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  • When Israel Bombed AP’s Gaza Office

    All Global Research articles can be read in 51 languages by activating the Translate Website button below the author’s name (only available in desktop version).

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    Global Research Wants to Hear From You!

    ***

    Wednesday was Nakba Day—the day commemorating the expulsion of 750,000 Palestinians with the creation of Israel, in 1948—but there was another anniversary worth remembering. The day a foreign country bombed the offices of a major U.S. press outlet, accusing it, without evidence, of harboring terrorists. And a significant portion of the US media spun the story to support the foreign country.

    On May 15, 2021, as part of its “Operation Guardian of the Walls” military campaign in Gaza, Israel bombed the Associated Press offices’ building, based on the still evidence-free claim that the AP headquarters “housed Hamas”. According to the Committee to Protect Journalists, the week prior, IDF bombed two other office buildings that “housed more than a dozen international and local media outlets.”



    Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) gave the tenants of the al-Jalaa Building in Gaza—which included AP, other news agencies including Al-Jazeera, and residential homes—a stern warning. IDF informed them they had one hour to evacuate their homes before the building would be bombed by Israeli missiles. Sixty minutes and three Israeli missiles later, the 12-story building was leveled to the ground.

    The IDF posted a short vague statement that provided no evidence for their claim the building was being used by terrorists but made sure to repeat the term “Hamas terror organization” four times, in just four sentences—five times if you count “Hamas military intelligence” in the headline.



    The AP’s CEO at the time, Gary Pruitt, said the news agency had been in the building for 15 years and “we have had no indication Hamas was in the building or active in the building.”

    So could Israel have been lying? Well, retired US Army colonel and former chief of staff to Secretary of State Colin Powell, Lawrence Wilkerson seems to think so.



    Let me let me preface these remarks with I never, never, ever believe Israeli figures. I’ve been in the government too long to know that the Israelis are patent liars in their intelligence community, in their propaganda community, certainly, and in their leadership. They are inveterate liars. Let me say that again. They are liars. So you can’t believe anything that comes out of Jerusalem. It’s all propaganda.

    The fact that Israel lied to the international press just one week prior about a fake ground invasion, to trick Hamas into giving up their positions, doesn’t help Israel’s case. On the contrary, it clearly shows that Israel puts military victory over truth, and has no respect for the press.



    Israeli military spokesman Lt. Col. Jonathan Conricus claimed that “Hamas used the building for a military intelligence office and weapons development” but “could not provide evidence” to back up the claims without “compromising” intelligence efforts.

    This “trust me I have the evidence” bullshit is reminiscent of the false narrative that fueled the 2003 Iraq War and the more recent Trump/Russia hoax. Such a pathetic cover story is enough to make most conservatives cringe but ultimately, many conservatives were tricked into celebrating anti-American terrorism—the bombing of civilian infrastructure that housed an American news outlet.

    A pro-Israel disinformation campaign, attempting to justify the bombing, began at the Washington Free Beacon before spreading across conservative media. The Republican-aligned Beacon has a history of lying and smear campaigns. It was founded by Bil Kristol, famous for helping the Bush admin lie America into the disastrous Iraq War. It went on to fund the Fusion GPS anti-Trump research that would later, under Democrat tutelage, hire Christopher Steele, a crucial source of the Trump/Russia investigation hoax, and more recently, the Beacon reported the Jewish girl “Stabbed in the Eye” hoax as fact.

    On the same day of the AP building bombing, the Beacon published an “exclusive” to defend IDF’s missile attack on the American press in Gaza. It cited two sources: (1) a Twitter post of Beacon contributor Noah Pollak, and (2) an old article published seven years prior in 2014 by Matti Friedman, a former AP reporter, and former IDF soldier.

    Pollack’s Twitter post cited an anonymous source he described as, “a well-placed friend in the IDF,” claiming that the AP office building “contained multiple Hamas operations & offices including weapons manufacturing and military intelligence,” adding that, “The building also housed an Islamic Jihad office. And AP’s local reporters knew about it.”



    “This info will come out soon,” he said.



    Yes, that’s right. He said, “This info will come out soon.” Over three years later now, “this info” supporting his claims still hasn’t come out.

    That alone is enough to completely discredit Pollak. But he’d already proven himself uncredible. He ran the Emergency Committee for Israel (ECI) (another “clown show” created by Kristol) which even the President of the Anti-Defanation League—not exactly an anti-Israel organization—called “misleading, distorted, inaccurate”. He was also caught leading an astroturfed pro-Israel counterprotest on a college campus. (Sounds familiar, doesn’t it?)

    Nevertheless, Pollak’s completely unsubstantiated claims were published immediately by the usual suspects—Fox News, Newsmax, New York Post, etc. The Republican party-aligned outlets also followed the Beacon’s lead, citing its second source, Friedman’s 2014 article.

    Like Pollak, Friedman also had a “well-placed friend” who “suggests there were indeed Hamas offices” in the AP building.




    Oh boy, another anonymous “friend”! Despite sounding so sure of his “intimately familiar with military decision-making” friend’s secret information, Friedman also wrote on Twitter that “Contrary to what I’ve seen attributed to me today, I didn’t write [in 2014] that Hamas operated out of the same building, and don’t know if that’s true”.




    The media citing Friedman typically omitted this. And I couldn’t help but notice that the media sharing his 2014 piece in The Atlantic accusing the AP of bias, and the piece itself failed to mention his own bias—his years of service in the IDF, and his “slightly rosier view of the IDF”, according to The Times of Israel.

    Now pause for just a moment to ponder how insane it is—even if all of Friedman’s disputed 2014 claims were true—to rely on an article written in 2014 by an IDF vet, who worked at AP in 2006-2011, to justify the IDF bombing Associated Press in 2021, for which the IDF itself provided no evidence to justify.

    This is the following 2014 excerpt that made the media rounds after the 2021 bombing:

    “The AP staff in Gaza City would witness a rocket launch right beside their office, endangering reporters and other civilians nearby—and the AP wouldn’t report it, not even in AP articles about Israeli claims that Hamas was launching rockets from residential areas. (This happened.) Hamas fighters would burst into the AP’s Gaza bureau and threaten the staff—and the AP wouldn’t report it. (This also happened.) Cameramen waiting outside Shifa Hospital in Gaza City would film the arrival of civilian casualties and then, at a signal from an official, turn off their cameras when wounded and dead fighters came in, helping Hamas maintain the illusion that only civilians were dying. (This too happened; the information comes from multiple sources with firsthand knowledge of these incidents.)”

    AP’s Director of Media Relations Paul Colford said Friedman’s story was “filled with distortions, half-truths and inaccuracies”, arguing that Israel challenged the AP with as many dangerous obstacles as Hamas and that AP covered both sides of the conflict.

    [Friedman’s] arguments have been filled with distortions, half-truths and inaccuracies…

    Like other media covering this story, we dealt with numerous obstacles, including Hamas intimidation, Israeli military censorship, anti-media incitement on both sides of the border, Hamas rocket fire and intense Israeli airstrikes that made it dangerous and difficult to get around Gaza during the fighting.

    Courageous AP staffers worked around the clock in Gaza, often at the risk of great personal harm. Intense Israeli airstrikes literally shook the high-rise building housing the AP’s office. Two AP employees were ultimately killed in Gaza, and a third critically wounded and maimed. Our body of work included images and stories about Hamas rocket fire from civilian areas, the suffering of the residents of southern Israel living under the threat of rocket, mortar and tunnel-based attacks, Hamas’ summary executions of suspected collaborators, the fears of Gazans to criticize the group, Hamas’ use of civilian areas for cover and the devastation wreaked on Gazan civilians by Israeli airstrikes and artillery attacks.

    Colford confirmed that armed militants entered AP’s offices in the early days of the 2008-2009 Gaza War to intimidate AP but said that AP did not give in to the intimidation.

    Regarding a few specific issues that Mr. Friedman has raised most recently:

    The AP published numerous photos and TV footage of rockets being launched from Gaza City. AP’s Josef Federman and Hamza Hendawi collaborated on an investigation into Hamas’ use of civilian areas for rocket launches, comparing maps obtained from Israeli military intelligence to facts on the ground.

    In the early days of the war, armed militants entered the AP’s offices in Gaza to complain about a photo showing the location of a specific rocket launch. The AP immediately contacted Hamas, which insisted the men did not represent the group. The photo was not withdrawn and the men were never heard from again. Subsequent videos similarly showed rocket launches from within the urban area. Such intimidation is common in trouble spots. The AP does not report many interactions with militias, armies, thugs or governments. These incidents are part of the challenge of getting out the news — and generally not themselves news.

    The Beacon’s “exclusive” was just the beginning. The “trust us we have secret evidence” disinformation campaign continued as the pro-Israel media eagerly forwarded another empty Israeli government claim, from a nameless “senior diplomatic source”, who told the Jerusalem Post of “smoking gun” evidence that Hamas was using the same Gaza building as AP.

    “We showed [the US] the smoking gun proving Hamas worked out of that building,” a senior diplomatic source said. “I understand they found the explanation satisfactory.”

    What evidence? Who exactly did they “show”? I guess we’ll never know!

    If there’s a satisfactory explanation for why IDF bombed an American news agency, you’d think Israel and the US might want to make that known. But they haven’t.

    Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu repeated the claim of secret “smoking gun” evidence on CBS’s Face the Nation, saying, “We share with our American friends all that intelligence”.

    Hmmm. Netanyahu and U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken appear friendly…

    But no, Blinken said he “had not seen any evidence”.

    When asked the next day if he’d received any evidence, Blinken didn’t quite confirm receiving anything. He said, “Um…uh…it’s my understanding that uh, we’ve uh, uh received uh, some further information through, uh, uh intelligence channels.” The only thing he actually confirmed was that it’s “not something that [he] can comment on.”

    WAPO: Yesterday you said the US requested an explanation from Israel about its bombing of a high rise building containing U.S. and foreign media offices. Have you received anything? And what’s your assessment of that?

    BLINKEN: Um. We uh. Did uh. Seek uh. Further information from, uh, Israel on this question. Uh, it’s my understanding that uh, we’ve uh, uh received uh, some further information through, uh, uh intelligence channels. And that’s not something that, that I can comment on.



    Click here to watch the video

    The following month, in June 2021, Israel’s Channel 12 news reported that IDF Lieutenant-General Aviv Kohavi said that the AP’s journalists drank coffee with Hamas each morning in the building’s cafeteria, whether they knew it or not. The AP called the comments “patently false”, noting “there was not even a cafeteria in the building”. Israel’s Defense Minister Benny Gantz told AP that the IDF General was speaking figuratively. However, Gantz, like all the Israeli officials before him, offered AP no evidence to support IDF’s bombing of the news agencies.

    Gantz said Israel has shared its intelligence with the U.S. government. But he indicated that Israel has no intention of making the information public, saying it did not want to divulge its sources.

    As usual, the propaganda was not limited to conservative media. The Democrat Party-aligned television network CNN platformed IDF Spokesperson, Lt. Col. Jonathan Conricus. Asked, “Can you show us the evidence?” Cornicus replied, “That’s in process, and I’m sure that, in due time, that information will be presented.”

    It’s due time to come to grips with the reality that there is no evidence to justify the attack. Israel bombed an American news agency (with an American bomb), and the American government continues to cover for Israel and continues to fund continued death and destruction in Gaza.

    *

    Note to readers: Please click the share button above. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter and subscribe to our Telegram Channel. Feel free to repost and share widely Global Research articles.

    All images in this article are from the author
    When Israel Bombed AP’s Gaza Office All Global Research articles can be read in 51 languages by activating the Translate Website button below the author’s name (only available in desktop version). To receive Global Research’s Daily Newsletter (selected articles), click here. Click the share button above to email/forward this article to your friends and colleagues. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter and subscribe to our Telegram Channel. Feel free to repost and share widely Global Research articles. Global Research Wants to Hear From You! *** Wednesday was Nakba Day—the day commemorating the expulsion of 750,000 Palestinians with the creation of Israel, in 1948—but there was another anniversary worth remembering. The day a foreign country bombed the offices of a major U.S. press outlet, accusing it, without evidence, of harboring terrorists. And a significant portion of the US media spun the story to support the foreign country. On May 15, 2021, as part of its “Operation Guardian of the Walls” military campaign in Gaza, Israel bombed the Associated Press offices’ building, based on the still evidence-free claim that the AP headquarters “housed Hamas”. According to the Committee to Protect Journalists, the week prior, IDF bombed two other office buildings that “housed more than a dozen international and local media outlets.” Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) gave the tenants of the al-Jalaa Building in Gaza—which included AP, other news agencies including Al-Jazeera, and residential homes—a stern warning. IDF informed them they had one hour to evacuate their homes before the building would be bombed by Israeli missiles. Sixty minutes and three Israeli missiles later, the 12-story building was leveled to the ground. The IDF posted a short vague statement that provided no evidence for their claim the building was being used by terrorists but made sure to repeat the term “Hamas terror organization” four times, in just four sentences—five times if you count “Hamas military intelligence” in the headline. The AP’s CEO at the time, Gary Pruitt, said the news agency had been in the building for 15 years and “we have had no indication Hamas was in the building or active in the building.” So could Israel have been lying? Well, retired US Army colonel and former chief of staff to Secretary of State Colin Powell, Lawrence Wilkerson seems to think so. Let me let me preface these remarks with I never, never, ever believe Israeli figures. I’ve been in the government too long to know that the Israelis are patent liars in their intelligence community, in their propaganda community, certainly, and in their leadership. They are inveterate liars. Let me say that again. They are liars. So you can’t believe anything that comes out of Jerusalem. It’s all propaganda. The fact that Israel lied to the international press just one week prior about a fake ground invasion, to trick Hamas into giving up their positions, doesn’t help Israel’s case. On the contrary, it clearly shows that Israel puts military victory over truth, and has no respect for the press. Israeli military spokesman Lt. Col. Jonathan Conricus claimed that “Hamas used the building for a military intelligence office and weapons development” but “could not provide evidence” to back up the claims without “compromising” intelligence efforts. This “trust me I have the evidence” bullshit is reminiscent of the false narrative that fueled the 2003 Iraq War and the more recent Trump/Russia hoax. Such a pathetic cover story is enough to make most conservatives cringe but ultimately, many conservatives were tricked into celebrating anti-American terrorism—the bombing of civilian infrastructure that housed an American news outlet. A pro-Israel disinformation campaign, attempting to justify the bombing, began at the Washington Free Beacon before spreading across conservative media. The Republican-aligned Beacon has a history of lying and smear campaigns. It was founded by Bil Kristol, famous for helping the Bush admin lie America into the disastrous Iraq War. It went on to fund the Fusion GPS anti-Trump research that would later, under Democrat tutelage, hire Christopher Steele, a crucial source of the Trump/Russia investigation hoax, and more recently, the Beacon reported the Jewish girl “Stabbed in the Eye” hoax as fact. On the same day of the AP building bombing, the Beacon published an “exclusive” to defend IDF’s missile attack on the American press in Gaza. It cited two sources: (1) a Twitter post of Beacon contributor Noah Pollak, and (2) an old article published seven years prior in 2014 by Matti Friedman, a former AP reporter, and former IDF soldier. Pollack’s Twitter post cited an anonymous source he described as, “a well-placed friend in the IDF,” claiming that the AP office building “contained multiple Hamas operations & offices including weapons manufacturing and military intelligence,” adding that, “The building also housed an Islamic Jihad office. And AP’s local reporters knew about it.” “This info will come out soon,” he said. Yes, that’s right. He said, “This info will come out soon.” Over three years later now, “this info” supporting his claims still hasn’t come out. That alone is enough to completely discredit Pollak. But he’d already proven himself uncredible. He ran the Emergency Committee for Israel (ECI) (another “clown show” created by Kristol) which even the President of the Anti-Defanation League—not exactly an anti-Israel organization—called “misleading, distorted, inaccurate”. He was also caught leading an astroturfed pro-Israel counterprotest on a college campus. (Sounds familiar, doesn’t it?) Nevertheless, Pollak’s completely unsubstantiated claims were published immediately by the usual suspects—Fox News, Newsmax, New York Post, etc. The Republican party-aligned outlets also followed the Beacon’s lead, citing its second source, Friedman’s 2014 article. Like Pollak, Friedman also had a “well-placed friend” who “suggests there were indeed Hamas offices” in the AP building. Oh boy, another anonymous “friend”! Despite sounding so sure of his “intimately familiar with military decision-making” friend’s secret information, Friedman also wrote on Twitter that “Contrary to what I’ve seen attributed to me today, I didn’t write [in 2014] that Hamas operated out of the same building, and don’t know if that’s true”. The media citing Friedman typically omitted this. And I couldn’t help but notice that the media sharing his 2014 piece in The Atlantic accusing the AP of bias, and the piece itself failed to mention his own bias—his years of service in the IDF, and his “slightly rosier view of the IDF”, according to The Times of Israel. Now pause for just a moment to ponder how insane it is—even if all of Friedman’s disputed 2014 claims were true—to rely on an article written in 2014 by an IDF vet, who worked at AP in 2006-2011, to justify the IDF bombing Associated Press in 2021, for which the IDF itself provided no evidence to justify. This is the following 2014 excerpt that made the media rounds after the 2021 bombing: “The AP staff in Gaza City would witness a rocket launch right beside their office, endangering reporters and other civilians nearby—and the AP wouldn’t report it, not even in AP articles about Israeli claims that Hamas was launching rockets from residential areas. (This happened.) Hamas fighters would burst into the AP’s Gaza bureau and threaten the staff—and the AP wouldn’t report it. (This also happened.) Cameramen waiting outside Shifa Hospital in Gaza City would film the arrival of civilian casualties and then, at a signal from an official, turn off their cameras when wounded and dead fighters came in, helping Hamas maintain the illusion that only civilians were dying. (This too happened; the information comes from multiple sources with firsthand knowledge of these incidents.)” AP’s Director of Media Relations Paul Colford said Friedman’s story was “filled with distortions, half-truths and inaccuracies”, arguing that Israel challenged the AP with as many dangerous obstacles as Hamas and that AP covered both sides of the conflict. [Friedman’s] arguments have been filled with distortions, half-truths and inaccuracies… Like other media covering this story, we dealt with numerous obstacles, including Hamas intimidation, Israeli military censorship, anti-media incitement on both sides of the border, Hamas rocket fire and intense Israeli airstrikes that made it dangerous and difficult to get around Gaza during the fighting. Courageous AP staffers worked around the clock in Gaza, often at the risk of great personal harm. Intense Israeli airstrikes literally shook the high-rise building housing the AP’s office. Two AP employees were ultimately killed in Gaza, and a third critically wounded and maimed. Our body of work included images and stories about Hamas rocket fire from civilian areas, the suffering of the residents of southern Israel living under the threat of rocket, mortar and tunnel-based attacks, Hamas’ summary executions of suspected collaborators, the fears of Gazans to criticize the group, Hamas’ use of civilian areas for cover and the devastation wreaked on Gazan civilians by Israeli airstrikes and artillery attacks. Colford confirmed that armed militants entered AP’s offices in the early days of the 2008-2009 Gaza War to intimidate AP but said that AP did not give in to the intimidation. Regarding a few specific issues that Mr. Friedman has raised most recently: The AP published numerous photos and TV footage of rockets being launched from Gaza City. AP’s Josef Federman and Hamza Hendawi collaborated on an investigation into Hamas’ use of civilian areas for rocket launches, comparing maps obtained from Israeli military intelligence to facts on the ground. In the early days of the war, armed militants entered the AP’s offices in Gaza to complain about a photo showing the location of a specific rocket launch. The AP immediately contacted Hamas, which insisted the men did not represent the group. The photo was not withdrawn and the men were never heard from again. Subsequent videos similarly showed rocket launches from within the urban area. Such intimidation is common in trouble spots. The AP does not report many interactions with militias, armies, thugs or governments. These incidents are part of the challenge of getting out the news — and generally not themselves news. The Beacon’s “exclusive” was just the beginning. The “trust us we have secret evidence” disinformation campaign continued as the pro-Israel media eagerly forwarded another empty Israeli government claim, from a nameless “senior diplomatic source”, who told the Jerusalem Post of “smoking gun” evidence that Hamas was using the same Gaza building as AP. “We showed [the US] the smoking gun proving Hamas worked out of that building,” a senior diplomatic source said. “I understand they found the explanation satisfactory.” What evidence? Who exactly did they “show”? I guess we’ll never know! If there’s a satisfactory explanation for why IDF bombed an American news agency, you’d think Israel and the US might want to make that known. But they haven’t. Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu repeated the claim of secret “smoking gun” evidence on CBS’s Face the Nation, saying, “We share with our American friends all that intelligence”. Hmmm. Netanyahu and U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken appear friendly… But no, Blinken said he “had not seen any evidence”. When asked the next day if he’d received any evidence, Blinken didn’t quite confirm receiving anything. He said, “Um…uh…it’s my understanding that uh, we’ve uh, uh received uh, some further information through, uh, uh intelligence channels.” The only thing he actually confirmed was that it’s “not something that [he] can comment on.” WAPO: Yesterday you said the US requested an explanation from Israel about its bombing of a high rise building containing U.S. and foreign media offices. Have you received anything? And what’s your assessment of that? BLINKEN: Um. We uh. Did uh. Seek uh. Further information from, uh, Israel on this question. Uh, it’s my understanding that uh, we’ve uh, uh received uh, some further information through, uh, uh intelligence channels. And that’s not something that, that I can comment on. Click here to watch the video The following month, in June 2021, Israel’s Channel 12 news reported that IDF Lieutenant-General Aviv Kohavi said that the AP’s journalists drank coffee with Hamas each morning in the building’s cafeteria, whether they knew it or not. The AP called the comments “patently false”, noting “there was not even a cafeteria in the building”. Israel’s Defense Minister Benny Gantz told AP that the IDF General was speaking figuratively. However, Gantz, like all the Israeli officials before him, offered AP no evidence to support IDF’s bombing of the news agencies. Gantz said Israel has shared its intelligence with the U.S. government. But he indicated that Israel has no intention of making the information public, saying it did not want to divulge its sources. As usual, the propaganda was not limited to conservative media. The Democrat Party-aligned television network CNN platformed IDF Spokesperson, Lt. Col. Jonathan Conricus. Asked, “Can you show us the evidence?” Cornicus replied, “That’s in process, and I’m sure that, in due time, that information will be presented.” It’s due time to come to grips with the reality that there is no evidence to justify the attack. Israel bombed an American news agency (with an American bomb), and the American government continues to cover for Israel and continues to fund continued death and destruction in Gaza. * Note to readers: Please click the share button above. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter and subscribe to our Telegram Channel. Feel free to repost and share widely Global Research articles. All images in this article are from the author
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    Fabio G. C. CarisioMarch 19, 2024

