Aletho News


Heavily Criticised Pro-lockdown Paper Cited Far More Than Anti-lockdown Papers


Formal scientific institutions took a battering during the pandemic, and deservedly so. From the wildly inaccurate predictions of SAGE modellers to the denial of natural immunity by signatories of the John Snow Memorandum, ‘Science’ (uppercase ‘s’) has not had a good three years.

A particularly striking illustration of this is citation patterns in the scientific literature. If things were working well, the best studies would get cited the most. Unfortunately, that appears not to be the case: citations have flowed disproportionately to studies that uphold The Narrative.

In June, 2020, researchers from Imperial College London (including our old friend Neil Ferguson) published a paper in the prestigious journal Nature titled ‘Estimating the effects of non-pharmaceutical interventions on COVID-19 in Europe’.

They concluded – on the basis of a complex model-fitting exercise – that lockdowns had saved the lives of 3.1 million people across 11 European countries. That’s right, 3.1 million lives saved, and during the first three months of the pandemic alone.

Doesn’t sound very plausible, does it? After all, Sweden didn’t lock down, and they saw about as many deaths – or even fewer – than the countries that did lockdown. So how did the researchers get to the figure of 3.1 million lives saved?

As Philippe Lemoine notes, they just assumed that death numbers would have been far greater in the absence of lockdowns, and then took the difference between those numbers and the ones that were actually observed, and concluded the difference was due to lockdowns. Okay, but what about Sweden?

Well, the researchers fit a model in which the effect of different interventions could vary from country to country. And while Sweden didn’t have a lockdown, they did have a ban on public gatherings (of more than 500 people). So in the researchers’ model, Sweden’s ban on public gatherings ended up having the same impact as lockdown in all the other countries.

They were effectively claiming that, in France, Italy, the UK etc., lockdowns succeeded in preventing hundreds of thousands of deaths, but in Sweden, the same effect was achieved by simply banning public gatherings. Like I said, not very plausible. In fact, it’s preposterous.

The paper has been heavily criticised. However, that hasn’t stopped it being cited 2779 times! Most researchers don’t get that many citations in their entire career, let alone on a single paper.

Now let’s look at the number of citations accrued by papers finding that lockdowns didn’t have much effect.

Simon Wood’s paper ‘Did COVID-19 infections decline before UK lockdown?’ concluded that “infections were in decline before full UK lockdown”. It has been cited a total of 40 times (across two different versions).

Christian Bjørnskov’s paper ‘Did Lockdown Work? An Economist’s Cross-Country Comparison’ found “no clear association between lockdown policies and mortality development”. It has been cited a total of 57 times.

Eran Bendavid and colleagues’ paper ‘Assessing mandatory stay-at-home and business closure effects on the spread of COVID-19’ did “not find significant benefits on case growth of more restrictive NPIs”. It has been cited a total of 205 times.

Christopher Berry and colleagues’ paper ‘Evaluating the effects of shelter-in-place policies during the COVID-19 pandemic’ did “not find detectable effects of these policies on disease spread or deaths”. It has been cited a total of 68 times.

While none of these papers is perfect, they’re all vastly more rigorous than the Imperial College study published in Nature. Despite this, none of them has garnered even 1/10th as many citations as that study.

Something has gone seriously wrong when a flawed study gets almost three thousand citations, while more rigorous studies only pick up a few dozen. As to what explains this disparity, I can only speculate that most scientists haven’t come to terms with the fact that the ‘experts’ dropped the ball.

March 19, 2023 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Deception, Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular | , | Leave a comment

Courage of the teacher who refused to make his pupils wear masks

By Harry Hopkins | TCW Defending Freedom | March 14, 2023

Right from the outset of the ‘plandemic’ there have been those who recognised the evil in what was going on and who, in their own ways, have been making every effort to resist. Across the world many people have lost their jobs and their businesses, but perhaps giving up one’s livelihood on principle is the supreme act that a person with moral courage can do to oppose the enemy that confronts us.

There have been many such brave souls and Mark (not his real name) is such a person. A teacher at a large secondary school in Yorkshire, he realised that he would have difficulty doing his job when testing and then masking of his pupils was mandated. These instructions came from the local authority and were expected to be introduced without question. There were other teachers, too, who had grave misgivings, but they were in the minority and were openly mocked.

All teachers were given instructions about the distribution of testing kits and to organise pupil seating plans which had to be adhered to. All staff were expected to wear a face covering; there was no consultation about this. In the spring term of 2021 a box of testing kits arrived in Mark’s classroom, which he left untouched as the holiday was just about to start. On return from holiday he decided to write to the head teacher about his concerns, and you can read his email here.

Not only did the head not reply to this letter, but he didn’t speak to Mark again. Instead, he sent a teaching assistant, who was full on-narrative and was wearing two masks plus a visor, to admonish him for not complying. In Mark’s own words:

‘She commenced by bellowing instructions to maskless pupils to cover their faces. She glanced at me, clearly expecting a reaction. How could I possibly allow these potential vectors of death to be in school without covering their faces? I had never, and still have never instructed a child to obstruct their airways. It is a line I simply cannot cross. I suspect my response was neither wanted nor expected, since it appeared to make her address the children with yet more venom. I turned and smiled at the children instead who smiled back me. These confused souls seemed to prefer my smile to this clown’s anger, despite not being able to see her face.

