Rhondda Records logo 1
 
Rhondda Records Home Page
 
 
Rhondda Records Cartoon Page
A page to help the Rhondda laugh
 
 
Quotations Page
Words said in truth or jest
 
 
Your Health Page
A page to help your health - be positive !
 
 
Peace Page
A Page from the Rhondda dedicated to Peace
 
 
One Union
A Page to help unity among working people
 
 
Penrhys, Rhondda Page
A page telling the story of a unique magical village - Penrhys, in the Rhondda !
 
 
Discussion Page
Let's open up and share (communicate)
 
 
Richard Gould's Page
Move over Titch Gwilym and Micky Gee, Richard Gould IS the new Welsh virtuoso
 
 
Efran Kaye's Page
The master of music, Efran Kaye is here!
 
 
Glynbyerful Male (voice) Choir's Very Own Page
a choir from all the Glyns of the Rhondda for nutters
 
 
Peace Events and leftwing events Page
Some activities you just might like to aid Peace
 
 
Rhondda History Page
A page to help those who want to know the Rhonddas past
 
 
Jobs in the Arts Page
News of opportunities in drama, music, dance in Wales
 
 
Rhondda Records' Top Ten Books Page
Great Thinkers point the way forward
 
 
FOLK REVOLUTION
A Page for those who DO care about true folk
 
 
Poetry and Literature in Wales Page
Poetry and Literature in Wales
 
 
Welsh Recipes Page
Food to honour from Wales' tradition for now
 
 
Siarad Gwmraeg?
Welsh language News
 
 
Rhondda Records' Shop
Stuff yew cun buy, frwm the Rhondda, innit
 
 
Poet's Page
music and opinion from Wales' wandering poet.
 
 
Business Support in the Rhondda and Wales
answers for start ups and established firms in a changing world
 
 

Rhondda Records Home Page



 
ENJOY TODAY: THIS MIGHT
BE AS GOOD AS IT GETS !!! 



_________________________________________________________
 
 
Beijing tells Japanese politicians,
 to drink Fukushima’s wastewater
 to prove it’s safe, before they
 dump it into the ocean
April 15th,, 10:24am (RT)
 
 
The Chinese Foreign Ministry has called on 
politicians in Tokyo to use Fukushima’s 
wastewater for drinking, cooking, 
washing clothes, or irrigation
- in order to prove it is safe 
enough to be discharged 
into the ocean.
 
Speaking on Thursday, Chinese Foreign Ministry 
spokesman, Zhao Lijian, reinforced Beijing’s 
opposition to Tokyo’s decision to dump 
over one million tons of “treated”
nuclear waste-
water into
the ocean. 
 
“Japan’s claims that the safety of nuclear wastewater 
relies only on unilaterally obtained data, which is 
completely unconvincing… The Tokyo Electric 
Power Company, which is responsible for 
operating the Fukushima nuclear power
 plant, has tampered with data and 
concealed the news,” the spokes
-
man claimed, insisting that 
international agencies be
 called upon.
 
Zhao said Japanese politicians are at the centre 
of the coverup, and demanded they prove the 
water’s safety.
 
The spokesman added that, as pointed out by a 
German marine science institute, the Fukushima 
coast has one of the strongest ocean currents
in
 the world. “Within 57 days from the date
of 
discharge, radioactive substances will 
spread to most of the Pacific Ocean, 
and spread to the global waters in
 10 years,” Zhao stated. 
 
On Monday, Tokyo announced it would be releasing 
the wastewater from the Fukushima nuclear plant, 
which went into meltdown in 2011 into the ocean 
“in around two years” as capacity to store the 
liquid runs out. The plan, which had been 
widely rumored to be Tokyo’s preferred 
option, was met with condemnation
by 
Japan’s neighbours. 
 
In 2020, Greenpeace claimed that the supposedly
 treated water, still contains: “dangerous levels of 
carbon-14,” a radioactive substance that has the 
“potential to damage human DNA.” More than a 
million tons of wastewater, containing radio-
active tritium, has accumulated since 
the meltdown.
 
Like this story? 
 
Share it with a friend!


__________________________




A Quarter of deaths involving 
Covid-19 in England & Wales 
not caused by virus itself,
 govt statistics show
April 14th, 8:28am (RT)
 
In roughly a quarter of deaths involving Covid-19, 
in England and Wales, people actually died ‘with’
the coronavirus rather than ‘from’ it, new weekly
 data from the government reveals.
 
According to the Office of National Statistics (ONS), 
400 coronavirus-linked deaths were registered in
 England and Wales, in the week ending April 2nd. 
Covid-19 was recorded as the underlying cause 
of death in 308 cases, which means that 23% of 
people died ‘with’ the virus, rather than ‘from’ it.
 
Deaths involving Covid-19 made up 4.9% of deaths 
registered in England and Wales over the same 
period, compared with 7.2% the week before 
and 45% in mid-January.
 
Daily Covid-linked deaths have been steadily 
decreasing in the UK since the second wave 
of infections peaked in mid-January.
 
Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, argues that the 
positive trend is mainly a result of lockdowns, 
rather than an ongoing vaccination campaign. 

The PM warns that the infection rate will 
“inevitably” rise again ---  if the country 
starts to reopen now.
 
More than 32 million people across the UK have
 received their first vaccine dose... On Tuesday, 
England started using the Moderna vaccine... 
joining Scotland & Wales that began using it 
earlier this month. Other vaccines that are 
currently in use, are the Pfizer/BioNTech 
and AstraZeneca/Oxford ones.
 
Think your friends would be interested? 
 
Share this story!
 
 
_________________________________



Zionist Entity Says
 ‘Rejects ICC Authority’ 
to Investigate War Crimes
April 9th, 11:33am (al Manar)
 
The Zionist entity said on Thursday that it rejects 
the International Criminal Court’s authority to 
investigate war crimes committed by the 
occupation regime in the West Bank, 
Gaza Strip, and east Al-Quds
 (Jerusalem).
 
According to Hebrew media sources, the Zionist 
regime will send its response via a letter, where 
it will argue that The Hague “lacks jurisdiction”
 in the matter.
 
According to the Associated Press, the notifications 
were sent to all signatories of the Rome Statute,
the
 court’s founding charter, as well as the
Zionist 
entity and Palestinians, on
March 9th.
 
Under Article 16 of the Statute, an ICC investigation or 
prosecution can be deferred for up to a year  --  on a 
request from the UN Security Council, which must 
first approve the appropriate resolution.
 
The occupation regime is not a party to the Rome Statute 
and has impudently protested the court’s decision, 
claiming that it is “capable of conducting its 
own investigations.”
 
Source: Israeli media
 
 
_________________________________________


Ex-minister reveals 'most
disgusting
 interference'
in UK by Israeli lobbyists
April 9th, 10:30am (PressTV)


A former British lawmaker, says pro-Israel lobbyists 
are interfering in Britain's public life and negatively 
influencing the country's foreign policy in the
 Middle East.
 
Conservative Friends of Israel (CFI) has been 
responsible -- for pushing the UK to adopt 
disproportionately anti-Palestinian, and 
pro-Israel policies, the former Tory
 
MP and government minister
until 
2019, Alan
Duncan says.
 
The CFI is a parliamentary group that supports
the
 ruling Conservative Party and advocates
for
 pro-Israel policies.
 
The CFI has injected a "Netanyahu-type view of Israeli 
politics, into our foreign policy", Duncan has said, in 
his newly published memoir, referring to extremist 
Israeli prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu. 
 
“A lot of things do not happen in foreign policy, or in 
government for fear of offending them because that
is the way it’s put to them by the CFI," Duncan said, 
stating that the group had lobbied - to prevent him
 from becoming Middle East minister at the 
foreign office.
 
"It’s a sort of buried scandal that has to stop… they 
will interfere at a high level in British politics in the 
interests of Israel, on the back of donor power 
in the UK," he said. 
 
Duncan said his new role of Middle East minister was 
agreed until the then foreign secretary Boris Johnson 
alerted him - that CFI lobbyists “are going ballistic”.
 
Duncan served as minister of state for Europe and the 
Americas between 2016 and 2019 under then prime 
minister, Theresa May. Following her resignation, 
and the ascension of Boris Johnson, he stepped 
down from his position and did not stand for re-
election in the December 2019 parliamentary 
elections.
 
He accused the CFI of "the most
disgusting 
interference" in
British politics.
 
Duncan has previously come under fire from pro-Israel 
circles for his support for pro-Palestinian positions, 
such as his criticism of illegal Israeli settlement 
construction in the occupied Palestinian
 territories.

John Hughes stamps issued by Donetsk

DPR Post issues stamps featuring 
Welsh engineer John Hughes, 
founder of Donetsk
April 2nd, 2021 at 2:28pm
 (DAN news agency) 


The DPR's State Post has issued a postal stamp featuring 
John James Hughes, a Welsh engineer, businessman and 
founder of the city of Donetsk.
 
The stamp is decorated with Donetsk coat-of-arms and 
Hughes portrait. The stamp can be used for registered 
letters with receipt up to 20 gr, in accordance with the 
current fee rate of 44 rubles.
 
The number of copies issued is 30,024.
 
The envelope for the new stamp features pictograms 
representing industrial objects and clippings of 
Donbass geological map.
 
Hughes moved to the Russian Empire in the summer of 1870, 
at the age of 55, as Millwall Iron Works Company received an 
order from the Imperial Russian Government for the plating 
of a naval fortress being built at Kronstadt on the Baltic Sea.
 
He immediately started to build metal works close to the 
river Kalmius, at a site near the village of Alexandrovka.
 
Over the next twenty years, the works prospered and expanded, 
first under John Hughes and then, after his death in 1889, under
 the management of four of his sons.
 
Hughes died on 17 June 1889 during 
a business trip to St Petersburg.
 
According to some sources, Hughes  learnt 
to write, and could only read capital letters.
 





TORIES ARE STRIPPING & PRIVATIZING the NHS 
and Taking 
Away OUR RIGHTS: with a never-
ending lockdown that Labour MPs support!

Neil Clark, journalist, writer and broadcaster:
''The sad and rather shocking truth, is that the 
current UK Parliament could quite happily 
keep us locked down indefinitely. 
Remember, MPs get their £81K 
annual salaries (plus perks) 
paid in full, each month, 
whatever happens. 
And... there is no 
general election 
due until 2024. 


''The only way the restrictions will end, is 
if 
the public have had enough of them and 
stop complying in large enough numbers. 
Otherwise, what incentive is there for 
the 
well-heeled, power-crazed, lock
down-
addicted political class to
lift them, 
especially with the 
next general 
election so
far away?''


________________________________
 
 
WHO Won't Support 
COVID Passports
April 6th, (teleSUR)


Several countries are touting the initiative of 
COVID-passports or immunity passports as 
a safe means to travel and fully reopen
 their economies.
 
The World Health Organization (WHO) rejected 
on Tuesday the use of COVID passports amid 
concerns it would not prevent the 
virus's spread.
 
During a press conference, the WHO spokesperson, 
Margaret Harris, said the experts “are not certain
at 
this stage, that the vaccine prevents
transmission." 
 
Likewise, the official raised concerns that the use of 
these passports could be discriminatory; hence the 
WHO won't endorse it. Getting tested is a requisite 
for an immunity passport. However, in many 
countries, thousands cannot access a 
test;  therefore, these passports 
exclude the majority.
 
Several countries are touting the initiative of COVID-
passports or immunity passports as a safe means 
to travel and fully reopen their economies. Last 
year Chile announced it intended to issue the 
world´s first immunity passports. Germany, 
Italy, and the U.S., have publicly backed 
the alternative.
 
 (See our Health Page, for much, much more...)


__________________________________


'Divisive and Discriminatory': 
70 UK MPs Sign Pledge to 
Oppose Government's 
COVID Passport Plans
by Oleg Burunov
April 2nd, 5:56am (RT)
 
 
On Thursday, UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, said 
there wlll "definitely" be a role for vaccine passports
 for Britons going abroad --- and that a similar COVID 
certification scheme may be "useful" within Britain.
 
Over 70 UK lawmakers, including 40 Conservatives, have 
warned the British government over its plans to use 
COVID-19 vaccine passports within the country.
 
On Thursday, a cross-party group of politicians signed a 
pledge to oppose the move --- vowing they will oppose
"the 
divisive and discriminatory use of COVID status 
certification to deny individuals access to 
general services, businesses, or jobs".
 
The signatories include ex-Tory leader Sir Iain Duncan 
Smith and former Cabinet ministers Esther McVey, 
Andrew Mitchell, and Sir John Redwood, as well 
as leading Tory COVID rebels, Mark Harper 
and Steve Baker.
 
One more signatory is Sir Graham Brady, chair of the 1922 
Committee of Tory backbenchers, who described COVID-
status certification as something that "would be divisive
 and discriminatory".
 
"With high levels of vaccination protecting the vulnerable 
- and making transmission less likely - we should aim to 
return to normal life, not to put permanent restrictions 
in place", Brady added.
 
Also signing the pledge was a 20-strong group of Labour MPs, 
among them former Shadow Home Secretary Diane Abbott 
and ex-Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell.
 
Labour peer Baroness Shami Chakrabarti, who also joined the
 campaign, dubbed the possible introduction of internal COVID 
passports "an authoritarian step too far".
 
The pledge's signatories included almost all Liberal Democrat 
MPs, with their party leader Sir Ed Davey earlier labelling the
 use of COVID passports within Britain "illiberal" and 
"unworkable".
 
"As we start to get this virus properly under control, we should 
start getting our freedoms back, vaccine passports - essentially
 COVID ID cards - take us in the other direction", Davey argued.
 
He was echoed by another signatory, Sam Grant, of the UK-based 
rights group Liberty, who asserted that any COVID passport 
system may lead to a "two-tier society" as well as
 "inequality and division".
 
The campaign comes as UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, 
told reporters on Thursday that "there's definitely going to
 be a world in which international travel will use vaccine 
passports".
 
He also admitted that a similar COVID certification scheme to
 show if someone has had a vaccine "will be useful" within
 the UK. The remarks followed Johnson saying last week 
that pub goers could be asked to show a COVID-19 
vaccine certificate.
 
The Daily Telegraph has, meanwhile, reported that COVID 
passports may be tested within weeks -- at several pilot 
events, including the FA Cup Final, the World Snooker 
Championships, and the Brit Awards. 
 
A UK government spokesperson, however, reportedly said 
that "no decisions" on the matter have been taken yet and 
that "it might be a tool we look at as part of pilots, but no
 more than that".
 
 
_________________________________________


 Over 60 Lawmakers Urge 
UK Home Secretary to
End Ban on Protests
20.03.2021 (Sputnik) 
 
 
Over 60 members of the UK parliament, have written 
to Home Secretary Priti Patel demanding he lift the
 ban on protests during the COVID-19 pandemic 
and deeming it a violation of human rights, 
activists who helped put together the
 letter, said Saturday.
 
The letter, coordinated by the campaign groups Liberty 
and Big Brother Watch, was signed by Conservative 
and Labour MPs, Liberal Democrat leader Sir Ed 
Davey & a number of peers. It quotes Articles 
10 and 11 of the European Convention of
Human Rights which protect the rights
 to freedom of expression and 
freedom of assembly.
 
"We must all be able to stand up to power and have 
our voices heard. In a healthy democracy, protest 
is a critical way we can fight for what we believe 
in. The Government’s current quasi-ban on 
protest is completely unacceptable," Head 
of Policy and Campaigns at Liberty, Sam 
Grant said, according to a statement
by 
Big Brother Watch.
 
"A country cannot be described as a democracy if 
people do not have the freedom to protest," Big 
Brother Watch director Silkie Carlo added.
 
This comes after controversy arose last week 
over police handling of peaceful protests 
organised at the vigil at Clapham 
Common in memory of Sarah 
Everard, a woman who was 
kidnapped and murdered 
as she walked home 
in London.
 
Further protests are planned for today by anti-lockdown
campaigners, even though these gatherings are not 
considered as a "reasonable excuse" for leaving 
the house under the current regulations.
 
"The Home Secretary must immediately issue guidance to
all police forces, to ensure socially distanced protests 
can go ahead -- and create an explicit exemption for 
protests in the current regulations. Those in power 
have made clear that they want to silence dissent 
and drastically curtail our right to free
expression," 
Grant said.
 
Carlo added that the "harrowing scenes" of Metropolitan 
Police officers using force against women at Clapham 
Common were "avoidable and wrong."
 
Met Police officers were criticized for arresting women 
who were attending Everard's vigil last Sunday. The
 Home Office said it was still illegal for people to 
attend protests at a time when regulations are
 in place to prevent wide transmission of the 
COVID-19 virus.
 
Everard, a 33-year-old marketing executive, disappeared 
as she walked home on the evening of March 3rd. Her 
body was found hidden in a builder's bag in an area 
of woodland in Ashford, Kent on Wednesday.
 
 
____________________________________________



 ‘Law is a mess’: UK parliament committee 
blasts govt over failure to protect ‘right to
 protest’ after Sarah Everard vigil outrage
March 19th, at 18:02pm (RT)
 
The British government failed to make it clear that 
protests were still permissible under Covid-19 
restrictions and confused both the public and 
the police on the issue, a parliamentary 
committee has concluded.
 
The restrictions on gatherings introduced by the
 government during the pandemic have been 
“confusing” and ambiguous, the parliament’s
 Joint Committee on Human Rights said in a 
statement on Friday, adding that protests 
have never been “completely illegal” 
even during lockdown, if 
held properly.
 
The “confusing” nature of the government regulations 
has left the public “unsure of their rights and at risk of
 arbitrary or discriminatory decision-making,” the 
statement said. The government imposed a 
general ban on gatherings but failed to 
make protests an exemption from this 
rule – in a move that the committee 
argued violated the 1998 Human 
Rights Act and the European 
Convention of Human Rights.
 
“The law on the right to protest during the pandemic
has
 been a mess & the right to protest has not been 
protected,” the committee’s head, Harriet Harman, 
said. The lawmakers looked into how different 
protests in the UK unfolded since the 
government started imposing 
restrictions, due to the
Covid
-19 epidemic.
 
The UK has seen quite a number of high-profile rallies 
last year, including the Black Lives Matter protests,
 demonstrations by the defenders of monuments 
targeted by iconoclasts, as well as marches 
against national lockdowns.
 
Most recently, the Reclaim These Streets movement 
organized a number of vigils in commemoration of 
Sarah Everard, a victim of apparent kidnapping 
and murder. One such event in the Clapham 
Common area of London, where Everard 
went missing, ended up in clashes with 
police, after UK law enforcement 
deemed it illegal, under the 
current rules.
 
The incident sparked public outrage and led to another 
rally outside of New Scotland Yard as well as calls for 
Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick to 
resign. The commissioner herself maintained her 
position that “unlawful gatherings are unlawful 
gatherings,” adding that she did not consider
 resigning.
 
The parliamentary committee blamed the developments 
on the government. “The events of last weekend show 
clearly how the lack of clarity and level of uncertainty 
in the law is unacceptable and must be remedied as 
a matter of urgency,” Harman said.
 
The committee also drafted some amendments to the 
regulations that would “guarantee the right to protest
 in public outdoor places, if done safely” by putting it 
on the same footing as picketing and communal 
worship.
 
Earlier, a legal complaint filed by those seeking to make 
organized vigils permissible under lockdown, was 
defeated in the High Court, which ruled it was
up 
to the police to decide whether the right
to 
protest clashes with the broader public 
health considerations - and a ban on 
mass gatherings amid the pandemic.
 
The UK government has, so far  not reacted 
to the parliamentary committee’s statement.
 

 
 


UK Trade Union Leader Warns -
Keir Starmer Is Turning Labour
Into 'Party of Establishment'
by Jason Dunn
21.03.2021, 20:21 GMT 
 
 
Sir Keir Starmer has become the subject of criticism 
by the left-wing of Labour -- as he is accused of 
leading the party in a right-wing trajectory and
 away from the socialist policies of his 
predecessor.
 
A leading British trade unionist has accused Sir 
Keir Starmer of trying to turn Labour into an 
"establishment" party --- and risking his 
chances at the next general election.
 
Len McCluskey, the general secretary of Unite, said
that the opposition leader could be "ditched into 
the dustbin of history" unless he changes his 
current approach and reaffirms Labour's 
dedication to radical politics. 
 
Speaking to LBC radio on Sunday, Mr McCluskey, an ally
of the former leader, Jeremy Corbyn, and large donor 
to the party, criticised Sir Keir for missing "the 
opportunities” of the ongoing coronavirus 
pandemic.
 
“The truth of the matter is, at the moment, the direction
we are travelling - that he seems to be taking us down -
 is to turn Labour into a party of the establishment", 
he said.
 
McCluskey warned that if that were to happen "he will not 
become prime minister in 2024, he will be ditched into the
 dustbin of history".
 
“I am urging Keir to look at his pledges, to reject the siren 
voices of the ghouls of New Labour and to stick to the
radical policies that will win back the Red Wall seats", 
the Unite leader said.
 
Mr McCluskey highlighted Sir Keir's treatment of the left 
such as the removal of the whip from Mr Corbyn last 
year, as causing a rift between the leadership and 
his largest donor.
 
He stressed that the leader had stood in his election 
campaign on a left-wing programme, similar to 
Labour's 2017 and 2019 manifesto, but claims 
he has now dropped those promises, during 
his leadership tenure.
 
These included commitments to free movement,
as well as opposing increasing corporation tax.
 
“At the moment nobody quite knows what Keir stands 
for, nobody quite knows what Labour stands for", 
Mr McCluskey told the outlet.
 
