Saturday, March 17, 2018

Is it any surprise? Student “walkout” to protest guns turns bigoted and violent

The Duran | Mar 17, 2018 | Seraphim Hanisch

Wednesday, March 14 was the scheduled day for a “National School Walkout” to protest “gun violence” in the wake of the massacre carried out against students at Marjorie Stoneman-Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida on February 14th of this year. While the event was given the optics of some type of nobility or “plea for the safety” of our nation’s schoolchildren, the event revealed itself to be what all of these liberal-loony events are: license to anarchy, unruly behavior, prejudice and violence.

Ohio – Hilliard Davidson High School

In Ohio, Senior (12th grader) Jacob Shoemaker decided not to take a side on the issue, so instead of marching with the walkout people, or standing with the 2nd Amendment supporters who were being accused of “supporting gun violence”, which is, of course a liberal straw man argument, he opted to sit in his classroom during the event and do his homework.

He was suspended from school for a day. The school cites that it could not be responsible for Shoemaker’s safety and that is why it suspended him.

So, wait. They couldn’t have had a teacher remain in a classroom or two for students who preferred not to participate? This is pretty interesting since it is a school.

Chicago – Chicago School system coercion by curriculum

In Chicago, that wonderful haven of both leftist loons and also the city with the most gun-related violence in America, the student walkout turned into an administration-organized event, sanctioned by the CEO of the Chicago public school system.

Not only that, but the event was made to champion the cause of gun control itself, with internet links provided for study materials, which as Chris Cleveland, a GOP chairman for Chicago noted in a written statement, is tantamount to coercion:
It’s appalling that 10 to 14 year old kids would be coerced, by their teachers, to participate in a political demonstration… A 10-year-old kid isn’t going to have an informed opinion on these political matters, and shouldn’t be expected to have the fortitude to hold a different opinion from everyone else in his or her classroom. This is political indoctrination, pure and simple.” (emphasis mine)
He is correct. The sad fact, though is that Mr. Cleveland is a Republican political activist by virtue of his job, and during liberal lunacy celebrations, he is part of the enemy whether he says anything or not.

But we continue.

Chicago – Walmart

Again in Chicago, some sixty students are alleged by witnesses to have indeed walked out of school… and into a local Walmart, where they promptly decided it was their right to trash the place.

 In legal parlance, we are told that one should say “alleged” when a court hasn’t found a conviction. However, someone used this event as an excuse, and they were caught on video.

I thought the point of this walkout was to say that gun-related violence was wrong. Did I miss something?

But sadly, the worst yet known is next.

Minneapolis, Minnesota – Southwest High School

A student at a Minneapolis, MN high school was assaulted by a mob of students during the walkout there, because he was carrying a flag showing his support of President Donald Trump in the event.  This took place at Southwest High School. The student, whose name has not been released, was waving his flag when he was ambushed by at least eight classmates. They took his flag and damaged a camera he was carrying.

At first it was reported that he received only minor injuries (“only!”) but later a family friend told Fox News that the student had to be taken to Urgent Care because his arm was  broken in two places by these peaceful protesters.The police reported that a school resource officer did stop the attack, but the same family friend disputed that claim, saying it was a student council leader who actually stopped the fight.

There have been no arrests yet, and police are said to still be investigating what happened. However, this walkout was Wednesday, and the source of this article released this information early Saturday morning. How long does an investigation of this kind of thing actually take, folks?

The officials at the Minneapolis Public Schools (MPS) claim that according to state law they are prohibited from sharing details of this incident.While a spokesman for the MPS, Dirk Tedmon, stated that students have a right to express their opinions even when others do not agree with them, it seems that this dignity went unregarded in many places that day.

This is of course, not really new. But there are several kernels of real truth that a sane community would take into account.

First, kids are not in school to be politically indoctrinated. While schools do serve a purpose in socialization, in the past they did so with an eye to liberties granted under the American Constitution. We were taught to value our freedom, and we were also taught to respect the right of everyone around us to disagree with us. That is a far cry from being turned into a gun-control zombie just because it is politically correct to do so.

