Aletho News


NATO’s record 6,000-strong drills kick off in Estonia amid Ukraine tensions

RT | May 5, 2014

NATO’s three-week ‘Spring Storm’ drills, involving a record-breaking number of 6,000 troops, have begun in Estonia. For the first time, a cyber security team from France is participating in the military exercises.

“This year’s Spring Storm brings together a record number of allied troops – infantry from the Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment, soldiers from Latvia, soldiers from the 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team of the US army, as well as soldiers from Lithuania,” the Estonian Defense Ministry said in a statement.

In addition, Poland has sent three of its Sukhoi Su-22 attack aircraft and a division of missile defense system unit SA-8, which will be tasked with protecting an air base near Tallinn and the surrounding airspace.

Just like last year, the exercise also involves anti-aircraft personnel from Belgium.

The main goal of the military exercises is to assess the skills of the infantry battalions, rehearse cooperation between different units, and improve management methods of staff divisions, the ministry stressed.

The Spring Storm drills have been held annually in different parts of Estonia since 2003.

This year, military maneuvers will be held in 5 out of 15 Estonian counties, including southern and southeastern regions close to the border with Russia. The exercises are scheduled to finish on May 23.

Britain, France, and the US have been deploying troops to the Baltic region since April 29, a week ahead of the drills in Estonia. A day earlier, around 150 personnel of the US airborne division arrived in a military transport aircraft to Amari airbase. Upon completion of the maneuvers, the US Marines will remain in Estonia at least until the end of 2014.

Amid rising tensions in Ukraine, the UK and France deployed eight fighter jets to Lithuania and Poland to strengthen NATO air defense over the Baltic regions.

On May 2, a group of NATO ships arrived in the Lithuanian port of Klaipeda to “ensure regional security.”

Russia considers the increase of NATO forces so close to its border a provocation, and believes it is counter-productive in the struggle to de-escalate tensions in Ukraine.

On Monday, Russian Minister of Defense Sergey Shoigu called on his American counterpart, Chuck Hagel, to cool down the rhetoric over Ukraine and work together to defuse the situation.

May 5, 2014 Posted by | Militarism | , , , , , | 1 Comment

Claim: ‘Emitting greenhouse-gases could start uncontrollable ice-melt’

Uncorking East Antarctica yields unstoppable sea-level rise

The melting of a rather small ice volume on East Antarctica’s shore could trigger a persistent ice discharge into the ocean, resulting in unstoppable sea-level rise for thousands of years to come. This is shown in a study now published in Nature Climate Change by scientists from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK). The findings are based on computer simulations of the Antarctic ice flow using improved data of the ground profile underneath the ice sheet.

“East Antarctica’s Wilkes Basin is like a bottle on a slant,” says lead-author Matthias Mengel, “once uncorked, it empties out.” The basin is the largest region of marine ice on rocky ground in East Antarctica. Currently a rim of ice at the coast holds the ice behind in place: like a cork holding back the content of a bottle. While the air over Antarctica remains cold, warming oceans can cause ice loss on the coast. …  Full article


Meanwhile… back in reality:

Antarctic Sea Ice Blows Away Records In April

By Paul Homewood

Antarctic sea ice continues to set new records, with extent in April at the highest since measurements began in 1979.


Ice extent has also been above last year’s already high levels for most of this year.


Meanwhile, both GISS surface and UAH satellite datasets show the Antarctic has been much colder than usual recently.

May 5, 2014 Posted by | Deception, Science and Pseudo-Science | 1 Comment

US Government Begins Rollout Of Its ‘Driver’s License For The Internet’

By Tim Cushing | Techdirt | May 5, 2014

An idea the government has been kicking around since 2011 is finally making its debut. Calling this move ill-timed would be the most gracious way of putting it.

A few years back, the White House had a brilliant idea: Why not create a single, secure online ID that Americans could use to verify their identity across multiple websites, starting with local government services. The New York Times described it at the time as a “driver’s license for the internet.”

Sound convenient? It is. Sound scary? It is.

Next month, a pilot program of the “National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace” will begin in government agencies in two US states, to test out whether the pros of a federally verified cyber ID outweigh the cons.

The NSTIC program has been in (slow) motion for nearly three years, but now, at a time when the public’s trust in government is at an all time low, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST — itself still reeling a bit from NSA-related blowback) is testing the program in Michigan and Pennsylvania. The first tests appear to be exclusively aimed at accessing public programs, like government assistance. The government believes this ID system will help reduce fraud and overhead, by eliminating duplicated ID efforts across multiple agencies.

