Aletho News


How to fight for Covid truth

By Guy Hatchard | TCW Defending Freedom | May 6, 2023

The writer is in New Zealand.

Every day brings more news of extreme efforts to promote biotech vaccines and cancel those asking questions.

For example Dr Mark Tykocinski, an immunologist with a spotless academic record who is president of Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia may be about to lose his job. His sole mistake appears to be liking tweets by former New York Times journalist Alex Berenson who questions vaccine safety.

British MP Andrew Bridgen has been expelled from the Conservative Party. According to Bridgen, a senior UK politician has privately admitted to him that he may well be right about Covid vaccine harms, but said the government is expecting to suppress public information about Covid vaccine adverse effects for the next 20 years, citing ‘lack of political appetite’ for a public disclosure.

Statistician Professor Norman Fenton was locked out of his Twitter account following a complaint that he had broken German law by claiming Covid data manipulation was creating the appearance of vaccine efficacy, when in fact there was none. The German government is the main sponsor of BioNTech, the co-creator of the Pfizer mRNA Covid vaccine. Fortunately the complaint was not upheld and Fenton was reinstated.

Te Whatu Ora (Health New Zealand) has announced that from May 1, pregnant people (!) aged 16 to 29 years can now get an additional Covid-19 booster. They don’t seem to have noticed that stillbirths and miscarriages rose following the Covid vaccine rollout, or the absence of any data to confirm ‘safety’ assurances for pregnant women – quite the reverse, in fact.(See this article.) Is it possible that the NZ government have a lot of boosters left over after a poor response to their latest bivalent vaccine campaign and are now trying to offload them via deceptive advertising to mothers who naturally want to do the best for their child?

Highly vaccinated Portugal has seen a 73 per cent rise in emergency callouts for heart attacks. This mirrors the 83 per cent rise in heart attack hospitalisation in Wellington, NZ.

The continuing attacks from the media and vaccine advocates mean that some people must be seriously worried that the scientific data about vaccine harms is beginning to resonate with a wider audience. We are winning the argument.

Last week I reported correspondence from our Minister of Statistics Dr Deborah Russell MP in which she downplayed the significance of rising excess deaths in New Zealand. This appeared to be the result of misinformed policy rather than real statistics. Does the New Zealand government, in line with the UK, wish to hide Covid vaccine adverse effect statistics from the public until it becomes a matter of distant history? You tell me.

Should we be protesting on the streets?

In fact both the vaccinated and unvaccinated have been injured by government policy and experimental biotechnology. Even the pro-vaccine, pro-zoonotic origin NY Times has conceded that evidence is mounting that Covid came from a lab leak. We have a common cause.

It would certainly suit those who wish the pandemic gravy train and the biotech boom to continue, if the population were to remain polarised and the adverse effects hidden. At this time, it is my belief that launching ad hominem attacks, participating in lawful protests or expressing violent sentiments (never a good idea) will simply play into the hands of those from the media, corporates, medical professions and governments who are hoping that public concern can continue to be managed, marginalised and cancelled.

But this doesn’t mean remaining silent, we should be raising our voices and using our pens. I do believe we should always talk rationally and factually about issues that matter. This is an election year in New Zealand, when there is a higher chance of being heard. We can talk to candidates and demand answers, or even become candidates. In an election year, politicians know that all votes will matter. We can raise a voice of reasoned intelligence, express ourselves calmly, cite research, and send letters to our politicians. Politicians cannot find papers to back their views; published research is now firmly on our side of the debate. Our points cannot be dismissed.

Again and again I come back to ‘knowledge matters’. It might still be possible to nip dictatorial control in the bud before it gains more traction.

May 5, 2023 Posted by | Full Spectrum Dominance, Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | | Leave a comment

Chilean journalist arrested in Ukraine

RT | May 5, 2023

The Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) on Friday confirmed the arrest of Gonzalo Lira, a Chilean national living in Kharkov, suspecting him of pro-Russian sympathies. Lira was detained in April 2022, but released after a week and ordered not to leave the city.

According to a SBU statement quoted by Ukrainian media, Lira “publicly justified the armed aggression” of Russia, denied or glorified alleged Russian war crimes, and “engaged in discrediting the top military and political leadership and the Defense Forces of our state.”

The SBU filmed Lira’s second arrest by heavily armed agents, blurring out the faces of everyone involved.

He is suspected of “producing and distributing materials justifying the armed aggression of the Russian Federation against Ukraine, committed repeatedly.” A court ordered him jailed pending the outcome of the investigation.

The SBU has reportedly seized Lira’s computer and multiple cell phones as evidence.

Lira, 55, is a writer and filmmaker who used to work in the US. Several years ago, he moved to Kharkov, where he got married and began blogging as ‘Coach Red Pill’.

This is the second time he has been detained by the SBU. He was first arrested in April 2022, but was released after a week. No charges were pressed at the time, and Lira would not discuss the details of what happened, saying only that he was not allowed to leave Kharkov.

