Aletho News


FDA Chief Claims “Misinformation” is Leading Cause of Death in the United States

By Paul Joseph Watson | Summit News | May 9, 2022

During an appearance on CNN, FDA chief Dr. Robert Califf asserted that the leading cause of death in the United States is online “misinformation.”

Yes, really.

Califf spoke about his remarks during an interview with CNN’s Pamela Brown, which were originally made at a health conference in Texas last month when he said online misinformation was “now our leading cause of death.”

After admitting that there was “no way to quantify this,” before mentioning heart disease and cancer (actual killers), Califf went on to bolster the claim anyway.

Claiming that there has been “an erosion of life expectancy,” Califf went on to say that Americans were living an average of 5 years shorter than people in other high income countries.

Califf said that anti-virals and vaccinations meant “almost no one in this country should be dying from COVID,” before going on to explain that there was also a “reduction in life expectancy from common diseases like heart disease.”

“But somehow … the reliable, truthful messages are not getting across,” he said, adding, “And it’s being washed down by a lot of misinformation, which is leading people to make bad choices that are unfortunate for their health.”

The FDA chief did not explain how ‘online misinformation’ was causing more deaths from heart disease, but went ahead and made the claim anyway without being challenged by the host.

As we have exhaustively highlighted, “online misinformation” is indistinguishable from information the regime doesn’t like.

As we previously noted, the woman picked to head up the Department of Homeland Security’s ‘Ministry of Truth’ said free speech makes her “shudder” while also promoting the lie that the Hunter Biden laptop story was Russian disinformation.

Nina Jankowicz also ludicrously cited Christopher Steele as an expert on disinformation. Steele was the author of the infamous Clinton campaign-funded Trump ‘peegate’ dossier’ that turned out to be an actual product of disinformation.

The contrived moral panic over “misinformation” has become more pronounced following Elon Musk’s purchase of Twitter, with CNN guests recently complaining about how it might impact their monopoly on controlling “the channels of communications.”

May 9, 2022 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Deception, Full Spectrum Dominance, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , | 1 Comment

The EU response to Israel’s latest forced displacement of Palestinians is — again — really weak

By Ramona Wadi | MEMO | May 9, 2022

The European Union is, as usual, taking the wrong approach when it comes to dealing with Israel’s violations of international law. With over 1,200 Palestinians facing forced eviction from Masafer Yatta, also known as “Firing Zone 918”, after the Israeli Supreme Court ruled in favour of demolishing eight villages, the EU merely summarised what Israel and the international community already know: Israel has obligations under international law.

“Under international law, individual or mass forcible transfers and deportation of protected persons from the occupied territories are prohibited, regardless of their motive,” the EU’s delegation to the Palestinians tweeted. “As the occupying power, Israel has the obligation to protect the Palestinian population and not displace it.” As the occupying power, Israel knows this, but ignores it nonetheless.

Indeed, Israel has no need for a reminder of its obligations; it needs, and we need, the international community to hold it to account for those obligations. The international community, though, is invested heavily in Israel, both politically and economically.

Once again, Israel has used its fake security narrative to usurp the land on which Masafer Yatta is built. The Israel Defence Forces (IDF) claim that the land is needed for military training purposes. According to the Jerusalem Post, Palestinians living in the villages slated for demolition can still reach an agreement with the IDF to access some of the land for agricultural purposes. There are, however, many examples where Palestinians have been deprived of their agricultural land permanently, but have had to face Israeli settler and military violence forcing them to stay away from their land even when such “access” has been agreed in advance.

Documents dating back to 1981 reveal that Ariel Sharon offered Masafer Yatta to the IDF in order to forcibly displace Palestinians so that Israel can retain the territory for its expansion. “We definitely have an interest in enlarging our territory there… given the spread of the rural Arabs on the ‘back of the mountain’ towards the desert.”

Masafer Yatta’s Mayor, Nidal Abu Younis, said that, “This [ruling] proves that this court is part of the occupation.” It is a pity that such statements are made as if he or anyone else has just realised the nature of Israel’s Supreme Court. There was no need for this or any other ruling to prove the court’s loyalty to the settler-colonial state. No state or judicial institution in Israel will work against the colonial process. And neither will the EU, which has financed dwellings for the communities living in Masafer Yatta. In January this year, Israel destroyed eight structures in the area, leaving 19 people, along them 11 children, forcibly displaced.

The humanitarian agenda employed by the EU only serves the bloc’s interests. EU investment in Palestine is minimal and corrupted, as is its statement reminding Israel of its obligations under international law. Israel has violated international law to guarantee its existence and it is given diplomatic support for doing so, which takes precedence over any humanitarian aid allocated to Palestinians by the same political actors supporting Israel. When will the EU issue a statement that expresses its contempt for the forced transfer of Palestinians, for example, and link it to this historical disregard which the international community has for ongoing forced displacement that has happened ever since and including the Nakba?

May 9, 2022 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Progressive Hypocrite, Timeless or most popular | , , , | Leave a comment

The Palestinian Nakba didn’t end in 1948; it is ongoing

By Dr Amira Abo el-Fetouh | MEMO | May 9, 2022

Israel has just celebrated what it calls Independence Day, which is based on the myth of national liberation from British colonialism and the establishment of an independent state dreamt about by successive generations of Jews. On this day every year, Israel flexes its military muscles and holds celebrations across the country.

The Israelis celebrate their theft and occupation of Palestine, a land with deep Arab roots. Israel’s “independence” replaced British colonialism with an even more horrific settler-colonialism. Not for nothing do the Palestinians call the establishment of the colonial state of Israel the Nakba — the Catastrophe — because what happened in 1948 was not liberation from colonialism or independence, but the greatest armed robbery of the twentieth century. An entire country was seized through the Zionists’ ethnic cleansing of the indigenous Palestinian population. What’s more, the Nakba didn’t begin and end in 1948; it is ongoing.

