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Labour letter demands RT UK’s license gets REVOKED in light of ‘damning’ Russia report that gave NO examples or proof

RT | July 23, 2020

An evidence-free parliamentary report accusing RT UK of being an instrument of ‘Russian influence’ in Britain is already being quoted as a pretext to ban the broadcaster, in a letter sent to Ofcom by a Labour shadow minister.

Labour MP Jo Stevens demanded that “Ofcom urgently reviews RT’s licence” and requested an urgent meeting with Dame Melanie Dawes of the regulatory agency to “discuss my concerns about the broadcaster,” in a letter sent Wednesday.

Stevens – signed as the Shadow secretary of state for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport – said the review was needed given the “troubling revelations in the Russia report about the role of RT and Sputnik in spreading Kremlin-backed disinformation in the UK.”

The shadow secretary further claimed that the parliamentary report, released on Tuesday, “sets out in black and white” the issues OFCOM has supposedly already identified with RT, and “exposes the role RT plays in the much wider issue of Russian influence.”

Unfortunately for Stevens, the report does no such thing. When asked to provide an “egregious” example of the alleged Russian interference, committee members were unable to give “any, egregious or otherwise,” as noted by the BBC’s Andrew Neill.

The committee did not even cite any of the British intelligence agencies – indeed, it excoriated them for allegedly refusing to investigate the ‘Russian meddling’ the parliamentarians asserted as fact – but relied instead on “open-sourced reporting.”

In practice that translated to articles published in the media and testimonies from experts such as Christopher Steele of the debunked “Trump-Russia dossier” infamy, or ex-American financier Bill Browder, who’s reinvented himself as a human rights crusader after being charged in Russia with tax evasion.

Democrats in the US infamously blamed Russia for their loss to Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential election, using Steele’s spurious dossier as evidence. Labour currently holds only 202 seats in the 650-member House of Commons as a result of their historic collapse in 2019.

OFCOM is a supposedly independent regulatory agency tasked with ensuring impartial reporting by media outlets operating in the UK, and this kind of pressure from a political party is highly unusual and improper.

July 23, 2020 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance, Russophobia | | 1 Comment

Stomping South Vietnam

Tales of the American Empire | February 27, 2020

General William Westmoreland’s strategy during the Vietnam war was to kill enemy soldiers faster than they could be replaced. American Generals attempted to win with massive aerial bombings, starving the rural population, and shooting anyone who seemed hostile. Large areas of South Vietnam were designated as “free fire zones” where everyone was presumed the enemy. American soldiers often laughed at this immorality and stated: “kill them all and let God sort them out.” As a result, roughly two million Vietnamese civilians were killed and several times more wounded by American weaponry. General William DePuy defined this strategy as: “more bombs, more shells, more napalm… We are going to stomp them to death.”

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Related Tale: “US Army Genocide in the Philippines”; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YuUvm…

Related Tale: “The Illusion of South Vietnam” explains why Vietnamese viewed the Americans as colonial occupiers: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0B9BM…

By the time US military ground troops arrived in Vietnam, “They all hated us!” as this Marine Corps veteran explains: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tixOy…

CBS News report from Vietnam; Aug 5, 1965; Morley Safer; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W0AmO…

“Law at War Vietnam 1964-1973”; US Army Vietnam Studies; https://history.army.mil/html/books/0… “Charlie Company and the Massacre”; PBS: a timeline of the My Lai Killings: https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/americanexpe…

“Peers Inquiry; Report of the Department of the Army Review of the Preliminary Investigations into the My Lai Incident”; Library of Congress; https://www.loc.gov/rr/frd/Military_L…

Nick Turse Describes the Real Vietnam War: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A7x6u… Related Tale: “American Aerial Massacres in Germany”: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XVee6…>

July 23, 2020 Posted by | Illegal Occupation, Timeless or most popular, Video, War Crimes | , | 1 Comment

Ohio’s $60 million bribery scandal could ensnare the American nuclear sector, because public trust is undermined

By Ken Silverstein | RT | July 23, 2020

Ohio’s $60 million corruption, bribery case – that has ensnared the House speaker and four others – has also embroiled the nuclear power industry, which is at the heart of the criminal charges filed this week.

