Reader’s Links on February 14, 2021

Each day at just after midnight Eastern, a post like this one is created for contributors and readers of this site to upload news links and video links on the issues that concern this site. Most notably, Islam and its effects on Classical Civilization, and various forms of leftism from Soviet era communism, to postmodernism and all the flavours of galloping statism and totalitarianism such as Nazism and Fascism which are increasingly snuffing out the classical liberalism which created our near, miraculous civilization the West has been building since the time of Socrates.

This document was written around the time this site was created, for those who wish to understand what this site is about. And while our understanding of the world and events has grown since then, the basic ideas remain sound and true to the purpose.

So please post all links, thoughts and ideas that you feel will benefit the readers of this site to the comments under this post each day. And thank you all for your contributions.

This is the new Samizdat. We must use it while we can.

About Eeyore

Canadian artist and counter-jihad and freedom of speech activist as well as devout Schrödinger's catholic

107 Replies to “Reader’s Links on February 14, 2021”

  1. Billionaire-Funded Canadian Initiative Prepared the Way for ‘Public-Private Partnerships’ that Will Help Pay for Biden’s 2021 Refugee Surge (breitbart, Feb 14, 2021)
    https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2021/02/13/billionaire-funded-canadian-initiative-prepared-the-way-for-public-private-partnerships-that-will-help-pay-for-bidens-2021-refugee-surge/

    “A Canadian initiative funded by billionaires George Soros and Frank Giustra has prepared the way for President Biden’s proposed “public-private partnerships” that will play a key role in delivering on the surge in refugee admissions to the United States promised by the Biden administration in FY 2021 and FY 2022.

    The Ottawa based Global Refugee Sponsorship Initiative (GRSI), whose mission is “to assist and inspire countries around the world to open new pathways for refugee protection,” was founded in 2016 by billionaire George Soros, who pledged $500 million through his Open Society Foundations to help refugees around the world, the Government of Canada, and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). Canadian billion Frank Giustra, through The Giustra Foundation (involved previously in controversial donations to the Clinton Foundation) and retired American investment manager Ed Shapiro, through his Shapiro Foundation, subsequently joined the initiative.

    The GRSI’s web site says it accomplishes its mission “by sharing Canada’s history, experience, and leadership in private sponsorship and by supporting the creation of new programs that countries design to meet their unique needs.”

    Through our work with local organizers, we aim to:

    increase and improve global refugee resettlement by engaging private citizens, communities, and businesses in resettlement efforts;
    strengthen local host communities that come together to welcome newcomers; and
    improve the narrative about refugees and other newcomers.
    More than four years after GRSI’s founding, President Biden is giving the billionaires who funded it–and others in America– an opportunity to use the community sponsorship model to resettle refugees in the United States through “public-private sponsorships.”

    President Biden signed an executive order on February 4 whose ostensible purpose is to shore up the withered refugee resettlement bureaucracy so that it will be prepared to handle the 125,000 refugee ceiling for FY 2022 (beginning October 1, 2021) he intends to declare in his September 2021 determination letter to Congress. Tucked away in that executive order is a provision that opens the way for such private funding:

    Sec. 4. Steps to Improve the Efficacy, Integrity, Security, and Transparency of USRAP.

    (k) Within 120 days of the date of this order, the Secretary of State and the Secretary of Health and Human Services shall, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, deliver a plan to the President, through the APNSA [Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs], to enhance the capacity of USRAP [the US Refugee Admissions Program] to welcome refugees by expanding the use of community sponsorship and co-sponsorship models by refugee resettlement agencies, and by entering into new public-private partnerships.

    Hours after it was signed by President Biden on February 4, Jennifer Bond, the University of Ottawa law professor who chairs the GRSI, tweeted the new Executive Order “is an opportunity to re-build the global system and to empower millions of Americans to welcome their new neighbours.” In a follow up tweet the next day, she sent out “Huge congrats to all friends & allies who have worked so hard for this moment.”

    The GRSI appears to be prepared to do more than just celebrate the Biden administration’s plan to increase refugee resettlement through public-private partnership. At least one of its partner organizations, The Shapiro Foundation, has already paid for the resettlement of more than 1,100 refugees in Canada during 2018 and 2019 by funding local community sponsors of refugees, as its website explains:

    Our thesis was that the financial burden on sponsor groups was severely limiting participation, and financial capacity should not be a barrier to sponsorship. Working closely with our partners at The Refugee Hub at U Ottawa, the Immigration, Refugee and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), UNHCR, The Giustra Foundation, and Jewish Family Service of Ottawa, we created and funded a program (BVOR Fund) which would provide qualified sponsors with the funding they needed to be matched with a refugee family for resettlement. The program was a tremendous success, and with several of our philanthropic partners joining us, the result was the resettlement of 668 refugees in 2018. After being renewed in 2019, another 517 were matched. We are currently working with IRCC and other partners to leverage our experience and implement another version of the program for 2020 (and beyond).

    Overall, the Shapiro Foundation spent about $20 million on refugee resettlement projects in 2018 and 2019:

    Across the six categories, as well as our additional work outside of the refugee space, since the founding of The Shapiro Foundation (along with our family’s Donor Advised Fund), we have invested over $50 million with our partners. In each of 2018 and 2019, we funded more than $10 million/year and expect that amount to grow as we continue to gain expertise in driving impact with existing and new partners around the world.

    In September 2020, perhaps in anticipation of a Biden presidential victory, the GRSI concept of community sponsorship for refugees came to the United States when two of its sponsors, The Shapiro Foundation and the Open Society Foundations, were joined by G. Barry Landrie, and Laurie T. Franz to form the Community Sponsorship Catalyst Fund,, “a new fund to help organizations across the United States develop, implement, and enhance community sponsorship programs.”

    Community sponsorship is a significant commitment, but it also has proven to be an extremely rewarding one that often builds powerful bonds between sponsor groups and the refugees they welcome. The current moment presents a critical opportunity to reimagine resettlement and lay the groundwork for a future, reinvigorated system built on community participation.

    Through the Community Sponsorship Catalyst Fund, a successful applicant may receive a grant of up to $50,000 per year, for up to two years, to support the creation or enhancement of a community sponsorship program. Local resettlement agencies and other local community-based organizations supporting the resettlement and integration of forcibly displaced populations are encouraged to apply. The proposed projects are expected to begin in January 2021.

    While the focus of this initiative is on supporting local community sponsorship efforts, the Fund may also support national-level programming, where it helps facilitate local implementation.

    Secretary of State Antony Blinken, who has the responsibility to write up the rules for the refugee “public-private partnerships” specified in the new Executive Order, has long been an advocate for refugee admissions in the United States. In 2015, while Deputy Secretary of State in the Obama administration, he expressed those views in a video with a character from Sesame Street, the childrens’s television program:

    A video has resurfaced in which Antony Blinken, a long-time adviser to Joe Biden and a Washington diplomat tipped to become US Secretary of State, appeared on Sesame Street.

    Mr Blinken appeared on the programme as deputy Secretary of State to former president Barack Obama, to discuss the role of the United Nations and why Americans should welcome refugees.

    Social media users shared a video of Mr Blinken’s Sesame Street appearance ahead of a scheduled announcement on Tuesday by president-elect Biden on who will take top positions in his administration.

    The 58-year-old, who was expected to be named as Mr Biden’s appointment for Secretary of State, said on Sesame Street at the time that refugees are “just like you and me”.

    On the evening of February 4, shortly after President Biden signed the Executive Order, Secretary Blinken issued a statement, which read in part:

    Over the coming months and years, we will rebuild and expand the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program and other humanitarian programs so they reflect our values as a nation and are commensurate with global need, consistent with our domestic laws and international obligations, as well as our fundamental responsibility for the safety and security of the American people.

