Sep 202022
 
 September 20, 2022  Posted by at 8:55 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , ,  75 Responses »


Salvador Dali Cadaques 1923

 

Russia Is Seeking Swift End To Ukraine Conflict – Turkey (RT)
Ukraine is Not a New Afghanistan (Batiushka)
German Politician Predicts Fate Of Nord Stream 2 (RT)
< Germany Boosting Russian Imports – Trade Mission (RT)
The European Union Is About to Rupture (Malinen)
French Warned Of Winter Blackouts (RT)
Dire Winter Scenario In Sight For EU (RT)
UN Chief Supports Moscow’s Aid Proposal (RT)
The Unintended Consequences Of The EU Energy Emergency Plan (OP)
Ukraine Claims Missile Hit Area Near Nuclear Power Plant (RT)
Why the World Economic Forum’s Plutocracy Should Be Dissolved (Shurk)
Whistleblower: FBI Uses Jan. 6 Cases To Create Illusion Of National Crisis (JTN)
A Walk on the Wild Side (Kunstler)
Why So Many Cling to Covid Panic (Oshinskie)

 

 

At least hundreds of Canadians have posted their life stories with the #TrudeauMustGo hashtag. He now calls them Putin puppets. It’s hard to show less respect for your own people. Twitter is now shadowbanning the hashtag.

 

 

 

 

Devine

 

 

 

 

Veneto, the richest region in Italy.

https://twitter.com/i/status/1570650331595542528

 

 

 

 

 

 

Erdogan the peacemaker. Lovely.

Russia Is Seeking Swift End To Ukraine Conflict – Turkey (RT)

Russia’s President Vladimir Putin wants to see a swift conclusion to the conflict in Ukraine, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Monday in an interview with the PBS NewsHour program. Erdogan said he held “extensive meetings with Putin in Uzbekistan” during last week’s Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) summit. “I realized that they are actually trying to finish this as soon as possible. This situation is a big problem,” the Turkish leader said, referring to the conflict in Ukraine. Erdogan, who is in New York for the UN General Assembly, said he wants Putin and Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky to talk directly, in order to find a solution to the conflict, which has been underway since late February. “We have a persistent desire to bring these leaders together. Let’s bring them together. I want to hear everything from them. We haven’t succeeded yet, but I’m not without hope,” he stated.


The Turkish president claimed to have told both Putin and Zelensky that a negotiated end to the fighting is needed because “nobody will be winning at the end of the day.” The Kremlin earlier said the Russian and Ukrainian leaders should only meet to sign concrete agreements prepared for them by their negotiators. Turkey has maintained contacts with both Moscow and Kiev throughout the hostilities. It condemned the use of force by Russia, but at the same time refused to join the international sanctions against Moscow and continued dealing with the country. Ankara was also involved in the UN-brokered deal to allow export of grain from the Ukrainian ports, achieved between Russia and Ukraine in July. Russia recently complained that the part of the agreement, which calls for removing obstacles for shipments of its food products, remained unfulfilled by Western countries.

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“There’s an east wind coming all the same. Such a wind as never blew…. It will be cold and bitter….and a good many of us may wither before its blast. But it’s God’s own wind none the less, and a cleaner, better, stronger land will lie in the sunshine when the storm has cleared.”

– His Last Bow, Sir Arthur Conan-Doyle, October 1917

Ukraine is Not a New Afghanistan (Batiushka)

[..] we have two quite different and incomparable countries: Afghanistan at the centre [of the Eurasian Heartland] and the Ukraine on the Western margins – which is what its very name means. The Afghans live in inaccessible mountains, the Ukrainians on open steppes. The Afghans have a very strong identity, even if, like other mountain-dwellers, as in the Scottish Highlands or the Swiss Alps, they are divided into fiercely different and warring tribal clans and different languages according to the valley they live in. However, the Ukrainians in their open land are swayed one way and another, largely depending on who makes the best offer, on what way the wind blows and the tide flows.

The USA has constantly tried to chip off, occupy and control marginal pieces of Eurasia, islands like Iceland, the British Isles and Ireland, Japan, the Philippines and Taiwan, peninsulas like South Korea, South Vietnam and Western Europe. In 1975 it was humiliated and chased out of South-East Asia when Saigon was at last liberated. Other areas it occupies, like Taiwan and Korea, are under threat. In 2021, after it had dared to occupy not a marginal area, but the very centre of the Eurasian Heartland in Afghanistan, it was humiliated and chased out. It was a classic example of hubris and overreach. ‘We’re American, we can do anything’. Actually, you can’t.

Now the USA is trying to cling on to Western Europe by shoring up its literal borderland, the Ukraine. This is one of the last US attempts to keep power in Eurasia. The USA fears Eurasia, for Eurasia is much stronger than it and the USA is isolated on its big island, placed, as if for quarantine, between the Atlantic and the Pacific. One day it will reluctantly be forced to admit that Eurasia is geographically indivisible, however much it tries to divide it politically and occupy it militarily. Then it will retire to its isolation on its big island, rejected by Afro-Eurasia, Oceania and Latin America, and start doing some very serious soul-searching about its own history. It is called repentance.

The USA has been expanding eastwards across the Atlantic for over three generations now. It has controlled the UK since 1942, from where it invaded the rest of Western Europe in 1944 and invaded Central Europe since 1989, using puppet elites, making assassinations and fiddling elections. Portugal under Salazar, Spain under Franco, Italy under every possible fraudster, Greece under the Colonels, France after it deposed the Last Frenchman, De Gaulle, the UK under the Conservatives, are only examples of its manipulations. [..] Exactly a generation after taking over Central Europe in 1989, since 2014 the USA has been trying to expand into Eastern Europe. We are now at an irreversible point. History books will be written as events ‘Before 2022 and After 2022’.

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“..this cooperation is irrecoverably destroyed”. “..Stephan Weil said Berlin would never be able to trust Moscow again as a reliable energy supplier..”

But Berlin is a reliable customer?! Can you even hear yourself?

German Politician Predicts Fate Of Nord Stream 2 (RT)

The Nord Stream 2 pipeline, which was intended to pump gas from Russia to Germany, is doomed to remain idle indefinitely, the head of Germany’s Lower Saxony region has suggested. Stephan Weil said Berlin would never be able to trust Moscow again as a reliable energy supplier. In an interview with Germany’s DPA news agency published on Monday, Governor Weil said the pipeline project would not be revived even after Russian President Vladimir Putin leaves office. “The loss of trust is so fundamental that there will never again be a situation in which a German federal government can rely on energy from Russia,” the official noted. According to Weil, the “Nord Stream 2 will never go into operation.” The governor claimed that the Kremlin has burnt its bridges and that “this cooperation is irrecoverably destroyed.”

Weil concluded by proclaiming that the “West will recover from [the situation] faster than Russia.” The construction of the second leg of the existing Nord Stream pipeline began in May 2018. The project was expected to double Russian gas supplies to Germany. Despite opposition from the US and some EU member states, the German government staunchly defended the project, and the pipeline was completed. However, Berlin put its launch on hold indefinitely on February 22, after Russia recognized the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics, days before Moscow launched its offensive against Ukraine.

In July and August, Russia incrementally reduced gas supplies to Germany via Nord Stream 1, before shutting it down altogether in early September. Russia’s state-owned energy giant Gazprom cited technical issues caused by Western sanctions. Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov has made it clear that the pipeline will not resume operation until Western sanctions are lifted. sMeanwhile, Berlin has accused Russia of weaponizing gas supplies. Soaring prices coupled with the closure of the Nord Stream 1 saw the German government put in place emergency measures to ensure the country has enough energy to survive the winter. Earlier this week, President Putin suggested the West should give the green light to the Nord Stream 2 “if it’s that bad.”

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Yeah, yeah: “..this cooperation is irrecoverably destroyed”.

Germany Boosting Russian Imports – Trade Mission (RT)

The volume of German imports from Russia has risen over the first seven months of this year by 32.6% in annual terms, amounting to $27.9 billion, the Russian Trade Mission in Berlin told RIA Novosti on Monday, citing data from Germany’s federal statistical office, Destatis. According to the Russian trade representative in Germany, Andrey Sobolev, the rise in imports of fuel and energy products through July was 40.5%. Purchases of Russian gold have risen more than tenfold, while the volume of silver imports jumped by almost five times. The EU country has also boosted purchases of other metals from Russia, including copper, aluminum, and nickel.


The report also indicated that German exports to Russia decreased by 43.6% to $10.2 billion compared to the same period last year. Declining exports caused a $17.7 billion trade imbalance for Germany. The trade representative explained that, despite the general decline in exports to Russia, “there was an increase in supplies from Germany of pharmaceutical products, seeds and fruits.” Russia accounted for 2.3% of total German foreign trade and was the fourth most important country for German goods outside of the EU in 2021. In April, US analytics firm S&P Global warned of a possible financial shock if there’s a “trade rupture” between the two countries.

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It has become a prison.

The European Union Is About to Rupture (Malinen)

The functioning of the EU has, until recently, been built on two political pillars that now appear to be crumbling. Primarily, German growth has made possible the joint financing (through low-cost debt, the EU budget, and the central banks’ clearing system) of unsuccessful economies without the EU forcing them to commit to politically unacceptable reforms. Beneficent global developments have made possible the concentration on economic integration while going slow on the much more contentious integration of cultural, social, and foreign policies. The deterioration of the global economy, together with EU policies, now threaten industry and living standards in EU member states, reduce the scope of joint economic support, and force member states to rapidly evaluate their readiness for possibly radical reductions in their political self-determination.

This is most evident in Italy. The yields of Italian sovereign debt have reached levels that can be considered unsustainable, given the country’s high indebtedness and low rate of economic growth. For example, the yield of the Italian 10-year bond breached the 4 percent line late this past week. The maturity structure of Italian debt is also rather unfavorable. At the end of June, for example, Italy had issued only 52 percent of its needs for external financing in 2022. In addition, 35 percent of her outstanding debt will come due already in 2024. Half of her total debt will come due within five years. Without active country-specific support from the ECB, which the newly introduced Transmission Protection Instrument is designed to facilitate, Italian debt is unsustainable at current yields.

Disagreements among member states on the wisdom of filling the ECB with Italian bonds is bound to weaken the glue keeping the EU together as before. The energy crisis is also sowing seeds of serious inner conflict. The politics in the EU are becoming less forgiving as difficulties mount. Both Hungary and the Czech Republic have objected to the plans for a price cap of Russian gas, which now looks unlikely to be enforced. The European Commission is also planning to cut funding for the Hungarian government of Victor Orban due to “rule-of-law concerns.” This is unlikely to increase the incentives of Hungary to stay in the union. More generally, as funding is made conditional on countries meeting the test of adhering to “European values,” one can expect the list of such essentially political requirements to grow as economic conditions worsen and demands for uniform policies grow.

For example, Poland is fed up with constant extra demands from the EU, like the demand to walk back from the changes Polish government was planning to the judicial system, considering the distribution of funds from the Recovery Fund to its government. Krzysztof Sobolewski, the governing party’s secretary-general, has warned that without a clear change in the actions of Brussels, “We will have no choice but to pull out all the cannons in our arsenal and open fire.” Since a number of contentious decisions still require unanimity, such a threat might be unwise to take lightly. [..] Reports state that Russia is preparing a first shipment from its new liquefied natural gas plant to Greece. Hungary, as an outlier, is buying additional gas from Russia in accordance with their new agreement. It will be interesting to see what Germany may choose to do if the impact of energy scarcity on its economy and population is as large as some reports suggest.


CPI lags PPI: “German Consumer Prices (CPI) are likely to rise further after Producer Prices (PPI) increased by almost 46% in August, the strongest increase since 1949.”

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“We thought that we could gradually replace nuclear energy with renewable energy sources, but now we understand that we will need more energy. We need both sources..”

French Warned Of Winter Blackouts (RT)

Private households in France may face power outages this winter in the event of severe frosts, the head of the energy regulator CRE, Emmanuelle Wargon, told France Info radio on Monday. “Under no circumstances will there be gas shutdowns in private homes. But on the electrical side, we may be faced with having to make difficult decisions about limited shutdowns,” she said, adding “These can last for several hours and will be very local – at the commune or district level – with prior notification to citizens.” The regulator noted that shutdowns would not affect critical infrastructure, including hospitals. Extreme measures could be avoided if the winter is relatively warm, she added.


Wargon also admitted that the decision to close the Fessenheim nuclear power plant, decommissioned in 2020, “could not have been taken in the current crisis.” “We thought that we could gradually replace nuclear energy with renewable energy sources, but now we understand that we will need more energy. We need both sources,” she stressed. France relies on nuclear energy more than any other European country, generating about 70% of its electricity that way. However, about half of its 56 nuclear reactors have been shut down for maintenance, notably to repair corrosion problems.

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“..70% of nitrogen fertilizer production capacities in the EU have already been stopped, aluminum production has been reduced by 25%, and steel production by 5%.”

Dire Winter Scenario In Sight For EU (RT)

Reducing dependence on Russian natural gas supply is impossible for the European Union in the coming year without a massive production halt, RBK business daily reported on Monday, citing a study by McKinsey’s former Russian division, consulting company Yakov & Partners. Their research showed that, despite reports that EU stores are full, the bloc has not yet overcome its reliance on Russian energy and will not be able to get through the coming winter and next year “without maintaining gas supplies from Russia or a [effecting] significant reduction” in consumption.

The report outlined that, in order to meet their needs until the end of 2022, European countries will either have to maintain imports from Russia or reduce gas consumption by an additional seven to 12 billion cubic meters, “which is possible only with a complete or partial shutdown of a number of industries.” The deficit may grow to 20-30 billion cubic meters if China’s demand for LNG recovers or if the winter is cold and long, or in the event of disruptions in supply chains, it adds. Yakov & Partners indicated that 70% of nitrogen fertilizer production capacities in the EU have already been stopped, aluminum production has been reduced by 25%, and steel production by 5%. The authors of the study suggested that the decline in production is likely to continue “even in the event of a mild winter.”

“In the perspective of 2023, the rejection of Russian gas means a deficit of 40-60 billion cubic meters for European countries even while maintaining the current rate of gas savings for the whole of 2023,” said Elena Kuznetsova, a partner at the company. She explained that 60 billion cubic meters of gas is comparable to the annual gas consumption of France and Poland combined, or the total annual gas consumption of such industries as fertilizer production, petrochemistry, ferrous and non-ferrous metallurgy, and all engineering. Stopping these industries will further affect other related industries, from agriculture to services, Kuznetsova warned.

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Guterres is doing some good work.

UN Chief Supports Moscow’s Aid Proposal (RT)

The UN chief has pledged to help Russia donate some 300 tons of fertilizers stranded in European ports to developing nations. “If Russia wants to provide fertilizers free of charge to developing countries, I believe the World Food Programme will be able to implement that desire,” Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said in an interview with the Russian news agency RIA Novosti, which was published on Monday. He acknowledged that EU nations will first have to be convinced to allow free the export of Russian fertilizers through their ports. The offer to donate an estimated 300 tons of Russian fertilizer, unable to leave EU ports due to anti-Russian sanctions, came last Friday from Russian President Vladimir Putin.

In late July, the UN co-mediated an arrangement with Ukraine and Russia, which allowed the resumption of Ukrainian grain exports through the Black Sea. As part of the deal, the organization pledged to help ease Western restrictions on international trade that Russia says prevent it from exporting its food products and fertilizers. “This week I had an intensive series of contacts with the leaders of the EU. And I hope there will be a positive change with regard to the possibility of distributing Russian grain and fertilizers without obstacles through Europe to other markets,” Guterres told RIA Novosti in another part of the interview, which was published on Saturday.

Putin previously criticized the grain deal, saying that while it was touted as a way to help poor countries deal with surging global food prices, in practice Ukrainian exports mostly went to rich EU nations. The abundance of grain and other food products from Ukraine on European markets has apparently angered local producers, who are struggling to compete with the cheaper imports, the Wall Street Journal reported last week. The EU previously had quotas and steep tariffs for Ukraine trade, protecting its own farmers and forcing Ukrainians to export most of their produce to other places. But the restrictions were lifted after Russia attacked the country in February, and European governments rushed to support Kiev with various forms of assistance.

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“..the last three years included two pandemic years when a lot of companies in the oil and gas industries struggled to stay afloat, let alone post a profit..”

The Unintended Consequences Of The EU Energy Emergency Plan (OP)

This week saw the European Commission’s President Ursula von der Leyen do something that would have probably been considered the opposite of democracy just a few years ago. She proposed that governments impose a ceiling on certain energy producers’ revenues and add a windfall profit for Big Oil majors. Called “a solidarity contribution” or “a crisis contribution,” the windfall tax’s aim is the same as the aim of the revenue ceiling: manage energy costs in a runaway inflation environment and get some additional money to, according to the plan, distribute among those who most need it. Like all grand plans, however, unintended consequences abound with this one, and one of the gravest is the discouragement of oil and gas investments at a time when global oil and gas investments are already lower than they should be in light of demand projections.

JP Morgan’s head of global energy strategy said it this week in an interview with Bloomberg. “If you’re planning your capital budget, you have to think twice now that you have a new risk,” Malek told Bloomberg. “It encourages majors to return cash to shareholders as they use that free cashflow that could have been used in investment.” Per plans, the EU seeks to “raise” some $140 billion from windfall taxes on non-gas electricity generators and oil gas, and coal companies for their “extraordinary record profits benefiting from war and on the back of consumers,” to quote Von der Leyen. Reaction from the industry was swift. Austria’s OMV said the consequences of such measures could be huge, adding that it was unfair to base the windfall levy proposal on oil companies’ profits from the last three years since these were not normal times, Reuters reported, quoting CEO Alfred Stern.

“We will keep an eye on that, as it can already have a massive impact,” Stern told media, noting, however, that the exact impact was difficult to glean because the proposal has yet to be fleshed out. Per von der Leyen’s State of the Union speech, in which she listed the windfall tax among measures to cope with the energy crisis, the idea is to tax oil and gas companies with 33 percent of any current-year profits that were 20 percent above the company’s average earnings for the last three years. OMV’s Stern noted that the last three years included two pandemic years when a lot of companies in the oil and gas industries struggled to stay afloat, let alone post a profit, with oil prices falling as low as $25 per barrel.

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Different plant, same tactics.

Ukraine Claims Missile Hit Area Near Nuclear Power Plant (RT)

A missile has hit a location in Ukraine’s Nikolaev Region close to the South Ukraine nuclear power plant, President Vladimir Zelensky has claimed. The incident happened early on Monday morning, according to the president. The projectile landed some 300 meters from the facility, causing damage to windows and briefly disrupting power supplies to the grid, he wrote on social media. Zelensky posted surveillance footage purportedly showing the strike. The video shows a powerful explosion against the backdrop of the night skyline and was apparently filmed by a malfunctioning digital camera. The frames appear to be out of order, and the timestamps go back and forth. The president’s post also included photos of broken windows, presumably caused by the blast.


Zelensky accused Russia of “endangering the world” and said it should be “stopped, before it is too late”. The South Ukraine nuclear power plant is located near the city of Yuzhnoukrainsk, deep inside Ukraine-controlled territory in the south of the country. The facility has been operating since 1982 and has three VVER-1000 reactors. Zelensky’s accusations against Russia add to a long list of nuclear-related allegations. Kiev and Moscow have for weeks been pointing the finger at each other over attacks on the Russian-controlled city of Energodar, which hosts the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant. Inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) visited the facility earlier this month, confirming damage caused by multiple shelling incidents, but declining to attribute them to either side.

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100 years ago, the battle was for sharing the surplus. Now, it is for sharing the lack of it.

Why the World Economic Forum’s Plutocracy Should Be Dissolved (Shurk)

Klaus Schwab, the founder and executive chairman of the World Economic Forum, appeared with David Gergen in 2017 at Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government and openly boasted of his influence over many national leaders: “I have to say when I mention names like Mrs. Merkel, even Vladimir Putin and so on, they have all been Young Global Leaders of the World Economic Forum, but what we are really proud of now is the young generation like Prime Minister Trudeau, the President of Argentina and so on. So we penetrate the cabinets. So yesterday I was at a reception for Prime Minister Trudeau, and I know that half of his cabinet or even more are Young Global Leaders of the World Economic Forum…. It is true in Argentina and it is true in France now….”

When the chairman of an international economic body publicly brags about his leverage over the leaders of sovereign nation states, he can hardly be mistaken as defending the merits of “democracy.” In a somewhat farcical display of the World Economic Forum’s control over individual nations, it has become eerily commonplace these last two years to hear the leaders of the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and the United States all parroting the same “Build Back Better” slogan propagated by Klaus Schwab’s economic club. With wealth and political power bonded densely into such haut monde cabals, the insular prerogatives of the WEF have succeeded in dominating government policies throughout the West.

Both in their immediate handling of the COVID-19 pandemic and their planned response to the harsh economic repercussions dovetailing from prolonged lockdowns, Western nation states have taken many of their cues directly from the World Economic Forum’s policy edicts. Whatever vestige of “democracy” still casts a shadow across North America, Europe, and the South Pacific, it has become unmistakable that plutocracy — rule by a wealthy elite — is fast assuming total control over the West’s future. Notably, today’s plutocrats have little interest in truly free markets. Unlike J.D. Rockefeller, Andrew Carnegie, J.P. Morgan, and other late-nineteenth-century industrialists and business magnates who made their fortunes in the heyday of economic growth before the massive expansion of the regulatory State, those with great wealth today often champion government intervention in markets.

The World Economic Forum, for instance, demands governments take urgent action to combat or address climate change, cybersecurity, online misinformation, artificial intelligence, overpopulation, the use of hydrocarbon energy, farm ownership, food supplies, the elimination of private vehicle ownership, and the imposition of citizen-control protocols to defend against future pandemics. Regulation of people and markets is now of paramount importance to those with wealth and power.

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“manipulative case-file practice”

Whistleblower: FBI Uses Jan. 6 Cases To Create Illusion Of National Crisis (JTN)

The top Republican on the House Judiciary Committee said Monday a whistleblower has come forward detailing how the FBI is manipulating cases related to the Jan. 6 Capitol riot to create “the illusion” that domestic violent extremism is a widespread problem in the United States. Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) said in a letter to FBI Director Christopher Wray that the “manipulative case-file practice” was being conducted by the bureau’s Washington field office, which was instructing local FBI offices to open up cases on their books that were in fact simply related to the Capitol breach. “The FBI’s case categorization creates the illusion that threats from DVE are present in jurisdictions across the nation, when in reality they all stem from the same related investigation concerning the actions at the Capitol on January 6,” Jordan wrote.

“Such an artificial case categorization scheme allows FBI leadership to misleadingly point to ‘significant’ increases in DVE threats nationwide,” he added. The Republican lawmaker said the whistleblower’s description is “consistent with disclosures we have received from other whistleblowers that high-ranking FBI officials — including a senior WFO official — are pressing front-line agents to categorize cases as DVE matters to fit a political narrative.” The activity comes as President Joe Biden and his team try to make the case that supporters of Donald Trump are creating a crisis of extremism in the United States, a case he made in a widely panned speech in Pennsylvania a few weeks ago.

Jordan said the FBI’s shifted focus is coming at the expense of other crimes, including the investigation of child sex exploitation. “The whistleblower disclosed that the FBI is sacrificing its other important federal law-enforcement duties to pursue January 6 investigations,” Jordan wrote. “The whistleblower recalled, for example, being told that child sexual abuse material investigations were no longer an FBI priority and should be referred to local law enforcement agencies.

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“Ultimately, the Left will choke to death on its many crimes and we can return to being a people who confidently know the difference between right and wrong.”

A Walk on the Wild Side (Kunstler)

What is the answer when faced with a large-scale religious disturbance in society, especially one displaying all the earmarks of overt, archetypal evil? You call in an exorcist. That has been Donald Trump’s true role in this millenarian mega-crisis. He is seeking to cast out evil spirits afflicting this sore-beset national community and the evil spirits are frantic to stop his ministrations by any means. He is, of course, a most untoward avatar in this war of good against evil. He came out of the infernal circle of New York real estate development. The assumption all along is that he must be tainted by dirty dealing with the mobs who ran the construction unions, but after six years of relentless investigation by the Southern District of New York and the Manhattan District Attorney’s office, the legions of hell came up with… nothing.

