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Could this US case explode the global censorship cartel orchestrated by the BBC?

By Serena Wylde | TCW Defending Freedom | January 19, 2023

As the legacy media are showing no let-up in their vicious mendacity, particularly concerning Andrew Bridgen MP, it seems pertinent to highlight the likely next steps in the landmark case against the BBC-orchestrated cartel, the ‘Trusted News Initiative’, recently filed in Texas by Children’s Health Defense, their founder Robert F Kennedy Jr and others. As we reported here, the TNI, comprising the BBC, the Associated Press, Reuters, the Washington Post and a raft of others, stand accused by the plaintiffs of both violating the anti-trust laws which protect against collusion between commercial competitors, and the First Amendment of the US Constitution which protects freedom of speech, on the grounds that the purpose of the cartel is to prevent anyone publishing content that undermines the commercial and reputational interests of its members.

Jed Rubenfeld, the lawyer responsible for crafting the case against the media giants, foresees that they will throw unlimited funds at legal teams to generate a barrage of motions to have the case dismissed on one basis or another before it reaches court. They will argue on every pretext that the plaintiffs don’t have a claim. As each of these motions will have to be fought by the plaintiffs, this is a tactic of drowning the adversary in paperwork to exhaust its resources before any damage can be done in the form of exposure by the case coming to court. RFK’s legal team expect to be out-resourced and outspent by TNI’s deep pockets, and because the secretive cartel has everything to lose if the case proceeds to trial. But they will fight the motions tooth and nail as they believe the facts and the law are on their side, and once this major hurdle is surmounted, the plaintiffs will then be granted ‘discovery’.

The potential discovery process has RFK highly motivated, not only because it grants access to the internal communications between the defendants, essential to proving the case, but because he wants to interrogate each defendant as to why they signed up to being a part of a worldwide censorship campaign in direct betrayal of their role as the gatekeepers of liberty, in service of the people against the oppressive tendencies and overreach of government. In his words, he wants to confront each and every one of them and ask them what individual advantage they saw from this secret arrangement, and whether they believe in censorship.

Prior to the American Revolution, suppression and censorship of free speech in the American Colonies was fiercely pursued under the laws of the British Crown, which mercilessly prosecuted the dissemination of information unfavourable to it under the crime of ‘seditious libel’. This is why James Madison introduced his original version of the First Amendment in the Bill of Rights of 1789 by stating: ‘The people shall not be deprived or abridged of their right to speak, to write, or to publish their sentiments; and the freedom of the press, as one of the great bulwarks of liberty, shall be inviolable.’ And why in the First Amendment jurisprudence of the US Supreme Court, a judgment from some eighty years ago contains the words: ‘The freedom of speech depends on the widest possible dissemination of information from diverse and antagonistic sources. It is vital to the welfare of the Republic.’

The American War of Independence was won in 1783. Two hundred and forty years on, it is hard to imagine Providence will reverse the most vital of principles it led to. But we have some way to go yet. If the case proceeds, RFK’s legal team have asked for a trial by jury, a fitting request for a case which breaches everyone’s rights, and thus should be adjudicated by a jury of regular people. Litigation is expensive, which raises the question: if the BBC is funded by the licence-paying public, who will foot their bill?  Initially, lawyers for them will be preparing to prevent the case from being heard. But if that fails and the case proceeds, there will be legal fees for defending the case in court. And if they lose in court, there will be very considerable damages to pay, plus the adversary’s legal fees. As for the reputational damage to the corporation, that will be for the demos to decide.

January 21, 2023 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance | , , , , , | Leave a comment

GMC Blinks First: Regulator Declines to Investigate Dr Aseem Malhotra Over Vaccine Warnings in BBC Interview


To paraphrase the Sound of Music song, “How do we solve a problem like Malhotra?” After receiving several complaints, the General Medical Council has decided not to investigate cardiologist Dr. Aseem Malhotra, who has become a thorn in the side of the medical profession.

Professional regulators have been at the forefront of pandemic discipline, contributing to a culture of fear among practitioners. Severe action has been taken against registrants who criticise or do not comply with the official narrative. I know this from my experience as an officer of the Workers of England Union, representing members brought before the Nursing and Midwifery Council on charges of bringing the profession into disrepute. Apparently the public must be protected against nurses who don’t believe that masks stop airborne respiratory viruses, or who believe in informed consent for novel mRNA vaccines.

A significant strike against this censorial tyranny was by general practitioner Sam White last year. Dr. White was ordered, as a condition of maintaining his clinical licence, to delete his social media posts about COVID-19 and to refrain from making similar comments. Dr. White took the GMC to the High Court and won. The condition was overturned as a breach of his rights to freedom of expression under the Human Rights Act 1998.

