The head of the Syrian Arab Red Crescent (SARC) on Tuesday called for the lifting of US and other Western economic sanctions on Syria following a massive earthquake that has killed over 7,000 people in Syria and Turkey.
“The evacuation process and rescue operations are restricted due to obstacles resulting from the severe sanctions,” said Khaled Hboubati, president of the SARC. He said the sanctions are preventing Syria from acquiring machinery needed to rescue people from the rubble.
“I mean specific machinery that lifts the rubble without injuring people trapped under the rubble. The economic sanctions imposed on our country is the main obstacle to getting this machinery,” Hboubati said.
“With this, we demand for the lifting of economic sanctions and the siege in order … to allow aid deliveries and humanitarian actions to be implemented by SARC and other bodies,” he said.
Matt Taibbi joins CN Live! to discuss the implications of his Twitter Files revelations, including his latest on Hamilton 68 and its fatal blow to the Russiagate narrative. With Chris Hedges and John Kiriakou. Watch the replay.
One of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's hard-right allies said on Tuesday Israel would not freeze Jewish settlement building in the occupied West Bank, a week after U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken pressed Israel to halt construction.
"There will be no construction freeze in Judea and Samaria period," a statement from Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich's Religious Zionism party said on Tuesday, using a term common in Israel for the West Bank.
Senior members of Netanyahu's far-right coalition have sought to further expand Jewish settlement in the West Bank, which was captured by Israel in a 1967 war and where Palestinians have long aimed to establish a state. Most world powers consider Israel's settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem as illegal.
On a visit to Israel and the Palestinian Territories last week, Blinken repeated U.S. calls for a two-state solution to the decades-long conflict between Israel and the Palestinians and called publicly for an end to settlement expansion.
According to Colonel Markus Reisner, the military strategist of the Austrian Ministry of Defence, Ukraine does not need NATO soldiers, as they are already there on the frontlines as mercenaries.
As reported by RIA Novosti, Reisner’s remark came in response to a question during a press conference at the AIES Institute. One of the journalists asked him who would be managing the proposed transfer of tanks to Ukraine – NATO servicemen or Ukrainians.
Reisner replied that if the military from Austria or NATO countries retired from service and became mercenaries, then they could no longer be considered representatives of the armies of their states.
He explained that the serviceman takes off his uniform, signs a contract and goes to Ukraine – now he is not a soldier, for example, of the Austrian armed forces, but a contract mercenary. In his opinion, there are a large number of mercenaries on the territory of Ukraine and not soldiers of the alliance.
A peace deal being pushed by powerful Western nations to resolve tensions between Serbia and Kosovo fails to address mutual recognition, which essentially means it would fail to achieve real progress, analysts have told Al Jazeera.
Among the provisions in the proposal touted by France, Germany and the United States, Serbia would not explicitly recognise Kosovo’s independence but would have to stop lobbying against its membership in international bodies, such as the United Nations.
ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt tore into comedian Joe Rogan on Tuesday for saying that "the idea that Jewish people are not into money is ridiculous" and "like saying Italians aren't into pizza!"
Joe Rogan on his podcast Saturday defended Rep. Ilhan Omar's (D-MN) tweet from 2019 saying that US political leaders support for Israel is driven by Jewish megadonors and is "all about the Benjamins baby."
Semiconductor chips are often compared to the beating heart driving technology innovation. But with the United States restricting exports of critical semiconductor components and technology to China, questions are mounting over how long the world's second largest economy can maintain a pulse.
Core technologies are China's Achilles' heel, despite having the world's strongest industrial manufacturing capability, and they are easy prey for Washington in its strategy of tech containment.
Without mastery of the fiendishly complex chips that power everything from cars to smartphones, President Xi Jinping's hopes of transforming China into the pre-eminent global digital power, while surpassing the US to become the No 1 economy in the world, could fall apart.
Do you have questions about the biggest topics and trends from around the world? Get the answers with SCMP Knowledge, our new platform of curated content with explainers, FAQs, analyses and infographics brought to you by our award-winning team.
Nikki Haley will reportedly announce the start of her campaign for the Republican presidential nomination on February 15, becoming the first GOP 2024 candidate after Donald Trump. Since it’s likely that Haley will emphasize foreign policy issues in pitching her candidacy, it’s worth examining her public record more closely to see what kind of foreign policy she thinks the U.S. should pursue.
There is no question that Haley is a long-shot contender for the nomination. Trump’s decision to seek renomination after his 2020 defeat has created an unusual situation for other potential candidates as they are faced with the prospect of having to compete with a former president. But as a former governor of South Carolina and ambassador to the United Nations under Trump, her presidential ambitions have been no secret – one of the main reasons why she went to work for Trump in 2017 was to further those ambitions.
