Reader’s Links for April 11, 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

86 Replies to “Reader’s Links for April 11, 2021”

  1. Massachusetts has more reported cases of the new P.1 variant of COVID-19 than any other state in the country, and researchers said over the weekend most of those cases stem from a cluster on Cape Cod.

    A report from the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard found 54 such cases in Massachusetts, and said 43 of them stem from the Cape cluster. The variant, which originated in Brazil, spreads faster, but researchers still don’t know if it is deadlier or if it can reinfect people who have already had the virus.

    • The new P.1 variant of COVID-19 1st found in travelers from Brazil has been detected in Massachusetts more than anywhere else in the country, and the lion’s share of those cases are part of a cluster on Cape Cod, according to researchers….

      “When you see that there are a lot of [P.1] cases in Massachusetts, that’s partially because we’re looking for it,” said William Hanage, an associate professor of epidemiology at the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health. “It’s been expected to happen at some point and it’s certainly happened now.”

      • Why in my head, do I have this little movie of Chinese agents, making variants and each time we get close to coming up for air, going to some country and releasing it like in the movie, 12 Monkeys, and then we name each new variant after the place they released it, but never after Wuhan, as we shutter our economies again, and stress the hospitals in brand new ways as they can no longer have more than 1 Covid patient per room thanks to multiple variants in one patient.

        Where did that movie come from I wonder.

        • The worst thing about this “crisis” is that all theories sound reasonable and have varying degrees of truth. Given what Xi has been doing lately your theory is possible and may have a fairly high probability.

          The only way to prove this is to fight a full fledged war against China, win and then find the evidence in the after war occupation. A war that spins out of control is likely, our winning (assuming we can get rid of the current US leadership) is likely. Occupation of all of China is less likely. I don’t know if after the war the west would have enough money to occupy China. If we do all of the above will the evidence we need survive?

        • I agree. The new variant mutations came from somewhere.
          China’s intent is to dominate the planet, and this is achieved economically.

          China tidbit: China’s Central Bank Has Created Its Own Cryptocurrency

          A new Chinese government version of a digital currency is to be launched and controlled by its central bank. It is expected to give China’s government vast new tools to monitor both its economy and its people.

          By design, the digital yuan will negate one of bitcoin’s major draws: anonymity for the user.Beijing is also positioning the digital yuan for international use and designing it to be untethered to the global financial system, where the U.S. dollar has been king since World War II.

          “In order to protect our currency sovereignty and legal currency status, we have to plan ahead,” said Mu Changchun, who is leading the project at the People’s Bank of China.”


    • As a reader I like to use the price of paperback books and comic books:

      In the 50s paperback books were 35 to 40 cents each and comics were a dime.

      In the 60s paperback books were 40 to 50 cents and comics were 12 to 15 cents.

      In the 70s paperback books raised up to $1.25 and Comics raised up to 50 to 75 cents.

      In the 80s paperback books were about $2.50 and increasing and comics were well over $1.00 (I quite the comics when they turned unpatriotic)

      Now Paperback books are closing on $10,00 and I don’t want to think about the price of comics.

      All of the above is based on my memory so the price may be a little off.

      I do know for a fact that in 1966 when I went in the Army one dollar an hour as good wages and most rental housing was Thirty to 50 dollars a month.

      All of the above was caused by the Keynesian Economics with its planed inflation, They never look at what their inflation does to the poor and how eventually their even using their devalued currency the working class is too expensive to hire. This brings about massive unemployment and dependency on the government.

      The over hyped Wuhan Flu crisis and the related lock downs have simply accelerated the lefts moves to convert our economy from laborers in the factories to robots with most people being dependent on the government.

      An ideal thought, would the Wuhan Flu have gotten out if Hillary had been elected?

    • Hey Johnny, reading, keeping up with world politics, I know education is important, BUT opening the pubs is importanter!

  2. I receive a phone call just now regarding a man who had abandoned his wife and four kids when they were young, and now they were much older he was trying to reconnect – with no success.

    All fatherless children have to attach to something. It is natural, like a duck emerging out of the egg will imprint on a fox if it the first thing it sees, so that the strongest authority in the home is their god. Santa Clause is a comfort for such abandoned children. The romance of the generous and giving father, that withdraws affection depending on whether they were bood or bad. This Coke-drinking Demon from Hell.

    For muslims, Socialists and Sexuals is is through the same mothers’ manipulation, through Muhammad and Allah, Dear Leader and State, and Cagney and Lacey. Good Cop, Bad Cop. These spirits of Authority. For the males are house-slaves, who get the only life they know by drawing off the femaled. Bucks, Cucks and Sucks. To be found either,
    competing for her dominance,
    competing for her affection,
    competing to supplant her.

    Anger, Denial and Pride. Damned if they do, and damned if they don’t.

    For there is no father’s voice. They live off the Ummah, “The Community.” Everyone is watched for their good and bad.

    Except, for the voice calling in the wilderness.

    Such are conversations of life.