As such, Israeli “independence” celebrations do not commemorate the past; they encourage what is still happening in Jerusalem, the West Bank, the Negev, the Galilee and the rest of occupied Palestine. The Palestinians in Israel remember the Nakba and the ethnic cleansing under the slogan “Your Independence Day is our Nakba Day” to emphasise the fact that their land has been stolen and occupied by force, deception and the falsification of history. That is why it was shameful for the UAE to send Israel a congratulatory telegram on this day.

Arguably even more shameful is the fact that the Nakba was blessed by the international community when recognition of Israel was granted with a seat in the UN General Assembly, even though it has never fulfilled the condition of its membership, the return of Palestinian refugees. The occupation state has been protected ever since by the “permanent members” of the UN Security Council, which was established specifically to achieve the goals of the nuclear powers post-Second World War. The colonial countries rushed to recognise the settler-colonial entity planted on Arab land; first up was the Soviet Union, followed by the US (not the other way round, as is often believed). East and West worked together to stab the Arab people in the back, although if it wasn’t for the plotting of Arab states, the West wouldn’t have been able to carry out its conspiracy in Arab Palestine.

The planning for the Zionist entity began in the late nineteenth century. Serious lobbying of colonial states led to the issue of the disastrous 1917 Balfour Declaration in which the British government promised its support for the “establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people”. It was a promise made by those who did not own the land to those who had no legitimate claim to it. The promise was fulfilled on 14 May 1948, since when Palestinians have lived in exile and under occupation, with all of the suffering that that implies. The Palestinians’ struggle against the occupation of their land has carried on for 74 years, despite the plotting of the Arab rulers against them. The world has not served them justice or restored their usurped rights or land; the international community, headed by the US, supports Israel, and the Arab countries loyal to the US act as guardians for Israel’s as yet undeclared borders. It is an expansionist colonial project.

All Arab rulers, without exception, have traded with the Palestinian issue in front of their people who love Palestine, from the time of Gamal Abdel Nasser until today, in order to consolidate their own grip on power. What has been going on behind the scenes is, though, completely different, and only came to light after years of deception in the peace treaties signed with the Israeli enemy. The PLO signed the Oslo Accords with Israel on 13 September, 1993, in which the “liberation” organisation recognised Israel and removed from its national charter the clause about the armed struggle to liberate Palestine from the sea to the river in return for imaginary “authority” that was created to do nothing more than provide security for the occupation state and be the forerunner of an independent state that was never really intended to come into being.

The theft of Palestinian land has been ongoing throughout the years of the so-called “peace process”, with ever more and ever larger illegal Israeli settlements and infrastructure making it impossible for there to be enough contiguous territory for such a state to exist. There remains less than 20 per cent of historic Palestine left for the Palestinians, and all of it is dominated by Israel’s military occupation.

The ill-fated Oslo Accords have led to more killing and arrests — by Israeli and Palestinian Authority security forces — of Palestinians struggling for their freedom. The Aqsa Intifada in September 2000 restored the spirit of resistance to the Palestinian people under the late leader Yasser Arafat. He came back from the US frustrated after meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak at Camp David, under the auspices of US President Bill Clinton; he was convinced by that stage that there was no point in peace agreements with Israel. The establishment of a Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital and the return of Palestinian refugees to their land was an illusion.

Arafat himself led the intifada. The uprising included the Islamic Resistance Movement, Hamas, which had not abandoned the Palestinian constants and the restoration of all of Palestine, from the sea to the river. There was no way for this to be achieved except through legitimate resistance.

Thus began a new phase of the Palestinian struggle which has continued since Arafat was besieged in his Ramallah compound and then killed in 2004 as a “punishment” for the intifada. Israel’s unilateral 2005 withdrawal from the Gaza Strip under the weight of Hamas resistance, which was steadfast despite the assassination of its founder and spiritual guide, the quadriplegic Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, its leader Dr Abdel Aziz Rantisi and others. Four major military offensives have since been launched against the Palestinians in Gaza accompanied by a comprehensive land, sea and air blockade after Hamas won the 2006 parliamentary election. Through all of this, legitimate resistance has been neither weakened nor undermined; the resolve of the Palestinian people to make huge sacrifices to liberate their land remains strong. They do so with dignity and honour.

The Israeli enemy has failed to bring the Palestinian people to their knees in Gaza, just as it has failed to defeat Hamas. That is why the head of the “sacred” security coordination authority in Ramallah, Mahmoud Abbas, is tasked with trying to discredit the Islamic movement and bring it down. He joins in the accusations of “terrorism” used to describe legitimate resistance to Israel’s military occupation. He also cut the salaries of PA employees in the Gaza Strip to turn the people against Hamas, but his plan failed.

There is no doubt that there is optimism within the great Palestinian nation, which is inspirational. The people have been able to turn the tables on the occupation state on many occasions, with their innovation and creativity in the struggle. The Israelis live in fear, while the Palestinians believe that they will either win or die in the process. Such a people are unbeatable.

The current generation includes the great-grandchildren of the Palestinians who were expelled from their land in the first wave of ethnic cleansing during the Nakba. Most have not been to their grandparents’ homes and land in what is now the usurper state of Israel, but they still live in Palestine in their hearts and minds. They are living proof that the Zionist claim that, “The old will die and the young will forget” is a lie. The old did die, but only after handing over the keys to the young, passing on the mission so that they will never forget. The Palestinian people will not be defeated in their struggle to live with honour, freedom and dignity.