    VT Condemns the ETHNIC CLEANSING OF PALESTINIANS by USA/Israel

    $ 280 BILLION US TAXPAYER DOLLARS INVESTED since 1948 in US/Israeli Ethnic Cleansing and Occupation Operation; $ 150B direct "aid" and $ 130B in "Offense" contracts
    Source: Embassy of Israel, Washington, D.C. and US Department of State.

    In the cover image Pfc. Shaniah Edwards, Medical Detachment, prepares to administer the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine to soldiers and airmen at the Joint Force Headquarters, February 12, 2021. (U.S. Army National Guard photo by Sgt. Leona C. Hendrickson – Source – particular)

    Introduction by Carlo Domenico Cristofori

    VERSIONE IN ITALIANO

    In the now very distant September 2021, a few months after the entry into force of the most massive mandatory vaccination campaign in the history of the “democratic” West, a doctor in surgery with experience of bacteriological weapons and lieutenant colonel of the US Air Force raised the alarm about the dangers of adverse reactions to mRNA gene sera with serious heart problems.

    Theresa Long made the complaint about her as a whistleblower in a long and detailed affidavit (sworn report) whichGospa News reported a few days after her diffusion in the USA.

    Not only. In the same document he communicated that he prohibited all vaccinated pilots of the wing of the 1st Aviation Brigade at the Fort Rucker base (NOW Fort Novosel in Alabama) of which he was the doctor in charge from flying.

    She was in fact forced to leave the army and is now among the 200 active or retired soldiers like her who have taken legal action against their superiors precisely for the imposition of mandatory vaccination.

    Declassified Department of Defense data now confirms the validity of her alarm…

    US Navy Medic Shut Down for Releasing Unclassified DOD Data Showing a 937% Increase in Heart Failure Among Vaccinated US Military Personnel

    Paul Craig Roberts – originally published on Global Research

    All links to Gospa News articles have been added aftermath, in relation to the topics highlighted

    Yesterday I provided examples (link below) of how the establishment, which can only lie, is trying to narrative manage the no longer deniable evidence that the Covid vax is deadly and harmful to health.

    One of the narrative management tricks is to admit the adverse effects of the “vaccine” but to sweep them under the rug as “rare.”

    If the dangers of the “vaccine” were rare, Big Pharma would not have its shills at work trying to discredit or dismantle the vaccine adverse events reporting system.

    That the deaths and health injuries are anything but rare is evident from the report by a US Navy medic that Department of Defense data show that US Navy pilots have suffered a:

    937% increase in heart failure

    152% increase in cardiomyopathy

    69% increase in ischemic heart disease

    36% increase in hypertensive disease

    36% increase in hypertensive disease

    63% increase in other forms of heart disease

    The corrupt US Department of Defense, a ramp for the excess profits of the armaments industry, tried to blame the events on the Covid virus itself.

    However, “according to information published by the US Army, 97% of active-duty U.S. troops are fully vaccinated, 90% of Army National Guard members are fully vaccinated, and 91% of U.S. Army Reserve members are fully vaccinated.”

    So, if the “vaccine” did not cause the deaths and health injuries, and the virus was responsible, obviously the “vaccine” was totally ineffective in protecting against the virus.

    In actual fact, according to independent medical scientists, the “vaccine” not only did not protect but caused more deaths and worst health injuries than the virus itself. This is the honest, documented, verified conclusion of medical scientists whose research and results are not financed by Big Pharma and the universities that rely on pharmaceutical industry grants. It is the independent scientists who are motivated by truth instead of profit and career who tell the truth and suffer for it.

    As the US Navy medic now suffers. Lt. Ted Macie met with the female Chief of Naval Operations and her aide, and afterward found that he was blocked from access to his computer. Charges are likely pending against him.

    So, we see how powerful Big Pharma is. Not even the US Navy is permitted to release unclassified data that show the devastating impact of the Covid “vaccine.” See this.

    Paul Craig Roberts – originally published on Global Research

    Note to readers: Follow us on Instagram and Twitter and subscribe to our Telegram Channel. Feel free to repost and share widely Global Research articles.

    Paul Craig Roberts is a renowned author and academic, chairman of The Institute for Political Economy where this article was originally published. Dr. Roberts was previously associate editor and columnist for The Wall Street Journal. He was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Economic Policy during the Reagan Administration. He is a regular contributor to Global Research.

    Fabio is investigative journalist since 1991. Now geopolitics, intelligence, military, SARS-Cov-2 manmade, NWO expert and Director-founder of Gospa News: a Christian Information Journal.

    His articles were published on many international media and website as SouthFront, Reseau International, Sputnik Italia, United Nation Association Westminster, Global Research, Kolozeg and more…

    Most popolar investigation on VT is:

    Rumsfeld Shady Heritage in Pandemic: GILEAD’s Intrigues with WHO & Wuhan Lab. Bio-Weapons’ Tests with CIA & Pentagon

    Fabio Giuseppe Carlo Carisio, born on 24/2/1967 in Borgosesia, started working as a reporter when he was only 19 years old in the alpine area of Valsesia, Piedmont, his birth region in Italy. After studying literature and history at the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart in Milan, he became director of the local newspaper Notizia Oggi Vercelli and specialized in judicial reporting.

    For about 15 years he is a correspondent from Northern Italy for the Italian newspapers Libero and Il Giornale, also writing important revelations on the Ustica massacre, a report on Freemasonry and organized crime.

    With independent investigations, he collaborates with Carabinieri and Guardia di Finanza in important investigations that conclude with the arrest of Camorra entrepreneurs or corrupt politicians.

    In July 2018 he found the counter-information web media Gospa News focused on geopolitics, terrorism, Middle East, and military intelligence.

    In 2020 published the book, in Italian only, WUHAN-GATES – The New World Order Plot on SARS-Cov-2 manmade focused on the cycle of investigations Wuhan-Gates

    His investigations was quoted also by The Gateway Pundit, Tasnim and others

    He worked for many years for the magazine Art & Wine as an art critic and curator.

    VETERANS TODAY OLD POSTS

    www.gospanews.net/

    ATTENTION READERS

    We See The World From All Sides and Want YOU To Be Fully Informed
    In fact, intentional disinformation is a disgraceful scourge in media today. So to assuage any possible errant incorrect information posted herein, we strongly encourage you to seek corroboration from other non-VT sources before forming an educated opinion.

    About VT - Policies & Disclosures - Comment Policy
    Due to the nature of uncensored content posted by VT's fully independent international writers, VT cannot guarantee absolute validity. All content is owned by the author exclusively. Expressed opinions are NOT necessarily the views of VT, other authors, affiliates, advertisers, sponsors, partners, or technicians. Some content may be satirical in nature. All images are the full responsibility of the article author and NOT VT.


    https://www.vtforeignpolicy.com/2024/03/937-increase-in-heart-failure-among-vaccinated-us-military-personnel/
    937% Increase in Heart Failure among Vaccinated US Military Personnel Fabio G. C. CarisioMarch 19, 2024 VT Condemns the ETHNIC CLEANSING OF PALESTINIANS by USA/Israel $ 280 BILLION US TAXPAYER DOLLARS INVESTED since 1948 in US/Israeli Ethnic Cleansing and Occupation Operation; $ 150B direct "aid" and $ 130B in "Offense" contracts Source: Embassy of Israel, Washington, D.C. and US Department of State. In the cover image Pfc. Shaniah Edwards, Medical Detachment, prepares to administer the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine to soldiers and airmen at the Joint Force Headquarters, February 12, 2021. (U.S. Army National Guard photo by Sgt. Leona C. Hendrickson – Source – particular) Introduction by Carlo Domenico Cristofori VERSIONE IN ITALIANO In the now very distant September 2021, a few months after the entry into force of the most massive mandatory vaccination campaign in the history of the “democratic” West, a doctor in surgery with experience of bacteriological weapons and lieutenant colonel of the US Air Force raised the alarm about the dangers of adverse reactions to mRNA gene sera with serious heart problems. Theresa Long made the complaint about her as a whistleblower in a long and detailed affidavit (sworn report) whichGospa News reported a few days after her diffusion in the USA. Not only. In the same document he communicated that he prohibited all vaccinated pilots of the wing of the 1st Aviation Brigade at the Fort Rucker base (NOW Fort Novosel in Alabama) of which he was the doctor in charge from flying. She was in fact forced to leave the army and is now among the 200 active or retired soldiers like her who have taken legal action against their superiors precisely for the imposition of mandatory vaccination. Declassified Department of Defense data now confirms the validity of her alarm… US Navy Medic Shut Down for Releasing Unclassified DOD Data Showing a 937% Increase in Heart Failure Among Vaccinated US Military Personnel Paul Craig Roberts – originally published on Global Research All links to Gospa News articles have been added aftermath, in relation to the topics highlighted Yesterday I provided examples (link below) of how the establishment, which can only lie, is trying to narrative manage the no longer deniable evidence that the Covid vax is deadly and harmful to health. One of the narrative management tricks is to admit the adverse effects of the “vaccine” but to sweep them under the rug as “rare.” If the dangers of the “vaccine” were rare, Big Pharma would not have its shills at work trying to discredit or dismantle the vaccine adverse events reporting system. That the deaths and health injuries are anything but rare is evident from the report by a US Navy medic that Department of Defense data show that US Navy pilots have suffered a: 937% increase in heart failure 152% increase in cardiomyopathy 69% increase in ischemic heart disease 36% increase in hypertensive disease 36% increase in hypertensive disease 63% increase in other forms of heart disease The corrupt US Department of Defense, a ramp for the excess profits of the armaments industry, tried to blame the events on the Covid virus itself. However, “according to information published by the US Army, 97% of active-duty U.S. troops are fully vaccinated, 90% of Army National Guard members are fully vaccinated, and 91% of U.S. Army Reserve members are fully vaccinated.” So, if the “vaccine” did not cause the deaths and health injuries, and the virus was responsible, obviously the “vaccine” was totally ineffective in protecting against the virus. In actual fact, according to independent medical scientists, the “vaccine” not only did not protect but caused more deaths and worst health injuries than the virus itself. This is the honest, documented, verified conclusion of medical scientists whose research and results are not financed by Big Pharma and the universities that rely on pharmaceutical industry grants. It is the independent scientists who are motivated by truth instead of profit and career who tell the truth and suffer for it. As the US Navy medic now suffers. Lt. Ted Macie met with the female Chief of Naval Operations and her aide, and afterward found that he was blocked from access to his computer. Charges are likely pending against him. So, we see how powerful Big Pharma is. Not even the US Navy is permitted to release unclassified data that show the devastating impact of the Covid “vaccine.” See this. Paul Craig Roberts – originally published on Global Research Note to readers: Follow us on Instagram and Twitter and subscribe to our Telegram Channel. Feel free to repost and share widely Global Research articles. Paul Craig Roberts is a renowned author and academic, chairman of The Institute for Political Economy where this article was originally published. Dr. Roberts was previously associate editor and columnist for The Wall Street Journal. He was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Economic Policy during the Reagan Administration. He is a regular contributor to Global Research. Fabio is investigative journalist since 1991. Now geopolitics, intelligence, military, SARS-Cov-2 manmade, NWO expert and Director-founder of Gospa News: a Christian Information Journal. His articles were published on many international media and website as SouthFront, Reseau International, Sputnik Italia, United Nation Association Westminster, Global Research, Kolozeg and more… Most popolar investigation on VT is: Rumsfeld Shady Heritage in Pandemic: GILEAD’s Intrigues with WHO & Wuhan Lab. Bio-Weapons’ Tests with CIA & Pentagon Fabio Giuseppe Carlo Carisio, born on 24/2/1967 in Borgosesia, started working as a reporter when he was only 19 years old in the alpine area of Valsesia, Piedmont, his birth region in Italy. After studying literature and history at the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart in Milan, he became director of the local newspaper Notizia Oggi Vercelli and specialized in judicial reporting. For about 15 years he is a correspondent from Northern Italy for the Italian newspapers Libero and Il Giornale, also writing important revelations on the Ustica massacre, a report on Freemasonry and organized crime. With independent investigations, he collaborates with Carabinieri and Guardia di Finanza in important investigations that conclude with the arrest of Camorra entrepreneurs or corrupt politicians. In July 2018 he found the counter-information web media Gospa News focused on geopolitics, terrorism, Middle East, and military intelligence. In 2020 published the book, in Italian only, WUHAN-GATES – The New World Order Plot on SARS-Cov-2 manmade focused on the cycle of investigations Wuhan-Gates His investigations was quoted also by The Gateway Pundit, Tasnim and others He worked for many years for the magazine Art & Wine as an art critic and curator. VETERANS TODAY OLD POSTS www.gospanews.net/ ATTENTION READERS We See The World From All Sides and Want YOU To Be Fully Informed In fact, intentional disinformation is a disgraceful scourge in media today. So to assuage any possible errant incorrect information posted herein, we strongly encourage you to seek corroboration from other non-VT sources before forming an educated opinion. About VT - Policies & Disclosures - Comment Policy Due to the nature of uncensored content posted by VT's fully independent international writers, VT cannot guarantee absolute validity. All content is owned by the author exclusively. Expressed opinions are NOT necessarily the views of VT, other authors, affiliates, advertisers, sponsors, partners, or technicians. Some content may be satirical in nature. All images are the full responsibility of the article author and NOT VT. https://www.vtforeignpolicy.com/2024/03/937-increase-in-heart-failure-among-vaccinated-us-military-personnel/
    WWW.VTFOREIGNPOLICY.COM
    937% Increase in Heart Failure among Vaccinated US Military Personnel
    In the cover image Pfc. Shaniah Edwards, Medical Detachment, prepares to administer the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine to soldiers and airmen at the Joint Force Headquarters, February 12, 2021. (U.S. Army National Guard photo by Sgt. Leona C. Hendrickson – Source - particular) Introduction by Carlo Domenico Cristofori VERSIONE IN ITALIANO In the now very distant September
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  • DNA contamination in Covid vaccines DOES get into human cells, new evidence shows
    It also appears that the contamination enters the cell nucleus and integrates with human DNA

    Rebekah Barnett
    Regulators and fact checkers claim that plasmid DNA contamination in the mRNA Covid vaccines can’t change your genomic DNA, but new evidence suggests that it actually can.