    There are now new reports about the risk of potential “future” inflammatory / fibrotic
    lung diseases – these substances may also be highly carcinogenic.

    Health Canada, has issued a warning about blue / grey disposable face masks, which contain an asbestos-like substance associated with early pulmonary toxicity. Health Canada discovered during a preliminary risk assessment that masks contain a microscopic graphene particles that, when, inhaled could cause severe lung damage. Plastic fibre inhalation-outcome could be devastating – – plastic over time will degrade very slowly and build up in our lungs.

    Reused cloth masks do produce more loosened fibres. Dr Richard Urso showed just how dangerous these masks are by putting them under a microscope revealing the melt-brown polypropylene plastic. Some mask even contain fibreglass.

    An American Medical Association publication
    “Face masks should not be worn by healthy individuals to protect themselves from acquiring respiratory infections because there is NO evidence to suggest that face masks worn by healthy individuals are effective in preventing people from becoming ill.

    Sprays and hand sanitizers.
    The CDC – studies show “in most situations the risk of infection from touching a surface is low. The risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection via the fomite transmission route is low, generally less than 1 in 10,000.

    Linsey Marr, an expert on airborne viruses at Virginia Tech
    “There is NO evidence that anyone has ever gotten COVID by touching a contaminated surface. We have known this for a long time and yet people are STILL focusing so much on surface cleaning.

    Many scientists, and doctors who have studied viruses for most of their life have stated that the new vaccines are not vaccines, they are genetic engineering, they have NEVER been used in humans before.

    “People should be warned when they get the vaccine, they will become a genetically modified organism, that will be making a virus protein as well as their own human protein. Virus triggers an antibody response that normally happens over a 2 week period. The antibody response will now activate and realize that this viral protein is in every cell in your body. antibodies will start attacking our cells and organs. People will go into septic shock, and then organs will fail.”

    There are many drugs out there to treat COVID.
    If you are overweight, lose your extra pounds.
    Take Vitamin B, C, D and zinc.
    Go for a walk and get some fresh air.
    Turn off CBC, CTV, Global, CNN and all the other propaganda stations.

    Call your member of parliament, municipal councils and health departments and DEMAND the masking and hand sanitizer nonsense stop. DO IT FOR THE CHILDREN.

    Never surrender to this global madness.. Stay safe, trust in God not your government.

  4. Chinese company releases ‘robot dog army’ video, makes people think about the end of humanity

    Good boys? Bad boys? Or intent-on-global-domination boys?

    Chinese company Unitree Robotics tweeted a video showing an ‘army’ of its black robotic dogs moving in unison to the Imperial March from Star Wars (we’ve had to alter the music for Disney copyright reasons).

    ‘The Force Awakens. Everyone, help count how many?’ it wrote.
    Its marketing team may have misread the room because, rather than marveling at the engineering, people commented more on the end-of-humanity vibes.

    Unitree tried to row back on this by releasing a second video in which one of its other robot dogs – a much more colorful one – defeats its black dog in a bout of robot doggy wrestling before doing some cute somersaults.

    Which means what? That the only way to defeat robot dogs is to build more robot dogs?

    We’re screwed.

  5. Engaged at Warp Factor One: When submarines don’t mind being seen – Liberty Unyielding
    J.E. Dyer
    16-21 minutes

    Engaged at Warp Factor One: When submarines don’t mind being seen

    Israeli Dolphin submarine trains with special forces commandos. i24 video, YouTube

    The game has changed. The sense of that came home this week with a very informative sequence of events surrounding the re-initiation of “U.S.-Iran talks” (such as they are), and the attack on an Iranian “mother ship” supporting special operations in the Red Sea.

    The developments occurred simultaneously, for all intents and purposes. It was pretty clear they are tied together. What’s equally important is that in their nature, they are of a piece with the other major developments in global geopolitics: the Russian build-up on Ukraine’s order, and China’s very purposeful bustling around Taiwan.

  6. Florida protesters burn face masks during rally against COVID measures

    Protesters burned face masks during an anti-COVID rules rally in Florida’s Fort Lauderdale. Some demonstrators were seen carrying signs with slogans against mask mandates and COVID vaccines.

  7. Denmark: “Men in Black” demonstrate against “corona pass” and mass testing

    Activists from the group ‘Men in Black’ demonstrated against the ‘corona pass’ programme and mass testing, in Copenhagen on Saturday.

    Protesters were seen lighting flares while marching with a large Danish flag.

    Denmark launched a new COVID-19 certificate required to enter certain businesses on Tuesday, becoming one of the first in Europe to introduce such a scheme.

    The ‘corona pass’ shows whether a person has been vaccinated, has tested positive in the past two to 12 weeks, or has tested negative in the previous 72 hours.

    • europravda – COVID-19: 20 arrested in anti-measures protests in Finland, Denmark & Norway

      The arrests were carried out in Helsinki. In Norway, protesters burned masks while demonstrators in Denmark criticised the launch of a “coronapas”.

  8. Study finds South African variant can ‘break through’ Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine

    The South African variant of the coronavirus can “break through” the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid vaccine, an Israeli study published on Saturday suggested.

