The dichotomy between Washington’s relationship with Venezuela and Colombia is yet another clear example that the public justifications for the U.S.’s Latin America policy are little more than window dressing for the U.S.-backed expansion of neo-fascist governments throughout Latin America.
Several troubling situations are currently playing out across Colombia, yet the country’s continuing downward spiral into drug-fueled and politically-motivated violence has caused little concern in Washington, offering yet another clear indication that the U.S.’ current posturing on Venezuela is hardly motivated by concerns about “democracy,” “human rights,” or the welfare of the Venezuelan people.
This, of course, can hardly be considered surprising, given that Colombia is a top U.S. ally whose government has long been closely aligned with Washington’s interests. However, although the lack of U.S. government or media attention to Colombia may effectively hide it from the American public, the country is becoming increasingly lawless, with cocaine production reaching new record levels and the government sanctioning the mass murder of the country’s largest indigenous group. Not only that but since Colombia’s new president, Iván Duque, came to power late last year, the number of indigenous social leaders who have been murdered has spiked to the highest levels in over a decade.
Ultimately, the lack of media coverage of Colombia’s humanitarian crises, which have large implications for the Americas as a whole, is a telling example of how such crises are regularly weaponized by governments and media to exclusively target governments it wishes to pressure or overthrow, while turning a blind eye to those same or worse acts when committed by an allied nation….
Thank you to CHD’s Coalition Partner, ICAN, for writing this comprehensive letter to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) on December 31, 2018. The letter is a brilliant summary of the science questioning the safety of aluminum adjuvants and an exposé of the pervasive corruption that characterizes HHS’s vaccine clinical trials.
In the letter Del Bigtree stated, “Given the gravity of HHS’s responsibility, it is deeply troubling that the majority of HHS’s letter contains little more than broad unsupported conclusory assertions. Most of these conclusory assertions do not withstand basic scrutiny. HHS’s responses even often contradict its own source materials.” He went on to state, “Only by providing the science to support vaccine safety or acknowledging shortcomings in this science can HHS begin to restore Americans’ confidence in its ability to objectively assess and improve vaccine safety.” Be sure not to miss Appendix A: Questions Regarding Vaccine Safety and B: Post-Licensure Adverse Reactions.
The head of one of the world’s oldest elite foreign policy institutions in London is calling for the world’s pro-globalist think tanks to unite like never before, lest their neo-liberal world order dissolve in the populist tide that appears to be rising.
Chatham House Director Dr. Robin Niblett wrote an 11,000-word article entitled “Rediscovering a Sense of Purpose: The Challenge for Western Think Tanks” in Vol. 94, Issue 6 of Chatham House’s journal, International Affairs. In it, he declared: “To devise a common work [program], do think-tanks from across the world also need to possess a common sense of purpose? . . . . After something like a hundred years of think-tank experience, the answer is yes.”
Chatham House, also known as the Royal Institute of International Affairs, is a member of the original array of gilded private institutes that arose and revolutionized the world of geo-politics in the early 20th century. Other major members include the Carnegie Endowment for International Affairs (shown to have been involved in apparently treasonous activities by the Reece Committee in the 1950s), along with the Brookings Institution, and, of course, the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR).
Echoing the grave concerns expressed during early 2018 by CFR President Richard Haass to the International Relations Committee of the UK’s House of Lords, Dr. Niblett noted in his article that he’s apprehensive about the rise of “populist” politics, the implication being that think-tanks must either modify their mission or risk becoming increasingly irrelevant-possibly to the point of losing their grip on influencing government policy largely from “behind the throne,” something they’ve perfected ever since the eldest think tanks’ early but unsuccessful efforts to push the U.S. into the League of Nations-a failed forerunner of the United Nations.
The deeper challenge for Western think tanks is whether they can rediscover a sense of purpose that is as fit for the 21st Century as was that which mobilized their counterparts in the early 20th Century,” Niblett wrote, with noticeable nostalgia regarding the early days of stealthy power-brokering.
