Aletho News


Killing Communists with Impunity

By Jacob G. Hornberger | FFF | March 9, 2023

The New York Times recently carried an interesting article about the death in 1973 of Pablo Neruda, one of the most renowned poets in the world. Neruda was a Chilean citizen. He was also a strong supporter of Chilean president Salvador Allende, who the Chilean national-security establishment, with the encouragement of the U.S. national-security state, ousted from power in a violent coup in that year. The coup was headed by Chilean conservative military strongman General Augusto Pinochet.

At the time of the coup, Neruda was suffering from cancer and was hospitalized. He died during the coup. The Chilean military-intelligence establishment claimed that he died from his cancer. There were always suspicions, however, that he had been murdered by the Chilean national-security establishment. 

Pablo Neruda

The Times article describes a report from a team that examined Neruda’s remains. The team found bacteria within his body that could be deadly. But they could not determine for sure whether it was, in fact, a toxic strain of bacteria and whether it had been injected into him.

One thing is for certain though: It certainly would not have been unusual for Pinochet and his henchmen to murder Neruda, with the full support of the Pentagon and the CIA, both of which had agents on the ground in Chile during the coup.

Remember: This was 1973, when the Pentagon’s and CIA’s Cold War racket was still going strong. As part of that racket, the Pentagon and the CIA had carte blanche to murder communists wherever they found them.

In 1970, the Chilean people democratically elected Allende to be their president. Allende was a socialist, one who immediately established a friendly relationship with the communist world. He even invited Cuban president Fidel Castro to visit Chile. Their parade in downtown Santiago was met with throngs of enthusiastic supporters. 

The U.S. national-security establishment deemed Allende to be a grave threat to national-security. That made him subject to being assassinated by the CIA. Don’t forget that the CIA had already repeatedly tried to assassinate Castro for being a communist. 

Rather than assassinate Allende, however, the Pentagon and the CIA instead decided to encourage the Chilean national-security establishment to initiate a violent coup against him. When the coup took place in 1973, the Chilean military tried to assassinate Allende with missiles fired at him from military planes. Allende fought back but was no match for the power of the Chilean national-security establishment. At the end of the battle, Allende lay dead, supposedly having decided to commit suicide. 

But even if Allende didn’t commit suicide, the outcome was never in doubt. The Chilean military-intelligence establishment was going to kill him, either during the coup or after the coup. That’s because it, like the Pentagon and the CIA, deemed him to be a communist. Like their counterparts in the Pentagon and the CIA, as far as they were concerned they had the omnipotent authority to kill communists, especially those within their own country. 

In fact, after the coup Pinochet and his goons routed up more than 50,000 of Allende’s supporters, including women. They murdered or disappeared around 3,000 of them. They tortured most of them. They raped or violently sexually abused many of the women. 

None of this was considered to be any big deal for the killers, the kidnappers, the rapists, and the abusers because the victims were all considered to be communists or communist sympathizers. In the minds of the Chilean national-security establishment, the only good communist was a dead communist, a tortured communist, a raped communist, or a sexually abused communist. 

All of this met with the fervent approval of the Pentagon and the CIA. U.S. taxpayer-funded money flooded into the Pinochet regime. In the eyes of the Pentagon and the CIA, Pinochet was helping win the worldwide war on communism, even if the U.S. was losing to the communists in Vietnam.

During the coup, the Chilean military took two young Americans into custody, Charles Horman and Frank Teruggi. They too were supporters of Allende. They were also opponents of the U.S. war in Vietnam. Chilean officials murdered both men. There is no way that Pinochet would have killed two Americans without first having received a green light from U.S. officials. But it was easy to secure that green light because Horman and Teruggi were considered to be unpatriotic, treasonous American communist sympathizers. 

In 1970, U.S. officials first began planning their coup against Allende. Standing in their way, however, was Gen. Rene Schneider, the overall commander of Chile’s armed forces. The CIA orchestrated his violent kidnaping to remove him as an obstacle to the coup. Schneider was murdered by the CIA-employed thugs during the kidnapping attempt. 

No one in the CIA was ever brought to justice for Schneider’s murder. For that matter, no one in the CIA or the Pentagon was ever brought to justice for Horman’s and Teruggi’s murder. 

Many years later, when the Schneider sons sued in federal court for the murder of their father, the federal judiciary made it clear that it would never interfere with any of the CIA’s or Pentagon’s state-sponsored assassinations. 

So, given all this, it certainly should not surprise anyone if Pablo Neruda was, in fact, one of the murder victims during the Chilean coup. In fact, what would be surprising is if he wasn’t. 

March 9, 2023 Posted by | Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , , | 1 Comment

Protests in Georgia, pressure campaign or anti-Russian color revolution?

By Ilya Tsukanov – Sputnik – 09.03.2023

Protesters spilled into the streets of Tbilisi this week to protest a draft law requiring NGOs to register as “agents of foreign influence” if 20% or more of their funds come from foreign sources. What are the protesters looking to achieve? How have Georgia’s Western “partners” responded? What role, if any, has Russia played? Sputnik investigates.

Georgia’s governing coalition “unconditionally” withdrew its foreign agents law from parliament on Thursday morning, folding to protesters after two nights of violent confrontations with police in the Caucasus nation’s capital, and growing pressure from the European Union and the United States to scrap the draft legislation.

“As a party of government responsible to every member of society, we have decided to unconditionally withdraw this bill that we supported,” the Georgian Dream Party, which has 74 of 150 seats in the republic’s parliament, said in a statement Thursday morning.

Giga Lemonjala, a member of the opposition Droa party, responded to the government’s announcement by demanding that the bill be formally denounced, and that all protesters detained over the past two nights be released.

Georgia’s opposition and Western media covering the protests have characterized the foreign agents legislation as a “Russian,” “Russia-stylem” or “Putin-style” law, citing the 2012 Russian law requiring media, non-governmental organizations, and others to register as foreign agents and make their funding sources known to the public if they include contributions from foreign entities. Some media went so far as to claim the Georgian legislation signaled Tbilisi’s drift away from the European Union and toward Russia, with one article going so far as to call the social democratic, pro-EU Georgian ruling party “Putin’s Georgian Dream.”

State Department spokesman Ned Price characterized the draft law as “Kremlin-inspired” and said Washington was “deeply troubled” by it, with the legislation deemed to be “incompatible with the people of Georgia’s clear desire for European integration and its democratic development.”

European Union foreign policy chief Josep Borrell echoed these sentiments, calling the bill a “very bad development” and saying it is “incompatible with EU values and standards,” and “goes against Georgia’s stated objective of joining the European Union.”

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky also waded in to commenting on the crisis, praising Ukrainian flag-wielding protesters and saying Kiev expects Georgia and Moldova to join Ukraine in the EU.

Moscow has for the most part stayed out of commenting on the Georgian unrest, absent Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova’s remarks Wednesday pointing out that the draft law looked similar to US legislation passed in 1938 known as the Foreign Agents Registration Act, and Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov’s statement Thursday encouraging Russian nationals in Georgia to stay out of the streets.

Rules for Me But Not For Thee

Russia’s role has effectively been that of a boogieman, designed to discredit the Georgian government and foment discontent, both in Georgia and among Tbilisi’s Western partners, says Shota Apkhaidze, a political scientist serving as director of the Caucasus Center of Islamic Studies. The reality, the Tbilisi-based observer points out, is that the now-scrapped legislation bears much more resemblance to FARA than it does to Russian legislation.

