"Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it" -- Mark Twain

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A senior Iranian military commander has disclosed new details about Iran’s retaliatory strikes against Israeli-occupied territories last month, saying that 240 fighter jets from the US-led NATO military alliance were scrambled to shield the Israeli regime.

Major General Gholam-Ali Rashid, commander of the Khatam al-Anbiya Central Headquarters, made the remarks in an interview with the Persian newspaper Iran published on Sunday as he outlined new details about the recent anti-Israel operation.

In a multi-pronged attack, dubbed Operation True Promise, the Iranian armed forces launched dozens of drones and missiles at the occupied territories late on April 13 in response to the regime’s aggression on the Iranian diplomatic premises in the Syrian capital, Damascus, on April 1.

The Israeli airstrikes on Iran’s embassy compound in Damascus had killed two generals of the Quds Force of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC), Brigadier General Mohammad Reza Zahedi and General Mohammad Hadi Haji Rahimi, as well as five of their accompanying officers.

Rashid said Iran’s Operation True Promise overcame the self-proclaimed and illusory deterrence of the Zionist regime, which believed its deterrence was guaranteed by relying on the United States and NATO.

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Moscow has accused the U.S. and other allies of Ukraine of preparing strikes on Crimea, warning that in such a scenario, there would be “retaliation.”

Russian foreign ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova told a briefing on Friday that the Crimean bridge, which links Russia with the peninsula illegally annexed by Moscow since 2014, was “again under attack.”

Over the course of the war started by Vladimir Putin, there have been repeated strikes on the bridge, also known as the Kerch Bridge. The structure for Kyiv symbolizes Russian occupation but is also a key link to transport Moscow’s troops and equipment to the frontline and a strike on it could impact its war effort.

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Amid growing legal, social and political backlash, American businesses, industry groups and employment professionals are quietly scrubbing DEI from public view—though not necessarily abandoning its practice. As they rebrand programs and hot-button acronyms, they’re reassessing decades-old anti-discrimination strategies and rewriting policies that once emphasized race and gender to prioritize inclusion for all.

It’s a stark contrast to 2020, when the murder of George Floyd unleashed a racial justice movement that prompted companies to double down on policies aiming to increase opportunity for groups that have historically faced discrimination. Less than a year after the Supreme Court struck down affirmative action in colleges and universities—a landmark ruling that found race-conscious admissions violated the right to equal treatment under the Constitution—a growing contingent of critics is arguing that DEI creates inequalities of its own. …

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Former President Donald Trump argued that special counsel Jack Smith’s classified documents case against him should be tossed after prosecutors wrote that they misled a judge about the order of items in an evidence box.

In a post on Truth Social over the weekend, President Trump called for the arrest of Jack Smith and argued that the case should be thrown out based on the new court filing.

It came after Mr. Smith’s team wrote that that the order of items within a box was “not the same” as they appear in digital photographs of materials after the FBI obtained those boxes from President Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home in August 2022.

“Since the boxes were seized and stored, appropriate personnel have had access to the boxes for several reasons, including to comply with orders issued by this Court in the civil proceedings noted above, for investigative purposes, and to facilitate the defendants’ review of the boxes,” Mr. Smith’s team told U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon last week.

They added that there are “some boxes where the order of items within that box is not the same as in the associated scans.”

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In 1996, Californians voted, 55 to 45 percent, to ban the use of affirmative action in admissions to state schools and in state employment. In 2020, Californians voted to maintain the ban by an even wider margin, 57 to 43 percent.

Last year, the United States Supreme Court struck down college affirmative action policies on the grounds they violate the Fourteenth Amendment’s Equal Protection Clause.

The clear message from the people and the Court is that admission should be based upon merit. But those running the University of California (UC) maintain their obsession with race and “diversity, equity, and inclusion” (DEI). They are undeterred in their mission to enforce equity via affirmative action. Rather than complying with the law and the will of the people, they search for loopholes to achieve the racial balancing they deem ideal for the shaping of society.

The most recent example comes from its San Diego campus (UCSD) which implemented a rule that discriminates against students whose parents make more than a certain amount of money or who went to college. It just so happens that this rule greatly advantages black and Latino students. In a nice side benefit for the administrators, it hurts Asians, who are already overrepresented at the UCs (as well as most universities, as addressed in the Supreme Court case, Students for Fair Admissions v. Harvard, which specifically addressed discrimination against Asian students.)

