to do my due diligence.”

As with the other former Trump counsel, she will not face jail time and was charged with one charge of aiding and abetting false statements in writing. As part of the plea deal, Ellis will have to serve five years probation and pay $5,000 in restitution to the Georgia Secretary of State within 30 days. She will also have to complete 100 hours of community service, write an apology letter to voters in the state of Georgia and testify truthfully in future hearings regarding ongoing cases. Ellis is the type of plea that tends to concentrate the mind. Powell pleaded to relatively minor charges involving unauthorized access to voting machines and areas. Those charges tend to be easy to prove. It is not clear if she would tie Trump to a conspiracy or racketeering.

Ellis pleaded guilty to false statements that could conceivably implicate the President if she claims that he was aware of the falsity and facilitated the crime. Moreover, Ellis recently broke with Trump. She called him a “malignant narcissist” who cannot admit mistakes — and said that she would never vote for him again. The question is now whether Ellis will implicate Trump in this conspiracy. What is clear is that her plea will hold particular interest of Special Counsel Jack Smith in his parallel federal prosecution.

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“Countries like Brazil or India still want to transact with Russia. They can’t do it with dollars, so we’ve forced them to de-dollarize their transactions..”

US Went ‘Overboard’ In Weaponizing Dollar – Musk (RT)

The United States has “overplayed” its hand in “weaponizing” the dollar with sanctions, pushing more countries around the world to slash transactions using the currency, Elon Mask has warned. “You’re now seeing a lot of countries de-dollar their transactions because we’ve forced it. And this goes beyond even Russia, China, and Iran,” the owner of X (formerly Twitter) said during a Twitter Spaces session hosted by American entrepreneur David Sachs on Monday. Musk highlighted a shift to trade in national currencies, especially among the BRICS nations, adding that it was not a choice made by these countries, but rather a necessity forced upon them by Ukraine-related Western sanctions against Moscow.

“Countries like Brazil or India still want to transact with Russia. They can’t do it with dollars, so we’ve forced them to de-dollarize their transactions, thus weakening the strength of the dollar in the world,” he explained. The weaponization of the greenback has pushed many nations to look for alternatives, after sanctions effectively cut Russia off from the Western financial system. A large number of prominent economists have repeatedly warned that the dominance of dollar-based financial institutions and aggressive US economic policy would prompt more nations around the world to abandon dollar transactions and move to local currencies in trade.

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1986

 

 

Eyes of the tiger

 

 

Goat?
https://twitter.com/i/status/1717046487882887349

 

 

Squid

 

 

 

 

Support the Automatic Earth in wartime with Paypal, Bitcoin and Patreon.

 

 

 

 

 

Sep 062023
 
 September 6, 2023  Posted by at 8:55 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , ,  31 Responses »


Claude Monet The Japanese Bridge 7 1924

 

West Is Using Jew To Hide Nazism In Ukraine – Putin (RT)
Putin: Russophobia, Neo-Nazism Become Norm in Ukraine, Baltic States (Sp.)
Ukrainian Spy Participated in US Capitol Breach (Sp.)
Total Defeat Of Genocide-Promoting Kiev Must Be Outcome Of SMO – Medvedev
Ukraine Has ‘Assassination Directorate’ – ex-Security Chief (RT)
EU Plans To Take Advantage Of Xi, Putin Absence At G20 – Bloomberg (RT)
China Plans To Mediate Niger Crisis – Ambassador (RT)
Russian Production Cut Decision Shocks Oil Markets (RT)
‘Wouldn’t Be Total Shock’ If Biden Dropped Out of 2024 Race: Biographer (Sp.)
An Argument for the Relevance of RFK Jr. (Cook)
Turley Sounds Alarm on Attempts to Disqualify Trump (ET)
The Delights of the Pfizer/Moderna Catfight (Malone)
India May Get A New Name (RT)
Musk Threatens To Sue ADL; Blames Activists For Most Of X’s Revenue Loss (ZH)
US Intel & Security Agencies Behind NGO Demands For More Censorship (Public)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fairness RFK

 

 

 

 

Tucker

 

 

 

 

Putin uncut (and angry) :

“When you look at actual archival documents, the blood in your veins simply freezes, it is impossible to look at it without tears..”

West Is Using Jew To Hide Nazism In Ukraine – Putin (RT)

Using Vladimir Zelensky’s Jewish heritage to cover for the culpability of Ukrainian nationalists in the Holocaust during WWII is disgusting, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday, adding that the followers of Stepan Bandera were responsible for the killing of 1.5 million Jews. “I think it’s important to repeat that Western handlers placed at the head of modern Ukraine an ethnic Jew, a man of Jewish background, with Jewish roots – in this way, in my opinion, covering up the anti-human basis of the current Ukrainian state,” Putin told journalist Pavel Zarubin. “That makes the entire situation so highly disgusting, to have an ethnic Jew mask the glorification of Nazism and those who carried out the Holocaust in Ukraine at the time, exterminating 1.5 million people,” the Russian president added.

“Ordinary Israeli citizens have figured this out the best. Just look at what they say online.” Putin had just finished meeting with the ‘Victory’ Committee – an advisory body charged with patriotic education and veterans’ affairs. The Russian president brought up the issue during a conversation with one of the committee members, pointing out that Moscow may not have done enough to present the facts about the atrocities of Nazi collaborators in Ukraine and the Baltic states. “When you look at actual archival documents, the blood in your veins simply freezes, it is impossible to look at it without tears, and this needs to be pulled out and shown. Who are the current authorities glorifying?

“These anti-humans are putting bloody killers on a pedestal, and carry banners with their portraits as they march down the main streets of their cities,”Putin told the committee. The German military and the SS “delegated” the massacres of Jews to local nationalists and anti-Semites, like Stepan Bandera’s OUN and UPA, the Russian president pointed out. “I’m not sure that all the people in Ukraine know about this. So let’s do what we can here to show them, all right?” Putin told the committee. Bandera was declared a war criminal by both the Soviet Union and Poland for his role in the Holocaust and the mass murder of Poles in present-day western Ukraine. The pro-US government in Kiev declared him a national hero in 2010, however, and nationalists have honored him ever since with torchlight processions in major Ukrainian cities to mark his birthday every January 1.

Putin has previously expressed his bafflement that Zelensky would embrace the glorification of Bandera, given his Jewish heritage. Zelensky’s grandfather, Semyon, had also fought in the Second World War, earning two Red Star medals for courage and heroism. The current Ukrainian president was previously an actor and ran for head of state in 2019 on a promise of peace with Russia, only to completely change course and embrace the hardline nationalists within months of taking office.

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“..it was not eliminated: it manifests itself again in the same Russophobia or Antisemitism..”

Putin: Russophobia, Neo-Nazism Become Norm in Ukraine, Baltic States (Sp.)

The Russian leader noted on Tuesday that the country confronts ideological descendants of Nazi criminals in Ukraine, stressing that they are the real enemy of Russia, and not the common people terrorized by the radicals. “New meanings, challenges of the time clearly show that Nazism was defeated in 1945, but, unfortunately, it was not eliminated: it manifests itself again in the same Russophobia or Antisemitism. And the glorification of Nazi criminals, direct propaganda of Nazism in the Baltic states, an just in Ukraine, in general, have become the norm, as if there was no Nuremberg,” Putin said at a meeting of the Russian Victory Organizing Committee.

Putin added that history was started to be used “as a weapon of ideological struggle.” Over the course of the years, the Ukrainian regime declared Nazi collaborators in WWII “heroes of Ukraine”, naming streets after them and opening monuments to the war criminals. At the same time, numerous paramilitary groups supported by Kiev have been openly brandishing neo-Nazi symbols, while Ukrainian politicians voiced their support for the harshest discrimination against everyone who refused to support such policies.

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And now the same nazis show up at the US Capitol?! No way there was just one.

It was full of FBI agents as well as Ukraine spies? The same event that Enrique Tarrio, who wasn’t even there, got 22 years for yesterday?

Ukrainian Spy Participated in US Capitol Breach (Sp.)

US investigative journalist Laura Loomer has exposed an alleged Ukrainian operative who participated in the US Capitol breach of January 6, 2021. She asked whether the US establishment is using foreigners to instigate political conflict inside the US. Famous January Sixer Jacob Chansley, also known as the QAnon Shaman, told American journalist Laura Loomer that a “Ukrainian spy” took part in the storming of the Capitol Hill but somehow was let off the hook by the FBI. Chansley said that the FBI interrogated certain American J6ers over whether they knew a Ukrainian operative named Serhiy Dubynyn (also transliterated as Sergai Dybynyn, or Serhiy Dybynyn).

In one of the photos taken on January 6, 2021, QAnon Shaman is standing near the man later identified as Dubynyn at the front door of the US Capitol. Per Jacob, he didn’t know who the man was: the individual approached him and asked for a photo. [..] In one of the pictures, Dubynyn is wearing red-and-black Ukrainian nationalist attire with a trident stylized as menorah (multibranched candelabra, used in the religious rituals of Judaism). The T-shirt’s slogan reads “zhido-bandera”: the first part of the word is an offensive name for a Jew in Ukrainian; the second part refers to infamous WW2 Ukrainian Nazi collaborator Stepan Bandera.

For her part, Loomer wants answers as to what exactly the alleged Ukrainian spy did on January 6, 2021, at the US Capitol; why he has never been arrested by the FBI (despite his photo with QAnon Shaman immediately going viral); and why the Democrat-dominated House Committee on the January 6 Attack never mentioned Dubynyn. “The United States Capitol was breached by Ukrainian spy Dybynyn and the FBI confirmed it internally, and has kept it secret. I exposed the fact that the FBI knows the Capitol was breached. So why isn’t the media investigating?” asks the investigative journalist on X (formerly known as Twitter).

Previously, US conservative politicians and pundits raised the issue of possible FBI infiltrators and provocateurs in the crowd storming the Capitol on January 6. The US mainstream media later admitted that at least one FBI agent was indeed in the crowd on that day. However, independent journalists believe that there were many more of them, with some suggesting to the idea that the whole havoc was deliberately instigated by the US intelligence community to frame and demonize then-President Donald Trump and his supporters. Newsweek picked up Loomer’s story and reached out to the FBI for comment via an email. However, the bureau’s response, if there were any, is not cited by the media.

Earlier, Loomer tweeted about American neo-Nazi Kent McLellan nicknamed “Boneface” who reportedly traveled to Ukraine as a US mercenary to serve with the Ukrainian Volunteer Corps of the Right Sector* in 2014 and then returned to join the Azov Battalion**, a Ukrainian neo-Nazi military group, in November 2022. McLellan was arrested in Florida by the FBI in 2012 for domestic terrorism. He claims that the CIA sent him to Ukraine to join the Azov Battalion. It appears that the FBI and CIA are playing the neo-Nazi card in their domestic and foreign affairs, using American and foreign operatives to do dirty jobs, the investigative journalist warned.

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“May they be damned regardless of the legal interpretation of their actions. May they burn in hell!”

Total Defeat Of Genocide-Promoting Kiev Must Be Outcome Of SMO – Medvedev

The special military operation (SMO) should continue until its goals have been achieved and those responsible for the eight years of genocide in Donbass have been duly punished, Russian Security Council Deputy Chairman Dmitry Medvedev wrote on his Telegram channel. Medvedev stressed that that those responsible for the murder of civilians in Donbass will be deservedly punished for everything they have done. “That is precisely why the special military operation should go on until the full implementation of its goals. Until the final victory over those who for eight years humiliated and exterminated their own people,” Medvedev wrote. He recounted that the UN Independent International Commission of Inquiry on Ukraine said that it “has not found sufficient evidence that the actions of the Russian military in the country should be qualified as genocide.”

“If the members of this commission really want to find genocide and war crimes in Ukraine, they should stop acting like blind moles and just look in the right direction. In the direction of the criminal regime in Kiev. To objectively assess how mercilessly it kept drowning Donbass in blood for eight years until Russia launched the special military operation,” Medvedev said. He cited the UN Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, which says that, “genocide is defined as acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnic, racial or religious group as such.” “This is exactly what the Kiev regime has been doing since 2014, regardless of the fact that the surnames of those accomplices at the top [encouraging] this crime have changed” since it came to power, Medvedev said.

He also referred to data available from the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, according to which, the years-long armed conflict in Donbass has resulted in the deaths of more than 3,000 civilians. “In 2014 alone in the territories that declared their independence from the criminal regime in Kiev, almost 2,000 people were killed and more than 4,000 civilians wounded. Even in relatively calm periods, dozens were losing their lives. For eight years, the civilian population of Donbass was exposed to massive bombardments, resulting in the deaths of women, children and the elderly,” Medvedev wrote.

“The intent of the scoundrels in Kiev to kill the inhabitants of Donbass and commit war crimes is obvious,” he concluded, wondering “what more evidence these hypocrites from the UN commission need.” “Only one who has lost [his/her] conscience does not to see this and tries to find evidence that genocide is allegedly coming from Russia,” Medvedev stressed. He noted that the aforementioned UN convention also states that persons committing genocide must be punished. “May they be damned regardless of the legal interpretation of their actions. May they burn in hell!” Medvedev concluded emphatically.

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“..Vladimir Zelensky is “understood to authorize the most controversial operations,” while other decisions are often delegated..”

Ukraine Has ‘Assassination Directorate’ – ex-Security Chief (RT)

The Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) has a dedicated assassination program responsible for taking out Russian “collaborators,” the former head of the agency, Valentin Nalivaichenko, has claimed in an interview with The Economist. According to the former official, the special SBU division dates back to at least 2015 and was formed from the elite fifth counterintelligence directorate, after Ukraine’s leaders at the time decided that imprisoning people was not enough. “We reluctantly came to the conclusion that we needed to eliminate people,” Nalivaichenko told the British magazine. The Economist noted that the unit has been linked to the assassinations of Donbass commanders such as Mikhail Tolstykh, aka ‘Givi’, who was killed in a rocket attack in 2017, Arsen Pavlov, aka ‘Motorola’, who was blown up in an elevator in 2016, and Aleksandr Zakharchenko, the first head of the Donetsk People’s Republic, who was killed in a restaurant bombing in 2018.

Ukrainian intelligence insiders also reportedly told the outlet that the SBU’s fifth directorate currently plays a “central role” in operations against Russia, and that it has carried out attacks such as bombing the Crimean Bridge. According to The Economist, Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky is “understood to authorize the most controversial operations,” while other decisions are often delegated. Since the conflict between Russia and Ukraine broke out in February last year, Kiev’s security services are believed to have been responsible for several high-profile killings of Russian journalists and public officials. These include the August 2022 car bomb assassination of Darya Dugina – the daughter of Russian philosopher Aleksandr Dugin – and the killing of military blogger Maxim Fomin (also known as Vladlen Tatarsky) in a bomb attack in St. Petersburg in April of this year.

Several of the Ukrainian insiders interviewed by The Economist admitted that they were disturbed by the targeting of “mid-level” targets. “It makes me uncomfortable,” one former SBU fifth-directorate officer said, claiming that some killings were designed to “impress the president rather than bring victory any closer.” The former spy also admitted concerns that Kiev’s assassination campaign appears to be “driven by impulse rather than logic,” the outlet said. Moscow has repeatedly accused Ukraine of adopting terrorist tactics, and has criticized its Western backers for allegedly turning a blind eye to its activities.

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They think they can get back in favor in Africa.

But the G20 without Putin and Xi does not mean much.

EU Plans To Take Advantage Of Xi, Putin Absence At G20 – Bloomberg (RT)

The EU is going to endorse the African Union’s bid to become a permanent member of the G20 at the group’s upcoming summit in New Delhi, persons familiar with the matter have told Bloomberg. With Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping both announcing that they’re going to skip the event in New Delhi next week, Brussels is looking “to seize the moment… to show that it is serious about redefining its partnership with Africa, despite the troubled legacy of colonialism,” the news outlet claimed in a report on Tuesday. According to the sources, the EU is planning to organize a “mini-summit” with the African Union (AU), which incorporates 55 of the continent’s countries, on the sidelines of the G20 event on September 9, the first day of the two-day gathering.

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, European Council President Charles Michel and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz will be among those representing the EU at the meeting, the sources said. The participants on the African side will reportedly include Cyril Ramaphosa, the President of South Africa, which is the only African nation on the G20, as well as the leaders of Egypt, Nigeria and the Comoros, which is currently chairing the AU. Endorsing the AU’s bid to become a permanent G20 member is seen in Brussels as one of the main goals of the “mini-summit,” the sources said. Permanent membership – instead of its present status as an “invited international organization” – would provide the AU with the same status within the G20 as the EU. The move is aimed at giving Africa “a stronger voice” in decisions by international organizations that affect the continent, Bloomberg wrote.

Russia is also interested in the African Union becoming a member of the G20, with Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov saying in June that its going to happen soon, and “with active backing” from Moscow. Other issues to be discussed during the “mini-summit” in New Delhi include the effect of the Ukrainian conflict on global food security, the reform of the global financial architecture, improving conditions for investments in Africa, and the situation in the Sahel region, according to Bloomberg’s sources. Both Russia and China have been actively boosting diplomatic and economic ties with Africa recently. An announcement was made at the BRICS summit in Johannesburg in July that two African nations – Egypt and Ethiopia – would be among the six new member states to officially join the group from January 2024.

In July, a high-profile Russia-Africa Summit took place in St Petersburg, when host President Putin said that the two had agreed to establish “a permanent mechanism” to cooperate on security issues – including the fight against terrorism and extremism – food security, information technology, and climate change, among other things. Russia and Africa are also going to “combat neo-colonialism, the practice of applying illegitimate sanctions, and attempts to undermine traditional moral values,” the president added.

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…so China imposes itself in Africa.

China Plans To Mediate Niger Crisis – Ambassador (RT)

The Chinese government has announced its intention to facilitate a peaceful resolution to the Niger crisis, following a coup in July that triggered sanctions and left the country facing threats of armed action. “The Chinese government intends to play the role of good offices, a role of mediator, with full respect for the regional countries,” Jiang Feng, Beijing’s ambassador to Niamey, said on Monday during a meeting with military-appointed prime minister Ali Lamine Zeine. Feng stated that while China “stands with Nigeriens” amid the political situation, it remains committed to its principle of non-interference in the internal affairs of other countries. Niger’s military government has faced mounting regional and global pressure since the coup on July 26, which removed President Mohamed Bazoum from power and led to his continued detention.

The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has said that it will pursue all means necessary to restore constitutional order in Niger, including force as a last resort. Last month, the regional bloc said a standby force was ready to be deployed against the coup leaders if ongoing diplomatic efforts proved unsuccessful. Algeria announced a six-month transitional plan to restore constitutional and democratic order in Niger late last month, following the proposal of coup leader General Abdourahmane Tchiani to return the West African country to civilian rule within three years. Algiers has repeatedly opposed a military intervention in Niger, including allegedly refusing a request from France to fly over its airspace for an armed operation in Niamey.

ECOWAS, which has imposed financial and economic sanctions on Niger, has rejected Tchiani’s transition plan, calling the “prolonged” timeline a “provocation.” The United States, France, the Netherlands, and Germany have all halted some foreign assistance projects in Niger following the coup. However, the Chinese envoy indicated on Monday that Beijing would continue all projects that were in the interest of the Nigerien authorities. China continues to be a partner for Niamey in various sectors, including energy, oil, and infrastructure, with both nations collaborating on a significant 2,000-kilometer oil export pipeline project aimed at transporting crude oil from the Agadem fields in southern Niger to the port of Seme in Benin.

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Russia AND Saudi together.

Russian Production Cut Decision Shocks Oil Markets (RT)

Russia will extend its voluntary cut in oil exports by 300,000 barrels per day (bpd) until the end of the year, Deputy Prime Minister Aleksandr Novak announced on Tuesday. “The additional voluntary reduction in oil supplies for export is aimed at strengthening the precautionary measures taken by the OPEC+ countries in order to maintain stability and balance on the oil markets,” the official stated. Russia will review its voluntary cuts monthly, in order “to consider the possibility of deepening the reduction or increasing production, depending on the situation on the world market,” Novak added.

The measure was taken “in addition to the voluntary reduction previously announced by Russia in April 2023, which will last until the end of December 2024,” the deputy prime minister explained. The world’s second largest oil producer has been cutting oil output and exports in lockstep with fellow heavyweight oil nation Saudi Arabia. In a separate statement on Tuesday, Riyadh extended its voluntary production cut of 1 million barrels per day until the end of the year, the SPA news agency said, citing an energy ministry official. The latest round of oil cuts comes on top of voluntary reductions of 1.66 million bpd that some OPEC+ members had first declared in April, and then agreed to extend until the end of 2024.

The reductions are described as voluntary because they are outside the official policy of OPEC+, which obliges every non-exempt member to a share of production quotas. OPEC+, a group comprising the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies including Russia, which pumps around 40% of the world’s oil, has been cutting output since November 2022. Prices of the international benchmark Brent blend jumped above $90 per barrel on the news for the first time since November 2022.

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“..two-thirds of Democrats and 73% of registered voters believe Biden is too old to seek re-election..”

“..Joe Biden is a very religious guy, and fate is a word loaded with religious meaning..”

‘Wouldn’t Be Total Shock’ If Biden Dropped Out of 2024 Race: Biographer (Sp.)

In a surprising revelation, Franklin Foer, a prominent Biden biographer with extraordinary access to the president’s inner circle, suggested that it “wouldn’t be a total shock” if President Joe Biden were to drop out of the 2024 presidential race. “When he talks about his life, he uses this word, fate, constantly. Joe Biden is a very religious guy, and fate is a word loaded with religious meaning. And he always talks about, he can’t say where fate goes. And so I always, when I hear that, to me, it’s the ellipses in the sentence when he’s talking about his own future,” Foer explained during an interview to a US media.

This revelation comes amid growing concerns about President Biden’s age, as he would be 86 years old by the end of a potential second term. Foer’s book also reveals private admissions by the President that he has felt tired during his first two years in office, suggesting physical and mental fatigue. “It doesn’t take [legendary journalist] Bob Woodward to understand that Joe Biden is old”, Foer said. “I’m not a gerontologist, and I can’t predict how the next couple of years will age Joe Biden,” he added. While Biden formally announced his bid for re-election in April, the issue of his age remains a central concern.

A recent poll conducted by a US media found that two-thirds of Democrats and 73% of registered voters believe Biden is too old to seek re-election, with only 36% believing he is mentally fit for office. In response to these concerns, Biden has publicly acknowledged that questions about his age are legitimate. However, behind closed doors, he has expressed frustration at the media’s focus on this topic. The possibility of President Biden withdrawing from the 2024 race, given his unique perspective on fate and mounting concerns about his age, has now become a topic of increased speculation in political circles.

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“..we can make an assessment of a 40-50 percent chance at present of Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., winning the Democratic Party nomination. If he does, I would assess his chances of winning the presidency at 90 percent.”

An Argument for the Relevance of RFK Jr. (Cook)

It is hard to believe that Donald Trump can win an election from prison, seeing that there is no legal mechanism to free him at present from his legal calamities, deserved or not. The Democrats appear to be moving California Governor Gavin Newsom to the starting line. A recent poll by Rasmussen Reports says that 36 percent of Democratic Party voters favor Newsom. But Newsom has no electoral history at the national level, is identified with California’s multiple crises of homelessness and crime, and would be viewed as a “consolation prize” for erstwhile Biden backers. I would assess his chances as not much more than the Rasmussen figure.

The most credible candidate remaining on either side may be Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., whose standing is rising daily. Even though only about 20 percent of Democratic voters favor him over Biden, his numbers will rise dramatically as Biden fades into oblivion. Kennedy’s hopes are similar to his father’s in 1968, starting with no perceived chance against Lyndon Johnson or Hubert Humphrey but close to becoming the front-runner when he was assassinated. The Biden administration is courting such an eventuality by denying Kennedy Secret Service protection, but I assess they’ll fail at this particular dirty trick.

While until now the mainstream media have dumped on RFK, Jr. big-time, that may be changing. He just got his first indication of mainstream support in a recent Forbes article on his economic program. He is reaching large audiences with his Joe Rogan and Tucker Carlson interviews. He is showing himself a serious candidate with his measured stance on stopping the Ukraine war and skepticism about COVID-related policy. His vow to rebuild the American middle class is a meaningful, realistic goal that has the potential for traction. His stance on the issues is showing appeal to Republican voters looking for an alternative to Trump. Meanwhile, Cornel West’s third-party candidacy threatens to do to a Democrat what Ralph Nader did to Al Gore in 2000 and Jill Stein to Hillary Clinton in 2016. But Kennedy, with his bipartisan appeal, would likely be immune to losing votes to West.

