Aletho News


Why are we seeing such international apathy towards the Palestinians?

By Yvonne Ridley | MEMO | May 26, 2019

It is always refreshing to see the international community come together in emergencies when individual countries are blighted by man-made and natural disasters. Many European countries, for example, including Italy, Croatia, Greece and Cyprus, as well as Russia and Egypt, have responded with great urgency by sending firefighting aircraft and other equipment to help Israel battle ongoing wildfires in the central part of the country, which is in the grip of a major heatwave.

Why, though, do we not see a similar response to the humanitarian crisis unfolding before our eyes just a few short kilometres away in the Gaza Strip, where more than one million Palestinians face hunger and malnutrition thanks to a lack of basic foodstuffs and fresh water because of the cuts in funding and politicised restrictions imposed on traditional aid providers, including NGOs and charities? Their living conditions and general health and well-being are deteriorating daily under the brutal Israeli-led siege. Why are we seeing such international apathy towards the Palestinians?

Can anyone really explain why there was such an international response and concern for one of the wealthiest countries in the world and yet there remains a blatant lack of compassion coupled with a callous disregard for the plight of the people living in neighbouring occupied Palestine? When it comes to human rights, it seems, there is clearly a different approach based on geographic location and — dare I say it — ethnicity. Arab lives aren’t worth saving, right?

Lest we forget, most of the Palestinians in Gaza are refugees; they had their lands stolen from them at gunpoint during the Nakba (Catastrophe) of the creation of the state of Israel. Despite having a legitimate right to return to their homes and lands, they are still living a hand-to-mouth existence as the world’s longest-suffering and neglected refugees, forced to sit back and watch as billions of US tax dollars and other generous aid packages have poured in since 1948 to support and expand the Zionist project.

The Palestinians living in Gaza can look forward to a lifetime of uncertainty, hardship and hunger, whereas those born on the other side of the nominal border — Israel has never declared where its borders lie — will never know what it is like to go without food, water and medical care. Nor will they face the daily uncertainty of facing armed incursions, missiles and bombs, and even artillery shells targeting children playing football on the beach, without one of the world’s strongest armed forces to protect them.

The wildfires are thought to have started on Thursday during the Lag B’Omer holiday in Israel; it is a Jewish festival which is usually celebrated with bonfires. Restrictions were put in place this year due to the weather warnings, fuelling speculation that bonfires which were allowed to burn out of control were the source of the crisis.

Dozens of homes have been destroyed in multiple locations around central Israel after forests caught fire, causing major damage to small towns along the highway connecting Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Firefighters have battled fires along the boundary with Gaza, as well as near Ben Gurion International Airport and the Holy City.

Ignoring the Lag Ba’Omer bonfires, a government spokesman has blamed “incendiary balloons launched by Hamas” from the Gaza Strip. Once again, in the twisted world of Zionist propaganda, Israel has portrayed itself as the victim of Palestinian aggression, providing the right-wing government with an excuse, no doubt, for yet another military offensive in “self-defence” against the besieged and beleaguered people in the coastal enclave. To its eternal shame, the international community is more than willing to play along with that distorted narrative.

Don’t get me wrong. It is right and honourable that an international rescue team is fighting wildfires in Israel and responding to the crisis, but what I want to know is why the same spirit of a truly international community doesn’t apply with equal enthusiasm to the bigger, more devastating and, in human terms, much more costly crisis just a few miles down the road in Gaza? Don’t Palestinian lives matter anymore? Did they ever?

May 26, 2019 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism | , , , | 2 Comments

Nasrallah: If It Weren’t for Liberation in 2000, Trump Would Grant South to ‘Israel’

Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah
Sara Taha Moughnieh | Al-Manar | May 26, 2019

Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah delivered a speech Saturday 25th of May on the anniversary of Resistance and Liberation day.

Sayyed Nasrallah tackled regional and internal files including the upcoming Bahrain Summit, localizing the Palestinians in Lebanon, strength of the resistance axis, return of the Syrians to their country, and internal files.

His eminence called for a wide participation in Al-Quds day which is held annually on the last Friday of the Holy Month of Ramadan, stressing that this day is of great significance this year because of the efforts being made to put an end to the Palestinian cause, specifically during the upcoming Economic Conference in Bahrain.

He greeted the Palestinian’s united stance to boycott and refuse this conference and praised the Bahraini people, scholars, and political powers’ stances that condemned the country’s decision to be the first to embrace “the deal of the century” which aims at putting an end to the Palestinian cause.

