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Signs of the Times: The World for People who Think. Featuring independent, unbiased, alternative news and commentary on world events.
Signs of the Times
  1. A majority of people who were infected with the Omicron variant didn't even realise they had COVID-19, according to a new study from Cedars-Sinai Medical Centre in the U.S. Sky News has the story - but be warned. The journalist who's written this up thinks the finding is a reason we should be particularly worried about Omicron. After all, if people don't know they've got it, they won't take steps to stop themselves infecting others. I would have thought the more obvious take is that if more than half of people infected with Omicron don't know they've got it, we really shouldn't be that worried about it. More here. The lack of public awareness about being infected means that people can't take steps to prevent themselves transmitting the virus further, which is a major stumbling block for addressing new waves of the pandemic. "More than one in every two people who were infected with Omicron didn't know they had it," said Dr. Susan Cheng, a corresponding author of the study which is...
  2. Our tale begins in medias res and ends in nihilo. Johnny watches as the ashes of his arch-nemesis Jimmy's home rise up to the heavens, the flames casting little Petey's form in stark silhouette as he blows out the match. The screams of the family, now barely audible, are quenched in the roar of the consuming fire. "But Petey, this isn't what I thought you meant!" "But Johnny, I said the rich could burn in hell, and you agreed." Johnny holds the stool steady as little Petey adjusts the noose around Father Johnson's neck. The makeshift gallows they've constructed under Mrs. Montgomery's giant oak tree is sturdy. It will bear the weight of the neighborhood priest. "But Petey, this isn't what I thought you meant." "But Johnny, I said God is a tyrant and his priests corrupt, and you agreed." Johnny holds the gun, his arms outstretched and trembling. Tied to the chairs across from him are his parents. A hand placed on his shoulder gives gentle encouragement. Little Petey is standing...
  3. Those who routinely read these substack essays and our social media posts know that Jill and I have been on a journey of discovery, a root cause analysis approach, trying to make sense of the horrid public policy decision making that has resulted in the COVIDcrisis. Key milestones along the way have included recognizing the role of the trusted news initiative (see here and here), the rise and global penetration of advocacy journalism, developing a deeper understanding of the role of the World Economic Forum/Great Reset and its young leader training/indoctrination program, the process of Mass formation or Mass Psychosis (the psychological basis of totalitarianism), widespread regulatory and other forms of government capture, the role of the administrative state, exploitation of the "crisis" by central banks and massive investment funds, the weaponization of infectious disease fearporn as both a media business model and a political tool, "Nudge" technology and governmental behavior...
  4. More and More Are Seeing Through the Lies As Amnesty International confirms the inconvenient truths, which many independent journalists and political observers already knew, about the Ukrainian army's behavior in Donbass, it's worth examining how manipulating the truth has become — not only an everyday occurrence but a central element of the West's proxy war in Ukraine. An increasing number of mainstream journalists, commentators and ordinary individuals who had rushed to "Stand with Ukraine " are finding the inconvenient truths about the Zelensky regime and its Army harder and harder to ignore.
  5. Although this season has been rather quiet so far, a study released Tuesday shows that the first storms of the Atlantic hurricane season have been firing up about five days earlier per decade since 1979. Traditionally, the start of the hurricane season is June 1. The study also found that the first named storm to make U.S. landfall has been trending earlier, by about two days per decade since 1900. This trend toward earlier onset is likely linked to climate-change-driven warming in the western Atlantic Ocean in spring, the study said, which has also shown an increasing trend during the same period. Comment: 'Likely linked', that's because even with the multi billions they have ploughed into global warming research they still can't definitively prove it, which is because the whole premise is erroneous: Ozone hole above Antarctica is one of the largest ever, it's still growing, and may be linked to the COOLING stratosphere
  6. Military-ruled Myanmar plans to import Russian gasoline and fuel oil to ease supply concerns and rising prices, a junta spokesperson said, the latest developing country to do so amid a global energy crisis. The Southeast Asian country has maintained friendly ties with Russia, even as both remain under a raft of sanctions from Western countries - Myanmar for a military coup that overthrew an elected government last year, and Russia for its invasion of Ukraine, which it calls a "special military operation". Russia is seeking new customers for its energy in the region as its biggest export destination, Europe, will impose an embargo on Russian oil in phases later this year.