Further, if the Democratic establishment decided to go for Newsom or for any 2020 retreads like Elizabeth Warren, Amy Klobuchar, or Pete Buttigieg, it would be difficult to deny the candidates a debate forum or meaningful primaries. I believe that Kennedy would clean Newsom’s clock if and when that happens. I believe we can make an assessment of a 40-50 percent chance at present of Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., winning the Democratic Party nomination. If he does, I would assess his chances of winning the presidency at 90 percent. As a newly-elected president and head of what would have to be a national unity government, Kennedy could then take the high road by negotiating pardons for both Biden and Trump, similar to the way President Jimmy Carter made his first official action in 1977 an executive order pardoning all Vietnam era draft dodgers.

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“The amendment was written to deal with those who engage in an actual rebellion causing hundreds of thousands of deaths..”

Turley Sounds Alarm on Attempts to Disqualify Trump (ET)

An attempt to disqualify former President Donald Trump from appearing on 2024 presidential ballots based on a theory derived from the Constitution’s 14th Amendment was dismissed by a prominent law professor on Tuesday. A theory that has recently been floated in the media claims that the former president could be blocked from ballots under Section 3 of the 14th Amendment via the Disqualifications Clause, which states that individuals who “have engaged in insurrection or rebellion” cannot hold office. Proponents of the claim say that President Trump engaged in “insurrection” during the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol breach. But George Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley stated that the new theory is “not simply dubious but dangerous.”

“The amendment was written to deal with those who engage in an actual rebellion causing hundreds of thousands of deaths,” Mr. Turley told Fox News. “Advocates would extend the reference to ‘insurrection or rebellion’ to include unsupported claims and challenges involving election fraud.” The professor, who had served as an expert impeachment witness in favor of Republicans defending President Trump, said he didn’t favor the former president’s speech on Jan. 6. However, he said that the Jan. 6 incident was merely “a protest that became a riot” and not an insurrection against the United States. “According to these advocates, Trump can be barred from the ballot without any charge, let alone a conviction, of insurrection or rebellion,” Mr. Turley said.

Mr. Turley added that he views that some people who proposed the theory also “argue that there is no action needed from Congress” and that “state and federal judges could just bar those who are deemed as supporting rebellion through their election challenges and claims.” Over the weekend, Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.), a former Democratic vice presidential candidate, stated that there was a “powerful argument” for barring President Trump under the 14th Amendment.

“The language (of the amendment) is specific: If you give aid and comfort to those who engage in an insurrection against the Constitution of the United States—it doesn’t say against the United States, it says against the Constitution. In my view, the attack on the Capitol that day was designed for a particular purpose … and that was to disrupt the peaceful transfer of power as is laid out in the Constitution,” he told ABC News. The former president has long denied Democrat allegations that he initiated a riot or insurrection at the Capitol. He has often pointed to a portion of his speech on Jan. 6 where he called on rally attendees to “peacefully and patriotically” protest.

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Haven’t seen or heard much from Malone lately, and when I do, it’s him complaining about recognition. “The lady doth protest too much, methinks”

The Delights of the Pfizer/Moderna Catfight (Malone)

Moderna and Pfizer were awarded “vaccine” contracts from governments across the world, and consequently reported record profits. Their market capitalization went through the roof. Moderna leadership (including Robert Langer) began “divesting” of Moderna stock. And then the patent fights began. The latest version of the various companies spun out of the University of British Columbia research group which had developed the updated version of the cationic lipid formulations which I had worked with filed patent infringement lawsuits against Moderna. And Moderna filed lawsuits against BioNTech and their Pfizer partner/licensee claiming infringement on issued Moderna patents which, despite the eight previously issued (and expired) Vical patents which cover mRNA and DNA vaccines, claim inventorship of the idea and reduction to practice of mRNA vaccines.

At which point I decided to dig into the actual Kariko, Weissman and Moderna patents to see what are the actual issued claims. Please understand, at this point in time, the Vical patents have expired. I have no (financial) dog in this fight. Only a bystander’s perverse interest and a lingering desire to not be written out of history. And as discussed in a prior August 26, 2022 substack titled “Moderna sues BioNTech/Pfizer?” what I find when I actually do the research (in contrast to the corporate media “reporters”) is that – somehow – consistent with Dr. Robert Langer claiming no knowledge of my role in discovery and development of these ideas as a young graduate student, Moderna and its intellectual property team has completely failed to cite my prior work and the issued patents.

Which brings me to the present. Pfizer is now claiming that the Moderna patents, which Moderna sought to weaponize against Pfizer/BioNTech, are invalid because the technology and invention of using mRNA for vaccination purposes was first disclosed and reduced to practice in 1990. In other words, Pfizer/BioNTech are now citing my work (and that of my close colleagues) to dispute the Moderna patent infringement claims – precisely as I had recommended in my August 2022 essay. Please keep in mind that Thompson/Reuters has close ties (at the board of directors level) with Pfizer, my initial reporting on which conflict of interest was one of the key reasons I was deplatformed by Linked-In (the first time).

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“The word ‘India’ is an abuse given to us by the British whereas the word ‘Bharat’ is a symbol of our culture..”

India May Get A New Name (RT)

A formal G20 dinner invitation issued by President Droupadi Murmu that refers to her as the “President of Bharat” rather than India has increased speculation on Tuesday that the Asian country could begin the process of changing its name as early as this month, local media has reported. The invite, which has been widely cicrulated on social media along with the hashtag #PresidentOfBharat, has been issued to various world leaders to compel them to attend a dinner on Saturday at Bharat Mandapam convention center in New Delhi, the venue for the G20 summit on September 9 and 10. “The word ‘India’ is an abuse given to us by the British whereas the word ‘Bharat’ is a symbol of our culture,” Harnath Singh Yadav of the Bharatiya Janata Party told the ANI news agency.

The speculation comes as India Today reported on Tuesday that a resolution to officially rename India as Bharat could be tabled by the government at a special parliamentary session scheduled for later this month. However, the agenda for the upcoming session has not yet been made public so it remains unclear if the proposal will be formally introduced. The current language in its constitution refers to the country as “India, that is Bharat, shall be a union of states…” Some political figures have endorsed switching names, including Mohan Bhagwat of the right-wing nationalist Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) political party, who has called on citizens to use the updated term. The name Bharat is derived from Bharata; the name for India in several of the country’s languages, which itself comes from Hindu literature. Initially,

Bharata referred to only a western region of the Gangetic Valley before it was more broadly used to describe the Indian subcontinent and the region of Greater India. The term Bharata was generally used interchangeably with ‘India.’ India is also sometimes known by a third name: Hindustan. Other advocates for the switch have argued that the rumored constitutional change to a widely adopted, single indigenous name for the Asian country would bolster national pride, reinforce its heritage and distance itself from its history of colonial rule by Great Britain. Critics, though, such as the Congress party leader Jairam Ramesh, have pushed back against the proposal, the saying that the move would in effect place India’s constitution “under assault.”

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“.. In our case, they would potentially be on the hook for destroying half the value of the company, so roughly $22 billion.”

Musk Threatens To Sue ADL; Blames Activists For Most Of X’s Revenue Loss (ZH)

Elon Musk, owner of the platform X, formerly known as Twitter, has threatened to ban the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) from his platform, adding that he had “no choice” but to file a defamation lawsuit against the advocacy group, which previously called for a pause on ad spending on the social network. The group alleges Mr Musk has failed to clamp down on hate speech on the social media platform since his takeover last year, allowing disinformation to proliferate – something Mr Musk strongly denies. Further, it was revealed that the ADL has put pressure on X to deplatform popular anti-woke account Libs of TikTok, which is run by a conservative Jewish woman, Chaya Raichik. A #BanTheADL began circulating on the social media platform after a meeting last Thursday between ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt and X’s new CEO Linda Yaccarino.

“I had a very frank + productive conversation with @LindayaX yesterday about @X, what works and what doesn’t, and where it needs to go to address hate effectively on the platform. I appreciated her reaching out and I’m hopeful the service will improve. @ADL will be vigilant,” Greenblatt posted after the meeting. The hashtag was condemned by Israel’s foreign ministry. Additionally, as MEE reports, while this recent campaign has been amplified by so-called ‘far-right’ social media accounts (translation: non-mainstream-narrative-spewers), progressive organizations and Palestinian activists have for years raised concerns about the ADL and its efforts to undermine social justice movements in the US. News of the potential lawsuit comes after news broke that X is still down around 60% in US ad revenue as the ADL continues to put pressure on its advertisers to avoid the social media platform.

“I don’t see any scenario where they’re responsible for less than 10pc of the value destruction, so [around] $4bn.” In November, the pressure group Stop Hate for Profit, which includes the ADL, called on advertisers “to pause their spending globally” and claimed “hate speech and disinformation have proliferated” on the app since Mr Musk’s takeover. It wouldn’t be the first time the ADL was sued for defamation… “Interesting. In our case, they would potentially be on the hook for destroying half the value of the company, so roughly $22 billion.”— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) September 4, 2023. [..] Musk also suggested that X will expose – Twitter-Files-esque – the ADL’s requests to ban and censor X accounts it deems anti-Semitic next week, prompting a hashtag for #TheADLFiles… “A giant data dump would clear the air.”

Tucker ADL

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Alex Gutentag and Michael Shellenberger via Public Substack.

Looks like we can’t afford to lose this.

US Intel & Security Agencies Behind NGO Demands For More Censorship (Public)

ADL is waging a very similar campaign against X/Twitter that it successfully waged against Facebook in 2020. In just three days, 800 companies, including $129 billion consumer products giant Unilever, withdrew tens of millions of dollars in ad revenue from Facebook until it agreed to ADL’s censorship demands. “The Facebook caved to far-left pressure groups and now allows them to silently dictate policy in exchange for ad money,” said Musk yesterday. “That is the relationship they’ve had with X/Twitter for many years. Presumably, they have that with all Western search or social media orgs.”

It’s possible that there has been an increase in hate on X since Elon Musk bought the company. With greater free speech policies comes the possibility of more offensive speech, including racist or antisemitic speech. Bigotry does exist, and it should be challenged. But there is no good evidence of that. Public has debunked claims by ISD and CCDH of an increase. And researchers have repeatedly debunked ADL’s claims of rising antisemitism for years. In 2009, an Israeli filmmaker found that ADL could not support its claims of an antisemitism crisis. Wrote NPR in a review of the film, “When he presses ADL staffers for evidence to back up their claims of a sharp spike in North American anti-Semitism in 2007, they can offer only wan transgressions…”

Eleven years later, Liel Leibovitz noted in Tablet that ADL had, for a report, “counted hundreds of threatening calls to Jewish community centers made by a mentally troubled Israeli teenager. You had to read the report’s fine print to learn that the number of violent attacks against Jews that year had actually decreased by 47%.” ADL, ISD, and CCDH have not presented any good evidence that offensive speech online directly causes “hate-motivated violence,” nor that censorship prevents it. Moreover, last week Public reviewed evidence suggesting that the best way to combat hate speech is through open and public debate, which allows people to change their minds, not censorship.

ADL’s main goal is supposed to be stopping “the defamation of the Jewish people,” but the organization is using the legacy of antisemitism and the Holocaust to justify unrelated censorial advocacy work. This is exploitative, and it is defamatory to say that Jews, in general, need and favor censorship. Many Jews on both the left and the right have argued that ADL does not represent their interests. By claiming to speak for all Jewish people while demanding highly unpopular policies, the ADL may be inadvertently driving antisemitism. As troubling as these highly partisan ideological biases are, what’s most dangerous are the past and present ties between ADL, ISD, CCDH, and governments, particularly security and intelligence organizations [..]

Although ADL is currently focused on demonizing Trump supporters as “domestic terrorists,” it has a history of partnering with the state and law enforcement to target the Left….Today, ADL’s ties to intelligence and security organizations are closer than ever. It works with the FBI by holding a training session with agents and hosting FBI Director Christopher Wray as a featured speaker. According to Greenblatt, the FBI works directly with ADL “every day.” … We do not have firm proof that there is a conspiracy by the intelligence and security agencies of the United States and Britain to control the content on social media platforms like X and Facebook through their control over CCDH, ISD, and ADL. Perhaps ideological, cultural, and political alignment alone explain the remarkable coordination we have documented. Perhaps the US and UK government funding for CCDH and ISD is insignificant compared to their nongovernmental funders.

But there is enough evidence of conspiracy for members of Congress and Parliament to investigate CCDH, ADL, ISD, and other so-called “nongovernmental” organizations for the advocacy of censorship. Who is funding them? What are their relationships with government officials? What is their role in intelligence and security organizations? What’s clear is that we also need to change our view of ADL, CCDH, and ISD. They cannot be considered “nongovernmental organizations.” Their ties to the government, particularly the national security state, are too strong.

Shellenberger

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Pit viper

 

 

 

 

Tarpon

 

 

 

 

Tiger swim

 

 

Speed

 

 

 

 

Support the Automatic Earth in wartime with Paypal, Bitcoin and Patreon.

 

 

 

 

 

Aug 042023
 
 August 4, 2023  Posted by at 9:30 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , ,  28 Responses »


Pieter Brueghel the Younger Construction of the Tower of Babel 1595

 

Is Biden Preparing to Dump Ukraine For Taiwan? (Sp.)
Response To Niger Coup May Escalate Into ‘World African War’ (RT)
American Democracy Will Pay A Huge Price For Jack Smith’s Insouciance (Stockman)
It’s For The Headline, Not For The Win (ET)
Two Sets of Laws for Two Americas (Hanson)
My Public Advice To President Trump’s Legal Team … (Mark Levin)
Chinese Wanted Biden Family Name To Help Acquire US Energy Assets (JTN)
Zakharova Slams Borrell’s Remarks On Russia Creating ‘New Dependencies’ (TASS)
Kremlin Pours Cold Water On BRICS Currency Speculation (RT)

 

 

 

 

Trump straws
https://twitter.com/i/status/1687151866956693514

 

 

Pence gold

 

 

 

 

Tucker Tulsi
https://twitter.com/i/status/1687123434067673088

 

 

Rogan goof

 

 

 

 

Just a matter of book-keeping then.

Is Biden Preparing to Dump Ukraine For Taiwan? (Sp.)

US President Joe Biden is reportedly seeking congressional approval for financing military aid for Taiwan as part of the supplemental budget for Ukraine. What’s behind the move? The White House is going to ask the US Congress to fund the arming of the island of Taiwan via the Ukraine budget in order to speed up weapons transfers to Taipei, as per Western media. The request followed the Biden administration’s announcement that the US would deliver $345 million worth of weapons to the island through a mechanism known as the “presidential drawdown authority.” The mechanism has long been used by the US to send arms to Ukraine. Taiwan, an island located at the junction of the East and South China Seas in the northwestern Pacific Ocean, is regarded by Beijing as an inalienable part of the People’s Republic of China.

“Well, what it shows is that the Biden administration has no regard or concern for angering China,” Larry Johnson, a veteran of the CIA and the State Department’s Office of Counterterrorism, told Sputnik. “China has made it very clear that it views any effort by the United States to provide weapons or military training to Taiwan as a direct threat to China. And for some reason, the Biden administration refuses to accept or acknowledge the position of the Chinese. In submitting this aid package, I don’t think the Biden administration will have any problem getting it passed. We’ve still not reached a point in the United States where there is opposition to funding the war in Ukraine, or the potential for war in China. So, I think it’s likely to go through, which means it’s going to make relations between China and the United States worse, not better.”

At the same time, the CIA veteran does not consider the development as lessening support for Ukraine. It’s likely that the Biden administration has come under pressure to show support for Taiwan, per Johnson. The expert sees the funding maneuver “as a convenient legislative vehicle to get approval for the funding in a way that expedites it, doesn’t delay it.” “I’m still not clear that it represents a cut in funds for Ukraine and a shifting of those funds to Taiwan. I think it’s more a function of the US legislative process, that Congress must appropriate money before the administration, in theory, can spend it. Because this legislation had already been presented, they were able, I think, decided to carve out some of the funds in that for Taiwan, because they had made prior commitments to Taiwan to provide some kind of support,” Johnson explained.

China has repeatedly urged the US to stop escalating tensions in the Taiwan Strait. Nonetheless, US government officials and congressional leaders continue to send mixed signals to the island and meet with Taiwan’s leadership. Furthermore, the US is encouraging its allies to beef up their military presence in the Asia Pacific, citing the “China threat” to the island. To cap it off, President Joe Biden has repeatedly pledged to protect Taiwan “militarily,” with the White House then downplaying his vows as gaffes. Why is Washington continuing to develop the conflict around Taiwan?

“Well, because, number one, the United States continues to believe that it is the most powerful country in the world and can dictate to other countries reality. It’s a consequence of arrogance and hubris. The United States refuses to accept the fact that China and Russia have an equal say in matters. And I think, unfortunately, the United States, if it persists in taking actions like this, will provoke a conflict that will be very damaging to the United States and will weaken it, not make it stronger. The United States can’t even fund the one proxy war in Ukraine right now. It’s been losing. It can’t provide sufficient artillery shells, for example. The United States fails to recognize that it’s reached the limits of its power,” Johnson concluded.

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Waking up.

Response To Niger Coup May Escalate Into ‘World African War’ (RT)

A Western-driven campaign to force Niger’s acting government to restore former President Mohamed Bazoum to power following last week’s military coup could bubble up into a wider conflict pitting NATO powers against Russia and China, an activist has told RT. “We are now at the door of a world African war,” African Freedom Institute President Franklin Nyamsi said on Thursday in an RT interview. He added that should the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) take military action, as threatened, to remove Niger’s new government, such allies as Burkina Faso and Mali will likely come to the country’s defense. ECOWAS and the West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU) imposed sanctions on the new Nigerien government last week, suspending all financial transactions and freezing the country’s assets in ECOWAS-member states.

Regional development banks cut off all assistance, as did the EU and France. The US and the African Union also threatened to follow suit. ECOWAS demanded that the junta restore Bazoum, who has been under house arrest since the coup, by August 6 or face military action by the regional bloc. Nyamsi argued that ECOWAS was acting on behalf of US and NATO interests, as did Bazoum, and had no authority in its charter to attack one of its members. The ECOWAS heads of state who back the bloc’s response to the Niger coup are dictators who have been responsible for government overthrows in their own countries, Nyamsi claimed. “They’re working for foreign interests, imperialist neocolonialist interests,” he said. “And the organization is permanently following the decisions of French political powers, of European political powers, of American political powers.”

A military intervention by ECOWAS would be a “declaration of war” not only against Niger, but also against dissenting members, including Burkina Faso, Mali and possibly Guinea, he added. “Those countries have clearly stated that they are against the repetition of what happened against Libya in 2011,” when NATO overthrew the government, killed President Muammar Gaddafi and armed Islamic terrorists, Nyamsi said. The result was greater destabilization of the Sahel region, which continues to this day, the activist claimed. “It is unbelievable that ECOWAS involves itself in a new attack on NATO’s inspiration against African interests and just because capitalistic oligarchy at the head of NATO has a lot of intention of keeping its hand on the wonderful natural resources of Africa,” he said.

The two ECOWAS factions – pro-NATO vs. pan-African – might not only fight each other, but also seek assistance from their powerful allies, Nyamsi said. Niger’s backers would likely call on Russia, China and Iran for help. “Possibly they want to export a world war in Africa between, finally, the two main blocs of the old Cold War,” he warned. “We don’t need that in Africa.” Making the situation even more volatile is the fact that many of the Western weapons sent to Ukraine to use against Russian forces have wound up in West Africa, Nyamsi said. “We are in a dangerous situation for all the planet. If we don’t use negotiation, if we don’t seek consensus, if we don’t respect international law for the powerful countries and the less powerful countries, we are going to collapse for all of humanity.” Nyamsi argued that Western military involvement in Africa, including the US counterterrorism bases in Niger, has further destabilized the continent. “There is no confidence that those who destroyed Libya, who killed Gaddafi in the NATO coalition, are seriously fighting against terrorism,” he said.

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For Jack Smith?

American Democracy Will Pay A Huge Price For Jack Smith’s Insouciance (Stockman)

For crying out loud. The criminal prosecution of an ex-president and current election front-runner entails a super-duper heavy burden of proof, not just enough plausibility to get a Mafia don into court. To the contrary, it needs be predicated upon a damn serious “high crime” and provable criminal actions by the target that actively threatened America’s national security or core democratic processes.] By contrast, Jack Smith’s latest indictment is the very opposite. It’s self-evidently another exercise in prosecutorial “I gotcha”, and is even more tortured than the classified documents case. For instance, Trump retweeted a post labeling the Republican leaders of the Pennsylvania legislature as “cowards” on December 4, 2020. By the lights of Jack Smith that exercise in social media dissing was evidence of Trump’s complicity in a felonious conspiracy.

The same thing happened when several weeks later VP Pence called Trump to wish him Merry Christmas and Trump turned the conversation to the vice president’s role in the upcoming electoral vote count. So by merely raising the topic about an event to occur two weeks later, and a potential action by Pence that was still legally in play at least in the minds of a minority of Trump’s advisors, the sitting president of the United States thereby participated in said felonious conspiracy! The indictment is packed with pages on end of such legal humbug. But before you get lost in the utter trivia, it needs be remembered that we are actually in the midst of a fraught exercise in democracy, not a law school Moot Court proceeding on the proposition, taken in splendid abstraction, that no one is above the law.

The plain fact is that Smith’s 45 pages of purported nefarious doings do not embody a criminal conspiracy at all. What the indictment actually describes is TrumpWorld at work in all of its pandemonium, bickering, incompetence and shoot-from-the hip recklessness. The self-evident reason that Trump pursued the election fraud canard right up until the wee hours of January 7th, when the electors finally certified Biden’s victory, is that the man is a megalomaniacal brute who just won’t take “no” for an answer.

After all, by then nearly everyone who knew anything had told him that the election was over, that he had lost and that while the election reeked from the odor of an unprecedented 60 million mail-in votes and massive but dubious Democrat “ballot harvesting”, the level of provable fraud did not rise to anything remotely determinative of a different outcome. In fact, his Attorney General, Bill Barr, had bailed weeks earlier, the White House counsels office had given up the ghost and three days earlier Trump himself had chickened out of the required Saturday Night Massacre redux.

Trump Subpoena
https://twitter.com/i/status/1687290102907555840

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“..You now open the door to us being able to ask you questions about the legitimacy of the 2020 election..”

It’s For The Headline, Not For The Win (ET)

The third indictment of former President Donald Trump could produce unintended consequences for the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), one of his lawyers says. Legal experts disagree about the strength of the Aug. 1 indictment itself. But in interviews with The Epoch Times, they concurred with Mr. Trump’s legal spokeswoman, New Jersey attorney Alina Habba, on one point: DOJ prosecutors may have difficulty proving their case. Mr. Trump is scheduled to appear in a Washington federal court today, Aug. 3, on a four-count indictment. It alleges that the former president willfully made untrue claims that the 2020 election of Democrat President Joe Biden was fraudulent.

The election dispute culminated in a protest in Washington; a number of agitators breached the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, against Mr. Trump’s expressed wishes as Congress was preparing to certify Mr. Biden’s victory. More than 1,000 people, including some who committed no violence, were charged. The DOJ is alleging that Mr. Trump orchestrated a conspiracy against the U.S. government during the two months leading to Jan. 6, 2021, the indictment says. Under presidential immunity and free speech rights, Mr. Trump is allowed to dispute the election, Ms. Habba said. She also questions how the government can show that Mr. Trump knew he was making false assertions. “The thing that makes this case the most weak is: How are you going to prove what he actually believed?” Ms. Habba said in an interview with The Epoch Times on Aug. 2, a day after the new indictment was filed.

