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‘Blackout’: Sy Hersh Says US, Germany Coordinated NYT ‘False Cover Story’ for Nord Stream Bombing

By Fantine Gardinier – Sputnik – 22.03.2023

On September 26, 2022, a massive explosion ripped through the Nord Stream 1 and 2 pipelines on the Baltic seabed, severing a major natural gas connection and releasing colossal amounts of methane. The US had long objected to the line, which runs from Russia to Germany, urging Europe to buy more expensive US gas instead.

A new report by investigative journalist Seymour Hersh lays blame at the feet of US and German intelligence for a New York Times article claiming it was Ukrainian terrorists, not US Navy divers, who bombed the Nord Stream pipeline last September. Hersh said it was part of a coordinated “blackout” of his expose of Washington’s role in the attack.

“There is no evidence that any reporter assigned there has yet to ask the White House press secretary whether Biden had done what any serious leader would do: formally “task” the American intelligence community to conduct a deep investigation, with all of its assets, and find out just who had done the deed in the Baltic Sea,” Hersh wrote on Wednesday.

“According to a source within the intelligence community, the president has not done so, nor will he,” the journalist asserted. “Why not? Because he knows the answer.”

Hersh pointed to a curious meeting in Washington earlier this month between Biden and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in which both media and aides were almost totally absent.

“There have been no statements or written understandings made public since then by either government, but I was told by someone with access to diplomatic intelligence that there was a discussion of the pipeline exposé and, as a result, certain elements in the Central Intelligence Agency were asked to prepare a cover story in collaboration with German intelligence that would provide the American and German press with an alternative version for the destruction of Nord Stream 2,” Hersh wrote.

“In the words of the intelligence community, the agency was ‘to pulse the system’ in an effort to discount the claim that Biden had ordered the pipelines’ destruction,” he explained.

Indeed, The New York Times, which was one of two newspapers that ran the story, has admitted in the past to letting the CIA proofread certain stories before publishing them.

Along with the NYT, which published an article on March 7 claiming “a pro-Ukrainian group” might have been behind the pipeline explosion, the German weekly Der Zeit published a companion piece that same day claiming German investigative officials had found a luxury yacht chartered by a group of Ukrainians under false pretenses in the area of the explosions just a few weeks before they occurred.

Screengrab of video by Swedish media showing underwater drone footage of damaged Nord Stream pipeline. – Sputnik International, 1920, 17.03.2023

Both reports were largely absent on precise facts, heavy on anonymous sourcing, and admitted that, as the Times put it, “there was much they did not know.” Hersh’s February expose on the pipeline bombing was derided by critics for using anonymous sources, who claimed it undermined the integrity of Hersh’s audacious claims.

In fact, the Der Zeit story even noted the belief among some “in international security services” that the yacht story “was a false flag operation.”
“Indeed it was,” Hersh wrote in reply.

He quoted a source within the American intelligence community as telling him: “It was a total fabrication by American intelligence that was passed along to the Germans, and aimed at discrediting your story.”

To further make his point about just how little the journalists behind the two papers’ exposes really knew about their supposed bombshell reports, Hersh quoted a NYT podcast interview with story co-author Julian Barnes from a few days after its publication in which Barnes admits their primary method for establishing the facts of the article was “asking exactly the right questions” of US intelligence officials.

“All those states that we just went through, did Russia do it? Did the Ukraine state do it? And that was just hitting dead end after dead end. We weren’t finding officials who were telling us that there was credible evidence pointing at a government,” Barnes told the podcast. “So my colleagues Adam Entous, Adam Goldman, and I started asking a different question. Could this have been done by non-state actors?”

“Well, we started asking, who might these saboteurs be? Or if we couldn’t answer that, who might they be aligned with? Could they be pro-Russian saboteurs? Could they be other saboteurs? And the more we talk to officials who had access to intelligence, the more we saw this theory gaining traction.”

Hersh finished his article by faulting the NYT journalists for using their trade to protect Biden from the ugly ramifications of the sabotage order he personally signed.

Hersh has been a journalist for more than 50 years, winning a Pulitzer Prize in 1970 for his work in exposing the My Lai massacre of Vietnamese civilians by US troops and its subsequent coverup. He later exposed the US’ secret bombing campaign in Cambodia in the 1970s, US torture of detainees at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq, and the false attribution of a chemical weapons attack in Ghouta, Syria, to the Syrian government instead of to a group of US-backed Islamist rebels.

March 22, 2023 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, False Flag Terrorism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , | Leave a comment

Sy Hersh Slams ‘Stupid’ NYT Story on ‘Ukrainian’ Trace Behind Nord Stream Blasts

By Ilya Tsukanov – Sputnik – 18.03.2023

The veteran investigative journalist best known for blowing the lid off major US government lies, from Watergate and the My Lai Massacre to the Syrian gas attacks, penned a series of explosive Substack pieces last month revealing direct US complicity in the Nord Stream pipeline attacks.

Seymour Hersh says he has even more details corroborating the Biden administration’s involvement in the Nord Stream sabotage attacks, but cannot share them for fear of outing his sources.

“Biden authorized the blast. And the people involved know what he did. You know what orders came. I know a lot more about this than I want to say. But I have to protect the people who talk to me,” Hersh said in an interview with Austrian media.

“I know what I wrote is true. I know that it is right. I know the meetings I have described and the details of what happened in Norway. I’ve been involved with the intelligence community for 50 years,” the 85-year-old veteran journalist said, addressing the smear campaign being run against him by the legacy media in the wake of his bombshell Nord Stream-related publications.

Commenting on the story put out by The New York Times and German media earlier this month claiming that a “pro-Ukrainian group” without links to any state blew up the pipelines using a rented commercial yacht, Hersh called this version “stupid,” “unbelievable,” and a “crazy story with no sources.”

The veteran investigative journalist, one of the few in the contemporary US media landscape who still believes in the media’s role as the fourth estate, also took aim at the legacy media for ignoring his story in fealty to power. “If 90 percent of editors were fired, we’d be much better off, because they’re so afraid to write anything critical of Biden, thinking they’re going to put a Republican back in the White House,” he said.

Hersh said the attack on Nord Stream was a “signal” to the Western Europeans from Biden – that if they didn’t “want to go all the way” in the conflict with Russia, the US would cut them off. “He did it. And the price for that will be very high in Europe. Europe will not have the gas it needs and you will have to pay more for it,” he said.

Hersh, a sympathizer of the Democratic Party when it comes to social, environmental, and immigration issues, characterized Biden’s foreign policy as a disaster, with Washington’s badmouthing of China and Russia ultimately helping to “weld the two of them together.” As for the crisis in Ukraine, the journalist expects the NATO proxy conflict to fail. “Russia is going to win this war,” he said.

Seymour Hersh published his first piece on the Nord Stream attacks on February 8, detailing how US Navy divers laid the explosives that blew up the pipelines in June 2022 under the cover of NATO’s BALTOPS drills, with a Norwegian Navy P8 surveillance aircraft triggering them to explode three months later. Hersh subsequently wrote several follow-up stories with additional information and historical context.

US and German media rolled out their own stories this month, citing intelligence officials, claiming that a “pro-Ukrainian group” without any ties to Kiev blew up the pipelines independently using a rented yacht. Moscow dismissed these stories as “disinformation” designed to divert attention from the real perpetrators, and repeated long-standing calls for thorough and transparent probes into the acts of terror.

March 18, 2023 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, False Flag Terrorism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , | Leave a comment

China comments on ‘Ukrainian theory’ of Nord Stream sabotage

RT | March 15, 2023

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin found it unusual that major outlets in the West uncritically embraced the claim by unnamed US officials that a “pro-Ukrainian group” was responsible for the bombing of Nord Stream natural gas pipelines.

At the press briefing on Wednesday, Wang described the pipelines as “vital cross-border infrastructure projects,” whose destruction had a “serious impact on the global energy market and ecological environment.” China wants “an objective, impartial and professional investigation” into the bombing and those responsible held to account, the sooner the better, he added.

Asked to comment on the so-called “Ukrainian theory,” first put forth by anonymous US officials in the New York Times last week, Wang noted the sudden change of behavior by Western media, after they spent a month ignoring the report by journalist Seymour Hersh that blamed the US and Norway.

“We have noted that some Western media have been mysteriously quiet after Hersh reported that the US was behind the Nord Stream blast. But now these media are unusually simultaneous in making their voice heard. How would the US account for such abnormality? Is there anything hidden behind the scene?” Wang said.

Nord Stream 1 and 2, pipelines built under the Baltic Sea to carry Russian natural gas to Germany and onward to Western Europe, were damaged in a series of explosions in September 2022.

