Aletho News


Twenty Times the CDC Exaggerated the Threat From Covid With False Data


The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) published inaccurate data about the COVID-19 pandemic and made incorrect claims that exaggerated the threat on at least 20 occasions since January 2021, a new paper has found.

The pre-print (not yet peer-reviwed) by Vinay Prasad, Tracy Beth Hoeg, Kelley Krohnert and Alyson Haslam documents 25 instances when the CDC reported statistical or numerical errors. Twenty (80%) of these instances exaggerated the severity of the COVID-19 situation, three instances (12%) simultaneously exaggerated and downplayed the severity of the situation and one error was neutral. One error exaggerated COVID-19 vaccine risks. The CDC was notified about the errors in 16 instances (64%), and later corrected the errors, at least partially, in 13 instances (52%).

The authors searched for the errors by reviewing CDC publications, press releases, interviews, meetings and Twitter accounts. They also catalogued mortality data from both the National Center for Health Statistics and the CDC Covid Data Tracker and compared reported results.

They concluded that “a basic prerequisite for making informed policy decisions is accurate and reliable statistics, even during times of uncertainty”. They note a need for greater diligence in data collection and reporting. They also recommend that the federal entity responsible for reporting health statistics “should be firewalled from the entity setting policy due to concerns of real or perceived systematic bias in errors” – in this instance, towards exaggerating risk.

Here are the 25 errors they found:

February 26th 2021:

  • MMWR stated that during the study period, the seven-day moving average of cases identified by PCR or antigen testing ranged from 152 to 577 cases.
  • Multiple errors. Reported case rates during the study period were described as a seven-day moving average of cases per 100,000 persons including PCR and antigen cases, but the paper actually reported the raw seven day moving average (without adjusting for population) and for PCR only (not including antigen tests).
  • From: MMWR
  • Risk: Exaggerated
  • Concerns: Children

July 26th 2021:

  • Delta Variant is as contagious as chicken pox.
  • Delta is not as contagious as varicella. The CDC overstated Delta R0 and understated chicken pox R0 (Delta estimate was overlaid directly on a New York Times graphic).
  • From: CDC slide deck
  • Risk: Exaggerated
  • Concerns: All

July 27th 2021:

  • 4% of COVID-19 deaths are in children 0-17.
  • Actual number was 0.04% based on original CDC estimated data. When the estimated data were updated later, the percentages were not updated. The actual percentage based on the updated data was 0.07%.
  • From: COVID-19 website
  • Risk: Exaggerated
  • Concerns: Children

October 15th 2021:

  • “COVID-NET data for the week ending Sept. 25th show that rates of COVID-19-associated hospitalisations in children ages 5-11 years are the highest they’ve been.”
  • COVID-NET hospitalisations were already falling from Sept peak. Rate was 1.1 in week ending Sept. 11th and Sept. 25th. (Now week of Sept. 11th shows 1.2),
  • From: Twitter @CDCgov
  • Risk: Exaggerated
  • Concerns: Children

October 27th 2021:

  • “CDC Director Walensky said “there have been 745 deaths in children less than 18.”
  • As of 27/10/21, NCHS data showed 558 deaths with COVID-19. Final NCHS data shows 679 pediatric deaths with COVID-19 through Oct. 30th, 2021
  • From: White House Press Briefing
  • Risk: Exaggerated
  • Concerns: Children

November 8th 2021:

  • Among ages 0-17, CDC’s reported rate of symptomatic illness was [more] than the total infection rate (asymptomatic + symptomatic –
    an impossible claim), and this error occurred among children (infection rate also fell only for children from May 21st to Sept 21st estimates).
  • Estimated infection rate was 35,490 per 100K, not 29,885 per 100K (symptomatic illness remained at 30,253 per 100K).
  • From: COVID-19 website
  • Risk: Neutral
  • Concerns: All

December 20th 2021:

