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Journalists Continue Their Valiant Struggle to Make Monkeypox a Thing

eugyppius | a plague chronicle | october 28, 2022

Remember that scary rash-cum-fever from Africa that was going to be The Next Pandemic before it turned out to infect almost exclusively gay men having unprotected sex with other gay men? Well, you’ll be happy to know that there are still a few media outlets out there trying to make somebody care about it:

Monkeypox is causing devastating outcomes for people with severely weakened immune systems, even as new cases continue to decline in the United States, according to a federal report released Wednesday. At least 10 people hospitalized with monkeypox have died.

More than 28,000 cases of monkeypox have been reported since the U.S. outbreak began in May. While the vast majority recover within weeks, some patients with untreated HIV experienced especially dire consequences, such as losing function of their brain or spinal cord, eyes and lungs despite being given antiviral medication.

The report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is based on the agency’s consultations with clinicians treating 57 U.S. patients hospitalized with monkeypox complications from the outbreak’s peak in mid-August through Oct. 10. It presents the most comprehensive picture of the severe consequences of infection and who is most at risk for serious complications.

You know what other viruses cause “devastating outcomes for people with severely weakened immune systems”? Basically all of them. If you’re sick and dying even the common cold can be dangerous, and here monkeypox is the least of anyone’s worries. Ten deaths (of which seven are still “under investigation” with no officially determined cause) from 28,000 cases works out to a case fatality rate of .036%.

But wait! Monkeypox might still turn out to be bad, somehow, maybe! The outbreak might “accelerate and affect increasingly wider communities,” if it could only be persuaded to circulate among heterosexuals! Or maybe “the virus could get established in an animal host”! Just don’t ask how that could happen! (And who knew the Post would stoop to such unsavoury homophobia?)

It’s funny to laugh at these guys, but sobering to consider how ramped up the pandemic panic machine must be, that even this obvious non-starter got the mileage that it did. This bodes poorly for the future.

October 28, 2022 Posted by | Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Science and Pseudo-Science | | 1 Comment

Trudeau invoked Emergencies Act despite deal to end protests, hearing finds

By Dan Frieth | Reclaim The Net | October 28, 2022

During the ongoing public hearings into the use of the Emergencies Act, it was revealed that the Freedom Convoy organizers, the federal government, and police were on the verge of reaching a deal to end the protests before the government invoked the authoritarian act anyway.

The Emergencies Act allowed the government to freeze the bank accounts of the civil liberties protesters.

Freedom Convoy’s counsel Brendan Miller asked Ontario Provincial Police Inspector Marcel Beaudin what happened to the deal to end the protest peacefully that was proposed on February 11. Beaudin said that he felt the proposal was “dead in the water,” and it was probably not presented to the federal government before the EA was invoked.

Miller said the deal was presented to the federal government, they just ignored it.

Miller asked: “Did you know that meeting was at 3:30 pm and that it was with cabinet and that it was the incident response group of the political executive meeting and that your proposal was provided to them?”

Beaudin said, “No.”

“It was. I can tell you that. And then they invoked the Emergencies Act,” Miller responded.

A memo outlining the deal read: “The deal would be: Leave the protest and denounce unlawful activity and you will be heard.”

Freedom Convoy organizers would have honored their end of the deal by removing over 100 trucks from residential streets and would remove more as negotiations went on.

“The recommendation was essentially, the political branch of the Government of  would agree to a meeting with the protesters but there would be certain conditions to that and they would have to denounce anything unlawful and get out of downtown Ottawa,” said Miller.

The invocation of the EA before attempting to reach a deal is a potential violation of the EA, which states that it should only be used when there is a situation “that cannot be effectively dealt with under any other law of Canada.”

The EA was revoked a few days after it was invoked. However, within those few days, the police had forcefully removed peaceful protesters from the streets and the bank accounts of supporters of the protest frozen.

October 28, 2022 Posted by | Civil Liberties | , , | 1 Comment

Oxford, England proposes dystopian surveillance system that limits driving

By Ken Macon | Reclaim The Net | October 27, 2022

If the city goes through with plans, motorists might need special permits and open themselves up to more surveillance to drive through Oxford, England. The Oxfordshire County Council is considering giving permits to households that only allow them to drive through the city for 100 days per year per vehicle.

To implement the plan, ANPR (automatic number plate readers) cameras will be installed at “traffic filter” locations across the city.

Private cars will not be allowed across the filters without a permit. All other vehicles, including coaches, buses, vans, taxis, mopeds, HGVs, and motorbikes will be allowed through traffic filters at all times.

