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What is the link between the UK Foreign Office and terrorist groups in Syria? Vanessa Beeley

goingundergroundRT | December 9, 2017

We speak to investigative journalist Vanessa Beeley about her most recent trip to Syria.

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December 10, 2017 Posted by | Deception, False Flag Terrorism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Timeless or most popular, Video, War Crimes | , , | 5 Comments

RT ARABIC ONLINE LEADS ALL ARABIC NEWS CHANNELS INCLUDING CNN ARABIC, AL JAZEERA, AL ARABIYA

RT | December 7, 2017

In November 2017, RT Arabic’s website became the most visited online portal among all Arabic-language TV news broadcasters, including CNN Arabic, Sky News Arabia, and major regional channels Al Jazeera and Al Arabiya.

“In the Arab-speaking world, competition among the news media is very high. RT Arabic’s leadership speaks to the fact that we not only found our niche, but are constantly growing as a result of the trust that our audience has in us,” said Maya Manna, head of RT Arabic.

According to analytics portal SimilarWeb, in November, the RT Arabic website was visited more than 23 million times—more than any other Arabic-language news channel, including Al Arabiya, Al Jazeera, Al Mayadeen, CNN Arabic, and Sky News Arabia. The majority of visitors came from users in Egypt—about 20%. Around 8.7% of visitors came from both Saudi Arabia and Algeria, more than 6.2% from Tunisia, and 5.8% from Morocco.

On Facebook, RT Arabic has 13 million subscribers—more than the Arabic-language versions of other international news media such as CNN, BBC, Sky News, DW, France 24, and Euronews. RT Arabic also leads among its international competitors in the Arab region on YouTube, with more than 660 million views and more than 870,000 subscribers.

In September 2017, RT Arabic marked its 10th anniversary of broadcasting by launching its interactive news project – RT Online. Now social network users can participate in news broadcasts in real time and discuss on air the events they witness.

RT Arabic has been a multiple winner and finalist for various international awards, including New York Festivals, the AIB Awards, and Promax BDA, as well as the Iraqi Al-Ghadir Festival. In 2017, RT Arabic journalists were honored by the National Union of Journalists of Iraq, as well as the National Union of Journalists of Syria.

December 7, 2017 Posted by | Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , , | 2 Comments

How A Dubious BBC Report Gave Israel The “Green Light” For Last Night’s Attack On Syria

Zero Hedge | December 2, 2107

Syrian state television has confirmed that Israel attacked a military base outside of Damascus overnight on Friday, which Israeli media reports involved both surface-to-surface missiles and airstrikes, while Syria says its air defense systems were engaged and intercepted two missiles. Like other recent strikes inside Syria, the Israeli jets reportedly fired from over Lebanese airspace, in order to avoid both Syrian anti-aircraft missile systems and provoking a Russian response. Though the extent of the damage or casualties is not yet known, Syrian media has confirmed material damage to the base, and other reports indicate mass power outages in some of parts of Damascus occurred immediately after the attack, which SANA says happened at 12:30am local time.

It appears the base is likely the same one featured in a November BBC report which showed satellite images detailing the purported construction and renovation of an “Iranian military base” near El-Kiswah, which lies 14 km (8 miles) south of Damascus. As we’ve noted before, the BBC report was dubiously sourced to “a Western intelligence source” and the story was quickly utilized by Israeli leaders to ratchet up rhetoric in preparing its case before the international community for further attacks on the supposed Iranian targets. Israel has long justified its attacks inside Syria by claiming to be acting against Hezbollah and Iranian facilities and arms depots.

Indeed, BBC itself used ambiguous language in saying the satellite images “seem to show” construction activity at the site referenced by the intelligence source between January and October this year. However, the images don’t actually show much at all related to an Iranian military presence, but merely a series of two dozen large low-rise buildings – likely for housing soldiers and vehicles, which would be expected of any state army or sovereign nation.

Furthermore, the very title of the November piece – “Iran building permanent military base in Syria – claim” – underscores the complete lack of evidence for such a claim, which the BBC notes in the article is “impossible to independently verify.”

Yet in reporting last night’s Israeli strike on Syria, the BBC uncritically referenced its own prior unconfirmed “claim” to paint a picture that Israel is actually taking action against Iran and Hezbollah: “Israel has hit weapons sites before, in a bid to prevent arms being transferred to Syria’s Lebanese ally Hezbollah. Arms convoys in particular have been singled out by the Israeli air force.”

And the BBC followed this with:

Last month the BBC revealed a claim that Iran was building a permanent military base near the town. A series of satellite images showed construction at the location of the alleged base, which was made known to the BBC by a western intelligence source.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has previously warned that Israel would not allow Iran to establish any military presence in Syria.

So it appears the BBC is playing war propagandist for Israel, instead of including any level of critical inquiry regarding Israel’s unprovoked act of aggression against its neighbor. In short, the BBC spread what it acknowledged to be a mere “claim” based solely on an unnamed “Western intelligence source”. Then Israel used that claim to attack Syria, after which the BBC in circular fashion justified the attack based on its own original dubious “claim”.

Israeli media and politicians are currently using BBC published satellite images as “proof” that Israel attacked an “Iranian base” in Syria last night. Image source: BBC

Meanwhile, just about every major Israeli newspaper in today’s reporting is prominently featuring the prior BBC report as justification for the latest attack on Syria. The Times of Israel provides one such example among many when it says:

The alleged Israeli attack came three weeks after the BBC reported that Iran was building a permanent military base in Syria just south of Damascus. The British broadcaster commissioned a series of satellite pictures that showed widespread construction at the site.

Or see this op-ed in the Jerusalem Post today which references the BBC report as a watershed moment:

The attack raises several questions. Why wait so long to strike the Iranian base? What did “western intelligence sources” hope to accomplish by publishing information on the Iranian base? Why were the Iranians at the site given time to leave by their base becoming so public? The month’s activity appear to be part of a complex game being waged by Iran to entrench itself in Syria and Israel’s attempts to warn the Iranians off. Whatever was taking place at El-Kiswah had plenty of time to be wrapped up and moved if the Iranians were concerned about it being struck. If the reports about Israel’s threats to target sites between 40-60km from the Golan are accurate then it would indicate that the warnings have been manifested.

