While we react with fear to the resurgence of fascist, Nazi or Japanese imperial groups, we fail to see that it was not these ideologies that provoked World War, but the alliance of rulers ready for the worst. The same configuration is about to be repeated with other groups. In a few months, if we do not react now, a Third World War may be possible.
The Second World War can serve as a lesson to us. It did not appear in a serene sky. It was not a battle of the Good guys against the Bad guys. It was just triggered by an unforeseen gathering of forces capable of destroying everything.
After the economic crisis of 1929, the whole world was convinced, and rightly so, that the capitalism of that time was over. The Soviet Union alone offered an alternative, Bolshevism. Soon the United States came up with a second alternative, the structural reforms of the New Deal, and then Italy promoted a third alternative, fascism. The great Anglo-Saxon capitalists chose to support a new regime, close to fascism, Nazism. They thought that Germany would attack the USSR, thus preserving their interests threatened by both Bolshevik collectivisations and US economic reforms. However, nothing worked out as planned, since Italy, Germany and Japan formed the Axis with their own logic and the war was not started against the Soviets, but against the great fortunes that prepared it.
In the collective imagination, we do not hold responsible the great Anglo-Saxon capitalists who supported Nazism at its beginning. On the contrary, we remember the British and American people as having participated in the victory.
From this experience we must learn that the most skilful plans can escape their promoters. Peace was threatened by the alliance of three very different regimes, Fascism, Nazism and Hakkō ichiu. None of the international relations scholars and other geopoliticians of the time foresaw this union. All of them, without exception, were wrong.
What these three ideologies had in common was that they wanted to change the world order without regard to the human consequences of their actions. This does not mean that their opponents were democratic and peaceful, far from it, but only that they refrained from exterminating entire peoples.
Let’s not mistake the adversary. We must be very vigilant, not to a particular type of political regime, but to the fact that states governed by men capable of the worst ever unite. The current danger is neither fascism, nor Nazism, nor Hakkō ichiu, three ideologies marked by their time and which do not correspond to anything today. What we must protect ourselves from, above all, is a global alliance between ideologies capable of the worst.
This is exactly what is about to happen: the current leaders of the US State Department, the government in Kiev and the next government in Tel Aviv have no limits. The union of the "Straussians", the Ukrainian "integral" nationalists and the Israeli "revisionist Zionists" can, without any qualms, plunge the world into a Third World War. Fortunately, the CIA does not share their ideas, the government in Kiev is constrained by Russian military intervention, and the Israeli Prime Minister’s coalition has not yet formed its government.
Professor Leo Strauss (1899-1973). Although he wrote extensively on natural law and Jewish philosophy, he left nothing about his political conceptions, which he reserved for certain of his students. Numerous testimonies have made his "oral" thought known to us.
The U.S. "Straussians”
This small group of about a hundred people controls the foreign policy of the United States, including the Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, his deputy, Victoria Nuland, and the National Security Advisor, Jacob Sullivan.
It is in line with the thinking of the Jewish philosopher Leo Strauss "Russia declares war on the Straussians” for whom democracies showed their weaknesses during the 1930s. The only way to ensure that the next anti-Semitic regime does not massacre them is for the Jews to set up their own dictatorship; to be on the side of the hammer and not of the nail.
The "Straussians" have already shown what they are capable of by organizing the 9/11 attacks and by launching various wars to destroy the "wider Middle East".
It is amazing that, despite the controversies that tore the US ruling class apart during the Bush Jr. administration, most of today’s politicians are unaware of who the Straussians are.
The poet Dmytro Dontsov (1883-1973). He created a mythology that inspired millions of Ukrainians to fight the Russians. A secret agent of the Second and Third German Reichs, he participated in the supervision of the extermination of Jews and Gypsies in Europe as administrator of the Reinhard Heydrich Institute, before being whitewashed by the Anglo-Saxon secret services.
The Ukrainian "integral nationalists”
This is a group comprising hundreds of thousands of people, perhaps millions. It originated in the First World War, but solidified during the interwar period, the Second World War and the Cold War “Who are the Ukrainian integral nationalists ?”.
They identify with the poet and criminal against humanity Dmytro Dontsov. They see themselves as Vikings ready to fight the last battle against evil, that is, according to them, against Russian civilization.
The term "integral nationalist" should not be misleading. Dontsov chose it in reference to the thought of the Frenchman Charles Maurras. Dontsov was never a patriot, nor a nationalist in the classical sense. He never defended either the Ukrainian people or the Ukrainian land. On the contrary.
The Ukrainian "integral nationalists" have, since 1919, shown what they are capable of. They have murdered more than 4 million of their fellow citizens, including 1.6 million Jews. Since 2014, they have waged a civil war that has cost the lives of about 20,000 of their fellow citizens. They also, in 1921, amputated their land from Galicia and Volhynia to pay in advance the Polish army against the USSR.
They made an alliance with the Straussians, in 2000, during a big congress in Washington, where the Straussian Paul Wolfowitz was the guest of honor.
It is very dangerous to claim, as NATO does, that the "integral nationalists" are marginal in Ukraine. Certainly, in the spirit of this organization, it is only a question of discrediting Russia’s discourse and mobilizing for Ukraine. But these people are now murdering, without trial, those of their fellow citizens who find themselves in Russian culture.
It is particularly dangerous to participate in the delirium of the "integral nationalists" as the Bundestag has just done by adopting a resolution on the "Holodomor", i.e. the "genocide by hunger". The famine of 1932-33 was by no means caused by the Soviets in general, nor by Joseph Stalin in particular. It affected many other regions of the USSR than Ukraine. It is a climatic catastrophe. Moreover, in Ukraine itself, it did not affect the cities, but only the countryside because the Soviets decided to manage this shortage by feeding the workers rather than the peasants. To give credence to the myth of a planned genocide is to encourage anti-Russian hatred as the Nazis once encouraged anti-Jewish hatred.
Vladimir Jabotinsky (1880-1940), founder of the Jewish Legion, then of the Irgun. He called for Israel to extend over the entire British Mandate territory, i.e. over the current State of Israel, the Palestinian Territories and the Kingdom of Jordan.
Israeli "revisionist Zionists”
The "revisionist Zionists" represent about 2 million Israelis. They have managed to form a parliamentary majority by uniting several political parties behind Benjamin Netanyahu.
They claim to be inspired by the Ukrainian Vladimir Jabotinsky, the man who claimed that Palestine is "a land without a people, for a people without a land". In other words, Palestinian Arabs do not exist. They have no rights and must be expelled from their homes.
In September 1921, Jabotinsky formed a secret alliance with the Ukrainian "integral nationalist" anti-Semites, the first link in the developing Axis. This union aroused the indignation of the entire Jewish diaspora and Jabotinsky was expelled from the World Zionist Organization. In October 1937, Jabotinsky formed a new alliance with the anti-Semites of Marshal Rydz-Smigly, number 2 in Poland behind Józef Piłsudski. He was again rejected by the Jewish diaspora.
At the very beginning of World War II, Jabotinsky chose Bension Netanyahu, Benjamin’s father, as his private secretary.
It is appalling that, 75 years after the establishment of the State of Israel, most people continue to lump together different, and often opposing, views solely on the basis of the religion of those who profess them.
Revisionist Zionism" is the opposite of the Zionism of Nahum Goldman and the World Jewish Congress. It has no concern for the Jewish people and has therefore not hesitated to form alliances with anti-Semitic armed forces.
The "revisionist Zionists", including Menahem Beguin and Ariel Sharon, have shown what they are capable of with the Nakba; the forced expulsion of the majority of the Arab population of Palestine in 1948. It is this crime, whose memory haunts both Arabs and Israelis, that makes peace in Palestine impossible to this day.
Benjamin Netanyahu formed an alliance with the Straussians in 2003 at a large closed-door congress in Jerusalem «Sommet historique pour sceller l’Alliance des guerriers de Dieu». Since the election of Volodymyr Zelensky, of whom he has become a personal friend, Netanyahu has also renewed Jabotinsky’s alliance with the "integral nationalists".
The Axis is constituted.
The common ideology of the new Axis
Just as Italian Fascism, German Nazism, and Japanese Hakkō ichiu had little to do with each other, so did the Straussians, the "integral nationalists," and the "revisionist Zionists" think differently and pursue distinct goals. Only the Nazis were so anti-Semitic as to seek to kill an entire people. The fascists despised the Jews, but did not seek to exterminate them. The Japanese never engaged in this hatred and even protected the Jews in their own country and in the territories they occupied. In the same way, today if the "integral nationalists" are obsessively against Russian culture and wish to kill all Russians, men, women and children, the Straussians despise them without wishing to exterminate them, and the "revisionist Zionists" pursue other objectives.
Each of these three isolated groups represents a danger to specific populations, but all three together threaten all of humanity. They share a cult of violence and power. They have shown that they can engage in wars of extermination. All three consider that their time has come. However, not only do they have to overcome their internal oppositions, but their axis is still uncertain. For example, the Straussians have just warned the "revisionist Zionists" about the possible expansion of Jewish settlements in the Palestinian territories.
Forensic Architecture working with Al-Haq's new Forensic Architecture Investigation Unit, analysed available CCTV footage from Al-Haq premises to determine the circumstances of the raid on 18 August 2022, and expose Israeli settler-colonial and apartheid practices against Palestinian civil society and human rights organizations.
The incursion, raid, and closure, are the latest in a pattern of repressive attacks by Israel, targeting Palestinian civil society organisations who advocate for human rights and international rule of law, and call for an end to Israel’s aggressive 74-year colonial and apartheid regime, that denies the collective right to self-determination of the Palestinian people and the right of refugees to return.
Unseen footage in the new investigation by Forensic Architecture and Al-Haq’s Forensic Architecture Investigation Unit reveals new evidence on the killing of Al-Jazeera reporter Shireen Abu Aqleh. Findings disclose how the journalists were targeted by the Israeli Occupying Forces marksmen.
“I’m not going to arm wrestle with the administration about where to put you,” Dr. C., a highly skilled gastroenterologist, said gently to my friend who was in bed in a triage room in the ER. “We just want to get you into a bed so we can figure out what’s wrong and get you treated.”
We were at our small town’s hospital. No one was sure why, but my friend had not been able to keep anything more than a handful of raspberries down since a complicated surgery for a chronic health condition three weeks before. Dehydrated and unable to eat, my friend had been violently vomiting after taking just a sip of water or sucking on an ice chip, and had lost nearly twenty-five pounds.
I was by my husband’s side when he had a gallbladder attack so severe that it left his hands shaking. I’ve had three unmedicated childbirths and attended many more, both as a journalist and a patient advocate. Still, I’ve never seen a human in so much pain.
Diagnosed with a Pancreas Disorder, Admitted as a COVID Patient
After a battery of testing, my friend was diagnosed with pancreatitis. But it was easier for the hospital bureaucracy to register the admission as a COVID case.
Let me explain. This patient had none of the classic symptoms of COVID: No shortness of breath, no fever, no chills, no congestion, no loss of sense of smell or taste, no neurological issues. The only COVID symptoms my friend had were nausea and fatigue, which could also be explained by the surgery. However, nearly three weeks earlier, a COVID test had come back positive.
The mainstream media is reporting that severe COVID cases are mainly among unvaccinated people. An Associated Press headline from June 29 reads: “Nearly all COVID deaths in US are now among unvaccinated.” Another, from the same date: “Vast majority of ICU patients with COVID-19 are unvaccinated, ABC News survey finds.”
