Reader’s Links for February 23, 2022

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

58 Replies to “Reader’s Links for February 23, 2022”

        • FEB 23 2022 – DT chosen to help create global health passport

          Among the many precedents set by the Covid pandemic is the requirement to be vaccinated before you’re allowed to travel and that’s set to become a global standard.

          The World Heath Organization, which had such a great pandemic, wants to ‘facilitate’ its 194 member states to introduce digital vaccination certificates. To do so it’s setting up a ‘gateway’ to standardize the issuing of QR codes that confer privileged health status to their owner. Deutsche Telekom subsidiary T-Systems has been chosen as an industry partner to develop the vaccination validation services.

          “Corona has a grip on the world,” said Adel Al-Saleh, CEO of T-Systems. “Digitization keeps the world running. Digital vaccination certificates like the EU’s are key to this. We are pleased to be able to support the WHO in the fight against the pandemic. Health is a strategic growth area for T-Systems. Winning this contract underscores our commitment to the industry.”

          Such assertions would have carried more weight a year ago but, with the UK ending all Covid-related restrictions and many other countries headed in that direction, this renewed zeal for the mandating of vaccines proven to have limited efficacy is baffling. It’s almost as if organizations like the WHO are reluctant to relinquish the massive increase in their power the pandemic conferred.

          “COVID-19 affects everyone,” asserted Gerrett Mehl, Unit Head, WHO Department of Digital Health and Innovation. “Countries will therefore only emerge from the pandemic together. Vaccination certificates that are tamper-proof and digitally verifiable build trust. WHO is therefore supporting member states in building national and regional trust networks and verification technology. The WHO’s gateway service also serves as a bridge between regional systems. It can also be used as part of future vaccination campaigns and home-based records.”

          It will certainly affect everyone if the WHO has anything to do with it. T-Systems is already involved in a similar scheme devised by the EU, which is presumably why it got this gig. The WHO intends this system to apply to other vaccinations too, so it’s not even hiding the planned mission creep.

          A system like this could easily be adapted to attach other conditions to international travel, thus facilitating a global social credit system. Fun times.

    • MAY 2018 – Neil Parmenter, President and CEO of Canadian Bankers Association

      Read the CBA’s white paper: Canada’s Digital ID Future – A Federated Approach:

      We’re living in a digital world but we’re tethered to an analog model of how we identify ourselves.

      Digital ID is a way for Canadians to identify themselves to government, businesses and each other electronically, with ease and rock-solid security, reducing serial bureaucracy and the need to present physical documents when doing business with the public and private sector.

      We believe Canada would benefit most from a federated digital ID model: one, interconnected network developed in collaboration with Canada’s best and brightest talent from our banks, telecommunications companies, law enforcement and government.

      + comments on the YT page

    • the conservative tree house- BOOM, Trudeau Reversal Motive Surfaces – Canadian Banking Association Was Approved by World Economic Forum To Lead the Digital ID Creation

      […]Without COVID-19, they can’t keep the vaccination push. Without the vaccination push, they can’t keep the vaccine passport process in place. Without the vaccination passport registration process to track and monitor human behavior, the governing authorities cannot fulfill the mission of a comprehensive digital identity and social credit tracking system. Indeed, everything they seek is contingent upon keeping the premise of COVID-19 alive.

      It is not accidental the World Economic Forum is at the epicenter of this

      As we previously noted, the architects of the Build Back Better society (WEF) are guiding various governments on ways to create efficient registration and compliance systems, i.e. ways that permit citizens to prove their vaccinated and compliant status. As these discussions are taking place, it is prudent to pause and think very carefully, wisely.

      […]For the western, or for lack of a better word ‘democratic‘ outlook, Australia, New Zealand, France and Europe are leading the way with their technological system of vaccination check points and registered state/national vaccination status tied to your registration identification.

      […]In Europe, they are also testing their vaccine checkpoint and registration processes known as the EU “Green Pass.”

      The “Green Pass” is a similar technological system that gives a vaccinated and registered citizen access to all the venues and locations previously locked down while the COVID-19 virus was being mitigated. What would have been called a “vast right-wing conspiracy theory” 24 months ago, is now a COVID passport process well underway.

      […]Give it a few weeks and you won’t remember the reason you were laughing at Alex Jones any more than you remember why you are taking off your shoes at the airport.

      However, as this process is created, it is worth considering that you are being quietly changed from an individual person to a product.

      […]Then again… “For those in the privileged class allowed to shop, take note of Covid signs which encourage cashless transactions under the guise of ‘health’. Messaging around cards being ‘safer’ will increase until the Treasury tries to remove cash entirely, almost certainly with public approval.”

      […]Yeah, that opaque shadow is getting a little clearer now.

      Perhaps you attempt to purchase dog food and get denied entry into Pet Smart because you didn’t renew the car registration. Or perhaps you are blocked from entry because you forgot to change the oil on the leased vehicle you drive, and Toyota has this weird agreement with some retail consortium. You head to the oil change place that conveniently pops up in the citizen compliance App –it’s only two blocks away– they clear the alert after they do the oil change, and you are gateway compliant again.

