Aletho News

ΑΛΗΘΩΣ

India May Join China In Bid To Lower Oil Prices

By Tsvetana Paraskova | Oilprice.com | July 27, 2021

The world’s third-largest crude oil importer, India, could join China in tapping into its strategic petroleum reserve in a bid to sell lower-priced crude to its refiners amid rallying international oil prices.

India is reportedly considering selling half of its SPR to attract private participation in expanding its strategic storage capacity, government sources told Reuters last week.

The sale of crude from reserves could also be a move from one of the importers most sensitive to price hikes to reduce the price of crude for its refiners, Reuters columnist Clyde Russell says. India’s SPR currently holds around 36.5 million barrels of crude oil.

India has been the most vocal critic of the OPEC+ production reduction pact this year, saying that it does not support “artificial cuts to keep the price going up.” On several occasions, India’s top officials have criticized OPEC+ for keeping the market tight and prices high and have expressed concern that the higher crude and fuel prices in India would slow down the economic and oil demand recovery.

India’s move to commercialize half of its SPR is primarily aimed at raising financing for additional SPR storage, but it could also ensure cheaper oil from storage to Indian refiners, according to Reuters’ Russell.

Last week, reports emerged that the world’s top oil importer, China, is looking to tap its crude reserves.

China has started to release more than 20 million barrels of crude oil from its strategic reserve in a move seen as seeking to curb the recent oil price rally, Energy Intelligence reported last week, quoting trading sources. The reported release from the strategic petroleum reserve is also aimed at putting inflation under control.

Various market and trade sources told Energy Intelligence that China was about to release the equivalent of between 22 million barrels and over 29 million barrels, or between 3 million and 4 million tons.

July 29, 2021 Posted by | Economics | , | Leave a comment

Where’s the Rage for Israel and NSO’s Pegasus the West Had for China’s Huawei?

By Morgan Artyukhina – Sputnik – 21.07.2021

Anger has swirled around the globe over revelations that Pegasus spyware created by Israeli software firm NSO Group has been used by governments to wiretap journalists and public figures. However, the fury is mild when compared to claims Beijing compelled Huawei to put a “backdoor” into its phones, which has never been proven.

Earlier this week, a group of news outlets including the Washington Post and Forbidden Stories, along with human rights group Amnesty International, revealed disturbing findings: governments around the globe have been buying up Pegasus spyware from NSO Group and using it to spy on journalists, public figures, and even other world leaders.

50,000 Phones Targeted

Thousands of phone numbers are on the list, with some of the biggest names including French President Emmanuel Macron and Moroccan journalists Omar Radi, both allegedly wiretapped by Morocco, and journalist Jamal Khashoggi, allegedly wiretapped by his native Saudi Arabia prior to being killed by a Saudi hit squad at the Saudi consulate in October 2019.

In all, 180 journalists were targeted in 20 countries, including Kazakhstan, India, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Azerbaijan, Hungary, Morocco, Rwanda, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Mexico, Egypt, Algeria, Togo, Turkey, France, Spain and the United Kingdom. They also targeted at least 65 business executives, 85 human rights activists, 189 journalists, and more than 600 politicians and government officials, including high-level officials like cabinet ministers, diplomats, and military officers, according to The Washington Post.

Also on the list were 10 prime ministers, three presidents, and one king, including Iraqi President Barham Salih, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, the prime ministers of Pakistan, Egypt, and Morocco, and seven former heads of government from Lebanon, Uganda, and Belgium, and several other countries.

Shalev Hulio, NSO’s chief executive and co-founder, has cast the story as flimsy, but said the company is “investigating every allegation … and if we find that it is true, we will take strong action.”

“NSO Group’s technologies have helped prevent terror attacks, gun violence, car explosions and suicide bombings. NSO Group is on a lifesaving mission and the company will faithfully execute this mission undeterred, despite any and all continued attempts to discredit it on false grounds,” the company told the US Public Broadcasting Service.

On Wednesday, the firm put out a press release saying “enough is enough,” announcing it would cease responding to media inquiries about what it called a “vicious and slanderous campaign.”

“NSO is a technology company. We do not operate the system, nor do we have access to the data of our customers, yet they are obligated to provide us with such information under investigations,” the company added.

​The Israeli government has confirmed it “approves the export of cyber products exclusively to governmental entities, for lawful use, and only for the purpose of preventing and investigating crime and counterterrorism, under end use /end user certificates provided by the acquiring government. In cases where exported items are used in violation of export licenses or end use certificates, appropriate measures are taken.”

However, it denied having any knowledge of the use of Pegasus to spy on other targets, and noted to the Post that “Israel does not have access to the information gathered by NSO’s clients.”

That said, a former senior US national security official who has worked closely with the Israeli security services also told the outlet “It’s crazy to think that NSO wouldn’t share sensitive national security information with the government of Israel. That doesn’t mean they’re a front for the Israeli security agencies, but governments around the world assume that NSO is working with Israel.”

How Have Nations Reacted?

Representatives from many of the nations implicated in the investigation have unanimously denied the reports they spied on journalists, dissidents, and world figures, insisting their governments are based on the rule of law. However, it’s notable that not all of the countries where journalists were targeted have been asked for comment, with France, Spain, and the UK being notable exceptions.

Asked by The Hindu, a White House spokesperson said on Wednesday that “The United States condemns the harassment or extrajudicial surveillance of journalists, human rights activists, or other perceived regime critics.”

However, despite the admission by NSO that it sells such software and by Israel that it, at the very least, approved of each sale, and in light of comments by foreign intelligence officials that Israel likely materially benefitted from the affair by gleaning information from the group, it seems that a bigger scandal would be expected. But not a single government has demanded punishment for either NSO or Israel, or decried even the possibility that Israel helped countries wiretap people not suspected of criminal actions, or raised fears that a country’s government likely got ahold of classified information from them via illegal means.

There have been no calls for sanctions against Israel or NSO or any senior figures at NSO, or prosecutions, or frankly even acknowledgements that the affair is even happening outside of dry-mouthed condemnations. In fact, the only calls for sanctions have been by journalists themselves, such as the Intercept’s Ryan Grim and Electronic Intifada’s Ali Abuminah.

​The reactions – and lack thereof – stand in stark comparison to how Chinese tech giant Huawei has been treated.

Huawei Crucified Without Evidence

Shenzhen-based Huawei is the world’s largest manufacturer of both telecommunications equipment and smartphones and a major supplier of 5G internet service. The company was started in 1987 by Ren Zhangfei, a former Chinese military engineer, although he owns less than 2% of its shares, which are owned by Huawei employees.

The US has claimed for years that Ren’s military experience and membership in the Communist Party of China make Huawei a security liability, but in 2018 a more concerted effort began aimed at forcing US military and government agencies from using products by Huawei and another Chinese phone maker, ZTE, claiming that the CPC had forced Huawei to insert a secret “back door” into its phones and networks, enabling the Chinese government to spy on users if so desired.

The company and the Chinese government have both denied that such a backdoor does or even could exist or that they would pursue one if it were possible.

“If they believe there’s a backdoor, they should offer evidence to prove it,” Huawei chairman Liang Hua challenged US intelligence in January 2019. At the time, Washington said it didn’t need to, citing Huawei’s alleged proximity to the Chinese government as sufficient proof.

However, as the US began hounding allies in Germany and the “Five Eyes” nations to drop Huawei’s technologies, it did begin providing them with evidence to support its claims – evidence London, Berlin, and Paris all said wasn’t very convincing. Still, within months each of them had either rejected bids by Huawei or suddenly found new evidence to justify falling into line with US demands.

The firm was placed on a US blacklist in 2019, requiring Americans to obtain a special license from the US Department of Commerce before doing business with Huawei, effectively banning Americans from buying Huawei’s phones, and several nations have now sanctioned Huawei as well. The company’s CFO, Meng Wanzhou, was also arrested in Canada in connection with charges in a US court that aren’t related to the espionage allegations but which are widely seen as further persecution of the company.

The sanctions had their effect, too: in March, a first-quarter earnings report showed its sales down 16.5% year-on, part of a trend that caused it to sell its Honor smartphone marquee last year.

Legacy of Israeli Spying on Allies

In September 2019, Politico reported that US government officials had concluded Israel was responsible for placing cell phone surveillance devices called “Stingrays” around Washington, DC, and had even used them to spy on White House communications. A former senior official used as a source for the article said the devices were likely intended to spy specifically on then-US President Donald Trump, a known lover of his iPhone.

Then-Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu dismissed the report, saying, “Israel doesn’t conduct espionage operations in the United States, period.”

However, the claims go back much further. In 1985, US intelligence analyst Jonathan Pollard was arrested, charged, and later convicted of espionage after he passed classified US Navy documents to Israel, including dirt on Israel’s Arab neighbors, for $1,500 a month.

 Jonathan Pollard, U.S. Navy ID picture

Israel also spied on then-US Secretary of State John Kerry in 2014 and 2015 during negotiations for what became the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, according to reports by Der Spiegel and the Wall Street Journal.

In 2017, Le Monde revealed that Israel’s Mossad had penetrated the French intelligence directorate in what it called Operation Ratafia, with the goal of developing close relationships with fellow spies “to the point of crossing the line of turning them into double agents.”

