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US agencies working directly with Big Tech to police Internet content

By Drago Bosnic | November 1, 2022

In the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks, the United States effectively became a police state. Government control and direct surveillance, the legality of which remains questionable at best, has been the norm ever since. With the advent of new technologies and the expansion of the so-called Big Tech (Alphabet/Google, Amazon, Apple, Meta/Facebook, etc.), the government managed to acquire unprecedented access to the personal information of not just its own citizens, but hundreds of millions of others around the world as well.

For decades, Big Tech denied any involvement with US agencies, despite it being common knowledge for the vast majority of users. However, the level of cooperation and integration between the US government and the aforementioned Internet giants (all of which are private companies) has been truly staggering.

Back in August, while on the Joe Rogan podcast, Meta/Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg admitted that the FBI worked with the company to suppress so-called “Russian propaganda” shortly before the Hunter Biden laptop scandal was published by the New York Post. However, new reports now indicate that this Big Tech-US government collusion goes much deeper, according to the leaked documents acquired by The Intercept. Their investigation revealed that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is “quietly broadening control over speech it considers dangerous.” Years of internal DHS memos, emails, and documents — obtained via leaks and an ongoing lawsuit, as well as public documents — illustrate an expansive effort by the agency to influence tech platforms.

According to the report, the work, much of which remains unknown to the American public, came into clearer view earlier this year when DHS announced a new “Disinformation Governance Board”, a panel designed to police misinformation (false information spread unintentionally), disinformation (false information spread intentionally), and malinformation (factual information shared, typically out of context, with harmful intent) that allegedly threatens US interests. While the board was widely ridiculed, immediately scaled back, and then shut down within a few months, other initiatives are underway as DHS pivots to monitoring social media now that its original mandate — the war on terror — has been wound down.

Behind closed doors, and through pressure on private platforms, the US government has used its power to try to shape online discourse. According to meeting minutes and other records appended to a lawsuit filed by Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt, a Republican who is also running for Senate, discussions have ranged from the scale and scope of government intervention in online discourse to the mechanics of streamlining takedown requests for false or intentionally misleading information, The Intercept reports.

During a March 2022 meeting, FBI official Laura Dehmlow warned that the “threat of subversive information on social media” could undermine support for the US government – stressing that “we need a media infrastructure that is held accountable.” Interestingly, Dehmlow’s insistence on preventing the fall of support for the US government is clearly a priority over telling the truth. What’s more, the US agencies seem to have a strict bias towards certain power structures within the US establishment, primarily those dominated by the DNC neoliberals and partially the GOP neoconservatives. This was particularly noticeable during Donald Trump’s presidency, when undermining the 45th US president through disinformation and conspiracy theories such as the alleged “Russian election meddling” wasn’t seen as a “threat to our democracy”.

Expectedly, the Big Tech companies denied involvement. Twitter told The Intercept that they “do not coordinate with other entities when making content moderation decisions” and that they “independently evaluate content in line with the Twitter Rules.” However, the claim doesn’t seem very convincing given the sheer amount of coordinated efforts by the Big Tech companies (seemingly unrelated, as they are all officially separate private entities) to suppress so-called MDM (misinformation, disinformation, malinformation). Having every Big Tech corporation banning or restricting millions of users in a virtually identical manner can only be described as a cooperative effort directed by the same authority. The Intercept report indicates that this authority is none other than the US government itself.

The issue at hand is the fact that various interest groups within the US establishment are controlling what hundreds of millions of people get to see as the “undeniable truth”, or worse yet, billions when taking the global scale into account. Whether it’s the election meddling designed to push their preferred candidates or promoting wars around the world, these entities should be denied such a tremendous amount of power.

The so-called “struggle against MDM (misinformation, disinformation, malinformation)” has become the No. 1 pretext to suppress any information deemed as such. This has gone so far that private companies are now fining their customers, with PayPal deducting $2500 from anyone’s account for “spreading MDM”. It’s clear that such a level of control is quite uncomfortable, to say the least. The question is, where does it stop?

Drago Bosnic is an independent geopolitical and military analyst.

November 1, 2022 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Deception, Timeless or most popular | , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

On The Worship Of Sacred Cows

The strange death of real journalism

Health Advisory & Recovery Team | November 1, 2022

One of the extraordinary things about the past few years is the extent to which data which very obviously suggests one thing has been reinterpreted to suggest something else, merely to fit the “approved” narrative.

For no subject is this more apparent than that of the miracle covid injections. As a society we strained to attribute as many deaths as possible to “covid” — however unlikely they seemed to be connected. When discussing the vaccines, however, many defenders of the covid-cult seem willing and able to twist themselves into ludicrous contortions in an attempt to explain away any observations which don’t fully support the “safe and effective” (and necessary) official narrative.