  • Omicron makes up 73% of new infections in the U.S.
  • Error with Nowcast estimate, a week later they revised to 23% (outside the previous 95% CI).
  • From: Data Tracker
  • Risk: Exaggerated
  • Concerns: All

February 24th 2022:

  • COVID-19 hospitalisations had a sudden over-1.6-fold increase in Georgia per HHS/CDC data.
  • Very likely a dramatic multi-week increase was due to imputation error on behalf of the reporting state or municipality, yet this was not audited or detected.
  • From: Data Tracker
  • Risk: Exaggerated
  • Concerns: All

March 15th:

  • Paediatric deaths on the Data Tracker demographics page were overstated while adult deaths were understated.
  • On 15/3/22, CDC removed 416 paediatric deaths from Data Tracker from 1,755 to 1,339 (still overstated) and almost 72,000 adult deaths, blaming an algorithm for classifying deaths as COVID-19 related.
  • From: Data Tracker
  • Risk: Mixed
  • Concerns: Both

June 17th 2022:

  • COVID-19 is a top five cause of death in children of all age groups.
  • Pre-print had inaccurate data, and CDC chose the most extreme version of the flawed data. Specifically, for COVID-19 it used cumulative counts (which spanned more than two years), and death was attributed if it was one of any multiple cause of death, whereas for other causes of death, they used only a single year, and attributed it only if it was the single underlying cause of death).
  • From: ACIP Meeting
  • Risk: Exaggerated
  • Concerns: Children

June 23rd 2022:

  • At a White House COVID-19 briefing, CDC Director Walensky cited the claim that COVID-19 is a “top five cause of death” in children
  • Flawed pre-print, authors already acknowledged that fact, and COVID-19 was not a top five cause of death.
  • From: White House Press Briefing
  • Risk: Exaggerated
  • Concerns: Children

June 27th 2022:

  • ACIP website includes the “top five cause of death” claim
  • Flawed pre-print, authors already acknowledged that fact, and COVID-19 was not a top five cause of death.
  • From: ACIP website
  • Risk: Exaggerated
  • Concerns: Children

August 9th 2022:

  • COVID-19 has killed 1,500 children ages 17 and younger.
  • As of 10/8/22, NCHS data showed 1,201 deaths with COVID-19. As of 5/2/23, NCHS data shows 1,323 paediatric deaths with COVID-19 through August 6th 2022.
  • From: Twitter @CDCgov
  • Risk: Exaggerated
  • Concerns: Children

August 12th 2022:

  • “COVID-19 hospitalisations for children and teens are increasing again in the U.S.”
  • CDC hospitalisation data showed hospitalisations had peaked two weeks prior, on 29/7/22.
  • From: Twitter @CDCgov
  • Risk: Exaggerated
  • Concerns: Children

August 20th 2022:

  • CDC Excess Mortality Dashboard overstated recent deaths in North Carolina and Connecticut.
  • Model for weighting due to death reporting lag was poorly adjusted.
  • From: CDC Excess Mortality Dashboard
  • Risk: Exaggerated risk of all-cause mortality
  • Concerns: All

August 22nd 2022:

  • Alabama paediatric hospitalisations had a dramatic single week increase from under 10 per day to over 50 per day.
  • Very likely a dramatic single week increase was due to imputation error on behalf of the reporting state or municipality, yet this was not audited or detected.
  • From: Data Tracker
  • Risk: Exaggerated
  • Concerns: Children

August 26th 2022:

  • CDC Data Tracker made a single week jump of 186 paediatric deaths and 1,679 adult deaths, which is unusually high for children and unusually low for adults.
  • Incorrect death data. CDC corrected this days later, removing 173 paediatric deaths and adding 2,484 adult deaths
  • From: Data Tracker
  • Risk: Mixed
  • Concerns: All

September 1st 2022:

  • ACIP Chair Grace Lee repeated the “top five cause of death” claim in ACIP meeting to approve bivalent booster.
  • Flawed pre-print was corrected two months prior. Unknown if ACIP committee informed.
  • From: ACIP meeting
  • Risk: Exaggerated
  • Concerns: Children

