I need to reach a wider audience!
I need to reach a wider audience!
"An Income Tax on even 1%, is Equivalent to Slavery" -- Thomas Jefferson
It was snowing and the roads were empty on an early Saturday. The dread was, is it really him? Will he agree to speak?
We arrived at his apartment and were greeted by a friend who took us up. He introduces himself in smart attire. Meet Ali Shallal al-Qaysi, the man under the hood of the torture photos from the infamous Abu Ghraib prison.
He takes me to the kitchen and whispers as we set up for the TV interview in the other room – some details are too gruesome and painful to recount. I assure him, it is his story and I will listen to what he has to tell us. What ensues in the next couple of hours is not for the faint-hearted. His stories paint a horrific picture of inhumane abuse, humiliation, torture and sadistic behaviour.
“I was standing on the box. It is so strong, not breakable. They tied wires and started electrical shocks. I remember biting my tongue, my eyes felt they were about to pop out. I started bleeding from under the mask and I fell down,” says Ali.
Writing this, I must admit that my rage and pain build up inside, still twenty years later. Below, see what TFF and I wrote back then and why we were, simply put, making better predictions on a shoestring budget than the US and other NATO decision-makers on multi-billion-dollar budgets.
Like other wars and interventions, this was no “mistake”. It was an unavoidable consequence of Western MIRE – Militarism, Imperialism, Racism and Exceptionalism.
The West has learned nothing. Militarism is now its main cohesive force into its manifest destiny: Decline and fall.
President George W. Bush announcing that he has just started the war on Iraq. Listen carefully! All the arguments and aims he presents were either false, mistaken or outright lies. And sanctimonious.
Permit me start out with a quotation from the British Stop The War Coalition’s newsletter:
“A report released this week by the Costs of War Project estimates that between 550,000-580,000 people have been killed since March 2003 in Iraq and Syria and “several times as many may have died due to indirect causes such as preventable diseases.”
A newly proposed propulsion system could theoretically beam a heavy spacecraft to outside the confines of our Solar System in less than 5 years – a feat that took the historic Voyager 1 probe 35 years to achieve.
The concept, known as 'pellet-beam' propulsion, was awarded an early-stage US$175,000 NASA grant for further development earlier this year.
To be clear, the concept currently doesn't exist much beyond calculations on paper, so we can't get too excited just yet.
Still, it's attracted attention not only because of its potential to get us into interstellar space within a human lifetime – something that traditional, chemical-fueled rockets can't – but also because it claims it can do so with much larger crafts.
Last summer, we looked at the collapse of the power grid in South Africa. The country which previously had the most economically stable and prosperous government in sub-Saharan Africa suffered waves of unemployment and looting as its economy buckled under the strain. They’ve managed to put together some foreign aid to apply patchwork fixes since then, but there are still rolling blackouts taking place on a regular basis. This winter, however, the power grid problems are spreading in one of the more underreported stories of the year. Zimbabwe and Nigeria are now also experiencing near-total collapses of their power grids. People who still have jobs are having to work at night because that’s the only time there is stable electricity. Scheduled blackouts frequently last up to ten or even twelve hours per day, and both nations’ economies are tanking as a result. (Associated Press)
NATO’s use of depleted uranium munitions in its air war against Yugoslavia was a “horrible and inhumane experiment” against the entire region, Serbian Health Minister Danica Grujicic has said. Contamination from these munitions led to a surge in cancer, autoimmune disease, and infertility, Grujicic added.
NATO used 10 metric tons of depleted uranium – which is used to make the hardened cores of armor-piercing projectiles – during its 1999 air campaign against Yugoslavia, the bloc admitted in a report a year afterwards. Although the report stated that depleted uranium poses “practically no danger" when ingested or absorbed through wounds, evidence from Serbia suggests otherwise.
Russia and China don’t fit into the international system built under Western auspices after the Cold War. They are therefore in favor of replacing it. And it is easier to change it together.
“We hope the world will become a better place, and we have reason to believe it will. At the same time, we are well aware that the future is bright, but the road there is winding.”
This statement by Xi Jinping, which echoes a similar argument made by Mao Zedong in the 1940s, is exactly ten years old. The recently elected President of China was paying his first official visit to Moscow, during which he gave a lecture at MGIMO University.
Archaeologists have unearthed several pieces of statues of ancient Egyptian royalty at a temple near Cairo, the Egyptian Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities announced on Monday.
Among them are parts of a statue of the Pharaoh Ramses II, Egypt’s most powerful and celebrated ruler, who reigned more than 3,000 years ago.