This week has actually seen a flurry of such articles, of which the three below are just a selection.

Firstly, Canadian TV News excitedly reported on a study published in JAMA which found that the more severe the symptoms after mRNA vaccination, the higher the antibody levels generated.

This is, of course no surprise whatsoever, though is of questionable relevance given that even the CDC has said that there are “no correlates of protection” in terms of antibody levels. This is amply illustrated by the fact that despite extremely high Spike protein antibody levels in the population, seasonal waves of covid infections still appear to come and go in highly vaccinated countries, and triple (or more) vaccinated people still seem to be getting severely ill and even dying from covid.

The authors, all US clinicians or scientists, conclude their paper thus:

“In conclusion, these findings support reframing post vaccination symptoms as signals of vaccine effectiveness and reinforce guidelines for vaccine boosters in older adults.”

So, despite a complete lack of evidence for the clinical relevance of the raised antibody levels, they’re essentially saying “tell them that the more ill you are, the better it is working”.

Aside from the dubious ethics of this approach given the lack of supportive evidence of clinical relevance, this would of course discourage recipients from reporting adverse events, further compromising proper safety surveillance and signal detection in relation to these products, not that regulators appear to have actually performed any such useful analysis.

Lest those NOT experiencing side-effects be concerned about a lack of protection, CTVNews was of course happy to reassure them, apparently unaware of the contradiction with their main “message”, stating that:

But even though some people may have small, localized side effects or no symptoms at all, the vaccine still elicits robust immune responses in them too. Nearly all study participants exhibited a positive antibody response after completing a two-dose Pfizer/BioNTech or Moderna vaccine series.

Our second example of delusional thinking this week is from the UK’s Daily Telegraph. Their staff writer Sarah Knapton, who has fairly reliably been against the lockdowns and other restrictions, still cannot bring herself to question the “vaccine is our saviour” story, as evidenced in this bizarre piece, claiming, “Covid vaccines appear to work better for active people… suggesting that hard lockdowns were counterproductive.”

It is of course well known that fit and healthy and regularly active people were always at much lower risk from covid and stopping people exercising during lockdowns was just one of the more ridiculous features of such policies.

Hence it is difficult to see why this observation by a researcher in South Africa should come as a surprise to anyone:

“In terms of policy, retrospectively we can say those hard lockdowns were counterproductive from an immune point of view, and trying to facilitate exercise is beneficial.”

The paper’s authors, writing in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, conclude that:

“Public health messaging should encourage physical activity as a simple, cost-effective way of enhancing vaccine effectiveness to mitigate the risk of severe Covid-19 illness requiring hospital admission.”

So, apparently, the reason exercise works in reducing covid mortality is by “enhancing vaccine effectiveness”? It seems hard to believe that anyone could fail to see the ridiculousness in that conclusion. However, Sarah clearly doesn’t want to miss an opportunity to promote the vaccines, hence, combining her disdain for lockdowns with her cult-like devotion to the vaccines, she gives her piece the title:

Covid vaccine study finding contradicts lockdown rule

Later, she states that:

A new study by South African researchers has found that people who got the most exercise responded better to the vaccine, with fewer ending up in hospital following the jab.

So basically: lockdowns are bad as they reduce vaccine effectiveness.

You really cannot make this stuff up (well, apart from the fact that some people are making this stuff up).

Finally, this week also saw the publication of a major analysis of the waning over time of vaccine efficacy (for both Astrazeneca and Pfizer mRNA products) in the United Kingdom in the International Journal of Epidemiology.

This was a “target trial”, which seeks to emulate a “real” trial by identifying naturally occuring exposure groups. The study is notable for its size, covering 12.9m people.

Here is not the place to delve into the results in detail, except to mention that within the period of the study vaccine efficacy became negative (meaning an increased risk over the unvaccinated) for deaths and hospitalisation within just a few months of injection for all doses except the 2nd dose of the Pfizer product.

The results are summarised here:

The curious reader may ask why they are combining deaths and hospitalizations into a single metric; if there had actually been any reduction specifically in deaths (or the waning for protection against death had been less), the authors would surely have highlighted that.

The next point about this is that when they say the vaccine efficacy remained above zero “throughout” what they mean is “throughout the period observed”, which was stated to be 98 days (although in the graphs the data appears to extend approximately another week or so beyond that).

It can clearly be seen from the graph below that efficacy is tending consistently downwards (as the RR, or relative risk, trends upwards towards 1), and by eye one can estimate that it too would turn negative after around 120 days, or 4 months.

No mention of this is made in the paper.

The final point to make is that in attempting to explain away this phenomenon, the authors claim that:

We believe that the most likely explanation for negative VE/rVE is that vaccination caused recipients to believe they were protected, leading them to change their behaviour in ways that increase their chance of contracting the infection.