Consultation for the plan ended October 13 and the council is expected to make a decision in November. If they approve the plan, it will cost £3 million ($3.48 million) to implement.

Oxfordshire County Council’s minister for highways management Andrew Grant said that the traffic filter scheme is part of a “vision for a vastly improved Oxford.”

“We want to improve lives, transport and health for the people that live and work here. We have done a lot of modeling to reach these locations and we want to encourage people to choose to use their cars less,” he added.

“This is not about being anti-car, it’s about managing the way we use our roads so that they are safe for everyone. It’s about designing Oxford for the next decades and we want to hear from everyone. I would encourage people to comment and take part in the consultation, especially people who would not normally think about going online and commenting on it.”

Some that are against the plan have voiced their opinion.

Over 3,400 people have signed a petition opposing the installation of traffic filters on Hollow Way and Marston Ferry Road.

October 28, 2022 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity | , | 1 Comment

EU approves gasoline car ban

Samizdat | October 28, 2022

The EU has reached an agreement that would oblige carmakers to achieve a 100% cut in CO2 emissions by 2035. The measure would effectively ban the sale of new petrol and diesel-fueled cars in the bloc starting from that year. The deal was struck on Thursday between negotiators from EU member states, the European Parliament, and the European Commission, which all must agree when a new law is to be adopted within the EU.

“The European Commission welcomes the agreement reached last night by the European Parliament and Council ensuring all new cars and vans registered in Europe will be zero-emission by 2035,” the Commission said in a press release following the deal’s announcement.

The agreement also included a 55% cut in CO2 emissions for new cars sold from 2030 against 2021 levels, which exceeds the existing target of a 37.5% reduction.

EU climate policy chief Frans Timmermans said the agreement is a signal to all that “Europe is embracing the shift to zero-emission mobility.”

According to the press release, the new regulation aims “to make the EU’s transport system more sustainable, provide cleaner air for Europeans, and marks an important step in delivering the European Green Deal.”

The agreement is provisionary and now requires formal adoption by both the European Parliament and the EU Council. The timeframe for this is so far unclear.

October 28, 2022 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity | | Leave a comment

EU sticks to lockdowns, masks and vaccine passports

By Will Jones | TCW Defending Freedom | October 27, 2022

The EU has set out its commitment to the continued use of lockdowns, mask mandates, vaccine passports and other restrictions this winter to control the spread of Covid-19, and also to the creation of a ‘legally binding’ global pandemic treaty with a ‘reinforced World Health Organisation at its centre’.

The document, published on September 2 and titled EU response to COVID-19: preparing for autumn and winter 2023, was prepared by the EU Commission (the EU executive) and sent to the EU Parliament. It reveals how much in thrall to the new biosecurity orthodoxy the EU leadership is and bodes ill for the future management of contagious disease in the bloc and globally.

On lockdowns and other restrictions, it proposes a framework of ‘key indicators to assess when deciding on reintroducing non-pharmaceutical measures’. These indicators include severe disease and hospital occupancy data, and importantly are stated to relate not just to Covid-19 but to influenza as well, potentially making this part of normal winter disease management indefinitely.

It suggests mask mandates as a ‘first option to limit community transmission’, giving a preference for FFP2 masks.

The document recommends the pre-emptive imposition of work-from-home and gathering limits before any rise in infections to try to avoid the ‘need for more disruptive ones such as lockdowns, closing businesses and schools, stay-at-home recommendations and travel restrictions’. It stresses the need for ‘political commitment’ to make lockdowns and other measures work.

The one welcome aspect of the document was the clear statement to avoid disrupting children’s education and lives any further, though even here school closures were not ruled out: ‘The Covid-19 pandemic has disrupted the lives of children and adolescents affecting their everyday routines, education, health, development and overall well-being. It is therefore important to keep in mind the negative impacts of school disruptions on the health and development of children. The implementation of measures at schools should be aimed to be kept at a minimum and the further loss of learning should be prevented.’

The document discourages travel restrictions – freedom of travel and the elimination of internal borders being an article of faith for the EU. However, it recommends use of the EU Digital Covid Certificate (i.e., vaccine passport, though it also recognises natural immunity) wherever travel restrictions are necessary’, boasting about how widely it is already used.