“This is literally double standards, a mockery. The US brazenly adopted this same law 80 years ago, in 1938, and tightened it up repeatedly. Similar laws are in force in several countries in Europe. They tell us this law is ‘Russian,’ even though it has nothing to do with Russia. These are absolutely different things. In other words, we adopted a draft law modeled on American legislation, that’s in accordance with the Georgian Constitution and the law on non-governmental organizations. What does Russia have to do with it? What does Putin have to do with anything?” Apkhaidze asked. “This is just another reason to completely undermine the political system and bring the country to a change of power. That’s what the Americans are after,” the observer said.

Inconvenient Law

International affairs expert Viktoria Fedosova says US and EU consternation over the Georgian draft law is understandable, since it threatens to undermine their immense political power in the Caucasus nation.

“The passage of such a law in Georgia was risky for the US and the EU, since they’ve become used to engaging in their own financing, introducing their own leaders of public opinion, and working [in the country] through non-governmental organizations. This is their typical umbrella-like scheme of operations familiar to them,” Fedosova, the deputy director of the Moscow-based Institute for Strategic Studies and Forecasts at the Russian People’s Friendship University, told Sputnik in an interview.

“The Americans have spent about $1 billion on our non-governmental organizations since 1993, with the US declaring that these funds were spent on developing civil society, human rights, etc.” Apkhaidze pointed out. “That’s not the case. On the contrary, these funds have consistently been spent on fomenting a coup d’état, on the financing of some destructive elements in Georgia,” he said.

US and European “democracy promotion” assistance to Georgia has come in various forms over the decades, from the National Endowment for Democracy and the National Democratic Institute to US hedge fund billionaire George Soros’ Open Society Foundations. Each of these groups provide millions or tens of millions of dollars to Georgian NGOs annually, and wield tremendous power beyond the realm of traditional party politics, Apkhaidze says.

“The NGO sector is the strongest structure of civil institutions in Georgia, because they have massive funding. Everyone, even the current leadership of Georgia, comes from precisely these kinds of organizations and foundations,” he said. “They have immense influence.”

Cynical Approach

The US and EU’s record and history of violating Georgia’s sovereignty is no secret to anyone, but their behavior and response to this week’s violence constitutes outright “mockery” of Tbilisi, Apkhaidze says.

“Why is it that in Georgia, a person who throws a Molotov cocktail at a police officer and sets a police car on fire, hits a special forces agent in the head with a rebar and smashes the parliament building, why is he deemed ‘peaceful’ – and his protest a ‘peaceful protest’?” the observer asked, alluding to the dozens of police officers who have been injured, some hospitalized, over the past two days in clashes with demonstrators.

Fedosova thinks the answer is obvious – while the US is able to pass laws like FARA and use them liberally to monitor their media, politics, and social groups for signs of foreign influence and meddling, the same luxury is not afforded to countries like Georgia.

“The United States cannot allow this kind of sovereignty be enjoyed by tiny Georgia, which, moreover, has already been used as a destabilizing factor against Russia (we remember the situation in 2008),” she said.

‘Second Front’

The irony of the crisis over the foreign agents draft law is that the Georgian Dream government is broadly pro-European, with stated aims including entry into both the EU and NATO. Accordingly, both Apkhaidze and Fedosova believe that the crisis is related to the pragmatic foreign policy approach that Tbilisi has taken in relation to its northern neighbor, especially after the escalation of the Ukraine crisis last year.

“The Americans have spent a whole year now since the start of Russia’s ‘special operation’ in Ukraine destabilizing the situation,” trying to get Georgia to join anti-Russian sanctions and “open a second front” against Moscow, Apkhaidze said.

“The Americans know that if they manage to quickly remove Georgian Dream, a second front would be opened immediately, because those flakes who came out to protest want this war, many of them unconsciously, of course; they have no idea what such a conflict would bring. But they are so short-sighted (I mean the majority of young people involved) that they don’t understand what a war with Russia would bring. Others have the concrete goal of opening a second front. The Americans are leading the country precisely in this direction,” he said.

The Georgian government and lawmakers’ attempts to prevent Tbilisi from being pulled into a direct conflict against Russia, notwithstanding the not always rosy relations with Moscow, is precisely the reason the foreign agents law was put together in the first place, Fedosova believes, citing the fact that a handful of NGOs have garnered more financial support over the past year than all the country’s political parties combined.

“The main thing [for the government] is the guarantee of peace, some kind of fair compromise-based dialogue with Russia, without attempts to include the country in a new conflict on Russia’s borders. The main thing for them is to convey this idea of preserving sovereignty and not losing new territories, and to communicate this to their citizens,” the observer said.

Maidan Danger

Fedosova observed parallels between the footage coming out of Tbilisi this week and the Euromaidan in Kiev before the 2014 coup. “We are watching footage now from Tbilisi where young people jump and dance, where the [psychological] mechanisms for creating this kind of emotional bond of the crowd are used. We’re seeing everything we saw on the Maidan. But here the presence of external forces hasn’t yet reached the point where the American ambassador comes out and distributes cookies, for example. So far, we are seeing the manifestation of the Americans in this conflict only in the form of their official statements.”

If the situation heats up, more parallels to the Ukrainian coup could appear, she noted, including radicals in crowds, agent provocateurs, mysterious snipers, culminating in a coup and the appointment of a new puppet government and “the installation of an authoritarian president who will be called a liberal.”

“We see how this happened with Zelensky – how ‘liberal’ his regime turned out to be, and what laws were adopted when everything goes according to the American scenario, and the country is integrated into a full-fledged military confrontation with Russia…They need Georgia as another means to prick Russia, just from another flank,” Fedosova said.

President vs Parliament

In the course of her official visit to the US this week, Georgian President Salome Zourabichvili appeared against the backdrop of the Statue of Liberty to express support for the protesters. “I am by your side. Today you represent free Georgia. Georgia, which sees its future in Europe, will not allow anyone to take away this future,” Zourabichvili said.

Apkhaidze doesn’t find anything surprising about the Georgian president’s behavior, saying the French-born politician is simply serving the interests of her masters, and that her sympathies for the opposition have long been evident.

“Georgia is a parliamentary republic. I don’t think that will change. This is not the first time she has opposed various decisions of the Georgian leadership and parliament… As far as Zourabichvili is concerned, she, of course serves the interests, first of fall, of her masters. I can’t figure out whether she’s the president of Georgia or the governor of some American state. But it is a fact that she wants more power, and sees herself in the place of [Georgian Prime Minister Irakli] Garibashvili,” Apkhaidze summed up.

March 9, 2023 Posted by | Corruption | , , | 1 Comment

Claims the unvaccinated were at higher risk of hospitalisation and death were based on deliberately murky record keeping

Again, another statistical illusion of efficacy was manufactured by simple miscategorisation

By Norman Fenton | Where are the numbers? | March 7, 2023

By late 2021 it was already clear in the UK that the covid vaccines did not stop infection or transmission. And there were also already plenty of concerning safety signals. So, even though the “vaccine pass” was then required in the UK to participate in daily life, ‘vaccine hesitancy’ was on the increase.

Switching narrative to counter vaccine ‘hesitancy’

Given this increasing resistance against the vaccine programme, the official messaging was changed from “vaccines stop you getting covid” to “vaccines stop you being hospitalised and dying from covid”.

