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Open the Congo files and face up to what the CIA did
2023-10-24, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2023/10/24/congo-lumumba-cia-amends/

Never in its 63 years of independence has Congo experienced a peaceful and democratic transfer of power. On June 30, 1960, after 75 years of Belgian rule, Congo became an independent country. At the helm as prime minister was Patrice Lumumba. On Aug. 18, 1960, Dwight D. Eisenhower became the first U.S. president known to order the assassination of a sitting foreign leader. During a National Security Council meeting, an official note taker ... recalled, President Eisenhower said “something — I can no longer remember his words— that came across to me as an order for the assassination of Lumumba.” The CIA’s top chemist procured a poison to kill Lumumba, flew it to Congo, and instructed the CIA station chief there, Larry Devlin, to put it in the prime minister’s food or toothpaste. But by that time, Lumumba had been removed from office and put under house arrest, so the plot fizzled. Lumumba was flown to the breakaway province of Katanga and shot dead ... by Congolese soldiers commanded by Belgian officers and answering to the separatist government. The CIA ... had blood on its hands for the death of Lumumba. It played a role in every event leading to his downfall. As part of what came to be known as “Project Wizard,” the CIA subsidized at least two opposition senators, and the agency received White House authorization to pay the president as well. CIA cash also paid for anti-Lumumba radio propaganda and street protests.

Note: Learn more about the rise of the CIA in our comprehensive Military-Intelligence Corruption Information Center. For more, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on intelligence agency corruption from reliable major media sources.


Police love Google’s surveillance data. Here’s how to protect yourself.
2023-10-24, Washington Post
https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2023/10/24/google-privacy-police-ge...

A recent court ruling in Colorado highlighted how Google’s tracking of our locations and web searches helps police find suspects when they have few leads — but it’s also sweeping innocent people into investigations. Google says it has procedures to “protect the privacy of our users while supporting the important work of law enforcement.” But defense attorneys and civil liberties advocates say that Google is a gold mine for novel police methods that they call unconstitutional fishing expeditions. Even if you believe you have nothing to hide from law enforcement, relentless digital tracking of Americans risks our information falling into criminals’ hands, too. Law enforcement officials say that Google’s data on people’s locations and search histories helps solve crimes, including in the 2021 Capitol riot. In initial court-ordered warrants to Google, the company typically gives police information that isn’t connected to people’s identity. Only after they single out potentially suspicious data do the police go back for individually identifiable information. But defense lawyers and privacy advocates say the two types of broad warrants to Google turn normal police work upside down and threaten Americans’ rights. In a typical search warrant, police have a suspect in mind and ask for a judge’s approval to search their home, phone data and other potential evidence. In the large-scale search term and location warrants, police know a crime occurred but don’t know who might have committed it.

Note: Explore news articles we've summarized on the troubling nature of the use of location tracking by governments and corporations. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on police corruption and the disappearance of privacy from reliable major media sources.


DHS Must Overhaul Its Flawed Automated Systems
2023-10-24, Brennan Center for Justice
https://www.brennancenter.org/our-work/analysis-opinion/dhs-must-overhaul-its...

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is likely the single largest collector and consumer in the U.S. government of detailed, often intimate, information about Americans and foreigners alike. The department stores and analyzes this information using vast data systems to determine who can enter the country and who is subjected to intrusive inspections, including by parsing through travel records, social media data, non-immigrant visa applications, and other information to detect patterns of behavior that the department has determined are worthy of scrutiny. As we explain in a new Brennan Center report, these systems ... are too often deployed in discriminatory ways that violate Americans’ constitutional rights and civil liberties. It is past time for DHS to stop improvising how it designs and implements its automated systems, with inadequate mechanisms for evaluation and oversight, weak standards, and disproportionate impacts on marginalized communities and individuals. DHS must disclose additional information about its systems, including the policies that govern their operations and reports explaining how they are used. An independent body should undertake a rigorous investigation of DHS’s automated systems, evaluating whether they are useful and accurate, assessing how they function, and determining whether they contain sufficient safeguards to protect privacy, civil rights, and civil liberties.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and the disappearance of privacy from reliable major media sources.