Second, the age of adulthood in most states is 18. This age is a benchmark that is established as the age where personal responsibility entirely falls upon each citizen of the United States of America. Before that age, a person is a “minor”, and does not really have a right to demonstrate, and certainly no right to walk out of classes and disrupt schools. Every school district and every school that sanctioned this event committed a grave error in giving a bunch of wild animals the right to be wild as possible in this way. The Walmart video clips give good visual testimony to that. Many of those kids are ones that come from “good families” and yet, this was basically a license for hooliganism on a massive scale. What kind of self-restraint does this teach?

Third, the nature and scope of this event reveals that it is not an event that mere high-school students can orchestrate. There was a major support network in place, and I would personally opine that this network was driven by liberal activists who care very little about the actual Parkland Massacre or its victims, save that they are a very effective platform from which to launch a political agenda. Remember Rahm Emmanuel’s statement, “Never let a good crisis go to waste?” Well, here you go.
The most shameful thing about this is that political activism, most particularly when it gets violent like this, is absolutely disrespectful to the memory of the kids who died and to the families who are bereaved and in unbelievable personal pain from this and other incidents.

One can be sure that the souls of those 17 kids and others like them are ashamed of the actions of these people who have hijacked their good memories for selfish ends. There are no words to adequately describe how reprehensible this has become.

US training Syria militants for false flag chemical attack as basis for airstrikes – Russian MoD

RT | Mar 17, 2018

Russia’s Defense Ministry says “US instructors” are training militants to stage false flag chemical attacks in south Syria. The incidents are said to be a pretext for airstrikes on Syrian government troops and infrastructure.

“We have reliable information at our disposal that US instructors have trained a number of militant groups in the vicinity of the town of At-Tanf, to stage provocations involving chemical warfare agents in southern Syria,” Russian General Staff spokesman General Sergey Rudskoy said at a news briefing on Saturday.

“Early in March, the saboteur groups were deployed to the southern de-escalation zone to the city of Deraa, where the units of the so-called Free Syrian Army are stationed.”

The planned provocations will be widely covered in the Western media and will ultimately be used as a pretext by the US-led coalition to launch strikes on Syria, Rudskoy warned.

“The provocations will be used as a pretext by the United States and its allies to launch strikes on military and government infrastructure in Syria,” the official stated.

“We’re registering the signs of the preparations for the possible strikes. Strike groups of the cruise missile carriers have been formed in the east of the Mediterranean Sea, Persian Gulf and Red Sea.”

Comment: Crossing this threshold is nothing for the psychopaths in power as it is well known they create their own reality. The question to ask is how long will Russia allow this to continue.


Moscow expels 23 UK diplomats & shuts British Council in retaliation as spy row deepens

RT | Mar 17, 2018

The Russian Foreign Ministry said 23 UK diplomats must leave Russia in response to Britain’s “provocative actions and groundless accusations” over ex-double agent Sergei Skripal’s poisoning. The British Council will also be shut.

Friday, March 16, 2018

Vegans may be at risk for iodine deficiency, according to new study

Natural News | Mar 16, 2018 | Isabelle Z.

Giving up entire categories of food can be a good idea from a health standpoint, but it’s important to be smart about it. You can certainly give up soda or sweets without missing out on anything your body needs, but it’s a different story when it comes to other food groups. For example, most people realize that they need to seek other sources of protein when they give up meat. Now, vegan diets are in the spotlight after a Norwegian study found that many people who choose this way of eating aren’t getting enough iodine.

In a study that looked at the iodine status of various Norwegian population groups, researchers studied nearly 300 people across a wide range of ages. Their group included 44 vegetarians, 19 of whom were also vegans.

The study’s participants were asked to complete food diaries, which were then assessed by researchers to calculate the iodine content of the foods and beverages consumed. They also reported any iodine intake they happened to be getting from supplements.

In addition to totaling participants’ iodine intake based on the information provided by their food diaries, the researchers measured their urinary iodine concentrations and correlated them using the figures calculated from the food dairies.

They found that vegans had the lowest probability of sufficient iodine intake from both food and supplements at 14 percent. Children, on the other hand, were the group with the highest likelihood of getting enough iodine. All of the groups except for vegans got most of their iodine (up to 60 percent) from milk and yogurt, while the vegans mainly got it from supplements.

Why do you need iodine?

