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US Empire Views Ukrainians And Russians As Lab Rats For Weapons Testing

One of the many reasons the US and its complex network of allies, partners and assets are always fighting so many wars is because new weapons technology needs to be tested in battle before it can be deemed effective. What this means in practice is using human bodies as test subjects, the way a scientist uses laboratory rats or guinea pigs.

The US-centralized empire pretends to care about Ukrainian lives, but in reality it only cares about them to the extent that a researcher cares about his lab rats. And for exactly the same reason.

What could be more sinister than that? Well, the agendas that they are running those tests in preparation for, I suppose.

Caitlin Johnstone, Nov 18 2022,

A surprisingly frank article by The New York Times titled “Western Allies Look to Ukraine as a Testing Ground for Weapons” describes how the imperial war machine is capitalising on the US proxy war to test its weapons for future use.

“Ukraine has become a testing ground for state-of-the-art weapons and information systems, and new ways to use them, that Western political officials and military commanders predict could shape warfare for generations to come,” write’s NYT’s Lara Jakes.

Jakes writes that “new advances in technology and training in Ukraine are being closely monitored for the ways they are changing the face of the fight.” These new technological advancements include an information system known as Delta, as well as “remote-controlled boats, anti-drone weapons known as SkyWipers and an updated version of an air-defense system built in Germany that the German military itself has yet to use.”

A former Lithuanian president is quoted as saying, “We’re learning in Ukraine how to fight, and we’re learning how to use our NATO equipment,” adding, “It is shameful for me because Ukrainians are paying with their lives for these exercises for us.”

Yeah, no shit.

At some point The New York Times article was re-titled from “Western Allies Look to Ukraine as a Testing Ground for Weapons” to the slightly less obvious “For Western Weapons, the Ukraine War Is a Beta Test.”

News that the west is using Ukraine to test weapons systems for future wars aligns with recent comments by the commander of the US nuclear arsenal that the proxy war is a test run for a much bigger conflict that’s on its way.

“This Ukraine crisis that we’re in right now, this is just the warmup,” said US STRATCOM head Charles Richard at a naval conference earlier this month. “The big one is coming. And it isn’t going to be very long before we’re going to get tested in ways that we haven’t been tested [in] a long time.”

So in addition to being used to advance longstanding US geostrategic objectives, apparently this war is also being used to sharpen the imperial war machine’s claws for a looming hot war with China and/or Russia. The US would certainly have an advantage in military test runs over the years in such a conflict.

As an aside, it’s probably worth noting that all the testing of new western weapons technology would likely explain reports from Ukrainian astronomers that the skies over Kyiv have been “swarming with unidentified flying objects (UFOs).” The aforementioned New York Times article quotes Ukrainian vice prime minister Mykhailo Fedorov as saying that the weapons testing he’s seen has convinced him that “the wars of the future will be about maximum drones and minimal humans.”

One of the many reasons the US and its complex network of allies, partners and assets are always fighting so many wars is because new weapons technology needs to be tested in battle before it can be deemed effective. What this means in practice is using human bodies as test subjects, the way a scientist uses laboratory rats or guinea pigs.

The US-centralized empire pretends to care about Ukrainian lives, but in reality it only cares about them to the extent that a researcher cares about his lab rats. And for exactly the same reason.

What could be more sinister than that? Well, the agendas that they are running those tests in preparation for, I suppose.

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November 18, 2022 Posted by | secrets,lies and civil liberties, USA | 3 Comments

Strange Rolls Royce plan for Large complex of Large Small Nuclear Reactors for Bradwell

Rolls Royce announced on 9 November that it is eying up Bradwell as a potential site for the deployment of four to six so-called (and currently non-existent) Small Nuclear Reactors (SMRs).

Professor Andy Blowers, the Chair of the Blackwater Against New Nuclear Group (BANNG), commented:
‘This proposal, if it ever came about, would place up to six nuclear reactors on the Bradwell site. And they are hardly ‘small’ since each reactor would be close to the size of the old Bradwell A station. Together
these reactors would comprise a nuclear complex larger than the massive, proposed Bradwell B currently under consideration for development by the Chinese company, CGN.

‘It is hard to state how utterly inappropriate such a development, which would include long-term storage of highly radioactive nuclear wastes, would be on the low- lying Bradwell site, threatened by the impacts of Climate Change and Sea Level Rise.