Aside from there being no evidence for this assertion (or “belief” as they quite rightly call it), it is to be noted that most of the severe illness is seen within the elderly and frail, and it is hard to imagine these people deciding suddenly to start partying after vaccination.

In fact, a notable feature of the vaccination campaign was that, in the elderly at least, the level of fear and apprehension about the virus appeared to be largely unchanged afterwards.

Moreover, for the authors’ explanation to have any credence, the vaccinees’ confidence would have had to have increased over time since injection, to account for the direction of travel of vaccine efficacy, whereas surely the opposite would seem more likely.

Stop Press:

Sarah Knapton has written a further piece for the Daily Telegraph. The headline and byline are below. The word “vaccine” does not appear anywhere in the article, despite the plethora of published papers now linking the mRNA vaccines to cardiac issues.

November 1, 2022 Posted by | Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular | , | 2 Comments

Rumble says it won’t move its policy goalposts to appease France’s censorship demands

By Christina Maas | Reclaim The Net | November 1, 2022

Growing video platform Rumble, based in the US, has refused to cave to ’s demands to censor Russian news sources such as RT France and Sputnik.

Rumble has instead chosen to pull its services from France rather than comply with the order.

“The French Government has demanded that Rumble @rumblevideo block Russian news sources. Like @elonmusk, I won’t move our goal posts for any foreign government,” Rumble CEO Chris Pavlovski tweeted.

In a statement, Rumble said, “the French Government demanded that we remove certain Russian news sources from Rumble.”

Rumble outlined its commitment to free speech, adding, “As part of our mission to restore a free and open internet, we have committed not to move the goalposts on our content policies. Users with unpopular views are free to access our platform on the same terms as our millions of other users.”

Rumble said that it was disabling access to users in France while they look into challenging the legality of the government’s demands.

Journalist Glenn Greenwald, who has a show on Rumble, weighed in on the decision. “If Rumble obeyed France’s censorship order – like Big Tech firms often do – it’d mean Americans could only access voices and views which foreign governments (EU, China, Iran, etc.) permitted to be aired.”

Several months ago, the European Union (EU) imposed sanctions on , including banning RT and Sputnik from being broadcast in member countries. The two news outlets were accused of spreading Russian propaganda about the invasion of .

The channels are not allowed on television or online in EU countries. However, they have been circumventing the sanctions through online platforms that are not based in the EU.

Last month, France’s President Emmanuel Macron acknowledged the difficulties in blocking RT and Sputnik from the country, as French citizens still had online ways to access the content.

“We’re using the informational weapon and Russia was doing it even before by spreading propaganda on social networks, through propaganda channels that we have cut off on our soil but still continue to find channels to broadcast,” Macron said in an interview broadcast by France 2.

Rumble describes itself as a high-growth neutral video platform with independent infrastructure that is “immune to cancel culture” – and a platform with a mission of restoring the internet to its roots.

November 1, 2022 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance | , | 1 Comment

Clinton demands $1 million from Trump

Samizdat | November 1, 2022

Former US presidential candidate Hillary Clinton filed court papers on Monday in a bid to compel Donald Trump to pay her more than $1 million. According to the motion, she is demanding compensation for money spent fighting a lawsuit that alleged she had engaged in a conspiracy to undermine Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign by claiming he colluded with Russia.

Clinton’s legal team described Trump’s civil action, which was dismissed earlier this year, as frivolous and “a political stunt,” according to a filing in a federal court in Florida. Lawyers argued that it should result in sanctions in the form of $1.06 million that would be used to cover legal fees and costs.

“A reasonable attorney would never have filed this suit, let alone continued to prosecute it after multiple defendants’ motions to dismiss highlighted its fundamental and incurable defects,” Clinton’s attorneys wrote.

In March, Trump filed a lawsuit alleging that Clinton, the Democratic National Committee (DNC), US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan, and a number of other people had entered a malicious conspiracy to accuse his campaign of colluding with Russia in an effort to harm his electoral chances. At the time, Trump claimed the rumors had cost him over $24 million.

However, in September Judge Donald Middlebrooks, who was appointed by Bill Clinton, the former US President and Hillary Clinton’s husband, threw out the lawsuit, arguing that it was nothing more than a “political manifesto.” He also noted that Trump filed the suit too late and failed to provide evidence for the alleged conspiracy. The former president has appealed the ruling.

Commenting on Clinton’s move, Trump’s attorney Alina Habba, denied the allegations, describing them as politically motivated. “This motion, conveniently filed one week prior to election day, is nothing more than a thinly-veiled attempt to score political points,” she said in a written statement, as quoted by the Hill.

In 2016, the United States accused Russia of interference in the presidential election to harm Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton and boost the Republican candidacy of Donald Trump, an allegation which has been vehemently denied by Moscow. US authorities also investigated whether Trump and his campaign colluded with Russia, but failed to find evidence to bring any conspiracy or coordination charges.

