“We are apt to shut our eyes against a painful truth … For my part, whatever anguish of spirit it might cost, I am willing to know the whole truth; to know the worst, and to provide for it.” — Patrick Henry – March 23, 1775
Ukrainian soldiers are appalled by the rampant corruption among the state's top officials and the lack of interest of President Vladimir Zelensky to do anything about it, Politico reported with reference to Ukraine's ex-Minister of Infrastructure (2016-2019) Vladimir Omelyan who is currently an officer in the armed forces.
"We are furious that some of our leaders prefer to cheat and steal when we are dying on the battlefield. We believe that Zelensky should swap his camouflage for a tie and suit and analyze what is happening around him and his team," the publication quoted Omelyan as saying.
Numerous corruption scandals and cases of officials abusing their power are causing outrage among the Ukrainian people amid a record budget deficit of $38 billion planned for this year. Reports about the Defense Ministry taking a cut when purchasing food for the army, military equipment not being up to standards, unjustified spending by the Ministry of Culture, and local authorities embezzling money have drawn a lot of attention. This problem is also causing increasing discontent in the West, which is covering the budget deficit. Citing a government document in its possession, Politico reported on Monday that the administration of US President Joe Biden is seriously concerned about the level of corruption in Ukraine, something that may lead Western countries to refuse to provide aid to Kiev.
, which has been climbing this week following strong economic data. Rates have not been this high since the end of 2000.
At the beginning of this year, the 30-year fixed rate dropped to about 6%, causing a brief burst of activity in the spring housing market. But it began rising steadily again over the summer, causing sales to drop, despite strong demand. The current trend appears to be even higher, with the possibility of rates crossing over 8%.
Matt Gaetz on Tuesday night angrily denied that he had worked to unseat Kevin McCarthy in revenge for McCarthy failing to protect him.
Gaetz, 41, is facing a House Committee inquiry into allegations of sexual misconduct, use of illegal drugs, and misuse of funds.
Gaetz has argued that the two-year, wide-ranging inquiry into his conduct is the work of McCarthy and his allies, who he argues are bent on smearing him.
A parallel investigation by the Justice Department into allegations of sex trafficking and sex with a minor was dropped in February, when prosecutors concluded they did not have enough evidence to bring charges.
Martina Navratilova last night slammed a video of Interior Secretary Deb Haaland speaking with drag queen Pattie Gonia at New York City's Stonewall monument as 'a joke' and a 'pathetic parody of women'.
The tennis legend, who has long been seen as a symbol for gay and lesbian rights, hit out in response to the video posted by the Interior Secretary's official social media account for LGBT History Month.
In it, Haaland is seen asking the drag queen, who is sporting a park ranger's shirt, miniskirt and knee-high boots, about the importance of the Stonewall Monument.
'I think it's because queer rights are more under attack than ever,' Gonia said.
'At a place like Stonewall, this beautiful place, it's a place where so much discrimination and hatred occurred against the queer community, but it's also a place where resistance and queer joy and queer liberation happened.
'I think that is worth celebrating and commemorating. So, I think that we need to not ignore hate as it exists today. We need to acknowledge it because it's not just our past, but it's our present.'
A Qatari official said Doha could potentially host diplomats from Russia and Ukraine for negotiations aimed at ending the war. Qatar recently played a crucial role in brokering the release of American prisoners in Iran.
In an interview with Newsweek, Qatari diplomat Mohammed bin Abdulaziz Al Khulaifi said Doha could play a role in ending the war in Ukraine. “If asked to mediate in the Ukraine conflict, we would of course be ready to work towards facilitating dialogue and achieving peace in Europe.”
“This is desperately needed,” he stated. “In fact, Qatar supports any and all constructive dialogue and negotiations that could lead to an end of the conflict. As has been our position from the beginning, we continue to call for an immediate cessation of military action in Ukraine.”
Before the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the Kremlin offered the White House a proposal that included ending NATO expansion to avert the conflict. The Joe Biden administration declined to engage Russian President Vladimir Putin on several of Moscow’s key negotiation points.
The House on Tuesday voted to remove Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) as speaker, marking the first time in history a House speaker was removed through a resolution to oust them.
The effort was launched on Monday by Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL), who introduced a privileged resolution to vacate the speakership after accusing McCarthy of cutting a secret side deal with President Biden on Ukraine aid.