He added that, today, the world’s think tanks “need to stand for certain core principles of governance that have been shown by the experience of the last hundred years to offer the best prospects for sustainable security and prosperity.”
Exactly whose “sustainable security and prosperity” is at stake is never made clear, though the gilded investment class that undergirds these think tanks, and assuredly not the average citizen, is a safe bet. However, Niblett confesses that the age of the Internet, whatever its shortcomings, has generally enabled the citizenry to become better informed and therefore more skeptical of elite opinion.
Niblett put it as gingerly as he could: “Policy audiences appear less interested in the outputs of think tanks if they believe that these have no public resonance beyond the expert circles in which they were developed.”
Therefore, he added: “Think tanks have to apply a growing proportion of their resources to trying to mobilize popular engagement with their ideas. One approach has been to raise their public profile by commenting more on current policy developments, rather than analyzing their underlying drivers. The danger is that this blurs the line between think tanks and the media.”
What he’s not saying, however, is these tax-exempt outfits have long collaborated with the news media, even to the point of media personnel speaking at, or moderating, programs produced by these institutions but never reporting objectively on them. In this manner, the think tanks-lavishly funded by uber-wealthy donors, banks, defense contractors and other well-connected entities – help formulate public policy with nearly nothing in the way of general publicity on how their power-centralizing ideas are massaged and implemented as public policy.
Niblett evidently felt compelled to further confess that think tanks, as critics have long contended, really are a bridge between the super-rich and government and supply personnel to government itself, beyond formulating policy. …
An establishment pillar of the European ‘order’ – the Frankfurter Allgemeiner newspaper – explicitly touches the ‘live rail’, which is to say, it ran an op-ed last month titled ‘A Nazi EU?’, speculating on whether or not the present EU, dominated by Germany, should be understood as a lineal extension of German National Socialism. This has not before been an issue at all touched upon in mainstream German discourse. That it appears at all signals something important: a recognition that the dissidence being experienced by the EU has its roots in something other than just populist grievance tantrums. It is the resurfacing of an ancient struggle for the ‘soul’ of the international political order.
The author, Jasper von Altenbockum, quotes the AfD (Alternative für Deutschland) leader, Alexander Gauland, at its party conference, saying that the:
“Corrupt, inflated, undemocratic and latent totalitarian apparatus” of the EU should have no future. Gauland traced a popular line of reasoning: Because democratic legitimacy deficits can be observed in EU supranational institutions, [one must conclude that the EU] must be a coercive regime. The radical opponents of progressive integration [however] go one step further: They compare the EU … to the European ideology under National Socialism …
“Gauland also [advanced] a recently popular argument, which [allows] Brexit to gain a historical justification: [Speaking about European Unification], Gauland in Riesa said: “This goal was pursued by the French under Napoleon and, unfortunately, in a way, by the National Socialists. And, as everybody knows, England opposed them.
“What [that means, is that Gauland takes us beyond the mere claim of the EU being] a ” latent totalitarian apparatus”. [Rather, it suggests that] the EU and German European politics are in continuity with the Nazi propaganda of the European Union. There can hardly be a worse reproach. It provides the AfD with the welcome side effect of being able to present itself as immune to Nazi ideology”.
Well, as might be expected, von Altenbockum sees little to connect the European project with earlier Nazi racial ideology, but nonetheless he does concede that it is not only Gauland and the AfD (“fast becoming the German Brexit party”) who see these national socialist connections, however “the continuity of the European project from the National Socialist era is also considered by historians”, especially since Germany has again been accused of hegemonic strivings in Europe. As early as 2002, Hitler biographer Thomas Sandkühler called for “not so much to emphasize the breaches in European politics, where there should be more talk of continuities”.
What did this mean? Today, it is difficult to move beyond the racial ideology aspect. But, despite the appearance of the word ‘national’ in the name of the German National Socialist party, Hitler was no great advocate of nationalism. He was a harsh critic not only of the Protestant Westphalian triumph of 1648, but also of the institution of the national state in particular, which he saw as vastly inferior to the Germans’ historic imperial legacy. In place of the order of national states he set out to establish a Third Reich that expressly drew its inspiration from the ‘First Reich’—that is, from the German Holy Roman Empire with its universal aspirations and thousand-year reign. Hitler’s Germany was thus intended as an imperial state in every sense.