      Missed your booster shot? We’re sorry citizen, your bank account is frozen until your compliance is restored… please proceed to the nearest vaccination office as displayed conveniently on your cell phone screen to open access to all further gates (checkpoints)…. tap to continue!

      Vote for the wrong candidate? Attend, or donate to, a trucker protest?

      Yes, it seemed transparently obvious where this was heading, and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau just awakened the masses:

      MORE :

    • It will always be KIEV.

      Messing with the spelling is acceding to de-Russification extremist demands. Prez Zelensky is being pushed around by Uke oligarchs and a core of crazies. Think Burisma, Victoria Nuland, and the cabal that engineered PTrump’s impeachment.

      There are plenty of Russian-speaking Ukrainians living in Kiev who hope to stay right where they are. Zelensky, et al. are trying to tamp down hysteria generated by Western deep-state operators.

  1. The space between what governments show us with their mass media control, and what our own eyes see, is vast. Much of the population readily believes the narratives they are fed. It likely has little to do with levels of intelligence. Perhaps our perceptions are governed by how much television we watch, or by how we were raised, or by how disagreeable we are by nature. Whatever the reasons, millions of people currently watching the same events, and having vastly different interpretations, is a societal Grand Canyon:

  2. Apple Store kidnapper had explosives; Hostage is a Bulgarian man, 44
    Update 12:50 p.m. – The municipality of Amsterdam and police confirmed that the hostage was from Bulgaria, and not the United Kingdom as previously reported. They also confirmed that the perpetrator had explosives on him, but that the explosive material was not armed.
    The man held hostage in an Apple store in Amsterdam on Tuesday night is a 44-year-old man from Bulgaria. Overnight the police conducted “a lot of investigation” in the store on Leidseplein, a police spokeswoman said on Wednesday morning. The municipality of Amsterdam and police confirmed that the hostage-taker was carrying explosives on his body, but that the material was not yet armed when he was taken down.
    In a press conference during the early hours of Wednesday morning, Amsterdam police chief Frank Paauw praised the hostage’s actions. “He acted in a split second” and got away from the perpetrator. “Had he not done that, it could have been a very nasty and long night.” Paauw said that the victim is not an employee of the Apple Store.
    The hostage situation lasted for hours on Tuesday evening and ended when the hostage managed to get away. That happened when the hostage-taker, a 27-year-old man from Amsterdam, asked the police for water at around 10:30 p.m. The police used a robot to take a bottle of water to the store. The hostage had to get it, likely under gunpoint, and took that opportunity to run away, according to AD. The hostage-taker chased after the hostage. Once outside, the police hit the Amsterdam man with a car. The police took about 70 people to safety during the hostage crisis.
    Police union ACP is impressed with how the police handled the situation. “It shows the decisive and brave action of the police officer who eliminated the running suspect,” spokesperson Maarten Brink said to AD. “In this situation, it proved crucial not to doubt, but to act. The way the police acted yesterday, and the officer in the police car, in particular, shows that we can be proud of our police. They step forward, even at the risk of their own lives, to protect the lives of others.”
    The police could not say anything about the suspect’s condition. He was taken to hospital with critical injuries. The spokesperson also could not say how the British man was doing after spending so long held at gunpoint. The police also refused to give any new information about the two homes they searched in Amsterdam or about the “bomb vest” the hostage-taker was allegedly wearing.
    During the hostage situation, the hostage-taker himself contacted the police and demanded 200 million euros in cryptocurrency and a safe exit from the property. He threatened to blow himself up and sent a photo to regional broadcaster AT5 showing that he was wearing what appeared to be a bomb vest.
    A total of four holes and cracks can be seen in the Apple Store’s windows on Wednesday morning. The suspect had an automatic weapon and a handgun on him, according to the police. He fired the automatic weapon at least four times at the police when they arrived at the scene on Tuesday evening.

  3. Footage of the end of the hostage situation in Amsterdam.
    Hostage taker asks for water, which is dropped off by a robot. He gets the hostage to pick it up, but he makes a run for it. The hostage taker chases him and is rammed by a police SUV.
    it looks like he fell unconscious. Note the lasers aimed at his motionless body, snipers had him in their sights.
    He was taken to hospital by ambulance.

    • AMAZING Clip! 1. A whiter shade of Pale is one of the greatest rock ballads of all time. (Playing in the background at the start) 2. We learn that the Dutch, when they really want to swear effectively, use English. (Much like when you want to be sarcastic many people switch to Yiddish)

      And I just started it!

  4. reuters – Iceland to lift all COVID-19 restrictions on Friday

    COPENHAGEN, Feb 23 (Reuters) – Iceland will lift all remaining COVID-19 restrictions on Friday, including a 200-person indoor gathering limit and restricted opening hours for bars, the Ministry of Health said on Wednesday.