Once hailed as one of the future leaders of the party, Haley is one of those Republican “rising stars” that hasn’t risen very far yet. Her 2016 endorsement of Marco Rubio ahead of the South Carolina primary was supposed to represent the dawn of a “new” Republican Party, but it turned out that Haley’s endorsement didn’t count for much in her home state. Now Haley is arguably too close to Trump to please his opponents, but she is also not enough of a loyalist to satisfy his core supporters. In trying to have things both ways for years, repeatedly switching between embracing and criticizing Trump, Haley has left herself with no obvious base of support. Like Marco Rubio, Haley will probably have a much bigger cheering section among hawkish policy intellectuals than she will among primary voters.
A Japanese court on Tuesday rejected a damage suit filed by a group of children of Hiroshima atomic bombing survivors seeking government support for medical costs, saying the hereditary impact of radiation exposure is still unknown.
A group of 28 plaintiffs whose parents suffered radiation exposure in the Aug. 6, 1945, U.S. atomic attack were demanding the central government include them in the medical support available to survivors.
The Hiroshima District Court said the possibility of a hereditary effect from radiation cannot be denied, but there is no established scientific consensus and the government’s exclusion of the plaintiffs from medical support is not unconstitutional.
The government has insisted there is no scientific evidence showing a hereditary effect from parents’ radiation exposure on their children.
The U.S. Space Force said a power surge during a lightning storm likely caused a mechanical issue that allowed about 700 gallons (2,750 liters) of diesel fuel to spill last week at the environmentally sensitive and culturally important summit of Haleakala mountain on Hawaii's Maui Island.
Brig. Gen. Anthony Mastalir, the commander of the U.S. Space Forces Indo-Pacific, said a team will take measurements to better understand the severity of the contamination. Mastalir said it's impossible to know right now how far the diesel fuel seeped into the ground.
The spill occurred at the Maui Space Surveillance Complex at the summit of Haleakala, 10,023 feet (3,055 meters) above sea level. The site hosts hosts the military’s largest optical telescope, which tracks satellites.
A pump that supplies fuel to a backup generator from a storage tank failed to shut off during a lightning storm Jan. 29, Mastalir said at a news conference Monday, The Maui News reported. An alarm should have gone off to notify officials of a potential overflow, but didn't.
The only international aid corridor from Turkey into Syria has been disrupted because of earthquake damage, compounding an already dire humanitarian situation and laying the groundwork for potential wrangling between the Syrian government and the international community.
“It’s chaos. We are not able to rely on anything cross border right now,” Amany Qaddour, regional director of Syria Relief and Development, a US-based non-profit, told Middle East Eye.
Two earthquakes with an epicentre in Turkey have so far killed more than 7,200 people and left a trail of destruction across a wide area of southern Turkey and neighbouring Syria.
Tens of thousands have been injured or left homeless in cities in Turkey and northern Syria. The overall number of people affected by the earthquakes in Turkey and Syria could be 23 million or higher, according to preliminary assessments by the World Health Organisation (WHO).
International aid for Syria has begun pouring into the country following a powerful earthquake on 6 February that devastated the country’s northwest region and left at least 1,444 dead.
In the early hours of 7 February, the first Iranian plane carrying humanitarian aid landed at Damascus International Airport, as the Iranian ambassador to Syria confirmed Tehran would send more planes carrying aid relief.
Other states from West Asia and North Africa that have already delivered aid to Syria include Iraq, Jordan, Bahrain, the UAE, Algeria, Egypt, and Tunisia.
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi also held a phone conversation with his Syrian counterpart in which he expressed “his sincere condolences for the victims of the devastating earthquake” and reaffirmed Cairo’s solidarity with Damascus. The Egyptian leader also directed officials “to provide all possible aid and relief assistance.”
On Tuesday, Lebanon announced it was sending structural engineers, soldiers, paramedics, and handlers with trained search dogs to the neighboring country, hours after a 100-strong Algerian civil protection team arrived in Aleppo.
Webmaster addition: Good for them. In the face of natural disasters of such scale, it is appropriate to set aside the petty political squabbles and help our fellow human beings.
Turkey’s energy infrastructure has suffered severe damage from the two earthquakes that shook Turkey and neighbor Syria yesterday, killing more than 3,000 people, according to the country’s government.
The first 7.7-magnitude quake damaged a big port on the Mediterranean, Turkey’s Energy and Natural Resources Minister Fatih Donmez said, as quoted by news agencies, and later in the day, a fire broke out at the same port.
