Posts Tagged ‘Newspaper’


A scribbled note by Albert Einstein which described his theory on the key to happy living was sold at auction in Jerusalem for $1.56m.

According to The Telegraph, the winning bid for the note far exceeded the pre-auction estimate of between $5,000 and $8,000, according to the website of Winner’s auction house.

“It was an all-time record for an auction of a document in Israel,” Winner’s spokesman Meni Chadad told AFP…Bidding in person, online and by phone, started at $2,000. A flurry of offers pushed the price rapidly up for about 20 minutes until the final two potential buyers bid against each other by phone. Applause broke out in the room when the sale was announced.

The newspaper reports that Einstein was on a lecture tour of Japan in 1922 and had recently been awarded the Nobel prize. Einstein didn’t have cash to pay a tip to a bellboy in the Imperial Hotel in Tokyo, so he gave him two notes, predicting they would be worth more than a tip. He is reported have said.

“Maybe if you’re lucky those notes will become much more valuable than just a regular tip.”

The Telegraph continues, Einstein dedicated his life to science, but suggested in the notes that fulfilling a long-term ambition doesn’t necessarily guarantee happiness.

The note said.

“A quiet and modest life brings more joy than a pursuit of success bound with constant unrest.”

The anonymous buyer was from Europe.

The notes were sold by an anonymous Hamburg resident who commented “I am really happy that there are people out there who are still interested in science and history and timeless deliveries in a world which is developing so fast.”

On the second note was written “where there’s a will, there’s a way”. It sold for $240,000.




A major international police operation to bust child predators involved police sharing child pornography with over a million unsuspecting online subscribers for a year after investigators took control of the dark web’s largest child abuse forum. Though hundreds of pedophiles were arrested after the site was shut down, the police sting involved undercover officers sharing extremely disturbing content and encouraging followers to engage in sexual acts with children. But police say it was worth it.

A new report reveals that Australian police were running the largest pedophile and child pornography forum on the internet for a year as part of a joint initiative between Australian, European, and Canadian police as well as the US Department of Homeland Security to track down the site’s administrators and child porn producers. Over the weekend the Norwegian newspaper VG published its bombshell investigation which confirmed that between October 2016 and September 2017 a special police task force based in Queensland, Australia was able to quietly hack the site “Childs Play” which had reached over a million registered accounts and had thousands of active users.

Queensland police at Taskforce Argos, including investigator Paul Griffiths (pictured). Image source:

The task force was able to identify the site’s top tier administrators, leading to hundreds of international arrests and criminal investigations, but not before crossing what critics see as a significant ethical line: to expose those behind the site, police themselves posted child pornography and facilitated what was essentially a pedophile online meet-up.

The site has existed since April 2016 on the dark web, which made it next to impossible to identify users and administrators as the dark web operates based on layers of encryption which ensures complete anonymity. Not only did the forum include over one hundred active producers of child pornography who would daily post videos and images, but even more disturbingly involved a smaller inner circle who shared child torture videos.

Among this inner circle were Childs Play administrators ‘Warhead’ and ‘Crazymonk’ – later revealed to be 26-year old Canadian Benjamin Faulkner and 27-year old Tennessee native Patrick Falte, according the VG report. Both had previously worked as internet security professionals and were active technical support providers for pedophilia related internet sites – the two had initially met, for example, through a website called the the “Pedo Support Community.” The Australian child abuse task force had begun tracking the two by assembling profiles of their previous digital footprints in relation to child abuse related chat on the open web.

Source: Norway’s VG

Faulkner (Warhead) for example, had in 2012 posted the following to a chat forum under his previous online identity, CuriousVendetta:

A little about myself to establish credibility here: My name is CuriousVendetta, and I work as a JR forensics consultant and penetration tester for an IT security firm. On the side, I do what I can to cause general mischief on the internet with a few friends of mine…

At the pool is where I am free, and where I can generate my fantasies. I have more girls in my ‘fan club’ than I can even count.

Faulkner was working as a youth swimming instructor in the small Canadian city of North Bay in Ontario and though it appears some parents had become suspicious of his proclivities, no police reports were ever filed. Patrick Falte had lived all his life with his parents a half an hour outside of Nashville and was the more advanced technical expert of the two. Both Warhead and Crazymonk as administrators of the Childs Play dark web forum had promised subscribers increased security measures. For example users knew that should

Warhead, the site’s leader, ever miss one of his routine postings to the community which involved a message stamped with a pornographic image, it would be a signal that the community had been infiltrated by police.

But police did infiltrate the community and took it over, partly due to mistakes made by the administrators. The forum transacted in Bitcoin – common for the dark web – but Crazymonk had his bitcoin wallet linked to his personal email address, making it easy for the US Department of Homeland Security to locate him. Other mistakes which helped police included both site leaders posting identifying information in various on the open web which helped investigators build profiles for the two. From there police not only began monitoring the pair – even installing tracking devices on their vehicles – but were also able to observe all communications and postings on the site through a backdoor. It was soon understood that the two would occasionally drive for over 10 hours to meet multiple times a year. After months of monitoring, the two met in person at a usual spot

in Manassas, Virginia, where one of Childs Play’s users had regularly offered the men his 4-year old daughter to rape while being video taped.

It was in Manassas that US federal agents finally made the arrest, but only after the 4-year old had already been raped in a Virginia home. Authorities told VG that they had no way of knowing of the rape beforehand, citing online messaging as not indicative of that information. The video tape would later be used to convict Faulkner and Falte, who were given life sentences for both the rape and running the site. After the arrests, the Australian task force, known as Argos, then moved in to assume the identities of the arrested site administrators. Investigators studied the pair’s online language styles and characteristics, eventually posting an admin message so that users wouldn’t get suspicious, which of course required the child pornography image stamp.

The site’s server was located in Australia, which was important to the international investigation as Australian law gives police broad leeway to commit crimes in

pursuit of investigations, especially in relation to catching child pornographers. Task force Argo’s officers not only uploaded the image, thereby convincing subscribers that nothing was wrong, but according to VG issued the following message to the community:

“I hope that some of you were able to give a special present to the little ones in your lives, and spend some time with them. It’s a great time of year to snuggle up near a fire, and make some memories.”