Mr. Trump has never conceded defeat and has continued to assert that the election was “rigged” or “stolen” ever since Mr. Biden was inaugurated as the 46th president in January 2021. Ms. Habba and many other lawyers are denouncing the latest indictment of Mr. Trump as an attempt to criminalize political disagreements. Attorney Mike Allen, a legal analyst based in Cincinnati, Ohio, told The Epoch Times: “Even if what Trump said was not accurate, he’s allowed to do that; the First Amendment protects lies. It’s not a pretty thing. But that’s the way it is.”Mr. Trump and his supporters say the latest indictment is another example of a “weaponized” justice system’s disparate treatment of him.

They point out that no one was charged for the false statements that fueled the years-long and costly “Russian collusion” investigations of Mr. Trump. The FBI would never have launched that probe if it had followed its own rules, Special Counsel John Durham concluded in a May report. Further, Mr. Trump and his allies point out that Democrats faced no repercussions for their strenuously objecting to the results of several elections and alleging that Mr. Trump “stole” the 2016 election.

[..] Ms. Habba says that, by bringing the latest charges against Mr. Trump, the government is taking a number of risks. “These cases are tough to prove on a good day, but they [the DOJ prosecutors] also forget that they’ve exposed themselves,” she said. “When you bring a lawsuit, you now open the door to subpoenas. You now open the door to us being able to ask you questions about the legitimacy of the 2020 election, for us being able to look at things like that.” “So, you know, it’s a dangerous proposition, and I’m not sure it was well-thought-through, to be honest,” she said. Ms. Habba called the indictment “sloppy” and said the repeated prosecutions of Mr. Trump have made federal prosecutors’ political motivations very clear. “It’s for the headline, not for the win,” Ms. Habba said.

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“..maybe Smith was referring to the conspiracist and former president Jimmy Carter. He alleged that Trump in 2016 “lost the election, and he was put into office because the Russians interfered on his behalf.”

Two Sets of Laws for Two Americas (Hanson)

Two sets of laws now operate in an increasingly unrecognizable America. Consider the matter of unlawfully removing and storing classified papers. Donald Trump may go to prison for removing contested White House files to his home. So far Joe Biden seems exempt from just such legal jeopardy. But as a senator and Vice President with no right, as does a president, to declassify files, Biden removed and, as a private citizen kept for years classified files in unsecure locations. Biden’s team strangely revealed the unlawful removals after years of silence. It did so because the Biden administration found itself in the untenable position of prosecuting the former president for “crimes” that the current president committed as well—albeit far earlier and longer.

Impeachable phone calls? Donald Trump was impeached by a Democratic House for delaying foreign aid until the Ukrainian government guaranteed that Hunter Biden and his family were no longer engaged in corrupt influence peddling in Kyiv. In addition, the Left charged that Trump was targeting Joe Biden, his possible 2020 rival. Yet Biden, with impunity, bragged that he had fired a Ukrainian prosecutor looking into his own son’s schemes by promising to cancel outright American foreign aid.And the Biden administration’s Justice Department is now targeting Trump, currently the frontrunning challenger to Biden in 2024.

Election denialism? Trump was indicted by Special Counsel Jack Smith, in part for supposedly conspiratorially “unlawfully discounting legitimate votes.” Will Smith then also indict Stacey Abrams? For years Abrams falsely claimed that she was the real governor of Georgia. She toured the country in hopes of “discounting” the state vote count. Or maybe Smith was referring to the conspiracist and former president Jimmy Carter. He alleged that Trump in 2016 “lost the election, and he was put into office because the Russians interfered on his behalf.” Will Smith charge Hillary Clinton? She serially libeled Trump as an “illegitimate” president. Clinton hatched the Russian collusion hoax, and bragged she joined the “Resistance” to continue her attacks on an elected president.

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Let SCOTUS pause the litigation in the campaigns.

My Public Advice To President Trump’s Legal Team … (Mark Levin)

The Biden administration has created a legal morass never seen or experienced in American history, as applies to a presidential election. The attorney general, appointed by the Democrat president, is authorizing indictment after indictment of his president’s possible if not likely political opponent in the middle of a presidential election cycle. He is doing so through his appointment of a special counsel, whose appointment was a misapplication of the special counsel regulation, and whose charges must be approved by the attorney general. (By the way, as an important side issue, Jack Smith is not a presidential appointee; he never even stood for confirmation by the Senate to hold the position he holds and to exercise the authority he is exercising against a party opponent.) It should be noted at the same time, the attorney general refuses to appoint an outside special counsel to investigate his client, Joe Biden, despite the fact that the DOJ regulation was originally instituted for these exact circumstances. Of course, this underscores the purpose and motive of what is taking place before us today.

The attorney general is approving the timing of dozens of charges against the former Republican president, who is actively seeking his party’s nomination to challenge the Democrat president for whom he directly reports, which are intended to cripple the ability of Donald Trump to effectively run for president, regardless of what polls show today. And regardless of what the commentariat say, and despite President Trump’s strength within the Republican Party, the outcome of the election is unknown. Therefore, the polls are irrelevant in this regard. Moreover, as further evidence that these indictments are being used as political weapons are the timing of the charges — specifically, all of these charges by the separate grand juries, all controlled by the special counsel, should have been filed AFTER the election, as there was no possibility the statute of limitations would run on any of them. Further, the special counsel repeatedly insists that the charges must be quickly adjudicated, meaning before the people vote, for the purpose of having maximum influence on the election.

In addition, the charges have resulted in the significant depletion of Trump’s campaign funds to pay for millions in legal fees. Trump has to take significant time from campaigning to address the dozens of charges dropped on him by the Biden administration — that is, he has to expend an enormous amount of time working with his lawyers in order to defend himself from charges that, collectively, would result in his imprisonment until his death.

The fact is that this kind of legal warfare against a presidential and possible if not likely opponent to the present president, is not only unprecedented in the history of our republic it will destroy our electoral system for all time. It is not something that should left to various district courts or local courts to sort out in the course of regular judicial proceedings. In fact, that is part of the intended strategy by the prosecutors who are engaged in this assault on our electoral system. They must not be rewarded for their behavior. They must not be rewarded for their treachery and exploitation of the legal system and the courts to achieve their political ends.

Even without getting to the merits of these multitude of charges, which are easily unraveled from my perspective, the process is what is being used to interfere with the election. And the near silence by those who are orchestrating this shocking legal warfare, when the American people are left in the dark, is untenable.

Therefore, I want to publicly encourage the Trump legal team to seek an emergency hearing before the U.S. Supreme Court, not to resolve legal disputes, but to at least temporarily halt the abomination of this legal warfare that is unfolding in front of us — where Democrats and anti-Trump Republicans are unashamedly celebrating the use of the courts by the Biden administration and Democrat DA’s to further their political wishes, as the rest of the nation watches in shock. This unprecedented legal warfare requires an unprecedented response by the only constitutional body left that can do something about it — the Supreme Court.

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Everything’s for sale..

Chinese Wanted Biden Family Name To Help Acquire US Energy Assets (JTN)

Text messages provided to the FBI show that a Chinese energy conglomerate that struck a controversial deal in 2017 with Hunter Biden began its pursuit of a relationship with the future first family back in late 2015 when Joe Biden was still vice president, hoping to seize on the name of one of America’s most famous political dynasties to provide cover for its ambitious plan to buy up energy assets inside the United States. “There will be a deal between one of the most prominent families from US and them (China) constructed by me,” Hunter Biden’s business partner James Gilliar texted future partner Tony Bobulinski on Christmas Eve 2015, shortly after Hunter Biden had been alerted to CEFC China Energy’s overture and its wealthy leader Ye Jianming.

“I think this will then be a great addition to their portfolios as it will give them a profile base in NYC, then LA, etc,” Gilliar added in the text message obtained by Just the News. “For me it’s a no brainer but culturally they are different, but smart so let’s see. … Any entry ticket is small for them. Easier and better demographic than Arabs who are little anti US after trump,” Gilliar wrote. [..] The text messages obtained by Just the News provide fresh evidence that the Biden family name and “influence” were key to foreign clients like CEFC in communist China. It also corroborates bombshell testimony earlier this week to Congress from another of Hunter Biden’s business partners Devon Archer, who claim Hunter Biden and Joe Biden came as a “brand” package to help foreign clients seeking influence.

The courtship between the Chinese energy firm and Hunter Biden started slowly, according to the text messages and separate emails from a Hunter Biden laptop the FBI seized in December 2019. Hunter Biden didn’t connect with Ye for a planned dinner in Washington D.C. on Dec. 6, 2015 that was going to be hosted by Serbian businessman named Vuc Jeremic, according to the emails and news reports. But the vice presidential son did meet later that month with CEFC Executive Director Jianjun Zang, according to Hunter Biden’s schedules on his now-infamous laptop. By mid-March 2016 – 10 months before Joe Biden would leave office – the discussions had advanced far enough that two of Hunter Biden’s business partners, Rob Walker and Gilliar, had drafted a memo for Hunter Biden to sign and send to CEFC, according to an email on Hunter Biden’s laptop entitled “H to Zang Draft.”“Take a look and let me know. Very simple. Once ok’d. I’ll send to Joan to sign?” Walker wrote Hunter Biden. “Yes,” Hunter Biden replied.

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“..a year ago, the West was screaming about the necessity to urgently feed those starving, and when nobody was fed besides [the West] itself, they are screaming that Russian grain is superfluous in the market..”

Zakharova Slams Borrell’s Remarks On Russia Creating ‘New Dependencies’ (TASS)

Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova has branded EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell’s recent remarks that Russia was purportedly creating the dependency of developing nations on its grain shipments as a farce. “Am I not getting something, has hunger already been conquered? Aren’t there any problems with food security? This is some kind of a farce, a year ago, the West was screaming about the necessity to urgently feed those starving, and when nobody was fed besides [the West] itself, they are screaming that Russian grain is superfluous in the market,” the diplomat wrote on her Telegram channel. On August 1, according to Reuters, the EU sent a letter to developing countries and the Group of 20 saying that Russia was offering cheap grain “to create new dependencies by exacerbating economic vulnerabilities and global food insecurity.”.

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They don’t need a currency; they have plenty intruments.

Kremlin Pours Cold Water On BRICS Currency Speculation (RT)

Introducing a single currency in the BRICS group of developing countries would be difficult to do in the short term, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Thursday. The economic bloc comprising Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa has been debating the feasibility of creating a common currency for global trade as an alternative to the US dollar. The idea is supported by numerous other nations that want to join BRICS. “Certainly, expert discussions are underway about the possibility, expediency and feasibility of plans to introduce the national currency of some kind of integration processes. This is still a discussion process; it is clear that it will be protracted in time,” Peskov stated.

He, however, added that while “in the short term, this is hardly feasible, the use of national currencies is already a reality that is growing on a global scale, and this practice is resorted to not only by countries that face sanction limitations, but by those that do not.” According to Peskov, countries understand the benefits of this when conducting foreign trade. The BRICS nations have been seeking to shift further away from the US dollar in mutual trade, with the de-dollarization trend gaining momentum following sanctions that effectively cut Russia off from the Western financial system.

Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva has stated that developing nations should move away from the greenback in favor of their own currencies in order to push back against American dominance over the global financial system. Meanwhile, South Africa’s Foreign Minister Naledi Pandor has said that the bloc should carefully discuss the idea, warning that de-dollarization would be complex and that there would be no guarantee of success. Moscow floated the idea of introducing a BRICS currency last year. President Vladimir Putin said last June that member states were working on developing a new reserve currency based on a basket of the national currencies used by the five-nation bloc.

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Otto Frank 1960

 

 

Support the Automatic Earth in wartime with Paypal, Bitcoin and Patreon.

 

 

 

 

 

Jul 122023
 
 July 12, 2023  Posted by at 8:55 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , ,  39 Responses »


René Magritte The voice of blood 1948

 

Ceasefire and Peace Talks Should Be Focus of NATO Summit (CD)
NATO Summit, a Theater of the Absurd (Scott Ritter)
Understanding The NATO Summit (Kim Dotcom)
Stoltenberg: No Point in Discussing NATO Membership if Kiev Loses (Sp.)
Should Ukraine Join NATO? Don’t Kid Yourself: It Already Has (Tracey)
China Warns Against NATO Expansion Into Asia-Pacific (RT)
Ukraine Lost 26,000 Troops and 3,000 Arms In Counteroffensive – Shoigu (Sp.)
Trump Slams Biden Over Cluster Bombs For Ukraine (RT)
NATO Neck Deep In Ukraine Conflict Due To Weapons Pipeline – Zakharova (TASS)
Underestimate Russia at Your Own Risk (NC)
US Trying To Use Foreign Mercenaries To Plug Gaps In Ukraine (Marsden)
The Blob Begins to Quiver (Kunstler)
Judge Refuses Hold On Order Limiting Admin Contact With Social Media (AP)
The Truth About Bidenomics: More Debt, More Inflation (Lacalle)
Putin Issues Warning About US Banking System (RT)

 

 

 

 

RFK Camus

 

 

RFK Wuhan
https://twitter.com/i/status/1678816812119519254

 

 

 

 

Kiev Nov 2013

 

 

EP
https://twitter.com/i/status/1678806221254426633

 

 

 

 

 

 

“..It does not have the right to encourage escalation of a war where there will be no winners.”

Ceasefire and Peace Talks Should Be Focus of NATO Summit (CD)

The start of NATO’s annual summit in Vilnius, Lithuania on Tuesday has been dominated by talk of maintaining the flow of weapons to Ukraine and potentially expanding the Western military alliance to include the war-ravaged nation as its conflict with invading Russian forces drags on. But anti-war campaigners argued that approach is a recipe for a prolonged and possibly larger military conflict, one that could ultimately involve nuclear weapons. Lindsey German, a founding member and convenor of the United Kingdom-based Stop the War Coalition, wrote Monday ahead of the two-day summit that “a ceasefire and peace talks are the only means to end this bloody spiral,” warning a primary focus on weaponry and NATO expansion would signal that “Western powers are preparing for an even greater war.”

The alternative to serious peace negotiations, German wrote, is that the war “grinds on, with battles such as Bakhmut increasingly resembling those of the First World War. And that further ‘red lines’ are crossed—more cruise missiles, more cluster bombs. And then what? Tactical nuclear weapons?” “While Ukraine has every right to defend itself from the invasion and war with Russia, it does not have the right to demand weapons which even the British government has said it will not send,” German added, referring to cluster munitions—weapons that the U.S. is preparing to send Ukraine. “It does not have the right to encourage escalation of a war where there will be no winners.” “A ceasefire and peace talks are the only means to end this bloody spiral.”

NATO leaders gathered in Lithuania for the 2023 summit are reportedly expected to issue a statement pledging to “extend an invitation” to Ukraine to join the military alliance once “allies agree and conditions are met,” offering no specific timeline. U.S. President Joe Biden endorsed the draft communique on Tuesday. But Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, who is in attendance at the NATO summit, criticized the available details of the document, saying it “seems there is no readiness neither to invite Ukraine to NATO nor to make it a member of the alliance.”

Ukraine’s push to join NATO was recently backed by dozens of “foreign policy experts,” many of whom work for organizations that receive funding from weapons companies and industry lobbyists. Eli Clifton of Responsible Statecraft reported that 21 of the 46 signatories to a new open letter supporting Ukraine’s NATO bid “are associated with institutions with financial ties to the weapons industry, an industry that presumably stands to benefit from the policy recommendations laid out in a letter that had a particular focus on providing more Western weapons to Ukraine, a fact not shared with readers.”

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Check out the doc.

NATO Summit, a Theater of the Absurd (Scott Ritter)

NATO had placed high hopes on the Ukrainian army being able to carry out a counteroffensive against Russia which would achieve discernable results both in terms of territory re-captured and casualties inflicted on the Russian army. The results, however, have been dismal to date — tens of thousands of Ukrainian casualties and thousands of destroyed vehicles while failing to breach even the first line of the Russian defenses. One of the challenges NATO will face in Vilnius is the question of how to recover from this setback. Many NATO countries are starting to exhibit “Ukraine fatigue” as they see their armories stripped bare and their coffers emptied in what, by every measurement, appears to be a losing cause.

The scope and scale of the Ukrainian military defeat is such that the focus of many NATO members appears to be shifting from the unrealistic goal of strategically defeating Russia to a more realistic objective of bringing about a cessation to the conflict that preserves Ukraine as a viable nation state. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky will attend the NATO summit. However, his demands for NATO membership will not be met — U.S. President Joe Biden himself has weighed in on the matter, saying this would not be possible while Ukraine is at war with Russia. There will be face-saving gestures from NATO, such as the creation of a NATO-Ukraine Council and talk of eventual post-conflict security guarantees.

But the reality is Zelensky’s presence will do Ukraine more harm than good, since it will only accentuate the internal disagreement within NATO on the issue of Ukrainian membership and highlight NATO’s impotence when it comes to doing anything that can meaningfully alter the current trajectory on the battlefield, which is heading toward a strategic defeat for both Ukraine and NATO. The vision of the Madrid summit was that of NATO capitalizing on its strategic victory against Russia to further expand its ranks in Europe (both Finland and Sweden were invited), and to push its influence into the Pacific Ocean. While NATO’s Pacific partners (Australia, New Zealand, Japan and South Korea) have been invited to Vilnius, the hopes that their presence would coincide with the announcement of the opening of a NATO liaison office in Japan have been quashed by France, which objects to an alliance ostensibly focused on North Atlantic security becoming involved in the Pacific.

A Scott Ritter Investigation: Agent Zelensky – Part 1

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Twitter thread.

“NATO has lost this war. Biden has lost this war. The lunatic Democrats have lost this war. The uni-party warmongers have lost this war. The EU has lost this war. Ukraine and Zelensky have lost this war.”

Understanding The NATO Summit (Kim Dotcom)

:The steam for the US proxy war in Ukraine is running out. No commitment is given to Ukraine to obtain NATO membership because the West has come to realize that they can’t win a war against Russia and that peace will only be possible with a neutral Ukraine. Ukraine will never be a member of NATO. Zelenskyy has realized this and is fuming in Vilnius, attacking NATO as disrespectful and calling the conditions absurd. In a moment of clarity he acknowledged what’s really going on: “It seems there is no readiness neither to invite Ukraine to NATO nor to make it a member of the Alliance. This means a window of opportunity is being left to bargain Ukraine’s membership in NATO in negotiations with Russia.”

That’s exactly right. NATO has lost this war. Biden has lost this war. The lunatic Democrats have lost this war. The uni-party warmongers have lost this war. The EU has lost this war. Ukraine and Zelensky have lost this war. Russia wins and rightfully so because everything that happened in Ukraine was a fraud against the Ukrainian people perpetrated by a failing US empire in its final stand against a rising multipolar world. Zelenskyy was never a leader who did what’s best for his people. He will be remembered as a US puppet and actor for foreign interests. 350,000 Ukrainians dead because of him and his puppet masters in the US. He lost $12.7 trillion worth of land and resources to Russia because he did not sign the reasonable peace agreement that Russia had proposed to him.

Instead he fell for empty promises from Biden that the US will support Ukraine until victory. What a fool. The good news is this war may be over soon. The West has lost its appetite to throw more money into the Ukrainian black hole. With the US and EU entering recession they have enough problems at home. Protests and riots will become regular news. Biden wouldn’t stand a chance in the next election. His brain is Swiss cheese and the only alternative for the Democrats is Kennedy. Trump will use the fatal mistake in Ukraine and the dire economic outlook of the US to run a successful campaign. Kennedy, who says all the right things, would be his only real obstacle but the Democrats have messed their country up so royally that Trump seems like the only choice.

The reality is that it doesn’t matter who the next US president is. The insurmountable debt burden combined with de-dollarization in global trade and the rise of BRICS+ are going to send the US into a decade long depression with unseen levels of poverty and violence. Hopefully humanity dodged a bullet and nuclear war is no longer imminent. At least that is my read of the situation right now. But things could flare up again if peace negotiations fail. Russia may be tempted to take Odessa and turn Ukraine into rump state without access to the sea. Russia is holding all the cards. Let’s see how Putin plays them.

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Does anyone doubt it will?

Stoltenberg: No Point in Discussing NATO Membership if Kiev Loses (Sp.)

NATO summit kicked off on Tuesday with the focus on Ukraine possible invitation to the alliance. Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg stressed that the Eastern European state would join the bloc when all member states agree on it and if it meets all the conditions. There is no point in discussing Ukraine’s NATO membership if Kiev does not prevail in the ongoing conflict, Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said on Tuesday. “I think all allies agree that when a war is going on that’s not the time for making the Ukraine the full member of the alliance,” he stressed. “We also made clear that we will issue an invitation for Ukraine to join NATO when allies agree and conditions are met,” Stoltenberg told a press conference. The secretary general also said that the procedure does not have a specific time frame.

In the final communiqué, NATO members confirmed that they see Ukraine in the alliance in the future. “We fully support Ukraine’s right to choose its own security arrangements,” the document says. “Ukraine’s future is in NATO. We reaffirm the commitment we made at the 2008 Summit in Bucharest that Ukraine will become a member of NATO, and today we recognise that Ukraine’s path to full Euro-Atlantic integration has moved beyond the need for the Membership Action Plan.” Per the NATO communiqué, Ukraine has become increasingly interoperable and politically integrated with the transatlantic alliance and “made substantial progress on its reform path.” The alliance particularly referred to the 1997 Charter on a Distinctive Partnership between NATO and Ukraine and the 2009 Complement, stressing that NATO member states will continue to support and review Ukraine’s “progress on interoperability” and “additional democratic and security sector reforms that are required.”

“NATO Foreign Ministers will regularly assess progress through the adapted Annual National Programme. The Alliance will support Ukraine in making these reforms on its path towards future membership. We will be in a position to extend an invitation to Ukraine to join the Alliance when Allies agree and conditions are met,” the document reads. The bloc has announced the establishment of the NATO-Ukraine Council, a new joint body where NATO member states and Ukraine would sit as “equal members” to advance political dialogue, cooperation and “Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic aspirations for membership in the alliance.” sStill, the Kiev leadership is seeking admission to NATO in an expedited manner insisting that no other decision will suit Ukraine. On the opening day of the NATO summit in Vilnius, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky tweeted that it is “absurd” that there is no time frame for inviting Ukraine to the alliance.

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“..who needs the bother of formal NATO membership anyway, when you can sneak in through the back door?”

Should Ukraine Join NATO? Don’t Kid Yourself: It Already Has (Tracey)

As NATO members gather in Lithuania this week with traditional Eastern European fanfare, the chief focus of their deliberations is whether to extend formal membership to Ukraine amid the ongoing war. But the question of whether Ukraine officially joins NATO may have turned into something of a red herring. The truth is Ukraine has already been unofficially incorporated into NATO. As University of Chicago international relations professor Paul Poast, a passionate advocate for NATO’s swift admittance of Ukraine, aptly put it, “NATO has already expanded into the war zone. The allies should just acknowledge that reality.”

A year and a half into the war, it can hardly be denied that NATO forces have gained substantially more than the mere “foothold” in Ukraine that Russian President Vladimir Putin claimed to have launched his invasion of Ukraine to preempt. With the U.S. effectively assuming financial, material, political, strategic, and operational dominion over Ukrainian state warfare, the “foothold” has turned into a heavily-fortified bridgehead. Rockets lobbed at Russian troop positions are ultimately the product of U.S. commanders “controlling every shot,” as Ukrainian officials have occasionally acknowledged. A great deal of American engineering ingenuity is currently being harnessed to pulverize Russians. But as Putin is keenly aware, much of this U.S. and NATO “infrastructure” had been well-established long before any invasion was launched.

For example, exactly two years earlier to the day of Putin’s invasion of Ukraine, on February 24, 2020, the nascent government of Volodmyr Zelensky decreed what was hailed as being Ukraine’s first “comprehensive and systematic” framework to achieve “the full Euro-Atlantic integration of the state” with particular emphasis on “deepening cooperation with NATO.” Almost exactly one year before that, in February 2019, an amendment to the Ukrainian Constitution was passed proclaiming that it was a non-negotiable national priority for Ukraine to pursue “full-fledged” NATO membership at the earliest possible opportunity. By June of 2019, Ukraine received an unusual prize: certification for one of its more seasoned Special Forces units to join the “NATO Response Force,” a specialized “rapid deployment” alliance formation which had been nurtured to life in 2002 by the famously foresighted Donald Rumsfeld. The summer before the invasion started, U.S. and Ukraine special forces convened their largest-ever joint “multinational maritime exercise” in the Black Sea.