May 9, 2022 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular | , , , | 2 Comments

Assad renews Syria’s bonds with Iran


The unannounced arrival of the Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to Tehran on Sunday makes yet another wrinkle to the geopolitics of West Asia. In a short trip of a few hours, Assad had meetings with Iran’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and President Ebrahim Raeisi and returned to Damascus. 

This is only the second trip by Assad to Iran in the past 11 years since the conflict erupted in Syria. The last occasion was in 2019, when he came accompanied by the charismatic commander of the IRGC’s elite Quds Force late Qassem Soleimani to mark Syria’s “victory” in the conflict. Much water has flowed down down the Euphrates and the Tigris since then. 

There is some speculation that Russia may redeploy its forces in Syria. The Israeli intelligence website DebkaFile reported cryptically on Friday that “Russian units deployed to Syria are assembling at the air bases of  Hmeimim, Qamishli, Deir e-Zor and T4, ready for some to transfer to the Ukraine warfront. DEBKAfile’s military sources report that the Russians are handing over key bases to Iran’s Revolutionary Guards and Hizballah.” 

Prima facie, this is kite-flying, so to speak. There is no independent word from Moscow. Iran will be certainly in the loop on any big Russian troop withdrawal from Syria. The Turkish air space is closed to Russian [military] planes since April and on February 28 Ankara had restricted the passage of Russian warships through the Bosporus and Dardanelles Straits (unless they are returning to their bases in the Black Sea.) 

Analysts have interpreted the Turkish decisions as “anti-Russian” but they come under the ambit of Montreux Convention (1936) and on closer look, may even work to Moscow’s advantage since the door is also closed to any NATO naval build-up in the Black Sea. Russian papers have pointed out that Moscow has been using the air corridor via Iran and Iraq to supply its troops in Syria. 

Indeed, Turkey is doing a delicate trapeze act vis-a-vis Russia and Ukraine, being a Black Sea power with overlapping security concerns, while also a NATO power. Turkey has deftly created space to manoeuvre since NATO is technically not at war with Russia, and since Turkey is not a EU member country, it isn’t obliged to sanction Russia, either. 

Turkish leadership has actively nurtured contacts with the Kremlin, and the economic partnership continues, including over the construction of the massive $20 billion Akkuyu Nuclear Power Plant (comprising four 1,200 MW VVER units), which is expected to meet ten percent of Turkey’s electricity demand when it is completed in 2025. 

Again, Russian carrier Aeroflot has just resumed flights to Turkey in anticipation of the tourist season. Believe it or not, Turkey has found an ingenuous formula to allow Russian tourists to travel to Turkey bypassing the suspension of Visa and Mastercard by making it possible to access their funds through Russia’s homegrown payments system called Mir! Some 4.7 million Russian tourists visited Turkey last year, accounting for 19% of the total tourist arrivals, fetching an annual income exceeding $10 billion. 

When it comes to Russian-Iranian relations too, the picture is broadly similar to India’s — neither supporting Russia nor opposing it while refusing to censure Russian intervention and counselling ceasefire and dialogue as the only solution. 

According to Iranian media reports, Russia’s Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak is due to visit Iran shortly in connection with the session of the Iran-Russia Joint Economic Committee. The discussions are expected to focus on “strengthening financial cooperation and resolving transit problems” between the two countries as well as cooperating in the fields of oil and gas and promoting trade and tourism. Tehran knows that such camaraderie with Moscow is contrary to the spirit of Western sanctions.   

Moscow has every intention to remain actively involved in Syria. Special Russian Presidential Representative for the Middle East and Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov disclosed to Tass last week that Russia is working on scheduling the next international meeting on Syria in the Astana format for the end of May in Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan. Does that look like Russia washing its hands off Syria? To quote Bogdanov, “We already discussed this with partners Iran and Turkey as the guarantors of the Astana process plus with the Syrian government and opposition delegations.” 

The official Syrian news agency Sana described Assad’s trip to Tehran as a “working visit.” It quoted Assad as stressing to Khamenei about “the importance of continuing cooperation in order not to allow America to rebuild the international terrorist system that it used to harm the countries of the world,” adding that the US “is weaker than ever.”

There are four main takeaways from Assad’s talks with the Iranian leadership. First, Assad made it clear in no uncertain terms that no matter Syria’s normalisation with the UAE (or other Arab countries involved in the conflict), he continues to attribute the highest importance to Syria’s alliance with Iran. Assad underscored that Syria is ready for broader coordination with Iran in security, political and economic fields.

Second, Damascus needs Tehran’s help for finally freeing Syria from foreign occupation. Raisi told Assad, “The whole of the Syrian land must be liberated from foreign occupiers. This occupation should not be subject to the passage of time, and the occupying forces and their mercenaries should be expelled.” Sana cited Khamenei as stressing that Iran will “continue to support Syria to complete its victory over terrorism and liberate the rest of the country’s lands.” 

Third, the two countries have a consensus on the effectiveness and vibrancy of the resistance front. Assad acknowledged that the weakening of the US’ influence in West Asia and the end of Israel’s military supremacy regionally is a direct outcome of the strategic relations between Iran and Syria, “which must continue with strength.” 

Interestingly, Khamenei recalled that Soleimani had “a special liking towards Syria and literally sacrificed his life” for that country and viewed the issue of Syria as a “sacred duty and obligation”. Khamenei reminded Assad poignantly, “This bond is vital for both countries and we should not let it weaken. On the contrary, we should strengthen it as much as possible.” Raisi called Assad “one of the figures of the Resistance Front” like his father Hafez al-Assad.

Fourth, Assad sought and obtained assurances from the highest level of Iranian leadership that Iran will help Syria overcome its difficulties. This is particularly crucial at a juncture when regional politics is in flux and Russia is preoccupied in Ukraine. 

