"The Chinese are universally conceded to be excellent people, honest, honorable, industrious, trustworthy, kind-hearted, and all that--leave them alone, they are plenty good enough just as they are; and besides, almost every convert runs a risk of catching our civilization. We ought to be careful. We ought to think twice before we encourage a risk like that; for, once civilized, China can never be uncivilized again. We have not been thinking of that." -- Mark Twain

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The FBI has restarted its investigation into WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age reported on Thursday.

According to a front-page story in the SMH, the FBI is looking to build its case up against Assange, who was indicted by the US Justice Department in 2019 for exposing US war crimes by publishing classified documents he obtained from a source, a standard journalistic practice.

The report said that last week, the FBI contacted Andrew O’Hagan, a Scottish novelist who worked as a ghostwriter for Assange’s autobiography. O’Hagan rejected the FBI request as he opposes the US’s efforts to imprison Assange for his journalism.

“I would not give a witness statement against a fellow journalist being pursued for telling the truth,” O’Hagan said. “I would happily go to jail before agreeing in any way to support the American security establishment in this cynical effort.”

Assange’s legal team was surprised by the FBI request, which came amid building pressure on the Biden administration to drop the charges against the WikiLeaks founder. A delegation of Australian lawmakers recently met with the US ambassador to Australia and called on Washington to free Assange, who has been held in London’s Belmarsh Prison since the indictment.

Posted on: Jun 02 08:32

On Dec. 24, 2022 Matt Taibbi was in a room at the Parc 55 Hotel in San Francisco poring through reports sent to Twitter from an entity called the Foreign Influence Task Force (FITF). The FITF is an FBI-led interagency task force that forwards “moderation requests” from numerous government agencies, including Homeland Security, the CIA, the Pentagon and the State Department, to social media outlets. Taibbi was given access to the internal traffic by Twitter’s new owner, Elon Musk. It revealed how the FBI and other government agencies routinely suppressed news and commentary. He published a Twitter thread that night, Christmas Eve, with the headline “Twitter and Other Government Agencies”.

“There would be a list of YouTube videos,” Taibbi said when I reached him by phone. “There would be a notation that would say ‘We assess that these are all created by the Internet Research Agency in Russia. We assess that they are promoting anti-Ukraine attitudes.’ I would see that all those videos were no longer on YouTube. You can make your own deduction from that, but that was the pattern. They would send Excel spreadsheets full of account names and either all or most of them would be gone.”

The content that was suppressed included right-wing and left-wing reports critical of the dominant narrative advanced by the Democratic Party and the old establishment wing of the Republican Party, which has been folded into the Democratic Party. Threads from the Yellow Vests movement, activists from the Occupy movement, Global Revolution Live, negative stories about Joe Biden, reports on the Ukrainian energy company Burisma that paid Hunter Biden about $1 million a year while his father was vice-president, positive stories about Venezuelan president Nicolás Maduro, reports about Ukrainian human rights abuses and details of the contents of Hunter Biden’s laptop were part of the plethora of accounts that were flagged and disappeared. 

Posted on: Jun 02 08:32

The U.S. Army has said it is seeing an upward trend in recruiting but has refused to provide numbers to bolster the claim.

Army Secretary Christine Wormuth told Congress that the branch has improved upon its numbers from last year in its bid to reverse a severe recruiting crisis, but would not fulfill a request to provide the actual data when it was requested by Military.com

According to the outlet, requests to the Army for quarterly recruiting data were made in early April, and the branch has declined for weeks to be forthcoming with the numbers and has provided no reason for their refusal.

Posted on: Jun 02 08:31

In 2023, despite skyrocketing inflation and debt, as well as rising sociopolitical divisions, leadership among both Republicans and Democrats will always agree that substantially more US taxpayer money, never less, should be poured into the military-industrial complex, according to an analysis by journalist Judd Legum.

Case in point, the debt ceiling agreement established between the Joe Biden administration and House Speaker Kevin McCarthy caps military spending at a record $886 billion, exactly matching Biden’s mammoth budget request.