‘The EU Digital Covid Certificate has been a major success in providing the public with a tool that is accepted and trusted across the EU (and in several third countries) and in avoiding fragmentation of multiple national systems. As of August 1st 2022, 75 countries and territories from across five continents are connected to the EU Digital Certificate system (30 EU/EEA Member States and 45 non-EU countries and territories), and several more countries have expressed interest in joining the gateway or are already engaged in technical discussions with the Commission. This makes the EU Digital Covid Certificate a global standard.’

What this fails to mention, of course, is any rationale for the passes. What’s the point of restricting the travel of the unvaccinated (or not-sufficiently-vaccinated) when the vaccinated are no less likely to spread the disease? This key question is entirely unaddressed.

On vaccination, the document provides 15 ‘objectives’, ‘priorities’ and ‘actions’ for Covid-19 vaccination strategies. These include the ‘priority’ of encouraging take-up of the original vaccine (that’s right, for the extinct Covid strains) among all eligible children and adolescents, and an action point of making sure GPs are spending enough of their time vaccinating people (don’t they have anything else to do?) It suggests administering boosters as often as every three months, implying they are of little use after six months. It also encourages governments to counter ‘misinformation’ in the media and online to ensure ‘clear, consistent and evidence-based messaging demonstrating the continued safety and effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines’. It links worries about vaccine safety with ‘anti-Western and anti-EU narratives’ and with websites which also go off-narrative on the Ukraine war.

The document also trails a forthcoming ‘EU global health strategy’ which ‘will provide the political framework with priorities, governance and tools, enabling the EU to speak with one influential voice and making the most of Team Europe’s capacity to protect and promote health globally’.

This is a very disturbing document. For those of us who still hold to the evidence-based pandemic strategies of pre-2020, premised only on mitigating impacts by expanding emergency healthcare capacity and finding safe and effective treatments, and not imposing intrusive, harmful and unproven methods of trying to prevent the spread of a disease that is anyway harmless to most people, this bodes ill indeed for the current direction of travel in Europe and globally.

October 28, 2022 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Science and Pseudo-Science | , , , | 2 Comments

England: Social worker fired over social media posts wins case

By Christina Maas | Reclaim The Net | October 25, 2022

Social Work England dropped the case against Rachel Meade, a social worker and member of the Free Speech Union (FSU), who was suspended over posts on her personal  page.

A complaint about the posts was filed by Sport England’s Diversity Champion Aedan Wolton. That single complaint resulted in the suspension of Meade from her social worker position at the Westminster City Council.

Meade’s ‘crime’ was sharing links to articles covering transgender issues and petitions and blog posts on the national debate about if it is right for people to self-identify their gender. The case lasted for almost two years.

Meade told the Daily Mail that the “last two years have been nothing short of an Orwellian nightmare for me and my family.”

“My apparent crime was to share some news articles and petitions about the self-ID gender debate to fewer than 50 friends on Facebook. I found myself wrongly accused of holding abhorrent transphobic views,” she added.

Her lawyer, Shazia Khan, said Social Work England violated Meade’s freedom of speech and asked for an apology to Meade. The organization refused to apologize.

October 28, 2022 Posted by | Civil Liberties | | Leave a comment

Will Ursula von der Leyen be forced to resign, and will her deeds be investigated?

By Vladimir Danilov – New Eastern Outlook – 28.10.2022

Europe has been rocked by large-scale protests over the last few weeks, and many politicians and media organizations in the EU see this as a reflection of public dissatisfaction with the policies of the European Commission and especially its head, Ursula von der Leyen. The main concern is the rising cost of living, the rapid increase in energy and food prices, and the anti-Russian policies of the European Commission, which have led to an energy and economic crisis that is affecting not only Europe but many other countries who have committed themselves to a close relationship with Europe.

Always keen to show her unwavering support for Washington and London, in her speech at the inaugural summit of the European Political Community, the President of the European Commission extended a warm welcome to Liz Truss – despite the fact that no-one other than Ursula von der Leyen considers the former British premier’s policies to be a success. As the Daily Express notes, the speech was greeted with an uncomfortable silence.

Internet users in the EU have criticized Ursula von der Leyen’s most recent promises to help the Kiev regime “as long as is necessary” and provide Ukraine with billions upon billions of Euros in credit. Her statements have been attacked on social media as ignoring the interests and wishes of EU citizens, and users have called for her resignation.

Writing on Twitter, the French politician Florian Filippo criticized her call for regular subsidies for Ukraine: “Ursula is completely crazy! Lock her up!”