    This Order will spur innovation and draw on technological expertise to enhance the effectiveness of security vetting and fraud detection, streamline application processing, and strengthen data-driven decision-making. The concrete steps in the Order will also improve senior-level engagement and coordination, and fill significant staffing gaps in essential positions responsible for the refugee admissions process and other humanitarian programs. The United States will address processing backlogs and pursue security vetting processes that are effective, fair, and efficient, consistent with the humanitarian goals of our programs as well as the national security and foreign policy interests of the United States.

    The U.S. Refugee Admissions Program would not be where it is today if not for the millions of Americans in local communities across the country who have so generously welcomed refugees from around the world. Going forward, a key part of our collective effort will be the creation of broader linkages with community and private sponsorship programs that will strengthen the program. This approach will complement the traditional system of working with our network of domestic resettlement agencies to welcome and place new refugees. The State Department will continue its longstanding track record of meeting, consulting, and communicating regularly with state and local authorities to plan and coordinate refugee resettlement. (emphasis added).

    On February 5, one day after the president signed the executive order on refugees, members of the Biden administration headed to Congress and indicated they wanted the refugee admission surge to begin immediately, by invoking “emergency” powers to lift the 15,000 refugee admission ceiling former President Trump established for FY 2021 to 62, 500, as Breitbart News reported:

    President Biden’s proposal to increase the FY 2021 refugee resettlement ceiling to 62,500, first reported by CNN on Friday, twists and contorts the Refugee Act of 1980, which authorizes the president to set the annual refugee resettlement ceiling for each fiscal year in a letter sent to Congress the month before the fiscal year begins.

    The law also allows the president to increase previously established annual refugee resettlement ceilings under “emergency” circumstances after consulting with Congress. Such authority has been rarely used during the four decades the Refugee Admissions Program has been in operation.

    The relevant section of the U.S. Code Annotated (Title 8, Chapter 12, Subchapter II, Part I, § 1157) reads as follows:

    If the President determines, after appropriate consultation, that (1) an unforeseen emergency refugee situation exists, (2) the admission of certain refugees in response to the emergency refugee situation is justified by grave humanitarian concerns or is otherwise in the national interest, and (3) the admission to the United States of these refugees cannot be accomplished under subsection (a), the President may fix a number of refugees to be admitted to the United States during the succeeding period (not to exceed twelve months) in response to the emergency refugee situation and such admissions shall be allocated among refugees of special humanitarian concern to the United States in accordance with a determination made by the President after the appropriate consultation provided under this subsection.

    Should the Biden administration persuade Congress that an emergency refugee situation as defined under the law exists and the FY 2021 refugee ceiling is raised to 62,500, “public-private partnerships” to resettle refugees in the United States could begin to operate as soon as Secretary of State Antony Blinken delivers the plan the Executive Order requires of him to the APNSA (National Security Advisor), 43-year-old Jake Sullivan, which will be by the first week of June at the latest.”

  2. Pro-Migration Activist Sentenced for Attacking French Police at Protest (breitbart, Feb 14, 2021)
    https://www.breitbart.com/europe/2021/02/14/pro-migrant-activist-sentenced-attacking-french-police-demonstration/

    “A 32-year-old pro-migration activist has been sentenced to 18 months in prison after being found guilty of attacking police at a Paris protest.

    The attack took place at a demonstration on the 28th of November, with video played in court showing the accused kicking one officer and later beating other officers at the Place de la Bastille.

    Investigators later identified the man, finding him in a disused gendarmerie barracks where he lived with several other people linked to the environmental movement, Le Monde reports.

    The 32-year-old had volunteered for a pro-migration association. His lawyer Juan Branco claimed his client was angered over the dismantling of a migrant camp at the Place de la République days before the demonstration.

    Lawyer Jérôme Andrei, representing the police officers, said he was disappointed by the verdict and the sentence, saying he expected a harsher punishment. Branco, meanwhile, stated that his client would not be launching an appeal against the judgment…”

  3. Judge Blocks Deportation of Migrant Double Rapist Because of Poor Healthcare in Somalia (breitbart, Feb 14, 2021)
    https://www.breitbart.com/europe/2021/02/14/british-judge-blocks-deportation-of-somali-double-rapist/

    “A British has blocked efforts by Priti Patel’s Home Office to deport a double rapist from Somalia on grounds that he would not receive proper mental healthcare in his native country.

    The 49-year-old migrant claimed asylum in Britain after arriving in the country in 2004, however, the Home Office sought to deport the man after he was convicted of eight criminal offences over the course of six years, including the rape of two women.

    The Somali national was sentenced to a meagre seven years in prison for rape at knifepoint before being put in immigration detention.

    According to the Daily Mail, an immigration tribunal judgment heard: “While at HMP Stafford he was not able always to behave appropriately. On several occasions after January 2017 he was placed in segregation, his attitude and behaviour being aggressive and unacceptable.”

    The migrant was also deemed to pose a “high risk of serious harm” to the British public — yet the British judiciary blocked the Home Office twice from deporting him citing mental health issues which they argued would not be adequately addressed in Somalia.

    In the first hearing an immigration judge blocked his deportation, saying that mental healthcare in Somalia was “extremely poor” and adding that “those with mental health issues, particularly those who are aggressive, were often stigmatised, considered ‘possessed’, and subjected to inhuman and degrading treatment within both society and families, including stoning and chaining.”

    The Home Office appealed the decision, but Judge Judith Gleeson rejected the appeal, saying: “The making of the previous decision involved the making of no error on a point of law.”

    The Conservative-led Home Office, for its part, appears to have given no indication that it intends to press for changes to the laws which allow such decisions in Parliament, where Conservative leader Boris Johnson won a majority of 80 in 2019.

    British judges have often blocked the deportation of foreign national offenders and illegal aliens over the past years….”

  4. Firefighters battle Afghan-Iran border blaze for a 2nd day (abcnews, Feb 14, 2021)
    https://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/firefighters-battle-afghan-iran-border-blaze-2nd-day-75887634

    “Firefighters struggled for a second day Sunday to battle a massive fire that began when a fuel tanker exploded at a major crossing in Afghanistan’s western Herat province on the Iranian border, officials said.

    At least 20 people were injured and many of the more than 500 trucks lined up at the Islam Qala crossing carrying natural gas and fuel were still ablaze, according to Afghan officials and Iranian state media…”

  5. Turkey says 13 of its citizens killed by militants in N.Iraq (abcnews, Feb 14, 2021)
    https://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/turkey-13-citizens-killed-militants-niraq-75886861

    “Troops have found the bodies of 13 Turkish citizens abducted by Kurdish insurgents in a cave complex in northern Iraq, the Turkish defense minister said Sunday.

    Hulusi Akar said 12 of the victims were shot in the head and one died of a shoulder bullet wound. They were discovered in the Gara region near the Turkish border during an operation against the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK, launched on Feb. 10.

    Operation Claw-Eagle 2 led to the deaths of 48 PKK militants, including three senior members, and the capture of two insurgents, Akar said.

    Chief of General Staff Gen. Yasar Guler said the operation covered an area of 75 kilometers by 25 kilometers (47 miles by 15 miles), one of the largest areas to be targeted in recent campaigns against the PKK.

    “In searches of a cave, which was taken under control after intense clashes, the bodies of 13 of our abducted citizens were found,” Akar said from an operations center in Sirnak on the Turkish side of the border.

    The victims had been killed at the start of the operation to seize the cave complex, Akar said, adding that “all the terrorists in the cave… have been neutralized.”