  7. Aleksandr Darchiyev, Director of the North America Department of the Russian Foreign Ministry, said in an interview with TASS a few days ago that declaring Russia a "state sponsor of terrorism" would mean "Washington crossing the point of no return with the most serious collateral damage to bilateral relations". Recall that the US Senate recently passed a resolution calling on the State Department to recognise Russia as a "state sponsor of terrorism" because of "the events in Chechnya and military operations in Georgia, Syria and Ukraine". This initiative is also supported by the US House of Representatives. However, according to US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, the US administration believes that including Russia on the list of "countries that sponsor terrorism" will not have a real effect. Blinken also said that the measures already taken against Russia are almost equivalent to measures against any other "state sponsor of terrorism". Therefore, they say, we are talking about...
  8. Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday that the West is trying to contain the formation of a multipolar world by activating old conflicts to preserve its hegemony. Speaking at the 2022 Moscow Conference on International Security, Putin said the Western countries are striving to hold the countries and peoples in chains of the neocolonial order. "Their (Western) hegemony means stagnation for the whole world, for the whole civilization, (it means) obscurantism, the abolition of culture, and neoliberal totalitarianism," he said. In an attempt to preserve their domination, the US and its allies rudely interfere in the internal affairs of the countries, organize coups, civil wars, provocations, use blackmail, and pressure to subdue states to its will, Putin added. "In these conditions, we have decided to conduct a special military operation in Ukraine in full compliance with the UN Charter.
  9. The Chinese envoy to the United Kingdom has warned that British and American interference on Taiwan could result in a war, claiming that Beijing's ties with London are now at a crossroads over the island. In a Guardian op-ed on Tuesday, Chinese ambassador to the UK Zheng Zeguang offered his government's stance on the territorial feud, while declaring that Taiwan had become a "touchstone issue" for China, the US and the UK alike. "Over the years, the US has been playing the 'Taiwan card' to contain China by approving arms sales to the island, upgrading its relations with the authorities there and hollowing out the one-China principle," the envoy wrote, referring to a policy that discourages foreign states from forming diplomatic relations with Taipei, which has long been self-governed. 'Taiwan independence' means war and will lead to a dead end. Opposing and defeating such attempts is meant to avoid war and safeguard peace and stability in the region.
  10. A disturbing trend is on the rise in the US, where violent crimes are being perpetrated by some of the youngest members of society. But given the political divisiveness that has fractured the nation, pinning down blame for this phenomenon is no easy task. Philadelphia is popularly known as the 'City of Brotherly Love' but murder statistics tell a different tale. In the school year of 2020-2021, 753 public school students in this Pennsylvania city of 1.5 million people were shot by their fellow classmates. Police statistics show that through mid-November, 31 fatal shooting victims were under the age of 18 - more than in all of 2020 and triple that number from 2015. At the same time, 30 people under the age of 18 have been arrested for homicides in 2021 - six times the figure of 2019. Heartbreaking as it is to see children become the victims of violent crime, equally unsettling is the sheer barbarity of the offenses they themselves are accused of committing.
  11. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has acknowledged flaws in its response to the Covid-19 pandemic and announced plans to restructure the agency, to rehabilitate its public image and better respond to future public health crises. "For 75 years, CDC and public health have been preparing for COVID-19, and in our big moment, our performance did not reliably meet expectations," CDC director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said on Wednesday. "As a long-time admirer of this agency and a champion for public health, I want us all to do better." Comment: "Not reliably meeting expectations" is a gross understatement of what the CDC did. How about "ruined people's lives, businesses, and created a national epidemic of mental health issues" just for a start? The overhaul announcement follows an internal review that found the CDC's "rigid, compartmentalized bureaucracy" undermined its response to Covid-19 and slowed its data analysis and releases of public advisories. When pandemic...
