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Israel newspaper incites against Corbyn, Muslims in UK

MEMO | September 3, 2018

Israel Hayom newspaper yesterday ran an article inciting against Muslims in the UK and leader of the British Labour Party, Jeremy Corbyn.

“The British capital of London has become a base for Islamic groups, especially the Muslim Brotherhood outside the Middle East and the centre for the campaign to delegitimise Israel,” columnist Eldad Beck said in an article published yesterday.

Beck added that this comes in the context of “the radical speech led by British leader Jeremy Corbyn, noting to the increase in non-governmental political movements with only one common goal that is calling for the elimination of Israel.”

“There are a number of Hamas men who are running the battle to delegitimise Israel in Britain and are working to spread it around the world in order to legitimise the elimination of Israel. They have been organising fleets for solidarity with Gaza since 2010, led by the Turkish Mavi Marmara flotilla which caused Israel unprecedented harmful propaganda,” he claimed.

“Some Hamas figures in Britain are leading the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement (BDS) and some have even filed legal complaints against British journalists who claimed that they have links with Hamas’ military activities, while others have issued anti-Semitic statements and got closer to Corbyn who received at the British Parliament Hamas representatives who had expressed their support for armed operations,” Beck added.

Meanwhile, former Director General of the Ministry of International Affairs and Strategy, Major General Yossi Kuperwasser, said “Britain is witnessing the emergence of what we can call the Green-Red Alliance, and one of its objectives is to wipe Israel off the map.”

“This alliance extends from Britain to the rest of the Western countries including the United States, but Britain is still the strongest body to export the Muslim Brotherhood’s ideology to the rest of the globe.”

“Palestinian activists in Britain are aiming to establish more Islamic organisations to influence the Kingdom’s internal and external policies,” he added.

September 3, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , | 1 Comment

Israel’s Presidents: From Ethnic Cleansing To Rape

And now, our God, what can we say after this? For we have forsaken the commandments that You gave through Your servants the prophets, saying: ‘The land you are entering to possess is a land polluted by the impurity of its peoples and the abominations with which they have filled it from end to end. Now, therefore, do not give your daughters in marriage to their sons or take their daughters for your sons. Never seek their peace or prosperity, so that you may be strong and may eat the good things of the land, leaving it as an inheritance to your sons forever.’ – Ezra 9:11

By Robert Inlakesh | 21st Century | September 3, 2018

The Presidents of Israel say a great deal about the nature of the self proclaimed ‘Jewish State’. An Israeli President is positioned upon a pedestal, as perhaps one of the most highly regarded figures, so is of much significance to the country’s image.

Often attempts are made to whitewash, the well documented, Israeli crimes perpetrated against the Palestinian people. Many Israeli committed atrocities have simply been glossed over as “mistakes”, whilst the line is then towed, that the State of Israel is aligned with the values of the Western World. Most mainstream media figure-heads will even attempt to paint Israel as a progressively oriented democratic state.

A state/country can often be judged by who it picks to represent it and who it chooses to project its image to the world.

The broadly accepted notion that there are “a few bad apples” that exist within the Israeli political institution, does not properly confront the recurring themes of bigotry, terrorism, sexism, fraud and xenophobia, that are found when investigating the conduct of the Presidents of Israel.

The following presents small samples of what Israeli Presidents felt comfortable sharing with the world.

 

Chaim Weizmann – First President of the State of Israel:

Israel’s first ever President was Chaim Weizmann, he remained President until his death on the 9th of November, 1952. He is, to this day, widely regarded as one of the founding fathers of the State of Israel, this is due to his early involvement in the Zionist Movement.

Chaim Weizmann sums up very succinctly, his Zionist perception of Arab people, in a letter written in 1918, stating that; “The Arab is primitive and believes what he is told” (as quoted in One Palestine Complete, P. 109). The former President also denied the existence of an Arab nation inside the state of Palestine, at the time (1918), describing Arabs as “Ignorant” and “Naive” during a discussion on Arabs in Palestine.

 

Yitzhak Ben Zvi – Second President of the State of Israel:

Yitzhak Ben-Zvi was Israel’s President from 1952 until 1963.

The following, extremely racist comment, was written in an article by the former President, published by the Ultra-Orthodox newspaper “Hassidic World”:

“the Arabs are a people similar to donkeys… they are a vile nation of savages… they have a great desire to murder and are even worse than the Nazi enemy.”

The above quote is but a sample of an article, reported upon by the Israeli News outlet Ynet News (on the 26th of August 2006). This blatantly racist article, was not the product of a neo-Nazi street thug, but rather a man who was Israel’s President for almost 9 years.

 

Zalman Shazar – Third President of the State of Israel:

Zalman Shazar served as Israel’s President for three days short of 10 years, between 1963 and 1973. In 1951, Zalman Shazar expressed himself, promoting an idea that has remained embedded in Israeli ideology to this day, White Jewish Supremacy.

On Page 35, of the book ‘Intra-Jewish Conflict in Israel: White Jews, Black Jews’, written by Sami Shalom Chetrit, Zalman Shazar is quoted as sharing the following statement, regarding the dangers posed by the ‘Mizrahi Aliyah’ (Non-White Jews):

“It will cost us dearly. This is Unfathomable… An Aliyah has to come to us who never knew the taste of a high school, and they are unused to so much education, to do so much learning… Suppose that, okay, we can bring them to graduate primary schools, but what will the level be then, what will the yishuv be like, would we able to be a light for the Gentiles?… Will the yishuv in Israel survive without more Europeans and Anglo-Saxons, Jews like us?”

 

Ephraim Katzir – The Fourth President of the State of Israel:

Serving from 1973 until 1978, Ephraim Katzir was the fourth President of the State of Israel.

Ephraim Katzir was infamously the man who founded the first known facility, used to produce Israeli biological weapons.

In 1993, the former President confirmed his involvement in the Israeli biological weapons program. Ephraim Katzir in an interview with Sara Leibovitz, for the Israeli newspaper ‘Hadashot’, pleaded guilty to indeed starting HEMED BEIT (Israel’s biological weapons facility). Ephraim Katzir says during the interview for Hadashot:

“I was involved in HEMED BEIT from the beginning. We planned various activities, to get a sense of what CBW is and how could we build a potential [in this area] should there be a need for such a potential.”

 

Yitzhak Navon – Fifth President of the State of Israel:

Between 1978 and 1983 Yitzhak Navon served as the Israeli President.

A point Yitzhak Navon made clear, was that the Israeli labor movements intentions were to cleanse the native Palestinians of their historic homeland. In Bernard Avishai’s, ‘The Tragedy of Zionism’ (P.340), written in 1985, he quotes the former President as saying:

“The very point of Labor’s Zionist program is to have as much land as possible and as few Arabs as possible!”

 

Chaim Herzog – The Sixth President of the State of Israel:

Chaim Herzog was the sixth President of Israel and held his position from 1983 until 1993.

Herzog was perhaps most famous for a speech he delivered, addressing the United Nations in 1974, condemning ‘General Assembly resolution 3373’, which equated Zionism to racism. During this speech he consistently refers to the terrorism committed by Arabs and uses the holocaust along with Jewish persecution – along with frequent references to religious rights to the land – to justify committing crimes against the Palestinians.

Constantly pointing the finger at Arabs for what he defined as “terrorism”, Chaim Herzog forgets to mention that he was himself a member of the Haganah. The Haganah were considered, by British Mandate Forces in Palestine, to be a terrorist organization before the group morphed into the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF), post 1948.

