Aletho News


Current News and Analysis

Being on Parler & Gab cost New York literary agency employee her job… after one Twitter complaint

RT | January 27, 2021

Internet commenters have decried the rise of social justice-fueled intolerance, after a woman was purportedly fired from her job simply for having accounts on conservative-leaning social media platforms.

Colleen Oefelein, an associate literary agent with the New York City-based Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency, was sacked after her boss learned that she owned accounts on Gab and Parler. The agency’s owner, Jennifer DeChiara, publicly announced on Twitter that the firm had dropped Oefelein after making the “distressing” discovery.

“We do not condone this activity, and apologize to anyone who has been affected or offended by this,” the message read. DeChiara stressed that her agency was committed to ensuring a “voice of unity” and was firmly “on the side of social justice.” … continue

6 Warning Signs from Biden’s First Week in Office

By Kit Knightly | OffGuardian | January 27, 2021

It’s been a busy first week for the 46th President [sic] of the United States, there are the 20,000 troops occupying the capitol city to organise, as well as the totally unprecedented show-trial of his immediate predecessor.

You know, usual democracy type stuff.

On top of that, Biden has now signed at least 37 executive orders in his first week. The record for any President, and more than the previous four presidents combined.

What do these orders, or any of his other moves, tell us about the future plans of the recently “elected” administration? Nothing good, unfortunately. … continue

Proud Boys Leader Was ‘Prolific’ FBI Snitch: Court Docs

By Tyler Durden | Zero Hedge | January 27, 2021

While US officials claim that ‘far-right extremism’ is one of the largest threats facing America, the leader of the group most commonly singled out as an example – the Proud Boys – was a ‘prolific’ informant for federal and local law enforcement, according to Reuters, citing a 2014 federal court proceeding.

Enrique Tarrio repeatedly worked undercover for investigators following a 2012 arrest, court documents reveal.

Curiously, Tarrio was ordered to stay away from Washington D.C. one day before the January 6 Capitol riot after he was arrested on vandalism and weapons charges – upon a request by government prosecutors that he be prohibited from attending. At least five Proud Boys members were charged as part of the riot.

In the 2014 hearing, a federal prosecutor, an FBI agent and Tarrio’s attorney describe his undercover work – noting that the Proud Boys leader helped authorities prosecute over a dozen people in various cases involving drugs, gambling and human smuggling, according to Reuters. … continue

Signal, the ‘encrypted messenger of the future,’ has shady links to US national security interests

By Kit Klarenberg | RT | January 27, 2021

If the sudden popularity of the encrypted messenger Signal has seemed suspicious to you, you may be onto something – the app is at least partially funded through American foreign influence cutouts.

On January 4, WhatsApp announced sweeping changes to its privacy policies, affecting the vast bulk of its approximately two billion users globally.

The poorly explained rules were interpreted by many as proof that the messaging service was about to commence sharing users’ private data, including their conversations, with parent company Facebook, and in response millions the world over began flocking to alternative messaging services that offered end-to-end encryption.

The most common destinations for WhatsApp exiles were, and remain, Signal and Telegram. For reasons unclear, while available figures suggest the latter has to date received many orders of magnitude more fresh arrivals than the former, corporate news outlets have overwhelmingly focused on Signal’s surging intake.

Much of this coverage has been highly approving – for instance, The Guardian published a lengthy explainer on January 24 titled “Is it time to leave WhatsApp, and is Signal the answer?” The headline was answered very much in the affirmative, to the extent that readers were offered advice on persuading their contacts to likewise make the switch. … continue

YouTube is Taking Censorship to Next Level by Scrubbing ‘Dislikes’ from Biden Videos

By Kyle Becker | January 22, 2021

Big Tech giants are doing nothing to ease concerns about their active interference on behalf of Biden in the U.S. election.

If anything, these overly powerful companies are continuing to show whom they have been all along — partisan activists attempting to hide the truth from the American people.

One bizarre and recent development is the scrubbing of social media ‘dislikes’ from videos on Youtube.

The Biden administration has been getting absolutely hammered on its video uploads. […]

Youtube is removing some of the heavy dislikes for Biden, who ran a no-show campaign that garnered over 81 million votes, and is now entering office with one of the lowest approval ratings on record.

Everything makes perfect sense.