    The identity of the Turkish citizens was not initially revealed and Akar said their kidnapping had not previously been disclosed due to security reasons.

    The 13 bodies were flown to the central Turkish city of Malatya, where a prosecutor will oversee an investigation.

    Malatya Governor Aydin Barus later said 10 of the dead had been identified and named them as soldiers or police officers, as well as two civilians, kidnapped inside Turkey in the last six years.

    In a statement carried by the PKK-linked Firat news agency, the PKK said “prisoners of war” consisting of members of the Turkish security forces and intelligence agency were killed as a result of Turkey’s attack.

    Turkish officials said the underground cave system, which had three entrances and nine separate chambers, was manned by ten insurgents, two of whom were captured before the cave was stormed by Turkish troops.

    Ammunition stores and PKK bases in the mountainous region were destroyed in the operation, which deployed air strikes and helicopter-borne soldiers. The PKK uses bases in northern Iraq to launch cross-border attacks against Turkey.

    Three Turkish troops died during the operation and three others were wounded, Akar said.

    Ruling party spokesman Omer Celik said the hostage killings were “an attack on all humanity” while Devlet Bahceli, who leads a nationalist party allied to the government, described the incident as “like a fireball that has crashed on the nation’s hearts.”

    Opposition leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu offered his condolences to those killed by the “treacherous terrorist organization”.

    Tens of thousands of people have been killed since the PKK, which is designated a terrorist organization by the U.S. and European Union, began an insurgency in Turkey’s majority Kurdish southeast region in 1984.”

  6. Israel Will Face ‘Toughest Response’ If It Crosses ‘Red Lines’ in Syria, Iran Warns (sputniknews, Feb 14, 2021)
    https://sputniknews.com/middleeast/202102141082072900-israel-will-face-toughest-response-if-it-crosses-red-lines-in-syria-iran-warns/

    “Over the past few years, Israel has reportedly carried out a number of airstrikes on Syria, which Tel Aviv says are aimed at countering the alleged Iranian military presence in the Arab republic. Damascus condemns such attacks as violations of Syria’s national sovereignty.

    Ali Asghar Khaji, a senior aide to the Iranian Foreign Ministry, has warned Israel against crossing “red lines” in Syria, in an apparent reference to the Jewish state’s alleged ongoing air raids on Syrian soil.

    The diplomat described “the nature of the Zionist entity” as “aggressive and hostile towards the region, the Palestinians, and neighboring countries”.

    “While the Syrian government is fighting terrorists, Israel supports them. Our presence in Syria is aimed at combating ISIS [Daesh*] and other terrorist groups, but if Israel wants to cross the ‘red lines’, it will face the toughest response, which will make them regret their actions”, Khaji argued.

    Syria Pens Letters to UN Over Alleged Israeli Attack on Hama
    The statement comes a few weeks after the Syrian Foreign Ministry sent letters to United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, the Security Council, and the UN Human Rights Council in the wake of the latest alleged Israeli air attack on the war-torn country.

    “Israel committed […] new aggression on the Syrian Arab Republic’s territories in the surrounding of Hama, which claimed the lives of two parents, two children, and injured four members of the same family, in addition to destroying a number of houses”, the letter reportedly read.

    According to the Ministry, last month’s airstrike was one of over fifty attacks carried out in the space of less than a year, with other strikes also purportedly claiming the lives of civilians and destroying their property. These ongoing strikes are a “clear violation” of Syrians’ human rights and of international law, and an attack against Syrians’ right to live in peace and security, Damascus stressed.

    Syria Shouldn’t Be Turned Into Battlefield for Israel and Iran, Lavrov Says
    Last week, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov warned Israel that Syria should not be turned into a battlefield between Tel Aviv and Tehran, and asked the Israeli government to give Moscow any information on any perceived threats instead of using the military option.

    “Our dear Israeli colleagues, if you have facts that your state is facing threats from Syrian territory, report them urgently and we will take every measure to neutralise the threat”, Lavrov stressed.

    While Israel usually doesn’t comment on the matter, the Syrian governnment has repeatedly attributed the missile attacks, which, in particular, targeted armament depots in Syria, to the Israel Defence Forces (IDF). Tel Aviv insists that Tehran is providing weapons to Damascus as a means of attacking Israel.

    Damascus and Tehran condemn the airstrikes, urging the international community to take steps to prevent further raids. Iran denies having a military presence in the Arab Republic apart from advisers sent in at the request of Damascus to help the Syrian government fight terrorist groups.

    Relations between Israel and Iran remain frozen, with Tehran denying the Jewish state’s right to exist and constantly vowing to destroy it.

    *Daesh (ISIL/ISIS/Islamic State), a terrorist group banned in Russia and a number of other countries”

    • Russia has total control over the sky above Syria.
      Plus the deconfliction mechanism provides a heads-up to Putin’s gremlins in real time.
      So why this cagey nonsense, Lavrov?

  7. Dozens of Houthis and pro-government troops killed in Yemen’s Marib (mee, Feb 14, 2021)
    https://www.middleeasteye.net/news/yemen-houthi-pro-government-fighting-killed-marib

    “Dozens of fighters were killed in overnight clashes in Yemen as Iran-backed Houthi rebels intensified attacks to seize the government’s last northern stronghold, officials told AFP on Sunday.

    Earlier this month, the Houthis resumed an offensive to seize oil-rich Marib, some 120km east of the capital Sanaa.

    The city’s loss would be disastrous for Yemen’s beleaguered leadership.

    Two government military officials said at least 16 pro-government fighters were killed and 21 wounded in the past 24 hours, adding that “dozens were killed” among Houthi ranks.

    The Houthis have cut off supply lines to a district about 50km south of the city, with “the goal to lay siege to Marib,” one of the sources told AFP.

    The battle for Marib is the latest development in a protracted conflict between the Houthi movement and a western-backed, Saudi-led coalition that intervened in Yemen in 2015 to reinstate the government of Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi.

    Saudi Arabia has invested heavily in Marib in recent years, and the Saudi-led coalition has intensified air strikes to stop the rebels from seizing the city.

    In addition to its oil fields and its Safer oil refinery, Marib is a key producer of natural gas, supplying the entire country. The Houthis have been poised to take the province, which neighbours Sanaa, since early last year.

    Houthi spokesman Mohamed Abdelsalam tweeted on Saturday that the rebels were fighting “only those militarily involved with the foreign enemy” amid government calls for residents to defend the city.

    “May the honourable people of Marib be reassured… and acknowledge that the aggressor coalition is fighting them, not for them,” he said.

    US President Joe Biden has announced an end of support for Saudi-led offensive operations in Yemen and halted some weapons sales to Riyadh, as part of a major reset in foreign policy following his inauguration in January.

    The rebels have also escalated attacks against Saudi Arabia, drawing condemnation from the international community.

    The coalition said on Sunday it had destroyed two explosive drones fired by the Houthis towards Khamis Mushait, in southwest Saudi Arabia.

    A military spokesman for the Houthi group said two drones launched on Sunday afternoon by its forces had struck Saudi Arabia’s Abha airport, to the west of Khamis Mushait.

    The kingdom had said a day earlier it had foiled a Houthi drone attack on Abha airport, just days after a rebel drone strike on the airport left a civilian aircraft ablaze.

    End of terrorist designation
    The upsurge in violence comes shortly after the United States decided to remove the rebels from its list of terrorist groups in order to ensure humanitarian work in Yemen is unimpeded and to pave the way to restart peace talks.

    On Sunday, Saudi’s permanent representative to the UN said that his country will continue to treat the Houthis as a terrorist organisation despite the US decision.

    Yemen’s grinding conflict has claimed tens of thousands of lives and displaced millions, according to international organisations, sparking what the UN calls the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.