BANNG finds it extremely odd that Rolls Royce is proposing the Bradwell site for SMRs. Only two days
before the announcement BANNG, at a meeting of the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) NGO Nuclear Forum, asked if CGN had withdrawn from the Bradwell B project. BANNG was told that there was no change to the proposals for Bradwell B but that further discussion was not
possible because of ‘commercial confidentiality’.

The Bradwell site is owned by the French company, EDF, which is also a minor partner in the
Bradwell B project. Rolls Royce agree that its proposal ‘requires agreement with CGN and EDF energy’.

Perhaps the Rolls Royce announcementunravels the mystery as to why CGN has not quit its operations at Bradwell altogether, claiming they are paused indefinitely. Could this be paving the way for Rolls Royce and also explain why BEIS invoked commercial confidentiality?

 Blackwater Against New Nuclear Group 17th Nov 2022

https://www.banng.info/category/news/

November 18, 2022 Posted by | Small Modular Nuclear Reactors, UK | Leave a comment

NATO’s hair trigger: The Polish missile incident was a close brush with nuclear annihilation

https://www.rt.com/news/566710-polish-missile-incident-nato/ Scott Ritter. 18 Nov 22The fervor with which Poland and others sought to drag NATO into a war with Russia should ring alarm bells for everyone

The world dodged a bullet this week, with some NATO members trying, but failing, to trigger Article 4 as a means of confronting Russia in Ukraine. We may not be so lucky next time.

The recent scandal surrounding what most of the world now agrees was an errant Ukrainian surface-to-air missile landing on Polish soil, killing two Polish citizens in the process, has exposed an ugly reality about the eastern reaches of NATO today:

Despite the more reserved stance of the old NATO establishment (the US, UK, France, and Germany), the new upstarts in eastern Europe seem hell-bent on finding a mechanism that will justify NATO intervention in Ukraine.

This predilection for nuclear annihilation (no one should have any misgivings that a NATO-Russia conflict would end any other way) should send alarm bells ringing in the halls of power throughout NATO and the rest of the world, because left to their own devices, the Russophobic officials that dominate the governments of Poland and the three Baltic republics act like lemmings, running toward the Ukrainian cliff, oblivious to their fate as they chase the fantasy of NATO defeating Russia on a European battlefield.

The rush to judgment that accompanied the arrival of the Ukrainian surface-to-air missile on Polish soil serves as a stark reminder about how the supposedly defensive characteristics of the NATO Charter can be used to promote, rather than deter, conflict. 

Let there be no doubt – NATO was aware that the missile that impacted near the village of Przewodów in Poland, killing two Polish citizens, was a Ukrainian surface-to-air missile the moment it was launched.

 The airspace over Ukraine is one of the most highly-monitored locations in the world. Without revealing sources and methods, suffice it to say there isn’t anything that happens over Ukraine that isn’t registered in real time on a NATO display in headquarters throughout Europe – including Poland.

And yet … Poland saw fit to summon the Russian ambassador and lodge a protest.

Moreover, Poland declared that it would increase its military readiness while contemplating the activation of Article 4 of the NATO Treaty, a mechanism which allows the alliance to discuss security threats to member states with an eye on possibly using NATO military force to rectify the situation. Article 4 is behind every combat deployment of NATO since its inception, from Serbia, to Libya, to Afghanistan. 

On cue, Lithuanian President Gitanas Nausėda, whose country borders Poland, tweeted that “every inch of NATO territory must be defended!”

Czech Prime Minister Petr Fiala likewise turned to Twitter to exclaim: “If Poland confirms that the missiles also hit its territory, this will be a further escalation by Russia. We stand firmly behind our EU and NATO ally.”

For its part, Estonia called the news “most concerning,” with its foreign minister declaring via Twitter, “We are consulting closely with Poland and other allies. Estonia is ready to defend every inch of NATO territory.” 

While all parties concurred that there was no basis for triggering Article 5 of NATO (i.e., the collective security clause), Article 4 was very much in play. Poland was adamant: The missile “attack” against Poland was clearly a crime, one that could not go unpunished. As such, under Article 4, Poland would be pushing “for NATO members and Poland to agree on the provision of additional anti-aircraft defense, including in part of the territory of Ukraine.”

And there you have it: “Including in part of the territory of Ukraine.”

Enter Germany, stage left: “As an immediate reaction to the incident in Poland, we will offer to strengthen air policing with combat air patrols over its airspace with German Eurofighters,” a German Defense Ministry spokesperson declared. 