‘I’m not seeking praise or recognition or anything at all here, I simply cannot in good conscience do it. As the school year progressed, things didn’t improve. Every few weeks she would arrive to carry out the task, a task that she clearly felt I should be doing and one I had no grounds to refuse. After she left the room, the masks would come down and an ever-increasing number of testing kits were discarded by the kids into the bin each time. My attitude was clearly causing an issue for some members of staff; many would blank me as we crossed in the corridor, and entering the staffroom sometimes felt like the scene from the movie An American Werewolf in London when the tourists walk into the Slaughtered Lamb pub and everyone suddenly stops talking to stare.’

When you read these words, describing the experience of a dedicated teacher who was untouched by the brainwashing that resulted in utter cruelty being inflicted on children across the country, it makes you shudder in disbelief. For Mark to maintain his moral stance in the face of such disgraceful behaviour from his colleagues surely speaks volumes for his strength of character. How on earth he managed to carry on, day after day, in the face of such hostility is a credit to his courage and steadfastness, not to mention his dedication to his pupils.

In July the headmaster was off work because he had tested positive for Covid. In his absence his deputies, clearly relishing the authority, upped the ante from passive-aggression to a decidedly more unpleasant tack. Mark’s pupil-centred teaching technique was deemed unsafe because he was not wearing a mask, did not sport PPE and was doing his best to help the kids in his charge by behaving in a ‘normal’ manner. He was told to go home, take a test or, if he preferred not to get tested, then allow other teachers to cover his classes for two weeks.

Confronted with such stupidity and total lack of any humanity regarding the care of pupils, Mark was pushed over the edge when another masked deputy began haranguing him about following ‘the science’. An argument ensued. It was the final straw and he collected his belongings and left for good.

It’s interesting to note that the decision to impose masks on schoolchildren in England was not ‘following the science’ at all but rather was purely for political expediency: ‘Face masks introduced in English secondary schools to avoid “argument” with Sturgeon’.

Mark gave up a career that he enjoyed tremendously because he would not subject his pupils to the Covid madness. The welfare of the children in his charge was always at the centre of his actions and he could not, in all conscience, inflict the insanity of masks, tests and distancing on his young charges.

As a conclusion, it is heartening to say that Mark now works as a supply teacher and devotes much time to opposing the narrative with practical actions. The wonderful thing from his point of view is that he stood by his conscience and has the satisfaction of going forward knowing that he kept his soul intact. One wonders how his headmaster, his deputies and other teachers who inflicted these despicable practices on young, impressionable youngsters justify their behaviour now that the truth about the Covid crimes is breaking by the day. Did they keep their souls intact? I think not.

March 19, 2023 Posted by | Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular | , , | Leave a comment

Homelessness and Hardiness to COVID-19

Toronto Study Indicates Homeless Managed Just Fine Through Pandemic

By Peter A. McCullough, MD, MPH | Courageous Discourse | March 16, 2023

It is well known that homeless populations have much higher rates of hospitalization for a variety of reasons including drug abuse, alcoholism, aspiration, pneumonia, and neuropsychiatric reasons. I have always wondered how they fared during COVID-19 having heard little about severe outcomes among those who live outside.

Lucie Richard and coworkers reported on 736 homeless individuals in Toronto, Ontario during 2021 and 2022. The majority managed through the illness with no reported difficulty over the time period, most with the Omicron variants. There were no reported severe cases, hospitalizations, or deaths.

Despite approximately two thirds taking a COVID-19 vaccine, the shots appeared to be useless in this population with no statistically significant vaccine efficacy. While the public has watched the relentless pursuit of well-employed adults, college age students, and children down to 6 months of age, the most economically deprived and vulnerable in society appear to be of little interest to the Biopharmaceutical Complex, and like the other groups, have no theoretical benefit from vaccination. As a general rule if the highest risk derive no reduction in hospitalization or death, then even lower risk individuals are not worth the effort for public health interventions such as vaccines.

March 19, 2023 Posted by | Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular | , , | Leave a comment

Chaos in Pakistan: Imran Khan Takes on America and Its “Comprador Elites”

By Junaid S. Ahmad | Global Research | March 19, 2023

With staunch US support, Pakistan’s unelected “imported government” is trying to arrest former Prime Minister Imran Khan, the most popular politician in the country, to prevent him from running in elections. But protesters are protecting him.

If 2022 was the year of popular uprisings in Pakistan, raising hope for protesters fed up with a thoroughly corrupt and repressive civil-military regime, 2023 seems to be the year when the government is trying every dirty trick in the book to kill that hope.

After a US-backed regime change operation removed elected Prime Minister Imran Khan from power in April 2022, Pakistan witnessed an unprecedented phenomenon in the nation’s history: For the first time, a civilian politician who was ousted from power didn’t simply end up in the dustbin of history, alongside interchangeable corrupt politicians who for decades played musical chairs, competing to plunder the country.