How was this possible? Well, they tried their darndest, and now they’re trying again with some double-jeopardy maneuvers. The law, to these degenerates, is just an instrument of their own will-to-power. Chugging toward the 2022 mid-term elections, Mr. Trump is out there giving moral support and focus to so-called “domestic terrorists” seeking to crush the Woke demonic religious persecution. He leads the substantial demographic of Americans who are determined to not play along with Woke absurdities, and they love him for it. Mr. Trump may or may not be the Republican nominee in 2024, but he is helping the country with a literal House-cleaning in advance of that, and it will open the door to a deluge of corrective truth-telling about what has gone on the past several years, in everything from the Covid 19 scam to the Green New Deal aimed at wrecking what’s left of Western Civ’s economies.

Americans, except for the very old, are not disposed to attending church, meaning they are not reminded at regular intervals, and formal rituals, that good and evil exists in all of us, and that we have a duty to our sacred consciousness to tend to the right side, to “the better angels of our nature,” Lincoln put it. Ultimately, the Left will choke to death on its many crimes and we can return to being a people who confidently know the difference between right and wrong.

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For the same reason they cling to believing in Santa.

Why So Many Cling to Covid Panic (Oshinskie)

The government and media have spent the past 30 months disingenuously building Corona fear and implementing a range of talismanic measures like lockdowns, school closures, masks, tests and shots to convince us that they were magically—yet always “Scientifically!—” protecting us all from death. Just as any thinking six-year-old figures out that Santa simply can’t put all of that toy freight into one sleigh, any thinking adult should have known that none of the hoary Corona crew: neither the elfin Fauci’s, Birx’s nor Biden’s rhetoric or theater made any sense, either in theory or in real-life outcomes; nor did similar alarmism or interventions by younger, hipper “liberal” governors, mayors and prime ministers. But just like my parents’ efforts to preserve the Santa myth, governments won’t let go of the Corona theater—especially the shots—and the media desperately continues to portray as experts those who “masterminded” the mitigation.


All of the empirical data have corroborated what was known on Day 1 of the lockdowns—namely that this virus threatens almost no one but the very old and infirm, that none of these interventions works and that each of these have caused–and will continue to cause–widespread, terrible secondary and tertiary damage. Instead of admitting this, governments and media persist in their campaign of terror, lies and bogus zero-Covid measures. Because to stop lying now would be to admit that it’s all been a delusion. And politically and morally, they can’t bring themselves to do that. A five-year-old might not know a scam when they see it. But even a ten-year-old does. Or at least should. They’re counting on adults to be like five-year-olds. It might work.

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Biden 8.3

 

 

Stop calling it clean energy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

Aug 252022
 


Felix Vallotton On the beach 1899

 

Geopolitical Tectonic Plates Shifting, Six Months On (Escobar)
Putin Bets Winter Gas Chokehold Will Yield Ukraine Peace – On His Terms (R.)
Nord Stream 2 ‘Only Sensible’ Solution To Gas Crisis – German MP
Belgian PM: “Next 5-10 Winters Will Be Difficult” As Energy Crisis Worsens (ZH)
Exploding Prices Will Impact Trade Balance More Than 1970s Oil Shocks (K.)
The Electricity Subsidy Shock (K.)
‘Weary’ Europeans Must ‘Bear Consequences’ Of Ukraine War: EU’s Borrell (ZH)
Macron Warns Of ‘End Of Abundance’ (RT)
‘Months Or Years’ Before US Arms Reach Ukraine – Media (RT)
FBI Mar-a-Lago Warrant Had ‘No Legal Basis’: Constitutional Lawyers (ET)
Biden White House Facilitated FBI Mar-A-Lago Raid (JTN)
FBI Brass Warned Agents Off Hunter Biden Laptop Due To 2020 Election (NYP)
DeSantis Says ‘Little Elf’ Fauci Should Be ‘Chucked Across The Potomac’ (RT)

 

 

Biden’s student debt cancellation plan, estimated at $300-$400 billion, has nothing for those who didn’t want that kind of debt. Or for those who did, and worked 2-3 jobs to pay it off ASAP. Or anyone else who’s in dire straits. But the colleges are sure sitting pretty.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Glenn Beck

 

 


Slaughterhouse. Günther, where’s your mask? Mr. Butcher, Günther’s not wearing a mask!

 

 

 

 

 

 

“The advances along the enormous 1,800-mile front are relentless, highly systematic and inserted in a Greater Strategic Picture.”

Geopolitical Tectonic Plates Shifting, Six Months On (Escobar)

Russia broke the spell. But Moscow’s strategy is way more sophisticated than leveling Kiev with hypersonic business cards, something that could have been done at any moment starting six months ago, in a flash. What Moscow is doing is talking to virtually the whole Global South, bilaterally or to groups of actors, explaining how the world-system is changing right before our eyes, with the key actors of the future configured as BRI, SCO, EAEU, BRICS+, the Greater Eurasia Partnership. And what we see is vast swathes of the Global South – or 85% of the world’s population – slowly but surely becoming ready to engage in expelling the FIRE Mafia from their national horizons, and ultimately taking them down: a long, tortuous battle that will imply multiple setbacks.

On the ground in soon-to-be rump Ukraine, Khinzal hypersonic business cards – launched from Tu-22M3 bombers or Mig-31 interceptors – will continue to be distributed. Piles of HIMARS will continue to be captured. TOS 1A Heavy Flamethrowers will keep sending invitations to the Gates of Hell. Crimean Air Defense will continue to intercept all sorts of small drones with IEDs attached: terrorism by local SBU cells, which will be eventually smashed. Using essentially a phenomenal artillery barrage – cheap and mass-produced – Russia will annex the full, very valuable Donbass, in terms of land, natural resources and industrial power. And then on to Nikolaev, Odessa, and Kharkov.

Geoeconomically, Russia can afford to sell its oil with fat discounts to any Global South customer, not to mention strategic partners China and India. Cost of extraction reaches a maximum of $15 per barrel, with a national budget based on $40-45 for a barrel of Urals. A new Russian benchmark is imminent, as well as oil in rubles following the wildly successful gas for rubles. The assassination of Darya Dugina provoked endless speculation on the Kremlin and the Ministry of Defense finally breaking their discipline. That’s not going to happen. The advances along the enormous 1,800-mile front are relentless, highly systematic and inserted in a Greater Strategic Picture.

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What happens when you get it all backwards.

Putin Bets Winter Gas Chokehold Will Yield Ukraine Peace – On His Terms (R.)

Cold winters helped Moscow defeat Napoleon and Hitler. President Vladimir Putin is now betting that sky-rocketing energy prices and possible shortages this winter will persuade Europe to strong arm Ukraine into a truce — on Russia’s terms. That, say two Russian sources familiar with Kremlin thinking, is the only path to peace that Moscow sees, given Kyiv says it will not negotiate until Russia leaves all of Ukraine “We have time, we can wait,” said one source close to the Russian authorities, who declined to be named because they are not authorised to speak to the media. “It’s going to be a difficult winter for Europeans. We could see protests, unrest. Some European leaders might think twice about continuing to support Ukraine and think it’s time for a deal.”

A second source close to the Kremlin said Moscow thought it could already detect faltering European unity and expected that process to accelerate amid winter hardship. “It will be really tough if it (the war) drags into the autumn and winter. So there’s hope they (the Ukrainians) will ask for peace,” said the source. There was no immediate response from the Kremlin, which denies Russia uses energy as a political weapon, to a request for comment. Ukraine and its staunchest Western backers say they have no plans to fold and U.S. officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, say they so far see no signs of support for Ukraine wavering. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, in a tweet to Ukrainians on their national day, said: “The EU has been with you in this fight from the very beginning. And we will be for as long as it takes.”

Backed by billions in U.S. and other Western military aid, training and shared intelligence, and with a series of morale-boosting attacks on high-profile Russian targets behind it, Kyiv thinks it has a chance of changing the facts on the ground.”In order for negotiations with Russia to become possible, it is necessary to change the status quo at the front in favour of the Armed Forces of Ukraine,” Mykhailo Podolyak, a Ukrainian presidential adviser, told Reuters. “It is necessary that the Russian army suffer significant tactical defeats.” Ukrainian forces thwarted Russian attempts to capture the capital Kyiv and the second city Kharkiv; have regularly destroyed and disrupted Russian supply lines, and sank the Moskva, the flagship of Russia’s Black Sea Fleet, as well as inflicting major damage on a Russian air base in annexed Crimea.

Kyiv has also long been talking about a major counter-offensive to retake the south, though Russia has been busy building up its own forces there, and it’s unclear if and when that will materialise. The geopolitical standoff has sent energy prices to record highs. The European Union banned Russian coal and approved a partial ban on Russian crude oil imports to punish Moscow for the “special military operation” it launched exactly six months ago on Feb. 24. And Russia struck its own blow, sharply cutting gas exports to Europe. European governments have sought to increase resilience to energy pressures this winter by seeking alternative supplies and pushing through energy saving measures, but few energy specialists believe they will be able to cover all their needs.

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There are even people who want to see it dismantled.

Nord Stream 2 ‘Only Sensible’ Solution To Gas Crisis – German MP

The launch of Russia’s Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline could help solve the growing energy crisis in Europe, Bundestag MP Steffen Kotre told the TASS news agency on Wednesday. “Even if the gas storage facilities are full, there will be enough for about three months this winter. And then what? Ideology has to give way to a real fact-oriented policy… The only sensible solution is to launch Nord Stream 2,” Kotre, who is a member of the German parliamentary committee on energy and climate protection, believes. In recent weeks the German government has insisted that there are no plans to launch the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, which was completed last year but never went into operation due to Berlin’s reluctance to grant it certification.


However, many politicians have been urging the Bundestag to change its stance and make use of the pipeline, which has an annual capacity of 55 billion cubic meters, to help Germany cope with energy shortages stemming from reduced gas flows from Russia via the Nord Stream 1 pipeline. Supply through the pipeline recently dropped to 20% of total capacity due to technical setbacks and sanctions.

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2032.

Belgian PM: “Next 5-10 Winters Will Be Difficult” As Energy Crisis Worsens (ZH)

Belgian Prime Minister Alexander De Croo might have spilled the beans about the duration of Europe’s energy crisis. He told reporters Monday, “the next 5 to 10 winters will be difficult.” “The development of the situation is very difficult throughout Europe,” De Croo told Belgium broadcaster VRT. “In a number of sectors, it is really difficult to deal with those high energy prices. We are monitoring this closely, but we must be transparent: the coming months will be difficult, the coming winters will be difficult,” he said. The prime minister’s comments suggest replacing Russian natural gas imports could take years, exerting further economic doom on the region’s economy in the form of energy hyperinflation.


Europe faces a historic energy crisis exacerbated by Russia’s war in Ukraine (and Western sanctions that have backfired). The continent heavily relies on Russia for its energy needs, importing about 40% of NatGas. At just 20% capacity with risks of going to zero next month, Russian supplies via Gazprom’s Nord Stream 1 have sent NatGas and power prices to record highs this week. European NatGas prices soared to a record high of 277 euros per megawatt-hour on Monday, about 15 times the average summertime price. Leon Izbicki, a commodity analyst at Energy Aspects Ltd., told Bloomberg if NS1 flows come to a halt in September, prices could rise to 400 euros per megawatt-hour.

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Hollowing out.

Exploding Prices Will Impact Trade Balance More Than 1970s Oil Shocks (K.)

The impact of high natural gas prices on Greece’s trade balance will be more severe than the 1974 and 1979 oil shocks and the trade deficit will grow by at least 4.3% of GDP, making Greece one of the most vulnerable European Union countries, according to a study by London-based research firm Capital Economics.Other EU members will also be heavily impacted, says the report, noting that both oil shocks in the 1970s were followed by a recession. National gas futures (also known as TTF for Title Transfer Facility) in Europe have skyrocketed from 20 euros per megawatt-hour before the Covid-19 pandemic to €280/MWh currently, a 14-fold increase. By comparison, the price of Brent crude oil tripled during the first oil shock and doubled during the second.

To determine the size of the natural gas shock on each country’s trade balance, the research firm took account of the fuel mix – oil and gas – used by the countries under study and the fact that some are producers, not importers, of one and/or the other. It also based its scenario on an average gas price of €200/MWh for 2022. The research focused on seven eurozone countries – Austria, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, the Netherlands and Spain – adding Canada, the UK and the US. It concludes that Greece and Italy will face the steepest impact on their trade balances, much bigger than during the two oil shocks. Among the countries under study, the impact of the oil shocks on trade balance ranged from 1.6%-2.8% of GDP.

The impact of the rising gas prices will range from 1.9% in France to 4.4% in Italy, putting Greece in second place among the most vulnerable economies. Only France and the Netherlands will manage to contain the damage at levels better than during the 1970s, and that’s assuming the study’s gas price estimate is correct. The first oil shock had increased Greece’s trade deficit by almost 2% of GDP and the second by 2.5%. Capital Economics warns that the final impact could be even higher, as gas price rises have exceeded all assumptions. At present levels, and assuming no further rise, the impact would be 25% higher.

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So as the trade balance worsens, subsidies soar. Sounds like a long term plan.

The Electricity Subsidy Shock (K.)

A significant rise in the price of electricity announced by state-controlled Public Power Corporation (PPC) for September forced the government to raise its electricity subsidy for September to 1.9 billion euros, from €1.1 billion in August. The subsidy level inevitably follows the PPC’s pricing policy, since it is the dominant player in the market, with 63% of consumers choosing it. While PPC had the lowest price of all electricity providers in August (€0.48 per kilowatt-hour) it raised its September price to €0.788 for those consuming up to 500kWh per month and €0.80 for heavier consumers. In order to stick to its commitment for an actual charge to consumers between €0.14-0.17 per kWh the government had to adjust its subsidy level accordingly, raising it by over 72%.

A positive effect of this policy is that, for some lucky consumers, bills this month may come very low, even negative, just for the power consumption part, before other charges are factored in. Critics of the government’s calculation of the subsidy say that it puts a heavy burden on the budget and, therefore, on taxpayers, gives a wrong impression to consumers about the real cost of electricity and does not provide enough of an incentive to providers to cut prices or, at least, contain them. Among the consumers set to benefit the most are those who signed up with electricity provided Heron’s generous pricing program. At €0.75 per kilowatt-hour, it also provides, like some of its competitors, a 20% discount to those who pay their bills on time, thus lowering for them the price to €0.60/kWh.

When the state subsidy kicks in, customers will pay just €0.111/kWh and the really good payers will be charged a negative rate (-€0.039/kWh). The discount will be credited in the bill after the one in September.After deducting the subsidy, customers of provider Fysiko Aerio will pay €0.04/kWh and half that if they pay on time. Elpedison’s rate falls to €0.044/kWh, Zenith’s to €0.048/kWh, Elin’s to €0.06 and NRG’s to €0.109. PPC, as we have mentioned, has the highest net rate, at €0.149 and €0.161 for heavy consumers, followed by Watt+Volt (€0.145) and Protergia (€0.131).

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Marie Antoinette.

‘Weary’ Europeans Must ‘Bear Consequences’ Of Ukraine War: EU’s Borrell (ZH)

EU high representative and foreign policy chief Josep Borrell gave a surprisingly blunt assessment of the Ukraine war and Europe’s precarious position in an AFP interview published Tuesday, admitting that Russian President Vladimir Putin is betting on fracturing a united EU response amid the current crisis situation of soaring prices and energy extreme uncertainty headed into a long winter. Borrell’s words seemed to come close to admitting that Putin’s tactic is working on some level, or at least will indeed chip away at European resolve in the short and long run, given he chose words like EU populations having to “endure” the deep economic pain and severe energy crunch. He cited the “weariness” of Europeans while calling on leadership as well as the common people to “bear the consequences” with continued resolve.

Borrell explained to AFP that Putin sees “the weariness of the Europeans and the reluctance of their citizens to bear the consequences of support for Ukraine.” But Borrell suggested that Europe will not back down no matter the leverage Moscow might have, particularly when it comes to ‘weaponization of energy’ – and called on citizens to continue to shoulder the cost. Who will blink first? …appears to be the subtext here. He urged: “We will have to endure, spread the costs within the EU,” Borrell told AFP, warning that keeping the 27 member states together was a task to be carried out “day by day.”

And yet, as some like Hungary’s Viktor Orbán have consistently argued since near the start of the Feb.24 invasion, it is inevitable that some will be forced to bear the “costs” much more than others. Already this is being seen with initiatives out of Brussels like rationing gas consumption, which has further led to scenarios like German towns and even residences being mandated to switch off lights or resources for designated periods at night. “More cold showers” – many are also being told. As we round the corner of fall and enter the more frigid months, we are likely to only see more headlines like this: “German cities impose cold showers and turn off lights amid Russian gas crisis.”

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“..avoid “demagogy..”

Macron Warns Of ‘End Of Abundance’ (RT)

France is headed toward the “end of abundance” and “sacrifices” have to be made during what is a time of great upheaval, President Emmanuel Macron told his cabinet on Wednesday upon returning from summer break. The country has faced multiple challenges lately, ranging from the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine to the unprecedented drought that has battered the whole European continent this summer. Yet, Macron believes that the crisis is actually of a much bigger scale and that structural changes are imminent.“Some could see our destiny as being to constantly manage crises or emergencies. I believe that we are living through a tipping point or great upheaval. Firstly, because we are living through… what could seem like the end of abundance,” he said.


The country and its citizens must be ready to make “sacrifices” to meet and overcome the challenges they are facing, he continued. “Our system based on freedom in which we have become used to living, when we need to defend it sometimes that can entail making sacrifices,”Macron added. “Faced with this, we have duties, the first of which is to speak frankly and very clearly without doom-mongering,” Macron stressed. The president called upon his cabinet to show unity, be “serious” and “credible” and urged ministers to avoid “demagogy.” “It’s easy to promise anything and everything, sometimes to say anything and everything. Do not give in to these temptations, it is demagoguery,” the president said, adding that such an approach “flourishes” today “in all democracies in a complex and frightening world.”

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“Washington expects Ukrainian forces “to fight for years to come..”

Timeline is eerily similar to the energy crisis one.

How many Ukrainians will be left when they’re done?

‘Months Or Years’ Before US Arms Reach Ukraine – Media (RT)

Years could pass before some of the weapons in the upcoming “largest ever” package of US military assistance to Kiev actually reach Ukraine, according to Western media reports. On Tuesday, a number of mainstream media outlets cited anonymous US officials as describing the impending announcement of a $3 billion package of military aid to Ukraine. If confirmed, it would be the largest of its kind so far. Washington is by far the biggest supplier of military hardware to Ukraine as it fights against Russia. However, some of the promised equipment “will not be in the hands of Ukrainian fighters for months or years,” according to NBC News, one of the outlets that reported the upcoming package. Included in the package are advanced weapons that are still in the development phase, it explained.


The same caveat was cited by the Associated Press, which said that it may take “a year or two” for the arms to reach the battlefield, according to its sources. Washington expects Ukrainian forces “to fight for years to come,” US officials told the AP. The AeroVironment Switchblade 600 drone is an example of a weapon system that was promised to Ukraine months ago but has yet to be delivered. Defense News said this week that the Pentagon plans to sign the contract necessary for sending 10 of the so-called “kamikaze drones” within a month. Last month, Ukrainian Defense Minister Aleksey Reznikov called on foreign suppliers of arms to use his country as a testing ground for new weapons. He pledged to provide detailed reports about the experiences of Ukrainian soldiers with the prototypes provided to them.

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“Thank you. You did not need to show us the storage room, but we appreciate it. Now it all makes sense..”

FBI Mar-a-Lago Warrant Had ‘No Legal Basis’: Constitutional Lawyers (ET)

Two constitutional lawyers who worked in the Bush and Reagan administrations say that the warrant used to search former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence had no legal basis. A former president’s right under the Presidential Records Act supersedes the statutes the Department of Justice and FBI used to carry out the raid earlier this month, wrote David Rivkin Jr. and Lee Casey, who both served under Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H. W. Bush. “The judge who issued the warrant for Mar-a-Lago has signaled that he is likely to release a redacted version of the affidavit supporting it. But the warrant itself suggests the answer is likely no—the FBI had no legally valid cause for the raid,” they wrote in the Wall Street Journal on Tuesday.

Earlier this month, federal Magistrate Judge Bruce Reinhart unsealed the warrant and property receipt, showing that it allowed FBI agents to obtain all “physical documents and records constituting evidence, contraband, fruits of crime, or other items illegally possessed in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§793, 2071, or 1519.” And the materials that could be seized are “any government and/or Presidential Records created between January 20, 2017, and January 20, 2021,” which encompasses all of Trump’s presidential term. As a result, the two scholars said that “virtually all the materials at Mar-a-Lago are likely to fall within this category” but “federal law gives Mr. Trump a right of access to them.”

“His possession of them is entirely consistent with that right, and therefore lawful, regardless of the statutes the FBI cites in its warrant,” Rivkin and Casey wrote. “Those statutes are general in their text and application. But Mr. Trump’s documents are covered by a specific statute, the Presidential Records Act of 1978,” they said, adding that a Supreme Court decision in 1974 affirms their argument. “The former president’s rights under the [Presidential Records Act] trump any application of the laws the FBI warrant cites.”

[..] The former president, in a legal complaint filed earlier this week, wrote that agents visited his home in early June—about two months before the raid—and appeared to approve the installation of another lock. After one FBI agent saw the storage room, they told Trump’s team: “Thank you. You did not need to show us the storage room, but we appreciate it. Now it all makes sense,” according to the filing. “Counsel for President Trump then closed the interaction and advised the Government officials that they should contact him with any further needs on the matter,” it added.

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“Joe Biden would not object to waiving his predecessor’s claims to executive privilege..”

Unbelievable.

Biden White House Facilitated FBI Mar-A-Lago Raid (JTN)

Long before it professed no prior knowledge of the raid on Donald Trump’s estate, the Biden White House worked directly with the Justice Department and National Archives to instigate the criminal probe into alleged mishandling of documents, allowing the FBI to review evidence retrieved from Mar-a-Lago this spring and eliminating the 45th president’s claims to executive privilege, according to contemporaneous government documents reviewed by Just the News. The memos show then-White House Deputy Counsel Jonathan Su was engaged in conversations with the FBI, DOJ and National Archives as early as April, shortly after 15 boxes of classified and other materials were voluntarily returned to the federal historical agency from Trump’s Florida home.

By May, Su conveyed to the Archives that President Joe Biden would not object to waiving his predecessor’s claims to executive privilege, a decision that opened the door for DOJ to get a grand jury to issue a subpoena compelling Trump to turn over any remaining materials he possessed from his presidency. The machinations are summarized in several memos and emails exchanged between the various agencies in spring 2022, months before the FBI took the added unprecedented step of raiding Trump’s Florida compound with a court-issued search warrant. The most complete summary was contained in a lengthy letter dated May 10 that acting National Archivist Debra Steidel Wall sent Trump’s lawyers summarizing the White House’s involvement.

“On April 11, 2022, the White House Counsel’s Office — affirming a request from the Department of Justice supported by an FBI letterhead memorandum — formally transmitted a request that NARA provide the FBI access to the 15 boxes for its review within seven days, with the possibility that the FBI might request copies of specific documents following its review of the boxes,” Wall wrote Trump defense attorney Evan Corcoran. That letter revealed Biden empowered the National Archives and Records Administration to waive any claims to executive privilege that Trump might assert to block DOJ from gaining access to the documents. “The Counsel to the President has informed me that, in light of the particular circumstances presented here, President Biden defers to my determination, in consultation with the Assistant Attorney General for the Office of Legal Counsel, regarding whether or not I should uphold the former President’s purported ‘protective assertion of executive privilege,'” Wall wrote. “… I have therefore decided not to honor the former President’s ‘protective’ claim of privilege.”

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How can the FBI work with Trump II after January 2025?

FBI Brass Warned Agents Off Hunter Biden Laptop Due To 2020 Election (NYP)

FBI officials told agents not to investigate first son Hunter Biden’s infamous laptop for months — vowing that the bureau was “not going to change the outcome of the election again,” according to whistleblower claims made public Wednesday by Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) “These new allegations provide even more evidence of FBI corruption and renew calls for you to take immediate steps to investigate the FBI’s actions regarding the laptop,” Johnson wrote in a letter to Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz. According to the senator, “individuals with knowledge” had told his office that “local FBI leadership” had slow-walked the laptop investigation after the computer was recovered from a Wilmington, Del. repair shop in December 2019.