In short, in the centuries’ old politics of Europe, Western nations have been characterized by a struggle between two antithetical visions of world order: an order of free and independent nations each pursuing the political good in accordance with its own traditions and understanding, and an order of peoples united under a single regime of law, promulgated and maintained by a single supra-national authority.
In other words, Germany was on the side of the ancient tradition extending from Babylon to Imperial Rome, who saw it as their task, in the words of the Babylonian king Hamurabi, to “bring the four quarters of the world to obedience.” That obedience, after all, was what ensured salvation from war, disease, and starvation….
- Saudi law says every woman must have a male guardian, who has enormous power over her life and travel.
- The Saudi government has digitized parts of the guardian system, letting Saudi men manage women’s lives online.
- INSIDER spoke with Shahad al-Mohaimeed, a refugee who navigated this system to flee her family in 2017.
- Guardians can specify when and from which airports women can travel, effectively trapping them in Saudi Arabia.
- The system includes a text-messaging system that alerts men when women use their passports. They are often able to catch them as a result.
- The system has existed for years, but it has come under renewed scrutiny after the high-profile asylum claim of the Saudi teen Rahaf Mohammed.
- INSIDER also spoke with activists and women’s-rights experts to highlight the full extent of the system.
Shahad al-Mohaimeed got up at midnight to leave her hotel room overlooking the blue water of Trabzon, a Turkish vacation town on the Black Sea. Her family picked the hilly, historic port because it offered a seaside break, but within an Islamic society.
Creeping barefoot out of the bedroom, al-Mohaimeed gathered her family’s credit cards, keys, passports, and, crucially, their phones. This would slow them down, she thought, when they tried to follow her.
Her escape had taken a year of planning.
Standing on the road outside the hotel she panicked at the silence. It was the first time in her life she had been outside on her own.
It was also the first time since she was 10 that she had not woken up and put on a full-body covering, either a burqa or a niqab.
“I was 17 and I was so scared, so, so, scared,” she recalls. “I left at midnight, and the night was so dark. I was scared of my brother and my family.”
Until that moment, al-Mohaimeed had spent the entire 17 years of her life almost constantly in the physical presence of a male guardian, in accordance with the system enshrined in Saudi law.
Speaking with INSIDER, al-Mohaimeed described frequent physical abuse from a father who she said regularly threatened to kill her. Infractions like being seen in the company of men who weren’t family would be punished with having her wrists and ankles bound with rope. “My family are an abusive family,” she said.
“There is no support for the beaten,” she said, “even when it’s reported, police are always on the man’s side.”
Women who get caught running away from the country are regularly never seen again. There are rumors that some have been killed — a prospect al-Mohaimeed saw as all too real.
“When we decide to leave,” she said, “we decide to put our lives on the line. Because if we don’t succeed, our families are going to kill us. It’s shameful to have a daughter leave.”
INSIDER has not been able to contact al-Mohaimeed’s relatives to ask them about her account.
A sprawling database of women in Saudi Arabia that men use to bar them from travel
As well as physical restrictions and social pressure, al-Mohaimeed had to navigate a sophisticated online system to escape. Her father’s phone — the one she stole that night in Trabzon — would have given him access to a Saudi government system called “Absher.”
Absher means “the preacher” in Arabic. It is the state-run system that contains the online expression of Saudi Arabia’s restrictive male-guardianship laws.
The Absher system — little-discussed in Western media — contains a log of women in Saudi Arabia and the means to bar them from travel or catch them trying to leave without permission….
WASHINGTON, D.C., Feb. 11, 2019—In response to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit, the FDA has admitted, for the first time, that government agencies, including the CDC, are recommending vaccines for pregnant women that have neither been licensed for pregnant mothers by FDA nor tested for safety in clinical trials. The lawsuit, filed by Children’s Health Defense (CHD) attorney, Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. on behalf of Informed Consent Action Network (ICAN), a vaccine safety advocacy group, sought all clinical trial data used by FDA to approve influenza vaccines for pregnant women. The FDA’s terse reply: “We have no records responsive to your requests.”
