RT – US President Donald Trump’s administration is withholding $105 million in security aid for Lebanon, Reuters reported, citing US officials.
The State Department told Congress on Thursday that the White House budget office and National Security Council had decided to withhold the foreign military assistance, the officials said.
It was not immediately clear why the aid was blocked. The administration had sought approval for the assistance starting in May, arguing that it was crucial for Lebanon, an important US partner in the Middle East.
Following PM Saad Hariri’s resignation on Tuesday amid huge protests against the ruling elite, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo urged Lebanon’s political leaders to help form a new government responsive to the needs of its people and called for an end to endemic corruption.
RT – Progressives and environmental activists who take “indulgent and selfish” action aimed at creating economic damage to businesses they don’t like could face new penalties under a bold move announced by Australian PM Scott Morrison.
Scott Morrison, the Australian prime minister could be the first Western leader to call out the new-style radical activists on the economic damage their “indulgent and selfish” actions cause, and in doing so has stirred up a hornet’s nest.
Speaking to the Queensland Resources Council in the northern Australian state today he revived talk of penalising environmental and other activist groups for targeting businesses who provide services to the resource industry, in what is known as secondary boycotting.
Morrison said that progressives were looking to tell Australians, “what you can say, what you can think and tax you more for the privilege of all those instructions.”
He went on, “Apocalyptic in tone, it brooks no compromise. It’s all or nothing. Alternative views are not permitted.”
“Environmental groups,” he said, “are targeting businesses and firms who provide goods or services to firms they don’t like, especially in the resources sector.”
“They are targeting businesses of all sizes, including small businesses, like contracting businesses in regional Queensland.”
“We are working to identify mechanisms that can successfully outlaw these indulgent and selfish practices that threaten the livelihoods of fellow Australians, especially in rural and regional areas, and especially here in Queensland.”
RT – Italy’s new Interior Minister Luciana Lamorgese has said that there is no migrant “invasion,” countering statements by her anti-immigration predecessor Matteo Salvini.
Lamorgese told the Repubblica newspaper in an interview published on Friday that this year 9,600 migrants and asylum seekers arrived in Italy, compared to 22,000 in 2018.
Lamorgese, 66, a former civil servant who has no political affiliation, made the statement after Salvini spoke of a “tripling” of migrant landings in Italy and called for the “invasion” to stop, AFP reported.
“We are not facing any invasion,” said Lamorgese, who took up her role in September after the formation of the new coalition government between the Five Star Movement and the center-left Democratic Party.
Al Jazeera – Turkish and Russian troops began their first joint ground patrols in northeast Syria on Friday under a deal between the two countries that forced Kurdish fighters to evacuate from a so-called “safe zone” on the Syrian side of the border.
Turkey and allied Syrian rebels launched a cross-border offensive on October 9 against the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG), dubbed “terrorists” by Turkey, seizing control of 120km-long (75 miles) and 30km-deep (19 miles) strip of land along the frontier.
Russia has told Turkey that the YPG left the strip on Wednesday, a week after Ankara and Moscow agreed to remove the YPG fighters from the area.
Al Jazeera – Phones of activists, lawyers, journalists hacked as part of spying scandal, as government seeks answers from WhatsApp.
BBC – Nigel Farage has called on Boris Johnson to drop his Brexit deal or face his party’s candidates in every seat.
Speaking at the Brexit Party’s election campaign launch, he called on the PM to “build a Leave alliance” and seek a free trade agreement with the EU.
If Mr Johnson refuses, Mr Farage said he already had 500 candidates he could field against the Tories in seats across England, Scotland and Wales.
The Conservatives have consistently ruled out a formal pact with the party.
A Tory source told the BBC: “A vote for Farage risks letting Jeremy Corbyn into Downing Street via the back door. It will not get Brexit done and it will create another gridlocked Parliament that doesn’t work.”
It comes after President Donald Trump said Mr Farage and Boris Johnson should team up as “an unstoppable force”.