Police, while running the site, also continued to share images and videos while undergoing their year-long investigation which identified numerous video producers as well as consumers of the content. For example the task force posted a video of an eight-year-old girl being raped only two weeks after taking over the forum, which was viewed 770,617 times, according to the report. Such extreme police tactics, which authorities argue was necessary to rescue victims and put predators behind bars, have outraged some of the victims’ families.

VG reporters were able to speak to a mother of one the victims whose video was used by police as part of the operation: “My daughter

should not be used as a bait… It is not right for the police to promote these images,” she said. But police investigators told VG in response to criticism that, “There is definitely a balance between what we want to achieve and how we go about it.” And added, “Eventually we get to the point where it isn’t worth running the forum any more. But as long as we’re identifying victims, producers and abusers, we will keep running it.”

A similar investigation by the FBI in 2015 of a site significantly smaller than Child’s Play’s size made 870 arrests and rescued 259 children after agents kept it online for just two weeks. The FBI came under fire for actively sharing, promoting and facilitating the transfer of thousands of images and videos. But the Australian task force ran a site which was over five times the size and content volume for close to a year.


Confirming, and sending the clearest sign of his previously discussed pivot toward Russia and away from NATO and the West, on Tuesday President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced that Turkey had signed a deal to purchase a Russian surface-to-air missile system, and paid the first installment. The deal cements Turkey’s recent rapprochement with Russia, despite differences over the war in Syria, the downing of a Russian fighter jet over Turkey in late 2015 and the assassination of a Russian ambassador earlier this year, and comes as Turkey’s ties with the United States and European Union have become strained to the point of breaking.

Although the missile purchase from Russia was made public several months ago, Erdogan’s announcement was the first confirmation that Turkey had transferred money to pay for the S-400 missile system.

“Signatures have been made for the purchase of S-400s from Russia,” Erdogan said in comments published in several newspapers on Tuesday. “A deposit has also been paid as far as I know.”

As the NYT writes, “the purchase of the missile system flies in the face of cooperation within the NATO alliance, which Turkey has belonged to since the early 1950s. NATO does not ban purchases of military hardware from manufacturers outside the American-led alliance, but it does discourage members from buying equipment not compatible with that used by other members.”

According to reports in the Russian media, Turkey is to get four batteries of S-400 launchers complete with targeting radar and control posts. Some aspects of the deal are reportedly to be finalized, but Russian officials said the contract furthers Russia’s geostrategic interests.

* * *

Predictably, the Pentagon promptly reiterated its concerns over the deal, which it said undermines inter-operability of weapons systems among NATO allies. “We have relayed our concerns to Turkish officials regarding the potential purchase of the S-400. A NATO inter-operable missile defense system remains the best option to defend Turkey from the full range of threats in its region,” spokesman Johnny Michael said in a statement.

A NATO official in Brussels where the alliance is headquartered, said that no NATO member currently operates the Russian missile system and that the alliance had not been informed about the details of the purchase by Turkey. “What matters for NATO is that the equipment allies acquire is able to operate together,” the official said, speaking on the condition of anonymity as required by alliance procedures. “Interoperability of allied armed forces is essential to NATO for the conduct of our operations.”

However, on Wednesday Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan slammed the critics of Turkey’s deal with Russia, saying Ankara had no intention of waiting for the protection of its NATO allies.

“They have gone crazy because we made a deal for S-400s,” Erdogan said Wednesday in a speech to the ruling AKP mayors in Ankara, as cited by Hurriyet.

“What do you expect? Should we wait for you? We take care of ourselves in every security point. We are taking precautions and we will continue to do so,” the Turkish leader said.

Erdogan criticized the reluctance of US and Israel to authorize supply of combat drones to Turkey as another example of how Turkish security was sidelined by its allies.

“When they did give [drones], their repair and maintenance put us in a difficult position. Now [Turkey] has come to a point where it can produce its own unmanned, armed air vehicles. And now they are uncomfortable with that,” Erdogan added.

Erdogan also dismissed issues of interoperability, brand loyalties or the geopolitical optics of such a sale. “Nobody has the right to discuss the Turkish republic’s independence principles

or independent decisions about its defense industry,” the daily newspaper Hurriyet reported him as saying.

“We make the decisions about our own independence ourselves,” he said. “We are obliged to take safety and security measures in order to defend our country.”

As the NYT adds, Erdogan’s announcement — made to Turkish journalists aboard his presidential jet as he returned from Kazakhstan — appeared timed as a response to two judicial cases announced last week in the United States. One is against his presidential bodyguards, who are charged with assaulting protesters when Mr. Erdogan visited Washington this year. The other is against a group of Turks, including a former minister, accused of breaking United States sanctions against Iran. Erdogan has angrily criticized both cases.

* * *

The S-400 SAM is designed to detect, track and then destroy aircraft, drones or missiles. It’s Russia’s most advanced integrated air defense system, and can hit targets as far as 250 miles away. Russia has also agreed to sell them to China and India, both nations who are masters at reverse engineering. Most concerning for NATO, however is that the systems delivered to Turkey would not have a friend-or-foe identification system, which means they could be deployed against any threat without restriction.

Turkey has been weighing options for acquiring long-range SAMs for years. In 2013, Ankara surprised other NATO members by announcing that it was going to purchase the FD-2000 system from China, sparking criticism from Washington. Defense observers speculated that Turkey played the China card to put pressure on its allies and get better terms for buying a NATO-compatible SAM system, such as the US-made Patriot PAC-3. The Chinese deal stalled and was eventually scrapped, with Turkey reportedly unhappy over Beijing’s reluctance to hand over the technology behind the advanced system. Last year Ankara announced that it was in talks with Russia over a potential purchase of the S-400.

Turkey has other reasons for the missile purchase. It needs to cultivate good relations with Russia, and it also needs to build its own military defense, said Asli Aydintasbas, a fellow at the European Council on Foreign Relations. “Turkey wants the deal,” she said, “and Russia is only too happy to drive a wedge into the NATO alliance.”

While NATO’s collective defense should have been sufficient for Turkey – NATO deployed Patriot missiles there during a rise of tensions with Syria in the past – Erdogan lost trust in the West since last year’s failed “coup attempt”, which he slammed repeatedly as a Western plot to oust him, and appears determined to secure his own defense.

Furthermore, the transfer of technology from Russia is attractive to Turkey: Erdogan has spoken also of his frustration at having requests to the United States for drones turned down, and of his satisfaction that Turkey developed its own.