Eighty Percent of the Population Will Get Treated for Mental Illness in their Lifetime—and They’re Worse Off Afterward
2023-10-23, Mad in America
https://www.madinamerica.com/2023/10/eighty-percent-of-the-population-will-ge...

A new study published in JAMA Psychiatry finds that almost everyone will be treated for mental illness at some point in their lives and that their lives are worse in many ways after receiving diagnosis and treatment. About 80% of the population will be hospitalized or receive psychiatric drugs. After treatment, they are more likely to end up poor, unemployed, and receiving disability benefits, and they have worsening social connections. According to the researchers, the likelihood of getting prescribed psychiatric drugs during your lifetime was 82.6% (87.5% for women and 76.7% for men). The likelihood of being hospitalized for mental illness was 29.0% (31.8% for women and 26.1% for men). On average, the 80% who were treated for mental illness were already struggling before treatment. But after treatment, things only got worse. After treatment, “individuals with any mental health disorder were more likely to experience new socioeconomic difficulties, compared with control individuals from the general population,” the researchers write. “During follow-up, they were more likely to become unemployed or receive a disability benefit, to earn lower income, to be living alone, and to be unmarried.” There is copious evidence that antidepressant use leads to worse outcomes in the long term, even after controlling for the severity of depression and other factors. The adverse effects of the drugs lead to worse health outcomes for those taking them, and withdrawal symptoms prevent people from being able to discontinue.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on health from reliable major media sources. Then explore the excellent, reliable resources provided in our Health Information Center.


Media Decides Censorship Is Bad Now That It Hits The Left
2023-10-23, Public on Substack
https://public.substack.com/p/media-decides-censorship-is-bad-now

The Washington Post has published at least four long articles dismissing the censorship revealed by the Twitter Files and Missouri v. Biden lawsuit, which is headed to the Supreme Court. By contrast, in its story on the censorship of pro-Palestinian voices, the Washington Post expresses great skepticism of Big Tech and sympathy for the people censored — the exact opposite of how it treated the issue when it was non-Leftists who were being censored. To be sure, there has been a concerning increase in demands for censorship and blacklisting since the October 7 Hamas attacks. New York University appears to be investigating a student who said, “Israel bears full responsibility for this tremendous loss of life.” But the alarm that the news media are raising is in striking contrast to the indifference ... to the evidence of governmental and nongovernmental censorship of a variety of disfavored views and voices relating to climate change, Covid, Ukraine, and the Biden family’s influence-peddling. Media outrage about censorship of pro-Palestinian voices sent social media platforms scrambling in order to end the censorship. The Washington Post’s queries forced at least one social media company to stop censoring. “After The Washington Post sent questions to TikTok about the video, the sound was restored.” A Meta spokesperson said a “bug” had caused some of the trouble. “We fixed a problem that briefly caused inappropriate Arabic translations in some of our products,” the statement said.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on media corruption from reliable sources.


What will the children who survive the onslaught of Gaza think of those who let it happen?
2023-10-23, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2023/oct/23/israel-palestine-childr...

The screams of children are difficult to hear over the noise and fury of the Gaza maelstrom. In a joint statement on Sunday, the US, Britain, France, Germany, Italy and Canada called for “adherence to international humanitarian law, including the protection of civilians”. But they know full well that, in Gaza, the exact opposite is happening. And it’s not only them. The likes of China and Russia are doing nothing to stop it, either. Last week, the Save the Children charity reported that one child in Gaza was being killed every 15 minutes. On Saturday, the Euro-Med Human Rights Monitor was estimating a daily death toll of 200 children and infants. Of the more than 4,600 Palestinians killed since Israeli forces began their bombardment, about 40% are children, the Hamas-run Palestinian health ministry says. Behind these stark figures lies a world of pain. At least 3,250 children have been injured, with 1,240 needing specialised medical care, as of last week. Many have extensive burns and shrapnel wounds or have lost limbs. Yet hospitals and clinics that have been damaged or destroyed or are short of medical supplies – due to Israel’s siege – are unable to treat them adequately. “Israel’s bombardment and unlawful total blockade of Gaza mean that countless wounded and sick children, among many other civilians, will die for want of medical care,” said Human Rights Watch. Killing and targeting civilians, especially children, is illegal under international humanitarian law.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on war from reliable major media sources.


