Dec 192023
 


Pablo Picasso Portrait of the artist’s mother 1896 (he was 15)

 

They Can Wait at Leisure, Whilst Netanyahu Labours – and Errs (Alastair Crooke)
US Prepares Its Ukraine War Coalition Fleet In The Red Sea (Helmer)
Middle East ‘Totally Out Of Control’ – Trump (RT)
Russian Policy Towards The Gaza War & Palestine Genocide Is Mistaken (Helmer)
The American Political Crisis (Paul Craig Roberts)
Impeachment: Biden Under Formal Investigation (Patrick Lawrence)
Trump Attorneys Ask Fulton County Judge to Dismiss Indictment (ET)
Yatsenyuk Suggests How West Could Pressure Russia (RT)
EU May Strip Hungary Of Voting Rights To Seal Ukraine Aid Deal – FT (TASS)
Brussels Launches Legal Action Against Elon Musk’s X (EN)
In the Game of Strip Poker, Someone Ends Up Naked (Kunstler)
Secret Pakistan Document Undermines Espionage Case Against Imran Khan (IC)
Rolling Thunder Global Propaganda – Mark Crispin Miller (USAW)
Pfizer Seeks To Treat Most TURBO CANCERS Caused By mRNA Vaccines (Makis)

 

 

 

 

Tucker

 

 

Water vs fire

 

 

 

 

Blair-Bush initiative..

They Can Wait at Leisure, Whilst Netanyahu Labours – and Errs (Alastair Crooke)

In a small dimly lit room in Gaza, it was possible to discern first the museum-piece wheel chair, and then the crumpled, blanketed figure of the paraplegic figure who occupied it. Suddenly a high-pitched squeal seemed to emit from the wheelchair; it’s occupant’s hearing aid had gone wild, and was to continue to shriek at regular intervals during my visit. I wondered how much the chair-occupant could hear, with such a mal-adjusted ear-piece. Settled into discussion, I realised that disabled or not, his mental state was sharper than a knife. He was as tough as nails; had a dry humour and his eyes perpetually sparkled. He was clearly enjoying himself – except when wrestling with the whistles and shrieks from his hearing aid. How was it that such charisma was packed within such a slight figure? This man in the wheelchair and with the rickety earpiece – Sheikh Ahmad Yasin – was the founder of Hamas. And what he said to me that morning has come to upend the Islamic world today.

What he said was: “Hamas is not an Islamic movement. It is a liberation movement, and anyone, be they Christian, or Buddhist – or even I – could join it. We all were welcome”. Why was this simple formula somehow so significant and connected to today’s events? Well, the ethos of Gaza, at that time (2000-2002), was predominantly that of ideological Islamism. The Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood was deeply embedded. It was not then a resistance movement per se – it was capable of violence, but its prime focus was social work and uncorrupted governance. It wanted to show how well it could govern. Yasin’s comment was revolutionary because liberation trumped dogma and the various ‘schools’ of political Islam. This ultimately was to become ‘Gaza Hamas’ – at odds with its conventional leadership resident in Doha. Sinwar and Dief are ‘Yasin’s children’.

‘Long story short’, a little while later, Yasin, on one of his Friday prayers’ wheel-chair trundles across the road to his adjacent mosque, was blown to pieces by an Israeli missile as he exited. The Muslim Brotherhood wing of Hamas did get their chance to show their hand at governance: They (fairly) won the 2006 Palestinian Authority elections in Gaza, and took a majority of seats – some in the West Bank too. President Bush and Condaleeza Rice were horrified. They had supported the elections … but they never once imagined …Thus, PM Blair and President Bush put together a secret (unacknowledged to the EU) plan in response: Hamas leaders – plus the movements’ social support NGOs – were to be eliminated.

And the Palestinian Authority would crack down on all and every Hamas activity – in close collaboration with Israel. The West Bank, in this plan, would be the recipient of large financial aid to construct a prosperous western-style consumer/security state, and Gaza explicitly was to be impoverished. It would be made to ‘stew in its own juices’ under 16 years of siege; to wallow in poverty. The Israelis gave the Blair plan its empirical basis – calculating exactly how many calories, per head, how much fuel and gas would be allowed to enter Gaza – that would just maintain a subsistence standard of living. And since this Blair-Bush initiative, Palestinians have been irredeemably divided, with no political project even faintly possible.

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Operation Prosperity Guardian..

US Prepares Its Ukraine War Coalition Fleet In The Red Sea (Helmer)

On Monday, General Lloyd Austin, the US Secretary of Defense, announced that the US is assembling a fleet of warships to defend Israel’s port of Eilat, the Gulf of Aqaba, and Israel’s Red Sea shipping route by threatening to attack Yemen if it exercises its Law of the Sea right to regulate military transit through the Bab el-Mandeb Strait. The Austin fleet is to be assembled from the coalition of NATO states at war with Russia in the Ukraine. Austin’s call, announced by the Pentagon while Austin is in Israel, follows the failure of the USS Eisenhower and its squadron, with additional French and British warships, to prevent the collapse of commercial container and tanker shipping to and from Israel. “The recent escalation in reckless Houthi attacks originating from Yemen,” Austin announced, “threatens the free flow of commerce, endangers innocent mariners, and violates international law.

“The Red Sea is a critical waterway that has been essential to freedom of navigation and a major commercial corridor that facilitates international trade. Countries that seek to uphold the foundational principle of freedom of navigation must come together to tackle the challenge posed by this non-state actor launching ballistic missiles and uncrewed aerial vehicles (UAVs) at merchant vessels from many nations lawfully transiting international waters.” “This is an international challenge that demands collective action. Therefore, today I am announcing the establishment of Operation Prosperity Guardian, an important new multinational security initiative under the umbrella of the Combined Maritime Forces and the leadership of its Task Force 153, which focuses on security in the Red Sea.

Operation Prosperity Guardian is bringing together multiple countries to include the United Kingdom, Bahrain, Canada, France, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Seychelles and Spain, to jointly address security challenges in the southern Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden, with the goal of ensuring freedom of navigation for all countries and bolstering regional security and prosperity.” Bahrain on the Persian Gulf — the only Arab state included on Austin’s list — and the Seychelles, the island state in the Indian Ocean, are included to provide shore base facilities for the proposed Yemen-attack fleet. However, no country with naval bases on the Red Sea shore, territorial waters, and exclusive economic zones extending into the waterway — Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Egypt, Sudan, Eritrea, and Djibouti — has publicly agreed to participate or approved this escalation of the Gaza war to benefit Israel. The Pentagon has also asked the Australian Navy for a frigate to join the Red Sea fleet, but the Australian government in Canberra is reluctant to agree, and Austin has dropped the country from his list.

All of the governments on Austin’s list, with the exception of the US, voted last week at the United Nations General Assembly for Israel to halt its operations in the Gaza war. In this context, none of these states recognizes Israel’s right to impose its blockade of Gaza’s ports extending into Palestine’s territorial waters, the Gaza Maritime Area, and Israel’s de facto military rule of the international waters of the Mediterranean, including the Gaza Marine gas field. “Freedom of navigation”, Austin’s version of the legal doctrine of his Operation Prosperity Guardian, does not apply to the Gaza Maritime Area.

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“I am the only candidate who can make this promise to you: I will prevent World War III..”

Middle East ‘Totally Out Of Control’ – Trump (RT)

Former US President Donald Trump has claimed that the current situation in the Middle East is “out of control” and suggested that, unlike Joe Biden, he could avert looming disaster in that region and globally. Trump, who is running for a new term in office, warned that a “catastrophe” could happen in the Middle East if the situation is “not handled with strength and precision,” in comments posted on his social media platform Truth Social on Sunday. In similar remarks made during a campaign rally in Reno, Nevada, he accused the Biden administration of squandering his legacy in the form of the Abraham Accords, with which he claimed to have “made peace” in the region.

Under Trump, the US mediated a series of normalization treaties between Israel and Arab nations. Saudi Arabia was reportedly negotiating a similar arrangement when the October 7 attack by the Palestinian militant group Hamas took place. Israel’s response using overwhelming military action in Gaza has triggered mass outcry in the Muslim world, effectively making such a deal impossible for the foreseeable future. The former president is campaigning on the claim that, under his leadership, the conflict in the Middle East would not have erupted, and neither would the hostilities between Russia and Ukraine. Trump has repeatedly claimed that he could stop the latter crisis in 24 hours. With Biden left in power for another four years after the 2024 election, the world faces an existential threat, Trump told supporters in Nevada. “I am the only candidate who can make this promise to you: I will prevent World War III,” he said.

Trump’s bid to regain the presidency is being undermined by dozens of charges filed against him in several cases, including one that alleges that he sought to defraud voters in Georgia in 2020 by subverting his election loss in the state. He claims to be a victim of political persecution. Biden has been supportive of Israel’s campaign in Gaza, but this position has alienated a large portion of Democratic voters. According to pollster YouGov, as of late November, just 22% of them sympathized with Israelis more than Palestinians, compared to 14% holding the opposite view. The same metrics for Republicans were 63% and 3%, respectively. A majority of American voters would support a ceasefire in both the Middle East and the Ukraine conflicts.

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“Constitution’s Article 18(3): “The exercise of the rights and freedoms of man and citizen shall not violate the rights and freedoms of other people.”

Russian Policy Towards The Gaza War & Palestine Genocide Is Mistaken (Helmer)

In Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s national address of October 28 he erased all differences between the Jewish religion, Zionist ideology, and Israeli state policy. He invoked this trinity in the “chain of heroes of Israel that has continued for over 3,000 years, from Joshua, Judah Maccabee and Bar Kochba, and up to the heroes of 1948, the Six Day War, the Yom Kippur War and Israel’s other wars. Our heroic soldiers have one supreme goal: To destroy the murderous enemy and ensure our existence in our land. We have always said ‘Never again’. ‘Never again’ is now.” And finally, he invoked the benediction of the Jewish God. “On your behalf, on behalf of all of us, I pray for the wellbeing of our soldiers: ‘May G-d make the enemies who rise against us be struck down before them! May He subdue our enemies under them and crown them with deliverance and victory.’”

If Netanyahu were a Russian Israeli, these remarks would be a Russian crime. In the constitution for the multi-ethnic and multicultural Russian Federation, every Russian has the Article 26 right “to determine and indicate his nationality”, and the Article 28 freedom of religious belief, including the right to no religious belief. Russians living in Israel and Palestine have the same rights, which is why the Foreign and Emergencies Ministries are doing everything they can now to evacuate them to Russia if that’s why they request. However, the Russians in Israel, like the Russians in Russia, cannot exercise their Article 26 and 28 rights without accepting the Constitution’s Article 18(3): “The exercise of the rights and freedoms of man and citizen shall not violate the rights and freedoms of other people.”

Speaking jurisprudentially, the one million Russians of Israel – about 90% of whom have taken Israeli nationality under Aliyah, the law of Jewish return – are violating their Article 18(3) duty if they profit from, collaborate in, or defend state and settler terrorism against the Palestinians, wherever and however this is occurring between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea. The Russians of Israel — if that is the nationality they choose in order to apply for evacuation to safe haven — may also be violating the Russian law against terrorism and extremism under Articles 205 and 282 of the Russian Criminal Code depending on where they live, how they live, the arms and military training they have accepted, what they do for a living, and who they vote for in Israeli elections.

According to the Russian Foreign Ministry, Russians at home and also abroad may not support or participate in terrorism propaganda, plans, or acts, whether of the Arab, Muslim, Israeli, Zionist, or Jewish variety. It is not yet settled in Russian foreign policy whether the rights of national liberation and self-defence apply as equally to Palestine state groups like Hamas, Fatah and their associated armed units as they apply to Israel state groups like the Israel Defence Forces (IDF) and their associated armed settler units.

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“The Democrats welcome the invaders as they have ways to add them to Democrat votes. The Republican businessmen welcome the invaders, as they provide cheap labor and hold down US wages..”

The American Political Crisis (Paul Craig Roberts)

It is necessary to understand that Congress and the President are not accountable to the voters. More important than votes is the campaign contributions that lead to election. The House and Senate and President are elected on the basis of large sums of money contributed by the rich and powerful financial and economic interests, such as the military/security complex, Wall Street, the pharmaceutical, energy, agribusiness and other industries. Elected officials have to comply with the interests of those who provide the money, or next election the money goes to their opponents. The Jewish billionaire George Soros uses his money to put in office aggressive partisan Democrat state attorneys general who target Republicans. The result is that the Republicans cannot defend Trump, because the establishment doesn’t want Trump defended.

It is necessary to understand that the US is not a nation. It is a Tower of Babel. Untold millions of immigrant-invaders enter the country illegally every year, for year after year, and nothing can be done to stop the invasion. The Democrats welcome the invaders as they have ways to add them to Democrat votes. The Republican businessmen welcome the invaders, as they provide cheap labor and hold down US wages. The two political parties serving their short-term interests are destroying America. The immigrant-invaders overwhelm the school systems, medical facilities, police, and support systems of affected states and localities, making it difficult for them to service the interests on their municipal bonds. So, you see, it matters not how many votes this or that poll shows this or that candidate has.

Trump is being prosecuted by Democrat prosecutors in courts presided over by Democrat judges in jurisdictions where there are black Democrat juries. Law is being used as a weapon to remove a president and presidential candidate perceived by the establishment to be a threat. Trump will not be permitted to be President. If he is not imprisoned, he will be assassinated, unless the Establishment thinks it can control Trump by controlling his appointments and continuing to harass him. Perhaps the Establishment thinks that 8 years of high stress on an elderly man has done its damage and a little more stress will finish Trump off.

On top of it all, US living standards are falling. Middle class jobs are disappearing and the middle class with them. Many Americans work 2 or 3 part time jobs with no pension or medical benefits. After the Soviet collapse, US corporations began offshoring manufacturing jobs to China and Asia. The Federal Reserve, the central bank, serves the interests of the large banks at the expense of everyone else. In short, the US has become a dysfunctional country. But the foreign policy is still in the hands of the aggressive neoconservatives, who still cling to their agenda of US hegemony, principally to constrain Russia and China and to open the Middle East to Israeli expansion. As I hope this makes clear, the US is unstable across the board. The notion that an election can correct the situation is absurd.

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“The Biden family will stay as far outside the corridors of justice as it can in coming months, avoiding hearings, courtrooms, and legal proceedings for the simple reason it cannot win in any such context..”

Impeachment: Biden Under Formal Investigation (Patrick Lawrence)

Six days before the House vote, the Justice Department unsealed a nine-count indictment charging Hunter Biden with tax evasion, failure to file returns, and “false or fraudulent” returns when he did file them during his dissolute, influence-peddling years, 2016 to 2019. Three of the violations are felonies. In my read the new indictment is more of the same from David Weiss, the corrupt special counsel who has been protecting the Bidens for years: The document is full of rip-roaring language but makes no mention of Hunter’s violations of the Foreign Agents Registration Act, which is the front door leading to Pop’s collaboration as Hunter sold vice-presidential access to the Ukrainians, the Chinese, the Kazakhs, and others. It will be interesting nonetheless to see how this sop to demands for justice plays out.

My prediction: The new indictment is Weiss’s groundwork for another excessively lenient plea bargain such as the one he fashioned last summer but failed to get past a conscientious judge. The question is whether such a plan would withstand sharpening congressional scrutiny — or whether it would worsen the mess that now surrounds the Bidens and their allies. The House Oversight Committee had subpoenaed Hunter Biden to sit for closed-door questioning by the time the grand jury indictments were made public. This session was scheduled for last Wednesday, hours before the House impeachment vote. Hunter is now threatened with a contempt of Congress citation for failing to appear. The younger Biden instead gave a press conference in front of the Capitol during which he got two things done.

One, he altered the Biden regime’s story for the second time. As readers will recall, the president’s first claim — he never discussed Hunter’s business with him — evolved some time ago into, “The president was never in business with Hunter.” Last week Hunter had it this way: “Let me state as clearly as I can: My father was not financially involved in my business.” If you net this out, it amounts to an implicit admission that Pop lied in his earlier versions of the Biden family story. It was on this point that a Fox News reporter sent Jean–Pierre into near hysterics last week. Two, during his appearance at the Capitol with microphones before him like bouquets of flowers, Hunter Biden lapsed into the tinniest of Pop’s many public-relations ploys: He played the pity card by pimping his personal difficulties. “They ridiculed my struggle with addiction; they belittled my recovery,” he complained of those running the impeachment proceedings. “And they have tried to dehumanize me — all to embarrass and damage my father, who has devoted his entire public life to service.”

I don’t see how much of this spaghetti will stick to the wall, but the tableau tells us something important. The Biden family will stay as far outside the corridors of justice as it can in coming months, avoiding hearings, courtrooms, and legal proceedings for the simple reason it cannot win in any such context. I have not yet heard of a court of public opinion trumping a court of law, but, desperate as the Bidens are at this point, it seems the only strategy available to them.

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“Instead, it directly targets core protected political speech and activity. For this reason, it is categorically invalid under the First Amendment.”

Trump Attorneys Ask Fulton County Judge to Dismiss Indictment (ET)

Former President Trump’s Georgia attorneys submitted a court filing on Dec. 18 arguing that the former president’s comments were political speech protected under the Constitution’s First Amendment in the aftermath of the 2020 election. “Every single alleged overt act listed and count charged against President Trump seeks to criminalize content-based, core political speech and expressive conduct,” President Trump’s team wrote.
The former president and more than a dozen other people were indicted in Fulton County, Georgia, by District Attorney Fani Willis, who accused them of conspiring to overturn the election in the state. Several defendants in the case have pleaded guilty in exchange for more lenient punishment, although President Trump and the remaining defendants have pleaded not guilty.

On Dec. 18, the former president’s lawyers said that even if the facts that the prosecutors have alleged are true, a judge should dismiss the indictment as a violation of his core First Amendment rights. “This Court should hold that the First Amendment’s guarantee of freedom of speech, when applied to the core political speech and expressive conduct alleged in the indictment against a President of the United States, demands a pretrial remedy and that remedy is dismissal of the indictment,” the lawyers said. But Ms. Willis’ case “does not merely criminalize conduct with an incidental impact on protected speech,” they said. “Instead, it directly targets core protected political speech and activity. For this reason, it is categorically invalid under the First Amendment.”

Ms. Willis has said she is seeking an August trial date for President Trump and the remaining co-defendants, a time frame that would put the current front-runner for the Republican presidential nomination in court defending himself in the months, weeks, and even days leading up to the November general election. Trump lawyer Steve Sadow has said that if the former president is the nominee, this would be “the most effective election interference in the history of the United States.” Ms. Willis’s team has also said they want to have a single trial for the rest of the defendants. Fulton County Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee, who is presiding over the case, has expressed skepticism about the idea of trying too many people at once. He said earlier this month that even 12 people at once could be a stretch.

Prosecutors and defense attorneys have been exchanging evidence. Pretrial motions for most of the defendants are due early next month. In an interview with The Associated Press, Ms. Willis said she believes more of the co-defendants will take plea deals, although she did not elaborate. Attorney Sidney Powell, Trump attorney Jenna Ellis, attorney Kenneth Chesebro, and bail bondsman Scott Hall have taken plea deals in exchange for guilty pleas. Last week, Ms. Powell issued a 13-word apology, which was part of the plea agreement. “I apologize for my actions in connection with the events in Coffee County,” she wrote.

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How to start WWIII.

Yatsenyuk Suggests How West Could Pressure Russia (RT)

Meaningful negotiations between Ukraine and Russia will only be possible if the West demonstrates readiness to fight Russia and secure NATO membership for Ukraine, former Ukrainian prime minister Arseny Yatsenyuk has said. In an interview with Espreso TV on Saturday, Yatsenyuk, who headed the government in the first two years after the Maidan coup in 2014, acknowledged that negotiations with Russian President Vladimir Putin in the current format are “unrealistic.” Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky has insisted that the conflict should be settled based on his so-called ten-point peace plan, which calls for Russia’s withdrawal from all territories claimed by Kiev, reparations from Moscow, and a war crimes tribunal. Zelensky also officially banned any talks with Putin last year.

Yatsenyuk, who now chairs the Kiev Security Forum, said he can “hardly imagine” a scenario in which talks between Kiev and Moscow would lead to Russia’s withdrawal of its troops and the payment of reparations, while Ukraine joins NATO and the EU at the same time. He recalled how Russia submitted proposals for long-term security guarantees to the US and NATO in December 2021, shortly before the outbreak of the conflict in Ukraine. Moscow’s demands included preventing the further eastward expansion of NATO, denying accession to the alliance of the former USSR states, and limiting the bloc’s military activities close to Russian borders. However, the West refused to discuss the Russian proposals.

According to the former prime minister, NATO and EU member states should play the “very same game” as Russia did back then and tell Moscow that “we’ve made a political decision, Ukraine will be a member of NATO. Full stop. We are not discussing this decision with you.” “Within this decision, we invite you to sign a new agreement between Russia and NATO, a new agreement on conventional arms control in Europe, a new START agreement on the limitation of strategic nuclear weapons, a new agreement on cybersecurity,” Yatsenyuk continued. He agreed when the host pointed out that Moscow would never agree to such terms, but insisted that the move would still put Kiev and the West in a stronger position. “To the world’s publicity, we will say this: ‘We wanted exactly this kind of negotiation with Russia, we offered them what we could, and Russia refused it too,’” the former PM explained.

Yatsenyuk then said peace talks would only make sense “if the West was ready to demonstrate such political will,” calling it “the establishment of a new world order.” “I want the West to theoretically agree to this model and reaffirm the readiness to fight for the new member [Ukraine],” he concluded. Moscow has repeatedly indicated that it is ready for a dialogue with a view to ending the conflict in Ukraine, so long as Russia’s core interests are respected. On Friday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said any talks would have to account for “Russia’s legitimate interests,” and must mean “putting an end to attempts to build [one’s] own security at the expense of others,” referring to Ukraine’s efforts to join the NATO bloc.

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“Maybe Hungary can create more trouble. Maybe Hungary can force us to use a few different tools. But ultimately Hungary cannot stop us providing money to Ukraine..”

EU May Strip Hungary Of Voting Rights To Seal Ukraine Aid Deal – FT (TASS)

EU member states are considering the possibility of stripping Hungary of its voting rights in order to conclude an agreement on allocating funds to Ukraine, The Financial Times has quoted European diplomats as saying. According to the officials, the EU may apply Article 7 of the 2007 European Union Treaty, which allows for depriving a country of the right to vote due to a violation of European legislation. This process can be blocked by any other EU member, but as the daily notes, after Poland’s recent elections, “Hungary no longer has a guaranteed protector” the EU. Despite this, some EU members are wary of the idea of imposing restrictions on Budapest. Instead, they intend to demonstrate to Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban the “full costs” of isolating the country within the EU in order to force him to change his mind regarding the allocation of funds to Ukraine.

If that fails, the FT says, the EU’s 26 other members could strike a deal on their own, although “it would take time and only offer a short-term fix.” “Maybe Hungary can create more trouble. Maybe Hungary can force us to use a few different tools. But ultimately Hungary cannot stop us providing money to Ukraine,” said another EU senior official present at the summit. On December 15, Orban said that Budapest did not intend to support the idea of financial aid to Ukraine from the EU budget. He confirmed that at the EU summit in Brussels he had blocked an amendment to the EU budget that envisaged the allocation of 50 billion euros to Ukraine in 2024-2027.

Fico

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“We take any breach of our rules very seriously. And the evidence we currently have is enough to formally open a proceeding against X..”

Brussels Launches Legal Action Against Elon Musk’s X (EN)

The European Commission has launched legal action against social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter, under its landmark rules for online platforms, the Digital Services Act (DSA). The executive said Monday it would probe whether X may have breached EU rules “in areas linked to risk management, content moderation, dark patterns, advertising transparency and data access for researchers.” The move represents the first-ever proceeding under the DSA, which was designed to create a safer space online, and adds further turmoil to a company that has struggled to find a stable footing since the $44-billion acquisition by Elon Musk. It follows a request for information sent by the Commission to X in October after it received indications the platform was spreading illegal content and disinformation, particularly terrorist and violent content in the context of the Israel-Hamas war.

Since August 2023, X is one of 17 platforms designated under the DSA as a “very large online platform,” which makes it subject to new, stringent norms on the dissemination of illegal content, the protection of fundamental rights and public security. “We take any breach of our rules very seriously. And the evidence we currently have is enough to formally open a proceeding against X,” said Margrethe Vestager, the European Commission’s executive vice-president. The opening of the proceeding makes it clear that “the time of big online platforms behaving like they are ‘too big to care’ has come to an end,” said Thierry Breton, the European Commissioner for the internal market, promising an “in-depth investigation.” The executive will continue monitoring the platform’s compliance with all other obligations under the DSA and could take further action if any wrongdoing is detected, said a Commission spokesperson. The Commission has urged the company to “cooperate” on the probe, the spokesperson added.

Four potential infringements: The Commission said on Monday its investigation would focus on alleged breaches under four articles of the DSA related to: • The dissemination of illegal content, including measures taken to identify and swiftly remove illegal content and to allow users to flag such content. • Measures taken to combat information manipulation, such as the so-called “community notes” introduced in 2021 to debunk misleading posts. • Measures to increase transparency, amid suspected failures to provide researchers with adequate access to X’s publicly accessible data, including on paid ads. • The suspected deceptive design of X’s user interface, such as the so-called “blue checkmark,” a paid-for continuation promoted by Elon Musk that designates a user as an “active, notable, and authentic” member of the platform.

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“..the law against “obstructing official proceedings,” is about to be adjudicated in the US Supreme Court involving convicted J-6 defendants..”

In the Game of Strip Poker, Someone Ends Up Naked (Kunstler)

The blob’s weakness and idiocy are clearly on display in the four court cases against Mr. Trump, which look like a cartoon of thieves throwing stuff out of a hijacked furniture truck at the cars in pursuit behind them. There’s DA Alvin Bragg’s joke case in Manhattan around the dead-on-arrival Stormy Daniels business. End-of-story, as T0ny Soprano always liked to say. New York’s AG, Letitia James, vowed to get Mr. Trump on something, anything, while electioneering, and delivered a bullshit case to Judge Arthur Engoron that is sure to get tossed on appeal — and will eventually get both Ms. James and the Judge disbarred (and possibly prosecuted) for their trouble. There’s Fulton County (GA) DA Fani Willis’s laughable RICO rap against Trump, Guiliani, et al,. for complaining about the obviously janky ballot-counting activity there in 2020.

And then, there are US AG Merrick Garland’s two cases against the former president. The DC case brought under Special Counsel Jack Smith, claiming that Mr. Trump somehow led an “insurrection” at the US Capitol on 1/6/21. This turkey was rehearsed in earlier House J-6 Committee hearings, so shabbily staged that Chairman Bennie Thompson (D-MS) arranged to have all the evidence destroyed (including witness deposition transcripts) as soon as the hearings wrapped. Mr. Trump’s defense is probably immaterial in Judge Tanya Chutkan’s DC courtroom. But one of the case’s main predicates, the law against “obstructing official proceedings,” is about to be adjudicated in the US Supreme Court involving convicted J-6 defendants. If the court tosses it, Jack Smith’s case goes out the window too. If not, and Mr. Trump is successfully railroaded by Judge Chutkin, you can be sure the appeal will be expedited to SCOTUS and die there. If there even is a trial before the election of 2024. In any case, Mr. Trump will still be on the ballot next November.

The second Garland / Jack Smith case is the most interesting. That would be the Mar-a-Lago documents case. According to the reporter who styles himself as “Sundance” at The Last Refuge news site, the purpose of the August 2022 Mar-a-Lago raid was not to seek classified documents at issue in a dispute between the former president and the National Archives — as the public has been given to understand by the blob’s news media. The actual purpose was to find a 10-inch-thick dossier of documents collected over many months by Mr. Trump’s deputies to be used in future prosecutions of DOJ, FBI, and other officials and private persons (including Hillary Clinton, the DNC, the DNC’s law firm Perkins Coie,) who were implicated in the Russia collusion hoax, especially after the failure of Special Counsel John Durham to even depose many of these parties and persons.

There were apparently many copies made of Mr. Trump’s dossier, and distributed among anti-blobsters, but these were all heavily redacted — names were all blacked out. The binder at Mar-a-Lago was unredacted and this was what the FBI was after in the August 2022 raid. Is there any chance by now that the FBI hasn’t disposed of 10,000 emails and documents that were in its possession pertaining to the Russia hoax and other crimes? Do you suppose that the unredacted Trump dossier was the only copy? I wouldn’t. So far, Mr. Trump and his lawyers have not mentioned this. Why wouldn’t they play this hand close to the chest? Will it be consequential in the long and tortured course of things? What do you think?

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The US wants him gone..

Secret Pakistan Document Undermines Espionage Case Against Imran Khan (IC)

A crucial document from Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence agency, or ISI, undermines a major plank in the high-profile prosecution of the country’s former prime minister, Imran Khan. Khan remains behind bars while he faces trial for allegedly mishandling a secret document, known as a cypher, which the prosecution claims compromised the integrity of the encrypted communication system used by the state’s security apparatus. But according to an ISI analysis leaked to The Intercept, that claim is entirely false. Internally, the agency concluded that the leak of the text of a cypher could in no way compromise the integrity of the system, an assessment contrary to public claims made repeatedly by prosecutors.The main charge against Khan relates to his handling of a diplomatic cable describing a key meeting in March 2022 between U.S. and Pakistani officials in Washington.

Khan, while prime minister, had repeatedly alluded to the existence of a cypher that outlined U.S. pressure on Pakistan to remove him from power in a vote of no confidence. Though he never disclosed its full contents, at times, in public speeches, he quoted statements recorded in it from U.S. officials promising to reward Pakistan for his ouster. At one rally, Khan even waved what he said was the printed text of the document, without revealing its exact contents. Prosecutors assert that Khan damaged Pakistani national security by exposing the text of this encrypted document, contents they say could potentially be used by rival intelligence agencies to crack the code of a wide range of other secret Pakistani communications. A criminal complaint against Khan alleges that he “compromised the entire cypher security system of the state and secret communication method of Pakistani missions abroad,” through his alleged mishandling of the cypher.

The former prime minister faces up to 10 years in prison if found guilty under Pakistan’s Official Secrets Act and could face the death penalty if charged with treason in the case. On August 9, 2023, The Intercept published the text of the cypher outlining U.S. pressure against Pakistan to remove Khan. Shortly afterward, Pakistan’s own intelligence agency issued an assessment addressing the very question of how damaging publishing such a text would be. The internal conclusion of the ISI was crystal clear: No threat to Pakistan’s encryption existed.On August 11, two days after The Intercept story was published, an internal request for information was sent to the ISI by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The question at hand: Does the revelation of the plain text of such a cypher compromise the integrity of the system’s encryption?

The response, filed by the Inter-Services Intelligence Secretariat under the heading ISI-Policy Matters, and titled “Breach of Crypto Security,” determined that contrary to the present charges against Khan, revealing the text of a cypher poses no risk to the government’s encrypted communications network. “If plain text of an encrypted message (cryptogram) … is leaked it has no effect on security of encryptor,” the analysis, which was filed on August 23, concludes. “Leakage of a plain text message does not compromise the algorithm.”

Concern about the security of an encryption system is not entirely unfounded. Some encryption systems can theoretically be compromised by what is known as a “plaintext attack,” in which an attacker has access to a copy of both the plain and encrypted versions of a document’s text and can use the two versions to determine the encryption system.But the spy agency’s conclusion in the days following The Intercept’s publication of the secret cypher was that the disclosure of the short piece of text alone — without the encryption key — did not pose a risk. “If plain text of an encrypted message (cryptogram) using DTE is leaked, it has no effect on security of the encryptor due to following,” the analysis reads, referring to “an offline encryption device.”

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“It’s the perfect crime because there is a long delay between the pulling of the trigger and the collapse due to the bullet. You see what I mean? Sometimes it can take people two years to succumb to the consequences of taking the shot..”

Rolling Thunder Global Propaganda – Mark Crispin Miller (USAW)

New York University (NYU) Professor Mark Crispin Miller (MCM) is an expert in propaganda. Dr. Miller says from infection to injection, Covid 19 was a global “propaganda masterpiece.” Propaganda on this level has never happened before in human history. Dr. Miller explains, “The media has been crucial to this entire operation, and I would take that a little further. I would say since the beginning of 2020, we have been subjected to a ‘Rolling Thunder of Propaganda’ drives one after another. First, there was the (CV19) virus panic. Then, there was the George Floyd moment. Now, there is a new documentary that shows George Floyed was not actually murdered. . . . It’s called ‘The Fall of Minneapolis.’ . . . . There was the 2020 Election. There was the so-called ‘insurrection.’ That was a wave of crackpot hysteria . . . because it was not an insurrection . . . or coup attempt.

Then, there was Ukraine, and the entire back story of Russia’s invasion was completely missing from all the coverage. . . . This is all the result of the media doing the opposite of what it is supposed to do. The ‘Framers’ (of the Constitution) realized the absolute necessity of having a free press. . . . This was before the corporate media cartels, which is what we have now. . . . The Framers knew . . . to offer a counterforce to federal power, we absolutely had to have a free press. . . . The reason why the press has First Amendment protections is it . . .tells truths the federal authorities does not want us to know. To say the press has failed abysmally is actually giving them too much credit. They have been instrumental throughout this nightmare, whose aim is radical depopulation and destruction of democracy. . . . if you just tell the other side of the story, you are public enemy #1.”

With more than 700 million mRNA CV19 bioweapon injections in the US alone and more than 13 billion CV19 injections globally, the implications of this depopulation agenda is the biggest story ever short of a global thermal nuclear exchange. This, too, was part of the “Rolling Thunder Global Propaganda” campaign. Dr. Miller has dedicated his Substack to reveal mounting and massive deaths and injuries one person at a time. Many doctors are revealing data and sources proving the CV19 vax did not help a single person. Dr. Miller calls the CV19 so-called vaccine “the perfect crime.” Dr. Miller explains, “It’s the perfect crime because there is a long delay between the pulling of the trigger and the collapse due to the bullet. You see what I mean? Sometimes it can take people two years to succumb to the consequences of taking the shot. It’s the perfect crime. I also liken it to the infamous mass murders of mid-century. . . . This had much more sophistication than those mass murders.

It’s not just the bigger numbers, but they got people to take this willingly. Hitler, Stalin and Pol Pot were all coercive. . . . This is the first mass murder that is the result of getting people to clamor for it. The panic over the Corona virus was so successful that people were craving vaccination—craving it.” The good news from Dr. Miller is that it appears people are waking up at a fast pace. He points to the low uptake of more CV19 boosters in a range of only 3%. Dr. Miller is dedicated to waking people up to the mass propaganda psyop that has led people in a disastrous direction. Dr. Miller says, “People can subscribe to my Substack, and you can do it for free. I am doing this for the public good. I am always grateful for paid subscribers because I am on disability now as a professor at NYU, but I am not doing it for that reason. I am doing it because something really, really evil is going on, and people have to snap out of it. People have to wake up. I do believe people can wake up, and there are indications that people are waking up.”


From the comments on the Mark Crispin Miller article.

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X thread.

Pfizer Seeks To Treat Most TURBO CANCERS Caused By mRNA Vaccines (Makis)

Pfizer completes $43 Billion acquisition of Seagen on Dec.14, 2023 – becomes largest oncology company to treat most TURBO CANCERS caused by mRNA Vaccines – deep dive into the sinister aspects of this very bizarre deal. Pfizer OVERPAYS $43 billion on small Cancer Drug Company that barely makes $2 billion a year. Pfizer doesn’t need the cash. It will also issue $31 billion in debt to purchase it. Everyone is taking this at face value. But something very sinister lurks in the details of this deal. Pfizer (and Moderna) COVID-19 mRNA Vaccines cause Turbo Cancers. Based on my published description of 100s of Turbo Cancer cases in over 30 articles: Here are the Top 5 Turbo Cancers we will see by numbers in mRNA Vaccinated people:

• Lymphoma (various types) • Brain Cancers (mostly glioblastoma) • Breast Cancer (mostly triple negative, Stage 3/4) • Colon Cancer (Stage 4) • Lung Cancer (Stage 4). Rounding out the Top 10 Turbo Cancers by # of people affected (no particular order): • leukemias (worst prognosis) • melanomas (Stage 4) • sarcomas (Stage 3,4) • testicular/ovarian (rapid progression, Stage 1-4) • kidney (RCC Stage 4). Pfizer’s new acquisition takes them from being able to treat 2 of these Turbo Cancers, to being able to treat 7 out of 10. Not bad. But there’s more. Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla did a media interview tour about the $43 Billion Cancer drug deal and this is what he has to say:

– 33% of people WILL get cancer (he’s certain)
– entire families WILL be affected (he’s certain)
– The new cancer treatments are like “missiles” that will target “most” cancers
– he will produce them AT A SCALE THAT HAS NOT BEEN SEEN BEFORE.
– 2025
– “We have a Global Network”
– ” we have very quick way of completing clinical trials”
– will be produced “AT SCALE”, “just like mRNA”

Think about what he is telegraphing. Read the above again. Why would any company need to produce cancer treatments “AT SCALE”? Seeking Alpha analysis theorizes it would take Pfizer at least a decade just to break even from this deal. Financially, this $43 billion Acquisition makes NO SENSE for Pfizer. Unless something else happens…

Read more …

 

 

 

 

Be kind

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lucky chops

 

 

China students

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Dec 012023
 
 December 1, 2023  Posted by at 9:57 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , ,  43 Responses »


Pierre Bonnard Nude in an Interior c1935

 

IDF Resumes Gaza Strip Bombing, Says Hamas Violated Truce (Sp.)
US Lectures Israel Over Gaza War – Leaks (RT)
Israel Had Actual Hamas Attack Plan A Year Before Oct. 7 Assault (Week)
What Arab States Can Do To Punish Israel (Shami)
Ukrainian Authorities Prepare People For Truce With Russia (Sp.)
Stoltenberg Prepares NATO to Accept Russian Demands (Sp.)
US Offers NATO Reality Check To Ukraine (RT)
Germany Warns Against ‘Fatal’ Ukraine Fatigue (RT)
World Laughing At Germany’s Leaders – Putin (RT)
Ukraine Is Not Fighting For Europe – Hungary (RT)
Bank Raised Red Flags About Biden Family’s $5m China Loan (JT)
Texas Sues Pfizer For “Misrepresenting COVID-19 Vaccine Efficacy” (ZH)
Trump Gag Order Reinstated By NY Appeals Court (ZH)
House Panel Chairman Says J6 Videotapes Of Witness Interviews Missing (JTN)
Time To Boycott Elon’s Boycotters (ZH)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Netanyahu is Deadly Wrong | Col. Larry Wilkerson

 

 

Macgregor: Turkey sends an ultimatum to Netanyahu, 2M soldiers are ready to flatten Israel

 

 

Nap/Macgregor

 

 

 

 

Evil done for its own sake
https://twitter.com/i/status/1730164779392925835

 

 

 

 

Rudy Havenstein:

“People are moving out of cash,”

Mostly into rent, food and healthcare.”

 

 

 

 

“It’s all their fault..”

IDF Resumes Gaza Strip Bombing, Says Hamas Violated Truce (Sp.)

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) said on Friday that it had resumed fighting against Palestinian movement Hamas in the Gaza Strip, as the latter violated the humanitarian pause by opening fire on the Israeli territory. “Hamas violated the operational pause, and in addition, fired toward Israeli territory. The IDF has resumed combat against the Hamas terrorist organization in the Gaza Strip,” the IDF wrote on Telegram. Israeli fighter jets are currently hitting Hamas targets in the Gaza Strip, the Israel Defense Forces said. “The Wall Street Journal reported late on Thursday, that the two sides had agreed to extend a temporary humanitarian pause for an eighth day.

Last week, Qatar mediated a deal between Israel and Hamas on a four-day truce and the exchange of some of the prisoners and hostages, as well as the delivery of humanitarian aid into the Gaza Strip. On Monday, Qatar announced that an agreement had been reached between Israel and Hamas on a two-day extension of the truce on the same terms as the previous one. Earlier on Thursday, the ceasefire was extended for a seventh day.

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“They have a our full support, but we told them to be nice about it..”

US Lectures Israel Over Gaza War – Leaks (RT)

Israel lacks “credit” to keep the fight against Hamas going for months and needs to change its tactics in the south of Gaza, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said at a war cabinet meeting on Thursday, according to Israel’s Channel 12. Blinken was in Jerusalem for meetings with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the cabinet overseeing the war on the Palestinian militant group. Some of the quotes from the meeting somehow made their way to Channel 12, Israel’s most popular commercial TV station, which aired them on Thursday evening. “You can’t operate in southern Gaza in the way you did in the north. There are two million Palestinians there,” Blinken said at one point, according to a translation from Hebrew posted by the Times of Israel.

“You need to evacuate fewer people from their homes, be more accurate in the attacks, not hit UN facilities, and ensure that there are enough protected areas,” the US diplomat added. “And if not? Then not to attack where there is a civilian population.” When Defense Minister Yoav Gallant said that the entire Israeli society was united behind the objective of dismantling Hamas, “even if it takes months,” Blinken replied, “I don’t think you have the credit for that.” The leaked quotes also revealed that Israel does not want the Palestinian Authority to ever rule Gaza, because it “supports, educates, and finances terror,” according to Netanyahu. Blinken said the US understands that, but “other states in the region need to know what you are planning,” because “The best way to kill an idea is to bring a better idea.” Washington has backed Israel’s offensive against Gaza after the October 7 raid by Hamas that resulted in the deaths of an estimated 1,200 Israelis.

Since then, however, the US government has faced public backlash over the deaths of some 16,000 Palestinians in the enclave, many of them women and children. According to a statement issued by the State Department, Blinken has “reaffirmed the United States’ support for Israel’s right to protect itself from terrorist violence in compliance with international humanitarian law and urged Israel to take every possible measure to avoid civilian harm.” Blinken also urged “immediate steps to hold settler extremists accountable for violence against Palestinians in the West Bank” and said the US “remains committed to tangible steps to advance a Palestinian state living in peace, freedom, and security alongside Israel,” according to State Department spokesman Matthew Miller.

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Option 1: Israel didn’t take it serious.
Option 2: Israel had a year to prepare its response…

Israel Had Actual Hamas Attack Plan A Year Before Oct. 7 Assault (Week)

Israel possessed what turned out to be remarkably accurate Hamas plans for an attack on southern Israel for more than a year before the Palestinian militants launched their Oct. 7 terrorist incursion, The New York Times reported Thursday. “But Israeli military and intelligence officials dismissed the plan as aspirational, considering it too difficult for Hamas to carry out” and out of step with Israel’s view that Hamas wasn’t interested in war. The roughly 40-page document was “circulated widely among Israeli military and intelligence leaders,” who code-named it “Jericho Wall,” the Times reported. It “outlined, point by point, exactly the kind of devastating invasion that led to the deaths of about 1,200 people.”The Israeli military officials in charge of the Gaza sector initially said they weren’t sure what the document revealed about Hamas’ intentions, the Times reported.

But on July 6, three months before the attack, a veteran Israeli signals intelligence analyst warned that Hamas was conducting training exercises that matched the “Jericho Wall” plan, and that its military capabilities were more advanced than believed. A colonel in the Gaza division brushed off her analysis, writing in an encrypted email that the training exercise was part of a “totally imaginative” scenario and Israel should “wait patiently,” the Times reported. “It is unclear whether Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu or other top political leaders saw the document,” the Times said, but Israeli and U.S. media reported that Egypt warned Netanyahu’s government repeatedly that Hamas was planning something big. “We know that Egypt has warned the Israelis three days prior that an event like this could happen,” Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas) told reporters after an Oct. 11 closed-door intelligence briefing.

