Welcome to Sott.net
Mon, 11 Dec 2023
The World for People who Think

Society's Child


Amnesty International claims both Kiev and Novorossiya committed war crimes

© AFP Photo / Dimitar Dilkoff
Amnesty International has in its most recent report said both the Kiev troops and the anti-government forces could be responsible for war crimes in their "disregard for civilian lives."

"All sides in this conflict have shown disregard for civilian lives and are blatantly violating their international obligations," said Salil Shetty, Amnesty International's Secretary General.

Comment: Kiev has undoubtedly committed war crimes. Chances are the rebels have, too, based on some reports. But this statement on its own sheds no light on what's really going on, where one side (Kiev) is clearly the aggressor.

The conclusion was drawn on the basis of multiple interviews conducted on the ground in eastern Ukraine by Amnesty International researchers. They spoke to both people fleeing the conflict zones and to refugees, who have already found shelter in Russia's Rostov region.

"Civilians from these areas told Amnesty International that the Ukrainian government forces subjected their neighborhoods to heavy shelling. Their testimonies suggest that the attacks were indiscriminate and may amount to war crimes," the watchdog's statement reads.

Those interviewed also accused both the anti-government fighters and militants in the volunteer battalions, fighting alongside the government troops of abductions and tortures.

Comment: Amnesty International, despite the good work it has done, is hardly an unbiased, impartial body. See: Amnesty International: Imperialist Tool

Black Magic

Psychopathic projection: Kiev's Orthodox Church leader says Putin under Satan's influence

Patriarch Filaret

Patriarch Filaret
President Vladimir Putin has fallen under the spell of Satan and faces eternal damnation unless he repents, a top Ukrainian clergyman said on Saturday in an unusually blunt statement that squarely blamed the Russian leader for the war in Ukraine.

Patriarch Filaret heads the Kiev Patriarchate, a branch of the Orthodox Church that broke away from Moscow in 1992 after the fall of the Soviet Union and the declaration of an independent Ukraine.

His church, a rival of the Moscow Patriarchate which is closely linked to Putin, strongly supports Ukrainian nationhood and the Kiev government's struggle to defeat pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine.

"With great regret I must now say publicly that among the rulers of this world ... there has appeared a new Cain, not by his name but by his deeds," Patriarch Filaret said, invoking the Biblical character who killed his brother Abel.

Comment: Paramoralisms abound! Last time we checked, it was Kiev who invaded east Ukraine and started killing their brothers and sisters there.

"Like the first fratricide of history Cain, these deeds show that the afore-mentioned ruler has fallen under the action of Satan," he said in the statement, published on the patriarchate's website in Ukrainian, Russian and English.


10 people killed after a small commercial plane crashes in Colombian jungle

© Unknown
This file photo shows a twin-engine Piper PA-31 Navajo in flight.
Colombian officials say a plane crashed in the country's southwestern jungle, killing 10 people on board.

The director of operations for Colombia's civil aeronautics agency said Sunday that the bodies have been recovered from the flight, which was going from Araracuara to Florencia in the country's southwest.

Col. Juan Carlos Rocha said the plane was reported missing at about 3 p.m. (2000 GMT) Saturday. Officials are trying to determine why it crashed in the Puerto Santander region as well as the identities of the dead.

Snakes in Suits

WARNING: SIPC insurance scam against US brokerage accounts


Laurence Kotlikoff
Renowned economics professor Laurence Kotlikoff says SIPC (Securities Investor Protection Corporation) is an insurance scam from Fraud Street. Dr. Kotlikoff contends, "If you look at the history of their response as it's been discovered, they (SIPC) have been fighting tooth and nail never to pay a dollar. So, the situation is not that we don't have any insurance for your brokerage account, it's far worse. . . . There's a Ponzi scheme discovered every four days, according to a recent New York Times article. So, they can declare a fraud very easily." As an example, Dr. Kotlikoff gives someone who lost $2 million and is expecting to get back at least the SIPC insurance claim of $500,000, the maximum payout. Instead of getting money back, SIPC expects money back from you! Dr. Kotlikoff explains, "So, you are at double jeopardy here. It's not just that you can get totally screwed by a brokerage firm, which is happening every four days because a Ponzi scheme is being discovered, you can also be at great jeopardy by SIPC itself." Meaning, SIPC cannot only deny your claim, but it can sue you for any profits you made beyond your original investment if there are losses because of a fraudulent brokerage. Dr. Kotlikoff adds, "So, they are running a complete insurance scam. It's a disgrace. There is a bill in front of Congress that would correct this, but so far, members of Congress have not pushed it through."