Whereas White was an early critic of COVID-19 policy, Malhotra is a relatively recent convert. Initially he promoted the vaccine, but when his fit and healthy father died shortly after receiving the injections, Malhotra changed his mind and began speaking out against the mass vaccination programme. His personal loss came alongside his observation in clinical practice of a marked increase in myocarditis cases (as well as blood clots and other cardiac complications). Malhotra had a review paper published on this phenomenon, and his findings of iatrogenic harm are corroborated by other medical scientists.

Malhotra has repeatedly urged suspension of the vaccination programme until the risks are better understood. He became a darling of vaccine sceptics, with his charismatic and compassionate voice doing the rounds of alt media channels and independent-minded broadcasters working for more mainstream channels (such as Tucker Carlson’s show on Fox News, and Neil Oliver on GB News ). However, he was ignored by the legacy media, and it was not until two weeks ago, when he took the opportunity of a BBC interview on statins, that his call was more widely heard.

The context for Malhotra’s BBC appearance was a claim by Chief Medical Officer Chris Whitty that cardiac morbidity had increased as a result of limited access to statins during lockdown. Malhotra disagreed, explaining that myocarditis is unrelated to cholesterol level, which statins are meant to control. He instead blamed the vaccines, telling the BBC presenter that this radical medical intervention should be halted. Cue outrage.

The Guardian did a particularly nasty report on Malhotra, smearing him as a peddler of an ‘anti-vax’ conspiracy theory. Numerous doctors expressed their outrage on social media, angered by the BBC giving a platform to this known sceptic, who they accused of hijacking an interview on a different topic. Some reported Malhotra to the GMC.

The GMC’s decision not to act against Malhotra is a victory for science, ethics and common sense, but we should not get ahead of ourselves. This was a reluctant decision by the regulator, as the wording of their response to the referrals shows:

We recognise that Dr Malhotra has views on the COVID-19 mRNA vaccines that are at odds with the national and international scientific and medical communities. We also recognise that his words are strong and there is a question around the accuracy of his statements. There is currently no evidence that Dr. Malhotra has engaged in the type of Covid conspiracy related conduct that has to date justified regulatory action.

Note here the emphasis on consensus, as if that amounts to truth. It seems that if Malhotra had followed the likes of James Delingpole or Maajid Nawaz down the rabbit hole of globalist conspiracy, he would have been in big trouble. The GMC continued:

We also feel it is relevant that Dr. Malhotra started expressing his concerns about the vaccines in late 2021 and by this time the vaccine programme was well underway with the vast majority of vaccines delivered before this time. We would suggest that Dr. Malhotra’s impact on the COVID-19 vaccination programme in the U.K. could only have been negligible.

This is the most worrying line in the GMC response. If Malhotra is right about the risks of these vaccines, the GMC should be concerned that doctors were inhibited from speaking out earlier, thereby potentially saving lives. Instead, the GMC assumes that Malhotra is wrong, and that his remarks have not stopped the biggest vaccination drive in history.

The GMC acknowledged that Malhotra has a right to freedom of expression under Article 10 of the Human Rights Act, although that is not an absolute right for a medical practitioner. His outspoken opinions on the vaccines, according to the GMC, are “not so egregious as to justify a public hearing and a forum for further scepticism to be aired as to aspects of the COVID-19 pandemic and response”.

This, I believe, is the real reason why the GMC has decided not to take any further action. Any proceedings would inevitably attract publicity and give Dr. Malhotra a platform to air his sceptical views. Ultimately, the truth will get out, and those who tried to hide it will be judged by history.

Dr. Niall McCrae is a former university lecturer who now works for the Workers of England Union.

January 21, 2023 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance, Science and Pseudo-Science | , , | Leave a comment

New Study Shows Respiratory Syncytial Virus Not a Hospitalization Threat to Frail Adults

Media Hype Died as Data Show Ambulatory Management is Sufficient

By Peter A. McCullough, MD, MPH | Courageous Discourse | January 21, 2023

I have noticed on occasion over the past three years that media hype can well up over an infectious disease threat and then for unexplained reasons the story is dropped without follow-up or resolution. Examples include a global hepatitis outbreak in children, monkeypox, group A strep, and the “tripledemic” of COVID-19, influenza, and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV). Some of these news stories escalate to a frenzy and in the case of monkeypox, President Biden declared a national emergency.

Americans are wondering to this day where is the monkeypox emergency? How has it impacted our lives? Most doctors including myself have never seen a case!

