State Secrecy and Public Hearings Part One 310

At the Assange extradition hearings in Woolwich Crown Court and the Old Bailey, the public gallery was limited to five and sometimes two. The excuse was Covid. But online access was denied to Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International and numerous other groups and individuals, including journalists. The mainstream media was anyway complicit in leaving the entire hearing virtually unreported – less than one percent of the coverage given to Johnny Depp vs Amber Heard.

The International Court of Justice met at the Hague to consider Israeli genocide, and the entire proceedings were open to anybody in the world with a decent video connection, through an open link and no password. Like the crucial Assange appeal hearings coming in the High Court on 21 and 21 February, the ICJ is a public court. Yet the judges of the London High Court have passed a series of Kafkaesque regulations to limit who can see the trial, under the pretext of open access.

Here is the Stalinist nonsense in its entirety. I promise your mind is going to boggle:

Remember, as that document says, this is a “public hearing”. You have to apply for permission to watch it and state WHY you want to watch it. Presumably “It is a public hearing. By law it has to be public” is not a sufficient reason. There is no guarantee at all that you will be given permission.

You have to be in England or Wales to watch. Applications from Scotland and Northern Ireland will “not normally be granted”. Despite the fact it is the UK government which is extraditing Julian under a UK–USA extradition treaty, not an England and Wales–USA extradition treaty.

Julian is an Australian citizen. But you are not “normally” permitted to watch in Australia. It is the United States government which is seeking to extradite Julian. But citizens of the United States will not “normally” be permitted to view online.

Scots and Irish will not be permitted to view, presumably because their loyalty to the security state is known to be dubious! I have no idea what is the position for the Channel Islands or Isle of Man.

Not only does the Big Brother state want to know your identity and where you are, nobody else is allowed to watch the hearing with you. Why? What harm is it if your mum looks at it? It is a public f***ing hearing.

Who are they scared is going to watch? Why does that scare them? What do they think these naughty people watching are going to do? Are they worried Putin and Xi will be secretly watching and will do some terrible internet magic that collapses the western world? Just what is this crazy restriction about?

Why is nobody outside the state and billionaire media allowed to give live information about what is happening in the Court? Why is it OK if CNN does give live information, but not OK if a concerned citizen does it?

Why does everybody have to be threatened with two years’ imprisonment if they break these crazy rules?

I urge everybody reading this post to contact the court as specified at [email protected], and apply to watch online, following the rules in para 4 of the court order above. If you are outside the UK, please include in your reasons that the United States is making explicitly in this case a claim of universal jurisdiction for its Espionage Act over the whole world, so everybody is affected including you.

Please then put out on social media that you have applied, and encourage others to apply. Please post updates when you hear back from the court including stating regularly if they don’t reply. Post any answer you get. And go back to them and argue.

Officially this is a “public hearing”. Officially these judges are committed to “open justice”. What a farce. What are they hiding?



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310 thoughts on “State Secrecy and Public Hearings Part One

1 2 3
  • auximenes

    Note that one is only permitted to write about the case in real time if one is a journalist.
    There is no definition of what a journalist is.
    Be careful Craig. Any reportage after day 1, as in the style of your ICJ coverage, could land you in serious trouble.

    • AG

      recommended to those who really know this stuff. Very insider lingo. I understood only parts of it.

      At about 60´ they mention Assange without anything concrete.
      But regarding Seth Rich they agree that as of now they do not know anything for sure.

      Possibly the DNC hack was a complete insider Clinton job and the Rich incident just the cover-up and that the leaks to Wikileaks come from someone inside that.
      May be not. But they agree that at some point in the (distant) future this entire mystery will be solved…

      p.s. poitically they are oddities. These younger US experts sometimes know very little about the history of political economy which surprises me.
      It was very different 20, 30 years ago. But that just as a side note.

  • AG

    I guess the usual?

    “Christopher Steele: Orbis welcomes High Court victory over Trump”
    “A British consultancy that compiled a salacious dossier linking Donald Trump to Russia has welcomed a UK High Court decision to throw out a lawsuit by the former US president.

    “Orbis Business Intelligence – run by ex-MI6 officer Christopher Steele – said it was “delighted” by the ruling.
    Mr Trump had been seeking to use data protection laws to sue the company.
    Mr Steele’s dossier contained unsubstantiated claims of bribery and sex parties.
    Funded by Hillary Clinton’s Democrats and other political opponents of Mr Trump, the dossier was leaked to the media just before Mr Trump, a Republican, was sworn in as president.”

    • Nota Tory Fanboy

      Why sue on the grounds of data protection (yeah, like Trump really cares about such – or any laws – applying to him for the benefit of citizens…) if it’s made up?

      • AG

        I meant in regard of the current interview vs. the court decision re: extradition. I have the feeling former is eclipsing awareness for latter. And it cannot be in our interest that public focus is on those 2 talking heads. And besides NATO won´t change its policy for the sake of this interview and neither will Russia.

        • Lapsed Agnostic

          Thanks for your reply AG. Whether or not Assange gets extradited to the US is important to him and his friends & family, but, in my view, it’s not particularly important to matters regarding the freedom to publish information, because the message has already been sent, and the message is as follows: If you upset the US security establishment, all methods of dealing with you are on the table – including murder. That will be enough to put most people in possession of leaked information off publishing.

          I’d hardly describe the leader of the country with the biggest nuclear arsenal in the world as a ‘talking head’. Putin’s interview with Tucker will be widely viewed in the US and, depending on how appealing his arguments are, could affect the outcome of the coming presidential election, which will very likely affect NATO policy, and perhaps the existence of NATO itself.

      • will moon

        But if Putin or the nukes were important,the BBC or Sky or a reputable establishment journalist (surely a empty set lol) would have already sounded out Putin’s views and attempted to inform the British public?

        If I based my opinion on British and American behaviour, I would infer the nukes are no problem – after all these countries are supplying radioactive ammunition to Ukraine and fighting a very profitable war in their attempts to destabilise Russia.

        The American military has gamed limited nuclear war in Europe for over half a century – some scenarios game America’s first use of atomics in Europe and involve vast amounts of destruction of humans and material.

        Ahh the munificent benefits of NATO membership – and the shareholders are happy!

        • Lapsed Agnostic

          Thanks for your reply, Will. As far as I’m aware, Putin hasn’t granted an interview with any British journalists since the invasion began. Depleted uranium is not weapons-grade plutonium. Even though it’s highly classified, US nuclear war-gaming is simple: In a nutshell, if Russia (or anyone else) launches nukes at the US, they’ll be getting nukes back from the US in exchange. If Russia (or anyone else) launches nukes at any other country (including NATO members), they won’t. Any other policy would be insanity.

          • will moon

            No America has several first use scenarios in Europe. Back in the eighties when “World in Action” or whoever revealed this fact, they even managed to get an American General to say that a limited nuclear war could be fought in Europe and it would benefit America in the documentary. Many people were very angry about this nuclear nightmare nonchalance and massive anti-nuclear weapons marches took place in response to this display of callous and inhuman American psychopathy,

            Depleted Uranium is radioactive and the effect it has on human health is believed by many to be far more damaging than the profiteers who run the MIC claim. Like Agent Orange, it is suspected of long term damage to DNA, causing hideous deformities in the population who are exposed to these deadly contaminants

            The Americans are insane – the baddest johnny in the apple cart. – you seem to think they are not. Look at Iraq, Libya, Korea, Vietnam – destroying civilian infrastructure and murdering millions of civilians, so the shareholders in arms companies can make money – surely the definition on insanity?

          • AG

            …when I wrote “more important than” the same argument did cross my mind.

            However, eventually I do not believe the personnel in the WH will much influence the use or risks of WMDs.
            Trump was as aggressive towards RU as any other POTUS.
            I don´t think NATO would be affected.
            And even in the very very unlikely case it would, the geopolitical truisms regarding WMDs would be unchanged.
            The strategies, rules of engagement, scenarios, countervalue, counterstrike etc. are the same.
            This behemoth of an MIC is 75 years old. It forms the core of the US. The last thing that will be dismantled is the US nuclear triad and its suppliers.
            I believe what the car industry is to Germany (1/7th+ of all jobs) MIC with nukes at its core is to the US.
            The only NATO change I would expect is an expansion into the Pacific officially.
            And even if NATO were dissolved, the nukes and everything connected to that would still be in place.
            In fact a European anti-RU alliance with its own triad (which is way too expensive IMHO) would even raise the risks.
            So, no, Tump is totally secondary to any of this.

            And yes, I do believe the symbolic value and significance of a freed Julian Assange would be a symbol not to underestimate. Many people who have thrown in the towel would raise their heads. It would be historic and thus downplayed by the West just like the ICJ decision.

            Justice and success fighting authoritarianism very seldomly comes with fanfares. It´s a tough fight with difficult small victories. Assange would be one such bigger one. But you have to look at a decade long chain of events which Assange makes up one part. But to create such a chain you need keep on doing it.

            May be I was incorrect in comparing the two cases at all. They are just too distant.
            I only did so due to the scheduling of the interview and Assange´s hearing just 2 weeks apart.

          • Lapsed Agnostic

            Thanks for your reply Will. A limited nuclear war could potentially occur in Europe, but US nukes will almost certainly not be involved. Uranium-238 is not that radioactive. Marie Curie spent decades working closely with tons of natural uranium (which is more radioactive than depleted uranium) with zero protection, as well as the much more radioactive radium & polonium, which she discovered. She died of cancer in her mid-60’s, but that was thought to have been caused by her chronic exposure to X-rays during World War I. She also gave birth to healthy children (one of whom lived to the age of 102), both very probably sired by her husband, Pierre, who also worked closely with uranium. Psychopathy is not insanity. The Americans lost fewer than 100,000 soldiers in Korea, Vietnam & Iraq combined; a full-exchange nuclear war between the US & Russia would lead to the deaths of over 300 million Americans, mostly by starvation, suicide & murder.

          • Lapsed Agnostic

            Thanks for your reply AG. Let’s see – at a rally in South Carolina yesterday, Trump stated that he would ‘encourage’ Russia to attack NATO member states that he deems haven’t paid enough subscription money. Yes, I’m sure that NATO under a Trump presidency and a Republican-dominated Congress is going to be pretty much the same as it is now (this is sarcasm). Military spending is 3.5% of US GDP and falling, compared to around 20% for healthcare. The German car industry isn’t responsible for more than a seventh of all German jobs – it probably accounts for fewer than a million of them. Much as I yearn for him to breathe free, a liberated Assange will hardly be a Mandela-like figure.

          • will moon

            America and NATO have had plans to fight a limited atomic war in Europe during the Cold War – this has been public knowledge for a long time. Now Russia has been conjured as a enemy by the likes of Chatham House and NED, I would assume those plans are back on the table.
            America killed maybe 8,000,000 civilians and destroyed Iraq, Korea, Vietnam and Libya for the loss of 100,000 or whatever military personnel that you mention. Mr Murray has posted a UN report concerning America using germ warfare in Korea. Against such a backdrop, you’re worried about Putin? Your concern seems misplaced.

            I think it a subjective call whether Assange or Putin is more important.

            Western governments would like one to think of Putin as more attention-worthy and using their usual methods, promoting fear over hope, war over peace, domination over co-existence, they flatter to deceive – dissembling. We see this clearly with Assange.

