"Today, every inhabitant of this planet must contemplate the day when this planet may no longer be habitable. Every man, woman, and child lives under a nuclear sword of Damocles, hanging by the slenderest of threads, capable of being cut at any moment by accident or miscalculation or by madness." -- John F. Kennedy
Germany has become an economic satellite of America’s New Cold War with Russia, China and the rest of Eurasia. Germany and other NATO countries have been told to impose trade and investment sanctions upon themselves that will outlast today’s proxy war in Ukraine. U.S. President Biden and his State Department spokesmen have explained that Ukraine is just the opening arena in a much broader dynamic that is splitting the world into two opposing sets of economic alliances. This global fracture promises to be a ten- or twenty-year struggle to determine whether the world economy will be a unipolar U.S.-centered dollarized economy, or a multipolar, multi-currency world centered on the Eurasian heartland with mixed public/private economies.
President Biden has characterized this split as being between democracies and autocracies. The terminology is typical Orwellian double-speak. By “democracies” he means the U.S. and allied Western financial oligarchies. Their aim is to shift economic planning out of the hands of elected governments to Wall Street and other financial centers under U.S. control. U.S. diplomats use the International Monetary Fund and World Bank to demand privatization of the world’s infrastructure and dependency on U.S. technology, oil and food exports.
JUSTICE ALITO: Well, all right. I’ll try one more time. The district court found “a statistically significant and negative relationship between Asian American identity and the personal rating assigned by Harvard admissions officers.”
MR. WAXMAN [Harvard counsel]: That’s correct. And what she said is the record will not allow a full explanation of that because, if the — the — this — this — there is — there was no evidence with respect to what teachers said, what guidance counselors said, what these students wrote — wrote about. But what we can say with respect to the allegation of discrimination in this case, which was the — the — the definition of discrimination that was at issue in Bakke and Grutter and Fisher and which their expert, which their lawyer got up at opening statement and said: When we talk about discrimination in this case, we’re talking about discrimination in admissions outcomes. And here again, the district court found and the court of appeals also concluded that there was no evidence of discrimination in admissions outcomes against Asian Americans —
Beyond rushing deliveries of very costly and unproven air defense systems to Ukraine, Washington is doing next to nothing about Iran’s delivery of 3,500 drones to Russia for the war.
Russia has already fired off around 400 Iranian-made drones, mostly aimed at critical infrastructure targets in Ukraine including power plants, water pumping stations and dams. Combined with Russian cruise missiles, the drones and missiles have caused considerable damage.
Deliveries to Iran include the Shahed-129 (a Predator drone knock-off), the Mohajer-6 (built especially for the Iranian Revolutionary Guards and carrying two missiles) and loitering munition drones Arash-2 (allegedly designed to hit Tel Aviv and Haifa), Shahed-136 and Shahed-131.
The Pentagon’s new Nuclear Posture Review (NPR) says the US believes Iran is not pursuing a nuclear weapon, but Biden administration officials are still threatening military action against Tehran to prevent it from acquiring one.
The NPR was released last week and reads: “Iran does not today possess a nuclear weapon and we currently believe it is not pursuing one.”
The National Defense Strategy (NDS) that was released with the Nuclear Posture Review also acknowledges that Iran has not made a decision to build a nuclear bomb. It reads: “Iran is taking actions that would improve its ability to produce a nuclear weapon should it make the decision to do so.”
Despite the Pentagon’s conclusion, President Biden’s special envoy for Iran, Robert Malley, said this week that the US would use military action as a “last resort” to prevent Iran from acquiring a bomb.
“We will use other tools, and in last resort, a military option if necessary, to stop Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon,” Malley said.
Webmaster addition: Soooooo ... Iran isn't building a bomb, but Biden is going to threaten and sanction them anyway?
“We continue to monitor this as best we can, and we see no indications that Russia is making preparations for such use,” White House National Security Council spokesman John Kirby told reporters.
Citing unnamed US officials, The New York Times reported that senior Russian officials recently discussed when and how to use a nuclear weapon in Ukraine. The report isn’t confirmed, and Kirby declined to comment on the specifics.
Responding to the report, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Western media is “deliberately pumping up the topic of the use of nuclear weapons.” He said the Times report was “very irresponsible.”
Finnish Prime Minister Sanna Marin and her Swedish counterpart, Ulf Kristersson, made the comments during a joint press conference in Helsinki on Tuesday.