Cue NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, who convened an emergency meeting of NATO ambassadors in Brussels to discuss the Polish incident. According to the Finnish foreign minister (Finland, although not a NATO member, was invited to the meeting), “Closing the airspace [above Ukraine] will definitely be discussed. Various options of how we can protect Ukraine are on the table.”

While Germany reportedly rejected the establishment of a no-fly zone over Ukraine, noting that such an action would pose a threat of direct confrontation between Russia and NATO, one is left pondering how such a discussion came to be in the first place: Ukraine fired a surface-to-air missile, which was tracked by NATO as it impacted on Polish soil. And, as a result, NATO members end up discussing the possibility of invoking Article 4 of the NATO Charter, seeking to extend NATO air defense into Ukrainian air space in concert with the establishment of a no-fly zone enforced by NATO aircraft.

“Even if it was a blue on blue [incident] with a Ukrainian rocket that landed in Poland, I think there is still enough ground for Poland to invoke Article 4,” a former director of policy planning for NATO, Fabrice Pothier, declared.

Just to clarify what Mr. Pothier is saying: Because Ukraine fired a surface-to-air missile that ended up landing on Polish soil, NATO is justified in invoking Article 4, setting the stage for a possible NATO-Russia conflict in Ukraine which could lead to global nuclear annihilation.

If there was ever any doubt about the threat NATO posed to the entire world, there is no more.

That this is being promulgated on behalf of a Ukrainian leader who, despite universal consensus that the missile which hit Poland was Ukrainian, denies this possibility, all the while blaming Russia in the hopes that NATO will intervene, only adds to the insanity of this crisis.

While it appears that the world has dodged the potential death sentence triggered by the NATO Article 4 this time, the hair-trigger aspect of NATO’s Pavlovian response mechanism when it comes to seeking causal justification for military intervention in Ukraine should have everyone on high alert.

November 18, 2022 Posted by | Ukraine, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Musk’s Money Is Playing Old Games With New Media

Cartoon from Springfield News-Sun

For all of Twitter’s problems—mean-spirited fights, harassment, bots, extremist content—the social media network has been a liberating way for writers, activists and academics to build platforms and followings free from corporate media filters. Under Musk, Twitter could become such a cesspool of hate speech (Scientific American/Nature11/8/22) and impersonators (CNN11/9/22) that it becomes unusable, or the stress caused by layoffs and the revenue losses could bring down the whole thing.

what Musk is doing to social media has long been done by monied interests to traditional media—much to the poverty of our journalistic culture.

FAIR, 18 Nov 22, Elon Musk’s takeover of Twitter has been difficult to satirize. The company is losing revenue (Reuters11/7/22), thanks in large part to the $1 billion in additional debt payments Musk has saddled it with. His idea to sell blue-check verifications for $8 was widely ridiculed (Variety11/2/22)—predictably resulting in a flood of fake posts from “verified” accounts—and mass layoffs have put the website’s infrastructure in jeopardy (MIT Technology Review11/8/22). A lockdown of the company offices had many wondering if Twitter would survive the pre-Thanksgiving weekend (Daily Beast11/17/22).

Monied parties

This would be a loss for a lot of users, but such a situation is hardly new in US media. There’s a long history of monied parties taking over media and watering them down, even breaking them up for parts. It’s just that this time it involves the world’s richest man and social media.

Look at American radio……………………… its news and talk stations are home to right-wing commentators—including, formerly, the late Rush Limbaugh (AP3/27/12). These owners’ biases have had enormous political implications due to the consolidation of the radio market……………………….

It’s an old story in newspaperland as well………………………………………

Advancing mogul politics

And consider for a minute that Musk, the CEO of Tesla, is the world’s richest person, while No. 2 is Jeff Bezos of Amazon, who also owns the Washington Post. Like Musk, Bezos is another rich, corporate boss who wants to influence the public discussion through control of a major media outlet. …………………………….

Moguls use their money to advance their politics, both through campaign contributions and through media acquisitions. In addition to Musk’s recent endorsement of Republican candidates, his interest in conservatism grew after the presidential election of Donald Trump. “Starting in 2017, Musk’s donations began to skew much more heavily toward Republicans than Democrats, spending nearly seven times more on GOP campaigns,” Business Insider (6/15/22) reported, adding that Musk “accepted positions on two of Trump’s White House councils.” He cheered on a coup in Bolivia (Jalopnik10/19/20) and is outspokenly hostile to unions (NPR3/3/22).

