August 29, 2017

Netanyahu Says Israel Won't Retreat on Jewish Settlements: 'We Are Here to Stay Forever;' 'This Is Our Land'

On November 2, 2015 Shimon Peres stopped short of directly criticizing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. But he also made no secret that the values he and the assassinated Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin inherited from Israel's founding father, David Ben-Gurion, were in jeopardy. "Better to have a Jewish state on part of the land than have the whole land without the Jewish state," he said. "Israel should implement the two-state solution for her own sake because if we should lose our majority, and today we are almost equal, we cannot remain a Jewish state or a democratic state. "That's the main issue, and to my regret they (the government) do the opposite."  

August 28, 2017

(Los Angeles Times) - Days after meeting a White House delegation to discuss restarting peace negotiations with the Palestinians, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu forcefully spoke out against a principal tenet of any likely agreement: the scaling back of Jewish settlements.

At an event celebrating 50 years of Israeli settlements in the northern West Bank, Netanyahu pledged Monday that his government will never evacuate a single settlement.

Addressing a large crowd, Netanyahu declared: “We are here to stay forever. There will be no more uprooting of settlements in the land of Israel. This is the inheritance of our ancestors. This is our land.”

Jewish settlements in the West Bank, which are considered illegal by much of the international community, have been at the crux of peace talks for years. Successive U.S. presidents have considered the settlements an obstacle to peace and have called for, at the least, a stop to their expansion. Although President Trump has been less critical than his predecessors, even he has said that further construction would be unhelpful.

In his remarks, Netanyahu underscored the risk Israel would face if it withdrew from the West Bank — a central demand of the Palestinians, for whom the area represents a future independent state.

“Samaria is a strategic asset for the state of Israel,” the prime minister said, using the biblical name for the northern West Bank. “It is the key to our future. Because from these high hills, the heights of Mt. Hatzor, we can see the entire country, from one side to the other.”

The audience cheered.

“There will be no more uprooting of settlements in the land of Israel. It has been proven that it does not help peace,” he said. “We've uprooted settlements. What did we get? We received missiles. It will not happen again.”

Netanyahu appeared to be referring to Israel’s 2005 disengagement from the Gaza Strip, and the dismantling of settlements there. The next year, the Islamist group Hamas won the Palestinian legislative elections, eventually taking control of Gaza.

The Israeli government officially supports a two-state solution to its conflict with the Palestinians, which would entail relinquishing control of much of the West Bank for a Palestinian state. But many of Netanyahu’s right-wing Cabinet members have steered away from that commitment, and when addressing Israelis, the prime minister occasionally distances himself.

In 2014, he told a group of Israeli journalists covering his meetings with then-U.S. Secretary of State John F. Kerry in Davos, Switzerland, that “I have no intention of evacuating any settlement or uprooting any Israeli.”

Netanyahu’s comments Monday came late in the evening, and there was no immediate response from Palestinian officials.

August 27, 2017

EPA Will No Longer Sponsor the Annual Climate Leadership Awards

August 26, 2017

(Engadget via Reuters) - It's no secret that Scott Pruitt is a climate change skeptic, and the Environmental Protection Agency has been undoing Obama-era policies ever since he took office. The agency's latest move follows that trend: the EPA has announced that it's no longer sponsoring the 2018 Climate Leadership Awards program, which recognizes companies that take steps to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions and publicly report their progress. As a result, the awards program itself and the Climate Leadership Conference that usually goes with it have both been canceled for next year.

EPA spokesperson Jahan Wilcox apologized but didn't explain why the EPA withdrew its support. As he told Reuters in an email "It shouldn't be a surprise to anyone that [the EPA doesn't] plan to fund an awards ceremony on climate change." To start with, the administration's proposed budget for 2018 will see its funding cut by 31 percent, which will specifically affect its climate change and pollution initiatives. Even without the budget cut, though, it's hard to imagine the EPA supporting a climate change award in its current state.

Earlier this year, the agency pulled down its climate science pages to reflect the views of the White House. The president also signed an executive order rolling back climate policies approved by the previous administration. And let's not forget that the United States withdrew from the Paris Accord, an agreement between 142 countries to make an effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

While the awards program for 2018 was canceled, the EPA's former co-sponsors, non-government organizations C2ES and the Climate Registry, intend to continue the tradition. They're now looking for a new co-sponsor willing to fund and host the program in the future.