The discoveries also include statues of Ramses IX, Horemheb, and Psamtik II, who reigned from 1126-1108 BC, 1323-1295 BC, and 595-589 BC, respectively.
The High Court in Belfast awarded damages to the family of Liam Holden on Friday, ruling that the late Irishman was waterboarded into making a false confession while in British military custody.
Holden, who died last year aged 68, was falsely convicted of killing a UK paratrooper in the early 1970's. The period of near civil war is known as "The Troubles."
“The plaintiff was subjected to waterboarding; he was hooded; he was driven in a car flanked by soldiers to a location where he thought he would be assassinated,” the judge said. “A gun was put to his head and he was threatened that he would be shot dead.”
Murphy didn’t know it, but he was in the crosshairs of one of the most prolific and notorious members of a booming underground community of Instagram scammers and hackers who shut down profiles on the social network and then demand payment to reactivate them. While they also target TikTok and other platforms, takedown-for-hire scammers like OBN are proliferating on Instagram, exploiting the app’s slow and often ineffective customer support services and its easily manipulated account reporting systems. These Instascammers often target people whose accounts are vulnerable because their content verges on nudity and pornography, which Instagram and its parent company, Meta, prohibit.
I had thought this would be a good week for gloating, 20 years after so many fools supported the Anglo-American invasion of Iraq or (in many ways more shamefully) failed to oppose it. Here's what I said on this page almost exactly 20 years ago, refusing to drop my opposition to the war just because troops had gone in.
'This is not a war for national survival in which we all have to pull together and hush our doubts or be subjugated… Patriotic British people who believe in fair play should be against this war.'
I pointed out that Anthony Blair 'loathes Britain and has never knowingly supported a war fought, or an action taken, in British national interests. He is keen on this war because he likes the new multicultural, Left-wing, United States…'
Earlier today Susan Schmidt and I published an article about a series of changes at the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), a creepy sub-division of the Department of Homleand Security. It turns out that CISA, which just a week or so ago was busted for scrubbing embarrasing text from its website by the Foundation for Freedom Online, quietly eliminated its so-called “MDM” or “Misinformation, Disinformation, and Malinformation” subcommittee.
Just a year ago, the Department of Homeland Security was going all-in on the fight against “MDM.” The notion that America is fatally infected with “Misinformation, Disinformation, and Malinformation” was in fact the animating idea begind the asinine plan the Biden administration announced last April to institute a “Disinformation Governance Board,” which was to be headed by Nina Jankowicz, a self-styled Mary Poppins of digital rectitude:
America took one look at Jankowicz and at most a few fleeting moments considering the “Disinformation Governance Board” plan before concluding, correctly, that it was a beyond-loathsome expression of aristocratic arrogance that needed shutting down before the first Jankowicz presser. Characteristically, the press lied about the public reaction, claiming that the only displeasure was heard from the “GOP.” In fact, all sane people across the spectrum were instantly nauseated, their distress loud enough that the DHS hit “pause” on Jankowicz and the batty MinTruth plan after just three weeks.
The people are pushing back in different countries against the GND and the GR. The EV market is falling apart and the [CB] is panicking and trying to keep people from transitioning into gold or crypto. They are now putting out warnings not to do this. The [DS] tried to have propaganda show and it failed. Trump countered their entire plan and has now turned the tables on them. He is showing the public the corruption and the witch hunt. The people are watching this realtime and people are seeing the truth. He is building the narrative showing that they never had a criminal case and it was all about keeping him out of office, which is election interference. The case of election interference is being built against those who hide in the shadows.
The real question is whether this was a defect in the gene therapies disguised as a vaccine, or a planned facet in their depopulation scheme. You decide.
Fury at President Emmanuel Macron’s decision to bypass parliament on pension reform has sparked days of unrest across the country, reviving scrutiny of police’s heavy-handed tactics and leaving French cities shrouded in tear gas and smoke – with no end in sight to an increasingly bitter standoff.
First an epic tussle with the unions, then a bitter standoff in parliament, and now a full-blown crisis in the streets: France’s festering pension dispute took a turn for the worse this week, with protests against Macron’s deeply unpopular plans hardening and escalating amid scenes of chaos in Paris and other cities.
The unrest – which began last Thursday after Macron used special executive powers to ram his pension reform through parliament – has seen security forces fight running battles with protesters late into the night even as firefighters race to extinguish hundreds of blazes.