The GOP was seeking large increases in military spending and would only entertain cuts in non-military expenditures. The agreed upon war budget represents a 3.3% increase over the current year. The tentative deal still needs to make its way through Congress, where hawks will fiercely oppose any and all military spending caps.

Half of that money will go to defense contractors, with Raytheon, Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman and General Dynamics receiving the lion’s share. Some of those industry giants are currently ensnared in a massive “price gouging” scandal, with a bipartisan group of senators demanding an investigation at the Pentagon’s highest levels.

Posted on: Jun 02 08:30

US Assistant Secretary for Near Eastern Affairs, Barbara Leaf, on 31 May, threw cold water on reports by Israeli media that allege Saudi Arabia is close to normalizing ties with Tel Aviv.

“There’s a lot of misreporting and a lot of hyperventilation in the press, a lot of excitable rumint, I would say, in the press, especially in the Israeli press. They’re just electric with the idea that Saudi Arabia might take that step,” Leaf told a Senate Foreign Relations subcommittee on Wednesday.

Nonetheless, the senior US official stressed Washington sees “plenty of space to get things done.”

Earlier this week, Israel’s National Security Advisor Tzachi Hanegbi said during a radio interview that the far-right government in Tel Aviv is “in a fog” on any progress in talks between Riyadh and Washington over normalization.

“I say this to be as clear as I can within the framework of the fog that exists for us … We are not really aware, right now, of what is happening in the Saudi-American corridors,” the Israeli official said.

Posted on: Jun 02 08:29

As the sun sets over Taiwan’s Kinmen islands, the neon lights of mainland China dazzle in the distance just 2.5 miles away.

Yet as striking as the lights on the horizon are the reminders, everywhere, of war. Kinmen’s beaches are lined with anti-invasion spikes, its islands dotted with aging military posts, its streets home to countless bomb shelters – defenses prepared long ago for an invasion that never came. Or, at least, one that hasn’t come yet.

The shadow of war has hung over these islands ever since Taiwan and mainland China split at the end of the Chinese civil war in the late 1940s. Kinmen, a near and easy target for the mainland’s Communist forces, was bombarded with an estimated one million artillery shells in the years that followed.

Though active fighting ended in Kinmen in 1979, Beijing continues to claim self-governing Taiwan as its territory and recently has been making increasingly bellicose threats toward Taipei. As a consequence, many see the likelihood of war returning to these lands as higher now than it has been in decades.

Posted on: Jun 02 08:28

Geneva has banned an exhibition that highlights the suffering of Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails, just days before its scheduled start.

The exhibition was set to be held from May 25-27. It was a collaboration between the Palestinian prisoner solidarity network Samidoun and the Rouge secour organisation, a group that works to highlight the plight of political prisoners.

However, two days before the event was scheduled to be held, the head of the venue, the Almacen, contacted Samidoun and told them that the City of Geneva municipal authority had intervened to cancel the event.

Posted on: Jun 02 08:27

The Israeli parliament has advanced two bills that would bring Palestinian schools and staff in Israel under increased scrutiny from the security and intelligence services.

If passed, one of the bills proposed on Wednesday would require the education ministry to carry out background security checks on potential teachers.

The bill would authorise a committee, after conducting a hearing, to rescind the appointment of a teacher or dismiss a school staff member if they “identify with a terror organisation” or expressed support for the armed struggle of an enemy country.

It also requires potential teachers to prove they have no “affinity for terrorism".

The second bill sets stricter guidelines that would make obtaining a teaching licence much harder.

Posted on: Jun 02 08:27

The Palestinian Islamic Resistance Movement Hamas condemned on Wednesday Israel’s transformation of the ancient Palestinian historical site, the Citadel of Jerusalem, into a Jewish museum with the new name of the Tower of David Museum, the Middle East Monitor reported.

“Hamas condemns in the strongest possible terms the Israeli occupation’s decision to turn the Citadel of Jerusalem, an ancient fortress located near the Hebron Gate in the Old City of occupied Jerusalem, into the Tower of David Museum,” an official statement announced.