The manufacturers of flu and Tdap vaccines warn against their use for pregnant mothers since their safety has never been established. Package inserts state that it is “not known” whether the vaccines “will harm an unborn baby” and there are “insufficient data” on use in pregnant women to inform vaccine-associated risks. FDA regulations strictly prohibit pharmaceutical companies from marketing products for “off-license” uses. Noncompliant companies are routinely prosecuted criminally and civilly, paying billions in lawsuits and settlements.
The CDC nevertheless has actively recommended influenza vaccination during any trimester of pregnancy since 2004 and has told pregnant women to get Tdap shots (for tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis) since 2011. The FDA is responsible for vaccine safety and licensing, but, in the just-released court documents, it admits that it has no safety data to back up the pregnancy recommendations. FDA’s website states that it has never formally approved any vaccines “specifically for use during pregnancy to protect the infant.”
Blanket recommendations for vaccination during pregnancy are a dangerous proposition due to vaccination’s ability to activate a maternal immune response that can damage the developing fetal brain—just as infections during pregnancy sometimes do. In 2008, neuroscientist Paul Patterson warned, “Even if it happens less than 1% of the time, vaccinating an entire population of pregnant women could affect thousands of children.”…
While the U.S. continues to conduct its mission of nation-building and “democracy promotion” in Afghanistan, bombing the country at unprecedented levels and being associated with de facto death squads on the ground could fuel distrust of Americans.
NANGARHAR PROVINCE, AFGHANISTAN — Elite CIA-backed special forces in Afghanistan are leaving a trail of carnage in the country. As such units do not operate under the umbrella of the Department of Defense, they have been given near-impunity despite standing accused of war crimes.
Last month, the New York Times cited “senior Afghan and international officials” who said that while most strike forces in Afghanistan have been put under the purview of Afghan intelligence since 2012, two of the most “ruthless” units are “still sponsored mainly by the CIA.”
On Friday, the Bureau of Investigative Journalism revealed that at least one of these units has the capability of calling in air strikes….
Brutality worthy of ISIS
In September, elders from the three Nangarhar districts gathered for a press conference in which they claimed that 100 civilians were killed by 02 in August. Elders are putting the number of civilians slain by 02 in the following two months, September and October, at 260.
One man who spoke at the conference said he and his two brothers were detained for three months as 02 tried to force video confessions of Taliban affiliation from him with threats of driving over him with a tank. He said he was placed in handcuffs and that they used needles to puncture holes in his veins.
In one case investigated by the Times, two brothers were killed as they watered their fields. In another case, a unit pursuing an alleged Taliban member entered the wrong home and killed a dozen civilians. In yet another case, 02 placed two brothers in handcuffs and spit hoods and interrogated them in front of their wives and children. After they were done being questioned, 02 dragged the brothers away and executed them in the corner of a bedroom, and then detonated the building.
According to “several current and former Afghan officials,” Americans help the unit find targets and guide operations. Those detained by such units frequently claim they have been tortured and Afghan officials say that Americans have been present at bases during such abuses. In the Nangarhar province alone, human-rights workers registered 15 complaints of torture by 02, according to the Times.
One medical worker who lives in the Bati Kot district in Nangarhar said he initially mistook 02 for ISIS when they showed up at his village surrounded by orange orchards.
“I ran and got my weapon — I thought it was the caliphate people. I didn’t know it was the government,” Khoshal Khan said. “Then they started firing, and I heard the gate blown up. They were speaking English, also.”…
Who could resist such a charming display of humanitarian goodwill?
On February 9th, the Yellow Vest protests throughout France took place for the 13th week in a row.
According to official numbers, 51,400 attended the protests, while the number was 69,000 just two weeks earlier. This is still a significant decrease from the first protest on November 17th that had 282,000 out on the streets.