  12. China shipped in more than 80 tons of gold from Switzerland last month, Bloomberg reported on Thursday, citing data from the Swiss Federal Customs Administration. The volume is reportedly more than double the June total, and eight times more than in May. The surge in gold imports to a five-year high indicates that Chinese demand for the precious metal is picking up, after a lull due to Covid lockdowns in the country's major cities. "The market's still not great, but it's definitely a lot better than it was in April," Nikos Kavalis, managing director at Metals Focus consultancy, explained to Bloomberg.
  13. Madrid (AFP) - A huge megalithic complex of more than 500 standing stones has been discovered in southern Spain which could be one of the largest in Europe, archaeologists told AFP Thursday. The stones were discovered on a plot of land in Huelva, a province which flanks the southernmost part of Spain's border with Portugal, near the Guadiana River. Spanning some 600 hectares (1,500 acres), the land had been earmarked for an avocado planation. But before granting the permit, the regional authorities requested a survey in light of the site's possible archaeological significance -- and revealed the presence of the stones. "This is the biggest and most diverse collection of standing stones grouped together in the Iberian peninsula," said Jose Antonio Linares, a researcher at Huelva University and one of the project's three directors. It is likely that the oldest standing stones at the La Torre-La Janera site were erected during the second half of the sixth or fifth millennium BC, he...
  14. Finnish Prime Minister Sanna Marin has denied taking drugs after videos of a night out, in which a number of revelers could reportedly be heard discussing cocaine, were leaked online. The controversy has prompted some politicians to call for the young leader to take a drug test. "I am upset that these videos have become public. It was about me having a night out with friends. Partying - even in a boisterous way - dancing and singing," Marin told the media on Thursday morning. She denied any wrongdoing, but lamented the violation of her privacy. The party took place at a private residence several weeks ago, she said, and expected her off-duty time to remain confidential. Marin confirmed that the party that night later continued at two bars in Helsinki.
  15. This is what the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) had to say about the mRNA vaccines last summer (July 2021):
  16. Torrential downpours are battering the UK capital today, leaving many places flooded and forcing several tube stations to close. As thunderstorms batter the country's dry landscape with heavy rain, London is suffering flash floods..
  17. A state of emergency has been declared in Nelson as residents have been told to evacuate their homes immediately after the Maitai River breached its banks. Some 223 homes in Nelson have already been evacuated. Nelson Mayor Rachel Reese said the river, which runs through the city and out to Tasman Bay, breached its banks as heavy rain continues to sweep across the South Island. Flood waters are encroaching on the city centre, a video from the Collingwood St bridge shows, while search and rescue teams are now looking for people who need help in the flooded streets and suburbs.
  18. Sudden rainstorm triggers landslide and diverts river resulting in floods Sixteen people are dead and 36 others missing after a flash flood hit Qinghai province in western China amid the ongoing torrential rains, according to Chinese media reports. Heavy and sudden downpours in Datong Hui and Tu Autonomous County of Qinghai province started late on Wednesday, causing flooding in the mountains and triggering landslides, according to China's state broadcaster CCTV. The flash floods affected an area with more than 6,000 people and over 1,500 houses, CCTV said.
  19. Chinese troops will travel to Russia to take part in war games along with India, Belarus, Mongolia, Tajikistan and other largely anti-Western countries, China's defense ministry said on Wednesday, adding redundantly that China's participation in the joint exercises is "unrelated to the current international and regional situation." Last month, Moscow announced plans to hold "Vostok" (East) exercises from Aug. 30 to Sept. 5, even as it wages war in Ukraine. It said at the time that some foreign forces would participate, without naming them. It turns out that the "foreign forces" account for just under half of the world's population. China's defence ministry said its participation in the exercises was part of an ongoing bilateral annual cooperation agreement with Russia, Reuters reported. The statement said: "The aim is to deepen practical and friendly cooperation with the armies of participating countries, enhance the level of strategic collaboration among the participating parties,...