    On Friday, the UN agencies warned that about 400,000 Yemeni children aged under five were in danger of dying of acute malnutrition this year.

    The UN agencies also warned that about 1.2 million pregnant or breastfeeding women are expected to suffer from extreme malnutrition in 2021.”

  8. Happy Valentines Day. Some sweet songs

    My Funny Valentine – Anita Baker, Ella Fitzgerald

    At Last – Etta James

    Valentine – Willie

    Valentine’s Day – Steve Earle

    Dance Me To The End Of Love – Leonard Cohen

    First Time Ever I Saw Your Face – Roberta Flack

    Welcome to My World – Angelina Jordon – what a treat to follow this girl since she was very little.

    Have a sweet day and keep on the sunny side.

    • A Positive Step Amidst Syrian Chaos

      Syria is still in a state of chaos, and unending bloodletting. Russia is however trying to play a constructive role in facilitating a dialogue between the Assad regime and Israel. Although it is not aimed at bringing peace, it might be helpful at some point.…

      [Credible rumors of secret meetings between top IDF and Syrian generals, chaired by Russian commander of Latakia.]

      Apparently, Russian President Vladimir Putin wants to emulate Donald Trump in being a peace-maker between Israel and an Arab state. The report concluded that Moscow hopes that building a direct relationship between the Syrian regime and Israel could constitute a lifeline that would enable it to obtain international support for its political project in Syria. 

      Naturally, a deal between Israel and Syria that ousted Iran from Syria would benefit Russia as well. It would end Israeli attacks in Syria, and eliminate Iranian competition with Russia in the reconstruction of Syria, as well as Iranians vying for major influence in Syria.

      While Russia’s peace efforts between Israel and Syria are commendable, it may be more hype than reality. Russia’s major newspaper Pravda headline from January 16, 2007, read, “Israel and Syria Reach Understanding on Peace Agreement in a Secret Meeting.”

      Eyal Alima, an Israeli journalist specializing in military affairs pointed out that, “Russia always plays a role in mediating between Damascus and Israel to prevent things from exploding,” and added, “Russia is important to Israel, not only militarily, but also for stability.” Perhaps in the midst of the chaos in Syria, a positive step is being taken by Russia.

      https://www.frontpagemag.com/fpm/2021/02/positive-step-amidst-syrian-chaos-joseph-puder/

  9. DAILY MAIL – REVEALED: Secret bat cages at Wuhan lab where researchers planned to breed animals for virus experiments – despite denials of British scientist on the WHO team ‘investigating’ the origins of Covid

    Laboratory was awarded patent for live bat cages months before virus spread
    Revelation comes as WHO backed Beijing’s claim leak from lab was ‘unlikely’
    Patent ‘capable of healthy growth and breeding under artificial conditions’

    The Chinese laboratory at the centre of suspicion over the origins of the coronavirus pandemic was awarded a patent for cages to hold live bats for testing just months before the virus started spreading.

    The revelation comes after the World Health Organisation last week backed Beijing’s line, saying that a leak from the institute was ‘highly unlikely’, while giving credence to theories that the virus had entered the country via frozen meat.

    The team included Peter Daszak, a British-born zoologist whose organisation EcoHealth Alliance has studied bat-borne viruses with Wuhan lab scientists for 15 years, and who has categorically denied that researchers keep the mammals for testing.

    However, The Mail on Sunday has established that the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV) filed an application in June 2018 to patent ‘bat rearing cages’ which would be ‘capable of healthy growth and breeding under artificial conditions’.

    The patent, which has been seen by this newspaper, was granted in January 2019 – 11 months before Beijing reported that the first cases of the virus in the city had broken out just a few miles from the institute.

    A separate patent, filed by the institute on October 16, 2020, relates to the ‘artificial breeding method of wild bat’.

    The patent discusses cross- species transmission of SARS- CoV from bat to humans and other animals, saying: ‘Bats infected with the virus naturally or artificially have no obvious clinical symptoms, and the mechanism is unknown’.

    It explicitly states that the method is for breeding bats for scientific experiments: ‘The invention aims to provide an artificial breeding method of wild bat predators, which aims at overcoming the defects in the prior art, and the wild bat predators are artificially domesticated, bred and passaged to establish an artificial breeding group, thereby providing a brand-new model experimental animal for scientific research.’

    Responding to a question over whether researchers were keeping live bats, Mr Daszak tweeted in April last year: ‘The researchers don’t keep the bats, nor do they kill them.

    ‘All bats are released back to their cave site after sampling. It’s a conservation measure and is much safer in terms of disease spread than killing them or trying to keep them in a lab.’

    And in December he appeared to repeat the claim by stating the labs he had worked with for 15 years – such as the one in Wuhan – ‘DO NOT have live or dead bats in them. There is no evidence anywhere that this happened’.

    The cloak of secrecy with which the Chinese government has enveloped the institute makes it hard to establish the extent to which the patents were translated into practice, but an online biography of the lab’s work also states that researchers have the capacity to keep 12 bat cages, along with 12 ferret cages.

    Last week, Mr Daszak, who has faced fierce criticism over his research and funding connections to the Wuhan lab, also took aim at US intelligence which has pointed to a lab leak being the ‘most credible’ source of the virus, in the words of the US State Department.

    Mr Daszak was part of the investigating WHO team which swung its weight behind the Chinese government’s attempts to dent any responsibility for the spread of the virus. Their findings were based on interviews with staff at the WIV, which has strong links to the Chinese army.

    This newspaper revealed last year that the WHO had allowed China to vet scientists taking part in the probe, while also appointing Mr Daszak to its ten-strong team – despite the British charity chief’s funding for research on bat viruses at the Wuhan laboratory having been previously stopped on safety grounds.

    The bat cage patent contains extensive details of the feeding, drinking and breeding conditions, saying the animals are ‘captured as needed, and… freed after taking [the] required sample or temporarily raised [for] a period of time’.

    And in November 2019, at a time when US intelligence points to a potential Covid-19 outbreak at the lab, the Wuhan lab filed a patent for a device to treat injuries sustained while working with pathogenic viruses in a biosafety lab.

    Researchers who filed the patent have worked at the WIV for more than a decade, including one scientist who was involved in studying coronaviruses in bats.

    The specialist tourniquet device, designed to wrap around the finger of someone who bleeds in a virology lab accident, appears to be the only one of several hundred publicly available patents which relates to the treatment of injuries.

    Charles Small, an open-source intelligence consultant who has studied the origins of the virus and discovered the patents, said: ‘The WIV describe catching wild bats in mountain caves and breeding them in their patented cages to use as animal models in scientific experiments. They mention infecting bats with viruses artificially.

    ‘The WIV’s patented method of handling bats known to carry SARS-related coronaviruses daily at feeding time risks coronavirus spillover.

    • ‘The WIV have also declared cages of ferrets and rabbits.

      ‘The WHO should provide a full account of the WIV’s bat and bat coronavirus experiments.’ Alan Mendoza, executive director of the Henry Jackson Society think-tank, said: ‘As this pandemic wears on, and more and more people tragically lose their lives, the questions continue to mount for China and the research carried out at its Wuhan Institute of Virology.

      ‘It’s becoming increasingly clear that the WHO’s investigation was not fit for purpose and what we need is the Chinese Communist Party to come clean and tell us the truth about Covid-19’s origins.’

      The Chinese Embassy, which did not comment on the testing of live bats at the WIV, said last night: ‘There have been more and more international reports that the virus and epidemics broke out in multiple places in the world in the latter half of the year 2019, indicating the necessity and urgency for WHO to pay similar visits to other countries and regions.’

      Mr Daszak declined to comment yesterday.