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During RTX’s May 2 annual meeting, the company board and its financiers voted on a shareholder resolution proposing a report that would detail the human rights impact of the defense conglomerate.

In a recorded message, Sister Ann Scholz of the School Sisters of Notre Dame Cooperative fund urged shareholders to vote in favor of the proposal. “The intent is to help RTX ensure that its business practices are aligned with its human rights commitments and obligations as articulated in the U.N. Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights,” said Sholz.

The resolution, which would be non-binding if adopted, only received 5.41% of votes, according to preliminary results. A similar proposal at Lockheed Martin failed.

Transparency around the defense industry could reveal uncomfortable truths for Wall Street. Many of the investors in the defense industry claim to adhere to internationally- agreed-upon frameworks such as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the U.N. Guiding Principles, which states that businesses should “avoid infringing on the human rights of others and should address adverse human rights impacts with which they are involved.”

Webmaster addition: 

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France gives the Légion d’honneur to people whose conduct is considered exemplary.

Ghassan Abu Sitta should be eligible for such an award. He saved many lives by working as a surgeon in Gaza during the early stages of the current genocide.

Rather than being handed a Légion d’honneur, Abu Sitta was informed that there is an exclusion order against him when he flew into Paris on Saturday. As a result, he could only address the event to which he had been invited by video link.

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I think the striking events we have witnessed in American society over the last few months—and especially the last few days—are best understood if we consider a shrewd observation widely misattributed to Voltaire:

To learn who rules over you, simply find out who are not allowed to criticize.

From the years of my childhood I’d always been aware that political activism and protests were a regular feature of college life, with the 1960s movement against our Vietnam War representing one of its peaks, an effort widely lauded in our later textbooks and media accounts for its heroic idealism. During the 1980s I remember seeing a long line of crudely constructed shanties protesting South African Apartheid that spent weeks occupying the edges of the Harvard Yard or perhaps it was the Stanford Quad, and I think around the same time other shanties and protesters at UCLA maintained a long vigil in support of the Jewish Refusedniks of the USSR. Political protests seemed as much a normal aspect of college years as final exams and had largely replaced the hazing rituals and wild pranks of traditional fraternities, which were increasingly vilified as politically incorrect by hostile social censors among the students and faculty.

Over the last decade or so, the Black Lives Matter movement raised such nationwide protests by college students to new heights, both on and off campus, often involving large marches, sit-ins, or vandalism, and this was possibly propelled by the increasing influence of smartphones and social media. Meanwhile, the mainstream media regularly praised and promoted this “racial justice movement,” which reached its sharp peak following the death of George Floyd in the summer of 2020. Soon afterward, a massive wave of generally youthful political protests, riots, and looting engulfed some 200 cities across our entire nation, the worst urban unrest since the late 1960s. But unlike during that earlier era, most of our establishment media and political class fiercely denounced as outrageous any suggestions that the police be deployed to quell that violence. Indeed, in many or most cases local law enforcement stood down and did nothing, even as some of their political masters loudly raised the outcry “Defund the Police!”

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The revelations come as part of a national inquiry into thousands of cases of hemophiliacs who contracted HIV and hepatitis C from infected blood products in the 1970s and 1980s.

Internal documents from Bayer and Revlon Healthcare’s Armour Pharmaceuticals obtained by the Telegraph show that the companies knew in the early 1980s that their Factor VIII products were contaminated—but still sold them anyway.


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Shot. 97% percent of students at Selma High School in Alabama are black:

Selma High School is ranked 177th within Alabama. Students have the opportunity to take Advanced Placement® coursework and exams. The AP® participation rate at Selma High School is 27%. The total minority enrollment is 100%, and 85% of students are economically disadvantaged.

Courtesy of this demographic – and perhaps the paucity of white students – Selma High School will go all virtual because school administrators can’t ensure the safety of students if they attend in-person school… [Threats force 2 Selma schools to go virtual again, WSFA.com, April 30, 2024]:

SELMA, Ala. (WSFA) – Students at Selma High School and Selma City Schools’ Alternative Learning Center will be learning virtually for the remainder of the week following threats made to the schools on Tuesday.

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Since last November the regime of Vladimir Zelensky in Kiev has been advertising the products of a company called Piranha-Tech for newly developed electronic warfare (EW) technologies which the Israeli government of Benjamin Netanyahu is now supplying the Ukraine for operations against Russia.