Numerous observers noted there appears to be scrubbing of dislikes: “The technocrats overlords are going to censor and “correct” absolutely everything now. YouTube dislikes, comments, whatever. If they are willing to fake the vote they are willing to fake everything.” – Full article

‘Where is the line between global business & attempts to control society?’ Putin asks Davos, calling out Big Tech

RT | January 27, 2021

Technology giants have become powerful rivals to governments, but there are doubts over the benefits for society of their monopoly positions, Russia’s President Vladimir Putin told the annual World Economic Forum, on Wednesday .

“Where is the line between a successful global business, in-demand services and consolidation of big data – and attempts to harshly and unilaterally govern society, replace legitimate democratic institutions, restrict one’s natural right to decide for themselves how to live, what to choose, what stance to express freely?” Putin wondered.

“We’ve all seen this just now in the US. And everybody understands what I’m talking about,” he added. … continue

CNA Nursing Home Whistleblower: Seniors Are DYING LIKE FLIES After COVID Injections!

By Brian Shilhavy | Health Impact News | January 26, 2021

James (he gives his last name in the video) is a CNA (Certified Nursing Assistant), and he recorded this video as a whistleblower because he could not keep silent any longer.

James reports that in 2020 very few residents in the nursing home where he works got sick with COVID, and none of them died during the entire year of 2020.

However, shortly after administering the Pfizer experimental mRNA injections, 14 died within two weeks, and he reports that many others are near death.

The video is long (47 minutes), and it is clear that James is suffering from emotional stress, and he admits that he has nothing to gain from going public, and that he will probably lose his job for doing so.

But he makes it very clear that these were patients he knew and cared for (he is also a “lay pastor”), and that after being injected with the mRNA shot, residents who used to walk on their own can no longer walk. Residents who used to carry on an intelligent conversation with him could no longer talk. … continue

Iran’s Security Chief Receives Taliban Delegation: US Seeks Continuation of Bloodshed in Afghanistan

Al-Manar | January 27, 2021

Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council Ali Shamkhani on Wednesday, warned of the US’ attempts to drag out war and bloodshed in Afghanistan, saying Washington seeks to put the blame for insecurity on the Afghan parties.

“The US is not after peace and security in Afghanistan. The US’ strategy is the continuation of war and bloodshed among various Afghan strata,” Shamkhani said in a meeting with a political delegation of the Taliban, led by deputy head of the group’s political office Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, held in Tehran on Wednesday.

“The US is pursuing the peace negotiations show with the purpose of creating a deadlock in the negotiations among various Afghan parties in order to blame them for insecurity and instability,” the Iranian official stated, as quoted by Tasnim news agency. … Full article

Iraqi MPs outraged by US decision to review troop drawdown

Press TV – January 27, 2021

Iraqi parliamentarians have given fiery responses to a decision coming out of Washington to review the previous US administration’s plan to draw down the number of American forces in the Arab country.

Iraq’s Arabic-language Baghdad Today news agency reported the reactions that were issued by MPs Hassan Shaker al-Ka’abi, head of the Badr parliamentary bloc, and Mukhtar al-Mousavi, representative of the Fateh Alliance, to which Badr is affiliated, on Wednesday.

The US’s new Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said during his confirmation hearing last week that he was to reexamine the plan announced by the administration of former president Donald Trump for reducing the number of troops in Iraq and Afghanistan each to 2,500. … continue

Biden regime’s coercive Iran policy threatens serious new regional crisis


A close analysis of recent statements by members of President Joseph Biden’s foreign policy team indicates his administration has already signaled its intention to treat negotiations with Iran as an exercise in diplomatic coercion aimed at forcing major new concessions extending well beyond the 2015 nuclear agreement. The policy could trigger a renewed US-Iran crisis as serious as any provocation engineered by the Trump administration.

Although the Biden team is claiming that it is ready to bring the United States back into the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) if Iran comes into full compliance first, it is actually planning to demand that Iran give up its main source of political leverage. Thus, it will require Iran to cease its uranium enrichment to 20 percent and give up its accumulated stockpile of uranium already enriched to that level before the United States has withdrawn the economic sanctions that are now illegal under the JCPOA deal.

Meanwhile, the Biden team is planning to hold on to what it apparently sees as its “Trump card”— the Trump administration’s sanctions against Iran oil exports that have gutted the Iranian economy.