And nearly every major Israeli media source is also republishing the BBC satellite images as part of their reporting on the overnight strikes.

As we’ve long pointed out, anytime that Israel carries out acts of aggression against Syria, it can just blame Iran or Hezbollah and escape international criticism or condemnation. International media and Western governments have already demonstrated a penchant for towing the Israeli line whenever Iran can be conceivably blamed as a culprit – evidence or no evidence – this as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has made it official Israeli policy to oppose Iranian presence in Syria.

Yet what key facts do the BBC and others leave out?

On Tuesday Israel’s own Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman said that there are no Iranian military forces in Syria, but instead merely stuck to acknowledging “Iranian experts and advisers”. In comments to Israel’s Ynet news, Lieberman admitted, “It is true that there are a number of Iranian experts and advisers, but there is no Iranian military force on Syrian land.”

Clearly, Defense Minister Lieberman’s statement flies in the face of claims made by Netanyahu in his speech before the UN General Assembly this year when Netanyahu said, “We will act to prevent Iran from establishing permanent military bases in Syria for its air, sea and ground forces. We will act to prevent Iran from producing deadly weapons in Syria… And we will act to prevent Iran from opening new terror fronts against Israel along our northern border.”

In other words, Israel’s top military chief very publicly contradicted both Netanyahu’s and the BBC’s claims of Iranian military bases on Syrian soil, yet the BBC neglected to mention such essential information. Thus, it appears that the mainstream media is preparing us for war… but sadly, this is nothing new.

December 3, 2017 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Timeless or most popular | , , , , | 1 Comment

The Eritrea “Massacre” That Never Happened

By Mela Ghebremedhin | Black Agenda Report | November 8, 2017

Mass protest. Mass rally. Indiscriminate gunshots. Mass casualties and death. These are some of the sensationalist words and phrases used to create buzz and portray events as simply black and white. They are often also used without nuance or context. Recently, Eritrea made the headlines after a group of teenagers walked down the streets of Asmara to voice their discontent at their school being closed. Shouting “Allahu Akbar”, the boys, mostly aged around 14-15, were walking from their neighborhood, Akria, towards the Ministry of Education.

Many Eritreans on the sidewalks, in shops and restaurants, and otherwise within the city center looked on in confusion, particularly with the chants of “God is Great” in Arabic. Generally, such loud, public proclamations are rare in a society long known for its sense of collective tolerance and respect. After some members of the group threw stones at several policemen, authorities dispersed the crowd and fired some shots into the sky. In total, the entire incident lasted several minutes, with no casualties or injuries.

However, almost instantly, reports of the incident were twisted, mashed, mixed and remade to provide an account that was quite far from the reality. One of the most culpable was Aljazeera. Lately, it seems that anything negative is a treasure for Aljazeera. Associated Press, reporting from Ethiopia, the BBC, and others followed not too long after. The statement by the US Embassy in Eritrea, warning its citizens from going to the city center, was also somewhat ironic considering that people in the streets of Asmara are far safer than those in the US, who must regularly confront police brutality and killings, stop and frisk campaigns, regular mass shootings, and general violence.

Ironically, as more time passed by, the more twisted the reports became. By Wednesday, the story was completely distorted. The Washington Post and its Ethiopian writer – with an extensive history of reports on Eritrea that later ended up being debunked – stated that 100 were injured and 28 killed, despite the fact that there were no casualties and no one was injured. Notably, it was overlooked that the source for the claim was the Red Sea Afar Democratic Organisation (RSADO), which is based in Ethiopia and is an internationally recognized terrorist group.

The Washington Post and its Ethiopian writer – with an extensive history of reports on Eritrea that later ended up being debunked – stated that 100 were injured and 28 killed, despite the fact that there were no casualties and no one was injured.

Expectedly, news outlets jumped on the new “fact” of multiple deaths and the story quickly began trending on Twitter. Repeated efforts at clarifying and providing an accurate account of the event were made by Eritreans, located both in the Diaspora and on the ground in Asmara, but they were largely ignored. Instead, self-titled experts on Eritrea and acknowledged regime change activists fueled the fire, and spread inaccurate, false accounts. Others would continue the lies by shifting the source of the youths’ discontent, and also claiming that the Internet, telephone lines, and power in the capital were cut – despite things proceeding as normal in the city. Soon afterwards, almost as expected, the AJStream started sending private messages to many on Twitter, inviting them on their show. Obvious, right?

It is hard to understand how, instead of pursuing the truth or trying to provide an objective, balanced account, mainstream media rejected information or views of people tweeting from on the ground in Asmara, dismissing them as “supporters of the dictatorship” or “regime sympathizers.” What mainstream media failed to understand, however, is that the great majority of Eritreans – regardless of gender, class, or faith – were disappointed and angry towards the youngsters. Eritrea is not a country divided along religious or ethnic lines.

Shortly after the brief, small incident things returned back to normal. Some men – ordinary civilians – did stay out during the night, but only to ensure that there would be no more incidents. Notably, no militia or army personnel were called in to stand guard; in Eritrea, the people themselves have a sense of ownership and civil responsibility, and the prevalent attitude was that no such incidents should happen again. Women even brought them food and drinks, and it was quite telling that both Muslims and Christians were standing together in solidarity and community, side by side. However, on the other side of the world, the media and the Internet were abuzz with fake news and false accounts.

It should be noted that, by law, Eritrea follows a secular system where religious schools and national curriculum of education are separate. The issue with the school being shut down was that some of the speeches by the staff were found to be radical and could have posed a threat to the tolerance and peace prevailing within the country. Similarly, in the past, other schools, such as Cathedrale (Catholic) and St. Mary’s (Orthodox), were also closed down illustrating that this latest closure had nothing to do with discrimination.

