A Snapshot of 2020 Ugliness

By Stephen Lendman

Source

The most dismal year in the post-WW II period is likely a sign of worse to come.

When Biden/Harris replace Trump on January 20, endless wars on invented enemies and homeland dystopian harshness are virtually certain to continue, things likely to worsen.

Undemocratic Dems prioritize both.

During Obama/Biden’s tenure, seven countries were terror-bombed in eight years: Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Pakistan, Somalia, Syria and Yemen.

None of the above threatened the US. Throughout the post-WW II period, no nations anywhere threatened US security.

Yet Obama/Biden massacred hundreds of thousands of civilians during their tenure, displacing countless numbers more.

They recruited ISIS and other jihadists to serve as proxy fighters in US war theaters.

They force-fed neoliberal harshness on most Americans while increasing wealth for the nation’s privileged class.

They replaced democratic governments with despotic ones in Honduras, Paraguay, Brazil, and Ukraine. 

They waged war by other means on Bolivarian social democracy in Venezuela, wanting the country transformed into a fascist police state.

They murdered President Hugo Chavez by poisoning him.

They enforced fascist rule in Haiti against their long-suffering people.

They waged war by other means on all nations unwilling to sacrifice their sovereignty to US interests.

They supported privileged interests exclusively at home at the expense of governance serving everyone equitably — notions they abhorred, refused to tolerate, and it showed by their viciousness.

With lots of help from US dark forces, US election 2020 was stolen.

Trump won. Biden/Harris lost. Yet they’re president and vice president select, not elect.

On January 20, they’ll replace Trump — because brazen fraud assured it, things rigged well in advance.

Open, free and fair US elections are more myth than reality.

Dark forces run things, turning America into dystopia their diabolical agenda.

James Fetzer published Edward Hendrie’s report titled:

“Forensic Analysis of Dominion Voting Systems Discovers It Was Designed to Commit Election Fraud,” stressing the following:

An Allied Security Operations Group “conclude(d) that the Dominion Voting System is intentionally and purposefully designed with inherent errors to create systemic fraud and influence election results.” 

“The system intentionally generates an enormously high number of ballot errors.”

“The electronic ballots are then transferred for adjudication.” 

“The intentional errors lead to bulk adjudication of ballots with no oversight, no transparency, and no audit trail.” 

“This leads to voter or election fraud.”

When Biden/Harris are installed in office, they’ll serve illegitimately.

With mass media support, the US public was conned to believe otherwise.

Millions in the country don’t buy what no one should accept.

Democracy in America is pure fantasy, the way it’s been from inception.

If the real thing began emerging, it would be banned.

Dark forces in charge serve privileged interests and their own exclusively — at the expense of peace, equity, justice, the rule of law, and a nation safe and fit to live it.

Media supported mass deception convinced most Americans to accept the tyranny of lost freedoms from an invented pandemic.

It’s based on fear-mongering false claims by public health officials, an outbreak of seasonal flu/influenza that occurs annually called covid this year, and worthless PCR tests nearly always producing false positives, making them worthless.

We’ve been conned to accept vaccines to the rescue that are harmful to human health, not beneficial

A legitimate cure for covid/influenza has been suppressed by US/Western dark forces and their media press agents.

When used as directed within around 10 days of falling ill, cheap and safe hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) — combined with either azithromycin or doxycycline (both antibiotics) — and zinc are highly effective.

What should be widely endorsed is suppressed to promote hazardous to human health mass-vaxxing.

Big government, Pharma and their media press agents want information about HCQ suppressed.

They want its widespread availability reduced or eliminated altogether.

On December 24, Natural News.com reported the following:

“On Dec. 20, an SCI Pharmtech manufacturing facility in Taoyuan City, Taiwan, (suspiciously) burst into flames and exploded…”

It produces HCQ. Were pro-Western/pro-Pharma dark forces behind what happened?

“The SCI Pharmtech factory in question is the second-largest HCQ provider in Asia,” Natural News reported. 

It’s now “closed, meaning no more HCQ production for the time being.”

The timing of what happened raises obvious red flags. 

The incident happened as mass-vaxxing for promoted protection against against covid began that’s highly likely to cause widespread harm — along with a bonanza of profits for Pharma.

“Because HCQ is a competitor of COVID-19 vaccines, it…appear(s) that powerful entities (want it) squelch(ed) – including” by malicious intent that’s likely behind the incident.

What’s going on should terrify everyone.

Big Government in cahoots with monied interests and their press agent media are mortal enemies of public health and well-being.

That’s the disturbing reality of these troubled times that are highly likely to more greatly worsen ahead.

Promoting What’s Hazardous to Human Health

See the source image

By Stephen Lendman

Source

Along with other establishment media, the NYT is part of promoting the state-sponsored covid vaccine scam.

When used as directed, potential serious harm to human health may follow — why it’s essential to SAY NO!

Government officials, Pharma, and establishment media are part of a mass deception campaign that may cause serious harm to many vaxxed individuals.

In daily editions, the NYT is manipulating the public mind with a virtual blitzkrieg of state/Pharma-approved propaganda about covid and vaccines to the rescue that are dangerously experimental and high-risk.

Over the weekend, the Times featured well over a dozen covid vaccine propaganda pieces — so many I lost count.

They bombarded readers with misinformation, disinformation and Big Lies — risking serious harm to many believers.

Don’t be fooled. Ignore bad advice and stay safe.