August 26, 2017

North Korea Tests Short-range Missiles as South Korea, U.S. Conduct Drills

Apartments in Pyongyang

"I have traveled extensively in North Korea. I go to North Korea annually to study about life for average people. In the DPRK there are classes of people who live quite different lives. For most all, but the elites, life is hard. Pyongyang is atypical of the country as a whole. The apartments are better, transportation is better, and access to consumer goods is much better. Electricity and running water can be a problem in the capital but, overall, life is not bad. Water is pumped for an hour or so in the morning and held in the apartment bathtub. Electricity can go out several times per day, and prolonged outages can make refrigeration an issue. Access to affordable recreation is better, and access to hard currency is much better, in Pyongyang. Office workers enjoy a moderate standard of living and can be rewarded with a television or rice cooker. Remember -- North Korea is on a 48-hour work week plus additional 'volunteer labor.' Other cities begin to decline from there. In Nampo I have seen people hauling water up to apartments from a communal well, and in Pyongsong I watched people pump water up via hoses outside to their apartments. Elevators in older buildings no longer work. Chongjin, Kaesong, and parts of Hamhung are run down with little or no maintenance. Cardboard can be seen in windows. For electricity there is a problem as well. With shortages of coal to heat and cook your food, chronic food shortages, long distances to walk, labor, the sheer number of hours spent on food preservation -- everything just to survive leads to a hard life. Those in the rural homes, as well as neighbors and extended families, generally have better food security because of their own gardens and livestock. It was those in the towns and cities that had problems during the famine. We take for granted many modern conveniences that are unknown in the DPRK. Think of a cash economy, with doing virtually everything manually. That is the reality for most North Koreans." - Raymond K. Cunningham, Jr., October 14, 2014

August 25, 2017

(Reuters) - North Korea fired several short-range missiles into the sea off its east coast early on Saturday, South Korea and the U.S. military said, as the two allies conducted annual joint military drills that the North denounces as preparation for war.

The U.S. military’s Pacific Command said it had detected three short-range ballistic missiles, fired over a 20 minute period.

One appeared to have blown up almost immediately while two flew about 250 km (155 miles) in a northeasterly direction, Pacific Command said, revising an earlier assessment that two of the missiles had failed in flight.

The test came just days after senior U.S. officials praised North Korea and leader Kim Jong Un for showing restraint in not firing any missiles since late July.

The South Korean Office of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said the projectiles were launched from the North’s eastern Kangwon province into the sea.

Later on Saturday, the South Korean Presidential Blue House said the North may have fired an upgraded 300-mm caliber multiple rocket launcher but the military was still analyzing the precise details of the projectiles.

Pacific Command said the missiles did not pose a threat to the U.S. mainland or to the Pacific territory of Guam, which North Korea had threatened earlier this month to surround in a “sea of fire”.

Tensions had eased somewhat since a harsh exchange of words between Pyongyang and Washington after U.S. President Donald Trump had warned North Korean leader Kim Jong Un he would face “fire and fury” if he threatened the United States.

North Korea’s last missile test on July 28 was for an intercontinental ballistic missile designed to fly 10,000 km (6,200 miles). That would put parts of the U.S. mainland within reach and prompted heated exchanges that raised fears of a new conflict on the peninsula.

August 17, 2017

A U.S. Defense Contractor Developed a Drone That Can Fire a Sniper Rifle

August 16, 2017

(Business Insider) - A US defense contractor has developed a consumer-sized sniper drone which it says could save the lives of soldiers and civilians on the battlefield, but some are voicing concerns, Popular Mechanics reported

Duke Robotics, a Florida-based defense contractor, developed the TIKAD sniper drone, and recently sold some to the Israeli military.

They're also pitching it to the Pentagon.

The drone is capable of being fitted with a sniper rifle, grenade launcher, a machine gun, or a variety of other weapons, Defense One and Popular Mechanics reported.

It was used successfully by the Israelis but it only stayed airborne for about five minutes due to weight problems, Defense One reported. The TIKAD drone, however, has overcome previous weight and recoil issues.

The co-founder of Duke Robotics, Israeli military veteran Lt. Col. Raziel “Razi” Atuar, said the drone — which is flown and shot by an operator at a distance — will save civilian and soldier lives because it is more precise, as opposed to Reaper, Predator or Switchblade drones that fire missiles.

“You have small groups [of adversaries] working within crowded civilian areas using civilians as shields. But you have to go in. Even to just get a couple of guys with a mortar, you have to send in a battalion and you lose guys. People get hurt. The operational challenge, it bothered us,” Atuar told Defense One.

But others are leery about the prospect of sniper drones.

"Big military drones traditionally have to fly thousands of feet overhead to get to targets, but these smaller drones could easily fly down the street to apply violent force," University of Sheffield Professor Noel Sharkey told the BBC.

"This is my biggest worry since there have been many legal cases of human-rights violations using the large fixed-wing drones, and these could potentially result in many more," Sharkey said.

Mary Wareham, of Human Rights Watch, also voiced similar concerns.