He blamed the US outlet Daily Beast for directing Kiev’s attention to his work, accusing the outlet of trying to get him killed. The tabloid had reported on Lira’s activities in March 2022, calling him “sleazy” and a “pro-Putin shill,” and noting its reporters had reached out to Ukrainian authorities.

While Lira kept a low profile for several weeks after his release, he eventually returned to social media and continued voicing criticism of Kiev’s policies. Since then, Ukraine has enacted laws criminalizing dissent and allowing President Vladimir Zelensky to ban opposition political parties, nationalize the media and even persecute the Ukrainian Orthodox Church for being in canonical communion with Moscow.

May 5, 2023 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance | , | Leave a comment

Scientists Against Science: RCTs Which Give the Wrong Answer on Masks Are “the Worst Way to Answer the Question”


Paradigm shifts in science are rare, but it seems we may have just had one. The RCT (randomised controlled trial), an experimental method used to test if medical procedures and drugs work, has long been considered the gold standard method of establishing the relationship between cause and effect. But it may just have been knocked off its perch and usurped by a new approach to seeking evidence.

Based on the first such study by James Lind in 1774 when he rid the Royal Navy of scurvy, the method in its simplest form involves giving one group of people a treatment and withholding it from another group and seeing if the treatment group fares better than the other (control) group. There is no evidence that Lind randomised the sailors on which he tested lemons as a cure for scurvy; randomisation, to avoid bias in who does and who does not receive treatment, was introduced much later. There are many modern variations on the theme of the RCT but, essentially, they are all designed to achieve the same thing.

As an experimental method for trying to settle whether treatments worked, the clinical trial took a while to catch on with the first RCT being published in 1948. Until that time, what was purported to work was based on power and opinion and, therefore, largely on who said it. Other, weaker designs based on observation and correlation abounded but, eventually, were superseded by the RCT.

Of course, not every RCT produces the same results due to an annoying phenomenon called ‘regression to the mean’ whereby observed effects are often obtained one day and inverse effects are obtained on another day. To account for regression to the mean, it is considered necessary to combine the results of similar studies to be able to pinpoint, at any time, where the true effect lies. Thus, the science of meta-analysis arose which does precisely that and the most rigorous repository of such analyses is considered to be the Cochrane Collaboration.

Well, forget all the above. It seems we have been following the wrong lines of investigation — especially when it comes to the use of face masks to prevent the spread of respiratory infections (e.g. COVID-19) — and that we should simply have asked the experts what they thought all along. In view of what we have witnessed in the past few years, what could possibly go wrong?

I may be doing them a disservice, but that is my interpretation of a recent article in STAT of May 2nd titled: ‘Do masks work? Randomised controlled trials are the worst way to answer the question.’ STAT is a newsletter that purports to be “Reporting from the frontiers of health and medicine” and the authors of the article are Baruch Fischhoff, Howard Heinz University Professor in the Department Engineering and Public Policy and Institute for Politics and Strategy Carnegie Mellon University, Martin Cetron an infectious disease epidemiologist who has worked for the CDC and Katelyn Jetelina, an epidemiology, data scientist, and science communicator who publishes a Substack, Your Local Epidemiologist.

Such is their faith in experts (and I assume they see themselves as such), with respect to RCTs on the use of face masks they “believe that many of these studies should never have been done at all, reserving resources for studies that could improve health outcomes”. The recent pair of Cochrane meta-analyses of studies on the use of face masks concluded that:

Pooled results of RCTs did not show a clear reduction in respiratory viral infection with the use of medical/surgical masks. There were no clear differences between the use of medical/surgical masks compared with N95/P2 respirators in healthcare workers when used in routine care to reduce respiratory viral infection.

Our paradigm-shifting team is not impressed, however: “Both meta-analyses have been widely misinterpreted as showing that face masks don’t work.” I cannot be certain but, had the Cochrane review shown a positive result regarding the use of face masks, my guess is that they would have been proclaiming that from the rooftops.

With apologies for lengthy quotes, they also say that:

What if it is so difficult to conduct scientifically sound randomised trials of mask wearing that even the best studies reveal little? Such studies can confuse people who want to know how effective face masks are, while emboldening people who are already completely convinced that face masks are ineffective — and are looking for grounds to sow doubt about them.

Clearly they see themselves as being above the misinterpretation of data to satisfy their own predilections; being “convinced” can work both ways.

With reference to the much-quoted and much-maligned DANMASK study where the difference observed between mask mandates and no mask mandates was “not statistically significant”, they conclude — presumably as the outcome, inconveniently, did not fit their prejudices – that “The designs of most clinical trials are too weak to answer the question that they pose — namely, whether an intervention succeeded”. Plus: “RCTs have value only when researchers can be sure that the treatment is administered as intended.” Perhaps they meant to say: “RCTs have value only when they show us what we want to see.” Besides, knowing whether an intervention works in practice rather than when done perfectly is valuable information from a public health point of view.