Is that what’s really going on? It’s certainly not the case in Israel, the first country to fully vaccinate a majority of its citizens against the virus. Now it has one of the highest daily infection rates and the majority of people catching the virus (77 percent to 83 percent, depending on age) are already vaccinated, according to data collected by the Israeli government.
After carefully reviewing the available data, including the safety and efficacy profiles of the mRNA vaccines, my friend had taken a cautious approach. Though a medical doctor who gives vaccines in the office every day, my friend opted to wait and see. According to WebMD, a “huge number” of frontline hospital workers have also chosen not to get the vaccine. Indeed, various news reports, from California to New York, confirm that up to 40 percent of health care workers have decided the risks of the vaccines do not outweigh the benefits.
After admission, I spoke to the nurse on the COVID ward. She was suited up in a plastic yellow disposable gown, teal gloves, and two masks underneath a recirculating personal respiratory system that buzzed so loudly she could barely hear. The nurse told me that she had gotten both vaccines but she was feeling worried: “Two thirds of my patients are fully vaccinated,” she said.
How can there be such a disconnect between what the COVID ward nurse told me and the mainstream media reports? For one thing, it is very hard to get any kind of accuracy when it comes to actual numbers. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have publicly acknowledged that they do not have accurate data.
As reported by the Associated Press, “The CDC itself has not estimated what percentage of hospitalizations and deaths are in fully vaccinated people, citing limitations in the data.”
At the same time, data collection is done on a state by state basis. In most states, a person is only considered fully vaccinated fourteen days after they have had the full series of the vaccine.
This means that anyone coming into an American hospital who has only had one dose, or who has had both vaccines but had the second one less than two weeks prior, will likely be counted as “unvaccinated.”
So when the South Carolina’s Department of Health and Environmental Control released a report about COVID severity on July 23, 2021, they reported higher morbidity and mortality rates in the “not fully vaccinated.” Are these people who have had one vaccine and gotten sick, two vaccines and gotten sick, or no vaccines at all? Without more details, it is impossible to know what is really going on.
“We don’t have accurate numbers,” insists Dr. James Neuenschwander, an expert on vaccine safety based in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
But what we do know, Neuenschwander says, is that the vaccines are not as effective as public health officials told us they would be. “This is a product that’s not doing what it’s supposed to do. It’s supposed to stop transmission of this virus and it’s not doing that.”
Then there is the problem of attributing severe illness and deaths from other causes to COVID, like in my friend’s case. Health authorities around the world have been doing this since the beginning of the COVID crisis. For example, a young man in Orange County, Florida who died in a motorcycle crash last summer was originally considered a COVID death by state health officials (after Fox News investigation the classification was changed.) And a middle-aged construction worker fell off a ladder in Croatia and was also counted as a death from COVID (whether having COVID played a role in his death is still unclear.)
To muddy the waters further, even people who test negative for COVID are sometimes counted as COVID deaths.
Consider the case of 26-year-old Matthew Irvin, a father of three from Yamhill County, Oregon. As reported by KGW8 News, Irvin went to the ER with stomach pain, nausea, and diarrhea on July 5, 2020. But instead of admitting him to the hospital, the doctors sent him home.
Five days later, on July 10, 2020, Irvin died. Though his COVID test came back negative two days after his death and his family told reporters and public health officials that no one Irvin had been around had any COVID symptoms, the medical examiner allegedly told the family that an autopsy was not necessary, listing his death as a coronavirus case. It took the Oregon Health Authority two and a half months to correct the mistake.
In an even more striking example of overcounting COVID deaths, a nursing home in New Jersey that only has 90 beds was wrongly reported as having 753 deaths from COVID. According to a spokesman, they had fewer than twenty deaths. In other words, the number of deaths was over-reported by 3,700 percent.
Who’s Suffering from Severe COVID, Vaccinated or Unvaccinated?
In countries with the highest numbers of vaccinated individuals, we are also seeing high numbers of infections. Iceland has one of the most vaccinated populations in the world (over 82 percent) and is reporting that 77 percent of new COVID cases are in fully vaccinated Icelanders, according to Ásthildur Knútsdóttir, Director General of the Ministry of Health.
According to news reports, over 85 percent of the Israeli adult population has been vaccinated. But a July report from Israel’s Ministry of Health found that Pfizer’s vaccine is only 39 percent effective. Though Israeli health officials are telling the public that the cases are more mild in vaccinated individuals, this upsurge in COVID cases and deaths is leading Israel’s prime minister to issue new restrictions.
Dr. Peter McCullough, an academic internist and cardiologist in practice in Dallas, Texas, says that a large number of people in the hospitals right now have, indeed, been fully vaccinated. “Fully vaccinated people are being hospitalized, and … 19 percent of them have died,” McCullough says. “This is not a crisis of the unvaccinated. That’s just a talking point. The vaccinated are participating in this.”
Other physicians are seeing the same thing. “In my practice multiple patients who are fully vaccinated have been admitted to local hospitals,” says Dr. Jeffrey I. Barke, a board-certified primary care physician based in Newport Beach, California. Barke believes part of the problem is exaggeration of the efficacy: “If the vaccine works so well, why are we now pushing a booster?”
Jennifer Margulis, Ph.D., is an award-winning journalist and author of Your Baby, Your Way: Taking Charge of Your Pregnancy, Childbirth, and Parenting Decisions for a Happier, Healthier Family. A Fulbright awardee and mother of four, she has worked on a child survival campaign in West Africa, advocated for an end to child slavery in Pakistan on prime-time TV in France, and taught post-colonial literature to non-traditional students in inner-city Atlanta. Learn more about her at JenniferMargulis.net
Israel has been allowed to get away with massive espionage directed against the U.S. and the theft of material and technology, Phil Giraldi writes.
Few Americans are aware of the fact that no U.S. government official, to include congressmen, can in any way mention or discuss Israel’s nuclear arsenal, which is estimated by some observers to consist of as many as 200 tactical nuclear weapons which can be delivered on target by air, land or sea. The prohibition is spelled out in a Department of Energy “classification bulletin” graded Secret, which was issued on September 6, 2012 and bears the file number WPN-136. The subject line reads “Guidance on Release of information Relating to the Potential for an Israeli Nuclear Capability.” It would be interesting to learn exactly how the text of the memo reads, but in spite of repeated attempts to obtain a copy under the Freedom of Information Act, the entire body of the document is completely blacked out.
What is known in that the memo is basically a gag order, presumably issued by the Barack Obama Administration to block any official from making a comment that might be interpreted to mean that the federal government recognizes that Israel has nuclear weapons. The silence over the Israeli arsenal dates back to an agreement made by President Richard Nixon with Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir. In its most recent manifestation, President Barack Obama, when asked if he knew of “any country in the Middle East that has nuclear weapons,” responded “I don’t want to speculate.” He was, of course, lying.
The bulletin’s first known victim was Los Alamos National Laboratory nuclear policy specialist James Doyle who in 2013 wrote a sentence suggesting that Israel had a nuclear arsenal. It appeared in an article entitled “Why Eliminate Nuclear Weapons?” which had been security cleared by Los Alamos and appeared in the journal of the International Institute for Strategic Studies. An unknown congressional staffer demanded a review and Doyle had his home computer searched before being fired.
Israel, as is so often the case, gets a free pass on what is for others criminal behavior. Its nuclear program was created by stealing American uranium and weapons technology. Preventing nuclear proliferation was in fact a major objective of the U.S. government when in the early 1960s President John F. Kennedy learned that Tel Aviv was developing a nuclear weapon from a CIA report. He told the Israelis to terminate their program or risk losing American political and economic support but was killed before any steps were taken to end the project.
Israel accelerated its nuclear program after the death of President Kennedy. By 1965, it had obtained the raw material for a bomb consisting of U.S. government owned highly enriched weapons grade uranium obtained from a company in Pennsylvania called NUMEC, which was founded in 1956 and owned by Zalman Mordecai Shapiro, head of the Pittsburgh chapter of the Zionist Organization of America. NUMEC was a supplier of enriched uranium for government projects but it was also from the start a front for the Israeli nuclear program, with its chief funder David Lowenthal, a leading Zionist, traveling to Israel at least once a month where he would meet with an old friend Meir Amit, who headed Israeli intelligence. NUMEC covered the shipment of enriched uranium to Israel by claiming the metal was “lost,” losses that totaled nearly six hundred pounds, enough to produce dozens of weapons. Such was the importance of the operation that in 1968 NUMEC even received a private incognito visit from a top Israeli spymaster Rafi Eitan who later ran the spy Jonathan Pollard.
Also there was physical evidence relating to the diversion of the uranium. Refined uranium has a technical signature that permit identification of its source. Traces of uranium from NUMEC were identified by Department of Energy inspectors in Israel in 1978. The Central Intelligence Agency has also looked into the diversion of enriched uranium from the NUMEC plant and concluded that it was part of a broader program to obtain the technology and raw materials for a nuclear device for Israel.
With the uranium in hand, the stealing of the advanced technology needed to make a nuclear weapon, which is where Hollywood movie producer Arnon Milchan comes into the story. Milchan was born in Israel but moved to the United States and eventually wound up as the founder-owner of New Regency Films. In a November 25, 2013 interview on Israeli television Milchan admitted that he had spent his many years in Hollywood as an agent for Israeli intelligence, helping obtain embargoed technologies and materials that enabled Israel to develop a nuclear weapon. He worked for Israel’s Bureau of Science and Liaison acquisition division of Mossad, referred to as the LAKAM spy agency.
Milchan admitted in the interview that “I did it for my country and I’m proud of it.” He was not referring to the United States. He also said that “other big Hollywood names were connected to [his] covert affairs.” Among other successes, he obtained through his company Heli Trading 800 krytons, the sophisticated triggers for nuclear weapons. The devices were acquired from the California top secret defense contractor MILCO International. Milchan personally recruited MILCO’s president Richard Kelly Smyth as an agent before turning him over to another Heli Trading employee, future Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for handling. Smyth was eventually arrested in 1985 but insofar as is known neither Milchan nor Netanyahu has ever been questioned by the FBI regarding the thefts.
Israel’s nukes are now in the news because of an Op-Ed that surprisingly appeared in the New York Times on August 11th written by Peter Beinart entitled “America Needs to Start Telling the Truth About Israel’s Nukes.” Beinart wrote that “Israel already has nuclear weapons. You’d just never know it from America’s leaders, who have spent the last half-century feigning ignorance. This deceit undercuts America’s supposed commitment to nuclear nonproliferation, and it distorts the American debate over Iran. It’s time for the Biden administration to tell the truth.”
Beinart points out that the American public can hardly make an informed judgement regarding what should be done in the Middle East if it is uncertain whether Israel is a nuclear power or not, but one issue he does not discuss is the issue of money. IRMEP’s Grant Smith, who has been challenging the secrecy surrounding the Israeli arsenal, recently observed that “The Symington & Glenn provisions of the Arms Export Control Act (22 USC §2799aa-1: Nuclear reprocessing transfers, illegal exports for nuclear explosive devices, transfers of nuclear explosive devices, and nuclear detonations) forbid U.S. foreign aid to countries with nuclear weapons programs that are not signatories to the Treaty on the Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, absent required special procedures… But no member of Congress has taken up this issue — or even mentioned Israel’s nuclear weapons arsenal.”
