Saturday, April 15, 2017

CIA Director calls WikiLeaks an “enemy,” says Assange has “no First Amendment freedoms”

ORIGINAL LINK
  CIA Director calls WikiLeaks an “enemy,” says Assange has “no First Amendment freedoms” By Eric London 15 April 2017 In a speech Thursday at a Washington, DC think tank, CIA Director Michael Pompeo called the whistleblower site WikiLeaks a “non-state hostile intelligence service” and said news organizations that reveal the government’s crimes are “enemies” […]

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Americans Are No Different Than Germans Were (and Are).

ORIGINAL LINK

Eric Zuesse, originally posted at strategic-culture.org

Daniel Goldhagen blamed the Holocaust on “the Germans” (by which he meant the German people), and said that they perpetrated the Holocaust because they positively enjoyed murdering “the Jews.” But, as has long been well understood by historians (except when they fail to point to it as being a disproof of Goldhagen’s bigoted and indefensible anti-German thesis), Hitler had to work long and hard in order to bring about a consensus, first amongst his own leadership group, and then in the population as a whole, favoring the extermination-option. Hitler, Der Fuehrer, “The Leader,” clearly was the catalyst turning the chemical mixture into the chemical reaction known as the Holocaust. Without Hitler, it would not have taken place. Thus, the issue that has always been failed by ‘historians’ is not why “the Germans” did it (which Goldhagen botched), but why the Nazi leadership did it, and ultimately why Der Fuehrer did it.

David Bankier, in his 1992 The Germans and the Final Solution: Public Opinion under Nazism, documented this — that the Holocaust came from the top of German society, its leaders, not from the bottom, the masses (such as Goldhagen said). Bankier showed the difficulties that Hitler had to overcome in order to bring the public with him on his anti-Semitic policies. While Goldhagen did deal cursorily with Bankier’s evidence, he never really came to grips with it, perhaps because Bankier brought Hitler back to center-stage and Goldhagen was committed instead to viewing German cooperation with the Holocaust as having been essentially spontaneous, which Bankier proved not to have been at all the case. It really was a Fuehrer-state. It really was not a democratic state. The Holocaust was a dictatorial phenomenon, not a democratic one. Aristocrats hire and fire the ‘historians’ (such as Goldhagen), but blaming things such as the Holocaust upon any public, is not history; it is myth.

In my own 2000 book about the subject, Why the Holocaust Happened, I addressed, in more detail than has elsewhere been done, why Hitler did it; I documented, from his own statements, the gradual development, in Hitler’s mind, of his idea for the Holocaust-to-come, beginning from the motivation’s original inception in the Fall of 1919, through to the closing words of his final statement, his “Political Testament,” at 4 a.m. on 29 April 1945: “Above all, I enjoin the government and the people to uphold the race laws to the limit and to resist mercilessly the poisoner of all nations, international Jewry.” Even when about to commit suicide, completing the Holocaust was his main concern. For Hitler, WW II was a means to an end: a Jew-free world. Even at his suicide, he still hoped that, somehow, the job would be completed successfully. He now recognized that he would lose the war, which war he had always thought would be the essential means in order to achieve his ultimate goal, but he did not lose all hope for that goal. Hitler’s goal was not merely that Germans would control the world (victory in WW II), but was also that the world they would control would have no Jews in it. At first, he had to deceive almost everyone about what his goal was; and part of the reason for this was that (unlike Goldhagen) he understood quite well that the German people needed to be manipulated toward this end — only a small minority of Germans would have voted for him if they had understood what he really had in mind.

This same misconception exists today with regard to Americans, though in a modified form. America’s shames are instead that America is today the world’s most aggressive, rabidly invasion-prone and coup-perpetrating country; and, in our past, slavery used to be accepted here. But, likewise, here as there, the shames are not against the general public: slavery was brought to this country and enforced by King George III, and polls generally show that the American public is far more inclined to avoid invasions than to seek them. In this country, just like in Germany, the atrocities come from the leadership-class, not from the public (regardless of what the aristocrats who own the publishing-houses might prefer to publish as constituting ‘history’ on the subject).

The most invasion-and-coup-perpetrating of all of the major U.S. Presidential candidates was Hillary Clinton, who received overwhelmingly more money from America’s billionaires than did any other candidate: “Whereas Hillary got 53.27% of her total appx. $775M as direct individual donations of $200+, Trump got only 13.94% of his appx. $425M that way.” And Bernie Sanders (who would have won the general election if Hillary’s DNC hadn’t sabotaged the primaries) was even more of a “grass roots” candidate than Trump was. The U.S. aristocracy craves to conquer Russia, and toward that end has one-by-one overthrown the leaders of governments that are at all friendly toward Russia, but the public need to be dragged into the invasion-mode by the owners of the ‘news’ media and by the aristocracy’s many agents in the U.S. House and U.S. Senate — the American public don’t want World War III, but the top stockholders in corporations such as Lockheed Martin do.

If the U.S. aristocracy succeed in bringing about a war with Russia, the blame will rest upon the Americans who have purchased and are occupying their luxurious mulitimilliondollar nuclear bunkers (such as here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here), and not upon the Americans who had been given only a fake ‘choice’ between the fascist Hillary Clinton and the fascist Donald Trump, and who had ‘chosen’ either the one or the other poison.

German democracy ended up being taken over by Germany’s aristocracy, and now American democracy has been taken over by America’s aristocracy, but in neither case is it the fault of the public, in either country. In neither country did the public want this — the aristocracy imposed it upon the public, in both cases. Bigotry pre-exists, everywhere, but genocides and other such atrocities are always the end-product of extensive organized and planned campaigns to deceive a mass of people into empowering some tyrant who is leading the dirty-work of his aristocracy. Almost all wars are between aristocracies; the public on the invading side need first to be deceived into invading — it’s not something that most people, anywhere, actually want to do.

—————

Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of  They’re Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010, and of  CHRIST’S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity.

Americans Are No Different Than Germans Were (and Are). was originally published on Washington's Blog



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Video Evidence of False Claims Made in the White House Intelligence Report of April 11, 2017

ORIGINAL LINK

By Theodore A. Postol, professor emeritus of science, technology, and national security policy at MIT.  Postol’s main expertise is in ballistic missiles. He has a substantial background in air dispersal, including how toxic plumes move in the air. Postol has taught courses on weapons of mass destruction – including chemical and biological threats – at MIT.  Before joining MIT, Postol worked as an analyst at the Office of Technology Assessment, as a science and policy adviser to the chief of naval operations, and as a researcher at Argonne National Laboratory.  He also helped build a program at Stanford University to train mid-career scientists to study weapons technology in relation to defense and arms control policy. Postol is a highly-decorated scientist, receiving the Leo Szilard Prize from the American Physical Society, the Hilliard Roderick Prize from the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the Richard L. Garwin Award from the Federation of American Scientists.

This is my third report assessing the White House intelligence Report of April 11, 2017.  My first report was titled A Quick Turnaround Assessment of the White House Intelligence Report Issued on April 11, 2017 about the Nerve Agent Attack in Khan Shaykhun, Syria and my second report was an Addendum to the first report.

This report provides unambiguous evidence that the White House Intelligence Report (WHR) of April 11, 2017 contains false and misleading claims that could not possibly have been accepted in any professional review by impartial intelligence experts.  The WHR was produced by the National Security Council under the oversight of the National Security Advisor, Lieutenant General H. R. McMaster.