25/May/2000: Resistance and Liberation Day

Sayyed Nasrallah greeted everyone who was part of this victory through sacrificing, staying patient, supporting and aiding.

“We should remember the families of the martyred and injured, Lebanese factions, Security Forces, Army, Palestinian factions and the Syrian Army and keep in mind that Iran and Syria are the ones who stood by our side and they are our companions in victory,” he said.

Hezbollah SG assured that one of the major outcomes of this victory was the “Equation of Strength” in Lebanon because the Israeli enemy had to pull back without any victories or conditions.

“Lebanon was no longer regarded as the weak ring in the Arab/Israel conflict, and today the Israeli enemy states that in Lebanon there is a “strategic or central threat against Israel”, he noted; adding “just like the enemy is aware of this strength, the Lebanese people should be aware of its importance in order to sustain their country’s sovereignty and safety and in order to protect it. This is what forms the Golden Equation “Army, people and Resistance”.”

“If it weren’t for the resistance and liberation in 2000, Trump would’ve granted the south of Lebanon or other parts of it to Israel, just like he did with Al-Quds and the Golan,” Sayyed Nasrallah said, reassuring holding on to “Shabaa Farms, Kfarchouba hills and the Lebanese part of Al-Ghajar village.”

Localization in Lebanon

Concerning localizing immigrants in Lebanon, his eminence said: “we suspect that the economic summit in Bahrain will be opening the door for the localization of immigrants in Lebanon and other countries. The Lebanese agree on refusing localization politically and constitutionally, and the Palestinians as well agree on refusing localization and holding on to their right of return.”

Sayyed Nasrallah called for “a meeting between Lebanese and Palestinian officials to put a joint plan on how to face the danger of localization because the threat is approaching and statements are no longer enough”.

Syrian Refugees’ Return

Hezbollah SG pointed out that “the real reason behind delaying the return of the Syrian refugees in Lebanon to their country is political and it is related to the presidential elections in Syria because the presidency of Bashar Al-Assad will end in 2020 or 2021, and there is an American, Western, and Gulf insistence on keeping the refugees away from their countries until then. There are no humanitarian or security reasons behind postponing the refugees’ return to Syria and claims about that are just rumors.”

Sayyed Nasrallah further stated that “Assad has confirmed to me that he supports the return of everyone to Syria and is ready to offer facilitation, but the obstacle is political. Should Lebanon submit to this political obstacle only because the US, west and Gulf want that?”

Battle against Corruption Files

His eminence stressed Hezbollah’s commitment to fight corruption, reiterating that this needs time and patience, and it is even harder than the battle of liberating the south.

He indicated that the ministers are doing their jobs and have not found corruption in the Ministries of health and sports, and called on everyone who has information or data against these two ministries to propose them so that action would be taken.

On another hand, Sayyed Nasrallah stated that “budgeting discussion has been our priority because it is a major point in the process of fighting corruption and stopping financial waste.”

May 26, 2019 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Illegal Occupation, War Crimes | , , , , | 1 Comment

Iran proposes ‘non-aggression pact’ to Gulf neighbors as regional tensions soar

RT | May 26, 2019

Iran has proposed signing a non-aggression pact to its neighbors, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said. At the same time, the country is ready to defend itself from any attack, be it “an economic war or a military one.”

“Tehran has offered to sign a non-aggression pact with its neighbors in the Gulf,” Zarif said on Sunday during a joint press conference in Baghdad with his Iraqi counterpart Mohamed al-Hakim.

Iran’s top diplomat did not name an exact list of the countries eyed in the document, yet stressed that Tehran seeks to “build balanced relations” with all Gulf states. At the same time, Zarif cautioned that the country is ready to defend itself if attacked, by any means necessary.

We will defend against any war efforts against Iran, whether it be an economic war or a military one, and we will face these efforts with strength.

Tensions have been high in the region over the past weeks, as the ongoing standoff between the US and Iran got even more heated. Washington has ramped up its warlike rhetoric against Tehran, accusing it – but providing no hard evidence – of plotting attacks on US citizens in neighboring countries.

Apart from that, several Saudi tankers were damaged under shady circumstances at a UAE port – and the blame was squarely put on Iran. Tehran maintained it was not involved in inflicting the minor damage on the vessels, blaming the incident on some sort of “Israeli mischief” instead.

Following the incident with the tankers and a drone attack on a Saudi pipeline, attributed to Yemen’s Houthi rebels, Riyadh accused Iran of seeking to destabilize the whole region and vowed to confront it with “all strength and determination” if attacked.

