Aletho News


Vitamin D Status and Viral Interactions… The Science

Ivor Cummins | April 27, 2020

Episode 73: Another one for Science and Data-Centric people everywhere

– a review of recent publications on Vitamin D versus Virus Infection severity of outcome

– fascinating early data emerging

– if it bears up in continued studies, this could have major implications for how we deal with this difficult situation

My 2014 Vitamin D talk here:…

Please support this free podcast by watching and sharing it to help others!

April 28, 2020 Posted by | Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular, Video | Leave a comment

Cuomo says one Covid-19 patient is like ‘fire through dry grass’, demands care homes take them anyway

RT | April 28, 2020

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has acknowledged that a single Covid-19 patient in a nursing home could rip through the facility like “fire through dry grass.” His order that facilities treat all infected patients remains, however.

Admitting that nursing homes are “congregate facilit[ies] of vulnerable people,” Cuomo admitted during a press conference on Tuesday that if just a single infected person – whether a doctor, nurse, janitor, or “one anything” – walked into one of the state’s hard-hit elder care facilities, “it is fire through dry grass in that nursing home.”

“It is frightening. And if you have a loved one in a nursing home, yes, it is frightening,” Cuomo shuddered.

Over 3,500 nursing home patients have died since the coronavirus epidemic took root in New York. The highly-infectious virus is known to be particularly devastating among the elderly and those with pre-existing conditions and has killed over 10,000 in elder-care facilities across the US.

However, Cuomo has refused to address or alter the executive order he issued late last month, forbidding care home operators from testing patients prior to their readmission to their facilities. No patient “determined medically stable” upon discharge from an acute care hospital may undergo testing for Covid-19 as a prerequisite for entry into a care home, never mind the judgment of staff.

The New York governor has defended his order despite protests from the facilities, even as staffers insist they don’t have adequate personal protective equipment (PPE) to deal with coronavirus patients and that the risk of infection threatens the fragile health of their existing charges.

“It’s not our job” to provide nursing homes with PPE, the governor said last week. He insisted that “we have given them thousands and thousands of PPE” and calling it the “primary responsibility” of nursing homes to outfit themselves with the equipment needed to fight the epidemic.

During his nine years as governor, Cuomo has slashed state healthcare budgets to the bone, and a recent controversial Medicare cut foisted hundreds of millions of dollars of costs from the state onto local governments.

A similar requirement that nursing homes take Covid-19 patients in California was walked back after protest. While Cuomo has insisted on the no-testing requirement as a way to ease pressure on supposedly overloaded local hospitals, other facilities meant to ease that pressure – from the hospital ship USNS Comfort docked on the west side of Manhattan to the temporary hospital set up in Manhattan’s Javits Convention Center – have gone largely unused, as the city’s hospitals have proven sufficient to absorb the surge in hospitalizations.

Burdened by the order to take in recovering coronavirus patients, some of the state’s nursing homes have unwittingly become breeding grounds for the virus. NBC profiled one facility in Long Island where the epidemic exploded from a single case to 24 deaths in just a month. Only three of the dead were transfer patients, and one wasn’t even a patient but a staffer, the outlet reported.

April 28, 2020 Posted by | Aletho News | , | Leave a comment

Almost 80% Americans Oppose Trading Privacy for COVID-19 Surveillance, Study Finds

Sputnik – April 28, 2020

According to a fresh survey, the vast majority of respondents are concerned about pandemic-induced surveillance measures continuing well after the outbreak ends.

Americans are increasingly worried about losing their privacy, as governments introduce monitoring measures to keep citizens safe from the further epidemic spread, research from suggested, putting the number of concerned citizens at 79 percent.

The said respondents noted that they were either somewhat worried or to a great extent worried that intrusive tracking mechanisms forced upon them by the government would extend well beyond the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to the research involving 1,255 adults, the vast majority of Americans – a staggering 89 percent –  “support or strongly support privacy rights.” When it comes to potentially sacrificing privacy rights for the sake of combating the spread of COVID-19, just over half (52%) go for “retaining personal privacy.”

Nearly two-third (65%) of those surveyed would not like the government to keep tabs on them via harvesting data or facial recognition measures, while less than a third (27%) would allow an app to use this kind of tracking.

The number is slightly bigger – up to 30% –  for those who would allow an app to share their location details with others  “if they were infected.”

“Even though the US has not yet introduced any new draconian surveillance measures to combat the spread of COVID-19,” the report concludes adding that “the results of this survey indicate that American adults are far from complacent when it comes to their privacy.”According to Johns Hopkins University estimates, the number of confirmed infection cases in the US has hit 1 million, with more than 57,500 corona-related deaths.

April 28, 2020 Posted by | Civil Liberties | , | Leave a comment

Your Freedoms Don’t Have to Be Muzzled Just Because You’re Wearing a Mask

By John W. Whitehead | The Rutherford Institute | April 28, 2020

Despite all appearances to the contrary, martial law has not been declared in America.

We still have rights.

Technically, at least.