The nuclear energy sector in the United States has been trying to keep its head above water — unable to compete with cheap shale gas and subsidized wind and solar power. So it has sought help from state governments, which have taken up legislation to reward nuclear for being a carbon-free source of energy. In the case of Ohio, it is home to FirstEnergy, which owns two nuclear power plants in the state and which asked lawmakers for such consideration.

Ohio’s lawmakers, like those from Connecticut, Illinois, New York and New Jersey, voted to save their nuclear power plants not just because they are reliable and clean [???] but also because they employ thousands of people. In Ohio, it was a $1.3 billion bailout package. What the citizens of Ohio learned this week, however, is that $60 million in surreptitious payments were allegedly made to make that happen and part of that money went into the pockets of House Speaker Larry Householder.

FirstEnergy Solutions, now known as Energy Harbor, is the nuclear unit within FirstEnergy Corp.

According to the Energy and Policy Institute, this is the company which owned the nuclear assets that Householder helped to bailout “and which FirstEnergy spun off in bankruptcy restructuring.”

Energy Harbor says that it will cooperate fully with the investigators, although it is not named in the criminal complaint. However, it is likely the entity that prosecutors refer to as ‘Company A’ — the one that made the $60 million in payments to Speaker Householder’s ‘Generation Now’ fund so that it could get the $1.3 billion in benefits. Prosecutors say that the money was paid over a three-year time frame beginning in 2017.

“This is likely the largest bribery, money laundering scheme ever perpetrated against the people of the state of Ohio,” US Attorney David DeVillers told a press conference. “This was bribery, plain and simple. This was a quid pro quo. This was pay to play.”

In the actual complaint, the prosecution alleges the payments were tantamount to “bags of cash” that went unregulated and unreported.

This is more than a public corruption scandal. It is a potential take-down of nuclear energy. If it is, the ramifications would be huge: According to the Nuclear Energy Institute, there are 96 nuclear reactors in 29 states. Altogether, they supply about 20 percent of the country’s electricity and about 55 percent of its carbon-free power. They operate at 92 percent capacity, more than any other type of power plant.

A heavy weight

Context is key. In the US, electricity grid operators are the ones to order up and dispatch the lowest-cost electricity sources — a system that invariably favors shale gas because it is so cheap relative to competing fuels. Existing generators that sell their electricity at market rates, can’t win. This fact, along with the high capital costs it takes to construct nuclear plants, has severely curtailed nuclear development in the US.

As a result, six nuclear plants have closed down since 2013 and several more have announced retirement dates over the next decade. The practical implications of moving away from nuclear and into natural gas have been greater CO2 emissions. When Southern California Edison closed its plant in 2013, such heat-trapping releases rose by 35 percent. To avoid further closures, state legislatures are subsidizing nuclear power by recognizing their carbon-free contributions.

But the American nuclear power sector has never learned the most basic lesson of Three Mile Island Nuclear Generating Station, which suffered a partial meltdown of its core in 1979 and which triggered an irrevocable backlash: get accurate information to the public in a timely manner. Secrecy does not work. In 2013, Southern California Edison said it would shutter its San Onofre Generating Station because of a small radiation leak. While the utility had maintained publicly that it only learned of the seepage in 2012 during routine maintenance, it was subsequently proven that it long knew that irregular vibrations could lead to leaks.

The utility then lost all credibility with regulators and the public.

Bad economics in combination with poor PR have been mounting for a long time. And the problems are bound to get worse now that FirstEnergy’s Energy Harbor is allegedly embroiled in this latest mess. And the industry can’t blame the environmental movement for this latest crisis — a movement concerned about storing radioactive nuclear waste and potential accidents.