November 9th 2022:

  • Florida paediatric hospitalisations had a dramatic single week increase from seven to 112 (seven-day new admissions).
  • Very likely a dramatic single week increase was due to imputation error on behalf of the reporting state or municipality, yet this was not audited or detected.
  • From: Data Tracker
  • Risk: Exaggerated
  • Concerns: Children

December 30th 2022:

  • XBB.1.5 variant reported at 41% of new infections in the US.
  • A week later they revised to 18% (outside the original 95% CI).
  • From: COVID-19 website
  • Risk: Exaggerated
  • Concerns: All

December 31st 2022:

  • North Carolina paediatric hospitalisations had a dramatic single week increase from two to 19 (seven-day new admissions).
  • Very likely a dramatic single week increase was due to imputation error on behalf of the reporting state or municipality, yet this was not audited or detected
  • From: Data Tracker
  • Risk: Exaggerated
  • Concerns: Children

January 13th 2023:

  • Table 2 listed 62 events for children needing medical care as 13.9%.
  • It should be 1.9%. It is correct in the text, but not the table.
  • From: MMWR
  • Risk: Exaggerated risk of vaccine
  • Concerns: Children

February 9th 2023:

  • Dr. Walensky testified before Congress that there had been “2,000 paediatric deaths from COVID-19”.
  • This number comes from the flawed Data Tracker. Actual number is 1,400-1,500
  • From: Data Tracker/ testimony
  • Risk: Exaggerated
  • Concerns: Children

February 23rd 2023:

  • ACIP slide claimed 1,489 paediatric deaths in ages six months-17 years.
  • They did not remove 305 deaths in infants under-six months. Actual number should have been 1,184 using the NCHS data source cited on the slide
  • From: ACIP meeting
  • Risk: Exaggerated
  • Concerns: Children

Through March 3rd 2023:

  • Data Tracker continues to report too many paediatric deaths and too few adult deaths.
  • Inaccurate mortality data by age group are updated weekly on the CDC Data Tracker Demographics page.
  • From: Data Tracker
  • Risk: Mixed
  • Concerns: All

Read the full paper here.

March 25, 2023 Posted by | Deception, Science and Pseudo-Science | , , | Leave a comment

Russia Foreign Ministry calls for prosecuting Israelis responsible for Church of Gethsemane attack

Israeli police and firefighters outside the Gethsemane Church in Jerusalem after settlers attempted to set fire to the holy site [AHMAD GHARABLI/AFP/Getty Images]
MEMO | March 25, 2023

The Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has called for the trial of those responsible for the attack on the Church of Gethsemane in occupied Jerusalem.

On Friday, Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova shared an official statement: “We are convinced that there is no justification, and that there can never be any justification, for such criminal acts, and hope that the Israeli authorities will provide an unequivocal assessment of what happened and to take comprehensive measures to bring perpetrators to justice and prevent the recurrence of such attacks in the future.”

Zakharova expressed Moscow’s “profound concern” about such abusive behaviour, noting: “The number of anti-Christian incidents has grown at an alarming pace recently, as churches, cemeteries of various Christian denominations, clergy and monks have become targets for these attacks.”

On 19 March, two settlers stormed the church and tried to destroy its contents, inflicting physical harm on clergy members and intimidating visitors and pilgrims.

This is the fifth attack of its kind against Christian places of worship in occupied Jerusalem by Jewish extremists since the beginning of the year. Prior to this, settlers stormed the Church of the Flagellation in the Old City of Jerusalem, broke and destroyed some of its contents, and tried to set it on fire. The cemetery of the Episcopal Church was also attacked, in addition to attempts to break into the Armenian Patriarchate, while racist phrases were written on its walls.