Johnson quoted FBI management as telling employees “You will not look at that Hunter Biden laptop” and promising the bureau would not alter the 2020 election outcome — a reference to the FBI reopening the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s private email server days before the 2016 election. “Further, these whistleblowers allege that the FBI did not begin to examine the contents of Hunter Biden’s laptop until after the 2020 presidential election,” the Republican added. sJohnson said the new whistleblower claims should be enough to prompt the inspector general to take prompt action. “While I understand your hesitation to investigate a matter that may be related to an ongoing investigation, it is clear to me based on numerous credible whistleblower disclosures that the FBI cannot be trusted with the handling of Hunter Biden’s laptop,” Johnson wrote.

He added that Horowitz should start “by obtaining the history of the investigative actions taken by the FBI on Hunter Biden’s laptop which should be available on the FBI’s case management system, Sentinel.” Johnson’s letter comes after “highly credible whistleblowers” accused the FBI and Justice Department last month of burying dirt on President Biden’s son by incorrectly dismissing the intelligence as “disinformation,” according to Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa.

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Fauci will use this to play the victim.

DeSantis Says ‘Little Elf’ Fauci Should Be ‘Chucked Across The Potomac’ (RT)

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has responded after senior health official Anthony Fauci said he would leave his post at the end of the year, calling the White House adviser a “little elf”while suggesting somebody should toss him into DC’s Potomac River. Speaking at a ‘Keep Florida Free’ event on Wednesday as he campaigns for reelection, DeSantis tore into the outgoing Covid czar, saying he’s “just sick of seeing him.” “I know he says he’s going to retire. Someone needs to grab that little elf and chuck him across the Potomac,” the Republican governor said, drawing loud cheers from the crowd. Fauci, who has long served as the head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), has taken prominent positions in both the Donald Trump and Joe Biden administrations, effectively becoming the face of the White House’s Covid response.


On Monday, however, the official said he would resign his post at NIAID and leave the Biden administration in December, though noted he would not be “retiring,” but rather “moving on”from his current positions. Fauci has drawn heated criticism from Republicans and conservative critics throughout the pandemic, with many slamming his policy advice for officials, while others have pointed to potentially dangerous coronavirus research funded by Fauci’s agency before the global Covid outbreak. Though the official has insisted all funding was vetted and approved through the proper channels, GOP Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky has vowed to probe NIAID and Fauci in particular, calling for a “full-throated investigation into the origins of the pandemic”earlier this week.

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Taiwan

 

 

 

 

 

 


The Pyramids of Giza. Photo: Karim Amr

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Aug 202022
 
 August 20, 2022  Posted by at 9:00 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,  27 Responses »


Pablo Picasso Man with ice cream cone 1938

 

US On Verge Of Becoming Party To Ukrainian Conflict, Moscow Warns (RT)
US Has Doomed Europe To Hunger And Cold – Russia (RT)
Middle East States In Line For $1.3 Trillion Windfall From Extra Oil Revenues (G.)
Russia’s Energy Export Revenues Forecast To Soar (RT)
Ukrainians Criticize Zelenskyy Over Withholding Invasion Warnings (NM)
‘He Was Special’: The Story Of Zelenskiy Told By His Hometown (G.)
Activate Nord Stream 2 ASAP, Says Top German Politician (Pol.eu)
Nationalist Unit Executes 100 Fellow Ukrainian Troops – Russian MoD (RT)
From Nuland’s Dream to Nuland’s Nightmare (Batiushka)
Macron Calls Putin (RT)
Stranded Russian Turbine Offered Emotional Support (RT)
FBI Raid Targeted Docs Trump Collected To “Exonerate” Him From Russiagate (SN)
The Meaning of Incredible (Jim Kunstler)

 

 

 

 

Uninformed Consent
An in-depth look into the Covid 19 narrative, who’s controlling it, and how it’s being used to inject an untested, new technology into almost every person on the planet.

 

 

What lockdown means

 

 

Tucker Viagra

 

 

 

 

They live

 

 

 

 

Crimea was Russian since 1783. Before that, Turkish, Ottoman, Mongol, etc. Khrushchev handed it to the autonomous Soviet republic of Ukraine in 1954. But that was astill Russian (Soviet). Now Ukraine claims it was always theirs.

US On Verge Of Becoming Party To Ukrainian Conflict, Moscow Warns (RT)

Washington’s continued support for Kiev during Moscow’s military operation has put the US on the verge of becoming party to the Ukrainian conflict, Russia’s deputy Foreign Minister, Sergey Ryabkov has said. “We don’t want escalation. We’d like to avoid a situation, in which the US becomes a party to the conflict, but so far we don’t see any readiness of the other side to take these warnings seriously,” Ryabkov told Rossiya 1 TV channel on Friday. Moscow rejects Washington’s explanation, that providing Ukraine with weapons and other aid is justified by Kiev’s right to self-defense, he pointed out. “Excuse me, what kind of self-defense is it if they are already openly talking about the possibility of attacking targets deep in the Russian territory, in Crimea?” the deputy FM wondered.

According to Ryabkov, such statements are being made by the Ukrainian side “not just under the blind eye of the US and NATO, but with the encouragement of this kind of sentiment, approaches, plans and ideas directly from Washington,” Ryabkov insisted. “The ever more obvious and deeper involvement in Ukraine in terms of countering our military operation, in fact, puts this country, the US, on the verge of turning into a party to the conflict,”he reiterated. The US has been the strongest supporter of Kiev amid its conflict with Russia, providing Kiev with billions of dollars in military and financial aid, as well as intelligence data. Washington’s deliveries to the Ukrainian military have included such sophisticated hardware as HIMARS multiple rocket launchers, M777 howitzers and combat drones.

Reuters reported on Friday that US President Joe Biden is about to announce another lethal aid package for Kiev of around $800 million. An unnamed official from the Biden administration told Politico on Thursday that the White House had no problem with Ukraine attacking Crimea, which became part of Russia after a 2014 referendum staged in response to a violent coup. The US believes that Kiev can strike any target on its territory, and “Crimea is Ukraine,” the American official insisted.

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More or less the same info came in another RT article entitled “Germany at risk of deindustrialization. “..the bloc has “closed everything themselves.“

The Bloomberg graph shows Producer Price Index. Consumer Price Index is lagging, but sure to follow.

US Has Doomed Europe To Hunger And Cold – Russia (RT)

The United States has doomed the EU to hunger, cold and isolation by pressuring the bloc to cut its ties with Moscow, Russian State Duma Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin said on Friday. He wrote on Telegram that Washington would “stop at nothing to cling to its power over the world as it throws under the bus the citizens’ welfare and the economies of European countries to achieve this end.” He noted that natural gas in the US costs $333 per 1,000 cubic meters. “At the same time, Washington sells it to Europe for a price which is 7.3 [times] higher, rendering the EU economy uncompetitive,” he wrote, adding that the eurozone’s annual inflation rate had hit a record 8.9%.

Volodin said Europe had been hit by a heatwave that triggered huge problems in the agriculture sector, as well as an energy crisis which had seen prices soar six times in one year. The EU’s decision to phase out Russian energy supplies and cut economic ties with Moscow “have been made under Washington’s pressure,” the State Duma speaker claimed. “US policies in Europe are enforced by England that has left the EU high and dry, as well as by a number of countries that are sovereign in name only – Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Ukraine – with Poland, the Czech Republic and Finland joining this Russophobic coalition in the hopes of getting an American handout,” Volodin wrote.

His comments come as the EU is plagued by an energy crisis due to rising global prices. Earlier this month, the bloc approved a plan that would see its member states reduce gas consumption by 15% in a bid to tackle the crisis. Another factor that has exacerbated the energy crunch was the EU’s decision to wean itself off natural gas from Russia, as the bloc considers these supplies to be unreliable. However, President Vladimir Putin has rejected accusations that Moscow could cut off gas supplies to the EU, stating that Russian energy giant Gazprom is “ready to pump as much as necessary” but that the bloc has “closed everything themselves.”

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Yes, that’s your money.

Middle East States In Line For $1.3 Trillion Windfall From Extra Oil Revenues (G.)

Middle Eastern states are to land a $1.3tn (£1.09tn) windfall from extra oil revenues over the next four years, according to the International Monetary Fund. The IMF said on Friday it expected oil and gas exporters in the region, notably the Gulf states, to benefit from high prices and opportunities to ramp up their market share. The oil and gas sector is in flux following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which has upended markets and sent prices soaring. Russia has increased exports of oil to Asian nations, while Vladimir Putin’s tactic of limiting gas supplies into Europe has left countries seeking new supply sources. Jihad Azour, the IMF’s director for the Middle East and north Africa, told the Financial Times that countries in the Middle East could expect to receive $1.3tn more in cumulative revenues than was forecast before the invasion of Ukraine.

He said Gulf states needed to use the windfall to “invest in the future”a, including efforts to switch towards greener energy sources. It’s an important moment for them to … accelerate in sectors like technology [domestically] as this is something that will allow them to increase productivity, Azour said. “In addition, their investment strategy could benefit from the fact that asset prices have improved for new investors, and the capacity to increase their market share in certain areas are also opportunities.”

[..] The IMF predicted the Gulf Cooperation Council – which includes the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Oman and Qatar – would collectively increase economic growth by 6.4% this year, from 2.7% growth last year. Last weekend, Saudi Arabia’s largely state-owned energy firm, Saudi Aramco, underscored the colossal profits made by gas- and oil-rich countries during the energy crisis by revealing profits in the three months to the end of June jumped 90% to $48bn.

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Defeating your opponent by making him rich. Must be a novel tactic.

Russia’s Energy Export Revenues Forecast To Soar (RT)

Russia will see a 38% year-on-year increase in energy earnings due to higher oil export volumes, coupled with rising natural gas prices, Reuters reported on Wednesday, citing a document from the German Economy Ministry. According to the report, the country’s revenues are expected to jump to $337.5 billion this year, which will help shore up the Russian economy in the face of Western sanctions. The document predicted that energy export earnings will ease to $255.8 billion next year, but will still be higher than the 2021 figure of $244.2 billion.


According to the forecast, the average gas export price will more than double this year to $730 per thousand cubic meters, before gradually falling until the end of 2025. The document pointed out that Moscow has started to gradually boost its oil production following the sanctions-related curbs and as a result of increased purchases by Asian buyers. Moscow has also improved its forecasts for output and exports until the end of 2025. Overall, the German Economy Ministry forecast cited by Reuters suggested that the Russian economy is coping well with the sanctions regime and will contract by less than expected.

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But even his critics say:

“Ukraine is winning because of our belief in the president and our armed forces..”

Where do they get their news from?

Ukrainians Criticize Zelenskyy Over Withholding Invasion Warnings (NM)

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy is being criticized by some in his country after he said in an interview this week that he held back details of the United States’ warnings about Russia’s impending invasion because he feared people would flee the country and its economy would collapse. “Honestly, my hair stood on end when I read what [Zelenskyy] said about evacuation,” journalist Bogdan Butkevich wrote on his Facebook page, reports The Washington Post. “How can a person who has Mariupol, Bucha, and Kherson on his conscience say that an evacuation would have overwhelmed the country? He didn’t want to put the country on a military footing because he was afraid of losing power.”

Zelenskyy told The Post in an interview published Tuesday that had the information been shared, “then I would have been losing $7 billion a month since last October, and at the moment when the Russians did attack, they would have taken us in three days.” The Ukrainian president added that as Russian troops did not reach the country’s capital of Kyiv, he made the right decision. “We were as strong as we could be,” he said. “Some of our people left, but most of them stayed here; they fought for their homes. And as cynical as it may sound, those are the people who stopped everything.” sSome Ukrainians interpreted his comments to mean he’d chosen to protect the country’s economy rather than its people and lives could have been saved if the population was better prepared for war.

Sevgil Musaieva, the editor-in-chief of the Ukrainian news site Ukrainska Pravda, said on Facebook she was “personally offended” by Zelenskyy’s explanation, as she feels it questioned the intelligence of the people of her country. Kateryna Babkina, a Ukrainian author, said Zelenskyy’s failure to announce warnings, particularly to civilians in the most threatened areas of the country, is a “crime” and “not a glitch, not a mistake, not an unfortunate misunderstanding, not a strategic miscalculation.” One woman, asking to be identified as just “Oksana” told The Post it would be dangerous at this point to speak out against Zelenskyy, but said after the war there are “questions that need answers.” “Ukraine is winning because of our belief in the president and our armed forces, so I’m ready to wait for the explanation until after we win the war,” she said.

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Pricesless. The Guardian has dispatched Luke Harding to Ukraine, where he can write puff pieces about Zelensky, just as the latter is running on his last legs.

‘He Was Special’: The Story Of Zelenskiy Told By His Hometown (G.)

“Volodymyr Zelenskiy was special. He was bright, hard-working and wanted to be the best of the best,” Andrii Shaikan, rector of the state university in Zelenskiy’s home town of Kryvyi Rih, told the Guardian. In the mid-1990s, Shaikan was at the university himself, in the year above Zelenskiy. The president’s father, Oleksandr, is a well-known academic and heads its department of informatics and applied software. Zelenskiy’s mother, Rymma, is an engineer. Both parents are Jewish. Like his friends and neighbours, Zelenskiy grew up speaking Russian.Shaikan said Zelenskiy Sr had hoped his son, who read law, may go into academia. Instead, the future president developed a taste for show business, taking part in sketches and comedy competitions.

His home was in one of the city’s middle-class districts. Back then, Kryvyi Rih was known for its criminal associations. Young men who returned from the Soviet war in Afghanistan drifted into lives of crime and drug dealing. “As a teenager, Volodymyr had two alternatives: he could succeed, or he could become a member of a criminal gang,” Shaikan recalled. He added: “We watched Volodymyr realise himself step by step. He has great leadership skills and is quick at solving problems. He makes instant decisions. And it’s very difficult to influence him.” The rector said he was not a fan of Zelenskiy’s “mass culture” TV shows including Servant of the People and preferred his live standup acts.

The rector voted for him in Ukraine’s 2019 presidential election, which Zelenskiy won by a landslide. “We knew his environment and family roots,” he said. One influence, Shaikan said, was Zelenskiy’s grandfather who worked in the USSR as a criminal detective. “Volodymyr was interested in the law. He wanted to take after his grandfather,” the rector said. In an interview with CNN, Zelenskiy revealed that his grandfather Semyon had fought in the Red Army, reaching the rank of colonel. Semyon’s father and three brothers perished in the Holocaust. The Germans murdered Zelenskiy’s great-grandparents when they burned down their village. His tragic family history makes ridiculous the Kremlin’s claim that Zelenskiy is a fascist.

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“Getting “gas from Nord Stream 2 is no more immoral than from Nord Stream 1. It’s just a different pipe..”

Activate Nord Stream 2 ASAP, Says Top German Politician (Pol.eu)

Germany should allow the blocked Nord Stream 2 pipeline to begin pumping Russian natural gas so “people do not have to freeze in winter and that our industry does not suffer serious damage,” Wolfgang Kubicki, vice president of the German parliament, said Friday. His comments prompted a fierce response from Kyiv, where Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said “addiction to Russian gas kills.” The pipeline is completed, but Berlin in late February refused to allow it to go online in reaction to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Kubicki, a member of Finance Minister Christian Lindner’s Free Democrats (FDP), called for activating the pipeline “as soon as possible” to fill gas storages ahead of winter. He said there is “no sound reason not to open Nord Stream 2,” because Germany is already getting gas through the older Russia-to-Germany Nord Stream pipeline.


Getting “gas from Nord Stream 2 is no more immoral than from Nord Stream 1. It’s just a different pipe,” he said. Imports via Nord Stream recently fell to just 20 percent of capacity, a drop Russia’s Gazprom blamed on the delayed return of a gas turbine but which German and EU officials say is politically motivated. Kubicki said opening Nord Stream 2 would test whether Russian President Vladimir Putin is willing to increase gas shipments to Germany. The Russian leader last month said: “We still have one ready route — that is Nord Stream 2. We can put that into operation.” Several FDP members criticized Kubicki’s remarks. “Nord Stream 2 is dead,” said Marie-Agnes Strack Zimmermann, an FDP lawmaker who chairs the Bundestag’s defense committee.

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”fighters from the neo-Nazi “Kraken” regiment “demonstratively executed 100 servicemen of the 58th motorized infantry brigade who abandoned their positions” near Udy..”

Nationalist Unit Executes 100 Fellow Ukrainian Troops – Russian MoD (RT)

Some 100 Ukrainian soldiers have been executed by nationalist fighters from the “Kraken” regiment for abandoning their positions, Russia’s Ministry of Defense claimed in a daily briefing on Friday. After Russian forces carried out an assault on Ukraine’s 58th motorized infantry brigade on August 14 near the settlement of Udy in the Kharkov region, the remnants of the formation fled their positions and retreated, ministry spokesman Major General Igor Konashenkov said. In order to “suppress panic and intimidate the personnel of the Armed forces of Ukraine,”fighters from the neo-Nazi “Kraken” regiment “demonstratively executed 100 servicemen of the 58th motorized infantry brigade who abandoned their positions” near Udy, the official said.

The “Kraken” regiment describes itself as a special reconnaissance and sabotage unit under the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense, operating separately from the Armed Forces. Moscow considers it to be an offshoot of the notorious neo-Nazi “Azov” regiment which suffered a crushing defeat in the city of Mariupol back in May. Russia’s Defense Ministry has accused the battalion of committing several war crimes since the beginning of the conflict, and believes it to be responsible for brutally mistreating Russian POWs.

While there is no information on how many fighters the “Kraken” regiment has, some estimates suggest it is about 1,800 soldiers strong, most of whom are Azov veterans and volunteers. Over the course of Russia’s military operation in Ukraine, the Ministry of Defense has regularly reported the elimination of hundreds of fighters from the “Kraken” regiment as well as from other nationalist divisions. In its Friday update, Russia’s MoD reported destroying temporary deployment points of the “Azov” and “Aidar” formations near the city of Soledar in the Donetsk People’s Republic, and claimed to have eliminated over 50 neo-Nazi fighters as well as 12 units of military equipment.

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“..You don’t want Europe, Mrs Kagan? Well, Europe doesn’t want you.”

From Nuland’s Dream to Nuland’s Nightmare (Batiushka)

In June 1944 the USA began its occupation of Continental Europe (Its occupation of the UK by 2 million US troops had already begun in 1942). The US occupation meant that World War II never really finished and neither therefore did its denazification. For only the local brutal German form of the Western ideology of Nazism ended, not its far more cunning, subtle, insidious and triumphant Anglo-American form, which was everywhere imposed, by political, economic and soft (Hollywood; Levis; Disney; MacDonalds; Lady Gaga etc) power, after the eradication of the German form. Indeed, in 1945 most German Nazis converted overnight to the Anglo-American form. Therefore, ending World War II today means deamericanising Europe, which means deNATOising it, that is, demilitarising it. This will provide the subsequent opportunity for Europe to retrieve its natural, geographical, social, political and economic historic destiny – as the north-western peninsula of Eurasia, which it can then at last reintegrate, protected and supplied by Russia.

The same revolutionary right of self-determination as in the Crimea could be spread from the deamericanised, that is, demilitarised and denazified, Ukraine all over Europe. Here is the transfiguration of Europe. Within Europe, the EU would collapse like the house of cards it is, if its peoples had for the first time in history the freedom by referendum to choose their country. Their model would be the Crimea in 2014, where people at last received the freedom to choose which country they actually wanted to belong to. Then Catalonia could be freed from Spain. Corsica could be freed from France. Minorities on borders everywhere could by popular vote return to the country they wish to belong to, the borders being adjusted accordingly. The three tiny and racist EU Baltic States, today depopulated, deindustrialised and in a suicidal state of Nazism and which are now about to ban Russian speech in public places, would surely become Russian protectorates like the future Kyiv Protectorate.

If freedom came to the Non-EU countries, the UK would collapse just like the EU and the four peoples of the British Isles and Ireland would at last have the freedom to sort out their affairs in an equitable manner. Moldova could remain an independent country, if its people decided so by referendum. And justice could be reached for the mainly Non-EU countries of ex-Yugoslavia and Albania. So many wrongs could be righted, if freedom came through deamericanisation. Here is Nuland’s Nightmare – the survival, and not the destruction, of Europe. You don’t want Europe, Mrs Kagan? Well, Europe doesn’t want you. Go back to America, Mrs Kagan, and sort out the disastrous state of affairs there. Only when you and your sort have gone, will Europe be transfigured.

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First time in three months.

Macron Calls Putin (RT)

Russian President Vladimir Putin and his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron have had their first phone call in almost three months to discuss the Ukraine conflict and nuclear security in the area of Zaporozhye, the Kremlin said on Friday. The call was initiated by the French side and saw the two leaders discuss “various aspects of the situation around Ukraine,” according to the Kremlin’s readout. Putin emphasized that “the systematic shelling of the territory of the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant by the Ukrainian military poses a danger of a large-scale disaster that could lead to radiation spillover onto a large territory,” Moscow said. The two leaders agreed that a mission under the auspices of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) should be dispatched to the NPP “as soon as possible” in order to assess the situation on site.

“The Russian side confirmed it’s ready to provide the Agency’s inspectors with all the necessary assistance,” the Kremlin said. According to the Elysee Palace, Putin agreed that the IAEA mission to Zaporozhye NPP would be dispatched on the terms already arranged by Ukraine and the United Nations. This would mean that the IAEA delegation might travel via the territory currently controlled by Kiev’s forces. Previously, Moscow insisted that such a mission could arrive only via Russian-controlled territory. The two sides will address this issue again in the coming days, after technical teams discuss the matter in detail, the Elysee said.

According to the Kremlin, Putin once again invited international experts to visit a detention facility in Yelenovka, in the Donetsk People’s Republic. An artillery attack on the prison, which Moscow says was carried out by Kiev’s forces, killed 50 Ukrainian POWs and injured dozens more last month. Putin also informed his French counterpart on the implementation of the deal for Ukrainian grain exports via the Black Sea. This agreement, which was brokered by the UN and Turkey, is also supposed to allow Russia to deliver fertilizers and food products to the global markets. However, the Kremlin noted, “obstacles for the Russian grain [export] persist,” which continues to have an adverse effect on global food security.

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“Should I Stay Or Should I Go?”

Stranded Russian Turbine Offered Emotional Support (RT)

Siemens Energy has offered to create a playlist on the Spotify streaming platform for the Nord Stream gas turbine, which is stuck in Germany with international sanctions preventing its return to Russia. “Our famous turbine is still not where it should be. It stands alone on our site in Mülheim an der Ruhr. Let’s do the poor thing a favor and create a Spotify playlist,” the company tweeted on Wednesday, proposing to start with the song ‘So Lonely’ by The Police. Social media users responded to the call with The Clash’s ‘Should I Stay or Go?’ quoting one of its verses: “If I go there will be trouble. And if I stay it will be double. So ya gotta let me know Should I stay or should I go?”

Among the other proposals were Queen’s ‘I want to break free,’ and ‘Life’s a Gas’ by T. Rex, as well as Limahl’s ‘Never Ending Story’. Twitter users suggested that the playlist should include ‘Tired of Being Alone’, ‘Enjoy the Silence’ by Depeche Mode and ‘Lemon Tree’ by Fools Garden. Russia’s Gazprom has also joined in, advising Siemens to include the track ‘Breaking the Law’ by Judas Priest. The Nord Stream 1 gas turbine has become the focus of an energy row between Russia and Germany, after having undergone maintenance in Canada. It was meant to be transported to the pipeline’s compressor station in Russia back in May, so the gas flow to EU could be maintained at full capacity.

However, after weeks of delay in Canada over Ottawa’s refusal to return the critical part due to its sanctions on Moscow, it is now stuck in Germany. Russian energy major Gazprom has insisted that Western sanctions are hindering the return of the turbine from Germany and threaten future equipment maintenance at the Nord Stream 1 pipeline. According to the company, the paperwork for the part’s return is not in order, as it was issued by Siemens Energy and not the firm that is contracted by Gazprom. s

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“Senator Rand Paul stated that “the burden is on the FBI to justify this raid.”

FBI Raid Targeted Docs Trump Collected To “Exonerate” Him From Russiagate (SN)

A report in Newsweek citing U.S. intelligence officials has claimed that one of the main purposes of the FBI’s raid on Mar-a-Lago was to find documents that President Trump had collected and intended to use as proof to put to bed once and for all the Russian collusion conspiracy theory. The report states that Trump intended to “weaponise” the documents as part of his campaign for 2024. The article notes that “The sought-after documents deal with a variety of intelligence matters of interest to the former president, the officials suggest—including material that Trump apparently thought would exonerate him of any claims of Russian collusion in 2016 or any other election-related charges.”