    The fact checkers assert that DNA contamination poses no risk to your genomic DNA because your body will naturally destroy any contaminant DNA before it even gets into the cells.

    Even if the contaminant DNA could get into cells, there’s no way it can enter the cell nucleus, where genomic integration events occur, they say.

    And even if the contaminant DNA could enter the nucleus, which it can’t, it still couldn’t genomically integrate unless specific enzymes are present, they say.

    However, results from independent lab testing conducted on ovarian cancer cell lines show that contaminant DNA from Pfizer’s Covid vaccine not only crossed into the cells, but that it survived multiple cell divisions. This is suggestive that the contaminant DNA is able to transfect (enter) the cell nucleus, and that it integrated with the human cell DNA.

    TLDR

    1. Scientists claim that Pfizer vaccine contaminant DNA has been detected in ovarian cancer cell line DNA, but they do not yet know if it’s chromosomal (heritable) or extra-chromosomal DNA (not heritable)

    2. This is an in vitro (in a lab dish) finding, and needs to be replicated in vivo (in a human patient)

    3. As the finding is specific to cancer cell lines, it is not generalisable, but scientists say it may give an indication of what cancer patients in remission could experience after mRNA Covid vaccination

    4. This finding calls into question fact checker claims that mRNA Covid vaccine DNA contamination can't enter cells, can't enter the nucleus, and cannot integrate with human DNA.
    Last year, Boston-based genomics scientist Kevin McKernan made the shocking discovery that the mRNA Covid vaccines are contaminated with excessive levels of plasmid DNA, an artefact of the vaccine production process.

    McKernan’s findings were soon confirmed by multiple independent labs around the world for both the Pfizer and Moderna mono- and bi-valent vaccines, including lots approved for children, with one Canadian study led by Dr David Speicher concluding that there are “billions to hundreds of billions of DNA molecules per dose.”

    Scientists including McKernan, University of South Carolina cancer genomics scientist Dr Phillip Buckhaults, and Dr Wafik El-Diery, head of the Cancer Centre at Brown University, expressed concerns that fragments of plasmid DNA contamination could cause adverse events, autoimmune problems and cancers in some patients.

    But perhaps most significantly, there is also a theoretical risk of the contaminant DNA integrating with patients’ chromosomal DNA and modifying the human genome. This is of particular concern with the Pfizer vaccine, which contains an SV40 enhancer sequence, used in gene therapies “to drive DNA into the nucleus,” explains McKernan.

    While regulators have taken a ‘wait and see’ approach, independent scientists, including McKernan, have been more proactive, initiating experiments testing for evidence of genomic integration.

    Now, the first results are in.

    In an experiment conducted together with German molecular biologist Dr Ulrike Kämmerer, McKernan has detected vaccine contaminant DNA in ovarian cancer cell lines treated with Pfizer’s Covid vaccine.

    The scientists found a chimeric combination of human ovarian cell line DNA and spike sequence DNA derived from the contaminating plasmid at at least one, and possibly two sites.

    “If anything, this work has put to bed the question regarding if this contaminant DNA gets into the cell, and the chimeric human and contaminant spike DNA sequences imply it has entered the nucleus,” McKernan says.

    “The PCR and sequencing data both demonstrate the vaccine is getting into the cell and surviving cell passaging. It is likely bioactive and being partially replicated.”

    To reach this finding, Dr Kämmerer first treated ovarian cancer cell lines with mRNA Covid vaccines, using cells treated with AstraZeneca and Janssen vaccines as controls.

    The cells were then ‘passaged’, meaning they were left to divide and replicate numerous times. This has the effect of “rinsing away residual vaccine,” explains McKernan.

    Immunohistochemistry (IHC) was then performed, a staining process that Dr Kämmerer used to detect levels of spike protein expression produced by the vaccine modified-RNA.

    This was to confirm that the lipid nanoparticles (LNPs) carrying mod-RNA and plasmid DNA contamination “did their job and delivered the payload,” says McKernan. Measuring how many cells expressed spike protein also allowed the scientists to determine how much of the vaccine to treat the cells with.


    Immunohistochemistry performed with Pfizer top left, AstraZeneca top right as a control. Source: Kevin McKernan’s Substack
    Cell lines were then sent in cold storage to McKernan’s Boston lab, where his team used qPCR to screen which samples to sequence the cell line DNA.

    “What we found is, [contaminant] DNA that is getting transfected into ovarian cancer cell lines is replicating in the cells,” says McKernan, noting that the ratio of vaccine contaminant DNA to human cell DNA was “higher than we expected.”

    Chimeric sequences of human and vaccine contaminant DNA were detected at two sites: chromosomes 9 and 12, with the evidence for the latter being the strongest. “But we don't know if it's extra-chromosomal or whether it's chromosomal because of the Illumina (short read) method we used to sequence,” explains McKernan.


    Source: Kevin McKernan’s Substack
    Extra-chromosomal DNA is not part of the chromosome, and is therefore less likely to replicate and to be heritable. Chromosomal DNA, on the other hand, is heritable and more likely to be replicated. A third category, mitochondrial DNA, is heritable, but only from the maternal line.

    You can read a detailed account of methods and findings via McKernan’s Substack article, ‘Vaccine targeted qPCR of Cancer Cell Lines treated with BNT162b2.’

    ‘Major advance,’ but clinical implications are limited

    McKernan emphasises that these findings cannot be generalised, stating that “it is too early to make comments on the clinical implications.”

    “The study is performed in ovarian cancer cell lines. It is not performed in patient cells, but this is a proxy for what might happen in an ovarian cancer patient who's in remission,” says McKernan, especially as there is evidence that the LNPs go to the ovaries.

    The risk for patients in this scenario is that integration events with contaminant DNA might cause aberrant cell growth, which poses a risk to immune suppression of new cancer cells.

    McKernan notes that his experiment only picked up on putative integration events that persisted after multiple cell replications. That is to say, the scientists were not able to detect integration events that may have occurred, but then died off immediately.

    At the moment, no one knows how many integration events might be occurring, or what effect that would have on patients. “The unknowns are just exponential,” says McKernan.

    The cancer cell line experiment can be said to be “a microcosm of genome integration of contaminated DNA,” said Japanese molecular oncology scientist Hiroshi Arakawa, in his own analysis of McKernan and Dr Kämmerer’s experiment, published to his popular science blog on which he shares critical views on Covid vaccine safety.

    Akira calls the two possible integrations observed in Dr Kämmerer’s experiment a “major advance” laying the ground for further experimentation. “What happens in cultured cells can also occur in normal cells, and a wide variety of abnormalities can occur depending on the site of genome integration,” such as “the induction of cancer or malignant transformation,” he wrote (translated from Japanese to English).

    LNPs deliver contaminant DNA straight to the cells

    A key assumption underlying claims that mRNA Covid vaccine contamination cannot enter the cell nucleus, and cannot genomically integrate with host DNA, is that the contamination will never make it into dividing cells, which would be required for integration to occur.

    This is based on the assumption that the LNPs containing both mod-RNA and contaminant DNA mostly stay in the muscle at the injection site. As muscle cells do not divide, there’s no problem, the logic goes.

    This is misleading, however, as Pfizer’s own biodistribution data shows that the LNPs enter the blood and every major organ system, including the ovaries, as mentioned above. While it is true that muscle cells don’t divide, LNPs distributed around the body can transfect any number of dividing cells in various organ systems.


    Table 4-2. shows biodistribution of LNPs, Pfizer Nonclinical Evaluation Report, 2021
    From there, it’s only a matter of time before the LNP contents get into the cell nucleus, says McKernan. “In any dividing cell, the nucleus dissolves. So, when people say the DNA can get into the cytoplasm [inside the cell membrane] but won't get into the nucleus, well, in any dividing cell, it will end up getting into the nucleus.”

    It is possible that the dissolution of the cell nucleus during division is the mechanism underlying McKernan and Dr Kämmerer’s observed passaging of contaminant DNA, but further research will be required to confirm or disprove this hypothesis.

    Because of the effectiveness of LNPs in delivering their contents into cells, McKernan, Dr Buckhaults and Dr Speicher have questioned the suitability of the current regulatory limits on contaminant DNA in vaccines, which were set prior to the introduction of LNP technology in vaccines.

    Regulators unconcerned

    I sent McKernan’s Substack article documenting the new DNA integration findings to Australia’s drug regulator, the Therapeutic Goods Administration, for comment.

    The TGA did not address the new findings, but a spokesperson from the TGA responded,

    “The Department of Health and Aged Care has every confidence in the safety, quality and efficacy of the various approved COVID-19 vaccines for use in Australia. The TGA’s assessment of all vaccines is based upon high quality evidence, including studies and reviews published in peer-reviewed scientific and clinical journals.”

    However, when asked previously to provide evidence for its position that Covid vaccines pose no risk of DNA integration, the TGA provided no peer-reviewed scientific evidence to support its claims.

    Instead, the TGA provided links to a Mayo Clinic fact page with no scientific citations, an article by the discredited RMIT FactLab, and a scientific commentary article suggesting that in vitro findings cannot be generalised.

    Furthermore, TGA has not been forthcoming with the evidence it does hold. When asked to release Covid vaccine batch testing results under Freedom of Information, the regulator provided all 74 pages - fully redacted.

    In the US, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) denied that contaminant DNA in the mRNA vaccines can enter the nucleus or pose any threat to patients’ genomic DNA, in a response to concerns raised by Florida Surgeon General, Dr Joseph A. Ladapo in December of last year.

    Additionally, the FDA misleadingly refuted the presence of SV40 proteins in the vaccines, when in fact Dr Ladapo raised concerns over the presence of an SV40 enchancer sequence in the Pfizer vaccine, as confirmed by Health Canada and numerous independent laboratories.

    Such ham-fisted mischaracterisation of a gene therapy sequence by the FDA is suggestive of either gross incompetence, or a disinformation play. Both are concerning.

    Science journalist Maryanne Demasi reported, in November last year, that the FDA shut down her enquiries into the DNA contamination matter, refusing to confirm if it found levels of DNA that exceeded acceptable levels, or if it was investigating further.

    The presence of contamination has been officially acknowledged by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) and Health Canada, with the latter also acknowledging the presence of the SV40 enhancer sequence, though both regulators deny that the amounts exceed regulatory limits, or that the DNA contamination poses any risk.

    ‘No excuse’ for ignoring ‘screaming hot signal’

    Instead of denying excessive DNA levels and deferring to manufacturers’ reported test results, regulators should run their own qPCR testing on batch lots, says McKernan.

    Then, “they would see what everyone else is seeing, which is that sometimes the CT scores come out as low as 13… that’s a screaming hot signal.”

    “As a reference, the Covid test would call people positive at 33-35,” McKernan explains. “That’s a million-fold difference (20 CTs). A million-fold less Covid RNA and you're positive and quarantined. But you can inject a million-fold more past your mucosa?”

    There’s “no excuse” for regulators to not sequence every vaccine lot, says McKernan, when the costs for doing so have dropped dramatically in recent years.

    “DNA sequencing costs have dropped 100,000 fold in the last decade. They have relaxed the DNA contamination limits 1000-fold in this time frame. It likely only costs $1,000 in reagents for millions-to-billions of dollars worth of product.”


    Source: National Human Genome Research Institute
    DNA sequencing by regulatory agencies is important not just for measuring quantities, says McKernan, but also for determining the type of DNA contamination.

    “Not all DNA is created equal. Some is designed to replicate - when it gets into a cell, it can make more of itself. It's a massive loophole in the regulations that they don't do sequencing. But it's never been cheaper. You can precisely know the nature of the DNA in every single vial.”

    Scientists pick up regulators’ slack

    In the absence of any regulatory appetite for investigating the risks of DNA contamination in the mRNA Covid shots, and particularly the risk of genomic integration, independent scientists have taken the baton.

    “We are writing up our findings and will publish a preprint soon,” says McKernan, who is planning further testing in partnership with Dr Kämmerer. “We’re doing more experiments first. We need to sequence deeper to find out if the integration events are in chromosomal or extra-chromosomal DNA.”

    Dr Buckhaults is also running his own experiment, calling for de-identified samples of tumours or fresh blood from pathology and hematology labs. These samples will be tested for the presence of plasmid DNA contamination, with whole genome sequencing to then be carried out on positive samples to identify genomic integration sites.

    In an email outlining his experiment, Dr Buckhaults told me that he intends to report his findings in a peer-reviewed publication, predicting that the work could take “a few months to a year,” depending on how fast samples come in.

    “I am hopeful to prove my concerns are unwarranted by accumulating a lot of negative data, and of course negative data takes the most time to collect,” he said.

    McKernan says he is aware of other labs running tests for contaminant plasmid DNA integration, but cannot disclose the details at present.

    Decentralisation the future of science?

    McKernan says he has experienced some pushback for publishing his methods and findings in real time via Substack, X, and preprints. But, he believes that making his data available as quickly as possible is a way for the field of science to regain public trust.

    “Many will criticize our disclosure of preliminary findings but we feel this is an insult to the intelligence of the average person,” says McKernan.

    “It's a form of scientific elitism that implies people can't handle the truth and will be scared like sheep if given a glimpse of how the true scientific process is performed. Scientists are 90% of the time wrong but only publish the times when they are right. There is no journal of negative results.“

    In light of the prospect that most published research findings are false (as famously asserted in a 2005 article by Professor John Ioannidis), McKernan questions the value of peer-review, instead favouring replication or refutation in the real world.


    Source: X
    For this reason, McKernan says he has not prioritised peer-reviewed publication for his DNA contamination findings, but is rather focusing on conducting more experiments and releasing the data as he goes - even when it’s incomplete, or requires further experimentation.

    “We were not expecting to find any integration events at this depth of coverage, but they are evident to anyone who downloads our public reads. To not speak to obvious evidence in such data would be irresponsible even when such evidence doesn't 100% answer a given question,” says McKernan.

    Dr Buckhaults takes a somewhat different view. After sharing his initial plasmid DNA contamination findings in a South Carolina Senate hearing in September last year, the video recording broke the internet.

    Believing the hearing to have been private, Dr Buckhaults was alarmed that the widespread distribution of his testimony may have caused “unintended, harmful side effects.” He requested that YouTube take down his testimony video, which is now defunct.


    Source: X
    In our correspondence, Dr Buckhaults stressed that while more research is warranted, he is of the opinion that the public “should not overreact to the news of the plasmid DNA contamination. It's serious enough that scientists need to hustle and figure out if it's causing any health problems now or down the road, but it's not cause for the general public to be alarmed.”

    But, “The reality is that`transfection experiments with contaminated DNA' have been carried out on vast numbers of people around the world in the name of vaccination,” writes Arakawa.

    Perhaps the experiment participants will be the ones to decide if they should be alarmed, or not.

    The FDA was contacted for comment about Dr Kämmerer and McKernan’s new findings, but they did not respond by publication deadline. This article will be updated if comment is received.

    View Kevin McKernan’s write up of his DNA integration experiment (in partnership with Dr Kämmerer) here. Scroll down for links to sequencing data files.

    Pathology and hematology labs wishing to send samples to Dr Buckhaults are invited to contact him at the University of South Carolina.

    Update 23 March 2024: This article was edited to add mention of the Dr David Speicher et al. finding of “billions to hundreds of billions of DNA molecules per dose” of the mRNA vaccines, and the scientists’ concerns that regulatory limits on DNA contamination have not taken LNP transfection into account.


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    From an article I wrote for Umbrella News on this topic last year:

    The TGA maintains that allegations put forward in the case about the potential for mRNA vaccines to alter the recipient’s DNA are unfounded. A spokesperson for the TGA told Umbrella News,

    “COVID-19 vaccines do not alter a person’s DNA. The mRNA in the vaccines does not enter the nucleus of cells and is not integrated into the human genome. Thus, the mRNA does not cause genetic damage or affect the offspring of vaccinated individuals.”

    “The TGA continues to monitor the scientific literature associated with the SARS – CoV-2 virus and the various COVID-19 vaccines approved for use in Australia.”

    With reference to the specific studies cited in the case materials, the TGA pointed Umbrella News to an RMIT ABC Fact Check post from 2022 purporting to ‘debunk’ claims that mRNA jabs are genotoxic. This is the same site that ‘debunked’ claims that COVID vaccines can cause menstrual disruption, before peer-reviewed scientific studies proved that they can and do (the post has not been corrected).

    As evidence that it is “well established” that vaccine mRNA and protein do not enter the nucleus, the TGA provided a link to a Mayo Clinic fact page which provides no studies or scientific evidence in support of its claims.