March 25, 2023 Posted by | Illegal Occupation, War Crimes | , , , | 1 Comment

Putin: West’s Weapons Supply to Ukraine Won’t Be Enough to Outgun Russia

By Ilya Tsukanov – Sputnik – 25.03.2023

The United States and its European allies have sent tens of billions of dollars-worth of military equipment to Kiev to fuel a proxy war against Russia in Ukraine. Moscow has warned repeatedly about the consequences of these actions for regional and global security.

Western countries won’t be able to deliver enough weapons in Ukraine to outgun Russia, President Vladimir Putin has assured.

“Threats exist, of course. When weapons are supplied to a country we are in conflict with, this is always a threat. As for how they can be assessed, of course we know about the plans to supply them,” Putin said in an interview with Russian TV on Saturday, responding to a question about whether Moscow considers Western arms deliveries to Kiev a “threat” to national security.

“We see, hear about and know about these delivery plans. You mentioned one million shells, about the delivery of tanks. One million – is it a lot or a little? This is a significant amount. First of all, the leading NATO countries, let’s say the United States of America, according to our information, produce about 14,000-15,000 shells per month… Ukraine’s Armed Forces, according to our military’s estimates, use up to 5,000 shells per day of hostilities,” Putin said.

Russia is aware of NATO’s plans to ramp up shell production to 42,000 per month by this year, and to 750,000 per year by 2025, Putin said. “We don’t know yet what will happen in 2025, but right now, this year, 14,000-15,000 shells are being produced, despite the fact that Ukraine’s military is spending up to 5,000 per day,” he noted.

“We are concerned about [weapons deliveries] from the perspective that this is an attempt to prolong the conflict,” Putin said, noting that “from the point of view of the logic of those who provoked this conflict and are trying to preserve it at any cost, [the supply of weapons] is probably the right decision. But in my opinion, this will only lead to a greater tragedy,” he said.

Emphasizing that Russia will not allow for the “excessive militarization” of its economy, Putin said that to date, Moscow hasn’t reduced civilian construction, health care, education and infrastructure development, but the West will be forced to do so.

“The [NATO] ‘arsonists’ plan to send between 420 and 440 tanks to Ukraine. Here it is the same thing as with ammunition. During this period, we will produce and modernize over 1,600 tanks, Putin said. “The total number of tanks of the Russian Army will be three times greater than the number of tanks of the Ukrainian Armed Forces. Even more than three times,” he added.

Depleted Uranium Weapons

Putin disagreed with claims being made by Western officials and media that the depleted uranium weapons being sent to Kiev won’t result in any health or other consequences.

“This, of course, is not the case. The fact is that they do not belong to the category of weapons of mass destruction. That’s true. But the core of the projectile with depleted uranium (different materials can be used, it is used for armor-piercing purposes) still generates so-called radiation dust, and in this sense it of course amounts to a weapon of the most dangerous kind,” he said.

Russia has the means to respond, Putin warned. “Without exaggeration, we have hundreds of thousands, namely hundreds of thousands of such rounds. We haven’t used them yet,” he said.

The Russian president didn’t rule out that the UK’s announcement of DU munitions deliveries to Kiev were “deliberate” and designed specifically to try to disrupt this week’s talks between himself and Chinese President Xi Jinping to discuss Beijing’s 12 point Ukraine peace plan.

“On the same day that President Xi Jinping told me about the positive aspects of the Chinese plan to resolve the Ukrainian [crisis] by peaceful means, we learned about the supply of millions of shells to Ukraine from the Western countries which served as the instigators of the conflict. The next day, right before our meeting with the press, we learned about this story that the UK is planning to send depleted uranium shells,” Putin said. “It’s as if the West did this on purpose to somehow disrupt our negotiations or influence them somehow.”

The UK’s announcement of plans to send DU munitions to Kiev this week have sparked fears that wide swathes of Ukraine could become another depleted uranium-contaminated wasteland similar to parts of the former Yugoslavia and Iraq, where cancers and other illnesses have shot up dramatically in the aftermath of US and British DU use in the 1990s and 2000s. The Russian military’s chief of Radiation, Chemical and Biological Defense Troops warned Friday that the use of such arms would “cause irreparable harm to the health of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and the civilian population.”

