Aletho News


Ask The Experts

OffGuardian | December 9, 2020

Oracle Films, a Bristol-based production company, has released a video called Ask The Experts (Covid-19 Vaccine), uploaded on 7 December.

The video, made in collaboration with Fiona Hine, Founder of CoviLeaks, features 33 Doctors and a few other professionals – including some names you’ll be familiar with and others you won’t – who all urge caution regarding the CV-19 vaccine.

The video, recently banned from Facebook and Youtube, has received 55k views on brandnewtube (at the time of writing). We would have liked to embed this video here, however we can’t reliably embeded brandnewtube on this site at this time, for unknown reasons.

We’ve re-uploaded to bitchute (above), with the film-maker’s approval, but we encourage viewers to watch at the brandnewtube link, to help them climb the algorithm ladder.

The roster of experts include (in order of appearance):
Dr Andrew Kaufman,
Dr Hilde De Smet,
Dr Nils R Fosse,
Dr Elizabeth Evans,
Dr Mohammad Adil,
Dr Vernon Coleman,
Prof. Dolores Cahill,
Dr R Zac Cox,
Dr Anna Forbes,
Dr Ralf ER Sundberg,
Dr Johan Denis,
Dr Daniel Cullum,
Moritz von der Borch,
Dr Anne Fierlafijn,
Dr Tom Cowan,
Dr Kevin P. Corbett,
Dr Carrie Madej,
Dr Barre Lando,
Natural Nurse Kate Shemirani,
Pharmacist Sandy Lunoe,
Licensed Acupuncturist Boris Dragin,
Dr Piotr Rubas,
Dr Natalia Prego Cancelo,
Dr Rashid Buttar,
Dr Nour De San,
Dr Kelly Brogan,
Prof. Konstantin Pavlidis,
Dr Sherri Tenpenny,
Journalist Senta Depuydt,
Dr Heiko Santelmann,
Dr Margareta Griesz-Brisson,
Dr Mikael Nordforsa and
Dr Elke F. de Klerk

These qualified and largely orthodox medical voices are posing essential questions and bringing their expertise to bear on this imminent and highly controversial vaccine.

If there are some names that cause eyes to roll for some viewers, doubtless there will be many others here to grab your attention and make you think.

Oracle has collated an accessible, sharable collection of alternative viewpoints, and we hope they can continue with their valuable work. When we are force-fed a myth of scientific and medical consensus behind this vaccine and this pandemic on a minute-by-minute basis, such work has never been more valuable.

Oracle Films says of the video:

⁣This video is merely a compilation of doctors, scientists and activist who are offering their opinions. IN NO WAY do the views of any individual contributor to this video represent the views of anyone else shown. To confirm, this video contains a wide variety of views, all of which are exclusive to the individual expressing them.

⁣With the rollout of the you-know-what just around the corner, we ask a worldwide panel of experts the question on everybody’s minds #asktheexperts

Produced by Oracle Films

In collaboration with Fiona Hine, Founder of CoviLeaks

If you like our videos, please consider donating to help us keep producing content like this:

This video can be downloaded and re-uploaded on any non-monetised media channels.

December 13, 2020 Posted by | Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular, Video | , | Leave a comment

An Expert Military Analysis of War with China

Actually, None is Necessary

By Fred Reed • Unz Review • December 13, 2020

The Correlation of Armed Forces: U.S. goods and services trade with China totaled an estimated $634.8 billion in 2019. Exports were $163.0 billion; imports were $471.8 billion. The U.S. goods and services trade deficit with China was $308.8 billion in 2019. Trade in services with China (exports and imports) totaled an estimated $76.7 billion in 2019. Services exports were $56.5 billion; services imports were $20.1 billion. The U.S. services trade surplus with China was $36.4 billion in 2019.

There is talk within the Washingtoniat of a possible war with China. Steve Bannon, who apparently was dropped on his head as a child, actually favors such a war. We hear the usual shoo-the-boobs alarm about how the Chinese are doing something terrible and we must gird our loins and American values and show them what for, bow wow, woof. The danger is that the current game of who-blinks-first in Asian waters might actually provoke a shooting war. You know the kind of thing: One warship refuses to get out of the way of another, a collision ensues, some retard lieutenant who signed up on waivers opens fire, and we’re off and running. It is not a good idea to let children play with matches.

The said war is discussed either in emotional terms by idiots or in purely naval terms by those familiar with such things, so we hear of the First Island Chain and the Second Island Chain and whose missiles against the other’s missiles and so on. This would be appropriate if we were fighting World War Two again. Which we aren’t. Let’s take a quick-and-dirty look at how such a war might go.

To begin the war, America would overestimate itself and underestimate China. This is doctrine in the Pentagon. There is probably a manual on it. Inside the DC Bubble, fern-bar Napoleons would assure us that it would be a short war, a cakewalk, a matter of days, not weeks. You know, like Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria. When it turned out that the Chinese had other ideas, among which surrendering was not, and the months dragged on, various fascinating things would happen.

Rand, a thinktank wholly owned by the Pentagon, at least mentally, has wargamed both the Taiwan Strait and the South China Sea, concluding that the war could be both very long and a loss for America. We no longer live in 1960.

OK, the war: On day one, all the multitudinous American factories in China shut down. Example: Apple loses its factories, products from those factories, and the Chinese market of 1.4 billion consumers. Its stores close. Tim Cook’s gratitude will know no bounds. American auto manufacturers sell googolplexes of cars in China (or at least lots), mostly made in China. Overnight they will lose factories, cars, and Chinese customers. Overall, China buys many more cars than does the US. This analysis, if anything so obvious may be called analysis, can be repeated for industry after industry after industry. Goodbye, business vote.

Within weeks, Walmart’s shelves go bare. Walk down the aisles and read the “Made in” labels. We are not talking only plastic buckets and mops but chain saws, pharmaceuticals, motorcycles, and blood-pressure cuffs. So much for the blue-collar vote. The US buys 472 billion in goods annually from China, high-tech, low-tech, consumer goods, manufacturing components. No more.

China buys over $163 billion annually in American goods: petroleum, semiconductors, airline engines, soybeans, airliners, on and on. No more. It is hard to underestimate the joy this will cause in influential boardrooms. And of course the American workers who would have produced these things for China will be laid off. As electoral politics, this will prove suboptimal.

China produces a great majority of the rare earth elements crucial to the manufacture of electronics, such as semiconductors. No quick substitute is in sight. Just about everything in America uses these, to include the computers that run the electrical systems of cars. Though I haven’t checked, it is quite possible that the computers themselves are made in China. If you want a new and deeper understanding of the word “hostile,” check the influential CEOs of businesses on their second chipless day.

In a real war, it is likely that China, having thought of the foregoing, would (intelligently) destroy Taiwan’s semiconductor fabs, notably those of TSMC, as well as other factories of electronics. This would hardly be difficult since the Taiwan Strait is only a hundred or so miles wide. Losing these industries would be exceedingly painful for the US since its high-end chips come from Taiwan. It would take America years to replace this capacity domestically. Some of the necessary equipment, extreme ultraviolet lithography machines, is not made in America and in any event cannot be stamped out like beer cans.

In America it would quickly be discovered that the country is rather more dependent on China than some might think. If I may make up an example: The automotive industry finds that its sparkplugs come from China. While America could certainly make spark plugs, it turns out that a decade back the industry found that China could make them for forty percent less. In the cooperative commercial world pre-Trump, this was no problem. Not now. So much for sales of cars. And for the jobs of the workers who make them.