“Such a move has no legitimacy as it comes as part of the Israeli occupation’s strenuous effort to erase Jerusalem’s identity. Jerusalem will always remain an Arab and Islamic city,” the statement stressed.

Posted on: Jun 02 08:26

The Palestinian Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) Movement declared victory on Thursday in its years-long campaign against corporate security giant G4S.

“In a major win for human rights activism against corporate complicity, the world’s largest private security company Allied Universal, which owns G4S, has decided to sell all its remaining business in apartheid Israel,” BDS said in a statement, adding:

“This follows years of an effective #StopG4S campaign waged by the BDS movement for Palestinian rights.”

The BDS campaign against G4S was launched in 2012 by Palestinian prisoners’ rights and human rights organizations to support the major hunger strike waged then by Palestinian political prisoners.

Posted on: Jun 02 08:26

German politicians have been left fearing the consequences of diversity after migrant parades celebrated the re-election of Turkey’s Islamist president took place in the country.

Numerous elected officials within Germany have expressed concern at the parades, which celebrated the victory of Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in Turkey’s presidential election on Sunday.

Erdoğan is increasingly seen as an adversary of the European Union by many, with the Turkish strongman often coming at odds with European powers over his increasingly close relationship with Russia’s Vladimir Putin and for frequently blackmailing the bloc with opening up the floodgates of migration.

Progressives across the continent would have also likely ben perturbed by the Islamist Turkish president’s victory speech, in which he vowed to protect the country from alleged attempts by the “pro-LGBT” to “infiltrate” Turkish society.

Posted on: Jun 02 08:25

The left-wing Labour Party is reportedly planning on forcing landowners to sell their land at cut-rate prices to force more home building.

In a return to form, the Labour Party is reportedly eyeing a socialist-style scheme they claim will alleviate the ‘housing crisis’ by using the long arm of the state to force the sale of privately-held land at lower-than-usual prices.

According to a report from the Financial Times, Lisa Nandy, Labour’s shadow levelling-up secretary, is prepping plans to change the rules surrounding compulsory purchase orders (CPO), which allows government bodies to acquire land without the consent of the owner under circumstances in which it is deemed necessary to provide for the public good, in a similar manner to eminent domain in the United States.

At present, landowners who face such orders are entitled to a “hope” premium on their property, meaning that their land is valued at a price assuming that it would go towards development and therefore far more valuable than an average plot of land, the higher price compensating owners for having their land taken from under their feet.

Posted on: Jun 02 08:24

The presidents of Kosovo and Serbia held talks on Thursday on resolving a political crisis that has spiralled into violence, with the leaders of France and Germany pressing them to take swift steps to reduce tensions.

Kosovo's Vjosa Osmani and Serbia's Aleksandar Vucic met briefly in the presence of French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and the European Union's foreign policy chief on the sidelines of a summit in Moldova.

The EU and the United States have expressed alarm at the latest in a long-line of crises between Kosovo's ethnic Albanian-dominated government and ethnic Serbs who are a majority in the north.

Violence flared on Monday after Kosovo authorities, backed by special police units, installed ethnic Albanian mayors in offices in northern municipalities. The mayors had been elected on turnout of just 3.5% after Serbs boycotted local polls.

Posted on: Jun 02 08:22

Despite the quiet after the latest Israeli aggression on the besieged coastal enclave, Gaza's children continue to grapple with significant mental health issues.

"All Gazans, in particular children, were subjected to psychological trauma during the Israeli assault, mainly as they did not know if they will be affected by the Israeli attacks," Sami Owaida, a head of the nongovernment Gaza Community Mental Health Programme (GCMHP), said to The New Arab.

Earlier in May, Israel launched a bloody five-day bloody operation against the Palestinian Islamic Jihad movement (PIJ), starting with the killing of three senior commanders and their families while they slept. 

Posted on: Jun 02 08:22

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov met Thursday with China's deputy foreign minister and other top diplomats from the BRICS bloc of developing economies for discussions that included the group's possible expansion to include the major oil-producing nations of Saudi Arabia, Iran and the United Arab Emirates.