On the contrary, what occurred were massive outpourings of support for Khan and widespread opposition to the ancien régime put in power by Washington’s mercenaries in the military high command.

The enormous popular rejection of the current “imported government”, as Khan calls it, has made Pakistan’s elites increasingly desperate. They want him eliminated.

Assassination was their first method of choice – but they fumbled. At a rally in November, a gunman shot Khan in the leg, injuring but failing to kill him.

In the meantime, Plan B is being implemented: Arrest Khan on bogus charges and disqualify him from politics forever.

The former prime minister has been relentlessly holding peaceful demonstrations, demanding elections. The government knows that Khan would easily win, so it wants to prevent him from running.

A Gallup poll in March found that Khan is by far the most popular politician in Pakistan, with a 61% approval rating, compared to 37% disapproval.

The current, unelected Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has the complete opposite: a 32% approval rating, compared to 65% disapproval.

The figures are clear: Nearly two-thirds of Pakistanis support Khan and oppose the unelected government.

Pakistan’s “imported government” orders the arrest of Imran Khan

Faced with its deep unpopularity, on March 8, Pakistan’s regime initiated Plan B.

Khan was leading a peaceful protest – one of the countless rallies he has organized since the April 2022 regime-change operation.

This time, massive state security forces went on a rampage and tried to arrest Khan. But they could not do it. Standing between them and Khan were tens of thousands of his supporters.

The only way to get to Khan would have been a bloodbath. This was avoided – although one Khan supporter was killed.

Then again, on March 13, Khan called for a rally in the city considered to be the heart of Pakistan: Lahore.

Despite the entire state security machinery targeting him and his supporters, the rally in Lahore was one of the biggest the city has seen.

Khan and the protesters marched confidently and peacefully in every corner of the city, where they seemed unstoppable, greeted with joy by ordinary Pakistanis of all walks of life.

The former prime minister was undeterred, committed to holding demonstrations in the provinces of the Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK), in the lead-up to what he hopes will be national elections.

On March 14, the regime escalated its crackdown. Police surrounded Khan’s house in Lahore and tried to arrest him.

In response, thousands of supporters gathered at Khan’s home, protecting him.

The police responded with extreme violence, wounding dozens of protesters.

From his house, Khan symbolically delivered a speech via video stream, sitting with the tear gas canisters that had been fired outside.

The regime tries to ban Khan from public life

Khan’s determination to relentlessly participate in mass mobilizations has led the regime to try to ban him from public life.

Even Western organizations that are often biased, such as Amnesty International, have condemned the unelected Pakistani government’s authoritarian tactics, which have included prohibiting all speeches and rallies by Khan, as well arresting people who criticize the military on Twitter.

There are two main factors preventing an all-out assault to arrest Khan: the wrath of the population that would ensue, and fear that significant ranks within the armed forces would revolt and turn their guns on their superiors, à la Vietnam.

Indeed, it has been because of Khan’s popularity not just among ordinary Pakistani civilians but within the military ranks as well that the former prime minister has survived so far.

Khan’s popularity among some parts of the army is easy to explain. Rank-and-file soldiers and the majority of the junior and mid-rank officer corps are not keen on Washington dictating a War on Terror 2.0. They have always appreciated Khan’s principled opposition, since day one, to any military solution to the militancy in Afghanistan and the northwest of Pakistan.

Throughout 2022, Khan’s political party, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI, the “Movement for Justice”), exponentially rose in popularity, in contrast to the all-too-visible political shenanigans of the coalition of feudal family dynasties and other corrupt forces in power.

If it is true that Khan mismanaged both political and economic governance while in power, then the current lot has engendered a virtual implosion and collapse in the country.

Khan challenges Pakistan’s pro-Western elites

It is difficult to overstate how incensed ordinary Pakistanis are with the political mafias, significant sections of the military top brass, and the chief mafia don: Washington.

One of the most disturbing aspects of what has been happening is the virtual connivance of liberal-left forces and the Pakistani deep state in attempting to eliminate Khan from the Pakistani political scene.

The visceral hatred of Khan by Pakistan’s comprador elites cannot be explained by simply having differences with Khan on various policies – something that Khan’s own critical supporters have as well.

No, for this elite class of the liberal, pro-Western Pakistani intelligentsia, Khan has committed the ultimate crime: socio-cultural class betrayal.

Khan lived abroad for so long during his impressive cricket career. He studied at Oxford, and speaks perfect English. Thus, Pakistan’s ‘Westoxicated’ elites thought that Khan would behave just like them.

Instead, Khan has rejected the condescending attitude that the country’s Western-educated elites show toward ordinary Pakistanis.

Khan has mobilized tens of millions because of his sincerity to reimagine a new Pakistan, prioritizing social justice and an independent foreign policy.

The fact that one small, sectarian leftist party or the other is not being given the credit of leading the revolt against the unpopular regime has made them neurotically envious of Khan.

It is clear for all to see: Khan and the critical supporters both in and outside of his political party have become the most dangerous threat to Pakistan’s status quo.

That is why we have seen very unusual and fast-paced meetings between US officials and Pakistan’s generals and regime officials: Washington’s “friends again”.

Elimination of Khan is absolutely necessary for the troika of these power centers: local comprador political elites, the military high command, and Washington.