    The real-world research compared about 800 people who had tested positive for the coronavirus, of whom about half had been vaccinated. It matched age and sex, among other characteristics.

    The B.1.351 South African strain made up about 1 per cent of all the cases across both groups….

    Among patients who had received two doses of the vaccine, the variant’s prevalence rate was eight times higher than in those who were unvaccinated, 5.4 per cent versus 0.7 per cent.

    This indicated the vaccine is less effective against the South African variant than it is against the original and UK strains of the virus, the researchers said.

    “We found a disproportionately higher rate of the South African variant among people vaccinated with a second dose compared to the unvaccinated group,” said Dr Adi Stern of Tel Aviv University.

    “This means that the South African variant is able, to some extent, to break through the vaccine’s protection.”

    The researchers said the study had only a small sample size of people infected with the South African variant because of its rarity in Israel.

    They also said the research was not intended to deduce overall vaccine effectiveness against any variant because it looked only at people who had already tested positive, not at overall infection rates.…

    They cited updated trial data that included participants inoculated for up to six months.

    In respect to the South African variant, they said that among a group of 800 study volunteers in South Africa, where B.1.351 is widespread, there were nine cases, all of which occurred among participants who had received the placebo.…

    “Even if the South African variant does break through the vaccine’s protection, it has not spread widely through the population,” she said.

    The British variant may be “blocking” the spread of the South African one… [ VIRAL INTERFERENCE ]</code]

    • [ VIRAL interference or CHY-NA interference?? ]</code]

      Human rhinovirus infection blocks SARS-CoV-2 replication within the respiratory epithelium: implications for COVID-19 epidemiology

      Virus-virus interactions influence the epidemiology of respiratory infections. However, the impact of viruses causing upper respiratory infections on SARS-CoV-2 replication and transmission is currently unknown.

      Human rhinoviruses cause the common cold and are the most prevalent respiratory viruses of humans. Interactions between rhinoviruses and co-circulating respiratory viruses have been shown to shape virus epidemiology at the individual host and population level.

      Here, we examined the replication kinetics of SARS-CoV-2 in the human respiratory epithelium in the presence or absence of rhinovirus. We show that human rhinovirus triggers an interferon response that blocks SARS-CoV-2 replication. Mathematical simulations show that this virus-virus interaction is likely to have a population-wide effect as an increasing prevalence of rhinovirus will reduce the number of new COVID-19 cases.

      The Journal of Infectious Diseases, 2021;jiab147

      • (Link for the article above: )
        Coronavirus: How the common cold can boot out Covid

        Some viruses are known to compete in order to be the one that causes an infection. And University of Glasgow scientists say it appears cold-causing rhinovirus trumps coronavirus. The benefits might be short-lived but rhinovirus is so widespread, they add, it could still help to suppress Covid.

        Think of the cells in your nose, throat and lungs as being like a row of houses. Once a virus gets inside, it can either hold the door open to let in other viruses, or it can nail the door shut and keep its new home to itself. Influenza is one of the most selfish viruses around, and nearly always infects alone. Others, such as adenoviruses, seem to be more up for a houseshare.

        There has been much speculation about how the virus that causes Covid, known as Sars-CoV-2, would fit into the mysterious world of “virus-virus interactions”.

        The challenge for scientists is that a year of social distancing has slowed the spread of all viruses and made it much harder to study.…

        If rhinovirus and Sars-CoV-2 were released at the same time, only rhinovirus is successful. If rhinovirus had a 24-hour head start then Sars-CoV-2 does not get a look in. And even when Sars-CoV-2 had 24-hours to get started, rhinovirus boots it out.

        “Sars-CoV-2 never takes off, it is heavily inhibited by rhinovirus,” Dr. Pablo Murcia told BBC News. He added: “This is absolutely exciting because if you have a high prevalence of rhinovirus, it could stop new Sars-CoV-2 infections.”

        Similar effects have been seen before. A large rhinovirus outbreak may have delayed the 2009 swine flu pandemic in parts of Europe.

        Further experiments showed rhinovirus was triggering an immune response inside the infected cells, which blocked the ability of Sars-CoV-2 to make copies of itself.

        When scientists blocked the immune response, then levels of the Covid virus were the same as if rhinovirus was not there.

        However, Covid would be able to cause an infection again once the cold had passed and the immune response calmed down.…

        Exactly how all this settles down in future winters is still unknown. Coronavirus is likely to still be around, and all the other infections that have been suppressed during the pandemic could bounce back as immunity to them wanes….
        Kids catch colds and flu more easily than adults. They’re the biggest transmission vector, from school to home. Most adults have considerable natural immunity, so no big deal.

        Maybe if we had been living normally this past year, viral interference would’ve reduced the incidence of Wuhan Covid.

    • Variants circulating now might be BLOCKING this So. African flavor. For a while.
      Then, the fully Pfizer-vaxxed seem to be 8 times MORE likely to catch the latest suckers.