According to Eritrea’s National Charter of 1994, “the diverse cultures of Eritrea should be a source of power and unity. The national system should be secular, separate from religion, yet respectful of the equality of religions” (PFDJ 1994:9). This vision was enshrined during the long, bitter armed struggle where people from all layers of Eritrean society – regardless of religious background – came together to win the country’s independence.

In today’s Eritrea, implementing a secular system has helped ensure peace and tolerance in a region known more for its ethno-religious volatility, violence, and tensions. What mainstream media and individuals looking for storm and chaos in a general sea of calm totally fail to understand is that Eritreans have a long history of struggle. Eritreans paid a heavy price for independence and sovereignty, and the people condemn any signs of conflicts, violence, discrimination, or division. Thus, despite the continuous efforts to disturb this harmony, the country remains united and will continue to work toward a society based on peace, love, tolerance, and mutual respect.

Mela Ghebremedhin is a freelance journalist based in Asmara, Eritrea.

November 8, 2017 Posted by | Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , , , , | 2 Comments

The “European Values” think-tank and their list of “Useful Idiots”

By Kit | OffGuardian | October 24, 2017

Just when you think that the Russo-phobic hysteria of the Western world couldn’t possibly make itself any more ridiculous… something like this comes along. This is the europeanvalues.net list of “useful idiots”.

The list is very long, over 2300 names, because it contains the name of every person to ever appear on either Sputnik or RT. Hosts or guests, hostile or friendly, it doesn’t matter. If you’re on the list, you are a useful idiot.

They’ve highlighted some names in yellow, to denote they’re “particularly noteworthy”. Names receiving the yellow highlight – the Russian agent equivalent of twitter’s blue tick – include Harrison Ford, Stephen Fry and Senator John McCain. All noted for their pro-Russian public stance on important political issues.

Also on the list are Boris Johnson’s dad, Barack Obama’s wife and John McCain’s daughter. And while all three of them may well be idiots, I’m struggling to see how they’ve ever been useful to anyone.

It’s honestly beyond a joke at this point. But let’s take a look behind the scenes anyway.

The Think-Tank

The not-at-all Orwellian sounding “European Values” think-tank is a Czech based NGO focusing on fighting…

… aggressive regimes, radicalisation within the society, the spread of authoritarian tendencies and extremist ideologies including Islamism.

Their about page goes into a lot of (vaguely creepy) detail about their logo, in case you were interested, but much less detail about their funding. If you want to know that, you have to read their annual reports.

In 2015, for example, you can see that they received funding from disappointingly predictable list of sources. The European Union, the US Embassy, the UK Embassy and (of course) the Open Society Foundation.

One day, it would be really nice to read the “Our Funding” section of an NGO’s website, and NOT see George Soros’ name.

The Author

The author of the list and accompanying report is one Dr. Monika Richter, a first generation British citizen and child of Czech immigrants. She’s a new face at the programme, having recently graduated from Oxford, where she studied at the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism. The Reuters Institute receives funding from various sources, including Google, the BBC and…*sigh*… George Soros.

Interestingly enough, when Richter was at Oxford she spoke at the Free Speech Debate, arguing against the “no-platforming” of certain speakers because it could be used to censor unpalatable views.

Quite when she changed her mind on this issue, I do not know.

The Report

The fifty-three page long report that accompanies the list is both terrifying and hilarious, with some beautiful paranoid language that reads like the journal of Jack D. Ripper. I have read it, so you don’t have to (you’re welcome)… but if you really feel the need then here it is. It is a masterpiece of doublethink.

In one paragraph she smoothly segues between three points: 1. That Russia illegally “invaded” Georgia; 2. That RT’s “biased coverage” blamed the war on Georgia; 3. That the EU’s own report stated Georgian aggression was a prime factor in causing the conflict. Apparently she is totally unaware that her third point completely undermines points 1 and 2.

Later, she claims that RT employs “conspiracism” to spread insidious messages that undermine public faith in Western government.

For example, RT is accused of spreading the “conspiracy” that the US and UK started the Iraq war under false pretenses – when, far from being a “conspiracy theory”, the WMD-related lies are now an historically accepted truth. Only neocon diehards even try to deny that any longer.

The report also claims that RT spread conspiracy theories about “false flags” which, again, are a point of historical fact. And that RT reports, stating that the US and their allies are supporting ISIS in Syria, were untrue. In fact, these reports have since been shown to be absolutely correct.

She also rails against RT’s reporting of the Ferguson riots, in which they apparently:

revealed a consistent refrain: “the oppression of blacks in the US has become so unbearable that the eruption of violence was inevitable”, and that the US therefore lacks “the moral high ground to discuss human rights””

Now, personally, I’m struggling to see how that statement is inaccurate, but maybe I’m just indoctrinated beyond all hope at this point.

The best parts of the report come when the author is forced, by the unbending hand of reality, to make concessions. These include:

RT does not (typically) lie outright in its reporting, it presents facts in a way that distorts the reality of the situation and leads viewers to certain conclusions”.

And:

For the sake of fairness, it must be acknowledged that despite these malign intentions, RT has enjoyed a small handful of journalistic accomplishments. For example, its coverage of the Occupy Wall Street movement, the Guantanamo Bay hunger strikes, and the 2010 WikiLeaks scandal was incisive, with the former two earning RT International Emmy Award nominations

Which, in a beautiful demonstration of intellectual dishonesty, is quickly followed up with:

However, the critical point here is that RT’s treatment of these events is not motivated by a genuine commitment to principled, balanced journalism, but rather by opportunism to demonise the US government for its apparent contradictions and democratic shortcomings.

You see? Even when their news coverage is good, and nominated for international awards, and tells important truths, none of that counts because they’re doing it for the wrong reason.

She apparently wants us to believe that telling the truth for the wrong reason is just as bad lying. Worse even, when you think about it, because your unabashed use of fact-based arguments lends a seeming legitimacy to your incorrect world view.