    “Widespread societal resistance to COVID-19 is the main route out of the epidemic,” the ministry said in a statement, citing infectious disease authorities.

    “To achieve this, as many people as possible need to be infected with the virus as the vaccines are not enough, even though they provide good protection against serious illness,” it added.

    All border restrictions would also be lifted, it said.

    Iceland, with a population of some 368,000 people, has registered between 2,100 and 2,800 daily infections recently. More than 115,000 infections have been logged throughout the epidemic and 60 have died due to COVID-19.

  5. DAILY MAIL – Female World Cup official flees Qatar to avoid a sentence of 100 lashes and seven years in jail for ‘extramarital sex’ after reporting that she was RAPED

    Paola Schietekat, 28, faces 100 lashes and seven years in jail for extramarital sex

    Mexican woman charged after she reported being raped while working in Qatar

    Lawyers told her she could possibly avoid a conviction by marrying her attacker

    The man, a colleague, allegedly broke into her apartment, threatening to kill her

    Schietekat, who has since left the Gulf state, was helping to organise World Cup

    […]Police then asked her to undergo a virginity test, accusing Schietekat of extramarital relations, before recommending the case to the public prosecutor’s office to bring charges against her.

  6. CBC – Quebec’s move to drop mask requirement in schools ‘a little too early,’ expert says

    Elementary and high school students in Quebec won’t need to wear masks in class when they return from March break.

    Respirologist Dr. Samir Gupta says the move is premature as the community spread of COVID-19 is still too high.

    + comments on the YT page

  7. twitter @disclosetv

    JUST IN – Large German health insurance company analyzed data from 10.9 million insured individuals regarding vaccination complications.

    The new data is “alarming,” says BKK board member Schöfbeck in a report by WELT.
    Mehr Impf-Nebenwirkungen als bisher bekannt

    Eine Analyse von Millionen Versichertendaten der Betriebskrankenkassen BKK kommt bei den Nebenwirkungen auf erheblich höhere Zahlen als das Paul-Ehrlich-Institut. Die neuen Daten seien ein „Alarmsignal“, sagt BKK-Vorstand Andreas Schöfbeck.

    Erstmals liegen zu Nebenwirkungen von Covid-Impfstoffen die Zahlen eines großen deutschen Krankenkassenverbands vor. Der Vorstand der BKK ProVita, Andreas Schöfbeck, hat die Daten von Millionen Versicherten der BKK-Gruppe analysieren lassen. Die Gesamtzahl der Nebenwirkungen liegt demnach um ein Vielfaches höher als die, die durch das Paul-Ehrlich-Institut (PEI) gemeldet werden. >/b>In einem Videotelefonat mit WELT sagte Schöfbeck am Mittwoch: „Die ermittelten Zahlen sind erheblich und müssen dringend plausibilisiert werden.“

    • medforth – BREAKING: German health insurance sounds the alarm: number of vaccination side effects actually 10 times higher

      An analysis of health insurance data now underlines the scepticism about the official figures on vaccination side effects. The health insurance company BBK ProVita sounds the alarm in a letter: “It would be ethically wrong not to talk about it”.

      By the end of 2021, the Paul Ehrlich Institute (PEI) had recorded around 245,000 vaccination side effects. But the actual number of these side effects is probably many times higher. At least, this is what the results of an analysis by the health insurance company BBK ProVita suggest, as reported by the newspaper Die Welt. They had become ” suspicious” when an increasing number of diagnoses suggested a vaccination side effect. Therefore, the databases of all BBK health insurance funds were checked. The data collection paints a completely different picture than the figures from the Ministry of Health.

      From January to August 2021, for example, around 217,000 of just under 11 million BBK policyholders had to be treated for vaccination side effects – while the Paul Ehrlich Institute only keeps 244,576 side effect reports based on 61.4 million vaccinated. “According to our calculations, we consider 400,000 visits to the doctor by our insured due to vaccination complications to date to be realistic,” Andreas Schöfbeck, BKK board member, told Die Welt. “Extrapolated to the total population, this figure would be three million.” Thus, the number of vaccination side effects would be more than 1000 per cent higher than the PEI reports.

      Schöfbeck mentions the reporting system as the main reason for the massive discrepancy. Doctors often have to report vaccination side effects in their spare time – a time-consuming activity that then remains unpaid. “It is simply impossible to report everything.”

      With his analysis, Schöfbeck turned to a wide range of institutions – from the German Medical Association to the StiKo and the Paul Ehrlich Institute itself. He said that the figures were a “strong alarm signal” which “absolutely must be taken into account in the further use of vaccines”.

      His figures could be validated by the same data analyses of other health insurance companies, he says. It is “ethically wrong not to talk about it”.

      Since ” risk to human life cannot be ruled out”, he set a deadline of 6pm on Tuesday to respond to his letter. As this was not possible, they turned to the public.