August 12, 2017

Ultimatum to North Korea, Miscalculations Could Lead to Catastrophic War

Trump Won't Be Cancelling World War 3 After All #Stand Down Mr Trump

August 12, 2017

(Global Research) - On Wednesday, Defense Secretary Mattis issued an ultimatum to North Korea, saying “cease any consideration of actions that would lead to the end of its regime and destruction of its people.”

His warning came in response to Pyongyang suggesting plans to fire ballistic missiles to within 30 – 40 km from Guam by mid-August.

On Thursday, Trump said his “fire and fury” warning perhaps wasn’t “tough enough.” The DPRK should “get (its) act together (or it’ll) be in trouble like few nations have ever been.” Its leadership should be “very, very nervous” if it does anything harmful to America or its allies.

Kim Jong-un “disrespected our country greatly. He’s not getting away with it.”

On Friday, China warned Washington, saying if it tries to forcefully topple North Korea’s government, it’ll intervene to stop it.

It repeated calls for calm and diplomatic outreach – easing tensions, not escalating them further. China’s People’s Daily said

“(a) way out of the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula cannot be found in the latest exchange of tough words between Washington and Pyongyang.”

“(T)he bottom line on the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula is that there must not be any armed conflict there. There is no room for any related party to play with fire on the issue.”

China’s Global Times (GT) said:

“when…actions jeopardize (Beijing’s) interests, (it’ll) respond with a firm hand.”

GT repeated the warning issued in the People’s Daily, saying:

“(i)f the US and South Korea carry out strikes and try to overthrow the North Korean regime and change the political pattern of the Korean Peninsula, China will prevent them from doing so.”

Beijing firmly opposes war on the Korean peninsula, threatening its national security. Its warning against the possibility is the strongest issued so far, a clear message telling Washington to back off.

Beijing won’t tolerate US East Asia aggression. It’s committed to regional peace and stability and will do whatever it takes to achieve these objectives – America’s meddling in a part of the world not its own the main obstacle.

Pentagon’s World War III Scenario

Sanctions against China, Russia, Iran and North Korea. Part of a Global Military Agenda. 

July 29, 2017

(Global Research) - Washington announced sweeping sanctions to be imposed on three countries: Russia, Iran and North Korea, following the US House of Representatives vote to impose a three countries’ sanctions “package”. 

While the justifications are diverse and unrelated, all three countries are from a military and geopolitical standpoint on the US nuclear “hit list”. They are considered as de facto rogue states, enemies of America.

The Congressional bill invoked respectively Tehran’s support of terrorism, Russia’s meddling in the 2016 presidential elections, and North Korea’s ICBM missile tests.

The pretexts with regard to Russia and Iran are largely fabricated. The main sponsor of Islamic terrorism is US intelligence.

The “package sanctions regime” is intimately related to the Deep State military agenda. Moreover it is worth noting that the legislation included a (rather dangerous) clause to “disapprove of any moves the president makes to end the sanctions… and build a better relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin.”

This clause is visibly intended by the neocon hawks in Washington to constrain the powers of the White House. In the words of Paul Craig Roberts, they intend to “Put Trump in a box.”

The Congressional bill still requires the endorsement of President Trump, who might exercise his veto.

The China Sanctions Regime

While China was excluded from the Congressional three countries’ “package”, Washington formally intimated in early July that sanctions would also be imposed on China in response to China’s increased bilateral commodity trade with North Korea.

China is described as an ally of North Korea. While the US sanctions regime is not officially directed against the Chinese government, selected Chinese banks and trading companies involved in the financing of China-DPRK commodity trade are potential targets of US reprisals.

Having lost patience with China, the Trump administration is studying new steps to starve North Korea of cash for its nuclear program, including an option that would infuriate Beijing: sanctions on Chinese companies that help keep the North’s economy afloat.

The insinuation is crystal clear: curtail your trade with North Korea, or else…

Washington has visibly opted for a coordinated package of sanctions which is intimately related to its global military agenda. Is this sanctions regime a preamble to military action?

Wisconsin Firm Embeds Microchips in Employees

August 9, 2017

(USA TODAY) - You will get chipped. It’s just a matter of time.

In the aftermath of a Wisconsin firm embedding microchips in employees last week to ditch company badges and corporate logons, the Internet has entered into full-throated debate.

Religious activists are so appalled, they’ve been penning nasty 1-star reviews of the company, Three Square Market, on Google, Glassdoor and social media.

On the flip side, seemingly everyone else wants to know: Is this what real life is going to be like soon at work? Will I be chipped?

“It will happen to everybody,” says Noelle Chesley, 49, associate professor of sociology at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. “But not this year, and not in 2018. Maybe not my generation, but certainly that of my kids.”