It is absolutely bonkers.

Some of the other highlights include:

RT disguises the malicious objectives of this editorial strategy by claiming to uphold traditional liberal-democratic ideals like free speech, critical journalism, and independent thought. RT’s shrewd perversion of these principles through rhetorical ploys like the ‘Question More’ ad campaign – which appears to advocate media literacy, critical thinking, and reasonable scepticism about media content – can seem highly convincing to the untrained eye.

By saying the wrong things RT is “perverting” free speech. The principle of free speech only applies to those with state-approved motives who say state-approved things. By disagreeing with that state-approved consensus you are, actually, perverting your freedom and therefore should have it taken away from you.

If the arguments that multiple points of view are important, and that journalistic integrity and free-speech demand the broadcasting of unpopular opinions, sound convicing, it’s only because you’re not well trained in picking up sedition and propaganda.

Not only that but:

RT uses guest appearances by Western politicians, journalists and writers, academics, and other influential public personalities to boost its credibility. Regardless of their intent, these appearances amount to complicity with the Russian propaganda machine, and thereby render its influence that much harder to counter. RT is not a neutral media platform; per point 1, its raison d’être is to disparage and demoralise the West at all costs, and all content it airs is calibrated to serve this purpose. Thus, even guest appearances made in good faith – e.g., motivated by the desire to offset some of RT’s more toxic and hyperbolic narratives – are counterproductive.

This explains the presence of John McCain on the idiot list, I suppose. Ms Richter seems to think that, even if you go on RT to criticise Russian foreign policy, or call RT biased, or defend the US viewpoint, your very presence reinforces the illusion that RT is a TV news channel, when it’s just a Kremlin disinformation centre. By airing contrasting points of view from every side, RT is able to maintain a pretence of impartiality.

You see, RT are not objective, so they have to pretend to be objective by allowing people to disagree with them on air. CNN and the BBC et al ARE objective, so they don’t need to pretend to be, so they DON’T have to allow people to disagree with them on air. By extension, the more differing opinions they broadcast, and the wider variation of opinions they broadcast, the more show themselves to be unobjective.

The logic is flawless.

None of this matters anyway because:

While the security hazard of the Kremlin’s disinformation campaign and influence operations should not be taken lightly, it is imperative to not overinflate the threat of individual influence agents like RT and Sputnik. Such a reaction is counterproductive: it further empowers these agents, allowing them to claim excessive success and consequently obtain more funding from the Kremlin to expand their operations.

So there you go, even if RT appears to be seriously undermining or our society and values, they actually have no real power and shouldn’t be overestimated. The important conclusion of this 53 page report that an NGO spent $100,000s on, is that we shouldn’t over-react.

One wonders how long the report would be if she had over-reacted.

If I was George Soros, I’d want my money back.

October 24, 2017 Posted by | Deception, Russophobia | , , | 6 Comments

BBC Peddle Fake Claims About India Monsoon

image

http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b0938tj7/victoria-derbyshire-01092017
By Paul Homewood | Not A Lot Of People Know That | September 2, 2017

Just when you thought the BBC could not get any worse.

Standing in for Victoria Derbyshire on her current affairs programme yesterday morning, Matthew Price ran a report on the heavy floods this summer in Nepal and Bangladesh.

After telling us this had been one of the heaviest monsoons on record, he went on to interview Mark Pierce, Save the Children’s Director in Bangladesh, and Francis Markus of the International Red Cross in Nepal. (About 32 minutes in).

It did not take long for him to blame climate change for the floods.

He first directly asked Pierce :

“In a place like Bangladesh, do people start to say things are getting worse, it is something to do with climate change?”

Pierce unsurprisingly agreed, and said that even farmers could see climate change everyday, and see their land either flooded every year or facing drought.

Price then asked a similar question of Markus:

“In Nepal, do people at the sharp end relate this to climate change?”

In reply, Markus talks of immense changes in climate, and states “All the farmers in Nepal are kind of noticing that yields are less and less from year to year”, and goes on to tell us there has been nothing but nothing but droughts and floods in recent years.

Well, as you will all know by now, the UN Food and Agricultural Organisation publish data which tells us exactly what is going on.

First, Bangladesh.

We can see that both yields and production of cereals has been steadily rising since the 1980s. Also, the prevalence of undernourishment has halved since the 1990s, despite a large increase in population:

chart.jpeg

chart.jpeg-1

http://www.fao.org/faostat/en/#country/16

And we find exactly the same story in Nepal:

chart.jpeg-3

chart.jpeg-2

http://www.fao.org/faostat/en/#country/149

Clearly neither the Red Cross nor the Save The Children representatives were telling us the truth, which does not surprise me. Meanwhile the naive BBC presenter has been so indoctrinated by global warming propaganda, that he never even thought for a second that he was being lied to.

As for “one of the heaviest monsoons on record”, this year’s has so far been perfectly normal, with 3% less rain than normal.

image

http://hydro.imd.gov.in/hydrometweb/(S(stqraz451440dcbecbun0x55))/PdfPageImage.aspx?imgUrl=PRODUCTS\Rainfall_Graphs\Monsoon\Monsoon_BARGRAPH_CUMULATIVE_RAINFALL_COUNTRY_INDIA_c.JPG&landingpage=landing

As for the East and North East, where the rainfall has been heaviest, rainfall is bang on average:

image

http://hydro.imd.gov.in/hydrometweb/(S(stqraz451440dcbecbun0x55))/PdfPageImage.aspx?imgUrl=PRODUCTS\Rainfall_Graphs\Monsoon\Monsoon_BARGRAPH_CUMULATIVE_RAINFALL_REGION_CODE_EAST%20AND%20NORTH%20EAST%20INDIA_c.JPG&landingpage=landing

And what about the longer trends, and claims of floods and droughts?

Well, the whole history of Indian monsoons is one of recurrent floods and droughts.

aismr1871-2016-Sep-30-2016

http://www.tropmet.res.in/~kolli/MOL/Monsoon/Historical/air.html

Drought conditions were particularly prevalent between 1900 and 1920, and again in the 1960s to 1980s, when the world was cooling down.