The protests initially began as a response to a government decision to impose annual increases to diesel and carbon taxes, but have since evolved into a broader protests demanding French President Emmanuel Macron’s resignation and against his government as a whole. People also protest the high costs of living in France and the widespread economic uncertainty.
The protests are facing an issue. The Yellow Vest movement lacks a clear structure and leadership, and it is struggling to transform populist anger into real political force….
Again. Meanwhile survivors of medicalized birth trauma, including doctors, get dumber with each generation. How many times must medical science re-discover and re-forget an elementary physiological fact about birth before they forget it for all time?
This study was “funded by a $2.4 million National Institutes of Health grant”. A reflection of the profit incentive behind every ongoing institutionalized medical experiment.
KINGSTON, R.I. — Feb. 8, 2019 — A five-minute delay in the clamping of healthy infants’ umbilical cords results in increased iron stores and brain myelin in areas important for early-life functional development, a new University of Rhode Island nursing study has found.
“When we wait five minutes to clamp the cords of healthy babies, there is a return of the infant’s own blood from the placenta, and one of the results is a return of up to 50 percent of the baby’s iron-rich blood cells,” said URI Professor of Nursing Debra A. Erickson-Owens, a certified nurse-midwife, who conducted the study with Judith S. Mercer, also a midwife and URI nursing professor emeritus. “So when the brain needs red blood cells (and iron) to make myelin, the robustness of the iron stores make a big difference,” Erickson-Owens said.
The study, published in the December issue of The Journal of Pediatrics and funded by a $2.4 million National Institutes of Health grant, challenges the practice of immediate cord clamping, which is still widespread.
“I presented six times (at major conferences) on this topic last spring, and I am still concerned with the number of clinicians who do not put this evidence-based research into their day-to-day practice,” Erickson-Owens said. “In fact, the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology said in January 2017 that a one-minute delay is enough for healthy babies.
“Our study shows that waiting five minutes or more before clamping the umbilical cord, while infants are held skin-to-skin with the mother, leads to more myelin development,” Erickson-Owens said. “This is a low-tech, low-cost technique that we believe can mitigate iron deficiency and vulnerability to anemia.
“No other studies have been published on the association of the timing of cord clamping with early brain development, specifically myelin volume,” Erickson-Owens said. “What was significantly different was the amount of iron and brain myelin volume in the babies with delayed cord clamping, which was captured by an MRI.”…
The increasing precision with which they measure medical harm is definitely a high tech improvement over earlier unscientific anecdotal reports. But it does kinda detract from the bigger picture of gross symptomology like cerebral palsy, early-onset autism and death, although their connections with ICC have been studiously ignored for a very long time anyway.
How to put this delicately: this is an outrage. A long standing pattern of flagrant medical criminality under a cloak of “standard of care” and total impunity. They’ve known about this issue for over 200 years. Other mammals have known about it forever.
Before medicine got involved in birth ICC wasn’t even an issue because the same “primitive instincts” which prevent normal people from trying to breast feed placentas avoided the need to drug mothers into delirium so they wouldn’t remember the medieval tortures they endured at the hands of “experts”. ICC was introduced to keep babies from dying from those “twilight sleep” drugs (belladonna and morphine). After ICC became institutionalized it was just another way to maximize profits by expediting the obstetrical assembly line while adding to the mystique of medical experts responding to (iatrogenic) emergencies and needless imprinted birth trauma.
Besides direct brain damage, ICC is a major cause of meconium aspiration from gasping through fluid-filled respiratory passages as placental oxygen is choked off from the newborn. Luckily we have very expensive high tech NICU’s to deal with those particular iatrogenic emergencies.
Forget the empire’s war crimes in distant lands for just a minute. People need to start paying attention to what is happening under their very noses. How often do you see human rights demonstrations outside of hospitals that commit routine obstetrical abuse and genital mutilation? These abuses are a prelude to psychopathy and warmongering in the adult survivors. Maybe it’s time to start raising hell. Medicine has very clearly demonstrated its inability to change.