Postol 1This image was extracted from a video of a worker during midday (note shadows) on April 5, 2017 next to the crater where sarin was allegedly released according to the White House Intelligence Report (WHR) issued of April 11, 2017. 

The WHR asserts that it reviewed commercial video evidence and concluded that sarin came from the crater next to a man.  Other video frames show unprotected workers in the crater showing no evidence of sarin poisoning at the same time the dead birds are being packaged.  The URLs to this and a related video are contained in this report.

The evidence presented herein is from two selected videos which are part of a larger cache of videos that are available on YouTube.  These videos were uploaded to YouTube in the time period between April 5, 2017 and April 7, 2017.  Analysis of the videos shows that all of the scenes taken at the site where the WHR claims was the location of a sarin release indicate significant tampering with the site.  Since these videos were available roughly one week before the White House report was issued on April 11, this indicates that the office of the WHR made no attempt to utilize the professional intelligence community to obtain accurate data in support of the findings in the report.

The video evidence shows workers at the site roughly 30 hours after the alleged attack that were wearing clothing with the logo “Idlib Health Directorate.”  These individuals were photographed putting dead birds from a birdcage into plastic bags.  The implication of these actions was that the birds had died after being placed in the alleged sarin crater.  However, the video also shows the same workers inside and around the same crater with no protection of any kind against sarin poisoning.

These individuals were wearing honeycomb face masks and medical exam gloves.  They were otherwise dressed in normal streetwear and had no protective clothing of any kind.

The honeycomb face masks would provide absolutely no protection against either sarin vapors or sarin aerosols.  The masks are only designed to filter small particles from the air.  If there were sarin vapor, it would be inhaled without attenuation by these individuals.  If the sarin were in an aerosol form, the aerosol would have condensed into the pours in the masks, and would have evaporated into a highly lethal gas as the individuals inhaled through the mask.  It is difficult to believe that such health workers, if they were health workers, would be so ignorant of these basic facts.

In addition, other people dressed as health workers were standing around the crater without any protection at all.

As noted in my earlier reports, the assumption in WHR that the site of the alleged sarin release had not been tampered with was totally unjustified and no competent intelligence analyst would have agreed that this assumption was valid.  The implication of this observation is clear – the WHR was not reviewed and released by any competent intelligence experts unless they were motivated by factors other than concerns about the accuracy of the report.

The WHR also makes claims about “communications intercepts” which supposedly provide high confidence that the Syrian government was the source of the attack.  There is no reason to believe that the veracity of this claim is any different from the now verified false claim that there was unambiguous evidence of a sarin release at the cited crater.

The relevant quotes from the WHR are collected below for purposes of reference:

The United States is confident that the Syrian regime conducted a chemical weapons attack, using the nerve agent sarin, against its own people in the town of Khan Shaykhun in southern Idlib Province on April 4, 2017.

We have confidence in our assessment because we have signals intelligence and geospatial intelligence, laboratory analysis of physiological samples collected from multiple victims, as well as a significant body of credible open source reporting

We cannot publicly release all available intelligence on this attack due to the need to protect sources and methods, but the following includes an unclassified summary of the U.S. Intelligence Community’s analysis of this attack.

By 12:15 PM [April4, 2017] local time, broadcasted local videos included images of dead children of varying ages.

… at 1:10 PM [April4, 2017] local … follow-on videos showing the bombing of a nearby hospital …

Commercial satellite imagery from April 6 showed impact craters around the hospital that are consistent with open source reports of a conventional attack on the hospital after the chemical attack.

Moscow has since claimed that the release of chemicals was caused by a regime airstrike on a terrorist ammunition depot in the eastern suburbs of Khan Shaykhun.

An open source video also shows where we believe the chemical munition landed [Emphasis Added]—not on a facility filled with weapons, but in the middle of a street in the northern section of Khan Shaykhun. Commercial satellite imagery of that site from April 6, [Emphasis Added] after the allegation, shows a crater in the road that corresponds to the open source video.

observed munition remnants at the crater and staining around the impact point are consistent with a munition that functioned, but structures nearest to the impact crater did not sustain damage that would be expected from a conventional high-explosive payload. Instead, the damage is more consistent with a chemical munition.

Russia’s allegations fit with a pattern of deflecting blame from the regime and attempting to undermine the credibility of its opponents.

Summary and Conclusions

It is now clear from video evidence that the WHR report was fabricated without input from the professional intelligence community.

The press reported on April 4 that a nerve agent attack had occurred in Khan Shaykhun, Syria during the early morning hours locally on that day.  On April 7, The United States carried out a cruise missile attack on Syria ordered by President Trump.  It now appears that the president ordered this cruise missile attack without any valid intelligence to support it.

In order to cover up the lack of intelligence to supporting the president’s action, the National Security Council produced a fraudulent intelligence report on April 11 four days later.  The individual responsible for this report was Lieutenant General H. R. McMaster, the National Security Advisor.  The McMaster report is completely undermined by a significant body of video evidence taken after the alleged sarin attack and before the US cruise missile attack that unambiguously shows the claims in the WHR could not possibly be true.  This cannot be explained as a simple error.

The National Security Council Intelligence Report clearly refers to evidence that it claims was obtained from commercial and open sources shortly after the alleged nerve agent attack (on April 5 and April 6).  If such a collection of commercial evidence was done, it would have surely found the videos contained herein.

This unambiguously indicates a dedicated attempt to manufacture a false claim that intelligence actually supported the president’s decision to attack Syria, and of far more importance, to accuse Russia of being either complicit or a participant in an alleged atrocity.

The attack on the Syrian government threatened to undermine the relationship between Russia and the United States.  Cooperation between Russia and the United States is critical to the defeat of the Islamic State.  In addition, the false accusation that Russia knowingly engaged in an atrocity raises the most serious questions about a willful attempt to do damage relations with Russia for domestic political purposes.

We repeat here a quote from the WHR:

An open source video also shows where we believe the chemical munition landed—not on a facility filled with weapons, but in the middle of a street in the northern section of Khan Shaykhun [Emphasis Added]. Commercial satellite imagery of that site from April 6, after the allegation, shows a crater in the road that corresponds to the open source video.

The data provided in these videos make it clear that the WHR made no good-faith attempt to collect data that could have supported its “confident assessment.” that the Syrian government executed a sarin attack as indicated by the location and characteristics of the crater.

This very disturbing event is not a unique situation.  President George W. Bush argued that he was misinformed about unambiguous evidence that Iraq was hiding a substantial store of weapons of mass destruction.  This false intelligence led to a US attack on Iraq that started a process that ultimately led to the political disintegration in the Middle East, which through a series of unpredicted events then led to the rise of the Islamic State.

On August 30, 2013, the White House produced a similarly false report about the nerve agent attack on August 21, 2013 in Damascus.  This report also contained numerous intelligence claims that could not be true.  An interview with President Obama published in The Atlantic in April 2016 indicates that Obama was initially told that there was solid intelligence that the Syrian government was responsible for the nerve agent attack of August 21, 2013 in Ghouta, Syria.  Obama reported that he was later told that the intelligence was not solid by the then Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper.

Equally serious questions are raised about the abuse of intelligence findings by the incident in 2013.  Questions that have not been answered about that incident is how the White House produced a false intelligence report with false claims that could obviously be identified by experts outside the White House and without access to classified information.  There also needs to be an explanation of why this 2013 false report was not corrected.  Secretary of State John Kerry emphatically testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee repeating information in this so-called un-equivocating report.