Given all of this, who needs the bother of formal NATO membership anyway, when you can sneak in through the back door? Steady incremental assimilation seems like much less of a headache than the customary slog of conventional ratification. And then when the question of full membership does arise, proponents have been handed an argument on a platter: With NATO irreversibly entrenched in Ukraine already, it may as well just dispense with the niceties and go all the way. Oleksii Reznikov, the Ukrainian Defense Minister, is fond of declaring that Ukraine has already “de facto joined the Alliance,” given the massive surge in joint war-planning activity. And no existing alliance member seemed compelled to dispute Reznikov’s characterization—which is perfectly intuitive, given that Ukraine has been furnished over the past year and a half with what is essentially a brand new military, conveniently up to NATO specifications fresh out the box.

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“They also accused Beijing of posing “cyber, space, hybrid and other asymmetric threats,” and of engaging in “the malicious use of emerging and disruptive technologies.”

China Warns Against NATO Expansion Into Asia-Pacific (RT)

The Chinese government has urged NATO not to expand into the Asia-Pacific, warning that it would retaliate to any increased Western military presence in the region after the alliance criticized Beijing during its summit in Lithuania. China’s Mission to the European Union issued a statement on Tuesday in response to NATO’s joint communique, which accused Beijing of pursuing “coercive policies” that “challenge” Western interests. “The China-related content of the communique disregards basic facts, wantonly distorts China’s position and policies, and deliberately discredits China. We firmly oppose and reject this,” the Chinese diplomats said. The statement went on to pledge that Beijing would “safeguard its sovereignty” and oppose “NATO’s eastward expansion into the Asia-Pacific.”

It added that “any actions that damage China’s legitimate rights and interests will be met with a resolute response.” Leaders of the Western military alliance met on Tuesday in the Lithuanian capital, Vilnius, to discuss additional aid to Ukraine, among other matters. They also accused Beijing of posing “cyber, space, hybrid and other asymmetric threats,” and of engaging in “the malicious use of emerging and disruptive technologies.” The Chinese EU mission argued that NATO had failed to reflect on its own responsibilities, and instead “blindly blames other countries, keeps meddling in extraterritorial affairs [and] creates confrontation.”

It added that the bloc’s “ambitions for expansion and hegemony are obvious,” and warned that its status as a “nuclear alliance” would only “further aggravate regional tensions.” The statement comes after Chinese officials warned against the opening of a NATO liaison office in Japan, which would mark the bloc’s first facility in Asia. Though Tokyo indicated it was considering the idea, France has reportedly shot down the project, insisting NATO should remain confined to the North Atlantic. The relations between the US and China have deteriorated significantly in recent years, with countries clashing over Taiwan, global trade, and human rights.

Beijing’s remarks on NATO’s expansion echo previous criticisms from Moscow, which has repeatedly decried the alliance’s gradual expansion eastward in recent decades, and stressed that it considers Western military sites close to its borders a threat to national security. NATO has rejected these claims, insisting that the supply of heavy weapons to Ukraine does not make the alliance a party to the Russia-Ukraine conflict. Kiev had hoped it would be offered a clear path to NATO membership at the Vilnius summit on Tuesday, but was disappointed after the alliance reiterated its prior promises to admit Ukraine as a member at some point in the future, after its armed conflict with Russia is resolved.

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“We know that the results of our combat work are carefully monitored and analyzed by foreign intelligence services..”

Ukraine Lost 26,000 Troops and 3,000 Arms In Counteroffensive – Shoigu (Sp.)

Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu reported about the situation in special military operation zone. Shoigu stressed that Kiev failed to achieve its goals in all directions and lost roughly 26 thousands of troops and 3 thousands of military equipment. “To sum up some results, what did they achieve for this widely promoted and announced, as they called it, strategic counteroffensive. As a result, what have they got approaching the NATO summit? Since June 4, the enemy’s losses have amounted to more than 26,000 military and 3,000 units of various weapons,” Defense Minister stressed. Russian army decimated 21 Ukrainian aircraft, 5 helicopters, over 1200 tanks and other armored vehicles, including 17 Leopards.

He stressed that Kiev continues to unsuccessfully try to break through the defense of the Russian military in different directions, and several waves of attacks have been launched in two days, the minister said. “They are actively fighting, trying to break through our defenses in different directions. Just over the past two days, several waves of attacks have been launched,” the minister said. High-precision strikes of the Russian military against the reserves of the Ukrainian military, including Western equipment, significantly reduce the offensive potential of the enemy, the minister concluded. Shoigu stressed that should the US supply Ukraine with cluster munitions, the Russian Armed Forces would use similar arms against Kiev militants. Sergey Shoigu added that the Russian Armed Forces launched its own counterattack in Krasny Liman direction and advanced 1.5 km.

The intelligence services of the United States and other NATO countries carefully monitor and analyze the results of the combat work of the Russian military, Shoigu stressed. “We know that the results of our combat work are carefully monitored and analyzed by foreign intelligence services, primarily the United States and NATO countries,” Shoigu said. Western intelligence agencies note the high efficiency of the defense of the Russian armed forces, minefields, preemptive airstrikes, as well as the highest resilience of the Russian military and the prompt response measures of commanders, the minister concluded. Russian President Vladimir Putin carefully monitors the situation – he is is briefed twice a day by the command of the Combined Group, as well as individual commanders with detailed reports on the current situation of the special military operation, Shoigu said.

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“Joe Biden is needlessly and dangerously leading us into World War three, which would be a nightmare beyond imagination—obliteration!”

Trump Slams Biden Over Cluster Bombs For Ukraine (RT)

In sending Kiev cluster bombs, the US government is “dragging us further toward World War Three,” former US president Donald Trump warned on Tuesday. President Joe Biden “should be trying to end the war and stop the horrific death and destruction being caused by an incompetent administration,” Trump said in a statement posted on his Truth Social platform. The 45th US president objected to the use of cluster munitions on both humanitarian and strategic grounds, pointing to the fact that unexploded ordnance “will be killing and maiming innocent Ukrainian men, women, and children for decades to come,” long after the war has ended.

Trump also called out Biden’s statement, made in an interview with CNN’s Fareed Zakaria over the weekend, that cluster munitions were being sent because the US has run out of conventional 155mm artillery shells. If true, Trump retorted, this “only further emphasizes the urgency of immediately deescalating this bloody, dangerous, and out of control conflict.” “It certainly means we should not be sending Ukraine our last stockpiles at a time when our own arsenals, according to Crooked Joe Biden, are so perilously diminished,” the former president added, arguing that Biden’s policy of “endless war” in Ukraine has “tremendously weakened” the US.

“Joe Biden is needlessly and dangerously leading us into World War three, which would be a nightmare beyond imagination—obliteration!” Trump said. Trump, who currently leads the polls for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination, vowed to achieve “peace through strength” once he returns to office after the next election. The White House announced last week it would send dual-purpose improved conventional munitions (DPICM) artillery shells to Ukraine. Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Colin Kahl told reporters that the danger the munitions, which are banned in over 100 countries, pose to civilians was diminished because a Russian victory in the conflict would be far worse. He also accused Russia of having used the weapons in Ukraine.

Moscow has denied the US allegations. Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu said on Tuesday that if any US cluster munitions make it to Ukraine, the Russian military will respond with equivalent weapons of its own that are “much more effective” and “diverse.” The US offer of cluster munitions has been condemned by the UN, NATO allies such as the UK, Canada and Spain, as well as members of Biden’s own party in the US House of Representatives. “Either cluster bombs are bad, or they are not bad. You can’t determine the value of a cluster bomb based on who’s being blown up by it,” comedian and podcast host Russell Brand said on Tuesday.

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“It is NATO that has pushed the Kiev regime this far..”

NATO Neck Deep In Ukraine Conflict Due To Weapons Pipeline – Zakharova (TASS)

NATO is deeply involved in the conflict in Ukraine through the bloc’s provision of weapons, mercenaries, funds and intelligence to Ukraine, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said in an interview with Qatar’s Al Jazeera television. “Do you really think that NATO is not at war with Russia? In fact, it’s NATO that provides all of the weapons, fighters, mercenaries, instructors, advisors and intelligence data to the Kiev regime. NATO is definitely involved in these military activities; there is no doubt about it. It is NATO that has pushed the Kiev regime this far,” she noted.


On February 24, 2022, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced a special military operation based on a request from the heads of the Donbass republics amid escalating tensions in the region, with the authorities in the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) and Lugansk People’s Republic (LPR) reporting some of the heaviest Ukrainian shelling up to that time. In response, the West imposed major sanctions on Russia. In addition, Western countries started to provide weapons and military equipment to Kiev, the aggregate value of which is currently estimated in the billions of dollars. However, the Kiev authorities have repeatedly demanded that Ukrainian forces be provided with yet more weapons and more advanced equipment, long-range missiles and aircraft.

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Operation Barbarossa.

Underestimate Russia at Your Own Risk (NC)

In honor of the NATO summit July 11 and 12, this is a comparison of how the Nazi leadership in World War Two and today’s collective West similarly underestimated Russia and overestimated their capabilities. Despite Russia’s overwhelming upper hand in Ukraine, Western officials and media continue to largely pump sunshine and weave stories of Russian collapse. There are increasing breaks in the fever, and it looks like maybe, hopefully the acceptance of the loss is gaining traction in Washington. Meanwhile, the unwillingness or inability for hardliners to objectively assess efforts against Russia occurs today just as it did during Operation Barbarossa. As Seymour Hersh writes:

“There is an enormous gap between the way the professionals in the American intelligence community assess the situation and what the White House and the supine Washington press project to the public by uncritically reproducing the statements of Blinken and his hawkish cohorts.” This too is reminiscent of the Nazi offensive against the Soviet Union when the failure was hidden from the German public. Adding to the similarities is the fact that both the Third Reich command and today’s officials in the West simultaneously downplay Russia’s military capabilities while endlessly hyping the threat from Moscow. Hitler, similar to so many Western “experts” and officials today, mocked Russia’s supposed backwardness while also hyping the threat “Slavic Bolshevism” posed to the West.

The progression of his comments show him seesawing between a reluctant acceptance and desperate hope as his miscalculations of Russia slowly dawn on him. It’s a path today’s governments in the West are still discovering. On the other hand, Goebbel’s diary entries are faster to admit that Operation Barbarossa was a disaster. Prior to the operation, he writes how there is no way the USSR could hope to oppose “the strongest army in all of history” and adds that “I consider the Russian military force to be very weak, even weaker than the Fuhrer believes. If anything is a sure thing, it is this.”

Indeed, German high command anticipated a quick collapse of Soviet resistance along the lines of the Blitzkrieg in Poland, but within a few weeks of the launch of the German offensive, it’s clear that Berlin underestimated the Russians. And the winter of 1941-42 saw the Nazi war machine stopped 12 miles short of Moscow and then driven back. It was all downhill from there. Despite evidence that Russian resistance was much more capable than anticipated, Hitler continues to talk of Russian inferiority and a breakup of the country for months before a realization of the situation begins to set in. Read in tandem with Goebbels’ more honest diary entries, it calls to mind today’s battle within the Blob between the realists and anti-Russian fanatics.

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“You’d think he’d have taken an offramp at that point. Nope, not Rambo here.”

US Trying To Use Foreign Mercenaries To Plug Gaps In Ukraine (Marsden)

Western mercenaries from countries other than the US are dying for Washington’s interests while President Joe Biden warns Americans themselves to stay away. Most of the foreign mercenaries in Ukraine at this point aren’t American, according to Russia’s Channel One news. It’s actually Poland and Canada that lead the charge, with the US coming in third. And now reports are starting to emerge of US intelligence attempting to fill the void with even more foreign recruits to fight for US interests against Russia in Ukraine. The Russian Ministry of Defense estimates that about 2,000 of the approximately 7,000 ‘volunteers’ have been killed. Recent reporting reveals a troubling trend among Western mercenary deaths: combatants whose military experience is virtually non-existent.

Presumably it all looked like good Hollywood action hero fun from afar — until the bullets started whizzing by. In a story published in May about two Canadian mercenaries who volunteered for Ukraine’s “International Legion” and were killed in the Artyomovsk (named Bakhmut by Ukraine) battle, the CBC revealed that one had previously served in the Canadian Forces as a medic and had been photographed working in search and rescue in Kharkov. Kyle Porter, a 27-year old from Calgary, had been in touch with Canada’s state broadcaster. “Let me figure out how I am going to survive the next few days,” he wrote. “It was a meat grinder the first time and I’m not expecting it any better this time around.” You’d think he’d have taken an offramp at that point. Nope, not Rambo here.

The question that everyone should be asking is how on earth Canadians, whose combat experience amounts to administering band-aids and applying tourniquets, could subsequently end up serving on the front lines — all while the Canadian government seemingly just shrugs. We’re talking here about a government that legislated zero-risk against overwhelmingly survivable Covid, but now can’t even be bothered to save unprepared Canadians from a much more likely death in Ukraine. Last May, the CBC reported on yet another Canadian veteran, identified only as “Shadow,” describing how he and his colleagues had repeatedly come under fire in the Donbas.

While “Shadow” might seem like a code name for a main character in a Hollywood movie about a badass who goes around single-handedly meting out justice, in reality he’s a meteorological technician who “experienced combat for the first time as a volunteer in Ukraine,” according to the report. The weather guy probably shouldn’t be placed in a position to be “blown out of their sniper’s nest by a shell.” For all his weather expertise, Shadow doesn’t seem to be too well-versed in grand chess geopolitics either. “If NATO had stepped in, the war would have been done in like less than a week, but because everyone sat back and watched, well, we are seeing all those civilians dying,” he told the CBC. Actually, direct NATO military confrontation with Russia would have resulted in World War III, and probably a few more civilian deaths than Shadow imagines.

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“..the US reduced in a few short years to a broke, socially disordered, marginalized power susceptible to its own political breakup..”

The Blob Begins to Quiver (Kunstler)

One likely, reality-based alternative is to stand by and let Russia complete its Special Military Operation to pacify and neutralize Ukraine. The prevailing theory is that this would be the end of America’s world dominance militarily, and effectively the end of NATO, but also the end financially for the US, as the non-West abandons the dollar. In that scenario, the BRICs dump their trillions in US bond holdings, sending all that putative “money” back to America, stoking a king-hell inflation, effectively bankrupting us. It would be the final fruit of the disastrous “Joe Biden” regime imposed on us via election fraud by the Blob: the US reduced in a few short years to a broke, socially disordered, marginalized power susceptible to its own political breakup — not a tantalizing outcome, but perhaps better than turning the planet Earth into a smoldering ashtray.

That outcome would force our country to turn inward and face its own stupendous failures of honor, decency, and integrity. It would be the end of the Blob’s hegemony inside the USA. The question is whether the Blob sets America’s house on fire in the attempt to save itself and escape a legal accounting for its crimes. One kindling stack already burning is the pile-up of jive prosecutions aimed at Mr. Trump. You know that the attempt to kick him off the game-board using Special Counsel Jack Smith may easily lead to severe civil disorder, and possibly a counter-coup, a US first!

The current Mar-a-Lago “Doc Box” case is as much a complete fabrication as were RussiaGate and Impeachment Number One — Mr. Trump’s telephone inquiry to Ukraine about the Biden family grifting operations there, now firmly documented to be true. An upright judge would summarily dismiss the Mar-a-Lago case and slam sanctions on the US attorneys involved, including disbarment and criminal investigation for mounting a maliciously fraudulent prosecution. AG Merrick Garland and his deputy, Lisa Monaco, obviously would have some ‘splainin’ to do, possibly before juries.

A long list of public figures populating the Blob await a reckoning: Hillary and Bill Clinton and their retainers, Barack Obama and retinue, John Brennan, James Clapper, James Comey, Christopher Wray (plus Rosenstein, Strzok, McCabe, Carlin, Ohr, Mueller, Weissmann, Horowitz, Atkinson, Ciaramella, Vindman), Rep. Adam Schiff, Senator Mark Warner, William Barr, Avril Haines, Marie Yovanovitch, William Burns, James Boasberg, Marc Elias, Michael Bromwich, David Laufman, Alejandro Mayorkas, Xavier Baccerra, Anthony Fauci, Rochelle Walensky, Francis Collins, Lloyd Austin. Mark Milley, Antony Blinken, Jake Sullivan, Ron Klain, Nancy Pelosi, Liz Cheney… the list goes way on, but there’s a start.

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“COVID-19 vaccines, legal issues involving President Joe Biden’s son Hunter and election fraud allegations were among the topics spotlighted in the lawsuit..“

Judge Refuses Hold On Order Limiting Admin Contact With Social Media (AP)

The Biden administration asked a federal appeals court Monday to temporarily block a lower court’s order limiting executive branch officials’ discussions with social media companies about controversial online posts. The request for an emergency stay was filed at the 5th U.S. District Court of Appeals shortly after U.S. District Judge Terry Doughty rejected an administration motion that he put his own July 4 order on hold. The order came in a lawsuit filed by Republican attorneys general in Louisiana and Missouri, as well as a conservative website owner and four individual critics of government COVID-19 policies. The lawsuit claimed the administration, in effect, censored free speech by using threats of regulatory action or protection while pressuring companies to remove what it deemed misinformation.

COVID-19 vaccines, legal issues involving President Joe Biden’s son Hunter and election fraud allegations were among the topics spotlighted in the lawsuit. Doughty was nominated to the federal bench by former President Donald Trump. His injunction blocked the Department of Health and Human Services, the FBI and multiple other government agencies and administration officials from meeting with or contacting social media companies for the purpose of “encouraging, pressuring, or inducing in any manner the removal, deletion, suppression, or reduction of content containing protected free speech.” Administration attorneys said in the motion filed at the 5th Circuit that Doughty’s ruling was too broad and vague, and had the potential to chill government officials’ speech on important matters.

And they said Doughty failed to point to any evidence that the administration had made threats against social media companies to coerce them to take down posts. “The district court identified no evidence suggesting that a threat accompanied any request for the removal of content. Indeed, the order denying the stay — presumably highlighting the ostensibly strongest evidence — referred to ‘a series of public media statements,’” the administration said. They asked that the 5th Circuit block Doughty’s order while the case is pursued at the appeals court in New Orleans or, at minimum, grant a 10-day block of the order so the administration could prepare to go to the Supreme Court to seek a longer stay.

Earlier Monday, Doughty rejected administration requests that he stay his own order pending appeal. “In essence,” Doughty’s Monday order said, “Defendants argue that the injunction should be stayed because it might interfere with the Government’s ability to continue working with social-media companies to censor Americans’ core political speech on the basis of viewpoint. In other words, the Government seeks a stay of the injunction so that it can continue violating the First Amendment.”

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“..the bottom 40 percent of the income distribution now has liquid assets worth $1,200 less than they did before covid..”

The Truth About Bidenomics: More Debt, More Inflation (Lacalle)

Estimates of United States growth have improved but remain massively below the Federal Reserve projections. After the largest monetary and fiscal stimulus in recent years, growth remains well below trend, and debt is significantly higher. It is interesting to hear Janet Yellen say that “trickle-down economics did not work” when this is the failed trickle-down: massive government deficit spending leads to negative real wage growth and weaker GDP.Current consensus real GDP growth for 4Q23 stands at 0.2 percent, significantly lower than the median projection of one percent in the FOMC’s June Summary of Economic Projections. The latest figure, for example, shows evidence of headline strength hiding weakness in the details.

New durable-goods orders surged in May, but this headline growth disguised that core capital-goods orders were revised down again. Even if we consider the optimistic assumptions of the Biden administration, which assume a two percent per annum GDP growth until 2032 and 3.8 percent unemployment, the United States federal government deficit would not fall below five percent of GDP even in 2032. That is a deficit that rises from $1.1 trillion in 2023 to $2.01 trillion in 2032, an accumulated deficit between 2023 and 2032 of $15.46 trillion. That is a 106 percent debt to GDP, according to the Biden administration calculations even with very bullish estimates of growth that consider no recession or stagnation in the entire forecast period.

One of the biggest problems of this neo-Keynesian approach to government budgets is that it leaves households with less money in real terms, and the “anti-inflation” measures increase debt and inflation. Take the American Rescue Plan. It was supposed to be the helicopter money solution to the crisis, giving families cash and supporting consumption through the pandemic. Adjusted for inflation, Bloomberg Economics estimates the average household in the bottom 40 percent of the income distribution now has liquid assets worth $1,200 less than they did before covid. You wanted the stimulus check? With printed money? You paid for it multiple times over in higher inflation. The other key policy items of the Biden administration, the Inflation Reduction Act, the CHIPS and Science Act, and the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, were created to incentivize aggregate demand and boost investment in areas where the private sector seemed to be underinvesting. However, it was not the case.

The problem is that the government does not have more or better information about the requirements of the real economy, assumes erroneously that the private sector did not invest because of some flaw in the market, and these massive federal expenditure programs generate more inflation as they add artificial demand created with newly printed units of currency to an economy that is already working at full capacity and full employment. Thus, it puts more fuel to the fire of inflation. Bloomberg Economics warns that “If successful, the benefits of these projects will play out in the long term – and other deliverables, like reduced dependence on China and lower carbon emissions, won’t show up directly in the GDP data. In the near term, our view is that the costs in terms of higher inflation and recession risks offset the benefits and may even outweigh them”. Even if we assume a benign view of multiplier effects, the result is that these plans accelerate the risk of a recession by artificially tightening an already strong labor market and putting more pressure on supply chains.

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Andrey Kostin does the warning.

Putin Issues Warning About US Banking System (RT)

The increase in the level of sovereignty and independence of the Russian banking sector has been quite timely, given the negative trends that are growing globally, namely in the US banking system, Russian President Vladimir Putin has stated. Putin was meeting with Andrey Kostin, the CEO of Russia’s second-largest bank, VTB, who assured the president that the country’s banking sector was secure. “Regarding anti-Russia sanctions, we have probably become somewhat immune because of them, and we have enhanced our sovereignty in this field,” Kostin told the Russian leader in Kremlin on Tuesday. “Look at what is now happening in the United States. This is virtually the largest financial and banking crisis since 2008, and it is already spreading to Europe,” the Russian top banker noted, adding “that sanctions against Russia are a double-edged sword.”


By imposing economic restrictions against Moscow, the West has “demolished the global trade system and caused an inflation surge,” while its attempts to resolve this problem by standard methods devalued bank assets, Kostin pointed out. The Russian banking sector is feeling “quite safe,” the VTB chief executive maintained, adding that he believes there won’t be any problems, “although we incurred certain losses last year when our property was simply taken away from us.” Putin, who has previously named economic sovereignty as the country’s top priority, agreed with Kostin, saying: “Perhaps what you have said about raising the level of independence and sovereignty is rather timely, considering greater negative trends in the US banking system.” The Russian president has earlier stated that the country’s economy was successfully withstanding the outside pressure, warning that Western sanctions will have a boomerang effect.

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Blumenthal
https://twitter.com/i/status/1678783695388286977

 

 

Tucker Tate

 

 

 

 

Support the Automatic Earth in virustime with Paypal, Bitcoin and Patreon.

 

 

 

 

 

May 272023
 


Vincent van Gogh Pollard Willows and Setting Sun 1888

 

Air Defender 23: The Largest Exercise Since The Foundation Of NATO (Helmer)
G7 Members Want The Rest Of The World To Join Their Crusade (Lukyanov)
Lavrov Hails China’s “Balanced Position”, Ukraine Asked To Cede Territory (ZH)
NATO’s ‘Grave Mistake’ Led To Ukraine Conflict – Kissinger (RT)
Russia Protests To US Embassy Over Sullivan’s Crimea Statements (RT)
US Incites European Yes-Men To Poke Russia – Lavrov (TASS)
The EU Has No Leadership, Only NGOs And Think Tanks – Hungarian Minister (RMX)
Anti-China Bloc Tests AI-Powered Drone Swarms (RT)
Trial By Ordeal (Kunstler)
The Green Fraud (Jim Rickards)
IRS Whistleblower Defies the Biden Administration and the Media (Turley)
The DeSantis -Or GOP Generally- Political Question (Denninger)
US Debt A Pyramid Scheme – Russia’s Top MP (RT)
Inside Joe Biden’s Struggles To Create A ‘New Economic World Order’ (Pol.)