  8. CNN – PAULA NEWTON – Reporters covering the Covid-19 vaccine protests in Ottawa, Canada face near-constant harassment from protesters. CNN’s Paula Newton explains what she’s seen on the ground

  9. Vox Pravda – How American conservatives turned against the vaccine

    President Donald Trump presided over the fastest vaccine development process in history, leading to abundant, free vaccines in the US by the spring of 2021. Although the mRNA Covid-19 vaccines haven’t been able to stop transmission of the virus, they have been highly effective against hospitalization and death, saving hundreds of thousands of lives and rendering the majority of new Covid-19 deaths preventable.

    Trump has received three doses of the vaccine. But many of his most dedicated supporters have refused, and many have died as a result. Why? Obvious culprits include misinformation on social media and Fox News and the election of Joe Biden, which placed a Democrat at the top of the US government throughout the vaccine distribution period. But if you look closely at the data, you’ll see that vaccine-hesitant conservatives largely made up their mind well before the vaccines were available and before Donald Trump lost the 2020 election.

    To understand why, I took a deep dive into the data, interviewed researchers, and spoke to people who lost loved ones to preventable severe Covid-19 infections. What I found is a stark cautionary tale for the country and for Republican political elites. Partisan polarization takes on a life of its own; once set into motion it’s nearly impossible to stop, even when the fallout is immense and irreparable.

  10. CBC – Alberta throne speech greeted by hundreds of protesters

    Hundreds of protesters gathered outside the Alberta legislature ahead of the throne speech airing their frustration about COVID-19 restrictions, vaccine mandates and Premier Jason Kenney.

  11. global news – Prince Edward Island to eliminate use of vaccine passport for COVID-19 next week

    Prince Edward Island will discontinue use of its COVID-19 vaccine passport next week.

    Premier Dennis King says proof of vaccination won’t be required to access restaurants, bars, gyms and other venues as of Feb. 28.

    The province is also lifting on Feb. 28 the requirement for unvaccinated people arriving on the Island to self-isolate, but they will have to be tested for COVID-19 upon entry and on their second and fourth days in the province.

    “These are cautious and positive steps forward using the information we have gathered,” King told reporters Wednesday.

    “We’re in a good place. We’re moving forward safely and carefully. We are seeing our indicators on a good trajectory, and that is allowing us to move to the extent that we are,” he said.

    Masks will still be required in indoor public spaces, and limits remain on the size of gatherings.

    King and chief public health officer Dr. Heather Morrison both said while the pandemic is not over, the Island is in a good position because of the success of its vaccination campaign. “In particular 82 per cent of those 50 and over have gotten their third shot booster, which is an incredible number,” King said.

    Two people in the province are hospitalized as a result of COVID-19 and another two tested positive after being admitted for other reasons. As of Wednesday, the province had 2,316 active cases of the virus.

    The PEI Vax Pass program was implemented in early October during the peak of the Delta-driven wave of COVID-19 in Canada.

    “It was a time-limited measure that provided an extra layer of protection, allowing more people to gather safely while reducing the risk of outbreaks and associated hospitalizations,” Morrison said.

  12. the guardian – Almost 15,000 ‘ghost flights’ have left UK since pandemic began

    Exclusive: Thousands of near-empty planes flown since March 2020, new figures reveal

    The ghost flights, defined as those with no passengers or less than 10% of passenger capacity, operated from all 32 airports listed in the data. Heathrow was top, with 4,910 ghost flights between March 2020 and September 2021. Manchester and Gatwick were the next highest. There were an average of 760 ghost flights a month over the period, although the data covered only international departure and not domestic flights.

    Flying is one of the most carbon-intensive activities people can undertake and ghost flights have angered those campaigning for action on the climate crisis. The German airline Lufthansa recently warned it would have to fly 18,000 “unnecessary” flights by March in order to keep its landing slots at airports. Under current rules, airlines lose their valuable slots if they are not sufficiently used.

    However, during the pandemic-hit period covered by the new UK data, the rules that had required 80% of slots to be used were completely suspended. Airlines did not have to operate flights to retain the slots, but nonetheless flew 14,472 ghost flights.

    […]Tim Johnson at the Aviation Environment Federation said: “Information [on ghost flights] is hidden from public view, with airlines avoiding scrutiny by claiming the data is proprietary. No doubt airlines fear reputational damage, but the public and consumers should be informed. It shouldn’t take a parliamentary question to expose the scale of this wasteful practice.”


    GBNews – Almost 15,000 ‘ghost flights’ departing from the UK since the start of the Pandemic

  13. twitter @breakinge911

    BREAKING: Spokesperson says top Manhattan prosecutors investigating Donald Trump and his company in criminal probe have resigned – AP
    NYT – 2 Prosecutors Leading N.Y. Trump Inquiry Resign, Clouding Case’s Future

    The resignations came after the Manhattan district attorney, Alvin Bragg, was said to have expressed doubts about the case, and amid a monthlong pause in the presentation of evidence to a grand jury.