Is Biden Willing to Damage Relations With a Staunch Ally Like Australia in His Headlong Prosecution of Julian Assange?
2023-10-22, LA Progressive
https://www.laprogressive.com/law-and-the-justice-system/headlong-prosecution...

Last month, a multi-party delegation of Australian Members of Parliament visited the United States to actively lobby U.S. officials to cease their efforts to extradite Julian Assange. The founder of Wikileaks is an Australian citizen facing charges filed by the Trump administration under the infamous Espionage Act of 1917 for revealing US war crimes and violations of international law. The revelations were called “Cable gate,” a set of 251,000 confidential cables from the US State Department that disclosed corruption, diplomatic scandals and spy affairs on an international scale. On January 4, 2021, British criminal court judge Vanessa Baraister denied the US government’s request to extradite Assange. Given the fact that he had been confined in the Ecuadorian embassy for seven years and then held in the Balmarsh high-security prison since April 12, 2019, the judge found that Assange’s mental condition “is such that it would be oppressive to extradite him to the United States of America.” The Biden DOJ appealed that ruling and convinced the British higher courts to reverse Judge Baraister. As a result, Assange is now subject to extradition unless his further legal appeals can prevail. For Australians, securing the release of Assange is broadly supported by a coalition that transcends partisan politics. The Australian delegation last month included members of Parliament from the majority Labor Party, the conservative opposition, the Greens, the National party, and an independent party.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


Ozempic, Mounjaro manufacturers testing weight loss drugs for kids
2023-10-22, MSN News
https://www.msn.com/en-us/health/other/ozempic-mounjaro-manufacturers-testing...

Companies that make popular weight loss shots like Ozempic and Mounjaro are starting to test a version for kids as young as six years old who suffer from obesity. Pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly signaled its plans to start clinical trials with Mounjaro for kids ages 6-11, over the weekend. Novo Nordisk, the company that makes Ozempic, reported it is in phase three of testing Saxenda, a version of its drug for children ages 6-12. The rates of obesity for children in the U.S. have tripled since the 1980s, affecting close to 15 million children nationwide, according to the CDC. This is nearly one in five kids. “It’s unlikely it’s going to do much if you just give them the medication. You need to instill all these behavior changes, lifestyle changes, talk about the diet, nutrition consults, the exercise,” said pediatrician Dr. Alison Mitzner. The concern for possible long-term impacts and side effects is one nutritionist Carrie Lupoli echoes. Both drug companies were sued earlier this year after a plaintiff said she suffered stomach paralysis. “It’s scary to me that we are going down that path instead of actually working on the root cause because we know weight gain is a symptom of health and hormones,” Lupoli said. CDC data shows kids may have gained weight twice as fast during the pandemic. Earlier this year, the American Academy of Pediatrics came out with new guidance that includes medication and surgery as suggestions for patients 12 and up suffering from obesity.

Note: The pharmaceutical companies behind these weight loss drugs are raking it in despite significant efficacy and safety concerns. Sales of Ozempic generated revenue of $3.2 billion in the second quarter (up from $2.1 billion during the same period in 2022) and Mounjaro generated $980 million in sales for the company during the second quarter (a 72% increase compared to the first quarter). For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on Big Pharma corruption from reliable major media sources.


The U.N. Is Powerless to Help Gaza. That’s How the U.S. Wants It.
2023-10-21, The Intercept
https://theintercept.com/2023/10/21/security-council-veto-united-nations/

On Wednesday, the United States was the only country to vote “no” on a proposed U.N. Security Council resolution authored by Brazil that called for “humanitarian pauses” in Israel’s bombing of Gaza. Twelve countries voted for the resolution, including several surprising ones, such as France and the United Arab Emirates. Two more, Russia and the U.K., abstained. But according to the Security Council’s rules, America’s sole “no” vote meant that the resolution failed. The Security Council has 15 countries. Ten are rotating members, elected by the U.N. General Assembly and serving on the council for a period of two years. Five are permanent members: the U.S., Russia, China, France, and the U.K. If any of the permanent members vetoes a resolution, it will not pass, no matter how many votes are in favor. The first U.S. veto to protect Israel occurred in 1972. Since then, the U.S. has vetoed about four dozen more resolutions criticizing Israel. Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, Russia has similarly vetoed numerous resolutions to protect its own client state, Syria, as well as itself concerning Ukraine. Since the U.N.’s founding, it has largely always been a debating society because the world’s most powerful countries, led by the U.S., want it that way. There has recently been renewed energy at the U.N. to change things. However, given the fact that the five permanent members can block any changes, the best idea that anyone could come up with was to ask them nicely to change.