Ahead of the talks at a luxury oceanside hotel in South Africa, Lavrov cast BRICS — an acronym for current members Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa — as central to the establishment of a "more just" world order.

The Russian minister also took swipes at the West for its sanctions and other forms of what Lavrov alleged was "financial blackmail” against Moscow, according to a translation of his comments.

South African Foreign Minister Naledi Pandor, who hosted the talks, confirmed that an invitation had been extended to Russian President Vladimir Putin to attend a larger BRICS summit scheduled for August despite Putin being the subject of an International Criminal Court arrest warrant.

Posted on: Jun 02 08:21

A left-wing parliamentarian in Germany has openly voiced his support for an Antifa activist convicted on Wednesday of being involved in a gang that violently attacked people with hammers.

Ferat Koçak, a Berlin parliamentarian for the Die Linke party, has openly voiced his support for Lina E., a violent Antifa extremist who has now been convicted of being a member of a gang that perpetrated numerous violent attacks on right-wingers.

The unnamed Antifa gang reportedly conducted numerous attacks on individuals and groups perceived as being part of Germany’s extreme right, using hammers and clubs to inflict sometimes life-threatening injuries on numerous individuals.

One individual set upon by the group was reportedly targeted due to the hat he was wearing, which was perceived as being designed by a right-wing clothing company.

Posted on: Jun 02 08:20

France and Germany urged the leaders of Kosovo and Serbia to organise new elections as soon as possible in regions affected by recent civil unrest, French President Emmanuel Macron said on Thursday after talks in Moldova with the two parties.

Speaking after a summit of European leaders in Moldova, Macron said he and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz had given them a week to respond to their proposals.

Unrest in Kosovo's north has intensified since ethnic Albanian mayors took office in the region's Serb-majority area, a move that led the U.S. and its allies to rebuke Pristina. The majority Serb population had boycotted the April election, allowing ethnic Albanians to win the poll.

"What we have asked the two parties is very simple: the organisation as soon as possible of new elections in these four municipalities with a commitment from Kosovo, Macron told reporters.

They had also asked for clear participation from the Serbian side and the resolution without delay on the question of the associations of Serb municipalities from the Kosovo side.

Posted on: Jun 02 08:20

The tragic death of Jordan Neely and the despicable legal lynching of Daniel Penny are not random events.

Democrats have instituted globalist-inspired programs and policies, transforming major cities like New York into dystopian hellscapes. Public safety has been abandoned. Predatory criminals, the drug addicted, and the violently mentally ill roam the streets and subways with impunity. Police are either absent or passive spectators. States attorneys protect criminals instead of their victims.

The result is law-abiding citizens have been left to survive on their own. And when heroes like Daniel Penny stand up to protect their lives and those of their fellow citizens—they are crushed.

Posted on: Jun 02 08:19

The Republican primary is already in full swing. While a few second-tier candidates have joined the fray, including neoconservative Nikki Haley, Senator Tim Scott (R-S.C.), and old school evangelical and former Vice President Mike Pence, the chief contest is between former President Donald Trump and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis.

Things are already heated. Some former Trump supporters now support DeSantis. Indeed, they have completely turned against Trump. The firehose of criticism reminds one of the refrains of a jilted lover. 

Perhaps these former enthusiasts expected too much from Trump and from politics in general. On the other hand, it’s not like his high self-regard or lack of discipline was some big secret that should have come as a surprise to them. 

Even I, as a Trump supporter, had my share of criticisms of him during his presidency, since I judged him by his fidelity to his 2016 campaign promises. But one has to wonder, with the volume and intensity of his erstwhile supporters’ attacks, how much money is sloshing around turning pundits into hired guns for Team DeSantis.

Posted on: Jun 02 08:18

Israel recently celebrated its 75th anniversary, and many Jews and Christians see the state’s existence as a fulfillment of biblical prophecy, but a former Israeli general also raised the alarm about the growing threats from Iran and its allies in the East.

