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Sat, 31 Jul 2021
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US government pumps $200M into Aspen vaccine plant in Gqeberha, South Africa

© Gallo Images/Die Burger/Lulama Zenzile
President Cyril Ramaphosa (right) during a visit at Aspen's lab in March.
The US government will pump $200 million dollars into the Aspen Pharmaceutical plant in Gqeberha to expand its Johnson & Johnson vaccine production for Africa.

Acting US Consul-General Will Stevens announced the major investment in an email to the Eastern Cape government, which News24 had seen.

The Aspen Pharmacare Covid-19 sterile manufacturing facility, in Gqeberha, was currently manufacturing 220 million doses of Johnson & Johnson vaccine for African countries. In March, President Cyril Ramaphosa revealed that the number of doses to be produced for the continent would, at a later stage, increase to 400 million. The South African government had placed an initial order of 30 million doses for its citizens.

The production of the vaccines at the plant formed part of the partnership between government and the private sector in the national vaccination programme.

Comment: Buyer beware! If the US is investing in this facility, it has something else in mind. Vaccines have not treated Africa kindly in the past.

See also: Gates vaccine spreads polio across Africa

Eye 2

Fertility clinic SOLD BABIES to single men, with clients reportedly paying for gender & looks - Russia

pregnant doctor
© Getty Images / Blue Planet Studio
Investigators in Moscow have filed charges against a number of doctors at a medical center in the Russian capital, alleging that they ran a secret off-the-books scheme to sell almost a dozen babies from the clinic to shadowy men.

A lawyer representing the doctors, one of whom is the head of the reproductive health facility, outlined the accusations his clients are facing in comments to TASS on Friday. "According to the final accusation, the defendants in the case are charged with 11 episodes of the sale of children, of which eight, according to the investigation, have been completed, and in three cases they allegedly failed to complete the crime."

"As the investigators established, under the guise of infertility treatment, the accused made illegal use of assisted reproductive technologies and, in exchange for a reward, handed over the children to the buyers, violating the foundations of law and order and morality," he said.

Comment: It brings to mind the ban on foreign adoptions Putin instituted in 2012 following a number of high profile human trafficking cases:


The red screen of death

Google alert
© screenshot
Some of our readers may have noticed a couple of days ago that our post entitled "The BBC versus Trump" (not, for the sake of clarity, the full article of the same name by Freddie Attenborough) elicited an excited reaction from their web browser: the "red screen of death". Google had decided that our website was doing something nefarious, and even though they couldn't quite manage to be specific about what it was - and even though they sent me an email alert (thanks!) - neverthless when I loaded their helpful webpage and dug in to to the details they only told me that the reason was "N/A". They suggested we were possibly running a phishing scam, or maybe running malware... they couldn't be precise, but they made certain that our readers knew about it. Nice of them.

But besides making it very difficult for our readers to view our website (or at least, that particular page), the repercussions included the inability to forward our email newsletter to others, the inability to post links on other sites - a reader couldn't post a link to the site under an article in the Times, for instance - and even (comically, at least to me) anti-virus alerts from McAfee. All very troubling to a webmaster, I'm sure. But I knew from the moment I got the email alert from Google that it was almost certainly bunk.

This is a screenshot of part of the alert I received from Google:
Review request
© screenshot/Google

Comment: To ignore is to comply.

Star of David

Over 140 Palestinians injured as Israeli forces use rubber bullets and tear gas to break up West Bank protest

Injured Palestinian protester
© AFP / Jaafar Ashtiyeh
Scores of Palestinians have been injured in clashes with Israeli forces in the West Bank town of Beita, medics said. Protests there have been ongoing for several months, since Israel installed an outpost settlement in the area.

At least 146 Palestinians were "injured by live and rubber bullets and tear gas canisters during the confrontations with the occupation in Beita," the Palestinian Red Crescent reported on Friday. Nine civilians were wounded by live bullets, the Palestinian Shehab News Agency reported, citing a Red Crescent official.

Palestinian media outlets shared images of stone-slinging rioters and injured protesters being stretchered away by medics. Video footage also shows the Palestinians kicking away tear gas canisters.

Yellow Vest

Slovak police unleash tear gas as anti-Covid demonstrators push into parliament in Bratislava

slovakia protest covid
© Facebook / Igor Jurečka
Slovakian riot police launched tear gas on demonstrators in the capital of Bratislava after some of those protesting against Covid restrictions managed to force their way into the parliament building.

A crowd of hundreds gathered outside the country's national parliament on Friday, with some forcing their way inside and riot police deploying tear gas.