According to a Russian military blogger report published on May 4, Israeli companies specializing in electronic jamming and drone technologies are behind a Ukrainian government, US, and UK-funded drone production line and deployment of the weapons on the Ukrainian battlefield. Piranha-Tech, according to this source, is 49% owned by Israeli shareholders, who developed the technology, and 51% owned by Ukrainians who are managing the battlefield supplies. Piranha-Tech anti-drone guns and jammers

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  • Israel’s military orders Palestinians to move out of eastern Rafah, warning it is about to use “extreme force” in southern Gaza.
  • The order follows a night of intense Israeli bombardment that killed 22 people in Rafah, including eight children. Earlier on Sunday, Hamas fired rockets at the Karem Abu Salem crossing, killing three Israeli soldiers.
  • It also comes as truce talks in the Egyptian capital, Cairo, appeared to stall and the Israeli cabinet voted unanimously to close Al Jazeera’s operations in the country.
  • At least 34,683 Palestinians have been killed and 78,018 wounded in Israeli attacks on Gaza since October 7. The death toll in Israel from Hamas’s October 7 attacks stands at 1,139, with dozens of people still held captive.
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President Joe Biden is facing controversy over a plan that would make some illegal immigrants qualify for government-backed health care coverage.

According to the plan which Biden announced on Friday, illegal immigrants in the United States who had received Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival status because their parents brought them into the country would be able to enroll in Obamacare.

In his announcement, Biden said, “While President Biden continues to call on Congress to provide a pathway to citizenship to Dreamers and others, he is committed to protecting and preserving DACA and providing Dreamers with the opportunities and support they need to succeed, including access to affordable, quality health care coverage.”

The president also pointed out how the plan’s major boost lies in a Biden admin rule changing Obamacare’s definition of “lawfully present” to include DACA recipients.

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A recent article by @TheEconomist pulls no punches, warning of the dangers posed by America’s reckless borrowing—a danger not just to its own economy, but to the very fabric of the global financial system. Against the backdrop of the “longest stretch of sub-4% unemployment in half a century,” the article lays bare the gravity of the situation, detailing how unusual high budget deficits and soaring debt levels have become.

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Secretary of State Antony Blinken has blamed social media and TikTok for Israel losing the PR war in Gaza.

While speaking before the McCain Institute on Friday, Blinken lamented that social media is allowing the world to see "the inescapable reality of people who have and continue to suffer grievously in Gaza," whereas in the past the "information environment" was controlled by a few newspapers and TV outlets who could shape the narrative. 

Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT), who was interviewing Blinken, concurred and added that the US banning TikTok is being done to help Israel in their PR war.

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A $100 million air base in Niger, which reportedly is a key player in drone warfare, has been taken over by the Russians without firing a shot. See story below from Reuters, and video providing further analysis breaking down this humiliating development for the U.S. military. This all went down on the invitation of the military government in Niger, which kicked the French out of their country last year. The US took over the base and now they’ve thrown them out. When can you ever remember Russian troops taking over a U.S. air base anywhere in the world? And where is the mainstream media other than a few small articles on the back page? They don’t want us to know about this, not the full implications. The U.S. is getting its clock cleaned right now by Russia, both economically and militarily. Expect the U.S. to lash out soon with another attack inside Russia. We are witnessing the actions of a collapsing empire and no empire goes down without a fight. I expect full on World War III by late 2024 or early 2025.

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It is just as I said, and Putin’s inability to recognize reality and endlessly prolonging the conflict in Ukraine is bringing Russia and the world more trouble.

Putin’s dithering has now brought the French Foreign Legion to the front lines in Ukraine, and western Ukraine is accumulating NATO troops. As I have emphasized from the beginning, wars need to be quickly won, not extended indefinitely.

Putin pretends he is engaged in a limited military operation when in fact he is at war with the West.

The limited operation has spun out of control precisely as I said it would. Now there are Western troops and intelligence services involved, and Russia has to defend against long-range missiles striking deep into Russia while Washington schemes to open a second front against Russia and to separate China from Russia. Utter disaster will be the consequence of Putin’s refusal to win the war. Putin’s dithering has greatly expanded NATO on Russia’s borders with the addition of Finland and Sweden and allowed NATO to plan for war with Russia just as Putin’s dithering over Donbas provided the US with eight years to create a large Ukrainian army. Consequently, Russia’s self-defense now requires the use of nuclear weapons. There is no sign of the West coming to its senses. Putin is relying on a chimera.