The government may act as if its police state powers suppress individual liberties during this COVID-19 pandemic, but for all intents and purposes, the Constitution—especially the battered, besieged Bill of Rights—still stands in theory, if not in practice.

Indeed, while federal and state governments have adopted specific restrictive measures in an effort to lockdown the nation and decelerate the spread of the COVID-19 virus, the current public health situation has not resulted in the suspension of fundamental constitutional rights such as freedom of speech and the right of assembly.

Mind you, that’s not to say that the government has not tried its best to weaponize this crisis as it has weaponized so many other crises in order to expand its powers and silence its critics.

All over the country, government officials are using COVID-19 restrictions to muzzle protesters.

It doesn’t matter what the protest is about (church assemblies, the right to work, the timing for re-opening the country, discontent over police brutality, etc.): this is activity the First Amendment protects vociferously with only one qualification—that it be peaceful.

Yet even peaceful protesters mindful of the need to adhere to social distancing guidelines because of this COVID-19 are being muzzled, arrested and fined.

For example, a Maryland family was reportedly threatened with up to a year in jail and a $5000 fine if they dared to publicly protest the injustice of their son’s execution by a SWAT team.

If anyone had a legitimate reason to get out in the streets and protest, it’s the Lemp family, whose 21-year-old son Duncan was gunned down in his bedroom during an early morning, no-knock SWAT team raid on his family’s home.

Imagine it.

It was 4:30 a.m. on March 12, 2020, in the midst of a COVID-19 pandemic that has most of the country under a partial lockdown and sheltering at home, when this masked SWAT team—deployed to execute a “high risk” search warrant for unauthorized firearms—stormed the suburban house where 21-year-old Duncan, a software engineer and Second Amendment advocate, lived with his parents and 19-year-old brother.

The entire household, including Lemp and his girlfriend, was reportedly asleep when the SWAT team directed flash bang grenades and gunfire through Lemp’s bedroom window.

Lemp was killed and his girlfriend injured.

No one in the house that morning, including Lemp, had a criminal record.

No one in the house that morning, including Lemp, was considered an “imminent threat” to law enforcement or the public, at least not according to the search warrant.

Now what was so urgent that militarized police felt compelled to employ battlefield tactics in the pre-dawn hours of a day when most people are asleep in bed, not to mention stuck at home as part of a nationwide lockdown?

According to police, they were tipped off that Lemp was in possession of “firearms.”

So instead of approaching the house by the front door at a reasonable hour in order to investigate this complaint—which is what the Fourth Amendment requires—police instead strapped on their guns, loaded up their flash bang grenades and acted like battle-crazed warriors.

This is the blowback from all that military weaponry flowing to domestic police departments.

This is what happens when you use SWAT teams to carry out routine search warrants.

This is what happens when you adopt red flag gun laws, which Maryland did in 2018, painting anyone who might be in possession of a gun—legal or otherwise—as a threat that must be neutralized.

These red flag gun laws allow the police to remove guns from people merely suspected of being threats. While in theory it appears perfectly reasonable to want to “stop dangerous people before they act,” where the problem arises is when you put the power to determine who is a potential danger in the hands of government agencies, the courts and the police.

Now Lemp is dead and his family is devastated, outraged and desperate to make sense of what appears to be an insensible act of violence resulting in an inexcusable loss of life.

As usual in these kinds of shootings, government officials have not been forthcoming with details about the shooting: police have refused to meet with family members, the contents of the warrant supporting the raid have not been revealed, and bodycam footage of the raid has not been disclosed.

So in order to voice their objections to police violence and demand answers about the shooting, Lemp’s family and friends planned to conduct an outdoor public demonstration—adhering to social distancing guidelines—only to be threatened with arrest, a year in jail and a $5000 fine for violating Maryland’s stay at home orders.

Yet here’s the thing: we don’t have to be muzzled and remain silent about government corruption, violence and misconduct just because we’re wearing masks and social distancing.

That’s not the point of this whole COVID-19 exercise, or is it?

While there is a moral responsibility to not endanger other lives with our actions, that does not mean relinquishing all of our freedoms.

Be responsible in how you exercise your freedoms, but don’t allow yourselves to be muzzled or your individual freedoms to be undermined.

The decisions we make right now—about freedom, commerce, free will, how we care for the least of these in our communities, what it means to provide individuals and businesses with a safety net, how far we allow the government to go in “protecting” us against this virus, etc.—will haunt us for a long time to come.

As I make clear in my book Battlefield America: The War on the American People, there is always a balancing test between individual freedoms and the communal good.

What we must figure out is how to strike a balance that allows us to protect those who need protecting without leaving us chained and in bondage to the police state.

We must find ways to mitigate against this contagion needlessly claiming any more lives and crippling any more communities, but let’s not lose our heads: blindly following the path of least resistance—acquiescing without question to whatever the government dictates—can only lead to more misery, suffering and the erection of a totalitarian regime in which there is no balance.

Constitutional attorney and author John W. Whitehead is founder and president of The Rutherford Institute.