 

 

 

 

RFK jr
https://twitter.com/i/status/1662051461352632324

 

 

Kory
https://twitter.com/i/status/1662102658415575041

 

 

 

 

Steal election

 

 

 

 

“There is a grave risk that in three weeks’ time US and NATO forces will attempt direct combat against Russia..”

Air Defender 23: The Largest Exercise Since The Foundation Of NATO (Helmer)

There is a grave risk that in three weeks’ time US and NATO forces will attempt direct combat against Russia. The operational plan is to strike from Romanian airspace in the south and the Baltic states in the north, in camouflage of the NATO exercise called “Air Defender 23”, and under cover of US F-16 fighter aircraft purportedly operated by Ukrainian pilots but fuelled, directed, and guarded by more than two hundred US and NATO aircraft, including the most advanced US air war fighter, the F-35. “This [is] the largest deployment exercise since the foundation of NATO”, according to the cover story published by NATO headquarters. “ Commanded at US bases in Germany, ostensibly led by German officers, a Bundeswehr “fact sheet” claims “100 [US] Air National Guard aircraft from 35 different states will make the leap across the Atlantic to participate in Air Defender 2023.

In addition to the world’s most modern jets, the F35, more than 20 different types of aircraft and Airmen from 24 nations will practice air warfare operations together over Germany, but also over eastern Europe on the NATO border. Among them Eurofighter, F18, F16, A10, [Saab] Gripen jets.” Including the Ukrainian regime in Kiev as one of “our partners in East and South-Eastern Europe”, the German military announcement says “we want to promote collective defense of common values (freedom, democracy, prosperity) – attack on one NATO nation is an attack on responsiveness of airpower – Allied air forces are first responders.” Camouflaging US direction of the combined NATO attack operations from the Ramstein base in Germany, headquarters of the allied air command in Europe, are two parallel operations.

“Two NATO exercises, RAMSTEIN DUST for NATOs Deployable Air Command and Control capability, the DARS, and RAMSTEIN GUARD for Electronic Warfare are linked into our exercise.” In design since the start of the Russian Special Military Operation in February 2022, this plan of US and NATO air operations against Russia follows the defeat of the Ukrainian ground forces at Artemovsk (Bakhmut) and the strategic defeat of the US Patriot missile system at Kiev by the Russian hypersonic Kinzhal missile on May 16. The use of NATO exercises to conceal active attacks on Russian targets was first demonstrated last September when the Nord Stream pipelines were blown up following the BALTOPS naval exercise. More recently, on May 13 a US-directed ambush of Russian aircraft was rehearsed when an Su-34 fighter-bomber, an SU-35 air-defence escort, and two Mi8 helicopters were hit simultaneously and downed in Russian airspace, over Bryansk region.

[..] The post-operational Russian intelligence reports of May 18 and May 20 indicate “a multifunctional radar station, as well as five launchers of the Patriot anti-aircraft missile system manufactured by the United States were hit and completely destroyed.” In the days following, Russian military operations have intensified long-range missile attacks targeting anti-aircraft defence complexes, rail marshalling yards, fuel and ammunition stocks, equipment parks, and reserve assembly areas in the west of the Ukraine, including Khmelnitsky, Rivne, Zhitomir, and Lvov. The scope of targeting goes beyond the Electric War of previous months, a NATO forces veteran comments. “It’s now a full-on campaign. Now that the US/NATO air defence has proven to be useless against Russian strike capabilities, I expect them to take to the sky. It’s all they have left.”

The source agrees with retired US military experts in the alternative media who do not believe that supplying old F-16 aircraft to Kiev adds significant air defence or air attack capability against Russia. The F-16s for the Ukraine are a deception, camouflage for a much deeper NATO attack plan, the source warns. “How about the F-16s being cover for US F-22s or other US aircraft in Romanian or Polish airspace, firing stand- off weapons?”

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The G7 has rapidly become an irrelevant anachronism.

G7 Members Want The Rest Of The World To Join Their Crusade (Lukyanov)

One is reminded of American journalist Thomas Friedman’s international bestseller of the late nineties, ‘The World is Flat’. At the time, he was referring to the coming together of everything and everyone in the context of globalization. But nowadays the metaphor needs altering. Today, the message should be somehow simpler and even flatter, because otherwise there is no way for people to grasp the frightening multidimensionality that abounds. Such an approach is characteristic of contemporary international relations, and from there it spills over into the domestic politics of every country. That said, within states themselves everything is more closely understood, so real world factors are still important. On a global scale, however, the situation is more ambiguous.

The recent G7 summit in Hiroshima was a powerful illustration of the efforts being made to fix, if not cement, this very two-dimensional scheme at the global level. This is perhaps the first time that Russia and China have been given essentially equal status – as adversaries and major threats to the world that the US-led bloc represents. The organizers were very serious about widening their circle of sympathizers – with many of the major states of the non-Western world receiving invitations: India, Brazil, Vietnam and Indonesia. Joining them were the heads of major international organizations. Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky was the main guest, and this was noteworthy. His country’s issue is becoming, as the saying goes, a ‘rallying point’ for a community that considers itself to be ‘on the right side of history.’

Indeed, here is a curious detail: The Japanese press wrote that, after the summit, their Prime Minister Fumio Kishida was considering calling early elections because the success of the event, especially the arrival of the Ukrainian leader, had boosted his party’s ratings. In other words, Zelensky has managed to become a factor in the domestic politics of a country far removed from Ukraine. The need for a strong, personal, unifying motif is clear. In the absence of such elements, these communities tend to disintegrate because the world is not really two-dimensional. It is not only diverse, it is actually fragmented by interests, perceptions and agendas, and it needs maximum flexibility to respond to increasingly diverse challenges. It is very difficult to maintain cohesion without heavy artillery, both figuratively and, unfortunately, literally.

What should those against whom this consolidation is targeted do? Probably the opposite, i.e. they should aim to maximize the diversity of their connections and their options for development, and insist on the right not to make final and irrevocable choices about joining one bloc or the other. The good versus evil dichotomy is understandable and morally appealing, but in most cases irrelevant to the real international process. And the G7’s attempts to draw India, Brazil and others into its orbit on this basis will not be effective.

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China will call the shots…

Lavrov Hails China’s “Balanced Position”, Ukraine Asked To Cede Territory (ZH)

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov hailed China’s “balanced position” on the conflict in Ukraine during a Friday meeting with Chinese special envoy Li Hui in Moscow. China has thus far resisted Western pressure to condemn Moscow, but has instead tried to present a neutral stance while issuing occasional statements condemning NATO expansion and US global dominance. Beijing has also been among a handful of Asian countries to have greatly expanded Russian energy imports since the start of the war. The Chinese envoy on Friday once again called for an immediate ceasefire, at a moment Russian forces are consolidating gains in Donetsk, particularly in Bakhmut where Wagner finally declared victory over the weekend following more than 200 days of fierce fighting.

According to The Wall Street Journal Li Hui conveyed a clear message that: “US allies in Europe should assert their autonomy and urge an immediate ceasefire, leaving Russia in possession of the parts [of Ukraine] …that it now occupies.” China has also sent representatives to Ukraine and Europe, with EU officials conveying their stance that freezing the conflict was not in their interest. The Zelensky government too believes that a ‘freeze’ would only allow the Russians to resupply, regroup, and fortify their positions. Western allies have also been arguing against a freeze. EU officials reportedly told the Chinese envoy that “it’s impossible to split Europe from America” and that Europe remains committed and unified in support of Ukraine.

According to a review of Friday’s meeting between Russian and Chinese representatives: Russia’s Lavrov expressed gratitude for China’s “balanced position” and willingness to play a positive role in a meeting with China’s Ukraine envoy, the foreign ministry said. China’s Li Hui, who spent 10 years as ambassador to Moscow, has been on a tour of European capitals, and last week visited Kyiv. After those talks, China said it wanted to “form the greatest common denominator for resolving the Ukrainian crisis, and make its own efforts to stop the fighting and (establish a) ceasefire and restore peace as soon as possible”. Kyiv has told Li, however, that it would not accept any proposal that involved Ukraine losing territory.

Hawks in both Britain and the United States have urged Ukraine to stay the course, despite mounting troop casualties in the tens of thousands. The UK especially has long been accused of actively thwarting attempts at peace talks which were proposed last year – instead encouraging Ukraine to ‘win’ militarily. President Zelensky has all the while maintained that talks with Moscow are impossible until Russian troops leave every bit of Ukrainian territory.

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But now that is has all those weapons, it must join NATO anyway?! He doesn’t understand the “mistake”.

NATO’s ‘Grave Mistake’ Led To Ukraine Conflict – Kissinger (RT)

Former US secretary of state Henry Kissinger has explained how his views on prospective NATO membership for Ukraine changed between 2008, when the bloc first acknowledged Kiev’s “aspirations” to join, and now when the stream of Western military aid turned its into the “best-armed country” in the region. “I’m in the ironical position that I was alone when I opposed membership, and I’m nearly alone when I advocate NATO membership,” the veteran politician told a Wall Street Journal contributor in an interview recorded days before his 100th birthday. “I think the offer to put Ukraine into NATO was a grave mistake and led to this war,” he explained, yet claimed that the scale of the conflict and “its nature, is a Russian peculiarity, and we were absolutely right to resist it.”

But after Washington and its allies turned Ukraine into the “best-armed country in Europe,” it clearly belongs to the US-led military bloc, the politician stated, reiterating his firm belief that peace in Europe cannot be achieved without Ukraine in NATO. Back in 2008, NATO declared that Kiev would join the bloc, but did not specify a date for that to happen. Russia, which sees the bloc’s eastward expansion as a major security threat, had singled out Kiev’s growing push to join the bloc as among the main reasons for launching its military operation in Ukraine more than a year ago. Kissinger drew the ire of Kiev last year when he suggested that Ukraine should accept a return to the “status quo ante,” or relinquish its territorial claims to Crimea and grant autonomy to the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics, in the name of peace.

In an interview with WSJ he went as far as to claim that from his “perspective, the Ukraine war is won,” but any peace terms are unlikely to include Crimea. “For Russia, the loss of Sevastopol, which was always not Ukrainian in history, would be such a comedown that the cohesion of the state would be in danger. And I think that’s not desirable for the world after Ukraine,” he said. The US-led bloc is already waging a proxy war against Russia, and Kissinger, despite his vast experience, is “totally wrong” to suggest that Ukrainian membership in NATO would somehow guarantee peace, former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev said earlier this month. Medvedev, who currently serves as deputy head of Russia’s Security Council, said that until the “Ukrainian nationalist regime” is dismantled it “won’t give up on attempts to regain lost territories,” and in response Moscow “would have to reply harshly with all available means,” likely triggering NATO’s Article 5.

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95+% of Crimeans voted to join Russia in 2014.

Russia Protests To US Embassy Over Sullivan’s Crimea Statements (RT)

The Russian Foreign Ministry has summoned senior US diplomats and expressed a strong protest in connection with the words of White House National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan about strikes on the territory of Russia, Report informs referring to TASS. On May 21, Sullivan said Washington does not allow Kyiv to use Western weapons to strike at the territory of Russia, noting that he does not consider Crimea to be part of it. “Senior diplomats of the US diplomatic mission in Moscow were summoned to the Russian Foreign Ministry on May 26, a strong protest was expressed about the unacceptable statements of the White House National Security Advisor J. Sullivan, who actually approved the strikes of the armed formations of the regime in Kyiv on Russian territory, including the Republic of Crimea and the Belgorod region,” the statement said.


Washington’s words about strikes on Crimea are hypocritical and false, the ministry said. “The assurances of US officials that the United States does not encourage such attacks on Russia are hypocritical and false, given the direct evidence of the use of weapons and equipment supplied for the needs of the Ukraine military by the Pentagon for the preparation and implementation of terrorist acts by Ukrainian militants,” the ministry said. The ministry noted that the hostile actions of the United States, which has long been a party to the conflict, plunged Russian-US relations into a deep and dangerous crisis, fraught with unpredictable consequences.

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“Washington believes that its self-preservation is ensured by the Atlantic Ocean.”

US Incites European Yes-Men To Poke Russia – Lavrov (TASS)

Washington is unleashing its European satellites to nip at Moscow’s heels, believing it can get away with anything, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said. “For now, Washington is egging its European satellites on [to antagonize] the Russian Federation, thinking they can get away with anything,” he said in an appearance on the “Moscow.Kremlin.Putin” television program, according to an excerpt posted on Friday on journalist Pavel Zarubin’s Telegram channel. According to Lavrov, the US is sorely mistaken in entertaining the deluded belief that its “self-preservation” in any World War III scenario would be ensured by the Atlantic Ocean serving as a buffer zone. “Washington believes that its self-preservation is ensured by the Atlantic Ocean. This also represents a serious fallacy if they [the US] are preparing to bring the world to the very brink of World War III,” the top diplomat pointed out.

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“..Europe is stumbling around the stage of history as a clumsy sideshow, drifting from crisis to crisis..”

The EU Has No Leadership, Only NGOs And Think Tanks – Hungarian Minister (RMX)

No one has the courage and aptitude to lead Europe today, meaning there is no political leadership in the European Union, especially in the European Commission, said Hungarian Justice Minister Judit Varga at a Budapest conference on Thursday. “In the European Union today, it is non-governmental organizations (NGOs), foundations and think tanks that tell Europe how to run Europe, according to the will of their own leaders,” she said. “Recently, for asymmetric reasons, a crisis of confidence has arisen between the EU leadership and the Hungarian government. This is because the Hungarian government, unlike the EU institutions, says what it thinks and does what it says,” she added.

Varga said Europe is stumbling around the stage of history as a clumsy sideshow, drifting from crisis to crisis, and since the migration crisis, it has been trying to make policy in a way that is completely divorced from the real needs of its citizens. She said the institutional system also failed during the Covid crisis and then shot itself in the foot with sanctions against Russia after the outbreak of the Russian-Ukrainian war She warned that immigration is a crisis that still affects Europe and continues to cost the Hungarian budget heavily. “At the same time, by defending Europe, we have to constantly fight the judgments and proceedings of the European Court of Justice,” she said. “Waiting for yet another slap in the face instead of any good deed, that is the fate of Hungary.” Varga noted that during the coronavirus crisis, the EU made deals regarding vaccines, and yet those text messages have never been produced, referring to the murky case involving EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen.

“We make no secret of the fact that we want to hold the functioning of the institutions in the European Union accountable in terms of the rule of law. Let’s talk about whether the European Commission, the European Parliament, the European institutions are respecting the rules, whether the rule of law is working in the institutions,” said the minister. On the issue of the Hungarian EU presidency, the European Parliament has no say in this, the minister said, stressing that more than 10 years ago, a unanimous European Council decision had established the order of the member states, which can only be changed by unanimity. The presidency is not only a right but also an obligation, and the opposition will not achieve anything by such an attempt, but it could do enormous damage. According to the minister, the European Parliament wants to block Hungary’s EU presidency precisely because it fears that Hungary will take stock of the dysfunctional state of EU institutions.

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“..urging the three members to stop “ignoring the concerns of the international community.”

Anti-China Bloc Tests AI-Powered Drone Swarms (RT)

The US, UK and Australia have shown off new AI-powered drone swarms, marking the first-ever collaboration on autonomous UAV technology between the members of the AUKUS security pact, described by officials as a way to counter China. The allies carried out the three-way “capabilities trial” late last month in Wiltshire, Britain, where they achieved the “live collaborative retraining of models in flight and the interchange of AI models between AUKUS nations” for the first time, according to the US military. “The work saw the initial joint deployment of Australian, UK and US AI-enabled assets in a collaborative swarm to detect and track military targets in a representative environment in real time,” the Pentagon said in a statement on Friday.

Formed in 2021 as a way to deter China in the Indo-Pacific region, the AUKUS pact has repeatedly come under fire from Beijing. Under the “Pillar I” of the deal, the United States pledged to furnish nuclear submarine technology to Australia “at the earliest date possible.” Hosted by the UK’s Defence Science and Technology Laboratory, the drone tests were conducted as part of “Pillar II” of the AUKUS partnership, which calls to “develop and provide joint advanced military capabilities” between the three allies in order to “promote security and stability in the Indo-Pacific region.” The Chinese Foreign Ministry insists that the new military initiatives will only “motivate an arms race, damage the international nuclear nonproliferation regime and harm regional stability and peace,” urging the three members to stop “ignoring the concerns of the international community.”

While officials have not offered extensive details about the UAV trials, the British military said they involved “more than 70 military and civilian defense personnel and industry contractors,” who tested swarms of Blue Bear Ghost and Boeing/Insitu CT220 drones. UK forces provided several tanks and armored vehicles for the demo, while private contractors supplied a number of self-propelled howitzers and Soviet-era BMP vehicles produced in the former Czechoslovakia. The gear was used to test the drones’ ability to track military targets on the battlefield.

“This trial demonstrates the military advantage of AUKUS advanced capabilities, as we work in coalition to identify, track and counter potential adversaries from a greater distance and with greater speed,” British Lt. Gen. Rob Magowan, a senior Defence Ministry official, said in a statement. The Australian military stated that the tests “achieved several world firsts,” including the live retraining of the drone swarms in flight. Russia also sees the West’s expansion of its military presence in Asia as a risk that could lead to prolonged conflict. “I cannot imagine the great Asian civilizations toeing the line the way the EU unfortunately did, and obediently delivering Washington’s agenda,” Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said in March.

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“..we are living in a very badly-ordered society these days, a society in which anything goes and nothing matters, which is a poor principle for civilization.”

Trial By Ordeal (Kunstler)

Would it surprise you to learn that children well beneath the age of puberty are not inclined to think about sex at all? In a well-ordered society that recognizes children as different from adults, they don’t. And if something sexual comes to their attention, they are generally perplexed by it. Unless they’re born into an era when adults are busy erasing boundaries, guard-rails, and cultural inhibitions, in which case I must imagine that young children exposed to, say, pornography in a chaotic household find it traumatically sinister. So, why the gleeful celebration about sexualizing children now? I’ll tell you why: because we are living in a very badly-ordered society these days, a society in which anything goes and nothing matters, which is a poor principle for civilization.

It’s the same principle that has people shitting all over the sidewalks of San Francisco, looting Walgreens stores in broad daylight, pushing ineffective and unsafe vaccines (and lying about it), and arresting people for thought crimes. It’s a degenerate society. Morally bankrupt. Wicked. You might ask, how did it get that way? The concise answer is that a broken business model for daily life and a collapsing economy have so disordered millions of minds that values are seen as having no value. The scaffold for truth, beauty, honor, dignity, courage, prudence, generosity, etc., folded some time ago, in slow-motion, so we didn’t notice. The keepers of our culture have replaced it with a tacky system of ritual virtue-signaling fakery that they don’t really believe in, that persists simply because the moral vacuum it stands for provokes such unbearable anxiety.

The main lesson of the recent Durham Report — missed by even the most punctilious observers — is that our country does not want to fix itself, indeed the whole broken apparatus of fixing it is in the hands of the people who broke it. This epic negligence leaves the doors wide open for the broad range of lower-order criminal mischief we’re seeing expressed all around us. Now I will venture into shadowland. There is a rumor floating around the Internet that this seemingly coordinated campaign to sexualize children and initiate them into marginal behaviors was started to soften up the public for forthcoming shocking revelations contained in the much-whispered-about Jeffrey Epstein archive of videos that show eminent international figures caught in compromising sexual situations that include sexual acts with children.

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“What is new is that the climate crowd now has the political power they need to push their agenda using fear and the regulatory state..”

The Green Fraud (Jim Rickards)

Those yelling the loudest about climate change want to destroy the oil and natural gas industry, destroy nuclear power plant construction, shut down coal-fired plants, end coal mining, mandate electric vehicles (EVs) on very short deadlines and eliminate gas stoves in your kitchen, fireplaces and even outdoor barbecues. They also want to build wind turbine arrays offshore and on deserts, plains and even mountains near you. They want to install solar module fields on every rooftop and open space near a population center. The climate change radicals want to increase the mining of lithium, nickel, cobalt, copper, rare earths and other dangerous chemicals to feed their obsession with EV batteries. They’re spending hundreds of billions of tax dollars to subsidize the EVs, battery manufacturing and a coast-to-coast network of charging stations to keep the EVs moving (even if they do have to stop for a charge every 180 miles).

The greenies also want to mandate “15-minute cities” where you can walk everywhere in town within 15 minutes, which means you won’t need your car to visit a doctor, dry cleaner, grocery store, pharmacy or any of the other locations we routinely visit for errands and necessities. That may sound attractive if you chose it voluntarily. That’s not what the greenies have in mind. They want 15-minute cities as a Trojan horse to eliminate automobiles entirely and force you to ride bicycles or use public transportation. In the end, you’ll need a permit to fly to another city. The permits will be rationed and you’ll have to put yourself on a waiting list until your turn. You can pay for your ticket with the new central bank digital currency (CBDC), assuming your social credit score is high enough and you didn’t vote for the wrong candidate in the last election.


In short, the climate change agenda is not about climate change. It’s about total political and economic control of the population. So-called climate change is an elite scare tactic to get you to fall into line and obey government orders (as most people do). Elites claim that if we don’t radically reduce CO2 (carbon dioxide) and CH4 (methane) emissions, global warming will melt the ice caps, raise sea levels, put island nations underwater and flood the New York City subway system in 10 years or less. They’ve been making similar claims for 40 years and they’ve been wrong every time. That doesn’t stop them. Fear works. What is new is that the climate crowd now has the political power they need to push their agenda using fear and the regulatory state to attack your means of transportation, your personal conveniences and your consumer choices.

Rickards

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“I don’t want to do any of this.”

IRS Whistleblower Defies the Biden Administration and the Media (Turley)

“I don’t want to do any of this.” Those words from 14-year IRS veteran Gary Shapley may be the most important line in his CBS News interview this week. After weeks of Democrats dismissing whistleblowers alleging the president’s administration interfered with investigations of Hunter Biden, Shapley had enough. Putting his career and much of his life at risk, Shapley came forward to say he and others believe Hunter is being protected and identified the Justice Department as the source of the protection. Shapley has every reason not to want to do any of this. After all, as President Joe Biden stated last year, “No one f–ks with a Biden.” For years, a Democrat-controlled Congress refused to investigate Biden family influence-peddling, and the press dismissed people raising Hunter’s laptop as spreading “Russian disinformation.”

The media have worked hard to minimize the blowback after acknowledging the laptop’s authenticity and the growing evidence of millions in influence-peddling. Part of this effort at “scandal implosion” has been to dismiss any criminal charges as relatively minor tax violations unconnected to the president. Indeed, when the president recently agreed to a rare sit-down interview, the White House chose MSNBC’s Stephanie Ruhle. Before asking about his son Hunter’s scandal, Ruhle emphasized it was “something personal” with “no ties to you.” Many of us guffawed at the claim given multiple references on the laptop to President Biden, including possibly sharing in the proceeds from influence-peddling with foreign governments.

The problem is Shapley suggests some uncomfortable questions on how Biden’s administration may have worked to minimize charges against his son and, according to Shapley, “slow-walked” the investigation. His interview explains why the Justice Department can indict figures like Rep. George Santos (R-NY) on a variety of fraud and money-laundering charges in a few months while spending years investigating Hunter Biden with no conclusion. Shapley made clear he had never seen this level of interference in his long service at the IRS and said it was done “at the direction of the Department of Justice.” And he said the interference began as soon as he “took control of this particular investigation”: “I immediately saw deviations from the normal process. It was way outside the norm of what I’ve experienced in the past.”

Navy Seal

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“Nobody would tolerate the price of gasoline varying by 10:1 based on which company you bought auto insurance from. Yet this sort of nonsense is bog-standard through the medical industry.”

The DeSantis -Or GOP Generally- Political Question (Denninger)

Is it not reasonable to expect that manufacturers are legally responsible for the integrity of their products? If, after discovering that a flaw or risk exists they continue trials, sweep said evidence under the rug or otherwise obfuscate what’s going on a courtroom is accessible to those allegedly harmed in which such evidence can be heard and a determination made? How about the rank price-fixing? What has DeSantis done in Florida about it? I can tell you what he did during the time I lived there: Nothing. In fact there are medical centers in NW FL in particular that feast on such disparities and have been known to be doing it for a very long time. In fact Florida has long been the capital of this sort of abuse and you have paid for it if you live in the state, directly and indirectly, particularly when inmates in a jail require care and thus you get the bill in your property taxes.