Conversely, the worst of the flooding took place in the late 19thC and 1940s and 50s.

Drought conditions prevailed in 2015 and 2016, but this was because of strong El Nino conditions. Indian scientists are well aware of this connection, which has nothing to do with global warming.

In short, the whole story reported by the BBC is a pack of lies. Indian monsoons are not becoming more extreme. If anything, the opposite is true.

Even Madhav Khandekar, IPCC lead author on extreme weather, accepts that there is nothing unusual about recent flooding in India. In a 2014 paper, he concluded that:

The floods and unfortunate deaths of several dozen people in the Kashmir region of India in September 2014 reignited the debate about increasing human emissions of carbon dioxide and their putative linkage to extreme weather events such as floods, droughts and heat waves. What is missing from many of the media reports and scientific publications on this subject is critical analysis of past weather extremes to determine if there has been an increase in recent years.

In this brief report, past floods and droughts in the Indian monsoon are examined carefully and it is shown that such events have occurred throughout the excellent 200-year-long summer monsoon rainfall dataset. It is further documented that such floods and droughts are caused by natural variability of regional and global climate, and not by human carbon dioxide emissions.

https://notalotofpeopleknowthat.wordpress.com/2014/11/12/indias-monsoon-floods-nothing-new-not-caused-by-climate-change/

In fact, if Price had bothered to check with the BBC Delhi correspondent, he would have discovered that the heavier the monsoon rainfall is , the better it is for India’s economy and many other things:

image

They are finally here, the monsoons, India’s most important weather phenomenon.

After days of speculation about the date, the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) announced on Wednesday that the monsoons had arrived in Kerala. India receives 80% of its annual rainfall during the monsoon season, which runs between June and September.

The monsoon will gradually spread across India by 15 July, bringing cheer, hope, insects, relief from the heat, better farm output, GDP growth and lower inflation.

The arrival of the monsoons is like finding a river after crossing a desert. This year, a deluge is predicted. Weather forecasters expect at least 5-6% more rainfall than usual. This will affect things ranging from bank interest to the fortunes of the fertiliser industry. It will also alleviate the drinking water crisis in many parts by replenishing ground water.

But the joy doesn’t last long.

The hot summer gives way to complaints of “It’s not the heat it’s the humidity”. Meanwhile insects and mosquitoes multiply, bringing diseases in their wake.

As the Indian farmer sows a new crop, the city folk face water-logging that makes it difficult to get out. Sometimes it rains so much, especially in the financial nerve centre of Mumbai, that the city is flooded.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-india-36476535

Full Article

September 3, 2017 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Science and Pseudo-Science | , , | 3 Comments

BBC Claim Climate Change Is Cutting Crop Yields In Africa

By Paul Homewood | Not A Lot Of People Know That | August 23, 2017

image

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b091s7zl

More lies from the BBC Today programme.

At about 44 minutes in, a fairly sensible report from Kenya about improving agriculture methods is introduced with this shameless comment:

Climate change is cutting crop yields [in Africa]

The data from the UN FAOSTAT shows the opposite to be true:

http://www.fao.org/faostat/en/#compare

In Kenya itself, the value of agricultural production has been at record high levels for the last two years:

Of course, these drastic increases in agricultural productivity are due to a number of factors, and trying to unravel a climate signal is well nigh impossible. Not that that will stop grant addicted climate scientists making up their own fake evidence.

One is entitled to wonder why the BBC thought it appropriate to even make the comment they did, instead of giving their listeners the actual facts?

August 26, 2017 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Science and Pseudo-Science | , , | Leave a comment

First tanker crosses northern sea route without ice breaker (Because it is one anyway!)

By Paul Homewood | Not A Lot Of People Know That | August 25, 2017

A commercial LNG tanker has sailed across the colder, northern route from Europe to Asia without the protection of an ice-breaker for the first time.

The specially-built ship completed the crossing in just six-and-a-half days setting a new record, according to the tanker’s Russian owners.

The 300-metre-long Sovcomflot ship, the Christophe de Margerie, was carrying gas from Norway to South Korea.

Rising Arctic temperatures are boosting commercial shipping across this route.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-41037071

There is only one slight problem – the newly built tanker is actually an icebreaker itself, as Matt McGrath goes on to elaborate:

The Christophe de Margerie is the world’s first and, at present, only ice-breaking LNG carrier.

The ship, which features a lightweight steel reinforced hull, is the largest commercial ship to receive Arc7 certification, which means it is capable of travelling through ice up to 2.1m thick.

On this trip it was able to keep up an average speed of 14 knots despite sailing through ice that was over one metre thick in places.

Popular Science has more details on the project to build another 15 of these icebreaking tankers:

There’s a lucrative shipping route between Europe and Asia that has the potential to cut thousands of miles and months of time off the trip. The only catch: it’s covered with thick, ship-sinking Arctic ice.

Heavy ice blocks the Arctic route from December to July, more than half the year. Even with icebreaking escort ships, few merchant vessels run it.

Now, Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering is building the world’s first icebreaker tankers–16 of them–to carry liquid natural gas (LNG) through the route year-round. LNG tankers today have to be escorted by icebreaking ships that clear the way through the Northern Sea Route.

The Yamal LNG project, run by companies in Russia, France, and China, proposes drilling more than 200 wells in the Arctic to produce 16.5 million tons of LNG per year, supported by Daewoo’s first 16 Arc7 tankers. Year-round, Yamal LNG will ship LNG from the project’s Sabetta port in Russia’s Yamal Peninsula westward to Europe, South America, India, China, and South Korea. For the warmer half of the year, it’ll also ship east from Sabetta to Japan and South Korea.