Musk’s acquisition of Twitter seems like a new chapter in history, but his choice to either skew Twitter to be friendly to the right (as his right-wing cheerleaders believe he is doing) or to run the network into the ground is only the latest episode of monied interests pillaging our communications infrastructure for financial or ideological gain. Musk’s Twitter takeover seems new, because it impacts new media rather than the old. But what Musk is doing to social media has long been done by monied interests to traditional media—much to the poverty of our journalistic culture.

For the right-wing press, Musk—who backed the Republicans in the recent midterm elections (Reuters11/7/22)—is a social media savior who is appalled by content moderation, factchecking and the banning of certain extremist content. Fox News (11/16/22) lauded him for reducing spending at Twitter, and others say he’s a free-speech champion trying to end Big Tech censorship (Deseret News11/1/22). The New York Post (11/11/22) said that the advertiser boycotts of Musk’s Twitter were signs of a liberal conspiracy to enforce wokeness online, while Matt Taibbi (Substack11/15/22)—who once wrote about the greed of big banks for Rolling Stone—attacked critics of the anti-union billionaire media baron for conducting a pro-conformity witch hunt.

For all of Twitter’s problems—mean-spirited fights, harassment, bots, extremist content—the social media network has been a liberating way for writers, activists and academics to build platforms and followings free from corporate media filters. Under Musk, Twitter could become such a cesspool of hate speech (Scientific American/Nature11/8/22) and impersonators (CNN11/9/22) that it becomes unusable, or the stress caused by layoffs and the revenue losses could bring down the whole thing.  https://fair.org/home/musks-money-is-playing-old-games-with-new-media/

November 18, 2022 Posted by | 2 WORLD, media | Leave a comment

NATO Diplomat HITS BACK At Zelensky After He INSISTS Ukraine Did Not Send Deadly Missile: Report

November 18, 2022 Posted by | reprocessing, Ukraine | Leave a comment

U.S. rejects funding to re-open Michigan nuclear plant -Holtec

By Timothy Gardner, WASHINGTON, Nov 18 (Reuters) – The U.S. Department of Energy rejected Holtec International’s application for funding to reopen the Palisades nuclear power plant in Michigan, a Holtec spokesperson said on Friday.

Holtec bought the 805 megawatt Palisades plant in May to decommission the facility, which had struggled to compete with natural gas-fired plants and renewable energy. It was looking to reopen it with funding from the initial phase of the Energy Department’s $6 billion Civil Nuclear Credit program.

…………….

The DOE did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Nuclear power produces toxic waste, currently held at 28 plants across the country.

ClearView Energy Partners, a nonpartisan research group, said in September that Palisades’ closure was “likely to be permanent.” Palisades was out of nuclear fuel, faced a control rod drive seal issue that needed to be fixed and likely needed a new company to operate it, as well as a buyer for the power it generates, ClearView said at the time.

The CNC program, launched by the DOE this year, is intended for plants in states with competitive electricity markets and funded by the infrastructure bill that passed last year……………..

In the first phase of the CNC program, the DOE prioritized plants that had already shut or announced intentions to close. Power utility PG&E Corp (PCG.N) was the only other company to apply in the first phase, for its Diablo Canyon plant in California, slated to fully close by 2025. PG&E did not immediately respond to a request for comment about the status of its application. https://www.reuters.com/business/energy/us-rejects-funding-re-open-michigan-nuclear-plant-holtec-2022-11-18

November 18, 2022 Posted by | politics, USA | Leave a comment

USA using COP27 to co-opt Europe , especially Ukraine, into the small nuclear reactor gamble

U.S. announces new European SMR initiatives at COP27 in Egypt

“……………………………….. On November 12, the U.S. announced two global Small Modular Reactor (SMR) initiatives: (1) a Ukraine clean fuels from SMRs pilot project and (2) a new initiative to accelerate the European transition of coal-fired plants to SMRs. 

………. additional information on these two initiatives is still underway (the White House mentioned both initiatives in its Overview of COP27)

The U.S. Special Presidential Envoy for Climate, John Kerry, and Ukraine Minister of Energy German Galushchenko introduced a “Ukraine Clean Fuels from SMRs Pilot” project…………………………

  • The pilot project, which will run for 2-3 years, also relies on the work of a public-private consortium on scientific and practical developments for SMRs.
  • Participating partners from the U.S. include Argonne National Laboratory, Clark Seed, FuelCell Energy, NuScale and Starfire Energy. On the Ukraine side, participants include nuclear operator Energoatom, the National Security and Defense Council, and the State Scientific and Technical Center for Nuclear and Radiation Safety.

