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A 5th jab? Implications for the immune system

FDA advisory member hints at ‘original antigenic sin’

By Maryanne Demasi, PhD | September 6, 2022

Following the recent authorisation of the new omicron boosters, the former US Surgeon General encouraged Americans to receive two to four mRNA jabs annually.

Residents in northeast Australia have been told they might need a fifth dose by the end of the year.

In fact, it wasn’t that long ago that New South Wales’ top doctor said that people should expect to receive covid-19 booster shots “indefinitely.”

But could repeated boosters at close intervals be causing more harm than good?  I speak with experts concerned that policymakers are not following the science.

Europe sounded the alarm

Earlier this year, the European drug regulator sent a dire warning to the world. The agency was concerned that repeated boosters every four months could weaken a person’s immune response to the coronavirus.

Marco Cavaleri, the agency’s head of vaccines strategy, said that regular boosters might be “overloading people’s immune systems and leading to fatigue.”

I spoke with Cody Meissner, an FDA advisory member, ahead of the agency’s April 6 meeting, during which experts were to discuss the evidence for a fourth dose. He told me that he was not convinced by the data at the time.

Prof Cody Meissner, FDA advisory member

“I personally don’t think that we have sufficient basis on which to recommend a fourth dose, and we don’t know what the harm will be,” said Meissner.

“The reason we’re giving the vaccine is to keep people out of the intensive care unit and to keep people from dying, or even going into the hospital. So, before we vigorously endorse a fourth dose of this vaccine, I think we have to understand not only more about the immune response, but also about how much severe disease is occurring after three doses,” he added.

Meissner blamed socio-political interference for many of the questionable covid-19 strategies. “I think that the politicians and certain groups within society, such as the teacher’s union here in the United States, have driven a political agenda that is certainly not based on science. People like to say it’s based on science. It’s not. It’s based on emotion and generating great fear,” said Meissner.

Despite the concerns, most policymakers have forged ahead with recommending third, fourth and fifth doses for large swathes of the populations.

But over the past year, observational data have emerged from countries like the UK, Scotland and Australia showing that the most highly vaccinated people are acquiring the highest rates of covid-19 infections, suggesting that the vaccines have lost their effectiveness or something unexplained is happening.

Multiple jabs, multiple infections

Meissner hinted at a possible explanation for why someone’s immune response could be suppressed after multiple covid-19 shots. “It gets into this issue of ‘original antigenic sin’, which is still a theoretical issue, but may have some validity it seems to me,” said Meissner earlier this year.

Original antigenic sin – scientifically referred to as immune imprinting – is a phenomenon whereby prior exposure to one virus strain (e.g. wuhan stain) limits the development of immunity against new variants (omicron strain), because the immune system has been “imprinted” to favour the original strain.

This leaves the immune system trapped because the antibodies it prefers to produce against the original strain are ‘mismatched’ for the new strain.

Meissner said, “To keep vaccinating with very similar [wuhan] antigens, may or may not be beneficial — or the benefit may not outweigh the harm. I think we need to look at that.”

Since then, the data suggesting that immune imprinting is occurring, has only strengthened says Nikolai Petrovsky, Professor at Flinders University and developer of a protein-based covid-19 vaccine called SpikoGen® in use in Iran.

Prof Nikolai Petrovsky, Flinders University

“I feel the evidence for immune imprinting is increasingly compelling. It’s a known phenomenon with flu where it was first described, and the data now suggests it’s happening with covid-19,” said Petrovsky.

“The omicron vaccines may struggle to switch the immune system of a heavily vaccinated person to making omicron-specific antibodies, as their immune system is so heavily biased toward the Wuhan spike protein in the original vaccines. In the end, this could be harder to achieve in a vaccinated person than someone who has not yet been exposed to any spike protein, for example, someone unvaccinated,” he added.

Petrovsky says not only do too many shots of the mRNA vaccines increase the risk of immune imprinting, but they also seem to be uniquely pushing the immune system into “tolerance” against the virus.

“Immune tolerance” occurs when the immune system becomes unresponsive to a particular antigen after repeated exposure. This is the principle for desensitising people to allergy, i.e. by repeatedly injecting them with small doses of the offending allergen over time.

Petrovsky points to a recent pre-print study out of Germany. “People who’ve had three or more doses of mRNA showed a change in their antibodies to IgG4 which is typically an antibody associated with allergy desensitisation but not a normal antibody seen produced after infectious disease vaccines,” said Petrovsky.

Petrovsky said, “What this means, we simply don’t know as this has never been seen before.  That in itself is concerning as it indicates just how little we understand about what these new mRNA vaccines are doing and how they work. But to me, it raises a red flag that repeated doses of the mRNA vaccines might be driving immune tolerance against the virus. Maybe this could explain why the more doses of these vaccines, the less they seem to work, and more and more people are getting breakthrough infections?” Interestingly, the study did not find a similar shift in antibody patterns after AstraZeneca’s covid-19 vaccine.