But the Biden strategy faces a serious problem: Iran has already demanded all sanctions imposed after the JCPOA took effect must be ended before Iran would return to compliance. Iran expects the United States, as the party which initially broke the agreement, to come into compliance first. … continue

Iran-Turkey railway aims for 1M tons of cargo in 2021

MEMO | January 27, 2021

Roughly 1 million tons of cargo are to be transported via rail between Turkey and Iran this year, Turkish authorities said Tuesday, reports Anadolu Agency.

The Transport and Infrastructure Ministry said in a statement that a recent memorandum of understanding signed in a gathering of railway representatives in Turkey’s capital Ankara on January 12-13 would open a new era for the transit railway.

Despite the novel coronavirus pandemic, three train services were run daily between Turkey and Iran in 2020, transporting 564,000 tons of cargo, according to the statement.

The statement also announced that freight trains would also run between Turkey and Pakistan via Iran on a common tariff between the three countries. It added that talks are still ongoing to set this tariff.

With a recently completed railway between Iran and Afghanistan, it will now also be possible to transport freight between Turkey and Afghanistan. … Full article

Israeli Forces Demolish Mosque in Masafer Yatta

Palestine Chronicle | January 27, 2021

Israeli forces Wednesday demolished a mosque in the Bedouin community of Azwadeen, east of Yatta city, south of Hebron, according to the Palestinian news agency WAFA.

Coordinator of the Protection and Steadfastness Committees, Fuad al-‘Amour, told WAFA that Israeli forces escorted bulldozers into Khirbet Umm Qassa in the Bedouin community of Azwadeen, in what is called the Eastern Slope, where the heavy machinery tore down the mosque, reducing it to rubble.

The demolition was carried out less than two weeks after soldiers posted demolition notices against the mosque and a local school, which serves 50 students from three marginalized communities, purportedly for being built without licenses.

Meanwhile, soldiers seized a tin-sheet health unit in Khirbet al-Rakiz hamlet in Masafer Yatta.

Masafer Yatta is a collection of almost 19 hamlets that rely heavily on animal husbandry as the main source of livelihood. … Full article

Settlers attack Palestinian shepherds, their cattle in Kisan village

Palestine Information Center – January 26, 2021

WEST BANK – A horde of extremist Jewish settlers on Monday savagely attacked Palestinian shepherds and their cattle in Kisan village in the east of Bethlehem.

Chief of the village Ahmed Ghazal said that settlers from the illegal settlement of Ibei Hanahal hurled stones at a group of Kisan shepherds and injured one of them.

Ghazal added that the settlers also unleashed their dogs on the shepherds and their cattle, which led to injuries among some of the sheep. … Full article

Soldiers Abduct Two Women, Elderly Man, From Bethlehem And Hebron

IMEMC | January 25, 2021

Israeli soldiers abducted two Palestinian women and an elderly man from the West Bank governorates of Bethlehem and Hebron on Monday evening.

The soldiers abducted Shireen al-A’raj, 49, in front of the District Court in occupied Jerusalem, after she was summoned for a court hearing.

The woman, from the al-Walaja village, west of Bethlehem, was ordered to appear in court after she returned to the West Bank despite an order banning her from entering the occupied territory for five years.

It is worth mentioning that Shireen is the aunt of Bassel al-A’raj, 31, who was killed by Israeli army fire on March 6, 2017.

Furthermore, the soldiers invaded Khashm ad-Daraj area, in Yatta town, south of the southern West Bank city of Hebron, before abducting an elderly man, identified as Mohammad Daoud al-Hathalin, in addition to a young woman who remained unidentified at the time of this report.

It is worth mentioning that approximately 1200 Palestinians live in Khashm ad-Daraj, and face difficult living conditions due to continued violations by Israeli soldiers, and the illegal colonialist settlers who frequently uproot their lands, and attack their cattle.

Earlier Monday, the soldiers abducted two Palestinians from Hebron, in southern West Bank, including one who was taken prisoner near Nablus, in the northern part of the occupied territory.

On Monday at dawn, the soldiers abducted eight Palestinians from the West Bank governorates of Ramallah and Bethlehem.

The US and Israel Playing their Cards in the Middle East

By Viktor Mikhin – New Eastern Outlook – 26.01.2021

Former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, now 97 years old and having long lost his sense of the reality of international affairs, recently unleashed a new idea, menacingly declaring that a return to the “spirit” of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal would lead to weapons spread throughout the Middle East. These comments came during an interview with Dennis Ross, who has advised several US presidents on the Middle East, at an online event hosted by the Jewish People Policy Institute.