Special Envoy Kerry introduced another a new initiative, called Project Phoenix, to accelerate the European transition of coal-fired plants to SMRs,……………

According to the White House Fact Sheet Project Phoenix will provide direct U.S. support for the coal-to-SMR feasibility studies and related activities that support energy security goals for countries in Central and Eastern Europe.

November 18, 2022 Posted by | Small Modular Nuclear Reactors, Ukraine | Leave a comment

Oak Ridge Environmental Peace Alliance – a leader for action on the Treaty for the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons

Enviro Close-Up #671 Oak Ridge Environmental Peace Alliance 19 Nov 22, This Enviro Close-Up focuses on the Oak Ridge Environmental Peace Alliance (OREPA)—especially it being a leader in getting action on the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons.

This visionary pact was passed at the UN in 1977. In the words of the UN, the treaty is “a legally binding instrument to prohibit nuclear weapons, leading towards their total elimination.” It’s a nuclear counterpart to the treaties enacted in the 1920s that outlawed chemical weapons in the wake of their horrific use during World War I.

It could put the nuclear genie back in the bottle. But nations with nuclear weapons—including the U.S., Russia and China—have refused to ratify it. Moreover, communications media have almost totally not been mentioning the treaty’s existence in the huge number of reports on the threats by Russian President Putin to use nuclear weapons since his invasion of Ukraine.

OREPA is active in the Nuclear Ban Treaty Collaborative which is calling for media to “pay attention” to the treaty, explains OREPA’s coordinator, Ralph Hutchison. Cody Dishner, community organizer for OREPA, says many people are now “for the first time in their lives” faced with “nuclear annihilation.”

The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists has moved forward its “Doomsday Clock” to 100 seconds to midnight, the closest it has been since set up in 1947. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres says “we must eliminate nuclear weapons before they eliminate us.” OREPA is calling for “educating, mobilizing, organizing” for a world free of nuclear weapons.

November 18, 2022 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Sizewell C nuclear plant in Suffolk to go ahead, Chancellor Jeremy Hunt confirms

A spokesman for the group Stop Sizewell C said: “If the chancellor is
looking for cheap, reliable, energy independence, he is backing the wrong
project, as Sizewell C’s ultimate cost and technical reliability are very
uncertain and building it is reliant on French state-owned EDF.


“Greenlighting Sizewell C also loads more tax onto struggling households,
who would be forced to pay a nuclear levy on bills for a decade before they
could light a single lightbulb. “Despite the chancellor’s statement,
Sizewell C still needs financing, and with at least a year before it’s
decided whether it will finally go ahead, we’ll keep fighting this huge
black hole for taxpayers’ money, when there are cheaper, quicker ways to
get to net zero.”

 ITV 17th Nov 2022

https://www.itv.com/news/anglia/2022-11-17/sizewell-c-nuclear-plant-to-go-ahead-chancellor-confirms

 Nuclear energy is unsafe, unreliable and leaves a long and toxic legacy,
according to the Scottish Greens. This comes as the Chancellor, Jeremy
Hunt, has confirmed plans for the Sizewell C nuclear plant.

 Scottish Greens 17th Nov 2022

https://greens.scot/news/nuclear-is-unsafe-unreliable-and-will-leave-long-and-toxic-legacy

November 18, 2022 Posted by | politics, UK | Leave a comment

PERVERSE PRIORITIES UK : CUT PUBLIC SPENDING, KEEP NUCLEAR ARMS AND WARPLANES

Chancellor Jeremy Hunt is considering billions worth of cuts in public spending while the Ministry of Defence, with Labour’s support, plans to spend vast sums on just two hugely expensive military projects.

RICHARD NORTON-TAYLOR Declassified UK, 14 NOVEMBER 2022,

We are in the midst of an extraordinary, indeed perverse, new round of austerity cuts.

The chancellor, Jeremy Hunt, is reported to be looking for £35 billion across government in cuts. While vital services will continue to be deprived of urgently-needed resources, the government seems set to give the military a budget rise in cash terms from £47.9bn this year to £48bn in 2023 and £48.6bn in 2024.

Liz Truss, backed by defence secretary Ben Wallace, wanted to award the armed forces even more – an increase close to £200bn by 2030, the biggest rise in the military budget since the start of the Cold War. By then UK military spending would have doubled to £100bn a year.