McCluskey predicted that Starmer could be the next 
prime minister in 2024, "not an overall majority, but 
a hung parliament - if he wins back the red seats 
by arguing on the radical platform that he was 
elected on".
 
“He was elected to make the moral case for socialism, 
he was elected on ten pledges that people said were 
Corbynist", he added.
 
His comments follow an acknowledgement by Sir 
Keir that the Conservatives have seen a "vaccine 
bounce" in opinion polling, as an explanation for
why Labour is losing ground to the Tories, in 
recent voter intention surveys.
 
Sir Keir has received criticism by some Labour members
--- for being too ready to abstain or support government 
motions, police spies, and Boris Johnson's Brexit deal, 
and for not pushing for a convincing alternative to the 
Conservatives handling of the pandemic.
 
Others have pointed to Sir Keir's purging of left-wing 
members from the party such as the suspension of 
Jeremy Corbyn and the removal of Rebecca Long-
Bailey from the shadow cabinet.
 
The Labour frontbench claims that these moves were 
part of the party's commitment to deal with incidents 
of antisemitism, which plagued his predecessor.
 
Electoral Chances?
 
While Starmer's 10 election pledges were largely 
consistent with the values of the Corbyn leader-
ship, he has been criticised for moving the
 party towards the centre.
 
While some of his supporters have hailed his ascension 
to the top job as an improvement in terms of voter 
approval ratings, Sir Keir has seen his support 
among the public decline, as his positioning is
seen to drift away from Labour's radical 
stances in recent years.
 
Corbyn was historically unpopular as a party leader, 
seeing net satisfaction ratings of as low as -60 and
ultimately resigned after losing the 2019 election. 
 
However, the 2017 general election saw the Labour Party 
receive its biggest increase in the vote since 1945, and 
secure a hung parliament.
 
It was also the only time any Labour Party platform - 
which included the renationalisation of rail and an 
end to austerity - had resulted in an increase in 
both the overall vote and the number of  seats
in parliament, since Tony Blair's landslide
victory in 1997. 
 
 
_________________________________



Deputy Leader Says Labour Could 
Suspend ‘Thousands’ of Members 
over  'Antisemitism'
December 1st,  2020  (FNA)
 
 The Labour Party will suspend “thousands and thousands” of 
members unless they “get real” about antisemitism, Angela 
Rayner warned, as an internal row rages over the 
removal of the whip from Jeremy Corbyn.
 
Following Keir Starmer’s decision not to allow Corbyn to sit as a 
Labour MP over his reaction to the Equality and Human Rights
 Commission (EHRC) report, dozens of constituency parties 
are reported to have passed motions in support of the 
former leader – despite the party’s General Secretary 
David Evans banning them from doing so.
 

_________________________________________
 
UK Labour candidate
 trained with Israeli 
army: Report
March 13th (PressTV)
 
A British Labour Party candidate for the party’s election
this year, has reportedly been trained with the Israeli 
military forces.
 
Izzy Lenga, an officer in the Jewish Labour Movement, 
is running for the party’s new National Women’s 
Committee, as a right-wing candidate.
 
The movement worked for years, to oust 
the party’s former leader Jeremy Corbyn.
 
Corbyn, well known for his support of the Palestinian 
cause, has repeatedly been described by pro-Israeli 
lobbies in Britain, as a threat to the life of Jews in
 the country.
 
The US-based Electronic Intifada — an online publication 
covering the Israeli-Palestinian conflict — released a 
photo of her wearing an Israeli army uniform, 
wrapped in an Israeli flag and carrying an 
assault rifle.
 
Lenga once “proudly” displayed the photo 
on social media networks, said the report.
 
Citing Israeli experts Dena Shunra and Daniel Shunra, 
the website said that the uniform and epaulets seen 
in the photo suggest that Lenga took part in Marva, 
a paramilitary course overseen by the Israeli army.
 
The Marva program provides weapons and training, 
Zionist political indoctrination, and visits to 
military bases.
 
It also recruits Jewish people aged 18-25, from around 
the world, offering them incentives to become Israeli 
settlers in the occupied Palestinian territories.
 
Many participants in the course, have stayed in 
Israel, 
claiming citizenship & joining the military.
 
In 2015, Lenga became an officer with the campus society 
in Birmingham, which is affiliated to the Union of Jewish 
Students (UJS).
 
At the same time, she was also elected to
 the leadership committee of the UJS.
 
________________________________

 
Labour Leader Keir
Starmer
 
'Must Give 
Evidence' to Inquiry, 
Say Activists 'Fitted 
Up 
by Spycops'
by Mohamed Elmaazi
15:22 GMT 05.02.2021 (Sputnik)
 
 
A collection of activists who were found to have been 
wrongfully prosecuted and convicted in 2009, are 
demanding that the former chief prosecutor 
answer questions before the ongoing 
Undercover Policing Inquiry.
 
Environmental activists who were wrongfully convicted 
have called upon UK Labour Party leader Keir Starmer 
to answer questions at the Undercover Policing Inquiry
 (UCPI), for his role in an alleged coverup of the use of 
undercover police when he was Director of Public 
Prosecutions. The activists in question were 
arrested, whilst planning a protest against 
Ratcliffe-on-Soar coal-fired power station, 
in Nottinghamshire, England, in April 2009.
 
The open letter, which has received scant media coverage 
since its publication on 4 February 2021, alleges that 
Starmer, "may have been involved in a cover-up of 
police and prosecutors orchestrating wrongful 
convictions".
 
"A decade ago, this month, the world learnt that Mark Kennedy 
was a Metropolitan Police officer spying on environmentalists.
 This information led to the collapse of a trial where six 
environmental campaigners were accused of 
conspiring to occupy a coal-fired power 
station", the letter published via the 
Campaign Opposing Police 
Surveillance (COPS) 
website explains.
 
In a separate trial, "the convictions of 20 campaigners for 
conspiring to occupy the same coal-fired power station 
were quashed by the Court of Appeal, because the 
prosecution failed to disclose information about 
Mark Kennedy’s involvement that would have 
helped their defence", COPS add.
 
Starmer, as chief prosecutor at the time of the trial, 
commissioned a report headed by former Court of 
Appeal judge Sir Christopher Rose Report into the 
withholding information about the role of under-
cover police in the two cases. The Rose Report 
ultimately determined that the, "failings were 
individual, and not systemic". However, the 
findings of the Rose Report appeared to be 
contradicted by further evidence of activist 
groups being infiltrated by police with the 
latter's role not being disclosed to
 the defendants.
 
"Why did Keir Starmer ask for three reviews into CPS 
failings relating to undercover policing that were kept 
from public view, before commissioning the Rose 
report?", the signatories to the letter asks.
 
"What action was taken by Keir Starmer after the Rose report 
was shown to be wrong, to uncover other miscarriages of
 justice?", the letter adds.
 
Crucially, the letter points out that a report commissioned by 
then-Home Secretary Theresa May into possible miscarriages
 of justice identified "83 activists who were convicted in trials
 involving an undercover officer, over three decades", and 
ask how it is, that the CPS inquiry, "has, to date, 
discovered nobody whom the media and 
campaigners hadn't already identified".
 
Labour's current leader has, as of yet, not responded to the 
letter signed by 18 men and women who were, "arrested 
and charged with conspiracy, or arrested, charged and 
wrongfully convicted of conspiracy", with the former 
undercover officer, Mark Kennedy.
 
The UCPI was initiated by Theresa May when it was discovered 
that the police had been secretly recording the lawyer-client 
conversations of the family of Stephen Laurence, who was 
murdered in a racist attack, in 1993. Stephen Lawrence's 
family continued to push for their son's killers to face 
justice after a botched police investigation resulted 
in a separate inquiry to determine that the 
Metropolitan Police were "institutionally 
racist". After the UCPI was set-up, the 
Metropolitan Police admitted to 
infiltrating and surveilling over 
1,000 political, environmental 
and social justice groups, 
since 1968.
 

_____________________________________________________



Corbyn Suspended for
Telling the Truth
– 
A New Socialist Party
Is Required
by Tommy Sheridan 
31/10/2020 (Sputnik)
 
The other day a thoroughly decent and honest man 
suffered a grave injustice. A man who has a peer-
less record in opposing racism and anti-Semitism 
was suspended by the political party he has been 
a member of for over fifty years, has represented 
it in the British Parliament since 1983 and was 
its leader from 2015-20.
 
Irony died in Britain yesterday when Jeremy Corbyn was 
suspended by the Labour Party with the consent and 
probable collusion of the man who succeeded him 
as leader, Sir Keir Starmer.
 
We now have a Tory leader in 10 Downing Street who is 
famed for his racist views, including referring to black 
Africans as “piccaninnies” with “watermelon smiles”.
 
A racist Prime Minister nostalgic for the days of slavery 
and brutal exploitation and ownership of black people 
was elected by the people of England in preference 
to a man whose whole life has been dedicated to 
fighting racism and injustice.
 
Corbyn Was Betrayed by His Own
Party Bureaucracy in 2017
 
Jeremy Corbyn would have won the 2017 General Election 
if his campaign had not been sabotaged from within by 
Labour opponents. They hated him more than the 
Tories and refused to accept the democratic will 
of the Labour Party masses who elected Corbyn 
leader, not once but twice with a bigger majority 
the second time round in 2016. 
 
He led a remarkable 2017 election campaign which inspired 
millions and confounded all the opinion polls and political 
pundits as he came within a whisker of winning. He 
smashed the Tory majority and rocked the British 
Establishment. A genuine socialist was almost 
elected to lead the UK. Millionaires and 
billionaires were petrified that they 
would be forced to pay their taxes 
and public services would no 
longer be up for sale. 
 
Corbyn would have won if staff at the heart of the 
Labour Party had not actively undermined him.
 
Paid Labour Party staff expressing disgust for the 
elected leader of their party and hoping for a bad 
election result and undermining the effectiveness 
of the campaign wherever possible is what the 
right wing did with gusto. And - after the close 
call of the 2017 general election - the powerful 
and rich who make up the British Establishment 
and mainstream media declared war on Corbyn 
from every angle, but specifically colluded to 
weaponise the scourge of anti-Semitism and 
throw every slur and empty accusation 
against Corbyn that was possible 
to muster.
 
After 2017 Close-Call, Anti-Semitism 
Was Weaponised Against Corbyn
 
An incredible narrative was created whereby a man that 
had done more in his life to confront and combat racism 
and anti-Semitism than anyone in British politics, was 
cast as an anti-Semite. It was bizarre, ridiculous, and 
obscenely unfair and inaccurate but it was effective 
in creating a wholly false perception. An inordinate 
number of Labour anti-Semitism stories, headlines 
and even documentaries were produced and by 
2018 polls of Jewish voters indicated an 
incredulous number believed the Labour 
Party was anti-Semitic while the problem 
in the Tories and Lib-Dems was perceived 
to be minor.
 
Labour Became Huge Under Corbyn – 
Over 500,000 Members
 
Jeremy Corbyn attracted hundreds of thousands of new 
members to the Labour Party and transformed it into the 
biggest membership party in Europe with well over 
500,000 signed up to his brand of socialism. The 
number of party members ever subjected to 
accusations of anti-Semitic behaviour never 
surpassed more than 300, so the anti-Semitic 
‘problem’ in Labour amounted to 0.1% of its 
membership at most but the coordinated 
media led campaign aided and abetted 
by Labour right wing MPs, created a 
deeply warped and distorted picture 
that almost 62% of party members 
were anti-Semitic.
 
This was the result of a well-coordinated media 
campaign led by the BBC to traduce the 
character of Corbyn and the Labour 
Party under him.
 
Feeding from the false narrative and whipped up 
hysteria created by the media the Equality and 
Human Rights Commission (ECHR) decided to 
launch a formal investigation into claims of 
anti-Semitism within Labour to establish if 
they had breached the Equality Act 2010 
and were guilty of acting unlawfully in 
relation to anti-Semitic actions. This 
decision was taken in May 2019 amid 
the Brexit crisis and talk of an early 
general election. The fact the ECHR 
acted on the basis of complaints 
from vehemently anti-Corbyn 
organisations indicates just 
how loaded the dice was 
from the outset.
 
Anti-Semitism is Abhorrent --- but 
Jeremy Corbyn is Not an Anti-Semite
 
All anti-Semitic behaviour and opinions should be 
condemned and confronted unreservedly. Of that 
there should be no doubt or debate. But the 
accusations of anti-Semitism against the 
Labour Party have been overstated and 
used politically to undermine Labour 
and Corbyn. Anti-Semitism is a problem 
in society as a whole. An ugly repulsive 
problem. But to suggest Labour has a 
bigger problem than other parties or 
that Jeremy Corbyn is an anti-Semite 
is patent nonsense and lies.
 
Unlike the Corbyn detractors, Labour’s 2020 ‘No 
Place For Antisemitism’ Report provides hard 
facts refuting media and ECHR allegations 
that Labour under Corbyn did not address 
anti-Semitism complaints.
 
The Labour Party expelled 45 members in relation to 
antisemitism in 2019, compared to 10 in 2018 and 
1 in 2017.
 
After rule changes passed at Conference in September 
2019 gave NEC panels the power to expel, twice the 
number of people were expelled in two months than 
had been expelled during the whole of 2018.
 
NEC Disciplinary Panels heard 274 cases relating to 
antisemitism in 2019, a tenfold increase on the 28 
cases heard in 2017.
 
In 2019, 149 members were removed from the party as 
a result of disciplinary processes relating to anti-
semitism, either being expelled or quitting the 
party as proceedings progressed.
 
The Labour Party suspended 296 members in relation to 
antisemitism in 2019, compared to 98 in 2018 – itself a 
big increase on the previous year”.
 
Once you have read the facts contained in this Report and 
considered that the lengthy ECHR Report which took 
almost 18 months to compile concludes that Labour 
is guilty of “unlawful acts of indirect discrimination 
and harassment for which the Labour Party is 
responsible” based on the conduct of TWO 
Labour Party members, Ken Livingston and 
a Councillor called Pam Bromley, you can 
reasonably conclude that when Corbyn 
said the allegations of anti-Semitism 
against Labour were “overstated” 
he was stating a fact.
 
Corbyn was a clear and present danger to the rich and 
powerful British Establishment and his sympathy with
 the Palestinian people and willingness to call out 
Israel’s human rights abuses made him dangerous 
on an international plain also. America and Israel 
could not tolerate a pro-Palestinian British Prime 
Minister. The anti-Semitism campaign was a 
conscious and dishonest scheme to under-
mine his electoral credibility and the BBC 
played a blinder in promoting the lie at 
every available opportunity.
 
A New Trade Union Supported 
Socialist Party is Now Urgent
 
The suspension of Jeremy Corbyn from Labour is an 
attack on him and every single socialist still in that 
party. Jeremy is now suffering the consequences 
of being popular on the one hand but being far 
too pliable on the other. The day Jeremy stood 
back & allowed socialists like Chris Williamson 
to be suspended was the day he succumbed to 
the right-wing bullies within the Labour Party 
hierarchy. Chris was a loyal lieutenant of 
Corbyn. A very capable and popular 
crusader for socialism. 
 
When the right wing went after him with the anti-Semitism slur 
Jeremy should have resisted and stood with Chris. Instead he 
sought to avoid an internal battle and that was his ultimate 
undoing. Jeremy had the backing of the members but not 
the comfortable and right-wing bureaucracy who used 
their influence to stifle Corbyn and undermine his 
2017 election campaign.
 
The new Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer is determined to turn 
the party back into a Tory second eleven like in the red Tory 
Tony Blair days.
 
The challenge to other socialist Labour MPs and the trade union 
leaders who support socialist policies which will actually 
improve the lives of their members is clear. If you can’t 
fight for the former leader of your party who raised the 
hopes of millions & came so close in 2017 to winning, 
then you are not worthy of the description of socialist. 
The time has come for a party of workers that promotes 
socialism with guile, enthusiasm, and pride. Instead of 
funding Starmer’s Tory Party Mark II, the trade union 
movement should fund a real socialist party --- 
committed to changing the lives of millions 
for the better.
 
The suspension of Corbyn must be the crossing of the Rubicon 
for the socialist and trade union movement. Labour is already 
irrelevant in Scotland. It will become irrelevant in England 
as well soon. The time for a new force backed with trade 
union organisation and resources, is now.
 
 

Benjamin Zephaniah's Birth Day

 
 
Today, April 15th, in 1958,
 
Benjamin Zephaniah,
 
writer and dub poet,
 
is born.
 
 
 
“Living rooms are arranged around the TV, 
but when you take away the box you have 
the freedom to arrange the room to 
suit yourself.”
 
 
''As the only black kid in my primary school playground, 
animals had become my friends. By 15 I was vegan, 
although I didn't give up honey until 16. For a while 
my mother thought it was just "a rasta phase". …
 I can honestly say I've not been tempted to give 
up veganism in 27 years. I sometimes smell a
 chip shop, and like the smell, but then feel 
guilty because fish might be part of it. But
 I'll go home and make vegan chips. After 
all these years, my favourite food is my 
mother's butter bean stew with whole
 potatoes, yam and dasheen.... I don't 
think I've ever made a meal for her, 
to be honest. I think she would 
consider it a failing of her 
motherhood and say 
"Boy, get out
 the kitchen."“
 
 
''Someone said that Capitalism will eat itself, 
and I think that’s like the meat industry, the 
meat industry itself will become dead meat 
and compassion will reign supreme.''




 
UK could experience lockdowns 
for 'SEVERAL YEARS' despite 
vaccination program, SAGE 
member warns
February 9th (RT) 
 
A member of the UK government's Scientific Advisory Group for
 Emergencies (SAGE) has claimed that lockdowns could be a 
part of people's lives for "several years" as variants of 
Covid-19 mutate.
 
Professor Sir Ian Boyd, who teaches at the University of St 
Andrews' School of Biology, warned this week against the 
frequent lifting of lockdowns because "it simply fuels a 
new wave of disease" that can cause the virus to
 replicate more and mutate into new strains.
 
"There are a lot of reasons for taking pain now, in order to 
create conditions for controlled release from [restrictions] 
a lot easier," he argued, adding, "Otherwise we risk just 
passing through phases of various levels of lockdown 
and release."
 
Boyd said that lockdowns "could go on for a long time," despite
 the UK's mass vaccination program. "My suspicion is that we 
will experience a damped oscillation of control-release for a 
long time to come — perhaps several years."
 
Brits reacted negatively to the prospect of lockdowns 
still being used in several years, calling it "madness."
 
"Ok. This is ridiculous now,"tweeted journalist James Melville, 
while another social media user argued the country "won’t 
survive" years of lockdowns.
 
"If you are waiting to live, love, and laugh with others again 
until things get back to normal, that normal may never
 come,"commented church pastor Regan Blanton 
King. "Going forward, it is important that we 
prioritise faith and family and lobby
 for freedom."
 
Experts have frequently told Brits that the UK would start 
returning to normal once the majority of the population is 
vaccinated. Mutations of the virus, however, have led to 
an increased concern over whether the vaccines will 
work efficiently against new strains.
 
At least 147 cases of the South African variant, deemed to be 
a faster-spreading strain Of Covid-19, have been recorded 
in the UK, though officials fear the number could 
be higher.
 
Brits seem to have become increasingly fed up with lockdowns,
 which have been implemented in various tiers since March 
2020, according to data which shows more people are 
leaving their homes to go shopping. Most shops are 
forbidden from opening, but stores deemed 
essential like supermarkets, newsagents, 
and pharmacies remain open, while 
others remain open only for 
click-and-collect services.


_______________________


Beijing hopes Washington will follow 
China’s lead & invite WHO to the US 
in search for origin of Covid-19
February 2nd  (RT)
 
The Chinese Foreign Ministry has urged Washington 
to invite the WHO to conduct traceability testing in 
the US, citing the fact the American authorities 
found Covid-19 antibodies in blood donations 
as early as December 2019.
 
Speaking on Friday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman 
Wang Wenbin, told reporters that Beijing has always 
maintained close communication and cooperation 
with the World Health Organization (WHO) on 
Covid-19 traceability, and he said it was 
time the US followed suit. 
 
“I hope that the United States will adopt a positive, scientific, 
and cooperative attitude on traceability issues -- as well as 
maintain transparency, like China -- & invite WHO experts
to the United States to conduct traceability research 
and 
make positive contributions to international 
anti-
epidemic cooperation & scientific 
traceability.” 
Wang said.
 
The spokesman told reporters that traceability testing 
was 
a very complex issue, with many clues, reports 
and 
studies needing to be taken into account.
 
“I will give you an example. According to a research report 
by the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention... 
there were antibodies to the new coronavirus in some 
American blood donations in December 2019. This 
means... that the new coronavirus may have 
appeared in the United States at that time, 
earlier than the official US report,” Wang 
stated, reinforcing Beijing’s call for 
Washington to invite the WHO
 to America.
 
Wang continued to point out that China has conducted 
multiple rounds of in-depth exchanges and shared 
a lot of information and research results with 
international partners, including the WHO. 
 
WHO experts are currently in China investigating the source 
of Covid-19, and they visited a wet market in Wuhan on 
Sunday. It has been widely suggested that a Chinese 
wet market was the environment where Covid-19 
first passed to humans. 
 
Scientists are still exploring a number of 
theories relating to the origins of the virus.
 
If you like this story, share it with a friend!


____________________________________


Social Distancing May 
Remain in Place All 
Year
 in UK: 

Experts Say 
Vaccine Would Have 
to Be 85 Percent Effective to Stop 
A Surge in Deaths
 Under Life 
as Normal
January 31st  FNA)
 
Social distancing may remain in place until the end of 
the year - while coronavirus vaccines would have to 
be 85 percent effective to prevent a surge in deaths
 if restrictions were totally relaxed, scientists 
warned on Saturday.
 