            If Putin is so bad, how come Assange is still in detention? Assange’s treatment shows how thin and desperate the “Putin propaganda” is

          • AG

            60% of US manufacture industry depends on contracts with the defense industry.
            To that add e.g. close cooperation of the entire R&D sector at universities paid for by massive university budgets.
            You will most likely not find funding for meaningful R&D if you exclude the military.
            If teachers oppose they will get fired.
            If the true current DoD budget is around 2.2 trillion and 60% world wide defense contracts are to the benefit of US companies naturally that is only one part of the complex.
            Defense companies have major leverage over parliamentary votes due to voter base, production plants & jobs, campaign funding.
            What else do Americans manufacture besides weapons?
            What else do they produce that can be sold?
            Of course its not only that. But its significance is extraordinary.

            William Hartung:
            “The department’s budget is now hundreds of billions of dollars more than at the height of the Vietnam War and over twice what it was when President Eisenhower warned of the “unwarranted influence” wielded by what he called “the military-industrial complex.”
            To offer just a few comparisons: annual spending on the costly, dysfunctional F-35 combat aircraft alone is greater than the entire budget of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In 2020, Lockheed Martin’s contracts with the Pentagon were worth more than the budgets of the State Department and the Agency for International Development combined, and its arms-related revenues continue to rival the government’s entire investment in diplomacy. One $13 billion aircraft carrier costs more than the annual budget of the Environmental Protection Agency. Overall, more than half of the discretionary budget Congress approves every year — basically everything the federal government spends other than on mandatory programs like Medicare and Social Security — goes to the Pentagon.”

            p.s. Frankly, I don´t care what Trump claims on some rally.

          • Lapsed Agnostic

            Thanks for your reply Will. Supposed plans for a limited nuclear war are not public knowledge, because the SIOP (or whatever it’s called now) is highly classified, and anyone caught leaking it will have far less chance than Assange of ever getting out.

            Unlike many people, I’m fully aware that the actions of the US DoD (in conjunction with the authorities in the P.R. China, big pharma, and the Bill “Well he’s dead so, uh, you have to be careful” & Melinda Gates Foundation) have almost certainly already led to the deaths of over 20 million people in the last five years alone. However, a full-scale nuclear war between NATO would lead to the deaths of over 500 million – there’s nothing misplaced or subjective about that. Assange is still in detention because the US authorities want to punish him for what he did.

          • Lapsed Agnostic

            Thanks for your reply AG.

            Re: ‘60% of US manufacture [sic] industry depends on contracts with the defense industry.’

            Could I have a source for that please?

            Re: ‘You will most likely not find funding for meaningful R&D if you exclude the military.’

            You certainly could 10 years ago when I was working in one or two university depts stateside. I suspect not much has changed.

            ‘What else do Americans manufacture besides weapons? What else do they produce that can be sold?’

            Let’s see: cars, trucks, motorbikes, airliners, refined petroleum products, fine chemicals, pharmaceuticals, plastics, paints, bricks, timber products, cement, steel, non-ferrous alloys, washing machines, refrigerators, air-conditioning systems, hot tubs, electronics (most of the low-end chips are made in the US), books, processed food….etc, etc.

            Were those supposed to be rhetorical questions?

            The US defense industry has gone through huge consolidation over the last 30 years. However, the largest defense company by market capitalisation, Lockheed Martin, is still only worth around $100 billion. For comparison, NVIDIA (which makes graphics cards FFS) is worth over two trillion.

            I would imagine that many people in Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Finland, and several other countries, care about what Trump said at that rally.

  • will moon

    So organisations which reported the death of a score or so of Israeli soldiers as the most costly or deadly day or whatever, of the conflict are to be favoured over anyone else? Even citizens of England, where this event is being held, are not allowed to report about this trial immediately but “recognised” news organisations are?

    Rupert Murdoch made money directly from the death of Millie Dowler and claiming football fans urinated on victims during a fatal disaster yet his propaganda organs are allowed to report immediately on these proceedings? Murdoch, the biggest booster of Savile, along with the BBC yet these vile media institutions are given special privileges to report “the truth” from these proceedings?

    After Mr Murray wrote his first article from The Hague, “Your man in The Hague (in a good way)”, I came across Kevork Almassian, the host of “Syriania Analysis”, using the article to explain the court proceedings to his audience. His appreciation regarding the journalistic content of Mr Murray’s was high – saying several times just how high his opinion of the article was. He even said that the article was better than the live coverage he watched! Surely the highest praise any journalist could receive for the act of reporting an event? At that moment, memories of Mr Murray’s journalistic status being questioned previously flooded into my mind.

    I put myself forward as the notional “person on the Clapham Omnibus”. In this capacity I would like it known I consider Mr Craig Murray a journalist and would add that I would look askance at any person, agency or entity who contradicted this judgement. If this contrarian behaviour was persistent, it would lead me to label such individuals, agencies or entities as bad actors who require special handling and I would feel the need to inform the adults in my community about these bad actors. Fortunately in the city I live in, many people know Murdoch, the BBC etc are liars so this self-appointed task is less arduous than it might be

    • Nota Tory Fanboy

      Given the lack of apology – or any statement combined with effort – from those entities which maligned Murray’s journalist status and put him in prison on trumped up charges using seriously flawed logic, in seeking to redress that outrage, you can be fairly sure that those entities remain “bad actors”.

    • Lapsed Agnostic

      Plenty of newspapers made money out of the tragic death of Milly Dowler, Will, because people want to read about gruesome murders, particularly of children (a recent case in point being the horrific killing of Brianna Ghey, which was also carried out by children*). Murdoch, however, will have lost money on it, as News International gave the Dowler family millions in compo after some of its journalists were found to have illegally accessed the voicemail on her phone.

      * After this and the Lucy Letby case, I can’t help asking myself whether they’re putting something in the water in north-west Cheshire – aside from the usual endocrine-disrupting steroidal sex hormones from humans and livestock, obvs.

      • will moon

        Murdoch’s business model encompasses vermin like Glenn Mulcaire accessing Milly Dowler’s phone after her murder, making her parents think she might still be alive. That is a class operation – scum like Murdoch employing vermin like Mulcaire to crucify the family of a dead girl, all to sell a few papers – not all media outlets behaved in the same iniquitous fashion.

        Murdoch is the scum of the earth. We will have to disagree on the behaviour of Murdoch and his propaganda rags concerning the Millie Dowler case – making the parents think the daughter was alive was unforgivable. There are no mitigating factors, just scum deeply hurting innocent people for a few quid – for some reason it is legal to do this to grieving parents – but nothing will convince me it is right, sorry.

        • Lapsed Agnostic

          Thanks for your reply Will. I’m not saying that phone-hacking is acceptable, just that it ended up costing Davros money, rather than him making money out of it – and the same probably went for The Sun’s Hillsborough coverage, what with loss of sales in Scouse-land etc. It’s not legal in the UK to hack voicemail services – it was just ridiculously easy as people didn’t change their pass-codes. Glenn Mulcaire was sentenced to 6 months for it, and then a further 6 months suspended later on. It’s also not legal to download data that you’re aware has been obtained without consent, but that didn’t stop our host from doing it and risking a sentence of up to two years. Fortunately for him, the bizzies seem to have let it go.

          • will moon

            Simple question: A commercial entity makes the parents of a dead girl think that the girl is still alive in a diabolical scheme (phone hacking) “gone wrong” Is this acceptable as an act of commerce?

            If the answer is no, how seriously should such activity be taken, in your opinion?

          • Lapsed Agnostic

            Thanks for reply Will. As I have already stated, I don’t think phone-hacking is acceptable. It should be taken very seriously by the authorities, with prison sentences imposed if deemed appropriate – as was the case with Glenn Mulcaire and several others.

          • will moon

            I’m not talking about celebrities or “top people” who been phone hacked – whatever.

            I am talking about Milly Dowler’s parents mistakenly thinking their daughter might still be alive because of Rupert Murdoch’s business model. Because corpse-robbers hacked Milly’s phone, for commercial reasons, innocent people suffered grievously.

            What right does commerce have to cause such suffering?

            This oligarch has a long history of abusing victims. Murdoch is not a fit person to play a part in British national life. The behaviour of his media companies, historically, is enough to know this behaviour reflects who Murdoch is, his values and his goals – scum who feeds on the weak and powerless due to a weak regulatory regime – indeed we have this,

            “ 10 Feb 2022 Nadine Dorries has removed all legal barriers on Rupert Murdoch interfering in the editorial independence of the Times and the Sunday Times”
            The Guardian

            You recently said R Brand was guilty of at least one count of rape after reading a Times article accusing him of misconduct – is this still the case?

          • Lapsed Agnostic

            Thanks for your reply Will. As with several celebs, Milly Dowler’s phone was hacked. The Sun didn’t have a right to do this, which is why Glenn Mulcaire went to jail, and News International paid millions to her family to avoid a court case. Why shouldn’t someone who owns a newspaper (or website) – or who acts on their behalf – have full editorial control? For example, you’re allowed to write jokes about women gaining sexual gratification from watching African leaders being anally raped by bayonet on here, whereas my jokes (or rather Julie Burchill’s) about married French men being unfaithful get deleted. I may not like that, but that’s the way it is.

            What I said was that provided the text messages between Russell Brand and his accuser in LA are genuine, Brand is beyond reasonable doubt guilty of at least one rape. As far as I’m aware, despite protesting his innocence, he is yet to sue Times Newspapers.

        • AG

          WILL MOON

          off topic but quick, re: Clintons – Yves Smith at naked capitalism wrote an excellent short response comment containing this piece of info:

          “Hillary Clinton received a $100,000 bribe in IIRC 1978, in the form of impossible commodity trading profit. Aside from the fact that her success and her stopping when she hit $100,000 (as opposed to continuing trading after such a great run) were obviously not possible, particularly for a complete newbie trader, three Congresscritters got hold of her trading records and presented them to three professional traders, one of whom I know personally. He said the results were rigged, she always traded at the best price of the day, so the trades were allocated to her.

          As Secretary of State, the Clinton Foundation continued to accept donations from foreign donors despite Obama telling her that that was not on, once she became Secretary of State. Of course Obama being Obama, he didn’t come down on her for ignoring him.”

    • Tom Welsh

      Until Mr Assange is liberated, I would go so far as to describe Mr Murray as “the journalist”. (With honourable mention and apologies to Mr Helmer, Mr Hedges, Mr Kunstler, and Mr Greer).

    • Pigeon English

      Journalist what TF is that nowadays?
      To my perception, as a young man 40 years ago was someone with great ” writing skills” having the opportunity/privilege/ merit to write in the print media and progress to broadcast.
      Anyone was a journalist. From people rapporting traffic, weather , news and music, food, theatre etc. so called Critics ( opinion)
      With social media platforms many more people have the opportunity to provide better ” journalism” ,” rapporting” and opinion.
      Personally I would give many of the posters on this blog ” journalist” status either as reliable rapporteurs or interesting opinions makers/ critics.

  • Crispa

    State secrecy and not keeping the public informed can take many forms. I have just read on the BBC website Sarah Rainsford’s traducing of Tucker Carlson’s Putin interview. The report is as risibly bad as one would expect from the BBC. And she fails to mention the one item which is of direct interest to a UK audience, namely Putin’s account of the by now well known part played by Boris Johnson in the sabotaging of the Istanbul peace talks.

      • Ebenezer Scroggie

        Tom, thankyou so much for those two links. Not speaking Russian, I’ve read the entirety of the English transcript

        I had already read the very lengthy BBC dismantlement and destruction piece of the independent interview.