Gene Munster, an investor and analyst at Loup Ventures, is an advocate for augmented reality, virtual reality and other new technologies. He thinks embedded chips in human bodies is 50 years away. “In 10 years, Facebook, Google, Apple and Tesla will not have their employees chipped,” he says. “You’ll see some extreme forward-looking tech people adopting it, but not large companies.”

The idea of being chipped has too “much negative connotation” today, but by 2067 “we will have been desensitized by the social stigma,” Munster says.

A microchip is shown compared with a dime Tuesday, Aug. 1, 2017, at Three Square Market in River Falls, Wis., (Photo: Jeff Baenen, AP)

For now, Three Square Market, or 32M, hasn’t offered concrete benefits for getting chipped beyond badge and log-on stats. Munster says it was a “PR stunt” for the company to get attention to its product and it certainly succeeded, getting the small start-up air play on CBS, NBC and ABC, and generating headlines worldwide. The company, which sells corporate cafeteria kiosks designed to replace vending machines, would like the kiosks to handle cashless transactions.

This would go beyond paying with your smartphone. Instead, chipped customers would simply wave their hands in lieu of Apple Pay and other mobile-payment systems.

The benefits don't stop there. In the future, consumers could zip through airport scanners sans passport or drivers license; open doors; start cars; and operate home automation systems. All of it, if the technology pans out, with the simple wave of a hand.

Not a GPS tracker

The embedded chip is not a GPS tracker, which is what many critics initially feared. However, analysts believe future chips will track our every move.

For example, pets for years have been embedded with chips to store their name and owner contact. Indeed, 32M isn’t the first company to embed chips in employees. In 2001, Applied Digital Solutions installed the “VeriChip” to access medical records but the company eventually changed hands and stopped selling the chip in 2010.

In Sweden, BioHax says nearly 3,000 customers have had its chip embedded to do many things, including ride the national rail system without having to show the conductor a ticket.

In the U.S., Dangerous Things, a Seattle-based firm, says it has sold “tens of thousands” of chips to consumers via its website. The chip and installation cost about $200.

After years of being a subculture, “the time is now” for chips to be more commonly used, says Amal Graafstra, founder of Dangerous Things. “We’re going to start to see chip implants get the same realm of acceptance as piercings and tattoos do now.”

In other words, they’ll be more visible, but not mainstream yet.

“It becomes part of you the way a cellphone does,” Graafstra says. “You can never forget it, and you can’t lose it. And you have the capability to communicate with machines in a way you couldn’t before.”

But after what we saw in Wisconsin last week, what's next for the U.S. workforce? A nation of workers chipping into their pods at Federal Express, General Electric, IBM, Microsoft and other top corporations?

Experts contend consumers will latch onto chips before companies do.

Chesley says corporations are slower to respond to massive change and that there will be an age issue. Younger employees will be more open to it, while older workers will balk. “Most employers who have inter-generational workforces might phase it in slowly,” she says. “I can’t imagine people my age and older being enthusiastic about having devices put into their bodies.”

Kickbacks to Politicians and Bureaucrats from Marijuana Licensees (or are Politicians and Bureaucrats the Silent Owners and Investors)?

October 2, 2016

(The Denver Post) - Colorado’s marijuana business owners — nearly 1,200 of them — control a quickly growing and powerful industry that is approaching $1 billion in annual sales.

Yet basic information about these entrepreneurs is not available to the public without paying hefty fees, in contrast to what is available about owners of other state-licensed businesses.

The Marijuana Enforcement Division of the Colorado Department of Revenue will disclose the names of those with ownership interests in more than 2,500 active medical and recreational marijuana licenses issued since 2014.

But the agency will not provide a list that connects owners with their businesses — information it has provided to The Denver Post in the past — or disclose the size of their ownership stakes, what kinds of marijuana licenses they hold and how many businesses they own. In response to several public information requests from The Post, the state said it would provide that information one name at a time at a cost of about $10,000.

And information about any state disciplinary actions against a marijuana business is only available by paying the state hundreds of additional dollars in fees.

“This is not supposed to be secret,” said Larisa Bolivar, executive director of Cannabis Consumers Coalition, an advocacy group. “They are giving licenses for a public business and we have a right to know who owns them.”

The same details about the owners of dozens of other state licensed industries and occupations in Colorado and any discipline meted out to them — from liquor stores and automobile dealers to acupuncturists and veterinarians — is available on request or on the state’s various websites.

For each, the public can learn — often at no cost — the name of a business owner or licensee, any infractions they allegedly committed and any penalty the state regulating authority has issued.

“There doesn’t seem to be a sound rationale in this denial of information,” said Sen. John Kefalas, D-Fort Collins. “If you can have (disclosure) for other licensees in other professions, it’s a contradiction not to do it for this.”

Revenue Director Barbara Brohl at first denied The Post’s request for the names of pot-business owners, calling them “individualized data” that were protected by law from disclosure.