      “In other words, it’s possible that someone who has already been infected with an earlier strain of the coronavirus could be [or is MORE LIKELY to be??] reinfected by a variant with this mutation and that the mutation may enable the coronavirus to evade antibodies generated by COVID vaccines.”

  9. Students protest plan to stage Sartre’s classic ‘No Exit’ play: ‘it doesn’t allow us to feel safe’

    A petition has been launched against Western Washington University Department of Theatre’s decision to showcase the existentialist play “No Exit” this fall.

    The petition argues the script is problematic because it gender stereotypes women and lesbians and puts a man in a quasi-leadership role, which perpetuates patriarchy.

    “When choosing a play for the upcoming season, there seemed to be a blind spot: gender and sexuality were not considered,” the petition states. “We understand that this is a piece that is meant to challenge us as a department, but this play is not challenging if it doesn’t allow us to feel safe.”

    The petition also argues the play is inappropriate at this time because it is set in one room in which the characters cannot escape, thus may be too “mentally taxing for the community to watch. Especially if we are still in quarantine at that time.”

    “This play is not challenging, but instead is reinforcing classical notions of womanhood designed by the patriarchy,” the petition states, adding “it is disturbing and unacceptable.”

    “No Exit” is a play by French philosopher and existentialist Jean-Paul Sartre. Penned in 1944, it’s about three people trapped in a room, and as they spend more time in it they come to realize that being trapped in eternity with the same three people is hell as opposed to fire and brimstone.

    The play’s most famous line — “Hell is other people” — comes toward the end when the male character realizes this:

    “What? Only two of you? I thought there were more; many more. [Laughs.] So this is hell. I’d never have believed it. You remember all we were told about the torture-chambers, the fire and brimstone, the ‘burning marl.’ Old wives’ tales! There’s no need for red-hot pokers. Hell is — other people!”

    What concerns the activists at Western Washington University is the plot that surrounds the three main characters. One woman, Estelle, pines for the man’s affection, named Garcin. The other woman, a lesbian named Inez, seeks comfort from Estelle, but is rebuffed.

    “The stereotype surrounding Inez is inaccurate and extremely harmful and perpetuates abusive ideals around lesbian-identifying individuals,” the petition states. “This [is] the wrong kind of queer representation that is very hurtful to LGBTQ+ people in the student theatre community.”

    The play includes unwanted sexual advances, another concern listed in the petition.

    “Plays with depictions of sexual harassment or unwelcome sexual advances are harmful and may reignite feelings of trauma within audience member and students that are watching/working on this piece,” it states.

    A dozen students worked together to author a six-page petition explaining why the department should ditch the play. The effort is headed up by WWU theatre student Katie Ginther.

    “Gender stereotyping and sexuality stereotyping is just not needed,” Ginther told The College Fix in an interview. She said the play is based upon the idea that women “need men,” but, “we don’t,” Ginther said with a chuckle.

    Asked about the timing of staging a play set in what amounts to eternal quarantine during an actual pandemic, Ginther said that “no matter what time we are in, we don’t need a play like this anymore.”

    Ginther is no stranger to petitions. She was involved in a lengthy list of demands pertaining to combating systemic racism within the Western Washington University theatre department in 2020, which she shared with The Fix.

    Asked if the “No Exit” petition is reflective of the entire WWU theatre department, Ginther replied in saying “Yeah, it definitely is.” Not only that, there is “no backlash” from anyone in the department about the prospect of re-evaluating or replacing the play, she said.

    Ginther said she was encouraged by the theater department chair to launch the petition and “see what the response of the students and audience members were.”

    It has garnered nearly 200 signatures so far and it is unclear if the show will go on, there has been a delay in the verdict due to spring break, Ginther said.

    Currently, there have been no castings or auditions held for the play but it remains on the listing as part of the 2021-22 WWU theatrical season. The website notes the line up was created from “student suggestions and faculty discussion.”

    If the play is produced after all, Ginther said she personally “will support students that choose to be in the play.”

    The petition does suggest many alternative plays to “No Exit,” but notes that if it is put on it should include a trigger warning for the audience and sensitivity training for those involved in the production.

    It also calls for “a female and LGBTQ+ led panel before or after the play that is REQUIRED for all audience members to attend.” [Emphasis in the original].

    Western Washington University’s media affairs department did not respond to requests from The College Fix seeking comment.

  10. sky news UK – Mozambique: How a massacre unfolded

    ( 14 min 33 )

    More than two weeks on from the Islamic attack in the town of Palma in Mozambique, around 20-thousand people remain unaccounted for.

    The country’s authorities have sent hundreds of soldiers into the town and have declared it free of jihadists, but the situation remains precarious.

    Muslim extremists known as al Shabab say they carried out the attack, though the group has no identifiable leader or ideology.

  11. Maxime Bernier’s tour of region ‘frustrating’ for Interior Health’s top doctor

    VERNON (NEWS 1130) — Interior Health’s top doctor says he’s monitoring Maxime Bernier’s tour of the region, worried that the People’s Party of Canada leader is inviting people to join him in “fighting against draconian lockdowns.”