In early February, Hersh published a report detailing how Washington had the pipelines destroyed, describing how US divers planted the explosives and a Norwegian airplane sent the detonation signal. The US government denied all accusations, labeling Hersh’s report “utterly false and complete fiction,” while Russia and China called for an independent and transparent investigation.

The Times report quoted unnamed US officials who suggested that the saboteurs were “most likely Ukrainian or Russian nationals, or some combination of the two,” citing unspecified new intelligence. The anonymous officials insisted no US or British nationals were involved, and that there was no evidence President Vladimir Zelensky or any other Ukrainian official directed the attack, either. Kiev has officially denied any responsibility for the Nord Stream blasts.

When he was shown the Times article during an interview, Hersh laughed and asked “Are they that stupid?” referring to the outlet’s anonymous sources. Nonetheless, the story was dutifully repeated by all major Western outlets.

Russian president Vladimir Putin was likewise unconvinced. During an interview with Rossiya-1 on Tuesday, he dismissed as “complete nonsense” the notion that non-state actors could be behind the complex act of sabotage. The attacks could have only been “carried out by specialists, and supported by the entire power of a state possessing certain technologies,” he said.

March 15, 2023 Posted by | Deception, False Flag Terrorism, War Crimes | , , | 3 Comments

Sabotage of Nord Stream won’t go unpunished


Next Monday, an uneasy anniversary arrives. It will be 20 years since the invasion of Iraq by the United States. Britain was a pillar of the US-led ‘coalition of the willing.’ The Guardian columnist John Harris wrote on Sunday that it was “the greatest political and humanitarian disaster the UK had been involved in since the second world war… when the supposed political centre ground suddenly lurched somewhere reckless and catastrophic.” 

The Iraq War caused endless violence and huge levels of death. Ironically, it was Seymour Hersh who exposed that horrific chronicle of torture in the Abu Ghraib by the US troops that shocked the world.

Harris made a debatable point that the Iraq War had “profound effects” on the UK. He listed, amongst them, “a sense that politics and power had lurched away from the public, and left a huge and very uneasy gap.” Maybe he is right, but for the wrong reasons. As time passed, the Iraq War made Britain’s party politics look farcical.

Britain today has a UniParty — the party of government, which seems to consist of the same people as the party of the opposition. Britain has reached where the US has been for quite some time  — a cabal of political elites hijacking the country, operating its own agenda, regardless of which political party is formally in power — and the people at large having lost control of their government. That is why crimes like Abu Ghraib and Nord Stream go unpunished.

On March 3, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz had a top secret one-on-one with Biden in the Oval Office in what appears to have been an attempt, among other things, to reach a consensus on how to handle Hersh’s explosive report on the sabotage of Nord Stream. (Read my blog Ukraine: A war to end all wars in Europe.)

Look at the sequence of events: Four days after Scholz met Biden, New York Times carried a sensational media leak regarding Nord Stream, attributing the sabotage to a “pro-Ukrainian group” consisting of five men and one woman who used a yacht rented in Poland. 

The vessel was later found by German investigators — also a media leak in Berlin — and turned out to be the Andromeda, a Bavaria C50 sailing boat. The group reportedly embarked on their mission from Rostock on September 6, 2022. The equipment for the secret operation was allegedly transported to the port in a truck. 

Germany’s Die Zeit backed the Times narrative in real time. But the narrative itself is riddled with discrepancies. Questions are galore: How could a 15-meter chartered yacht have possibly carried an estimated 1,500-2,000 kilograms of explosives required for the sabotage? How could Andromeda, which doesn’t have a crane, hoist  such massive quantities of explosives safely into the water? 

A Russian analysis points out that “the site of the explosion, the Baltic Sea, is about 80 meters deep, which requires special diving equipment, including air tanks with a helium-oxygen mixture and pure oxygen. All in all, one would need 30 litres of a special gas mixture for one dive alone, which means there must have been dozens of bottles on board. In addition, there should have been a decompression chamber for the divers, something that the yacht is not fit for. Furthermore, it would have taken several dives and a few days to lay the explosives on the pipelines. It’s hard to imagine that these activities would have gone completely unnoticed.” 

The Times news desk evidently didn’t do any fact check. But on March 10, the chair of the Bundestag’s intelligence oversight committee, Konstantin von Notz from the Green Party, told Die Zeit that what happened was likely a “state-backed act of terrorism” and was likely conducted by a “state or quasi-state actor.” 

Scholz is skating on thin ice. He heads a coalition of Atlanticists. But Germany is not yet a UniParty country. Besides, unlike in the US or the UK, in the German political system, the public prosecutor who is investigating the Nord Stream sabotage is an autonomous entity who can’t be ordered around by politicians in power.  

The German defence minister Boris Pistorius’ reaction to the Times report shows it — that Germans don’t yet know whether this was a Ukrainian commando that acted with the knowledge of the Ukrainian government, a pro-Ukrainian group that acted without their knowledge, or whether it might have been a false flag operation. Berlin apparently doesn’t exclude official Ukrainian involvement. 

Scapegoating comes handy for Washington in such situations as an exit strategy. A report in Politico on Sunday distanced the Biden Administration from the Ukrainian regime of Zelensky, and the Nord Stream sabotage is mentioned there as one of three reasons for the “growing differences behind the scenes” between Washington and Kiev. 

For the present, though, there seems to be a tacit understanding between Biden and Scholz that they will not tear each other up over this matter. As for Zelensky, he probably has no option but to play the role of a scapegoat when necessary.

By mentioning Nord Stream as a matter of discord between Washington and Kiev, the Politico report seems to hint to Zelensky that this is a high stakes game affecting transatlantic unity and scapegoat may become necessary. 

Meanwhile, instead of pointing a finger at Washington, the Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolay Patrushev  was non-committal  on Sunday, saying, “I emphasise that any accusations that are not supported by the results of an impartial investigation cannot be trusted. Therefore, Moscow insists on an objective investigation with the participation of Russia and other interested countries. Without this, voicing one-sided subjective versions of the terrorist attack does not explain anything.”

Patrushev has virtually challenged the Biden-Scholz tandem. To be sure, an impartial investigation will have political consequences. For one thing, German public opinion is relatively fickle on the issue of weapons deliveries. Second, Scholz cannot afford a perception that he is in collusion with Biden.

Of course, if it is established that a Ukrainian commando unit or an American outfit was responsible for the sabotage, the political consequences will be massive. The German public may demand stoppage of arms supplies to Ukraine. On the other hand, if the US is responsible, the current renaissance in German-American ties will simply wither away.

Scholz is yet to understand that Transatlanticism is not the defining characteristic of the Democratic Party. His fate may turn out to be the same as Tony Blair’s. Harris wrote that the effects of Blair’s deceptions rippled on all the way to Brexit.

To quote him, “Iraq hideously sullied Blair and [Gordon] Brown’s domestic record and marked the end of the New Labour vision of Britain as a young, confident country. It reduced the fantasies of “liberal interventionism” to ash, and deepened the disaffection and unease that would lead to our exit from Europe.”

Handelsblatt newspaper in a report last Thursday pointed out that the investigation on Nord Stream may play politically into the hands of the far-left and the far-right in German politics. Can Scholz survive the deception over Nord Stream sabotage? If Ukraine is implicated, there is no going back for Germany.

March 14, 2023 Posted by | Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , , | 1 Comment

The Empire of Lies Strikes Back… Extraordinary Cover-Up of Nord Stream Terrorism

Strategic Culture Foundation | March 10, 2023

The New York Times and other Western news media ran with clumsy and blatantly diversionary claims this week, which in the end only serve to draw even more attention to the guilt of the United States in blowing up the Nord Stream gas pipelines.

Not only is the administration of U.S. President Joe Biden even more indictable over the criminal act; the absurd cover-up attempt this week exposes the Western media as nothing but a ministry of propaganda masquerading as journalism.

Four weeks ago, the eminent independent American journalist, Seymour Hersh, published a blockbuster investigative report that revealed how President Biden and senior White House staff ordered the explosive detonation of the natural gas pipelines connecting Russia to the European Union via the Baltic Sea and Germany. The legendary Hersh has an impeccable record of groundbreaking stories, from the My Lai massacre committed by U.S. troops in Vietnam in 1968 to the Abu Ghraib prison torture in Iraq under American occupation to the operation of ratlines to funnel weapons and mercenaries from Libya to Syria to fight Washington’s proxy war for regime change in Damascus.

In his seminal report on the sabotage of the Nord Stream pipelines, Hersh relied on insider Washington sources. He published claims that the United States carried out the covert operation using a team of U.S. Navy divers under the cover of NATO war maneuvers known as BALTOPS 22 last summer. Explosives were planted on the seabed during the exercises held in June 2022 and then later detonated on September 26 with the help of Norwegian military aircraft.