A resuscitation of the US-led regime change project in Syria is not to be expected and Washington no longer wields commanding influence over its Persian Gulf allies or Turkey to get them to act as its surrogates. But Assad’s challenge is that Syria is getting relegated to the back burner as new hotspots and topical issues draw the region’s attention — such as JCPOA, Yemen, Iran-Saudi normalisation, OPEC+, etc. 

Although the conflict has ended, Syria still remains under foreign occupation and its economy is in ruins. A frozen conflict may legitimise the status quo. Meanwhile, Israel is waiting in the wings. Assad’s visit to Tehran signals that Iran remains the mainstay of Syria’s future strategy to avoid such a dismal fate. Iran’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian affirmed on Monday that Assad’s visit was held in an atmosphere of “fraternity and friendship,” and it opens a new chapter in the strategic ties.

May 9, 2022 Posted by | Solidarity and Activism | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Nasrallah: Those pushing for disarmament of Hezbollah want to sell Lebanon to US

Press TV – May 9, 2022

The secretary general of the Lebanese Hezbollah resistance movement, Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah, speaks in a televised speech broadcast live from the Lebanese capital city of Beirut on May 9, 2022.

The secretary-general of the Lebanese Hezbollah resistance movement has denounced calls by some political parties for the disarmament of the movement in the run-up to next week’s parliamentary elections, saying the demand comes amid those parties’ utter disregard for the worsening economic crisis in the country.

“I want the entire Lebanese nation to know that those who are calling for the disarmament of the resistance are unaware of what the southerners went through since 1948,” Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah said in a televised speech broadcast live from the Lebanese capital city of Beirut on Monday evening.

“Some political forces have unfortunately turned Hezbollah’s disarmament into the main topic of their electoral campaigns,” Nasrallah said, stressing that the parties that are “pushing for the handover of Hezbollah’s weapons want to sell Lebanon to US and make it susceptible in face of Israel.”

“Those who are calling for Hezbollah’s disarmament disregard its achievements as to liberation of the occupied Lebanese territories and freedom of prisoners” from Israeli detention centers, Nasrallah said.

“Does Israel dare bomb any area in Lebanon today?” Nasrallah asked, attributing the deterrence to the presence of Hezbollah forces.

“We respect the army. It has a national creed as well as competent officers and soldiers. The Lebanese army, however, cannot shoulder the responsibility on its own at the moment, and cannot confront the Israeli enemy alone,” the Hezbollah leader said.

Nasrallah went on to emphasize that his movement is ready to discuss a national defense strategy, because it has “reason and evidence.”

He added that those making demands for Hezbollah’s disarmament have not yet offered “an alternative” in the face of Israeli acts of aggression.

“Who will protect southern Lebanon if the resistance abandons its duties? Hezbollah is the strong force protecting Lebanon today,” Nasrallah said.

He went on to lament that some Lebanese politicians “do not view Israel as an enemy” and do not believe that “the regime has ambitious plans for Lebanon’s territorial waters and gas reserves.”

Nasrallah highlighted that the May 15 parliamentary elections will be a “political war” and that Hezbollah “will practice political resistance in the polls.”

“Those who want to defend Lebanon, extract its oil resources and protect its waters must vote for the resistance and its allies,” he pointed out.

“Some people are saying that they won’t vote for the resistance due to the economic crisis. We tell that the resistance will guarantee extraction of natural gas and crude oil from Lebanon’s territorial waters in order to resolve the crisis,” Nasrallah added.

“Hundreds of billions of dollars are present in our waters,” Nasrallah said of Lebanon’s potential oil and gas reserves.

The Ansarullah chief went on to call on the Lebanese government to start investment in the country’s offshore oil reserves.

Nasrallah said the United States wants Lebanon to recognize Israel, and naturalize the Palestinian and Syrian refugees.

He finally made a reference to the Israeli military’s drills near the border with Lebanon, emphasizing that Hezbollah resistance fighters will not hesitate to respond to any aggression against their homeland.

“We are not afraid of your drills and your deployment. We are the ones who coined the expression ‘Israel is weaker than a spider web’ more than 20 years ago,” Nasrallah concluded.

May 9, 2022 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism | , , , | 1 Comment

Germany warns of global famine

Samizdat | May 9, 2022

The world is about to face an acute food crisis due to skyrocketing food prices, German Economic Cooperation and Development Minister Svenja Schulze told the Bild newspaper on Saturday, warning about a looming famine not seen since World War II. The minister has named the Covid-19 pandemic and Russia’s ongoing military operation in Ukraine as its causes.

“The situation is highly dramatic,” the minister told the German tabloid in a late Saturday interview, adding that, according to the UN World Food Program, “more than 300 million people” are already suffering from acute hunger and the UN has to “constantly revise” this data upwards.

Food prices around the world have grown by a third and have reached “record levels,” Schulze has warned, adding that the “bitter message is that we are facing the worst famine since World War II,” which could see “millions” die.

In its May 6 statement, the World Food Program has warned that “44 million people around the world are marching towards starvation” because Ukrainian grain cannot reach them, and called for the Black Sea ports to be opened so that this grain could be delivered to the needy.

Minister Schulze was quick to blame Moscow for the development by accusing Russian President Vladimir Putin of “waging a war through hunger.” She claimed that Russia had “stolen grain from Ukraine” and is now taking advantage of nations depending on Russian and Ukrainian agricultural products by supposedly offering food only to those, who are “unequivocally pro-Russian.”

The minister has also claimed that the fact that 40 nations that are “home to half of the world’s population” did not condemn Russia’s actions in Ukraine was supposedly a result of their “vulnerability to food blackmail.” She didn’t offer any specific evidence to support this statement, though.