Smith is frustrated by the reluctance of progressives in Congress, who have opposed recent additional $735 million in military aid to Israel permitting it to rearm after its assault on the Gazans, to ignore the gag order and raise the issue of the nuclear arsenal. He writes “It seems as though even these members of Congress, as well as the rest of the U.S. government, are abiding by this secret gag order when they could take action which would challenge the administration’s refusal to acknowledge Israel’s nuclear weapons and possibly stop $3.8 billion in taxpayer money from going to Israel.”
That the Energy Department document exists at all is recognition of the astonishing power of the Israeli Lobby over the U.S. government at all levels, particularly as it is intended to ignore or even negate other legislation passed by congress to combat nuclear proliferation. And the denial of what everyone knows to be true, i.e. that Israel has a nuclear arsenal, appears to all come down to the ability of the United States government to continue to reward a wealthy Israel with billions of dollars of taxpayer money every year. To suggest that the arrangement is nefarious would be to put it mildly, but it is more that that. It is criminal. Israel has been allowed to get away with massive espionage directed against the United States and the theft of material and technology while also since the 1970s being engaged in a conspiracy with the U.S. government that distorts America’s foreign policy, largely done to keep getting the billions of dollars that it is not entitled to receive under existing American law. It is shameful. Beyond that, it might be construed as treason.
Cued to start at her [evasive] response to question on Israel Palestime relations.
In lieu of an in-person Congressional Breakfast, JCRC-NY is hosting Congressional Conversations featuring Members of the NY Congressional Delegation
Anthrax Vaccine -- posts by Meryl Nass, M.D.: Israel and Pfizer just discovered facial nerve (Bell's) paralysis is a side of effect of Pfizer's shot
Israel National News reports below that new side effects are discovered when you vaccinate 2.5 million people at once with an experimental vaccine.
Funny, even before one Israeli was vaccinated it was reported in this blog on December 17 that the mRNA vaccines caused Bell's Palsy. Don't you think Pfizer and Moderna knew it too? What else do they know while feigning ignorance?
The coronavirus vaccine developed by Pfizer and BioNTech has apparently caused a number of side-effects not anticipated by the producers, a department manager at Sheba Medical Center in Tel HaShomer said Tuesday.
Professor Galia Rahav, chief of the Infectious Disease Unit and Laboratories at the Sheba Medical Center, spoke with Kan Reshet Bet Tuesday about the newly-discovered side-effects some people have reported experiencing after receiving the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine.
The new side-effects range from paraesthesia – a nerve condition causing a tingling sensation or ‘pins and needles’ – to facial nerve paralysis.
“When we noticed this and spoke with [the company], they started to get reports about this,” said Rahav.
“At the beginning, they said that it was just hysterical women, but it doesn’t seem that way, because we’re seeing this with men as well.”
Prof. Rahav emphasized that the side-effects are likely temporary, and that it is not yet certain that the vaccine caused the reactions. But, she added, since the vaccine is new “we need to examine it, to learn, and to observe.”
“We’re just now learning about the effectiveness of the vaccine in real life. In real, day to day life, you learn different things. The effectiveness is a little different. When you vaccinate 2.5 million people in one shot, obviously we’re going to see different things happening.”
The devastating hack on SolarWinds was quickly pinned on Russia by US intelligence. A more likely culprit, Samanage, a company whose software was integrated into SolarWinds’ software just as the “back door” was inserted, is deeply tied to Israeli intelligence and intelligence-linked families such as the Maxwells.
In mid-December of 2020, a massive hack compromised the networks of numerous US federal agencies, major corporations, the top five accounting firms in the country, and the military, among others. Despite most US media attention now focusing on election-related chaos, the fallout from the hack continues to make headlines day after day.
The hack, which affected Texas-based software provider SolarWinds, was blamed on Russia on January 5 by the US government’s Cyber Unified Coordination Group. Their statement asserted that the attackers were “likely Russian in origin,” but they failed to provide evidence to back up that claim.
Since then, numerous developments in the official investigation have been reported, but no actual evidence pointing to Russia has yet to be released. Rather, mainstream media outlets began reporting the intelligence community’s “likely” conclusion as fact right away, with the New York Times subsequently reporting that US investigators were examining a product used by SolarWinds that was sold by a Czech Republic–based company, as the possible entry point for the “Russian hackers.” Interest in that company, however, comes from the fact that the attackers most likely had access to the systems of a contractor or subsidiary of SolarWinds. This, combined with the evidence-free report from US intelligence on “likely” Russian involvement, is said to be the reason investigators are focusing on the Czech company, though any of SolarWinds’ contractors/subsidiaries could have been the entry point.
Such narratives clearly echo those that became prominent in the wake of the 2016 election, when now-debunked claims were made that Russian hackers were responsible for leaked emails published by WikiLeaks. Parallels are obvious when one considers that SolarWinds quickly brought on the discredited firm CrowdStrike to aid them in securing their networks and investigating the hack. CrowdStrike had also been brought on by the DNC after the 2016 WikiLeaks publication, and subsequently it was central in developing the false declarations regarding the involvement of “Russian hackers” in that event.
There are also other parallels. As Russiagate played out, it became apparent that there was collusion between the Trump campaign and a foreign power, but the nation was Israel, not Russia. Indeed, many of the reports that came out of Russiagate revealed collusion with Israel, yet those instances received little coverage and generated little media outrage. This has led some to suggest that Russiagate may have been a cover for what was in fact Israelgate.
Similarly, in the case of the SolarWinds hack, there is the odd case and timing of SolarWinds’ acquisition of a company called Samanage in 2019. As this report will explore, Samanage’s deep ties to Israeli intelligence, venture-capital firms connected to both intelligence and Isabel Maxwell, as well as Samange’s integration with the Orion software at the time of the back door’s insertion warrant investigation every bit as much as SolarWinds’ Czech-based contractor.
In the month since the hack, evidence has emerged detailing the extent of the damage, with the Justice Department quietly announcing, the same day as the Capitol riots (January 6), that their email system had been breached in the hack—a “major incident” according to the department. This terminology means that the attack “is likely to result in demonstrable harm to the national security interests, foreign relations, or the economy of the United States or to the public confidence, civil liberties, or public health and safety of the American people,” per NextGov.
The Justice Department was the fourth US government agency to publicly acknowledge a breach in connection to the hack, with the others being the Departments of Commerce and Energy and the Treasury. Yet, while only four agencies have publicly acknowledged fallout from the hack, SolarWinds software is also used by the Department of Defense, the State Department, NASA, the NSA, and the Executive Office. Given that the Cyber Unified Coordination Group stated that “fewer than ten” US government agencies had been affected, it’s likely that some of these agencies were compromised, and some press reports have asserted that the State Department and Pentagon were affected.
In addition to government agencies, SolarWinds Orion software was in use by the top ten US telecommunications corporations, the top five US accounting firms, the New York Power Authority, and numerous US government contractors such as Booz Allen Hamilton, General Dynamics, and the Federal Reserve. Other notable SolarWinds clients include the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Microsoft, Credit Suisse, and several mainstream news outlets including the Economist and the New York Times.
Based on what is officially known so far, the hackers appeared to have been highly sophisticated, with FireEye, the cybersecurity company that first discovered the implanted code used to conduct the hack, stating that the hackers “routinely removed their tools, including the backdoors, once legitimate remote access was achieved—implying a high degree of technical sophistication and attention to operational security.” In addition, top security experts have noted that the hack was “very very carefully orchestrated,” leading to a consensus that the hack was state sponsored.
FireEye stated that they first identified the compromise of SolarWinds after the version of the Orion software they were using contained a back door that was used to gain access to its “red team” suite of hacking tools. Not long after the disclosure of the SolarWinds hack, on December 31, the hackers were able to partially access Microsoft’s source code, raising concerns that the act was preparation for future and equally devastating attacks.
FireEye’s account can be taken with a grain of salt, however, as the CIA is one of FireEye’s clients, and FireEye was launched with funding from the CIA’s venture capital arm In-Q-tel. It is also worth being skeptical of the “free tool” FireEye has made available in the hack’s aftermath for “spotting and keeping suspected Russians out of systems.”
In addition, Microsoft, another key source in the SolarWinds story, is a military contractor with close ties to Israel’s intelligence apparatus, especially Unit 8200, and their reports of events also deserve scrutiny. Notably, it was Unit 8200 alumnus and executive at Israeli cybersecurity firm Cycode, Ronen Slavin, who told Reuters in a widely quoted article that he “was worried by the possibility that the SolarWinds hackers were poring over Microsoft’s source code as prelude to a much more ambitious offensive.” “To me the biggest question is, ‘Was this recon for the next big operation?’” Slavin stated.
Also odd about the actors involved in the response to the hack is the decision to bring on not only the discredited firm CrowdStrike but also the new consultancy firm of Chris Krebs and Alex Stamos, former chief information security officer of Facebook and Yahoo, to investigate the hack. Chris Krebs is the former head of the Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) and was previously a top Microsoft executive. Krebs was fired by Donald Trump after repeatedly and publicly challenging Trump on the issue of election fraud in the 2020 election.
As head of CISA, Krebs gave access to networks of critical infrastructure throughout the US, with a focus on the health-care industry, to the CTI League, a suspicious outfit of anonymous volunteers working “for free” and led by a former Unit 8200 officer. “We have brought in the expertise of Chris Krebs and Alex Stamos to assist in this review and provide best-in-class guidance on our journey to evolve into an industry leading secure software development company,” a SolarWinds spokesperson said in an email cited by Reuters.
It is also worth noting that the SolarWinds hack did benefit a few actors aside from the attackers themselves. For instance, Israeli cybersecurity firms CheckPoint and CyberArk, which have close ties to Israeli intelligence Unit 8200, have seen their stocks soar in the weeks since the SolarWinds compromise was announced. Notably, in 2017, CyberArk was the company that “discovered” one of the main tactics used in an attack, a form of SAML token manipulation called GoldenSAML. CyberArk does not specify how they discovered this method of attack and, at the time they announced the tactic’s existence, released a free tool to identify systems vulnerable to GoldenSAML manipulation.
In addition, the other main mode of attack, a back door program nicknamed Sunburst, was found by Kaspersky researchers to be similar to a piece of malware called Kazuar that was also first discovered by another Unit 8200-linked company, Palo Alto Networks, also in 2017. The similarities only suggest that those who developed the Sunburst backdoor may have been inspired by Kazuar and “they may have common members between them or a shared software developer building their malware.” Kaspersky stressed that Sunburst and Kazuar are not likely to be one and the same. It is worth noting, as an aside, that Unit 8200 is known to have previously hacked Kaspersky and attempted to insert a back door into their products, per Kaspersky employees.
Crowdstrike claimed that this finding confirmed “the attribution at least to Russian intelligence,” only because an allegedly Russian hacking group is believed to have used Kazuar before. No technical evidence linking Russia to the SolarWinds hacking has yet been presented.
Samanage and Sabotage
The implanted code used to execute the hack was directly injected into the source code of SolarWinds Orion. Then, the modified and bugged version of the software was “compiled, signed and delivered through the existing software patch release management system,” per reports. This has led US investigators and observers to conclude that the perpetrators had direct access to SolarWinds code as they had “a high degree of familiarity with the software.” While the way the attackers gained access to Orion’s code base has yet to be determined, one possibility being pursued by investigators is that the attackers were working with employee(s) of a SolarWinds contractor or subsidiary.