Rishi Sunak and Hunt have realised that such increases would be so unjustified and extravagant that they are reportedly ditching promises in the Conservatives 2019 manifesto and will actually cut the defence budget in real terms, that is with inflation taken into account.

However, the government’s spending on the military means that it will still be wasting vast resources on weapons systems that are unuseable in any foreseeable conflict. 

Its planned public spending cuts are a small percentage of the amount the Ministry of Defence will be spending, with Labour’s enthusiastic support, on just two hugely expensive projects – the renewal of the Trident nuclear weapons arsenal and a fleet of 48 American F35B fighter jets for the navy’s two large aircraft carriers.

‘Persistent engagement overseas’ 

The government had set out Britain’s role and military posture in an ‘Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development, and Foreign Policy’ and a report called ‘Defence in a Competitive Age’.

The documents are full of platitudes, vague promises and hollow claims. The review says Britain will be a “force for good”, “defending human rights”, avoiding any reference to Britain’s biggest market for arms sales – the Gulf states that are among the world’s worst abusers of human rights.

The refusal of the government to account to parliament about arms exports was sharply criticised by a cross-party Commons committee.

The defence report states that Britain will conduct “persistent engagement overseas”, including “further investment in Oman” demonstrating Britain’s “long-term commitment to the Gulf’s stability and prosperity, in addition to our presence in the British Indian Ocean Territory”. 

This is an unstated reference to the US bomber base on Diego Garcia on the Chagos archipelago whose entire indigenous population was expelled by Britain.

The report refers to Britain’s “long standing relationships with Saudi Arabia…in support of shared security and prosperity objectives”. Saudi Arabia recently demonstrated its own priorities by siding with Vladimir Putin at the expense of consumers in the west by capping oil production.

‘Soft power superpower’

Ironically, the “integrated review” emphasises Britain’s potential role as a “soft power superpower” referring to the BBC and development aid, both of which are the victims of government cuts. 

It emphasises the importance of the need to defend British interests against cyber attacks and to invest in unmanned drones. Yet the potential threat posed by cyber warfare and the opportunities presented by unmanned drones were ignored for many years by the Ministry of Defence.

The defence paper promises more investment in “autonomous platforms including swarming drones”, and says “Special Forces are at the heart of our approach to modernisation”. …………………………………..

Wasted billions

The lack of effective scrutiny of the armed forces and their expenditure has allowed the Ministry of Defence to waste tens of billions of pounds of public money on extravagant weapons systems irrelevant to modern conflict………………………………..

The figures below do not take into account the hidden costs of a skilled workforce diverted from military projects to more sustainable and useful products that benefit civil society. Nor do they take into account direct government support for arms exports and exporters – or bribery.

The MOD’s £300bn wasteful spending              

Trident renewal£200bn
*Cost of delays/overruns in new projects, including frigates, Eurofighter/Typhoon aircraft, Bowman radios, A400M military transport aircraft£18+bn
F-35s for aircraft carriers£18.8bn
Aircraft carriers£6.2bn
*Nimrod aircraft (subsequently destroyed)£4bn
*Rental costs of privatised housing previously owned by MOD£4bn
*Ajax armoured vehicleat least £3.5bn 
Military operations in Afghanistan and Iraq£48.5bn

(* Source: National Audit Office)  https://declassifieduk.org/perverse-priorities-cut-public-spending-keep-nuclear-arms-and-warplanes/

November 18, 2022 Posted by | politics, UK | Leave a comment

Pink Floyd legend Roger Waters blames US profiteers for Ukraine conflict

 https://www.rt.com/news/566577-roger-water-ukraine-profit/ 15 Nov 22

They let it happen because it’s good for business, according to Roger Waters

British rock star Roger Waters has hit out against the US for profiting off of the ongoing military conflict between Russia and Ukraine, which he says Washington allowed to happen because it was beneficial to American interests.

Discussing US foreign policy on the Bad Faith podcast on YouTube, the Pink Floyd co-founder stated that the conflict in Ukraine was “the best thing to happen to them in the last 10 years,” because it was “really good for business.”

“Part of their business is making money from the war through making weapons and selling them to the people and taking the profits from it,” Waters explained, adding that this money never goes to ordinary people. “It’s not you or me, not ordinary people who invest in the war industry. It’s people with tons of cash, and they get very well paid when there’s war.”

Another benefit of the war for the political establishment, according to Waters, is that it allows it to convince people who struggle to make ends meet and end up homeless that their woes are the fault of the Russians and Putin, who is compared to Hitler and accused of being responsible for “destroying everyone’s lives.”