“FirstEnergy’s successful campaign last year to secure a $1 billion bailout of its Ohio nuclear plants is at the center of a pay-to-play scandal that is rocking Ohio,”says Sandy Buchanan and Seth Feaste, of the Institute for Energy Economics & Financial Analysis. “The FBI would do well to take a closer look at all other state government-official involvement with FirstEnergy during the years when FirstEnergy was seeking a ‘legislative solution’ to save its nuclear plants.”

Where does the nuclear sector go from here? No doubt, the industry will separate itself from the corruption scandal now plaguing the state of Ohio. It will continue to maintain that global climate goals cannot be met without heavy participation from nuclear. But it will once again have to fight off the stench of secrecy and back-room politics — the same factors that have weighed it down since 1979. When the Ohio case is resolved, so too might be nuclear’s future in the US.

July 23, 2020 Posted by | Corruption, Nuclear Power, Science and Pseudo-Science | | 1 Comment

War Crimes and War Criminals: Who Will Be Held Accountable?

By Philip Giraldi | Strategic Culture Foundation | July 23, 2020

There is something unique about how the United States manipulates the “terrorism” label to avoid being accused of carrying out war crimes. When an indigenous militia or an armed insurgency like the Taliban in a country like Iraq or Afghanistan attacks American soldiers subsequent to a U.S. invasion which overthrew the country’s government, it is considered by Washington to be an act of “terrorism.” Terror attacks de facto permit a carte blanche response, allowing virtually anything as retaliation against the parties involved or countries that support them, including the assassination of foreign government officials. But for the attacker, whose perspective is quite different, the incident often could reasonably be described as legitimate resistance to a foreign occupier and much of the world might agree with that assessment.

So, it all comes down to definitions. The United States covers its version of reality through liberal use of the Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF) which more-or-less gives a blanket approval to attack and kill “terrorists” anywhere at any time. And how does one become a terrorist? By being included on the U.S. government’s heavily politicized annual list of terrorist groups and material supporters of terrorism. That was the argument that was used by the United States when it killed Iranian General Qassem Soleimani in January, that his organization, the Qods Force, was on the “terrorist” lists maintained by State and the Treasury Department and he was therefore held to be guilty of any and all attacks on U.S. military carried out by Qods or by presumed Iranian surrogate militias.

The case made to justify killing Soleimani was considered deeply flawed at the time it took place. Because the United States says something is legal due to a law Congress has passed does not make it so, just as most of the world would consider the U.S. profile killings by drone in Afghanistan and elsewhere, based on nothing more than the assumption that someone on the ground might be a “terrorist,” to be little more than war crimes.

It has recently been revealed that the Trump Administration has issued a so-called “finding” to authorize the CIA to conduct more aggressive cyberattacks against infrastructure and other targets in countries that are considered to be unfriendly. The finding specifically named Iran, North Korea, China and Russia as approved targets and it is of particular interest because it basically left it up to the Agency to decide whom to attack and to what degree. As Washington is not at war with any of the countries named and is essentially seeking to damage their economies directly, the activity undertaken by CIA has constituted acts of war and, by widely accepted legal definition, attacks on countries that are not actually threatening are war crimes.

To counter the negative publicity about Trump Administration actions and to establish a possible casus belli, Washington has been floating numerous stories alleging Iranian, Russian and Chinese “aggression.” The ridiculous story about Russia paying Afghans bounties to kill American soldiers was quickly debunked, so the White House and the captive media are now alleging that Moscow hacker/spies are seeking to steal proprietary information dealing with the development of a coronavirus vaccine. The agitprop coming out of Washington to blame Russia for nearly everything notwithstanding, opinion polls suggest that most of the world considers Washington to be the primary source of global instability, rejecting the assertion by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo that the U.S. is a “force for good.”