None of these brought calls for sanctions, either, revealing how politically motivated the attacks on Huawei and other Chinese tech firms really are. Why does the West continue to tolerate the Israeli government spying on them and their citizens?

July 21, 2021 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Timeless or most popular | , , , , | 1 Comment

China: US-led hacking allegations fabricated out of nothing

Press TV – July 20, 2021

China has roundly rejected the “groundless” and “irresponsible” hacking allegations made by the United States and its allies, saying they are “fabricated out of nothing.”

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian hit back at Washington on Tuesday, calling the US the “world champion” of cyber-attacks.

“The US has mustered its allies to carry out unreasonable criticisms against China on the issue of cybersecurity,” he said. “This move is fabricated out of nothing.”

In a coordinated move, Washington and several allies in Europe and Asia publicly accused Beijing of hacking the Microsoft Exchange Server software in March. Microsoft Exchange is an email platform used by corporations around the world.

Senior US officials claimed that hackers tied to China’s Ministry of State Security carried out the unusually indiscriminate hacking. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Monday that Washington and “countries around the world” are holding China “accountable for its pattern of irresponsible, disruptive, and destabilizing behavior in cyberspace, which poses a major threat to our economic and national security.”

Japanese government spokesperson Katsunobu Kato followed suit on Tuesday, saying that Japanese companies had been targeted by a hacking group called APT40. He alleged that “the Chinese government is highly likely” behind the attack.

Earlier, China’s diplomatic missions around the world reacted to the charges.

The Chinese Embassy in New Zealand’s capital, Wellington, said the accusations were “totally groundless and irresponsible” and a “malicious smear.”

“Given the virtual nature of cyberspace, one must have clear evidence when investigating and identifying cyber-related incidents,” said the embassy.

The Chinese mission in Canberra said Australia was “parroting” US rhetoric. It also described the US as “the world champion of malicious cyber-attacks.”

The United Kingdom (UK) and European Union (EU) also joined the others in accusing China of carrying out hacking attacks, which they alleged to have targeted an estimated hundreds of thousands of mostly small businesses and organizations.

The Chinese Embassy in Norway also reacted to the allegations made by Oslo, saying that Beijing was a staunch defender of cyber security and was resolutely opposed to any form of cyberattacks.

“It is reasonable to question and doubt whether this is a collusively political manipulation,” it said, demanding that Oslo provide evidence for the claims. The embassy said that Beijing was “willing to cooperate with all relevant parties, based on facts and evidence, to jointly combat illegal activities in cyber space.”

The US-led global campaign against China is an apparent move to open a new front in cyber offensive following years of blaming Russia for cyberattacks against American organizations. Moscow time and again denied involvement.

July 20, 2021 Posted by | Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , | 5 Comments

Afghanistan Faces a New Future With Some Positive Signs

By James ONeill – New Eastern Outlook – 12.07.2021

The news from Afghanistan is not good for the Americans. The troops abandoned the Bagram military base in the dead of night without bothering to advise their Afghanistan “allies”. Looters moved in before being replaced by the Taliban forces who naturally rejoiced at the treasure trove of weapons and other equipment that the Americans had abandoned.

Throughout the rest of the country the Taliban are making record advances and it is now likely only a matter of weeks before they control the whole of the country. The rapid defeat of the regular government troops has raised some alarm in countries on Afghanistan’s borders. In particular the rapidly changing situation in Afghanistan has raised concerns among member states of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) several of whom share borders with Afghanistan.

The rapidly changing situation has led to China’s foreign minister Wang Yi to make urgent visits to 3 countries that share a border with Afghanistan. The visits come at the invitation of the governments of Turkmenistan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan and will take place between July 12th and 16th.

These meetings will precede a meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation-Afghanistan contact group. The object of the meeting is for the parties to exchange views on promoting peace in the region, including, importantly, increasing the level of cooperation between the SCO and Afghanistan.

The rapid United States withdrawal from Afghanistan has given rise to a level of instability in Afghanistan that China, among other neighbouring countries, fears create instability within their own territories.

The SCO has a potentially important role to play in promoting stability in Afghanistan which is one of four observer states of the SCO. Six of Afghanistan’s neighbours are members of the SCO. As such the SCO is uniquely placed to promote a range of development assistance to Afghanistan, including the promotion of projects to develop Afghanistan rich resources. The latter have largely been neglected through the 20 years of American occupation and that of its allies.

A Taliban spokesman Suhail Shaheen gave an interview to This Week in Asia last Wednesday. Mr Shaheen said that the Taliban sees China as a friend and once they hold power they will engage in talks with China about beginning the process of reconstruction of the country’s assets, neglected during the years of occupation.

And important announcement made by the Chinese government through its foreign minister Wang Yi was for an expansion of the huge Pakistan – China economic development corridor to include Afghanistan. If this succeeds it will play an important role in securing Afghanistan’s economic recovery, which has essentially been handicapped for the past 20 years by continuous warfare.

It is clear that Russia will be an important part of Afghanistan’s redevelopment. Although the Russian government does not officially recognise the Taliban group it has nonetheless played host to several important meetings in Moscow involving representatives of the Taliban regime. When asked about a possible Russian return to Afghanistan the foreign minister Sergei Lavrov was dismissive. It is clear that any future Russian involvement in the country will be in the context of the SCO.

At the request of the Tajikistan government Russia has sent a contingent of troops to that country to assist with border protection. The Tajikistan government became alarmed at the influx of Afghan refugees across its borders which threatened the country’s capacity to cope with a sudden and large influx of refugees.

The numbers however, remain relatively small. They do not begin to compare with the estimated 1.5 million Afghans who have sought refuge in Pakistan over the years. The Pakistan government is sympathetic to the Taliban, which is one reason why it refused an American request for the use of its military facilities following the United States withdrawal from Afghanistan, now scheduled for August.

The Americans have announced that they reserve the right to mount air attacks in Afghanistan, presumably flying from one of their Middle East bases. It is difficult to see the rationale behind this announcement. The United States has no sustainable interest in Afghanistan. The flights will presumably be in support of Afghan government troops, but it is difficult seeing the latter having any substantial role following the inevitable Taliban takeover of the country which must now be only a matter of time.

The position of other foreign troops must also be open to question. The Australian government for example, has been conspicuously quiet on the fate of its military contingent in Afghanistan which began 20 years ago. They were first committed to Afghanistan following 11 September 2001 attacks [?] on the World Trade Centre and have been there ever since. The then Australian Prime Minister John Howard cited the ANZUS treaty as the rationale for the involvement, the only time the treaty has ever been invoked.

A number of Australian troops are now under investigation for allegedly murdering Afghanistan prisoners. Whether that matter now proceeds in the light of Australia’s withdrawal of his troops from Afghanistan is an open question. Post withdrawal support for the Afghan government is now conspicuously absent. The response to a Taliban takeover is unknown, but it is unlikely to be favourable.

Afghanistan’s best hope for the future lies in its association with the SCO. The early signs are encouraging with a positive response being shown both by the Taliban leadership and also the major countries involved in the SCO, especially China and Russia. For the first time in several decades, Afghanistan future at last looks positive.

James O’Neill, an Australian-based former Barrister at Law

July 13, 2021 Posted by | Economics | , , , | Leave a comment

China may be building new nuclear missile silos in its western desert… but only in response to American aggression

By Tom Fowdy | RT | July 7, 2021

US reports claiming Beijing is greatly strengthening its nuclear arsenal can’t be confirmed, but it wouldn’t be surprising, given Washington’s threats against Beijing and its military build-up in the region.

Much has been said recently about an exclusive report published in the Washington Post analysing satellite imagery that purports to show China building intercontinental ballistic missiles in its northwestern province of Gansu, claiming that China is gearing up its ‘second-strike capability’ and in turn strengthening its nuclear arsenal.

The report follows a running theme in US military circles that Beijing poses a growing “nuclear threat” to the United States, with Pentagon spokesman John Supple telling CNN: “Numerous Defense Department leaders have testified and publicly spoken about China’s growing nuclear capabilities, which we expect to double or more over the next decade.”

On the other hand, pro-China voices on Twitter were quick to dismiss the report’s findings and argue that the construction sites were, in fact, wind farms. While it’s difficult to verify these claims, of course, it’s likewise important to remember that, beyond US hysteria, China’s nuclear arsenal is tiny in comparison to America’s (currently some 250 to 350 warheads versus 3,800), and it operates according to a ‘no first use’ policy (Washington’s doesn’t).

It would be unsurprising if growing military tensions between the two states and a perceived fear of encirclement by the US and its allies was pushing China to strengthen its military hand. Although it would be ridiculous to accuse China of a ‘Cold War-style’ build-up, it makes logical sense for Beijing to ramp up its capabilities.

The original Cold War between the United States and the USSR was defined for most of its history by a dramatic increase in nuclear missile capabilities on both sides, which, at its peak in the 1980s, saw Moscow accumulate almost 40,000 warheads. This dramatic stockpiling created a constant fear of global nuclear annihilation and was pushed to the brink through episodes such as the Cuban Missile Crisis, yet, ultimately, the equilibrium of ‘mutually assured destruction’ ensured that conflict between the two superpowers never broke out.