    British Columbia is not currently locked down. Restrictions on gathering, indoor fitness, religious services, and indoor dining are in place, but schools and many businesses remain open.

    There is nothing prohibiting Bernier from travelling to B.C. from Quebec during the COVID-19 pandemic, but federal and provincial guidelines advise against non-essential, interprovincial travel.

    Dr. Albert de Villiers says it’s difficult to watch these guidelines being ignored as daily case counts climb in this province and across the country.

    “They’re putting people at risk. It’s very frustrating because we know our hospitalizations have gone up across the province. You’ve seen the numbers. Our cases have increased,” he says.

    “I think as a society, it should be frustrating for all of us and it does take a lot of time from everybody.”

    Despite an online video in which Bernier mentions holding “rallies,” de Villers says isn’t aware that Bernier has defied the provincial health order banning gatherings.

    “We have been made aware of this and there is currently some orders that prohibit these things, and if the rules get broken we would look into that.”

    Bernier made stops in Pentiction, Kelowna, and Kamloops before wrapping up his tour in Vernon Saturday.

    On social media, Bernier has posted pictures of him posing maskless with small crowds of supporters outdoors. He has also posted about meeting with a Kelowna pastor who has been fined for violating B.C.’s ban on indoor, in-person worship. Bernier is set to be in Vancouver on Saturday.

    Bernier describes his message as “speaking on our values, our Canadian traditional values of freedom and personal responsibility.”

  12. US warns of ‘consequences’ if Russia acts ‘aggressively’ in Ukraine

    Blinken warned in an interview Sunday of ‘consequences’ if Russia acts ‘aggressively’ towards Ukraine, amid rising alarm over a Russian troop build-up on the border of the former Soviet republic

    “I have to tell you I have real concerns about Russia’s actions on the borders of Ukraine,” Blinken told NBC’s “Meet the Press.” “That’s why we’re in very close contact, in close coordination, with our allies and partners in Europe. All of us share that concern.”

    Biden’s been very clear about this. If Russia acts recklessly, or aggressively, there will be costs, there will be consequences,” Blinken said.

    In recent weeks fighting has intensified between Ukraine’s army and pro-Russian separatists in the country’s east, with signs of a Russian troop build-up in the region raising concerns of major escalation in the long-running conflict.

    Ukraine has accused Russia of amassing thousands of military personnel on its northern and eastern borders as well as on the annexed Crimean peninsula.

    The Kremlin, which has not denied the troop movements, said Sunday it was not moving towards war with Ukraine — but also that it “will not remain indifferent” to the fate of Russian speakers in the conflict-torn region.

    The White House this week said the number of Russian troops at the border with Ukraine was now greater than at any time since 2014, when the conflict erupted after Russia’s annexation of Crimea from Ukraine.

    The conflict in Ukraine’s east has claimed more than 13,000 lives and turned into a nagging problem in Moscow’s relations with the West.

    • twitter @MeetThePress

      Blinken – “The question is, ‘Is Russia going to continue to act aggressively and recklessly?’ If it does, the president’s been clear, there’ll be costs, there’ll be consequences.”


      Zakharova’s Remarks On Zelensky’s Dombass Trip

      The Russian diplomat claims that hypothetical membership in the NATO would, contrary to Kiev’s expectations, not bring peace to Ukraine but would result in a large-scale escalation in its southeast and may lead to irreversible consequences for Ukrainian statehood.

      Moscow are calling on the Kiev authorities yet again to act responsibly and start implementing their obligations under the Minsk Package of Measures.

      This package is the programme approved by the international community which should bring peace to Ukraine as a whole and to its Donbass region.

      No illusions, fantasies or provocations are needed. If Kiev declares its wish and desire to establish peaceful life, this should be done.

      The plan is on the table for a long time now.

  13. Revealed: ISIS central command’s links to Mozambique and terror across Africa

    ISIS attacks in Mozambique are probably being co-ordinated with the terrorist group’s core leadership as part of an expanding campaign across Africa, security analysts told The National.

    Experts believe there is an organised propaganda campaign across the continent to amplify the extremist group’s standing and support….

    It appears the focus of ISIS has now shifted from the Middle East to Africa and in particular the troubled West African state of Mali, in the Sahel region, where in December 300 British troops arrived as part of a 15,000-strong UN force.

    The troops hope to stabilise the increasing violence in Mali as ISIS seeks to control the Sahel in what has become a protracted conflict. It is a grim portend for Mozambique.…

    Suspected ‘triangle of influence’
    In the quest for conclusive proof of a structural relationship between Mozambique insurgents and ISIS headquarters, Dr Winter said research highlighted a “triangle of influence” between Somalia, Mozambique and the Democratic Republic of Congo. “Various incidents point towards a flow of individuals, weapons and expertise and ideology between those three places,” he said.

    He believes it is debatable whether the insurgents are pursuing ISIS’s global extremist agenda or a local political one that “has been exaggerated”, although there is certainly evidence of some level of co-ordination with ISIS central….