On August 30, 2013 Secretary of State Kerry made the following statement from the Treaty Room in the State Department:

Our intelligence community has carefully reviewed and re-reviewed information regarding this attack [Emphasis added], and I will tell you it has done so more than mindful of the Iraq experience. We will not repeat that moment. Accordingly, we have taken unprecedented steps to declassify and make facts available to people who can judge for themselves.

It is now obvious that this incident produced by the WHR, while just as serious in terms of the dangers it created for US security, was a clumsy and outright fabrication of a report that was certainly not supported by the intelligence community.

In this case, the president, supported by his staff, made a decision to launch 59 cruise missiles at a Syrian air base.  This action was accompanied by serious risks of creating a confrontation with Russia, and also undermining cooperative efforts to win the war against the Islamic State.

I therefore conclude that there needs to be a comprehensive investigation of these events that have either misled people in the White House White House, or worse yet, been perpetrated by people to protect themselves from domestic political criticisms for uninformed and ill-considered actions.

Sincerely yours, Theodore A. Postol

Professor Emeritus of Science,
Technology, and National Security Policy
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Email: postol@mit.edu

Video Evidence That Reveals the White House Intelligence Report
Issued on April 11, 2017 Contains Demonstrably False Claims about a Sarin Dispersal Crater Allegedly Created
in the April 4, 2017 Attack in Khan Sheikoun, Syria

VIDEO #1:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qeosawyrgyo

Dead Birds Video:

Note: Please see original .pdf uploaded here for more organized presentation of the screenshots.

Postol 2Postol 3
Postol 4Postol 5Postol 6Postol 7Postol 8Postol 9

VIDEO # 2:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IyFAl2gjZJQ

Idlib Health Directorate Tampering with Alleged Sarin Dispersal Site Video

Postol 10Postol 20Postol 21Postol 22

Video Evidence of False Claims Made in the White House Intelligence Report of April 11, 2017 was originally published on Washington's Blog



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Thursday, April 13, 2017

Chicago Has a Destructive Plan to "Prepare" Students for Life After High School

ORIGINAL LINK
Chicago is touting a first-of-its-kind requirement for high school students — and it’s raising plenty of eyebrows. Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced a proposal last week to withhold high school diplomas from students without concrete post-graduation plans. The plan has been called “cruel and appalling,” “absurd,” and a “half-baked” attempt to “micro-manage.” This attempt would demand students to […]

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'Clean eating' is a ticking timebomb that puts young at risk of fractures

'Clean eating' is a ticking timebomb that puts young at risk of fractures: "A cult of clean eating is a “ticking timebomb” that could leave young people with weak bones, the National Osteoporosis Society has warned.

Research by the charity shows that four in ten of those aged between 18 and 24 have tried such regimes, which are now coming under attack for cutting out major food groups, such as dairy.

The diets have become increasingly fashionable, and are associated with a number of celebrities, who have boasted how they have cut out gluten, dairy, grains and refined sugars."



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Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Assange Reminds The World: "The Potential For The Disastrous Rise Of Misplaced Power Persists"

ORIGINAL LINK

Authored by Julian Assange, editor of WikiLeaks, published op-ed via The Washington Post,

On his last night in office, President Dwight D. Eisenhower delivered a powerful farewell speech to the nation — words so important that he’d spent a year and a half preparing them. “Ike” famously warned the nation to “guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.”

Much of Eisenhower’s speech could form part of the mission statement of WikiLeaks today. We publish truths regarding overreaches and abuses conducted in secret by the powerful.

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Our most recent disclosures describe the CIA’s multibillion-dollar cyberwarfare program, in which the agency created dangerous cyberweapons, targeted private companies’ consumer products and then lost control of its cyber-arsenal. Our source(s) said they hoped to initiate a principled public debate about the “security, creation, use, proliferation and democratic control of cyberweapons.”

The truths we publish are inconvenient for those who seek to avoid one of the magnificent hallmarks of American life — public debate. Governments assert that WikiLeaks’ reporting harms security. Some claim that publishing facts about military and national security malfeasance is a greater problem than the malfeasance itself. Yet, as Eisenhower emphasized, “Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together.”

Quite simply, our motive is identical to that claimed by the New York Times and The Post — to publish newsworthy content. Consistent with the U.S. Constitution, we publish material that we can confirm to be true irrespective of whether sources came by that truth legally or have the right to release it to the media. And we strive to mitigate legitimate concerns, for example by using redaction to protect the identities of at-risk intelligence agents.

Dean Baquet, executive editor of the New York Times, defended publication of our “stolen” material last year: “I get the argument that the standards should be different if the stuff is stolen and that should influence the decision. But in the end, I think that we have an obligation to report what we can about important people and important events.” David Lauter, Washington bureau chief of the Los Angeles Times, made a similar argument: “My default position is democracy works best when voters have as much information as possible . . . And that information often comes from rival campaigns, from old enemies, from all sorts of people who have motives that you might look at and say, ‘that’s unsavory.’ ”

The media has a long history of speaking truth to power with purloined or leaked material — Jack Anderson’s reporting on the CIA’s enlistment of the Mafia to kill Fidel Castro; the Providence Journal-Bulletin’s release of President Richard Nixon’s stolen tax returns; the New York Times’ publication of the stolen “Pentagon Papers”; and The Post’s tenacious reporting of Watergate leaks, to name a few. I hope historians place WikiLeaks’ publications in this pantheon. Yet there are widespread calls to prosecute me.

President Thomas Jefferson had a modest proposal to improve the press: “Perhaps an editor might begin a reformation in some such way as this. Divide his paper into 4 chapters, heading the 1st, ‘Truths.’ 2nd, ‘Probabilities.’ 3rd, ‘Possibilities.’ 4th, ‘Lies.’ The first chapter would be very short, as it would contain little more than authentic papers, and information.” Jefferson’s concept of publishing “truths” using “authentic papers” presaged WikiLeaks.

People who don’t like the tune often blame the piano player. Large public segments are agitated by the result of the U.S. presidential election, by public dissemination of the CIA’s dangerous incompetence or by evidence of dirty tricks undertaken by senior officials in a political party. But as Jefferson foresaw, “the agitation [a free press] produces must be submitted to. It is necessary, to keep the waters pure.”

Vested interests deflect from the facts that WikiLeaks publishes by demonizing its brave staff and me. We are mischaracterized as America-hating servants to hostile foreign powers. But in fact I harbor an overwhelming admiration for both America and the idea of America. WikiLeaks’ sole interest is expressing constitutionally protected truths, which I remain convinced is the cornerstone of the United States’ remarkable liberty, success and greatness.

I have given up years of my own liberty for the risks we have taken at WikiLeaks to bring truth to the public. I take some solace in this: Joseph Pulitzer, namesake of journalism’s award for excellence, was indicted in 1909 for publishing allegedly libelous information about President Theodore Roosevelt and the financier J.P. Morgan in the Panama Canal corruption scandal. It was the truth that set him free.



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Court Rules Facebook Can’t Challenge Demands for User Data (and Can’t Tell Users)

ORIGINAL LINK

2016-American-Silver-Eagle-bullion-coins

Facebook is not exactly the champion of user privacy, but at least in one case, the company did go to bat for its users. Facebook took New York law enforcement to court over secret warrants that allowed authorities to collect user data.