Last fall the fervor over RSV, largely a mild infantile illness was amplified to a point where some doctors were pushing for a third national emergency declaration (SARS-CoV-2, monkeypox, RSV). We were told new vaccines would be needed in every human being. Like the other stories, the RSV scare seems to have disappeared in the media cycle.

Concerns may be allayed in some part by a recent paper from Juhn et al of N=2325 adults including frail seniors that demonstrated a negligible risk (1 hospitalization, 0 deaths) with adult RSV usually manageable with outpatient nebulizer treatments for a few days.

If it occurs in infants and small children, a few hours in an urgent care or emergency department may be needed for breathing treatments, but again the outcomes are very favorable and certainly do not warrant vaccination, frightening news stories, or calls for national emergencies.

Pediatricians Call for National Emergency as Flu, RSV Surge Written by Lisa O’Mary Nov 17 2022

Juhn YJ, Wi CI, Takahashi PY, Ryu E, King KS, Hickman JA, Yao JD, Binnicker MJ, Natoli TL, Evans TK, Sampathkumar P, Patten C, Luyts D, Pirçon JY, Damaso S, Pignolo RJ. Incidence of Respiratory Syncytial Virus Infection in Older Adults Before and During the COVID-19 Pandemic. JAMA Netw Open. 2023 Jan 3;6(1):e2250634. doi: 10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2022.50634. PMID: 36662530.

January 21, 2023 Posted by | Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Science and Pseudo-Science | | Leave a comment

RT France Head Announces Broadcaster’s Closure After Paris Blocks Its Accounts

Sputnik – 21.01.2023

On the air in France, Belgium, Canada, Switzerland, and Mediterranean countries since 2017, RT France quickly became one of the largest alternative Francophone news broadcasters in Europe and North America. RT France was banned from broadcasting throughout the EU and Canada in early 2022 for providing a Russian perspective on the Ukraine crisis.

RT France has announced its closure after the blocking of its bank accounts in France.

“After five years of harassment, the authorities in power have achieved their goal, the closure of RT France,” the broadcaster said in a press statement tweeted out by Editor-in-Chief Xenia Fedorova on Saturday.

“Under the cover of the 9th package of sanctions against Russia, which does not target our channel, but its shareholder and parent company, the Directorate General of the Treasury decided to freeze the bank accounts of RT France, making it impossible to continue our activity,” the statement explained.

The broadcaster cited a series of recent articles and columns in French media which it said was designed to smear RT France and take it off the air.

“Clearly working with the authorities, some of our colleagues confused their role as journalists with that of policemen or judges, calling… for censorship of our media, and not hesitating to resort to false information, claiming, for example, that the activity of RT France was prohibited or illegal,” the statement said.

After an EU blanket block against Sputnik and RT in early 2022, RT France continued broadcasting online and via a Russian satellite, and its content accessed via VPN or social media.

In Saturday’s statement, the broadcaster recalled that it has been the target of forces seeking to shut it up since its launch for offering a “breath of fresh air” in an “ever-less representative and increasingly narrow media world, where critical thinking is no longer allowed.” The channel expressed pride in the “seriousness and rigor” of its coverage, and stressed its keenness to “present all opinions, give everyone a voice,” and “dare to question” – to quote its slogan.

The broadcaster emphasized that its coverage of the conflict in Ukraine – which got it banned from television broadcast in 2022, was consistently treated in a “vigilant” and “balanced way,” “whatever our detractors, who very often only rarely glanced at our channel, and obviously with a biased way, say.”

“In this particular geopolitical context, the opportunity presented itself to take advantage of this situation to (finally) gag RT France by banishing it from the European Union and from France,” despite the absence of any legal justification, the broadcaster noted.

RT France also lamented that 123 of its French employees, including 77 journalists with press cards, now risk remaining unpaid for the month of January, and losing their jobs by government decree. “Beyond the terrible economic impact for many families, there is the question of the future of media pluralism in France, its representativeness, and its independence,” as well as “the freedom of thought and expression in our society,” its statement noted.

The broadcaster emphasized that its closure, accompanied by the “deafening silence” of other French media and journalists, is an “extremely dangerous first step, because after our channel other media will be targeted.”

RT France’s bank accounts were frozen this week on the basis of European sanctions adopted last December.

The Russian Foreign Ministry warned Paris that it would retaliate unless French authorities stop “terrorizing” its journalists.

Sputnik and RT Editor-in-Chief Margarita Simonyan blasted the move to freeze the accounts on Friday, sarcastically calling it a true demonstration of “liberte, egalite et fraternite” (liberty, equality and fraternity).

RT France appealed its 2022 ban to the European Court of Justice last spring, but lost, hearing that the broadcaster needed to be silenced “at a time when opinions were forming on the war in Ukraine.”