Tactical Nukes in Belarus

Putin also commented on matters of strategic security, saying Moscow and Minsk had agreed in principle that, without violating its obligations under the New START Treaty, Russia will be able to deploy tactical nuclear weapons on Belarusian territory.

“We agreed that – in this sense, [Belarusian President] Alexander Grigorievich [Lukashenko] is right when he says ‘listen, we are your closest allies. Why do the Americans place nukes on their allies’ territory?’ They also engage, by the way, in the training of their pilots to use these weapons if necessary. We have agreed that if necessary, we will do the same thing, without violating our obligations – I would like to emphasize – without violating our international obligations on the nonproliferation of nuclear weapons,” Putin said.

“The United States has been doing this for decades. They have long placed their tactical nuclear weapons on the territory of allied countries, NATO countries, in Europe. In six states, if memory serves: Germany, Turkey, the Netherlands, Belgium, Italy and Greece. There are no nukes in Greece right now, but there is a storage facility,” Putin said.

Nord Stream Terrorism

Asked to comment on the investigations surrounding last year’s sabotage attacks against Russia’s Nord Stream natural gas pipelines, Putin expressed his “full agreement” with the sentiment that the blasts were the handiwork of US intelligence.

“An American journalist who has become quite famous in the world now, conducted… an investigation and came to the conclusion, as you know, that this explosion of the gas pipelines was organized by the special services of the United States. I absolutely agree with such conclusions,” Putin said, referring to the investigative work conducted by Seymour Hersh.

March 25, 2023 Posted by | Aletho News | , , , , | Leave a comment

Fake News Alert: Chinese “Patriots” Don’t Want To Retake Russia’s Far East

By Andrew Korybko | March 25, 2023

President Xi’s trip to Moscow to solidify the Sino-Russo Entente was the trigger event for prompting preplanned propaganda attacks aimed at driving a wedge between these two multipolar Great Powers. The latest one was carried out by Asia Times’ Jeff Pao in his article about how “China eyes Russia’s Far East resources, ‘patriots’ want more”, which reported on ultra-fringe commentary in Chinese online media agitating for their country to retake parts of Russia’s Far East.

The only reason why he and his outlet would amplify those views at this particular point in time is to mislead their targeted audience about China’s grand strategic intentions vis-à-vis Russia after President Xi’s trip to Moscow. By extending false credence to the unrealistic scenario of China retaking parts of Russia’s Far East, Pao is also implying that President Putin is irresponsibly ignoring a latent national security threat of the highest proportions. Neither of his narratives, however, have any factual basis.

Online commentary isn’t a reliable indicator for predicting any country’s future foreign policy, and Pao himself acknowledges in his agitprop piece that “In 1994, then-Chinese president Jiang Zemin and then-Russian president Boris Yeltsin signed an agreement to settle the sovereignty disputes.” Nevertheless, he still hinted that China’s recent directive referring to its former regions in that part of Russia by their traditional names suggests that it might eventually turn this into a territorial issue.

Pao is maliciously misinterpreting that development for information warfare purposes since he’s deliberately ignoring that all countries have the sovereign right to refer to anything however they want, especially if it’s a return to traditional names. While it’s true that in some contexts such a move could precede official claims to foreign territory, that’s not the case in Russian-Chinese relations, which remain rock-solid and have further strengthened as a result of President Xi’s trip to Moscow.

This information warfare agent even mentioned in his article that Russia is encouraging China to scale up its investments in the Far East, even going as far as to set up special economic regions there to facilitate that. He deserves credit for reporting on that fact, but it goes to show that he has ulterior motives in amplifying ultra-fringe commentary demanding that China retake parts of that region. There’s no reason for it to do so either since China already has access to whatever resources it wants there.

