"A dishonest government creates a dishonest people!" -- Michael Rivero

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National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan said recent retaliatory strikes are “just the beginning,” claiming the United States is prepared for the “contingency” of increased tensions with Iran.

“This was the beginning of our response, there will be more steps,” said US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan during an appearance on US television Sunday, claiming the United States was “prepared” for increased tension with Iran.

“Some of those steps will be seen, some may not be seen,” he added cryptically. “But there will be more action taken to respond to the tragic death of the three brave U.S. service members.”

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Germany and Ukraine may seal a security cooperation agreement at the Munich Security Conference, which will take place from February 16-18, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung has reported. The German newspaper claimed that Berlin and Kiev had already drafted the deal.

The UK became the first nation to sign a bilateral security agreement with Ukraine on January 12, under which the two nations pledge to defend each other if attacked. Last month, French President Emmanuel Macron revealed plans to follow suit in February.

In its article on Friday, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, citing anonymous “government circles,” claimed the pact would be signed on the first day of the upcoming summit. The newspaper quoted Ukraine’s Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic integration, Olga Stefanishyna, as saying that a Ukrainian delegation had worked out a “draft for an agreement on bilateral security guarantees” the previous day. She added that the text was “not decided on, but generally ready.”

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The British Royal Navy's largest military vessel, the aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth, will miss upcoming NATO war games that it was supposed to lead, after suffering an unexpected “issue” in one of its propeller shafts. The development was announced by London on Sunday, with the aircraft carrier’s sister ship, the HMS Prince of Wales, set to take its place in the military bloc's drills.

The “issue” was discovered during the final pre-sail check, with the carrier then assessed as unfit to take part in the exercise.

“Routine pre-sailing checks yesterday identified an issue with a coupling on HMS Queen Elizabeth’s starboard propeller shaft. As such, the ship will not sail on Sunday,” Fleet Commander Vice Admiral Andrew Burns said in a statement.

“HMS Prince of Wales will take her place on NATO duties and will set sail for Exercise Steadfast Defender as soon as possible,” he added.

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JERUSALEM (AP) — A far-right minister in Israel’s government has criticized President Joe Biden and said that having Donald Trump in power would allow more freedom to fight Hamas. The comments sparked outrage among other Israeli officials on Sunday and highlighted the sensitivity of relations as U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken visits the region again this week.

The Biden administration has skirted Congress to rush weapons to Israel and shielded it from international calls for a cease-fire in the four months since Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack. But the White House has urged Israel to take greater measures to avoid harming civilians and allow more aid to besieged Gaza.

Itamar Ben-Gvir, Israel’s national security minister, said in an interview with The Wall Street Journal that Biden was hindering Israel’s war effort.

“Instead of giving us his full backing, Biden is busy with giving humanitarian aid and fuel (to Gaza), which goes to Hamas,” Ben-Gvir said. “If Trump was in power, the U.S. conduct would be completely different.”

Claire's Observations:  Yes,  I would hope for a "completely different" conduct and outcome, from President Trump, if he gets re-elected in November's election:  an immediate cease-fire, and the crafting of a viable nation-state of Palestine.

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The city of Krivyi Rih came under several Russian attacks in recent days. On the night of February 4, new wave of explosions was reported in the area. According to local reports, Russian strikes destroyed Ukrainian fuel depots, damaged the local power plant and a large industrial facility.

After one of the explosions, electricity supply was cut off in several districts of the city.

Residents of Krivyi Rih reported large explosion at one of the enterprises in this city. After the explosion, a fire broke out in the area, which lasted all night.

The local sources confirmed that one of the targets hit by Russian forces was Krivirizhstal, currently known as Arcelor Mittal Krivoi Rog, after it became part of international ArcelorMittal. The local authorities reported that some “crisis measures” were taken after the strike. The plant is the largest steel production facility in the territories under the Kiev’s control. Almost all Ukrainian industrial facilities are currently providing for the needs of the Ukrainian military. Industrial facilities in Krivyi Rih reportedly produce up to a third of the entire construction of military fortifications.