April 28, 2020 Posted by | Civil Liberties | , | Leave a comment

OPCW insiders dispute SECOND chemical weapons probe on Syria, blast ‘glaring technical weaknesses’

RT | April 28, 2020

A group of current and former OPCW employees have explosively slammed the organization for producing what they say is yet another “procedurally and scientifically flawed” report into alleged chemical weapons attacks in Syria.

Writing at the Grayzone, the insiders denounced the “compromised” investigation into chemical incidents in the town of Ltamenah in March 2017. The probe was conducted by the watchdog’s newly formed Investigation and Identification Team (IIT), which claimed there are “reasonable grounds to believe” the Syrian government was responsible.

The IIT concluded that sarin and chlorine bombs were dropped by Syrian forces on Ltamenah in a series of attacks in March 2017, saying it was “unable to identify any other plausible explanation.” The Russian Foreign Ministry noted that the alleged evidence gathered by the team came mostly from anti-government groups eager to see a regime change and could only be described as “misinformation.”

The IIT report on Ltamenah was instantly amplified by Western media as fact, despite claims by high-level OPCW whistleblowers that the organization’s leadership had suppressed evidence during a previous probe into an alleged chemical attack in Douma in 2018. The suppressed evidence, in that instance, had strongly suggested the incident may have been staged by jihadist rebel groups in order to frame the Syrian government and trigger a Western intervention. The OPCW, however, publicly offered a narrative which backed up Western claims of Syrian guilt, legitimizing US, British and French air strikes conducted in the immediate aftermath of the incident.

The fact that insiders are now also disputing the credibility of the Ltamenah report proves that “dissension within the OPCW ranks extends well beyond the Douma investigation,” the Grayzone said in its editor’s note.

The reports are so flawed and “politically motivated” that many OPCW professionals “no longer wish to be associated” with them, the group wrote, and many feel they should not be seen as representing the work of OPCW inspectors at all.

The Ltamenah report highlights the fact that “influential state parties” are misusing the OPCW to further their foreign policy objectives, and that the IIT was formed not to investigate the incidents but “simply to find the Syrian government guilty,” they said.

Indeed, the ITT merely “glossed over” some “glaring technical weaknesses” in reports from fact-finding missions to Ltamenah. Further damaging the report’s credibility is the fact that not one single member of the IIT conducted a field investigation, and “literally everything” in the case was provided by enemies of the Syrian government – some of whom are reportedly “well-known British military figureheads” who stood to gain by implicating the Syrian government, they said.

The OPCW insiders also took issue with the composition of the IIT, which surprisingly is made up of investigators “without any background or expertise in chemistry.” These so-called investigators are reliant on an “approved” list of “nameless, faceless” experts who represent Western intelligence agencies — a situation which suggests “devious and sinister” motives. This “one-sided array of experts” may be enough by itself to invalidate the conclusions of the IIT, they said.

While the IIT did lend some credence to the possibility of the attacks being staged, it quickly became clear that they did so only “with the express purpose of dismissing it,” they added.

In the article, the staff also briefly examined the question of motive, saying it “figures squarely within the realm of criminal investigation.” It is fair to question why the Syrian government would seemingly only use chemical weapons when they were “in control” of the conflict and not at their most desperate moments, they said.

Referring to a claim that chemical weapons, including sarin gas, were being stored at Shayrat Airbase in 2017, the group says the evidence ranks alongside intelligence reports leading up to the 2003 US invasion of Iraq in terms of its level of credibility.

The combination of the political bias, the compromised and flawed evidence, the lack of transparency and the singular reliance upon only one side of the story, leads to “serious doubts” about the IIT’s conclusions, the staff wrote.

What the IIT produced was simply the “desired Western opinion” about what “could have” happened. The “weak language” stating there are “reasonable grounds to believe” the Syrian government was responsible arguably implies a 50/50 scenario in which there are also reasonable grounds “not to believe” it, they said.

“At the end of the day, we must be clear that this is little more than an expression of a one-sided opinion,” they wrote.

Finally, the OPCW insiders took aim at the “complicit” mainstream media for interpreting the shaky conclusions of the investigation as hard fact, ensuring the flawed report “is met with no scientific challenge whatsoever.”

April 28, 2020 Posted by | Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | | 1 Comment

US return to JCPOA can end impasse over Iran

By M. K. BHADRAKUMAR | Indian Punchline | April 28, 2020

In business transactions and international diplomacy alike, there could be constant variables and dependent variables. Constant variable is where the value cannot be changed once it has been assigned a value. But it becomes a dependent variable if it is susceptible or open to the effect of an associated factor or phenomenon. Then, there is also a third independent variable, which is a factor or phenomenon whose value is given or set already that can cause or influence a dependent variable.

A big question for international security has arisen: What type of variable is at work as the US prepares a legal argument that it still remains a “participant” in the 2015 Iran nuclear accord known as JCPOA?

Both New York Times and Fox News, which reported on this development on Sunday maintained that the Trump administration’s ploy to reenter the JCPOA is riveted on a strategy to invoke the “snapback” clause, which would restore the comprehensive pre-2015 UN sanctions on Iran.