“We are really required to maintain the confidentiality of … individualized data information that is provided to us by a licensee,” Brohl told The Post.

Officials eventually released a list of owner names to The Post without any additional information about them. They said their computer system does not store owners’ names matched with addresses and business names, and that court rulings protect them from having to create a new record to fulfill such a request.

The state said it would provide ownership information on a person-by-person basis for all 1,188 people by charging $30 per hour to review each eight-page license application, blacken out information it says is protected from disclosure, and then assess a copy fee for each page.

At a half-hour per owner — the amount it took the department to process one application for The Post — the total cost would be more than $20,000.

Revenue officials later changed their estimate, saying the information The Post sought could be found on two pages of the application, cutting the time it would take to review the paperwork and copies and reducing the cost to about $10,000.

“This makes very little sense and is hardly useful,” said Jeffrey Roberts, executive director of the Colorado Freedom of Information Coalition. “The cost is clearly prohibitive. How are journalists and the public expected to examine records and make any kind of assessment of whether a system is working or not? It’s just remarkable.”

August 6, 2017

The Mass Starvation to Come in China

March 14, 2016

(The Blaze) - Unless Beijing can change the course of their economic policy and environmental usage, millions are doomed to starve.

When this happens, China will look abroad for food and resources and as the world saw in the recent pillaging of African resources, local populations suffer. The newest step of purchasing of American farmland is worrisome, just as the land grab in Africa was for commodities pricing internationally. China must reform economically and environmentally or Americans may end up paying for the consequences.

This may seem like a drastic conjecture given that many in recent years have predicted China to be the world’s next great superpower. While on the surface this seems true, China possessing both a large economy and an expansive global system for natural resources, the underlying foundation of China’s growth has begun to crack and the fallout will wreak havoc for millions of Chinese.

China’s economics are troubling.

Last year’s growth rate of 6.9 percent was the lowest in the last 25 years. More distressing perhaps is that Chinese officials have guaranteed a growth rate of 6.5 percent, lower than 2015’s growth, for the next five years and even at that forecast, many economists cast significant doubt about that guarantee. Furthermore, in just the last six months, exports, one of the bedrocks of the Chinese economy, suffered a 20 percent decrease, one of the largest decreases in more than a decade.

All of these metrics point to a decreased buying power for the Chinese government.

This decreased buying power is reflected in reduced funds for government projects and housing. The housing market continues to be a large bubble. During my travels in the Hunan province, it was hard to miss the massive private and government housing projects that supply millions with work in the central and western provinces of China.

In 2013, the Economist reported that the property bubble in China was prime to burst due to the increasing number of “ghost towns.” The ghost towns they were referring to are actually a misnomer for massive real estate projects that have never housed people. The number of these empty housing projects is likely to increase.

Over the past five years, real estate investment has fallen from above 30 percent to below 5 percent. This decline in large-scale housing projects is reflected in a fluctuating unemployment rate.

While the Chinese contend that their unemployment rate has remained stable over the last five years at under 4.3 percent, estimates by non-government entities deem this number manipulated. Better estimates put the unemployment rate at above 10 percent since 2007: 10 percent of the Chinese labor force, 793 million people, equals 79.3 million people out of work. This amount of Chinese out of work ordinarily might not be an issue, however, the environmental factors spell an even deeper chasm for a heavily indebted Beijing.

China produces less and less food every year because of their poor environmental management practices. One of the greatest concerns is the desert creep phenomenon occurring along the thousands of miles of tree line that separate farming from the deserts that make up a large part of China’s western and northwestern border. Attempts at taming the desert through the use of the “Great Green Wall of China,” a government planted tree system to hold back the aggressive grip of the desert, have all but failed. This failure barely slowed the desert creep which claims more than 3,400 km2 of farm land per year, roughly the size of the city of Atlanta. In grains, for example, Beijing has already conceded that for the foreseeable future, the Chinese grain consumption will greatly exceed its domestic production. Unless the Chinese begin investing in farms abroad, they will be completely dependent on foreign nations to supply them the gap in some of these foods.

Being no longer self-sustainable coupled with decreasing fields for harvest follows a similar trajectory as a period of starvation in Chinese history. The Great Leap Forward Famine was a period from 1959 to 1961 where western scholars estimate that over 45 million people died from starvation. While not culturally or politically analogous, the widening gap between the wealthy and the middle class as well as grain shortages due to desertification spell a similar circumstance on the horizon.

That horizon looms even closer as oil prices reflect an ailing Chinese economy. The recent decline in gasoline prices and futures is in part due to extreme downturn in Chinese exports of African natural resources. As a large player in the global economy, any type of reciprocal downturn from the U.S. or Russia will have an even deepening effect on the economy. Once unemployment reaches a certain threshold, there is little the Chinese can do to feed their people. The cracks become clearer when the Premier of the National People’s Congress, Li Keqiang, announced a $16 billion package to accommodate resettling workers laid off due to the closing of a number of factories in order to quell civil unrest. Many western scholars view this as the first of many stimulus packages for an economy limping on.