    The two prosecutors leading the Manhattan district attorney’s investigation into former President Donald J. Trump and his business practices abruptly resigned on Wednesday amid a monthlong pause in their presentation of evidence to a grand jury, according to people with knowledge of the matter. The stunning development comes not long after the high-stakes inquiry appeared to be gaining momentum, and throws its future into serious doubt.

    The prosecutors, Carey R. Dunne and Mark F. Pomerantz, submitted their resignations after the new Manhattan district attorney, Alvin Bragg, indicated to them that he had doubts about moving forward with a case against Mr. Trump, the people said.

    Mr. Pomerantz confirmed in a brief interview that he had resigned, but declined to elaborate. Mr. Dunne declined to comment.

    Without Mr. Bragg’s commitment to move forward, the prosecutors late last month postponed a plan to question at least one witness before the grand jury, one of the people said. They have not questioned any witnesses in front of the grand jury for more than a month, essentially pausing their investigation into whether Mr. Trump inflated the value of his assets to obtain favorable loan terms from banks.

    The precise reasons for Mr. Bragg’s pullback are unknown, and he has made few public statements about the status of the inquiry since taking office. In a statement responding to the resignations of the prosecutors, a spokeswoman for Mr. Bragg said that he was “grateful for their service” and that the investigation was ongoing.

    Time is running out for this grand jury, whose term is scheduled to expire in April. Prosecutors can ask jurors to vote to extend their term, but generally avoid doing so. They also are often reluctant to impanel a new grand jury after an earlier one has heard testimony, because witnesses could make conflicting statements if asked to testify again.

    And without Mr. Dunne, a high-ranking veteran of the office who has been closely involved with the inquiry for years, and Mr. Pomerantz, a leading figure in New York legal circles who was enlisted to work on it, the yearslong investigation could peter out.

    The resignations, following the monthlong pause, mark a reversal after the investigation had recently intensified. Cyrus R. Vance Jr., Mr. Bragg’s predecessor, convened the grand jury in the fall, and prosecutors began questioning witnesses before his term concluded at the end of the year. (Mr. Vance did not seek re-election.)

    In mid-January, reporters for The Times observed significant activity related to the investigation at the Lower Manhattan courthouse where the grand jury meets, with at least two witnesses visiting the building and staying inside for hours.

    The witnesses were Mr. Trump’s longtime accountant and an expert in the real estate industry, according to people familiar with the appearances, which have not been previously reported. Mr. Dunne and Mr. Pomerantz also made regular appearances at the courthouse.

    The burst of activity offered a sign that Mr. Bragg was forging ahead with the grand jury phase of the investigation, a final step before seeking charges.

    But in recent weeks, that activity has ceased, and Mr. Dunne and Mr. Pomerantz have been seen only rarely.

    Alvin Bragg took office as Manhattan district attorney on Jan. 1. The Trump investigation began under his predecessor, Cyrus R. Vance Jr.

    The pause coincides with an escalation in the activity of a parallel civil inquiry by the New York state attorney general, Letitia James, whose office is examining some of the same conduct by Mr. Trump.

    Ms. James, who last week received approval from a judge to question Mr. Trump and two of his adult children under oath, has filed court documents describing a number of ways in which the Trump Organization appeared to have misrepresented the value of its properties.

    She concluded that the company had engaged in “fraudulent or misleading” practices, and although she lacks the authority to criminally charge Mr. Trump, she could sue him.

    Mr. Bragg’s office must meet a higher bar to bring a criminal case and has encountered a number of challenges in pursuing Mr. Trump, including its inability thus far to persuade any Trump Organization executives to cooperate.

    Mr. Trump has disputed the notion that he inflated his property values or defrauded his lenders, and has accused Mr. Bragg and Ms. James, both Democrats who are Black, of being politically motivated and “racists.”

    “I’ve been representing Donald Trump for over a year in this case and I haven’t found any evidence that could lead to a prosecution against him, or any crimes,” said a lawyer for Mr. Trump, Ronald P. Fischetti. “I hope Mr. Bragg will now look again at all the evidence in the case and make a statement that he is discontinuing all investigation of Donald Trump.”

    As Mr. Bragg’s grand jury presentation has come to a halt, another serious criminal inquiry into the former president has been gaining steam. In recent weeks, a district attorney in Atlanta asked a judge to convene a grand jury for an investigation into Mr. Trump’s attempts to overturn the results of the 2020 election in Georgia.

    Another criminal investigation, in New York’s Westchester County, is examining Mr. Trump’s financial dealings at one of his company’s golf courses.

    The Manhattan investigation, which proceeded in fits and starts for years, was the most developed of the three criminal inquiries into Mr. Trump. It resulted in the indictments last summer of The Trump Organization and its long-serving chief financial officer, Allen H. Weisselberg, on separate tax-related charges.

    After announcing those charges, the prosecutors zeroed in on a subject that has spurred much debate over the years: Mr. Trump’s net worth.