To push this new narrative the Government started pumping out ‘data’ to support the claim that almost all of those ill in hospital with covid were unvaccinated. Here is an NHS text that was sent to everybody registered with a GP in the UK in November 2021:

Vast majority of those vaccinated were not “fully vaccinated”

At the time the text was sent out, “fully vaccinated” in the UK was defined as: “at least 14 days since 3rd jab” or “between at least 14 days and less than 6 months of 2nd jab”. So, the official figure of 8 out of 10 “not fully vaccinated” might have been right but was totally misleading since almost ALL of those who were vaccinated (i.e., had at least one jab) at that time were “not fully vaccinated”.

This creates a false semantic equivalence between ‘unvaccinated’ and ‘not fully vaccinated’.

Many media sources, including the BBC, pushed the 80% unvaccinated claim without even mentioning the ‘fully vaccinated’ criteria:

Claims for covid deaths and patients in ICUs

Similar claims were made about covid deaths among the vaccinated such as this one in the Independent :

and this one in the Guardian :

With respect to patients in ICU claims that high proportions of those with covid were unvaccinated were widely cited – and never challenged – in the mainstream media:

Ludicrous unverifiable claims pushed as facts

A particularly serious example was the ludicrous claim made in the BBC documentary “Unvaccinated” by Dr Mehool Patel (Consultant, University Hospital Lewisham). His statement – unchallenged in the programme – was:

“We looked at about 550 patients that were admitted in our trust between the 15th December and 15th January 2022, which in effect would mean that most if not all of them were through due to Omicron variant, and of that there were unfortunately 21 patients who had to be admitted to intensive care who were the most severe patients due to COVID. Of the 21 I’m afraid 20 of them were unvaccinated, that’s 95%.

Just one person was vaccinated. And of the 21 who were on the unit, I’m afraid unfortunately seven of them didn’t make it, all of them were unvaccinated, 100%. So that’s one figure to just illustrate the point.”

This was one of the many specific pieces of misinformation that I raised in my formal complaint to the BBC about the programme. I asked the BBC to provide the verified data to support this claim. When I eventually received a response from the BBC’s Complaints Director Jeremy Hayes he said:

“You maintain that this claim was “either false/exaggerated or an unbelievable outlier”.

I have approached the programme makers for information about the data which were quoted by Dr Patel. I have been advised that the figures were compiled by Dr Patel himself for the purposes of research.

“Lewisham and Greenwich Hospital Trust does not record the vaccination status of patients in ICU so Dr Patel’s figures cannot independently be verified.”

Deliberately murky record keeping used to manipulate data

But the scam was based on something even more ludicrous than classifying “not fully vaccinated” as “unvaccinated”.

As a result of Freedom of Information Requests sent to some individual NHS trusts we now know that some hospitals were using the NIMS system to classify vaccine status of patients while others were using their own systems. This meant that, in many cases even if a patient had a vaccination record in NIMS, if the patient was not vaccinated in that particular hospital/Trust they were recorded as unvaccinated. Some hospitals were using a mixture of both systems (NIMS where a death was recorded and an internal system where a covid case was recorded). For those relying on NIMS, since it was not operational until June 2021, all deaths within the hospital would have had an unknown vaccination status between Jan-June 2021. The problem is that some hospitals were classifying “unknown” as “unvaccinated”.

So, deliberately murky record keeping was used to manipulate the data.

To see the implications of this, here are the data on hospital deaths (all deaths, not just covid) from the start of the vaccine programme until the end of 2021 from an undisclosed NHS trust who responded to an FOI request:

Note that every death up until 21 June 2021 was recorded as unvaccinated simply because hospitals in this Trust were using the NIMS system for classifying deaths which was not up and running until then. But, of course, an unknown number (probably most) of these 742 people were vaccinated.

There are plenty of other anomalies in the data. Note the improbable, sudden and dramatic trend changes:

  1. A steady decline in “unvaccinated” deaths from 21 June until 13 Sept. In week ending 13 Sept only 4 out of 46 (less than 9%) were unvaccinated.
  2. The next week (20 Sept) the unvaccinated are suddenly the majority again with 21 out of 31 deaths (68%), and this increases so quickly that just 3 weeks later (11 Oct) all 44 deaths (100%) are ‘unvaccinated’.
  3. But then we get a sudden and rapid decline in the unvaccinated deaths. Just 2 weeks later (25 Oct) the unvaccinated are 13 out of 47 deaths (28%) and by 20 Dec none of 53 deaths (0%) were unvaccinated.

Such changes can only be the result of changes in definition of who should be classified as unvaccinated.

It is easy to see how the Government could cherry pick this kind of data to present the narrative they wanted. When the text messages were being sent out in November 2021 it is reasonable to assume that they were using the cumulative data up to, say, mid-October. Then using the data in the table up to and including 18 Oct 2021 we count:

  • 1051 “unvaccinated” (including 17 with just a single jab)
  • 370 “vaccinated” (with 2 jabs).

That gives 74% of all hospital deaths classified as “unvaccinated”.

But this is all an illusion. In fact, counting just the final three weeks of the data (6-20 Dec), just 18 out of the 144 deaths (12.5%) were unvaccinated.

It is also worth noting that the same NHS Trust provided the following information on “new COVID positives” in its hospitals between 19th Jan 2021 and 19th Jan 2022.

Given what we know about national vaccination take-up rates, and this Trust’s own death data, it is likely that the majority of those classified as ‘unvaccinated’ here would have been vaccinated (with the exception of those in the 0-20 age categories the vast majority of whom would not have been eligible for vaccination).

So, instead of the ‘50% of new covid cases’ being among the unvaccinated – the ‘official’ narrative pushed from this data – the true narrative should have been that the vast majority of new covid cases were vaccinated.

Why does this matter?

It matters a lot because, despite being completely bogus, these kinds of ludicrous figures were so consistently repeated that the message “vaccines stop you being hospitalised and dying from covid (even if they don’t stop infection and transmission)” was almost universally accepted. Even the strongest critics of the Government’s covid response consistently repeated this mantra:

The figures were also used as the basis for the bogus studies claiming millions of lives were saved by the vaccine.

So, yet again, we can see that statistical data was used to create an illusion of vaccine hospitalisation and mortality efficacy by the simplest of means: deliberately murky record keeping ensuring that the vaccinated get recategorized as unvaccinated when they die or are hospitalised.

Update 9 March 2023: Here is a video I made covering this article:

Postscript: A commenter below reports that the USA “was far worse”:

Patients who were vaccinated at pharmacies didn’t show up on the state records. The CDC admitted on a web page that ‘unvaccinated’ just meant they couldn’t find a vax on record. There was no requirement for hospitals to update records and why would they? This bias was described by hospital PA Deborah Conrad in the Highwire episode 233 Alex Berenson reports evidence that the rate of overcounting of ‘unvaccinated’ patients was as high as 20x. “More evidence that American data may badly overstate the protection mRNA shots offer against hospitalization from Covid” – Jan 13

March 9, 2023 Posted by | Deception, Science and Pseudo-Science | , , , | Leave a comment

Twitter Files expose ‘censorship-industrial complex’ – journalist

RT | March 9, 2023

Social media platforms colluded with non-governmental organizations and the US government to suppress information they did not like in the name of fighting “disinformation,” journalist Matt Taibbi testified at a congressional hearing on Thursday.