        The BBC obliteration has the hallmarks and pawprints of an Atlantic Council / Integrity Initiative / Chatham House propaganda piece. I suspect that some of it had already been draughted before the interview occurred.

        Both Putin and his interviewer spoke very eloquently and intelligently. Putin’s historical account of the history of what led up to the present day can endlessly be questioned, but it seems to me to make sense. I’ve never seen a better or less contradictable statement of the past and present state of affairs on the matter than he expressed.

        Thank you, Tom, for presenting the actuality of that interview to the house here.

        • Tom Welsh

          My pleasure, Ebenezer. I do recommend listening to the video interview. The translation is brilliant: you can hear Mr Putin’s actual words in the background, but the English translation follows just a few moments after. You can relate Mr Putin’s words to his facial expressions and (very eloquent) gestures. I got up once (briefly) but otherwise sat entranced for 2 hours 165 minutes.

      • David Warriston

        Adam Zivo, the author of the linked article, clearly misunderstands the meaning of the term ‘debunked.’ He admits that there was a draft agreement in Istanbul, something he compares to laying the foundations of a house. He admits that Boris Johnson was unwilling to support any such peace deal and advised the Ukrainian regime to continue fighting. So there is no disagreement there whatsoever.

        Zivo, described as a ‘serial social entrepreneur’ (whatever that is) claims ‘the house’ of peace could never have been built on the Istanbul foundations. That is a matter of opinion and falls well short of ‘debunking.’ His sources seem limited to Yaroslav Trofimov (a Ukrainian/Canadian journalist who did not attend the talks) and Zivo’s own claim of Naftali Bennett being quoted out of context. Various other Russian, Ukrainian and Turkish sources, persons who attended the talks, are simply ignored.

        Also ignored are the negotiations which preceded Johnson’s visit to Kiev, ones which took place in Belarus on 28th February 2022. One of the Ukrainian negotiators, Denys Kireyev, was reported killed a week later in circumstances that remain disputed.

        • Tom Welsh

          Ah! I think I see the difficulty. It’s a question of English language comprehension.

          “Contradicted” is a long way from “debunked”. (The latter, of course, is an extremely informal and vague word that has little real meaning).

          Just as “refuted” does not mean “denied”, but “proven to be wrong”. No doubt people get it mixed up with “rebutted”. The dictionary should be their friend, as the widespread attitude of “I know what I mean, so you should too” makes for serious misunderstandings and confusion.

          • Bayard

            That’s not what “ad hominem” means. To say that the source is incorrect is not an “ad hominem attack”.

            “Perhaps somebody would like to comment on Vlad’s claims that Ukraine is not a proper nation (despite him signing several treaties with it) and that Poland started WW2.”

            Yes, I would. I’ve read a transcript of the interview and he said no such things.

            It’s funny how some people insist on showing us the propaganda the MSM put out, rather like a cat insisting on showing you its arsehole. We know it’s there, but we don’t want to see it, thank you very much.

          • David Warriston

            Zivo was not attacked by me ad hominem. He merely failed to deliver on his claim that he was debunking the myth of a peace deal in Istanbul. His article was laced with comments like ‘pro-Putin’ or ‘pro Kremlin’ which is a form of ad hominem argument itself.

            PM’s latest offering, authored by Artiukh and Fedirko, uses the word ‘left’ or ‘leftist’ as a general insult and is based on a simple premise: no statement by Russia can be taken at face value, whilst all ‘offers’ from NATO countries are copper-bottomed guarantees. I don’t think we have to work out who is paying for this sort of stuff, all based on conjecture from self-styled Kremlinologists. Chatham House beckons for them.

          • will moon

            “Chatham House beckons…”

            Never in the annals of British wonkery, have so many owed so much etc etc

          • AG

            haven´t had time to go through all of it yet (when I mention the interview, friends of mine seem more scared of the length than the man – haha)

            On a guess I however would doubt he really would mean “started WWII”…?
            but if Poland were an issue of that sort there is this thing with Poland attacking the Russians and the Russians attacking back und then agreeing on a “stalemate”(also: word of the year 2024). And the apparent lack by the Poles to engage in an anti-German coalition. They appeared to not believing the Germans to actually attack until the very last moment.
            At least according to this.
            If I again post this by Carley, sry, but I found it infomative and fit this current interview.

            Its long too but the guy in fact has been a historian all his lif, studying the Russian archives as well.
            “Michael Jabara Carley. “Fiasco: The Anglo-Franco-Soviet Alliance That Never Was and the Unpublished British White Paper, 1939–1940.” International History Review 2021”

            WILL MOON

            my MOTHER of all people asked my about the Ozarks just recently!
            She doesn´t speak English. So no idea why. But I used your article! it was welcome!

          • AG


            We don´t agree on things and I might be angry sometimes, but thanks for making the effort and in general providing links, regarding the fact that the majority here is mostly opposing, I would guess, your view.)

          • Tom Welsh

            “Ask yourself how likely it is that BoJo could convince an unwilling nation to fight on”.

            Luckily for Mr Johnson, he did not have to convince a nation – just one man, Mr Zelezny. That’s one of the great conveniences of dictatorship. Once convinced, Mr Zelzny could easily disappear anyone who disagreed. How he was convinced is an open question, but I suspect large amounts of folding money, possibly combined with threats of unpleasant physical suffering.

          • Tom Welsh

            “Never in the annals of British wonkery, have so many owed so much etc etc”

            “Owed” or “owned”? And “wonkery” or “wokery”?

          • will moon

            “ “Owed” or “owned”? And “wonkery” or “wokery”?”

            “annals” or “anals” ?

            Adding or dropping an “n” has consequences, often unforeseen, it seems

            Regardless, “wonkery” and “wokery” don’t ding my dong (dot dig my dog)

          • Lapsed Agnostic

            Re: ‘Zivo was not attacked by me ad hominem.’

            Exhibit A: ‘Zivo, described as a ‘serial social entrepreneur’ (whatever that is)’

            Looks like an ad hom from where I’m sitting, David. In fairness, Pears was incorrect to state that ad hominem attacks were your only response.

          • Bayard

            “Exhibit A: ‘Zivo, described as a ‘serial social entrepreneur’ (whatever that is)’”

            Well, given that an internet search for “serial social entrepreneur” brings up, as the top three hits, three people who are happy to describe themselves as one, your Exhibit A seems pretty worthless, nor can you plausibly maintain that DW’s lack of understanding of the term makes it “ad hominem”. Perhaps you need new glasses or to change your sitting position.

          • Lapsed Agnostic

            Thanks for your reply Bayard. I can assure you that I don’t need new glasses*. As I would have thought was obvious, I wasn’t making any comment on the validity or otherwise of being a ‘serial social entrepreneur’ as a means of gainful employment, nor of Mr Warriston’s self-claimed ignorance of the term – I don’t know what one is either and I can’t be arsed to find out. Mr Zivo’s profession is, however, irrelevant to his arguments about why peace talks to end the War/SMO in Ukraine broke down, and I would posit that it was only included in Mr Warriston’s comment in order to denigrate his opinions (otherwise why include it?), i.e. it was an ad hominem attack.

            * Which is just as well, as they set me back over £600. Can’t complain though, as they’ve survived more or less intact after I got punched in the head, for no real reason, on more than one occasion by one or two crazy crackheads and run-of-the-mill ****-ups. I’m not really into designer labels, but Giorgio Armani eyewear definitely comes with a big recommendation from me (I’m not being paid to write this).

          • Bayard

            “I would posit that it was only included in Mr Warriston’s comment in order to denigrate his opinions ”

            Neither AW’s lack of understanding of the term or your lack of understanding of why he used it makes it an “ad hominem attack”. Given that it appears to be a term of approval, or, otherwise, why should three people be happy to describe themselves as such and given that there is no evidence that Mr Zivo described himself as one (note, AW says “is described as”, not “refers to himself as”, how can a reference to this term be an “ad hominem) attack on Mr Zivo.?

            However, your assumption that AW’s reference to Mr Zivo as a “social entrepreneur” is a “ad hominem attack”, is itself an “ad hominem attack” ” in order to denigrate his (AW’s) opinions .”

          • Lapsed Agnostic

            Thanks for your reply Bayard. More than three people in this world are perfectly happy to describe themselves as prostitutes but, in any event, it doesn’t matter whether ‘serial social entrepreneurs’ are highly regarded or not, the implication is that, as his stated profession probably doesn’t involve much in the way of international politics, Zivo’s opinions on the peace talks can be disregarded.

            My response was not an ad hominem attack since I was directly addressing his statements but, even if it were, it wouldn’t advance your argument, as that would just be an example of the tu quoque fallacy.

            Enjoy your evening.

            P.S. David Warriston’s initials are not AW.

      • Crispa

        If Putin was inventing a calumny against a whiter-than-white Johnson, surely BBC would relish it, indeed have a duty to expose it. So why ignore it?

      • AG

        a bit late as a contribution to the topic of peace talks UKR 2022

        (I also post the below links into the forum so they won´t get lost):

        A new 2-part German summary of the peace talks in spring 2022, based on the various public statements available and on what we know by now:

        “The unwanted chance for peace in Istanbul in spring 2022 – Part 1”

        “The unwanted chance for peace in Istanbul in spring 2022 – Part 2”

        p.s. It should be fair to ask: Why would Kiev bother passing a decree which outlaws peace talks with Moscow had those not been conducted in earnest by Moscow?

        Why preempt peace if your foe doesn´t make the impression he means it in the first place?

        Why would Moscow contact Kiev by the 25th of February and suggest peace talks were they intent to “destroy” “occupy” or similiar Ukraine?

        The UKR president´s office posted the info on its very own site on Febr. 25th 2022.

        This was publicly confirmed by Zelensky Febr. 27th.
        The same day WH opposed any idea of peace.

        You won´t get it much clearer than that in the area of diplomatic history.

        Again as a reminder: When the US went to war against Iraq, against Afghanistan, the attacked governments offered peace talks. The US, intent to overthrow those governments, in contrast to RU now, never answered those offers for a peaceful solution.

        They went to war with a clear objective. Regardless of what their opponents would suggest.

        The same true for Serbia and Libya.

        I do believe these are two completely opposing patterns.

        • AG

          …and for some reason also today, Berliner Zeitung is reporting via REUTERS, and thus confirming past rumours, that the Russians tried to get the US to the table for peace talks.

          Whatever its worth for, the item:

          “New media report: USA prevented ceasefire in Ukraine
          Through intermediaries in the Arab world, Moscow is said to have offered the West a ceasefire in Ukraine. How did Washington react?”

    • Greg Park

      Boris’s loudest critics have been strangely silent on him keeping the Ukraine war going at the cost of hundreds of thousands of lives. Just as they were about his antisemitic novels and are about Sunak helping to genocide kids in Gaza.

      It’s an extremely common condition in UK public life known as liberalitis.

      • Tom Welsh

        It’s funny how some of those who make the most noise about human life being sacred seem to care nothing at all about some human lives.

        • Stevie Boy

          One needs to contact their local regime representative to find out the right sorts of people:
          The right sort of journalists;
          The right sort of scientists;
          The right sort of jews;
          The right sort of blacks;
          Etc, etc.
          Remember ‘all lives matter’ is a racist term, just like ‘justice for Palestine’ is antisemitic.
          This equality, inclusion and diversity thing really has me confused !

      • Nota Tory Fanboy

        One could say the same about his loudest and most extreme supporters (e.g. Yaxley-Lennon) being supportive of Israeli genocide and pro-Putin.