Below are some of the Times’ propaganda headlines in its Sunday edition alone:

“Deaths (from covid) Rose in College Towns (sic)”

“First Coronavirus Vaccines Head to States, Starting Historic Effort (sic)”

“First US Vaccines Are About to Be Shipped as Virus Ravages America (sic)”

“UPS and FedEx say plans to ship the vaccine are underway”

“A CDC panel has endorsed the Pfizer vaccine for people 16 and over”

“With the first injections expected to be given as early as Monday, this is how states are preparing”

“The largest health care provider in the New York region is frantically prepping for the arrival of the vaccine”

“How Many (covid vaccine) Doses Will Your State Get?”

“This Is the Test of Our Lifetimes (sic)”

“It’s Time to Scare People About Covid (sic)”

“We Must Do More to Stop Dangerous Doctors in a Pandemic” — ones justifiably skeptical about face masks, social distancing and toxic vaccines.

On December 9, Times editors headlined: “The Coronavirus Vaccines Were Developed in Record Speed. Now, the Hard Part”

Claiming they’re safe and “95 percent effective at preventing illness” is part of an orchestrated mass deception campaign.

Operation Warp Speed is a diabolical hazardous to human health scam that promotes development and mass vaxxing with experimental drugs. 

They’ll enrich Pharma at the expense of potentially devastating consequences for many unsuspecting individuals being vaxxed for protection against covid they won’t get.

Times editors urged greater efforts by Washington and local governments to encourage, push hard for, and otherwise support harmful to health and welfare mass vaxxing, face masks and social distancing.

Will a follow-up Times editorial urge mandating all of the above?

The self-styled newspaper of record and other establishment media threw caution to the wind.

Ignoring potential serious hazards to public health and welfare, they’re promoting a widespread human experiment that may cause irreversible harm to countless numbers of people.

At a time of orchestrated mass deception, it’s crucial to be safe, not sorry.

CIA Partners with Google, Amazon and IBM in Latest Big Tech Procurement Drive

By Raul Diego

Source

The vaunted “17 intelligence agencies” that comprise the U.S. intel community will be sharing a network of private-sector cloud computing service providers which includes Microsoft, Google, Oracle, IBM, and Amazon Web Services (AWS) as part of a 15-year contract said to be worth tens of billions of dollars.

AWS currently holds the sole contract to provide cloud computing services to a number of intelligence agencies, including the FBI and the NSA. That contract is set to expire in 2023 and this new award – managed by the CIA – will further weaken Amazon’s once privileged position in the federal money sweepstakes, which had already taken a hard hit when Microsoft was unexpectedly chosen over Bezos’ company for the Department of Defense’s own cloud services contract for the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) program.

The Central Intelligence Agency will take full advantage of its access to money without oversight to disburse the government funds at the agency’s discretion. Although speculated to rise into the tens of billions, the CIA has no plans to disclose the real value of the C2E contracts. The Commercial Cloud Enterprise (C2E) procurement program was unveiled in February by the premier U.S. spy agency in a bid to establish a cloud computing service platform for the country’s intelligence agencies separate from JEDI, which remains enmeshed in a protracted legal contest with AWS and is two years behind implementation.

The five tech giants will compete with each other for “task orders” that come in from the multitude of intelligence agencies throughout the country and will span every security clearance level up to and including top secret clearance. The contract calls for the building of infrastructure and all other basic cloud services, as well as professional services and public-facing services.

The more things change…

Many seem surprised by the multi-contractor, ad hoc nature of the C2E awards because it “appears not to settle on a particular cloud provider” and while these dynamics do stray from the relatively recent trend of sole-contract awards and tacit monopolies many corporations have enjoyed through similar public-private partnerships, this particular practice of pitting contractors against each other for services requisitioned by the government is not new.

In fact, such practices are an intrinsic part of the military industrial complex and its historical origins at the height of the British empire. The start of the Glorious Revolution in 1688 marked the beginning of 125 years of constant war for the global superpower of the day and the slow but inexorable rise of an industry of war made up exclusively of freelancers who would make the guns, rifles, and bullets their bloodthirsty Queen required.

As the empire grew, the processes for the production of weapons underwent a dramatic change from artisanal modes to full-fledged factory-style production; all spurred by the biggest army and navy in the world, which was pillaging and extracting resources to fuel the burgeoning enterprise of capitalism.

Workers at the Royal Ordnance Factory in Liverpool, England inspect the finished Sten guns. Photo | Imperial War Musuem

This period also fine-tuned the relationship between the state and independent contractors, with the former establishing laws governing them in order to leverage their overwhelming advantage. Other strategies were also employed to both suppress the price the Crown paid for materiel and to make sure that no single contractor held too big a stake in the supply chain.

In her book “Empire of Guns,” Priya Satia details this entire process and destroys the myth that the Industrial Revolution was the result of a cotton-picking machine when even a cursory look at the history shows that it was guns and a state engaged in perpetual war that laid the foundations of our current economic paradigm.

Now, we stand on the threshold of the so-called “Fourth Industrial Revolution” in a world that has perfected weapons of war to atomic levels. New ‘cyberweapons’ are being forged and it is only fitting that the war industry, led today by the United States, would return to its origins to maintain its own monopoly on human suffering and devastation in the name of profit.

Return to the roots

The public-private partnership has been another significant trend that also mirrors a ubiquitous trend in Victorian England. But, in today’s world, a parallel legal system has grown alongside the state’s war industry and is also now at the disposal of the corporations who wish to dispute any deal, leading to considerable delays in the execution of contracts.

Cases like the JEDI suit affect the military readiness goals of the national security state if it cannot move forward with a particular initiative due to litigation. Another recent case is holding up the Cybersecurity Infrastructure and Security Agency’s (CISA) efforts to centralize inflow and outflow of data regarding cyber-threats.