Those who speculate that it might countenance this scenario for “living space” are ignoring China’s declining birth rate and the “Heihe–Tengchong Line”, which shows that around 96% of its population resides in the 36% of the country’s eastern territory. Considering that there’s more than enough “living space” already within its own borders, its birth rate is declining, and it has access to whatever resources it wants from Russia, there’s no reason for China to think about retaking parts of the Far East.

These objectively existing and easily verifiable facts expose Pao as the propagandist that he is, who either produced his agitprop under orders from Asia Times’ editors or did so on his own initiative, but in either case he’s someone whose pieces about Russian-Chinese relations can’t be trusted. His agenda is to mislead to people into thinking that China is about to stab Russia in the back while President Putin remains oblivious to this treachery, which isn’t true at all and shouldn’t be taken seriously by anyone.

March 25, 2023 Posted by | Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , | 1 Comment

Zelensky Admitted That Ukraine Already Ran Out Of Ammo

By Andrew Korybko | March 25, 2023

The US-led West’s Mainstream Media (MSM) began reporting more accurately on the military-strategic dynamics of the NATO-Russian proxy war in Ukraine since the start of the year, but the true test of their comparatively improved integrity will be whether they raise awareness about Zelensky’s latest damning admission. In an interview with Japanese newspaper Yomiuri Shimbun, he candidly told his interlocutors that “We do not have ammunition. For us the situation in the East is not good.”

This is a major revelation for several reasons. First, it proves that Russia is winning NATO’s self-declared “race of logistics” in the sense that its armed forces still have ammo to continue fighting while the West’s Ukrainian proxies already ran out of that which their patrons provided over the past year. Second, the aforesaid aid that was already extended to this crumbling former Soviet Republic exceeds $100 billion, which makes Russia’s leading position in this “race of logistics” all the more impressive.

Third, Zelensky’s admission adds credence to what the Washington Post recently reported regarding how poorly Kiev’s forces are faring in this conflict, especially its “severe ammunition shortages” that one of its sources spoke about. Fourth, the preceding points drastically decrease the chances that Kiev’s upcoming counteroffensive will achieve much of anything and actually make it increasingly likely that such a move would be an epic mistake that could ultimately lead to a decisive Russian breakthrough.

And finally, it can therefore be expected that Zelensky and his agents of influence across the West will beg for even more aid, arguing that the failure to pay up would risk making their prior investments in this proxy war all for naught if Kiev ends up losing to Russia. The problem, however, is that no amount of money can make ammunition appear out of thin air since it requires a lot of time to scale production accordingly to meet these newfound exorbitant needs.

The very fact that Ukraine is out of ammunition proves that the West’s defeat in its self-declared “race of logistics” with Russia might already be a fait accompli by this point since it’s clear that Kiev can’t keep pace with its opponent despite being backed by all of NATO’s military-industrial capacity. Zelensky almost certainly didn’t realize that his candid admission essentially amounted to this, but it’s presently unclear whether the MSM will inform their audience about this or not.

On the one hand, doing so could contribute to his forthcoming begging campaign, but it could also backfire if taxpayers start asking whether it’s worth ponying up even more money if Ukraine already ran out of ammo despite the over $100 billion in aid that it’s received thus far. After all, if that astronomical sum wasn’t enough to keep their guns firing, then there’s no telling how much will be needed for Kiev to reconquer more of its lost territory like it intends to do.

Not only that, but as was earlier explained, no amount of money can make ammunition appear out of thin air. Quite clearly, fundamental changes in the Ukrainian Armed Forces are needed in order to indefinitely perpetuate this conflict like the US is plotting to do, but its fighters can’t immediately transition to using exclusively Western equipment when they’re used to operating Soviet-era wares. This poses a dilemma since Russia keeps moving further ahead in this “race of logistics” as each day goes by.