        It is possible to hold two differing opinions about two differing situations in one’s head at the same time – indeed shortly after Putin’s invasion, Mr. Murray wrote a very good article on exactly that premise. Who invaded which country in the case of Russia-Ukraine? Putin invaded Russia Ukraine [see below] and so is thus as much an aggressive party as the West but if we follow your logic that Johnson critics should also criticise him for profiteering from continuing that war, you won’t get a complaint from me. It should be acknowledged that, IIRC (though surprise, surprise it wasn’t heavily reported), a former Polish general declared that Johnson was compromising Zelensky’s location when he went to visit, and that it’s pretty clear Johnson has long been acting as a Russian State stooge (see Perugia, Chernukhin, Brexit etc.). Johnson is also an inveterate narcissist so it’s more complicated than only saying he was either pro-UK (clearly he’s pro BAE Systems and Elbit!) or pro-Russia. The least complicated you could put it is probably that he was a “bad actor”.

        In the case of Israel-Palestine, the invader is obviously Israel because it’s clear they knew in advance of Hamas’ “invasion”, they let it happen as an excuse to eviscerate Gazans from the map and are still continuing their (re-)invasion of Gaza. This is further complicated by the fact that Netanyahu was helping fund Hamas and Palestinians are the party under occupation by Israel so can it even really be argued that Hamas ran an invasion? It’s interesting to think that if one were to try to draw parallels with Russia-Ukraine, there hasn’t been an invasion of Russia by Ukraine in this war in response to Russia’s initial invasion, whereas Israel has (re-)invaded Gaza after Hamas’ initial “invasion”.

        • Greg Park

          Well yes, there were equivalent occasions when Trump was hailed as presidential by the liberal establishment in the USA: when he bombed Syria, enacted a coup in Bolivia and attempted the same in Venezuela.

          The condition is not only observable in the UK.

        • Nota Tory Fanboy

          I made an error in that text – it should of course read “Putin invaded Ukraine” [ Mod: amended – see above ]

          If by liberal you mean neo-liberal and by establishment you mean the arms dealers, then sure I can imagine they might have described Trump as “presidential” but outside of that very specific clique, I don’t think anyone sane would seriously describe Trump as “presidential”.
          I do wonder how other pro-Palestinians here feel about another Trump presidency, seeing as he accepted to recognise Jerusalem as capital of Israel and move the US Embassy there?

          • Greg Park

            No, I don’t mean arms dealers and neoliberals. If I’d meant neoliberals I would just have said the entire political and media class. No, I was referring specifically to self-described liberal politicians and media, representatives and supporters of the corporate Democratic party. All the big liberal commentators in US corporate media and Democratic politicians suddenly saluted Trump as presidential when he bombed sovereign nations and when he attempted to subvert sovereign democracies.

            In the UK their equivalents (BBC, Guardian, new Labour) have given silent approval to Boris thwarting peace in Ukraine and to Sunak helping genocide Palestinian children.

            Liberalitis is invisible only to those who choose not to see it.

          • Nota Tory Fanboy

            Thank you, Admin!

            Greg Park, see I could appreciate your approach…if it fitted the definition of “liberal”. It actually fits the definition of “neoliberal” far better; although sounding incredibly similar, they are practically diametrically opposed.

          • Nota Tory Fanboy

            Oh and the only group that actually benefits from war is the arms dealers; arms dealer-supporting neoliberals just end up being loathed by liberals.

          • Greg Park

            I specified very clearly who I was referring to: the best-known, self-described liberal politicians, commentators and media organisations in Britain and the USA. All neoliberals. All warmongers and zionists.

            You’re either pretending you didn’t see who I was referring to or that they are the exact opposite of what they are.

          • Nota Tory Fanboy

            Greg Park have a look at the definitions of “liberal” and “neoliberal” and you’ll see that they’re practically diametrically opposed. Ergo it’s practically impossible for a neoliberal to be a liberal and since those people far better fit the definition of neoliberal, it’s unjustified to describe them as liberal.

            With the exception that the following two descriptors don’t look or sound similar as words, it would be the equivalent of calling a Conservative a Socialist.

          • Greg Park

            The definitions and descriptors are not opposed at all, they are virtually synonymous. That’s why liberal politicians and media were comfortable damning even the very milquetoast social-democratic proposals of Corbyn. A pro-human economic agenda they derided as “extreme” and “populist”.

            You have noticeably refused to identify the “real” liberals to whom you are referring. Why is that? Who are these socialist-minded, antiwar, anti-genocide liberals you believe everybody is aware of and whom people immediately think of whenever they hear the term liberal? Any names or organisations that will clarify who you are talking about?

    • Pigeon English

      Isn’t it interesting that BBC makes comments on 3rd grade journalist interview with 2nd rated despot.
      It is as you say risible opinion!

      • Republicofscotland

        Pigeon English.

        What I find interesting is that Carlson has been lambasted by the Western media for doing the interview, yet the Western media has no qualms about interviewing Netanyahu who is currently orchestrating the genocide of the Palestinian people.

        Meanwhile Eden Golan will be the Zionists entry at the Eurovision Song Contest this year, it would appear that the committing of genocide shouldn’t be a barrier to Israel (not a European nation anyway) for having an entry this year.

  • Neil Corney

    It seems quite obvious to me that the reason for their ridiculous restrictions is because they dont want people talking about it. This case can not bear scrutiny of any kind by anyone with a rational brain. This case makes a big joke of the British justice system and they know it but can do nothing but follow thier masters in the USA.

    • Fat Jon

      I would go further Neil, and say that the authorities really want to hold this 2-day hearing in secret, but they can’t do that because of the outcry from organisations who support openness and freedom. Therefore, they have consulted expensive lawyers in order to make it look as though they are on the side of openness, while restricting the coverage to such a degree that it will be as secret as they can make it.


    Not seen the Carlson – Putin interview.

    So I’ve only seen a few words from the main pourer of the disinfectant of truth in Moscow – the BBC’s Steve Rosenberg.

    As usual with all these reporters you only hear what their opinion is ( their interpretation) and you learn very little except about their own political opinions.

    Rosenberg made an extraordinary claim that holding up a card at a Press Conference for a question to Putin and being ignored was a form of censorship from Putin and the Russians.

    No Steve – what Carlson has done is to have the guts to ask for an ‘ interview ‘ with President Putin.

    As far as I know since the invasion of Ukraine no Western reporters have dared to ask for one as it would look bad on their CV and endanger their salaries.

    It’s no no.

    Now if Steve ( and his alleged fellow journalists) want to speak Truth to Power then he and they ought to nip smartly over to Tel Aviv and demand of Netanyahu the reasons for why he and his crazy mates are doing what they are doing.

    Ah – I forgot Israel’s on OUR side – it’s a democracy like us.

    I will also remind Steve that Julian Assange is still in prison and that we can’t as mere mortals watch the Putin Interview on our televisions because RT is banned across the free and democratic world.

    The Guardian ( a Democrat defending newspaper – that’s what they are Guarding – Guardianing ) sniffily described Carlson as ‘ tagging along ‘

    From a liberal? media outlet that ‘ tagged along ‘ with the jailing of Assange – tagged along with destroying their hard drives in front of British Spooks and tag along with Biden/Blinken/Kirby in Gaza and have tagged along with Obama and Hilary Clinton as well.

    Perhaps in the interest of ‘ balance ‘ ( what a liberal word and act) some Guardian journalists should tag along with Steve from the BBC and have a few stern questions for Netanyahu over a cup of tea?

    Of course Mr Netanyahu would insist that the taggers have to run their questions past his Office first and that they would reserve the right to censor any output.

    If any journalist in any country goes along with that and embedding then they are not journalists – they are yes men and women.

    Truth is they all know who to tag along with and who not to.

    Choose the wrong path and it’s the end of your career.

    p.s. Someone who should know better – Jeremy Bowen said that 12 employees of UNWRA had been ” sacked ” in a BBC report at Six O’Clock News

    First I’ve heard of it – or is he making it up?

    Guilty until proven innocent – The US and Israeli democratic way of doing things.

    • David Warriston

      The UNRWA workers were sacked after due process according to their boss. A little known form of jurisprudence he described as ‘reverse due process.’

      As Beria said back in the day: ‘Bring the man and I will find the crime!’

    • nevermind

      Steve Rosenberg holding up his BBC card and using Putin’s choice of who to take next for a question as a snub.
      Does he not realise that the UK and its hordes of compliant NATO sirens and our ex-MI6 bods are well prepared to kill a few more thousands of soldiers on both sides in this ugly theatre of war, and that little England really has no more trust and sway internationally?
      Well prepared to throw more billions into this greed conflict, whilst a million of its children are lucky to get one meal a day? Schools crumble and the justice system is drifting into a right wing crescendo of more and more restrictive measures for the public to adhere to, the Uk today, a small and vile political enclave of power hungry idiots.

      • harry law

        The British bulldog has been queuing up at the NHS to get a new pair of knashers since its teeth fell out years ago. Now it has to wait until ‘Uncle Sam’ bites its prey and then regurgitates into its vassals mouth. Pobs.

      • Tom Welsh

        “Steve Rosenberg holding up his BBC card and using Putin’s choice of who to take next for a question as a snub”.

        I imagine Russian officials (including Mr Putin) would think, “Oh, the BBC…” and automatically move on. Why waste valuable time and effort speaking to someone whose only purpose is the distort everything you say and publish reports that deliberately misrepresent your position?

        While Mr Carlson was obviously out of his depth and having difficulty digesting much of what Mr Putin told him, he definitely gives the impression of being fundamentally honest and possessing intellectual integrity.

        • Nota Tory Fanboy

          Carlson possessing intellectual integrity? Did you not see his text messages about Trump during the Dominion v. Fox News case?

    • Tom Welsh

      I think Mr Carlson made it fairly clear, somewhere or other, that he was granted the interview because the Kremlin believes him not to be hopelessly biased and blinkered. That is, they saw him as a very rare Western journalist who both has a very wide audience to whom he seems credible, and is somewhat open-minded.

      Many other Westerners have asked for interviews with Mr Putin, but they were always denied because it was obvious how they would turn out. Mr Carlson’s undertaking to broadcast the entire interview unedited (except for a few minor clarifications or emendations) was also presumably critical.

      I have seen a few remarks online about the potential unreliability of the translation. I myself had no difficulty whatsoever understanding Mr Putin’s meaning, with the aid of his facial expressions, gestures, and tone of voice.

  • harry law

    Pears Morgaine, Official: Johnson Forced Kyiv To Refuse Russian Peace Deal

    «Russia was ready to end the war and withdraw its troops in exchange for Ukrainian neutrality just a few months after the invasion began and was refused partly because of ex-British PM Boris Johnson, who pressured Kyiv into continuing the fight, David Arahamiya, the leader of Ukraine’s ruling party confirmed in a recent interview, published on Friday, November 24th.

    The lawmaker is not only leading the parliamentary faction of Zelensky’s Servant of the People party but was also appointed as the head of the Ukrainian delegation during the initial, tentative peace talks in March and April, hosted by Turkey.

    Russia’s ultimate goal was to press Ukraine into neutrality, Arahamiya explained, adding that all other requests (like the elusive ‘de-nazification’) were essentially empty cosmetics, and neutrality would have been enough for Russia to agree to withdraw beyond the February 24th frontlines.»

    • Pears Morgaine

      A lie oft repeated doesn’t become the truth. Russia had no intention of giving up any part of Ukraine which was one of the real sticking points. Putin still sticks to his aim of ‘de-Nazify’ and de-militarise Ukraine.