Go to youtube and look at videos of monkeys, dogs and cats giving birth. Do they make an emergency of immediately chewing through the umbilical cord? Do you think nature doesn’t know how to birth babies?
You want peace? Then stop hurting children.
“Immediate clamping of the umbilical cord at birth has become a standard procedure during the past two decades. This merits investigation as the cause of increased incidence of autism.
Clamping of the umbilical cord before the lungs function induces a period of total asphyxia and produces severe hypovolemia by preventing placental transfusion – a 30% to 50% loss of blood volume – resulting in a hypoxic, ischemic neonate at risk for brain damage. As in circulatory arrest and other factors that disrupt aerobic metabolism, damage of brainstem nuclei and the cerebellum can result. Visible damage seen in some cases of autism also involves brainstem nuclei and the cerebellum. The brainstem auditory pathway is especially vulnerable to brief total asphyxia. Impairment of the auditory system can be linked to verbal auditory agnosia, which underlies the language disorder in some children with autism.
Due to blood loss into the placenta, the immediately clamped neonate is very prone to develop infant anemia that has been widely correlated with mental deficiency and learning / behavior disorders that become evident in grade school.
We propose that increased incidence of autism, infant anemia, childhood mental disorders and hypoxic ischemic brain damage, all originate at birth from one cause – immediate umbilical cord clamping. This deserves to be investigated as extensively as genetics or exposure to toxic substances as an etiological factor for autism. Normal cord closure, with placental oxygenation and transfusion, prevents asphyxia and ischemia.
Allowing physiological cord closure at every delivery could at least reduce the incidence of birth brain injuries. …
Immediate clamping of the umbilical cord before the child has breathed (ICC) has been condemned in obstetrical literature for over 200 years.   In the 1970s, primate research [A] using ICC to produce neonatal asphyxia resulted in brain lesions similar to those of human neonatal asphyxia.”
Anemia resulting from premature clamping may lead to long-term cognitive deficiencies, even where iron supplements are given:
SIDS has been correlated with abnormalities in neurochemical metabolism in the brainstem, which is the area most affected by ICC.
The finding that boys are more vulnerable to the effects of ICC than girls correlates with higher rates of both SIDS and autism among boys.
The trauma of being asphyxiated at birth after losing half your blood to the placenta can only be imagined.
“In 1975, the College Entrance Examination Board commissioned an advisory panel to examine the possible reasons for an alarming continuing decline in the scores of high school students on the Scholastic Aptitude Tests or, “SAT’s,” a decline which had started with the 18-year-olds born in 1945 and thereafter. From 1963 to 1977, the score average on the verbal part of the SAT’s fell 49 points. The mathematical scores declined 31 points. (1) (…)
“The SAT is designed to be an unchanging measurement. Considerable effort has been made to keep the test a sufficiently constant measure so that any particular score received on a current test indicates the same level of ability to do college work that the same score did 36 or 20 or 5 or 2 years ago. The SAT measures individual students’ capacities not only in comparison with their peers in the particular group but also in comparison with those who took the test in earlier years …. The SAT score decline does not result from changes in the test or in the methods of scoring it.” (2) (…)
“What happened around 1945 that might have contributed to declining academic performance in the United States in the years that followed? Consider this brief history: According to figures from the National Center for Health Statistics, hospitals were the setting for only 36.9% of American births in 1936. By 1945 that figure had more than doubled to 78.8%. In 1950, 88% of Americans were born in hospitals. In 1960 the figure was 96.6% and in 1970, 99.4%. (…)
“A reading of the obstetric literature indicates that there had always been philosophic differences among doctors regarding normal childbirth. There were those who felt it was best to allow nature to take its course and there were those who felt that intervention was better. In the years following the 40s and under the stresses of the population explosion, there was a tremendous acceleration of intervention in obstetric care. Instead of adapting to the time-consuming demands of normal childbirth, the obstetric community (with very few exceptions) changed normal childbirth to conform to the comfort of the mothers and the convenience of the doctors, hospital staffs and hospital routines — all at the expense of the fetus and newborn.”