I will bet you all my diamond mines in South Africa and cattle lands in Argentina, that if you went through a parts list for, say, Boeing’s airliners, you would find lots of them made in China. Sure, the US could manufacture most of them, eventually. But companies need parts now, not eventually.

The effects on other countries of a large war against China would be catastrophic if not worse. Other countries also get many things, from China or Taiwan, such as semiconductors. Google on “country x largest trading partner.” A strong pattern quickly becomes clear: China is huge in trading with practically everybody. “Everybody” includes Germany, Japan, Australia, Russia, and South America as a whole. The world economy in its entirety would collapse.

How smart would this be? The United States is already in serious trouble, what with a currency rapidly being debased, a sinking middle class, businesses dying of Covid, jobs disappearing abroad, people living paycheck to paycheck, and social unhappiness resulting in continent-wide riots. Do you suppose the public will gladly support an unfathomably stupid war causing an instant, profound, and murderous economic depression? If so, you probably already have a collection of bridges.

This can be inflicted on the entire earth by a half-dozen loons in or circling around the White House unhindered by a worthless Congress. Six loons. Yes, I know, Trump is unlikely deliberately to start a Third world War, even as a publicity stunt. No, the generals in the Pentagon are not nearly stupid enough. (They might even refuse, pointing out that starting a war requires a declaration by Congress.) The problem is that for years America has been, if not actually looking for a fight, at least daring other countries to start one. For example, murdering Iranian officials, pulling out of arms-control treaties, pushing NATO ever closer to Russia, sanctioning countries far beyond anything that can be called a trade war, and playing chicken with China in the South China Sea. Under these circumstances you can get a fight without quite looking for one.

Write Fred at Put the letters pdq anywhere in the subject line to avoid heartless autodeletion.

December 13, 2020 Posted by | Economics, Militarism, Timeless or most popular | , | 1 Comment

Democratic National Committee’s ‘intervention’ to blame for chaos at 2020 Iowa caucuses: Audit reveals

RT | December 13, 2020

An audit commissioned by the Iowa Democratic Party has found that the national Democratic Party’s “intervention” in the process led to the delayed and questioned results at the very beginning of the 2020 presidential election.

The Iowa caucuses should have kicked off a frontrunner in the race for the party’s presidential nomination. Two of the candidates – South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg and Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders – were claiming they were winning the contest in a key state that often defines the eventual winner. However, inconsistencies in reporting results led many to question them, for example the Associated Press announced it did not have enough faith in the process to declare a winner at the time.

Back then, the eventual nominee, Joe Biden, did not get enough support in Iowa to even be among the top three candidates in the state, trailing behind Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren. However, Buttigieg later handed all the delegates he won in Iowa to the former vice president, giving him a much-needed advantage over Bernie Sanders in the national fight for the nomination.

The report, released on Saturday, found that the DNC was responsible for delaying a new app meant to report results quicker, and their demand for last-minute technology to be implemented into the process ultimately led to a chaotic event.

“Without the DNC’s intervention in that process, the IDP may have reported results in real-time as it intended,” said the report, which also cast blame on the state party for not creating a back-up plan for reporting results.

“As of the Friday before the caucuses, the IDP knew there were only approximately 400 temporary precinct chairs (out of more than 1,700) who had successfully downloaded and accessed the app,” the report said. “The IDP should have taken aggressive steps to scale up its telephone back-up reporting system at that time.”

The leadup to the caucuses was peppered with confusion between state party officials and the DNC. The new report claims development of an app by Shadow Inc. was supposed to begin in July and end in November, leaving two months for training and implementation. The DNC, however, expressed security concerns with the state party, halting negotiations for months, leading to a rushed development process. The app was eventually rolled out only weeks before the caucuses were set to begin.

Shadow Inc. earlier received thousands of dollars from the Buttigieg campaign for developing a separate app. It was also contracted by Joe Biden’s campaign in the past as well.

On election night, the state party found itself unprepared to take results by phone as many volunteers chose not to work with the buggy app. The DNC also made a last minute requirement that Shadow provide them with real-time results so they could double-check state numbers, something the report claims the company was not prepared for and led to a halt in releasing results to the public as discrepancies in numbers were found and the last-minute demand created confusion.

“Attempting to graft an entirely new software element onto the back-end reporting system at the proverbial eleventh hour is likely always going to be problematic, and it was ultimately the cause of a major problem on caucus night,” the report said.

The report found that eventually votes could be confirmed through a manual paper system and claimed results submitted through the app were ultimately “accurately reported.”

DNC officials put the blame of the chaos on state party representatives in the weeks following the caucus.

Critics have responded to the report’s lengthy findings by chalking it up to the DNC trying to control or even “cheat” the results.

“In 2016, the DNC’s top 5 officials were forced to resign when WikiLeaks published proof they systematically cheated to prevent Bernie from beating Hillary,” reporter Glenn Greenwald tweeted on Sunday, referring to emails from 2016 showing national party officials favoring a Clinton victory over Sanders, ultimately leading to multiple resignations.

“In the first caucus of 2020 (Iowa), they cheated again, with the same goal. They blamed the state Party but it was the DNC,” Greenwald added.

December 13, 2020 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Deception | , , | Leave a comment

US plan to blacklist Iraqi Badr Organization as terrorist meant to protect Israel: Official

Press TV – December 13, 2020

A senior member of the Badr Organization, whose group is a part of the Iraqi Popular Mobilization Forces (PMU), also known by their Arabic name Hashd al-Sha’abi, has slammed Washington’s attempts to classify his organization as terrorist, stressing that such measures are meant to protect the Israeli regime.

“We do not care about the White House’s efforts to place the Badr Organization on the [so-called] US terror blacklist. Badr is an organization that has its own supporters and institutions. It is represented by a parliamentary faction and has more than 50 legislators in Fatah (Conquest) Alliance,” Qusay al-Anbari, a spokesman for the organization, told Arabic-language al-Ahad news agency on Saturday.

He added, “Badr Organization is a part of the Iraqi political system and nation, and will not be affected by such evil plots. Everyone knows that the United States is working to protect the Zionist regime through various means, and is fighting resistance groups to prevent them from defending Palestine and the Arab world.”

The remarks come as the US Congress is seeking to enact a new legislation that would designate the Badr Organization as a terror group, according to a copy of the bill obtained exclusively by the Washington Free Beacon newspaper.

The newspaper said that a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Representative Joe Wilson, is leading such efforts.

Back on October 18, a political adviser to Iraqi officials and leading member of the State of Law Coalition said the United States is trying to eradicate Hashd al-Sha’abi by force and has even devised an action plan for such a purpose.

Saad al-Muttalibi told Arabic-language al-Nujaba television network in an interview at the time that not only had Iraqi authorities been informed of the plan, but also some political factions.

Muttalibi noted that a number of US state institutions have come to the conclusion that Hashd al-Sha’abi can only be removed from Iraq’s arena by military force.

He went on to say that Washington intends to assassinate some high-ranking Hashd al-Sha’abi commanders and instigate clashes with other Iraqi armed forces as part of preparation for the total annihilation of the PMU.

Hashd al-Sh’abai fighters have played a major role in the liberation of Daesh-held areas to the south, northeast and north of the Iraqi capital Baghdad, ever since the terrorists launched an offensive in the country in June 2014.

Back in November 2016, the Iraqi parliament approved a law giving full legal status to the fighters. It recognized the PMU as part of the national armed forces, placed the forces under the command of the prime minister, and granted them the right to receive salaries and pensions like the regular army and police forces.