Tehran, on its part, has repeatedly stated that it’s not plotting to attack anyone, yet is more than capable of retaliating and even “defeating” the US and its allies in the Middle East.

May 26, 2019 Posted by | Economics, Militarism | , | 2 Comments

The US is Buying Venezuelan Oil Again (Zakharova)

Sputnik | May 23, 2019

From May 10 to 17, the United States imported 49,000 barrels of Venezuelan crude oil. This is the first time that the US imports its neighbor’s oil in weeks and the Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman, María Zakharova, has commented on the figure, published in the weekly report of the US Energy Information Administration.

Zakharova recalled that in March, the press reported that the special envoy of the United States Government for Venezuela, Elliott Abrams, had said that the United States was seeking “the complete isolation of President Nicolás Maduro on the international stage and, above all, the cessation of any commercial transaction of banks, companies and corporations with Venezuela that would be beneficial for Maduro”.

Zakharova countered Abrams’ words [with the fact] that the US has resumed Venezuelan oil imports at 49,000 barrels a day.

“And so always, first they encourage everyone to do something and then they change their maneuver 180 degrees, leaving behind those who gave in,” she said.

On January 28, Washington announced the imposition of sanctions against state oil company PDVSA and blocked the assets and interests of the Venezuelan company in its jurisdiction for 7,000 million dollars. The truth is that deliveries of Venezuelan oil in the United States for the first week of April reached 139,000 barrels per day, while during the previous three weeks it had been at zero, according to the US Department of Energy.

In annual terms, deliveries decreased 4.5 times from the level of 631,000 barrels per day, recorded during the first week of April 2018. From March 11 to March 29, according to statistics, oil was not supplied from Venezuela to the US.

Translated by JRE\EF

May 26, 2019 Posted by | Economics | , | 7 Comments

SDF Forces Arrest 200 Men in Syria for Resisting Forced Recruitment – Report

Sputnik – 26.05.2019

The US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces arrested approximately 200 male civilians, including children, during raids in Hasaka province of Syria between Friday and Sunday, according to Fars News report. According to the report, the detained civilians were forced to join the ranks of People’s Protection Units (YPG), the predominantly-Kurdish militia that comprises the core of multinational SDF.

The raids are said to be in line with the SDF policy of forced mobilization, despite protests among the local population.

The SDF also conducted raids in Raqqa province, arresting dozens of civilians.

On Thursday, SDF forces opened fire on residents of al-Hawl Refugee Camp located in southeastern Hasaka, some 15 km from the Iraqi border, according to Fars. The militants opened fire on a group of women and children who tried to escape the refugee camp due to its unbearable humanitarian conditions.

An undisclosed number of civilians died during the attack; several residents of the camp who attempted to flee were incarcerated, Fars reported citing activists in Hasaka.

The activists told reporters that the SDF imposed tight security measures around the camp, effectively taking it under siege. According to the activists, residents of the camp are in dire need of water, food and medical treatment, which can be obtained only outside the camp.

SDF treatment of civilians has sparked protests among the province’s population. On Wednesday, protesters burned down several SDF security centres across the city of Hasaka, al-Watan newspaper reported. According to the newspaper, the protests began after the SDF killed a young man who resisted forced recruitment.

The SDF reportedly dispatched reinforcements to the region, amid the rising unrest in Hasaka.

The Kurdish forces control a large part of Syria northeast of the Euphrates plus the territory around the city of Manbij. Damascus considers the US-backed SDF illegal.

Syria has been in a state of civil war since 2011, with forces backing the country’s leader, President Bashar al-Assad, fighting numerous opposition groups backed by Western states, as well as militants and terrorist organisations including Daesh — a terrorist quasi-state, outlawed in a number of countries.

May 26, 2019 Posted by | Aletho News | , , | Leave a comment

Global Elites Started The Russia Nonsense

Ted Eytan (Flickr/CC)
By Thomas Farnan | Human Events | May 24, 2019

Attorney General William Barr has turned the attention of the Russia probe to its origin: who started this and why? The answer, as in all the best crime dramas, is probably hiding in plain sight.

On July 13, 2016, British academic Dr. Andrew Foxall penned an op-ed in the New York Times, “Why Putin Loves Brexit.” He blamed Russia for the previous month’s Brexit vote, adding in a little noted aside:

The United States is so concerned over Moscow’s determination to exploit European disunity that in January, James R. Clapper Jr., the director of national intelligence, began a review of Russia’s clandestine funding of European parties.