The convincing aspect of Hersh’s report was not just the credible detail of the operation, but that it confirmed what many independent observers had already concluded from strong circumstantial evidence about who had the motive and means to conduct the sabotage. Readers are referred to a recent editorial by Strategic Culture Foundation which compiles the background of why the United States is deemed to be the culprit.

Now here is a curious thing. While Hersh’s report provoked shockwaves around the world, Western governments and the mainstream media chose to ignore his report. In a weird parallel universe sort of way, they pretended that Hersh’s resounding revelations did not exist.

One would think that given Hersh’s reputation for world-news-breaking scoops, and given that his latest report revealed a rock-solid plausible account of how a major civilian infrastructure project was sabotaged, and further given that the implication of this report was the inculpation of the United States and its president and his senior staff in ordering an act of terrorism – one would think that, maybe, just maybe, the Western media would be obliged to give some reportage on that matter. No, far from it, they unanimously kept schtum. In a way that is quite shocking and a travesty.

The charade of silence was maintained for a month until this week when the New York Times published a report claiming an alternative explanation for the Nord Stream explosions. As if on cue, there then followed a rash of other Western media reports regurgitating or spinning the same story.

Laughably, the New York Times claimed its report was “the first significant known lead about who was responsible for the attack on the Nord Stream pipelines”. This after a month of pointedly ignoring and effectively censoring from the public any knowledge of the spellbinding Hersh article.

The thrust of this week’s “reports” (if they could be called that) are that the sabotage was carried out by “pro-Ukrainian groups” which may have involved Ukrainian or Russian nationals. The source of the claims was anonymous US officials citing purported “new intelligence”. It was also claimed that a private yacht owned by Ukrainians was used and that the CIA had tipped off German intelligence about the impending attack months before it happened.

The information reported is so vague as to be impossible to verify, or frankly to even merit credibility. We are led to believe that a sophisticated, highly technical military operation on the Baltic seabed was somehow carried off by a group of unknown paramilitaries. The New York Times and other Western media outlets published stories that on their face are outlandish. This is gutter press stuff.

Furthermore, from the way the reports are formulated it is obvious that they are meant to serve as a rebuttal to the Hersh report without actually properly acknowledging the Hersh report. Thus, the United States denies any involvement in a criminal act that it barely refuses to acknowledge. This double-think is itself indicative of guilt in the Empire of Lies.

The problem for the Western propaganda peddlers – besides sheer implausibility – is the further burden of having to provide an alibi for the Kiev regime. The U.S. and its NATO allies need to distract from Washington as the obvious author of the crime, but they also cannot afford to implicate the Kiev regime because that could inflame European and American public antipathy towards the NATO-sponsored junta. This is why the New York Times & Co appear to be involved in a tortuous balancing act of blaming Ukrainian militants for the Nord Stream blasts but also claiming that these intrepid militants managed to do so without the knowledge of President Vladimir Zelensky and his cabal. Which again makes the narrative doubly ridiculous.

There is also an important element of timing to all these Western media shenanigans. Last week, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz was hosted in the White House by Joe Biden on March 3 in what was a bizarrely private meeting. Their conversations behind closed doors were not disclosed. Both leaders stonewalled reporters about their discussions. It can be fairly speculated that Scholz was pleading with Biden for some political cover because of the mounting anger among the German public about the economic consequences of America’s policy over Ukraine and Russia. Germany’s industry and export-led economy have been ravaged by the loss of Russia’s traditional natural gas supply. Scholz and his government are seen to be behaving treacherously by going along with what appears to be American vandalism of the German economy. For the Hersh report to go unanswered is causing massive public pressure on the Berlin government. Hence this week, we saw attempts to divert public attention with a concerted Western media campaign about who supposedly blew up Nord Stream. The aim is to absolve Washington and its lackeys in Berlin.

Another timing issue was the sudden appearance of Ukrainian and Russian fascist commandoes who carried out the terrorist attack in Russia’s Bryansk region on March 2 last week. Two adults were killed and a young boy was badly injured in what was a gratuitous atrocity that made international headlines. That daring raid, however, brought to public attention the existence of pro-Ukrainian militants who appear to act as lone wolves in international operations. This is the very kind of profile that the New York Times and other Western media outfits attributed to the Nord Stream sabotage. That begs the reasonable question: was the Bryansk terror attack enabled by Western military intelligence handlers in order to promote the subsequent media disinformation effort concerning the Nord Stream pipelines?

Let’s cut to the chase. The Western media disinformation campaign is a crude joke. It can’t distract from the glaring facts that the United States and its NATO allies carried out an act of international terrorism against European companies and governments, and an act of war against Russia as the main owner of the 1,200-kilometer Nord Stream pipelines worth at least $20 billion to construct. That criminal act was plausibly ordered by an American president and his White House aides. The geopolitical motives are overwhelming as are the self-indicting admissions by Biden and his aides before and after the odious event.

The cack-handed attempts this week to cover up by the Western media only serve to further incriminate the United States and its NATO crime partners. In addition, the Western media are exposed more than ever as being complicit in propagandizing war crimes. The New York Times and other Western news outlets pompously claim to be pinnacles of journalism and defenders of public interest and democracy. They are nothing but the propaganda ministry for Washington – the Empire of Lies.

March 11, 2023 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, False Flag Terrorism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , , | Leave a comment

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

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

By Aaron Maté | March 8, 2023

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Ukraine responds to Nord Stream claims

RT | March 8, 2023

Kiev had nothing to do with the sabotage of the Nord Stream pipelines, the Ukrainian defense minister has said in response to media reports blaming last September’s explosions in the Baltic Sea on a “pro-Ukraine” group.

“For me, it’s a little bit strange story,” Aleksey Reznikov replied when asked about the issue after his arrival at an informal meeting of EU defense ministers in Stockholm on Wednesday.

“This story has nothing [to do] with us,” he said, expressing confidence that “the investigation [by] the official authorities will describe every detail” of what had happened.

The claims of Ukrainian involvement in the sabotage are “like a complement for our special forces, but this is not our activity,” the minister added.

Journalists asked Reznikov if he was concerned that the latest media reports could lead to a reduction in EU support for Kiev amid the conflict with Moscow. “No, I’m not concerned. Everything would be OK,” he said.

On Tuesday, the New York Times reported, citing US officials and unspecified new intelligence, that a “pro-Ukrainian group” may have been behind the September attack that disabled the Nord Stream 1 and 2 pipelines, which were built to deliver Russian gas to Europe via Germany. The US paper’s anonymous sources stressed that “no American or British nationals were involved” in the sabotage.

A few hours later, several German outlets claimed the country’s investigators looking into the Nord Stream blasts had found that a yacht reportedly used in the attack belonged to a Polish-based firm, owned by two Ukrainians.

Kremlin press-secretary Dmitry Peskov described the reports in the US and German media as “a coordinated media hoax campaign,” aimed at diverting attention from the actual “masterminds” of the sabotage.

Last month, veteran American investigative journalist Seymour Hersh released a bombshell report blaming Washington for destroying the Nord Stream pipelines. According to an informed source who talked to Hersh, explosives were planted on the pipelines in the Baltic Sea back in June 2022 by US Navy divers under the guise of a NATO exercise, and detonated remotely two months later. The White House has denied the report by the Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter, calling it “utterly false and complete fiction.”

March 8, 2023 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, False Flag Terrorism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , , | 1 Comment

The Forgotten Terrorist Pretext of the Vietnam War

By Jim Bovard | The Libertarian Institute | February 16, 2023

Since 9/11, terrorism has become the ultimate entitlement program for America’s political elite. Whether it is illegally spying on Americans or blowing Somali dissidents to pieces, invoking terrorism provides all the cover needed for Washington policymakers. But the disastrous results of granting politicians a blank check to fight terrorism should have been undeniable almost 60 years ago.

Back in the 1960s, terrorism was what the communists did. Anti-terrorist moral fervor and ideological blinders propelled the U.S. into its biggest foreign policy blunder since World War II.

As the French Foreign Legion struggled to reconquer Vietnam in the wake of World War II, the U.S. government constantly embellished the storyline to demonize the communist opposition. A CIA operative provided materials for a massive bomb that ripped through a main square in Saigon in 1952. A Life magazine photographer was waiting on the scene, and his resulting snap appeared with a caption blaming the carnage on Viet Minh Communists. The New York Times headlined its report: “Reds’ Time Bombs Rip Saigon Center.” The bombing was touted as “one of the most spectacular and destructive single incidents in the long history of revolutionary terrorism” committed by “agents here of the Vietminh.” The press coverage boosted public support for U.S. government aid to the French army fighting the Communists. A Vietnamese warlord named General Trinh Minh Thé, a CIA collaborator, claimed credit for the bomb but the U.S. media ignored his statement.