      World experts condemn official probe as ‘a charade’

      The World Health Organisation’s inquiry into the source of the pandemic is a ‘charade’ to appease China, leading experts on biosecurity and infectious diseases have told The Mail on Sunday.

      Instead of seeking the truth, last week’s initial findings, they say, were a political stunt that help the Beijing government in its desperation to be exonerated.

      The scientists accuse the UN body of brushing aside concerns over a possible lab leak in Wuhan to push ‘fanciful’ theories that Covid-19 emerged outside China and could have been imported into the city on frozen food.

      Bruno Canard

      Structural virologist and director of research of France’s National Centre for Scientific Research.

      ‘The WHO investigation is a masquerade. There are so many conflicts of interest and obfuscation that it is as if you asked Hassan Rouhani [Iran’s president] to lead an international check on Iran’s nuclear programme. The WHO is committing credibility suicide.’

      Richard Ebright

      Biosafety expert and professor of chemical biology at Rutgers University, New Jersey.

      ‘The mission was a charade. It has no credibility. Its members were willing – and, in at least one case, eager – participants in disinformation. The predetermined, preordained purpose was to raise the false-flag proposal that the virus originated outside China… and arrived in Wuhan through international travel or internationally shipped frozen food. No serious person considers internationally shipped frozen food as a plausible explanation of how the virus arrived in Wuhan.’

      David Relman

      Biosecurity expert and professor of microbiology and immunology at Stanford University, California.

      ‘If the only information you’re allowing to be weighed is provided by the very people who have everything to lose by revealing such evidence, that doesn’t come close to passing the sniff test.’

      Filippa Lentzos

      Biosecurity expert at the Departments of War Studies and of Global Health and Social Medicine at King’s College London.

      ‘The mission’s messaging was clearly political – not scientific – and aligned very closely with Beijing’s narrative of a possible origin source outside China’s borders. They provided no credible evidence for why they do not feel the lab-leak hypothesis should remain on the table or why other explanations were seen as more likely.’

      Colin Butler

      Former WHO adviser and epidemiologist at Australian National University.

      ‘The dismissal of the lab-leak theory could have been provided in a novel by George Orwell.

      ‘The evidence against this hypothesis appears to boil down to something like: ‘We spent three hours at the Wuhan Institute of Virology, we talked to the people there, and we formed the opinion they are honest and competent. When they said the virus had not leaked, we believed them.’

      ‘I am over-simplifying, but this conclusion is based on flimsy evidence. WHO greatly harmed its reputation by including Peter Daszak [a British scientist] on the team when he has such obvious conflicts of interest from his work and friendships in Wuhan.’

      Jacques Van Helden

      Professor of bioinformatics at Aix-Marseille Université, Marseille, France.

      ‘The WHO panel concluded the lab incident hypothesis is extremely unlikely and would not be further studied, but did not provide a single scientific argument. We must keep exploring every scenario, evidence-based and prejudice-free, while avoiding speculation and political hijacking.’

      Monali Rahalkar

      Microbiologist at Agharkar Research Institute in India, who has spent the past eight months investigating the origins of Covid-19.

      ‘Ruling out the lab-leak hypothesis without solid evidence makes no sense. The outbreak started in Wuhan. This city hosted Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV) and two other centres carrying out research into coronaviruses. The WIV institute collected the closest known relative to Sars-Cov-2 [the virus that causes Covid-19] and other viruses from a coal mine in southern China, where miners developed a mystery respiratory illness.’

      Nikolai Petrovsky

      Professor of medicine at Flinders University, Adelaide, and coronavirus vaccine developer.

      ‘This preliminary report goes further than many might have expected in emphasising two key assertions made by the Chinese government but challenged by others: that the virus source of the pandemic may lie outside China and the possibility the transmission into China occurred via frozen food.

      The idea the virus was brought into China on frozen feeds is at best fanciful and looks to be a smokescreen. A truly independent investigation remains needed.’

      Raina Macintyre

      Infectious diseases expert and head of Biosecurity Research Programme, Kirby Institute, University of New South Wales, Australia.

      ‘The team does not reveal anything substantially new. The virus may have emerged in nature but a lab accident is also a possibility as the BSL4 lab (WIV) was studying bat coronaviruses – including the virus found in the miners outbreak in 2012. They do not provide any evidence for dismissing a lab leak.’

      Rossana Segreto

      Microbiologist at University of Innsbruck, Austria, and author of papers examining possible genetic manipulation of the virus.

      ‘The WHO team does not seem to be acting seriously by dismissing a lab leak before the world’s media, then later saying all hypotheses require further study.

      ‘The structure of Sars-Cov-2 shows this virus could have been produced artificially. There is still no scientifically verifiable proof the pathogen developed naturally, yet a potential human error-induced lab accident as a source of the pandemic was ruled out.

      ‘This is negligent, putting us all at risk, when there are multiple examples of previous lab accidents and dozens of laboratories around the world are experimenting with mutated pathogens with potential to trigger a pandemic.’

      Jamie Metzl

      Healthcare and technology expert, member of the WHO advisory committee on human genome editing.

      ‘I was appalled by the announcement that the possibility of an accidental lab leak does not merit further investigation. While no evidence has yet been found indicating Covid-19 stems from transmission between animal hosts in the wild or from frozen foods, as the committee entertains, significant evidence points to accidental leak as a possible origin.

      ‘We need urgently an unrestricted forensic investigation without access managed by the Chinese authorities.’

      Alina Chan

      Molecular biologist at Broad Institute of Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

      ‘The investigation served China’s purposes by delivering precisely the outcome it wanted since the WHO was saying things such as the need to investigate frozen food transmission and suggestions the virus came from another country while ruling out a lab leak. This felt like a performance. WHO has shown that it has no leverage against a country such as China that plays hardball.’

      Rasmus Nielsen

      Professor of computational biology at University of California, Berkeley.

      ‘No responsible scientist should make strong claims about the origin at this point. Chinese researchers were banned in March from investigating and other researchers have not had access to samples and data. It is my understanding from press statements the only evidence used to exclude a lab leak is the apparent high safety standards of lab at the Wuhan Institute of Virology. This is a very weak statement that is more political than scientific.’

      Michael Lin

      Associate professor of Neurobiology and Bioengineering at Stanford University, California.

      ‘The idea of transmission by frozen food is theoretically possible but so far there’s been no known cases of this happening. The perfunctory investigation, consisting of asking Chinese officials and scientists questions, is far from adequate in putting to rest concerns about lab leak.’

      https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-9257413/Secret-bat-cages-Wuhan-lab-researchers-planned-breed-animals-virus-experiments.html

  10. Double Masking For Dummies – How The CDC Provided “Scientific Data” For Double Masks By Using Dummies

    Seriously, this is what is passing for science (1 Timothy 6:20) these days. You couldn’t make this stuff up and yet, the unconstitutional Center for Disease Control have done it. They have secured “scientific data” to support Dr. Anthony Fauci’s push for double masking. Of course, I’m speaking tongue in cheek about the alleged data. However, the CDC has now officially ruled that wearing two masks can decrease exposure to infectious aerosols by up to 95%. Of course, you must know that they conducted their tests on dummies…. yes, dummies.

    You really can’t make this stuff up.

    Bringing the evidence is investigative journalist Jefferey Jaxen and Del Bigtree of The Highwire.

    We already know that the CDC has recommended masking and claims that it slows the spread of the unproven, unisolated, alleged COVID-19, but there is zero evidence of such a claim.

    According to the CDC, their new report claims that they are adding that they “conducted experiments to assess two ways of improving the fit of medical procedure masks: fitting a cloth mask over a medical procedure mask, and knotting the ear loops of a medical procedure mask and then tucking in and flattening the extra material close to the face. Each modification substantially improved source control and reduced wearer exposure.”

