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Iranian Lawmakers Set to Summon President Rouhani Over Economic Woes, Nuclear Deal

Sputnik – 06.07.2020

On Sunday, Iran’s president accused the country’s foreign enemies of mounting a “complicated psychological operation” targeting Iran’s currency, the rial, saying that the action was aimed at undermining the Islamic Republic’s move toward an economy that’s free of dependence on oil exports.

A group of 120 lawmakers from Iran’s 290-member Islamic Consultative Assembly parliament have signed a motion to question President Hassan Rouhani over economic difficulties facing the country, as well as Europe’s failure to implement the 2015 nuclear deal, Tasnim News Agency has reported.

“The lawmakers have various questions for the president, including the reasons behind the foreign exchange market crisis as well as the high cost of basic goods and basic necessities of the people today,” Eqbal Shakeri, a lawmaker from Tehran, was quoted as saying.

Other concerns include the disruption of the housing market, inflationary pressures, and lack of loan support for enterprises. A third block of questions asks why the European powers are not committed to fulfilling their obligations under the nuclear deal while demanding that Iran fulfills its commitments, and whether or not it may have been a mistake for Iran to sign on to the nuclear deal which the US so easily and painlessly withdrew from in 2018. … Full article

In Syria’s Hasakah, SDF militants, backed by US, hinder food delivery

Press TV – July 6, 2020

The alliance of the anti-Damascus Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), consisting mainly of Kurdish militants supported by Washington, has impeded the delivery of flour to a bread facility in the northeastern province of Hasakah.

Syria’s official news agency SANA reported on Monday that the delivery had been meant for the Baath bread facility in the city of Qamishli.

The militants keep denying Syrian government trucks, carrying flour and other basic necessities, access to the area, the report said. Over the past few days, the SDF militants have stolen 45 tons of flour from mills in the province.

The security situation is reportedly deteriorating in the areas controlled by the SDF in Hasakah and the province of Dayr al-Zawr as the militants continue arresting civilians. … Full article

Veteran activists called out BLM as a tool of the Democrats from day 1. But agenda-driven $Millions drown out the grassroots

By Helen Buyniski | RT | July 6, 2020

The Black Lives Matter movement has made millions off black Americans’ suffering. A St. Louis activist explains how it comes from a long tradition of white liberals coopting grassroots movements to push a Democratic Party agenda.

The foundation-funded social justice activism of Black Lives Matter is using black pain to cash in on white liberal guilt, dividing American society in pursuit of a Democratic political agenda, St. Louis activist Nyota Uhura told RT.

Uhura founded her website handsupdontshoot in August 2014 to counter false narratives coming out of the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson following the police shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown.

Having witnessed BLM’s rise up close as the nascent organization swooped into Ferguson amid the calls for justice triggered by Brown’s killing, methodically co-opting the genuine protest energy while ignoring or even obstructing those protesters’ demands, Uhura has fought to warn others of what the organization really represents – leveraging black activism into a boost for the Democratic Party. … continue

“Woke” America is More Asleep to Injustice Than Ever

PepsiCo and Mars Sponsor/Profit From Slavery and Mass Murder 

By Tony Cartalucci – New Eastern Outlook – 06.07.2020

To drive home just how superficial and empty recent protests in America are and how little besides further division and destruction will become of them – take the fate of two fictional characters recently put in the spotlight by baying activists – PepsiCo’s “Aunt Jemima” breakfast food brand and Mars Incorporated’s “Uncle Ben’s” rice products.

Both came into the crosshairs of “woke” America. Both fictional characters will now no longer be used.

It might appear like a huge victory for “woke” America. … continue

US ‘Made-Up’ Claims of Russia-Taliban Collusion Aim to Derail Peace Process, Group Says

Sputnik – 06.07.2020

Late last month, The New York Times, citing anonymous US intelligence sources, published an article claiming that Russian military intelligence offered bounties to Taliban-linked militants for attacks on American soldiers in Afghanistan and that US President Donald Trump had been informed about this.

The Taliban believes that claims of its collusion with Russia were made up by intelligence services in Kabul and are aimed at derailing the Afghan peace process, Suhail Shaheen, an official representative of the movement’s political bureau in Qatar, said on Monday.