Now, that the FDA has authorised the new bivalent boosters – which code for the original wuhan strain plus BA4/BA5 omicron lineages – without first requiring any human data to be collected, it has left many doubting that our public health authorities are even paying attention to the science.

September 7, 2022 Posted by | Science and Pseudo-Science | , , , , | 1 Comment

Coronavirus Fact-check #16: “Can you HEAR Covid19?”

OffGuardian | September 7, 2022

Yesterday, the UK’s Daily Mail published an article about a new app which claims to be able to diagnose Covid19 infection just through the sound of your voice.

The story was also covered by Sky, The Independent, the Telegraph and many others.

The Mail headlined:

Could a mobile APP replace lateral flows? Scientists reveal new Covid testing software that detects virus through a person’s voice in under a minute – and experts say it can be more accurate than a swab test

The article goes on to explain:

The Dutch researchers say coronavirus usually affects the upper respiratory tract and vocal chords, leading to changes in a person’s voice. The team decided to investigate whether it was possible to detect the novel virus in people’s voices.

This is not the first app to make this claim, as early in the “pandemic” as May 2020 an EU-funded group based in Cambridge began claiming they could diagnose “Covid” just by listening to people cough.

Now, does this make any sense? Is it really possible to diagnose disease just from the sound of someone’s voice?

Simply put, almost certainly not. Without seeing the scientists’ actual data it is not possible to rule it out completely, but there are multiple apparent issues.

  • “Covid19” is not the only infection which affects the respiratory tract. How could an app differentiate “Covid” and “flu”?
  • Different mobile devices have different microphones, how can the app distinguish feedback or interference from a sore throat?
  • Huge numbers of (alleged) Covid19 “cases” are supposedly symptomless, so the app could never detect those.
  • The only way to test the results is by confirming with PCR tests, which don’t work, or lateral flow tests, which also don’t work.

So, even if “Covid19” was a thing (which it isn’t), and even if we try to be objective and open-minded about the idea, it doesn’t seem like it would be any use at all.

And honestly, it feels like we’re giving the concept WAY more respect than it deserves. The very idea you can diagnose disease through the sound of a voice is completely ridiculous. But Covid times have enabled all the clowns in the world.

However, if you want a little silver lining read the comments below the Daily Mail article, and see that no one is buying this. One of them makes an interesting observation:

So they have harvested your DNA with the PCR test swabs, now they are after your voice print as well?

Is that what’s really going on here? We can’t rule it out.

September 7, 2022 Posted by | Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Science and Pseudo-Science | | Leave a comment

Judge orders Fauci and WH Press Secretary to hand over records related to online censorship pressure

By Dan Frieth | Reclaim The Net | September 7, 2022

The US District Court for the Western District of Louisiana issued a ruling, ordering Dr. Anthony Fauci and White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre to respond to document requests by the New Civil Liberties Alliance in conjunction with the Missouri and Louisiana attorneys general on behalf of plaintiffs in State of Missouri ex rel. Schmitt, et al. v. Joseph R. Biden, Jr., et al.

Judge Terry A. Doughty made the order, which has great importance for the millions of Americans experiencing censorship on social media – which is allegedly at the pressuring of government bodies and officials and would therefore be a violation of the First Amendment.

We obtained a copy of the order for you here.

The judge’s ruling was on “whether the White House Defendants, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean Pierre and Chief Medical Advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci should be compelled to respond to Plaintiffs’ interrogatories and document requests” and “[w]hether Dr. Fauci, in his capacity as National Institute of Allergy & Infectious Diseases (“NIAID”) Director, should be required to provide additional responses to Plaintiffs’ interrogatories and document requests.”

The judge ruled in favor of the plaintiffs and the defendants have no legal right to refuse to comply with the order.

“In accordance with the previous expedited discovery order, Plaintiffs served interrogatories and document requests upon White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre and upon Dr. Anthony Fauci in his capacity as Chief Medical Advisor to the President,” the ruling states. “Government Defendants have refused to provide any interrogatory responses or responsive documents, maintaining that these would be internal communications that would implicate serious separation of powers concerns, that Plaintiffs are required to exhaust other avenues for the discovery first, and that it would be unduly burdensome and disproportional to the needs of the case.”

“The breadth and extent of the government’s censorship activities has turned out to be massive and far exceeded that disclosed by the federal government in response to initial court-ordered discovery made public last week,” the NCLA said in a statement to Reclaim The Net.

Much light has recently been shed on the Federal Government’s role in calling for direct censorship on social media platforms, as a result of the documents obtained during the lawsuit. Collusion between social media platforms and the CDC was also evident.