Objectively speaking, the military-strategic dynamics are trending in the Kremlin’s favor, which would ordinarily compel Kiev to seriously consider China’s peace plan if it wasn’t for its American overlords preventing it from doing so. The longer that Zelensky remains resistant to the very thought of a ceasefire, the greater the chances are that Russia will transform its growing advantage in its “race of logistics” with NATO into a decisive victory that could result in Ukraine losing even more territory.

March 25, 2023 Posted by | Aletho News | , | 3 Comments

Hungary comments on Ukraine’s NATO and EU bids

RT | March 25, 2023

Hungary will not agree to Ukraine joining NATO and the EU as long as Kiev continues to discriminate against ethnic Hungarians living in Transcarpathia, Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto has said.

Szijjarto added that he raised the issue at a meeting with the UN assistant secretary general for human rights, Ilze Brands Kehris.

Up to 99 Hungarian primary and secondary schools are in danger of being closed in Ukraine due to the nation’s education law, Szijjarto said. “I made it clear to Ilze Brands Kehris… that Hungary will not be able to support Ukraine’s transatlantic and European integration [bids] under any circumstances as long as Hungarian schools in the Transcarpathia region are in danger,” the minister wrote on Facebook on Friday.

Kiev has been cracking down on minority language rights for years. Laws enforcing the use of Ukrainian in education and television were adopted as early as 2017 under then-President Pyotr Poroshenko. In 2018, another law banned the teaching of Russian, as well as Romanian, Polish, and Hungarian beyond the primary school level.

In 2019, the Council of Europe’s Venice Commission criticized Ukraine’s State Language Law, saying it “fails to strike balance between strengthening Ukrainian and safeguarding minorities’ linguistic rights.”

Budapest has been among the most vocal critics of Kiev’s language policies in the West. According to Szijjarto, Ukraine has not done anything substantial to address Hungary’s concerns.

“For the past eight years, we have continuously received promises from the Ukrainian authorities that they will solve this problem, but they have not actually done anything,” he said.

Around 156,000 ethnic Hungarians live in Ukraine, most of them in the western region of Transcarpathia. Ukraine is also home to around 150,000 ethnic Romanians and more than 250,000 Moldovans, and Bucharest previously joined Budapest in demanding that the language laws be revised.

In February, Szijjarto announced that the Council of Europe will review Kiev’s treatment of minorities and issue a report on its alleged discrimination against ethnic Hungarians and Romanians living in Ukraine this summer. He pointed to yet another law adopted in December 2022, which mandated the use of Ukrainian in most aspects of daily and public life, including schools.

March 25, 2023 Posted by | Civil Liberties | , , , , | Leave a comment

‘Bring Our Troops Home’: Matt Gaetz, Rand Paul Repeat Call for Syria Pullout Amid New Attacks

By Ilya Tsukanov – Sputnik – 25.03.2023

President Joe Biden warned Friday that Washington would “act forcefully to protect our people” against attacks by “Iranian-backed” groups in Syria, which were blamed for a kamikaze drone attack that killed a US contractor Thursday. A US service member was reportedly injured Friday after attacks on US bases at Syria’s largest oil and gas fields.

A group of anti-interventionist Republicans in the House and Senate have repeated calls for a US pullout from Syria after a fresh round of violence in the war-torn country left a contractor dead, another injured, and up to half a dozen US service members wounded in two days of violence.

“Warmongers in both parties say keeping troops in Syria is necessary to preserve the balance of power. That is simply not true. If they believe that, they should say it directly to the parents of Americans in Syria who have to sleep there tonight and guard oil fields against Iranian drones. We need to bring our troops home,” Matt Gaetz wrote in a tweet late Friday.

“It is deeply sad to continue to see Americans killed and troops injured in Syria. This is the price of guarding oil fields in other countries, presumably forever,” Gaetz wrote in a separate tweet.

In a video accompanying Friday’s post of a statement he made on the House floor, Gaetz reiterated that it was “not appropriate to put Americans at risk” in Syria, and said that he was “shocked” that the deployment of US forces had not already caused an “escalatory accident” or more casualties.