Notably, Erdogan’s announcement of the deal with Russia came after Germany said that it was suspending all major arms exports to Turkey because of the deteriorating human rights situation in the country and the increasingly strained ties. “We have put on hold all big requests that Turkey sent to us, and these are really not a few,” the German foreign minister, Sigmar Gabriel, said during a panel discussion in Berlin on Monday, according to Reuters.

While the purchase of Russian missiles will take cooperation between the two nations to a new level, but is not the first time that Turkey has bought military equipment from Russia. It turned to Moscow in the early 1990s to buy military helicopters and armored personnel carriers. Last year, Russia and Turkey reached an agreement to revive a suspended natural-gas pipeline project.

Meanwhile, as the US military-industrial complex has flourished in recent months following a spike in deals with Saudi Arabia, South Korea and other nations courtesy of rising geopolitical tensions, Russia has remained largely squeezed out of the arms market in Western and Eastern Europe, even in countries that once bought nearly all their weapons from the Soviet Union, has looked for years to NATO’S eastern flank as a promising market and the alliance’s weakest link. It has also sold weapons to Greece, another NATO member and to Cyprus, which is not a member of NATO but houses British military bases and effectively serves as an outpost of the alliance.

Meanwhile, as Turkey’s suspicions toward the West have grown, relations with Russia warmed, driven by the personal relationship between Erdogan and Vladimir Putin. Erdogan has expressed personal admiration for Putin, to the consternation of many European and American leaders, if not President Trump. Erdogan has also shown a preference for the Russian model, with its sense of restoring a lost empire, returning Turkey to a more independent place in the world and rejecting Western democracy.

At the same time, the fact that Turkey belongs to NATO has only increased Mr. Putin’s desire to forge strong relations with Mr. Erdogan despite their differences over the conflict in Syria.

Mr. Putin and myself are determined on this issue,” Erdogan told journalists about the missile deal.

Following Friday’s accusation by US “intelligence services” that Russia was behind the hacking of US political organizations – which took place just minutes before the first Wikileaks data dump of John Podesta emails – even though the US government did not directly accuse Putin of being the party responsible, today curious journalists demanded more information from White House spokesman Josh Earnest after Monday’s holiday.

What he told them is that, according to Reuters, Barack Obama will consider a variety of responses to Russia’s hacking of political party organizations and it is possible that any action may not be announced publicly, the White House said on Tuesday.

“There are a range of responses that are available to the president and he will consider a response that is proportional,” White House spokesman Josh Earnest told reporters on Air Force One. “It is certainly possible that the president can choose response options that we never announce,” he said.

In other words, the US very well could – and will – do nothing, especially if as the lack of public evidence indicates, the Russian government, which has laughed the whole thing off,  was not in any way responsible.

Meanwhile, over in the UK, ministers have been banned from wearing Apple Watches during Cabinet meetings amid concerns they could be used by Russian spies as listening devices. According to the Telegraph, Theresa May’s government has barred the watch over concerns its microphone could be hacked by spies who would be able to listen in to high-level policy discussions.

“The Russians are trying to hack everything,” one source told the newspaper.

Russia’s Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova took a humorous approach to the latest McCarthyian witch hunt.

“Apple Watch, easy. It is strange that the Daily Telegraph do not know that ‘Russian secret agents’ can hack Breguet even better,” she wrote on Facebook according to RT, referring to a Swiss manufacturer of luxury watches.

Under former Prime Minister David Cameron, several cabinet ministers wore the watches, including Justice Secretary Michael Gove. Gove reportedly interrupted one meeting by inadvertently playing a Beyonce song. Sarah Vine, his wife, said he had been “surreptitiously checking his emails,” but pressed the wrong button when a message came through.

“So the cabinet was treated to the first few bars of a song from Beyonce,” she said. Mobile phones have previously been barred from the Cabinet because of similar concerns.

The Apple Watch has also been banned from Australian cabinet meetings.

Territorial disputes are a delicate thing… and potentially deadly as well.

That’s why the U.S. is backing up its positions with an ever-increasing presence of warships  in the South China Sea.

China is very touchy about these territories, and unwilling to give up what they perceive as their waters, even as a UN tribunal just denied their claims and strengthened the U.S. hand.

Indeed, the entire situation is combustible and very dangerous.

As James Holbrooks of the Underground Reporter noted:

 In a congressional hearing on Wednesday, former Director of National Intelligence and retired Navy admiral Dennis Blair told the panel that the United States should be prepared to use military force to oppose Chinese aggression in the South China Sea.

“I think we need to have some specific lines and then encourage China to compromise on some of its objectives,” Blair, who headed the U.S. Pacific Command while in the Navy, said at the hearing.

The admiral’s recommendation came the day after a United Nations tribunal invalidated China’s claim of territorial rights to nearly all of the waters in the South China Sea.

The U.S., citing the territorial dispute and security concerns raised by its allies in the region, have for months been sending warships into the South China Sea as a check against Chinese hostility.

Beijing, acutely aware of the military buildup off its coast, has publicly warned the U.S. it’s more than ready to defend against provocations. “China hopes disputes can be resolved by talks… but it must be prepared for any military confrontation.”

It seems that the situation is being deliberately stoked into conflict, and that tensions are programmed to reach a boiling over point. If true, there is no indication of where the point of no return would be.

The U.S. has the excuse of protecting its ally, and former territory, the Philippines, and thus has a pretext to play policeman in the region.

But in turn, that is only a thinly-veiled ruse to amplify the military pressure, and let bloated speech and menacing saber-rattling episodes set the tone for ‘diplomacy’ with the Red Dragon.

Now, there is not only an escalation, but an acknowledgement on both sides of the Pacific that things are headed towards war – and it is being openly discussed in those stark terms:

  “If our security is being threatened, of course we have the right to demarcate a zone,” Vice Foreign Minister Liu Zhenmin said Wednesday at a briefing in Beijing. “We hope that other countries will not take this opportunity to threaten China and work with China to protect the peace and stability of the South China Sea, and not let it become the origin of a war.”

And war, it appears, is becoming increasingly likely by the day — with other countries in Southeast Asia beginning to take sides.


So, with the U.S. demanding compromise from a China who refuses to bow down — and forcing local powers to choose sides in the process — it seems the stage is being set for a potential military conflict in the South China Sea that could engulf the entire region.

Are we really to expect a looming world war from China, who has played the parts of villain, ally, trade partner and rival all at the same time?