Taibbi appeared alongside Michael Shellenberger, another journalist who has covered the “Twitter Files” for the past several months, before the Select Subcommittee on the Weaponization of the Federal Government, led by Congressman Jim Jordan, a Republican from Ohio.

Taibbi described what he called the “censorship-industrial complex,” calling it “a bureaucracy willing to sacrifice factual truth in service of broader narrative objectives,” and the exact opposite of a free press envisioned in the US Constitution.

Right before his testimony, Taibbi also published a lengthy thread on Twitter, laying out the evidence he entered into the congressional record.

According to Taibbi, Twitter acted “more like a partner” to the government, censoring based on requests it received from federal agencies as well as taxpayer-backed NGOs. Intelligence agencies, dubious “disinformation researchers” and corporate executives effectively worked as a team, he argued.

Taibbi’s thread described an “incestuous self-appointed truth squad moving from law enforcement/intelligence to the private sector and back,” with the same agencies inviting the same “experts” funded by the same foundations and covered by the same reporters to every panel and every conference.

He identified the key players in the censorship-industrial complex as the National Endowment for Democracy, the Atlantic Council’s DFR Lab, and the Alliance for Securing Democracy, authors of the infamous Hamilton 68 dashboard. Many of the NGOs involved received funding from the US government, while legacy media outlets acted as their proxies, demanding censorship.

Taibbi described the Stanford Internet Observatory (SIO) and its “Election Integrity Partnership” – renamed the Virality Project after the 2020 election – as “perhaps the ultimate example of the absolute fusion of state, corporate, and civil society organizations.” By its own admission, it labeled 22 million tweets during the 2020 election campaign, and was then given access to Twitter’s JIRA ticketing system, which is able to tackle 50 million tweets a day.

SIO is run by Renee DiResta, who helped design Hamilton68 and worked at New Knowledge – a group caught creating fake “Russian bots” to help Democrats in the 2017 Alabama special election for the US Senate. That did not stop them from advising the Senate Intelligence Committee on “Russian interference” in US elections, and the US legacy media from not questioning any of their conclusions.

“Packaged as a bulwark against lies and falsehood, [the CIC] is itself often a major source of disinformation, with American taxpayers funding their own estrangement from reality,” Taibbi wrote. “Without real oversight mechanisms, there is nothing to prevent these super-empowered information vanguards from bending the truth for their own ends.”

During the hearing, multiple Democrats tried to pressure Taibbi into revealing his sources, insinuating Twitter’s new owner, Elon Musk, was behind the disclosures.

March 9, 2023 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Deception, Full Spectrum Dominance, Russophobia | , , | Leave a comment

Don’t Believe The Geniuses Claiming To Know Our Energy Future

By Francis Menton | Manhattan Contrarian | February 26, 2023

“Stranded assets.” You know what those are. Probably you’ve read a hundred or more articles over the past few years confidently proclaiming that oil and gas fields and coal mines owned by large energy companies will soon become worthless, as production of energy shifts to “cleaner” and “cheaper” things like wind and solar. The owners of the fossil fuel properties won’t be able to sell them for even a dollar. The assets will thus be “stranded.”

The “stranded assets” predictions unsurprisingly come from the same crowd who are also ordering up the electric car future. For just a tiny sample of recent pieces making the stranded assets point, check out this from Nature Climate Change, May 26, 2022 (“The transition to a global low-carbon economy entails . . . the fast phase-out of fossil-fuel production, which will necessitate the write-down of major, functioning capital assets and reserves reflected as assets on fossil energy companies’ balance sheets.”); or this from MIT News, August 19, 2022 (“As the world transitions away from greenhouse-gas-emitting activities, . . . fossil fuel companies and their investors face growing financial risks (known as transition risks), including the prospect of ending up with massive stranded assets.”); or from the Guardian, November 4, 2021 (“Half world’s fossil fuel assets could become worthless by 2036 in net zero transition.”).

If you are thinking of buying in to any of that, you might enjoy the frankly hilarious piece by Michael Lynch, titled “A Cautionary Tale For Oil Companies’ Navigating The Transition.” The piece has a date of November 2022, but is linked at RealClearEnergy today.

Lynch’s piece is somewhat long (14 pages), and filled with decades’-old super-confident predictions of our energy future, all of which failed. I’ll give you just a sample:

  • Rawleigh Warner, CEO of Mobil, 1977: “The oil business has come to maturity, and with this maturity comes a new set of challenges… oil companies have no other choice. They must diversify or go the way of the buggy-whip makers.”

  • Standard & Poors, 1980: “Diversification [by oil majors] into alternative energy fields should offer promising new opportunities for increasing profitability.”

  • Standard & Poors, 1984: “Diversification out of the oil business has been disastrous for most of the majors…”

  • Ford Chairman William Clay Ford, Jr., 2000: “I believe fuel cells will finally end the 100-year reign of the internal combustion engine . . . Fuel cells could be the predominant automotive power source in 25 years.”

  • Jurgen Schrempp, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler-Chrysler said the company would be a market leader and later predicted sales of 100,000 hydrogen fuel cell vehicles in 2005.

  • Lynch on hydrogen fuel cell vehicles: “[T]oday, a quarter century later, sales are in the four figures.”

  • Senator Richard Lugar and R. James Woolsey, 1999: “Cellulosic ethanol is a first-class transportation fuel, able to power the cars of today as well as tomorrow, use the vast infrastructure already built for gasoline, and enter quickly and easily into the transportation system.”

  • Lynch on cellulosic ethanol: “[C]urrent production of cellulosic ethanol is so low data is not reported by the government.”

It goes on and on from there. There’s one very safe bet on the energy future, and that is that the utopian dreams of would-be central planners will fail. The $300-400 billion of subsidies said to be in the “Inflation Reduction Act” for “renewable” energies is not nearly enough to enable those things to prevail over fossil fuels in the market for energy. The energy supply will inexorably move to whatever best supplies consumer needs at the lowest cost.

March 9, 2023 Posted by | Economics, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity, Timeless or most popular | Leave a comment

Did US raise a false flag on Nord Stream blasts?


Investigative reporter Seymour Hersh said an odd thing on March 7 when TASS asked him to compare his version of the Nord Stream 1 and 2 pipeline explosions (US Navy divers did it, he had reported February 8) with a newly released version from the New York Times and German media that points to non-governmental Ukrainians as culprits.

“I don’t want to get into it,” Hersh replied to the Russian wire service. “You should decide for yourself. It’s up to you.” The TASS reporter persisted, asking if Hersh thought the New York Times account had come in response to Hersh’s own investigation. He gave the same reply, saying people should come to their own conclusions.

That was pretty clever. Read both versions and you may conclude that they could fit together to point to a plausible account of how, as war raged over Ukraine, three pipelines supplying Germany’s gas supply from Russia were blown up before Vladimir Putin could use their existence to try to lure Germany out of the pro-Ukraine camp. Before the war, over half of Germany’s gas imports came from Russia.

Assemble a whole from the two versions and you might come up with this: On US President Joe Biden’s orders, US government covert types put together and with Norwegian help carried out the operation (that’s Hersh’s story); to avoid detection, they left some clues pointing elsewhere, to Ukrainians or “pro-Ukrainians” – the main clue mentioned so far being that the yacht from which the divers worked could be traced back to a yacht-rental company in Poland, a company owned by Ukrainians.