Operations at the Ceyhan oil terminal were halted as a result of the quake but Turkey’s oil pipelines—Kirkuk-Ceyhan and Balku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan—were undamaged.
Despite the fact that the oil pipelines are intact, there could be delays to operations at the Ceyhan oil terminal, the endpoint of the Kirkuk-Ceyhan pipeline, a major export line from Kirkuk in Iraq.
What’s more, the Kurdistan Regional Government said it had suspended flows along the Kirkuk-Ceyhan pipeline in the wake of the quake.
Now age 29, Elian Gonzalez has grown up from the child whose 1999 family crisis became the unwitting symbol for the breakdown of Washington-Havana relations to this week becoming a candidate for a seat in Cuba's parliament.
State newspaper Granma on Monday released the list of the 470 candidates running for a spot in the upcoming session of the National Assembly of People's Power, which included Gonzalez, who is currently an executive at a public company.
Gonzalez first gained international notoriety when on Thanksgiving Day 1999 fishermen rescued the five-year-old from a flimsy boat floating between Cuba and Florida after his mother and 10 others had died while trying to reach the United States.
Seen by many as the youth candidate, Gonzalez is running to represent Cardenas, a city 135 kilometers (84 miles) east of Havana.
Candidates were submitted by municipal delegates last week, while voters will have the chance to approve or reject the choices in late March.
There is a strong possibility of Moldova becoming a conflict hotspot so that the West can maintain maximum pressure on Russia’s periphery and bog the country down in more war. This comes as Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told the media that the West now has its “eyes” on Moldova and that Moldovan President Maia Sandu is ready to act on any instructions that she receives.
The possibility of Moldova becoming a major European flashpoint has always existed because the Transnistrian conflict has been frozen since July 1992.
If Moldova, in the eyes of officials, becomes even more pro-Western and integrated into Romania, the more likely is that Transnistrians will resolve their right for sovereignty by force. This would turn Moldova into the “next Ukraine”, which will surely see indirect international intervention, and perhaps a direct Russian intervention. Moscow has the ability to support Transnistria, including with financial, diplomatic and military methods to resolve the conflict, and will not hesitate to do so if new provocations emanate from Moldova.
Transnistria, where 60% of the inhabitants are Russian and Ukrainian, had sought to secede from Moldova even before the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, fearing that Moldova would join Romania in the face of post-communist nationalism. In 1992, after the Moldovan government failed to resolve the issue by force, Transnistria became an unrecognised territory outside of Chisinau’s control.
After the Russiagate Hoax, the Covid hoax, and the Insurrection hoax, We now Have the Chinese Spy Balloon Hoax
According to Washington and the whore media, China sent a balloon that the Pentagon said “could” be loaded with explosives to spy on America. A top general said that similar balloons have entered US airspace undetected before. The balloon is huge–200 feet tall weighing in excess of a couple thousand pounds. So if such a large object can enter our airspace undetected, does this mean far smaller ICBMs can also?
Do understand that what is going on here is the purposeful creation of an incident for propaganda purposes to stoke up more animosity against China, and to spend more money on defense in Asia. We don’t have a Malaysian airliner to blame on China, but we do have a weather balloon.
Corporations like Nestlé are essentially doomsday machines: man-made creations that will ultimately destroy humanity if allowed to continue as they are. Multinational corporations are required by law to place the financial interests of shareholders above all other matters, even if that requires them to prioritize the bottom line above the common good. In this nightmare of our own creation, if it is more cost-effective for corporations to commit mass atrocities and pay a fine, than to not commit atrocities, the corporation is compelled to commit atrocities to ensure shareholder returns.
Further, this maximization of profit through unhinged business practices and investment tactics creates a cycle of destruction further fed by governments and institutions relaxing rules to entice companies to do business in ways that financially benefit that government. This enables the businesses to create more profit by cutting corners around labor rights, safety protections, and environmental standards. As negligence is further normalized, governments must entice businesses with more concessions, which encourages even worse behavior from corporations. Governments and business then race each other to the bottom in a destructive spiral that harms everyone.
In the Unites States, corporations claim a legal status as if they were human beings. While this is a fictional concept, if the corporation Nestlé were a person—Nestlé would be the worst kind of person, someone you would never want to be in the same room with. Nestlé is the American Psycho of corporations.
Yet, a company like Nestlé only exists because of the acquiescence and facilitation of its gross misconduct by governments and society. This case study on Nestlé’s business practices highlights some of the most egregious behavior by corporations.
