Society's ChildS


Lia Thomas barred from Olympics: Transgender case thrown out after US swimmer ruled ineligible

lia Thomas transgender swimmer
© USA Today/Brett DavisLia Thomas has lost her battle against new World Athletics' rules
Lia Thomas, the swimmer who became the first transgender winner of an American collegiate title, has had her case against new World Aquatics rules dismissed by the Court Of Arbitration of Sport.

World Aquatics banned transgender swimmers from the elite female category if they had undergone any part of male puberty following Thomas's NCAA win in 2022, an intervention which ended Thomas's hopes of ever competing in women's swimming events at the Olympics.

Thomas responded by lodging a legal challenge with Cas in September of last year, arguing that the rules were "invalid and unlawful" because they were discriminatory and contrary to the Olympic Charter and European Convention of Human Rights.

Cas, however, has dismissed the case after concluding that the rules applied only to World Aquatics elite events or world records, and otherwise had "no impact" on athletes.

Snakes in Suits

Banana company Chiquita found liable for sending money to a Colombian paramilitary group

© Luke Sharrett/Bloomberg/Getty Images
A jury in Florida on Monday found Chiquita Brands International, one of the world's largest banana companies, liable for making payments that funded a paramilitary group in Colombia.

A lawsuit, which was brought to the federal court in the Southern District of Florida, said the banana company should be held responsible for the murders of eight individuals by the paramilitary group Autodefensas Unidas de Colombia (AUC). The group was designated a terrorist organization by the United States, and was known for its violence in the South American country. It was disbanded in 2006, according to CNN.

The jury in the civil case ordered Chiquita to pay the families a total of $38.3 million. The verdict comes after the company pleaded guilty in 2007 to making over 100 payments to the AUC that equaled more than $1.7 million, but a source told the Justice Department that the payments were made under the threat of violence.


Ghana to delay more cocoa deliveries as supply crisis worsens

cocoa beans
© REUTERS/Francis Kokoroko
The world's second largest cocoa producer Ghana is looking to delay delivery of up to 350,000 tons of beans to next season due to poor crops, five sources told Reuters in a further worsening of the outlook for the global chocolate industry.

Chocolate makers around the world are raising prices for consumers after cocoa more than doubled in value this year alone following a third year of poor harvests in Ghana and Ivory Coast, responsible for 60% of global production.

The market had previously estimated Ghana would roll forward some 250,000 metric tons of cocoa, equivalent to about half its current crop. Cocobod, Ghana's cocoa regulator, said the country was looking to roll over "some volumes, but not in those (350,000 ton) quantities".

The country's cocoa crop has been ravaged by adverse weather, bean disease and illegal gold mining, which often displaces cocoa farms.

Red Flag

Soaring coffee prices force Folgers' owner to increase supermarket prices

Arabica and robusta coffee bean prices have been soaring this year due to supply crunches hitting some of the world's top bean producers. It was only a matter of time before higher bean prices impacted major US food brands, forcing them to announce imminent price hikes at the supermarket.

Let's start with our recent coverage of the global coffee market: In markets, Arabic futures in New York have surged, but the robusta prices on the ICE exchange are skyrocketing the most.


Bloomberg lied about Russia forcing African students to fight against Ukraine - Nigeria

FILE PHOTO: Russian servicemen take part in a combat training
© Sputnik / Vitaliy AnkovFILE PHOTO: Russian servicemen take part in a combat training
The news agency had reported that foreign students have been threatened with deportation unless they enlist to take part in the conflict

Reports that Moscow is forcing thousands of foreign students, including some from Nigeria, to fight alongside Russian troops against Ukraine in exchange for visa extensions, are false, the Nigerian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said on Tuesday.

In an article on Tuesday Bloomberg claimed that the Kremlin had adopted "tactics first deployed by the Wagner mercenary group," by which Russian officials "threatened" to deny visas to African students and young workers who refuse to join the military.

Comment: See also:

The prince of propaganda: How one journalist feeds the Western media's hunger for lies about Russia
Stewart's portfolio on MuckRack boasts almost 15,000 articles in over 40 publications. Most of them are about Russia and are written in the same style: a scandalous headline, a manipulative account of events, and a few quotes from controversial experts. Stewart is most often published in The Sun, The Daily Mail and The Mirror - British tabloids that typically pay equal attention to sensationalist themes.

Stewart's articles provoke various reactions in Russia. Some of his writing simply makes people laugh, while some of it annoys readers with its outright lies and insults.

Star of David

Israeli troops disguised themselves as Palestinians during hostage rescue operation - ABC

© file/Anadolu/Getty ImagesIsraeli tank on patrol
The special forces freed four people in a daylight raid on Nuseirat camp in central Gaza on Saturday.

Israeli special forces were disguised as Palestinian refugees looking for a place to live during last week's operation to rescue hostages held by Hamas in Gaza, ABC News reported on Tuesday, citing sources.