But the program isn’t strictly limited to government use. The ultimate goal is a replacement of many logins and passwords people maintain to access content and participate in comment threads and forums. This “solution,” while somewhat practical, also raises considerable privacy concerns.

[T]he Electronic Frontier Foundation immediately pointed out the red flags, arguing that the right to anonymous speech in the digital realm is protected under the First Amendment. It called the program “radical,” “concerning,” and pointed out that the plan “makes scant mention of the unprecedented threat such a scheme would pose to privacy and free speech online.”

And the keepers of the identity credentials wouldn’t be the government itself, but a third party organization. When the program was introduced in 2011, banks, technology companies or cellphone service providers were suggested for the role, so theoretically Google or Verizon could have access to a comprehensive profile of who you are that’s shared with every site you visit, as mandated by the government.

Beyond the privacy issues (and the hints of government being unduly interested in your online activities), there are the security issues. This collected information would be housed centrally, possibly by corporate third parties. When hackers can find a wealth of information at one location, it presents a very enticing target. The government’s track record on protecting confidential information is hardly encouraging.

The problem is, ultimately, that this is the government rolling this out. Unlike corporations, citizens won’t be allowed the luxury of opting out. This “internet driver’s license” may be the only option the public has to do things like renew actual driver’s licenses or file taxes or complete paperwork that keeps them on the right side of federal law. Whether or not you believe the government’s assurances that it will keep your data safe from hackers, keep it out of the hands of law enforcement (without a warrant), or simply not look at it just because it’s there, matters very little. If the government decides the positives outweigh the negatives, you’ll have no choice but to participate.

May 5, 2014 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance | , | Leave a comment

US Supreme Court Upholds Town Government Prayers

ACLU | May 5, 2014

WASHINGTON – The Supreme Court of the United States upheld today a New York town’s practice of starting town meetings with official sectarian prayer. The practice was challenged by residents of Greece, N.Y. who objected to hearing government prayers, the vast majority of which were expressly Christian invocations, as a condition of attending public meetings.

“We are disappointed by today’s decision. Official religious favoritism should be off-limits under the Constitution,” said Daniel Mach, director of the ACLU Program on Freedom of Religion and Belief. “Town-sponsored sectarian prayer violates the basic rule requiring the government to stay neutral on matters of faith.”

The American Civil Liberties Union filed a friend of the court brief supporting the residents of Greece.

“The constitutional requirement that church and state must be separated rests, in part, on the understanding that when government supports one religion over others, people who are not members of the favored religion are made to feel like outsiders by their government,” said Arthur Eisenberg, legal director of the New York Civil Liberties Union.

May 5, 2014 Posted by | Civil Liberties | , | Leave a comment

With Washington’s Syria Gambit in Tatters, Iran’s ‘Smart Power’ Strategy Working

By Flynt Leverett and Hillary Mann Leverett | Going to Tehran | May 4, 2014

One of the more persistent tropes in Western discourse about the Syrian conflict is that, by “siding with” the Assad government, the Islamic Republic of Iran has marginalized itself in regional affairs and squandered much of the soft power it had accumulated as the champion of regional resistance to Western and Israeli abuse. From the outset of the Syrian conflict, we have been critical of this view (and of the Western approach to Syria more generally). For three years, we have argued that Iran is an indispensable player in any serious effort to negotiate a political settlement in Syria—and that such a settlement will necessarily be reached between the Syrian government, headed by President Bashar al-Assad, and those elements of the opposition who understand that they cannot defeat Assad either on the battlefield or at the ballot box.  In other words, a political settlement may reform Syria’s current political order—but it won’t overturn that order.

Now, events of the ground are providing ever more abundant evidence that our analysis is correct.

Late last week, the Syrian government and opposition fighters in the city of Homs reached agreement on a ceasefire. Beyond a ceasefire, the agreement is drawn to let opposition fighters leave Homs for other rebel-held areas, effectively surrendering Syria’s third-largest city back to the government. Yesterday, the New York Times and other media outlets reported that, while the evacuation of opposition fighters had not yet occurred, the ceasefire in Homs is holding. If the agreement is fully implemented, the departure of opposition fighters from Homs would constitute another significant military advance by the government in its campaign against rebel forces—helping set the stage for Syrian presidential elections on June 3, with President Assad standing for a third term. 

One of the more striking things about this story is that, according to the Wall Street Journal, the talks between the Syrian government and opposition fighters that produced this agreement were “brokered by the United Nations and the Iranian Embassy in Damascus.” Western discourse about Syria wants to limit any discussion of a “peace process” in Syria to the Geneva process—but the United States and its Western partners have rendered the Geneva process utterly dysfunctional by their continued insistence on Assad’s departure as an essential precondition for a political settlement. By contrast, the Islamic Republic of Iran, by having a clear political strategy of supporting elections and by being willing to deal with all relevant players—even “a hard-line Sunni Muslim rebel group,” as the Wall Street Journal describes its interlocutors in Homs—is actually able to accomplish things on the ground in Syria.