The piece also quotes a former Trump official who states that “Trump was particularly interested in matters related to the Russia hoax and the wrong-doings of the deep state.” “I think he felt, and I agree, that these are facts that the American people need to know,” the anonymous former aide added. This development comes as a Florida federal magistrate is scheduled to hold a hearing on whether or not to unseal the probable cause affidavit for the raid. Commenting on the ongoing matter, Senator Rand Paul stated that “the burden is on the FBI to justify this raid.” In a Fox News appearance, Paul said “This is extraordinary. This is also the same FBI that used a foreign intelligence warrant to snoop on and spy on the Trump campaign to investigate them for over two years.

“So I think the burden really is on the FBI. They’ve been wrong in the past. They’ve broken the law in using these foreign intelligence warrants. Now they used a domestic warrant, but I do think they need to release the justification for this, because this is extraordinary.” The Senator further urged “We should not lose sight of the fact this has never, ever happened before for good reason, because we need to have confidence in the FBI. We need to have confidence in our intelligence agencies that they’re there to protect us and not to go after people for political purposes. So the burden is on them to prove that this is not a politically motivated witch hunt.”

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“They lied about their roles in the nefarious origins of SARS CoV-2. They conjured up — already had waiting, actually — dangerous genetic treatments masquerading as “vaccines” and then they faked the safety trials to rush them into use. They denied people proper, effective treatments with inexpensive drugs and killed them with ventilators and remdesivir — solely to maintain a fraudulent emergency use authorization (EUA) that shielded “vaccine” companies from lawsuits. ”

The Meaning of Incredible (Jim Kunstler)

The CDC seems to think nobody will notice its crimes, and the crimes of its sister agencies, FDA, NIAID, NIH, (and the White House Task Force) if it strolls jauntily into the fall season whistling a happy a tune: Nevermind Covid anymore, la la la…. Did I say crimes? Yes, I did. As in gross violations of the law and the basic social contract. They lied about their roles in the nefarious origins of SARS CoV-2. They conjured up — already had waiting, actually — dangerous genetic treatments masquerading as “vaccines” and then they faked the safety trials to rush them into use. They denied people proper, effective treatments with inexpensive drugs and killed them with ventilators and remdesivir — solely to maintain a fraudulent emergency use authorization (EUA) that shielded “vaccine” companies from lawsuits.

Once the “vaccines’ were widely distributed — and forced upon many people with mandates — they confabulated and hid information about adverse reactions and deaths. They destroyed countless small businesses, livelihoods, households, and hindered children’s development with lockdowns. And they used both social and news media to censor their critics in direct violation of the first amendment. That’s all. Oh, one more thing: they destroyed modern medicine. They will probably assist in the destruction of law, too, because the legal system will never be able to handle the volume of lawsuits against all parties involved in the Covid “vaccine” mass slaughter — including the corporations that forced their employees to get vaxxed and the pharma companies themselves, who will lose their EUA protections once their fraud is proven.

And they will hasten the death of an already ailing financial system that can’t bear the wealth transfers implied in the foregoing (on top of the worst debt crisis in human history). You think I exaggerate? We’re sailing into the flu season with millions of people whose immune systems are wrecked by multiple shots of mRNA novelty drugs. They are also susceptible to many viruses and bacteria which normally lurk in everybody’s bodily ecosystem, but would be controlled by otherwise healthy immune systems. Likewise, their hacked immune systems are no longer able to suppress cancers — many forms of which are already way up above normal statistical levels. Not to mention damage done to cardiovascular systems by spike proteins, which linger in human bodies for more than a year after “vaccine” shots, as well as neurological and brain damage.

Former Wall Street analyst Edward Dowd said yesterday (Aug 18) that a Society of Actuaries report just made public shows that a 20 percent uptick in excess deaths among working age people, which began with vaxx mandates in the fall of 2021, continued into the second quarter of 2022. Actuaries are the people who compile and analyze statistics for insurance companies.

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Julian DN

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kiwis are getting 7x more sick than pre-Covid.

 

 

 

 

Hillary Soros

 

 

 

 

The best video

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

Aug 092022
 
 August 9, 2022  Posted by at 8:35 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,  46 Responses »


Piet Mondriaan Trees by the Gein at Moonrise 1908

 

The FBI has Raided President Trump’s Home (Techno Fog)
The Sickening Quickening (Kunstler)
Liz Cheney’s Husband Is Partner At Law Firm Representing Hunter Biden (Fed.)
West Wants To Destroy Russia – Medvedev (RT)
‘Millions’ In Germany Won’t Be Able To Pay For Heating – Union (RT)
Germany Rules Out Emergency Use Of Nord Stream 2 Gas Pipeline (RT)
Netherlands To Shut Down 11,200 Farms To Meet Climate Goals (Sweden)
Europe Is Being Hit By A Climate-Driven Drought Crisis (G.)
CIA’s Strategy Towards China Revealed (RT)
Ukrainian Region Announces Vote On Joining Russia (RT)
Austrian Barbarians Go Home! (Batiushka)
Poland Proceeding With Its Plans For Ukraine – Moscow (RT)
An Unpleasant Truth For Ukrainians Is Coming To Light (Milacic)
CBS Caves Into Ukrainian Pressure On Weapons Revelations (RT)
Russia Accuses Ukraine Of ‘Nuclear Terrorism’ (RT)
Time for a Red-State NATO-like Alliance on Boycotts (Turley)
Australian Labor Party & Assange: Burying the Politics (Tranter)

 

 

NOTE: I know there are a lot of RT articles here lately. But it is simply the best source for Ukraine news. And rather than being Russian propaganda, it’s the only English-language source that is not rabidly anti-Russian.

 

 

 

 

The French with photos of relatives who have died from the vaccine !!

 

 

Denmark.

 

 

DMED database

 

 

A typical UK gas and power bill this winter.

 

 

 

 

“..the criminalization of politics..”

The FBI has Raided President Trump’s Home (Techno Fog)

Breaking news for a Monday night: President Trump announced his home in Palm Beach – Mar-A-Lago – “is currently under siege, raided, and occupied by a large group of FBI agents.” [..] According to the New York Times, the search has to do with materials taken home by President Trump after he left the White House: “The search, according to two people familiar with the investigation, appeared to be focused on material that Mr. Trump had brought with him to Mar-a-Lago, his private club and residence, after he left the White House. Those boxes contained many pages of classified documents, according to a person familiar with their contents. Mr. Trump delayed returning 15 boxes of material requested by officials with the National Archives for many months, only doing so when there became a threat of action being taken to retrieve them.”

The politics of the search can’t be ignored. If the New York Times is to be believed, Trump’s purported crime – the delay of returning materials that may be classified – could have been resolved in another manner that didn’t involve raiding his home and breaking open a personal safe. No doubt the search is an escalation by a desperate Regime confronted by their own failures at home and abroad. What about the relation of the search to January 6? I’ve gone back and forth as I’ve written this, but it’s certainly possible they were also after documents related to January 6. There are no guarantees, considering the politicization of Biden’s DOJ, which has thus far protected friends in politics, the killer of Ashley Babbitt, supporters in academia, and the President Biden’s own corrupt son.

One can be certain, however, that if the Biden Administration will carry out this raid, then it will also be aggressive to pursue charges against Trump related to January 6. As if there were any doubt. After all, last week there was reporting that a federal grand jury investigating January 6 had issued subpoenas to the Trump White House Counsel, Pat Cipollone, and his top deputy, Patrick Philbin. Perhaps the roadmap for the DOJ comes from the January 6 Committee, which has poured out the thin gruel of purported criminal charges against Trump, alleging he and others, including attorney John Eastman, could be charged with: • Obstruction of an Official Proceeding (18 USC 1512(c)(2)); and • Conspiracy to Defraud the United States (18 USC 371). Each of these counts, and really the DOJ’s pursuit of Trump and his attorneys and advisors, amounts to the criminalization of politics.

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“My personal theory is that the Covid-19 release was wholly and entirely about getting rid of Donald Trump and nothing else..”

The Sickening Quickening (Kunstler)

Do you still doubt that the federal bureaucracy and the elected government parasitically attached to it seek to harm the people they rule (i.e., us) by any means necessary? They’re still pushing Covid “vaccines” in a futile effort to eliminate the control group of their massive eugenics experiment — that is, the unvaccinated, who are not getting the many vaccine-induced diseases behind the rise of all-causes mortality in people under 65. But the vaxx scam isn’t working anymore. Too many people have already been hurt, or killed, or seen friends and relatives go down mysteriously and they’re taking a pass on any more shots. Parents have evidently seen enough to not bring their little children in for the life-altering mRNA treatments. The CDC, the FDA, and their cohorts hide their information, lie when pressed, and pretend that they are acting scientifically.

But really, at this point, many public health officials must be secretly wondering how they will evade prosecution. They won’t when fraud is proven in a court of law. Even with all the lies and redactions issued by the CDC and the FDA, the evidence is piling miles high that the Pfizer and Moderna drug trials were covered-up botches and the entire administration of the vaccine program has been an unnecessary disaster. Fraud vitiates immunity from liability. The pharma companies will go out of business and their profits will be clawed back in countless lawsuits. The drug company executives will go to prison along with Rochelle Walensky, Anthony Fauci, Dr. Scott Gottlieb, and many of their lieutenants.

My personal theory is that the Covid-19 release was wholly and entirely about getting rid of Donald Trump and nothing else, in order to protect the permanent bureaucracy, a.k.a. the deep state, which was faltering in its countless turpitudes against the people, including the FBI and DOJ’s complicity in the criminal frauds and seditions of RussiaGate, and the CIA’s complicity in the “whistleblower” shenanigans behind Trump impeachment No. 1. The “long game” in the Covid-19 scam of 2020 was obviously to set-up the loosest mail-in voting apparatus possible to enable maximum ballot fraud in that year’s elections. The catch is, the Covid-19 play did not protect the deep state; it only further demonstrated its malevolence.

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It’s a big club… In a small world.

Liz Cheney’s Husband Is Partner At Law Firm Representing Hunter Biden (Fed.)

Philip Perry, who is married to Wyoming Rep. Liz Cheney, is a partner at the same law firm representing President Joe Biden’s scandal-ridden son, Hunter. Last week, the Daily Mail reached out to Hunter Biden’s attorney for comment on a story unearthing new details to the extent the younger Biden leveraged the family name for lucrative overseas business ventures. In 2014, the paper reported, then-Vice President Biden met with a pair of Chinese energy executives connected to Hunter Biden’s foreign business deals. An attorney named Christopher Clark, who is listed with the firm Latham & Watkins as partner, responded to the Daily Mail’s request for comment calling the reporter a “parasite” in an otherwise nonsensical email full of typos.

The vice president’s 2014 encounter with Chinese energy tycoons marks the fifteenth such meeting with businessmen tied to Hunter Biden’s financial interests, and contradicts Biden’s repeated claims of never discussing business with his son, “or with anyone else.” The first son is currently under federal investigation for money laundering and foreign lobbying. Perry is also listed as a partner with Lathan & Watkins on the firm’s website while his wife runs for re-election on an anti-Trump platform ahead of the Wyoming primary next week. Cheney faces an uphill contest from Trump-endorsed attorney Harriet Hageman in a state that voted for former President Donald Trump two years ago by a wider margin than anywhere else in the country.

A poll sponsored by the Casper-Star Tribune last month shows Hageman up by 22 points as Cheney tries to clinch a fourth term by appealing to Democrats. Even if every Democrat in the state were to change their registration to back Cheney in the primary, however, Cheney’s Trump-backed opponent remains likely to prevail where Republicans outnumber Democrats more than 200,000 to 43,000. On Sunday, the New York Times published a profile of the race ahead of next week’s contest chronicling Cheney’s failing campaign. “She no longer provides advance notice about her Wyoming travel and, not welcome at most county and state Republican events, has turned her campaign into a series of invite-only House parties,” the Times reported.

“What’s more puzzling than her schedule is why Ms. Cheney, who has raised over $13 million, has not poured more money into the race, especially early on when she had an opportunity to define Ms. Hageman,” the paper added. “Ms. Cheney had spent roughly half her war chest as of the start of July, spurring speculation that she was saving money for future efforts against Mr. Trump.”The Wyoming congresswoman likely to lose her seat in the next Congress has been laying the foundation for a presidential run in 2024. “If I have to choose between maintaining a seat in the House of Representatives or protecting the constitutional republic and ensuring the American people know the truth about Donald Trump, I’m going to choose the Constitution and the truth every single day,” Cheney said on CNN last month.

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“..neither Kiev nor Tbilisi will ever become members of NATO or the EU, and that “even the unshaven guy in a green T-shirt from Kiev” understands this.”

West Wants To Destroy Russia – Medvedev (RT)

The West has launched an aggressive “geopolitical process” aimed at destroying Russia, former President Dmitry Medvedev claimed in an interview with TASS published on Monday. Asked if the hostilities between Russia and Georgia in 2008 and the current conflict in Ukraine are “links in the same chain,” Medvedev said they are without a doubt part of the same scheme orchestrated by the West. “This is a single process and a common plan directed against Russia. It consists of the desire of the West, primarily the United States and other Anglo-Saxon countries, to rock the situation in our country. How? Through neighbors in close proximity to the borders of Russia,” Medvedev, the deputy head of the National Security Council, and president of Russia from 2008 to 2012, explained.

He noted that before the conflict with Georgia began in 2008, when Tbilisi’s forces began shelling the disputed region of South Ossetia and killed a number of Russian peacekeepers and civilians, the US was “cynically engaged” in the training, funding, and arming of the Georgian Army, and Washington was actively encouraging then-Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili to launch an attack against the civilian population in the area. The same “provocative and, let’s face it, criminal policy of the US” is currently being aggressively pursued in Ukraine, Medvedev said, adding that this time, the process is receiving more active support from the EU, which he says has “finally lost its independence.” “But the end goal remains the same,” he claimed, “to destroy Russia,” arguing that this goal is the root cause of the “extremely aggressive, Russophobic geopolitical process initiated by the West.”

The former president went on to say that despite NATO’s attempts to expand along Russia’s borders, which has become “a global problem that makes all reasonable people sick,”the US-led bloc has no intention of allowing either Ukraine or Georgia to become members. “They understand that anything they undertake in beleaguered countries such as Ukraine or Georgia, which are in territorial disputes with Russia, will be more expensive for themselves. The costs will be enormous,” Medvedev noted, adding that neither Kiev nor Tbilisi will ever become members of NATO or the EU, and that “even the unshaven guy in a green T-shirt from Kiev” understands this.

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On top of this, they announced a new fuel tax last week.

‘Millions’ In Germany Won’t Be Able To Pay For Heating – Union (RT)

At least a third of Germans on low incomes may not be able to pay increasingly high energy bills, the German Tenants’ Association (DMB) has warned, urging the government to make changes to housing programs. “That’s a hell of a lot of people,” Lukas Siebenkotten, the DMB’s chief, told newspaper Der Tagesspiegel on Sunday. “We’re talking about millions here.” Siebenkotten urged the government to allow more people to claim housing benefits in the wake of rising energy prices. “Tenants must also be protected from the termination of contracts if they cannot make increased advance payments,” he said. The remarks came after Klaus Mueller, the head of the Federal Network Agency, Germany’s gas regulator, warned that consumers should conserve at least 20% of gas in order to avoid shortages during the winter.

“In all other scenarios, we either face the threat of a gas shortage as early as December, or have low-level shortages at the end of the upcoming heating season,” Mueller said, describing current gas prices as “astronomically high.” High inflation and increased energy costs in Germany have been exacerbated by fears that Russia might completely cut off supplies of natural gas to the country. Germany and other EU states imposed sweeping sanctions on Moscow in response to its military campaign in Ukraine and unveiled a plan to phase out Russian gas. However, the German government has repeatedly warned that an immediate end of supplies from Moscow would badly damage the economy, increase unemployment and lower living standards.

Russian gas company Gazprom decreased the flow to Germany through the Nord Stream 1 Baltic Sea pipeline and then suspended deliveries altogether for 10 days last month for maintenance work. According to Gazprom, the routine maintenance process had been disrupted by the hold-up of a repaired turbine in Canada, which Ottawa initially refused to return to Germany due to sanctions. Berlin rolled out a gas-saving plan late last month, which includes boosting reserves in gas storage facilities and using more coal power plants.

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How will these governments survive the cold? People will discover that the only reason their kids are freezing is an ideological one.

Germany Rules Out Emergency Use Of Nord Stream 2 Gas Pipeline (RT)

Germany is not going to put Russia’s Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline into operation even if the situation with energy supplies deteriorates in the coming months, government spokesman Steffen Hebestreit said on Monday. “What is clear is that we stand firmly on the side of Ukraine, that we support the sanctions that we jointly adopted in the EU and in consultations with the international community… What is also clear is that Nord Stream 2 is not certified and is not currently going through the certification process and thus is not available [for operation],” the spokesman said at a press briefing. When asked specifically if German Chancellor Olaf Scholz rules out using the pipeline in the coming fall and winter if the situation with gas supplies in the region becomes more complicated, Hebestreit said “yes, he rules it out.”


The government representative agreed that the upcoming heating season may be difficult for Germany, but noted that the government is taking the necessary steps to ease the situation. The construction of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, aimed at boosting Russian natural gas supplies to the EU, was completed last year. However, Berlin halted its certification shortly before Russia launched a military operation in Ukraine in late February. Hebestreit’s comments echo those of German Economy Minister Robert Habeck, who said last month that Germany does not plan to revive the Nord Stream 2 certification process despite fears of supply disruptions, and urged his country to conserve natural gas and continue decreasing its dependence on supplies from Russia.

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“..1/5 of all farms will be forced to shut down and almost 1/3 of farms forced to scale down and reduce livestock..”

Netherlands To Shut Down 11,200 Farms To Meet Climate Goals (Sweden)

If you have followed my reporting you probably know about the protests happening in the Netherlands. Tens of thousands of farmers have taken to the streets to protest against new climate goals which will force farmers to shut down their farms. They have set hay bales on fire on motorways and dumped manure and even blocked supermarket distribution centers. According to calculations done by the Finance ministry, a whopping 11 200 livestock farmers will be forced to shut down by the government to reduce nitrogen emissions in order to meet European environmental rules. Another 17 600 farmers would need to reduce the amount of animals they keep to meet these climate goals.

And this is bad. Because there are about 54 000 farms in the Netherlands, meaning that around 1/5 of all farms will be forced to shut down and almost 1/3 of farms forced to scale down and reduce livestock. Meaning that thousands and thousands of farmers will be losing their livelihoods in order to meet government climate goals. They are literally going to make people loose their livelihoods in order to meet climate goals. That is crazy. Not only that, think about all the food that will be lost as a result of this. We are already facing a food crisis due to sky high fertilizer prices and grain shortages due to the war in Ukraine. We need more food now, not less! The climate change fanatics are trying to bring us back to the middle ages.


The state is planning on forcing farmers to sell their farms to the state (buying them out). State sanctioned appropriation of farms and land. Now where have I heard about that kind of thing before…? Oh yes, under Communism. I told you that this is Climate Communism and that The Great Reset is just another word for Global Communism. And it seems like people in the Netherlands are not happy with these government plans, as the political party of the Prime Minister in the Netherlands, VVD, has reached a new all-time low in the polls. If there was an election now, they would lose 13 of their 34 seats in parliament. A whopping 7 out of 10 voters say that they are dissatisfied with the Cabinet of the Prime Minister. Meanwhile the new party called Farmer-Citizen Movement is now polling in second place.

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WIth the recent revelations about the Great Barrier Reef, maybe take it easy with the term “Climate-Driven”.

Europe Is Being Hit By A Climate-Driven Drought Crisis (G.)

Europe’s most severe drought in decades is hitting homes, factories, farmers and freight across the continent, as experts warn drier winters and searing summers fuelled by global heating mean water shortages will become “the new normal”. The EU European Drought Observatory has calculated that 45% of the bloc’s territory was under drought warning by mid-July, with 13% already on red alert, prompting the European Commission to warn of a “critical” situation in multiple regions. Conditions have deteriorated since as repeated heatwaves roll across the continent. In France, the prime minister, Élisabeth Borne, last week activated a crisis unit to tackle a drought Météo-France described as the country’s worst since records began in 1958.

More than 100 French municipalities have no running drinking water and are being supplied by truck, green transition minister Christophe Béchu said, adding: “We are going to have to get used to episodes of this type. Adaptation is no longer an option, it’s an obligation.” With surface soil humidity the lowest ever recorded and July rainfall 85% lower than usual, water restrictions including hosepipe and irrigation bans are in place in 93 of the country’s 96 mainland départements, with 62 classified as “in crisis”. Amid rising food prices following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, France’s agriculture minister warned the corn harvest is likely to be more than 18% lower than last year, while farmers’ unions say a shortage of cattle fodder as a result of the drought could lead to significant milk shortages in the autumn and winter.

The electricity utility EDF was last week forced to reduce output from one of its nuclear reactors in south-western France because of high water temperatures in the Garonne River, and has issued multiple similar warnings for reactors along the Rhône. Spain’s water reserves are at all-time low of 40% and have been falling at a rate of 1.5% a week through a combination of increased consumption and evaporation, according to the government, in what is likely to be the driest of the past 60 years. The country has received less than half its expected rainfall for the time of year for the past three months, with restrictions in place from Catalonia in the north-east to Galicia in the north-west as well as western Extremadura and Andalucía in the south. Most water restrictions have been imposed on domestic users, with rural authorities often reluctant to rein in farmers’ frequently illegal exploitation of an increasingly scant resource despite agriculture accounting for nine-tenths of Spain’s water consumption.

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“..cutting-edge technologies developed by China, including advancements in quantum science, artificial intelligence and other areas “that are likely to disrupt how future wars are fought and economies are structured.”

CIA’s Strategy Towards China Revealed (RT)

The CIA’s shift of focus to “great power competition” with China means that “money and resources would be increasingly shifted”away from counterterrorism (CT), the spy agency’s second-highest ranking officer reportedly told leaders of its CT branch. The meeting was held some weeks ago behind closed doors, the Associated Press reported on Monday, citing anonymous sources. Deputy Director David Cohen assured officials during the meeting that fighting terrorists would remain a priority for the agency to a significant degree, the report said. The entire US intelligence community has been pivoting towards China under the current administration, with hundreds of officers reassigned, including from counterterrorism, according to the news agency.

The CIA is also moving in that direction, hiring new officers fluent in Chinese and teaching the language to current employees, the AP said. The realignment, which is being done under pressure from Congress, means inevitable cuts of funding and manpower in other areas, the news agency said. Lawmakers are particularly interested in cutting-edge technologies developed by China, including advancements in quantum science, artificial intelligence and other areas “that are likely to disrupt how future wars are fought and economies are structured.” Last October, the CIA announced a major structural reform, which included the creation of two so-called mission centers. One is dedicated to China and the other to emerging technologies.

The AP’s report comes on the back of last week’s announcement of the CIA-led assassination of al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri, who was killed by a drone strike in Kabul, US President Joe Biden announced last Monday. The agency noted that supporters of the White House say the strike showed the US can deal with terrorist threats despite pulling out from Afghanistan last year. Critics, meanwhile, have suggested that Zawahiri’s presence in the country indicated a resurgence of terrorism after the Taliban takeover. Afghanistan’s new authorities rejected US claims that the al-Qaeda leader had been granted protection and the green light to live in the capital.

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“..Zelensky on Sunday reiterated a warning that if the two regions go through with their plans, Kiev will break off all talks with Russia..”

What talks?

Ukrainian Region Announces Vote On Joining Russia (RT)

aporozhye Region will hold a referendum on whether to secede from Ukraine and request joining Russia, the head of its administration announced on Monday. Evgeny Balitskiy said that he had signed an order to organize the plebiscite during a regional forum held in the city of Melitopol. Over 700 representatives from various parts of the Ukrainian region approved the idea, according to RIA Novosti. Earlier comments by administration officials indicated the referendum may be held as soon as mid-September. Russian forces took partial control of the region during the initial offensive against Ukraine launched in late February. The eponymous city located in the north of the region on the Dnepr River remains under Ukrainian control.

Officials in Kherson Region, another Russia-controlled part of Ukraine, voiced similar plans to put to a vote the proposal of breaking away from Kiev and seeking to join Russia. Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky on Sunday reiterated a warning that if the two regions go through with their plans, Kiev will break off all talks with Russia. Moscow in response suggested that the Ukrainian president should address the citizens of those regions. “The thing is, this is what the residents of the region plan. It’s not like we [Russia] are holding a referendum. Here, apparently, it is necessary to understand to whom Zelensky is addressing this statement – to the citizens of Ukraine of the mentioned regions or to the citizens of Russia? If it’s to the citizens and leadership of Russia, then we are the wrong address,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov commented on Monday.