Demonstrators could be heard chanting "gestapo" while holding banners saying "stop corona fascism" as Covid restriction amendments proposed by the government were debated by parliament. The amendments would give people vaccinated against Covid easier access to public spaces like restaurants, cafes or mass events.

Yellow Vest

French hospital goes on INDEFINITE strike to protest Covid-19 vaccination mandate

covid passport protest france
© REUTERS/Pascal Rossignol
The staff of the hospital in Montelimar, in the French department of Drome, have gone on indefinite strike to protest the new rules demanding they take a vaccine against Covid-19 by mid-September or face losing their jobs.

The strike against "forced vaccination" was announced on Thursday by the CGT-GHPP trade union, and affects some 200 doctors and 1,500 nurses in the southeastern French city.

Hundreds of them gathered outside the hospital on Friday, denouncing lockdowns and vaccine mandates and chanting "liberté!" (freedom).

Heart - Black

Peru police break up alleged scam charging huge sums for Covid ICU beds

outdoor hospital
© REUTERS/Sebastian Castaneda
Peruvian police have dismantled an alleged criminal ring that had charged as much $21,000 per bed for seriously ill Covid-19 patients in a state-run hospital, aggravating care in a country hit by one of the world's deadliest outbreaks of the virus.

Authorities arrested nine people in an early morning raid on Wednesday, including the administrators of Lima's Guillermo Almenara Irigoyen public hospital, according to prosecutor Reynaldo Abia.

The scam was uncovered after police received a complaint from the brother of a man suffering from Covid-19 who had been asked for 82,000 soles ($20,783) to obtain an intensive care (ICU) bed and treatment at the hospital, said Abia.


Everything is offensive: New study calls on wildlife bodies to rectify harm caused by 'damaging, racist and bigoted' bird names

© REUTERS/Amir Cohen
A new study by researchers based in the UK and US has called on wildlife bodies to do more in recognizing the "offensive or ignorant" names of some birds, many of which are deemed inappropriate due to their colonial-era naming.

In a recent paper, Robert Driver of East Carolina University and Alexander Bond of the UK's Natural History Museum, note that many bird names were chosen in the 18th and 19th centuries and reflect the dominant European perspective on science of the time.

The study argues that many of these names are no longer appropriate in the modern world, even adding that some are harmful and offensive in that they are "damaging, racist or bigoted."

Comment: Who exactly is being "damaged" by the name of a bird? Have people lost whatever thick skin they once had? This is bordering on a mental illness, being offended by every little thing.

Driver and Bond state that many of the names used today were in fact coined by European settlers and conquerors and consequently saw indigenous names thrown out.


Three-quarters of recent COVID-19 cases in Singapore are VACCINATED people

Comment: Yes, 75%!!!

vaccine program singapore

A Singapore man receives a vaccination
Three quarters of Singapore's Covid-19 infections in the last four weeks were among vaccinated individuals, government data shows, as a rapid ramp-up in the city state's inoculations leaves fewer people unvaccinated.

Singapore has already inoculated nearly 75% of its 5.7 million people, the world's second highest after the United Arab Emirates, a Reuters tracker shows, and half its population is fully vaccinated.

It reported 1,096 locally transmitted cases in the last 28 days, of which 484, or 44%, were fully vaccinated people, while 30% were partially vaccinated and the remaining 25% were unvaccinated.

Comment: Singapore is one of the most highly regulated, authoritarian societies in the world. Implementing even more restrictions will hardly cause a ripple. A perfect laboratory to test policies before unleashing them on the rest of the planet.


Tyranny of the woke: Sean Penn won't return to 'Watergate' TV series until all cast, crew get vaccinated

Sean Penn
© imageSPACE /MediaPunch/MediaPunc
Sean Penn
The Oscar-winner has offered to vaccinate people through his nonprofit, CORE

Sean Penn has set an ultimatum on the set of the upcoming Starz Watergate series Gaslit: either the entire cast and crew receive COVID-19 vaccines, or he's not returning to work. Although NBCUniversal, Gaslit's studio, imposed mandatory vaccines for "Zone A" cast and crew members (those in close proximity during production), and provided an on-site vaccination clinic for those involved with the production, Penn is putting his foot down. The actor's representatives confirmed his decision to Variety.

Penn has offered to facilitate the mandatory-for-all vaccination effort, free of charge, through his nonprofit organization Community Organized Relief Effort.

Comment: Hollywood has always been a vanguard for whatever social engineering policies the PTB want to put in place. Sean is just following the script.