On March 27, the New York Times reported that the Pentagon had ordered a secret directive, which called on US military commanders to prepare a campaign against Kata’ib Hezbollah, which is part of Hashd al-Sha’abi.

But the United States’ top commander in Iraq at the time, Lieutenant General Robert P. White, warned that such a campaign could be bloody and counterproductive.

December 13, 2020 Posted by | Illegal Occupation, Wars for Israel | , , | 1 Comment

NBC News reports evidence of alleged Hunter Biden corruption

© REUTERS / Jim Bourg
RT | December 13, 2020

An email seen by NBC News indicates that Hunter Biden failed to pay taxes on profit from his Ukrainian board position. NBC was bombarded with comments explaining how the story is probably false and still irrelevant, if true.

According to the broadcaster, the son of presumed President-elect Joe Biden may have failed to include in his tax returns the $400,000 he received from the Ukrainian energy company Burisma in 2014. This is a conclusion from an email, received by NBC, which was sent to Hunter Biden in 2017 by his business partner, Eric Schwerin, who was then the president of Rosemont Seneca Partners.

“In 2014 you joined the Burisma board and we still need to amend your 2014 returns to reflect the unreported Burisma income,” the email dated January 16, 2017 said as cited by NBC News.

Hunter Biden joined Burisma in 2014, shortly after the ousting of Ukraine’s president at the time Viktor Yanukovich, with the Obama administration showing its support to the protesters. Then-Vice President Joe Biden is considered to be the mastermind behind policy on Ukraine at the time.

Before getting the well-paid gig, Hunter Biden had no background in energy or Eastern European affairs – something that didn’t stop Burisma from hiring him to take a board position.

The Trump administration claimed that Joe Biden had later abused his government office to lean on Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko and have him fire a prosecutor, who was investigating Burisma. Biden shared publicly how he pressured the Ukrainian leader, but insisted it was done to get rid of a corrupt Ukrainian official. The incumbent US president was impeached this year at the Democrat-controlled House for asking Poroshenko’s successor to investigate the allegations of impropriety.

The NBC news story comes with a caveat: the email comes from a trove of documents recovered from a laptop that Hunter Biden allegedly left in a Delaware repair shop and which became the centerpiece of a censorship scandal shortly before the November 3 presidential election. The laptop and its contents were reported by the New York Post, but many other US media outlets dismissed it as a likely piece of “Russian disinformation” and refused to cover it.

Facebook and Twitter throttled dissemination of the Post’s reporting on their platform. Users were initially prohibited from sharing links to the story altogether and the newspaper’s account was suspended for days.

After the election, it was reported that federal prosecutors in Delaware were looking into Hunter Biden’s financial affairs and dealings with China since at least 2018. He confirmed that he was under investigation and expressed confidence that the probe would establish that he handled his affairs legally and appropriately.

Social media reaction to the fresh email revelation shows a strong desire to again dismiss alleged corruption in the Biden family. Many latched on to the source of the email to claim that it must be a fabrication.

The Biden campaign dismissed the laptop story as a partisan attack on the ex-VP’s bid for presidency, but never challenged the authenticity of the underlying materials.

Those willing to accept possible wrongdoing by Hunter Biden chose another line of defense – saying that his alleged tax evasion has nothing to do with his father.

And there was of course a great deal of ‘whataboutism’ involving Trump’s undisclosed tax returns and the business affairs of his family.

Days before the election, NBC News published a long explainer of its reaction to the Hunter Biden laptop story. It cited several reasons for not covering it, including not having access to the source material, claims by former intelligence officials that it has “hallmarks” of Russian disinformation and a lack of proof of corruption of then-candidate Biden shown in what was published.

Another major factor, according to the article, was that the laptop was not expected to reveal much new information about Hunter Biden, his apparent cashing in on his family name and allegations that he peddled access and influence of his father.

December 13, 2020 Posted by | Corruption, Deception, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Timeless or most popular | | Leave a comment

Frauds: The Election, Media, Congressional Dems, and the FBI

By Clarice Feldman | American Thinker | December 13, 2020

The first of this week’s two biggest stories was Friday evening’s action by the Supreme Court refusing to hear the lawsuit brought by Texas and other states respecting the evident fraud in the balloting in Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Georgia, and Michigan. I expressed my views on this yesterday here: ‘A Republic, If You Can Keep It’ | The Pipeline

In short, I believe if the Court had decided to take it, it would not have decided who won these states. Instead, had it decided that the electors from those states were chosen illegally, it would have remanded the complaints to the legislatures of these states, which have the responsibility to fashion a remedy. In any event, had they decided to throw out the electoral votes of those states, Biden would still have one more electoral vote than President Trump, as the majority is determined by the number of electoral votes actually cast. It’s now up to the state legislatures and Congress to decide what to do with the votes from the states in question and the Texas filing provides an excellent template for deciding the votes from those and other states where fraud was rampant — either pick a different slate of electors or provide no slate from those states. If the state legislatures fail in their responsibilities, at the demand of one congressman and one senator, any electoral slate can be challenged and the outcome of the challenge is determined by the House of Representatives voting by delegation, a system in which the Republicans have the most delegations and, therefore, the most votes.

The second most significant matter, in my view, was the clear gaslighting the media and former intelligence officials carried out on the Hunter Biden story, hiding the fact that he’s been under criminal investigation since 2018 for bribery, tax evasion, and money laundering from, among other sources, China. Drew Holden and Arthur Schwartz rounded up the evidence of this gaslighting. That it was effective in its bad faith effort at keeping relevant information about Chinese bribery of the Biden family and their consummate corruption in time to affect the election is clear. One survey reports that nearly 10% of those who voted for Biden in key states would not have, had they known about this scandal which the major media deeply hid from them.

Knowing about the scandals involving Biden’s son Hunter’s dealings with officials and firms in China, Ukraine and Russia would have prompted 9.4 percent of those surveyed to change their vote, according to the survey of 1,750 Biden voters in Nevada, Georgia, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Arizona, and Michigan.

All the fact-free media claims that the Biden corruption was “Russian disinformation” served only to bury the truth that these and other government figures were captives of the Chinese government, a government of ruthless ambitions against both us and their own people. Interestingly, the press that swatted away the report in the NYPost about Hunter as “Russian Disinformation” were the very same people who on zero evidence accused President Trump of Russian collusion for 3 1/2 years.

Just as interesting were the 50 former intelligence officers, including John Brennan and James Clapper, who had not been briefed about Hunter Biden, but all the same claimed that the story about his corruption had all the characteristics of “Russian disinformation.”

Hunter and Joe Biden were not the only people unmasked as Chinese stooges this week. Congressman Eric Swalwell was as well when the story broke that he had been too close — how close he hasn’t denied — to a Chinese honeypot spy while he sat on the House Intelligence Committee, recipients of the most secret of our intelligence gathering. Even more damning is that Speaker Nancy Pelosi put Swalwell in that position after the FBI notified her that he had been compromised. Congressman Adam Schiff, chair of that committee, was also informed and it didn’t bother him. Instead he peddled lies about Trump and Russia for years and bottled up evidence that the claims were baseless. Just as the agency stoked and never rebutted the claims of Russian collusion against Trump, which it knew at the very outset were false, they did nothing to deal with Swalwell’s having been compromised.

Tammy Bruce nailed it:

Now clear: FBI *knew* Rep. Swalwell was compromised via a Chinese spy, yet spent the last 4 years pushing an accusation against @realDonaldTrump they KNEW was false & helped perpetuate. But don’t worry, our system would totally not compromise the election.

— Tammy Bruce (@HeyTammyBruce) December 8, 2020

Indeed, the FBI has a great deal to answer for and in a better world would be stripped of its counterintelligence functions and more.