Why? Because they know that Khan and his party will sweep any elections that are held.

US encourages Pakistan to “continue working with the IMF”

In the meantime, Pakistan is enduring a deep economic crisis. The country has nearly exhausted its foreign exchange reserves.

The regime is in talks with the US-dominated International Monetary Fund (IMF) to save itself from bankruptcy. All of the corresponding policies of austerity and taxing the poor – “structural adjustment” – are to be expected.

CIA officer turned US State Department spokesman Ned Price said in a press briefing on March 8 that Washington wants Pakistan to “continue working with the IMF” to impose “reforms that will improve Pakistan’s business environment”, in order to “make Pakistani businesses more attractive and competitive”.

In other words, the US State Department wants Pakistan to double down on neoliberal economic policies, such as lowering wages and cutting social spending.

If hated before, the current “imported government” is now despised more than ever.

Imran Khan’s independent foreign policy angers the mafia don in Washington

Khan’s foreign policy was anathema to Washington.

He refused to recognize apartheid Israel as a legitimate state.

He improved ties with Russia for straightforward reasons of economic necessity (as well as promoting the geostrategic stability in the broader Central Asian region).

Khan mended ties and cooperated with Iran, even praising its revolutionary “dignity.”

He strengthened ties with China.

At the same time, Khan repeatedly said he desired friendly relations with Washington, proposing that they work together in peacebuilding in Afghanistan and the wider region.

But these other foreign policy aims were utterly unacceptable to the mafia don, which seems to be set on a war path with Beijing (and others).

Pakistan has been a close ally of China since the 1960s. But Islamabad’s intense obsession with pleasing Washington is a flagrant slap in the face of Beijing.

The meetings that top Pakistani military officials, including the powerful Chief of Army Staff, General Qamar Javed Bajwa, have held with officials in Washington and London are not being missed upon by Beijing or Moscow.

Though Pakistan is suffering through some of the worst economic woes in its history – thanks to the robber barons in power – the US still knows that the South Asian nation has one of the most formidable militaries in the world, and is a nuclear-powered country of 230 million.

Washington also knows that it can easily woo the military top brass by reminding them of how only the US and its weapons and fighter jets can allow Pakistan to stay apace with arch-rival India, trying to match its military supremacy in the region.

This is why the US is so keen on Pakistan participating in Joe Biden’s second “Summit for Democracy” in March 2023. (Despite the fact that Pakistan’s current government was not elected, and repeatedly resisted calls for holding a vote.)

As prime minister, Khan respectfully declined the invitation to the first summit in 2021, because he knew exactly what the intention was: A declining empire seeking to muster as many nations as it can to be a part of its “coalition of the willing” against official enemies like China, Russia, Iran, Venezuela, Cuba, etc.

According to leaks by Pakistan’s own ambassador to the US (who has a soft spot for Khan), Washington wants to reestablish its old military base in Pakistan, which was closed down in 2011.

The US is also reportedly dictating to Pakistan which militant groups to go after and which ones should be left alone – such as the anti-China East Turkestan independence movement or the ISIS elements giving trouble to Beijing and the Taliban government in Kabul.

Most importantly, Washington wants to compel Islamabad to do everything possible to significantly reduce or halt any progress on the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and Beijing’s Belt and Road Initiative.

Moreover, Washington and the Persian Gulf monarchies are having a splendid time in convincing the new favorable military-civilian regime in Islamabad to undertake a political 180 that Khan would never agree to: gradually normalizing relations with Tel Aviv.

Nevertheless, what all of these power centers conspiring against Khan overlook is that they are dealing with a different Pakistani population now. The people’s political consciousness has exponentially risen with the ouster of Khan from power.

Hence, whether Khan is assassinated or somehow arrested or disqualified from politics, the powers-that-be might get a rude awakening, and be surprised that they are dealing with a new Pakistan, with or without Khan – one that will have zero tolerance for their venality, corruption, and subordination to Washington.

Prof. Junaid S Ahmad teaches Religion and Global Politics and is the Director of the Center for the Study of Islam and Decoloniality, Islamabad, Pakistan.

March 19, 2023 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Solidarity and Activism | , , , | Leave a comment

Panama detains and deports head of Brazil-Palestine Institute (Ibraspal)

Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network | March 18, 2023

Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network expresses its solidarity with Dr. Ahmed Shehadeh after Panamanian immigration authorities at Tocumen International Airport detained and deported Shehadeh, the head of the Brazilian-Palestinian Institute (Ibraspal), on Thursday, March 16. The Panamanian officials confiscated and held his Brazilian passport while he was transiting at the airport on his way to the second conference of the Palestinian Federation of Latin America, taking place between 17 and 19 March in Barranquilla, Colombia, Ibraspal’s vice president, Sayid Marcos Tenório, said.

“Shehadeh was interrogated by Panamanian intelligence agents, possibly with the participation and support of U.S. and Israeli intelligence,” Tenório said. “The state of Panama is under American occupation. American and Israeli intelligence are targeting anyone working against imperialist Zionist policies.”