No one can say, but there is plenty of worry that war could really happen. Even billionaire George Soros warned that the potential danger of WWIII breaking out with China was ‘not an exaggeration’:

 The US government has little to gain and much to lose by treating the relationship with China as a zero-sum game. In other words it has little bargaining power. It could, of course, obstruct China’s progress, but that would be very dangerous. President Xi Jinping has taken personal responsibility for the economy and national security. If his market-oriented reforms fail, he may foster some external conflicts to keep the country united and maintain himself in power. This could lead China to align itself with Russia not only financially but also politically and militarily. In that case, should the external conflict escalate into a military confrontation with an ally of the United States such as Japan, it is not an exaggeration to say that we would be on the threshold of a third world war.

And yet, President Obama and numerous other U.S. officials have been deliberately stoking the tension and adding fuel to the fire with provocation in the disputed waters.

As Michael Snyder wrote several months ago:

 Barack Obama sent a guided missile destroyer into disputed waters in the South China Sea to see if the Chinese would start shooting at it. Yes, this is what he actually did. Fortunately for us, the Chinese backed down and did not follow through on their threats to take military action. Instead, the Chinese have chosen to respond with very angry words. The Chinese ambassador to the United States, Cui Tiankai, says that what Obama did was “a very serious provocation, politically and militarily.” And as you will see below, a state-run newspaper stated that China “is not frightened to fight a war with the US in the region”. So why in the world would Obama provoke the Chinese like this? Yes, the Chinese claims in the South China Sea are questionable. But there are other ways to resolve things like this.

Most Americans assume that an actual shooting war between the United States and China is not even within the realm of possibility, but many of our leaders see things very differently. For instance, just check out what CIA Deputy Director Michael Morell thinks…

The current posturing in the area has led to heightened tensions between the world’s preeminent military powers, and in May Former CIA Deputy Director Michael Morell told CNN that the confrontation indicates there is “absolutely” a risk of the U.S. and China going to war sometime in the future.

Not long ago, the U.S. also demonstrated ballistic missiles – armed with nuclear warheads – over the coast of California in an apparent demonstration towards China regarding the readiness and seriousness of their clash.

Though it isn’t on the front burner right now amid other sensational headlines, keep an eye to the fact that World War III is slowly being brewed on the back burner. Someday, it could ignite into a full blown nightmare. Stay vigilant. Hope for peace, prepare for war.

It seems to have become one of the most popular ways of ridiculing somebody’s argument or position, calling into question someone’s sanity or even somebody’s right to their very own existence in recent years are “You’re a conspiracy theorist!”, “That sounds like a conspiracy theory to me!”  We hear such accusations let fly in TV and radio debates all too often as soon as anyone begins to question a perceived, generally excepted “truth”.  The accuser always seems supremely confident that this accusation is enough to immediately put the accused beyond the pale of all human reason and that all participants and viewers of the debate should be expecting men in white coats to arrive at any moment and the accused to be led away in the interests of all for “corrective treatment”.

The definition of conspiracy of the on-line dictionaries insists on the “evil, harmful, bad” side of things.  In other words; in the English language, it is impossible to conspire to do good.  This is one of the reasons why the accusation of being a conspiracy theorist remains an effective put down as it implies that the accused believes that their government, company bosses and colleagues, military or police commanders, friends and acquaintances or even members of their own family and partaking in secret, evil deeds and plots for harmful ends which have happened or are going to happen and hence at best implies lack of good faith and paranoia and at worst, extreme negativity, treachery; being a fifth columnist.  All labels with which most of us would wish not to be tarnished.

Here however are some alternative definitions of “conspiracy theorist”:

  • someone who has seen through the bullshit (David Icke);
  • someone who questions the statement of known liars (unknown).

It is clearly not possible to see these definitions as morally negative unless we are creators of bullshit or known liars.

Could it be that the time has come for a reappraisal of the definition of the word conspiracy ecause the following is palpably undeniable.  Every development in politics and affairs of state, every war, every campaign within a war, every attack and counter attack, every putsch, every terrorist act, every revolution and even every democratic election manifesto and campaign, every new bill passed, every budget or construction project proposed on a national or local level ad infinitum, throughout human history has been born of human planning, plotting or conspiracy depending upon which side we were or are on or how you view the proposals!  Effected to a lesser or greater extent by chance undoubtedly and maybe borne on a current of destiny as well!  The latter I will not discuss further here.  Not because I dismiss it. Heaven forbid.  Simply it is not important for the points I want to make.  One of the most important of which is this, in short: our history is littered with and shaped from, not conspiracy theories but conspiracy facts!  One of the earliest and most famous that springs to mind is that of The Trojan Horse.   A very cunning plot by the Greeks which broke the stalemate of the long siege of Troy and enabled them to conquer and ransack the city but by the current English definition, a conspiracy only from the point of view of the Trojans as for them it was “bad and harmful” but not for the Greeks.  But who amongst us now really sees one side or the other as the “evil” one?  So was it a conspiracy or not?

A Nazi soldier gets ready to murder two Soviet Slavic women during Operation Barbarossa, summer 1941. This incident probably took place in the Ukraine or Belarus.

A Nazi soldier gets ready to murder two Soviet Slavic women during Operation Barbarossa, summer 1941. This incident probably took place in the Ukraine or Belarus.

There are times in history, usually more recent history, (examine and discuss) when there seems to have clearly been a good and evil side.  One such example I would posit is Operation Barbarossa.  Hitler’s attack on the Soviet Union!  While this was of course a life saving event for Great Britain, even the most diehard anti communist must surely see that the invasion of Nazi forces into the USSR was unequivocally bad and harmful for the peoples of that empire as it promised no liberation at all;  only abject slavery or total oblivion whatever their position in Soviet society. It was clearly planned or plotted in advance but according to the English language, it was only a conspiracy from the point of view of the peoples of the USSR and the Soviet government, not from the point of view of Nazi Germany and her allies as they perceived that attack as beneficial to them at the time which, of course, is why they contrived and went ahead with it.

What about Operation Overlord- The Normandy landings or D-Day?  This massive military undertaking was literally years in the planning or plotting.  Was it a conspiracy?  According to the current English definition, only for the rulers of Nazi Germany as it can be argued that it was actually beneficial even for most Germans not actively involved in the Nazi hierarchy as it lead to their liberation as well as to that of the other nations of western Europe.  In spite of this, the German army fought like tigers on the western front to the bitter end but I digress.  I will however be returning to the D Day landings a little later for reasons that will become clear.