The German media account

What you might end up suspecting is a false flag.

Die Zeit, a leading German newspaper that is part of a media investigative consortium that talked with officials in several countries to put together its narrative, acknowledges the possibility thusly: “Even if traces lead to Ukraine, the investigators have not yet been able to find out who commissioned the suspected group of perpetrators. In international security circles, it is not ruled out that it could also be a false flag operation.”

The paper hastens to add that investigators “have apparently not found evidence that confirms such a scenario.” But “the nationalities of the perpetrators are apparently unclear” since they used “professionally forged passports.”

Die Zeit narrows the gang down to “a team of six people. It is said to have been five men and one woman.” Functionally, they were “a captain, two divers, two diving assistants and a doctor.”

Like the New York Times, the German media outlets suggest that the demolition crew consisted of  Ukrainian civilians from a non-governmental “commando” force opposed to the Russian invasion.

There’s no point in asking for a smoking gun at this point. His critics point out that Hersh – who has acknowledged he opposed NATO expansion into the former Soviet Union and who is not known to be a fan of allied efforts to help Ukraine fight the war – based his own account on a single unnamed US government source. Likewise, the German media organizations that make up the investigative consortium name no sources.

Die Zeit reports that “a Western secret service is said to have sent a tip to European partner services in the autumn, shortly after the destruction,” talking about Ukrainian commando responsibility for the destruction. “After that, there are said to have been further intelligence indications that a pro-Ukrainian group could be responsible.”

A Kremlin spokesperson on March 8 was having none of it, telling journalists that “Western media reports which exonerate NATO state actors from involvement in the explosions that ruptured the Nord Stream 1 and 2 gas pipelines have the hallmarks of a synchronized misinformation campaign.”

The Hersh version

Hersh’s version is that US Navy divers, “operating under the cover of a widely publicized mid-summer NATO exercise known as BALTOPS 22, planted the remotely triggered explosives that, three months later, destroyed three of the four Nord Stream pipelines, according to a source with direct knowledge of the operational planning.”

Remarkable for its detail, the Hersh account claims that “Biden’s decision to sabotage the pipelines came after more than nine months of highly secret back-and-forth debate inside Washington’s national security community about how to best achieve that goal. For much of that time, the issue was not whether to do the mission, but how to get it done with no overt clue as to who was responsible.”

The debate and preparations proceeded from December 2021 when Russia was marshaling its troops, preparing to strike Ukraine from Belarus and Crimea, Hersh writes. “As long as Europe remained dependent on the pipelines for cheap natural gas, Washington was afraid that countries like Germany would be reluctant to supply Ukraine with the money and weapons it needed to defeat Russia,” he notes.

The interagency task force thus assembled “was initially skeptical of the CIA’s enthusiasm for a covert deep-sea attack. There were too many unanswered questions. The waters of the Baltic Sea were heavily patrolled by the Russian navy, and there were no oil rigs that could be used as cover for a diving operation,” Hersh writes.

“‘It would be a goat fuck,’ the agency was told. Throughout ‘all of this scheming,’ the source said, ‘some working guys in the CIA and the State Department were saying, “Don’t do this. It’s stupid and will be a political nightmare if it comes out.”’

“Nevertheless, in early 2022, the CIA working group reported back to [national security adviser Jake] Sullivan’s interagency group: ‘We have a way to blow up the pipelines.’ What came next was stunning. On February 7, less than three weeks before the seemingly inevitable Russian invasion of Ukraine, Biden met in his White House office with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, who, after some wobbling, was now firmly on the American team. At the press briefing that followed, Biden defiantly said, ‘If Russia invades … there will be no longer a Nord Stream 2. We will bring an end to it.’”

Undersecretary of State Victoria Nuland gave a similar warning, Hersh says, and lower-ranking officials were concerned by what they viewed as their seniors’ indiscretion.

The operation was headquartered in Norway, whose navy, Hersh says,

was quick to find the right spot, in the shallow waters of the Baltic sea a few miles off Denmark’s Bornholm Island. The pipelines ran more than a mile apart along a seafloor that was only 260 feet deep. That would be well within the range of the divers, who, operating from a Norwegian Alta-class mine hunter, would dive with a mixture of oxygen, nitrogen and helium streaming from their tanks, and plant shaped C4 charges on the four pipelines with concrete protective covers. It would be tedious, time consuming and dangerous work, but the waters off Bornholm had another advantage: there were no major tidal currents, which would have made the task of diving much more difficult.

As cover, Hersh writes, the Americans had Sixth Fleet planners add to the annual naval maneuvers, already scheduled for that time and place, a research and development exercise involving “NATO teams of divers planting mines, with competing teams using the latest underwater technology to find and destroy them… The C4 explosives would be in place by the end of BALTOPS22.”

After a decent interval of three months,

on September 26, 2022, a Norwegian Navy P8 surveillance plane made a seemingly routine flight and dropped a sonar buoy. The signal spread underwater, initially to Nord Stream 2 and then on to Nord Stream 1. A few hours later, the high-powered C4 explosives were triggered and three of the four pipelines were put out of commission…

In the immediate aftermath of the pipeline bombing, the American media treated it like an unsolved mystery. Russia was repeatedly cited as a likely culprit, spurred on by calculated leaks from the White House – but without ever establishing a clear motive for such an act of self-sabotage, beyond simple retribution… No major American newspaper dug into the earlier threats to the pipelines made by Biden and Undersecretary of State Nuland.

Fact-checkers and Hersh

Critics found what they said were some errors in Hersh’s version. Here is Wikipedia on that:

Hersh wrote that NATO General Secretary Jens Stoltenberg had been cooperating with US intelligence services since the Vietnam War and has been cleared ever since. At the time the Vietnam War ended, Stoltenberg was 16 years old, and he had participated during the peak of the Anti-Vietnam War demonstrations in Norway. In 1985, Stoltenberg was part of the Workers’ Youth League in Norway, when the Labor Party was working to withdraw Norway from NATO.

Hersh’s article said the US divers who planted the explosives had operated from a Norwegian Alta-class minesweeper. The Norwegian Defence Forces said no Norwegian Alta-class mine sweepers had participated in BALTOPS 22 and were not in the vicinity of the explosions during the exercise.

Regarding Hersh’s allegations against the Norwegian P-8 Poseidon surveillance plane, Lieutenant Colonel Vegard Norstad Finberg of the Norwegian armed forces said the Norwegian P-8 Poseidon surveillance plane is a brand new plane that has never been in an operational operation, and has only flown test flights in Norwegian airspace, and has never been over the Baltic Sea…

In the German Bundestag, members of parliament from the government disputed Hersh’s credibility and urged that public discussion of the topic be minimized for security reasons; opposition members of parliament from AfD and Die Linke initiated a parliamentary debate on February 10 about Hersh’s allegations, with Die Linke MP Sevim Dağdelen arguing that the government seemed uninterested in clarifying the truth about the bombings.

If the divers’ platform wasn’t an Alta-class minesweeper, then was it a yacht rented from a Ukrainian-owned company in Poland – the vessel the German media/European intel account mentions?

The German account tells us that the saboteurs on their rented yacht proceeded to the dive location on September 6, 2022, from the German Baltic Sea port of Rostock after loading their equipment aboard there from a delivery truck. Rostok’s a long day’s sail (325 nautical miles) from Gdynia, the major Polish port on the Baltic (in case that’s where, in Poland, the Ukrainian-owned yacht rental company is situated).