At the 73rd Address to the Canadian Parliament, Chaim Herzog, on the 27th of June in 1989, said the following:

“As Golda Meir once said, she cannot forgive the Arabs not so much because they kill our children but because they force our children to kill theirs.”

Various Israeli websites and journalists, have attempted to claim that the words of Golda Meir (Former Israeli Prime Minister) were fabricated. The above quote shows, that not only did Chaim Herzog believe these words had came from Golda Meir, but also, that he thought that this statement was perfectly viable himself.

 

Ezer Weizman – The Seventh President of the State of Israel:

Ezer Weizman was the President of Israel from 1993 until the year 2000. He resigned from his position as President, after it emerged in 1999, that he was involved in a bribery scandal.

Ezer Weizman was known as the founder of Israel’s air-force and was a former member of the Haganah.

Ezer Weizman was widely known as a misogynist and was accused of making homophobic comments on several occasions. The former president infamously said, in the event of a female being refused to take a pilot course (1993): “have you ever seen a man sewing a pair of socks?”.

 

Moshe Katzav – The Eighth President of the State of Israel:

Moshe Katzav was President of Israel from the year 2000 until 2007. He resigned as President, handing it over as part of a plea bargain, during an ongoing court case, after being accused of raping multiple women.

Moshe Katzav was sentenced to 7 years imprisonment for rape, he was granted parole after 5 years.

As well as being a convicted rapist, he also had no quarrel with spouting out his hatred of Palestinians. It was reported on the 11th of May, 2001, by the Jerusalem post, that Moshe Katzav said:

“There is a huge gap between us and our enemies – not just in ability but in morality, culture, sanctity of life, and conscience”. Katsav told this to a ‘Beit Hanassi’ reporter, using the killing of two Israelis by Palestinians, as an opportunity to publicly express Jewish supremacist views. Moshe Katsav later went rambled on to the reporter, that it was terrifying to realize how much hatred the Palestinians harbor against Israelis, “for no reason”.

 

Shimon Peres – The Ninth President of the State of Israel:

Shimon Peres became Israeli President in 2007 and lasted until 2014. Many still regard Shimon Peres as a peacemaker, the reality of his legacy is quite the opposite however.

Shimon Peres was the founder of Israel’s Nuclear program, he was also the first one to endorse Israeli settlement projects in the occupied territories.

Peres said, in an interview with al-Jazeera, on the 30th of December (2012):

“They [Palestinians] are self victimizing. They victimize themselves. They are a victim of their own mistakes, unnecessarily .”

Although he loved to preach to the media, of his hopes for a ‘two state solution’, Peres’ actions spoke louder than words. He would also – as quoted above – use any chance he could to advance the image of Israeli’s, morally and intellectually, attaching the notions of Arab stupidity and Palestinian inferiority. His rhetoric was not as vicious as those before or after him, but his actions however were perhaps worse.

 

Reuven Rivlin – The Tenth President of the State of Israel:

Reuven Rivlin is the current President of the State of Israel, taking the position in 2014.

The current President of Israel, who’s Prime Minister is Netanyahu, seeks to annex the West Bank and currently works to undermine any peace effort.

Along with his calls, to absorb the West Bank into the state of Israel, the President of Israel has made it clear, his stance on Palestinian refugees. The Israeli ‘Ynet News’, published an article in 2015, in which they quote Rivlin as stating the following:

“They call for the right of the return of refugees to Israel – something which is unacceptable for the consensus in Israel and which strikes at the very heart of this issue.”

Without going into his character in too much detail, the current President seeks the end of the Palestinian people. Reuven Rivlin aims to annex the West Bank, has overseen the US recognition of Israel’s Capital as Jerusalem, takes a firm stance against refugee return and currently refuses to act as the Gaza strip is in a declared state of emergency.

 

With such criminal and obnoxious consistency, is it perhaps correct to assume that Israel’s highly regarded and symbolic figures (its Presidents), somewhat reflected/reflect the country’s attitude and/or opinions?

September 3, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular | , , | Leave a comment

Is UK Labour Now Zionist-Occupied Territory?

Befuddled Party waits to be gagged by ‘enemy within’

Jeremy Corbyn – Rally in Trafalgar Square. Image credit: Davide Simonetti/ Flickr
By Stuart Littlewood | American Herald Tribune | September 3, 2018

The National Executive Committee of the Labour Party will vote tomorrow (Tuesday) on whether to bow to the bullies and adopt the IHRA definition of anti-Semitism even though it has been roundly criticised by legal experts as unworkable. If they do, it will be hailed as a mighty victory for the dark forces behind the pro-Israel lobby in their bid to shut down criticisim of that racist state.

More than two years ago Gilad Atzmon was viewing the Labour Party’s crazed witch hunt for “anti-Semites” with misgiving. He declared, in his usual robust way, that Labour under Jeremy Corbyn was not so much a party as a piece of Zionist-occupied territory.

Writing in his blog about Corbyn and McDonnell’s servile commitment to expel anyone whose remarks might be interpreted by the Zionist Tendency as hateful or simply upsetting to Jews, he concluded: “Corbyn’s Labour is now unequivocally a spineless club of Sabbos Goyim [which I take to mean non-Jewish dogsbodies]. The Labour party’s policies are now compatible with Jewish culture: intolerant to the core and concerned primarily with the imaginary suffering of one people only. These people are not the working class, they are probably the most privileged ethnic group in Britain…. I did not anticipate that Corbyn would become a Zionist lapdog. Corbyn was a great hope to many of us. I guess that the time has come to accept that The Left is a dead concept, it has nothing to offer.”

Amen to that last bit.

And more recently Miko Peled, former Israeli soldier and the son of a Israeli general, warned that Israel was going to “pull all the stops, they are going to smear, they are going to try anything they can to stop Corbyn” and the reason anti-Semitism is used is because they have no other argument.

Since then we’ve had a queue of high profile Labourites and others sticking the knife into Corbyn. Last week it was the former Chief Rabbi and Zionist extremist Lord Sacks. Then the much-respected MP Frank Field, a maverick who finally quit Labour in noisy fashion giving anti-Semitism as a reason but having grumbled for a long time about a culture of intolerance, nastiness and intimidation within the party. Yesterday we had to suffer ex-prime minister Gordon Brown mouthing off about how the IHRA definition “is something we should support unanimously, unequivocally and immediately.” He urged Corbyn to remove the “stain” of prejudice from Labour by writing the definition and all of its examples into the party’s new code of conduct.

That’s a particularly dumb thing to say considering the Home Office Select Committee urged two caveats be included and eminent legal minds Hugh Tomlinson QC and Sir Stephen Sedley pointed out how it is trumped by our right to free expression, which is part of UK domestic law by virtue of the Human Rights Act (something every Labour member ought to know and uphold), and by other conventions. Geoffrey Robertson QC also warns that it is “not fit for any purpose that seeks to use it as an adjudicative standard. It is imprecise, confusing and open to misinterpretation and even manipulation”.

Robertson adds: “The Governments ‘adoption’ of the definition has no legal effect and does not oblige public bodies to take notice of it. The definition should not be adopted, and certainly should not be applied, by public bodies unless they are clear about Article 10 of the EHCR (European Convention on Human Rights) which is binding upon them, namely that they cannot ban speech or writing about Israel unless there is a real likelihood it will lead to violence or disorder or race hatred.”