As Russia leans more heavily on fuel exports and the prices for them drip lower and lower, a dormant 17th-century Russian ambition is coming back to life: to open the Arctic year-round.

http://www.popsci.com/worlds-first-ice-breaking-tanker-ships-open-arctic-route#page-2

French oil company Total, who are involved in the Yamal project also have this:

To transport Liquefied Natural Gas from Yamal LNG, which is located in the Arctic and constitutes one of the world’s biggest LNG projects, Total and its partners have designed a new type of ship: an LNG ice-breaker. This innovative solution allows large shipments of LNG to be transported efficiently and at a steady pace throughout the year and without the assistance of ice-breakers. The ship, which is 300 metres long and has a capacity of 172,600 m3, can sail in temperatures that fall as low as -52°C and in ice thickness up to 2.1 metres. Between December 2016 and 2019, 15 LNG ice-breakers will be commissioned. In this article, we delve into this technological microcosm.

http://www.ep.total.com/en/expertises/liquefied-natural-gas/lng-ice-breaker-first-shipment-liquefied-natural-gas

The tankers are certified as Arc7, which is the Russian system of classifying ice breakers and ice strengthened ships. The classification goes up to Arc9 for the strongest ships.

So the fact that the Christophe de Margerie has just made this trip has nothing at all to do with global warming.

It is however a reminder that the French, along with Russia and China, will carry on developing oil and gas reserves, regardless of whatever was agreed at Paris.

August 25, 2017 Posted by | Deception, Economics, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Science and Pseudo-Science | , , , | 1 Comment

More ‘fake news’: NO second secret G20 Trump-Putin summit meeting

By Alexander Mercouris | The Duran | July 19, 2017

That there is an active media campaign to misrepresent President Trump’s actions, and his contacts with President Putin of Russia in particular, is confirmed by the media’s reporting of a wholly fictitious ‘second meeting’ between President Trump and President Putin at the G20 summit in Hamburg.

Reports of this ‘second undisclosed meeting’ are the lead story in news reports in the British media today.  Here is the story as it is reported by the BBC, and here it is as reported by the Guardian.

To get a sense of the paranoia surrounding anything to do with Donald Trump, consider what the BBC’s Jonathan Marcus says about the meeting:

Given the poor state of relations between Washington and Moscow and the controversy surrounding Russia’s efforts to interfere with the US presidential campaign, each and every encounter between Mr Putin and Mr Trump is bound to be carefully scrutinised.

Thus the apparently impromptu discussion between the two men at the G20 dinner inevitably raises many questions. What was President Trump seeking to do in approaching the Russian president? Were matters of substance discussed? If so, why was no formal note taken? And why did the US president have to rely upon a Russian official for translation?

This is all highly unusual, especially at a time when relations between the two countries are laden with so many problems.

Mr Trump also appeared unaware of another dimension – the message that his tete-a-tete would send to other leaders in the room, who must have watched the US president’s gambit with some unease.

As for the origins of this story, it is clear that it originates with a single individual, Ian Bremmer the President of the international consulting firm the Eurasia Group. Here is how the Guardian reports his account of the ‘meeting’:

Bremmer said there was a dinner that evening for the G20 heads of state and their spouses, though not all of them attended. “There were a lot of empty seats,” he continued. “Donald Trump got up from the table and sat down with Putin for about an hour. It was very animated and very friendly. Putin’s translator was translating. I found out about it because people were startled.”

There was no one else within earshot, Bremmer added, and it is not known what the men discussed. Trump was not joined in the conversation by his own translator, which is thought to be a breach of national security protocol. The White House later said that the translator who accompanied Trump spoke Japanese, not Russian, and that was why Trump and Putin spoke through the Russian translator.

Bremmer added: “It’s very clear that Trump’s best single relationship in the G20 is with Putin. US allies were surprised, flummoxed, disheartened. You’ve got Trump in the room with all these allies and who’s the one he spends time with?”

Such was the level of concern that someone decided to bring it to Bremmer’s attention. He said he had expected the White House to go public. “I sat on this for days hoping they would talk about it. I knew last week. It didn’t happen. I’m an analyst; I’m not in the business of breaking news,” he said.

This is utterly absurd. Discernable through the hysteria is what actually happened. During a dinner at which other G20 leaders were present Trump and Putin met and spoke with each other, though the amount of time they spent in each other’s company is disputed (the White House denies it was anything close to an hour).

This is not only perfectly normal. It is what such dinners are for: to enable leaders to get to know each other and to speak to each other in informal settings without their aides present.

No one expects serious business to be done during such meetings. In the absence of aides and with the leaders unprepared and with no formal record kept of what is said, conducting formal business during such meetings is impossible.  To compare such informal meetings with proper summits is ridiculous.

It is universally acknowledged that establishing a personal relationship between leaders is essential for effective diplomacy. That is why these sort of dinners take place. Trump was simply doing his job by making the most of the opportunity provided by this one.

The White House has provided its response to the reporting of this meeting

During the course of the dinner, all the leaders circulated throughout the room and spoke with one another freely. There was no ‘second meeting’ between President Trump and President Putin, just a brief conversation at the end of a dinner. The insinuation that the White House has tried to ‘hide’ a second meeting is false, malicious and absurd. It is not merely perfectly normal, it is part of a president’s duties, to interact with world leaders.

This is obviously correct, and it has been echoed by this typically pithy comment by President Trump himself:

What is disturbing about this story is not so much the gross misrepresentation of this perfectly innocuous meeting.  Rather it is the revelation that the President is being straightforwardly spied on, so that he cannot have a conversation at a dinner party without news of it being broadcast, and having the nature of the meeting completely misrepresented, by the media.

This is straightforward sabotage of the President’s work. One does not have to like President Trump or agree with his policy of seeking a rapprochement with Russia to be deeply disturbed by it.