Israel’s failure to heed the warnings and connect the dots before Oct. 7, which ended up being the deadliest day in Israeli history, is considered the country’s greatest intelligence failure since missing the surprise attack that started the 1973 Arab-Israeli war. Israel has vowed to destroy Hamas so it can never threaten Israel again. That includes an order by Netanyahu “to kill Hamas leaders around the world when the nation’s war in the Gaza Strip winds down,” The Wall Street Journal reported, and Israeli spies are already plotting to assassinate Hamas leaders living in Lebanon, Turkey and Qatar. Israel has a long, checkered history of secret assassinations, but Netanyahu “telegraphed his intentions” in a Nov. 22 nationwide address, the Journal noted.

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A lot more than they have so far..

What Arab States Can Do To Punish Israel (Shami)

Despite widespread sentiment against Israeli aggressions across West Asia and the wider Islamic world, the summit, as many expected, concluded without concrete actions against Israel, underscoring the weakness and unwillingness of 22 Arab leaders to confront Israel and its western allies. It raises a pivotal question: In lieu of a collective decision by the Arab League, what can individual Arab nations do to support Palestine, and why haven’t they done these things already? To unravel the complexities of Arab geopolitics, and for the sake of simplifying the region’s various world views and priorities, Arab states can be categorized into three main political groupings – each influenced by non-Arab actors: the US, Turkiye, and Iran.

The foreign policies of Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Kuwait, Bahrain, Oman, Jordan, Egypt, Morocco, and Djibouti – most governed by hereditary monarchies – align closely with the US and the west. Despite hosting numerous US military bases, these states, paradoxically, could play a substantial role in supporting Palestine without resorting to conflict. Morocco, the UAE, Bahrain, Sudan, Egypt, and Jordan all have economic, political, and security relations with Israel. Yet, unlike distant Latin American countries, none have severed ties, although Bahrain did suspend its economic ties. Instead, the Israeli embassies in Jordan, Morocco, Egypt, and Bahrain were evacuated by the order of Foreign Minister Eli Cohen and the Ministry’s Director-General due to massive protests in support of Palestinians. The most strategically important states in this grouping are Jordan and Egypt, both of which share borders with Israel, and have the longest-established relations with Tel Aviv.

Egypt, a key player since the Camp David Accords were signed in 1979, has the ability to immediately influence events in Gaza. But from presidents Anwar Sadat to present day’s Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, Cairo has instead worked overtime to safeguard Israel’s southern border and actively engages in energy deals to boost their mutual economies. If it chooses to do so, Egypt can block Israeli ships in the Suez Canal, open the Rafah Crossing to Gaza to flood the besieged territory with essential aid, and halt intelligence cooperation – today, and bloodlessly. Jordan, which shares the longest border with the occupation state, lacks substantial means to counter Israeli influence. However, Amman could cut ties with Israel and threaten Tel Aviv that it will loosen its border controls – potentially allowing foreign fighters and weapons to infiltrate into the occupied West Bank – a scenario that Tel Aviv fears greatly.

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“..Russia has never refused talks, but the other side must make it clear that it is ready for them.”

Ukrainian Authorities Prepare People For Truce With Russia (Sp.)

The West and some Ukrainian politicians are beginning to prepare the people for a peaceful settlement of the conflict with Russia, said Ukrainian political scientist Ruslan Bortnik. “Western media and some of our politicians are already hanging this gun on the wall so that we can see it, so that we can get used to the sight of it. Obviously, certain preparations need to be made for possible negotiations,” the expert said. According to him, two factors are influencing the approach to the negotiations – a decrease in the amount of aid from the West and a failed attempt to bring the countries of the South to Kiev’s side.

The analyst added that the unstable state of the West forces Kiev to reconsider its general strategy of fighting Russia and return to the issue of peace. Russia has repeatedly expressed its readiness for negotiations, but the Kiev authorities have imposed a ban on them. The Kremlin also noted that now there are no preconditions for the situation to move in a peaceful direction, and the special operation’s goals remain a priority for Moscow. According to President Vladimir Putin, Russia has never refused talks, but the other side must make it clear that it is ready for them.

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“..make it easier for alliance members to accept that Russia’s demands for Kiev’s neutrality will likely to be accepted in future peace talks..”

Stoltenberg Prepares NATO to Accept Russian Demands (Sp.)

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg has changed his rhetoric with regard to Ukraine to make it easier for alliance members to accept that Russia’s demands for Kiev’s neutrality will likely to be accepted in future peace talks, Belgian military expert Pierre Henrot told Sputnik. Earlier in the week, Stoltenberg acknowledged that Ukraine had failed to advance its front line in the conflict with Russia over the past year even with NATO’s “significant” support, urging the alliance not to underestimate Russia’s defense capabilities. “It has been made repeatedly clear that the first demand by Russia, if and when negotiations start, would be that Ukraine remain neutral and never enter NATO,” Henrot said.

“Now that it becomes evident that Ukraine is going to lose this conflict, Stoltenberg prepares the allies, especially European public opinion, to the fact that this condition of strict neutrality of Ukraine that has been continuously demanded by Russia since the early 1990s will have to be applied.”The expert to Stoltenberg repeatedly and on multiple occasions saying that Ukraine could potentially join the alliance only after the conflict. At the same time the NATO headquarters understands any negotiation will have to deal first with Russia’s demand of Kiev’s strict neutrality, according to Henrot. The NATO foreign ministers’ meeting took place in Brussels from Tuesday to Wednesday to address the situation in Ukraine and the Palestine-Israel conflict.

As a result of the NATO Summit in Vilnius from July 11-12, NATO leaders agreed on a package of three elements to bring Ukraine closer to the alliance. The first element is the creation of an assistance program for Ukraine that will facilitate its transition to NATO standards, training and doctrine. The second element is the establishment of a NATO-Ukraine Council, and the third is the cancellation of the Membership Action Plan for Ukraine, which will allow Kiev’s accession process to be shortened from two steps to one. However, the bloc has not extended an official invitation to Kiev.

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“Ukraine is well on the path of NATO, as well as to the European Union, with the accession process, uh, beginning..”

US Offers NATO Reality Check To Ukraine (RT)

Ukraine will join the US-led military alliance only after it meets all conditions and secures the consent of every member, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken repeated on Wednesday when asked about a proposal to fast-track the process. Blinken and Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmitry Kuleba made a short press appearance on the sidelines of a NATO ministerial meeting in Brussels, painting an optimistic picture of Kiev’s current situation. “We reaffirm the commitment made in Vilnius that Ukraine will become a member of NATO when allies agree and conditions are met,” Blinken said. “Ukraine is well on the path of NATO, as well as to the European Union, with the accession process, uh, beginning,” he added.

Kuleba described the meeting with Blinken as “a clear no to fatigue, a clear yes to continued and increased support to Ukraine.” Blinken was quoting the joint communique from the July summit in Lithuania, which said that NATO “will be in a position to extend an invitation to Ukraine to join the alliance when allies agree and conditions are met.” Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky had reacted to the communique by calling NATO weak and its behavior “unprecedented and absurd,” drawing the ire of Washington. Earlier this month, former NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen – now an adviser to the government in Kiev – proposed admitting Ukraine within the boundaries of territory it currently controls, thereby making it subject to the bloc’s Article 5 security guarantees.

Zelensky’s chief of staff, Andrey Yermak, rejected Rasmussen’s offer within days, saying there could be no compromise on Ukraine’s “independence, territorial integrity, sovereignty.” Russia has repeatedly made clear that no form of Ukraine’s membership in NATO would be acceptable to Moscow. Zelensky’s top MP and former head negotiator in Istanbul, David Arakhamia, admitted last week that Kiev could have stopped the conflict in April 2022 by agreeing to the Russian demand for neutrality, but said that the West urged Ukraine to keep fighting.

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“The view of Ukraine is currently disappearing from the public – that is fatal..”

Germany Warns Against ‘Fatal’ Ukraine Fatigue (RT)

Dwindling public attention to the Ukraine conflict will be “fatal,” German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock has said, in the run-up to a key NATO meeting in Brussels on Wednesday. The first meeting of the NATO-Ukraine Council on the level of foreign ministers took place amid a “stalemate” on the frontline, as described by the top Ukrainian general, Valery Zaluzhny, earlier this month. Dmitry Kuleba, Kiev’s top diplomat, rejected the assessment ahead of the meeting.Western fatigue with Ukraine and its problems topped the agenda during the session, but according to German news program Tagesschau, the ministers offered no concrete solutions. “The view of Ukraine is currently disappearing from the public – that is fatal,” Baerbock warned, as quoted by the German Foreign Ministry on social media.

“We all have to work to further extend the winter protection umbrella for Ukraine,” she added, referring to bolstering Ukraine’s air defenses against Russian attacks. A short communique released by NATO after the meeting said the council has “proven to be a reliable crisis consultation mechanism.” Ukraine and members of the bloc are developing “a roadmap for Ukraine’s transition to full interoperability with NATO” – that is, switching Ukraine from Soviet to Western weapons and military tactics. Western media has reported numerous complaints by Ukrainian troops that the training they receive from NATO states is not applicable to the conflict with Russia.

Kuleba reiterated Kiev’s pitch for unrestricted support of his nation, touting the Ukrainian army as a proxy force prepared to sacrifice their lives fighting against the Russians. “The best way to avoid sending your own soldiers into a war is to help another country fight its own war,” the minister told the press. “This is what makes us very different from others. Our deal is very fair. You give us all we need, we fight.” The premise that Ukraine serves as a shield for Europe was openly criticized by Hungary, which has refused to send arms to Ukraine and has been pushing for a negotiated truce. Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto called Kiev’s claim “an exaggeration,” and said Budapest rejects any approach to the conflict based on this notion. “This is not our war,” he added.

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“Germany is being bossed by its Western partners because it lacks sovereignty, and its policymakers demonstrate poor leadership skills..”

World Laughing At Germany’s Leaders – Putin (RT)

Germany is being bossed by its Western partners because it lacks sovereignty, and its policymakers demonstrate poor leadership skills, Russian President Vladimir Putin stated at a meeting with young Russian scientists on Wednesday. Putin weighed on the EU’s push to wean itself off Russian energy following the escalation of the Ukraine conflict, arguing that by implementing the measure, Germany was only hurting itself. The president noted that either European countries are turning their backs on cheap energy on their own accord, or the decision-making is being “done by their allies from the United States due to political reasons.” In this sense, the EU’s energy security took a hit when Poland and Ukraine cut off Russian gas supplies through their territory and the Nord Stream pipelines were blown up, he added.

According to Putin, who had maintained close working relations with Berlin for most part of his political career, Kiev “receives money from Europe, from Germany… while the gas they need from Russia has been cut off.” “The Germans swallow all this because… they lack sovereignty. And some government leaders apparently lack sufficient professional skills to make adequate and professional decisions. Everyone knows who that is, they are being laughed at by the whole world.” Shortly after the Ukraine conflict escalated in February 2022, the EU unveiled a plan to wean itself off Russian energy “well before 2030.” In April 2022, Russian energy giant Gazprom announced that it would stop delivering gas via the Yamal-Europe pipeline, which runs through Poland, because the country had refused to pay for the energy using rubles due to sanctions against Moscow.

At the same time, Western restrictions launched as a response to the Ukraine conflict – including those on fossil fuel imports – were among the main culprits which led to last year’s energy crisis. The situation was exacerbated by the September 2022 bombing of the Nord Stream 1 and 2 gas pipelines, which connect Russia and Germany under the Baltic Sea. While several Western media outlets have suggested that the energy pipelines were blown up by Ukrainian-linked saboteurs, Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative journalist Seymour Hersh alleges that the attack was orchestrated by US intelligence agencies. Putin has agreed with Hersh’s conclusions, arguing that a sabotage of this magnitude would have been impossible to pull off without state support.

Lavrov

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“You can’t lead us or mislead us with statements..”

Ukraine Is Not Fighting For Europe – Hungary (RT)

Hungary rejects any approach to the Ukraine conflict that suggests that Kiev is somehow fighting to protect peace and democracy in Europe, Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto has said, adding that the conflict is only about Ukraine’s own territorial integrity. Speaking at a press conference following a meeting of foreign ministers of the NATO-Ukraine Council, Szijjarto called for an end to deliveries of lethal aid to Ukraine, warning that such assistance has the potential to spark an escalation of the conflict. He noted that while Hungary supports the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine, the ongoing conflict between Moscow and Kiev is “not Europe’s fight” and is not about peace and democracy in Europe.

“Ukraine is fighting for itself, for its own territorial integrity, its own sovereignty and its own independence, which we value very much, because it is a heroic fight, of course, but I say again, this is not our war, which is why we reject any approach that starts from this,” Szijjarto said. He added that NATO membership for Ukraine should be out of the question given the current circumstances. He noted that Kiev’s accession to the bloc is not even an option given that countries at war cannot be accepted. Such a move would put the alliance itself in danger and could potentially spark a world war, the minister said. The second reason, according to Szijjarto, is the fact that NATO is a “community of values,” which has no place for a state that “constantly suppresses the rights of national minorities.”

Budapest has repeatedly accused Kiev of suppressing the right of the nearly 150,000 ethnic Hungarians living in Ukraine to speak their own language by introducing laws requiring that Ukrainian be spoken in public life, school, the media, as well as in offices. Despite assurances from Kiev that a bill has already been drafted to address the issue, Szijjarto insisted that simple promises are meaningless and that Hungary only believes in fully adopted and implemented legislation. “You can’t lead us or mislead us with statements,” he said. Szijjarto’s statement comes after NATO promised on Wednesday that it will “develop a roadmap toward Ukraine’s full interoperability” with the bloc’s militaries but stopped short of offering any membership prospects for Kiev.

Russia, meanwhile, has repeatedly made it clear that Ukraine’s membership in NATO would be unacceptable to Moscow. President Vladimir Putin has also cited Kiev’s potential accession to the US-led bloc as one of the key reasons for the military operation against Kiev.

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“A money laundering investigator for a bank raised serious concerns in 2017 about a $5 million loan that the Biden family received from the arm of a Chinese energy firm..”

Bank Raised Red Flags About Biden Family’s $5m China Loan (JT)

A money laundering investigator for a bank raised serious concerns in 2017 about a $5 million loan that the Biden family received from the arm of a Chinese energy firm, flagging the transaction as “high risk” and possibly tied to efforts by the communist government to gain influence through Hunter Biden, according to an explosive new memo released by congressional investigators Wednesday. The unnamed investigator specifically raised concerns that the loan had no paperwork, that a Biden family firm distributed large sums of the money to a Hunter Biden law firm and that the recipient firm inside the Biden family did not appear to have any investments in need of a loan, the memo released by House Oversight Committee Chairman James Comer stated.Comer noted Wednesday that the complex $5 million trail of transactions also resulted in a $40,000 check landing in Joe Biden’s account.

The memo shows that the bank investigator identified Hunter Biden as a Politically Exposed Person (PEP), which is a widely used term in financial industry money laundering reviews to classify a person who is either “entrusted with a prominent public function” or a family member of one who is, according to The Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council. “We have been monitoring the subject customer due to the PEP designation and observations on the account activity as well as recent negative news indicate this entity to be high risk,” the money laundering investigator wrote bank officials as he traced the money from Northern International Capitol Holdings (HK) Limited, a firm tied to China CEFC Energy, through the Biden family’s Hudson West III firm and to Hunter Biden’s Owasco PC law firm.

“These payments were indicated as management fees and reimbursements. We find It unusual that approximately 58% of the funds were transferred to the law firm in a few months and the frequency of payments appear erratic,” the investigator’s memo noted. “It was also previously indicated Hudson West III LLC does not currently have any investment projects at this time, which raises further concerns as millions in fees are being paid but does not appear to have any services rendered by Owasco PC.” The memo also noted that the transmission of the $5 million loan from China has “no loan agreement document submitted” and that there was public news reports that Hunter Biden was in the midst of financial difficulties.

“There has been negative news regarding the beneficial owner of Owasco PC, Robert Hunter Biden (son of former U.S. Vice President-Joe Biden) regarding allegations by his ex-wife that there were financial concerns about his extravagant spending on his own Interests (drugs, strip clubs, prostitutes, etc,) which may put his family ln a deep financial hole,” the examiner wrote. “More recent negative news indicate China targeting children of politicians and purchase of political influence through ‘sweetheart deaIs,'” the examiner added.

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“Had Pfizer used the FDA’s preferred metric — absolute risk reduction — it would have instead informed the public that “the vaccine was merely 0.85% effective..”

Texas Sues Pfizer For “Misrepresenting COVID-19 Vaccine Efficacy” (ZH)

The Texas attorney general is suing pharmaceutical giant Pfizer for misrepresenting the effectiveness of the company’s Covid-19 “vaccine” and for conspiring to censor those who questioned its claims. The suit, filed Thursday, alleges that Pfizer violated the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act by engaging in false, deceptive and misleading acts as it promoted the drug.“The facts are clear. Pfizer did not tell the truth about their COVID-19 vaccines,” said Attorney General Kenneth Paxton in a statement revealing the suit. “We are pursuing justice for the people of Texas, many of whom were coerced by tyrannical vaccine mandates to take a defective product sold by lies.” The suit comes about eight months after Paxton announced an investigation of Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson for potential misrepresentations about Covid-19 vaccine efficacy and “potential manipulation of vaccine trial data.”

He has accused the company of “unlawfully misrepresenting the effectiveness of the company’s COVID-19 vaccine and attempting to censor public discussion of the product,” according to a press release. “Pfizer engaged in false, deceptive, and misleading acts and practices by making unsupported claims regarding the company’s COVID-19 vaccine in violation of the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act,” the release continues Much of Paxton’s 54-page-complaint focuses on Pfizer’s December 20, 2020 claim that its vaccine was “95% effective.” However, according to the complaint, “more Americans died in 2021, with Pfizer’s vaccine available, than in 2020, the first year of the pandemic.” He also cites government reports concluding that in some places, deaths among vaccinated people outpaced those among the unvaccinated, even on a percentage basis.

Pfizer’s claim of 95% efficacy rested on deceptive framing of clinical trial observations, says the complaint: That number was only ever legitimate in a solitary, highly- technical, and artificial way—it represented a calculation of the so-called “relative risk reduction” for vaccinated individuals in Pfizer’s then-unfinished pivotal clinical trial. But FDA publications indicate “relative risk reduction” is a misleading statistic that “unduly influence[s]” consumer choice. Indeed, per FDA: “when information is presented in a relative risk format, the risk reduction seems large and treatments are viewed more favorably than when the same information is presented” using more accurate metrics. The critical 95% claim came at a point when Pfizer only had an average of two months data on participants, says Paxton.

Specifically, the Texas AG says that of the 17,000 who received a placebo, only 162 contracted the illness, which makes for a poor baseline from which to judge the efficacy of the so-called vaccine. Had Pfizer used the FDA’s preferred metric — absolute risk reduction — it would have instead informed the public that “the vaccine was merely 0.85% effective,” writes Paxton. “Moreover, according to Pfizer’s own data, preventing one COVID-19 case required vaccinating 119.”

NZL 30% death rate

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How to spell banana republic.

Trump Gag Order Reinstated By NY Appeals Court (ZH)

Color us less than surprised; but a New York appeals court reinstated Thursday the gag order imposed on former President Donald Trump by the judge overseeing his civil fraud trial. The gag order was initially imposed by Judge Engeron on Oct. 3 (after President Trump accused the judge’s top clerk of political bias in a post on social media). An appeals court judge temporarily paused the gag order on Nov. 16 while the former president appealed the order. But now, in an order issued on Nov. 30, a four-judge panel of the Supreme Court of the State of New York, Appellate Division, overturned the temporary suspension of the gag order:

“Now, upon reading and filing the papers with respect to the motion, and due deliberation having been had thereon…it is ordered that the motion is denied; the interim relief granted by order of a Justice of this Court, dated November 16, 2023, is hereby vacated,” the appeals court’s order states. Trump’s legal team filed a mistrial motion earlier this month purporting that Engoron and his clerk have “tainted” the trial with their bias against Trump. Engoron denied the motion, calling it “utterly without merit.” President Trump has not publicly commented on the latest development. Trump also faces a gag order in his federal 2020 election subversion case. That order is currently on pause as a panel of federal judges weighs its merit.

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“All of the videotapes of all depositions are gone..”

“House Republicans have no records of who the witnesses were, what they said, or why it is being used by the federal prosecutor in their case against Trump..”

House Panel Chairman Says J6 Videotapes Of Witness Interviews Missing (JTN)

Videotapes of witness interviews that the Democrat-led Jan. 6 congressional committee conducted have vanished, raising concerns for the chairman of the successor House panel that is now examining security failures related to the Capitol riot as well as possible implications for upcoming criminal trials. “All of the videotapes of all depositions are gone,” Rep. Barry Loudermilk, R-Ga., chairman of the House Administration oversight subcommittee, told the “Just the News, No Noise” television show Thursday night. Loudermilk said he believes under the House rules the videotapes qualified as congressional evidence because some clips were aired at hearings, and all the tapes should have been preserved by the now-defunct J6 committee and its chairman, Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss.

“We found out about this early in the investigation when I received a call from someone who was looking for some information off one of the videotapes, and we started searching, and we had none,” Loudermilk explained. “I wrote a letter to Bennie Thompson asking for them. And he confirmed that they did not preserve those types. He didn’t feel that they had to. “But according to House rules, you have to preserve any data and information and documents that are used in an official proceeding, which they did, They (J6 Democrats) actually aired portions of these tapes on their televised hearings, which means they had to keep those. But yet he chose not to, I believe they exist somewhere. We’ve just got to find where all these videos are.” The revelation also could have implications for criminal trials being conducted in state court in Georgia and federal court in Washington where former President Donald Trump and allies are charged with crimes related to the Jan. 6, 2021 events.

Trump’s legal team recently was turned down by a judge when he requested certain evidence from the Jan. 6 committee.Loudermilk also revealed another tantalizing twist in the J6 committee evidence: the Democrat-led House committee sent certain evidence such as transcripts to the Biden White House and Homeland Security Department and now the transcripts have been returned to Loudermilk’s GOP-led subcommittee nearly fully redacted so their contents can’t be read. House Republicans have no records of who the witnesses were, what they said, or why it is being used by the federal prosecutor in their case against Trump, Loudermilk said. The documents “belong to the House. They should have never been sent. And second of all, do not send them back to me this heavily redacted. Those are our documents,” the chairman said. “But my question is, why was it okay for a Democrat-run House of Representatives to have unredacted documents but not when there’s a Republican committee that’s looking into this. What is it that the committee and or the White House is trying to hide?”

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Zero Hadge knows what this is like. So does the Automatic Earth: “..precisely what ad demonetization is: a not so subtle way of pushing content and editorial direction in exchange for a monthly stipend..”

Time To Boycott Elon’s Boycotters (ZH)

It was about four years ago that ZeroHedge went through ad monetization hell, having lost most of our advertisers because they did not approve of the content on this website and as a result they – together with such members of the Censorship Industrial Complex such as Newsguard, Sleeping Giants and CheckMyAds and various three letter US government agencies – did everything in their power to kill the site by starving it of ad revenue (it’s what prompted us to launch a premium, subscription-supported version without which we would not have survived, and therefore we wish to personally thank all of our premium subscribers). Fast forward to today, when Elon Musk is going through the same hell, as a growing group of companies are trying to do to X/Twitter what they tried to do to us by targeting the social media network and trying to starve it of ad revenue (their stated trigger of responding to the Media Matters fake news “report” was just a red herring: if it hadn’t been for Media Matters, they would have found some other point of “virtue” to rally around, and pull their ads).

Of course, there is one key difference: Elon is the world’s richest man, and if Twitter does not generate even one additional dollar of revenue, Elon will still be a multi-billionaire, and X can continue to operate for a long, long time if not in perpetuity (if costs are trimmed enough). It’s also why Elon yesterday had some choice words for those advertisers who had halted advertising, telling them “go fuck yourself” (with a shout out to Disney chief Bob Iger) if they think they can blackmail Musk… which is precisely what ad demonetization is: a not so subtle way of pushing content and editorial direction in exchange for a monthly stipend. Here, a brief tangent: for the most part, advertising spending is rarely about actual “advertising” and instead it is about endorsing, encouraging and funding certain ideologies and party lines which corporations agree with, encourage and seek to make default. It is about influencing the content decisions and editorial slant by implicitly threatening that the ad money can disappear at a moment’s notice if something is published the company disagrees with.

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Oscar Wilde, who died #otd in 1900, pictured in Athens in 1877.

 

 

Bear dog

 

 

Web developer

 

 

Shane

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

Nov 242023
 
 November 24, 2023  Posted by at 9:00 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,  35 Responses »


Jean-Michel Basquiat Self Portrait 1982

 

Hamas is Winning the Battle for Gaza (Scott Ritter)
Gaza: A Pause Before The Storm (Pepe Escobar)
IDF Knew Real Hamas HQ While Lying About al-Shifa (CN)
1,000 Boats To Leave Türkiye For Gaza In New ‘Freedom Flotilla’ (Palinfo)
How Zionists Rewrote the History of The Second World War (McCrae)
How the Democratic Party Faked an American Insurrection (Robert Bridge)
Zelensky Weighing Trump Peace Plan: ‘Time to Wrap This Conflict Up’ ? (Sp.)
2004, 2014, 2022: What Is Ukraine Celebrating? (Oncan)
Dems Fear Ukraine Might Not ‘Survive’ Until 2024 as House Halts Funding (Sp.)
Ukraine Has No One Left to Fight Because of Desertion (Sp.)
Pfizer Sues Poland Over Covid-19 Vaccine (RT)
Eurozone Economy ‘Stuck In The Mud’ – Economist (RT)
Germany to Choose Lifeline for Its Embattled Economy Over Ukraine Aid (Sp.)
Stark Warning Against UK Following Sweden By Going Cashless (Exp.)
European Lawmakers Vote For Abolition Of Member State Vetoes (RMX)
OpenAI Researchers Warned Board of AI Breakthrough Ahead of CEO Ouster (R.)

 

 

 

 

Nap/Macgregor

 

 


Dr. Areilla Oppenheim from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, did the first extensive DNA study in 2001 on Israelis and Palestinians, and concluded that emigrants on ships to Palestine before it became Israel were 40% Mongolian and 40% Turkish. There was no Semitic blood…

 

 

Ray McGovern: They Killed JFK, Will We Let Them Kill Peace?

 

 

Nap/Wilkerson

 

 

 

 

Macgregor

 

 

Nap Celente

 

 

Joe Lauria: “Is it any coincidence that a 4-day ceasefire allowing cameras to show food trucks delivering aid to Gazans coincides with the 4-day Thanksgiving holiday, when Americans often debate politics and won’t be confronted with images of genocide and deprivation as they overeat? The killing will resume when they go back to work on Monday.”

 

 

Actress Melissa Barrera is fired from the next Scream film sequel for daring to speak for the persecuted #Palestinians – “I’d rather be excluded for who I include, than be included for who I exclude.”

 

 

If you think the pope is pro-Palestinian, wait until you meet Jesus.

 

 

 

 

“..Hamas baited a trap for Israel which the government of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu predictably rushed into.”

Hamas is Winning the Battle for Gaza (Scott Ritter)

When Hamas launched its October 7 attack on Israel, it initiated a plan years in the making. The meticulous attention to detail that was evident in the Hamas operation underscored the reality that Hamas had been studying the Israeli intelligence and military forces arrayed against it, uncovering weaknesses that were subsequently exploited. The Hamas action represented more than sound tactical and operational planning and execution—it was a masterpiece in strategic conceptualization as well. One of the main reasons behind the Israeli defeat on October 7 was the fact that the Israeli government was convinced that Hamas would never attack, regardless of what the intelligence analysts charged with watching Hamas activity in Gaza were saying. This failure of imagination came about by Hamas having identified the political goals and objectives of Israel (the nullification of Hamas as a resistance organization by undertaking a policy built on “buying” Hamas through an expanded program of work permits issued by Israel for Palestinians living in Gaza.)

By playing along with the work permit program, Hamas lulled the Israeli leadership into complacency, allowing Hamas’ preparations for their attack to be carried out in plain view. The October 7 attack by Hamas was not a stand-alone operation, but rather part of a strategic plan possessing three main objectives—to put the issue of a Palestinian state back on the front burner of international discourse, to free the thousands of Palestinian prisoners held by Israel, and to compel Israel to cease and desist when it came to its desecration of the Al Aqsa Mosque, Islam’s third holiest place. The October 7 attack, on its own, could not achieve these outcomes. Rather, the October 7 attack was designed to trigger an Israeli response which would create the conditions necessary for Hamas’ objectives to reach fruition. The October 7 attack was designed to humiliate Israel to the point of irrationality, to ensure that any Israeli response would be governed by the emotional need for revenge, as opposed to a rational response designed to nullify the Hamas objectives.

Here, Hamas was guided by the established Israeli doctrine of collective punishment (known as the Dahiya Doctrine, named after the West Beirut suburb that was heavily bombed by Israel in 2006 as a way of punishing the Lebanese people for Israel’s failure to defeat Hezbollah in combat.) By inflicting a humiliating defeat on Israel which shattered both the myth of Israeli invincibility (regarding the Israel Defense Forces) and infallibility (regarding Israeli intelligence), and by taking hundreds of Israelis hostage before withdrawing to its underground lair beneath Gaza, Hamas baited a trap for Israel which the government of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu predictably rushed into.

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“South Africans do know a thing or two about apartheid. They, like other critics of Israel, better be extra wary moving forward.”

Gaza: A Pause Before The Storm (Pepe Escobar)

While the world cries “Israeli genocide,” the Biden White House is gushing over the upcoming Gaza truce it helped broker, as though it’s actually “on the verge” of its “biggest diplomatic victory.” Behind the self-congratulatory narratives, the US administration is not remotely “wary about Netanyahu’s endgame,” it fully endorses it – genocide included – as agreed at the White House less than three weeks before Al-Aqsa Flood, in a 20 September meeting between Israeli President Benjamin Netanyahu and Joe “The Mummy” Biden’s handlers. The US/Qatar-brokered “truce,” which is supposed to go into effect this week, is not a ceasefire. It is a PR move to soften Israel’s genocide and boost its morale by securing the release of a few dozen captives. Moreover, the record shows that Israel never respects ceasefires.

Predictably, what really worries the US administration is the “unintended consequence” of the truce, which will “allow journalists broader access to Gaza and the opportunity to further illuminate the devastation there and turn public opinion on Israel.” Real journalists have been working in Gaza 24/7 since October 7 – dozens of whom have been killed by the Israeli military machine in what Reporters Sans Frontieres calls “one of the deadliest tolls in a century.” These journalists have spared no effort to go all the way to “illuminate the devastation,” a euphemism for the ongoing genocide, shown in all its gruesome detail for the entire world to see. Even the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine (UNRWA), itself relentlessly attacked by Israel, revealed – somewhat meekly – that this has been “the largest displacement since 1948,” an “exodus” of the Palestinian population, with the younger generation “forced to live through traumas of ancestors or parents.”

As for public opinion all across the Global South/Global Majority, it “turned” long ago on Zionist extremism. But now the Global Minority – populations of the collective west – are watching raptly, horrified, and bitter that in just six weeks, social media has exposed them to what mainstream media hid for decades. There will be no turning back now that this penny has dropped. The South African government has paved the path, globally, for the proper reaction to an unfolding genocide: parliament voted to shutter the Israeli embassy, expel the Israeli ambassador, and cut diplomatic ties with Tel Aviv. South Africans do know a thing or two about apartheid. They, like other critics of Israel, better be extra wary moving forward.

Anything can be expected: an outbreak of foreign intel-conducted “terra terra terra” false flags, artificially induced weather calamities, fake “human rights abuse” charges, the collapse of the national currency, the rand, instances of lawfare, assorted Atlanticist apoplexy, sabotage of energy infrastructure. And more. Several nations should have by now invoked the Genocide Convention – given that Israeli politicians and officials have been bragging, on the record, about razing Gaza and besieging, starving, killing, and mass-transferring its Palestinian population. No geopolitical actor has dared thus far. South Africa, for its part, had the courage to go where few Muslim and Arab states have ventured. As matters stand, when it comes to much of the Arab world – particularly the US client states – they are still in Rhetorical Swamp territory.

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They simply want all hospitals gone, make the strip unlivable.

IDF Knew Real Hamas HQ While Lying About al-Shifa (CN)

Although corporate news media have made it clear they don’t buy the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) claim that al-Shifa Hospital has been a cover for a Hamas command and control center and weapons armory, Western media have failed to report a much bigger story. The IDF and the Israeli government already knew when they launched their propaganda campaign about al-Shifa that Hamas had no military command and control facility hidden there because it had already found the complex kilometers away. As Consortium News reported last week, for 15 years the Israelis claimed Hamas was operating its primary command and control base from a tunnel underneath al-Shifa. After the Israeli bombing campaign against Gaza began in October, the Israeli military amplified that message to press its contention that by hiding the Hamas high command, al-Shifa Hospital had lost its immunity from military operations under the law of war, and could now legitimately be taken over by force.

On Nov. 11, IDF spokesman Richard Hecht declared that al-Shifa was the “main hub of Hamas activity;” Newsweek reported the IDF regarded al-Shifa Hospital as “Hamas’s main command post” and the Times of Israel headlined “Hamas leaders again hiding under hospital”. The crescendo of Israeli propaganda about al-Shifa being a “human shield” for Hamas came with a long report published by The New York Times on Nov. 14. It was based on interviews with eight present and former intelligence and defense officials, describing a vast military command complex under al-Shifa with multiple levels. But something quite unexpected had happened during this new round of press stories on al-Shifa that completely demolished the entire IDF story line: the IDF had gained control of the real Hamas command and control center in an area where the Hamas leadership had previously had their above-ground offices in the Al Atatra neighborhood, in the extreme northwest of Beit Lahiya city, 8.5km away from al-Shifa.

After that office building was demolished, the IDF discovered a major tunnel facility that was quite certain had been the central headquarters for the Hamas high command — the command and control center for the entire war. As the IDF leaked to The Jerusalem Post in a story published Nov. 14, the discovery was made “several days ago” of a tunnel with an elevator that reached thirty meters underground, compared with only five meters underground in other tunnels. Furthermore it had been equipped with oxygen, air conditioning and more advanced communications than seen anywhere else. That major IDF discovery, made on or before the Nov. 11 false stories about al-Shifa, threatened to undermine the Israeli political campaign to justify the IDF’s takeover and destruction of Gaza’s hospitals on the grounds that they were “human shields” for Hamas.

Al-Shifa Hospital was the centerpiece of that campaign, based on the claim that it was hiding the high command of Hamas in a tunnel underneath it. Obviously the IDF and the extreme right-wing Israel government would want to stop all further publicity about the discovery of the actual Hamas high command’s underground base. No story about the discovery of the real Hamas high command bunker has been published inside Israel or elsewhere in the nearly two weeks since the detailed Jerusalem Post piece on Nov. 14. Somehow the Israeli government and media have been able to completely suppress the discovery of the Hamas headquarters, despite the fact that a number of foreign news media have offices in Tel Aviv and the story is still available on the internet.

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“..the boats will carry 4,500 people from 40 countries, “including anti-Zionist Jews.”

1,000 Boats To Leave Türkiye For Gaza In New ‘Freedom Flotilla’ (Palinfo)

Approximately 1,000 boats have gathered in Türkiye on Wednesday before heading toward Gaza in an attempt to break the Israeli blockade in a similar attempt from over a decade ago. In an interview with Turkish news website Haber7, Volkan Okçu, one of the organizers of the protest, indicated the boats will carry 4,500 people from 40 countries, “including anti-Zionist Jews.” Among the 1,000 vessels would be 313 boats filled with Russian activists, and 104 filled with Spanish activists, he said. Only 12 Turkish vessels will join the flotilla, he told Haber7. However, Okçu said in a later tweet that he expected the number of Turkish vessels to be much higher.

The activist indicated to Haber7 that the flotilla is scheduled to leave Turkish coasts on Thursday. The maritime convoy is set to make a first stop in Cyprus before continuing toward the Israeli port of Ashdod. Some participants in the flotilla will also reportedly take their spouses and children on board.

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“Hitler sought to radicalise Muslims for jihad against the British and French colonial powers, as had the Kaiser in the First World War.”

How Zionists Rewrote the History of The Second World War (McCrae)

The truth about the relationship between the Third Reich and the Jews is more complicated than the induced horror of a trip to Auschwitz. Robert Oulds, in his masterpiece, World War II: the First Culture War (2023), describes what happened in Palestine, a less-known yet dramatic theatre of the Second World War. In the 1930s Hitler had supported a Jewish homeland, as was already emerging since the Balfour Declaration of 1917. But the Holy Land around Jerusalem was keenly contested. The British had suppressed the Arab Revolt of 1936 to 1939, but Palestine and the wider Middle East were volatile.. Hitler sought to radicalise Muslims for jihad against the British and French colonial powers, as had the Kaiser in the First World War. As Oulds explains: ‘Hitler planned to use Crete as a steppingstone to reach Cyprus and from there take Palestine from the British and Zionists who were in the process of colonising the Mandate.’

The Zionist paramilitary organisation, the Stern Gang, sought cooperation with the Nazis, to liberate Palestine from British control, but their overtures were coolly received. Hitler favoured the Arab nationalists. Meanwhile, twelve thousand Palestinians, mostly but not exclusively Christian, had volunteered to serve in the British army. According to Oulds, ‘the Nazis admired Islam because its adherents were prepared to sacrifice their lives for their cause. Furthermore, as the Nazis were opponents of Judeo-Christian heritage, they thought that Islam could be a useful tool in undermining the traditions which the National Socialists despised.’ Ironically, this was similar to the aim of the Frankfurt School, whose Cultural Marxist professors were predominantly of the Jewish intelligentsia targeted by Hitler.

Muslims, particularly from the Caucasus, Bosnia and the Crimean Tatars, were recruited to the Waffen SS. The Grand Mufti of Jerusalem helped the Germans in this regard. However, Hitler’s Middle-Eastern endeavour was unsuccessful. Zionists showed little gratitude to the British for the initiation of the Jewish state. The Stern Gang killed about two hundred servicemen, many of whom had fought bravely in the North African desert against Rommel’s army. In 1946, ninety-one people died in the bombing of the King David Hotel in Jerusalem, site of the British administrative headquarters. Twenty-eight lives were lost, including five British soldiers, in an attack on the El Kantara to Haifa express train in 1947. Other violent campaigns of terror and ethnic cleansing were waged by other Jewish terrorist organisations, including the Haganah, Irgun, and Lehi.

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“And just like that the J6 Committee’s violent insurrection narrative has crumbled..”

How the Democratic Party Faked an American Insurrection (Robert Bridge)

“Truth and transparency are critical,” Johnson said in a prepared statement. “This decision will provide millions of Americans, criminal defendants, public interest organizations, and the media an ability to see for themselves what happened that day, rather than having to rely upon the interpretation of a small group of government officials.” Democrats, however, who have milked the ‘insurrectionist’ narrative for everything it is worth, predictably chafed at the release, calling it a ‘risk to national security.’ “It is unconscionable that one of Speaker Johnson’s first official acts as steward of the institution is to endanger his colleagues, staff, visitors, and our country by allowing virtually unfettered access to sensitive Capitol security footage,” said New York Democrat Rep. Joseph Morelle, who sits on the Committee on House Administration. “That he is doing so over the strenuous objections of the security professionals within the Capitol Police is outrageous. This is not transparency; this is dangerous and irresponsible.”

For almost two years, Democrats, who managed to cherry-pick the most suggestive scenes of the footage, portrayed January 6th as everything from another September 11 to a second Pear Harbor. Last year, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (AOC), the photogenic member of the Democrat’s radical progressive wing, was shown visibly upset after having to “relive” the events of the Capitol riot. “I am so angry. Having to relive that footage,” she sobbed, rubbing her forehead. “I know it’s not just me. This is everyone.” “These attacks killed people, traumatized people and for any of you right-winger Trump loyalists, he sent his own people to jail, and promised his own people that he would pardon them.” The inconvenient truth, however, is that only one person was killed on the day of the Capitol riot – unarmed Air Force veteran and avid Trump supporter, Ashli Babbitt, who was shot by a police officer.

Now, Republicans are demanding justice be served and that the incarcerated protesters be immediately set free. “And just like that the J6 Committee’s violent insurrection narrative has crumbled,” said conservative commentator Charlie Kirk over X (formerly Twitter). “The Capitol Police facilitated the protesters passage through the building…the vast majority of J6ers should be immediately released.” However, with the Democrats still in control of Washington, D.C., together with the FBI, the Justice Department and other administrative offices, the Republicans will have to wait until November 4th – and possibly longer if they lose their White House bid – before any real justice is meted out. Meanwhile, federal officials have said there is no evidence that law enforcement officials helped coordinate the attacks.

“If you are asking whether the violence at the Capitol on January 6 was part of some operation orchestrated by FBI sources or agents the answer is emphatically no,” FBI Director Christopher Wray told Rep. Clay Higgins (R-La.) during a House Committee hearing. Higgins was questioning Wray about two Greyhound buses he said dropped off FBI agents dressed as Trump supporters at the Capitol on January 6, referring to the vehicles as “ghost buses.” Whatever the case may be, the fresh revelations were a silver lining in a shitstorm that has been following Donald Trump, who hopes to win back the White House next November despite multiple legal woes. “Congratulations to Speaker of the House Mike Johnson for having the Courage and Fortitude to release all of the J6 Tapes, which will explicitly reveal what really happened on January 6th!” Trump wrote on Truth Social Friday.

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“Buying a ticket to the Trump Circus could really backfire for Zelensky..”

Zelensky Weighing Trump Peace Plan: ‘Time to Wrap This Conflict Up’ ? (Sp.)

In a recent interview with US media, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky signaled a belated interest in a peace proposal pitched earlier this year by former US President Donald Trump. In June, before a failed Ukrainian counteroffensive and a renewed Russian offensive, Zelensky had appeared incredulous at the suggestion of a negotiated settlement. In May, Trump claimed he “would have that war settled in one day, 24 hours” if he were president, saying he would sit down with both Zelensky and Russian President Vladimir Putin, both of whom “have their weaknesses.” The following month, as Ukraine was preparing to launch a highly anticipated counter-offensive, Zelensky told a US newspaper he “couldn’t understand” Trump’s statement, noting that in the four years Trump was in the White House, he didn’t secure the return of Crimea – by then part of the Russian Federation following its secession from Ukraine – or the Donbass – then governed by the autonomous People’s Republics that had not yet been recognized by Moscow – to Ukrainian control.

However, the Ukrainian counteroffensive fell flat on its face, failing to secure all but the most meager of territorial gains for Ukraine at an appalling human and materiel cost, and now Russian forces have launched their own operations aimed at pushing Ukrainian forces out of claimed Russian territories. Speaking with a US television news outlet on Tuesday, Zelensky said he was “ready” to hear Trump’s proposal. “Let’s speak with him and give him this possibility to show what steps [are] of his peace formula,” Zelensky said. “He can share it with me,” the Ukrainian leader said. “Yes, we can stop this war if we will give Russia Donbass and Crimea, to my mind that our country will not be ready for that such [a] peace plan. That is not [a] peace plan.” However, earlier this month, Zelensky told another US news outlet that he would only need “24 minutes” to explain to Trump “that he can’t manage this war … he can’t bring peace because of Putin.”

