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Ron Paul: The 'Twitter Papers' reveal the totalitarians among us

Elon Musk
© The Sunday Times
Twitter CEO Elon Musk
I admit to being skeptical of Elon Musk as a free speech hero. He has moved from one US government-subsidized business to another on his path to becoming the world's richest person. But there is no denying that his release of the "Twitter Papers" this past weekend, which blew the lid off government manipulation of social media, has been a huge victory for those of us who value the First Amendment.

The release, in coordination with truly independent journalist Matt Taibbi, demonstrated indisputably how politicians and representatives of "official Washington" pressed the teams that were then in charge of censorship at Twitter to remove Tweets and even ban accounts that were guilty of nothing beyond posting something the power-brokers did not want the general public to read. Let's not forget that many of those demanding Twitter censorship were US government officials who had taken an oath to the US Constitution and its First Amendment.

It is important to understand that both US political parties were involved in pushing Twitter to censor information they didn't like. There is plenty of corruption to go around. However, as the Twitter Papers demonstrated, vastly more Tweets were censored at the demand of Democratic Party politicians simply because Twitter employees on the censorship team were overwhelmingly Democratic Party supporters.

Russian Flag

Macron: Russia needs security guarantees 'essential' to ending the war

Mac and Bid
© The Hill
French President Emmanuel Macron • US President Joe Biden
As we detailed earlier, a clear division is arising between Europe and the United States over Washington's more hawkish and hardline stance on resisting all negotiations with Russia, but instead which is centered on encouraging Kiev to pursuing 'victory' on the battlefield. One senior European official bluntly complained to Politico last month:
"The fact is, if you look at it soberly, the country that is most profiting from this war is the U.S. because they are selling more gas and at higher prices, and because they are selling more weapons."
Underscoring that Europe is more ready to pursue avenues of negotiated settlement in Ukraine, over the weekend French President Emmanuel Macron urged for the West to take seriously Russia's security concerns regarding NATO expansion near its border. He called for greater willingness to give Moscow the "guarantees" necessary for negotiations to be successful. He called them 'essential' if the West wants to get serious about talks and peaceful settlement. He said in an interview that aired Saturday"
"We need to prepare what we are ready to do, how we protect our allies and member states, and how to give guarantees to Russia the day it returns to the negotiating table.

"One of the essential points we must address — as President Putin has always said — is the fear that NATO comes right up to its doors, and the deployment of weapons that could threaten Russia."
That's when he underlined something which a mere months ago would elicit rage and accusations of 'pro-Kremlin' stooge among Western mainstream punditry.

Snowflake Cold

Without Russian gas imports, France prepares winter power cuts

powerplant
© AP/Jean Francois Badias
Coal power plant at Saint Avold to reopen
On Thursday, French Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne distributed instructions to regional political leaders to prepare the country for regular electricity outages in coming weeks and months. This includes contingency planning for a total blackout of the French power grid.

The government's circulation of the document is a tacit admission that the energy "sobriety" campaign called for by President Emmanuel Macron on July 14 has failed, and that large parts of France face significant electricity and heating cut-offs this winter.

High energy prices in Europe are primarily a consequence of NATO's war against Russia in Ukraine. While EU governments attempt to shift the blame to Putin for Europe's energy shortage this winter, it was their own decision to cease Russian gas and oil imports in the spring, bowing to US and NATO demands.

The instructions were distributed while Macron was in the United States on a state visit. Despite complaining about the ruinous impact of the US's nationalist economic policy on French energy prices, Macron reiterated his government's continued commitment to fight NATO's war in Ukraine against Russia. This includes continuing ongoing sanctions against Russia, even if this means the French population goes cold this winter.

The energy rationing measures circulated in the French government's plan have not been known in France since the aftermath of the Second World War.

Comment: Too little, too late. Time is not on Europe's side.


Attention

Brussels bailing out Ukraine will ruin Europe for generations, Hungary's Orbán warns

Orban
© Unknown
Hungarian President Victor Orban
Hungarian Prime Minister Victor Orbán warned on Friday that European policies advocating for mass joint borrowing among EU member states to continue funding Ukraine's resistance to the Russian invasion will have devastating consequences.

The Hungarian leader told Good morning, Hungary! that EU sanctions on Russian energy are bound to fail, and that "not only our children, but also our grandchildren will suffer the consequences" of a mass borrowing scheme proposed by the EU, adding that potentially insolvent states will require support as well.

Orbán reiterated Hungary's opposition, and suggested that agreements to support Ukraine should be at the national level via bilateral agreements between individual countries, ReMix reports.
He highlighted that Ukraine has now found itself in a situation whereby it is incapable of functioning as an independent nation because of the ongoing conflict, and while it needs help from its neighbors and allies in the short-term, it is not for Brussels to speak on behalf of all member states.
What's more, Orbán believes that any further sanctions on Russian gas or nuclear energy would have "tragic consequences," and argued that Hungary should be exempt from such a decision.

Bullseye

Profound change has come to the Middle East: Russia has learned the lessons, but what about the US?

putin raisi erdogan russia iran turkiyeturkey
© Serfei Savostyanov, Sputnik/Kremlin Pool/AP
Russian President Vladimir Putin, Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi, and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan pose for a photo prior to their talks at the Saadabad Palace in Tehran on July 19.
For the first time since before the colonial era, local players are making their own big decisions and the traditional powers have to adapt

While the world's attention is focused on Ukraine, the Middle East is bubbling under the surface again. No one expected processes there to freeze, but their dynamics are changing. In fact, the direction of these adjustments has been notable for quite some time and it's becoming more obvious.