Don Surber has dubbed the agency “The KGB for Democrats,” and he has a solid point. It has, as he notes, been in recent years covering up for Democrats and besetting those that the Democrats don’t like. It’s hard to take issue with his examples:

The FBI actually aids and abets crime. Its investigation of Hillary’s sale of state secrets through 33,000 private emails focused not on prosecuting her, but on destroying all evidence of her crimes, including the computer she used. [snip]

Then there is Seth Rich, the man who blew the whistle on the DNC and sent to Wikileaks a thumb drive of incriminating emails. Everyone in DC knows he was murdered. No one is investigating.

Ty Clevenger represents Brian Huddleston in a lawsuit against the FBI. He cannot get the bureau to turn over records. His FOIA lawsuit did get an admission from the bureau.

Clevenger wrote:

“After three years of claiming that it could not find any records about murdered Democratic National Committee employee Seth Rich, the FBI admitted today that it has thousands of pages of information about him, further admitting that it has custody of his laptop.” [snip]

The FBI does not work for the American people. If it did, it would have told Obama to pound salt when he demanded the FBI spy on Donald John Trump. Instead it lied to federal judges and spied.

Four years later, only one poor soul has been prosecuted. No other prosecution is expected.

Then there is Hunter Biden’s laptop filled with details of corruption, bribes, and sex with underage women in Red China.

It sat on that laptop for a year. The good citizen who turned it in lost his business and is now in hiding.

The corrupt agency is now involved in a wide-ranging investigation of sexual misconduct, conducted by the Office of the Inspector General.

At week’s end Senator Ted Cruz wrote to FBI Director Christopher Wray and Attorney General William Barr, noting that under oath former director James Comey and former deputy director Andrew McCabe‘s testimony about their knowledge and approval of the 2016 Clinton media leak is at odds, that one of them lied under oath, a federal crime. He wants an investigation to determine which one is the liar.

Lying partisans from top to bottom.

With all this going on, it’s no surprise that disinfectants are in such demand and they are hard to find in the market.

December 13, 2020 Posted by | Corruption, Deception, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Russia on track to have one of its largest-ever grain harvests

RT | December 13, 2020

This year’s grain crop in Russia is set to exceed 131 million tons, according to the Ministry of Agriculture. This would be one of the country’s largest harvests, second only to the record 135.5 million tons recorded in 2017.

“Today we can talk about the completion of the harvest season in Russia. Grains are almost completely crushed. So, we can say with confidence that in 2020 our farmers provided one of the most significant harvests in the country’s recent history,” said the head of the ministry, Dmitry Patrushev, during a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The latest figures beat earlier expectations. The ministry had said in September it expected this year’s grain harvest to stand at 122.5 million tons.

Russia’s booming agricultural production has surged by 20 percent over the last six years. The country has managed to capture more than half of the global wheat market, becoming the world’s biggest exporter of grain, thanks to bumper harvests and attractive pricing. Since the early 2000s, Russia’s share of the global wheat market has quadrupled. In 2018-2019, Russia delivered 35.2 million tons of wheat to the global market.

Supported by a massive grain harvest, the country is projected to retain its leadership in the world’s wheat market in the coming years.

December 13, 2020 Posted by | Economics | | Leave a comment

Why this campaign of terror?

Never outside war time have populations been subjected to such outrageous assault and battery by government propaganda machines

By Gillian Dymond | OffGuardian | December 13, 2020

In the morning, the world is as the world should be. The sun rises, as predicted for this part of England in early December, at around twenty past eight. Shortly after this, I get up, go through the usual morning routines, have a quick breakfast, wash up, and am at my computer by ten o’clock. The hours pass unexceptionably until lunchtime. And then I can no longer put off the trip to the shops.

Going to the shops is something I do as little as possible nowadays. Once I might have walked in and out of the nearby town centre several times in a day, without thinking twice: but that was when I could move from home to street seamlessly, with no jarring transition between here and there.

Now it’s different. Now, beyond the protective confines of our home lies a parallel universe, a place of outlandish rituals and dogmas, where grotesquely masked figures pass each other warily on the street or, in the supermarket, lurk out-of-touch behind symbolic plastic screens. Instead of muzak, as I follow the prescribed route between the aisles, disembodied voices warn of death and disease, order me to protect myself and others by maintaining distance and keeping my plague-ridden exhalations to myself.

“We’re in this together!” they proclaim.

In less than a year some malign necromancy has transformed the fearless social beings who once thronged shops and cafés in the run-up to each Christmas into an infestation of dangerous, outsized germs: or, if scrupulous examination of the facts has left you confident that “the novel coronavirus” is no more threatening to moderately healthy people than the nastier brands of flu, into the crazed adherents of some apocalyptic cult.

Since I have spent the past nine months scrupulously examining the facts, the eyes now peering out at me over the inadequate face-covering of that woman beating a hasty retreat behind the cans of tuna as I approach are, it seems to me, those of a poor, unhinged lunatic. But then, I am an unbeliever. I do not wear the mask of allegiance. Marked out by the lanyard around my neck, I do my shopping as quickly as possible, and hurry back to the embattled sanity of domestic life.

Yes, even here embattled: for as the onslaught of propaganda continues without remission, only complete divorce from the outside world can afford protection. Fortunately, since the arrival of the computer I am beyond the reach of programmed television, but in order to wake to the accompaniment of pleasant but undemanding music, I used to put up with the intermittent smattering of adverts on Classic FM. Now that government has become the media’s most lucrative source of income, however, this is no longer tolerable. Who wants to be roused abruptly from sleep by inane incantations of “Hands! Face! Place!”, sometimes repeated twice within five minutes ?

“It’s just an actor!” my husband pleads with me, as I hurl execrations, and worse, at the radio. But whether it comes from actors or health ministers, the brain-washing stinks. “Don’t you just long for a nice commercial about sofas?” a friend asks mournfully, as we discuss the incremental take-over of advertising slots by the government’s ‘nudge unit‘. Even bona fide adverts from the likes of Boots and the big supermarkets are made nauseous by mealy-mouthed assurances of “safe” shopping. The only kind of safe shopping I long for is shopping safe from constant reminders of The Virus: shopping unmasked and convivially mingling; the chance to browse unimpeded in bookshops, and linger socially-undistanced over cups of coffee in a crowded café.

Why this campaign of terror, you have to ask? Why, in the midst of a genuine pandemic, would anyone need to be reminded unceasingly that death is dogging their footsteps? That at any moment The Virus, wafted abroad by some super-spreader passed fleetingly in the street, might  be insinuating itself into one’s body – or, worse, that we ourselves, infected but unaffected, might be silently contaminating a loved-one?

The short answer is, they wouldn’t. In a genuine pandemic, this constant mental battering would be superfluous. If the Black Death were raging outside my door, government would know full well that they didn’t have to fork out millions to convince me to stay inside;  more likely, they would have to pay me to leave the house.

Yet this government has bought the mass media lock, stock and barrel, at vast expense, with the sole purpose, it seems, of hammering home a message of impending doom. Instead of calming our fears with facts and rational arguments, they have seen fit to flood the airwaves with slogans calculated to maintain panic; with disingenuous appeals to the emotions; with out-of-context death counts, wilful obfuscation of the difference between cases and infections, a criminally dodgy PCR test and graphs and computer models (rubbish in, rubbish out) carefully selected to emphasise the worst possible eventualities.