The US has already funneled more than $113 billion in aid to Kiev since Russia’s special operation began in February 2022, according to US government statistics, and Biden has called on Congress to approve a massive $61.4 billion aid bill. On Monday, US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin traveled to Kiev and declared the US would “continue to stand with Ukraine” and “will continue to support Ukraine’s urgent battlefield needs and long-term defense requirements.” Michael Shannon, a political commentator and Newsmax columnist, told Sputnik on Wednesday that Zelensky’s shift toward Trump was a risky intervention into US domestic politics that could seriously backfire. “It’s beginning to look like Zelensky’s blank check for US financial and military support has been returned for insufficient funds. The attitude on the part of the Biden administration and the left has been changing from ‘fighting to the last Ukrainian’ to ‘maybe it’s time to wrap this conflict up,’” Shannon told Sputnik.

“You can see evidence of this change in the coverage of the diplomatic portion of the conflict,” he noted. “The Regime Media is discussing negotiations without the previous preconditions. Zelensky can read the room and may be thinking that listening to Trump will signal an openness to alternative outcomes for the war.” However, Shannon also floated the opposite possibility: that Zelensky sees this maneuver as a ploy to provoke the White House into doubling down on support for Ukraine. “Or, it could be that Zelensky knows Trump is absolutely toxic to the Biden administration and he hopes that by meeting with Trump it will make a negotiated peace at this time anathema to the administration,” he explained. “Call it a ‘diplomatic bank shot’ if you will. A very risky bank shot. Zelensky would have been smarter to continue to ignore Trump.”

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Not much left to celebrate..

2004, 2014, 2022: What Is Ukraine Celebrating? (Oncan)

The catalyst for the Maidan coup, as it is now known, was the suspension of the association process with the EU by the Ukrainian government on November 21, 2013. Allegations of corruption further fueled pro-Western actions. A symbolic moment occurred on December 8 of the same year when the Lenin statue in Kiev was demolished, signaling a transformative shift for Ukraine. The activists leading the Maidan protests were primarily figures associated with Ukraine’s Western-backed ultra-nationalist and neo-Nazi movements. The Social-Nationalist Party, founded in 1991 and later renamed Svoboda (ironically meaning “Freedom”), played a significant role in the 2014 protests through its youth organization, Ukrainian Patriot.

Notably, neo-Nazi figure Andrey Biletskiy, founder of Trizub (established in 2002 and later transformed into the Azov Battalion), symbolizes the character of the Maidan regime, having been imprisoned for demolishing the Lenin statue in 2011 but subsequently released to enter parliament after the coup. Dmitry Yarosh, the founder of Praviy Sektor and a manager of Trizub, emerged as a leading figure in neo-Nazi organizations during and after the Maidan protests. Yarosh further gained influence as the chief advisor to the Chief of General Staff of Ukraine. The United States, a major international supporter of the Maidan protests, was notably represented by Victoria Nuland, who, as the Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs, distributed cookies to Ukrainian activists during the ongoing protests. Nuland’s involvement in shaping the post-coup administration, coupled with the claim that the USA spent $5 billion on Ukraine over two decades, highlighted the significant U.S. role.

The strong U.S. support for the Maidan coup also found expression in the appointment of Hunter Biden, the son of then-U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, to the board of directors of Burisma, Ukraine’s largest energy company. Following the coup, the ultra-nationalist government’s initial actions aimed to erase the Soviet past, suppress Russian cultural presence, and undertake moves against Russians in the country. The Ukrainian administration implemented measures such as banning the Russian language in public spaces, erecting statues of Nazi collaborators (particularly Bandera), designating their birthdays as public holidays, equalizing the status of Red Army veterans and members of Nazi collaborator organizations, official affiliation of neo-Nazi groups with the Ukrainian army, and the banning, persecution, and killing of members of the Communist Party and socialist organizations.

Russians, predominantly located in the east of the country, formed anti-fascist unions and engaged in Anti-Maidan actions to protect against attacks. This resistance led to the establishment of the Federal State of Novorossiya, comprising the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics. Despite the Minsk protocol signed by Ukraine, Russia, Donetsk, Lugansk, and OSCE representatives for a ceasefire, Ukrainian forces persisted in their attacks. A protracted war ensued, exacerbated by the special military operation launched by Russia.

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Make peace you fools.

Dems Fear Ukraine Might Not ‘Survive’ Until 2024 as House Halts Funding (Sp.)

The crisis in the Middle East, the possibility of a government shutdown, and the election of a new House speaker have shifted Washington’s attention away from Ukraine, with officials in the Pentagon and civilian agencies sending increasingly desperate warning signals that they’re running out of cash to sink into NATO’s proxy war against Russia. White House officials and Democratic lawmakers lobbying for the extension of US economic and military assistance to Ukraine have sounded the alarm over GOP House Speaker Mike Johnson’s perceived foot-dragging in setting up a vote on the issue. Citing recent attempts to include Ukraine funding into omnibus, must-pass funding measures, Democratic lawmakers pointed out that the next stopgap funding bill won’t be coming until late January or early February of 2024, and expressed fears about whether Kiev can hold out for that long.

“I don’t know that Ukraine can survive until February of 2024,” Democratic Senator Chris Murphy told Beltway media this week. “My sense is they start to run short of ammunition in the next several weeks.” “We have to bear down, get this done and get this supplemental passed soon because the brave Ukrainians who are fighting as winter is coming are looking at losing the supplies they’ve needed for ammunition, for missiles, for drones, for defense, for armor, and we cannot possibly afford to abandon Ukraine,” his colleague, Democratic Senator Chris Coons concurred. Johnson and his conservative Republican colleagues in the House of Representatives torpedoed President Joe Biden’s proposed $105 billion all-in-one funding bill this month containing money for Ukraine, Israel, cash for US brinksmanship with China in the Pacific, and the border crisis, instead pushing through a stopgap measure preventing a government shutdown and assuring funding for government services, but not a cent more.

The bill passed the Senate, and President Biden reluctantly signed it, despite earlier threats by the White House to veto the measure. For the Pentagon and US civilian agencies tasked with doling out cash to Kiev, Johnson’s reluctance to tee up a vote on Ukraine poses a real danger, with US military officials warning earlier this month that there was only about $1 billion remaining in the Ukraine war chest, and a USAID administrator revealing that its funds for direct budgetary support were all gone. “Without further appropriations, the government of Ukraine would need to use emergency measures such as printing money or not paying critical salaries, which could lead to hyperinflation, and severely damage the war effort,” USIAD assistant administrator Erin McKee said in congressional testimony earlier this month.

Senior White House aides informed media that part of the administration’s problem with Johnson is that it “does not yet have a clear read” on the politician’s negotiating style, and expressed concerns that the speaker may not be as malleable as his predecessor, Kevin McCarthy to backroom side deals (which helped culminate in McCarthy’s ouster).

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“Ukrainian prisons are currently holding at least a few brigades of deserters. Their motive is clear: fear of death..”

Ukraine Has No One Left to Fight Because of Desertion (Sp.)

The botched counteroffensive has caused the Kiev regime a serious shortage of human resources for mobilization, not to mention growing questions from Kiev’s Western allies and donors as to what they are actually providing money and weapons for. In 2021, the Prosecutor General’s Office of Ukraine initiated 117 criminal cases for desertion. Another 2,028 cases were classified as “unauthorized leaving of a military unit or place of service,” meaning that individuals left their units with the intention of returning. In addition, there were 33 cases of self-inflicted injuries.In the first nine months of this year, 4,638 soldiers deserted from the Ukrainian Armed Forces, 10,940 temporarily left service, and there were 161 cases of self-harm. Deserters face sentences of five to eight years in prison. In some instances, these cases often end with a pretrial agreement and a suspended sentence.

Ukrainian prisons are currently holding at least a few brigades of deserters. Their motive is clear: fear of death. Local media reported that a Russian missile destroyed several dozen soldiers in their barracks. One survivor fled, taking his rifle with him. His friends say he surrendered as a PoW. Nevertheless, he was sentenced to eight years in prison. Another soldier left his position after it was shelled, but returned later. He was sent to a military psychiatrist. He did not fully recover, disappeared again, then was arrested and sentenced to 2.5 years in prison. Another deserter admitted in court that he feared for his life during the attack on Liman. According to him, the operation was poorly planned and lacked fire support. Sentence: five years. Some try to flee abroad. In July, a deserter was caught on the border with Romania. He was also sentenced to five years.

They are also sent to penal battalions. This is not widely publicized, but it happens. At the front, however, they only trust those who surrendered at the first opportunity, and now they are only assigned to construction work. Officers are punished for the desertion of subordinates. Therefore, if a soldier declares that he would rather go to jail than face bullets, he will be kept in the rear. However, fatigue from the fighting is mounting for everyone. Losses are enormous and finding replacements are problematic. Many combat units are 30-40 percent short of personnel. Almost everywhere, there are hidden desertions. Soldiers, sergeants, and officers feign illness and try to stay at headquarters and in rear units – anything to avoid the front lines. And then “psychologists” rush to help, complaining that many people live by the principle “see no evil, hear no evil,” so the state should intensify propaganda.

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Reminder: Von der Leyen “negotiated” with Bourla on WhatsApp (or a similar app) , because she was not required to save such talks.

Pfizer Sues Poland Over Covid-19 Vaccine (RT)

US pharmaceutical giant Pfizer has escalated its feud with Poland over excess Covid-19 vaccine doses that were ordered under a massive contract with the European Union, filing a lawsuit to demand payment for 60 million jabs that Warsaw didn’t need. The case was filed this week in Brussels, demanding 6 billion zloty ($1.5 billion) for the vaccines that Poland’s government declined after it stopped taking delivery of the jabs in April 2019. Warsaw was locked into buying its share of Covid-19 inoculations under a controversial contract that the European Commission signed with Pfizer in 2021 on behalf of EU nations. The bloc wound up ordering 1.1 billion doses under the contract, saddling EU states with a vaccine glut as the Covid-19 pandemic waned.

The EU prosecutor’s office announced an investigation of the procurement process amid allegations of corruption and secret backroom dealings. Polish officials questioned the role of European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen in making the deal. Von der Leyen admitted to privately communicating with Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla for weeks during the contract negotiations, but the European Commission said last year that her text exchanges with the executive could not be found. The first hearing in Pfizer’s lawsuit is scheduled to take place on December 6. The company offered earlier this year to give the EU more time to complete its minimum vaccine purchases under the binding contract, but it insisted that it eventually be paid for the full number of doses to which the bloc committed. Poland refused to sign on to a revised EU agreement with the drugmaker.

Polish Health Minister Katarzyna Sojka told broadcaster TVN24 on Wednesday that there is some hope of resolving the Pfizer lawsuit “in a positive way.” She noted that Warsaw is not alone in the issue, as other EU states will face similar lawsuits. Pfizer decided to go forward with the lawsuit “following a prolonged contract breach and a period of discussions in good faith between the parties,” a company spokesman told Politico. Millions of Poles refused to receive Covid-19 vaccines, and Warsaw halted deliveries of the jabs as an influx of Ukrainian refugees in early 2022 strained the government’s finances.

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“The situation is especially dire in the Eurozone’s two largest economies, Germany and France..”

Eurozone Economy ‘Stuck In The Mud’ – Economist (RT)

The lingering economic downturn in the Eurozone signals that the region may plunge into a recession by the end of the year, Bloomberg reported on Thursday, citing economists and private-sector activity surveys. According to S&P Global, the purchasing managers’ index (PMI) in the region continued to shrink in November, plunging to 47.1 points, the sixth consecutive monthly reading below 50 – the threshold separating contraction from growth. The same trend was seen in both manufacturing and services. “The Eurozone economy is stuck in the mud,” Hamburg Commercial Bank chief economist Cyrus de la Rubia told the news outlet. According to the expert, everything points to “a second consecutive quarter of shrinking GDP” after a 0.1% drop in gross domestic product in the previous quarter, which would constitute a technical recession.

The situation is especially dire in the Eurozone’s two largest economies, Germany and France, de la Rubia said, noting that both are “in the grip of considerable weakness.” While Germany’s contraction somewhat eased in November and private-sector activity shrank at a slower pace than in the previous month, the country remains “in recession territory” and its economy may return to growth no sooner than next year, the analyst predicted. The state of affairs in France, meanwhile, was even worse, with the country’s PMI little changed at 44.5. Both manufacturing and services are suffering from weak demand, while the surge in unused business capacity triggered the first decline in private-sector employment in three years. This put the country’s economy “in a kind of a dead-end,” according to another economist at Hamburg Commercial Bank, Norman Liebke. Inflation in both France and Germany remained far above target levels and is unlikely to decrease sufficiently enough to stop weighing on their economies in the short term, de la Rubia said.

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They didn’t choose, the Federal Constitutional Court made the choice for them.

Germany to Choose Lifeline for Its Embattled Economy Over Ukraine Aid (Sp.)

The German Finance Ministry has announced a freeze on almost all new spending approvals for 2023, permitting only current liabilities and exceptional new obligations, after a Federal Constitutional Court ruling questioned the legality of several hundred billion euros in special funds. Berlin is facing a tough choice between financial support for German businesses and continuing to waste money on the “failed project” that is NATO’s proxy war against Russia in Ukraine. As “Ukraine fatigue” percolating throughout the West increasingly pulls the rug from under Kiev’s hopes for continued financial and military assistance being funneled to it, another blow might have been dealt to Europe’s efforts to sustain aid for the regime, the WSJ noted.

German Finance Minister Christian Lindner announced a freeze on public spending for the rest of the year on Monday. Applicable to almost the entire budget for 2023, the decision was made due to “the need to review the overall budgetary situation for the federal budget,” as per a statement from the ministry. The move came in the wake of a bombshell ruling by the Federal Constitutional Court last week. The judicial ruling stated that the €60 billion (over $65 billion) earmarked for the pandemic response cannot be repurposed for other initiatives, like advancing green manufacturing practices or boosting solar energy production. The court said Berlin was bound by the country’s constitutionally enshrined fiscal rules that limit budget deficits to 0.35% of gross domestic product in normal times.

The implications of the move are such that Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s government is now facing a dilemma. The increasingly unpopular Scholz Cabinet had been counting on a flood of spending on “green-energy projects and technology,” along with multibillion-euro-worth subsidies to construct chip-making plants, the WSJ underscored. Now, Berlin will either have to go ahead with painful budget cuts or raise taxes, or even both. But most importantly, in the short term, Berlin will need to decide whether priority shall be given to boosting Europe’s collective defense, and directing more aid to the Kiev regime, or “cushioning the impact of surging energy prices and inflation on businesses and households,” the outlet said. Nevertheless, Berlin will continue supporting a €50 billion four-year Brussels budget package for Ukraine for next year, according to cited German sources conferring with the bloc’s officials on November 17.

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There are reasons why it’s been used for centuries. Don’t throw it away, because you will get a lot of disadvantages.”

Stark Warning Against UK Following Sweden By Going Cashless (Exp.)

Britain should not follow Sweden towards becoming a cashless society, the leader of a Scandinavian grassroots movement has warned. Björn Eriksson, a former president of international police organisation Interpol, set up his campaign group to fight against the ditching of notes and coins in Sweden. And in a warning to the UK against going cashless, he said: “My message would be keep the two systems side by side. “It’s true that it costs more to have a system of cash running parallel with a digital system, but look upon it as an insurance. “There are reasons why it’s been used for centuries. Don’t throw it away, because you will get a lot of disadvantages.” Mr Eriksson launched Kontantupproret – Cash Rebellion – in 2015 due to concerns that some people were being cut adrift by the decline of cash in Sweden.

He said: “It just happens that I tried to be more modern and suddenly I could see there is something curious with this. “Everybody seems to be happy, nobody’s talking about those left aside. And that was more or less the starting point.” He said those affected include pensioners, women fleeing abusive relationships, the disabled, refugees, voluntary organisations, small businesses and people living in the north of the country where internet coverage can be a problem. Just eight percent of people in Sweden used cash for their most recent payment, according to a 2022 survey by the country’s central bank, down from 39 percent in 2010. But Britain is not that far behind with figures from UK Finance showing 14 percent of transactions last year used notes and coins.

Banks are vanishing from high streets up and down the country with 5,753 branches shutting their doors since January 2015, figures from consumer group Which? show. And some shops, cafes, restaurants and other venues across the UK will now only accept plastic. In Sweden, many banks have stopped handling cash altogether and Mr Eriksson said it is increasingly difficult to pay with notes and coins in shops. He said: “If you take foods you still have the possibility but notice it’s very easy to pay with digital means, maybe you have five places where you can do it in a shop, while if you have cash it’s a long line and you have to wait and then you can use your cash. “If you want to have a cup of coffee in Stockholm and you walk from the Parliament to the Central Station, for example, there is nowhere you could get your cup of coffee because they have a little sign saying we are cashless.”

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Are they trying to blow up the union?!

European Lawmakers Vote For Abolition Of Member State Vetoes (RMX)

European lawmakers approved plans on Wednesday to remove the national veto for EU member states in the latest attempted power grab by Brussels to wrestle control away from national governments. A total of 291 MEPs supported the proposal put forward by the “Verhofstadt Group,” a group of MEPs led by the arch-federalist Guy Verhofstadt to amend the European Union treaties in favor of greater centralization and limiting the sovereignty of member states. The vote was only narrowly passed with a majority of just 17 after a faction of conservative parliamentary groups expressed considerable opposition to the move.

In the plenary debate on the matter on Tuesday, Verhofstadt claimed that veto rights had been used by member states disillusioned with the European Union’s trajectory to “blackmail” the bloc, a thinly veiled jibe at Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, who has refused to sanction the European Union’s proposed amendments to the bloc’s collective budget to further finance the Ukrainian war effort. In response, a former co-rapporteur to the Verhofstadt Group, Polish MEP Jacek Saryusz-Wolski, accused federalists in the European Parliament of attempting “to transform the EU into a superstate,” continuing his opposition to the plans outlined in a recent interview with Remix News.

The public is not supposed to notice that a putsch is about to take place, that the European Union as a community of sovereign states is being abolished and a superstate is being created without any consent of the people, says Polish MEP Jacek Saryusz-Wolski Saryusz-Wolski resigned from the working committee led by Verhofstadt in protest at the development of the plan that would further politicize the European Commission, give Eurocrats sole competency over several issues including the environment, education, and public health, and remove the need for unanimity among member states in key policy areas. The Polish MEP called the move “a silent putsch with communist roots.”

Vice Chairman of the European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) group Rob Roos, contrasted the vote on Wednesday with the Dutch election being held on the same day, posting on X: “Today the festival of democracy takes place in the Netherlands, but in Strasbourg our democracy is being buried. “A European Parliament majority just voted for the abolition of the Netherlands’ veto in many areas. Vote for a party that defends our veto!” he added. The resolution in reality changes little. It gives an insight into the consensus of the parliament but treaty change ultimately remains a matter upon which unanimity among member state governments is required.

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“OpenAI defines AGI as autonomous systems that surpass humans in most economically valuable tasks..”

Better listen to Elon, and not let Bill Gates run away with it.

OpenAI Researchers Warned Board of AI Breakthrough Ahead of CEO Ouster (R.)

Ahead of OpenAI CEO Sam Altman’s four days in exile, several staff researchers wrote a letter to the board of directors warning of a powerful artificial intelligence discovery that they said could threaten humanity, two people familiar with the matter told Reuters. The previously unreported letter and AI algorithm were key developments before the board’s ouster of Altman, the poster child of generative AI, the two sources said. Prior to his triumphant return late Tuesday, more than 700 employees had threatened to quit and join backer Microsoft in solidarity with their fired leader. The sources cited the letter as one factor among a longer list of grievances by the board leading to Altman’s firing, among which were concerns over commercializing advances before understanding the consequences. [..]

After being contacted by Reuters, OpenAI, which declined to comment, acknowledged in an internal message to staffers a project called Q* and a letter to the board before the weekend’s events, one of the people said. An OpenAI spokesperson said that the message, sent by long-time executive Mira Murati, alerted staff to certain media stories without commenting on their accuracy. Some at OpenAI believe Q* (pronounced Q-Star) could be a breakthrough in the startup’s search for what’s known as artificial general intelligence (AGI), one of the people told Reuters. OpenAI defines AGI as autonomous systems that surpass humans in most economically valuable tasks. Given vast computing resources, the new model was able to solve certain mathematical problems, the person said on condition of anonymity because the individual was not authorized to speak on behalf of the company.

Though only performing math on the level of grade-school students, acing such tests made researchers very optimistic about Q*’s future success, the source said. Reuters could not independently verify the capabilities of Q* claimed by the researchers. Researchers consider math to be a frontier of generative AI development. Currently, generative AI is good at writing and language translation by statistically predicting the next word, and answers to the same question can vary widely. But conquering the ability to do math — where there is only one right answer — implies AI would have greater reasoning capabilities resembling human intelligence. This could be applied to novel scientific research, for instance, AI researchers believe.

Unlike a calculator that can solve a limited number of operations, AGI can generalize, learn and comprehend. In their letter to the board, researchers flagged AI’s prowess and potential danger, the sources said without specifying the exact safety concerns noted in the letter. There has long been discussion among computer scientists about the danger posed by highly intelligent machines, for instance if they might decide that the destruction of humanity was in their interest. Researchers have also flagged work by an “AI scientist” team, the existence of which multiple sources confirmed. The group, formed by combining earlier “Code Gen” and “Math Gen” teams, was exploring how to optimize existing AI models to improve their reasoning and eventually perform scientific work, one of the people said.

Altman led efforts to make ChatGPT one of the fastest growing software applications in history and drew investment – and computing resources – necessary from Microsoft to get closer to AGI. In addition to announcing a slew of new tools in a demonstration this month, Altman last week teased at a summit of world leaders in San Francisco that he believed major advances were in sight. “Four times now in the history of OpenAI, the most recent time was just in the last couple weeks, I’ve gotten to be in the room, when we sort of push the veil of ignorance back and the frontier of discovery forward, and getting to do that is the professional honor of a lifetime,” he said at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit. A day later, the board fired Altman.

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Sea angel
https://twitter.com/i/status/1727792704078168321

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Nov 222023
 
 November 22, 2023  Posted by at 9:21 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,  74 Responses »


Paul Cézanne Young Italian Woman at a Table c1900

 

Israel’s Cabinet Approves Ceasefire, Hostage Deal With Hamas (Sp.)
Gaza ‘Truce’ Won’t Halt The Regional War (Illaik)
Will the Scorpion Sting the US Frog? (Alastair Crooke)
Putin Calls For Joint Global Efforts To End Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (TASS)
Will Russia-China Patience Extinguish the Fire in West Asia? (Pepe Escobar)
Biden Op-ed Likening Russia to Hamas is Result of Dementia – Scott Ritter (Sp.)
Western Leaders Came to Ukraine to Test Kiev Regime Viability (Sp.)
US Mission To NATO Signals Zelensky Must Sit At “Negotiating Table” (ZH)
Rep. Goldman Denounced “Dangerous” Rhetoric Using Dangerous Rhetoric (Turley)
‘All In’ for Trump House Speaker Johnson Pays Visit to Mar-a-Lago (Sp.)
Trump Seeks To Halt Gag Order In Election Meddling Case (BBC)
We Must Demand Justice for the January 6th Protestors! (Ron Paul)
Texas AG Sues Pfizer Over Tainted Children’s Drugs (ZH)
Lawsuit Against Alleged CIA Spying On Assange Visitors (Gosztola)

 

 

 

 

Children of Gaza

 

 


“Interest on the federal debt is now so immense that it’s consuming 40% of all personal income taxes… If federal finances continue on their current path, we are only a few years from the entirety of income taxes being needed to finance the debt…”

 

 

Morning Joe


https://twitter.com/i/status/1726977947549213107

 

 

Nap Macgregor

 

 

Scott Ritter: “Israel been defeated on the battlefield! We will not SAVE THEM this time..”

 

 

Sachs UN

 

 

Martyanov

 

 

 

 


Truth Social files defamation suit vs 20 media companies

 

 

The head of the aid organization that runs the Indonesian Hospital in Gaza, now under sustained assault by Israeli forces, wrote a letter to Pres. Biden: “You have destroyed the international rules of the game, insulted the authority of the UN, torn apart the sense of justice, and hurt human values, and tarnished the face of human civilization.”

 

 

 

 

Nobody believes in Israel’s good intentions.

Israel’s Cabinet Approves Ceasefire, Hostage Deal With Hamas (Sp.)

The Israeli cabinet has accepted a deal with Palestinian movement Hamas for a temporary ceasefire and the release of hostages in a vote on Wednesday, Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported. The newspaper cited a senior Israeli official as saying that the deal would see Hamas release 30 children and eight mothers, as well as 12 more women, during a four-day ceasefire. The official also said that all the branches of the Israeli security services supported the deal, the newspaper reported. The deal includes only Israelis, but Hamas may release foreign nationals under deals with other countries, the report said. Implementing an agreement between Israel and Palestinian movement Hamas on the release of hostages will start a day after the deal is reached and the US anticipates the freeing of additional hostages, a senior Biden administration official said during a press briefing.

“Even if we get an agreement tonight or tomorrow morning, the implementation would not start until 24 hours after that,” the official said on Tuesday evening. “If we had an agreement tonight, the implementation would probably be Thursday morning Israel time.” Palestinian movement Hamas will release 50 of some 240 hostages being held in the Gaza Strip, women and children first, over a four-day ceasefire that was approved by Israel’s cabinet, the Associated Press reported Tuesday, citing the Israeli government. Israel would publish a list of names of prisoners to be released under a deal with Palestinian movement Hamas within the next 24 hours so that Israelis can appeal the release in court, Axios reported Tuesday, citing an Israeli official. The report added that Israel would extend the truce by an additional day for every ten hostages released.

Palestinian movement Hamas said in a statement on Wednesday that it has agreed with Israel on a four-day truce in the Gaza Strip with the cessation of all hostilities and the release of 50 Israeli hostages in return for 150 Palestinian prisoners. “Following difficult and complex negotiations that lasted for many days, we announce that … we, thanks to the persistent efforts of Qatar and Egypt, have reached an agreement on a humanitarian truce (temporary ceasefire) for four days, according to which a ceasefire on both sides comes, as well as the cessation of all military activities of the occupation army in all areas of the Gaza Strip, as well as the cessation of the movement of its military equipment into the Gaza Strip,” Hamas said on Telegram.

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“..In short, the ground battle in northern Gaza has only just begun, and is gearing up to get even hotter in the weeks ahead.”

Gaza ‘Truce’ Won’t Halt The Regional War (Illaik)

The Israeli military has announced the expansion of its ground operations in the northern Gaza Strip. After seizing territories on Gaza’s coastline, in the western part of the northern strip, Tel Aviv’s actual ground operation is now beginning. For more than three weeks of its ground offensive, the occupation army has been operating in areas close to the shoreline, in places where tunnels cannot be dug, and, therefore, areas where the Palestinian resistance does not have significant defensive capabilities. But now, the occupation army is moving eastward from the Gaza coast, allowing the armed resistance to maneuver far more easily and inflict greater losses on the invading soldiers and their armored vehicles – as has become quite evident in recent days. In short, the ground battle in northern Gaza has only just begun, and is gearing up to get even hotter in the weeks ahead.

In support of the resistance in Gaza, the Yemeni army and Ansarallah fighters seized an Israeli-owned vessel in the Red Sea on 19 November after threatening to target all Israeli ships crossing the Bab al-Mandab Strait. Over the past week, on Lebanon’s border with Israel, the Lebanese resistance Hezbollah has increased the frequency of its military operations. On 20 November, the occupation army monitored more than 40 attacks on its positions, one of which was carried out with four rockets, each with an explosive warhead weighing around 500 kilograms. The salvo destroyed the Israeli ‘Branit’ military barracks near the border with Lebanon. In just the past three days, Hezbollah has carried out an average of 12 military operations against Israeli targets each day. Simultaneously, Iraqi resistance attacks are continuing against US military bases in Iraq and Syria – over sixty operations to date.

The increased pace of clashes across West Asia is, however, being widely ignored by many of Tel Aviv’s western allies, whose attention has been diverted by ongoing prisoner exchange talks between Israel and the Palestinian resistance, mediated by Qatar and the US. These weeks-long negotiations are being treated as evidence that the next phase will necessarily be a de-escalation in Palestine. Those expectations have been fanned by a leak that Israel’s cabinet has discussed the imminent demobilization of a number of army reservists. While the Israeli military may indeed demobilize part of the reserve forces it called up after 7 October, this decision is not based on de-escalatory considerations. The more than 300,000 Israeli reservists initially mobilized was far too great for the capacity of the occupation army, which was unable to absorb these personnel into its fronts in Gaza, Lebanon, and the West Bank.

Despite this, many still optimistically cling to the de-escalation narrative. They are further encouraged by official US statements criticizing – albeit in a watered-down manner – Israel’s targeting of Palestinian civilians, and point to the occasional US-Israel divergences over what they call the “post-Hamas phase” in Gaza as further proof that Tel Aviv will have to scale down its war. But at the current stage of the conflict, these discrepancies and observations are considered totally irrelevant by officials in the region’s Axis of Resistance. They note instead that Washington continues to maintain its pace of arms support for Israel, as it has done since the war’s onset, while sticking to its refusal to entertain any permanent ceasefire.

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“..he manoeuvres to alleviate criticism and to stay in power as long as he can. More importantly, he hopes this will enable him to spread the blame, shedding all and any responsibility and accountability from himself..”

Will the Scorpion Sting the US Frog? (Alastair Crooke)

The allegory is one in which a scorpion depends on the frog for its passage across a flooded river, by hitching a lift on the frog’s back. The frog distrusts the scorpion; but reluctantly agrees. During the crossing the scorpion fatally stings the frog swimming the river, under the scorpion. They both die. It is a tale from antiquity intended to illustrate the nature of tragedy. A Greek tragedy is one in which the crisis at the heart of any ‘tragedy’ does not arise by sheer mischance. The Greek sense is that tragedy is where something happens because it has to happen; because of the nature of the participants; because the actors involved make it happen. And they have no choice but to make it happen, because that is their nature.

It is a story that was deployed by a former senior Israeli diplomat, well versed in U.S. politics. His telling of the frog fable has Israel’s leaders desperately fending off responsibility for the 7 October débacle, with a cabinet furiously trying to turn the crisis (psychologically) from culpable disaster – to present the Israeli public instead with an image of epic opportunity. The chimaera being presented is one that by reaching back to earliest Zionist ideology, Israel can turn the catastrophe in Gaza – as Finance Minister Smotrich has long argued – into a solution that once and for all ‘unilaterally resolves the inherent contradiction between Jewish and Palestinian aspirations – by ending the illusion that any kind of compromise, reconciliation or partition is possible. This is the potential scorpion sting: the Israeli cabinet betting all on a hugely risky strategy – a new Nakba – that could draw Israel into major conflict, but in so doing also sink what remains of western prestige.

Of course, as the former Israeli diplomat underlines, this ploy is essentially constructed around Netanyahu’s personal ambition – he manoeuvres to alleviate criticism and to stay in power as long as he can. More importantly, he hopes this will enable him to spread the blame, shedding all and any responsibility and accountability from himself. [Better still], “it can place Gaza in an historic and epic context as an event that might render the PM as a formative wartime leader of grandeur and glory”. Far-fetched? Not necessarily. Netanyahu may be writhing politically for survival, but he is a true ‘believer’ too. In his book, Going to the Wars, historian Max Hastings writes that Netanyahu told him in the 1970s that, “In the next war, if we do it right, we’ll have the chance to get all the Arabs out … We can clear the West Bank, sort out Jerusalem.” And what is the Israeli cabinet thinking about the ‘next war’? It thinks ‘Hizbullah. As one minister noted recently, ‘after Hamas, we will turn to deal with Hizbullah’.

It is precisely the confluence of a lengthy war in Gaza (along lines established in 2006), and an Israeli leadership seemingly intent to provoke Hizbullah on to, and up, the escalatory ladder, which is causing red lights to flash inside the White House, according to the former Israeli diplomat. In the 2006 war with Hizbullah, the entire urban populated suburb of Beirut – Dahiya – was levelled. General Eizenkot (who commanded Israeli forces during that war and is now a member in Netanyahu’s ‘War Cabinet’) said in 2008: “What happened in the Dahiya quarter of Beirut in 2006 will happen in every village from which Israel is fired on … From our standpoint, these are not civilian villages, they are military bases … This is not a recommendation. This is a plan. And it has been approved.”

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Putin first wants more countries to step up to the plate. He won’t be isolated.

Putin Calls For Joint Global Efforts To End Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (TASS)

The international community should join forces to find a political solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Russian President Vladimir Putin said. “Russia’s position is consistent and does not change with the situation. We urge the international community to join forces in order to ease tensions, ensure a ceasefire and find a political solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict,” he noted, addressing an extraordinary summit of the BRICS group (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa). According to Putin, “BRICS nations and the countries of the region could play a key role in this work.” “This is why the participation of our colleagues from the Middle East in today’s meeting, who were invited to join BRICS as full members earlier in the year, is particularly important,” the Russian leader noted.

“I would like to use this opportunity to respectfully commend their efforts to improve the situation, particularly by holding the Peace Summit in Egypt and the extraordinary Arab-Islamic Summit in Saudi Arabia,” Putin said. The Russian president highlighted the fact that “all BRICS countries share similar positions on the need to make joint efforts to find a long-term and sustainable solution to the prolonged Israeli-Palestinian issue.” In his view, “this became evident in the UN General Assembly’s vote on a draft resolution on a humanitarian ceasefire, as well as in discussions of a UN Security Council resolution on the Middle East settlement, which was adopted for the first time in seven years.” “Even though the resolution only calls for humanitarian pauses and not for a ceasefire, we see its adoption as a step in the right direction,” the Russian president pointed out. He stressed that “while a full ceasefire would be better, such humanitarian pauses are required for efforts to release hostages and evacuate civilians and foreign nationals from the Gaza Strip.”

The UN Security Council earlier passed a Malta-drafted humanitarian resolution aimed at assisting children in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict zone. The seven-point document particularly calls for long humanitarian pauses and the immediate release of all hostages, especially children. Putin also thanked his Egyptian counterpart Abdel Fattah El-Sisi for facilitating the evacuation of Russian nationals from Gaza. The Russian leader emphasized the need to achieve lasting peace in the Middle East and prevent the conflict from expanding. “By and large, ensuring a long-term and sustainable ceasefire is certainly the most pressing goal,” Putin noted. “It is important to stop other countries from being dragged into the war in the Middle East and prevent the conflict from expanding, as well as to preserve the fragile interfaith peace,” he added.

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“..that’s actually BRICS 10, because after the election of pro-Hegemon Zionist Javier “Chainsaw Massacre” Milei for President, Argentina is now out of the picture, and possibly discarded by January 1st, 2024..”

Will Russia-China Patience Extinguish the Fire in West Asia? (Pepe Escobar)

Everyone familiar with West Asia – from US generals to grocers in the Arab Street – knows that Israel is a landed aircraft carrier whose mission is to keep West Asia in check on behalf of the Hegemon. Of course in a dog eats dog geopolitical environment it’s easy to misunderstand all wag the dog shenanigans. What’s certain is that for hegemonic circles of the US Deep State, and certainly for the White House and the Pentagon, what matters in the current incandescent juncture is the uber-extreme/genocidal Likud-led Netanyahu government in Israel, not “Israel” per se. That projects Netanyahu as the exact mirror image of the beleaguered sweaty sweatshirt actor in Kiev. Quite the geopolitical gift – in terms of deflecting blame away from the Hegemon for a genocide deployed live on every smartphone on the planet.

And all that conducted under a veneer of legality – as in the White House and the State Department “advising” Tel Aviv to act with moderation; yes, you can bomb hospitals, schools, medical workers, journalists, thousands of women, thousands of children, but please be gentle. Meanwhile, the Hegemon has deployed an Armada to the Eastern Mediterranean, complete with two very expensive iron bathtubs, sorry aircraft carrier groups plus a nuclear submarine close to the Persian Gulf. That’s not exactly to survey guerrillas in underground tunnels and to “protect” Israel. The ultimate – neocon and Zio-con – targets are of course Hezbollah, Syria, Hashd al-Shaabi in Iraq and Iran: the whole Axis of Resistance.Iran-Russia-China, the new neocon-defined “axis of evil”, which happen to be the Top Three Actors of Eurasia integration, for all practical purposes have interpreted the genocide in Gaza as an Israeli-American operation. And they have clearly identified the key vector: energy.

The inestimable Michael Hudson has noted how “we’re really seeing something very much like the Crusades here. It’s a real fight for who is going to control energy, because, again, the key, if you can control the world’s flow of energy, you can do to the whole world what the United States did to Germany last year by blowing up the Nord Stream pipelines.” And that brings us to the fascinating case of the OIC/Arab World delegation of Foreign Ministers now on tour of selected capitals promoting their plan for a complete ceasefire in Gaza plus negotiations for an independent Palestinian state. The delegation, called the Gaza Contact Group, includes Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan, Turkey, Indonesia, Nigeria and Palestine.

Their first stop was Beijing, meeting Wang Yi, and the second stop Moscow, meeting Sergei Lavrov. That tells us all we need to know about BRICS 11 in action – even before the fact. Well, that’s actually BRICS 10, because after the election of pro-Hegemon Zionist Javier “Chainsaw Massacre” Milei for President, Argentina is now out of the picture, and possibly discarded by January 1st, 2024, when BRICS previously 11 starts under the Russian presidency. The OIC/Arab League special conference on Palestine in Saudi Arabia had yielded a meek final declaration that disappointed virtually the whole Global South/Global Majority. But then something started to move. Foreign Ministers started to coordinate closely. At first Egypt with China, after previous coordination with Iran and Turkey. That may sound counter-intuitive – but it’s all due to the gravity of the situation. That explains why the Iranian Foreign Minister is not part of the current traveling delegation – which is led, in practice, by Saudi Arabia and Egypt.

The meeting with Lavrov coincided with an extraordinary online BRICS meeting on Palestine, called by the current South African presidency. Crucial point: the flags of new members Iran, Egypt and Ethiopia could be identified behind the speakers. Iran’s President Raisi went no holds barred, calling for BRICS member states to use every political and economic tool available to pressure Israel. Xi Jinping called once again for a two-state solution and positioned China as the mediator of choice. For the first time Xi in his own words laid it all out: “There can be no security in the Middle East without a just solution to the question of Palestine. I have emphasized on many occasions that the only viable way to break the cycle of Palestinian-Israeli conflict lies in a two-state solution, in the restoration of the legitimate national rights of Palestine, and in the establishment of an independent state of Palestine.” And it should all start via an international conference.

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“The story is that Joe Biden, the president of the United States is lacking in such mental capacity that the presidency is being managed by people who weren’t elected to do that job. That’s what people should be worried about.”

Biden Op-ed Likening Russia to Hamas is Result of Dementia – Scott Ritter (Sp.)

US President Joe Biden lacks the mental ability to draw parallels between Russia and Hamas, says a former US Marine. The Washington Post ran an op-ed under Biden’s byline at the weekend, likening the Palestinian Islamic resistance movement Hamas’ breakout from the besieged Gaza Strip on October 7 to Russia’s military operation in Ukraine in defence of the Russian-speaking Donbass region — following eight years of Ukrainian shelling of civilians. Biden “didn’t write this” as he “doesn’t have the mental capacity,” Ritter told Sputnik. “I’m not picking on him, I’m just being honest,” he said. “This was written by his national security staff. It was edited by Jake Sullivan. I believe [US Secretary of State] Tony Blinken came in with a lot of stuff that this was a collaborative effort by the people who are managing Joe Biden.” “This is the story, not the content of the op-ed,” Ritter stressed. “The story is that Joe Biden, the president of the United States is lacking in such mental capacity that the presidency is being managed by people who weren’t elected to do that job. That’s what people should be worried about.”

But he said the words attributed to Biden no longer carry the same weight as comments by previous presidents, thanks to the proliferation of alternatives to the mainstream media. “So when Joe Biden or his managers publish an op-ed of this nature, it no longer has the same cachet, the same impact that it would have ten years ago,” Ritter argued. “Today, it’s immediately cancelled out as ridiculous as absurd.” Ritter wrote for Consortium News last week that Biden and Blinken were being disingenuous in their call for a two-state solution to the Israel-Palestine conflict, given that no Israeli leader in decades has been serious about implementing it. “Even if such a governing coalition could be crafted together to politically sustain the idea of a two-state solution that fails to resonate with Israelis and Palestinians alike, there remains the ultimate hurdle that needs to be cleared before any notion of a lasting peace between Israeli and Palestinian states premised on the notion of equality — Israel’s nuclear weapons program,” Ritter wrote.

The former weapons inspector said Israel’s nuclear program had been “shrouded in ambiguity from the moment it was born, back in the 1960s when they actually produced a weapon.” “The United States has been the principal reason why this has happened,” Ritter pointed out. “The Nixon administration was confronted with the fact that Israel had nuclear weapons. We knew it. And they were in violation of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty, because even if they didn’t sign the treaty, we signed the treaty. And the treaty only allows five declared nuclear powers. So we would have to sanction Israel.” He underscored the aggressive nature of Israel’s military doctrine known as the “Samson option” after the biblical hero who collapsed the temple of the Philistines, killing them and himself. That doctrine mandates first use of nuclear weapons against neighboring Middle Eastern states if Israel faces military defeat and a return to Palestinian majority rule.

“That’s Israel’s nuclear policy, that if Israel goes, everybody goes,” Ritter explained. “And we went along with it because we believed that we could secure Israel enough so they would never have to use this weapon.” But Biden’s ostensible resurrection of the two-state solution calls that doctrine into question, he said. “A Palestinian state implies that Israel has normalized relations with their Palestinian neighbors and by extension, their regional neighbors.Therefore, there could be no justification for the continuation of this policy,” Ritter said. “Moreover, Palestine could never be considered free and independent so long as it was living next door to a nuclear power, an undeclared nuclear power.”

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“European leaders want to understand whether they will have their say in the process of replacing Zelensky, or whether this political transformation in Kiev will be carried out, as usual, by two powers – London and Washington..”

Western Leaders Came to Ukraine to Test Kiev Regime Viability (Sp.)

European Council President Charles Michel arrived in the Ukrainian capital on Tuesday as well as Maia Sandu, president of Moldova. Separately, German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius took the train to Kiev to meet Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on an unannounced visit. US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin landed in Ukraine on Monday to unveil a new US military aid package worth $100 million for the Ukrainian military. Prior to that, new Foreign Secretary David Cameron made his first trip to the Eastern European country last week. “Firstly, we must not forget that today all ‘progressive’ humanity is celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Maidan,” Dmitry Evstafiev, political scientist and HSE University professor, told Sputnik with a touch of irony referring to the 2014 February coup in Kiev.

“Therefore, all the main European leaders, in Kiev, in fact, defend the policy that they began 10 years ago to finally turn Ukraine against Russia. This was a very important strategic choice. And this was, first of all, a European choice, not an American one. The Americans simply hijacked the processes that the Europeans launched, hijacked it successfully and effectively in such a way that today’s Europe, while still representing something geopolitically, no longer represents anything in terms of geoeconomics.” Secondly, it has become obvious that the Zelensky regime is becoming “catastrophically toxic” not only for the United States, but also for Europe, Evstafiev continued. “For the United States, the Zelensky regime has become toxic for quite a while, and it was a very difficult story for the Americans, which turned the issue of supporting, in fact, a radical nationalist, almost dictatorial at that time, and now an overtly dictatorial regime, into one of the most important topics of internal political struggle in the United States,” the professor remarked.