Can this be fixed at the state level with legislation or even just executive action? You bet; States are the exclusive issuers of both business and medical licenses. Any state can condition said licensing on non-discriminatory pricing irrespective of the method of payment. You expect this at WalMart, the grocery store and gas station. Nobody would tolerate the price of gasoline varying by 10:1 based on which company you bought auto insurance from. Yet this sort of nonsense is bog-standard through the medical industry. Where is the candidate who will put a stop to it and, if they’re a governor, can demonstrate they’re serious because they did put a stop to it? In addition the executive, which is the Governor’s department controls the prosecuting apparatus. DeSantis could have directed his prosecutors to go after medical providers for violations of the State anti-trust laws, which absolutely do exist in each state and which are available under existing law — no new legislation required. He, like the rest, actively refused.

DeSantis is NOT a governor who did either of these things. Folks if we are going to fix what’s wrong with this nation it starts with the medical system. If we don’t force one of the political parties to do it neither will because there are billions of reasons for them not to spread around the politicians in both parties. This has to stop because CMS, Medicare and Medicaid services, consumed one third of all dollars spent federally last year — $2 trillion of the $6 trillion total — and is in fact responsible for the entire trillion dollar deficit. That’s right — if it was stopped (that is, it spent only what it took in via taxes by stopping the screwing medical system-wide) the federal government would in fact run a modest surplus and the inflation you are having happen right now would not be happening.

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“The US public debt is a global financial pyramid, built by Washington to defraud other nations..”

US Debt A Pyramid Scheme – Russia’s Top MP (RT)

Senior Russian lawmaker Vyacheslav Volodin has branded the US federal government debt a global pyramid scheme that is heading for an inevitable collapse. The comments come as Washington struggles to agree on raising its debt ceiling to avoid a default. “Just think about it, in 2023 interest payments on the US debt could reach $1.5 trillion – almost a third of all US budget revenue!”Volodin, who serves as chairman of Russia’s lower house of parliament, said in a Telegram post on Friday. “The US public debt is a global financial pyramid, built by Washington to defraud other nations,” the State Duma member wrote. “History has shown that all pyramid schemes eventually fail,”he added, warning that the dollar is becoming toxic. Countries dependent on the US dollar should start looking for alternatives such as national currencies, to reduce risks for their citizens, Volodin concluded.


The US government faces a default on its $31 trillion in debt if lawmakers fail to raise the federal borrowing limit. US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen warned Congress earlier this week that bills can’t be paid if the debt ceiling is not raised by June 1. Reuters reported on Thursday that President Joe Biden and top Republican lawmaker Kevin McCarthy were edging close to a deal on the debt ceiling but have yet to agree on cuts to discretionary spending, which powers a wide range of military and domestic programs. Russia started settling trade deals with its partners in national currencies after the US effectively cut it off from dollar-denominated trade as part of sanctions arising from Moscow’s military operation in Ukraine. Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin said on Wednesday that the ruble and the yuan are now dominating trade between Russia and China, and are used in 70% of mutual payments.

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A/ Joe Biden creates nothing.

B/ The US sees itself in the center of this ‘New Economic World Order’. It won’t be.

Inside Joe Biden’s Struggles To Create A ‘New Economic World Order’ (Pol.)

The Biden administration has been trying to bury the free-trade era for months. U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai drove a nail into its coffin in January, telling the world’s one percent at Davos that the Biden administration would try to shape a “new economic world order” around protecting workers. And National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan sought to deliver last rites in April, promising the White House would forge a “new Washington consensus” to replace the one that had governed the globe for over a generation. “I remain convinced that through all of this disruption we’re moving towards a new economic order,” Tai told POLITICO in an interview. “I’d really like to fill that gap with a positive vision that we will be prepared for it.”

The goal is to replace the old paradigms of globalization — free trade and a reliance on markets — with a “worker-centered” trade policy that raises wages not just for Americans, but around the world. But building a new world economy is proving more difficult than eulogizing the old one. While the pro-globalization consensus has shown cracks for years — from the financial crisis to the election of former President Donald Trump — Biden’s team has struggled to outline how it will shape new rules and institutions to replace those that governed the world for the last half-century. Biden’s team is moving slowly to transform a paralyzed World Trade Organization, once the premier facilitator of globalization, into a new-look economic club that reflects its progressive values.

As those efforts crawl along, Biden has sought to forge new economic partnerships in Asia and Latin America, but the nascent efforts pale in comparison to China’s trillion-dollar infrastructure program for developing nations and risk replicating the corporate-friendly trade policies of the old system. Meanwhile, Biden’s quest to counter China’s technological growth risks sparking a new Cold War and dividing the world into two or more global trading blocs — a fate the White House insists it is trying to avoid. More fundamentally, Biden’s brain trust has yet to settle on a vision for how the next era of global economics will be constructed. Their initial ideas are abstract at best.

[..] Biden’s critics — from centrist free-trade holdouts to Trump-fueled populists who focus on competition with China — are hardly more concrete in their own ideas. Across the political spectrum, American policymakers are grappling with how to shape a new global economic system to replace the one they built decades ago. “I don’t know if the administration has clearly outlined what that new world looks like,” Sen. Marco Rubio , the top Republican on the Intelligence Committee, told POLITICO after a Capitol Hill hearing in February when he assailed the old, pro-globalization paradigm. “But I don’t know if anybody else has either.”

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Jimmy Dore Bitcoin
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Sunfish

 

 

Cobra mantis
https://twitter.com/i/status/1662149543926939668

 

 

Flying fox
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WTF

 

 

 

 

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May 192023
 


John Falter The Windy City 1946

 

The US Should Be a Force for Peace in the World (EMN)
Ukraine Has ‘Five Months Left’ To Impress US – FT (RT)
US Wants To ‘Freeze’ Ukraine Conflict – Politico (RT)
Kiev Pilots Not Allowed To Train On EU F-16s Amid US Skepticism – NYT (TASS)
Putin Warned Patriot Air Defences Wouldn’t Survive Long in Ukraine (MWM)
Zelensky Asks G7 For Peace Summit Without Russia – FT (RT)
US Not Ready For Practical Steps On Peace Settlement In Ukraine – Lavrov (TASS)
Chinese Special Envoy Meets With Zelensky (RT)
Kissinger Changes His Mind On Ukraine Joining NATO (RT)
Ensuring Regional Security Not Feasible Via NATO Expansion – China (TASS)
Congress Could Have the Final Say on the Russian Collusion Scandal
It’s Over Folks (Denninger)
FBI Concerned Jan. 6 Footage Would Expose Undercover Agents, Informants (ET)
Justice Neil Gorsuch Speaks Out Against Lockdowns and Mandates (BI)
Rand Paul: Elon Musk Will Go Down As A Historic Champion For Free Speech (SM)

 

 

 

 

RFK

 

 

Macgregor Trump jr
https://twitter.com/i/status/1659105972923637761

 

 

Contact us
https://twitter.com/i/status/1659094491477823488

 

 

Lest We Forget: Obama and Biden sat in that August 3, 2016 Situation Room briefing and said, yeah, let’s let the highest officials in our administration fabricate evidence to frame the opposing party candidate Donald Trump.

 

 

 

 

The following is the text of a full-page ad by the Eisenhower Media Network in the New York Times on May 16, 2023.

The US Should Be a Force for Peace in the World (EMN)

sThe Russia-Ukraine War has been an unmitigated disaster. Hundreds of thousands have been killed or wounded. Millions have been displaced. Environmental and economic destruction have been incalculable. Future devastation could be exponentially greater as nuclear powers creep ever closer toward open war. We deplore the violence, war crimes, indiscriminate missile strikes, terrorism, and other atrocities that are part of this war. The solution to this shocking violence is not more weapons or more war, with their guarantee of further death and destruction. As Americans and national security experts, we urge President Biden and Congress to use their full power to end the Russia-Ukraine War speedily through diplomacy, especially given the grave dangers of military escalation that could spiral out of control.

Sixty years ago, President John F. Kennedy made an observation that is crucial for our survival today. “Above all, while defending our own vital interests, nuclear powers must avert those confrontations which bring an adversary to a choice of either a humiliating retreat or a nuclear war. To adopt that kind of course in the nuclear age would be evidence only of the bankruptcy of our policy–or of a collective death-wish for the world.” The immediate cause of this disastrous war in Ukraine is Russia’s invasion. Yet the plans and actions to expand NATO to Russia’s borders served to provoke Russian fears. And Russian leaders made this point for 30 years. A failure of diplomacy led to war. Now diplomacy is urgently needed to end the Russia-Ukraine War before it destroys Ukraine and endangers humanity.

Russia’s current geopolitical anxiety is informed by memories of invasion from Charles XII, Napoleon, the Kaiser and Hitler. U.S. troops were among an Allied invasion force that intervened unsuccessfully against the winning side in Russia’s post-World War I civil war. Russia sees NATO enlargement and presence on its borders as a direct threat; the U.S. and NATO see only prudent preparedness. In diplomacy, one must attempt to see with strategic empathy, seeking to understand one’s adversaries. This is not weakness: it is wisdom. We reject the idea that diplomats, seeking peace, must choose sides, in this case either Russia or Ukraine. In favoring diplomacy we choose the side of sanity. Of humanity. Of peace.

We consider President Biden’s promise to back Ukraine “as long as it takes” to be a license to pursue ill-defined and ultimately unachievable goals. It could prove as catastrophic as President Putin’s decision last year to launch his criminal invasion and occupation. We cannot and will not endorse the strategy of fighting Russia to the last Ukrainian. We advocate for a meaningful and genuine commitment to diplomacy, specifically an immediate ceasefire and negotiations without any disqualifying or prohibitive preconditions. Deliberate provocations delivered the Russia-Ukraine War. In the same manner, deliberate diplomacy can end it.

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“If we get to September and Ukraine has not made significant gains, then the international pressure on [the West] to bring them to negotiations will be enormous..”

The US will blame Zelensky for the failure, and wash its own hands.

Ukraine Has ‘Five Months Left’ To Impress US – FT (RT)

Ukraine needs to demonstrate some “advances” over the next five months as the US would consider these crucial to the future of the conflict between Moscow and Kiev, Financial Times reported on Thursday, citing several European and American officials. Washington has to show that the massive military support the US and its allies have been providing to Ukraine has not been in vain, the paper also said. “It is important for America to sell this war as a successful one, as well as for domestic purposes to prove that all of those aid packages have been successful in terms of Ukrainian advances,” a European official told the FT.

The polls show that public support for Ukraine is waning in the US, and President Biden’s administration has to show that the tens of billions of dollars it spent on assistance for Kiev made a major difference on the frontlines, the media outlet said. According to FT sources, Washington believes the next five months are critical to the outcome of the conflict. “If we get to September and Ukraine has not made significant gains, then the international pressure on [the West] to bring them to negotiations will be enormous,” another source told the FT, on condition of anonymity. September will see the UN General Assembly and G20 leaders’ summit take place one after another. Both events could be used to make the warring parties sit down at a negotiating table, FT said.

The Western military support for Kiev is also about to reach its limits, the sources warned. “The message [to Kiev] is basically that this is the best you’re going to get,” a European official told the paper. “There’s no more flexibility in the US budget to keep writing checks, and European arms factories are running at full capacity.” The US continues to be Ukraine’s biggest backer when it comes to arms supplies. Washington’s allies are concerned about its capacity to keep up the same level of support and expect it to go down in 2024 and a US presidential election. “We can’t keep the same level of assistance forever,” a European official said, adding that the current level of support might be sustained for a year or two but no longer.

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It takes two -or more- sides to freeze a conflict.

US Wants To ‘Freeze’ Ukraine Conflict – Politico (RT)

The administration of US President Joe Biden is reportedly considering ‘freezing’ the conflict in Ukraine for the foreseeable future instead of pushing for the country’s victory, according to sources cited by Politico on Thursday. Three serving and one former US official told the outlet that a long-term low-intensity stand-off was currently being discussed in the White House. The former official compared the possible scenario to how the Korean War of the early 1950s ended in an armistice. There was no formal peace agreement, and both Pyongyang and Seoul claim sovereignty over the entire Korean Peninsula, with a demilitarized zone separating the two parts. “A Korea-style stoppage is certainly something that’s been discussed by experts and analysts in and out of government,” the source said.

“It’s plausible, because neither side would need to recognize any new borders and the only thing that would have to be agreed is to stop shooting along a set line.” The benefits for the US would be that a frozen conflict would be less costly for Western nations and draw less public attention, and consequently less pressure to assist Kiev, the outlet explained. Ukraine would still be allied with Washington and continue switching its military to NATO standards, as it seeks to join the bloc someday. The ‘Korean scenario’ for Ukraine drew media attention in January, after Aleksey Danilov, the secretary of the country’s national security council, claimed in an interview that Moscow had sent a top official to European capitals to promote it.

The Kremlin denied that and claimed Danilov may have mistaken a Ukrainian politician surnamed Kazak for his namesake in the Russian government, whom he identified as the messenger. Dmitry Medvedev, the deputy chair of the Russian Security Council, argued that Danilov’s words were meant for “domestic consumption,” so that the Ukrainian government could measure the public reaction to it. The Russian official mused that “being split is the best-case scenario,” for Kiev, under the circumstances. Moscow called NATO’s expansion in Europe and its creeping takeover of Ukraine without its formal accession as one of the key reasons for sending troops against its neighbor. The conflict, Russia has maintained, is part of a US proxy war against it, in which Ukrainians serve as cannon fodder.

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“..Kiev will need approvals from the United States where the fighters were made..”

Kiev Pilots Not Allowed To Train On EU F-16s Amid US Skepticism – NYT (TASS)

Ukrainian pilots are not allowed to train on F-16 fighter jets owned by European countries, as Washington remains unconvinced that Kiev needs the expensive aircraft, the New York Times reported on Wednesday, citing a senior Ukrainian official. Despite the fact that some European countries have signaled that they are ready to send F-16s to Ukraine, authorities in Kiev will need approvals from the United States where the fighters were made. Without American consent, the training is likely to be limited to technical lessons and technical language only, the newspaper said. The Biden administration is unconvinced that Ukraine needs the expensive jets. Besides, the United States does not want its highly restricted systems to be duplicated or fall into enemy hands.


US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan said on Wednesday that he had no update on F-16s. Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said on May 9 that his country is discussing the possibility of sending F-16 fighters to Ukraine with Great Britain, Denmark and “some other countries in Europe” and the United States. “An intensive dialogue” is underway, Rutte said. Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmitry Kuleba earlier said that some European allies had started work on the issue of sending US F-16 fighters to Kiev. However, there has been scarce comment on the plan in the West, while Ukraine itself admits that the process may not start any time soon. Meanwhile, the office of British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak earlier announced a new military support program to train Ukrainian pilots on Western warplanes.

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“..We will crack the Patriot [like a nut] too, and something will need to be installed in its place, new systems need to be developed – this is a complex and lengthy process..”

Putin Warned Patriot Air Defences Wouldn’t Survive Long in Ukraine (MWM)

On May 16 as part of a complex series of strikes on the Ukrainian capital Kiev the Russian Air Force employed the Kh-47M2 Kinzhal hypersonic ballistic missile to neutralise a unit from an American Patriot air defence system, destroying its a radar and a control centre and reportedly at least one of its launchers. According to Russian sources, the Ukrainian crew operating the Patriot were aware a strike was incoming, but had only a limited warning time due to the Kinzhal missile’s very high speed – limiting opportunities for the missile system to change position or reload. The Patriot system targeted was one of two delivered, with Germany and the United States having each supplied a single unit.

The unit reportedly fired 32 surface to air missiles at the Kinzhal on approach, which at approximately $3 million each amounted to a $96 million barrage to attempt to destroy a missile with an estimated cost of under $2 million. The very high cost and limited number of the Patriot’s interceptors was a key argument for not sending the systems to Ukraine, with their effectiveness also having been brought to question not only due to the system’s highly troubled combat record, but also to the advanced capabilities of new Russian missiles such as the Kinzhal, Iskander and Zicron. These are considered nearly impossible to intercept particularly in their terminal stages. The delivery of Patriots was nevertheless seen as necessary due to the near collapse of Ukrainian air defences, as warnings have been given with growing frequency by both Western and Ukrainian sources that the arsenal of S-300 and BuK missile systems protecting the country has become critically depleted.

Destruction of the Patriot systems comes less than a month after the first systems were delivered in April, and follows a warning in December from Russian President Vladimir Putin that the destruction of the systems was an absolute certainty should they be deployed in Ukraine. He assured that with Washington “now saying that they can put a Patriot [in Ukraine]. Okay, let them do it. We will crack the Patriot [like a nut] too, and something will need to be installed in its place, new systems need to be developed – this is a complex and lengthy process” – indicating that NATO had no newer generations of long range air defence systems available to replace the Patriot once its vulnerability was demonstrated.

Macgregor

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“..this proposal calls for Russia to withdraw its forces from all territories within Ukraine’s 1991 borders, to pay reparations, and to submit to war-crime tribunals.”

Zelensky Asks G7 For Peace Summit Without Russia – FT (RT)

President Vladimir Zelensky has asked the G7 to consider holding a summit on the peaceful settlement of the conflict in Ukraine without the participation of Russia, an EU official has told the Financial Times. The leaders of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK, the US and the EU will discuss the possibility of staging such an event this summer during a three-day Group of Seven meeting, which kicks off in Hiroshima on Friday, the outlet reported on Thursday. According to the official, the discussions at the high-profile meeting in Japan will focus on the ten-point peace plan that Zelensky has been promoting in recent months. Among other things, this proposal calls for Russia to withdraw its forces from all territories within Ukraine’s 1991 borders, to pay reparations, and to submit to war-crime tribunals.

Moscow has rejected the plan as “unacceptable,” pointing out that it ignores the reality on the ground and is actually a sign of Kiev’s unwillingness to resolve the crisis through talks. Zelensky’s spokesperson has confirmed to the FT that Kiev asked the G7 to consider the ten-point plan as Kiev is trying to get as many nations as possible to support the proposal. The Ukrainian leader himself is expected to address the summit in Hiroshima via video link. Ukraine is also interested in “China being involved in the implementation of the Ukrainian peace formula,” said Andrey Yermak, Zelensky’s chief of staff, as quoted by the paper. On Thursday, Zelensky and other Ukrainian officials, including Yermak, held a meeting in Kiev with China’s newly appointed special envoy for Eurasian affairs, Li Hui. According to the Chinese Foreign Ministry, Li told the Ukrainians that Beijing is eager to serve as a peace broker to help reach a political resolution between Kiev and Moscow, based on the principles outlined in a 12-point roadmap published by China in late February.

Beijing’s plan, which calls for early talks between Russia and Ukraine without preconditions, got a positive reception in Moscow, which said it’s ready to discuss it further. However, the West reacted negatively, with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg claiming that Beijing lacked “credibility” as a mediator, having refused to condemn Moscow’s military operation. EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell described the Chinese roadmap as merely “a set of wishful considerations.” On Wednesday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said Moscow remains prepared to listen to peace proposals “based on a genuine wish to contribute to the stabilization of the world order,” including those recently made by Brazil and the African nations.

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“..the US was ready to support any initiative for a peaceful settlement in Ukraine once it was first supported by Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky..”

US Not Ready For Practical Steps On Peace Settlement In Ukraine – Lavrov (TASS)

The US is not ready either at this stage or in the foreseeable future for any kind of constructive action with regard to the settlement in Ukraine, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told a news conference on Thursday following talks with Ugandan counterpart Jeje Odongo. “The United States is not ready either at this stage or, in my opinion, in the foreseeable future, for any constructive action regarding the settlement of the situation in Ukraine, which they themselves created the conditions for over many years,” he said. According to Lavrov, the United States created the situation in Ukraine “by way of its strategic course to oppose the objective formation of a multipolar world, to maintain its hegemony, and subjugate anyone and everyone to its will.”


“Ukraine is used as an obedient instrument within the framework of this course,” the foreign minister stressed. South African President Cyril Ramaphosa said on May 16 that Russian and Ukrainian authorities had agreed to receive an African delegation to seek a peaceful resolution to the conflict. Ramaphosa spoke on behalf of six African nations: Egypt, Zambia, the Republic of Congo, Senegal, Uganda and South Africa. When asked to comment on the South African initiative, White House National Security Council Coordinator for Strategic Communications John Kirby said that the US was ready to support any initiative for a peaceful settlement in Ukraine once it was first supported by Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky.

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China imposes itself step by step. Next step: Xi sends his special envoy. While “NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg claimed that China lacked “credibility”..” That won’t fly anymore.

Chinese Special Envoy Meets With Zelensky (RT)

Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky has met with China’s newly appointed special envoy for Eurasian affairs, Li Hui, who traveled to Kiev to convey Beijing’s views on a diplomatic resolution to Ukraine’s conflict with Russia. According to a statement published on Thursday by the Chinese Foreign Ministry, Li held talks with Zelensky as well as the head of the Ukrainian President’s Office, Andrey Yermak, Foreign Minister Dmitry Kuleba, and representatives from several other ministries. Beijing said both sides had agreed that the recent phone call between Chinese President Xi Jinping and Zelensky had outlined the direction for future relations between their two nations, which it stated should be built on mutual respect and sincerity.

During his trip, Li reiterated that Beijing is willing to serve as a peace broker to help reach a political resolution to the conflict with Russia, based on the principles outlined in a 12-point roadmap published by China in late February. “There is no panacea in resolving the crisis. All parties need to start from themselves, accumulate mutual trust, and create conditions for ending the war and engaging in peace talks,” Li said, according to the Chinese Foreign Ministry’s statement. The special envoy’s two-day trip to Ukraine is the first leg of a wider European tour, during which he is expected to visit Poland, France, Germany, and Russia. Beijing has explained that the trip aims to promote communication toward “a political settlement of the Ukraine crisis.”

China’s peace efforts have been welcomed by Russia as well as some European nations such as Hungary, and have been praised for acknowledging the national interests of both parties. The roadmap, however, has been criticized by some in the West. NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg claimed that China lacked “credibility” as it has refused to condemn Russia’s actions in Ukraine. EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell insisted that “the only thing that can be called a peace plan is Zelensky’s proposal.” The Ukrainian president has demanded that Russia must withdraw from territories that Kiev claims as its own, as well as pay war reparations and face an international tribunal. The Kremlin has dismissed the initiative, claiming it does not take into consideration “the realities on the ground,” including the new status of four former Ukrainian regions as part of Russia.

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Medvedev: “Henry Kissinger called for Ukraine to join NATO.

True, he will celebrate his 100th birthday in 10 days, and he also met with Brezhnev. However, he is completely wrong here. He called the conflict between the United States and China the main threat to humanity. I have always believed that it is important to consider direct and obvious threats, not hypothetical ones, to correctly assess the situation. Imagine that Ukraine is admitted to the North Atlantic Alliance by the current dull-witted leaders:
1) NATO is already waging a hybrid war against Russia;
2) the Ukrainian nationalist regime will not stop trying to regain the lost territories;
3) we will have to respond harshly to this with all possible means, and…
4) here is Article 5 of the Washington Treaty.
Subtle arguments about preventing existential threats do not work during bloody conflicts. This should be clear even to those who are approaching their centenary. Best wishes on the upcoming centenary! Keep the clarity of mind that Sleepy Joe has lost.”

Kissinger Changes His Mind On Ukraine Joining NATO (RT)

Former US secretary of state Henry Kissinger has signalled a U-turn in his views on Ukraine’s prospective NATO membership. The veteran politician told The Economist that he now believes peace in Europe cannot be achieved without Ukraine joining the US-led military bloc. Last fall, Kissinger insisted that “it was not a wise American policy to attempt to include Ukraine into NATO.” He said the bloc’s eastward expansion since the fall of Soviet Union in 1991 had essentially removed Russia’s historic “safety belt,” but insisted that was no justification for Russia’s “surprise attack” on Ukraine. However, in his interview on Wednesday with the British outlet, the politician, who turns 100 on May 27, suggested that “for the safety of Europe, it is better to have Ukraine in NATO.”