Unfortunately, Facebook just lost their case in the New York courts. The court ruled that only users themselves, not facebook, can challenge law enforcement demands for their data.

The only problem is, the court orders usually come with a gag order as well. Facebook is not allowed to tell their users that law enforcement is taking their data. And Facebook is not allowed to challenge these orders on behalf of their users.

So in true kangaroo court fashion, the only people able to challenge the government are those forbidden from being told that the government is investigating them. Well isn’t that convenient for prosecutors.



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U.S. INTELLIGENCE SOURCE: SYRIA CHEMICAL WEAPONS ATTACK LAUNCHED FROM SAUDI BASE

ORIGINAL LINK

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Award-winning Iran-Contra journalist Robert Parry says the chemical weapons attack in Syria was launched from a joint Saudi-Israeli special operations base in Jordan, according to his intelligence sources.

U.S. intelligence analysts determined that a drone was responsible for the attack and “eventually came to believe that the flight was launched in Jordan from a Saudi-Israeli special operations base for supporting Syrian rebels,” according to the source.

“The suspected reason for the poison gas was to create an incident that would reverse the Trump administration’s announcement in late March that it was no longer seeking the removal of President Bashar al-Assad,” writes Parry.



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Victim in United Flight Debacle Gets Smear Treatment

ORIGINAL LINK

You would think that an elderly doctor (69 years old!) being filmed getting dragged by police off a United airplane in order to make room for the airline employees would be immune to the "He's no angel" defense of government violence.

You would be wrong, though, and underestimating the willingness of media outlets to publish anything that has the potential to get them attention, even negative attention. Everybody's got a past that can be used against them.

It has become a common practice that when a citizen has a very public, highly publicized encounter with law enforcement, his or her criminal background very quickly ends up in the hands of local media outlets.

Sometimes it's relevant. If a criminal suspect gets wounded or killed in a confrontation with police, a history of convictions for violent crimes helps put it in context. It doesn't inherently mean the police's behavior was justified in any particular instance, but it is important information. And the public should know.

But sometimes it's clearly an attempt to make the person subjected to police aggression look guilty in the eyes of the public and shield the authorities from criticism for bad behavior.

All of that is to say the Courier-Journal in Kentucky got its hands on the criminal and licensing background of the guy that got forcibly yanked (and injured) by Chicago police off that United flight, and it turns out this David Dao fellow did some bad things, more than a decade ago. But they've decided to dredge it up anyway:

Dao, who went to medical school in Vietnam in the 1970s before moving to the U.S., was working as a pulmonologist in Elizabethtown when he was arrested in 2003 and eventually convicted of drug-related offenses after an undercover investigation, according to documents filed with the Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure last June. The documents allege that he was involved in fraudulent prescriptions for controlled substances and was sexually involved with a patient who used to work for his practice and assisted police in building a case against him.

Dao was convicted of multiple felony counts of obtaining drugs by fraud or deceit in November 2004 and was placed on five years of supervised probation in January 2005. He surrendered his medical license the next month.

The Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure permitted Dao to resume practicing medicine in 2015 under certain conditions.

None of this provides any contextual information useful to understanding Dao's refusal to comply with United. It's a smear. There's no reason to believe any of it is not true, but it is not journalism that provides any actually useful context about Dao. They can't even say he was misleading the airline when he said he had patients to treat as an explanation for his refusal to disembark "voluntarily."

The newspaper is being absolutely blasted on both their website and on Twitter for running with this story. There are maybe one or two people who defend the publishing and the idea that Dao should have complied and think his criminal background is in any way related. A poll asking whether the Courier-Journal should have published this story would likely lead to a very lopsided result telling the paper they made the wrong choice here.

I did not see anywhere in these tweets or comments anybody saying the newspaper shouldn't be allowed to have published this information, which is good. This is a perfect example of using "more speech" to counter "bad speech." The media outlet arguably made a poor choice in what information to publish and is being publicly criticized for doing so. It would not surprise me if the editor there was being inundated with angry phone calls.

Nevertheless, though there is no call for formal government censorship, it's worth looking at this story about Dao's checkered past and thinking about the development of "right to be forgotten" orders and regulations in the European Union. This is a "right" used to force censorship of the internet, requiring search engines like Google to remove links to past reports, news stories, and information that is often factually true but is embarrassing and no longer relevant or that allegedly violates the privacy of the citizens involved. This information is often related to past criminal activity and convictions.

The concepts underlying the "right to be forgotten" push are rightly a concern for supporters of free speech because not only does it lead to censorship, it also puts government authorities in the position of deciding what is and isn't relevant to remain in the public eye. The potential consequence is that powerful political figures and wealthy, connected individual are able to abuse the concept to conceal relevant information about their own misconduct.

There are plenty of examples of how governments in the United States already conceal misconduct by authorities and officials. Reportedly the officers responsible for forcibly dragging Dao off the flight are on leave and being investigated. If any actual discipline comes their way (and that's a really big "if"—this conduct is probably considered justified by the government, which is itself a problem) we'll probably never know about it. Often police misconduct is protected from public disclosure by law, despite the public interest and the right to know when the people who are supposed to protect us are misbehaving.

When people try to sell the "right to be forgotten" to the American people, it's not going to be cases of police misconduct and political corruption arrests they'll be using. It will be cases like Dao's here. The decision by the Courier-Journal to publish information about Dao's past that was completely irrelevant to his behavior will be used to convince people that such information should not be kept public.

When media outlets make such poor publication choices, it increases the challenge of attempting to defend a broad definition of free speech and a free press. While it's important to protect the Courier-Journal's right to have made such a bad decision, it's also very worthwhile to push back against this poorly-thought-out choice because this is the kind of behavior that causes some people to decide that maybe some government censorship isn't such a bad thing.

What should people take from this Dao hit piece? Maybe think twice and read closely the next time a suspect's criminal background is dredged up in future news reports involving confrontations with authorities.



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Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Putin – The Chemical Attack In Syria Was A “False Flag” & More Are “Being Prepared” In Syria

ORIGINAL LINK

Another opportunity has presented itself to create awareness about what’s known as ‘false flag’ terrorism. False flag terrorism is a disaster created by a group of people for the purpose of blaming it on another entity, in order to justify a particular action by those who created the event in the first place. 9/11 brought a substantial amount of attention to this topic, and that is expressed by several polls indicating that the majority of American people do not believe the official story that the government provided. What’s more, studies are being published by physicists and engineers around the world illustrating that there is no doubt that what we saw was a controlled demolition.

“All three buildings were destroyed by carefully planned, orchestrated, and executed controlled demolition.”

–Professor Lynn Margulis from the Department of Geosciences at the University of Massachusetts (source) (source)

Since 9/11, several attacks have been labelled as false flags, the most recent being the chemical weapons attack in Syria. The U.S. and its allies are blaming the attack on Assad, claiming he did it to his own people. The evidence they provide, however, is lacking. It’s simply a political figure making an appearance on television, or a popular news anchor claiming that they have intel that it was an attack put on by Assad’s regime. Yet, on the opposing side, we have examples, documents, and a number of politicians, academics, journalists, and more, all telling a different story.