In this regard, the former US Secretary of State may be reminded, if he has forgotten, that it is not Iran but Israel that has long brought the entire region to the brink of nuclear catastrophe, with the obvious guidance and assistance of the West in possessing nuclear weapons and their means of delivery. Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif called Israel the only regime in the region with a secret and undeclared nuclear weapons program that includes an actual nuclear arsenal, and called on Tel Aviv not only to recognize this fact, but also to abandon the deadly weapons that threaten all the peoples of the Middle East. … continue

Biden’s Interventionist Agenda

By Stephen Lendman | January 26, 2021

Biden/Harris regime interventionist dirty tricks began straightaway in office.

Russia was targeted last weekend by made-in-the-USA rent-a-mobs in Moscow, St. Petersburg and other cities — more of the same likely ahead.

Instead of extending an olive branch for improved bilateral relation, dirty business as usual took precedence.

Much the same in various forms is likely against China, Iran, Venezuela, and other nations free from US control. … continue

US attempts to destabilize region through supporting terrorism: Iraqi MP

Press TV – January 26, 2021

An Iraqi legislator has warned against the Unites States’ attempts to disrupt peace and security in the Middle East through supporting terrorism, saying Washington is even ready to set entire Iraq on fire so it can keep its military forces in the Arab country.

Karim Alaiwi, a legislator from the Fatah (Conquest) alliance and a member of the Security and Defense Committee in the Iraqi legislature, told Arabic-language Baghdad Today warned against the policies of new US President Joe Biden towards Iraq, reminding the government that Daesh terrorists started their activities during the reign of Democrats.

“The Daesh terror group became active during the former and current presidencies of the [US] Democratic Party. Washington’s policy is to disrupt security and stability in the Middle East, especially in Iraq,” Alaiwi said.

He added, “The United States has supported and financially sponsored most of terrorist operations in Iraq, and has protected leaders of the Daesh terrorist group in many parts of the country.”

The Iraqi lawmaker highlighted that there are areas in Iraq where Daesh is still active, saying Washington is preventing military flights over those regions. … continue

How the FBI Created Domestic Terrorism: 80 Years of Psychological Warfare Revealed

By Matthew Ehret | Strategic Culture Foundation | January 25, 2021 

Since it has become increasingly evident that a vast extension of the Patriot Act will soon be unveiled that threatens to re-define “the war on terror” to include essentially anyone who disagrees with the governing neoliberal agenda, it is probably a good time to evaluate how and why terrorism – domestic or otherwise – has tended to arise over the past century.

If, in the course of conducting this evaluation, we find that terrorism is truly a “naturally occurring phenomenon”, then perhaps we might conclude alongside many eminent figures of the intelligence community and Big Tech, that new pre-emptive legislation targeting the rise of a new conservative-minded domestic terrorist movement is somehow necessary. Maybe the censoring of free speech, and the surveillance of millions of Americans by the Five Eyes is a necessary evil for the sake of the greater good.

However, if it is revealed that the thing we call “terrorism”, is something other than a naturally occurring, self-organized phenomenon, but rather something which only exists due to vast support from western political agencies, then a very different conclusion must be arrived at which may be disturbing for some. … continue

Wisconsin Senate votes to kill governor’s statewide mask mandate & ALL Covid-related emergency orders

RT | January 27, 2021

Wisconsin’s Republican-controlled Senate has voted to end Governor Tony Evers’ face mask order, with lawmakers arguing the government overstepped its authority by extending emergency mandates without approval from the legislature.

The state Senate voted 18-13 to pass the joint resolution on Tuesday, deeming the Democratic governor’s emergency health orders “unlawful.” The bill applies not only to Evers’ most recent declaration last week, but to “all actions of the governor and all emergency orders” issued throughout the pandemic, including the statewide requirement for mask-wearing in public.

Wisconsin Republicans have blasted the emergency mandates as unconstitutional, with GOP state Senator Duey Stroebel arguing on Tuesday that “It is not ok or normal or inevitable or necessary to indefinitely suspend the lawmaking process.” … continue

Las Vegas Schools Forced To Reopen Amid Rash Of Student Suicides

By Tyler Durden | Zero Hedge | January 26, 2021

A surge of student suicides across Las Vegas has pushed the Clark County School District to reopen schools as soon as possible, according to NYTimes.