NCLA is representing several plaintiffs, some of which are prominent and well-respected epidemiologists who were censored by Big Tech platforms for diverging from the White House’s narrative on COVID-19.

The US district court judge Terry A. Doughty ruled on Tuesday:

“First, the requested information is obviously very relevant to Plaintiffs’ claims. Dr. Fauci’s communications would be relevant to Plaintiffs’ allegations in reference to alleged suppression of speech relating to the lab-leak theory of COVID-19’s origin, and to alleged suppression of speech about the efficiency of masks and COVID-19 lockdowns,” the ruling continues. “Jean-Pierre’s communications as White House Press Secretary could be relevant to all of Plaintiffs’ examples.

“Government Defendants are making a blanket assertion of all communications to social media platforms by Dr. Fauci, and Jean-Pierre based upon executive privilege and presidential communications privilege,” the order adds. “Plaintiffs concede they are not asking for any internal White House communications, but only external communications between Dr. Fauci and/or Jean-Pierre and third-party social media platforms.”

September 7, 2022 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Deception, Full Spectrum Dominance, Science and Pseudo-Science | , | 1 Comment

Windfall Profits For Generators Running At £43 Billion A Year

By Paul Homewood | Not A Lot Of People Know That | September 7, 2022

Although rising international prices for natural gas have triggered the massive rise in wholesale electricity prices in the last year or so, they are only directly responsible for part of that rise.
As I have explained before, it is usually gas-fired generation that sets the wholesale price of electricity, which in August averaged £382/MWh:

image

https://www.catalyst-commercial.co.uk/works/september-2022-energy-market-brief/

As a result of this broken market, non-gas generators are making obscene windfall profits, with the exception of those on CfDs, which receive a fixed price. These generators produced 131 TWh last year, accounting for 45% of total generation:

Type       Twh
Wind 48
Solar 7
Bio 21
Coal 7
Nuclear 41
Hydro 7

At a price of £382/MWh, compared to a historic price level of around £50/MWh, these generators are raking in an incredible £43 billion. It is true that some generators may have Power Purchase Agreements in place at less than current prices – but this simply means that the purchaser is making the windfall instead. Either way electricity consumers are paying the cost of this on their bills.

The second major issue is the Carbon Price, which has more than doubled since last year and continues to rise>

image

https://www.catalyst-commercial.co.uk/works/september-2022-energy-market-brief/

The purpose of the Carbon Price is to increase the cost of fossil fuel generation, and thereby encourage the transition to renewables. However reports indicate that the wholesale price of natural gas will be capped, presumably at a much lower price than it is now. It is quite perverse therefore to then add back costs via the Carbon Price onto gas generators.

Based on my earlier calculations, the current Carbon Price of £92.65/tonne is adding £35/MWh to the cost of gas generation, and hence onto the wholesale electricity price. This translates to nearly £5 billion of windfall profit for non-gas generators.

The whole Carbon Pricing system should be suspended until further notice. As I understand it, that would need the unanimous agreement of devolved governments. Given the loons running Scotland and Wales, I would not hold my breath!

September 7, 2022 Posted by | Economics, Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity | | Leave a comment

9 Russian planes in Iran to receive maintenance: Minister

Press TV – September 7, 2022

Iran’s transport minister Rostam Qassemi says Russia has commissioned Iranian aviation companies for maintenance tasks on its airplanes.

Qassemi said on Wednesday that nine Russian passenger planes were in Iran to receive maintenance as he touted the technology existing in the Iranian civil aviation sector to carry out overhaul and inspection works on various types of aircraft.

“We have been in a good position in recent months in terms of aircraft maintenance,” said the minister without elaborating on the types of the Russian planes under repair in Iran.

The announcement comes amid reports of close cooperation between Iran and Russia to minimize the impacts of foreign sanctions on their economies.

Russian authorities have declared on several occasions that Moscow has been using the experience of Iranian companies and government agencies in dealing with foreign sanctions.

Iran and Russia have signed major deals in recent months to boost their economic, trade and energy cooperation.

Iran came under an inclusive regime of American sanctions in 2018 after Washington unilaterally withdrew from an international deal on Iran’s nuclear program.

The United States and allies imposed a raft of similar and even tougher sanctions on Russia in February after Moscow launched a military operation in Ukraine.

Experts say US sanctions failed to reach their ultimate objective of forcing Iran into major political and military concessions. They insist the bans even created an opportunity for Iran to diversify its economy away from crude revenues and rely more on its domestic resources.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Wednesday during an economic forum in Vladivostok that Russia was gaining from Western sanctions, saying Moscow saw more opportunities in entering markets in the Middle East and Iran after the sanctions were imposed.