Russia’s President Vladimir Putin was the most recent to express this sentiment, as you can see in this snippet from a joint press conference with Italian President Sergio Mattarella in Moscow: “We have reports from multiple sources that false flags like this one – and I cannot call it otherwise – are being prepared in other parts of Syria, including the southern suburbs of Damascus. They plan to plant some chemical there and accuse the Syrian government of an attack.

9/11 is mentioned at the beginning of this article, and in the press conference Putin discusses how he and President Mattarella were reminded strongly of what happened in Iraq after 9/11, pointing to the fact that the U.S. and its allies claimed there were chemical weapons found in Iraq, part of the Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) stockpile. This ended with the complete destruction of the country, and the growth of the terror war industry, and the ‘Islamic State.’

“The global war on terrorism is a US undertaking, which is fake, it’s based on fake premises. It tells us that somehow America and the Western world are going after a fictitious enemy, the Islamic state, when in fact the Islamic state is fully supported and financed by the Western military alliance and America’s allies in the Persian Gulf. . . . They say Muslims are terrorists, but it just so happens that terrorists are Made in America. They’re not the product of Muslim society, and that should be abundantly clear to everyone on this floor. . . . The global war on terrorism is a fabrication, a big lie and a crime against humanity.”

–  Michel Chossudovsky (source) (source)

Putin and others have been expressing this sentiment for a very long time. Not long ago, at his talk at the 13th annual meeting of the Valdai International Discussion Club, he expressed how the global community is getting tired of  the powers that be and how they continue to  “churn out threats, imaginary and mythical threats such as the ‘Russian military threat,’ ” explaining how it’s a “profitable business that can be used to pump new money into defence budgets at home, get allies to bend to a single superpower’s interests, expand NATO and bring its infrastructure, military units and arms closer to our borders.”

He then goes on to describe the anti-Russian propaganda the U.S. has spread in recent years:

Another mythical and imaginary problem is what I can only call the hysteria the USA has whipped up over supposed Russian meddling in the American presidential election. The United States has plenty of genuinely urgent problems, it would seem, from the colossal public debt to the increase in firearms violence and cases of arbitrary action by the police. 

You can read more about that and watch his speech here.

Michel Chossudovsky is an award-winning author, an emeritus professor of economics at the University of Ottawa, the founder and director of the Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG), and the editor of Global Research. He has taught as a visiting professor in Western Europe, Southeast Asia, the Pacific, and Latin America, has served as an economic adviser to governments of developing countries, and has consulted for several international organizations. He is the author of eleven books, including The Globalization of Poverty and The New World Order (2003), America’s “War on Terrorism” (2005), The Global Economic Crisis,  and more.

I believe it’s important to mention people like this. He is one of many academics in this area creating awareness regarding the plan to destabilize multiple countries, and great at providing all of the evidence for it, since there is none stating that these attacks are indeed what mainstream media claims they are.

He’s published some articles recently that I highly recommend:

Pentagon Trained Syria’s Al Qaeda “Rebels” In The Use of Chemical Weapons

The Syria Chemical Weapons Saga: The Staging Of US NATO Sponsored Humanitarian Disaster

As part of their Vault 7 release, Wikileaks also recently released details of a CIA program that allows them to plant a bug and blame a hack on a foreign entity when it was in fact created by the accusing agency itself, called the  Marble Framework. So, it appears that not only do flag events occur in the ‘real’ world, they also occur in the cyber world. For all we know, one day a massive cyber attack will occur on the United States, and a foreign entity will be blamed, which will give the U.S. justification to take action and ramp up national security even more.

Wikileaks has also published a number of classified cables. One in particular shows how it was the primary goal of U.S. foreign policy to destabilize the Syrian government (source).

The list of proofs is extensive, and even high ranking military figures from the United States are backing it up. One example would be former Four Star General Wesley Clark, who was the Supreme Allied Commander of Europe of NATO from 1997-2000. In an interview with Democracy Now, Clark said that the U.S. had plans to invade countries in the Middle East, including Syria, for no justified reason at all. He offered the sentiments of some within the American military, that they have a “good military” and that they can “take down governments.” He spoke of a memo that described how the U.S. had “plans to take out seven countries in five years, starting with Iraq, and then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, and finishing off, Iran.” (source)

This type of thinking is reminiscent of a quote from Mark Twain, a man who was clearly ahead of his time.

“The statesmen will invent cheap lies, putting the blame upon the nation that is attacked, and every man will be glad of those conscience-soothing falsities, and will diligently study them, and refuse to examine any refutations of them; and thus he will by and by convince himself the war is just, and will thank God for the better sleep he enjoys after this process of grotesque self-deception.”

Mark Twain (source)

In order to keep this article relatively short, you can check out some others I’ve recently published on this event that go into a little bit more detail:

Another Syrian Chemical Weapons Attack Just Happened: The Final False Flag Before A Full US Intervention? 

Developing: US Just Fired 50 Tomahawk Missiles At A Syrian Military Base: But Why? 

Assad’s Top Political Advisor Says US Missile Strike Killed The People Fighting Terrorists

15 Quotes On False Flag Terrorism & The Secret Government That Will Make You Rethink Your Patriotism

Declassified CIA Report Exposes 25 Years Of US Plans To Destabilize Syria

Below is a video of Richard Dolan, who completed his graduate work at the University of Rochester, where he studied U.S. Cold War strategy, European history, and international diplomacy (geopolitics) Before that, he had studied at Alfred University and Oxford University, and had been a finalist for a Rhodes scholarship.

He’s clearly well researched, and on top of that he is an independent thinker, a deadly combination to raise some big awareness in a world that is still ‘waking up’ to such concepts as false flag terrorism.

A Word on Human Consciousness

It’s important to keep in mind that there is a massive shift in human consciousness happening right now, and there are several examples that come from health, finance, politics, and education to prove it. Over the past few decades, and especially within the last few years, new information has been coming to light that is completely shifting the perception of many about what is happening on our planet. It’s like the modern day equivalent to realizing the Earth isn’t flat.

When it comes to the topic of war in particular, false flag terrorism is our “not flat” moment. For years, the masses have been pumped with patriotism, honouring those who go and die for the freedoms we enjoy. But what happens when that soldier wakes up and realizes that he is not fighting to protect his country, but rather fighting for the corporation, fighting for big finance and the global elite, who want nothing but to destabilize countries who are not yet under their own rule? We saw it with Iraq.

Our minds are opening up to new possibilities about our world, and a lot of these possibilities, like what is happening and has happened in the Middle East, can be extremely scary and disturbing to entertain. These types of realizations have the potential to completely shift one person’s worldview, and that’s not always an easy thing to go through.

This massive shift in consciousness includes many aspects of world, and the geo-political realm is one of them. What we are seeing on a physical level is deception, devastation, and manipulation — but we are beginning to see through it. It’s how we choose to see it that really matters. Do you believe the world is going to hell and there’s nothing you can do about it, or do you see these events as evidence of greater change happening?  These tragic events represent an opportunity, a chance, a necessary step, a birthing pain in the rebirth of the human experience. All that is happening now is opportunities for us to wake up from our slumber and see that now, more than ever, we have been provided the opportunity to think for ourselves, and take our planet back from those who do not have the goodwill of the entire collective at heart.