So, it is reasonable to suggest that the United States has been guilty of many war crimes in the past twenty years and has only been shielded from the consequences due to its ability to control the message combined with its power in international fora and its unwillingness to cooperate with the International Criminal Court (ICC) in the Hague.

But the willingness of the international community to look the other way in support of the war crimes double standard appears to be changing. The ICC, which has had its investigators denied entry to the United States, has been investigating Israeli war crimes even as it also looks at developments in Afghanistan and Iraq involving U.S. forces. Trump’s ban on entry by ICC personnel includes their families even if they are American citizens and it also protects Israel in that ICC investigators looking into the possible war crimes committed by Israeli soldiers and officers as well as the relevant Jewish state’s government officials will also be sanctioned and denied entry into the U.S. In practical terms, the Trump Administration is declaring that Israeli and U.S. soldiers will be regarded as one and the same as they relate to dealings with the ICC, a conceit that is little known to the American public.

The Israelis have responded to the threat from the ICC by compiling a secret list of government officials and military officers who might be subject to ICC issued arrest warrants if they travel in Europe for war crimes committed in Lebanon and Syria as well as of crimes against humanity directed against Palestinians. The list reportedly includes between 200 and 300 names.

That Israel is making a list of people who might be vulnerable to accusations of having possibly committed war crimes is a de facto admission by the government that such crimes were in fact committed. The ICC will soon decide whether to move on the December request by ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda to investigate both Israel and Hamas over suspicions of war crimes in Gaza and Jerusalem as well as on the occupied West Bank beginning in 2014. The investigation would include “crimes allegedly committed in relation to the use by members of the IDF of non-lethal and lethal means against persons participating in demonstrations beginning in March 2018 near the border fence between the Gaza Strip and Israel, which reportedly resulted in the killing of over 200 individuals, including over 40 children, and the wounding of thousands of others.”

Given the time frame, Israeli government officials and military officers would likely be the first to face scrutiny by investigators. According to Haaretz, the list would almost certainly include “Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu; former defense ministers Moshe Ya’alon, Avigdor Lieberman and Naftali Bennett; former Israel Defense Forces chiefs of staff Benny Gantz and Gadi Eisenkot, and current Chief of Staff Aviv Kochavi; and the former and current heads of the Shin Bet security service, Yoram Cohen and Nadav Argaman, respectively.”

One wonders who would be included on a comparable list for the United States. There are a lot of lying politicians and sly generals to choose from. As both Israel and the United States do not recognize the authority of the ICC and will almost certainly refuse to participate in any fashion if the charges of war crimes and crimes against humanity ever actually make it to the court, any discussion of lists are at this point merely travel advisories for war criminals. The United States will push back and will inter alia certainly attempt to discredit the court using whatever weapons are available, to include sanctions against the nations that support any investigation and trial.

One nevertheless has to hope that the court will persevere in its effort to expose the crimes that continue to be committed by the U.S. and Israel in both Palestine and Afghanistan. Embarrassing Washington and Jerusalem in a very visible and highly respected international forum might be the only way to change the direction of the two nations that more than any other insist that “might makes right.”

July 23, 2020 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, War Crimes | , , , , , | 1 Comment

Bulgaria to complete TurkStream pipeline extension amid US threats to sanction Russian energy projects

RT | July 23, 2020

The Bulgarian section of the TurkStream natural gas pipeline from Russia, known as Balkan Stream, is set to be completed by the end of the year, according to the Russian Foreign Ministry.

The news that the construction of the gas pipeline is proceeding on schedule comes shortly after Washington updated the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA). The move paved the way to impose secondary sanctions on companies involved in Russian energy projects – Nord Stream 2 and the second line of TurkStream natural gas pipelines – both of which are under construction.