Much depends on the UN Security Council members. What if they come up with a dependent / independent variable that accedes to the US status as “participant”, provided Washington agrees to ‘X’, ‘Y’, ‘C’  factor or phenomenon? Trade-offs are more the rule than the exception in the UN SC; constant variable is a rare occurrence at the horseshoe table.

A Reuters report today, in fact, highlights that the Trump administration can expect “a tough, messy battle if it uses a threat to trigger a return of all United Nations sanctions on Iran as leverage to get the 15-member Security Council to extend and strengthen an arms embargo on Tehran.”     

The report quoted a European diplomat: “It’s very difficult to present yourself as a compliance watcher of a resolution you decided to pull out of. Either you’re in or either you’re out.” This is the crux of the matter.

Tehran has already notified the European Union that any move to re-impose UN sanctions through the back door will trigger a vehement reaction — including, possibly, Iran exiting the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.

The EU and the three European signatories of the JCPOA (UK, France and Germany) are extremely wary of the JCPOA being abandoned. Their sincerity of purpose is self-evident in the IMPEX mechanism (which enables limited trade between European companies and Iran despite US sanctions.)

The EU’s foreign policy chief Josep Borrell recently expressed regret about the US’ opposition to the IMF lending money to Iran against the backdrop of the coronavirus pandemic. The German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas publicly shared Borrell’s view.

Having said that, it is an entirely different ball game if the US were to walk back as “participant” in the JCPOA as original signatory. If that happens, everything else becomes negotiable — including fresh talks to renegotiate the terms of JCPOA. Tehran has laid down Washington’s return to the JCPOA as the sole precondition for talks.

Today, Radio Farda, the Persian service of the US government-funded Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty beamed to Iran, has carried a report US May Be Prepared To Rethink Stance On Sanctions, Nuclear Accord with Tehran which speculates precisely that on the “pretext” of extending the arms embargo against Iran, Washington could be principally “thinking of returning to the nuclear accord” and engaging with Iran in talks.

Radio Farda quoted a “usually well-informed Iran analyst in Scotland” to this effect. The report hinted that back channels are at work. Possibly, some kite-flying is going on here.

Indeed, Iranian media had reported recently that President Hassan Rouhani told a cabinet meeting in Tehran on March 25 that the “leader of a non-permanent member of the Security Council” had told him about the UN Security Council currently weighing plans for the removal of all sanctions against Iran.

Rouhani was quoted as saying at the cabinet meeting, “We are also trying to have our blocked money unfrozen.” (Rouhani was probably referring to a conversation with Kais Saied, President of Tunisia, which is a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council.)

Iran hasn’t reacted to the New York Times and Fox News reports. Meanwhile, in what could well be a related development, Rouhani had a phone conversation on April 21 with the Emir of Qatar Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani where the sanctions issue figured.

Interestingly, an Iranian Foreign Ministry statement later verbatim quoted from the conversation. Rouhani told Sheikh Tamim:

“The US pressure and sanctions against Iran are not only a violation of international law, but also they are violating human principles by intensifying their behaviour in these difficult circumstances, including preventing the International Monetary Fund from lending to Iran”.

“We believe that in this special situation, all countries in the world must stand together to fight coronavirus and clearly state their positions against the hostile actions of the United States”.

“Unfortunately, they are still reluctant to end their inhumane acts, but we have no doubt that sooner or later they will have to change course.”

The Emir responded,

“Today, the world is in a special situation and we believe that in this situation, the United States must lift its sanctions and all countries must move in line with the new conditions.”

Subsequently, there has also been a conversation between the two foreign ministers. Now, Qatar, which hosts the US Central Command Hqs, is a close ally of the US. Sheikh Tamim and Trump have a warm relationship.

During the emir’s visit to the White House last July, Trump remarked, “Tamim, you’ve been a friend of mine for a long time, before I did this presidential thing, and we feel very comfortable with each other.” No doubt, if ever Trump needed a back channel with the Iranian leadership, he wouldn’t need to look beyond Sheikh Tamim. (Significantly, Sheikh Tamim made a rare visit to Tehran in January this year.)  

Curiously, the day after Sheikh Tamim spoke to Rouhani, he also held a phone conversation with Trump. The White House readout said, “The president and the (emir) discussed the coronavirus response… The president encouraged the emir to take steps toward resolving the Gulf rift in order to work together to defeat the virus, minimise its economic impact and focus on critical regional issues.”

The bottom line is that the UN arms embargo is not really a big ticket item but the sanctions is. Even if the ban gets lifted in October, it is only for small arms, whereas transfer of advanced technology such as missiles will have to wait another 3 years. Iran is largely self-reliant in defence. And its asymmetric capability to generate deterrence against US aggression is legion.

The Trump administration realises that its sanctions policy has failed. The murder of the charismatic Iranian general Qassem Soleimani only hardened Tehran’s resolve to press ahead with the “axis of resistance”. And the world opinion militates against continued US sanctions against Iran.

In this backdrop, the forthcoming summit of the founding members of the UN may address the issue of sanctions. From such a perspective, the Trump administration’s seemingly belligerent move to return as “participant” in the JCPOA may turn out to be a dependent variable open to influence from one or more independent variables.