July 19, 2017 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , | 1 Comment

97% Of Climate “Experts” Promised You The Arctic Would Be Ice-Free By 2014

Climatism | July 16, 2017

NASA ice free

The Argus-Press – Google News Archive Search

Gore Ice free 2014.png

Gore: Polar ice cap may disappear by summer 2014

BBC Ice free

BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | Arctic summers ice-free ‘by 2013’

Guardian Ice free

Ice-free Arctic in two years heralds methane catastrophe – scientist | Environment | The Guardian

Sierra CLub 2013

ICE WILL VANISH IN 2013 – Why Arctic sea ice will vanish in 2013 | Sierra Club Canada

•••

CLIMATE experts have been saying this same story for generations:

North Pole.png

04 Apr 1923 – THE NORTH POLE. – Trove

The Guardian says the Arctic will be ice-free this summer…

Guardian Ice free 2016.jpg

‘Next year or the year after, the Arctic will be free of ice’ | Environment | The Guardian

BACK IN THE REAL WORLD

ARTIC sea-ice is tracking previous years of stable extent:

current Arctic

Centre for Ocean and Ice | Danmarks Meteorologiske Institut

•••

UN / WEC CLIMATE CHANGE SCARE-MONGERING

NOW, climate scientists and their “97%” triad of sycophant orgs are promising you that your Arctic will be ice-free by “2040” – plenty more wriggle-room for their catastrophic predictions to play out…

Screen Shot 2017-07-16 at , July 16, 12.52.16 AM.png

The Arctic could be ice free by 2040 | World Economic Forum

“Expected”, “could”…

That’s the great thing about the future.

July 15, 2017 Posted by | Deception, Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular | , , , , | 3 Comments

Exploitation of children in propaganda war against Syria continues

By Eva Bartlett | RT | June 19, 2017

In December 2016, filmmakers in Egypt were arrested in the process of staging an Aleppo video with two children: the girl was meant to look injured, and the boy was to vilify both Russia and Syria.

Even the corporate media reported on it, including: “The girl’s dress, covered in red paint, was what caught the attention of a police officer driving by, the ministry said.”

The incidences of fakery and hoaxes, however, does not end there.

Also in December, the scene of a ‘Girl running to survive after her family had been killed’ was said to be in Aleppo. In reality, it was a scene from a Lebanese music video, which someone at some point clearly chose to depict as in Aleppo, for the same anti-Russian, anti-Assad vilification purposes.

In November 2014, a clip dubbed ‘Syrian hero boy’ went viral, viewed over 5 million times already by mid-November. The clip showed what appeared to be a little boy saving his sister from sniper gunfire, and was assumed to have been in Syria.

The Telegraph’s Josie Ensor didn’t wait for any sort of verification of the video which she cited as having been uploaded on November 10, the next day writing: “… it is thought the incident took place in Yabroud – a town near the Lebanese border which was the last stronghold of the moderate Free Syrian Army. Experts tell the paper they have no reason to doubt its authenticity. The UN has previously accused the Syrian regime of ‘crimes against humanity’ – including the use of snipers against small children.”

On November 14, the BBC brought on ‘Middle East specialist’ Amira Galal to give her expert opinion on the clip. She asserted: “We can definitely say that it is Syria, and we can definitely say that it’s probably on the regime frontlines. We see in the footage that there is a barrel, it’s painted on it the Syrian army flag.”

Once again, the so-called ‘experts’ got it wrong. The barrel which Galal referred to had a poor imitation of the flag of Syria painted on it, the flag’s color sequence out of order. The clip she was so certain had been filmed in government areas of Syria was actually produced in Malta by Norwegian filmmakers.

From Video to Twitter Hoaxes

In the propaganda war on Syria, there are convincing lies, and then there are the blindingly clear hoaxes. In the latter realm, the Bana al-Abed Twitter persona takes first prize. The child is being abused by her own family who have seemingly forced her to pretend she can speak English (she cannot).

We were meant to believe that sophisticated and nuanced tweets, often calling for Western intervention, are coming from an English-illiterate seven-year-old girl or her mother — whose husband was a militant in Aleppo.

In a detailed article, Barbara McKenzie looks at the campaign which uses the brand Bana for war propaganda. An excerpt includes: “Bana, the little girl supposedly tweeting from Aleppo, but actually the front for an account run from London, was selected to be the empathetic face of the campaign for a no-fly zone in Syria. Her account was tailored to create the impression of perpetual bombing, perpetual war crimes, on the part of Russia and the Syrian government.”

Bana not only tweeted with impossible frequency from eastern Aleppo, defying any internet lapses those of us who have gone to Aleppo have experienced. Whatever the actual explanation for her alleged preciousness and high-tech abilities, the child was clearly exploited, and continues to be.

Her twitter account continues its advocacy for Western intervention in Syria. Not at all suspicious.

Real Poster Children Brutally Beheaded, Sniped, Starved, Maimed

Effective war propaganda tugs at the heart strings, using many tactics, including adorable children in threatening situations, or dead, and comes hand in hand with condemnations for crimes committed, allegedly, by the villain(s) being caricatured. In the following instances, children being injured or murdered did occur, but the condemnations were muted or not at all.

A few weeks prior to the photo of Omran Daqneesh going viral as the poster child for suffering in Syria, terrorists of the Nour al-Din al-Zenki faction beheaded a boy said to be around 12 years old.

Although the decapitators filmed the entire savage act, posing for gleeful selfies as they tortured the boy prior to murdering him, leaders and media in the US took little notice of the horrific slaughter. Ten days after the questionable events which led to the light injury of Omran, two young boys in the Idlib villages of Foua and Kafraya were shot in their head and neck respectively by a sniper from Jaysh al-Fateh terrorists in the village of Binnish close by. The injuries were serious. They were rendered even more serious given that the villages had been completely surrounded and fully under siege by terrorists since March 2015.

In April 2017, a convoy of children, women, elderly and ill being evacuated from Foua were attacked by a terrorist explosion, with reports over 200 murdered, including 116 children. The attack included luring with potato chips and filming children in the convoy before later blowing them up and claiming to be rescuing them. Not only did these terrorists murder civilians and children, but they staged the scene to then look like heroes.

Indeed, in the West this massacre was called a “hiccup” and little denunciation was made about the vast numbers of dead, let alone the injured.