Roger says he has now been banned from performing in Poland for openly criticizing the West’s military meddling and calling for peace between Russia and Ukraine.


READ MORE: Rock legend says he’s on Ukrainian ‘kill list’

Previously, the musician had written letters personally addressed to presidents Vladimir Putin, Zelensky and Joe Biden, calling for diplomatic talks to end the conflict, stating it is “the worst possible thing that can be happening,” due to the potential of an all-out nuclear war.

November 18, 2022 Posted by | Ukraine, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Blowback: Italian police bust Azov-tied Nazi cell planning terror attacks

Nazism has found a safe space in the Ukrainian armed forces

a 2022 Department of Homeland Security document acknowledged that “Ukrainian nationalist groups including the Azov Movement are actively recruiting racially or ethnically motivated violent extremist white supremacists to join various neo-Nazi volunteer battalions in the war against Russia”

ALEXANDER RUBINSTEIN·NOVEMBER 15, 2022,

The arrest of Italian neo-Nazis affiliated with the Ukrainian Azov Battalion highlights the terrifying potential for blowback from the Ukraine proxy war

Italian police announced a series of raids against the neo-Nazi Order of Hagal organization. Accused of stockpiling weapons and planning terror attacks, the group has established operational ties to the Ukrainian Azov Battalion.

Five members of an Italian neo-Nazi organization known as the “Order of Hagal” were arrested on November 15th while an additional member remains wanted by authorities. He happened to be in Ukraine, fighting Russian forces alongside the Azov Battalion, which has been formally integrated into the Ukrainian military. 

The “Hagal” members are accused of plotting terrorist attacks on civilian and police targets. A sixth member of the Hagal group, now considered a fugitive, is in Ukraine and embedded with the Azov Battalion, a neo-Nazi paramilitary group that has been incorporated into the Ukrainian National Guard. 

Members of the Order of Hagal reportedly maintained “direct and frequent” contacts over Telegram with not just the Azov Battalion, but also the neo-Nazi Ukrainian military formations Right Sector and Centuria, “probably in the view of possible recruitment into the ranks of these fighting groups,” according to Italian media.

The police investigation was launched in 2019 and has included extensive computer searches and wiretapping; tactics which have revealed members of the group’s intent on carrying out violent acts in Italy. ……………………………

Footage of the arrests broadcast by the news channel Sky Tg24 shows long knives, a Nordic-style axe, a bat emblazoned with the words “Leader Mussolini,” a swastika flag, a gas mask, an Azov Battalion t-shirt and “Valhalla Express,” a memoir by an Azov fighter.

But Ukraine is not the only country to have been visited by members of the Order of Hagal; “some members” also traveled to Israel to train in Krav Maga and the use of long and short weapons,” according to police officials. In fact, they were even given diplomas for completing the training…………………………….

While Nazism has found a safe space in the Ukrainian armed forces, the arrests and warrants against the members of the Order of Hagal that planned terror attacks suggests the potential for blowback from NATO’s Ukraine proxy war, as battle-hardened, ideologically extreme veterans encouraged by Western governments and supported with US and EU aid return home to cities across Europe.

“The high availability of weapons during the current conflict will result in the proliferation in illicit arms in the post-conflict phase,” Interpol Secretary General Juergen Stock has warned

As The Grayzone has reported, a 2022 Department of Homeland Security document acknowledged that “Ukrainian nationalist groups including the Azov Movement are actively recruiting racially or ethnically motivated violent extremist white supremacists to join various neo-Nazi volunteer battalions in the war against Russia” but noted a key intelligence gap: “What kind of training are foreign fighters receiving in Ukraine that they could possibly proliferate in US based militia and white nationalist groups?” https://thegrayzone.com/2022/11/15/blowback-italian-azov-tied-nazi-terror/

November 18, 2022 Posted by | Italy, secrets,lies and civil liberties | Leave a comment

Nuclear Free Local Authorities welcome energy efficiency plans, but deplore costly Sizewell C nuclear build at the public’s expense

Whilst the Nuclear Free Local Authorities welcome the Chancellor’s
commitment to invest billions more in home energy-efficiency, albeit too
slowly, his backing for Sizewell C is a blow.

In today’s Autumn
Statement, Chancellor Jeremy Hunt announced a further £6 billion for home
insulation from 2025 and has given the green light to the go ahead at
Sizewell C saying that contracts will be signed with partner French state
owned operator EDF Energy ‘in weeks’.