When asked if Finland would allow nuclear weapons, Marin said she didn’t want to “close any doors” and that there should not be “any preconditions” to Finland joining NATO.
Kristersson said that Sweden and Finland will “act jointly” on the issue of nuclear weapons as the two nations have sought NATO membership together. He said the Nordic countries should “embrace” all of NATO’s capabilities.
Separately on Tuesday, Micael Byden, the commander of Sweden’s armed forces, said Stockholm shouldn’t set any preconditions before joining NATO. “To draw red lines even before we’re becoming a member only creates obstacles and frictions,” he said.
In September, a highly revealing academic paper was published exposing the details of a previously hidden operation by Zionist militias during the 1948 Nakba (or “Catastrophe”), in which chemical and biological weapons were used to poison Palestinians, intervening Arab armies, and the citizens of neighboring states with typhoid, dysentery, malaria, and other diseases.
Working by stealth, Zionist militants poured vast quantities of infectious bacteria into wells and aqueducts providing villages, towns, and cities with water, in direct violation of the 1925 Geneva Protocol, which strictly prohibits “the use of bacteriological methods of warfare.”
The local epidemics created by this man-made disaster greatly assisted the forcible conquest of Palestinian territory by armed Jewish militias with their capture made permanent, while hindering the progress of advancing Arab armies.
The Biden administration’s policy toward the Russia-Ukraine war was built on the assumption of widespread international support for a coercive response to Russia’s invasion. Even during the early weeks of the conflict, however, there were indications that Washington’s belief was faulty. Biden’s boast that the world stood united in its opposition to Russia’s “aggression” was little more than wishful thinking. Barely a week after the onset of the war, there were extensive defections from a United Nations General Assembly vote calling for the withdrawal of Russian forces. In addition to the five nay votes, there were 35 abstentions—even though the resolution did not commit U.N. members to take any substantive action.
Most of the abstentions came from Africa and Asia, and the vote proved to be a harbinger of widespread indifference to the war, combined with tenacious opposition to Washington’s drive to isolate and punish Russia. As time passed, the problem only grew worse. Aside from NATO and longstanding U.S. allies in East Asia, the global map showed almost no support for economic sanctions against Russia, much less for economic and military backing for Ukraine.
During the early months of the war, NATO did appear to be reasonably united behind Washington’s policy—with some notable exceptions, such as Hungary and Turkey. The contrast between NATO’s perspective and the position that countries elsewhere in the world adopted was glaring. Hudson Institute scholar Walter Russell Mead provided an apt summary of Washington’s lack of success in broadening the anti‐Russia coalition beyond the network of traditional U.S. allies. “The West has never been more closely aligned. It has also rarely been more alone. Allies in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization plus Australia and Japan are united in revulsion against Vladimir Putin’s war and are cooperating with the most sweeping sanctions since World War II. The rest of the world, not so much.”
Biden’s Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre on Wednesday was asked why the White House deleted a tweet boasting of a massive Social Security increase after Joe Biden’s policies caused the inflation crisis.
Israeli Jewish Power party leader Itamar Ben-Gvir speaks in Jerusalem on Oct. 30. Photo: Ahmad Gharabli/AFP via Getty Images
The Biden administration is unlikely to engage with Jewish supremacist politician Itamar Ben-Gvir, who is expected to be a senior minister in a future Israeli government formed by Benjamin Netanyahu, two U.S. officials told Axios.
Why it matters: No official decision has been made yet, but if the Biden administration does boycott Ben-Gvir, it will mark an unprecedented development that would likely have negative consequences for the U.S.-Israeli relationship.
Israel's extreme right parties saw unprecedented success in Tuesday's election, with the Jewish supremacist Religious Zionism list set to win 14 seats — the highest number of seats for the radical right in the history of Israel.
Driving the news: Ben-Gvir, who was convicted in 2007 of supporting a terror organization and inciting racism, said he wants to be the minister of internal security, a post that would put him in charge of the Israeli police and policies around Jerusalem's holy sites, including the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound.
Elon Musk’s choice to recruit the far-left Twitter moderation council, which includes individuals who labeled President Trump a Nazi and called to be silenced when he was sitting President of the United States, has left many conservatives disappointed and hopeless.
Nord Stream, the Gazprom-led operator of the Nord Stream 1 gas export pipeline from Russia to Germany, has discovered what it describes as two "technogenic craters" on the seabed next to the pipeline.