Outrage at Macron’s perceived “denial of democracy”, coupled with his refusal to bow to millions of peaceful protesters, have produced an explosive cocktail – with tonnes of uncollected rubbish providing the fuel. Heavy-handed police tactics have in turn exacerbated the unrest, in a spiral of violence that France is all too familiar with.
In response to questions he received during a press conference on Monday about Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin cementing a “new era” in strategic partnership between China and Russia, the White House National Security Council’s John Kirby made no fewer than seven assertions that the US is the “leader” of the world.
Here are excerpts from his comments:
“The two countries have grown closer. But they are both countries that chafe and bristle at U.S. leadership around the world.”
“And in China’s case in particular, they certainly would like to challenge U.S. leadership around the world.”
“But these are not two countries that have, you know, decades-long experience working together and full trust and confidence. It’s a burgeoning of late based on America’s increasing leadership around the world and trying to check that.”
“Peter, these are two countries that have long chafed, as I said to Jeff — long chafed at U.S. leadership around the world and the network of alliances and partnerships that we have.”
“And we work on those relationships one at a time, because every country on the continent is different, has different needs and different expectations of American leadership.”
“That’s the power of American convening leadership. And you don’t see that power out of either Russia or China.”
“But one of the reasons why you’re seeing that tightening relationship is because they recognize that they don’t have that strong foundation of international support for what they’re trying to do, which is basically challenge American leadership around the world.”
The United States does damage to itself by limiting the use of the dollar for situational reasons, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on the Rossiya-24 news channel on Saturday.
"They saw off the branch they’re sitting on - I’ve been reiterating that - by limiting the use of the dollar based on momentary, situational considerations of political nature. They are harming themselves, and we might even add, they shoot themselves in the foot," Putin said in an interview with journalist Pavel Zarubin.
According to Putin, the United States’ claims that Russia is encroaching on the dollar are not true.
"We would use the dollar, but they do not let us," he explained. "How can we make payments? In a currency that is acceptable to our partners. The yuan is one of these currencies, especially since it is used by the International Monetary Fund."
Russian fish imports to the EU have increased by twenty percent, despite the conflict in Ukraine and the avalanche of sanctions imposed. At the same time, countries with the most anti-Russian stance in the whole EU are active importers. This is the case of Poland. Germany and the Netherlands are not far behind in Russian fish consumption. Statistics are provided by the UK edition of the Daily Express.
Thus, according to trade data, the countries of the European Union buy almost a fifth more fish from Russia than before the start of the active phase of Moscow’s special operation in Ukraine. Fish supplies from the Russian Federation to the EU last year increased by 18.7% to 198,800 tonnes, according to the Russian Fisheries Association. This year, only in the first few months, growth has exceeded previous figures and, on an annualized basis, can represent an impressive volume that breaks all records.
The United States and its European allies have sent tens of billions of dollars-worth of military equipment to Kiev to fuel a proxy war against Russia in Ukraine. Moscow has warned repeatedly about the consequences of these actions for regional and global security.
Western countries won’t be able to deliver enough weapons in Ukraine to outgun Russia, President Vladimir Putin has assured.
“Threats exist, of course. When weapons are supplied to a country we are in conflict with, this is always a threat. As for how they can be assessed, of course we know about the plans to supply them,” Putin said in an interview with Russian TV on Saturday, responding to a question about whether Moscow considers Western arms deliveries to Kiev a “threat” to national security.
“We see, hear about and know about these delivery plans. You mentioned one million shells, about the delivery of tanks. One million – is it a lot or a little? This is a significant amount. First of all, the leading NATO countries, let’s say the United States of America, according to our information, produce about 14,000-15,000 shells per month… Ukraine’s Armed Forces, according to our military’s estimates, use up to 5,000 shells per day of hostilities,” Putin said.
On this episode of Direct Impact, host Rick Sanchez held an exclusive interview with legendary journalist Seymour Hersh regarding his investigation into the Nord Stream pipeline explosion, which caused a shockwave throughout the world. Hersh gives a breakdown of his investigation and some of the sinister details he uncovered.
Russia’s decision to deploy its tactical nuclear weapons in Belarus comes as a response to the West's stepping up military aid to Ukraine, the Japanese NHK TV channel and leading Japanese newspapers opine on Sunday.
The purpose appears to be to deter Western countries that are stepping up military support for Ukraine, NHK noted. For its part, Japan's largest newspaper Yomiuri also expresses the view that the decision to deploy tactical nuclear weapons in Belarus is aimed to curb new arms supplies from the US and Europe to Ukraine. The newspaper believes that Moscow is oncerned about a possible counterattack by Kiev with the use of sophisticated foreign weaponry, including Western tanks.