“We continue our own investigation based on the information in the media. these accusations are false, they are groundless and were launched by an intelligence agency in Kabul to derail and postpone the peace process as well as the formation of a new government,” Shaheen said. … Full article

BOUNTYGATE: Scapegoating Systemic Military Failure in Afghanistan

By Scott Ritter | Consortium News | July 5, 2020

The story of the alleged “bounty scheme” grew up in the context of top U.S. brass blaming Russia for America’s defeat in Afghanistan, says Scott Ritter. – Read article

CIA Information Warfare Succeeds: Occupation of Afghanistan forced to continue, Trump’s real crimes in Afghanistan ignored

By Ben Barbour | Global Research | July 5, 2020

On July 1st the House Armed Services Committee voted to hinder Donald Trump’s ability to withdraw troops from Afghanistan. House Democrats on the committee teamed up with Republicans, including Liz Cheney (daughter of war-architect Dick Cheney), to pass an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act “that prohibits Congress from spending money to pull US troops out of Afghanistan without first meeting a series of vague conditions that critics said appeared to prevent withdrawal.” Without any public debate the US will now continue its occupation after the CIA claimed that Russia paid Taliban-linked groups to kill American soldiers. … continue

Are the Democrats a Political Party or a CIA-Backed Fifth Column?

By Mike Whitney • Unz Review • July 5, 2020

How do the Democrats benefit from the nationwide Black Lives Matter protests?

While the protests are being used to paint Trump as a race-bating white supremacist, that is not their primary objective. The main goal is to suppress and demonize Trump’s political base which is comprised of mainly white working class people who have been adversely impacted by the Democrats disastrous free trade and immigration policies. These are the people– liberal and conservative– who voted for Trump in 2016 after abandoning all hope that the Democrats would amend their platform and throw a lifeline to workers who are now struggling to make ends meet in America’s de-industrialized heartland.

The protests are largely a diversion aimed at shifting the public’s attention to a racialized narrative that obfuscates the widening inequality chasm (created by the Democrats biggest donors, the Giant Corporations and Wall Street) to historic antagonisms that have clearly diminished over time. (Racism ain’t what it used to be.) The Democrats are resolved to set the agenda by deciding what issues “will and will not” be covered over the course of the campaign. And– since race is an issue on which they feel they can energize their base by propping-up outdated stereotypes of conservatives as ignorant bigots incapable of rational thought– the Dems are using their media clout to make race the main topic of debate. In short, the Democrats have settled on a strategy for quashing the emerging populist revolt that swept Trump into the White House in 2016 and derailed Hillary’s ambitious grab for presidential power.continue

The Case Is Building That COVID-19 Had a Lab Origin

By Jonathan Latham, PhD and Allison Wilson, PhD | Independent Science News | June 2, 2020

… If the Shi lab has anything to hide, it is not only the Chinese Government that will be reluctant to see an impartial investigation proceed. Much of the work was funded by the US taxpayer, channeled there by Peter Daszak and the EcoHealth Alliance. Virtually every credible international organisation that might in principle carry out such an investigation, the WHO, the US CDC, the FAO, the US NIH, including the Gates Foundation, is either an advisor to, or a partner of, the EcoHealth Alliance. If the Sars-CoV-2 outbreak originated from the bat coronavirus work at the WIV then just about every major institution in the global public health community is implicated. … Read full article

Venezuela Sets Parliamentary Election Date, Increases Number of Lawmakers

By Ricardo Vaz | Venezuelanalysis | July 2, 2020

Mérida – Venezuela will hold elections for its National Assembly (AN) on December 6.

National Electoral Council (CNE) President Indira Alfonzo held a press conference on Wednesday to announce the timetable for legislative elections, which are constitutionally mandated to be held before the end of the year.

The timetable includes electoral registry sessions from July 13 to 26, with electoral candidates and lists to be presented from August 10 to 19 and the campaign held from November 21 to December 6. An extensive series of audits will begin on August 14 and extend to January 21, 2021.

Alfonzo added that dates are subject to adjustment due to the COVID-19 pandemic. … continue

Turkish troops, allied militants cut off drinking water to people in Syria’s Hasakah, environs

Press TV – July 5, 2020

Turkish military troops and allied militants have once again cut off drinking water supplies to about a million people living in and around the northeastern Syrian city of Hasakah by stopping a border water pumping station, a report says.

In an interview with Syria’s official news agency, SANA on Sunday, Director General of Hasakah Water Company Mahmoud al-Ukla said that Turkish soldiers and Ankara-backed militants stopped Alouk Water Station on Saturday evening and barred workers of the station from entering the facility.

The major water station is located in the vicinity of the border town of Ra’s al-Ayn, which Turkish troops and their allied militants seized in October 2019 during the so-called Peace Spring Operation.

Ukla warned that the inhumane move was threatening the lives of inhabitants of the city and its surrounding residential neighborhoods in northeastern Hasakah province.