Nord Stream's announcement follows a mission into the Swedish maritime zone that the operator commissioned after reportedly receiving refusals from Sweden to share results of that country's its own initial investigation.
The two strings of Nord Stream 1 together with the first string of Nord Stream 2 were damaged by explosions near the Danish island of Bornholm in the Baltic Sea at the end of September, leading to the violent escape of highly pressurised gas to the sea surface.
"According to preliminary results of the damage site inspection, technogenic craters with a depth of three to five metres were found on the seabed at a distance of about 248 metres from each other," Nord Steam said.
Lebanon has secured "American guarantees" that its maritime border deal with Israel cannot be easily scrapped should Benjamin Netanyahu return to the Israeli prime minister's office, Beirut's chief negotiator said on Wednesday.
Israel and Lebanon struck a US-brokered sea border agreement last month that opens up potentially lucrative offshore gas fields.
The agreement was seen as a rare diplomatic breakthrough between two neighbours who are still technically in a state of war. It was reached at a time of renewed interest in Eastern Mediterranean energy, with European states scrambling for alternative gas suppliers following Russia's invasion of Ukraine.
But the deal’s fate has been thrown into doubt with Netanyahu appearing to be on the cusp of returning to power. The former Israeli prime minister has dismissed the agreement as an "illegal ploy", and vowed, in an interview with Israel's Army Radio on Monday, to "neutralise" it.
The people of Israel, worn out by five rounds of elections in just over three years, wanted a clear-cut result from the 1 November election, whatever the outcome.
And they got it: a resounding win for the ultra-nationalist, Jewish supremacist right, driven by the rising political heavyweight Itamar Ben-Gvir.
A new Israel has been born out of this election, one where the murky definition of the state as "Jewish-democratic", often questioned if possible, has been categorically decided: Jewish – yes; democratic – hardly.
The outcome of the results, although paving the way for a dramatic return to power for former prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, will have ramifications that go far beyond his personal victory.
The religious right-wing parties are the true winners, who together are set to eclipse Likud's once-unrivalled dominance of the right in Israel.
Gerald Celente: “What I am warning the people is they better wake up and do something to stop this madness. That the markets are at this level now is a total joke. Anybody that has a brain sees the real data and understands it. Look at the commercial real estate sector and the business sector. You have office occupancy rates in Europe at 46%, in America maybe at 50%, in New York City 45%. You are going to see a crash in the business and commercial real estate market unparalleled in history. This is real. People are not going back to work like they used to. Work at home is the new way. But they are not talking about this. All they say is, ‘Oh, airline travel is back up.’ Yeah but business travel isn’t. It’s not coming back. Not when you have office occupancy rates at this level. And only 30% of the dry cleaners went out of business. ‘Oh, they don’t count.’ All the businesses that depended on commuters coming into the city, ‘Oh no, don’t talk about that.’
Ahead of COP27, the ecologist Dr. Susan Crockford has launched a hard-hitting attack on the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the World Economic Forum (WEF), King Charles and Sir David Attenborough. The two men are said to “parrot WWF activist nonsense” that they naïvely accept as science. Dr. Crockford is an acknowledged zoology expert on polar bears, whose work on their recently growing Arctic populations has effectively removed them as a green poster story. She says it is clear that many of the goals of the WWF are shared by the WEF, and these complement the vision the King and Attenborough share for the future. “They all want a return to a world with fewer people that live meagre, circumscribed lives, while the rich carry on their jet-setting ways.”
Dr. Crockford writes that when the WWF began promoting itself as a scientific authority a dozen or so years ago, these “naïve elite boosters” accepted it without question, parroting unsubstantiated WWF climate doomsday talking points at every opportunity. In her view, these men don’t speak with an authority of their own on this topic, “they use their exalted positions to assist the WWF and others achieve their utopian dream: destroy for others the capitalism that created their own wealth and power”.
The U.S. State Department has approved the potential sale of guided multiple launch rocket systems and related equipment to Finland in a deal valued at an estimated cost of $535 million, the Pentagon said in a statement on Wednesday.
The principal contractor will be Lockheed Martin Corp, the Pentagon said.
"Finland intends to use these defense articles and services to increase its national stock, bolstering the land and air defense capabilities in Europe's northern flank," it said.
"The increased national stock is critical to Finland’s defense and deterrence due to the deteriorated security situation in Europe," the statement said.