In an interview with Le journal du Dimanche, the former French president Nicolas Sarkozy has accused the European Commission of lacking the authority to make decisions on arms purchases. As he explained, the European Commission is an administrative body, and it is unclear on what basis Ursula von der Leyen considers that she has the authority to speak up on matters relating to foreign policy or arms purchases. Just a few days after the beginning of Russia’s special operation in Ukraine, the President of the European Commission announced that the EU would finance “the purchase and delivery of arms and other military equipment” to Ukraine. Europeans are continually hearing about the need to provide the Kiev regime with billions of euros from EU coffers to buy arms, and they blame Ursula von der Leyen. Nicolas Sarkozy alleges that the EU’s policy in relation to Ukraine was too dependent on “escalation, irritation and thoughtless actions.”

The Israeli television channel i24news and the former Socialist candidate for the French presidency (in the 2007 elections) Ségolène Royal have also recently criticized Ursula von der Leyen’s stance. Ségolène Royal claims that instead of helping Russia to stop the war, the President of the European Commission is lobbying on behalf of the USA’s Ukraine policy and has effectively become a NATO and Pentagon press secretary.

In addition to the criticism’s of her policies, Ursula von der Leyen has also found herself at the center of corruption scandals in recent months. Especially since the beginning of the European public prosecutor’s investigation into EU purchases of COVID-19 vaccines. Public attention in relation to the scandal has centered on the role played by the President of the European Commission, who, as even Dmitry Medvedev, deputy chairman of Russia’s Security Council noted on October 20, “went all out and purchased 4.6 billion(!) COVID-19 vaccine doses from Pfizer pharmaceuticals at a cost of 71 billion (!) euros.” “That is 10 vaccine doses for every EU citizen,” he added.

According to the journal Politico, Ursula von der Leyen has admitted to exchanging text messages with Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla while the EU was negotiating the vaccine purchase contract. Two EU supervisory bodies have already accused her of wrongdoing in relation to the purchase, criticizing the Commission for refusing to provide the documents required for the investigation into the matter to proceed further.

However, the Pfizer purchase is not the first scandal that Ursula von der Leyen has found herself involved in. There was another scandal three years ago, when, shortly after a call from the EU elite to “make the process of electing the EU leadership more democratic,” the members of various different political groupings complained that at the beginning of 2019 the heads of the main EU bodies were selected in closed meetings “under cover of night.” The presidency of the European Commission did not go to the leader of the group winning the most votes in the May 2019 elections, but was instead “handed to” Ursula von der Leyen, as Donald Tusk, evidently satisfied that he had done his duty, informed journalists at the end of a two-week EU summit.

This political backroom deal in which the position was clearly reserved for Ursula von der Leyen took place at a time when the EU was supposedly undergoing a “democratic reform.” Since 2014 the so-called leading candidate procedure has been in effect, for the purpose of selecting a new President of the European Commission. Among other requirements, the procedure requires that the candidates from Europe-wide parties who won the largest numbers of votes in European Parliament elections should be given priority when selecting the President of the European Commission.

The reservation of the post for Ursula von der Leyen, the then German Minister of Defense, was highly controversial at the time, even in her native Germany, both among politicians and within the expert community. For example, Markus Söder, at the time head of the Christian Democratic Union, described his views to the DPA press Agency as follows: “Manfred Weber would have been a legitimate President of the European Commission, his election would have been democratic. It is a pity that democracy failed, and the winner was chosen in a behind-the-scenes deal.” The heads of the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD)-led coalition, in government at the time, also opposed her nomination to the most senior post in the EU. “The decision to award the presidency of the European Commission to the Minister of Defense undoes all the efforts that have been made to strengthen democracy in Europe, take into account citizens’ interests and support the role of the European Parliament,” the SPD leaders claimed in a statement.

Significantly, at the time Ursula von der Leyen did not even take part in the election campaign, did not stand as a candidate in the European elections, and was probably most known for her anti-Russian position and her unquestioning support for Washington. It was most likely that support that played the key role in bringing about her nomination as President of the European Commission.

So, one may ask, what did Ursula von der Leyen do to achieve the honor of being given the post she now occupies? She is the daughter of Ernst Albrecht, a high-ranking politician in the Christian Democratic Union (CDU), and between 1988 and 1992 she worked as an assistant doctor in the gynecological department of Hanover Medical School. However, in 2016 Hanover Medical School checked her doctoral thesis for plagiarism, and noted its “obvious shortcomings.”