  20. Israel and Turkey announced on Wednesday the full normalization of relations and the return of their ambassadors to Ankara and Tel Aviv. Why it matters: The announcement ends a four-year diplomatic crisis that led to downgraded relations between the two non-Arab regional powers. Driving the news: The Israeli prime minister's office said in a statement the agreement was reached on Tuesday in a phone call between the director generals of the Israeli and Turkish foreign ministries. Both countries decided to upgrade the relations to full diplomatic representation and return the Israeli ambassador and consul general to Ankara and Istanbul and the Turkish ambassador and consul general to Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. What they're saying: "The normalization of ties with Turkey is an asset for regional stability and an economic benefit for the citizens of Israel," Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid said.
  21. Turkish airstrikes killed three Syrian soldiers in the countryside near Aleppo on Tuesday, Syria's SANA news network reported. Syrian forces responded by striking Turkish military sites, causing an unknown number of casualties, the outlet said. Three soldiers were killed in the strikes and six others wounded, SANA reported, citing military sources. According to these sources, Syria's armed forces "responded to the aggression, targeting the occupation sites and destroying them, causing human and material losses." Several sites belonging to Turkish-backed anti-government militants were also hit in retaliation, the report continued: "With the intensification of the provocations practiced by the Turkish regime and the repeated attacks on different areas of Syrian territory, we affirm that any attack on any military point of our armed forces will be met by a direct and immediate response on all fronts."
  22. Russian President Vladimir Putin is likely afraid to attack the city of Dnepr due to a threat that he will be cursed to death through an ancient Jewish ritual, a former Ukrainian official claims. In an interview on Friday with the news website Novoye Vremya, Gennady Korban said he had threatened in July to place the curse on the Russian leader if he attacks the city. "Pulsa diNura is a complicated, difficult procedure. It may have contributed in some way in the sense that so far they have not struck Dnepr. I knock on wood not to jinx it, God forbid, but this is how it is." Pulsa diNura, roughly translated from Aramaic as 'lashes of fire', is a ritual that is attributed to an old Kabbalistic text, though scholars believe the term was not used in the sense of a curse invoked by man.
  23. "This is their money, not ours," they wrote in a letter about billions of dollars frozen by Washington Dozens of families whose loved ones were killed in the 9/11 terrorist attack have asked President Joe Biden to ensure that billions of dollars in Afghan funds frozen by the US cannot be used to cover claims for damages against the Taliban. "Any use of the $7 billion to pay off 9/11 family member judgments is legally suspect and morally wrong," they said in a letter sent to the White House on Tuesday. Some of the signatories have filed for compensation, but don't want to be awarded money they believe "belongs to the Afghan people and the Afghan people alone." Politico was the first media outlet to report the contents of the correspondence.
  24. On 29 July 2022, three Republican US Senators (Rand Paul, KY; Ted Cruz, TX; Richard Burr, NC) asked the Director of the National Science Foundation to provide information on a variety of concerns, ranging from how decisions on funding research grants are made, to how the NSF handles political conflicts of interest among the scientists it supports. Good for them. Since its founding in 1950, the NSF has drifted far from its original mission and vision: to support basic research in universities. Among the aims was to insulate the process of scientific discovery from meddlesome politicians. No more: the NSF has harnessed itself to blatantly political aims, from the dubious "greening" of our society and nation, to the toxic agenda of "Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion". The Senators are right to lift the lid on these shenanigans. They are wasting taxpayers' money. That said, the Senators are barking up the wrong tree. The NSF, as ripe a target as it might seem, is comparatively a small...
  25. New update from Russian Chief of Nuclear, Biological and Chemical Threats, Lieutenant General, Igor Kirillov! Every time you see the guy above, you know some earth-shattering news just dropped. Normally, these updates focus on biological activity in Ukraine, but today's briefing is about a growing NUCLEAR situation at the Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant, the largest nuclear power plant (NPP) in Europe, located in south-eastern Ukraine, now under control of Russian Armed Forces. Russian MIL report that Ukrainian forces have been shelling the location since July 18th, in 12 different attacks, with a total of 50 artillery shells dropped on the largest NPP in Europe. "the Ukrainian side, together with their US handlers, are trying to play the card by causing what they believe to be a minor accident at the nuclear power plant and thus disrupting the normal and safe operation of the plant, blaming it on Russia." Ultimately Russian MIL are accusing Ukraine and "their US handlers" of trying...