Modelling passed to Downing Street warns that the UK 
would see a large spike in deaths if inoculation fails to
 significantly cut transmission.
 
A paper commissioned by SAGE subgroup SPI-M and 
produced by modellers at the University of Warwick 
showed a "high uptake" was also vital to get the 
country back to normal without risking a third 
wave of coronavirus.
 
It also warned that even with Britain's breakneck vaccine 
rollout underway, the decline in deaths is slow - and finds
 that even in a best-case scenario, lockdown would have 
to be kept in place until June to prevent another 
significant spike in deaths, according to 
the Telegraph.  
 
The paper said, "Only vaccines that offer high infection-
blocking efficacy with high uptake in the general 
population, allow for the relaxation of non-
pharmaceutical interventions, without 
a huge surge in deaths."
 
Experts think efficacy is currently at 60 percent 
but it is still an unknown.
 
SPI-M's other modelling groups at Imperial College London 
and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine 
have reportedly reached similar conclusions.
 
Even in the best case scenario - where vaccines stop 85% of 
transmissions - lockdown will have to stay in place until May.
 
If lockdown was lifted mid-February, a third surge of 
infections would follow by April, the modelling found.
 
While efficacy at 85 percent would mean deaths peak at 1,000 
deaths a day, at 60 percent daily deaths would rise by an 
average of 500 to 1,500 a day.  
 
Dr Sam Moore, one of the paper's authors, said, "If we get 
very high infection blocking then this could almost be 
what delivers us from it, but it would have to be very 
high. Even vaccines with 85 percent infection 
blocking, are insufficient to drive 'R' below 
one on their own."
 
Because the R rate is now above three social distancing 
measures have to stay in place for longer for the 
vaccine to take effect without risking 
more deaths.
 
If the vaccine does provide a 60 percent block against 
coronavirus transmission, as experts have suggested, 
lockdown could end at the end of May, according to
 the Warwick model.
 
But a ban on large events and other social distancing 
restrictions would still need to be in place until the 
end of the year.      
 
A Government spokesman said, "At this early stage in 
the vaccination programme, scientists do not have 
sufficient data to advise how the vaccine may 
affect onward transmission." 
 
It comes after Prime Minister Boris Johnson forced the 
EU into an extraordinary double climbdown during a 
dramatic late-night intervention to protect the UK's 
record-breaking vaccine rollout.
 
During two phone calls just 30 minutes apart, the prime 
minister made European Commission President Ursula 
von der Leyen ditch plans to stop 3.5 million doses of
 the Pfizer jab from reaching the UK from a factory in 
Belgium and abandon the "nuclear option" of 
imposing a hard border on Northern Ireland 
to prevent them reaching the UK.
 
Following his diplomatic victory, Britain on Friday 
recorded a daily record for first-dose jabs – 
487,756 – to bring the total to almost 
8.4 million.
 
In his phone calls, Johnson warned von der Leyen that 
her actions risked denying millions of UK pensioners 
their second Pfizer injections. 
 
She immediately capitulated in a tweet sent 
out shortly before midnight, on Friday. 
 
As part of an implicit "peace deal" with the EU, No 10 Friday 
adopted a conciliatory tone. Cabinet Office Minister Michael 
Gove said the EU recognised that it had "made a mistake" 
and both sides agreed on the need for a "reset".
 
Northern Ireland's First Minister Arlene Foster was less 
diplomatic, branding the EU's move an "incredible act 
of hostility". 
 

 ___________________________________________


Halfway through this winter of Covid,
 overall mortality is around normal 
for this time of year. Something 
doesn’t add up
January 21st  (RT)


by Peter Andrews, Irish science journalist 
and writer based in London. He has a 
background in the life sciences, and 
graduated from the University of 
Glasgow with a degree in genetics


Although the numbers of deaths attributed to the virus 
in the UK are higher than they’ve ever been, in total, 
not many more people are dying than in any other 
cold season. Is the mainstream media finally 
waking up to this?


A recent article in the Telegraph is one of the first in a 
mainstream outlet to even suggest a challenge to the 
official coronavirus narrative. These days, that 
narrative claims that the ‘second wave’ is 
actually deadlier than the first. (Recently, 
some Branch Covidians have been 
claiming a ‘third wave’, but there
is 
not yet a united front on that.)


The basic reasoning of the article is sound, even if it is 
long overdue. It laments how, every day, the media 
solemnly reports the latest Covid deaths' figures. 

Presenting this figure in isolation results in graphs 
that do, indeed, seem to show that we are at the 
height of a second, worse phase of a pandemic. 
But, like any statistics, daily death numbers are 
meaningless without context, which the media 
rarely provides.


They do not provide context because, if they did, the public 
might see a graph such as the one from a Telegraph article.
 It quite clearly shows the spring spike in overall mortality, 
which was caused by Covid (plus lockdowns). After that 
ends in summer, we see… nothing. Overall mortality 
ever since, even through this winter, hovers at 
around the five-year average. And overall 
mortality, as I’ve repeatedly pointed out, 
is the only true way to know whether 
you are in a pandemic or not – all 
other figures can easily be fiddled.


Out of whack


So, why are the excess death data & the Covid deaths data 
so out of whack? And why isn’t Covid killing lots and lots of 
people this winter, as it did in spring? Even if you ascribe all 
excess deaths to Covid and none to lockdown, there really 
does not seem to be anything out of the normal variation 
in total deaths from year to year. And surely, by now, the 
toll of unnecessary deaths caused by untreated cancer, 
heart disease, depression and so on, has at least 
begun to register.


One reason coronavirus might not be slaying all around it this 
winter is because, well, this is not its first winter. Remember: it 
is called Covid-19, as in 2019. Of course, the official version of
 history states that the virus didn't reach Western civilisation 
until the spring of 2020, but evidence for this assertion is 
based on dodgy polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests 
and a profound rejection of common sense. (By the 
way, how many people do you know who had a 
severe bout of pneumonia-like symptoms 
last winter?)


But the main reason for the disparity is obvious: mass PCR 
testing. Under the current regime (science is the wrong word), 
a ‘Covid death’ is someone who dies having tested positive for
 Covid within the previous 28 days. When you test all hospital 
patients, as the UK does, then some of them will turn out to be 
positive – how many depends largely on the way you do the 
tests. And the more tests you do, the more ‘Covid deaths’ 
you will generate. It is that simple. Dr Mike Yeadon has 
written extensively on this, which he calls the PCR 
false positive pseudo-epidemic.


Too little, too late


In another time, it might have been shocking that it took so long 
for the science editor of a broadsheet newspaper to wonder 
why, in the midst of a killer pandemic the world’s not seen
 for a century or so, the number of people dying in the 
country is ordinary. Better late than never I suppose, 
but do not take this as a sign that reinforcements 
are coming. Even this article makes absolutely 
sure to pledge allegiance to Covid orthodoxy, 
stating without evidence: “severe restrictions 
were … clearly essential to control the 
growing 
pandemic’’.


Most people do not get their information by sifting through 
government-issued statistics on websites designed to 
hinder you. But there used to be a word for someone 
who got paid to do exactly that and then tell the 
public, in plain English, what they found. Oh, 
that’s right – we used to call those people 
‘journalists’. There don’t seem to be many 
of them about these days, not even at
 the Telegraph.
Like this story? Share it with a friend!


___________________________________________


Police chief mocked after declaring
British ‘civic duty’
 
is snitching on
neighbours who violate
Covid-19 rules
(RT updated October 30th, 2020) 


A UK Chief constable has been deluged with mockery 
and Hitler memes, after arguing it’s every resident’s 
duty to turn in neighbours and local businesses for 
breaking lockdown rules and complaining about
how British culture reviles snitches.


UK residents who report their neighbours and local 
businesses to the police for violating the country’s 
increasingly stringent Covid-19 control measures 
are just doing their “civic duty” and should be 
praised, not ostracized, Merseyside chief 
constable Andy Cooke told the Daily
Mail 
on Wednesday.


“People are doing a civic duty in contacting us for the 
right reasons,” he stated, insisting “the vast majority 
of people across the country are really concerned 
about this” and “any information that you can give 
us, in relation to breaches, will save lives, and
that’s 
why people are [reporting to the police].”


Lamenting that the practice of turning one’s neighbour in
to the authorities for minor infractions wasn’t more widely 
accepted among respectable Brits, Cooke blamed a 
“sneering culture” for placing rats at the bottom of
the social hierarchy.


His remarks weren’t received well on social media, where 
users were quick to pull out the Nazi pics & Orwell quotes.


“This is what Hitler and Stalin demanded 
of their people,” one user pointed out. 


Others suggested the cops focus on fighting real crime. 
Merseyside saw a 6.3 percent increase in violent crime 
over the past year, according to statistics released
 in July.


A few played along, tweeting that they could “hear voices 
of people having fun and not living in fear” and “even
saw two people hugging, no face masks they were 
even smiling.”


Several suggested the strategy of enlisting civilians
to 
police their neighbours would backfire, both by 
destroying trust in the police and by creating 
suspicion in communities.


Cooke’s paean to the common snitch came on the heels 
of similar comments by West Midlands Police and Crime 
Commissioner David Jamieson, who said in a Tuesday
 interview that police would not hesitate to break up 
Christmas and other holiday celebrations if they 
“flagrantly” violated the government’s rules 
on gatherings.


National Police Chiefs Council chair Martin Hewitt also promised 
“quicker enforcement” of “blatant” rule violations earlier this 
week, urging members of the public to report “egregious 
breaches” - like pubs being open past the 10pm cutoff - 
that “put everybody at risk.” As of Wednesday, the 
NPCC had issued 20,223 fines for violations of the 
Covid-19 restrictions, including 980 spot tickets
 for breaking lockdown.


Unlike Jamieson, however, Hewitt declined to speculate 
on whether his officers would be breaking up Christmas 
parties, instead merely urging the public to take heed 
of the rules in whatever part of the country they 
opted to spend the holiday. 


Despite a steep fall in the number of deaths with Covid-19 
from the pandemic’s peak earlier this year, the UK has
 introduced a strict three-tier lockdown nationwide, 
barring people from congregating in groups larger 
than six and prohibiting home visits.



______________________________________




Britain died for me this week. It’s become 
a Covid-obsessed police state, and I don’t 
understand what it stands for anymore
by Chris Sweeney. November 7th, 2020 



Chris Sweeney is an author and columnist who has written 
for newspapers such as The Times, Daily Express, The 
Sun and Daily Record, along with several international-
selling magazines. Follow him on Twitter 
@Writes_Sweeney


I’ve always been proud to say I’m British – until now. The
 authorities’ bloody-minded determination to implement
lockdown rules at the expense of people’s wellbeing 
is not what our great country should be about.


Sometimes you can be too close. You are looking, but you
don’t see it. That’s where I found myself this week with 
the current state of Britain --- amid another round of 
ever tighter restrictions caused by the pandemic.


Don’t get me wrong. There are loads of things I’ve always 
loved about my country – our traditional British good 
manners for example. Rather than see it as a sign 
of weakness, I pride myself on our reputation 
for queuing in an orderly fashion. I also like 
that we hold the door open for the person 
behind us.


I admire our outstanding National Health Service, which 
allows everyone to access medical treatment without 
having to dig out a credit card or an insurance plan. 
And I enjoy flying British Airways over far-flung 
lands, offering me some form of attachment 
– even if it is superficial.


I won’t apologise for tea being regarded as the boring 
and bland equivalent to freshly ground coffee – it’s 
our drink, and I love it. And the way we honour 
our war heroes with the humble poppy, is
 thoroughly respectful.


But this week, some of that pride in being British 
died for me. It’s a very different sentiment I’m 
feeling. Beyond disillusionment. Fury even.


How could Britain have fallen so far 
in the way it treats its own people?


It began with the horrifying detention of a 97-year-old
grandmother by police in the Yorkshire town of Market
Weighton. Her daughter, a qualified nurse, wanted to 
bring her home from a care home, to look after her 
during lockdown, and quietly wheeled her out of
 the home.


However somewhere along the line, a jobsworth felt 
the need to justify their existence & reported what 
had happened. The episode ended with her grand-
daughter in tears filming a video, showing her 
own 
mother in handcuffs inside a squad car, 
while the 
old woman sat in another car, 
completely 
bewildered.


The police’s response? They were responding 
to “a report of assault.” Incredible.


The horror continued, as students at the University of
 Manchester’s Fallowfield ''halls of residence'', awoke 
to find workers erecting fences around their facility 
to ensure they couldn’t leave. They were being 
installed, following government guidelines 
asking students not to return to their 
permanent homes.


One student said: “They're huge metal barriers, they're 
connected to one another and there's literally no gaps
….it makes it feel like we're in a prison.”


In what version of the United Kingdom do we keep our 
bright, young people caged like dogs? Unsurprisingly, 
some of the outraged students began to rip them 
down, causing even more angst.


ALSO ON RT.COM
Protests of more than two people 
will be ILLEGAL under updated
 rules for UK national lockdown


Another university using its power to force students 
to bend to its will, is world-famous Cambridge. It 
announced that anyone who leaves its halls 
of residence, won’t be able to graduate or 
progress to the next year. That’s despite 
each paying at least £9,250 per 
academic session.


Then there was the Ripped Gym in Harlow, Essex. It 
opted not to close --- in breach of the government’s 
latest lockdown. The morality of that is debatable, 
but the gym claims it didn’t sell any long-term 
memberships and offered only day passes. 
Whatever you think of the decision, what
 is beyond argument is that it didn’t need 
four police cars and approximately 20 
officers to descend in a raid-style 
scenario.


Were they expecting John Gotti? Rather, it was a well-
meaning business owner & some locals on treadmills. 
The owner ended up being dragged away & was still 
in police custody, at the time of writing.


Contrast this with the most tragic occurrence, the death
 of Corey Liversedge. This 16-year old from Aberdeen-
shire took his own life, as anxiety overcame him as 
a result of the suffocating nature of lockdown.


His grieving parents summoned the bravery to raise 
awareness of his plight, with his mother saying, “It’s 
not just children with diagnosed mental health 
conditions — it can happen to any child, and 
Corey was any child.”


Britain used to be a nation that cared. But now, it seems
 that the priority is treating any slight infraction of lock-
down rules like a terrorist attack, while vulnerable 
people are left to struggle along on their own, 
without help from the wider community.


The complete lack of emotional intelligence from 
our authorities was evidenced by London police 
arresting 104 people in a single night for 
breaching regulations.


What happened to community engagement? Aren’t we 
all supposed to be on the same side? Incredibly, it’s 
now even illegal for anyone to enter or leave Wales
---  unless it is covered by the contentious term of 
“essential travel.” The police, of course, are 
monitoring the roads and pulling over cars 
to conduct checks.


Yes, the pandemic is a serious situation and we 
should not be complacent about 48,000 people 
dying. Precautions have to be taken.


But what is happening across the UK is nothing short 
of barbaric. Our police have turned into robots, 
carrying out whatever they are asked to, 
no matter how cruel or wrong.


The government has forgotten what a wonderful 
population they are tasked with representing, 
and are treating us all like North Korea 
does dissenters.


They say you never really truly appreciate something 
until it’s gone. And I’m petrified that the courteous, 
courageous sprit that defines Britain, is on the 
point of disappearing for good, crushed by 
the uncaring iron first of the Covid-
obsessed authorities.


We deserve better than this.


Like this story? Share it with a friend!


__________________________________

 

COVID19 in the UK the story so far...
please see our Health page.

United Nations Universal Declaration on Bioethics and 
Human Rights, Article 6 - Consent: Any preventive, 
diagnostic and therapeutic medical intervention 
is only to be carried out with the prior, free and 
informed consent of the person concerned. 

Article 3 - Human dignity and human rights: 
The interests and the welfare of the 
individual should have priority over 
the sole interest of science 
or society.



ROGER WATERS TO MUSICIANS:- "BOYCOTT ISRAEL"

Roger Waters formerly of Pink Floyd, in an open letter,
 calls on his fellow musicians to boycott the Zionist
Israeli regime and follow the example of the cultural
boycott against the ex South African Apartheid regime.

“Given the inability or unwillingness of our governments
 [to act] …. I write to you now, my brothers and sisters …
 to ask you to join with me, and thousands of other artists
 around the world, to declare a cultural boycott on Israel,”
Roger Waters says in his letter.

Waters says the Zionist regime has been found guilty of
 major breaches of human rights and international law
 by international organizations, UN officials and the
International Court of Justice.


He touches on two such cases, saying the regime has been
 identified as perpetrating the “crime of Apartheid”, including
 in a statement on March 9th, 2012 by the UN Committee on
the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, and the “crime of
ethnic cleansing” including in East Jerusalem (al-Quds).

Waters adds that he has been a member of the Boycott,
 Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign against the
 Israeli regime’s occupation of the Palestinian lands and
 Tel Aviv’s violations of Palestinian human rights for 7
 years, and now wants other musicians to also join
the
anti-Israeli front.


“Please join me and all our brothers and sisters in global
 civil society in proclaiming our rejection of Apartheid in
 Israel & occupied Palestine, by pledging not to perform
 or exhibit in Israel or accept any award or funding from
 any institution linked to the government of Israel, until
 such time as Israel complies with international law
and
universal principles of human rights.” 


The former Pink Floyd Musician also says he has recently
 faced a boycott by the US media after his November 29th,
 2012 address at the UN on behalf of the Russell Tribunal.

In the address, he sought accountability for the Zionist
 regime’s violations of the international law and the lack
 of United Nations resolve that prevents the Palestinian
 people from achieving their inalienable rights,
especially 
the right of self-determination.



____________________



AT THE FACTORY

Tickets from

www.wegottickets.com/thefactory

www.ticketweb.co.uk

browse venues in Wales

www.ticketlineuk.com

02920 230130

Cash tickets from:

The Factory, Porth
Instrumental Music, Penygraig
Spillers Records, Cardiff

For more details visit

www.factoryporth.com
www.facebook.com/TheFactoryVenue
Twitter @TheFactoryPorth
01443 687080


***********************************************


Daytime Delights...

Starts at 1pm
The Parc & Dare, Treorchy

Lunchtime Concerts in the Lounge Bar.

Indulge in a delicious cake and a cup of tea
while enjoying music and sing-along songs
from fantastic Welsh musicians.

Ticket information:
The Cultural Services Booking & Information Line:
08000 147 111
or book online at
www.rct-arts.co.uk 


 
*************************************************


Mid Rhondda Modelling Club...


7pm - 9pm

Tonyrefail Comprehensive School
Mid Rhondda Modelling Club
has been running for over 30 years.

We meet on a regular basis
& enjoy making models for display.

We encourage both Gentlemen
and Ladies to attend,
and also young people aged 12+.
However, Young people under 16,
must be accompanied by an adult.


Ticket information
£1 contribution every week. Under 16's free

Telephone Mr. Davies on 01443 686658


************************************************


 Comedy In The Laughter Lounge

The Park & Dare Theatre, Treorchy.

COMEDY IN THE LAUGHTER LOUNGE

Join us once a month in the intimate setting
of the Laughter Lounge for some
top notch comedy with some of the
biggest and brightest

rising comedians on the circuit.

Laugh? You'll snort like a pig!


Hilarious - TimeOut.

www.rct-arts.co.uk



_________________________________________________________



Cash Spent On Privatising

NHS ‘Doubled’


Friday 13th January 2017
 by Lamiat Sabin


Purged Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn - before the present
boss grovelled to Zionists and quarantined him, revealed
how the huge amount of cash spent on privatising
parts of the NHS, has more than doubled,
under the Tories.

Mr Corbyn said: “The Conservatives are privatising
 our NHS by stealth, despite the repeated failures
 and costs of private provision.

“It saddles us with an expensive and unnecessary
internal market. It puts tax avoidance, not patient
 care, at the heart of its management. It also
 promotes excessive boardroom pay and
grotesque inequality.

“Health privateers are earning huge sums at
taxpayers’ expense, yet health workers are
 faced with a pay freeze.

“When health services are privatised, the brakes
 come off the pay - of the executives in charge.”

Health Emergency campaign director, John Lister,
 told the Star that it was “bizarre” how local clinical
 commissioning groups choose to divert cash into
 private companies, when investment needs to
 stay within the NHS.

He added: “Companies only want to pick up
profitable services such as elective care
and are not interested in taking the load
off under-pressure departments such
as A&Es.

“Despite the financial freeze, none of these firms
are making much money -- because the margins
 are small. It’s a pointless fracturing of the NHS.
The Health and Social Care Act 2012, was
 brought in by the Tories to facilitate this.”

Mr Corbyn says his new proposal would require
that no public-sector department or government
contracted firm, could pay top executives over
20 times the salary of the lowest-paid worker.

Patients and health workers are denied quality
 of care and sufficient resources -- because the
 pay of bosses in the sector skyrockets. He said
 that the policy “will apply to the private health
 companies who bid for NHS contracts and pay
 their top executives indefensible & sometimes
 obscene amounts.

“Shrinking the widening pay gap in health will
aid Labour’s plans to end health privatisation
 and bring services into a secure, publicly
 provided NHS.”

(source - Morning Star)


________________________________



How to select or reselect your MP

New edition by Dave Osland. £4 from left-wing
bookshops, or Five Leaves Bookshop, Notts.

Post free to mail order customers via
0115 8373097 or via PayPal on
 bookshop@fiveleaves.co.uk



Rhondda Records exists to express the Rhondda's
vision --- when it was confident, powerful, caring,
and socialist.

A Rhondda very aware
of the media's poisonous
tricks -- how they con working class people into
attacking each other, or racial groups, or, often,
even their best allies and friends... instead of
seeing their real enemies:--- an elite who hate
the very idea that working people can think,
create, or achieve a fairer society.