The country's leading business daily Nikkei also thinks that Russian President Vladimir Putin's decision is directly linked to the desire to put pressure and curb deliveries of Western arms to Ukraine. The Asahi newspaper echoed this view.
The US Navy has awarded Raytheon a $234-million contract to produce and deliver the Over-the-Horizon Weapon System (OTH-WS).
The work will be performed in Norway and various US locations through March 2027.
The navy declared a team of Raytheon and Kongsberg the winner of the OTH-WS program in 2018 consisting of contract options worth up to $847.61 million.
The Ukrainian Armed Forces has taken delivery of its first batch of 122-millimeter artillery shells featuring cutting-edge domestic components.
The country’s arms conglomerate Ukroboronprom said it has shipped the third type of ammunition to support Kyiv in countering Russian aggression.
The war-torn nation currently uses the 120-mm mortar mine and the 125-mm tank projectile to neutralize enemy assets.
According to the defense firm, the 122mm shells were manufactured abroad using Ukrainian technology with Ukrainian specialists.
For all their careers as diplomats, Alon Liel and Ilan Baruch advocated Israel’s case. Both served as Israeli ambassadors in South Africa, and Liel rose to be director-general of the foreign service.
Today, they are using all their diplomatic skills to destroy their government’s case before the international community, and last week were in London ahead of an expected visit by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday.
Liel and Baruch are on a mission: to alert MPs and British Jews who support Israel to what is happening. They say the fate of 5.3 million Palestinians under occupation and the fate of Israeli Jews are both in the balance as Israel lurches towards an openly declared and law-based Jewish supremacy.
Al Jazeera's Abderrahim Foukara asks the former US defense secretary whether toppling Saddam Hussein was worth the many lives of those killed during and after the 2003 Iraq war.
Thousands of demonstrators have held a fresh protest across Tel Aviv in the occupied territories, blasting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for pressing on with his highly controversial and unpopular "judicial reforms."
The demonstration was held in the coastal city on Saturday evening for the 12th straight week after Netanyahu announced the so-called reforms that he claims seek to improve the balance of power between politicians and the regime's Supreme Court.
The changes are slated to rob the court of the power to overrule decisions made by Israel's new extremist cabinet and the Knesset. They will also enable lawmakers to override the court's rulings with a simple majority, while giving them a bigger say in the selection committee that appoints the judges.
Serbian Minister of Labour, Employment and Veteran and Social Affairs Nikola Selakovic laid a wreath at a memorial to children killed in the 1999 NATO aggression on Serbia, then part of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.
City of Belgrade Manager Miroslav Cuckovic, Russian Ambassador to Serbia Alexander Botsan-Kharchenko, Serbian Armed Forces and police representatives, the victims’ families and others also took part in the Tasmajdan Park ceremony in downtown Belgrade.
Annalena Baerbock has started her visit to Georgia with the meeting with the civil society representatives, followed by the meeting with her Georgian counterpart FM Darchiashvili.
According to the information by GYLA, civil society representatives focused on the issues related to human rights situation in Georgia and stressed that importance for Georgia of the receipt of the EU candidate’s status during their meeting with the German FM.
Annalena Baerbock then met with the Foreign Minister Darchiasvhili. At the press conference following the meeting Georgian FM stressed that Baerbock’s visit demonstrates Germany’s special interest in Georgia….According to Darchiashvili the sides discussed EU and NATO integration, as well as the regional security, including the situation in the occupied territories.
U.S. Army Lt. Col. Erica Kane, commander, Wiesbaden Army Health Clinic, Regional Health Command-Europe, speaks about women’s health and putting people first during a Women’s Health Question and Answer Panel….
International law died 24 years ago, Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic said on Friday at the main ceremony commemorating the anniversary of the start of the 1999 NATO aggression on Serbia, noting that, at the time, big powers had tried to break the Serbian spirit but had not broken it, and never would.
“Contemporary international law finally died 24 years ago – that sounds like an insignificant bureaucratic sentence, but it is much more than that,” he said.
“Since then, nothing that is going on in the world can be worse than what they did to a small country whose only fault was that it wanted to be independent on its own soil, free and freedom-loving and, as such, it was not liked by those who created a new order in 1989 and 1990, in which only they decided about everything, while the disobedient were to be punished,” Vucic said in Sombor, northwestern Serbia.