By December, eighteen students in the district had taken their own lives; an early-warning mental health system embedded within computers and tablets issued to students for remote learning received 3,100 alerts since schools shuttered their doors last March. […]

Efforts to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 across the country have led to drastic changes in the way children and teens learn and socialize.

Government data show a 24% increase in the number of children who arrived in emergency departments with mental health issues from mid-March through mid-October, compared with the same period in 2019.

Countrywide, tens of millions of students have been thrown into a new distance learning environment that has resulted in many extracurricular activities being canceled. Recreational spaces have closed, sports canceled, and playdates shifted to Zoom calls, resulting in many kids developing mental issues, especially in Clark County. … Full article

Coverup of What May Have Caused Hank Aaron’s Death?

By Stephen Lendman | January 26, 2021

Iconic baseball legend Hank Aaron had no reported signs of ill health when vaccinated for seasonal flu-renamed covid on January 5.

On January 22, he died, no cause of death indicated at the time. … continue

Scientific evidence on lockdowns suggests they don’t work. The places with the highest death rates all had them

By Malcolm Kendrick | RT | January 26, 2021

The history of medical interventions tells us that often the accepted way of doing things turns out to be dreadfully wrong. I fear this is going to be the case with this so-called Covid ‘cure’. … continue

“I do everything my TV tells me to do” – That’s why we’re hurtling towards the Great Reset


If the current pandemic of dictatorial tyranny sweeping across the world has taught us anything, it is that the majority of humanity has been so well trained to obey authority that it is now incapable of free thought and afraid to ask questions. Never before have we seen such docile conformance to words echoing from the speakers of a television screen as when the Prime Minister of the UK announced in March 2020 that he had “one simple instruction” for the British people… ”You must stay at home”. But Mr Johnson spoke through the ‘telescreen’, and the nation listened.

Within an instant the UK economy came to a halt, without question, all because a man, in a suit, on the TV said it should. … continue

Reflecting the Authoritarian Climate, Washington Will Remain Militarized Until At Least March

The idea of troops in US streets for an extended period of time – an extreme measure even when temporary – has now become close to a sacred consensus

By Glenn Greenwald | January 26, 2021

Washington, DC has been continuously militarized beginning the week leading up to Joe Biden’s inauguration, when 20,000 National Guard troops were deployed onto the streets of the nation’s capital. The original justification was that this show of massive force was necessary to secure the inauguration in light of the January 6 riot at the Capitol.

But with the inauguration over and done, those troops remain and are not going anywhere any time soon. Working with federal law enforcement agencies, the National Guard Bureau announced on Monday that between 5,000 and 7,000 troops will remain in Washington until at least mid-March.

The rationale for this extraordinary, sustained domestic military presence has shifted several times, typically from anonymous U.S. law enforcement officials. The original justification — the need to secure the inaugural festivities — is obviously no longer operative.

So the new claim became that the impeachment trial of former President Trump that will take place in the Senate in February necessitated military reinforcements. On Sunday, Politico quoted “four people familiar with the matter” to claim that “Trump’s upcoming Senate impeachment trial poses a security concern that federal law enforcement officials told lawmakers last week requires as many as 5,000 National Guard troops to remain in Washington through mid-March.”

The next day, APciting “a U.S. official,” said the ongoing troop deployment was needed due to “ominous chatter about killing legislators or attacking them outside of the U.S. Capitol.” But the anonymous official acknowledged that “the threats that law enforcement agents are tracking vary in specificity and credibility.” Even National Guard troops complained that they “have so far been given no official justifications, threat reports or any explanation for the extended mission — nor have they seen any violence thus far.” … continue

Unelected Biden/Harris Regime to Wage War on Civil Liberties

By Stephen Lendman | January 26, 2021

On Friday, White House press secretary Jennifer Psaki said the following:

The Biden/Harris regime “will confront (violent extremism) with the necessary resources and resolve (sic).”

“We are committed to developing policies and strategies (to) confront this threat (sic).”

Biden’s DNI will conduct a “comprehensive threat assessment, coordinated with the FBI and DHS on domestic violent extremism (sic).”

“As a part of this, the NSC will undertake a policy review effort to determine how the government can share information better about this threat, support efforts to prevent radicalization, disrupt violent extremist networks and more (sic).”

“(R)elevant parts of the federal government (will be involved) to enhance and accelerate efforts to address DVE (domestic violent extremism) (sic).”