“Things have changed dramatically in the last year,” Amir Avivi, a retired brigadier general in the Israeli Defense Forces, told The Daily Signal in an interview at the National Religious Broadcasters Convention last week. “We’ve seen the East moving towards adapting to the sanctions the West is imposing in the last year, especially on Russia and rightly so. But China, Russia, Iran, North Korea, all of these countries are getting closer and closer together. It enables them to overcome sanctions.”

In April, China brokered a deal between Iran and Saudi Arabia, signaling a new balance of power in the Middle East.

“When they look at the West, they see a strong military power, but with zero willingness to use power,” Avivi warned. “When this is the reality, they feel they can pretty much do whatever they want and this is destabilizing the whole globe.”

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Posted on: Jun 02 08:17

German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius is set to attend a major Asian defense summit in Singapore at the start of a one-week trip to the region that will see him also visit Indonesia and India.

The Shangri-La Dialogue, run by British think tank the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS),

will this year host a number of key European delegates, including Ukraine's defense minister, Oleksiy Reznikov, amid European efforts to bolster support for Kyiv amid the Russian invasion.

The summit from June 2-4 will also focus on European commitment to the Asia region as China's increasing assertiveness raises concerns among its neighbors. 

Posted on: Jun 02 08:05

Microbiologist Kevin McKernan — a former researcher and team leader for the MIT Human Genome project — has discovered massive DNA contamination in the mRNA COVID shots, including simian virus 40 (SV40) promoters

SV40 has been linked to cancer in humans, including mesotheliomas, lymphomas and cancers of the brain and bone. In 2002, the Lancet published evidence linking polio vaccines contaminated with SV40 to Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. According to the authors, the vaccine may be responsible for up to 50% of the 55,000 Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma cases diagnosed each year

The level of contamination varies depending on the platform used to measure it, but no matter which method is used, the level of DNA contamination is significantly higher than the regulatory limits in both Europe and the U.S. The highest level of DNA contamination found was 30%

The finding of DNA means the mRNA COVID shots may have the ability to alter the human genome

Posted on: Jun 02 08:04

Iran and the Taliban exchanged heavy gunfire last week on the Islamic Republic's border with Afghanistan, killing and wounding troops while sharply intensifying rising tensions between the countries.  

Both sides accused each other of shooting first.

The clash came amid an escalating dispute between Kabul and Tehran over the Helmand River, which is a vital source of water for both sides, supporting agriculture, livelihoods and ecosystems in the region.

Afghanistan and Iran have been at loggerheads over the sharing of river water for over a century.

The Helmand is Afghanistan's longest river. It originates near Kabul in the western Hindu Kush mountain range and flows in a southwesterly direction through desert areas for a total of about 1,150 kilometers (715 miles) before emptying into Lake Hamun, which straddles the Afghanistan-Iran border.

Posted on: Jun 02 08:03

Celebrity journalist A.J. Benza appeared on a recent episode of “Ask Dr. Drew,” during which he claimed that actor and comedian Jamie Foxx became seriously injured after getting “vaccinated” for the Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) – and his family is allegedly covering it all up.

Foxx allegedly became blind and partially paralyzed after taking a COVID injection that was forced on him by a film studio in order to work. Ever since then, it has been a coverup city as far as Foxx’s health is concerned.

“I lost a couple friends in the last couple of years who got the injection,” Benza told Dr. Drew during the segment. “One of my best friends died last Saturday – paratrooper, ex-special forces, 51-years-old, in the best shape of his life – just goes to sleep and doesn’t wake up, black guy.”

“I think that this ties into the Jamie Foxx theory. I worked my butt off to get a story about what happened to Jamie Foxx because it was all baloney what they were reporting – he’s playing Pickleball, he’s responding in Instagram – no he’s not, it’s all lies.”

Posted on: Jun 02 08:03

A US media outlet has rolled footage of a building collapse in the state of Iowa while doing a segment about a recent Ukrainian drone strike against the Russian capital.

The attack occurred earlier this week when several Ukrainian UAVs managed to penetrate Russia’s airspace and reach Moscow.

However, the segment about that attack that aired on Newsmax’s "The Record With Greta Van Susteren" featured footage of a partially-collapsed building in Davenport, Iowa.