“Construction of the second branch of TurkStream on the territory of Bulgaria is going as planned and, according to our partners, will be completed by January 1 2021. [Bulgarian] Prime Minister Boyko Borissov keeps the project’s progress under personal control, regularly inspecting construction sites,” the head of the Russian Foreign Ministry’s Fourth European Department, Yuri Pilipson, told RIA Novosti.

The first part of the TurkStream pipeline has been pumping Russian gas to Turkey since its launch in January. The second part of the route, going through Bulgaria, Serbia and Hungary, to deliver gas to the European consumers, was not spared from the threat of US sanctions.

However, Sofia says that Washington’s restrictions will have no impact on the Balkan Stream, as the project, implemented by its operator Bulgartransgaz, meets all the EU rules. Thus the US has no grounds to impose sanctions on the pipeline, Bulgaria’s Energy Minister Temenuzhka Petkova told a local TV channel.

Bulgaria, which is already receiving gas from TurkStream, is currently building its part of the pipeline to carry Russian blue fuel from Turkey further into Serbia and Hungary. Belgrade earlier said it has long been ready to receive Russian gas imports after completing its section of the pipeline, but is still waiting for Bulgaria to finish theirs.

July 23, 2020 Posted by | Economics, Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity | Leave a comment

Twitter Bans “QAnon,” But Still Protects the Most Dangerous Disinfo

By Ulson Gunnar – New Eastern Outlook – 23.07.2020

While there are no doubts that the “QAnon” political movement is a purveyor of repeatedly absurd and unfounded claims, “predictions” so inaccurate and consistently wrong that it is difficult to take any of it seriously, Twitter’s move to across-the-board ban not only accounts associated with the movement but any talk of it citing fears of “offline harm” is even more absurd.

CNN in its article, “Twitter cracks down on QAnon accounts,” would claim (my emphasis):

Twitter is cracking down on accounts linked to QAnon, a group known for spreading conspiracy theories and disinformation online.

“We’ve been clear that we will take strong enforcement action on behavior that has the potential to lead to offline harm,” Twitter’s safety team said late Tuesday in a tweet. “In line with this approach, this week we are taking further action on so-called ‘QAnon’ activity across the service.”

CNN would also note specific measures Twitter is taking (my emphasis):

“We will permanently suspend accounts Tweeting about these topics that we know are engaged in violations of our multi-account policy, coordinating abuse around individual victims, or are attempting to evade a previous suspension — something we’ve seen more of in recent weeks,” Twitter said.

While deliberate campaigns of disinformation are almost certainly going to lead people who believe it into making poor real-life decisions that could potentially lead to “offline harm,” QAnon is not the only source of such disinformation nor the most dangerous.

The Most Dangerous Liars are Not Only Safe, They Have Blue Check Marks 

Twitter’s concern comes across particularly hollow when considering the US and European corporate media, outlets like CNN, Fox, MSNBC, the BBC, AP, AFP and Reuters.

They and their employees enjoy “blue check marks” handed out by Twitter and proudly displayed next to their names “proving” to others on Twitter that they are verified and “trusted.”

This includes lies and conspiracy theories regarding “weapons of mass destruction” they alleged were hidden in Iraq and required an invasion and subsequent occupation to “find” and “destroy.”Together, these “trusted” media platforms have repeatedly spread lies that have caused very real and catastrophic “offline harm.”

The weapons were never found, but hundreds of thousands of Iraqis would be slaughtered in the resulting war, millions more displaced and the nation ravaged by conflict and instability from 2003 to present day with US forces still occupying the country and these “blue check mark” accounts still promoting the US occupation.

Similar, now verified lies, were used to sell US wars of aggression in Afghanistan, Libya and Syria as well as US-led regime change in Ukraine where the US and European corporate media deliberately concealed the central role Neo-Nazi political parties and armed groups played in ousting the elected Ukrainian government.

Corporate Media Repeats Disinfo While Covering QAnon’s Ban for Disinfo…

What’s even more ironic is that this same corporate media, protected and promoted and now with an even larger monopoly over narratives discussed on Twitter, repeated lies even as it discussed QAnon’s ban.