Brick Wall

Locked up at gunpoint, people in Liberia's 'Ebola jail town' are increasingly resentful

© AFP Photo/Dominique Faget
Trapped since officials placed them in quarantine two weeks ago, the residents of Dolo Town are becoming increasingly resentful over their incarceration in Liberia's open "Ebola jail".

Around 17,000 increasingly hungry residents in the settlement, close to the international airport, are forced to queue for rations of rice while soldiers blockade them in at gunpoint.

The usually-packed streets are almost empty, as residents observe quarantine measures in a bid to halt a particularly severe outbreak of a virus which has killed 2,000 west Africans, half of them in Liberia.

Dolo Town, 75 kilometres (47 miles) east of Monrovia, was placed in lockdown on August 20 at the same time as West Point, a slum in the capital.

While the West Point lockdown caused riots, people have largely accepted the measures to contain them in Dolo Town. But their patience is wearing thin.


Having more sense than Hollande, French protesters unite against the suspension of Mistral delivery to Russia

© AFP Photo / Jean-Sebastien Evrard
Dozens of people gathered in the harbor of Saint-Nazaire in western France on Sunday to protest against the French government's decision to suspend the delivery of a Mistral warship to Russia.

Some two hundred protesters gathered by the docked Vladivostok - the first of two Mistral-class helicopter carrier ships - holding banners that read, "Hollande wants to kill Saint-Nazaire. We say no," as well as "Let's deliver Mistral and provide our citizens with job" and "For the victory of Mistral, for our independence."

Organized by Mistral Gagnons ("Mistral Wins"), protesters included Saint-Nazaire city councilors, pro-Russian supporters, and members of several trade unions involved in the shipbuilding industry.

France recently suspended the delivery of the first of two Mistral helicopter carrier ships to Russia due to the events in eastern Ukraine. President Francois Hollande later said the contract had not been canceled and a decision would be made by late October.


Rewrite: L.A. Times reporter cleared stories with the CIA before publication

Ken Dilanian
© www.c-spanarchives.org
Willing patsy, Ken Dilanian calibrated his news stories to fit CIA approval.
A prominent national security reporter for the Los Angeles Times routinely submitted drafts and detailed summaries of his stories to CIA press handlers prior to publication, according to documents obtained by The Intercept.

Email exchanges between CIA public affairs officers and Ken Dilanian, now an Associated Press intelligence reporter who previously covered the CIA for the Times, show that Dilanian enjoyed a closely collaborative relationship with the agency, explicitly promising positive news coverage and sometimes sending the press office entire story drafts for review prior to publication. In at least one instance, the CIA's reaction appears to have led to significant changes in the story that was eventually published in the Times.

"I'm working on a story about congressional oversight of drone strikes that can present a good opportunity for you guys," Dilanian wrote in one email to a CIA press officer, explaining that what he intended to report would be "reassuring to the public" about CIA drone strikes. In another, after a series of back-and-forth emails about a pending story on CIA operations in Yemen, he sent a full draft of an unpublished report along with the subject line, "does this look better?" In another, he directly asks the flack: "You wouldn't put out disinformation on this, would you?"

Dilanian's emails were included in hundreds of pages of documents that the CIA turned over in response to two FOIA [Freedom of Information Act] requests seeking records on the agency's interactions with reporters. They include email exchanges with reporters for the Associated Press, Washington Post, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and other outlets. In addition to Dilanian's deferential relationship with the CIA's press handlers, the documents show that the agency regularly invites journalists to its McLean, Va., headquarters for briefings and other events. Reporters who have addressed the CIA include the Washington Post's David Ignatius, the former ombudsmen for the New York Times, NPR, and Washington Post, and Fox News' Brett Baier, Juan Williams, and Catherine Herridge.