In the wake of the French defeat in 1954, U.S. military advisors poured into Vietnam. In 1961, President John F. Kennedy declared: “Now we have a problem in making our power credible, and Vietnam is the place.” The Kennedy administration sought credibility by profoundly deceiving the American people and Congress regarding its Vietnam policy. JFK violated the limits on the number of American military advisors established in the 1954 Geneva peace treaty between the French and the Vietnamese communists. He also deceived the American public by mislabeling the growing U.S. contingent in South Vietnam as advisors at a time when they were becoming actively engaged in fighting.

The US government regarded the South Vietnamese government headed by Ngo Dinh Diem as corrupt, oppressive, and inept. The Pentagon Papers described a May 8, 1963 debacle in the city of Hue, South Vietnam: “Government troops fire on a Buddhist protest demonstration, killing nine and wounding fourteen. The incident triggers a nationwide Buddhist protest and a crisis of popular confidence for the Diem regime. [The Government of South Vietnam] maintains the incident was an act of [Viet Cong] terrorism.”

The Diem government was outraged that the Buddhists demanded legal equality with Catholics and the right to fly the Buddhist flag. In August 1963, South Vietnamese Special Forces “carried out midnight raids against Buddhist pagodas throughout the country. More than 1,400 people, mostly monks were arrested and many of them were beaten,” according to the Pentagon Papers. The CIA was bankrolling these Special Forces, which were supposed to be used for covert operations against the Viet Cong or North Vietnam, not for religious repression. Diem’s terrorizing of the Buddhists swayed the U.S. to back a coup that led to his assassination a few months later.

The Lyndon Johnson administration exploited the terrorist label to sway Americans to support greater U.S. involvement in Vietnam. In a special message to Congress on May 18, 1964 seeking additional fund for Vietnam, LBJ declared, “the Viet Cong guerrillas, under orders from their Communist masters in the North, have intensified terrorist actions against the peaceful people of South Vietnam. This increased terrorism requires increased response.” Johnson scorned a proposal by French president Charles de Gaulle for a Geneva conference on the growing Vietnam conflict because LBJ declared the conference would “ratify terror.” In a June 23, 1964 press conference, LBJ declared that “our purpose is peace. Our people in South Viet-Nam are helping to protect people against terror.”

U.S. policymakers were hungry for a pretext to unleash bombing. On May 15, 1964, U.S. Ambassador Henry Cabot Lodge recommended planning for the South Vietnamese air force to hit “a specific target in North Vietnam,” carefully timed after a “terrorist act of proper magnitude beforehand by the North Vietnamese,” the Pentagon Papers revealed.

At that time, the U.S. was already carrying out an array of “non-attributable hit-and run” raids against North Vietnam, including “kidnappings of North Vietnamese citizens for intelligence information, parachuting sabotage and psychological warfare teams into the north, commando raids from the sea to blow up rail and highway bridges, and the bombardment of North Vietnamese coastal installations by PT boats,” according to the Pentagon Papers. Thai pilots flying American planes bombed and strafed North Vietnamese villages. But the Johnson administration denied that the U.S. was committing any provocations.

Johnson had already decided to attack North Vietnam to boost his election campaign. On August 2, 1964, the destroyer U.S.S. Maddox fired on North Vietnamese ships near the North Vietnamese coast. Two days later, the Maddox reported that it was under attack from North Vietnamese PT boats. Within hours, the ship’s commander wired Washington that the reports of an attack on his ship may have been wildly exaggerated: “Entire action leaves many doubts.” But the Maddox’s initial report was all LBJ needed to go on national television and announce that he had ordered immediate “retaliatory” airstrikes against North Vietnam. Johnson railroaded a resolution through Congress granting him unlimited authority to attack North Vietnam. The resolution was written months earlier and the administration was waiting for the right moment to unveil it.

Both the Viet Cong and the South Vietnamese government were terrorizing people at the time the U.S. involvement rapidly expanded in 1965. But the U.S. government looked only at the Viet Cong’s terrorism to justify launching its own bombing campaign that killed far more civilians than did the Viet Cong or the North Vietnamese army prior to the end of the war.

The American media endlessly recited the terrorist storyline that the U.S. government created to justify ramping up the Vietnam War. University of California Professor Daniel Hallin observed, “The theme of terrorism directed against civilians was central to television’s image of the enemy… Television coverage of the North Vietnamese… focused on terror to the almost total exclusion of politics. The American media also almost completely ignored attacks on Vietnamese civilians by the U.S. military.”

The political racketeering that spawned the Vietnam War should remind Americans to be wary of any salvation mission championed by their rulers. The U.S. government perennially claims to be an innocent bystander after its covert interventions unleash havoc abroad. There is no shortage of evil governments and evil factions that butcher innocent people. But foreign atrocities, real or imagined, don’t make Washington trustworthy.

Jim Bovard is the author of Public Policy Hooligan (2012), Attention Deficit Democracy (2006), Lost Rights: The Destruction of American Liberty (1994), and 7 other books.

February 16, 2023 Posted by | False Flag Terrorism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , , | 4 Comments

Well, It’s bird flu… again

By Kit Knightly | OffGuardian | February 5, 2023

Hey remember last year? Remember the spring “bird flu outbreak”?

Remember how it was all just a fear-porn story designed to discourage people from eating real food, drive up the price of poultry and eggs and sell more vaccines?

Well, guess what…

It’s groundhog day again. And I mean that quite literally since it was actually reported on February 2nd:

Bird flu has jumped to mammals in the UK – so how worried should humans be?

Yes, the experts are back and they have more “warnings”. But don’t worry “It’s not that alarming”… yet. Although clearly someone at the New York Times didn’t get the “don’t be alarmist” memo, because they went with

An Even Deadlier Pandemic Could Soon Be Here

Anyway, the story is that scientists have found bird flu in otters, bears, dolphins and foxes in the last year. And that means it could potentially jump to humans.

Because the order goes otters->bears->dolphins->foxes->people. That’s like biology 101.

Seriously though, what makes this story nonsense is the only reason they found this virus is that they were looking for it. After last year’s “scare” they have increased screening…using PCR tests.

PCR tests which don’t diagnose disease, don’t reliably work and can find basically anything basically anywhere. You know the arguments.

Essentially, now, all that needs to happen is some nature reserve sends a sample of (dead?) otter to a government lab, the lab runs “routine bird flu screening”… and finds it. Becuase of course it does.

Just like that Bird flu can jump from birds to otters to foxes to dolphins.

… like how “Covid” jumped from bats to people to goats to guavas to motor oil. Remmeber?

But what’s the next step?

Well, testing people of course, since we know it can infect mammals now.

And, like clockwork, cue the “experts” in the Guardian saying [emphasis added]:

scientists warn there is a possibility that bird flu viruses could change and gain the ability to spread easily between people. Monitoring for human infection is extremely important

And – just like Covid – if they start testing everyone for bird flu, they will find it.

We all know where it goes from there: Vaccines.

But, apparently, the already-approved vaccines aren’t good enough. Just ask the New York Times

Perhaps the best news is that we have several H5N1 vaccines already approved by the Food and Drug Administration whose safety and immune response have been studied… The current plan is to mass-produce them if and when such an outbreak occurs, based on the particular variant involved […] Worryingly, all but one of the approved vaccines are produced by incubating each dose in an egg.

Good news though, there’s a solution on the way. An mRNA-based solution…

The mRNA-based platforms used to make two of the Covid vaccines also don’t depend on eggs […] those vaccines can be mass-produced faster, in as little as three months. There are currently no approved mRNA vaccines for influenza, but efforts to make one should be expedited.

It really is groundhog day all over again.

February 5, 2023 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity, Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular | | Leave a comment

The Censorship of Mercola — A Timeline

By Dr. Joseph Mercola | January 30, 2023

While the drug and chemical industries have attacked and tried to discredit me for years, blatant censorship didn’t begin until 2020, after the outbreak of the COVID pandemic.

For legal and historical purposes, I am sharing a timeline of events with you that document a chain of coordinated events and attacks against me and this website. My first article about the pandemic came out February 4, 2020, in which I predicted that it was a grossly exaggerated threat that would enrich pandemic vaccine makers.

March 8, 2020, I published an interview with bioweapons expert Francis Boyle, Ph.D., in which he warned that SARS-CoV-2 had all the hallmarks of a genetically engineered bioweapon. Boyle was among the first, if not the first, to suspect the outbreak was the result of a lab leak.

While every health authority on the planet insisted there was no treatment, and that patients simply go to the hospital to be placed on mechanical ventilation and die, I interviewed medical experts working on early treatment options and published articles detailing the potential benefits of vitamin D, zinc, quercetin and other nutraceuticals that boost immune function, as well as decades-old drugs like hydroxychloroquine.