Per Evstafiev, Washington is no longer concealing the fact that it wants to turn a Ukraine conflict into a big European war using the desire of the Zelensky regime to somehow survive amid the deteriorating military situation and dwindling US support. The high-profile visits came at a time when the West has shifted focus on the Palestinian-Israeli standoff, which reportedly frustrated Zelensky. The Western mainstream press has also recently changed its coverage of the conflict from lauding Ukraine to admitting Kiev’s failure to proceed with its counteroffensive. Against this backdrop, European leaders are apparently trying to find out to what extent the Kiev regime is viable and whether it is worth continuing to support Volodymyr Zelensky, the expert said.

“And here there is a second layer to this issue: European leaders want to understand whether they will have their say in the process of replacing Zelensky, or whether this political transformation in Kiev will be carried out, as usual, by two powers – London and Washington. In this sense, of course, the outright incapacity of the German government and the virtual absence of political leadership in Germany becomes a huge problem for Europeans. Nevertheless, Europeans may try to seize on some opportunities in Kiev and try to defend their positions and their interests in the process of changing power in Kiev.”

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“U.S. and European officials have begun quietly talking to the Ukrainian government about what possible peace negotiations with Russia might entail to end the war..”

US Mission To NATO Signals Zelensky Must Sit At “Negotiating Table” (ZH)

The official X account of the US Mission to NATO wrote Monday, “In this tough and dynamic battle, Ukraine’s soldiers are fighting bravely every single day, and they continue to inspire the world with their bravery and courage.” “We will continue to support them to be in the strongest possible position at the negotiating table when the time comes,” the statement said. This marks a drastic shift in public messaging. Up to a short while ago, the Biden administration had essentially banished the words “negotiating table” from its public discourse. Journalist Glenn Greenwald has commented of this narrative shift: “The West is now telling Zelensky, more or less explicitly and right out in the open: time to wrap this up.” This significant difference in public rhetoric has also begun to appear more and more in mainstream media, which has also very belatedly reflected the American public’s ‘war fatigue’ – which was already setting in even before Ukraine’s much-vaunted early summer attempt at a counteroffensive…

It’s widely believed that talks could already quietly be happening, and that Washington is finally pressuring the Zelensky government to find compromise. “U.S. and European officials have begun quietly talking to the Ukrainian government about what possible peace negotiations with Russia might entail to end the war, according to one current senior U.S. official and one former senior U.S. official familiar with the discussions,” an early November report in NBC said. “The conversations have included very broad outlines of what Ukraine might need to give up to reach a deal, the officials said.” Certainly, at the very least this will include Kiev permanently giving up any future claims on Crimea. But the question of the four annexed territories is what will determine whether a peace deal is reached or not.

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“He claims, as have other Democratic members, that “you can’t use hate speech.” That is demonstrably and completely wrong. Hate speech is protected under the First Amendment. You cannot commit hate crimes.”

Rep. Goldman Denounced “Dangerous” Rhetoric Using Dangerous Rhetoric (Turley)

Even in his freshman year, Democratic New York Rep. Dan Goldman has proven one of the most controversial members in Congress from attacking witnesses to inadvertently undermining the Biden defenses. The latest controversy involves a call to “eliminate” Donald Trump after accusing him of using “inflammatory rhetoric.” He has since apologized for his own language. Despite being one of the many past targets of Goldman’s wrath, I do not believe that Goldman was calling for violence. It was what I call “rage rhetoric” in my book The Indispensable Right. However, the incident shows the perils of criminalizing political speech. Goldman remains a favorite on MSNBC where he rarely fails to disappoint viewers with his brand of smash-mouth politics and rhetoric. It was, therefore, somewhat ironic for Jen Psaki to interview him on the inflammatory rhetoric in this election on MSNBC’s “Inside with Jen Psaki.”

Goldman responded: “rhetoric is really getting dangerous, more and more dangerous, and we saw what happened on Jan. 6, when he uses inflammatory rhetoric. It is just unquestionable at this point that that man cannot see public office again. He is not only unfit, he is destructive to our democracy and he has to be eliminated.” Some have called for Goldman to be investigated by the Secret Service. Others have called for a censure resolution. I do not agree. It was clearly reckless rhetoric and not a true threat. Yet, the incident shows how inflammatory terms are often used in politics. In the very same sentence in which Goldman denounced “dangerous” rhetoric, he proceeded to use dangerous rhetoric. Rep. Goldman has been one of the most vocal voices for prosecuting incitement based on such language.

In an interview with NPR, Goldman (who was counsel in the Trump impeachment) defended the use of such rhetoric as the basis for impeachment or prosecution: “there’s all sorts of speech that is criminalized. You can’t – you know, you can’t use hate speech. You – people – in all sorts of crimes. You can’t send death threats across, you know, the Internet. There are so many criminal laws that do criminalize speech, and so the notion that the president of the United States somehow has a First Amendment right to be protected by the government for his speech doesn’t make any sense. It’s a backwards argument, and it’s a loser.” As a threshold observation, the interview shows how dangerously ill-informed Goldman is on the First Amendment. He claims, as have other Democratic members, that “you can’t use hate speech.” That is demonstrably and completely wrong. Hate speech is protected under the First Amendment. You cannot commit hate crimes.

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“I have endorsed him wholeheartedly,” Johnson said. “He had a phenomenal first term. His first two years, as you all know, we brought about the greatest economic numbers in the history of the world, not just the country, because his policies work.”

‘All In’ for Trump House Speaker Johnson Pays Visit to Mar-a-Lago (Sp.)

On Monday, US House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) made the pilgrimage to Mar-a-Lago, the estate of former US President Donald Trump, who is leading the polls among Republicans in the 2024 race for the presidency. According to US media reports, Johnson attended a fundraiser hosted by Trump for US Rep. Gus Bilirakis (R-FL) who, like Johnson, is a close supporter of Trump. It was reportedly the first time Johnson and Trump have spoken since the Louisiana lawmaker became House Speaker a month ago. The previous Speaker, Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), had a troubled relationship with the former president, and it was ultimately a strongly pro-Trump faction of the House GOP Caucus that caused McCarthy’s eviction from the Speaker’s seat in early October.

In the fracas of selecting a new Speaker, Trump endorsed Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) instead of Johnson and even floated the idea of him becoming Speaker himself for a time, since the Constitution doesn’t require that the Speaker be a sitting member of Congress. However, Trump did eventually urge Republican lawmakers to rally behind Johnson because he was the leading candidate and the lower Congressional chamber had been without leadership for three weeks. After Johnson was elected Speaker, Trump praised him for being an underdog. “At this time yesterday, nobody was thinking of Mike,” Trump said. “And then we put out the word, and now he’s the Speaker of the House. So I want to just thank all of the supporters that I have, and I want to thank all the supporters that Mike has, and again, he’ll be a great Speaker. I think you’re going to be very proud.”

Johnson has remained loyal to Trump, too. Johnson and Bilirakis were both signatories of an amicus brief to the US Supreme Court in late 2020 that supported Trump’s claim that the November 2020 election had been marred by fraud, invalidating his loss to Joe Biden. While those claims have been widely discredited in the years since, including by many who were part of Trump’s cabinet at the time, Johnson is one figure who has maintained that the 2020 election was “stolen” from Trump. Last week, Johnson told reporters he was “all in” on Trump’s 2024 election bid. “I have endorsed him wholeheartedly,” Johnson said. “He had a phenomenal first term. His first two years, as you all know, we brought about the greatest economic numbers in the history of the world, not just the country, because his policies work. And I’m all in for President Trump.”

Trump has not yet won the Republican National Committee’s endorsement as their presidential candidate, but has led the pack of candidates since announcing his intention to run. The latest poll by Morning Consult found two-thirds of GOP voters ready to pull the lever for Trump in November 2024; however another poll by Harvard CAPS-Harris found that 60% of likely Trump voters said there is “at least some chance” they would support a different candidate. Behind Trump, the Morning Consult poll found just 13% of GOP voters support Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and 9% support former UN ambassador Nikki Haley. However, Trump is also facing down several criminal cases that have levied a wide array of federal offense accusations at him, including related to the January 6, 2021, insurrection by his supporters at the US Capitol and the classified documents found at Mar-a-Lago during an FBI raid in August 2022. Some of the charges could bar him from running for public office if he is found guilty.

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There are so many of these, it’s hard to keep track.

Trump Seeks To Halt Gag Order In Election Meddling Case (BBC)

An appeals court is weighing a bid by Donald Trump to halt the limited gag order he faces in his federal trial on election subversion charges. The order keeps Mr Trump from speaking out against court personnel, potential witnesses or the special counsel’s office. It is currently on hold. Lawyers for the former president and current Republican frontrunner called for the order to be revoked. But a three-judge panel appeared sceptical over lifting the restriction. The trio of Democratic appointees grilled both sides over the most appropriate way to balance free speech considerations with the integrity and safety of those involved in a criminal trial that begins next March. After an initial hearing that was scheduled for 40 minutes but lasted more than two hours, the judges did not issue an immediate ruling.

Attorneys for Mr Trump had challenged what they called an effort to censor his speech in the midst of a hotly contested presidential campaign. But prosecutors with the US justice department argued he has a “well-established practice of using his public platform to target his adversaries”. Mr Trump’s criticism of those involved in the federal case over the 2020 election had occurred most recently this weekend, they noted. At a Saturday campaign rally in Iowa, Mr Trump called Special Counsel Jack Smith, the key prosecutor involved in the case, “deranged” and a “Trump-hating prosecutor”. He also said that Mr Smith’s “wife and family despise me much more than he does”, at “about a 15 on a scale of 10”.

They were the types of remarks that Judge Tanya Chutkan, who is overseeing the election subversion case, has sought to limit since she issued a “narrowly tailored” gag order last month. Her intention, she said, was to prevent “a pre-trial smear campaign”. “The order is unprecedented and it sets a terrible precedent for future restrictions on core political speech,” John Sauer, Mr Trump’s attorney, told the Washington DC appeals court on Monday. Mr Sauer claimed there was no evidence that anybody involved in the case was facing an “imminent, pending threat” because of Mr Trump.

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“Yes, there was an insurrection of sorts. Those in power hated Donald Trump so much that they were willing to torture and even murder their fellow Americans to keep him from the presidency. Unless these people are brought to justice, we will have no Republic left to defend.”

We Must Demand Justice for the January 6th Protestors! (Ron Paul)

New US House Speaker Mike Johnson struck a blow for liberty and justice last week when he finally authorized the release of all the tapes from the January 6, 2021 “insurrection.” We were told by no less than President Biden himself that this was the “worst attack on our democracy since the Civil War.” The FBI was unleashed by the Biden Administration to hunt down hundreds of participants in this “insurrection” and lock them up in the gulag where they awaited trial in torturous conditions – many in solitary confinement. A Congressional Committee was set up under then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi to “get to the bottom” of the “Trump-led insurrection.” It did not include a single Representative nominated by the opposition Republican Party, but rather two “Republicans” – Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger – who could be relied on by Pelosi and the Democrats to toe the line.

In short, the whole thing was an old-fashioned Soviet show trial, where the evidence was kept secret and the pre-determined verdict – guilty – was to be used to tighten the grip of the ruling regime and intimidate any further dissenters into silence. The message was clear: “speak out against the ‘perfection’ of the 2020 election and you may find yourself in the gulag along with the insurrectionists.” It was terrifying and profoundly anti-American. And, as we finally can see for ourselves thanks to Speaker Johnson, it was a huge lie. The new video shows demonstrators shaking hands with police officers once they entered the Capitol Building. They were welcomed into the building by officers who even held the doors for them to enter! They had no way of knowing that they would soon be rounded up and locked away.

Does that mean no crimes were committed on January 6th? Not at all. The tapes already released were carefully chosen to single out examples of violence and other possible criminality. But the full release of the tapes demonstrates beyond a doubt that the endless propaganda that this was a coordinated attempt to overthrow the government was false. And as for that violence and mayhem on January 6th? How much of it was instigated by undercover FBI agents? New footage clearly shows officers outside the building firing on protestors with no warning. That must be why, in hearing after hearing, Biden Administration officials like Attorney General Merrick Garland have refused to tell Congress the number of federal agents present and their roles in instigating violence.

The release of this evidence should immediately result in the release of all non-violent protestors awaiting trial or serving their sentences. Those in power responsible for promoting this lie should take their places in the jail cells. This delayed justice will not help protesters like Matthew Perna, however. Though the new video release clearly shows him calmly walking inside the Capitol in the presence of unconcerned police officers, when Merrick Garland’s Department of “Justice” announced they would seek terrorism charges against him, Perna, in despair, decided to hang himself in his garage. Yes, there was an insurrection of sorts. Those in power hated Donald Trump so much that they were willing to torture and even murder their fellow Americans to keep him from the presidency. Unless these people are brought to justice, we will have no Republic left to defend.

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Texas AG Ken Paxton is busy. He has officially opened an investigation into Media Matters for potential fraudulent activity, and sued Pfizer at the same time.. Both of whom are dealing with the same judge.

Texas AG Sues Pfizer Over Tainted Children’s Drugs (ZH)

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton has sued Pfizer and Tris Pharma “for defrauding the Texas Medicaid program by providing adulterated pharmaceutical drugs to Texas children.” Specifically, Pfizer’s ADHD drug “Quillivant XR” was “knowingly distributed” to children on Medicaid despite the drugmaker’s “pattern of failing quality control tests” due to a flawed manufacturing process by Tris, which Pfizer contracted with to produce the drug, according to the complaint. “I am horrified by the dishonesty we uncovered in this investigation,” said Texas AG Ken Paxton. “Pfizer and Tris intentionally concealed and failed to disclose the issues with Quillivant to receive taxpayer funded benefits through Texas Medicaid, defrauding the state and endangering children.

Our Civil Medicaid Fraud Division has done an outstanding job holding these pharmaceutical companies accountable.” According to the filing, “At no point did Defendants warn Texas Medicaid providers or decision-makers that Quillivant had known manufacturing issues affecting its efficacy, thereby depriving the Medicaid program of the crucial information it relies on.… As a result, thousands of Texas children received an adulterated Schedule II Controlled Dangerous Substance.”The lawsuit, initially filed under seal, was unsealed at the AG’s request.

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“Barnea, who represents the CIA and Pompeo, contended that the Fourth Amendment right to privacy under the U.S. Constitution did not apply at the Ecuador embassy in London..”

Lawsuit Against Alleged CIA Spying On Assange Visitors (Gosztola)

United States court held an extraordinary hearing on November 16, where a judge carefully considered a lawsuit against the CIA and former CIA director Mike Pompeo for their alleged role in spying on American attorneys and journalists who visited WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. Judge John Koeltl of the Southern District of New York pushed back when Assistant U.S. Attorney Jean-David Barnea refused to confirm or deny that the CIA had targeted Americans without obtaining a warrant. He also invited attorneys for the Americans to update the lawsuit so that claims of privacy violations explicitly dealt with the government’s lack of a warrant. In August 2022, four Americans sued the CIA and Pompeo: Margaret Ratner Kunstler, a civil rights activist and human rights attorney; Deborah Hrbek, a media lawyer who represented Assange or WikiLeaks; journalist John Goetz, who worked for Der Spiegel when the German media organization first partnered with WikiLeaks; and journalist Charles Glass, who wrote articles on Assange for The Intercept.

The lawsuit alleged that as visitors Glass, Goetz, Hrbek, and Kunstler were required to “surrender” their electronic devices to employees of a Spanish company called UC Global, which was contracted to provide security for the Ecuador embassy. UC Global and the company’s director David Morales “copied the information stored on the devices” and shared the information with the CIA. The agency even had access to live video and audio feeds from cameras in the embassy. On June 4, 2023, the Spanish newspaper El País reported that UC Global director David Morales had a folder on his laptop marked “CIA.” Spanish police initially withheld 213 gigabytes of files in a criminal case against Morales that has unfolded as the U.S. government pursues Assange’s extradition on Espionage Act charges. (Morales and UC Global were sued as well.)

Often a lawsuit—especially one involving allegations of illegal and unchecked surveillance—would end swiftly. A judge would accept all of the “national security” arguments made by the CIA and dismiss the case. However, Koeltl has chosen to be more fair and measured when assessing the stunning allegations. Barnea, who represents the CIA and Pompeo, contended that the Fourth Amendment right to privacy under the U.S. Constitution did not apply at the Ecuador embassy in London. The CIA did not play a “sufficient role in controlling or directing” the actions of Morales and UC Global contractors. When Barnea maintained that CIA access to live video feeds would not necessarily mean that the agency was in control or directing UC Global, Koeltl seemed baffled.

“So U.S. agents were monitoring the feed in the United States, and that’s not sufficient involvement by the government?” “You don’t seem to dispute in your papers that a warrant would be necessary to seize the contents of the electronic devices,” Koeltl said, as Barnea outlined the government’s argument that Americans who visited Assange had no “reasonable expectation of privacy” when they entered the embassy. “You don’t seem to dispute in your papers that a warrant would be necessary to seize the contents of the electronic devices,” Koeltl said, as Barnea outlined the government’s argument that Americans who visited Assange had no “reasonable expectation of privacy” when they entered the embassy. Barnea replied, “I don’t believe that a warrant is ever required outside the United States. The Second Circuit [Court of Appeals] has held that the warrant requirement of the Fourth Amendment only applies within the United States.”


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Net Zero

 

 

 

 

Moderna

 

 

 

 

Carnivore

 

 

Belgium bicycle

 

 

Raccoons

 

 


Argentinosaurus lived on the then-island continent of South America somewhere between 97 and 93.5 million years ago, during the Late Cretaceous Period. It is among the largest known dinosaurs and this is the size of its leg (human for scale).

 

 

 

 

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Oct 202023
 
 October 20, 2023  Posted by at 5:32 pm Finance Tagged with: , , , , , ,  14 Responses »


Mondriaan Amaryllis 1910

 

Scott Ritter: US Not Ready for War With Iran (Sp.)
Israel Plans to Turn Gaza Into ‘Hiroshima’ Without Nukes – Sy Hersh (Sp.)
The US, Israel Dare Russia, China To Go To War To Save Arab Palestine (Helmer)
Pepe Escobar: Russia, China Map Out New Economic Order in Beijing (Sp.)
Israeli Gaza Operation Could Be ‘Mogadishu On Steroids’ – Petraeus (RT)
Mike Huckabee: Speaker Battle Shows Some Politicians Don’t Want Change (JTN)
Third Vote for Jim Jordan as Speaker Nominee Friday at 10:00am ET (CTH)
Iran In The White House (Kanekoa)
US Shaping Israel’s Ground Campaign Against Hamas – Bloomberg (RT)
Dem. Billionaire: Trump Foreign Record ‘Pretty Incredible’ In Hindsight (JTN)
Trump Offers To Visit Israel (RT)
Health Canada Confirms Undisclosed Presence of DNA Sequence in Pfizer Shot (ET)

 

 

We had some technical glitches today, hope they’re gone now. Danny and Willie are invaluable. But also, as I wrote to John Day earlier, “Don’t you love life, just for all the crazy stuff? Where would we be without chaos?”

Somewhere along the line, some techie changed the “theme” we use. Big deal, because it changes all fonts and spaces and you name it. We’ll be back to “normal” as soon as Danny’s back from his doctor’s appointment.

 

 

 

 

Nap Maersheimer

 

 

Israeli man Where is your brother?
https://twitter.com/i/status/1714724578797515077

 

 

Archbishop

 

 

Hospital

 

 

Al Jazeera

 

 

Channel4

 

 

Nasr

 

 

 

 

 

 

“..trying his best to muster the steely-eyed stare of a man who means business, “if we don’t, who does?” The answer, it seems, is no one.”

US Not Ready for War With Iran (Scott Ritter)

Generating combat power is one thing. Deploying it in a manner that is logistically sustainable is another. The US was able to deploy some 750,000 troops into the Middle East in 1990-1991 only because it had access to friendly ports and airfields in the region where troops and military material could be offloaded in uncontested fashion. Any general war between Iran and the US would inevitably result in Iran challenging any major US military deployment, which means the airfields and ports that would normally be used to support such a deployment would be under constant Iranian attack. As a result, the US would need to execute a forced entry option into Iran, seizing a major Iranian port city, such as Chah Bahar or Bandar Abbass. This would require a major amphibious effort where the ships containing the landing force would have to run a gauntlet of Iranian missiles that would cripple or destroy the landing force before it got within striking distance of Iran.

In short, the US cannot physically defeat Iran using conventional military power without undergoing a massive mobilization of resources that would be politically unsustainable. This leaves the option of an air campaign. Israel has long advocated for a military strike using air power against Iran. One of the major problems facing Israel is the physical distance between Israel and Iran, which would necessitate the kind of large-scale air-to-air refueling support that only the United States possesses. Israel and the US have carried out joint military training involving the air-to-air refueling of Israeli strike aircraft by US refueling aircraft as part of a training exercise known as “Juniper Oak,” conducted in January 2023. This training also included US bombers and ground forces.

The problem facing the US, however, is that Iran is a huge country which is not conducive to the delivery of a knock-out blow, even if delivered by the combined resources of Israel and the United States. Lindsey Graham’s threat to “knock Iran out of the oil business” may sound good to the opponents of Iran, but it is simply empty rhetoric. If the US and/or Israel were to target Iranian oil infrastructure, Iran would unleash a retaliation which would cripple the oil production infrastructure of the entire Middle East, including Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Such an action would throw the US and global economies into chaos. Moreover, Iran would retain sufficient strike capacity to devastate US military bases in the region and Israeli cities alike. In short, there is no military option available to either Israel or the United States, individually or working in tandem, that can defeat Iran.

In a recent interview, CBS News’ reporter Scott Pelley asked President Biden if the wars in Israel and Ukraine were “more than the United States can take on at the same time.” “We’re the United States of America for God’s sake,” Biden responded, with his trademark bellicosity, “the most powerful nation in the history—not in the world, in the history of the world. The history of the world. We can take care of both of these and still maintain our overall international defense. We have the capacity to do this and we have an obligation to. We are the essential nation, to paraphrase the former secretary of state. And,” he concluded, trying his best to muster the steely-eyed stare of a man who means business, “if we don’t, who does?” The answer, it seems, is no one.

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“Gaza City is in the process of being turned into Hiroshima with no nuclear weapons used..”

Israel Plans to Turn Gaza Into ‘Hiroshima’ Without Nukes – Sy Hersh (Sp.)

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) have every intention of staging in the Gaza Strip something similar to the US destruction of the Japanese city of Hiroshima, only without nuclear weapons, American journalist Seymour Hersh wrote in an article on Substack. “Gaza City is in the process of being turned into Hiroshima with no nuclear weapons used,” Hersh cited sources as telling him. Furthermore, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has every intention “to wipe out Hamas,” with little concern for hundreds of thousands of citizens of Gaza that were told to evacuate and move south of the enclave on October 12, underscored Sy Hersh, referencing unnamed intelligence analysts in Washington. Netanyahu formed an emergency unity government a few days ago with ex-military Chief of Staff Benny Gantz to bring his National Unity party into the governing coalition and join the war cabinet including Defense Minster Yoav Gallant.

Israel has vowed to “destroy” the Hamas movement ruling in the Gaza Strip after its attacks on Southern Israel. After calling up a reported 350,000 army reservists — totalling around a tenth of the country’s workforce — since October 7, Israel appeared to be holding back on an invasion. [..] While the Rafah crossing between the Gaza Strip and Egypt remains closed, at some point, “American-made bombs in the Israeli arsenal, including those known as “bunker busters,” may be targeted on the underground tunnel systems where Hamas manufactured the weapons and conducted planning for the horrific attacks in southern Israel on October 7,” wrote Hersh. “Under the Israeli plans, there would be no need for a massive ground invasion,” insiders had informed Hersh, while Israeli troops, “would be needed for hunting down those Hamas members underground who choose to surrender.”

However, the orders to the Israeli military, according to a cited official, would be “shoot on sight,” with surrender not an option. “The official told me that the Hamas soldiers who would emerge from the tunnels desperate for food were seen by the Israelis as starving rats who would be met with poisoned food. The fate of the nearly two hundred hostages, most of them Israeli but known also to include a few Americans, was left unsaid,” wrote Sy Hersh. Accordingly, Netanyahu’s plan, as per the official referenced by Hersh, is to ensure that the Israeli Army destroys the Hamas tunnel system, along with every member of the militant group they can hunt down. After that, the remnants of Gaza City would be purportedly barricaded at the southernmost end. Hamas “stragglers” would be tracked down as Israeli soldiers scored every block in the destroyed city.

Sy Hersh also weighed in on the visit paid by US President Joe Biden to Israel on Wednesday. After earlier sending to the eastern Mediterranean near Israel two US Navy carrier strike groups led by the USS Gerald Ford and the USS Dwight D Eisenhower, Biden pledged support to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s operation in the Gaza Strip. Recalling Biden’s Sunday interview for US media, where he conceded that while Hamas “must be eliminated entirely,” while adding that there “needs to be a path to a Palestinian state,” Hersh suggested that the latter was “not on Israel’s agenda.” His visit had come a day after an attack on the al-Ahli Arab Hospital in northern Gaza, where locals were sheltering from Israeli airstrikes on the enclave.

On October 17, a deadly attack on the al-Ahli Hospital killed hundreds of people. Palestinian authorities and the Israeli army have since been pointing fingers at one another for the disaster. Hamas said that the missile was launched by the IDF, while Israeli officials put the blame on the Palestinian Islamic Jihad movement. The entire international community was shocked by the catastrophe, with citizens across the globe rallying in support of Palestine and urging for a ceasefire. Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova stressed that the attack on the hospital is an “act of dehumanization.”

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“The new southern zone will be cordoned off by an Israeli ring of fire, and everything north of the line, including Gaza City will be destroyed, hospitals included.”

The US, Israel Dare Russia, China To Go To War To Save Arab Palestine (Helmer)

Call it a repeat of the SS ultimatum to the Warsaw Ghetto of April 1943 — evacuate and we’ll give you a small chance of surviving, or stay and we’ll kill you for certain. Following the embrace of President Joseph Biden and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the US has endorsed the Israeli plan to force the evacuation of the Palestinians from Gaza City to designated camps in the south. There Israeli forces will allow convoys of humanitarian aid to enter from Egypt and unload after Israeli forces have inspected the cargoes. The new southern zone will be cordoned off by an Israeli ring of fire, and everything north of the line, including Gaza City will be destroyed, hospitals included.

This formula has been pressed on Egypt, the other Arab states, China, and Russia to accept by the UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, a Portuguese government retiree, and his deputy for humanitarian affairs, Martin Griffiths, a British government retiree. They have emphasized there is no alternative to the destruction of Gaza, and its full absorption into the state of Israel. Reinforcing them, the US has cast its veto of all resolutions proposed in the UN Security Council (UNSC) by Russia, China and the Arab states to create humanitarian corridors under a ceasefire. China is preparing a new UNSC resolution to face the US veto shortly, according to a statement by Zhang Jun during Wednesday’s UNSC debate in New York. In Beijing, President Vladimir Putin and President Xi Jinping discussed between themselves what they plan to do jointly and publicly.

“Over a cup of tea”, Putin told Russian reporters on Wednesday evening, “we talked for another hour and a half, maybe two hours, and discussed some very confidential issues face to face. It was a very productive and informative part of our meeting.” “Informative” in Russian means they were unable to agree to make a public declaration of a Sino-Russian action plan. Instead, Putin announced he is deploying supersonic Kinzhal missiles within range of the US naval and air forces positioned in the eastern Mediterranean and in Jordan. “They have upped and dragged two carrier task forces to the Mediterranean. I want to say – what I am going to say and inform you about is not a threat – that I have instructed the Russian Aerospace Forces to start patrolling the neutral zone over the Black Sea on the permanent basis. Our MiG-31 aircraft carry the Kinzhal systems that, as is common knowledge, have a range of over 1,000 kilometres and can reach speeds of up to Mach 9.”

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Different worlds.

Pepe Escobar: Russia, China Map Out New Economic Order in Beijing (Sp.)

President Xi announced that participants of the business summit at the Forum clinched new infrastructure deals worth a whopping $97.2 billion. That’s the new paradigm. Compare it with the old Forever Wars paradigm: the White House working on a $100 billion package to fund the Ukraine-Israel wars. The 3-hour-long face to face meeting between Putin and Xi was crucial in more ways than one. It was a graphic illustration of Russia-China co-hosting the drive towards a multipolar world. And of BRI working side by side with the upcoming BRICS 11 (in effect on January 1, as Russia starts its BRICS presidency). Putin, sly as a fox, commented that he could not tell us “everything” he discussed with Xi. What he could say is that they went through “the entire bilateral agenda, a lot of issues there: it’s the economy, finance, political interaction, and joint work on international platforms.”

Additionally, “we discussed in detail the situation in the Middle East as well. I also briefed the president on the situation on the Ukrainian track in detail. All these external factors are common threats (italics mine). They strengthen Russian-Chinese interaction.” China-Russia signed the largest deal in their shared history for the supply of grain; 2.5 trillion rubles for 70 million tons of grain, leguminous and oilseed cargo delivered for 12 years. That completely destroys serial US Think Tankland wet dream scenarios advocating a naval blockade as the key strategy for the containment of China, to starve it of food and raw materials. On the energy front, Xi expected the extended Power of Siberia II, or Russia-Mongolia-China gas pipeline to make “substantial progress” as soon as possible. As much as Putin stressed both Russia and China’s “respect for civilizational diversity” as well as the right of each civilization-state to its own development model, what really stood out was his detailed explanation of connectivity corridors.

Putin stressed how “a North-South corridor is being formed in the European part of Russia – from the Baltic to Iran. Seamless railway communication will be organized there.” That was a direct reference to the International North South Transportation Corridor (INSTC), whose main hubs are Russia, Iran and India. That will interconnect, in the medium and long term, with BRI’s central Eurasian corridors. Putin added that “other sections will pass through Siberia, the Urals and Yamal. The Northern Sea Passage will be built – to the Arctic Ocean. The railway routes will run from central Siberia to the south – to the Indian and Pacific Oceans (…) A corridor will also pass from the Arctic to the south – a railway line from BAM to Yakutia will be built, bridges across the Lena and Amur, highways will be modernized, and deep-sea terminals will be created.”

Putin’s characterization of the Northern Sea Route is particularly crucial: “All these transportation corridors from north to south in the European part of Russia, in Siberia, and in the Far East open up the possibility of directly connecting and integrating the Northern Sea Route with major logistics hubs in the south of our continent, on the coast of the Indian and Pacific Oceans. As far as the Northern Sea Route is concerned, Russia is not just inviting its partners to actively use its transit potential. Let me say more: we invite interested states to participate directly in its development and are ready to provide reliable ice navigation, communication and supply. As early as next year, navigation for ice-class cargo ships along the entire length of the Northern Sea Route will become year-round. The creation of the above-mentioned international and regional logistics and trade routes objectively reflects the profound changes that are taking place in the global economy.”

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“..he doesn’t believe the IDF’s operation could be won quickly, and might even take over a decade.”

Israeli Gaza Operation Could Be ‘Mogadishu On Steroids’ – Petraeus (RT)

Israel’s conflict with Palestinian militant group Hamas could become even more violent and drag on for years to come if Israeli forces launch a group operation in Gaza, former CIA chief David Petraeus warned in an interview with Politico on Thursday. Speaking on the outlet’s Power Play podcast, the US general, who served in both Iraq and Afghanistan, claimed that a ground invasion of Gaza by the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) “could be Mogadishu on steroids very quickly.” Petraeus was referring to the 1993 incident in which three US Black Hawk helicopters were shot down in the capital of Somalia, leading to a fierce battle between local militants and American forces who attempted to rescue the crash survivors.

The former spy chief suggested that if Hamas turns out to be “as creative in the defense” as they were in the “horrific, barbaric, unspeakable attack” on Israel on October 7, “then you’ll see suicide bombers, you’ll see improvised explosive devices, there will be ambushes, booby traps, and the urban setting, again, could not be more challenging.” Petraeus noted that given his personal experience leading armies engaged in counterinsurgency campaigns, he doesn’t believe the IDF’s operation could be won quickly, and might even take over a decade. “It’s hard for me to imagine a more difficult setting than this particular one, and I was one who commanded forces in a number of major urban operations,” the general told Politico. “You don’t win counterinsurgencies in a year or two. They typically take a decade or more, as we saw in Iraq, as we saw in Afghanistan.”

Additionally, Petraeus stated that Israel already needs to think about how it intends to eventually restore and rebuild Gaza once it considers its battle against Hamas won. Meanwhile, Israel’s former defense chief, Benny Gantz, also admitted on Wednesday that the conflict between Palestinian militants and the IDF is unlikely to end anytime soon, and will probably last “for months,” while rebuilding Gaza could take “years. The latest violent conflict between Hamas and Israel erupted on October 7 when the militant group launched a surprise missile and ground attack into the country. In response, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declared that his country was at war, vowing massive retaliation. So far, the conflict has claimed the lives of more than 3,700 Palestinians and 1,400 Israelis, according to official data.

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The real swamp.

Mike Huckabee: Speaker Battle Shows Some Politicians Don’t Want Change (JTN)

Former Arkansas GOP Gov. Mike Huckabee says that the ongoing battle regarding the next House speaker demonstrates how some politicians are subject to the donor class and don’t want change in Washington, D.C. “In many ways, it is a power play,” Huckabee said on the “John Solomon Reports” podcast. “Some of it is not ideological, but there is an ideological tinge to it. There are people who want to make sure that Washington does not significantly change. And by change, I’m not talking about from the left to right, the Democrats, Republicans, liberals and conservatives. They don’t want the donor class to lose the power that the donor class has.”

Earlier this month, Rep. Kevin McCarthy R-Calif., was ousted by eight Republicans. Many of them initially opposed McCarthy’s speakership, and cited recent budget negotiations as the reason for ousting him. As of now, the House does not currently have a speaker. Rep. Jim Jordan R-Ohio, has lost two rounds of voting. He decided Thursday not to move forward with his bid and instead threw support behind a proposal to elevate Rep. Patrick McHenry R-N.C., from his post as speaker pro tempore to unelected speaker with the powers of the office for a period of time. “There are many members of Congress that are there because of the donor class,” Huckabee explained.

“They have remained there because of the donor class. They’re in power and they have positions because of the donor class. The last thing they can afford is for there to be a downgrading or even a demise of the donor class.” When asked if those opposing a Jordan speakership are doing so because they are afraid Jordan would actually cut government spending, Huckabee said he wouldn’t be too surprised if that were the reason. “There’s no doubt that that’s a part of it,” he said. “If it’s all about that, I don’t know. But I do think that there are people who fear that there could be a level of transparency that we simply don’t have and haven’t had, in probably forever, where the citizens can know exactly when they watched the votes who voted for what and how did that money actually get used? It’s a messy process.”

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“This internecine professionally Republican stuff has nothing to do with principle centered leadership, and everything to do with self-indulgences and personal affluence.”

Third Vote for Jim Jordan as Speaker Nominee Friday at 10:00am ET (CTH)

After a lengthy and often combative GOP conference earlier today, Jim Jordan’s office has announced there will be a 3rd vote for House Speaker Friday at 10:00am. “The House will vote Friday at 10 a.m. on a third speaker ballot, according to Jordan’s spokesman.” The UniParty Republicans had earlier floated an interim proposal to grant temporary House Speaker Patrick McHenry with additional authorities which would gain Democratic vote support. The concept was to get the House through a round of funding for Israel and Ukraine aid and avoiding a shutdown, until January. However, that effort fell short as the non UniParty Republicans would not agree to the plan.

(Via Politico) – “[…] Republicans are split. Jordan, for now, isn’t ready to call it quits, and some of his backers are gearing up for trench warfare. “I can tell you, nobody in our conference can get to 217 on two rounds, and three legislative days. So I think he deserves more time,” Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Ky.), a Jordan ally, told reporters. “I’m in favor of trying. For Jordan, I would go at least another week.” Yet his opponents insist there is no negotiation to be had that would result in him winning the gavel. They’ve already detailed death threats and intimidation efforts that they say have only hardened their anti-Jordan stance.”

The House GOP Speaker’s race is a system of conniving and positioning for a cushy committee assignment, indulgences from the lobbyist control apparatus, office locations and Machiavellian influence for the best junkets and largest leadership PAC deposits. That’s the truth, the non-pretending truth about the system at work behind the GOPe House Speaker vote. This internecine professionally Republican stuff has nothing to do with principle centered leadership, and everything to do with self-indulgences and personal affluence.

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X thread. Pretty crazy what Patel has to say.

Iran In The White House (Kanekoa)

Kash Patel highlights the unbelievable connections between three senior Biden intelligence officials—Robert Malley, Ariane Tabatabai, and Maher Bitar—and their associations with Hamas and Iran. On June 29, 2023, Robert Malley was placed on unpaid leave from his role as Joe Biden’s special envoy to Iran, and his security clearance was suspended due to an ongoing investigation into the potential mishandling of classified materials. On September 29, 2023, Semafor reported that Malley was involved in funding, supporting, and directing an Iranian intelligence operation to influence the United States and allied governments, as revealed by a collection of Iranian government emails.

These emails suggested that Malley facilitated the placement of an Iranian agent of influence named Ariane Tabatabai in sensitive positions within the U.S. government, initially at the State Department and later at the Pentagon, where she has been serving as Chief of Staff for the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Special Operations. On October 16, 2023, Revolver News reported that Maher Bitar, who is Senior Director for Intelligence Programs on Joe Biden’s National Security Council, was also an executive director of the “Students for Justice in Palestine” group that reportedly responded to the recent Hamas terror attack on Israel by organizing a “Day of Resistance” in support of Hamas’ “historic win” against Israel. Bitar was photographed wearing a black and white “keffiyeh,” a symbol of Palestinian nationalism, and standing in front of a sign that reads, “Divest from Israel Apartheid.”

Kash Patel has pointed out that Maher Bitar plays a significant role in determining intelligence prioritization for President Biden, even though there is a photo of him wearing Palestinian attire, calling for the economic and political boycott of Israel. Robert Malley, who recently had his security clearance suspended by the FBI, installed Ariane Tabatabai at the Department of Defense as the Assistant Chief of Staff for the Special Operations Office.Do you know what she did in 2014? “She emailed Iranian foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and asked for permission as a U.S. citizen to take a trip on behalf of the US government. This individual is still employed at the DOD.” Unbelievable.

Kash Patel
https://twitter.com/i/status/1715019075653394819

Read more …

“..the role and influence of the US in the Israel-Hamas conflict are “deeper and more intense than any exerted by Washington in the past.”

US Shaping Israel’s Ground Campaign Against Hamas – Bloomberg (RT)

The US is exerting unprecedented influence over Israel’s plans for a ground campaign against Hamas in Gaza, fearing that a massive attack could result in other regional actors joining the conflict, Bloomberg reported on Thursday, citing sources. According to the news outlet, while early into the conflict, Israel promised “coordinated strikes from the air, sea and land” on Hamas; its military later indicated that the ground operation “might be something different from what you think.” Bloomberg notes that this change in tone came after an unprecedented string of visits to Israel by high-ranking US officials, including President Joe Biden himself. According to three unnamed senior Israeli officials interviewed by the news agency, the role and influence of the US in the Israel-Hamas conflict are “deeper and more intense than any exerted by Washington in the past.”

While the US reportedly wants to see Hamas’ military infrastructure in Gaza destroyed, it seeks to limit civilian casualties in the Palestinian enclave, which is home to over two million Palestinians. In addition, Washington is concerned that Israel’s ground campaign could draw Hezbollah into the conflict; the Lebanon-based Islamist militant group maintains close ties to Iran, the report noted. This could potentially open a second front in the conflict, which could throw the entire region into turmoil and derail the White House’s efforts to stabilize the Middle East by promoting peace between Israel and Arab countries, the article says. While Biden on Friday condemned the Hamas attacks on Israeli civilians and signaled that he would ask the US Congress to approve additional security aid for Israel, he cautioned the Middle Eastern country “not to be blinded by rage.”

Meanwhile, on Thursday, Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant met with his country’s service members stationed near Gaza, telling them to “get organized, be ready” for the offensive. “Whoever sees Gaza from afar now, will see it from the inside,” he said. The conflict between Hamas and Israel erupted on October 7 when the Palestinian militant group launched a surprise missile and ground attack on the country, with hostilities resulting in thousands of dead and injured. In response, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declared Israel to be in a state of “war” and vowed retaliation. According to the latest official data, the fighting has claimed the lives of more than 3,800 Palestinians and 1,400 Israelis.

Read more …

“So much of the work that happened in that administration turns out to have been right. And that’s what’s so frustrating for me..”

“The work on the border wall, we didn’t like the messenger, so we killed the message. Turned out it was right.”

Dem. Billionaire: Trump Foreign Record ‘Pretty Incredible’ In Hindsight (JTN)

Amid ongoing chaos in the Middle East and American involvement in multiple conflicts on the global stage, one Democratic billionaire is reevaluating the Trump administration’s tenure, which notably saw the U.S. enter into no new major wars. Former Facebook executive Chamath Palihapitiya, a Democrat who increasingly leans toward the political right, said that “Trump Derangement Syndrome” has prevented people from honestly evaluation the administration in a recent episode of the All-In Podcast. “What those guys did was pretty incredible, in hindsight,” he said. “To really be able to, like, find long-lasting peace is just a real example for the world.” Palihapitiya cohosts the podcast with his friends. He had previously been critical of the administration, calling him an “an idiot savant, minus the savant” last year, according to the Epoch Times.

The billionaire went on to highlight the Abraham Accords, a landmark diplomatic agreement that saw Israel normalize relations with the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, while paving the way for similar developments with other neighboring nations. Apart from the Trump administration’s international accomplishments, Palihapitiya conceded that Trump’s efforts to build a border wall had largely been vindicated amid a broader surge in illegal crossings. “So much of the work that happened in that administration turns out to have been right. And that’s what’s so frustrating for me,” he said. “The work on the border wall, we didn’t like the messenger, so we killed the message. Turned out it was right.”

Read more …

Trump and Israel is not a great combination.

Trump Offers To Visit Israel (RT)

Former US President Donald Trump has said that he may visit Israel in the near future. Trump’s statement came after he harshly criticized Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for his apparent failure to predict Hamas’ attack on the Jewish state. “I may, I may go,” Trump told reporters outside a courthouse in New York, where he is facing a civil fraud lawsuit. “But I believe in letting them do what they have to do,” Trump continued, “They have to straighten it out. What’s happening in Israel is all of those people dead would have never happened… if I were president.” During his term in the White House, Trump oversaw the relocation of the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem and the signing of the Abraham Accords, under which Israel normalized relations with Bahrain, Morocco, Sudan, and the United Arab Emirates.

Trump often touted his close personal relationship with Netanyahu, and described himself as “history’s most pro-Israel US president.” That relationship has since deteriorated. Speaking to Fox News last week, Trump claimed that Netanyahu “was not prepared” for Hamas’ surprise attack. “He was not prepared, and Israel was not prepared,” Trump said, adding that the Israeli PM “has been hurt very badly because of what’s happened.” At a campaign rally in Florida several days later, Trump said that Israel needs to “straighten out” its intelligence agencies, and that Netanyahu “let us down” by declining to participate in the 2020 airstrike that killed Iranian General Qasem Soleimani.