This is not comparable to the current tensions between China and the United States. While Beijing has had nuclear weapons since 1964, it has been largely reserved on its objectives of maintaining a ‘basic deterrent’ of around 300 warheads – comparable to the numbers held by the UK and France.

Its nuclear goals are not as America’s are, to uphold military hegemony over the rest of the world, but to protect its national sovereignty and territorial integrity. That, of course, includes obvious red lines such as Taiwan, and this could be part of the reason it may be increasing its numbers and ‘flexing’ its approach as tensions with the United States rise.

Washington’s bellicose language towards Beijing, and its growing militarisation around China’s periphery, including expanding its relationship with Taiwan, is increasingly aggressive. As a report from a Washington foreign policy magazine put it: “The US military is encircling China with a chain of air bases and military ports.” Faced with such threats, what nation would not seek to up its defence capabilities?

The Washington Post report is correct to frame China’s potential activities as a reaction to these developments, and to call it a ‘second-strike’ capability, though the weapons’ use to deter a Taiwan contingency is not unimaginable.

The missile silos’ location in Gansu is strategically significant. First, the province is situated deep into China’s interior, towards Xinjiang. It’s an isolated desert region that is west of the core of China’s population and away from its industrial and urban sprawl. This reduces liability for those areas in times of conflict and makes the weapons easier to hide and disguise.

Second, the location makes it far more difficult for enemy fighters to reach and disable the silos. Could US fighter jets go thousands of kilometres inland into China to conduct pre-emptive strikes on military infrastructure and not be shot down? They have clearly been carefully placed to play to China’s geographical strengths.

Thirdly, Gansu, being near Xinjiang and Tibet, may have been chosen to cater to another opponent as well as the United States. Although we are talking here about what are apparently intercontinental ballistic missiles that can travel more than 9,000km (5,600 miles), allowing them to reach the American mainland, they could also reach greater continental Eurasia and the Indian Ocean, giving options against the US’ Indo-Pacific Strategy as a whole and Beijing’s geopolitical rival in New Delhi. This did not go unnoticed in the Indian media.

In this case, one might describe China’s potential nuclear build-up, if proven, as a deliberately ambiguous effort undertaken in reaction to the shifting military environment in the region and not an effort to pursue nuclear domination or hegemony, but to tilt the balance of power in its favour and strengthen its leverage in the surrounding regions.

Ultimately, if the United States is seeking to increasingly equip its allies, strong-arm them into anti-China coalitions, pursue a growing number of military exercises in and around the Indian and Pacific Oceans, and press on all of China’s insecurities, of course, Beijing is going to react, but it will do so, as it always does, in a more subtle and less overt way.

There will be no nuclear confrontation between the United States and China, and nor does Beijing anticipate one, but the route towards some form of arms build-up has been inevitable for a long time. Don’t expect China to showcase this or publicize its true capabilities, but rather to keep its opponents guessing – and on their toes.

Tom Fowdy is a British writer and analyst of politics and international relations with a primary focus on East Asia.

July 8, 2021 Posted by | Militarism | , | Leave a comment

America Leader of the Free World? How to Forget U.S. interference in Foreign Elections

By Philip Giraldi | Strategic Culture Foundation | July 1, 2021

After only five months in office, [proclaimed] President Joe Biden has already become notorious for his verbal gaffes and mis-spokes, so much so that an admittedly Republican-partisan physician has suggested that he be tested to determine his cognitive abilities. That said, however, there is one June 16th tweet that he is responsible for that is quite straightforward that outdoes everything else for sheer mendacity. It appeared shortly after the summit meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin and was apparently intended to be rhetorical, at least insofar as Biden understands the term. It went: “How would it be if the United States were viewed by the rest of the world as interfering with the elections directly of other countries and everybody knew it? What would it be like if we engaged in activities that he engaged in? It diminishes the standing of a country.”

There have been various estimates of just exactly how many elections the United States has interfered in since the Second World War, the numbers usually falling somewhere between 80 and 100, but that does not take into account the frequent interventions of various kinds that took place largely in Latin America between the Spanish-American War and 1946. One recalls how the most decorated Marine in the history of the Corps Major General Smedley Butler declared that “War is a racket” in 1935. He confessed to having “…helped make Mexico, especially Tampico, safe for American oil interests in 1914. I helped make Haiti and Cuba a decent place for the National City Bank boys to collect revenues in. I helped in the raping of half a dozen Central American republics for the benefits of Wall Street. The record of racketeering is long. I helped purify Nicaragua for the international banking house of Brown Brothers in 1909-1912. I brought light to the Dominican Republic for American sugar interests in 1916. In China I helped to see to it that Standard Oil went its way unmolested.”

And there have been since 1900 other regime change and interventionist actions, both using military force and also brought about by corrupting local politicians with money and other inducements. And don’t forget the American trained death squads active in Latin America. Some would also include in the list the possibly as many as 50 Central Intelligence Agency and Special Ops political assassinations that have been documented, though admittedly sometimes based on thin evidence.

That Joe Biden, who has been at a reasonably high level in the federal government for over forty years, including as Vice President for eight years and now President should appear to be ignorant of what his own government has done and quite plausibly continues to do is astonishing. After all, Biden was VP when Victoria Nuland worked for the Obama Administration as the driving force behind efforts in 2013-2014 to destabilize the Ukrainian government of President Viktor Yanukovych. Yanukovych, an admittedly corrupt autocrat, nevertheless became Prime Minister after a free election. Nuland, who is the Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs at the State Department, provided open support to the Maidan Square demonstrators opposed to Yanukovych’s government, to include media friendly appearances passing out cookies on the square accompanied by Senator John McCain to encourage the protesters.

A Dick Cheney and Hillary Clinton protégé who is married to leading neocon Robert Kagan, Nuland openly sought regime change for Ukraine by brazenly supporting government opponents in spite of the fact that Washington and Kiev had ostensibly friendly relations. As Biden’s tweet even recognized in a backhanded way, it is hard to imagine that any U.S. administration would tolerate a similar attempt by a foreign nation to interfere in U.S. domestic politics, particularly if it were backed by a $5 billion budget, but Washington has long believed in a global double standard for evaluating its own behavior. Biden clearly is part of that and also clearly does not understand what he is doing or saying.

Nuland is most famous for her foul language when referring to the potential European role in managing the unrest that she and the National Endowment for Democracy had helped create. The Obama and Biden Administration’s replacement of the government in Kiev was the prelude to a sharp break and escalating conflict with Moscow over Russia’s attempts to protect its own interests in Ukraine, most particularly in Crimea. That point of conflict has continued to this day, with a U.S. warships in the Black Sea engaging in exercises with the Ukrainian navy.

Biden was also with the Obamas when they chose to destabilize and destroy Libya. Nor should Russia itself be forgotten. Boris Yeltsin was re-elected president of Russia in 1996 after the Clinton Administration pumped billions of dollars into his campaign, enabling him to win a close oligarch-backed victory that had been paid for and managed by Washington. Joe Biden was a Senator at the time.

And then there is Iran, where democratically elected Mohammed Mossadeq was deposed by the CIA in 1953 and replaced by the Shah. The Shah was replaced by the Islamic Republic in turn in 1979 and the poisoned relationship between Washington and Tehran has constituted a tit-for-tat quasi-cold war ever since, marked by assassinations and sabotage.

And who can forget Chile where Salvador Allende was removed by the CIA in 1973 and replaced by Augusto Pinochet? Or Cuba and the Bay of Pigs invasion in 1961 where the CIA failed to bring about regime change in Havana? Can it be that Joe Biden cannot recall any of those “interventions,” which were heavily covered in the international media at the time?

And to make up the numbers, Joe can possibly consider the multiple “interferences in elections,” which is more precisely what he was referring to. As a CIA officer stationed in Europe and the Middle East in and 1970s through the early 1990s, I can assure him that I personally know about nearly continuous interference in elections in places like France, Spain, Portugal and Italy, all of which had prominent communist parties, some of which were on the verge of government entry. Bags of money went to conservative parties, politicians were bribed and journalists bought. In fact, during that time period I would dare to say there was hardly an election that the United States did not somehow get involved in.

Does it still go on? The U.S. has been seeking regime change in Syria since 2004 and is currently occupying part of the country. And of course, Russia is on the receiving end of a delegitimization process through a controlled western media that is seeking to get rid of Putin by exploiting a CIA and western intelligence funded opposition. China has no real opposition or open elections, nor can its regime plausibly be changed, but it is constantly being challenged by depicting it and its behavior in the most negative fashion possible.

Joe Biden really should read up on the history of American political and military interventions, regime changes and electoral interference worldwide. He just might learn something. The most important point might, however, elude him. All of the intervention and all of the deaths have turned out badly both for the U.S. and for the people and countries being targeted. Biden has taken a bold step to withdraw U.S. forces from Afghanistan, though it now appears that that decision might be in part reversed. Much better to complete the process and also do the same thing in places like Iraq, Somalia and Syria. The whole world will be a better place for it.

July 1, 2021 Posted by | Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Militarism, Progressive Hypocrite | , , , , | 2 Comments

China and the Supply Chain: A Comment on the June 2021 White House Review

By James K. Galbraith – Institute for New Economic Thinking – June 23, 2021

In January 2013, the Obama White House released a White Paper on “National Strategy for Global Supply Chain Security: Implementation Update.” It was a short document, only 22 pages, almost wholly focused on the security of transport – of ships, air freight, the mails – against terrorism and other threats. What traveled through the supply chain, and from where, does not appear to have been a major concern.