US investigators have been focusing on offices of SolarWinds that are based abroad, suggesting that—in addition to the above—the attackers were likely working for SolarWinds or were given access by someone working for the company. That investigation has focused on offices in eastern Europe, allegedly because “Russian intelligence operatives are deeply rooted” in those countries.
It is worth pointing out, however, that Israeli intelligence is similarly “deeply rooted” in eastern European states both before and after the fall of the Soviet Union, ties well illustrated by Israeli superspy and media tycoon Robert Maxwell’s frequent and close associations with Eastern European and Russian intelligence agencies as well as the leaders of many of those countries. Israeli intelligence operatives like Maxwell also had cozy ties with Russian organized crime. For instance, Maxwell enabled the access of the Russian organized crime network headed by Semion Mogilevich into the US financial system and was also Mogilevich’s business partner. In addition, the cross-pollination between Israeli and Russian organized crime networks (networks which also share ties to their respective intelligence agencies) and such links should be considered if the cybercriminals due prove to be Russian in origin, as US intelligence has claimed.
Though some contractors and subsidiaries of SolarWinds are now being investigated, one that has yet to be investigated, but should be, is Samanage. Samanage, acquired by SolarWinds in 2019, not only gained automatic access to Orion just as the malicious code was first inserted, but it has deep ties to Israeli intelligence and a web of venture-capital firms associated with numerous Israeli espionage scandals that have targeted the US government. Israel is deemed by the NSA to be one of the top spy threats facing US government agencies and Israel’s list of espionage scandals in the US is arguably the longest, and includes the Jonathan Pollard and PROMIS software scandals of the 1980s to the Larry Franklin/AIPAC espionage scandal in 2009.
Though much reporting has since been done on the recent compromise of SolarWinds Orion software, little attention has been paid to Samanage. Samanage offers what it describes as “an IT Service Desk solution.” It was acquired by SolarWinds so Samanage’s products could be added to SolarWinds’ IT Operations Management portfolio. Though US reporting and SolarWinds press releases state that Samanage is based in Cary, North Carolina, implying that it is an American company, Samanage is actually an Israeli firm. It was founded in 2007 by Doron Gordon, who previously worked for several years at MAMRAM, the Israeli military’s central computing unit.
Samanage was SolarWinds’ first acquisition of an Israeli company, and, at the time, Israeli media reported that SolarWinds was expected to set up its first development center in Israel. It appears, however, that SolarWinds, rather than setting up a new center, merely began using Samanage’s research and development center located in Netanya, Israel.
Several months after the acquisition was announced, in November 2019, Samanage, renamed SolarWinds Service Desk, became listed as a standard feature of SolarWinds Orion software, whereas the integration of Samanage and Orion had previously been optional since the acquisition’s announcement in April of that year. This means that complete integration was likely made standard in either October or November. It has since been reported that the perpetrators of the recent hack gained access to the networks of US federal agencies and major corporations at around the same time. Samanage’s automatic integration into Orion was a major modification made to the now-compromised software during that period.
Samanage appears to have had access to Orion following the announcement of the acquisition in April 2019. Integration first began with Orion version 2019.4, the earliest version believed to contain the malicious code that enabled the hack. In addition, the integrated Samanage component of Orion was responsible for “ensuring the appropriate teams are quickly notified when critical events or performance issues [with Orion] are detected,” which was meant to allow “service agents to react faster and resolve issues before . . . employees are impacted.”
In other words, the Samanage component that was integrated into Orion at the same time the compromise took place was also responsible for Orion’s alert system for critical events or performance issues. The code that was inserted into Orion by hackers in late 2019 nevertheless went undetected by this Samanage-made component for over a year, giving the “hackers” access to millions of devices critical to both US government and corporate networks. Furthermore, it is this Samanage-produced component of the affected Orion software that advises end users to exempt the software from antivirus scans and group policy object (GPO) restrictions by providing a warning that Orion may not work properly unless those exemptions are granted.
Samanage, Salesforce, and the World Economic Forum
Around the time of Samange’s acquisition by SolarWinds, it was reported that one of Samanage’s top backers was the company Salesforce, with Salesforce being both a major investor in Samanage as well as a partner of the company.
Salesforce is run by Marc Benioff, a billionaire who got his start at the tech giant Oracle. Oracle was originally created as a CIA spin-off and has deep ties to Israel’s government and the outgoing Trump administration. Salesforce also has a large presence in Israel, with much of its global research and development based there. Salesforce also recently partnered with the Unit 8200-linked Israeli firm Diagnostic Robotics to “predictively” diagnose COVID-19 cases using Artificial Intelligence.
Aside from leading Salesforce, Benioff is a member of the Vatican’s Council for Inclusive Capitalism alongside Lynn Forester de Rothschild, a close associate of Jeffrey Epstein and the Clintons, and members of the Lauder family, who have deep ties to the Mega Group and Israeli politics.
Benioff is also a prominent member of the board of trustees of the World Economic Forum and the inaugural chair of the WEF’s Centre for the Fourth Industrial Revolution (C4IR), making him one of the most critical players in the unfolding of the WEF-backed Great Reset. Other WEF leaders, including the organization’s founder Klaus Schwab, have openly discussed how massive cyberattacks such as befell SolarWinds will soon result in “even more significant economic and social implications than COVID-19.”
Last year, the WEF’s Centre for Cybersecurity, of which Salesforce is part, simulated a “digital pandemic” cyberattack in an exercise entitled Cyber Polygon. Cyber Polygon’s speakers in 2020 included former UK Prime Minister Tony Blair, the Prime Minister of Russia Mikhail Mishustin, WEF founder Klaus Schwab, and IBM executive Wendi Whitmore, who previously held top posts at both Crowdstrike and a FireEye subsidiary. Notably, just months before the COVID-19 crisis, the WEF had held Event 201, which simulated a global coronavirus pandemic that crippled the world’s economy.
In addition to Samanage’s ties to WEF big shots such as Marc Benioff, the other main investors behind Samanage’s rise have ties to major Israeli espionage scandals, including the Jonathan Pollard affair and the PROMIS software scandal. There are also ties to one of the WEF’s founding “technology pioneers,” Isabel Maxwell (the daughter of Robert Maxwell and sister of Ghislaine), who has long-standing ties to Israel’s intelligence apparatus and the country’s hi-tech sector.
The Bronfmans, the Maxwells, and Viola Ventures
At the time of its acquisition by SolarWinds, Samanage’s top investor was Viola Ventures, a major Israeli venture-capital firm. Viola’s investment in Samanage, until its acquisition, was managed by Ronen Nir, who was also on Samanage’s board before it became part of SolarWinds.
Prior to working at Viola, Ronen Nir was a vice president at Verint, formerly Converse Infosys. Verint, whose other alumni have gone on to found Israeli intelligence-front companies such as Cybereason. Verint has a history of aggressively spying on US government facilities, including the White House, and created the backdoors into all US telecommunications systems and major tech companies, including Microsoft, Google and Facebook, on behalf of the US’ NSA.
In addition to his background at Verint, Ronen Nir is an Israeli spy, having served for thirteen years in an elite IDF intelligence unit, and he remains a lieutenant colonel on reserve duty. His biography also notes that he worked for two years at the Israeli embassy in Washington, DC, which is fitting given his background in espionage and the major role that Israeli embassy has played in several major espionage scandals.
As an aside, Nir has stated that “thought leader” Henry Kissinger is his “favorite historical character.” Notably, Kissinger was instrumental in allowing Robert Maxwell, Israeli superspy and father of Ghislaine and Isabel Maxwell, to sell software with a back door for Israeli intelligence to US national laboratories, where it was used to spy on the US nuclear program. Kissinger had told Maxwell to connect with Senator John Tower in order to gain access to US national laboratories, which directly enabled this action, part of the larger PROMIS software scandal.
In addition, Viola’s stake was managed through a firm known as Carmel Ventures, which is part of the Viola Group. At the time, Carmel Ventures was advised by Isabel Maxwell, whose father had previously been directly involved in the operation of the front company used to sell bugged software to US national laboratories. As noted in a previous article at Unlimited Hangout, Isabel “inherited” her father’s circle of Israeli government and intelligence contacts after his death and has been instrumental in building the “bridge” between Israel’s intelligence and military-linked hi-tech sector to Silicon Valley.
Isabel also has ties to the Viola Group itself through Jonathan Kolber, a general partner at Viola. Kolber previously cofounded and led the Bronfman family’s private-equity fund, Claridge Israel (based in Israel). Kolber then led Koor Industries, which he had acquired alongside the Bronfmans via Claridge. Kolber is closely associated with Stephen Bronfman, the son of Charles Bronfman who created Claridge and also cofounded the Mega Group with Leslie Wexner in the early 1990s.
Kolber, like Isabel Maxwell, is a founding director of the Peres Center for Peace and Innovation. Maxwell, who used to chair the center’s board, stepped down following the Epstein scandal, though it’s not exactly clear when. Other directors of the center include Tamir Pardo, former head of Mossad. Kolber’s area of expertise, like that of Isabel Maxwell, is “structuring complex, cross-border and cross industry business and financial transactions,” that is, arranging acquisitions and partnerships of Israeli firms by US companies. Incidentally, this is also a major focus of the Peres Center.
Other connections to Isabel Maxwell, aside from her espionage ties, are worth noting, given that she is a “technology pioneer” of the World Economic Forum. As previously mentioned, Salesforce—a major investor in Samanage—is deeply involved with the WEF and its Great Reset.
The links of Israeli intelligence and Salesforce to Samanage, and thus to SolarWinds, is particularly relevant given the WEF’s “prediction” of a coming “pandemic” of cyberattacks and the early hints from former Unit 8200 officers that the SolarWinds hack is just the beginning. It is also worth mentioning the Israeli government’s considerable ties to the WEF over the years, particularly last year when it joined the Benioff-chaired C4IR and participated in the October 2020 WEF panel entitled “The Great Reset: Harnessing the Fourth Industrial Revolution.”
Start Up Nation Central, an organization aimed at integrating Israeli start-ups with US firms set up by Netanyahu’s longtime economic adviser Eugene Kandel and American Zionist billionaire Paul Singer, have asserted that Israel will serve a “key role” globally in the 4th Industrial Revolution following the implementation of the Great Reset.
Gemini, the BIRD Foundation, and Jonathan Pollard
In addition to Viola, another of Samange’s leading investors is Gemini Israel Ventures. Gemini is one of Israel’s oldest venture-capital firms, dating back to the Israeli government’s 1993 Yozma program.
The first firm created by Yozma, Gemini was put under the control of Ed Mlavsky, who Israel’s government had chosen specifically for this position. As previously reported by Unlimited Hangout, Mlavsky was then serving as the executive director of the Israel-US Binational Industrial Research and Development (BIRD) Foundation, where “he was responsible for investments of $100 million in more than 300 joint projects between US and Israeli high-tech companies.”
A few years before Gemini was created, while Mlavsky still headed BIRD, the foundation became embroiled in one of the worst espionage scandals in US history, the Jonathan Pollard affair.
In the indictment of US citizen Pollard for espionage on Israel’s behalf, it was noted that Pollard delivered the documents he stole to agents of Israel at two locations, one of which was an apartment owned by Harold Katz, the then legal counsel of the BIRD Foundation and an adviser to Israel’s military, which oversaw Israel’s scientific intelligence-gathering agency, Lekem. US officials told the New York Times at the time that they believed Katz “has detailed knowledge about the [Pollard] spy ring and could implicate senior Israeli officials.”