But Brown won’t be listening. He’s a dedicated pimp for Israel and a dyed-in-the-wool Zionist. In 2008, in the first speech by a British prime minister to the Israeli parliament, the Knesset, he told Israeli MPs: “Britain is your true friend. A friend in difficult times as well as in good times, a friend who will stand beside you whenever your peace, your stability and your existence are under threat.”

Unlike Corbyn, Gordon Brown wouldn’t talk to Hamas because warmongers in the White House had branded them ‘terrorists’. But that’s their opinion. The state of Israel was founded by terror groups like the one that murdered 91 in an attack on the British mandate government in the King David Hotel and carried out the Deir Yassin massacre. Israel is the expert in terror. As Norman Finkelstein has remarked, “It is more than a rogue state. It is a lunatic state… The whole world is yearning for peace, and Israel is constantly yearning for war.”

The Israeli government itself was described by one of Brown’s own (Jewish) MPs, Sir Gerald Kaufman, as a ‘gang of amoral thugs’.

Brown, the son of a Church of Scotland minister, would have done well (as would all the other critics of Jeremy Corbyn and his ‘funny’ friends) to mull over the words of Gaza’s Catholic priest, Father Manuel Musallam, who told a journalist friend Mohammed Omer: “Palestinian Christians are not a religious community set apart in some corner. We are part of the Palestinian people. Our relationship with Hamas is as people of one nation. Hamas doesn’t fight religious groups. Its fight is against the Israeli occupation.”

When asked about Western media reports that Islamic oppression was forcing Gaza’s Christians to consider emigrating, Father Manuel said that if Christians emigrate it’s because of the Israeli siege, not the Muslims. “We seek a life of freedom —a life different from the life of dogs we are currently forced to live.”

Turning the tables

Corbyn isn’t the problem. Zionists are. They are the enemy within. Corbyn’s election to party leader was a surprise brought about by a sudden influx of new supporters weary of sterile and corrupt politics. They had no time to groom him, not that he’s capable of being tamed like previous leaders. Corbyn has a long record of support for the Palestinians and other justice causes and that doesn’t sit well with the ‘emininence grise‘ pulling the strings. As a loose cannon in a carefully controlled political battlefield he had to be disabled. One way to do that was to pick off his allies one by one and, with the help of a compliant media, derail his party’s election prospects. That is what they’ve been doing with considerable success by weaponising so-called anti-Semitism against Labour’s naive and easily scared troops.

But why take allegations of anti-Semitism seriously from bully-boys who themselves practise or support racism? There’s a simple two-word response to such hypocrites. Admittedly there are within Labour’s ranks too many who say idiotic things about Jews to the detriment of the campaign for justice in the Holy Land. I’ve heard remarks that are so stupidly provocative that one suspects the people responsible are Zionist plants. What is the point of bringing up Hitler and the Holocaust when there are more Israeli war crimes and crimes against humanity than you can shake a stick at?

Corbyn should have acted swiftly on genuine complaints and rejected the trumped up ones. He didn’t. Outside interference should never have been tolerated. It has been and still is. The best way to deal with professional moaners like the Board of Deputies of British Jews is to politely give them the BDS treatment – ignore and refuse to engage until they change their intimidating tone. And tell them this is the British Labour Party not a flagpole of the Knesset.

Furthermore it is long past time to question Labour’s Friends of Israel about their shameless support for the criminal state and its racist leaders and the land-grabbing Zionist Project. There is no place in a socialist organisation, or in British public life at all, for people who cannot bring themselves to condemn a regime that behaves so viciously towards its neighbours, defies international law, thinks it’s exempt from the norms of decent behaviour and shows no remorse. What does aligning with apartheid Israel really say about them? And, by the way, who gave permission to use the party as a platform to promote the interests of a foreign military power?

If people holding public office put themselves in a position where they are influenced by a foreign power, they flagrantly breach the Principles of Public Life. There are far too many Labour and Conservative MPs and MEPs who fall into that category.

Strange how the upsurge in carefully orchestrated allegations of anti-Semitism coincided with the arrival of Mark Regev, former chief of Israel’s propaganda machine, spokesman for Israel’s extremist prime minister and a shameless liar, as Israel’s new ambassador in London.

Corbyn’s other option is to leave Labour, take his supporters with him and let the party stew in its own juice. Let’s face it, the party as it stood then and stands today is dysfunctional, a thing of the past and quite unsuited to the 21st century. There may still be time to build a new, clean, fit-for-purpose political party and get it established before the next general election. In it, though probably not leading it, Corbyn could at least be true to himself.

The Labour Party has repeatedly promised to review its rules to send a clear message of zero-tolerance on anti-Semitism, assuming it knows what that means and who the genuine Semites are. For balance, of course, it should match this with zero-tolerance of those who use the party as a platform for promoting the criminal Israeli regime and its obscene territorial ambitions.

And remember, in 1949 the UN took Israel to its bosom on condition that it accepted the Right of Return of the Palestinian refugees and complied with General Assembly Resolution 194. Noting the declaration by the new State of Israel that it “unreservedly accepts the obligations of the United Nations Charter and undertakes to honour them from the day when it becomes a Member”, the General Assembly admitted Israel as “a peace-loving State which accepts the obligations contained in the Charter and is able and willing to carry out those obligations”.

Has Israel ever honoured its membership obligations or acted as a peace-loving State?

September 3, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Full Spectrum Dominance | , , , , | 2 Comments

Reddit Identifies A New Threat: The Truth – #PropagandaWatch

corbettreport | September 3, 2018

Reddit is a controlled propaganda platform. Shocking, I know. Join James for this week’s edition of #PropagandaWatch where he breaks down self-proclaimed homepage of the internet’s war on truth.

SHOW NOTES: https://www.corbettreport.com/?p=27990

September 3, 2018 Posted by | Deception, Full Spectrum Dominance, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Video | , , | Leave a comment

Ambassador Kurt Volker: US to Drastically Expand Military Assistance to Ukraine

By Peter KORZUN | Strategic Culture Foundation | 03.09.2018

Washington is upping the ante in Ukraine. Kurt Volker, US Special Representative for Ukraine Negotiations, said in an interview with the Guardian published on September 1 that “Washington is ready to expand arms supplies to Ukraine in order to build up the country’s naval and air defense forces in the face of continuing Russian support for eastern separatists.” According to him, the Trump administration was “absolutely” prepared to go further in supplying lethal weaponry to Ukrainian forces than the anti-tank missiles it delivered in April. “They need lethal assistance,” he emphasized. Mr. Volker explained that “[t]hey need to rebuild a navy and they have very limited air capability as well. I think we’ll have to look at air defense.” The diplomat believes Ukraine needs unmanned aerial vehicles, counter-battery radar systems, and anti-sniper systems. The issue of lethal arms purchases has been discussed at the highest level.

The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019 allocated $250m in military assistance to Ukraine, including lethal arms. The US has delivered Javelin anti-tank missile systems to Kiev but this time the ambassador talked about an incomparably larger deal. Former President Barack Obama had been unconvinced that granting Ukraine lethal defensive weapons would be the right decision, in view of the widespread corruption there. This policy has changed under President Trump, who — among other things — approved deliveries of anti-tank missiles to Kiev last December.

Ukraine has officially requested US air-defense systems. According to Valeriy Chaly, Ukraine’s ambassador to the United States, the Ukrainian military wants to purchase at least three air-defense systems. The cost of the deal is expected to exceed $2 billion, or about $750 million apiece. The system in question was not specified, but it’s generally believed to be the Patriot.