In June 2021, the Biden White House published a “100-day review” entitled “Building Resilient Supply Chains, Revitalizing American Manufacturing and Fostering Broad-based Growth.” It is focused on a very different concept of what the “supply chain” is; the term now encompasses the entire spectrum of upstream production. The Biden review takes these up in four areas: semiconductors, high-capacity batteries, critical minerals, and pharmaceuticals.

One might ask, why these four areas and not others? There is no clear answer, and it may be that choice was mainly bureaucratic. The review was compiled from separate reports by four cabinet departments: Commerce, Energy, Defense, and Health and Human Services. Had the Department of Agriculture been asked, or the Department of Transportation, one might have gotten different choices. Petroleum comes to mind. Or natural rubber – the linchpin of World War II in the Pacific.

If there is an Ariadne’s thread to these four areas, it is the trading and competitive relationship with China. The reports do not focus solely on China and give what is largely a fair-minded and wide-ranging assessment of vulnerabilities in each sector. For the reader not previously immersed in the structures of semiconductor production or the technology of electrical storage, this document, at 250 pages, is a mine of information. But China lurks in each section, sometimes looming large, in other places only in the background.

The global semiconductor industry is here described in fascinating detail. It is a paragon of extreme specialization, relentless technological improvement, economies of scale, and global division of labor. US firms dominate in semiconductor design and integrated production; Japan produces the wafers; Taiwan and (to a much smaller degree) South Korea do high-end fabrication in “contract foundries,” while China handles a substantial share of low-end chips and of “packaging” – a term that covers the placing of chips into circuit boards including, of course, the assembly of smartphones. American-based production is only 12 percent of the world’s capacity, roughly a third of what it was in the 1990s.

To characterize broadly, the semiconductor supply chain is a network of unique nodes, in which a given firm has one upstream supplier for many major components and perhaps just one downstream customer, creating a web of bilateral monopolies operating in extreme interdependence. Thus a breakdown anywhere along the line can disrupt the entire system. This is, by the way, very much the classic problem of Soviet-style industrial structure, designed to maximize efficiency at each node (in the Soviet case, a matter of scale), but fragile as events in the early 1990s showed.

The review calls attention to several specific events that have led to recent and ongoing shortages in semiconductor supply. These include a fire in March at a facility in Japan and the freeze in February in Texas which took a trio of Austin facilities off-line for up to a month. But the most important was not itself a natural event but rather the reaction to one. As Covid-19 took hold, key figures in the industry shifted capacity to household applications. They failed to anticipate how quickly demand for vehicles would recover as the pandemic waned.

The problem is that chip production takes a lot of time; it is characterized to an extreme degree by what economists of the Austrian school call “roundaboutness.” The multiple steps (etching, doping, and so forth) are repeated “hundreds of times”; producing a single chip “can take up to 26 weeks.” So once locked into a program, the industry has the margin of maneuver, roughly, of the Ever Given in the Suez Canal. Meanwhile, the automakers who have designed a hundred or more distinct chips into their new cars must sit and wait. This accounts, no doubt, in part for the surging prices of used vehicles and the current scarcity of rental cars.

What then is the “China threat” to the semiconductor supply chain? The most important one is stated very plainly. China is the world’s largest semiconductor market, both for home use and for incorporation into products sold elsewhere. The single biggest risk from China is not some nefarious disruption of components or materials. It is rather, a possible fall in the final demand. The review is clear and unambiguous on this point:

US semiconductor companies… thus have the potential to be significantly impacted by trade restrictions between the United States and China, with major portions of their revenue at risk of long-term disruption. Based on the Chinese government’s ambitions in regard to the semiconductor industry, these revenue sources may be at risk regardless, but given that their ability to reinvest is immediately dependent on sales to China, their long-term viability is immediately affected by actions that decrease sales. (p. 57.)

The review goes on to note that since much of the industry operates on the two banks of the Taiwan Strait, “Even a minor conflict or embargo could have immediate major disruptions to the United States and long-term implications for US supply chain resilience” (p. 57). In a White House document, at this moment of heated China-bashing, this is a welcome realism.

With large-capacity batteries, the principal supply-chain issue is not so much a science-driven matter of design and engineering as it is access to key materials, most notably nickel, graphite, cobalt, and lithium. With these materials, it appears reserves are not particularly scarce, although in the case of cobalt they are concentrated in the Democratic Republic of Congo, where mining conditions are tactfully described as being “outside of international practice.” The review notes that China’s advantage in materials supply results, mainly, from having invested in finding reserves on its own territory.

But, it turns out, industrial dominance in this area does not rest on the supply side. It lies rather in the development of the industry itself, driven by demand for electrical storage, which is overwhelmingly in the automotive sector. China is the low-cost producer because it is the world’s largest user, consuming 40 percent of global large-capacity battery output. Europe accounts for another 40 percent, and the United States for just 13 percent. Consider this: there are 425,000 electrically-powered buses in the world today. Of these, 300 are in the United States; 421,000 are in China. Perhaps oddly for a report on the supply chain, but not unreasonably under the circumstances, the recommendations in this section are relentless: the United States should work to bolster demand.

In the report on critical materials, prepared by the Pentagon, thirty-eight minerals are listed for which US direct import dependence is above 75 percent. Of these, China is a top supplier in eighteen cases. And why is that? Largely, as the report states, because the growth in China’s own demand for these materials has made it profitable for China to invest in the supply chain, hence to become the high-volume, low-cost producer, to whom the world turns.

The Defense Department is naturally concerned with the possible consequences of conflict, and so with the possibility that access to materials might be lost, especially where there is only one source of supply. This is particularly true in the case of “rare earths” – a grab-bag of exotic minerals – where China had 85 percent of the global market as of 2014 – even though the entire Chinese workforce in the mining of rare earths consists of only 4,000 souls, with an additional 40,000 in smelting. Perhaps understandably, not even the Pentagon has a good answer to this problem, apart from conservation, recycling, stockpiling, and being prepared to divert from routine to essential uses in an emergency. The review laments the decline of mining expertise emerging from US university systems, where educational programs have folded as mines have disappeared. But it is hard to see why students would pursue degrees, or universities provide them, in fields for which jobs no longer exist.

With pharmaceuticals, the problem is not of scarcity but of basic economics. The supply chain moved to India because costs are low as befits the low-price, low-margin, high-volume business of generic drug manufacture. Supply chain resilience would thus be a matter of maintaining a “virtual” stockpile, consisting of manufacturing equipment and precursor chemicals, to be held in reserve in case of emergencies. It is important to note that to be useful, the reserve capacity would have to be kept idle – otherwise it adds no layer of safety in the event of a disruption. The review is realistic about the prospects for this: the scale and complexity of the sector, together with the unpredictability of future biological threats, makes it impractical to maintain large reserves in all areas. In an open global market economy, drugs will be bought from where they are cheapest to produce.

In each area, the Review is critical of Chinese practices, which are said to consist of large-scale, “top-down,” “market-distorting,” public investments, subsidies to Chinese companies, state-sponsored industrial rationalization, and in the case of electric vehicles, large subsidies to consumers to spur demand. Thus we read: “The Chinese Government has focused on capturing discrete strategic and critical material markets as a matter of state policy.” (p. 174). Examples given are that in 2002 China “prohibited foreign investors from establishing rare earth mining enterprises in China” and in 2014 consolidated the business in the hands of a “handful of national champions.” Also, back in 1985, China had established a VAT rebate for rare-earth exports, “which contributed to the erosion and the elimination of US production in the global market.

In this and other instances throughout the Review, the deplorable practices of state planning and national development strategies undertaken by China are, within a few pages, pretty much exactly what the authors recommend for the United States. (The DoD recommendations on critical materials are an exception here, addressing among other things recycling, human rights issues, and environmental concerns, even though these are perhaps somewhat tangential to supply-chain issues per se.) Thus on lithium-ion batteries, we read: “As part of the American Jobs Plan, President Joe Biden has called for transformative investments to spur this demand, including $100 billion in incentives to encourage US consumers to transition to EVs” (p. 134). Similarly on semiconductors: “Consistent with the American Jobs Plan proposals, federal incentives to build or expand semiconductor facilities are necessary to counter the significant subsidies provided by foreign allies and competitors.” (p. 76). How an “incentive” differs from the Chinese practice of “subsidies” is not clearly explained. Nor does the review admit that export rebates on VAT are standard practice everywhere.

Still, from a broad reading and fair appraisal of this genuinely excellent document, two major conclusions may be drawn. The first is that the Chinese advantage – which is by no means absolute in all areas – stems from a pragmatic program of economic development, including infrastructure and human resources, in a vast country able to take advantage of a scale of production and internal market impossible anywhere else. This leads to lower costs across a wide range of industrial and engineering capacities, bolstered by being embedded (as the Review does not point out) in a system oriented toward social stability and steady growth rather than short-term profitability and financial contracts. The Chinese edge – similar to India’s in pharmaceuticals but much more broadly based – is the product of the success of China’s development approach, especially in the post-Mao era, but with roots that go back to the 1949 revolution, to the creation of the People’s Republic and to the restoration of a unitary Chinese state with full control over the nation’s land and resources. This is a fact of life and not an artifact of ruses or dirty dealing.