So, which parties are in fact marginalizing themselves in regional affairs by unreservedly aligning themselves with one side—and refusing to have anything to do with the other side—in the Syrian conflict? At this point, it seems that the Islamic Republic of Iran is pursuing a much smarter and more effective strategy in Syria than the United States and its partners.

May 5, 2014 Posted by | Militarism | , , , | Leave a comment

Newly appointed Odessa police chief vows to revise release of anti-Kiev activists

RT | May 05, 2014

Addressing a pro-Kiev rally, Odessa’s new head of police spoke against ‘separatism’ and vowed to revise the earlier release of pro-autonomy activists.

Ivan Katerinchuk was appointed following deadly clashes and a fire on Friday that killed dozens in the southeastern port city.

Local media reported that a few hundred people attended the rally near the Odessa interior ministry on Sunday. Some of them were heavily armed with wooden and metal bats, chains, shields, and helmets.

Katerinchuk addressed the crowd with “Glory to Ukraine!,” to which they answered with the traditional “Glory to heroes!,” RT’s Irina Galushko reported from Odessa.

“We don’t ban anybody from peacefully demonstrating and expressing their opinions. But we are against those who are promoting separatism and the splitting of Ukraine. I think that is where we are united,” a YouTube video shows Katerinchuk saying in Ukrainian. “But that does not mean that we should break the law,” he added.

When speaking about the 67 released anti-government activists, he said that all will be investigated and it will be determined if they broke any laws.

He called on the Right Sector to exercise restraint and select individuals who will represent the group in order to easily communicate with it about further actions from police.

The new police chief received his position on Sunday, following Friday’s disastrous events in Odessa. After being appointed, he announced that the priority of police would be to avoid additional clashes.

The police chief was born in western Ukraine. He has worked with the police since 1983 and resigned from the force in 2010 after holding various leadership roles.

His last position was as police chief in Ukraine’s Chernigovskaya region, located in the northwest of the country.

A YouTube video from the Sunday rally shows one of the pro-Kiev leaders shouting, “Odessa must be cleared of Colorado beetles (a derogatory term for pro-autonomy activists) before May 8.”

The same video footage showed that one of the attendees of the rally was the same radical that was shooting at the windows of Odessa’s burning House of Trade Unions.

On Friday, dozens of people died in flames in Odessa, when radicals set ablaze the local House of Trade Unions with anti-government protesters trapped inside. The city is now in mourning for those who died, many of whom suffocated from smoke or jumped out of windows.

Around 100 people rallied in central Odessa on Sunday after blocking the local Interior Ministry department in a protest against the detention of anti-government activists following the tragic events on May 2. The protesters have been trying to prevent police from sending the detained, which reportedly include dozens of survivors of the Trade Unions House fire, to the regional court building.

On Sunday, Ukraine’s acting Prime Minister Arseny Yatsenyuk blamed Russia for being behind the Odessa violence. “What happened in Odessa was part of a plan by the Russian Federation to destroy Ukraine and its statehood,” Yatsenyuk said. “Russia sent people here to create chaos.”

The accusations were not backed up by any evidence. In fact, US ambassador to Ukraine Geoffrey Pyatt said on Sunday that his country does not have evidence linking Russia to the tragic events in Odessa.

“We don’t have evidence of the Russian role in what – the tragedy that transpired on Friday. Prime Minister Yatsenyuk used some very strong words today, talking about the role that he believes Russia played,” Pyatt said in a telephone interview with CNN. “And this is something that we hope an impartial and systematic investigation will be able to get to the bottom of very quickly.”

However, the diplomat added that “we certainly believe that Russia is exercising influence across eastern Ukraine.”

May 5, 2014 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Subjugation - Torture | , , | 1 Comment

Agent Provocateur In Kent State Massacre, Obama Regime Refuses To Look At New Evidence

May 5, 2014 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Deception, Progressive Hypocrite, Timeless or most popular, Video | , | Leave a comment

Provocation: Murky forces instigating Odessa violence?

RT | May 5, 2014

Video footage filmed during the bloody events in Odessa that claimed dozens of lives on Friday shows a more complicated picture, with provocateurs instigating the violence.

Ukrainian authorities blamed the pro-autonomy activists for starting the clashes that led to the tragic fire at the House of Trade Unions. The interior ministry stated that anti-Kiev activists attacked supporters of Kiev authorities before retreating to the building for shelter, and threw petrol bombs at the crowd triggering the fire.