He added that the criminal act came as the people of the affected areas are in the utmost need for the water from the Alouk station, the only source for guaranteeing the drinking water for them.

The water station has so far been forced to stop several times by the invading Turkish troops and their allied militants. … Full article

Israeli foreign minister: Israel taking any action to stop ‘Iranian nuclear threat’

Press TV – July 5, 2020

The Israeli foreign minister says the regime considers Iran’s nuclear abilities as an “existential threat” to itself, noting that Tel Aviv is taking any action to stop what he called “Iranian nuclear threat.”

Gabi Ashkenazi made the remarks on Sunday, a few days after a shed at Iran’s Natanz nuclear facility was damaged in an incident, whose cause has not been officially declared yet.

Natanz is a uranium enrichment center located near a city of the same name in central Isfahan Province, some 250 kilometers (155 miles) south of the capital, Tehran.

The center is among the sites now being monitored by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) under a 2015 nuclear deal, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) between Tehran and major powers.

On Thursday morning, one of the sheds under construction in the open area of ​​the site suffered damage following an incident, which caused no casualties and did not affect the activities at the complex, according to the spokesman for the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) at the time.

Israeli top diplomat, whose remarks were quoted by Jerusalem Post, further said, “We have a long-term policy over the course of many administrations not to allow Iran to have nuclear abilities.”

Therefore, Ashkenazi added, “We take actions that are better left unsaid.” … Full article

Israeli Settlers Invade Town near Jenin, Threaten Palestinians near Hebron

By Ali Salam | IMEMC | July 5, 2020

Illegal Israeli settlers, Friday night, stormed areas south of Jenin, in the northern West Bank, the Palestinian WAFA News Agency reported.

Local sources said the invasion prompted confrontations between Palestinian civilians who resisted the invasion, and illegal settlers who were protected by soldiers.

Israeli forces provided cover for the colonists by firing concussion grenades and tear-gas canisters at the Palestinians. No injuries were reported.

Concurrently, Friday evening, illegal Israeli colonists stormed the Wadi al-Husain area, east of Hebron city, and threatened Palestinian civilians, the Palestinian Information Center reported.

Local sources said that a group of illegal colonists stormed the streets of Wadi al-Husain and shouted death and expulsion threats at the residents.

Israeli Forces Shoot, Injure Seven Palestinians in Abu Dis

By Ali Salam | IMEMC | July 5, 2020

Israeli forces injured 23 Palestinians during an invasion into the town of Abu Dis, east of occupied Jerusalem, on Friday evening, according to the Palestinian Red Crescent Society (PRCS).

Soldiers stormed Abu Dis town, which elicited resistance among the local Palestinian civilians. The army used live rounds, rubber-coated steel rounds and tear-gas to disperse the protesters.

The PRCS said that one Palestinian was shot with live ammunition, and transferred to hospital for wounds sustained in the torso, no further details were reported.

Meanwhile, six Palestinians were shot and injured with rubber-coated steel rounds, three sustained burns, and thirteen suffered the toxic effects of tear-gas inhalation.

Reparations and Other Scams: Israeli Survivors Live in Poverty and Are Starving?

By Philip Giraldi | American Herald Tribune | July 5, 2020

The issue of reparations and other compensation has been much in the news of late, most particularly in relationship to possible payments to descendants of slaves in the United States to compensate them for their disadvantages brought about by what is claimed to be a persisting racist culture in the country. There is, of course, considerable resistance on the part of millions of non-black citizens who will have to foot the enormous bill even though they were not involved in slavery in any way, having arrived in the U.S. long after 1865, when involuntary servitude was abolished by the Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution. … continue

The Yemen Tragedy Continues

By Viktor Mikhin – New Eastern Outlook – 05.07.2020

Global opinion and leaders in many countries have reacted angrily to UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres’ decision to remove the Saudi Arabian military coalition in Yemen from a list of groups violating children’s rights. Antonio Guterres has taken this step only a few years after the coalition was first named and shamed for killing and injuring children in Yemen. Antonio Guterres said the coalition would be removed from the list covering violations of the rules about murder and mutilation “after a steady and significant reduction in the number of murders and mutilations resulting from air strikes” and following the implementation of measures aimed at protecting children. He said the coalition had killed or wounded only (?!) 222 children in Yemen last year, but that is merely the figure which international observers have been able to officially confirm.