    They have questioned whether Mr. Trump defrauded his lenders — sophisticated financial institutions like Deutsche Bank — by routinely inflating the value of his assets, The New York Times has previously reported.

    In particular, the prosecutors have focused on annual financial statements Mr. Trump provided the lenders, scrutinizing whether he overvalued his various hotels, golf clubs and other properties to score the best possible loan terms.

    Mr. Trump’s accounting firm, Mazars USA, compiled the statements based on information provided by the Trump Organization, leading the prosecutors to question whether the company had given its accountants bogus data.

    Early this month, Mazars notified the Trump Organization that it would no longer serve as its accountant and that it could no longer stand behind a decade of Mr. Trump’s financial statements.

    Mazars said it had not, “as a whole,” found material discrepancies between the information the Trump Organization provided and the true value of Mr. Trump’s assets.

    But given what it called “the totality of circumstances” — including its internal investigation and Ms. James’s court papers — Mazars instructed the company to notify anyone who had received the statements that they “should not be relied upon.”

    Even with Mazar’s retraction, a criminal case would likely be difficult to prove. The documents, known as statements of financial condition, contain a number of disclaimers, including acknowledgments that Mr. Trump’s accountants had neither audited nor authenticated his claims.

    And the prosecutors have thus far been unable to convince Mr. Trump’s long-serving chief financial officer to cooperate with the investigation, depriving them of the type of insider witness whose testimony can be crucial to complicated white collar criminal cases.

    Mr. Trump’s lenders might also not make for sympathetic victims with a jury. The lenders, which made millions of dollars in interest from Mr. Trump, conducted their own assessments of his assets.

    Despite the challenges, the prosecutors had been moving forward.

    In the fall, Mr. Vance convened what is known as a special grand jury, a panel of 23 Manhattan residents, chosen at random, to hear complex cases like the one involving Mr. Trump. Over the course of months, the jurors were expected to meet in secret to hear testimony from witnesses and examine other evidence put forward by the prosecutors.

    Special grand juries last six months, and at the end of these presentations, prosecutors typically direct the jurors to vote on whether there is “reasonable cause” to believe that the person could be guilty. While it is not a foregone conclusion that a grand jury will indict the target of an investigation, such panels routinely vote to bring the charges that prosecutors seek.

    Late last year, the grand jury heard testimony from Mr. Trump’s accountant at Mazars about Mr. Trump’s annual financial statements, The Times previously reported. Soon after, the prosecutors questioned two editors for Forbes Magazine, which has estimated Mr. Trump’s net worth over the years for its billionaires list.

    The accountant testified again last month, people with knowledge of the appearance said.

    A day later, the prosecutors questioned a real estate expert who specializes in property valuation, according to people with knowledge of that appearance. The witness works for the consulting firm FTI, which the district attorney’s office hired in 2020 to help analyze Mr. Trump’s financial documents.

    In the days after this testimony, the prosecutors lined up at least one other witness to appear before the grand jury. But late last month, they postponed the testimony, according to one of the people with knowledge of the matter.

    If Mr. Bragg ultimately closes the investigation, he could face political fallout in Manhattan, where Mr. Trump is generally loathed. And the district attorney has already had a rocky start to his tenure, after a memo he released outlining his policies for the office was met with furious pushback from local officials, small businesses and the public.

    Mr. Bragg — who was sworn in on Jan. 1 — is a former federal prosecutor and veteran of the New York State attorney general’s office, where he oversaw civil litigation against Mr. Trump and his administration under Ms. James’s predecessor.

    The district attorney’s criminal investigation into Mr. Trump began in the summer of 2018 under Mr. Vance, who initially looked into the Trump Organization’s role in paying hush money to a pornographic actress who said she had an affair with Mr. Trump.

    The inquiry grew out of a federal case against Mr. Trump’s former fixer, Michael D. Cohen, who pleaded guilty to arranging the hush money and said he did so at the direction of Mr. Trump.

    The focus of the investigation shifted after Mr. Vance, in 2019, subpoenaed Mazars for copies of Mr. Trump’s tax returns. Mr. Trump sued to block the subpoena, sparking a bitter 18-month legal battle that saw the former president take the case to the United States Supreme Court, where he lost twice.

    Mr. Dunne, who served as Mr. Vance’s general counsel and stayed on to help Mr. Bragg with the Trump investigation, argued the case before the Supreme Court. And around the time that the prosecutors received Mr. Trump’s tax documents, Mr. Vance recruited Mr. Pomerantz, a prominent former prosecutor and defense lawyer, to help lead the investigation.

    Around this time, the prosecutors turned their attention to Mr. Weisselberg, pressuring him to cooperate. But he refused, and in July, they announced an indictment against him and the Trump Organization.

    The case accused Mr. Weisselberg and the company of a 15-year scheme to pay for luxury perks for certain executives, like free apartments and leased Mercedes-Benzes, off the books.

    Mr. Weisselberg pleaded not guilty and his lawyers filed court papers this week seeking to dismiss the charges. A judge has tentatively scheduled a trial for late summer.