April 28, 2020 Posted by | Wars for Israel | , , , | Leave a comment

US to face tough battle in pushing plan to extend UN Iran arms embargo: Diplomats

Press TV – April 28, 2020

Diplomatic sources at the United Nations say Washington has a tough challenge ahead at the Security Council (UNSC) if it pushes for an extension of the world body’s arms embargo against Iran through recourse to a process set out in a multilateral nuclear deal that the US controversially abandoned in 2018.

The agreement — officially called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) — was signed in 2015 between Iran and six major world states and endorsed by UNSC Resolution 2231.

However, the US unilaterally withdrew from what President Donald Trump called “the worst deal ever” in May 2018 and re-imposed anti-Iran sanctions. It has also been coercing the remaining signatories to the JCPOA to follow suit.

Under UNSC Resolution 2231, the UN arms embargo on Iran — in place since 2006/2007 — will be lifted in October 2020. The US has repeatedly expressed its anger at the possible termination of restrictions on Iran’s import and export of arms.

On Tuesday, diplomats told Reuters that Washington is planning to use a threat to trigger a return of all UN sanctions against Iran as leverage to get the Security Council to prolong the arms embargo on Tehran.

A US official, who was speaking on condition of anonymity, said Washington has shared its strategy with Britain, France and Germany, who are permanent Security Council member states and parties to the Iran deal.

The diplomats said the scheme has not been shared with the remaining 11 council members, including veto-wielders Russia and China, the two other signatories to the JCPOA that are deemed certain to oppose the arms embargo on Iran.

Reports say if the Security Council refuses to revive the embargo, the US will try to trigger a so-called snapback of all UN sanctions on Iran by claiming that it is still a party to the JCPOA and that Iran is in significant violation of the nuclear pact.

The New York Times said on Sunday that US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was laying the groundwork to present a legal argument to the UN that Washington remains a “participant state” in the JCPOA.

It is “part of an intricate strategy to pressure the United Nations Security Council to extend an arms embargo on Tehran,” the report said.

Reuters, however, cited the UN diplomats as saying that Washington’s plan will likely be challenged since the US is no longer a party to the deal.

“It will be dead on arrival,” a Security Council diplomat predicted. “It’s very difficult to present yourself as a compliance watcher of a resolution you decided to pull out of,” a European diplomat said. “Either you’re in or either you’re out.”

Another European official said, “It’s going to be messy from a Security Council standpoint because, regardless of what (Britain, Germany and France) think, Russia and China are not going to sign up to that legal interpretation.”

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has dismissed Pompeo’s reported scheme, saying the plan to return to the JCPOA is rooted in the failure of Washington’s “maximum pressure” campaign against the Iranian nation.

‘US cannot cherry-pick UN resolutions’

Meanwhile, a Western diplomat, speaking on condition of anonymity, told AFP, “You cannot cherry-pick a resolution saying you implement only parts of it but you won’t do it for the rest.”

Similarly, Kelsey Davenport, director for non-proliferation policy at the US-based Arms Control Association, said “if Pompeo goes through with this plan, snapping back sanctions on Iran collapses the JCPOA.”

Even more significant, she added, the US measure could lead Iran to make good on threats to exit the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

“This is just another step that would undermine US credibility, make future negotiations with Iran more difficult and increase the risk of a nuclear crisis in the region,” she said.

‘US placing world in Catch-22 situation’

Russia also slammed the US plan, with Permanent Representative to International Organizations in Vienna Mikhail Ulyanov tweeting, “The country which officially ceased its participation in the #IranDeal cannot remain its participant by definition.”

The Russian Mission Vienna also said in a post on Twitter, “May 8, 2018 the #US says it “ends” and “terminates” its participation in the #JCPOA. Now there are claims that it still considers itself a participant. Is this a “Catch-22” sort of situation for Iran, UNSC and the whole world?”

April 28, 2020 Posted by | Wars for Israel | , , , | Leave a comment

Publisher withdraws history textbook following complaint from pro-Israel lobby group

King David Hotel bombing

In July 1946, Zionist terrorist group, Irgun, blew up the King David Hotel, the British administrative headquarters in Palestine, killing 91 people. Israel routinely celebrates the anniversary.
MEMO | April 28, 2020

Publisher Hodder Education has caved in to pressure from a pro-Israel lobby group and withdrawn a GCSE history textbook containing details of the conflict between Israel and Palestine. The book was intended for use with the Edexcel syllabus.

Lobby group UK Lawyers For Israel (UKLFI), which was recently sued at the High Court of Justice in London for spreading misinformation, complained about what it called “misleading and confusing content” in Conflict in the Middle East 1945-95.

According to UKLFI, there was “a plethora of inaccurate and confusing content” in the book, which “frequently refers to Jewish terrorists when their actions were against military targets.” The group also took issue with the land being referred to as Palestine during the post-Roman era. The description of early 20th century Jewish immigrants to Palestine as “settlers” was another bone of contention.