Palestinian community sources in Brazil reported that extensive contacts took place with the Brazilian authorities, as Alexandre Padilha (Minister of Institutional Relations), Paulo Pimenta (Federal Deputy) and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs intervened, as did the representative of the Brazilian Embassy in Panama, communicating with the Panamanian authorities until Shehadeh returned to Brazil after his deportation, where his passport was returned to him at Brasilia airport.

Shehadeh was detained and interrogated for many hours before he was told that Panamanian immigration authorities were deporting him back to Brazil rather than allowing him to continue his journey to Colombia and the Palestinian conference taking place there.

Rawa Alsagheer, Palestinian activist and member of Samidoun Network in Brazil, denounced the action of the Panamanian authorities. “This reflects a Zionist and U.S. attempt to target and disrupt the organizing of Palestinians in exile in diaspora, especially in Latin America,” she said.

Brazilian media and social media widely reported on the news of Shehadeh’s detention and deportation, and many Brazilian and Palestinian organizations denounced the Panamanian action. The Panamanian Committee in Solidarity with the Palestinian People also condemned the immigration authorities’ actions.

Brazilian organizations and parties are planning to visit Shehadeh to express their solidarity with the Palestinian people and their rejection of the Panamanian authorities’ decision to prevent him from participating in the Palestinian Federation of Latin America’s conference.

March 19, 2023 Posted by | Full Spectrum Dominance, Solidarity and Activism, Subjugation - Torture | , , | Leave a comment

US paranoid about Russia-China summit


The arrest warrant issued by the International Criminal Court against Vladimir Putin can only be seen as a publicity stunt by the Anglo-Saxon clique, with the US leading from the rear. Ironically, though, the ICC acted on the eve of the 20th anniversary of the Anglo-Saxon invasion of Iraq in 2003, which led to horrific war crimes but the “judges” at Hague slept over it. Both Washington and London admit today that the 2003 invasion was illegal — based on trumped up allegations against Saddam Hussein.  

There’s no chance, of course, that the ICC warrant will ever be taken seriously. ICC has no jurisdiction in Russia, which like the US is not a signatory to the Rome Statute. But the intention here is something else.

The mud-throwing at Putin is yet another display of President Biden’s visceral hatred towards the Russian leader that goes back in time by well over a decade, and is timed to distract attention from the state visit by Chinese President Xi Jinping to Moscow on Monday, an event that not only has spectacular optics but is sure to intensify the “no limit” partnership between the two superpowers. 

The Anglo-Saxon clique is watching the talks in Moscow tomorrow with dismay. To be sure, Moscow and Beijing have decided to stand together to push back the US hegemony.

Today, China exceeds the combined manufacturing capacity of the US and its European allies, and, equally, Russia has emerged as the world’s largest nuclear weapon state superior to the US both in the quantity and quality of the weaponry. 

It has dawned on the American mind that Russia cannot be defeated in Ukraine. There is a chicken-and-egg situation facing NATO, according to a report in Politico. Massive investments are needed to catch up with Russia’s defence industry but Europe’s ailing economies have other critical priorities.

The notions of defeating Russia in a proxy war in conditions of “sanctions from hell” have turned out to be delusional. It is US banks that are collapsing, it is European economies that are threatened by stagnation. 

The US’ exasperation is evident in the top secret mission by MQ-9 Reaper drone near the Crimean peninsula on March 14. US Global Hawk drones have been spotted regularly over the Black Sea in recent years but this case was different. 

The Reaper’s transponder was switched off as it entered Russia’s temporary regime for the airspace established for the purposes of the special military operation near the Crimean peninsula (which Moscow had duly notified to all users of international airspace in accordance with international norms.)

In the event, Russia’s Su-27 fighter jets outmanoeuvred the Reaper, which lost control and drowned in the Black Sea. Moscow conferred state awards to the two pilots who drove Reaper to the seabed.

The Russian ambassador in Washington has since warned that while Moscow is not seeking any escalation, any deliberate attack on a Russian aircraft in neutral airspace will be construed as “an open declaration of war against the largest nuclear power.” 

If the US planned the drone incident to test Russia’s reaction, well, the latter has given an unambiguous message. And all this took place in the immediate run-up to President Xi’s visit. 

Biden since hit back by welcoming the ICC warrant on Putin saying “it’s justified… (and) makes a very strong point.” But Biden’s memory is failing him. For, the stated American position on ICC is that Washington not only doesn’t recognise the jurisdiction of the ICC but if any US national is arrested or brought before the ICC, Washington reserves the right to use military force to rescue the detainee! 

Furthermore, Washington threatens reprisal against any country that cooperates with an ICC warrant against a US citizen. The George W Bush administration stated this categorically against the backdrop of the horrific war crimes in Iraq, and the US never resiled from it. 

By the way, there has been no referral by the UN Security Council or General Assembly to the ICC. So, who organised this arrest warrant? Britain — who else? The Brits bullied the ICC judges who are highly vulnerable to blackmail, as they draw fat salaries and would sup with the devil if it helped secure extended terms for them at the Hague. This becomes yet another case study of the piecemeal destruction of the UN system by the Anglo-Saxon clique in the recent years.