For its part, the Yemeni press notes that the child death toll is at least ten times that figure, not to mention injuries, mutilations and displaced children. The Yemeni press notes that, unfortunately, some member states of the United Nations are trying to absolve Saudi Arabia of its crimes against Yemeni children and women, while, according to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, one Yemeni child is dying every ten minutes as a result of the war and Saudi coalition-imposed siege. There can be no doubt that this step by the UN and the position of its current Secretary General are evidence of its “selective approach” and “double standards” in relation to human rights. … continue

Moscow Denies US Allegation of Breach of Underground Nuclear Testing Moratorium

Sputnik – 04.07.2020

US Special Presidential Envoy for Arms Control Marshall Billingslea on 3 July called Russia’s next-generation Poseidon and Burevestnik, experimental nuclear-powered as well as nuclear-armed submarine and air missile systems, “terrible” and urged for their abolition, while citing allegations of a rise in radiation levels in northern Europe.

Moscow rejects the allegations of non-compliance with the Threshold Test Ban Treaty*, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement. The ministry went on to explain that the US claims regarding Russia’s alleged non-compliance with the 1974 treaty between the Soviet Union and the United States on limiting underground nuclear tests were built on completely false premises.

“Predictably, the US allegations that Russia has breached the moratorium on nuclear tests by conducting experiments that do not meet the US ‘zero-yield’ standard have not been supported by any evidence. Moreover, the US has admitted that it knows neither the number of such tests in 2019, nor whether they have been conducted at all”, the ministry spokesperson said. … continue

Dutch MH17 trial: Court to consider report from Russian missile producer that points to Ukraine as culprit

RT | July 4, 2020

A Dutch court investigating the downing of MH17 has agreed to hear from Almaz-Antey, a Russian arms manufacturer, which argues that the prevailing Western narrative – that rebels in eastern Ukraine shot down the plane – is false. … continue

Trump Aide Says People Who Leaked Partial Report on Taliban Bounties to NYT Will ‘Go to Jail’

Sputnik – 04.07.2020

A New York Times report claiming American intelligence agencies had information about Russia paying the Taliban for attacks on US forces has been denied by both countries’ governments, as well as by the American intelligence community itself. Despite this, the NYT has continued to publish articles based on the report, which is deemed fraudulent.

White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows has vowed that those who leaked a confidential report to The New York Times that was used to draft its recent articles regarding Taliban attacks on American troops will be found and “go to jail” for their crimes. Meadows, who made his statements during an interview with former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, noted that the people behind the leak had manipulated the report, withholding certain parts of it.

“Whoever leaked this — they didn’t even leak the whole story. […] We know a crime was perpetrated. We’re determined to get to the bottom of it. They’re serious about the investigation”, the top White House official said.

Meadows went on to stress that he expects more stories like the one recently published by The New York Times, as the presidential election is drawing close. … Full article

US used media agency to covertly aid Hong Kong protesters, but tell us how ‘foreign meddling’ is a threat to ‘our democracy’

By Nebojsa Malic | RT | July 3, 2020

Even as Washington designated the Chinese media as a hostile foreign agent, its own propaganda agency was funneling money to the Hong Kong protesters. In a fitting twist, this was revealed by partisan leakers with an ax to grind.

“US has been exposed for funding last year’s Hong Kong protests,” declared columnist Alex Lo in the South China Morning Post on Thursday. Lo brings up the revelation that one of the subsidiaries of the US Agency for Global Media (USAGM) had to freeze an estimated $2 million worth of contracts aimed at helping anti-Beijing activists in the southern Chinese city.

The source for this is a recent Time magazine article, relying mainly on anonymous USAGM officials upset about the overhaul implemented by the agency’s new head, Michael Pack, an appointee of President Donald Trump, confirmed by the Senate in early June.

The contracts in question were run through the Open Technology Fund, officially an NGO that funds “open-source internet freedom projects” such as the encrypted-messaging app Signal. All of its funding comes from Congress, just like the National Endowment for Democracy, which spent around $643,000 to “foster civil society” in Hong Kong last year.

Given that whoever pays the piper calls the tune, Beijing sees this as direct US meddling in the unrest in Hong Kong – a territory ruled by the British for over a century before being handed back to China in 1997. The city erupted in protests last spring, over a law that would allow extraditions to the mainland. When demonstrators began waving US and British flags, meeting with US diplomats and getting aid from ‘NGOs,’ they gave China a perfect excuse to pass a new security law.

Now imagine the US reaction if Chinese ‘nonprofits’ funded entirely by the government were funneling money to ‘human-rights’ programs in the US, or Black Lives Matter, or Antifa, or any of the groups going around smashing monuments and torching shops across America over the past month. … continue

Israel Conducts Gas-Field Exploration on Lebanon Border: New Negotiations or Attempt to Start a War?