And not content to cow us into submission with a constant diet of skewed and incomplete information, they have unleashed the army’s 77 Brigade to troll social media exchanges and snuff out any lingering dissent  –  or, as the government prefer to call it, “misinformation“. The aim can only be to induce maximum public terror in the face of a virus which, without all this deceptive ballyhoo, would hardly have been noticed by the population at large.

Why are they doing this? Surely, by now, they must be aware that increasing numbers of highly esteemed and experienced scientists contest policies which are killing vastly more people than they are saving, and which will go on killing well into the future!

True, non-scientists could get lost in all the reams of conflicting information churned out since we were first put on terror alert back in February and March, but one question is both fundamental and easily answered: are excess mortality figures for this year significantly above average? Only a huge and sustained divergence from the norm would indicate the presence of a new disease deadly enough to justify the extraordinary measures the government have taken.

The Euromomo charts for the UK show no such anomaly. In Northern Ireland there has never been any substantial increase in deaths overall. In Wales, too, mortality has hardly diverged from the normal range.  Scotland had a well-above-average peak in the spring, but since then has remained almost entirely within the bounds of normality. Even populous England, despite a death rate which soared sharply to a great height in March before falling equally sharply back by the middle of June, has spent most of the year chugging along below the “substantial increase” line, with the usual increase as winter approaches. A further chart at Covid-19 in Proportion? shows that,

Levels of mortality in 2019/2020 are very similar to those suffered in 1999/2000

Definitely not the Black Death, then, nor even the 1918 influenza. In fact, one of the world’s premier epidemiologists, John Ioannidis, has long been assuring us that the infection fatality rate of Covid-19 is comparable with that of a bad flu. His early estimate, in March, of a case fatality rate in the general population of between 0.05% and 1.0%, as indicated by the outbreak on the cruise ship Diamond Princess  –  a conclusion for which the eminent professor was, hilariously, censored by the non-scientists at YouTube.

Yet now we are being told that only mass vaccination against this fairly run-of-the-mill virus will allow us to return to any semblance of normal life. By special dispensation, millions of doses of insufficiently tested vaccine are already in the pipeline, with a guarantee of no come-back for Big Pharma or for doctors turning a blind eye to the precept “First to do no harm”, should those treated be hit with damaging repercussions on their health or, indeed, on life itself.

We are told that we should all accept the suspect panacea regardless, in order to beat “this dreadful virus”: it’s quite safe  –  honest, you’ve got my word for it, says Matt Hancock. Yet, side-effects apart, there is no assurance that the Pfizer vaccine, received with jubilation on 8th December by its first grateful recipient, will be effective in preventing either the disease or its transmission: and even if it does turn out to offer initial protection, this may last for as little as three months, so presumably regular repeat injections will be required.

What? Repeat injections! Are the young and healthy facing a lifetime of booster shots against a disease that is dangerous almost exclusively to the old and sick? And if this isn’t crazy enough, we are being told that, even while being turned into human pin-cushions, we will probably need to go on wearing masks and holding our friends and family at arm’s length well into the future: a future, it is hinted, of health passports and routine mass surveillance, if we wish to travel on public transport or generally engage in life beyond our doorstep.

This, it seems, will be the New Normal  –  but not to worry! After all, you’re already masking up automatically when you leave the house, aren’t you, and following the one-way footsteps on the pavement as a matter of course? And if it becomes too much of a nuisance to carry your proof of vaccination around with you, well, we should soon be able to offer you the trouble-free alternative of an implanted microchip, to cover all eventualities: health; finance; your social credit score …

Sometimes I think it would be better to be one of the masked zombies. Trusting, obedient, they live in a world which, though threatening, they understand and accept. It is real to them. They know, unquestioningly, that a dreadful plague has been visited upon us, a plague which threatens to wipe out the species: and they know that if they wear their masks faithfully, wash their hands a thousand times a day and steer clear of other human beings, they will be doing their bit to save the nation, and, eventually, be granted the supreme unction of a vaccine; after which, they believe, everything will go back to normal  –  perhaps with a few more bicycle lanes and wind farms, and somewhat fewer jobs  –  but hey!  –  what will that matter, when the nice, compassionate government is promising us all a Universal Basic Income?

For the rest of us, it’s not so simple. The rest of us must live in a world where our own perceptions are remorselessly challenged by the prevailing lie. Guided by rational thought processes and the evidence, we know that we are at no more risk from Covid-19 this year than we were in previous years from one of the more aggressive strains of influenza, but as soon as we venture into the outside world, everything contradicts our inner reality: and though we may not participate actively in the masquerade, we are condemned to a perpetual state of cognitive dissonance, compelled to acquiesce silently in the grand illusion being played out all around us, under the direction of the government.

And to what end ?

If it were ever possible to put the enormities which have taken place since last March down to mere blundering, it certainly is not now. The argument that the government has simply blundered, and is now trying to save face by digging itself in deeper does not wash. Nor does the line about saving the NHS. The NHS has regularly survived winter flu seasons which saw beds lined up in corridors and staff rushed off their feet.

Besides, the Nightingale hospitals were quickly whisked into existence: and if the amount of money poured by the government into fear porn and the purchase of dud PCR tests and hastily concocted vaccines had been diverted into more beds, plus better pay for nurses and other non-administrative staff, the lesson might at last have been learned, and future winters made less chaotic.

It was obvious from the start to anyone with a basic education who bothered to check the facts that closing down the economy would be more damaging to life and limb than any virus. Why was this not also obvious to a prime minister with a PPE degree from Oxford, who is surrounded by whole cohorts of colleagues and advisers armed with equally prestigious qualifications?

Even granting an initial surge of panic when faced with hysterical predictions from the Imperial College fortune-telling team, it would have been possible to withdraw in fairly good order after the first lockdown, when many scientists were already saying that the danger had been exaggerated, that the virus was now endemic, and widespread natural immunity was in sight.

Why didn’t our government seize the opportunity, in June, to give themselves a pat on the back, announce that the lockdown had worked, and ease us all back into rationality via an interval of sensible voluntary precautions, as practised in Sweden?

Given a modification of the propaganda, the country would have believed them. When adroitly handled by the Behavioural Insights Team the country, it appears, will believe anything.

Why, then, insist on sticking to the advice of SAGE, and continuing to give credence to the serially failed speculations of Neil Ferguson, rather than attending to the more balanced suggestions offered by Carl Heneghan and Sunetra Gupta?

Instead, the government chose to fan the flames of fear with an intensification of propaganda and orders to mask up, extending the reign of unjustified terror into the autumn, when the annual onset of respiratory diseases began to fill up hospital beds, and allowed the death counts and lockdowns to resume. One by one, those small businesses which survived the first onslaught are giving up the ghost, and it seems that our rulers will not rest content until every last man, woman and child in Britain has been thrown into the linked arms of corporate and state dependency.

What price conspiracy “theories” now? What we are dealing with are facts.

As countries throughout the world commit consensual suicide to a rousing chorus of “Build Back Better!”, what makes more sense? To shake the head in puzzlement, that so many nations, with one accord, should not only have made exactly the same mistakes earlier this year, but are now insisting, in unison, on entrenching the evils that have been unleashed?

Or to contemplate the possibility that a network of powerful supranational agencies – banks, corporations, NGOs  –  have for some time been collaborating to direct the course of world events through placemen and beneficiaries in local and national governments and their attendant bureaucracies, and that “the novel coronavirus” is being used to achieve the final push into an era of artfully camouflaged “global governance”: an era where policies devised by centralised, unelected committees are handed down to elected heads of state in the shells of what were once independent nations, and passed on by them to regional mayors and administrators for implementation and enforcement.