    While other analysts admit there is a link between Mozambique and ISIS central, some argue that a local insurgency is operating “under an ISIS flag of convenience” to justify their brutal ends.

    “It provides excellent propaganda opportunity for ISIS central but the majority of what’s happening in northern Mozambique is driven by local grievances,” said Dr Alex Vines, of the Chatham House London think tank….

    Dr Vines said there was clear evidence that Mozambique fighters were given military training from extremists in eastern Congo, particularly in the use of mortars that were effective in the Palma attack. Going from using machetes in 2017 to accurate bombardments within four years was a demonstration of ISIS’s progress in Mozambique…

  14. Ramadan 2021: Dubai restaurants can serve food without screens or curtains

    Food outlets in Dubai are not required to serve food out of public view during fasting hours this year.

    Dubai’s Department of Economic Development (Dubai Economy) announced the decision on Sunday.

    Screens and curtains that were previously used, particularly in malls, are no longer needed.

    “Restaurants will be allowed to serve customers without putting in place curtains, dividers or facades as has been the mandatory practice previously,” the authority said.

    “Restaurants are also not required to obtain a permit for serving food to customers during Ramadan fasting hours.

    “The new circular replaces circulars issued in previous years that have required restaurants to block dining areas from the sight of those who are fasting.”

    In the past, food and beverage outlets, including bars and restaurants in hotels, would remain closed until the fast was broken at sunset.

    In recent years, those restrictions were lifted and food outlets typically remained open throughout the day. Even licensed premises and bars can open, as long as they ensure patrons are respectful, there is no live music and entertainment is kept to a minimum.

  15. Son of ISIS fighter given Irish passport back following legal challenge

    The eight-year-old son of a suspected ISIS fighter has won his Irish passport back after authorities effectively stripped him of his citizenship.

    Abdul Malik Bekmirzaev, who was born in Ireland, is currently living in Belarus with his mother after being deported there from Turkey in January 2020.

    The High Court in Dublin has now ruled his full citizenship rights be restored following a lengthy legal battle, reports The Sunday Times.

    Abdul had been brought to Islamist-controlled areas of Syria by his parents as an infant in 2014, but was later held in Kurdish prison camps before being detained in Turkey….

    Authorities claimed his Abdul’s father Alexandr Bekmirzaev had his Irish naturalisation certificate revoked as his previous marriage to a British citizen was a “sham”.

    The boy was therefore effectively stripped of his Irish citizenship because it was based on his father’s prior naturalisation.

    Alexandr Bekmirzaev, a convert to Islam, is a suspected ISIS fighter and travelled to an Islamist-controlled area of Syria in 2013. The family were reunited in 2014 and lived there until the fall of the so-called ‘caliphate’ in 2018.

    Mr Bekmirzaev was previously held at a Syrian Democratic Forces prison for Isis fighters in eastern Syria. It is not know if he is still alive.

    Wendy Lyon, a solicitor who represented the boy, said the case raises “troubling questions” about the conduct of Irish authorities….

  16. UK study says far right copies tactics of religious extremists

    Extremist groups are at risk of engaging in a cycle of escalatory violence in which religious extremists and the far right embrace “the same tools and tactics”, a study by UK radicalisation experts said.

    Far-right groups, it said, have increasingly mimicked religious extremists’ methods and stolen their tactics.

    Researchers from the International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation and Political Violence at King’s College London examined the concept of reciprocal radicalisation, which sees extremist groups feed off each other.

    The report said it would be a mistake to treat the threats separately.

    “Policymakers have reason to be concerned that the co?presence of far?right and radical Islamist groups could aggravate social cleavages and lead to an escalation in violence or rhetoric from one or both groups,” said the report, titled Innovation, Creativity and the Interplay Between Far?right and Islamist Extremism.

  17. 35 years after El Al bomb plot, security staff recount stopping unwitting bomber

    On April 17, 1986, an El Al flight from London to Tel Aviv was the target of a bombing plot that could have killed everyone on board, including the unsuspecting pregnant woman carrying the explosives. Thirty-five years later, two of the security officers that foiled the attack spoke of their experience in a television interview that aired Friday.…

    The bomb was made up of 1.5 kilograms of explosives, set on an automatic timer to explode mid-air on the Boeing plane as it carried some 370 people.…

    Fascinating story.

  18. Germany to amend law for nationwide COVID-19 response: official

    Germany would amend its infection protection act to “regulate on a nationwide basis” what restrictions would apply when local seven-day COVID-19 incidence exceeded 100 per 100,000 citizens, deputy government spokesperson Ulrike Demmer said Friday.

    Demmer told a press conference that it was not yet clear how quickly the change in the law would be implemented, but it would be done “as quickly as possible.”

    In the past, Germany’s COVID-19 response has been characterized by regional differences as the ultimate legal power lay with the country’s federal states. Although Chancellor Angela Merkel and the state governments agreed on an emergency brake in case of a seven-day incidence above 100, not all states reacted accordingly in recent weeks.