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 Kiev’s terrorist attack on Lisichansk’s residential areas was, according to preliminary reports, conducted with the weapons provided by Western countries, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said in a statement, posted on the ministry’s website.

"According to preliminary information, the strike was carried out with Western weapons," she said. "Another terrorist attack is a ‘thank you’ from Kiev extremists for the ‘generous’ financial support by the European Union countries."

Zakharova pointed out that EU citizens must know what their taxes are used for, as "they are used for purchasing lethal weapons systems and for sending them to the Kiev regime that uses them to kill civilians."

"This (the strike on Lisichansk - TASS) is new proof of the criminal nature of the Kiev regime, its kingpins on Bankovaya (a street in Kiev that houses Ukraine’s government institutions - TASS) and the fact that the Ukrainian armed forces, as Russian President Vladimir Putin indicated, have completely evolved into a terrorist organization," the diplomat said.

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Hundreds of trucks and vehicles arrived in western Texas Friday night as part of the Take Our Border Back Convoy.  

Americans from Tennessee, Maryland, New York, Missouri, Ohio, New Mexico, and many other states gathered Friday night and Saturday in Quemado, Texas, about 150 miles west of San Antonio, to call on elected officials to secure the border.  

“Close the border,” Sharisa Hoke, 50, told The Daily Signal as the convoy arrived at Cornerstone Children’s Ranch on Friday. “Deport everybody who came here illegally, and I think we even need a moratorium on immigration for just a little bit to even it all back out,” she said.  

Hoke and her family traveled with the convoy for two days from their home in Aledo, Texas. 

Asked what her message is to the Biden administration and U.S. elected leaders, Hoke said, “I would like them to follow the law, but mostly, read our Constitution and give the people back their voice. It just amazes me that they can do whatever they want nowadays, and nobody is held accountable,” she said. “So I’d just like them to start with closing the border actually, like the law says.” 

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American policymakers must not be duped into believing that U.S. military technology is unique or superior, or that the U.S. Armed Forces, on land or sea, are immune to large-scale precision strikes. Bombing will not prevent Iran from establishing new and better air defense sites. In fact, history suggests that high altitude bombing increases the determination of hostile opponents to resist, not surrender. 

Hypersonic weapons will penetrate existing air defenses and target U.S. warships at sea. These, along with probable Iranian access to Russian and Chinese space-based intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance capabilities, argue for preparations that exceed the needs of a few Air and Naval strike packages. Strikes on Iran, Iraq and Syria may well trigger a lethal response from cells already inserted into the United States across our open border with Mexico. 

Americans may also resist the idea that Americans in uniform are putting their lives on the line in defense of Israel’s horrific campaign of expulsion and killing in Gaza, especially when Biden can halt the campaign in Gaza with just a phone call. Americans must realize that Israel will be hard-pressed to defend itself against Hezbollah’s thousands of missiles, let alone Iran’s precision-guided theater ballistic missiles

Claire's Observations:  The only statement here with which I profoundly disagree, is the statement that "Biden can halt the campaign in Gaza with just a phone call".  In the last White House "Read Out", of the conversation between Netanyahu and Biden, 19 January 2024, found here:  ( https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/statements-releases/2024/01/19/readout-of-president-joe-bidens-call-with-prime-minister-netanyahu-of-israel-2/), there is utterly no mention of "stopping the campaign in Gaza." whatsoever.  The bottom line here, is that Biden has absolutely ZERO influence over Prime Minister Netanyahu, and that does not bode well for Israeli "restraint" in Gaza; the West Bank; or against Egypt, if Netanyahu manages to "dump" those Palestinians still standing right across the border, and into that country, permanently.

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Dozens of people in Syria and Iraq were killed Saturday morning after the United States fired ‘precision munitions’ into the two countries against 85 targets ranging from command and control and intelligence centers to logistics bases used by anti-ISIS* militias. Sputnik asked a trio of experts about the strikes' implications for the region.

Russia called for an urgent meeting of the United Nations Security Council on Saturday in the wake of what Moscow characterized as a “new blatant act” of US “aggression against sovereign states.”