Subsequent reporting by journalist Claudia Wright pointed the finger at the Mlavsky-run BIRD Foundation as one of the ways Israeli intelligence funneled money to Pollard before his capture by US authorities.
One of the first companies Gemini invested in was CommTouch (now Cyren), which was founded by ex-IDF officers and later led by Isabel Maxwell. Under Maxwell’s leadership, CommTouch developed close ties to Microsoft, partially due to Maxwell’s relationship with its cofounder Bill Gates.
A Coming “Hack” of Microsoft?
If the SolarWinds hack is as serious as has been reported, it’s difficult to understand why a company like Samanage would not be looked into as part of a legitimate investigation into the attack. The timing of Samanage employees gaining access to the Orion software and the company’s investors including Israeli spies and those with ties to past espionage scandals where Israel used back doors to spy on the US and beyond raises obvious red flags. Yet, any meaningful investigation of the incident is unlikely to take place, especially given the considerable involvement of discredited firms like CrowdStrike, CIA fronts like FireEye and a consultancy firm led by former Silicon Valley executives with their own government/intelligence ties.
There is also the added fact that both of the main methods used in the attack were analogous or bore similarities to hacking tools that were both discovered by Unit 8200-linked companies in 2017. Unit 8200-founded cybersecurity firms are among the few “winners” from the SolarWinds hack, as their stocks have skyrocketed and demand for their services has increased globally.
While some may argue that Unit 8200 alumni are not necessarily connected to the Israeli intelligence apparatus, numerous reports have pointed out the admitted fusion of Israeli military intelligence with Israel’s hi-tech sector and its tech-focused venture capital networks, with Israeli military and intelligence officials themselves noting that the line between the private cybersecurity sector and Israel’s intelligence apparatus is so blurred, it’s difficult to know where one begins and the other ends. There is also the Israeli government policy, formally launched in 2012, whereby Israel’s intelligence and military intelligence agencies began outsourcing “activities that were previously managed in-house, with a focus on software and cyber technologies.”
Samanage certainly appears to be such a company, not only because it was founded by a former IDF officer in the military’s central computing unit, but because its main investors include spies on “reserve duty” and venture capital firms linked to the Pollard scandal as well as the Bronfman and Maxwell families, both of whom have been tied to espionage and sexual blackmail scandals over the years.
Yet, as the Epstein scandal has recently indicated, major espionage scandals involving Israel receive little coverage and investigations into these events rarely lead anywhere. PROMIS was covered up largely thanks to Bill Barr during his first term as Attorney General and even the Pollard affair has all been swept under the rug with Donald Trump allowing Pollard to move to Israel and, more recently, pardoning the Israeli spy who recruited Pollard during his final day as President. Also under Trump, there was the discovery of “stingray” surveillance devices placed by Israel’s government throughout Washington DC, including next to the White House, which were quickly memory holed and oddly not investigated by authorities. Israel had previously wiretapped the White House’s phone lines during the Clinton years.
Another cover up is likely in the case of SolarWinds, particularly if the entry point was in fact Samanage. Though a cover up would certainly be more of the same, the SolarWinds case is different as major tech companies and cybersecurity firms with ties to US and Israeli intelligence now insist that Microsoft is soon to be targeted in what would clearly be a much more devastating event than SolarWinds due to the ubiquity of Microsoft’s products.
On Tuesday, CIA-linked firm FireEye, which apparently has a leadership role in investigating the hack, claimed that the perpetrators are still gathering data from US government agencies and that “the hackers are moving into Microsoft 365 cloud applications from physical, on-premises servers,” meaning that changes to fix Orion’s vulnerabilities will not necessarily deny hacker access to previously compromised systems as they allegedly maintain access to those systems via Microsoft cloud applications. In addition to Microsoft’s own claims that some of its source code was accessed by the hackers, this builds the narrative that Microsoft products are poised to be targeted in the next high-profile hack.
Microsoft’s cloud security infrastructure, set to be the next target of the SolarWinds hackers, was largely developed and later managed by Assaf Rappaport, a former Unit 8200 officer who was most recently the head of Microsoft’s Research and Development and Security teams at its massive Israel branch. Rappaport left Microsoft right before the COVID-19 crisis began last year to found a new cybersecurity company called Wiz.
Microsoft, like some of Samanage’s main backers, is part of the World Economic Forum and is an enthusiastic supporter of and participant in the Great Reset agenda, so much so that Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella wrote the foreword to Klaus Schwab’s book “Shaping the Fourth Industrial Revolution.” With the WEF simulating a cyber “pandemic” and both the WEF and Israel’s head of Israel’s National Cyber Directorate warning of an imminent “cyber winter”, SolarWinds does indeed appear to be just the beginning, though perhaps a scripted one to create the foundation for something much more severe. A cyberattack on Microsoft products globally would certainly upend most of the global economy and likely have economic effects more severe than the COVID-19 crisis, just as the WEF has been warning. Yet, if such a hack does occur, it will inevitably serve the aims of the Great Reset to “reset” and then rebuild electronic infrastructure.
When the foundations of international law were laid in 1899 at the Hague Conference, the aim was to prevent wars between states by means of arbitration. When the British Empire decolonized Mandate Palestine and the Arab-Israeli conflict erupted, international law was of no recourse because there was neither a Palestinian nor a Jewish state. So they tinkered with incoherent rules that we, wrongly, consider to be immutable.
The principles that the founding states of the United Nations, including Syria, drew up in the plan for the partition of Palestine were rejected by both sides. When the Yishuv unilaterally proclaimed the State of Israel and immediately carried out extensive ethnic cleansing (the Nakba), the UN recognized the new state, but sent Count Folke Bernadotte to verify the reality on the spot. He noted Israel’s crimes, advocated limiting by two thirds the territory allocated to the Yishuv, but was assassinated by the Lehi of Yitzhak Shamir, before he could present his report in New York. More than 700 General Assembly resolutions and more than 100 Security Council resolutions later, the conflict had escalated and no solution was in sight.
President Trump had imagined that he would be able to square the circle before the end of his mandate. As soon as he was elected, he was mistakenly considered pro-Israel when he is just a New World businessman.
He started from the following observation: Israel ethnically cleansed the territory it self-allocated in 1948. It fought the 1967 war, which it won.
The Palestinians fought the 1970 war with Jordan, the 1973 war with Israel, the 1975 war with Lebanon, the 1990 war with Kuwait, and the 2012 war with Syria, all of which they lost. But neither group intends to assume the consequences of its actions.
The debate has been distorted since Yasser Arafat, refusing to be marginalized by the Madrid process, abandoned the project of a binational State based on equality between Arabs and Jews and violated the 1948 partition plan by signing the Oslo Accords. The principle of the "two-state solution", devised by Yitzhak Rabin, the former ally of the South African apartheid regime, is nothing more than the creation of Palestinian Bantustans, an extension of what President Jimmy Carter called "Israeli apartheid".
Trump has therefore devised a peace plan that he has begun to implement silently over the past two years.
On December 6, 2017, he recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, without specifying its borders, hoping in vain that the Palestinian Authority would move from Ramallah to East Jerusalem.
He withdrew US funding from UNRWA in order to force the international community to stop sponsoring the status quo. This provoked the fury of the Palestinian Authority and severed diplomatic relations between Ramallah and Washington. As heir to the people who had stolen the land from the Indians, he recognized Israel’s conquest of the Syrian Golan, hoping to open negotiations with Damascus, but reaping only the condemnation of 193 States.
He secretly negotiated an agreement between Israel and Hamas that led to the payment of Gaza officials by Qatar.
The document published by the White House this week is presented by its authors as unenforceable because it does not have the support of both parties (page 10). It presents a process in four years, that is to say during the next US presidential term. It is therefore a document for electoral use in the United States, not a final peace plan.
Rather than whining and denouncing a fait accompli, we need to understand where the White House is going, especially since we reject Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights.
Donald Trump is a businessman who has put an unacceptable plan on the table in order to achieve much less, but to achieve peace. He is a disciple of President Andrew Jackson who substituted negotiation for war with the Indians. Certainly, the agreement he signed with the Cherokees was sabotaged by his own army and gave rise to the atrocious episode of the Trial of Tears. But today, the Cherokees are the only Native American people to have survived European immigration as such.
The publication of this document was also a trap into which Benjamin Netanyahu fell headlong. Without waiting, the Israeli Prime Minister loudly welcomed the plan in order to eclipse his competitor, General Beny Gantz. Netanyahu had cause to regret this. All the Arab League states stood united, including Qatar, which is secretly participating in the plan. The years of Israel’s efforts to break the Arab front by relying on Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Jordan and Oman have been wiped out.
President Trump’s ‘deal of the century’ has been published this week. Mostly, it has been examined as a purely political project – whether in terms of the domestic needs of Trump and Netanyahu, or as a maximum squeeze on Palestinians, which may, or may not, work. But there is another (implicit) dimension, lying – a little out of sight – behind these explicit politics.
It has been argued, by at least one US historian, that the U.S. is no ordinary nation-state, but should be understood as a system leader, a ‘civilizational power’ – like Rome, Byzantium, and the Ottoman Empire. The ‘system leader’, historically, has always sought to embed its particular civilizational vision onto those distant ‘lands’ that serve, or abut, its empire: which is to say that the universalistic vision may be bound to one state, but is forcefully unfurled across the globe, as ‘our’ inevitable destiny.
It is not hard to see what we are talking about when it refers to America: politically it is liberal markets, liberal capitalism, individualism and laissez-faire politics – and the metaphysics of Judeo-Christianity, too, if you like. For most Americans, their victory in the Cold War spectacularly affirmed the superiority of their civilizational vision, through the defeat and implosion of communism. It was not just a political defeat for the USSR, more significantly, it represented a triumph for America’s full cultural paradigm: It was a Civilisational ‘win’.
What has this to do with what happened in the East Room of the White House this Tuesday? Well, it gives us a better vantage point to perceive something less obvious than just the explicit politics to the spectacle. Something more often ‘felt’, than explicitly considered.
That is because Jewish Zionism, as expressed by Netanyahu this week, though ostensibly secular, is not just a political construct: It is, too, as it were, an Old Testament project. Laurent Guyénot observes, that when it is asserted that Zionism is biblical, that doesn’t necessarily mean it to be religious. It can, and does, serve as key leitmotiv for secular Jews too. For secular Zionists, the Bible is on the one hand, a ‘national narrative’, but on the other, a particular civilizational vision, bound around a modern state (Israel).
Ben-Gurion was not religious; he never went to the synagogue, and ate pork for breakfast, yet he could declare: “I believe in our moral and intellectual superiority, in our capacity to serve as a model for the redemption of the human race”. Dan Kurzman, in his biography (Ben-Gurion, Prophet of Fire, 1983) writes that “[Ben Gurion] was, in a modern sense, Moses, Joshua, Isaiah, a messiah, who felt he was destined to create an exemplary Jewish state, a ‘light unto the nations’ that would help to redeem all mankind”. This is the inner Universalist vision (tied to a state). These backstage, half acknowledged, convictions – of being ‘elect’, as an example – clearly do condition political actions, (such as disregarding legal norms).