Suffice to say, the drone incident and the ICC warrant vitiate the climate for any dialogue between Moscow and Kiev. Evidently, the Anglo-Saxon clique is worried like hell that China might spring another surprise as it did recently by mediating the recent Saudi-Iranian deal. 

In a meaningful remark, the Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin said on Friday that Xi’s visit is partially to promote “peace.” Beijing has already released a “peace plan” for Ukraine, a 12-point agenda for “a political resolution of the Ukraine crisis,” which is  on Zelensky’s table in Kiev although the West studiously chose to ignore it. 

In a phone call on Thursday, Chinese foreign minister Qin Gang told his Ukrainian counterpart Dmytro Kuleba that Beijing hopes “all parties will remain calm, rational and restrained, and resume peace talks as soon as possible.” 

The Chinese readout said Kuleba discussed “the prospect of peace talks … and noted that China’s position paper on the political settlement of the Ukraine crisis shows its sincerity in promoting a ceasefire and an end to the conflict. He expressed the hope to maintain communication with China.”

Unsurprisingly, Biden is paranoid about China’s push to mediate between Moscow and Kiev. The point is, he and Zelensky are locked in a deathly embrace — the corruption scam involving the activities of Biden’s son in Kiev is hanging over POTUS like the Damocles’ sword, while on the other hand, Zelensky is fighting for political survival and is increasingly acting on his own. 

Disregarding western doubts about the wisdom of holding the shattered frontline city of Bakhmut, Zelensky is digging in and keeping up an attritional defence that may drag on. (Politico) 

Evidently, Biden is acting like a cat on a hot tin rood. He can neither let go Zelensky nor can afford to be locked into a forever war in Ukraine while Taiwan Straits beckons.

Beijing’s stance has visibly hardened lately and the scorn that the US poured on China’s national pride by shooting down its weather balloon has only exacerbated the distrust. Similarly, the nadir has been reached for Russia with the Reaper drone provocation and the Anglo-Saxon clique’s ICC scam. A point of no return has been reached.

Xi has chosen Russia for his first visit abroad in his third term also, the war in Ukraine notwithstanding. While announcing Xi’s visit to Russia, the Chinese Foreign Ministry said, “As the world enters a new period of turbulence and change, as a permanent member of the UN Security Council and an important power, the significance and influence of China-Russia relations go far beyond the bilateral scope.”

Again, Biden would have thought he was putting Putin on the mat with the Reaper stunt and the ICC scam. But Putin is nonchalant, choosing today to defiantly make his first-ever visit to Donbass.

Putin toured Mariupol, the port city that was bitterly contested by the NATO operatives, drove a vehicle along the city streets, making stops at several locations and surveying reconstruction works. It was a defiant signal to Biden that NATO has lost the war.

March 19, 2023 Posted by | Aletho News | , , , , | 1 Comment

Iran-Iraq Security Deal Signed in Baghdad

Al-Manar | March 19, 2023

Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council Ali Shamkhani will reportedly sign a bilateral agreement on security cooperation with Iraq during a visit to Baghdad.

Accompanied by governor of the Central Bank of Iran (CBI) and two Foreign Ministry deputies, Shamkhani left Tehran for Baghdad on Sunday morning at the invitation of Iraq’s National Security Advisor Qasim al-Araji.

In addition to meetings with senior Iraqi political and economic officials, Shamkhani is scheduled to sign a document on mutual security cooperation that was being prepared for months.

The agreement would commit Iran and Iraq to safeguarding the principles of good neighborliness and protecting the common border. The deal is believed to have a significant role in ending the illegal presence of anti-Iranian armed groups and the elements affiliated with the Zionist regime in the Iraqi areas adjacent to Iran’s northwestern border regions.

Shamkhani’s visit to Iraq, made days after a landmark trip to the United Arab Emirates, comes after Iran and Saudi Arabia announced their decision to restore ties.

Following days of intensive talks in Beijing, Iran and Saudi Arabia agreed on March 10 to resume their diplomatic relations and reopen their embassies and diplomatic missions within at most two months.

Arab governments neighboring Iran have eagerly welcomed the rapprochement between the two regional heavyweights.

March 19, 2023 Posted by | Aletho News | , , | Leave a comment

US Nurtured Plans of Destroying Iraq Years Before 2003 Invasion, Ex-Official Says

By Svetlana Ekimenko – Sputnik – 19.03.2023

Based on what turned out to be the false premise that then-leader of Iraq Saddam Hussein was hiding weapons of mass destruction, on March 19, 2003, the US launched its Operation Iraqi Freedom, which cost the lives of over 4,700 US and allied servicemen, and hundreds of thousands, or even millions of Iraqis.
The US was determined to destroy Iraq years before the 2003 invasion, an Iraqi official has told Sputnik.

Two decades since the US military entered Baghdad, Farouk Al Fityan, Iraq’s last ambassador to Greece before the US invasion of the country, has shared with Sputnik his recollections of what happened 20 years ago.

“We feared an invasion after the events of September 11, 2001, and the subsequent groundless, unrealistic accusations, claiming that Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction, and had possibly been involved in the 9/11 attack,” said the ex-director of the Iraqi foreign minister’s office before the US occupation.