September 7, 2022 Posted by | Economics, Russophobia | , , | 1 Comment

US Senator dismisses Israeli military probe on Abu Akleh’s murder

Palestinian journalist Shireen Abu Akleh
Press TV – September 7, 2022

A US Senator has dismissed an Israeli military investigation that claims there is a “high possibility” that veteran Palestinian journalist Shireen Abu Akleh was “accidentally hit” by an Israeli soldier in the occupied West Bank four months ago.

Democratic Senator Chris Van Hollen for Maryland posted a tweet on Wednesday, saying the existing evidence did not support the claim that a soldier accidentally killed Abu Akleh in the midst of a gun battle in Jenin.

Van Hollen said the United Nations and reconstructions by major news outlets had found the female journalist was not in the immediate vicinity of fighting with the Palestinian resistance fighters and could not have been caught in the crossfire.

“The crux of the ‘defense’ in this military report is that a soldier was ‘returning fire’ from armed Palestinians” when Abu Akleh was struck, Van Hollen said. “But investigations … found no such firing at the time. This underscores need for independent US inquiry into this American journalist’s death.”

The Committee to Protect Journalists has labeled the Israeli report “late and incomplete.”

“They provided no name for Shireen Abu [Akleh’s] killer and no other information than his or her own testimony that the killing was a mistake.”

Palestinian officials, rights advocates, and family of the slain journalist have already denounced the findings of the Israeli inquiry.

The journalist’s niece, Lina Abu Akleh, said the family had no confidence in the report. “We could never expect any type of accountability or legitimate investigation from the very entity responsible for gunning down an unarmed and clearly identifiable journalist.”

The family said an independent American investigation was “the bare minimum the US government should do for one of their own citizens.” The family also said Abu Akleh’s killing was a “war crime.”

On Monday, the Israeli military admitted that the journalist was “accidentally” killed by the regime’s gunfire on May 11, saying, however, that it will open no criminal investigation into the assassination.

The acknowledgement came after a final Israeli investigation concluded there was a “high possibility” the journalist had been shot dead by an Israeli soldier who mistook her for an armed Palestinian.

The report claimed she could have been shot by Palestinian gunfire even though all independent investigations on the shooting have totally dispelled the allegation.

Wearing press attire, the 51-year-old journalist was murdered in cold blood while covering an Israeli military raid. Later, her funeral was also attacked by the regime forces.

Israel’s account shifted several times over the four months. However, eyewitness accounts and videos of Abu Akleh and the area around her at the time of her killing do not show a gun battle.

A United Nations investigation earlier found Israeli soldiers fired “several single, seemingly well-aimed bullets” at Abu Akleh and other journalists.

Investigations by the New York Times, Washington Post, and CNN have questioned the official Israeli version of the episode.

Abu Akleh’s tragic death sent shock waves across the region, drawing global condemnation. Critics say the Israeli military has a long history of dissembling and making false claims over the killings of civilians.

September 7, 2022 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Subjugation - Torture, War Crimes | , , , | 7 Comments

Biden’s New War on Extremism (and Liberty)

By Jim Bovard | The Libertarian Institute | September 7, 2022

President Joe Biden believes that hysterical denunciations of extremism will save the Democratic Party in the upcoming congressional midterms. Despite media portrayals of Biden as a good-natured moderate, the president has relied on sweeping castigations of opposition throughout his political career. Worse, Biden’s rhetoric on extremism could signal an attack on any limits on presidential power.

Last Thursday in Philadelphia, Joe Biden overheated in a primetime speech with a backdrop seemingly inspired by a mix of the movie “V for Vendetta” and Nazi filmmaker Leni Riefenstahl. The harsh red atmospherics perfectly complimented Biden’s attempt to portray ex-president Donald Trump and his Republican supporters as the Anti-Christ waiting to crucify American democracy.

Biden declared that, “Trump and the MAGA Republicans represent an extremism that threatens the very foundations of our republic.” But he didn’t confess to the audience that he considered almost half of all Americans to be “extremists.”

A few hours before Biden’s speech, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre asserted, “When you are not with what majority of Americans are, then you know, that is extreme. That is an extreme way of thinking.” Is this wacko definition of extremism designed to vilify anyone who doubts Biden will save America’s soul?

Four days later, speaking in Wisconsin, Biden declared, “Extreme MAGA Republicans in Congress have chosen to go backwards—full of anger, violence, hate, and division… Extreme MAGA Republicans don’t just threaten our personal rights and our economic security, they embrace political violence.” A week before the Philadelphia speech Biden denounced Republicans for “semi-fascism.”

To vanquish extremism, Biden called for everyone to “unite behind the single purpose of defending our democracy.” In other words, everyone must support Joe Biden or democracy will be destroyed. But Biden’s version of democracy is a parody of the Constitution. He believes that thanks to 43,000 votes in three swing states, he has unlimited power to dictate how Americans must live.