In October, the Government Services Agency (GSA), awarded a $13 Million-dollar contract to a company called EnDyna to “create a centralized database that agencies can use to report, discover and take actions against cyber threat information.” A much larger competitor, HackerOne, filed a protest questioning the award on grounds of failure to meet eligibility requirements and the smaller company’s competence to carry out the work.

Technicalities like these can hold up a project in court for years, so it makes perfect sense for the state-run war industry to return to its roots and apply the tried and true principles of divide and conquer against the people making their guns, whether real or virtual. By taking the first few spots on the Big Tech pecking order and putting them in a room to duke it out for a government contract, the war establishment is recognizing the growing power of these firms and is unleashing the CIA to curb it and diminish threats to the supply chain of the twenty-first century’s permanent war economy.

From Assassinations to Sanctions: Emergency Powers and the Rise of the Imperial Presidency

By Raul Diego

Source

A decades-long push to concentrate power in the Oval Office through emergency response legislation has made the Office of the President more powerful than ever.

On the eve of the 2020 election, no American president has enjoyed more unrestrained power than Donald J. Trump, who has inherited decades of policies and legislation that have given the American head of state the ability to suspend all constitutional rights and habeas corpus for its own citizens, carry out assassinations, torture prisoners and impose sanctions on sovereign nations, to name just a few of the 120 discretionary emergency “powers” the office currently has at its disposal.

Trump has invoked emergency powers, at least, eight times during his administration. Simply declaring an emergency makes all sorts of constitutional violations possible. Depending on which sphere of political power requires a form of executive intervention, the president has a bevy of “emergency” options at his disposal beyond the reach of Congress or any other mitigating factors. His decision to assassinate Iranian general, Qassem Soleimani, was one such example where the 2002 Authorization for Use of Military Force, also known as the War Powers Act, was cited as a legal justification for the general’s murder.

The War Powers Act is but one of many legal “emergency power” dispositions increasingly afforded to the office of the presidency. A recent article by Andrew Cockburn in Harper’s Magazine highlights a little-known set of documents drafted by the Department of Justice’s Office of Legal Counsel called presidential emergency action documents or PEADs, which detail the actions a president is unilaterally entitled to take in the event of a declared emergency. These include all the constitutional violations mentioned above as well as a president’s prerogative to “seize control of the Internet” among other measures.

PEADs have been kept from the American public, but are common knowledge among critical White House staff and other government officials. According to Cockburn, PEADs have been gradually accumulating over the years as an “integral part” of the Continuity of Government or COG program; an emergency plan hatched deep in the bowels of the post-war state to protect the edifice of power, which established a shadow government and other ’emergency powers’ justified by the threat of nuclear annihilation, incessantly propagandized during the Cold War; the ultimate emergency from which all others would spring to pave the way for the incremental concentration of power in the executive.

Mein Führer, I can walk!

At the end of Stanley Kubrick’s “Dr. Strangelove or How I Learned to Love the Bomb,” the crippled Nazi character after whom the movie is named, miraculously regains his ability to walk just as a nuclear conflagration engulfs the world. Fascism thrives when panic and fear reign supreme, allowing critical circumstances – whether real or manufactured – to justify the evisceration of civil liberties and human rights.

he American national security state that developed in the post-war period has found one ’emergency’ after another to drive through policies and legislation that serve its interests. The office of the president is the logical target for a vast military industrial complex that needs to steer clear of Congressional oversight or public scrutiny in order to maintain control over its hugely profitable and immoral war enterprises.

After the tumultuous 1960s, which exposed many of the darkest secrets of the American national security apparatus and all of its murderous tentacles, the establishment experienced an existential crisis as powerful, grassroots social movements emerged to put real pressure on the governing elites to answer for their actions and find remedies for patently unequal rights in America. The anti-war movement, along with the revelations of the Church Committee, Watergate, and the extent to which presidents had used so-called emergency powers to circumvent Congress and the constitution, shed the pretense of democracy.

A futile effort to curb presidential emergency powers by the Special Committee on the Termination of the National Emergency in the early 1970s, which Frank Church co-chaired, was soon followed by an expansion of these powers in the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA) of 1977, enabling the president to declare national emergencies based on very broad criteria of “extraordinary circumstances.”

The style council

The IEEPA allows whoever is in the Oval Office to unilaterally and without evidence of wrongdoing, impose sanctions on entire countries or single individuals. The law has since been used as the framework for other emergency authorization protocols, such as the legal device used by the U.S. Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control to freeze any American’s bank account without any meaningful explanation.

It was this piece of legislation that George W. Bush used as a basis for Executive Order 13224, which blocked the assets of terrorist organizations. These same powers were enhanced in provisions of the Patriot Act, itself another piece of ’emergency’ legislation. Bush was the first president to actually implement the shadow government proscribed in the COG procedures after September 11, 2001.

There are currently more than 30 active declared “emergencies,” many of which go back decades. In the opening paragraph of the report issued by Church’s Special Committee on the Termination of the National Emergency, the authors conceded that “a majority of Americans alive today have lived all of their lives under emergency rule.” This sobering conclusion is far more relevant today, almost 40 years later, when each subsequent administration has done its part to expand the president’s authority. None more so than Barack Obama, who dramatically expanded presidential emergency powers with two executive orders in 2012, which decreed almost monarchical powers over the whole of U.S energy and transportation infrastructure, domestic resources like food and water, the authority to force citizens to “fulfill labor requirements for the purposes of national defense” and the takeover of private communications networks by DHS.

All of these and more powers are currently in the hands of Donald Trump, whose style may rub some people the wrong way. But, they won’t be rescinded by the next administration. Indeed, now that the office of the presidency is a de facto dictatorship, style is really all that’s left.