Volker’s statement was made at a time of rising tensions in the Sea of Azov, which is legally shared by Ukraine and Russia. It is connected to the Black Sea through the Kerch Strait. The rhetoric has heated up and ships have been placed under arrest as this territorial dispute turns the area into a flashpoint. Russia has slammed the US for backing Ukraine’s violations of international law in the area. According to a 2003 treaty, the Sea of Azov is a jointly controlled territory that both countries are allowed to use freely.

The US military already runs a maritime operations center located within Ukraine’s Ochakov naval base. The facility is an operational-level warfare command-and-control organization that is designed to deliver flexible maritime support throughout the full range of military operations. Hundreds of US and Canadian military instructors are training Ukrainian personnel at the Yavorov firing range.

NATO has granted Ukraine the status of an aspirant country — a step that is openly provocative toward Russia. Macedonia, Georgia, and Bosnia-Herzegovina are also aspirant nations. Last year, Ukraine’s parliament adopted a resolution recognizing full membership in NATO as a foreign policy goal. In 2008, NATO agreed that Ukraine along with Georgia should become full-fledged members. In March, Ukraine, Moldova, and Georgia announced the formation of an alliance to oppose Russia.

The US is to render substantial military assistance to a country with an economy in the doldrums, reforms that have foundered, a democracy that is in question, and corruption that is widespread. It will be no surprise if those weapons fall into the wrong hands and are used against the US military somewhere outside of Europe. It was the US State Department itself that issued a report this year slamming Ukraine’s human-rights record. The UN human-rights commissioner tells the same storySo do human-rights monitors all over the world.

By supplying the weapons that Special Representative Volker talked about in his interview, the US will become an accomplice to a conflict that has nothing to do with its national security or interests. The situation in the Donbas is being used by Kiev to distract public attention from the country’s worsening domestic problems. But to Washington Ukraine’s government is the apple of its eye, a bastard but it’s our bastardthat is ready to do what it’s told.

The move is provocative and it may have consequences. For instance, Russia could supply the self-proclaimed republics in eastern Ukraine with up-to-date weapons systems in quantities sufficient to deter any military action on the part of Kiev. Once the Minsk accords are no longer functional and cannot command obedience, Moscow could recognize those republics as independent states that are eligible for military cooperation agreements, which would include stationing military bases on their soil. If their governments invited the Russian armed forces to be deployed inside their borders, it would be quite natural to agree to those requests. No international law would be breached. In a nutshell, if the US crosses that red line, Russia will act accordingly. Nobody seems to want a war raging in Ukraine, but that’s what the US weapons supplies would promote, egging the Ukrainian government on to seek a military solution. And what if it loses? Washington would be to blame for such a scenario. By the way, is it a coincidence that Mr. Volker’s interview appeared just as Alexander Zakharchenko, the leader of the Donetsk self-proclaimed republic, was assassinated? Just asking.

September 3, 2018 Posted by | Militarism, War Crimes | , , , | 1 Comment

Kester Ratcliff’s International Assadist Directory Is His “Contribution to the War Effort”

Kester Ratcliff cf56c

By Sara Abed | American Herald Tribune | August 31, 2018

After more than seven years of war, which have brought death and destruction, pain and suffering, and every form of terrorism imaginable to the Syrian people, the war is finally entering its final stage. The much-anticipated battle of Idlib will commence soon. The plan to liberate every inch of Syria, which has been stated numerous times by President Bashar Al Assad, is underway.

RT states, “Syrian forces are gearing up to take the last terrorist stronghold. The US is boosting its military presence, and Russia is warning of a false-flag chemical attack. RT looks at the alignment of forces ahead of the battle for Idlib. American warships, cruise missile delivery systems, strategic bombers and other hardware have arrived in the Mediterranean and in the Persian Gulf earlier this week. Washington is denying that any buildup is taking place, but Moscow says the assets are being gathered for a massive strike against the Syrian government.”

The Syrian people have been through unimaginable circumstances, brought on by a western manufactured insurrection, both on the ground and in the media. One would think, that bringing this war to an end, and allowing Syrians to rebuild their lives, would be an objective shared by all humanitarians and activists, but unfortunately, that is far from the case.

Propagandists who pose as humanitarians and activists, while ironically supporting terrorist aligned militant groups, have once again amplified their coordinated media efforts to spread misinformation ahead of the final big battle in Syria.

Timing is crucial

Journalist and book author Brandon Turbeville writes, “As mainstream media doubles down in its coordinated propaganda against the Syrian government and in support of direct Western military intervention, the alternative media has been going up against unprecedented censorship on the part of the social media and Internet corporate giants at the same time. For that reason, it is becoming harder and harder to find accurate sources of information regarding Syria as well as all other topics in a general Internet search. While readers of the alt media before Google’s purge and censorfest took place have largely remained, the amount of people being exposed to new information and an alternative to government and corporate propaganda has been drastically reduced.”

“Late last week, Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov said that the White Helmets group plans to film videos for Middle Eastern and English-language media outlets after staging a false-flag chemical weapons attack in Syria in order to further destabilize the war-torn country.” Sputnik News

In order to stay one step ahead of the game, Sputnik goes on to say, “Damascus has handed documents to the UN, to prove that al-Nusra Front* terrorists plan to conduct a chemical weapons attack in the northwestern Syrian province of Idlib and point the finger at the country’s government, according to Syria’s UN envoy Bashar Jaafari.”

International Assadist Directory

Kester Ratcliff a “Former Project Researcher at University of Bristol” who studies “Top Programme Evolutionary Biology MSc at RUG Groningen” and has previously studied “Animal Behaviour and Welfare Science at University of Bristol”, according to his Facebook page, has created what he calls a “references directory on 151 public figures who have expressed support and/or whitewashed the Assad regime, with examples and references.” He stated, “The purpose of this list is to facilitate finding the references to see and to show people who genuinely don’t know what is true and who to trust about Syria why the people on this list should not be trusted as sources.” Let’s take a moment to digest that last quite bold sentence. The people he cherry picked for his directory should not be trusted according to Ratcliff.

Who is Kester Ratcliff?

Ratcliff dedicated a substantial amount of time and effort to smearing Vanessa Beeley who has extensive experience working on-the-ground in Syria. In his directory he states “It is my honest opinion that she is manifestly an agent of the Assad regime, that she should be added to the lists of sanctioned persons under the UK and the EU sanctions on Syria, and that she should be arrested if she enters the UK or any EU Member State’s territorial jurisdiction and charged with direct and publicly broadcast incitement of the crime against humanity of widespread and systematic attacks on humanitarian workers in an armed conflict zone, under Article 7(1)(k) of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court. She responded to Ratcliff’s tweet, with the question on everyone’s mind  “Who are you?”

In 1978, a popular English rock band by the name of “The Who” released a song titled Who Are You? One of the lines is, “I remember throwing punches around and preaching from my chair”. What oddly perfect description of Ratcliff, who makes accusations against people he has never met, talked to, or even interacted with, all from the comfort of his chair.

Others on social media asked questions such as what expertise does Ratcliff bring to the table? How qualified is he to tell a broad audience who is trustworthy and who is not when it comes to the Syrian conflict? I am paraphrasing but the point is the same.

One might imagine, that this self-proclaimed “political thinker” (per his Medium bio) must have a background that qualifies him to give an opinion on journalists, political commentators, and other public figures who have contributed written or oral material during the course of over seven years of a western manufactured insurrection in Syria.