CNN would claim (my emphasis):

Followers make unfounded claims and then amplify them with doctored or out-of-context evidence posted on social media to support the allegations.

The anarchical group’s birth, and its continued seepage into mainstream American life, comes on the coattails of the Russian disinformation campaign that targeted US elections in 2016.

While the Russian campaign had an apparent objective — influence voters to elect Trump — QAnon is decentralized, having no clear objective aside from its popular slogan, “Question everything.”

The “Russian disinformation campaign that targeted US elections in 2016″ was investigated for years with zero evidence ever emerging that it ever occurred.

Not only was no evidence ever found, but those accusing Russia of election interference were themselves caught posing as Russians to swing US elections. This includes the shadowy “New Knowledge” group who even submitted reports to the US Congress regarding “Russian disinformation.”

The Washington Post’s article, “Secret campaign to use Russian-inspired tactics in 2017 Ala. election stirs anxiety for Democrats,” would reveal New Knowledge involved in interference in Alabama elections.

While the misleading headline claims the interference used “Russian-inspired tactics,” in fact, the Post itself admits in its own article the tactics were simply to falsely accuse Russia of supporting a Republican candidate to poison voters against him.

The article explains (my emphasis):

The document, for example, says it “planted the idea that the Moore campaign was amplified on social media by a Russian botnet. We then tied that botnet to the Moore campaign digital director, making it appear as if he had purchased the accounts.” Morgan [CEO of New Knowledge] denied any knowledge of the incident involving Russian bots.

During the campaign, journalists wrote stories about Twitter accounts that appeared to be Russian followers of Moore.

Those accounts were later suspended by Twitter. The Post found an archived version of a misleading tweet and also several news reports and tweets by journalists during the Alabama election describing evidence that Russian bots were supporting Moore. The Project Birmingham document cited an article in the New York Post with the headline “Roy Moore flooded with fake Russian Twitter followers.”

Thus, not only was no evidence found that Russia interfered in the 2016 US election, those making those claims and even involved in the investigation were caught openly posing as “Russians” to taint targeted candidates and manipulate voters while simultaneously smearing Russia and adding extra weight to justify sanctions aimed at Russia’s economy.

Here we see the media covering QAnon’s banning, citing their own collection of debunked conspiracy theories, lies that have led to sanctions and conflict that have most certainly created “offline harm” for Russia, its economy and its people.

Should we hold our breath waiting for Twitter to ban them as well?

Twitter Shifting from Social Media to Programed Media 

With QAnon purged from Twitter, the way will be paved for Twitter to blanket ban and purge others, not for specific abuses of their terms of policy, but simply for holding or promoting a certain point of view.

It won’t be long before Twitter is entirely dominated by corporate media accounts and ordinary people who listen rather than speak out of fear of being next in line for Twitter’s growing purges.

Social media is clearly being transformed from a platform where people communicate with each other on equal terms, into something resembling traditional programed media where giant conglomerates pick what the public sees, and the public consumes rather than interacts with or contributes to it.

For individuals, organizations and others seeking a social media platform, it is clear Twitter (and Facebook for that matter) have long since become something else. For nations who do not have their own Twitter and Facebook alternatives, the increasingly controlled and manipulated nature of both platforms pose obvious national security risks.

When a platform is purging ordinary people for “disinformation” but providing “blue check marks” to individuals and organizations that have literally lied nations into war and sent hundreds of thousands of innocent people to their graves, it no longer serves any other purpose but as a vehicle for propaganda and propaganda that will most certainly be aimed at these vulnerable nations to cause “offline harm.”

While more traditional armed forces of the air, land and sea are still crucial for a nation’s defense, it is clear that nations now also need to defend their information space. Nations that take this threat seriously will be prepared and able to weather the storm that is clearly brewing. Those that do not, will suffer the fate of others who have faced US-led conflicts, in part, precipitated by America’s and Europe’s control over social media.