  26. In the past few months, Lebanese security services have arrested more than 100 people implicated in alleged Israeli spy networks. Among these were young women tasked with photographing locations in the predominantly Shia southern suburbs of Beirut, the main stronghold of Hezbollah, and the primarily Sunni neighborhood of Tariq Al-Jadida in the western part of the city. Working for the Israelis According to investigations carried out by Lebanese security services, most of the detainees had applied online for employment opportunities, before being contacted from phone numbers belonging to Israeli citizens. Some of the accused were asked to buy local SIM cards and send them to addresses abroad.
  27. First snow fell at a height of 1,870 m above sea level in the city of Ridder, East Kazakhstan, the ridder.city Instagram account reads. The fog was expected to blanket the north of the region today. Ground frosts are forecast for the east, and northeast of the region in the nighttime, the emergency situations department of East Kazakhstan said. High wind is also set to sweep through the region locally, it said in a statement.
  28. I began my day savoring another great article by A Midwestern Doctor: What Is The Story Behind Sudden Death Syndromes? I really love the work this man is doing and highly recommend you consider reading, or at least scanning, the full article above. Many of the weird issues I've seen people in my life develop during the COVID era came into focus. And not just the COVID era, my whole life leading up to it. The dysfunctional way Medicine has enabled and covered up for poisoning damage is not new, it dates from at least WW2 and even further back.
  29. Fifth set of human skeletal remains found as drought conditions continue Another set of human skeletal remains was discovered at drought-stricken Lake Mead on Monday - the fifth set of remains recovered since May and the third to be found at the lake's Swim Beach area. National Park Service (NPS) rangers set up a perimeter in the Swim Beach area of the Lake Mead National Recreation Area in Nevada to recover the remains after responding around 8 p.m. to a report of the grim finding, the NPS said in a statement on Tuesday. The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department's dive team assisted in the recovery. Officials said that the Clark County Medical Examiner has also been contacted.
  30. China's Sichuan province has ordered all factories to shut down for six days to ease a power shortage in the region as a scorching heat wave sweeps across the country. Sichuan is a key manufacturing location for the semiconductor and solar panel industries and the power rationing will hit factories belonging to some of the world's biggest electronics companies, including Apple (AAPL) supplier Foxconn and Intel (INTC). The province is also China's lithium mining hub — a key component of electric car batteries — and the shutdown may push up the cost of the raw material, analysts said. China is facing its fiercest heat wave in six decades, with temperatures crossing 40 degrees Celsius (104 degrees Fahrenheit) in dozens of cities. The extreme heat has caused a spike in demand for air conditioning in offices and homes, putting pressure on the power grid. The drought has also depleted river water levels, reducing the amount of electricity produced at hydropower plants.
  31. A Slovak smelter will halt production by the start of October due to soaring electricity prices The Slovalco aluminum smelter in Slovakia announced on Wednesday it will shut down primary production by the end of September. "The decision to terminate primary aluminum production at Slovalco comes in response to adverse framework conditions and high electricity prices, which show no signs of improvement in the short term," the plant's majority owner, Norsk Hydro, said in a statement. It explained that the Slovalco casthouse in central Slovakia is continuing its recycling operation, serving customers in the region with 75,000 tons of recycled aluminum annually. The plant's CEO told media that the Slovalco plant was a key supplier for Slovak and other European companies. After stopping production, Europe will be forced to import aluminum from countries including Russia and China, he added. Slovalco's shutdown follows a similar decision this week to cease production at a zinc smelter in...