However, they do not leave us with no hope and inform us that: “Today, we have strong evidence regarding the effectiveness of face masks in the form of laboratory studies, theoretical analyses and RCTs that involved health care personnel. It has not come from RCTs of face masks distributed to the general public.” They do not trouble us ignoramuses with any details of this strong evidence, unless their hypertexted link to some words in an earlier sentence are meant to do the job. I guess they did not expect many people to go past the various subsequent links to read the material. It is fascinating stuff. The link eventually enables the explorer to download a ‘Rapid Expert Consultation on the Effectiveness of Fabric Masks for the COVID-19 Pandemic (April 8th 2020)’. This is a document written by experts which relates a series of studies on the likely effectiveness of face masks. No method is applied to the selection of studies which show a 100% publication bias. They have all been ‘cherry-picked’ to show exactly what the authors want them to show: that face masks could work.

Conveniently, the authors of the STAT article fail to refer to Cochrane reviews of precisely the kind of studies they advocate. A 2015 review of studies titled ‘Gloves, gowns and masks for reducing the transmission of meticillin‐resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in the hospital setting’ concluded: “The effects of gloves, gowns and masks in these circumstances have yet to be determined by rigorous experimental studies.” In a 2016 review of studies titled ‘Disposable surgical face masks for preventing surgical wound infection in clean surgery’, the authors concluded: “From the limited results it is unclear whether the wearing of surgical face masks by members of the surgical team has any impact on surgical wound infection rates for patients undergoing clean surgery.”

Naturally, readers of the Daily Sceptic have the humility to admit that absence of evidence is not conclusive – though a null result from an RCT is not really absence of evidence but evidence of absence within the bounds of the trial’s limitations. In these circumstances, is it acceptable to impose a costlypolluting and potentially harmful intervention on the public? I think not.

Dr. Roger Watson is Academic Dean of Nursing at Southwest Medical University, China. He has a PhD in biochemistry.

May 5, 2023 Posted by | Science and Pseudo-Science | | Leave a comment

Documents show how CBC leaned on Twitter to censor content

By Cindy Harper | Reclaim The Net | May 5, 2023

Journalist Matt Taibbi has corroborated claims made by Rebel News that the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) coerced Twitter to suppress voices and organizations it found disagreeable, even going as far as threatening litigation if the social media platform failed to oblige.

Earlier this week, Rebel News released documents indicating that the CBC exerted pressure on Twitter to silence specific individuals and groups, many of whom have been criticized by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

These documents contained correspondence between Michele Austin, former Director of Public Policy for Twitter in the US and Canada, and key figures within the CBC, including President Catherine Tait and Cam Gordon, who at the time headed communications for Twitter in Canada. Austin’s communication with Gordon revealed that the CBC had explicitly threatened legal action during a call with the pair, prompting them to terminate the conversation.

Austin further deliberated on whether they should respond to a letter sent by the CBC or simply ignore it, while also mentioning that she had already escalated the case.

Another email highlighted by Taibbi was sent by Claude Galipeau, a CBC executive, addressed to several Twitter executives and Tait. The email contained a follow-up letter regarding the issue they had previously discussed on May 26, 2021.

Additional documents obtained by Rebel News showed that Tait warned Twitter that the CBC would cease advertising on the platform if it failed to suppress the voices that the publicly-funded media organization wanted censored.

May 5, 2023 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Corruption, Full Spectrum Dominance | , , | Leave a comment

Zelensky must choose between talks or losing more territory – former US Army chief

By Ahmed Adel | May 5, 2023

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky will have to choose between peace talks with Moscow or the continuation of the conflict and the loss of more territory, former US Army Lieutenant Colonel Daniel Davis wrote in an article.

“Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky is loath to agree to any deal that leaves Ukrainian territory in Russian hands. The reality, however, is that he does not have what it takes to fully force Moscow off his territory. The most realistic choice he faces is between negotiating an end to the fighting that allows Ukraine to hold what it has, or to continue fighting and lose even more ground. That decision is Zelensky’s alone to make, but America also has agency and must look out for its own interests,” Davis wrote in 19FortyFive.

According to him, the counteroffensive of the Ukrainian Armed Forces is unlikely to be successful since they do not have enough troops to cope with the Russian military given the superiority in the number of soldiers, weapons, and equipment.

The former lieutenant colonel also reflected on his own country’s policy regarding the armed conflict, lambasting the promise to continue giving Ukraine what it needs “for as long as it takes” because it is not a sustainable strategy and will almost certainly not produce a beneficial result for either the US or Ukraine. “A course correction is therefore required,” he stressed.

Davis added that many in Europe already recognise that Ukraine cannot win in a practical time frame at a reasonable cost.

In the end, the author states that, “as horrible as it would be for us to accept ending the war on undesirable terms, it would be even worse to ignore reality and continue pursuing an unattainable military objective. The cost for the former is unpleasant. The cost to the latter could be infinitely worse.”