Since a handful of Republicans supported Gaetz’s maneuver, McCarthy needed some Democrats to support him to survive, but none did. The final vote was 216-210, with eight Republicans and every Democrat voting to remove McCarthy.
There’s no clear nominee to replace McCarthy, but in the meantime, according to CNN, Rep. Patrick McHenry (R-NC) will serve as interim speaker.
Gaetz had long been threatening to launch an effort to remove McCarthy. His decision to go through with the motion came in response to the stopgap funding bill that was passed by the House on Saturday and signed by President Biden to avert a government shutdown.
Russia has no plans for an additional mobilisation of men to fight in Ukraine as more than 335,000 have signed up so far this year to fight in the armed forces or voluntary units, Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu said on Tuesday.
Russia has been bolstering its armed forces and ramping up weapons production in the expectation of a long war in Ukraine, where front lines have barely shifted for a year.
"There are no plans for an additional mobilisation," Shoigu was shown telling top generals on state television. "The armed forces have the necessary number of military personnel to conduct the special military operation."
Shoigu, an ally of President Vladimir Putin, hailed the patriotism of those who had signed up.
JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon has warned Americans could soon be facing 7 percent interest rates - the highest level since 1990.
In a new interview, Dimon said the US needed to prepare for further rate hikes - adding his own bank was prepared for them to go as high as 8 percent.
The stark warning is at odds with most analysts' predictions that the Federal Reserve will likely only raise rates one more time this year by 0.25 percentage points. Currently the Fed's funds rate is hovering between 5.25 and 5.5 percent.
When asked if it could reach 7 percent, Dimon told Bloomberg TV: 'Yeah, it's possible. When I talk to my board I say 'can it go to 7%?' Yes.
'Are there factors that would drive it higher than it is today? Yes.'
The study is from early 2022 and is based on Ukrainian casualty numbers from only the very first month of the war. Their worst case scenario was this:
Our third and fourth scenarios assume that the war will continue for a month or longer so that further casualties and refugees are expected. We assume the following casualties: 5,000 deaths among soldiers and 1,500 civilian deaths based on the current trends. There will be 5 million refugees, which is an estimate by UNHCR (UNHCR 2022a)
The real refugee numbers are twice as high and the casualty numbers, wounded and dead, are of course about 100 times higher than the study assumed. It was thus not worth the money that had been spend on it.
Still, some graphs in it are usable.
Yesterday I shortly discussed the op-ed by the former British Minister of Defense Ben Wallace in which he asserts:
The average age of the soldiers at the front is over 40.
NBC News and the Associated Press on Tuesday reported glowingly on the news that right-wing writer and commentator Alain Soral was sentenced to prison in Switzerland for calling a journalist a "fat lesbian" two years ago on Facebook.
More than 1,600 leading scientists from around the world have signed a “World Climate Declaration” stating there is “no climate emergency.” Calling themselves the Global Climate Intelligence Group, scientists from around the world, including Nobel Laureate Professor John F. Clauser from the United States and Nobel Laureate Professor Ivar Giaever from Norway, signed onto a letter claiming there is no climate emergency in contrast to a narrative portrayed by popular mainstream media. Climatologists, meteorologists, geologists, engineers, and physicists from a wide range of Universities, private, public, and government entities, including NASA, the USDA, and the U.S. Navy, signed onto the document which can be read in its entirety here: There is No Climate Emergency.
“Climate science should be less political, while climate policies should be more scientific. Scientists should openly address uncertainties and exaggerations in their predictions of global warming, while politicians should dispassionately count the real costs as well as the imagined benefits of their policy measures,” the letter said.
Newly declassified British files shed disturbing light on the origins and internal workings of Operation Gladio, a covert NATO plot deploying fascist terror militias across Italy. Have spies in London applied these lessons in Ukraine?
Newly declassified British Foreign Office files have added disturbing details to the history of Operation Gladio. The covert operation was uncovered in 1990, when the public learned that the CIA, MI6 and NATO trained and directed an underground army of fascist paramilitary units across Europe, deploying its assets to undermine political opponents, including through false flag terror attacks.
Among them was a young Silvio Berlusconi, the media oligarch who served as Italian Prime Minister in four separate governments between 1994 and 2011. Listed as a member of the P2, the secret Cold War-era cabal of political elites devoted to Gladio’s aims, Berlusconi undoubtedly took some weighty secrets to the grave when he died this June 12th.
New York socialists calling for higher taxes aim to spread the tax net far beyond Wall Street, scooping up folks on Main Street—especially in the suburbs.