January 21, 2023 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance, Russophobia | , , , | 3 Comments

The climate scaremongers: Gas boiler ban is one step closer

By Paul Homewood | TCW Defending Freedom | January 20, 2023

A review of Net Zero has recommended that sales of gas boilers must be banned within ten years at the latest. The supposedly ‘independent’ review was commissioned by Liz Truss in her short spell as PM, and was written by Tory MP Chris Skidmore, who as Energy Minister signed the Net Zero Act into law in 2019.

The reality is that virtually nobody who owns a gas boiler is remotely interested in replacing it with a heat pump. Sales of heat pumps in the UK are running at around 35,000 a year, despite generous government subsidies, a long way short of the government target of 600,000 a year.

The reason is obvious. Installing a heat pump, with the new radiators, pipework and extra insulation required, will probably cost upwards of £20,000 for a typical home. Worse, despite the currently high cost of gas, running costs for a heat pump are still higher than a gas boiler.

In practice, a ban on gas boilers would force most people into buying conventional electrical heaters, such as storage heaters. These are cheaper to buy but hugely expensive to run; annual heating costs for a typical home are about £1,500 for a gas boiler, but would rise to £5,000 for electrical heating.

This is not the only mad policy suggestion in Skidmore’s review. He also wants all houses sold to meet EPC C by 2033. EPC is the Energy Performance Certificate, when it is estimated that only 40 per cent of houses meet this standard at the moment. Skidmore’s bright idea will force millions of homeowners and landlords to spend thousands on improving insulation against their will.

Of course, this ‘independent’ review is nothing of the sort. Skidmore, MP for Kingswood, is one of the bunch of extremist green Tories; he even opposed Truss’s attempts to reinstate fracking. It was inevitable that he would rubber-stamp the Net Zero agenda. A truly independent review would have critically assessed all the assumptions, costings and projections for this appalling piece of legislation. Instead we have got a report that might as well have been written by Gummer’s Committee on Climate Change. We get all the same platitudes that we have read many times before in CCC handouts – how cheap renewable energy is, millions of green jobs, how we will all be better off by 2050 (we have to take Skidmore’s word for this), how we must not fall behind the rest of the world in the race for Net Zero.

I have searched the report comprehensively, and cannot find a single reference to the costs which will have to be borne in the medium term by the public, things like heat pumps, insulation and electric cars. These costs will be unaffordable for most households, and will act as a brake on economic growth in the same way as high energy prices are doing now. Nobody cares about how well off they may be in 30 years’ time, and certainly won’t believe anybody who tells them he does know. But people do know that current policies will be extremely expensive.

Neither is there any quantification of the massive costs which will be incurred for upgrading electricity grids and distribution networks, and building hydrogen storage and infrastructure. Or the reliance on unproven carbon capture.

Nor is there any critical assessment as to how the country can run predominantly on intermittent wind and solar power, albeit backed up by nuclear power. Instead Skidmore seems simply to accept the pie-in-the-sky projections of the National Grid, calling for more wind and solar power.

The report does mention CCC estimates of the need to spend £50billion to 60billion a year by the early 2030s. As it points out, most of this will come from private sector investors, who will want high returns. Skidmore does not mention that it will be the poor old consumer who will end up paying for all this. It is no surprise that big business is queuing up for its share of the money pot.

Since its very inception, the Net Zero Act was enacted as a ‘good idea’, without any plan as to how it could be carried out, or a clearly costed budget. This review should have been an ideal opportunity to row back, putting the whole thing on the back burner while these fundamental issues were addressed. Sadly it is a chance missed.

Is climate change killing off the puffins?

Another go-to scare story for climate alarmists is that Atlantic puffins are at risk from global warming. It is a story that comes around every year as regular as clockwork.

According to a recent report in the Telegraph,  70 per cent of Europe’s puffins could be lost in the next 80 years, because of ‘stormy weather caused by climate change’. Naturally no evidence is presented to prove that stormy weather is increasing, probably because it isn’t!

Far from dying out, puffins have been thriving off the Pembrokeshire coast on the islands of Skomer and Skokholm. There are more puffins there now than at any time since the 1940s, when numbers peaked before the population crashed.

Skomer Island Puffin Count

Although there are an estimated 10 million puffins breeding along Europe’s coastline, it has been reported that some populations are declining around the North Sea. But the cause of this is not climate change, but something much more basic – the industrial fishing of sand eels, which make up most of the diet of puffins during their breeding season. If climate change was a factor, we would be seeing the same decline on Skomer.

Less fish available for adult puffins means underfed pufflins, which are less likely to make it to adulthood.