Infowars – A billboard has appeared in London encouraging white people to sterilize themselves to solve overpopulation.
The sign, which was put up on Holloway Road, says “Imagine a city less crowded… do your part–get sterilised! Yay!”
The advertisement betrays a noticeable lack of ‘diversity’ as it only features caricatures of white people and no people of color.
Another Twitter user responded to the image by noting that a similar billboard had been erected in his home country of Portugal.
Breitbart – President Donald Trump, a lifelong New Yorker, has switched his primary residence from Manhattan to Palm Beach, Florida, according to the New York Times.
Documents filed with the Palm Beach County Circuit Court show the president and first lady Melania Trump submitted a “declaration of domicile” stating their permanent residence is the Mar-a-Lago Club.
If I maintain another place or places of abode in some other state or states, I hereby declare that my above-described residence and abode in the State of Florida constitutes my predominant and principal home, and I intend to continue it permanently as such,” the president’s document reportedly reads. “I formerly resided at 721 Fifth Avenue,” the filing adds in reference to Trump Tower in New York.
Breitbart – Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad echoed Russian doubts about the death of Islamic State “caliph” Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi in an extensive interview published Friday, attributing most American political developments to “Hollywood.”
The regime-run Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) published Assad’s interview in full, which touches on, among other topics, the al-Baghdadi raid, his opinion of President Donald Trump, a potential hot war with Turkey, and his hope to integrate Kurdish groups into his regime.
The Free Thought Project –
(CD) President Donald Trump on Monday said the Justice Department is preparing to launch a sweeping crackdown on crime that he named “the surge,” a term commonly associated with the George W. Bush administration’s decision to send tens of thousands of additional troops into Iraq in 2007.
“In coming weeks, Attorney General Barr will announce a new crackdown on violent crime—which I think is so important—targeting gangs and drug traffickers in high crime cities and dangerous rural areas,” Trump said during the International Association of Chiefs of Police conference in Chicago. “Let’s call it the surge.”
The president did not provide any details on the plan but said it is going to be “very dramatic.”
“And you’re going to see tremendous results very quickly,” Trump added.
As if to emphasize his view of America’s cities as war zones, Trump went on to tout his administration’s success in putting military equipment into the hands of U.S. police officers and claimed “Afghanistan is a safe place” compared to Chicago.
“To help keep you safe, I’ve made $600 million-worth of surplus military equipment available to local law enforcement,” Trump told the audience of police chiefs. “If you remember, the previous administration didn’t want to do that… They didn’t want to make you look so tough. They didn’t want to make you look like you’re a threat.”
Watch Trump’s remarks: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3NmX4GdLFn8
The Guardian – Donald Trump has insisted he has “done nothing wrong” and does not deserve to be impeached, and made the extraordinary suggestion that he appear on live TV to read the full transcript of his controversial phone call with the Ukrainian president in a “fireside chat”.
On the evening of the historic day that the House of Representatives voted to formalize impeachment proceedings against him, Trump proclaimed his innocence in an Oval Office interview with the Washington Examiner.
Meanwhile, the speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, who announced the launch of the impeachment inquiry in September, appeared on Stephen Colbert’s late-night TV show and said: “I pray for the United States of America.”
Pelosi said: “It’s very sad. We don’t want to impeach a president. We don’t want the reality that a president has done something that is in violation of the constitution.”
Newsmax – Elizabeth Warren promised Friday to spend more than $20 trillion over the next decade to provide government-funded healthcare to every American without raising middle class taxes — finally answering questions about how to implement the massive “Medicare for All” program without taking a larger bite out of most Americans’ salaries.
The Massachusetts senator famously “has a plan” for everything from providing universal child care to canceling college debt, but details of how she’d pay for her health plan come with far higher political stakes. Warren spent weeks, and two straight Democratic presidential primary debates, refusing to provide a straight answer on if she’d have to increase middle class taxes to make the numbers work.