The Middle East is increasingly becoming a space in which the course of events is determined by the interaction of regional players, and the role of external forces, traditionally very large, has reduced in relative terms.

Eye 2

Highlights from the FAUCI deposition transcript

fauci hearing

Dr. Anthony Fauci
Contradicts, lies, and "I don't recalls" from the nation's most malignant doctor

Today, Missouri Attoney General Eric Schmitt released the transcript of the testimony of Dr. Anthony Fauci. As you might recall, Fauci was deposed as part of an ongoing federal lawsuit challenging the Biden Administration's violations of the First Amendment in targeting and suppressing the speech of Americans who challenged the government's narrative on COVID-19.

Here is the Fauci deposition transcript.

And here are the highlights...

Comment: Kudos to Techno Fog for this eye-opening compilation of Fauci's disingenuous shuck-and-jive act.


SOTT Logo Radio

NewsReal: Twitter Files: US Spies And Dems Colluded to Interfere in 2020 US Election

twitter files musk hunter biden newsreal
© Sott.net
After wailing non-stop about Trump's alleged collusion with the Russian government 'to subvert US democracy', but never actually proving their false claim, the media is now having to eat crow as Elon Musk shares archives of Twitter company emails with Democratic Party operatives and US government agents who colluded to censor the Hunter Biden laptop story just prior to the 2020 US presidential election, thereby misinforming the electorate and potentially swaying voters to make choices they would otherwise not have.

In this NewsReal, Joe and Niall take stock of this unassailable proof that yes, collusion really took place to subvert American democracy, but no, it was not Russians behind it! This courageous move by new Twitter owner Elon Musk, coupled with other viewpoints and ideas expressed by the tech tycoon, suggest that he is heading for a major clash with the American 'deep state' - and he is already warning his Twitter followers that he is 'not feeling suicidal'...


Running Time: 01:57:57

Download: MP3 — 81 MB


Newspaper

Turkish lawmaker hospitalized after mass brawl in parliament

Turkey parliament brawl

Screenshot
An opposition legislator is hospitalized following a brawl that broke out in Turkey's parliament during a tense debate over next year's budget.

Television footage shows dozens of lawmakers from President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's ruling party and from opposition parties engaged in a tussle. Some legislators threw punches at each other, while others tried to pull their fighting colleagues apart.

At least one legislator was knocked to the ground, video images show.

The private DHA news agency says Huseyin Ors, a lawmaker from the opposition Good Party, was punched in the face.

Yoda

Hungary refuses to provide training for Ukrainian troops

ukraine soldiers training spain
© Thomas Coex / AFP
Ukrainian soldiers at a shooting range in Toledo, Spain, December 2, 2022
Hungary will not fall in line with some other EU states, and will not provide any training to Ukrainian forces during the conflict with Russia, Tamas Menczer, the state secretary for bilateral relations, has said. He added that Budapest favors a diplomatic solution to the conflict.

"In some European countries, Ukrainian soldiers are [being] trained. They won't [be] in Hungary," Menczer wrote on Facebook on Monday. "We say no to that. We want to move towards peace, not war," he added.

The statement came after Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban insisted that the EU should "re-evaluate" sanctions imposed on Russia if the bloc wants to get through the continuing energy crisis. Hungarian officials have repeatedly said in the past that Brussels should focus on bringing about a diplomatic solution to the conflict rather than aid Kiev militarily.

Comment: No worries. There's plenty of other countries in the West aiding and abetting Ukraine's forces. Orban has recognized Ukraine for the political- and money-pit it is.


Arrow Up

US bargains over Iran's unrest

The US has voiced willingness to end support for Iran's protest movement if Tehran stops selling drones to Moscow and makes concessions on its nuclear program.
Demented Brandon
© The Cradle
There is a long history of western powers fuelling public unrest in Iran, even pre-dating the establishment of the Islamic Republic. But what makes the on-going protests since mid-September unique is that Washington is also signalling interest in reaching an accommodation with Tehran under certain conditions.

Iran's Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian stated explicitly on 5 December that the US and a number of other western countries have incited riots, because "one of the US' objectives was to force Iran to make big concessions at the negotiating table" for the revival of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), also known as the Iran nuclear deal.

Amir-Abdollahian's remark followed some megaphone diplomacy by US special envoy on Iran Rob Malley several days earlier. Speaking at a conference in Rome, Malley made the sensational disclosure that Washington is currently more focused on Tehran's decision to arm Russia in Ukraine and the repression of its internal protests than on talks to revive the 2015 nuclear deal:
"The more Iran represses, the more there will be sanctions; the more there are sanctions, the more Iran feels isolated. The more isolated they feel, the more they turn to Russia; the more they turn to Russia, the more sanctions there will be; the more the climate deteriorates, the less likely there will be nuclear diplomacy."

"So it is true right now the vicious cycles are all self-reinforcing. The repression of the protests and Iran's support for Russia's war in Ukraine is where our focus is because that is where things are happening, and where we want to make a difference," he added.