The New York Times

Disclaimer here: In my 54 years in the news business, I have generally avoided asking spooks for help. I have nothing against them and realize they are colleagues of sorts, but I can recall only a couple of cases when I sought their help. They have their jobs and I have mine. I certainly don’t rush to get their version of events whenever something happens. I assume their version is whatever their agencies have told them should be their version so I prefer to spend my time getting my own version from more direct sources.

That may help to explain why the New York Times piece bothers me. The reporters – maybe the spooks are their beat and they have to get along, or else? – seem overeager to peddle Washington’s version:

Ukraine and its allies have been seen by some officials as having the most logical potential motive to attack the pipelines. They have opposed the project for years, calling it a national security threat because it would allow Russia to sell gas more easily to Europe.

I’d advise checking your wallet if you hear from your pipe-smoking spook source that “officials who have reviewed the intelligence said they believed the saboteurs were most likely Ukrainian or Russian nationals or some combination of the two. US officials said no American or British nationals were involved.”

Would you credit “US officials who have reviewed the new intelligence” and who say that “the explosives were most likely planted with the help of experienced divers who did not appear to be working for military or intelligence services”?

After all that Seymour Hersh has told you?

Well, at least they have a policy at the New York Times permitting them to emulate Seymour Hersh (born 1937, a real veteran with a record) and stick to anonymous sources:

Do the sources know the information? What’s their motivation for telling us? Have they proved reliable in the past? Can we corroborate the information? Even with these questions satisfied, The Times uses anonymous sources as a last resort. The reporter and at least one editor know the identity of the source.

Whew. What a relief.

Bradley K Martin is a veteran foreign correspondent.

March 9, 2023 Posted by | Deception, False Flag Terrorism, War Crimes | , , | 1 Comment

The US military plans to use deep fakes and take over appliances for propaganda

By Rachel Marsden | RT | March 9, 2023

Can you create cutting edge “deep fake” videos, spy on people using household appliances, and make massive data dragnets? If so, the Pentagon wants to hear from you so it can amp up its manipulation efforts.

US Special Operations Command (US SOCOM) has issued proposal requests for a whole host of dodgy services, according to new documents obtained by The Intercept.

Specifically, the Pentagon is looking for “next generation capability to ‘takeover’ Internet of Things (IoT) devices in order to collect data and information from local populaces to enable a breakdown of what messaging might be popular and accepted through sifting of data once received.”

For what purpose? “This would enable MISO [Military Information Support Operations] to craft and promote messages that may be more readily received by the local populace in relevant peer/near peer environments,” according to the document.

Despite publicly obsessing over others’ foreign interference and propaganda, Washington is now openly admitting that it is actively seeking these new technologies for its own “influence operations, digital deception, communication disruption, and disinformation campaigns at the tactical edge and operational levels.”  You know, exactly the same kind of thing, over which it drums up fear as a threat to freedom and democracy among the general public.

Earlier this year, a Washington-based advisory firm OODA published a report warning that Chinese-made household items could not only be spying on you, but basically fronting for the Chinese government. The report’s author called for the British government to act on claims that Chinese-made Internet of Things appliances, and even car components, can collect and transmit data through cellular 5G networks to Chinese companies, which could then be ordered to pass it on to the government. The story was hysterically splashed across British media.

OODA describes itself as a “global strategic advisory firm with deep DNA in global security, technology and intelligence issues.” The genetics run deep, indeed: straight to the Pentagon and Western intelligence communities where its executives, experts and advisers have past or current working relationships.

So now it looks like calls to ban Chinese household appliances for their spying potential have turned into Washington wanting to get in on the action by obtaining the best possible front row seat as you stand in front of your refrigerator at midnight, chugging chocolate milk straight from the carton.

The Pentagon also wants to be able to create “deep fake” videos that can realistically portray fake events as real, in an attempt to manipulate the target viewer(s). Or, as the Pentagon puts it, to “generate messages and influence operations via non-traditional channels in relevant peer/near peer environments.” It’s hard to imagine a more glaring example of actual fake news, yet the Pentagon wants to produce it in the way that Netflix makes movies and TV shows.

Finally, the Pentagon says that they want to get their hands on “a next generation capability to collect disparate data through public and open source information streams such as social media, local media, etc. to enable MISO to craft and direct influence operations and messages in relevant peer/near peer environments.”

Some might be tempted to just shrug this off as conventional practice because, when the military is tracking down bad guys, they’re obviously going to want to use every possible tool available at their disposal – and constantly seek to expand that tool box. But recent evidence suggests that military-grade collection and subversion tools targeting online and conventional information platforms have largely been turned on the average citizen for the purpose of protecting the establishment and its various narratives from dissent rather than for reasons of national security.

Last December, for example, Twitter CEO Elon Musk worked with a journalist to reveal the collusion between US government authorities and the social media platform to manipulate and censor public debate over the Covid-19 pandemic. According to internal Twitter documents, one of the first meetings that the Biden Administration requested with Twitter executives was on the topic of Covid vaccines and specific high-profile accounts that deviated from the official narrative. According to the journalist, David Zweig, “Twitter did suppress views – many from doctors and scientific experts – that conflicted with the official positions of the White House. As a result, legitimate findings and questions that would have expanded the public debate went missing.” He added that, “With Covid, this bias bent heavily toward establishment dogmas,” and cited examples of various experts, including prominent epidemiologists, whose views were censored as a result of being qualified by the Twitter staff as Covid “misinformation.”

Earlier this year, a British whistleblower also revealed that critics of Covid-19-related lockdowns and vaccine mandates – including prominent journalists and politicians – were monitored by the UK army’s information warfare brigade. The 77th Brigade, created in 2015 and described by the media at the time as composed of “warriors who don’t just carry weapons, but who are also skilled in using social media such as Twitter and Facebook, and the dark arts of ‘psyops’”.

The Canadian military was also caught using propaganda techniques honed on the battlefield in Afghanistan to shape the Covid debate by boosting the government’s narrative and attempting to head off any civil unrest over the harsh mandates.

The Pentagon’s latest wish list raises concerns that these tools will also be deployed on average Americans or Westerners for purposes of control and manipulation. Last September, the Pentagon vowed to review its secret psyops, but only after public outrage when a group of researchers suggested collusion between US government entities and American online platforms like Twitter and Facebook to control online narratives with fake accounts. Was the lesson learned to stop deploying psyops on average citizens? Or was it just to do a better job of keeping it secret?

Not that there’s any shortage of Western establishment cheerleaders demanding even more psychological manipulation efforts by the US government, if only to counter “disinformation” from foreign adversaries.

It seems that we’ve now come to the point where sticking it to Russia and China means actively cheerleading the increasingly militarized efforts by our self-styled defenders of freedom and democracy to brainwash their own people.

March 9, 2023 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Deception, Full Spectrum Dominance | , , , | 1 Comment

In Nord Stream attack, US officials use proxy media to blame proxy Ukraine

One month after Seymour Hersh reported that the US blew up the Nord Stream pipelines, US regime finds a scapegoat in Ukraine and stenographers in the NYT.

By Aaron Maté | March 8, 2023

Nearly six months after the Nord Stream pipelines exploded and one month after Seymour Hersh reported that the Biden administration was responsible, US officials have unveiled their defense. According to the New York Times, anonymous government sources claim that “newly collected intelligence” now “suggests” that the Nord Stream bomber was in fact a “pro-Ukrainian group.”