Trump’s comments about a potential trip to Israel came a day after President Joe Biden returned from the country. Biden met with Netanyahu in Tel Aviv, where he promised additional military aid to Israel, and cautioned the prime minister not to become “consumed with rage” in responding to the Hamas attack. Israeli warplanes have been striking Gaza for almost two weeks, killing almost 3,800 Palestinians and wounding more than 12,000, according to the latest figures from the Palestinian Health Ministry. At least 1,300 Israelis have been killed in the same period, according to the Israeli military.

Read more …

Open the windows! People have a right to know what they’re dying of.

Health Canada Confirms Undisclosed Presence of DNA Sequence in Pfizer Shot (ET)

Health Canada has confirmed the presence of a Simian Virus 40 (SV40) DNA sequence in the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine, which the manufacturer had not previously disclosed. There is debate among scientists with regards to the significance of the finding, with some saying it has the potential to cause cancer, and others saying it poses little to no threat. “Health Canada expects sponsors to identify any biologically functional DNA sequences within a plasmid (such as an SV40 enhancer) at the time of submission,” the agency said in an email to The Epoch Times. “Although the full DNA sequence of the Pfizer plasmid was provided at the time of initial filing, the sponsor did not specifically identify the SV40 sequence.”

The regulator said that after scientists Kevin McKernan and Dr. Phillip J. Buckhaults publicly raised the presence of SV40 enhancers in the vaccines earlier this year, “it was possible for Health Canada to confirm the presence of the enhancer based on the plasmid DNA sequence submitted by Pfizer against the published SV40 enhancer sequence.” Both scientists have made waves after discovering plasmid DNA in the mRNA COVID-19 injections, warning it could potentially alter the human genome. However, the two share different degrees of concern about the significance of an SV40 sequence—which is used as an enhancer to drive gene transcription during the vaccine manufacturing process—being present in the shots.

Mr. McKernan, a former researcher and team leader for the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Human Genome Project, told The Epoch Times he suspects Pfizer didn’t disclose the presence of the DNA sequence due to the association of SV40 with polio vaccines. He said while there is no evidence the sequence is carcinogenic, he has concerns about its integration into the human genome. The polyomavirus Simian Virus 40, an oncogenic DNA virus, was previously removed from polio vaccines due to concerns about a link to cancers. Polio vaccines used in the late 1950s and early 1960s were found to be contaminated with SV40 as the virus was present in monkey kidney cells that were used to grow the vaccine.

Read more …

 

 

 

 

Climate

 

 


Both blocks are the same color. use your finger to cover the middle line. An example of the Cornsweet illusion using shading and gradients to challenge perception, an optical illusion that was described in detail by Tom Cornsweet in the late 1960s

 

 

Cat. Door.

 

 

 

 

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Oct 182023
 
 October 18, 2023  Posted by at 8:52 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,  43 Responses »


Henri Matisse Nu Blue IV 1952

 

Hospital Bombing A ‘Massacre’ And ‘Genocide’ – Palestinians (RT)
Arab Leaders Refuse To Meet Biden As Protests Rage Around The World (ZH)
Jordan FM Says Summit With Biden’s Participation Cancelled (TASS)
Failure of Biden’s Israel Trip Would be ‘Curse’ on 2024 Election Campaign (Sp.)
US Opposes Peace as Israel Ethnically Cleanses Palestinians (Norton)
Israeli Ground Operation In Gaza An ‘Ugly Blot On Humanity’ – Türkiye (TASS)
How Media Outlets Work With Israel To Control Gaza Narrative (Adley)
Putin Responds To Biden ‘Put Down’ Comments (RT)
Why Vladimir Putin’s Visit To Beijing This Week Is So Important (Babaev)
Trend Toward Mutually Beneficial Cooperation Unstoppable – Xi Jinping (TASS)
US Must Learn to Respect Other States, Find Compromises – Putin (Sp.)
Majority Of Americans Believe Both Biden And Trump Committed Crimes (Turley)
Pfizer May Go Bankrupt, Financial Markets Realize (Chudov)

 

 

Iran FM

 

 

Gaza hospital
https://twitter.com/i/status/1714352506204045320

 

 

NYC last night

 

 

 

 


Mr. Fish: The Obscenity

 

 

Poilievre

 

 

 

 

Trump
https://twitter.com/i/status/1714071667847094541

 

 

 

 

Twitter files

 

 

Schwab
https://twitter.com/i/status/1714363458030850421

 

 

 

 

“People left their homes thinking they were more dangerous and they moved to our schools and hospitals to be safe. And in one minute, all of them have been killed at a hospital.”

Hospital Bombing A ‘Massacre’ And ‘Genocide’ – Palestinians (RT)

A Palestinian Red Crescent representative on Tuesday described the destruction of the Baptist Hospital in Gaza City as a war crime and genocide, while a local doctor called it a massacre. Over 600 people have been reported dead, but it is feared the final death toll may exceed a thousand. “This is genocide. This is a war crime,” Nebal Farsakh of the Red Crescent told Al Jazeera. She explained that in addition to the patients inside, many Palestinian civilians had sought shelter in the hospital compound, after Israel ordered everyone in the north of Gaza to leave. “Those who were in front of the hospital were forced to leave their homes under the evacuation order. They can’t even afford to evacuate to the south. There’s complete destruction of the infrastructure and transportation,” she said, speaking from Ramallah in the West Bank.

“What’s happened is terrible because those people, all of them, are civilians. They fled their homes and reached a place that they believed was safe – a hospital, which according to international law, is a safe place,” Ziad Shehadah, a doctor in Gaza, told AJ. “People left their homes thinking they were more dangerous and they moved to our schools and hospitals to be safe. And in one minute, all of them have been killed at a hospital.” According to Shehadah, the final death toll could easily reach more than 1,000. “It is a massacre,” he added. Al-Ahli hospital is run by the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem, an Anglican Christian denomination. Its destruction was denounced by the World Health Organization, Egypt, Qatar and Türkiye, among others.

Israel has denied striking the hospital, however. IDF spokesman Daniel Hagari said that “an enemy rocket barrage was carried out towards Israel, which passed through the vicinity of the hospital when it was hit.” “According to intelligence information, from several sources we have, the Islamic Jihad terrorist organization is responsible for the failed shooting that hit the hospital,” Hagari added. The same claim was echoed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu shortly afterwards. Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh insisted that such “brutality” by Israel confirmed its “defeat” on October 7, and said the US was ultimately to blame. “The US holds the responsibility of the hospital attack because of the cover it gives to the Israeli aggression,” Haniyeh said. He also called for Palestinians in the West Bank to rise up against Israel.

Within minutes of Haniyeh’s statement, a riot broke out in Ramallah, as hundreds of Palestinians protested against President Mahmoud Abbas’ decision to meet with US President Joe Biden on Wednesday. Abbas has reportedly canceled those plans since, citing the hospital attack. In nearby Jordan, dozens of protesters attempted to break into the Israeli embassy in Amman, but were dispersed by police. Russia and the United Arab Emirates have called for an emergency session of the UN Security Council on Wednesday, to discuss the Gaza hospital attack.

https://twitter.com/jacksonhinklle/status/1714405328387813818

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Street protests literally everywhere in the world.

“There is no point in doing anything at this time other than stopping this war..” “There is no benefit to anyone in holding a summit at this time.”

Arab Leaders Refuse To Meet Biden As Protests Rage Around The World (ZH)

Update(1820ET): As expected, the fallout from the al-Ahli Baptist Hospital bombing has been swift, with a domino effect of negative consequences both for diplomacy and on the ‘Arab street’. The situation outside the US Embassy in Beirut is deteriorating tonight, with reports of riot police and tear gas being deployed against large crowds waving Hezbollah flags. But more importantly, and just as Air Force One is departing Washington for Israel, the White House has canceled the entire leg of Biden’s trip to Jordan. The confirmation was issued within the same hour that Arab leaders announced they were unwilling to meet with Biden, given the US is Israel’s biggest funder and supporter.

Biden issued a statement “deepest condolences” to victims of Gaza “hospital explosion,” according to the White House official statement: “After consulting with Jordan King Abdullah II & in light of the days of mourning announced by Palestinian Authority President Abbas, President Biden will postpone his travel to Jordan and the planned meeting with these two leaders and Egypt President Sisi. The President sent his deepest condolences for the innocent lives lost in the hospital explosion in Gaza, and wished a speedy recovery to the wounded.”

So even before arriving in Israel, the Tuesday massacre – which Israel is actually blaming on Palestinian militants (specifically PIJ) – has effectively served to box-in Biden. France’s Macron has just issued a condemnation to boot, saying “nothing can justify targeting civilians” in a statement which appears to place blame squarely on the Israelis. Biden will now also face the pressure to join the chorus of international condemnation. “International humanitarian law is binding on all and must enable the protection of civilian populations. Humanitarian access to the Gaza Strip must be opened up without delay,” the French foreign ministry said in the statement. Here’s what Jordan had to say: “There is no point in doing anything at this time other than stopping this war,” Jordan’s Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi said on Al Jazeera Arabic early Wednesday morning. “There is no benefit to anyone in holding a summit at this time.”

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No longer feasible. Those days went by rapidly.

Jordan FM Says Summit With Biden’s Participation Cancelled (TASS)

Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi said the October 18 summit in Amman, expected to be attended by US President Joe Biden, has been cancelled. “We made the decision not to hold the four-party summit in Amman,” the minister said in a comment to Al Jazeera. He said the top-level meeting was cancelled after consultations with other partners – Egypt, the United States and Palestine. “Our decision not to hold the four-party summit was made after consultations with the Palestinian authorities, Cairo and Washington,” Safadi said. Meanwhile, the White House said early on Wednesday that Biden had cancelled his visit to Jordan. “After consulting with King Abdullah II of Jordan and in light of the days of mourning announced by President Abbas of the Palestinian Authority, President Biden will postpone his travel to Jordan and the planned meeting with these two leaders and President Sisi of Egypt,” a White House spokesperson said in a statement.

According to the release, the US president “looks forward to consulting in person with these leaders soon, and agreed to remain regularly and directly engaged with each of them over the coming days.” Biden also conveyed his condolences for the innocent lives lost in the hospital explosion in Gaza. The summit was scheduled to take place on October 18, in the Jordanian capital of Amman. It was expected to bring together US President Joe Biden, Jordanian King Abdullah II, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. A spokesperson for the Fatah movement, led by Abbas, said late on Tuesday that the Palestinian president refused to participate in the talks.

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Failure guaranteed even before his plane touches down.

“Palestine belongs to the great three religions and this is only going to put the Jewish state at stake, at risk, if these kinds of things are going to be done wrongly.”

Failure of Biden’s Israel Trip Would be ‘Curse’ on 2024 Election Campaign (Sp.)

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced on Tuesday that US President Joe Biden would visit Israel in the coming days as the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) prepare to launch a ground invasion of the Gaza Strip. Speaking in the Israeli coastal city of Tel Aviv, Blinken said Biden would “reaffirm the United States’ solidarity with Israel and our ironclad commitment to its security,” and would “receive a comprehensive brief on Israel’s war aims and strategy” as it amasses 350,000 troops to invade Gaza. Having traveled to Israel a day prior, Blinken has pressured the Israeli government to allow humanitarian corridors to open into Gaza, which has been under “complete siege” for more than a week.

The IDF bombing campaign has killed more than 2,800 in Gaza since October 7, when Hamas launched an unprecedented raid into Israeli territory that killed more than 1,300 Israelis in several border settlements near Gaza. Blinken said Biden would oversee implementation of “a plan that will enable humanitarian aid from donor nations and multilateral organizations to reach civilians in Gaza” without “benefiting” Hamas, which governs the Gaza Strip. Riyadh-based political analyst Dr. Ahmed al-Ibrahim told Sputnik on Tuesday that regional trust had waned in Washington’s ability or willingness to mediate the 75-year-long conflict between Israel and the Palestinians, but noted that the conflict would continue until both sides are willing to make hard choices to satisfy the others’ concerns.

“Traditionally, the United States is the custodian of Israel and they have unlimited support for Israel. Biden wants to show that to the world – that the United States is standing behind Israel at anything that Israel needs and has unconditional support for the Israelis. Of course, let’s not forget that he’s taking this opportunity to position himself [in] the presidential election that’s coming up, so he can get the Jewish votes inside the United States and show that he can turn things in the Middle East and use it in the favor of Israel.” “Definitely, this is going to be held as a kind of campaign for Biden, that he can still solve issues in the Middle East, and he’s going to use it for his campaign,” Dr. Al-Ibrahim said, noting that ”it is very sensitive. It is not uncomplicated, because if he does not do it right, this thing is going to accelerate so much that it will be beyond control. So if Biden doesn’t come with the right formula in order to solve it, it could be a curse on his election in 2024.”

Dr. Al-Ibrahim said that after arriving in Israel, Biden would most likely not attempt to position himself as a mediator in the conflict between Israel and Hamas, but to support Israel as it prepares for a ground invasion of the Gaza Strip, which the commentator said would be “a big mistake.” “It’s only going to fuel [strife in] the whole Middle East and it’s going to fuel probably 2 billion Muslims and 2.5 billion Christians. Palestine belongs to the great three religions and this is only going to put the Jewish state at stake, at risk, if these kinds of things are going to be done wrongly.”

“We know that Gaza is the most geographically dense location in the world. However, we all agree, Saudi Arabia agreed from before, that Hamas is not the government that should control Gaza. It should be another government, not radical, like Hamas. And this issue needs to be put on the table. If Biden doesn’t balance the situation between the Palestinians and the Israelis, this can be expanded geographically. And it’s a very sensitive issue for the Israelis right now and for the Palestinians to really have a permanent solution and to go back to the two-state solution. This is what basically [Saudi] Prince Mohammed bin Salman has conveyed very strongly to Secretary Blinken,” Dr. Al-Ibrahim said. However, Dr. Al-Ibrahim said that people in the Middle East have “given up” on US policy in the region and “lost trust” that any American politician is actually interested in solving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

“Is it incompetency? Is it the strategy? Nobody knows. The Middle East region lives off of conspiracies, these conspiracies are an issue with them. The Palestinian file is very close and dear to the Middle Eastern people and they are looking at the Palestinians and they see that their rights have been taken, and the Israelis are only gaining more land and not giving anything to the Palestinians – no dignities, no land, nothing.” “Everybody blames America in this region for what’s happening, everybody. It’s not necessarily that they have an evil strategy in order to execute things,” he explained. “It’s maybe incompetence. They are looking at the matters in their own country and not getting them right. Look at Iraq, look at Afghanistan, look at Ukraine – look at all these countries. The war starts, and there is no right execution, chaos and hell starts happening in the region.

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“We may be about to see massive ethnic cleansing” – a clear indication that Western capitals know exactly what Israel is doing.”

US Opposes Peace as Israel Ethnically Cleanses Palestinians (Norton)

The Israeli government is in the process of ethnically cleansing more than 1 million Palestinians, pushing them out of their homes in Gaza. According to senior Israeli officials, the plan of the far-right Benjamin Netanyahu government is to force Palestinians into the desert of Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula, where they will live in so-called “tent cities”. At the same time, Israel is brutally bombing the besieged Gaza strip – one of the most densely populated areas on Earth. There are even reports that Israel has attacked convoys of Palestinian civilians who were abiding by its evacuation order and fleeing from the north to the south of the 40-kilometer strip. Meanwhile, the United States has adamantly refused to support calls for peace. Instead, the State Department told US diplomats not to mention the phrases “de-escalation/ceasefire”, “end to violence/bloodshed”, and “restoring calm” when discussing Gaza, according to a memo obtained by HuffPost.

[..] According to Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative journalist Seymour Hersh, Israel’s plan is to ethnically cleanse Palestinians and force them into Egypt. Citing an anonymous high level source, Hersh wrote, “I have been told by an Israeli insider that Israel has been trying to convince Qatar, which at the urging of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was a long-time financial supporter of Hamas, to join with Egypt in funding a tent city for the million or more refugees awaiting across the border”. This plan was in fact confirmed by Israel’s former deputy foreign minister, Danny Ayalon, who previously served as the Israeli ambassador to the United States and a foreign policy adviser for far-right Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. In an interview with Al Jazeera reporter Marc Lamont Hill on 12 October, Ayalon stated:

DANNY AYALON: “This was, this is thought out. It’s not something that we tell them, go to the beaches, go drown yourselves, God forbid, not at all. There is a huge expense, almost endless space in the Sinai desert, just on the other side of Gaza. The idea is – and this is not the first time it will be done – the idea is for them to leave over to the open areas where we and the international community will prepare the infrastructure, you know, tent cities, with food and with water – you know, just like for the refugees of Syria that fled the butchering of Assad a few years ago to Turkey; Turkey received 2 million of them. This is the idea. Now Egypt will have to play ball here, because once the the population is out of sight, then we can go… I’ll tell you in a practical manner what we should do, and what we can do: create, like in the past, in history, a humanitarian corridor. When there is a humanitarian corridor – and we have been discussing this with the United States – then we can guarantee in this corridor that nobody will get hurt. Now, again, I say, there is a way to receive them all on the other side for temporary time, on the Sinai, because what did Hamas turn –

MARC LAMONT HILL: On the other side? Are we talking about Rafah? Are you saying the other side, they go to Egypt? DANNY AYALON: Yes, absolutely, absolutely. And Egypt will have to play ball. While Israel is ethnically cleansing Palestinians and killing large numbers of civilians, Western governments have showed unflinching support. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen both traveled to Tel Aviv to symbolically back the far-right Netanyahu government. The Financial Times reported that some EU officials are concerned “that the European Commission president could look as if she is endorsing military actions that will cause mass civilian casualties — and that will swiftly be labelled as war crimes”.

An unnamed EU diplomat told the Times, “We may be about to see massive ethnic cleansing” – a clear indication that Western capitals know exactly what Israel is doing. “Our fear is that we’ll pay a heavy price in the global south because of this conflict”, an anonymous EU official confessed to the newspaper. The vast majority of countries in the Global South support the Palestinian people in their struggle against Israeli colonialism. A rare exception is the far-right government in India, whose Prime Minister Narendra Modi represents a vehemently anti-Muslim Hindu-nationalist party, the BJP, which sees Israel’s religious ethnostate as an inspiration and potential model for its own plans for a so-called “Hindu rashtra”.

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The operation looks less likely by the minute. First it was on, then postponed due to bad weather (which was fine), and now the IDF says it’s “still undecided about whether to launch a ground offensive in the Gaza Strip..”

Israeli Ground Operation In Gaza An ‘Ugly Blot On Humanity’ – Türkiye (TASS)

Israel’s potential launch of a ground military operation in the Gaza Strip would result in the deaths of thousands of innocent people and represent an “ugly blot on humanity,” Omer Celik, a spokesman for Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), said on Tuesday. “A potential ground military operation by Israel in the Gaza Strip would lead to the deaths of thousands of innocent people, including women and children,” Turkish television news channel TRT Haber quoted Celik as saying. “It would be a catastrophe and an ugly blot on humanity.” According to the spokesman of the AKP, which is led by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the Palestinian-Israeli conflict can be settled through peaceful methods only. “First of all, the anti-humane bombardments of the Gaza Strip must be stopped and the blockade must be lifted and only then should the parties sit down at the negotiating table to reach a lasting and stable peace,” Celik added.

Israel Defense Forces (IDF) Spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Richard Hecht announced earlier in the day that Israel was still undecided about whether to launch a ground offensive in the Gaza Strip. Tensions flared up again in the Middle East on October 7 when militants from the radical Palestinian movement Hamas staged a surprise attack on Israeli territory from the Gaza Strip. Hamas described its attack as a response to the aggressive actions of Israeli authorities against the Al-Aqsa Mosque in the Old City of Jerusalem. Israel has announced a total blockade of the Gaza Strip and has been delivering rocket attacks on Gaza as well as some districts in Lebanon and Syria. According to the latest official data, more than 2,800 Palestinians have been killed since the renewed outbreak of violence, while over 11,200 others have sustained wounds. In Israel, over 1,500 people have lost their lives and over 4,200 have been wounded in clashes, including on the West Bank of the Jordan River.

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And the Guardian fired a cartoonist after 40 years of service.

How Media Outlets Work With Israel To Control Gaza Narrative (Adley)

This week’s coverage by Western corporate media underlined its inability to hold the world’s 4th largest military to account for war crimes and instead give airtime to Israeli military officials to incite genocide against Palestinians, who are caged like animals in the world’s largest concentration camp. Western corporate journalists cannot report neutrally on Israel/Palestine. And here’s just a few examples as to why: Let’s take The New York Times, for example. Not only has the newspaper constantly supported Israel’s expansionist policies, but it has also directly participated in the dispossession of Palestinians from their homes. The New York Times’ Jerusalem bureau is built on a Palestinian house that belongs to a noted Palestinian writer Ghada Karmi, a survivor of the Nakba.

The Times also often cooperates with Israeli officials. In 2014, for example, it received and obeyed an Israeli gag order to suppress the news that Israel had arrested a Palestinian journalist. From 2008 – 2012, The New York Times Israel bureau chief, Ethan Bronner, was exposed to having his 20-year-old son enlist in the Israeli army while he was actively covering the region for the newspaper. The so-called paper of record never made this public to its readers, raising serious questions of bias and a conflict of interest. The New York Times also fired Gaza photographer Hosam Salem following an intervention from Israel lobby group Honest Reporting. However, the paper had no problem employing Ethan Bronner and others like Isabel Kershner and David Brooks to write about Palestine while all three had offspring fighting in the Israeli military.

In general, the consolidation of corporate media since the 1980s has led to ownership by billionaire oligarchs or gigantic multinational corporations that have a strong stake in preserving the status quo of ensuring forever wars continue, and neither of whom want to see nationalist liberation struggles succeed. The orders come down from up high that news organizations have to support Israel. Axel Springer – a giant German broadcaster that owns Politico – has explicitly told its staff that it is their duty to support Israel and those that don’t should leave. A wave of firings of Arab journalists across Germany underlined this message. The BBC, meanwhile, is the state broadcaster for the United Kingdom, a nation that helped create the state of Israel in 1948. Many of its top foreign affairs journalists go on to work for NATO or big think tanks funded by weapons manufacturers who directly profit from war.

The BBC has been continuously criticized for not providing historical context to the crisis in Gaza and linking it to its own British colonial history of helping create the state of Israel through the Balfour Declaration and providing it with weapons to occupy Palestinian land ever since. American journalists who don’t toe the line on Israel/Palestine are frequently made examples of. CNN fired anchor Marc Lamont Hill for calling for a free Palestine. Katie Halper was fired from The Hill for (accurately) calling Israel an Apartheid state. And The Guardian sacked Nathan J. Robinson after he made a joke mocking US military aid to Israel.

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“.. none of this is going to happen,” because Biden has “already forgotten what he said.” “Dementia is a useful thing,” Medvedev added.

Putin Responds To Biden ‘Put Down’ Comments (RT)

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday addressed the comments made by US President Joe Biden about “putting down” Moscow, suggesting that the octogenarian American politician still has a lot to learn. “You live, you learn. One must learn, and then there won’t be a desire to ‘put down’ anyone, since that leads to problems. One needs to learn to respect others and seek compromise,” Putin said in Beijing, where he is attending the international Belt and Road Forum. The Russian leader was responding to a reporter who had asked for a comment on Biden’s statements, voiced in a ‘60 Minutes’ interview broadcast on Sunday by the US network CBS.

“Imagine what happens if we, in fact, unite all of Europe and Putin is finally put down where he cannot cause the kind of trouble he’s been causing,” Biden told interviewer Scott Pelley at one point, arguing that the US has “enormous opportunities to make it a better world.” Putin’s response was more diplomatic than the reaction of his predecessor Dmitry Medvedev, who currently chairs the Russian security council. Commenting on Biden’s words on Monday, Medvedev thanked the US president for clarifying his mission, but noted that “none of this is going to happen,” because Biden has “already forgotten what he said.” “Dementia is a useful thing,” Medvedev added.

Biden, 81, is the oldest US president to be sworn in. He has been dogged by persistent rumors about his deteriorating physical and mental health, driven by a history of mis-speaking in public. In a CBS poll last month, only 26% of respondents said he was physically and cognitively fit for the job, and only 34% believed he would make it to the end of his second term, if re-elected in 2024. At a campaign event in Pennsylvania in early September, Biden argued that his advanced years were actually an asset, because “the only thing that comes with age is a little bit of wisdom.”

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As the US is setting one part of the world on fire, Xi and Putin build a new world elsewhere.

Why Vladimir Putin’s Visit To Beijing This Week Is So Important (Babaev)

Vladimir Putin’s visit to Beijing this week marks the second Russia-China summit this year. This time, the president is paying a visit to his friend and strategic partner, following agreements reached during Xi Jinping’s trip to Moscow in March. At that time, the Chinese leader invited Putin to attend the third forum of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), which marks its tenth anniversary. The presence of the Russian leader at the event is especially notable given the occasional view (mostly from the West) that the project has reached a dead end. The scheme, launched by Xi in 2013 to link Chinese goods to European markets via trans-Eurasian land and northern sea routes, is indeed facing a dilemma. By erecting a new “iron curtain” on the borders of Russia and Belarus, Western Europe has fallen into its own trap, depriving itself of low-cost energy sources – the main driver of its economy since the 1970s.

At the same time, Western European countries are also closing off the possibility of importing cheap Chinese goods by land since Russia was the critical link in the ‘One Belt, One Road’ project. Meanwhile, sanctions on the supply of high-tech products to China and the refusal to allow Chinese investment in their markets are also jeopardizing Sino-European trade along the Northern Sea Route. Under these conditions, the BRI is looking for new points of growth, one of which could be fast-growing Russian-Chinese trade and the coupling of the initiative with the Moscow-led Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU). The EAEU and the Belt and Road pairing would be important for Russia in the context of its ‘pivot to the East,’ which is largely complete in exports and imports. China understands that trade with the EAEU is much more reliable than interaction with Western countries, albeit in smaller volumes.

After reaching almost $200 billion last year, trade between the two countries could exceed $300-350 billion in the medium term. The current transport infrastructure is struggling to cope with the growing flow of goods, and new solutions are needed. The leaders of Russia and China will discuss this at the Beijing summit. This could include new railway lines across their common border and through Central Asian countries, as well as pipelines. Given the full capacity of Power of Siberia, many expect Putin’s visit to finalize agreements on the construction of Power of Siberia-2, which will benefit both Russia, which is turning its gas flows eastwards, and China, which is looking for a cheap replacement for dirty coal. Likely, the conversation will also focus on building financial infrastructure.

Both countries are actively developing national digital currencies that could replace modern fiat currencies for settlements within two to three years. This will eliminate sanctions risks in this regard by removing the need for correspondent settlements while significantly automating cross-border payments. At the same time, it is crucial to convince Beijing of the need to allow large Russian banks to enter the Chinese financial system: Sberbank, Alfa Bank, and Gazprombank have already announced their intention to open branches, and the approval of the regulator will help to balance cooperation between the two countries, as Chinese banks have long and fruitfully worked in Russia. Of course, it is also essential for the leaders of Russia and China to discuss political issues, both within the framework of bilateral coordination and in the context of the activities of international organizations.

The expansion of BRICS presents both new opportunities and challenges. The activities of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization require long overdue improvements and a transition to a new level of interaction. Putin and Xi may also discuss the implications of the recent summit between China and the Central Asian states, as Beijing’s intention to turn it into a permanent institutional format is unlikely to please Moscow. In any case, it is time for the partners to synchronize their policies and outline new prospects for cooperation. Every meeting between Putin and Xi gives an impetus to the development of economic, scientific, technological, and humanitarian ties. Given that 2024 will be the year of the 75th anniversary of diplomatic relations between our countries, this should be particularly strong.

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“People’s striving for a better life and the aspiration of all countries for common development and prosperity are irresistible..”

Trend Toward Mutually Beneficial Cooperation Unstoppable – Xi Jinping (TASS)

The historical trend toward peace and mutually beneficial cooperation among countries cannot be stopped, Chinese President Xi Jinping said at a reception for the heads of delegations participating in the Belt and Road forum at the Great Hall of the People. “The historical trend toward peace, development and mutually beneficial cooperation cannot be stopped. People’s striving for a better life and the aspiration of all countries for common development and prosperity are irresistible,” the Xinhua news agency quotes him as saying. As he addressed the participants, Xi said that cooperation in the Belt and Road project pursued development goals, was aimed at yielding mutual benefits and carried “a message of hope.”

He also said that all the successes achieved in implementing this initiative were a collective merit of the governments, businesses and peoples of the participating countries. “In the past 10 years since the launch of the Belt and Road Initiative, China and its partners have worked together to uphold the spirit of the Silk Road, contribute to global connectivity, to build platforms for international economic cooperation and to give an impetus to global economic growth,” Xi stated, adding that the initiative would create a brighter future for the whole of humanity.

A photo session preceded the meeting. Russian President Vladimir Putin took a place on the right hand-side of the summit’s host Xi Jinping. Before that, immediately upon arrival, the Russian president and the Chinese leader shook hands and exchanged a few remarks. The third Belt and Road forum is taking place in Beijing on October 17 and 18, with over 4,000 participants from more than 140 countries in attendance. Russian President Vladimir Putin arrived as the chief guest of the event. The Belt and Road initiative is a concept Chinese President Xi Jinping proposed in 2013 with the aim to intensify multilateral trade and investment projects with the participation of countries concerned and Chinese and foreign capital. More than 150 states and more than 30 international organizations have already joined it.

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“If they [US] have no other tasks but to build relations with Russia, then in a sense this is not bad..”

US Must Learn to Respect Other States, Find Compromises – Putin (Sp.)

Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday, commenting on a recent remark of US President Joe Biden about the need to “put down” the Russian leader that the United States need to learn to respect others and be able to find compromises, then no one will need to be suppressed. In a recent interview with an American broadcaster, Biden stated that he is sure about running for the second presidential term. “All of Europe and Putin is finally put down where he cannot cause the kind of trouble he’s been causing,” the president claimed when asked to imagine what would happen if the US unites. “They need to learn to respect others and then no one will have to be suppressed. But the desire to suppress someone all the time for some reason or for no reason at all leads to problems. They [US representatives], of course, with their usual brilliance, love and do it well – they smile during protocol events, pat everyone on the shoulder.

But respect for other people, for other countries, for other peoples lies elsewhere, lies in taking into account their interests,” Putin told Pavel Zarubin, a Russian news agency reporter. If the United States has no other tasks than building relations with Russia then it is not bad, Putin said.”I believe that Biden is certainly one of the most experienced politicians in the world as a whole – in terms of time spent in the so-called upper echelons of power. He has been in politics for a long time. Of course, a person is experienced and knows what tasks to set for himself, how to achieve them. If they [US] have no other tasks but to build relations with Russia, then in a sense this is not bad,” Putin said, emphasizeng that Russia’s interests cannot be suppressed, but will have to be respected.

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Views are shifting despite the media.

Majority Of Americans Believe Both Biden And Trump Committed Crimes (Turley)

We recently discussed a poll showing that 68% of voters believe that President Joe Biden acted either criminally or unethically in connection to the foreign dealings of his son, Hunter Biden. Now a Fox poll has found largely that same response — a majority believes that both Biden and former president Donald Trump have committed criminal acts. It is an extraordinary political and legal moment where the two frontrunners for the presidency are believed to be criminal actors by many voters. The Fox polls shows that 52% of voters believes Trump did something illegal in connection to efforts to overturn the 2020 election and his handling of classified documents. Only 23% believe that Trump did not commit criminal acts.

Obviously, the results are driven by the overwhelming view of Democrats (86%) but independents (53%) also think Trump did something illegal. On the Bidens, 52% think Hunter Biden did something illegal in relation to his business dealings in Ukraine and China. That worsening situation is again driven on one side with Republicans. However, there was an 18% shift in independents that should worry the President. Some 40 percent believe that Joe Biden committed crimes. That is close to the 36 percent who shared that view in the earlier poll. What is particularly notable is that 69 percent now believe that Joe Biden acted with criminally or unethically — virtually identical to the other poll.

As I wrote earlier, the most striking aspect of these polls is the disconnect with the mainstream media. Despite overwhelmingly protective coverage for the Bidens, the public is simply not buying it. While both the Democrats and the media have been unrelenting in opposing investigations into the Bidens, the public has long supported such efforts. These consistent polls show that the public is tuning out the media spin on the corruption scandal involving the Bidens. It also shows (with both Trump and Biden) that the same roughly 25% remain constant for both candidates. NB: The headline and two lines were changed to reflect that the view of Joe Biden as a criminal actor has increased but remains under 50 percent. However, 69% now view the President as acting either criminally or unethically.

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“..legal protection granted to Pfizer by the PREP act will cease to protect it if significant fraud on the part of Pfizer is discovered.”

Pfizer May Go Bankrupt, Financial Markets Realize (Chudov)

The stock market may be waking up to the possibility that Pfizer may go bankrupt due to the upcoming Covid vaccine claims. Many parallels can be drawn between the corporate behaviors of Pfizer and Purdue Pharma, another pharmaceutical concern that dishonestly and aggressively marketed harmful products. Purdue Pharma went bankrupt due to the greed and depravity of its leaders, as their “legal protections” evaporated. The same may happen to Pfizer. Old, experienced vaccine companies like GSK refused to participate in “Covid vaccines” – and we now see why they made the right choice. Take a look at this chart: Pfizer’s stock (PFE) is valued at 25% less than it was five years ago, despite the billions of dollars it received from the sales of COVID vaccines, and the stock market and the pharmaceuticals index having gone up:

At first sight, Pfizer, a worldwide pharmaceutical juggernaut, should not be worth less than before the pandemic. Pfizer’s COVID vaccine made it billions and should have added value to the company, even if future sales of COVID-19-specific products cannot be assured. And yet, PFE has inexorably fallen since last November and is worth 25% less than five years ago, defying the general upside tendencies seen for other pharmaceuticals and the stock market. Since November of 2022, Pfizer has deviated from the trend of the pharmaceuticals index, underperforming by 35%. This can only be explained by the capital markets seeing something uniquely troublesome for Pfizer. This post will explore what it may be.

I am far from the first person suggesting that Pfizer, which aggressively marketed its COVID vaccines and underwrote a worldwide influence operation to mandate its product, may face ruinous liabilities. Ed Dowd, a former asset manager, was one of the first people to realize that. He explained that legal protection granted to Pfizer by the PREP act will cease to protect it if significant fraud on the part of Pfizer is discovered.

Read more …

 

 

 

 

Elephant Seal

 

 

Barracuda
https://twitter.com/i/status/1714220443173798290

 

 


Condor

 

 

Best friends
https://twitter.com/i/status/1714289662834155878

 

 

 

 

Yellow lane

 

 

Strandbeest

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Jun 292023
 


Gustav Klimt Lady with a fan 1917-18 (sold for $108.4m June 27 2023)

 

Standoff Between Russia And West Is ‘War Of Worlds’ – Lavrov (RT)
What Happens In Russia After The Longest Day? (Pepe Escobar)
US Hawks Lose Momentum Amid Faltering Ukrainian Counteroffensive (Sp.)
West’s Foolish Regime Change Policy Only Drives Russia and China Closer (Sp.)
Russia Can’t Give Up Goals Of Special Military Operation – Lavrov (TASS)
Russia Asks States To Boycott Zelensky’s ‘Peace Forum’ (RT)
Will US Use New Pretext to Prolong Proxy War in Ukraine? (Sp.)
Europe Must Break Out Of Its War Psychosis – Hungary (RT)
Russian General Arrested Following Wagner Mutiny (MT)
RFK Jr: Bill Gates, WEF Use Climate Narrative For Totalitarian Controls (JTN)
Pfizer Vaccine Batches in the EU Were Placebos, Say Scientists (DS)
Comer: Overseas Payments To Biden Family Could Exceed $40M (NYP)
New Source in Hunter Biden Probe Points Finger at AG Garland (Sp.)
Pressure Grows On Judge To Reject Hunter Biden Plea Deal (JTN)
Kamala Harris Worst VP in Polling History – NBC (Sp.)

 

 

 

 

Milley
https://twitter.com/i/status/1673729065243623432

 

 

Biden: Putin “is clearly losing the war in Iraq.”

 

 

Habba

 

 

 

 

Putin

 

 

Wallace

 

 

“Ukr sources report that the entry of PMC Wagner into Belarus is directed against the plans of Ukraine/Poland/Lithuania to deploy a corps on the borders of Western Ukraine. British intelligence warned Zelensky’s Office that a new military unit of 30-40 thousand people will be formed in Belarus, the main task of which will be a new campaign against Kyiv at the time of difficulties of the Armed Forces of Ukraine on the southern front. The equipment for these units has long been in Belarus, it was filled up during 2022-2023.”

 

 

 

 

“When it comes to our former Western partners, though, we cannot rely on any agreements with them, including those of a legally binding nature..”

Standoff Between Russia And West Is ‘War Of Worlds’ – Lavrov (RT)

Washington and its allies will never allow any nation to pursue a sovereign policy based on national interests if it conflicts with their own plans, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Wednesday. The ongoing standoff between Russia and the Western nations is a “war of worlds” involving incompatible approaches to international politics, he added. “Should any other nation try and defend its national interests just as staunchly and decisively, the West would turn against it as well,” the minister told the Great Game show aired on Russia’s Channel 1. The US and its allies still treat the “threat” posed by Russia to their plans as a “tactical” one but believe that Moscow’s victory would make this threat “unacceptable.” Western nations claim to defend a supposed “rules-based order,” the Russian minister said, adding that such an order is nothing but a dictate by Washington and its allies.

“It is when they [the West] decide on which globalization system applies to the world, what are its mechanisms… how trade disputes are resolved,” Lavrov said. The top Russian diplomat also said Washington and its allies had easily exploited principles they had previously declared to be inviolable. “The West has trampled on all its principles in an instant… free trade, fair competition, presumption of innocence… were all turned into weapons when they [the West] needed to punish the Russian Federation,” he said. “When it comes to our former Western partners, though, we cannot rely on any agreements with them, including those of a legally binding nature,” Lavrov maintained. The US and its allies have repeatedly bent the rules of the “order” they were supposedly defending and neglected their commitments under agreements struck with Moscow, the minister stated.

Washington and many Western nations recognized Kosovo’s independence without any referendums on the basis of a unilateral declaration by Pristina, Lavrov said, adding that the same countries dismissed the results of the referendum in Crimea, arguing that the principle of the territorial integrity of Ukraine supposedly takes precedence in this particular case. In February 2014, when the Ukrainian opposition broke their obligations under a deal struck with then-president Viktor Yanukovich, none of the Western guarantors of the agreement “lifted a finger,” Lavrov said, adding that the list of guarantors included France, Germany and Poland at that time. Now, the West is trying to pin all the blame on Russia, accusing it of “unprovoked aggression,” the minister said, describing this as nothing but an attempt to shift the responsibility from Washington and its allies.

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“The rebellion” turned out to be a Western P.R. stunt, a series of (ultimately faded) pictures for global consumption.”

What Happens In Russia After The Longest Day? (Pepe Escobar)

The first draft of the extraordinary events that took place in Russia on The Longest Day – Saturday, June 24 – leads us to a whole new can of worms. The Global Majority badly wants to know what happens next. Let’s examine the key pieces in the chessboard. Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov is cutting to the chase: he has reminded everyone that the Hegemon’s modus operandi is to back coup attempts whenever it can benefit. This dovetails with the fact that the FSB is actively investigating whether and how Western intel was involved in The Longest Day. President Putin could not have been more unequivocal: “They [the West and Ukraine] wanted Russian soldiers to kill each other, so that soldiers and civilians would die, so that in the end Russia would lose, and our society would break apart and choke on bloody civil strife (…) They rubbed their hands, dreaming of getting revenge for their failures at the front and during the so-called counter-offensive, but they miscalculated.”

Cue to the collective West – from Secretary of State Anthony Blinken on down – frantically trying to distance itself even as the CIA leaked, via its trademark mouthpiece, the Washington Post, that they knew about “the rebellion.” The agenda was painfully obvious: Kiev losing on all fronts would be ritually buried by wall-to-wall coverage of the fake Russian “civil war.” There’s no smoking gun – yet. But the FSB is following several leads to demonstrate how the “the rebellion” was set up by CIA/NATO. The spectacular failure makes the upcoming NATO July 11 summit in Vilnius even more incandescent. The Chinese, much like Lavrov, also cut to the chase: the Global Times asserted that the idea of “Wagner’s revolt weakening Putin’s authority is wishful thinking of the West,” with the Kremlin’s “strong capacity of deterrence” further increasing its authority. That’s exactly the reading of the Russian street.

The Chinese reached their conclusion after a crucial visit by Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Andrei Rudenko, who promptly flew to Beijing on Sunday, June 25. This is how the iron-clad strategic partnership works in practice. Arguably the best explanation so far of the nuts and bolts of The Longest Day has been offered by Rostislav Ischenko. The Global Majority will rejoice that Prighozin’s theatrics, in the end, left the collective West dazed, confused, and shattered: wasn’t the whole thing supposed to unleash total chaos inside Russian society and the army? Even as the fake, lightning-quick “mutiny” was in progress, Russia continued to pound Kiev’s forces – which, by the way, were spinning that the main phase of the “counter-offensive” was being launched exactly on June 24 at night. That was, predictably, yet another bluff.

Back to the Russian street. “The rebellion” – inbuilt in a very convoluted plot – in the end was widely interpreted as just another military demonstration (by master of ceremonies Prighozin, not by the overwhelming majority of Wagner soldiers). “The rebellion” turned out to be a Western P.R. stunt, a series of (ultimately faded) pictures for global consumption.

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“..it will be difficult for the Biden administration to justify increased military aid packages to Ukraine without some success story to tell the American people..”

US Hawks Lose Momentum Amid Faltering Ukrainian Counteroffensive (Sp.)

Ukraine has failed to demonstrate much progress in its counteroffensive so far, putting the brakes on those US lawmakers who agree that new funding should depend on such. “I agree with most observers that it will be difficult for the Biden administration to justify increased military aid packages to Ukraine without some success story to tell the American people,” retired US Air Force Lt. Col. Karen Kwiatkowski, a former analyst for the US Department of Defense, told Sputnik. “At this point, the Ukraine project is easily portrayed as a waste of time and money, and is something that NATO countries may not be able to support without continued massive US domination in the provision of aid and cash,” she said.

Currently, US military assistance comes to Ukraine via two main routes: first, direct supplies from the Pentagon stockpiles under the Presidential Drawdown Authority; second, the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative (USAI) – a Pentagon-led funding program to increase Kiev’s military prowess. However, “there’s no additional money in the base budget,” as per defense officials as quoted by the US media. As per the Pentagon, the US has invested $41.2 billion in security assistance to Kiev since January 2021 which includes more than $40.5 billion since the beginning of Russia’s special military operation to demilitarize and de-Nazify Ukraine. For its part, the Kiel Institute for the World Economy estimates that since the start of the Ukraine conflict, the Biden administration has directed over $76 billion in humanitarian, financial and military assistance to Ukraine.

Around $47 billion of that has been allocated to Kiev’s military needs, including $18.5 billion (through USAID); $23.5 billion (through the presidential drawdown authority); and $4.7 billion (through the Foreign Military Financing program). The generous military packages for Ukraine included: numerous infantry arms and equipment; artillery (hundreds of howitzers, 38 HIMARS systems, in particular); tanks and armored carriers (109 Bradley infantry fighting vehicles, 31 Abrams tanks, 45 T-72B tanks, 90 Stryker carries, etc.); ground support vehicles; air defenses (one Patriot air defense battery, 12 Avenger air defense systems, 8 NASAMs, and 1,600 Stingers, in particular); air-to-ground missiles; manned aircraft (20 Mi-17 helicopters); explosive and surveillance drones; coastal defenses (including two Harpoon defense systems and 62 coastal and riverine patrol boats); radars and communications; as well as satellite services, as per Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) chart.