There have been no peace talks between Russia and Ukraine for months, as Kiev rejected such contacts and claimed it would only negotiate after defeating Russian on the battlefield with the help of Western military aid. Before the talks broke off, the two nations appeared to have made progress in resolving their differences. During a meeting in Istanbul in late March, Kiev had pledged to become a neutral country and accept restrictions on its military. Moscow said it prepared a draft peace agreement based on those proposals, but Ukraine never responded. An indirect Russian-Ukrainian deal was mediated last month by the UN and Turkey to allow grain exports from three Ukrainian ports to resume via the Black Sea. The scheme was formalized in two separate agreements that were signed by Russia and Ukraine with the other two parties.

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“..our forces have been victorious everywhere, constantly boldly retreating..”

Austrian Barbarians Go Home! (Batiushka)

(With apologies to the peoples of Austria and France) As we write, the wicked Austrian terrorist State under its manic leader Putzin continues its completely unprovoked invasion of East France. President Putzin is well-known, as he is very short (not that we wish to belittle him) and has only one testicle, as everybody knows. His invasion and occupation of East France have been going on for nearly six months now and our forces have been victorious everywhere, constantly boldly retreating. However, as the younger among you may need a reminder to the facts of the background of this evil invasion, we give this below.

In 1945 France liberated defeated Nazi Germany and set about looking after it. As the word ‘Germany’ is such an ugly word, it was replaced by ‘East France’. Here hordes of workers made products for the Paris government which for nearly three generations very generously allowed the East France people to speak their German dialect. However, enough was enough and the time came when in 2014 Paris declared that all education would in the future be in French and that the German dialect would be banned in public places. If any East French were dissatisfied, too bad for them, they would just have to go and live in another country. Another huge act of generosity on the part of our glorious Paris government. Almost immediately, and in a quite unprovoked and totally unexpected manner, the evil Austrian regime annexed Bavaria.

(They called it an ‘Anschluss’, though how you pronounce such a long, complicated and ugly word, we have no idea). True, they held a referendum, in which over 90% of Bavarians voted to join Austria, but obviously nobody believes those results. Quite typically Putzin probably threatened to shoot anyone who did not vote for him. Then, on top of that, Austrian-backed, German-speaking separatists began to fight against Paris forces in Saxony. Leipzig was reduced to rubble by our brilliant artillerymen and over 10,000 separatist civilians, including over 400 children, were eliminated. However, on 24 February 2022, the Putzin regime invaded Saxony, murdering civilians and raping tens of millions of women and children, throwing babies out of incubators and bayoneting them. These are well-known facts.

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“..President Andrzej Duda has expressed hope that there will be no border between Poland and Ukraine in the future, calling the two nations “fraternal.”

As Zelensky shouts about defending Ukraine, he’s selling it off at large discounts. And if Poland get their share, Hungary will demand theirs.

As for deploying Polish “peacekeeping” forces in Ukraine, beware.

Poland Proceeding With Its Plans For Ukraine – Moscow (RT)

Warsaw is looking to send “peacekeeping” forces into Western Ukraine and take over sectors of the economy, Russia’s Foreign Intelligence Service claims Warsaw continues to carry out an apparent attempt to “reclaim” parts of Ukraine in accordance with its “far-reaching plans” for the country, Russia’s Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR) said in a statement posted on Monday. According to Russian intelligence, Poland is not only setting up a scenario to deploy its “peacekeeping” forces to the western parts of Ukraine, but is also trying to establish control over promising sectors of the Ukrainian economy, first and foremost – agriculture. The SVR claims that Polish companies have taken advantage of the difficult condition Ukrainian farmers are in by arranging to purchase their goods at reduced prices, which is allegedly pushing some Ukrainian agriculture enterprises toward bankruptcy.

The intelligence agency claims that Polish entities will then buy up these assets and lands at bargain prices. “This can be illustrated, for example, by the purchase of new barley crop at $30 per ton, which is almost 5 times cheaper than the real cost of this product,” the SVR noted in its report. The agency goes on to claim that Poland is investing in the creation of transport infrastructure and other logistics for the unimpeded export of Ukrainian food to Europe and other markets where prices are much higher. All of this is being done under the new legal framework created by Kiev, the SVR explains, referring to a law on special guarantees for Polish citizens introduced in late July, and also one that allows Ukrainian industrial enterprises to be sold at a 50% discount.

Thus, the current Kiev authorities have essentially already started selling off the country, giving priority in this ‘business project’ to their Polish neighbors. In April, SVR chief Sergey Naryshkin claimed that intelligence obtained by Moscow suggested that Poland and the US were working on a plan for Warsaw to regain control of Ukrainian areas that they consider as “historically belonging” to it. He also suggested that the first phase of this “reunification” project would see Polish troops deployed to parts of Ukraine as “peacekeepers” under the pretext of protecting Ukraine from “Russian aggression.” Poland has categorically denied these claims, although President Andrzej Duda has expressed hope that there will be no border between Poland and Ukraine in the future, calling the two nations “fraternal.”

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Amnesty did thorough research. Just like CBS.

An Unpleasant Truth For Ukrainians Is Coming To Light (Milacic)

Amnesty says survivors and eyewitnesses of Russian attacks in Donbass, Kharkiv and the Mykolaiv region told researchers that the Ukrainian military was conducting operations near their homes at the time of the attacks, exposing the areas to counterfire from Russian forces. Amnesty International researchers have witnessed such behavior in numerous locations. International humanitarian law requires all parties to a conflict to avoid locating, to the greatest extent possible, military targets within or near densely populated areas. Other obligations to protect civilians from the effects of attacks include removing civilians from the vicinity of military targets and providing effective warning of attacks that may affect the civilian population.

– The army was stationed in the house next to ours and my son often brought food to the soldiers. I begged him several times to stay away, because I feared for his safety. That afternoon, when the attack happened, my son was in our yard and I was in the house. He died on the spot. His body was mutilated. Our house was partially destroyed – said the mother of a man (50), who was killed in a rocket attack on June 10 in a village south of Nikolaev. Amnesty International found military equipment and uniforms in the house next to hers. Nikola, who lives in the block in Lisichansk in Donbass, which the Russians regularly targeted and killed at least one person, said that it is not clear to him “why our army fires from the cities and not from the fields”.

Another resident said that “there is definitely military activity in the neighborhood.” – We hear “outgoing” and then “incoming” fire” – he said. Amnesty International teams saw soldiers using residential buildings located 20 meters from the entrance to the underground shelter, which was used by residents and where an elderly man was killed. In one Donbas town on May 6, Russian forces used cluster munitions over a neighborhood of mostly one- or two-story houses where Ukrainian forces were manning artillery. Shrapnel damaged the walls of the house where Ana (70) lives with her son and 95-year-old mother.

In early July, a farm worker was injured when Russian forces attacked an agricultural warehouse in the Nikolayev area. Hours after the attack, Amnesty International researchers witnessed the presence of Ukrainian military personnel and vehicles in the grain storage area, and witnesses confirmed that the military was using the warehouse, which is located across from a farm where civilians live and work. As researchers surveyed damage to residential and public buildings in Kharkiv and villages in the Donbass and east of Mykolaiv, they heard gunfire from nearby Ukrainian military positions. In Bakhmut, several residents said the Ukrainian military was using a building barely 20 meters across the street from the high-rise. On May 18, a Russian rocket hit the front of the building, partially destroying five apartments and damaging nearby buildings.

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“..saying there is “no proof” that weapons entering his country are unaccounted for, despite similar warnings from the Russian government, Europol, Canada, the CIA and a number of US Republicans..”

CBS Caves Into Ukrainian Pressure On Weapons Revelations (RT)

CBS News has pulled a documentary and amended a story featuring claims that 70% of foreign weapons never make it to the front lines in Ukraine. The changes were made amid an outcry from the Ukrainian government and its supporters. The documentary originally featured an interview with Jonas Ohman, the founder of a Lithuania-based organization supplying the Ukrainian military. Ohman told CBS that getting foreign weapons to Ukrainian troops involves navigating a network of “power lords, oligarchs [and] political players,” and that of all the aid arriving at the border in Poland, “kind of like 30% of it reaches its final destination.” Amnesty International’s Donatella Rovera also appeared in the film, saying that “there is really no information as to where [the weapons are] going at all.”

The documentary was released online on Thursday, and was set to air on CBS on Sunday evening. Pro-Ukrainian social media accounts hounded CBS over the weekend, accusing the American network of spreading “Russian propaganda. ”Ukrainian presidential adviser Mikhail Podoliak waded in, saying there is “no proof” that weapons entering his country are unaccounted for, despite similar warnings from the Russian government, Europol, Canada, the CIA and a number of US Republicans. The documentary was pulled from CBS’ website on Sunday night, and Ohman’s quote removed from a text version of the story. Atop this story, CBS placed a note saying that arms deliveries have “significantly improved” since its filming in April, and that the US sent a senior military official to Kiev in recent days “for arms control and monitoring.”

Ohman’s organization issued a statementsaying that the documentary took his words “out of context,” but did not deny that 70% of incoming military aid was going missing in April. Weapons were not being “stolen” or “sold on the black market,” the organization explained, but ending up in the hands of “different power players” attempting to “solidify their positions.”Who these players were was left unexplained. CBS said that it is “updating” its documentary and will air the edited version at a later date. Rovera, already slated by the Ukrainian government and its supporters over a recent Amnesty report accusing Kiev of placing weapons in civilian areas in violation of humanitarian law, also attempted to backpedal.

In a Twitter post on Sunday, she claimed that the responsibility for tracking arms shipments lies with the states providing the weapons, not with Ukraine. The Ukrainian government welcomed the CBS retraction. Foreign Minister Dmitry Kuleba nevertheless declared that the US network had “misled a huge audience by sharing unsubstantiated claims and damaging trust in supplies of vital military aid to a nation resisting aggression and genocide.” “There should be an internal investigation into who enabled this and why,” he concluded. Others criticized the changes, which journalist Max Blumenthal said were made following “a coordinated freakout by the Ukraine lobby.”

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As Ukraine accuses Russia of targeting a plant they already control, with missiles. Easier to just pull a switch or two?!

Russia Accuses Ukraine Of ‘Nuclear Terrorism’ (RT)

Ukrainian troops have committed “a new act of nuclear terrorism” by continuing to shell the Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant, the Russian Defense Ministry said on Monday. The nuclear plant, Europe’s largest, in southern Ukraine was seized by Russian forces in late February, when Moscow launched its military operation in the neighboring state. The facility continues to operate under Russian control with Ukrainian personnel. In a daily briefing, Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Lieutenant General Igor Konashenkov said that Ukraine’s 44th Artillery Brigade fired at the plant on Sunday from the village of Marganets on the opposite side of the large Kakhovka water reservoir.

The shelling damaged a high-voltage power line, causing a short circuit at the plant, Konashenkov said. He added that a fire broke out at the facility, which was then put out. According to the Russian Defense Ministry, it was the second time Ukrainian shelling has caused a fire and a partial power outage at the plant since Friday. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters that the attacks on the nuclear facility could have “catastrophic consequences for a huge territory, including the territory of Europe.” “We hope that countries which have an absolute influence on the Ukrainian leadership will use this influence to rule out such shelling,” Peskov said.

Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky accused Russia of shelling the Zaporozhye plant on Friday. “Russian nuclear terror requires a stronger response from the international community,” he tweeted, also warning about a potential nuclear disaster. Ukraine and the US previously accused Russian soldiers of using the plant as cover in the fight against Ukrainian troops. Russia has rejected these claims. UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres condemned the “suicidal” attacks on the plant, expressing hope that international inspectors will be able to access the facility soon.

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Blue states start boycotting red states. Civil War here we come.

Time for a Red-State NATO-like Alliance on Boycotts (Turley)

“An attack on one is an attack on all.” That reference to Article 5 of the NATO treaty is a virtual mantra in Washington these days as “the bedrock of peace and security in Europe for over half a century.” But the benefits of such deterrence should not be lost on another group under increasing threat for their political alliances: America’s red states. From California to Illinois, legislators are moving to boycott any state contracts with businesses in states with anti-LGBTQ legislation or restrictive abortion laws. At the same time, many Democratic leaders are pressuring companies to boycott red states too. This past week, California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) called upon Hollywood production companies to stop filming in states such as Georgia or Oklahoma with strict anti-abortion laws.

In Georgia, Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams has warned that companies will cut off ties with such states, including her own, if they do not change their laws. (Abrams previously was criticized by conservatives for fueling the boycott of her own state which led to the withdrawal of the All-Star Game from Atlanta over election reform laws.) Such campaigns have succeeded, particularly with private companies. Indeed, in both restricting speech and boycotting states, the left has found greater success with private companies than with voters in pushing their agenda. The New York Times warned pro-life states that they risk their “competitive edge” in the market if they do not change their laws to conform with blue-state views. The boycott threats have been growing since 2016, when North Carolina was targeted for passing a bill limiting bathroom access by biological gender.

The point of these campaigns is to pressure state officials to ignore the will of a majority of their citizens and pass laws to appeal to corporations and other states in a competitive market. Such boycotts by private citizens or groups are an important form of political speech; various state laws barring state contracts with those who support boycotts of Israel, for example, have been struck down as unconstitutional, although an appellate court recently upheld an Arkansas law. However, states or companies engaging in such boycotts is a different matter. Many consumers do not want companies like Disney to engage in political debates over issues like transgender rights. One poll showed 67 percent opposed corporate opposition to an “anti-grooming” law, a view that appears to be impacting Disney.

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Bunch of cowards.

Australian Labor Party & Assange: Burying the Politics (Tranter)

The difficulty for the Australian Labor government in deciding how to respond to the Julian Assange case is that once a prosecution is characterised as a political prosecution then, by its nature, there can be no expectation of due process. The U.S.-U.K. Extradition Treaty forbids extradition in the case of “political offences.” Former Australian High Commissioner to the U.K. George Brandis — who was commissioner for almost the entirety of Assange’s Belmarsh imprisonment since 2019 — doesn’t agree that Assange is a political prisoner. The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) and its new Minister Penny Wong have consistently stated a view that the case is not political but purely a legal matter: “Australia is not a party to Julian Assange’s case, nor can the Australian government intervene in the legal matters of another country.”

However, the most vocally outspoken Labor MP on the Assange case has now thrown that position on its head. “This is a political case, Labor MP Julian Hill told Consortium News in a video interview on July 28. “It is a political decision to extradite. And we’ve conveyed our view to the U.K. government regarding that. And it’s also a political decision in the U.S.” The government suggesting its hands are tied as Australia is “not a party” to the Assange case and they can’t intervene in “legal matters,” ignores the evident truths that the Assange case is indeed political, that its result will have global political consequences and that a pathway exists for a political intervention towards a political resolution.

Labor also strains to maintain credibility in its stated expectations of Assange receiving fair and humane treatment, on the one hand, and on the other remaining silent on the findings of Nils Melzer, the then-U.N. special rapporteur on torture, who had found Assange had suffered both psychological torture and political persecution. There has also been a silence on the extraordinary acts of the U.S. intelligence agencies, in particular the fact that Assange’s legally privileged conversations and papers were recorded and handed to U.S. intelligence agencies, and also on the C.I.A.’s plans to kidnap or assassinate Assange.

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Ukrainians migrating from Zelensky controlled areas to Russian controlled #Kherson

 

 

 

 


The Himalayan Vulture

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

Jul 282022
 


Pablo Picasso Houses 1937

 

Kiev Threatens To Attack Russian Territory (RT)
Former Russian President Presents Future Map Of Ukraine (RT)
Flaws in EU Gas Rationing Plan Revealed (RT)
German Mayors Want Nord Stream 2 Opened (RT)
The National Tragedy of Hunter Biden’s Laptop (Lee Smith)
New Dutch Minister No Longer Rules Out Compulsory Buy-out Of Farmers (AD)
A Recession by Any Other Name (Magness)
No, The Economy Will NOT Be OK (Denninger)
The Small Print That Destroyed America (Tucker)
Inventing Diagnoses to Cover Up Vaccine Injury (CHD)
How the CDC Coordinated With Big Tech To Censor Americans (WFB)

 

 

 

 

Stephen F. Cohen and John Mearsheimer
https://twitter.com/i/status/1552256839043219459

 

 

 

 

Neom is being built in Saudi Arabia.

 

 

 

 

“..Moscow might respond with a “massive strike” targeting the Ukrainian leadership if that happened..”

Kiev Threatens To Attack Russian Territory (RT)

Kiev will not hesitate to strike Russian territories if it deems it necessary, Aleksey Danilov, the head of Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council, said during a live broadcast on Wednesday. The security council closely follows all the missile and air strikes Russia launches against Ukraine, Danilov said, adding that Ukrainian authorities are well aware of all the locations in Russia from which the attacks have been carried out. Kiev possesses “enough political will” to order a strike against these targets if such a need arises, he added. “If needed … anyone [in the government] will act without hesitation and sign anything that needs to be signed to destroy these objects,”Danilov said.

The security council head also stated that Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky’s words about Ukraine retaliating against the locations from which the strikes are launched serves as “proof” of Kiev’s determination. Earlier, some Ukrainian officials said that Kiev forces may hit targets on the Crimean Peninsula or the Crimean Bridge, which they consider to be a key supply route for Russian forces. Ukraine’s military intelligence spokesman, Vadim Skibitskiy, claimed that Crimea could be targeted by US-supplied M142 HIMARS and M270 MLRS multiple launch rocket systems. Moscow responded by saying that Ukraine would pay a heavy price if it decided to strike Crimea. Russia’s former president, Dmitry Medvedev, said in mid-July that Moscow might respond with a “massive strike” targeting the Ukrainian leadership if that happened.

The US and its allies previously appeared to be reluctant to supply Ukraine with longer-range weapons capable of striking targets deep inside Russia as they were concerned about a potential escalation of the conflict. Washington has not yet agreed to send tactical ballistic missiles with a distance of up to 300 kilometers to Ukraine. Such missiles can be used by the US-made HIMARS multiple rocket launchers the US handed over to Kiev. However, according to the spokesman for the army of the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR), Eduard Basurin, Ukrainian forces may have already received 300km-range HIMARS missiles. DPR troops have found pieces of munitions with a range of 110 kilometers to 120 kilometers, which meant that Kiev could have the 300km-missiles as well, Basurin told the Russian media last week.

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“Seven regions in the West have been annexed by Poland, and three in the southwest by Hungary and Romania, respectively. Everything else is marked “Russia.”

Former Russian President Presents Future Map Of Ukraine (RT)

Ukraine is more likely to be reduced to Kiev and its surroundings than to ever encompass Crimea and the Donbass republics, former Russian president Dmitry Medvedev said Wednesday on his Telegram channel. The one-time president and long-time prime minister who now heads the national security council also posted two maps helpfully illustrating his argument. The first map showed Ukraine in borders prior to the US-backed coup in 2014, including Crimea and the two eastern regions of Donetsk and Lugansk. A month after the militants backed by Washington seized power in Kiev, Crimea voted to rejoin Russia, while the two Donbass regions declared independence. “In the mind of the president of Ukraine, damaged by psychotropic substances, this is what the map of his country’s bright future will look like,” Medvedev wrote on Telegram.

“Western analysts believe it will look like this, actually,” he said, posting a second map. On it, “Ukraine” is reduced to Kiev and its surroundings. Seven regions in the West have been annexed by Poland, and three in the southwest by Hungary and Romania, respectively. Everything else is marked “Russia.” He did not specify which Western experts may have envisioned such a partition.

The Ukrainian government has repeatedly rejected any possibility of territorial concessions, insisting that Kiev’s objectives were a “capitulation” of Russia and “reintegration” of Donbass and Crimea. Medvedev served as president of Russia between 2008 and 2012, and then as prime minister until 2020, when he was put in charge of the national security council. Over the course of the conflict in Ukraine, he has made a name for himself with colorful Telegram posts. Just this month, he warned Kiev of “Judgment Day”if they attacked Crimea and offered a list of “Russian sins,” followed up by those of the West.

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Lip service solidarity.

Flaws in EU Gas Rationing Plan Revealed (RT)

The EU’s gas rationing plan approved on Tuesday may not stand the test of a cold winter, The Economist wrote on Wednesday. A “meagre” cut to gas consumption will not solve the continent’s problems, the publication wrote, referring to the plan that will see most EU nations voluntarily reduce their use of natural gas by 15% between August 1 and March 31 next year. The deal was struck as fears grow over a possible halt of Russian gas supplies. At the moment the Nord Stream 1 pipeline, a key artery that carries natural gas from Russia to Germany, is operating at 20% capacity. Russian energy giant Gazprom cites technical issues with turbines as the reason for the reduced flow. However, the EU believes that Moscow is using gas to exert political pressure on the bloc. An alternative route via Ukraine has been restricted by Kiev.

The main reason for the rationing is to “ensure that a shortfall of Russian gas does not leave homes unheated or factories shuttered”, The Economist writes, but according to the publication, its success largely depends on the weather. “If the coming winter is mild, the EU may scrape by. But if it is cold the bloc will have to prove that it can hold together when times are hard. Germany in particular will need to show solidarity with other member countries. It sits at the center of Europe’s network of gas pipelines. Will it, for instance, allow gas to flow to the Czech Republic to keep people from freezing there if that means its factories have to go on furlough?” the publication writes, adding that at the start of the coronavirus pandemic in 2020 some European countries, including Germany, imposed bans on exports of protective gear to avoid shortages at home.

The plan has several other weaknesses, The Economist notes, such as different levels of exposure to Russian gas among the nations. Before its approval, a number of countries including Italy, Hungary, Poland, Portugal and Spain voiced their concerns, saying that they had already cut consumption, citing a lack of connection to Europe’s gas pipeline network and the fact that decisions on energy are usually a national issue, Bloomberg wrote earlier. The approved plan came with some exemptions, with Spain and Portugal reportedly allowed to use just 7% less gas. Other concessions were made too but proved not enough to get the plan unanimous approval, with Hungary voting against it.

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“NS2 does not use Siemens turbines, and can be maintained regardless of the sanctions.”

German Mayors Want Nord Stream 2 Opened (RT)

Berlin’s policy of trying to give up imports of Russian natural gas is likely to create hardship and spark unrest, seven mayors from the German island of Ruegen wrote in a letter sent to the regional and federal governments on Wednesday. They also urged the federal government to allow gas imports via the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, given the current technical difficulties with Nord Stream 1 – something Berlin has steadfastly rejected. In the letter addressed to federal economy minister Robert Habeck and Manuela Schwesig, prime minister of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, the mayors “strongly condemn” the current conflict in Ukraine but urge the government to consider the damage its policy could do to the German population and the economy, according to the news agency DPA.

“We are of the opinion that the path taken by the federal government to disconnect from Russian energy sources is not the right one,” the seven mayors wrote. Initially drafted by the leaders of Bergen, Binz and Sassnitz, the letter was later signed by four more jurisdictions on Ruegen, Germany’s largest island and a popular tourist destination. Giving up gas imports from Russia would mean an explosion in the cost of living, which would lead to social instability and unrest that could get out of control, the mayors wrote, according to German media. Calls from the federal government to save energy – such as showering less and foregoing hot water – “defy understanding,” they added.

“As the mayors of this island, we don’t want to have to accept any further restrictions,” Sassnitz city manager Frank Kracht told the Mecklenburg-Vorpommern affiliate of the TV station NDR. Rejecting the proposals to expand the number of wind turbines near residential areas, calling them a health hazard, the mayors advocated “a general rethinking of the solution to the current problems in relations with Russia.” Among their suggestions was to get additional natural gas via the Nord Stream 2 pipeline. Finished in late 2021, the pipeline from Russia to Germany under the Baltic Sea was just waiting for the operating permit from Berlin – which was suspended indefinitely on February 22, two days before Russia sent troops into Ukraine.

NS2 was supposed to double the volume of Russian gas exports, but was delayed by US sanctions seeking to protect Ukraine’s gas transit earnings. Nord Stream 1, which continues to supply Germany with gas, is currently operating at only 20% capacity, due to maintenance requirements. Its operator, Gazprom, says several turbines at the Portovaya compressor station need servicing to maintain certification. The first one was held up by Canada, citing anti-Russian sanctions over the conflict in Ukraine, until Berlin intervened seeking an exemption. NS2 does not use Siemens turbines, and can be maintained regardless of the sanctions.