Thatcher said her proudest achievement was
Blair and New Labour - who parachuted in
careerists and expenses fiddlers - to stop
local Labour members having a say, and
who made genuine socialist MPs leave
the Labour party in disgust and many
members and voters to despair...
and the young to stop voting.

Jeremy Corbyn was always attacked because
he was trying to reverse all that New Labour
corruption --- that's why membership was
flooding in all over the UK - watch this
video in Kilburn, London: don't believe
the dripping poison of the media and
the corrupt MPs -- and understand
Jeremy's role !


______________________________________


press

March 22nd, 2018 
Karl Rogers Analysis, UK
Spread the word: Facebook Twitter

On 20 March, the Labour Party appointed Jennie Formby
as its new general secretary. The right-wing press
immediately attacked her appointment.

 Ignoring her formidable record as a union organiser and
work in the NEC, Formby has been represented as
Jeremy Corbyn’s puppet - and as evidence of his
 “hard-left” seizure of the Labour Party machine.
 
But it’s obvious why the press barons
are
running scared.

Media red scaremongering

Formby barely had time to update her Linkedin profile
and Twitter feed...  before the right-wing press came
gunning for her. Predictably, the billionaire-owned
 propaganda machine, spun the news of her
 appointment, as a sinister seizure of power
by Corbyn & Unite leader Len McCluskey.

The Telegraph ran the headline: Corbyn and McCluskey
 tighten grip on Labour party as ally Jennie Formby
 appointed party’s new general secretary. The
 Express went with: Corbyn cements grip on
Labour as hard-left union boss Formby
named general secretary. The Sun
also framed the appointment as
an imposed “hard-left” takeover
 of the Labour Party. And The
Times declared “moderates
are no longer welcome”
 in the Labour Party.

Heather Stewart, political editor of The Guardian,
termed the appointment a “coronation” and
declared it the culmination of Corbyn’s
“two-year battle” to gain “complete
 control of the party machine”.

She has been a member of the Labour Party for 40 years.

She was regional officer in the UK’s largest trade union
– Unite – for 17 years. In 2004, she became the national
officer for Unite’s Food, Drink, and Tobacco Sector.

Between 2013 and 2016, she was political director
 of Unite, before becoming the southeast regional
secretary. She has been on the NEC for
seven years.

In other words, her appointment to general secretary of
the Labour Party, is the result of her experience and
abilities as a trade union organiser.

As Corbyn said, when he congratulated Formby:

''Her talent, experience and commitment to the Labour
and Trade Union movement, makes me confident
she
will play a crucial role in building on last
year’s
inspiring General Election advance
and taking
our party forward to victory.''

Her predecessor, Iain McNicol, said:

''As someone who has dedicated her life to fighting for
workers’ rights, equality and social justice, I know
Jennie will put all the commitment, drive and
organising talent, into getting Labour into
government and Jeremy into Number 10.''

Running scared

The press is scared of Formby......
because
she will be good at her job.

Get Involved!

______________________________________________________



Jewish Labour Movement Chair & exec
block
call for investigation into Israeli
interference

5th of February 2017
by Mike Sivier

This is deeply disturbing information
 from the Skwawkbox. Read:

Riverside Labour MP Louise Ellman is Chair of the JLM
(Jewish Labour Movement) and vice-Chair of Labour
Friends of Israel (LFI). The former organisation is
highly controversial because of its affiliation with
 the openly pro-apartheid Israeli Labour Party
‘Havoda’ and the latter as it was specifically
mentioned by the Israeli
embassy operative
filmed by an
undercover Al Jazeera reporter,

 in connection with his actions: in setting up
pro-Israeli groups
inside the Labour party.


Supporters of both groups have been prominent
in the discredited, but persisting, antisemitism
smear against the national party.

And it appears that Ms Ellman and her allies in
 Riverside CLP – in spite of the obvious conflict
 of interest – have no intention of allowing
members to add their voices to the calls
for a full Labour investigation into the
 infiltration of the party by a foreign
 government.

Source: JLM Chair and exec block CLP call
for investigation into Israeli interference:

https://skwawkbox.org/2017/02/05/jlm-chair-
and-exec-block-clp-call-for-investigation-
into-israeli-interference/

________________________________________



REVEALED: NUS official colluded with
Israeli embassy to oust student leader
Middle East Eye

11/Jan/2017
by Mike Sivier
of Vox Political

The worms are coming out of the woodwork now.

Shall we pencil in the Union of Jewish Students
as one of Shai Masot’s “front” organisations for
 the Israeli government?

A senior official from the UK’s National
 Union of Students, has been covertly
filmed conspiring --- to oust the NUS
president Malia Bouattia as part of a
 sting involving the Israeli embassy.

An undercover Al-Jazeera reporter – known
only as Robin – posed as a political activist
with links to the now disgraced Israeli
diplomat Shai Masot - to investigate
 the influence the Israeli embassy
 exerts on British politics.

“Robin” is heard discussing how to oust
Ms Bouattia from her position as NUS
president with NUS Vice President
Richard Brooks --- after Masot
 introduces him as the Chair
of the Young Labour
Friends of Israel.


___________________________


RIGHTING THE
McNicol INJUSTICES


Ms Walker, a lifelong anti-racist campaigner and
 socialist, was suspended from the Labour Party
 in May, amidst allegations of anti-Semitism. She
was reinstated but has been suspended again, 
after apparently being “set up” at a training
event organised by the Jewish Labour
Movement during the party’s national
conference in September.

She writes: “I was suspended from the Labour Party
in May of this year, amidst what appears to have
been
a breach of Data Protection law, by Iain
McNicol, as
General Secretary of the
Labour Party.


“I was suspended for the alleged (subsequently
cleared) charge of antisemitism. As a Jewish
person, whose partner is Jewish, this was
heart-breaking.

“Since May I have continued to be targeted by
 the media, in print, online and in other places.

“Currently I am suspended for questions asked at
 a training session on ‘Confronting Antisemitism
& Engaging Jewish Voters’ at this year’s Labour
Conference, after being unethically filmed by a
 Jewish Labour Movement campaigns officer
who is also a Labour councillor. It seems this
training was not a ‘safe space for all Jews’
by any means.

“As soon as the first article was released before
my notification had even arrived, trolls circled
for
the kill, posting spooky blacked up faces
(and
worse) to my Facebook account. The
community
& national newspapers led the
attacks,
querying my Jewish identity (a
racist move
in itself), my work as an
anti-racist activist
and my political
commitment.


“When my suspension was lifted, things got worse.
Indignation at my alleged breach reached the heights
 of irony, when Nigel Farage, anxious not to miss out
on the fun being had by among others, the Spectator,
a number of Labour MPs and officers of the Party...
 dedicated an article in Breitbart, and a good
dose
of righteous indignation on national
TV, to
publicly calling me out as a racist.


“The widespread hate campaign against me, led
to public abuse, strangers shouting ‘racist’ as I
walked to the tube. With the murderous racist
political discourse now taking the place of
debate, I became conscious I was
recognisable on the street.

“My story is just one of many where Labour members
have found themselves in a similar position. While
 this may not be the only case where a breach has
 occurred, as I was abroad at the time, it may well
be the most provable.

“We invite anybody who has a personal interest
in this case, or the wider public, to contribute.”

Solicitor Martin Howe, representing Ms Walker,
added: “Jackie Walker has faced a barrage of
 hurtful, threatening & nasty abuse since the
 private details of her investigation by the
Labour Party over alleged anti-Semitism
was
leaked to the press before she even
knew
of her suspension by the Party.


“This apparent breach of her private data has
had a devastating impact on her public and
private well-being and has led directly to her
being pre-judged & unfairly cast as a racist
-- before she was given any opportunity to
tell
her side of the story.


“Data Protection laws are there to protect all
of us and any breach is a very serious matter.”

If you would like to contribute to her fund,
details are on the web page.

Source: CrowdJustice –
Crowdfund public interest law

Join the Vox Political Facebook page.

If you have appreciated this article, don’t forget
 to share it. Politics is about everybody – so
let’s
try to get everybody involved!



______________________________________


Get Involved!

– If you feel you’ve been ‘purged’,
take this online survey:

https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/857YMDK


or this one:

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSc0du5YuhPZ8ahI
oxC_b6pvBprm
GA4XFdG-0r2dOVYyc4UNFg/viewform?c=0&w=1



– Request all your own data that
the Labour Party holds on you:

http://www.labour.org.uk/pages/privacy


– Sign the petition in support of
Jeremy Corbyn, if you agree:

https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/a-vote-
of-confidence-in-jeremy-corbyn-after-brexit



_______________________________________




IF - YOU THINK you HAVE
BEEN UNFAIRLY BARRED:


“Any member who is suspended & intends
to appeal the decision should throw in a
 ‘Subject Access Request in accordance
with the Data Protection Act’ --- for ALL
 data that the Labour Party hold on them.

The Labour Party are Data Controllers and
 therefore have to, by law, provide you with
 all material/information they hold on you.”

If anyone is in contact with anyone who
was barred from voting --- please can
you pass this info on:

The Labour leadership election was under the
jurisdiction of the electoral reform services.

If you were unfairly deprived of your vote you
can call them on 0208 365 8909 and lodge
 your complaint, and inform them of your
Data Protection request.

https://www.electoralreform.co.uk

The notification letters barring new members
did not give a clear reason, or information on
how to appeal, so Vox Political suggests that
 anyone in this situation, could also contact
 Liz Davies here: http://www.whycantivote.com

She is a barrister --- who can
advise members on what to do.


**************************************


CHILCOT REPORT:
SOME MAIN POINTS:

1)  "Military action was not a last resort".

2) UK government "undermined the
authority"
of the UN security council.


3) Weapons of Mass Destruction presented
 "with a certainty that was not justified".

4) UK forces were "ill-prepared".

5a) "The government failed to
achieve its stated objectives."


5b) Post-war planning: Blair "should
 have known what might happen".

6) Chilcot says Blair also "overlooked the
 threat the invasion would pose to Britain."

____________________________________

Blair to Face Law

The former prime minister has been put on notice
 by families of dead servicemen, that he will face
 legal action, for his part in the illegal Iraq war.

They are being crowd-funded now, and
have raised so much money, that Blair
is
probably heading for a big fall...


Shadow Commons leader Paul Flynn:
the Iraq Inquiry's findings are an "utter
 condemnation" of his terrible decision
 --- and his prosecution should now be
given "serious consideration".

Former Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond:
"I would like to see Blair investigated by
the
International Criminal Court (ICC),
for
the crime of a war of aggression,
and
face parliamentary action to
stop
him holding public office
ever again."

A former British ambassador to the UN:
 "The UK was pushed into entering
this
military action, too early."

Stop the War Coalition Convener Ms German:
“This is an incredibly damning report for Tony Blair.
It will not call for legal sanctions, but it says that
Blair is culpable for the war, in many ways.

“He needs to be driven out of public life. He is
still part of the Labour Party. We need to make
 sure that truth & justice prevails. There must
 be legal action against Blair, & he should no
 longer be considered fit for any office.”

CND general secretary Kate Hudson:
 “The report shows that Tony Blair had
no respect for cabinet procedure, no
respect for Parliament, & no respect
for international law.

“Chilcot reveals the evidence that must now be
 used to bring Tony Blair to justice. This is our
 demand. Only when justice is served, can we
prevent disasters like the Iraq war from ever
happening again.”

 Iraqi journalist Juma al-Quraishi:
"Everyone who took part in the war against Iraq
should be condemned, either Britain, or others."

Baghdad resident Ali al-Saraji:
"Ex-UK prime minister, Tony Blair, destroyed
 our country. From 2003, to now, our country
has been the scene of destruction, killing,
massacres, explosions and sectarianism."

A defiant Blair refuses to accept accusations
 from service families that he was wrong and
reckless, and he insists that he would make
 the decision again, 'come what may'.

 Families of some of the 179 military personnel
 killed in Iraq, say the former PM is "a terrorist".

 Jeremy Corbyn has offered an apology,
 on Labour's behalf, for the "stain on
our party and our country".


____________________________________



Tony Blair: Guilty In The
 Eyes Of The Public
August 1st
by Steve Sweeney

Teflon Tony Blair escaped justice yet again yesterday -
after High Court judges blocked a private prosecution
against the former PM for war crimes over the
invasion of Iraq.

Campaigners accused the Establishment of a “concerted
 and coordinated effort” to exonerate Mr Blair for his role
 in the Iraq war, in which one million people were killed.

Stop the War Coalition convener Lindsey German branded
Mr Blair as “the most protected war criminal in the world.”
However, she said: “In the court of public opinion
he has
long been found guilty.”

Iraqi General Abdul Wahed Shannan al-Rabbat had sought
 a private prosecution against Mr Blair, along with then
foreign secretary Jack Straw and attorney general
 Lord Goldsmith.

He accused Mr Blair of committing a “crime of aggression”
 by invading Iraq in 2003 and his lawyers asked permission
 from the High Court to seek judicial review to get the
Supreme Court to overturn a 2006 House of Lords
ruling that there is no such crime under the law
 of England and Wales.

Gen al-Rabbat brought the case after Westminster magistrates
refused to issue summonses in November last year claiming
 the trio had immunity from prosecution for decisions taken
 while in government.

However the appeal was dismissed yesterday by the Lord
 Chief Justice as having “no prospect” of succeeding.

But Michael Mansfield QC said that the findings of the
Chilcot Report justified the prosecution of Mr Blair.

He said that the inquiry showed Saddam Hussein did not
pose an urgent threat to British interests and that the
 intelligence regarding weapons of mass destruction
 had been presented with “unwarranted certainty.”

The QC said that as the international crime of a war of
aggression had been accepted at the time of the
Nuremberg trials of nazi war crimes, it was the
duty of British courts to follow the example
and prosecute those responsible for the
 Iraq war.

The Nuremberg judges had said that war “is essentially
 an evil thing. Its consequences are not confined to the
 belligerent states alone, but affect the whole world.

“To initiate a war of aggression, therefore, is not only an
international crime; it is the supreme international crime
differing only from other war crimes in that it contains
within itself the accumulated evil of the whole.”

Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament general secretary
Kate Hudson branded the decision as “hugely
disappointing” and said that “justice had
been left undone.”

She said: “Last year’s Chilcot report showed that Blair
had no respect for Cabinet procedure, no respect for
Parliament and no respect for international law.

“Iraq was devastated by the war Blair led Britain into,
 millions of innocent Iraqis were killed, British
soldiers
were killed and terrorism has
spread across the
Middle East.


“Chilcot revealed the evidence that must now be used
 to bring Blair to justice. Only when justice is served
can we prevent disasters like the Iraq war from
happening again.”

(Source - Morning Star)

_______________________________


PONCY LABOUR MPS PROBLEM?

A huge drop in working-class Labour MPs,
caused a massive drop in support among
 voters with similar backgrounds, reveals
 research seeking to explain why support
has dwindled in the party’s heartlands.

The study says past leaders like Kinnock
 and Blair made a concerted effort to pick
 “more and more middle-class candidates
to run for office, during the 80s and 90s,
 as part of an effort to rebrand” -- which
had initial successes at the ballot box.

But this “conscious electoral strategy”
stored up problems, as working-class
 voters who initially, just didn’t vote in
response, now seek an alternative.

The solution? Trust each constituency to put
forward its own candidates, and don't impose
 ‘party-approved’ choices who can't do the job.


Now, unfortunately, there are "entryist"  MPs who, for
decades, have been groomed by CIA cold war relic
organisations -- like the Atlantic Council -- and are
now trying to misdirect the Labour Party towards
cuts, a militarised police, and a US war agenda...

- and their anti-Corbyn slant is hobbling Labour.


‘How Can I Deselect My Labour MP?’ A Short Guide
to Reselection and Democratic Accountability
by Eric Sim, excellent free advice here:

http://novaramedia.com/2016/07/13/how-can-i-
deselect-my-labour-mp-a-short-guide-to-
reselection-and-democratic-accountability/


CHRIS BRYANT - SUPPORT THE MEMBERS'

LEADERSHIP CHOICE & POLICIES - OR GO!

Chris Bryant, the Rhondda's dodgy MP,
was on TV -- as soon as the PLP coup
started -- telling us that Jeremy MUST
go, because it was the ONLY way to
act in the Labour Party's interest...


Chris Bryant's voting record:
from TheyWorkForYou.com

On Tuition Fees:

On 27 Jan 2004:
Chris Bryant voted in favour of university tuition
fees increasing from £1,125 per year, to up to
£3,000 per year.

On 31 Mar 2004:
Chris Bryant voted to allow university tuition fees
 to increase from £1,125 per year, to up to £3,000
 per year.

On 31 Mar 2004:
Chris Bryant voted for the introduction of variable
university tuition fees (top-up fees) of up to £3,000
per year in place of the previous fixed fee of £1,250
per year.

On 31 Mar 2004:
Chris Bryant voted to allow university tuition fees
to increase from £1,125 per year to up to £3,000
per year, and to make other changes to higher
education funding and regulation arrangements.

On 14 Sep 2004:
Chris Bryant voted against: the immediate abolition
 of all tuition fees, the re-introduction of maintenance
grants of up to £2,000 for students from low-income
homes, and changes to the country's higher
education system.

On 14 Sep 2004:
Chris Bryant voted to reject the Liberal
Democrat policy of abolition of tuition fees.

On 25 May 2016:
Chris Bryant was absent for a vote on Queen's
Speech - Forcing Schools to Become Academies
- Further Rises in University Tuition Fees


On Human Rights:

Consistently voted for introducing ID cards

Almost always voted for requiring the mass
retention of information about communications

Generally voted for mass surveillance of
people’s communications and activities


On the Environment:

Generally voted against greater regulation
 of hydraulic fracturing (fracking) to extract
 shale gas


On Special Interests:

Almost always voted against limits
 on success fees paid to lawyers in
no-win no fee cases

Generally voted against a
statutory register of lobbyists


On War or Peace:

Generally voted for use of UK military
 forces in combat operations overseas

Consistently voted for the Iraq war

Consistently voted against an
 investigation into the Iraq war

Generally voted for replacing Trident
 with a new nuclear weapons system

On 2 Dec 2015:
Voted to support UK airstrikes in Syria
[without UN authorisation]

On 2 Dec 2015:
Voted to support UK airstrikes in Syria
[without UN authorisation]


On Independence:

Generally voted for more EU integration

____________________________
   

Chris Bryant Labour MP
From Wikipedia

(aka 1962-1986: Mr Christopher John Bryant
1986-1991: The Reverend Christopher John
Bryant, 1991-2001: Mr Christopher John
Bryant, 2001-: Mr Christopher John
Bryant MP.)

Born in Cardiff, to a Scottish mother & a Welsh
 father, Bryant grew up in Cardiff, Wales (where
 his father worked for 5 years), and Cheltenham.

He was educated at Cheltenham College, an
independent school for boys in the spa town
of Cheltenham in Gloucestershire, where he
was captain of the school swimming team,
and Mansfield College at the University of
Oxford, where he graduated in 1983, with
 a Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree in English.
 This was later promoted to a Master of
Arts degree (MA (Oxon)), as per tradition.

After completing his first degree, Bryant began
 training to be a priest in the Church of England
at Ripon College, Cuddesdon, in Oxfordshire.
There, he obtained a degree in theology.

Although a member of the Conservative
 Party, and an elected office-holder in the
 Oxford University Conservative Association,
he joined the Labour Party in 1986, after
leaving Oxford.

He was ordained deacon in 1986 and priest in
1987. He served as a Curate at the Church of
 All Saints, High Wycombe, from 1986 to 1989;
then as a Youth Chaplain in Peterborough,
as well as travelling in Latin America.

In 1991 Bryant left the ordained ministry, after
deciding that being gay and being a priest,
were incompatible. Statements made by
 Richard Harries, then Bishop of Oxford,
 also influenced his decision.

After leaving the priesthood in 1991, Bryant
worked as the election agent to the Holborn
 and St Pancras Constituency Labour Party,
 where he helped Frank Dobson hold his seat
 in the 1992 general election.

From 1993, he was Local Government officer
for the Labour Party; he lived in Hackney and
 was elected to Hackney Borough Council in
1993, serving until 1998. He became Chair of
the Christian Socialist Movement.

 He is both a member of the Labour Friends
 of Israel and Labour Friends of Palestine &
 the Middle East. From 1994 to 1996 he was
 London manager of the leader-grooming
 "charity", Common Purpose.

 He was Labour candidate for Wycombe, in the
 1997 general election (he lost by 2,370 votes),
and Head of European Affairs for the BBC,
from 1998.

His selection for the very safe Labour seat of
Rhondda, South Wales in 2000, shocked many
 people given Bryant's background – gay, an ex-
Anglican vicar, and someone who was a Tory,
while studying at Oxford, and a member now,
of the Henry Jackson Society 'think tank' ---
 described by The Guardian newspaper as
 'neoconservative'. It is pro-US, pro-NATO
and pro-military intervention, as well as
being fundamentally anti-socialist.

 Fifty-two people applied for the candidature
and a local councillor was hot favourite to
 win, before Bryant was parachuted in.

In 2004, a photograph of Mr Bryant in his
 underpants, which he had posted to a gay
 dating website, was published in 'papers.

When an interviewer suggested he was
 a 'disgrace to the Rhondda', he replied:
"They can't get rid of me."


His pay, allowances and some expenses:

The basic annual salary for an MP, from
April 1st, 2016 is £74,962.  MPs also get
 expenses: to cover the costs of running
 an office, employing staff, having some-
where to live in London, plus, in their
constituency and travelling between
 Parliament and their constituency.