    The TGA did provide one commentary article published in a scientific journal which pointed out that the in vitro liver cell line study cannot be extrapolated to generalise about in vivo findings (in a human, not a dish) without further research being undertaken.

    Additionally, RMIT FactLab was suspended by Facebook in August 2023 after an uproar over its blatantly biased and factually dubious ‘fact checking’ of media articles relating to the Voice referendum campaign. It also transpired that RMIT FactLab had falsely represented its accreditation with the International Fact-Checking Network as current, when it had in fact lapsed.


    https://news.rebekahbarnett.com.au/p/dna-contamination-in-covid-vaccines
    DNA contamination in Covid vaccines DOES get into human cells, new evidence shows It also appears that the contamination enters the cell nucleus and integrates with human DNA Rebekah Barnett Regulators and fact checkers claim that plasmid DNA contamination in the mRNA Covid vaccines can’t change your genomic DNA, but new evidence suggests that it actually can. The fact checkers assert that DNA contamination poses no risk to your genomic DNA because your body will naturally destroy any contaminant DNA before it even gets into the cells. Even if the contaminant DNA could get into cells, there’s no way it can enter the cell nucleus, where genomic integration events occur, they say. And even if the contaminant DNA could enter the nucleus, which it can’t, it still couldn’t genomically integrate unless specific enzymes are present, they say. However, results from independent lab testing conducted on ovarian cancer cell lines show that contaminant DNA from Pfizer’s Covid vaccine not only crossed into the cells, but that it survived multiple cell divisions. This is suggestive that the contaminant DNA is able to transfect (enter) the cell nucleus, and that it integrated with the human cell DNA. TLDR 1. Scientists claim that Pfizer vaccine contaminant DNA has been detected in ovarian cancer cell line DNA, but they do not yet know if it’s chromosomal (heritable) or extra-chromosomal DNA (not heritable) 2. This is an in vitro (in a lab dish) finding, and needs to be replicated in vivo (in a human patient) 3. As the finding is specific to cancer cell lines, it is not generalisable, but scientists say it may give an indication of what cancer patients in remission could experience after mRNA Covid vaccination 4. This finding calls into question fact checker claims that mRNA Covid vaccine DNA contamination can't enter cells, can't enter the nucleus, and cannot integrate with human DNA. Last year, Boston-based genomics scientist Kevin McKernan made the shocking discovery that the mRNA Covid vaccines are contaminated with excessive levels of plasmid DNA, an artefact of the vaccine production process. McKernan’s findings were soon confirmed by multiple independent labs around the world for both the Pfizer and Moderna mono- and bi-valent vaccines, including lots approved for children, with one Canadian study led by Dr David Speicher concluding that there are “billions to hundreds of billions of DNA molecules per dose.” Scientists including McKernan, University of South Carolina cancer genomics scientist Dr Phillip Buckhaults, and Dr Wafik El-Diery, head of the Cancer Centre at Brown University, expressed concerns that fragments of plasmid DNA contamination could cause adverse events, autoimmune problems and cancers in some patients. But perhaps most significantly, there is also a theoretical risk of the contaminant DNA integrating with patients’ chromosomal DNA and modifying the human genome. This is of particular concern with the Pfizer vaccine, which contains an SV40 enhancer sequence, used in gene therapies “to drive DNA into the nucleus,” explains McKernan. While regulators have taken a ‘wait and see’ approach, independent scientists, including McKernan, have been more proactive, initiating experiments testing for evidence of genomic integration. Now, the first results are in. In an experiment conducted together with German molecular biologist Dr Ulrike Kämmerer, McKernan has detected vaccine contaminant DNA in ovarian cancer cell lines treated with Pfizer’s Covid vaccine. The scientists found a chimeric combination of human ovarian cell line DNA and spike sequence DNA derived from the contaminating plasmid at at least one, and possibly two sites. “If anything, this work has put to bed the question regarding if this contaminant DNA gets into the cell, and the chimeric human and contaminant spike DNA sequences imply it has entered the nucleus,” McKernan says. “The PCR and sequencing data both demonstrate the vaccine is getting into the cell and surviving cell passaging. It is likely bioactive and being partially replicated.” To reach this finding, Dr Kämmerer first treated ovarian cancer cell lines with mRNA Covid vaccines, using cells treated with AstraZeneca and Janssen vaccines as controls. The cells were then ‘passaged’, meaning they were left to divide and replicate numerous times. This has the effect of “rinsing away residual vaccine,” explains McKernan. Immunohistochemistry (IHC) was then performed, a staining process that Dr Kämmerer used to detect levels of spike protein expression produced by the vaccine modified-RNA. This was to confirm that the lipid nanoparticles (LNPs) carrying mod-RNA and plasmid DNA contamination “did their job and delivered the payload,” says McKernan. Measuring how many cells expressed spike protein also allowed the scientists to determine how much of the vaccine to treat the cells with. Immunohistochemistry performed with Pfizer top left, AstraZeneca top right as a control. Source: Kevin McKernan’s Substack Cell lines were then sent in cold storage to McKernan’s Boston lab, where his team used qPCR to screen which samples to sequence the cell line DNA. “What we found is, [contaminant] DNA that is getting transfected into ovarian cancer cell lines is replicating in the cells,” says McKernan, noting that the ratio of vaccine contaminant DNA to human cell DNA was “higher than we expected.” Chimeric sequences of human and vaccine contaminant DNA were detected at two sites: chromosomes 9 and 12, with the evidence for the latter being the strongest. “But we don't know if it's extra-chromosomal or whether it's chromosomal because of the Illumina (short read) method we used to sequence,” explains McKernan. Source: Kevin McKernan’s Substack Extra-chromosomal DNA is not part of the chromosome, and is therefore less likely to replicate and to be heritable. Chromosomal DNA, on the other hand, is heritable and more likely to be replicated. A third category, mitochondrial DNA, is heritable, but only from the maternal line. You can read a detailed account of methods and findings via McKernan’s Substack article, ‘Vaccine targeted qPCR of Cancer Cell Lines treated with BNT162b2.’ ‘Major advance,’ but clinical implications are limited McKernan emphasises that these findings cannot be generalised, stating that “it is too early to make comments on the clinical implications.” “The study is performed in ovarian cancer cell lines. It is not performed in patient cells, but this is a proxy for what might happen in an ovarian cancer patient who's in remission,” says McKernan, especially as there is evidence that the LNPs go to the ovaries. The risk for patients in this scenario is that integration events with contaminant DNA might cause aberrant cell growth, which poses a risk to immune suppression of new cancer cells. McKernan notes that his experiment only picked up on putative integration events that persisted after multiple cell replications. That is to say, the scientists were not able to detect integration events that may have occurred, but then died off immediately. At the moment, no one knows how many integration events might be occurring, or what effect that would have on patients. “The unknowns are just exponential,” says McKernan. The cancer cell line experiment can be said to be “a microcosm of genome integration of contaminated DNA,” said Japanese molecular oncology scientist Hiroshi Arakawa, in his own analysis of McKernan and Dr Kämmerer’s experiment, published to his popular science blog on which he shares critical views on Covid vaccine safety. Akira calls the two possible integrations observed in Dr Kämmerer’s experiment a “major advance” laying the ground for further experimentation. “What happens in cultured cells can also occur in normal cells, and a wide variety of abnormalities can occur depending on the site of genome integration,” such as “the induction of cancer or malignant transformation,” he wrote (translated from Japanese to English). LNPs deliver contaminant DNA straight to the cells A key assumption underlying claims that mRNA Covid vaccine contamination cannot enter the cell nucleus, and cannot genomically integrate with host DNA, is that the contamination will never make it into dividing cells, which would be required for integration to occur. This is based on the assumption that the LNPs containing both mod-RNA and contaminant DNA mostly stay in the muscle at the injection site. As muscle cells do not divide, there’s no problem, the logic goes. This is misleading, however, as Pfizer’s own biodistribution data shows that the LNPs enter the blood and every major organ system, including the ovaries, as mentioned above. While it is true that muscle cells don’t divide, LNPs distributed around the body can transfect any number of dividing cells in various organ systems. Table 4-2. shows biodistribution of LNPs, Pfizer Nonclinical Evaluation Report, 2021 From there, it’s only a matter of time before the LNP contents get into the cell nucleus, says McKernan. “In any dividing cell, the nucleus dissolves. So, when people say the DNA can get into the cytoplasm [inside the cell membrane] but won't get into the nucleus, well, in any dividing cell, it will end up getting into the nucleus.” It is possible that the dissolution of the cell nucleus during division is the mechanism underlying McKernan and Dr Kämmerer’s observed passaging of contaminant DNA, but further research will be required to confirm or disprove this hypothesis. Because of the effectiveness of LNPs in delivering their contents into cells, McKernan, Dr Buckhaults and Dr Speicher have questioned the suitability of the current regulatory limits on contaminant DNA in vaccines, which were set prior to the introduction of LNP technology in vaccines. Regulators unconcerned I sent McKernan’s Substack article documenting the new DNA integration findings to Australia’s drug regulator, the Therapeutic Goods Administration, for comment. The TGA did not address the new findings, but a spokesperson from the TGA responded, “The Department of Health and Aged Care has every confidence in the safety, quality and efficacy of the various approved COVID-19 vaccines for use in Australia. The TGA’s assessment of all vaccines is based upon high quality evidence, including studies and reviews published in peer-reviewed scientific and clinical journals.” However, when asked previously to provide evidence for its position that Covid vaccines pose no risk of DNA integration, the TGA provided no peer-reviewed scientific evidence to support its claims. Instead, the TGA provided links to a Mayo Clinic fact page with no scientific citations, an article by the discredited RMIT FactLab, and a scientific commentary article suggesting that in vitro findings cannot be generalised. Furthermore, TGA has not been forthcoming with the evidence it does hold. When asked to release Covid vaccine batch testing results under Freedom of Information, the regulator provided all 74 pages - fully redacted. In the US, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) denied that contaminant DNA in the mRNA vaccines can enter the nucleus or pose any threat to patients’ genomic DNA, in a response to concerns raised by Florida Surgeon General, Dr Joseph A. Ladapo in December of last year. Additionally, the FDA misleadingly refuted the presence of SV40 proteins in the vaccines, when in fact Dr Ladapo raised concerns over the presence of an SV40 enchancer sequence in the Pfizer vaccine, as confirmed by Health Canada and numerous independent laboratories. Such ham-fisted mischaracterisation of a gene therapy sequence by the FDA is suggestive of either gross incompetence, or a disinformation play. Both are concerning. Science journalist Maryanne Demasi reported, in November last year, that the FDA shut down her enquiries into the DNA contamination matter, refusing to confirm if it found levels of DNA that exceeded acceptable levels, or if it was investigating further. The presence of contamination has been officially acknowledged by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) and Health Canada, with the latter also acknowledging the presence of the SV40 enhancer sequence, though both regulators deny that the amounts exceed regulatory limits, or that the DNA contamination poses any risk. ‘No excuse’ for ignoring ‘screaming hot signal’ Instead of denying excessive DNA levels and deferring to manufacturers’ reported test results, regulators should run their own qPCR testing on batch lots, says McKernan. Then, “they would see what everyone else is seeing, which is that sometimes the CT scores come out as low as 13… that’s a screaming hot signal.” “As a reference, the Covid test would call people positive at 33-35,” McKernan explains. “That’s a million-fold difference (20 CTs). A million-fold less Covid RNA and you're positive and quarantined. But you can inject a million-fold more past your mucosa?” There’s “no excuse” for regulators to not sequence every vaccine lot, says McKernan, when the costs for doing so have dropped dramatically in recent years. “DNA sequencing costs have dropped 100,000 fold in the last decade. They have relaxed the DNA contamination limits 1000-fold in this time frame. It likely only costs $1,000 in reagents for millions-to-billions of dollars worth of product.” Source: National Human Genome Research Institute DNA sequencing by regulatory agencies is important not just for measuring quantities, says McKernan, but also for determining the type of DNA contamination. “Not all DNA is created equal. Some is designed to replicate - when it gets into a cell, it can make more of itself. It's a massive loophole in the regulations that they don't do sequencing. But it's never been cheaper. You can precisely know the nature of the DNA in every single vial.” Scientists pick up regulators’ slack In the absence of any regulatory appetite for investigating the risks of DNA contamination in the mRNA Covid shots, and particularly the risk of genomic integration, independent scientists have taken the baton. “We are writing up our findings and will publish a preprint soon,” says McKernan, who is planning further testing in partnership with Dr Kämmerer. “We’re doing more experiments first. We need to sequence deeper to find out if the integration events are in chromosomal or extra-chromosomal DNA.” Dr Buckhaults is also running his own experiment, calling for de-identified samples of tumours or fresh blood from pathology and hematology labs. These samples will be tested for the presence of plasmid DNA contamination, with whole genome sequencing to then be carried out on positive samples to identify genomic integration sites. In an email outlining his experiment, Dr Buckhaults told me that he intends to report his findings in a peer-reviewed publication, predicting that the work could take “a few months to a year,” depending on how fast samples come in. “I am hopeful to prove my concerns are unwarranted by accumulating a lot of negative data, and of course negative data takes the most time to collect,” he said. McKernan says he is aware of other labs running tests for contaminant plasmid DNA integration, but cannot disclose the details at present. Decentralisation the future of science? McKernan says he has experienced some pushback for publishing his methods and findings in real time via Substack, X, and preprints. But, he believes that making his data available as quickly as possible is a way for the field of science to regain public trust. “Many will criticize our disclosure of preliminary findings but we feel this is an insult to the intelligence of the average person,” says McKernan. “It's a form of scientific elitism that implies people can't handle the truth and will be scared like sheep if given a glimpse of how the true scientific process is performed. Scientists are 90% of the time wrong but only publish the times when they are right. There is no journal of negative results.“ In light of the prospect that most published research findings are false (as famously asserted in a 2005 article by Professor John Ioannidis), McKernan questions the value of peer-review, instead favouring replication or refutation in the real world. Source: X For this reason, McKernan says he has not prioritised peer-reviewed publication for his DNA contamination findings, but is rather focusing on conducting more experiments and releasing the data as he goes - even when it’s incomplete, or requires further experimentation. “We were not expecting to find any integration events at this depth of coverage, but they are evident to anyone who downloads our public reads. To not speak to obvious evidence in such data would be irresponsible even when such evidence doesn't 100% answer a given question,” says McKernan. Dr Buckhaults takes a somewhat different view. After sharing his initial plasmid DNA contamination findings in a South Carolina Senate hearing in September last year, the video recording broke the internet. Believing the hearing to have been private, Dr Buckhaults was alarmed that the widespread distribution of his testimony may have caused “unintended, harmful side effects.” He requested that YouTube take down his testimony video, which is now defunct. Source: X In our correspondence, Dr Buckhaults stressed that while more research is warranted, he is of the opinion that the public “should not overreact to the news of the plasmid DNA contamination. It's serious enough that scientists need to hustle and figure out if it's causing any health problems now or down the road, but it's not cause for the general public to be alarmed.” But, “The reality is that`transfection experiments with contaminated DNA' have been carried out on vast numbers of people around the world in the name of vaccination,” writes Arakawa. Perhaps the experiment participants will be the ones to decide if they should be alarmed, or not. The FDA was contacted for comment about Dr Kämmerer and McKernan’s new findings, but they did not respond by publication deadline. This article will be updated if comment is received. View Kevin McKernan’s write up of his DNA integration experiment (in partnership with Dr Kämmerer) here. Scroll down for links to sequencing data files. Pathology and hematology labs wishing to send samples to Dr Buckhaults are invited to contact him at the University of South Carolina. Update 23 March 2024: This article was edited to add mention of the Dr David Speicher et al. finding of “billions to hundreds of billions of DNA molecules per dose” of the mRNA vaccines, and the scientists’ concerns that regulatory limits on DNA contamination have not taken LNP transfection into account. To support my work, make a one-off contribution to DDU via my Kofi account and/or subscribe. Thanks! Follow me on X Follow me on Instagram 1 From an article I wrote for Umbrella News on this topic last year: The TGA maintains that allegations put forward in the case about the potential for mRNA vaccines to alter the recipient’s DNA are unfounded. A spokesperson for the TGA told Umbrella News, “COVID-19 vaccines do not alter a person’s DNA. The mRNA in the vaccines does not enter the nucleus of cells and is not integrated into the human genome. Thus, the mRNA does not cause genetic damage or affect the offspring of vaccinated individuals.” “The TGA continues to monitor the scientific literature associated with the SARS – CoV-2 virus and the various COVID-19 vaccines approved for use in Australia.” With reference to the specific studies cited in the case materials, the TGA pointed Umbrella News to an RMIT ABC Fact Check post from 2022 purporting to ‘debunk’ claims that mRNA jabs are genotoxic. This is the same site that ‘debunked’ claims that COVID vaccines can cause menstrual disruption, before peer-reviewed scientific studies proved that they can and do (the post has not been corrected). As evidence that it is “well established” that vaccine mRNA and protein do not enter the nucleus, the TGA provided a link to a Mayo Clinic fact page which provides no studies or scientific evidence in support of its claims. The TGA did provide one commentary article published in a scientific journal which pointed out that the in vitro liver cell line study cannot be extrapolated to generalise about in vivo findings (in a human, not a dish) without further research being undertaken. Additionally, RMIT FactLab was suspended by Facebook in August 2023 after an uproar over its blatantly biased and factually dubious ‘fact checking’ of media articles relating to the Voice referendum campaign. It also transpired that RMIT FactLab had falsely represented its accreditation with the International Fact-Checking Network as current, when it had in fact lapsed. https://news.rebekahbarnett.com.au/p/dna-contamination-in-covid-vaccines
    NEWS.REBEKAHBARNETT.COM.AU
    DNA contamination in Covid vaccines DOES get into human cells, new evidence shows
    It also appears that the contamination enters the cell nucleus and integrates with human DNA
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  • Terrorist Attack in Moscow --- Who Did It?, by Larry Johnson - The Unz Review

    On the “Usual Suspects” list we have Ukraine and we have ISIS. A good case can be made for both. I am posting three videos — some of it is repetitive — that discusses the attack and the very odd behavior of the Biden Administration. Let’s go through the chronology of events.