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“..a stable and successful Russia is important for China because without Russia on its side, the Western powers would be able to totally isolate China.”

West’s Foolish Regime Change Policy Only Drives Russia and China Closer (Sp.)

In the wake of the aborted mutiny by Wagner PMC chief Yevgeny Prigozhin, China has voiced its support for the Russian Federation and Moscow’s efforts to stabilize the situation. “As Russia’s friendly neighbor and comprehensive strategic partner of coordination for the new era, China supports Russia in maintaining national stability and achieving development and prosperity,” a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson said in a Sunday statement. Thomas W. Pauken II, a Beijing-based geopolitical consultant with expertise in crisis management, told Sputnik that China has “an understanding that for their very own survival, they need Russia to succeed.”

“China supports a strong and stable Russia for many important reasons, obviously, because Russia is north of China and Russia and China are both facing pressure from the Western powers in regards to sanctions, while the US and other European countries are increasing their pressure on China,” he explained. “So because of this pressure, basically, China needs to rely more on its real partners, including Russia, because they can work together to strengthen both sides. If Russia and China split apart, that will not only create hardships for Russia, but will also create hardships for China.” Pauken explained that a stable and successful Russia is important for China because without Russia on its side, the Western powers would be able to totally isolate China.

“Political stability in Russia is important to China for a key reason: China has become a major manufacturer in the world. It is a major exporter to the world. But currently, there are many Western powers who are trying to contain China and contain China’s rise. Therefore, the Western powers are pushing and pressuring China to move against Russia. But China does not support this because they realize that if the Western powers are successful at knocking out Russia, then they will simply move on to China and attack China. So China does itself no favors by turning against Russia or by supporting instability in Russia. Obviously, they would want to see Russia succeed and for Putin to succeed, and for the mutiny that was led by Prigozhin to fail. It’s very logical for them. And it makes common sense,” he said.

On Sunday, after the situation had been defused, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Andrey Rudenko flew to Beijing to meet with Chinese leaders and reaffirm their close partnership and political trust. Pauken said it was “very significant” and sent a message to the Western powers that the Prigozhin affair had not created any “friction or tensions” between the two states. The official underscored that the recent meet between Chinese and Russian figures proved a “very important event because it shows their close relationships, and that they are not going to be driven or come apart over recent events, and the West is going to be unable to drive them apart.” “Instead, what’s really going on is that China and Russia are drawing closer together and we will see their relations get even stronger in the months to come,” he added.

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“..the destruction of all things Russian in Ukraine continues to be their stated goal.”

Russia Can’t Give Up Goals Of Special Military Operation – Lavrov (TASS)

Russia can’t give up the goals of its special military operation in Ukraine, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said. The minister said Russian President Vladimir Putin “in the past few days has spoken at length to give an assessment of the current situation, especially stressing that, as we overcame the attempted mutiny, we haven’t made the slightest concessions with respect to the goals of the special military operation and haven’t lost any positions on the battlefield. <…> It’s impossible to give them up – the goals that have been set,” Lavrov said on Channel One. The minister said that Russia cannot change its approaches to the conduct of the special operation as long as the West is purposefully creating threats to Russia’s security, funneling lethal weapons into Ukraine, and as long as “the destruction of all things Russian in Ukraine continues to be their stated goal.”

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..a “document that combines all the nonsense their propaganda has promoted in one place.”

Russia Asks States To Boycott Zelensky’s ‘Peace Forum’ (RT)

Countries of the Global South should not dignify with their presence the so-called peace summit the West wants to hold without Russia, the country’s Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on Wednesday. During the regular briefing at the ministry, Zakharova pointed out the “wild logic” of holding a peace summit without Moscow, calling it an attempt to “ritually discuss” the Western agenda and get moral and propaganda support from the rest of the world. “We call on responsible states, those that truly strive for peace and express the desire and readiness to play a constructive role in finding a political and diplomatic solution to the conflict, not to participate in this provocative scheme,” Zakharova told reporters.

“The West needs you at the ‘summit’ only to create the impression its policy has widespread support. This very thing will make the prospects for peace that much more distant.” The Russian diplomat pointed out that the West is trying to push the so-called peace formula of Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky as the only path to resolving the conflict. However, Moscow has repeatedly pointed out that the ‘formula’ has nothing to do with peace, but is a propagandistic set of demands based on absolutely false pretenses. Zakharova reminded reporters that Zelensky’s formula envisions Russia withdrawing from its own territory – including Donbass, Kherson, Zaporozhye and Crimea – paying reparations to Ukraine and submitting to ‘war crimes tribunals,’ among other things. She described it as a “document that combines all the nonsense their propaganda has promoted in one place.”

She compared the ‘peace summit’ with the countless round tables the US has organized over the years regarding the conflict in Syria, none of which produced any results whatsoever. To make peace, one must end the bloodshed and stop the supply of weapons, the diplomat noted, but the US and its allies continue to fuel both.“Attempts to determine the outcome of the Ukraine conflict without Russian participation are doomed to failure. Otherwise this would have been done long ago,”Zakharova pointed out. She also pointed out that Kiev has a history of reneging on its international obligations, mentioning specifically the Minsk Agreements concerning Donbass, which were even endorsed by the UN Security Council. “One can’t believe a word they say,”Zakharova said.

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“Ukraine still remains nothing short of being a “testing grounds” for the US military-industrial complex and justifies huge future investments in the militarization of Europe..”

Will US Use New Pretext to Prolong Proxy War in Ukraine? (Sp.)

The Biden administration needs a new pretext to enhance support to Kiev. Even though there is some bipartisan consensus in the US Congress on the “necessity” to back Kiev, there is opposition from the right-wing Freedom Caucus to further spending. US national polls also show that the US public is steadily losing appetite for prolonging the conflict. Two Republican presidential front-runners – Donald Trump and Ron DeSantis – as well as Democratic candidate Robert Kennedy, Jr., who commands the support of at least 15-20% of Democratic voters, openly express their opposition to Biden’s adventurism in Ukraine. Previously, Washington substantially stepped up military spending on Ukraine in the wake of the Bucha events groundlessly pinned on Moscow, as well as the derailment of the Russo-Ukrainian preliminary peace agreement of March 2022.

The Russian forces’ partial retreat in autumn 2022 also provided Team Biden with an opportunity to renew calls for further arming of Kiev under the pretext of Ukraine’s “imminent” victory. As Ukraine’s much-anticipated counteroffensive largely stalled in summer 2023, it appears that the Democrats are trying to capitalize on the Wagner mutiny of June 23-24 even though its quick settlement has seemingly caught Team Biden off guard, according to Paul E. Vallely, retired US Army major general and chairman of Stand Up America US Foundation. The US mainstream press expressed hopes that Kiev would be able to benefit from Russia’s “unrest”. However, despite Wagner’s mutiny, the Russian army has managed to keep the situation on the frontlines stable, repelling several Ukrainian attacks over the weekend.

“I don’t think Ukraine was going to be successful in the counter offensive anyhow,” Vallely said. “So I think the Wagner group, what they tried to do, probably surprised Ukraine as well. But I don’t think Ukraine was in a position to do anything to take advantage of it.” For her part, Karen Kwiatkowski noted that Washington was apparently hoping that “the Ukrainian forces would achieve at least one breakthrough along the lines of control, something to justify the massive Biden investment in Ukraine’s political leadership.” “Hope, as they say, is not a strategy, and I do believe that the Biden Security Council is and has been preparing plans for the post-combat phase, with talk of an Israel-like ‘outpost’, of a ‘green’ rebuild of western Ukraine, and a NATO practice arena over the long term.

Plans for hundreds of billions of US taxpayer money administered by Blackrock in the rump state of Ukraine have been in place for over six months at this point,” she continued. Nonetheless, despite the much-advertised counteroffensive having failed so far, what’s left of Ukraine serves NATO’s mission needs for the foreseeable future, Kwiatkowski noted. Ukraine still remains nothing short of being a “testing grounds” for the US military-industrial complex and justifies huge future investments in the militarization of Europe, according to the ex-Pentagon analyst. “I think we’re going to see a crescendo or some kind of, I don’t know whether they’re going to cease operations, but we think at the end of July, August, there’s going to be a new phase in this conflict,” Vallely said.

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“Ukraine is no longer a sovereign country. They don’t have any money. They have no weapons. They can only fight because we in the West support them.”

Europe Must Break Out Of Its War Psychosis – Hungary (RT)

Europe is moving closer to “catastrophe in every sense,” Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto declared on Monday, before extending Budapest’s veto on EU arms transfers to Ukraine. “Europe is moving closer to a catastrophe – in every sense, unfortunately,” Szijjarto wrote on Facebook before meeting with EU foreign ministers in Luxembourg on Monday. “Now even bigger trouble could be prevented and many thousands of lives could be saved,” he continued, “but to do this one would have to break out of the war psychosis.” “I have no illusions that this will happen at the meeting of the EU Foreign Ministers in Luxembourg today,” he concluded. Szijjarto’s prediction played out on Monday. After an address by Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmitry Kuleba, the bloc’s top diplomats voted to increase their joint weapons fund for Ukraine by an additional €3.5 billion ($3.85 billion).

Known as the ‘European Peace Facility’ (EPF), the fund is a €5.6 billion ($6.08 billion) purse that the bloc uses to finance foreign militaries and reimburse its own members who send arms to foreign conflicts. Before the conflict in Ukraine, the ‘Peace Facility’ had only been used to supply non-lethal equipment to Georgia, Mali, Moldova, Mozambique, and Ukraine, for a total of less than $125 million. While the EPF’s ceiling will be increased, Szijjarto confirmed on Monday that Hungary will maintain its veto on the latest €500 million ($546 million) tranche of arms from the fund for another month. Budapest is currently blocking the transfer of EU weapons to Ukraine due to Kiev’s blacklisting of Hungarian companies doing business in Russia.

Szijjarto and Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban have both repeatedly called for a ceasefire and peace deal in Ukraine, while insisting that anti-Russia sanctions hurt Europe more than they hurt Russia. In an interview with German tabloid Bild on Tuesday, Orban stated that the idea of a Ukrainian victory on the battlefield is “impossible” and that without an immediate ceasefire, Ukraine will “lose a huge amount of wealth and many lives, and unimaginable destruction will occur.” “What really matters is what the Americans want to do,” Orban said, explaining that “Ukraine is no longer a sovereign country. They don’t have any money. They have no weapons. They can only fight because we in the West support them.”

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Can’t find this in the Russian press, other than this in Moscow Times.

“Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov on Wednesday dismissed the report as “speculation” and “gossip..”

Russian General Arrested Following Wagner Mutiny (MT)

Russian General Sergei Surovikin has been arrested, The Moscow Times’ Russian service reported Wednesday, citing two sources close to the Defense Ministry who spoke on the condition of anonymity. The Defense Ministry has yet to comment on the alleged arrest of Surovikin, who has not been seen in public since Saturday, when Wagner Group chief Yevgeny Prigozhin launched an armed rebellion against Russia’s military leadership. “The situation with him was not ‘OK.’ For the authorities. I can’t say anything more,” one of the sources said. According to the second source, the arrest was carried out “in the context of Prigozhin.” “Apparently, he [Surovikin] chose Prigozhin’s side during the uprising, and they’ve gotten him by the balls,” the source said.

When asked about the general’s current whereabouts, the source replied: “We are not even commenting on this information through our internal channels.” Earlier Wednesday, pro-war military blogger Vladimir Romanov said Surovikin was detained Sunday, the day after Prigozhin’s aborted mutiny. Romanov claimed that Surovikin is now being held in Moscow’s Lefortovo detention center. Alexei Venediktov, editor-in-chief of the shuttered Ekho Moskvy radio station, wrote on Telegram that Surovikin has not been in contact with his family for three days and that his guards are not responsive. The New York Times reported Tuesday, citing unnamed U.S. officials, that Surovikin had prior knowledge of Prigozhin’s plan to instigate a rebellion against Russia’s military leadership.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov on Wednesday dismissed the report as “speculation” and “gossip,” suggesting that Putin had not given in to Prigozhin’s demands for an imminent reshuffle of the Russian military’s top brass. Wagner’s uprising set off Russia’s most serious security crisis in decades before Prigozhin agreed to stand down Saturday night in exchange for immunity in exile, as part of a deal brokered by Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko. Surovikin commanded Russia’s forces in Ukraine for three months between October 2022 and January 2023 until he was replaced by Chief of the General Staff Valery Gerasimov.

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“..we should reward the cheapest, most efficient energy sources,” which he “generally” feels to be renewables..”

RFK Jr: Bill Gates, WEF Use Climate Narrative For Totalitarian Controls (JTN)

Robert F. Kennedy Jr., who is running for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2024, didn’t mince words when discussing certain “elites” like Bill Gates and leaders of the World Economic Forum (WEF), whom he accused of using the “climate narrative” to gain “top-down totalitarian controls” of societies. Kennedy made his remarks in a Tuesday “Virtual Health Policy Roundtable” on Zoom, which featured several doctors and others Kennedy described as “critics of prevailing health policy.” During the round table, Kennedy was asked how he would ease the minds of the next generation surrounding climate change, to which he responded by criticizing those he views as responsible for the climate hysteria.


“I think that the climate narrative has been hijacked by the World Economic Forum and by Bill Gates,” Kennedy said. “Crises are used by elites within societies to consolidate their power, to diminish democracy, to constrict civil rights and human rights, and to impose top-down totalitarian controls.” “I think the climate crisis is being used in that way by those people,” he added. Kennedy proceeded to offer his solution to climate issues. “My approach to climate has always been a free market approach… we should use marketplace rules rather than top-down controls, we should reward the cheapest, most efficient energy sources,” which he “generally” feels to be renewables. He then said he doesn’t try “scaring people” with CO2 emissions but has focused on “getting off of coal.”

RFK

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Not sure why this happened the way it did.

Pfizer Vaccine Batches in the EU Were Placebos, Say Scientists (DS)

Scientists have uncovered startling evidence that a substantial portion of the batches of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine deployed in the European Union may in fact have consisted of placebos – and that the German regulator knew this and did not subject them to quality-control testing. The scientists, Dr. Gerald Dyker, Professor of Organic Chemistry at the Ruhr University Bochum, and Dr. Jörg Matysik, Professor of Analytical Chemistry at the University of Leipzig, are part of a group of five German-speaking scientists who have been publicly raising questions about the quality and safety of the BioNTech vaccine (as it is known in Germany) for the last year and a half. They recently appeared on the Punkt.Preradovic online programme of the German journalist Milena Preradovic to discuss batch variability. Their starting point was the recent Danish study showing enormous variation in the adverse events associated with different batches of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, or BNT162b2 per its scientific codename. The below figure from the Danish study illustrates this variation.

It shows that the batches used in Denmark, which are represented by the points in the graph, essentially break down into three groups. The ‘green batches’ clustered around the green line have a moderate or moderately-high level of adverse events associated with them. In the discussion with Preradovic, Gerald Dyker takes the example of the green point furthest to the right. As he explains, it represents the batch that was the used the most in Denmark, with somewhat over 800,000 doses having been administered. These 800,000 doses are associated with around 2,000 suspected adverse events, which gives a reporting rate of one suspected adverse event per approximately 400 doses. As Dyker puts it, “That’s not a small amount if we compare to what we know otherwise from influenza vaccines.” According to Dyker’s calculation, the green batches account for more than 60% of the Danish sample.

There are then the ‘blue batches’ clustered around the blue line, which are obviously associated with an extraordinarily high level of adverse events. As Dyker notes, no more than 80,000 doses of any of the blue batches were administered in Denmark – suggesting that these especially bad batches may perhaps have been quietly pulled from the market by public health authorities. Nonetheless, these batches had as many as 8,000 suspected adverse events associated with them. Eight thousand out of 80,000 doses would give a reporting rate of one suspected adverse event for every 10 doses – and Dyker notes that some of the blue batches are indeed associated with a reporting rate of as high as one suspected adverse event for every six doses! On Dyker’s calculation, the blue batches represent less than 5% of the total number of doses included in the Danish study.

Nonetheless, they are associated with nearly 50% of the 579 deaths recorded in the sample. Finally, we have the ‘yellow batches’ clustered around the yellow line, which, as can be seen above, barely gets off the x-axis. On Dyker’s calculation, the yellow batches represent around 30% of the total. Dyker notes that they include batches comprising some 200,000 administered doses which are associated with literally zero suspected adverse events. As Dyker puts it, “malicious” observers might note that “this is how placebos would look”. And malicious observers might be right. For Dyker and Matysik compared the batch numbers contained in the Danish study with publicly available information on the batches approved for release, and they made the startling discovery that almost none of the harmless batches, unlike the very-bad and not-so-bad batches, appear to have been subject to any quality-control testing at all.

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“This was organized crime. There’s no other way to define it,”

Comer: Overseas Payments To Biden Family Could Exceed $40M (NYP)

Members of President Biden’s family may have accepted in excess of $40 million from foreign nationals in exchange for favorable policy decisions, House Oversight Committee Chairman James Comer suggested Wednesday. The Kentucky Republican said that his panel has identified “six specific policy decisions” where Biden, 80, took actions that indicate he may have been “compromised,” during an appearance on John Catsimatidis’ “Cats & Cosby Show” on WABC 770 Wednesday. Comer noted that of the six policy decisions, four of them “were made while Joe Biden was president early on — [where] we cannot come to any other conclusion as to why these decisions were made, other than the fact that this president is compromised.” “This was organized crime. There’s no other way to define it,” Comer alleged.

The Oversight Committee chairman explained that as recently as “in the last five days” his panel has obtained banking statements and suspicious activity reports that show “more bank accounts, more shell companies and more Bidens” being involved in the family’s overseas influence peddling scheme. “We’re going to try to determine how much money the Bidens took, and what role Joe Biden played in all of this … It’s a huge puzzle,” Comer said of the GOP-led committee’s investigation. “Around 30 to 40 different banks, and about that many different shell companies. This is an organized attempt by the Biden family to hide the source of money going into these shell companies, and to distract from the IRS so they wouldn’t have to pay taxes on it. And that’s exactly what the IRS whistleblowers alleged in the transcribed interview with the Ways and Means Committee — that the Biden family never paid money on any of these wires that came into these shell companies,” he added.

IRS whistleblower Gary Shapely told Fox News host Bret Baier on Wednesday that in 2017 and 2018 alone, first son Hunter Biden ducked a $1.2 million tax bill, and that there is likely hundreds of thousands of dollars more in income from previous years that he failed to report. “I mean to this day, there’s still around $400,000 of unreported income from Burisma [Holdings] in 2014,” Shapley said. “Hunter Biden was told by his partner, Eric Schwerin, that he needed to amend his returns, and he never did.” Comer told Catsimatidis that he’s “confident” his investigation will prove the Biden family raked in “at least $17 million” from overseas, but that the “transactions could exceed $40 million-plus.”

Shapley

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Garland should testify before the House. Simple.

New Source in Hunter Biden Probe Points Finger at AG Garland (Sp.)

The New York Times has revealed that it had a new source confirming an IRS whistleblower’s claim about the Justice Department’s meddling in the Hunter Biden probe. While the US mainstream press has a record of ignoring reports concerning alleged misdeeds by the president and the first son, the NYT has claimed it has a source backing some of accusations voiced by IRS supervisory agent-turned whistleblower Gary Shapley. One of Shapley’s bombshell claims is that US Attorney David Weiss – assigned to conduct an investigation into Hunter Biden’s alleged tax crimes – was reportedly told by the DoJ that he could not bring charges against Hunter in California and Washington DC. Shapley’s former subordinate, who came forward as a second IRS whistleblower, made the same claim.

This story runs contrary to Attorney General Merrick Garland’s earlier assertions to the US Congress that Weiss has his hands untied when it comes to the Hunter probe in various state jurisdictions. Back in April, the IRS whistleblower placed emphasis on a false testimony to Congress made by a “senior political appointee.” Later, the New York Post reported that Garland was the appointee whose sworn testimony to congress is being challenged. Garland repeatedly denied having thrown any sand in Weiss’s gears. The attorney general even offered to ask Weiss himself to comment on the matter. “As I said at the outset, Mr. Weiss, who was appointed by President Trump as the US attorney in Delaware and assigned this matter during the previous administration, would be permitted to continue his investigation and to make a decision to prosecute any way in which he wanted to and in any district in which he wanted to,” Garland told reporters last week.

“Mr. Weiss has since sent a letter to the House Judiciary Committee confirming that he had that authority. He was given complete authority to make all decisions on his own behalf.” However, the US mainstream newspaper has recently confirmed that Weiss indeed complained about being rebuffed by justice department officials. “In mid-2022, Mr. Weiss reached out to the top federal prosecutor in Washington, Matthew Graves, to ask his office to pursue charges and was rebuffed, according to Mr. Shapley’s testimony,” the newspaper wrote on Tuesday. “A similar request to prosecutors in the Central District of California, which includes Los Angeles, was also rejected, Mr. Shapley testified.

A second former IRS official, who has not been identified, told House Republicans the same story. That episode was confirmed independently to The New York Times by a person with knowledge of the situation.” US conservative outlets have drawn attention to the fact that the newspaper hid this very important piece of information concerning not just Hunter Biden but also AG Merrick Garland in the 21st paragraph of its lengthy report.


Shapley’s colleague, IRS whistleblower 2, the lead case agent, itemized the money precisely in his testimony

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“..and demands on an honest investigation and an honest prosecution as well.”

Pressure Grows On Judge To Reject Hunter Biden Plea Deal (JTN)

Pressure is growing in congressional, legal and media circles for the federal judge in the Hunter Biden case to reject a plea deal that would spare the first son from serving prison time after evidence has emerged from two IRS whistleblowers that a more serious criminal tax case was sabotaged by the Justice Department. “I don’t understand how any judge could bless this plea agreement now that all of this evidence of obstruction and DOJ and FBI wrongdoing has surfaced,” Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., told Just the News. “So I hope this judge does reject this, and then insists and demands on an honest investigation and an honest prosecution as well.”

Johnson, who with Sen. Charles Grassley led a two year probe into Hunter Biden’s overseas business dealings, was reacting to testimony and evidence from IRS supervisory agent Gary Shapley and another whistleblower that federal prosecutors blocked search warrants, interviews and more serious criminal charges. Shapley first made the allegations to the Justice Department inspector general and the House Ways and Means Committee. And in an interview to be aired Thursday on the John Solomon Reports podcast he detailed how career agents, career prosecutors, the DOJ tax division and lead U.S. Attorney David Weiss supported charging Hunter Biden with felonies alleging tax evasion and avoidance all the way back to 2014 totaling $2.2 million, including failing to pay taxes on $400,000 in income he got from the Ukrainian energy firm Burisma Holdings.

Shapley said President Joe Biden’s son was spared the more serious charges when the U.S. Attorneys in Washington D.C. and Los Angeles – both appointed by Biden – declined Weiss’ request for an indictment and then the statute of limitations on the older alleged offenses were allowed to expire. Hunter Biden has now struck a deal with Weiss to plead guilty to two misdemeanors tax evasion charges from 2017-18 and to enter a probation program that would result in a federal felony gun charge to be dismissed. Hunter Biden, 53, is slated to appear July 26 in federal court in Delaware before U.S. District Court Judge Maryellen Noreika, an appointee of former President Donald Trump.

Famed Harvard law professor emeritus Alan Dershowitz, an unabashed supporter of Joe Biden, agreed there is good reason for Noreika to set aside the plea deal and seek to investigate the whistleblower allegations. He said it was concerning that the whistleblowers’ testimony directly conflicts with Attorney General Merrick Garland’s testimony there was no interference in the probe. “If I were the judge on the Hunter Biden case, I would refuse to accept the plea bargain unless and until Garland and Weiss testify,” Dershowitz told the John Solomon Reports podcast on Tuesday. “What they’ve said is utterly incompatible.”

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Better be quick about replacing her.

Kamala Harris Worst VP in Polling History – NBC (Sp.)

Nearly half of Americans have a negative view of Kamala Harris and only 32% of them have a positive opinion of the US vice president, a new poll by the US’ NBC News broadcaster has revealed. The survey showed that 49% of respondents are critical of Harris, of which 39% have a “very negative view” with respect to the 58-year-old politician. Only 11% said they have a “very positive” opinion of Harris. She received a net negative rating of -17, which NBC News said is “the lowest for any vice president in the poll’s history.” The poll was carried out from June 16 to June 20 with a total of 1,000 respondents participating in the survey. The poll’s margin of error was 3.1 percentage points. For comparison, Harris predecessor Mike Pence’s ratings sat at 34% positive vs. 38% negative (-4%) in October 2019.


Views of Joe Biden were at 34% positive to 33% negative (+1%) when he was Barack Obama’s vice president in December 2010, while then-US Vice President Dick Cheney checked in at 47% positive and 24% negative (+23%) in May 2003. Earlier this year, media reports quoted an unnamed White House official as saying that US President Joe Biden is reportedly growing increasingly annoyed that his second-in-command, who allegedly refuses to take on more responsibility over a fear of potentially “messing up.” “A point of tension in their relationship is that I don’t think that the president sees her as somebody who takes anything off of his plate” due to a “fear of messing up,” the official said. The US vice president, who adheres to a hawkish stance on the Ukraine conflict and calls for more hefty military packages, has in particular repeatedly been criticized for sitting on her hands when it comes to tackling the US migration crisis.

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Carvey Spade
https://twitter.com/i/status/1674210937086046209

Wrasse

 

 

Baby rhino
https://twitter.com/i/status/1673803056968867842

 

 

Stop it
https://twitter.com/i/status/1674143751525081089

 

 

 

 

P&K
https://twitter.com/i/status/1674026415635808256

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Jun 152023
 


Georgia O’Keeffe New York Street with Moon 1925

 

Ukraine Lost Some 7,500 People on Contact Line Since June 4 – Russian MoD (Sp.)
House Dems Refuse To Say Whether They Support Cluster Bombs For Ukraine (IC)
US Knew Ukraine Planned To Destroy Kakhovka Dam – Moscow (RT)
Hungary Hope For Trump’s Return To White House To Bring Peace To Ukraine (TASS)
US, Chinese FM’s Phone Call Could Be Precondition for Future Dialogue (Sp.)
West Very Afraid New, Large-Scale War Will Break Out – Lukashenko (TASS)
Moscow Offered To ‘Lease’ Crimea From Kiev – Lukashenko (RT)
How African Leaders Decided To Broker Peace Between Russia And Ukraine (Az.)
Erdogan Nixes Sweden’s NATO Bid (Cradle)
Western Sanctions Backfired – US Analyst (RT)
The Biden Family Multi-Million Dollar Crime Spree (GP)
Burisma Energy Accountant, Who Exposed Biden Bribery Scheme Found Dead (TPV)
$10M Magically Appeared In Biden 2017 Tax Return; House GOP Investigating (TPN)
EU Regulators Seek Breakup Of Google Ad Business Over “Illegal” Practices (ZH)
Confidential Pfizer Document Shows 1.6 Million Adverse Events (Horowitz)

 

 

 

 

600 pages
https://twitter.com/i/status/1669021253594750983

 

 

Nap Macgregor

 

 

 

 

RT trolling

 

 

House Walensky

 

 

 

 

Trump 77th

 

 

Happy BDay

 

 

Capsized refugee boat off Greek coast yesterday. 79 dead, hundreds missing.

Sachs
https://twitter.com/i/status/1669016814754443266

 

 

Pepe Escobar @RealPepeEscobar
R.I.P. UKRAINE 1/2
Last month, hush hush, the Kiev gang SOLD Ukraine to $8.5 trillion-worth BlackRock. The deal was sealed by the Government of Ukraine and BlackRock’s VP Philipp Hildebrand. They will set up a Ukrainian Development Fund (UDF) for “reconstruction”.

R.I.P. UKRAINE 2/2
“Reconstruction” of Ukraine by BlackRock will focus on energy, infrastructure, agriculture, industry and IT. ALL remaining valuable assets in rump Ukraine will be gobbled up – from Metinvest and DTEK (energy) to Naftogaz, Ukrainian Railways and Ukrenergo.

 

 

 

 

Add in the Russian deaths and that’s over 1,000 a day. For what?

Ukraine Lost Some 7,500 People on Contact Line Since June 4 – Russian MoD (Sp.)

Ukrainian troops have lost about 7,500 military both killed and injured on the line of contact alone since June 4, the Russian Defense Ministry said on Wednesday. “In total, since June 4, the Ukrainian armed forces have lost about 7,500 people killed and wounded on the line of contact alone, not counting the dead military personnel as a result of the use of Russian long-range precision weapons and aviation in the depths of Ukrainian territory,” the ministry said in a statement. Over the past day, Ukraine unsuccessfully conducted offensives in the South Donetsk, Zaporozhye and Donetsk directions, continuing to suffer losses, the ministry said. Losses of the Ukrainian army in the Donetsk direction exceeded 205 military and 10 pieces of equipment over the past day, the ministry said.

In the Donetsk direction near the settlements of Pervomaiskoe and Petrovskoe, Russia successfully repulsed two enemy attacks, the ministry said in a statement. “During the fighting, the losses of Ukrainian troops amounted to more than 205 military personnel, two armored combat vehicles, seven vehicles, and two D-20 howitzers,” the ministry said. Near the Vremevka ledge, Russia also repelled two attacks, the ministry said, adding that Ukraine lost 11 armored vehicles, including four tanks. Ukraine lost more than 800 soldiers and 20 tanks in the South Donetsk and Zaporozhye directions in the past day, the ministry said. “In total, in the past day, enemy losses in the South Donetsk and Zaporozhye directions amounted to more than 800 Ukrainian military, 20 tanks, four infantry fighting vehicles, 15 armored combat vehicles, two US-made M777 artillery systems, Msta-B and D-30 howitzers, as well as a Grad multiple rocket launcher combat vehicle,” the ministry said.

Russian aviation prevented the attack of Ukrainian assault units in the Zaporozhye direction near the settlement of Zherebyanky, the ministry added. “[On Tuesday night], the Russian armed forces carried out group strikes with sea and air-based long-range high-precision weapons at places of concentration of reserves of the Ukrainian armed forces and foreign mercenaries, as well as warehouses of ammunition, weapons and military equipment of foreign production,” the ministry said in a statement, adding that all assigned objects are hit. The Russian armed forces carried out missile strikes on Ukrainian reserves, foreign mercenaries, as well as warehouses of foreign-made equipment over the past 24 hours, the Russian Defense Ministry said on Wednesday.

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War criminals. 1,000 deaths a day is not enough.

House Dems Refuse To Say Whether They Support Cluster Bombs For Ukraine (IC)

Rep. Adam Smith, the top Democrat on the House Armed Services Committee, said recently that he is keeping the door open to sending cluster munitions — widely banned around the world due to their track record of maiming and killing civilians — to Ukraine. In a May interview with Politico, Smith said that the advantage of cluster munitions “is we have a lot of them. To the extent that we’re unable to provide sufficient ammo in other areas, they could certainly fill that gap.” He also framed the munitions as a potential way to end a conflict with no end in sight. “If our cluster munitions could bring the war to a conclusion sooner, it’s something I’m open to,” Smith said. This followed comments Smith made a week earlier at a Council on Foreign Relations event where he similarly described the pros and cons of sending cluster munitions to Ukraine.

Ukraine has asked the United States to provide it with cluster bombs, which Russian troops have deployed against Ukrainian civilians and which Ukraine has reportedly used as well. The Biden administration has expressed concerns about Ukraine’s requests, but it also hasn’t rejected them outright — and U.S. lawmakers continue to press the administration to provide the weapons. While most of those calls have come from Republicans, Smith’s openness to the idea, amid a general bipartisan consensus on sending arms to Ukraine, shows that congressional pressure is ramping up.

The administration seems unlikely to approve sending cluster munitions to Ukraine, but that the idea is even on the table has raised concerns among international security advocates about the disintegration of humanitarian law and the potential for the U.S. to further erode standing norms of civilian protection. “As long as the administration holds the line, keeping with the approach that so many of our NATO allies and others in the global community takes, that will be positive,” said Jeff Abramson, senior fellow at the Arms Control Association. “It’s frustrating that much of what you’re hearing from [Capitol Hill] is a call for sending cluster munitions. That Representative Smith did not fully cut off the possibility is also wrongheaded. These weapons have not been used by the United States in more than a decade.”

[..] The United States has not used cluster munitions since 2009, when it used the weapons during a strike in Yemen, and cluster munitions have not been produced in the U.S. since the manufacturer Textron shut down production in 2016. Yet the U.S. military maintains massive stockpiles of them. Under a 2017 policy directive, the U.S. military is still authorized to use weapons containing submunitions, in sharp contrast to the dozens of countries that have banned them. The international community has entrenched norms against the use of cluster munitions, said Cesar Jaramillo, executive director at Project Ploughshares, a peace research institute in Canada, namely because they cause indiscriminate harm to civilians and prolong the impacts of war by leaving unexploded munitions. Cluster munitions fracture before impact, sending out a cascade of small bombs that can impact well beyond their intended target.

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And with US weapons too.

US Knew Ukraine Planned To Destroy Kakhovka Dam – Moscow (RT)

Washington was perfectly aware of Kiev’s plan to destroy the Kakhovka dam since US-supplied HIMARS multiple rocket launchers were used in the attack, high-ranking Russian diplomat Konstantin Gavrilov said on Wednesday. HIMARS launchers are “high-precision systems that make use of the US GPS navigation system for targeting,” Gavrilov, who heads Russia’s delegation at the Vienna talks on military security and arms control, said. Any targets picked out by Kiev for these systems are “coordinated with the Americans,” he added. According to the official, Ukrainian forces struck the Kakhovka dam with more than 300 HIMARS missiles over the summer and autumn of 2022. “The Americans knew about it. Yet, they did nothing to prevent the catastrophe,”Gavrilov said.

On Wednesday, Russian officials also presented their estimates of the damage caused by the destruction of the dam. The losses amounted to over 1.2 billion rubles ($14 million), according to the Russian Emergencies Ministry. More than 7,000 people have been evacuated from the risk zone, the ministry added. The dam collapsed last week, leading to both banks of the Dnieper River being flooded and multiple deaths. Moscow and Kiev have since traded accusations over who is to blame for the disaster. Officials in Kiev claimed that Russia blew up the dam to supposedly stop the Ukrainian counteroffensive in the area. However, this idea was dismissed by Russian President Vladimir Putin, who said the local terrain was already extremely unfavorable for an attack even before the incident. He also said that Russia would have had no interest in destroying the dam, as it would spell “severe consequences for those territories that we control and which are Russian.”

Last week, Ukraine slammed Türkiye for suggesting a UN-backed three-party investigation into the incident. Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmitry Kuleba said at that time that he was “sick and tired” of calls to probe events that occurred during the conflict. The Ukrainian envoy to the UN, Sergey Kislitsa, claimed that launching such a probe would be“impossible.” Russian officials said they were not surprised by Kiev’s reaction to the Turkish proposal. Moscow’s ambassador to Washington, Anatoly Antonov, also accused Washington of attempts to “whitewash” Kiev by shifting the blame onto Russia. The envoy stated that Ukraine’s “patrons” in Washington “never criticize Kiev,” but instead approve of all of its actions.

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Nice angle.

Hungary Hope For Trump’s Return To White House To Bring Peace To Ukraine (TASS)

Hungary is pinning its hopes on a comeback by former US President Donald Trump, who could then bring the armed conflict in Ukraine to an end, Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto said. “If President Trump had won the last presidential election here in the United States, this war [in Ukraine] would not have broken out. <…> We do look at his possible return to the White House as a hope for a peaceful future,” the top Hungarian diplomat told Newsmax TV. Szijjarto also wished the former president victory in the 2024 presidential election and a favorable conclusion to all of the lawsuits filed against him. Budapest has repeatedly said that, in its view, not only Ukraine and Russia, but also the US, which is the biggest military and financial backer of the Kiev regime, should engage in peace talks to settle the conflict.

Speaking about Trump, Szijjarto called the politician “a true friend of Hungary” and wished him success in the upcoming lawsuits. “Whenever a conservative leader has a good chance to win an important [presidential] election as [former] President Trump, [who,] as far as we understand, has a good chance to return to the White House, then he or she gets immediately under an enormous attack by the liberal mainstream,” the top diplomat pointed out. Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban earlier openly supported Trump. The US District Court for the Southern District of Florida filed two indictments against the former US president. Specifically, he is charged with mishandling classified documents and falsifying the business records of his company, the Trump Organization.

Orban is one of the few world leaders, if not the only one, to publicly support Trump in connection with the lawsuits filed against him. The Hungarian prime minister has long been a supporter of the former US president and openly wished him success in the last presidential election as the candidate of the Republican Party. At the same time, Orban has had tense relations with the administration of Trump’s Democratic successor, President Joe Biden. The US does not approve of Budapest’s independent stance on a number of international issues, including Ukraine, and Budapest in turn accuses Washington of seeking to interfere in Hungary’s domestic affairs and supporting the political opposition.

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Lukewarm welcome.

US, Chinese FM’s Phone Call Could Be Precondition for Future Dialogue (Sp.)

Chinese Foreign Minister Qin Gang held a telephone conversation with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken on June 14, a Chinese national broadcaster revealed. The conversation occurred ahead of a reported visit by the top American official to the country. According to the report, during the conversation, the Chinese top diplomat highlighted that China-US relations have faced new difficulties and challenges this year, and “whose responsibility (for this) is clear”. He also stressed that the American side should show respect, refrain from meddling in China’s internal affairs, and stop undermining Beijing’s sovereign interests in security and development under the pretext of competition. Wang Yiwei, director of the Institute of International Affairs at Renmin University of China, noted that there has been a shift in the bipartisan consensus in the United States regarding pressure on China.

“Business circles in the United States consider the Chinese market to be very important and call for the economy not to be ‘held hostage’ by politics. They advocate adhering to normal principles of economic development and market principles, and avoiding the formulation of an Indo-Pacific strategy or any other form of ideologization,” the expert said. Moreover, there is still a year to go until the presidential elections in the United States, and Trump, who has already declared that he will immediately stop the conflict between Russia and Ukraine if he wins, could be Biden’s potential rival. According to Wang Yiwei, Biden is currently facing two main points of pressure. “First, the need to seek China’s support on the issue of the Russian-Ukrainian conflict, hoping that China can play an active role. Second, there is the issue of the US economy and the national debt”.

Although the debt ceiling has been raised, the problem is far from being solved, and the United States hopes that China will continue to buy US Treasury bonds. In fact, the economic chaos in the United States is closely related to the disruption of production chains, to which they themselves have contributed, and this has also led to tremendous pressure from American business circles. Against this backdrop, there are hopes in the United States for closer relations with China. However, the American media recently published fake news claiming that “China is building a surveillance base in Cuba (to spy on the US)”. “Considering that Blinken’s previous visit to China was postponed due to the balloon incident, this phone call could become a precondition for future dialogue in order to prevent further ruptures in contacts,” Wang Yiwei noted.

[..] Earlier, several US media outlets reported that Blinken was planning to make his delayed trip to China in the coming days, with an unnamed US official giving June 18 as the tentative date of his arrival in Beijing. The Chinese Foreign Ministry, however, has not confirmed these reports. If Blinken’s trip goes ahead, it will be the first one for a top US diplomat since 2018. Blinken canceled the February trip after the United States accused China of sending spy balloons into US airspace. Beijing has since denied the allegations.

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“..Volodya Zelensky. He is a `hero’ now, touring the globe. He is being kissed, hugged and all that. I thought he was smarter..”

West Very Afraid New, Large-Scale War Will Break Out – Lukashenko (TASS)

Despite its latest steps, the West is very afraid about the possibility of a new large-scale war or a nuclear disaster, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko said in an interview with the 60 Minutes talk show on Rossiya-1 television. “I have met with people playing an important role in this, who make radical, drastic and final decisions in the event of an `if’,’” Lukashenko said. “What they fear most is a nuclear disaster, and they have been sincere about this. They are afraid of using nuclear weapons in Ukraine. It’s only natural,” he added. Minsk does not want things to play out that way either, Lukashenko assured. “We are not seeking that either, and we, too, are afraid. Because this, experts say, could cause a global catastrophe, and this planet may deorbit, if all these weapons explode,” he maintained.


According to Lukashenko, Russia may use nukes, if the enemy invades its territory or if this act of aggression threatens the existence of the state. He urged talks as long as there is an opportunity for them, but the West, he said, has been banning Ukraine from engaging in any. “I am confident and I have it on good information that the overwhelming majority in Ukraine, including the military who has been fighting and getting killed over there, would like to stop this war now,” the Belarusian leader maintained. “But then there are those hyped-up top-level officials led by [Ukrainian President] Volodya Zelensky. He is a `hero’ now, touring the globe. He is being kissed, hugged and all that. I thought he was smarter,” Lukashenko lamented.

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Moscow has flatly denied this.

Moscow Offered To ‘Lease’ Crimea From Kiev – Lukashenko (RT)

Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko has claimed that Russia offered financial compensation to Ukraine for Crimea, when the two nations were engaged in peace talks mediated by Minsk. Speaking to a Russian media outlet on Wednesday, the Belarusian leader said that Russian President Vladimir Putin had shown him a draft document which was provisionally accepted by Moscow and Kiev. The proposed treaty was “fine” and included “some kind of long-term lease” regarding Crimea, Lukashenko stated. “It was a good process, but [the Ukrainians] dropped out of it,” he added. Belarus served as a mediator between Russia and Ukraine for years, and hosted talks in 2014 and 2015 which resulted in the signing of the so-called Minsk agreements, the UN-endorsed roadmap for Kiev’s reconciliation with Donbass.

After open hostilities broke out last year, several rounds of peace negotiations were held in Belarus, but talks later moved to Istanbul. The Türkiye-based round of discussions produced a draft agreement under which Kiev pledged to become a neutral state in exchange for security guarantees. However, it made a U-turn soon after, which Moscow described as Ukraine following a US order to continue fighting. Before Crimea rejected the 2014 armed coup in Kiev and voted in a referendum to rejoin Russia, Moscow paid Kiev an annual lease to use Sevastopol as the home base of its Black Sea Fleet. It was last renewed in 2010, when Moscow offered a gas price discount for the extension. With Crimea’s status changing, the Russian government declared the treaty null and void.

In the interview, Lukashenko claimed that the Minsk agreements had been negotiated in bad faith by Kiev and its backers, who used them to buy time for a military buildup in Ukraine. The resulting lack of trust poses a challenge for all future talks, he suggested, before reiterating his vision on how to stop hostilities. “If we agree to a peace process, the war stops, no movements, no tanks, no troops. If anyone is redeployed, I believe we should use nuclear weapons. That is the only way we can talk to them,” Lukashenko said of Ukraine and its backers. Minsk is a close Russian ally and has allowed the use of its territory for the military operation against Ukraine. In March, Russia announced that it would station some of its tactical nuclear weapons in Belarus at Lukashenko’s request.

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Good thing they’re finding their voice.

How African Leaders Decided To Broker Peace Between Russia And Ukraine (Az.)