His MP's expenses story:

Chris Bryant changed second home
 twice to claim £20,000: the deputy
leader of the House of Commons,
 "flipped" his second home twice,
 in 2 years, allowing him to claim
 almost £20,000 for renovations
 and fees.

Chris Bryant, MP for the Rhondda, split over
 £92,000 of expenses between 3 properties
 in Wales and London --- within five years.

In 2004, he attempted to claim £58,000 to
 overhaul his second home in Wales, after
allegedly complaining that properties in
his constituency were "terrace or mine
 owners' houses".

Mr Bryant, a former Church of England clergyman,
wanted the money for a new bathroom & kitchen,
 and to demolish his conservatory. He'd bought the
 detached house for £97,500, under a year earlier.

 He submitted a claim to the Commons fees office for
 £58,493.26 --- almost 3 times the annual maximum.
 He noted that the claim exceeded his allowance.

His alleged justification was disclosed... in
 correspondence between Commons officials.
 By email, an official wrote: "He had problems
finding a suitable property because in the
Rhondda there is a choice mainly of terraced
 property or mine owners' houses." When
approached by the Daily Telegraph,
Mr Bryant said: "I have never said
 or thought anything of the sort".

 In all, he successfully claimed over £13,000
 for renovations, repairs & appliances, in 2004.
Along with other bills, his annual claim was
 £20,902.

In April 2005, he flipped his expenses to his flat in
 west London, which he bought for £400,000 in April
 2002. He also claimed £630 a month for mortgage
 interest, along with other bills. After claiming over
 £3,600 over 3 months, he sold the flat in July 2005
 for £477,000.

Mr Bryant used his profits to buy a more expensive
 flat in west London, which was valued at £670,000.
 He immediately flipped his second home expenses
 there, claiming almost £6,400 in stamp duty, legal
fees and mortgage fees, incurred in the purchase.

He then began claiming interest of £1,000 a month
on the mortgage. He also claimed a further £6,000
 a year for the flat's service charge and ground rent.

In all, he claimed £92, 415 in second
home expenses, from 2004 to 2009.

Mr Bryant said at the time: "I moved flat in
 London, so as to be closer to Parliament."

Research by Channel 4 News in 2015 found that
at least 46 MPs had this kind of system in place
– a move one Labour backbencher described as
“a new fiddle”. Channel 4 reported then:

“Our investigation found that many of the MPs
 bought their London properties with the help of
the taxpayer, when a previous expenses system
 allowed them to claim back mortgage payments.
But when those claims were banned, following
 the expenses scandal, they switched to letting
out their properties, in some cases for up to
 £3,000 a month. They then started claiming
 expenses for rent and hotels in the capital.”

Among those identified was Chris Bryant, shadow
leader of the House of Commons. He had already
 bought a penthouse in London back in 2005 and
 claimed around £1,000 a month in mortgage
claims under the old system.

But after the expenses scandal, he started renting
the property out. It’s since been advertised by estate
 agents as having a private lift and a porter, with rent
 at about £3,000 a month. Meanwhile, Bryant moved
 into a new flat;- claiming his own rent on expenses.


Wales elderly paying for health care

Figures released by The Office for National Statistics
(ONS) reveal that UK pensioners are 4th worst off....
out of all of the countries in the European Union.

_______________________________________
 
UK breakup? Welsh
independence
 more popular
than ever
April 8th, 8:56pm  (Press TV)
 
New polls suggest that support for Welsh independence 
from the UK is at an all time high. This has created fear 
in Downing Street, over the real threat of a Kingdom 
breakup, with the Welsh parliament elections on 
the way. 
 
The idea of a Welsh breakaway from the United 
Kingdom is high on the agenda, ahead of this 
year's Welsh elections.
 
With the country’s biggest pro-independence party 
Plaid Cymru, pledging to secure a vote on Welsh 
independence within the next five years.
 
The idea of Wales going alone has traditionally been 
an obscure viewpoint, however, since Brexit, public 
support for an independence vote has skyrocketed.
 
One poll conducted this year actually suggested that 
Welsh support for independence, could be as high 
as 39 percent, that would be the highest level 
ever recorded.
 
No.10 has reportedly become very aware of the growing 
anti-Westminster sentiment outside of England, and are
 drawing up plans to counter the trend.
 
The Welsh elections are taking place in May. Plaid Cymru 
have been recording great successes in past votes, and
 hopes are high of major gains.
 
Although support for independence is not yet near a 
majority view, Westminster’s poor handling of the 
coronavirus crisis, and the negative effects 
Brexit has had for Wales, appears to have 
created greater belief in the virtues of 
self-government. With Scotland also 
pushing hard for a UK divorce... 
No.10’s concerns are growing
 as fast as Welsh patriotism.
 
 
____________________________

 
Hello darkness my old friend
...Peter Mandelson is back 
advising Labour, why not 
just go the whole hog & 
bring back Tony Blair?
by Chris Sweeney
February 15th (RT)
 
Chris Sweeney is an author and columnist who has written 
for newspapers such as The Times, Daily Express, The 
Sun and Daily Record, along with several international-
selling magazines. Follow him on Twitter
@Writes_Sweeney
 
 
Keir Starmer is so devoid of original ideas he is bringing back 
the Prince of Darkness to help him crowbar his way into 
Number 10, but if the plan is Blair 2.0, why settle for an 
impersonator when the original is still available?
 
Lord Peter Mandelson is not a name that will resonate beyond
 the UK, but he is one of Britain’s most infamous spin doctors. 
The type of character who has seemingly exerted an extended
 sphere of influence without it ever being clear exactly what he 
does. He arrived into the Labour Party in 1985 and it’s now 
been revealed he is still pulling strings today, 36 years later.
 
Tony Blair adored his style but some of the left-wing union 
devotees had no time for the man who became known as 
‘The Prince of Darkness’. So, to appease them, and to 
keep his involvement in Blair’s leadership campaign 
secret, he was issued a code name – 'Bobby'. 
 
Since then, he’s inhabited a range of roles; minister without 
portfolio, secretary of state for Northern Ireland, European
 commissioner, business secretary --- and then Baron 
Mandelson as he entered the House of Lords. After 
Blair left - and was replaced by Gordon Brown - 
Mandelson retained an iron-grip on the levers 
of power. In that period, he was a member of 
35 cabinet committees, and some referred 
to him as the “unelected prime minister.”
 
Mandelson likes a frontman, a lead singer to shield him while 
he writes the lyrics. So it’s business as usual now that’s he 
back in alongside current Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer. 
There is only a decade or so in age between the two, but
 the level of experience in the dark arts of politics, is 
heavily tipped in Mandelson’s favour. The notoriety
 is why he chooses to remain in the shadows, as a 
lot of voters detest him. He represents the back-
room dealmaking and media manipulation that
 turns so many off politics.
 
Mandelson is like a lightning rod, he takes the surge and 
allows his ‘stooge’ to carry on. He ended up in the public 
court of shame, for spending a New Year’s Eve, on Paul 
Allen’s yacht, while Microsoft was at the centre of an 
EU investigation.
 
Another yacht trip got him in hot water, this time,
with 
oligarch Oleg Deripaska, as Mandelson had
been 
part of a decision to cut aluminium tariffs.
At the 
time, Deripaska owned United Company
Rusal, 
one of the world’s biggest producers of
the metal.
 
Mandelson was also friendly with Jeffery Epstein,
 and has been pictured with the disgraced financier. 
 
So for Keir Starmer to bring in a man with that amount of 
baggage, proves how desperate he must be. Starmer 
replaced Jeremy Corbyn - the most socialist main-
stream figure seen in British politics for decades - 
but has as yet done nothing of substance. He's a 
more centrist figure, but Boris has that sewn up:
 he won the last election, with an affirming 80-
seat majority. The so-called Red Wall, fell to 
the Conservatives, proving that the working 
class heartlands, no longer had faith in 
their old ally Labour. And still there’s 
no spark or idea from Labour, to 
turn that around.
 
Since Blair left office, the party hasn’t won an election. Their
 last victory was in 2005 and before Blair led them to victory
 in 1997 they hadn’t won an election since 1974. Blair is the 
only person who has led the Labour Party to victory in the 
last 47 years, and it seems they’ve simply decided to 
revert to what worked then and hope it does now.
 
So welcome back Mandelson, who is right in his sweet spot, 
without an official position but is there to “broaden the party’s
 appeal.” It seems a redundant mission, as you’re asking 
Mandelson to recreate the old magic. For that, he needs 
his protege and the man who brought those ideas to life
 – Blair. Why bother trying to copy him, when he is still 
out there, sitting around not doing very much? Blair 
has been quite vocal and made quite a few public 
interjections into the Covid-19 effort. It was his 
idea to stagger the two vaccine doses, which 
Britain and other countries are now 
actually doing. 
 
If Labour's desperation is so great they need to face facts. 
Starmer is keen to paint himself as a paragon of the good 
and just. He created a big spectacle over the investigation
 into anti-Semitism within Labour and also fired a member 
of his shadow cabinet for making a remark that was
 judged to slight the Jewish faith.  
 
Starmer’s previous profession was as a barrister where he 
worked on human rights cases before becoming a QC and 
the Director of Public Prosecutions. He also spoke out 
and protested against the Iraq war. 
 
Yes, the same war that Blair led Britain into, after years of 
working with Mandelson. So if Starmer is so willing to 
embrace Mandelson, is he really as principled and 
motivated by integrity as he’d like to have us think?
 
All of this also reflects an extremely depressing facet to 
British politics. The country has suffered the most 
deaths in Europe due to incompetent leadership.
 
The list of ludicrous decisions has been recounted many
 times and if the opposition cannot muster up a feasible 
counter after all these months, they really are 
beyond hope.
 
The vaccination rollout is the only thing Boris has handled 
well, but it won’t erase the number of families left to rue the 
unnecessary loss of loved ones. There is also the much-
covered resurgence in support for independence in 
Scotland and a growing movement in Wales. Brexit 
was another shambles, with a deal agreed days 
before everything went into meltdown. How is it 
possible that an allegedly well-run, professional, 
perceptive political party ,can’t muster up a 
credible opposition?
 
Winding the clock back 20 years and hoping that the same 
things will work is, in my view, a fantasy. Society and 
attitudes have changed, there was no social media 
in 1997 and simply looking plausible and playing
 'Things Can Only Get Better' on a loop isn’t 
going to win you 80+ seats. But let us 
suppose, for a minute, that it might, 
if the Labour party & it’s leadership 
really believe that’s their greatest 
hope and the best plan they have 
for the British people is New 
Labour 2.0, then why isn’t 
Blair involved?
 
Starmer talks a bit like him, has a similar presence, they were 
even both barristers before entering politics, but trying to 
‘out Blair’ Blair is futile. If Starmer isn't able to lead and 
create his own vision, then why did he put himself
up 
for the job? Trying to get Peter Mandelson to 
Svengali you into some sort of Blair tribute act
is never going to work. As Queen fans
 know,
Adam Lambert, is no substitute for 
Freddie Mercury.
 
Step up or step aside, don’t be a down-
market 
copy of your predecessor.
 
Think your friends would be interested? 
 
Share this story!
 
 
_________________________________


Boris Defends Bully Patel
but Not Pensioners –
 His
Govt is Morally Repugnant
by Tommy Sheridan
22/11/2020  (Source - Sputnik)


Anyone surprised by BoJo’s decision to condone shameful bullying at
 the heart of his government and order a “square” of defence be formed
 “around the prittster” after he decided to keep Priti Patel in his cabinet
 despite her being found guilty of breaching the Ministerial Code and
 bullying, has plainly been sleeping over the past eleven months.


That period has exposed the rancid hypocrisy, corruption, cronyism, 
and lack of integrity which characterises Johnson and the Tories 
under his leadership.


Priti Patel was accused of disgraceful conduct and bullying while an 
employment Minister under Theresa May in 2015, behaviour which 
drove a female civil servant to attempt suicide on at least two 
occasions and ended with a Department of Work & Pensions
 pay-out of £25,000 in April 2017 to avoid the scrutiny of an 
Employment Tribunal for unfair dismissal, harassment, 
discrimination, and victimisation.


Patel the Bully Became Patel the Liar


Patel was then moved to the role of International Secretary only to be
 found out as a devious liar whom May had to sack after her deliberate
 misleading of the PM and Parliament over secret meetings with Israeli 
officials, business representatives and lobbyists was exposed. She
 lied and was caught. She had to go.


Being a dishonest bully presented no barrier to Boris Johnson’s 
cabinet however and he appointed Patel as his Home Secretary 
in July 2019 after he became Tory leader.


Within weeks the top civil servant in the Home Office, Sir Philip Rutnam, 
felt compelled to warn her about her conduct and lack of respect for 
staff before eventually resigning from his post at the end of February
 this year in a move which caused shock waves in the civil service 
and government. He accused Patel of lying about a “vicious” 
campaign orchestrated against him and creating a climate 
of fear in her department.


Patel Investigation Handicapped from the Outset


A high-level investigation was reluctantly ordered into the allegations
 made by Rutnam, and he vowed to pursue a constructive dismissal 
claim against the government which is yet to be concluded. It is 
increasingly clear that the investigation has been less than 
rigorous as the senior civil servant appointed to conduct 
it was refused access to Rutnman despite him being the 
best equipped to inform the investigation. 


However the report that was compiled was laid on Johnson’s desk 
in April and he refused to act on it for months before recently 
contacting the author, Sir Alex Allan, and leaning on him to 
water down the conclusions. Despite the limited access to 
witnesses the investigation still found Priti Patel "shouted 
and swore" at staff in actions "that can be described 
as bullying" and that she had indeed breached the 
Ministerial Code which is normally an automatic 
resignation offence.


The fact Sir Alex Allan, former chair of the prestigious Joint 
Intelligence Committee, chose to resign rather than alter his
 report to save Patel’s reputation is admirable, but the full 
report is being kept secret. It must be revealed in full and 
the fact it was severely handicapped by the barring of 
access to Rutman’s input must also be highlighted.


Johnson Willing to Protect Patel
but not Pensioners in Care Homes

Patel was ordered to issue an apology on camera on Friday but all
 it did was rub salt in the wounds of the campaign against bullying
 as she smugly smirked and smiled when she claimed to have no
 knowledge of bullying but apologised anyway. Please watch and
 remember - her conduct drove a lowly paid civil servant to 
attempt suicide on two occasions and compelled a very 
senior civil servant to resign. The lack of contrition for 
her actions and empathy for her victims is truly
 frightening.


If Johnson and his Tory gang of millionaires and spivs showed an iota 
of the concern and commitment to defend elderly care residents as
they have shown to defend lying bully Patel at least 20,000 lives 
could have been saved. A shocking report compiled by Amnesty
 International last month received very little media attention but 
condemned the Tory Covid19 response as a dereliction of duty 
and care towards elderly citizens.


Read the document and understand just how complicit this Tory
 government is in the deaths of thousands of senior citizens. It 
presents evidence that the government’s policy of herd immunity
 was responsible for mass murder. The government was entirely 
aware of the probable outcome of their policy and went ahead
 regardless of the risk to thousands of lives.


The report, “As if expendable: The UK government’s failure to protect 
older people in care homes during the Covid-19 pandemic”, details 
how, between March 2 and June 12, 18,562 residents of care homes
 in England died with COVID-19. The vast majority (18,168) were 
aged 65 and over, representing almost 40 percent of all deaths 
involving the virus in England during this time frame. Of these, 
76 percent (13,844 deaths) occurred within care homes for
 the elderly.


During this brief period, 28,186 “excess deaths” were recorded
 in English care homes, a 46 percent increase in comparison 
with the same period over previous years.


Amnesty conclude that the Tory government together with its 
agencies at national and local level have “taken decisions and 
adopted policies during the Covid-19 pandemic that have directly
 violated the human rights of older residents of care homes in
 England—notably their right to life, their right to health, and 
their right to non-discrimination”.


The report argues that the decisions and policies of the Tory
 government “impacted the rights of care home residents to 
private and family life, and may have violated their right not 
to be subjected to inhuman or degrading treatment”.


Johnson was determined to “form a square around the prittster”
 to defend his lying bully Patel at the Home Office but didn’t lift a 
finger to defend thousands of pensioners in care homes. That is
 the warped and putrid priorities which define this government.


A Litany of Government Failures but No Resignations
Their top advisor broke lockdown rules but there was no resignation.


They have been caught awarding contracts worth over £20 billion of 
public money without proper scrutiny or tendering processes to
 friends of senior Tories and companies known to donate to the 
Tory party and no one has resigned.


The UK government’s late response to Covid-19 and failure to 
impose lockdown measures caused the unnecessary deaths 
of 20,000 --- but no one resigned from government.
International law will be broken because of the government’s
 Internal Market Bill --- but no one resigns.


The Johnson government backs bullies, liars, public contract 
cheats and international law breaking. It is morally repugnant 
and thoroughly incompetent. No wonder Scotland is so keen 
to break away as soon as possible.
_________________________________________________


Report: Patients Discharged from 
UK Hospitals without COVID Test Results
October 28th, 2020 (FNA)


Almost half of hospital patients have been discharged 
without receiving the results of their coronavirus test 
– including some patients who were sent to care 
homes, new research revealed.


Independent national patient body Healthwatch England 
said it had learned many patients were discharged from 
hospitals between March and August this year without 
proper assessments with many vulnerable people sent 
home without medication, equipment or the care they 
needed, The Independent reported.


At the start of the pandemic thousands of patients were 
discharged to care homes as NHS England instructed 
hospitals to free up 15,000 beds ahead of the first 
wave of coronavirus.


Approximately 25,000 patients were sent to care homes 
with some not tested, sparking fears this helped seed 
care homes with the virus. There have been around 
16,000 care home deaths linked to COVID-19.


According to a survey of almost 600 discharged patients 
and interviews with 60 NHS staff, Healthwatch England 
said it had found serious flaws with the way hospitals 
had followed NHS England’s instructions.


In joint research with the British Red Cross, shared with 
The Independent, it found that 44 percent of patients were 
discharged without knowing the result of their corona-
virus test - including some to care homes.


It said, “Despite the policy stating that all patients 
discharged to a care home should be tested for 
COVID-19, we found that 26 percent of our 
survey respondents who were discharged 
to a care home were not tested.”


While the numbers involved were small, only 13 out of 50 
patients, the report added that this was “still a significant 
proportion of people who were required to be tested 
but did not receive one”.


Healthwatch added that while patients going to care homes 
must have the results available and shared with the home
it was still not national policy to test everyone being 
discharged. It argued this should now be an 
''ambition'' for the government.


Its report also raises concerns about the wider care 
of vulnerable patients sent home from hospital.


88 percent of patients reported having care needs 
after being discharged that have still not been met.  


82 per cent did not receive a visit or any
assessment from a health professional


Almost one in five of those who did not 
receive a visit, reported unmet needs.


In total 45 percent of people with a disability and 
20 percent of people with a long-term condition 
had support needs that were not being met, 
following their discharge.  


Healthwatch England criticised the national discharge 
policy put in place by NHS bosses, as “confusing” in 
places which it said may have contributed to some 
patients missing out on the care they needed.


Robert Francis QC, chair of Healthwatch England, said, 
“In March, hospitals were asked to discharge patients 
with little or no notice and the speed with which this 
took place was important, but led to mistakes."


“We do not want to detract from the heroic efforts of
t
hose on the frontline, who often put themselves at 
great risk to care for their patients, but services 
and system leaders have now had more time 
to prepare," he said.


“It’s essential that we learn from what people have 
shared with us about the impact that a poorly 
handled discharge can have on them and 
their loved ones. Taking action now will 
not only reduce the risk to patients but 
will also help improve the way people 
leave hospital in the future,” he added.


The British Red Cross and Healthwatch England said 
assessments for patients needed to be prioritised.


They also called for discharge checklists to make 
sure patients were asked if they needed help with 
transport and equipment.


Other recommendations included making sure carers 
and patients had a single contact for support, which 
was already national policy but still not fully adopted.


The report also said community services needed 
to be boosted, to cope with increased demands.


British Red Cross Chief Executive Mike Adamson said, 
“We’ve seen first-hand the huge efforts made to 
improve the discharge process for patients and 
their families. However, we also know, despite 
good intentions and hard work, there are still 
barriers to making the ideals of discharge 
policy a reality."


“The Red Cross has been bearing witness to these 
issues for years, and we hope that the increased 
urgency of the situation will bring lasting change. 
Many of the people we support are older or more 
vulnerable, & fall into the higher-risk categories
 for COVID-19," Adamson said.


“Simple interventions, like getting equipment and 
medicine delivered, or follow-up visits, can make 
the difference between a good recovery or some-
one regressing to the point of readmission - 
precisely at the time we want people to 
stay well, and stay at home,” he said.


Professor Stephen Powis, NHS national medical director, 
said, “There has long been a wide consensus about the 
benefits for patients of being able to return home as 
soon as their specialist hospital care is complete, 
and it is good that delays have been reduced in 
recent times. While this is a very small snap-
shot survey, local hospitals will want* (sic) 
to take account of the points it makes.”


 (*No they won't!)


_________________________________________
 
By backing housing charity’s
‘Jewish only’ rule, 
UK court drops
the ball. Aren’t we all equal in Britain?
by Chris Sweeney October 17th, 2020 (Source: RT)
A small legal challenge has turned into a precedent-
setting case about whether someone in today’s 
Britain can be prioritised or denied housing on 
the basis of their religion.The law isn’t always 
right and it’s not just people who can be 
taken hostage.


In a disgraceful decision deemed legitimate by the UK’s
 highest court, a single mother with four children was 
refused social housing – because she wasn’t a Jew.
It’s that simple. 
The charity Agudas Israel Housing Association (AIHA) 
owns 470 houses in the London borough of Hackney.
 Local authorities promised, in October 2017, the 
next available home to the woman and her kids, 
two of whom are autistic.