      Not sure anything that appears in the European Conservative could be described as ‘official’.

      • pretzelattack

        what do you mean give up any part of Ukraine. Crimea wanted to be part of Russia, as it historically had been. It never wanted to be part of Ukraine. Of course Putin wants to denazify Ukraine, do you want the neonazis to continue to run it?

      • Johnny Conspiranoid

        “Boris Johnson, who pressured Kyiv into continuing the fight, David Arahamiya, the leader of Ukraine’s ruling party confirmed in a recent interview, published on Friday, November 24th.”
        Why would David Arahamiya, the leader of Ukraine’s ruling party, lie about this?

        • Tom Welsh

          Reluctant as I am to believe that a senior Ukrainian politician told the truth about anything – he is still far more credible than HMG.

  • AG

    Kit Klarenberg yesterday with his latest piece on the new British state security laws designed to silence people like him, Craig Murray, Julian Assange.
    Some of this was discussed here before of course:

    I had been detained under Britain’s 2019 Counter-Terrorism and Border Security Act, which the UN has branded draconian and repressive. Under its Schedule 3 powers, anyone entering British territory suspected of “hostile activity” on behalf of a foreign power can be detained, interrogated for six hours, and have the contents of their digital devices seized and stored. “Hostile acts” are defined as any behavior deemed threatening to Britain’s “national security” or its “economic well-being.”

    More disturbingly, Schedule 3 is suspicionless. Under its terms, “it is immaterial whether a person is aware that activity in which they are or have been engaged is hostile activity, or whether a state for or on behalf of which, or in the interests of which, a hostile act is carried out has instigated, sanctioned, or is otherwise aware of, the carrying out of the act.” It must be quite an elaborate conspiracy when conspirators do not even know they’re conspiring.”

    on the persistent lies re: Wikileaks:

    British lawmakers explicitly cited WikiLeaks in multiple parliamentary debates on the Act. The motive behind the law, they insisted, was to prevent and deter “unauthorised disclosures” by any individual or organization ever again. Along the way, they repeatedly libeled Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, parroting the the demonstrably false narrative that WikiLeaks’ exposure of Western war crimes threatened innocent lives.

    “Some of the examples of such leaks that we have seen put agents’ lives at risk, put vital parts of our national security and intelligence infrastructure at risk and are highly irresponsible. We need safeguards to protect against that kind of damaging impact on our national security.”

    In fact, a leaked 2011 Pentagon report concluded there was “no significant ‘strategic impact’” to WikiLeaks’ release of either the Afghanistan War Diary or Iraq War Logs, provided to Assange by then-US soldier Chelsea Manning. During Manning’s ensuing trial, US government lawyers were forced to admit no one had been harmed in any way as a result of her disclosures. The prosecution conceded this finding during Assange’s initial extradition proceedings in February 2020. A central pillar of the British state’s case for the National Security Act is therefore based on lies. ”

    And our old friend Paul Mason pops up again. (a frm. le monde diplomatique contributor!)

    How could things get so much out of hand in Europe?
    I am asking this myself everyday…

  • harry law

    The state are very concerned about “extremist militants” such as Craig Murray and followers on his blog. This fear can be apparent when ordinary citizens confront leaders such as Keir Starmer who has been hiding from public view because of his obnoxious views on Gaza i.e. he thinks Israel has the right to deprive 2.3 million Palestinians of food, water and energy, N Ferrari [LBC] video proof he said those words and never retracted them, of course to retract them might have prompted the obvious next question, do you condemn the Israeli government for advocating this, which he would never do, being a Zionist without qualification.
    .Keir Starmer’s refusal to recognise Amnesty International’s findings about Israeli apartheid isn’t just a betrayal of Palestinians – it shows that his appreciation for human rights extends only as far as it benefits his career.
    Will he show up in Rochdale? I believe he has been advised not to show his miserable face.

    • Republicofscotland

      harry law.

      Harry good comment, the below article spells out in which direction UK governments are heading, if they aren’t already there yet.

      “A government led by a prime minister who hasn’t been elected in a popular vote backs Israel’s brutal war, complete with mass killings and war crimes, with military and diplomatic support.

      He does so with the support of the country’s main opposition party, in the face of public calls for a ceasefire.

      His government explicitly rejects a legal ruling by the World Court to the effect that Israel is plausibly promoting genocide.

      Ministers do not face, and will never face, investigation for their complicity in those crimes or even any political sanction. The foreign secretary, Lord Cameron of Chipping Norton, is not even elected.

      All the while, the media buries key features of UK backing for Israel – such as secret spy flights and facilitation of arms shipments to the Israeli war machine.

      Does this look like a democracy?

      Well, no it isn’t – it’s Britain. The open secret is that this is how UK governance tends to work not only in all its wars but in its daily foreign policy.

      An oligarchy is where a small number of people exert control over the state. Other terms used by scholars for systems that fall well short of the “liberal democracy” we are supposed to live under include “electoral autocracies” and “exclusionary democracies”.

      British foreign policy-making is so centralised that it is akin to an authoritarian regime. A prime minister can send troops to war or bomb another country without even consulting parliament, as the UK has recently been doing in Yemen.

      Not that it would have mattered – since the main “opposition” party in England supports UK lawlessness as much as the ruling one.

      In 1976, Lord Hailsham famously termed the UK an “elective dictatorship” because parliament is easily dominated by the government of the day and faces few constraints on its power.

      This was before prime minister Margaret Thatcher centralised decision-making still further in the 1980s, regularly bypassing the cabinet and relying on a small set of advisers. Because she could.

      This was continued by Tony Blair, leading to the disastrous invasion of Iraq, among other things. Basically, the prime minister – and one elected only by his own Tory MPs, in Sunak’s case – and a few of his mates can get away with murder, and it’s all deemed perfectly acceptable.”

      • Nota Tory Fanboy

        Don’t forget Brexit:

        Miller’s Supreme Court case against the Government determined that Parliament must have a specific vote in favour of telling the Prime Minister to invoke Article 50 and only then could the PM legally invoke it.

        Have a look to see whether any such specific vote actually ever took place…

      • Bayard

        The UK has a hereditary nominal Head of State and an actual head of state that is not elected as such: he or she are simply elected by their constituents as an ordinary MP, as are all ministers. Indeed, it is perfectly possible for the head of state not to be elected at all as AFAIK, there is nothing to stop Lord Cameron being Prime Minister, for instance. The people only choose the legislature. They have no say in who is chosen, not by them, out of the legislature to form the government. This is supposed to be a “democracy”, whereas Russia, with its head of state directly elected by a popular vote, is supposed to be an “autocracy”. There are few “democracies” less democratic than the the UK.

    • Tom Welsh

      “Extremist”: anyone who disagrees with the government about anything.
      “Militant”: someone who won’t shut up when told to.

  • harry law

    The Rules Based Order has been torn apart by the ICJ decision on Gaza. the US position on the allegation of Genocide was called ‘meritless by Antony Blinken,. and nonsense and wrong by UK Foreign Secretary David Cameron, when being interviewed [see video below] he came across as a bigoted, no nothing moron and that is being charitable.

    • Republicofscotland

      Yes Harry this article somewhat mirrors what you say, that the RBIO suits US hegemony.

      A snippet.

      “Biden’s green light to Israel creates doubt in the legitimacy of the “rules-based international order.” It also clarifies what that order truly is. For while the rules-based international order sounds like “international law,” in reality it is the substitution of international law with the prerogatives of American hegemony. Biden is not engaging in hypocrisy, exactly, in punishing Russia for acts that he materially supports when Israel does them. He is engaging in exceptionalism.

      To be clear, many in and out of the US government often treat the term “rules-based international order” as a synonym for international law. And proponents of the rules-based international order are happy to use or hail international law when it serves the United States, like when the International Criminal Court seeks to arrest Vladimir Putin for his war crimes in Ukraine. Yet the United States will never submit itself to the ICC. Under President George W. Bush, the US revoked its (unratified) signature to the treaty establishing the court. Under President Donald Trump, it sanctioned the families of ICC prosecutors who opened a war-crimes investigation into the US war in Afghanistan. That is how the rules-based international order operates. It doesn’t replace the mechanisms of international law; it places asterisks beside them. The rules may bind US adversaries, but the US and its clients can opt out.”

      • Bayard

        Wilhoit’s Law: “Conservatism consists of exactly one proposition, to wit: There must be in-groups whom the law protects but does not bind, alongside out-groups whom the law binds but does not protect.”

        • Tom Welsh

          n adjective
          1 averse to change or innovation and holding traditional values. Ø(of dress or taste) sober and conventional.
          2 (in a political context) favouring free enterprise, private ownership, and socially conservative ideas. Ø(Conservative) relating to a Conservative Party.
          3 (of an estimate) purposely low for the sake of caution.
          4 (of surgery or medical treatment) intended to control rather than eliminate a condition, and preserve existing tissue.
          n noun
          1 a conservative person.
          2 (Conservative) a supporter or member of a Conservative Party.

          conservatism noun
          conservatively adverb
          conservativeness noun

        • Tom Welsh

          Wilhoit apparently disliked conservatism, or he would not have ascribed to it behaviour that characterises governments and other power-groups everywhere and always.

          The alleged “law” perfectly describes, for instance, the current US Democratic Party and German Green party. And the UK’s Labour Party.

          • Bayard

            Yes the “law” works a lot better with the first sentence altered to “There is exactly one proposition that defines an oligarchy, to wit:…”

          • Tom Welsh

            Yes, Bayard, that reads better. Although actually it’s almost a tautology to say that in an oligarchy there are in-groups whom the law protects but does not bind, alongside out-groups whom the law binds but does not protect. Because an oligarchy is, by definition, the ultimate in-group.

            The case is further muddied by the fact that human beings, as great apes, seem to behave that way naturally. Protect the in-group, and project the corresponding hostility against all out-groups. Very much as a refrigerator keeps its contents cold by pumping out heat to the outside. Brilliantly depicted in “1984”, and almost better in Israel’s current behaviour.

            Sigmund Freud, in one of his last books, wondered whether it was even possible for any civilisation to hold together for long unless it had external enemies to exert pressure on it. He was inclined to think not.

          • Tom Welsh

            Further to my last, the political leadership and media of the USA and UK are providing perfect examples of the desperate need to find external enemies and scapegoats to blame as internal order and prosperity collapse. I confess to not having actually watched this video (you’ll see why) but it looks like a good example of how presumably clever, educated, well-informed Americans can entertain absurd conspiracy theories about how dastardly foreigners (in this case China) are conspiring to do down good ol’ USA. Apparently the immigrant crisis on the USA’s southern border is China’s fault! Whoda thunk it…


            Tucker Carlson is one of those Americans who is somewhat rational about Russia, but compensates by being ridiculously hostile to China. I find almost all Americans portray Russia, China, or both as the source of all their ills. Personally I see both countries as admirably sane, balanced, and peaceable. But then I’m not hopelessly neurotic, and I don’t need paranoid delusions to compensate for a sense of inferiority.

  • harry law

    Labour deputy leader Angela Rayner has run away from locals challenging her over her party’s complicity in Israel’s genocide in Gaza.
    While out campaigning, Rayner ran into a group shouting – via loudhailer – ‘shame on you’ and fled as fast as she could get into her car and escape: I hope Starvem has the gall to visit Rochdale and receives the welcome the POS deserves.