Bemoaning “violent budget cuts” at New York City agencies, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and her ideological allies are calling on the city and state to “fund resources for all New Yorkers” by raising taxes on the top 5% of New Yorkers. Considering the left’s prior focus on “the 1%,” this is a major development.
The top 1% of New Yorkers begins just south of $1 million in adjusted gross income. But the top 5% begins a little above $250,000—translating into married couples making $127,000 each.
The bankers have once again screwed the pooch financially, meaning another world war is soon on the way.
The trillions they have stolen from society via their money-printing press, the corrupt stock market, and "aid" to Ukraine means the economy system is once again on the verge of a collapse, which always mean war is soon to come as cover.
Both major political parties, "blue" and "red," have become pro-war because war is the pillar of American society. Without endless violence and bloodshed, all that "prosperity" would cease to exist.
"War is a racket," stated Smedley D. Butler back in 1935 after fighting in four major conflicts.
"It is possibly the oldest, easily the most profitable, surely the most vicious. It is the only one international in scope. It is the only one in which the profits are reckoned in dollars and the losses in lives."
The problem today, though, is that Americans are tired of sending their children off to die for the bankers. This means the bankers through their political puppets could attempt to institute a draft.
Scores of Israeli settlers stormed Jerusalem’s Al-Aqsa Mosque on Tuesday under police escort, the Palestinian Authority’s official Wafa news agency reported.
More than 200 settlers entered the compound and performed Jewish rituals in front of the Bab al-Qattanin gate, a source at the Islamic Endowments Department told The New Arab’s Arabic-language sister site Al-Araby Al-Jadeed. The settlers were led by far-right extremist rabbi Yehuda Glick.
Settlers also provocatively marched through Palestinian neighbourhoods near to the mosque.
Jewish extremists have increasingly tried to storm the mosque in recent months, performing provocative religious rites there in violation of a long-standing status quo, which while allowing non-Muslims to visit the site, only permits Muslim prayer there.
Israeli authorities prevented British Foreign Secretary James Cleverly from visiting a Palestinian village that was recently emptied of its residents after years of Israeli settler violence, Middle East Eye can reveal.
Cleverly had planned to visit the West Bank village of Ein Samiya during his three-day trip to Israel and the Palestinian territories in September, but multiple sources told MEE that Israeli authorities blocked the request, with Norwegian Foreign Minister Anniken Huitfeldt and Irish Foreign Minister Micheal Martin also prevented from travelling to the stricken village.
An Israeli foreign ministry spokesman told MEE on Tuesday that Israeli authorities "did not enable the British foreign minister to enter Ein Samiya, as well as the foreign minister of Norway and the foreign minister of Ireland."
He explained that "the decision was made in consultation with security figures and it was decided not to permit them to arrive at these points.
Food shortages, power cuts and a collapsing currency are upending daily life in Yemen as peace talks make no headway in restoring a ceasefire that lapsed one year ago, around 50 NGOs said late Monday.
"While economic challenges are rife across the country, rising inflation and the deterioration of public services are making life unbearable," said a statement signed by 35 Yemeni groups and 13 international aid organisations including the Danish Refugee Council and Save the Children.
That is especially true "for hundreds of thousands of families" in territory controlled by the internationally recognised government based in the main southern city of Aden, the statement said.
Power cuts in Aden can last 17 hours a day and more than 50 percent of households in government-held areas cannot meet basic food requirements because of skyrocketing prices, the statement said.
The Belarusian Defence Ministry said on Tuesday it had started exercises to check its armed forces' combat readiness.
"The troops will march as soon as possible to the designated areas, followed by the performance of normative standards on the subjects of combat training," the ministry said. It did not specify when the exercises would end.
The manoeuvres will take place in the Minsk and Vitebsk regions and will involve military hardware and aviation.
Military drills in Belarus, which allowed Russia to use its territory as a staging post for its invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, periodically raise security concerns in Ukraine, Poland and the Baltic states.
Serbian police on Tuesday detained an ethnic Serb leader from Kosovo who was the alleged organizer behind a recent shootout with Kosovo police that left four people dead and sent tensions soaring in the region.
Police said they also searched the apartment and other property in Serbia belonging to Milan Radoicic, a politician and wealthy businessman with close ties to Serbia’s ruling populist party and President Aleksandar Vucic.
Police gave no other details. A statement said Radoicic was ordered to remain in custody for 48 hours.