In October, 2016, Press TV was one of the few outlets to report on another adorable Aleppo boy, Mahmoud, “a six-year-old Syrian boy who was born without arms, and recently lost both of his legs after stepping on a mine planted by militants in Syria’s Aleppo.” The report includes scenes of Mahmoud showing his resilience, adjusting to life without any limbs. But for corporate media, Mahmoud’s were the wrong villains.

Terrorist bombings and snipings have killed children in schools and homes throughout Syria over the years, including the October 2014 terrorist car and suicide bombing of the Akrama Al-Makhzoumi School in Homs, killing at least 41 children by conservative estimates, or up to 48 children by other reports, along with women and other civilians, as well as attacks on Aleppo schools, as I detailed earlier.

In Aleppo and in Damascus, I have visited numerous hospitals and seen endless poster children of suffering in Syria. The differences between these children and those which Western and Gulf media present us, is that these children were murdered, rendered critically-injured, or maimed by the bombs, mortars and snipings of terrorists which the West presents as “moderate rebels”, so their stories will never be front page, much less heard.

The Bitter Truth

The Western and Gulf media work in lockstep with the narratives emanating from Washington on Syria. It is not coincidental that certain photos and stories of Syrian children go viral, while other more damning photos and sordid realities get no notice period.

Regarding the Omran case, we now know that he was not gravely hurt as media tried to imply, that his family have gone back to their lives in Aleppo, and the exploitation and lies around Omran cannot continue.

When I met them on June 6th, they showed no signs of the duress which terrorists and their backers—which include Western corporate media—claim. Instead, some neighbors were over, discussing media fabrications around Omran.

However, the children who are believed to have been exploited and used in the 2013 Ghouta chemical weapons fabrications remain missing and have not gone back to their lives, nor have their families in the Latakia countryside.

In March 2017, physicians with Swedish Doctors for Human Rights, after examining a White Helmet’s video, wrote: “… Swedish medical doctors, specialists in various fields, including pediatrics, have revealed that the life-saving procedures seen in the film are incorrect – in fact life-threatening – or seemingly fake, including simulated resuscitation techniques being used on already lifeless children.”

The article noted that Dr Lena Oske, a Swedish medical doctor and general practitioner, said of an adrenaline injection shown in the video, “If not already dead, this injection would have killed the child!”

While in al-Waer, Homs, on June 9, 2017, speaking with a woman who had returned not long after the last terrorist had been bused out in the government’s reconciliation agreement, she told me a story of her friend from the area. Bearing in mind that this is second hand information (and that I didn’t have time to stay another day to meet the friend in question), I’ll leave her words and this 2012 link as food for thought regarding the use of children, alive or day, for war propaganda against Syria: “In 2014, my friend’s son, Louay was leaving his school. A mortar fell on the street nearby and he was hit with shrapnel. The Red Crescent took him in an ambulance to al-Bour, a nearby aid association, which couldn’t treat him, so he was taken to a government hospital in al-Zahra’a. They tried to save him, but he died.

They took him back to al-Bour where they cleaned him for burial. While my friend was waiting, people from al-Bour carried him onto the street yelling the regime killed him, look what the regime does to children.'”

Later, she saw on both al-Jazeera and al-Arabiya footage of her son, with men blaming the “regime” for killing children in Syria.

But she didn’t agree. The government helped her son and tried to save his life. He was 7 years old.

Eva Bartlett is a freelance journalist and rights activist with extensive experience in the Gaza Strip and Syria. Her writings can be found on her blog, In Gaza.

June 19, 2017 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , , | Leave a comment

Such a “Surprise” in the UK!

By Thomas S. Harrington | CounterPunch | June 12, 2017

I just can’t believe what happened in the British elections.

I can’t get over the fact that that when a politician with real convictions honed over 40 years of political life—generous and forward-looking convictions rooted in an understanding of how social progress for the many has actually been engineered in previous times—speaks out unencumbered by corporate-minded, fraidy-cat image doctors, people actually respond enthusiastically.

It’s shocking, absolutely shocking.

Why am I so confused?

Well, for thirty years, the brilliant people at the NYT, NPR,  PBS,  the BBC and The Guardian  have told me again and again that candidates from Labor in the UK and the Democratic Party  in the US must always  be oh-so-careful careful to not veer too far left in their policy prescriptions,  to not appear too “populist” and, most of all, to not to go “too far outside the mainstream”.

The question of who defines what is the mainstream, or how lavishly-funded pro-business and pro-war think-tanks might actually be the people establishing its functional parameters by funding armies of think-tank “scholars” and “experts” were, of course, a complex hermeneutical problems that I never had the time  nor the energy to ponder or deconstruct.

If those smart Ivy and Oxbridge-type guys and gals in the prestige media were telling us time and again that our societies were all fundamentally center-right collectives with a deep suspicion of government action (except, that is, when it came to making unceasing war on a world-wide scale) who was I, an obscure analyst of Iberian nationalisms and other sundry issues, to say anything about it?

Can you imagine someone like me actually believing he had the right to question brilliant and connected people like David Brooks, Tom Friedman or Jonathan Freeland or Polly Toynbee?

It would have been the height of hubris on my part to do so. After all, unlike them, I don’t spend my time networking each day with ambitious like-minded people deeply enamored of power, nor do I have the option of knowing exactly what stories and messages will provoke society’s centers of financial and military power to pressure a media conglomerate to trim a pundit’s  paycheck or to convince well-heeled seekers of transcendent insight  to stop paying her fat speaking fees.

Because I lack this essential information, I have always assumed my rightful place as an uncritical consumer of their deeply though-out and always prescient nostrums.

True, today I am feeling a little confused and bereft. But I know that by the time the next news cycle comes around they’ll have it all figured out for me, providing explanations that will in no way contradict or vitiate all the brilliant things they’ve been saying over so many years.

June 12, 2017 Posted by | Aletho News | , , , , , , | Leave a comment