However, the questions certainly outnumber the answers in this case. What we can gather is that Ratcliff has never stepped foot in Syria, and relies on second-hand information, such as that from refugees whom he met and coached during his time in Greece.

The ever-evolving man of many interests

Ratcliff gives us more insight into who he is in the few articles he has written and published on various sites. In an essay published by Medium titled “Suffering and the Construction of Authority” Ratcliff wrote about his mother “I had a mentally ill and abusive mother, grew up as effectively her sole carer. During my teenage years, the most fundamental issue we fought about and the most frequently was that she demanded I should ‘respect her authority’ merely because of her conventional position as my parent, which I could not do because she was actually completely untrustworthy, unreliable and, literally, insane, and in fact I had to practically care for her like a parent would, when I was a child. Practically our roles were reversed, but she insisted on the ‘authority’ conventionally attached to her position. Needless to say, I absolutely refused.”

Ratcliff goes on to say, “That developmental experience made me extra sensitive, vigilant and radically opposed to all forms of authoritarianism in every area of human life. ‘Authoritarianism’ is the idea of ‘authority’ existing for its own sake, inherently possessing its authority, in an alienated way, rather than it being a characteristic of a relationship, in which authority is given and received (inter-subjectively) for certain mutually beneficial purposes.”

You can read more about his views on authority in his essay on Medium where his bio reads: EvoBio MSc student at RUG in Groningen, refugee solidarity volunteer, activist, political thinker.

Ratcliff shares with us the next chapter of his life in the same essay, “At 18, I ‘ran away’ to a Buddhist monastery, in North East Thailand, spent three and half years in Thailand, in monasteries of the Ajahn Chah lineage, and three years in branch monasteries in Australia. Thai Theravada Forest Tradition has its own problems with traditionalist authoritarianism and inter-cultural clashes. There are deep internal conflicts in the international monastic ‘community’ about Thai traditionalism, individualist autocratic authority of abbots, Thai collectivist authoritarianism, the forest tradition’s claims to radical scriptural orthopraxy, then exposed to European traditions of textual and historical criticism, and the trigger issue for an almost-schism in the midst of these underlying issues was the revival of full ordination for nuns. I very much sided with the radically scripturally orthopraxic side of that conflict, essentially because I could not trust a person then, so the scriptural advice “we take refuge in the Dhamma (the Buddha’s teaching), not in a person” (MN108/ MA 145) was important to me. I studied intensely too: communal monastic legal history (I also taught monastic law for a while), sociology of early Buddhism, and observed and introspected on authority.”

He wrote about his Buddhist monk experience for Buddha Channel in an article titled Kester Ratcliff —” Monastic lineages and the Vinaya: Which is Buddhist?” ”I used to be a monk for six and half years in the Thai Forest Tradition, my name then was Bhikkhu Santi. As well as a lot of meditation, in those six years I also did a lot of study and particularly Vinaya, and especially the two main neglected areas -the Bhikkhuni Vinaya and the communal legal procedures (adhikarana-samatha-dhammas).

Ratcliff shares an interestingly similar perspective about the abbots, as that of his mother in the same article.

Kester Ratcliffs Monastic passport 79cf6

*(Kester Ratcliff’s Monastic passport Source: Facebook page)

“However, I found the abbots I was expected to trust untrustable -firstly, because they demanded it too much -if somebody is truly trustworthy, they don’t need to say “you should respect me” or anything of that sort, they would be confident that they are trustworthy enough to just be themselves quietly; like getting a toddler to come in for a hug, you have kneel down, open your arms, and wait for the kid to run into your arms; grabbing or shouting don’t work.”

Ratcliff writes about his experience as a monk and how his journey led him to join the Quakers in an article on his website titled “Mulesika -Seeking the Roots”. “Personally my journey has led me to join the Quakers, last year, now that I’m a layman in a family-oriented life. I no longer call myself a Buddhist, and I can use conventional regional religious terminology like ‘God’ quite comfortably (with a massive footnote explaining that I don’t mean anything supernatural or having sabhava). I find I fit much better in the Quaker community, and one of the most obvious differences for me from my experience of the TFT is that the Quaker ‘institution’ treats people as full adults (maybe even a bit too much, because we mostly seem to attract people in their 40s onwards!), but I needed a change and it’s the furthest opposite extreme if you have religious allergy to hierarchicalism and enforced prolongation of adolescent-type dependence.”

Working with Refugees

-Ratcliff wrote an article titled Systemic legal issues for refugees in Europe and affected by Europe globally in which he states this is “A list of in-depth sources with connecting notes about the major systemic legal problems confronting refugees as they try to reach a place of safety. The major issues are in order of encounter from a refugee’s point of view.”

-On Ratcliff’s Facebook profile it states that he manages a group called Visas for Asylum or Safe Passage to EU.

-Ratcliff writes about his work with HIAS on his blog Silence of Eternity:

“HIAS is a refugee legal aid NGO from America, with operations in 14 countries and an implementing partner for the USA resettlement programme through UNHCR. It’s a Jewish organisation, founded in 1881 in the USA, originally was for Jews escaping persecution in Europe, but now serves any human person in the same sort of situation – http://www.hias.org/

Specifically what I plan to do in Chios next week and the week after:

  • Help physically set up the information tent – I’m not sure whether to take my power tools as well as my legal textbooks, but I have both here;

  • Try to set up a psychosocially safe, private and dignified environment in which to ask people to recall what happened to make them flee their homes and countries;

  • Discuss with them through the Guide I’ve prepared on how to prepare for asylum interviews, clarify their answers with them, and write down their statements ready for them to take in with them to their interviews (this should assist both the refugees and EASO/ the Greek Asylum Service, making the process both fairer and more efficient for everyone).

  • If there’s enough time, practice mock interviews with people.

  • Connect people whose cases I can’t deal with as a non-lawyer to the network of pro bono refugee legal aid lawyers I’m in contact with now, across NGOs.

  • Get a more detailed realistic sense of what’s needed and what works, to feed into the design of the HIAS Greece legal aid programme.”

-Ratcliff wrote a comment in response to an article written by the Sun titled “SYRIA CRIME WAVE: Hundreds of Syrians in UK arrested over string of offences including rape and child abuse, in which he stated “… I have reported it to IPSO as unfactual and discriminatory and to my local police force as a crime under S.23 of the Public Order Act 1986 for publication and distribution of material with intent or likely to stir up racial hatred, and written to my MP to ask her to write to the CPS asking them to seriously consider prosecuting you this time. I believe the journalists and their editors responsible for this publication, as well as the directors ultimately responsible for everything that happens in the whole company, should be convicted for incitement to racial or religious hatred, sentenced to the maximum term of 7 years imprisonment, and all of them should be banned from ever holding the directorship of any company ever again.”

The sole purpose of sharing this article and Ratcliff’s comment is to show that his calls for people to be convicted and imprisoned are nothing new.

In response to an article titled “Spiritual influence” and elections Ratcliff wrote “… the duty to vote and participate in social democracy is a serious public duty which also ought to be considered a religious obligation.”

Ratcliff is in his final-year as an undergrad student of Animal Behaviour & Welfare Science at Bristol University in the Veterinary Sciences School. His current dissertation project revolves around modelling how parasites influence the collective movement patterns that emerge in sheep flocks, using comparative evidence from research in fish.

This brief history based on public information that Ratcliff has generously offered via multiple media platforms might give us some insight about him, but leaves us with more questions than answers. Why has a relatively unknown individual in the Syrian conflict, taken on this task of quietly collecting information on 151 people, and placing a target on each and every one of their backs?