Later on Tuesday, prosecutors said Radoicic was questioned under suspicion of a criminal conspiracy, unlawful possession of weapons and explosives and grave acts against public safety.
Europe should reduce its reliance on the U.S. and strengthen the European pillar of NATO instead, Czech President Petr Pavel said Tuesday.
“The dominant role of NATO as a security provider must no longer mean that Europe neglects its defense obligations,” said Pavel, speaking at the opening ceremony of the new academic year at the College of Europe in Bruges. “Reducing the reliance on the U.S. and developing European strategic enablers is to be seen as our contribution to our transatlantic partnership.
“Very likely, we will have to go beyond the 2 percent spending on defense,” he noted.
NATO allies agreed at the Vilnius summit in July that the target, in the words of Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, should be treated as a floor instead of a ceiling.
A military court sentenced a Congolese military colonel to death and convicted three soldiers following the deaths of more than 50 people who were protesting the U.N. peacekeeping mission earlier this year.
Col. Mike Mikombe, former commander of the Republican Guard in the eastern city of Goma, was sentenced Monday. Congo has not enforced the death penalty in more than 20 years, effectively making it a life sentence.
Three other second-class soldiers from the same unit were sentenced to 10 years in prison. Two other officers were acquitted, including Col. Donat Bawili, who headed the Congolese armed forces regiment in Goma at the time.
In August, Goma’s mayor had banned a protest organized by a sect known as Wazalendo. Its supporters planned to demonstrate against the regional East African Community organization and the United Nations peacekeeping mission in Congo.
Islamist militants in Mali began a blockade of Timbuktu by cutting road access in August and then shut off river and air routes in an offensive that has put the city once again on the frontline of a jihadist insurgency.
The bombing began soon after. On Sept. 21, witnesses said rockets hit a hospital, killing two children, and landed near a school where survivors of a passenger boat attack that killed more than 100 people were sheltering.
"Our worry is the shelling," businessman Sory Touré said in Timbuktu, which was occupied by jihadists a decade ago. "It creates a real psychosis and leaves a lasting impression. I have this fear within me."
Since the United Nations began winding down its peacekeeping mission in July, al Qaeda affiliated militants launched an offensive in central Mali, fighting has resumed between the army and Tuareg rebels from the north and, in the east, Islamic State-allied insurgents have continued to carry out attacks.
The Army wants as many as one-third of its future enlisted recruits to have college degrees and plans to create two new jobs — one enlisted, one warrant officer — to keep high-performing recruiters looking for them, Army Secretary Christine Wormuth said Tuesday.
As the Army faces recruiting challenges, the service is also going through “a moment of transformation” with potential changes to the entire force structure and overall modernization, Wormuth said in a roundtable with reporters.
“There are a lot of things happening that are outside of the United States Army’s ability to control: the declining percentage of young Americans who are eligible to join the military, the declining propensity,” Wormuth said. “What we’ve really tried to focus on since this is an existential issue for us is, what can we change right now?”
The Pentagon’s 2024 budget calls for funding bumps for recruiting and advertising by hundreds of millions and calls for a DOD report on efforts to expand military eligibility “by eliminating unnecessary disqualifying standards and modifying the recruitment standards and waiver process.”
Webmaster addition: Why would anyone with a college degree want to join the Army?!?
India has told Canada to remove 41 of its 62 diplomats in the country, an official familiar with the matter said Tuesday, ramping up a confrontation between the two countries over Canadian accusations that India may have been involved in the killing of a Sikh separatist leader in suburban Vancouver.
The official, who confirmed an earlier report from the Financial Times, spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly.
India’s Ministry of External Affairs declined to comment, but ministry spokesperson Arindam Bagchi had previously called for a reduction in Canadian diplomats in India, saying they outnumbered India’s staffing in Canada.
Pakistan on Tuesday ordered all illegal immigrants, including 1.73 million Afghan nationals, to leave the country or face expulsion after revealing that 14 of 24 suicide bombings in the country this year were carried out by Afghan nationals.
It was not immediately clear how Pakistani authorities could ensure the illegal immigrants leave, or how they could find them to expel them.
Islamabad's announcement marks a new low in its relations with Kabul that deteriorated after border clashes between the South Asian neighbours last month.
"We have given them a November 1 deadline," said Interior Minister Sarfraz Bugti, adding that all illegal immigrants should leave voluntarily or face forcible expulsion after that date.