The second key conclusion is that in critical sectors, in the world we inhabit and from which we cannot escape, US-China interdependence is indefeasible. Rare earths are a minor example, barring new discoveries in other places. Semiconductors are a major one: without the Chinese market, the American firms that presently dominate the high-end design processes would collapse. Bringing manufacturing back to the US, we learn, would come primarily at the expense of allies, including Japan and South Korea as well as, especially, Taiwan. It is hard to see why even the most aggressive China hawk would favor stripping Taiwan of its chip foundries – but even doing that would hardly lessen the dependence of the semiconductor ecosystem on the Chinese market.

So we come to a truly remarkable third conclusion, no less powerful for having been left unstated. It builds on the fact that the integration of the global economy cannot be undone. The division of labor – hence productivity, living standards, and the advance of technologies – is limited by the extent of the market, as Adam Smith wrote in The Wealth of Nations back in 1776. China is a now-developed country with about twenty percent of the human population; its advantages are stability and scale, almost exactly as was true in the 18th century. These advantages cannot now be taken away without destroying the world as it is.

To be sure, the Chinese still, in many important advanced areas, draw from and depend on the United States. Certainly, the US can slow the inroads of Chinese firms in some cases, and certainly the US can foster, as this report recommends, its own advantages in new sectors by maintaining and expanding its research and development base. Certainly, there are many things to be done in the United States to meet urgent environmental, public health, and critical social goals.

But the US position, as an economy with only one-fourth the population, equally now depends on the Chinese market, and on downstream Chinese firms supplying applications to the world. While precautions against natural disasters and pandemics can be taken – up to a point – the central unstated message of this 100-day Review is that the greatest risk to the supply chain, in each of the four areas, is disruption of normal trade relations with China. In short, as an objective economic matter, we learn here, the United States has an overwhelming interest in peace.

June 27, 2021 Posted by | Economics, Militarism, Timeless or most popular | , | Leave a comment

Chinese drillers announce two MASSIVE oil & gas discoveries in Northwest China

RT | June 20, 2021

China has discovered a pair of new deposits containing roughly two billion tons of shale oil and gas, according to the state-controlled energy giant China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC).

One of the wells was discovered in the Fuman oilfield – a major region for crude oil production in the Tarim Basin, in northwest China’s Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region. It reportedly contains a billion tons of super-deep oil and gas.

With a drilling depth of nearly 27,900 feet (8,500 meters) and a test oil column reaching 1,640 feet (550 meters), the reservoir set new records for the basin’s deepest oil production and highest oil column, and marks the largest discovery of oil in the area in a decade. It is expected to produce four million tons of oil and 49.4 billion cubic feet (1.4 billion cubic meters) of natural gas annually before 2025.

The oilfield is one of the world’s most difficult areas to drill, as most of the reserves are around 26,000 feet (8,000 meters) below the surface of the Earth. After it was discovered in 2015, annual output in the area grew from some 30,000 tons to 1.52 million tons in 2020, with an estimated production of about two million tons since the beginning of 2021.

Another deposit, in the Ordos Basin, also in the northwest, reportedly contains an estimated billion tons of shale oil, according to CNPC making it the biggest shale oil field in the country.

Discovered by Changqing Oilfield Co, a CNPC subsidiary, it is one of several major discoveries in the past three years. Two years ago, the firm discovered 359 million tons of shale oil in the Qingcheng region, in the northwestern Gansu Province.

Changqing has managed to significantly extend the range of its exploration over the past few years and its latest billion-ton discovery will be an important milestone in China’s oil-gas exploration history.

June 20, 2021 Posted by | Economics | | 2 Comments

The United States Is a Serial Nuclear Aggressor Whose Moral Bankruptcy Threatens World Peace

Strategic Culture Foundation | May 28, 2021

More than 60 years ago, American military chiefs were closer than previously known to dropping atomic bombs on China over a relatively minor crisis with the renegade territory of Taiwan. The new revelations came from veteran whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg who worked as a nuclear weapons strategist at the Rand Corporation and at the Pentagon during the 1950s and 60s.

Ellsberg was the source of the famous Pentagon Papers which he leaked 50 years ago exposing the official U.S. lies about its criminal involvement in the Vietnam War during the 1960s and 70s.

Now at the age of 90, Daniel Ellsberg has dropped another media bombshell – that the Pentagon was ready to attack China and its major cities with nuclear weapons in 1958. The details were published by the New York Times. But it is perturbing that the shocking revelations barely caused a ripple in the U.S. media. There were no editorials condemning the plan which indicates a complacency among the U.S. media bordering on acquiescence towards such criminal action. This complacency is deeply alarming given the present dangers of war stemming from Washington’s provocations towards China and Russia.

It seems incredible that such a monstrous crime in 1958 was being considered fresh from the memory of the horror perpetrated at Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the Japanese cities razed by two U.S. atomic bombs in August 1945 causing the deaths of at least 200,000 mainly civilians. If the Americans had gone ahead with the plan some 13 years later to attack China the death toll would have been in the millions.

Ellsberg, who could face prosecution under the U.S. Espionage Act similar to contemporary whistleblowers Edward Snowden and Julian Assange, said he was motivated to make his latest revelations because of the imminent risk of war from escalating tensions between China and the United States over Taiwan and other issues. Six decades on, it is notable how the same tensions exist. This is because Washington continues to meddle in China’s internal sovereign affairs, making Taiwan a pawn in its imperialist game. It is the U.S. that is stoking the hostility by reneging on its One China policy which has up to now nominally recognized Beijing’s territorial claim to Taiwan.

In 1958, before the One China policy was adopted in 1979, the U.S. sided with Taiwan in China’s civil war between the Communists and Nationalists led by Chiang kai-shek whose forces fled to the island after their defeat on the mainland in 1949. Rather than accepting the outcome of the civil war, the U.S. continued to support Chiang and his Kuomintang regime. Taiwan became a renegade island territory which has existed in large part due to American military support. This is part of the “strategic ambiguity” adopted by Washington even though since 1979 the United States officially recognizes Beijing’s authority over Taiwan. “Strategic duplicity” would be a more accurate term.

Successive American administrations under Obama, Trump and now Biden have moved significantly to undermine the One China policy and to show increasing support for Taiwan’s would-be declaration of independence. If such a move were to take place, China has vowed to use military force to assert control over the territory. That would no doubt lead to war with the United States. Pentagon chiefs have already said in recent months that a war could happen within five years. And from the way relations are rapidly deteriorating between Washington and Beijing – the latest provocation due to Biden’s insinuation this week that the Covid-19 pandemic may have originated from a Chinese virology laboratory in Wuhan – it is not hard to envisage how tensions could erupt into a full-blown war.

Ellsberg’s concern is that the willingness by Washington to use nuclear weapons in 1958 against China is still extant today. That should be a concern for the whole world. Unlike in 1958, China is now a formidable nuclear power and there is no doubt it would retaliate leading to a nuclear conflagration. Nevertheless, there is a delusion among some American planners that they can win from a pre-emptive strike. The United States is alone among major nuclear powers in not explicitly renounced a first-strike policy.

What is also perplexing is the United States is the only county to have used nuclear weapons of mass destruction in war yet it continues to officially justify that blatant crime as a necessary means to end the Pacific War against Japan. The sense of entitlement and impunity is appalling.

Furthermore, the willingness in 1958 to use nuclear weapons against China was not the only time such an abominable plan was drawn up. There have been several occasions, including:

  • In 1949, Washington formulated Operation Dropshot which planned to drop 300 atomic weapons on 100 cities and towns across the Soviet Union. This was rationalized as a response in the event that the Soviet Union expanded its allegiance among Western European and Asian nations.
  • In 1950 and 1953, the administrations of Harry Truman and Ike Eisenhower warned of using nuclear weapons against China over the latter’s support for North Korea in the civil war against American-backed South Korea.
  • In 1961, the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff advocated a pre-emptive nuclear attack against the Soviet Union, but they were stood down by President John F Kennedy who abhorred the idea. Kennedy went on to implement a landmark arms control treaty with Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev which many researchers believe led to his assassination by the CIA in 1963.

The propensity by the United States for the use of nuclear weapons can be seen as a form of blackmail and state terrorism against the rest of the world. It has used such weapons without apology, it has explicitly threatened to use such weapons on several occasions, and it continues to tacitly threaten to use these weapons at any time of its choosing. That, in short, is state terrorism.

It no doubt gives the American rulers some pause for thought that China or Russia could retaliate with devastating force. But what is reprehensible and uniquely criminal is the reckless way in which American rulers continue to push the dynamics for war despite their sanctimonious lecturing about upholding “the rules-based international order”.

This week, the Biden administration announced it was not rejoining the Open Skies Treaty which the previous Trump administration walked away from. That is at least the third arms-control treaty that the U.S. has unilaterally ditched – the ABM, the INF and now the OST. Again, the United States is gravely undermining global security based on provocative and baseless claims against Russia and China.

When Biden meets President Putin next month in Geneva, the former is said by U.S. media to be going to raise several concerns with the Russian leader. Such conceited reporting implies a grossly misplaced sense of moral authority. The reality is, however, that Putin will have a lot more genuine and urgent concerns to raise about the American side and its assault on global security.