  32. The rain that occurred in the city of Chihuahua, Chihuahua, has left floods in several points and the authorities have called not to leave the house or to avoid certain points, on the afternoon of this Wednesday, August 17. The heavy rainfall that hit the state capital has already caused several floods and is expected to continue in the coming hours. The Chihuahua State Civil Protection Coordination reported that the forecast of rains between 3 and 6 p.m. is maintained, for which it called on the population to "maintain preventive measures and avoid leaving the house, if it is not necessary." Videos on social networks show cars trapped in the middle of streams generated by concentrations of water.
  33. Robert Habeck dismisses Germany's economic model as reliant on cheap energy imports from Russia. German Economy and Climate Action Minister Robert Habeck lamented the entirety of the country's business model on Monday, dismissing it as reliant on cheap energy imports from Russia that will never return. His comments come in tandem with his announcement of a new special tax on natural gas, which he believes will redistribute the repercussions of energy shortages on companies as well as the population in general. "Germany developed a business model that was largely based on dependence on cheap Russian gas," Habeck told reporters in Berlin, slamming the business model as meaning dependence on an "enemy" of international law, "liberal democracy and its values." "This model has failed and it is not coming back," he said. Because Russia has "arbitrarily" halted gas deliveries to the European Union, as Habeck claimed, Berlin needs to "rescue companies that have got into difficulties and...
  34. A northwest Iowa woman who was found in a ditch died after being attacked by her five Great Danes, authorities said Wednesday. A man found the woman in a rural area of Clay County on Monday but couldn't get close to her because of several large dogs, according to KTIV-TV. The Clay County Sheriff's Office says the man reported what he found and deputies determined the woman was dead. She was identified as Mindy Kiepe, 43, of Rossie. The state medical examiner said Wednesday that Kiepe died of multiple dog bites. An investigation determined Kiepe's Great Danes caused her death. Kiepe lived at a farm near where her body was found. The sheriff's office said the dogs were euthanized. Source: AP
  35. For "clear violations of the fundamental tenets of research." A senior White House climate advisor has been sanctioned by the National Academy of Sciences for violating its ethics policies. Axios reports that Jane Lubchenco, the deputy director for climate and environment at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, has been pulled up by the NAS for editing a paper later found to contain technical errors, as well as having worked with the scientists involved in it, one of which turned out to be her brother-in law.
  36. This stunning bolide was spotted over Spain on August 17, at 23:18 local time (equivalent to 21:18 universal time). It was almost as bright as the full Moon and was seen by a wide number of eyewitnesses that reported the event on social networks. The bolide was generated by a rock (a meteoroid) from an asteroid that hit the atmosphere at about 55,000 km/h. The fireball overflew the Mediterranean Sea. It began at an altitude of about 83 km over the Mediterranean between the coasts of Spain and Morocco, moved northeast, and ended at a height of around 23 km over the sea. The preliminary analysis of this event shows that the rock was not fully destroyed: a part of the meteoroid survived and fell into the sea as a meteorite. So, the meteorite cannot be recovered. This bright meteor was recorded in the framework of the SMART project, operated by the Southwestern Europe Meteor Network (SWEMN) from the meteor-observing stations located at Huelva, La Hita, CAHA, OSN, La Sagra, Sevilla, and...
  37. A deputy culture minister says the 1943 Volhyn massacres fit the definition of genocide and Kiev will have to recognize that. The mass murder of Poles by Ukrainian nationalists during the Second World War meets the definition of genocide and the government in Kiev will have to recognize this sooner or later, Poland's Deputy Minister of Culture and National Heritage Jaroslaw Sellin said on Tuesday. "They have to acknowledge it because it's a fact. It's simply a fact. A political decision was made and implemented for ethnic cleansing, the extermination of the entire national minority that has lived there for centuries," Sellin told the Polish Press Agency (PAP) during a TV interview.
  38. Facebook's parent company is imposing strict controls on information related to the upcoming midterm elections. Social media behemoth Meta is beefing up its information-control tactics as the US heads into the 2022 midterm elections, tightening rules on voting misinformation and advertising. The changes were announced in a blog post on Tuesday. The company will ban new political, social and electoral issue ads during the last week before the election, ensuring no "October surprises" - factual or otherwise - will disturb the information ecosystem. Editing existing ads will also be forbidden, and ads encouraging people not to vote or questioning the legitimacy of the results will not be permitted.