“The Kurds have an opportunity to pave their path, let’s pave ours. And if we’re so worried about threats to the homeland, how about we actually focus on our true point of vulnerability, which is not the emergence of some caliphate – it’s the fact that terrorists are crossing our southern border on a daily, weekly, monthly basis. We’ve seen far less concern about that than we undeniably should be,” the lawmaker said.

Congressman Ben Cline of Virginia signaled his agreement with Gaetz, tweeting that this week’s violence was “EXACTLY why” he “voted to remove the US Armed Forces From Syria and bring our troops home” in Gaetz’s recent House resolution on the issue.

Kentucky Senator Rand Paul also brought up the week’s violence as evidence of the need to get troops out of the war-torn country. “Bring our troops home from Syria and end every unauthorized war going on today. Return the power to engage in war to Congress. Our service members deserve it. The Constitution demands it,” Paul tweeted.

The Senate voted down Paul’s amendment to rescind the 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF) this week, with just four Republicans, four Democrats, and Bernie Sanders, an independent who caucuses with Democrats, voting to repeal the resolution – which has served as the legal tool allowing the president to dispatch troops abroad without asking Congress for over two decades.

In mid-March, the House voted down Gaetz’s resolution to withdraw US troops from Syria 321-103, with the Florida congressman and other members of the pro-Trump Freedom Caucus showing a rare display of bipartisan unity alongside members of the Democratic Congressional Progressive Caucus in the vote to bring troops home. Other Republican supporters of the resolution included Representative Paul Gosar of Arizona, Chip Roy of Texas, Thomas Massie of Kentucky and Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia. On the Democrat side were Representative Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Rashida Tlaib of Michigan, and others. 56 House Democrats and 47 Republicans voted in favor of the resolution in total.

Former President Donald Trump first ordered the withdrawal of US troops in Syria in late 2019, but quickly backpeddled by saying US forces would remain in the country to “take the oil” and “keep the oil” – in violation of international laws on plunder.

In late 2020, former Trump Pentagon aide Douglas Macgregor was reportedly instructed by the president to try to pull US troops from Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Germany, and Africa before President Biden’s inauguration in early 2021. During the transition period, Pentagon officials openly boasted that they played “shell games” with the White House to cover up troop numbers and prevent a pullout.

Syrian officials have spent years attacking their US counterparts and Washington’s Kurdish allies for plundering the war-torn country’s energy resources, and want all foreign forces not explicitly invited into the country by Damascus to withdraw immediately. The US-led pillage of Syria has cost the government hundreds of billions of dollars in revenues needed for reconstruction, and has continued even in the wake of last month’s devastating earthquakes. On Saturday, Syrian media reported that a massive 148-vehicle convoy including 80 tankers loaded with stolen oil and 60 refrigerator and cargo trucks had been spotted heading toward the illegal al-Walid crossing with Iraq.

The Pentagon responded to Thursday’s attack on a US base in Hasakah, Syria with airstrikes, reportedly killing over a dozen “pro-Iran targets.” Biden blamed Iran for the attacks, saying that while the US “does not seek conflict with Iran,” Tehran should “be prepared for us to act forcefully to protect our people.”

The US leader did not elaborate on what his “people” were doing occupying oil fields in Syria, well over 9,000 km from America’s shores. Iran has dispatched military advisors and other forms of support to Syria over the past decade to assist Damascus in the Western-funded dirty war against the country, but denies open involvement in the conflict.

March 25, 2023 Posted by | Illegal Occupation, Militarism | | 1 Comment


The Highwire with Del Bigtree | March 23, 2023

German Health Minister, Prof. Dr. Karl Lauterbach just made a massive mistake on-air. He recently went on a German news station and admitted COVID vaccine injury is 1 in 10,000 with no way of helping the injured. The genie is out of the bottle never to return again. But is that the real rate? Jefferey Jaxen reports.

March 25, 2023 Posted by | Science and Pseudo-Science, Video, War Crimes | , | Leave a comment