The fact is the United States is a serial nuclear aggressor whose veneer of supposed virtue is a thin and increasingly transparent disguise for moral bankruptcy. It is the preeminent threat to world peace.

May 29, 2021 Posted by | Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , | 1 Comment

Beijing, the Five Eyes or Something Else? Who’s to Blame for the COVID Pandemic?

By Matthew Ehret | Strategic Culture Foundation | May 19, 2021

The oligarchy running the Trans Atlantic System certainly loves the centralized control found in the Chinese system, and they adore the behaviorist social credit stuff, but that is where the admiration ends, Matt Ehret writes.

Ever since the earliest days of the Coronavirus pandemic, evidence began to emerge that the virus was not a naturally occurring evolutionary phenomenon as asserted by the WHO, Nature, and editors at the Lancet, but had other origins.

Among the earliest of those who found themselves supporting this theory were the Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesman Lijian Zhou who made international waves by sharing two articles by Larry Romanov on the possibility of “gene targeting” of the virus which was having a disproportionately bad effect on Iranians, Italians and various Asian genotypes. Zhou was soon joined by bioweapons experts like Francis Boyle, prominent virologists Luc Montagnier and Judy Mikovits, followed by a growing array of scholars, scientists and academics from around the world who all assessed that the virus’ apparent gene sequencing implied human handiwork. While all agreed that COVID appeared to have originated from a lab, it was still unclear whether that lab was Chinese or controlled by the USA.

Another obvious question arose with this lab theory: Was it an accidental leak or was it consciously deployed?

Since pandemic war game operations had become a normalized part of western geopolitical life from the early days of Dark Winter in 2000 to the Rockefeller Foundation’s 2011 Lock Step to the World Economic Forum’s Event 201 (and dozens more in between), the likelihood of conscious deployment was a very serious possibility.

Who had the motive, means and modus operandi to carry out such a global operation?

The Wuhan Theory Begins

By February 2020, the Wuhan lab leak hypothesis began to make headlines fed by evidence that Dr. Anthony Fauci had exported certain gain of function coronavirus experiments from U.S. bioweapons laboratories to Wuhan’s Institute of Virology – one of two BSL-4 labs in China equipped to conduct this sort of research in China.

When Sir Richard Dearlove (former head of MI6) became a loud proponent of the Wuhan lab leak hypothesis in June 2020, something seemed amiss. Dearlove certainly knew a thing or two about bioweapons. He knew very well of the Pentagon’s vast array of internationally extended bioweapons labs peppered across the world, and he certainly understood the art of misdirection being a byzantine shadow creature who operated at the highest echelons of British intelligence. Dearlove was after all in charge of the “yellowcake” dodgy dossier that launched an Iraq war, he knew of the fallacious reports of nerve gases used by the governments of Libya and Syria sponsored by MI6, had even overseen major components of Russiagate that drove a color revolutionary process in the USA. Dearlove also knew a thing or two about the Porton Down labs that manufactured Novichok used in the Skripal Affair.

While Dearlove’s cheerleading of the Wuhan lab theory raised alarm bells, as time passed, no smoking gun evidence surfaced that one could fully “take to court”. In this respect, Dearlove’s operation had the upper hand since receipts from Fauci’s NIH to the Wuhan Lab did make headlines. How convenient.

Before going into the next phase of the story, it is important to recall that the absence of empirical evidence is not by itself a proof of one party’s innocence, just as the existence of a piece of empirical evidence is not a proof of another party’s guilt. This was a sad discovery made far too late by Shakespeare’s Othello after Iago’s planted “evidence” of a handkerchief resulted in the foolish warrior to murder his loving wife.

Wuhan Lab Origins Go Viral Again

In recent weeks, the Wuhan lab leak hypothesis has once again become all the rage.

Rand Paul’s May 10 showdown with Fauci over this the latter’s funding of the Wuhan Institute of Virology added fuel to the fire. Sky News’ May 7 reporting of public Chinese policy papers discussing covid-based bioweapons have gone viral. On March 26, former Center of Disease Control head Robert Redfield asserted support for the Wuhan lab leak theory. While the scanned receipts of the funds transfer from the NIH to Wuhan via Eco Health Alliance ($600 thousand went to Wuhan) for coronavirus research, had been available since last February, one must wonder why it is now over a year later that this fact is being spread across the perception landscape on all levels.

Both mainstream and alternative media across the western world representing both the left and right have jumped on board the bandwagon blaming China for leaking the virus whether by accident or intent (though obviously, intent is the conclusion which anyone is being expected to draw. But again, I must ask: In a world of misdirection, psychological warfare and perception management, do the clues that we are being given force us to conclude that the Chinese government is behind the global shutdown?

Chinese Leaders Blame the CIA

Zeng Guang, a chief epidemiologist at China’s Center of Disease Control recently joined the conspiracy club on February 9, 2021 in an interview with Chinese media. While denying that the Chinese Wuhan lab is the source of the virus as so many in the west have claimed, Guang asserted that SarsCov2’s origins in a laboratory should not be discounted. Pointing to the 200 globally extended U.S. bioweapons labs littering the earth (and citing the USA’s proven track record of deploying bioweapons as part of its asymmetrical war arsenal since WWII), Guang asked:

“Why are there so many laboratories in the United States when biology labs are all over the world? What is the purpose? On many things, the United States requires others to be open and transparent, only to find that it is the United States itself that is often the most opaque. Whether or not the United States has any special fame on the issue of the new crown virus this time, it should have the courage to be open and transparent. The United States should take responsibility for proving itself to the world, rather than being caught up in hegemonic thinking, hiding itself from the virus and dumping others.”

Guang was himself joined by Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hua Chunying who had also pointed to the Pentagon’s globally extended array of bioweapons laboratories saying:

“I’d like to stress that if the United States truly respects facts, it should open the biological lab at Fort Detrick, give more transparency to issues like its 200-plus overseas bio-labs, invite WHO experts to conduct origin-tracing in the United States, and respond to the concerns from the international community with real actions.”

Those who tend to avoid looking at the history and scope of Pentagon controlled bioweapon warfare tend to ignore the content of such remarks cited by those Chinese officials above for a multitude of reasons. For one: it is easy to believe that Fauci and Gates are corrupt, and this theory not only implicates both men but also ties them to a Chinese government which most westerners have come to fear and hate as a bastion of global debt-trappery, genocide, technocracy and imperialism.

After conducting a short review of some of the fundamental facts of recent world history alongside certain geopolitical realities of our present world order referenced by the head of the Chinese CDC, I believe that China’s Wuhan Lab is being set up. Here’s why…

Fact #1) Depopulation Then and Now

While many people may wish to avoid looking at this fact, depopulation is a driving factor behind international unipolar policy today as it had been during the days of WW2 when Rockefeller Foundation, Macy Foundation, City of London and Wall Street interests gave their backing to both the rise of fascism as an economic miracle solution for the economic woes of the great depression and eugenics (the science of population control) as the governing religion of a new scientific priesthood.

Today, this agenda masquerades behind a new transhumanist movement, shaped by a words like “Fourth Industrial Revolution”, “decarbonized economies”, and “Great Resets”. The primary targets of this agenda remain: 1) the Institution of the sovereign nation state itself as it was the target a century ago when the Bank of England arranged the formation of the 1919 League of Nations, and 2) the “overpopulated zones” of the world with a focus on China, India, South America and Africa.

For anyone who would find themselves instinctively inclined to brush aside such claims as “conspiracy theorizing”, I would encourage a brief review of Sir Henry Kissinger’s infamous NSSM-200 report: Implications of Worldwide Population Growth for U.S. Security and Overseas Interests published in 1974. This declassified report went far to transform U.S. foreign policy from a pro-development philosophy to a new paradigm of population control. Kissinger warned that “if future numbers are to be kept within reasonable bounds, it is urgent that measures to reduce fertility be started and made effective in the 1970s and 1980s…. (Financial) assistance will be given to other countries, considering such factors as population growth… Food and agricultural assistance is vital for any population sensitive development strategy… Allocation of scarce resources should take account of what steps a country is taking in population control… There is an alternative view that mandatory programs may be needed….”

In Kissinger’s twisted logic, U.S. Foreign Policy doctrine had too often foolishly sought to end hunger by providing the means of industrial and scientific development to poor nations.

A true Malthusian through and through, Kissinger believed that aiding the poor to stand on their own feet would result in global disequilibrium as the new middle classes would consume more, and use the strategic resources found under their own soil, which would set the world system into greater disequilibrium and accelerated entropy.

This was deemed unacceptable to the mind of Kissinger and any misanthropic follower of Malthus who shared his views of humanity and government.

Kissinger’s Master-Slave Global Society

At the time of Kissinger’s ascent to power as Secretary of State under Nixon, a new grand strategy was unleashed designed to create a new “master-slave” dependency between the developed and undeveloped sectors of the world… with a special emphasis on the 13 nations targeted by NSSM 200 plus China.

China itself was only permitted to acquire western tech needed to start climbing out of abject poverty on the condition that they obeyed the Rockefeller-World Bank demands that one child policy programs were imposed to curb population growth.