Palestinians can be seen fleeing their homes during the 1948 Nakba, also known as ‘The Great Catastrophe’

The period saw the Jewish population of Palestine increase from less than 5 per cent to around 32 per cent in the space of three decades. With indigenous Palestinian communities displaced as a result and hopes of Palestinian independence thwarted, the surge in European Jewish immigrants fuelled communal tensions.

Critics of Israel and its well-funded lobby groups are likely to view UKLFI’s complaints against the use of the term “Jewish terrorism” particularly jarring. The pro-Israel group itself has gained notoriety for labelling pro-Palestinian groups as terrorists.

In March the spread of misinformation caught up with UKLFI when it was sued successfully at the High Court of Justice in London for publishing blog posts on its website and sending letters to institutional donors alleging that a Palestinian children’s NGO had links to terrorist groups.

Moreover, it is well-known that Jewish extremists were indeed responsible for some of the most heinous terrorist attacks during that period when Zionist extremists became British spies’ main enemy. In November 1944, for example, the Stern Gang assassinated the British Minister for the Middle East, Lord Moyne.

Conflict in the Middle East 1945-95

Two years later, a Jewish terror group bombed the King David Hotel in Jerusalem, killing over 91 people and injuring many more.

The bombing is said to have been planned by the leader of the Irgun, Menachem Begin, who later became Prime Minister of Israel. Six members of the terror group entered the hotel disguised as Arabs, carrying milk churns packed with 500 pounds of explosives.

In another terrorist incident that shocked the world, Jewish militants assassinated UN mediator and Swedish aristocrat Count Folke Bernadotte. His “crime”, in the view of Jewish terrorists, was to suggest that Jerusalem be placed under Jordanian rule, since all the area around the city was designated by the UN Partition Plan for the proposed Arab state. In fact, the 1947 plan called for Jerusalem to be an international city that was to be ruled by neither Arab nor Jew. The Jewish extremists rejected this and were horrified by Bernadotte’s suggestion.

The leader of the gang that assassinated Bernadotte was Yitzhak Shamir, of the Stern Gang, or Lehi. In 1983, Shamir became the second known terrorist to become the Prime Minister of Israel.

See also:

UK Lawyers for Israel: Palestinian children’s rights NGO does not have links to terror groups

April 28, 2020 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Full Spectrum Dominance | , , , | 1 Comment

Israeli Forces Threaten Al-Aqsa Mosque Imam, Raid His House

Palestine Chronicle | April 28, 2020

Israeli intelligence services threatened the Preacher of the Al-Aqsa Mosque, Sheikh Ekrima Sabri, after raiding his house in occupied East Jerusalem.

The threat came after Sheikh Sabri said that he will reopen Al-Aqsa Mosque’s doors if occupation forces allowed Jewish settlers to storm the Muslim site.

“Israeli intelligence forces came to my house and threatened me saying that they will hold me responsible for any tension in Al-Aqsa Mosque, ” Sheikh Sabri told Anadolu Agency.

“I told them that suspending the reception of worshippers at Al-Aqsa Mosque does not mean in any way that it is permissible to the settlers to enter it,” he added.

“Israel should not be allowed to take advantage of the coronavirus pandemic and attempt to impose new restrictions on Al-Aqsa Mosque.”

In March, Israeli police summoned Sheikh Omar Kiswani, director of Al-Aqsa, for questioning at the Russian Compound interrogation center in West Jerusalem.

Tensions at the Al-Aqsa compound have been rising for some time, as increasing settler raids have been reported. Last month, the Islamic Endowments Department announced that it had suspended the reception of worshippers to prayers as a preventive measure amid the coronavirus outbreak.

On Sunday, Jewish settlers called on Israeli authorities to let them storm Al-Aqsa Mosque unilaterally.

April 28, 2020 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism | , , , , | 1 Comment

Western media continues to spread fake new about North Korea

By Lucas Leiroz | April 28, 2020

In modern warfare, one of the greatest weapons is the power to manipulate information. In a globalized international society, extremely integrated and connected by an infinite information circulation network, a media which controls the dissemination and content of such information is in an extremely advantageous position, as this power allows it to shape public opinion. In the mass society, we are all hostages to the dissemination of information and to the way it is carried out, which puts us in a position of extreme fragility, as we are daily forced to consume false information strategically manipulated by its disseminators.

Lies fill a large part of the mass media, as it is controlled by the most powerful groups in society and which are better able to guarantee their interests. In the Western world, the use of false information to denigrate the public image of people, countries, ideologies and movements that in some way oppose the liberal hegemonic ideology has become frequent. One of the biggest victims of this information war is North Korea, a country that is extremely denigrated in the West with numerous and repeated lies about its political regime and its society as a whole.

North Korean President Kim Jong-un was the youngest victim of the unfounded “death” news in Western media. In fact, it has become common for all North Korean public figures who are absent from the media spotlight for a few days to be reported as “dead” around the world – these death reports are often accompanied by weird accusations that such people were “sentenced to death”, even if there is no evidence for such conclusions. Once again, history repeated itself: after about two weeks without public appearances, Kim Jong-un was presumed dead by the West.