 

 



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Unintended Consequences of Invoking the “Natural” in Breastfeeding Promotion | Pediatrics Perspectives | Pediatrics

Unintended Consequences of Invoking the “Natural” in Breastfeeding Promotion | Pediatrics Perspectives | Pediatrics: "Whatever the ethics of appealing to the natural in breastfeeding promotion, it raises practical concerns. The “natural” option does not align consistently with public health goals. If doing what is “natural” is “best” in the case of breastfeeding, how can we expect mothers to ignore that powerful and deeply persuasive worldview when making choices about vaccination? If breastfeeding promotion frames the “factory-made” option as risky or unhealthy, what should parents conclude when choosing between factory-made vaccines and boosting immunity “naturally”? We should think twice before referencing the “natural” in breastfeeding promotion, even if it motivates women to breastfeed."



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"What If?" Ron Paul Asks The Two Most Important Words

ORIGINAL LINK

Ron Paul's thought-provoking speech on the House floor from February 2009 seems as appropriate now as it did then...

 

Ron Paul:

“Madam Speaker, I have a few questions for my colleagues.

What if our foreign policy of the past century is deeply flawed and has not served our national security interest?

What if we wake up one day and realize that the terrorist threat is the predictable consequence of our meddling in the affairs of others, and has nothing to do with us being free and prosperous?

What if propping up repressive regimes in the Middle East endangers both the United States and Israel?

What if occupying countries like Iraq and Afghanistan and bombing Pakistan is directly related to the hatred directed toward us?

What if someday it dawns on us that losing over 5,000 American military personnel in the Middle East since 9/11 is not a fair tradeoff with the loss of nearly 3,000 American citizens no matter how many Iraqi, Pakistanian, Afghan people are killed or displaced?

What if we finally decide that torture, even if called “enhanced interrogation technique”, is self-destructive and produces no useful information and that contracting it out to a third world nation is just as evil?

What if it is finally realized that war and military spending is always destructive to the economy?

What if all war-time spending is paid for through the deceitful and evil process of inflating and borrowing?

What if we finally see that war-time conditions always undermine personal liberty?

What if Conservatives who preach small government wake up and realize that our interventionist foreign policy provides the greatest incentive to expand the government?

What if Conservatives understood once again that their only logical position is to reject military intervention and managing an empire throughout the world?

What if the American people woke up and understood that the official reasons for going to war are almost always based on lies and promoted by war propaganda in order to serve special interests?

What if we as a nation came to realize that the quest for empire eventually destroys all great nations?

What if Obama has no intention of leaving Iraq?

What if a military draft is being planned for for the wars that would spread if our foreign policy is not changed?

What if the American people learned the truth, that our foreign policy has nothing to do with national security, that it never changes from one administration to the next?

What if war in preparation for war is a racket serving the special interests?

What if President Obama is completely wrong about Afghanistan and it turns out worse than Iraq and Vietnam put together?

What if Christianity actually teaches peace and not preventive wars of aggression?

What if diplomacy is found to be superior to bombs and bribes in protecting America?

What happens if my concerns are completely unfounded?

Nothing.

But what happens if my concerns are justified and ignored?

Nothing good.

And I yield back the balance of my time.”



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Monday, April 10, 2017

Facebook Buys Sensitive Data about its Users to Offer Marketers Increasingly Specific Targeted Advertising

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Julia Angwin, Terry Parris, Jr., and Surya Mattu report that, since 2012, Facebook has been buying sensitive data about users’ offline lives from data brokers and using this information in combination with the data it collects about users. In turn this allows Facebook to sell the information to advertisers who seek to target specific types […]

The post Facebook Buys Sensitive Data about its Users to Offer Marketers Increasingly Specific Targeted Advertising appeared first on Project Censored.



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Not Prepared: Will Most Americans Be Absolutely Blindsided By Multiple Wars And A Simultaneous Economic Collapse?

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by Michael Snyder, End Of The American Dream:

According to CBS News, an astounding three-fourths of all Americans have to “scramble to cover their living costs” each month. In other words, most of the country is either living paycheck to paycheck or very close to it. But instead of tightening their belts and trying to put something away for the very hard times that are coming, most Americans are completely and utterly unprepared for what is ahead because the people that they trust on television keep telling them that everything is going to be okay. Unfortunately, everything is not going to be “okay”, and when things start falling apart all around us there is going to be a lot of anger directed toward those that have been lulling everyone into a false sense of security.

One of the reasons why I am sounding the alarm so loudly is so that people will not be blindsided by the things that are about to happen to this country. As you will see below, we are on the precipice of two major wars, conditions are ripe for a devastating economic collapse, and if you were to throw in a major natural disaster or two you would have a recipe for the kind of “perfect storm” that many have been warning about.

Earlier today I focused on our looming economic problems, and in this article I want to address the potential for more military conflict in the very near future. When Donald Trump hit Syria with 59 cruise missiles, millions of Americans greatly celebrated, but much of the rest of the world was deeply alarmed.

The Trump administration has said that more strikes are possible, but Russia and Iran are both pledging that “we will respond with force” if any more attacks are conducted…

RUSSIA and Iran have said they will respond to further American military actions following the air strike in Syria last week.

In a joint statement, the command centre for the two countries and allied groups said “we will respond to any aggression”.

The statement read: “What America waged in an aggression on Syria is a crossing of red lines. From now on we will respond with force to any aggressor or any breach of red lines from whoever it is and America knows our ability to respond well.

Do you understand what that means?

If Trump fires off any more cruise missiles at Syria, we will essentially be in a state of war with both Russia and Iran.

Previously, Russia had warned that our two nations were “one step from war” because of Trump’s actions, but the Trump administration is showing no signs of backing down. In fact, UN Ambassador Nikki Haley says that regime change in Syria is now a top priority

The US ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, who has done a remarkable job of continuing the diplomatic tone set by her predecessor Samantha Power, said in an interview on CNN’s “State of the Union” which will air in full on Sunday, that regime change in Syria as one of the Trump administration’s top priorities in Syria. Her statement was a complete U-turn from what she said just over a week ago, when she told a group of reporters that the US was “no longer focused on getting Assad out.”

Some members of the administration are apparently even advocating a full-blown invasion of Syria. For example, it is being reported that National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster has come up with a plan to send 150,000 U.S. ground troops into the country…

As NSA, McMaster’s job is to synthesize intellience reports from all other agencies. President Trump is being given an inaccurate picture of the situation in Syria, as McMaster is seeking to involve the U.S. in a full scale war in Syria.

The McMaster-Petraeus plan calls for 150,000 American ground troops in Syria.

Many special operations veterans including General Joseph Votel have raised serious concerns about McMaster’s plans for Syria.

I don’t know if I have the words to describe how incredibly foolish that would be.

Do we really want to fight an extremely bloody ground war with the combined forces of Russia, Iran, Syria and Hezbollah?

There is very little good that could come out of a war in Syria even in the most rosy scenarios possible, but if things go bad they could go really, really bad.

Read More @ EndOfTheAmericanDream.com



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Not Just Syria: 5 Huge News Stories to Keep an Eye on amid the Madness

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(ANTIMEDIA) The world’s eyes and ears have once again turned toward Syria following last week’s chemical weapons attack and U.S. President Donald Trump’s subsequent air strikes on the Assad government. Mainstream media, independent media, and social media platforms are fixing fierce attention on the ongoing developments.

These events undoubtedly deserve widespread, ongoing scrutiny. From the United States government’s lack of evidence that the Syrian government was behind the chemical attack to the media’s complicity in driving a pro-war narrative and president Trump’s hypocrisy in bombing Syria — after criticizing former president Barack Obama for doing the same thing — further critical analysis of the recent airstrikes is vital.