At the same time, she did admit that some nations’ focus on green energy has contributed to the food shortage as well. Germany in particular should stop using food as fuel, she has suggested. Up to 4% of the so-called biofuel in Germany is made from food and animal feed, she said, adding that “it needs to be reduced to zero, and not just in Germany but potentially internationally.”

Germany “pours 2.7 billion liters of fuel [made] from vegetable oils into car tanks every year,” she pointed out, adding that this alone amounts to “almost a half of Ukraine’s sunflower oil production.”

The ongoing conflict in Ukraine has prompted fears of global grain shortages as wheat prices soared to multiple-year highs in March. Both Russia and Ukraine are major wheat suppliers, accounting for some 30% of global exports.

In mid-April, however, German Agriculture Minister Cem Ozdemir insisted that supplying Kiev with “more effective” weaponry was precisely what would have helped the world to avoid the supposedly looming “global famine.” Ozdemir, a member of the strongly pro-US/NATO Alliance 90/The Greens party, also accused Moscow of “starvation strategy” at that time.

His position appears to be quite different from at least two groups of German public figures, politicians and celebrities, who have called on Chancellor Olaf Scholz to stop arms supplies to Ukraine and to focus on a speedy diplomatic solution instead.

Continued arms deliveries would only prolong the suffering of Ukrainians as well as risk potentially devastating consequences, ranging from a possible global war to a “catastrophic” impact on global health and climate change, the co-authors of two open letters have warned. Berlin has not reacted to any of the letters so far.

May 9, 2022 Posted by | Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity, Progressive Hypocrite | | 4 Comments

Sri Lanka’s Prime Minister Resigns Amid Anti-Government Protests

Samizdat – 09.05.2022

Sri Lanka has been rocked by mass protests for weeks, with people outraged over the government’s policies amid the country’s worst economic crisis in decades.

Sri Lanka’s Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa has resigned, his spokesman Rohan Weliwita said.

The 76-year-old prime minister sent his letter of resignation to his younger brother, President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, clearing the way for a “new unity government”, the spokesman said, quoted by AFP.

Earlier, news about the prime minister’s resignation was broken by local media.

On Monday, the government imposed a nationwide curfew and deployed the army in the capital Colombo amid violent clashes between anti-government protesters and government supporters outside President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s office. Dozens of people were injured in the clashes. Police used tear gas and water cannons to disperse the protesters.

Sri Lankans have been facing the worst economic crisis since gaining independence from British rule in 1948. People have been suffering amid acute shortages of food, fuel, and medicines, as well as months of power outages. The crisis broke out after Sri Lanka lost the vital income it had traditionally received from tourism and remittances. This happened due to the coronavirus pandemic and tough COVID-related restrictions that affected the entire region. As a result of this, Sri Lanka was no longer able to pay off its $51 billion foreign debt and banned the import of some goods.

May 9, 2022 Posted by | Economics, Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity | | 1 Comment

Insights On Progressive Thinking From The Climate Action Council Public Hearing

By Francis Menton | Manhattan Contrarian | May 6, 2022

My previous post on Tuesday contained some highlights from the May 3 public hearing of New York’s Climate Action Council. The CAC is the body that is charged with devising a “Scoping Plan” to inform all us New Yorkers how we will achieve “zero carbon” electricity by 2030 and a “zero carbon” economy by 2050. I attended the hearing for about two and a half hours, during which about 60 people spoke.

Reflecting on the hearing a few days later, I think there are a few more highlights that would interest the readers, and will give some more insights into the nature of progressive thinking.

As stated in my prior post, of the 60 or so speakers, all but myself and four others were vigorous supporters of the critical necessity of achieving the stated zero carbon goals by the given dates as an urgent matter of saving our planet and our children. This was so despite what appeared to me to be manifestly huge issues of physical feasibility and cost that are almost certain to cause these grand “net zero” energy schemes to fail. The CAC’s draft “Scoping Plan,” as it currently exists for public comment, does not consider these feasibility or cost issues in any remotely adequate fashion, if at all. That fact did not appear to bother the overwhelming majority of the speakers.

So what are the things that do drive the thinking of these other 55 or so speakers, who apparently represent the large majority of New York City’s citizenry? The previous post mentioned fear as a common theme — fear that use of fossil fuels by us New Yorkers will bring on storms, floods and other disasters to threaten our lives and livelihoods. But what I failed to mention was another emotion that was even more prevalent in the comments — anger.

Anger at what, you might ask? Good question. I admit that this doesn’t make any sense, but here it is. The anger is directed at the fossil fuel producers and distributors who the commenters, with near unanimity, seemed to believe were hell-bent on destroying the planet. A substantial majority of the 60 or so comments that I listened to expressed this anger in one form or another, and it was an implicit undercurrent in most of the rest.

But, you might say, all of these people are in fact the users of the fossil fuels. Essentially all of them use electricity, which in New York currently comes about 60% from fossil fuels. The large majority of them drive cars, of which some 99% in New York use gasoline. Most of them heat their homes with natural gas, and cook with natural gas. Aren’t they themselves the ones who are responsible for the problem, if there is a problem? They use fossil-fuel-burning cars and furnaces and stoves because those vehicles and appliances are cheaper and/or work better than the alternatives. And yet, somehow these people have convinced themselves that they have no responsibility at all, and the use of gasoline and natural gas by them and others is a fault of evil producers and utilities.