In 2020, 238,000 tons of sand eel were harvested by fishing vessels in the North Sea, all of which goes to Danish oil and fishmeal processing factories. Danish vessels have the largest share of the fishing quota, landing 72 per cent of the catch. Both the EU and Denmark claim that fishing quotas are adequate to maintain the sand eel population. But as is always the case with the EU, vested interests trump any other considerations.

The link between sand eel fishing and seabird populations is well established. A study in 2014 found that ‘the UK’s internationally important seabird populations are being affected by fishing activities in the North Sea. Levels of seabird breeding failure were higher in years when a greater proportion of the North Sea’s sand eels, important prey for seabirds, was commercially fished’. It also noted that seabirds breeding on the UK’s western colonies are faring better than those on the North Sea coast.

But don’t expect the EU to shut down Denmark’s fishmeal industry. It’s much easier to blame climate change!

January 21, 2023 Posted by | Economics, Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity | | 3 Comments

Fire hazard: Ferry company bans electric cars

Free West Media | January 20, 2023

OSLO – A Norwegian shipping company has banned electric cars on its ferries because according to a risk analysis, the risk of fire from such vehicles is too great. An ocean liner had recently sunk because of it.

The listed Norwegian shipping company Havila has banned electric, hybrid and hydrogen cars from its ferries. After a risk analysis, it was concluded that the risk to the safety of the shipping fleet was too great. If a car catches fire, the fire can no longer be extinguished.

The shipping company travels the so-called mail ship route along the coast of northern Norway. The tours are important for Scandinavian passenger and cargo traffic and are also very popular with holidaymakers.

The risks for ships from the transport of electric cars have been discussed since the Felicity Ace sank off the Azores last February. E-vehicles on board had caught fire and the blaze could not be extinguished. Finally, the huge ship sank with thousands of electric cars and vehicles from Porsches and Bentleys.

According to a report by the TradeWinds shipping news service, Havila shipping company boss Bent Martini said the risk analysis showed that the fire in an electric car required a particularly complex rescue operation. The crew on board could not afford this. Passengers would also be at risk. This is different for vehicles with combustion engines. A possible fire is usually easy to fight by the crew.

After the sinking of the Felicity Ace, Greenpeace also warned against e-cars on ships: “In general, electronic components and especially electric vehicles pose a risk for every transport,” it said at the time.

January 21, 2023 Posted by | Economics | 1 Comment

German electricity to be rationed as EVs and heat pumps threaten collapse of local power grids

Net Zero Watch | January 19, 2023

The Federal Network Agency is planning to ration the power supply to heat pumps and EV charging stations in order to protect the distribution grids from collapse. Charging times of three hours to charge electric cars will be allowed so that they can cover a distance of 50 kilometers.

Electric cars, heat pumps and private solar systems are booming. This is pushing the power grids in cities and communities to their limits.

An expert quoted by the “FAZ” warns that the local power grids are in danger of becoming the bottleneck for the energy transition. According to estimates, expanding it would cost a three-digit billion amount.

The Federal Network Agency wants to ration electricity for consumers to prevent a collapse in supply.

Electric cars are booming, as are heat pumps and private solar systems on roofs. This should only be the beginning of the energy transition in Germany. But the energy industry is already warning that the local power grids in cities and communities are reaching their performance limits. This has been reported by the “Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung” (FAZ). According to the report, the Federal Network Agency is planning to temporarily ration the power supply to heat pumps and charging stations in order to protect the distribution grids from overload.

A year ago, the network agency confirmed a “network development plan” in which up to seven million heat pumps in households are expected for 2035. So far there have been around one million heat pump systems.

Enormous growth is also expected in electric vehicles. For large network operators such as Eon, the current figures are a challenge. “The applications for the connection of new systems are going through the roof, and we assume that the growth rates will continue to grow,” said Eon board member Thomas König. According to the “FAZ”, the electricity supplier registered around 100,000 new charging stations for electric cars in 2021.

Local power grids threatened to become the bottleneck for the energy transition, Krzysztof Rudion, professor at the Institute for Energy Transmission and High Voltage Technology at the TU Stuttgart, told the newspaper. “The expansion of the distribution network simply cannot keep up with the boom in heat pumps, electric cars and solar systems.”

In order to arm the distribution grids, between 100 and 135 billion euros would have to be invested in Germany in the next decade and a half, the FAZ reports, citing a new study by the management consultancy Oliver Wyman.

Full story (in German)
Translation Net Zero Watch

January 21, 2023 Posted by | Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity | , | 1 Comment

Russia and Pakistan agree major energy deal

RT | January 21, 2023

Moscow and Islamabad have reached “conceptual” agreements on supplies of Russian oil and petroleum products to Pakistan, Russian Deputy Energy Minister Sergey Mochalnikov said at an intergovernmental commission meeting in the Pakistani capital on Friday.