Surely therefore, it is obviously undeniable that the accusation of being a conspiracy theorist is in fact totally subjective and because of that, totally spurious from an objective, truth seeking point of view concerning any, as yet, unsolved or disputed events in human history or actuality and hence it follows that those using this accusation to discredit the ideas or theories of others have an agenda for doing so.  This agenda maybe conscious or subconscious but it is always there.

The purpose of this article is neither to prove or disprove any famous conspiracy theories and, although I, like anybody else, have my own ideas and suspicions, I am not putting them forward here.   What I am putting forward here is the fact that if you hear someone publicly dismissing somebody else’s ideas as conspiracy theories and especially if the “dismisser” is a western journalist, government spokesperson or a politician they are trying to prevent you thinking about something by ridiculing you into not delving further..  The unconscious agenda of such accusers I mentioned earlier is the cognitive dissonance caused when presented with information that contradicts long held and emotionally charged beliefs. The conscious agenda is of course blatant lying in order to cover up the truth.


Let us look at a concrete example.  In Toronto Canada there is a high profile televised political discussion called the Munk Debate. Here is the link to the particular episode I’m going to concentrate on.

The motion proposed on this occasion was “Be it resolved, The West should engage, not isolate Russia”.  As you can see this motion assumes that Russia is somehow wrong and the only question is how best to deal with Russia’s wrongness.  Given this obvious slant from the beginning the pro team of Vladimir Pozner and Stephen F. Cohen did a reasonable job but were unable to fend off the barrage of 100% truth inversions (all of which conforming to the strictly controlled and censored Canadian mass media slant) from the rabid, foaming at the mouth, jumping up & down, Jihadi anti- Putin and Russia team of Anne Applebaum and Garry Kasparov.  At around the 16th minute Applebaum starts to speak about the Kremlin’s “massive” investment in their multi-language media “disinformation machine” including RT television.  At around 17.12 minutes in this recording she then states that “When Malaysian airliner MH17 was shot down by a “Russian missile” over Ukraine this media machine immediately came up with all sorts of crazy conspiracy theories such as planes taking off already full of dead people” and explains that this is done deliberately by Russia and only by Russia  in order to cloud people’s minds until “they” don’t know what to think any more.  Well!  Sure!  Planes taking off full of dead people does sound pretty crazy doesn’t it.  I couldn’t believe my ears when I first heard that one actually but let’s look more closely at what she said before coming back to that.  How many conspiracy theories does she mention?  One?  Well, I count three and a half.  The above mentioned plus two and a half  more.  The statement that Russian media is disinformation is also a conspiracy theory as is the position that they alone came up with all these conspiracy theories.  Many of them are proposed and published  by westerners.  The accusation that MH17 was shot down by a Russian missile is also a conspiracy theory as well as propaganda because all weapons at that time on both sides were either Russian made or Soviet made.  Who is using them, how and why is the pertinent question which the western media always seeks to obfuscate. And yes, well, okay, true. I admit that the last sentence I’ve just written is another conspiracy theory at least for some of you.  Are you beginning to see how deep the rabbit hole goes and how ridiculous the allegation of conspiracy theorist is under any circumstances?

Fact.  The “official” version of 9/11 is every bit as much a conspiracy theory as all the others!

Especially as it has proved impossible to prove over the years and seems indeed, ever easier to disprove.  When governments and the mainstream media tell us a version of events after a terrorist act or invasion or murder etc they then accuse anybody who voices doubts or proposes another version of events of being conspiracy theorists but the governments and main stream media are themselves conspiracy theorists until, I repeat, there emerges incontrovertible proof and evidence to confirm one of the conspiracy theories as the conspiracy fact.


Back to Applebaum’s “planes taking off full of dead people”. When I first heard that one I was literally seething at the sheer stupidity of such an insane theory being voiced almost immediately after the disaster.  At the time I was still only just emerging from an umbilically wet, comforting “womb warmth” world where our western governments were working for our best interests but were just rather incompetent at doing it.   In the immediate aftermath of that tragedy I reluctantly assumed that the self defense forces had mistaken it for a US backed Kiev bomber or that a guided missile had locked on to the airliner by error or evil destiny.  After all at the time, they were being attacked by the air-force of the US installed Kiev government everyday and, in spite of having no aircraft themselves had been increasingly successful in downing their attackers.  Then came the immediate barrage of western press headlines.   From Britain for example: The Sun:  PUTIN’S MISSILE  and PUTIN’S LOOTERS ROB BRIT VICTIM  The Daily Mail:  PUTIN’S KILLED MY SON    The Daily Mirror:  PUTIN’S VICTIMS to name but a few.   US Secretary of State John Kerry claimed that the US had proof of exactly what kind of missile was used and where it was fired from.  He stated, as reported by The Guardian, that “all the evidence surrounding the downed Malaysian airlines flight MH17 points towards pro-Russia separatists in eastern Ukraine being to blame.”    Well.  All those newspaper headlines are simply conspiracy theories and as it turns out, more insane than the dead-bodies-taking-off idea.  While Kerry’s accusations could have seemed feasible at the time, the fact that not one jot of “all that evidence” has been made public twenty two months later reduces his words to a conspiracy theory too.  The headlines are totally insane because of the lack of motive.  The fact is, after taking into account the ill fated crew and passengers of MH17 and their families, loved ones and friends there is simply not one human being on earth out of all seven billion of us who had less motive to get involved in shooting down a passenger plane anywhere in the world, let alone over Eastern Ukraine than Russian president Vladimir Putin and his government followed by The Donetsk Republic’s armed forces who were and are fighting at home, on their own land for their very existence.  In the shock of the immediate aftermath, European governments some of whom had been resisting US pressure to impose sanctions on Russia as punishment for having saved Crimea, at the behest of Crimeans, from invasion by ultra racist Ukrainian US backed rebels bent on their eradication one way or another, caved in and sanctions were imposed.  Anyone placing themselves in the position of detective would see straight away, that the new Ukrainian government had massive motive for and massive profit to gain from MH17’s downing if it could be pinned on Russia, followed by those governments who had plotted and helped the coup in Kiev -the US, UK, Dutch, Polish, Swedish and EU baron’s to name the main players.  That in itself is of course not proof that they were complicit but it would be one of the areas where any real investigation would concentrate a lot of effort and inquiry.