Note: Israel has been the largest recipient of U.S. military assistance, receiving $158 billion since the country’s establishment in 1948. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on war and government corruption from reliable major media sources.


Why Do UFO Sightings Keep Happening Near Nuclear Sites?
2023-10-20, Vice
https://www.vice.com/en/article/v7bxdx/why-do-ufo-sightings-keep-happening-ne...

The Enmyoin Temple in the Fukushima prefecture of Japan is now known colloquially by a different name, said its Chief Monk, Tomonori Izumi: “The Miracle Temple.” On March 11 2011, the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant was the site of one of the worst nuclear disasters ever after an earthquake and subsequent tsunami caused its electrical grid to fail. Miraculously, the temple was untouched. “ The UFO's came after the explosion. There were so many of them. I was shocked,” said the monk. “Radioactive energy was leaking everywhere. I believe the UFOs came to readjust the flood of radioactive energy in order to save us. That's my theory, anyway,” said Izumi. UFO’s have been documented repeatedly around places where humans have spawned nuclear activity. Andresen cited declassified U.S. government reports from agencies like the FBI and CIA about UFO sightings near nuclear sites, saying she had looked at 39 different accounts between the 1940s and 1990s. “It goes back to the 1930s when the science and research was being done to understand fission. But then it really heats up in the 1940s, in particular, right after the detonation of the two atomic bombs in Japan in 1945. Then ... you see one after another event occurring in proximity specifically to sites associated with nuclear weapons,” said Andresen. “There was a lot of UFO activity reported [around Chernobyl] also. At the height of the fire in Chernobyl, the reading was 3000 milliroentgens, which is a unit of ionizing radiation. And right at the height of the fire, many people observed a UFO come, stayed for 3 minutes, shown a light right at Unit 4 and departed,” she said. “They took another reading and it had apparently dropped to 800. That seems like a very conscious attempt to remediate the danger caused by the malfunction there.”

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on UFOs from reliable major media sources.


Rojava’s Women-Led Restorative Justice System Centers Mediation, Not Retribution
2023-10-20, Truthout
https://truthout.org/articles/rojavas-women-led-restorative-justice-system-ce...

A growing women-led restorative justice system ... operates within the territory of the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria (AANES), also known as Rojava, a revolutionary social experiment involving more than 4.5 million people. The system features a network, autonomous from the AANES, of more than 60 Mala Jin, or “women’s houses,” which allow people to solve disputes at the community level, instead of through courts or police, by offering reconciliation and mediation processes for domestic and family situations. Activist and independent researcher Clara Moore ... recently returned from spending two years in the region, working at both the Rojava Information Center and at Mala Jin. "Essentially, they’re trying to build a system around the political philosophy of Democratic Confederalism, which was initially inspired by the ideas of [the American intellectual] Murray Bookchin and theorized by [Kurdish leader] Abdullah Öcalan from prison in Turkey," [said Moore]. "It’s based on ideas of pluralism, direct democracy, decentralization, gender equality and self-defense. In practice, this means that all communities have the ability and right to defend themselves and provide for their own needs. The idea of the justice system in Rojava, in North and East Syria in general, is that it’s possible to solve a dispute without going to court. There are laws in Rojava and courts. Ideally, those only become relevant when people can’t come to a resolution together outside of court."

Note: Explore more positive stories like this in our comprehensive inspiring news articles archive focused on solutions and bridging divides.


Law enforcement eyes opioid settlement cash for squad cars and body scanners
2023-10-20, NPR
https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2023/10/20/1206326239/law-enforceme...