The British aristocracy has a condescending view of the hoi polloi who voted for Brexit, regarding them as easily manipulated Pygmalion-like by smarter people.

Bingo! The Obama administration was spying on conservative European political parties. Which means, almost necessarily under the Five Eyes Agreement, foreign agents were returning the favor and spying on the Trump campaign.

On August 11, 2018, I wrote:

The British aristocracy has a condescending view of the hoi polloi who voted for Brexit, regarding them as easily manipulated Pygmalion-like by smarter people. They assumed Vladimir Putin was somehow playing Professor Henry Higgins to the flower girls who voted to reject the EU, because that’s how they see the world. Among the Cambridge class, this simple prejudice renders Russian collusion a first principle with no need for supporting evidence….

Without supporting evidence to prove their fantastical worldview, the global elite set out to manufacture some.

First up was Christopher Steele, who hasn’t set foot in Russia since 2009. He wears as a badge the claim that Putin hates him which, if true, means he has no real Russian sources. Maybe because of that, Steele’s farcical dossier on Trump was not enough for the FBI to open an investigation, and these international men of mystery needed something more.

They invited George Papadopoulos to London, used a Maltese asset disguised as a Russian agent – Joseph Mifsud – to feed him a whopper about Hillary Clinton’s emails, then claimed he repeated the lie to Andrew Downer, an Australian diplomat with ties to the Clinton Foundation.

That was the final straw that caused lovestruck counterintelligence specialist Peter Strzok to open an FBI investigation into the Trump campaign which he called “Crossfire Hurricane.” Apropos, because when MI6 was joined on its flank by an FBI investigation, it was officially a crossfire: two rogue intelligence services raining fire upon Trump.

Conspiracies are mere abstractions unless they do something criminal. The Russian interference fantasy needed a crime. The DNC sold a doozy of an actus reus to the FBI after John Podesta’s negligent disclosure of damaging Clinton campaign emails: Putin did it.

Conveniently, the FBI delegated the inspection of the computer servers to CrowdStrike, an insider paid by the DNC. James Comey testified to the Senate Intelligence Committee in January 2017 that CrowdStrike was “a highly respected private company.”

What he failed to mention was that a month before his testimony, CrowdStrike had been caught falsely blaming Russia for a hack into a Ukrainian artillery computer app.

In other words, at the same time this “highly respected private company” was blaming the Russians for stealing the Clinton campaign’s emails, it was fabricating a different Russian hack to serve Ukrainian misinformation.

Why all the fuss about Russia? Liberal elites – who tended to love the Soviet Union – hate present day Russia, which dares to assert nationality and culture against the pieties of the one-world-order crowd.

The Patriarch of the Orthodox Church passes on all legislation in the country. Putin put the girl rock band Pussy Riot in prison for desecrating an altar, a crime that has not been punished since the 13th century. President Obama sent gay representatives to the Sochi Olympics on his behalf, in protest.

That explains the leftists, but how about Republican elites? Mitch McConnell recently took to the floor of the U.S. Senate to declare the “case closed” on collusion, urging republicans and democrats to unite against Putin’s election interference.

That’s a problem. If Trump was a product of KGB-esque intrigue, then Hillary is a victim of meddling. Trump is merely an un-indicted hapless beneficiary. The deplorables are not only racist, stupid losers, they are also Putin’s unwitting stooges.

The same non-evidence cited to show collusion, though, undergirds the “but Russia interfered” stupidity. It is a three-legged stool that teetered for a while upon Christopher Steele, Joseph Mifsud, and CrowdStrike, and has now crashed to the ground.

President Eisenhower – the furthest thing from a conspiracy theorist America has ever produced – famously warned in his farewell address to beware “the military industrial complex.”

The great funding pipeline that makes Washington D.C. the wealthiest region in America feeds mostly on military spending which still, nearly thirty years removed from the Cold War, requires a Russian enemy.

Unconventional candidate Donald Trump rattled Washington to its core in March 2016 when he wondered about NATO’s continued relevance and questioned America’s foreign policy in Ukraine.

That’s when this “Putin’s candidate” stuff started among both Republicans and Democrats, egged on by Ukrainians – who almost certainly fed Steele the fake kompromat in the dossier.

Russia may be a convenient boogeyman that serves as a necessary foil to both sides in the Washington establishment. But, for once, let’s fight the real enemy: the global elites who started this nonsense.