Kissinger began organizing for this new set of relations in society around “Have”, post-industrial consumers and a massive “Have-Not” class of poor laborers with access to industry, but remaining stagnant, cheap and without the means of purchasing the goods they produced. The other darker skinned parts of the world would be even more worse off, having neither the means of production, nor consumption while remaining in constant states of famine, war and backwardness. These dark age zones would be largely made up of Sub Saharan Africa and would find their resource-rich lands exploited by the corporate middle men and financiers trying to run the world order above the “obsolete order” of nation states.

Kissinger’s model of a world order was absolutely static with no room for population growth or technological progress which would have any connection to increasing the powers of production. Mao and the Gang of Four which ran the cultural revolution appeared to be highly compatible with Kissinger’s agenda. But when Mao died and the Gang of Four were rightfully imprisoned, a new long-term strategy known as the Four Modernizations shaped by Zhou Enlai and carried out by Deng Xiaoping was launched. This program was far more foresighted than Kissinger realized.

Fact #2) China is currently a leading force of pro-population growth.

While the west has been accelerating into a decaying path on every measurable level, China is quickly moving in an opposing trajectory via extending long term investments and advanced tech development into its own society as well as to its neighbors through such comprehensive projects as the Belt and Road Initiative.

While its own population has not healed from the disastrous 1979 one child policy and is far from achieving the 2.1 children per couple needed for replacement fertility, it did lift the one child limit to two in 2015 and leading Bank of China economists have called for a total elimination of all limits immediately. Meanwhile, the top-down national orientation of China towards increasing the free energy needed to support and grow the economy is unlike anything we have seen in the closed-system western world for many decades.

A vital fact often forgotten is that together China and India were instrumental in sabotaging the December 2009 COP-14 program in Copenhagen which had promised to establish legally binding emission target cuts to guide the de-carbonization (and de-industrialization) of much of society.

The London Guardian had reported that “Copenhagen was a disaster. That much is agreed. But the truth about what actually happened is in danger of being lost amid the spin and inevitable mutual recriminations. The truth is this: China wrecked the talks, intentionally humiliated Barack Obama, and insisted on an awful “deal” so western leaders would walk away carrying the blame.”

Apparently China and India, along with African governments like Sudan (which had not yet been carved up on the careful watch of Rhodes’ Susan Rice) did not wish to sacrifice their industry and national sovereignty on the altar of climate change models and technocrats that had only weeks earlier been publicly exposed as frauds by East Anglia University researchers during the embarrassing Climategate scandal.

While China and India should be celebrated for having sabotaged this effort 11 years ago, very few people have been able to hold this drama in their memory, and fewer still realize how this fight over sovereignty was in any way connected to China’s 2013 creation of the Belt and Road Initiative as the vital force behind the Multipolar Alliance.

Fact #3) Soros at Davos 2020: The two greatest threats to Open Society: 1) Donald Trump’s USA and 2) Xi Jinping’s China.

During his January 2020 Davos speech, Soros took aim at both Trump and Xi Jinping as the two greatest threats to his Open Society who had to be stopped at all costs. In September 2019 (just as Event 201 was happening) Soros wrote in the Wall Street Journal :

“As founder of the Open Society Foundations, my interest in defeating Xi Jinping’s China goes beyond U.S. national interests. As I explained in a speech in Davos earlier this year, I believe that the social-credit system Beijing is building, if allowed to expand, could sound the death knell of open societies not only in China but also around the globe.”

Before becoming mired into the “China virus” narrative, Donald Trump had worked exceptionally hard to emphasize good relations with China and even managed one of the most important trade deals that had successfully moved into phase one the week Soros spoke at Davos. This first phase involved China creating a market to purchase U.S. finished goods as part of the program to rebuild America’s lost manufacturing sector that had been hollowed out over 5 decades of “post industrialism”. Where Kissinger called NAFTA “the most creative step toward a new world order taken by any group of countries since the end of the Cold War” Trump went far to renegotiate the anti-nation state treaty giving nation states a role to play in shaping economic policy for the first time in over 25 years.

While talking tough on China until 2020, Trump also resisted the war hawks pushing a total military encirclement of China begun under Obama’s Asia Pivot which is threatening nuclear war (same thing is happening on Russia’s perimeter). He took the fuel out of the THAAD missile encirclement of China which has justified its expansion based on the “North Korean threat” for over a decade – always denying the truth that the real target were both Russia and China. Trump’s push to build friendly relations with Kim Jong Un had much greater ramifications at changing U.S. Pacific military policy than many realized, although that fact was certainly not missed by the Chinese intelligentsia.

While the Soros/CIA-driven color revolutionary operations have so far failed to divide up China in Hong Kong, Tibet and Xinjiang, they have been successful in the USA.

Fact #4) The Pentagon’s Global Bioweapons Complex Is a Fact

While China is the proud owner of a total of TWO bioweapons labs (both within its borders), a vast array of dozens of Pentagon-run bioweapons labs litter the international landscape. Exactly how many is hard to estimate as Alexei Mukhin (Director General of Russia’s Center for Political Information) stated in a May 2020 interview:

“According to the Russian Ministry of Defense, in the post-Soviet space, 65 American secret bio-laboratories operate: 15 – in Ukraine, 12 – in Armenia, 15 – in Georgia, 4 – in Kazakhstan. In the United States, such activity is prohibited. Accordingly, the Pentagon, in its own laws, is engaged in illegal activities (in spirit, not in letter). The goal is the creation of biological weapons directed against the peoples who inhabited the territory of the USSR. Fortunately, biological material is “at hand.”

In 2018, investigative journalist Dilya Gaytandzhieva documented the Pentagon’s multibillion dollar budget that sustains bioweapons labs in 25 nations (and 11 within the USA itself) which grew exponentially since the December 2001 bioweaponized anthrax attack killed five Americans and justified a hyperbolic increase of bioweapon warfare to rise from $5 billion when Cheney’s Bioshield Act was passed in 2004 to over $50 billion today.

Additionally, an October 2000 policy document co-authored by William Kristol, John Bolton, Richard Perle, Dick Cheney, Paul Wolfowitz, Elliot Abrams, and Donald Rumsfeld titled Rebuilding America’s Defenses (RAD) explicitly stated that in the new American Century, “combat will likely take place in new dimensions: In space, cyber-space and perhaps the world of microbes… advanced forms of biological warfare that can “target” specific genotypes may transform biological warfare from the realm of terror to a politically useful tool”.

Fact #5) International Pandemic War Game Scenarios Laid the groundwork for the international response to Covid. Not China

The driving force behind such bioweapon war game exercises such as the June 2000 Operation Dark Winter, the May 2010 Rockefeller Foundation report Operation Lock step, and the World Economic Forum/Gates Foundation/CIA Event 201 pandemic exercises indicate to me that China is not the causal nexus.

All in all, I think these facts have persuaded me that China is being set up and is in fact a primary target for destruction.

How China would find itself the beneficiary of such an irresponsible unleashing of a novel virus that hammered its own economy, accelerated the blow out of the world financial bubble economy and led to a shut down of international stability is absurd to the extreme… especially considering the fact that everything China has done for the past decades has indicated a consistent desire to create stability, long term development and win-win cooperation with the international community. Nothing similar has been seen among members of the Five Eyes or their Trans Atlantic network of over bloated imperialists.

The oligarchy running the Trans Atlantic System certainly loves the centralized control found in the Chinese system, and they adore the behaviorist social credit stuff, but that is where the admiration ends. The Kissinger, Gates, Carney or Schwab- types hate and fear everything China has actually done for development, population growth, national banking, long term credit generation, building full spectrum industrial economies and defending sovereignty along with Russia whom they are tightly bonded with in the Eurasian Multipolar alliance.

May 20, 2021 Posted by | Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity, Timeless or most popular | , , , , | 2 Comments

Coronavirus: Bioterror And The US Military Laboratory In Kazakhstan – Investigation

By Yan Ostroumov | Rusvesna | March 17, 2021

China for the first time officially announced suspicions of US involvement in the spread of the coronavirus COVID-19 in the republic. Beijing referred to information about the appearance of the first infected in the United States long before the official date and, possibly, earlier detection of infection in Hubei.

The reports of the “American trail” in a pandemic seem insane, but this version begins to show solid evidence.

“Recently, a Kazakhstani resource Yvision reported that “a source among the staff of the Central Reference Laboratory (CRL) in Almaty confirmed that the deadly coronavirus was developed in this institution.”

This laboratory was created with the financial support of the US Army and is still controlled by representatives of Washington.

Preparation for biological warfare in the CIS

After the end of the Cold War, the US Department of Defense in the post-Soviet countries created several biological reference laboratories, of a high (third) degree of protection, designed to work with especially dangerous viruses and bacteria. These facilities operate in Kharkov, Tbilisi and Almaty.

“Their official goal is the fight against the spread of dangerous infections, the real one is to prepare for a possible biological war in the territory of the former USSR.”

Scientific research at the facilities is funded and supervised by the US Department of Defense, and is often carried out with the participation of researchers from the Institute of Military Medicine. Walter Reed US Armed Forces (Maryland) coming to the region.

For example, a detachment of military biologists worked under the command of Lieutenant Colonel Jamie Blow, who studied African swine fever, for a long time in the TsRL in Tbilisi. Shortly after the start of the work of this team, in 2013, an outbreak of this disease was recorded in the southern regions of Russia.