المجمع العسكري ـ الصناعي الأميركي ورسائل ترامب تجاه البنتاغون

معن بشور

في معرض الردّ على تصريحات منسوبة إليه يهاجم فيها الجنود الأميركيين فتح الرئيس الأميركي النار على قادة البنتاغون قائلاً: ربما يكون كبار المسؤولين في البنتاغون لا يحبونني لأنهم لا يريدون فعل شيء سوى خوض الحروب، ولذا فإنّ كلّ تلك الشركات الرائعة التي تصنع القنابل والطائرات وكلّ شيء آخر ستكون سعيدة.”

وجاءت هذه الإشارة السلبية من ترامب تجاه البنتاغون في سياق عملية تجاذب منذ ان هدّد ترامب باستخدام قانون التمرّد للاستعانة بقوات إنفاذ القانون خلال الاحتجاجات التي أعقبت وفاة المواطن من أصول أفريقية جورج فلويد على يد أحد ضباط الشرطة في جريمة وحشية ما زالت تداعياتها مستمرة حتى اليوم.

يومها أعرب الجنرال مايك بيلي رئيس هيئة الأركان المشتركة عن أسفه لانه سار مع ترامب في ساحة لافييت.

ويعتبر هذا السجال المتصاعد بين الرئيس الأميركي وكبار جنرالاته الذين عيّنهم بنفسه، كما عيّن أيضاً وزير الدفاع مارك اسبر (الذي كان مسؤولاً تنفيذياً ومقاول دفاع في شركة “رايثيون” التي تعدّ من أكبر الشركات المتخصصة في أنظمة الدفاع) تعبيراً جديداً عن عمق الأزمة البنيوية التي يعيشها النظام الأميركي، كما كان يردّد دائماً أخي وصديقي الدكتور زياد حافظ منذ عشرين عاماً، والتي يبدو أنها على ملامح انفجار كبير مع الانتخابات الرئاسية الأميركية في اوائل نوفمبر/ تشرين الثاني المقبل حيث يعلن الطرفان الجمهوري والديمقراطي رفضهما منذ الآن لنتائج الانتخابات اذا لم تأت لصالحه الى درجة انّ أحد كبار المسورلين في الحزب الديمقراطي قد أشار الى دعوة القوات المسلحة الأميركية الى إخراج ترامب من البيت الأبيض في حال رفضه الاعتراف بهزيمته.

لكن هذا السجال المستجدّ بين البيت الابيض والبنتاغون، المضاف الى سلسلة سجالات تملأ الساحة السياسية والشعبية والاقتصادية والاجتماعية الأميركية، يذكر بمقولة ردّدها الجنرال دوايت ايزنهاور رئيس الولايات المتحدة بين عام 1952 -1960، عشية مغادرته البيت الابيض محذراَ من مخاطر “المجمع العسكري الصناعي على الدولة الأميركية وسعيه لانتهاج سياسات حربية تؤمّن لشركات السلاح موارد لا تنضب، فيما تؤمّن هذه الشركات وظائف مجزية لكبار الجنرالات بعد مغادرتهم الخدمة العسكرية.

اليوم يأتي ترامب، وهو رئيس “جمهوري” أيضاً، كما ايزنهاور، ليشير الى هذه العلاقة بين كبار الجنرالات وكبار المقاولين في تعبير عن غضبه من عدم تجاوب البنتاغون مع خططه بإعاد انتشار القوات العسكرية الأميركية خارج الولايات المتحدة (وهو مطلب يرتاح اليه المواطن الأميركي)، كما لعدم تجاوبه مع رغبته بتطبيق قانون التمرّد الذي يضع بنظر أميركيين كثر، أكثريتهم من البيض، حداً للفوضى الأمنية التي تعيشها المدن والبلدات الأميركية منذ أشهر.

لا شك انّ هذه التحوّلات تستحقّ دراسة معمّقة على أكثر من صعيد، ولكن لا بدّ من دراستها على مستوى تداعياتها على حجم النفوذ الأميركي خارج الولايات المتحدة، وخصوصاً في بلادنا، حيث ما زال الكثير من الحكام والمحللين أسرى تحليل قديم يرى بأنّ “واشنطن قدر”، وأنّ سياستها تمتلك من القوة ما لا يسمح لأحد بمواجهتها.

انّ اشارة ترامب الى العلاقة بين كبار الجنرالات وكبار المقاولين، مجدّداً تحذيرات سلفه في الرئاسة والحزب الجمهوري، دوايت ايزنهاور، من تغوّل “المجمع’ الصناعي العسكري، الذي لا يستبعد بعض المحللين دوره في جريمة اغتيال الرئيس الديمقراطي جون فيتزجرالد كنيدي عام ١٩٦٣، وشقيقه روبرت عام ١٩٦٦، ليصبح الأمر تماماً بقبضة “المجمع” الذي لم يتوقف عن شنّ الحروب على شعوب العالم، وبشكل خاص على الشعوب العربية والإسلامية…

انها قراءة من خارج السياق، ولكنها ضرورية لكي نفهم أكثر السياسة الأميركية في منطقتنا او بالأحرى اللاسياسة الأميركية التي لا تحركها إلا مصالح الكيان الصهيوني وأمنه…

انها قراءة ضرورية لكلّ من يضع كلّ أوراقه بالسلة الأميركية وهو التحليل الذي أدخل الأمة كلها منذ عام 1977(زيارة السادات للكنيست) في اتفاقات متعدّدة باسم “السلام” الذي لم ينجب سوى الحروب لهذه المنطقة…

الأمين العام السابق للمؤتمر القومي العربي

All Vaccines Are Unsafe. Russia’s Sputnik V COVID-19 Vaccine Now Available

By Stephen Lendman

Source

On August 11, Russia registered the first vaccine for use against COVID-19, named Sputnik V. More on this development below.