On this theme, two commenters in particular stand out in my mind. First was a youngish (probably in her 30s) woman from Brooklyn who described herself as having a toddler in the apartment. After relating her fears for the toddler’s future in a world of changing climate, she got to the crux of her personal testimony, which was much more about anger than fear. The gas company was putting a dangerous substance into her stove, which when burned to cook gave off toxic substances and fumes that were putting the toddler’s health at risk. Her intense rage was palpable. She urged the CAC in the strongest terms to impose legal prohibitions that would prevent this kind of conduct going forward.

Put aside for the moment that this woman apparently had no idea that there is nothing toxic about the combustion products of natural gas, which are CO2 and water. But even more bizarre was that she apparently hadn’t figured out that if she is concerned about this subject, however irrationally, she can just go out and buy an electric stove tomorrow. And why hadn’t she done that? She didn’t say. The only reasons I can think of are that natural gas stoves work better than electric ones and are cheaper. Those are perfectly good reasons. But I wouldn’t recommend that you try to argue with this woman about why she has a gas stove. She is completely convinced that it has been foisted upon her by the evil gas companies who are intent on destroying the health of her toddler, let alone the planet. I doubt that any amount of logic or reason could talk her out of that belief.

And then there was the case of an equally irrational 60-something man, who said he was from Cedarhurst, Long Island. For those unfamiliar, Cedarhurst is a very wealthy suburb of large homes just outside the New York City limits. You may have seen Cedarhurst out the window of an airplane approaching JFK airport on a flight back from Europe. The guy in question styled his testimony as a confessional. He candidly admitted to his extreme climate guilt. But he claimed that he was unable to do anything about his large carbon footprint right now because the state had failed to compel the suppliers to provide him with zero emissions alternatives. He didn’t give us any details of what fuel he currently uses to heat his home, or to cook, but chose to focus on his driving. He stated that he wanted to buy an electric car, and was ready to do it, but was prevented from doing it. How was he prevented? Because there were no electric vehicle charging stations in his town! Needless to say, he was angry about that, and demanded that the state step up to order somebody to provide the charging stations, and provide funding to be sure that the charging stations got built.

Huh? Why didn’t this guy just get his own charging station at his own house? He didn’t mention that, so we are left to speculate. Again, the only thing I can think of is that he doesn’t want to spend his own money on this. Better to gin up some anger and demand that somebody else pay for it.

The thinking is that not only perfect fairness and justice, but also perfect climate, are easily within our reach if only our leaders summon the political will to order the evil people and companies to do the right thing, and perhaps provide some funding from the infinite free pile of government money. I guess, if you believe that, you are right to be angry that the leaders haven’t yet issued the necessary orders to get the job done. What’s wrong with them?

May 9, 2022 Posted by | Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity, Progressive Hypocrite, Science and Pseudo-Science | | Leave a comment

It’s Time We Get Answers About the FBI’s Involvement In the OKC Bombing

By John Kline | The Libertarian Institute | April 27, 2022

This past week marked the 27th anniversary of the Oklahoma City bombing. As the worst terrorist act committed on U.S. soil at the time, we all know the reported facts of the horrific event well: a 27-year-old Desert Storm-vet, Timothy McVeigh, acting with minimal help from Terry Nichols and Michael Fortier, detonated a 7,000-pound fertilizer bomb from a parked Ryder truck outside the federal Alfred P. Murrah building, killing 168 people, 19 of them children.

Two years later, in 1997, McVeigh was convicted of “Using a weapon of mass destruction resulting in death,” among other federal charges. For a time, he was held on the same cell block as the Unabomber and WTC-bomber Ramzi Yousef (who tried to convert him to Islam), before being put to death by lethal injection in 2001.

There is much we still don’t know about the case, however. Thanks to years of heroic work by people like Salt Lake City-based attorney Jesse Trentadue, writer and researcher J.M. Berger, and independent investigative reporter Wendy S. Painting, the American public is slowly learning more and more key (and disturbing) facts about the case. Facts involving the FBI’s possible incitement of McVeigh and the subsequent cover-up of these facts by Newsweek magazine.

FBI incitement is more topical than ever, of course. Reports of the FBI being involved in Michigan governor Gretchen Whitmer’s kidnapping plot and of FBI agents and assets being involved in the January 6th events has collapsed whatever level of trust the public had with federal law enforcement, not to mention the mainstream media whose related coverage rarely digs deeper than the government’s official line.

What other crimes have been committed or conspiracies planned, the public wonders, where the initial momentum was actually created the FBI? How much have FBI infiltrators pushed constitutionally protected “heated talk” into the unlawful planning and execution of deadly crimes? To what extent has the FBI been, as the saying goes, arsonists posing as firefighters? These are especially important questions when it comes to the OKC bombing.

Operation PATCON

As most know, the FBI and other law enforcement agencies have conducted surveillance and infiltration operations against right-wing groups for decades. Chief among them being the “Patriotic Conspiracy” or “PATCON” operation. Despite its official ending in late 1993 (although some say it was carried forward in some form), PATCON only became public in 2007 thanks to a public records request.

Partly citing internal FBI documents, Painting in her explosive 2016 book about PATCON and McVeigh, describes how the former’s secret operatives and paid informers “were given license to engage in provocateur activities and instructed to make known their willingness to commit violence and advocate for the violent overthrow of the U.S. government.”1 She quotes one informer who went public about the operation, John Matthews, saying he realized that although initially told “the objective was to infiltrate and monitor,” he would later come to understand that its real objective was to “to infiltrate and incite.”2 This, says Matthews, included providing “the ideas, detailed instructions, and even live C4 explosives and automatic weapons to targeted individuals as a way of entrapping them into terrorist plots, so the FBI could capitalize on foiled and actualized plots.”3 According to Trentadue, through PATCON, the FBI was actually trying to sow a full-on rebellion.