    I have to laugh here. How in the world should this be considered “scientific”? It’s a joke, just like this fake plandemic they are pushing on the people.

    more :

    https://thewashingtonstandard.com/double-masking-for-dummies-how-the-cdc-provided-scientific-data-for-double-masks-by-using-dummies/

    • RESEARCH ARTICLE

      Corona children studies “Co-Ki”: First results of a Germany-wide registry on mouth and nose covering (mask) in children

      ABSTRACT –

      Background: Narratives about complaints in children and adolescents caused by wearing a mask are accumulating. There is, to date, no registry for side effects of masks.

      Methods: At the University of Witten/Herdecke an online registry has been set up where parents, doctors, pedagogues and others can enter their observations. On 20.10.2020, 363 doctors were asked to make entries and to make parents and teachers aware of the registry.

      Results: By 26.10.2020 the registry had been used by 20,353 people. In this publication we report the results from the parents, who entered data on a total of 25,930 children. The average wearing time of the mask was 270 minutes per day. Impairments caused by wearing the mask were reported by 68% of the parents. These included irritability (60%), headache (53%), difficulty concentrating (50%), less happiness (49%), reluctance to go to school/kindergarten (44%), malaise (42%) impaired learning (38%) and drowsiness or fatigue (37%).

      Discussion: This world’s first registry for recording the effects of wearing masks in children is dedicated to a new research question. Bias with respect to preferential documentation of children who are particularly severely affected or who are fundamentally critical of protective measures cannot be dismissed. The frequency of the registry’s use and the spectrum of symptoms registryed indicate the importance of the topic and call for representative surveys, randomized controlled trials with various masks and a renewed risk-benefit assessment for the vulnerable group of children: adults need to collecticely reflect the circumstances under which they would be willing to take a residual risk upon themselves in favor of enabling children to have a higher quality of life without having to wear a mask.

      more :

      https://www.researchsquare.com/article/rs-124394/v2

  11. SYRIA – MYSTERIOUS WEAPON KNOCKED OUT SYRIAN ARMY BATTLE TANK IN SOUTHERN IDLIB

    On February 12, a mysterious weapon knocked out a battle tank of the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) in the southern Idlib countryside.

    The battle tank blew up in the early morning hours after being hit with an unknown object. The battle tank was situated south of the government-held town of Ma`arat al-Nu`man, way behind the frontline.

    Opposition sources reported the incident, with some claiming that the battle tank was hit with an artillery round fired by Greater Idlib militants.

    However, this high-level of accuracy is nearly impossible to achieve with unguided artillery rounds. The battle tank was also situated beyond the militants’ line of sight.

    The battle tank may have been targeted by one of the Turkish combat drones which operate over Greater Idlib on a regular basis. Another possibility is that the battle tank was struck with a laser-guided artillery shell or rocket, after being illuminated by a Turkish drone.

    Last year, Turkey’s ROKETSA revealed its TRLG-230 laser-guided rocket system. The system was successfully deployed against Armenian forces during the 2020 Nagorno-Karabakh war. The Syrian battle tank may have been struck with the TRLG-230 or a similar system.

    The Turkish military maintains more than 60 posts, camps and bases throughout Greater Idlib. Heavy weapons, similar to the TRLG-230, are deployed in most of these positions.

    In any case, the strike represents a serious escalation by Turkey and a violation of the agreement signed with Russian on March 5, 2020. Ankara forces engaged in a fierce confrontation with the SAA and its allies last year to stop them from neutralizing the remaining terrorist groups in Greater Idlib.

    https://southfront.org/mysterious-weapon-knocked-out-syrian-army-battle-tank-in-southern-idlib/

  12. Half of Swedish Students Put Limits on Daily Lives Due to Fear of Crime (breitbart, Feb 14, 2021)
    https://www.breitbart.com/europe/2021/02/14/half-of-swedish-students-put-limits-on-daily-lives-due-to-fear-of-crime/

    “According to a survey by the Swedish National Council for Crime Prevention (Brå), around half of students avoid certain people, activities and areas due to a fear of being the victims of crime.

    The school survey, which questioned 6,000 students across the country, revealed at 56 per cent of girls and 46 per cent of boys were so concerned about becoming victims of crime in their everyday lives that they place various limitations on where they can go and who they interact with.

    Anna Gavell Frenzel, an investigator at the National Council for Crime Prevention, told broadcaster SVT: “It is worrying that there are so many students who feel anxious and it is problematic that you feel that you cannot do certain things out of concern about being subjected to crime.”

    48 per cent of the students stated that they had been the victims of some sort of crime.

    Investigator Frenzel noted an overlap between those who have committed crimes and those who have been victims, saying two-thirds of those who have committed crime had also been the victims of it.

    Few students actually report being the victims of crimes to the police, according to the survey, with just a third of those who claim to have been the victims of theft saying they had filed a report with the police.

    The survey comes after a wave of so-called “humiliation robberies” — which are said to often involve migration-background attackers and young victims.

    The robberies are often followed by the victims being forced to perform humiliating acts of degradation such as kissing the feet of their attackers.

    Following an outcry from the public, Brå claimed that it would investigate any possible links between migration and the trend of youth robberies in November of last year.”

  13. Marco Rubio questions whether Trump impeachment sets ‘new precedent’ that could target Hillary Clinton
    Chris Enloe
    3-4 minutes

    Could the Democratic Party’s pursuit of another Trump impeachment have consequences for one of their own? That is exactly what Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) suggested could happen.
    What happened?

    During former President Donald Trump’s Senate impeachment trial on Friday, Rubio asked whether retroactively using the Constitution’s impeachment mechanisms against Trump would create a ripple effect allowing other former government officials to be impeached and face a Senate trial.

    In his question, Rubio asked about a “former secretary of state,” a clear reference to Hillary Clinton.

    https://www.theblaze.com/news/marco-rubio-questions-whether-trump-impeachment-sets-new-precedent?utm_source=theblaze-dailyAM&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Daily-Newsletter__AM%202021-02-14&utm_term=ACTIVE%20LIST%20-%20TheBlaze%20Daily%20AM

    (Richard: For this to become a regularly occurring event two things have to happen, 1: We have to hold off the communist take over long enough to elect a Republican dominated Congress. 2) The Republicans have to decide that what is good for the goose and good for the gander. Number 1 is a 50-50 proposition at best but we have dodged bullets of the same size before so we may be able to do it again. If we can pull off number 1 number 2 is probably very likely. We aren’t talking about the old Blue Blood Republican Party, we are talking about the new populist Trump dominated Republican Party.

    The Democrats in their quest to force the US into full communism have sowed the wind and everyone is going to reap the whirlwind. The Dems have come close to turning us into a Third World country and are about to discover that Third World Politics are a double edged sword that can be very dangerous when wielded by the population seeking revenge on the tyrants that have been oppressing them.

    • The Uniparty, some call them “two wings of the same vulture”.

      Lee Smith likens this globalist elite to the aristocratic Athenians, who eagerly ditched democracy in service to the Spartans. Their brief rule was marked by the worst tyranny ever.

      Lee Smith calls their counterpart today the “China class”.

  14. (Richard: The Second Obama Purge has begun, Obama purged the high ranking officers and NCOs that weren’t politically reliable, the purged officers were loyal to Obama and the left not the US. Now the political reliability testing and the new pledge are going to drive a lot of the lower enlisted grades out of the military as soon as their enlistments are up. If China and Iran have any brains they will wait until next year before they start any trouble. By that time about one third of the good enlisted personal will be gone from the military.)