Toxins in vaccines make them hazardous to human health.

Time and again, they cause diseases they’re promoted as protection against.

Nothing in medical science indicates that vaccines are safe.

They all contain harmful to health mercury, aluminum, formaldehyde, phenoxyethanol (antifreeze), MSG, and squalene adjuvants that weaken and can destroy the human immune system, making it vulnerable to many annoying to life-threatening illnesses.

Annually, the US Vaccine Adverse Reporting System (VAERS) reports thousands of serious adverse vaccine reactions, including many deaths and disabling disabilities.

Virtually none of this is reported by establishment media.

Far too often, vaccines are ineffective or not effective enough. They’re an unreliable way to prevent illness and disease.

Proper health, personal hygiene, and sanitation practices are far more effective than mass-vaxxing.

An earlier WHO report said disease and mortality rates in developing countries were closely related to hygiene and dietary practices, unrelated to immunization programs.

In the West and elsewhere, no evidence links vaccines with declines in infectious diseases.

Although vaccines stimulate antibody production, no evidence suggests that alone assures immunity.

Squalene adjuvants and other toxins in vaccines harm the human immune system, making it susceptible to numerous illnesses and diseases that range from very annoying to life threatening.

The notion of herd immunity from mass-vaxxing is Big Pharma promoted rubbish.

Numerous industry promoted “facts” about vaccines were later proved false.

Childhood disease dangers are greatly exaggerated to scare parents into getting their children vaccinated with unsafe drugs.

Following the introduction of the Salk polio vaccine, large outbreaks of the disease were reported in the US.

Years later, Jonas Salk admitted that mass inoculations caused most polio cases.

Even when no adverse reactions occur days or even weeks after being inoculated, evidence shows longer-term problems developed.

They include the disease vaxxing is supposed to protect against, chronic headaches, rashes, skin lesions, seizures, autism, anemia, multiple sclerosis, ALS, cancer, diabetes, and many other health issues.

US federal, state, and local immunization policy is driven by politics and profit potential, not science or concern for human health and welfare.

According to earlier industry estimates before coronavirus outbreaks occurred this year, the market potential for vaccines was estimated at around $60 billion annually.

If when available, a full COVID-19 vax treatment of all Americans would have a market potential dollar volume of around $150 billion of near-all profit, according to one estimate.

The global market potential is much greater — why the race is on to cash in big.

Noted vaccine expert Dr. Viera Schiebner minced no words, saying the following:

“There is no evidence whatsoever of the ability of vaccines to prevent any diseases.” 

“To the contrary, there is a great wealth of evidence that they cause serious side effects.”

Many other scientific experts agree.

Russia’s Sputnik V is the first vaccine available for use against COVID-19 — registered by the Russian Ministry of Health on August 11.

Developed by Russia’s  Gamaleya Research Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology, it followed over 20 years of vaccine research, according to Sechenov University’s Institute for Translational Medicine and Biotechnology director Vadim Tarasov.

Technology used to develop Sputnik V is based upon adenovirus, the common cold.

Tarasov explained that the vaccine may not entirely stop COVID-19 from spreading. He claimed it’ll make symptoms milder, adding:

“We can really talk about a breakthrough as our country has shown itself to be one of the leaders in the global pharmaceutical industry due to the fact that it has retained and developed new competencies in drug development.”

Russia’s sputnikvaccine.com website explained the following:

“In 1957, the successful launch of the first man-made satellite by the Soviet Union activated space research in the entire world,” adding: 

“Thanks to this comparison, the vaccine received the name of Sputnik V” to note another “Sputnik moment.”

Information on the website aims to dispel Western media disinformation already begun.

Will Russia’s Sputnik V prove safe and effective in immunizing against COVID-19?

The fullness of time will tell what’s very much unknown now.

A Final Comment

As expected, establishment media mocked Sputnik V.

The NYT accused Russia of  “cutting corners on testing to score political and propaganda points,” citing no evidence backing its claim.

The Washington Post accused Moscow of “jumping dangerously ahead of” larger-scale testing to make a COVID-19 vaccine available ahead of ones being developed in the West.

The Wall Street Journal said Russia registered the “world’s first Covid-19 vaccine despite safety concerns.”

Other establishment media made similar comments — demeaning Russia’s development while promoting undeveloped/yet to be available Big Pharma vaccines.

With billions of dollars of market potential up for grabs, it’s no surprise that establishment media are supporting development of Western vaccines for COVID-19 over alternatives from Russia, China, and other countries.

 

“Charity” Accused of Sex Abuse Coordinating ID2020’s Pilot Program For Refugee Newborns

By Whitney Webb

Source

A biometric identification program backed by the ID2020 alliance will see its new “digital id” program rolled out for refugee newborns in close coordination with a charity tied to Wall Street and prominent Western politicians whose workers have been accused of sexually exploiting refugee children.

iRespond, an international non-profit organization that is “dedicated to using biometrics to improve lives through digital identity,” has begun piloting a new biometric program for newborns among the predominately Karen refugee population along the Myanmar-Thailand border, a program it soon hopes to “quickly deploy” at a greater scale and make available to the general global population. The pilot program is being conducted as part of the controversial ID2020 alliance, backed by Microsoft, the GAVI vaccine alliance and the Rockefeller Foundation, and with the International Rescue Committee (IRC), a non-profit organization deeply tied to the Western political elite and Wall Street with a controversial track record of silencing numerous sex abuse and fraud allegations.