Having raised seven children, she is often informally referred to in her native country as “the mother of Germany.” Her political career began in 1990, when she joined Angela Merkel’s CDU, and in 2005 she was appointed to her first ministerial post, as Minister of Family Affairs and Youth in the Merkel administration. In 2009 she was appointed Minister of Labor and Social Affairs, and in 2013 she became Minister of Defense, a post which she occupied for six years, during which she was involved in regular scandals and responsible for controversial decisions. According to statements by Germany’s three main parties (the Green Party, the Left Party and the Social Democrats), many of the 3,800 contracts concluded during her “management” of the German Armed Forces from 2014 onwards (relating to the restructuring of the Armed Forces and also its IT systems) appear to have been awarded to the “right people,” including relatives and friends, and some contracts may even have involved some form of bribery. Back in 2017 the German newspaper Bild, citing a report by the Federal Audit Office, accused Ursula von der Leyen of being strikingly incompetent during her time as Minister of Defense, when it was revealed that not one German submarine was operational, and less than half of its frigates and tanks and just a third of its military helicopters were in working condition.

With such a “success” record, Ursula von der Leyen was already being seen as a burden on the Armed Forces and the CDU. As, with the elections coming up, there was no suitable free ministerial post she was “nominated” for the presidency of the European Commission – a convenient decision for Germany at the time.

However, as time went by it became clear that the EU could not expect to derive much benefit from her appointment.

For Washington, however, which has no interest in the EU being led by strong politicians following their own line independent of the US, the decision to give Ursula von der Leyen the presidency of the European Commission in 2019 played right into its hands. And as a result she is now promoting the interests, not of European citizens, but of Washington alone, by helping US pharmaceutical companies make huge profits from selling the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine or by providing the US military-industrial complex with millions upon millions of euros in arms orders, paid for by European taxpayers, to support the Kiev regime.

In the present circumstances it will be interesting to see how Ursula von der Leyen’s “career” ends – will she be brought down by the results of investigations into the corruption scandals which she has clearly been involved in, or following demands for her resignation by the European public, who are becoming increasingly critical of her actions…

October 28, 2022 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Corruption, Russophobia | , , , | 1 Comment

US Pretends to be ‘Open to Talks’ With North Korea While Boosting Sanctions

Samizdat – 28.10.2022

Russia and China will continue to jointly address the North Korea issue. The main cause of tensions on the Korean Peninsula is the pressure exerted on the DPRK and the show of force by South Korea and the United States.

Russia remains committed to a joint plan with China for a Korean settlement.

“We will adhere to the agreed position on this issue”, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday at a plenary session of the Valdai Discussion Club.

The Russia-China action plan is based on the principle of reciprocal steps by the United States and the DPRK. These steps could be taken by the United States without damaging its reputation, and on the same basis by DPRK leaders. Moscow and Beijing believe that success in the settlement can only be achieved on the basis of reciprocal movement: action after action, step by step, gradually, and consistently.

At the same time, Moscow and Beijing have repeatedly warned that the formula, according to which North Korea must first completely get rid of its nuclear missile program and only then it will be possible to think about lifting sanctions on the DPRK and ensuring its economic development, is absolutely unsustainable.

“Our roadmap, which we proposed together with China, was that first we should build confidence through mutual meetings, and then we should take some tangible measures, including the suspension of military exercises, tests, and missile launches, and then proceed to negotiations,” Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said earlier, presenting a joint Russia-China plan for a Korean settlement.

The plan was put forward to the two Koreas, the United States, and Japan in the fall of 2019 after three meetings between the US and DPRK leaders in Singapore, Hanoi, and the demilitarized zone in Panmunjom ended inconclusively. These meetings were held on June 12, 2018, February 27-28, 2019, and June 30, 2019, respectively.

When answering experts’ questions at the Valdai Discussion Club related to the Korea issue, Vladimir Putin said that the unwillingness to talk and the absolutely boorish attitude to North Korea’s interests, including in the sphere of security, has led to the DPRK nuclear issue. In an interview with Sputnik, Alexander Zhebin, director of the Center for Korean Studies and member of the Russian Political Science Association, commented on the Russian president’s statements as follows:

“Vladimir Putin was referring to the boorish behavior of the United States, because the US and the DPRK had an agreement at Trump’s meeting with Kim Jong-un in Singapore that Pyongyang would not launch long-range missiles that could reach American territory, and would not test nuclear weapons. The Americans would respond to this, as recorded in the Singapore declaration, by building a new relationship. Instead, the Americans continued to impose more and more sanctions against the DPRK, which means that they have not fulfilled their part of the commitments.”