Ben-Gurion was in no way a special case. His immersion in the Bible was shared by almost every Zionist leader of his generation, and the next. And the Israel of today, is no longer as secular as it once was, but rather, is in transit back towards Yahweyism — which is to say, away from the law of a secular state founded by the Zionists, towards traditional Hebraic law as revealed in the Tanakh (the Old Testament of the Christians). Netanyahu implicitly reverts to Hebraic tradition (from secular norms), when he states flatly that as ‘leader’, he should not be removed from power. In other words, Israel is becoming more, not less, ‘biblical’.
So, back to last Tuesday, when an Israeli leader speaks of Trump having secured Israel’s destiny, he is not just resorting to flowery flattery for the US President. The emphasis on ‘destiny’ is flagging something lurking in the background: “Zionism cannot be a nationalist movement like others”, Guyénot writes, “because it resonates with the destiny of Israel as outlined in the Bible … Israel is a very special nation indeed. And everyone can see that it has no intention of being an ordinary nation. Israel is destined to be an empire”.
An ‘empire’ – as in Isaiah, which describes the messianic times as a Pax Judaica, when “all the nations” will pay tribute “to the mountain of Yahweh, to the house of the god of Jacob”; when “the Law will issue from Zion and the word of Yahweh from Jerusalem,” so that Yahweh will “judge between the nations and arbitrate between many peoples.”
Further on in the same book, we read: “The riches of the sea will flow to you, the wealth of the nations come to you” (60:5); “For the nation and kingdom that will not serve you will perish, and the nations will be utterly destroyed” (60:12); “You will suck the milk of nations, you will suck the wealth of kings” (60:16); “You will feed on the wealth of nations, you will supplant them in their glory” (61:5-6). Pretty clear: this is not just run of the mill nationalism.
Aren’t such quotes just too historically arcane? What has this to do with last Tuesday? Well, a lot. Because these notions of election, of an exceptional mission and destiny are literally believed by many Americans, as well as by Jews. The point about last Tuesday – from this implicit vantage point – is that it then becomes evident that Trump’s “deal” is not about any two-state solution. Why would Trump encourage a rival state to emerge, or for that matter anything that would impede the path towards Israel’s becoming the dominant civilisational power in the Middle East? What Tuesday was about was firstly, conditioning the Palestinians – squeezing them – to accept that they have no alternative, but to offer their fealty to the regional ‘system leader’ (Israel). And secondly, as phase two, to assimilate subordinated Sunni components, under the regional Pax Judaica umbrella.
These old prophesies may not be uppermost in the daily consciousness of many contemporaries. But they are alive, and present in the Hebraic world. And they are wholly present in one key US constituency: Trump’s Evangelical base (one in every four Americans say they are Evangelists). They see the actualisation of Israel’s destiny as an eschatological necessity: It was they who insisted on the move of the US Embassy to Jerusalem; they supported the Trump’s assertion of Israeli sovereignty over the Golan; they support the annexation of Israeli settlements; and they were behind the demand that the US scrap the JCPOA. The Evangelicals may be unlikely to switch to vote Democrat, but if enough simply sit on their hands and don’t vote Trump, it could tip ‘swing constituencies’ in the November US Presidential elections.
The Evangelicals were, of course, very happy with Tuesday’s outcome. Israel’s civilisational imperium is, they believe, now assured – at least between the west bank of the River Jordan and the sea. The actualisation of these prophesies has the effect of hastening the arrival of the Redeemer (for these Christian Zionists).
And here again, our vantage point helps to understand a wider paradigm, which centres around the term ‘Judeo-Christianity’. American leaders today increasingly refer to the US as having a Judeo-Christian culture. Might the term not seem something of an oxymoron: Wasn’t Christianity supposed to represent a fundamental break with Jewish textual law? Certainly, Saint Paul proclaimed Christianity was exactly that. The question is: does this Judeo-Christian self-labelling imply some subtle change: That some American élites are becoming unconsciously more Hebraic? In which direction is the core cultural ‘vision’ travelling? Israel originally was viewed as a recipient outpost for western Christian ‘values’ (in the days when Zionism largely was secular). Tuesday’s events suggests that the travel of values may be reversing.
But why this ‘Judeo-Christianity’ nomenclature in the first place? What is going on here? After the fall of Rome, circa 800, the leaders of the Frankish church precisely turned to the Old Testament as the basis to legitimise cultural war on Orthodox (Eastern) Christianity, which the Franks then labelled (pejoratively) as ‘Greek’ – with its clear connotation of eastern ‘paganism’ and apostasy. And they further leveraged the Old Testament in order to reign Dei Gratia: as divine sovereignty, whether as Popes or Emperors (i.e. Charlemagne), demanding the unreserved fealty and discipline of their subjects. This Frankish ‘turn’ towards a ‘Judeo-Christianity’ gave Europe its feudalism; resulted in the obliteration of the Cathars as an exemplar punishment for ill-discipline; and saw the imposition of its Civilisational model (Judeo-Christianity) on the Middle East, via militarised Crusades. West Christianity was infused with the Hebraic textual tradition, then – and again, of course, with the rise of Protestantism. East Christianity (Orthodox Christianity) never was. The two Churches were split asunder at the Great Schism (1054).
This is the point: The Israeli civilisational vision may not be exactly the same as America’s, but America’s archetypal cultural stories – Abraham commanded to sacrifice his son – come from the Hebrew Bible. In short, the American exercise of power has never been more ‘Frankish’, as it were. And the exercise of it, increasingly is justified in terms of Israeli language – viz the targeted assassination of Qasem Soleimani.
This is the principal message to Tuesday’s events: When those on the American Right (such as Steve Bannon) speak incessantly of the need to sustainAmerica’s Judeo-Christian heritage, they almost certainly would see an Israeli project to spread its Pax Judaica right across the Middle East as a clear civilisational ‘win’ for America too. Trump may not be prepared to go to war for Israel, but others in the US Establishment view America ‘winning again’ in the wider civilisational war, as an existential issue for America.
And this latter understanding perhaps offers yet another vantage point onto today’s politics. Why are American Evangelists so hostile to Iran? Because Iran presents the greatest obstacle to Israel’s Pax Judaica hegemony; or, is it more the case that the demise or implosion of the Islamic Republic, would constitute a civilisational ‘win’ for America and Israel, almost on a par with America’s Cold War ‘win’ over Communism? Is that what the withdrawal from the JCPOA – for the Evangelists, at least – was all about? A step on the way towards America, starting to ‘win again’ – towards Judeo-Christianity maintaining ‘system leadership?
The day after two US drones fired missiles that killed Iranian general Qassem Soleimani, President Trump gave a press conference where he explained his action by saying: “We took action last night to stop a war. We do not take action to start a war.”
To what war was Trump referring?
In the run-up to the 2016 US presidential election, Trump’s ‘America First’ policy spooked the Israelis because it reeked of isolationism and possible divestment from the Middle East. As everyone (or at least everyone in Israel) ‘knows’, if the US left the Middle East, Israel would soon be ‘overrun by Muslim hordes’ and left with little option but to use its ‘Samson Option‘ and take as many of its Arab ‘enemies’ down with it.
These fears were assuaged, to some extent, by Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Iranian nuclear deal, turn the sanction screws on Tehran, and move the US embassy in Israel to Jerusalem. Of course, these favors to Israel were, to a large extent, purchased in advance by way of a $25 million Trump campaign donation (the largest donor to any campaign in 2016) by Jewish casino mogul Sheldon Adelson. After Trump’s election win, Adelson gave another $5 million to his inauguration, the largest single presidential inaugural donation ever made. According to US politician Newt Gingrich, Adelson’s “central value” is Israel, and given that in 2013 Adelson said that the US “should drop a nuclear bomb on Iran”, I’m inclined to believe Gingrich.
But Israeli pathological fears of abandonment by the goyim are deeply entrenched and impossible to dispel, and no doubt were reawakened by a November 2018 interview that Trump gave to the Washington Post. When Trump was asked about whether sanctions should be imposed on Saudi Arabia for the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, he responded: [emphasis mine]
“I just feel that it’s very, very important to maintain that relationship [with Riyadh]. It’s very important to have Saudi Arabia as an ally, if we’re going to stay in that part of the world. Now, are we going to stay in that part of the world?**One reason to is Israel. Oil is becoming less and less of a reason, because we’re producing more oil now than we’ve ever produced. So, you know, all of a sudden it gets to a point where you don’t have to stay there.”**
The 2003 invasion and destruction of Iraq and removal of Saddam Hussein was a plot hatched by US/Israeli Neocons to do away, once and for all, with (among other things) Ba’athism, an ideology that sought to unite several Middle Eastern nations under [nominally] secular, socialist pan-Arabism (a serious threat to Israel). While the chaos spread by the US invasion and occupation achieved that goal, it also opened the way for Iran to increase its influence among Iraq’s Shia Muslims – who constitute 65% of that country’s population – and who had been held in check by Saddam, a Sunni Muslim (Iran is 90% Shia). Over the last 10 years, this growing Iranian influence has led to increasingly strident calls from Israel for ‘something to be done’ about Iran.
In the last year we have seen repeated Israeli airstrikes on what are labeled ‘Iranian military targets’ across the Levant, including several Israeli airstrikes on Syria, Iraq and Lebanon, multiple coordinated attacks on oil tankers in the Persian Gulf – which, though initially blamed on Iran, did not provoke a war because regional investigations ‘proved inconclusive’ – and what was likely an Israeli false-flag operation targeting major Saudi oil refineries (also tepidly blamed on Iran).
The primary reason for Israel’s increasing anxiety about Iran is the significant progress that Iran has made in forming political and military alliances inside Iraq (a direct result of the Israel-inspired destruction of the country by the US) and across the wider region, and the fact that it is today the only country in the region with the human and military resources (and intent) to pose a threat to the Jewish state’s desire for regional hegemony.
Recently released diplomatic cables dating from 2014-15 detail the extent of Iran’s influence inside the Iraqi government, showing how Iranian intelligence officers have co-opted much of the Iraqi government’s cabinet, infiltrated its military leadership, and even tapped into a network of sources once run by the CIA. In the 4-5 years since then, Iranian influence has only grown and, from an Israeli perspective, reached a ‘red line’ point where Iraq could be used as a staging ground for attacks on Israel.
Given this, and Trump’s talk of there being “less and less reason” for the US to remain in the Middle East combined with the upcoming Iraqi parliament vote to officially demand the removal of US forces from the country, it’s likely that the killing of Soleimani was a negotiated (by Trump) alternative to a relatively imminent, large-scale Israeli attack on Iranian assets in Iraq, and possibly Iran itself. Such an attack would have sparked a real war between Israel and Iran, which would inevitably have drawn in the US. This is, I propose, what Trump meant when he said that “we took action last night to stop a war.”
In this scenario, public statements made by Trump administration officials that killing Soleimani was necessary to stop “significant strikes against Americans” in the region can be understood as necessary lies to cover up the truth: that rather than protecting its own immediate interests, the US government was acting to prevent Israel from doing something dangerously irrational that would threaten the lives of millions in the Middle East and beyond.
What US officials privately told their Iranian counterparts soon after the assassination fits this scenario. Rear-Admiral Ali Fadavi, deputy commander of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards, told Iranian state television that “the Americans resorted to diplomatic measures” the very next morning. Fadavi said Washington asked Tehran to respond “in proportion.” They “even said that,**if you want to get revenge, get revenge in proportion to what we did”** which makes the entire situation seem like something of a sordid geopolitical game. This evening, rockets were fired at the US ‘green zone’ in Baghdad. Perhaps that is Tehran’s proportionate response.