Iodine is essential for biological functions like growth, development and metabolism. Those with iodine deficiencies can end up with thyroid nodules, goiters, thyroid cancer, menstrual problems, and headaches. Children and pregnant women are particularly vulnerable; pregnant women who do not get sufficient dietary iodine could give birth to children who have lower intelligence levels.

The recommended daily allowance of iodine in the United States is 150 micrograms for adults, 220 micrograms for pregnant women, and 290 micrograms for those who are breastfeeding.

Iodine is found in foods like milk, fish, and certain cheeses, all of which are not consumed on a vegan diet. Vegans can get iodine from sources like Swiss chard, spinach, asparagus, turnips, and kelp. Smaller amounts of the mineral can also be found in walnuts, brown rice, almonds and lima beans. Iodized salt is not considered a good course of iodine because it has poor bioavailability, which means your body cannot fully absorb it.

Unfortunately, it is possible to take too much iodine, so it’s important to be careful that you don’t overcompensate with supplements. In the Norwegian study, 12 people were found to be taking excessive amounts of iodine, and the three people whose levels were the highest were all taking kelp supplements.

If you do choose seaweed supplements, in addition to ensuring you don’t overdo it, you should also be sure you get them from a trusted source as many of the commercial varieties are contaminated.

Symptoms of excessive iodine include stomach pain, diarrhea, a metallic taste, headache, runny nose and nausea.

Iodine deficiency surprisingly common

It’s not just vegans who aren’t getting enough iodine; according to the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, more than half of the population does not get sufficient levels of iodine. In addition to poor diets, it’s also being blamed on farming practices that deplete iodine and other minerals from the soil. In addition, toxic chemical exposure can hurt your body’s ability to absorb it. The mineral is essential for a healthy immune system and has anticancer properties, so it’s important to make sure your intake is within an acceptable range.

See for more headlines on iodine.

Sources for this article include:

Skripal case: Of a type developed by liars

SOTT | Mar 16, 2018 | Craig Murray

Craig Murray - I have now received confirmation from a well placed FCO source that Porton Down scientists are not able to identify the nerve gas as being of Russian manufacture, and have been resentful of the pressure being placed on them to do so. Porton Down would only sign up to the formulation "of a type developed by Russia" after a rather difficult meeting where this was agreed as a compromise formulation. The Russians were allegedly researching, in the "Novichok" programme a generation of nerve agents which could be produced from commercially available precursors such as insecticides and fertilisers. This substance is a "novichok" in that sense. It is of that type. Just as I am typing on a laptop of a type developed by the United States, though this one was made in China.

To anybody with a Whitehall background this has been obvious for several days. The government has never said the nerve agent was made in Russia, or that it can only be made in Russia. The exact formulation "of a type developed by Russia" was used by Theresa May in parliament, used by the UK at the UN Security Council, used by Boris Johnson on the BBC yesterday and, most tellingly of all, "of a type developed by Russia" is the precise phrase used in the joint communique issued by the UK, USA, France and Germany yesterday:
This use of a military-grade nerve agent, of a type developed by Russia, constitutes the first offensive use of a nerve agent in Europe since the Second World War.
When the same extremely careful phrasing is never deviated from, you know it is the result of a very delicate Whitehall compromise. My FCO source, like me, remembers the extreme pressure put on FCO staff and other civil servants to sign off the dirty dossier on Iraqi WMD, some of which pressure I recount in my memoir Murder in Samarkand. She volunteered the comparison to what is happening now, particularly at Porton Down, with no prompting from me.

Separately I have written to the media office at OPCW to ask them to confirm that there has never been any physical evidence of the existence of Russian Novichoks, and the programme of inspection and destruction of Russian chemical weapons was completed last year.

Did you know these interesting facts?

OPCW inspectors have had full access to all known Russian chemical weapons facilities for over a decade - including those identified by the "Novichok" alleged whistleblower Mirzayanov - and last year OPCW inspectors completed the destruction of the last of 40,000 tonnes of Russian chemical weapons.

By contrast the programme of destruction of US chemical weapons stocks still has five years to run.

Israel has extensive stocks of chemical weapons but has always refused to declare any of them to the OPCW. Israel is not a state party to the Chemical Weapons Convention nor a member of the OPCW. Israel signed in 1993 but refused to ratify as this would mean inspection and destruction of its chemical weapons. Israel undoubtedly has as much technical capacity as any state to synthesise "Novichoks".