I also published the testimony of whistleblowers such as Erin Marie Olszewski, a frontline nurse, who warned that patients were being intentionally killed on ventilators as it quickly proved to be a deadly intervention for COVID-19.

Summer of 2020 — The Suppression of Vitamin D Begins

Early on, it became apparent that vitamin D levels and spending time outdoors played an important role in the risk of infection and the ultimate outcomes. This has been true for all respiratory infections, so it should come as no surprise it is also true for coronavirus infections. Despite that, health authorities insisted vitamin D was useless.

The only way out of the pandemic, they said, would be a vaccine — and this despite the fact that no previous attempts at creating a safe and effective coronavirus vaccine had ever succeeded because of its rapid ability to mutate.

In June 2020, I launched an information campaign, StopCovidCold, about vitamin D. I released a downloadable scientific report detailing how and why optimizing vitamin D levels among the general population could minimize the impact of the next wave of COVID. Optimizing vitamin D is a rational, safe and inexpensive measure that no sane health official would object to. And yet, they all did.

July 21, 2020, the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) issued a press release1 calling on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) “to bring enforcement proceedings against Mercola and his companies for their unlawful disease claims that falsely and misleadingly claim to treat, cure or prevent COVID-19 infections.”

CSPI accused me of falsely claiming “that at least 22 vitamins, supplements and other products available for sale on his web site can prevent, treat, or cure COVID-19 infection.” This despite the fact that their Appendix of Illegal Claims2 clearly show I made no COVID-19-related claims to any specific products and only referenced published studies and mainstream media articles to support my opinions.

In an August 12, 2020, email, CSPI president Dr. Peter Lurie — a former FDA associate commissioner — also made the spurious claim that I was “profiting from the pandemic” through “anti-vaccine fearmongering:” 3

“Mercola brazenly has claimed that many of his products are coronavirus treatments or cures, including vitamin C, vitamin D, zinc, selenium, ‘molecular hydrogen,’ licorice, and other substances.

Besides profiting from the pandemic, Mercola has seemingly advised people to contract COVID-19 after taking supposedly ‘immunity boosting’ supplements (which of course he sells). Making matters worse, Mercola is a leading proponent of anti-vaccine conspiracy theories — and has been fearmongering against prospective COVID-19 vaccines even before such vaccines are available!”

By mid-August, a comprehensive campaign to put an end to had been launched, with Laurie asking CSPI members to flood the FDA and FTC with prewritten Tweets, urging them to take action against us. He also urged “state attorneys general to investigate how they may further protect consumers from Mercola’s illegal marketing.”4

Not surprisingly, CSPI is funded by the Rockefeller Foundation, the Rockefeller Family Fund, Bloomberg Philanthropies and other billionaire-owned foundations. It’s also partnered with Bill Gates’ agrichemical PR group, the Cornell Alliance for Science. Greg Jaffe, who heads up CSPI’s Biotechnology Project, is also the associate director of legal affairs at Alliance for Science.

Winter of 2020 — Vitamin D Attacks Heat Up

The attacks against me really heated up though after I published a peer-reviewed scientific paper5 on the benefits of vitamin D at the end of October 2020. With that, I established my medical and scientific merit and my right to a professional opinion, which is something the U.S. Constitution absolutely provides for.

The paper, “Evidence Regarding Vitamin D and Risk of COVID-19 and Its Severity,” published in the journal Nutrients, was coauthored by William Grant, Ph.D., and Dr. Carol Wagner, both of whom are part of the GrassrootsHealth expert vitamin D panel.

As noted in that paper, dark skin color, increased age, pre-existing chronic conditions and vitamin D deficiency are all features of severe COVID disease, and of these, vitamin D deficiency is the only factor that is modifiable. As such, it would be foolish to ignore, especially since vitamin D supplements are readily available and low cost.

Christmas Eve 2020, attorney general Letitia James sent us a cease and desist notice, demanding we stop sharing information about how immune-boosting nutritional supplements might lower your risk of COVID, including vitamin D, zinc, NAC and vitamin C.

February 2021, FDA Tries to Silence Protected Speech

After the new presidential administration took over, on February 18, 2021, the Rockefeller-funded CSPI and AG James got their wish, as the FDA sent us a warning letter for “Unapproved and Misbranded Products Related to Coronavirus Disease 2019.”6 Laurie even publicly bragged7 about his ability to influence the FDA to take action against us.

The FDA’s letter highlighted statements in articles on my website that were fully referenced and supported by published science, and none of the articles cited had any commercial advertising linking the information to my products, as per the law. We had done nothing illegal or irregular in that regard, and my professional opinions are protected under the U.S. Constitution.

Needless to say, we fully addressed both James’ cease and desist notice and the FDA’s warning letter, putting them both on notice that they cannot censor protected speech simply because they don’t like what’s being said.

On a side note, William Correll, the director of the Office of Compliance at the FDA who signed the warning letter, sadly “passed away suddenly” just two months later, on April 18 “after a short battle with COVID-19.”8

Gates-Funded Front Group Gets on the Bandwagon

The agrochemical front group Cornell Alliance for Science (CAS),9 the primary funding for which comes from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation,10 also jumped on the bandwagon, falsely stating11 that “pages advertising vitamin C and quercetin as having ‘synergistic effects that make them useful in the prevention and early at-home treatment of COVID-19′” were still available on my website nearly a month after the FDA’s warning letter.

To be clear, we had fully referenced scientific news articles. News articles are NOT “advertising,” as they do not link to any specific products, nor do they refer to or recommend any specific brands. In the case of the warning for vitamin C, the article discussed hospitals utilizing IV vitamin C for the treatment of COVID-19 and sepsis.

Such coordinated attacks are to be expected, though, considering Gates’ influence over the operation, and seeing how CAS and CSPI work closely together — a fact CAS admitted in its hit piece.12

March 2021, Booksellers Urged to Ban My Book

Around that same time (February 11, 2021), my book “The Truth About COVID-19” also went up for presale, and by early March, booksellers in the U.S., U.K. and Australia were being pressured not to sell it, or to add some sort of misinformation warning label to it. As reported by Sky News March 5, 2021:13

“In the UK, more than 20 million vaccine doses have been administered as part of efforts to defeat COVID-19, but worries continue that misinformation is stopping some people from having the jab. Shadow health minister Alex Norris told Sky News:

‘Getting our population vaccinated is a massive priority and it is very sad to see these things so freely available. We would hope that retailers would act responsibly and have a look at whether they want to be associated with such products and whether they want to be seen to be profiting off such products.'”

Shady ‘Anti-Hate’ Outfit Publishes Hit List

March 3, 2021, the Center for Countering Digital Hate (CCDH) — a shady U.K.-based organization with anonymous funding led by Imran Ahmed — also got in on the action, publishing a hit list14 of the “Top 10 anti-vaxxers” it wanted permanently silenced and eradicated from public forums. The list showed, by way of crossing out names, which had already been successfully deplatformed, and from which social media.

While precious little was (and still is) know about the CCDH, some digging revealed Ahmed had been appointed to the steering committee of the U.K. government’s Commission on Countering Extremism Pilot Task Force in April 2020, just as fearmongering about the COVID-19 pandemic was ramping up. The CCDH is also linked to a number of technocratic centers within the globalist network through its board members.15

More Fabrications and Lies From the CCDH

A couple of weeks later (March 15), Ahmed somehow managed to get an article titled “Dismantling the Anti-Vaxx Industry”16 published in the journal Nature Medicine. In it, Ahmed lied, claiming he’d “recorded a private, three-day meeting of the world’s most prominent anti-vaxxers,” when in fact it was a public, international conference given online, attended by thousands around the world, all of whom had access to the recordings.

He could have done the normal, ethical and truly journalistic thing and admitted he simply attended a public virtual conference, but instead he twisted it into some risky undercover agent mission where he secretly recorded private discussions that revealed the inner workings of “the opposition.”

Then, March 21, 2021, the CCDH published the fabricated “Disinformation Dozen” report,17,18,19 in which Ahmed falsely claimed 12 people and/or organizations, including yours truly, were responsible for 65% of all anti-vaccine content on social media.

March 24, 2021 — AGs Try to Censor Protected Speech

March 24, 2021, 12 attorneys general sent a letter20 to the CEOs of Twitter and Facebook, seeking their “cooperation in curtailing the dissemination” of COVID jab “misinformation” — all based on the fabrications of the CCDH. According to the AGs:

“The people and groups spreading falsehoods and misleading Americans about the safety of coronavirus vaccines are threatening the health of our communities, slowing progress in getting our residents protected from the virus, and undermining economic recovery in our states.