The only confirmed “intelligence” about this supposed “group” is that US officials have none to offer about them.

“U.S. officials said there was much they did not know about the perpetrators and their affiliations,” The Times reports. The supposed “newly collected” information “does not specify the members of the group, or who directed or paid for the operation.” Despite knowing nothing about them, the Times’ sources nonetheless speculate that “the saboteurs were most likely Ukrainian or Russian nationals, or some combination of the two.” They also leave open “the possibility that the operation might have been conducted off the books by a proxy force with connections to the Ukrainian government or its security services.” (emphasis added)

When no evidence is produced, anything is of course “possible.” But the Times’ sources are oddly certain on one critical matter: “U.S. officials said no American or British nationals were involved.” Also, there is “no evidence President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine or his top lieutenants were involved in the operation, or that the perpetrators were acting at the direction of any Ukrainian government officials.”

Despite failing to obtain any concrete information about the perpetrators, the Times nonetheless declares that the US cover story planted in their pages “amounts to the first significant known lead about who was responsible for the attack on the Nord Stream pipelines.”

It is unclear why the Times has deemed their evidence-free “lead” to be “significant”, and not, by contrast, the Hersh story that came four weeks earlier. Not only does Hersh’s reporting predate the Times’, but his story contained extensive detail about how the US planned and executed the Nord Stream explosions.

Tellingly, the Times distorts the basis for Hersh’s reporting. “In making his case,” the Times claims, Hersh merely “cited” President Biden’s “preinvasion threat to ‘bring an end’ to Nord Stream 2, and similar statements by other senior U.S. officials.” In falsely suggesting that he relied solely on public statements, the Times completely omits that Hersh in fact cited a well-placed source.

By contrast, the Times has no information about its newfound perpetrators or about any other aspect of its “significant” lead.

“U.S. officials declined to disclose the nature of the intelligence, how it was obtained or any details of the strength of the evidence it contains,” The Times states. Accordingly, US officials admit that “there are no firm conclusions” to be drawn, and that there are “enormous gaps in what U.S. spy agencies and their European partners knew about what transpired.” For that apparent reason, “U.S. officials who have been briefed on the intelligence are divided about how much weight to put on the new information.” The Times, by contrast, apparently feels no such evidentiary burden.

In sum, US officials have “much they did not know about the perpetrators” – i.e. everything; “enormous gaps” in their awareness of how the (unknown) “pro-Ukraine group” purportedly carried out a deep-sea bombing; uncertainty over “how much weight to put on” their “intelligence”; and even “no firm conclusions” to offer. Moreover, all of this supposed US “intelligence” happens to have been “newly collected” — after one of the most accomplished journalists in history published a detailed report on how US intelligence plotted and conducted the bombing.

Given the absence of evidence and curious timing, a reasonable conclusion is not that a Ukrainian “proxy force” was the culprit, but that the US is now using its Ukrainian proxy as a scapegoat.

As the standard bearer of establishment US media, the Times’ “reporting” is perfectly in character. Days after the September 2022 bombing of the Nord Stream gas pipelines, the Times noted that “much of the speculation about responsibility has focused on Russia” – just as US officials would certainly hope. The narrative was echoed by former CIA Director John Brennan, who opined that “Russia certainly is the most likely suspect,” in the Nord Stream attack. Citing anonymous “Western intelligence officials”, CNN claimed that “European security officials observed Russian Navy ships in vicinity of Nord Stream pipeline leaks,” thus casting “further suspicion on Russia,” which is seen by “European and US officials as the only actor in the region believed to have both the capability and motivation to deliberately damage the pipelines.”

With the story that Russia blew up its own pipelines no longer tenable, the Times’ new narrative asks us to believe that some unnamed “pro-Ukraine group”, which “did not appear to be working for military or intelligence services” somehow managed to obtain the unique capability to plant multiple explosives on a heavily sealed pipeline at the bottom of the Baltic Sea.

That narrative is already being laundered through the German media. Hours after the Times story broke, the German outlet Die Zeit came out with a story, sourced to German officials, that claims the bombing operation was carried out by a group of six people, including just “two divers.” These supposed perpetrators, we are told, arrived at the crime scene via a yacht “apparently owned by two Ukrainians” that departed Germany. How a yacht managed to carry the equipment and explosives needed for the operation is left unexplained.

The saboteurs somehow possessed the capability to carry out a deep-sea bombing, but not the awareness to properly clean up their floating crime scene. According to Die Zeit, the boat was “returned to the owner in an uncleaned condition,” which allowed “investigators” to discover “traces of explosives on the table in the cabin.” Should this lean “pro-Ukraine” crack team of naval commandos conduct another act of deep-sea sabotage, they will only need to hire a cleaning professional to get away with it.

As for motivation, we are somehow also asked to forget that Biden administration officials not only expressed the motivation, but the post-facto satisfaction. “If Russia invades Ukraine, one way or another Nord Stream 2 will not move forward,” senior US official Victoria Nuland vowed in January 2022. President Biden added the following month that “if Russia invades… there will be no longer a Nord Stream 2. We will bring an end to it.” After the Nord Stream pipelines were bombed, Secretary of State Antony Blinken greeted the news as a “tremendous strategic opportunity.” Just days before Hersh’s story was published, Nuland informed Congress that both she and the White House are “very gratified” that Nord Stream is “a hunk of metal at the bottom of the sea.”

Not only are global audiences asked to ignore the public statements of Biden administration principals, but their blanket refusal to answer any questions. This was put on display in Washington this past weekend, when German Chancellor Olaf Scholz paid Biden a White House visit. Unlike Scholz’s last DC trip, there was no joint news conference. This was understandable: the last time they appeared together, Biden blurted out that he would “bring an end” to Nord Stream, leaving Scholz to stand next to him in awkward silence. This time around, the two briefly sat before a group of reporters who were quickly shooed out of the room, much to Biden’s apparent glee.

Inadvertently, the Times’ account exposes new holes in the failed attempts to refute Hersh’s story.

Members of the NATO state-funded website Bellingcatfalsely presented to NATO state audiences as an independent investigative outlet, have attempted to cast doubt on Hersh’s claims by arguing that open-source tracking at the time of the bombing fails to detect the vessels he reported on. But as the Times story notes, investigators are seeking information about ships “whose location transponders were not on or were not working when they passed through the area, possibly to cloak their movements.” Hersh has made this same point in interviews, noting that when Biden flew into Poland before his visit to Kiev last month, his “plane switched off its transponder” to avoid detection, as the Associated Press reported. Unfortunately for self-styled digital sherlocks, major international crimes – particularly those involving intelligence agencies – cannot be solved from their laptops.

Hersh was also pilloried for citing a single anonymous source. The Times’ story, by contrast, relies on multiple anonymous sources, who, unlike Hersh, have no tangible information to offer. After ignoring Hersh’s story for a full month, the Times’ news section was forced to acknowledge it for the first time. And the best that its anonymous sources could come up with is not only an evidence-free, caveat-filled narrative, but a story that does not challenge a single aspect of Hersh’s detailed account.

In another contrast, Hersh is one of the most accomplished and impactful journalists in the history of the profession. Two of the journalists on the Times story, Julian E. Barnes and Adam Goldman, have bylined multiple stories that spread demonstrable falsehoods sourced to anonymous US officials.