The NFLA has previously, and
severally, called on Government ministers, from successive Prime Ministers
on down, to provide serious investment for an emergency programme to
retrofit insulation to Britain’s cold and damp homes to improve comfort
whilst lowering bills for customers and the carbon footprint of the
nation’s housing stock.

Most unwelcome is the Chancellor’s backing for
Sizewell C. Jeremy Hunt has described the costly project as ‘Britain’s
first state backed nuclear power station for 30 years’, but much of the
backing will be at the expense of Britain’s already hard-pressed
electricity customers.

Hinkley Point C in Somerset, currently being built,
is already almost a decade late and way over budget, and her sister,
Sizewell C, will most likely cost upwards of £30 billion and be subject to
significant delays with customers expected to pick up the tag through the
imposition of an additional ‘nuclear tax’ on their bills to pay for it.
The NFLA wrote recently to the Chancellor urging him to scrap the scheme
and divert the money saved into renewables.

 NFLA 17th Nov 2022

November 18, 2022 Posted by | politics, UK | Leave a comment

Shutdown of UKraine’s Khmelnytskyy Nuclear Power Plant due to military attacks in the region

 Ukraine’s Khmelnytskyy Nuclear Power Plant (KhNPP) lost all access to the
electricity grid yesterday due to military attacks in the country, forcing
it to temporarily rely on diesel generators for back-up power, Director
General Rafael Mariano Grossi of the International Atomic Energy Agency
(IAEA) said today, citing information he had received from Ukrainian
authorities.

The KhNPP’s grid connection was completely lost at 18:35
local time on 15 November, after the site’s four operating power lines
were progressively lost over a two-and-a-half-hour period because of
missile attacks on the country’s energy infrastructure, Ukraine told the
IAEA. During this period, the plant’s two reactors were shut down,
halting their delivery of electricity to households, factories and others.

 IAEA 16th Nov 2022

https://www.iaea.org/newscenter/pressreleases/update-127-iaea-director-general-statement-on-situation-in-ukraine

November 18, 2022 Posted by | incidents | Leave a comment

Moscow accuses Ukrainian soldiers of killing POWs (DISTURBING IMAGES)

https://www.rt.com/russia/566776-kiev-soldiers-kill-russian-captives/ 18 Nov 22, A video has surfaced on social media showing what appear to be Kiev’s troops alongside executed Russian servicemen.

THIS ARTICLE CONTAINS DISTURBING IMAGES

The Russian Defense Ministry has accused Ukrainian forces of committing a war crime after a video surfaced on social media, on Friday, which appears to show captured Russian servicemen first alive and subsequently dead.

The footage depicts soldiers dressed in Russian uniforms first surrendering to troops in uniforms bearing Ukrainian insignia before being shown lying on the ground, presumably dead.

The ministry described the video as evidence of “the deliberate and methodical murder” of over ten Russian servicemen at the hands of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, who “shot them straight in their heads.” Such actions prove the “barbaric nature” of the government in Kiev led by President Vladimir Zelensky, as well as “all those, who defend and support it,” the statement added. 

The video also purports to show one of the supposed Russian soldiers opening fire on the Ukrainians as his fellow servicemen already lie on the ground with their hands behind their heads. At least one of Kiev’s fighters was allegedly injured in the incident, according to the footage. It is unclear how this particular episode was linked to what happened to the Russians next.

The Russian Presidential Human Rights Council reacted to the alleged incident by calling for an international probe into what its head, Valery Fadeev, described as a “demonstrative and audacious crime.

This is a violation of all possible conventions banning cruel treatment of captives, as well as of international law and moral norms,” Fadeev said in a statement, adding that “we will demand a reaction from the international community, as well as an investigation.” According to Fadeev, the UN Human Rights Office is already studying evidence of extrajudicial killings near the Ukrainian town of Kupyansk, as well as the shelling of a civilian river crossing in the city of Kherson.

READ MORE: Russia investigates alleged footage of Ukrainian troops torturing POWs

Moscow will send the information on the alleged execution of Russian captives to the UN Human Rights Office, the Council of Europe, as well as Amnesty International, and the International Committee of the Red Cross, Fadeev added.

This is not the first high-profile incident supposedly involving Ukrainian troops and Russian prisoners-of-war. In late March, footage surfaced purportedly showing Ukrainian servicemen shooting Russians, under their care, in the legs at point-blank range.

November 18, 2022 Posted by | civil liberties, Ukraine | Leave a comment