Activist Post – The California wildfire catastrophe continues for many residents even after the fires go out. Vulnerable residents are left with a mess to clean up or their homes have been reduced to ashes.
But even as the ashes are settling, residents of wildfire-ravaged areas that the California Department of Insurance is calling “The Wildland-Urban Interface” or WUI, are facing yet another looming threat. National big-name insurance companies offering home and property insurance are cutting their losses and evacuating California in droves, leaving entire communities in financial crisis.
California communities, already devastated by wildfires or even just in high-risk fire zones, are facing double and triple rate hikes or being dropped from their insurance carriers altogether, reports The Sacramento Bee:
Two consecutive disastrous wildfire seasons have created a budding insurance crisis for thousands of Californians who live in and around fire-prone areas. Stung by $24 billion in losses, insurers are imposing rate hikes or dumping customers altogether, leaving homeowners to seek replacement policies that can be two or three times as expensive. (source)
CS Monitor – Plummeting cranberry prices and the country’s ongoing trade wars have America’s cranberry industry eyeing a possible new savior: solar power.
Some cranberry farmers in Massachusetts, the nation’s second-largest grower after Wisconsin, are proposing to build solar panels above the bogs they harvest each fall.
It’s a novel approach to blending renewable energy technology with traditional farming that’s been researched across the world but hasn’t been tried before on large scale, commercial crop cultivation, according to solar power and agricultural industry experts. The basic idea is to build solar arrays high enough off the ground and in more spaced-out clusters to allow for crops to be safely grown and harvested underneath.
Cranberry farmers hope to shoulder lean times for their industry by gleaning extra revenue – in the form of long-term land leases with solar developers – while still producing the same quality berries they have for generations. An ongoing, nationwide study also suggests certain crops in particular climates can thrive under solar panels, though it’s unclear at this point how cranberries will fare.
The Verge – Google has just announced that it’s buying wearable company Fitbit for $2.1 billion. In a blog post announcing the news, Google SVP of devices and services Rick Osterloh said that the Fitbit purchase is “an opportunity to invest even more in Wear OS as well as introduce Made by Google wearable devices into the market.”
Activist Post – Police and government agencies are becoming increasingly reliant on facial recognition software to hunt for suspects, despite the fact that this technology is notorious for falsely identifying innocent people as criminals.
In one of the most recent cases, Amazon’s facial recognition technology falsely identified 27 different professional athletes as criminals. While it may be true that professional football players have been known to get in trouble from time to time, this is obviously a failure of the software.
The software is called “Rekognition,” and it has made numerous high-profile mistakes since its launch in 2016. This is the same facial recognition system that accidentally identified one in five California lawmakers as criminals, although depending on your perspective on politics, you might think that they are all criminals.
CNN – China just switched on the world’s largest 5G network.
The country’s three state-run telecom operators launched services for the next generation wireless technology on Friday.
China Mobile (CHL), China Telecom (CHA) and China Unicom (CHU) are all offering 5G plans that start at 128 yuan ($18) for 30 GB of data per month, giving Chinese internet users access to the ultra fast service.
5G commercial services are now available in 50 cities, including Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen, according to Chinese state news agency Xinhua. In Shanghai, nearly 12,000 5G base stations have been activated to support 5G coverage across the city’s key outdoor areas.
Other countries including the United States and South Korea launched 5G services in select areas earlier this year. But China’s commercial network is the biggest, according to Bernstein Research, giving the county more influence over the technology’s global evolution.
“The scale of its network and the price of its 5G services will have a pivotal impact throughout the supply chain,” Bernstein analyst Chris Lane said in a research note earlier this week.
NaturalNews – A shocking new gene sequencing investigation has found that MMR vaccines are deliberately engineered to cause cancer as a repeat business model for Big Pharma, which manufactures vaccines and cancer treatment drugs for profit.