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Deep dive.

The National Tragedy of Hunter Biden’s Laptop (Lee Smith)

In September 2020, the repairman gave a copy of the hard drive to Rudolph Giuliani’s lawyer. The former New York City mayor had been investigating the Bidens’ work in Ukraine for nearly two years at that point after receiving a tip from a former federal prosecutor. Giuliani helped disseminate copies of the hard drive, one of which Maxey took to The Washington Post. Nine months after Maxey sat with Post reporters to explain the contents of the hard drive, the paper reported its own independent authentication of 22,000 emails in March of 2022. These included communications regarding a deal with a Chinese energy company that earned Hunter $5 million, and his work with Burisma, the Ukrainian energy firm that paid him $83,333 per month to sit on its board.

His father later boasted in public that he’d threatened to withhold a $1 billion loan guarantee to Ukraine unless the central government in Kyiv fired the prosecutor investigating Burisma. At roughly the same time The Washington Post authenticated these emails, The New York Times also verified communications found on Hunter Biden’s computer. So, have America’s two most prestigious newsprint organizations at last acknowledged that they were wrong to believe former intelligence officials who claimed the New York Post’s October 2020 reporting on the Biden laptop was Russian disinformation? Of course not. They were and remain proud of their role in helping push Trump out of Washington. According to one survey, one out of six Biden voters said that had they known about Hunter’s laptop in time, they wouldn’t have voted for his father.

What concerned the prestige press wasn’t that they’d missed a big story—or that they’d participated in a campaign run by U.S. intelligence services to prevent American voters from learning about the extent of the Bidens’ political and moral corruption. Rather, they were worried that an even bigger story about the Bidens might be coming down the road. Maxey says he called the Post in March to say he was taking the hard drive to Switzerland to meet with a cyber expert named Vincent Kaufmann who told him he thought he could retrieve material deleted from the laptop. The Times published its story two days after Maxey landed in Zurich, and the Post published its own “investigation” two weeks later, pronouncing some of the emails genuine while claiming it was hard to tell with others. As a longtime platform for U.S. intelligence operations—and owned by the same man, Jeff Bezos, who owns the cloud computing technology that Amazon Web Services uses to store the CIA’s information—the Post wanted to help the White House get ahead of potential problems.

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Google translate. Rutte is blowing up his own country.

New Dutch Minister No Longer Rules Out Compulsory Buy-out Of Farmers (AD)

Where the cabinet previously spoke of ‘starting a conversation on the farm about new possibilities’, there is now a completely different tone. The new minister Christianne van der Wal no longer excludes compulsory buy-out of farmers. It still sounded friendly in the coalition agreement. “We will start a conversation on the farm to look for the possibilities together,” the cabinet said in a sweet note in mid-December. When Van der Wal is asked in a debate with the House of Representatives on Thursday what she actually means by that sentence, she says that it will certainly be difficult for farmers who run a business from generation to generation, who just want to continue with their business. . But she also emphasizes: ,,I want to tell the honest story. And that is that this is not feasible in every area.”

The government wants to encourage as many farmers as possible to participate voluntarily in reducing nitrogen emissions. But meanwhile, heavier terms are also sounding, such as ‘expropriation’ and ‘not escaping’ from forced sale. The new VVD minister takes a harder tone. The Minister for Nature and Nitrogen expects that compulsory buy-out of farmers cannot be avoided in several cases. “It’s a last resort, but at the same time it’s a realism that we can’t always avoid it. I really can’t rule it out,” she admits. The liberal politician wants to work with a reward system in 2022 and 2023. The sooner you decide to stop, the higher the compensation. After that period it becomes less friendly. “The honest story is that you cannot escape expropriation, if the voluntariness is not there.”

Within a few weeks she will send a plan to the House, stating how she wants to tackle the nitrogen problem. Maybe she will peek at the neighbors for that. Two weeks ago, the Flemish government declared that the most polluting livestock farms must close by 2025. That is about sixty companies. More than a hundred other livestock farms have to significantly reduce their nitrogen emissions. Nitrogen is a major problem in both the Netherlands and Flanders, following a court ruling. Only in the Netherlands this is a multiple of the number of farmers in Flanders.

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All they have is wordgames. AKA You’re on your own.

A Recession by Any Other Name (Magness)

The Biden administration appears to be preparing for a recession—or rather, for news of one. Rather than tackling the underlying economic problems, the White House is playing word games. Economists have long defined a recession as “a period in which real GDP declines for at least two consecutive quarters,” to quote the popular economics textbook by Nobel laureates Paul Samuelson and William Nordhaus. This definition isn’t perfect, but it describes almost every downturn since World War II. With expectations of low or even negative growth for the first two quarters of 2022, President Biden’s Council of Economic Advisers has been trying to blunt the news by disavowing this textbook definition. It is “neither the official definition nor the way economists evaluate the state of the business cycle,” reads a post on the White House website.

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen endorsed the claim on NBC over the weekend. In place of the standard economic definition of a recession, administration officials point to the business-cycle dating committee of the National Bureau of Economic Research as the “official recession scorekeeper.” It’s a highly convenient move for them. While the nonpartisan NBER employs a robust set of indicators to pinpoint recessions, it does so retrospectively. The great recession of 2007-09, for example, had already been under way for a year before the NBER released its determination. Sometimes recessions end by the time NBER classifies them, and this built-in delay limits the utility of NBER scorekeeping for real-time policy decisions.

The White House’s attempt to wordsmith its way around a recession shows the dangers of politicizing economic terms. Mr. Biden’s economic advisers are trying to buy time by exploiting NBER’s otherwise defensible methodology. They hope doing so will insulate the administration from the electoral backlash in the event of a downturn. There is no federal statute that appoints the NBER as the official arbiter of recessions. Quite the contrary, the federal government has historically followed the conventional textbook definition. The Gramm-Rudman-Hollings Act of 1985, which attempted to rein in the deficit by triggering mandatory sequestrations in federal agencies, introduced a recessionary escape clause for tough economic times. If the Congressional Budget Office projected a recession, Congress could fast-track a vote to suspend the sequestrations. The law defined a recession as a period when “real economic growth is projected or estimated to be less than zero with respect to each of any two consecutive quarters.”

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“Since nobody can ever consume more than 100% of anything this means that all such attempts, unless abandoned and reversed lead to economic disaster.”

No, The Economy Will NOT Be OK (Denninger)

No, this is not transitory. And since we’re headed for political season let me remind you of the sordid tale that led us here. We elected Donald Trump as President. Donald Trump deliberately, from his first day, pushed “easy money” policies that were in fact how he levered his real estate empire to “success.” Easy money policies are a scam, but a very easy to run scam that appears to be “great” for a while. The reason is simple. Take a “model economy” with, for example, GDP of $100,000. Presume 10% of the GDP is out in debt ($10,000) and further presume that the rate of interest, on average, is 2%. At the same time presume the nominal (that is, “in dollars”) growth rate of GDP is 3%. This looks “safe”, right? Well, it is if the amount of debt remains the same.

But it won’t because the rate of interest is less than the growth rate, that is, you’re paying people to borrow into existence credit that has nothing behind it “on the come” that the economy will expand, and they will do exactly that. sIf the amount of debt expands at 4% while the economy expands at 3% no matter the rate of interest above zero interest expense will eventually consume all economic output. Since nobody can ever consume more than 100% of anything this means that all such attempts, unless abandoned and reversed lead to economic disaster. This is not a matter of policy or debate it is mathematical fact and cannot be changed any more than 2 + 2 can made equal to anything other than 4. Now there is an argument for this sort of policy during recessions; in fact this was Keynes’ argument for attempting to level economic conditions: You spend in excess (that is, in deficit) during recessions, and you tax in excess during good times. This retards the economy during good times and boosts it during bad.

The problem: During good times nobody will do the necessary thing to balance the system; Keynes was a fool in that he believed in that which was impossible, which is to expect politicians to voluntarily screw themselves out of a job. Trump knew all of this and that borrowing at below the rate of economic expansion, whatever it is, screws someone. He knew it because he nearly blew his nascent empire up early in his career getting levered up into the maw of a recession, which came within an inch of destroying him economically. He was bailed out, which informed his future actions decades later when he had the power to bail himself and his political friends out as President. It is a fact that Trump ran record deficits during an economic expansion and he did it on purpose with the full consent and in fact authorship of Congress. That’s because under our Constitution Congress must do that in that all spending bills must originate in the US House.

That is, it’s not Bidenflation to start — it was Trumpflation. Biden and the Democrats, emboldened with what Trump got away with and the public clamor for more, piled it on even deeper once he got into office. But this time, as with all other times, it takes time for that to filter through to prices. Nixon created the conditions under which Ford and then Carter (and all of us) suffered; it was Nixon’s wage and price controls, along with his (according to historians) literal assault on Burns, the chair of The Fed at the time, that led to ruinous stagflation under Ford and Carter’s Presidency.

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” It’s not entirely clear, to me in any case, that Trump knew what was happening even then. He had a sense that he was doing something to stop the spread but he didn’t know entirely what.”

The Small Print That Destroyed America (Tucker)

In a maddening interview yesterday, Anthony Fauci performed his usual song and dance when faced with even the most mild questioning. He stonewalled in his trademarked way. He spoke in long, drawn-out sentences, emphasizing the word consonants, punctuated by pauses and silences that convey the sense of precision without the reality. He strung together terms that seem vaguely scientific which intimidated his interviewers into an overly cautious pose. “Oh wow, I’m interviewing a very powerful person,” the interviewer thinks, “so I had better not say anything wrong!” He’s been pulling this trick for 40 years. He is very good at it.

In this interview, several messages stands out: 1) in retrospect, we should have locked down even more, 2) he never pushed lockdowns; he was only passing on CDC guidance, and 3) he is utterly and completely blameless for all things, particularly in funding gain-of-function research which, in any case, is not responsible for the creation of the virus in Wuhan. The first part is startling because many of us have had the sense that lockdowns are in disrepute. Far from it: Fauci’s message is that next time, the lockdowns will be harder and longer. And there certainly will be more. The third part I feel sure will be revealed in time. The fear that the virus escaped from the lab is likely what drove the lockdowns agenda. What intrigues me the most is the second part, the claim that he never ordered lockdowns. This was the CDC and he only served as messenger. Everyone else is to blame for anything that went wrong.

In a second interview the same day, Fauci says this explicitly: “All I have ever done, if you go back and look at everything I’ve ever done, was to recommend common-sense, good CDC-recommended public health policies that have saved millions of lives. If you want to investigate me for that, go ahead.” I’m going back to the March 16, 2020, press conference at which Fauci, Deborah Birx, and Donald Trump are announcing a fundamental change of life in the United States, one that would disregard all normal rights and liberties. It’s not entirely clear, to me in any case, that Trump knew what was happening even then. He had a sense that he was doing something to stop the spread but he didn’t know entirely what.

This has always puzzled me. It’s one thing for him to be hornswoggled into greenlighting the destruction of the economy that was booming and roaring under his administration. That’s bad enough. But to be confused even about the details of what he was ordering that day is next-level stuff. The following exchange occurred that day. Trump is asked whether restaurants and other venues should close. Trump responds: “Right now we don’t have an order one way or the other. We don’t have an order, but I think it’s probably better that you don’t [go to restaurants].” From that, I gather that Trump believed that he was not forcing anything on anyone. A reporter asks for a clarification: “Telling people to avoid restaurants and bars is a different thing than saying that bars and restaurants should shut down over the next 15 days.

So why was it seen as being imprudent or not necessarily to take that additional step offered at additional guidance?” At this point, Trump demurs and turns over the microphone to Deborah Birx, who must not have been paying attention and says something vague about the virus living on hard surfaces. At this point, Fauci interrupts and says: “I just want, there’s an answer to this.” Fauci says the following: “The small print here. It’s really small print. ‘In states with evidence of community transmission, bars, restaurants, food courts, gyms and other indoor and outdoor venues where groups of people congregate should be closed.’”

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1899-2022.

Inventing Diagnoses to Cover Up Vaccine Injury (CHD)

So-called “fact-checkers” are having to work double-time to come up with ways to deny the undeniable fact that COVID-19 vaccines are causing injuries and deaths on a massive scale. The shot pushers and their media enablers have taken cover-up tactics to absurd new heights by, for example, chalking up the rash of fatal heart attacks and overnight deaths in athletes and young adults to a fluky condition referred to variously as “sudden adult death syndrome” or “sudden arrhythmic death syndrome” (SADS). What the COVID-19 vaccine-injured do not necessarily recognize, however, is the pretense that post-vaccination injuries and deaths are just “sad coincidences” — far from being unique to the pandemic jabs — is a trick as old as vaccination itself.

Facilitated by well-honed semantic and statistical flimflam, public health officials’ core strategy for perpetuating their fiction is to profess innocence — making unabashedly unsubstantiated pronouncements about vaccine safety, on the one hand, while on the other hand, declaring themselves “baffled” by ailments that emerge in the aftermath of a given vaccine’s rollout. In an astonishingly frank and prescient book, “The Fallacy of Vaccination,” published in 1899, Dr. Alexander Wilder called attention to the “growing conviction” among “profounder thinkers and observers” that vaccination was not only “utterly useless as a preventive” but “actually the means of disseminating disease afresh where it is performed.” Wilder noted, “whenever a vaccinator or corps of vaccinators set out upon a vaccinating crusade, there follows very generally a number of deaths from … maladies which have been induced by the operation. …”

Wilder also blew the whistle on the suppression and concealment of vaccine adverse events and deaths, describing a fellow physician’s urging of his “professional brethren to be slow to publish fatal cases of smallpox after vaccination” and outlining other shenanigans that sound all too familiar today: “Occasionally … a death by vaccination is published, and immediately the effort is put forth assiduously to make it to be believed that it was from some other cause. The statistics of smallpox, purporting to distinguish between vaccinated and unvaccinated persons, are too often not quite trustworthy. Many persons who have been vaccinated are falsely reported as unvaccinated. “Even when death occurs as the result of vaccination, the truth is concealed and the case represented as scarlet fever, measles, erysipelas [bacterial skin infection], or some ‘masked’ disease, in order to prevent too close questioning.”

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It’s all for your own good.

How the CDC Coordinated With Big Tech To Censor Americans (WFB)

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention coordinated with social media companies and Google to censor users who expressed skepticism or criticism of COVID-19 vaccines, according to a trove of internal communications obtained by America First Legal and shared exclusively with the Washington Free Beacon. Over the course of at least six months, starting in December 2020, CDC officials regularly communicated with personnel at Twitter, Facebook, and Google over “vaccine misinformation.” At various times, CDC officials would flag specific posts by users on social media platforms such as Twitter as “example posts.” In one email to a CDC staffer, a Twitter employee said he is “looking forward to setting up regular chats” with the agency.

Other emails show the scheduling of meetings with the CDC over how to best police alleged misinformation about COVID-19 vaccines. Although many of the posts flagged by the CDC contained false information about the COVID-19 vaccines, the efforts to police misinformation also resulted in mistaken acts of censorship. An April 2021 email from a CDC staffer to Facebook states that the “algorithms that Facebook and other social media networks are apparently using to screen out posting by sources of vaccine misinformation are also apparently screening out valid public health messaging, including [Wyoming] Health communications.” The communications reveal a high level of coordination between the government and tech industry during the pandemic and raise questions about the extent to which other private companies are working with the federal government to censor the public.

The Biden administration has faced criticism for engaging in what some have called “Orwellian” practices, such as the establishment of the Department of Homeland Security Disinformation Governance Board. The Free Beacon reported that the now-shuttered disinformation board arranged a meeting with a Twitter executive who blocked users from sharing stories about Hunter Biden’s laptop. The CDC’s effort to police alleged disinformation expanded to other federal agencies as well. An internal March 2021 email from a senior CDC staffer states “we are working on [sic] project with Census to leverage their infrastructure to identify and monitor social media for vaccine misinformation.”

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Gonzalo : The Persecution of Alina Lipp and Graham Phillips

 

 

 

 

Wonderful dog life
https://twitter.com/i/status/1552051138530349062

 

 

Old dogs

 

 

Sculpt
https://twitter.com/i/status/1552260484681928704

 

 

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

 

 

 

Jun 042021
 


Pieter Bruegel the Elder Dulle Griet, also known as Mad Meg 1563

 

Inside the Fight to Uncover COVID-19’s Origins (Vanity Fair)
How Amateur Sleuths Broke the Wuhan Lab Story and Embarrassed the Media (NW)
Fauci Kept Funding Daszak’s Experiments after Trump Canceled Grant (NF)
Fauci Defends China, Doubles Down On Animal Origins Of Covid (DM)
Ex-CDC Director Threatened For Saying Covid-19 Likely Originated In A Lab (DM)
Where’s The Tar and Feathers? (Denninger)
Covid-19 Cases Hit Lowest Point In US Since Pandemic Began (Axios)
EU Purchases Its First Monoclonal Antibodies Cocktail For Covid-19 (RT)
The Netherlands Used Children As A Weapon In The Fight Against Corona (AD)
Delhi Reports Over 1,000 Cases Of ‘Black Fungus’ Amid Shortage Of Drugs (RT)
Nord Stream 2 To Cost Kiev $3 Billion In Transit Fees A Year – Zelensky (RT)
Russia’s $186 Billion Sovereign Wealth Fund Dumps All Dollar Assets (ZH)

 

 

When both Vanity Fair and Newsweek come out with in-depth articles about the very same topic (in this case how the DRASTIC group reported the lab leak theory), at the very same moment, that makes me nervous.

What also makes me nervous is the one-dimensional attention for Fauci. Much as I dislike the man, it starts to feel as if others are hiding behind him.

 

 

“Ivermectin is an off-patent drug that is one of the most widely used drugs in the world, and we know it is able to reduce Covid-19 symptoms at any stage of the disease by about 90%, so there is no need for vaccines.”

– Michael Yeadon, former CSO of Pfizer

 

 

 

Kory

 

 

“The idea of a lab leak first came to NSC officials not from hawkish Trumpists but from Chinese social media users..”

Inside the Fight to Uncover COVID-19’s Origins (Vanity Fair)

The idea of a lab leak first came to NSC officials not from hawkish Trumpists but from Chinese social media users, who began sharing their suspicions as early as January 2020. Then, in February, a research paper coauthored by two Chinese scientists, based at separate Wuhan universities, appeared online as a preprint. It tackled a fundamental question: How did a novel bat coronavirus get to a major metropolis of 11 million people in central China, in the dead of winter when most bats were hibernating, and turn a market where bats weren’t sold into the epicenter of an outbreak? The paper offered an answer: “We screened the area around the seafood market and identified two laboratories conducting research on bat coronavirus.”

The first was the Wuhan Center for Disease Control and Prevention, which sat just 280 meters from the Huanan market and had been known to collect hundreds of bat samples. The second, the researchers wrote, was the Wuhan Institute of Virology. The paper came to a staggeringly blunt conclusion about COVID-19: “the killer coronavirus probably originated from a laboratory in Wuhan…. Regulations may be taken to relocate these laboratories far away from city center and other densely populated places.” Almost as soon as the paper appeared on the internet, it disappeared, but not before U.S. government officials took note.

By then, Matthew Pottinger had approved a COVID-19 origins team, run by the NSC directorate that oversaw issues related to weapons of mass destruction. A longtime Asia expert and former journalist, Pottinger purposefully kept the team small, because there were so many people within the government “wholly discounting the possibility of a lab leak, who were predisposed that it was impossible,” said Pottinger. In addition, many leading experts had either received or approved funding for gain-of-function research. Their “conflicted” status, said Pottinger, “played a profound role in muddying the waters and contaminating the shot at having an impartial inquiry.”

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The bat lady returns.

How Amateur Sleuths Broke the Wuhan Lab Story and Embarrassed the Media (NW)

If there is a moment when the DRASTIC team coalesced into something more than its disparate parts, it would be this thread. In real time, for all the world to see, they worked through the data, tested various hypotheses, corrected each other, and scored some direct hits. The key facts quickly came together. The genetic sequence for RaTG13 perfectly matched a small piece of genetic code posted as part of a paper written by Shi Zhengli years earlier, but never mentioned again. The code came from a virus the WIV had found in a Yunnan bat. Connecting key details in the two papers with old news stories, the DRASTIC team determined that RaTG13 had come from a mineshaft in Mojiang County, in Yunnan Province, where six men shoveling bat guano in 2012 had developed pneumonia. Three of them died.

DRASTIC wondered if that event marked the first cases of human beings being infected with a precursor of SARS-CoV-2—perhaps RaTG13 or something like it. In a profile in Scientific American, Shi Zhengli acknowledged working in a mineshaft in Mojiang County where miners had died. But she avoided connecting it to RaTG13 (an omission she had made in her scientific papers as well), claiming that a fungus in the cave had killed the miners.

[..] One of those scientists was Alina Chan, a molecular biologist at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard who recognized the value of the information DRASTIC was producing and began to interpret it for scientists and nonscientists alike in crisp explainers on Twitter that made her a star science communicator. Chan acknowledged the group’s accomplishments in a long thread on Twitter. “Without the work done by the DRASTIC team, I don’t really know where we would be today with the origins of covid-19,” she wrote, adding, “The work of these outsiders…has had a measurable impact on the scientific discourse.” That scientific discourse jumped tracks on January 6, 2021, when the University of Washington virologist Jesse Bloom, one of the country’s most respected COVID-19 researchers, became the first major scientific figure to publicly legitimize DRASTIC’s contributions.

“Yes, I follow the work,” he tweeted, sending tremors through the scientific establishment. “I don’t agree [with] all of it, but some parts seem important & correct.” Bloom singled out Mona Rahalkar’s paper on the Mojiang mine, then added that in the early days of the pandemic, “I thought lab escape very unlikely. Based on subsequent work, I now say quite plausible.” Other scientists pressured Bloom to reconsider, but he held his ground, and the wall of silence began to crumble. In May, 17 scientists from Harvard, Yale, MIT, Stanford, and other leading institutions, including Chan, joined Bloom in a letter in Science calling for a thorough investigation of the Wuhan lab. On nearly the same day, The Seeker struck again. Visiting a database hosted by China’s Ministry of Science and Technology, he searched for all theses supervised by Shi Zhengli. Boom. Three hits. “I got it on my first try,” he says. “Not sure why no one else thought of this before, but I guess no one was looking.”

If there had been any remaining doubt about the WIV’s pattern of deception, these new theses put it to rest. They indicated that the WIV researchers had never believed a fungus had killed the Mojiang miners, contradicting Shi’s remarks in Scientific American and elsewhere. In fact, WIV researchers had been so concerned about a new SARS-like outbreak that they’d tested the blood of neighboring villagers for other cases. And they had known the genetic sequences for the eight other SARS-like viruses from the mine—which could have helped researchers to understand more about SARS-CoV-2 in the early days —long before the pandemic started, and had kept the information to themselves, until DRASTIC called them out.

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THIS should be investigated. Fauci as a state within a state.

Fauci Kept Funding Daszak’s Experiments after Trump Canceled Grant (NF)

Peter Daszak, who studied controversial “gain of function” experiments on coronavirus elements in Wuhan, received $7.5 million from Anthony Fauci after Trump cancelled his grant. Last April, reports emerged that the EcoHealth Alliance, an organization run by one Peter Daszak, was involved in funding and collaborating with the Wuhan Institute of Virology, where researchers were examining coronaviruses extremely similar to the one behind the COVID-19 outbreak, and allegedly engaging in “gain of function” research relating to them. In an April 17th press conference, President Trump confirmed that a grant worth around $3.7 million since 2015 given to Daszak’s group by the National Institute for Health would be ended “very quickly” following the reports.

Only one week later on April 24th, all future funding for the EHA was cut, and they were ordered to stop spending the $369,819 remaining from its 2020 grant. “At this time, NIH does not believe that the current project outcomes align with the program goals and agency priorities,” Michael Lauer, the agency’s deputy director for extramural research, wrote in a letter to EcoHealth Alliance officials. From within the treasure trove of 3,200 pages of emails obtained from Anthony Fauci, one email can be found from Daszak, who thanked Fauci for dismissing the lab leak theory as being simply conspiratorial the day after President Trump announced the funding would be cut.