  14. reuters – AstraZeneca signs deal with Canada for 100,000 doses of COVID drug

    Feb 23 (Reuters) – AstraZeneca plc (AZN.L) signed an agreement with Canada for 100,000 doses of its antibody therapy for prevention of COVID-19 in some high-risk patients, the country’s government said on Wednesday.

    AstraZeneca’s Evusheld is under review by Health Canada for use as a preventive treatment against the disease in those who are immunocompromised.

    “While vaccines provide excellent protection, people who are immunocompromised may need additional protection against COVID-19,” said Canadian health minister Jean-Yves Duclos.

    Initial deliveries of the antibody are expected to arrive in Canada within a month of authorization, the government said.

    The company said doses of Evusheld will be delivered this year.
    AstraZeneca to supply Canada with 100,000 doses of Evusheld, a long-acting antibody combination for the prevention of COVID-19

    MISSISSAUGA, ON, Feb. 23, 2022 /CNW/ – AstraZeneca Canada has signed an agreement with the Government of Canada for the supply of 100,000 doses of Evusheld (tixagevimab co-packaged with cilgavimab), its long-acting antibody (LAAB) combination for the prevention (pre-exposure prophylaxis) of COVID-19 in those patient populations who require additional protection.

    Doses will be delivered in 2022, should Evusheld (the proposed trade name for AZD7442), receive regulatory approval from Health Canada.

    In November 2021, AstraZeneca Canada announced it had initiated a rolling review New Drug Submission with Health Canada for the authorization of Evusheld. If granted, Evusheld would be the first LAAB combination to receive Health Canada authorization for COVID-19 prevention.

    “Thousands of Canadians remain at serious risk for COVID-19 because they are unable to mount an adequate response to a vaccine due to an underlying health condition or medication they take that compromises their immune system,” said Kiersten Combs, President of AstraZeneca Canada. “We are proud to play a leading role in fighting the COVID-19 pandemic and, with Evusheld, we now have an easily-administered, long-lasting option, which we hope will soon be available to offer protection to immune-compromised populations against COVID-19 in Canada.”

    Approximately 2% of the global population is considered at increased risk of an inadequate response to a COVID-19 vaccine. Additionally, more than 40% of those hospitalized with breakthrough COVID-19 infections after vaccination are immune-compromised. This includes people with blood cancers or other cancers being treated with chemotherapy, and those taking medications after an organ transplant or who are taking immunosuppressive drugs for conditions, including multiple sclerosis and rheumatoid arthritis. Emerging evidence indicates that protecting vulnerable populations from getting COVID-19 could help prevent viral evolution that is an important factor in the emergence of variants.

    In August 2021, AstraZeneca announced high-level results of the primary analysis from the PROVENT pre-exposure prophylaxis trial, which showed Evusheld reduced the risk of developing symptomatic COVID-19 by 77% (95% confidence interval (CI): 46, 90), compared to placebo. Importantly, the trial population included people with co-morbidities and who may need additional protection from SARS-CoV-2 infection. Greater than 75% of participants in PROVENT presented with co-morbidities associated with an increased risk of severe disease or a reduced immune response to vaccination. Further data of the ongoing PROVENT trial announced in November 2021 demonstrated the long-term benefits with an 83% reduction in the risk of developing symptomatic COVID-19 compared to placebo at a median of 6 months follow-up.

    Multiple independent pseudovirus and authentic ‘live’ virus studies show that Evusheld retains neutralizing activity against the Omicron variant and all other tested variants of concern to date.

    About Evusheld

    Evusheld is a combination of two LAABs – tixagevimab (AZD8895) and cilgavimab (AZD1061) – derived from B-cells donated by convalescent patients after SARS-CoV-2 infection. Discovered by Vanderbilt University Medical Center and licensed to AstraZeneca in June 2020, the human monoclonal antibodies bind to distinct sites on the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein and were optimized by AstraZeneca with half-life extension and reduced Fc receptor and complement C1q binding. The half-life extension more than triples the durability of its action compared to conventional antibodies; data from the Phase III PROVENT trial show protection lasting at least six months, with the Phase I trial showing high monoclonal antibody titres for at least nine months. The reduced Fc receptor binding aims to minimize the risk of antibody-dependent enhancement of disease – a phenomenon in which virus-specific antibodies promote, rather than inhibit, infection and/or disease.

    In December 2021, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for the use of Evusheld (tixagevimab co-packaged with cilgavimab) for the pre-exposure prophylaxis (prevention) of COVID-19. It is the only antibody authorized in the US to prevent COVID-19 symptoms before virus exposure. Evusheld is also authorized for emergency use for prevention of COVID-19 and being supplied in several other countries around the world.