July 23, 2020 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance | | 1 Comment

Iraq to begin construction work on railway link to Iran: Iraqi official

Press TV – July 23, 2020

A senior Iraqi official says that work for a key rail link connecting the country to the neighboring Iran will begin in the very near future.

“The railway between Iran and Iraq through the Shalamcheh link will get going soon,” said Qasim al-Araji, a national security adviser to the Iraqi government, in a tweet posted on Thursday.

The announcement comes just days after a high-ranking Iraqi delegation travelled to Iran to discuss key issues with officials in Tehran.

The announcement by Araji, a former interior minister of Iraq, could be a sign that Iran and Iraq have reached fresh arrangements on how they can finish a project that that has stalled on the Iraqi side of the border for almost eight years.

Iran’s Mostazafan Foundation (MFJ), a semi-governmental charity with years of experience in construction activities, is responsible for funding and execution of the entire project in Iran and Iraq.

Iran has finished its side of the railway, a 17-koilometer link between the cities of Khoramshahr and Shalamcheh. However, MFJ plans for continuing the project into Iraq hit a snag in 2014 when the Arab country became involved in an extensive war on terror.

The $150-million project, which spans 47 kilometers through the two territories to reach the Iraqi city of Basra, has also faced issues like mine clearance inside Iraq.

Once finished, the railway could have major economic and geopolitical implications for Iraq.

It will serve as a major link on Iraq’s transit access through Iran to landlocked countries as of Central Asia and further to India and East Asia.

China also views the link as a major component of its new Silk Road scheme which runs through various territories to reach gateways of Europe, including through Iran, Iraq and Syria to the Mediterranean.

July 23, 2020 Posted by | Economics | , , , | 1 Comment

Israeli army sued for ‘dangerous’ levels of radiation

MEMO | July 23, 2020

The Israeli occupation army is being sued for exposing residents of a kibbutz to high levels of radiation in a lawsuit that serves to highlight the Zionist state’s discrimination against Palestinians. Farmers in the northern Negev who are said to have been unknowingly exposed to very strong radiation for six years and had their livelihood disrupted, are seeking approximately $1.3 million in compensation.

The lawsuit states that the Israeli army installed the Iron Dome system, funded by the US government, on fields belonging to an unnamed kibbutz in 2012 without informing residents of the danger it posed to their health. Five years later, reported Ynet News, they were told that they could not approach the fields near the area, a site at which they had worked freely until then, due to the very strong radiation that the system emits.

“The defendant [Israeli army] only recently remembered to update the kibbutz about the very strong radiation the systems emits, and that it is therefore strictly forbidden to engage in any agriculture work in the surrounding area,” the lawsuit states. “It will become clear that danger of radiation in the field was unknown until the defendant’s notice.”

It’s also claimed that the farmers were never compensated for damage to their territory and from being barred from cultivating in the area in which the system was installed. The Defence Ministry is thought to have promised compensation for such damage, which the lawsuit claims has yet to be paid eight years later.

Highlighting the damage to the land, the lawsuit states that, “As of 2012, the defendant took over an area of approximately 10 dunams [2.5 acres] for the purpose of installing missile defence systems to protect from ballistics coming from the Gaza Strip.”

The Israeli army and Defence Ministry told Ynet that, “The lawsuit has not yet been received by the defence establishment. When it is, it will be examined and answered as usual in court.”

Concerns over the Iron Dome were raised last year. Around 30 Israeli soldiers, the majority of whom operated the system, were said to be battling cancer.

For Palestinian farmers, this case will further highlight the structural racism under which they have suffered for decades. The theft of their land in order to build Jewish settler-only roads and illegal settlements, for example, is carried out without any compensation or recourse to any form of legal redress.

July 23, 2020 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Militarism | , , | Leave a comment