According to Alexander Zhebin, the US behaves arrogantly towards the DPRK in the UN Security Council as well:

“Each UN Security Council resolution that imposed sanctions on the DPRK stipulated that positive steps by the DPRK to reduce nuclear missile activity must be accompanied by reciprocal steps by those who imposed sanctions and lead to their partial lifting. This has not happened. On the contrary, no matter what the DPRK has done, the US has kept imposing new sanctions, both by Trump and then by Biden.”

Today, instead of negotiations, the US and South Korea are working on scenarios for destroying the top political leadership of the DPRK and the country’s control centers.

“On the one hand, the Americans say they are ready to negotiate with the DPRK at any time, anywhere, and without any conditions. However, at the same time, they have imposed unprecedentedly harsh sanctions on the DPRK and do not intend to lift them. On the contrary, they are obstructing all attempts by China and Russia to reduce the sanctions burden and start a dialog process. In fact, the invitation to negotiations is just talk. Under that guise, the US is implementing a longstanding plan according to which, eventually, the DPRK, under the weight of economic sanctions, will not survive, thus forcing Kim Jong-un to surrender.

They are not hiding the fact that large-scale military exercises carried out by the US and South Korea are used to practice the elimination of the DPRK’s top political leadership and the country’s control centers. The scale of the recent maneuvers is simply off the chart. 240 American and South Korean aircraft, including the latest F-35 stealth fighters, have been deployed off the coast of North Korea. This cannot but cause serious concern to the DPRK leadership, since everything is happening near its borders. The DPRK is very much concerned about its security,” Alexander Zhebin stressed.

The DPRK’s missile launches are a response to US and South Korean military drills, which constantly press Pyongyang to demonstrate its power, Jin Xiangdong, a researcher at Xiamen University’s School of International Relations, said in an interview with Sputnik :

“Since coming to power, the new South Korean government has conducted a series of military exercises near the Korean Peninsula. The DPRK has responded by launching ballistic missiles. The main problem with the situation on the peninsula is that the new South Korean government is constantly putting pressure on North Korea and demonstrating its power. China’s position on the Korean Peninsula issue is consistent and clear. China defends the maintenance of peace and stability on the peninsula, denuclearization on the Korean Peninsula, and the resolution of issues through dialog and consultations. Meanwhile, in general, the solution to the Korean Peninsula problem is still complicated.”

The Joint Chiefs of Staff of the South Korean Armed Forces said that North Korea fired two short-range ballistic missiles toward the Sea of Japan on Friday. The launches took place on the last day of South Korea’s Hoguk military exercises, which began on October 17. These maneuvers featured a large-scale amphibious landing exercise near the city of Pohang on the coast of the Sea of Japan.

On October 31, the Republic of Korea and the United States will launch large-scale joint air exercises. The high intensity and scale of the drills provoke growing tensions in Northeast Asia. The US threatening to give a strong response to a possible nuclear test by the DPRK has aggravated the situation.

October 28, 2022 Posted by | Deception, Economics, Militarism, Progressive Hypocrite | , , , | Leave a comment

The Ukraine war of words that heralds ethnic cleansing

By Dr Gregory Slysz | TCW Defending Freedom | October 28, 2022

As The Ukrainian forces and their Western backers celebrate their recent military advance, the fate of ethnic Russians in the reclaimed territories looks bleak now that local and national leaders have declared a reckoning against those whom they consider to be collaborators and traitors.

It’s a policy that originates from the early stages of the conflict based on a law passed in March that threatened anyone who co-operated with the occupying Russian authorities with up to 15 years of imprisonment together with the confiscation of property. Hitherto there have been many arrests of those accused of pro-Russian collaboration, including the leader of Ukraine’s official parliamentary opposition Viktor Medvedchuk, and assassinations of officials such as Alexei Kovalev, deputy head of the military and civil administration in the Kherson region. But as the Ukrainian forces wrest back territory from Russia, a wide net is being cast against alleged collaborators that extends well beyond officials to include teacherssocial media warriors and victims of unsubstantiated claims of snitches, shedding light on the intentions of Ukrainian authorities in the unlikely event of total victory.

Ukraine is a culturally heterogenous population in which linguistic affiliation is complex, being governed by both cultural and social situations.  At least 17 per cent of Ukrainians claim Russian heritage, with about 14 per cent declaring Russian as their main language and a further 17 per cent Russo-Ukrainian bilingualism, with an unknown number opting to converse in a hybrid Surzhyk dialect. Russian speakers are overwhelmingly concentrated in the eastern and southern regions of the country. It’s a situation, moreover, that has reflected the electoral geography of the country of both parliamentary and presidential elections with the eastern and southern parts of the country exhibiting close affinities with Russia.