However, some Chinese businesspeople have aggressively bought farmland over the past 10 years. The Chinese are estimated to own over $1.4 billion worth of farmland in the United States. Even if their domestic negligence prevails, the Chinese will have possession over nearly a quarter of U.S. pork and a significant hold over our farmland. When Beijing’s carelessness becomes more pronounced, where do you think these Chinese owned farmlands are going to sell their products?

These factors individually fail to predict ruin for the Chinese people. However, when added together, it is inevitable that Beijing must change course if it is to feed its people. China’s reckless spending, aggressive growth despite economic downturn, and abusive environmental policy puts it on a collision course towards certain starvation. If the Chinese starve, Americans will likely pay for the consequences of their recklessness.

Iran Vows 'Unified' Response to Breach of Nuclear Deal

August 5, 2017

(AP) — Iran's President Hassan Rouhani said that his administration and country will show a "unified" response to a breach of the 2015 landmark nuclear deal with world powers.

"The world should know that any breach of the deal will face a unified reaction of the Iranian nation and government."

The Saturday remarks by the Iranian president came during the swearing in ceremony for his second term as president.

Iran's state TV reported that more than 130 high-ranking officials from various countries and international organizations attended the ceremony in Tehran. Among them was EU's foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini, who coordinates follow-up of Iran's nuclear deal.

It was the first time in Iran's history that a large number of foreign officials attended the president's inauguration ceremony.

"Those who intend to tear down the deal, should know that they are tearing down their political life," said Rouhani, without elaborating.

President Donald Trump has repeatedly described the nuclear deal as "bad" and during his campaign vowed to dismantle it.

Trump signed a bill Wednesday that imposes mandatory penalties on those involved in Iran's ballistic missile program and anyone who does business with them.

It would also apply terrorism sanctions to Iran's prestigious Revolutionary Guard and enforce an arms embargo. Iran has vowed to respond if the bill becomes law.

However, Rouhani said his administration will maintain its "moderate" behavior in response to any verbal challenge.

"We prefer peace to war and reform to rigidness," said Rouhani.

Rouhani, 68, a moderate cleric who secured re-election on May 19, promised that his country will pursue a "path of coexistence and interaction with the world."

He vowed that in his second term in office, Iran will "insist on constructive engagement with the world more than before."

Rouhani was first elected in 2013 with nearly 51 percent of the vote.

Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei formally endorsed him for his second term as president on Thursday. Rouhani has to announce his new cabinet members to Parliament within 14 days. It is expected that he will do this on Tuesday.

August 3, 2017

Space-based Weapons Against Staged Threats: Russia, Terrorism, Third-world Crazies, Asteroids and Artificial 'Alien Invasion'

Testimony of Dr. Carol Rosin [Excerpt]

Dr Carol Rosin was the first woman corporate manager of Fairchild Industries and was spokesperson for Wernher Von Braun in the last years of his life. She founded the Institute for Security and Cooperation in Outer Space in Washington DC and has testified before Congress on many occasions about space based weapons. Von Braun revealed to Dr Rosin a plan to justify weapons in spaced based on hoaxing an extraterrestrial threat. She was also present at meetings in the '70s when the scenario for the Gulf War of the '90s was planned.

CR: Dr Carol Rosin
SG: Dr Steven Greer

CR: My name is Carol Rosin. I am an educator who became the first woman corporate manager of an Aerospace Company, Fairchild Industries.

I am a Space and Missile Defense Consultant and have consulted to a number of companies, organizations, and government departments, even the intelligence community. I was a consultant to TRW working on the MX missile, so I was part of that strategy, which turned out to be a role model for how to sell space-based weapons to the public. The MX missile is yet another weapon system that we didn't need. I founded the Institute for Security and Cooperation in Outer Space, a Washington DC based think tank. I am an author and have testified before Congress and the President's Commission on Space.

When I was a Corporate Manager of Fairchild Industries from 1974 through 1977, I met the late Dr Wernher Von Braun. We first met in early 1974. At that time, Von Braun was dying of cancer but he assured me that he would live a few more years to tell me about the game that was being played — that game being the effort to weaponize space, to control the Earth from space and space itself.

Von Braun had a history of working with weapons systems. He escaped from Germany to come to this country and became a Vice President of Fairchild Industries when I had met him. Von Braun's purpose during the last years of his life, his dying years, was to educate the public and decision-makers about why space-based weapons are dumb, dangerous, destabilizing, too costly, unnecessary, unworkable, and an undesirable idea, and about the alternatives that are available.