Policing expenses mount quickly: $18,000 for technology to unlock cellphones in Southington, Conn.; $2,900 for surveillance cameras and to train officers and canines in New Lexington, Ohio. And in other communities around the country, hundreds of thousands for vehicles, body scanners, and other equipment. State and local governments are turning to a new means to pay those bills: opioid settlement cash. This money — totaling more than $50 billion across 18 years — comes from national settlements with more than a dozen companies that made, sold, or distributed opioid painkillers, including Johnson & Johnson, AmerisourceBergen, and Walmart, which were accused of fueling the epidemic that addicted and killed millions. In August, more than 200 researchers and clinicians delivered a call to action to government officials in charge of opioid settlement funds. "More policing is not the answer to the overdose crisis," they wrote. Years of research suggests law enforcement and criminal justice initiatives have exacerbated the problem. "Police activity is actually causing the very harms that police activity is supposed to be stemming," says Jennifer Carroll, an author of that study and an addiction policy researcher. In Louisiana ... 80% of settlement dollars are flowing to parish governments and 20% to sheriffs' departments. Over the lifetime of the settlements, sheriffs' offices in the state will receive more than $65 million — the largest direct allocation to law enforcement nationwide. And they do not have to account for how they spend it.

Note: Explore past news articles we've summarized on opioids, a crisis fueled by US drug companies and captured government agencies. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on police corruption from reliable major media sources.


‘On Thin Ice’: Some Biden Administration Staffers Feel Stifled Discussing Horrors In Gaza
2023-10-18, Huffington Post
https://www.huffpost.com/entry/biden-administration-gaza-dissent_n_652f42b0e4...

President Joe Biden departed for Israel on Tuesday evening on a high-stakes diplomatic visit amid ongoing Israeli-Palestinian bloodshed. As Biden grapples with the crisis, several U.S. officials told HuffPost it has become difficult to have a full debate within his administration about what’s happening in Israel-Palestine and in particular that people who want to talk about Israeli restraint or humanitarian protections for Palestinians feel stifled. Several staffers across multiple agencies, most of whom work on national security issues, told HuffPost they and their colleagues worry about retaliation at work for questioning Israel’s conduct amid the U.S.-backed Israeli campaign to avenge an Oct. 7 attack by Hamas, the Palestinian militant group, that killed more than 1,400 Israelis. The fear is especially intense among staffers with Muslim backgrounds. On Sunday, presidential personnel office chief Gautam Raghavan organized a call with close to a dozen current and former high-level Muslim appointees to discuss their concerns. Some staffers said they felt unsafe voicing their opinions around colleagues because it could endanger their careers, according to a person on the call. The period since the Hamas attack represents “the first time in the administration that there was a real culture of silence,” one official said. “It feels like post-9/11 where you feel like your thoughts are being policed, and you’re really afraid of being seen as anti-American or an anti-Semite.”

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on war and government corruption from reliable major media sources.


A surprisingly radical proposal: Make people happier — not just wealthier and healthier
2023-10-18, Vox
https://www.vox.com/the-highlight/23862090/subjective-wellbeing-wealth-philan...

Economists love things they can measure objectively, like the number of deaths in a village or the number of dollars in an account. So over the past century, they’ve focused on measuring health and wealth. The best policy programs for society are deemed to be the ones that save the most lives, say, or increase gross domestic product (GDP) by the widest margin. And there’s a good rationale for using a metric like GDP as a shorthand for well-being: There is a very high correlation between a nation’s GDP per capita and its self-reported life satisfaction. But a strong predictor is not a perfect predictor. As we’ve gathered more data on the happiness of different populations, it’s become clear that increasing wealth and health do not always go hand in hand with increasing happiness. By the economists’ objective measures, people in rich countries like the US should be doing great — and yet Americans are only becoming more miserable. A growing chorus of experts argues that helping people is ultimately about making them happier — not just wealthier or healthier — and the best way to find out how happy people are is to just ask them directly. It’s a revolution in thinking that’s gathering force in policy and charity circles alike, and it’s starting to upend conventional wisdom about the best ways to do good. Part of the virtue of the subjective approach is that people can bring whatever matters to them into their assessments. So, how much meaning you have in your life could be an input into that.

Note: Explore more positive stories like this in our comprehensive inspiring news articles archive focused on solutions and bridging divides.


We owe it to humanity to see the rules of war are observed – no matter how tough a test the Israel-Hamas conflict proves
2023-10-18, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2023/oct/18/rules-of-war-israel-ham...