In his Philadelphia speech, Biden invoked the “Rule of Law” five times, notwithstanding his twenty months of dictatorial decrees. Law Professor Jonathan Turley observed, “President Biden has arguably the worst record of losses in [federal court] the first two years of any recent presidential administration.” The only limits on his power that Biden recognizes come from his pollsters, not from the Constitution.

Since Biden took office, his appointees have exploited “extremism” to sanctify stretching his power. Last year, the Biden administration revealed that guys who can’t get laid may be terrorist threats due to “involuntary celibate–violent extremism.” The White House did not disclose whether self-abuse was the latest terrorist warning sign. A senior administration official (speaking anonymously to the media) said the new program would encourage people: “If you see something, say something.” The Biden report stressed that federal law enforcement agencies “play a critical role in responding to reports of criminal and otherwise concerning activity.”

“Otherwise concerning activity”? This is the same standard that turned prior anti-terrorist efforts into farces.

Refusing to get injected with an experimental vaccine is another badge of extremism according to Biden scorekeepers. On August 13, 2021 the Department of Homeland Security issued a terrorist alert, warning that “anti-government/anti-authority violent extremists could exploit…potential re-establishment of public health restrictions across the United States as a rationale to conduct attacks.” Anyone who loudly objects to being locked back under house arrest thus became the moral equivalent of the Taliban, or maybe Hezbollah.

The following month, Biden gave a primetime address which dictated a COVID vaccine mandate for more than 80 million private employees and also portrayed the unvaccinated as public enemies. By the time Biden codified his decree in a November Federal Register notice, the efficacy of the COVID vaccine had fallen to less than 50%. But Biden apparently believed he was entitled to force people to get injected no matter how badly Pfizer shots failed. In January, the Supreme Court struck down Biden’s vax mandate for private companies.

The Biden administration won’t let the Constitution impede its war on extremism. As part of this new priority, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) may exploit a “legal work-around” to spy on and potentially entrap Americans who are “perpetuating the ‘narratives’ of concern,” CNN reported last year. But federal informant programs routinely degenerate into “dollars for collars” schemes that reward scoundrels for fabricating crimes that destroy the lives of innocent Americans. The DHS plan would “allow the department to circumvent [constitutional and legal] limits” on surveillance of private citizens and groups. Federal agencies are prohibited from targeting individuals solely for First Amendment-protected speech and activities. But federal hirelings would be under no such restraint. Private informants could create false identities that would be problematic if done by federal agents.

One DHS official bewailed to CNN, “Domestic violent extremists are really adaptive and innovative. We see them… couching their language so they don’t trigger any kind of red flag on any platforms.” DHS officials have apparently decided that certain groups of people are guilty regardless of what they say (“couching their language”). The targets will likely include gun owners who distrust the politicians who vow to seize their guns. Any excesses by the new informants will be excused because they are for the sacred cause of saving democracy (or at least crippling Biden’s opposition).

Anyone who vigorously opposes federal power can get tarred as an extremist. On the day that Joe Biden was inaugurated, former CIA chief John Brennan announced on television that federal intelligence agencies “are moving in laser-like fashion to try to uncover as much as they can about” about extremists, libertarians, and other malefactors. Federal entrapment operations may have already harvested a heap of hapless individuals who could be indicted when politically convenient.

The definition of “extremism” is a flag of convenience for the political establishment. The definition of “extremism” has forever been in flux. The only consistent element in definitions of extremism is that politicians always win. A 2013 Pentagon training manual explained, “All nations have an ideology, something in which they believe. When a political ideology falls outside the norms of a society, it is known as extremism.” In other words, beliefs that differ from prevailing or approved opinions are “extremist” by definition. And who gets to say what is acceptable to believe? The same politicians and government agencies and their media allies whose power is buttressed by prevailing opinions.

“Extremism” is even more vaporous than “terrorism.” With terrorism, at least the individual or group is purportedly committing (or planning to commit) some violent act. An extremist, on the other hand, is someone with a bad attitude who might do something unpleasant in the future. Crackdowns on potential extremists provide the perfect tool to demonize dissent.

Will the Biden crackdown on extremists end as ignominiously as Nixon’s crackdown almost 50 years earlier? Nixon White House aide Tom Charles Huston explained that the FBI’s COINTELPRO program continually stretched its target list “from the kid with a bomb to the kid with a picket sign, and from the kid with the picket sign to the kid with the bumper sticker of the opposing candidate. And you just keep going down the line.” At some point, surveillance became more intent on spurring fear than on gathering information. FBI agents were encouraged to conduct interviews with anti-war protesters to “enhance the paranoia endemic in these circles and further serve to get the point across that there is an FBI agent behind every mailbox,” as a 1970 FBI memo noted. Is the Biden castigation campaign an attempt to make its opponents fear that the feds are tracking their every email and website click?