Until this week, the near universal belief among chemical weapons experts, and the official position of the OPCW, was that "Novichoks" were at most a theoretical research programme which the Russians had never succeeded in actually synthesising and manufacturing. That is why they are not on the OPCW list of banned chemical weapons.

Porton Down is still not certain it is the Russians who have apparently synthesised a "Novichok". Hence "Of a type developed by Russia". Note developed, not made, produced or manufactured.

It is very carefully worded propaganda. Of a type developed by liars.


This post prompted another old colleague to get in touch. On the bright side, the FCO have persuaded Boris he has to let the OPCW investigate a sample. But not just yet. The expectation is the inquiry committee will be chaired by a Chinese delegate. The Boris plan is to get the OPCW also to sign up to the "as developed by Russia" formula, and diplomacy to this end is being undertaken in Beijing right now.

I don't suppose there is any sign of the BBC doing any actual journalism on this?

Also see:

WMD Lies Strike Again: The Skripal Incident

Land Destroyer | Mar 16, 2018 | Tony Cartalucci

As the West rallies around recent allegations by the UK against Russia regarding the alleged poisoning of former Russian military intelligence officer-turned British spy - Sergei Skripal - it is crucial to point out the alarming lack of actual evidence involved.

 It is also important to point out the history of the accusers predicating entire wars on allegations now confirmed to have been intentional lies.

The Skripal Incident

The alleged poisoning of Sergei Skripal in Salisbury, UK on March 4 led to a lighting-fast escalation with Russia. Not even two weeks after the attack, UK Prime Minister Theresa May declared a deadline for Russia to provide an "explanation" for the incident the UK had squarely blamed on Moscow.

The Kremlin's explanation was simple - it had nothing to do with the attack. Russia also offered to aid in the investigation, requesting samples of the poison used in the alleged attack.

However, the UK failed to produce any samples of the alleged poison - a Soviet-era nerve agent known as Novichok - either to the Russians to examine or to relevant international organizations as required under the Chemical Weapons Convention.

The UK also failed to explain why Russia would have carried out such an attack - or how the UK could have confirmed the use of Novichok agents without first possessing samples of the agents themselves. If the UK possessed Novichok agents to compare samples taken from the attack with, the entire rationale of accusing Russia because it is supposedly the only nation in possession of the agents is revealed as entirely false.

US, UK Certainly Have "Novichoks" 

The Daily Beast in its article, "Soviet Scientist Who Developed Novichok Poison Used on Sergei Skripal: ‘I’m Sorry’," would admit:

For the prime minister to be able to publicly accuse the Russians of using a nerve agent like a novichok, British authorities at least must have had access to novichok’s unique chemical signature—which it legally could have had despite the Chemical Weapons Convention, due to the clause of countries being able to hold samples for testing in these incidences. 

Testing for novichoks, even based on a formula published by Mirzayanov in a memoir based on his work in the 1980s, is a potential sign that the British have potential access to newer variants of the nerve agent.
The Guardian too would admit in an article titled, "Novichok nerve agents – what are they?," that:
The fact that so little is known about the novichoks may explain why Porton Down scientists took several days to identify the compound used in the attack against the Skripals. And while the agents were invented in the Soviet Union, other labs with access to the chemical structures would be able to manufacture them too.
The fact that the alleged creator of Novichok agents - Vil Mirzayanov - fled to and currently lives in the United States suggests the West has both knowledge of and the means to create Novichok agents themselves.

The UK's presumption that "only Russia" could have produced the agents when the creator of Novichok lives in the United States - and British labs clearly have access to the poison - is at face value contradictory and dishonest.

Since the UK has refused to produce any tangible evidence, including producing samples under its obligations to the Chemical Weapons Convention, all that is left for the international community to consider is the source of these accusations.

Consider the Source: The West Has a Sordid History of WMD Lies 

In the lead up to the 2003 US-led invasion of Iraq, the Western media sold the global public tales of "weapons of mass destruction" (WMDs).

Then US Secretary of State Colin Powell sat before the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) presenting fabricated evidence to the world in an effort to build a case for the upcoming US invasion.