As safe and effective vaccines become available, the end of this pandemic is in sight. This end, however, depends on the widespread acceptance of these vaccines as safe and effective. Unfortunately, misinformation disseminated via your platforms has increased vaccine hesitancy …

According to a recent report by the Center for Countering Digital Hate, so-called ‘anti-vaxxer’ accounts on Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and Twitter reach more than 59 million followers … Given ‘anti-vaxxers’ reliance on your platforms, you are uniquely positioned to prevent the spread of misinformation about coronavirus vaccines …”

Facebook Set the Record Straight

August 18, 2021, after conducting an internal investigation, Monika Bickert, vice president of Facebook content policy, publicly called out the falsehoods in “The Disinformation Dozen” report, stating:21

“In recent weeks, there has been a debate about whether the global problem of COVID-19 vaccine misinformation can be solved simply by removing 12 people from social media platforms. People who have advanced this narrative contend that these 12 people are responsible for 73% of online vaccine misinformation on Facebook.

There isn’t any evidence to support this claim … In fact, these 12 people are responsible for about just 0.05% of all views of vaccine-related content on Facebook. This includes all vaccine-related posts they’ve shared, whether true or false, as well as URLs associated with these people.”

Bickert highlighted the fact that Ahmed had preselected the 12 individuals listed in the report, and that his “faulty narrative” was based on nothing more than “a narrow set of 483 pieces of content over six weeks from only 30 groups, some of which are as small as 2,500 users.”

“Further, there is no explanation for how the organization behind the report identified the content they describe as ‘anti-vax’ or how they chose the 30 groups they included in their analysis,” Bickert noted. “There is no justification for their claim that their data constitute a ‘representative sample’ of the content shared across our apps.”

Apparently, no one in government was smart enough to see the flaws in the CCDH’s report though, and a long list of officials cited the CCDH’s fabricated claims throughout the remainder of 2021, even long after Facebook denounced its claims. What’s more, even though Facebook admitted the CCDH’s claims were bogus, they still took action against accounts by applying penalties and/or bans.

April 8, 2021 — AGs Call on Social Media to Ban ‘the 12’

April 8, 2021, attorneys general James and William Tong published an op-ed in The Washington Post,22 again calling on social media companies to ban the “disinformation dozen” identified by the CCDH. The lack of acceptance of novel gene therapy technology, they claimed, was all because a small group of individuals with a social media presence — myself included — were successfully misleading the public with lies about nonexistent vaccine risks.

April 27, 2021 — Dr. Hotez Calls for Cyberwarfare

April 27, 2021, Dr. Peter Hotez, president of the Sabin Vaccine Institute23 — which has received tens of millions of dollars from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation,24,25 — escalated the threat even further in an article published in the journal Nature.

Citing the CCDH’s findings, Hotez called for cyberwarfare experts to be enlisted in the war against vaccine safety advocates and people who are “vaccine hesitant.” He wrote:26

“Accurate, targeted counter-messaging from the global health community is important but insufficient, as is public pressure on social-media companies. The United Nations and the highest levels of government must … move to dismantle anti-vaccine groups in the United States.

Efforts must expand into the realm of cyber security, law enforcement, public education and international relations. A high-level inter-agency task force reporting to the UN secretary-general could assess the full impact of anti-vaccine aggression, and propose tough, balanced measures.

The task force should include experts who have tackled complex global threats such as terrorism, cyber attacks and nuclear armament, because anti-science is now approaching similar levels of peril. It is becoming increasingly clear that advancing immunization requires a counteroffensive.”

In short, Hotez called for the use of warfare tactics on law abiding American citizens, and the Nature journal actually published this blatant threat. One day later, April 28, the CCDH published a second report, “Disinformation Dozen: The Sequel,”27 which focused on Big Tech’s failure to get rid of us “despite bipartisan calls from Congress.”

To understand the massive reach the CCDH gained, despite no one having heard of them before COVID, consider this: By the end of August 2021, there were 84,700 Google search results for CCDH’s defamatory phrase “disinformation dozen,” including 16,000 news stories in the international press, nearly all of which parroted the CCDH’s defamatory statements verbatim and reported them as fact.

May 2021 — Financial Warfare Led to Removal of COVID Articles

Shortly after the op-ed by AGs James and Tong appeared, our business bank accounts were abruptly shut down and our credit cards canceled. Our business partners also had their PayPal accounts shut down.

This new threat, which I could not defend against in a court of law, led to my May 4 decision to remove all articles related to vitamin D, vitamin C, zinc and COVID-19 from my website.

July 2021 — The White House Publicly Calls for Censorship

In mid-July 2021, the White House stepped in to pressure Facebook to purge “anti-vaxxers” from its platform. Then-press secretary Jen Psaki regurgitated the CCDH’s false claims, saying:28

“There’s about 12 people who are producing 65% of anti-vaccine misinformation on social media platforms. All of them remain active on Facebook, despite some even being banned on other platforms, including ones that Facebook owns.

Facebook needs to move more quickly to remove harmful, violative posts. Posts that would be within their policy for removal often remain up for days, and that’s too long. The information spreads too quickly.”

In another mid-July press conference, President Joe Biden himself demanded social media take action against “the disinformation dozen,” claiming our “misinformation” was “killing people.”29,30 None of these officials ever questioned the authority of the CCDH. Facebook spokesperson Dani Lever responded to the White House’s demands, saying:

“We will not be distracted by accusations which aren’t supported by the facts. The fact is that more than 2 billion people have viewed authoritative information about COVID-19 and vaccines on Facebook, which is more than any other place on the internet … The facts show that Facebook is helping save lives. Period.”

Summer of 2021 — A Parade of Hit Pieces

July 24, 2021, the New York Times named me the No. 1 superspreader of COVID misinformation online.31 According to the NYT itself, this was the most-read article of the year up to that point. Penned by Sheera Frenkel, it was so littered with blatant lies, my attorneys sent her a retraction demand.32

For example, she claimed the FDA has levied multimillion-dollar fines against me. This is a complete fabrication, as I’ve never been fined by the FDA. She also implied that I misrepresented myself as a published author of a paper on vitamin D for COVID-19, stating she was “unable to verify” my claim. This despite being given a direct link to the paper! My paper can also be located on in seconds by searching my name.

Frenkel boldly claimed that I am the No.1 spreader of misinformation online, but she didn’t even qualify what “misinformation” actually is. Without qualifying what it is you’re looking for, how can you quantify it? She also provided no proof that I in fact had the greatest reach of all the individuals reporting on COVID injections. My name didn’t even show up in the Top 15 in a Crowdtangle search for anti-vax Facebook posts.

Frenkel’s hit piece was followed up by CNN, which August 4 aired a segment show CNN reporter Randi Kaye stalking me across central Florida. And, of course, Kaye’s primary citation for her accusations against me was the CCDH.

August 4, 2021 — Mercola Deletes Articles After 48 Hours

August 4, 2021, I also implemented yet another change on my website. I had already removed all articles relating to COVID-19 and vitamin D. At this point, I deleted over 15,000 articles from the past 20-plus years from my website as the business and personal threats grew out of hand.

After 48 hours, articles were instead migrated over to Substack, where only paid members through a private membership agreement have access to them. This was a painful but necessary workaround, as the paid subscription provides a layer of protection against these threats.

September 7, 2021 — Senator Warren’s Book Burning Campaign

September 7, 2021, U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren sent a letter33 to Andy Jassy, chief executive officer of, demanding an “immediate review” of Amazon’s algorithms to weed out books peddling “COVID misinformation.”34,35,36

While she didn’t spell out what laws Amazon might be breaking, she warned Jassy that the company may be held legally responsible for wrongful death and homicide by selling books that “misinform” readers about COVID-19, and she specifically singled out “The Truth About COVID-19” as a prime example of the kinds of books she wanted banned.

Warren again relied on the fabrications of the CCDH, even though Facebook had refuted the CCDH report as baseless three weeks before she sent that letter.

“Dr. Mercola has been described as ‘the most influential spreader of coronavirus misinformation online,'” Warren wrote, adding: “Not only was this book the top result when searching either ‘COVID-19’ or ‘vaccine’ in the categories of ‘All Departments’ and ‘Books’; it was tagged as a ‘Best Seller’ by Amazon and the ‘#1 Best Seller’ in the ‘Political Freedom’ category.

The book perpetuates dangerous conspiracies about COVID-19 and false and misleading information about vaccines. It asserts that vitamin C, vitamin D and quercetin … can prevent COVID-19 infection … And the book contends that vaccines cannot be trusted, when study after study has demonstrated the overwhelming effectiveness and safety of COVID-19 vaccines.

It should come as no surprise that the book is rife with misinformation. One of the authors, Dr. Mercola, is one of the ‘Disinformation Dozen,’ a group responsible for 65% of anti-vaccine content on Facebook and Twitter …”

YouTube Deplatforms Mercola in Breach of Contract

Warren’s attempt at getting Amazon to ban my book was swiftly followed up by YouTube, which deleted my account September 29, 2021, allegedly for violating community guidelines. The problem was, they’d published and implemented those new guidelines that very morning.