“This focus (will address) evolving threats, radicalization, the role of social media, opportunities to improve information sharing, operational responses and more (sic).” … continue

When Fascism Comes, It Will Be Wearing a Mask

By Ron Paul | January 25, 2021

Almost immediately after his inauguration, President Joe Biden began creating new government dictates via executive orders. Many of these executive orders concern coronavirus, fulfilling Biden’s promise to make ramping up a coronavirus-inspired attack on liberty a focus of his first 100 days.

One of Biden’s executive orders imposes mask and social distancing mandates on anyone in a federal building or on federal land. The mandates also apply to federal employees when they are “on-duty” anywhere. Members of the military are included in the definition of federal employees. Will citizens of Afghanistan, Iraq, and other countries where US troops are or will be “spreading democracy” be happy to learn the troops shooting up their towns are wearing masks and practicing social distancing?

Another one of Biden’s executive orders forces passengers on airplanes, trains, and other public transportation to wear masks.

Biden’s mask mandates contradict his pledge to follow the science. Studies have not established that masks are effective at preventing the spread of coronavirus. Regularly wearing a mask, though, can cause health problems. … continue

‘Hall monitors’ for social media? Twitter launches ‘Birdwatch’ program, enlisting users to hunt down ‘misleading’ speech

RT | January 25, 2021

Twitter has launched a new feature, called “Birdwatch,” that relies on users of the social media platform to identify content that they deem misleading and post notes to provide “informative context” on the topic.

“We believe this approach has the potential to respond quickly when misleading information spreads, adding context that people trust and find valuable,” Twitter Vice President Keith Coleman said on Monday.

Birdwatch is starting out as a pilot project in the US only. During the pilot’s first phase, notes will only be visible on a separate Birdwatch website, where participants can rate the helpfulness of the user comments. Coleman said the company aims to eventually make notes visible directly on tweets, across all parts of the world, when there is consensus “from a broad and diverse set of contributors.”

Twitter has invited users to apply to become participants in the pilot project. They will be able to flag tweets with suspected misinformation through a drop-down menu.

However, many who have watched the company ramp up censorship of their voices and have seen similarly crowdsourced information sources, such as Wikipedia, manipulated – expressed skepticism over how alleged misinformation will be judged.

“Twitter is the last company I would trust to tell me what misinformation was,” journalist Barrett Wilson said. … Full article

Biden Justice Department investigates ITSELF on whether any employees tried to help Trump overturn election result

RT | January 25, 2021

The US Department of Justice (DOJ) is probing whether any current or former official tried to help overturn President Joe Biden’s election victory, apparently seeking to root out employees who lack loyalty to the new regime. … continue

Vaccine Critics Considered National Security Threats

By Stephen Lendman | January 25, 2021

Along with tens of millions of Trump supporters, are critics of hazardous seasonal flu-renamed covid vaccines the new red menace?

Truth-telling about vaccine dangers — especially experimental/unapproved covid ones — is falsely called anti-vaccine propaganda. … continue

WHO (finally) admits PCR test is potentially flawed

Second PCR memo in two months casts even more doubt on the “gold standard” of Covid diagnosis

OffGuardian | January 25, 2021

The World Health Organisation has released a memorandum which potentially completely undermines all the “pandemic” case numbers from all over the world.

On the 13th of January, they put out this memo, stating that a single positive PCR test should not be used for diagnosing Sars-Cov-2 infection. … continue

Cuomo Follows Newsom in Easing COVID Restrictions After Biden Inauguration

By Paul Joseph Watson | Summit News | January 25, 2021

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has followed Michigan, Chicago and California in announcing plans to ease COVID restrictions, prompting many conservatives to allege that the timing is political.

The Governor said in a press conference that the situation in relation to new cases and hospitalizations was improving, meaning lockdown measures could be relaxed soon.

“Cuomo didn’t give further details on what type of restrictions he might loosen or what cluster zones might be eliminated or changed,” reports “The state Health Department is reviewing data on the zones now and Cuomo said expects to have announcements in the coming days.” … continue

All Hail the Reopening!

By Jeffrey A. Tucker | AIER | January 25, 2021

What a glorious thing the reopening is! After nearly a year of darkening times, the light has begun to dawn, at least in the US.

Given how incredibly political this pandemic has been from the beginning, many people smell a rat. Is it really the case that the reopening of the American economy, particularly in blue states, is so perfectly timed? Do the science and politics really line up so well?