    • Brianfujisan

      I don’t agree with GG Stance that Scotland Should be cadged. I went to him for … etc, Iraq, Palestine.

      … But he is moving

      • jake

        Yes, he’s moving…

        “They lied to you. The Devil is not the Prince of Matter; the Devil is the arrogance of the spirit, faith without smile, truth that is never seized by doubt. The Devil is grim because he knows where he is going, and, in moving, he always returns whence he came.” (Umberto Eco, The Name of the Rose)

        but always returns whence he came

  • Tom74

    Carlson wouldn’t have been allowed to have interviewed Putin without the agreement of the US government, given the sanctions situation – which is why the broadcast laboured the power of the CIA and tried to blame Boris Johnson for the US losing yet another war. Johnson has always been a US stooge, hence his support for Brexit and the Ukraine war. The Americans try to blame their stooges for their incompetence, which is why Blair got the blame for Iraq in the media – rather than Bush and his far-right henchmen.

    • David Warriston

      Yes, I think Biden and his crew protesteth too much. There was nothing new in what Putin said, save his history lesson at the start.

      The Carlson interview, which Biden’s regime affect to denounce, allows them some leeway in future. Carlson is opening up ground for future negotiations. He has served his country well.

      • zoot

        Tom said the Americans engineered the interview because they want people to know the US was behind the Ukraine coup of 2014 and the destruction of western Europe’s critical infrastructure in 2022; also so their military defeat to Russia could be blamed on Boris Johnson.

        He also said the Americans were behind Brexit and that they told the media to blame Blair for Iraq.

    • Bayard

      Yes, it puzzled me at the time why it was Johnson who did the deed, not Nuland or another American. It probably puzzled Zelensky, too, but I doubt there was much he could do about it.

      • Tom Welsh

        Plausible deniability. They like to spread the blame – and give the false impression of “consensus”.

        And Johnson probably volunteered – the creep.

        • Bayard

          I am currently reading a book entitled “The Fraud”. It is not a biography of Johnson, but with that title it could easily be mistaken for one. He is the lowest form of human life.

          • Greg Park

            He really is no worse than anyone else in mainstream UK politics and media. Who among them has condemned their nemesis for thwarting peace in Ukraine? Or throughout the bogus antisemitism “crisis”, the naked antisemitism in his novels? Boris’s most vocal opponents are objectively even bigger frauds than him.

    • Steve Hayes

      It’s quite clear that the powers that be don’t want people to watch the interview so it’s hard to think they wanted it made in the first place. The Guardian opened with an amazingly sneery piece about it which quickly disappeared to be replaced with a slightly less blatant discouragement. Their problem is that they’ve led the bulk of the population to imagine Putin as a sub-Hitleresque ranter urging his troops in their snow-covered boots ever onwards towards the Pas de Calais. Us seeing him in the flesh as a rather long-winded politician who, unlike ours, actually answers questions even if not always completely is the last thing they’d want. They won’t be happy about the around 200 million views so far.

      • Bayard

        OTOH, there is the Streisand Effect: the best thing to get people to watch something is tell them they mustn’t. I think it was Tom Lehrer whose career as a singer/songwriter really took off after he was banned.


        I must have missed the shots of Putin stroking a beautiful white cat with his plastic false hand…….

        Oh hang on a minute, that was a James Bond movie.

        It’s not real that, is it?

        Meanwhile the Most Moral Army in the world are aiming to serve up a fait accompli to Egypt in The Sinai Desert to take in the Latest Lost Tribes of Israel.

        Or at least get Egypt and the left liberal world look after them while they tidy up the destruction the have wreaked on Gaza in order to get down to making plans as to how to exploit this oil and gas that resides (surprise surprise) in or around Gaza and the sea.

        All they have to do is demand that the PLA give up their rights to the gas and oil fields.

        That could be the real ‘business’ part of the unfinished business?

        If true of course – the Fog of War and all that.

        Easy money for all concerned in the US and Israel.

        Gives a new twist to the Land to the Sea routine trotted out as in: the oil and the gas is ours from the land of Palestine to the sea.

      • Tom Welsh

        It’s unfair to call Mr Putin “long-winded”. He takes as long as he considers necessary to make his point and to provide his audience with whatever facts are necessary to understand it. It’s certainly not his fault that Westerners are so astonishingly ignorant. Mr Putin has been confronted with Western “leaders” who confused Austria with Australia, and who vowed that the UK government would never recognise Voronezh and Rostov-na-Donu as Russian; it is a very fair bet that they are utterly uninformed about Russian history.

        Noam Chomsky explained the issue with ironic succinctness:

        “There was once an interview with Jeff Greenfield in which he was asked why I was never asked onto Nightline.  He gave a good answer. He said the main reason was that I lacked concision. I had never heard that word before. You have to have concision. You have to say something brief between two commercials.

        “What can you say that’s brief between two commercials? I can say Iran is a terrible state. I don’t need any evidence. I can say Ghaddaffi carries out terror. Suppose I try to say the US carries out terror, in fact it’s one of the leading terrorist states in the world. You can’t say that between commercials. People rightly want to know what do you mean. They’ve never heard that before. Then you have to explain. You have to give background. That’s exactly what’s cut out. Concision is a technique of propaganda. It ensures you cannot do anything except repeat clichés, the standard doctrine, or sound like a lunatic”.

        — Noam Chomsky (interview with Laura Flanders, 24/4/2012).

        • Tom Welsh

          Frederic Bastiat explained even more pithily nearly 200 years ago:

          “We must admit that our opponents in this argument have a marked advantage over us. They need only a few words to set forth a half-truth; whereas, in order to show that it is a half-truth, we have to resort to long and arid dissertations”.

        • Steve Hayes

          When I said “long winded”, I meant the impression given in comparison to our sound-bite obsessed politicians. I initially doubted if I could make it through the two hours plus but did in the end and found it quite interesting. But of course there’s no way I can remember all those things Putin said, which is why our politicians like sound bites so much.

          My main takeaways were that Putin was able to give all those long answers without notes. Almost certainly he’d had the questions ahead of time but it’s still hard to imagine any of our political leaders matching that. Impossible in the case of Biden. Carlson didn’t come back on most of the answers and I’d have liked to hear more about the strategic aspects of Crimea in particular and on Putin’s view of a multipolar world and on the role of Europe if it has one. But at least we didn’t have the painful spectacle of the interviewer asking the same question and the interviewee dodging it over and over. By the end of the two hours we could see that Putin was getting tired and starting to go round in circles but again – Biden. Probably most of the viewers will be Trump supporters and it’ll feed into an isolationist America First vibe with them but considering the damage that’s been done to Europe and especially Germany in the current situation, that might not be a bad thing for us on this side of the ocean.

          • Tom Welsh

            Much depends upon context. I may have mentioned that, in 1965 or thereabouts, I was given a one-term course on Russian history. We started at the earliest times, and covered perhaps a bit more than you’d find in “Teach Yourself Russian History”. Nevertheless, I remember most of it today. Not in the sense that I could repeat it – not at all! – but most of it sounds familiar and “right”.

            As Mr Putin recited the various important events, I had that feeling at every point. If Westerners find it too long and boring, that’s because they haven’t taken the trouble to inform themselves about the most basic facts – perhaps out of a belief that obscure countries like Russia don’t matter much.

            They can’t have it both ways. Not having learned the basics previously, they can’t complain about having them explained in a most logical, genial way as Mr Putin did. Of course, no one is compelled to listen – but I gather a few did.

  • harry law

    Former British Prime Minister Boris Johnson had a mini-meltdown after being exposed during the Tucker Carlson-Vladimir Putin interview for sabotaging the Ukrainian peace deal.
    In her book The Plot, former Tory MP Nadine Dorries, a hardcore Boris partisan, proudly wrote that Boris was responsible for killing a peace deal with Russia over Ukraine as it was “the right thing to do,” in Boris’s apparent words.
    10:53 PM · Feb 9, 2024

    • harry law

      Boris Johnson is a notorious liar, most people know that, he is responsible for at least 400,000 Ukrainian deaths and probably twice that number injured, He is also responsible for destroying Ukraine and the emigration of half the population. Ditto all the Russian casualties.
      The man has no truth in him, he is only concerned for himself and how the history books will portray him.
      Unfortunately for him, he has been found out. Now go to hell you lying scoundrel.

  • Jack

    ICJ meant nothing as one expected – only resistance, force, actual physical measures will.
    Israel and the world was left unfazed by the first statement that ICJ leveled. Not surprising because the statement was deliberately muddled and muted to the max and therefore sent a green light to Israel to keep doing what they do, since the ICJ statement Israel must have killed over 1000+ Palestinians by now:

    In barbaric new video, Israeli snipers kill defenseless mom and toddler.
    Viral Video: Israeli Soldier Tells IDF To ‘Kill All Palestinians’
    Israeli soldiers record themselves destroying building in Gaza and celebrating afterwards
    Israeli soldier destroys civilian’s property in mockery of Gazan hardships
    The Israeli Defence Forces are reportedly destroying all buildings in the #Gaza Strip within a km of the Israel-Gaza fence.

    What is most sickening is that the same group of people then have the gall to frame themselves as victims, persecuted. Israel is nothing but a nazi regime, the 2023/2024 version, lets be frank.

    World could of course stop this visceral, barbaric regime. But they choose not to. The west choose not to, the arab world choose not do. There are so many complicit actors by now, instead of calling out Israel, which seems to lead to nothing, perhaps the stream of shame, (call-)outings, criticism, should be directed at the outside nations making this genocide possible whether they are presidents, national/local politicians, business leaders, media personalities, journalists etc.

      • Jack

        Seriously, after now 4 months of non stop sadistic warfare by Israel either by the tactics of deliberate starvation, bombing, torture, kidnapping/detention of thousands of civilans, wanton destruction, killing of most likely 15000 children and after repeated “condemnations”, reports, ICJ statements and now this, the attack on Rafah one has really reached the cul de sac of things, the arab leaders really need to rid themselves of their cowardice, their political corruption their zero-empathy stance they have embraced not only past 4 months but the last 20 or so years when Israel have commited the same brutality against Gaza and the West Bank. Either the arab leaders wake the f-up or I really hope and I encourage that the arab population also get their grip together and unseat these class of horrible leaders by coup d’etat. The arab world need a real, Arab spring getting rid of these corrupt leaders and their pro/west/israeli-“deep state”-aparatus.

        The nasty leader of Egypt will have to open the gates sooner or later for humanitarian concerns – it is inevitable by now – just like Israel wants and the palestinians problem will be taken over by Egypt: that is what you get for playing along with a genocide Mr Sisi, or is it Sissy?

        British documents reveal Israeli plans to nullify Egyptian sovereignty over strategic Sinai Peninsula

      • Laguerre

        “Now we await the serious repercussions that the corrupt leadership of Saudi Arabia promised mere days ago sigh.”

        Don’t expect the Saudis to go to war; they’re not equipped to do so. They don’t have the personnel; the army is just jobs for the boys – the handout of posts to keep the non-Saudi tribes on side. Saudi intervention is always financial when effective, as they did in Syria. Yemen was a big mistake – there’s a story 3 brigades once surrendered without fighting (Saudi closely controls what news gets out), and for a long time Houthis were free to wander into Saudi territory because there was no-one to stop them (the border areas were conquered from the Yemenis by Ibn Saud in the early 1930s, and sympathise with them).