Ratcliff’s “contribution” to the Syrian war effort

Ratcliff states on a Facebook post that this is his “contribution to the war”. That’s an important point to take note of. Ratcliff is feeling the euphoric effects of overnight fame, but has also made it clear that he does not want people to focus on him as a person or his typos or his lack of credentials. No, it would be best to just blindly accept everything he has stated, without giving it much thought.

Ratcliff knew that this directory would cause a storm of backlash 5e810

Ratcliff knew that this directory would cause a storm of backlash based on some of his facebook posts.

Ratcliff had the help of a retired lawyer friend, and two journalists that helped check his “monster article”, in addition he checked it himself a “bazillion” times and remarkably still managed to misspell a number of names and get many facts wrong.

Ratcliff doesnt want this to be about him 8b41d

Ratcliff doesn’t want this to be about him, he says “It’s not really about me”.

Its not really about me 909aa

Filled to the Brim with Errors, Misspellings, and Inaccuracies

Ratcliff takes a lot of pride in his directory. On Facebook, he stated, “I have checked it very carefully, and endeavored to be fair. Despite hating them, I will not remove anyone or change what I have said about them, in spite of any amount of harassment, so don’t even bother trying, but if there is any real factual inaccuracy I will of course immediately correct it.”

Notice how much emotion he expresses towards those he has chosen to blacklist. He doesn’t merely disapprove of their viewpoints, but he hates them as individuals. Emotions can certainly cloud a person’s judgment, and by the looks of it, Ratcliff has no reservations sharing his feelings publicly about individuals whom he has never met or interacted with for the most part. The hate he mentions must have developed during the time that he was lurking in the background, watching and taking notes of who should make his list of untrustworthy sources, as he refers to them.

 Ratcliff wrote in a public Facebook post on his page about the typos.

Ratcliff wrote in a public Facebook 5cb8b

For someone who claims to have checked his directory “very carefully,”  it sure was filled to the brim with inaccuracies, and even people’s names were misspelled. Their very identity was wrong. If Ratcliff doesn’t care much for spelling people’s names correctly what else has he not given much thought to in his directory?

Medium email and article suspension

Medium has served as a platform for a number of Ratcliff’s essays and incoherent drivel.

Here are just two examples of Ratcliff’s literary balderdash:

Example of OSINT on 21stcenturywire Vanessa Beeley’s latest Assadist propaganda against the White Helmets – which Ratcliff states is “an incomplete draft from 22 June 2017. I’m publishing it now just in order to send it to another researcher.” He also states “One of Vanessa Beeley’s useful idiots challenged me to “prove it” — obviously they won’t read this or think about it or stop repeating lies, because they don’t believe in objective factual truth, but for the record, here is some proof”.

Definition and discussion of the meaning and importance of ‘Bullshit’. He states “I wrote this long definition and discussion of ‘bullshit’ to enable me to write a much shorter and simpler paragraph defining it in a major article later.”

His latest contribution has since been suspended by Medium. Their reasons for suspension can be seen in the following tweet.

The Assadist slur vs. Pro-Assad

According to Merriam Webster the definition of a sadist is one characterized by sadism: a person who takes pleasure in inflicting pain, punishment, or humiliation on others. Sadism is defined as the derivation of sexual gratification from the infliction of physical pain or humiliation on another person.

This clarifies why some choose to use the slur Assadist rather than simply saying Pro-Assad when insulting those who have committed one or more of the following “crimes”:

1. questioning the official narrative

2. doubting the truthfulness of mainstream media

3. speaking up against foreign intervention, imperialism, and terrorism

4. and lastly the most contentious of all according to characters such as Ratcliff… wait for it… actually supporting the elected president of Syria! President Bashar Al Assad ::horrifying gasp::

If these reasons truly qualify one to be called an Assadist then Ratcliff should have included the millions of people around the world who support the legitimate president of Syria Dr. Bashar Al Assad.

Of course using the term Assadist is not original or creative on Ratcliff’s part, nor is he the first to create such a ridiculous list, which could also have dangerous ramifications for those on it. Others have tread these murky waters before Ratcliff, just google Assadist and you’ll see a selection of unimpressive ramblings.

– Louis Proyect wrote about Assadists on his blog The Unrepentant Marxist. In one of his entries titled Young Assadist Academics Nursing their Wounds  he stated the following “One of the most depressing things about the six years of war in Syria, besides the obvious destruction of life and property, is the trail of intellectual damage left behind by investigative journalists, leftist leaders, and academics who bend the truth or outright lie in order to defend the mafia state. History will certainly remember people such as Seymour Hersh, Theodore Postol, and Tariq Ali as being ethically and intellectually challenged no matter how virtuous they were in the past.”

One can’t help but wonder if Ratcliff could be Proyect’s protégé? Either way, whether he is or not, doesn’t matter much, but it is interesting to see the similarities between the two, especially their love of using the same slurs and list-making passion.

What a useful tool their contributions must be to terrorist aligned opposition groups who are seeking to shut down dissenters especially during this last phase of a war… which they have clearly lost.

Media Responses to Ratcliff’s Directory

Ratcliff has been sharing articles written in response to his directory on his social media accounts with uber-enthusiasm. Overnight fame can be exhilarating and Ratcliff is enjoying every millisecond of his five minutes of fame.

Ratcliff’s greatest accomplishment thus far, could very well be getting the attention of RT which resulted in not one, but three articles being published in a span of two days, in response to his Assadist directory.

– August 27th: Chomsky, Hersh and… Boris Johnson? Twitter pundits ponder odd ‘Assadist’ blacklist “An obscure blog post, that accuses journalists and intellectuals of inciting “crimes against humanity” for their views on Syria, has received glowing reviews from verified Twitter pundits, despite its factually dubious claims. Featured on an unfrequented Medium blog, the “International Assadists References Directory” lists 151 people and organizations who have allegedly “expressed support and/or whitewashed the Assad regime.” The eclectic compilation of “Assadists” features individuals and groups of all political stripes and backgrounds, from the Greek nationalist political party Golden Dawn to Pink Floyd frontman Roger Waters. Notable journalists such as Seymour Hersh, John Pilger, Peter Hitchens, Glenn Greenwald and Patrick Cockburn are also listed as reckless Assad apologists.”

– August 28th: Don’t tell him, Pike! The laughable (yet sinister) list of ‘International Assadists’

Neil Clark wrote “A newly-compiled directory of 151 ‘International Assadists’ is both hilarious – for all the mistakes in it, but disturbing too, as it represents a McCarthyite attempt to police the debate on Syria.”

He goes on to say “By Ratcliff’s own admission you don’t even have to be ‘pro-Assad’ to be included in his ‘International Assadists Reference Directory’. His definition of ‘Assadist’ is incredibly wide – so wide in fact that it even includes those who have supported air strikes on Syrian government targets. Here he quotes Ratcliff as having written “All pro-Assad people are Assadists (they repeat Assadist propaganda claims), but not all Assadists are in their own view pro-Assad,” he explains in the introduction. In other words, if you repeat anything on Syria that he regards as an “Assadist propaganda claim”, you’re an Assadist. Even if you make it clear you strongly oppose the Syrian president – and support bombing Syrian airfields, like former UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, who is listed.”

– August 28th ‘Assadist list’ nothing more than McCarthyism paired with ‘hoodwink’ science George Galloway wrote “Yet I have made the Assadist List, compiled by a student scribbler, a Kester Ratcliff, whose name needn’t detain us for long. He is his masters’ voice and his masters are whom we should focus on.”