In a bold diplomatic move, seven African heads of state are preparing to embark on a journey to Ukraine and Russia later this week, as they bid to engage their counterparts in both countries in peace talks. Coordinated by the Brazzaville Foundation, a renowned non-governmental organization specializing in conflict resolution, the African Peace Initiative delegation is scheduled to meet Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky in Kiev on June 16, followed by a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in St. Petersburg the next day. South African President Cyril Ramaphosa first announced the African peace plan, now aptly titled ‘The Road to Peace’, on May 16. Although the details of the initiative have not been made public, Ramaphosa said that the team will meet with Putin and Zelensky to discuss how to resolve the conflict in Ukraine.

Mzuvukile Jeff Maqetuka, South Africa’s ambassador to Russia, told RT that the initiative differs from others in that the leaders are not presenting pre-drawn proposals. He stated that they would first sit down with their counterparts from Russia and Ukraine and discuss what caused the conflict. The mission has strategically drawn leaders from the continent’s five regions: southern, northern, central, eastern, and western. Senegalese President Macky Sall will represent West Africa, after leading the first African Union (AU) mission to Russia to plead for peace on the continent’s behalf at the start of the conflict in 2022. The southern region will be led by South Africa’s Ramaphosa and Zambia’s Hakainde Hichilema, while Egypt’s Abdel Fattah El-Sisi will represent North Africa. Denis Sassou Nguesso of Central Africa’s Congo will also be making the trip, while Azali Assoumani of Comoros, who serves as president of the African Union, will represent the east of the continent alongside Uganda’s Yoweri Museveni.

These countries have all declared their non-aligned positions in the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, refusing to make a unilateral decision. Vladimir Antwi-Danso, director of academic affairs at the Ghana Armed Forces Command and Staff College, told RT that the mission is significant because it demonstrates that Africa can be proactive in intervening in global affairs. He emphasized that Africa has long taken a backseat to the international community, including the US, regarding action in conflicts that directly affect the continent. Ramaphosa, who is leading the initiative, has described the Ukraine conflict as “devastating,” adding that Africa is also suffering greatly as a result of the fighting. Congolese President Denis Sassou Nguesso said on Monday that Africa cannot “remain silent” because everyone is “suffering” the consequences.

Philani Mthembu, executive director at the Institute for Global Dialogue, believes the African leaders are trying to shield the continent from Western pressure to pick a side in the conflict, while also seeking to avoid the division that the crisis could cause within the African Union. South Africa, which has maintained a non-aligned stance, has also been pressed to take sides. Its ties with Russia as a BRICS member have led to accusations that the country has backed Moscow. Meanwhile, Confidence Isaiah-MacHarry, a security analyst at SBM Intelligence in Nigeria, said “the African attempt at peace efforts is an important pointer to the fact that Russia is still not isolated.”

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Hungary’s also a hold-out.

Erdogan Nixes Sweden’s NATO Bid (Cradle)

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has shot down the notion of Sweden joining the US-led security alliance NATO during next month’s Vilnius summit. According to Erdogan, the Nordic state has failed to uphold Ankara’s requests, as it recently permitted supporters of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) to demonstrate on the streets of Stockholm. Earlier this week, while on his way to Azerbaijan, the Turkish president told journalists that “terrorists” were allowed to protest, despite the fact that Stockholm said it was dedicated to meeting Ankara’s requirements to join NATO. These requirements involved extraditing members and supporters of the PKK, which the Turkish government considers “terrorists” due to its long-standing rivalry with Kurdish militants in Syria and Iraq.

When asked about NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, an integral figure in pushing Sweden’s NATO bid, Erdogan remarked: “While Stoltenberg was expressing these views to us, unfortunately, at that time, terrorists were demonstrating in the streets again in Sweden,” adding that “now, we cannot approach this work positively within this table.” The presence of individuals linked to the PKK has hindered Sweden’s ability to acquire NATO membership following the launch of Russia’s military operation in Ukraine, which broke Sweden and Finland’s neutrality after decades of refraining from joining any security bloc. Despite Ankara’s continued block of Sweden’s ascension, Turkiye officially granted Finland eligibility to join NATO at the end of March.

Turkiye remains indecisive about Sweden’s proposal, claiming Swedish officials have not taken the necessary measures to crack down internally on members of the PKK and allied Kurdish militia groups, many of whom continue to reside in Stockholm. Earlier this year, a far-right Swedish politician burned several copies of the Quran, which further inflamed tensions. Swedish Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson described the act as “extremely serious” and an attempt to sabotage the nation’s NATO application.

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Day two of the St. Petersburg Economic Forum (SPIEF) today. Over 17,000 participants from 130 countries.. What boycott?

Western Sanctions Backfired – US Analyst (RT)

The attempts by the US and its allies to isolate Russia have failed, while the many rounds of sanctions havebackfired and not crippled the country’s economy as intended, American political analyst and car-industry veteran Douglas Andrew Littleton told RT on the sidelines of the St. Petersburg Economic Forum (SPIEF). Littleton added that he was disappointed with his government’s sanctions policy against Moscow. “I think what happened with the sanctions it’s backfiring on the West, and especially on America, in my humble opinion,” the analyst said. “I’m happy that Russia has been able to bypass and skirt the sanctions in so many ways with their friends and allies,” he added.


The US, EU, and allies have hit Russia with numerous rounds of unprecedented sanctions since the launch of Moscow’s military operation in Ukraine. The penalties have affected entire sectors of the Russian economy, as well as businesses and individuals, including President Vladimir Putin. Discussing how the Russian economy has handled the Western pressure, Littleton said he believes that what Russia has been able to accomplish is “absolutely fantastic.” When asked about his impression of the St. Petersburg forum, he said: “I am in shock how big this forum is but very pleased to be here.” Over 17,000 participants from 130 countries have reportedly attended the SPIEF, which kicked off on Wednesday. Over the course of the four-day event, participants will discuss key issues related to the Russian and global economy.

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“..she wanted to testify, but to testify she wanted to be in the Witness Protection program. And she had four colleagues of hers who were willing to testify and support her.”

The Biden Family Multi-Million Dollar Crime Spree (GP)

As TGP reported on Tuesday — there are several eye witnesses with over a dozen audio recordings and numerous bank receipts that detail the Biden Crime Family’s illegal bribery payments. On Saturday America’s Mayor Rudy Giuliani told Rita Cosby on Newsmax that he has a high-level witness who is the former chief accountant at Burisma who is willing to testify on the Biden crimes. She even has the Biden bank account transactions. She has the receipts! Rudy Giuliani: It’s extraordinary. I gave them one witness that any investigator would jump through hoops to go to. Gave them a witness who is a woman who was the chief accountant at this crooked company, Burisma. She was the wife of the former owner who died under suspicious circumstances. And, she was willing to give up all of the offshore bank accounts, including the Bidens’ accounts. She supervised the transfer of a lot more cash to the Bidens and other crooked politicians for Burisma.


On Monday Rudy Giuliani shared more details with the War Room audience. Rudy’s Burisma witness had FOUR COLLEAGUES willing to testify! Rudy Giuliani: “There was one very extraordinary piece of evidence. We had a woman in Ukraine who was the chief accountant for Burisma, the wife of the former partner of Mycola Zlochevsky who owned Burisma and is the major crook who was paying off the Bidens. And she wanted to turn she wanted to testify, but to testify she wanted to be in the Witness Protection program. And she had four colleagues of hers who were willing to testify and support her. She claimed that over an eight year period she supervised all of the offshore illegal bank accounts. All the money laundering went through her. Now, we weren’t sure she was telling the truth but we did have one transaction that I had gotten very early of a complete money laundering transaction for $14 million, some of which went through to Joe Biden with an indication that Joe got $900,000 of it and his family got a total of about 3 million of it.”

Watters
https://twitter.com/i/status/1669008669072142337

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And there goes Giuliani’s witness… The DOJ wanted nothing to do with her.

Burisma Energy Accountant Who Exposed Biden Bribery Scheme Found Dead (TPV)

The chief accountant at Ukraine’s Burisma Energy, who offered to provide US authorities with damning evidence regarding financial crimes involving Joe and Hunter Biden, has been found dead before she could testify. The Burisma whistleblower, who has been identified as the wife of the former Burisma owner Mykola Lisin, who also died in suspicious circumstances during the years of the Obama administration when vice president Joe Biden and his son Hunter were active in Ukraine. Giuliani discussed the fate of the now-deceased whistleblower during an interview on Newsmax’s “Saturday Report” with Rita Cosby. According to Giuliani, who first brought to light Hunter Biden’s notorious “Laptop from Hell”, the whistleblower was the chief accountant at Burisma, the notoriously corrupt Ukrainian energy company.

During Joe Biden’s tenure as vice president under Obama, Burisma compensated Hunter with tens of thousands of dollars per month for his position on the company’s board, despite his complete lack of experience in the energy sector. During that period, then-Vice President Biden withheld U.S. assistance to Ukraine as a means of pressuring the government to dismiss Viktor Shokin, a senior prosecutor who was investigating Burisma and its owner for fraudulent activities. Giuliani, who previously served as President Donald Trump’s attorney, says the whistleblower offered to give a U.S. attorney highly compromising financial information about the Bidens. However, Giuliani says US authorities did everything they could to ignore her, bouncing her case around various offices, in an attempt to make her go away.

He revealed that the Pittsburgh attorney general had initially been investigating the case. But the investigation was later transferred to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Delaware, under former U.S. Attorney General Bill Barr. Giuliani claims the Delaware office buried the case, despite the whistleblower being under threat of death. He says the whistleblower had evidence that included offshore bank account information that showed millions of dollars in bribes flowing to the Biden family and “other crooked politicians.” Despite the explosive nature of the evidence, Giuliani says prosecutors stonewalled the case and she died suddenly before she could testify. And now the mainstream media are refusing to acknowledge her existence.

“Well, of course, that’s the most ridiculous, idiotic statement to make on a day in which we find out that the Bidens took a $10 million bribe from a Ukrainian Mykola Zlochevsky, which I could have told you, you know, and did tell [the DOJ] three years ago,” Giuliani told Newsmax. “And they followed up on none of the evidence I gave them. They were hoping that people would disappear or die. It’s extraordinary.”

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Link to China?!

$10M Magically Appeared In Biden 2017 Tax Return; House GOP Investigating (TPN)

House Republicans are demanding increased transparency from President Joe Biden on his personal tax returns after an investigation found one of his corporate entities reported nearly $10 million in revenue without detailing the sources. The president’s critics believe the sudden influx of money may be related to allegations of bribery against the president. CelticCapri Corp, an S-corporation for the president, was not listed on the president’s personal tax returns or campaign website, raising eyebrows as to why the 46th president would conceal such a large income source from the public. While it is common to not list corporate revenue on a personal income statement, politicians running for national office typically disclose all sources of income in an attempt to appear as transparent as possible.

According to Breitbart, the conservative Federalist Society took issue with a 2020 article by USA Today which attempted to hold water for the president by claiming he earned “$15.6 million … from speaking fees and book deals” between 2017 and 2019 and that “more than $10 million of that total income was profits from Biden’s memoir ‘Promise Me, Dad’ and $3 million in profits from Jill Biden’s book.” Following the citations within the USA Today article led readers to no details on the S-corporation, creating what the Federal Society referred to as a “smokescreen.” House Republicans believe they may have found a bone to pick as they race to uncover the truth behind testimony from an FBI informant that President Biden took $5 million in bribes from a Ukrainian official to assist in the firing of another official and easing the path for his son Hunter Biden to conduct business operations in the country.

Members of the Republican caucus told Breitbart that the latest lack of transparency from the president is deeply concerning. “The President seems to find selling out our country funny. We don’t,” said Rep. Nancy Mace (R-SC). “If he’s serious about proving our allegations wrong he should release his and his family’s unredacted bank records and show the American people where all this money is coming from. The FBI can’t protect him forever.” Rep. Eli Crane (R-AZ), a successful businessman in his own right, told Breitbart News Joe Biden should come clean about the money in lieu of the alleged pay-for-pay scheme.

“The fact that there are credible claims signaling that a foreign national bribed the President of the United States with cash in exchange for influence over U.S. policy decisions is appalling. The American people deserve to know who paid the Bidens and what exactly they were paid for,” he said. “Now that we know there are recordings of conversations Joe Biden and his degenerate son had with a Burisma executive, it’s becoming more and more obvious how the indictment of President Trump is meant to be a distraction,” Crane added. “It would shock no one in this town if Joe Biden received millions of dollars from selling out the country in a bribery scheme and then hid that money in shady shell companies.”

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Yeah, break up that monopoly. It’s a disgrace.

EU Regulators Seek Breakup Of Google Ad Business Over “Illegal” Practices (ZH)

On Wednesday, European Union regulators informed Google that it “breached EU antitrust rules by distorting competition in the advertising technology industry.” Regulators seek to break up the US multinational technology company’s advertising empire. The European Commission, the European Union’s antitrust regulator, said, “Google abused its dominant positions” in the buying and selling of online ads across third-party apps and websites. ] The commission said that its preliminary view is Google must sell segments of its ad business to resolve the “inherent conflicts of interest” in digital advertising. However, there was no mention of what was to be sold. Regulators said Google “holds a dominant position” on “both sides of the market with its publisher ad server and with its ad-buying tools.” “The Commission preliminarily finds that, in this particular case, a behavioural remedy is likely to be ineffective to prevent the risk that Google continues such self-preferencing conducts or engages in new ones.

“Google is active on both sides of the market with its publisher ad server and with its ad buying tools and holds a dominant position on both ends. Furthermore, it operates the largest ad exchange. This leads to a situation of inherent conflicts of interest for Google. The Commission’s preliminary view is therefore that only the mandatory divestment by Google of part of its services would address its competition concerns.” The EU’s announcement comes months after the US Justice Department and eight states filed a lawsuit over Google’s ad business, claiming it illegally monopolizes the online ad market. This is the second US antitrust suit federal authorities have brought against the company’s ad empire.

“For 15 years, Google has pursued a course of anticompetitive conduct that has allowed it to halt the rise of rival technologies, manipulate auction mechanics, to insulate itself from competition, and force advertisers and publishers to use its tools,” Attorney General Merrick Garland wrote in a press release in January. The outcome of these three cases could have widespread implications for Google’s parent company, Alphabet, which recorded $60 billion in profit last year from advertising.

“So Google is present at almost all levels of the so-called adtech supply chain. Our preliminary concern is that Google may have used its market position to favour its own intermediation services. Not only did this possibly harm Google’s competitors but also publishers’ interests, while also increasing advertisers’ costs. If confirmed, Google’s practices would be illegal under our competition rules,” Margrethe Vestager, the executive vice president of the European Commission who oversees digital and competition policy, said in a statement. Earlier this week, The Wall Street Journal reported the EU was considering ordering a breakup of Google’s ad-tech business. And with pressure on both sides of the Atlantic, the walls are closing in on Google’s ad business.

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Painful at best.

Confidential Pfizer Document Shows 1.6 Million Adverse Events (Horowitz)

Over 10,000 categories of nearly 1.6 million adverse events – many of them serious and debilitating – brought to you by Pfizer! You might not have heard it in the news, but in recent months, Pfizer’s pharmacovigilance documents requested by the European Union’s drug regulator, the European Medicines Agency, have been released. They show that Pfizer knew about a sickening level of injury early on. An August 2022 document shows that the company already had observed the following scope of vaccine injury: • 508,351 individual case reports of adverse events containing 1,597,673 events; • One-third of the AEs were classified as serious, well above the standard for safety signals usually pegged at 15%; • Women reported AEs at three times the rate of men; • 60% of cases were reported with either “outcome unknown” or “not recovered,” so many of the injuries were not transient; • Highest number of cases occurred in the 31-50 year age group, and 92% did not have any comorbidities, which makes it very likely it was the vaccine causing such widespread, sudden injury.

These numbers alone suggest that all COVID shots should be defunded and Congress must immediately remove liability protections from the manufacturers. But a more recent document released by the Europeans is even more devastating, because it breaks down the 1.6 million adverse events observed by Pfizer by category and subcategory of ailment and injury. The 393-page confidential Pfizer document, dated Aug. 19, 2022, shows that Pfizer observed over 10,000 categories of diagnosis, many of them very severe and very rare. For example:

• Pfizer was aware of 73,542 cases of 264 categories of vascular disorders from the shots. Many of them are rare conditions.
• There were hundreds of categories of nervous system disorders, totaling 696,508 cases.
• There were 61,518 AEs from well over 100 categories of eye disorders, which is unusual for a vaccine injury.
• Likewise, there were over 47,000 ear disorders, including almost 16,000 cases of tinnitus, which even Mayo Clinic researchers observed as a common but often devastating side effect early on.
• There were roughly 225,000 cases of skin and tissue disorders.
• There were roughly 190,000 cases of respiratory disorders.
• Disturbingly, there were over 178,000 cases of reproductive or breast disorders, including disorders you wouldn’t expect, such as 506 cases of erectile dysfunction in men.
• Very disturbingly, there were over 77,000 psychiatric disorders observed following the shots, lending credence to Dr. Peter McCullough’s research observing case studies showing psychosis correlating with vaccination.
• 3,711 cases of tumors – benign and malignant
• Of course, there were almost 127,000 cardiac disorders, running the gamut of about 270 categories of heart damage, including many rare disorders, in addition to myocarditis.
• There were over 100,000 blood and lymphatic disorders, for both of which there’s a wealth of literature linking them to the spike protein.

2009

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Humming

 

 

Magpie
https://twitter.com/i/status/1669017609776373768

 

 

Coconut Crab

 

 

Kids play
https://twitter.com/i/status/1668656979424817160

 

 

Cat masks
https://twitter.com/i/status/1668958969333972992

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

May 312023
 


John Singer Sargent Palmettos, Florida 1917

 

NATO Is Creating Another Battlefield On European Continent (GT)
NATO Is ‘Escalation Factor’ In Kosovo – Moscow (RT)
Maidan-Style Coup Attempt Unfolding In Belgrade — Russian Ambassador (TASS)
NATO To Send More Troops To Kosovo Following Clashes (RT)
Another Strike on Vladimir Putin? (GP)
US ‘Encourage’ Ukraine To Attack Russia – Ambassador (RT)
Russia Will Be Appropriately Represented At BRICS Summit – Kremlin (RT)
Oil Flows Can Only Be Redirected, Not Stopped (Slav)
Pfizer, the EU, and Disappearing Ink (Pol.eu)
Growing List of Whistleblowers Reporting Reprisal Under Biden Admin (ET)
New Insight into Hunter Biden and his Collapsing World of Corruption (Turley)
Jim Rogers Is Bracing For The Worst Bear Market Of His Life (BI)
Student Loans Represent 7% of US GDP (ZH)
Greece and Poland Join Forces to Seek German War Reparations (GR)
Donald Trump, Pence’s Taskforce, and DeSantis’s Revisionist Attacks (NP)
‘Swiftboating America’ (Mahncke)

 

 


Former Ukraine PM AZAROV: “Over the years, presidents of Ukraine made promises to turn the country into a new France or a new Switzerland. Zelensky went further than anyone and turned the country into a new Afghanistan, to the delight of the Anglo-Saxons and defense companies.”

 

 

Putin: NOT geopolitics

 

 

 

 

Lavrov genocide
https://twitter.com/i/status/1663332335620874240

 

 

 

 

RFK Ukraine
https://twitter.com/i/status/1663573559044702210

 

 

 

 

Kiev supermarket
https://twitter.com/i/status/1663363631520661504

 

 

Carrey

 

 

Sources in Kiev said that as a result of a strike on a military facility on Rybalsky Island, one of the control centers was hit. With the beginning of the air raid, the personnel of the center descended into the shelter, but the Russian Aerospace starwars Forces used a missile with a penetrating warhead, which pierced through the building, penetrated the foundation and exploded, destroying the shelter, where at that moment there were up to a hundred officers of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and civilian personnel, including twenty foreign military from the USA and Great Britain, who interacted between the Center and similar Western headquarters. A rescue operation was immediately launched. Its results are unknown, but, according to the call center of the Kiev “Ambulance”, more than ten cars were immediately pulled there and about thirty flights were made. On the same evening, two helicopters urgently took off from Kiev towards the border with Poland.

 

 

 

 

Two different fronts: Kosovo and Belgrade. This is from China’s Global Times:

NATO Is Creating Another Battlefield On European Continent (GT)

The situation in the Balkans is now at an explosive point. KFOR, the NATO-led peacekeeping force in Kosovo, clashed with Serb protesters on Monday. The tension arose after ethnic Albanian mayors took office in northern Kosovo’s Serb majority area after April elections that the Serbs boycotted. Kosovo and Serbia have long-running tensions. Kosovo was originally an autonomous province of Serbia in the former Yugoslavia. With the support of the US and the West, Kosovo has been seeking to move further on the road of “independent statehood” and adopted a hardline attitude toward Serbia. NATO’s involvement has further exacerbated the rift between Kosovo and Serbia, leading to military conflicts between the two sides and undermining the peace and unity of the Western Balkans.

As the situation escalates, NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg has called on Kosovo to tone down tensions with Serbia. But it remains doubtful if NATO truly wants to stop the conflict. The NATO-led multinational contingents were deployed to four municipalities in Kosovo to contain “violent demonstrations” as “newly elected mayors in recent days tried to take office,” KFOR said in a statement. NATO calls for easing tensions on one hand, but on the other hand, increases military presence. It seems that NATO is just buying time to arm Kosovo, analysts argued. From its past wars, it’s clear the US is quite good at pretending fairness in stopping a fight while helping one side, buying time for those it supports by calling for a ceasefire. The promises made by NATO and other Western countries to protect the Serbs in Kosovo simply cannot be fulfilled. An article in the Financial Times said that the West’s push to heal the divide between Serbia and Kosovo is ill-fated.

Song Zhongping, a Chinese military expert and TV commentator, told the Global Times that NATO forces did not truly engage in peacekeeping in Serbia and Kosovo, but rather aimed to maintain the basic fact of “Kosovo’s independence” and helped Kosovo oppress Serbs. Serbia’s sovereignty and national security aren’t NATO’s priority. “The Russia-Ukraine conflict has not yielded any results for peace, and there is a possibility of escalation. The possibility of renewed conflict in the Balkans also exists. Because the Russia-Ukraine conflict has not achieved the desired effect for the US, Washington needs to create a new war on the European continent,” Song said. From the perspective of the US, the country is not concerned about the possibility of more wars breaking out in Europe, as it is not directly involved in the region. Washington can withdraw its military forces at any time.

Washington actually hopes to see chaos in Europe, as well as the mess of the European economy and Europe’s dependence on the US. The US does not want a united and strong Europe to exist. Meanwhile, as the Russia-Ukraine conflict has consumed much of the US energy and resources, the US is likely to view the worsening rift between Serbia and Kosovo as an opportunity that it can take advantage of to weaken Russia’s influence in Serbia and the Balkans. The ultimate goal of the US is to have both Europe and Russia suffer losses, which is more in line with its global strategy and hegemonic interests. Now the US sees Europe as two powder kegs, one in a hot war and one about to explode. In Washington’s eyes, Europe’s crisis is an opportunity for the US to take advantage of.

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“Not only have they shown their incompetence … [they] themselves became a source of unnecessary violence, an escalation factor..”

NATO Is ‘Escalation Factor’ In Kosovo – Moscow (RT)

Instead of defusing hostilities between the local authorities and the Serbian ethnic majority in the northern part of Kosovo, NATO troops have only exacerbated the unrest, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said in a statement on Tuesday. Zakharova pointed out that the situation in the area had reached “a critical red line.” She was referring to violent clashes between local Serbs and NATO’s Kosovo Force (KFOR) that erupted after the bloc’s soldiers attempted to disperse demonstrators that were protesting against the inauguration of the new mayor of the Albanian ethnicity. The stand-off resulted in dozens of injuries on both sides. The unrest came after local Serbs, who have long sought for more autonomy, boycotted Pristina-backed elections in the northern part of Kosovo.

Despite a turnout of less than 4%, local authorities treated them as legitimate, resulting in the election of four ethnically Albanian mayors. Zakharova argued that the crisis in Kosovo, which could be resolved peacefully, turned out to be “a nut too hard to crack” for NATO service members. “Not only have they shown their incompetence … [they] themselves became a source of unnecessary violence, an escalation factor,” the spokeswoman claimed. As a result, those who were charged with protecting Serbs from this crackdown, “supported Pristina’s xenophobic aspirations, basically turning into terror accomplices” by defending local authorities, she said. The spokeswoman also urged the West to “silence its false propaganda” and stop accusing desperate Serbs of provoking incidents when they were just trying to defend their legitimate rights in a peaceful manner.

“While looking for the guilty, mediators from the US and the EU should muster up some courage and look in the mirror,” the official stated. “To de-escalate, decisive steps are needed, and not half-measures like an idea proposed by the US to temporarily ‘move’ the newly-minted ‘mayors’ from municipal buildings to other facilities,” Zakharova stressed, adding that those steps may include the creation of an association of Serbian municipalities in Kosovo. The region unilaterally declared independence in 2008 with the support of the US and many of its allies. It is not recognized by several countries, including Russia, China, and Serbia itself.

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Promises were made to the Serbs in Kosovo, and not kept. Sound familiar? If you base your far-reaching actions on “elections” with a turnout under 4%, then yes, you will have trouble.

Maidan-Style Coup Attempt Unfolding In Belgrade — Russian Ambassador (TASS)

Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic’s opponents are trying to stage a Maidan-style coup (the term “Maidan” was coined after Kiev’s central Independence Square, or Maidan Nezalezhnosti, to refer to anti-government riots) in the capital, Russian Ambassador to Serbia Alexander Botsan-Kharchenko said on Tuesday. “This is part of the hybrid war. I would like to stress that anti-Belgrade forces acted almost synchronously; they operate on two fronts – this is the situation in Kosovo and attempts at a Maidan coup here, in Belgrade,” he said. An anti-government rally was held in Belgrade on May 28. The protesters gathered near the building of Serbia’s national broadcaster. It was the fourth protest rally in the past month. Grass-roots demonstrations under the slogan Serbia Against Violence were held in Belgrade on May 8, 12, and 19 following two shootings that occurred on consecutive days in the country on May 3 and 4.


The first was a school shooting in Belgrade where ten people died and seven were wounded, followed up by eight people being killed and 14 wounded by an armed man in Mladenovac the next day. People demanded the resignation of Interior Minister Bratislav Gasic and chief of the Security Information Agency Aleksandar Vulin. Apart from that, the demonstrators insisted that some pro-government media propagating violence and hatred be shut down. The first rally was quite peaceful, with practically no anti-government slogans. People were simply congregating in silence in front of the parliamentary building. During the second rally, protesters blocked a bridge across the Sava River and chanted anti-government slogans. The third demonstration had an anti-government character too. According to the Serbian interior ministry, more than 11,000 people took part in these rallies.

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Yeah, that will bring peace… Military troops vs civilians.

NATO To Send More Troops To Kosovo Following Clashes (RT)

The NATO bloc will deploy 700 additional peacekeepers to Kosovo, where 30 troops were wounded during clashes with local Serb protesters. Another battalion will be placed on high alert in the event of further escakation. NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg announced the move during a Tuesday press briefing, saying the deployment was a response to recent “attacks” on the peacekeeping force, which he said were “unacceptable.” Stoltenberg urged officials in Pristina and Belgrade to take “concrete steps” to de-escalate the situation, and said the two sides should participate in an EU-brokered dialogue. Violent clashes between local Serbs and NATO’s Kosovo Force (KFOR) erupted after peacekeepers attempted to disperse demonstrators protesting the inauguration of a an Albanian mayor in a Serb-majority area. The standoff resulted in dozens of injuries on both sides.

The unrest came after local Serbs, who have long sought autonomy in Kosovo, boycotted Pristina-backed elections in several regions of Serbia’s breakaway province. Despite a turnout of less than 4%, local authorities accepted the votes as legitimate, announcing the election of four Albanian mayors. KFOR was first established in 1999 in the wake of NATO’s intervention in the Kosovo conflict on behalf of Kosovar Albanians and the bloc’s months-long bombing campaign in Serbia. The force consisted of around 50,000 troops at its height, but has since declined to about 3,700 soldiers today.

Kosovo has seen several waves of unrest since the 1999 war. In 2008, the Western-backed Albanian authorities unilaterally declared independence from Belgrade. The move was quickly backed by the United States and many other Western countries. Russia and China are among the states that continue to view Kosovo as part of Serbia. Moscow has said NATO is largely responsible for the recent spike in hostilities. Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova accused the alliance of becoming “a source of unnecessary violence” and an “escalation factor” in the region. She urged the bloc to “silence its false propaganda” against local Serbs, who she said had been wrongly blamed for provoking incidents.

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“The early morning assault specifically targeted the wealthiest areas of the city, where Putin and multiple Russian elites have homes.”

Another Strike on Vladimir Putin? (GP)

Did the Ukrainians attempt to assassinate Russian President Vladimir Putin Tuesday morning? Did they have assistance? The Daily Mail reported that Moscow was attacked by several suspected Ukrainian drones Tuesday morning ostensibly in revenge for Russian attacks on Kyiv. The early morning assault specifically targeted the wealthiest areas of the city, where Putin and multiple Russian elites have homes. One local resident pointed out the attacks all happened within “an earshot” of Putin’s official residence in Novo-Ogaryovo. Here are the full details from the Daily Mail:

“Several buildings were damaged in wealthy suburbs of Moscow, including the elite district of Rublyovka to the south-west of the capital. One drone exploded into a mushroom cloud near the village of Usovo, which is just down the road from Putin’s official Novo-Ogaryovo residence. Explosive drones also struck blocks of flats in Leninsky Prospekt and Profsoyuznaya Street about six miles from the centre of Moscow, reportedly wounding several residents and damaging the buildings. Tuesday’s early morning raid targeted some of Moscow’s wealthiest areas including a western enclave where Putin and the elite have residences. Two people were injured while some Russians in two damaged apartment blocks were briefly evacuated, according to Moscow’s mayor.”

The New York Times notes that this marked the first time strikes hit civilian areas in the Russia’s capital. Looks like the crazy ukrainian lunatics may be planning on attacking Moscow? What is Biden getting us into? [..] If Ukraine was involved in this attack, the odds of World War III just skyrocketed. A peace deal must be struck quickly.

Maiman
https://twitter.com/i/status/1663467784578412544

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“The Russian Federation has been sentenced to ‘capital punishment’ in the [West] long ago. But simply, they don’t have it in them to achieve this goal..”

US ‘Encourage’ Ukraine To Attack Russia – Ambassador (RT)

The US has been inciting Ukraine to strike Russian territory, despite claiming the opposite, Russian Ambassador to Washington Anatoly Antonov said on Wednesday. Antonov argued that Washington’s statements in response to the recent drone raid on the Russian capital “sound like an encouragement for Ukrainian terrorists.” “Doesn’t the [US] administration understand that no one believes their slogans about non-support of Ukrainian strikes on Russian territory?!” the diplomat said, according to a statement on the embassy’s Telegram channel. Antonov’s remarks came after a White House spokesperson told reporters that “as [a] general matter, we do not support attacks inside of Russia.” The goal of the drone attack was to “sow fear among Russians” and undermine trust in the authorities, he said.


“The Russian Federation has been sentenced to ‘capital punishment’ in the [West] long ago. But simply, they don’t have it in them to achieve this goal,” the ambassador stated. Drones carrying explosives crashed into residential buildings in Moscow on Tuesday morning. According to the Russian Defense Ministry, eight UAVs participated in the attack, and all of them were either destroyed by air defenses, or veered off course due to the use of jamming equipment. Moscow Mayor Sergey Sobyanin said that no one was killed or seriously injured. Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky’s senior adviser Mikhail Podoliak denied Kiev’s involvement in the attack, but suggested that more similar raids would come.

We’re taking no blood

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Putin will not attend: “the immunities do not override any warrant issued by any international tribunal (like the ICC) against any attendee..”

Russia Will Be Appropriately Represented At BRICS Summit – Kremlin (RT)

Russia plans to take part in the BRICS summit in South Africa at the “proper level,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Tuesday in response to a question about whether President Vladimir Putin would attend. Putin has been invited to the gathering. However, by virtue of being a signatory to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC), which has issued a warrant against the Russian leader for alleged war crimes in Ukraine, South Africa would be obliged to arrest him if he attends. The 15th BRICS Summit in August will bring together the leaders of the world’s leading emerging economies: Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa. Speaking at a news briefing on Tuesday, Peskov emphasized, as cited by the news agency TASS, that “Russia attributes great importance to the development of this integration format.”


Moscow will therefore “take part in this summit at the proper level.” Although he did not give any specifics, he offered assurances that “all the details” on the issue would be provided at a later stage. “We count as a bare minimum on partner countries in such an important format not being guided by such illegal decisions,” he said in reaction to a query about Pretoria implementing the warrant, Reuters reported. South Africa’s Foreign Ministry has granted diplomatic immunity to foreign officials participating in the summit from August 22-24, as well for a meeting of BRICS foreign ministers this week. Clayson Monyela, spokesperson for the Department of International Relations and Cooperation, explained that such immunities are customary for international gatherings. However, “the immunities do not override any warrant issued by any international tribunal (like the ICC) against any attendee,” he clarified in a tweet.

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Oil simply follows the path of least resistance. It doesn’t go away. Too much demand for that.

“India’s fuel exports to Europe over the past 12 months have jumped by over 70% [..] there is precious little the EU could do to change this without plunging the European economy into a deep recession brought on by fuel price inflation.”

Oil Flows Can Only Be Redirected, Not Stopped (Slav)

Asian oil imports were due for a marked rebound this month after the end of the maintenance season. Chances are that a lot of the additional oil would be coming from Russia, which has become one of the largest suppliers of China and India. In fact, Russian oil flows are growing despite claims from Moscow that it has reduced its total oil production. According to Bloomberg, Russian oil exports actually hit the highest since the start of 2022 last month. This is happening in the context of the most severe sanction push by the collective West against the country. And it is the clearest evidence yet of just how essential oil is for the functioning of the global economy. Before the invasion of Ukraine, Russia’s biggest oil clients were European countries. For China and India, it was a minor supplier. Since last year this has changed dramatically.

Now, China and India are the two biggest buyers of Russian crude. The two together took in as much as 80% of Russia’s total oil exports last month, according to the International Energy Agency. And the total, at 8.3 million barrels daily, was markedly higher than the annual average for both last year and the year before that. What’s more, Europe, which placed an embargo on direct Russian oil and fuel imports, has been taking in more fuels made in Asia—notably India. In fact, it seems to be taking in a lot of these fuels if the EU’s top diplomat Josep Borrell had to call publicly for an end to this practice. Indeed, India’s fuel exports to Europe over the past 12 months have jumped by over 70%, Reuters reported earlier this month. The report also noted that there is precious little the EU could do to change this without plunging the European economy into a deep recession brought on by fuel price inflation.

So, while until a year ago, Russian crude and fuels were going mostly to Europe directly, now almost all crude oil that Russia exports ends up in China and India. From there, processed into fuels, it goes to Europe. The routes have shifted. Oil demand has not. It is because of the resilience of oil demand that Russia’s oil revenues are recovering, too. In a recent report, Finland-based energy think tank Centre for Research on Energy and Clean Air said Moscow’s oil export revenues have rebounded to the highest since last November over the past couple of months. The authors noted that total budget revenues were down in April on an annual basis, but added that “Russia was able to export its main crude oil variety, for the first time, at prices that were systematically above the price cap level set by the U.S., EU and allies.”

There has been a lot of reporting about how China and India were benefiting from the discount at which Russian crude sells because of the sanctions. Most of that reporting has had an optimistic spin along the following lines: sanctions and the price cap are working because Russian oil is flowing, keeping global prices in check and bringing in lower revenues for the Kremlin. What the optimistic spin omits is that Russian oil prices remain tied to global prices, and as global prices recover, so do the prices of Russian crude, as stated by the Centre for Research on Energy and Clean Air. In other words, global oil demand, and Asian oil demand specifically, is so inelastic that no amount of sanctions can sap it.

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They simply refuse to testify or provide files. Sort of like the FBI in the US. Ursula must be fired, or the EU has a giant credibility problem. The total bill is €21.5 billion..

Pfizer, the EU, and Disappearing Ink (Pol.eu)

It’s as if Pfizer’s massive COVID-19 vaccine deal with the European Commission were written with disappearing ink: the more time passes, the more details seem to vanish. For a while now controversy has raged around the text messages supposedly exchanged between Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and Pfizer Chief Executive Albert Bourla in the run-up to the April 2021 deal for 1.1 billion doses of the BioNTech/Pfizer vaccine. The content and even existence of the messages has been shrouded in secrecy, with requests for clarification met with a fat “no comment.” On Friday, the Commission said it had reached a long sought-after deal with Pfizer to revise the terms of the contract. The new deal cuts down the 450 million doses that were still due to be delivered in 2023, and spreads them out over the next four years.

That’s all the information you get. The Commission isn’t revealing the new number of doses that member countries must buy, nor any of the financial terms of the amended contract. A lack of transparency has been a consistent feature of this deal. The Commission refused a Brussels journalist’s “access to documents” request to see von der Leyen’s alleged messages with Bourla — despite reproach from the European Ombudsman. The EU’s budget watchdog was blocked from looking into the negotiations, with no explanation given. The European Parliament’s committee on COVID-19 didn’t fare any better, with von der Leyen dodging a summons to appear in front of MEPs to answer their questions. It wasn’t always like this. The Commission was initially keen to flaunt the deal, which secured up to 1.8 billion doses of the vaccine that the U.S. pharmaceutical company jointly developed with Germany’s BioNTech.

Back then in April 2021, COVID-19 was still raging and governments were scrambling to secure access to limited supplies of vaccines; a couple of months earlier, the recently Brexited U.K. had secured a preferential supply line from AstraZeneca. Then came the big contract. It was the third deal the Commission had signed with BioNTech/Pfizer, but it dwarfed anything that came before. It locked the bloc into purchasing 900 million doses of vaccine upfront — enough to vaccinate the EU’s adult population three times over. Eventually an option for another 200 million doses was exercised, bringing the total number of doses to 1.1 billion, worth €21.5 billion based on vaccine prices reported by the Financial Times. Von der Leyen even took a victory lap in the New York Times, revealing that she took an unusual personal role in the talks in the run-up to the deal.

In the article, titled “How Europe Sealed a Pfizer Vaccine Deal With Texts and Calls”, the U.S. newspaper cites interviews with both von der Leyen and Bourla, revealing that the two texted and called each other in the run-up to the contract. At the top of the article, von der Leyen is photographed staring, steely-eyed, out of the Berlaymont onto Brussels, lending her face to the deal. More recently, though, the contract has become something of an embarrassment for the EU’s executive. [..] Alexander Fanta, a Brussels reporter at Netzpolitik, put in an “access to documents” request after reading the New York Times story. The Commission said it couldn’t find the texts, earning a rap on the knuckles from the European Ombudsman.

The EU’s budget watchdog, the European Court of Auditors, also came up against a wall of silence. In a report on the EU’s vaccine procurement published September last year, the agency auditors said that unlike with other contract negotiations, the Commission refused to provide records of the discussions with Pfizer, either in the form of minutes, names of experts consulted, agreed terms, or other evidence. Next it was the turn of the European Parliament. The committee on COVID-19, led by Belgian Socialist Kathleen Van Brempt, didn’t fare any better that the auditors. Twice, Pfizer’s CEO refused to appear in front of MEPs. And senior figures in the Parliament blocked a public cross-examination of the Commission president. Even the New York Times, where von der Leyen first trumpeted her success, is now suing the Commission to have the text messages released.

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The investigation into Hunter started in 2018…

Growing List of Whistleblowers Reporting Reprisal Under Biden Admin (ET)

In just under two-and-a-half years of the Biden administration, a growing number of whistleblowers have come forward to allege serious misconduct from officials in the FBI, Internal Revenue Service (IRS), and even the White House. By law, whistleblowers are protected from retaliation. However, according to several recent whistleblowers, reprisal has been a common result for individuals who have come forward with allegations of misconduct under the current administration. Below are some of the individuals who have blown the whistle on wrongdoing under the Biden administration and faced or feared punishment for doing so. Last month, an unnamed IRS criminal supervisory agent alleged to Congress that the IRS was mishandling its investigation of President Joe Biden’s son, Hunter Biden.

In an April 19 letter, the whistleblower’s attorney, Mark Lytle, wrote to Congress seeking legal protections for his client to provide further details about disclosures the agent had made internally at the IRS, to the U.S. Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration, and the Justice Department inspector general. The disclosures, Lytle wrote, “contradict sworn testimony to Congress by a senior political appointee” and involved unresolved conflicts of interest and examples of preferential treatment for political reasons. Although the letter did not mention the younger Biden by name, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) revealed in an April 20 interview with Fox News that the allegations were related to the federal probe of potential tax crimes committed by the president’s son—an investigation that has been ongoing since 2018.

Following the letter’s publication in the media, rumors swirled that the referenced political appointee was Attorney General Merrick Garland, who testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee in March that the investigation into Hunter Biden would remain free of political influence. However, on May 15, Lytle and Empower Oversight President Tristan Leavitt—who is also representing the whistleblower—revealed in a subsequent letter to Congress that their client and his entire team had been removed from the investigation, allegedly at the request of the Justice Department. The change, the attorneys said, was “clearly retaliatory” even though such reprisal violates federal law.

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“I cannot find you, believe it or not I have been looking. I [have] driven by Hallie’s, you fathers. Called texted you … I want to help all the deals are still alive.”

New Insight into Hunter Biden and his Collapsing World of Corruption (Turley)

In 2018, Hunter Biden’s world was collapsing. The New York Times had run a story on one of his shady deals with the Chinese and his father, then vice president, was pulled into the vortex. It appears that Hunter was in a free fall and his uncle Jim Biden reached out in newly discovered messages to offer him a “safe harbor.” The exchange is an insight into a train wreck of a life of the scion of one of the most powerful families in the country. However, it is also insight into a world of influence peddling where millions simply evaporated in the coffers of the Biden family. On their face, the messages seem to contradict public statements from President Biden on the foreign-influence peddling that was used to fund Hunter’s drug-infused, self-destructive lifestyle. The Times story caused a panic in the Biden family.

Despite a largely supportive media, the Bidens have long been known for influence peddling. Jim Biden has been repeatedly criticized for marketing his access to his brother in pitches to clients. Hunter knew that the Times story was only the tip of an iceberg. There were deals all over the world with foreign figures worth millions and some of these figures had close ties to foreign intelligence or regimes. As revealed recently by the House Oversight Committee, the Bidens constructed a labyrinth of corporations and accounts to transfer millions from these deals to a variety of Biden family members, including grandchildren. Nevertheless, Joe Biden repeatedly claimed as a presidential candidate and as president that he had no knowledge of any foreign dealings of his son. Those denials now appear patently false.

The laptop includes pictures and appointments of Hunter’s foreign business associates with Joe Biden. It also includes a recording concerning a Times report on Dec. 12, 2018, detailing Hunter’s dealings with Ye Jianming, the head of CEFC China Energy Company. Ye would later be arrested for corruption. As Biden associates pushed the Times to change aspects of the story, Joe Biden called to report on the results. In his message, Biden ends his call to Hunter with the statement “I think you’re clear. And anyway if you get a chance, give me a call, I love you.” The new messages indicate that the Bidens were worried that Hunter was in a free fall as these dealings were becoming known and revenue was declining. Jim Biden appears to be rushing to get Hunter to work the problem with the family.