In the Munk Debate, broadcast on the 11th April 2015, more than eight months after the tragedy, Applebaum is careful to avoid pointing the blame specifically at Putin personally while using language that generally insinuates instead.  Could it just be that legal advice has something to do with that.  Another video, which judging by its title indicates that she “apparently” knew all the details of what happened, seems to have disappeared completely from the net:    “Anne Applebaum: MH17 attack | what happened. How it happened and who was responsible.”  If anybody saw it or has a transcript it would be great to know what she actually said here.

Meanwhile as more and more theories as to how this tragedy occurred were coming forth , spurred on by the lack of any evidence being made public, including the content of the black boxes, some aspects of the plane full of already dead people theory were beginning to seem, well, just slightly less insane.  On March 8th 2014 Malaysian airlines flight MH370 disappeared on route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing.  It’s fate remains a mystery to this day.   Such a story is the very oxygen of conspiracy theorists, some well intentioned and some undoubtedly less so and the internet and You Tube is not lacking in explanations.  Many posit the idea that the plane was hi-jacked to the closed US military island base of Diago Garcia and many, made and published before the downing of MH17 and all those I saw, none of which were made by Russians or the Russian media, predict that this missing plane would turn up being used in a future false flag event.  After the downing of MH17, it didn’t take long for the idea to gain circulation that it was in fact the missing MH370 and that it had been transported to Donbass and blown up on the ground maybe with the preserved bodies of the ill fated passengers of MH370 inside or that it had even taken off from Amsterdam with the bodies inside etc!  Well dear reader, maybe you, like me find all these theories pretty far fetched if not ridiculous or maybe in very bad taste.  The fact however is that neither you nor I can absolutely rule them out no matter how far fetched they seem because there is a small window of possibility.  The US and her allies have the means to pull off such an operation and the motive.  We would do well to remember the film of an explosion on the horizon that was broadcast by all the world’s mainstream media, including Russian, as the explosion of MH17 hitting the ground.  As many quickly pointed out, a plane, still over half full of fuel, blown up at high altitude by a ground to air or air to air missile would have left smoke trails in the sky as it fell.  That seems beyond all scientific doubt but absolutely no traces in the sky appear in that video so that would seem to suggest that either it does not show the impact of MH17 but something else (more likely in my opinion) or, well yes, the plane was in fact blown up on the ground. There has also been a historical precedent for such an idea albeit on a much smaller scale physically but, nonetheless of great historical significance.

Operation Mincemeat which was made famous as a book and a film called The Man Who Never Was.  This was a plan executed in April 1943 to fool the Germans into thinking that the allied invasion of Sicily would in fact happen in Greece.  A dead body was procured, dressed up in a British officer’s uniform, given a false identity and a briefcase chained to his wrist containing “top secret” documents about the allied invasion of Greece not Sicily.  The dead body was made to look like the victim of a plane crash of the coast of nominally neutral but in fact pro German Spain.  In reality however his body was delivered to the area by a submarine.    The plan worked so well that when the actual allied invasion of Sicily began the German’s thought it was just a diversion and didn’t respond having transferred the majority of their forces to Greece.  When, the following year, just after the D Day landings, the Nazis found genuine top secret plans in an abandoned landing craft, they refused to believe them being sure it was another such ruse as operation Mincemeat.  Here’s a link (now promise not to laugh) to a Daily Mail article on the whole subject.  It does just suggest that the idea of already dead bodies in planes might have a certain feasibility after all which is something Anne Applebaum, among many others, doesn’t want you to think about.

I repeat that I am not supporting or debunking any conspiracy theories here.  I cannot prove, or disprove just as you cannot prove or disprove any of the above mentioned theories or, for example, that Aliens exist or that they don’t exist therefore we cannot dismiss or confirm one hundred percent those theories involving aliens either.  It really is that simple.


As for the conscious or unconscious agendas I talked about earlier, I would, in spite of his virulence, put Garry Kasparov in the unconscious camp.  He so often loses control of his emotions and his discourse which is clearly out of all reality.  I wonder if he has ever asked himself why he thinks and feels that which he does, I very much doubt it.  Berezovsky was someone with a very similar mind set in my opinion.  Anne Applebaum on the other hand seems to be squarely in the conscious camp.  In other words, she is deliberately lying in order to, not distort the truth but totally reverse it in true Orwellian style.  I don’t claim to know exactly what her motive is.  Due to the fact that her husband was the Polish foreign secretary (he was one of the EU politicians who brokered and signed the ill fated deal with the Yanukovych government in Kiev that didn’t even last twenty four hours), her finances had to be made public and, as many pointed out, she benefited from a huge spike in earnings as soon as the Ukrainian crisis began in 2013 followed by an ongoing scandal concerning the disclosure of their earnings in subsequent years but I find it hard to believe somehow that her motive is solely financial.  Maybe simply anti-Russian racism and/or a commitment, ideological and self interested, to financial world takeover of the US, western debt based fractional reserve banking system.  Whatever the reason is, it has to be admitted that she is a very effective propagandist who’s discourse remains coherent, controlled, pointed but utterly premeditated and false.  In fact her tirade in the Munk Debate against Russia since Putin became president is in reality one of the most concise and accurate descriptions of today’s USA and also post putsch Ukraine that I’ve ever heard.  Her total insistence that the western media is truthful and objective is also a 100% truth inversion.   Russian media has become infinitely more truthful and objective than its western counterpart which has descended into out and out double speak.   I have never seen or heard her lose her temper or be overtaken by emotions of any kind.  It must be said however that I’ve never seen her in debate against someone who actually takes her apart as it would be eminently possible to do.  That, of course, is anything but coincidence.

“Truth is by nature self-evident. 
As soon as you remove the cobwebs
of ignorance that surround it,
it shines clear”  – Mahatma Gandhi.