I caught the Asian flu in 1957. So did my mother: the only time I ever knew her to take a couple of days off work. The infection swept through the country, and tens of thousands died. In 1968 the Hong Kong flu passed me by, but once again the death toll was in the tens of thousands.

On neither occasion was it considered necessary to destroy millions of lives and livelihoods by closing the country down, nor was any attempt made to terrorise its inhabitants. Covid-19 is no more lethal than either of those previous infections  –  less so, unless you actually believe that all those currently described as dying “with Covid”, or dying within 28 days of testing positive, actually died from Covid. Never before have such destructive policies been inflicted on the nation in a futile attempt to wipe out a virus. Never before, outside war time, has the population of the UK been subjected to such outrageous assault and battery by a government propaganda machine.

Draw what conclusion you will. I’m off to feed the ducks. They don’t do anti-social distancing, and they don’t wear masks.

December 13, 2020 Posted by | Economics, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity, Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular | , | 1 Comment

48% Of U.S. Small Businesses Fear They May Be Forced To “Shut Down Permanently” Soon

By Michael Snyder | The Economic Collapse | December 10, 2020

What would the United States look like if we lost half of our small businesses? The reason I ask that question is because approximately half of all small business owners in the entire country believe that they may soon be forced to close down for good. Not even during the Great Depression of the 1930s did we see anything like this.  The big corporate giants with extremely deep pockets will be able to easily weather another round of lockdowns, but for countless small businesses this is literally a matter of life and death. Every day we are seeing new restrictions being implemented somewhere in the nation, and the politicians that are doing this are killing the hopes and dreams of countless small business owners. According to a recent Alignable survey, 48 percent of U.S. small business owners fear that they could be forced to “shut down permanently” in the very near future…

Based on this week’s Alignable Q4 Revenue Poll of 9,201 small business owners, 48% could shut down permanently before year’s end.

In fact, this number jumped from 42% just two months ago, demonstrating how several factors have converged to devastate small businesses: COVID resurgences, forced government reclosures, elevated customer fears, and a surge in online shopping at Amazon and other national ecommerce giants.

When a small business with only a few employees closes down forever, it never makes any national headlines.

But the truth is that small businesses are the heart and soul of our economy, and we are losing more of them with each passing day.

Here are some quotes from actual small business owners that took part in the Alignable survey…

  • “COVID has raised its ugly head again. I’m a caterer and I’ve had no work in November and my clients are cancelling for Dec. This is so sad. I have worked so hard to build my business the last 14 years. My business has gone from half a million to not even 200,000. This is devastating for any business.”
  • “COVID closings are killing this country! My business is on hold — no art walks or gallery openings, and I can’t even open my studio. Everything’s online.”
  • “Because therapeutic massage is so ‘up close and personal,’ I have only come back to about 40% of my previous clientele. I am afraid that the governor will shut us down again, which will be the end of my business. I also believe the ‘ruling elite’ does not care about small businesses.”

How would you feel if you spent years putting everything you had into a small business in order to make it successful, only to have the politicians come along and completely destroy it?

And every time a small business has to let workers go, it just makes the unemployment crisis in this country even worse.

On Thursday, we learned that another 853,000 Americans filed new claims for unemployment benefits last week

First-time claims for unemployment insurance totaled 853,000, an increase from the upwardly revised 716,000 total a week before, the Labor Department reported Thursday. Economists surveyed by Dow Jones had been expecting 730,000.

I have been warning that the new lockdowns would make the numbers worse, and that is precisely what is happening.

And one expert that was interviewed by CNBC says that this is just the beginning…

“It looks like the unemployment losses are starting to stack up for the economy. It’s not going to be a good month,” said Chris Rupkey, chief financial economist at MUFG Union Bank. “You’re starting the first week of the month on a bad note, and it’s probably going to be all downhill from here. It feels like the lockdowns are intensifying. It’s closer to reality for those forecasts that look for the economy to go negative in the first quarter.”

It is also important to remember that there are many Americans that have been unemployed for so long that they are no longer eligible to receive benefits.

One of those long-term unemployed workers is 35-year-old Sarah Groome

For six months, she received unemployment benefits from the government – but those payments shrank as the programmes wound down this summer. Since October, she’s received nothing.

“I don’t know what I’m going to do financially,” she says. “I’m applying to jobs and I’ve probably applied to over 100 at this point and I’ve had one interview.”

“It’s scary,” she says. “I don’t know what’s going to happen.”

What do you say to someone in her position?

It’s heartbreaking to hear stories like that, and more people are being laid off with each passing day.

And as our new economic depression gets progressively deeper, an increasing number of Americans are becoming very desperate.

In fact, many have already become so desperate that they are turning to shoplifting

Shoplifting is up markedly since the pandemic began in the spring and at higher levels than in past economic downturns, according to interviews with more than a dozen retailers, security experts and police departments across the country. But what’s distinctive about this trend, experts say, is what’s being taken – more staples like bread, pasta and baby formula.

“We’re seeing an increase in low-impact crimes,” said Jeff Zisner, chief executive of workplace security firm Aegis. “It’s not a whole lot of people going in, grabbing TVs and running out the front door. It’s a very different kind of crime – it’s people stealing consumables and items associated with children and babies.”

Everywhere we look, our society is starting to break down all around us.  Americans have filed new claims for unemployment benefits more than 70 million times this year, the number of homeless in New York City has reached an all-time record high, and civil unrest continues to erupt all over America.

No matter what happens politically, conditions are going to continue to deteriorate as we head into 2021.

Of course the mainstream media is boldly proclaiming that the new vaccines will pull us out of this tailspin and that life in America will soon return to normal.

You can believe the mainstream media if you want, but in the end the “hope” that they are promising will turn out to be a complete mirage.

Michael’s new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.

December 13, 2020 Posted by | Economics, Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity | , | 1 Comment

Latest evasions and cover-ups by Western governments over funding of terrorist groups in Syria are unraveling

People walk past damaged buildings at the Yarmouk refugee camp on the southern outskirts of Damascus © Reuters
By Vanessa Beeley | RT | December 13, 2020

Evidence of Dutch and British funding for extremists who’ve beheaded children & carried out ethnic-cleansing grows by the day. Yet most of the mainstream media – including the BBC – still try to keep this truth silent.

Recently, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte effectively blocked a Parliamentary motion to allow an external independent investigation of Dutch government funding of terrorist groups in Syria.

Rutte initially tried to deny his involvement in the burial of the investigation but tenacious questioning from journalists forced him to admit his personal interference. According to Rutte, such an investigation could result in “tensions with our allies […] the lives of former members of opposition groups could be put at stake.”

Rutte’s protection of illegal armed groups wreaking havoc in Syria is reminiscent of the UK Government’s response to similar Parliamentary questions requesting clarity on the armed groups supported by its Foreign Office (UK FCO). The standard line is, “for security reasons, we do not disclose the names of those moderate opposition groups supported.”

This article will demonstrate that Rutte is very probably preventing tensions with the UK by quashing an investigation, and that the “moderate opposition” promoted by both governments actually consists of savage, extremist gangs who think nothing of conducting ethnic cleansing pogroms in Syria.

Turning ‘non-lethal aid’ into deadly weapons 

In 2018, Dutch officials were accused of providing equipment to terrorist groups in Syria. Equipment that included Toyota and Isuzu trucks that were, probably, later converted into machine-gun carriers by groups such as Jabhat al-Shamiya, considered a “Salafist” group by the Dutch Prosecution Service. This equipment was euphemistically described as non-lethal aid, a convenient caveat for governments ensuring the armed groups are given the means to recast this ‘aid’ into military hardware.