However, due to legal restrictions, CRLs are not objects of increased secrecy. Staff publishes articles and defends dissertations, which allows you to track some of their work on open sources.

Publications testify

The Viruses magazine (Viruses, 2019, 11, 356, doi: 10.3390 / v11040356) published in April 2019 the work of a group of American and Kazakh scientists about a new strain of coronavirus, the reservoirs of which are local bats. The work was carried out in the framework of the KZ-33 project of the US Department of Defense Threat Reduction Agency on the Almaty Central Defense League (Tropical Medicine and Infection Disease, 2019, 4, 136, doi: 10.3390 / tropicalmed4040136).

The project was led by Professor Gavin James Smith of Duke University (USA), closely associated with the National Institute of Health and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention of the US Department of Health.

The source of the Kazakh publication reported that the biosamples containing coronavirus delivered to the CRL in the winter of 2020

“at the molecular level, they completely coincide with the strain, the study of which was started in the laboratory about two years ago and which, according to his observations, should not all this time was to leave the TsRL.

It was a joint development led by scientists from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as part of the final stage of training a large group of Kazakh epidemiologists. ”

According to the publication (Viruses, 2019, p.2), the mentioned American studies of coronavirus were carried out in April – May 2017, that is, strictly on time, called the source. Moreover, both the species studied in 2017 and COVID-19 belong to coronaviruses transmitted by bats.

Thus, the “anonymous stuffing” is increasingly beginning to resemble the message of a person who well knows the nature of working with coronavirus in recent years.

The coincidences are sufficient for a serious verification of the kinship of these diseases by biologists, and we will move further – in the wake of those who conducted this study.

Following the bat

A careful study of the materials of the American CRL in Kazakhstan raises many questions. The KZ-33 project is entitled “Middle East Respiratory Coronavirus Syndrome”, and it is completely unclear why it should be studied on bats in Central Asia.

Even stranger is the ability of the aforementioned Professor Gavin Smith to find bats carrying the coronavirus literally anywhere. In 2017, he published a study (Transboundary Emerg Dis, Dec; 64 (6): 1790–1800. Doi: 10.1111 / tbed.12568) on coronavirus bats in Singapore. Having arrived in Kazakhstan, he also found the same object of study, although the republic was not famous for such a disease before. You might think that his personal mouse flock with his own coronavirus flies behind him.

It is curious that the study involved the resources of the Research Institute for Biological Safety is located in the Kordai district of the Zhambyl region of Kazakhstan. In the same area lives a large community of Chinese-speaking Dungans, who are traditionally engaged in shuttle trade with the PRC, including smuggling.

“There is a suspicion that in Kazakhstan, bats were artificially infected with coronavirus, strains of which were obtained in the Middle East, in the natural distribution area of ​​the disease.”

A genetically modified sample, later called COVID-19, could cross the border by accident or as a result of intentional manipulations.

The recent mass pogrom in the Dungan villages of the Kordai region can also be considered as an attempt to “clean up” witnesses of the work of American military biologists in the region in 2017-2019, their negligence or intentional actions to import COVID-19 to China.

Nobody seems to have cleaned up Professor Smith, but the Duke Institute, of which he is still an employee, seemed to have forgotten about its existence.

The coronavirus pandemic on the site of the scientific center is commented on by many researchers, but not by Gavin Smith, who has studied the spread of a very similar disease in East and Central Asia for at least four years.

Why such secrecy? Perhaps, in order not to remind once again about explorations in Almaty.

Basis for suspicion

Bioterrorism is a serious charge. But the facts gathered suggest a high probability of the involvement of a group of American and Kazakh biologists in the outbreak of coronavirus in China.

“We urge the Kazakh authorities to create a commission with the participation of representatives of WHO, as well as microbiologists from the PRC and CIS countries, with the aim of investigating the work of American specialists in the medical center and the Zhambyl region.”

We also urge international organizations, including UN agencies, to request information from the US Department of Defense about the nature of biological research in Kazakhstan funded by this agency.

May 17, 2021 Posted by | Deception, Timeless or most popular | , , , , | 3 Comments

The West pushes the Xinjiang issue hard, while ignoring the sustained slaughter of Palestinians

By Tom Fowdy | RT | May 14, 2021

Muslims allegedly being treated badly in China? Terrible human rights atrocities that need to be stopped. Muslims being bombed, murdered and driven from their homes in Gaza? Meh, they’re anti-Israel terrorists.

As Gaza burns and rages on, and Palestinians’ homes are turned into their graves, the West’s two-faced hypocrisy towards Muslims has never been clearer.

Unsurprisingly, despite the climbing death toll, condemnation from the West at Israel’s military action has been non-existent. The United States has blocked a UN Security Council Resolution over the matter, while its secretary of State, Antony Blinken, unironically tweeted a celebration of the Muslim Eid Festival.

In the absence of such condemnation, there was at the same time nonetheless a concerted and observable push by the mainstream media and US-affiliated organizations yesterday to put the Xinjiang autonomous region of China back on the agenda.

Several stories were tactically released, including a report from the National Endowment for Democracy-funded Uighur Human Rights Project accusing China of imprisoning Imams on trumped-up charges, while another from the US State and arms industry-funded Australian Strategic Policy institute accused them of demolishing mosques. At the same time, the US and its allies lobbed accusations at China in the United Nations and Blinken branded Xinjiang an “open-air prison”.

The West is pushing the Xinjiang issue hard and selectively, while ignoring long-term sustained atrocities regarding Palestine. They then wonder why Muslim countries largely offer support to Beijing on this matter and don’t take the West’s word for it. The answer is because, unwittingly, the Israel-Palestine conflict (like all the other Western-backed conflicts surrounding it), remains the primary wedge of geopolitical distrust between the Islamic world and the US and its allies.

These countries have no reason to take America’s human rights rhetoric seriously due to the devastation it has inflicted on the Middle East, and they subsequently share a common interest with China on the norm of defending “national sovereignty” from outside interference.

The West advocates to its own public an image of benevolence and sincere self-righteousness, masquerading and rebranding what was otherwise a longstanding history of imperialism, as a global force for good and justice. As what is deemed “morally correct” overlaps with what constitutes “political truth” in Western theory, few of its citizens question the utilization of human rights as an extension of politics or the idea such a premise could possibly be motivated by dishonesty, economic power or malign intent; to be honest about it is rendered a form of “blasphemy”. Thus, what is deemed “universal human rights” are not truly universal at all.

Countries in the Global South, especially in the Middle East, recognize this. In their experience, human rights have been persistently used as a pretext by Western countries to advance strategic and military goals in order to dominate them, as opposed to a truthful effort to improve people’s liberties and quality of life. And which are subsequently ignored when it suits the West, especially in matters of a much greater grievance to the Islamic world such as the Israel-Palestine conflict, which has been the keystone of anti-Western sentiment and ideology in the Middle East since the first Arab-Israeli war of 1948.

There have been many Western interventions in the region, mostly in a period between 1991-2012, justified on the grounds of human rights, such as Iraq, Libya and Syria. Concerning the latter, the West has accused Bashar Al-Assad of killing civilians in the decade-long civil war and called for his removal. Yet at the same time, the West has continually endorsed long-standing killings of civilians by Israel against Palestinians, and enabled that country’s expansionist policies in occupied territories, its unbridled aggression against many of its neighbours, and failed to resolve the seven-decade-long conflict.

In this case, if you are a Muslim country, why would you believe the US and its allies when they suddenly start crying atrocity, genocide and claiming they are standing up for the rights of a Muslim minority group in Xinjiang? Does this, for any Muslim country, have any real credibility?

The same countries who destroy Middle Eastern countries with war and bombings, and refuse to condemn Israel even modestly, now frame themselves as the guardians of Muslims? It’s no surprise that Muslim countries have not joined in the West’s chorus of condemnation, but have offered support to China’s policies. Even if they do not agree ideologically with China as an atheist, communist state, there’s one important point regarding Xinjiang that creates a space of common interest: defence of national sovereignty.

Irrespective of what they may think about events on the ground in Xinjiang, Muslim countries are largely post-colonial states which have suffered, and continue to suffer, from Western interference. Therefore, China’s norm of “non-interference in one’s internal affairs”, combined with its emphasis on defending sovereignty against Western intervention, is an attractive and logical solution to Muslim countries. Why would any such nation jump on the Xinjiang bandwagon and promote the idea that the West should be allowed to assault a country on the pretext of human rights? What might this mean for them?

Muslim countries support China on Xinjiang for a myriad of factors, have no good reason to trust the West, and recognize that the US, the UK and other such countries crying foul on this issue are doing so out of political motivations, as opposed to a sincere concern about the well-being of Islamic people.

As Gaza’s buildings are razed and its people slaughtered, the silence and indifference on this issue speaks louder than words concerning the West’s position on “human rights”. Let us end with this comparison: Palestine is an issue which Muslim countries are angry about, which is ignored by the Western elite; Xinjiang is an issue which the US-led alliance is angry about, that they desperately want Muslims to be furious about on the West’s behalf, but is rightly being ignored.

Tom Fowdy is a British writer and analyst of politics and international relations with a primary focus on East Asia.

May 15, 2021 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Progressive Hypocrite | , , , , , , | 1 Comment