He acknowledged that he currently finds himself “in the weird position that people say, ‘Look at him, he’s changed his mind. Now he’s for membership of Ukraine in NATO.’” The reason for such shift is “twofold,” Kissinger said. “One, Russia is no longer the conventional threat it used to be. And, secondly, we have now armed Ukraine to a point where it will be the best-armed, most modern country and with the least experienced leadership in Europe,” he explained. According to the former US Secretary of State, the position taken by European countries towards Kiev’s membership is “madly dangerous.” “The Europeans are saying we don’t want them in NATO because they’re too risky and therefore we’ll arm the hell out of them and give them the most advanced weapons. How can that possibly work?” he asked.

Back in 2008, NATO declared that Kiev would join the bloc, but did not specify a date for that to happen. “The decision to leave open the membership of Ukraine in NATO was very wrong, and unwise,” Kissinger said. The possibility of Ukraine, which the Russians consider “the little brother closest to them organically, or historically,” being accepted into the US-led alliance became “a final turning point” for Russia’s President Vladimir Putin when he decided to send troops to the neighboring country in February 2022, he explained.

Last month, German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius suggested that “this is not the time to decide” about Ukraine’s place in NATO. He was backed by Lithuania’s President Gitanas Nauseda, who said it “would be too difficult” to make Kiev a member of the bloc while the conflict with Moscow continues. Russia, which sees NATO’s eastward expansion as a major security threat, had singled out Kiev’s push to join the bloc as among the main reasons for launching its military operation in Ukraine more than a year ago.

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“..he would prefer to avoid a situation wherein Ukraine became a non-aligned neutral state.”

Ensuring Regional Security Not Feasible Via NATO Expansion – China (TASS)

It is impossible to ensure European security by expanding military blocs, Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Wang Wenbin said at a briefing on Thursday. “It is impossible to ensure regional security by means of strengthening and expanding military blocs. One country’s security should not be ensured at the expense of the security of others,”he said in response to a TASS request to comment on published remarks by Henry Kissinger, former US Secretary of State (1973-1977) and National Security Advisor to two presidents (1969-1975), about Ukraine’s potential accession to NATO. China expects all parties to the conflict to adhere to a common, comprehensive and sustainable security concept, Wang added. According to the senior diplomat, this could be achieved through dialogue and consultations based on respect for the legitimate security interests of all parties.

On May 17, The Economist magazine published an interview with Kissinger, who will turn 100 years old on May 27. In the interview, the doyen of US diplomacy and veteran practitioner of geopolitics said that Ukraine should become a member state of NATO. According to him, Ukraine’s accession to the North Atlantic Alliance would be in the interests of both Kiev and Moscow, and would serve as a guarantee against any future attempts by the Ukrainian leadership to resolve territorial disputes by military means. Kissinger acknowledged that he had changed his point of view about Ukraine’s potential membership in NATO, saying he would prefer to avoid a situation wherein Ukraine became a non-aligned neutral state.

On May 15, the Washington Post reported, quoting sources, that the NATO countries had decided not to send Ukraine an invitation to become a member of the alliance at its upcoming summit in the Lithuanian capital of Vilnius, but are discussing the possibility of stepping up cooperation with Kiev and potentially establishing a timeframe for its entry into the military bloc. According to the authoritative US publication, a consensus exists among the alliance’s members that, in spite of Kiev’s fervent pleas, NATO will not be extending an official invitation to Ukraine to join the bloc during the Vilnius summit on July 11-12.

NATO adopted a political declaration at the Bucharest summit in April 2008 that Ukraine would eventually become a NATO member, but declined to provide a Membership Action Plan (MAP), the first step in a prospective member country’s legal procedure for joining the organization. In February 2019, the Verkhovna Rada (Ukrainian parliament) approved amendments to Ukraine’s constitution enshrining its NATO aspirations into law. Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky has repeatedly stated that Kiev was seeking to obtain an understanding of a specific date by which Ukraine could expect to join the alliance.

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“..If history is any measure, nothing concentrates the mind as much as a subpoena and immunity grant..”

Congress Could Have the Final Say on the Russian Collusion Scandal

[..] figures from Steele to Comey could be compelled to give full accounts in light of this Report. Congress has an interest in hearing from these witnesses as it explores how to make real reforms at the Justice Department and the FBI. The need for congressional action was made clear by the FBI itself in its immediate response to the Report. It insisted that it has reformed itself after what it described as “missteps identified in the report.” There are many ways to describe an investigation into false allegations raised by an opposing political party to derail a presidency. Calling that a “misstep” is like calling the explosion of the Hindenburg a “mislanding.” The FBI has now gone through regular cycles of scandals followed by assurances of self-reform.


Even if one is willing to suspend disbelief over the latest “trust us were the government” press release, it ignores that fact that the FBI was accused again in 2020 of playing a role in burying the Hunter Biden laptop scandal. If Congress wants to reform this system, Durham has given it a blueprint for how to do it. After the Report, there is now an undeniable right of Congress to seek this testimony as part of its legislative and oversight functions under Article I. While figures like Elias may “decline to be voluntarily interviewed,” this does not have to be voluntary exercise. In speaking with many witnesses, Durham was dealing with some potential crimes with expired statutes of limitation. If witnesses lie to Congress, they could also face charges under a new statute of limitations. If history is any measure, nothing concentrates the mind as much as a subpoena and immunity grant . . . and it may be time to concentrate some minds in Washington.

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“..No republic can continue to exist when it becomes trivially easy for one political faction or another to deliberately weaponize law enforcement..”

It’s Over Folks (Denninger)

America, that is. There is one last chance to save it: The FBI and DOJ must be disbanded, everyone working for it fired with no pensions, no benefits, no nothing, and if we need the functions of either agency and/or DHS they must be reconstituted with hard criminal penalties for anything that even smells like this in the future. If not, well, we’re done. We’re done because it is now seven years after this injustice occurred, it was not minor, it was not due to “oversight” or “accident” and by the most-charitable read the reason it happened is political bias through the entire organization from the top down leaving nobody to challenge it. Further, knowing this the Democrat party political campaign of the time (Hillary’s) deliberately suborned the acts of the FBI and instead of being told to shove it and being publicly outed for their attempt they got what they wanted including the personal and financial destruction of several people. A huge number of members of Congress then went on to use their speech and debate clause to slander people left, right and center all based on these lies.

Current law and the Constitution provide us no means of punishment of said members of Congress due to that speech and debate clause but no such protection exists for the principals nor the FBI personnel involved. Let me just cite this: “Given the foregoing, and viewing the facts in a light most favorable to the Crossfire Hurricane investigators, it seems highly likely that, at a minimum, confirmation bias played a significant role in the FBI’s acceptance of extraordinarily serious allegations derived from uncorroborated information that had not been subjected to the typical exacting analysis employed by the FBI and other members of the Intelligence Community. In short, it is the Office’s assessment that the FBI discounted or willfully ignored material information that did not support the narrative of a collusive relationship between Trump and Russia. Similarly, the FBI Inspection Division Report says that the investigators “repeatedly ignore[d] or explain[ed] away evidence contrary to the theory the Trump campaign … had conspired with Russia …. It appeared that … there was a pattern of assuming nefarious intent.” 1749 An objective and honest assessment of these strands of information should have caused the FBI to question not only the predication for Crossfire Hurricane, but also to reflect on whether the FBI was being manipulated for political or other purposes. Unfortunately, it did not.”

That’s the most-charitable read. I decline to provide that given the repeated and amplified abuse out of the Democrat Party, including from Hillary, Schiff and others particularly considering that exactly zero of said persons have apologized or in any other way backed off from their knowing lies. Folks the capacity to do this on a forward basis must be destroyed. This is not optional. No republic can continue to exist when it becomes trivially easy for one political faction or another to deliberately weaponize law enforcement to go after disfavored individuals based on their political affiliation, inventing not just domestic events but claimed collusion with foreign powers that never occurred.

Indeed it is arguable that these very same people were in fact doing what they accused Trump of, but with Ukraine and China instead of Russia — and there is now developing hard evidence of the money flows involved in same. The extent to which they reached into policy during the Obama years and to which it influenced or even controlled the policies of the administration during the pandemic, an outbreak that we have every reason to believe sourced from that very same China, is not yet known. There are over 1 million dead Americans over the last three years as a direct and indirect consequence and sixty million, roughly, children who got screwed in whole or part out of their education during those three years. Never mind all the other people who got screwed and all of the inflation which we have and will continue to suffer under.

Greenwald

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Gaetz

You can tell the level of undue pressure from the number of whistleblowers…

FBI Concerned Jan. 6 Footage Would Expose Undercover Agents, Informants (ET)

FBI officials were concerned that footage from inside the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, would show undercover agents and confidential informants, a whistleblower said in testimony revealed on May 18. George Hill, a retired supervisory intelligence analyst who worked out of the FBI’s Boston field office, recounted that the bureau’s Washington field office (WFO) pressured officials in Boston to open investigations on 138 people who attended a rally on Jan. 6, 2021, even though there were no indications the people violated the law. Boston officials pushed back, saying they would need evidence, such as footage of individuals inside the Capitol, to open investigations of the individuals. “Happy to do it. Show us where they were inside the Capitol, and we’ll look into it,” one official was quoted as saying.

Jim Jordan

“We can’t show you those videos unless you can tell us the exact time and place those individuals were inside the Capitol,” WFO officials responded, according to Hill. Hill said Boston officials questioned why they couldn’t get access to the tranche of some 11,000 hours of footage from inside the Capitol. “Because there may be—may be—UCs, undercover officers, or … confidential human sources, on those videos whose identity we need to protect,” Washington-based officials responded. Hill recounted the discussions during testimony to the U.S. House’s Select Subcommittee on the Weaponization of the Federal Government. The clip from the testimony was played during a hearing on May 18 and detailed in a report the panel released based on whistleblower disclosures.


Marcus Allen, another FBI employee who has also become a whistleblower, has alleged that he was retaliated against because he shared an email with other FBI workers that questioned whether FBI Director Christopher Wray was truthful while testifying to Congress. “You believe that Christopher Wray indicated that there were no confidential informants, no FBI assets that were present at the Capitol on Jan. 6 that were part of the violent riot, isn’t that right?” Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.), a member of the subcommittee, asked Allen. “Yes, sir,” Allen said. They appeared to be referring to testimony given behind closed doors. After playing the clip of Hill’s comments, Gaetz said, “You got retaliated against for the very thing, for saying the very thing that the Washington field office was telling Boston.”

FBI

Wray told one congressional panel in a public hearing in late 2022 that he wouldn’t say whether the bureau had confidential sources embedded among the Jan. 6 protesters. “As I’m sure you can appreciate, I have to be very careful about what I can say, about when we do and do not, and where we have and have not used confidential human sources,” Wray said. “But to the extent there’s a suggestion, for example, that the FBI’s confidential human sources or FBI employees in someway instigated or orchestrated Jan 6th, that’s categorically false.” [..] Garret O’Boyle, another FBI special agent who is now a whistleblower, told the House panel that he was pressured by at least one agent based in Washington to violate FBI policy and also the law by serving grand jury subpoenas against a person who was the subject of an anonymous tip. “They tried to get me to serve a federal grand jury subpoena when there was no proper predicate to do so,” O’Boyle said on May 18.

O’Boyle

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Gorsuch’s full text at the URL. This is the background.

Justice Neil Gorsuch Speaks Out Against Lockdowns and Mandates (BI)

Justice Neil Gorsuch’s opinion in Arizona v. Mayorkas marks the culmination of his three-year effort to oppose the Covid regime’s eradication of civil liberties, unequal application of law, and political favoritism. From the outset, Gorsuch remained vigilant as public officials used the pretext of Covid to augment their power and strip the citizenry of its rights in defiance of long standing constitutional principles. While other justices (even some purported constitutionalists) absconded their responsibility to uphold the Bill of Rights, Gorsuch diligently defended the Constitution. This became most apparent in the Supreme Court’s cases involving religious liberty in the Covid era.

Beginning in May 2020, the Supreme Court heard cases challenging Covid restrictions on religious attendance across the country. The Court was divided along familiar political lines: the liberal bloc of Justices Ginsburg, Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan voted to uphold deprivations of liberty as a valid exercise of states’ police power; Justice Gorsuch led conservatives Alito, Kavanaugh, and Thomas in challenging the irrationality of the edicts; Chief Justice Roberts sided with the liberal bloc, justifying his decision by deferring to public health experts. “Unelected judiciary lacks the background, competence, and expertise to assess public health and is not accountable to the people,” Roberts wrote in South Bay v. Newsom, the first Covid case to reach the Court.

And so the Court repeatedly upheld executive orders attacking religious liberty. In South Bay, the Court denied a California church’s request to block state restrictions on church attendance in a five to four decision. Roberts sided with the liberal bloc, urging deference to the public health apparatus as constitutional freedoms disappeared from American life. In July 2020, the Court again split 5-4 and denied a church’s emergency motion for injunctive relief against Nevada’s Covid restrictions. Governor Steve Sisolak capped religious gatherings at 50 people, regardless of the precautions taken or the size of the establishment. The same order allowed for other groups, including casinos, to hold up to 500 people. The Court, with Chief Justice Roberts joining the liberal justices again, denied the motion in an unsigned motion without explanation.

Justice Gorsuch issued a one paragraph dissent that exposed the hypocrisy and irrationality of the Covid regime. “Under the Governor’s edict, a 10-screen ‘multiplex’ may host 500 moviegoers at any time. A casino, too, may cater to hundreds at once, with perhaps six people huddled at each craps table here and a similar number gathered around every roulette wheel there,” he wrote. But the Governor’s lockdown order imposed a 50-worshiper limit for religious gatherings, no matter the buildings’ capacities. “The First Amendment prohibits such obvious discrimination against the exercise of religion,” Gorsuch wrote. “But there is no world in which the Constitution permits Nevada to favor Caesars Palace over Calvary Chapel.”

Gorsuch understood the threat to Americans’ liberties, but he was powerless with Chief Justice Roberts cowing to the interests of the public health bureaucracy. That changed when Justice Ginsburg died in September 2020. The following month, Justice Barrett joined the Court and reversed the Court’s 5-4 split on religious freedom in the Covid era. The following month, the Court granted an emergency injunction to block Governor Cuomo’s executive order that limited attendance at religious services to 10 to 25 people. Gorsuch was now in the majority, protecting Americans from the tyranny of unconstitutional edicts. In a concurring opinion in the New York case, he again compared restrictions on secular activities and religious gatherings; “according to the Governor, it may be unsafe to go to church, but it is always fine to pick up another bottle of wine, shop for a new bike, or spend the afternoon exploring your distal points and meridians… Who knew public health would so perfectly align with secular convenience?”

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“Thank God for someone who can still speak their mind and won’t take some guff off a journalist who tells him he can’t speak his mind.”

Rand Paul: Elon Musk Will Go Down As A Historic Champion For Free Speech (SM)

Senator Rand Paul praised Elon Musk Wednesday for standing up for free speech, predicting that the Twitter owner will be recorded as a key figure in history in the fight against censorship. Referring to Musk’s compelling take down of a CNBC hack earlier this week, Paul noted “Thank God for someone who can still speak their mind and won’t take some guff off a journalist who tells him he can’t speak his mind.”
“Somewhere along the way something happened and people began to think that only certain forms of speech were acceptable,” The Senator urged.


“Then along came Elon Musk,” Paul continued, adding “The country, the Bill of Rights frankly, all of us, are going to be very thankful that a guy with a lot of money bought a social media entity and allowed us to see the government colluding to limit speech.” “People need to get this right. Private companies can decide what they want to air, newspapers can, television shows can. But what we cannot allow to happen is the government to collude with private business and use them basically as their extension and their arm of censor,” Paul emphasised. He added that “Elon Musk exposed this only because he had 44 billion dollars to buy a company and expose their inner workings off collusion with government.”

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The celestial entrance known as ‘Heaven’s Gate’ located within the breathtaking Tianmen Mountain in China. Situated approximately 5,000 feet above sea level, Tianmen Cave in China stands as the world’s highest naturally formed arch. Accessing this remarkable landmark involves ascending 999 steps referred to as the “stairway to heaven,” where the number nine holds significant meaning in Chinese numerology, symbolizing good fortune and eternity.

 

 

Most people refuse to even think about pedophilia. But that creates the space for it to exist.

 

 

Whale trap

 

 

There’s a dog school in Canada so they don’t stay home alone. This is a picture taken on the way to school.

 

 

 

 

 

Support the Automatic Earth in virustime with Paypal, Bitcoin and Patreon.

 

 

 

 

 

May 102023
 


Vincent van Gogh Stairway at Auvers 1890

 

Ukraine’s Future Lies in the Great Reset (Pabst)
Any Ideology of Superiority Is Criminal – Putin (TASS)
Globalist Elites Provoke Bloody Conflicts And Coups – Putin (RT)
UN Chief Says Peace Talks Between Ukraine And Russia Impossible Now (RT)
UN Skeptical About China Helping To End Ukraine Conflict (RT)
‘All’ NATO Members Support Ukraine Membership – Stoltenberg (RT)
Can BRICS Save Argentina From Disaster? (Vargas)
“We’re Back”: Tucker Carlson Moves Show To Twitter (ZH)
Journalists-on-Journalists Crime (Patrick Lawrence)
War for Profit: A Very Short History (Brad Wolf)
Jury Rejects Rape Claim Against Trump But Finds Liable For ‘Sexual Abuse’ (ZH)
If Hunter Is Indicted (Lipson)
House Committee Prepares to Hold Blinken in Contempt (Turley)
Australian Lawmakers Call On US To Drop Assange Extradition Bid (RT)
Why the Release of Julian Assange Is Crucial for Our Future (Scheidler)

 

 

JFK WWII
https://twitter.com/i/status/1656006128722141185

 

 

 

 

 

 

https://twitter.com/i/status/1656072328277573634

 

 

The power of propaganda.

 

KJP
https://twitter.com/i/status/1656000904959791104

 

 

Zel cartoon
https://twitter.com/i/status/1655688459590172674

 

 

Trunews

 

 

Note: he doesn’t confirm anything.

 

 

 

 

It’s all a literally bloody experiment.

Ukraine’s Future Lies in the Great Reset (Pabst)

“Ukraine 2030 — the freest and most digital country in the world. Without bureaucracy, but with strong tech industry. Cashless & paperless. This is the future we are building.” These were the words of Ukraine’s Minister of Digital Transformation Mykhailo Fedorov, who posted a glossy video showcasing Ukraine’s sci-fi-esque future to Twitter. The video boasts of Ukraine’s plans (after its victory over Russia, of course!) to become the “freest and most convenient country in the next 10 years.” In this theoretical scenario, Ukraine is “the first country to abandon paper money,” tele-health and tele-education programs abound, courts’ decisions are guided by artificial intelligence, and cities can even defend themselves with an “ultra-modern iron dome.”

But the juxtaposition between the video’s boasts and Ukraine’s dire reality on the ground grows more uncanny by the day.November 2022 reports quietly admitted that roughly 100,000 Ukrainian soldiers had been killed or wounded in action, and apparently leaked documents from April 2023 exposed Ukraine’s especially weak wartime positioning, where Ukrainian casualties outnumber those of the Russians four to one. Meanwhile, complaints of low ammunition — with Ukraine running through ammo faster than the US and NATO can replace it — run amok, and in Bakhmut’s “meat-grinder,” the estimated lifespan of Ukrainian soldiers in battle was reported as being a grim four hours in late February. Meanwhile, millions of Ukrainians have fled home as sky-high inflation rates and energy prices have slashed living standards in Europe and internationally.

But as the war drudges on, Ukrainian officials have zeroed in on the conflict’s alleged “silver linings,” bragging about the new technological developments and investment possibilities that have surfaced during the conflict, such as Ukraine’s “state in a smartphone” Diia app, the e-hryvnia, mounting technological capabilities spurred by corporate war-time involvement in Ukraine, a further crystallization of the public-private partnership as a civil society instrument, and Ukraine’s budding “green” revolution, which is slated to blossom during its prospective elite-backed reconstruction. While these and other initiatives taking place as part of Ukraine’s war-time and reconstruction efforts are being done in the name of modernization, convenience, and democracy, these efforts instead contribute to a technological and political terrain that is conducive to depriving the civilians of Ukraine, and all nations, of their sovereignty, privacy, and dignity.

As I illustrate in this investigative piece, such efforts are part of the larger drive towards the related phenomena of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, today’s technological revolution that blurs the physical, digital, and biological spheres, and the World Economic Forum’s Great Reset, an elite-driven initiative to establish Klaus Schwab’s vision of stakeholder capitalism, where corporations are positioned as “trustees of society” to address the world’s economic and social woes.

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“..in essence, a system of robbery, violence and oppression.”

Any Ideology of Superiority Is Criminal – Putin (TASS)

Any superiority ideology is, by definition, repulsive, deadly, and criminal, Russian President Vladimir Putin said during the Victory Day parade on the Red Square on Tuesday. “We believe that any ideology of superiority is inherently disgusting, criminal, and deadly,” he said. At the same time, Putin added that Western elites “still talk about their exclusivity, put people against each other and divide society, provoke bloody conflicts and coups, sow hatred, Russophobia, aggressive nationalism, destroy those family, traditional values that make humans human.” All this, he said, is done in order “to continue dictating, imposing their will, rights and rules on the peoples – in essence, a system of robbery, violence and oppression.” “They seem to have forgotten what the Nazis’ insane claims to world domination led to,” the president added. “They have forgotten who defeated this monstrous, total evil, who stood as a wall for their homeland and did not spare their lives for the liberation of the peoples of Europe,” he said.

https://twitter.com/i/status/1655836194713006080

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“The Ukrainians became“hostages” of the coup that took place in the country in 2014 and were turned into “a bargaining chip” by the West..”

Globalist Elites Provoke Bloody Conflicts And Coups – Putin (RT)

Western elites have forgotten the consequences of the Nazis’ “insane ambitions,” Russian President Vladimir Putin said during his Victory Day Parade speech on Red Square in Moscow. Russia believes that “any ideology of superiority is by its nature disgusting, criminal and deadly,”the president pointed out. “The globalist elites keep insisting on their exceptionalism; they pit people against each other, split societies, provoke bloody conflicts and coups, sow hatred, Russophobia and aggressive nationalism, destroy traditional family values that make human a human,” Putin said. According to the Russian leader, all this is being done by the US and allies in order to “further dictate their will, their rights and their rules” and implement what is basically “a system of robbery, violence and suppression” on the international stage.


“It seems that they have forgotten what the insane ambitions of the Nazis led to. They have forgotten who defeated this monstrous, total evil,” he stressed. Referring to the conflict in Ukraine, Putin said that “a real war has been unleashed against out Motherland. But we resisted international terrorism. We’ll also defend the residents of Donbass and assure our security.” The aim of the West is “to achieve the disintegration and destruction of our country, nullify the results of World War II, completely break down the system of global security and international law, and strangle any sovereign centers of development,” he insisted. The US and its allies are to blame for the outbreak of the conflict in Ukraine, the head of state said. “Overwhelming ambitions, arrogance and permissiveness inevitably lead to tragedies. This is the reason for the catastrophe that the Ukrainian people are now experiencing,” he pointed out. The Ukrainians became“hostages” of the coup that took place in the country in 2014 and were turned into “a bargaining chip” by the West, which uses the country to implement its “cruel selfish plans.”

https://twitter.com/i/status/1655948103206465539

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The UN does not want peace.

UN Chief Says Peace Talks Between Ukraine And Russia Impossible Now (RT)

The peace talks between Ukraine and Russia are impossible now, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres said in an interview with Spain’s El Pais published on Tuesday. “Unfortunately, I think that the talks on peace are impossible now,” he said. According to him, “both sides are convinced that they can win.” “We are in dialogue with both sides as far as possible to solve specific problems. The most important initiative was the export of grain from Ukraine… And now I do not see the possibility of an immediate ceasefire and peace negotiations,” Guterres stated.

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And if peace were to break out regardless, then China should not be its agent. That would threaten the UN.

UN Skeptical About China Helping To End Ukraine Conflict (RT)

Offers to mediate in the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine are unlikely to come to fruition at the moment since both parties seem to be “fully involved” in continuing the war, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres has said. “Peace negotiations are not possible at this time,” Guterres told Spain’s El País newspaper in an interview. Asked whether the peace initiatives floated by China and Brazil, were “doomed to fail,” the UN chief said both parties to the conflict seemed to be too resolved to continue the hostilities for the mediation offers to work. “I already said that peace negotiations at this time are not going to happen. I hope in the future, yes. There was talk of a Russian offensive in the winter and a Ukrainian one in the spring. It is evident that the parties are fully involved into the war,” Guterres stated.