As practically a deathbed speech, he educated me about those concepts and who the players were in this game. He gave me the responsibility, since he was dying, of continuing this effort to prevent the weaponization of outer space. When Wernher Von Braun was dying of cancer, he asked me to be his spokesperson, to appear on occasions when he was too ill to speak. I did this.

What was most interesting to me was a repetitive sentence that he said to me over and over again during the approximately four years that I had the opportunity to work with him. He said the strategy that was being used to educate the public and decision makers was to use scare tactics — that was how we identify an enemy.

The strategy that Wernher Von Braun taught me was that first the Russians are going to be considered to be the enemy. In fact, in 1974, they were the enemy, the identified enemy. We were told that they had "killer satellites". We were told that they were coming to get us and control us-that they were "Commies."

Then terrorists would be identified, and that was soon to follow. We heard a lot about terrorism.

Then we were going to identify third-world country "crazies." We now call them Nations of Concern. But he said that would be the third enemy against whom we would build space-based weapons. 

The next enemy was asteroids. Now, at this point he kind of chuckled the first time he said it. Asteroids — against asteroids we are going to build space-based weapons.

And the funniest one of all was what he called aliens, extraterrestrials. That would be the final scare. And over and over and over during the four years that I knew him and was giving speeches for him, he would bring up that last card. "And remember Carol, the last card is the alien card. We are going to have to build space-based weapons against aliens, and all of it is a lie."

I think I was too naïve at that time to know the seriousness of the nature of the spin that was being put on the system. And now, the pieces are starting to fall into place. We are building a space-based weapons system on a premise that is a lie, a spin. Wernher Von Braun was trying to hint that to me back in the early 70's and right up until the moment when he died in 1977.

What he told me was that there is an accelerated effort in place. He didn't mention a timeline but he said that it was going to be speeding up faster than anybody could possibly imagine. That the effort to put weapons into space was not only based on a lie but would accelerate past the point of people even understanding it until it was already up there and too late. 

When Von Braun was dying in front of me, the very first day that I met him, he had tubes draining out of his side. He was tapping on the desk telling me, "You will come to Fairchild." I was a schoolteacher. He said, "You will come to Fairchild and you will be responsible for keeping weapons out of space." The way he said it with this intenseness in his eyes, and added that very first day, the first time I met him, that space-based weapons were a dangerous, destabilizing, too costly, unnecessary, untestable, unworkable idea.

The last card that was being held was the extraterrestrial enemy card. 

The intensity with which he said that, made me realize that he knew something that he was too afraid to mention. He was too afraid to talk about it. He would not tell me the details.

I am not sure that I would have absorbed them if he had told me the details or even believed him in 1974. But there was no question that that man knew and had a need to know, I found out later.

There is no doubt in my mind that Wernher Von Braun knew about the extraterrestrial issue. He explained to me the reasons why weapons were going to be put into space, the enemies against whom we were going to build these weapons, and that all of that was a lie. He mentioned that extraterrestrials were going to be identified as the final enemy against whom we were going to build space-based weapons back in 1974.

The way he said it to me, there was no doubt in my mind that he knew something that he was too afraid to talk about.

Wernher Von Braun never spoke to me about any of the details that he knew related to extraterrestrials except that one day extraterrestrials were going to be identified as an enemy against whom we are going to build an enormous space-based weapons system. Wernher Von Braun actually told me that the spin was a lie — that the premise for space-based weaponry, the reasons that were going to be given, the enemies that we were going to identify — were all based on a lie. 

I have been tracking the space-based weapons issue for about 26 years.

I have debated Generals and Congressional Representatives. I have testified before the Congress and the Senate. I have met with people in over 100 countries. But I have not been able to identify who the people are who are making this space-based weapons system happen. I see the news. I see the administrative decisions being made. I know that they are all based on lies and greed. 

But I have yet to be able to identify who the people are. That is after tracking this issue for 26 years. I know that there are big secrets being kept and I know that it is time the public and decision-makers pay attention to the people who are now going to be disclosing the truth. Then we need to make some definite changes and build a system in space that will benefit every single person, and all of the animals, and the environment of this planet. The technology is there. The solutions to Earth's urgent and long-term potential problems are there. I have a feeling that once we start studying this extraterrestrial issue, all of the questions are going to be answered that I have had for 26 years.

But I have concluded that it is based on a few people making a lot of money and gaining power. It is about ego. It is not about our essence and who we really are on this planet and loving each other and being at peace and cooperating. It isn't about using technology to solve problems and heal people in the planet. It isn't about that. It is about a few people who really are playing an old, dangerous, costly game for their own pocketbooks and power struggle. That is all it is. 

I believe that this entire space-based weapons game is initiated right here in the United States of America.