The new program, an extension of iRespond’s “voluntary” biometric identification program in the Mae La refugee camp, “will create a record of a birth, attested by a trusted clinic, with a goal of changing the life trajectory for the participants.” Through the program, “a guardianship relationship between the newborn and the mother is established and linked to digital and high security physical identity documents.”

However, iRespond’s CEO, Scott Reid, told Biometric Update that these credentials do “not carry the same weight as a true birth certificate,” but asserts that the organization’s biometric “birth attestation” program “could leapfrog the traditional barriers to establishing identity.” Despite the fact that iRespond’s quasi-birth certificates would seemingly serve little purpose in areas where actual birth certificates are readily available, the organization notes that “once the pilot is completed, iRespond is ready to quickly deploy the solution at scale” for mass use around the globe. “Product development” on adapting their platform for newborns began earlier this year and Reid notes that having an iRespond-provided biometric “birth attestation” will enable “access to vital services such as healthcare, social protection, education and banking.”

The pilot program is being conducted at the Mae Tao clinic, which is largely funded by the CIA cut-out USAID as well as the governments of Germany and Taiwan, the Open Society Foundations and the International Rescue Committee (IRC). The IRC is very active in the day-to-day functions of the clinic (financed by a USAID-funded project) and it is also intimately involved in iRespond’s digital identity program, including its new pilot program for newborns and its earlier efforts to supply Mae La’s residents with biometric identity.

Food or Sovereignty

iRespond’s work in Mae La in conjunction with IRC was first announced by the ID2020 alliance in September 2018. The ID2020-funded pilot program, the announcement states, was to be “led by Alliance partner iRespond and will be conducted in close partnership with the International Rescue Committee (IRC).” It aims to provide biometric identities to the approximately 35,000 individuals inhabiting the area, with the newer program aiming to ensure that babies born in the community are also made participants by default upon birth. It notes specifically that “the pilot will offer blockchain-based digital identification, linked to individual users through iris recognition, for refugees accessing the IRC’s services in the Mae La Camp in Thailand.” Having a “digital identity” would allow refugees “to access improved, consistent healthcare within the camp” with plans for the same system to eventually “electronically document both educational attainment and professional skills to aid with employment opportunities.”

Migrant workers pass the Thai-Myanmar border in an official service truck as they leave Thailand from Mae Sot in Tak province in northern Thailand. Photo: AFP/Ye Aung Thu

A year later, the program, featured in a lengthy profile in Newsweek, was revealed to be “just the first step in an effort that aims to equip the camp’s entire refugee population with secure and portable “digital wallets” that will hold not just their medical records but also educational and vocational credentials, camp work histories and myriad other records,” ostensibly including financial activity. This is particularly likely given that iRespond is partnered with Mastercardanother ID2020 partner that is closely allied with the company, Trust Stamp, a biometric identity platform that also doubles as a vaccine record and payment system. In addition, IRC’s strategic plans for Mae La through 2020 include “expand[ing] micro-enterprise development and village savings and loans associations,” such as those offered by ID2020 partner Kiva, among others, who link biometric identity to the receipt of loans.

iRespond’s system, not unlike Trust Stamp’s, is also slated to serve as a vaccine record. Larry Dohr, iRespond’s head of Southeast Asia operations, told Reuters in April that “a biometric ID system can keep a record of such people [who have previously tested positive for Covid-19] and those getting the vaccine.” Dohr added that “we can biometrically identify the individual and tie them to the test results, as well as to a high security document. The person then has ‘non-refutable’ proof that they have immunity due to antibodies in their system.” Dohr then refers to such “proof” as a “very valuable credential.”

Notably, in press releases and news reports, iRespond executives emphasize how their biometric identity system, based on iris scans and powered by Microsoft, will “protect privacy” and allow “control and ownership of identity data belong to the holder.” However, the Mae La project does not offer this degree of control and ownership, with Newsweek noting that“Eventually, [iRespond and their collaborators] aim to offer the refugees a level of fine-grained control over what pieces of personal information are shared with others.” In other words, such control over their personal information has not yet been made available to them, despite the public portrayal that this functionality is a base component of iRespond’s system.

What is particularly noteworthy about iRespond’s and IRC’s digital identity efforts is that, while it is a “voluntary” program, destitute refugees wishing to access healthcare and other services IRC provides in the area, including access to clean water, must have their irises scanned in order to reap those benefits. It is highly unlikely that such individuals are not only uninformed about any potential risks of providing their biometrics for use in a pilot program, but are not in a stable enough state to make an informed decision on the matter, as their precarious position would see them choose urgent healthcare needs, etc. over privacy. It increasingly seems that Mae La was chosen as the pilot project because its residents were highly unlikely to decline participation, especially when healthcare access and other basic needs provided by IRC are dangled as carrots on a stick and only accessible upon participation in iRespond’s biometric identity program.

This program is remarkably similar to the World Food Programme’s recently implemented “Building Blocks” initiative, which  is funded by the US, German, Dutch and Luxembourgian governments. Building Blocks uses a blockchain-based biometric identity system “to expand refugees’ choices in how they access and spend their cash assistance” in Syrian refugee camps within Jordan. Now, “over 100,000 people living in the camps can purchase groceries by scanning an iris at checkout” as part of the checkout. Those who do not participate are unable to access their WFP “cash benefits” since they are available exclusively through this biometric system, leaving refugees the choice between surrendering their biometric data and food.

Equally noteworthy is the fact that those financially supporting the Mae La project and similar projects, particularly the ID2020 alliance, are “hopeful” that iRespond’s efforts in Mae La will some day be rolled out on a global scale. Indeed,Newsweek noted that “many of the funders [of the Mae La project]—part of what’s known as the ID2020 alliance, which includes Accenture, Microsoft and the Rockefeller Foundation—hope the Mae La project could eventually serve as a blueprint for the world’s millions of stateless people, as well as citizens of developed nations and everyone else.”