Starting as a reasonable initiative at nation-building that intended to correct the inequalities of institutional Russification of the Soviet era, language policy came to be weaponised by nationalist political forces that sought to use it to marginalise Russian culture. Although a cultural reset was inevitable after the collapse of the Soviet Union to redress years of Russification, its initial steps were measured, such as the Law of Languages of 1989, which extended legislative protections to Russian as well as other languages. For Ukraine’s increasingly influential nationalists, overwhelmingly located in the West of the country, the Law was intolerable and unsurprisingly fell victim to the Maidan coup of 2014, that replaced the Russophile President Viktor Yanukovich with Petro Poroshenko.

While its provisions were maintained by Ukraine’s subsequent leadership, following international condemnation of its revocation, the decision of the Constitutional Court to deem the Law unconstitutional was viewed by the Russian minority as a sign of a broader assault on Ukraine’s Russian heritage and served to fuel separatist sentiment in the Crimea and the Donbas. It also played into the hands of Vladimir Putin who could now claim to be the champion of Ukraine’s oppressed Russian speakers, by military means if necessary. Such fears were not unwarranted as in 2019 a new language law sought to end the hitherto ad hoc implementation of existing legislation and subject transgressors to severe fines. Poroshenko, who was campaigning for re-election, weaponised Ukraine’s language policy with his election slogan ‘Army, faith, language’, declaring that ‘the only opinion that we weren’t going to account for [in drafting the legislation] is the opinion of Moscow’. Salt was further rubbed into the wounds of the third of the country which rejected it by its being signed off by the Speaker of Parliament, Andrei Parubiy, a former activist in the neo-Nazi Social-National Party, who warned chillingly that ‘those people who try to revise the language law . . . will soon feel the whole anger of the Ukrainian people’. Remaining loopholes were filled in January 2022, just before Russia’s military incursion, which for instance compelled Russian language print media to produce Ukrainian translations for all publications in a move that de facto targeted Russian for discrimination.

To indigenous Russian speakers, such rhetoric marked the creation of an ethnic state in which they were not welcome. The escalation of the war in 2022 seemed to confirm their worst fears as not only did Russian become ‘the language of the enemy’ but things Russian, political parties, music, literature were officially shunned, banned or marginalised in a policy that hitherto had been executed only by the far right nationalists of Lviv City Council in West Ukraine. Whereas then the likes of Canadian and British ambassadors joined Moscow in condemning such action as ‘just plain dumb’ and intolerant, now such nationwide ‘de-Russification’ initiatives were met with silence.

International opinion recognised Ukraine’s language policy as conflict-bearing due to its increasingly divisive and discriminatory nature. The scrapping of minority language provisions by Ukraine’s Constitutional Court in 2014, for instance, raised concerns in the European Parliament which deemed it as ‘undermining any notions of justice, freedom, civilisation, progress and democracy’ and called for the EU Commission to ‘condemn the action of the Ukrainian Parliament and the nationalistic attacks on minority communities in Ukraine’. The 2019 law came under similar criticism from the Venice Commission, the Council of Europe’s advisory body on constitutional affairs, which declared that it threatened to become ‘a source of inter-ethnic tensions within Ukraine’. It reiterated its conclusion following the passing of the January 2022 Law, noting that ‘historical oppression of Ukrainian . . . may lead to the adoption of positive measures aimed at promoting Ukrainian, but this cannot justify depriving the Russian language and its speakers of the protection granted to other languages’.

Both the intra-parliamentary brawls and street standoffs between Ukrainian and Russian speakers during the passage of the language legislation were chilling portents of what was come. Although the escalation of the war in 2022 has seen some ethnic Ukrainian Russian speakers distance themselves from ‘the language of the enemy’ and embrace Ukrainian as their main language, it has also seen ethnic Russians fortify their Russian identity. While this in itself has demonstrated the complexity and malleability of identity in Ukraine, it has also reinforced pre-existing cultural fissures, leaving ethnic Russians with no option other than to embrace Mother Russia as their homeland.