Too often in the permitted(or imposed) discourse, white superiority and white supremacy(or white supremacism) are conflated, confused as interchangeable, or as if superiority is the cause-and-effect of supremacy. In truth, one(superiority) is a condition, the other(supremacism) a contention. Many PC scolds and ‘woke’ tards argue that the West, Europe and America, gained world hegemony and domination over other races due to the ideology of white supremacism than through the industry of white superiority. Now, supremacy and superiority are partly interlinked. It’s natural for a people who gain superiority to believe they are somehow better(even innately) than others and reserve the right(and/or a responsibility) to rule over them. This rule could be ruthless and exploitative or conscientious and constructive — the Others’ burden or the burden for Others — , but in either case, it means dominion of one group over another.
While superiority all-too-often leads to feelings of supremacy, supremacism per se hardly guarantees superiority or domination. If anything, supremacist attitudes can lead to dissipation and downfall, as with the story of the hare that slacks off in the race with the tortoise. Or, exaggerated displays of supremacism could actually be therapeutic compensation for those plagued with inferiority-complex. (Mussolini’s Italian He-Man huff-and-puff neo-Roman fantasies were mostly that.) Of real importance is that attitude doesn’t translate into aptitude. White people with all the supremacist attitudes in the world couldn’t have gained domination without certain superior aptitudes resulting from genetic, cultural, historical, or material factors.
President Joe Biden delivered his second State of The Union address on Tuesday, claiming that Republicans want to 'sunset' Medicare and Social Security.
He started out his speech calling for 'unity,' as he asked to 'finish the job' of rebuilding the economy reeling from historic inflation and the pandemic. But it quickly turned tense with his dubious accusations against the GOP.
Wearing a white coat lined in white fur, conservative firebrand Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene stood up before the joint session of Congress and screamed 'liar' while other Republicans shouted, 'Not true!'
President Volodymyr Zelensky’s ex-patron, the has-been billionaire Ihor Kolomoisky (Privat group), is the target of a sweeping investigation conducted by the Ukrainian Security Services (SBU). He is charged with siphoning off 40 billion hryvnias (around $1 billion) for his own gain when his energy companies, Ukrnafta and Ukrtatnafta, were nationalized in November 2022.
In 2010, Ihor Kolomoisky tried to seize control of the European Council of Jewish Communities, but had to back down when faced with the defiance of European Jewish leaders who denounced his mafia background. After the 2014 coup, he financed the “integral nationalist” armed groups, including the Aidar, Donbass, Dnipro 1 and Dnepr 227 battalions. In the 2020s, he was the major sponsor of President Volodymyr Zelensky and his party, Servant of the People. He was the owner of Burisma Holding, the company which added President Joe Biden’s son, Hunter Biden, and former State Secretary John Kerry’s stepson, Devon Archer, to its payroll as board directors .
A five-year-old child was pulled from the rubble in southeastern Turkey’s Hatay province on Wednesday, 52 hours after the devastating earthquake that hit the region, the Sabah newspaper reported.
The girl was pulled out by rescuers. She is reportedly uninjured after a house collapsed around her. She was carried out on a stretcher to an ambulance and then taken to the nearest hospital.
A one-year-old child was also rescued from the ruins in southeastern Turkey’s Hatay province on Wednesday night, 36 hours after the initial earthquake, TRT TV reported.
The boy, named Ali Aras, was pulled out by rescue crews. He is said to not have sustained any injuries as a result of a house that collapsed.
At the outset of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, Refresco — a transnational corporation that produces and bottles soft drinks for major brands such as Tropicana and Gatorade — had a single response to its staff about the public health crisis unfolding at its Wharton, NJ plant an hour outside of New York City: show up to work.
According to the workers at the plant and their union, employees exposed to the virus were denied time off, the factory remained open despite a broader economic shutdown, on top of the 12-hour shifts the company required. (Workers say the company used the pandemic to justify longer shifts, while Refresco claims the new policy went into place prior to the emergence of COVID-19). Outraged, the predominantly immigrant workforce formed a union, winning their first election in June 2021 in what was one of the largest blue-collar union victories during the pandemic.
One year later, New York-based private equity megafirm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co., also known as KKR & Co., became a majority owner of the company. Now, workers claim that under KKR’s control, Refresco has been dragging its feet on negotiating a first contract with the union and pushing for draconian provisions such as only allowing workers to take weekends off once every eight weeks. KKR’s business model, meanwhile, depends on the pension funds of unionized teachers, firefighters, social workers, and bus drivers.
REPORTER: "How is it possible that this administration discovered at least three previous balloons that flew over the US under the previous administration, but Trump officials didn't know it was happening?" KJP: "Yeah, so, look, I think that uh, and we have talked about this..."