Sputnik – 04.07.2020

The Israeli government has approved gas exploration in the Alon D block, located along block 9 of the Mediterranean shelf – a disputed maritime area. Lebanon and Israel contest that area of the shelf, while both sides consider it a part of their exclusive economic zone.

Lebanese President Michel Aoun previously stated that such actions by Tel Aviv could be very dangerous, and Lebanon will not allow encroachment on its own economic zone in the Mediterranean.

Experts claimed to Sputnik that Israel is trying to get Lebanon back to the negotiating table, especially in light of Beirut’s ongoing economic and domestic political weakness.

Lebanese political science expert Faisal Abdel Sattar sees the Israeli actions as an attempt to escalate relations with an obviously weak side that is experiencing a serious crisis.

“It was precisely at a time of internal chaos and unrest, when US policy was pushing Lebanon, when the lyre was falling unprecedentedly, that Israel announced the start of gas exploration right near the disputed waters. This is clearly an attempt to exacerbate the situation. Let me remind you that Lebanon and Israel have not demarcated their maritime borders”, he said.

The Lebanese expert stressed that Lebanon’s position on the issue remains unchanged.

“Israel seems to be just seeking to further mess things up in the Lebanese crisis. But Lebanon will not allow anyone to take advantage of the situation, and will respond accordingly to Israeli provocations”, he stated. … continue

If US attempts to seize Iranian tankers carrying oil to Venezuela now, de-escalation will be more difficult than ever

By Scott Ritter | RT | July 3, 2020

To expand its “maximum pressure” sanctions campaign targeting Iranian oil and the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Command, the US has a warrant to seize the cargo of four tankers heading to Venezuela. We should expect the worst.

Just weeks ago, in May and June, the world watched with bated breath as Iran dispatched five tankers carrying cargoes of gasoline and chemicals desperately needed by the Venezuelan nation, starved as it was of the ability to refine its own gas, due to the US’ stringent economic sanctions. While protesting the move, Washington did nothing to stop it, beyond sanctioning the ships involved. In what appears to be a replay, the Iranian government has now engaged four ships – the Bella, Bering, Pandi and Luna – to deliver approximately 1,163,000 barrels of gasoline to Venezuela.

In an effort to prevent this, the US government sought, and obtained, a federal forfeiture warrant on the grounds that the sale of the cargo violates the law regarding economic activity conducted by or on behalf of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Command (IRGC), previously designated by the US as a foreign terrorist organization. The Iranian government has condemned the issuing of this warrant as an act of piracy. … continue

If It Were So Urgent, Why Didn’t Haspel Demand an Oval Office Meeting?

By Joe Lauria | Consortium News | July 3, 2020

The safety of U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan does not appear to be the motive in intelligence agency leaks to the media about the alleged Russian “bounties,” says Joe Lauria. – Read article

Dershowitz defends Ghislaine Maxwell by citing friendship with Clintons

RT | July 4, 2020

Alan Dershowitz has penned a staunch defence of Ghislaine Maxwell following her arrest by the FBI. But his touting of her friendship with the Clintons as evidence of her character has left many incredulously scoffing.

The famous lawyer penned an op-ed for The Spectator in which he sought to set out his own relationship with Jeffrey Epstein’s alleged madam and argue that she must be presumed innocent.

Dershowitz, who has himself faced accusations of involvement in Epstein’s sex ring, explains that he was first introduced to the British socialite by a member of the Rothschild family and when he subsequently met her, on “several occasions”, she was in the presence of esteemed people such as Nobel Prize winners, university presidents and even Bill and Hillary Clinton.

The irony of citing the Clintons as character references for a person accused of misconduct relating to sex didn’t go unnoticed… continue

US Ambassadors Trigger Anti-American Sentiments, Cui Prodest?

By Vladimir Platov – New Eastern Outlook – 04.07.2020

On more than one occasion recently, New Eastern Outlook has featured, as have other media outlet publications, what kind of “love” US ambassadors have merited in many countries owing to their behavior and genuinely aggressive countenance, which no diplomatic status can conceal.

The publications in media outlets are more frequently expressing the scandals linked to US ambassadors and all the new protests erupting against them in various countries.

Starting in December on a regular basis, protests against Ambassador Harry Harris – who is insulted by saying that he “resembles a Japanese colonial governor” – take place in front of the US embassy building in South Korea.

This is not the first month that authorities and society in Germany have openly expressed their dissatisfaction with the actions taken by Richard Grenell, the US ambassador to their country, right up until the time he recently left Germany. … continue