MMR vaccines were found to contain the complete gene sequence of a specific human (aborted) baby whose genes were modified to express cancer. In all, over 500 genes were altered to heighten the expression of cancer.
The CDC openly admits that these aborted human fetal cells are known ingredients in vaccines. The altered genes are found in ingredients called “MRC-5” or “WI-38,” both of which are openly acknowledged by the CDC as ingredients in vaccines. (See the CDC’s excipient table document here – PDF.)
The same aborted human fetal genes, modified to promote cancer, are also found in chicken pox vaccines. See the proof of WI-38 and MRC-5 ingredients in the Varivax vaccine via the FDA’s official website at this link.
The MMR vaccine from Glaxo Smith Kline also contains modified, aborted human fetal cells. See the GSK MMR insert sheet here.
An FDA researcher has previously warned the agency that viruses used in vaccines may cause “activation” of cancer genes which are also inserted into vaccines. Via FDA.gov:
In some cases the cell lines that are used might be tumorigenic, that is, they form tumors when injected into rodents. Some of these tumor-forming cell lines may contain cancer-causing viruses that are not actively reproducing. Such viruses are hard to detect using standard methods. These latent, or “quiet,” viruses pose a potential threat, since they might become active under vaccine manufacturing conditions.
NaturalNews – We know that eating processed food isn’t good for you, but much of the criticism has been tied to the clear links between the chemicals these foods contain and illnesses like cancer and diabetes. However, a new study in Cell Metabolism has finally concluded that an ultra-processed diet leads to weight gain as well.
In the past, it has been a tricky area to study as making direct correlations can be challenging. This is the first controlled, randomized study to directly compare the differences in people’s calorie consumption and weight gain on an unprocessed food diet versus one that is ultra-processed.
The researchers discovered that even when both diets were perfectly matched in amounts of fats, sugars, salt, calories, and carbohydrates, people simply ate more food and gained more weight when eating a diet of ultra-processed foods.
They reached their findings after studying healthy volunteers who stayed at the National Institutes of Health’s Metabolical Clinical Research Unit for one month. They were given one type of diet for two weeks and then switched to the other one for a further two weeks.
Regardless of which diet they were given, they had three meals a day, along with access to water and snacks that were either processed or unprocessed depending on which group they were in. They were instructed to eat as much food as they wanted, and researchers measured the quantities of food they consumed.
Just what was considered ultra-processed food for the purposes of the study? At breakfast, for example, participants might eat Honey Nut Cheerios cereal with whole milk that had added fiber, or a packaged blueberry muffin with margarine.
Newsmax – Alpha-gal may sound like a Super Hero, but in fact it’s a potentially deadly allergic reaction to red meat most commonly caused by a bite from a tick, particularly the lone star tick. The bite transmits sugar molecules called galactose, alpha 1-3 galactose (shortened to alpha-gal) which, in some people, triggers an immune system reaction that later produces mild to severe allergic reactions when they eat red meat.
According to the Mayo Clinic, the signs and symptoms include:
“It is important to protect yourself from tick bites for a number of reasons, not the least of which is the potential for becoming allergic to the alpha-gal molecule,” Dr. Andy Nish, MD, an allergy expert at the NGPG Allergy and Asthma center in Gainesville, Georgia, tells Newsmax. “Alpha-gal disease is different from other allergies in several aspects. First, it requires a tick bite to become allergic. Secondly, alpha-gal is a carbohydrate whereas most allergies are to proteins. Finally, most allergic reactions to food occur within two hours of consuming that food. However, with an alpha-gal allergy, the reaction may occur four to eight hours after meals, frequently waking the affected person from sleep at night.”
If you do suffer from any of the symptoms above after consuming a meat meal, experts advise taking Benadryl or using an EpiPen, if you have one. It’s important to see your primary care physician or an allergist if you suspect that you have alpha-gal. He or she can perform a simple blood test that may pinpoint an alpha-gal connection, along with your history.