    Earlier on Friday, Minister of Health Jens Spahn and the president of the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) Lothar Wieler warned that the COVID-19 situation in Germany was serious as the number of patients in intensive care units was rising rapidly.

    Despite the ongoing lockdown and the country’s vaccination campaign, new infections rose sharply again. Germany recorded 25,464 new cases within one day on Friday, around 3,500 more than on the same day last week.

    The seven-day incidence rose from around 105.7 per 100,000 citizens on Thursday to 110.4, according to the RKI.

    Spahn appealed for uniform nationwide measures.

    “I recommend that we all tone down the party squabbling, election year or not, and concentrate on the essentials, fighting the pandemic,” he said during a press conference.


    reuters – German far-right AfD bids to win back voters with anti-lockdown campaign

    BERLIN (Reuters) – Germany’s far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) cast itself as the anti-lockdown party at a weekend conference in a bid to win back support before for a September election.

    Almost 600 members of the party, which entered the national parliament for the first time after the 2017 election, met in the eastern city of Dresden despite coronavirus restrictions to agree an election manifesto, including a call to leave the European Union.

    Dogged by internal divisions over how radical the party should be, it has dipped to around 11% in polls from nearly 13% in the 2017 election when it was the third biggest party and became the official parliamentary opposition.

    During the pandemic the AfD has been linked with coronavirus deniers and opposed compulsory vaccinations – which the government has never proposed. Some AfD members have joined anti-lockdown demonstrations.

    “The AfD wants to show these orgies of prohibition, this imprisonment, this lockdown madness, that there is no need for this,” co-leader Joerg Meuthen told the conference.

    Delegates backed a coronavirus resolution with the slogan “Germany. But normal”, which includes rejecting wearing masks in day-care centres and schools and ending “disproportionate” lockdown measures.

    Germany is struggling to contain a third wave of the pandemic and polls show a majority backs restrictions.

    Angela Merkel’s government is drawing up a law to impose nationwide measures to avoid a confusing patchwork of rules which are not consistently implemented.

    AfD delegates also backed a call for Germany to leave the EU and set up a new European community of economies and interests.

    Set up in 2013 as an anti-euro party during the euro zone debt crisis, the party has shifted to the right and capitalised on voter anger over Merkel’s 2015 open-door migrant policy. It has called for border controls and a ban on minarets.

    Its tough line on migration led some conservatives to shift to the right but since entering parliament, the AfD has had little impact on policy. All mainstream parties refuse to cooperate with it.

  19. Turkish-backed Syrian rebel group holds ‘graduation’ for new fighters

    Syrian fighters fire weapons, rappel down buildings and stage mock raids during a graduation ceremony for new recruits joining the Samarkand Brigade, part of the First Legion of the Turkish-backed Syrian National Army in Afrin in northern Syria.

  20. Biden brings out Obama’s echo chamber, puts Israel on defense – opinion

    In March 2012, unnamed US diplomats and military intelligence officials exposed IDF and Mossad activities in Azerbaijan, a Muslim country that borders Iran. “The Israelis have bought an airfield,” a senior administration official was quoted as telling Foreign Policy magazine, “and the airfield is called Azerbaijan.”

    This Obama-administration orchestrated leak – the “outing” of Israel’s covert capabilities in Azerbaijan – was meant to scuttle the possibility of an Israeli air strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities from former Soviet air bases near Baku, only 500 km. from Tehran. Of course, Azerbaijan was forced to deny any Israeli presence and then scale back whatever intelligence or military basing Israel had there.

    It was an ugly and underhanded move by the Obama administration.

    This was followed by the “Bibi-sitting project,” a hand-holding exercise that saw senior American officials visiting Israel every month to keep tabs on the Netanyahu government’s thinking and planning, and to reassure Israel that Washington was taking Israel’s security interests into account. It wasn’t. It was babysitting Israel (“Bibi-sitting”) to make sure that Israel did not interfere with Obama’s rotten accord-making with Iran.

    As the contours of the controversial Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) nuclear deal with Iran later emerged, the Obama administration launched a hostile whispering campaign about Israel and its Jewish allies in the US (orchestrated by then-president Obama’s aide, deputy national security adviser Ben Rhodes).

    Israel was standing in the way of an “amicable nuclear deal” with Iran and “dragging the US into war” – it was alleged. American Jews, Republicans, and others opposed to the soft deal with Iran were accused of disloyalty to America; of favoring Israeli interests over crucial US security interests.

    The pro-Iran-deal chorus was mobilized to repeat these messages. Rhodes himself braggingly highlighted the “echo chamber” he created for this purpose, which encompassed journalists, left-wing think tanks, and other opinion leaders. Rhodes boasted that he snowed the “know nothing” media and the American public with a misleading narrative about the timeline of Washington’s negotiations with Tehran and other key facets of the deal….

    ALAS, IT SEEMS that the Biden administration is using the same playbook to sideline Israel in the context of Washington’s current talks with Iran to reengage the JCPOA….