Powell would claim (emphasis added):

We know that Saddam Hussein is determined to keep his weapons of mass destruction; he's determined to make more. Given Saddam Hussein's history of aggression, given what we know of his grandiose plans, given what we know of his terrorist associations and given his determination to exact revenge on those who oppose him, should we take the risk that he will not some day use these weapons at a time and the place and in the manner of his choosing at a time when the world is in a much weaker position to respond?
Yet upon the US invasion and subsequent occupation of Iraq, none of these supposed weapons of mass destruction were found. Eventually the US and UK incrementally began admitting to fabricating evidence, "sexing up" dossiers, intentionally citing unreliable sources, and misleading their allies and the world.

Former UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown would accuse the US of intentionally misleading the UK. In a Guardian article titled, "Gordon Brown says Pentagon misled UK over case for Iraq invasion," it's admitted that:

The US defence department knew that Saddam Hussein did not have weapons of mass destruction but kept Britain in the dark, according to an explosive new claim from Gordon Brown. 
In an extraordinary allegation, the former prime minister states that a secret US intelligence report into Iraq’s military capabilities was never passed to Britain and could have changed the course of events. The revelation leads Brown to conclude that the “war could not be justified as a last resort and invasion cannot now be seen as a proportionate response”.

Other reports attempted to claim the US itself was "duped" by unreliable intelligence sources. The UK Independent in an article titled, "Curveball: How US was duped by Iraqi fantasist looking to topple Saddam," would claim:
As US secretary of state, Colin Powell gathered his notes in front of the United Nations security council, the man watching — Rafid Ahmed Alwan al-Janabi, known to the west's intelligence services as "Curveball" — had more than an inkling of what was to come. He was, after all, Powell's main source...
Everything he had said about the inner workings of Saddam Hussein's biological weapons programme was a flight of fantasy - one that, he now claims was aimed at ousting the Iraqi dictator. 
The Independent - however - stretches credibility by claiming al-Janabi "duped" the US. The same Independent article would admit that al-Janabi was never even in contact with the US directly despite the US basing its entire UNSC presentation on his claims. The lack of due diligence in confirming al-Janabi's admitted lies doesn't suggest a concerted attempt on Washington's part to ascertain the truth, but a cynical and intentional attempt to conceal it.

The US simply found whatever source it could to bolster otherwise baseless accusations to justify an otherwise unjustifiable war it had already long-ago elected to wage.

In hindsight, even then US President George Bush admitted there were no weapons of mass destruction. President Bush attempted to blame faulty intelligence, but as the Powell-al-Janabi connection - or rather - disconnection reveals, there was never any intelligence to begin with - simply fabricated lies.

Who Will Play Powell, Bush, and "Curveball" This Time? 

This brings us back to the Skripal incident. The accusations of the British government already aren't adding up. Considering the lack of actual evidence the UK has provided and the British government's verified history of fabricating claims regarding the use of WMDs to advance it and its allies' geopolitical agendas - the burden of proof never rested upon Russia.

 Just as the US and UK did during the lead up to the Iraq War in 2003, an avalanche of propaganda is being produced to stampede the world into backing whatever long-ago elected course of action the West has decided to take against Russia.

In the hindsight of whatever course of action the UK and its allies decide to take in the coming days, weeks, and months based on the Skripal incident, who will play the role of "Curveball" who supposedly duped Theresa May in making her Powell-style accusations before declaring her Bush-style retaliation?

And considering the ramifications for the West regarding its lies in the lead up to Iraq and the fallout the West has faced in the aftermath of Iraq's destruction, what do Western policymakers expect to gain from an incident many times more transparently staged and self-serving against a world increasingly skeptical of their claims and actions?

Still, the accusations are serious and the prepared responses from the West will assuredly further endanger global peace and stability. That the alleged attack took place on British soil means that - unlike in Syria - there is no UNSC the West must pass through before taking matters into its own hands.

This fact alone - following years of frustration in the face of Russia's veto power upon the UNSC in regards to Syria - makes the nature of the Skripal incident even more suspicious. The UK appears to have a pretext and a clear path toward escalation before it - how far it and its allies are prepared to go remains to be seen.

Tony Cartalucci, Bangkok-based geopolitical researcher and writer, especially for the online magazine New Eastern Outlook”.