The Biden administration could be expanding the federal “Enemies List” faster than any time since the 1970s. Will Biden’s war on extremism succeed in radically narrowing the boundaries of respectable American political thought? Permitting politicians to blacklist any ideas they disapprove won’t “restore faith in democracy.” What if government is the most dangerous extremist of them all?

Jim Bovard is the author of Public Policy Hooligan (2012), Attention Deficit Democracy (2006), Lost Rights: The Destruction of American Liberty (1994), and 7 other books. He is a member of the USA Today Board of Contributors and has also written for the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Playboy, Washington Post, and other publications. His articles have been publicly denounced by the chief of the FBI, the Postmaster General, the Secretary of HUD, and the heads of the DEA, FEMA, and EEOC and numerous federal agencies.

September 7, 2022 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Deception, Full Spectrum Dominance | , , | 1 Comment

Russian economy back on track – Putin

Samizdat – September 7, 2022

The economic situation in Russia has stabilized, President Putin said at a plenary session of the Eastern Economic Forum (EEF) on Wednesday.

“I would like to note that we believe, both in the government and in the presidential administration, our experts believe that the peak, the most difficult period [for the country’s economy], has passed. The situation is normalizing, and macroeconomic indicators speak of this,” Putin said.

The president indicated that this year’s budget will be in surplus, explaining: “Our state finances have stabilized, I want to note that this year’s budget will be drawn up with a surplus of almost half a trillion rubles, somewhere under 485 billion rubles (almost $8 billion), despite all the gloomy forecasts.”

According to the Russian president, annual inflation in the country is on a downward trend. “I think that according to the results for the year, we will have [inflation] somewhere around 12%, and according to many of our experts, in the first quarter or by the second quarter of next year, we will most likely reach the target indicators – 5% or 6%, and some even project that the level of 4% may be in reach,” Putin said.

The government will do everything to support prices and suppress inflation, the Russian president stressed. Putin pointed out that the ruble and financial markets have also stabilized, while the unemployment rate has reached a historic low of less than 4%.

September 7, 2022 Posted by | Economics | | 1 Comment

Daesh attacks Embassy in Kabul amid wave of violence against Russians

By Lucas Leiroz | September 7, 2022

The recent attack on the Russian embassy in Kabul was another shocking episode in the current wave of assaults against Russian civilians around the world. Daesh claimed responsibility for the crime, which raises a number of suspicions about possible cooperation between anti-Russian groups abroad, considering the links between Islamic terrorists, Western intelligence and Ukrainian neo-Nazis.

On August 5, the Russian Embassy in Afghanistan was the target of a terrorist attack. A suicide bomber approached the entrance to the Embassy facility and operated the explosion, killing two Russian diplomatic staff’s employees, as well as at least six Afghan citizens who were nearby. The Embassy’s guards even shot down the terrorist, but the action was not fast enough to prevent self-detonation, which culminated in the tragedy. Several people remain hospitalized, and the number of deaths could increase in the coming days.

Although several hostilities against Russians have already taken place in Afghanistan in the past, this is the first time that such an attack has taken place since the Taliban took Kabul, after the American defeat in 2021. According to local sources, Daesh, which is an enemy of the Taliban and has acted intensively in the country to harm the new government, claimed responsibility for the attack. In fact, the incident was characterized by a number of similarities with Daesh’s praxis in other assaults, which would raise suspicions about the group’s involvement even if responsibility had not been assumed. 

Russia is one of the few countries to maintain an embassy in Kabul after the Taliban took over the country. Although Moscow still does not officially recognize the Taliban government, Russian diplomats are talking to local authorities in order to advance bilateral negotiations, currently having plans to improve the supply of fuel and other commodities. The Russian government is working to overcome old rivalries with the Taliban and reach a positive agreement for all sides, as the Afghan situation currently appears to be between a stable government with the Taliban or the absolute chaos of the civil war operated by terrorist organizations, such as Daesh. The mere fact of maintaining bilateral dialogue with the de facto government of the Taliban seems to be reason enough for terrorists to target Russian citizens.

However, it would be naive to think that the reasons for this attack are limited to pragmatic Moscow-Kabul relations. If this were the only reason, certainly other episodes of terrorism would have already occurred at the Embassy at other times. There is undoubtedly something specific motivating this violence at this time. The main suspicion is that the attack is related to the publication by the Russian Embassy of a list of names of Afghan citizens who had applied to receive student visas in Russia. But it is possible that there are even more issues involved in this case.