    On March 7 US Embassy Moscow issued the following alert:

    The Embassy is monitoring reports that extremists have imminent plans to target large gatherings in Moscow, to include concerts, and U.S. citizens should be advised to avoid large gatherings over the next 48 hours.

    What you need to understand is that this warning was not issued at the discretion of the embassy. This was approved in Washington, DC at Main State and would have required some intelligence that was deemed somewhat specific and “credible.” When I was doing this job at State Counter Terrorism in 1990, this was in the aftermath of the bombing of Pan, 103. It was widely believed in the public that state department, and the CIA had information in advance about the terrorist bombing of that plane, and warned our person out not to get on board. That was not true but it did raise the issue of when, and how to warn the public about a potential threat. We came up with a system that required specific and credible intelligence. The more specific and credible the intelligence, the less need to warn the public. Consider, for example, that if we knew a terrorist attack was going to be carried out on Friday at a public concert hall by a particular group, we would be able to alert appropriate authorities and take precautions to intercept the attack without alarming the public.

    On the other hand, if the information was not in great detail, but did come from a credible source, then we would take the time to put together a public warning. That is what happened when the US Embassy Moscow issued the warning on 7 March. They had information they thought was credible, but not terribly specific. This raises a key question — did the United States warn Russian authorities? Normally, when I was doing the job, we would share the information with the appropriate government and law enforcement authorities, in order to try to prevent the attack. Based on public comments by Maria Zakharova and Dimitri Medvedev, following the March 7, warning, and following today’s attack, it appears that the United States did not share any of its information with Russia. I would note there is a Wall Street Journal report tonight, stating that the United States did warn, but Russian authorities insist that they were not provided with an Intel heads up.

    What makes the entire situation so bizarre and questionable in terms of what the United States knew, and when it knew it, is that the State Department issued a statement within two hours of the bombing — remember, we still did not know how many attackers, what kind of weapons, how many casualties, and whether or not, they were hostages — declaring that Ukraine was not responsible for this attack. How did State Department know that? It’s strongly suggests that the United States had intelligence, which did not share with Moscow.

    Then we have this very unusual X message (formerly Twitter) that was posted at 3:30 AM this morning, 22 March, by OSINTdefender (which I think of has a CIA front for spreading messages the CIA wants out there):

    Members of U.S. National Security Council and the White House have reportedly started to become Increasingly Frustrated by “Unauthorized Brazen Actions” taken by Ukraine against Russia, including their recent Campaign of Long-Range Drone Strikes having Targeted at least 25 Oil Refineries, Terminals, Depots and Storage Facilities across Western Russia; with some Biden Administration Officials believing these Strikes will cause a Spike in Global Oil Prices as well as Significant Escalation and Retaliation against Ukraine like was seen during tonight’s Large-Scale Missile Attack.

    Do you think that is just a happy coincidence that the Biden White House is bemoaning Ukraine taking “unauthorized brazen actions” on the same day there is a massive terrorist attack in Moscow? I don’t believe in coincidence. I think the Biden ministration was trying to get out ahead of an attack that they knew was coming.

    Some claims have emerged late in the day with ISIS, allegedly, taking credit for the attack. What makes that interesting is that we have evidence that some members of ISIS have been fighting in Ukraine against Russia, so this does not necessarily exonerate, either Ukraine or the United States.

    Anyway, I deal with these issues from different perspectives in the following videos:

    Video Link

    Here’s the Judge and Ray:



    And Nima:



    https://www.unz.com/article/terrorist-attack-in-moscow-who-did-it/
    Terrorist Attack in Moscow --- Who Did It?, by Larry Johnson - The Unz Review On the “Usual Suspects” list we have Ukraine and we have ISIS. A good case can be made for both. I am posting three videos — some of it is repetitive — that discusses the attack and the very odd behavior of the Biden Administration. Let’s go through the chronology of events. On March 7 US Embassy Moscow issued the following alert: The Embassy is monitoring reports that extremists have imminent plans to target large gatherings in Moscow, to include concerts, and U.S. citizens should be advised to avoid large gatherings over the next 48 hours. What you need to understand is that this warning was not issued at the discretion of the embassy. This was approved in Washington, DC at Main State and would have required some intelligence that was deemed somewhat specific and “credible.” When I was doing this job at State Counter Terrorism in 1990, this was in the aftermath of the bombing of Pan, 103. It was widely believed in the public that state department, and the CIA had information in advance about the terrorist bombing of that plane, and warned our person out not to get on board. That was not true but it did raise the issue of when, and how to warn the public about a potential threat. We came up with a system that required specific and credible intelligence. The more specific and credible the intelligence, the less need to warn the public. Consider, for example, that if we knew a terrorist attack was going to be carried out on Friday at a public concert hall by a particular group, we would be able to alert appropriate authorities and take precautions to intercept the attack without alarming the public. On the other hand, if the information was not in great detail, but did come from a credible source, then we would take the time to put together a public warning. That is what happened when the US Embassy Moscow issued the warning on 7 March. They had information they thought was credible, but not terribly specific. This raises a key question — did the United States warn Russian authorities? Normally, when I was doing the job, we would share the information with the appropriate government and law enforcement authorities, in order to try to prevent the attack. Based on public comments by Maria Zakharova and Dimitri Medvedev, following the March 7, warning, and following today’s attack, it appears that the United States did not share any of its information with Russia. I would note there is a Wall Street Journal report tonight, stating that the United States did warn, but Russian authorities insist that they were not provided with an Intel heads up. What makes the entire situation so bizarre and questionable in terms of what the United States knew, and when it knew it, is that the State Department issued a statement within two hours of the bombing — remember, we still did not know how many attackers, what kind of weapons, how many casualties, and whether or not, they were hostages — declaring that Ukraine was not responsible for this attack. How did State Department know that? It’s strongly suggests that the United States had intelligence, which did not share with Moscow. Then we have this very unusual X message (formerly Twitter) that was posted at 3:30 AM this morning, 22 March, by OSINTdefender (which I think of has a CIA front for spreading messages the CIA wants out there): Members of U.S. National Security Council and the White House have reportedly started to become Increasingly Frustrated by “Unauthorized Brazen Actions” taken by Ukraine against Russia, including their recent Campaign of Long-Range Drone Strikes having Targeted at least 25 Oil Refineries, Terminals, Depots and Storage Facilities across Western Russia; with some Biden Administration Officials believing these Strikes will cause a Spike in Global Oil Prices as well as Significant Escalation and Retaliation against Ukraine like was seen during tonight’s Large-Scale Missile Attack. Do you think that is just a happy coincidence that the Biden White House is bemoaning Ukraine taking “unauthorized brazen actions” on the same day there is a massive terrorist attack in Moscow? I don’t believe in coincidence. I think the Biden ministration was trying to get out ahead of an attack that they knew was coming. Some claims have emerged late in the day with ISIS, allegedly, taking credit for the attack. What makes that interesting is that we have evidence that some members of ISIS have been fighting in Ukraine against Russia, so this does not necessarily exonerate, either Ukraine or the United States. Anyway, I deal with these issues from different perspectives in the following videos: Video Link Here’s the Judge and Ray: And Nima: https://www.unz.com/article/terrorist-attack-in-moscow-who-did-it/
    WWW.UNZ.COM
    Terrorist Attack in Moscow — Who Did It?
    On the “Usual Suspects” list we have Ukraine and we have ISIS. A good case can be made for both. I am posting three videos — some of it is repetitive — that discusses the attack and the very odd behavior of the Biden Administration. Let’s go through the chronology of events. On March 7 US Embassy Moscow issued the following alert: The Embassy is monitoring reports that extremists have imminent plans to target large gatherings in Moscow, to include concerts, and U.S. citizens should be advised to avoid large gatherings over the next 48 hours. What you need to understand
    Like
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  • What a War Requires
    Yes, It's About Resources

    Dr Naomi Wolf

    Dear Readers, Dear Extended Family

    I am grateful that this Substack — which, if you read the comment section, is also one that is a home or meeting-place for many of the most interesting and idealistic people on the Internet — has 83,500 plus subscribers. That is almost the subscriber base of The New Republic. It had 737,000 plus views in the last 30 days — 249,000 plus more than the month prior. That is more views than the number of the audience of CNN.

    Every reader is equally precious to me. But you all count on me — you tell me this — to do all I can to affect national and even global outcomes. From the messages I receive, leaders from all walks of life do indeed read this Substack — and so it is having some impact on the public discussion and perhaps even on public outcomes.

    But this Substack has only a few more than 4000 paid subscribers.

    Why does this matter, more than to my personal finances?

    As you know, I believe — I think at this point it is incontrovertible - that a war is being waged upon us, one that will soon become a “hot war.” My husband Brian O’Shea, who cohosts the podcast “Unrestricted Invasion” with JJ Carrell, is documenting the positioning of military-age or gangland-age illegal-immigrant young men, in barracks-type situations in strategic points around the country. This week he went undercover to a budget hotel in Massachusetts, where security and the hotel staff sought to prevent him from filming what was happening inside in relation to scores of illegal incomers. He was subsequently followed by a maroon sedan that pulled up right as he was leaving the hotel; the drivers proceeded to wait til he was his car, and then followed him across three different exits til he shook them off.

    Brian was also confronted by security, and then followed, earlier this year, when he went to document a facility in Brooklyn, Floyd Bennett Field, an area with over 1000 flat acres of land, where illegal immigrants are being housed in military-style facilities. Illegal immigrants are being housed at Chicago’s O’Hare airport, a sensitive strategic location for a possible attack on America, if there ever was one. Illegal immigrants, disproportionately fighting-age men, are being housed for months in hotels in midtown Manhattan, all basic expenses paid and with cleaning services.

    As they say, wake up and smell the coffee. This is not a domestic policy issue any longer — ie, what are these illegal immigrants getting that your legal immigrant parents or grandparents, your enslaved great-grandparents, did not get? To anyone who has ever been in a combat area, this set of situations depicts what is obviously a military or terrorist set of staging areas. Or, to be conservative, this set of landscapes has all the hallmarks of depicting military or terrorist staging areas.

    Meanwhile, the whips are being brought down on the shoulders of the last standing dissidents in the United States and globally. A Canadian court ordered psychologist and commentator Jordan Peterson to be forced into a re-education program. Literal Marxism. Ethical physician Dr Kulvinder Kaur Gill, who was critical of the mRNA injections, has been hit with a $1 million dollar fine after her libel suit in defense of her reputation, failed. She was forced to mobilize an online donations campaign in order not to lose her house. Under the guise of a credit review, as he points out, researcher and inventor of the mRNA vaccine Dr Robert Malone has been hit with a letter from payment processor Stripe, demanding his bank records. He was told that it will cost $100,000 to fight it. Other dissident voices on Substack, including conservative voices, are being hit in similar ways.

    Governor Hochul declared that National Guard would take on some civil policing roles in New York State, and she is appealing the court decision that prevented her from opening quarantine camps that could detain New Yorkers without trial or even without infection, indefinitely. If she prevails, and if the WHO treaty that declares WHO “pandemic” requirements superior to national or state law prevails in May, the National Guard (or the WHO’s own mercenaries) could show up at any New Yorker’s house, and this is the state where I live; and compel him or her to be transported to a detention facility, and that would be that.

    Why am I presenting all of this to you? Because things are getting very scary and we need your help.

    This Substack does not just provide personal income for me. It is the source of funds to meet costs for the independent news and opinion site DailyClout.io and for BillCam when our demands exceed our resources.

    Gloria Steinem says to look at your checkbook to see if you are walking your talk morally, and my checkbook speaks volumes. I had hoped by the age of 61, after decades of training for my profession, honing my craft as a writer, and fighting for humanity and for humane values, that I would be able to look at my checkbook records and see mostly expenses for travel, with other records perhaps of dinners in some lovely restaurants, an occasional nice dress or two, and funds devoted to caring for elderly relatives.

    But my primary expenditure is not for any of that. Most of the money I earn goes to scrambling to meet the extraordinary and unpredictable costs that running a war from the trenches of DailyClout can involve, and many of these high costs arise unpredictably. Remember, too, that those who use their own resources to oppose and harass us and me personally, include one of the biggest companies in the world, not to mention the United States government, including its justice arm — and state governments. One of our legal letters is against the Justice Department. One of our lawsuits is against the Biden administration, including the CDC.

    Though we are doing impressively well as a startup helmed by three people, and punching far above our weight, we have, as you know, bills that can top six figures for the various lawsuits we are waging on your behalf.

    To keep a dissident news startup — one that also crafts draft bills and passes them, as nonprofits cannot do, which activity involves traversing a minefield of FEC restrictions — so scrupulously kosher that it can’t be brought down by government tripwires, is itself a legal bill for tens of thousands.

    Though we are a lean machine, our technical costs are substantial. Our API, the feed from which our legislative technology that lets you see, share and act on any bill, costs thousands of dollars per quarter. Our developers have created tools — the latest being the extraordinary game changer LegiSector, at https://www.legisector.com (due to suppression, you need to cut and paste the whole url in order to see it) — that sweep away all obfuscation from state and federal legislation, and allow you to pass, share or stop bills from the ease of your own desktop, or even from your handheld. This is also a tens of thousands of dollars a year commitment. As we push to launch this revolutionary tool, Google appears to be suppressing it so thoroughly that it is difficult for us to let the world know that everything has changed now, as interviewers who have covered this tool are telling me, when it comes to legislative transparency. We need a marketing campaign in the tens of thousands to break through this censorship by another one of the biggest companies on Earth.

    It is my sleepless nights, no one else’s, that are involved in trying to figure out how.

    Then there are the fights to protect the reputation that allows me to lead this company and its mission and tools, forward; I was forced to spend tens of thousands on a lawsuit against Twitter for suppressing my (accurate, important) warnings about harms to women from the mRNA injections. My co-plaintiff? President Donald Trump. (Sadly I do not have the resources for legal representation, that my co-plaintiff does.)

    The point of all of the above is that staying credible, meaning fighting the constant government- and nonprofit-sponsored attacks on the credibility of my and my company’s reputations; staying on the right side of all government regulations, so that no harm can come to me or the company; fighting in the courts so that a precedent can be set to protect all Americans from the government leaning on private companies to destroy them — fighting Google’s algorithms with creative workarounds; fighting laws that constantly seek to imprison or bankrupt us — all of this, at times, as you know because I have shared it with you before, can take a terrible financial and psychic/energetic toll.

    It is tempting to just walk away and, to paraphrase Voltaire, “cultivate my own garden.”

    But to stay in these trenches and achieve it at all, all that so many of you tell me you are counting on, requires a robust and reliable stream of resources if we are to stay alive in this culture of lies and erasures.

    Think about the lives we have saved. Maybe yours or your loved ones. Think about whether anyone else’s technology lets you see and act on any state or Federal bill, or protect your investments; with both BillCam and LegiSector offering free searches.

    Think about whether anyone else is soliciting citizens’ input on draft model bills, hiring lawyers, drafting and passing them, in the way we do. Remember, nonprofits can give you a tax deduction, but they cannot lobby. They must stop short of actual political action with legislation and legislators. The fact that we aren’t a nonprofit allows us to lobby and draft and pass bills — a superpower — but makes it much harder for us to raise donation funding.

    Think about this Substack, for that matter. Did my writing help to balance and reassure you in this nightmarish struggle? Did it inform you of important issues that could affect your family? Did you find community and spiritual strength here?

    What would your world be like without my voice, or without DailyClout’s voice and tools and advocacy?

    There would be a lot more darkness, and you and your family’s position and knowledge base would be weakened. I do not think that is too strong a statement.

    If you want these voices and institutions to keep fighting this war, mine but also others’, there is no alternative but to support them with, dare I say it, your actual money.

    I know that many people cannot afford $8 a month. But many of the 83,000 subscribers who are now free, could afford to upgrade to the status of paid subscriber. And the difference between 4 per cent of my readers being paid subscribers and eight per cent being paid subscribers, is the difference between a precarious and easily extinguished position on the battlefield, versus a more secure one that can continue winning victory after victory for you.

    And I will tell you, speaking both as a writer and on behalf of a dissident company, without your financial support it is not only materially unsustainable to fight on, but emotionally unsustainable, as the battles grow more serious and more costly. Without your help, over time, the strain of trying to figure out, during many months, how to pay our lawyers, as well as our API invoices and our developers and our travel to statehouses to lobby for freedom for you, will simply become too great.

    We need your help in spiritual and emotional as well as in material ways.

    You should support us not as a charity but because our our approach works. Because of our draft Five Freedoms bill, which passed in 33 states in 2021, you do not have vaccine passports in the US, and kids went back to school earlier than they might have done. Our Election Integrity bill, which you all shared, has cosponsors in Wyoming, was introduced and defeated in Maine (but a successor has been tapped to re-introduce it in the Fall), and three other states, Michigan, Alabama and North Dakota, have citizens and legislators acting to push it forward. The Pfizer Papers comes out in May. The manuscript, which Amy Kelly and I edited, is 500 pages long. We edited 96 reports from the WarRoom/DailyClout Pfizer Documents Research Team, who in turn had reviewed 450,000 pages of internal Pfizer documents. They revealed the greatest crime against humanity in history in exhaustive detail, affecting people and governments worldwide. Their work is cited or used without citation by dozens of other freedom advocates, and legislators. And booster uptake is now down to 4%; Pfizer’s profits ground to pre-2016 levels.

    We saved, together, with your help, what may turn out to be millions of lives and countless unborn babies.