In early April, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken hinted that the Ukrainian Armed Forces might carry out an offensive in the coming weeks. For his part, the Ukrainian Defence Minister, Oleksii Reznikov, appealed to wait until the end of the mud season, known as Rasputitsa, so that the roads are useable.

Spokesman for the Russian Presidency, Dmitry Peskov, noted that any statements about the planned offensive by the Ukrainian military are being carefully monitored and considered in their own planning of the special military operation. In this way, Russia has had ample time to prepare for this Ukrainian offensive, and although gains might initially be made, it is expected that it will fizzle out and be followed by a major Russian counterattack.

The New York Times noted that if the Ukrainian military are not successful in pushing back Russian forces, Western support for Ukraine might weaken. This is especially the case since war weariness and economic crises are gripping the EU and USA.

None-the-less, the European Commission adopted on May 3 the Act in Support of Ammunition Production (ASAP) “to urgently deliver ammunition and missiles to Ukraine and to help Member States refill their stocks.”

“By introducing targeted measures including financing, the Act aims at ramping up the EU’s production capacity and addressing the current shortage of ammunition and missiles as well as their components. It will support the destocking from Member States and the joint procurement for ammunition,” the announcement added.

For her part, President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, said: “We stand by our promise to support Ukraine and its people, for as long as it takes. But Ukraine’s brave soldiers need sufficient military equipment to defend their country.”

However, for all the talk of supporting Ukraine “for as long as it takes,” it is doubtful that EU member states will continue draining their economies and resources in the long-term because Kiev refuses to negotiate. This will become especially apparent as elections begin creeping up in member states and people’s fury about the dire economic situation are expressed.

In the same light as Ursula von der Leyen, White House spokesman John Kirby revealed on May 3 that the US has already handed over almost 100% of the military aid that Kiev requested for its offensive but this will not prevent them from making further deliveries.

There is evidently a clear divide between Western rulers and experts, especially when recalling that former US Army Lieutenant Colonel Daniel Davis is far from the only expert urging for negotiations since Ukraine does not have a chance of winning the war despite all the brave talk and propaganda.

Pumping resources to the Ukrainian military stems from the fact that if Kiev’s offensive is unsuccessful the West would have failed in its task to preserve Ukraine’s pre-war borders and halt Russia’s advances, in addition to wasting billions upon billions of dollars to their own immense detriment. But as said, for now, it is only Western experts, and not the rulers, who are willing to face this reality.

Ahmed Adel is a Cairo-based geopolitics and political economy researcher.

May 5, 2023 Posted by | Economics, Militarism | , , , | Leave a comment

US to set up military bases in Finland

By Drago Bosnic | May 5, 2023

The formal admission of Finland on April 4 was the latest move in the process of “globalizing” NATO. At the time, the belligerent alliance’s Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg insisted that Helsinki’s membership “will be good for [its] security, for Nordic security, and for NATO as a whole.” Nobody ever explained how exactly this is “good for Finland’s security”. Russia and Finland share a border over 1300 km long, meaning its ascension has nearly tripled the line of direct contact between NATO and Russia, as the combined border between them has previously been approximately 700 km. Now being well over 2000 km long, the border could be a major source of tensions.

Precisely this is happening now, as the United States and Finland are finalizing a deal that would allow the Pentagon to establish a permanent military presence in the Scandinavian country. According to a report by Newsweek, published on May 2, a senior official of the Finnish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mikael Antell, confirmed that Helsinki and Washington DC are negotiating a so-called “Defense Cooperation Agreement” (DCA) that would allow for the construction of significant military infrastructure on Finnish soil. Apparently, the aforementioned agreement doesn’t include the deployment of US nuclear weapons, yet. However, the Finnish government and military officials are yet to specifically rule out the possibility of hosting nukes.

Considering the fact that, for months, Helsinki has been refusing to give any guarantees such weapons will not be deployed on its territory, this is quite telling and concerning. While the US already has nuclear weapons stationed in five NATO countries under several bilateral nuclear sharing programs with each, specifically Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Italy and Turkey, these are relatively far away from core Russian regions. On the other hand, Finland is not. Saint Petersburg, Russia’s second most important city, is less than 200 km away from the Finnish border, putting it well within the range of tactical ballistic, cruise and, most alarmingly, prospective hypersonic missiles (provided the US deals with its technological shortcomings).

If Helsinki and Washington DC were to go ahead with such plans, it would be the first case that a country has hosted American nuclear weapons after the end of the (First) Cold War. The same goes for Poland, whose insistence on having nuclear weapons deployed on its territory has already pushed Russia to deploy its own tactical warheads in Belarus. Finnish Foreign Ministry official Mikael Antell stated that the DCA “enables troops to enter the country, stay on the ground, the pre-storage of material and possible infrastructure investments through the funds granted by the US Congress to the Pentagon”. The US and Finland have allegedly been in talks on the DCA since last fall, with the latest round of discussions on the deal taking place in Helsinki last week.