  39. Days ago, we said the next food insecurity problem that may impact Americans' eating habits could be an emerging potato shortage. Now there appears to be another issue: Tomatoes are getting squeezed, and risks of a ketchup shortage rise as a severe drought batter California's farmland. California accounts for a quarter of the world's tomato output. The worst drought in 1,200 years has forced farmers to abandon fields as crops turn to dust amid a water crisis.
  40. In a new interview with The Wall Street Journal, immortal Hague fugitive Henry Kissinger says the US is acting in a crazy and irrational way that has brought it to the edge of war with Russia and China: Mr. Kissinger sees today's world as verging on a dangerous disequilibrium. "We are at the edge of war with Russia and China on issues which we partly created, without any concept of how this is going to end or what it's supposed to lead to," he says. Could the U.S. manage the two adversaries by triangulating between them, as during the Nixon years? He offers no simple prescription. "You can't just now say we're going to split them off and turn them against each other. All you can do is not to accelerate the tensions and to create options, and for that you have to have some purpose." On the question of Taiwan, Mr. Kissinger worries that the U.S. and China are maneuvering toward a crisis, and he counsels steadiness on Washington's part. "The policy that was carried out by both parties...
  41. Faculty at the University of California-Los Angeles (UCLA) School of Law have created a database to identify and record efforts to block critical race theory (CRT) being taught in schools across the country. The database, called the CRT Forward Tracking Project, allows users to "track attacks on critical race theory" and filter the information as part of an effort to "support anti-racist education, training and research," according to the school. The project was created by UCLA's Critical Race Studies Program, founded in 2000 as the first law school program in the nation dedicated to critical race theory.
  42. Kiev has removed a range of courses from the national school curriculum. Russian language and literature courses will no longer be taught in Ukraine, according to an updated curriculum posted by the Ministry of Education on its website on Tuesday. Among the courses excluded were 'Russian and Foreign Literature', 'Russian language for general educational institutions with instruction in Russian' for grades 5-9, and instruction in Ukrainian or Russian for grades 10-11. While nearly all Russian and Belarusian books will be dropped from the school program, the ministry notes that it will allow some works by authors who wrote in Russian but whose "life and work were closely connected with Ukraine," such as Nikolay Gogol and Mikhail Bulgakov. According to the updated curriculum, foreign literature courses in Ukrainian schools will now focus on works by writers such as Jean de La Fontaine, O. Henry, Anna Gavalda, and Joseph Roth.
  43. The World Health Organization began working on an anti-fertility vaccine in the 1970s, in response to perceived overpopulation. For 20 years, the WHO's Task Force on Vaccines for Fertility Regulation worked with population control in mind. In 1993, the WHO finally announced a birth-control vaccine had successfully been created to help with "family planning." The anti-fertility vaccine uses hCG conjugated (chemically bonded) to tetanus toxoid, used in the tetanus vaccine. As a result, a woman will develop antibodies against both tetanus and hCG. HCG is the first signal that tells the woman's body she's pregnant. In response to this signal, her ovaries then produce progesterone, which maintains the pregnancy to term. By combining hCG with tetanus toxoid, it causes this crucial pregnancy hormone to be attacked and destroyed by the woman's own immune system.
  44. Scott Morrison secretly appointed himself to five additional ministries while Australia's prime minister, in what his successor has labelled an "unprecedented trashing of the Westminster system". The prime minister, Anthony Albanese, said on Tuesday he was waiting on legal advice over any possible ramifications of the secret appointments and was "open to reforms and suggestions" so the situation did not reoccur. Morrison now faces calls to resign from parliament over the revelations, including from one of his former ministers. Karen Andrews, a former minister for home affairs, which is one of the departments to which Morrison appointed himself, said: "This is totally unacceptable, for a prime minister to behave in this manner undermines everything that a federal government constitutionally should stand for." Comment: Where were these MPs with their supposed values and principles when certain regions of Australia were enforcing one of the most brutal lockdowns seen across the...