    But to continue, I need your help; seriously; now just now but into the future.

    If you can afford, it, and if the above is meaningful to you at all, do please upgrade your subscription from free to paid.

    The war is here, and you need warriors fighting for you, who are not barefoot in the snow, but who have warm clothing, and weapons, and ammunition.

    https://naomiwolf.substack.com/p/what-a-war-requires
    What a War Requires Yes, It's About Resources Dr Naomi Wolf Dear Readers, Dear Extended Family I am grateful that this Substack — which, if you read the comment section, is also one that is a home or meeting-place for many of the most interesting and idealistic people on the Internet — has 83,500 plus subscribers. That is almost the subscriber base of The New Republic. It had 737,000 plus views in the last 30 days — 249,000 plus more than the month prior. That is more views than the number of the audience of CNN. Every reader is equally precious to me. But you all count on me — you tell me this — to do all I can to affect national and even global outcomes. From the messages I receive, leaders from all walks of life do indeed read this Substack — and so it is having some impact on the public discussion and perhaps even on public outcomes. But this Substack has only a few more than 4000 paid subscribers. Why does this matter, more than to my personal finances? As you know, I believe — I think at this point it is incontrovertible - that a war is being waged upon us, one that will soon become a “hot war.” My husband Brian O’Shea, who cohosts the podcast “Unrestricted Invasion” with JJ Carrell, is documenting the positioning of military-age or gangland-age illegal-immigrant young men, in barracks-type situations in strategic points around the country. This week he went undercover to a budget hotel in Massachusetts, where security and the hotel staff sought to prevent him from filming what was happening inside in relation to scores of illegal incomers. He was subsequently followed by a maroon sedan that pulled up right as he was leaving the hotel; the drivers proceeded to wait til he was his car, and then followed him across three different exits til he shook them off. Brian was also confronted by security, and then followed, earlier this year, when he went to document a facility in Brooklyn, Floyd Bennett Field, an area with over 1000 flat acres of land, where illegal immigrants are being housed in military-style facilities. Illegal immigrants are being housed at Chicago’s O’Hare airport, a sensitive strategic location for a possible attack on America, if there ever was one. Illegal immigrants, disproportionately fighting-age men, are being housed for months in hotels in midtown Manhattan, all basic expenses paid and with cleaning services. As they say, wake up and smell the coffee. This is not a domestic policy issue any longer — ie, what are these illegal immigrants getting that your legal immigrant parents or grandparents, your enslaved great-grandparents, did not get? To anyone who has ever been in a combat area, this set of situations depicts what is obviously a military or terrorist set of staging areas. Or, to be conservative, this set of landscapes has all the hallmarks of depicting military or terrorist staging areas. Meanwhile, the whips are being brought down on the shoulders of the last standing dissidents in the United States and globally. A Canadian court ordered psychologist and commentator Jordan Peterson to be forced into a re-education program. Literal Marxism. Ethical physician Dr Kulvinder Kaur Gill, who was critical of the mRNA injections, has been hit with a $1 million dollar fine after her libel suit in defense of her reputation, failed. She was forced to mobilize an online donations campaign in order not to lose her house. Under the guise of a credit review, as he points out, researcher and inventor of the mRNA vaccine Dr Robert Malone has been hit with a letter from payment processor Stripe, demanding his bank records. He was told that it will cost $100,000 to fight it. Other dissident voices on Substack, including conservative voices, are being hit in similar ways. Governor Hochul declared that National Guard would take on some civil policing roles in New York State, and she is appealing the court decision that prevented her from opening quarantine camps that could detain New Yorkers without trial or even without infection, indefinitely. If she prevails, and if the WHO treaty that declares WHO “pandemic” requirements superior to national or state law prevails in May, the National Guard (or the WHO’s own mercenaries) could show up at any New Yorker’s house, and this is the state where I live; and compel him or her to be transported to a detention facility, and that would be that. Why am I presenting all of this to you? Because things are getting very scary and we need your help. This Substack does not just provide personal income for me. It is the source of funds to meet costs for the independent news and opinion site DailyClout.io and for BillCam when our demands exceed our resources. Gloria Steinem says to look at your checkbook to see if you are walking your talk morally, and my checkbook speaks volumes. I had hoped by the age of 61, after decades of training for my profession, honing my craft as a writer, and fighting for humanity and for humane values, that I would be able to look at my checkbook records and see mostly expenses for travel, with other records perhaps of dinners in some lovely restaurants, an occasional nice dress or two, and funds devoted to caring for elderly relatives. But my primary expenditure is not for any of that. Most of the money I earn goes to scrambling to meet the extraordinary and unpredictable costs that running a war from the trenches of DailyClout can involve, and many of these high costs arise unpredictably. Remember, too, that those who use their own resources to oppose and harass us and me personally, include one of the biggest companies in the world, not to mention the United States government, including its justice arm — and state governments. One of our legal letters is against the Justice Department. One of our lawsuits is against the Biden administration, including the CDC. Though we are doing impressively well as a startup helmed by three people, and punching far above our weight, we have, as you know, bills that can top six figures for the various lawsuits we are waging on your behalf. To keep a dissident news startup — one that also crafts draft bills and passes them, as nonprofits cannot do, which activity involves traversing a minefield of FEC restrictions — so scrupulously kosher that it can’t be brought down by government tripwires, is itself a legal bill for tens of thousands. Though we are a lean machine, our technical costs are substantial. Our API, the feed from which our legislative technology that lets you see, share and act on any bill, costs thousands of dollars per quarter. Our developers have created tools — the latest being the extraordinary game changer LegiSector, at https://www.legisector.com (due to suppression, you need to cut and paste the whole url in order to see it) — that sweep away all obfuscation from state and federal legislation, and allow you to pass, share or stop bills from the ease of your own desktop, or even from your handheld. This is also a tens of thousands of dollars a year commitment. As we push to launch this revolutionary tool, Google appears to be suppressing it so thoroughly that it is difficult for us to let the world know that everything has changed now, as interviewers who have covered this tool are telling me, when it comes to legislative transparency. We need a marketing campaign in the tens of thousands to break through this censorship by another one of the biggest companies on Earth. It is my sleepless nights, no one else’s, that are involved in trying to figure out how. Then there are the fights to protect the reputation that allows me to lead this company and its mission and tools, forward; I was forced to spend tens of thousands on a lawsuit against Twitter for suppressing my (accurate, important) warnings about harms to women from the mRNA injections. My co-plaintiff? President Donald Trump. (Sadly I do not have the resources for legal representation, that my co-plaintiff does.) The point of all of the above is that staying credible, meaning fighting the constant government- and nonprofit-sponsored attacks on the credibility of my and my company’s reputations; staying on the right side of all government regulations, so that no harm can come to me or the company; fighting in the courts so that a precedent can be set to protect all Americans from the government leaning on private companies to destroy them — fighting Google’s algorithms with creative workarounds; fighting laws that constantly seek to imprison or bankrupt us — all of this, at times, as you know because I have shared it with you before, can take a terrible financial and psychic/energetic toll. It is tempting to just walk away and, to paraphrase Voltaire, “cultivate my own garden.” But to stay in these trenches and achieve it at all, all that so many of you tell me you are counting on, requires a robust and reliable stream of resources if we are to stay alive in this culture of lies and erasures. Think about the lives we have saved. Maybe yours or your loved ones. Think about whether anyone else’s technology lets you see and act on any state or Federal bill, or protect your investments; with both BillCam and LegiSector offering free searches. Think about whether anyone else is soliciting citizens’ input on draft model bills, hiring lawyers, drafting and passing them, in the way we do. Remember, nonprofits can give you a tax deduction, but they cannot lobby. They must stop short of actual political action with legislation and legislators. The fact that we aren’t a nonprofit allows us to lobby and draft and pass bills — a superpower — but makes it much harder for us to raise donation funding. Think about this Substack, for that matter. Did my writing help to balance and reassure you in this nightmarish struggle? Did it inform you of important issues that could affect your family? Did you find community and spiritual strength here? What would your world be like without my voice, or without DailyClout’s voice and tools and advocacy? There would be a lot more darkness, and you and your family’s position and knowledge base would be weakened. I do not think that is too strong a statement. If you want these voices and institutions to keep fighting this war, mine but also others’, there is no alternative but to support them with, dare I say it, your actual money. I know that many people cannot afford $8 a month. But many of the 83,000 subscribers who are now free, could afford to upgrade to the status of paid subscriber. And the difference between 4 per cent of my readers being paid subscribers and eight per cent being paid subscribers, is the difference between a precarious and easily extinguished position on the battlefield, versus a more secure one that can continue winning victory after victory for you. And I will tell you, speaking both as a writer and on behalf of a dissident company, without your financial support it is not only materially unsustainable to fight on, but emotionally unsustainable, as the battles grow more serious and more costly. Without your help, over time, the strain of trying to figure out, during many months, how to pay our lawyers, as well as our API invoices and our developers and our travel to statehouses to lobby for freedom for you, will simply become too great. We need your help in spiritual and emotional as well as in material ways. You should support us not as a charity but because our our approach works. Because of our draft Five Freedoms bill, which passed in 33 states in 2021, you do not have vaccine passports in the US, and kids went back to school earlier than they might have done. Our Election Integrity bill, which you all shared, has cosponsors in Wyoming, was introduced and defeated in Maine (but a successor has been tapped to re-introduce it in the Fall), and three other states, Michigan, Alabama and North Dakota, have citizens and legislators acting to push it forward. The Pfizer Papers comes out in May. The manuscript, which Amy Kelly and I edited, is 500 pages long. We edited 96 reports from the WarRoom/DailyClout Pfizer Documents Research Team, who in turn had reviewed 450,000 pages of internal Pfizer documents. They revealed the greatest crime against humanity in history in exhaustive detail, affecting people and governments worldwide. Their work is cited or used without citation by dozens of other freedom advocates, and legislators. And booster uptake is now down to 4%; Pfizer’s profits ground to pre-2016 levels. We saved, together, with your help, what may turn out to be millions of lives and countless unborn babies. But to continue, I need your help; seriously; now just now but into the future. If you can afford, it, and if the above is meaningful to you at all, do please upgrade your subscription from free to paid. The war is here, and you need warriors fighting for you, who are not barefoot in the snow, but who have warm clothing, and weapons, and ammunition. https://naomiwolf.substack.com/p/what-a-war-requires
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  • Inside the anti-Syria lobby’s Capitol Hill push for more starvation sanctions
    Hekmat AboukhaterMarch 20, 2024

    A week from the 13th anniversary of the US-backed Syrian dirty war, the American Coalition for Syria held its annual day of advocacy in Washington DC. I went undercover into meetings with Senate policy advisors and witnessed the lobby’s cynical campaign to starve Syria into submission.

    On the morning of March 7, as the US Capitol teemed with lobbyists securing earmarks ahead of appropriations week and activists decrying the Gaza genocide, one special interest group on the Hill stood out. In the corridors of the Rayburn building, a group of roughly 50 people prepared for a busy day of advocating for sanctions to be levied against their homeland.

    They were the Anti-Syria lobby — and had I infiltrated their influence campaign.

    Throughout the day, I watched as this group pushed US officials to accept their policy of starvation sanctions while cynically ignoring famished Palestinians in Gaza.

    Among the lobbyists was Raed Saleh, the head of the Syrian White Helmets, who were to propagandize for regime change from behind humanitarian cover.

    I attended a total of seven meetings with policy teams representing Senators Sherrod Brown, Maggie Hassan, Ben Cardin, Mark Kelly, Chris Van Hollen, John Fetterman, and Rick Scott. Throughout these sessions, I witnessed the anti-Syria Lobby attempt to bully and manipulate US officials into accepting their policy of starvation while cynically throwing starving Palestinians in Gaza under the bus.

    At one moment, Raed Saleh, head of the Syrian White Helmets, which was founded by British intelligence, and funded by NATO states, painted Israeli air strikes against Syria in a positive light.

    During a separate meeting, Wa’el Alzayat of the pro-Zionist Muslim outreach Emgage even demanded Senator Chris Van Hollen’s office support the approval of aid for Al Qaeda-linked militias in Syria.

    “Stop freaking out about the stuff going to terrorists,” he insisted, adding that “the Brits are doing it, the Turks are doing it, [and] the Qataris are doing it.”

    Purporting to be a voice for all Syrians, the anti-Syria lobby is spearheaded by the American Coalition for Syria (ACS), an umbrella organization representing opposition groups such as the Syrian American Council (SAC), the Syrian Forum, and a handful of others located in the US and Turkey.

    Emgage, meanwhile, has been credited with getting the diaspora vote out for then-candidate Joe Biden in November 2020. The group has since fallen under criticism for acting as a de facto extension of the Biden White House and Democratic Party within the Muslim community. Emgage board member Farooq Mitha formally went to work for the Biden Pentagon in March 2021. On March 7, Alzayat aimed to weaponize Emgage’s influence against Democratic Senators who seemed uncomfortable with an escalating sanctions policy.

    “I need a good story for my voters,” he explained to Senator Van Hollen’s team.

    Throughout their sanctions campaign on the Hill, Alzayat and his cohorts operated like a miniature version of their Israel lobby allies, supplying roughly 50 volunteers with folders outlining talking points and the biographies of congressional representatives. The bios included a comprehensive list of the Senator or Representative’s recorded stance on Syria, such as their votes on the extension of the AUMF, the US military withdrawal from Syria, and previous sanctions packages targeting the country.



    The handouts also laid out the lobby’s key legislative requests, which largely focused on securing development aid for militia-controlled territory in Syria — including that held by Al Qaeda’s local ally in the country — and ensuring passage of the ‘Assad Regime Anti Normalization Bill,’ which seeks to extend and expand sanctions targeting Damascus.

    The Anti-Syria Lobby’s resemblance to their Israeli counterparts was no mistake. As Republican Florida Sen. Rick Scott’s chief of staff reassured us, “the Israelis want you guys in charge.”


    Syrian Civil War map|Syrian Civil War map (November 24, 2023) via Wikimedia Commons. Edited by author
    More Starvation Sanctions

    Ever since the US included Syria on its inaugural State Sponsor of Terrorism (SST) list over Damascus’ support for the Palestinian resistance in 1979, Washington has gradually ratcheted up its financial war on the Syrian people. When decades of covert hybrid war erupted into an all-out proxy battle for the country’s territory—and survival—in 2011, the Anti-Syria Lobby officially began to take shape in Washington.


    Syria is the unrivaled champion of the SST having never been delisted since the list’s inception in 1979.
    In 2019, as Syria’s government emerged victorious from a multi-year battle with foreign-backed militias, Washington decided that while Damascus may have won the war, it would not win the peace. That January, New York Rep. Eliot Engel, a recipient of $1.8 million in AIPAC donations, introduced a sanctions package known as the Caesar Syria Civilian Protection Act. Trump signed the bill as part of the National Defence Authorization Act (NDAA) of 2020.


    The US has a 45-year long tradition of sanctioning and isolating Syria economically in response to the country’s support of Palestinian resistance
    The bill was unprecedented in both the way that it sanctioned broad sectors of the Syrian economy rather than only specific individuals, and in its deployment of so-called “secondary sanctions.” Secondary sanctions are imposed on parties that do business with a sanctioned entity even if those exchanges occur outside of the sanctioning entity’s jurisdiction.

    Syria’s economy has been in free fall ever since the Caesar sanctions came into effect. Today, over 12 million Syrians representing more than half of the total population face food insecurity — a 51% increase from 2019. Meanwhile, 90 percent of the population lives under the poverty line. In 2019, the US dollar exchanged for 500 Syrian Pounds. Today, that number is more like 14,100— figures that represent a 2,720 percent devaluation.


    The Syrian currency has devalued by 35,150% since the initial exchange rate of 40 SYP to 1 USD early 2011
    Though H.R. 3202 appears to be focused on addressing UN aid divergence, and sanctioning previously unsanctioned entities like Asma Al Assad’s Syria Trust for Development and the Syrian Red Crescent, the real agenda of the bill is found deep within its 22-page text.

    With the Caesar Sanctions set to expire by the end of 2024, H.R. 3202 seeks to quietly extend the aggressive financial measures until 2032.


    The new bill’s main aim, which received very little attention, is the extension of the Caesar Act for 8 more years.
    Having passed the House with overwhelming enthusiasm, H.R. 3202’s sister bill in the Senate can only pass with Democratic support. It was introduced by Israeli lobby-funded Republican Idaho Sen. James Risch last September and has since been co-sponsored by arch-neoconservative Florida Sen. Marco Rubio.

    Because S. 2935 can only pass with Democratic sponsorship, the Anti-Syria Lobby chose Sen. Ben Cardin, the Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and sponsor of the anti-Russia Magnitsky Act, as a crucial target for influence.

    After meeting with Sherrod Brown’s office, Cardin’s Research and Legislative Assistant, Christopher Barr, hosted us in the Senator’s office. There, Raed Saleh of the White Helmets complained to Barr that USAID had slashed funding for his organization from $12 million to $3 million in recent years.

    Next, it was time to discuss the true purpose of our visit: the passage of S. 2935.

    Barr appeared uneasy from the outset and even expressed displeasure about the bill, complaining, “What passed the House was kind of a lot… the list of targets is vast.”

    “Syria has already been so heavily sanctioned,” he added.

    In response, Ghanem revealed a critical piece of information about the forces driving the dirty war on Syria, explaining that the impetus to expand and extend Caesar did not come from the Anti-Syria Lobby itself, but someone on Capitol Hill. Ghanem explained that the Hill source actually contacted the American Coalition for Syria to alert them to the fact that Caesar was set to expire, lamenting the fact that its sunset would amount to a loss of “US leverage over the Syrian regime.”