The grim prediction comes amid an apparent uptick in fighting, with both Moscow and Kiev ramping up long-range attacks against each other in recent days. The increase in military activities comes amid the long-hyped looming counteroffensive by Kiev’s forces, repeatedly cheered by the country’s top officials. Early this year, China unveiled a 12-point peace roadmap designed to bring the conflict, which has been raging since February 2022, to an end. The initiative got a positive reception in Moscow, with Russia’s top leadership signaling its readiness to discuss it further. However, the roadmap was received poorly by Kiev and its Western backers, who accused Beijing of allegedly already siding with Russia and, therefore, having no say on potential peace talks.

Brazil has also been actively pushing for Moscow and Kiev to come to the table, with the country having taken a neutral stance on the conflict. Brazilian President Lula da Silva has condemned both Russia’s military operation and the collective West for “encouraging war,” urging them to stop arming Kiev and to push for a ceasefire instead. “There is no use now in saying who is right, who is wrong. What we have to do now is stop the war,” Lula said late in April, claiming that “no one in the world is talking about peace except for me.”

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NATO wants no peace either. It wants to cross Russia’s no. 1 red line.

‘All’ NATO Members Support Ukraine Membership – Stoltenberg (RT)

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg has told the Washington Post that all member states have agreed to welcome Ukraine after it defeats Russia. He also revealed that the US-led military bloc had started backing Kiev in 2014. In the interview, conducted last week at the bloc’s Brussels headquarters and published on Tuesday, Stoltenberg told the WP’s editorial staff that “all NATO allies agree that Ukraine will become a member of the alliance.” “Then the question is when, and I cannot give you a timetable on that,” Stoltenberg added. The NATO head has made this claim once before, last month when he visited Kiev. This prompted a one-word response from Hungarian PM Viktor Orban, who suggested that the bloc had not actually bothered to obtain consent from Budapest.

Stoltenberg told the Post that NATO was currently helping Kiev “transition from Soviet-era equipment, doctrines and standards” and become “interoperable with NATO forces,” while reforming and modernizing their military and defense institutions. “The urgent task now is to ensure that Ukraine prevails as a sovereign, independent nation, because if Ukraine doesn’t prevail, then there is no issue to discuss at all.” According to Stoltenberg, NATO has two fundamental tasks “in the war,” one being to “support Ukraine,” the other to prevent escalation “by making absolutely clear that we are not party to the conflict.” The deployment of 40,000 troops to eastern Europe is also helping avoid escalation with Russia, he argued. The former Norwegian prime minister, who has been running NATO since October 2014, also revealed that the US, Canada, and the UK have provided 78% of the bloc’s support to Ukraine, and have been training Kiev’s troops since 2014.

“The war in Ukraine has fundamentally changed NATO, but then you have to remember the war didn’t start in 2022. The war started in 2014,” Stoltenberg told the Post, noting that all members of the bloc have “significantly increased” their military spending since then. Ukraine’s government was overthrown by US-backed nationalists in a February 2014 coup. The new authorities quickly moved to violently crush any opposition, leading Crimea to seek protection from Moscow. Protests against the coup government were met with a massacre in Odessa, terror in Kharkov, and a “punishment expedition” against Donetsk and Lugansk, which responded by declaring independence.

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“.. the more Argentina wants to produce, the more US dollars it needs..”

Can BRICS Save Argentina From Disaster? (Vargas)

Argentina recently announced that it will be adopting the Chinese yuan, rather than the US dollar, for trade with the Asian giant – the latest development in a wider global process of de-dollarization. This comes as Argentina is currently pushing to formally join BRICS, for which it says it has the support of Brazil, India, and for which Russia and China have hinted at possible support in the past. Argentina is South America’s second-largest economy with significant potential to contribute to BRICS, but the country is also in the grips of an increasingly extreme economic crisis with runaway inflation that’s hitting new highs every week. Can a multipolar financial system help struggling economies like Argentina? Can this move away from the dollar, and membership of BRICS, save the country from potential disaster? Yes, but only if Argentina stops flip-flopping on economic and foreign policy decision-making.

Argentina’s economic turmoil has reached desperate levels, a result of debt slavery to the International Monetary Fund, lack of access to dollars, and a historic drought that has battered crucial agricultural exports. While the official exchange rate with the US dollar is 222 pesos for 1 USD, the ‘Dollar Blue’, the unofficial rate offered on the black market, reached up to 500 Pesos in recent days. For context, in 2014 under leftist President Cristina Kirchner, the official rate was 8 pesos for 1 USD and the unofficial rate hovered around 12-14 pesos. Annual inflation stands at 104% and Argentinians have attempted to combat this by holding their savings in US dollars, and even in cryptocurrency. The crypto market is not as bullish as it was a couple of years ago, and the Fed’s interest rate increases along with speculation within Argentina has made dollars very hard and expensive to access.

More importantly, the colossal debt built up with the IMF is dollar-denominated. Argentinian economist Gisela Cernadas, now working in China with Dongsheng News, spoke exclusively to RT and explained the perilous situation caused by dependency on the dollar. “Argentina has been suffering, for an extended period of time, from a structurally unbalanced current account,” she said. “This means that the country needs more US dollars to function than what it has. “To carry out its productive activities, Argentina needs immediate inputs that have to be imported, such as machinery and equipment that has to be imported in dollars,” Cernadas explained.

“Therefore, the more Argentina wants to produce, the more US dollars it needs. So, this structurally unbalanced current account puts pressure on the currency exchange market.” In this context, the move to de-dollarize trade with China is clearly a positive move, in so far as it will ease the stranglehold that the US dollar has on the country. It will also help protect the central banks’ foreign reserves. “Paying part of the imports from China using Chinese currency instead of the US dollar will help relieve the pressure on the current account deficit,” said Cernadas. “It’s not going to solve the structural problem of needing more foreign currency to produce and carry out its productive activity, but at least it will relieve parts of the demand they have.”

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“The rule of what you can’t say defines everything..”

Huge boost for Musk as well; he can showcase new Twitter features..

“We’re Back”: Tucker Carlson Moves Show To Twitter (ZH)

According to Twitter owner Elon Musk, Twitter and Carlson have not signed “a deal of any kind whatsoever,” which we assume means that Tucker has found a clever way around his Fox contract which stipulated that he has to stay off the air until 2025 insofar as other networks are concerned. “Rewards means subscriptions and advertising revenue share (still working on software needed for latter), which is a function of how many people subscribe and the advertising views associated with his content,” Musk tweeted.

As hinted at in a Sunday Axios report, former Fox News host Tucker Carlson announced on Tuesday that he’s moving his show to Twitter. “There aren’t many platforms left that allow free speech. The last big one remaining in the world is Twitter,” Carlson said in a monologue – in which he took a shot at Fox, saying “If you bump up against the limits [in the news business] you will be fired for it.” “The rule of what you can’t say defines everything,” he said, adding “You can’t have a free society if people aren’t allowed to say what they think is true… There aren’t many platforms left that allow free speech. The last big one… is Twitter, where we are now.”


“Twitter has long served as the place where our national conversation incubates and develops,” he continued, adding that other networks are “thinly disguised propaganda outlets.” “You see it on cable news, you talk about it on Twitter,” said Carlson. “The result may feel like a debate, but actually the gatekeepers are still in charge. We think that’s a bad system. We know exactly how it works and we’re sick of it.”

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“..the hoards of flunkies working for corporate media have it in for Tucker Carlson because he takes positions that are forbidden to them..”

Journalists-on-Journalists Crime (Patrick Lawrence)

I’ve read a lot of smear since Fox News dismissed Tucker Carlson as its premier evening news presenter late last month. How could I not? It was everywhere, and more fecal matter is being flung Carlson’s way as we speak. My favorite in this line so far comes from The American Prospect. “Farewell to a Neo–Nazi Blowhard” was the head on its piece last week. Carlson, you see, is a “neofascist,” TAP wants us to know. What hollow hyperbole. How few are the level heads in mainstream media these days. How cavalierly do our liberal media debase the English language. How difficult it is to take journalists seriously as they attack another journalist because his views do not match theirs. What can we learn from all the unhinged denunciations we read daily?

What do they tell us about the predicaments of independent minds in journalism—and no matter what you think of Carlson, he has one—and by extension independent journalism altogether? In my read, independent media are in a state of siege that has escalated markedly of late. Although he worked for a corporate-owned cable network, I take Carlson’s fate as symptomatic of an intensifying attack on any media that deviate from the national security state’s ever more rigorously enforced orthodoxies. The past week brings grim news of the determination of political elites and deeply insecure mainstream media to stifle dissent in wall-to-wall fashion. It is time to pay close attention. This is more now than the grousing of a few independent journalists such as your columnist. Everything up to how we live and think is at stake.

Setting aside all the dross casting Carlson as the Beelzebub of our profession, the remarks that stay in my mind are of another kind. Diana Johnstone, the distinguished Europeanist who has corresponded from Paris for decades, sent a brief note after Fox’s announcement, calling Carlson “the last free voice on mainstream television.” I paused and wondered if I agreed. And then decided I did. “The TV host paid the price because he tried the impossible: straddling the divide between corporate media and critical journalism,” Jonathan Cook, who I hold in the same high regard I have for Johnstone, wrote last week on his blog. “He exposed ordinary Americans to critical perspectives, especially on U.S. foreign policy, that they had no hope of hearing anywhere else—and most certainly not from so-called ‘liberal’ corporate media outlets like CNN and MSNBC.

[..] the hoards of flunkies working for corporate media have it in for Tucker Carlson because he takes positions that are forbidden to them. Among these many, Carlson opposes the war in Ukraine, the military-industrial complex, covert coup operations in Cuba and elsewhere, Washington’s subterfuge at the United Nations and America’s imperialist project altogether. Carlson took Seymour Hersh’s report on the Biden’s regime’s covert op to destroy the Nord Stream pipelines for what it is: a tour de force piece of work by the premier investigative reporter now writing. Corporate-paid journalists detest Carlson for these things. I imagine there is a lot of subliminal envy attaching to Tucker Carlson’s professional performance over the years.

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“Senator Nye suggested that upon a declaration of war by Congress, taxes on annual income under $10,000 should automatically be doubled and higher incomes should be taxed at 98%.”

“If such policies were enacted, businessmen would become our leading pacifists.”

War for Profit: A Very Short History (Brad Wolf)

TIn 1934 a book written by Helmuth Engelbrecht called The Merchants of Death became a best seller. The book exposed the unethical business practices of weapons manufacturers and analyzed their enormous profits during World War I. The author concluded that “the rise and development of the arms merchants reveals them as a growing menace to World Peace.” While not the only reason for the US entering the war, it became clear the Merchants of Death lobbied both Congress and the President for war. The American public was incensed. In 1934 almost 100,000 Americans signed a petition opposing increased armament production. Veterans paraded through Washington DC in 1935 in a march for peace. And Marine Major General Smedley Butler, two-time Medal of Honor winner, published his book War is a Racket, claiming he had been “a high-class muscle man for big business, for Wall Street and the bankers.

In short, I was a racketeer; a gangster for capitalism.” His book too became a bestseller. The growing wave of public outrage led Senator Gerald Nye to initiate congressional hearings investigating whether US corporations, including weapons manufacturers, had led the United States into World War I. In two years, the Nye committee held 93 hearings and called more than 200 witnesses to testify, including JP Morgan and Pierre S. DuPont. The committee conducted an extensive investigation searching the records of weapons manufacturers. They uncovered criminal and unethical actions including bribery of foreign officials, lobbying the United States government to obtain foreign sales, selling weapons to both sides of international disputes, and the covert undermining of disarmament conferences.

“The committee listened daily to men striving to defend acts which found them nothing more than international racketeers, bent upon gaining profit through a game of arming the world to fight itself,” Senator Nye declared in an October 1934 radio address. The Senate Nye Committee recommended price controls, the transfer of Navy shipyards out of private hands, and increased industrial taxes. Senator Nye suggested that upon a declaration of war by Congress, taxes on annual income under $10,000 should automatically be doubled and higher incomes should be taxed at 98%. A journalist wrote at the time, “If such policies were enacted, businessmen would become our leading pacifists.” The American public was outraged at the committee’s findings and so created some of the largest peace organizations the country had ever known.

Committed to staying out of all future European wars, American college campuses in the 1930s had thousands of students taking oaths swearing they would never fight in a foreign war. Farmers, laborers, intellectuals, ministers, people from all walks of life declared they would never again participate in a war fought to increase the profits of corporations. And then, business fought back. They lobbied those in Congress to cut off funding for the Nye committee, which they soon did. A smear campaign was orchestrated against Senator Nye. The committees’ days were numbered. In the end, the Nye Committee demonstrated that “these businesses were at the heart and center of a system that made going to war inevitable. They paved and greased the road to war.”

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2012 episode of Law and Order SVU.

Jury Rejects Rape Claim Against Trump But Finds Liable For ‘Sexual Abuse’ (ZH)

A New York City jury has found former President Trump liable for sexual assault, but not rape, in a New York defamation case brought by accuser E. Jean Carroll. The jury awarded Carroll $20,000 in punitive damages for a battery claim, and $2.7 million in compensatory damages for defamation by Trump. The verdict came after less than three hours of deliberation by jurors in US District Court in lower Manhattan. The jury did not find Trump liable for rape, as Carroll alleged. Trump, who has long-denied her allegation dating back to the mid-90s, accused Carroll of using false claims as a way to promote her book. “I’ll say it with great respect: Number one, she’s not my type. Number two, it never happened,” the-then president told The Hill in an interview at the White House in June 2019.

“U.S. District Judge Lewis A. Kaplan read instructions on the law to the nine-person jury before the panel began discussing Carroll’s allegations of battery and defamation shortly before noon. If they believe Carroll, jurors can award compensatory and punitive damages. Trump, who did not attend the trial, has insisted he never sexually assaulted Carroll or even knew her. Kaplan told jurors that the first question on the verdict form will be to decide whether they think there is more than a 50% chance that Trump raped Carroll inside a store dressing room. If they answer yes, they will then decide whether compensatory and punitive damages should be awarded. If they answer no on the rape question, they can then decide if Trump subjected her to lesser forms of assault involving sexual contact without her consent or forcible touching to degrade her or gratify his sexual desire. If they answer yes on either of those questions, they will decide if damages are appropriate.” -AP

The nine-member panel began discussing verdicts at 11:50 a.m. ET after Judge Lewis Kaplan gave his final instructions and a 10-question verdict form. Carroll, 78, sued Trump in 2019, claiming the Republican sexually assaulted her in 1995 or 1996 in a dressing room at a Bergdorf Goodman department store in Manhattan. Because the alleged attack happened decades ago, Carroll was originally barred from suing over sexual battery, pushing her to sue for defamation over allegedly disparaging comments Trump made about the rape allegation. Trump denied her allegation at the time and accused her of using false claims as a way to promote her book. “I’ll say it with great respect: Number one, she’s not my type. Number two, it never happened,” the-then president told The Hill in an interview at the White House in June 2019. The D.C. Court of Appeals was then asked to weigh in on whether Trump was acting within the scope of his presidential duties when he denied raping Carroll and dismissed her during the interview. Trump last October called her claims “a hoax” and “a lie.”

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Today is Comer’s day.

If Hunter Is Indicted (Lipson)

First, a pardon would set off the biggest political firestorm since Watergate. It would look worse than self-dealing, bad as that is. It would look like the president is covering up his family’s corruption, not only to get Hunter off the hook but to prevent the disclosure of damning evidence in court. That evidence is likely to touch many more Biden family members than Hunter, and perhaps the president himself. The more Biden family members who are implicated, the more the whole operation looks like a concerted operation to monetize Joe’s political position. It also might threaten to shred Joe’s repeated claim that he knew nothing about any family business interests or influence peddling. The wider the sleaze, the harder it is to sell that story.

The chairman of the House committee investigating these issues has said Hunter’s corruption was merely one part of the family business. And that business was selling influence. Rep. James Comer has publicly said that his House Oversight Committee has already collected evidence that nine Biden family members are involved in sketchy business deals, including substantial payments from foreign firms. Some of those firms are closely linked to the Chinese Communist Party. Comer added that his committee is investigating the possible involvement of at least three more family members, as well as Joe Biden’s own role. His conclusion: “The entire Biden family” is entrapped in the financial enrichment scheme. So far, however, Comer hasn’t named names or provided the evidence. He says he will provide much more at a major press conference Wednesday.

Comer’s principle suggestion is that the Biden family’s influence-peddling scheme is much broader, and their criminal actions more serious, than isolated schemes perpetrated by the president’s conniving second son. He adds that his evidence points to Joe Biden’s direct involvement, including possible payments for official actions. That is what he told Maria Bartiromo on Sunday, although he hasn’t yet provided the evidence for that incendiary allegation. Comer is also attacking the FBI for desultory investigation – which ignored much of the malfeasance – and calling out the mainstream media for its concerted silence.

The Internal Revenue Service might be implicated, too, since a lot of payments – and a lot of Hunter’s income – went through what Comer calls the family’s “web of LLCs.” A senior supervisory agent at the IRS is seeking whistleblower protection to tell Congress about “preferential treatment and politics improperly infecting decisions and protocols that would normally be followed” in investigating Hunter’s taxes. If political pressure really was applied to the IRS over Hunter’s taxes, or if senior agents acted improperly to curry favor, those would obviously be very serious matters, legally and politically. Comer and the House Republicans in the committee’s majority want that testimony under oath and are seeking responses from the IRS and DOJ.

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“The question is whether Blinken and the Administration really want to test this in court.”

House Committee Prepares to Hold Blinken in Contempt (Turley)

The House of Representatives and the Biden Administration appear in a staring contest waiting for any sign of Blinken. Rep. Michael McCaul (R-TX) warned Secretary of State Antony Blinken that the House Foreign Affairs Committee is moving to hold him in contempt of Congress for refusing to comply with subpoena requests related to the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan. There is no question that the Committee has a legitimate oversight interest in the disastrous withdrawal from Afghanistan at a huge loss of life, abandonment of thousands of allies, and seven billion dollars in military equipment. The committee specifically wants to review a full copy of a dissent cable that had been signed by nearly two dozen State Department officials warning Blinken of a Taliban insurgency in Afghanistan a month before the terrorist group’s takeover occurred.

The Wall Street Journal reported that the cable undermines the claims of the Biden Administration that it had no forewarning of the chaos that would unfold in the country. The State Department has stonewalled the Committee, offering oral testimony and a summary while refusing to turn over the document. In his letter, McCaul warned that “the Department is now in violation of its legal obligation to produce these documents and must do so immediately.” McCaul added that “It strains credulity to believe that the official responsible for preparing the cable summary and briefing Congress on it would be unable to provide this information.” This has not been a great month for Blinken. He was earlier identified as the Biden campaign associate who “triggered” the infamous letter of 51 former intelligence officials claiming that the Hunter Biden laptop was likely “Russian disinformation.”

He was then named as a contact of Hunter Biden in the Obama Administration as part of an alleged influence peddling operation. (Blinken previously denied such contacts and was accused of lying under oath). The withdrawal from Afghanistan has been condemned by Democrats and Republicans alike. Given the loss of lives and equipment (as well as the impact on U.S. standing), there could not be more obvious subject matter for congressional inquiry. The question is whether Blinken and the Administration really want to test this in court. Attorney General Merrick Garland would likely decline to prosecute Blinken for contempt (despite his green lighting such prosecutions against former Trump officials), but the Congress could go to court to compel production.

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“..during a meeting with US Ambassador Caroline Kennedy in Canberra on Tuesday..”

Australian Lawmakers Call On US To Drop Assange Extradition Bid (RT)

A delegation of Australian lawmakers called for the United States to end its attempts to extradite and prosecute Julian Assange during a meeting with US Ambassador Caroline Kennedy in Canberra on Tuesday. The ‘Bring Julian Assange Home Parliamentary Group’ informed Washington’s chief diplomat in Australia that its citizens had expressed “widespread concern” at the continued detention in Britain of the WikiLeaks founder, who is an Australian national, as well as attempts to extradite him to the United States to face espionage charges. In 2010, Assange’s WikiLeaks platform published sensitive US government documents leaked by former US Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning. “There are a range of views about Assange in the Australian community and the members of the parliamentary group reflect that diversity of views,” the cross-party group said in a statement following the meeting with Kennedy on Tuesday.

“But what is not in dispute in the group is that Mr. Assange is being treated unjustly.” The group’s co-chair, independent MP Andrew Wilkie, added on Tuesday that the Australian parliament had also expressed “broad concern” for Assange, as outlined in statements of support last week by Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and opposition leader Peter Dutton. Albanese, in particular, was a noted critic of Assange’s detention throughout his successful election campaign in 2022. Assange is currently in London’s Belmarsh prison as he continues a legal battle to fight extradition to the United States, where he is facing espionage charges related to WikLeaks’ publication of hundreds of thousands of government documents pertaining to the Afghanistan and Iraq wars, in addition to diplomatic cables. If convicted, Assange faces a sentence of 175 years in a maximum security prison.

Washington maintains that Assange’s actions put the lives of US servicemen in danger. His supporters, however, argue that Assange is being unfairly targeted by Washington following the damaging leaks, which exposed malfeasance by US personnel during the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. In April, 48 Australian lawmakers co-signed a letter addressed to US Attorney General Merrick Garland in which they said the United States’ pursuit of “journalist and publisher” Assange “set a dangerous precedent” for press freedom. US President Joe Biden is scheduled to visit Sydney on May 24 for the Quad Leaders’ Summit, where he will meet with the leaders of Australia, India and Japan. Albanese has not said whether he intends to raise the issue with Biden during his visit.

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“Wars cannot be fought without lies because most populations reject these wars as soon as they know the truth about them..”

Why the Release of Julian Assange Is Crucial for Our Future (Scheidler)

What is Julian Assange in prison for? He is in prison for showing the truth about our wars, in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere. War and lies are very closely related. Wars cannot be fought without lies because most populations reject these wars as soon as they know the truth about them. Governments never tell the truth about their wars, because otherwise they lose the support of the population. Embedded journalists do not tell us the truth about the wars. After the disaster of the Vietnam War, various concepts have been developed to allow journalists to go to war theaters only embedded, accompanied by the respective military. We saw this in Iraq, we saw it in Afghanistan and elsewhere. Only a few journalists had the opportunity to look behind the scenes. That is why leaks, confidential sources and journalists like Julian Assange are so important.

Reporting the dirty truth about wars, no matter from which side they are waged, is crucial so that these wars can no longer be waged in the future. Let me give a few examples of this from history. In the Vietnam War, reporting by courageous journalists, often citing anonymous sources or using leaks, played a decisive role in ending the bloodshed. One of the most important steps was the story revealed by Seymour Hersh in 1969 about war crimes in My Lai, Vietnam. At that time, U.S. troops murdered hundreds of civilians, mostly women and children, in the village. This story and the images of it were instrumental in turning popular sentiment against this war. Another important revelation was the so-called Pentagon Papers, published by whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg with the help of journalists.

They showed that several U.S. governments had systematically lied to the population about the Vietnam War, about its motives, about its scale, and about its methods. It came out that not only Vietnam was bombed, but also Laos and Cambodia. An estimated three to four million people died in that war. These reports and the largely anonymous sources on which they were based were instrumental in bringing this war to an end. This was later followed by the revelations of the secret programs used by the CIA to illegally spy on U.S. citizens. These revelations, again by Seymour Hersh, led to the establishment of the so-called Church Commission in 1975 to provide parliamentary oversight of the intelligence agencies – an important step in defense of democracy. We then saw a new phase of wars with the start of the so-called war on terror after September 11. In 2004, Seymour Hersh exposed U.S. torture practices at Iraq’s Abu Ghraib prison.

Wikileaks and Julian Assange are part of this long tradition. In 2010 and 2011, based largely on information from Chelsea Manning, Wikileaks exposed a whole series of crimes committed by our governments that shocked the world. Among them was a document that showed how the CIA tried to mobilize sentiment in Germany and France for the war in Afghanistan. A headline from this document is telling: “Why it is not enough to count on the apathy of the Germans.” The point was to mobilize people for an expansion of operations in Afghanistan through manipulated information.

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Bigotry porn

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