Earlier in December, the minister of petroleum, Musaddiq Malik, visited Moscow to negotiate energy supplies to Islamabad and announced that Russia would provide oil, gasoline, and diesel to the country at discounts. He did not specify the price but noted that the talks were “more productive than expected.”

During the meeting in Islamabad, the sides also discussed “remaining questions” on the construction of the Pakistan Stream gas pipeline and the prospects for wider cooperation in energy and power engineering.

Mochalnikov said Russia presented a concept of future gas supplies to Pakistan, adding that “we must evaluate the position of the Pakistan Stream in this concept as soon as possible.”

The day before, Russian Energy Minister Nikolay Shulginov stated that Moscow is “ready to sign required corporate documents” to kickstart the construction of the pipeline.

Russia and Pakistan signed an intergovernmental agreement on the construction of the North-South gas pipeline (Pakistan Stream) from Karachi to Lahore in 2015. The launch of the project was postponed several times. The 1,100km pipeline with a capacity of 12.3 billion cubic meters of gas per year will link liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminals in the ports of Karachi and Gwadar in southern Pakistan with power plants and industrial gas consumers in Lahore in the north of the country.

The pipeline will transport both regasified gas and pipeline gas from various sources, including Iran and Turkmenistan, according to Shulginov.

“The approach to the implementation of such projects has to be comprehensive. It means not only a pipeline but also a source of gas for it. And we are currently discussing the project both from the point of view of transporting regasified gas and pipeline gas,” the minister said.

Islamabad is also seeking to negotiate long-term deals with Russia on imports of LNG, as there is currently no stable supplier for the country. Pakistan has been struggling with an acute energy shortage, and the surge in global oil and gas prices has worsened the situation. Imports of the fuel have become five to ten times more expensive due to increased demand in the EU.

January 21, 2023 Posted by | Economics | , | 1 Comment

A Taiwan bloodbath might suit US decision-makers just fine

Wargames point to heavy losses in a conflict with China, but that’s unlikely to discourage America’s war advocates

By Tony Cox | RT | January 21, 2023

Most sane human beings would shudder to think about the carnage that would result from a US-China war over Taiwan. For the warmongers and military-industrial-complex profiteers in Washington, the bloody prospects are something to contemplate and calculate with a mixture of anticipation and opportunism.

No matter how they run the various scripts, the computers and the human analysts spit out findings that ought to be sobering for policy makers and generals alike. Consider, for example, this month’s wargaming report by the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), a US think tank that considers its mission to be defining the “future of national security.”

CSIS studied 24 different scenarios for a US-China conflict following a Chinese invasion of Taiwan. The gist of its findings was that the invasion would fail, but at an enormous cost to all parties involved. The US and Japan would lose dozens of warships, including two American aircraft carriers, hundreds of planes and thousands of troops. Taiwan would be left in ruins, “without electricity and basic services.” The think tank sees the dust clearing with Beijing’s vaunted naval forces “in shambles,” hundreds of ships and aircraft lost, and tens of thousands of Chinese troops either dead or captured.

I would argue that the outcome would be worse for the US and its allies (more on that later), but even if we accept a Washington-centric, rose-colored view of the conflict for discussion’s sake, it would seem like the sort of catastrophe that would terrify leaders on all sides – and spur them to ease tensions in the region. However, the scary thing is that if we consider Washington’s tactics past and present, America’s real decision-makers might actually be encouraged and emboldened by the CSIS’s projections.

When there’s money to be made and more power to be secured, Washington’s rulers have no qualms about getting thousands – or even millions – of people killed or maimed. That’s especially true of the smaller allies that they vow to support. From the South Vietnamese to the Iraqi and Syrian Kurds to the Afghans who sided with the West against the Taliban, many a little brother can testify to how big brother emboldened him to fight, pledging to have his back, only to throw him under the bus when it came time to skedaddle.

As former South Vietnamese president Nguyen Van Thieu put it after being betrayed by the US, “It is so easy to be an enemy of the United States, but so difficult to be a friend.”

The CSIS report paints a grim picture of the heavy losses that Japan and especially Taiwan would suffer. But from a US perspective, the allies’ devastation would be a small price to pay for feeding the American war machine.

We’re seeing the same thing play out today in Ukraine, where US politicians have spoken openly of what a great deal it is for the Pentagon to help kill Russian forces without putting any of its own troops in harm’s way. Washington helped lay the groundwork for the conflict by pushing for the expansion of NATO up to Russia’s borders and helping to overthrow the elected government of Ukraine in 2014. Having achieved their desired proxy war, US leaders are trying to prolong it to weaken Russia’s military and generate more profits.