For almost 4,000 years, some governments have insisted that if wars must be fought, there should be rules. During its assault, on Black Saturday, Hamas broke numerous laws of war, starting with its rocket fire into Israel, which made no attempt to discriminate between military and civilian targets, breaking article 13 of protocol II of the Geneva conventions. Its fighters murdered, tortured and raped, breaking common article 3 of the Geneva conventions and articles 27 and 32 of the fourth convention. They also engaged in pillage and terrorism (33, fourth convention) and the taking of hostages (34, fourth, and article 8 of the Rome statute). In responding to this attack, Israel has also broken several laws of war. These crimes begin with the use of collective penalties against the people of Gaza (article 33 of the fourth convention and article 4 of protocol II). One aspect of this punishment appears to be the pattern of Israel’s bombing and shelling of Gaza. The war crime in this case is the damage to property: article 50 of the first Geneva convention, article 51 of the second Geneva convention and article 147 of the fourth Geneva convention. Many of the buildings hit, including numerous schools and health facilities, do not appear to qualify as military targets, despite Israeli claims that Hamas uses people as human shields. Such indiscriminate attacks contravene article 13, protocol II and article 53, fourth convention. The bombing of mosques breaks article 16 of protocol II.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on war from reliable major media sources.


Middle East War Adds to Surge in International Arms Sales
2023-10-17, New York Times
https://www.nytimes.com/2023/10/17/us/politics/israel-gaza-global-arms-sales....

The conflict between Israel and Hamas is just the latest impetus behind a boom in international arms sales that is bolstering profits and weapons-making capacity among American suppliers. The surge in sales is providing the Biden administration with new opportunities to tie the militaries of other countries more closely to the United States, the world’s biggest arms exporter, while also raising concerns that a more heavily armed world will be prone to careen into further wars. Even before Israel responded to the deadly Hamas attack, the combination of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the perception of a rising threat from China was spurring a global rush to purchase fighter planes, missiles, tanks, artillery, munitions and other lethal equipment. Worldwide military spending last year — on weapons, personnel and other costs — hit $2.2 trillion, the highest level in inflation-adjusted dollars since at least the end of the Cold War, according to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, which prepares an annual tally. Excluding sales within the United States, China and Russia, worldwide spending on military procurement is expected to hit $241 billion next year, a 23 percent increase since last year. That is by far the largest two-year increase in the database maintained by Janes, a company that has been tracking military spending for nearly two decades. As of last year, the United States controlled an estimated 45 percent of the world’s weapons exports, nearly five times more than any other nation.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on military corruption from reliable major media sources.


Why Big Tech, Cops, and Spies Were Made for One Another
2023-10-16, The Intercept
https://theintercept.com/2023/10/16/surveillance-state-big-tech/

Silicon Valley techies are pretty sanguine about commercial surveillance. But they are much less cool about government spying. Government employees and contractors are pretty cool with state surveillance. But they are far less cool with commercial surveillance. What are they both missing? That American surveillance is a public-private partnership: a symbiosis between a concentrated tech sector that has the means, motive, and opportunity to spy on every person in the world and a state that loves surveillance as much as it hates checks and balances. The tech sector has powerful allies in government: cops and spies. No government agency could ever hope to match the efficiency and scale of commercial surveillance. Meanwhile, the private sector relies on cops and spies to go to bat for them, lobbying against new privacy laws and for lax enforcement of existing ones. Think of Amazon’s Ring cameras, which have blanketed entire neighborhoods in CCTV surveillance, which Ring shares with law enforcement agencies, sometimes without the consent or knowledge of the cameras’ owners. Ring marketing recruits cops as street teams, showering them with freebies to distribute to local homeowners. Google ... has managed to play both sides of the culture war with its location surveillance, thanks to the “reverse warrants” that cops have used to identify all the participants at both Black Lives Matter protests and the January 6 coup. Distinguishing between state and private surveillance is a fool’s errand.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on the disappearance of privacy from reliable major media sources.


How Peter Thiel-Linked Tech is Fueling the Ukraine War
2023-10-15, ScheerPost
https://scheerpost.com/2023/10/15/how-peter-thiel-linked-tech-is-fueling-the-...