But even as skepticism toward these events should remain heightened, so should awareness of countless other major developments. Here are five to follow:

1. Trump Appoints Pharmaceutical Consultant to Head the FDA — This week, the president appointed Scott Gottlieb, a pharmaceutical industry insider who has served the boards of multiple pharmaceutical companies, to chair the Food and Drug Administration. Gottlieb currently still works as a consultant for GlaxoSmithKline. He has received $414,000 from GSK, Pfizer, AstraZeneca, Bristol-Myers Squibb, and Valeant Pharmaceuticals. He has also received tens of thousands of dollars in speaking fees from pharmaceutical companies like Merck and Mikart, as well as other corporations — including Goldman Sachs. He has taken several trips through Washington’s revolving door, with brief stints at the FDA mixed in with multiple positions consulting pharmaceutical companies. Trump’s pick follows in the footsteps of Barack Obama, who also appointed a pharmaceutical industry insider to chair the FDA.

2. U.S. Military announces it will deploy 1,500 more troops to Afghanistan this year — The U.S. Army announced last Friday it would send 1,500 Alaska-based troops to Afghanistan as part of Operation Freedom’s Sentinel, an extension of Operation Enduring Freedom,  the 13-year war in Afghanistan. The 4th Brigade Combat Team (Airborne), 25th Infantry Division was set to be downsized in 2015, but the Army’s most recent decision nullifies that plan. The Army said the coming deployment is part of a regular rotation but also said it is a response to “emerging mission requirements.”

The Army also activated 1,500 troops last December for Freedom’s Sentinel, suggesting the latest deployment amounts to the continuation of a seemingly endless war in the violence-ravaged country — regardless of who is president

3. Wikileaks reveals CIA tactics to implant malware in Windows-based computers — On Friday, Wikileaks continued the release of its Vault7 Series, documents it claims to have hacked from the CIA that detail the extent of the agency’s overreach. Ars Technica reported:

Friday’s installment includes 27 documents related to ‘Grasshopper,’ the codename for a set of software tools used to build customized malware for Windows-based computers. The Grasshopper framework provides building blocks that can be combined in unique ways to suit the requirements of a given surveillance or intelligence operation.”

The leaks also included the CIA’s tactics for bypassing anti-virus protection and its use of bank-fraud malware called Carberp. “Once the Carberp source code was leaked in 2013, security experts warned it was akin to ‘handing a bazooka to a child,’” Ars Technica noted.

The leaks follow previous revelations that documented the extent of the CIA’s surveillance abilities, including its capacity to hack into iOs and Android operating systems. Those leaks also revealed the U.S. government was actively working to undermine the security of U.S. tech companies.

The same agency taking it upon itself to hack into private networks has also spent $1 billion annually arming radical rebels in Syria, some of whom have been implicated in the 2013 chemical attack former President Barack Obama used to justify his attempt to bomb the war-torn nation.

4. Tensions between the United States and North Korea continue to escalate — As Trump bombs Syria, the situation on the east Asian peninsula looks like it could devolve into violence, as well. The U.S. is accusing North Korea of aggression over its development of missiles and nuclear weapons — two technologies the U.S. also has at its disposal. However, unlike the United States, North Korea has never used missiles or nuclear weapons against another country. NBC News has reported that the U.S. may move its own nuclear weapons into South Korea as a deterrent to the North. All the hype about North Korean “aggression” should be taken with a grain of salt considering the country hasn’t officially attacked another country outside of Korea ever.

5. Tensions escalate in the South China Sea after Trump meets with Chinese president — Trump was physically meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping while the Tomahawk missiles began dropping on Syria. We cannot discount the possibility that Trump may have been trying to send China a message of military strength and unpredictability.

The U.S. and China have been on a collision course as China has sought to assert itself defensively in the South China Sea. China has constructed and militarized artificial islands, while the U.S. has positioned its navy for a confrontation in the region. U.S. allies like Japan and the Philippines are locked in a perpetual chess match with China as the powers seek to stake their territorial claims to resources in the China Sea.

China is also North Korea’s closest ally and is viewed as the only entity capable of externally controlling the North. At the time of this article’s publication, China is in the process of moving 150,000 troops to its border with North Korea in preparation for a possible U.S. intervention and the subsequent fallout from it.

***

While the United States starts possibly another war against a sovereign country under Trump’s leadership, it’s important to pay attention to other, equally concerning events unfolding in the U.S. and around the world. While the media and politicians heap praise on Trump for bombing a new country and anti-war marchers take to the streets, we must inform ourselves now and take action before further U.S.-sanctioned carnage engulfs the world and before domestic corruption usurps our rights and freedoms at home.

By Carey Wedler and Nick BernabeCreative Commons / Anti-Media / Report a typo



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Hygge babies: Here’s why infants in Denmark cry less than in other countries

ORIGINAL LINK

danish-baby2.jpg

Danish Baby

(Credit: Kletr via Shutterstock/Salon)

A new study published in the Journal of Pediatrics has concluded that Danish babies cry less than babies in other countries, and they have the lowest rate of colic. English and Italian babies cried the most in the study and the behavior of Americans babies fell right in the middle of the results. What could be the reason?

As the co-author of “The Danish Way of Parenting” and a mom to two half-Danish children, I believe it has a lot to do with Danish peoples’ no-nonsense approach to parenting, which focuses on the basics, not fads or “mommy wars.”

Yes, the Danes have a good social system, which supports parents, but I believe there’s more to it than that. What can Americans learn from one of the happiest countries in the world for over 40 years in a row?

Less stuff, more connection

You won’t find a myriad of parenting fads in Denmark that lead new moms to second-guess their natural instincts and navigate a sea of baby products, endlessly debating which ones to buy — and where to put them all! Wooden toys are still the norm, and simplicity reigns. Free play matters more than top gear, allowing both mother and baby to be more relaxed and present together.

“There is a common understanding among Danish citizens of what is good for us,” said Ghita Sørensen of Visit Denmark. “This attention toward what is healthy and good exceeds any high-budget branded campaigns.”

When it comes to what every mom and baby needs, fresh air, low stress and attachment are at the top of the list — not the hottest new gadget.

No mommy wars

Less consumerism and a full year of maternity leave mean that Danish moms can focus on what matters most: calm quiet time together in the first year of life. Comparison and competition with other parents is at a minimum, since there’s wide agreement on what’s most important.

One way that Danish moms are able to avoid comparing and competing with one another is having a shared outlook on breastfeeding. Unlike what happens in many other countries, where there’s a great debate about whether women should breastfeed and for how long, 99 percent of Danish mothers are on board with the practice — and there’s no shaming about this practice or prohibition of the activity in public, either.

To be clear, I don’t mean to pass judgment on any mother’s choices, but rather to point out that comparison and disparagement hurt new moms — just when they’re figuring out how to do the toughest job in the world.

Imagine a culture where moms were supported instead of judged, enabling them to stay centered and trust their instincts. No wonder the babies are calm, too!

Yes, lots of hygge

By now, the Danish concept of “hygge” has traveled to the U.K., the U.S. and beyond. Defined as a meaningful kind of cozy togetherness, hygge offers mothers and babies a special way to bond.

Activities that offer hyggeligt can be as simple as singing favorite songs or sharing a meal without the distraction of cellphones, TV or to-do lists. Powering off screens means powering up the quality time.