He assures him that they can find him “a safe harbor” and that “I can work with you[r] father alone!” Hunter previously complained that he was giving as much as half of his proceeds to his father and was now facing towering financial demands. He appears to have cut off the family. That is a dangerous development for a man who had a long struggle with drugs and alcohol. Hunter blew through a fortune on narcotics and women, including allegations that he may have used a shared credit card with his father to pay off prostitutes. Both Joe and Jim Biden were reaching out to Hunter to assure him that he was in the “clear” and that there is a “safe harbor.” However, Jim pushed him to remain in contact and in the fold: “I cannot find you, believe it or not I have been looking. I [have] driven by Hallie’s, you fathers. Called texted you … I want to help all the deals are still alive.”

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“The world has never seen the debt and the spending and the money printing like in the last few years. So something is going to have to be very, very ruinous to solve this problem this time.”

Jim Rogers Is Bracing For The Worst Bear Market Of His Life (BI)

Jim Rogers is bracing for the biggest market downturn in eight decades. The 80-year-old investor issued the grave warning during a recent RealVision interview. He also cautioned the US dollar’s global dominance is under threat, and higher interest rates will be necessary to rein in soaring prices. The cofounder of George Soros’ Quantum Fund also slammed US lawmakers for the current debt-ceiling debacle, touted commodities as the best hedges against inflation, and dismissed the idea that governments will embrace bitcoin. Here are Rogers’ 7 best quotes, lightly edited for length and clarity:
1. “The next bear market will be the worst in my lifetime, because the debt has gone up by such staggering amounts in the past 14 years.” (Rogers said the 2008 crash was caused by excessive amounts of debt, and borrowing has ballooned since then, suggesting a far worse downturn lies ahead.)

2. “We should always be concerned about Washington. They don’t have a clue what they’re doing. And they prove it day in and day out.” (He was discussing the current political gridlock over raising the debt ceiling.)

3. “You should be extremely worried. If you’re not, you don’t know what’s going on. Many countries are starting to look for alternatives to the US dollar, partly because of its horrendous debt problem. I’m looking every day, because I know that something bad is going to happen in the currency markets in the next two or three years.” (Rogers was commenting on de-dollarization fears.)

4. “Interest rates are going to go higher worldwide. I don’t know how high they have to go to kill inflation this time around. The world has never seen the debt and the spending and the money printing like in the last few years. So something is going to have to be very, very ruinous to solve this problem this time.”

5. “There’ll be trouble in all the markets — property markets, stock markets, bond markets, currency markets, everything. You have to learn about cash or selling short in order to survive what’s coming.”

6. “I don’t think that the world is going to convert to bitcoin. It will be computer money, but it will be government computer money.”

7. “The best place to be when you have inflation is real assets, and real assets are commodities. The cheapest asset that I know is still commodities.” (Rogers said he owns some silver and gold currently.)

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“..the average student loan payment is $393 per month..” For 25 million Americans. That adds up to $9.825 billion. And as per September 2023, for the first time in 39 months, that must be repaid again. Which removes it from discretionary spending.

Student Loans Represent 7% of US GDP (ZH)

Here are the details: late last year, Biden extended the repayment pause, which postpones roughly $5bn per month in student loan repayments, until 60 days after the Supreme Court ruled on the separate $400bn loan forgiveness plan the – the Supreme Court is likely to rule on loan forgiveness in June, so this likely would mean a restart of payments after August 2023. And now, the debt limit agreement prohibits further extension of the payment pause, but remains silent on the student loan forgiveness plan which however will be nixed by SCOTUS much to the chagrin of screaming libs and lifelong members of the “free $hit” army. Prior to the announced debt limit deal Goldman had already assumed the repayment pause would end on schedule, though there was clearly a chance the White House might have extended it once again.

The debt limit agreement eliminates that possibility (“except as expressly authorized by an act of Congress”) and should result in a restart of student loan payments in September 2023. What happens then? Well, according to Jefferies, the return of monthly loan payments presents risks similar to the effects of the 2013 fiscal cliff, when tax increases led to reduced consumer spending. And in a note released Monday (available to pro subscribers), JPMorgan’s chief US economist Michael Feroli said that the end of the payment moratorium will reduce annual disposable personal income by $38 billion, which will reduce consumer spending. Separately, a March analysis by FreightWaves found that federal government programs boosted personal income by an estimated $2.3 trillion from March 2020 to December 2022.

According to The Motley Fool, consumers received an average of $3,450 in stimulus during the COVID economy. This included direct payments into bank accounts, an expanded Child Tax Credit and an expanded Earned Income Tax Credit. But one of the biggest COVID-related stimulus programs was not factored into the s numbers: student loan forbearance. As noted above, Education Secretary Miguel Cardona said the student loan deferment program will end no later than June 30, 2023, and payments are expected to resume by Sept. 1, 2023: “The amount of money we are talking about, in excess of a trillion dollars, is staggering. Student loans represent 7% of U.S. GDP” according to FrightWaves.

Putting these numbers in context, 64% of the $1.7 trillion in student loan debt have been in forbearance for the past three years, amounting to $1.1 trillion. Many of the 25 million Americans who have deferred payments for student debt are aged 18-44 years old, one of the most important demographic groups that drive consumer spending. Some more math: according to a New York Fed study, the average student loan payment is $393 per month. For consumers taking advantage of the program, they have deferred 39 months worth of payments, resulting in more than $15,327 in additional discretionary income during the period, much larger than the amount most consumers received from other COVID stimulus programs.

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Good luck.

Greece and Poland Join Forces to Seek German War Reparations (GR)

Poland is seeking the help of Greece to demand World War II reparations from Germany, according to press reports in Poland. Polish state television TVP, reported that a major international conference on German war reparations will be held in Greece in June with the participation of Polish, Italian, Greek, and Serbian lawyers. Polish Deputy Foreign Minister Arkadiusz Mularczyk told Polish Radio 24 on Tuesday that “We are launching an international discussion.” Mularczyk stressed that in the background of Poland’s political actions in regard to obtaining war reparations from Germany, there is a kind of battle for historical memory. He added that besides striving to obtain reparation funds, Poland is also trying to educate and inform people about WWII history.


“5.4 million people died in Poland as a result of acts of aggression by the German Nazi occupying power, while 330,000 died in Greece.” “This quantitative difference is visible in other areas too. Both Poland and Greece share a similar fate of so-called ‘small allies’. In terms of reparations, they have been marginalized. Right up to today,” Muarczyk pointed out according to TVP. Earlier, Polish Ambassador to Greece Artur Lompart said in an interview with the Polish Press Agency (PAP) that the issue of reparations from Germany for damages suffered during World War II has never been closed in Greece. He noted that it is a field for cooperation between Poland and Greece. During her recent visit to Berlin, President of Greece Katerina Sakellaropoulou raised the issue of war reparations once again. At her meeting with her German counterpart, Frank-Walter Steinmeier in January, she stressed “the utmost importance of the issue of war reparations and the occupation loan.”

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“The swamp runs deep.”

Donald Trump, Pence’s Taskforce, and DeSantis’s Revisionist Attacks (NP)

There’s plenty of things we can say we would have done differently at the onset of COVID-19. I was originally supportive of Mike Pence’s taskforce, and the 14 days to slow the spread. I regret that. Though I don’t regret calling it out as a lab-leaked virus from day one. Donald Trump surely has his own regrets, expressed through his repeated disowning of Antony Fauci, Deborah Birx, and many of the bureaucrats who we now know colluded to provide him with incorrect information. Perhaps you don’t recall the anger from the corporate media when Trump called out the falsification of data, and attempted to stop it informing policy. But there’s more that keeps niggling at me about the way Trump’s opponents – mostly DeSantis surrogates – now deal with that issue.

They point to DeSantis’s (scarcely better) record. It’s true to say the Florida governor course corrected faster than Democrat leaders across the country. But it’s ludicrous to argue that Florida was operating “as normal” throughout COVID. As a reminder, DeSantis declared a public health emergency in March; limited beach gatherings and restaurant occupancy; issued an executive order closing down businesses; imposed quarantine orders; set up highway checkpoints; issued stay-at-home orders. He was even far behind Arkansas, Iowa, Nebraska, and both North and South Dakota in defying Tony Fauci. When he did re-open his state, he admitted he was “following President Trump’s recommendations to reopen.” But the campaign talking points from Team DeSantis aside, there’s something everyone seems to ignore: the origins of the COVID-19 taskforce, and the beginning of Operation Warp Speed.

Trump’s first Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price made Big Pharma very uncomfortable. Which is why they briefed his “unorthodox” views on mandatory vaccination to the Washington Post’s health reporter Amy Goldstein. The article quotes someone from Avalere Health – a D.C. health policy consultancy firm – who said: “I’ve seen people with extreme views come into government and take the position very seriously, and I’ve seen people with extreme views come into government and pursue their specific interests.” The “extreme” position at the time? That Price used to be a member of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS) which at the time opposed mandatory vaccination as “human to human experimentation.” Avalere Health, for what it’s worth, is led by a woman called Elizabeth Carpenter, who previously worked at the globalist New American Foundation, which receives most of its funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and even the United States Department of State. The swamp runs deep.

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”The Epoch Times presents the second part of an exclusive edited extract from the forthcoming book “Swiftboating America” by Hans Mahncke, co-host of “Truth over News” on EpochTV. Sign up at SwiftboatingAmerica.com to get a notification once the book is out.”

“In her failed attempt to become president, Hillary Clinton had swiftboated America herself.”

‘Swiftboating America’ (Mahncke)

On May 20, 2022, Hillary Clinton’s campaign manager, Robby Mook, finally admitted that it was Clinton herself who had greenlighted her presidential campaign’s scheme to smear Donald Trump with Russia collusion claims. Mook’s admission, made during his testimony in Clinton campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann’s trial for lying to the FBI about Clinton’s scheme, marked the final chapter in a six-year saga that ruined a presidency and turned the world order on its head. It all began in early 2016 when Jennifer Palmieri, director of communications for the Clinton presidential campaign, received an email from Joel Johnson, a senior adviser to Bill Clinton. Johnson wrote: “Who is in charge of the Trump swift boat project? Needs to be ready, funded and unleashed when we decide—but not a half assed scramble.”

Palmieri sarcastically replied: “Gee. Thanks, Joel. We thought we could half-ass it. Let’s discuss.” The exchange was buried in a huge trove of emails from Clinton campaign Chairman John Podesta that were released by whistleblower group WikiLeaks in October 2016. The significance of the two emails was largely overlooked at the time. It was only with hindsight—and the progressive unraveling of Clinton’s scheme to vilify Trump—that their importance has become apparent. We now know that the two emails marked the inception of the dirtiest political trick of all time: Clinton’s Russiagate scam, a multi-pronged and multi-layered campaign to paint Trump as an asset of the Kremlin. Her scheme was completely unheard of and beyond the bounds of anything that had previously happened in the dirty world of American politics.

In 1972, Republican operatives broke into the headquarters of the Democratic National Committee at the Watergate Office Building in Washington. The ostensible purpose of the break-in was to eavesdrop on a political opponent, but even that act pales in comparison to what Clinton did. Clinton’s intention was to execute an elaborate scheme that painted her opponent as an agent of a foreign power. It was a devious plan, and it came at a heavy price for all Americans. Russiagate not only consumed Trump’s presidency, but it also altered the geopolitical balance of power for generations yet to come. In her failed attempt to become president, Hillary Clinton had swiftboated America herself.

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Gervais
https://twitter.com/i/status/1663497038527438849

 

 


A typical steak is 8 ounces. 28.35 grams in one ounce. So you can have approx 1/20th of a steak per day which is like 1 bite. Maybe 2 bites.

 

 

Goat gravity
https://twitter.com/i/status/1663554790058754052

 

 

 

 

Girl, dog

 

 

The best life
https://twitter.com/i/status/1663781293182578689

 

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

Apr 292023
 
 April 29, 2023  Posted by at 8:50 am Finance Tagged with: , , , , , , , ,  29 Responses »


Fayum mummy. Portrait of a boy, with a golden pendant. between 50 BCE and 250 CE

 

On War and Wars (James Howard Kunstler)
Russia Won’t Play By ‘Rules’ Invented By Anyone – Putin (RT)
Lavrov Points To Failed US-led Attempts To Isolate Russia (TASS)
US Helping To ‘Kill Russians’ – Zakharova (RT)
Western Arms May Not Be Enough, Ukrainian Troops Tell NYT (RT)
ISW: Ukraine Can Expel Russian Troops From Country With Counteroffensives (Az.)
Reznikov: If Russia Capitulates, Ukraine Is Ready To Start Negotiations (Az.)
US Blackmails Nations Into Fighting Moscow And Beijing – Shoigu (RT )
Serbian President Vucic Vows Country Will Not Join NATO (TASS)
UK Allegedly Censored Report On British Neo-nazis Fighting In Ukraine (RT)
US Pushed To Disclose Number Of Troops In Ukraine (RT)
Increasingly Frenetic Diplomatic Maneuvering Reshapes World Order (Bordachev)
Ukraine Looking To Grab More Of Russia’s Oil Revenues – Kommersant (RT)
Fewer Heterosexual Teens Than Ever – CDC (RT)
You Can’t Taper A Ponzi Scheme (John Rubino)
Government Vaccine Mandate Efforts Were Secretly Funded by Pfizer (Slay)

 

 

 

 

Macgregor China
https://twitter.com/i/status/1651690488502665216

 

 

Dunham Biden
https://twitter.com/i/status/1652003123479625732

 

 

 

 

Megyn Kelly Tucker

 

 

Putin Russian jews

 

 

RFK climate

 

 


“Russian T-14 “armata” tanks that were sent to the zone of special military operations in Ukraine are equipped with modern weapons and can be invisible to the enemy, writes the British newspaper “The Sun”. “Russian experts have produced special camouflage coverings ‘mantles’ for T-14 tanks, which absorb radar waves and at the same time repel and disperse them,” the article states.”

 

 

“Let’s hope Europe does not become again the slaughterhouse it was in the last century.”

On War and Wars (James Howard Kunstler)

Ukraine is the last in a string of hapless military adventures that has exhausted America’s credibility in the world, especially as regards our military superiority. (Think: Russia’s Kinzhal hypersonic missile.) There will be many unexpected consequences of that failure. One will be the crack-up of NATO, which has only been a false front for American military power. Germany couldn’t fight its way out of a duffle bag with what it’s got, and it is supposedly Europe’s leading economic power. The sad truth is that it will stop being any kind of power without the cheap Russian Natgas it was running on, and later this year Germany will be in a panic to try and restore its horribly damaged trade relations with Russia to get that natgas. Since NATO’s essential mission is to oppose Russia on everything, that will be the end of NATO. Europe will return to what it has always been: a region of squabbling national interests. Let’s hope Europe does not become again the slaughterhouse it was in the last century.

The failure of the Ukraine project could easily stimulate a collapse in Europe’s banking system, which would instantly spread to America’s banking system as obligations dissolve and payments stop. The net effect of all that will be the vanishing of a whole lot of capital, including the money in bank accounts, the money invested in stocks and bonds, the money lodged in pension plans, and the money controlled by insurance companies. As I’ve mentioned before — it’s worth repeating — you can go broke two ways: you can have no money, or you can have money that’s worthless. We’ve been steadily following the latter path through the “Joe Biden” years, but we’re close to simply not having money at all. Being broke will get Americans’ attention. And the first place they’ll look is the party in power.

\Multiple scandals have finally caught up to “Joe Biden” and are escaping the formidable suppression apparatus erected by the Deep State’s legal department. Attorney General Merrick Garland himself is now directly implicated in obstruction of justice by an IRS whistleblower. The allegation is that Mr. Garland interfered in the case against Hunter Biden in the Delaware US attorney’s office and lied about it to Congress. On top of that comes a new allegation, with hard documentary evidence (testimony by former Acting CIA Director Mike Morell), that Secretary of State Antony Blinken and National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan arranged, as “Biden” campaign officials in 2020, for fifty-one intel officers, including five retired CIA directors, to sign a phony letter denouncing the Hunter laptop as a Russian disinfo project, knowing it to be untrue. A case can be made for that amounting to election interference.

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“We are not going to crawl under the covers with them. But we’re not going to follow their rules either.”

Russia Won’t Play By ‘Rules’ Invented By Anyone – Putin (RT)

Moscow will not abide by the “so-called rules” invented and imposed by “certain countries,” Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Friday, as he delivered a speech at a meeting of Russia’s Council of Legislators in St. Petersburg. Russia is currently enduring “economic aggression” from the collective West, Putin stated, urging the legislators, as well as other branches of the country’s authority, to work proactively rather than try to “wait out” this difficult period. The ultimate goal is creating a “basis for the long-term, independent, and successful development of our country,” he emphasized. The international diplomacy system has eroded greatly as of late, with “certain countries” imposing their own “rules” instead, Putin noted. “Our partners, or, one might say, already former partners, in some countries are maniacally destroying the legal framework and channels of communication, trying to impose their views and so-called rules on everyone. What are the rules? … Nobody saw them,” he stated.


“They’re writing something under the covers and they themselves are doing something with that under the covers. We are not going to crawl under the covers with them. But we’re not going to follow their rules either.” At the same time, Russia does not want to go into “self-isolation” and remains ready to cooperate fairly with “friendly countries,” Putin explained. “We will expand pragmatic, equal, mutually beneficial, exclusively partnership relations with friendly countries in Eurasia, Africa, and Latin America.” He noted that Russia has “many like-minded people” in the countries of the collective West, including the US. “Yet, the elites behave differently. But you and I know that the elites of these countries do not always pursue a policy aimed at the best interests of their own people. This will come around to haunt them,” he warned.

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“..some 85% of the world’s population are reluctant to pull the chestnuts out of the fire for former colonial powers..”

Lavrov Points To Failed US-led Attempts To Isolate Russia (TASS)

Efforts by Washington and its satellites to isolate Moscow are failing completely, with the global majority being unwilling ‘to pull the chestnuts out of the fire’ for former colonial powers, said Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. Addressing the online Global Conference on Multipolarity on Saturday, Russia’s top diplomat said, “It seems only natural that efforts by Washington and its satellites to reverse the course of history and force the international community to live up to a ‘rules-based world order’ have failed. I will only mention the completely failed course toward isolating Russia that the Westerners have been pursuing.”


“The majority of countries inhabited by some 85% of the world’s population are reluctant to pull the chestnuts out of the fire for former colonial powers,” he added. Ahead of the conference, the Russian Foreign Ministry pointed out that the event would once again make it possible to heed politicians, public dignitaries, journalists, and academic and cultural figures from around the world, who stand up for multipolarity, and for fairer and more democratic inter-state relations.

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“The Russian people are getting killed with targeting done by the US, money [provided] by the US, weapons [supplied] by the US, and by the hands of a regime that was brought to power by the US ..”

US Helping To ‘Kill Russians’ – Zakharova (RT)

The US is directly contributing to the deaths of Russians by providing military and financial aid to Ukraine, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova claimed on Friday. She was reacting to a Kommersant interview with Lynne Tracy, the US ambassador to Moscow, who stated that Washington “does not view Russians as enemies.” “The Russian people are getting killed with targeting done by the US, money [provided] by the US, weapons [supplied] by the US, and by the hands of a regime that was brought to power by the US as a result of a coup orchestrated by the US,” Zakharova wrote on Telegram, referring to the Western-backed 2014 uprising in Kiev that ousted the democratically elected president, Viktor Yanukovich.

In an interview published in Russian newspaper Kommersant on Thursday, Tracy said she supports informal contacts between Americans and Russians, and that the US “does not want to ‘cancel’ the Russian people in any way.” “No matter what differences we, the United States, have with the Russian government, they are not differences with the people of Russia,” she said. The Foreign Ministry later issued a statement criticizing the ambassador’s interview, in which it accused Tracy of cherry-picking and fabricating facts about Ukraine’s recent history. The US diplomat claimed that “a situation in which a leader who lost support and got scared of his own people takes a decision to flee” could not be called a coup.

“Madam Ambassador probably does not know and was not informed by her aides that this simple puzzle… lacks the truth and correct sequence of events,” the ministry said. The statement went on to explain that the protests in Kiev were infiltrated by violent extremists supported by US officials, and ended with a power-sharing agreement that the opposition forces immediately broke. Tracy’s failure to acknowledge the nature of the events in Kiev can be explained by either amnesia or ignorance, while her description has nothing to do with reality, the Russian ministry added. The statement included a screenshot of the interview with a large red ‘FAKE’ stamp on it.

Washington imposed sweeping sanctions on Moscow shortly after Russia launched its military operation in Ukraine in February 2022. The US and many other NATO countries have since supplied Kiev with heavy weapons, including tanks and artillery systems, and shared intelligence with Ukraine. The State Department said in January that it was up to Kiev to determine how to use foreign arms. Russia has warned that the military aid makes the US and NATO de facto direct participants in the conflict. Moscow also repeatedly accused Ukraine of using US-made weapons, such as HIMARS multiple rocket launchers and M777 howitzers, to kill civilians. On April 13, Ukrainian troops used HIMARS launchers to shell a hospital in the Donbass city of Svatovo, local officials said. On Thursday, several areas in the Donetsk People’s Republic were hit with rockets and artillery rounds, leaving one woman dead and eight people, including four children, injured, according to the authorities.

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“We lost our best people – those who died and those who were taken out of the fight because of injuries..”

Western Arms May Not Be Enough, Ukrainian Troops Tell NYT (RT)

Ukrainian troops on the frontline are concerned that even with all the military assistance from the US and its allies, their Russian opponents still have an advantage, The New York Times has reported. “I don’t know where the Russians are getting so much artillery,” a 43-year-old private named Pavel, who is deployed near the Donbass city of Ugledar, told the US newspaper. “And there are also tanks, helicopters, and jets. The guys can’t get in and out of their positions, the firing is so heavy,” he complained. “We can’t go up against them with rifles. We need heavy equipment on the ground and support in the air.” Kiev is expected to launch a counteroffensive against Russia within weeks, utilizing tanks, armored vehicles, and other heavy weapons provided by Western nations.

Ukrainian Defense Minister Aleksey Reznikov said on Friday that his troops were ready to push forward when the order comes from the military leadership. A company commander, who uses the callsign Dolphin, told NYT that his men had high morale and wanted to go on the offensive, despite the numbers not being in their favor. “We lost our best people – those who died and those who were taken out of the fight because of injuries,” he said of the unit’s recent action against Russian forces. “But there is one but,” he added. “There are more of them, but we’re stronger.”

Another fighter, a 23-year-old sergeant by the name Michael, described a lack of training in operating Western weapons. He is the only one in his company who knows how to properly use a US-made Mk-19 grenade launcher, the article said. “At the time it entered into service with the Ukrainian armed forces, there were no instructors who could explain how to work it,” he said. “The manuals were only in English and in the Ukrainian military few speak English.” Michael, according to NYT, has five years of experience with grenade launchers and is sharing it with others. Moscow cited the creeping expansion of NATO into Ukraine and a growing threat to Russian national security stemming from it, as one of the key reasons for launching its military operation in February 2022.

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The Institute for the Study of War is this war’s go-to think tank in media all over. They should really be called the Institute for the Promotion of War.

ISW: Ukraine Can Expel Russian Troops From Country With Counteroffensives (Az.)

Enabling further successful Ukrainian counteroffensives will deny the Kremlin a breather to replenish its resources, will further deplete Russia’s offensive potential, and eventually enable Ukrainian forces to expel Russia from Ukraine, said the US Institute for the Study of War (ISW), Report informs. According to ISW, the Kremlin’s plan for a quick war has failed: “The Kremlin’s ability to sustain a long war in Ukraine is not a given — it disproportionately depends on whether Russia gets the time and space to rebuild its capabilities. Russia’s ability to reconstitute its military capability is currently constrained. The Kremlin invaded Ukraine with insufficient resources which it has further exhausted to secure only limited gains. The Kremlin is trying to replenish its resources but is still pursuing half-measures below full national mobilization to regenerate its forces and mobilize its defense industrial base.”


The ISW noted that Russia may be weakened but the Kremlin’s intent regarding the US and NATO remains the same: “Russia not only seeks to eradicate Ukrainian statehood, but also to control other states in the region, such as Belarus and Moldova, and eventually link Russian military gains across the former Soviet Union. Putin still seeks to neutralize NATO and undermine the US. The Kremlin is rallying Russian society for a long fight against the West.

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Resnikov is minister of Defense.

Reznikov: If Russia Capitulates, Ukraine Is Ready To Start Negotiations (Az.)

Oleksii Reznikov: If Russia agrees to capitulation, Ukraine is ready to start negotiations, Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov said at a press conference, Report informs via UNIAN. According to him, the partners do not discuss the issue of peace: “Because they know very well that Ukraine will not talk to the current Russian leadership. However, negotiations on the capitulation of Russia and the payment of reparations are possible.”

Bakhmut

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“The goal of the US and its allies is to undermine the emerging multipolar world and preserve their dominance..”

US Blackmails Nations Into Fighting Moscow And Beijing – Shoigu (RT )

Washington resorts to various forms of coercion as it pushes to create regional alliances aimed against its geopolitical rivals, including Moscow and Beijing, Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu has said. He was speaking to his counterparts representing other members of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) at a meeting in New Delhi. “Unprecedented pressure is being applied to independent nations through the use of open blackmail, threats, ‘color revolutions,’ coups, and dissemination of blatant disinformation. All those tools long ago became the Western calling card,” the minister said on Friday. The goal of the US and its allies is to undermine the emerging multipolar world and preserve their dominance, according to Shoigu.

Washington chose to dismantle the system of global security in pursuit of its ambition and withdrew from multiple treaties with Russia, the minister told his audience. Shoigu said that Moscow had attempted to defuse tensions with NATO through diplomacy in 2021, but its proposals were rejected by the West, proving that it is unwilling to have a partnership of equals with Russia. “Today, Washington and its accomplices are executing a strategic plan to provoke other nations into military confrontation with the states they don’t like, primarily Russia and China.” The minister interpreted the Ukraine conflict as a vivid example of American “criminal policy.” The US goal in it is to “inflict a strategic defeat on Russia, create a threat to China and preserve its [hegemonic] position,” said Shoigu.

The official blasted Western supplies of weapons to Kiev, stating that they only prolong hostilities and create additional risks to Europe and the entire world. He said the arms “make their way to the black market and further into the hands of terrorist organizations.” The SCO, a Eurasian intergovernmental organization, includes China, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan among its members.

https://twitter.com/i/status/1651888112916922370

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“Serbia will painstakingly maintain its military neutrality and defend its freedom on its own. This is our choice..”

Serbian President Vucic Vows Country Will Not Join NATO (TASS)

Serbia’s President Aleksandar Vucic has promised the Serbs that the country will not join NATO as long as he remains the head of state. “Serbia today is one of the few countries with its own policies. It’s independent and free-thinking,” Vucic said while addressing a crowd of local residents in Sokobanja on Friday. “As long as I am president, and this will [last] another four years, and as the commander-in-chief, I guarantee you that Serbia will not join NATO or any other military bloc.” “Serbia will painstakingly maintain its military neutrality and defend its freedom on its own. This is our choice,” Vucic concluded. Earlier, Vucic stressed that Western representatives in their calls on Serbia to join NATO were referring to a global threat from Russia. Vucic stated separately that his country could not join the alliance because “NATO threatened” Belgrade. In particular, he added that it was representatives of the West that “intruded into Serbia’s territory” and were killing its people.

Don’t underestimate Orban
https://twitter.com/i/status/1651971665973108740

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“US Customs and Border Patrol warned in a memo that “Ukrainian nationalist groups including the Azo[v] Movement are actively recruiting racially or ethnically motivated violent extremist-white supremacists to join various neo-Nazi volunteer battalions.”

UK Allegedly Censored Report On British Neo-nazis Fighting In Ukraine (RT)

A British intelligence report on the global threat of right-wing terrorism includes a completely redacted section on ‘returning foreign fighters’ from an unnamed European country, highly likely to be Ukraine. Published last July, the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament’s report on ‘Extreme Right-Wing Terrorism’ gave British lawmakers an overview of the threat posed by right-wing radicals at home and abroad. Drawn from material provided by Britain’s multiple intelligence agencies, including MI5 and MI6, the report totals 130 pages and includes detailed sections on right-wing violence in northern Europe and North America. However, one section that follows those on northern Europe and the US and Canada is entirely redacted, its six paragraphs replaced by asterisks.

A semi-redacted paragraph beneath offers some further context. It states that British intelligence officers are concerned that “There is no process in place to monitor those ‘G***’ individuals who have travelled overseas for Extreme Right-Wing Terrorism-related purposes and have returned to the UK. It notes that “there is a strong possibility that these returning foreign fighters, some of whom may have fought ***, will have been further radicalised” while in the unnamed country, and will have “developed connections with others who share their Extreme Right-Wing ideology.” “There is little doubt that for *** we are talking about interesting details of the situation in one of the countries of Eastern Europe,” Russian journalist and Kremlin critic Max Solopov wrote on Telegram on Thursday.

“Especially considering that the UK is the most involved country in the Ukrainian conflict after Russia.” Extremist ideology in Ukraine was covered extensively by the Western media before the start of Russia’s military operation last February. White supremacists from Germany, the US, UK, Scandinavia, and elsewhere traveled to Ukraine from 2014 onwards to join the neo-Nazi Azov militia, which would go on to be formally integrated into the Ukrainian military. When the trickle of foreign fighters into Ukraine increased to a deluge last year, US Customs and Border Patrol warned in a memo that “Ukrainian nationalist groups including the Azo[v] Movement are actively recruiting racially or ethnically motivated violent extremist-white supremacists to join various neo-Nazi volunteer battalions.”

“What kind of training are foreign fighters receiving in Ukraine that they could possibly proliferate in US based militia and white nationalist groups?” the document asked, noting that this was an “intelligence gap” faced by US law enforcement at the time. Shortly before Russia’s military operation began, UK counterterrorism police were deployed to British airports to question people traveling to Ukraine. According to The Guardian, officers were looking to identify “far-right extremists” seeking weapons training and military experience. Such reports have since vanished from the Western media, replaced by stories sympathetic to foreign volunteers and articles downplaying the Azov Regiment’s neo-Nazi roots.

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“a partisan political ploy” that endangers the national security of the US, its allies in Europe, and “the courageous Ukrainian people.”

US Pushed To Disclose Number Of Troops In Ukraine (RT)

A resolution demanding President Joe Biden and the Defense Department inform Congress of troop deployments in Ukraine and plans for future military aid was approved on Friday by the Foreign Affairs Committee of the US House of Representatives. The committee voted along party lines, 22-20, in favor of the proposal by Congressman Matt Gaetz, a Florida Republican. Gaetz called the vote a “big win for accountability” and accused Democrats of being afraid of “truth and transparency on aid to Ukraine.” Under the terms of his privileged resolution, the White House and the Pentagon would have 14 days to send the House “copies of all documents indicating any plans for current or future military assistance to Ukraine and documents indicating whether any US Armed Forces, including special operations forces, are currently deployed in Ukraine.”

During the debate on the resolution, earlier this week, members of Biden’s party accused Gaetz of serving the interests of Russian President Vladimir Putin, “amplifying Russian propaganda” and threatening the bipartisan consensus in Congress that support for Ukraine must be “unwavering and indefinite.” Congresswoman Kathy Manning, a North Carolina Democrat, called the resolution “divisive and ill-advised” as well as “a partisan political ploy” that endangers the national security of the US, its allies in Europe, and “the courageous Ukrainian people.” Her colleague Gerry Connolly of Virginia accused Gaetz of wanting to force a peace on Kiev, and argued that there might be a time for oversight, “but now is not that time.”

Florida Republican Cory Mills, a military veteran, countered that the resolution was not against supporting Ukraine, but ensuring there is no “mission creep” like with Afghanistan or Iraq, where he spent a total of ten years and got “blown up twice.” Proposing the resolution earlier this month, Gaetz pointed to the leaked Pentagon documents to accuse Biden of “misleading the world on the state of the war in Ukraine” and demanding “total transparency” when it came to risking “war with a nuclear adversary.” The resolution now goes to the House floor, where Republicans have a slim majority. However, a significant faction within the party agrees with the Democrats and the White House on unconditional support for Kiev.

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“Perhaps the current changes are the most significant in the last few hundred years.”

Increasingly Frenetic Diplomatic Maneuvering Reshapes World Order (Bordachev)

There is no doubt that the world is undergoing a major transformation. Perhaps the current changes are the most significant in the last few hundred years. This is all the more so, because never before in the history of international politics has it involved so many actors with different historical and cultural backgrounds. This means that we are not talking about another redistribution of power within a limited circle of states, but about a much broader phenomenon. In practice, however, these sweeping changes have led to a highly paradoxical situation: Diplomacy is heavily influenced by tactical maneuvering rather than strategic considerations. This is particularly evident in Western behavior, but most others are no exception. Even the actions of powers such as China or Russia, which in many ways are genuine examples of diplomatic conservatism, show signs of contextual concerns.

But what about small and medium-sized countries, especially those that have become known for their skillful tactics in making the most of ambiguous international situations? In other words, it is not only the leading states, which are really the ones who will determine the composition of the new world order, but also the smaller opportunists who are now in a constant state of maneuvering. In popular analysis, the capacity for continuous jostling for position is now generally regarded as an attribute of medium-sized states occupying an intermediate geopolitical position, but it is the large countries that are the true masters of this genre. Western Europe, despite its long-term commitment to transatlantic relations, is certainly in the lead. The major powers of the European Union, acting in their personal capacity or under the guise of submissive European institutions, are in a state of permanent maneuvering: In relations with China, Russia or the rest of the so-called world majority, in addition to constant bargaining in relations with their powerful patron, the US.

For the rest of the world, it creates the illusion that the EU can one day break away from Washington and sail on relatively independently. And for the Americans, it creates few additional concerns, but nothing that threatens their monopoly on power. French President Emmanuel Macron’s visit to Beijing in the first half of April was certainly an example of such posturing. The French leader sought in every way to reinforce the perception among his Chinese counterparts that continental Europe could act, at least tactically, as more than just a territorial base for US interests. This was partly due to the economic opportunities that make cooperation with the Western Europeans beneficial for Beijing and the Chinese economy. It is also due to the persistent Chinese belief that Germany and France are acting so hardline towards Russia precisely because they do not believe that a conflict with Moscow would have dramatic consequences.

A confrontation with China, which the EU states are being gently nudged towards by the UK and the US, would indeed be a suicidal economic decision for the bloc. Especially in the current not-so-pleasant state of the socio-economic systems of most of “old Europe.” The reluctance of EU members to give up the benefits of cooperation with China was evident to all in Beijing during an earlier visit by German Chancellor Olaf Scholz. Moreover, Beijing quite rationally believes that the conflict between the West and Russia is more fundamental for the EU than the confrontation between the US and China. Our Chinese friends are well aware of the history of relations between Russia and Western Europe, and they know that hostility is rooted in European bloc capitals. Despite some positive experiences with Russia in an era of its comparatively EU-friendly behavior, the major countries of the bloc have their grievances with Moscow, perhaps even more seriously than those of Japan, another American ally.

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Russia will not pay this, the EU will.

Ukraine Looking To Grab More Of Russia’s Oil Revenues – Kommersant (RT)

Kiev is preparing to significantly increase tariffs for transporting Russian crude oil to the EU through its territory via the Druzhba pipeline, business daily Kommersant reported on Friday. According to the report from the Russian outlet, which cites the consultancy Argus and market sources, Ukrainian pipeline operator Ukrtransnafta has applied for a two-step increase in transit prices, by 25% from the current $14.90 per ton to $18.70 on June 1, and by an additional 23.5% to $23 on August 1. Transneft, Russia’s state pipeline transport company, confirmed to Kommersant having received notification from Ukrtransnafta of the tariff hike but said that it was not conducting negotiations with Kiev on the matter.

According to Kommersant’s sources, Ukraine is currently negotiating the hike directly with buyers in Slovakia, Hungary, and the Czech Republic. However, any arrangements with them will have to be formalized with the Russian Energy Ministry and Transneft, experts say. The latter traditionally pays in advance for the transit of Russian oil through Ukrainian territory. The transit cost is included in the price of oil deliveries, and Russian oil companies, having received payment from buyers, reimburse Transneft for the transit. The planned hike in transit costs will be the second this year, after Kiev raised the tariff by €2.10 per ton (18.3%) on January 1. Prior to that, the tariff was hiked twice last year.

Experts warn that overly frequent tariff hikes may bring oil transport via Druzhba to a halt, as buyers, despite not having many alternatives to Russian oil, may find the costs too high. According to Igor Yushkov, a professor at the Financial University under the Government of the Russian Federation, this scenario would hurt Ukraine, which relies on the transit fees. Druzhba carries crude some 4,000km from Russia to refineries in the Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Poland, and Slovakia. Supplies via the route were not targeted by the EU embargo on Russian crude that was introduced late last year.

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Propaganda or endocrine disruptors?

Fewer Heterosexual Teens Than Ever – CDC (RT)

A new report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has found that a quarter of US high school students identify as homosexual, bisexual, or ‘questioning’, a figure that has more than doubled since 2015. Based on data collected in 2021 and released on Thursday, the CDC’s report found that 72.4% of high schoolers identify as heterosexual, down from almost 90% in 2015; 3.2% identify as gay or lesbian, 12% identify as bisexual, and 9% as ‘other’ or ‘questioning’. Girls were more likely than boys to place themselves in all three categories, with five times as many female students considering themselves bisexual (20% vs. 4%), and four times as many (13.7% vs. 3.7%) listing themselves in the ‘other’ category.

The CDC noted that the increase “might be a result of changes in question wording,” explaining that answers like “I am not sure about my sexual identity” or “I describe my sexual identity in some other way” were not included in its previous questionnaires. Just over 7% of the US adult population identifies as LGBTQ, according to a Gallup poll published in February. This figure has risen with each passing generation, with 20% of Generation Z (those born between 1997 and 2004) identifying as LGBTQ, compared to 11.2% of Millennials, 3.3% of Generation X, 2.7% of Baby Boomers, and 1.7% of those born before the end of World War II. The number of transgender Americans, which the CDC survey did not measure, has exploded. Fewer than 0.05% of the Silent Generation (born between 1928 and 1945) identified as transgender in the Gallup survey, compared to 1.9% of Generation Z, an almost forty-fold increase.

Some commentators argue that increased acceptance of alternative sexualities has made each successive generation more comfortable with coming out as LGBTQ. Others claim that “social contagion” – in which young people embrace LGBTQ identities in order to fit in with their peers – is responsible. A study published earlier this month found that adolescent girls with transgender friends were more likely to come out as transgender themselves. The study also linked heavy social media use to transgender identification. Although more and more high school students are embracing alternative sexualities, fewer and fewer are sexually active. According to CDC data, the number of students who have ever had sex has fallen from 47% in 2011 to 30% in 2021, while the number who said they were currently sexually active fell from 34% to 21% in that same period.

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“..during the entire fiat currency era, M2 has never before gone down. This means some debts won’t be paid..”

You Can’t Taper A Ponzi Scheme (John Rubino)

In a normal fiat currency system, the central bank simply creates the needed currency out of thin air, everyone gets paid, and the resulting decline in the value of the currency is small enough that few are bothered. But that’s not what’s happening today. As the above obligations come due, the amount of available money is … shrinking. The following chart of the M2 money supply growth rate shows a massive spike from all the covid lockdown stimmy checks (which partially accounts for last year’s surge in consumer prices) and a correspondingly dramatic plunge this year. Note that during the entire fiat currency era, M2 has never before gone down. This means some debts won’t be paid. Creditors thus stiffed will fail to pay their debts and so on until sectors start blowing up. Think back to last month’s local and regional bank near-death experience for a relatively benign example of what this unraveling will look like.

To sum up, the current global financial system is a Ponzi scheme and the new money spigot has been turned off. Excitement is about to ensue. During the pandemic, central banks discovered how easy it is to flood an economy with newly-conjured cash. The US, for instance, simply mailed checks to citizens and gifted “loans” to small businesses while tossing trillions in loan guarantees and direct aid at favored large corporations. Easy peasy. When today’s Ponzi scheme starts to unravel, those same governments will be faced with a choice between letting virtually everything grind to a halt as trouble at the collapsing periphery starts heading for the core (that is, as small players die in ways that threaten JP Morgan Chase), or restarting the stimmy check machine, but on a much bigger scale and with a major twist:


Instead of sending out paper or electronic checks to individual bank accounts, the Fed will roll out its much-discussed central bank digital currency and fund “free” account balances for everyone who it deems worthy of such a gift. The vast majority, traumatized by the disappearance of their jobs and stock portfolios, will willingly accept the free money. And just like that, the next financial system is born. Which, as always, takes us back to gold and silver. History says the first phase of this process will feature an equities bear market that takes precious metals down for the ride. But in the second phase (i.e., the CBDC introduction), people who prefer not to own “programable” currency that’s monitored 24/7 by the NSA will convert their Fed bucks to real assets. Shortages of gold and silver will ensue and prices will respond accordingly.

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A carefully crafted campaign.

Government Vaccine Mandate Efforts Were Secretly Funded by Pfizer (Slay)

Pharmaceutical giant Pfizer was secretly funding pressure groups that pushed governments to introduce draconian vaccine mandates and passports, according to a bombshell new report. The report, from investigative journalist Lee Fang, reveals that Pfizer silently funded several groups advocating for vaccine mandates and passports. Pfizer’s COVID-19 shot is one of the most widely used vaccines in the world. Under vaccine mandates, people around the world the forced to take the jabs or face losing their jobs. In August 2021, the president of the Chicago Urban League, Karen Freeman-Wilson, in an interview on TV, argued that vaccine mandates would not disproportionately harm the black community. “The health and safety factor here far outweighs the concern about shutting people out or creating a barrier,” Freeman-Wilson said at the time.

Earlier that year, the Chicago Urban League had received $100,000 from Pfizer. The money was supposedly for a project to advance the promotion of “vaccine safety and effectiveness.” Part of this “promotion” involved lobbying governments to introduce tyrannical vaccine mandates. The organization did not list Pfizer as a donor or partner on its website. Freeman-Wilson did not mention the funding during the interview, either. The Chicago Urban League grant is one of many Pfizer-awarded groups to promote and encourage vaccine mandates. The pharmaceutical giant awarded grants to public health organizations, civil rights groups, as well as consumer, medical, and doctors’ groups. Most of these groups did not disclose the funding from Pfizer. The lack of transparency regarding the grants allowed Pfizer to secretly fund efforts to force the public into using their products.

In August 2021, the corporate watchdog group the National Consumers League announced support for “government and employer mandates” requiring Covid vaccination. The announcement came at around the same time the organization received a $75,000 grant from Pfizer for “vaccine policy efforts.” Houston-based public health organization the Immunization Partnership publicly lobbied against bills introduced in Texas aimed at banning vaccine passports and vaccine mandates. The organization did not disclose that Pfizer gave it $35,000 earlier that year for “legislative advocacy.”

Japan Pfizer

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1.27259146ºC
https://twitter.com/i/status/1651852516554932224

 

 


This is the Centennial Light, the world’s longest-lasting light bulb, burning since 1901. It is at 4550 East Avenue, Livermore, California and due to its longevity, the bulb has been noted by The Guinness Book of World Records

 

 

Gecko

 

 

 

 

 

 


Blue tit singing on a cold early morning you can see its song in the air

 

 

Armadillo

 

 

DogTwist
https://twitter.com/i/status/1652035202171146241

 

 

Logging
https://twitter.com/i/status/1651949402335084545

 

 

 

 

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