Dutch journalist Eric Van Den Beek has followed this affair from the outset. He wrote recently: “It’s a mystery why the Dutch Public Prosecution Office still has not launched a criminal investigation against current and former political officials who were involved in the support of Jabhat al-Shamiya.”

In October 2020, Dutch media reported that a former leader of a terrorist group operating in Syria had been receiving funding from the Dutch Foreign Ministry for years. The group, Ahrar Al Sham, was designated a terrorist organisation by the Dutch Court in 2019.

It is worth noting that Ahrar Al Sham merged with Nour Al Din Zinki in 2018, to form the “Syrian Liberation Front.” Zinki had been formerly funded as “moderates” by the US, but this aid was withdrawn after the group tortured and beheaded a 12-year-old boy, Abdullah Issa, in Al Ansari square, Aleppo in July 2016.

White Helmets soaked in blood 

Incidentally, the square where this heinous crime took place was only 200 meters from the White Helmet center that featured in the Oscar-nominated promotional movie for the FCO-midwived, terrorist-linked organisation, “Last Men in Aleppo.” The Dutch government only withdrew funding from the White Helmets in 2018, citing lack of assurances that funds would not be funneled to terrorist groups in Syria. Up until this point, the Netherlands had given the White Helmets $14.5 million.

It was Dutch media that broke the story of the suspected involvement of the White Helmets founder, James Le Mesurier, in defrauding Mayday Rescue – the organisation Le Mesurier established to siphon UK and EU funding to his organisation.

The BBC has recently produced a 15-part radio documentary ‘probe’ into the Le Mesurier fraud allegation and the White Helmets. The “Mayday” series, produced by Chloe Hadjimatheou, turned out to be nothing more than an attempt to smear and discredit researchers, academics, scientists and journalists whose work has exposed the White Helmets to be an armed-group-auxiliary, an extension of power for the UK/US-led regime-change coalition, whose failed agenda is the removal of the Syrian government and President Bashar Assad.

Rutte’s denial of a rigorous and transparent investigation into Dutch sponsorship of terrorist groups in Syria is likely to be connected to the BBC-Mayday series and the FCO’s support for sectarian armed groups in Syria as part of an externally managed “political process.” A recent leak of FCO documents has revealed the extent to which the British government and intelligence agencies have been involved in extensive public relations and media operations to clean up the image of bands of war-crime-committing extremist groups.

This context is important to understand why the alleged financial support provided to the leader of Ahrar Al Sham by the Dutch Foreign Ministry, is very likely connected to the UK efforts to create a vast complex of PR and media back-up for these mercenary armed groups in Syria.

The ex-UK student turned fundraiser for Islamism

The former “foreign  affairs minister” of Ahrar Al Sham is a UK-educated, Spanish-Syrian called Labib Al Nahhas. Dutch media has reported that documents show that the country awarded two million euros in subsidies  to the European Institute of Peace (EIP), based in Brussels. Much of this funding went on to the Syrian Association for Citizens’ Dignity (SACD). Al Nahhas is the program director and he, personally, receives 700 euros per day, for an average of more than ten days per month as a senior consultant for EIP. This funding covers 2018-2021.

A recent article by journalist Kit Klarenberg revealed the role that Le Mesurier’s widow, Emma Winberg, played in the PR support for Syrian armed groups. Winberg was co-founder of Incostrat, a FCO-outreach agency funded by the Conflict Stability and Security Fund that also finances Mayday Rescue and the White Helmets. The BBC, curiously, made no mention of Winberg’s involvement in what is effectively a clandestine black-op run by the British government in an effort to destabilise Syria and to effect “regime change.”

Among the groups believed to be provided with PR and media support via Incostrat, are Jaish Al Islam, and, according to French journalist Thierry Meyssan, Ahrar Al Sham. In 2016, The Guardian ran a story on an “ex-UK student clock[ing] up air miles on mission to rebrand Syrian Islamists” (emphasis added). The Guardian admits that Ahrar Al Sham had fought in alliance with Nusra Front (Al Qaeda in Syria) and that their goal was to establish an Islamist theocracy in Syria. The Guardian also reports that one of the original leaders of AS had “personal connections with Osama Bin Laden.”

Al Nahhas had deep connections to the US, EU and UK, where he had established a tech company in a West London suburb. IKPA Communications Ltd was set up in October 2012 and apparently liquidated in 2014. Two other directors were named at Company House, Labib Shalak and Swedish-born UK resident, John Carl Gandeborn. This background builds the picture of someone who would be an ideal candidate for the UK FCO-sponsored agencies to promote as an acceptable frontman of an unacceptably sectarian, brutal armed group.

Al Nahhas resigned as director of his tech company in April 2014, the same year he joined Liwa al-Haq, a faction that merged with Ahrar Al Sham in late 2014. Al Nahhas was appointed Ahrar Al Sham’s “foreign minister” after the assassination of the majority of the armed group’s leaders in September 2014. This event is recorded in the leaked FCO documents, in a submission by Analysis Research and Knowledge (ARK) for the “Rapid Response” contract. ARK was also responsible for the creation of the White Helmets in Turkey and Jordan in 2013, with James Le Mesurier at the helm while an employee of ARK.

Turning a blind eye to outrages 

Immediately after the largely unexplained assassination of Ahrar Al Sham leaders, Al Nahhas was dispatched on a mission to secure US/UK/EU support for the armed group, visiting Western diplomats and publishing “opinion pieces” in the Washington Post and the Telegraph that called on the West to “engage with Ahrar Al Sham”. Former US Ambassador to Syria, Robert Ford, accused by Syrian officials of fomenting the armed uprising in 2011, joined the campaign (in 2015) to whitewash Ahrar Al Sham and to distance them from their alliance with Nusra Front.

The access and UK/US state-aligned-media support given to Al Nahhas and the timing of his moves to join armed groups fighting on behalf of the US Coalition in Syria, must lead to speculation that his role was managed by entities like Incosrat with the backing of the FCO and intelligence agencies. Ahrar Al Sham did not cease their ethnic cleansing atrocities in Syria despite the elevation of the group to “political process” status. In May 2016, just before Nour Al Din Zinki beheaded Abdullah Issa, Ahrar Al Sham and Nusra Front carried out the massacre of Syrian Alawite civilians in Zara, in the Aleppo governorate. The UK and US still refused to bow to pressure from Russia to designate Ahrar Al Sham a terrorist group.

Ahrar Al Sham’s involvement with the BBC dates back to the 2013 BBC Panorama report, “Saving Syria’s Children,” when the armed group escorted the BBC production team during the fabrication of what is suspected to be an elaborate hoax based on the forensic analysis of independent researcher Robert Stuart.

As late as 2017, it was reported that Kenan Al Nahhas, Labib’s brother, was appointed the new “political” leader of Ahrar Al Sham. At this time, the group was participating in the brutal siege and daily targeting of Shia Muslim Syrian civilians in the villages of Kafarya and Foua in Idlib. Ahrar Al Sham was also present, with Nusra Front, in Rashideen, Aleppo, in April 2017, when a terrorist suicide car attack massacred recently evacuated children and families from Kafarya and Foua.

The western campaign to rebrand and decriminalise this armed group continued unaffected by the war crimes they were systematically committing against the Syrian people. An opinion piece by Al Nahhas was published by the Guardian in February 2020. The Guardian has also been instrumental in maintaining the criminalisation of the Syrian government, an effort designed to corroborate the FCO’s “regime change” policy. The Guardian was drafted in to posthumously rebrand James Le Mesurier as a “mainstream saint” and was heavily involved in the White Hemet PR industry, alongside the BBC and Channel 4.