Biometric Enclosure

According to iRespond’s rather spartan website, their biometric identity platform “primarily relies on iris biometrics, the best modality after DNA for accuracy and reliability.” It further describes its platform as follows:

“When a new participant is enrolled, an encrypted biometric template is created from their iris scan and a randomly assigned 12-digit number is drawn from a pool of 90 billion numbers. On subsequent visits, the identity of the participant is verified when their template is matched and the system returns the original 12-digit unique identifier.”

iRespond’s platform also “easily integrates into healthcare, humanitarian aid, research, and human-rights applications,” and it has been used to grant refugees and other vulnerable populations access to food, healthcare, and other forms of aid provided by foreign NGOs operating in these areas. It has also been used to keep track of participants in clinical drug trials. iRespond’s platform in the latter case was used by the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in conjunction with Johns Hopkins School of Public Health (both are iRespond partners), to track participants in clinical HIV treatment trials in Senegal as well as an additional Johns Hopkins study in South Africa. It has also been used to track recipients of the controversial HPV vaccine in Sierra Leone, where it was used “to track patients who have not completed their vaccination series.”

It is also being used among “vulnerable groups” in Myanmar by the NGO Population Services International (PSI) to “track demographics and the timing of positive HIV tests.” By analyzing these details, “we uncover which groups are most vulnerable to becoming infected,” according to PSI’s country representative for Myanmar.

The non-profit’s platform is powered by its main tech partner and another ID2020 member, Microsoft. iRespond’s platform “couldn’t exist without the cloud,” according to its CEO Scott Reid, and Microsoft supplies iRespond with a $60,000 grant to its Azure cloud system, allowing the organization to use it free of charge. In addition, Microsoft donated 39 tablets to iRespond that are used by the organization in the various places it operates “to enable flexibility in the field.” “The number of people we have helped has rapidly gone from the tens of thousands to the hundreds of thousands, and we look forward to soon working on behalf of many millions of people. These Microsoft tools are helping to make it possible,” iRespond’s Larry Dohr stated in a Microsoft profile.

Eric Rasmussen·TEDxSanJuanIsland

Eric Rasmussen, iRespond’s president and chairman of the board, is a particularly interesting character who has been quite frank about the rationale behind the creation of iRespond. “When you understand who someone is, you understand what they’re entitled to, whether that’s national citizenship, international refugee support, or simply food distributions,” Rasmussen told Microsoft last year.

In addition to his key role at iRespond, Rasmussen is a professor at the Google-backed “Singularity University” as well as chairman of the board at InSTEDD, a “global NGO specializing humanitarian informatics, particularly around health in resource-poor economies” that is partnered with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, the CDC, Google and UNICEF. In addition, Rasmussen is also the CEO of a “profit-for-purpose” company called Infinitum Humanitarian Systems (IHS). IHS works closely with USAID and the State Department as well as U.S. military intelligence agencies and intelligence/defense contractor Booz Allen Hamilton. Prior to his roles at iRespond, IHS and InSTEDD, Rasmussen was the Principal Investigator in humanitarian informatics for the Pentagon’s Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) and made multiple war time deployments to Bosnia, Iraq and Afghanistan.

“Charity” of the Predator Class

More troubling than the background and associations of iRespond are those of their partner in the recently announced newborn biometric identification initiative, the International Rescue Committee (IRC). The IRC describes themselves as responding “to the world’s worst humanitarian crises and help[ing] people whose lives and livelihoods are shattered by conflict and disaster to survive, recover and gain control of their future.”

Despite the IRC framing itself as a “humanitarian” venture, its board is stuffed with a sordid mix of Wall Street criminals and war criminals. For example, its board is co-chaired by Timothy Geithner, former Treasury Secretary during the 2008 financial crisis bail-outs and current President of Wall Street titan Warburg-Pincus, and Susan Susman, an Executive Vice President at Pfizer. Its board of advisers includes war criminals Henry Kissinger and Madeleine Albright as well as Condoleezza Rice and Colin Powell. Also present are current and former leaders and top executives at McKinsey, Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, Kroll Associates (“the CIA of Wall Street”), PepsiCo, Bank of America, Lehman Brothers, Citigroup and the World Bank. Another advisor is former chairman and CEO of AIG Maurice “Hank” Greenberg, a name that will likely be familiar to those who have researched the September 11th attacks and Wall Street financial crimes in general.

Since 2013, the IRC has been led by David Miliband, the Tony Blair “protégé” who Bill Clinton once called “one of the ablest, most creative public servants of our time” and who worked closely with then-U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton while serving as the U.K.’s Foreign Secretary. So close was Miliband to the Clintons, that he was being considered for a “top U.S. government job” if Hillary Clinton had won the 2016 election.

In the years since joining the IRC, Miliband’s salary as the group’s president has ballooned to nearly a million dollars annually (up from approximately $240,000 when he arrived at the organization in 2013). In addition, the group has been mired in scandal since Miliband became its president. For instance, it was revealed in 2018 that IRC was one of several U.K.-based charities where “workers [were] alleged to be in sexually exploitative relationships with refugee children” including through “sex-for-food scandals” where “sexual abuse was so endemic that the only way for many refugee families to survive was to allow a teenage girl to be exploited.” Reports further alleged that IRC and other charities named in the report, including Save the Children, had known of the egregious abuse for years prior to the allegations being made public and chose not to act.