The trigger for world hysteria was Kim’s absence from the celebration of the last Day of the Sun – a traditional Korean holiday – on April 15th. Immediately, a media bombardment began in the West, with worldwide reports of the alleged “death” or “serious state of health” of the Korean President. The legend was generated around an alleged cardiac surgery, which would have been unsuccessful. According to the New York Post, the deputy director of HKSTV in Hong Kong said that Kim would be dead, citing a “very solid source” – which was not identified – while the Japanese newspaper, Shukan Gendai, said that Kim would be in “vegetative state” after undergoing cardiac surgery at the beginning of the month. On social media, the hashtag #kimjongundead quickly gained absurd popularity, being one of the most accessed on Twitter.

Apparently, the West wants to see Kim Jong-un dead, but the truth came out, with a series of official responses denying the avalanche of lies by the mass media. The South Korean intelligence service was the first to report the lie behind the information that Kim either died or was ill. “Our position in the government is firm”, special national security adviser, Moon Chung-in, said in an interview with CNN this Sunday (26), “Kim Jong-un is alive and well”. The adviser also said that Kim had been in Wonsan – a tourist town in the east of the country – since April 13 – which is why he was absent from public commitments – adding, “No suspicious movements were detected so far ”.

Then, a satellite photo captured an image of the President in Wonsan, showing that Kim is alive and well. The North Korean media then responded to the Western media offensive with several messages from Kim, confirming his health and thanking the messages of support received from public figures around the world who sympathized with the President’s alleged serious state of health. The most curious thing is that the lies invented by the West call attention for the degree of accuracy and complexity. Not satisfied with inventing death, vegetative condition and heart surgery, the media agencies released fake news stating that China had sent a team of doctors to operate Kim. Fortunately, Beijing denied the information immediately, leaving no doubt to its deleterious character.

In the end, Kim is alive, well and there is no concrete data that can tell us anything more accurate about his health. Obviously, the lie promoters already knew all this with antecedence, but they were concerned to make a lie in order to provoke inflamed reactions worldwide and destabilize Korea by tarnishing its image, portraying it as a dictatorial country, extremely closed and with a systemic censure – so strong that they are able to hide from the whole world a news as important as the death of their own president.

The darker side of this “fake news age” is that this false information drives big political decisions and is capable of influencing the actions of the people on large scale. Another example of the info-war power is Brazil, where fake news accusing China of having created the new coronavirus was officially admitted by the government, generating a serious diplomatic crisis between both countries and causing a wave of sinophobia and hostility against Asians in the country, with Chinese immigrants being beaten on the streets. On social media, millions of messages containing fake news about the virus are spread daily and already completely permeate the popular mentality.

An important tactic of information warfare is the handling of which news should be broadcast. Despite the huge repercussions of Kim Jong-un’s “death”, very few agencies have so far reported about the farce of this information, or, if they did, have invested little in its dissemination. The reason is simple: in addition to the interest in spreading fake news, denying previous information is costly and damages the image of these media outlets, which prefer to keep the lie.

Even though Pyongyang denies Kim’s death, Beijing denies having sent doctors for heart surgery and South Korea itself admits that it is all about fake news, in the popular imagination of Western mass societies, an image of Korea as a “terrible dictatorship” and “the most closed country in the world” is already formed and can hardly be rebuilt without a strong media work committed to the truth (which is far from emerging).

The fact is that Kim Jong-un is alive and, more than ever, it is proven that most of the content released about non-Western countries is made up of fake news. In our times, the circulation of information is a real battlefield, really worthy of attention for purposes of national defense and strategy.

Lucas Leiroz is a research fellow in international law at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro.

April 28, 2020 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | | 1 Comment

Netanyahu Is Back Yet Again

Israel will become much bigger

By Philip Giraldi • Unz Review • April 28, 2020

Rahm Emanuel, up until recently the mayor of Chicago and before that a top advisor to the president in the Bill Clinton and Barack Obama White Houses and still earlier a volunteer in the Israeli Army, famously once commented that a good crisis should never be allowed to go to waste. He meant, of course, that a crisis can be exploited to provide cover for other shenanigans involving politicians. It was an observation that was particularly true when one was working for a sexual predator like Bill, who once attacked a “terrorist” pharmaceutical factory in Sudan to divert attention away from the breaking Monica Lewinski scandal.

To be sure, the United States government is focusing its attention on the coronavirus while also using the cover afforded to heighten the pressure on “enemies” near and far. As the coronavirus continues to spread, the Trump White House and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo have increased the ferocity of their sabre rattling, apparently in part to deter Russia, China, Iran and Venezuela. Ironically, of course, none of the countries being intimidated are actually threatening the United States, but we Americans have long since learned that perceptions are more important than facts when it comes to the current occupant of the oval office and his two predecessors.