AIHA refused to hand over the keys to any 
of its SIX four-bedroom, unoccupied flats.


Their argument was it makes offers “only to members 
of the Orthodox Jewish community.” As Britain is a 
secular nation, the woman’s legal team found this 
claim astonishing and argued it had the same 
sentiment as the ‘No Dogs, No Blacks, No Irish’ 
signs that were once displayed in some pubs. 


Lord Sales stated the charity’s use of positive discrimination 
was lawful, under the Equality Act 2010, in order to correct 
the disadvantage faced by the community. The issue 
apparently was not racism, but discrimination on 
the grounds of religious observance. The court 
considered the “widespread and increasing 
overt antisemitism in our society.”


Intolerance or hate speech of any form is unacceptable. 
But it’s hard to believe the courts and public reaction 
would have been the same, if this had been Islam or 
a group of Pashtuns from the Iranian border region.


Jewish affairs are treated differently. There's a 'kid gloves' 
approach and they’re deemed to be culturally valuable, 
while other communities are sometimes dismissed as 
interlopers. AIHA’s founder Ita Cymerman-Symons, 
speaking last year about the legal action, offered 
the view: “Which non-Jewish person, honestly 
speaking, wants to live in the midst of a 
building full of Haredi men with all the 
beards, and all the chanting on a 
Friday night and all the children?”


A homeless single mother with four children 
for one, along with many others.


Plenty of people in social housing endure noisy neighbours, 
potent cooking smells and screaming kids. But isn’t that 
wonderful? Diversity and living cheek by jowl with 
people who see, think and believe different
things 
to you.


That’s a rich learning experience for anyone.


The fallacy of the AIHA’s superiority complex of viewing 
Orthodox Jews above others is, every public service is 
available to their members. And, of the charity’s 2019 
income of £105,710, the sum of £39,716 came from 
British government grants. They won’t be stone-
walled at hospital or refused entry on a bus, so 
why should they be allowed to create their 
small-minded kingdom with impunity?


These Jewish community leaders seem to be shutting out 
anyone who doesn’t align with their beliefs. It’s unhealthy 
and depressing, especially in a multicultural metropolis 
like London.


The judgement also referenced issues that Orthodox Jews 
don’t like to live outside of the Stamford Hill area and they 
tend to be poorer than the wider Jewish community. Many 
of us would prefer not to live outside of the millionaire’s 
playgrounds of Kensington, Knightsbridge and Mayfair – 
but we tend to be poorer, so can’t afford it. That doesn’t 
mean the courts would support us founding the 
Republic of Poverty Housing Association, and 
letting us administer who can move in.


Even if we concede that Orthodox Jews appear to support 
AIHA’s ghetto-isation, aren’t the courts supposed to rule 
for the greater good? It makes no sense to encourage 
people to live in self-imposed enclaves. How are they 
going to progress in life, or do they never plan to 
leave the streets around their homes?


There’s also a wider impact of the judgement. It raises the 
hackles of the population. It hacks away at the concept of 
respecting every other citizen. The far-right will jump on 
this and sadly there’s no defence. It will birth more 
discontentment and raise tensions. 


The law lords have dropped the ball, because they are the 
highest court in the land, they had the chance to set a 
precedent. They seem to have been influenced by 
Jewish sensitivity, that labels anyone who 
disagrees with the faith an anti-Semite.
 It’s hard to see how justice, fairness, 
compassion and understanding are 
applicable. But superiority, tokenism 
and favouritism have been advanced.


Why?


Well one of the court’s final points was AIHA was "a small 
housing provider, but similar discrimination by a larger one 
might not be allowed.”


We’re all equal, right?

Chris Sweeney is an author and columnist who has 
written for newspapers such as The Times, Daily 
Express, The Sun and Daily Record, along with 
several international-selling magazines. Follow 
him on Twitter @Writes_Sweeney



______________________________________




Brits should be ashamed of the casual cruelty 
we show towards over-60s, and shrugging it 
off as ‘banter’, does nothing to excuse it.
by Damian Wilson
9th October, 2020
Two-thirds of UK over-60s say they have been abused in 
public because of their age, with a fifth saying insults 
come from within their own families. It seems the 
idea that we should ‘respect our elders’, is no 
longer in fashion.
We live in a society where everyone just loves to talk 
about ‘respect.’ Even primary school children are 
indoctrinated with the concept, told they are due 
it by right and can demand it from others, if it’s 
not forthcoming. It’s all one-way traffic.
That’s why, as they grow older, and insist on enforcing 
their entitlement, it becomes increasingly evident that 
while they assume that right is a given for them, they 
actually don’t give a toss about it applying to 
anyone else.
Every now and then, research will put this into sharp relief, 
as is shown in the results of a survey undertaken by the 
University of the Third Age (u3a). The study found that 
the more senior members of society, basically those 
aged 60 and over, are frequently insulted by younger 
people, and they don’t like it.
Clueless Millennials, Zoomers and even Gen X’ers told the 
u3a pollsters that they don’t mean anything by slinging 
ageist insults, they were simply being “friendly” and 
the name-calling was just “banter.” Everyone 
does it.
The growing tendency of young people to airily dismiss their 
elders as over the hill old fogeys, and to even insult them in 
public because of their age, is not ‘banter,’ it’s insulting 
and rude.
The misuse of ‘bants’ as a term is one of modern life’s 
great irritations, because while young people have 
co-opted the word to (mis)represent the sort of 
behaviour that borders on bullying, with a thin 
coating of vicious humour, they are 
deeply mistaken.
Banter, in its traditional form, is an exchange between 
two people, a battle of wits, a game of intellectual 
ping-pong, like those nerdy folk on Channel 4 panel 
shows. Usually, those engaging in banter finish 
their jousting with a smug, self-congratulatory 
smile. It’s showing off, it’s proving how clever
you are. It’s not calling someone an old fart 
and shoving them out of the way.
Where’s the give and take, or clever verbal sparring, in 
a teenager shouting at an elderly woman in the street, 
“You dozy old biddy, move it!”. Or standing behind a 
chap of a certain age at a shop checkout, as he 
searches for his wallet and complaining,
“C’mon 
grandpa, hurry up!”?
That’s not banter. That’s something completely different. 
A new sort of passive-aggressive behaviour combined 
with name-calling, is increasingly common among 
young Brits these days, thinking that getting one 
over another person is some sort of achievement 
proving their superiority, particularly if it
belittles 
their victim as a result.
Of those surveyed, 63 per cent of over 60s said they 
had been verbally abused in public, with an ageist 
insult, while others had also noticed an increase 
in insults on television (65 per cent) social media
(33 per cent) and even from their own family 
(21 per cent).
My 11-year-old  thinks it’s funny to call me a ”boomer” 
when I can’t find the TV remote. She has a very clear 
idea of what the insult suggests, even if she’s 
actually out of range by a few years. I’m 56 -- 
so borderline Gen X’er, thank you very much.
Unfortunately for me, British families in general 
are not the sort of multi-generational dynasties, 
such as in Italy or India,  in which patriarchs 
& matriarchs, are given lifelong roles at the 
head of their family and afforded a respect 
that other members ignore at their peril.
Break the rules in one of these families, cause offence 
to an elder, and you will bring down the wrath of 
generations upon your head, face humiliation 
and even ostracisation. There is a sense of 
honour woven into the fabric of the family. 
These families are, sadly, not common 
amongst the British.
So most kids and young adults have no hesitation 
in freely hurling abuse at someone they consider 
a geriatric, past it, a fuddy duddy, over the hill, a 
fogey, a crone, an old dear, a codger, a biddy or 
a fossil, which by the way, are those insults 
most frequently employed, according to u3a.
This sort of casual cruelty, and the disregard 
it displays towards our seniors, is hugely 
disrespectful & we should be ashamed 
that it’s so widely accepted as nothing 
out of the ordinary.
We’re all guilty here. Causing offence like this should 
provoke more concern than it does, because it is an 
unwelcome sign of a breakdown in social and family 
hierarchies. Ignoring the concepts of seniority and 
wisdom --- we treat human beings like any other 
consumable, in our consumer-driven world ---
with a finite shelf-life & built-in obsolescence.
Many people feel no qualms about calling out an older 
person, in public, to remind them their time is up as a 
useful contributor to society and they need to shift 
it or risk being steamrolled by those behind them. 
While maybe not articulated quite like that as a 
traffic queue forms behind an elderly motorist 
showing excessive caution at a road junction, 
that, sadly, is often the underlying sentiment 
and we should be ashamed.
But most often, we’re not. We’re just annoyed at 
the inconvenience that someone older than us,
is causing to ourselves. Nearly 10 years ago, 
Age UK made a study of ageism & identified
it as the most widely experienced form of 
discrimination across Europe, affecting 
164 million senior citizens at that time.
Nothing much has changed in the UK in this regard 
since 2011, it seems. And if the latest study is 
anything to go by, things have become 
even worse. 
Damian Wilson is a UK journalist, ex-Fleet Street 
editor, financial industry consultant and political 
communications special advisor in the UK & EU.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in 
this column are solely those of the author and do 
not necessarily represent those of RT.


__________________________________________



 Figures Reveal 17,000 Elderly People in UK 
Forced to Sell Home to Pay for Care Costs 
in Just One Year
October 5th, 2020 (Fars news agency)


More than 17,000 pensioners were forced to sell their homes 
to pay for social care last year, research by Money Mail reveals.


The shocking figure means that 330 elderly residents each 
week are taking the desperate step despite Prime Minister 
Boris Johnson’s promise to fix the social care funding crisis.


The calculations reveal the scale of the emergency, showing 
that the numbers forced to sell their hard-won homes have 
soared 45 percent since 2000.


Last night campaigners called for urgent action and 
demanded a "national fund" to pay for social care.


Morgan Vine, of charity Independent Age, said, "The 
pandemic is not a reason not to act – it is the reason 
why action has never been more vital."


On his first day in No 10 in July 2019, Johnson vowed to 
make social care a priority and end the crisis "once and 
for all".


But he has since admitted action would be delayed and 
the coronavirus crisis has made immediate reform a 
remote possibility.


The cost of residential care has risen dramatically 
and now stands at more than £33,000 a year.


Anyone with more than £23,250 in funds, including their 
house value, is denied state help, leaving thousands 
having to sell their homes to pay soaring care bills.


The Daily Mail has campaigned to end this injustice 
for the families of those with dementia, as well as 
other patients.


MoneyMail’s calculations, verified by Independent Age, 
are based on Department of Health data indicating that 
30 percent of those who pay for their residential care 
have to sell their homes.


The total was produced by comparing the numbers of 
self-funders in care provided by analysts Laing Buisson.


The research assumes the average stay is two-and-a-half 
years, as concluded in a study by the Personal Social 
Services Research Unit and Bupa.


It means around 350,000 elderly people are estimated to 
have sold their homes to pay for residential care since 1999.


Caroline Abrahams, director at charity Age UK, said, "When 
the threat from coronavirus finally recedes, Age UK will 
certainly be holding the Government to account on its 
promise to fix social care. The obvious solution is for 
us all to pay into a national fund, like we do with 
the NHS."


She added" |Most people dread the idea of having to sell 
the family home to pay their care bills and the fact that 
this is the reality for substantial numbers is very sad."


Vine, head of policy at Independent Age, said, "These latest 
figures are a timely reminder of the need to fix the funding 
crisis that has plagued the social care system for decades, 
long before COVID-19.


"When taking office, the Prime Minister promised to solve 
the crisis, including preventing people from having to sell 
their homes to pay for care," Vine said, adding, ‘Although 
he couldn’t have predicted the challenges we now face, 
we can all predict the long-term consequences of failing 
to keep his promise."


Liz Kendall, Labour’s social care spokesman, said, "The 
Prime Minister said, on the steps to Downing Street, that 
he has a plan to fix the crisis in social care and that no 
one should have to sell their homes to pay for their care."


"Yet we have seen neither sight nor sound of 
any long-term plan for reform," Kendall said.


"This must be an absolute top priority for the Government. 
People who have worked hard and saved all their life have 
seen their savings wiped out," Kendall added.


A Department of Health and Social Care spokesman said, 
"We have committed to end the injustice that some people
have to sell their homes to finance care whilst others don’t. 
We know there is a need for a long-term solution and are 
looking at proposals."



_____________________________________________________





UK’s chief scientific adviser has
£600,000
 of shares in vaccine
maker contracted by govt
– reports
 
UK Chief Scientific Adviser Sir Patrick Vallance reportedly 
holds a bonus of tens of thousands of shares in a pharma 
giant developing a Covid-19 vaccine for the government. 
Yet, London says there is no conflict of interest.


Vallance, who also chairs the government’s expert advisory 
panel on vaccines, appears to have retained over 43,000 
shares in GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) – a UK-based 
multinational pharmaceutical company – 
worth £600,000, The Telegraph reports.


The shareholding appears to be the legacy of his previous 
job as the head of research and development at the very 
same company. Over his tenure from 2012 to 2018, 
Vallance accumulated a total of 404,201 GSK 
shares worth a whopping £6.1 million in his 
hands, according to the British media.


However, he sold more than £5 million worth of shares 
after being appointed to the government. GSK, mean-
while, has entered the global race to provide the world 
with a vaccine against coronavirus – alongside some 
20 other drug manufacturers and research centres. 
The endeavour might prove quite lucrative, should 
the company succeed.

The pharma giant working together with another drug 
manufacturer – Sanofi – has already struck deals with 
the UK and the US governments to supply them with 
a Covid-19 vaccine in case its efforts are fruitful. 
The contract would see GSK providing as many 
as 60 million doses to the UK and 100 million 
doses to the US. Washington has already 
reportedly paid the two companies 
£1.65 million to accelerate 
their efforts.

Since it received the government contracts, GSK’s 
share price rose by some two percent. Vallance 
has meanwhile been busy ensuring that the UK 
would get enough vaccine doses - if GSK is 
successful and contributing to the vaccine 
development efforts.


Earlier this week, he said that the first doses could 
be ready as early as by the end of this year, 
warning, however, that the first half of 2021
 would be a more realistic prospect.The 
revelations sparked suspicions of a 
potential conflict of interest.


However, Health Secretary Matt Hancock denied the 
possibility of this. “No, there are rules around these 
kinds of things and I'm sure that Sir Patrick has 
been fully advised by them,” he told LBC Radio. 
“If you know Sir Patrick Vallance as I do, any 
suggestion that he is doing anything other 
than his level best to try and tackle this 
virus is wrong,” he added.

A government spokesman confirmed that Vallance holds 
a deferred share bonus that would mature in April 2021 
without revealing its exact value. The spokesman also 
said that “appropriate steps were taken to manage the 
government chief scientific adviser’s (GCSA) interests 
in line with advice provided at the time.”


He added that the chief scientific adviser also has “no input”
 into the commercial decisions on vaccine procurement, 
which are taken by the government following a “robust” 
approval regime.


The developments come as the UK braces for a second wave 
of coronavirus. The number of new cases is on the rise once 
again and some places in the UK witness it increasing at a 
pace not seen since the peak of the epidemic in spring.


More than 6,100 people were confirmed to have contracted 
the disease overnight and Hancock said that up to 10,000 
people might get ill a day. The situation prompted London 
to introduce a new set of restrictions, which according to 
Prime Minister Boris Johnson might stay in place for up
to 
six months.

Some companies, including the British-Swedish AstraZeneca 
are, meanwhile, seeking emergency approval for their 
vaccines from the relevant regulators.


(originally appeared in RT.)



________________________________________________________


UN probes UK's disabled rights violations

The UN is to send a delegation to the UK
as part of an inquiry into the “grave and
systematic violations” of the rights of
disabled people --- allegedly taking
place under London’s austerity
measures.

 A visit of the UN Committee Rights of Persons
with Disabilities (UNCRPD) is taking place at
the request of the campaign group, 'Disabled
People Against Cuts' using a legal mechanism
 known as the Optional Protocol. The request
was made at the start of 2012. Britain is the
first country to face a high-level inquiry by
 the UN committee.

“This is the first time any country has been
investigated by the UN using the Optional
 Protocol so it will be, if nothing else, a very
 historic event,” Linda Burnip, co-founder of
 Disabled People Against Cuts says, adding
that the process is “long and arduous,”
with strict rules for proof of any claims.

News of the investigation was leaked
back in September. UN inquiries are
usually "confidential", but UNCRPD
confirmed it would be visiting the
UK, after the revelation.

“The inquiry follows a string of scandals
involving disabled people in the UK,
including a rise in hate crimes, which
have been overlooked by police and
 the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS),”
 former director of prosecutions, Lord
 Kenneth MacDonald, says.

Disabled people have been affected
by cuts, nine times more than most
other citizens, according to a report
by the Centre for Welfare Reform,
 in 2013.


__________________________



AND WHERE IS WALES' BLOSSOMING...?

Imagine the Rhondda using wind and sun energy
to create new rate and rent free business units,
  that encourage new enterprising companies,
which pay well and market under a "brand"
with a superb reputation for quality.

Everything to help hitting the ground running,
with hot-desking, science, and agriculture,
  to employ our youth.




Russian scientists and Scottish ones



Russian/Scottish scientists hail long-range
secure quantum communication system.

A group of scientists from ITMO University
 in Saint Petersburg, Russia, has developed
a new
approach to constructing quantum
communication
systems for secure data
exchange.


 The experimental device based on the results of the
 research is capable of transmitting single-photon
 quantum signals across distances of 250 klmtrs
 or more, which is on par with its cutting edge
analogues, the ITMO press-service says.

"Now researchers are on a mission -- to create
 a fully-fledged quantum cryptographic system,
that will generate & distribute quantum keys
 and transmit useful data simultaneously",
 ITMO says.

Information security is becoming more and more
 of a critical issue not only for large companies,
banks and defense enterprises but even for
small businesses and individual users.

But the data encryption algorithms we currently
 use for protecting our data are imperfect - in the
 long-term, their logic can be cracked. Regardless
 of how complex and intricate the algorithm is,
 getting around it, is just a matter of time.

Unlike algorithm-based encryption, systems
 that protect information by making use of
 fundamental laws of quantum physics, can
make data transmission totally immune to
 hacker attacks, in the future.

Information in a quantum channel is carried
by single photons that change irreversibly
 if an eavesdropper tries to intercept them.
The legitimate users will instantly know
 about any kind of intervention.


Researchers at the Quantum Information Centre
 of the International Institute of Photonics and
 Optical Information Technology at ITMO Uni.,
Russia, along with their colleagues from the
Heriot-Watt University, in Edinburgh, have
 devised a new way to generate and
 distribute, quantum bits.

This makes it possible to share quantum signals
--- via optical fibres --- 250 kilometres in distance.

"To transmit quantum signals, we use the so-
called side frequencies," says Artur Gleim,
head of the Quantum Information Centre, 
at
 ITMO University,

 "This unique approach gives us a number
 of advantages -- such as a considerable
simplification of the device architecture
 and the large pass-through capacity of
the quantum channel. In terms of bit rate
 and operating distances, our system is
comparable to absolute champions in
the field of quantum communications."

According to Robert Collins, research associate
 at the Institute of Photonics & Quantum Sciences
 at Heriot-Watt University and one of the authors
of the study, this may become a pivotal point for
 the whole field of quantum communication and
 cryptography:

 "Down the track, this new approach can enable
 smooth coexistence of numerous data streams
 with different wavelengths in one single optical
 cable. On top of it, these quantum streams can
 be fed into the already existing fibre optic lines
 --- along with conventional communications."

The research paper is published
in the Optics Express journal.


Scottish universities are to be
congratulated for their strong
& growing links with Chinese
and Russian universities....

What a shame, that Wales is
lying low --- with academics
too scared to break from
US 
military research.


China sent 30 missions
 into space in 2017
- a record!

January 04, 2017

China conducted 30 space launch missions in 2017 
--- a record-breaking number in
 the country's
space history, said China Aero-
space
Science &Technology Corporation.


Long March-5 and Long March-7 rockets are
used
to carry out most space missions,
the China News Service reported.


Long March-5 is China's largest carrier rocket. The
successful test launch of the vehicle in November,
 in S. China's Hainan Province, has paved the way
for space station construction, analysts said.

Wang Yu, the general director of the Long March-5
 program, said 2017 was a critical year for China's
 new generation of carrier rockets - and Long
March-5 rockets carried Chang'e-5 probe to
space. The probe has landed on the moon,

 collected samples and returned to Earth.

On the other hand, Long March-7, the more powerful
 version of Long March-2, sent China's 1st cargo
 spacecraft Tianzhou-1 into space, in the first
half
of 2017, according to Wang Zhaoyao,
director of
China Manned Space
Engineering Office.

Tianzhou-1
docked with Tiangong-2 space lab
conducting experiments on propellant
supplements.


China conducted 22 launch missions in 2016 and 19
 in 2015. The country successfully tested its Long
 March-7 rocket in June 2016, and has gradually
 shifted to new generation rockets that reduce
the
use of toxic rocket fuels.


China released several white papers on its space
 activities, announcing plans to soft land Chang'
e-5
on the moon, by the end of 2017, and launch
its
first Mars probe, by 2020.


After Chang'e-5, China would launch Chang'e-4
 lunar probe in about 2018 to achieve mankind's
 first soft landing on the far side of the moon - 
and conduct in situ and roving detection and
 relay communications at Earth-moon L2 point.

The white paper also said that iover the next 5
years, China would provide space & aviation
-
related services to countries involved in the

One Belt and One Road initiative, such as
satellite communications, navigation and
weather forecasting analysis.