November 1, 2022 Posted by | Deception, Russophobia | , | 3 Comments

The Pentagon Is Neither Woke Nor Based

By Laurie Calhoun | The Libertarian Institute | November 1, 2022

The U.S. military has in recent times been making a big show of its “wokeness,” not only by changing the names of institutions to comply with the demands of race activists who wish to expunge from history all traces of the Confederacy, but also in its affirmation and encouragement of persons who lead alternative lifestyles. For nearly twenty years, beginning in 1993, the military maintained a “don’t ask, don’t tell,” policy on homosexuality. Since 2011, however, openly gay persons have been permitted to serve in the armed forces.

Given this context, some were surprised to learn that the Department of Defense has explicitly specified that transgender women must register for the Selective Service, while transgender men need not. The official website states:

Selective Service bases the registration requirement on gender assigned at birth and not on gender identity or on gender reassignment. Individuals who are born male and changed their gender to female are still required to register. Individuals who are born female and changed their gender to male are not required to register.

Through the Selective Service and Training Act, registration of men was first required in 1940 so as to make it possible for the government to locate potential soldiers in the event of a military draft. The law was amended as the Elston Act (aka the Selective Service Act) in 1948, and is still in place nearly seventy-five years later. There has been no draft called since the U.S. military intervention in Vietnam, from 1964 to 1973, but the option remains open to the war-making authority, the executive branch of the government, at the pinnacle of which stands the politician who managed to be elected as president. Since 1940, males eighteen years of age have been required by law to register with the Selective Service; females have not.

Traditionalists (and students of biology) stand firm in their belief that the possession of a Y chromosome in every cell of one’s body properly identifies a human being as a biological male, whatever his lifestyle choices and preferences may be, and whatever surgical changes he may undertake to remove or alter body parts. Laypersons who in the era of “woke” dare to make such claims, what seems to many to be a matter of common sense, have been known to be denounced as TERFs (trans-exclusionary radical feminists) by angry mobs online. Will the U.S. military now be subjected to similar barrages of anger?

Despite the military’s “woke” rhetoric regarding race and critical race theory, and its accommodating policies toward homosexual persons, it does look as though the Department of Defense has boldly affirmed the reality of biological sex, through its explicit assertion that a biological male is and always will be a biological male, even if he chooses to pump his body with estrogen, have his genitals surgically removed, wear makeup and don miniskirts. I include the latter two attributes because of the many trans-caricatures of femininity currently on display, as exemplified by Dylan Mulvaney, a twenty-five-year-old trans-activist who on day 222 of claiming “womanhood” was granted an interview with President Biden. Many of the very public, and often melodramatic, displays of transgenderism found not only on TikTok but also in commercial advertisements reduce women to the ditzy, superficial, and degrading stereotypes of decades past. If we are to believe transwomen such as Dylan Mulvaney, the “gentler sex” spends the bulk of their creative energy and time in endeavors such as painting their nails and shopping for new clothes.

In this somewhat astonishing cultural development, men who transition are thus allowed to indulge in outright misogyny, by overtly ridiculing women through conducting themselves in ways reminiscent of and entirely analogous to the racist portrayal of African Americans by white persons in blackface. Transwomen have also been permitted to compete alongside biological females in sports, with the predictable outcome that girls and women are being denied what would otherwise be their opportunity for success in athletics, and as a result do not enjoy the recognition, awards and scholarships which some of them surely deserve for their prowess.

Whatever sins of sexism transwomen may be permitted, they will not, the Pentagon has made clear, be able to evade the military draft. Yes, despite the reigning insanity on the transgender issue, propelled forward by misogynistic ad campaigns by companies such as ULTA, the U.S. military’s Selective Service registration policy is holding the line: a female is and always will be a biological female, even if she chooses to have some of the muscle in her leg transformed into a prosthetic penis, undergo a double mastectomy, and suffuse her body with testosterone in order to bulk up her muscles, lower her voice, and be able to grow a beard. The military powers that be have sided with traditionalists in asserting that, no matter how many surgeries they may undergo, “transmen are not really men,” and “transwomen are not really women,” because the former lack Y chromosomes, while the latter do not.