The strikes, carried out against what the Pentagon characterized as Iranian Revolutionary Guard Quds Force units and “affiliated militia” forces in Syria and Iraq, came after a months-long regional escalation of militia attacks against illegal US bases in Syria and outposts in Iraq, in response to Washington’s support for Israel’s war in Gaza. The Pentagon warned of potential strikes against targets inside Iraq and Syria last week after a militia drone attack against Tower 22, a US military outpost in Jordan just across the border from an illegal US base in southern Syria, which killed three American troops and injured 47 others.

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A Canadian military base is hosting  “drag queen bingo” nights for soldiers and their spouses.  

On March 2, the Huron Club Jr Rank Mess is hosting their second “drag queen bingo” for military personnel at the Canadian Forces Base (CFB) Borden, Ontario. It will follow a previous drag night, which was held this January 28. 

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More than 800 government officials in the United States and Europe released a letter Friday criticizing their countries' leaders for providing unconditional military and diplomatic support to Israel as it inflicts disaster on Gaza's population.

The civil servants, who signed the letter anonymously due to fear of reprisal, wrote that their attempts to voice concerns internally about their governments' support for Israel's assault on Gaza "were overruled by political and ideological considerations."

"We are obliged to do everything in our power on behalf of our countries and ourselves to not be complicit in one of the worst human catastrophes of this century," the letter reads. "We are obliged to warn the publics of our countries, whom we serve, and to act in concert with transnational colleagues."

"Israel has shown no boundaries in its military operations in Gaza, which has resulted in tens of thousands of preventable civilian deaths," the letter continues. "There is a plausible risk that our governments' policies are contributing to grave violations of international humanitarian law, war crimes, and even ethnic cleansing or genocide."

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The housing market is in terrible shape. Not even the highest mortgage rates in nearly 23 years — can stop the continued climb of home prices.

In case you haven't realized, affordability has never been worse. People can't afford to buy a home, and they can't afford to rent a home. However, throughout history, there has always been a boom and bust cycle throughout the real estate market, and at some point within this year, there might be another crash. BE PREPARED FOR STARVATION…

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Ex-Google TechLead on what the tech layoffs mean for software engineers. 

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Political commentator Megyn Kelly has reacted to the fact that she was singled out and monitored by the large pharmaceutical corporation, Moderna, after sharing her adverse reactions to the COVID vaccine publicly. Last year, Kelly voiced regret over her decision to get the COVID shot which, in her case, reportedly resulted in autoimmune complications. As a healthy 52-year-old woman, Kelly, in her podcast, expressed doubt over the necessity of getting vaccinated, as she contracted COVID “many times” after.

She further shared that her annual medical check-up had revealed a positive result for an autoimmune condition for the first time ever. “And she said ‘yes.’ Yes. I wasn’t the only one she’d seen that with,” Kelly noted, referring to the New York’s finest rheumatologist’s reaction to her querying whether her vaccination and subsequent COVID contraction within three weeks could be linked.

Subsequently, a year later, a separate investigation conducted by Lee Fang revealed that Moderna had marked Kelly under its controversial “misinformation” reporting system.

Moderna utilized artificial intelligence to scrutinize millions of online conversations worldwide, influencing the narrative around vaccines.
Internal documents revealed that the company paid special attention to prominent vaccine dissenters.

The lobbying group for Pfizer and Moderna, Public Goods Project (PGP) has played a role in identifying supposed vaccine misinformation and aided in the removal of such content from Twitter and other social networks.

PGP consistently provided Twitter with Excel spreadsheets listing accounts to promote and others to ban.

This was all due to the concern that public statements from those like Kelly may fuel “vaccine hesitancy.” An alert about Kelly’s comments, which the company believe could repel those still undecided about getting vaccinated, was issued by Moderna. They voiced fears that her remarks could exacerbate the growing apprehensions about the potential correlation between autoimmune diseases and COVID-19 vaccines. Interestingly, the information conveyed by Moderna’s alert seemed to validate Kelly’s claims instead of refuting them.