    • Joe Biden crawls back to the Iran nuclear drawing board – opinion

      IN HER daily briefing on Tuesday, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki perfectly exhibited the administration’s floundering on this issue. When questioned by a reporter about US leverage in the negotiations with Iran, other than the threat of war, she stumbled.

      “What it – what would Iran want out of it? Is that what you’re asking?” she replied, either genuinely puzzled or stalling to come up with a rational response in the absence of one.

      “No,” the reporter answered. “I’m saying, ‘What’s the stick?’ You’re coming with a carrot, right? Which is, you know, ‘We’ll bring you back in and so on if you dismantle all this stuff.’ And, you know, ‘We’ll eventually give you sanctions relief.’ That’s pretty clear. But they withstood the sanctions under the Trump administration. And, you know – and they – the effect only increased the activity in the nuclear field. So, what – what is left?”

      Taking a breath, Psaki explained, “Well, if you… go back historically, just a few years before the Trump administration, to the Obama-Biden administration, sanctions were put in place which incentivize, in many ways, getting them to the table to have the discussion about the Joint Plan of Action.

      “So, look, I would say at this point: Today is the first day of discussions… and they are happening through our European counterparts and partners. We expect them to have difficult portions [sic]. We expect this to be a long process. And we, you know, continue to believe that a diplomatic path is the right path forward, and there are benefits to all sides.”

      She concluded by accusing Biden’s predecessor of making matters worse.

      “When the Trump administration pulled out of the Joint Plan of Action, what they left us with is a far-decreased visibility of Iran’s nuclear capability, of inspections at their sites, of an understanding of how close they were to acquiring a nuclear weapon,” she asserted. “That’s not in anyone’s interest, certainly not [that of] the American people.”

      In other words, despite acknowledgment that Iran was lying about its nuclear program being “peaceful,” and allowing for clauses in the JCPOA that enabled Tehran to perpetuate the deception, former president Barack Obama and then-second-in-command Biden obsessively pushed for the deal anyway. Now that Biden is in charge, things are no different.

      His appointment of Robert Malley as special envoy to Iran means picking up where Obama left off and then some. Malley, who left his position as head of the International Crisis Group NGO to accept the post, was a key negotiator of the JCPOA in the first place. Nobody could be better suited for the job of appeasing the ayatollahs than the “conflict resolution” addict who advocates engagement with Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood.

        • Yes, very depressing.
          It punctuates what we’ve known for a while: the paradigm has changed.

          We hear recycled cliches coming from what appears to be our government, while others are running the table.

          We’ve been had.
          Europe is cooked, too.
          We’ve been incited to fight each other by masters of information warfare, literally tearing each other apart for the delectation of our enemies.

          But J.E. commented elsewhere:
          From great upheavals come the greatest opportunities. There’s much that needs a “good reset” for America and the world, and we are not nearly as dead as we look. Opportunity is what we lack at the moment.

          We’re paralyzed under a brittle surface layer – the food source for the parasitical “Deep State” – that needs breaking off.
          No one is nearly as much in charge of the coming upheaval as he thinks.…

  21. Maryland Becomes First State to Repeal Police Bill of Rights
    By Ivan Pentchoukov
    April 11, 2021 Updated: April 11, 2021
    biggersmaller Print

    Maryland’s Democrat-controlled General Assembly on Saturday voted to override Republican Gov. Larry Hogan’s vetoes on three major police reform measures, which included the repeal of the state’s police bill of rights.

    Maryland was the first state in the nation to adopt the Law Enforcement Officers Bill of Rights in 1974. Twenty states have followed suit since, but Maryland is the first to revoke its measure. The bill of rights had set forth a due process procedure for probing police misconduct.

    Supporters of Maryland’s reforms say they are needed to increase accountability and restore public trust. One of the measures repeals job protections in the police disciplinary process, which critics said impeded accountability. A newly enacted measure gives civilians a role in the disciplinary process.

  22. sky news Australia – Law protects GPs rolling out AstraZeneca vaccines: Greg Hunt

    Health Minister Greg Hunt says the legal advice from the Morrison government is general practitioners will be protected from unreasonable legal action over possible AstraZeneca side effects.

    His comments follow revelations doctors were refusing to offer the AstraZeneca vaccine to people under 50 fearing potential lawsuits if patients suffered side effects.

    Mr Hunt said, “Australia already has vaccine indemnity agreements in place. The AMA and college of general practitioners have clear advice in writing from the government to that effect”.

    He also said updated informed consent material was in place so “no doctor should worry” about the risk of litigation associated with administering the AstraZeneca vaccine.

    • sky news Australia – Aussie doctors refusing to offer AstraZeneca vaccines over legal concerns

      Many doctors are refusing to offer the AstraZeneca vaccine to people under 50 fearing potential lawsuits if patients suffer side effects.

      The Sydney Morning Herald reports doctors are seeking legal clarification from the federal government saying they face a dangerous risk of litigation.

    • sky news Australia – ‘No doctor need worry’: Hunt alleviates fears over AstraZeneca litigation

      Doctors have been reassured they are protected by law if a patient experiences an adverse reaction to the AstraZeneca vaccine.

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