The Selective Service statement may look like a “gotcha” to those keen on calling a halt to the biology-denying madness. But just as earlier efforts to appear “feminist” arguably betrayed only the Pentagon’s concern to increase flagging enrollment, I strongly suspect that this bold proclamation of the reality of biological sex is part of a broader effort to force Selective Service registration upon every person, whether or not they possess a Y chromosome. By broaching the question of biological sex at all, the reignited debate about the requirement upon men, but not women, will likely be used to provoke lawmakers to “update” the requirement. It is obviously to the Pentagon’s advantage—and indeed, I am suggesting, it is their intent—to double the number of persons required to register and thus be prepared for future conscription in one of the many wars brewing on the horizon. Perversely enough, it will be yet another show of “wokeness” when the administration begins to insist that fairness and equity require that all persons, no matter their gender, be treated the same. In other words, the Pentagon is laying the groundwork for this sort of argument:

If biological males are required to register for Selective Service, then, because biological females are of equal value and worth to males, they, too, should be required to register. To hold any other position would be to claim that the sexes are not equal, to deny that females have the same worth and value as do males.

Lawmakers seem unlikely to abolish the Selective Service requirement for the same reason that they rubber stamp every single new military budget, prioritizing war over all other things. Indeed, Republican and Democratic lawmakers may disagree on every other possible allocation of taxpayers’ funds, but they form a united, virtually impenetrable front, the War Party duopoly, in supporting any and every initiative characterized, however implausibly, as a matter of national defense.

The Selective Service registration requirement has remained in place for so many decades because it is facilely depicted as a matter of necessary preparedness for the eventuality of conflicts such as World War II. But because every military intervention abroad is portrayed as a matter of defense—even the ongoing border dispute between Ukraine and Russia has been cast as a necessary defense of “democracy”—there is little reason to believe that lawmakers would agree to abolish the Selective Service registration requirement when it comes time to decide whether or not to include females alongside males. Instead, so-called liberals will be seduced by pseudo-feminist and “woke” rhetoric to insist much more enthusiastically than their “based” colleagues that the requirement be expanded, not abolished. Such unwitting dupes will no doubt be enlisted to help disseminate the Pentagon propaganda line according to which the affirmation of equality of all persons mandates that everyone of military age be required to register.

The Pentagon has been plagued by dwindling voluntary enlistments ever since the illegal invasion of Iraq in 2003. A series of atrocities committed by troops and private contractors throughout the “Global War on Terror” no doubt exacerbated the problem, by progressively chipping away whatever illusions of nobility prospective enlistees may have formerly associated with soldiering. Evidence that the recruitment crisis remains pressing in 2022 includes tweets from the Selective Service Twitter account (@SSS_gov), such as the one from October 7, in which parents are informed that even if they have only one son, he must register for the Selective Service.

On its face, this seems a bizarre announcement to make out of the blue. Except that it is not out of the blue, for all of these ploys are, again, plausibly part of the Pentagon’s gambit to increase the number of persons available for the wars which they are actively planning and fomenting, whether with Russia, China, Iran, the interminable “Global War on Terror” throughout the Middle East and Africa, or—why not?—yet another deadly meddling effort in Haiti.

As evidence of the ultimate aim of the Selective Service transgender policy, some of Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin’s recent proclamations have been telling:

While I am encouraged to see a decrease in the suicide rate in our Active Component, we recognize we have more work to do. Every death by suicide is a tragedy that impacts our people, our military units, and our readiness.

Patriotism knows no gender, and neither does courage. Men and women hear the same call to serve our great country, and American women have always, always answered.

The U.S. military recently announced that it will pay for the travel of female troops who wish to terminate a pregnancy but are not located in a state where (post-Dodd) abortions are legal and therefore can be undertaken safely. It may sound cynical to suggest that females who carry their pregnancies to term, too, diminish the number of active troops, but in view of the scandalous epidemic of military rapes and sexual abuse endured by female enlistees in all branches of the armed forces in recent decades (see The Invisible Wara 2013 documentary film directed by Kirby Dick), it is not at all an implausible explanation for the accommodating stance of the DoD toward women seeking abortions.

Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin’s exuberant pro-war tweets regularly appear in my Twitter feed, and other users may have noticed in recent months an upsurge in the appearance of tweets from accounts not being followed. Significantly, these are not paid advertisements, but texts which are prioritized for dissemination and are all connected to the government in some way. Along with Austin, examples include NATO administrators, EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, Samantha Power (of USAID, which is well known to be a CIA front), among other figure heads, up to and including Secretary of State Antony Blinken and the president himself, Joe Biden. War is the media topic of the day, but during the COVID crisis, I recall having been “treated” to a non-stop stream of tweets by vaccine entrepreneur Bill Gates—until I muted him.

Any number of less well known propagandists now appear to be paid specifically to promote war, and their slogans and exhortations also pop up in “the latest tweets” more frequently than even paid advertising. Meanwhile, accounts known to promote “dangerous” antiwar messages are shadowbanned, with tweets not even included in the feeds of their very own followers. (Anecdotally, I have determined from the analytics bar that Twitter allows my own tweets to appear in the feed of twenty-two persons.) Accounts with an antiwar “bias,” as the Disinformation Governance Board might characterize it, are capped so as to limit the number of followers. And of course anyone with an antiwar blog or website needs only to attempt to locate its articles through Google search to see how difficult they are to find.