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I did my internal medicine residency at the University of Washington in Seattle. In the 1980’s it was the most competitive internal medicine training program in the country as more medical students ranked it #1 on their list than all others. One great privilege of the program was to work with the Seattle King County elite “MEDIC ONE” paramedic units which led the way on out-of-hospital resuscitation research. The Seattle King County cardiac arrest statistics are among the most accurate in the United States.

It is well known that COVID-19 vaccine myocarditis is asymptomatic in about half of victims and that cardiac arrest is a common initial presentation even years after injection. Hulscher et al have shown when autopsies are performed in the vaccinated, suspected myocarditis is confirmed to be the cause of death. Sadly, in these cases there is no chance for antecedent screening, detection, or management.

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According to the Department of Justice, the congressman was charged alongside Imelda with participation in two alleged schemes involving bribery, money laundering and unlawful foreign influence.

The Cuellars are accused of taking almost $600,000 in bribes from an oil and gas company owned and controlled by the government of Azerbaijan and a bank headquartered in Mexico city.

“The bribe payments were laundered, pursuant to sham consulting contracts, through a series of front companies and middlemen into shell companies owned by Imelda Cuellar,” prosecutors said.

Cuellar allegedly used his office as the Ranking Member on the Homeland Security Appropriations Subcommittee to influence U.S. foreign policy to favor Azerbaijan in exchange for the bribes he received.

“In exchange for the bribes paid by the Mexican bank, Congressman Cuellar allegedly agreed to influence legislative activity and to advise and pressure high-ranking U.S. Executive Branch officials regarding measures beneficial to the bank,” prosecutors said.

Cuellar denied the accusations in his statement on Friday, saying, “I want to be clear that both my wife and I are innocent of these allegations. Everything I have done in Congress has been to serve the people of South Texas.”

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Democratic Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s case against former President Donald Trump may be heading for the rocks, according to a panel of legal commentators on CNN.

The former president’s ongoing criminal trial has been front, back and center of the national discussion in recent weeks. Several witnesses, including former National Enquirer publisher David Pecker, have testified in the ongoing case. However, testimonies of those witnesses have failed to establish any direct link of wrongdoing against Trump, according to the CNN panel.

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The initial group of French troops numbers around 100. This is just the first tranche of around 1,500 French Foreign Legion soldiers scheduled to arrive in Ukraine.

These troops are being posted directly in a hot combat area and are intended to help the Ukrainians resist Russian advances in Donbas. The first 100 are artillery and surveillance specialists.

For months French President Emanuel Macron has been threatening to send French troops to Ukraine. He has found little or no support from NATO countries outside of support from Poland and the Baltic States. Allegedly the US opposes sending NATO soldiers to Ukraine (other than as advisors).

One of the questions to immediately arise from France’s decision to send soldiers from its 3rd Infantry Regiment is whether this crosses the Russian red line on NATO involvement in Ukraine? Will the Russians see this as initiating a wider war beyond Ukraine’s borders?

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The Federal Reserve is stuck between a rock and a hard place.  If the Fed pushes rates higher, interest payments on our 34 trillion dollar national debt could spin wildly out of control and bank balance sheets will be in even worse condition than they are now.  First Republic just bit the dust, and literally thousands of other small and mid-size banks and in serious jeopardy.  So it would be suicidal to hike rates at this point.  But if the Fed were to reduce rates, that would be like injecting jet fuel into a raging fire.  Our ongoing inflation crisis is absolutely crushing working families, and the rising cost of living has risen to the top of the list of things that U.S. voters are concerned about.  The Fed seems very hesitant to cut rates, because that would make inflation even worse.  So at this point the Fed is essentially caught in a “deer in the headlights” moment because it doesn’t know which way to go.

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A 10-billion-dollar bank was just shut down by U.S. regulators in the first big bank failure of 2024. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation announced the collapse of another major financial institution just a few days ago, the sixth of such kind over the last 12 months. The event has triggered fears of cascading bank failures, with economists warning about rising risks and mounting stress for almost 300 institutions. As economic uncertainty continues to weight on financial markets and add pressure on the commercial real estate sector, many banks that seem too big to fail are now facing unprecedented losses that could put them on a very destructive path, the experts say.

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