“The agreement also defines the facilities and areas where the cooperation would be focused,” Antell said, adding: “They are basically military areas and garrisons. In principle, there can be more than one, but the discussions are still open in this regard.”

Commenting on the aggressive military buildup, Russian military expert Yuri Knutov told Sputnik: “The Northern Sea Route – a shipping lane that runs along Russia’s Arctic Sea coast – has become a prominent transport artery of late, and Moscow now seeks to increase maritime traffic and cargo flow along that lane. Therefore, the emergence of NATO military bases at the entrance to the Northern Sea Route would require us to boost security measures, to bolster our Northern Fleet and maybe even to deploy our warships to escort cargo vessels in order to protect the latter from any provocations or from some restrictions concocted by Western countries.”

The exact nature of permanent US military presence in Finland is not officially disclosed, although Knutov pointed out that “Helsinki did not attempt to negotiate issues such as the maximum number of foreign NATO troops that could be deployed on its soil, which appears to suggest that Finland is willing to let NATO use its territory without any limitations”. This notion is particularly worrying when counting the strong possibility of nuclear weapons being deployed so close to core Russian regions. Moscow previously never saw Finland as a direct threat, but its membership in NATO, a hostile and extremely aggressive military alliance that openly declared and targeted Russia as its primary enemy, completely changes the geopolitical calculus, a move that Helsinki chose to do unilaterally.

After Finland joined NATO, several high-ranking Russian officials stated that Moscow will respond in kind in case of further escalation and NATO military buildup, but insisted that Helsinki is still not seen as a primary military threat. However, from a purely strategic standpoint, the situation can hardly be considered optimistic. Finland directly broke from its apparent neutrality after it decided to acquire F-35 fighter jets in late 2021. The Pentagon has direct access to everything the F-35’s sensors can detect, meaning that Finland would be sharing key military data with the US regardless of whether it was a NATO member or not. Still, as previously mentioned, Helsinki being a member also means that it’s more likely to see the deployment of US offensive weapons in close proximity to St. Petersburg.

In this regard, when Stoltenberg stated that the ascension of Finland was truly historic, he was right. However, this was only in the sense that Helsinki is essentially repeating the same mistake as over 80 years ago when it joined the Axis led by Nazi Germany. Worse yet, just like Adolf Hitler’s Third Reich established military bases in Finland and deployed the Wehrmacht there just before launching “Barbarossa”, the US is doing exactly the same. Now that Finland is among “old friends” once again, maybe it should dust off the history books and pay very close attention to how such military and geopolitical adventurism ended the last time. The belligerent thalassocracy in Washington DC should be even more concerned, as Finland at least continued to exist in the postwar period. On the other hand, Nazi Germany didn’t.

Drago Bosnic is an independent geopolitical and military analyst.

May 5, 2023 Posted by | Militarism | , , , | Leave a comment

The climate scaremongers: How the ‘world disaster’ figures lie

By Paul Homewood | TCW Defending Freedom | May 5, 2023

According to AP last year:

 ‘A disaster-weary globe will be hit harder in the coming years by even more catastrophes colliding in an interconnected world, a United Nations report issued Monday says. If current trends continue the world will go from around 400 disasters per year in 2015 to an onslaught of about 560 catastrophes a year by 2030, the scientific report by the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction said. By comparison from 1970 to 2000, the world suffered just 90 to 100 medium to large scale disasters a year, the report said.

‘The number of extreme heat waves in 2030 will be three times what it was in 2001 and there will be 30 per cent more droughts, the report predicted. It’s not just natural disasters amplified by climate change, it’s Covid-19, economic meltdowns and food shortages. Climate change has a huge footprint in the number of disasters,’ report authors said.’

The UN report included this graph, showing how the number of disasters were now five times as high as in the 1970s:

Last week it was the turn of the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) to bang the climate change drum. Their State of the Global Climate 2022 report commented: ‘From mountain peaks to ocean depths, climate change continued its advance in 2022 . . . Droughts, floods and heatwaves affected communities on every continent and cost many billions of dollars. While greenhouse gas emissions continue to rise and the climate continues to change, populations worldwide continue to be gravely impacted by extreme weather and climate events.’

The WMO is, of course, a UN body, so unsurprisingly this report has little to do with science and everything to do with politics.

But have natural disasters become so much more common in recent years? A closer look at that graph above reveals that the number of disasters has actually been declining since 2000, a fact which should immediately cast doubt on the ‘global warming is making everything worse’ meme.

The real reason for the ‘increase’ is that many natural disasters in years past were never officially logged in the UN database, called EM-DAT, which is compiled by CRED, the Center for Research on the Epidemiology of Disasters. The database was not created until 1998, and CRED relied on informal reports for disasters prior to that year.