All of this is to say that the government has commandeered social media as a vehicle for the promotion of its own propaganda. Governments have always attempted to control the narrative, but this trend has become especially glaring in the years since the ratification of the Smith-Mundt Modernization Act, which lifted restrictions against propagandizing U.S. citizens by the government itself using (what else?) taxpayers’ own money to do so. In fact, that the U.S. government has exerted influence over Twitter is not all that surprising, given what we already knew about Facebook and YouTube.

The purchase of Twitter by self-proclaimed free speech champion Elon Musk may or may not improve the situation. It is worth remembering the recent report that the U.S. government intended to investigate Musk, which appeared shortly after he made the “mistake” of suggesting that the Ukraine-Russia conflict should be settled through negotiation. Musk has been providing internet access to the Ukrainian government through his Starlink company, but he crossed the MIC line when he dared to opine that negotiation might be preferable to nuclear holocaust. If Musk’s takeover of Twitter was greenlighted by the U.S. government, then it may well have been as a result of some sort of accommodation on his part.

In any case, regardless of what happens to Twitter, the Pentagon’s propaganda machine is so vast and powerful that self-styled liberals have already been swindled into supporting the allocation of massive funding to a border dispute—over a line drawn thirty years ago by a small committee of men—between a non-nuclear and a nuclear power. This infusion of billions of dollars into the conflict between Ukraine and Russia serves no purpose beyond lining the pockets of war profiteers, while diminishing rather than enhancing the security of those who foot the bill, by increasing the likelihood of a devastating conflict between two nuclear powers. It is striking that so-called progressives, who claim to care about the domestic problems currently faced by their constituents—the cost of healthcare, the housing and homelessness crisis, the drug overdose epidemic, elevated grocery and gas prices caused by inflation, etc.—have signed off on bills to print and dole out billions of dollars to Ukraine rather than address the pressing problems with which the nation itself is undeniably beset.

A recent letter by thirty lawmakers, members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus led by Representative Pramila Jayapal, urged President Biden to pursue a negotiated solution to the Ukraine-Russia crisis and thus appeared to offer a glimmer of hope, albeit tardily. After six months of silence on the issue, it seemed that progressives were finally going to act as progressives, perhaps spurred on by the upcoming election and push back from voting constituents. To the great disappointment of sane people everywhere, however, the group abruptly withdrew the letter by the very next day, claiming (implausibly enough) both that it had been written months before and that it was sent out by a staffer in error. (It seems safe to say that prevarication is not Representative Jayapal’s forte.) One thing is clear: the saber-rattling Democratic Party no longer permits antiwar dissenters in its ranks, for it is obvious that someone was taken out to the woodshed by Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi or one of her operatives.

These are troubling times for free thinkers and peace-loving people, and given the capture of both mainstream and social media by the military’s propaganda machine, it is sadly predictable how “progressive” congresspersons will vote when faced with the Selective Service registration issue. For if the choice is that either everyone or else no one must be prepared to defend the nation, we can expect self-styled human rights savvy progressive lawmakers to insist that the Selective Service requirement be expanded, not abolished. Indeed, the most vociferous supporters of expanding the Selective Service requirement will be found among the progressive “woke” camp, who will insist that the issue is a matter of human rights.

In truth, mandatory conscription is the very antithesis of upholding human rights, for draftees are the moral equivalent of slaves, and slaves are people from whom all rights have been stripped away. Any person, whether male or female, heterosexual or homosexual, is free to enlist in the military. The pertinent question, then, is whether it is fair for only men to be subject to enslavement by the government. But of course it is never “fair” to strip human beings of their freedom. The answer to the question is that no one, neither men nor women, should be transformed into slaves. Governments are erected and exist to serve the people. Any institution or administration which undermines or usurps the interests and rights of citizens should be defunded and disbanded, having transmogrified into the antithesis of what it purports to be. To borrow a term which has become popular in “woke” circles, a government which perpetrates such abuses of power should be cancelled.

Laurie Calhoun is the author of We Kill Because We Can: From Soldiering to Assassination in the Drone AgeWar and Delusion: A Critical ExaminationTheodicy: A Metaphilosophical InvestigationYou Can LeaveLaminated Souls, and Philosophy Unmasked: A Skeptic’s Critique, in addition to many essays and book chapters.

November 1, 2022 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Militarism | , | 1 Comment

Concerns About Western Weapons Flowing to Ukraine Growing Louder

Samizdat – 01.11.2022

The US and its allies have earmarked nearly $100 billion in security and economic aid to Ukraine so far this year. Last month, the White House asked Congress for a $11.7 billion top-up. Where is this money going? Who’s benefiting from Western taxpayers’ generosity? And why are some US officials suddenly so concerned?