While the FBI has indeed infiltrated hard-left and Islamic groups in the past, the extent and complete failure of the FBI’s overreach when it comes to right-wing groups (which diversely included pro-gun, ultra-libertarian, survivalist, and white racist or advocacy groups) makes this area especially alarming. For instance, there was just one minor conviction over stolen military night-vision goggles that was ever made through PATCON, and it relied on army, not FBI, intelligence. As Oklahoma City journalist J.D. Cash said about PATCON and certain precursor programs of the 1980s, “there isn’t a neo-Nazi or racist group in the country that isn’t operationally controlled by the FBI.” This seems to concur with what a former young Aryan Nation-member told Painting for her book4:

It was well known that at any Aryan Nation event, in a crowd of 300 people, there’d be at least 30 undercover federal agents in attendance to monitor us, and another third of the crowd were informants… It was rampant, just like cops at a Grateful Dead show trying to sell people LSD.

One of those assets was Vietnam War veteran John Matthews. Up until 1986, the government had been supporting U.S. civilian groups conducting operations in Nicaragua for anti-communist contra forces; a cause which Matthews chose to serve. When such efforts turned into a political scandal, however, the government broke-off ties with these groups and refused to help its members. This included people like Matthews’ fellow soldier Tom Posey who would later be indicted on weapons-smuggling charges.5 While he beat the rap, Posey felt cheated and shifted his efforts to anti-U.S. government organizing. When he revealed plans to break into a federal armory, however, Matthews contacted the FBI, establishing a relationship with law enforcement that led him to infiltrate over 20 militia, libertarian, gun-rights, and racist groups over a 20-year period.

Matthews, who has long been suffering from an Agent-Orange-related cancer, is key to what understanding we have about PATCON’s connection to the OKC bombing. In the early nineties, Matthews was assigned to attend a PATCON-infiltrated, militia-training camp in Texas. While there, he met Timothy McVeigh. After the bombing and when McVeigh was arrested, Matthews immediately recognized him and called his FBI handler, Don Jarrett, to tell him this was the same man he saw at the Texas training camp. Jarrett assured Matthews they knew this already and told him to “forget about it.”

In interviews with Painting, Matthews says he was disturbed by this for a few reasons, a major one being, she paraphrases, that “if they were watching McVeigh and friends back then, they had likely continued watching them throughout the bombing plot.”6 “I felt Don knew more about this,” he said elsewhere.

What other items he knew may have been what came out later in Trentadue’s public records suit against the FBI. Dozens of witnesses to the bombing had apparently reported to police and the FBI they had seen someone in the passenger side of McVeigh’s truck while parked outside the Murrah building. Other witnesses reported seeing McVeigh with several people at his motel the night before, including someone sitting at some point behind the wheel of the truck—And Nichols himself (who was in Kansas when the bombing took place) told journalists in 2007 that FBI provocateurs had lent their support to McVeigh’s plans.7

Also disturbingly, using a fertilizer truck to blow up a federal building had been an idea Matthews had actually heard a few times before, including from suspected FBI infiltrators. For instance, he had heard it raised by two militia members he met who later became part of a busted plot to rob a bank, but who never got arrested, let alone jailed for it.

All of this would seem to point to the OKC bombing being something like 2010’s Operation Fast and Furious, in which the FBI intentionally put guns into the hands of criminals, but failed to close the loop leading to a border agent being killed by a Mexican cartel. Was OKC a similar ‘gunwalking case gone awry’? Only one, far, far deadlier? Someone who McVeigh contacted two weeks before the bombing, Andy Strassmeir, later told a journalist it is possible the FBI was “going to arrest McVeigh at the site with the bomb in hand, but he didn’t come at the right time.” “[M]aybe he changed the time”, he said, “you never know with people who are so unreliable.”8

Newsweek’s Complicity

In 2011, wishing to tell his story before he died, Matthews was put in touch with former Associated Press-writer and then-editor of Newsweek, John Solomon. At the time, Newsweek was still foremost in the U.S. media field, coming in second in circulation only to Time magazine. It was an important and respected news source. Over months, Solomon and article-author Ross Schneiderman worked with Matthews and other sources, including former FBI officials, to confirm everything he told them about the murky workings of PATCON, including the unanswered questions about its operatives’ possible involvement in the OKC bombing.

Enter Newsweek managing editor, Tina Brown. Above the heads of Solomon and Schneiderman, Brown (who left in 2013 and has been blamed for the periodical’s collapse) took what may have been a Pulitzer-worthy piece of journalism and cut away virtually all detail that could directly or indirectly impugn the government for the fallout of its PATCON operations. In the process, she reduced the original 7,000-word draft (found here) down to a mere 4,000 words (found here). As the since-defunct Examiner detailed at the time, all of the aforementioned suspicions Matthews aired about the FBI’s hand in the OKC bombing were cut.

Brown’s puzzling decision had real consequences for Matthews. As Painting recounts in her book, the dying Matthews had taken a lot of risk by coming forward. He was now Newsweek’s cover story, but for reasons that had been omitted. Now, he was still a target but “for no good reason and he regretted coming forward.”9

More broadly, by keeping such information away from the public, Brown was confirming the existence of a state-media axis in America. While examples of such direct state-interventions into our otherwise free media system are rare (although certainly plentiful enough), media analysts like Noam Chomsky have long posited that, yes, news outlets do profit off the circulation of their stories and are thus incentivized to objectively report on events potentially embarrassing to the powerful elite. But, the big media houses still need government access and wish to maintain good relations with major power centers; hence, their occasional compliance with direct government demands—One might add the promise of future political jobs as an incentive for compliance or, in cases such as this where right-wing groups were clearly being mistreated, plain old liberal media bias (consider, for instance, the fairly widereporting on the FBI’s infiltration of Islamic extremist groups).