Simple is best

When the audio version of “The Danish Way of Parenting” was being recorded, the narrator called me to find out how to pronounce some of the Danish words. She was a mother of five and she told me she had read a great deal of parenting books for her job. “Wow,” she said. “Finally a parenting book that is just common sense.”

What if we non-Danes could come together on some basic ideas that are simply good for us as parents and kids — and as humans? I am convinced that if we could connect and feel more centered about the common good, there would be a lot less crying over spilled milk in general — be it bottled or otherwise.



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Truth Bomb Dropped Live On BBC By British Ambassador Goes Viral

ORIGINAL LINK

by Baxter Dmitry, Your News Wire:

Former British Ambassador to Syria, Peter Ford, refused to go along with the BBC propaganda on Syria and dropped a truth bomb live on air yesterday.

Fed up with the state sponsored propaganda from the very start, Peter Ford dispensed with niceties and disagreed on every level possible with the very first question put to him by the BBC host.

Referring to claims that Assad is responsible for the chemical attack in Syria, the BBC host said, “That’s a statement of fact, right?”

Wrong.

“It’s a myth,” Ford said, his voice thick with disgust for mainstream media idiocy and lies.

“It’s a statement of non-fact,” he continued, immediately rocking the host back on his heels.

“What’s needed is an investigation, because there are two possibilities for what happened. One is the American version, that Assad dropped chemical weapons on this locality. The other version is that an ordinary bomb was dropped and it hit a munitions dump where jihadis were storing chemical weapons. We don’t know which of these two possibilities is the correct one.

“Remember the run up to Iraq. The experts, the intelligence agencies, the politicians were convinced that Saddam had weapons of mass destruction. They produced reams of evidence, photographs, diagrams. They were all wrong. It was all wrong. It’s possible that they are wrong in this instance as well. That they are just looking for a pretext to attack Syria.”

That was more truth than the BBC usually broadcasts in a week. Aware the truth quotient was way too high for his superiors’ liking, the BBC host went into damage control mode, and started reading from the same script CNN and MSNBC hosts use whenever a guest dares to go against the deep state approved narrative.

That’s right, the desperate mainstream media host accused Peter Ford, the former British Ambassador to Syria, of being a Russian operative.

But Ford was ready for that weak jab. Resembling a quiet, gentle man who has suffered one indignity too many, the former Ambassador launched into his counterattack like a man with nothing left to lose.

“I don’t leave my brains at the door when I examine a situation analytically. I try to be objective,” Fordham said. “And based on previous experience, including Iraq, we can see that we cannot take at face value what the so-called intelligence experts tell us when they have an agenda.

“Trump has just given the jihadis a thousand reasons to stage fake flag operations, seeing how successful and easy it is, with a gullible media, to provoke and lead the West into intemperate reactions.

If this interview was taking place on CNN, the satellite feed would have mysteriously dropped out by now and executives would be entering Peter Ford’s name in the ‘Never appearing on CNN again’ spreadsheet. But BBC haven’t learnt that trick yet, so viewers got to watch Ford rail against the phonies for a few more precious minutes.

“They [the rebels – Al-Qaeda and ISIS] will very likely stage an operation similar to what they did – and this was documented by the United Nations in August last year – they mounted a chlorine gas attack on civilians and tried to make it look like a regime operation.”

“It will happen and we will get all the warmongers coming to tell us that Assad is defying us and we most go in more heavily into Syria.”

By this point the BBC host realized he was dealing with a man who was hell bent on speaking the truth, and he could not and would not be bullied into silence with ridiculous accusations. He decided to give Ford the respect he should have had from the start of the interview.

“With your expertise – it’s worth saying, you are a former Ambassador to Syria – with your knowledge of Bashar al-Assad and his regime in that country, what do you think his reaction to this will be?”

Ford said: “Assad may be cruel, brutal… but he’s not mad. It defies belief that he would bring this all on his head for no military advantage, the site that was hit had no military significance, it made absolutely no sense. It angered the Russians. For no other reason, it’s simply not plausible.”

“We will all pay the consequences. The oil price will spike. There will very likely be more use, not less use, of chemical weapons, as a result of this. And, this is also important, the Russians and the Syrians will give less co-operation in the fight against ISIS.”

Read More @ YourNewsWire.com



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Rex Tillerson Just Did Another Huge U-Turn on Regime Change (VIDEO)

ORIGINAL LINK

by Adam Garrie, The Duran:

Nikki Haley says regime change is a priority, Rex Tillerson once again says it is not.

After firmly uniting behind regime change in Syria on the 6th of April, the Trump administration is yet again openly displaying signs of disorganised foreign policy chaos over Syria.

Nikki Haley spoke to CNN on Sunday stating that regime change is the penultimate goal of America’s operations in Syria. In the same statement she said one of America’s goals is also to push Iran out of Syria. So for Haley, it is both a war on Syria and a war on Iran.

Rex Tillerson who on the 6th of April said that ‘steps are under way’ to prepare for US led regime change in Syria, has appeared on CBS and has yet again changed his tune. This is of course the same Tillerson who on the 30th of March said that regime change is off the table.

On the 9th of April, Tillerson spoke to Face The Nation on CBS, where he appeared to back down from regime change and even detailed, quite accurately, the folly of such a policy, the kind he endorsed three days earlier and the kind Nikki Haley endorsed on the same day as Tillerson’s interview.

During the interview with John Dickerson of CBS, Tillerson spoke of America’s apparently re-discovered opposition for regime change in Syria in the following way,

“I think, you know, obviously, the United States’ own founding principles are self-determination. And I think what the United States and our allies want to do is to enable the Syrian people to make that determination. You know, we’ve seen what violent regime change looks like in Libya and– and the kind of chaos that can be unleashed. And, indeed, the kind of– of misery that it enacts on its own people.

I think what we’re hopeful is through this Syrian process, working with coalition members, working with the U.N., and in particular working through the Geneva process, that we can navigate a political outcome in which the Syrian people, in fact, will determine Bashar al-Assad’s fate and his legitimacy”.

Tillerson then appeared to endorse a political peace process for Syria rather than violent regime change, he even said that Russia ought to be involved.

Tillerson continued,

“…it’s important that we keep our priorities straight. And we believe that the first priority is the defeat of ISIS. That by defeating ISIS and removing their caliphate from their control, we’ve now eliminated at least– or minimised a particular threat not just to the United States, but to the whole stability in the region. And once the ISIS threat has been reduced or eliminated, I think we can turn our attention directly to stabilising the situation in Syria.

We’re hopeful that we can prevent a continuation of the civil war and that we can bring the parties to the table to begin the process of political discussions. Clearly, that requires the participation of the regime and– with the support of their allies, and we’re hopeful that Russia will choose to play a constructive role in supporting ceasefires through their own Astana talks, but also, ultimately, through Geneva. And if we can achieve ceasefires in zones of stabilisation in Syria, then I believe-we– we hope we will have the conditions to begin a useful political process”.

Rex Tillerson will of course shortly be in Moscow, that could explain his statements seeking to defuse tensions with Russia.

But at this stage, that explanation alone is no longer sufficient to justify the contradictions which arise when Haley and Tillerson’s statements are contrasted.

Donald Trump may not actually know what he wants and if he does, he has not clearly articulated it to his representative who are sending out dangerously confusing mixed signals.

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