As the Ukrainian security crisis enters its ninth month and the seemingly bottomless pit of Western military and economic support for Kiev continues to expand, some US media and lawmakers have expressed growing weariness about the prospect of shoveling even more cash into the conflict in the weeks and months to come.

On Monday, the editors of Bloomberg, the New York-based financial and business media empire, sent a signal to America’s business community through a rare collective editorial requesting more “transparency” from the Biden administration about where American aid to Ukraine is going.

“The scale of the aid effort is unprecedented. In just seven months, the US has provided Ukraine with nearly double what it gave all of Western Europe on an annual basis during the Marshall Plan in real terms. Support for Ukraine’s military this year equals what the US provided Israel, Egypt and Afghanistan combined in 2020,” the business outlet stressed, calculating that Washington’s support accounts for $60 billion, or two thirds of all Western support for Kiev this year.

At least $27.5 billion of that is for military needs, according to the Kiel Institute for the World Economy’s Ukraine Support Tracker.

Pointing out that Kiev hasn’t exactly been a paragon of good governance and anti-corruption, even before the escalation of the Ukrainian crisis, Bloomberg made the unprecedented admission that there’s “the possibility, however slight, that US-made weaponry could fall into the wrong hands or be sold to actors outside Ukraine.” Accordingly, the outlet asked Washington to appoint a special watchdog on Ukraine aid, similar to the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction created in 2008.

The effectiveness of such an appointment would be questionable at best, and futile at worst. Last year, Brown University’s Costs of War project calculated that the United States spent over $2 trillion in Afghanistan, equivalent to over $300 million per day for 20 straight years. Still, the effort to turn the war-torn West Asian nation into a model of Western-style governance and democracy collapsed like a house of cards in August 2021, when the Taliban* smashed the country’s NATO-trained army in ten days as US and allied forces evacuated. The inspector general’s appointment seems to have done little in stopping or even stemming the largess of spending on the war in Afghanistan.

Nevertheless, even the mere admission that US arms could destabilize the situation and cause a spike in weapons flows to international black markets and criminal groups is significant, as it echoes concerns that Russian officials from the president to the foreign and defense ministries have been expressing for many months.

“This is not a question only of small arms; there are risks of more powerful weapons falling into the hands of criminals, including man-portable air defense systems and high precision weapons,” President Vladimir Putin said at a recent meeting with regional security officials.

Last month, Republican House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, whose party appears poised to take the House and possibly the Senate in the upcoming midterm elections, expressed opposition to giving Ukraine a never-ending “blank check” of American aid as ordinary Americans suffer the consequences of a recession. President Biden admitted that he was “worried” about McCarthy’s rhetoric, accusing the GOP of not “getting” that Washington’s assistance to Kiev wasn’t about Ukraine, but about Eastern Europe, NATO, and “really serious, serious consequential outcomes.”

As domestic weapons stocks show signs of running low and amid US media reports citing behind-the-scenes grumbling from the military and government over the issue continue to mount, it bears repeating the question about where Western arms support for Ukraine is actually going.

Where are the Weapons Zelensky?

It turns out the White House and the Pentagon don’t actually know where the aid goes, with sources telling US media back in April that the Pentagon has “zero” clue where most of the arms end up after they drop into the “big black hole” of the conflict. This is especially the case with small and compact arms like Javelin anti-tank missiles and Stinger man-portable air defense missiles, which can’t be tracked via satellites and “with nobody on the ground” to keep a lookout.

From time to time, moments of clarity poke through the fog of war.

On Sunday, Finland’s National Bureau of Investigation reported that weapons sent to Ukraine had somehow found their way into the hands of local motorcycle gangs, as well as criminal groups in Sweden, Denmark and the Netherlands.

Earlier this year, Sputnik Arabic plunged into the seedy recesses of the so-called dark web, finding a Ukraine-based arms dealer willing to ship US-made M4 assault rifles to the conflict zone in Yemen via Poland and Portugal, for a fee.

Separately, in August, a major US television network posted and then quietly scrubbed an investigative feature which revealed that as little as “30 percent” of the Western military aid sent to Ukraine was actually reaching the frontline.

Some Western-dominated regional and international security cooperation agencies have also given an indication (mostly underreported by the mainstream media) on the danger of sending weapons to Kiev.

Europol, the European Union criminal policing agency subordinated to Brussels, continues to resist admitting the scale of the weapons smuggling problem, assuring in July that it is “working with Ukrainian officials to mitigate the threat of arms trafficking into the European Union” and that it has “full confidence” in Kiev’s “measures to monitor and track these firearms.”