  45. Train services have been disrupted and several buildings were evacuated after a fire broke out near London Bridge. More than 70 firefighters tackled the blaze in a railway arch on Union Street, Southwark. London Fire Brigade said a garage in the arch which contained vehicles had been destroyed along with another unit. Four rail lines and the Jubilee line were closed for safety reasons. Network Rail said they have all reopened but warned train delays would continue.
  46. The Chinese Defence Ministry announced today its participation in the Vostok 2022 strategic command and staff exercise in Russia, which is slated for August 30-September 5. The low-key statement in Beijing said China will send some troops and the participation is within the framework of the two countries' annual cooperation plan. The statement mentioned that "India, Belarus, Tajikistan, Mongolia and other countries will also participate." It said the Chinese participation "aims to deepen pragmatic and friendly cooperation with the militaries of the participating countries, enhance the level of strategic coordination among all participating parties, and enhance the ability to deal with various security threats." In what can be construed as an oblique reference to the conflict in Ukraine and the big power tensions in general, Beijing stated that the exercise is "unrelated to the current international and regional situation." Vostok is one of the capstone events of the Russian Armed...
  47. Shrugging off western obstacles, Eurasia's ambitious connectivity projects helmed by China and Russia are now progressing deep into Asia's Heartland. SAMARKAND - Interconnecting Inner Eurasia is an exercise in Taoist equilibrium: adding piece by piece, patiently, to a gigantic jigsaw puzzle. It takes time, skill, vision, and of course major breakthroughs. A key piece was added to the puzzle recently in Uzbekistan, bolstering the links between the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and the International North South Transportation Corridor (INSTC). The Mirzoyoyev government in Tashkent is deeply engaged in turbo-driving yet another Central Asian transportation corridor: a China-Kyrgyzstan-Uzbekistan-Afghanistan railway. That was at the center of a meeting between the chairman of the board of Temir Yullari - the Uzbek national railways - and his counterparts in Kyrgyzstan and Afghanistan, as well as managers of the Chinese Wakhan Corridor logistics company. In terms of the complex...
  48. Wyoming Rep. Liz Cheney was blasted by Republicans and conservatives after she compared herself to Abraham Lincoln in her concession speech following Tuesday's primary loss. "Abraham Lincoln was defeated in elections for the Senate and the House before he won the most important election of all," Cheney said of the 16th president after she was soundly beaten by Trump-backed challenger Harriet Hageman. "Lincoln ultimately prevailed," Cheney went on. "He saved our union and he defined our obligation as Americans for all of history. Speaking at Gettysburg of the great task remaining before us, Lincoln said, 'That we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain. That this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom and a government of the people, by the people and for the people shall not perish from this Earth.'
  49. Michael Kofman says Europe may already have given Kiev most of the weapons it's willing to provide Ukraine's European backers may be about to put the country on an "ammunition diet", an American military analyst has claimed in an interview with Germany's Der Spiegel. Michael Kofman said these nations may already have reached their limit in terms of weapons supplies to Kiev. In an article published on Tuesday, Kofman was quoted as saying it is not in the Ukrainian military's best interests to bide its time, as the weather will soon begin to worsen, making any counteroffensive more difficult to pull off. On top of that, according to the US expert, Russian troops could use a hiatus to regroup and "solve some of their personnel problems."
  50. Move prompted by the mounting economic war with Russia marks the first departure from a two-decade policy to abandon nuclear energy Germany plans to postpone the closure of the country's last three nuclear power plants as it braces for a possible shortage of energy this winter after Russia throttled gas supplies to the country, said German government officials. While temporary, the move would mark the first departure from a policy initiated in the early 2000s to phase out nuclear energy in Germany and which had over time become enshrined in political consensus. The decision has yet to be formally adopted by German Chancellor Olaf Scholz's cabinet and would likely require a vote in Parliament. Some details are still under discussion, three senior government officials said. A cabinet decision would also need to wait on the outcome of an assessment of Germany's energy needs that will be concluded in the coming weeks but which the officials said was a foregone conclusion.