    This line echoed the disturbing language of officials representing both the Biden and Trump administration alike. In 2019, neoconservative operative Dana Stroul declared that thanks to Caesar, Washington “holds a card on preventing reconstruction aid and technical expertise from going back,” to Syria. She lauded the fact that the U.S. could weaponize that “leverage” to keep Syria in “rubble.” Two years later, she would take up post as Deputy Secretary of Defense for the Middle East under Biden.


    Similarly, during an event at the neoconservative think tank, WINEP, the following year, the Special Envoy for Syria under Trump, Joel Rayburn, boasted that Caesar “lowers the bar” for evidence-based sanctions and allows for the broad targeting of any and all reconstruction projects in Syria.


    “We don’t have to prove, for example, that a company that’s going in to do a reconstruction project in the Damascus region is dealing directly with the Assad regime,” Rayburn explained.

    “We don’t have to have the evidence to prove that link,” he continued. “We just have to have the evidence that proves that a company or an individual is investing in […] the construction sector, the engineering sector, most of the aviation sector, the finance sector, energy sector, and so on.”

    These public confessions did not stop the Anti-Syria Lobby from lying to the faces of congressional staffers throughout their March 7 campaign. During a meeting with Sen. Mark Kelly’s office, Ghanem falsely stated that the Caesar Sanctions were “targeted,” “not sectoral,” and “not [an] embargo, nothing punishing to civilians.”

    Yet Alena Douhan, the UN Special Rapporteur on Sanctions who visited Syria to document the effects of Washington’s unilateral sanctions regime on Syria, disagrees. In her 19-page report she clearly states that the sanctions are both illegal and inhumane in the way they affect the average Syrian.

    Stabilization for me but not for thee

    The second legislative ask came in the form of a well rehearsed speech by Ghanem, Zayat, and others, outlining what US tax dollars do and don’t fund in Syria. US aid packages are typically divided into two categories: “humanitarian funding” earmarked for goods such as food, water, and basic medical supplies or “stabilization” funding designed to secure a country as it transitions out of a period of turmoil. Unlike humanitarian assistance, stabilization funding may be used to support major investment and infrastructure projects such as roads, schools, healthcare facilities, and government services.

    The US is the primary funder of humanitarian aid in both North East (NE) and NW Syria. However, while the US spends abundantly on stabilization needs in NE Syria, it spends $0 on the NW. That is because while Washington has long dreamed of establishing a secessionist Kurdish state in Syria’s Northeast, it neglected to send stabilization funds to the Northwest in order to avoid providing direct support to HTS, the Al Qaeda offshoot that governs the territory. The Anti-Syria Lobby was in Washington to change that.

    Leading the push for US funds to Al Qaeda-affiliated elements in Northwest Syria was Wa’el Alzayat, a Syrian expat who proudly served in Iraq’s Green Zone under George Bush’s State Department and more recently published a shocking Washington Post oped begging US officials not to “lift sanctions to help Syria earthquake victims.” In the office of Sen. Chris Van Hollen, Alzayat voiced his frustration with US hesitation in the Northwest.

    “Stop freaking out about the stuff going to terrorists,” he demanded, adding that “the Brits are doing it, the Turks are doing it, the Qataris are doing it.”




    We’re missing out on a golden opportunity here to stabilize the region and leverage it for a political settlement,” he pleaded. In other words, Alzayat was openly lobbying US officials to strengthen Al Qaeda’s position in Syria in order to leverage the terrorist group against the country’s government.

    Alzayat then weaponized his six-figure salary as head of Emgage to bully Van Hollen’s office into bowing before the anti-Syria Lobby, falsely claiming that his AIPAC-linked organization was “behind” the “Uncommitted” vote campaigns that damaged Biden’s primary performance in Michigan and Minnesota.




    Towards the end of the meeting, the regime change lobbyist cynically invoked Israel’s slaughter of 30,000 Palestinians in Gaza to make the case for Al Qaeda in Syria one last time.

    He argued that although “his community” is up in arms about the Biden administration’s funding and arming of the Gaza genocide, they would gladly flock back to the Democratic Party if the US funded roads and schools in Al Qaeda-controlled Idlib.

    “I need a good story for my voters,” Alzayat explained, noting the Muslim community’s disapproval of the Biden Administration’s policy in Gaza and Yemen.

    “You’re upset about all these disappointments,” he continued, play-acting a scenario in which he convinced a Muslim constituent to vote for Biden, again. “Guess what? They’re pumping 50 million into the school sector in the North [of Syria]!”




    Overtures Towards Israel

    The Israel-Palestine crisis loomed large throughout the ACS lobbying trip. Sen. Sherrod Brown’s secretary happened to be a hijabi Muslim woman sporting a pendant outlining the map of Palestine around her neck. As she greeted us, Farouk Belal, the head of the Syrian American Council, grumbled to Ghanem and me: “I hope she’s not with the resistance.”

    When I asked him to clarify what he meant as we exited the office, he explained that people aligned with the Palestinian cause in Washington “don’t like us.”

    Meanwhile, in Sen. Cardin’s office, Raed Salah of the White Helmets painted Israeli strikes on Syria which have crippled Syrian infrastructure, regularly damaged the country’s International civilian airports, and killed hundreds of Syrian Soldiers and civilians alike in a positive light:

    “The situation in Syria is very complicated. Every day we hear of Israeli strikes on the dens, or the bases of the IRGC and its militias. Even we as Syrians did not know the extent to which the Iranians were entrenched in the country…”




    For Saleh, the Israeli strikes do nothing but highlight the presence of the Syrian government-invited Iranian military presence in Syria.

    Later that day, Ghanem attempted to capitalize on Sen. Fetterman’s fanatical pro-Israel antics by describing recent developments in Syria to a 20-something staffer. Referring to the Syrian government’s successful campaign to retake southern territory, he explained that the South is “where they lob missiles on Israel, by the way.” The aide dutifully transcribed this seemingly random piece of information in her notepad. Towards the end of the meeting, Fetterman was discussed as a potential Democratic sponsor of S. 2935 in the Senate.

    In Senator Rick Scott’s office, a Cuban American Government Relations Associate for ACS, Alberto Hernandez, accidentally said the quiet part out loud. When Senator Scott’s ultra-Zionist National Security Advisor, Paul Bonicelli, asked if our group had connected with our “counterparts” in the Israeli lobby so that they could “vet” our proposals — revealing that Scott has apparently outsourced his brain to Zionists — Hernandez remarked: “Formally? No. Informally.”

    He then turned to the rest of the ACS team in the meeting room and said: “You didn’t hear me say that.”

    That admission prompted Bonicelli to suggest that ACS directly coordinate with groups such as the Aramaic Church in Israel, which has supported regime change efforts in Damascus despite overwhelming Christian support of the government within Syria itself.

    As the meeting wound to a close, Bonicelli informed us that he agreed with ACS on the necessity to oppose Iran and Russia.

    “If Obama had done the right thing in 2012, we wouldn’t be here,” he lamented, adding: “the Israelis want you guys in charge.”


    At one point during the meeting in Rick Scott’s Office, Alberto Hernandez, and Sarah Salas, a Cuban American legislative aide, expressed full agreement with US use of unilateral sanctions as means to “push” governments that “we don’t like.”
    Starving Syrians Without A Mandate

    Though several ACS volunteers shared painful personal encounters with the Syrian government throughout the day, many were simply too far removed from Syria to truly represent the voice of Syrian people, especially the 12 million plus civilians currently living in Syrian government-controlled territory.

    One 24-year-old woman who did not speak Arabic and has not been to Syria since 2003 described the Syrian Army’s 2016 liberation of Aleppo from Al Qaeda-linked militants as “the fall of Aleppo.”

    Other Syrians like myself experienced the terror of the West’s proxy war in Syria firsthand. In 2012, my aunt and cousins watched in horror as the Turkish-backed Liwa’ Al Tawhid, an umbrella group of takfiri jihadist militias, arrived on their street in the Seryan El Jdideh neighborhood of Aleppo. The militants proceeded to execute a local pick-up truck driver and steal his vehicle, leaving his bleeding corpse on the street. Shahba, where my family lived up until 2015, was located just a stone’s throw away from these sectarian death squads during our final months there.

    The Syrian dirty war was bloody and gruesome, yet the picture that ACS paints is entirely one-sided. Unfortunately, while organizations like ACS have flocked to the Beltway swamp throughout the last 13 years, there are no Syrians present in Washington DC to counter them. While these groups claim to speak on behalf of the Syrian people, those of us who have lived and still live in areas controlled by Syrian government — regardless of our political affiliations—are rendered voiceless in the very center of power where our perspective should matter most. Even Syria’s embassy has been shuttered since 2014, while Syrian diplomats at the UN in New York are heavily monitored and restricted from traveling beyond the NYC metro area.

    As I witnessed on Capitol Hill, there are few obstacles to the anti-Syria lobby’s ruthless push to prevent the majority of Syrians from emerging from the ruins of war.

    https://thegrayzone.com/2024/03/20/anti-syria-lobbys-capitol-hill-sanctions/
    Inside the anti-Syria lobby’s Capitol Hill push for more starvation sanctions Hekmat AboukhaterMarch 20, 2024 A week from the 13th anniversary of the US-backed Syrian dirty war, the American Coalition for Syria held its annual day of advocacy in Washington DC. I went undercover into meetings with Senate policy advisors and witnessed the lobby’s cynical campaign to starve Syria into submission. On the morning of March 7, as the US Capitol teemed with lobbyists securing earmarks ahead of appropriations week and activists decrying the Gaza genocide, one special interest group on the Hill stood out. In the corridors of the Rayburn building, a group of roughly 50 people prepared for a busy day of advocating for sanctions to be levied against their homeland. They were the Anti-Syria lobby — and had I infiltrated their influence campaign. Throughout the day, I watched as this group pushed US officials to accept their policy of starvation sanctions while cynically ignoring famished Palestinians in Gaza. Among the lobbyists was Raed Saleh, the head of the Syrian White Helmets, who were to propagandize for regime change from behind humanitarian cover. I attended a total of seven meetings with policy teams representing Senators Sherrod Brown, Maggie Hassan, Ben Cardin, Mark Kelly, Chris Van Hollen, John Fetterman, and Rick Scott. Throughout these sessions, I witnessed the anti-Syria Lobby attempt to bully and manipulate US officials into accepting their policy of starvation while cynically throwing starving Palestinians in Gaza under the bus. At one moment, Raed Saleh, head of the Syrian White Helmets, which was founded by British intelligence, and funded by NATO states, painted Israeli air strikes against Syria in a positive light. During a separate meeting, Wa’el Alzayat of the pro-Zionist Muslim outreach Emgage even demanded Senator Chris Van Hollen’s office support the approval of aid for Al Qaeda-linked militias in Syria. “Stop freaking out about the stuff going to terrorists,” he insisted, adding that “the Brits are doing it, the Turks are doing it, [and] the Qataris are doing it.” Purporting to be a voice for all Syrians, the anti-Syria lobby is spearheaded by the American Coalition for Syria (ACS), an umbrella organization representing opposition groups such as the Syrian American Council (SAC), the Syrian Forum, and a handful of others located in the US and Turkey. Emgage, meanwhile, has been credited with getting the diaspora vote out for then-candidate Joe Biden in November 2020. The group has since fallen under criticism for acting as a de facto extension of the Biden White House and Democratic Party within the Muslim community. Emgage board member Farooq Mitha formally went to work for the Biden Pentagon in March 2021. On March 7, Alzayat aimed to weaponize Emgage’s influence against Democratic Senators who seemed uncomfortable with an escalating sanctions policy. “I need a good story for my voters,” he explained to Senator Van Hollen’s team. Throughout their sanctions campaign on the Hill, Alzayat and his cohorts operated like a miniature version of their Israel lobby allies, supplying roughly 50 volunteers with folders outlining talking points and the biographies of congressional representatives. The bios included a comprehensive list of the Senator or Representative’s recorded stance on Syria, such as their votes on the extension of the AUMF, the US military withdrawal from Syria, and previous sanctions packages targeting the country. The handouts also laid out the lobby’s key legislative requests, which largely focused on securing development aid for militia-controlled territory in Syria — including that held by Al Qaeda’s local ally in the country — and ensuring passage of the ‘Assad Regime Anti Normalization Bill,’ which seeks to extend and expand sanctions targeting Damascus. The Anti-Syria Lobby’s resemblance to their Israeli counterparts was no mistake. As Republican Florida Sen. Rick Scott’s chief of staff reassured us, “the Israelis want you guys in charge.” Syrian Civil War map|Syrian Civil War map (November 24, 2023) via Wikimedia Commons. Edited by author More Starvation Sanctions Ever since the US included Syria on its inaugural State Sponsor of Terrorism (SST) list over Damascus’ support for the Palestinian resistance in 1979, Washington has gradually ratcheted up its financial war on the Syrian people. When decades of covert hybrid war erupted into an all-out proxy battle for the country’s territory—and survival—in 2011, the Anti-Syria Lobby officially began to take shape in Washington. Syria is the unrivaled champion of the SST having never been delisted since the list’s inception in 1979. In 2019, as Syria’s government emerged victorious from a multi-year battle with foreign-backed militias, Washington decided that while Damascus may have won the war, it would not win the peace. That January, New York Rep. Eliot Engel, a recipient of $1.8 million in AIPAC donations, introduced a sanctions package known as the Caesar Syria Civilian Protection Act. Trump signed the bill as part of the National Defence Authorization Act (NDAA) of 2020. The US has a 45-year long tradition of sanctioning and isolating Syria economically in response to the country’s support of Palestinian resistance The bill was unprecedented in both the way that it sanctioned broad sectors of the Syrian economy rather than only specific individuals, and in its deployment of so-called “secondary sanctions.” Secondary sanctions are imposed on parties that do business with a sanctioned entity even if those exchanges occur outside of the sanctioning entity’s jurisdiction. Syria’s economy has been in free fall ever since the Caesar sanctions came into effect. Today, over 12 million Syrians representing more than half of the total population face food insecurity — a 51% increase from 2019. Meanwhile, 90 percent of the population lives under the poverty line. In 2019, the US dollar exchanged for 500 Syrian Pounds. Today, that number is more like 14,100— figures that represent a 2,720 percent devaluation. The Syrian currency has devalued by 35,150% since the initial exchange rate of 40 SYP to 1 USD early 2011 Though H.R. 3202 appears to be focused on addressing UN aid divergence, and sanctioning previously unsanctioned entities like Asma Al Assad’s Syria Trust for Development and the Syrian Red Crescent, the real agenda of the bill is found deep within its 22-page text. With the Caesar Sanctions set to expire by the end of 2024, H.R. 3202 seeks to quietly extend the aggressive financial measures until 2032. The new bill’s main aim, which received very little attention, is the extension of the Caesar Act for 8 more years. Having passed the House with overwhelming enthusiasm, H.R. 3202’s sister bill in the Senate can only pass with Democratic support. It was introduced by Israeli lobby-funded Republican Idaho Sen. James Risch last September and has since been co-sponsored by arch-neoconservative Florida Sen. Marco Rubio. Because S. 2935 can only pass with Democratic sponsorship, the Anti-Syria Lobby chose Sen. Ben Cardin, the Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and sponsor of the anti-Russia Magnitsky Act, as a crucial target for influence. After meeting with Sherrod Brown’s office, Cardin’s Research and Legislative Assistant, Christopher Barr, hosted us in the Senator’s office. There, Raed Saleh of the White Helmets complained to Barr that USAID had slashed funding for his organization from $12 million to $3 million in recent years. Next, it was time to discuss the true purpose of our visit: the passage of S. 2935. Barr appeared uneasy from the outset and even expressed displeasure about the bill, complaining, “What passed the House was kind of a lot… the list of targets is vast.” “Syria has already been so heavily sanctioned,” he added. In response, Ghanem revealed a critical piece of information about the forces driving the dirty war on Syria, explaining that the impetus to expand and extend Caesar did not come from the Anti-Syria Lobby itself, but someone on Capitol Hill. Ghanem explained that the Hill source actually contacted the American Coalition for Syria to alert them to the fact that Caesar was set to expire, lamenting the fact that its sunset would amount to a loss of “US leverage over the Syrian regime.” This line echoed the disturbing language of officials representing both the Biden and Trump administration alike. In 2019, neoconservative operative Dana Stroul declared that thanks to Caesar, Washington “holds a card on preventing reconstruction aid and technical expertise from going back,” to Syria. She lauded the fact that the U.S. could weaponize that “leverage” to keep Syria in “rubble.” Two years later, she would take up post as Deputy Secretary of Defense for the Middle East under Biden. Similarly, during an event at the neoconservative think tank, WINEP, the following year, the Special Envoy for Syria under Trump, Joel Rayburn, boasted that Caesar “lowers the bar” for evidence-based sanctions and allows for the broad targeting of any and all reconstruction projects in Syria. “We don’t have to prove, for example, that a company that’s going in to do a reconstruction project in the Damascus region is dealing directly with the Assad regime,” Rayburn explained. “We don’t have to have the evidence to prove that link,” he continued. “We just have to have the evidence that proves that a company or an individual is investing in […] the construction sector, the engineering sector, most of the aviation sector, the finance sector, energy sector, and so on.” These public confessions did not stop the Anti-Syria Lobby from lying to the faces of congressional staffers throughout their March 7 campaign. During a meeting with Sen. Mark Kelly’s office, Ghanem falsely stated that the Caesar Sanctions were “targeted,” “not sectoral,” and “not [an] embargo, nothing punishing to civilians.” Yet Alena Douhan, the UN Special Rapporteur on Sanctions who visited Syria to document the effects of Washington’s unilateral sanctions regime on Syria, disagrees. In her 19-page report she clearly states that the sanctions are both illegal and inhumane in the way they affect the average Syrian. Stabilization for me but not for thee The second legislative ask came in the form of a well rehearsed speech by Ghanem, Zayat, and others, outlining what US tax dollars do and don’t fund in Syria. US aid packages are typically divided into two categories: “humanitarian funding” earmarked for goods such as food, water, and basic medical supplies or “stabilization” funding designed to secure a country as it transitions out of a period of turmoil. Unlike humanitarian assistance, stabilization funding may be used to support major investment and infrastructure projects such as roads, schools, healthcare facilities, and government services. The US is the primary funder of humanitarian aid in both North East (NE) and NW Syria. However, while the US spends abundantly on stabilization needs in NE Syria, it spends $0 on the NW. That is because while Washington has long dreamed of establishing a secessionist Kurdish state in Syria’s Northeast, it neglected to send stabilization funds to the Northwest in order to avoid providing direct support to HTS, the Al Qaeda offshoot that governs the territory. The Anti-Syria Lobby was in Washington to change that. Leading the push for US funds to Al Qaeda-affiliated elements in Northwest Syria was Wa’el Alzayat, a Syrian expat who proudly served in Iraq’s Green Zone under George Bush’s State Department and more recently published a shocking Washington Post oped begging US officials not to “lift sanctions to help Syria earthquake victims.” In the office of Sen. Chris Van Hollen, Alzayat voiced his frustration with US hesitation in the Northwest. “Stop freaking out about the stuff going to terrorists,” he demanded, adding that “the Brits are doing it, the Turks are doing it, the Qataris are doing it.” We’re missing out on a golden opportunity here to stabilize the region and leverage it for a political settlement,” he pleaded. In other words, Alzayat was openly lobbying US officials to strengthen Al Qaeda’s position in Syria in order to leverage the terrorist group against the country’s government. Alzayat then weaponized his six-figure salary as head of Emgage to bully Van Hollen’s office into bowing before the anti-Syria Lobby, falsely claiming that his AIPAC-linked organization was “behind” the “Uncommitted” vote campaigns that damaged Biden’s primary performance in Michigan and Minnesota. Towards the end of the meeting, the regime change lobbyist cynically invoked Israel’s slaughter of 30,000 Palestinians in Gaza to make the case for Al Qaeda in Syria one last time. He argued that although “his community” is up in arms about the Biden administration’s funding and arming of the Gaza genocide, they would gladly flock back to the Democratic Party if the US funded roads and schools in Al Qaeda-controlled Idlib. “I need a good story for my voters,” Alzayat explained, noting the Muslim community’s disapproval of the Biden Administration’s policy in Gaza and Yemen. “You’re upset about all these disappointments,” he continued, play-acting a scenario in which he convinced a Muslim constituent to vote for Biden, again. “Guess what? They’re pumping 50 million into the school sector in the North [of Syria]!” Overtures Towards Israel The Israel-Palestine crisis loomed large throughout the ACS lobbying trip. Sen. Sherrod Brown’s secretary happened to be a hijabi Muslim woman sporting a pendant outlining the map of Palestine around her neck. As she greeted us, Farouk Belal, the head of the Syrian American Council, grumbled to Ghanem and me: “I hope she’s not with the resistance.” When I asked him to clarify what he meant as we exited the office, he explained that people aligned with the Palestinian cause in Washington “don’t like us.” Meanwhile, in Sen. Cardin’s office, Raed Salah of the White Helmets painted Israeli strikes on Syria which have crippled Syrian infrastructure, regularly damaged the country’s International civilian airports, and killed hundreds of Syrian Soldiers and civilians alike in a positive light: “The situation in Syria is very complicated. Every day we hear of Israeli strikes on the dens, or the bases of the IRGC and its militias. Even we as Syrians did not know the extent to which the Iranians were entrenched in the country…” For Saleh, the Israeli strikes do nothing but highlight the presence of the Syrian government-invited Iranian military presence in Syria. Later that day, Ghanem attempted to capitalize on Sen. Fetterman’s fanatical pro-Israel antics by describing recent developments in Syria to a 20-something staffer. Referring to the Syrian government’s successful campaign to retake southern territory, he explained that the South is “where they lob missiles on Israel, by the way.” The aide dutifully transcribed this seemingly random piece of information in her notepad. Towards the end of the meeting, Fetterman was discussed as a potential Democratic sponsor of S. 2935 in the Senate. In Senator Rick Scott’s office, a Cuban American Government Relations Associate for ACS, Alberto Hernandez, accidentally said the quiet part out loud. When Senator Scott’s ultra-Zionist National Security Advisor, Paul Bonicelli, asked if our group had connected with our “counterparts” in the Israeli lobby so that they could “vet” our proposals — revealing that Scott has apparently outsourced his brain to Zionists — Hernandez remarked: “Formally? No. Informally.” He then turned to the rest of the ACS team in the meeting room and said: “You didn’t hear me say that.” That admission prompted Bonicelli to suggest that ACS directly coordinate with groups such as the Aramaic Church in Israel, which has supported regime change efforts in Damascus despite overwhelming Christian support of the government within Syria itself. As the meeting wound to a close, Bonicelli informed us that he agreed with ACS on the necessity to oppose Iran and Russia. “If Obama had done the right thing in 2012, we wouldn’t be here,” he lamented, adding: “the Israelis want you guys in charge.” At one point during the meeting in Rick Scott’s Office, Alberto Hernandez, and Sarah Salas, a Cuban American legislative aide, expressed full agreement with US use of unilateral sanctions as means to “push” governments that “we don’t like.” Starving Syrians Without A Mandate Though several ACS volunteers shared painful personal encounters with the Syrian government throughout the day, many were simply too far removed from Syria to truly represent the voice of Syrian people, especially the 12 million plus civilians currently living in Syrian government-controlled territory. One 24-year-old woman who did not speak Arabic and has not been to Syria since 2003 described the Syrian Army’s 2016 liberation of Aleppo from Al Qaeda-linked militants as “the fall of Aleppo.” Other Syrians like myself experienced the terror of the West’s proxy war in Syria firsthand. In 2012, my aunt and cousins watched in horror as the Turkish-backed Liwa’ Al Tawhid, an umbrella group of takfiri jihadist militias, arrived on their street in the Seryan El Jdideh neighborhood of Aleppo. The militants proceeded to execute a local pick-up truck driver and steal his vehicle, leaving his bleeding corpse on the street. Shahba, where my family lived up until 2015, was located just a stone’s throw away from these sectarian death squads during our final months there. The Syrian dirty war was bloody and gruesome, yet the picture that ACS paints is entirely one-sided. Unfortunately, while organizations like ACS have flocked to the Beltway swamp throughout the last 13 years, there are no Syrians present in Washington DC to counter them. While these groups claim to speak on behalf of the Syrian people, those of us who have lived and still live in areas controlled by Syrian government — regardless of our political affiliations—are rendered voiceless in the very center of power where our perspective should matter most. Even Syria’s embassy has been shuttered since 2014, while Syrian diplomats at the UN in New York are heavily monitored and restricted from traveling beyond the NYC metro area. As I witnessed on Capitol Hill, there are few obstacles to the anti-Syria lobby’s ruthless push to prevent the majority of Syrians from emerging from the ruins of war. https://thegrayzone.com/2024/03/20/anti-syria-lobbys-capitol-hill-sanctions/
    THEGRAYZONE.COM
    Inside the anti-Syria lobby's Capitol Hill push for more starvation sanctions - The Grayzone
    A week from the 13th anniversary of the US-backed Syrian dirty war, the American Coalition for Syria held its annual day of advocacy in Washington DC. I went undercover into meetings with Senate policy advisors and witnessed the lobby’s cynical campaign to starve Syria into submission. On the morning of March 7, as the US Capitol teemed with lobbyists securing earmarks ahead of appropriations week and activists decrying the Gaza genocide, one special interest group on the Hill stood out. […]
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  • Academics raise concerns about shortcomings of UK Covid-19 Inquiry
    Maryanne Demasi, PhD