      • Laguerre

        No, I don’t think Sisi will open the gates to let the Gazans in. If he did that, he would risk his own position. Opinion in Egypt must be at boiling point, and letting Israel do what it wants would cause it to explode. Getting strung up from a lamppost is not in Sisi’s plans. And Israel won’t get Sinai back either; that horse has long ago bolted.

        • Tom Welsh

          If it were a dispute between individuals, in which one man was threatening to murder another, we would praise the householder who threw open his door and welcomed the fugitive to safety.

          It would be an interesting essay question to enumerate all the ways in which the Palestinian situation is essentially different from that simplified scenario.

          It’s one thing to give a single person refuge for an hour or two, or maybe overnight, or until the police arrive. It’s quite another to harbour 2 million penniless refugees (less however many the Israelis have butchered) indefinitely – because there are no police in the world of nations and wars.

          Moreover, Egypt and other countries have already absorbed very many Palestinian fugitives, at great cost to themselves and their own peoples. Not to mention that some Palestinians are hardened, angry, cynical fighters determined to take revenge on Israel and unlikely to go easy on anyone who gets in their way.

          The fundamental objection is simply that the Israelis must not be allowed to get away with expelling an entire nation from their own country, simply so that the Israelis can have it instead.

          • Jack

            Tom Welsh

            That is playing cynical politics, and I understood and supported that route for a long time but when arab leaders and world at large still do nothing and let Israel decide the fate, they should open the gates by now. Egypt is already complicit in the genocide by all ties and collaborations with Israel.
            That is the thing in my view, if no one do anything in practice to stop Israel, well then Israel perhaps should indeed have it their way to stop and alleviate the senseless suffering going on – especially since majority of the people in Gaza are youngsters – because what other option do we have when the whole middle-east watch passively by what is going on months after months year after year? If Palestine cannot even get the support by their alleged 500million-or-so brothers in the region, exactly who or what is going to stop Israel? Not the US/EU. Not the ICJ. Not the neighbors. Not any oppositional group in Israel. Not the possible incoming Trump as president. So who?

            Unfortunately the terrible truth is that the egytpian elite hate the Palestinians:

            These article below is from 2014: Egyptian press repeat Israeli lies as Sisi keeps Gaza border closed

            Egypt’s propagandists and the Gaza massacre

            Thus, the only solution fo save the Palestinian people, as such, is 1 for the arab population to dethrone these treasonous elites ruling them, or 2 that the arab leaders themselves kick their sick habit and start actually helping the Palestinians. I hope for number 1. Arab world need a clean break, they need to root out the corrupt treasonous sickness in total and for good this time.

          • Laguerre

            “Unfortunately the terrible truth is that the egytpian elite hate the Palestinians:”

            You’re citing old links there from 10 years ago. Everything changed on 7th October; that is universally admitted. Also the word “hate” is wrong. What Israel wanted them to do was to forget Palestine, and they succeeded to a fair degree. The elite had other issues they wanted to concentrate on. But that has all changed now, and Palestine is back in focus.

          • Laguerre

            Tom Welsh
            February 12, 2024 at 16:07
            “If it were a dispute between individuals, in which one man was threatening to murder another, we would praise the householder who threw open his door and welcomed the fugitive to safety.”

            I agree with your final conclusion, but I can’t see the relevance of this opening. The situation is not at all comparable. The fact is, if one were threatening to kill another in the street, taking the threatened one into your house would probably not save him, as the killer might well follow up into the house. The solution is to call the cops, or disrupt the fight, neither of which is possible here, as the cops are on the side of the killer.

          • Jack


            Nothing has changed, obviously, the Egyptians still repeat israeli propaganda about Hamas, still support the israeli blockade, still do nothing. Yes those articles were 10 years ago, I could link links from 20 years ago if you want because this problem, issue is not new or have gone away, it is what Egypt is about when it comes to Palestine.

            Gaza genocide enabled by Arab leaders

          • Laguerre


            Egypt is not a monolithic single unchanging entity. And you want to cite articles from even longer ago!! I don’t care what people thought 20 years rather than 10 years ago. The question is now, and who thinks what. Egypt, like Jordan, is on the edge. Things could very easily go wrong, and if Netanyahu pushes through his genocide to a finish, as he seems to be about to do, Sisi will be in serious danger, as anybody in Egypt can see who’s next.

  • Ewan2

    Perhaps a bit off topic:

    ¨Irish women’s basketball team refuse to shake hands with Israel.¨

    This was written at the end of the article:
    ` About 1300 people were killed during the Hamas attacks on southern Israel on 7 October last year.
    More than 27,500 Palestinians have been killed and at least 65,000 by the war launched by Israel since then, according to the Hamas run Health ministry. ¨

    Israelis are ¨people`, though the Palestinians are not, it appears.

    Couldn’t find the author of the articles name

  • harry law

    Missile expert Uzi Rubin has warned Israel of the Hezbollah precision missile threat and spoke about what cost millions of dollars 20/30 years ago now costs approx $150 with a smart phone and a pair of winglets. All the coordinates with GPS can direct a dumb missile to any site in Israel, including Dimona. The so-called Iron Dome would be overwhelmed. Israels defence position is compromised by the ineffectiveness of its much-vaunted Iron Dome System which – according to Professor Theodore A Postol Physicist Professor emeritus, science, Technology and National Security policy, ballistic missile defence etc. atc. MIT – said iron dome may be 5% effective.
    During the November 2012 conflict, a detailed review of a large number of photographs of Iron Dome interceptor contrails revealed that the rocket-defense system’s success rate was very low – as low as 5 percent or, perhaps, even less. The collection of data for Iron Dome’s performance in July 2014 is still in progress. The data we have collected so far, however, indicates the performance of Iron Dome has not markedly improved.
    No doubt Israel could destroy many of its enemies’ vital structures and many thousands of enemy citizens, but in the end Israel will lose everything.

    • will moon

      Who cares about the iron dome? You have mentioned this Rubin fellow, and this point before. In case you haven’t noticed few Israeli civilians have been killed since the start of this conflict – mainly hostages killed by Israeli bombardment, though Israel has also shot dead some hostages with small arms

      Palestinians civilians have no defence from Israeli missiles and bombs and 30,000–40,000 have been killed and they are still being slaughtered right now

      The efficacy of the iron dome seems a niche concern which has little relevance to the ongoing genocide

      Do Palestinians care about the iron dome? Do neutrals care about the iron dome? The only people who care about it are Israelis. While Israel slaughters civilians, children especially, with such abandon, why should fears over the efficacy of it command our attention?

      • harry law

        will moon, the reason I mention the Iron dome and its lack of efficiency is because Hezbollah have 120,000 missiles (many precision), which can make Israel unviable, destroying all ports especially Haifa, power stations, water treatment facilities, gas rigs and other vital infrastructure. Hezbollah have not started yet. I share your frustration about the trapped Palestinians and the 30,000 killed so far.
        But please understand that the demise of Israel backed by the West cannot be done overnight, much as you and I want it to be.
        All the latest technology is in the hands of the ‘arc of resistance’ in the end Israel cannot prevail, be patient.

        • will moon

          You speak of the “Balance of Terror”. If those missiles are launched at Israel, Israel will launch their missiles – many of which will be nuclear. Equally, if Israel launches atomic strikes those missiles will be fired at Israel. It is a form of MAD – mutually assured destruction – though not the nuclear form originally envisaged in Conflict Management studies, essentially the same model, which has been well gamed since the early years of the Cold War. Why do you think this worthy of re-iterating?

          My frustration is your labouring the point about Israeli air defence – who cares? You don’t mention what Israel or America might do an enemy. You listing numbers and details obscures the issue. Why don’t you tell us about Israeli or American offensive weaponry, why the focus on one side of a projected conflict?

          You counsel patience; yet my patience is deep, bounded only by hope. My patience is that of the helpless victim – the hungry child whose parents have been killed, the distraught brother whose sister lies bloody on a makeshift operating table – what will be done will be done and the weak will suffer what they must. This is the depth of my patience

          • harry law

            will moon, ” Israel will launch their missiles – many of which will be nuclear.” alright, what you are saying is Israel’s enemies may as well give up now and let Israel/US dominate the region through force of arms, with all due respect that is a cowardly way of acting and assumes the ‘arc of resistance’ have no self respect. Israel will not use nuclear weapons: it knows that will not be tolerated by the rest of the world. Yes, there will be massive destruction; I wish it was not so, but there is no other alternative. Israel/US have destroyed International law in favour of the ‘rules based order’ – i.e. the US/Israel make the rules, everyone follows them, OR ELSE.

          • Laguerre

            Israeli nuclear missiles can’t be fired at Hamas or Hizbullah, as they are so close the fallout will wash over Israel itself. Israeli nuclear missiles can only be fired at Iran, or Europe, as the Israelis plan.

          • will moon

            Laguerre, Israel is reputed to have “neutron bombs”, maybe several varieties.

            “Radiological warfare with neutron bombs that rely on fission primaries would thus still produce fission fallout, albeit a comparatively cleaner and shorter-lasting version of it in the area than if air bursts were used, as little to no fission products would be deposited on the direct immediate area, instead becoming diluted global fallout.”

            The above (cribbed from wiki/neutron bomb) suggests the possibility that such radiological weaponry could be used on Lebanon – if, as harry law suggests, Hezbollah attempts to blow Israel up using high explosive rockets/missiles or if Israel opts for first strike

            Interestingly, radiological devices/neutron bombs can also be used to bring down large barrages of missiles/rockets across broad fronts. The Soviets developed such technology in the latter days of the Cold War, according to above-mentioned wiki article. If Israel possesses this technology they may well be able to interdict mass barrages of rockets/missiles, much reducing the damage that might be done if large numbers of conventional projectiles were launched at the country. Some radiological damage is probably better than complete destruction

  • harry law

    The IOF forces in Gaza are “achieving” casualty rates far higher than in all the other wars combined which they have been involved in since the Nakba in 1948. Even official Israeli sources have revealed that wounded alone are more than 12,000”.
    That is before Hezbollah have started up proper, wait till they unleash their thousands of precision missiles on all the sites in Israel which make it viable, power stations, water treatment facilities, all its ports including Ben Gurion airport all within easy reach of Hezbollah’s precision missiles. The Houthis have closed the Red sea with missiles (which are not top of the range) and cheap drones. Hezbollah could close Haifa and Ashdod ports which account for almost 90% import/export trade, with a combination of precision missiles and very cheap naval mines which can be directed into those shipping lanes from Lebanese territory along the coast or placed in those lanes by small vessels. (Haifa can almost be seen by eye from the Lebanese border.) No ships would enter or leave those ports or be able to get insurance knowing of a mine field in that extensive body of water. Berlin airlift anyone.

  • harry law

    Israel’s appalling – and woefully inept – propaganda has been exposed again after the Israeli military showed reporters around what it claimed was a ‘Hamas tunnel’ under the Gaza HQ of UN aid agency UNRWA.

    A video published by Fox News of the tour revealed green boxes on the walls of the supposed ‘tunnel’ – but as former diplomat Craig Murray pointed out, the boxes are not supposed ‘terror’ equipment. Instead, they are solar power converters kept in a cellar to keep them cool as they process energy from solar panels above – and the wires leading from them into the UNRWA building were there to send the converted electricity up into the HQ, as you’d expect:

    [ Mod: Your comment consists only of text followed by a web link, with no indication that all of the text has been copied from that web page.

    Kindly note Craig’s guidance in the moderation rules for commenters:

    Contributions which are primarily just a link to somewhere else will be deleted. You can post links, but give us the benefit of your thoughts upon them.”