CRED has acknowledged that many events were missed by them in the past. In their 2006 report, they warned that earlier data was incomplete and should not be used for comparing long-term trends. In particular, over the past 30 years development in telecommunications, media and increased international cooperation has played a critical role in the number of disasters reported. In addition, increases in humanitarian funds have encouraged reporting of more disasters.

In fact the unreliability of the database in earlier years is much worse than we thought. Take a look, for example, at the official data for the number of deaths from floods in the UK:

Now look again, and see if you can spot what is missing. Yes, the North Sea floods in 1953, recognised as one of the worst natural disasters ever to hit Britain, and which left 307 dead on the east coast alone. The death toll in 1952, by the way, reflects the Lynmouth disaster, which killed 34.

How any supposedly reputable database can omit an event like the 1953 flood and still claim to be credible is beyond me. Other bad flooding events have also been missed, such as those in Somerset in 1968 which killed 15 people.

Flooding events in the UK have been thoroughly recorded as far back as the 19thC and beyond. If CRED cannot even get accurate data for the UK, what chance is there of compiling full and accurate data for the rest of the world?

The truth about the looming energy shortage

UK FIRES is a five-year research programme funded by £5million of government money, a collaboration between the universities of Cambridge, Oxford, Nottingham, Bath and Imperial College London. Its job is to look at what Net Zero means in practical terms for the economy.

The researchers have a habit of revealing the harsh realities of Net Zero which are deliberately hidden from us by the government and its advisers. For instance, in their 2019 report, called Absolute Zero, they calmly informed us that we would all have to drive less, use less energy, and stop eating beef and lamb. All UK airports except for Heathrow, Glasgow and Belfast would have to close by 2030, and those three would also have to go by 2050. All shipping to and from Britain would have to be phased out as well.

Their report on the construction sector last November told us that no bricks, cement or glass would be allowed in our bright new future. Instead we would have to make do with recycled materials, along with stone, earth and timber. A sort of cross between Fred Flintstone and Mad Max!

Their latest analysis came out last month, looking at the prospect for UK energy supplies under current emission reduction targets. The government has pledged to reduce emissions by 68 per cent from 2018 levels by 2035.

According to UK FIRES, to do this we need to be constructing 14GW of low carbon generation every year until 2035, whereas the current rate is only about 2GW. (They do not tell us, by the way, how we can build wind farms and nuclear plants without cement and steel!)

One problem is that it is now taking more than 20 years to build a large nuclear power station. It seems unlikely therefore that we will see Sizewell C before the 2040s, even if contracts were signed today.

According to UK FIRES, they have been pointing out this energy shortfall for a while, but government and the civil service prefer to stick their heads in the sand. Not that UK FIRES are concerned either, because they just want us to drastically cut the amount of energy we use instead.

Over the next eight years, they say, we must cut our car mileage by a fifth, consume a third less beef, lamb, milk and cheese, replace millions of gas boilers with heat pumps, and spend tens of billions that we have not got on insulating our homes.

Industry must halve its use of construction materials, such as cement and steel, and shut half of the county’s blast furnaces. With all this and more, we will be able to reduce the country’s energy use by 30 per cent. All in the next eight years; after that it really gets tough!

For years, successive governments, along with the Committee on Climate Change, other advisers, and the complicit media, have lied to us, pretending that we could chart a path to Net Zero without any real cost or consequences. Thanks to UK FIRES, we are beginning to get a glimpse of the truth. And the public will be horrified and extremely angry when they discover they have been duped.

May 5, 2023 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Science and Pseudo-Science | | Leave a comment

CIA May Be Regarded Around World as a Rogue Elephant, But Operatives Can Still Churn Out Books that Make Themselves Look Like Heroes

And the Washington foreign policy establishment still eats them up

By Rick Sterling | CovertAction Magazine | May 1, 2023

In 1975, Philip Agee published his book Inside the Company: CIA Diary. In the introduction, he wrote: “When I joined the CIA, I believed in the need for its existence. After twelve years with the agency I finally understood how much suffering it was causing, that millions of people all over the world had been killed or had their lives destroyed by the CIA and the institutions it supports. I couldn’t sit by and do nothing and so began work on this book.”

Enrique Prado’s book, Black Ops: The Life of a CIA Shadow Warrior (New York: St. Martin’s Press, 2022), is written for the opposite purpose. Prado says, “This book is my attempt to correct the misperceptions that make the Agency one of the least understood and most mistrusted institutions in America today. The reality we faced on the ground in places from Muslim Africa to East Asia, to our own streets here at home, is one of persistent threats that must be countered to keep our people safe.”

Prado’s memoir was approved for publication by the CIA. It is self-laudatory and highly critical of restraints on the CIA. It confirms that, while the ability to assassinate at will was temporarily restricted, CIA sabotage and paramilitary operations against other nations have continued non-stop.