Myanmar refugees, who crossed over from Myanmar to Thailand when a battle erupted between Myanmar’s soldiers and rebels, eat at the Thai-Myanmar border town of Mae Sot November 8, 2010. A clash erupted between ethnic minority Karen rebels and government soldiers in Myanmar’s Myawaddy town opposite the Thai border town of Mae Sot, Reuters witnesses on the Thai side of the border said. REUTERS/Chaiwat Subprasom (THAILAND – Tags: POLITICS CIVIL UNREST) – RTXUDI7

That year, it was also found that the IRC had “silenced 37 sex abuse, fraud and bribery allegations,” resulting in the U.K. government, which had previously funneled millions to the organization, cutting off its funding entirely. Despite the troubling revelations, no IRC workers accused of wrong-doing were ever prosecuted.

Given the fact that the IRC’s board and presidency is stuffed with professional exploiters, from Wall Street to the public sector, it is hardly surprising that this “charity” would be caught doing the same under the guise of providing “aid” to the world’s most vulnerable populations, who they apparently view as easy prey.

Foxes in the Hen House

In the several media profiles of the iRespond-IRC biometric identity effort, the initiative is described as helping to prevent the exploitation of the world’s most vulnerable, particularly forced labor and sex trafficking. However, if that really were the case, why is this program being executed by iRespond, whose president and chairman has close ties to the U.S. military and intelligence communities, and the IRC, backed by a legion of war criminals and financial predators?

The U.S. military, a close partner of iRespond’s Eric Rasmussen, is notorious for its role in the trafficking of persons for forced labor, while many of its key contractors – like DynCorp — have been the subject of numerous scandalsregarding the sexual abuse or sex trafficking of war-torn or otherwise vulnerable populations. On the other hand, the IRC’s mix of backers like Madeleine Albright, infamous for her comment on the murder by sanctions of half a million Iraqi children being “worth it,” and Henry Kissinger, notorious for his words about using food as a weapon to force populations into subservience and to reduce third-world populations, is equally anathema to the publicly professed purpose of the iRespond-IRC biometric identification program.

Not unlike the “sex-for-food” scandal in which IRC was once embroiled, this new initiative is placing refugees in the position of taking part in a massive technocratic experiment if they wish to eat or access other basic services. Though certainly not as egregious as a sex crime, it is nonetheless another means of exploiting the world’s most vulnerable populations under the guise of “helping” them, when those really being aided are the technocratic elite who aim to take this biometric identification program global in short order.

Coronavirus and the Failed American State

By Margaret Kimberley

Source

Coronavirus Task Force 36250

The United States has none of the systems or infrastructure that would allow it to accomplish what China has done to fight mass infection.

The only thing more frightening than the COVID-19 virus spreading around the world is the knowledge that this country is woefully unprepared to protect people from it. The response to the epidemic would be funny if it were not so dangerous. First, the austerity regime cut the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) division responsible for fighting infectious disease outbreaks. But condemning Donald Trump’s decision making is the easy part. Analyzing bigger issues regarding health care and the inherent inefficiencies created by capitalism is much harder.

We are constantly told that socialism doesn’t work. But it is socialist China, where the virus began, that has made the most headway in slowing its spread. Conversely, the United States has none of the systems or infrastructure that would allow it to accomplish the same thing. It is capitalism that doesn’t work well when human needs must be met.

There is a constant demand to designate the United States as the best country in the world with the best health care system. In fact health care delivery here is nowhere near being best. The for-profit system certainly rakes in cash for insurance companies and big pharma. But health care outcomes are mediocre at best and other countries do a far better job for far less money. The most basic needs of patients and health care workers are often unmet. Health care workers complain they haven’t received proper training to protect themselves even as they treat COVID-19 patients.

While Italy, another capitalist nation, has been placed off limits because of the high number of COVID-19 cases, China reports declines in new infections and improvements in treatment protocols. While Americans can’t find hand sanitizer at any price, the Chinese government built new hospitals in just one week’s time.

The profit motive which is constantly touted as the cure all in every situation is instead the cause of every problem. There are other nations which allow private health insurers to operate but they regulate how much money they can make and how they can operate.

The so-called greatest country passes up no opportunity to allow the predators to extract from their victims. The failed state doesn’t have enough of the tests needed to diagnose COVID-19 and those who manage to be tested and treated can be charged up to $3,000for what ought to be a right and free of charge.

Nearly every solution presented as addressing this crisis places burdens on the people. The “gig” economy and low wage hourly jobs don’t allow workers to take time off if they feel ill. The high price of health care is an impediment to treating all kinds of illnesses. The man whom the Democratic Party establishment want to be the next president brags that he would veto any effort to provide free health care for all. It is little wonder that Americans lag in every measure of good health and panic when a new communicable disease makes an appearance.

While the highly touted capitalist system can’t provide enough hand sanitizer the governor of New York came up with a solution. Andrew Cuomo announced that the state will produce hand sanitizer made by prison labor. The product called NYS Clean will be provided to public agencies in the state. The inmates at Great Meadow Correctional Facility are paid between 16 and 65 cents for their work. It is typical for the United States to turn to its most exploitative system to meet a basic need.

The irony isn’t lost on anyone who is paying attention. The greatest nation cuts the public resource which would have mitigated the effects of COVID-19, continues its profit making system that causes suffering even as it is supposed to bring health, and then uses prison slave labor to do what the much vaunted system cannot.

Donald Trump famously referred to global south nations as “shithole countries.” In fact the shithole country is the one that he governs. The United States excels in putting people behind bars, as the New York inmates can attest. It can make weapons and invade nations. The police kill more people and the cost of health care is the worst in the world. But woe unto us if we need to save our lives from illness. COVID-19 is a new illness presenting new problems, but this country doesn’t care for its people in the best of times. COVID-19 is again making that clear.

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