Earlier in the day, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov announced plans to bring up Ukraine’s alleged efforts to stage a dirty bomb provocation up at the United Nations. On Sunday, Russia’s defense minister informed his NATO counterparts on the threat of a Ukrainian dirty bomb false flag attack. Kiev and its sponsors have dismissed the allegations.
The Russian military has information on contacts between Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky’s office and British representatives on the matter of nuclear weapons technology, Igor Kirillov, the head of Russia’s Radiation, Chemical and Biological Defense Troops, has revealed.
“We have information on contacts between the Ukrainian president’s office and representatives of Britain on the possible acquisition of nuclear weapon technology,” Kirillov said in a briefing Monday.
The senior officer echoed concerns voiced by Defense Minister Shoigu on Sunday – namely that Kiev was “planning a provocation involving the detonation of a so-called ‘dirty bomb’, or a low-yield nuclear weapon,” and then claiming that the explosion was caused by a Russian tactical nuclear weapon.
Earlier this year, Allies agreed to enhance NATO’s presence in the east of the Alliance by establishing four new multinational battlegroups in Bulgaria, Hungary, Romania and Slovakia (in addition to the existing battlegroups in Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland, which have been in place since 2017). Now, Allied troops are training together in these new battlegroups, demonstrating their ability and commitment to working together – come rain or come shine.
In a new piece, Teen Vogue gets the midterms factually wrong – which provides more disinformation than information in its attempt to “educate the influencers of tomorrow.”
Misinformation is being fed to readers here: “House terms are two years, and candidates can serve up to six terms.” No, the House is not term-limited. “A senator can serve two terms.” Nor is the Senate. The Presidency is term-limited, some governors are, some state legislatures, but not Congress.
We might also argue with this, concerning House and Senate: “Each state has representatives in these two groups.” Not really, no. It is indeed the state that is represented in the Senate but it’s actually the district that is represented in the House.
This is more confusing than actually entirely wrong:
“On the state level, there will be 36 governorships and 30 state attorney general offices on ballots. Of the 36 governorships, 20 of them are currently occupied by Republicans. Although these state positions might seem less important than congressional seats, winning a majority in these areas would allow Democrats to pursue liberal legislation outside of Washington, D.C.”
You’d want a majority of each state legislature, yes, but a majority of governors or attorneys general is irrelevant. Each one is the only one in each state, their sway holds over each single state only. What everyone else is doing is irrelevant to them.
With Joe Biden dragging his party down, Democrats have few stars to help their fading 2022 chances. Democrats in close races are staying far away from Joe Biden. But some candidates are particularly worried since they supported Joe Biden every step of the way.
That’s probably why they managed to dig up Barack Obama to help. The former president showed up at a rally to help an embattled Democrat who is fighting for re-election. Democrats have been leaning on Barry to salvage their midterm chances. But as soon as he mount the stage, they realized their scheme backfired.
From The Post Millennial:
As Obama was talking about stopping “dangerous” rhetoric ahead of the election, one man shouted “Mr. President! There’s more people that are going to get hurt if we go into nuclear war!”
“Right now, we’re on the verge of nuclear war thanks to what you did in Ukraine in 2014. Why won’t you tell the truth about what you did… in Ukraine in 2014?”
These people don’t just tell lies; they tell whoppers.
The latest is Democrat Senator Dick Durbin of Illinois, who tweeted “Free speech does not include spreading misinformation to downplay political violence.”
Let’s start with saying the First Amendment does not, in general, outlaw spreading of misinformation. We’ll come back to that in a moment.
Secondly, Durbin talks of downplaying political violence. That’s a reference to a comment made by new Twitter owner Elon Musk about the recent brutal attack on Paul Pelosi, husband of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
“In the days since Musk took Twitter private, the platform has seen an uptick in hate speech, and Musk himself used the platform and his influence to spread a baseless conspiracy theory about a violent attack on an elected official’s business,” Durbin tweeted.
In a tweet, Musk shared a link pushing unsubstantiated theories about the attack on Pelosi. Following heavy criticism, he removed the tweet.
The only hate speech surrounding the attack of which I am aware are claims by Democrats that former President Donald Trump broke into the Pelosi residence and personally attacked Paul Pelosi.
Okay, that’s an exaggeration – misinformation, if you will – but it makes a point about the tone Democrats have adopted in that they are repeating the claim that hate speech by Republicans prompted the attack on Pelosi.