As war in Ukraine continues, controversial defense contractors and adjacent companies like Palantir, Anduril, and Clearview AI are taking advantage to develop and level-up controversial AI-driven weapons systems and surveillance technologies. These organizations’ common link? The support of the controversial, yet ever-more powerful Silicon Valley billionaire Peter Thiel. Thiel-backed groups’ involvement in war serves to develop not only problematic and unpredictable weapons technologies and systems, but also apparently to advance and further interconnect a larger surveillance apparatus formed by Thiel and his elite allies’ collective efforts across the public and private sectors, which arguably amount to the entrenchment of a growing technocratic panopticon aimed at capturing public and private life. What’s more, Thiel’s funding efforts signal interest in developing expansive surveillance technologies, especially in the name of combatting “pre-crime” through “predictive policing” style surveillance. As an example, Thiel’s provided significant funds to Israeli intelligence-linked startup Carbyne911 (as did Jeffrey Epstein), which develops call-handling and call-identification capacities for emergency services, and has ... a predictive-policing component. Thiel also assisted in the development and subsequent privatized spinoffs of the US Government’s Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency’s (DARPA) Total Information Awareness project.

Note: Peter Thiel was also recently reported to be an FBI informant. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and the disappearance of privacy from reliable major media sources.


Stunning State Department Memo Warns Diplomats: No Gaza 'De-Escalation' Talk
2023-10-13, Huffington Post
https://www.huffpost.com/entry/state-department-internal-emails-gaza-israel_n...

As Israel escalates its attacks on Gaza, the State Department is discouraging diplomats working on Middle East issues from making public statements suggesting the U.S. wants to see less violence. In messages circulated on Friday, State Department staff wrote that high-level officials do not want press materials to include three specific phrases: “de-escalation/ceasefire,” “end to violence/bloodshed” and “restoring calm.” The revelation provides a stunning signal about the Biden administration’s reluctance to push for Israeli restraint as the close U.S. partner expands the offensive it launched after Hamas ... attacked Israeli communities. U.S. officials have said they expect Israel to abide by the laws of war in its operation against Hamas. But they have avoided discussion of a ceasefire, even as aid groups and some analysts have suggested that may be essential to allow civilians to flee Gaza and allow vital supplies to enter the area after Israel cut off electricity and water. U.S. President Joe Biden has repeatedly pledged to support Israel as it seeks to avenge the unprecedented Hamas assault. Yet as Israel’s biggest source of diplomatic and military support, the U.S. has significant leverage in the matter of how the country chooses to seek retribution and whether Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu tries to limit the civilian toll of his response. Biden allies may nudge the president and his team to issue stronger calls for Netanyahu to prioritize humanitarian concerns.

Note: Why wasn’t this headline in other major media? Both Washington Post and NBC News included this in only one paragraph in longer articles as if it were unimportant. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on war from reliable major media sources.


CIA admits 1953 Iranian coup it backed was undemocratic
2023-10-13, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2023/oct/13/cia-1953-iran-coup-undemocrat...

The CIA has for the first time acknowledged that the 1953 coup it backed in Iran that overthrew its prime minister and cemented the rule of Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi was undemocratic. The CIA in 2013 admitted its role in the coup that brought down Iran’s then prime minister, Mohammad Mosaddeq, but until now has not publicly acknowledged that the move was undemocratic. Much of the agency’s official history of the coup remains classified, complicating the public’s understanding of an event that still resonates, as tensions remain high between Tehran and Washington. Iran’s mission to the United Nations described the 1953 coup as marking “the inception of relentless American meddling in Iran’s internal affairs” and dismissed the US acknowledgments. “The US admission never translated into compensatory action or a genuine commitment to refrain from future interference, nor did it change its subversive policy towards the Islamic Republic of Iran,” the mission said in a statement. Seven decades later, the 1953 coup remains as hotly debated as ever in Iran, where many see a straight line leading from the coup to the 1979 Islamic Revolution that ultimately toppled the shah. The coup also prompted the CIA into a series of further actions in other countries, including Guatemala, where US clandestine operations in 1954 installed a military dictator and sparked a 40-year civil war that likely killed approximately 245,000 people.

Note: This admission came in the CIA's official podcast. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on intelligence agency corruption from reliable major media sources.


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