Responses from some of the “Assadists” in Ratcliff’s directory

Alt Media List of Sources

If poppycock isn’t your literary preference, and you have an appetite for truthful, honest reporting and journalism, might I suggest you read the following refreshing list of sources that have covered the war in Syria in many different capacities.

Brandon Turbeville is an exceptional journalist and accomplished author of seven books. Turbeville has first-hand experience from visiting Syria which only adds to the verity of his articles. Turbeville has published 1000’s of articles on a wide variety of subjects including health, economics, government corruption, and civil liberties. He has created an incredibly useful directory that should be read and shared by those who value the truth:  You Want A Real List? Directory Of Accurate Alt Media Sources On Syria. Turbeville wrote “… with disturbed “researchers” and various shadowy organizations creating silly lists of “Assadists” “Fake News,” and “Russian propaganda,” I thought it might be useful to create a list of my own, containing a number of the same names, in order to provide a list of researchers, journalists, and activists who have been working to expose the true agenda behind what is happening in Syria today in hopes that my readers will also find their work and find access to additional sources of information which certainly will not be available in the mainstream press. This, of course, is in addition to my own work.”

To conclude on a positive note, the reality on the ground shows that the foreign-backed militants have failed miserably in their pursuit of unseating President Assad and completely leveling the jasmine-scented country.

The will of the Syrian people has proven to be stronger than bombs and propaganda. In a last-ditch effort to shift the outcome of this war, misguided mouthpieces and paid propagandists alike will make a lot of noise, but that’s really all it is.

Their futile attempts at prolonging the war by demonizing people they disagree with is nothing more than a distraction. Ultimately their actions cannot and will not disturb the unrivaled unity of the majority of the Syrian people.

Sarah Abed is an independent journalist and political commentator. Her articles can be read at the Rabbit Hole.

September 3, 2018 Posted by | Deception, Full Spectrum Dominance, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Progressive Hypocrite, Timeless or most popular | , , | Leave a comment

Chile Begins ‘Coffee With A Cop’ At Starbucks To Build Trust

Guards, National Stadium, Santiago, Chile, 1973 photo by Marcelo Montecino
teleSUR | September 2, 2018

Chile’s national police force and Starbucks are partnering with the hope that people regain the trust of the state security agency found guilty of embezzling millions.

Chile’s national police are implementing their own ‘Coffee With a Cop’ campaign signing a contract with Starbucks to have three police officers in each of the country’s 120 stores for two hours once per month in order improve public trust in the government institution.

As part of the state security apparatus, carabineros, once helped torture, kill and prosecute its own citizens during the Augusto Pinochet military dictatorship (1973-1990), they had partly recuperated their image over the last couple of decades. By 2017, while still quite violent, carabineros were considered the least corrupt security force in Latin America. But in March of last year at least 70 of its rank and file were found guilty of illicit association and money laundering of up to US$38 million.

By February 2018 public distrust of the carabineros rose to 48 percent, 17 percent higher than the previous year, according to a Camden survey.

The state security force is hoping to overcome distrust and to gain people’s confidence by making themselves available to chat at local Starbucks throughout the country.

The national police communications coordinator, Major Diego Rojas, told local media “we saw that people did not see us up close. Citizens talk to the police when there is a crime when there is little space (to talk).”

The carabineros and Starbucks launched a pilot program last July stationing two police officers in three capital stores in Santiago for two hours each day. Rojas said the experiment went well.

Santiago’s mayor, Claudio Orrego, added: “there will be two or three police officers and a captain (at the coffee shops). They’ll be in uniform talking to people.”

The national security force decided to work with Starbucks because: “It’s a big chain that worked with the US police. In addition, it is in different communities, (and) it has a wide-ranging clientele.”

Juan Pablo Riveros, marketing manager for Starbucks Chile, said in a statement: “Our specific role in this program will be to provide the best place for these important meetings to occur. These will be made in all our stores in Chile, once a month, on a fixed schedule.” Riveros added, “We believe that these kinds of instances are very important for everyone, we are inviting the community to talk, and that for us is the most relevant.”

However, the Director of Advertising at the University Diego Portales, Cristian Leporati, told local media the initiative misses the mark.

“This is wrong. In general, people with a greater amount of prejudice against the Carabineros, … are not those who generally go to Starbucks.” Leporati added, “It is a huge marketing mistake to not segment the target audience well. I see it as a performance to make a by-product, like generating images of them talking to people.”

Last Thursday on the International Day of the Disappeared, carabineros prevented hundreds of families of the disappeared during the dictatorship from reaching the presidential palace in Santiago to place pictures of their loved ones.

The ‘Coffee With A Cop‘ campaign in the United States began in 2011 in Hawthorne, California with the same intention of building trust between cops and citizens who were more often saw the police as hurting rather than helping the city.

September 3, 2018 Posted by | Deception | , , , | 1 Comment

The Story of the Defected Restaurant Workers: Time to Stop Lying?

By Konstantin Asmolov – New Eastern Outlook – 03.09.2018

Among several high-profile stories which the author is closely monitoring is the so-called “case of the defected restaurant workers”. Readers may recall that on April 7, 2016, a manager and twelve waitresses of the North Korean restaurant Ryugyong in Ningbo (a city in China’s north-eastern province of Zhejiang) fled to South Korea for official reasons of “choosing freedom”. The story seemed strange enough from the outset. Suspicions soon arose that their escape was planned by the National Intelligence Service. Pyongyang has demanded the return of its citizens which even resulted in this issue being raised at high-level inter-Korean talks.

In May 2018, South Korean cable TV channel JTBC reported that restaurant manager Heo Gang-il scared the waitresses into joining him and fled to South Korea on the instructions of the National Intelligence Service. The manager admitted that he initially planned to escape alone, but following South Korean Intelligence Service threats, inclined other employees to escape with him. In exchange for such cooperation, he was promised South Korean citizenship and a restaurant in South-East Asia which he and other escapees would manage.

On May 30, at the UN office in Geneva, the representative of North Korea called on human rights bodies to investigate the circumstances of the escape. But the biggest blow to South Korea was delivered on July 10 at a press conference in Seoul given by UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in North Korea Tomás Ojea Quintana. The latter met with several former employees of the restaurant and announced that not all of them fled from China to South Korea of their own free will. Therefore, individual preferences regarding their future place of residence must be taken into account. Moreover, if the abduction is confirmed as such, it must be considered a crime.

The statement made by UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in North Korea caused great resonance. On July 11, the Ministry of Unification of South Korea immediately stated that the North Korean citizens fled to the South voluntarily. At the same time, the Ministry representative refused to disclose details for fear of jeopardizing the safety of refugee families in North Korea.

North Korea’s reaction was immediate. In a comment published on July 20 on the North Korean propaganda website Uriminzokkiri, it was stated that if the case of the restaurant employees is not resolved, it may not only create problems for conducting reunions between divided South and North Korean families, but will also jeopardize inter-Korean relations. The current situation, it reported, will be considered an indicator of South Korea’s sincerity in improving its relations with the North. A similar theme may be heard in materials published by the North Korean official newspaper Rodong Sinmun. However, Pyongyang finally decided not to interfere and go through with the reunion of families as scheduled.