While I disagreed with YouTube’s censorship, when its “COVID-19 misinformation” policy was implemented back in April 2021, I carefully avoided posting any content on YouTube that might violate that guideline. At no point had I ever received a violation notice from YouTube.

On the morning of September 29, 2022, at 9 a.m. EDT, The Washington Post published an article titled “YouTube Is Banning Joseph Mercola and a Handful of Other Anti-Vaccine Activists.” According to the WaPo :37

“YouTube is taking down several video channels associated with high-profile anti-vaccine activists including Joseph Mercola … As part of a new set of policies aimed at cutting down on anti-vaccine content on the Google-owned site, YouTube will ban any videos that claim that commonly used vaccines approved by health authorities are ineffective or dangerous.

The company previously blocked videos that made those claims about coronavirus vaccines, but not ones for other vaccines like those for measles or chickenpox.”

In short, as of September 29, 2021, you could no longer post any video discussing or stating that any vaccine is dangerous or ineffective. Six minutes after the publication of that WaPo article, I received an email from YouTube informing me that my entire channel had been deplatformed, having been found in violation of this new policy.

October 2021 — CNN’s Second Hit Piece

October 4, 2021, two months to the day after their first attempted hit piece against my book, “The Truth About COVID-19,” CNN aired a follow-up in which they echoed Warren’s call for Amazon to ban the sale of my book.

Like something straight out of George Orwell’s “1984” newsspeak dictionary, CNN host Anderson Cooper said my book is loaded with “mistruths” about COVID. Yet he failed to present a single piece of evidence to back up that claim.

This is one of the oldest propaganda trick in the book. If you just spew out enough derogatory terms about your opponent, people will forget the fact that you provided zero proof to back up your position.

November 2021 — Mercola Sues Sen. Warren

November 7, 2021, two months after Warren tried to get my best-selling book “The Truth About COVID-19” banned from Amazon, I, my coauthor Ronnie Cummins, my publisher and Robert F. Kennedy Jr., who wrote our foreword, sued Warren,38 both in her official and personal capacities, for violating our First Amendment rights and scaring book sellers into pulling and/or suppressing sales.

As a government official, it is illegal for her violate the U.S. Constitution, and pressuring private businesses to do it for her is not a legal workaround.

February 2022 — NIH Director Blames Mercola For Pandemic Continuation

In February 2022, former National Institutes of Health director Dr. Francis Collins blamed me personally for the government’s inability to bring the COVID pandemic to a close. This despite the fact that I was by then heavily censored just about everywhere. The only people, really, who could see my information were those who subscribed to my newsletter and received it by email.

August 2022 — NYT Airs Hit Piece Documentary

Fast-forward to August 2022, The New York Times published the documentary “Superspreader,” featuring yours truly, on FX and Hulu (both of which are owned by Disney). They clearly went through a lot of trouble, trying to dig up dirt from anyone they could find from my past — some going back 40 years, to my medical school days — who would be able to share some tidbit with which they could discredit me with.

But it seems they came up empty handed: After a year of investigation, they couldn’t come up with anything. Surprisingly, they even showed two people who claimed I’d saved their lives. All the other interviews were with people who don’t actually know me. One was with a Chicago journalist who interviewed me once — 13 years ago. Two classmates from med school, whom I haven’t seen in over 40 years, also described their impressions.

Ironically, yet again, just one week before the “Superspreader” program aired, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reversed all of its COVID-19 guidelines, thereby proving my position on COVID was correct all along. Of course, this was never mentioned in their program though.

September 23, 2022 — Mercola Website Taken Down in Cyberattack

Next up was a cyberattack that took down my entire website and destroyed our servers. Cyberattacks have been ongoing for the past six years, but the one that took place September 23, 2022, finally got through our defenses. By that time, my reach on social media had been throttled back to next to nothing, and my website was about the only place you could find my articles (with the exception of republications, which I allowed).

September 28, 2022 — Mercola Sues Google and YouTube

Warren isn’t the only one I’ve had to sue to protect my First Amendment right. In September 28, 2022, I also filed a lawsuit39 against Google, YouTube and Alphabet Inc. for breach of contract.40

As detailed in my complaint, YouTube unilaterally amended the contract without notice, which is a violation of its own terms of service, and then used this last-minute amendment to justify removing my content, which went back to 2005, the same year YouTube was founded. At the time YouTube deleted my content, I had more than 300,000 subscribers, and my videos had collectively garnered more than 50 million views.

The WaPo article was embargoed until the morning of September 29 in order to prevent me (and anyone else affected by this change) from reviewing the new policy, take steps to bring my channel into compliance, or move my content to another platform. Instead, they simply deleted 16 years’ worth of intellectual property, without warning.

This is a clear violation of its own terms of service, which state that YouTube “will provide reasonable advance notice” of any changes to the terms of service, and that users will have “the opportunity to review them” and to remove content if they do not agree to the new terms.

YouTube’s terms of service also include a “three strikes” policy, where users are given three warnings and opportunities to remove content that violates the guidelines before being banned. I had no “strikes” against my channel on the day I was deplatformed and deleted.

I’m also suing YouTube for unjust enrichment, as for the last 16 years, my video content, having generated in excess of 50 million views, has been of great financial benefit to YouTube, allowing them to increase advertising revenue on the site. Additionally, they’ve refused to allow me to retrieve any of this content, which they still have in their possession. So, YouTube has unjustly benefited at my expense.

January 2023 — Third Lawsuit Filed to Protect Free Speech

January 10, 2023, I, along with several other plaintiffs, also filed a lawsuit41 against The Washington Post, the BBC, the Associated Press and Reuters — also known as the Trusted News Initiative (TNI),42 a self-appointed Pharma and Big Tech industry partner that has spent the past couple years playing judge and jury of news.

It has been doing everything it can to censor what it doesn’t want the public to hear. As noted in the complaint, the TNI has not only censored free speech, it has also engaged in antitrust activity. Specifically, “Federal antitrust law has its own name for this kind of ‘industry partnership’: it’s called a ‘group boycott’ and is a per se violation of the Sherman Act.”

As evidence of this allegation, our complaint references multiple public statements by TNI partners, including a March 2022 statement by Jamie Angus, then-senior news controller for BBC News, who explained TNI’s “strategy to beat disinformation.”

The Fight for Truth and Freedom Continues

The globalist cabal is extremely coordinated, as you can see. What’s more, they play dirty. But we will not give up, nor give in. Our freedom is far too precious for that, and freedom depends on getting the truth out. So, I will continue doing my part. You can help by sharing articles you think are important with family and friends, in whatever ways are available.

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Sources and References

January 30, 2023 Posted by | Full Spectrum Dominance, Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular, Video | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

What if the NY Times covered the Project Veritas Pfizer revelations?

By Bill Rice, Jr. | January 29, 2023

This is an addendum to yesterday’s “thought exercise” …. example No. 10,000 of how the mainstream press exerts its real power through its intentional (and daily) decisions to NOT write articles about important news.

The main thought here is that if the mainstream media doesn’t cover X, X is not really “news.” At least not news that’s “fit to print.”

Here are a few of the known knowables about the Project Veritas undercover sting operation.

  • An executive with Pfizer seems to say that his company is performing, or will soon perform, “gain of function” research on viruses … although the company doesn’t label these type of virus manipulations “gain-of-function” research. They instead manipulate the language and call them “directed evolution” experiments.
  • The executive admits that Covid “vaccines” – which increasing numbers of every-day citizens and the company knows are not effective at preventing infection or spread – are still a “cash cow” for the company and will probably remain a “cash cow” for the company for many years, maybe for the rest of our lives.
  • The executive admits this is not good for the public, but this is very good for Pfizer.
  • The executive acknowledges that the “regulators” who are supposed to regulate Pfizer are captured and that many of them will end up working in the industry they are supposed to be regulating.

In a sane world, all of the above revelations would be “newsworthy” as Pfizer is the company that is producing a “vaccine” and booster shots that have been injected into billions of arms.

The question reporters might want to ask is should the people of the world really trust such a company … or the government regulators who are supposed to regulate such a company.

The real question is why wouldn’t these revelations qualify as a “story” that’s worth reporting to the billions of people who are receiving experimental shots from this company and other vaccine producers?

Here are three other “known knowables” …

The Project Veritas videos have now been viewed by approximately 20 million people in the world. This right here tells us there is tremendous interest in this story.

But, still, as of this writing, I don’t think The New York Times has published one story about any of this.

Building on my theme that the Times is the “leader of the pack” of “pack journalism,” I also note that The Washington PostUSA Today, L.A. Times, Chicago Tribune, Associated Press, CBS, NBC, ABC, CNN (I’m going to stop here for space reasons) have also found this “story” is unworthy of any coverage.