In 1977, I was at a meeting in Fairchild Industries in a conference room called the War Room. In that room were a lot of charts on the walls with enemies, identified enemies. There were other more obscure names, names like Saddam Hussein and Khadafi. But we were talking then about terrorists, the potential terrorists. No one had ever talked about this before but this was the next stage after the Russians against whom we were going to build these space-based weapons. I stood up in this meeting and I said, "Excuse me, why are we talking about these potential enemies against whom we are going to build space-based weapons if, in fact, we know that they are not the enemy at this time?" 

Well, they continued the conversation about how they were going to antagonize these enemies and that at some point, there was going to be a war in the Gulf, a Gulf War. Now this is 1977, 1977! And they were talking about creating a war in the Gulf Region when there was 25 billion dollars in the space-based weapons program that had yet to be identified. It wasn't called the Strategic Defense Initiative, at least not until 1983. This weapons system, then, had obviously been going on for some time and I didn't know anything about. So I stood up in this meeting in 1977 and said, "I would like to know why we are talking about space-based weapons against these enemies. I would like to know more about this. Would someone please tell me what this is about?" Nobody answered. They just went on with this meeting as though I hadn't said anything.

Suddenly, I stood up in the room and said, "If nobody can tell me why you are planning a war in the Gulf when there is a certain amount of money in a budget so that you can create the next set of weapons systems that will be the beginning of the sell to the public about why we need space-based weapons, then consider this: my resignation. And you will not hear from me again!" 

And nobody said a word because they were planning a war in the Gulf and it happened exactly as they planned it, on time. 

SG: Who was at this meeting?

CR: The room was filled with people in the revolving door game. There were people that I had seen once in a military uniform and other times in a gray suit and an industry outfit. These people play a revolving door game. They work as consultants, industry people, and/or military and intelligence people. They work in the industries, and they revolve themselves through these doors and right into government positions. 

I stood up in this meeting and asked if I was hearing correctly — that when there was 25 billion dollars expended in the space-based weapons budget, that there was going to be a war in the Gulf, stimulated, created, so that they could then sell the next phase of weapons to the public and the decision-makers. This war was going to be created so that they could dump the old weapons and create a whole new set of weapons. So I had to resign from that position. I could no longer work in that industry. 

In about 1990 I was sitting in my living room looking at the money that had been spent on space-based weapons research and development programs and I realized that it had come to that number, about 25 billion dollars, and I said to my husband, "I am now going to stop everything. I am not going to stop and sit and watch CNN television and I am going to wait for the war to happen."

My husband said, "Well, you have finally gone over the edge. You have flipped out."  

Friends said, "You have really gone too far this time. There is not going to be a war in the Gulf, nobody is talking about a war in the Gulf." 

I said, "There is going to be a war in the Gulf. I am going to sit here and wait for the war in the Gulf." And it happened right on schedule. 

As part of the war game in the Gulf, we in the public were told that the United States was successful in shooting down Russian Scud Missiles. We were rationalizing new budgets based on that success. In fact, we found out later, after the budgets were approved for the next phase of weapons, that it was a lie. We did not have successful shoot-downs the way we were told. It was all a lie, just to get more money put in the budget to make more weapons. 

I was one of the first people to go independently to Russia when I heard that they had "killer satellites."

[See the testimony of Dr Paul Czysz. SG]

When I went to Russia in the early 70's, I found out that they didn't have killer satellites, that it was a lie. In fact, the Russian leaders and people wanted peace. They wanted to cooperate with the United States and with the people of the world. 

Another time I called Saddam Hussein when he was lighting his oil fields on fire. My husband was in the kitchen while I was making this phone call. I got a call back from his First Attaché with Saddam Hussein nearby and he asked, "Are you a reporter? Are you an agent? Why do you want to know?" 

I said, "No. I am just a citizen who helped to start the movement to prevent the weaponization of outer space and I have found that a lot of stories that I have been told about weapons systems and the enemies are not true. I wanted to find out what would satisfy Saddam Hussein so he would stop making these oil fields catch fire and stop antagonizing people." He said, "Well, nobody has ever asked him that question, what he wants."

Space Arms Race as Russia, China Emerge as 'Rapidly Growing Threats' to US
March 29, 2017

( - U.S. satellites may be vulnerable to attacks that could make our whole way of fighting war riskier, according to experts.

"Every major space-faring nation that can track a satellite and launch into outer space has the means to mess up a satellite," said Michael Krepon, a space security expert and co-founder of the Stimson Center think tank in Washington, D.C.

A space arms race of sorts is underway with weapons under development or in the arsenals of China, Russia and the U.S. Space weapons include satellite jammers, lasers and high-power microwave gun systems.

"My guess is that our capabilities to carry out a war in space are a lot better than the Chinese and Russians," said Krepon.