While the conflict in the Donbas since 2014 rendered reconciliation between the Ukrainian authorities and the Russian minority problematic, as the failure of the Minsk agreement testifies, the escalation of the conflict has entrenched pre-war hatreds. With the national conversation decisively turning against the reintegration of Russian culture and language into Ukraine’s social fabric, it is difficult to see how a status quo ante bellum with even rudimentary cultural and linguistic protections for ethnic Russians is possible were the Ukrainian state reconstituted within its pre-war borders. In fact, everything points towards mass retribution and ethnic cleansing on a scale not witnessed in Europe since the Second World War, in a scenario that is likely to overshadow the grim events of the conflict itself. Ukraine’s Secretary of the National Security and Defence Council, certainly didn’t mince his words on a recent Ukrainian talk show in calling for the ‘complete disappearance of the Russian language from our land’ in what sounded like incitement to ethnic cleansing.

Nothwithstanding the difficulty such actions would present for social reconstruction, the questionable legality of extra-judicial killings of officials and political persecution of ‘collaborators’ threatens to draw attention to atrocities committed by Ukrainian paramilitary forces during the Second World War against Russians, Jews, Poles and other minorities. These crimes, together with the ritualistic celebrations by Ukraine’s highest political authorities of those who perpetrated them like nationalist leader and Nazi collaborator, Stepan Bandera, have been conveniently whitewashed so as to not tarnish the image of a virtuous Ukraine that has been carefully cultivated over the past few months. The sources which once regularly condemned Ukraine for not only celebrating wartime collaboration but also tolerating a revival of neo-Nazi paramilitarism now declare similar condemnation by Russia as hostile propaganda. A Ukraine seen to be persecuting minorities again would be a propaganda disaster for its Western backers.

Dividing Ukraine’s population into ‘the people’ and ‘the rest’ where the latter were made to feel subordinate in their ancestral lands to the former was always going to lead to conflict. Yet just as wise counsel of the likes of George Kennan, Henry Kissinger and Zbigniew Brzezinski warned of the grave risks of Nato’s expansion to Russia’s borders, so warnings came aplenty of the dangers of a divisive language policy. To Ukraine’s detriment, however, neither was heeded and now a reckoning against ‘the rest’ will be as useless in knitting back together shattered communities as the pre-war language policy was in solving peaceful coexistence between Russian and Ukrainian in a single public space.

October 28, 2022 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , | 3 Comments

US shuns limits on nuclear weapon use

Samizdat | October 28, 2022

The Pentagon revealed on Thursday in its long-awaited National Defense Strategy (NDS) report that given the growing national security threats posed against the US and its allies, Washington must leave the door open to such options as a nuclear first strike and use of nuclear weapons to prevent non-nuclear attacks. That conclusion was approved by the White House after the Pentagon’s thorough review of “no first use” and “sole purpose” nuclear policies.

“Those approaches would result in an unacceptable level of risk, in light of the range of non-nuclear capabilities being developed and fielded by competitors that could inflict strategic-level damage to the United States and its allies and partners,” the NDS said. “Some allies and partners are particularly vulnerable to attacks with non-nuclear means that could produce devastating effects.”

Biden pledged while running for president in 2020 that he would work to narrow the potential uses of America’s nuclear weaponry. “The sole purpose of the US nuclear arsenal should be deterring — and if necessary, retaliating against — a nuclear attack. As president, I will work to put that belief into practice, in consultation with our allies and military.”

The decision to instead reject limits on use of nuclear weapons comes amid rising tensions with Russia and China. Beijing is investing heavily in expansion and modernization of its nuclear capabilities, the Pentagon said. “By the 2030s, the United States will, for the first time in its history, face two major nuclear powers as strategic competitors and potential adversaries.”

Washington won’t use or threaten to use nuclear weapons against non-nuclear states that are party to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, according to the NDS report. “For all other states, there remains a narrow range of contingencies in which US nuclear weapons may still play a role in deterring attacks that have a strategic effect against the United States or its allies and partners.”

The report labeled China as the No. 1 national security threat against the US, despite rising tensions with Moscow over the Ukraine conflict. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin said China is “the only competitor out there with both the intent to reshape the international order and, increasingly, the power to do so.”

The US remains the only nation to have ever used nuclear weapons against another country – the atomic bombs dropped on Japan in August 1945.

October 28, 2022 Posted by | Militarism, War Crimes | | 1 Comment

The BBC’s Hurricane Unreality Checked

By Paul Homewood |October 26, 2022

I have collaborated with Net Zero Watch to produce this video on hurricanes.

October 28, 2022 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Science and Pseudo-Science, Video | | Leave a comment