This isn’t altogether good news for the people who have to actually fight this bloody conflict. Big brother is happy to keep it going to the last Ukrainian. Little brother – the Ukrainian forces, for whom the US and its allies profess to care so deeply – just gets to die. Ukrainian Defense Minister Aleksey Reznikov admitted in a January 5 TV interview that Kiev’s forces are “shedding their blood” for NATO, which probably didn’t give much satisfaction to the troops whose bodies littered the streets in Soledar when Russian forces captured the strategic city a week later.

That doesn’t mean Washington is terribly reluctant to get its own forces killed. In fact, their deaths can sometimes be useful enough in advancing an agenda. In the early days of World War II, then-president Franklin D. Roosevelt faced strong public opposition to joining the fight. A Gallup poll in May 1940 showed that 93% of Americans opposed entering the war with troops. One week after Japanese forces attacked Pearl Harbor in December 1941, 91% said they agreed with the president’s decision to declare war on Germany and Japan.

Some historians argue that this catalyzing event, Roosevelt’s “day that will live in infamy,” didn’t happen by accident. In their view, which is considered a conspiracy theory by most other historians, Roosevelt’s administration sought to provoke Japan into attacking the US and to ensure that losses would be severe enough to make even isolationist Americans beg for war.

One of the leading advocates of this view, the late Robert Stinnett, author of ‘Day of Deceit’, described an October 1940 memo from the Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI) that detailed how the US would push Tokyo’s back against the wall. The plan included giving all possible aid to the Chinese national government led by Chiang Kai-shek; making arrangements with British and Dutch forces for use of their bases in Southeast Asia; deploying US destroyers and submarines to the Orient; keeping the main strength of the US naval fleet in Hawaii; insisting that the Dutch refuse all Japanese demands for economic concessions, especially oil; and embargoing all trade with Japan, in cooperation with the UK.

The memo was never publicly adopted, but Stinnett writes that Roosevelt and his cabinet saw and approved it (though the “presidential routing logs” he cites as evidence are not provided).

Unbeknownst to the Japanese, Stinnett and other supporters of the ‘Pearl Harbor advance-knowledge theory’ claim, the US broke their communications codes, so their hand was exposed as Washington’s policies pushed Emperor Hirohito’s empire closer and closer to an overt act of war against America. Ironically, the ONI memo’s author, Lieutenant Commander Arthur McCollum, oversaw the routing of communications intelligence to Roosevelt during the run-up to the Pearl Harbor attack.

According to Stinnett, key intelligence was withheld from the top US commanders in Hawaii, US Navy Admiral Husband Kimmel and US Army Lieutenant General Walter Short, even as the movements of Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto’s attack fleet were being monitored in the northern Pacific. When the bombs started dropping on a sleepy Sunday morning, US forces in Hawaii were caught off guard.

The attack killed 2,403 Americans, including 68 civilians, and destroyed or damaged 19 US Navy ships and hundreds of aircraft, but Roosevelt had his way. Congress voted the next day to declare war on Japan, which meant the US was essentially at war, too, with Tokyo’s ally, Nazi Germany. Adolf Hitler made it official three days later, declaring war on the US on December 11. And with US industry ramping up to build new warships, aircraft and other weaponry, the Great Depression was finally over.

While Stinnett and others like him are dubbed revisionists, and their claims are widely refuted citing questionable sourcing and factual errors, it’s not difficult to understand how US warmongers can salivate over a horrific and devastating event on the scale of Pearl Harbor.

Consider the Project for the New American Century (PNAC), a foreign policy think tank whose founding statement in 1997 was signed by such political heavyweights as Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld. John Bolton, the future national security advisor, was among its directors. In a report written in September 2000, PNAC wrote that in order to create “tomorrow’s dominant force,” the necessary transformation of America’s military would take a long time, “absent some catastrophic and catalyzing event – like a new Pearl Harbor.”

One year later, by which time Cheney had become vice president and Rumsfeld was secretary of defense, America had its new Pearl Harbor: the September 11 terrorist attacks on Washington and the Pentagon. Even the casualty total was similar, with 2,977 victims killed.

Aided by a sudden outbreak of bipartisanship in Congress, President George W. Bush’s administration leaped into action, firing up the war machine and trampling civil liberties in the name of national security. The US also followed through with a regime-change war in Iraq, as contemplated in the PNAC document.

The CSIS report, titled ‘The First Battle of the Next War’, predicts that 3,200 US troops would be killed in a Taiwan Strait conflict with China in just three weeks, while thousands more would be wounded. And after decades of operating with dominant firepower, the US Navy and Air Force would be staggered by the losses they’d suffer against China’s powerful forces.