A large "Tow-Away Zone" sign (written in English) clearly seen in front of the building made this situation particularly perplexing: while signs written in both English and Russian are not uncommon in Moscow, an English-only sign would be a very unusual sight.

Posted on: Jun 02 08:00

The United States will soon open a small diplomatic mission in Norway that will be its northernmost in the world and only such facility above the Arctic Circle, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced Thursday.

The move, which Blinken announced at a news conference in Oslo after attending a NATO foreign ministers meeting, comes as competition over the high north’s resources with Russia intensifies.

Blinken said the U.S. would open what is known as an “American Presence Post” in Tromsoe, which sits 350 kilometers (217 miles) north of the Arctic Circle. The post will open later this year and be staffed by a single U.S. diplomat with the title of “consul.”

“We're here to work with like-minded allies to advance our vision of a peaceful, stable and cooperative Arctic,” Blinken said before meeting Norway's foreign minister whose country is preparing to assume the chairmanship of the Arctic Council, which is headquartered in Tromsoe.

Posted on: Jun 02 07:59

More than 100,000 people have fled violence in Sudan to neighbouring Chad and the numbers could double in the next three months, the U.N. refugee agency said on Thursday.

The near seven-week conflict has pushed Sudan into a humanitarian crisis and turned one of Africa's greatest cities - the three-part capital of Khartoum, Omdurman and Bahri on the confluence on the Blue and White Niles - into a war zone.

"As the rainy season is coming within the next few weeks, we require massive logistics to move refugees from border areas... We need to establish immediately new camps and extension of existing camps," UNHCR Chad representative Laura Lo Castro said.

One of the poorest countries in the world, Chad was already hosting close to 600,000 refugees before conflict broke out in Sudan in April.

Posted on: Jun 02 07:59

Sanaa’s National Salvation Government (NSG) in Yemen accused the Saudi Arabian authorities of preventing Yemeni Muslims from performing their Hajj pilgrimage in Mecca, Al-Mayadeen reported on 31 May.

Fouad Naji, the Deputy Minister of Guidance and Hajj Affairs, said that “the Saudi regime has used the Hajj as a pressure tool throughout the years of aggression and blockade.”

The Minister of Guidance and Hajj Affairs in Yemen, Najib Al-Ajji, also described the obstruction as politically motivated. He also disclosed that around 24,000 Yemenis had attended their pilgrimage this year, adding that Saudi Arabia and its coalition allies have created several obstacles for Yemeni pilgrims, such as increased costs.

Ajji pointed out that Yemeni pilgrims are only allowed to attend Hajj if they enter the kingdom from areas in Yemen controlled by the Saudi-backed government, and that Saudi Arabia must facilitate Hajj pilgrimages without any politicized pushback.

Posted on: Jun 02 07:58

The US and Saudi Arabia on Thursday announced a suspension of Sudan peace talks in the Saudi city of Jeddah, citing “repeated serious violations” of the short-term ceasefire agreement by Sudan’s warring parties.

In a joint statement, Washington and Riyadh criticised the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) and the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) for their violations of the ceasefire, which have blocked the delivery of humanitarian aid to civilians.

"Once the parties make clear by their actions that they are serious about complying with the ceasefire, the facilitators are prepared to resume the suspended discussions to find a negotiated solution to this conflict," they added. 

The suspension is largely symbolic, given that Sudan's army announced earlier on Thursday that it was pulling out of ceasefire discussions with the paramilitary RSF

Posted on: Jun 02 07:57

Former US President Donald Trump said Thursday he will "shift gears" and put the United States in order within six months if he is reelected in the 2024 presidential election.

"So I heard [Florida Governor Ron] DeSantis saying: 'Oh, I get eight years, I get eight years.' He gets what. You don't need four, and you don't need eight. You need six months. Within six months, I said, things can be done," Trump told an Iowa town hall when asked how much time he would need to deal with the border crisis, and get prices, inflation and crime rates in the country down.

"We gonna drill. We gonna get our energy down. When the energy comes down, other things come down. And we're gonna take care of things. We gonna immediately close up the border."

Posted on: Jun 02 07:56