On February 5, 2003, then-US Secretary of State Colin Powell addressed the United Nations, claiming the United States had ample evidence of Iraq’s production of weapons of mass destruction, and demonstrated a vial containing “anthrax” to illustrate the point. However, the so-called proof presented by Washington failed to impress the UN Security Council, which did not authorize the United States to use force. Indeed, by the time of the unauthorized US-led invasion of Iraq, Saddam Hussein had eliminated the country’s chemical weapons and other weapons of mass destruction programs. The Bush administration was subsequently revealed to have fabricated evidence of Iraqi WMDs.

After the occupation of Afghanistan, it became evident that Iraq was next in line, Farouk Al Fityan said.

The US launched its invasion of Afghanistan in October 2001, weeks after the 9/11 terrorist attacks. At the time, the US explained its move by highlighting that Osama bin Laden had masterminded the attacks, and that the Taliban* had offered sanctuary to members of al-Qaeda. However, the Taliban never recognized the US assertions that the group had any ties to the 2001 attacks. The US invasion went on to claim the lives of thousands of US soldiers, and more than 100,000 Afghan troops, police, as well as civilians caught in the crossfire.

Amid the hostility emanating from Washington, Baghdad attempted to consolidate international opinion, and the Iraqi foreign minister at the time, Naji Sabri, serving under then-President Saddam Hussein, was trying to involve a number of Arab countries, especially the Gulf States, in this process, Farouk Al Fityan said.

Shuttle diplomacy was undertaken to the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Qatar, and Bahrain… After the Beirut summit in 2002, visits were made to Cairo, Damascus, and Algiers. The Foreign Ministry also reached out to Iran and other neighboring countries, hoping to “break the mechanism of war” conceived by the United States.

At the same time, the former Iraqi official said, American President George W. Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair had already set the stage for what would follow.

“If we look at the Arab reality today, we will see that the scheme tested in Iraq was later implemented in Libya, Sudan, and Syria. The Arab world was thrust into a difficult situation 20 years ago.”

When the blockade of Iraq was imposed after the Gulf War (1990–1991), everyone suffered a lot. It was very difficult to get medicine for children, not to mention food. The hardest years were from 1991 to 1995, the Iraqi ex-official said, adding:

“We felt that the US was serious about destroying Iraq, because there had never been an international blockade like the one that was imposed upon us then.”

Subsequently, the Oil-for-Food Program (OIP) was established by the UN in 1995, allowing Iraq to sell oil on the world market in exchange for food, medicine, and other humanitarian necessities. Due to the blockade and false accusations of possession of weapons of mass destruction, Iraq had to deal with multiple international inspection teams. Baghdad opened the doors for the teams, albeit the Foreign Ministry was fully aware of their lack of impartiality.

“We knew that they were subordinate to the United States and Great Britain. But Iraq had no choice but to accept. And we, the diplomats and the military, were forced to come to terms with this. However, I was personally convinced that they had come to destroy Iraq, and not to ‘remove the threat of war.'”

According to Farouk Al Fityan, his country’s leadership was convinced that there would be no US offensive, as had happened in Afghanistan. They expected that everything would be limited to some air strikes on some objects, but in fact, “America’s decision to destroy Iraq had already been made.”

March 19, 2023 Posted by | Militarism, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , | Leave a comment

CNN Let Slip That The ICC’s Arrest Warrant Is Revenge For The West’s Failure To Isolate Russia

By Andrew Korybko | March 19, 2023

Narrative Reinforcement

The International Criminal Court (ICC) issued a warrant for President Putin’s arrest late last week in a move that most regarded as purely symbolic considering the impossibility of enforcing it in Russia. This in turn prompted interpretations that it was done mostly for information warfare purposes related to reinforcing Western perceptions about the Ukrainian Conflict in order to prevent this proxy war’s most passionate supporters from losing hope if Russia captures Artyomovsk/“Bakhmut”.

That scenario is increasingly likely after “The Washington Post Finally Told The Full Truth About How Poorly Kiev’s Forces Are Faring”, which followed Zelensky telling CNN in an exclusive interview that Russia might roll through the rest of Donbass if it takes control of that city. That sequence of events could quickly reshape Western perceptions to the point where many who previously supported their governments’ blank check policy towards Kiev might seriously begin to doubt whether it’s worth it.

Ulterior Information Warfare Motivations

There might have been more to the ICC’s provocation than just that, however, as strongly suggested by one of CNN’s latest reports about how “Putin’s world just got a lot smaller with the ICC’s arrest warrant”. International Diplomatic Editor Nic Robertson let slip that this could actually have been revenge for the West’s failure to isolate Russia, the interpretation of which is intuited by reading between the lines of what he wrote.

That perception manager spent the entire time trying to convince readers that President Putin is probably personally upset that he can’t travel to any of the 123 countries that participate in this partially recognized and highly scandalous body. Robertson implies that the lack of in-person meetings between that Russian leader and his counterparts could deal a heavy blow to his country’s diplomacy, conspicuously omitting that global diplomacy has mostly been conducted online since 2020.