[..] Only a few months later in August, Fauci, who along with being put in charge of America’s response to COVID-19, is the director of the National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases, which is part of the NIH, helped confirm that Daszak’s organization would receive a new grant of $7.5 million to study coronaviruses as part of a new network. The CREID network, which contains 11 institutions including the EHA, “coincidentally” will continue to study the emergence of coronaviruses in Southeast Asia. Fauci said that the network will help “enable early warnings of emerging diseases wherever they occur, which will be critical to rapid responses,” while Daszak boasted that they will be working in rural hospitals, according to a statement, “in remote parts of Malaysia and Thailand to get to the front line of where the next pandemic is going to start.”

Video of Anthony Fauci announcing “NIH Lifts Funding Pause on Gain-Of-Function Research” at a NIAID Advisory Council meeting on January 29, 2018.

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That train has passed.

Fauci Defends China, Doubles Down On Animal Origins Of Covid (DM)

Dr. Anthony Fauci doubled down on claims that the coronavirus likely originated from an animal then was transmitted to humans in a Thursday morning interview on CNN, despite increasing speculation that it leaked from a China lab. Fauci, who served under former President Trump and President Joe Biden, continues to fight the idea that he downplayed theories that the virus originated in the Wuhan Institute of Virology after a trove of emails exchange at the beginning of the pandemic revealed he was warned about a potential lab leak. ‘I have always said and will say today to you … that I still believe the most likely origin is from an animal species to a human,’ Fauci, director of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said Thursday on CNN.

Although he said he’s keeping an open mind about the possibility of a lab leak, Fauci said it was ‘far-fetched’ to think the Chinese would kill their own people. ‘The idea, I think, is quite far-fetched that the Chinese deliberately engineered something so that they could kill themselves, as well as other people. I think that’s a bit far out.’ In a separate Thursday morning interview on MSNBC, Fauci said they want to definitively find the cause of the coronavirus pandemic – whatever that origin is – but pointing the finger at China isn’t going to help. ‘It’s in China’s interest to find out exactly what it is,’ Fauci said. ‘Obviously, you want openness and cooperation. One of the ways to get it is not to be accusatory. Try to get a forensic, scientific and investigational approach. I think the accusatory part about it is only going to make (China) pull back more.’

Fauci was asked during the MSNBC interview if he thought it was in China’s best interest to hide information if the origin was a lab leak or if it was designing a weapon. He sidestepped, saying no matter what he says, ‘it will be taken completely out of context,’ which he said has already happened after more than 3,200 of his emails from January to June 2020 were obtained and published by Buzzfeed on Tuesday. The emails showed leading virus experts warned him COVID-19 may have been created in a lab while he publicly played such claims down.

GoF

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“The former director of the Centers for Disease Control received death threats from fellow scientists..”

Ex-CDC Director Threatened For Saying Covid-19 Likely Originated In A Lab (DM)

The former director of the Centers for Disease Control received death threats from fellow scientists after he said during a TV interview that he believed COVID-19 originated in a lab, according to an interview released Thursday. Robert Redfield, who served as the CDC director under Donald Trump when the pandemic began, told CNN on March 26 that he thought the most likely ‘etiology of this pathogen in Wuhan was from a laboratory – you know, escaped.’ He said he wasn’t insinuating that there was ill intent, but that was his opinion. After that 10-second sound bite, he told Vanity Fair he was ‘threatened and ostracized because I proposed another hypothesis.’ At the time, the Wuhan lab leak was widely considered a ‘fringe theory’ at best, in favor of transmission from an animal to a human.

The Vanity Fair article said ‘death threats flooded his inbox’ from strangers who said he was being racist to prominent scientists, even some he considered friends. One told him to ‘wither and die,’ Vanity Fair reported. ‘I expected it from politicians. I didn’t expect it from science,’ Redfield said. Stephen Goldstein, an evolutionary virologist at the University of Utah, wrote an opinion piece on Webpagetoday on April 5 shooting down Redfield’s assertions on CNN. ‘Questions are undoubtedly going to persist about the origin of SARS-CoV-2 until, and if, a definitive answer is uncovered (and perhaps beyond),’ Goldstein wrote. ‘Until then, it’s imperative that leaders in science, public health, and government continue to call for rigorous study and stick to the science of viral evolution and viral ecology in their public commentary. ‘One of the fundamental principles of a life in science is to admit what you don’t know, and never be afraid to look it up. That’s where Redfield falls short, unfortunately on a big stage.’

[..] The magazine outlined the first moments Redfield heard about a mysterious new pneumonia affecting people in a Wuhan market from Dr. George Fu Gao, head of the Chinese CDC, on January 3, 2020. Redfield told Vanity Fair that he thought it was odd that family clusters were getting sick, and Gao later told Redfield that many cases had nothing to do with the market. That’s when it became apparent the virus was jumping from person to person, and Redfield told Vanity Fair he immediately thought of the Wuhan Institute of Virology. He wanted to send researchers to the facility to rule it out, but the Chinese didn’t allow it, Vanity Fair reported. ‘A team could rule it out as a source of the outbreak in just a few weeks, by testing researchers there for antibodies,’ according to Vanity Fair.

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“All you need is for an entire profession involved in some very dangerous research to realize that they ****ed up and believe that through their ****up one percent or more of the population in their nation is about to die..”

Where’s The Tar and Feathers? (Denninger)

The so-called “MSM” isn’t even debating these parts of the email dump — they’re playing Ostrich instead, hoping they can bury it by “touting” all the “pressure” that was seen in the trove while ignoring that the archive damns not one man but entire professions including the vaccine/pharma connection. Yes, there is even evidence that the intentional refusal to look at and use existing drugs and the “decision” on how they were going to deal with this goes back that far, before the first American died. Bluntly put these people didn’t just ignore the evidence that accumulated by the summer months they literally ignored it all the way back to the start and thus it can be reasonably argued they are personally responsible for all of the deaths. If you want to know how you generate international hysteria you don’t need some cabal pulling a puppet string.

All you need is for an entire profession involved in some very dangerous research to realize that they ****ed up and believe that through their ****up one percent or more of the population in their nation is about to die with nothing they can do about it, and if it gets pinned on them as it should since they caused it every one of them deserves to be swinging from a rope. Oh, incidentally, Fauci also knew that masks in the general population were worthless. He pointed this out directly; that the virus was too small and would go right though it. His own words folks, as I’ve repeatedly pointed out but cannot say as “it’s against the consensus of experts”, according to Google, Facebook, Twitter and others, without being de-monetized, having videos pulled and risking being banhammered.

Now we know factually that Fauci stated this himself, so now the media and other “tech companies” are enforcing a position that the so-called “expert” generated with an intentional lie and they’ve maintained and forced that intentional lie for a year and are continuing to do so to this day. Now you know how the hysteria, cover-ups and outright lying happened. Now contaminate that with pharma money and you get what we’re doing now.

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This reads like a vaccine ad. “..the virus really is under control, nationwide and in every state, thanks almost entirely to the vaccines.”

But remember this graph, and remember they refused to use HCQ and ivermectin.

Covid-19 Cases Hit Lowest Point In US Since Pandemic Began (Axios)

The U.S. has brought new coronavirus infections down to the lowest level since March 2020, when the pandemic began. Nearly every week for the past 56 weeks, Axios has tracked the change — more often than not, the increase — in new COVID-19 infections. Those case counts are now so low, the virus is so well contained, that this will be our final weekly map. The U.S. averaged roughly 16,500 new cases per day over the past week, a 30% improvement over the week before. New cases declined in 43 states and held steady in the other seven. The official case counts haven’t been this low since Americans went into lockdown in March last year — when the pandemic was still new, no one knew how long this would go on, and inadequate testing meant that cases were undercounted.

Overall, roughly 33 million Americans — about 10% of the population — have tested positive for COVID-19. About 595,000 people have died from the virus in the U.S., making it deadlier for Americans than the past 80 years of wars and other armed military conflicts combined, including World War II. The U.S. largely failed to contain the virus until the vaccines arrived. Cities and businesses began shutting down last March. From there, the virus rolled into a second wave last summer, when cases climbed to over 65,000 per day, on average, and hospitals in many parts of the country said they were overwhelmed. That failure was then eclipsed in the winter, when hundreds of thousands of people per day were contracting the virus and deaths climbed over 3,000 per day for about a month.

But now, the virus really is under control, nationwide and in every state, thanks almost entirely to the vaccines. Just over half of American adults are now fully vaccinated, according to the CDC. Cases and deaths are still soaring around the world, especially in the developing world, and the Biden administration is facing consistently mounting pressure to export more vaccines, now that the U.S. has contained the virus. The U.S. was never able to control the virus without vaccines, and it still can’t. The risk is still about as high as it’s ever been for unvaccinated people, as the Washington Post recently reported. An average of about 500 Americans per day are still dying from COVID-19, almost all of them unvaccinated.

There will still be some localized outbreaks in the U.S., especially in areas where relatively few people are vaccinated. But they will likely be small, and vaccinated people will be protected. Over time, the immunity from vaccines will likely wane, which, together with new variants of the virus, will likely require booster shots to stay ahead of another outbreak. For now, though, the U.S. has finally gotten the virus down to a level that just about every expert agrees is safe. Fewer than 20,000 cases per day, spread across the U.S. population of 331.5 million people, is a relatively low number of cases, and that number continues to improve across the board.

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Why not simply get ivermectin? Too cheap?

EU Purchases Its First Monoclonal Antibodies Cocktail For Covid-19 (RT)

The European Union has announced the purchase of 55,000 doses of the Roche-Regeneron Covid-19 drug, marking its first foray into potential treatments involving a cocktail of monoclonal antibodies. The EU announced it secured the shipment of the doses on Wednesday, as the bloc seeks to expand its portfolio of drugs and explores potentially promising treatments that can help in the fight against the virus. The deal was agreed earlier this year but the details were only confirmed on Thursday by an EU spokesperson, who said 55,000 doses of the single-shot treatment had been purchased. Roche stated that the company’s contract will cover 37 countries in Europe, including the UK and other non-EU nations. The cost of the shipment has not been made public by the EU or the pharmaceutical companies.


While the deal agreed between the companies and the EU is for the drug’s infusion version, there is also a shot that has been tested and developed. The Roche-Regeneron treatment is still awaiting formal approval from the European Medicines Agency (EMA) before the shipment is dispatched, with formal authorization expected between August and October 2021. The EMA is currently in the process of conducting a rolling review of preliminary data. The Roche-Regeneron Covid-19 treatment has already been granted emergency US approval for patients with mild to moderate symptoms, with Washington ordering 1.5 million doses. The monoclonal antibodies treatment seeks to replicate or boost the body’s natural immune response, helping to support Covid-19 patients who are at high risk of developing severe disease.

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Google translate. Holland closed schools not to protect children, but to make parents stay home. Think about how crazy that is.

The Netherlands Used Children As A Weapon In The Fight Against Corona (AD)

Due to the Dutch corona policy to close schools and thus keep parents at home, children have been used as a means to fight the epidemic. Our cabinet receives that hard slap on the fingers today in the annual worldwide children’s rights report, the KidsRights Index. According to the makers, the Netherlands has set a very bad example internationally, by not even trying to keep schools open safely. With all the consequences that entails for the mental health of our youth. The corona guidelines from the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child have also been neglected. Youth has not been given any priority in Dutch policy, it sounds.

Statements by corona minister Hugo de Jonge, dated mid-December 2020, are presented as proof. Then De Jonge indeed mentioned on television as the reason why the cabinet decided to close the schools, that parents with children sitting at home will therefore start working from home more quickly. When parents take their children to school, that is another moment of contact, De Jonge explained at the time. “And we also learned from the first wave, when the schools were also closed, that the fact that primary education does not provide physical education also ensures that parents adhere better to another advice, namely: work from home as much as possible. ”, said the minister at the time.

“Children’s rights have been put in second place by the cabinet during corona time,” Marc Dullaert, founder of the international children’s rights organization KidsRights, now told this site. “They were the ankle bracelet for parents. These had to be kept at home in order to effectively fight the epidemic. At the expense of their mental health.” In the first phase, when everyone was looking for the right approach, this was understandable according to Dullaert. ,,But De Jonge’s statements came at a time when it was really no longer acceptable, in the second phase. And other countries – such as Belgium and Sweden – have done everything they can to keep the schools open, so there were alternatives on the table.”

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“..it has a fatality rate of around 54%..”

Delhi Reports Over 1,000 Cases Of ‘Black Fungus’ Amid Shortage Of Drugs (RT)

The number of cases of so-called black fungus, or mucormycosis, has almost doubled in Delhi over the past seven days, reaching 1,044 infections, the local health minister has said. The disease has particularly affected India’s Covid patients. A further 440 people have been diagnosed in the city since last week, when the number of afflicted patients stood at 600. Health minister Satyendra Jain said on Thursday that 89 people had succumbed to the disease in Delhi to date, while 92 others had recovered. The shortage of drugs to treat mucormycosis still remained a problem for the city of 29 million, the minister added. Cases of black fungus have been on the rise in India during the harsh second wave of the coronavirus pandemic.


As of May 25, the country saw 11,700 infections, which prompted several states to declare mucormycosis an epidemic. It also soon became clear that the health authorities didn’t have sufficient quantities of the antifungal drug Amphotericin B for the number of patients. Capitalizing on the weakened immune system in Covid sufferers, the fungi most commonly enter the human body through the nose and mouth before spreading to the lungs, heart, or brain. Its symptoms include facial swelling and black lesions – hence its name – and it has a fatality rate of around 54%. The spike in black fungus incidences among Indian coronavirus patients has been largely linked to the steroids and anti-inflammatory drugs prescribed during their treatment for Covid-19.

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The US did this to Ukraine.

Nord Stream 2 To Cost Kiev $3 Billion In Transit Fees A Year – Zelensky (RT)

The completion of the controversial Nord Stream 2 project will deprive Ukraine of about $3 billion annually, with the country’s pipelines no longer necessary for the transportation of Russian gas to Western Europe. That’s according to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, who told a delegation from the US Congress that America should do what it can to prevent Nord Stream 2 from being completed. Once finished, the pipeline will connect Germany directly to Russia via the Baltic Sea. It aims to protect Berlin’s energy security and make the process less reliant on third countries transiting gas, thereby lowering the price. As things stand, according to Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak, around 100km remains to be completed, which should be achieved by the end of 2021.


“Only the United States and the administration of President Joe Biden can prevent the completion and commissioning of Nord Stream 2,” Zelensky explained. “Nord Stream 2 will disconnect Ukraine from gas supplies, which means ‘disconnecting’ us from at least $3 billion a year… We will have nothing to pay for the Ukrainian Army.” According to the Ukrainian leader, without this money, the country will no longer have a “powerful and well-supplied army” to continue “defending Europe and European values.” The construction of Nord Stream 2 has been significantly hindered by US sanctions, with Washington imposing numerous packages of measures against companies involved in the building, maintenance, insurance, and certification of the project. The American authorities have claimed that its completion would “undermine Europe’s overall energy security and stability.” However, some have accused the Americans of opposing the pipeline for economic reasons, as the country looks to increase its exports of liquefied natural gas to the continent.

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They’ll move into gold.

Russia’s $186 Billion Sovereign Wealth Fund Dumps All Dollar Assets (ZH)

Following a series of corporate cyberattacks that American intelligence agencies have blamed on Russian actors, Russia’s sovereign wealth fund (officially the National Wellbeing Fund) has decided to dump all of its dollars and dollar-denominated assets in favor of those denominated in euros, yuan – or simply buying precious metals like gold, which Russia’s central bank has increasingly favored for its own reserves. Finance Minister Anton Siluanov made the announcement Thursday morning at the annual St. Petersburg International Economic Forum. “We can make this change rather quickly, within a month,” Siluanov told reporters Thursday.

He explained that the Kremlin is moving to reduce exposure to US assets as President Biden threatens more economic sanctions against Russia following the latest ransomware attacks. The transfer will affect $119 billion in liquid assets, Bloomberg reported, but the sales will largely be executed through the Russian Central bank and its massive reserves, limiting the market impact and reducing visibility on what exactly the sovereign wealth fund will be buying. “The central bank can make these changes to the Wellbeing Fund without resorting to market operations,” said Sofya Donets, economist at Renaissance Capital in Moscow. “This in some sense a technical thing.”

Jordan Rochester, currency strategist at Nomura International PLC, said, “This is a transfer of euros from the central bank to the wealth fund, we’ll then see the central bank the holder of the USDs and it’s up to them to manage it. No initial market impact.” The news isn’t a complete surprise: The Bank of Russia, Russia’s central bank, has steadily reduced its dollar holdings over the last few years amid increasing sanctions pressure from the US and Europe. That trend continued through President Trump’s term. Just a few days ago, we reported that the Russian parliament had just authorized the sovereign wealth fund to buy gold through the central bank. However, the central bank reports its holdings with a six-month lag, making it impossible to determine its current holdings.

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Brilliant Ali on how he wants to be remembered.

 

 


The red train, Landwasserviadukt, Switzerland. Drone photo by Sebastianmzh

 

 

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May 192021
 


Andrew Wyeth Christina’s world 1948

 

The CDC Is Manipulating Data To Prop-up “Vaccine Effectiveness” (OffG)
CDC Head Now Differentiates Between Dying ‘From’ Vs. Dying ‘With’ Covid (Fox)
Is The Pfizer Vaccine As Effective As Claimed? (P&R)
One Shot Is Enough To Obtain An EU Covid Travel Certificate (CC)
Vaccine Cocktails Could Be On The Menu (RT)
Unvaccinated Americans Twice As Likely To Feel Comfortable Ditching Masks (F.)
Canada Invests $200 Million To Build An mRNA Vaccine Plant (CBC)
New York Investigation Into Trump Organization Now Criminal (R.)
The Glass House Where the Power Elite Gather to Throw Stones (MPN)
Is The Age Of Permanent War Finally Over? (Krainer)
Israel Kills 11 Children Receiving Trauma Care in Their Homes (NRC)
Biden To Waive Sanctions On Company In Charge Of Nord Stream 2 (Axios)
From Basic Income To Inheritance For All (Piketty)

 

 

 

 

Any questions?

The CDC Is Manipulating Data To Prop-up “Vaccine Effectiveness” (OffG)

The US Center for Disease Control (CDC) is altering its practices of data logging and testing for “Covid19” in order to make it seem the experimental gene-therapy “vaccines” are effective at preventing the alleged disease. They made no secret of this, announcing the policy changes on their website in late April/early May, (though naturally without admitting the fairly obvious motivation behind the change). The trick is in their reporting of what they call “breakthrough infections” – that is people who are fully “vaccinated” against Sars-Cov-2 infection, but get infected anyway. Essentially, Covid19 has long been shown – to those willing to pay attention – to be an entirely created pandemic narrative built on two key factors:

• False-postive tests. The unreliable PCR test can be manipulated into reporting a high number of false-positives by altering the cycle threshold (CT value) • Inflated Case-count. The incredibly broad definition of “Covid case”, used all over the world, lists anyone who receives a positive test as a “Covid19 case”, even if they never experienced any symptoms. Without these two policies, there would never have been an appreciable pandemic at all, and now the CDC has enacted two policy changes which means they no longer apply to vaccinated people. Firstly, they are lowering their CT value when testing samples from suspected “breakthrough infections”. From the CDC’s instructions for state health authorities on handling “possible breakthrough infections” (uploaded to their website in late April):

“For cases with a known RT-PCR cycle threshold (Ct) value, submit only specimens with Ct value ≤28 to CDC for sequencing. (Sequencing is not feasible with higher Ct values.)” Throughout the pandemic, CT values in excess of 35 have been the norm, with labs around the world going into the 40s. Essentially labs were running as many cycles as necessary to achieve a positive result, despite experts warning that this was pointless (even Fauci himself said anything over 35 cycles is meaningless). But NOW, and only for fully vaccinated people, the CDC will only accept samples achieved from 28 cycles or fewer. That can only be a deliberate decision in order to decrease the number of “breakthrough infections” being officially recorded.

Secondly, asymptomatic or mild infections will no longer be recorded as “covid cases”. That’s right. Even if a sample collected at the low CT value of 28 can be sequenced into the virus alleged to cause Covid19, the CDC will no longer be keeping records of breakthrough infections that don’t result in hospitalisation or death. From their website: “As of May 1, 2021, CDC transitioned from monitoring all reported vaccine breakthrough cases to focus on identifying and investigating only hospitalized or fatal cases due to any cause. This shift will help maximize the quality of the data collected on cases of greatest clinical and public health importance. Previous case counts, which were last updated on April 26, 2021, are available for reference only and will not be updated moving forward.” Just like that, being asymptomatic – or having only minor symptoms – will no longer count as a “Covid case” but only if you’ve been vaccinated.

The CDC has put new policies in place which effectively created a tiered system of diagnosis. Meaning, from now on, unvaccinated people will find it much easier to be diagnosed with Covid19 than vaccinated people.

Consider…

Person A has not been vaccinated. They test positive for Covid using a PCR test at 40 cycles and, despite having no symptoms, they are officially a “covid case”.

Person B has been vaccinated. They test positive at 28 cycles, and spend six weeks bedridden with a high fever. Because they never went into a hospital and didn’t die they are NOT a Covid case.

Person C, who was also vaccinated, did die. After weeks in hospital with a high fever and respiratory problems. Only their positive PCR test was 29 cycles, so they’re not officially a Covid case either.

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Seriously wondering what they pay their PR people.

CDC Head Now Differentiates Between Dying ‘From’ Vs. Dying ‘With’ Covid (Fox)

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Rochelle Walensky drew criticism on Sunday for her method of identifying COVID-19 deaths in the U.S., making a sudden distinction between those who died “from” the virus and those who died “with” it. During an interview on CNN’s “State of the Union,” Walensky was asked about vaccinated Americans who have contracted the virus – and whether anyone has died from an infection, despite being inoculated. Walensky said the CDC is aware of 223 so-called “break-through” infections in vaccinated Americans, but clarified that many of those individuals died due to other causes. “Not all of those 223 cases who had COVID actually died of COVID,” she said. “They may have had mild disease but died, for example, of a heart attack.”

But critics pounced on Walensky’s reasoning. “After all this time, we are going to start distinguishing died ‘with’ Covid from died ‘from’ Covid,” one Twitter user wrote. “How anyone lives with the dishonest reporting of numbers is beyond me. Either we treat all the deaths with the same questioning or none of them, Period.” Another user wrote: ‘So she literally just admitted that the covid death count isn’t a real count of covid deaths. The response to this pandemic gets more baffling by the day.” Others suggested that all COVID-19 deaths should be re-examined to determine whether the person died “from” the virus or “with” it. “Sounds like 500k cases need to be reviewed to more accurately distinguish ‘with’ and ‘from’,” one user said. “Hmm, thought I heard this same sentiment expressed in the past.”

Close to 47% of the adult population in the U.S. is fully vaccinated, according to data published by the CDC, while nearly 60% of the adult population – or roughly 157 million people – has received at least one dose. The vaccination rate is expected to rise shortly following the Food and Drug Administration’s approval this week for the use of the Pfizer vaccine in children between the ages of 12 and 15. More than 32.7 million Americans have been infected with COVID-19, and more than 582,000 people died from the virus, according to the CDC.

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No, of course not, it’s just a sales campaign.

Is The Pfizer Vaccine As Effective As Claimed? (P&R)

Using the simple ‘cases per 1000 tests’ (rather than the biased ‘incident rate per 100,000 person days’), results in an approximate ‘vaccine effectiveness’ measure of 75.7%. While this is much less than the 95% headline figure, it is still impressive, so it is strange why the study failed to account for the difference in proportions tested. It appears that the failure to adjust the vaccine effectiveness calculation for different testing protocols for vaccinated and unvaccinated people is not restricted to this Pfizer study in Israel. The data in the FDA briefing document on the Pfizer vaccine (dated 10 Dec 2020) suggests there was a similar problem with the phase 3 trial of the vaccine. This was a randomized, double-blinded and placebo-controlled trial of the vaccine in 44,000 uninfected participants.

It similarly reports a 95% effectiveness measure based on the fact that (post injection) there were 162 confirmed Covid-19 cases among the placebo participants compared to just 8 among the vaccinated participants. However, the study also reports that there were a much larger number of ‘suspected but unconfirmed’ cases and that these were more evenly spread between placebo participants (1,816 such cases) and vaccinated participants (1,594 such cases). This seems to suggest that a disproportionately small number of vaccinated participants with symptoms received PCR tests compared to placebo participants with symptoms. Clearly the failure to properly adjust for both a decreasing infection rate and different testing protocols for vaccinated and unvaccinated people casts doubt on the validity of the studies.