 As many of us have already noticed it is not a comfortable experience when our emotionally charged, often, long held beliefs are challenged by adverse, contradictory information which we are unable to ignore.  It takes the kind of courage not given to all to accept and analyse the cognitive dissonance that comes in such situations and to ask why it is happening and many people, including plenty that I know personally, simply refuse to believe anything that contradicts the, invariably “cozy” world  which they have allowed to be constructed for themselves.  Such people often become defensive and sometimes down right aggressive when pressed.  This is because they can’t ignore the information, only smother it or block it from their conscious mind.  The reason that some information is impossible to ignore is a very important phenomenon as basically this means that it is fundamental truth or at the very least the grain of truth that can lead us out of the pit of lies.   If, for example, somebody tells you or I that the Earth is flat, we are not going to feel any surge of panic or cognitive dissonance of any kind for obvious reasons but try telling an American who comes from a staunch, traditionally Democrat family and has a deeply entrenched – indoctrinated belief that the Democrats are “the good guys”, the ones who care about other people and the poor at home and abroad and are anti-war etc, that, in fact, Obama and Clinton are among the most dangerous warmongers in history, responsible for illegal invasions and that they are just puppets of the military, industrial complex, Wall Street and “some people” called the Illuminati and sparks will certainly fly.   There is an excellent video on-line called “Confronting Cognitive Dissonance – The Eyeopener”:

At 5.11 an American lady begins to describe her physical reaction when she understood that she was receiving very uncomfortable information about 9-11 which, much as she wanted to, she just could not ignore.  Her reaction is courageous and very moving and anyone who dismisses her as a conspiracy theorist can only be mal-intentioned or seized by cognitive dissonance themselves.  It is our intuition or as some like to say “our gut”; in truth, our connection to universal intelligence, that tells us whether such information is real or not.  This is the same phenomenon as the moment of inspiration that artists and scientists have when a new scientific understanding or invention, poem, novel, song, symphony is born.  First the moment of inspiration and insight; then starts the hard work of creation, building, experiment, investigation, trial and error and bringing forth.  Every single human being is connected to universal intelligence, not just an elite few, but intuition, just like any other human faculty, becomes stronger the more we use it.  The vital fact here is that we all know the truth when we here or see it whether we like it or not.  Again, “Truth is by nature self-evident.  As soon as you remove the cobwebs of ignorance that surround it, it shines clear”.

We live in a time of massive change where the world seems to have been turned upside down at such lightning speed that many of us feel that we can’t keep up which is of course disturbing.  I use words like “seems” and “feels” because this is an illusion.  In fact this situation has been growing for a long time.  Centuries in fact and some would say millennia.  This particular moment in history started, was started (examine & discuss) at the beginning of the 1990s.  I would liken it to a wave that as it comes in slowly to shore, grows and swells inexorably until it finally crashes leaving that which was on the top, on the bottom.  That which seemed democratic and free, undemocratic and tyrannical, that which seemed to be built on solid foundations, built on quicksand, that which seemed good, evil and vice versa.  Above all, there are no ideologies left although for those with the aforementioned long held emotional attachment to this or that ideology = products of Man’s ego, this is pretty hard to accept.  What’s left on the shore as the wave recedes is simply right or wrong, good or evil, truth or falsehood.   In fact a world of fundamental polar opposites.  Many.  Especially in the western world lulled by the media bubble of unreality are seemingly, on the surface, unaware of these massive shifts.   My own awakening only came with the Ukrainian crisis as I have already documented in “NATO Through the Looking Glass”.  I now live in a totally different world and it is much more frightening than the one I was living in up to three years ago but I’m getting used to it and in no way want to return to unconsciousness.  I now question everything and am exercising my intuition and faith, in the true sense of the word, every day.  What this reveals is infinitely more terrifying than the cozy “womb warmth” I used to live in but the payback is that things line up and actually make sense and I feel much healthier for it.  The many layered onion skins that were enveloping my perception are falling away one after another and I’m very aware that this process is very far from over but the idea of crawling back into my former mind set is impossible for me.  It would be akin to committing suicide.  I’m also very aware that, thank God, I am very far from being the only one undergoing this process.

Of course, like so many others during these times, I’ve got used to being called a conspiracy theorist which is probably why I was moved to write this article. I am proud to be in the camp  inhabited and moved by people such as the lady in the “Confronting Cognitive Dissonance” video who states that she felt physically sick when she understood that her government, which she had more or less trusted up until that moment might have been behind 9-11. Such people are searching for truth and discovering themselves.  The other kind of conspiracy theorists are those who invent or propagate conspiracy theories for money and power and, or because they want to convince us that their particular prejudice is the one and only true prejudice whoever it be directed against.  “It’s all the fault of the people I’ve learned to hate and you must agree with me.”  Perennially popular targets remain: The blacks, the Jews, Monarchs, business people, immigrants and Russians to name but a few and these conspiracy theorists are of course the 100% polar opposite of the former.  One looking for the truth and the other, deliberately trying to destroy it. The American Lady reluctantly facing up to her realization that the official government conspiracy theory about 9-11 doesn’t hold water and the fear of looking into what seems to be at first glance, the darkness of the abyss or:   Anne Applebaum’s constantly and professionally reiterated conspiracy theories about Putin being a tyrannical dictator and mafiosi obsessed with world domination who has to be stopped by the “free, democratic” West before he, followed by his “brainwashed” millions in Russia will march in “good old” WWII style to enslave us all.  I leave you to contemplate these two examples.  These two absolute, polar opposites.  The seeker for truth and the bald faced liar for gain!


“Britain Votes Merkel Out Of Office, Too” is the astonishing headline from Germany’s 3rd largest newspaper Die Welt. Pinning the blame for The Brits’ vote, the op-ed lambasts The EU’s political failure, “The British do not leave the EU as narrow-minded snobs that had not meant it to happen that way, but as proud democrats that no longer wanted to put up with the snags and political failures of the EU;” and puts the blame squarely on the sagging shoulders of Angela Merkel (and her solo attempts at refugee policy)… “voters in Britain basically also voted Angela Merkel out of office. Before she becomes the EU’s gravedigger for good, she should follow David Cameron’s example.”

Via Die Welt,

Britain leaves the EU because a majority no longer wants to tolerate the union’s political failure. One key factor contributing to that is the German chancellor’s solo attempts in the refugee policy.

The exit of the British marks the beginning of a new era, perhaps less so for Britain, which never really felt at home in the EU, rather than for the rest of Europe. Eventually, citizens between Scotland and the White Cliffs of Dover did not only vote David Cameron out of office, but also the hesitant and narrow-minded leaders in the EU whose arguments did not persuade a majority. Their policy of stubbornly sitting it all out has also failed.