    As advised previously, kindly cite the web link first, then enclose the copied text within quote markers, and make some kind of comment of your own. ]

  • harry law

    Jack, sorry no reply function on your comment. I share your frustration about the Arab leaders, but their overthrow may take some time, because you and I think these things should be done immediately, in other words as the Emperor Caligula wished that the Roman people had but one neck that he might cut it off, and as I thought this I was capable of wishing the same thing concerning all the Arab leaders. Unfortunately 30,000 Palestinians cannot be brought back to life, but I think their sacrifice has galvanized all the people in the Middle East and the world, to ensure the racist, Apartheid, supremacist and Genocidal state of Israel ceases to exist

        • Jack

          Dead wrong. US, Israel got worried and fought to the maximum to stop the overthrow of the arab leaders since they were allied with them, unfortunately US/Israel succeeded to great lengths in putting the breaks on a real political/change-up/overhaul in the middle east.

          • Stevie Boy

            Maybe you’re right Jack. However, it is a fact that the power in Egypt is held by the military and that hasn’t changed one bit, Arab spring or not, now we have General Sisi in charge. The CIA has worked closely with the Egyptian military from the 1950s onwards, as has Mossad and MI6, that has not changed. I am cynical of any MSM reporting of ‘the peoples’ uprisings, underneath it all is usually a Western-sponsored agenda. And, all the uprisings failed once the government was changed to the benefit of the west. I don’t believe Egypt was any different.

  • Jack

    More of the same:

    What fuels antisemitism? Sheer envy
    The Irish team’s refusal to acknowledge their Israeli opponents smacks of jealousy

    Oh then I assume the jews of the 30-40s were in reality envy of Hitler and that is why they disliked him (sarcasm of course).

    Not to mention, why on earth would anyone “envy” a group of people that engage in joyful child-murdering in the thousands? Are people supposed to be impressed by this? Or am I the lunatic here, have I missed something? Is putting lead in babies the new fashion?

    Zionists are obviously more brainwashed than a North Korean, but not only brainwashed but also ultra-nationalists, racists.
    They do not seems to understand how similar they are to nazi germany with their perverted, racist mentality.

    • Derek Doobey

      “They do not seems to understand how similar they are to nazi germany with their perverted, racist mentality.”

      They do understand.

      Zionists’ references to the Nazis aren’t anything about mourning, self-defence, or universal values. And they know it.

      • Stevie Boy

        The events of WW2 and the holocaust are a useful crutch for the zionists to beat any dissenters with. Zionism has its roots way back in the late 1800s and early 1900s prior to the two world wars. There has been a long standing agenda to capture the, whole, ME, and, the zionists don’t care much for anyone, including Jews, who get in their way. Zionism is well on the way to being a worse scourge than the Nazis.

  • Jack

    South Africa urges ICJ to act against Rafah offensive
    The expansion of Israel’s ground operations in the southern Gaza city may further violate Palestinians’ rights, Johannesburg says

    Disgraceful that it is South Africa that still (have to) carry all the burden. Why is it that they have to do every single thing here? They are not even a neighboring state, they are not of the same ethnicity, religion. Shameful, utterly shameful passivity by the actual close neighboring nations to Palestine! Sooner or later South Africa will get tired from doing all the work without getting any support, and who is then supposed to carry the legal torch for Palestine? No one is most likely the answer.



      Sadly the answer in this conflict may not come down to legalities.

      South Africa have done sterling work and the Yemenis are attempting to stop further dastardly attacks on the Palestinians in an unusual but effective way.

      The thing for all the media sages and pundits is that someone has to win this conflict and at the moment it looks like Israel is winning the military battle. But War is a different thing altogether and can come from nowhere if things get out of hand.

      It takes on a dynamic all of it’s own and quickly.

      The fact is is, if Netenyahu and his crazy friends do attempt to drive the Gazans/Palestinians into the Sinai Desert and kill many thousands on the way doing that then the populaces of Egypt and Jordan could revolt and that would really up the ante. Add to that the deliberate provocation from Israel and to some extent the US – of Hezbollah and indirectly Iran and we (and them) will enter into a different ball game.

      Netanyahu has to keep this conflict going in order to stay out of jail but it is a very long time to wait for Trump to get into the Whitehouse but Trump will back Israel more not less than Biden. No matter though because at the moment Biden is doing the work until Trump gets in.

      Meanwhile the MSM delusional reporting goes on and on. All the evidence is in front of them and they should know because they report it daily. But they choose not to ask any questions. Because if you do as Starmer is finding out you will be brought crashing down.

      A cynic would think that the Israel Lobbyist don’t trust a grovelling Labour Party (even one led by Starmer and his fellow grovellers) and have plans to make sure if his Party wins the GE then they will dance to the Lobby’s tunes.

      Which suggests to me that as far a Israel and the IDF go they are planning some very nasty things. As I say though that is winning a few battles.

      A proper all out War is a different proposition – which if it went wrong could mean the end of Israel as a State. You can’t have a One State solution if your State no longer exists. That is the danger of War. Someone has to win.

      And that is where legalities or illegalities become meaningless.

      • Derek Doobey

        This has to be the headline of the moment:

        “BBC Verify looks at how Rafah became home to 1.5 million Palestinians”.

        Oh thank you, thank you, BBC Truth Department, you who are never afraid to speak the verified truth even against the wishes of hasbara commanders. And how nice of you to report on how 1.5 million Palestinians terrorised out of their homes in a continuing genocidal slaughter that has already killed 28000 of them have decided to make Rafah their “home”. Can we contribute by sending them some antimacassars maybe, so they can make their new homes even more homely?

        Never mind what may or may not happen in November, Mark, and it will be many more than a few thousand more deaths if the Zionists attack Rafah and attempt to remove its population. Yes we are entering a new period. The Zionist play method with the UN will soon be applied to major countries, probably including some or all of France, the USA, Germany, Britain, and Russia.

        Personally I think the Tories will win the next general election, for what it’s worth.

        You have to realise that there are markets in Britain in which “being against anti-Semitism” is code for being against South Asian immigrants and any nth-generation descendants of South Asian immigrants.

        I have experienced those who think like that. I’m talking about people who don’t know Al Quds from Ashkenazism, or hanukkah from halal. They’ve probably rarely ever thought about Jews other than at bible class. But in the past few years they’ve decided they are “against anti-Semitism”.

        Compare it with Brexit. It’s very similar. I’ve spoken with supporters of Brexit who tell me the reason they voted for it was because the “unelected European Parliament” was so strong. I told them the EU Parliament was a) elected and b) quite weak really, but they really couldn’t care less about that kind of thing. Obviously what they were saying was the reason wasn’t the real reason. The real reason was they don’t like there being so many non-whites in Britain.

    • Derek Doobey

      It can be looked at another way, though – let’s give the South African government the praise it greatly deserves.

      As for being of the same or different ethnicity, I’ll tell you who really stands out – and that’s the Abbas government. There are 3 million Palestinians in the West Bank and Jerusalem, 2 million in Gaza, 1.6 million in the 1948 occupied territories, and about 6 million in a wider diaspora. Most of the Palestinians in Gaza have been bombed and terrorised out of their homes. For them, this is already another Nakba. I repeat: about 40% of the Palestinians who actually live in the territories conquered by the Zionists in 1967, whether still occupied or withdrawn from, have been terrorised out of their homes in the past 4 months. And Abbas STILL cooperates with Israel! He STILL doesn’t declare war. Israeli soldiers literally storm a hospital in Jenin and murder patients, and Abbas STILL does absolutely nothing. The word “traitor” is richly, richly deserved by that man.

      He’d have all the decent people in the world behind him if he stood in front of a camera, listed recent Israeli crimes, and said we are ending all security cooperation, their security is our death, and we now consider ourselves in a state of war.

      But no…he prefers to be their little helper. What a guy. He makes Quisling look like a resistance leader.

      • Derek Doobey

        And not only the terrible things I’ve mentioned so far, but Israel is boasting about preparing an attack on Rafah which would amount to the largest act of genocide since Rwanda, and Abbas does NOTHING.

        The organisations that deserve respect in this, because they are participating in resistance and giving their lives in the struggle, are Hamas and the PFLP. Whatever criticisms one might have of this or that are irrelevant. They are THERE, they are fighting.

  • Derek Doobey

    By order of the President of the King’s Bench Division, eh? That will be Victoria Sharp.

    Victoria Sharp’s father was Eric Sharp, who went from a British state job at the OECD (coal and petroleum committees) to marketing manager at ICI’s British Nylon Spinners (nylon is made from petroleum), to the board of Monsanto (chemicals and biotech), to CEO at Cable and Wireless. Nice work if you can get it.

    Her mother was Marion Freeman. Both parents attended Westminster Synagogue.

    Her twin brother is Richard Sharp, a former Goldman Sachs banker and chairman of the BBC.

    What’s the likelihood that Victoria will ever do anything to embarrass the Foreign Office or upset the US State Department or the Jewish Chronicle?

  • AG

    Some German activity in late 2022 I somehow missed and I only read about it past Nov. regarding the information war over Ukraine:

    A German government whistleblower had leaked documents outlining cooperation between various ministries (e.g. Ministry of the Interior, SoS, Chancellory) to “fight disinformation”, which means of course spreading government propaganda and execute censorship.

    The whistleblower called the documents he provided “only the tip of the iceberg.” Thus only information that was regarded as not too sensitive was communicated internally so that the whistleblower had access. Much more delicate things have taken place which we do not know about.

    Among other things German officials met with the major social media companies to coordinate the censorship.
    They also influenced decisions on what websites are to be banned.

    This filter would eventually forbid setting links to those pages in Germany online.

    I myself got censored for linking ConsortiumNews. I am 100% sure the people deciding over this in the government and the administrators/moderators of the German websites enabling this censorship have no clue who Bob Perry was for instance. Or actually know CN´s work.

    The bases of this censorship thus is complete bullshit and total incompetence of course.

    Apart from the fact that an such censorship ought to be outlawed instantly.

    I´ll put the links to the 2 articles concerning the leaks into the Ukraine Forum.
    Albeit they might be too German-specific and detailed to convey their true significance.

    But it reminds me of TWITTER FIles “light”. A la Allemande.

    It should therefore be of little surprise that the very same government will not lift a finger in favour of Julian Assange.

    Unless ranks and files among the MPs and some decent high-level journalists put some pressure on the SoS or the chancellor. But Scholz has more political issues than a case of split-personality in an asylum. That guy has no time to do what he actually should be doing.

    Document leaks called: “How the federal government is working on a “narrative alignment” on the Ukraine war” 2 parts:

  • Derek Doobey

    Is there a military codeword for the “clearance” of Rafah yet? To judge from past practice it will probably be a religious reference. Cf. “Operation Passover Cleansing” for the removal of the population from Haifa, and Operations “Pillar of Defence” (Pillar of Cloud) and “Cast Lead” for previous, smaller-scale massacres in Gaza.

    Imagine if even a single parliamentarian in the US or one of its satellite countries were to ask WHY an ethnic supremacist regime so often uses religious references when it slaughters the indigenous population and treats them like subhumans or inanimate objects to be cleared out, removed, disposed of.

    One thing is for sure: even though the UN has had more than 150 of its staff murdered by Israel since October, and even though Zionist pressure is removing money from UN relief for the Palestinians, the Security Council will do nothing to stop this fascist genocidalist regime from committing its obscene crimes against the laws of warfare and against humanity.

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