It is also worth noting that, even if we ignore all of the above issues and accept as undisputed the number for ‘COVID-19 related deaths’ in the Israel study (715 among the unvaccinated and 138 among the vaccinated), then the absolute percentage increase in risk of death for an unvaccinated person is just 0.036%. That means that, even if we accept the 95% effectiveness measure, for every 10,000 unvaccinated people, about 3 or 4 would die as a result of not being vaccinated. And this brings us to the final (and critical) problem with the study. It does not provide any information about the number of adverse reactions – in particular the number of deaths – due to the vaccine. Hence, it does not provides the necessary information to make an informed decision about the overall risk/benefit of the vaccine.

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Follow the science, you said? If they had enough vaccines, they would make it two. But they don’t, and everyone wants tourism, so it’s one.

One Shot Is Enough To Obtain An EU Covid Travel Certificate (CC)

You are expected to need only one injection this summer to travel in the European Union. So people don’t have to wait for both shots before they can apply for a Covid travel certificate, EU sources say. In recent weeks, there have been crowded meetings within the European Union over the Covid travel certification. Today, the member states, the European Parliament and the European Commission are back together. The exact terms of the travel certificate are expected to become clear at the end of the week. There are still a number of points on which negotiators disagree. For example, it appears that there will be no free PCR tests for people who want to apply for a travel certificate. The European Parliament wanted to take care of this, as it would make an unfair difference between those who were vaccinated and did not have to pay for it and those who would have to pay for a PCR test before traveling.


But according to diplomats from the European Union, a number of countries, including the Netherlands, do not like this. They think the countries themselves revolve around this. In their opinion, therefore, a free injection should not be imposed from the European Union. The board is likely to issue its opinion on pricing for PCR tests. According to the sources, the Cabinet will decide next Friday the conditions and prices for exams in the Netherlands. Travelers who go on vacation by car will likely avoid a lot of trouble. The intention is that there will be no border controls. Once in the country, you can check. But it is not clear how. The PCR test should be done 72 hours before departure, but if travelers are not screened at the border, this is difficult to prove.

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Where did we lose track?

Vaccine Cocktails Could Be On The Menu (RT)

A Spanish study has suggested that administering a second dose of Pfizer to those who received AstraZeneca as their first dose is safe. It saw antibodies increase seven-fold compared to those who were given no second jab at all. The CombivacS study, which enrolled 676 participants who had already received a first dose of AstraZeneca and gave them a second dose of Pfizer, has produced positive preliminary results. Of the total cohort, 450 people were given Pfizer as their second dose, and the remaining 226 have not received any second dose and are being observed as the control group.

Published on Tuesday, the study, launched by the Carlos III Health Institute, reported that the combination was both safe and effective. Jesus Antonio Frias, coordinator of the ISCIII Clinical Research Network, said, “A more than seven-fold increase in neutralizing antibodies was observed 14 days after vaccination.” According to Magdalena Campins, of the Vall d’Hebron University Hospital in Barcelona, very few side effects have been reported, other than minor pain at the injection site and general discomfort or headaches.

The data reinforces the findings of a larger British study that published its preliminary results last week. It said there were no immediate safety concerns about mixing AstraZeneca and Pfizer jabs, but noted that adverse reactions were heightened. The researchers suggested it was possible that these were more prevalent among younger people, but did not elaborate. Spain commenced its study following the government’s decision to stop using AstraZeneca for those under the age of 60. The study’s findings will inform whether the nearly two million essential workers who received a first dose of AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 shot will receive a second dose, and which jab they will be given.

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Fear is a harsh mistress.

Unvaccinated Americans Twice As Likely To Feel Comfortable Ditching Masks (F.)

A majority of Americans still say they would not feel comfortable performing most activities without a mask even amid new public health guidance, a new Morning Consult poll finds—but unvaccinated Americans are far more likely to be OK with going maskless, suggesting new mask guidelines might not incentivize a lot of them to get the shot. No more than 48% of U.S. adults would be comfortable doing any of the activities polled without a mask—with outdoor dining being the activity with the highest degree of comfort and international flights having the lowest degree—according to the poll, which was conducted May 14-17 among 2,200 respondents. For every single activity polled, unvaccinated Americans were dramatically more likely to say they’d be comfortable going maskless than their vaccinated counterparts.


Unvaccinated people were approximately twice as likely as vaccinated people to say they’re comfortable not wearing a mask at the movies (40% unvaccinated comfortable versus 20% vaccinated), a shopping mall (41% versus 21%), an amusement park (41% versus 21%), a religious gathering (41% versus 21%), museums (42% versus 22$), a work conference (40% versus 19%), the gym or exercise class (40% versus 20%) and going to school (40% versus 21%). The biggest discrepancies between unvaccinated Americans and vaccinated were in their comfort level going unmasked on a cruise (36% unvaccinated comfortable versus 16% vaccinated), public transportation (33% versus 12%) and on airplanes to domestic locations (34% versus 14%) and international locations (31% versus 12%).

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It’s for the rest of your life.

Canada Invests $200 Million To Build An mRNA Vaccine Plant (CBC)

The federal government today announced a $200-million investment to help a Mississauga, Ont.-based company build a plant that can churn out millions of mRNA vaccines. Innovation Minister François-Philippe Champagne said the money will be used to expand an existing site owned by Resilience Biotechnologies Inc. to provide “made-in-Canada solutions such as vaccines and treatments for future pandemics.” The funds will expand Resilience’s manufacturing and fill-finish capacity for a number of vaccines and therapeutics, including mRNA shots like the ones now being used to fight COVID-19, Champagne said. The government says the plant expansion will create 500 permanent jobs and 50 co-op placements for students once construction is complete in 2024.


The addition of some 55,000 square feet of factory space will allow Resilience to manufacture between 112 million and 640 million doses of mRNA product each year. The goal is to leave Canada less dependent on foreign vaccine makers when the next pandemic hits. Resilience is a contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO), which means it assembles products developed by other companies. It’s standard for big pharmaceutical companies like AstraZeneca, Merck and Pfizer to outsource the actual drug manufacturing process to third parties. Some companies have sold their manufacturing sites to focus on research and development. A Novartis-owned plant in Boucherville, Que. was sold to Avara, a contract manufacturing operation, in 2018.

Read more …

Tie this in with Jan. 6.

New York Investigation Into Trump Organization Now Criminal (R.)

The New York state attorney general’s office has told the Trump Organization that its investigation of the company is now a criminal probe, not purely civil. Cyrus Vance, Manhattan’s district attorney, has also been investigating the business run by former president Donald Trump for more than two years. “We have informed the Trump Organization that our investigation into the organization is no longer purely civil in nature,” spokesman Fabien Levy said in a statement for New York state attorney general, Letitia James. “We are now actively investigating the Trump Organization in a criminal capacity, along with the Manhattan DA,” he said.


Vance’s office has said in court filings it was investigating “possibly extensive and protracted criminal conduct” at the former president’s Trump Organization, including tax and insurance fraud and falsification of business records. Vance’s probe began after Trump’s former lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen paid hush money to silence two women before the 2016 election about claimed sexual encounters with Trump. That probe has accelerated since Republican Trump lost his bid for a second term to president Joe Biden, a Democrat. James, who like Vance is a Democrat, is leading a separate criminal probe into whether Trump’s company falsely reported property values to secure loans and obtain economic and tax benefits.

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“Asian NATO”

The Glass House Where the Power Elite Gather to Throw Stones (MPN)

The United States is the nation that most threatens democracy worldwide, far more than Russia or even China. That is the headline finding from a new worldwide poll of 53 countries commissioned by the Alliance of Democracies (AoD). The poll also found that the global public considers rising inequality and the increased power of the super rich to be the greatest threat to liberty and democracy. This was likely not the response the Alliance of Democracies wished to hear as it opened its third annual Democracy Summit in Copenhagen this week — precisely because the organization represents the U.S. government and the wealthy elite more generally. Featuring an all-star panel of American officials, Western heads of state and military leaders, this year’s summit was somber in tone and focused on the “urgent need” for Western nations to unite and come up with a “transatlantic response” to counter both Russia and China.

To that end, there was talk of building an “Asian NATO” and of further controlling what can be said online, all in the service of defending and upholding democracy from these foes. The Alliance of Democracies was founded in 2017 by former Prime Minister of Denmark Anders Fogh Rasmussen. As Secretary General of NATO between 2009 and 2014, he also oversaw the Iraq and Afghanistan occupations, as well as the attack and regime-change operation in Libya, which saw ISIS-affiliated jihadists take control of the country. Together with future President Joe Biden and former Director of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff, Rasmussen also founded the Transatlantic Commission on Election Integrity (TECI), an AoD body at the forefront of accusing Russia of election meddling in the U.S. Biden was one of the inaugural speakers at the first Democracy Summit in 2018.

The great and the good — including presidents, journalists and business magnates — gathered both in person and virtually to discuss the supposed threats to the democratic order, with Rasmussen in particular pushing for a more formal military, political and economic alliance among the world’s “democracies” against Russia and China. The well-dressed and soft-spoken Dane also introduced lineups of speakers who argued for regime change in states the alliance does not feel are democratic enough for their liking.

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“We must therefore guard against believing that our enemies are the Russians, the Chinese or whomever the logic of divide-and-rule would pit us against.”

Is The Age Of Permanent War Finally Over? (Krainer)

Recent events in the world have given me great hope that we might finally emerge from the century of permanent war. The Great Reset agenda seems to be losing steam and those in charge of implementing it are losing conviction (with the exception, perhaps, of the very top echelon in power). At the same time, the ranks of people who are opposed to it and are willing to take a stand, appear to be swelling. Since the very start of the great pandemic of 2020, something about the public health response didn’t feel right. It was clear from the measures that were enacted and from measures that were not enacted that their purpose had little to do with public health. Instead, they seemed to further a different agenda. Soon we learned that this was all connected to World Economic Forum’s hugely ambitious Fourth Industrial Revolution or the Great Reset.

But the agenda and the steps taken seemed rushed, panicked and frankly, hopeless. Many of the solutions and technologies that would need to be rolled out and ready to use turned out to be non-existent or only in conceptual stages of development. As months went on, the events proved this impression correct as we watched the authorities muddle through, destroying their own credibility in the process. In a very recent interview Dr. Rainer Fullmich stated as follows: “We have a whistleblower and she told us that the original plan was to roll this out in 2050. But then those who are involved with this got greedy and pulled things forward to 2030 and then to 2020 and that’s why so many mistakes are happening.”

I do not believe that the people involved with this got greedy — I believe that their concern is with the fragility and imminent demise of the financial system which is their key mechanism of control over all the levers of influence in society. The implosion of that system would also jeopardize their position of power, so they rushed the Great Reset right off the back of the 2020 pandemic to try and front-run the collapse and give themselves an iron-fisted control of things ahead of the unfolding crisis. From their various documents and white papers, it is also evident that they had anticipated the public pushback. As I wrote last August, they have “surely planned diversions to misdirect our grievances… One of the greatest means of diversion are wars. We must therefore guard against believing that our enemies are the Russians, the Chinese or whomever the logic of divide-and-rule would pit us against.”

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By the Norwegian Refugee Council

“..buried with their dreams and the nightmares that haunted them..”

If this doesn’t break your heart…

Israel Kills 11 Children Receiving Trauma Care in Their Homes (NRC)

The Norwegian Refugee Council confirmed that 11 of over 60 children killed by Israeli air strikes in Gaza over the last week were participating in its psycho-social program aimed at helping them deal with trauma. All of the children between 5 and 15 years old were killed in their homes in densely populated areas along with countless other relatives who died or received injuries. “We are devastated to learn that eight children we were helping with trauma were bombarded while they were at home and thought they were safe,” said NRC’s Secretary General Jan Egeland. “They are now gone, killed with their families, buried with their dreams and the nightmares that haunted them. We call on Israel to stop this madness: children must be protected. Their homes must not be targets. Schools must not be targets. Spare these children and their families. Stop bombing them now.”

The children NRC assisted included Lina Iyad Sharir, 15, who was killed with both of her parents in their home on May 11 in Gaza City’s Al Manara neighborhood. Her two-year-old sister Mina sustained third degree burns and remains in critical condition. Hala Hussein al-Rifi, 13, was killed on the night of May 12 when an air strike hit the Salha residential building in Gaza City’s Tal Al-Hawa neighborhood. The attack also killed four-year-old Zaid Mohammad Telbani and his mother Rima, who was five months pregnant. Zaid’s sister remains missing and is presumed dead.

Multiple air raids on 16 May in Al Wahda Street in central Gaza City killed six children that NRC worked with, together with several family members. These included Tala Ayman Abu al-Auf, 13, and her 17-year-old brother. Their father, Dr Ayman Abu al-Auf, was the head of internal medicine at Gaza City’s Shifa hospital. He was also killed. The same attacks also killed Rula Mohammad al-Kawlak, 5, Yara, 9, and Hala, 12 – all sisters – together with their cousin Hana, 14, and several other of their relatives, as well as sisters Dima and Mira Rami al-Ifranji, 15 and 11, and neighbour Dana Riad Hasan Ishkantna, 9.

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Merkel would have never given in.

Biden To Waive Sanctions On Company In Charge Of Nord Stream 2 (Axios)

The Biden administration will waive sanctions on the corporate entity and CEO overseeing the construction of Russia’s Nord Stream 2 pipeline into Germany, according to two sources briefed on the decision. The decision indicates the Biden administration is not willing to compromise its relationship with Germany over this pipeline, and it underscores the difficulties President Biden faces in matching actions to rhetoric on a tougher approach to Russia. The State Department will imminently send its mandatory 90-day report to Congress listing entities involved in Nord Stream 2 that deserve sanctions. Sources familiar with the drafting of the report tell Axios the State Department plans to call for sanctions against a handful of Russian ships.

The State Department will also acknowledge that the corporate entity in charge of the project (Nord Stream 2 AG) and its CEO (Putin crony and former East German intelligence officer Matthias Warnig) are engaged in sanctionable activities. However, the State Department will waive the applications of those sanctions, citing U.S. national interests. This planned move seems at odds with Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s statement, made during his confirmation hearing: “I am determined to do whatever we can to prevent that completion” of Nord Stream 2. This planned move also sets up a bizarre situation in which the Biden administration will be sanctioning ships involved in the building of Nord Stream 2 but refusing to sanction the actual company in charge of the project.

Sources close to the situation say that top Biden officials have determined that the only way to potentially stop the project — which is 95% complete — is to sanction the German end users of the gas. And the Biden administration is not willing to rupture its relationship with Germany over Nord Stream 2.

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“..it is preferable to speak of a basic income than of a universal income..”

From Basic Income To Inheritance For All (Piketty)

The Covid crisis is forcing us to rethink the tools of redistribution and solidarity. Proposals are springing up everywhere: basic income, job guarantee, inheritance for all. Let’s say it straight away: these proposals are complementary and not substitutable. In the long run, they must all be implemented, in stages and in this order. Let’s start with basic income. Such a system is dramatically lacking today, especially in the South, where the incomes of the working poor have collapsed and containment rules are unenforceable in the absence of a minimum income. Opposition parties had proposed introducing a basic income in India in the 2019 elections, but the ruling nationalist-conservatives in Delhi are still dragging their feet.

In Europe, various forms of minimum income exist in most countries, but with many shortcomings. In particular, there is an urgent need to extend access to them to younger people and students (this has already long been the case in Denmark), and especially to people without a fixed address or bank account, who often face insurmountable obstacles. It is worth noting in passing the importance of the current discussions on central bank digital currencies, which should ideally lead to the creation of a genuine public banking service, free and accessible to all, the antithesis of the systems dreamt up by private operators (whether decentralised and polluting, like bitcoin, or centralised and inegalitarian, like the projects of Facebook or private banks).

It is also essential to extend the basic income to include low-paid workers, with a system of automatic payment on pay slips and bank accounts, without people having to ask for it, linked to the progressive tax system (also deducted at source). Basic income is an essential but insufficient tool. In particular, its amount is always extremely modest. Depending on the proposal, it is generally between half and three quarters of the full-time minimum wage, so that, by construction it can only be a partial tool in the fight against inequality. For this reason, it is preferable to speak of a basic income than of a universal income (a notion that promises more than this minimalist reality).

Read more …

 

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May 202018
 
 May 20, 2018  Posted by at 2:20 pm Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,  4 Responses »


Vittorio Matteo Corcos Conversation in the Jardin du Luxembourg 1892

 

Obviously, there are tensions between Europe and the US. Just as obviously, these tensions are blamed on, who else, Donald Trump. European Council President Donald Tusk recently said: “With friends like Trump, who needs enemies?” EU Commission chair Jean-Claude Juncker even proclaimed that “Europe must take America’s place as global leader”.

These European ‘leaders’ love the big words. They think they make them look good, strong. In reality, they are merely messenger boys for Berlin and Paris. Who have infinitely more say than Brussels. Problem is, Berlin and Paris are not united at all. Macron wants more Europe, especially in finance, but Merkel knows she can’t sell that at home.

So what are those big words worth when the whip comes down? It’s amusing to see how different people reach wholly different conclusions about that. Instructive and entertaining. First, Alex Gorka at The Strategic Culture Foundation, who likes the big words too: “..a landmark event that will go down in history as the day Europe united to openly defy the US.” and “May 17 is the day the revolt started and there is no going back. Europe has said goodbye to trans-Atlantic unity. It looks like it has had enough.

 

Brussels Rises In Revolt Against Washington: A Turning Point In US-European Relations

The May 16-17 EU-Western Balkans summit did address the problems of integration, but it was eclipsed by another issue. The meeting turned out to be a landmark event that will go down in history as the day Europe united to openly defy the US. The EU will neither review the Iran nuclear deal (JPCOA) nor join the sanctions against Tehran that have been reintroduced and even intensified by America.

Washington’s unilateral withdrawal from the JPCOA was the last straw, forcing the collapse of Western unity. The Europeans found themselves up against a wall. There is no point in discussing further integration or any other matter if the EU cannot protect its own members. But now it can.

[..] As European Council President Donald Tusk put it, “With friends like Trump, who needs enemies?” According to him, the US president has “rid Europe of all illusions.” Mr. Tusk wants Europe to “stick to our guns” against new US policies. Jean-Claude Juncker, the head of the EU Commission, believes that “Europe must take America’s place as global leader” because Washington has turned its back on its allies.

Washington “no longer wants to cooperate.” It is turning away from friendly relations “with ferocity.” Mr. Juncker thinks the time is ripe for Europe “to replace the United States, which as an international actor has lost vigor.” It would have been unthinkable not long ago for a top EU official to say such things and challenge the US global leadership. Now the unthinkable has become reality.

[..] Sandra Oudkirk, US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Energy, has just threatened to sanction the Europeans if they continue with the Nord Stream 2 pipeline project to bring gas in from Russia across the Baltic Sea.

[..] President Donald Trump has just instructed Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to prepare a list of new sanctions against the Russian Federation for its alleged violations of the 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty. [..] But nobody in Europe has announced that they want US nuclear-tipped intermediate- range weapons on their territory that will be a target for a potential retaliatory strike by Russia.

[..] The time is ripe for Brussels to stop this sanctions-counter-sanctions mayhem and stake out its own independent policies on Russia, Iran, defense, and other issues, that will protect European, not US, national interests. May 17 is the day the revolt started and there is no going back. Europe has said goodbye to trans-Atlantic unity. It looks like it has had enough.

As for placing new nukes in Europe, that will be a hard sell. But the US will probably find countries that say yes, provided they are compensated well. Just don’t try it in Holland, Germany or France. But also don’t forget the amount of nukes already on the continent: just call it an upgrade.

Nord Stream 2 is tricky, but mostly an economic issue: Trump wants to sell American gas to Europe, and uses the bad bad Putin narrative to make that happen. Still, the pipeline has been in the pipeline for a long time, and a lot of time and money has been spent on it. It’ll be hard for the US to cut it off at this late stage.

When it comes to claiming the EU will not review the Iran nuclear deal, isn’t that exactly what they are indeed doing? Reuters:

 

Europe, China, Russia Discussing New Deal For Iran

Under the 2015 deal, Iran agreed to curb its nuclear program in return for the lifting of most Western sanctions. One of the main complaints of the Trump administration was that the accord did not cover Iran’s missile program or its support for armed groups in the Middle East which the West considers terrorists.

Concluding a new agreement that would maintain the nuclear provisions and curb ballistic missile development efforts and Tehran’s activities in the region could help convince Trump to lift sanctions against Iran, the paper said. “We have to get away from the name ‘Vienna nuclear agreement’ and add in a few additional elements. Only that will convince President Trump to agree and lift sanctions again,” the paper quoted a senior EU diplomat as saying.

All in all, Mr. Gorka doesn’t convince me. Europe doesn’t speak with one voice, and we wouldn’t even know which voice speaks for it. Just that it isn’t Juncker or Tusk, they’re handpuppets. Moreover, Europe has so many internal issues to deal with that it has a hard time speaking at all. A landmark event in US-EU relations may happen one day, but May 17 wasn’t it.

What I find more interesting is the account of academic John Laughland, ‘a historian and specialist in international affairs’, at RT:

 

With Iran Sanctions Trump Made Europeans Look Like The Fools They Are

Donald Tusk may say “Europe must be united economically, politically and also militarily like never before … either we are together or we are not at all” but Europe is indeed not “together” at all. The Brussels commission is hounding Poland and Hungary on what are clearly internal political matters beyond the Commission’s remit; the EU is about to lose one of its most important member states; and a new government is going to take power in Rome whose economic policies (a flat tax at 15%) will blow the eurozone’s borrowing rules out of the water and perhaps cause Italy to leave the euro.

The Italian 5-Star/League government also wants an end to the EU sanctions against Russia; these are voted by a unanimity which, although fragile, has held until now but which, if the new power in Rome keeps its word, will shortly collapse. In other words, what Trump has done is to make the Europeans look like the fools they are. In circumstances in which the EU has placed all its eggs in one basket, a basket which Trump has now overturned, it will be impossible for it to come together. On the contrary, it is falling apart.

[..] the EU draws its entire legitimacy from the belief that by pooling sovereignty and by merging its states into one entity, it has advanced beyond the age when international relations were decided by force. It believes that it embodies instead a new international system based on rules and agreements, and that any other system leads to war. It is impossible to exaggerate the importance of this belief for European leaders; yet Donald Trump has just driven a coach and horses through it.

The angry statements by European leaders might lead one to think that we are on the cusp of a major reappraisal of trans-Atlantic relations. However, the reality is that the EU and its leaders have painted themselves into a corner from which it will be very difficult, perhaps impossible, to extricate themselves.

Like I said, completely different conclusions based on the exact same events. The EU risks what might turn into an existential crisis with Beppe Grillo effectively holding the reins of power in Rome. The new government may have dropped the demand for a €260 billion debt relief, but the basic income plan is still there, and so is dropping Russian sanctions.

The new guys can’t divert from their election promises much further, they need to maintain their credibility. But for a lot of their promises it is not at all clear how they could possible fit into the present EU structure. Try their demand for a mechanism to leave the EU.

Italy is so large that Brussels cannot be too aggressive against it. The ECB cannot stop buying Italian bonds, as it did with Greek ones. And at some point the debt relief demand will return too.

But Laughland has a lot more cold water to pour on the alleged but toothless European revolt. In the shape of NATO. This is scary for every European:

 

[..] the links between the EU and the US are not only very long-standing, they are also set in stone. NATO and the EU are in reality Siamese twins, two bodies born at the same time which are joined at the hip. The first European community was created with overt and covert US support in 1950 in order to militarize Western Europe and to prepare it to fight a land war against the Soviet Union; NATO acquired its integrated command structure a few months later and its Supreme Commander is always an American.

Today the two organizations are legally inseparable because the consolidated Treaty on European Union, in the form adopted at Lisbon in 2009, states that EU foreign policy “shall respect” the obligations of NATO member states and that it shall “be compatible” with NATO policy. In other words, the constitutional charter of the EU subordinates it to NATO, which the USA dominates legally and structurally. In such circumstances, European states can only liberate themselves from US hegemony, as Donald Tusk said they should, by leaving the EU. It is obvious that they are not prepared to do that.

Anything else about those dreams of standing up to Trump? Have the past and present leaders in Brussels, and in Berlin and Paris and Rome, betrayed their own citizens? Sold them out? How far removed is this from treason? And does this perhaps indicate that it’s high time for a complete and utter overhaul of the European Union?

It sure sounds a lot more realistic than Europe replacing America as the global leader.

Who needs enemies? NATO does.