Enrique (Ric) Prado’s father lost his business in the Cuban Revolution and Ric came to the U.S. as a youth in the early 1960s. He grew up in greater Miami. The Vietnam War was raging and his “dream was to go to Vietnam.”

After high school, Ric enlisted in the U.S. Air Force and received training in rescue operations including parachute jumping and scuba diving. Prado’s dream was dashed because the Vietnam War was winding down and the U.S. military downsizing.

Prado alludes to his involvement with Cuban-American gangs and some troubled years. Then, starting with contract work, Prado began to perform assignments for the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).

A young Ric Prado in Hialeah, Florida. [Source:]

Prado and the Contras

Prado’s timing was late for Vietnam but just right for Central America. In 1979 the Sandinista Revolution overthrew the Somoza dictatorship in Nicaragua. As a Spanish-speaking Latino, Prado was not a typical Anglo-American. He was recruited as a CIA officer responsible for overseeing the development of the Contra army based in Honduras and conducting cross-border attacks on communities in Nicaragua.

He writes, “In these early days, there were only five CIA officers who interfaced directly with the Contras in Tegucigalpa; none were yet in the field.” There were “ten camps that lay scattered along the Honduran Nicaraguan border.” Ric Prado became the CIA officer responsible for going to the camps to coordinate support and conduct weapons training.

Prado admits the Contra leadership came from the corrupt Somoza regime: “Others who had been part of Somoza’s military…formed the core leadership of the Contras.” Initially, Washington subcontracted the job of mobilizing the Contras to Argentinian military officers who had experience from their own dirty war and death squads. Prado is extremely critical of the Argentinian military trainers, calling them a “den of snakes” and stating that, “to a man, I found them to be useless parasites.” The Argentinian military trainers were supplanted by CIA personnel, with Ric Prado playing a leading role overseeing Contra operations from Honduras and later in the “southern front” in Costa Rica.

In the Reagan years, Ric Prado (clutching rocket launcher) trained the Contras to fight communist Sandinistas as part of the CIA’s “tip of the spear” in Nicaragua.

During the Reagan years, Ric Prado (clutching rocket launcher) trained  Contras to fight communist Sandinistas as part of the CIA’s “tip of the spear” in Nicaragua. [Source:]

The CIA is funded by Congress and acutely aware of its public image. Whether it is creating negative press for “enemies” such as Nicaragua, Cuba or Russia, or creating positive press for itself, manipulating the media is an important part of its work. Prado talks about the political benefits of recruiting Indigenous Miskitos to the Contras: “Miskitos were popular with several U.S. political sectors. Among Native Americans and some prominent liberals, the Miskitos were considered to be the oppressed, indigenous forces untainted by association with Somoza. That political viability back in the States with elements often hostile to the Agency helped us enormously.”

Dinner in one of the Miskito camps, Prado on the right, where living conditions were primitive at best.

Dinner in one of the Miskito camps, Prado on the right, where living conditions were primitive at best. [Source:]

The unofficial war on Nicaragua included attacks on infrastructure which echo today with the U.S. sabotage of the Nord Stream gas pipelines. Prado proudly documents the attack on the Puerto Cabezas pier and underwater gas pipeline: “The dock included an integrated fuel pipeline for faster transfer of oil from tankers. If we could destroy this… we’d make a big statement by blowing up the key link between the Sandinistas and their communist allies….We received exactly what we needed: a specialized underwater demolition charge that combined compactness with tremendous blast power….The charge exploded…the blast was so large it destroyed the fuel pipeline.”

Prado documents the failed attempt to blow up a bridge at Corinto on the Pacific coast. For unknown reasons, Prado was re-assigned and left Honduras in March 1984 after four years managing the Contras. He returned to the Contra campaign in the summer of 1986. They had safe houses and secret bases in ranches along the Nicaragua-Costa Rica border. It was more difficult because the Costa Rican government did not support the Contras as Honduras did.

Prado carried all these weapons while fighting the Sandinistas in Nicaragua.

Prado carried all these weapons while fighting the Sandinistas in Nicaragua. [Source:]

Prado briefly describes the sensational events in October 1986 when a CIA plane dropping supplies and weapons to Contras was shot down. The pilot and two others on the flight died, but ex-Marine Eugene Hasenfus survived and was captured. Unmentioned in the book, this was a sensational news event at the time. Beyond the drama of an American plane being shot down over Nicaragua and an American captured and taken prisoner, it revealed the CIA was violating the congressional Boland Amendment prohibiting U.S. military support for overthrowing the Nicaragua government.

The Reagan administration denied responsibility. Elliott Abrams, the Assistant Secretary of State for Inter-American Affairs, said:“The flight in which Mr. Hasenfus took part was a private initiative…It was not organized, directed or financed by the U.S. Government.” The counter-evidence was overwhelming and the CIA was caught red-handed violating the congressional resolution and then lying about it. This is unmentioned in the book. Instead, Prado criticizes Hasenfus for having personal identification papers in his possession.