Then again, it’s possible that there is more than mere geopolitical pragmatism motivating certain members of the Trump administration…
As readers may recall, the USS Liberty was attacked by Israel during the six-day war in 1967, as it sailed at 5 knots in international waters off the Sinai coast. Of 294 crew members, 34 were killed and 171 wounded in the attack. The Israeli government claimed and continues to claim that its military confused the Liberty with an Egyptian supply ship, the El Quseir, formerly used to transport horses.
The Israeli government apologized for this “tragic mistake” and agreed to pay compensation. Israel’s explanation for the “mistake” was at the time accepted at face value by the U.S. government. The surviving crew members, however, consistently claim that the attackers knew they targeted an American ship they intended to sink, leaving no witnesses alive. One of the surviving crew members, James M. Ennes, Jr., published in 1979 the first book on this event, “Assault on the Liberty”, which demonstrated beyond reasonable doubt that the Israelis deliberately attempted to sink the Liberty in the knowledge that it was an American ship and that the U.S. authorities, led by President Lyndon B. Johnson, intended to cover-up this fact. These two opposing views cannot be reconciled. Most writings on the Liberty case focus on this dispute.
Yet, in 2003, a book by British investigative journalist Peter Hounam (“Operation Cyanide: Why the Bombing of the USS Liberty Nearly Caused World War III”) and its accompanying BBC documentary film from 2002 (“USS Liberty: Dead in the Water”), changed the framework of debate.
In his book, the author
- puts to rest the legend that the attackers mistook the Liberty for an Egyptian ship;
- demonstrates that both the Israeli and the U.S. governments have colluded in covering up the facts;
- that both governments have used lies and obfuscation as part of the cover-up; and
- that the Liberty’s true mission was never revealed. Documents declassified since then not only support Hounam’s revisionist narrative but suggest that the White House intended for the Liberty to be attacked and its crew killed.
In 2018, Joan Mellen published another book on the USS Liberty (“Blood in the Water: How the U.S. and Israel Conspired to Ambush the USS Liberty”). The author corroborates largely Hounam’s findings and complements these with new testimonies. She, too, concludes that the attack on the Liberty was a joint U.S.-Israel false-flag operation aimed at toppling the Nasser regime in Egypt.
While it is now generally accepted – including by former U.S. military leaders – that the attack was no mistake but a deliberate attempt by Israel to sink an American ship, questions remain: Why was the USS Liberty sent to the zone of war and even denied military escort? What was the purpose of the attack on the USS Liberty? Why is this issue surrounded by such secrecy lasting until now? An attempt to shed some light on these questions will be made in this essay.
The NSO Group, a tech outfit based in Herzliya, a stone’s throw from Tel Aviv, specialises in producing such invasive software tools as Pegasus. The reputation of Pegasus is considerable, supposedly able to access data on targeted phones including switching on their cameras and microphones.
NSO’s spyware merchandise has now attained a certain, viral notoriety. When Mexican investigative journalist Javier Valdez Cárdenas was butchered in broad daylight on a street in Culiacán, the capital of the Mexican state of Sinaloa, something reeked. The killing on May 15, 2017 had been designated a cartel hit, an initially plausible explanation given Valdez’s avid interest in prying into the affairs of organised crime in Sinaloa. But the smell went further. As Mexican media outlets reported in June 2017, the government of former president Enrique Peña Nieto had purchased the good merchandise of Pegasus. Three Mexican agencies had purchased spyware to the tune of $80 million since 2011.
Since then, Canadian research group Citizen Lab, in collaboration with Mexican digital rights outfit R3D and freedom of expression group Article 19, have made the case that the widow of the slain journalist, Griselda Triana, became a target of Pegasus spyware within 10 days of her husband’s death in 2017. According to the report, she was also targeted “a week after infection attempts against two of Valdez’s colleagues, Andrés Villareal and Ismael Bojórquez.” The group behind the infection attempts, named RECKLESS-1, is alleged to have links with the Mexican government.
Canadian-based Saudi dissident Omar Abdulaziz can also count himself amongst those targeted by Pegasus. In 2018, he claimed that his phone was tapped by NSO-made spyware, leading to a gruesome implication: that the Saudi authorities would have had access to hundreds of messages exchanged with the doomed Saudi journalist and fellow comrade-in-dissent Jamal Khashoggi.
In December, a suit was filed in Israel by Abdulaziz’s representatives Alaa Mahajna and Mazen Masri, alleging that the NSO Group had hacked his phone in the service of Riyadh. In court papers, it was alleged that the dissident was harangued by the same individuals behind Khashoggi’s murder, insisting that he pack his bags and return to Saudi Arabia.
￼Buried in the court documentation was the receipt of a text message purportedly tracking the shipment of a package; instead, it masked a link to the NSO Group. Once clicked, the link installed the spyware, turning the phone into an effective agent of surveillance. Soon after this took place, Abdulaziz’s family home in Jidda was raided by Saudi security forces. Two brothers were subsequently detained.
Last January, Maariv, an Israeli daily, investigated reports about telephone spyware supposedly used to bug the phone of the murdered Khashoggi. Khashoggi’s ending at the Saudi embassy in Istanbul, facilitated by a death squad, was not handiwork NSO wanted to be associated with. The group had been, according to a statement in December, “licensed for the sole use of providing governments and law enforcement agencies the ability to lawfully fight terrorism and crime”. Misuse of products would lead to investigation and, depending on appropriate findings, a suspension or termination of the contract.
Shalev Hulio, the company’s CEO, was clear to emphasise his humanity, before distancing himself and his company from the killing. “As a human being and as an Israeli, what happened to Khashoggi was a shocking murder.” Hulio was also adamant that “Khashoggi was not targeted by any NSO product or technology, including listening, monitoring, location tracking and intelligence collection.” Could such precise denials be inadvertent confessions?
The cooperative umbrella for Israel is broadening. It seeks allies, or at least some form of accommodation with regional powers, to counter common enemies. With Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, one common foe remains a constant: Iran. The Israeli state’s licensing of such companies as the NSO Group implicates the policy of permitting the distribution of Pegasus and such products. License their use; license their consequences. Molly Malekar, of Amnesty International’s Israeli office, puts it simply: “By continuing to approve of NSO Group, the Ministry of Defence is practically admitting to knowingly cooperating with NSO Group as their software is used to commit human rights abuses.” Monitoring and killing dissidents and intrepid journalists tend to be nasty by-products. They, in a sense, have become the modern merchants of death, whose clients remain unsavoury regimes.
The Nahala Movement, campaigning on an end to the two-state solution through a rapid settlement of all West Bank territory, joined the rightist factions in modeling a settlement vision pushed by former Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir, also an early member of the Lehi paramilitary organization.
Their statement read:
“I hereby commit to be loyal to the land of Israel, not to cede one inch of our inheritance from our forefathers. I hereby commit to act to realize the settlement plan for the settlement of 2 million Jews in Judea and Samaria in accordance with Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir’s plan, as well as to encourage and lead the redemption of all the lands throughout Judea and Samaria. I commit to act to cancel the declaration of two states for two peoples and replace it with the stately declaration: The land of Israel: One country for one people.”
The plan, upheld by New Right and Likud members, seeks to annex 61 percent of West Bank territory, threatening 297,000 Palestinians by the settlements.
In comparison, the 1967 mass exodus saw the displacement of between 280,000 and 325,000 Palestinians from their homes and lands.
The main proponents of the plan include former Jewish Home and now New Right members Naftali Bennett, the current Education Minister of the Zionist entity who recently accused Donald Trump of planning a “Palestinian state over our heads,” and Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked.
While mobilization of the most recent settlement project went into full force this week, it followed a trajectory that took root far before early February.
This plan falls under the framework of last summer’s Jewish nation-state law, the Section 7 of Israel’s Nation-State Law, which where “developing Jewish communities” was legitimized as a “national value” and that the Zionist entity would “act to encourage, promote, and establish them.”
Last October, Shaked said that she was for the total annexation of Area C, additionally recommending that ‘Israel’ nationalize the Palestinians living there as Israeli citizens in the process.
The right-wing faction estimated that “only 80,000” Palestinians living there would need citizenship.
In a January 2018 Knesset debate, Shaked vowed that Israel would remain in the occupied West Bank “for 5,000 years” in support of annexing the West Bank.
In January, Bennett and Shaked also supported the opening of a new ‘apartheid road’ connecting Jerusalem with the northern settlements was met with relative silence
Area C, under complete IOF control, faces tight restrictions on issuing Israeli approved building permits. As a result, Palestinian homes and buildings face routine demolitions and Palestinians systematically suffer from forced evictions and homelessness.
According to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs in the West Bank, 73 Palestinian structures have been demolished and 119 Palestinians have been displaced in just the first two months of 2019 alone.
On 12 October 2000, while sitting in the port of Aden, Yemen, the USS Cole was allegedly attacked by some guy called al-Badawi and his accomplices. A small boat was allegedly loaded it with approximately 500lbs of explosives and some ready-made suicide bombers who then drove it alongside the Cole and…Kaboom. Below is a photo of the damage to the ship.￼
Media reports initially claimed that “conventional explosives” were used. That was generally understood to mean something like a ‘fertilizer bomb’ sufficiently unsophisticated for non-state actors and in keeping with attacks by others groups. Here’s an image of the damage caused by a typical 500lb ‘fertilizer bomb’. The bomb explodes outwards and upwards in all directions and the damage is widespread. As you have probably realized already, the damage to the Cole didn’t fit the profile of such a bomb, so soon after the attack the narrative changed:
Officials said examination of the Cole indicated that the explosive used was even more sophisticated than initially thought. The penetrating force and the damage deep in the interior strongly suggested that the bomb was a “shaped charge,” designed to focus the explosion rather than allow it to spread in all directions, as with a typical truck bomb, officials said.
“With every piece of information, it becomes a more sophisticated operation,” one official said.
The officials have not disclosed the specific type of device used, though the use of a directed explosive led to speculation that the device operated like an warhead. Such a device is a more sophisticated weapon than those used by most terrorist organizations, and possibly came from a military stockpile.
”I can’t think of a major terrorist operation that has involved, essentially, hardware of that magnitude,” said Daniel Benjamin, a former terrorism analyst on the National Security Council and now a senior fellow at the United States Institute of Peace in Washington.
At the time, the BBC reported that: “the [Yemeni] president said samples of explosives taken from the destroyer had been identified by US investigators as of a type available only in Israel, the USA, and two Arab countries” (two Arab countries that get it from the US or Israel). He further stated: “we believe Israel might be involved in such incidents.”
How does one explain Canada’s contradictory foreign policy regarding Palestine and Israel?
On December 4, Secretary General of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), Saeb Erekat, praised Canada’s commitment not to follow the footsteps of the US Donald Trump Administration by transferring its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. But there is little worth praising here. Respecting the internationally-recognized status of Jerusalem is legally-binding commitment to international law. The fact that the US chose to violate the law, hardly makes the opposite act heroic in itself.
Only five days earlier, on November 30, Canada joined a tiny minority of states, including Israel, the US, Australia and the Marshall Islands to vote "no" against a United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) resolution titled, "Peaceful Settlement on the Question of Palestine."