What has until now been the biggest democratic field test on membership in what used to be an exclusive club called EU has demonstrated three things: first, despite undisputable merits, the EU in its current state is simply incapable of mustering majority support. As a result, second, the institutions simply cannot muddle along, out of touch with reality as they are, as they have done so far. And third, the current leaders have been unable to halt the obvious erosion of the biggest political project of the day. Structural problems and crises have apparently been too much for the professional troubleshooters in the compromise factory called EU.

 What the EU would actually need now is stringent reforms: tightening decision-making processes, simplifying the tangled institutions, ending the undemocratic procedures by strengthening the European Parliament, and, above all ending the selfish wheeling and dealing in the European capitals that, in most cases, leads to leaving Brussels holding the bag. Yet how is that supposed to be done? How can one calmly go about refurbishing a wrecked home that some of its residents have just left? And how does the administration in Brussels, involved as it will be over the next few months in customarily tedious and obscure exit negotiations, intend to prevent a domino effect?

The British do not leave the EU as narrow-minded snobs that had not meant it to happen that way, but as proud democrats that no longer wanted to put up with the snags and political failures of the EU. It was not them that divided the country into supporters and opponents, beneficiaries and losers, those preferring to live in the past and those looking ahead, nationalists and cosmopolitans. That was all the making of the EU itself. That same institution that accepted the Nobel Prize as a unique peace project has dramatically lost support by allowing chaos to reign over the euro and tolerating unregulated immigration far beyond Britain. Before the British said bye-bye, lots of other places were ablaze as well. The triumph of the neo-nationalists, Orban in Hungary and Kaczynski in Poland, as well as the advance of the leftwing populists of Syriza in Greece, the Five Stars in Italy, and Podemos in Spain have demonstrated how moribund Europe’s disagreeing union has long since become. The Brexit is not a dress rehearsal that, when failing, can still be salvaged with a few repairs by the actors involved.

If we are unlucky, the historic drama is already in its final act. On closer examination, the Brexit is just the logical consequence of the EU constitution that failed in referendums in the Netherlands and France in 2005 already. After that, the intricate institutions rumbled on more or less without control and leadership while policymakers ignored to cut the most ambiguous projects of state sovereignty — Schengen and the euro — down to size.

Europe has neglected its citizens — not the other way round. When those citizens can watch the EU, the spin-off and replacement of the traditional nations, doing badly on a daily basis, its leaders should not be surprised when an increasing number of people prefer the somehow functioning original to the shaky innovation. This is the real reason, rather than stupidity and backwardness, that made nationalism, already on the way out, fashionable again in the middle of Europe. The narrow outcome, which would have been impossible one year ago, also shows clearly that Angela Merkel’s laissez-faire in the refugee crisis has ruined David Cameron’s political career — and estranged Britain from the EU for good. It was the pictures of the Balkans and the excesses of Cologne, which UKIP [United Kingdom Independence Party] leader Farage loved to refer to with relish, that decided the Brexit.

There are a number of precedents. For some 10 years or so, the EU has no longer been working properly, because it has bound together countries economically and politically that are simply not suited to one another. The fabulous career of Alexis Tsipras from Trotskyite nutcase to prime minister of a bankrupt euro-zone country is due to the failure of the single currency in Greece. Austrian Chancellor Werner Faymann was the first, but not the last, head of government falling victim to the refugee crisis. France, Europe’s central nation, has been governed for months in a state of national emergency because Islamist bombers were able to also cross the open borders in the Balkans and attack the core of Europe’s liberal way of life. There is quite a lot that would allow the situation to be described as a multiple systemic crisis.

Is it a surprise then, when in view of such failure individual EU member states delegate responsibility for their immigration policy to tiny Macedonia and close the Schengen borders at will? Is it a surprise when a whole generation of hopeful young people in Southern Europe have given up on the EU, when the resolution of the euro crisis is deferred again and again for the sole benefit of the banks — in contravention of all European rules? Grit your teeth and get over with it has long since ceased to be an option, because that stupid tactic has helped the EU go to the wall in Britain.

At the moment, and that says it all, the European Union is only popular and highly regarded in the countries in Eastern Europe. Where people are in fear of Putin’s expansionist policy such as in the Baltic states, where billions from Brussels are pumped into infrastructure and agriculture such as in Poland, or where the domestic political elite is much more corrupt and undemocratic than in the EU such as in Romania or Bulgaria — there, and unfortunately only there, people are eager to join the rundown golf club.

Yet a European Union that will routinely hold membership negotiations with Kosovo, Albania, or semi-dictatorship Turkey will only stagger into collapse. Citizens will simply not play along. And the next referendums could be on the doorstep in core Europe, with neo-nationalists such as Geert Wilders in the Netherlands and Marine Le Pen in France loudly demanding to let their people democratically vote on membership in the EU. When the benefits of a deal called EU are not eventually felt in the minds and pocketbooks of all citizens, it is unmarketable as a model for the future.

At the moment, the most powerful European, Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, tries his hand at being crisis manager of the sorrowful countenance. As Luxembourg’s prime minister, he has been diligently involved in dismantling the EU with elaborate tax tricks at the expense of the neighbours. It is an irony of history that Cameron, a democrat, steps down while bureaucrat Juncker could be allowed to slouch over his desk and even lead the humiliating exit talks. If the EU eventually wants to present itself as a democracy, the European Parliament must remove Juncker. Tightening and resuscitating the entire project must be in the hands of younger, changed leaders. If not now, when?

 The European disaster in Britain, which – notwithstanding its bitter aftertaste – is a feast day of popular sovereignty, also puts a woman at the centre that has been highly praised by the media and the elites and that many already regarded as Europe’s unofficial chancellor. Angela Merkel, together with her finance minister, made the euro crisis in Greece a matter for Berlin to settle. By making the breach of the rules — the financing of governments — a permanent state of affairs, she bought time and damaged the sensitive European currency project for good without structurally resolving the malaise in the Mediterranean countries. And when Angela Merkel opened the borders in the migration crisis entirely on her own only to negotiate a dubious deal with Turkish ruler Erdogan also on her own, she demonstrated to citizens what she thinks of the EU and its institutions: very, very little. For the head of a party in charge of the European legacy of Konrad Adenauer and Helmut Kohl, this is a confession of political bankruptcy. On Thursday [23 June], voters in Britain basically also voted Angela Merkel out of office. Before she becomes the EU’s gravedigger for good, she should follow David Cameron’s example.