José Fernando Canales, the Sandinista soldier who shot down Eugene Hasenfus’s plane with a surface-to-air missile, leads his hapless captive through the jungle on October 5, 1986. [Source:]

Prado’s Pride

In 1990, after ten years of terrorist attacks by the Contras, combined with economic and political attacks from Washington, Nicaraguans cried “Uncle” and voted the Sandinistas out of power.

Prado says, “our Contra program was a definitively successful black op carried out solely by key personnel from the CIA.” Prado stated further that “that Cuban kid who lost his native country to revolutionaries now helped cut off some of the communist tentacles that threatened to engulf Latin America.”

Ric Prado in action. [Source:]

Prado believes the use of a proxy army to fight against a perceived enemy was an important victory and re-established the credibility of the CIA. He says, “The Contras resuscitated the post-Vietnam decimated CIA back to relevance.”

Prado is annoyed at negative media portrayals of the CIA Contra program. The movie American Made, depicting the story of an American pilot taking guns to the Contras and bringing cocaine back into the U.S., is especially annoying to Prado. He ignores the fact that tens of thousands of Nicaraguans died and cocaine inundated some U.S. cities as a byproduct of the Contra program.

Prado believes that the CIA were the “good guys” in Nicaragua. The International Court of Justice thought otherwise.

In 1986 the court ruled that the U.S. attacks on Nicaragua were violations of international law. The Reagan administration and media largely ignored the ruling.

Later, journalist Gary Webb documented the catastrophic social damage inside the U.S. caused by the cheap cocaine flooding some U.S. cities. Webb was attacked by establishment media. However, in 1998, the CIA Inspector General acknowledged“There are instances where C.I.A. did not, in an expeditious or consistent fashion, cut off relationships with individuals supporting the contra program who were alleged to have engaged in drug-trafficking activity, or take action to resolve the allegations.”

The 2014 movie Kill the Messenger, based on the true and tragic story of Gary Webb, was undoubtedly another movie that irritated Ric Prado.

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Justifying Terrorism and Sabotage

Prado’s justification for CIA crimes against other countries is U.S. national security. He says, “The spread of communism through Central and South America became a direct threat to the security of the United States.” He compares the war against “communism” to the World War II fight against Nazi Germany. He says, “The Sandinistas quickly consolidated their power through Nazi-like pogrom and oppression.” Prado says that training the Contras was like “being an OSS officer trying to train and supply the French resistance to the Germans in WW2.”

The U.S. deployed Nicaraguans, Afghans and extremist Arab recruits in proxy wars across the globe. Prado assesses this a great success: The Mujahedin in Afghanistan and Contras in Nicaragua “played crucial roles in the Cold War’s final act.”

Prado does not mention the fact that the Sandinistas were voted back into power in Nicaragua in 2006 after 16 years of neo-liberal rule. The country was in very poor shape with privatized education, little health care, and terrible infrastructure. Since being voted back, the Sandinistas have won increasing levels of support because they have substantially improved the lives of most Nicaraguans. As in the 1980s, Nicaragua is back on the U.S. enemy list and Western media portrayals are universally negative.

Prado in Other Countries

The “CIA shadow warrior” went on to conduct operations in Peru, the Philippines, South Korea and an unnamed African country, probably the Central African Republic. “We were the leadership cadre, spearheading America’s effort against global terrorism.”

Prado says, “Radical Islamic terrorism at the turn of the century morphed into a deadly new enemy.” With the attacks of 9/11, the U.S. homeland was suddenly the victim of a real attack. The timing was very convenient for war hawks and those who wanted a “new American Century.” From being a president who took office under highly contested circumstances, Bush became a “war President.” The 9/11 attack provided a Pearl Harbor moment justifying U.S. military aggression in the Middle East.

Prado describes the fervor and intensity with which the CIA responded: CIA agents worked long hours to identify, capture and sometimes kill those deemed to be “enemy combatants.” Some of these suspects were tortured in violation of the UN Convention Against Torture, to which the U.S. is a signatory. The “CIA shadow warrior” is dismissive of the critics. The “much maligned enhanced interrogations [were] sparingly performed on known terrorists.”

“Jungle of Criminality”

Prado views the world as “a jungle of criminality, corruption, betrayals, and atrocious human rights abuses we were determined to help eradicate.” There are numerous allusions to the “good guys” fighting the “bad guys.”

Prado does not attempt to argue with critics who say some CIA actions are violations of international law and human rights. It is estimated that 30,000 Nicaraguans died in the Contra War. This is ten times more than died in the attacks of 9/11 in a country that only had 3.3 million people at the time.

Prado’s claim that Sandinista Nicaragua posed a threat to U.S. “national security” stretches credulity. The CIA actions not only violated international law; they violated U.S. law. … Full review

May 5, 2023 Posted by | Book Review, Deception, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , | 1 Comment


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May 5, 2023 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance, Video | | 2 Comments