It seems without a doubt that the FBI did get to Brown. At the time Matthews approached Newsweek, Attorney General Eric Holder’s Operation Fast and Furious-debacle was still in the news. How could the Obama Administration handle yet another and far bigger scandal involving the FBI helping dangerous people do harm against innocent Americans?

More Alarming Questions about FBI Conduct

Elsewhere, the FBI has demonstrated a serious interest in keeping any questions about the OKC bombing firmly under wraps. When Matthews was slated to testify in Trentadue’s 2014 public records case over the release of Murrah building surveillance footage, his fear of retaliation led to the judge allowing him to testify at a secret location by video—Trentadue thought what Matthews had witnessed while a PATCON operative would help provide a motive for what had become the FBI’s ongoing, unlawful refusal to provide the footage under public records law.

And despite the judge’s precautions, Matthews’s testimony still never took place. At the last minute, Matthews was supposedly threatened with having his VA medical benefits cut off and told to “stand down” by Jarrett and another FBI agent, Adam Quirk. Such a rank case of witness tampering, in fact, led to the judge ordering the FBI to reveal what exactly they had communicated to Matthews; an investigation that has been strangely ongoing since 2015.

At the heart of Trentadue’s marathon public records case certainly has the FBI worried. Someone who did manage to testify early on in the case was an Oklahoma police officer and first responder to the OKC bombing. He told the court he witnessed the FBI actually stop the beginning of the recovery process while victims were still under piles of rubble in order to remove a surveillance camera from the Murrah building. Some believe the camera would have recorded anyone else besides McVeigh who left the truck after it was parked and, in fact, did so.

Finally, there’s the questions about the FBI’s conduct vis-à-vis Trentadue himself. Why Trentadue got involved with the OKC case is because six weeks after the bombing, his brother Kenneth, another war vet, was taken into custody after a traffic incident triggered a parole violation relating to a minor event from years previous. Soon after, he was found hanging in a cell of a federal detention center.

Photos released to Trentadue following a subsequent lawsuit against the federal Bureau of Prisons, however, showed his brother’s throat having been cut and his body covered in bruises—authorities had apparently tried to cover his wounds with make-up before releasing it to Kenneth’s family. The theory behind his death is, having shared a close resemblance with someone called Richard Guthrie, a white supremacist who the FBI thought had information about the OKC bombing, Kenneth was mistaken as Guthrie and taken in by the FBI for interrogation. McVeigh himself called and advised Trentadue of this, telling him he heard that the FBI had indeed mistaken Kenneth for Guthrie and that his death was the result of a botched interrogation session.

Adding to suspicions, the DOJ formed a special team to handle media inquiries and the Trentadue family’s immediate requests for information. It apparently obstructed and delayed the Trentadue’s right to know what happened to Kenneth in every way it could, even when it came to releasing his corpse. Who happened to be the head of this operation (dubbed internally as “the Trentadue Mission”)?10 Then-Deputy Attorney General, Eric Holder.

Finally, there are the other related and mysterious deaths. After Guthrie himself was arrested, he told the LA Times he had “a couple grand juries to talk to” about what really happened with the OKC bombing, and was also later found hanging in his cell.11

And later in 1999, a supposed inmate and witness to Kenneth’s murder, Alden Gillis Baker, threatened to come forward about what he saw. He too was later found hanging in his cell.12


The details surrounding the OKC bombing show it to have all the elements of a “perfect,” post-war American tragedy: Vietnam vets disrespected by the liberal-media class and tossed aside by a government they loyally served; an unhinged federal bureaucracy using its sprawling resources to violate the civil rights of poor and ignored Americans; and, a state-liberal media-axis willing to cover up for government when the “cause” was right.

And consider the following. Even if we ignore the aforementioned evidence about the FBI’s hand in the OKC bombing, remember that the twin motivations for McVeigh’s crimes were Waco and Ruby Ridge—McVeigh chose April 19 as his bombing date because it was the same day as the Waco massacre two years previous. Matthews has actually expressed the view that both massacres had PATCON fingerprints all over them. That’s certainly the case with Ruby Ridge. There, a federal agent/infiltrator pushed former Green Beret Randy Weaver into selling him an illegal sawed-off shotgun. This led to his attempted arrest and an eventual standoff, which then led to the shooting deaths of his 14-year-son by federal marshals and his unarmed wife (baby in hand) by an FBI sniper.

In public and in private correspondence, McVeigh tore into the federal government over these events, expressing fear of a state that was at war with its own citizens. Without federal law enforcement acting so heinously in these events, it’s likely McVeigh would not have carried out the crime that he did.

Further, these rank FBI abuses ironically pushed “right-wing terror groups” to become the threat we were warned about all along. As the original Newsweek article rightly said about Ruby Ridge, the FBI’s conduct “quickly galvanized the radical right like never before” with talks between “various white supremacists, Neo-Nazis and anti-government groups… about joining forces… quickly turn[ing] to action.”

And as Painting writes, even more absurd perhaps, Ruby Ridge was used by federal law enforcement as a justification for increased PATCON resources and investigatory powers.13

So, we have FBI abuses leading to organized rage and resistance, which is then given even more momentum by FBI infiltration and incitement. And with the help of a media sphere that refuses to do its job, all of this works to amp up yet more fear, anxiety and division among the public. It’s a spinning wheel which loyal, patriotic Americans never asked for and certainly want off of.

While we should certainly hope these allegations can be explained away, it’s high-time the OKC victims and the American people generally get the transparency they deserve about what really happened that fateful day.

May 9, 2022 Posted by | Book Review, Civil Liberties, Deception, False Flag Terrorism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , | 2 Comments