    US Navy task force makes sailors pledge to ‘advocate for and acknowledge all lived experiences and intersectional identities’
    Paul Sacca
    4-5 minutes

    The pledge for a new United States Navy task force has some very progressive-sounding language in it that looks like it was written by a woke campus diversity officer. Task Force Navy One, which was “established to combat discrimination in the Navy,” requires members to “advocate for and acknowledge all lived experiences and intersectional identities of every Sailor in the Navy.”

    The Task Force Navy One was established on June 30 with the mission to “address the issues of racism, sexism and other destructive biases and their impact on naval readiness.”

    “The task force will seek to promptly address the full spectrum of systemic racism, advocate for the needs of underserved communities, work to dismantle barriers and equalize professional development frameworks and opportunities within the Navy,” the press release states.

    “As a Navy — uniform and civilian, active and reserve — we cannot tolerate discrimination or racism of any kind. We must work to identify and eliminate individual and systemic racism within our force,” Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Mike Gilday said in June. “That is why we are standing up Task Force One Navy, which will work to identify and remove racial barriers and improve inclusion within our Navy.”

    https://www.theblaze.com/news/us-navy-task-force-woke-pledge?utm_source=theblaze-dailyAM&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Daily-Newsletter__AM%202021-02-14&utm_term=ACTIVE%20LIST%20-%20TheBlaze%20Daily%20AM

  15. Arkansas A.G.: I’ll Take Legal Action to Re-Open Keystone Pipeline Construction if Needed
    By
    Ben Cope –
    February 13, 2021
    0
    558

    On Friday’s broadcast of the Fox Business Network’s “Maria Bartiromo’s Wall Street,” Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge (R) stated that she will pursue legal action to re-open the construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline if President Joe Biden doesn’t reverse his decision to cancel the pipeline.

    Host Maria Bartiromo asked, “Leslie, are you and the other 13 states going to take legal action in order to re-open construction of this pipeline?”
    Rutledge responded, “Well, potentially, if need be. We’re hoping that President Biden will reconsider and cancel his cancellation of the Keystone Pipeline. Because these are real Americans, real Arkansans whose jobs are being lost because of this decision by President Biden. It’s also an economic impact, not only for those workers, but across the country, and particularly here in Arkansas. … But it’s also about energy independence for all Americans and for the United States of America.”

    https://libertysword.com/arkansas-a-g-ill-take-legal-action-to-re-open-keystone-pipeline-construction-if-needed

  16. Ted Cruz Asks Impeachment Managers if Kamala Harris Incited Riots from Black Lives Matter Protests
    4 minutes

    Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) submitted a question during the fourth day of the Senate impeachment trial of former President Donald Trump asking if language Vice President Kamala Harris used in 2020 regarding Black Lives Matter protests is considered incitement given the impeachment managers’ “proposed standard” for incitement.

    Cruz’s question began, “While violent riots were raging, Kamala Harris said on national TV, ‘They’re not gonna let up, and they should not,’” quoting viral comments then-Sen. Harris (D-CA) made on the Late Show with Stephen Colbert last June in reference to nationwide Black Lives Matter protests.
    The protests, which were sparked by the death of George Floyd at the hands of police in May, were largely peaceful, but, in many instances, ended up devolving into destructive riots throughout the country that included vandalism, looting, fires, violence, injury, and in some cases even death over the course of several months in 2020.”And she also raised money to bail out violent rioters,” Cruz’s question continued in reference to the Minnesota Freedom Fund (MFF) Harris urged her Facebook and Twitter followers to support in June 2020.

    https://libertysword.com/ted-cruz-asks-impeachment-managers-if-kamala-harris-incited-riots-from-black-lives-matter-protests

  17. The Return of ISIS is a Challenge Biden Must Not Ignore
    Con Coughlin
    5-6 minutes

    The most recent manifestation of the deadly effectiveness of the Islamic State (ISIS) was demonstrated last month when it carried out a double suicide bombing at a Baghdad street market that killed 32 people and wounded 75 others. Pictured: The scene of the double suicide bombing in Baghdad on January 21, 2021. (Photo by Sabah Arar/AFP via Getty Images)

    As the Biden administration prepares to implement its new policy on the Middle East, it is vital that its preoccupation with reviving the Iran deal does not result in the White House overlooking the considerable threat the Islamist fanatics of ISIS continue to pose to global security.

    Since taking office, the main priorities of President Joe Biden’s newly-appointed foreign policy team, so far as the Middle East is concerned, have been to consider the prospects of reopening negotiations with Tehran over its nuclear programme, and to establish a dialogue with Palestinian leaders, who spent the past three years boycotting President Donald Trump over his decision to relocate the US Embassy to Jerusalem.

    By taking this somewhat narrow view of the numerous challenges facing the region, there are mounting concerns that the Biden team will not pay sufficient attention to the mounting threat posed by ISIS terrorists.

    https://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/17023/isis-return-biden

  18. “Confess Your Crime in Writing”: The Persecution of Christians, January 2021
    Raymond Ibrahim

    Twice in four days during January, the 800-year-old Spånga Church in Stockholm, Sweden (pictured) was firebombed. (Image source: Udo Schröter/Flickr, cc by-sa 2.0)

    The following are among the abuses inflicted on Christians by Muslims throughout the month of January, 2021:

    Attacks on Apostates and Evangelists

    Uganda: A Muslim man beat his 13-weeks-pregnant wife, causing her to miscarry, after he learned that she had converted to Christianity. On Jan. 13, Mansitula Buliro, the 45-year-old woman in question and mother of seven, was preparing for Muslim evening prayers with her husband when she began to have Christian visions. On the following day she secretly visited a Christian neighbor, prayed with her, and put her faith in Christ. Right before she left, a Muslim man knocked on the Christian neighbor’s door and said, “Mansitula, I thought you were a Muslim—how come I heard prayers mentioning the name of Issa [Jesus]?” When Mansitula returned home, her husband informed her that he had been told that she had become Christian. “I kept quiet,” Mansitula later explained in an interview:

    https://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/17056/persecution-of-christians-january

  19. Pelosi Furious About Impeachment Trial Results, Rules Out Censuring Trump
    By Allen Zhong
    February 13, 2021 Updated: February 13, 2021
    biggersmaller Print

    House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said she’s not interested in censuring former President Donald Trump after the Senate acquitted Trump in his second impeachment trial.

    She implied that censuring Trump would be similar to giving “a little slap on the wrist.”

    “We censure people for using stationaries for the wrong purpose. You don’t censure people for inciting insurrection that kills people in the Capitol,” she added.

    Pelosi made the remarks during a surprise visit to the House impeachment managers during a press conference after the Senate acquitted the former president.

    She seemed furious about the result of the impeachment trials. She slapped on the table several times and criticized the senators who voted against the conviction as a “cowardly group of Republicans.”

    The Senate voted to acquit Trump in a 57:43 vote. All Democrats and seven Republicans voted to convict him. The Republicans who voted across the party line include Sens. Richard Burr (R-N.C.), Susan Collins (R-Maine), Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Mitt Romney (R-Utah), Ben Sasse (R-Neb.), Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), and Pat Toomey (R-Pa.).

    https://www.theepochtimes.com/pelosi-furious-about-impeachment-trial-results-rules-out-censuring-trump_3695894.html?utm_source=morningbriefnoe&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=mb-2021-02-14

  20. Aim of Trump Impeachment Is to ‘Chill and Criminalize Speech’ that Opposes Leftist Agenda: Tom Fitton
    By Tom Ozimek
    February 13, 2021 Updated: February 14, 2021
    biggersmaller Print

    Tom Fitton, conservative activist and president of Judicial Watch, told The Epoch Times’ “American Thought Leaders” in an interview that he believes the aim of bringing an incitement of insurrection charge against former President Donald Trump is to “chill and criminalize speech” that opposes the agenda of those on the political left.