YouTube (owned by Google) pulled the video for violating one of its “guidelines.” (Apparently, sting journalism – the type journalism that made “Sixty Minutes” a cultural icon – now violates their guidelines).

That is, per the organizations that helped create and defend all the official narratives, this story is actually NOT a story. In fact, any story that challenges any important narrative cannot become a story.

I would argue that all the stories that can never be allowed to become “stories” is the great unreported story (scandal) of our times.

If you read my piece on “Good vs. Evil,” you might believe as I do that this is, in fact, a silver lining of our New Normal times. At least “Evil” has shown its face. Some of us at least know – without question – the news sources we should NEVER trust.

The news organizations that will not run stories like this are the Bad Guys who must be exposed.

In fact, they long ago exposed themselves as operatives who exist to conceal and cover-up important stories and facts. The silver lining is that more people are starting to understand this valuable lesson, which can’t be a bad thing.

Continuing with yesterday’s “thought exercise,” what would happen if The New York Times did fairly cover all of the news elements of the Project Veritas story?

If this happened, even more people would know about this story, including every New York Times subscriber who has (inexplicably) bought the official narrative that Pfizer is doing great good for the world.

At least a few of these subscribers might conclude, “Maybe we should reconsider our blind trust in this company.”

More Thought Exercise Questions …

Would Pfizer continue to shower this newspaper with advertising spends if the Times wrote a few Page-1 stories that called into question Pfizer’s wonderful humanity?

Would the Bill Gates Foundation continue to dole out hundreds of millions of its “excellence in journalism” grants/subsidies to news organizations that questioned or attacked Big Pharma?

If The New York Times wrote a critical story that followed-up on the Project Veritas revelations, would any other mainstream news organization follow their lead and do the same thing?

Some precedents are more dangerous than others …

If the Times did fairly report the newsworthy elements of this story, wouldn’t this set a precedent that the working press no longer views the pronouncements of supposedly infallible companies and science experts as “settled science” after all?

If some prestigious news organization can produce journalism that embarrasses Pfizer’s top brass, couldn’t the same journalists do other pieces that embarrass the leaders of the government/science complex? You know … “hypothetically speaking.”

My thought all along has been that these “news organizations” (or officials) can’t do one real investigation because if they did one, they’d have to keep going. People would say, “Well, if they lied about that, they might have also lied about that …”

So the “key to the operation” is NOT performing the first real investigation.

Which leads me to this thought … If someone would just do the first big-time real investigation … all the faux-narrative dominoes might start to fall.

Or … maybe not. Per my thought-exercising, the first news organization that breaks ranks and performs real journalism is going to be attacked unmercifully by the rest of the pack (club). A message will be sent: Do not go THERE.

Julian Assange and WikiLeaks got that message loud and clear – which is probably why nobody else has started another version of WikiLeaks.

What to make of Fox News?

Fox News is a very interesting player in this “groupthink” landscape. Fox News did cover the Project Veritas bombshell. Tucker Carlson led with this story the other night.

Tucker Carlson happens to host the highest-rated primetime news/commentary show in North America …

… so there’s probably a key lesson here: If you do report the truth, you are not going to lose audience. You are going to gain audience.

At least in the “mainstream press,” Tucker Carlson had/has a monopoly on this shocking story.

So we have a story that tens of millions of people are very interested in … that 98 percent of the rest of the mainstream press won’t even cover.

If they do eventually cover it, it will be some kind of “fact check” that tries to tell us that this guy’s comments were all “misinformation.”

The message will be: Don’t trust what this guy said – or none of what he said matters. Or Project Veritas is a front for Q-Anon and its founder should be thrown into the gulag just like Assange was.

January 29, 2023 Posted by | Corruption, Full Spectrum Dominance, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | | Leave a comment

NYT, after deciding lockdowns are authoritarian and bad when China does them, now mildly terrified as Xi Jinping reopens & infections rise

You can take the New York Times out of lockdown, but you can’t take the lockdowns out of the New York Times.

eugyppius: a plague chronicle | December 19, 2022

From Zero Covid to No Plan: Behind China’s Pandemic U-Turn” is the headline of the latest highly revealing Times reporting on the end of Zero Covid in China. “After micromanaging the coronavirus strategy for nearly three years,” we read, “… Xi Jinping has suddenly left the populace to improvise.”

The essence of the piece is that the Chinese have rightly regained their freedoms, but they’re now left to face a terrifying virus alone and undefended by their government, which is also very bad, and possibly worse than the lockdowns, as bad as they were.

China’s party-run media has cast the shift [from Zero Covid] as a stressful but well-considered exit, opening the way back to good economic times. Warnings about the dangers of the coronavirus have swiftly disappeared, replaced by official claims that the Omicron variant is generally mild. By holding off from easing until now, the government has saved many lives, the People’s Daily said on Thursday in a long article defending Mr. Xi’s pandemic strategy as “totally correct.”

In reality, an examination of how the shift unfolded in Chongqing and elsewhere reveals a government overtaken by a cascade of Covid outbreaks, confusion over directives, economic woes and then rare political protests. …

It’s almost like mass containment doesn’t do anything aside from wrecking the economy and ruining everyone’s lives. I’m glad the Times can finally come close to admitting this now, in the last weeks of 2022.

By changing only a handful of words, you could make key sections of the article apply to Germany, or any western nation aside from Sweden or Belarus:

Even the Chinese Communist Party, a virtuoso at controlling the narrative, is finding it difficult to sell the policy lurch to anxious residents.

[Xi] turned China’s intense top-to-bottom mobilization against the pandemic into a showcase of the party’s organizational strength. For two years, his Covid war enjoyed widespread public acceptance, but eventually the effort exhausted staff, strained local finances, and appeared to drown out attempts to discuss, let alone devise, a measured transition.

Whereas in the West, we had totally open and honest discussions about the insane, enduring closures, that weren’t marked by massive censorship and government intimidation at all. Otherwise, Western nations were themselves locked in exactly this same international competition, eager to display the fruits of their superior pandemic planning to the world, and terrified that failure would cost them legitimacy. One of the reasons Germany locked down so hard during Fall 2020, was that the Merkel government had collected many international plaudits for their handling of the first wave — effectively taking credit for the seasonality of infections. They were unwilling to surrender the regard they had earned so easily.

Mr. Xi has no likely successor and could stay in power for at least another decade. But the scars from the abrupt change may feed distrust in his domineering style.

It’s not subjecting his whole country to absurd containment theatre over what is no more than an influenza-level risk that poses a political problem for Xi, but rather “the scars from the abrupt change” in policy.

Finally the reporters get around to discussing the protests.

In Zhengzhou in central China, thousands of workers clashed with police at an iPhone plant, angry about a delay in bonuses and the handling of an outbreak.

In Haizhu, a textile manufacturing district in southern China, laborers poured onto the streets over food shortages and hardships under lockdown. Migrant workers, who depend on daily work for their livelihoods, went weeks without jobs.

“I couldn’t make a living this year,” said Zhou Kaice, a street porter in Chongqing. “Some bosses I worked for started up for a few days but were then shut by lockdowns.”

Despite the strains, officials still insisted China must win its pandemic war. Provincial leaders throughout November declared their commitment to “zero Covid,” often citing Mr. Xi as their lodestone.

“If pandemic controls were loosened, that would inevitably create mass infections,” said a Xinhua editorial on Nov. 19. “Economic and social development and the public’s physical health and safety would be seriously hurt.”

How many times did we have to read that lockdowns were the ultimate way to grow the economy, because without them, the virus would somehow destroy all business activity?

It’s also interesting how anti-lockdown protestors in the West are thugs and stupid conspiracy-crazed Nazis, while in China they are “students, workers and homeowners.”

By [November], China’s most widespread protests since 1989 had begun. Students, workers and homeowners in Beijing, Shanghai and elsewhere vented against Covid controls, angered by a fire in western China that many believed, despite official denials, had killed residents trapped in their apartments by lockdowns.

“I tell you that in this world there’s only one sickness, and that’s poverty and having no freedom, and we’ve got plenty of that,” said a Chongqing man whose tirade went viral in China.

“Give me liberty or give me death,” he shouted, using the Chinese version of the American revolutionary battle cry.

Sounds like the Canadian trucker protests — you know, those guys who posed such a threat to freedom and democracy that it proved necessary to freeze their bank accounts.

At the end, the Times assures its heavily masked and vaccinated readership that “most people are staying home,” but that “if deaths rise sharply, public anger could revive” because “infections could hinder a quick economic rebound.”

Until we Decovidify the newsrooms, there will never be sane reporting on SARS-2 in any major press outlet, ever.

December 19, 2022 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Progressive Hypocrite | , , | 1 Comment