One of the most neglected topics about the Ukrainian conflict is that since 2014 there has been vast cooperation between Kiev’s neo-Nazis and foreign terrorists, including members of Daesh. Many Daesh leaders and fighters migrated to Ukraine, especially after the defeat of terrorists in Syria with the Russian military intervention in 2015. More than that, saboteurs affiliated with the Islamic State and Ukrainian neo-Nazi militias allegedly had already conspired together to carry out terrorist attacks within Russian territory itself, according to FSB data published in 2017.

With the start of the Russian special military operation in Ukraine, the situation may have become more serious. In June, the Syrian government provided Russia with intelligence data proving the collaboration of Western powers and Turkey to send Daesh fighters to Ukraine. There is no precise information on the number of fighters and their identities, but it seems quite evident that Daesh members have been in Ukraine over the last eight years and that they are now continuing there, fighting Russian forces. And that brings up a series of suspicions about what may have happened in Kabul.

Apparently, the attack on the Embassy was just another typical episode of the criminal cowardice that has been seen in the praxis of anti-Russian forces. Saboteurs have operated to kill Russian civilians in various parts of the world. The murder of Daria Dugina in the middle of the Moscow oblast was a clear example of this. In the same vein, what happened in Kabul, whether or not there was foreign participation, seems to be related to this wave of violence against Russian civilian targets.

Deeper investigations are needed to conclude what actually motivated the attack and whether there was participation or sponsorship by Western or Ukrainian groups. However, the main fact is that who attacked the Embassy was Daesh – and Daesh fights Russia in Ukraine.

Lucas Leiroz is a researcher in Social Sciences at the Rural Federal University of Rio de Janeiro; geopolitical consultant. 

September 7, 2022 Posted by | False Flag Terrorism, War Crimes | , , , , | 3 Comments

EU suggests price cap on US LNG

Samizdat – September 7, 2022

Brussels is examining the possibility of a price ceiling on all gas imported into the EU, including liquefied natural gas (LNG), European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said on Wednesday.

“LNG is scarce and can be rerouted to different regions… We [want to] stay competitive for LNG suppliers but make sure that the prices we pay are not extraordinarily high but in a decent range,” she told reporters. EU countries mostly import the costly LNG from the US and Qatar, using it to diversify gas imports in light of shrinking supplies from Russia. However, some analysts warn that producers might not be eager to supply the fuel to European countries if their profits are capped.

Von der Leyen noted that enacting the proposal is not imminent and that they would be further discussed at a later date.

She did, however, unveil a number of other proposals aimed at tackling the EU’s worsening energy crisis, including a bloc-wide plan to reduce electricity consumption, a price cap on the excess revenues made by companies involved in renewable and nuclear energy, a mechanism to capture the profits that fossil-fuel companies make due to rising prices, a state aid program for utilities businesses, and a price cap on Russian pipeline gas imports.

Commenting on the last of these, she said the mechanism is necessary to “cut Russia’s revenues which Putin uses to finance this atrocious war against Ukraine.” She noted that since Russia launched its military operation in Ukraine, the share of Russian pipeline gas in the EU’s total imports has dropped from 40% to 9%, while Norway has replaced Russia as the bloc’s leading gas supplier.

September 7, 2022 Posted by | Economics | , , | Leave a comment

US military renewing interest in artillery as Russia dominates the battlefield

By Drago Bosnic | September 7, 2022

Artillery has been an integral part of warfare for centuries, but its impact has become exponentially more prominent in the last two centuries, with the advent of the Industrial Revolution and the resulting mass-production economies. The majority of combat deaths in the Napoleonic, First and Second World Wars were fought for the main part with artillery. Napoleon himself said that “God is on the side with the best artillery,” while Joseph Stalin stated that “Artillery is the God of war.” 

Although the Napoleonic Wars and even the Second World War might seem too distant for us to even contemplate any similarities with modern 21st-century warfare, the truth is that little has changed in this regard. Russia’s special military operation in Ukraine has proven this to be true. While air power, drones, long-range missiles and other modern weapons play a significant part in shaping the battlefield, the truth is that artillery is still doing most of the work.

Both the Russian Armed Forces and the Kiev regime’s troops have inherited enormous quantities of artillery from the former Soviet military and both have deployed it en masse. Artillery is playing an indispensable role in determining the balance of power on the ground, with the Kiev regime asking the political West for as many towed and self-propelled guns as possible in order to counter Russia’s dominance. 

The problem is that NATO and other US-aligned countries have put a lot more emphasis on air power, especially as Western combat experience in the last two to three decades indicates that air power alone should be enough to win wars. While this might be true against numerous opponents with no ways to counter the US and NATO air dominance, nothing could be further from the truth when it comes to countries like Russia, which has been a world leader in air defense for over half a century now and is also fielding the second most powerful air force on the planet.