It has now, in 2021, done so.

conserving life on earth


MAN
by Steve Cutts

 
European leaders ask US to
 reduce polluting emissions
 April 13th (Prensa Latina) 
 
European parliamentarians, managers and 
union leaders urged the United States to 
cut greenhouse gas emissions by half 
compared to 2005.
 
Continental authorities and industrial representatives 
sent an open letter to President Joe Biden asking him 
for a transatlantic alliance to combat climate change 
and achieve a 'just and sustainable transition' 
towards an economy with low carbon 
dioxide emissions.
 
This request, comes a week before a summit between 
environmental leaders and the president of the United
States, & is headed by the head of the environmental 
committee of the European Parliament, Pascal Canfin.
 
According to the letter, the countries of the bloc and 
the United States together account for a quarter of 
the world's carbon dioxide emissions.
 
The European Union agreed, last year, to cut pollutant 
flows by at least 55% by 2030 compared to 1990 levels.
 
Executives from companies, such as the French auto-
maker Renault and the German energy company E.ON
backed the letter, that expresses European concerns 
about the cost of jobs, if the reduction of emissions 
is achieved.
 
Statistics from global organizations rank the US in 
second place, by country, in terms of polluting 
emissions into the atmosphere.
 
Germany tops the list in Europe, due to its great 
dependence on coal, and generates emissions
equivalent to a quarter of the continental total.
 
 
__________________________________



Amazon Lost 17 Percent to 
Deforestation in 2020
- Report
April 7th, (teleSUR)
 
Brazil accounts for 65 percent of the loss, 
followed by Bolivia, Peru, and Colombia. 
The primary forest loss in Bolivia, 
Ecuador, and Peru reached 
unprecedented levels
 last year.
 
The environmental organization Amazon 
Conservation reported on Wednesday -- 
that the South American rainforest lost
 17 percent of its area to deforestation 
in 2020, representing 2.3 million 
hectares devastated across
 nine countries.
 
The study found that "a common phenomenon 
observed in the satellite imagery through
 August -- was that rainforest areas were 
first deforested and then later burned 
-- causing major fires due to the 
abundant recently-cut 
biomass." 
 
This data explains why agricultural practices are
 a significant cause of deforestation in the region.
 
According to Amazon satellite monitoring project 
(MAAP) Matt Finer, "the primary cause of 
deforestation across the Amazon 
appears to be agriculture and 
cattle-related, ranging from:
 ''larger-scale'' operations in 
Brazil to the accumulation 
of smaller-scale clearings
 throughout the western 
Amazon."
 
 
__________________________



'Guilt is Strangling': Young 'PlogMan' in 
India Has Been Waking Up Pre-Dawn
for 
7 Years, Here's Why
by Radhika Parashar
15.03.2021 (Sputnik)


Last week, in the city of Faridabad in India’s Haryana state, a 
pregnant cow died on a busy road. Upon evaluation, it was 
revealed that the cow had grazed on 71 kilograms of 
garbage – with the plastic, iron nails, and glass 
pieces it had consumed injuring it internally. 
The sad case highlighted how unsorted 
waste is choking India.


Meet Vivek Gurav who lives in Pune city in Maharashtra and is 
famous by the name of “PlogMan” on social media. At 25 years 
of age, Gurav is a software engineer by profession, but before 
and after his nine-to-five job, the young techie jogs or walks 
around Pune, cleaning its streets and disposing off garbage 
littering the roads.


Talking to Sputnik, the public speaker revealed that he, along 
with a bunch of his friends, has “adopted” a small river named 
Indrayani to keep its water and banks from getting strangled 
with garbage. The Indrayani River flows just 4.2 kilometres 
before joining into a larger water body, and not too long ago,
like Delhi’s Yamuna River, Indrayani also began to froth with 
toxins on its banks.


“The river Indrayani near my college was a place where I went for 
a daily walk with my friends in the evening. We observed people 
who carelessly dumped a lot of trash and plastic in the river 
body as well as surrounding areas. Me and my friends 
initially blamed the local body and government for all 
these actions. But I personally felt it was the moral 
duty of citizens including me to follow cleanliness 
norms and keep the city clean. That was the 
moment I felt a very close belonging to 
nature”, Gurav said while recollecting 
how dead fish were seen floating
in 
the water as stray animals 
consumed them, as well 
as the polluted water.


Gurav believes that it takes a sudden epiphany for youngsters 
to decide for a lifetime of giving back to nature and 
the environment.


“I appealed to my friends to join me in cleaning Indrayani. Initially 
some were quite resistant, some people even ridiculed the idea, 
completely dismissing it, but I took up this challenge and started
 the cleanup journey solo four years ago. In some time, a few of 
my friends started supporting me and we adopted the River 
Indrayani for a mega cleanup mission”, the engineer and 
environmental enthusiast added.


The efforts of Gurav and his friends have been going on for seven 
years now and on a routine basis they clean the river region and
 areas around it in Pune. The river is healthier and safer for 
animals now, the techie adds.


“After my college days we took up the charge to not only clean 
rivers but all the public spaces in the city. For the last seven 
years, I have been waking up at five in the morning, and 
randomly taking on a jogging route, on which I pick-up 
trash as well for around 45 minutes. The realisation of 
knowing that you’ve done your little bit to benefit the 
air around you and survival resources for the stray 
animals – sleep comes sooner and deeper”, Gurav 
said, with a shy smile.


Recently, a rather touching video from the Himalayan valley 
of Jammu and Kashmir in India created a buzz around 
environmental conservation on social media. The 
video showed some foreigners collecting roadside
 trash in the market area of Lalchowk in Srinagar city.


Locals who shared the footage on their social media handles
 acknowledged that the video testified to how their own 
negligence towards maintaining cleanliness in public 
spaces has ruined the beauty of their city.


In recent years, the roadside garbage situation in cities in India 
has been overshadowed by ignorance despite numerous 
incidents like the death of stray animals crying for
 immediate attention.


In 2017, a survey, co-researched by Chintan, the Delhi Environment 
Department and German NGO GIZ, claimed that India's capital Delhi, 
inhabited by over 30 million residents, generates over 9,100 metric
 tonnes of garbage on average each year. The report also said that
 nearly 76 percent Delhiites wrongly believe that glass and metal 
are biodegradable, dump it on the roadside, and need more 
education on the subject.


While several individuals like Gurav, NGOs, and government 
programmes like the Swachh Bharat (clean India) mission 
are working on cleaning India, the new trend of “plogging”
 is seemingly picking up pace in the country. The term 
“plogging” was coined in Sweden in 2016 and defines
 the activity of “picking trash while jogging”.


“Youngsters are getting more sensitive about environment 
conservation in India, for sure. I am the founder of a 
community called Pune Ploggers, which is a group 
of individuals like me who all pick-up trash while
 jogging or walking. 


“We have more than 4,000 ploggers across India and we are now
 setting up city-wise communities. Collection of more than 250 
tonnes of waste in the last one year is a remarkable 
achievement due to the efforts of this community. 
With over 280 plogging drives across 22 cities in 
India, our community of environment enthusiasts 
has grown exponentially”, Gurav said.


The PlogMan from Pune has appealed to all potential climate 
activists in India to work every day towards passing on a 
greener and cleaner planet to the generations to come.


“Go zero-waste, avoid littering, manage household waste, use 
green alternatives for all the daily essentials, and buy only 
what we really need could be some simple changes we 
can add to all our lifestyles”, Gurav added.


The climate enthusiast noted that while India is emerging as a 
leader in sustainable practices like solar and electric ways of 
producing energy, Indians are far from fixing the real problem
 - accepting the crisis.


According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), ambient air 
pollution causes 4.2 million deaths every year. 91% of the 
world's population lives in places where air quality 
exceeds the WHO guidelines' limits.


Bangladesh, Pakistan, Mongolia, Afghanistan, and India 
make for the world’s five most polluted countries, 
according to a report by the World 
Population Review.
______________________________


 
Post-Brexit 'Loophole' 
Lets UK Keep Sending
 Plastic Waste to Poorer 
Countries, Report Says
12.01.2021 (Sputnik) 
 
 
 The United Kingdom is facing a backlash 
from 
environmentalists over a post-Brexit
"loophole" 
that allows it to ship plastic 
waste to 
developing countries --- in 
disregard of 
its previous pledges, 
The Guardian reported Tuesday.
 
From January 1, the European Union banned exports 
of non-recyclable plastic waste to countries outside 
the Organisation for Economic Co-operation 
and Development.
 
The UK, which left the EU’s single market and customs 
union on December 31, will continue the practice, 
despite Tory commitments that post-Brexit 
regulations would not undermine 
environmental standards, the 
British newspaper said.
 
The country, which is the 2nd-biggest producer of plastic 
waste after the United States, will now reportedly export 
plastic waste, under a procedure of prior informed 
consent, in accordance with which the importer 
can agree or disagree to take in 
such shipments.
 
Greenpeace political campaigner Sam Chetan-Welsh, 
quoted by the newspaper, slammed the UK 
government for creating a "loophole to
 
allow the dumping of our plastic trash 
on environments and communities" 
 in poorer countries, arguing that 
"this is not leadership, it’s failing 
to do the bare minimum."
 
_____________________________

 
 
Biden’s climate advisor has ties 
to oil and gas industry: Report
November 21st, 2020 (Press TV)


US President-elect Joe Biden’s senior advisor on climate change 
has faced strong criticism from environmental advocates over
 his ties with the oil and gas industry, according to a report.
 

Cedric Richmond, a Louisiana congressman who has played a 
key role in Biden’s presidential campaign, was named as a 
senior adviser to the president-elect and will become 
director of the White House Office of Public 
Engagement, The Guardian reported.


Richmond will advise Biden on climate change --- and help 
advance the federal response to the coronavirus pandemic.


At a press conference this week, Richmond – who has 
represented a south Louisiana district for 10 years – 
announced that he would resign from Congress 
to assume his new position.


“I look forward to changing not only Louisiana but the 
entire south and empowering its citizens,” he said.


The Democrat has been under criticism from both local 
constituents and climate activists for receiving 
generous donations from the oil, gas and 
chemical industries.


He has also exhibited a degree of indifference to local air 
pollution, with his congressional district being home 
to seven of the 10 most air-polluted census tracts
in the US.


Richmond pledged greater public engagement 
to address the issue.


Some advocates said while they were worried about 
Richmond’s track record on the climate, they were 
cautiously optimistic about his new appointment.


“I think he’s in a position now to be able to better serve the 
constituents of his district,” said Robert Taylor, president 
of the Concerned Citizens of St John Parish, a community 
group in one of the most polluted parts of the region.


“I’m happy to see him get the appointment, I just hope he 
uses it to help us,” he told the paper. Taylor added: “I 
would like to see him hold these chemical plants 
accountable because they are getting away
with murder.”


Biden has signaled his intent to put climate change on top 
of his administration's policy agenda. However, concerns 
persist about the degree to which the Democrat is willing 
to challenge the power of the fossil fuel industry.


Apart from Richmond, environmental activists are worried 
about Ernest Moniz, another individual with ties to the oil 
and gas industry who is widely speculated to have been 
picked to lead the Department of Energy.


Moniz was Secretary of Energy in the administration of 
former President Barack Obama from 2013 through to
2017 and played a critical role in mustering support 
for the controversial use of fracking to produce 
natural gas.


Moniz is currently a director of Southern Company, the 
second-highest carbon-polluting energy company 
in America.


During the 2020 campaign, Biden unequivocally rejected 
calls to ban fracking, which experts say is harmful to the 
environment and people’s health.



___________________________________________



Obsession with consumerism will
destroy the world of our children
by Ken Livingstone
December 24th, 2018.

Ken Livingstone is an English politician, he served as
 the Mayor of London between 2000 and 2008. He is
also a former MP and a former member of the
Labour Party.

Amid growing climate change concerns, what politicians
 fear most, is not standing up to the coal and oil
industries, but having to tell the people that
they need to buy and consume less.

As two hundred nations gathered in Poland to discuss
 climate change, the opening comments of David
Attenborough, went global across the
world’s media.

“Right now, we are facing a man-made disaster of global
scale, our greatest threat, in thousands of years…
climate change… If we don’t take action,
the
collapse of our civilisations, and
the
extinction of much of the natural

world, is on the horizon… Leaders
 of the world, you must lead. The
 continuation of civilisations and
 the natural world, upon which,
we
depend, is in your hands,”
said
Attenborough.

He went on to recommend that ordinary people make a
 change every day by using public transport and other
measures to reduce carbon emissions.

Yet, for all Attenborough’s warnings, we have seen the
election of a climate change denier to the White
House, in the form of Donald Trump, and the
recent election of a Brazilian president
who also denies climate change.

So,
what is the truth?

The simple fact is that the twenty warmest years in
our history have been in the last twenty-two years
and the four warmest years have been the last
four years on our planet.

Scientists are now warning that we need to increase
 our actions to tackle climate change by at least five
 times, merely to stop the increase in temperature
going above 1.5 centigrade.

It’s not just temperatures that threaten our existence.

Since 1970, we have wiped out 60 percent of birds,
mammals, reptiles and fish across our planet. This
 information comes from a World Wildlife Fund
 report, which drew on the evidence of 59
scientists around the world.

The report warns that the rapid increase in the waste
 of food and other resources is wiping out the web of
 life ,on which our society depends, for clean air and
water. The director of science and conservation at
 the WWF, Mike Barrett, warned that we “are
sleepwalking towards the edge of a cliff.”

He pointed out that a similar 60 percent wiping out of
 the human population, would be the equivalent of
 killing every human in Europe, China, Africa and
the Americas. He went on to warn, that nature
is not just nice to have, but it is our life
support system.

The simple fact is, we are running out of time and,
unless
we find ways to restore our eco systems
and tackle
climate change, we face the prospect
of humanity’s
extinction, by the end of
the century.

. Since the
dawn of civilisation, we have destroyed
eighty-
three percent of all mammals and half of
all
plants, and it could take millions of years

for the world to recover.

The WWF report pointed out that the main cause of wildlife
 loss is the destruction of natural habitats, mainly to create
 new farmland. Three quarters of all the land on our planet
has now been affected by our activities. Here in Britain,
 we have seen the loss of most of our wildlife, and we
have less biodiversity, than 189 other nations.

Although politicians at their conferences keep agreeing
to
limit the rise in the earth’s temperature to 2 degrees

centigrade and, if possible, just 1.5 degrees by the end
of this century. This would still mean the destruction
of all our coral reefs, which play a vital part in
sustaining the population of fish. There will
also be rising sea levels and increasing, 
violent weather events.

This year’s storms have devastated South Korea, Vietnam,
the Philippines and Tonga. Hurricanes also caused wide-
spread damage in the USA and wildfires erupted in
California, Canada and Greece, claiming many
lives. In Kerala, India nearly one and a half
million people were forced out of their
homes by violent floods, which also
occurred in East Africa and Japan.

In the last one hundred years the amount of carbon dioxide
 in our atmosphere has gone up by a third. The increase in
 greenhouse gas emissions has doubled since 1971,
mainly caused by industrial activity.

The UK’s Met Office [national weather service] has warned
 that rising sea levels and climate change threaten over
 one and a half million homes --- with the prospect of
farmland being turned into marshes and beaches
 washed away, by the end of the century.

The UK Climate Projections recent report predicted the sea
 around our shores will have risen by between three and
 four feet by the end of the century, putting 1.7 million
 homes at risk.

Many coastal towns will have to be abandoned, with large
parts of the counties of Kent, Somerset and Essex, being
submerged under the sea. The worst example is that the
 sea could now extend so far into Britain, that it could
 overwhelm the city of Cambridge.

The rise in sea level would leave 100,000 coastal homes
and other buildings at risk, with another 100,000
 vulnerable to collapse from landslides.

The report warns that, unless we reduce our emissions,
the temperature will have risen by 4 degrees centigrade
 by the end of the century, with melting glaciers and
ice caps overwhelming the Thames Barrier and
flooding London.

But it’s not just here in London that we are at risk. Houston,
 Shanghai and Jakarta, are increasingly vulnerable to
storms and flooding. The charity Christian Aid
warned in its recent report that city planners
 are failing to prepare for what is coming.

Most of our biggest cities are built close
to the coast or by large rivers and all
are now at risk.

In 2015, 195 countries meeting in France agreed to
 keep global warming below two degrees. But the
US has now announced it intends to withdraw
from this agreement, and here in Britain, one
of the first actions of the newly elected Tory
government, back in 2010, was to reduce
funding for green energy and it has now
unleashed a new strategy: for a vast
 increase in fracking across
the country.

Even the Tory MP Zac Goldsmith has warned his
government, of the risk of a political backlash.
The fracking - near Blackpool - caused several
minor earthquakes which forced the company,
Cuadrilla, to halt operations, after a 0.8
magnitude tremor.

In 2017, we saw fifteen deadly weather disasters:
heatwaves, floods and droughts. If I think back
to
the 1960s, there would be one or two violent

weather events in the year: now, it’s become
 a regular part of our news coverage.

In September, Indonesia was struck by a tsunami
and an earthquake that killed thousands and left
many missing. Given the thousands of lives lost
this year, with just a one degree increase, I
 dread to think how many more are going
to die, even if we cap the increase at
1.5 centigrade.

 Even to meet that target, carbon emissions have to
 be cut by forty-five percent, by 2030, but they’re
still going up and most of the difficult decisions
- that should have been taken at the Poland
conference - have been deferred to the
 next meeting.

Although the US has a climate change denying president,
latest opinion polls show that 80% of Americans believe
 climate change is happening, including a majority
of Republicans.

Nicholas Stern, who cooperated with me when I was mayor
 of London and is author of a landmark report on climate
 change economics, said: “It is clear that the progress
 we are making is inadequate, given the scale and
urgency of the risks we face… a much more
attractive clean and efficient path for
economic development and poverty
 reduction, is in our hands.”

It was 26 years ago - in 1992 -  that the UN Framework
 Convention on Climate Change was signed, binding
governments to a commitment to reduce the level
 of carbon emissions. Yet now, a quarter of a
century on, even if we achieve the target
set by those governments, the world’s
temperature will increase by more
 than three degrees centigrade.

It’s not just that politicians lack the courage to stand up to
 the coal and oil industries, but what they fear most, is
having to tell all of us, that we need to buy and
consume less. A third of all the food used in
Europe and North America ends up wasted
and thrown away. More and more of the
 things we buy, are just left in our cup-
boards and drawers, until they are,
 eventually, thrown out.

I grew up in that post-war world where nothing was wasted
 and our pleasure came from the time we spent with our
friends and family, but, over these last fifty years, the
Western world has switched to an obsession with
shopping and consumption and we spend less
 time with our friends and our family. We can
 either go back to that world without waste,
 or we are going to destroy the world of
our children.

(Source - RT)


_____________________________________________




Japan finds itself
buried in plastic waste

 after China stops
importing world’s trash

21st of October, 2018, at 4:11am

Nations across the globe are beginning to suffer from
waste build-up, after China stopped importing
recyclable garbage this year. Japan has
become the latest country reporting
severe recycling industry overload.

China’s ban on imports of 24 types of solid waste materials,
such as soda bottles, mixed paper, recycled steel and
newsprint, has impacted the recycling chain across
the globe. Japan, which, last year, exported about
half its 1.5 million tons of annual plastic waste,
is now piled, higher and deeper, in its own
garbage,
with many local governments
struggling to cope
with the problem.

About a quarter of 102 local governments surveyed
 reported seeing accumulated plastic waste, which
in some cases overreached sanitary norms, the
Environment Ministry data showed, this week.

 At least 34 municipalities noted that they are failing to
 find new destinations to outsource their plastic, after
 the domestic costs of processing waste, shot up.

China’s refusal to accept more garbage is overstretching
the Japanese recycling industry, with 34.9 percent of
companies limiting or considering restricting the
quantities of plastics they can accept. To deal
with the problem, the Japanese ministry said
it will expand domestic capacity to process
plastic waste. The government also wants
 to introduce measures to prevent illegal
dumping and to expand the use of
bioplastics,
which are
biodegradable.

A similar problem was reported this weekend in the UK,
which last year exported roughly two-thirds of its
recyclables. The Local Government Association
 (LGA) blamed the Chinese ban for the change
in councils’ recycling methods, which are
forcing the local authorities to add an
 extra £500,000 a year, in costs.

“It’s clear that the ban by China on imported waste, which
could, soon, be implemented by other countries, could
have a marked impact on councils’ ability to recycle,”
said Martin Tett, the LGA's environment spokesman.

China, which over the last 25 years was taking in 45 percent
 of cumulative plastic imports, without a doubt made a huge
 impact on the global recycling system. While many Chinese
companies relocated their operations to Malaysia, the Asian
 country does not have the capacity to replace China, and, 
this week, imposed a three-month ban on imports. We
 "will do our very best to ensure that Malaysia not be
 the plastic rubbish bin of developed countries,"
Science, Technology and Environment and
Climate Change minister Yeo Bee Yin said.

Vietnam, which once welcomed foreign shipments, is also
finding it hard to cope with recyclables, imposing a new
temporary ban on imports, between June & October.

Thailand, the other world destination of plastic
goods,
reportedly, will ban imports, by 2021.

The closure of
Asian countries to plastic, will also
affect the US,
which, in the first six months of
this year,
exported its recycling to Thailand,

Malaysia and Vietnam.


__________________________________________________




Clock is ticking: Planet
has
only TWELVE years to
avert
global climate chaos,

 UN warns
October 8th, at 11:59am

The world’s nations should unite in an “unprecedented”
 effort --- to curb the global rise of temperatures by a
larger-than-agreed margin, a UN climate-change
panel said. This would limit the damage
caused by industrialization.