    Calling Trump’s second impeachment trial “anti-constitutional,” Fitton remarked that it amounts to an attempt to silence the voices of those raising issues of concern that run counter to certain political objectives.

    “It’s really an attack on civil rights and President Trump, the civil rights of his supporters who share his concerns about the issues he’s raised,” Fitton said.

    “And what the left is trying to do is outlaw opposition to its agenda. Number one on the list is concerns about election integrity,” he said. “If you raise concerns about it, you need to be de-platformed, or worse.”

    House Democrats making the case for impeachment have argued that Trump set the stage for violence through repeated claims that the election results were fraudulent.

    https://www.theepochtimes.com/aim-of-trump-impeachment-is-to-chill-and-criminalize-speech-that-opposes-leftist-agenda-tom-fitton_3695574.html?utm_source=morningbriefnoe&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=mb-2021-02-14

  21. Chinese Money Pours Into Hong Kong as It Becomes a Stock Gambling Paradise
    By William Fang
    February 13, 2021 Updated: February 13, 2021
    biggersmaller Print

    On the eve of President Joe Biden’s inauguration, the Hong Kong stock market soared as Chinese money poured in.

    On Jan. 19, the daily trading volume of Hong Kong stocks exceeded 300 billion Hong Kong dollars ($38.7 billion). On Jan. 21, the Hang Seng Index, which tracks the Hong Kong stock market, rose by more than 10 percent, ranking first among the most important global indexes according to NetEase Finance.

    Despite the spread of the pandemic in Hong Kong, a weak economy, and the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) increasingly stringent control, the Hong Kong stock market experienced an unusual rise from Jan. 6 to Jan. 21.

    Hong Kong Guotai Junan Securities (GJS) issued a report predicting that Hong Kong stocks are expected to have an “index bull market” in 2021 However, according to expert analysis, this bull market is driven by policies and built on a weak foundation. It functions more like a casino for the CCP to collect money.

    https://www.theepochtimes.com/chinese-money-pours-into-hong-kong-as-it-becomes-a-stock-gambling-paradise_3646228.html?utm_source=morningbriefnoe&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=mb-2021-02-14

  22. Democrat Senator Raphael Warnock Under Investigation For Voter Registration Misconduct: Reports
    Ryan Saavedra
    4-5 minutes

    Democrat Senator Raphael Warnock (D-GA) is under investigation in his own state over allegations that an organization that he was a part of engaged in voter registration misconduct.

    The Georgia State Election Board voted unanimously on Wednesday, 3-0, to move forward with an investigation into the organization, which was founded by left-wing activist Stacey Abrams, over allegations that the organization did not follow deadlines.

    “Warnock, a Democrat elected last month to the U.S. Senate, is named as a respondent in the case because he was listed as the CEO for the New Georgia Project at the time,” The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported, later adding that the organization claims that its own documents misidentified Warnock as the CEO when he was board chairman.

    https://www.dailywire.com/news/democrat-senator-raphael-warnock-under-investigation-for-voter-registration-misconduct-reports

  23. SKY NEWS AUSTRALIA – WHO’s COVID failure another example of a ‘global institution crisis’

    The World Health Organisation’s failure to objectively investigate the origins of COVID-19 shows there isn’t a global institution capable of exploring the emergence of pandemics, according to the US Right to Know group’s Gary Ruskin.

    An international team of World Health Organisation (WHO) scientists, working with experts in China, has been researching how the COVID-19 pandemic began.

    However, the investigation has been criticised for kowtowing to China, in particular when it comes to the Wuhan Institute of Virology, which did not open its books to the investigators.

    Recently, the head of the World Health Organisation had to deny reports investigators dismissed the theory COVID-19 originated from a laboratory in Wuhan.

    In a press briefing on Friday, director general Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said: “Some questions have been raised as to whether some hypotheses have been discarded.”

    “Having spoken with some members of the team, I wish to confirm that all hypotheses remain open and require further analysis and study.”

    Mr Ruskin todl Sky News his organisation, the US Right to Know, has been looking into some of the investigators.

    He said some have been pushing the idea that COVID-19 originated after the virus jumped from an ” intermediary host species” to humans well before that theory was rigorously tested.

    “We plainly do not have an international way of investigating these terrible pandemic disease outbreaks,” Mr Ruskin said.

    “We are in the middle of an international institution crisis, and frankly, we need to do better.”

  24. Iran Tests New Domestically-Made Missile as Defence Minister Praises Tehran’s Deterrent Power (sputniknews, Feb 14, 2021)
    https://sputniknews.com/middleeast/202102141082074681-iran-tests-new-domestically-made-missile-as-defence-minister-praises-tehrans-deterrent-power/

    “The Iranian Army has successfully tested a new advanced missile with a range of 300 kilometres, Army Ground Force Commander Brigadier General Kiomars Heidari told reporters on Sunday.

    He added that the test was conducted to evaluate the performance specifications of the domestically-made missile, which Heidari said is capable of hitting targets with pinpoint accuracy in all weather conditions.

    The remarks came as Iranian Defence Minister Amir Hatami touted Tehran’s deterrent power based on the development of sophisticated domestically-manufactured missiles.

    “Today, all of the Islamic Republic of Iran’s missiles are precise and have great maneuverability and the necessary explosive power to maintain the country’s defensive deterrence”, Hatami said in an interview with the Iranian news agency Tasnim on Sunday…”

    • New Zealand: Ardern places Auckland under 3-day lockdown after COVID outbreak

      New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said Auckland would be put under a snap lockdown for 72 hours after three members of a South Auckland family tested positive for coronavirus.

      Ardern announced the news via a live stream on her Facebook page from Wellington on Sunday and added Auckland would be put under level 3 measures, with the rest of New Zealand moving to level 2 measures.

  25. Do Democrats think it’s OK to cheat if it’s just a little? – Liberty Unyielding
    Ben Bowles Ben Bowles is a freelance writer and regular contributor to “Liberty Unyielding.”
    4-5 minutes

    Do Democrats think it’s OK to cheat if it’s just a little?

    Lana Zak, Michael van der Veen (Image: YouTube screen grab)

    At the conclusion of yesterday’s re-impeachment trial, several Republican senators followed their conscience and voted guilty. Zero Democrats voted to acquit, but that’s primarily because most of them have no conscience to follow.

    That goes in spades for the House impeachment managers, who manipulated what little evidence they professed to have to attempt to force a guilty verdict.

    https://libertyunyielding.com/2021/02/14/do-democrats-think-its-ok-to-cheat-if-its-just-a-little/

  26. Army faces crippling mass strike as hundreds of thousands protest in Myanmar
    By Reuters
    4-5 minutes

    Hundreds of thousands of protesters took to the streets in Myanmar for a ninth day of anti-coup demonstrations on Sunday, as the new army rulers grappled to contain a strike by government workers that could cripple their ability to run the country.

    Trains in parts of the country stopped running after staff refused to go to work, local media reported, while the military deployed soldiers to power plants only to be confronted by angry crowds.

    As evening fell, armoured vehicles were seen in the commercial capital of Yangon for the first time since the coup, witnesses said.

    A civil disobedience movement to protest against the Feb. 1 coup that deposed the civilian government led by Aung San Suu Kyi started with doctors. It now affects a swathe of government departments.

    The junta ordered civil servants to go back to wo

    https://www.nbcnews.com/news/world/army-faces-crippling-mass-strike-hundreds-thousands-protest-myanmar-n1257914

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