These are questions for another day. And for the record, my own opinion is that the loosening of restrictions is timed well with the relaxing of public disease fear, from whatever source, political or through exhaustion or through a shift in the media narrative. In any case, it doesn’t matter for now. What matters right now is that the astonishing destructiveness of lockdowns might be coming to an end.

For those of us inveighing against lockdowns for a full year, it’s truly been a remarkable week. Restrictions are being loosened or are going away. We are finally getting some truth about the carnage. And we are even starting to see some elected officials being honest with us. … continue

EU drops backing for Guaido as Venezuela interim president, Biden renews US support

RT | January 25, 2021

The EU’s 27 states have said they no longer recognize Juan Guaido as the interim president of Venezuela, despite a call by the European Parliament just days ago for the bloc’s governments not to downgrade his status.

After meeting in Brussels on Monday, the European Council said in a statement it “deeply regretted” that Venezuela’s legislative elections on Dec. 6, 2020 – where Guaido was ousted as head of parliament – were not held democratically.

While not recognizing Guaido as the legitimate head of state, the Council condemned the leadership of President Nicolas Maduro, claiming he had not helped to end Venezuela’s “profound political crisis” after his disputed re-election in 2018.

The council also called for the release of political prisoners and the safety of Maduro’s political opponents, including Guaido, who it described as a “privileged interlocutor,” while calling for the opposition to unite against the president.

Last week, US President Joe Biden’s administration affirmed its support for Guaido, with the new secretary of state, Antony Blinken, promising new “more effective” sanctions in a bid to remove Maduro from power.

Britain also backs Guaido as Venezuela’s leader, while on Thursday MEPs in Brussels had called for the European Council to do the same in a resolution passed by a majority of 391 votes to 114, but it ultimately failed. … Full article

Wa Post ‘Fact Checker’ Admits Team Will Not Bother Checking Biden Claims

By Steve Watson | Summit News | January 25, 2021

The Washington Post spent four years ‘fact checking’ everything President Trump said, and claimed most of it was lies. However, according to the fact checker in chief at the Post, the paper will not even bother to check what Joe Biden says. […]

Glenn Kessler of the Post, who was in charge of the ‘fact checking’ team, tweeted last week, claiming that the paper had found over THIRTY THOUSAND claims by Trump to be false.

In a recent appearance on CNN, Kessler explained that he won’t be leading any fact checking into Biden because “I assume the Biden presidency will be a lot like the Obama presidency, and that they will be responsive, and will be able to quickly back up what they’re saying.”

Over the weekend, Kessler claimed that when he asked the Biden administration to back up five statements in a recent speech, they came back to him immediately.

However, as Newsbusters points out, the documents Kessler received were “from liberal think tanks like the Brookings Institution, the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, and poverty analysts at Columbia University backed by liberal foundations like the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.” … Full article

Putin categorically rejects Navalny’s allegations that he owns luxurious billion-dollar palace on Russia’s Black Sea coast

By Jonny Tickle | RT | January 25, 2021

Russian President Vladimir Putin has denied owning any of the property featured in opposition figure Alexey Navalny’s ‘Putin’s Palace’ video, which claimed last week that the president owns an expensive mansion on the Black Sea.

“Nothing which is said in Navalny’s film to be my property belongs to me or my close relatives and never did,” Putin said in a conference call on Monday.

“I didn’t watch this film simply for lack of free time, but skimmed through clips that my assistant brought me,” the president noted.

On January 19, in a video that has now garnered over 86 million views, Navalny alleged that Putin owns an expensive private estate near Gelendzhik on the Black Sea coast. […]

Earlier, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov branded the accusation as “an outstanding myth.” … Full article

Russia rejects any closed-door discussion of Syrian chemical case at UN Security Council

Press TV – January 25, 2021

Russia’s permanent ambassador to the United Nations says Moscow will oppose any attempt to return to closed-door discussions on the purported use of chemical arms in Syria at the UN Security Council.

Vassily Nebenzia, the permanent representative of the Russian Federation to the UN, said on Monday that the United Kingdom, which will become the head of the Council for the month of February, has proposed to return to discussing Syria’s chemical case behind closed doors.

He added, in an interview with TASS news agency, that such discussions would be held “without video conference and also without the participation of the representative of Syria, but we’ll oppose that.”