Nevertheless, the Ministry of Unification confirmed that the employees of the North Korean restaurant in China were not under any pressure and their decision to flee to the South of the Korean Peninsula was voluntary. As was stated by its representative on July 30, the position of the South Korean government on the issue remains unchanged. The Ministry of Unification is currently cooperating with the National Human Rights Commission which had begun an audit on the matter.

However, things were again ruined by restaurant manager Heo Gang-il who on August 4, 2018 gave an interview to the New York Times. This time, his story was enriched with a greater number of details. It turns out that the driving force behind his escape was a Chinese-Korean customer who threatened to inform the North Korean authorities of Heo’s regular meetings with the South Korean Intelligence Service. When Heo asked South Korean Intelligence to transport him to South Korea, he was contacted by an agent on April 3 who instructed him to flee with all 19 waitresses within 48 hours. When Heo refused, the agent threatened to inform North Korean authorities of his attempted escape, but on the other hand promised to pay him millions of dollars if he went through with the plan.

Finally, Heo bought 20 plane tickets to Kuala Lumpur, and on April 5 told the waitresses that they are going to move to a different work location.  Shortly before the group left the restaurant to go to the airport, five waitresses noticed something was wrong and escaped. The Chinese restaurant owner also got involved: he chased after the group in his car and rammed a taxi transporting two of the waitresses. The others continued their escape without them.

When the waitresses finally found out that they were going to the South Korean Embassy in Malaysia, they broke down in tears. Nevertheless, Heo convinced them to continue their journey to South Korea, saying that things had gone too far as they were, and if they returned to North Korea, everyone would be executed. Just before boarding the plane to Kuala Lumpur, Heo called a South Korean Intelligence Officer and heard cries of enthusiasm and applause at the other end of the line. Heo was proclaimed a hero and promised that the escape would not be covered by the media, “so as not to endanger the families of those who fled”. But the very next day, the news regarding those who “chose freedom” were trumpeted everywhere. Neither did he get the promised millions of dollars. Heo is currently forced to work in minimarkets and as a delivery service truck driver.

Of course, the attention the story provoked is closely related to the political situation. The “restaurant worker scandal” is intended to cover up the previous “comment scandal”. As regards the “military conspiracy case”, “there were reasonable suspicions” that the  escape was organized by representatives of military, rather than “civilian” intelligence. Of course, the self-incrimination of the manager in his interview to U.S. media will be a hard fact to battle for South Korean authorities as they continue declaring that “everyone had fled voluntarily”.

Konstantin Asmolov, PhD in History, Leading Research Fellow at the Center for Korean Studies of the Institute of Far Eastern Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences.

September 3, 2018 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | | Leave a comment

US meddles in Russian affairs by trying to turn our citizens into informants – Kremlin

RT | September 3, 2018

In recent years, the US has been meddling in Russian affairs by “very crudely” trying to recruit Russians as informants, while exerting moral and other types of pressure on them, Vladimir Putin’s spokesperson said on Monday.

Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov was commenting on a recent story published in the New York Times, stating that in 2014-2016, the FBI and the US Department of Justice tried to recruit Russian business tycoon Oleg Deripaska as an informant.

According to the paper, US officials wanted to make the businessman share information on Russian organized crime and the alleged Russian aid to Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign.

Considering that businessmen like Deripaska are “major shareholders and top managers of major companies,” including those operating in “quite sensitive segments of the Russian economy,” attempts to recruit them constitute “attempts to meddle in Russia’s domestic affairs,” Peskov said.

The US Intelligence Community and lawmakers have been accusing Russia of interfering in the American election process by waging cyberattacks and ‘propaganda’ against US citizens.

In June, the US federal grand jury indicted 13 Russian nationals and three entities with organizing a campaign “supporting” then-candidate Trump and “disparaging” his then-rival Hillary Clinton. US officials also accuse the Kremlin of hacking the server of the Democratic National Committee and the email account of the head of the Clinton campaign, John Podesta.

The Kremlin had repeatedly denied claims that the Russian state provided any assistance to Trump and emphasized that the US failed to produce substantial evidence of ‘meddling.’ The House Intelligence Committee report, accusing Russia of interfering in the US election, was published but heavily redacted, with the chapter entitled ‘Russia attacks the United States’ completely covered with black lines. The same report found “no evidence” that the Trump campaign “colluded, coordinated, or conspired” with the Russian government.

As for the accusation of waging a ‘propaganda campaign’ on social media, IT giants YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter admitted that the ‘Russian-affiliated’ posts and videos made up just tiny fractions of their feeds.

President Vladimir Putin found the whole idea of Russia transforming the will of US voters ridiculous. “Does anyone seriously think that Russia can somehow influence the choice of the American people?” Putin said back in 2016.

“Is America some sort of a banana republic?” he asked rhetorically. “America is a great state. Correct me, please, if I’m wrong.”

September 3, 2018 Posted by | Russophobia | , , | Leave a comment

Mauritius’ takes UK to court over Chagos Islands

RT | September 3, 2018

The UK claim over an archipelago in the Indian Ocean is being challenged by Mauritius in the International Court of Justice. The largest island hosts a US airbase, the construction of which saw mass deportations of the islanders.

Despite the UK’s attempts to go through official channels in the UN to block Mauritius’ claim to the Chagos Islands, the case is set to be heard in The Hague.

Judges at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) will take four days hearing testimonies from the representatives of 22 countries arguing over colonialism and the rights of the deported Chagos Islanders to return. The ICJ’s judgement will be only advisory and have no legal binding.

Of the 22 states, only the representatives of the US, Israel and Australia are expected to support Britain’s claim to sovereignty to the Islands, which they name the British Indian Ocean Territory (BIOT) and are some 5,799 miles from London.

The US support in part stems from the strategic value of their airbase, commonly referred to as Camp Justice, which is situated on the largest of the Chagos Islands, Diego Garcia. The airbase has played a crucial role in US operations in the Middle East, including during the Iranian Revolution and both Iraq Wars.

Last year Britain suffered a heavy defeat at the UN General Assembly, when 94 nations supported a Mauritian-backed resolution to take the matter before the ICJ. Only 15 countries supported the UK’s claim.

The ICJ is set to consider both whether the decolonisation of Mauritius from the British was completed lawfully, and secondly the ability of Mauritius to resettle deported Chagossians back onto the islands.

The UK decided to separate the Chago Islands from the remainder of its Indian Ocean colony three years before Mauritius gained independence in 1968. Mauritius is claiming that Britain was in breach of a UN resolution that banned the breakup of colonies before independence.

Britain deported some 1,500 islanders in order to lease the largest island, Diego Garcia, to the US which set up an airbase there in 1971. Chagossians have never been allowed to return.

Mauritius has been promised the return of the Islands by London but only when they are no longer needed for defense purposes. No date has been set for when that is.

The hearing’s outcome is expected to be a signal of the UK’s power, or lack thereof, in the international sphere. Last November, London failed to secure the re-election of Sir Christopher Greenwood to the ICJ. Britain will now be without a judge in the court for the first time since its inception.

A Foreign Office spokeswoman, quoted in the Guardian, said: “We are disappointed that Mauritius have taken this bilateral dispute to the international court of justice.

“This is an inappropriate use of the ICJ advisory opinion mechanism and sets a dangerous precedent for other bilateral disputes. We will robustly defend our position.

“While we do not recognise the Republic of Mauritius’s claim to sovereignty of the archipelago, we have repeatedly undertaken to cede it to Mauritius when no longer required for defence purposes, and we maintain that commitment.”

September 3, 2018 Posted by | Illegal Occupation, Militarism | , , , | 1 Comment