It’s easy to imagine how war profiteers would see opportunity in such a situation. Just replacing the lost weaponry would be a bonanza for defense contractors. The aircraft carriers alone would cost more than $13 billion each. But it wouldn’t stop there.

For years, some US lawmakers have complained that even as Washington spends more on defense than the nine next-biggest military budgets combined, the Pentagon isn’t working aggressively enough to expand its forces and develop new weaponry to counter China’s rise. Imagine the spending binge that would ensue with the US military reeling from a fierce battle with Beijing.

The CSIS also predicts that the Chinese Communist Party would be destabilized by a failed invasion of Taiwan – surely an encouraging prospect for US policy makers. However, the study seems to overlook how catastrophically wrong the war could go for the US and its allies. Just as Washington has shrugged off escalation risks in its Ukrainian proxy war with Moscow, the CSIS suggests that a battle over Taiwan could be contained to that region and finished relatively quickly.

China is a nuclear-armed superpower that has grown weary of Washington’s unipolar worldview. Its leaders think in terms of centuries, not two- or four-year election cycles, and they likely wouldn’t consider losing an option in Taiwan. Through trade sanctions alone, China could wreak havoc on the US. Beijing also has allies and nuclear weapons. What if nuclear-armed North Korea saw this as a good time to attack Japan or South Korea? Wars tend to be full of surprises and unforeseen consequences.

Unfortunately, with so much to potentially be gained, US decision-makers appear to be recklessly provoking China. Washington wouldn’t publicly proclaim a policy of trying to instigate war with Beijing, just as it didn’t announce a plan to trigger a Japanese attack. However, we need only watch US actions to guess at its intentions.

For instance, was there some legitimate benefit contemplated when 82-year-old congressional leader Nancy Pelosi disregarded China’s warnings and visited Taiwan last August? Did she bring the countries closer to war or further from it? The result was China’s decision to dramatically increase drills in the Taiwan Strait and sever military and climate ties with the US.

The same questions might be asked about Washington’s “freedom-of-navigation” exercises in the region, such as when the US Navy sent warships through the Taiwan Strait earlier this month. Do such actions create more risk of conflict or less? What was the point? On the latter question, a US Navy spokeswoman said, “The United States military flies, sails and operates anywhere international law allows.”

When the US was doing the same sort of thing in 1940-41, the provocations near or within Japanese waters were called “pop-up cruises.” Roosevelt advocated the tactic, saying, “I just want them to keep popping up here and here and keep the Japs guessing.” Kimmel, who later became a scapegoat for the Pearl Harbor attack, was among the critics of the pop-up strategy, saying, “It is ill-advised and will result in war if we make this move.”

Like the sailors, soldiers and civilians whose lives were ended or shredded that day, Kimmel paid a price for the US war-instigation policy when he lost his command. But the heavy losses were a price worth paying, at somebody else’s cost, for the war planners in Washington.

Tony Cox is a US journalist who has written or edited for Bloomberg and several major daily newspapers.

January 21, 2023 Posted by | Militarism, Timeless or most popular | , | 2 Comments

Russian State Duma Speaker calls for Angela Merkel and François Hollande to be put on trial


Russian State Duma Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin has called for an international military trial, similar to the one held in Nuremberg, to prosecute former German Chancellor Merkel and former French President Francois Hollande.

“Confessions made by the representative of the Kiev regime and the former leaders of Germany and France should be used as evidence for an international military tribunal. These leaders plotted to start a world war with predictable consequences. And they deserve punishment for their crimes,” he said.

In an interview with Die Zeit, Angela Merkel asserted that she negotiated and signed the Minsk Accords not to make peace in Ukraine, but to give the Ukrainian military time to prepare for the current war [1]. François Hollande confirmed her declaration in an interview with Kyiv Independent [2].

International law considers “crimes against peace” to be more serious than crimes against humanity. However, the United Nations has never clearly defined what they actually are.

The non-application of the Minsk Accords prolonged the civil war in Ukraine for 8 years, causing at least 20,000 deaths.

Russia did not invade Ukraine, but launched a special military operation to enforce Security Council Resolution 2202; resolution validating the Minsk Accords.

[1] Hatten Sie gedacht, ich komme mit Pferdeschwanz?“, Tina Hildebrandt und Giovanni di Lorenzo, Die Zeit, 7. Dezember 2022.

[2] Hollande: ‘There will only be a way out of the conflict when Russia fails on the ground’“, Theo Prouvost, The Kyiv Independant, December 28, 2022.

January 21, 2023 Posted by | Militarism, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , , | 1 Comment