    In preclinical experiments, data show the LAABs were able to block the binding of the SARS-CoV-2 virus to host cells and protect against infection in cell and animal models of disease.18

    About AstraZeneca Canada
    AstraZeneca is a global, innovation-driven biopharmaceutical business with a focus on the discovery, development and commercialization of primary and specialty care medicines that transform lives. Our primary focus is on four important areas of healthcare: Cardiovascular, Renal and Metabolic disease; Oncology; Respiratory & Immunology; and Rare Diseases.
    AstraZeneca operates in more than 100 countries and its innovative medicines are used by millions of patients worldwide . In Canada, we employ roughly 1,100 employees across the country and our headquarters are located in Mississauga, Ontario. For more information, please visit the company’s website at

  15. aaaand… it’s muslims.
    The hostagetaker in Amsterdam is 27 year-old Abdel Rahman A. Born in the Netherlands, owns a plumbing company, his father is Syrian. He had prior convictions for threatening and stalking his ex, he has also been treated for psychological problems.
    The bomb vest has been confirmed by police, it’s also visible in several photos.
    His house was just raided, more info soon.
    Articles in Dutch:

  16. ctv – Trudeau revokes Emergencies Act

    Trudeau says the government will take steps to end the use of the Emergencies Act after it was invoked just over a week ago in response to the ongoing trucker convoy blockades and protests.

    Trudeau made the announcement alongside Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland, Justice Minister David Lametti, Public Safety Minister Marco Mendicino, and Emergency Preparedness Minister Bill Blair.

    The House of Commons passed a motion on Monday confirming the emergency powers, which included sweeping financial tools to cut the convoy’s funding.

    The Senate is still debating the matter.

  17. In ‘Breakthrough’ Israeli Study of IDF Veterans, Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy Found to Treat PTSD

    Israeli scientists at the Tel Aviv University have found that oxygen therapy can significantly reduce post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms, according to a study conducted among Israel Defense Force veterans.

    During a controlled clinical trial, researchers led by Tel Aviv University and the Shamir Medical Center identified brain wounds in IDF veterans with treatment-resistant PTSD, which they relieved by using hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT).

    An assessment of symptoms and brain scans post-treatment showed “functional and structural improvement (…) in the non-healing brain wounds that characterize PTSD…

    “Our results indicate that exposure to severe emotional trauma can cause organic damage to the brain…

    “Today we understand that treatment-resistant PTSD is caused by a biological wound in brain tissues, which obstructs attempts at psychological and psychiatric treatments.”

    The researchers noted that the success rate of current PTSD treatments, including trauma-focused psychotherapy and medication, is poor. Hyperbaric treatment aims to improve the supply of oxygen to the brain to activate the generation of new blood vessels and neurons. Treatments are conducted in a hyperbaric chamber, where atmospheric pressure is higher than sea-level pressure and the air is rich with oxygen.
    Israel’s radical new approach to psychological first aid

    Trauma expert Moshe Farchi’s model stresses the importance of cognitive communication to shift immediate attention from emotions to actions.

    [The] program …centers on 6 Cs: cognitive communication, challenge, control, commitment and continuity.

    The Six Cs model calls for activating the traumatized person mentally and physically. Activating might mean assigning a task, asking the person to take a walk or giving them decisions to make. Often those in trauma aren’t hurt but have witnessed or otherwise been involved in a frightening situation.

    But even injured people in psychological trauma can be given small decisions in order to feel in control, says Farchi. They can be offered a drink of water or asked to direct first-responders where to stand, for instance.

    The success of the Six Cs model has been documented. For example, in the summer of 2014, residents of an Israeli town on the Gaza border who were traumatized by rocket fire did not develop post-traumatic stress disorder if they had been treated on the scene according to Farchi’s protocol.

    90 seconds

    The scientific underpinning of this approach is dozens of studies demonstrating that the brain’s center of emotions, the amygdala, has a seesaw relationship w the brain’s center of logical actions, the prefrontal cortex.

    “Activating the amygdala by calming the person emotionally causes the prefrontal cortex to decrease its function, and vice versa,” says Farchi. “We need to reduce the dominance of the amygdala, so actually we should speak cognitively rather than emotionally.”

    Emotional communication (“Of course you’re scared”) only reinforces the person’s feeling of helplessness, while cognitive communication shifts attention from emotions to actions….

    • “From Major Jordan’s Diary”
      federalexpression – May 29, 2011

      Speech from the 1960’s. Major George Racey Jordan was responsible for facilitating the transfer of American Arms and Technology to the USSR during WWII under the Lend Lease Program. He kept a detailed diary including Primary Source documentation.

    • The Venona Secrets – 3 Video playlist

      The Venona Secrets presents one of the last great, untold stories of World War II and the Cold War.
      In 1995 the Venona documents secret Soviet cable traffic from the 1940s that the United States intercepted and eventually decrypted finally became available to American historians. Now, after spending more than five years researching all the available evidence, espionage experts Herbert Rimerstein and Eric Breindel reveal the full shocking story of the days when Soviet spies ran their fingers through America’s atomic-age secrets.
      Man, State and Memetics

      Video #1

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