In the summer of 2020, Barnes and Goldman were among the Times journalists who laundered CIA disinformation that Russia was paying bounties for dead US troops in Afghanistan. When the Biden administration was forced to acknowledge that the allegation was baseless, the Times tried to water down its initial claims in an attempt to save face.

In January, Barnes co-wrote a Times story which claimed, citing unnamed “U.S. officials” more than a dozen times, that “Russian military intelligence officers” were behind “a recent letter bomb campaign in Spain whose most prominent targets were the prime minister, the defense minister and foreign diplomats.” But days later, as the Washington Post reported, Spanish authorities arrested “a 74-year-old Spaniard who opposed his country’s support for Ukraine but appears to have acted alone.” (Moon of Alabama is one the few voices to have called out the Times’ fraudulent reporting).

That same month, Goldman shared a byline, alongside fellow “Russian bounties” stenographer Charlie Savage, on a Times story which argued that Special Counsel John Durham has “failed to find wrongdoing in the origins of the Russia inquiry,” even though Durham’s findings have yet to be released. As I reported for Real Clear Investigations, the Times made its case by omitting countervailing information and distorting the available facts – as is the norm for establishment media coverage of Russiagate.

The US officials behind the Times’ latest Nord Stream tale presumably believe that they have offered the best counter to Hersh that they could. That it is devoid of concrete information, and written by Times staffers with a track record of parroting US intelligence-furnished propaganda, ultimately has the opposite effect.

The Times’ narrative can only be seen as further confirmation that Hersh found the Nord Stream bomber in Washington. That explains why anonymous US officials are now using proxies in establishment media to scapegoat their proxy in Ukraine.

Watch or listen to my recent interview with Seymour Hersh here.

March 9, 2023 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, False Flag Terrorism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , | 1 Comment

Colonel McGregor: ‘Russia is crushing the Kiev regime’

By Drago Bosnic | March 9, 2023

Colonel Douglas McGregor doesn’t need a lot of introduction to people aware of the current geopolitical situation, as his actions, integrity and wisdom speak for themselves. Unfortunately, such cadres are now almost entirely absent from Washington DC, particularly the Pentagon. They have been replaced by a plethora of post-Cold War neoconservatives and neoliberals intended on not just maintaining the so-called Pax Americana, but also extending it to essentially every corner of the planet. In his latest interview with “Real America’s” Dan Ball, Colonel McGregor gave an assessment of the current state of the Kiev regime forces, as well as their prospects in the coming weeks and months.

After the anchor gave a brief breakdown of the disastrous state of the United States under the troubled Biden administration, he touched on the subject of ever-escalating military “aid” the Washington DC has been sending to the embattled Neo-Nazi junta in hopes of stopping Russia from finally inflicting a crushing defeat on them. He pointed out that the US Congress just approved its latest “aid” package worth $400 million, pushing the publicly revealed amount to $32 billion of US taxpayer dollars for Washington DC’s favorite puppet regime, out of the $113 billion approved thus far, “with no end in sight”, as he correctly noted.

Dan Ball then assessed the meeting between Joe Biden and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, signaling the symbolic end of the very last remnants of Berlin’s sovereignty as Germany pledged to send more weapons and funds for the Neo-Nazi junta, despite the tremendous problems this is causing on the home front. Ball also pointed out the glaring hypocrisy of the political West, as NATO is publicly bragging about its involvement with the Kiev regime, including the massive weapons shipments and ISR (intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance) assets, while openly threatening China in case it sends armaments to Russia.

Aside from the fact that Beijing never made such statements, nor is there any indicator that Moscow is desperate to get help from China, it’s quite obvious the US has completely lost touch with what actual diplomacy is. The anchor also questioned the impact of the “aid” the Neo-Nazi junta is getting, but warned that it’s certainly “drawing down our existing weapons stock, which puts America in a bad spot, kind of like Biden draining our emergency oil reserves”. The last line refers to Joe Biden’s unrelenting squandering of America’s SPR (Strategic Petroleum Reserve), which has been actively (ab)used for nearly a year now, despite the fact it was founded for emergencies such as nationwide natural disasters or major wars.

After touching on the topic of sending F-16 fighter jets, the question even the Pentagon is “stingy and unsure” about, Dan Ball introduced Colonel Douglas McGregor, who immediately pointed out the staggering losses of the Kiev regime forces, “now approaching 200,000”. According to McGregor, this was largely due to the Neo-Nazi junta’s disastrous decision to defend Bakhmut (Artyomovsk), with the Russian military using the opportunity to “apply all of their rockets, missiles, artillery fire against concentrations of Ukrainian infantry, inflicting enormous casualties”. He also stated the city is going to fall anyway, making the deaths of thousands of forcibly conscripted Ukrainians all the more pointless.

McGregor also touched upon the increasingly strained relationship between the Kiev regime frontman Volodymyr Zelensky and his General Staff which is rightfully furious at him for not listening to their assessment it would’ve been better to leave the city and set up a new defense line further to the west. The colonel warned that the junta has expended most of its reserves, both in terms of equipment and manpower, while its “best soldiers are dead, so it’s now shoving boys, old men, women into the breach”. He further added that Zelensky is essentially admitting defeat and taunting the political West, specifically the US, to “come here and win the war for us,” otherwise, “it’s over”.

Once again, the anchor Dan Ball mentioned the fighter jets and how the US has essentially lied it wouldn’t provide specific weapons systems, such as advanced missiles or tanks, all of which have been delivered in the meantime (or are about to). Ball warned that the same is true for F-16s, adding that “there’s now a bipartisan push in the Congress to send the jets”, but also stated that it would take at least a year to train pilots, “prolonging the killing in Ukraine”.

Colonel McGregor responded that the US doesn’t have a military strategy, but only a media one to convince everyone that the Neo-Nazi junta is supposedly winning. As the number of those who believe this narrative has dwindled to almost nothing and as the losses are piling up, the Kiev regime is forced to use contractors, the vast majority of whom are NATO personnel, meaning that if F-16s were to be sent, they would require American/NATO pilots to fly them. McGregor warned that “this is now a slow slide into [global] war that many people have really worried about for a long time” and that the US is faced with either admitting failure or pushing for a direct confrontation with Russia.

Ball and McGregor then discussed the issue of an escalating disinformation campaign in the US media, with the colonel pointing out that Washington DC has been doing this for decades, particularly in cases when any given administration was trying to not only justify, but also praise the US aggression against the world, specifically mentioning Bosnia, Iraq and the NATO-occupied Serbian province of Kosovo and Metohia. However, McGregor stated that the media are now forced to admit that “the weight of Russian manpower, as well as their military power in general, is crushing Ukrainians”.

He added that the message to the viewers is that “no amount of Ukrainian valor is going to stand up to [Russian] firepower” and people need to read between the lines and that “the message is – Ukraine can’t win”. The colonel further pointed out the Biden administration is certainly aware of this, with the recent Blinken-Lavrov meeting on the sidelines of the G20 summit in India perfectly illustrating it. McGregor thinks that “our threats don’t ring with much credibility” and that this behavior “puts everything at risk, including the United States“. However, the Biden administration is worried about its political future, so it’s refusing to admit the reality and finally come to an agreement that would take Russia’s security concerns into account.

Drago Bosnic is an independent geopolitical and military analyst.

March 9, 2023 Posted by | Aletho News | , , , | 5 Comments