Al Nahhas allegedly distanced himself from Ahrar Al Sham in November 2016, but his brother stepped up to lead the armed group. While the Dutch officials involved in the financial sponsorship of a terrorist group profess ignorance of this, opposition members of Parliament say this suggests a lack of robust screening of recipients of government funding. This, combined with the 2018 revelations of the funding of Jabhat Al Shamiya, paint a damning picture of Dutch government involvement in the promotion and material support for violent, criminal armed groups involved in ten years of bloodshed in Syria.

In a curious turn of fate, Chloe Hadjimatheou, the producer of the BBC “Mayday” series, had been “the driving engine” behind a King’s College London, War Department, paper, entitled “The New Jihadism: A Global Snapshot”. The paper concluded that Ahrar Al Sham should be placed alongside Nusra Front and ISIS as a “Salafist,” in other words, a terrorist organisation operating in Syria.

Hadjimatheou refused to answer when asked if she subscribed to the view that the organisation that collaborated closely with the BBC Panorama team was deemed to be a terrorist group. It seems that the promoters, financiers and supporters of terrorism in Syria are not too keen to own up to their involvement in sustaining the illegal war against the Syrian people for ten years.

Vanessa Beeley is an independent journalist and photographer who has worked extensively in the Middle East – on the ground in Syria, Egypt, Iraq and Palestine, while also covering the conflict in Yemen since 2015. Follow her on Twitter @VanessaBeeley

December 13, 2020 Posted by | Deception, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , , | Leave a comment

The “Expert Consensus” Also Favored Alcohol Prohibition

By Jeffrey A. Tucker | American Institute for Economic Research | December 11, 2020

Most people today regard America’s experiment with alcohol prohibition as a national embarrassment, rightly repealed in 1933. So it will be with the closures and lockdowns of 2020, someday.

In 1920, however, to be for the repeal of the prohibition that was passed took courage. You were arguing against prevailing opinion backed by celebratory scientists and exalted social thinkers. What you were saying flew in the face of “expert consensus.”

There is an obvious analogy to Lockdowns 2020.

My first inkling of this prohibition history came in reading transcripts of the then-famous Radio Priest James Gillis from the 1920s. He was against prohibiting alcohol production and sale on grounds that the social costs far outweighed the supposed benefits. What surprised me was the defensiveness of his comments. He had to assure his listeners that he was personally for temperance, that alcohol was indeed demon rum, that it’s true that this nasty stuff had caused terrible things to happen to the country. Still, he said, outright bans are too costly.

Why was he so cautious in his rhetoric? It turns out that during the 1920s, he was one of the few famous American public figures (H.L. Mencken was also among them) who dared to speak out against what was obviously a disastrous policy. Reading this sent me down a rabbit hole of literature at the time in which it was argued by many leading intellectuals that Prohibition made perfect sense as a necessary step to clean up the social order.

To sum up the “science” behind Prohibition, society had tremendous numbers of pathologies on the loose and they all traced to one dominant variable: liquor. There was poverty, crime, fatherless households, illiteracy, political alienation, social immobility, city squalor, and so on. You can look carefully at the data to find that in all these cases, there is a common element of alcohol. It only stands to reason that eliminating this factor would be the single greatest contribution to eliminating the pathologies. The evidence was incontrovertible. Do this, then that, and you are done.

To be sure, the argument wasn’t always this clean. Simon Patten (1852-1922) was chair of the Wharton School of Business. His late 19th-century argument for alcohol prohibition featured a complicated argument concerning the weather in America. It gets cold then hot then cold and alcohol consumption seems to track these changes, driving people to drink ever more until their lives fall apart.

As summarized by Mark Thornton, who is the leading scholar on the economics of Prohibition and its history, “For Patten, alcohol is a product with no equilibrium in consumption. One is either good and abstains from alcohol, or one becomes a drunkard and self-destructs.”

The most influential pro-Prohibition economist of the next generation was the rock star academic and social progressive Irving Fisher, whose contributions to making economics more about data than theory are legendary. So was his push for eugenics. No surprise if you know this period and such people, but he was also a passionate opponent of all alcohol. It was he who made a decisive difference in convincing Congress and the public that a complete ban was the right way. His oddly titled book Prohibition at Its Worst (1927) lays it all out.

The same year of its publication, Fisher called for a roundtable at the annual meeting of the American Economic Association. His own account is revealing.

I got a list of the economists who are supposed to be opposed to Prohibition, and wrote to them; they all replied either that I was mistaken in thinking that they were opposed to Prohibition or that, if we were going to confine the discussion to the economics of Prohibition, they would not care to respond. When I found that I was to have no speaker representing the opposite point of view, I wrote to all American economists listed in “Minerva” and all American teachers of statistics. I have not received from any one an acceptance.

Clearly his colleagues were either bamboozled by the prevailing “science” or afraid to disagree with the reigning orthodoxy. Even as political establishments were being corrupted, crime and liquor lords were rising up all over the country, and tens of thousands of speakeasies were thriving. Claiming that Prohibition had created $6 billion in wealth for the U.S. – a figure that was frequently cited as authoritative, Fisher wrote the following:

Prohibition is here to stay. If not enforced, its blessings will speedily turn into a curse. There is no time to lose. Although things are much better than before Prohibition, with the possible exception of disrespect for law, they may not stay so. Enforcement will cure disrespect for law and other evils complained of, as well as greatly augment the good. American Prohibition will then go down in history as ushering in a new era in the world, in which accomplishment this nation will take pride forever.

To see how the $6 billion figure was calculated and to observe the rest of the astonishing mathematical gymnastics behind the “science” backing Prohibition, have a look at Thornton’s detailed presentation. It’s a perfect picture of pseudoscience in action.

But it was hardly unusual for the time. The Journal of the American Medical Association said of alcohol prohibition in 1920: “Most of us are convinced that it is one of the most beneficent acts ever passed by a legislature.” 

Reading through all this literature, I’m reminded of the CDC scientific conclusion that closing restaurants during a pandemic will save lives – a conclusion based on a study so weak that anyone with a passing familiarity with statistics and causality can immediately observe its failings (the same study, if it demonstrates that, would also demonstrate that masks make no difference in virus spread). Another obvious case was the brutal and unscientific closures of schools.

Also true is that the opponents of Prohibition were routinely and publicly denounced as secret drunks, shilling for bootleggers, or just not following the science. They were the outliers and stayed that way for a decade. What finally broke Prohibition was not the replacement of one scientific orthodoxy for another but the noncompliance on the part of most of the population. When enforcement became unviable, and FDR saw opposition to Prohibition as politically advantageous, the law finally changed.

When we look back on American history, Prohibition stands out as one of the craziest social and economic experiments of modern times. The very idea that the government, on its own authority and power, was going to purge from a Western society the production and distribution of alcohol, strikes us today as a millennarian pipedream, one that turned into disaster for the whole country.

We could say the same about lockdowns in 2020. Indeed, measuring the absurdities on a scale of extremism, the idea of lockdowns, with forceful human separation, mandatory masking, and the practical abolition of all large gatherings, fun, art, and travel, seems even more sadistically preposterous than alcohol prohibition.

The madness of crowds, often backed by the “best science,” never goes away. It just finds new forms of legal expression in new times. Only once the crowds come to their senses do the real scientists make a comeback and prevail, while the fake science that backed despotism pretends like it never happened.

December 13, 2020 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular | , | Leave a comment