“With our initiative, these sessions have become open, and we do not see why they should hide from the public community,” Nebenzia further said, as cited by Syria’s official SANA news agency. … continue

Three Syrian forces killed in terrorist attack

Press TV – January 25, 2021

Three Syrian soldiers have been killed in an attack launched by terrorists based in an area where American forces are deployed.

The attack occurred on a highway between Day al-Zawr and Palmyra at 13:40 local time on Sunday, Syria’s official news agency SANA reported.

The news agency cited a military source as saying that militants based in al-Tanf area in the province of Homs opened fire at a bus carrying Syrian soldiers in Al Malha-Al Shola area.

Ten soldiers were also wounded in the attack, the source added.

Syria has been gripped by foreign-backed militancy since March 2011. The Syrian government says the Israeli regime and its Western and regional allies are aiding the Takfiri terrorist groups that are wreaking havoc in the country. … Full article

Israeli occupation forces block maintenance work at Ibrahimi Mosque

Palestine Information Center – January 25, 2021

AL-KHALIL – Israeli occupation forces (IOF) prevented the workers of the al-Khalil Rehabilitation Committee from resuming the maintenance and restoration work at the Ibrahimi Mosque on Monday.

Sheikh Hefzi Abu Sneina, the director of the Ibrahimi Mosque, said that IOF blocked maintenance and repair works at the Ibrahimi Mosque under the pretext of not having a permit.

He pointed out that working inside the Ibrahimi Mosque is a prerogative of the Ministry of Endowments and Islamic Affairs in coordination with the Rehabilitation Committee.

“This is an attempt by the occupation and its settlers to impose their control over the Ibrahimi Mosque”, Abu Sneina added.

On Sunday and Thursday last week, IOF halted employees of the Rehabilitation Committee from entering the mosque and completing the restoration work under the same pretext.

On Saturday, IOF prevented the Al-Aqsa Rehabilitation Committee from carrying out maintenance and restoration work at the Aqsa Mosque in Occupied Jerusalem.

Spanish Court Dismisses Criminal Complaint against BDS Activists

Palestine Chronicle | January 24, 2021

The Provincial Court in Valencia, Spain, has definitively dismissed a criminal complaint against eight Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions activists who had questioned the invitation for Jewish American singer Matisyahu to take part in the Rototom Festival in 2015.

The Court’s decision has been praised by the European Legal Support Centre (ELSC), an NGO based in Amsterdam that defends and empowers the Palestine solidarity movement in Europe through legal means.

“This is another milestone victory for the right to freedom of expression for those who defend Palestinian rights in Spain,” said a spokesperson for the Centre.

The Court acknowledged in its hearing earlier this month that criticism of the Israeli government’s practices against the Palestinians does not constitute an incitement to hatred.

Objecting to a singer’s participation in a festival that is committed to respecting human rights, when the objections are based on his personal support for the practices of the State of Israel, the Court determined, is not a criminal act. It is, rather, reflective of a legitimate form of activism in support of Palestinian rights.

UK Labour’s recent hire shows ‘complete submission to Zionist lobby’, rights group says

MEMO | January 25, 2021

The UK Labour Party’s decision to appoint a former Israel spy to work in his social media team demonstrates its leaders “complete submission to the Zionist lobby”, a UK-based human rights group has said.

The Arab Organisation for Human Rights in the UK (AOHR UK) criticised the appointment of Assaf Kaplan, who worked as an analyst and officer in Unit 8200 of the Israeli Military Intelligence between 2009-2013, where he monitored, collected, and analysed information on all Palestinians, regardless of their status.

“Unit 8200 constantly breaches international laws and conventions, as it dates back to the period before the establishment of Israel when it was known as Shin Mem 2, which worked on collecting information for Zionist gangs that committed massacres against the Palestinians,” AOHR UK said.

“In September 2014, 43 officers published a letter revealing the filthy role of this unit and how the information it gathered led to the killing of thousands of innocent Palestinians, especially during the wars on the Gaza Strip.”

AOHR UK confirmed that Kaplan’s CV, as well as the past and present of this unit, are known to officials in the British Labour Party, thus raising many questions about the reasons behind his employment given the risks he poses to the security of the party

AOHR UK explained that as a result of his work, Kaplan should be in “prison, not the British Labour Party.”

The rights group went on to call on the leaders of the Labour Party and its supporters to reject this appointment.