However, Interpol, Europol’s older and more respected cousin, has urged the international community to brace for weapons that have been sent to Ukraine ending up in criminal hands. Agency secretary general Juergen Stock warned in June that “the high availability of weapons during the current conflict will result in the proliferation in illicit arms in the post-conflict phase.” Criminal groups are already preparing. “This will come, I have no doubts,” Stock said.

Given the scale of the Ukrainian crisis, and the shady nature of criminal weapons smugglers’ activities to begin with, the real extent and scope of illicit arms smuggling operations, and just how far up the totem pole of Ukrainian and Western administrative power it goes, has yet to be revealed, and probably won’t be revealed, until years or even decades from now.

During the 1980s Soviet War in Afghanistan, the Central Intelligence Agency ran ‘Operation Cyclone’, a drugs and weapons running operation which armed the Afghan Mujahedeen with over $3 billion in US- and European-made weaponry, including Stinger missiles and other sophisticated equipment.

In the decades that followed, Washington discovered how difficult it is to recover these arms from the Afghan ‘freedom fighters’, who eventually morphed into the Taliban, and fought a two decade-long war against the US and NATO occupation, including using weapons sent in the 1980s. In the meantime, Osama Bin Laden, the al-Qaeda leader who served as one of the Arab commanders in Afghanistan in the 1980s, wound up declaring a holy war against the US, with Washington ultimately fingering his terrorist group for the deaths of over 3,000 Americans on 9/11 and in other attacks.

November 1, 2022 Posted by | Corruption, Militarism | , , | Leave a comment

Moscow Wants Answers Over Truss’ Alleged ‘It’s Done’ SMS to Blinken Moments After Nord Stream Blasts

Samizdat – 01.11.2022

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova wants answers regarding the mysterious “It’s done” iPhone message allegedly sent by then-Prime Minister Liz Truss to the US secretary of state moments after the sabotage attacks against the Nord Stream network in late September.

“To be honest, I don’t care who got this information and how. I’m interested in London’s answer to the following question: Did Prime Minister Liz Truss of Britain send a message to US Secretary of State Antony Blinken immediately after the Nord Stream gas pipeline was blown up with the words ‘It’s done’?” Zakharova asked in a Telegram post Tuesday.

The spokeswoman suggested that “millions of people around the world” were waiting for answers to the question of how the planet’s energy security was undermined, “and what role the Anglo-Saxons played in this terrorist attack.”

On Monday, a US defense and national security news outlet reported that among the information suspected to have been leaked from Truss’s “hacked cell phone” was the aforementioned text message between the now former UK leader and the US top diplomat.

Internet entrepreneur and free speech activist Kim Dotcom mentioned the “It’s Done” message in a Twitter thread Sunday, shortly after British media ran a piece on Truss’s hacked phone.

“iCloud admin access rocks,” sarcastically Dotcom wrote, referring to the Apple service allowing for iPhone text messages, files, photos and other information to be saved ‘to the cloud’ and accessed by authorized computers (thus making user files vulnerable to hacking). “It’s not just the Five Eyes that have backdoor admin access to all Big Tech databases,” Dotcom added, referencing the intelligence alliance of Anglosphere nations including the US, the UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. “Russia and China have sophisticated cyber units too.”

“The funny thing is Govt officials with top security clearance still prefer using iPhones over their NSA & GCHQ issued encrypted shit-phones,” Dotcom wrote.

A series of explosions knocked out three of the four strings of the Nord Stream network on September 26. Western officials and media immediately began singing in unison that Russia blew up its own $20 billion pipeline infrastructure for reasons unknown. The Kremlin accused the West of an “unprecedented act of state terrorism” involving Nord Stream, but did not name any specific states, with President Vladimir Putin only hinting involvement by the “Anglo-Saxons” (typically a reference to Brits and Americans in Russian usage).

After a month-long investigation, the Russian Ministry of Defense revealed Saturday that Britain’s Royal Navy took part in the planning, organization and carrying out of the Nord Stream attack.

The damage to the Nord Stream network has robbed Central and Western Europe of a major traditional source of natural gas ahead of the winter heating season. Yamal-Europe and Soyuz, two major Russian overland pipelines delivering natural gas to Europe, have also been halted, or experienced a major drop in usage, sparking questions about the region’s energy security. Late last month, French President Emmanuel Macron complained that Paris’s American allies had jacked up the price on natural gas deliveries to Europe, and that Europeans were being made to pay “3-4 times” more than Americans for the same gas. “That is unfair. These are double standards,” Macron complained.

November 1, 2022 Posted by | False Flag Terrorism, War Crimes | , | 1 Comment


The Highwire with Del Bigtree | October 27, 2022

Del revisits the momentous case ICAN took against the CDC and reveals the data they withheld from their own Covid-19 vaccine injury reporting system, V-Safe.

November 1, 2022 Posted by | Deception, Science and Pseudo-Science, Video | , | Leave a comment