The Canadian government that is keen to present itself as a model, neoliberal, progressive country, even the antithesis to the US’ hawkish policies, voted against a resolution that calls "for intensified efforts by the parties … to conclude a final peace settlement." If you find such behavior confusing, then you are not paying attention. Canada has not changed at all. It is our understanding of Canadian foreign policy that has almost always been marred with a true lack of understanding. And there is a good reason for that. The Canadian government has mastered the art of political branding. The only period in modern American history that is comparable to Canada’s successful political propaganda was the presidency of Barack Obama.
Obama has deported 2.5 million immigrants, compared to the 2 million deported by his predecessor, George W. Bush; he dropped more bombs and did his utmost to bail America’s most corrupt financial institutions; yet somehow many liberals thought of him as the ideological marriage of Che Guevara and Malcolm X, with the refined eloquence of James Baldwin.
Canada’s Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau – seen as the "human face of neoliberalism" – is an even more successful brand than Obama. Unlike the former US president, there is very little discussion about Trudeau’s undeserved credentials. While positioned as the political opposite of former conservative Canadian Prime Minister, Stephen Harper, they are both committed to the ideology of neoliberalism. Trudeau’s "human face of neoliberalism" is nothing but a carefully-constructed mask meant to hide the hypocritical and militant policies that Canada continues to lead.
Nothing exemplifies Trudeau’s duplicitous policies than his horrific record on Palestine.
As the world has witnessed the oppression and ethnic cleansing of Palestinians, many people have risen in protest. In response, the Israeli government and certain of its advocates have conducted a campaign to crack down on this activism, running roughshod over civil liberties (and the English language) in the process.
The mechanism of this crackdown is the redefinition of “antisemitism” to include criticism of Israel, and the insertion of this definition into the bodies of law of various countries.
Where most people would consider “antisemitism” to mean bigotry against Jewish people (and rightly consider it abhorrent), for two decades a campaign has been underway to replace that definition with an Israel-centric definition. That definition can then be used to block speech and activism in support of Palestinian human rights as “hate.” Various groups are applying this definition in law enforcement evaluations of possible crimes.
Proponents of this Israel-centric definition have promoted it step by step in various arenas, from the U.S. State Department and European governments to local governments around the U.S. and universities.
While this effort has taken place over the last two decades, it is snowballing rapidly at this time. The definition is increasingly being used to curtail free speech and academic freedom, as well as political activism.
Furthermore, such politicizing of an important word may reduce its effectiveness when real antisemitism occurs, doing a disservice to victims of true bigotry.
As of this writing, the U.S. Congress has endorsed the distorted definition, the governments of the UK and Austria have officially adopted it (in December and April, respectively), various U.S. State legislatures are considering it, and numerous universities are using it to delineate permissible discourse. Many representatives and heads of other states around the world have embraced the new meaning, even if they have yet to officially implement it.
This article will examine the often interconnected, incremental actions that got us where we are, the current state of affairs, and the public relations and lobbying efforts that are promoting this twisting of the definition of “antisemitism” — often under cover of misleadingly named “anti-racism” movements.
Uri Avnery, one of Israel’s most prominent journalists and a seminal peace activist who was among the first Israelis to advocate for a sovereign Palestinian state, died in Tel Aviv on Monday morning. He was 94 years old.
Born Helmut Ostermann to a bourgeois family in Beckum, Germany in 1923, Avnery’s family moved to Palestine in 1933, shortly after the Nazis came to power. They settled in Tel Aviv. Just a few years after their arrival, Avnery joined the Irgun, the pre-state right-wing Zionist militia. Too young to take part in its militant actions, which included attacks against British soldiers and Arab civilians, Avnery distributed leaflets and edited the Revisionist journal Ba-Ma’avak (“In the Struggle”).
He left the Irgun in 1942, because he was uncomfortable with its harsh anti-Arab position, and joined the Givati Brigade of the Haganah during the 1948 War. During the war he wrote dispatches from the field for Haaretz newspaper, which he later compiled into a book. Avnery was wounded twice — the second time, toward the end of the war, seriously; he spent the last months of his army service convalescing and was discharged in the summer of 1949.
Avnery initially supported the idea of one state, in which a single nation would arise as a union of Arabs and Hebrews — the latter a term he preferred over Jews, since he advocated a state for the Hebrew nation rather than the Jewish people.
During the mid-1960s, Avnery believed that the national Hebrew movement was a natural ally of the Arab nation; he advocated cooperation between the two, under a joint name. By the end of the June 1967 war, however, Avnery changed his views: He advocated the establishment of a Hebrew state alongside an Arab one, as per the 1947 UN Partition Plan.
If, according to Oscar Wilde, truth is a matter of style, even more so history is a matter of opinion. An obvious and unnecessary remark, were it not for the anger of some when they dissent with the thoughts of others. To them I would recommend, with all the earnestness at my disposal, the recollection of Mark Twain’s topic and soothing ruling that, “In all matters of opinion our adversaries are insane.”
We have no other device for returning through time, except that which operates in our minds with the materials provided by past generations. Therefore I declare myself a humble vessel, into which some ancient and nearer historians have poured the fruits of their findings.
Findings that – linked by an Arianna’s thread – constitute an attempt to ascertain some ambiguities, disentangle some intricacies, and recover the meaning of seemingly inexplicable events. Some of which are lost in the darkness of antiquity and some are current, but otherwise only explainable by wholesale attribution to the inexorable and unstoppable march of folly.
We’ll start with the Arabs of the first millennium and some related little known events. Indexes really, tiny bubbles compared to their subsequent volumes, but in which there is seen the baby figure of the giant mass of things to come at large.
The Arabs, as we know, set themselves to conquer the world with the scimitar. By the way, the word ‘Arab’ originally referred to those Bedouins in the (now) Arabian Peninsula, who owned means of transportation, that is, camels. They were the elite among the camel-less Bedouins, and called themselves ‘Arab’.
As we are (were) taught in High School, Charles Martel checked the expansionist drive of the Islamized Arabs in Europe at the Battle of Poitiers, in 732 AD.
The original rules of correct Islamic practices, covering every possible human contingency, social and individual, from birth to death, went under the now familiar name of Shari’ah. Which included the Qur’an, plus certain collections of reports (hadith). Explaining the Shari’ah to the brethren was the task of the teachers (ulama).
But as Ovid wrote in his “Metamorphoses”, times change and we change with them (“Tempora mutantur et nos mutamur in illis”). After the battle of Poitiers, the Islamic world, the Caliphate, underwent remarkable transformations and evolutions. Incidentally, the term “Caliphate” has been recently associated with the ridiculously cruel and bestially grotesque ISIS. As we will see later, this is a charade and a net-trap to catch human woodcocks. ISIS’ lugubrious use of the term “Caliphate,” diffused by all arts and methods of propagation and propaganda, has nothing to do with the historic Caliphate linked to the original Arabic expansion. Though, as we know, the credulous mistake sound bites for knowledge.
The dramatic evolution of early Islamic civilization led to an equally dramatic progress in all the arts and sciences that we associate with the term ‘culture’ – mathematics, geometry, architecture, chemistry (then indistinguishable from alchemy), astronomy, medicine and philosophic speculation. For example, from the astronomer Musa al-Khwarizmi, Western Europe derived the word ‘algorithm’ – recently connected with a sinister system for deleting from the public media “fakist” (from ‘fake’) information. Which is new-speak for “information unpalatable to those whom we know who they are, but should not say it aloud.”
Toledo’s mosque and Granada’s Alhambra were and are peaks and wonders of human art. Elements of Arabic architecture heavily influenced the magnificent Gothic Cathedrals that rose in Europe during the 11th, 12th and 13 hundredth.
Of particular interest to us is the evolution among the speculatively minded sections of Arabic culture. Though the Shari’ah remained the foundation of religious faith and sanctioned social customs, a cultural movement developed, a kind of Arabic intellectual perestroika called ‘Falsafah’ – a rendering of the Greek ‘philosophia.’ Accompanied by an Arabic glasnosts, that is, openness to debate, appropriately called ‘Kalem,’ Arabic for ‘discussion.’
Two characters important for this analysis were Avicenna (Ibn-Sina), d. in 1074, and Averroe’ (Ibn-Rushd), d. in 1111. Avicenna, among other things, published a 5-volume treatise on medicine, used until the 1500 in European universities. Avicenna and others translated Aristotle, Plato and various Greek philosophers into Arabic and Hebrew. That is, they introduced Greek philosophy, culture and values to the rest of Europe. St. Thomas Aquinas (d. in 1274), who extensively commented Aristotle, blending his teachings with Christian philosophy, repeatedly quotes and makes reference to Avicenna in his writings.
Averroe’, on the other hand, stood on the radical side of the Kalem. He was a Pantheist. God and the world are one, he said. Reason, not faith can explain the Universe.
Less known, but crucial for the future history of the Arabic world, was another thinker named Al-Ghazali. He summarized his views on Falsafah and Kalem in a book meaningfully titled, “Deliverer from Error.” In essence, Falsafah and Kalem – he said – will lead the Arabs astray. For only the Quran and the Shar’ia are the models, necessary and sufficient to guide the Arabic nation through the uncertainties of life with the certainties of faith.
The purported decadence of Arabic culture – or rather the lack of further development after brilliant beginnings – starts with the victory of Al-Ghazali’s ‘fundamentalism.’
One assumed, barely unsaid but broadly hinted justification for the Israeli-driven America’s destruction of Iraq, Libya, Syria, Yemen, for the organized ‘color revolutions’ in Egypt and Tunisia, and the support for the land grab of Palestine and Palestinian genocide – is that Arabic culture is ‘inferior.’
As drums beat again for war — this time on Iran—-the VIPS’ warning is again being disregarded as it was before the Iraq debacle and this time VIPS fear the consequences will be all-caps CATASTROPHIC.
August 1, 2018
MEMORANDUM FOR: The President
FROM: Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS)
SUBJECT: Intelligence on Iran Fails the Smell Test
As the George W. Bush administration revved up to attack Iraq 15 years ago, we could see no compelling reason for war. We decided, though, to give President Bush the benefit of the doubt on the chance he had been sandbagged by Vice President Dick Cheney and others. We chose to allow for the possibility that he actually believed the “intelligence” that Colin Powell presented to the UN as providing “irrefutable and undeniable” proof of WMD in Iraq and a “sinister nexus” between Saddam Hussein and al Qaeda.
To us in VIPS it was clear, however, that the “intelligence” Powell adduced was bogus. Thus, that same afternoon (Feb. 5, 2003) we prepared and sent to President Bush a Memorandum like this one, urging him to seek counsel beyond the “circle of those advisers clearly bent on a war for which we see no compelling reason and from which we believe the unintended consequences are likely to be catastrophic.”
We take no satisfaction at having been correct — though disregarded — in predicting the political and humanitarian disaster in Iraq. Most Americans have been told the intelligence was “mistaken.” It was not; it was out-and-out fraud, in which, sadly, some of our former colleagues took part.
Five years after Powell’s speech, the Chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee minced few words in announcing the main bipartisan finding of a five-year investigation. He said: “In making the case for war, the Administration repeatedly presented intelligence as fact when in reality it was unsubstantiated, contradicted, or even non-existent. As a result, the American people were led to believe that the threat from Iraq was much greater than actually existed.”
Iran Now in Gunsight
As drums beat again for a military attack — this time on Iran, we Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity and other experienced, objective analysts are, by all appearances, being disregarded again. And, this time, we fear the consequences will be all-caps CATASTROPHIC — in comparison with the catastrophe of Iraq.