May 26, 2019 Posted by | Deception, Russophobia | , , , , | Leave a comment

The DNC’s Dumb-Down Opinion Survey

By Renee Parsons | OffGuardian | May 26, 2019

In its recent Official 2020 Issues Survey, DNC Chair Tom Perez solicited input on the ‘top’ issue for the upcoming June debate as the Dems will use that “feedback to shape our electoral strategy.” In other words, the following identified issues will conceivably become questions at the debate and presumably will become the basis for the Dems 2020 platform which its Presidential candidate and down-ticket slate will campaign on. Those DNC issues are:

  • Jobs and income equality
  • climate change
  • Immigration
  • health care
  • Education
  • gun violence prevention
  • Civil rights
  • college affordability/student debt
  • Women’s reproductive rights

It is incredulous that foreign policy and war, among other vital issues, are completely absent from the DNC list thereby confirming how deeply out of touch the party is with political reality. To not recognize that the country is in an existential crisis; that there is no ‘normal’ and that a deep cultural and political realignment is underway, is to live in a cave.

If this is the best the DNC can come up with for 2020, it is easy to understand if the public tunes out their dumbed-down ‘debate’ and why the Democratic party has turned the corner on political relevance.

There was a time when voters looked forward to a debate as a good thrashing out differences of opinion and entertaining controversy with opposing arguments put forth. Instead the Dems are now little more than mealy mouth purveyors of harmless, benign issue forums, loyalty oaths, preserving incumbent status quo and assuring that preferred candidates look good with flawed polls and especially nothing too controversial, nothing too provocative.

It may be that as the 23 (or is it 24) Dem Presidential candidates take the stage in late June, that a handful will stand out as authentic human beings with superior analytical and communication skills, who have well-thought out ‘signature’ issues of essential importance that are clearly in the best interests of the American public; Andrew Yang and Rep. Tulsi Gabbard come immediately to mind.

There will be others who would be satisfied with a future Ambassadorship and may flounder in generalities, repetitive and purposeless, or those with flashy, verbally facile empty gestures, all riding the gravy train to nowhere.

Some of the following represent a 2020 reality check on issues of public interest or concern that the Dem establishment is either uninformed about or would prefer to avoid since a red hot discussion might actually stimulate some authentic political dialogue which, in turn, might encourage more public involvement and a higher voter turnout. It is in any establishment’s best interest to maintain control of any debate, to control the questions and deflect any real difference of opinion that might challenge the status quo.

In addition, a ‘real’ debate would allow the public to cull out the weak links and focus on those candidates who have something vital to add to the dialogue. This list is not meant to be all-inclusive:

  • Domestic: Emergency preparedness, $22 trillion debt, Opioid crisis, middle class struggle, Pentagon/Fed Bank audits, decay of American cities: homeless/drugs/alcohol/mental health crisis, Patriot Act repeal, immigration, climate changes/solar minimum/global cooling,
  • Accounting of Costs: unconstitutional military action in Iran or Venezuela or North Korea or places yet to be determined, ongoing wars in Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan and Yemen.
  • Collapse of Russiagate and impact of DOJ Spygate investigation on 2020 election
  • Big Tech – monopoly, no taxes/regulation, 5G, censorship/First Amendment, AI – job loss/trans human beings, Tesla’s free energy, electric grid update
  • Foreign Policy: Globalism, BRICS/‘open world economy,’ sanctions/false flags, NATO, ET visits, fighting Israel’s wars, Trade:
    1. Russia: NATO threat, election interference, re-establishing relationship, Sanctions/Magnitsky Act
    2. China: Foreign trade, the Silk Road, emerging multipolar world, fentanyl crisis, So China Sea
    3. Israel: US $ support; ownership of Congress, role in 911, register AIPAC, initiated 5G Greater Mideast Plan
    4. Iran: False flag, sanctions, Greater Mideast plan target
    5. Venezuela: Maduro coup, sanctions, oil resources

Many of these items deserve more attention and better quality discussion than they normally receive while others may receive what seems like inordinate interest and yet remain unresolved – immigration which has been on the national agenda since at least 2008 is one such issue. It is interesting to consider that the current Democrat position morphed after the 2016 election in opposition to Trump’s policy to close the border and build a wall.

Previously, both President Bill Clinton and Barack Obama proposed an immigration policy that is very much reflected in elements of Trump’s proposal (absent the wall). One can surmise that the Dems belatedly realized the voter registration edge that open borders would provide and as a tool to build opposition to Trump. So much for unifying the country.