Comment: Hold the presses!! As an access reporter, Dilanian was a more than willing enabler of official spin and lies, including those he co-created. Who knows, for example, how many lives might have been saved from drone attacks had the facts and objections to drone strikes been legitimately reported and truthfully investigated. Shame on the Los Angeles Times for colluding with the CIA by not enforcing your journalist code of conduct, for not doing due diligence on your reporters, for passing on disinformation that taints the efficacy of your own publication and egregiously violates the public trust.

That said, MSM is its own can of inbred worms. Dilanian is despicable, but he is also a sticker-face for a corporate media in bed with the government, un-beholding to the public it dis-serves. "The need by journalists for access to these power centres is one of the key components of this filtering system. If you are not prepared to be chummy with the CIA, you won't last long as an intelligence reporter." -Jonathan Cook

Associated Press...it's your move. And we're watching!

See also: CIA emails expose access journalist at work

Eye 1

NSA's big spying for big business

Throughout the last year, the U.S. government has repeatedly insisted that it does not engage in economic and industrial espionage, in an effort to distinguish its own spying from China's infiltrations of Google, Nortel, and other corporate targets. So critical is this denial to the U.S. government that last August, an NSA spokesperson emailed The Washington Post to say (emphasis in original): "The department does ***not*** engage in economic espionage in any domain, including cyber."

After that categorical statement to the Post, the NSA was caught spying on plainly financial targets such as the Brazilian oil giant Petrobras; economic summits; international credit card and banking systems; the EU antitrust commissioner investigating Google, Microsoft, and Intel; and the International Monetary Fund and World Bank. In response, the U.S. modified its denial to acknowledge that it does engage in economic spying, but unlike China, the spying is never done to benefit American corporations.

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, for instance, responded to the Petrobras revelations by claiming: "It is not a secret that the Intelligence Community collects information about economic and financial matters.... What we do not do, as we have said many times, is use our foreign intelligence capabilities to steal the trade secrets of foreign companies on behalf of - or give intelligence we collect to - U.S. companies to enhance their international competitiveness or increase their bottom line."

Comment: See also: War is a racket: How the Bushes and Bin Ladens made billions$ for the Carlyle Group in the War on Terror, then bought the NSA


It's over: CNBC viewership plunges to 21 year levels

It's over: whether due to the complete domination of centrally-planned markets by a few central banks, whether as a result of HFTs forcing out all human traders and investors, whether due to volatility plunging to record lows and complacency at record highs, whether viewers simply aren't impressed by the new young, female faces that are increasingly taking over the prime time financial TV slots, because people are tired of Cramer's endless "caffeine" high and endless attempts to justify a record disconnect between manipulated record high "markets" and a stagnant economy in which some 53 million workers are "freelancers", or simply because video game consoles don't watch TV, America's interest with finance and the stock market is over.

Exhibit A: The chart below shows CNBC's Nielsen rating for August.
Some observations: for the core 25-54 demo, CNBC's Business Day segment is down every month this year compared to last year, with August's 28,000 literally a step in the abyss compared to last year, as viewership plummeted by a near record 30% (with ad revenue following close behind). In fact, the last time CNBC was up in Business Day year to year was over two years ago, in July 2012.

And the punchline: this was the lowest rated month in the core demographic since February 1993! In fact, in CNBC's entire Nielsen-rated history, there is only one month in history when demo viewership was lower, back in November 1992, when demo viewership was just 1000 less at 27,000.

At this rate, in the next month or two, CNBC should make history when Nielsen reports that its viewers have dropped to a never before seen low, paradoxically enough, as the increasingly unwatched financial channel cheers on the very same market-rigging policies that are forcing retail investors to give up on anything finance-related, and crushing the station into ad-revenue and eyeball oblivion.

Blue Planet

The 10 greatest challenges facing humanity

puzzle piece
© unknown
There are many issues currently threatening humanity. Here are some of the most critical issues that come to mind. Issues that humanity must figure out if it is to survive the current fight against the controlling class. Perhaps at some point we will figure it all out.

Changes never happen overnight; and, as a whole, most Americans hopefully do have a few things in common. Surely one of the solutions is to look for what we all have in common and see how we can all work together to improve things. Coming together on wider platforms is also a key to moving forward.

Here are the top issues and potential solutions.