His artificially manufactured information warfare narrative comes several weeks after “The New York Times Just Admitted That The West Failed To Isolate Russia”, thus extending credence to the interpretation that the timing of the ICC’s provocation was partially meant to distract from this reality. That aforementioned article importantly followed Indian Ambassador to Russia Pavan Kapoor expressing hope in early February that President Putin will attend this year’s SCO and BRICS Summits in India.

The Indian Dimension

As recently as last week, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that “It cannot be ruled out” that the Russian leader will visit that country later this year, “But no decision has been made yet.” Nevertheless, “India’s Invitation For Putin To Attend This Year’s G20 Summit Proves That He Isn’t A ‘Pariah’”, which infuriated the US-led West’s Golden Billion to no end. This de facto New Cold War bloc knows that his attendance at that event would shatter perceptions about their global influence once and for all.

The New York Times already predicted at the end of last year that “Russia’s War Could Make It India’s World”, informing their audience that this South Asian state has masterfully managed to accelerate its rise as a globally significant Great Power throughout the course of the past year’s chaotic developments. The British High Commissioner to India even recently opined that his host country is poised to become “one of the three defining countries in the world, the US and China being the others.”

His words circumstantiate predictions about the impending trifurcation of International Relations into the US-led West’s Golden Billion, the Sino-Russo Entente, and the de facto Indian-led Global South. The relevance of this insight to the present piece is that Robertson sought to fearmonger about President Putin’s potential trip to India in his article, which lends weight to the claim that the ICC wanted to take revenge against Russia for the West’s failure to isolate it by limiting its leader’s foreign travel options.

CNN’s International Diplomatic Editor wrote that “Putin faces a dilemma now, if he shows up in Delhi for this year’s G20 in September. India, like the USA, is not signed up to the ICC, but what will Prime Minister Narendra Modi do?” There’s no realistic chance that this will happen, but speculating otherwise is intended to deter President Putin from traveling to India for the SCO and BRICS Summits as well as sow the seeds of suspicion in the Russian-Indian Strategic Partnership.

Robertson then added that “Without careful planning Putin could touch down in a country apparently unaligned with the ICC and not beholden to the international law requirements he be handed over to the Hague, yet for unseen international political pressure, or their own new found desire for international justice triggering a legal process to get him to the Hague.” This particular passage is intended to scare the Russian leader away from traveling to any country in the Global South.

“Containing” President Putin To China

Amidst the impending trifurcation of International Relations that was previously touched upon, this could essentially limit President Putin to only ever traveling to China, with which Russia is nowadays in an unofficial entente. The preceding observation, however, is only relevant in the event that his security services either assess that there’s a credible risk of Robertson’s scenario transpiring or potential host countries signal behind the scenes that they don’t want the negative optics of him visiting.

In either case, the outcome would be that popular perceptions about his personal “isolation” are reinforced in the minds of the targeted global audience, thus partially reviving the West’s narrative in this respect. It doesn’t matter that Russian diplomacy can continue to be practiced through virtual means and that almost all agreements reached between leaders are usually worked out by their diplomats ahead of their summits since this is all about repairing damage to the West’s reputation.

Meddling In Bilateral Relations

The secondary purpose as intuited by what Robertson just let slip in his article is to pressure those states that aren’t party to the ICC into signaling to Russia that they’re uncomfortable hosting President Putin due to the resultant Western-driven information warfare campaign that would follow. Bilateral relations likely wouldn’t suffer in that scenario since Moscow is well aware of how intense its opponents’ pressure can be on others, but this could still further reinforce the aforesaid popular perceptions.

The African Angle

Building upon this objective, it also can’t be discounted that the tertiary goal is to sabotage the Second Russia-Africa Summit that’s slated for July exactly as Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov warned late last month. In this context, the modus operandi might be to pressure leaders from those African countries that are party to the ICC into canceling their planned trips under the implied threat that going through with them would unleash a new wave of Western-driven Hybrid Warfare against them.

The Golden Billion is furious that Russia is helping African countries liberate themselves from France’s decades-long neo-imperialism, hence the urgency in sabotaging this July’s Second Russia-Africa Summit through the aforementioned means. This doesn’t of course mean that they’ll succeed, but just that there’s a very high chance that they’ll weaponize the ICC’s provocation for that purpose, though it could backfire if enough African leaders whose countries participate in that body still defy the West.

Concluding Thoughts

Upon reflecting on the grand strategic context within which the ICC just issued its warrant for President Putin’s arrest, it becomes clear that this is truly a form of revenge for the West’s failure to isolate Russia. This move is aimed at limiting his personal travel options, prompting those countries that aren’t part of the ICC to signal that they’d feel uncomfortable with the optics of hosting him, and pressuring African leaders to cancel their plans to travel to St. Petersburg for this July’s Second Russia-Africa Summit.

March 19, 2023 Posted by | Russophobia | Leave a comment

COVID Amnesty for Decision Makers?

Dr. Scott Jensen | March 15, 2023

Folks starved to death, killed themselves, and stopped caring about living; this isn’t about ‘forgive and forget,’ it’s about accountability!

Help me keep my medical license:

#Health #Freedom #COVID

March 19, 2023 Posted by | Timeless or most popular, Video, War Crimes | , , | Leave a comment