Admittedly, the foregoing issues are a heavy lift for any aspirant to the Oval Office but any candidate who wants to be president of 330 million people had better be a world class multi-tasker, wildly better informed and analytical than the rest of us. If any of those aspirants are not able to deal with hard core reality, are unable to flow with unexpected exigencies and speak truth to power, then stop wasting our time and step down.

In any case, the upcoming June debates (June 26/27) promise to be either a colossal flat tire dud event or the opening of a semi riotous free-for-all which will be considerably more entertaining. One political true-ism for any candidate at this early stage is Newton’s law of physics – what goes up, must come down.

Renee Parsons has been a member of the ACLU’s Florida State Board of Directors and president of the ACLU Treasure Coast Chapter. She has been an elected public official in Colorado, an environmental lobbyist for Friends of the Earth and staff member of the US House of Representatives in Washington DC. She can be found on Twitter @reneedove31

May 26, 2019 Posted by | Deception, Economics | , | Leave a comment

US City of Baltimore Under Attack by NSA Cyber Weapon – Report

Sputnik – 26.05.2019

The cyber weapon was developed by the US tech spying agency to break into foreign computers, but now the US itself is under attack by the malware, and tech experts say it’s the handiwork of the NSA.

Guess which list unites North Korea, Iran, China, Russia, Israel and the United States? These are all the nations that have not signed the Paris Call for Trust and Security in Cyberspace — Emmanuel’s Macron’s effort to stop cyber-attacks in peacetime.

The US’s National Security Agency (NSA), often portrayed in the media as the most technologically advanced intelligence agency in the world, and routinely resorts to hacking and cyber-attacks in order to steal the information they need. To do so, tech geniuses on government payrolls write “tools” — malware programs designed specifically to strike at vulnerabilities found in operational systems, including the US-made Windows OS family.

And then these programs get leaked.

In 2017, an unidentified group of hackers named Shadow Brokers published EternalBlue — NSA-made very powerful program capable of taking control of computers run on the Windows operational system. Anonymous NSA operators, cited by The New York Times, say it took the agency a year to find a flaw in Microsoft security to build the malware upon. Needless to say, once the flaw was discovered, NSA did not go out of its way to inform the software giant about it. In fact, it was only after the malware was published online that they contacted Microsoft and told them about the vulnerability.

Now the NSA-written malware is rampaging Baltimore, Maryland. The exact geography of the affected computers is undisclosed as Microsoft is trying to keep the lid on the outbreak, but it is likely that other cities were affected as well, the Times report says.

The malware is capable of paralyzing hospitals, airports, rail and shipping operators, ATMs and factories. Local US governments that use aged software and hardware are particularly vulnerable to EternalBlue attacks, according to the Times.

On 7 May, Baltimore city workers were hit with a classic ransomware attack. The malicious software locked the workers out of their computers and displayed a message written in remarkably poor English.

“We’re watching you for days and we’ve worked on your systems to gain full access to your company and bypass all of your protections,” the note on the screen warned against calling the FBI and demanded $100,000 in Bitcoin as ransom.

“We won’t talk more, all we know is MONEY!” the note said. “Hurry up! Tik Tak, Tik Tak, Tik Tak!”

According to The Baltimore Sun report, poor spelling does not necessarily indicate a foreign attacker: domestic hackers use it to deceive both victims and investigators.

Earlier in February, Allentown, Pennsylvania was also hit with an EternalBlue-based attack. It cost the city $1 million to remedy and $400,000 for new defences, according to the Times. In September, the malware hit San Antonio, Texas, locking the local sheriff’s office.

The Times reported that EternalBlue has become the favourite tool of the trade for government hackers. The 2016 WannaCry attack, attributed to North Korea and 2017 NotPetya attack, blamed on Russia, is said to be all based on EternalBlue. Iran has been accused of hacking airline networks in the Middle East, and China is said to have targeted Middle Eastern governments using the same tool.

The NSA tries to deflect flak for the Shadow Brokers leak and release of EternalBlue in the world, making an analogy with a Toyota truck — initially designed for peaceful use but converted by Middle Eastern militants into a weapon of war. Microsoft officials reject that analogy, saying EternalBlue was designed as a weapon from the start.

“These exploits are developed and kept secret by governments for the express purpose of using them as weapons or espionage tools. They’re inherently dangerous,” says Tom Burt, Microsoft’s Vice President of Customer Security and Trust. “When someone takes that, they’re not ‘strapping a bomb’ to it. It’s already a bomb.”

May 26, 2019 Posted by | Deception, Militarism | , | Leave a comment