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US Cattle Herd At 73-Year Lows As Retail Beef Prices At Record Highs

Readers have been well informed about 'beeflation' and why it's happening: 

The latest data from the US Department of Agriculture's biannual cattle inventory report on Wednesday showed that the US cattle herd (as of Jan. 1) fell 2% from a year ago to 87.2 million cattle. That's the smallest herd count since 1951. 

Source: Bloomberg 

Bloomberg explains the reason why ranchers are increasingly culling more cows: 

American ranchers have for the past four years been culling more cows than they were retaining for breeding because of persistent droughts, surging feed costs and elevated interest rates.

A shrinking herd has pushed US retail beef prices to a record of $5.21 per pound. Rising food prices are the central bank's worst enemy.

Claire's Observations:  IF your family is meat/poultry-oriented, you may well want to look at getting some freezer space, and stocking it now; unfortunately, it appears that these protein-rich food sources may soon be well beyond the economic means of many families.  The other thing is, learn to cook tougher cuts of meat more slowly.  In  this economy, a crockpot can become a real life-saver, in terms of providing tasty, tender entrees for yourself, and your family.  Also, before you go to the store, look to see which vegetables contain the most protein, and with pasta, see if there are any "protein enriched" pastas you can buy; this will help as well. 

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Last week's dead cat bounce in Chinese stocks - after Beijing did everything but launch a multi-trillion fiscal stimmy bazooka (something it will do, later if not sooner) - is a distant memory, and as Asian markets open for trading in the news week, Chinese markets are cratering with the Shanghai Composite plunging as much as 3.1% to a fresh five-year low..

... while the broader CSI 1,000 Index is also in free-fall and also on pace to re-test the 2018 lows with as many as 990 of the 1000 companies of the index in the red.


Putting the latest collapse in context, China's market capitalization has sunk by just over $1 trillion in the space of 13 trading days, dragging the total value of the nation’s equities under $8 trillion on Friday, from just above $9 trillion on Jan. 16, as the authorities’ hand-wringing about equity declines simply concentrated investors’ minds on the apparent lack of any solutions for the downturn.

There were several catalysts for the plunge, first and foremost appears to be Trump confirmation that he would impose a tariff on Chinese goods of more than 60% if elected, signaling an increasingly hawkish tone against the top supplier of goods to the US.

Speaking in an interview on Fox News’ Sunday Morning Futures, Trump was asked about a Washington Post report that he was considering a flat 60% tariff on Chinese goods imports; Trump's response: “no, I would say maybe it’s going to be more than that.” The Bezos Post report on Jan. 27 sparked currency hedges by traders bracing for any market turbulence that policies under a second Trump presidency could set off.

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Several years ago, DNA-testing company 23andMe began publicly trading on NASDAQ following a deal to merge with VG Acquisition Corp., a special-purpose acquisition company founded by billionaire Richard Branson. The company was pimped by Hollywood elites, such as Oprah and Lizzo, as market capitalization topped $6 billion in late 2021. 

Fast forward this past week, 23andMe has lost 94% of its market cap following the November 2021 peak, and NASDAQ threatened to delist the penny stock as it closed around 69 cents per share on Friday. 

Anne Wojcicki, 23andMe's chief executive, has led the cash-burning startup that has never turned a profit. After three rounds of layoffs and a subsidiary sale, a Wall Street Journal report said the company "could run out of cash by 2025." 

The inevitable fire sale of 23andMe has raised eyebrows among social media platform X users. 

A healthcare investor named Will Manidis asked this question on X: "Within months you will be able to buy genomics data from 14 million Americans for +/- $200m?" 

Manidis warned in the viral post: "The inevitable fire sale of this mess to an overseas PE firm is going to be a national security matter on the scale of which we haven't seen in healthcare in years.

Claire's Observations: the reality here is, one never knows into whose hands that data might fall, and for what purpose it might ultimately be used.   Consumer protection here is absolutely in its infancy, and needs to be strengthened, both intelligently... and quickly.

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Polish farmers from the Solidarity trade union plan a general strike starting this Friday with a blockade of border crossings between Poland and Ukraine, joining similar protests all over Europe.

The presiding officers of the farmers’ trade union “Solidarity” unanimously adopted a resolution on Wednesday announcing a general strike of farmers throughout the country, according to a union’s statement.