Questioned before the House Armed Services Committee on May 12, Secretary of the Army Christine Wormuth and Army Chief of Staff General James McConville both concluded when asked “What are the systems that are going to put you into position to win that fight like the fight that’s playing out in Ukraine?” that long-range artillery and tactical missiles would be essential. General McConville stated that these systems have been key priorities for Army modernization. In addition to tactical missiles, the US Military Industrial Complex is having trouble replacing artillery munitions for the US Army, which is creating problems for both the US itself and the Kiev regime, which cannot hope to match the Russian military’s artillery volume. Back in mid-June, retired US Colonel and former Virginia State Senator Richard H. Black stated:

“Yes, the war is not over, but it is lost. Let me tell you why. This has become an artillery duel: Russia fires 50,000 shells a day, 10 times more than Ukraine. Washington Post says that Ukraine is almost completely without weapons and there were no analogs left from the Soviet era. On June 10, the same Washington Post said that Ukraine was suffering thousands of casualties, including at least 200 killed per day. Casualties doubled in just three weeks. With a population much smaller than the US, Ukraine loses 6,000 soldiers every month, 12 times more than America lost in Vietnam. The Ukrainians fought with courage, but no nation can sustain such huge casualties for long. Ukraine is finished.”

According to Task & Purpose, back in February 2018, the US Army asked Congress for money to buy approximately 150,000 shells for 155mm howitzers. Although this represented an 825% increase in the number of shells the US Army wanted to acquire, the very fact that the Russian military fired as many shells in just three days is a testament to the massive discrepancy in doctrine between the two superpower militaries. 

Since February, the US has provided 806,000 shells for 155mm howitzers and another 108,000 shells for 105mm guns to the Kiev regime, according to the US Department of Defense. That’s close to 1 million shells in approximately six months, and the figure doesn’t even include the precision-guided rockets for the M142 HIMARS that the US military has also handed over to the Neo-Nazi junta forces.

“The use of artillery in warfare has always involved huge expenditures of ammunition,” retired Marine Col. Mark Cancian, with the Center for International Studies think tank in Washington DC, told Task & Purpose. “Artillery expenditures increase substantially when front lines stabilize as has happened in Ukraine,” Cancian added. “When there’s a lot of battlefield movement, artillery expenditures ease off because batteries on the move can’t fire and transportation of ammunition becomes harder. The stabilized front lines and consequent large increases in artillery firing often lead to a ‘shell shortage.'”

“One problem facing the United States now is that much of its industrial capacity to produce artillery shells went away after the end of the [First] Cold War more than 30 years ago, and 155mm shells have a life expectancy of 20 years,” retired Col. said.

The Wall Street Journal has also revealed that defense officials are concerned that the US military’s stockpile of 155mm shells has become “uncomfortably low.” This might soon become a problem for the Kiev regime, as its forces, although already outgunned at 10:1, are burning through artillery munitions much faster than the current Western production capacity can cover.

Drago Bosnic is an independent geopolitical and military analyst.

September 7, 2022 Posted by | Aletho News | , , , | Leave a comment

Moscow sounds alarm over Ukrainian grain deal

Samizdat – September 7, 2022

The grain deal with Ukraine which was supposed to allow Russia to deliver fertilizers and food products to global markets has failed to do so, Vassily Nebenzia, Russia’s permanent representative to the UN, claimed on Tuesday.

Speaking to reporters, Nebenzia revealed that not a single Russian vessel with grain has managed to leave port, despite an earlier UN- and Turkey-brokered agreement that unblocked Ukrainian grain shipments via the Black Sea in exchange for lifting restrictions on Russian exports of the product.

The diplomat hinted that Russia could refuse to extend the deal, given that the provisions on its exports are not being fulfilled. “The agreement was concluded for four months. In other words, it ends in November. In a normal [situation], the deal should be extended. Given the results, or rather the lack of results, I do not rule out anything.”

“We want to see the implementation of the Russian part of the agreement. So far, this hasn’t happened,” Nebenzia said.

His comments echo earlier remarks from Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, who said on Tuesday that Western countries had not fulfilled their promise to lift secondary restrictions on Russian grain and fertilizers, impeding their access to the global market.

The deal to unblock grain exports via the Black Sea was signed at UN-brokered talks in Istanbul in late July, aiming to maintain safe transit routes. In late August, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said there “are no problems” with Ukrainian grain shipments, adding that dozens of vessels have been able to pass through.

Wheat deliveries from Ukraine, a major producer, were disrupted after Russia launched its military operation in the neighboring state in late February. The two sides traded accusations over who was responsible for the stoppage of cargo traffic out of the Ukrainian ports. Since August 1, however, when shipments from the ports resumed, they have delivered around 2 million tons of food products to global markets.

September 7, 2022 Posted by | Economics, Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity | , | Leave a comment