The consequences of global climate change will be less
severe for our planet, if countries across the world
managed to curb the rising of temperatures to
1.5 º C above pre-industrial levels, instead of
the 2º C benchmark targeted today, the
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate
Change (IPCC) said on Monday.

Reaching this objective is possible, the study noted, but
will require revolutionary changes to power generation
 methods and the phasing out of fossil fuels, coal in
particular. A major transformation will also be
required to the transportation network, as
well as to human lifestyles, especially
when it comes to growing food.

The half-degree difference could stop the almost complete
 eradication of corals and would ease pressure on the
Arctic, which is seeing a steady meltdown. Sea level
rises would be 10 cm lower, with a 1.5º C rise
compared to 2º C by 2100. “Every extra bit
of warming matters, especially since a
warming of 1.5ºC or higher, increases
 the risk associated with long-lasting
or irreversible changes, such as the
loss of some ecosystems,” said
Hans-Otto Pörtner, Co-Chair of
IPCC Working Group II.

 “Limiting global warming to 1.5°C compared with 2°C
would reduce challenging impacts on ecosystems,
human health and well-being, making it easier to
achieve the United Nations Sustainable
Development Goals,” Priyardarshi
Shukla, Co-Chair of IPCC WG III
 #ipcc #sr15

 ''Our top-level politicians should
make tackling climate
change
their utmost priority,
before it's too late'' 

(Op-Ed by Ken Livingstone)
https://on.rt.com/9fll

The report, based on more than 6,000 scientific works,
 noted that consequences such as water scarcity,
extreme weather, the spread of diseases and
food shortages will be less severe at 1.5 º C
 rather than 2 ºC. If humanity passes the
1.5º C threshold, humans will need to
rely on technologies to remove
carbon from the atmosphere.

However, “the effectiveness of such techniques
is unproven at large scale and some may carry
significant risks for sustainable development,”
 the report notes.

Monday’s report is a follow-up to the 2015 Paris Climate
Change Agreement, under which 195 nations pledged
to hold global temperatures “well below” 2º C above
pre-industrial levels. Whether or not the goal is still
attainable, remains questionable, after President
Donald Trump pulled out of the agreement,
claiming it was unfair to his country. 

So far, the planet has witnessed a 1º C rise in temperature
compared to pre-industrial levels. National commitments
to cut emissions will not limit global warming to 1.5 º C,
the report warns, stressing that 1.5 º C warming will be
witnessed, sometime between 2030 and 2052, if the
current trends continue.

(Source - RT)


________________________________________________________





Fantastic news from Wales –

 the Planning Inspectorate has rejected plans
for an opencast coal mine at Nant Llesg
near Merthyr Tydfil.
 
This historic victory comes after years of tireless
 campaigning by the local community campaign
United Valleys Action Group, alongside our
local group in Merthyr and the team at
Friends of the Earth Cymru.
 
If given the go-ahead, the mine would have seen
 6 million tonnes of coal extracted over the next
 14 years – causing huge harm to local residents,
wrecking our beautiful countryside, and
 contributing to runaway climate change.
 
But yesterday’s decision is a true testament to
 what we can achieve together when we put
 our minds to it. Alyson Austin, from the
local
group, summed it up perfectly:

"Words can't express how pleased and relieved we
are, that communities in Rhymney, Pontlottyn

and Fochriw, have been spared this
horrendous
experience – they
deserve this outcome."


__________________________________________________


Ukrainian chemical factory
triggers ecological disaster
 in Crimea
September 6th, at 11:41am

The work of the Crimean Titanium factory was suspended
for two weeks, because of emissions of sulfur dioxide. A
state of ecological disaster was declared, in the town
of Armyansk.

More than 4,000 children are being evacuated, schools in
 the town of Armyansk, were closed for two weeks, as a
result of the accident. Emissions of harmful substances
into the atmosphere occurred, due to the negligence of
both the owner of the factory and the local authorities.

 Crimean Titanium belongs to Ukrainian oligarch, Dmitry
 Firtash. Accidents have occurred at the factory before
 too, although they were on a smaller scale.

"The emission of chemicals into the atmosphere, led to
an increase in atmospheric air temperatures. They also
resulted in the sustainable absence of precipitation,
and a lower water level in the acid storage facility,"
Deputy Prime Minister of Crimea, Igor
Mikhailichenko, said.

This term 'acid storage facility' designates a diked part
of Sivash Lake, also known as the "Rotten Lake." The
owner of the factory continued with the dangerous
production, knowing that there was not enough
water to neutralize acid, and did not report
the emergency to the authorities.

As for the local authorities, supervisory bodies seem to
have ignored the fact that there was no water running
on the blocked North-Crimean channel to the factory.
The authorities were supposed to close the factory,
but they turned a blind eye on the problem and
preferred to let the chips fall, where they may.

Residents of Armyansk started complaining on August 23,
but the authorities set up a commission only on Aug. 28.
At first, most of the patients were diagnosed with ARVI
(acute respiratory viral infection), but they later
developed allergic conjunctivitis, allergic
pharyngitis and Quincke's edema.

Meanwhile, the head of the Crimea, Sergei Aksenov, continues
to say that people's lives are out of danger and there is no
threat to their health, although it was Aksenov, who
ordered children to be evacuated from the
affected region of the peninsula.

Crimean Titanium is the largest producer of titanium dioxide
 in Eastern Europe. The company also produces red iron
oxide pigment, mineral fertilizers, sulfuric acid,
aluminum sulfate, liquid sodium glass, and
iron vitriol.

(Source - Pravda.Ru)


____________________________________________________________



China builds an
‘Ecological Civilization’
while the world burns
August 31st, 2018
by Denis Etler

Like the Soviet Union in the 1930s with its accelerated push
to industrialize, China in the 1990s and 2000s threw caution
 to the winds, and industrialized at break neck speed. The
 Soviets realized, that if they didn’t rapidly industrialize,
 the Western capitalists, both of the liberal and fascist
 variety, would direct all their fire at the first worker’s
 state and try to destroy it. That Soviet drive to
industrialize had many negative consequences,
but if they hadn’t done so, the Nazi onslaught
in
1941, may well have succeeded.

Such a result would have been an unprecedented disaster for
 the entire world. Instead, the Soviet Union was able to repel
and defeat German imperialism, a victory of unparalleled
 importance. The industrial foundation laid down by the
Soviet Union prior to and during, WW2, allowed for a
swift recovery from the devastation visited upon
her. After the war, the Soviet Union become a
bastion of peace and socialism, serving as
 a bulwark --- against the spread of US
imperialism and a steadfast ally of
 newly emerging nations fighting
for liberation from European
colonialism.

With the demise of the USSR and the collapse of the Soviet
 bloc - in the late 1980s and 90s - China found itself in the
cross-hairs of US imperialism. While disputes with the
USSR had protected the PRC from attempts by the US
 to destabilize and sabotage her, once the Soviet
Union
was no more, China became the next
target. The
Chinese leadership realized it
had to quickly
industrialize, under the
new conditions of
US global
hegemony.

Like the Soviets before them, China threw caution to the
winds --- and put all her efforts into a vast program of
industrialization, come hell or high water. As a result,
 China experienced severe environmental damage.

The Chinese people saw their country surge ahead
 to become an industrial power, the factory to the
world, and they put up with environmental
degradation and pollution.

But, many soon realized that the path taken, while
 expedient, was unsustainable. With the advent of
XJP, corrective measures were taken, which are
 turning things around, and setting China on a
course of sustainable development, towards
an ecological civilization. John Bachtell,
 national chair of the Communist Party
USA, has written an incisive essay,
 that recounts the history of China’s
 industrialization, its trials and
travails, and its new march
- towards sustainability.

In remarks to the CPC leadership in 2013, President Xi Jinping
said, “We will never again seek economic growth, at the cost
of the environment.”

 More recently, Xi stressed “To protect the ecological environment
 is to protect [the] productive forces. To improve the ecological
environment is to develop the productive forces. A good
ecological
environment is the most just public product,
one that most
fully promotes the well-being of all
the people.”

China has committed to a sustainable path and building an
“ecological civilization” as a national strategy, since the
17th CPC Congress, in 2007. The goal is, to form “an
energy and resource efficient, environmentally
friendly structure of industries, pattern of
growth, and mode of consumption.”

The concept of “ecological civilization construction” was
added to the CPC constitution, during the 18th CPC
 Congress, in 2012. It was placed on a par with
“economic, political, cultural and
social progress.”

The adoption of several reforms, in 2015, to accelerate
the
process, addresses many of the country’s major
 environmental issues. “The proposals cover
the
protection of natural resource rights; the
establishment of a national parks system;
better, stricter systems for the protection
of arable land, and water resources
management; the establishment of
 a green financing system; and the
improvement of environmental
 compensation mechanisms.”

Only an eco-socialist oriented society can move with such
 unity, purpose and speed, toward sustainability. It helps,
 that government and CPC leaders are deeply committed
 to building the ecological civilization and driving the
process, including President Xi and Premier
Li Keqiang.

Consequently, the CPC initiated a “war on pollution” just like
 its “war on poverty”, which will be eliminated entirely, in the
next 3-5 years. With an overall economic slowdown, the
priority has moved from quantity to quality: in
production,
environmental protection, and
becoming a global leader
in the fight
against the climate crisis.

A law passed in 2014 to reduce CO2 emissions from coal
 power plants, has resulted in a 14 percent reduction, as
of June 2018.

 New measures adopted in May 2018 will result in the
“comprehensive recycling” of hard waste materials. 

China is one of a few countries to pass laws and
 develop a strategy to create a circular economy
 (reuse, recycling and remanufacturing).

The ministry of Ecology & the Environment has identified
9 million sources of pollution, 7.4 million of them, being
 from industrial sources.

China is doubling the previous target for solar power
production, by 2020, and is the largest producer of
 solar panels, in the world.


________________________________________________________



Share to Facebook Share to Twitter Share to Email

Campaigners accuse government
of silencing opposition to fracking
Friday, August 16th, 2018.
by Will Stone

Environmental campaigners accused the government today
 of silencing public opposition to fracking by removing
questions about the unpopular practice from its
quarterly opinion poll.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
 has announced that it will be reducing the frequency with
 which it surveys public opinion on fracking,
to
once a year.

Its decision to omit fracking questions from the quarterly poll
was revealed in the department's latest public attitude
tracker on energy.

However, Green Party MEP Keith Taylor accused
 the department of trying to silence criticism.

He said: “Ministers have been asking the public whether
they support fracking on a quarterly basis, for over
 four years.

“But, despite a huge PR push, opposition has always
outstripped support, which has never exceeded 30%
and long languished below 20%.

“How have the Conservatives responded to such a
consistent rejection of the climate-destructive
 industry?

“By stopping asking what we think so often, and
giving fracking the green light, in the meantime.”

The government said that, following analysis of data,
it found “there is little change over the years” in
public opinion on certain questions, including
fracking, from one season to another.

Other topics removed from its quarterly poll include
trust in energy suppliers, knowledge of radioactive
waste and support or opposition to nuclear energy.

Friends of the Earth campaigner Tony Bosworth said:

 “The government’s very own survey, consistently
showed climbing support for renewable energy,
while support for fracking was really low.

“Perhaps, having recently tried to change planning rules
 so that fracking companies could drill more easily,
they were just scared of a record bad survey
result for them this time, so have stopped
even asking, any more.”

Greenpeace UK energy campaigner Nina Schrank added:

 “The government needs to catch up with the electorate,
 who can already see that our future is renewable.”

Fracking company Ineos, was granted permission by
the
government's planning inspectorate, yesterday,
to launch
the first shale gas exploration scheme
in Derbyshire.

(Source - Morning Star)



_______________________________________________________




Global Tree Cover Has Increased
7 Percent Since 1982,Says Study
August 10th, 2018

Prensa Latina - A team of US researchers has found that
new global tree growth over the past 35 years, has more
 than offset global tree cover losses.

In their paper published in the journal Nature, the group
describes using satellite data to track forest growth
and losses over the past 35 years and what they
found by doing so.

There has been a growing consensus in recent years
that because humans cut down so many trees (most
 particularly in the rainforests) that global tree cover
is shrinking. In this new effort, the researchers have
found that not to be the case. They contend that
global tree cover, is actually increasing.

The researchers report that most of the new tree cover
occurred in places that had previously been barren,
 such as in deserts, tundra areas, on mountains,
in
cities and in other non-vegetated land.

They further report that much of the new growth came
about due to efforts by humans (such as reforestation
efforts in China, and parts of Africa) and because of
global warming, warmer temperatures have raised
timberlines in some mountainous regions, and
allowed forests to creep into tundra areas.

Other areas of new tree growth resulted from large farm
 abandonments in places like Russia and the U.S. The
researchers report that their calculations showed
that human activities have directly caused
approximately 60 percent of new global
 tree growth.

They suggest their technique for monitoring tree cover
could be used to predict tree cover changes in the
future, due to global warming.


___________________________________________________



The bloody slaughter
goes on and on

by Peter Frost
Friday, August 3rd, 2018

A sad PETER FROST discovers that despite
a little good news, the slaughter of whales
 still continues.

It seems incredible, and very sad, that every year
 we have to return to the subject of the bloody
 slaughter of whales and other sea mammals.

Japan, Iceland, and Norway still think it is OK to
 ignore worldwide public opinion, and even the
increasing anti-whaling views of their own
 populations.

One bit of recent news cheered me up a little.
Holiday giant Thomas Cook has announced
it will stop selling trips to aquariums and
animal parks that keep killer whales,
orcas, in captivity.

The tourism giant said it had made the decision
because more than 90 per cent of its customers
 were concerned about animal welfare, hence
they will no longer sell tickets to SeaWorld
in
Florida and Loro Parque in Tenerife.

“When so many of our customers are so clear in
 their view, I could not allow our business to
ignore them,” Peter Fankhauser CEO of
Thomas Cook said.

Less good news has just arrived with the return of
the Icelandic whaling fleet after killing a very rare,
threatened - and supposedly legally protected -
blue whale.

The Icelanders rushed to find DNA evidence
that it was only a blue whale hybrid.

After viewing the photographic evidence of the dead
whale being winched aboard the ship, most experts
agreed --- the corpse had all the features of the
largest animal that has ever existed on Earth.
Mottled blue skin, black baleen, tiny hooked
dorsal fin — a blue whale.

The Icelandic fleet had resumed its whale hunt in June,
 after a three-year break -- caused by the Tokyo
government being unhappy with the standard
of the meat Iceland was seeking to sell
 to Japan.

Others suggested that the real reason was that
 the demand for whale meat in Japan, was
falling dramatically.

This year Iceland set itself a target of 191 fin whales
 and early reports suggest it has met this target.
Most meat will be heading for the sushi bars of
 Japan, the Icelanders hope, but the
international freight shipping
market - and many ports -
refuse to have anything
to do with this bloody
 trade.

A recent poll by Iceland itself, shows that, even in Iceland,
 support for whaling continues to drop. Only 34 per cent
of Icelanders now support continued commercial
whaling, while another 34 per cent of Icelanders
 say they are opposed to whaling - 31 per cent
say they are neutral.

As recently as five years ago a solid majority of Icelanders
 supported whaling. A 2013 poll found that 60 per cent of
 Icelanders supported it, while only 18% opposed it.

Another whaling nation, Norway, hasn’t just continued
whaling, but has angered environmentalists, by
provocatively announcing a 28 per cent
 increase of its annual whaling quota
 to 1,278 whales.

This, despite the fact that, in recent years, Norway’s
 whalers have failed to catch the quotas set by Oslo
 - and the number of whaling ships has plummeted.

The Norwegian government hopes that, by raising the
quota, more whalers will join the fleet — there were
just 11 Norwegian whaling ships in 2017 and that
 was just half of the previous year’s number.

Norway, says it only hunts the minke whale,
 which it kills, using explosive harpoons.

In both Norway and Iceland few people actually eat
whale any longer. In Iceland most is consumed by
tourists curious to sample the exotic, if
contentious, novelty.

Most of the Icelandic whale meat is sold to Japan
 but over the last few years the Icelandic whalers
 have had great difficulty finding ships or transit
ports prepared to handle the bloody cargo.

Which brings us to Japan itself. When three Japanese
whaling vessels returned to port from a controversial
trip to Antarctica earlier this year they had caught
333 minke whales. Tokyo claims the slaughter is
 for scientific purposes.

Japan is a signatory to the International Whaling
Commission moratorium on whale hunting, but
makes use of a loophole, that allows the
mammals to be killed for scientific
research.

Commercial hunting of whales was banned in 1986, but
 Japan would like to see it permitted once more. Tokyo
makes no secret of the fact that slaughtered whales
 often end up being eaten.

After tiny samples go to the laboratory, the rest ends up on
Japan’s dining tables, or feeding Japan’s many lap dogs.

Tokyo’s insistence on continuing with whale hunts, draws
 regular protests worldwide and Japanese ships have
clashed at sea, in the past, with animal rights
campaigners. This season there appear to
have been no such protests at sea.

The most recent hunt killed 120 pregnant female whales
among the 333 total. The International Whaling
Commission said that, apart from the pregnant
whales, another 114 were immature.

The Japanese proudly displayed pictures of the
slaughtered pregnant whales, each slit open
to
reveal a fully developed foetus.

In 2014, the International Court of Justice ruled that
 the annual whale slaughter programme was for
commercial purposes, which is illegal.

The Japanese government scrapped the illegal
whaling programme and began a new one in
 2015, described as having a scientific
purpose, but, again, it is clearly just a
cover, to continue whaling for profit.

Even in Japan, eating whale becomes less and less
popular. Much of the whale harvest ends up in
expensive treats for pet dogs. Still, Japan’s
 legendary pride won’t let it fall in to line
 with the rest of the world and ban the
 slaughter of whales forever.

Only a continued political campaign, against Iceland,
Norway and, most of all, Japan, will end this murder
forever. Are you playing your part, in saving
 the whale?

(Source - Morning Star)


___________________________________________________




Pope Francis tells top oil executives
world ‘must convert to clean fuel’
May 9th, at 9:56am

Pope Francis, addressing top oil company executives,
 has said that the world must convert to clean fuel,
Reuters reports.

 “Civilization requires energy but energy use must not
 destroy civilization,” he told the group at the end of
 a two-day conference in the Vatican on Saturday.

 He also noted that climate change was a challenge of
 “epochal proportions,” saying that the world needs to
 come up with an energy mix that combats pollution,
 eliminates poverty, and promotes social justice.

The pope wrote a major document on protecting
 the environment from global warming, in 2015.

(Source - RT)



___________________________________________________




Beekeepers stage funeral for
France's dying bee population
Thursday June 7th, at 3:03pm

Bees in France are fast dying, say beekeepers who
 staged a mock funeral in central Paris on Thursday.

French beekeepers say an average of 30 percent of
 bee colonies died, following the last winter, due to
pesticides used across the country.

They said the ravaged bee population has severely
affected the honey harvest, hence threatening
their livelihood.

The colonies have deteriorated so badly that some
 beekeepers may not be able to carry on,
demonstrators said.

A small delegation marched toward the
presidential palace, but was stopped
by police.

Pesticides destroy insects and other organisms harmful
to cultivated plants and crops, with knock-on effects
through the food chain.

An EU court last month upheld a partial ban on three
insecticides known as neonicotinoids, saying the
European Commission had been right, in 2013, to
restrict their use, to protect bees.

(Source: Reuters)


________________________________________________


EU court upholds partial ban
on pesticides threatening bees
 May 17th, at 8:23am

An EU court upheld a partial ban on three insecticides
 known as neonicotinoids, on Thursday.

The General Court of the European Union, said that
 the European Commission had been right to restrict
 their use in order to protect bees. The ruling covers
 three active substances - imidacloprid developed
by Bayer CropScience, clothianidin developed
by Takeda Chemical Industries and Bayer Crop-
Science, as well as Syngenta’s thiamethoxam,
Reuters said.

 However, the court did annul restrictions on the use
of another pesticide BASF’s fipronil, because the
Commission had not carried out “an adequate
assessment” of the impact of its measures.

___________________________


Huge dead zone in Gulf of Oman

 is far worse than feared - but
 what is it?
May 1st, 2018, at 1:48pm

A large ‘dead zone’ in the Gulf of Oman is increasing in size,
 according to scientists who warn the oxygen-scarce area
is worse than previously thought and poses a threat to
the environment. But what does that mean?

The dead zone in the Arabian Sea is now the world’s
biggest Oxygen Minimum Zone (OMZ). About the
size of Scotland or Florida, the dead zone
almost covers the entire Gulf of Oman,
which borders Iran, Oman, Pakistan
and the United Arab Emirates.

What is a dead zone?

A dead zone is an area of the sea or a large body of water
that’s almost entirely devoid of oxygen. The low-oxygen
areas are called dead zones as they can’t sustain
marine life. Fish, animals and plant life in the
zones suffocate as a result of low oxygen
 levels, while some marine life manages
to swim away from the area, leaving
it empty.

Scientists began noticing increasing areas of dead zones
in the 1970s. In 2008, 405 dead zones around the world
were noted by Sweden's Göteborg University.

One Third of 'Dead Zones' in World’s Oceans
 Around United States - Kerry

Roughly a third of all 'dead zones' in the
 world’s oceans, are in or around the US,
Secretary of State, John Kerry, revealed.

Conditions in Gulf of Oman

The existence of the Gulf of Oman dead zone has been known
for about 50 years, but the extent of the area has only recently
 been confirmed thanks to the use of underwater robots,
 called Seagliders.

“The Arabian Sea is the largest and thickest dead zone in the
 world. But until now, no-one really knew how bad the
situation was because piracy and conflicts in the
area have made it too dangerous to collect
data,”