The strike will begin on February 9 with a blockade of all border crossings between Poland and Ukraine, along with blockades of roads and highways across the country between Feb. 9 and March 10, the trade union said in the statement on Thursday.

Our patience has run out. Brussels’ position on the last day of January 2024 is unacceptable for our entire agricultural community,” the trade union said in the statement.

“Additionally, the passivity of the Polish authorities... regarding the import of agricultural produce and food products from Ukraine leave us with no other choice but to declare a general strike.”

Solidarity also demanded that the Polish government ensure the profitability of Polish agriculture and rebuild the Polish agro-processing sector, as, in its opinion, they are not protected under the “European Green Deal,” which is currently being implemented.

Polish family farms are the basis of the country’s food security,” the trade union said. “We are fighting for our common good, which is to protect Polish family farms, often multi-generational farms, from collapse and bankruptcy.”

The European Green Deal is the European Union’s initiative to fight climate change and environmental degradation, which the EU considers “an existential threat to Europe and the world,” according to a policy statement by the European Commission.

The European Commission [the EU’s executive body] has adopted a set of proposals to make the EU’s climate, energy, transport, and taxation policies fit for reducing net greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55 percent by 2030, compared to 1990 levels.” with the ultimate goal of “no net emissions of greenhouse gases by 2050,” the statement said.

Farmers in France, Belgium, Portugal, Greece, and Germany have been protesting against the constraints placed on them by EU measures to tackle climate change, rising costs, and unfair competition from abroad. Polish farmers have been particularly vocal about the impact of cheap food imports from neighboring Ukraine.

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The US created a new stockpile of military equipment during drills in Australia last summer to prepare for a future war with China over Taiwan, Reuters reported on Wednesday.

The stockpile was left behind after the Talisman Sabre exercises, which ran from July 22 to August 4 and were billed as the largest-ever iteration of the drill, demonstrating US focus on preparing for a future conflict in the Asia Pacific.

The Reuters report said the equipment left behind includes 330 vehicles and trailers and 130 containers in a warehouse in Bandiana, a suburb of Wodonga, a city in southeastern Australia.

The supplies are enough to supply three logistics companies that would focus on getting equipment to US troops who are fighting a war elsewhere in the region. “We’re looking to do this more and more,” said Gen. Charles Flynn, the top Army commander in the Pacific. “There’s a number of other countries in the region where we already have agreements to do that.”

The US is working to establish stockpiles in the Philippines, Japan, and other countries in the region. Congress is also looking to establish a weapons stockpile in Taiwan itself, something that might not be publicized due to the risk of provoking China.

US Army Secretary Christine Wormuth said last year that the Army’s role in a future war with China would be to establish “staging bases for the Navy, for the Marines, for the Air Force” and to “provide intra-theater sustainment” using the weapons stockpiles and watercraft

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While the House has gone full 'Israel or Bust', the Senate has come up with a $118 billion bipartisan agreement which would allow 1.5 million illegals to enter the US every year, allocates $2.3 billion towards NGOs and other organizations which traffic them, gives $14.1 billion in security assistance to Israel, and a whopping $60 billion in support to Ukraine.

The bill also locks in green card giveaways until 2030

Claire's Observations:  If anyone thought, for a moment, that any representative of any state who cobbled this Frankenstein monster of a bill together, actually gave something approximating a damn about the people they allegedly represent, this bill is absolutely proof positive that they do not.  

And where, please, is the money supposed to come from, to support this bill?!?  This country's already in the red to the tune of $ 34 trillion dollars that we know of.  Many taxpayers are jobless, thanks to the economic havoc into which the economy was thrown, courtesy of the US "response" to covid (not to mention horrific health consequences from these shots) .  Food banks are nearly tapped out. Homeless Vets are still sleeping rough in our streets, thanks to  the Federal Government, which has ordered access only for illegal immigrants, and not our Vets. And this country is continuing to support endless wars in the Middle East and Ukraine (and God only knows where else the Legacy Press won't talk about).

This is moral; fiscal; and martial  insanity writ large, but hey; one has to imagine that "the price was right", for all those who supported it!!


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