Russia’s Channel One television reconstructed the chronological order of events using publicly available YouTube videos detailing what happened in Odessa on Friday.

It began with a football match between two teams – Chernomorets Odessa and Metalist Kharkov. Despite the high political tensions in the region, authorities still allowed the match to take place, realizing that a few thousand pro-Kiev football fans would be arriving to the city.

Following the match, around 1,500 supporters of the Kiev authorities and football ultras came together for a march in support of Ukraine’s unity. The rally was sanctioned by local authorities.

Nationalists made their way towards the center of the city chanting “Glory to Ukraine” and “Death to enemies,” as well as “Knife the Moskals (derogatory for Russians).” Some people in the group wore ultra-nationalist movement insignia. They were armed with chains and bats, and carried shields.

The violence started when the pro-Kiev crowd was met by what looked like anti-government activists. They were wearing St. George ribbons – identifying them as pro-autonomy – and red bands around their sleeves. Some of the riot police officers present at the scene were wearing the same red bands around their sleeves.


Image from

Then the visibly smaller group of alleged anti-Kiev activists started to attack the march, apparently provoking the demonstrators. Footage then shows a smaller group of men wearing red bands luring the pro-Kiev crowd into a different direction.

At some point, the police line opened up to let the men wearing red bands through and closed back up again. A video then shows a man standing behind the police lines shooting at the pro-Kiev crowd.

The provocations succeeded in triggering clashes, as both sides began to throw stones, and shots were heard.

The alleged anti-Kiev activists then disappeared and angry pro-Kiev supporters headed to the opposition camp based in front of the House of Trade Unions.

However, none of the original attackers with the red bands were there. Instead, a few dozen pro-autonomy activists were surrounding the camp. When the activists saw the angry mob approaching, they took shelter inside the House of Trade Unions.

Survivors of the fire say they had to barricade themselves inside the House of Trade Unions to hide from the agitated mob, which torched their tent camp.

Radicals then began throwing Molotov cocktails at the Trade Unions building, setting it on fire. Witnesses say those who managed to escape the blaze were severely beaten outside by the besiegers of the burning building.

But the Ukrainian Interior Ministry offers a different version of events, saying the victims of the violent unrest started the fire themselves when they began throwing Molotov cocktails from the upper floor.

Multiple videos of the incident, however, show Molotov cocktails flying from outside the building. Another video shows that some radical pro-Kiev elements were also inside the building, waving a Ukrainian flag.

The evidence leads one to conclude that the football fans could have been manipulated while unknown forces instigated the violence.


Which insignia has  this “pro-russian activist of united Ukraine” forgotten to take off? (at left – the band of ukrainian flag; at right – the George band (glory anti-fascist world war 2)

A further point from Da Russophile :

The conduct of the British media in response to this massacre has been beyond appalling. So far not a single British newspaper has editorialised about the massacre. Following the sniper attacks on Kiev the British media had no hesitation in putting the blame on Yanukovitch though the evidence (to put it mildly) was far from conclusive. At an earlier stage in the Maidan protests sections of the British media devoted a phenomenal amount of time, reporting and commentary to the attack on Chornovil with all sorts of unsubstantiated speculations that Yanukovitch was personally behind it though evidence of that there was none.

Not only has the British media failed to give the Odessa massacre anything remotely approaching the amount of reporting the scale of the massacre justifies but it persists in pretending that there are uncertainties about who was responsible even though film and eye witness evidence is conclusive and even though (as I understand it) persons involved in the pro Maidan organisations involved in the massacre have openly bragged about it. Instead the Guardian in its editorial the day after the massacre preferred to editorialise about the wickedness of Russia holding a May Day party on Red Square

We had an article in the Daily Telegraph calling the local people who demanded the release of the surviving anti government activists saved from the fire and arrested by the Odessa police following the massacre a “mob” threatening Odessa with “anarchy”

We have an article in the Guardian today calling readers who post comments on Comment is Free critical of its pro Maidan editorial line “Kremlin trolls”.

Whilst The Times editorialises that Putin must stop his campaign of “subversion and coercion” against the Ukraine which has in Odessa has “inspired separatists” into “acts of war”.

I invite people to imagine how the British media would have reported this massacre if roles had been reversed and if it had been Maidan supporters who were burnt alive in the Trade Union building with an anti Maidan crowd filmed throwing in Molotov calls and baying for blood outside.

May 5, 2014 Posted by | Deception, False Flag Terrorism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Timeless or most popular, Video | , , , | 2 Comments