Israeli commandos rescued four people from two separate buildings in Nuseirat, a sprawling refugee camp in central Gaza on Saturday. The hostages had been held in Gaza since October 7 of last year, when Hamas launched a surprise cross-border attack on Israel, in which some 1,200 people were killed and 250 kidnapped.

Israeli security sources told ABC that special forces were already in position near the buildings where the hostages were being held before they were given the "go" command by Israeli forces. The mission took place at 11am local time.

The helicopters carrying the freed hostages and wounded officers from the Israeli Police National Counterterrorism Unit, which participated in the rescue operation, landed at Sheba Medical Center in Israel starting at 12:15pm and the last helicopter landed at 12:45pm.

Comment: War is a mindset made reality - a loss before it starts.


Why are U.K. courts still forcing people to be vaccinated?

judge's gavel
Tom' was born with chromosomal abnormalities. He is non-verbal and has never achieved a mental age beyond 18 months, but with his mother's love and care he has made it to 24 years old.

Physically, however, Tom is fit and survived Covid with a sniffle. Despite this, a Governmental health authority, an Integrated Care Board (ICB), has for two years continued to spend a small fortune on lawyers in the Court of Protection demanding, against his mother's wishes that Tom be given the COVID-19 vaccine.

What is going on?

The Court of Protection is a creation of the Mental Capacity Act 2005, an Act made with the intention of giving a voice to the vulnerable. It is a court where life and death decisions of medical treatment can be made and it is inhabited by a select group of judges and lawyers appointed by the court to advocate on behalf of the vulnerable individual.

Card - MC

Mastercard launches its biometric retail payment system in Europe, using Poland as a testing ground

Mastercard launches retail biometrics program
After running pilot tests in Brazil and parts of the Asia Pacific for roughly two years, Mastercard is finally rolling out its biometric retail payments system in Europe. The world's largest payment card company appears to be determined to wean consumers off not only cash, its eternal rival, but also credit and debit cards, its main line of business until now. To that end, it is piloting its Biometric Checkout Program in Poland in collaboration with local fintech company PayEye, which will be providing its iris and face biometric technology.
Mastercard's global Biometric Checkout Program, represents a first-of-its-kind technology framework to help establish standards for new ways to pay, allowing cardholders to use a wide range of biometric payment authentication methods such as palm, face or iris scan. This simplifies the checkout process in store, as consumers no longer need to use a physical payment card, cash or a mobile device to pay for purchases. With Mastercard Biometric Checkout Program, secure and convenient experiences are possible simply by using your biometrics.

"Mastercard is a pioneer of innovative payment methods and drive security, and standardization and Poland is an (sic) perfect place for such a groundbreaking pilot," said Marta Życińska, general manager Poland, Mastercard.

Comment: Don't miss: Visa & Mastercard: The real threat of the Digital ID control system

Life Preserver

Here's what a prepper learned surviving a flood of biblical proportions

Rio Grande do Sul flood
Only 13 months have passed since I wrote an article telling of my experience as a volunteer after the catastrophic storms and landslides that killed more than 60 people in my state's North Shore region. A similar yet even bigger tragedy is unfolding, this time in Brazil's southernmost state of Rio Grande do Sul.

Earlier this month, it rained more than half the volume expected for the entire year in a few days. According to the Brazilian Geological Service (SBG), a rare confluence of conditions amplified by the El Niño phenomenon caused deluges so off-the-charts technicians thought the monitoring equipment was malfunctioning. It wasn't, unfortunately.

Natural events like that happen all the time around the world. Rain season is causing floods in East Africa, with more than 400 deaths and a cholera outbreak thanks to the same El Niño phenomenon. Tsunamis, tornadoes, hurricanes, volcanoes, earthquakes, snow storms - the planet is alive. The forces of nature are constantly hitting somewhere to humble us.


Migrant charged with destroying crypt in 1,000-year-old Dublin church containing mummified remains of Crusaders

mummies crypt michan's church
The mummies at St Michan's Church crypt in Dublin, Ireland
A man has been charged in relation to the investigation of a fire which is believed to have "destroyed" the remains of five historical mummified remains at St. Michan's Church in Dublin.

Christian Topiter, 38, appeared before the Dublin District Court earlier today charged in relation to the fire at the church crypt where remains are housed including the 800 year old remains of a man known as 'The Crusader'.

For the Irish Mirror Tom Tuite reported that Topiter has "various addresses and had a Romanian travel card" and "was detained at a north Dublin station overnight" although Garda witnesses said they were not 100% certain of his identity.

The court heard that Topiter had been living in a hostel about 200m away from the scene of the incident and that around 4pm a tour guide had become aware of fire and raised the alarm.

Comment: The Archdeacon's response isn't much better than the police's. This isn't about tourism money, you fool.