The latest bit of mendacity coming out of the White House was a presidential tweet targeting the usual punching bag, Iran. Based on an incident that occurred two weeks ago, Trump threatened “I have instructed the United States Navy to shoot down and destroy any and all Iranian gunboats if they harass our ships at sea.” The U.S. Navy ships in question are, one might also observe, in a body of water generally referred to as the Persian Gulf, where they are carrying out maneuvers right off of the Iranian coast. Meanwhile, Iranian flying gunboats have not yet been observed off of New Jersey, but they are probably waiting to be transported to the Eastern Seaboard by those huge trans-oceanic gliders that once upon a time were allegedly being constructed by Saddam Hussein.

Given the cover provided by the virus, it should surprise no one that Israel is also playing the same game. The Jewish state has been continuing its lethal bombings of Syria, with hardly any notice in the international media. In a recent missile attack, nine people were killed near the historic city of Palmyra. Three of the dead were Syrians while six others were presumed to be Lebanese Shi’ites supporting the Damascus government. Israel de facto regards any Shi’ite as an “Iranian” or an “Iranian proxy” and therefore a “terrorist” eligible to be killed on sight.

But the bigger coronavirus story has to do with Israel’s domestic politics. Benjamin Netanyahu and his principle opponent Benny Gantz have come to an agreement to form a national government, ostensibly to deal with the health crisis. The wily Netanyahu, who will continue to be prime minister in the deal, has thereby retained his power over the government while also putting a halt to bids from the judiciary to try and sentence him on corruption charges. As part of the deal with Gantz, Netanyahu will have veto power over the naming of the new government’s attorney general and state prosecutor, guaranteeing the appointment of individuals who will dismiss the charges.

And more will be coming, with the acquiescence of Washington. U.S. elections are little more than six months away and Donald Trump clearly believes that he needs the political support of Netanyahu to energize his rabid Christian Zionist supporters, as well as the cash coming from Jewish oligarchs Sheldon Adelson, Bernard Marcus and Paul Singer. So, it is time to establish a quid pro quo, which will be Israeli government behind the scenes approaches to powerful and wealthy American Jews on behalf of Trump while the White House will look the other way while Israel annexes most of the remaining Palestinian West Bank. Pompeo has welcomed the new Israeli government and has confirmed that the annexation of the Palestinian land will be “ultimately Israel’s decision to make,” which amounts to a green light for Netanyahu to go ahead.

A vote on West Bank annexation will reportedly be taken by the Knesset at the beginning of July followed immediately by steps to incorporate Jewish settlements into Israel proper. According to the Israeli liberal newspaper Haaretz, the planned annexation has raised some concerns among a few liberal American Jewish organizations because it will convince many progressives in the U.S. that Israel has truly become an apartheid state. J Street warned that annexation “would severely imperil Israel’s future as a democratic homeland for the Jewish people, along with the future of the U.S.-Israel relationship” and has even suggested cutting U.S. aid if that step is actually taken. Most other ostensibly liberal groups have adopted the usual Zionist two-step, i.e. condemning the move but not advocating any effective steps to prevent it. And it should also be noted that the largest and most powerful Jewish organizations like the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) and the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) have not raised any objections at all.

Unaffiliated individual liberal Jews, to include those who consider themselves Zionists, have generally been concerned about the move, though their argument is quite hypocritical, based on their belief that annexation would pari passu destroy any possible two-state solution, damaging both Palestinian rights and “Jewish democracy.” Some have even welcomed the change, noting that it would create a single state de facto which eventually would have to evolve into a modern democracy with equal rights for all. Such thinking is, however, nonsense. Israel under Netanyahu and whichever fascist retread that eventually succeeds him regards itself as a Jewish state and will do whatever it takes to maintain that, even including dispossessing remaining Arabs of their land and possessions, stripping them of their legal status, and forcing them to leave as refugees. That is something that might be referred to as ethnic cleansing, or even genocide.

And those Americans of conscience who are hoping for some change if someone named Joe Biden defeats Trump can also forget about that option. Biden has told the New York Times that “I believe a two-state solution remains the only way to ensure Israel’s long-term security while sustaining its Jewish and democratic identity. It is also the only way to ensure Palestinian dignity and their legitimate interest in national self-determination. And it is a necessary condition to take full advantage of the opening that exists for greater cooperation between Israel and its Arab neighbors. For all these reasons, encouraging a two-state solution remains in the critical interest of the United States.”

Unfortunately, someone should tell Joe that that particular train has already left the station due to the expansion of the Jewish state’s settlements. Nice words from the man who would be president aside, Biden is bound to the Israel Lobby for its political support and the money it provides as tightly as can be and he will fold before AIPAC and company like a cheap suit. He has famously declared that “You don’t have to be a Jew to be a Zionist – I am a Zionist” and “My Name is Joe Biden, and Everybody Knows I Love Israel.” His vice-presidential candidates’ debate with Sarah Palin in 2008 turned embarrassing when he and Palin both engaged in long soliloquys about how much they cherish Israel. Indeed they do. Every politician on the make loves Israel.

Philip M. Giraldi, Ph.D., is Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest, a 501(c)3 tax deductible educational foundation (Federal ID Number #52-1739023) that seeks a more interests-based U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East. Website is, address is P.O. Box 2157, Purcellville VA 20134 and its email is

April 28, 2020 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Militarism, Wars for Israel | , , , , , | 3 Comments