    Over 50 prominent UK academics have signed an open letter to Baroness Heather Hallett, chair of the UK Covid-19 Inquiry, calling for urgent action to address the shortcomings of the probe so far. The signatories of the letter say the Hallett Inquiry suffers from bias, false assumptions, and a lack of impartiality.

    “The Covid Inquiry is not living up to its mission to evaluate the mistakes made during the pandemic, whether Covid measures were appropriate, and to prepare the country for the next pandemic,” they write.

    Kevin Bardosh, lead signatory and Director of Collateral Global has been following the Inquiry closely. He’s concerned it has focused too much on “who said what and when,” rather than homing in on key scientific questions about the evidence (or lack thereof) underpinning policy decisions.


    Prof Kevin Bardosh, Director of Collateral Global. Photo credit: Shutterstock
    “The Inquiry was pre-designed on the assumption that the government ‘didn’t do enough’ to protect people during the pandemic,” says Bardosh. “But the thing about the pandemic is that more measures, didn’t mean more lives saved. It’s a paradoxical aspect of health policy that more doesn't necessarily mean better.

    Bardosh, who is affiliated with University of Edinburgh Medical School, says because the Inquiry’s starting position is that non-pharmaceutical interventions (e.g. masks) and lockdowns were necessary and effective, it’s not actually interrogating the trade-offs of these policies.

    “If you go back to pre-Covid, policies like lockdowns, extended school closures, and contact tracing for a respiratory virus, were not the ‘scientific consensus’ for how to respond rationally to a pandemic,” he says. “In fact, the reverse was true. The goal was to minimise the disruption to society because it would have all these short and long-term unintended consequences.”

    In December 2023, when Prime Minister Rishi Sunak was questioned at the Inquiry, he admitted the UK government had failed to discuss the costs and benefits of pandemic policies.


    UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunk questioned at UK Covid Inquiry
    Sunak pointed to a peer-reviewed report by Imperial College London and the University of Manchester that applied a Quality-Adjusted Life Year analysis to the first lockdown in the UK and found “for every permutation of lives saved and GDP lost, the costs of lockdown exceed the benefits.” [emphasis added]

    Bardosh has also called out the Inquiry for its double standards in scrutinising experts.

    Take for example, Neil Ferguson, professor at Imperial College and former SAGE member. He was the architect behind lockdowns after his March 2020 models warned that 500,000 Brits would die unless tougher restrictions were put in place to curb spread of the virus.

    Bardosh says, “The Inquiry hasn’t really questioned Ferguson’s mathematical model in any substantial way. But if you compare that to the questioning of Professor Carl Heneghan, who's based out of Oxford, it was very confrontational, and they used provocative language to suggest he didn't have expertise in this area.”

    Heneghan, the director of Oxford’s Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine, was among 32 senior UK academics who urged then-Prime Minister, Boris Johnson to think twice about plunging Britain into a second lockdown in the autumn of 2020.

    It was revealed during evidence to the Inquiry, that the UK’s Chief Scientific Adviser, Dame Angela McLean, called Heneghan a “fuckwit” on a WhatsApp chat during a September 2020 Government meeting for his dissenting views on lockdowns.


    Prof Carl Heneghan, director of Centre of Evidence-Based Medicine, Oxford
    Later, Heneghan penned a scathing article in The Spectator, calling the Inquiry a ‘farce – a spectacle of hysteria, name-calling and trivialities.”

    “Lockdown was the most disruptive policy in British peacetime history, with huge ramifications for our health, children’s education and the economy,” wrote Heneghan.

    “This is an opportunity for the inquiry to gather evidence and ask whether lockdown and other interventions actually worked….Instead we have a KC [King's Counsel] who seems uninterested in substance and obsessed with reading out rude words he has found in other people’s private messages.”

    Share

    Bardosh and the other signatories have also raised concerns about the structure of the scientific advisory groups in the Inquiry, which have omitted key experts in child development, schooling impacts, social and economic policy.

    “The Inquiry must invite a much broader range of scientific experts with more critical viewpoints. It must also review the evidence on diverse topics so that it can be fully informed of relevant science and the economic and social cost of Covid policies to British society,” write the signatories.

    So far, Bardosh is unimpressed with the ‘political theatre’ of the Inquiry, but hopes Baroness Hallett will urgently address its shortcomings to avoid compromising the credibility of future public inquiries.

    “Not having an inquiry that really asks those questions is very damaging to the idea of accountability. We need to hold to account the policy decisions that were made because if we don’t, the next time there's a public health emergency, these measures will come back into place whether or not they actually work,” says Bardosh.

    The Hallett Inquiry is slated to run until 2026 and is reported to be one of the largest public inquiries in UK history. The cost of the UK government’s covid measures are estimated to be between £310bn and £410bn.


    *Correction: an earlier version of this article said the cost of the Hallett Inquiry was estimated to be between £310bn and £410bn, but that is the estimate for the government’s covid measures.

    Give a gift subscription


    https://blog.maryannedemasi.com/p/academics-raise-concerns-about-shortcomings
    Academics raise concerns about shortcomings of UK Covid-19 Inquiry Maryanne Demasi, PhD Over 50 prominent UK academics have signed an open letter to Baroness Heather Hallett, chair of the UK Covid-19 Inquiry, calling for urgent action to address the shortcomings of the probe so far. The signatories of the letter say the Hallett Inquiry suffers from bias, false assumptions, and a lack of impartiality. “The Covid Inquiry is not living up to its mission to evaluate the mistakes made during the pandemic, whether Covid measures were appropriate, and to prepare the country for the next pandemic,” they write. Kevin Bardosh, lead signatory and Director of Collateral Global has been following the Inquiry closely. He’s concerned it has focused too much on “who said what and when,” rather than homing in on key scientific questions about the evidence (or lack thereof) underpinning policy decisions. Prof Kevin Bardosh, Director of Collateral Global. Photo credit: Shutterstock “The Inquiry was pre-designed on the assumption that the government ‘didn’t do enough’ to protect people during the pandemic,” says Bardosh. “But the thing about the pandemic is that more measures, didn’t mean more lives saved. It’s a paradoxical aspect of health policy that more doesn't necessarily mean better. Bardosh, who is affiliated with University of Edinburgh Medical School, says because the Inquiry’s starting position is that non-pharmaceutical interventions (e.g. masks) and lockdowns were necessary and effective, it’s not actually interrogating the trade-offs of these policies. “If you go back to pre-Covid, policies like lockdowns, extended school closures, and contact tracing for a respiratory virus, were not the ‘scientific consensus’ for how to respond rationally to a pandemic,” he says. “In fact, the reverse was true. The goal was to minimise the disruption to society because it would have all these short and long-term unintended consequences.” In December 2023, when Prime Minister Rishi Sunak was questioned at the Inquiry, he admitted the UK government had failed to discuss the costs and benefits of pandemic policies. UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunk questioned at UK Covid Inquiry Sunak pointed to a peer-reviewed report by Imperial College London and the University of Manchester that applied a Quality-Adjusted Life Year analysis to the first lockdown in the UK and found “for every permutation of lives saved and GDP lost, the costs of lockdown exceed the benefits.” [emphasis added] Bardosh has also called out the Inquiry for its double standards in scrutinising experts. Take for example, Neil Ferguson, professor at Imperial College and former SAGE member. He was the architect behind lockdowns after his March 2020 models warned that 500,000 Brits would die unless tougher restrictions were put in place to curb spread of the virus. Bardosh says, “The Inquiry hasn’t really questioned Ferguson’s mathematical model in any substantial way. But if you compare that to the questioning of Professor Carl Heneghan, who's based out of Oxford, it was very confrontational, and they used provocative language to suggest he didn't have expertise in this area.” Heneghan, the director of Oxford’s Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine, was among 32 senior UK academics who urged then-Prime Minister, Boris Johnson to think twice about plunging Britain into a second lockdown in the autumn of 2020. It was revealed during evidence to the Inquiry, that the UK’s Chief Scientific Adviser, Dame Angela McLean, called Heneghan a “fuckwit” on a WhatsApp chat during a September 2020 Government meeting for his dissenting views on lockdowns. Prof Carl Heneghan, director of Centre of Evidence-Based Medicine, Oxford Later, Heneghan penned a scathing article in The Spectator, calling the Inquiry a ‘farce – a spectacle of hysteria, name-calling and trivialities.” “Lockdown was the most disruptive policy in British peacetime history, with huge ramifications for our health, children’s education and the economy,” wrote Heneghan. “This is an opportunity for the inquiry to gather evidence and ask whether lockdown and other interventions actually worked….Instead we have a KC [King's Counsel] who seems uninterested in substance and obsessed with reading out rude words he has found in other people’s private messages.” Share Bardosh and the other signatories have also raised concerns about the structure of the scientific advisory groups in the Inquiry, which have omitted key experts in child development, schooling impacts, social and economic policy. “The Inquiry must invite a much broader range of scientific experts with more critical viewpoints. It must also review the evidence on diverse topics so that it can be fully informed of relevant science and the economic and social cost of Covid policies to British society,” write the signatories. So far, Bardosh is unimpressed with the ‘political theatre’ of the Inquiry, but hopes Baroness Hallett will urgently address its shortcomings to avoid compromising the credibility of future public inquiries. “Not having an inquiry that really asks those questions is very damaging to the idea of accountability. We need to hold to account the policy decisions that were made because if we don’t, the next time there's a public health emergency, these measures will come back into place whether or not they actually work,” says Bardosh. The Hallett Inquiry is slated to run until 2026 and is reported to be one of the largest public inquiries in UK history. The cost of the UK government’s covid measures are estimated to be between £310bn and £410bn. *Correction: an earlier version of this article said the cost of the Hallett Inquiry was estimated to be between £310bn and £410bn, but that is the estimate for the government’s covid measures. Give a gift subscription https://blog.maryannedemasi.com/p/academics-raise-concerns-about-shortcomings
    BLOG.MARYANNEDEMASI.COM
    Academics raise concerns about shortcomings of UK Covid-19 Inquiry
    Over 50 prominent UK academics have signed an open letter to Baroness Heather Hallett, chair of the UK Covid-19 Inquiry, calling for urgent action to address the shortcomings of the probe so far. The signatories of the letter say the Hallett Inquiry suffers from bias, false assumptions, and a lack of impartiality.
    1 Comments 0 Shares 6503 Views
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